Crepe maker bed bath and beyond

Bed Bath and Beyond

2016.04.07 20:15 sendmebearpics Bed Bath and Beyond

Stories and advice from Bed Bath and Beyond, plus other stuff. We don't care about stock stuff here
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2021.01.14 22:39 zoomermoney BBBY

Stock talk about Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY) and Buy Buy Baby. HODL.
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2023.06.09 17:04 Tememachine I couldn't resist the meme. 不不

I couldn't resist the meme. 不不 submitted by Tememachine to BBBY [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:45 Late2notice 4 year old constantly playing with poop

This is a throwaway account from something else but I'll use it again
I also posted this lastnight but posting here too cause it fits
Title says it all. 4yr old daughter has always played in her poop as long as she's ever known its a thing. So a few yrs
I asked her if she needed to use the potty before bed and she used it. Then as I'm sleeping and we're in our rooms I heard a weird noise so I checked on her and caught her smearing poop literally all over her room. The walls, her toys, her bed, her arms and face, the carpet. Everywhere. Its not the first time at all, it won't be the last either. But every time it breaks me down
So I gave her a bath and when it time to come out of the bath she just starts screaming bloody murder and laying on the floor to bash her head backwards on the floor in a fit. But I'm so tired from being up all night, waking up early then being up all day I didn't want to spend an hr letting her play in the bath I kept telling her its ok, bathtime was over its time for us to go to sleep, it's bedtime.
She'll play with her poop for like 3-4 days in a row then not do it for maybe 1.5-2 weeks. Then do it again. Sometimes she might have a month stretch where she doesn't. I've tried teaching her but she just doesn't listen, she knows it's wrong though.
We find out Monday if she has autism or something because she also barely communicates, just screams alot and grunts/growls a lot. If she does say things she either screams it or growls it, that's if she talks at all. She mostly just grunts or screams. We tried speech therapy for almost a yr, it helped kind of but not a lot. So the pediatrician and the preschool wanted her tested so that's what we did
We have a 4 month old as well, I'm a stay at home mom and my husband works midnights. So I'm often up all night with the baby (she wakes about every 2-3hrs to eat. EBF) then awake all day.
I feel like breaking. I feel like sobbing. I feel worn down. I have her 24/7. I feel withered and just so broken and tired. I don't get any help. Husband goes to work then goes to the gym so when he gets home he can't help and then he sleeps in. It's all on me. I've tried asking him to hold off on the gym for a little that I need help severely I'm being worn down but he won't.
She eats playdoh and gets it all over, I've tried that. I've tried teaching her and letting her know why it's bad, she could get Ecoli or something. Rewarding her when she doesn't. Scolding her when she does. Ignoring it. Praising her when she doesn't.
Idk what to do. But I'm one tired mom and I'm just trying my best
Pls 朮
submitted by Late2notice to breakingmom [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:45 Optimal_Accident_111 AITA/WIBTA for telling on my bosses sons?

Hello my name is Olive (name changed) I'm 31/F from Australia. I am personal house keeper for a well respected doctor and her family and I work 5 days a week. I have been doing this job for about 4 months and always try my best to be kind, friendly, helpful and try my hardest at my job. I look after their dog whilst I'm there, plus house work, letting trades people etc in and continuously pick up and tidy up after her two sons 19 and 21. A few days ago at work while I was on the top level of the house, whilst changing the linens on the bed in the master bedroom I looked out the verandah to see 2 puppies who has escaped their yard and where running willy nilly around in a bushy area next to the river that backs onto the properties, one adult and one young puppy. I panicked as I was very scared they would slip into the river and drown. I ran down the two internal flights of stairs and down 3 more flights of stairs to get to the rivers edge (which is incredibly hard as I am not the smallest woman, quite challenged in the fitness department, with breathing problems, imagine if you will a plump potato with little legs that sounds like a snoring pug while running down three sets of steps made of lose pebbles and wood... not pretty) I hauled ass down there to find I needed to scale a fence and walk through the mud to get to this little pupper and you bet I got him, he was cold, muddy and miserable. I took my jumper off and wrapped him up and carried him back through the mud, over the fence and back up the stairs to the house. One of the boys youngest we will call him A 19/m happened to come outside as I walked into the courtyard head to toe in mud and carrying a shivering dog. Yes I can say he did assist me in getting towels and food for the pup and put a photo of him up in social media to help track down his owner. I had to sit in a jumper which I had to ask numerous for numerous times, that was three times to small and a towel so I could wash my clothes, I bathed, cuddled and comforted this scared lost little soul, until his Dad came to collect him. All within 1.5 hours of the rescue, which was an awesome win! His owner was absolutely frantic and so grateful that his baby was safe and sound, we came to learn he was only just 4 months old. Here's where I'm unsure what to do, after all the antics I finally washed and dried my clothes and got dressed, finished my jobs for the day and went home. After I left the fellow dropped by a lovely bottle of wine as a thank you gift which is so kind of him. However, I wasn't there so I did not recieve it, nor did either of the sons whome where the only people there at the time as my boss and her husband are out of the country, actually tell me anything about it. Although while at work today I did clean up while classes, and remnants of the left overs of the wine. I feel really really hurt that I wasn't even told about it nor was I given a gift that was destined for me. It is a personal choice that I don't drink alcohol, but I would have really enjoyed having a glass as a cheers to the little furry dude who plopped into my life for an hour or so. WIBTA if I messaged my boss to let her know her sons basically stole my thank you gift?? Thanks in advance (sorry it was so long winded)
EDIT 1 FOR CLARIFICATION:
I only found out about the gift after I was messaged from the owner thanking me and telling me to enjoy it for helping them.
The older dog took off when I called out and was able to make its way home whereas the younger dog was down further on the side of the incline and unable to make its way up to where it's canine companion was. I would have gone after both if I was physically able but unfortunately I couldn't I'm just glad everyone was safe.
submitted by Optimal_Accident_111 to AITAH [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:44 Extension-Concept893 23 [F4M] RAPE RP!?

Hi i'm Luna I'm semi lit and I want you to be too I only RP on Kik
Kik:julie9556
Kinks: incest, impregnation, deflowering, degration, praise,kissing , grobing , I like when you talk dirty to the girl as she gets raped even if she isn't conscious, rape, sleep rape , semi rape
Limits:no shit , piss, gore , vomit , beastiality
  1. This plot is about a college virgin girl who goes to her first college party she didn't really like parties but thought why not I am in college see she was invited by a college senior who's throwing the party she found it odd since they never really talked before but accepted but she wasn't invited by accident the college seniors have a tradition that at the first party of the year they have to drug and rape a virgin freshmen so why she's sitting alone the guy who invited her started chatting with her and slips her a pill in her drink it's a drug that makes her more docile and horny and really out of it and than he helps her to a bedroom at the party where his friends wait and thats where the fun begins
  2. this plot is about a highschool girl who's is a real trouble maker who always prank the teachers and talk back to especially her English teacher who's also her homeroom teacher and has been her homeroom teacher for 2 years now her English teacher was already having a tough time his wife left him and took his daughter with him and now he has to deal with this little brat so one day he gave detention again for talking back to him again but furring detention he got so tired of hearing her little smart ass mouth he when she wasn't watching slipped a drug in her water and when she drunk it she was knocked out and why she was unconscious he decided he was going to teach this little bitch a lesson and raped her even taking her virginity and impregnating her
  3. This plot is about a girl who went out to the club with some of her friends wanting to have some fun but as they all get drunk her two friends leave with some guys forgetting her and she's left in the middle of the dance floor hardly able to stand swaying to the music plastered when two guys notice her and decides it's their lucky night one of them goes up behind her and starts dancing with her and touching on her as he slowly gets her out the club with the help of his friend where they take her to the back of their suv and they both slowly start to rape her
  4. This plots about a father and his perfect little girl she makes perfect grades , perfect behavior and has the perfect body though the father never looked at that before it hasn't been easy he and his wife hadn't touched each other in years and there's no secret their not really in love anymore though they play the role in front of their daughter but he then started noticing how much she developed he was messed up with himself from looking at her like that but he couldn't help it when one night after a fight with his wife he goes to his daughters room to check on her but seeing her there so beautiful he couldn't help it he slid into bed behind her and starts to touch and kiss on her and when she starts to wake up he shushs her and begins to rape her
  5. This plot is about a 21 years old brother and his 13 year old petite sister his parents have always traveled a lot for work so leaving him and his sister home alot so he is use taking care of his bratty little sister see his sister likes to make bets with her brother to get money or make him do something and what he hated about that she always won the bet well one day she made a bet with him if she won this video game he'll have to go to the store and by her ice cream well of course as always he lost but when he came back from the store he noticed his sister fell asleep at first he tries to wake her up but than he noticed how cute she got and he's been single for 3 years now and hasn't been with a girl in a awhile when he started by groping and touching her than he ends up raping her while shes asleep
  6. This plot is about two childhood friends who are completely opposites they work at the same company well actually he's the CEO who hired her to help her out but he's big on following rules he's always lecturing her he can come off as Abit stick up she on the other hand is Abit of a flirt she's always late to work and stays out all night partying but she's the best at her job secret is he's always loved her but never realized when one day he over heard her on the phone with her new boyfriend he didn't understand at the moment why this pissed him off but than that night when everyone else left he found her in his office sleeping on the sofa there at first he was going to wake her up but the more he looked at her and her body the more pissed and jealous he got and knowing she's a deep sleeper he started to touch her than raped her
submitted by Extension-Concept893 to rape_hentairoleplay [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:38 Itchy_Crow8080 Off-campus Roommates?

Hi y'all! I know it's kind of late but I'm hoping to move off-campus for the Fall and am looking for 1-2 roommates for a 2-3 bed, 1 bath apartment in either the Park DBuswell/ Beacon St or Allston/West Campus-ish area.
Ideal price range is anything < $1600/month per person, and hoping to move in late August / beginning of September.
I've had my eye on a few listings that match these preferences so far but I just need a roommate to seal the deal, so please PM if interested!
submitted by Itchy_Crow8080 to BostonU [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:36 Interminabilis red scare stock tips

found a note from october 2019 titled "red scare stock tips" (around the time of the episode where Dasha opinionates on bed bath and beyond and abercrombie&fitch) my note says "bed bath and beyond $14.80 (short it), Abercrombie $17.44 (long it)" Today, bed bath and beyond is bankrupt delisted and trading at 21 cents a share, while abercrombie trades at $34.79 a share. Listen to your ladies, fellas .
submitted by Interminabilis to redscarepod [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:31 momentusblub Female Only Sublease August 18-July 31st 940 a month

Female Only Sublease August 18-July 31st 940 a month
The lease for this sublease begins August 18th 2023- July 31st 2024
Retreat West
bed 4 private bath room comes with Queen bed, desk, 2 storage drawers, and nightstand.
UTILITIES INCLUDED
shuttle to and from campus
room on 2nd floor
all female no pets/no smoke
submitted by momentusblub to UCFstudenthousing [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:30 Spectral42 Something strange is happening in LittleBrooke. Whatever you do, stay away.

If youre reading this I am begging you to believe me. Especially if you have children. My name is Leon and I have been investigating strange disappearances for four years. I am not an official investigator or a journalist. Before I started this whole thing I did not believe in ghosts or the paranormal. For me to believe in something I had to see it with my own two eyes! Everything had to be factual and everything had an explanation.
At least this is what I used to believe until my wife was murdered four years ago. They found her at work completely skinless. She was drained of blood and was missing all of her nails. They told me the precision required to accomplish this was not heard of yet. I waited months for answers and they never came, so I decided to go get them myself. I had no idea where to start or who to speak to so I went back to the store to try and dig up as much information as I could find.
Her manager eventually told me that she had gotten into a fight with a customer that day and that he assumed she went home on time. When her body was found in the employee break room he was shocked. He had no idea she was still in the building. He said he told me exactly what he told the police. I asked him if there was any footage of the man she was arguing with but he told me the security cameras were not working that day. I vividly remember wanting to punch this guy in his damn face. He was no help and I was determined to solve my wife's murder.
I ended up searching for the guy for months. I asked every one of her coworkers if they saw the argument and a couple of times I even had a run-in with the cops. They insisted that I should let them do their jobs and that they had everything handled. There was no chance I was going to listen to them. I had to take time off from my investigation to attend her funeral and make sure I got all of the preparations right. In hindsight, I was not growing properly and I really should've taken some time to reassess.
So fast forward another month and I finally get a lead. Something I assumed the cops didn't have, this meant I could finally get some answers before being stonewalled again. I ended up finding this guy, Will Brookes at a fucken motel off of the highway about three miles from where my wife worked. I waited for two days before I saw him leave his room to get ice. Once I knew what room to find him in I knocked until he opened the door. He was rightfully pissed but not as pissed as I was. It took every ounce of willpower in my body to not kill him on the spot.
Why did you kill my wife?! I snapped as I forced myself into the room and slammed the door behind me. He looked shocked.
I did not kill her! He screamed and tried to move around me. So I grabbed him by his shirt and slammed him into the wall next to the tv. This guy was not very heavy and not very strong. At that moment I was wondering how he could kill anyone.
You were the last person to be seen with her alive! I barked. I wanted to push his body through the wall. I wanted to crush him.
I was bringing her the papers she requested for a job offer she accepted in a place called LittleBrooke! The man said. He was shaking so I put him down and pushed him to the side. Show me the papers, I demanded. My wife had told me twice that she had gotten a new job offer. I was extremely excited! I work from home and would be happy to live wherever she wanted. All she had to do was say the word and we couldve left as soon as possible. But she never made it home to tell me the news.
I watched as the shaking man handed me a stack of papers and even a suitcase. Here, take it and please leave me alone! He shouted. Okay. I left the motel room and went right to my car. I put everything on the passenger seat and went home. Once I got there I sobbed in the driveway for over an hour before finally getting out and heading inside. I never got to see her body and I never got to say goodbye. Being in this house felt like I was walking into a damn shallow grave of sorts.
I went right to the master bedroom and packed up as many clothes as I could. I even took some of her favorite items, I dont know why. I took a couple of pillows and two blankets, and after that, I went around to search the rest of the house. Once I had finished in the master bedroom I went and grabbed all my items from the bathroom. After that, I went into the nursery. We were planning on trying to have a baby once she got her new job. I looked around the nursery and took some stuffed animals and blankets, nothing too crazy. I also made sure to grab our family photo album. Finally, I made sure to grab all of the savings from the jar we had plus anything I kept in the safe. I also made sure to grab our wedding video and once I had everything I thought I could need I left the house. On my way out I made sure to tell the building goodbye.
Once I got back into my car I decided to drive a bit. No way in hell was I going to the same motel as that guy so I drove until I hit a hotel far enough away from my house. I did not end up checking in though. Once I got close enough I backed up and just kept driving. I eventually hit a truck stop after a couple of hours and decided to rest my eyes for a while. I was exhausted and there were way too many questions rushing through my head. I knew if I kept driving in that state I would probably crash or something.
After sleeping for four hours I decided it was time to look through the papers and figure out what I was going to do next. I took the first paper from the stack and started to read it. For the sake of time here I will only tell you guys what I found that was interesting.
Paper One: You have been accepted to work as a store manager! Please review your employee packet for more information.
So as I am going over this first paper a couple of things stick out to me. Whoever wrote this was trying not to be specific. The whole paper was one big announcement for a new store opening up in a place called LittleBrooke. There was no state mentioned anywhere on this paper, I would later find out that this place was supposed to be in Washington D.C.
I decided to dig around and eventually found the employee packet. She accepted a job at a mega-store called BrightMarketZ. I thought it was a pretty weird name but what stood out to me was what they were offering to pay her. $22.00 an hour! I couldn't believe it. No wonder she said yes and didnt bother to ask any questions.
Paper Twenty: To find LittleBrooke please enter [REDACTED] into your GPS device. You will be staying inside apartment 307. All rent for your first month in LittleBrooke is covered by your employer. Please note that all apartments are two-bedroom only. If you have a larger household please speak to Sydney May at Town Hall for bigger accommodations.
After reading this I decided to just go to LittleBrooke and get answers. I was assuming that I would find out what the hell happened if I just went. I wanted to know what my wife died for and I wanted to know why this was some big secret in the first place. I went back to bed and as soon as the sun came up I put the information into my GPS and headed for LittleBrooke.

