Walmart artificial christmas trees

Reasonably priced trees?

2023.05.31 17:15 EmX84 Reasonably priced trees?

Anyone know where they sell reasonably priced trees? Walmart and Home Depot are all $50 and over, and when you looking for 30+ trees that adds up way to fast.
submitted by EmX84 to Winnipeg [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 17:06 mad_queen-_- If you need a laugh

In 2020 I got my first therapy cat. I remember the shelter lady telling us not to let him get underneath the cages. I thought he was just a little scared. Nope, he just likes getting into things he not supposed to. At my apartment, I had a mattress in the living room up against the couch. It just made things easier with my daughter to have everything in one room. My cat, who I initially named Milkshakes after the cat from Grim Adventures of Billy &Mandy, would claw along the sides of the mattress all night long and viciously attacked everyone's feet all night long. He would try to get the goods from my daughter's diaper before I closed it up🤢. He would dash out the door every time we opened it and then immediately get scared bc he didn't want to actually go outside. He just wanted to be naughty. As he got older, my fixed male cat to a liking to a rainbow alpaca of my daughter's. He would sit there humping it day and night while looking into the eyes of anyone and everyone around while doing so. It was pretty gross. He would contort its head until it was on his weiner. He would do it with guests around too. I had a skills coach that would meet me weekly and he would embarrass tf out of me. It's the eye contact. Very unsettling. I changed his name to Mr. Poopy and it's the only fitting name. That guy is a turd, but I'd never flush him. When we moved, we threw away his alpaca. It was really gross and stinky with matted fur. I expected that this would make it stop. That was a mistake. Now he makes eye contact while he humps the comforter ON TOP OF US all night long. He goes for the pillows too. I have to constantly push him off me at night. He became obsessed with a female cat outside. She was malnourished too, so we took her in. She's not fixed, so for about 2weeks every 2months, we have to just keep the basement door open, otherwise they just go at it in front of my daughter and her friends. I was trying to film my daughter opening Christmas presents and the cats kept trying to do it under the tree all the while, growling and yowling🤣🤮. He also gets into everything he's not supposed to. If you open a cupboard or drawer, he immediately jumps in and he is NOT small. He's huge. One of the biggest cats I've ever seen. He's almost the size of a Savanah cat. His latest habit is pawing at the toilet paper all night until he has a big pile of it on the floor. What a turd!😆
submitted by mad_queen-_- to CPTSD [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 16:15 igorcarbex16 Bully Soundtrack References & Similarities in Details...


https://preview.redd.it/ahl29u0mu73b1.jpg?width=453&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=0d37661c842a119f0ed83740ec3eebdaf7b35e47
Hello Bully it's me again, The Bully soundtrack composed by the genius Shawn Lee is pretty rad, so as a music enthusiastic, i want to share this post for people really obsessed with the Bully songs like me, tried to include every song in the game like as puzzle pieces getting together with the greatest amount, most accurate and similar as possible in one sitting, with some help around the internet, personal discoveries and songs already mentioned for yourselves so thank you nonetheless, and sorry for the repetition. Unfortunately some will still be missing so "a little help"/hits for these unreferenced sounds are very welcome.
Some songs are pretty obvious but others looks well hidden, but that's the fun of it, not every song is a sample, they just sound alike or has interpolations.
I know it would be boring to reading all of this so also dedicated this YouTube playlist in details for, so that you can check thoroughly for a more accurate comparison: 😎👍 - Have Fun! https://m.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLtZ1VivcLOsiTtYHUrK-xw8OHZZAeOzRf
★ Main Storyline
·Welcome to Bullworth (Menu theme): Suspiria Theme - Goblin
·This Is Your School: The Duck - Shawn Lee
·The Setup/Bait/The Gym is Burning: Organ Donor - DJ Shadow
·Slingshot/Revenge on Mr. Burton "Part 3" (Fun): My Sweet Lord - George Harrionson the ex-Beatles & Bill Preston
·Save Algie: Love My Way - Psychedelic Furs
·Defend Bucky/The Eggs/Weed KilleStronghold Assault (Action): Shake, Shake, Shake - KC & The Sunshine Band, A Little Less Conversation - Elvis Presley, Hocus Pocus - Focus
·That B****/The Diary/Jealous Johnny/Paparazzi: This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody) - Talking Heads
·The Candidate/Cook's Date: Oh Yeah - Yello
·Halloween/The Big Prank: The Chase - Shawn Lee, Burning Bridges - The Republic From The Getaway Game - Shawn Lee
·Help Gary: Cannonball - Breeders (it also reminds me the "X-Files Theme - Mark Snow" but this is overthinking)
·Character Sheets: Agent Woodrow - The Woodies
·Hattrick vs. Galloway: Cat Blues - Seatbelts (Drum Patterns)
·Movie Tickets (Sneaking On A Date): All Mine, Glory Box - both by Portished
·Carnival Date (Romance): Kiss The Sky - Shawn Lee's Ping Pong Orchestra (also features in "Tales from the Bordelands Episode 2")
·Prep Challenge/Boxing Challenge: Drums on Phasing - Joe Ufer (Sample)
·Race the Vale/Lola's Race: Casio VL-1 Tone (Sampler) *a lot of songs use this instrument for samples, for Bully this is predominant in bike races, it also reminds the iconic song "Funkytown - Lipps inc."
·Beach Rumble: Tenebre 12 mix - Claudio Simonetti
·Tad's House: Billie Jean (Bass Only) - Michael Jackson
·Tagging/Making a Mark (Wildstyle): Chic - Good Times
·Wrong Part of Town/Busting In, Part I: Prog Punk, Psyche Drums (*After The Release!) - Shawn Lee's Ping Pong Orchestra
·The Tenements/Norton Boss Fight: Human Fly - Cramps, I Wanna Be Your Dog - Iggy Pop & the Stooges
·The Rumble/Defender of the Castle (Epic Confrontation): Matador - X Mal Deutschland (as the "wildstyle" music many songs are similar to this, i listed the most accurate or the most fun imo, at least)
·Nerd Challenge/Consumo Arcade (Menu): Sakura, Sakura - Traditional Japanese Folk Song
·Nerd Challenge/Consumo (Main): Four Thousand Years of Chinese History - SNK Sound Team from Fatal Fury: King of Fighters Game
·Glass House/Smash It Up (Destruction/Vandalism): Rapture - Blondie, The Breaks - Kurtis Blow
·Nice Outfit: Odetta - Hit or Miss (Drum Patterns), Dig Your Own Hole - Chemical Brothers (Drum Patterns)
·The Big Game (Nerds "Agent")/Revenge on Mr. Burton "Part 2": Big Bad Wolf - Shawn Lee
·Rats in the Library: You Rock My World - Michael Jackson, Spies In The Wires - Cabaret Voltaire
·Preppies Vandalized (Punishment): D12 40 Oz. - Mr. Stan
·Busting In, Part II/Paper Route: Identity - X-Ray Spec, Mongoloid - Devo
·Showdown at the Plant (Overture): "Saracens Theme" - The Warriors Game
·Complete Mayhem (Street Fight): Criminal - Fiona Apple (also resembles "All Caps - Madvillain-Madvillainy or MF Doom" and "Intermezzo 2 - Mr. chop" but this was released in 2009)
·School's Out (End Credits): Walk On The Wild Side (Bass and Rhythm Pattern) - Lou Reed by Velvet Underground
\Christmas is Here, Small Offences, Discreet Deliveries, The Collector, Mailbox Armageddon and Go See The Principal doesn't feature a unique theme or has any song.*
★ Miscellaneous, Ambience & Shop themes
·Chase Prefect and Police: The Shaft intro and end themes - Isaac Hayes, Beat Dis (12 Version) - Bomb The Bass
·Chase Adults/A Little Help: Take California - Propellerheads, Secret Agent - Bjorn Lynne
·Detention/Mowing Laws - Unused track from The Warrior Game (it doesn't have an actual name, sorry)
·Bike Race 1: Casio VL-1 Tone (Sampler)
·Bike Race 2: Sonic CD Game - Wacky Workbench Zone - Bad Future
·Kart Race (Main) or "Lowrider": You Baby - The Turtles
·Kart Race (Beta): Baba Hya - Lafayette Afro Rock Band
·General Store "Yum Yum Market": Cover Girl - Gabriele Ducros
·Hair Saloon (Poor) "The Final Cut": Punky Dragster - Tele Music
·Hair Saloon (Rich) "Old Bullworth Vale": Dance Feeling - Tele Music
·Clothing Store (Poor) "Worn In Used Clothing": Disco Revisited - Tele Music
·Clothing Store (Rich) "Aquaberry Outlet" (*After The Release!): Now That Is Jazz - Charlie's Bistro Ensemble
·Janitor's Room: Lonesome Heart Swing - Dennis Caplinger
·Carnival Ambience "Billy Crane's Traveling Carnival": Golden Brown - Stranglers
·Box Club Ambience "Glass Jaw Boxing Club": Icy Nation - Tele Music
·Preppie's Hideout Beach "Lighthouse" (*After The Release!): With My Maker I Am One - Chill Coffehouse Drip
·Dragon's Wing Comic Store (*After The Release!): Daniel Loves Singing - C. Allocco
·Nerd's Hideout "Dragon's Wing Comic Store" (Under): Soaring Song - Tele Music
·Jock's Hideout "Jock's Clubhouse": Grand Theft Auto (Song) - Craig Conner
·Monkey Fling (Menu): it reresemble Super Mario World Overworld theme
·Future Street Racer (Main): The Doom - Shadow The Hedgehog 2005 Game
★ Xmas Themes
Holiday themes features various artists, this list is based on the ones made by Shawn lee itself for his album "A Very Ping Pong Christmas: Funky Treats form Santa's Bag", The original composers is on the song description.
·Balls of Snow: Carol of the Bells - Mykola Leontovych
·Miracle on Bullworth St.: Jingle Bells - James Lord Pierpont
·Rudy the Red Nosed Santa: O Come All Ye Faithful (Adeste Fideles) - John Francis Wade & Frederick Oakeley
·Nutcrackin': Deck The Halls - Thomas Oliphant, Little Dummer Boy - Katherine Kennicott Davis, Harry Simeone & Henry Onorati
·Bike Shop (Xmas) "Shiny Bikes": Let it Snow! - Gary Hoey (Dean Martin is the original composer) (Most famous by Frank Sinatra)
·Clothing Store (Poor) (Xmas) "Worn In"/Clothing Store (Rich) (Xmas) "Aquaberry": Jingle Bells (Dan The Automator) - Dean Martin, *the Aquaberry outlet uses a different tone in jazz
·Janitor's Room (Xmas)/Hair Saloon (Poor)(Xmas) "The Final Cut": Up On The House Top (Ho, Ho, Ho) - Gene Autry
·Dragon's Wing Comic Store (Xmas)/Hair Saloon (Rich)(Xmas)"Old Bullworth Vale": We Wish You a Merry Christmas - Traditional English (Britain) Folk Song
·Xmas Tree: Dance Of The Sugar-Plum Fairy - Piotr Ilitch Tchaikovski
\The General Store "Yum Yum Market" reuses a song collage of various themes as Deck the Halls, We Wish You a Merry Christmas and Jingle Bells in that order on looping.*
★ Classes
·Music classes features American Folk and American March Songs since the game takes place in USA
Class 1: Turkey In The Straw
Class 2: Masterpiece Fanfare
Class 3: She'll Be Coming 'Round the Mountain
Class 4: Liberty Bell March (also known as "Monty Python Theme")
Class 5: The Washington Post March (also sounds similar to "Willian Tell Act" by Charlie Chaplin)
·English Class: Piéces de Clavecin en concert; La Timide - Jean-Philippe Rameau
·Art Class: Come With the Night (Drum Patterns) - Sugar Stick (also resembles "Test Area - Broadcast" or "Serpent Magique - Tangerine Dream")
·Photography Class/BMX Park (*After The Release!): Automatic - Shawn Lee & AM (for observation, the Bike Park and Photography theme are slightly different, not the same)
·Biology: Dara Factor One - Weather Report Music, Heist in Helsinki (*After The Release!) - Shawn Lee's Ping Pong Orchestra
\Geography class uses a medley of characteristic instruments and sounds of world nations*
★ Cliques & Boss fights
·Vendetta Non-Clique: Ode To Billie Joe - Lou Donaldson
·Vendetta Bullies: Skin Therapy - Mr. Dibbs, And on the Sixth Day - Pat Williams
·Vendetta Nerds/Stronghold Assault (Nerd Boss Fight): Casio VL-1 Tone (Sampler), Da Da Da - Trio (not only the song but the nerds cliques itself looks heavy inspired by the movie Revenge of the Nerds, some themes would also fit for Nerds in particular "Burning Down The House by Talking Heads")
·Vendetta Preppies: Billie Jean - Michael Jackson, Whip it - Devo
·Vendetta Greasers: Play For Today - The Cure, Private Idaho - B-52's, Disorder - Joy Division
·Vendetta Jocks: Amen, Brother - The Winstons, Drums Away - The Simon Song (Drums Intro), The Assembly Line - Commodores (this one use one of the most famous samples in music the "Amen Break" by Winstons as initially mentioned)
·Vendetta Dropouts/Townie Challenge: Tédio - Biquíni Cavadão, I Love Rock 'N Roll - The Arrows (Original Composers) *the guitar riff and bass pattern is extremely similar to "Pretty Fly by Offspring" but the song "Tédio" is alot older and still more accurate to the townies theme
·Russell in the Hole: Firestarter (Drum Patterns) - Prodigy, Devotion (Voice of Paradise) - Ten City
·Dishonorable Fight: Eye of the Tiger, Burning Heart - both by Survivor
·Fighting Johnny Vincent: Boogie Woodie - The Beach Boys, Caldonia Boogie - Louis Jordan (also covered by James Brown) *this song line is also referred as "The Walking Bass" featured in many Classic Rock songs
·The Big Game (Jock Boss Fight): Just Like Heaven, A Forest - The Cure, Harmonia - Dino
·Showdown at the Plant: Headhunter - Front 242, Are You Red..Y - The Clash
·Final Showdown: Underwater March - Klaus Badelt, 2001 NBA Ultimate Player (Film Score) *God of War (2018) Game also has a similar tone in "Spartan Rage" overture by Bear McCreary
★... Uncertain? ...Suggestions
·Bully Main Theme (Running Theme): Maniac - Michael Sembello, the synthesizer effect looks an interpolation of the xylophone effect used in the game.
·Overworld (Walking Theme) - The Phantom of the Opera Motion Picture Overture (this also resambles "echoes" by pink floyd but that peculiar melody is more predominant in this theme), Let's Ge Started (Bass Only) - Black Eyed Peas, it looks heavily inspired by Dario Argento movies (as the overall soundtrack).
·Here's to you Ms. Philips/Last Minute Shopping/Cook's Crush/Discretion Assured/Finding Johnny Vincent/Revenge on Mr. Burton "Part 1" (The Search): Sounds similar to "Tenant - Siouxsie And The Banshees", people often confuse this theme to "Cheating Time" but the track is named "Here's to you Ms. Philips" as does the mission, it also resembles a Giorgio Gaslini piece an italian jazz pianist or the american compositor Henry Mancini the creator of Pink Panther iconic theme.
·Panty Raid/Galloway Away/Cheating Time (Stealth): Love Theme From "The Godfather" or "Speak Softly, Love" or just The Godfather Theme from Nino Rota a renowned italian composer, written by Larry Kusik, also resembles the song "Hey by Pixies".
·Comic Klepto: Where’d You Go - Fort Minor e Jonah Matranga (interpolation), also resembles Gramatik, Transplants, Flobots or X-Ecutiornes style of song.
·Funhouse Fun/ Funhouse (Ambience): Carnival of the Animals; Introduction and Royal March of the Lion ("Marche Royale du Lions") - Camille Saint-Saëns (interpolation)
·Funhouse Graveyard "Carnival Funhouse Graveyard" (Unused/Beta): Lux Aeterna - Clint Mansell & Kronos Quartet; Requiem For A Killer Movie Score
·Shop Class "Auto Repair Shop": Sounds similar to Star Guitar - Chemical Brothers, Cities in the Dust - Siouxie And The Banshees
·Math Class (Beta): Sounds similar to Nightmare on Elm Street Theme
·Gym Class/Lockpicking/Jocks Challenge: Sounds similar to "Resucitó" an old catholic song
·Bike Shop "Shiny Bikes": Sounds similar to Billy Club - Junkie XL, Horndog - Overseer
·Greaser's Hideout/Greaser's Challenge "Blue Balls Pool House" "Tattoo Parlor" & "The Happy Mullet": Sounds similar to In-Cut Overdrive - Tomonori Sawada; Sega Rally 2006 Game
·Townies/Dropouts Hideout "Dropout Hangout": Sounds similar to Babel - Covenant
★ Still Missing... Unknown?
·Chemistry Class: although i can't find a matching song it doesn't sound like music per se
·Math Class (Main): definitely a funky/soul tune, unfortunately i couldn't find a corresponding song for it
·Nut Shots: resembles Gradius songs a game by Konami or AiAce Combat a Namco Game
I REALLY LOVE BUNNIES, THEY'RE SO NICE!
I Hope you like it 😎👍
submitted by igorcarbex16 to bully [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 16:10 chuckhustmyre [TH] 100 CEMETERY (Part Two of Two) by Chuck Hustmyre

