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I love Duolingo, I'm currently working on Hebrew and it's very helpful - I can't believe how much I'm learning. And although it's probably responsible for faster progress, I hate the competitive aspect of it because I can't let it go when some rascal somewhere in the world bumps me down in the leaderboard. I wish they would do away with the "demotion zone;" I'd like to be able to study at my leisure and advance through the leagues based on my total experience over time, not how much time I had in any given week. To me, that would be far more rewarding, and I wouldn't care if I had made a lot of progress as long as I studied regularly. [Although I get great satisfaction out of beating that horrible, horrible person who bumped me this morning!] XP
It's a long story so if you don't wanna read that's fine, I'll try to make it as short as possible, I'm a 24 year old guy, like 18 months ago I met this girl in my college in our friend group, she only knew one of us that day but we all became friends later, she asked each one of us if we were single and I'm not really the relationship kind of person I don't think I'd be a good boyfriend, anyway she asked why I'm single and I told her because one girl isn't enough, which is obviously sarcasm, anyway we got to talking and she ended up handing me here phone and to my surprise it's open on notes and it reads " do you wanna be friends with benefits? " i said sure and I took her number, it's worth to mention that we have tons in common and that's so rare because I don't meet eye to eye with just most people, but we did meet eye to eye and more than that, we agreed on almost everything especially the things that matters like not wanting kids and stuff like that, we started hanging out almost on a daily basis either in college or at her house where I met her family and we would drink and smoke and get intimate, and we were really just this depressed type but we made each other happy, I fell in love with her and it's the first time I fall in love with a girl, she said she did too but that we should give it a little more time before deciding on anything and I agreed, eventually like 7 months later we had a falling out because I basically didn't agree to let her in my friends circle and I didn't wanna meet her friends either because it's just a headache for me meeting new people and I didn't want her to meet mine because they're really just bad and I told her that openly, she eventually went on a trip with her friends and invited me but I didn't go, and she passed away on that trip from a stroke and it definitely had something to do with bad drugs, I was very sad but I didn't show it and still don't show it , but sometimes I just see her in everyone and everything, whether seeing a girl laugh like her or her name or her eyes , and I legit start crying even tho I rarely ever cry like most of my family died and I never cried, but her I really fucking miss so fucking much it just hurts so much and no matter how many girls I meet or see there's just none like her, it just feels like not only did I lose a precious person but precious memories that could've been but didn't, I hate this feeling
Hi! This may be a little long but I wanted to share my experience cause I know there is a lot of ladies who are in the same boat with me and just need to hear something or anything to feel less alone, because I know how much pressure society, family, religion or ourselves put on towards being a mother. When I was 26 I found out I was pregnant, at the time - abortion was never a thought. The reason for that was because I was so naive and had no idea what I was getting into. Was hopeful for the future even tho the dad was a POS and we didn't have a pot to piss in - I just knew we could still make it work, because i had that desire to make it work, years later we are doing great. Now, I'm 32, I'm a little older, I'm actually less patient but still blooming from leaving that soul draining relationship I was in with her dad. I just knew I had to get through a small time frame (her being 2-5, hard years!) And everything would fall into place. It did. I'm finally here.
I got with a guy and we did the pull out method (never again) and I had a positive test 2 weeks later. I went through all the phases. Happy, scared, emotional, angry. I even got attached to the baby and could swear it was a boy. My daughter is always asking for a sibing and I'd finally be able to give one to her. Then, I started thinking about my future, thinking of all the things that would change and how it would put me into the entire opposite spot of where I wanted my life to be, where I just got out from. I just knew my only chance was an abortion, something once so far from my mind became front and center because I wasn't naive anymore, I knew exactly what was in store for me. I was not ready for that. I'm allowed to not be ready.
ultimately I made the call to the clinic and went for my consultation - without judgement and after going through the options I decided on SA. I picked SA cause you're sedated and don't think about what's happening. I was tired of thinking. The whole time at clinic, I felt at ease. Like I was doing the right thing although it once was against my moral fiber. I know the fighting we do with ourselves over this and I just want to assure you that if you are positive having a MA or SA is a good solution for your life and your circumstances then just trust your gut. Sometimes we have to turn our brain off and just listen to our body. Never once did my gut say run far away from here. It told me it was okay to be here.
When you're in these shoes, faced with such a incredibly hard decision it's so imperative to be with gentle hands in health care. My heart breaks for the women in banned states having to face this alone or with the threat of imprisonment and you just deserve soooo much more than that.
So I want to end this with, if you are certain you want to proceed with a MA or SA. Please be aware that there is a facility here in Florida, next to busses and airports, that can help you make this happen. They offer transportation in sensitive cases and they also have financial assistance. If you want more details let me know but like I said it's vital you have a good supportive system and are treated like the good person you are. I had mine at 930 a.m this morning and I had no pain, I didn't even remember it and now I'm just resting at home and I'm very comfortable right now but that can be the meds still lol. Just know you're not alone and I left feeling just as certain on my decision as when I got there. Just trust yourself.
--- Table of Contents
--- Spring 4985, 20 Buromoth
The armor Smith Nangran gave them fit much better than the pieces lent to them for the trip. Shon still hated it, but he hated it a lot less. Practice
, he told himself, trying to picture Master Veon-Zih's face as he did so, you can accomplish anything with practice...
Except Master Veon-Zih didn't wear armor.
"I thought we were going to learn plate, or at least half-plate..." Rerves whispered to his fellows as they adjusted their new armor, working the straps so they weren't too tight or too loose.