Year One in LittleBrooke

It took me three weeks to reach LittleBrooke and I could tell that something was wrong the moment I found the town. If I wasn't so damn desperate for answers I would've turned around as soon as I saw the library. The building itself wasn't big but the two huge lions on either side of the staircase gave me the creeps.
After that I passed a mechanic, the whole place looked run down as hell. There wasn't a single car to be seen but the sign said open. The man standing outside of the building waved to me so I gave him a slow wave back. He looked weird. At the time I couldnt place my finger on why but now I know its because he was not human.
The theater was kind of cool to look at in a vintage kind of way. They were not showing anything when I drove by and I made the decision early on to stay out of the theater altogether. After the theater, I saw a small building that said LittleBrooke Press. If anything else I figured I could write for the paper.
As I approached the apartment building a woman was standing outside. Her face was weird as hell. It looked like she had far too much plastic surgery like her face was threatening to pop at any moment. Hi, can I help you? she asked me. Her voice was shrill, it was gross to even hear her speak. It sounded like she was putting on a fake voice just to speak to me. Hi, my wife accepted a job offer. Unfortunately, she has passed away. I would still like to claim the apartment left to us. I can work at any place that currently has an opening. I offered.
LittleBrooke Press has space for two more writers! She smiled and handed me the keys to the apartment. She never asked my name and she knew exactly where I wanted to go. I thought it was weird but I didnt argue. Instead, I took the keys and thanked her. I spent that whole day getting settled into the new apartment. A couple of things, the front door had four different locks on it. I thought that was pretty weird. I also did not see or hear any other people until my third night in the apartment. I called the LittleBrooke Press about a potential job and they told me to email my submissions. There was no need for me to come in person and honestly, I liked this deal a lot.
For the first few months, I spent my time writing about whatever came to my mind. After that, I would send it in and get my money back. The editor never told me what to do and they never requested anything. It was sweet. As December rolled around I could feel myself slipping into a seasonal depression. At that point, I had made no progress in any of my investigations. I did not know the town well enough and frankly, I felt like I was wasting my time. That night I decided to check out the local bar. It was pretty hidden, you had to drive further into LittleBrooke to find it. Once I got there I was shocked! The place was packed. I sat down at the bar and ordered a drink.
The bartender was hot as hell, too hot. She was so even looking so perfectly symmetrical that it made me extremely uncomfortable. There wasnt a single hair out of place. So are you new in town? She asked me. Yeah, I just got here a couple of months ago. My now-deceased wife accepted a job offer here. I said bluntly and dryly. I wanted to finish my drink and go. It was like the bones in my body were screaming at me to leave. The woman looked shocked. Tell me, does that happen often? Do people accept a job offer in LittleBrooke and turn up dead a couple of days later? I hissed. It was a genuine question but she did not take it too kindly. She took my drink from my hands and told me to leave.
As I made my way back to my car I could hear someone coming up from behind me. I turned around as fast as possible and had to take three steps back. It was the bartender, but she did not look the same. Half of her face was weighed down like she had no bones at all. Her eyes were bulging out of her head. She gurgled at me. You need to leave! She finally snapped and swung her arm in my direction. I moved back before she could hit me. As her hand hit my car window it shattered like it was made of ice. I watched as her arm popped and clicked. I could see it slowly getting longer. Before I knew it her arm was dragging on the pavement! She lunged at me so I punched her in her stomach. She gurgled again and sunk her teeth into my jacket. I screamed for help as we hit the pavement. She was trying fucken eat me! I grabbed her by her hair and threw her backward as hard as I could. As I scrambled to my feet and looked at her I screamed again. Her skin was pulled back. Now hugging the bones on her face. Her eyes were completely exposed! I turned and dove into my car as fast as I could. I slammed the door behind me and sped out of the parking lot like a bat out of hell.
The next morning I received a letter under my door. Sorry, you had problems last night! Please accept our sincerest apologies. -Mayor Brookes. There was $300 included with the letter. Now, I thought about leaving but decided I had to stay. Something was going on here and I had to find out what. I removed my jacket to see if the woman had injured me, she didn't but the experience was still terrifying. For the first time in a very long time, I was scared. But I also felt closer to the truth than I have ever been before.

Year Two in LittleBrooke

I spent all of January writing about the women who attacked me. I even contacted the police. I quickly learned that the police were going to be completely useless. My editor never sent the story back so I had assumed it was published.
At the end of the month, I left to shop for some supplies. Let me tell you, the grocery store in LittleBrooke is something else. They dont have any brands youve ever heard of and at first, that drove me nuts. However, I quickly came to fall in love with the food here. It was comforting to have something to enjoy. Like always, I made sure to shop for two to three months at a time. Shopping was easy, I used the self-checkout to make sure I didnt have to speak to anyone.
Once I got home I put everything away and decided to look around the apartment building. My whole floor started with 301 and went all the way to 310. The first floor was 501 to 509. There was a technical second floor but none of the doors were labeled. It looked like someone was renovating the place.
I got to see some of my neighbors too. An older woman, two men, and I were living next door to a lady the whole time. I had never seen or heard from these people before. It seemed like everyone wanted to keep to themselves too. I wanted to try and talk to someone but every time I approached them they turned and walked away. For what it's worth they looked completely normal.
So I left the apartment building and ventured around the property. There were no other apartments anywhere close to the one I was staying at, or so I thought until I found one about thirty minutes away. It was so out of the way you wouldn't find it unless you were looking. Against my better judgment, I opened the doors to the building and walked right inside. The place smelled like rust and soot.
I went to explore the first floor and was shocked to find blood trails on the floor and the ceiling. I followed the trail and made sure to look at the numbers on each door. This floor was numbered 1-10. Most of the doors were locked and I wasnt going to try and knock anything down. I opened the door to apartment 10 and walked right inside. There was just enough light from the sun to illuminate the place. It looked like the whole place had been ransacked. I checked the tables and cabinets before heading into the bedroom. I searched the dresser and under the pillows before finally checking under the bed. When I looked under I spotted a black box. I grabbed it and that is when I got the feeling again. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up and I felt something sharp dig into my shoulders.
I screamed as loudly as I could, my face slammed off of the carpet and I clenched the box with one hand. Before I could figure out what the hell was happening I was tossed backward. I went into the bedroom door and rolled a couple of times until I reached the torn-up couch. I slowly lifted my head and to my horror what I was looking at was way too far from human to be real.
It looked like a dog ape thing. It was mostly skinless aside from some skin on its torso and face. The creature had thick, long claws and was standing on its hind legs. It barked at me. Its fangs were huge! I quickly scrambled to my feet and rushed out of the door as fast as possible. I could feel the blood running down my back. Never once did I consider letting this box go.
Help! I screamed as I burst through the apartment complex doors and started to run back to the main road. My heart was pounding, I could feel my chest getting tighter with each step. I could hear the beast behind me, it was screeching. I thought I was going to die for sure, there was no way I could continue to outrun this beast. Thats when I heard a car and before I knew it I could see it! A woman was waving me over, she was just up ahead! I had to push a little harder. I had to be just a little stronger.
When I felt the embrace of the car door I ripped it open and dove inside. She sped away and I looked out of the window. The beast did not follow us any further. Are you insane! She snapped at me. Thats the last thing I remember before passing out.
When I woke up I was laying on my stomach on an extremely comfortable couch. I could smell someone making pasta with meat sauce. My stomach was going insane. Everything hurt though, especially my back and my left side. I figured I had hurt my side when I was tossed across the room.
At this point, I did not dive into the box yet. I could barely move. Hi. I heard a woman say from the kitchen. Thank you, I replied before trying to sit up. I was so concerned that this woman would be another monster. When I saw her though I knew she was normal. She didn't look so damn perfect and that was a breath of fresh air.
What's your name? She asked me as I watched her prepare two bowls of food.
Leon, I said before closing my eyes. You heard me screaming? I asked her seriously.
I did. Im pretty sure everyone in our building did. You got hurt pretty badly, I did my best to patch you up. She paused and laughed. My name is Ashley.
So I ended up crashing at her place. During this time I tried to focus on recovering. Sleeping became hell, I was having constant nightmares. I also spent a lot of time working on articles. I ended up giving Ash the keys to my apartment so she could get my laptop. It was a big move to trust anyone here but I am glad I did.

Year Three and Four in LittleBrooke

During my recovery, I spent most of my time writing. I wanted to write about everything I have seen and experienced. I had a lot of questions and way too much time with my thoughts. Ash and I got to know each other too.
I told her about how my wife had died mysteriously. I eventually opened up about her being skinned and drained of her blood. Ash told me she had come to LittleBrooke with her older sister. Her sister went to work one day and never came back. She was working at the theater. Ash had told me that she was stuck here, she didnt feel right leaving with her sister still missing. Every time she would try the cops would meet her at the town line.
It was during this time that we both shared that we had never seen a police station. We talked about the monsters too. Her first run-in with one was at the grocery store. I told her about what happened to me at the bar. She told me that she heard rumors of the beast living beyond the apartments. The first time she saw it was when it was attacking me.
As I started to recover more we discussed a couple of things. First, the neighbors here suck. She could hear me screaming and came to help but no one else did. Second, neither of us has seen any families since we moved here. It was at this point I decided I wanted to leave and I offered to take her with me. We could both get out come hell or high water. She agreed but there was something I had to do first.
I showed her the box I had taken from the apartment.
You almost died for a box? Ash asked me. Yes, I said seriously.
I opened it and blinked. I found a picture of a girl with black hair and bright green eyes. It read, Stephanie. I found a missing persons report too. This girl had been missing a year before I got here. I decided that my last article would be about her. I had written about a couple of missing people before this. For example, the old lady in our building vanished and her apartment was rented out two days later.
I also found a badge inside the box. It read F.O.P.P. and there was a name! Jack Bridges. We tried to look up the organization's name but we came up empty-handed. I ended up writing the story about Stephanie and the next day Ash and I got packing. We decided to take my car since the cops know what hers looks like. I packed up the essentials all over again and we piled into the car. We should check the other direction. Before we leave. I suggested. Ash knew about the bar already but neither of us knew what was beyond that point: This suggested changed the course of our lives forever.
So we started driving in the other direction. We passed the bar where the woman had tried to eat me, we passed a convenience store I didnt know this town had and we just kept driving. Eventually, I could hear Ash speaking to me, Holy shit! The police station. she pointed out. I couldnt believe it either. I did not stop driving though but I wish I did.
Eventually, we saw a sign that read, LittleBrooke High. Go Bears!
I started to slow down a bit until the school was in view. The place looked run down as hell. There were holes in the walls and leaves growing up the side of the building. The parking lot was massive and full of buses. I pulled the car into the parking lot and told Ash to get into the driver's seat.
Youre not serious? She asked me. I could tell she wanted to go but I said, This is it! This is the last place of note in this fucken town. Just take the wheel and I will be right back. I said as I jumped out of the car and went to look around.
As I approached one of the buses I grabbed the doors, they were already open a crack. I pulled them open and was hit with a horrible stench. I had to step back and puke and no I am not going to describe what I saw in that fucken bus. At that point, I decided I had seen enough and it was time to fucken go.
Help! I heard someone cry from a couple of buses over. Please! I heard again. I wanted to slap myself because I knew better. I had already decided it was time to leave but I went to investigate anyway. I went to the bus and pulled the doors open. It smelled like stale piss and blood. Back here! A girl screamed out to me. I made my way to the back of the bus, stepping on school jackets and over backpacks. That is where I found them. Two teenagers are tied to the leg of a bus seat. They looked horrible, caking in blood and sweat. They were both injured. Stephanie?! I exclaimed as I bent over to free them. I recognized her face the moment I saw it.
Can you move? I asked the blonde girl. As I started to let her go. Everything hurts. She told me. I opened the emergency exit and called for Ash to pull the car over. It took her a second to hear me but she came as fast as possible. I am going to get you guys in the car and we are going to get out of here, okay? I told them. I wanted to tell them everything was going to be okay, but I couldn't. It felt like that would be a huge lie.
Ash stepped out of the car and helped get the girls into the backseat. As I stopped to look around I could feel the bus shift in weight. I turned around and inhaled sharply. Standing before me was a creature wearing a jacket that said COACH on it. He looked sickly, and pale, and his veins were protruding from his face and hands. As he ran at me I jumped out of the emergency exit door just in time to feel something slam off of the back of my head. I looked down to see a barbed football. I could feel blood trickling down my neck, I stumbled forward and felt a hand grab my arm. Ash was shoving me into the car. She slid over me, closed the passenger door, and backed the car up. I thought she was moving like lightning.
At this point, everyone was screaming. My heart was threatening to jump out of my fucken chest. I was so sure we were all going to die here, just like everyone else I had seen on the buses. But no, Ash sped out of the parking lot. The coach chased us to the school limits but for some reason, he did not follow us anymore.
I know we should've stopped to see if the kids could find their parents but we didn't. Instead, Ash just kept driving. Eventually, we could hear the cops behind us but that did not stop her. It took us six hours to finally see the You Are New Leaving LittleBrooke sign! I couldnt believe it. This place was not that big at all.
So listen, if youre invited to take a job in LittleBrooke. Dont take it. Its not worth your life.
submitted by Spectral42 to SpectralsMegaverse [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:30 Spectral42 Something strange is happening in LittleBrooke. Whatever you do, stay away.