When the old man got within range, John kicked at him with his good leg, but the old timer was quick, much quicker than he looked. He ducked to his right, side stepping John's lashing foot, then darted in and touched the tip of the prod to John's leg. Fire--that's what it felt like. White hot fire. A jolt went through John's body that made his eyeballs hurt. And just like that, the old man slipped in again and jabbed him in the stomach. Then, as John rolled onto his belly, the tip touched his back.
John curled into a ball and hugged his knees to his chest.
"Get through that door, boy," the old man said. "Move it, now!" Like herding an ornery animal.
And like an animal, John Burke responded, lifting himself onto all fours and crawling toward the exit. Halfway across the floor, the old man jammed the cattle prod against John's ass. He cried out and scampered through the door.
As soon they were out of the room, the old man clicked his cheek a couple of times like he was calling a dog. "Get on your feet, like a good boy." John struggled to his feet as the door closed behind him and the bolts slammed into place. He stood at one end of a narrow passage, dark, except for a single bulb hanging from the ceiling at the far end. Again, John felt the prod touch his back.
"Get!" the old man said.
John limped toward the light.
The passage emptied into a windowless room, low ceilinged and big. The old man forced him into a chute--a cattle chute. Horizontal steel poles on each side formed a walkway barely wide enough for a man's shoulders. The poles were stacked four high, the top pole about five feet off the ground. Every six or eight feet stood a vertical brace.
The old man closed and locked a sliding wooden door behind them, then bent and slipped between two of the horizontal poles. Outside the chute, he prodded John to keep him moving. As John walked toward the end, the old man thumped him two or three times with the prod but didn't shock him.
Suddenly, an overpowering stench hit John and his feet stopped moving. He looked to the right, toward the source of the smell, and saw a stainless steel table, on top of which lay a man's lifeless body. He was on his belly with his head turned and John could see the face of the man who'd been goaded out of the room just before him. The white-haired old lady stood beside the table gripping an electric carving knife in one latexed hand, while with her other gloved hand she pressed the man's leg firmly against the table. Bile gurgled up into John's throat as the old lady thumbed the switch on the carving knife and sliced a hunk of meat from the back of the dead man's thigh.
John spewed vomit and dropped to his knees. "Get up, boy," he heard from behind him as the prod juiced his lower back. John screamed in pain as he staggered to his feet. "Move it," the old man said. With legs like jelly, John stumbled forward.
The cut he'd worked into the leather belt was just to the right of the steel loop through which the handcuffs ran. Only an eighth of an inch of leather remained. Using his body, John shielded his hands from the old man's view while he tugged on the handcuffs and hobbled along.
The sides of the chute closed in on him as he reached the end. Near panic, John tried to turn around, but before he could the old man slid a gate closed behind him that penned him in.
Trapped.
From the corner of his eye, John watched the old man. Saw him step towards a workbench against the wall, fifteen feet away, and toss the cattle prod onto it. He pulled a ballpeen hammer down from a wall above the bench. It had a big stainless steel head with a foot long wooden handle. The old man turned and walked toward John with a casual, bored look on his face, just another day in the slaughterhouse.
Bent as far forward as he could, John thrust his hips back and jerked his cuffed hands forward, but the leather belt held. Behind him he heard the old man's shoes scrape the cement floor. Desperate, John twisted his hands to the right. The leather still held. Just an eighth of an inch between a chance for escape and a hammer to the back of the head.
A shoe scuff on the floor. Afraid to look, John stared at his hands. He groaned as he thrust his hips to the right and jerked his hands to the left. The leather tore and the belt pulled free from his waist.
"Where you think you're going?" the old man said.
John ducked and heard the top pole ring as the ballpeen hammer glanced off of it. With the belt still dangling from his handcuffs, John doubled over and stepped between the two middle poles on his left side. To his right the old man cursed him and swung the hammer between the bars. The hammer thumped into John's right hip but he didn't stop. Once through the bars he ran--hobbled on his painful ankle--toward the wall, trying to put as much distance between him and the old man as possible.
"Momma, momma, he got loose!"
"Catch him quick 'fore he gets away," the old lady screamed.
John Burke was lost. He didn't know where he was our how to get out. He turned, saw the old man race around the end of the chute, hammer cocked over his shoulder. John's back was to the wall. Wildly, he glanced around for something he could use. There was nothing.
To his left, twenty feet away was the corner of the room and a closed door.
The old man saw John looking. "You'll never get out." But he slowed down, approaching cautiously, angling toward the door to cut off John's only escape route.
The old man looked nervous about the door. John broke and ran. Waves of pain shot up his leg from his swollen ankle but he ignored it. The old man lunged toward the door to intercept. John tried to stop and start, throw a fake at the old man, but his ankle folded and he hit the floor.
The old man dropped to one knee beside him and raised the hammer over his head. "Got you!"
But as the killer blow came down, John shifted slightly to the side and the hammer struck the cement beside his head, sending tiny chips flying into his face. He lashed out with his good foot, missed the old man's head but caught him in the ribs. As the old man grunted and toppled over, John got to his feet and struggled to the door.
Locked.
John twisted the knob and screamed in rage. The old man stood up. Mounted on the wall next to the door was a gray metal circuit box, the handle protruding from its side angled up in the on position. An electrical shut off.
"Get him, poppy," the old woman screamed from the other side of the room. A nice old couple who called each other momma and poppy.
John grabbed the handle with both hands, shot a glance at the old man, saw him bearing down, and pulled.
Lights out. Total darkness.
Just in time John ducked. He heard the old man grunt as the hammer dug into the drywall. With his manacled hands, John shoved the old man, then ran along the wall to his left. Moving through the dark it felt like a mile. The old lady screamed.
Cuffed hands out in front with the torn leather belt dangling from them, John ran into the wall and turned right. He had no idea where to go or what to do. Just knew he had to put as much distance as he could between him and the old man. At the next corner he turned right again. Just up ahead he heard the old lady. "Poppy, I can't see."
He slowed down, tried to catch his breath. Then the lights came on. Poppy must have gotten to the switch. John found himself next to the stainless steel butchering table, and face-to-face with the old lady. With the power on, her electric carving knife started buzzing.
"I got him, poppy!" she said and chopped at him with the knife.
John jerked his head back as the humming blade passed less than an inch from his eyes.
"Momma!" the old man screamed.
John looked across the big room at the old man by the door. Hammer swinging from his hand, he started to run towards them but had to go around the cattle chute. The old lady again cut at John but this time he managed to catch her wrist in his hands. As he kicked her in the shin he heard one of his bare toes crack, but she loosened her grip on the knife and he was able to jerk it out of her hand.
The old man rounded the end of the chute and howled in rage as he saw them struggling. Momma clawed at John's eyes with both hands, but he managed to close them just as her nails raked his face. Carving knife in hand, he slashed at the old lady. The vibrating blade ripped into the side of her neck and cut across her throat. She gurgled up a foul smelling blast of air from her open trachea that made John gag. With her eyes wide open, the old lady looked stunned as her knees folded and she collapsed to the ground.
John Burke turned and the old man was right on top of him, screaming, swinging the hammer at his head. As John raised the carving knife, the hammer snapped the blade off and knocked it from his hand. The old man lunged closer, grabbed him by the throat with his left hand and raised the hammer again.
John threw an awkward jab with his shackled hands and hit the old man in the face with just enough force to stun him into losing his grip on John's neck. Then with a two-handed uppercut to the gut, this one with a little more behind it, he doubled the old man over, then ran for the door.
Standing in front of the door, he jerked down the power switch and again shrouded the room in darkness. He raised his good leg and kicked the wooden door as hard as he could. It gave just a little. Behind him he heard the old man crying, and something else--things being knocked over, things hitting the floor, the sounds of searching.
As John kicked again, his bad ankle screamed in pain, yet still the door held. He caught his breath, raised his good leg and managed one more kick. This time the knob splintered off and the door flew open. Stairs led up.
Behind him, a two-count metallic click echoed through the room. The unmistakable sound of a shell being chambered. A shotgun.
Fighting back the pain, John loped up the stairs as the shotgun blasted behind him. Upstairs he found himself in an empty kitchen. He moved down a short hallway that opened into a room he recognized, the den of the old lady's house. It was dark outside and only a few lights were on inside the house.
Footsteps on the cellar stairs.
Frantically, John looked around, seeing the big bay windows, but no door to the outside. He knocked the dead telephone to the ground, snatched up the end table, and heaved it through one of the windows.
Outside the air was warm and muggy, the ground soft like after a rain. Naked, except for the handcuffs and leather belt hanging from them, John staggered toward the woods just beyond the house. As he reached the first trees he heard another shotgun blast behind him, heard glass shatter, heard pellets tearing through the trees to his right.
Into the trees, getting some of them between him and the house in case the old man ripped off another shot.
"Murderer! I'll kill you," the old timer yelled through the trees. Almost funny, a minute ago the old man trying to bash his brains in with a hammer but still had the nerve to call him a murderer. Not to mention the sweet old lady carving a man like a Christmas turkey.
John turned forty-five degrees to the right. Choosing a zig-zag over a straight line. A minute later he heard another shot, then the pellets ripped into the branches off to his left. A frustration shot. The old man had guessed he'd turn but he'd guessed the wrong way.
He'd gotten out of shape. Just a few minutes into the woods he was puffing like a steam train, a stitch like a knife twisting into his side. John could feel his ankle starting to swell. Time for the zag so he turned left, crossed through what he guessed was fifty or sixty yards of woods, then suddenly burst into a clearing--the cemetery. The high three-quarter moon cast short, dark shadows from the tombstones. Blackness in a sea of night.
Something crashed through the brush behind him in the distance, followed by bark of a big dog. John had trouble as he stepped over the low spiked fence that surrounded the graveyard. For a second he had to put all of his weight on his bad leg and came close to impaling himself.
John remembered another fence, a six-foot iron one that spanned the front of the property, the half-inch thick bars thrust at the sky like black spears. If it circled the whole property, how the hell was he going to get out?
The barking grew louder.
As he limped between the gravestones, John heard the old man cursing in the distance, farther away than the dog, but getting closer. Terror's icy hand gripped John Burke's heart. His feet stopped moving and he dropped down onto a soft, moist patch of earth and leaned his back against a marble slab that marked someone's final resting place, someone whose troubles were over for good. John put his head into his hands as despair washed over him.
He wasn't going to get away. Not on a bad ankle. Not with his hands cuffed. Not from a madman with a dog and shotgun. A madman who kept humans like cattle, who beat men to death with a hammer, whose wife ran a human butcher shop. They were close, the old man and his dog. John could hear the dog tearing through the underbrush just inside the woods, just beyond the cemetery fence. In a minute it would all be over. He wondered if Gail would ever find out what happened to him? To die like this, in a bone yard, victim to a crazy old man and his even crazier wife.
Fear, despair, hopelessness--these feelings surged through John as a sob racked his body so hard it bounced his back off the marble tombstone and shot a bolt of pain down his spine. Then, as if cleansed by fire, those feelings melted like snow, replaced by something new, by something better, by something that fueled him--Rage.
Perched in front of the grave next to him was a thick marble urn, holding a bouquet of long dead flowers. John rolled to it, grabbed the urn in both hands, and dumped out the withered flora. He felt the comforting weight of the urn, heavy enough to crush a dog's skull, or a man's.
He wasn't going to make it easy. If they were going to kill him, they'd have to work for it. The headstones were too small to hide behind unless he crouched down and John didn't want to crouch down and hide. He was through hiding, besides, his ankle couldn't take much crouching. Better to let the dog see him, try to get rid of the mutt before the old man made it out of the woods.
The underbrush got quiet. The dog was out of the woods. No more barking. The moonlight and the shadows played tricks on John's eyes. A glimpse of movement at the fence then nothing. He strained his eyes, willing them to see through the darkness but it was his ears that responded, picking up the quick thumping of padded feet on the wet grass. The sound coming from his left. John raised the urn and turned, then heard it behind him, much closer. A throaty growl. He tried to spin around but the furry beast hit him in the back.
Claws raked his bare shoulder blades as he slammed face first into the ground and the marble urn flew from his hands, useless. Sharp teeth gripped the back of his head and shook it like the stuffed head of a doll. His scalp tore--he actually felt it--as the dog growled and bit harder.
"Get him, boy!" the old man shouted from somewhere near the edge of the woods.
John used his good left leg to push into the ground and roll. The dog tightened its grip on John's head and tried to roll with him but John used his arms to topple the German Shepherd off of him. As the brute tried to regain his feet, John kept rolling until he was on top with the dog pinned under him. The canine's jaws sprung open, looking for something to bite as John grabbed the animal's big head, one hand on each side, and forced the handcuff chain and part of the leather belt into the back of its mouth.
With his naked body pressing down on the dog, John forced the Shepherd's head back. The handcuff chain cut into the roof of the dog's mouth as John pushed back harder and harder. The beast's nails ripped at John's chest and thighs, but still he forced the big head back until the dog's agonized yelping was cut short by a loud crack, like the dry snap of a rotten branch, as its neck broke and body went limp.
John rolled off of the dead dog and struggled to his feet. The old man yelled, "Did you get him, Butch? Did you get him?" John turned toward the sound of the man's voice and saw him stumble out of the woods, just on the other side of the fence, shotgun held across his chest. The old man's eyes locked on the animal lying on the ground. "Butch!" he cried, voice cracked with emotion Then he raised his shotgun.
John dropped behind a headstone just as a blast ripped through the air. Pellets smacked into the other side of the stone. Then, as the double click of a new shell being racked into the chamber echoed across the graveyard, John scrambled away on all fours, keeping his head below the top of the tombstones.
By the time he reached the cemetery fence, John could barely move. His breath came in ragged gasps; his chest, shoulders, and thighs were on fire; and the back of his neck felt wet and sticky. He lifted his cuffed hands over his head and wiped at his neck. His palms came away covered with blood, blood that looked almost black in the moonlight.
One foot got tangled going over the fence and John fell, landing with a thud on the other side. Behind him, fifty yards at most, he could hear the old man's quick shuffle coming across the cemetery. The old man mumbling and cursing to himself. Once John got into the tree line he felt a little safer, something between him and muzzle of that shotgun. But the going was slow. Much tougher than before. He started to feel dizzy. The dog had torn him up and he knew he was bleeding badly.
He'd made it this far but knew there was no way he could make it all the way back home, at least not tonight. Too tired and too hurt. But with the dog dead, all he had to do was shake the old man off his trail, then hole up somewhere until daylight. In the morning he would parallel the road just inside the trees to keep out of sight. His house was only two miles away. He would make it even if he had to crawl on his hands and knees the whole way.
He ran into the fence. Six feet tall, made of pointed wrought iron bars, no more than ten inches apart. Impossible to slip between them. The bars braced by two thin rectangular, iron beams that ran the length of the fence. One, a foot from the ground; the other, a foot from the top.
John hadn't gained any distance on the old man. He could hear his thrashing back in the trees, his slow, steady pace, his mumbling punctuated by curses.
There was only one way to get out and that was over the fence. John set his feet on the bottom support and grabbed the top crossbar with both hands, but with his wrists cuffed he couldn't spread his hands out. He couldn't climb.
He managed to pull himself up so his chin was over the top of the fence and then swung his good leg up. It didn't go high enough. Arms straining, he swung it up harder and managed to hook his heel on the top support, between two of the bars. That's when he lost his grip.
John fell but his foot stayed. He heard his ankle crack and he screamed. Caught between the two vertical bars and the horizontal support, his bare foot was wedged in tight and he hung upside down, naked, like a stuck pig being bled in a slaughterhouse.
The old man stepped out from the trees, shotgun held across his chest like a soldier. Fifteen feet from John, he raised it to his shoulder and grinned as he pulled the trigger. CLICK.
"Goddamit!" He racked the pump, took aim, and pulled the trigger again. Another empty click. This time he slammed the pump back and stared into the open chamber. "Son of a bitch," he mumbled, then grabbed the barrel in a two handed grip.
He swung it like a baseball bat at John's head and all John Burke could do was close his eyes. Just before the wooden stock crashed into his skull, he heard himself say, "Gail."
* * *
Gail Burke was on the toilet, in the middle of peeing, when the doorbell rang. "John," she heard herself say. "God, please let it be John." She pulled on her jeans and ran to the door, didn't even flush. But it wasn't John. It was a man, old but distinguished looking in a dark suit with a pale blue tie draped in front of a starched white shirt. She glanced behind him and saw a van parked in her driveway. Not a minivan, but a full-sized, white work van, windowless except for the driver and passenger doors. No name on the side.
"Can I help you?" she asked, losing hope her caller had anything to do with John.
He raised his hands slightly and she noticed they held a round plastic container. Rubbermaid, or Tupperware, with a lid on it. "Yes," she said.
"Mrs. Burke?"
Gail nodded.
My name is Muller, Frank Muller. He nodded to the right. "I live on Cemetery Road."
She gave him a brief smile.
"I've read about your...your husband's disappearance in the paper."
At first she'd had a lot of visitors like this. Well-wishers, sympathizers, but it had been two weeks and people had stopped coming by. Mostly, she guessed they thought John's disappearance maybe wasn't so mysterious after all. Middle-aged man, married for a dozen years, suddenly takes off. Maybe found a young girl. No mystery there. But she knew that wasn't what he'd done. Something terrible had happened. She could feel it.
"Thank you," was all she could think of to say.
He raised his hands again. "I've brought you something. Chili, my wife's secret recipe."
She looked at the container. The two-gallon size. That's a lot of chili, she thought. She caught a whiff of it as he slipped one hand under the container and lifted part of the lid with the other. He said, "Chock full of beef and beans. Put some meat on your bones."
Gail felt her face flush. Her jeans hung loosely on her hips. She'd lost ten pounds since John disappeared and hadn't had it to spare to begin with. "Thank you. Thank you very much, Mr..." She couldn't even remember the gentleman's name.
"Muller," he said.
"Of course," she said quickly. "Thank you again, Mr. Muller." Gail reached for the container. "To be honest I haven't felt much like cooking and that smells delicious. Please tell Mrs. Muller that I said--"
Mr. Muller shook his head. "Buried her recently."
"Oh, I'm sorry to hear that."
As she took the chili from him, he forced a smile. "I made it but it's her recipe so if it's good she gets the credit." He laughed a more genuine laugh. "And if it's bad, I'll take the blame."
She felt the heat through the plastic. They said goodbye and Gail Burke went inside to eat a bowl of Mrs. Muller's secret recipe. She felt her stomach growl with hunger. If it tasted as good as it smelled, maybe she'd have two bowls.
THE END
submitted by chuckhustmyre to shortstories [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 16:04 KiddKnyghtMarez I Got Caught Up With Some Loan Sharks, And Someone Totally Unexpected Saved My Ass.