His whisper wasn't quiet enough, however, because Master Daunas laughed from where he stood beside Nangran, and the smith huffed. "So you want to try plate, do you, boy?" The Weapon Master asked a little too innocently.
Rerves looked up hopefully, "Is that an option, ser?" Shon swallowed nervously.
"Sure! Let's give it a try..." Master Daunas grinned, the look definitely sinister in Shon's opinion. "Got some plate for the big one, Nan?" He asked Nangran, who rolled his eyes before moving deeper into the forge to retrieve a set of battered but sparkling platemail.
Rerves rushed to remove his new, specially fitted, leather armor, while Thom looked on in envy. Shon half expected Thom to request his own set of the fully encasing metal, but the shy boy stayed quiet and instead settled with helping his friend strip off the leather and strap on the clanking plate. Rerves beamed but could barely lift his arms to don the helm.
"There you go, boy! Halfway to a Paladin already." Master Daunas called out as he turned Rerves by the shoulders and marched him, waddling under the metal's weight, out of the smithy. Shon followed silently, taking note of the guards looking down from the wall and some Squires elbowing each other and snickering in the courtyard.
The four weeks of watch rotation had started, giving the new boys time to catch up before the oldest Squires 'graduated' on the spring equinox. It was four weeks in which they trained from before dawn to after dusk in the basics and foundations, while the others had mostly free time outside of their six-hour watch. Which meant the new boys had an audience of off-duty seniors.
"Now all you need is a sword!" Master Daunas was saying to Rerves as he left the over-encumbered Squire in one of the sparring rings. He strode to the weapons rack and grabbed a sword and shield before returning and presenting them to the boy. Rerves grabbed the sword, but as he took the shield, his arm collapsed, the metal of his vambrace clanging loudly against his chausses. He was still trying to heft the shield into position when Master Daunas drew his own sword, "Now let's test it out, shall we?"
Rerves dropped the shield, gaping at the Weapon Master, "But... but," he scrambled for an excuse and settled on the live steel in his hand, "You don't have any armor, ser, what if..."
Master Daunas never stopped smiling, but his voice was finally serious, "Boy, if you can land a hit on me in that, then you deserve to graduate with the others this year." and he swung.
Rerves didn't really dodge; he pulled back and fell on his backside, scrambling on his butt and trying to roll over to push himself back up but barely able to move. Master Daunas hit him with the flat of the blade in the side with a resounding gong-like ring hard enough to help push Rerves over so he could struggle to his hands and knees. "Get up boy, if you're on the ground in a fight this early, you've already lost."
Shon watched in horror as the Weapon Master continued to hammer down on Rerves with the flat of his blade. The Squire did manage to get to his feet and retrieve his sword and shield eventually but he still couldn't lift them, flailing them weakly at the Weaponmaster's legs. Master Daunas dodged easily, even yawning lazily before he flicked his sword and disarmed the poor Squire again.
"Call match!" one of the Squires shouted from the sidelines, the small crowd of them all shaking their heads at the display.
Master Daunas laughed, but Rerves took the advice and called "Match, match!" as loud as he could before dropping to his knees, heaving in heavy breaths from just a few minutes of trying to move in the full armor.
"Match it is then," Master Daunas conceded, saluting the Squire with his sword before gesturing for the others, "Help your brother out of that boys. He did his best."
Shon and Thom rushed forward to help Rerves, but they weren't alone. The other Squires came forward, one with a water skin he presented to Rerves after the helm was removed, "You did better than Zihler did last year," another of them said with a comforting pat on the shoulder after Shon removed the breastplate.
"Huh?" Rerves let out a tired questioning grunt, and another Squire pulled him to his feet so they could get the legs off.
"There's one every year," one of the eldest said sagely, picking up the discarded armor and slinging it easily over his shoulder.
"Yeah, it was Jawsh in our year," another explained.
Master Daunas strode forward and clapped Rerves on the shoulder, giving him a little shake, "You'll be ready for plate eventually, boy, but not until your third or even final year. Grow stronger in leather, then banded mail, then half-plate. Everyone starts at the bottom and works their way up."
Rerves smiled weakly but had regained some of his confidence apparently because he managed to say, "You could have just told me that, ser..." which made Master Daunas laugh out loud again.
He didn't even bother to answer the Squire, just turned around and went back into the smithy, shouting at Nangran, "I told you it would be the big one this year! You owe me ten copper Nan!"
For the entire first week, the new Squires were instructed in the basic drills of their assigned sword types. It meant they couldn't truly work together -each sword having different techniques- but it also gave them a chance to get to know some of the older Squires who helped them early on. The year ahead of them had five Squires, one of the largest years in recent history. Kefir and Baradin both used one-handed longswords and shields and worked with Rerves. Uther and Rehlien both used large two-handed greatswords and helped Thom. Zihler was the only one who specialized in the bastard sword and worked with Shon. He wasn't left-handed, but Shon did all the exercises with both hands anyway, letting Zihler help him with the right first, then switching to using his left after he was confident he had them down.
During their second week, they were given their first sword forms. Like the kata Shon had been studying under Master Veon-Zih, the sword forms were meant to represent actual maneuvers to be performed in combat, and he took to them with even greater gusto than he had the simple drills.
"He's like a dancer..." Kefir whispered to Zihler as they watched Shon work through the form, without complaining, for what must have been the twentieth time that day.
Zihler nodded but also huffed, "I bet he flinches the first time we spar, though."
"I don't know..." Kefir muttered, then louder explained, "He's the one who bloodied Selv on the raid. Rerves said he trained under some old man fighter before he came here."
"We'll see," Baradin interjected, joining his fellows, "Master Daunas is on his way. He wants us to get out the sparring swords."