If youre reading this I am begging you to believe me. Especially if you have children. My name is Leon and I have been investigating strange disappearances for four years. I am not an official investigator or a journalist. Before I started this whole thing I did not believe in ghosts or the paranormal. For me to believe in something I had to see it with my own two eyes! Everything had to be factual and everything had an explanation.
At least this is what I used to believe until my wife was murdered four years ago. They found her at work completely skinless. She was drained of blood and was missing all of her nails. They told me the precision required to accomplish this was not heard of yet. I waited months for answers and they never came, so I decided to go get them myself. I had no idea where to start or who to speak to so I went back to the store to try and dig up as much information as I could find.
Her manager eventually told me that she had gotten into a fight with a customer that day and that he assumed she went home on time. When her body was found in the employee break room he was shocked. He had no idea she was still in the building. He said he told me exactly what he told the police. I asked him if there was any footage of the man she was arguing with but he told me the security cameras were not working that day. I vividly remember wanting to punch this guy in his damn face. He was no help and I was determined to solve my wife's murder.
I ended up searching for the guy for months. I asked every one of her coworkers if they saw the argument and a couple of times I even had a run-in with the cops. They insisted that I should let them do their jobs and that they had everything handled. There was no chance I was going to listen to them. I had to take time off from my investigation to attend her funeral and make sure I got all of the preparations right. In hindsight, I was not growing properly and I really should've taken some time to reassess.
So fast forward another month and I finally get a lead. Something I assumed the cops didn't have, this meant I could finally get some answers before being stonewalled again. I ended up finding this guy, Will Brookes at a fucken motel off of the highway about three miles from where my wife worked. I waited for two days before I saw him leave his room to get ice. Once I knew what room to find him in I knocked until he opened the door. He was rightfully pissed but not as pissed as I was. It took every ounce of willpower in my body to not kill him on the spot.
Why did you kill my wife?! I snapped as I forced myself into the room and slammed the door behind me. He looked shocked.
I did not kill her! He screamed and tried to move around me. So I grabbed him by his shirt and slammed him into the wall next to the tv. This guy was not very heavy and not very strong. At that moment I was wondering how he could kill anyone.
You were the last person to be seen with her alive! I barked. I wanted to push his body through the wall. I wanted to crush him.
I was bringing her the papers she requested for a job offer she accepted in a place called LittleBrooke! The man said. He was shaking so I put him down and pushed him to the side. Show me the papers, I demanded. My wife had told me twice that she had gotten a new job offer. I was extremely excited! I work from home and would be happy to live wherever she wanted. All she had to do was say the word and we couldve left as soon as possible. But she never made it home to tell me the news.
I watched as the shaking man handed me a stack of papers and even a suitcase. Here, take it and please leave me alone! He shouted. Okay. I left the motel room and went right to my car. I put everything on the passenger seat and went home. Once I got there I sobbed in the driveway for over an hour before finally getting out and heading inside. I never got to see her body and I never got to say goodbye. Being in this house felt like I was walking into a damn shallow grave of sorts.
I went right to the master bedroom and packed up as many clothes as I could. I even took some of her favorite items, I dont know why. I took a couple of pillows and two blankets, and after that, I went around to search the rest of the house. Once I had finished in the master bedroom I went and grabbed all my items from the bathroom. After that, I went into the nursery. We were planning on trying to have a baby once she got her new job. I looked around the nursery and took some stuffed animals and blankets, nothing too crazy. I also made sure to grab our family photo album. Finally, I made sure to grab all of the savings from the jar we had plus anything I kept in the safe. I also made sure to grab our wedding video and once I had everything I thought I could need I left the house. On my way out I made sure to tell the building goodbye.
Once I got back into my car I decided to drive a bit. No way in hell was I going to the same motel as that guy so I drove until I hit a hotel far enough away from my house. I did not end up checking in though. Once I got close enough I backed up and just kept driving. I eventually hit a truck stop after a couple of hours and decided to rest my eyes for a while. I was exhausted and there were way too many questions rushing through my head. I knew if I kept driving in that state I would probably crash or something. After sleeping for four hours I decided it was time to look through the papers and figure out what I was going to do next. I took the first paper from the stack and started to read it. For the sake of time here I will only tell you guys what I found that was interesting.
Paper One: You have been accepted to work as a store manager! Please review your employee packet for more information.
So as I am going over this first paper a couple of things stick out to me. Whoever wrote this was trying not to be specific. The whole paper was one big announcement for a new store opening up in a place called LittleBrooke. There was no state mentioned anywhere on this paper, I would later find out that this place was supposed to be in Washington D.C.
I decided to dig around and eventually found the employee packet. She accepted a job at a mega-store called BrightMarketZ. I thought it was a pretty weird name but what stood out to me was what they were offering to pay her. $22.00 an hour! I couldn't believe it. No wonder she said yes and didnt bother to ask any questions.
Paper Twenty: To find LittleBrooke please enter [REDACTED] into your GPS device. You will be staying inside apartment 307. All rent for your first month in LittleBrooke is covered by your employer. Please note that all apartments are two-bedroom only. If you have a larger household please speak to Sydney May at Town Hall for bigger accommodations. After reading this I decided to just go to LittleBrooke and get answers. I was assuming that I would find out what the hell happened if I just went. I wanted to know what my wife died for and I wanted to know why this was some big secret in the first place. I went back to bed and as soon as the sun came up I put the information into my GPS and headed for LittleBrooke.

Year One in LittleBrooke

It took me three weeks to reach LittleBrooke and I could tell that something was wrong the moment I found the town. If I wasn't so damn desperate for answers I would've turned around as soon as I saw the library. The building itself wasn't big but the two huge lions on either side of the staircase gave me the creeps.
After that I passed a mechanic, the whole place looked run down as hell. There wasn't a single car to be seen but the sign said open. The man standing outside of the building waved to me so I gave him a slow wave back. He looked weird. At the time I couldnt place my finger on why but now I know its because he was not human.
The theater was kind of cool to look at in a vintage kind of way. They were not showing anything when I drove by and I made the decision early on to stay out of the theater altogether. After the theater, I saw a small building that said LittleBrooke Press. If anything else I figured I could write for the paper.
As I approached the apartment building a woman was standing outside. Her face was weird as hell. It looked like she had far too much plastic surgery like her face was threatening to pop at any moment. Hi, can I help you? she asked me. Her voice was shrill, it was gross to even hear her speak. It sounded like she was putting on a fake voice just to speak to me. Hi, my wife accepted a job offer. Unfortunately, she has passed away. I would still like to claim the apartment left to us. I can work at any place that currently has an opening. I offered.
LittleBrooke Press has space for two more writers! She smiled and handed me the keys to the apartment. She never asked my name and she knew exactly where I wanted to go. I thought it was weird but I didnt argue. Instead, I took the keys and thanked her. I spent that whole day getting settled into the new apartment. A couple of things, the front door had four different locks on it. I thought that was pretty weird. I also did not see or hear any other people until my third night in the apartment. I called the LittleBrooke Press about a potential job and they told me to email my submissions. There was no need for me to come in person and honestly, I liked this deal a lot.
For the first few months, I spent my time writing about whatever came to my mind. After that, I would send it in and get my money back. The editor never told me what to do and they never requested anything. It was sweet. As December rolled around I could feel myself slipping into a seasonal depression. At that point, I had made no progress in any of my investigations. I did not know the town well enough and frankly, I felt like I was wasting my time. That night I decided to check out the local bar. It was pretty hidden, you had to drive further into LittleBrooke to find it. Once I got there I was shocked! The place was packed. I sat down at the bar and ordered a drink.
The bartender was hot as hell, too hot. She was so even looking so perfectly symmetrical that it made me extremely uncomfortable. There wasnt a single hair out of place. So are you new in town? She asked me. Yeah, I just got here a couple of months ago. My now-deceased wife accepted a job offer here. I said bluntly and dryly. I wanted to finish my drink and go. It was like the bones in my body were screaming at me to leave. The woman looked shocked. Tell me, does that happen often? Do people accept a job offer in LittleBrooke and turn up dead a couple of days later? I hissed. It was a genuine question but she did not take it too kindly. She took my drink from my hands and told me to leave.
As I made my way back to my car I could hear someone coming up from behind me. I turned around as fast as possible and had to take three steps back. It was the bartender, but she did not look the same. Half of her face was weighed down like she had no bones at all. Her eyes were bulging out of her head. She gurgled at me. You need to leave! She finally snapped and swung her arm in my direction. I moved back before she could hit me. As her hand hit my car window it shattered like it was made of ice. I watched as her arm popped and clicked. I could see it slowly getting longer. Before I knew it her arm was dragging on the pavement! She lunged at me so I punched her in her stomach. She gurgled again and sunk her teeth into my jacket. I screamed for help as we hit the pavement. She was trying fucken eat me! I grabbed her by her hair and threw her backward as hard as I could. As I scrambled to my feet and looked at her I screamed again. Her skin was pulled back. Now hugging the bones on her face. Her eyes were completely exposed! I turned and dove into my car as fast as I could. I slammed the door behind me and sped out of the parking lot like a bat out of hell.
The next morning I received a letter under my door. Sorry, you had problems last night! Please accept our sincerest apologies. -Mayor Brookes. There was $300 included with the letter. Now, I thought about leaving but decided I had to stay. Something was going on here and I had to find out what. I removed my jacket to see if the woman had injured me, she didn't but the experience was still terrifying. For the first time in a very long time, I was scared. But I also felt closer to the truth than I have ever been before.

Year Two in LittleBrooke

I spent all of January writing about the women who attacked me. I even contacted the police. I quickly learned that the police were going to be completely useless. My editor never sent the story back so I had assumed it was published.
At the end of the month, I left to shop for some supplies. Let me tell you, the grocery store in LittleBrooke is something else. They dont have any brands youve ever heard of and at first, that drove me nuts. However, I quickly came to fall in love with the food here. It was comforting to have something to enjoy. Like always, I made sure to shop for two to three months at a time. Shopping was easy, I used the self-checkout to make sure I didnt have to speak to anyone.
Once I got home I put everything away and decided to look around the apartment building. My whole floor started with 301 and went all the way to 310. The first floor was 501 to 509. There was a technical second floor but none of the doors were labeled. It looked like someone was renovating the place.
I got to see some of my neighbors too. An older woman, two men, and I were living next door to a lady the whole time. I had never seen or heard from these people before. It seemed like everyone wanted to keep to themselves too. I wanted to try and talk to someone but every time I approached them they turned and walked away. For what it's worth they looked completely normal.
So I left the apartment building and ventured around the property. There were no other apartments anywhere close to the one I was staying at, or so I thought until I found one about thirty minutes away. It was so out of the way you wouldn't find it unless you were looking. Against my better judgment, I opened the doors to the building and walked right inside. The place smelled like rust and soot.
I went to explore the first floor and was shocked to find blood trails on the floor and the ceiling. I followed the trail and made sure to look at the numbers on each door. This floor was numbered 1-10. Most of the doors were locked and I wasnt going to try and knock anything down. I opened the door to apartment 10 and walked right inside. There was just enough light from the sun to illuminate the place. It looked like the whole place had been ransacked. I checked the tables and cabinets before heading into the bedroom. I searched the dresser and under the pillows before finally checking under the bed. When I looked under I spotted a black box. I grabbed it and that is when I got the feeling again. The hairs on the back of my neck stood up and I felt something sharp dig into my shoulders.
I screamed as loudly as I could, my face slammed off of the carpet and I clenched the box with one hand. Before I could figure out what the hell was happening I was tossed backward. I went into the bedroom door and rolled a couple of times until I reached the torn-up couch. I slowly lifted my head and to my horror what I was looking at was way too far from human to be real.
It looked like a dog ape thing. It was mostly skinless aside from some skin on its torso and face. The creature had thick, long claws and was standing on its hind legs. It barked at me. Its fangs were huge! I quickly scrambled to my feet and rushed out of the door as fast as possible. I could feel the blood running down my back. Never once did I consider letting this box go.
Help! I screamed as I burst through the apartment complex doors and started to run back to the main road. My heart was pounding, I could feel my chest getting tighter with each step. I could hear the beast behind me, it was screeching. I thought I was going to die for sure, there was no way I could continue to outrun this beast. Thats when I heard a car and before I knew it I could see it! A woman was waving me over, she was just up ahead! I had to push a little harder. I had to be just a little stronger.
When I felt the embrace of the car door I ripped it open and dove inside. She sped away and I looked out of the window. The beast did not follow us any further. Are you insane! She snapped at me. Thats the last thing I remember before passing out.
When I woke up I was laying on my stomach on an extremely comfortable couch. I could smell someone making pasta with meat sauce. My stomach was going insane. Everything hurt though, especially my back and my left side. I figured I had hurt my side when I was tossed across the room.
At this point, I did not dive into the box yet. I could barely move. Hi. I heard a woman say from the kitchen. Thank you, I replied before trying to sit up. I was so concerned that this woman would be another monster. When I saw her though I knew she was normal. She didn't look so damn perfect and that was a breath of fresh air.
What's your name? She asked me as I watched her prepare two bowls of food.
Leon, I said before closing my eyes. You heard me screaming? I asked her seriously.
I did. Im pretty sure everyone in our building did. You got hurt pretty badly, I did my best to patch you up. She paused and laughed. My name is Ashley.
So I ended up crashing at her place. During this time I tried to focus on recovering. Sleeping became hell, I was having constant nightmares. I also spent a lot of time working on articles. I ended up giving Ash the keys to my apartment so she could get my laptop. It was a big move to trust anyone here but I am glad I did.