Since freshman year I’ve been in and out of trouble, often getting myself in all kinds of nasty situations. It was around that time my grades started to drop and my parents got more complaints from my teachers. I hung with the wrong crowds and would often get suspended. Over the years things got worse. My problems left school and became minor offenses with the law. Everything from shoplifting to vandalism. I can’t even count the amount of times I’ve been dragged home in a squad car, only to be snatched in and scolded by my dad.
In the middle of senior year not much had changed. My grades were overall still piss poor and I almost got busted for selling prescription pills. At that point I had messed up so much that my parents finally decided that they’ve had enough. They gave me an ultimatum. I had just turned eighteen, so they told me either I got my shit together, or they were going to let me go - one more mishap and I was out of the house.
Honestly, I’ve been wanting to move out and get away from my parents for a while anyways. My “unruly” and rebellious acts in high school was a result of their constant bickering and attempts at controlling every aspect of my life. I’ve become more and more annoyed with them as time passed.
After our talk I became determined to stay out of trouble. I still needed somewhere to stay before leaving, and I didn’t want to get thrown out before I found a way to support myself. I was motivated to turn my life around. But I had to start somewhere, and it was in an industry I knew I’d hate working in.
Fast food.
I found a position at a burger joint. After a few weeks of faithfully punching the clock after school, and fulfilling my duty as a cashier, I really was off to a good start. That was until I decided I needed a car. Although my job was only a few blocks away, I thought I would need some reliable transportation for myself in the future.
Obviously I had no money to purchase a new car, so I planned on buying a used one. One day after school I made a trip to the nearest dealership and searched for a used vehicle with a low price. I wanted to get the car as soon as possible, but I had no credit and I couldn’t pay the full price up front. I searched for other solutions.
An old acquaintance told me about a guy called Bucky-Mac. He told me this guy would loan me the money for the car no matter what my credit was like. From what I've heard, Bucky-Mac was primarily a drug dealer, but he also lent money to desperate people on the side.
Apparently he's been around for years, so I found it odd that I've never heard of this guy before. The fact that this guy was pretty much a loan shark did very little to deter me at the time. My sudden enthusiasm and hope that came with finally wanting to get my life together and taking my future seriously kind of clouded my judgment.
I went to the guy that my old friend had informed me of. Bucky-Mac spent a lot of time in a spot located on the other side of town. It was in a wooded area, at the end of a long dirt road deep into a labyrinth of trees. I rode my bike over there that day, so it took me about ten minutes to travel down the dirt road and reach the small wooden house with boarded up windows.
There were four black trucks parked on the property, with a few men hanging out and standing here and there. One guy smoking a cigarette turned and spotted me coming his way. He stopped in the middle of taking another swig and stared at me as I came closer. The other guys nearby spotted me soon after. I rode closer to the guy with the cigarette and hopped off my bike. All the eyes glued on me made me feel uneasy, so I was slow about speaking. After seconds of awkward silence the cigarette smoking guy says,
“Who are you?”
The curious men that surrounded him looked as if they also wanted to know.
“I-I’m Jake. I’m here to talk to Bucky-Mac,” I said.
He nodded his head in approval before flicking his still lit cigarette away. Then he gestured for me to follow him. I was led into the nearly dilapidated house, as many of the other guys had their gaze locked on me as I entered.
The place was mostly dark inside. But there were a few dimly lit areas, many of which were occupied with boxes and blocks of a suspicious substance heavily wrapped in tape. There was a guy inside hauling many of the blocks into the boxes as he taped them up. The house also reeked of marijuana. The scent was so strong I was surprised it didn’t hit me while I was outside.
We made a turn down a hall which had a closed door at the end. The guy in front of me knocked twice when we reached it. The door swung open in seconds, revealing a middle aged man standing in the doorway. He was smiling. He glanced at me quickly then laid eyes back on the guy in front of me.
“Who is this?” he asked.
The guy in front me shrugged his shoulders.
The middle aged man’s smile grew wider. He had one gold tooth. His hair was slicked back, and it shined in the sunlight beaming in through the window behind him.
“How’s it going?” He said, still smiling.
“I’m fine, man. You?” I replied.
Although I felt a little uneasy, I tried to present myself as confident and just as friendly as this guy appeared to be so far.
“Why don’t you come into my office?” He said, stepping back and giving way for me and the other guy to enter.
We walked in then the middle aged man closed the door behind us. There were two chairs sitting in front of a decorative desk, which had a revolver and a half consumed glass of liquor near it. I took a seat in one of the chairs, as the man came and sat behind his desk. The other guy stood by the door.
“So, what’s up? "
“You are Bucky-Mac, right?” I asked.
He picked up the glass of liquor and gulped down what remained before saying,
“Of course, mate! All day everyday.”
I looked behind me and saw the guy by the door grinning. Then I spun back around only to see Bucky-Mac still smiling.
I sighed.
“I need to borrow some cash,” I said.
From there I explained my situation. I told him that I just turned eighteen and was about to graduate high school in a few months. I informed him of my bumpy years of high school, why I wanted to turn my life around after graduating, and how the money would allow me to buy a car, which would be convenient during the job hunting process.
“Hmm, I see,” Bucky-Mac mumbled, staring at his desk, “You seem to be a man of good intent. You made some mistakes, and now you wanna do better. I can respect that.”
He pulled a bottle of booze from behind his desk and started to refill the glass in front of him.
“You know, most people would find this hard to believe. But sometimes I wish I did the same when I was your age,” Bucky-Mac continued, “If I had thought the same as you earlier on, I’d have a much more stable life right now.”
I heard the guy by the door chuckle, as if he disagreed with Bucky-Mac’s statement.
“Thanks, man,” I said.
He offered me a drink, but I kindly turned it down.
“No worries, pal. You have my support,” Bucky-Mac assured, “So how much we lookin’ at?”
The second I left Bucky-Mac’s spot I headed straight for the dealership and purchased the car I’ve had my eye on. Then on the following day I pulled up to school in it. Some of the kids standing in the crowd in front of the school building noticed me as soon as I pulled into the parking lot. A few of them were my friends, and I often walked to school with them everyday.
They were surprised to see me suddenly pull up to school driving a car, and no longer walking with them. I must say, it felt good to drive around in a vehicle that I could say was mine. Although it was only a cheap used one, it was still my first car.
Among some of the kids in the crowd was a girl. She was standing in an area alone by the front doors. She was really tall, towering over most of the boys that stood in a group not too far away from her. Her eyes were locked on me as I drove by.
Abatha is her name. I’ve known her since first grade. No, we weren’t quite friends. If anything we were the opposite. Abatha has been a total bitch to me ever since the first day we met as small children.
It all started in second grade. Abatha snatched a toy from me. Then she proceeded to push me down and go crying to the teacher, saying I was the one that took the toy from her. The teacher believed her, and I was put in time out. I remember seven year old Abatha teasing me for the rest of the day after that.
This small childish incident led to non-stop feuding between us, year after year, well into our high school years. Most of it was initiated by her.
Often Abatha would taunt and harass me every chance she got. It became worse at the beginning of high school when my years of delinquency began. She had many field days laughing and making fun of me the second she found out I’d gotten into some trouble.
Her harassment was never anything more than verbal. Abatha never physically assaulted me, or displayed a desire to do so. I found this odd, as she very well could've, and inflicted some damage due to her large size. She’s always been a larger girl. Even when we were younger she had always been taller than me. By the time junior year came around she was 6’4.
As I pulled into a parking spot I saw Abatha grin before turning and entering the school building.
Two hundred fifty dollar payments a week. That was the deal. I told Bucky-Mac about my job as a cashier and he was willing to work with me. I expected close to half of my check to be gone every time I got paid for the next few months, but it was for a good cause.
I returned to Bucky-Mac’s spot one afternoon after leaving work, to pay him his share. The first week of paying was a piece of cake. Easy in, easy out. But it was when I went back the following week I realized I may have made a grave mistake.
He wanted double of what was paid the previous week. Five hundred dollars.
When he told me that, my stomach dropped. During our negotiation he specifically said two hundred fifty dollars per week. I was confused as to why he was changing the terms and conditions.
“I forgot to mention a little something called…interest,” Bucky-Mac explained, “Look at it this way. You’re helping me, help you.” Bucky-Mac said.
That friendly smile he once had when I first met him had turned into something else.
I already knew there would be some interest involved, because otherwise he wouldn’t make any profit lending money. But I didn’t expect it to be that much. Fortunately I was able to make the payment, as I could work more hours than most high schoolers who were restricted by child labor laws. But I barely had any money left afterwards.
When I went back the third week he wanted a thousand dollars.
One thousand dollars.
I mean, there was just no way he could expect me to pull that kind of cash on the spot. Especially after I told him about my low paying occupation.
I told him I couldn’t pay him that week. Then that’s when the shit hit the fan, and the guy beneath that friendly façade came to surface. Bucky-Mac’s smile faded completely, then he abruptly gained an expression of pure rage.
“We had a deal,” he said, standing up out of his seat.
That same guy from before was standing by the door, but the second Bucky-Mac stood up out of his seat, he moved in closer to me.
With my heart now racing, I mumble, “You didn’t say anything about interest rates this high -”
“We had a deal!” Bucky-Mac shouted.
“Dude, I get that. But w-we agreed to something totally different!” I said, now starting to get even more nervous.
I glanced behind me once more and saw that the other guy was almost leaning right up on me, still glaring. At this point I wanted to just run out of the room.
As Bucky-Mac walked from behind his desk the guy behind me wrapped his arm around my neck, locking me in a tight choke hold. I struggled to break free but the guy was too strong.
“What the fuck is thi - “ I started.
Before I could finish my sentence, Bucky-Mac came and punched me in the stomach. I grunted in pain then coughed multiple times. Then he kneeled down to look me right in the eye, as the guy behind me still had a hold on me.
“Now I’m gonna tell you this, Jake. I don’t like being ripped off,” Bucky-Mac said.
I felt the guy's arm slightly constrict around my neck tighter.
Bucky-Mac searched my pockets then pulled out all the cash I was carrying, which wasn’t very much.
“You’re short on payment,” he continued, “From now on, I want full payments every single week, starting next week. By then, I expect two thousand dollars sitting on my desk….no excuses. Or we’re gonna have some serious problems, Jake.”
Bucky-Mac delivered a few more punches to my gut before the guy behind me finally released me, letting me fall to the floor as I held my stomach.
“You can leave my office now,” Bucky-Mac mumbled, drawing a cigar from the inside of his suit.
After that incident I hadn’t returned to Bucky-Mac’s spot for two whole weeks. Bucky-Mac called my phone constantly during that time. I ignored. Every time my phone rang and I saw his number my heart would instantly leap. I didn’t know what I was going to do. But I had to think of something quick.
In the meantime, everyone at school was already excited about prom. I wasn’t. I had gotten myself caught up in some debt. Prom was the last thing I cared about.
During the next few weeks that’s all everyone at school discussed. My parents even brought it up to me, expressing how they hoped I planned on going to the last prom of high school. At first I disregarded their suggestion and didn’t plan on going. I had no one to take. I was pretty sure anyone I asked would’ve turned me down anyways. But to my surprise, someone asked me to prom instead.
A girl named Alexis. This was odd because I hadn’t interacted with her much over the years, and I barely knew her. But she told me she had no one to take to prom and she’s been checking me out for some time. So reluctantly, I agreed to go to prom with her. Afterwards, we spent some time hanging out and dating off and on. Some mornings I’d even pick her up and give her rides to school in my car.
One morning Abatha caught Alexis and I getting out of my car and heading to the school building. Abatha was standing alone once again. This time she was scrolling away on her phone. She spotted us out in the parking lot, then waited for us to approach her. Another mischievous grin plastered her face.
“Looks like the troublemaker caught himself another fish,” Abatha said as we passed by.
When I didn’t reply, Abatha stepped out in front of us and blocked our way.
I sighed.
“Abatha, not today”.
I had to look up to her as I spoke.
“I don’t wanna get into it with you right now. Please move,” I continued.
I took Alexis by the hand and tried to move around her but she just blocked me again.
Abatha did this often. I’ve had many girlfriends throughout high school. Every time Abatha saw me with a new girl she’d come and embarrass me in front of my date.
Every time.
I sighed again. Abatha chuckled.
“What’s wrong, Jakey boy?...still feelin’ butterflies?” Abatha taunted.
She glanced at Alexis.
“Let me ask you something,” Abatha continued, stepping closer to Alexis, “Does he often get…jittery, when you’re alone?”
“I don’t think that’s any of your busine - “ Alexis started.
“Does he scream when you see him with his pants down?” Abatha interrupted, “Only asking because he did it before. When I pulled his pants down back in sixth grade…..wait, have you seen him with his pants down yet?”
Agitated, Alexis took me by the hand and made her way around Abatha, pulling me along with her. As we trotted along, I glanced back and saw Abatha frowning. I smirked at her as we walked further away. Abatha rolled her eyes in frustration before turning around and going in the opposite direction.
I was just getting off work on one Saturday night, as my shift had just ended. My manager was counting the till and I just cleaned the last table in the restaurant. While I waited by the door for the manager to lock up for the night, I saw a black truck pull into the parking lot outside. The truck parked right beside my car. My guess was a last minute customer. Evidently my manager thought the same because he told me to tell whoever was in the truck that we were closed. When they came to the door, that is. But no one ever did get out of the truck. About ten minutes had passed by and they were still sitting there letting the engine run.
My manager and I stepped outside after he had set the alarm and finished the till. Then the both of us went our separate ways in the parking lot, after the manager had locked the restaurant doors.
When I got to my car I tried to sneak a peek into the truck that was parked beside me but the windows were tinted very dark.
Go figure.
I heard the manager start the engine on his car and pull out of the parking lot. That’s when a door on the mysterious black truck suddenly shot open. A large man hopped out of the back seat and grabbed me from behind, hauling me into the truck afterwards.
As soon as the large man threw me into the back seat, I was reminded that I had told Bucky-Mac where I worked when we first met. I told him part of my schedule, and gave some specifics on times. I had also informed him of some other things I couldn’t recall at the moment. I know I may have told him a little too much but the guy seemed so friendly at first I thought I could trust him.
The guy that hauled me in pushed me further across the seat, before getting back in himself and closing the door. Someone else in the truck flipped on a light. Then I could clearly see Bucky-Mac sitting right beside me. He didn’t look happy.
“Sup, Jake?” He said.
He stared at me with cold and menacing eyes.
There were two guys in the front. They were looking back at me, holding expressions similar to Bucky-Mac’s.
“You’ve missed some payments, and it better be for good reason. Now, I hope you have cash to cover these couple weeks you’ve decided to skedaddle,” Bucky-Mac said.
He continued to glare at me, waiting for a response.