Zihler gave his brother Squire a lazy salute. Baradin was the unofficial leader of their year. It had chafed at first, and Zihler was still the most prone to defy him on occasion -usually when it didn't matter much- but over the course of their first year even he had stepped in line to Baradin's passive ability to take command. The three waved down Uther and Rehlien, who jogged over.
As Baradin had said, Master Daunas arrived a moment later with the resident Cleric close behind. "Fall in, Squires!" he bellowed to the practicing three, and Shon, Thom, and Rerves all quickly obeyed, standing side by side at stiff attention. "It's officially week three and time to start sparring," he informed them, gesturing for the senior Squires to move forward and exchange the real swords for wooden ones. He looked each of the three over carefully, then nodded to himself and said, "Thom and Rerves, face off."
Zihler noticed Shon's shoulders slump ever so slightly as he stepped away from the other two, who turned towards each other. They were obviously nervous. "Those are wooden swords, but this is a real fight. They will still hurt like a bit-" the Cleric cleared his throat, interrupting the Weaponmasters' use of profanity. Master Daunas coughed but continued, "Despite that, I don't want you to hold back, you fight like you train, and if you go easy on each other, you will go easy on a real opponent. You are not civilians, and neither is your opponent. This isn't a game. The fight won't end until one of you takes a killing or disabling blow. Every adult here, minus myself and Smith Nangran, is capable of healing any wounds you might give or receive. So again, no holding back. If I call 'hold,' that means to freeze, stop moving, hold your position. Now lay on!"
Rerves and Thom both swallowed down their fear and moved slowly, unsure what their first strike should be. As expected, the two did hold back, both from nervousness at not knowing what to do and honestly not wanting to hurt each other. Daunas sighed, but Zihler understood. It had taken him months before he could really hit his friends. And he was one of the faster ones to manage it. And even then, only really
when they were in armor.
The two newbies eventually sped up but were still pulling their hits. They both flinched with each strike, many of which were going to leave decent bruises, but Master Daunas wouldn't call an end until one of them landed a killing or disabling blow hard enough to count. On the other side of the sparring ring, Zihler saw Shon narrow his eyes as he tapped his boot with his sword.
"Match!" Master Daunas called after a loud smack pulled Zihler's attention back to the sparring pair.
Thom dropped his sword, cradling his hand. Rerves rushed forward, "I'm sorry, are you okay?" he had apparently caught Thom on the knuckles unintentionally.
"Both of you are aiming for your opponent's weapon instead of his body. You only hit their sword to parry or deflect. Hitting their weapon won't end a fight." Master Daunas instructed, "Practice boys, it's the only real way to learn, I can talk until my face turns blue, but you won't know until you make and take a few hits. Shon, you're up, Rerves, get ready."
Shon stepped into the ring, and something changed. Zihler couldn't describe it, but Rerves obviously felt something because he met his friend's blue eyes and swallowed. "Lay on!" Master Daunas shouted, and Rerves immediately raised his shield.
Just in time too, because Shon came in like a hurricane. He held his sword one-handed, but it still rang off Rerves' shield like a hammer. Rerves tried to counter as his form dictated, but Shon twisted his sword, taking it in both hands and sliding it along Rerves' blade before pivoting it up and swinging hard with a sickening 'thwak' against Rerves' shoulder. The larger boy immediately dropped his sword and reached for the wound with his shield arm while Master Daunas shouted, "Match!" and Shon stepped back.
He didn't apologize or rush forward as Rerves had done for Thom. The five senior Squires all stared at him, but Shon just bowed to Rerves while the Cleric came forward to check his arm.
"Well, I'll be damned," Master Daunas said with a wide smile, "It's about time someone listens to reason, but can you take as good as you give, boy?" Shon just arched a silent black eyebrow at the Weaponmaster, who laughed and took Thom's two-handed sword from him, handing it to Zihler, "Don't hold back, because this one certainly won't." he instructed the senior.
Zihler saluted the Weaponmaster and stepped into the sparring ring as Shon brought his sword to the ready position. As Zihler met Shon's eyes, his throat turned dry, forcing him to swallow as Rerves had done. His full year of more experience wasn't enough to prepare him for Shon's stare. The boy's icy eyes seemed to bore right through him. He wasn't at all nervous or scared. He didn't even seem determined or angry. Just cold. Like he could take Zihler's head and not lose a wink of sleep over it.
Zihler braced himself for an attack, but Shon didn't rush in as he had for Rerves. He maintained his guard and his stare until the senior Squire advanced. Inching forward, Zihler looked for the opening he knew had to be there. Shon didn't have enough experience yet to truly compete with the older Squire and when he swung, he swung hard. Master Daunas would accept nothing less.
Shon managed a parry, but both swords shook with the force of the hit. He didn't flinch and countered just as hard, telegraphing his attack and taking a breath too long, giving Zihler an opening. Shon was going to take the senior in the neck just as Zihler had imagined, and what was worse, he still hadn't blinked or changed his expression.
Zihler aimed for Shon's ribs, expecting the boy to redirect his sword and block the same way he had for Rerves. He didn't, and Zihlers wooden blade smacked him at full force in the side. If his ribs didn't crack, they were at least bruised, and Zihler felt himself flinch on Shon's behalf as the younger boy couldn't help but fold over the attack. Shon's swing lost some of its momentum, but he didn't stop, continuing to follow through, towards Zihlers neck, until "Match!"
Shon's sword stopped after barely tapping Zihler, showing that he hadn't lost control of the weapon and still had enough sense to pull the strike once the match was over. Would he really have hit the Squire full force if Master Daunas hadn't stopped them? Zihler felt himself sweating and had to swallow again. Shon finally blinked and stepped back, reaching for his ribs and flinching in pain as he gripped them.