Year Three and Four in LittleBrooke

During my recovery, I spent most of my time writing. I wanted to write about everything I have seen and experienced. I had a lot of questions and way too much time with my thoughts. Ash and I got to know each other too.
I told her about how my wife had died mysteriously. I eventually opened up about her being skinned and drained of her blood. Ash told me she had come to LittleBrooke with her older sister. Her sister went to work one day and never came back. She was working at the theater. Ash had told me that she was stuck here, she didnt feel right leaving with her sister still missing. Every time she would try the cops would meet her at the town line.
It was during this time that we both shared that we had never seen a police station. We talked about the monsters too. Her first run-in with one was at the grocery store. I told her about what happened to me at the bar. She told me that she heard rumors of the beast living beyond the apartments. The first time she saw it was when it was attacking me.
As I started to recover more we discussed a couple of things. First, the neighbors here suck. She could hear me screaming and came to help but no one else did. Second, neither of us has seen any families since we moved here. It was at this point I decided I wanted to leave and I offered to take her with me. We could both get out come hell or high water. She agreed but there was something I had to do first.
I showed her the box I had taken from the apartment.
You almost died for a box? Ash asked me. Yes, I said seriously.
I opened it and blinked. I found a picture of a girl with black hair and bright green eyes. It read, Stephanie. I found a missing persons report too. This girl had been missing a year before I got here. I decided that my last article would be about her. I had written about a couple of missing people before this. For example, the old lady in our building vanished and her apartment was rented out two days later.
I also found a badge inside the box. It read F.O.P.P. and there was a name! Jack Bridges. We tried to look up the organization's name but we came up empty-handed. I ended up writing the story about Stephanie and the next day Ash and I got packing. We decided to take my car since the cops know what hers looks like. I packed up the essentials all over again and we piled into the car.
We should check the other direction. Before we leave. I suggested. Ash knew about the bar already but neither of us knew what was beyond that point: This suggested changed the course of our lives forever.
So we started driving in the other direction. We passed the bar where the woman had tried to eat me, we passed a convenience store I didnt know this town had and we just kept driving. Eventually, I could hear Ash speaking to me, Holy shit! The police station. she pointed out. I couldnt believe it either. I did not stop driving though but I wish I did.
Eventually, we saw a sign that read, LittleBrooke High. Go Bears!
I started to slow down a bit until the school was in view. The place looked run down as hell. There were holes in the walls and leaves growing up the side of the building. The parking lot was massive and full of buses. I pulled the car into the parking lot and told Ash to get into the driver's seat.
Youre not serious? She asked me. I could tell she wanted to go but I said, This is it! This is the last place of note in this fucken town. Just take the wheel and I will be right back. I said as I jumped out of the car and went to look around.
As I approached one of the buses I grabbed the doors, they were already open a crack. I pulled them open and was hit with a horrible stench. I had to step back and puke and no I am not going to describe what I saw in that fucken bus. At that point, I decided I had seen enough and it was time to fucken go.
Help! I heard someone cry from a couple of buses over. Please! I heard again. I wanted to slap myself because I knew better. I had already decided it was time to leave but I went to investigate anyway. I went to the bus and pulled the doors open. It smelled like stale piss and blood. Back here! A girl screamed out to me. I made my way to the back of the bus, stepping on school jackets and over backpacks. That is where I found them. Two teenagers are tied to the leg of a bus seat. They looked horrible, caking in blood and sweat. They were both injured. Stephanie?! I exclaimed as I bent over to free them. I recognized her face the moment I saw it.
Can you move? I asked the blonde girl. As I started to let her go. Everything hurts. She told me. I opened the emergency exit and called for Ash to pull the car over. It took her a second to hear me but she came as fast as possible. I am going to get you guys in the car and we are going to get out of here, okay? I told them. I wanted to tell them everything was going to be okay, but I couldn't. It felt like that would be a huge lie.
Ash stepped out of the car and helped get the girls into the backseat. As I stopped to look around I could feel the bus shift in weight. I turned around and inhaled sharply. Standing before me was a creature wearing a jacket that said COACH on it. He looked sickly, and pale, and his veins were protruding from his face and hands. As he ran at me I jumped out of the emergency exit door just in time to feel something slam off of the back of my head. I looked down to see a barbed football. I could feel blood trickling down my neck, I stumbled forward and felt a hand grab my arm. Ash was shoving me into the car. She slid over me, closed the passenger door, and backed the car up. I thought she was moving like lightning.
At this point, everyone was screaming. My heart was threatening to jump out of my fucken chest. I was so sure we were all going to die here, just like everyone else I had seen on the buses. But no, Ash sped out of the parking lot. The coach chased us to the school limits but for some reason, he did not follow us anymore.
I know we should've stopped to see if the kids could find their parents but we didn't. Instead, Ash just kept driving. Eventually, we could hear the cops behind us but that did not stop her. It took us six hours to finally see the You Are New Leaving LittleBrooke sign! I couldnt believe it. This place was not that big at all.
So listen, if youre invited to take a job in LittleBrooke. Dont take it. Its not worth your life.
submitted by Spectral42 to nosleep [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:28 Live-Concentrate9307 Are there any owners of townhomes looking to rent

Hi all,
I am moving from Rosehill Alexandria and looking for a townhome in NOVA with a 3 bed/2 bath around $2300 - $2500.
submitted by Live-Concentrate9307 to novarent [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 16:25 Independent_Pin_4195 Looking for open spots at Tower5040 for two people

Hello, my brother and I are looking for housing spots at Tower5040 for this August. Preferably a two bed/two bath or four bed/four bath. Please send me a chat or dm if anyone has spaces available.
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2023.06.09 16:15 TheScribe_1 [The Book of the Chosen] - Chapter Thirteen - Bridge Over Swift Water (Part II)

Previous Chapter - Read 10 weeks ahead on Patreon - Read the story so far on Royal Road
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Chapter Thirteen - Bridge Over Swift Water (Part II)

The cottage beside the mill was not large, and its low ceilings were packed with all manner of cupboards, shelves, chairs and tables, pressed in against the walls in a maze of well-worn clutter. The result was a rather overcrowded space, and Ren was forced to take more care than usual so as not to bump into anything when they entered, but the hearth was broad, and the smell of cooking filled the air, so it did not take long to settle into a comfortable lull of pleasant talk around the table whilst they waited for their lunch. Ted's wife, a young, slender woman with dark, smiling eyes and shoulder-length fair hair, hurried about the fire busily, stirring and seasoning her pots with a methodical efficiency. A mug arrived for each of them (water for the boys, something stronger for Ted), and they talked for a time of small things, of the weather and the harvest, hoping for a mild winter, idle talk for idle minds. Even Trin seemed to have relaxed in the lazy firelight, though he was more quiet than usual. Ren thought of how scared he had been of the miller as a boy, remembering the fearsome man with his scarred neck and deep voice that had raked their dinner table at the farm with his dark eyes. It was a memory that fit the man beside him about as well as a childs boot might fit its fathers. He started to feel a little guilty for avoiding him, whenever he visited the farm.
Heard you were heading to Overwood, last week.
Ren blinked, looking up from the fire to find Ted watching him over his mug. He swallowed.
Took a cart to the market with grandfather.
How is the old goat?
Ren hesitated. Hes hes well.
Ted took a swig of his ale, not a little wistfully. Used to live up there, you know. Overwood, I mean. After the soldiering, when the Black Breath took my Da. Coughed up his own lungs, fore it got im. Always was a scrapper. Not easy, losing someone like that.
Ren swallowed, looking away, and the millers eyes softened.
Your Ma, too, boy, I know. Damn shame. he said apologetically, and Ren decided not to correct him. Long time before I came out here, anyways.
You fought in the war? Trin asked tentatively.
I fought in the rebellion, boy. Ted corrected him. Was only one King, back then.
Trin swallowed, looking at the floor.
But that was a long time ago now. Afore you were born, I reckon. Not a lot of work for soldiers in peacetime. Must have dug half the privies in Overwood before I earned the coin to up sticks.'
Earned? Werla snorted from beside the fire, cheeks dimpling. Swindled, more like.
Ren looked over at her. He had always thought her a little young for the old miller. He was well past forty, and with his weathered brow and ugly scar he was hardly an obvious match for a pretty young girl not long from twenty when they had wed a couple of summers back. He wondered, not for the first time, how they had fallen in together to begin with.
Now, don't be giving our guests the wrong idea. Ted told her, grinning, and the scar on his neck knotted. He turned back to the boys, holding up his hands earnestly. An honest game of chance, I swear it. Northerner, he was, didn't know dice from a pebble.
Ren and Trin both nodded sagely at his explanation, neither of them knowing one jot about dice, or gambling, or Northerners, for that matter. Werla swept to their rescue, appearing at the miller's shoulder and planting a kiss on his cheek.
Swindled. she said pointedly.
Ted smiled in spite of himself, shooing her away. She chuckled and turned back to the stew, humming softly to herself.
I hear theres a lot of new folk in town. Ted said, turning back to the boys. From up in the Stonelands.
Enough to notice. Ren replied, thinking of the unpleasantness on the road. He frowned. Unfriendly types.
Been a while since I made it over that way. Couple of winters back, now. He frowned thoughtfully, then smiled in Werlas direction. A lot can change in two years, though.
Werla looked up, flashing him a smile, then went back to her stew pot again, humming. The miller paused, scratching at his scar, then gave the boys a curious look. So, then. What brings you out this far?
Ren lowered his eyes, and Trin shifted uncomfortably beside him. Ted laughed, weathered face creasing into a smile.
Come now. he told them. Cant hardly turn you over to your grandfather from here, can I?
Ren swallowed. We were just out for a ride色
Mister Derin told us never to cross the bridge. Trin finished for him, scowling. He said it was too far from the farm. Not safe, he said. So of course thats exactly where Ren has to go. Well be in for it when we get back!
You didn't have to come, Trin. Ren told his friend patiently. He thought of his grandfathers old map, carved with rivers and mountains and cities in dark ink. The Swiftwater wasnt even big enough to merit a line, and the distance theyd travelled this morning wouldnt be more than a nails-breadth.
Well you didn't tell me where we were going. Trin replied, fidgeting nervously. His fingers twisted around a stray tear in his shirt, tugging at it. And besides... Hardly going to let you go running off on your own. Too risky. It's not safe this far from the farm, for you most of all, so they says.
Whos they? Ren asked, scowling.
Hector. Your grandfather. And Ma, too! Everyone!
Your Ma doesnt know everything, Trin.
Still a damn sight more than you!
Easy, boys. Ted was smiling, and his scarred neck twisted. I wager the north side of the river is much the same as this one.
Trin lowered his eyes, and his cheeks reddened. Ren thought of the shadows moving in the trees over the bridge, the way he had fallen when Ted had found him, and started to feel very foolish indeed. His thoughts had been dark, unpredictable, these past few days, since the trip to Overwood. He never had been a good sleeper, but his nights had been more restless than usual, too, his dreams a little thicker with shadows. Shadows with faces, and a hunchback with gold eyes to give them voice. Turning every doorway to the gloom of the fortunetellers tent, every flame the silver light of his brazier. He frowned at himself. Just rhymes and empty words. Best not to dwell on it.
Food's ready! Werla said suddenly from the fire, and a few moments later they had steaming bowls of fragrant brown stew sitting in front of them on the table. Ted carved up some slices of soft, pale bread for them to soak, and they set to eating it all in relative quiet for a time, content with good food and the soft warmth of the fire, and it was not long before all thoughts of the bridge, and the shadows beyond it, had gone entirely from Ren's mind. He found himself staring wearily into his cup, watching idly as the clear water rocked and rolled against the rim, listening to the rumble of the river outside.
Wont turn to ale just by looking at it. Ted told him, and he looked up to find the miller looking at him curiously, taking another mouthful of bread. Trin was still quite engaged in his food, and Werla was sipping her mug contentedly, pale hair brushed back behind her ears.
What?
Come, now, boy. Whats got you twisted? Ted asked, taking sip of his drink.
Ren hesitated. I was thinking about the market. He said after a moment, looking up. It was true enough.
Ah. Town ain't what it used to be. Ted looked at him thoughtfully for a moment, then began rubbing his thumb around the rim of his mug, staring at it. His young wife watched him with a slight frown. All these unsavoury types arriving. You hear the talk, even out here. City folk, some of them, and worse. Heard theres talk of Brothers abroad, up in the Westmere. Out in the open, again, like. He pressed harder against the mug, thumb turning white. Werla reached out and pulled his hand away, folding it in her own and meeting his eye. Ted frowned, squeezing her hand, and the ugly scar on his neck gleamed. Trin had stopped eating.
But the Westmeres a long way from here, and I aint one to be complaining. Got a good roof over my head, and a good living. A good woman, too, and might have a son of my own by next winter, Makers willing. He grinned at Werla, putting a hand to her belly, and she smiled, pulling it to her mouth and kissing it softly. Reckon Im a lucky man.
Ren smiled at them both, lowering his eyes.
Say hello to your folks, for me, boy. Tell your old man I better see his arse over here before the snows.
Some words of thanks, warm, earnest ones, and one or two more for goodbye, then they were homeward bound again, ponies snorting in the afternoon sun, promises of a return visit ringing in their ears. Ren was left with the distinct feeling that he had misjudged the old miller, scar and all. But it wasnt long before his thoughts turned towards the rumours he had imparted from the Westmere, his white knuckles pressed against his mug. To Hectors words in the shadow of the farm hill. To the ugly fortuneteller and his tent of oddities and silver fire. Words whispered in the dark. Hed not mentioned the encounter in the tent to anyone. Not even his grandfather. In truth, hed been doing his best not to think about it at all, without much success. He frowned, hunching over his saddle.
A mask on fire.
Neither of them spoke for a long while. Trin, for his part, was busy trying to subtly feed Pol the stash of small treats he had smuggled away from the cottage, glancing over at Ren occasionally to make sure he hadnt noticed. He had, of course, but there was little use in pointing it out.
Trin. Ren said once they had crested the hill, looking back towards the river-bound cottage in the distance. Trin started and stuck his hand quickly back into his pocket, hiding a scrap of bread.
What?'
You heard what Ted said? Ren asked. About Brothers?
Trin frowned. Suppose so.
Ren was still looking back the way they had come. 'What do you make of it?'
Reckon hes right. Trin shrugged. Westmeres a long way away.
He hesitated, frowning.
But Hectors been saying it for years. Overwoods not what it used to be. Strange folk coming and going by night. No safe place for good folk that side of the Swiftwater. Brothers or no.
Grandad says there havent been Black Hand this far south in years. Ren murmured, still looking back towards the river. Not since we were born, at least.
Wouldnt pay it any mind. Plenty to worry about without them. Trin told him, giving him a serious look. Youve been acting up more, these past few weeks. Ever since the old man came calling.
Have I? Ren scowled, shooting his friend a sideways glance.
You know what I think about him. Trin told him seriously. Cant be trusted, that one. And you cant be taking so many risks. Not with your Well, you know.
Your ma tell you that, too?
Dont make it wrong. Trin grumbled, turning away in his saddle and trotting off south over the crest of the hill. Ren waited a moment longer, frowning to himself, then followed him reluctantly. The sound of the river was long gone behind him, but he caught one final glimpse the gleaming water before he shook the reins and disappeared finally over the brow of the hill, bound for home.
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2023.06.09 16:14 TheScribe_1 [The Book of the Chosen] - Chapter Thirteen - Bridge Over Swift Water (Part II)