“I-I’ve been trying to get the money. What do you think I’m at this restaurant for?” I stammered.
He snickered then covered his face with his hand.
“Now, that’s a good one!.....But it’s still unacceptable. You haven’t been paying, and you’ve been ignoring my calls,” he snarled.
He elbowed me in the face, striking me right in my nose. My nose began to gush blood.
One of the guys up front lit a cigarette, then that’s when Bucky-Mac and the large guy sitting on my other side started to viciously beat me. They kicked my ass in that back seat for minutes, then the large guy opened the door again before shoving me outside on the ground.
The black truck backed up and took off, leaving me behind in the moonlit parking lot.
My entire body was aching like hell, and one of my eyes throbbed non-stop. I touched my bottom lip. It was swollen, and felt slightly enlarged. I could barely stand up straight heading to my car, as the pain had caused my body to beg for rest.
As I opened my car door, I heard something from a distance. A strange sound. Like a howl. It was echoing out into the night, and it went on for seconds. I turned in all directions making several attempts at finding the source.
I found nothing.
I even glanced at the sky. There was nothing there but the half moon.
I had dug myself deeper into the debt hole by not visiting Bucky-Mac for those two weeks. He increased my debt even more, and accounted for the times I didn’t show up. As expected, he doubled the amount for each week. This meant I owed him a total of eight thousand dollars as of the night in the parking lot.
After that I made sure I stopped by Bucky-Mac’s spot and paid him as much as I could for the following few weeks after, even though it was nowhere near enough. As a result of the low payments, I received more beatings everytime I went. But I had to keep going and pay him what I could, otherwise he’d do something worse if I didn’t show up at all.
But what was I kidding. I was never going to pay off this debt. At this point I realized that’s exactly how Bucky-Mac wanted things. He wanted a constant flow of cash that never ended. Even if I showed up to his office one day and paid what I owed in full, he’d just double the debt and kick my ass again.
The beatings were getting unbearable. I couldn’t take it anymore. So I felt I had to skip out on him for a couple more weeks as a way to catch a break from getting my ass kicked. Again I ignored his calls when he hit up my cell phone. After that I just anticipated the black truck waiting for me outside of my job.
Bucky-Mac didn’t show up at my job anymore. He came to my school instead. After the bell rang and the school day came to an end, fear showered me when I walked outside and saw the black truck parked across the street.
I planned on giving Alexis a ride home that day, so she was by my side as I tried to ease my way to my car. Unfortunately I was spotted as I crawled into the driver’s seat. The backdoor on the black truck swung open, then that same large guy from before came trotting across the street. When the guy approached my car, he swung my door back open then gently pulled me out of the driver’s seat.
“Jake, where are you going?” Alexis said, “Who is this?”
The guy held his arm on my shoulder as he walked me across the street to the black truck. He faked a smile and pretended to be an acquaintance to avoid drawing the attention of the nearby students around us. We got to the truck then the guy shoved me into the back seat once again.
I met Bucky-Mac with an unsettled gaze the second I was thrown in. I could hear Alexis constantly shouting my name outside.
“I thought I wouldn’t have to tell you again,” Bucky-Mac mumbled, “But it looks like you’re a pretty terrible listener!”
With that, the guy up front started to slowly drive away from the school. I glanced out the window and saw Alexis jogging on the sidewalk to keep up with us. The truck made a stop after a block of cruising. They parked near a curb closeby.
Another beating was initiated, and I can tell you this was the worst one yet. They gave me double the amount of blows to my body. I received so many strikes to the face I was surprised I could see at all when it was over.
Alexis peeped through the window with her hands cupped around her eyes, yelling for them to stop.
“Stop it, you’re gonna hurt him!” she cried.
They kept going, punching and elbowing me for minutes. I could feel blood elevating my throat.
Bucky-Mac drew a knife and held it to my pupil.
“Listen here you little shit. The next time you screw me over, not only are we gonna beat you twice as worse and twice as longer, but I’m gonna take my blade…and pluck one of your eyes,” He threatened.
He brought the blade even closer to my eye. Almost to the point where I could almost feel the tip touching my eyeball.
“You can’t afford to test me again, Jake.”
I was shoved out of the truck once more, only to be meant with Alexis crying on the sidewalk. The panic on her face grew more intense when she saw my nose dripping with blood.
“Jake, what’s going on?” she sobbed.
I didn’t answer.
Someone else was walking towards us on the sidewalk. It was Abatha. She saw Alexis crying, then glanced at me. As soon as she saw my battered face there was an expression of concern.
Abatha wasn’t smiling.
Alexis broke up with me the next day. She got spooked by the incident and decided she didn’t want much to do with me anymore. Our plans to go to prom together were also canceled. The incident had given Alexis the wrong impression - that I was still engaging in pathological behavior. She complained of not being able to be around me anymore, saying,
“So these are the kind of people you deal with?!...If that’s the case, then I’m afraid we’re not gonna work.”
She walked away then barely spoke to me anymore after that. Then of course Abatha just had to be nearby to witness and overhear everything. Abatha was already holding her usual grin when I glanced at her.
“Looks like you messed up again, Jakey boy!” She teased, “Your fish unhooked itself and swam away?”
I glared at her angrily, then brushed past her to enter the school building.
It was pretty disappointing for our plans to be canceled. But hell, my whole ideal ending for my senior year had been canceled as far as I knew. Just when I was starting to grow more enthusiastic about senior prom all hope was taken away. Prom was just a month and a half away and I no longer had a date to take. To make matters worse, Alexis had already found another prom date within days after splitting up with me.
Abatha wouldn’t shut up about that. She rubbed it in face for days.
“Well that was quick. We’ll see how fast you can find another date…if at all,” she said before trailing away, giggling.
I lifted a middle finger at her as she walked.
At this point in time I no longer cared about the car. I wished I could return it and take back everything. I just wanted out of this debt with Bucky-Mac, and for senior year to just end already. I was giving up on all hopes for my plans for the future. As a matter of fact, after being too afraid to face Bucky-Mac once again and skipping out on meeting him for another three weeks, I decided that I’d contact the police and inform them of the situation I’d gotten myself in soon. Then let my parents know what was going on.
I was sure my parents would definitely kick me out after finding out I made a deal with a loan shark. But I didn’t care. Keeping a secret wasn’t worth my life. Or in this case - my eye.
Unfortunately I made the fatal mistake of not acting on those thoughts soon enough, as I ended another night shift at work with the black truck waiting for me out in the parking lot. My heart leaped instantly as I felt my body run cold. I wanted badly to just tell my manager everything and beg him to call the police for me. But instead all he did was activate the security system and lock the doors as usual. Then he pulled out of the parking lot, leaving me to endure what was to come.
The black truck pulled out of its parking spot and made its way over to me. That same large guy hopped out and started to haul me into the truck.
“Get his ass in here!!” I heard Bucky-Mac hiss.
We all heard something. Then the large guy holding me paused.
It was the same howling sound I heard before. Again it echoed out into the night, and got louder the longer it went on.
“What the hell is that?” The large guy said.
“Who gives a shit?!! Get him in!” Bucky-Mac demanded.
The large guy did just that.
This time instead of giving me the usual beating quickie, they pulled off as soon as I was hauled into the truck and drove me back to Bucky-Mac’s spot. The truck halted at a stop upon arriving at the small raggedy house.
This was my first time at the spot during the night, and it looked a bit different. There was no kind of artificial light in this wooded area so it was a lot darker than usual. But the light from the full moon above provided enough to see around the dark pit that surrounded us.
The men shoved me out of the truck and started their beating ritual. The other two men joined in this time, punching and kicking me, barely giving me a chance to breathe. In the middle of all this was the sound of the howling again.
The large guy was the only one to acknowledge it. He paused, but Bucky-Mac and the other two continued to beat me.
After minutes of receiving many more blows, they all stopped. The large guy positioned my body to lean against the back tire of the truck. Then Bucky-Mac drew his pocket knife and kneeled down to face me.
I moaned and groaned from the painful sensations moving throughout my body.
"I tried," Bucky-Mac started, "I've really tried to work with you. But it's obvious you're a fraud."
He had some nerve. The loan shark, calling me a fraud.
"I think you get a kick out of not giving me what I want…what I deserve.”
He opened the blade on the knife and brought the point to my eye.
“Now I’m gonna take something away you desperately want….and don’t deserve,” he continued.
I swore I could feel the tip of the blade slightly drive into my sclera. Before it could go any deeper, we all heard that howl for the third time that night. Except it sounded very close this time. So close no one could ignore it. Not even Bucky-Mac. He lowered the knife then glanced behind him, as that’s where it seemed the howling came from.
There was nothing there but a patch of darkness resting between the trees.
“What the - ?” Bucky-mac whispered.
As we all stared at the patch of darkness, two glowing dots emerged in front of our eyes.
Two yellow glowing dots.
Behind the yellow dots came another howl, along with some deep and beastly growls.
The dots started to come closer, then continued until whatever was hiding in the shadows came out into view, and was exposed beneath the moonlight.
The sight of the creature we were looking at had caught us all off guard. Bucky-Mac dropped the knife then all five of us began backing away.
In front of us was some kind of tall and fury beast. The creature stood upright just like a human, and had to be no less than seven feet tall. Its muscles were so defined they practically rippled through its black and shiny coat of fur. Turns out the yellow dots were the creature’s eyes. Those beady eyes were locked on us, as we backed away even further.
The creature opened its long snout full of pointed teeth, dripping with saliva, and let out a deafening, monstrous sound.
"Bucky, what the hell is going on?!" One of the other guys shouted.
"H-how the fuck should I know?" Bucky-Mac yelled.
I could hear the fear and concern in their voices.
The creature let out several smaller growls, then suddenly began sprinting towards us on all fours. Bucky-Mac and his guys drew pistols and began firing multiple shots at the hairy beast.
I turned to run but instantly tripped and fell on my stomach. The sharp pain in my stomach left me stagnant for seconds.
Bullets struck the creature in several areas on its muscular body. The gunfire seemed to do little to no damage, but it was enough to keep the creature temporarily distant. The beast backed off then started to crawl up the walls of Bucky-Mac’s small drug house. The men continued to fire at the creature until it reached the roof.
“Come on, kill this fuckin’ thing!” Bucky-Mac shouted, firing away with his revolver.
With many bullets still striking its body, the creature took a huge leap off the building. It jumped so high I could see the full moon behind it’s body as it accelerated through the air - towards us. It landed right on top of the guy who drove the truck, crushing his puny human body and taking a huge bite out of his head afterwards. Blood sprayed from the exposed brains in his skull, dousing his partner in the face nearby and preventing him from seeing where he was shooting.
The guy screamed and tried to flee the area. He could barely turn around before the creature took one of its paws and ran its razor sharp claws across his face, slicing one of his eyes in the process and leaving three gruesome gashes behind.
Shocked, Bucky-Mac dropped his gun and watched the creature lift his disfigured partner off the ground and pull one his arms clean off his body. The guy screamed in agony as his stump cascaded with blood and fell to the ground like a waterfall. He wiggled and twitched in pain, making several feeble attempts at breaking free of the creature’s grasp.
Bucky-Mac turned and started to flee. The big guy followed behind him, dashing right past me, and leaving me alone with the beast.
The creature turned and started to stare at me with those yellow eyes, still holding Bucky-Mac’s mangled partner in its hand. The fear and terror left me paralyzed. I couldn’t move.
I started to feel a little light headed, and keeping my eyes open became difficult.
The last thing I remembered before I passed out, was those glowing eyes and those sharp canines dripping with crimson.
When I woke up I couldn’t tell how much time had passed. I stood up and scanned the area, only to see the truck still beside me. The mangled bodies of the driver and passenger of the truck were laid out not too far away. But Bucky-Mac and the large guy were nowhere to be found.
The creature had disappeared too.
I wasted no time. Right away I started to run, trying to make my way out of that neck of the woods. While darting through the trees, I came across two more bodies, one slumped on its side and the other on its back.
I ran to one of the bodies and rolled it over using my foot. I almost screamed when I saw the face. It was Bucky-Mac, and he was unrecognizable. His face had been completely torn away, leaving nothing behind but his exposed and bleeding face muscles. His mouth was slightly open. Opened wide enough for me to see his one gold tooth.
The large guy’s torso had been torn open, his body sprawled out, eyes staring out into nothing but the darkness that surrounded him. Dried blood was caked all over his face and neck.
I heard some growls.
This caused me to start running again. I got a glimpse of a pair of yellow eyes hiding in the middle of some trees as I passed by. I ran faster. Then I heard multiple footsteps behind me.
It was following me.
I made it out of the woods and reached a street light out on the road, where I sat down on the curb and took some time to catch my breath. I didn’t hear the footsteps anymore so I assumed I was safe. I also glanced behind me again and saw nothing pursuing me.
That thing had all the time in the world to maul me to bits. It could’ve easily caught me while I was running…so why didn’t it?
For some reason I still felt a bit light headed. I rested my head on my hand. But while doing so I felt a rough substance on my forehead. I brought my finger to my face to see what I had touched. Something blue and dry.
Lipstick.
Someone kissed me.
My parents wondered where I was and wanted to know why I was getting home so late that night. I lied and said I went to a party after work. They were a bit upset that I didn't call and let them know what was going on. I was fine with that. I was just glad to be alive, and for the first time since forever I was happy to see them.
It was that night I realized I would be just fine staying with my parents for a while longer. I also decided that I had no problem working at the burger joint until I figured out what I really wanted out of life, and college just may be a possibility in the future.
I continued to faithfully show up to work and complete my shifts, and wait patiently for my senior year to come to an end.
Meanwhile, the authorities found Bucky-Mac and his men. Then they raided his drug house. No one could identify the cause of their deaths, or tell whether another animal or human was responsible. The story was all over the news, and it had people in town shook. Everyone kept talking about the gruesome killings until the end of the school year. Who or what might have done it was always up for debate.
To this day, no one knows that I was there to see it all. I always got uneasy overhearing someone at school talk about it.
Two weeks before prom I opened my locker to see a pink envelope lying on top of my books. I picked it up and saw Abatha's name written across the front. While tearing open the envelope I sighed and rolled my eyes, expecting to see something crude and belligerent.
There was a folded letter inside, and upon opening it my eyes went wide. My heart started racing, and I was shocked to my core. At the very top of the page was an imprint of lips with…
Blue lipstick.
Below that was a lengthy letter from Abatha, explaining how she really felt about me. How she's felt for a long time. In the last paragraph was something else that left me perplexed.
She was asking me out, and she wanted to be my girlfriend.
She..she also wanted to take me to prom.
submitted by KiddKnyghtMarez to nosleep [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 15:48 Knaifu69 Something stupid me and my friend did.