The Cleric rushed forward, already speaking a prayer, and Zihler muttered a quiet, "Sorry..." as Shon flinched again at the healer's touch.
Shon furrowed his brow, then asked, "Why?" making Zihler blink in confusion, "We weren't supposed to hold back." Shon explained.
"Yeah, but..." Zihler started,
"You could've blocked that. It's the same technique you used in your first match," Master Daunas instructed Shon sternly.
Shon looked down at his sword, then back up at the Weapon Master. His eyes darted momentarily to Zihler before he muttered, "If I'd been faster, I could have ended it before he put too much force behind it..."
"You took the hit on purpose?!" Zihler shouted in disbelief.
Shon just shrugged, his ribs healed enough that it would only hurt a little to move, "I wasn't fast enough."
"Next time, block," Master Daunas chastised the younger boy, "Even if the blow had lost half its strength, you would've been injured." Shon hesitated, and Zihler noticed him clenching his fist at his side before he nodded in answer.
The bell for lunch sounded its twelve long rings, filling the courtyard as Master Daunas waved the boys towards the weapons rack, signaling an end to the practice. Zihler’s fellows joined him as he handed the practice weapon back to Thom. He didn't speak until the three newbies moved far enough away not to hear, "That was scary..."
"He really went all out, didn't he?" Kefir asked. Zihler could only nod.
"Cold-blooded," Rehlien commented.
"You have no idea," Zihler confirmed, "Even the seniors hold back more than he did."
The five turned toward the fortress and lunch, Baradin saying, "He could've though, did you see how easily he stopped his swing?"
"I felt it," Zihler mumbled, rubbing his neck. But he'd also seen clearly that Shon wouldn't have had the match not been called.
"I couldn't do that..." Uther mumbled, more to himself than the others, his shoulders slumping.
The other four immediately shifted their attention to their fellow. The poor boy had struggled through every stage of their combat training. Baradin patted him on the back, trying to sound soothing, "It’s only been a year. You have plenty of time."
Uther sighed heavily, "That was his first match, and he's already better than I am..." none of the others had an answer for that.
"I can't do this..."
Shon looked up from his book to furrow his brow at the older Squire. Uther looked as dejected as ever, staring unseeing at his own books spread out on the table in front of him. They showed drawings of fighting forms being performed step by step with explanations detailing each one's use.
"Uther..." Kefir whispered, reaching out to rub his friend's back, "You can..."
"I can't!" Uther slammed his book shut, and every Squire at the table jumped in surprise, "I don't want to. I hate this. I hate all of this." he crossed his arms over the table and dropped his head into them.
Shon tried to go back to his book. It was none of his business. He hardly knew the boy, and even if he did, what would he say? What could any of them say? And yet he listened as the others tried to comfort the frustrated Squire. "You're the best at our theology and law lessons, though, Uther. We can help you with the rest. We still have time."
"I don't want to fight..." Uther spoke into his arms, "I never did... I just thought... I thought that if I tried hard enough, I would learn..."
"I don't want to." he was barely audible now, even in the absolute silence of the library.
At the end of the table, two boys a year older than Uther exchanged looks and silent nods before they stood and came to kneel beside him, "You don't have to." one of them said. Shon looked up again.
The other rubbed the Uther's back gently, "There was a boy a year older than us, his name was Karlin, he had a hard time too..."
Uther turned his head just enough to look through his arms at the Squire, "He gave up?"
"He went to train as a Cleric instead." the first said, "We got a letter from him last year, he's really happy, Uther. Maybe..." he hesitated, and his friend picked up for him,
"We would never encourage you to quit. If you want to stay, we'll help you. Everyone here will." he gestured to the table at large and then to the rest of the fortress beyond the library door. Uther lifted his head, and Shon nodded when he met the older boy's eyes. Though what he could do, he still didn't know.
The senior Squire continued, "But if you really don't want to, we will support you in that too."
Uther looked around at all of them, then whispered, "It's not too late?"
"It's never too late," the Paladin on duty chimed in without looking up. Perhaps not wanting to interject too much into the Squires' group effort to comfort their own.
"You've only been here a year, and Karlin already showed it's possible to transfer. If that's really what you want."
"I... I think I'll go pray..." Uther finally managed to choke out. The two boys stood and helped him to his feet but let him walk to the door on his own. Shon went back to his book.
He'd wanted this so badly it had hurt. He couldn't imagine being in Uther's position... But he also felt a strange sort of pride in his fellow Squires. They had stood up to help their fellow without hesitation, even now that he left, they weren't judging him for his voiced doubts. And even Uther himself. Shon had to imagine that it took a lot of strength to admit to the others that he might give up, that this path wasn't for him.
The next day Uther left Hamerfoss.
Along with the fundamentals of their swords, the new Squires were caught up in lessons on kingdom law. As Paladins, it would be their responsibility to enforce the law in each of the ten provinces, each with their own nuances. However, kingdom-wide laws always superseded province laws, so the new Squires were expected to know as much of that as possible before they started with the others.
Today they were learning about magic regulation...
"You should've all learned the basic theory of arcane magic before reaching maturity..." the Paladin giving their lecture began, waiting for their nods before continuing, "So you know that, theoretically, anyone can practice arcane magic. With enough study and funding. The kingdom has granted the Mages Guild a leading voice in the laws surrounding the use of arcane magic, and the power to enforce them with the assistance of the local Temple representatives."