Read the story so far on Royal Road - Series Page - Read 10 weeks ahead on Patreon
*
Chapter Thirteen - Bridge Over Swift Water (Part II)
The cottage beside the mill was not large, and its low ceilings were packed with all manner of cupboards, shelves, chairs and tables, pressed in against the walls in a maze of well-worn clutter. The result was a rather overcrowded space, and Ren was forced to take more care than usual so as not to bump into anything when they entered, but the hearth was broad, and the smell of cooking filled the air, so it did not take long to settle into a comfortable lull of pleasant talk around the ta-ble whilst they waited for their lunch. Ted's wife, a young, slender woman with dark, smiling eyes and shoulder-length fair hair, hurried about the fire busily, stirring and seasoning her pots with a methodical efficiency. A mug arrived for each of them (water for the boys, some-thing stronger for Ted), and they talked for a time of small things, of the weather and the harvest, hoping for a mild winter, idle talk for idle minds. Even Trin seemed to have relaxed in the lazy firelight, though he was more quiet than usual. Ren thought of how scared he had been of the miller as a boy, remembering the fearsome man with his scarred neck and deep voice that had raked their dinner table at the farm with his dark eyes. It was a memory that fit the man beside him about as well as a childs boot might fit its fathers. He started to feel a little guilty for avoiding him, whenever he visited the farm.
Heard you were heading to Overwood, last week.
Ren blinked, looking up from the fire to find Ted watching him over his mug. He swallowed.
Took a cart to the market with grandfather.
How is the old goat?
Ren hesitated. Hes hes well.
Ted took a swig of his ale, not a little wistfully. Used to live up there, you know. Overwood, I mean. After the soldiering, when the Black Breath took my Da. Coughed up his own lungs, fore it got im. Always was a scrapper. Not easy, losing someone like that.
Ren swallowed, looking away, and the millers eyes softened.
Your Ma, too, boy, I know. Damn shame. he said apologetically, and Ren decided not to correct him. Long time before I came out here, anyways.
You fought in the war? Trin asked tentatively.
I fought in the rebellion, boy. Ted corrected him. Was only one King, back then.
Trin swallowed, looking at the floor.
But that was a long time ago now. Afore you were born, I reckon. Not a lot of work for soldiers in peacetime. Must have dug half the privies in Overwood before I earned the coin to up sticks.'
Earned? Werla snorted from beside the fire, cheeks dimpling. Swindled, more like.
Ren looked over at her. He had always thought her a little young for the old miller. He was well past forty, and with his weathered brow and ugly scar he was hardly an obvious match for a pretty young girl not long from twenty when they had wed a couple of summers back. He wondered, not for the first time, how they had fallen in together to begin with.
Now, don't be giving our guests the wrong idea. Ted told her, grin-ning, and the scar on his neck knotted. He turned back to the boys, holding up his hands earnestly. An honest game of chance, I swear it. Northerner, he was, didn't know dice from a pebble.
Ren and Trin both nodded sagely at his explanation, neither of them knowing one jot about dice, or gambling, or Northerners, for that mat-ter. Werla swept to their rescue, appearing at the miller's shoulder and planting a kiss on his cheek.
Swindled. she said pointedly.
Ted smiled in spite of himself, shooing her away. She chuckled and turned back to the stew, humming softly to herself.
I hear theres a lot of new folk in town. Ted said, turning back to the boys. From up in the Stonelands.
Enough to notice. Ren replied, thinking of the unpleasantness on the road. He frowned. Unfriendly types.
Been a while since I made it over that way. Couple of winters back, now. He frowned thoughtfully, then smiled in Werlas direction. A lot can change in two years, though.
Werla looked up, flashing him a smile, then went back to her stew pot again, humming. The miller paused, scratching at his scar, then gave the boys a curious look. So, then. What brings you out this far?
Ren lowered his eyes, and Trin shifted uncomfortably beside him. Ted laughed, weathered face creasing into a smile.
Come now. he told them. Cant hardly turn you over to your grandfather from here, can I?
Ren swallowed. We were just out for a ride色
Mister Derin told us never to cross the bridge. Trin finished for him, scowling. He said it was too far from the farm. Not safe, he said. So of course thats exactly where Ren has to go. Well be in for it when we get back!
You didn't have to come, Trin. Ren told his friend patiently. He thought of his grandfathers old map, carved with rivers and mountains and cities in dark ink. The Swiftwater wasnt even big enough to merit a line, and the distance theyd travelled this morning wouldnt be more than a nails-breadth.
Well you didn't tell me where we were going. Trin replied, fidget-ing nervously. His fingers twisted around a stray tear in his shirt, tug-ging at it. And besides... Hardly going to let you go running off on your own. Too risky. It's not safe this far from the farm, for you most of all, so they says.
Whos they? Ren asked, scowling.
Hector. Your grandfather. And Ma, too! Everyone!
Your Ma doesnt know everything, Trin.
Still a damn sight more than you!
Easy, boys. Ted was smiling, and his scarred neck twisted. I wa-ger the north side of the river is much the same as this one.
Trin lowered his eyes, and his cheeks reddened. Ren thought of the shadows moving in the trees over the bridge, the way he had fallen when Ted had found him, and started to feel very foolish indeed. His thoughts had been dark, unpredictable, these past few days, since the trip to Overwood. He never had been a good sleeper, but his nights had been more restless than usual, too, his dreams a little thicker with shad-ows. Shadows with faces, and a hunchback with gold eyes to give them voice. Turning every doorway to the gloom of the fortunetellers tent, every flame the silver light of his brazier. He frowned at himself. Just rhymes and empty words. Best not to dwell on it.
Food's ready! Werla said suddenly from the fire, and a few mo-ments later they had steaming bowls of fragrant brown stew sitting in front of them on the table. Ted carved up some slices of soft, pale bread for them to soak, and they set to eating it all in relative quiet for a time, content with good food and the soft warmth of the fire, and it was not long before all thoughts of the bridge, and the shadows beyond it, had gone entirely from Ren's mind. He found himself staring wearily into his cup, watching idly as the clear water rocked and rolled against the rim, listening to the rumble of the river outside.
Wont turn to ale just by looking at it. Ted told him, and he looked up to find the miller looking at him curiously, taking another mouthful of bread. Trin was still quite engaged in his food, and Werla was sip-ping her mug contentedly, pale hair brushed back behind her ears.
What?
Come, now, boy. Whats got you twisted? Ted asked, taking sip of his drink.
Ren hesitated. I was thinking about the market. He said after a moment, looking up. It was true enough.
Ah. Town ain't what it used to be. Ted looked at him thoughtfully for a moment, then began rubbing his thumb around the rim of his mug, staring at it. His young wife watched him with a slight frown. All these unsavoury types arriving. You hear the talk, even out here. City folk, some of them, and worse. Heard theres talk of Brothers abroad, up in the Westmere. Out in the open, again, like. He pressed harder against the mug, thumb turning white. Werla reached out and pulled his hand away, folding it in her own and meeting his eye. Ted frowned, squeezing her hand, and the ugly scar on his neck gleamed. Trin had stopped eating.
But the Westmeres a long way from here, and I aint one to be complaining. Got a good roof over my head, and a good living. A good woman, too, and might have a son of my own by next winter, Makers willing. He grinned at Werla, putting a hand to her belly, and she smiled, pulling it to her mouth and kissing it softly. Reckon Im a lucky man.
Ren smiled at them both, lowering his eyes.
Say hello to your folks, for me, boy. Tell your old man I better see his arse over here before the snows.
Some words of thanks, warm, earnest ones, and one or two more for goodbye, then they were homeward bound again, ponies snorting in the afternoon sun, promises of a return visit ringing in their ears. Ren was left with the distinct feeling that he had misjudged the old miller, scar and all. But it wasnt long before his thoughts turned towards the ru-mours he had imparted from the Westmere, his white knuckles pressed against his mug. To Hectors words in the shadow of the farm hill. To the ugly fortuneteller and his tent of oddities and silver fire. Words whispered in the dark. Hed not mentioned the encounter in the tent to anyone. Not even his grandfather. In truth, hed been doing his best not to think about it at all, without much success. He frowned, hunching over his saddle.
A mask on fire.
Neither of them spoke for a long while. Trin, for his part, was busy trying to subtly feed Pol the stash of small treats he had smuggled away from the cottage, glancing over at Ren occasionally to make sure he hadnt noticed. He had, of course, but there was little use in pointing it out.
Trin. Ren said once they had crested the hill, looking back towards the river-bound cottage in the distance. Trin started and stuck his hand quickly back into his pocket, hiding a scrap of bread.
What?'
You heard what Ted said? Ren asked. About Brothers?
Trin frowned. Suppose so.
Ren was still looking back the way they had come. 'What do you make of it?'
Reckon hes right. Trin shrugged. Westmeres a long way away.
He hesitated, frowning.
But Hectors been saying it for years. Overwoods not what it used to be. Strange folk coming and going by night. No safe place for good folk that side of the Swiftwater. Brothers or no.
Grandad says there havent been Black Hand this far south in years. Ren murmured, still looking back towards the river. Not since we were born, at least.
Wouldnt pay it any mind. Plenty to worry about without them. Trin told him, giving him a serious look. Youve been acting up more, these past few weeks. Ever since the old man came calling.
Have I? Ren scowled, shooting his friend a sideways glance.
You know what I think about him. Trin told him seriously. Cant be trusted, that one. And you cant be taking so many risks. Not with your Well, you know.
Your ma tell you that, too?
Dont make it wrong. Trin grumbled, turning away in his saddle and trotting off south over the crest of the hill. Ren waited a moment longer, frowning to himself, then followed him reluctantly. The sound of the river was long gone behind him, but he caught one final glimpse the gleaming water before he shook the reins and disappeared finally over the brow of the hill, bound for home.
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2023.06.09 16:02 Ill-Hall2691 If You are on the edge about getting Xreal Air sunglasses

First of all amazon.jp switch to english mode and You can get them straight from Xreal (prob with more reliable direct to manufacturer warranty) plus for only $319 waaaaayyy cheaper!
Impressions when I got my Xreal Airs after doing tons of research and concluding these were the best buy by far. (After all there is a reason they are the best selling consumer glasses) If the other companies were truly as life changing as nreal they would eat up market share very quickly as people impressed their friends with them. Or many Youtubers did particularly raving reviews on them.
These go beyond anything You can imagine the 1080p people say is underestimating by FAR the superior resolution of this screen to anything in any of our houses! These are brighter sharper oled than my iphone 13 pro max in a 130 inch truly screen.
On top of that these glasses being Tuv certified allow You to wear all day or close to bedtime and still sleep soundly. Without a problem. Getting waaaay less blue light than Your phone. Even if You use for a long time before bed.
Like s23 level sharpness on 130 inch screen with full attention from You like a horse with blinders haha. Your full attention is being transfered to a different world in music, entertainment, media consumption.
Add ons from etsy enable full Vr. For like 20$ plus changing lens.
This beam will change things
I hear if You have samsung You can have like five screens open at a time. Seeing through. Makes people love doing dishes, chores, etc!!!
Better invention than Tvs This inevention is more lifechanging than tv. No more holding a brick and looking at the screen on it.
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2023.06.09 15:59 notyourlocalguide I can't stand my bf's best friend