So i remember this one time me and my friend were just chillin, doin our thing during recess when all of a sudden 4 kids came back from lunch. These guys signed out from lunch AND THEY BROUGHT BACK A FUCKING TREE. It was a christmas tree, around maybee like uhhhh 2m and 10cm? i don't remember exactly but it was way taller than me. So me and my friend decided to do something stupid. Afterschool we went to where the tree was and PICKED IT UP. We decided to carry it back home. He carried the tip which had a pink string, and i carried the trunk which was very sappy. It was very heavy and we took a few breaks. When we finally got it to my house, i asked "So now where do we put it?" so he RAN OFF. I laughed and then decided to tie the pink string to the tree planted outside my house (every house had one). So i excitedly told my parents and they told me we could not have it. See, the wind could blow over and go on the road, hitting a car and we could be fined. So i had to singlehandedly DRAG IT BACK ALL THE WAY. I held the trunk and dragged the tree all the way back. I dragged the tree all the way from my house, to the school, holding the trunk. I decided to keep the pink string as a memory and i have it to this day.
submitted by Knaifu69 to stories [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 15:47 _ThatswhatXisaid_ That does seem to be a problem

That does seem to be a problem submitted by _ThatswhatXisaid_ to doodoofard [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 15:28 Eothas_Foot Tiny Tina's Wonderlands is like running full speed on a hamster wheel going nowhere.

I really want to like this game. It has charm in spades, the framing device of 'you are inside a DnD game' is actually brilliant for video games, and the jokes are so clever that I have to write them down sometimes. But the gameplay loop is where we get into the biggest problems.
So ultimately the problem for me is that lack of progression. How Long to Beat lists a rushed, main quest only playthrough at 8 hours. While a leisurely 'main story+extras' is 50 hours. I think that shows perfectly how much side content there is.
submitted by Eothas_Foot to patientgamers [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 15:17 TessaBissolli Rederina? Red is RR? Third man? How the ending makes an already stupid long series even more pointless, especially after Nachalo AKA "The Dumpster Fire" TM. Part 2 The Bones Are The stone Upon Which The Impostor Is Built.

In part 1, we examine some of the dialogue that happens in the first four seasons. By the time we get to season 3, we have in fact eliminated any theories in which Red is not one of Liz's parents, because Red admits to Kirk Liz is indeed his daughter, and not having raised her, it eliminates this is a adoptive or step parent situation, a parental without necessarily meaning biological connection. Red is one of Liz's parents, either Katarina or Raymond Reddington. The same exact spot we continue to spin in season 8, when Townsend tells us as much. He can replicate for Red the effect of losing his family by killing Liz in front of him.
You can read an extended analysis of the link of the Hobson's choice, the suicide speech and Rederina here.
We will examine seasons 5 and leave seasons 6, 7 and 8 for a third part because season 5 is pivotal and the analysis is a long one.
Season 5: Them Damn Bones!
The bones are the cornerstone of everything that follows, for is the foundation that Red is not the Reddington from before 1990 when he disappeared. Remember that we have never been shown a dead Reddington, or even a fresh dug grave. Nachalo gets us to a wounded Reddington in the car, nothing further. It is said by Katarina and Ilya, but we have no visual confirmation.
Red saying he had a prior identity does not solve much, per se, because one thing we know is that the man known to the US Navy as Raymond Reddington, does not seem to exist under that name until the Naval Academy.
Remember that Liz, obsessed with blood relatives, and with the resources of the FBI to find all sorts of records (birth, death, marriages, college, voting, taxes, military records, financial, name change, etc.) is surprised when she thinks Ressler found her paternal grandfather. It seems both our "new" Reddington and the "old" Reddington had a prior identity.
We will spend some time in the bones, for they are pivotal. This season sets up everything that follows.
Let us begin by identifying key moments:
  1. Kate dig the bones, tells Red about it, gets Tom to pick them up, and does not add any identification clue to them. Attaches a tag so they are directed to Liz.
  2. Tom picks up the bones and decides to find out the identity before giving them to her, getting Nik to help. Nik gets Pete who extracts DNA from a tooth and breaks into CODIS using Liz's id. The bones return an ID, and Garvey is notified of the match.
  3. Garvey gets the bones, gets Tom, Pete and Lena, and eventually kills Tom via his goons and leaves Liz in a coma.
  4. Red get the bones, but not before Liz manages to find Jennifer by following Garvey. Garvey died, shot by Liz and Dembe.
  5. Garvey had given the bones to Jennifer and involves someone who had a grudge with Reddington for an issue in 1989, Sutton Ross. (For this part, think about the logic of it, if the man Ross had the issue with has been dead long enough to be a bag of bones).
  6. Jennifer, aided by Ross, shows Liz the bones in a charade. (For this one please remember that Jennifer knew where Liz lived, and yet, that is how she chose to show Liz. As for entrapping Red, Liz would have happily done so, without the theatrics.)
Let us begin by point # 5, which comes in 5.22, because it goes to the crux of the matter. The involvement of Sutton Ross by Ian Garvey. Let us think about this matter carefully:
Ross has a grudge with Reddington, because he believes that in 1989 Reddington had tricked him into stealing bad plans for the Chinese. Garvey helped him faked his death.
Garvey knows the identification of the bones, and by then, so would Ross. Why would Garvey involve Ross to get his revenge, if both men KNOW that the man who tricked Ross has been dead for a very long time?
Raymond Reddington was an officer with the US Navy Counterintelligence, not a traveling vacuum salesman, so the idea that anyone would supplant him without anyone noticing is poppycock.
Therefore, the Reddington who Ross blames for his mishap is the same Reddington who disappeared a year later, in 1990, the so-called, original or real Raymond Reddington.
In the '80s, when a company or a country wanted to steal R&D rather than develop it, Ross and his team stole it for them.
Didn't he steal R&D on a stealth fighter for China?
A defective stealth fighter called the Grayscape Seventeen. The Navy knew Ross was working for China, so they made sure he stole plans for a plane that couldn't fly, and when it crashed, China blamed Ross, turned him over to the feds, who issued an arrest warrant, and Ross disappeared.
"Let's start with this DNA report. For 30 years, I've wanted to be in the same room as Raymond Reddington, the bastard who tricked me into selling the Chinese a dodo bird when they were looking for an eagle. And here we are. So, the DNA report tell me what it means. ... The only guarantee you have is that, if you don't tell me, she will die. Of course, perhaps you don't care about that. Perhaps her life isn't worth your revealing your precious secret for. After all, what is she to you, really? "
Let us re-write this if Ross knows for certain Red is someone other than the man who arrange the Grayscape 17 charade:
Let's start with this DNA report. For 30 years, I've wanted to be in the same room as Raymond Reddington, the bastard who tricked me into selling the Chinese a dodo bird when they were looking for an eagle. And here we are, it turns out he has been dead for a very long time, which I found out when I got the report, and means I will never get any revenge on the perp, and you are an idiot for taking the name of a traitor. So tell me what the report means be cause I am curious to know how Raymond Reddington died?
The only guarantee you have is that, if you don't tell me, she will die. Of course, perhaps you don't care about that. Perhaps her life isn't worth your revealing your precious secret for. After all, what is she to you, really? Because she is not your daughter, because you are not Raymond Reddington, who Jennifer told me was Liz's father.
Was Sutton Ross licking hallucinogenic toads? What possible good may it do to him, other than getting him killed to learn whatever about the report? It supposedly is self explanatory: Reddington is dead and this man is someone else. But clearly, this makes no sense. The fact Sutton was involved is because he too had a grudge against Reddington, like Jennifer and Garvey had.
Clearly this incident dates to the 1980, Ross's 30 years places it in 1989.
Is there something else confirming that Garvey does indeed believe the bones are not of Raymond Reddington? Yes. When Garvey finally learns what is the connection between Red and Liz, this is what he says:
"Reddington's (RED) her father.... Now I get it. Reddington (RED) and your husband (TOM), how they knew each other. Reddington (RED) didn't know you (LIZ) through him (TOM). He knew him (TOM) through you (LIZ)."
Garvey is saying the man who is alive, and the father of Liz and Jennifer is one and the same, not the bones in the bag. That is why he wants the whole truth, because if the secret is that Reddington is an imposter, what else would Garvey want to know?
Let us write it if we believe Red is an impostor and not the same man who fathered Liz:
Reddington's (DEAD MAN IN BAG) her father.... Now I get it. Reddington (DEAD MAN IN BAG) and your husband, how they knew each other. Reddington (DEAD MAN IN BAG) didn't know you through him. He knew him through you.
Consider too what Dembe tells Red:
"Ross wants blood. He (ROSS) thinks you (RED) ruined his life."
"But he (ROSS) thinks you (RED) did, and because of that, he wants to world to know what's inside the duffel. (A SECRET RED DOES NOT WANT OUT)
It does not matter what Red did or did not, if he gave Ross the plans, or facilitated the exchange, or if he was not responsible at all. What matters is what Dembe knows (who is the bag's identity), and what Ross knows (who is in the bag) and wants, which is revenge for the charade on the person he holds responsible, who is the man calling himself Reddington in 1989.
Those lines make no sense whatsoever, for anything other than the bones would not be the original or real Reddington.
Ross wants blood. He thinks you (RED) ruined his life. BUT IF Ross has the bones then Ross knows Red is not the man who tricked him, or sold him, or gave him those blueprints.
But he thinks you (RED) did, and because of that, he wants to world to know what's inside the duffel. (The bones of the man who DID set him up, or at least who Ross thinks did, which begs the question, why on earth would he then think Red ruined his life. At most, he is an idiot for taking that name.