The classroom was made to hold twenty five Squires and so felt particularly large and empty with only the three of them seated in the front row taking silent notes as the instructor spoke. He explained how the teleport system of gates worked within the Guild. That transport could be purchased to instantly travel between Guild towers, but that permission had to be granted from the destination if crossing province lines; otherwise, travelers would be trapped in the Guild and heavily fined, even imprisoned in some cases. He touched briefly on the cost cap of certain magical items, such as bags of holding and weather-resistant cloaks, to prevent price gouging. And handed out a list of outlawed magic items they would be required to memorize in their own time for a test at the end of this training period. It mostly consisted of anything that could cause outright harm, rare and valuable spell components for powerful spells, or items that aided in stealth that could be used for thievery. Though with the proper licensure, some experienced allies of the Temples were permitted to use many of them.
"Arcane magic has the potential to be very dangerous, and as such, all practicing Mages are required to be trained and registered as members of the Guild. Only Archmages, the highest Mage rank, are permitted to conduct research outside the Guild and take apprentices at their leisure. Which brings us to Sorcerers..."
Shon looked up from his notes. Their teacher was writing on the board again. At the top, he scrawled 'Sorcerers' then drew two lines down from the word to 'Clearance' and 'Sealing.' "When a Sorcerer awakens, they are required to..." he started, but Thom and Rerves both quickly raised their hands.
"What's a Sorcerer?" Rerves asked after the instructor nodded his way. Thom put down his hand, having had the same question.
The instructor looked at Shon and asked, "Do you know what a Sorcerer is?" when Shon shook his head, the man looked disapproving, "Then why didn't you ask?"
"They did..." Shon muttered down to his notebook. The teacher sighed and Shon glared at his notes. He would've asked if Thom and Rerves hadn't... assuming the answer wasn't made clear as the lesson continued.
Rather than further chastise him, the teacher moved on to answer the question, "A Sorcerer is someone who possesses natural arcane magic. They are born with power over one of the five elements. The power usually manifests around puberty, and when it does, the Sorcerer in question is taken to the Mages Guild. There they are either trained to control it -taking many years of study- or the power is sealed." He turned his back on the boys to continue writing on the board. Under 'Clearance', he wrote 'training' and 'testing', and under 'Sealing', he wrote 'tattoo' and 'item.'
"A Sorcerer with a clearance is the same in practice as a Mage who is registered with the Guild. Most Sorcerers, however, have their power sealed, preventing its use,"
"Why?" Thom asked, then quickly clapped his hand over his mouth, embarrassed for interrupting.
The instructor didn't seem to mind the interruption so much as the question itself. His eyes went wide in his disbelief as he looked down at the boys, "It is incredibly dangerous. Earth Sorcerers have been known to cause small earthquakes; Water and Air Sorcerers can drown or steal the air right from the lungs; Ice Sorcerers can freeze an entire room; and Fire Sorcerers... well, they are the most destructive. And all of that can be unintentional. Their magic is driven by their emotions, and if they can't control it, they are a danger to themselves and everyone around them. This is also why they are usually sealed with a tattoo..." he tapped the word on the board, "The sealing tattoo blocks their ability to use any kind of magic. It locks their energy, and thus their magic, in their body, preventing its manipulation. It is also given to any Mages, Druids, Clerics, and even Paladins that break the law and endanger the kingdom."
Rerves opened his mouth but then remembered to raise his hand, waiting for permission before he asked, "But don't Clerics and Paladins lose their God's blessing and their magic if they use it for evil?"
The teacher sighed again, though sadly this time, "Only Saint Giorgos reveres law itself as holy, and not every God holds the same standards for evil."
"Horsa..." Rerves growled under his breath, and the instructor nodded solemnly in agreement, his eyes flashing angrily at the mention of Hengist's brother and nemesis.
"Spells that are acceptable in Horsa-controlled provinces are not always permitted in Hengist's lands and vis versa. The Temples prefer to transfer those caught performing illegal acts with magic to a province where it is permitted, but occasionally, even a Cleric or Paladin can be tattooed to prevent further spell use. In some provinces, and you will learn more about this later, they even tattoo non-magic users who commit violent crimes. To prevent them from ever learning dangerous magic in the future."
Shon stared at the word scrawled in his notebook. Sealing tattoos worked by sealing the person's energy in their body, their ki... would it prevent Monk abilities too? The bell ending the lesson interrupted his thoughts, and Shon looked up to the teacher with the others, waiting for official dismissal before they would close their notebooks, "You should have that list of contraband memorized by the end of the week," the instructor reminded them as he began to erase the board, "Dismissed."
A rabbit made of fire hopped its way around the open cage. She sat on the floor, focusing on it, forcing it to keep the shape she willed while she stroked the cat's crimson-scaled head. The cat rested its entire front half in her lap, its lower legs splayed out on the ground, limp, too weak to move. She fought back tears as it tried to lift one great paw to bat at the bunny. She let the cat hit it, even made the flame rabbit fall down, pinned under the red claws. Not all of her treasures could touch her fire, but this one could, so she would do this for it at least. It purred in triumph at catching the flaming bunny but closed its eyes a moment later, letting out a ragged breath.
It was dying. They all died eventually, but it didn't stop the pain. She sniffed, trying to keep the tears from falling as she let the fire go. Snuffed out like her treasure.
"Come on, Red... it’s time to go..." Ran whispered into the cage.
She shook her head, stroking the large cat's side. Its breathing had slowed even further, "Not yet," she choked, then sniffed again.
Brom rested a hand on Ran's shoulder, "Give her a little longer."
"He can wait," Brom whispered.