Looking for some similar / worse / funny situations (or anything else if you're bored) bc I kinda need to laugh at this situation or I'll cry hahaha.
My boyfriend and I (early twenties) are doing Erasmus together this year. We live in a little rented room together which is just big enough for the both of us.
His best friend came to visit this week and I am beyond stressed. Normally she's ok to be around, she's kind and a genuine good person and fun, and I'm really glad that they have each other. If we meet up for some hours its all good. But she's too much for me to actually share my space or live with. She's too energetic and talkative and I'm just the chillest person in the world.
She's sleeping in our bedroom in the floor. I have some issues so I always sleep butt naked (which I won't change bc she's here but it's kinda weird). She's obviously with us the whole day. I have finals next week and the week after that and I'm trying to focus on my studies, but it's hard with her constantly putting on music/ talking. When they go out its kind of ok but I also kinda miss my normal life together with my boyfriend bc when we're both studying I feel more concentrated. Yesterday I just went to study to a friend's bc I was overwhelmed. Obviously no sex this week, no privacy, if I'm stressed I can't just lay in bed and cry bc she's there, can't talk about our stuff because she will literally participate.
Yesterday my bf and I had a pretty huge disagreement and she literally started saying shit like "I feel you're being unjust at the moment and you're only looking at your own stuff...". I was literally like girl I'm not talking to you, realize you're in MY house. (I was Not being unjust)
She talks about her stuff alllll day and needs me to participate too. Sometimes my boyfriend just ignores her (bc he's used to it) and I'm left feeling rude as fuck if I also ignore her but also annoyed as fuck if I have to listen to her rant for an hour.
Honestly it's been 4 days and I just want her to leaveeeeeee and I still have 3.5 more days left. I want to disappear. Usually would rant to my bf but obviously I won't. So here I am on Reddit 不
ps. idk if someone would suggest this but I'm not worried at all about her liking my man or anything like this there's nothing fishy happening just pure annoyance at her strong personality
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2023.06.09 15:35 DudeDogDangle Am I ahead to still glass bed?

Am I ahead to still glass bed?
Recently pillar bedded my Ruger M77 MKII. Upon initial inspection it appears I had some spill over into where the action sits, where youd glass bed the action. Basically, am I still gonna benefit from a complete action bed after what I have here? Or did I kinda get two for one?
Or maybe just bed in front of the recoil lug perhaps? I know most instructions recommend bedding from the mag well and beyond.
Thanks
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2023.06.09 15:05 new2thisNov2021 Anybody else have genetic diseases they never knew they had till too late?

I just read an article about chronic disease or illness fakers. I am thoroughly disgusted that even more people are more ignorant than I thought possible beyond my immediate family.
Right before the age of 40 I passed out waiting for a table at a nice restaurant, slowly drinking a beer. Luckily I had not been a heavy, medium, or even light drinker for almost 10 years. All I really had physically wrong with me at that time was testosterone therapy, come shoulder surgeries, and chronic,sometimes horrible pain. Oh, I was also told I had a great, really great bronze California tan.
After that incident right before age 40 I had every test I could have done to explain what happened. Witnesses said, im 6'3 195+ lbs, I just turned white, became instantly soaking wet, and fell straight backwards like a 2x4.
After all the tests were completed I discovered my Iron(its really called ferratin) was at a level of 3,900 (normal safe levels are 50 to 200 roughly. I was given a genetic test for hemachromatosis, which is pretty common, and not a super big deal when treated early. In fact, anyone with hemachromatosis cam firmly state that we people,all people, black, while, whatever are related. Black people have a genetic disease called sickle cell disease. If not treated and allowed to run rampart sickle cell turns into hemachromatosis. Nuff said.
The main treatment for hemachromatosis is bloodletting, the amount of blood you need to get out of your body and how much at a time and how often is usually dictated by the level of your ferritin in your blood at time of diagnosis. Most people, fortunately, get detected and treated by 700 to 1500 level of Ferratin. The body is basically killing itself, "rusting away" to say at levels if 1,000 plus of ferritin.
Now five leads later, testosterone implants every 3 months or so, bloodletting (phlebotomy) treatment 4 times a year now ( I started giving over 550 grams of blood 2 times a week for 4 months, and then once a week 4 or 5 months, and so on and on. I have had a pretty extensive cervical neck surgery, cages, holes drilled in arthritic areas and nerve openings opened up, both hips totally replaced, a knee replacement on left knee coming up soon, always a pain in my ass,, literally,, lol. There's other things, I have to get liver biopsies every year, heart tests performed every year, no alcohol, low Vtamin C diet, no more liver and onions, and reduced use of cast iron and other high iron cooking and eating utensils.
Thing is,, if you see me just see me, you'll see a big, strong, agile, balanced man. But what you dont see is how hard it is for me to just get up and drink a cup of coffee some mornings, or how bad both legs ache, hurt, throb, and sometimes especially feel totally exhausted 2 hours after I wake up. Or a serious neck, nerve issue that I just keep massaging and turning my head.
I don't take opiates, except after surgeries, I can't take much Tylenol or ibuprofen and related. Mostly ice pack/machine, heat pads, hot hot bath soaks, stretching (carefully), keeping moving, and pushing myself everyday or at least 6 days a week harder than the day before.
I have half siblings, 17+ years older than me, with bone spurs, maybe knee replacement, obesity related issues, lack of movement/ exercise issues, and on and on.
I'd happily trade places with them, but keep my age, and very few people I imagine get what I'm about to say next . I decided after the first 6 months of diagnosis I was going to "break and fall apart before I rusted and rotted away".
Do you get that? Understand ? I am happy, no I get exited and thrilled inside when I see people with obvious issues, obesity, laziness, bad diet, drinking, etc struggle, not do, or unwilling to do things they should do, much less want to do to make this life more,, make this life better for themselves. I say F' u all those ignorant dumb lazy scared people that say things, think things, act differently when they interact with you, not knowing you closely and really knowing you, when they see this person that looks, moves, and does lots of physical things better than they can,, and they think your faking or putting on or playing poor pity party me,,, no screw you guys,, try, literally walking 10,000 or more steps in my shoes each day and more, yet sometimes not able to even crawl or move for 2 or 3 hours after 4 or 5 or less some days just living life.
Anyone else have similar stories ? Or experiences? I still can't get over the fact that had a been a normal,, or whatever you call a person who drinks a six pack a week, alcoholic drinker I would definitely for sure have had cirrhosis or liver cancer by now for sure and probably be dead. Anyway,, let me know thanks.
P
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2023.06.09 15:01 AutoNewspaperAdmin [Top Stories] - Here's where a possible sale of Bed Bath & Beyond and Buy Buy Baby stands NBC

[Top Stories] - Here's where a possible sale of Bed Bath & Beyond and Buy Buy Baby stands NBC submitted by AutoNewspaperAdmin to AutoNewspaper [link] [comments]


2023.06.09 14:55 kiplet1 [City of Roses] no. 27.3: Quite distressing well as She might taking Any hand Something falls

[City of Roses] no. 27.3: Quite distressing  well as She might  taking Any hand  Something falls
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tends to crumble
Quite distressing, says the older man, there in the wingback chair. Though one does not wish to play the churl. A certain degree of disarray must certainly be allowed, given the shocks the challenge, the duel
Allowed? says Agravante, there by the yellow stone fireplace, an elbow up on the mantel, and the older man takes a sip of milky tea from a thin bone china cup. How is the Kings champion, by the way? he says.
Deaths door, says Agravante. There on the mantel by his elbow a fiendish little basket-box, carved from a chunk of dark red wood. Shame, says the older man, shaking his head, stiff grey curls swept back, and the collar of his shirt undone, a blue scarf knotted tidily about his throat. Though it is distasteful, how they might linger, on that threshold? Neither here, nor there, and another sip of tea.
What is it that distresses you, Medardus, says Agravante. White-gold locks tied neatly black, his grey suit shot with blue.
Its a delicate question Id have answered, Pinabel, says the older man, setting the cup in the saucer on his lap, clink. Does the King yet mean to pursue his bold vision?
Agravantes brow pinches. Of course, he says. Insofar as I know.
Medardus smiles. Delicately put, he says. Its been two days.
These things take time.
Two days, says Medardus, since he took from me mine offer, knobbled fingers closing in a fist, drawn up by his yet-mild smile. And not a word said since.
Theres much to be considered, says Agravante. Four of you do vie for her hand.
Please, Pinabel, says Medardus, dropping his hand, and a clatter of cup and saucer. Its an indulgence to pretend the choice isnt manifestly clear that mine is not the best offering.
The best, perhaps, says Agravante. But sufficient? A slatey shoulder shrugs.
The King would demand more?
How can I answer that, says Agravante, when I know nothing of what youve promised, or he might require.
Nothing, says Medardus, still smiling. Such a delicate word. Setting cup and saucer on the low table between them. I would hope, he says, it could always be said that the Hound has done well by Medardus, and he knots those knobby fingers in his lap. Much as it can be said, to a surety, that Medardus has done well by the Hound.
Rather carefully, Agravante does not smile at that, or nod, his shoulders do not move, nor does his arm, there by the basket-box. Of course, he says.
But its also said, says Medardus, that a fear grips your court: that the line is not unbroken. That the Queen, despite her, prodigious recovery, has no Bride of her own. That your Kings hand, howsomever reluctantly, is forced. That he means, and here Medardus leans forward, elbows on knees, to take the Princess for himself, and that is why our offers go unanswered. Sitting back, a dismissive fillip of his fingers. Or so its said.
By some, says Agravante.
Indeed, says Medardus.
But not to me, says Agravante.
Ah. Medardus pushes himself to his feet. Tell me, he says, as Agravante leads him out of the little drawing room, how fares the Count?
Grandfather? says Agravante, pushing open the sliding wood-paneled door. He sleeps. Beyond, a narrow hall, in the shadow of a long straight staircase.

Oh, he says. Its you. A glass of wine in his hand, something dark. She isnt here.
She will be, soon enough, says Marfisa, muddy boot up on the side porch step. Jason, can I just, wait inside? The collar of her sheepskin coat turned up, loose white hair stirred by a gust. He steps back, the door held open, his lips a sour purse between his mustache and his dull red beard.
Up the steps into a mud room, painted blue, forgotten coats and a tangle of umbrellas, a scooter, a chalkboard palimpsested with to-dos and shopping lists, Ah ah, hes saying, pointing, thick-lensed glasses blanked out by the ceiling light, and she scrubs her boots against a mat before stepping up into a kitchen to the left there, ruddy stove and a steaming pot of something, stainless steel refrigerator hung about with coupons and note cards, a calendar, a math test festooned with red checks and gold stars, past a breakfast bar sloppily piled with newspapers and a box of soda cans, into a narrow sitting room, a low brown couch, a girl tucked at one end of it, under a red and yellow blanket, and pink headphones startling against her dark hair, watching something on the tablet on her lap. Grace, says Jason, still in the kitchen, but shes already snatching off the headphones, a burst of chirpy music, as Marfisa steps about the low coffee table. Hey, Mar, says the girl on the couch, and Grace, says Jason again, upstairs, as Marfisa sits herself at the other end. Something bulkys tucked in her coat, she leans over the table, pulling it out, a flat paper sack that spills out a sheaf of handbills, goldenrod pages splashed with black lines, a dancer rendered in calligraphy, and each marked by the green dot of an eye. Oh, hey, says the girl, springing from under the blanket, all elbows and knees and clattering headphones, is that, says Jason says Grace! again, but shes already scooped up a handbill, turning it over and back again, nothing else to it but little pull-tabs at the bottom, each printed with an elaborately arabesqued question mark. Youre putting these up?
Marfisa shrugs. Youve seen them?
Yesterday, at Mississippi Pizza? says Grace. Did you hang em there? Marfisa shrugs again. The Mercury just had a thing about these things, like how nobody knows what they are, or whos, its, its you! Youre doing it! Is it like, are you putting the band back together?
Grace, says Jason.
What, snaps Grace, rolling her eyes away.
Upstairs, he says, now. Flashcards till dinner.
Jason, she says, but shes kicking off the couch, scooping up the tablet, stomping around the table when back that way theres a clatter and a squeak of hinges from that side porch, Im home! cries someone, and Carol! cries Grace, turning on a dime, scampering off past Jason, through the kitchen, Guess whos here!
Marfisa leans forward, slipping the handbills back in the sack, not looking up at Jason looking down at her.
And theres Carol, by the breakfast bar, setting a brown leather book bag on the carpet. Draped in a brown and yellow striped serape, her dark hair neatly short. Mar, she says. How are you.
Well as I might, says Marfisa, looking up, pushing back a wave of white-gold hair. What would you say to a chance to sing again, together?