Let us move now to point #3, which involves what Garvey says about the bones to Tom and what Red himself discusses with Dembe and Smokey about them, namely, the value of the bones:
"You know, all this time I've given you to think has prompted me to do some thinking of my own. And, uh I got to tell you, I'm stumped. When you consider all the people on the planet who would be interested in the contents of that case and you multiply that number by an even greater number of unspeakable things those people would do to get it, how the hell could it end up in the hands of a little pissant like you?"
and:
RED: We came all this way to find the duffel has been handed from one enemy of mine to another.
DEMBE: And yet, neither chose to make its contents public.
SMOKEY: If what you're looking for is as valuable as you say, why why why why didn't they put it up for auction?
RED: I have no idea.
Exactly what would be lost to Red if the world knew he is NOT Raymond Reddington, but an impostor who much like Gregory Devry, took the name for reasons unknown?
Red's value, his empire, is based on his contacts, decades of being the concierge of crime, of brokering deals, finding information. Who he was is irrelevant. And remember that, for the Rederina lens, knowing he is not Reddington does not equate to knowing he is Katarina. The name Reddington had no intrinsic value, for all Reddington was in 1990 when he disappeared, and then in 1991 was a two bit traitor.
For all Nachalo was trying to sell us different goods, Nachalo's Raymond Reddington had not much value per se. He was an imbecile incapable of suspecting a beautiful Russian woman, one who could move freely in the West without being followed by a cadre of KGB agents so she will not defect, was not a KGB agent herself.
Then let us move to the matter of the identification. Red is certain that whoever has them, will come to him, will be able to identify them, and once done, there is no more questions to be had:
GARVEY: Let's start with the truth.
RED: You have the bones. You already know the truth.
GARVEY: A truth. I want the whole truth.
In season 3 we had learned that Reddington's DNA was not in any DNA identification database.
Who is this guy? - He claims he's Reddington?
Yes, and we can't disprove it with DNA because there's nothing on file from 1990 when Reddington disappeared.
He is identified by fingerprints alone in the pilot of the series.
And yet, in season 5, for the Rederina theory, we are meant to believe that somehow DNA from Raymond Reddington has magically appeared in CODIS, and Ian Garvey, US Marshall attached to Carla and Jennifer Reddington has been advised a match has been made.
We have three options. First, the DNA was a direct match and the plot makes no sense, nothing new there.
Second, the DNA is from Jennifer Reddington. But that is nonsensical, for upon learning that Jennifer's genitor is a skeleton, nobody would think that the man using the name of her legal father is an impostor, but would think instead that her mother was certainly having fun when Reddington was in Russia, and her husband, having found out about the hanky panky, had dispatched the man. A story of sex, betrayal, murder and paternity, but not of identity.
And the third option is that the DNA match was not of Reddington. Valuable bones as proof of death? In this case, it means that the report shown to Liz by Jennifer was a fake. Her little revenge for Garvey's death.
So, to believe that the DNA is indeed Reddington's we have to accept that the creator and writers were too lazy or too stupid to even add a line of how was the DNA added when they had made a point to tell us that it was not there in 2015.
Totally possible, especially in light of season 8B starting with the supremely stupid The Russian Knot, ending in the dumpster fire and the Toxic Fumes, TM by u/Anselmo213, followed by insipid season 9 and filler season 10, still ongoing.

Now let us focus on the exhumation of the bones, Kate's motives and actions. The bones is the last step in a long battle in which Kate took Red's money, sent his associates to jail, exposed his part in the Von Hauser death, and got the Apothecary to design a poison that would have suffocated Red slowly. She was doing all this, not to save Liz, whom she believed was past salvation, because she always had chosen Red over the truth, but to save Agnes.
The interesting thing, is that when she digs them, she touches the carved K on a tree with respect, and apologizes to Katarina. If Kate indeed would know Red is Katarina, in what universe does that action make any sense, especially when the bones are supposed to be those of a man she hated, when she has already poisoned Rederina to die slowly of suffocation!
Her attitude would make sense if she believed she had dug the bones of Katarina, thus ending the danger to Liz because with her mother dead, there is no using Liz as bait.
Kate dug the bones, even though she was going to testify. Without as much as a hint of their identity, attached a tag with Liz's name and address, and tasked Tom, never good for following orders, to give them to Liz. Consider Kate may have had one of her people do so without incurring in any mishaps, the choice of Tom seems designed to get him killed, particularly when she took pains to alert Red the bones were out and in route to Liz, and called the person delivering them her ally.
Let us get to the issue of what Dembe and Red discuss, when they go check the suitcase location and find it gone. The night before, unbeknown to Kate who had died earlier, Liz gets a test that proves that Raymond Reddington, from a sample from an old case before he disappeared, was Liz's father. She had confronted Red.
The non-denial that also happened in 4.22 should not be news:
DEMBE: You didn't deny it.
RED: I didn't.
DEMBE: And she thinks that's Kate's secret?
For Rederina and Third Man this is not an issue. He is not her father, because in one case he is her mother, and in the other he is unrelated, although his confession to Kirk, and Townsend's word make this impossible. But let us go to the first time he has denied it, which was in season 1, when Liz asks him directly, and obviously does not believe the answer.
Red had suffocated Sam (possibly at Sam's request to kill him swiftly) after promising the man who had been a father to Liz that Sam will always be her father, something only a biological father has any right to do. Not even a mother can do so, especially considering Sam WAS Liz's father, and especially true in the Rederina case, for Katarina had been responsible for what happened to Reddington, by targeting him, then babbling to the cabal about a fulcrum, then hiding his death and taking his gender and identity.
"You will always be her father, Sam. I can only hope that I can love her and protect her as you have."
Having given this promise on a deathbed to Sam, Red cannot ever say again he is Liz's father. He can say Liz is his daughter, for that shifts the onus to Liz. But Sam is her father.
This line, interpreted from the Rederina standpoint, is especially despicable. She got her father killed, had deceived her husband the child was his, told the cabal's Fitch who Liz's father was, then hid his death, had Ivan steal information from the KGB, so she will have even more enemies, made Liz's father as a traitor, assume the gender and identity, proceeded to abandon Liz, then killed the man who had actually been Liz's only parent, lied to Liz about her mother being dead by suicide, and her father who was a criminal had abandoned her, then directed her life from afar, like a puppet, and then, instead of letting her kill him and be done with it, insist they make up, then she kills him via emotional blackmail.
What right did Rederina have of assuming the man who had been Liz's only parent, that he had no intention of supplanting Sam as a father? WTF?
Then all in relationship to those bones this is what Dembe says:
"Raymond I'm not sure Elizabeth will ever be ready to learn about what you did to Katarina."
For the two theories that are not Rederina, this presents no problem. Red did something TO Katarina. Betrayed her, hurt her some way, kill her, whatever. But the phrasing of it, however, does presents a lot of issues for Rederina.
It implies that gender change was not done willingly, but was a last resort.
It is disquieting, even though we had already established in Cape May that according to the Rederina lens, in the Hobson's choice, Red describes his actions to save Liz and let the woman go as the worst he has done. Now Dembe seems to do the same, by implying the gender change was done unwillingly, yet Nachalo does not seem to have any of it. Katarina describes the "new Reddington" as someone useful, but has no hint of a tremendous sacrifice, the worst thing done.
It disassociates Rederina from Katarina, and implies some wrongdoing in what happened to her "what you did to her".
For the non-Rederina camps, it seems that the bones are somehow related to Katarina. They are something Red did TO her. Considering he later takes the bones to burn at Dom's that seems to be supported. This is supported as well by Kate's actions when she dug her, the carved "K" on the tree, and the loving attention to place them not in a trash bag, but on a suitcase.
Red told also both Liz and Tom that the bones were none of their business, which would certainly be a lie if they were the bones of either parent of Liz.
TO TOM: This is a secret, not a lie.
TO LIZ: I won't tell you something that's none of your business. It was none of Tom's business.

Finally we have to examine the role played by Jennifer Reddington AKA Lilly Roth (point #6), who is who briefly shows Liz a report that has Liz believe the bones are those of their father. A report that has not been seen or confirmed by anyone else, for the envelope Tom saw was not the same as the one Liz saw. Possibly a Prop Department's laziness or a clue. Right now who would know?

Red meets with Jennifer

One encounter which is truly remarkable if we want to analyze what Rederina does to the story is the encounter between Red and Jennifer. Red had maintained Jennifer under surveillance, since the bar shootout. She wants answers, and he wants the bones. So they meet. We do not know if she knows the report by then, and she is certainly not afraid of Red at all. She will lead Red to a cementery where her mother is buried as Naomi Hyland, dead the same year the bones were exhumed by Kate, 2017, 2 years prior to this moment.
So Red is telling Jennifer what HE thinks Jennifer wants to know, why was she abandoned.
We will examine this conversation in light of all possible situations, because either the writers were being extremely dishonest, or Jennifer is certainly speaking ambiguously:
RED: Put where the Cabal wouldn't find you.
JENNIFER: Or my father. (implying she may know already Red is not her father because he is an impostor)
but then JENNIFER: "After you left, we went into Witness Protection."
So, Jennifer, just like Kate seems to know both that the man there is her father and know he is an impostor. Dishonest writing especially if an unambiguous answer is never one we are meant to have and they were lying for 10 years saying they knew what the answer was and so would we at the end.

OPTION 1: Let us examine the conversation if we think Jennifer already knows the man talking to her is an impostor and assuming REDERINA:

REDERINA: "In 1990, the KGB and the CIA had almost nothing in common except the mutual determination to hunt down one individual."
That would be KATARINA ROSTOVA, the person talking to Jennifer. Well that is absolutely true for Rederina. Katarina was indeed being chased by both the Americans and the Russians. IN HIS INSTANCE REDERINA IS BEING HONEST with Jennifer
JENNIFER: "You".
THAT WOULD IMPLY THAT JENNIFER KNOWS HE IS KATARINA, for her father was not being chased by neither one.
REDERINA: "Being a fugitive from American law enforcement is a lot easier than being a fugitive from the two most powerful nations on Earth. And anyone close to a target of theirs becomes a target themselves."
So, Rederina is telling Jennifer that he became Reddington because it was easier to evade the FBI than the CIA and the KGB. Seems unusually open, but considering Cape may underr the Rederina interpretation tells us Katarina became Rederina because she had no choice, the Hobson's choice, the hardest thing he had done, equating it to suicide, Rederina is then telling Jennifer that he did all this simply to protect her family, which in this case is simply Liz, not her (Jennifer) or her mother (Carla).
JENNIFER: "Family."
REDERINA: "Especially family."
A confirmation then that with her father dead, Rederina seek to protect Katarina's family, Liz, for Jennifer is nothing to Rederina. Rederina tells Jennifer then all was done to protect Liz. Except for what follows:
REDERINA: "Unless they're abandoned on the side of a road on Christmas Eve."
WAIT. WHAT? Rederina is now telling Jennifer that her father's disappearance was due to his having abandoned HIS family, Jennifer and his wife, Carla, because he wanted to protect them? According to Nachalo he had just taken the fulcrum he had created by himself, taken his love child without so much as a goodbye to his wife, and holed up in that secret location, the family Summer house, to wait for Katarina (the human being telling this line), to show up for both her child and the fulcrum? Carla never said anything about a fire, only that he had never shown up, and they were waiting for him for Christmas? So now Rederina is adding that cruelty to Jennifer who already knows this man in front of him is not her father.
And here is were things get really weird.
JENNIFER: "After you left, we went into Witness Protection."
WTF? Supposedly in this scenario, because of what she says below "Or my father" Jennifer knows the man in from of her is not her father. So why is she then referring to Red as she would her father who LEFT THEM. So, does she knows her father is long dead, or does she not?
REDERINA: Put where the Cabal wouldn't find you.
JENNIFER: Or my father.
Well, if Rederina had not told Fitch who Liz's father was, and that he did have proof against the cabal, proof she failed to find THEN hid the death of Reddington all to make him into a traitor, then to assume his identity to protect Liz, Jennifer and Carla would be mourning the death of a stupid man who could not keep it in his pants, or figure out a Russian woman interested in the sap was not a KGB spy, but supposedly he just said the whole WITSEC was about protecting them from the cabal. WTF? I mean, W.T.F.?
REDERINA: An effective, albeit excruciatingly painful solution.
WHAT? Why would hiding Carla and Jennifer would be excruciating to him? Rederina chose to do all those stupid things supposedly to protect Liz and Carla and Jennifer, So why would all be painful? Especially after all that BS about having no choice in Cape May. How could ANY of this make any sense?
Effective?
You survived, as did your mother, to whom I hope you are now willing to take me.
Well then.
OPTION 2: Jennifer already KNOWS the man talking to her is NOT her father, he is an impostor.
IMPOSTOR RED: "In 1990, the KGB and the CIA had almost nothing in common except the mutual determination to hunt down one individual."
Katarina was indeed being chased by both the Americans and the Russians. So IMPOSTOR RED is being truthful that the origin of this mess is that Katarina was being chased by everyone she had betrayed.
JENNIFER: "You".
Since her father was not chased by anyone NOT the cabal, then she is just mistaken, or she assumes this impostor was just trying to save his own ass.
IMPOSTOR RED: "Being a fugitive from American law enforcement is a lot easier than being a fugitive from the two most powerful nations on Earth.
So, he is telling Jennifer that he became Reddington because it was easier to evade the FBI than it was for the person chased by the CIA and the KGB. Basically because Katarina was being chased, this man assumed the identity of Reddington because it was easier for him to do so than it was for Katarina to evade them, so there MUST be a connection between making Red a criminal, and her hiding which Nachalo told us that inventing a new criminal Reddington was useful, even though the stolen KGB information was the seed, which makes no sense.
IMPOSTOR RED: And anyone close to a target of theirs becomes a target themselves."
JENNIFER: "Family."
IMPOSTOR RED: "Especially family."
But then this is just peachy. So, this charade was done to protect the family of Rostova, basically Liz and Dom, as well as her understanding mother, happily gallivanting since 1991 eating burgers instead of borsch.
BUT here is the weird part:
IMPOSTOR RED: "Unless they're abandoned on the side of a road on Christmas Eve."
THIS IS PURE NONSENSE. Impostor Red is now telling Jennifer that her father's disappearance was due to his having abandoned HIS family, Jennifer and his wife, Carla, because REAL REDDINGTON wanted to protect them?
According to Nachalo REAL REDDINGTON had just taken the fulcrum he had created by himself, taken his love child without so much as a goodbye to his wife, and holed up in that secret location, the family Summer house, to wait for Katarina to show up for both her child and the fulcrum? Carla never said anything about a fire, only that he had never shown up, and they were waiting for him for Christmas? So, basically, Carla, KNOWING her husband was dead, had invented this disappearance story in order to get herself and her child to hiding, being an accomplice with Katarina, who had created the fake evidence, and using it herself to get herself and Jennifer in WITSEC?
And here is were things get really weird.
JENNIFER: "After you left, we went into Witness Protection."
WTF? Supposedly in this scenario, because of what she says below "Or my father" Jennifer knows the man in from of her is not her father. So why is she then referring to Red as she would her father who LEFT THEM. Suppsaoely she knows her father is long dead. Dishonest writing, bad writing or clue?
IMPOSTOR RED: Put where the Cabal wouldn't find you.
JENNIFER: Or my father.
So this whole scheme about Reddington being a traitor was a stratagem concocted by this impostor and Reddington's wife to protect both Carla and Jennifer?
IMPOSTOR RED: An effective, albeit excruciatingly painful solution.
JENNIFER: Effective?
IMPOSTOR RED: You survived, as did your mother, to whom I hope you are now willing to take me.
WTF? Why would an impostor who did not give a rat's ass about Carla or Jennifer give two hoots about being separated from them? Because it cannot be about his becoming Reddington, because apparently he did so willingly because Katarina was being chased by the KGB and the CIA.
It is a massive contradiction which only makes sense at train speed, but which cannot withstand a logical examination, just as the Rederina option was. Nonsense. Poppycock.