Her tears finally started to fall, streaming silently down her cheeks and over her scales, the same shade as this treasure, the first treasure she'd ever pet. It had lived longer than the others, somehow, and was one of the few she was capable of touching for more than a few moments. "Why?" she asked the journeymen, not really expecting an answer she could accept.
They squatted down outside the cage together, and Ran answered, "Their bodies can't handle the magic. They're animals with dragon power. We're trying Red, but we haven't figured out how to stop it yet..."
"Am I going to die too?" she asked. The cat's breathing slowed further, her tears dripping onto its head and sizzling as they landed.
"No, Goldy, no... You're different... you're..." Brom struggled to find an explanation.
"A Sorcerer Red," Ran provided, "And a really powerful one."
Her treasure breathed its last, letting the air out slowly until it was unmoving in her lap. She cried silently. Curling around the large cat that was too heavy for her to lift, she cried into its neck, holding it close.
Brom crawled into the cage, but he didn't touch her, "Come on, Goldy, maybe the next generation..." he braved grabbing her arm, flinching at the heat of her skin and pulling her out of the cage as silent tears continued to fall. She tried to control herself but couldn't and fell to her knees as soon as she was out. Brom pulled quickly away, shaking his burned fingers. "Oh, Goldy... please don't..."
She squeezed her eyes shut, trying to stop crying while also keeping her power pulled in, so she wouldn't catch any of the scattered straw or her caretakers' robes on fire. Her eyes flew open when a thick heavy blanket wrapped around her, and strong arms held it tight to her.
"I've got you, Red... It's okay to cry..." she could feel the antifire spell on the blanket press into her skin, but past that was Ran's arms, and a moment later, a second set, Brom's, wrapped her in a tight embrace. It was the only way they could hug her, and she was grateful enough that she let herself go, her shoulders bobbing as she sobbed and wailed for the loss of her treasure... and for herself.
--- Table of Contents
Thanks for making it this far, you are the real MVP
So here's some context: I'm not a fan of brute-forcing a boss by spamming health/mana potions or food in Afterimage, or any other game that allows that for that matter. In Breath of the wild, I would rarely eat something during a fight, for example.
And so that's I've been doing in Afterimage. At the beginning, I would still use potions sometimes, but over time, I started exclusively using the basic heals that you get back anytime you go to a savepoint or die.
It worked pretty well for a while, but recently it started becoming less viable. First there was Alvess the everstorm, which was generally a pretty fair boss, but it just had a lot of hp and required pretty quick reactions the whole way. Then, there was Valo the first knight, which is also fair if very difficult, but I gave up on it for now when I learned that it had a secret second phase.
And now, Loss the broken wings, the boss that locks triple jump. Despite taking me less time, this was much more frustrating than Alvess. The first phase, while being too slow-paced for my taste, is something you legitimately out skill. With enough practice, you can no-damage the first phase consistently.
The second phase, however...Oh my god. That attack where it jumps to the ground several times while leaving a golden trail behind it looks impossible to do non-damage in a legit way. What is the not legit way? Well, turns out you can cheese this attack by wall jumping in one of the corners. Yeah...
Unfortunately, the rest of the second phase isn't much better. It starts firing way too many of his feathers, which have very tricky patterns, and so I just did not see a world where I could fight this boss fairly. Once again, the upper corners of the room saved me. I found this ability that makes a water droplet fall any time my character jumps. So I just double jump near the wall until the boss died. It's not foolproof, there are ways that the boss can hit you, but it's way easier to try to challenge it on the ground.
To see if I missed something, I've checked a boss compilation on youtube, and at the very least that particular person also didn't know how to do this without damage. He simply had a more powerful weapon than I did, more hp than I did, and was 3 levels above me...and he also stunned the boss right before the second phase started. That's another thing, btw: I'd say that in one out of ten attempts at least, there was a moment where the boss would just randomly stand still for about 15 seconds. At first, I thought it was a glitch honestly, but it's happened enough times that I'm wondering if it might be intentional, and if yes I wonder how to make it happen.
In conclusion, this boss doesn't deserve a fair fight, burn every one of your resources to take down this asshole. As for me, unless the next boss I find turns out to be very different, I think I'll actually start playing the game as intended instead of playing this self-imposed challenge lol.
I just heard a Madison Beer song on the radio and was surprised to see it's not on streaming yet. I know back in the day it was normal to hear a single on the radio for a few weeks (?) before it became available to purchase, but we're so used to singles being instantly available now. Madison has also announced that her upcoming album will be released in September, which also feels like a more 'old school' way of doing things. I think the gap between announcing an album's release date (if you announce it at all) and actually dropping it is usually a lot shorter these days.
I was a pre-teen when iTunes and Limewire streaming became the norm, so I can't remember the previous way things worked very well. I'm wondering if anyone can remind me what album cycles used to look like - e.g.:
How long would a single be on radio before being available in store?
How long would a single usually be in stores for?
Would artists usually promote a single on morning shows/Top of the Pops etc. before it came out or when it was already available?
How many singles would usually be released before and then after the album was released?
How long were typical album cycles/eras?
And any other interesting information/facts you think is relevant!
Thanks so much in advance.
TLDR; special needs child and different sexuality and priorities is causing a huge rift in relationship but I(wife) and financially dependent on the husband and am unable to leave the relationship despite it not really working. needing opinions on what to do..
This goes into a lot of person details and refers to sex.
I just. I need some perspective and some other people's opinions.
I kinda do and don't know what I should do.
So. I'm 32f and my partner is 35m. We have been together for 6 years, married for 5. I'm ace(asexual). He is not. I prefaced the entire relationship, before we started dating, that I was ace and what that meant for me.