A hallway narrow, dim, dark doors to either side, silvery numerals set in the walls by each, slender 1s, a wiry 7, great round-bellied 6es, an 8, a 9. Iona in her yellow track suit leads the way around a corner, stops before the door at the end of the hall. 620, the numerals beside it. She plucks a white card from a pocket, holds it up before slipping it into the slot above the knob. I miss keys, she says, as the lock chunks, a green light flicking on. These may be better, but not in any way that matters. She opens the door. Go on, she says.
Within brown walls and gold, bathed in daylight hazed by yellow curtains drawn over corner windows. A comfortable yellow chair, a reading table and a lamp, unlit. A wide bed draped in blue and brown and at the foot of it, sat tailor-fashion, Ysabel, in a white chemise, and soft white leg-warmers thickly rumpled. Starling, she says, with a smile.
My Queen, says the Starling, a shadow there by yellow Iona, black jeans, black sweatshirt, the hood of it up. This is not our usual Thursday, she says, in not much more than a whisper.
This isnt a Thursday, says Ysabel, nodding to Iona, who steps out, closing the door behind her. This is a whole weekend, if youd like.
But I must dance, maam, says the Starling. Today and tonight, at the club, and Saturday
It has been cleared, with your, manager, says Ysabel. Youre free, till Monday.
Free to be here, with you, says the Starling. And then, If its just to be the two of us? Her words worn thin.
If youd like, says Ysabel. Or, step back through that door. The Chariot will happily take you anywhere in the city you may wish to go.
The Starling reaches for the strap of the black gym bag slung from her shoulder. I dont mind, she says, being with you. Ill just go change, but No, says Ysabel, quickly, Starling, no. Put that down. Sit with me.
My Queen, says the Starling. I am not who I am, when Im with you.
Please, says Ysabel. Sit.
The gym bag slumps to the speckled brown carpet. Stepping over, the Starling stands a moment before the foot of that bed, and Ysabel sat there, smiling up, but then she turns, the Starling, and finds the yellow chair behind her, and sits, a darkness in that weak light.
Im glad you came, says Ysabel.
My Queen desired it, says the Starling.
I thought, says Ysabel, looking away. Id thought today that I might dance for you. I have danced, you know. At a party. She said I was quite good.
Of course, says the Starling.
I settled on an outfit, says Ysabel, looking down at herself, nothing too elaborate, and Good, says the Starling, but, says Ysabel, Ive been flummoxed by my lips. What should the color be? A hand, lifted to her mouth, her hair, White? she says. To go with the ensemble? Or would that be too much? Would a simple red be enough?
No one pays attention to the lipstick, says the Starling.
You do, says Ysabel, quickly, even sharply, and then, You take such care, with yours.
That hood shifts, down, to one side, dim light passing over her chin, the tip of her nose. Whites better for the stage, she says. Too bold for such close quarters.
A simple red it is.
Your majesty is sad, says the Starling, then. Why should that be?
I, says Ysabel, shoulders lifting, and her chin, a retort swelling but then suddenly pricked, deflating, and she looks away. Affairs of the city, she says.
Not the heart, then? says the Starling. Nor the hips?
Ysabel untucks herself, a bare foot lowered to the carpet, and her hands on the edge of the bed. Tell me, she says. Do you know the smell, of blood?
That shadow sits up. I do, maam, says the Starling.
She sleeps, Ysabels saying. Peacefully. Her wound is poulticed with a fiefs portion. The bleedings long since stopped, but, and she takes in a deep breath, shivering at the top of it, a sigh, wherever I go in those rooms I still can smell it, that tang, like an armor hot from the sun, and I, but the Starlings standing, stepping over, she kneels at the foot of the bed, reaches for a hand that Ysabel lifts away, here I am, she says, holed up in a hotel across town.
The Starling sits back on her heels. Would you rather go to her? but Ysabels shaking her head, The Mason, she says, watches over her. She wants for nothing. I am, but then she stops, and the Starling catches her hand, draws it down, covers it with her own. Ysabel says, My brother once told me, but then she stops again, blinking rapidly, looking down at the Starling looking up from under her black hood. He was once a little boy, says Ysabel. Did you know that?
The King, says the Starling, yes, maam, of course. I remember those days.
Not even a Prince, just an infant, he came to me, in the little garden, and took my hand, and asked me, sister, why are you crying? Turning her hand in the Starlings hand, taking hold of it, squeezing. And I said, because I do not wish to wed. But I am the Bride, I said, and one day a King will come, and I must take his hand. Whether I will or no, I must, but he, looking away, he swore to me, then and there, most earnestly, that he would one day be the King, that I might never need take anyones hand.
The Starling says, And he did just that.
My brother, says Ysabel, the King, this, and her eyes close, the lashes of them shining, city, she says, and her mouth closes about another, unsaid word, she swallows, and a lick at her lips. Jo, she says.
My Queen, says the Starling. I will go, and change, and dance for you, to take your mind, but No, says Ysabel, leaning forward, her hands on the Starlings shoulders, do not change, do not dress, do not perform, lifting a hand, right to the very hem of that hood, but then pulled back, withdrawn. I would see you just as you are, she says, her hands once more in her lap.
But, my lady, says the Starling, and she reaches up to draw back that hood. I am always as I am. Black hair uncurled, slicked back, clipped down to stubble along her temples, about those ears. Her cheeks, the line of that jaw. The nose. Those eyes, only a hazeled hint of green. Thin lips unpainted, upturned, parting as Ysabel leans close to say, And you are with me, and then a feathery kiss, tugging at the Starlings hands, lifting, the Starling who stands up before her, and her hands fall to the Starlings hips, rough black denim, the belt loops, her thumb, the wide leather belt, looking up, those green eyes. She yanks at the bulky black sweatshirt, Get this off, she says, and the Starling lifts it up and off and tosses it aside. Bare now from the waist up, and the torso of her lean and long, and her long arms sinewy lowering, curling, Ysabels darkly hands caught up against the smooth pale chest of her by those wide white hands, and the backs of them snarled with thick blue veins.
Now would you have me go and change? murmurs the Starling.
But you are beautiful, says Ysabel, slipping her hands free, reaching for the tongue of the belt. The buckle jangles. Majesty, says the Starling, I am many things, but, and a gasp, at the kiss pressed there below her shadowed navel, as those black jeans loosen, lop, as Ysabels fingers dip within to uncurl a palely slender cock, and a stroke for the lengthening lift of it, oh, says the Starling, my Queen, you neednt, as her hand cups Ysabels face.
But do you want me to, says Ysabel, and the Starling, shivering, nods. The principles, I should think, says Ysabel, are essentially the same? And a lick of a kiss for the tip of it, there on her palm.

Pinned to the pole a mulching bark of posters, flyers, handbills, postcards, lapped and shingled one over another, rain-dimpled, sun-faded, twisted, torn, defaced, Thrash or Die, April Showers Burlesque, Snap! at the Holocene, Anodyne Presents, Missing Dog, Laughing Horse, Drum Circle Saturday Rain or Shine, Cinco de Mayo on the Waterfront, big black letters on an enormous sheet, Grupo Samurjay, Grupo Maravilla, Los Supremos de Los Hermanos Flores, Woodburn Rocks. As the bus pulls away shes pushing back her black hair looking up toward the top of that slithery bristling treeline, there where handfuls of old notices have been ripped away leaving crowded dozens of denuded staples, glinting, by a metal sign that says No Parking This Block, a relatively fresh sheet of goldenrod paper, mad black scribbles limning a dancer, a single eye of bright green ink. She reaches up, to the pull-tabs fluttering the bottom of it, each printed with only an elaborately arabesqued question mark. Her other hand holds fast a black leather knapsack slung from the shoulder of her slick black jacket. Her glasses with thick black frames. With a sudden yank she rips the handbill down.
A broad porch with four front doors set one right next to another, and she unlocks, slips through the third of them, and up an immediate steep staircase, narrow between dark walls, unlit, that yellow page bright in her hand. Around the wall at the top of the stairs through an open room a couch the floor before it piled with cardboard boxes into a long hall once painted white, some time ago, lit by daylight seeping in from somewhere else. At the end of it a dark room, curtains drawn, and she closes the door behind her, a shadow in the shadows. Flump of the knapsack, dropped to the floor, creaking footstep, the thick click of a switch. Light blares from naked bulbs in the fixture in the middle of the ceiling, pink springs from the walls all whorled curlicues and faded bouquets, the bed there, skewed bedclothes striped dull brown and beige, and on the floor at the foot of it a great conical pile knee-high or more of gleaming golden dust.
She steps around it, jacket half-unzipped. A ridge of the pile has settled, slumped, dust trailed over the floor away from it, and the goldenrod poster drops, crumpled, from the hand shes lifting to her throat, to the bit of black lace tied there. Steps back, around the bed. She grabs a little hand broom from the nightstand. Kneels down by the pile. Begins to sweep up the goldstuff, careful with each thread and grain.

Eyelids a-twitch, lips parting just to say not even a whisper, maybe a number, counting, nine or ten, eleven, those lids blink open over mud-colored eyes that swivel, narrow, try to focus, a gleaming edge there, mirror-bright, shifting as she blinks the length of it flat and smooth and slender, somehow deep within it coiling whorls of light and dark chased up and down a shallow groove that cleanly stretches up and up to a glittering net there on the pillow, wiry strands that knot a cage about a simple hilt she jerks away, kicks back sitting up, Shit, she says, as the swords tangled in the sheets, teetering at the edge of the futon. Shes bent over, thin white T-shirt, wine-red hair, rubbing her shin, a thin dark line of blood beading down by her ankle, Shit, she says, again. Snatching the hilt she whips the blade free from the sheets, this fucking, but it turns in her hand, a wrench and away it flies across the room to crack and a wibble its stabbed the white wall there by the plain black scabbard, hung from a nail, and the painted skull-mask also, the mane of it stirred by that thrust. Jo blinks. Okay, she says, to herself.
Without, the hallways dark, the little lights strung along the ceiling unlit. The kitchen beyond is empty, only glancing daylight and shadows. Jo leans over to knock at the door across the hall, Ysabel? she says, turning the knob. The room within all yellow and white, gauzy curtains, big bed neatly made, the armoire shut, and nothing draped over the dressing screen in the corner. Ysabel? says Jo again, but something, she looks down. Something lightly, barely there, faintly wisps, like down, like ash, falling from, brushing her foot, past her knee, caught there in the hem of her T-shirt, falling from, she lifts it, peering down at her belly beneath, and the line that climbs it packed with an ashen crust and a last few spangles of gold and, she touches it crumbling, flaking away, the pink skin taut beneath.
Back against the jamb. Dropping the hem of the shirt her hand to her breast, and quick wincing shallow breaths. Lurching up across and over to the dresser, a bouquet of heavy-headed peonies pink and yellow, she grabs a small brass box and pries it open, frees a cigarette, and a ragged book of matches.
The hall, the back room, dark, the back door and out, outside, out in the grass, under the sky, sunlight and blue sky, and glowering clouds behind, white and blue and grey and blue and greenly black, swollen with the coming rain. Fitting the cigarette to her lips but even as she opens the matchbook shes falling to her knees in the lushly green, soft grass out to the parapets to either side, and she coughs up a sob, another, doubled over on her shaking shuddering self, her hand a fist to her chest.
The cigarette falls white to the grass before her. Feathers of grey-white ash caught about it, and sparks of gold.
A call behind her, muffled by walls and doors. Sitting up she catches, holds her breath. Swallows. A slam back there, distant, bump of a footfall, she wipes her eyes with the back of her hand and leans forward getting her feet under herself but the back door bangs open boot-thump someone shouting and she springs up turns her arm flung out the sword
The sword in her hand
Her hand, her arm extended shoulder dropped her torso sidelong and her front foot planted, off leg leaned back straight and true, off hand slung back to balance the thrust thats ended sword-tip snagged in a corner of his unzipped shortwaisted jacket yanked up one side hes twisted, turned away from it, both arms flung up and alarm gently folding his face.
Oh God, says Jo, dropping the blade, the ring of it soft on the grass.
Youre awake, says Luys, lowering his arms. Brushing the front of his soft brown jacket, his finger finding the hole punched there. Your coat, says Jo, Im so, sorry, but No sin espinas, hes saying, almost to himself, holding out a hand, You are awake, he says, but she rushes past that hand to crash into him tumbling her arms about him there on the rooftop under the clouds, shes kissing his throat and then as he lowers his head she looks up to kiss his mouth, his mouth.
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2023.06.09 14:49 anon1437182 Why is the price not moving? There is no volume on this friday premarket and we are down -9%

Did we all get trapped by the bears?
I was green and even averaged up again to $0.23 and now it seems like a bad investment going to 0.
https://www.ls-tc.de/de/aktie/bed-bath-beyond-aktie
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2023.06.09 14:47 PetraNik Cb2 Discount Code 15% off Cb2 coupons Cb2 Promo Cb2 15% off code Cb2 2023 discounts

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2023.06.09 14:45 girl_from_the_crypt Stuck on earth and looking for a job: Fog dimension