OPTION 3: Jennifer thinks she is talking to her father, and Red is acting like he is her father Reddington (term used in a broad manner, not necessarily a genitor).

RED: "In 1990, the KGB and the CIA had almost nothing in common except the mutual determination to hunt down one individual." (that would be Rostova, for Katarina was indeed being chased by both the Americans and the Russians. In here, Red can ONLY be telling Jennifer that Katarina was being chased by both, for we know Reddington was not.)
JENNIFER: "You". (In this case, Jennifer is mistaken, and since we do not see Red's reaction wether he nods or shakes his head in denial, he must have denied non-verbally.)
RED: "Being a fugitive from American law enforcement is a lot easier than being a fugitive from the two most powerful nations on Earth.
Red is telling Jennifer that because it was easier for him to become a fugitive from the FBI than it was for Katarina Rostova to evade the CIA and the KGB.
RED: "And anyone close to a target of theirs becomes a target themselves."
So, here Red is saying that when it came to the KGB and the CIA, they would go after the family. So, any relative of that person, who we know to be Katarina Rostova would be a target.
So far, Red has told Jennifer that in 1990, one person had been chased by the KGB and the CIA, and because that person's family would be in danger, he became a fugitive from the FBI because it was easier for him to evade the FBI than it was for that person, who we know to be Katarina, to evade the CIA and the FBI, to protect HER family.
JENNIFER: "Family."
RED: "Especially family."
So, confirming here that it is done to protect the family of THAT person, chased by the KGB and the CIA. Rostova not Reddington.
RED: "Unless they're abandoned on the side of a road on Christmas Eve."
Now he is saying that the official story of the disappearance of Raymond Reddington, that he disappeared on his way to see her and her mother on Christmas Eve, was done to protect her and her mother, while he had already said that the disappearance of her father was because it was easier to become a criminal chased by the FBI than it was for Rostova and her family to disappear and be safe from the KGB and the CIA.
According to Nachalo Reddington had just taken the fulcrum he had created by himself, taken his love child without so much as a goodbye to his wife, and holed up in that secret location, the family Summer house, to wait for Katarina to show up for both her child and the fulcrum?
Carla never said anything about a fire, only that he had never shown up, and they were waiting for him for Christmas? So, according to what Red is saying here, the disappearance of Reddington was a stunt to protect her family? his family?
JENNIFER: "After you left, we went into Witness Protection."
So, here Jennifer DOES know that Red IS her father who left her, and her mother, and when he did, they went into WITSEC, basically saying her mother testified or provided evidence that warranted her going into WITSEC.
RED: Put where the Cabal wouldn't find you.
Red then says that doing so was to protect Carla and Jennifer, a stunt created to hide them from the cabal. A lie, that her mother was scared of her husband, and an admission to us that the charges of treason were fabricated, which we saw when Carla pretends to be afraid in 2.01.
JENNIFER: Or my father.
Jennifer here then does not know Red is not her father, but it is saying that they were hidden in such a manner than her father could not find them, even if he had wanted to.
RED: An effective, albeit excruciatingly painful solution.
JENNIFER: Effective?
RED: You survived, as did your mother, to whom I hope you are now willing to take me.
He admits here that being separated from his wife and child was a solution that although was painful for him, it served the purpose of keeping both Carla and Jennifer alive. Then the whole thing, his becoming a criminal, based on the evidence given by her mother served the purpose of putting them in WITSEC to hide, because it was easier for him to become a criminal, via the evidence provided by his wife, than it was for Katarina Rostova to evade the KGB and the CIA, to protect HER family, essentially saying that Jennifer IS the family of Katarina Rostova, essentially saying that the woman Jennifer knew as her mother, and we saw as Carla AKA Naomi IS Katarina Rostova, hidden in WITSEC from the KGB, the CIA and the cabal, and kept there because her husband was a criminal at large, and she provided testimony or proof against him, a rouse.

<<<<< CONCLUSIONS OF SEASON 5 >>>>>
So here is where we are. The bones as the remains of the "real" Raymond Reddington makes sense so long as we do not examine details, dialogue and motivations. Nachalo makes it even worse. Total nonsense.
Unless the show changed directions, but then why would Bokenkamp, Eisendrath, Reiter , Knauff and the rest with such patent nonsense?
Why write lines that make it impossible that Red is other than Reddington, even, if he is still an impostor, in the sense nobody was born Raymond Reddington?
ROSS TO RED: "Let's start with this DNA report. For 30 years, I've wanted to be in the same room as Raymond Reddington, the bastard who tricked me into selling the Chinese a dodo bird when they were looking for an eagle. And here we are. So, the DNA report tell me what it means."
KATE TO THE BONES: "I'm sorry, Katarina."
NIK TO TOM: "Reddington's her father? I can't say I'm surprised. I'm sad for her. That sucks, but what does this have to do with me? "
RED TO SAM: "You will always be her father, Sam. I can only hope that I can love her and protect her as you have."
SAMAR: "Yes, and we can't disprove it with DNA because there's nothing on file from 1990 when Reddington disappeared."
GARVEY TO LIZ AND JENNIFER: "Reddington's (RED) her father.... Now I get it. Reddington (RED) and your husband (TOM), how they knew each other. Reddington (RED) didn't know you (LIZ) through him (TOM). He knew him (TOM) through you (LIZ)."
GARVEY TO TOM: "You know, all this time I've given you to think has prompted me to do some thinking of my own. And, uh I got to tell you, I'm stumped. When you consider all the people on the planet who would be interested in the contents of that case and you multiply that number by an even greater number of unspeakable things those people would do to get it, how the hell could it end up in the hands of a little pissant like you?"
SMOKEY ABOUT THE BONES: "If what you're looking for is as valuable as you say, why why why why didn't they put it up for auction?"
RED: "You have the bones. You already know the truth."
DEMBE KNOWING ROSS KNOWS THE BONES ID: "Ross wants blood. He thinks you (RED) ruined his life."
DEMBE KNOWING ROSS KNOWS THE BONES ID: "But he thinks you (RED) did, and because of that, he wants to world to know what's inside the duffel."
RED TO JENNIFER: "Being a fugitive from American law enforcement is a lot easier than being a fugitive from the two most powerful nations on Earth. And anyone close to a target of theirs becomes a target themselves.... Especially family. Unless they're abandoned on the side of a road on Christmas Eve...An effective, albeit excruciatingly painful solution.....You survived, as did your mother, to whom I hope you are now willing to take me."
JENNIFER TO RED: "After you left, we went into Witness Protection."
We continue later to seasons 6 to 8.
submitted by TessaBissolli to TheBlackList [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 13:21 Mimetic_ v1.10 Experimental I

v1.10 Experimental I
Hello Galactic Survivalists!
Welcome to Empyrion Galactic Survival version 1.10 Experimental!
In this update for you to test, we've added locale missions for each starter playfield (5x5 = 25 in total) to offer more variation to the early gameplay experience. Although these missions are fully optional and do not (yet) relate to the main storyline they will be shedding some early light on a few important story backgrounds in the Empyrion universe.
The introduction of the location missions is accompanied by a major maintenance of the main missions to make the final adjustment to the new game start environments. To achieve this, we have implemented numerous fixes for improved story progression and several bug fixes for reported issues (see full changelog below)
In addition to the mission updates, we've expanded the game universe by updating the existing faction homeworlds and adding new ones. Thanks to our community contributors, these updates come with an impressive addition of over 300 new Points of Interest (POIs) and vessels, enhancing the scope of exploration and discovery..
On the technical side of things, we've worked on visual and auditory enhancements to provide a more immersive in-game environment. While the visuals of the suns got a general overhaul, the addition of ‘tessellation’ will significantly improve the planetary terrain quality. In the meantime, our sound department not only worked on the SFX themselves, but also added the long-wanted dynamic combat soundtrack feature!
For our multiplayer and co-op players, we've incorporated a new role system, designed to expand cooperative possibilities within the game. You can now grant access to devices based on your player faction role!
We also haven't forgotten our creative players, with improvements made to the Creative Scenario Building Helper Tools, adding several convenience features and even completely new functions to improve building and reduce friction.
Last, but not least, there are two crucial infos you should be aware of:
  1. The Mass/Volume + CPU + Blocklimits are now enabled by default. This setting can be adjusted in the game start menu if desired.
  2. The Blueprint Factory can now only be used when all devices of a blueprint have been unlocked in the tech tree. There are new (colored) info & messages to indicate what is missing.
Please refer to the full changelog for a comprehensive overview of all updates, adjustments, and fixes. We always appreciate your feedback on these changes.
Report bugs over here: https://empyriononline.com/forums/bugs.34/
Feedback: https://empyriononline.com/forums/experimental-features-discussion.35/
Best regards, The Empyrion Team
Changelog v1.10 B4201 2023-05-31
Default Scenario Update (WiP): POI & OPVs: Added/updated about 300 space & ground stations, wreckages, dungeons, small and large, weak and strong combat and civilian vessels - created, reworked and updated by various authors and community contributors (check details at: https://empyriononline.com/forums/showroom-submissions.108/).
Thanks a lot to everyone building for Empyrion <3
Missions
  • Added locale mission arcs (with 5 missions each) to all starter planets:
  1. Akua: Clear Skies
  2. Ningues: Andromeda Strain
  3. Masperon: Bad Wolf
  4. Skillon: Deserted Powers
  5. Ashon: To Good Business
Note: To start the mission, find the main mission hub on the playfield (there are indications in PDAs and/or notifiers when approaching a mission relevant POI)
  • Adjusted main storyline contents, mission structure and dialogues (eg. shortened amount of text and/or added more SKIP routes)
  • Changed start location and context of main storyline (Prelude now starts when arriving on Omicron Sector!)
  • Fixed several reported bugs and issues with the main storyline (please retest!). Most important changes:
  • Updated: Story Mission 'Totally Overpowered' updated to new settings and faction references. Dialogues updated to reflect context changes.
  • Updated: Story Mission 'Glacial Grave': Reduced Log content (amount of text) found on the system consoles down to 1-page logs and made several other refinements on procedures.
  • Updated: Story Mission 'Ancient Revelations': fixed issues with opening doors too early, changed creatures to variants that better fit some room sizes. Staircase now cleared when using shortcut from main access to upper level; added some additional markers in some places.
  • Updated: Story Mission 'Uncertain Outcomes': fixed several issues in mission progression; Set stations to civil + admin cores; removed Tier3 ores from mission asteroids.
  • Updated: Story Mission Interlude 'Meet the GLaD': added some skip areas to Dialogues and streamlined text info for summaries
  • Updated: Story Mission 'Sigma Fulcrum': Reduced clickcount on station console (each message now only shown once as long as player stays in the dialogue); Fixed a few inconsistencies with mission progress; Note the station is still set to Colonists faction you won't damage your reputation with. So first ask, then shoot.
  • Updated: Story Mission 'Unexpected Allies': Fixed faction settings to not break mission progress. Updated some dialogues; updated info + added more SKIP routes in dialogues.
  • Updated: Story Mission 'Wins and losses': Adjusted some text elements; Fixed progression issues. (Note, this is currently the LAST mission. Final mission might be added for 1.11 or 1.12)
  • Deactivated 'Murky Christmas' mission (as this is seasonal content).
  • General change on story mission factions & enemies: When there is no chance to proceed in a story mission other than to fight against a dynamic-RP faction, the opponents will be set to "Alien" to not forcefully ruin player reputation. If there is a choice, e.g. to trade, talk or fight, a dynamic faction might be used & the decision to ruin the Reputation towards them is up to the players themselves.
Factions & Reputation & NPCs
  • Set UCH to dynamic faction reputation
  • Added a static player-friendly 'technical' faction 'PlayerAssistDefaultHostile' (PDH) to help with mission setups that require combat against default-hostile factions and RP is not spoiled by friendly-fire or the faction is already used in another context. The faction is not intended to have POI or territories but is a "technical" static faction only.
  • Reworked faction reputation matrix: eg. added more crossover effects (pos and negative), removed too strong level-drop effects and added specific RP-loss amounts to some blocks (f.ex. Cores)
  • Changed NPC groups (EclassConfig) and updated terrain-spawned patrol groups (Egroup)
  • Telluropod now available from NPC Spawners
Gameworld
  • Updated home systems and home planets for all major and minor factions (1st iteration)
  • Added home systems for community-submitted factions
  • Sorted/changed blueprint groups of lots of POIs for the factions
  • Sorted blueprint groups for all faction OPVs (space and planet) into tiers.
Note: if your scenario uses default BP groups, their contents might have changed!
  • Changed: Several story-mission-relevant POI did not have an admin core
  • Changed: Enemy attack in story mission context is now mostly set to "alien" faction to avoid spoiling reputation unintentionally.
  • Added a few battered, free-roaming cannon drones to Ningues, Skillon and Masperon (Alien faction; will attack player, but not other NPCs)
  • Changed: Activated Base Attacks on Akua (Talon) and Masperon (Zirax/Abyssal)
  • Changed: Akua SupplyDepot swapped Raptor02 with RaptorNight and interior AlienBug01v2 with Spider01
  • Updated Ocean planet (decoration, atmosphere, textures & biomes)
https://preview.redd.it/ndzxe7djz63b1.jpg?width=2560&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=731fe6400b87416260b4fe82a0549827911d6042
https://preview.redd.it/hj9u4fvjz63b1.jpg?width=2560&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=693b0c96e9b789cb61138c5d15b29ee9378e0842
Gameworld - Stars
  • Space: Tweaked looks for star types O,B,F,A,G,K,M, LegacyNexusHub
  • Space: Adjusted playfield lighting colours and brightness. (O: Much brighter; B: Bright)
  • Galaxy map: Star types easier to tell apart in distance
  • Increased size class for G, A type stars and SmBH
Config Changes Global configs
  • Important change: Mass/Volume/CPU/Blocklimit = default on (Can be changed in settings at gamestart!); Full changelog & feedback & known issues thread: < >
  • Important change: Blueprints cannot be put into the Factory if the player hasn't unlocked the needed items in the techtree yet!
  • New optional parameter "ignoreOtherTarget" is available for Pf-Ops SpawnDrone, SpawnOPV and SpawnTroopTransport
  • Updated info in galaxyconfig.ecf about hiding a solar system
  • Added information about AuxPoi setup to example playfield yaml
  • Added new parameter 'DisableProximityLog' (true/false) for gameoptions.yaml to allow disabling the proximity log button in registry
Dialogue System
  • Added possibility to omit the cone for NPC with dialogues (class NPCDialogue) by adding the property OmitCone: true in BlocksConfig.ecf
  • Added function string GetFaction(int entityId) that returns the faction name from the FactionConfig.ecf
  • Added a property "DialogueState" to BlocksConfig.ecf to be used in blocks of class "NPCDialogue" to allow specifying a hard coded target dialog. If this is present, this block can be placed by users on player bases and be also triggered using "F".
  • Added new function GetStructure(entityId)
Multiplayer / Coop
  • Added PlayerFaction Role dropdown UI to Control Panel's Devices page. To make use of this add a lock code for the device then check the “Private” box & select one of the roles from the drop down GUI
https://preview.redd.it/e7koy67mz63b1.jpg?width=766&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=a2134df151699c90f9e84d30187f8913bcc94901
Creative Mode / Scenario
  • WIP: Added a new tool to manage blueprint part collections “Blueprint Parts Collection Tool”. To try this tool out in creative mode use 'di wdw' in the console to test it. See this video for tips on how to use it https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDZ0Rof3cbw
  • Creative mode improvement: if SHIFT (run key) is pressed the focus box now focuses inside the target block (pressing RMB will remove it and LMB will replace it). The removal was working before, but now the focus is also placed correctly.
  • BuildSettingsMenu: Green pasted area can now also be mirrored "in place"
  • BuildSettingsMenu: Green pasted area will now collide with its surrounding structure if pressing LEFT-SHIFT while moving (using the move handles)
  • Default Creative scenario: Updated Temperate and Arid playfields to new decoration. Updated selection pictures.
Visual Refinements & Controller upgrades
  • Added Global Illumination, Dynamic Shadows & Terrain Tessellation & video options to google these on & off
https://preview.redd.it/8by9jaktz63b1.jpg?width=3840&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=b497ff07bf4b8baabcc02d4d1c16934c6f290ba5
https://preview.redd.it/9gviphs0073b1.jpg?width=2552&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=cfc5943372dff5f974292713f7ffd93efe8fffdf
  • New force field VFX added to all blocks that have a forcefield visible