(Here is some back story on me. I came out as ace in high school year 2005 (i was 15ish). My friends, aka the gay kids, all told me I was only saying that because I couldn't get a boyfriend. So I did my best to live as a het women. Obviously struggled in relationships. I was full porn because sex did nothing for me and my only way of thinking how things worked was by seeing and copying porn. I was hyper sexual to make up for my lack.. In 2016(I was26ish) I came out as ace again. This time telling people I was ace and knowing it was true.)
Back to when I met my husband in 2016. I told him I was ace and what that meant for me. How I give zero fs about sex and such. He says no problem. Cue relationship start. Not long after we started dating I (not purposefully) proceeded to go back to my old habits of being hyper sexual to appease my partner. That lasted for around 10 months before I couldn't anymore. So then things slowed. Instead of every day it was every other. Then every few. The once a week. Once a month. We got married in 2018, when it was around once a week. I quickly became pregnant (We were planning to as I've always wanted to be a mother). He didn't like my pregnant body so sex stopped. Fine by me, and then postpartum no sex for the 6 weeks and then I was too busy and tired so no sex for over a year. Perfect for me, not for the hub.
Eventually it ended up being a bad situation where he'd take what he wanted and I didn't stop him even though I absolutely did no want it. It led to me becoming ill whenever he touched me, even just his hand on my hand. I'd become nauseous and my anxiety spiked. My entire body was then physically repulsed by him. We ended up separated for a few months because of that and other reasons.
The other reasons are long but I'll summarize it to him being the stereotypical cishet male that is of the opinion that the only thing he needed to bring to the relationship was income and a dick. Also many instances of some emotional abuse generally involving him publicly shaming me and neglecting my needs. He was angry that once the child was born, he was no longer the main character in my life, the child was. I think even now (4 years after the birth) he still resents our child a bit. He believes the child should come after the couple and I believe children should always be first (In terms of importance).
I had been promised support from a family friend if I was to leave him. But that did not work out. (the person wanted me to take him to court to get as much money as I could out of him and I absolutely did not want to fuck him over.) I quickly realized that the support I thought I had was not there and I couldn't afford to not be with him. (Our child has special needs. The childcare I had lined up fell away as he got bigger and was harder to handle. I needed to quit my job to care for him. I did quit my job but it wasn't until we moved back in together.) Time away from the hub helped my body settle down and into longer was repulsed. So we moved back in together. He has not pressed for sex. He mentions sometimes how he would like it but doesn't force me anymore. I occasionally will initiate in pity. I don't want him to be unhappy but I also don't want to be unhappy.
Neither of us are happy in the current climate of sex. I love to cuddle and be close but if I do that he makes it about sex. We've talked and talked. I've said how I'd 10000000% fine woth an open relationship and he can get his sexual needs met with anyone that will have him. But he is very monogamous and doesn't want to do that. We tried scheduling it but that fell away as I didn't want to do it and I think he felt wrong/pressure from what happened before and didnt want to hurt me again.
I'd be happiest not having any sexual expectations put on me. I'd be happy not being married to him. For more than just the sex reasons. But I literally can't afford to not. Our child is a lot and most if not all day cares won't take him. Not that I can afford daycare even if there was some available and willing to take him on.
I just need to hear other opinions and perspectives.
I know what I think I want to do. But I dont really know if I should.
I come from a broken, poverty home and I dont want to raise my kid like that.
But I also don't want to raise him in a home that doesnt have loving parents.
To add to the issue, my child has moderate/severe disability (All cognitive no physical). My husband is unable to deal with the tantrums and outbursts and everything that comes along with the cognitive disabilities. He yells and restrains him when he cant take it anymore. And it makes me angry. Talking to him about it doesn't have any long term effects.
So yeah.. this is the gist of what is going on. If I can get perspective and opinion.. Like i said I know what I think I want to do but.. well Im scared. and I dont know if its the right call. Neither of us are happy but I don't think we'd be especially happy separate either. I want my kid to have a parent that wants him. I want to be happy and I want my husband to be happy.
Oh and before it is brought up we did start some couples therapy but my repulsion to him made us separate and that stopped and now with one income we cant afford it.
And if it makes any difference, we live in WA state.
Hi everyone, I decided to make this post because I honestly feel entirely alone and not really sure what to do so I just needed some other perspectives.
For context, I am a 22 year old female with parents who have been separated ever since I was a young age. I lived with my mother all throughout school until I turned 18, and ill be honest my dad never paid child support. He was also barely there but would occasionally get me a gift on Christmas or my birthday to show some sort of presence in my life. However, my mother was an alcoholic and I was constantly dealing with an emotionally abusive parent every day, on top of doing super well in school and never getting myself into trouble. I also had been working ever since I was old enough to apply (16) because she made me. Now, I am not making excuses toward a bad childhood but I feel that the context is important.
When I was 17 my senior year, I had decided I had enough of the constant misery of living with my mother and asked my dad if we could find somewhere to move. Everyone may be wondering why I didn’t ask sooner, and the reason is that my dad is not very smart (dropped out of middle school) or committed to anything and could barely provide for himself. But at this point I was desperate. We started by living off of my $800 I had saved throughout my years of working, sleeping in motels every week up until he could find a cheap place. At this point it was the end of my senior year, and I had basically completely cut my mother off at this point. Eventually he had found a 1bd apartment that we both have lived in for 4 years now, I have the bedroom while he takes the couch in the living room. I took two years off school for mental reasons but was working the entire time 40 hrs a week at a cafe before also working at a spa an additional 20 hrs per week. After being drained and starting school, I had taken a part time job which I am still at now.