So I guess newsreaders can hide their emotions really well on TV. Ive never seen Mary Markov in any state of heightened temper. The time she came down to help after Id burned down the FunFlair building with Frankie was definitely a first in that regard. Then again, Id never committed arson before either, so there were a lot of firsts that night. Its been two days, but I can still see her angry face before me when I close my eyes. It frightened me a little.
After the fire had been doused by her staff, she gave Fran and me a look unlike anything Id ever seen before. There was a homicidal rage in her eyes, her mouth had turned into a thin, steely line and the vein on her forehead threatened to pop. To my surprise (and admittedly relief), she turned the entirety of that wrath against Frankie Preston. What in the world were you thinking? she thundered, looming dangerously over the shorter man. You committed a goddamn crime! If you were a normal person, Id have to get you behind bars now!
Wait, Im the privileged one here? he snapped. That woman tortured me! She brought me into this world by fault and proceeded to make me wish Id never been born! And there was nothing I could ever do about it, because, oh, thats right, Im not a normal person! As you so endearingly put it. No one has a fucking clue what I am, so its okay for me to suffer, isnt it?
Mary opened her mouth to respond, but only ended up shutting it again. Then she focused her scrutiny onto me. I thought youd have known better.
Im sorry for the inconvenience, but I knew what I was getting myself into. This was a contemplated decision.
Was it ever.
I motioned for her to step aside with me, bringing a bit of distance between ourselves and my waiter. Ill make it up to you, I began. I will, but please, please drop this.
Did he force you to come?
You dont actually believe he could force me into anything, do you?
Mary Markov sighed. I guess not. Look, its not like I dont understand his grudge. And from what I know of Ms Wallis, she wont be missed by many. I just wish it didnt have to come to this. This means a ton of work for me.
It means so much more to him.
Another sorrowful moan. Then, Alright. I have your back. But dont, um encourage this kind of behavior in him, please.
I wont, I promised. What are you going to do about the other doll?
Shes in bad shape
Trash shape, Fran chimed in from behind, having inconspicuously strayed closer.
Shes in bad shape, Mary repeated, pointedly ignoring him, and currently unresponsive, but since you said shes shown signs of sentience, I guess well have to look into her. It prompts a very interesting question, after all.
Being? I offered.
Think about it. I dont know if youre familiar with the other two living dolls, Zion Boyd and Bunny Martell, but they came alive after Frank tinkered with them. And now theres this one. Maybe your little boyfriend has some kind of yet to be explored ability, seeing as he was the first to gain awareness. She fell silent for a pregnant pause, glancing between the two of us. Something to ponder on your drive home. Which you will be starting now. She made a shooing motion with both her hands.
The message being quite clear, Frankie and I got back into his car. The ride was quiet at first, but it wasnt an uncomfortable stillness. It felt like a weight I didnt know Id been carrying had been lifted. I stared at the servers profile, alternately framed by nightly darkness and moonlight, drinking in every little detail about it. It was hard to believe that someone as cruel as Philomena Wallis had created something this breathtaking.
So youll probably wanna talk about all of this, huh. About what I am, I mean. Frankies voice was light and relaxed with only a hint of uncertainty gnawing at it.
Whats there to talk about?
Arent you surprised? A little disgusted, maybe?
I always knew you werent human. Beyond that, it doesnt really matter to me what you are. I shrugged. I mean, Id be fine if you were human, too. Id be fine if you were a squonk.
Whats a squonk?
I dont know, I just made that up. Anyways, did you actually think I would be grossed out? Did you?
He smiled. I guess not. Thisll sound crazy, and its hard to explain, but its like I got a voice in the back of my head constantly telling me that that I should wash myself again or that I ought not to touch you. I suppose its not really a voice; its only these thoughts that kind of keep pushing into my mind even though I should know better. And I do know better. But that doesnt stop the thoughts.
I nodded slowly. I think I understand. I cant tell you how much I disagree with that voice, though. Youre the cleanest person Ive ever met and if I could, Id live in your hair like a cootie."
"That's how close you want me?"
"Yup.
He let out a soft laugh. Im really, really glad you came with me. If theres ever anything you need, Ill do it. No matter what. If you want to bury a body, Ill dig the hole. He paused. Actually, we should sell any corpses you might have. Its wonderfully lucrative.
I shot him a quick smile before turning to stare out the window with knitted brows. What do you think about what Mary Markov said? About you being able to make the dolls come alive somehow.
I dont know if theres anything to it. I dont remember doing anything special with them. Zion and Bunny were just standing around when I turned them on, and they came to within minutes. I figured they were sentient before, and it was simply repressed. I woke up randomly, too, after all.
I hummed pensively. I wouldnt be so sure.
Well, if youre implying its some kinda superpower, then thats probably the most useless one ever.
We dont have to talk about this now, I told him, to which he gave me a grateful half-grin.
Per my request, he dropped me off at Netties place. I kissed him goodbye on the crown of his head and told him wed text the following day. He thanked me again and I watched him drive off before going up to ring the doorbell, mentally preparing an apology for showing up at five-thirty in the morning. My savior human was surprisingly quick to answer, giving me an indulgent wave as soon as I stumbled over my first Im sorry.
Its fine, she muttered. I hadnt gone to bed yet.
I gave her an incredulous look and she sighed, crossing her arms in front of her chest. Her normally soft, rounded cheeks were sunken, her eyes oddly dull. Judging from the angry red marks, shed apparently been chewing on her lower lip with some force. It was only then that I took note of the sweater she was wearing. A faded, shaggy piece of fabric that clearly hadnt been washed since Kit Sutton had given it to her on the cliff that day. I felt a sharp pang in my chest and pulled her into a hug as soon as Id stepped inside with her.
She stifled a sob when she wrapped her arms around me in return. Its hit or miss with me when it comes to sleep lately, she confessed in a brittle voice.
I swallowed. Im working on it. Ill get her back for you, I have a lead. Is there anything I can do in the meantime?
Not really. I just gotta distract myself til the morning comes, Ill be fine then.
Then Ill stay up with you.
It was thus decided. We sat down in the living room for a while, then went out into the garden to watch the sunrise. My savior human had taken her place in her mothers chair while I whipped up some chocolate chip pancakes (one of her favorites) for her for breakfast. I carried them out to her on a little plate with a cup of tea, and for a moment, her expression cleared up for a beam of happiness to shine through. We should do something productive, she remarked, and I gave her a questioning tilt of the head. Ive been thinking, she went on. Isnt it weird how all these years, you didnt hop dimensions once, and now all of a sudden it keeps happening?
Dont worry about that right now.
I always worry, baby girl. Its my natural state of being.
It shouldnt be, I insisted. It feels wrong. You have your own problems, I dont want to add to that.
Seriously, thats not whats happening here. This is just how I keep my mind off things.
I rolled my lips together. Blue-haired things, probably. You deserve so much better. You deserve this to be way, way easier, I stated.
Thats a nice thought. But it doesnt change anything right now. You can control your body, cant you? Your teeth and tentacles?
Yes. It happens automatically when I get scared sometimes, but for the most part, Im actively doing it.
Then how about if we could somehow start getting you on top of your dimension jumping, too? It would be a tad risky and Im not sure how to go about it exactly, but it would be far better if you could toggle it. Youd be able to stop yourself from hopping when you dont want to, but maybe you could venture into these other spaces for exploration purposes, too. The words spilled out of her like a babbling little waterfall as she plucked apart one of her pancakes and stuffed them into her mouth. Because there has to be more to this. I just have that feeling. So I reckon we try and find a way to work with this. What do you think?
Sure. I guess Id be open to that.
Really? I-I dont want to pressure you色
No, no, it sounds fine! I wanna try!
Okay! She set aside her plate, rubbing her hands in blatant excitement. So it happens when your flight instinct kicks in, correct? How about we get you in that headspace on purpose?
How would we do that? I asked cautiously.
When I was sitting cross-legged on the ground among my savior humans countless flowers with my eyes closed and her hand in mine, that question had pretty much answered itself. Nettie Peterson was leading me in a guided meditation consisting of several intrusive queries about my first ever jumpthe most terrifying moment of my entire life.
The thing, that floating maw, what did it look like? she began, referring to the creature that had ended it all.
I furrowed my brows. It didnt look like anything, I replied meekly. Mostly, it was just really big and dark.
Dark? What color dark?
Black, I guess. It swallowed the light. A pulsating pain began to flare up behind my forehead. It was nothing. It was like a giant ball of nothing.
You told me once that it made a noise, my best friend went on, her fingers grasping mine a little tighter. Do you remember that sound?
I winced. Yes.
Describe it.
It was more like a vibration that went through everything, I mumbled. The ground was shaking. And then we all screamed.
Did you see inside its mouth?
No. There was nothing inside of its mouth. There was nothing inside of it. Just emptiness. I shifted my weight. Images were flashing in front of my inner eye, filling the darkness behind my closed lids. My breath had caught in my throat and it felt like ants were crawling beneath my skin. And then all of us were suddenly nothing, everything was gone and at that last moment, everyone was so terrified. They all knew it was over. All of them.
At first, I thought Nettie Petersons hand was trembling. Then I realized it was my own, shaking hers through the contact. For a moment, my body felt feather-light, but not in a relaxing or comfortable way. It was as though I was afloat, out of control and weightless. I didnt like it. Can we stop? I choked out.
Of course, my best friend replied, gently squeezing my fingers.
I let go of a deep breath, blinking my eyes open. Across from me, Nettie was giving me a soft but deeply apologetic smile. Did I push you too far?
Its not your fault. I think I simply wasnt ready for this.
I understand. Lets go inside and make some more of those She stopped mid-sentence. Shed been pointing her chin at the plate of pancakes resting on her chair, only to see that it had changed.
The food I had just served her half an hour ago had turned into a moldy, rotten mess. A couple flies were circling it, emitting a low, almost melodic buzz. My savior human and I traded wide-eyed glances, disbelief, fear and excitement mirrored in our eyes. We then got up to take in our surroundings. The flowers surrounding us werent the same anymore. They were either withered or deathly pale; formerly pink, yellow and red petals had become either light gray or iridescently white. Thick, soupy fog was hanging over everything, it was denser and heavier than any wed ever had in town before. The mist seemed to have consumed all the noise and color in the world, leaving only cold, oppressive silence.
Nettie was the first to regain speech. It worked! Oh my Lord, it actually worked.
I clasped her arm and she immediately fell silent. Wordlessly, I pointed at the rolling fog on the other side of the garden fence. There was something moving within. An enormous, caterpillar-like shape soundlessly dragged itself through the air, its long body slowly moving along across the street. My savior humans jaw had dropped, her mouth wide open as she followed my gaze. Neither of us moved a muscle as we waited for the creature to pass by. Thankfully, it didnt seem to take note of us at all. I didnt want to imagine what could happen if one were to draw its attention.
This is I dont believe this, Nettie breathed, running a hand over her mussed coils. You did it. Were not home anymore.
What do you propose to do now?
Keep our heads low and try to find out anything useful, Id say.
I nodded and she folded her hand into the crook of my arm. Together, we proceeded through the open door back into the house. Wammawink and Netties old convertible were standing in their garage, a pool of motor fluid surrounding each vehicle. The paint was peeling from the car doors, matching the way the pictures and photographs around her house had faded.
The food in her kitchen had morphed into a self-contained ecosystem. Bugs were crawling up and down the walls and ghostly white mice scuttled across the floor with shocking brazenness. There was no trace of human life anywhere in sight. We stepped out the front door and into the street only for Nettie to grab me and fling me to the ground next to her. We flattened ourselves against the curb as another one of the gigantic caterpillar-figures snaked its way along just a couple feet above our heads. I craned my neck to give my best friend a sidelong glance out of terrified, saucer-sized eyes. I could see my reflection in hers as she pressed a finger to her lips. I gave her a tiny nod.
Finally, it was gone again and we helped each other to our feet. Nettie brushed down her sweater with great care before tilting her head at me as though asking if I was alright. I gave a reassuring, albeit wavering smile which she returned with a slight strain to her brow. We linked arms again and started walking down the street. The whole dimension seemed to be a mirror image of our hometown, only deader. Aside from the flies and vermin, there seemed to be very little life. All of the houses we were so familiar with looked decrepit, old and empty. Walls were crumbling down, roofs looked to be seconds away from caving in and most windows were shattered. It was impossible to see ahead through the mist, but we managed to hide from the flying worm-things everytime they came up.
We were starting to become a little frustrated seeing as our exploration yielded nothing of note. There was hardly anything to be seen safe from the depressing alternate version of our neighborhood. On top of that, the clammy chill that hung in the air along with the fog was making us increasingly uncomfortable. Finally, we decided we should try and get back home. We returned to Netties garden where we crouched down once again, hand in hand. Before my savior human could begin her questioning though, the ground beneath us suddenly began to shudder, heaving as if moved by some kind of subterranean pulse.
Nettie Peterson and I snapped our eyes open at the exact same time, mouths agape in bewilderment. And then we saw it. It was in the sky, partially veiled by the thick fog yet impossible to overlook. It became darker and darker as it neared, its indescribably large form seemed to envelop the entirety of the heavens. It had been five years since I had last seen it, but I recognized it immediately. Not that it had any features I could have recognized. I remembered though, and in that moment, it all came flooding back to me. The breeders that threw themselves in front of their young, the cries that echoed across the plains together with the stones and soil sent rolling by the earthquake. I caught my best friends gaze, read the terror in it and knew that it was just as immense as my own. Her lips were parted in an ear-piercing scream that ended up being drowned out by the hovering roar of the Devourer Of Worlds.
I squeezed her hand so tightly I feared Id snap her fingers. And suddenly, before I knew it, all was silent again. The air was warmer, filled with the fragrances of countless different flowers. The early morning sun was shining down on us, and it felt like it was heating up my very core. We were back. In the blink of an eye, Nettie had thrown her arms around me, pulling me close to her chest.
Baby girl, she whispered.
That was it, I rasped out. That was it.
I know. Withdrawing just an inch, she wiped a thumb over my eye, careful not to scrape me with her nail. It was only then that I realized I was crying. Tears were streaming down my cheeks, noiseless and hot, dripping from my chin and wetting my chest.
"You're not hurt, are you? Look, it's going to be alright. You just take it easy now. We'll go inside, have some tea or coffee or whatever and calm down, a-and then we can figure this all out. Come on. Get up. Easy, easy now." She hugged me even as she pulled me to my feet and into the house alongside her. "So tea. How about strawberry? Or Turkish apple? Or classic chamomile? Something for the nerves, at any rate."
"Wait," I stammered, interrupting her monologue. "What about you? Are you okay?"
"Oh, no. No, no, no, far from it. I'll sign us both up for therapy once I find the time, but for now, tea! Tea."
"Nettie, please don't strain yourse"
"Listen here, I'm gonna make you some goddamn tea and we'll sit down with it and it's gonna be warm and nice and we'll forget all about this. I'm here. I can take care of you. You do not need to be scared." She pressed her face close up to mine, her voice sharp and a mite threatening.
"I'm sort of scared of you right now."
"Oh." She drew back. "Pardon. I'll put on the tea." A forced, crooked tune tumbled from her lips as she went ahead into the kitchen.
We've both simmered down a little since the incident. It's been two days now. I used most of that time to unwind and recover from what had to be the single most eventful night of my time here on earth. Keep in mind, this happened the morning after the fire. The calm is not going to last much longer, though. I don't mind that, I just need to brace myself.
Rhonda's been in touch.
X
1
2: deadbeat roommate
3: creepy crush
4: relocation
5: beach concert
6: First date
7: Temp work
8: roommate talk
9: a dismal worldview
10: warehouse
11: staircase
12: explanation
13: hurt
14: hospital
15: ocean
16: diner
17: government work
18: something in the caves
19: shopping cart
20: olms and Jewels
21: long hair
22: recruitment
23: waitresses
24: dollhouse
25: burning plastic
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