My dad is very irresponsible with his money. He has a deal with our landlord to do work in exchange for rent, so in a way he is off the hook for that and only has to pay for bills and wifi. Now, I have always paid my own stuff and never asked him for money for a majority of my life. The only thing he provides for me is the rent and water bill as well as wifi of course, but I cover my own food, books for online school, clothes/phone, gas for my car, car insurance, our groceries and etc. I only work 4 days a week and get about 20 hours on average, but I have tried having two jobs and it was a lot. Again, I am in community college online and I wanted to focus on a degree, and so I actually plan to transfer to a university next year. I am paying for it all on my own, trying to save up. Last year, I had asked my dad to help me get a car. The car is used but basically brand new, and the only thing I have asked him to help with is my car payments ($384/month). Of course I am super grateful for this but I am also stuck because he basically reminds me how much I owe him (he agreed to help, it wasnt a loan I had asked from him). I do also pay $34 of the car payment, which isnt a lot, but I do pay for a lot of other things as well without his help. I give him money constantly whenever he asks for it, and there will be times he doesn’t pay it back for like a month. He has a really good job but works on his own schedule, and lately never works until a day or two before something is due. He has 0 concept of working and is at home constantly.
The money that I give him goes towards an addiction problem with cigarettes as well as another thing I dont want to specify, but know about. Anyways, this past year my dad has been completely on my ass because although I give him countless money im sick of having to wait forever to get my money back, I have started to refuse giving any but am manipulated into it by his yelling. Also, when I do ask he gets angry and he tells me hes doing his best? But never works.. If i was not trying to get a degree I would certainly look for a better job and leave, but my current one is perfect for the amount of schoolwork I have. For additional context I eat outside food often but 98% of the time I get him food too, and I understand it is a waste to eat out but he gets really mad when I come home after work and make noise in the kitchen, so its like I cant win. Not to mention, he constantly uses my car and the gas with it and doesnt refill it, asks me about every day for $20 and he gets mad at me for not getting paid more or doing more.
It is just super frustrating. I dont know what to do at this point and I know the easy solution is to move out, but when I do go to university I have no clue what I am going to do because I cannot rely on him for anything even though he barely provided for me most of my life. Any sort of advice would help, thanks.
Please stop posing negative posts such as “I’m not getting any results” or “I hate this sub-maker” “this sun makers bad” “I’ll never get results” things of that nature. it’s really toxic to the subreddit and the people reading it. Some people can’t take all of the negativity and they chose to quit bc of all of the negative things there reading here and in addiction they might not be seeing results at that moment which is also a thing that makes them quit. I’ve seen ppl completely diss subliminals in general on here! Like just leave…We need to make this subreddit a bit more positive and uplifting. It’s toxic…I really hate coming on here to see ppl post about how they haven’t gotten results in 3+ years. At that point subliminals may not be for you or you need to fix your self concept at this point. Before asking on here do a little research or ask some people in the subreddit privately. Most will be happy to help including myself my dms are always open for questions or concerns about subliminals.
Here’s some things I go by..maybe they’ll help some people
Test a subliminal for at least a month before going on here and saying n the subliminal didn’t work for you.
Why? -that’s enough time for you to see at least a slight change. Again, everyone’s different but just give it some time.
If still no results switch the sub and also take a look at yourself. It is hard not to obsess but obsessing will get you no where it’s like taking 10 steps back.
“What about bad sub makers” -well we don’t really have any currently rn tbh except for rose subliminals who has somehow gotten back on YouTube. But aside from her there are no “bad sub makers” I believe moza may use some witchcraft but if you don’t want that JUST DONT LISTEN. Don’t deter others from listning just because you didn’t get results or had a bad experience.
We need to remember we’re the ones in control of our results and realities so stop blaming the subliminal makers.
There doing this for us.
We need to keep this group positive and be a help to people who are new to subliminals
Much love <33
Like my father and his, I started losing my hair at 22 now approaching 30 I have made the choice to accept it. My first concern was how much more money I would be spending on razors, but after looking in the mirror for to long I feel even less confident. The worst though, is this sickening paranoia that because I'm a white dude with bald head in the south I will fall into a category I wish wasn't real, but I have already been exposed to casual racism at work and the last thing I need in my life is some 50 year old project manager seeing me and saying things like "looks like someone is finally showing their true colors" or "what did (bipoc employee name) say? You tell me if there's a problem". I don't want to believe a haircut will put me in the position to leave my job, I like my job, and love the coworkers I choose to be around but the highschool age immaturity of the higher-ups creates ridiculous drama.
Thanks for reading, needed to vent, any and all input is very much appreciated.
After a couple years of learning full-stack development, last year I finally managed to make the career switch and land a job as a junior dev.
I make less money at this job (and I came from a nonprofit so I wasn't making much before either), and I've noticed most of the work we do is really hacky, and my coworkers generally don't follow all the best practices I spent so much time learning about (including using git or any frameworks whatsoever 🤦♂️). Don't want to rag on them too much, but it's just a little shop that churns out WordPress sites (and occasionally other custom builds) for lots of random customers at a quick pace.
Besides those things, I do like the culture and the people, but I'm supporting a growing family and am starting to fear that if I stay too long I'll grow stagnant as a developer, I won't be able to stay afloat financially, and I won't have accumulated enough new and useful skills to eventually make the jump to a more serious tech company.
I enjoy programming, and don't want to limit myself to just web development though I don't mind it, so I'm pretty open. Any advice? Should I pick a random other language or field (like data analytics) and just start learning from scratch? Or is there a smart way to use my time at my current company that can help boost me more in the future?
Also how long should I stick around? As of now I'd only have 1 full year of official work experience as a web developer on my resume.