  • New swimming animations added
Sound / SFX:
  • Added dynamic combat soundtrack change
  • WIP: Adjusted device volume levels to be lower overall
Guided Tutorial:
  • EndSpace: Fix for broken dialog of Fleet Command
Fixes:
  • Explorer Token for faction homeworlds should now work/be given again (also for the new dynamic factions!)
  • Explorer Token for first-pickup for ores did not work anymore or were given randomly
  • Falling animation is playing when you fly a vessel.
  • pf data not found if trying to respawn to it
  • 00858: Collision model for deco block - Antena 05 is missed
  • 00912: Collision model for block Deco SVDecoAeroblister01 is missed
  • 00910: Large thrusters are flickering in 1PV after resume the game
  • 00897: Retractable turrets can be invisible when they are turned off
EAH: - https://eah.empyrion-homeworld.net/download/patch-notes-emp-admin-helper-full
submitted by Mimetic_ to empyriongame [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 13:15 AlienNationSSB Alien-Nation Chapter 170: Scopes

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Chapter Summary: Scopes: Borzun sneaks a signature from her superior to pass on to the Fleet Admiral
First Contact: Human Security Forces Patrol gets dispatched to investigate the radio signals, and are killed. They do not get a report off, but go missing

Scopes

On Board Space Station 13

"-Got a signal," Chief Data Officer Remec's live audio feed cut out from the video she was richly enjoying, the interruption immediately spoiling her lovely, if otherwise lonely weekend night.
"What was that?" She choked out, lurching awkwardly in the low gravity. She may have been off her shift, but if she was being bothered now... It had better be important.
The Chief Data Officer muted herself on the new local call, a wave of the hand switching her mic back to what she had been watching. She whispered an apology to the cam-boy, and paused their private session, guilt wracking her, Some part of her mind liked to believe that he genuinely would miss her.
Using the fully immersive setup for this constituted a degree of misuse of her equipment, but she was far from alone in the practice.
Supposedly, low gravity enabled all kinds of exotic positions, and she intended to take full advantage of the noiseproof cabins each Data Officer was provided. Curiosity had given way to vague plans after enough sessions. First, she was thwarted from having alone time with the Asset. Now, she felt she was building trust with one who had caught her eye.
The special bodysuit may have kept her insulated against the faulty old air ducts' temperamental nature as she moved about the station from office to office, but it was restrictive and uncomfortable. More consequentially, taking it off and putting it on was noisy, if not easy to do quickly for the sake of any emergencies that might happen on-board a ship.
The bodysuit's crinkling finally tapered off after wrapping itself around her form with an almost vacuum seal firmness, and she switched on her camera, hoping she didn't appear flushed or sweaty. Borzun's gracile, almost-masculine face filled the main view screen.
"Sorry, I didn't catch what you said. I think the comms array on this old hulk's finally starting to give out," her junior officer apologized.
Great. If Borzun went ahead and filed a report, that would require an inspection. Remec silently mourned the waste of credits. Even if it wasn't her purse, Remec knew she had a limited number of credits she could skim for 'Cultural Research' before someone would take notice, especially if the allotment for maintenance didn't amount to enough to effect so simple a repair.
"Perhaps it was just a software bug. I can hear you just fine, you can hear me, right? I was just asking: 'What seems to be the issue?'" Remec fibbed and tried to change topics in the same breath.
"We've got a rogue signal, unencrypted. Apparently the emergency radio system has been hijacked, priority one ticket from the surface."
She lamented that with this potentially pending repair bill hanging over her head, she couldn't tap it for the bribes she'd need to sneak him, or someone like him up here like she'd hoped. What a waste.
"'Priority one'?"
"Ma'am, please, we have to hurry, it's an emergency," Borzun's shamelessly pleading voice was grating, and Chief Data Officer Remec forced herself to not grunt in annoyance at being addressed in that tone, and she shook her head free of the mental cobwebs and out of the pleasant, lingering tingles of the afterglow. What a terrible way to come down from such heights.
"Yes, I'm aware what a priority one is. I was just...settling another fight between The Decimals. Apparently their Data Teams are threatening to hurl themselves out their airlocks, just so that they can board the other's space stations and attack each other."
"Of course, ma'am. I did hear they'd recently been placed upon separate vessels. This isn't about that, though."
Remec almost felt insulted that Borzun sounded almost like she didn't believe her; The excuse was grounded in truth well enough. Her last meeting having been a debriefing of what went on at Space Station 92. It had been split into decimals, 92.2, 92.4, and '92.6', or 'Data Team Balkans,' as they were now known, with the probability they'd soon need a 92.8 just to cover the same geographic are of what had once been just 'Satellite 92.'
Apparently the posting had been an unending migraine for their poor Chief Data Officer, and equally as frustrating for the General on the ground who found her troops making a show of firing ineffectually at units from other postings to curry favor with the locals. Remec could still hear the seething tone of their Chief Data Officer, "I don't care how effective it is at ingratiating yourself with them, firing your weapon at other law-abiding Shil'vati without provocation is still a crime! It is considered what civilian governing authorities call a 'War Crime' on this planet! No, being a 'War Criminal' is not 'Based,' and their continued existence is not a provocation! It could potentially violate our treaty with Earth's government! Other factions could legally have grounds to jump in to conduct 'peacekeeping'!"
Borzun's expression seemed pensive- lost in thought despite the so-called emergency that had pulled Remec away from her fantasy.
The only consolidation she had was that as bad as things were for Space Station 13 presently, at least their problems were temporary, and confined to the planet's surface.
"What's the issue? I already read that the Public Address signal was hijacked. Just reset it." That didn't require bothering her.
"We did," the young svelte Data Officer offered apologetically, skin looking more blue than purple in the artificial light. "No effect. We need them turned off for now, and that requires your clearance. The message is instructing the insurgent humans how to resist, and is spreading disinformation that we are kidnapping everyone. That's greatly hampering the efforts of the Governess-General, so she really wants this done, fast."
"It's not 'everyone'," the commanding officer snorted in annoyance. "It's a...couple dozen thousand." The number was high, she had to admit, and still climbing. Quite an impressive percentage of the state's small population. She had a nagging sense that an even larger pile of work was about to be placed squarely on her desk for all this mess, and fought to resist dumping the resentment she felt at this near-certainty on her subordinate, when simply dumping the paperwork would be far more productive.
"It's certainly distressing the local population, causing a great deal of unrest. Even the reinforcements that were deployed to Delaware may find themselves embroiled in riot control," Borzun agreed readily enough, though she sounded somewhat distracted as she spoke, her eyes flicking to the side, likely as she prepared the form signature. "Since it's an emergency system, that requires an override, and since it's a communications signal, that's our domain."
"Done," she muttered, signing it without even reading and giving it a hand gesture. and felt grateful that at least Borzun was efficient in her interruptions. So much better than dealing with the Asset, who remained under the Marines' lock-and-key, but kept trying to lodge all kinds of complaints and empty threats. The file disappeared off her desk just as quickly as it had appeared, and Borzun seemed relieved to have gotten her permission.
Hope blossomed in the bosom of Remec that this would be over fast enough to rejoin the session.
"Was that all?"
"Sent," Borzun chirped, though her face was mirthless. "There's also the matter of local shortwave radio signals. We've been operating on orders to jam the channels, but they are operating on military bandwidths reserved for use of security forces and other agencies, but are clearly local individuals. This is in defiance of local and federal law. Again, that will require clearance to do so. Human authorities consider this quite a significant breach of law."
"You have my permission to shut those down, too, or otherwise jam them."
"Rather than shutting them down by jamming, since they seem to just jump channels and crowd the airwaves further, Lieutenant Goshen- sorry, Captain Goshen and Lieutenant Lesha believe that this presents an opportunity to steer us toward their points of origin, and to add them to any prosecutions we mount on the arrested, and to make up for the missing data we lost when the Data Center was destroyed. We can try mobilizing small task forces to isolate the busier signals and disrupt them. That won't drain womanpower too much, and might even bring peace to the state. Or, we may end up achieving Azraea's goal of flushing the rebels out, and finding others who are sympathetic to the insurgency and bringing them to justice. At the least, it might reclaim some equipment out of their hands, temporarily crippling their ability to continue coordinating before the 'primary' election."
"I see. So you're asking me to not shut the signal down, in case anyone else asks. Is that right?"
"Yes, ma'am. If the signal is jammed, they'll jump channels, and we may lose information we're gathering, too."
"Alright, sure. I'll refuse any requests to shut them down, make sure the officers are informed to not lodge such requests to us." Anything to get her moment alone back. "And Borzun? Just a reminder; You don't need my permission to cooperate with the Governess-General's forces or to comply with her orders," Remec added. She noted with mounting irritation she had enough time to restart the session, but that the timer was ticking down, while Borzun didn't hang up.
"These ones seem to be live signals, delivering instructions to teams and coordinating chaos. Can I be dedicated to that, and use your clearance to utilize visual scanning once the sun rises? I may be requested to guide patrols to investigate these."
Remec was almost ready to pull her hair out. Visual observation from the satellites was always fiercely resisted by noblewomen. She almost denied the permission, but knew Azraea's wrath would likely follow if the Data Teams were held back on her orders. Like she doesn't hate us enough.
"Are they evacuated?"
"Who?"
"Who do you think I mean, the Empress? I'm asking if the Noblewomen from Delaware are still there, of course!" Remec finally snapped, and the slender Data Officer recoiled as if she'd been slapped by the rebuke.
"As-a-aah...yes, ma'am?" Borzun tried. "The order was sent out, I believe all families are off-world, spare one. They're apparently looking for a girl, gathering the family before liftoff per the evacuation order, but I've got two files here? Must be a clerical error."
A judgment call, then, but a simple one.
"Fine. Permission granted. But keep your gaze confined to areas of operations, and only if you think it would help an already active operation. Don't let your curiosity get the better of you."
"Yes ma'am," Borzun reported, sounding overly-repentant. Naturally, fragile Borzun wished to dodge witnessing or working with the unpleasantness of rounding up terrorists. Likely she'd been hoping for a 'no.' "What if I find and intercept a signal? Should I trace it?"
The content of the signals they'd shut down and guided to the interior after intercept were likely disturbing, and Borzun was undeniably among the softest of those aboard the old relic that served as Space Station 13. Remec had hoped the girl would have gained some toughness in Earth's gravity, or at least a hardened heart from being in approximate proximity to a terrorist strike's explosion. Then she might have learned to understand what a terrorist riddled state truly meant, and the necessity of their duties, but instead the opposite had happened. She'd come back with an even softer spot for the humans.
Oh well, there was little point in having a potential sympathizer in such a position or subjecting her subordinates to it out of some vague, unhelpful cruelty. Maybe more exposure would finally do her good. Toughen her up, and get her to stop crying to her seniors whenever something went wrong. Remec, sign this. Remec, can I do that? Now that Remec thought about it, even the level of permission she'd been bothered for didn't require her signature- Borzun was senior enough to shut down signals on her own.
"Of course. Find the signals, the broadcasters, and shut them down locally, if you know what I mean."

They Say First Contact's the Hardest

[Meanwhile, back at Camp Death...]
The staccato pops of gunpowder rifles sent me from 'fast asleep' to wide awake in a heartbeat.
I threw the blanket and sleeping bag off of me, boots flopping loosely after I'd left them undone to avoid cutting off my circulation as staggered to my feet, finding my way to standing tall but disoriented.
The muffled crack of energy weapons being discharged responded, and I ran to the light- finding myself staring out at the almost empty stream below. I doubled back just in time to hear deafening responses of rounds fired from railguns split the air.
I passed over the hard dirt floor, pushed my way past a sentry who had come to find me, and climbed up the trench ladder to watch, dozens of others pushing their way out from the claustrophobically packed bunkers and tunnels to see the commotion.
Blinking the sleep from my eyes and grateful for the rapidly adapting shaded lenses, I saw distant figures pushing their way through the tall grasses as ever more rounds began to fire at them, several charging down from Camp Death and running them down where they fell, chasing the path of beaten down grasses to finish the job.
Maybe they were true loyalists. Maybe they were just well-trained. Maybe they came from countries long locked in bitter civil wars, where surrenders led to fates worse than dying on one's feet. Whatever the reason, the last of them finally staggered and fell. None of them had even tried to surrender. I could respect that, even if I found myself on the other end of the conflict as them.
By the position of the sun and season, I guessed it might be around six in the morning, and we'd just had first hard contact- that I was aware of.
Shit.
I looked over to Radio's pile of equipment, a masked insurgent with the golden stripe of yellow electrical tape wound around their mask to indicate their role flashed me a thumbs up. I approached the sentry after seeing no more movement, hearing the distant gunfire as insurgents fell upon the Security Forces soldiers with zeal. I didn't hear any more lasgun fire. "Please tell me that was turned on," I gestured to the jammer.
"They were spotted on approach from the field. I powered on the jammer in the way I was instructed. They promptly stopped advancing on us, likely having lost contact with their superiors, and began to turn back before coming up the hill. We decided it was better than letting them wander out of jammer range and summon reinforcements."
"Good," I muttered. I could see G-Man poking his head out of the Command Cabin. Had he and George put that idea in my head just to steal my bed off me? I shook my head. George wasn't that underhanded; Not that I minded. He'd had a rougher day than almost anyone.
"Haul them and their equipment in. Get any wounded of ours to the doc bot. We can interrogate them."
The sentry gave a hand on heart. "Sir."
And so the first blood had been drawn. The squad was only six soldiers, I learned. Half a squad, or two 'pods.'
In the time since last night, the slow trickle of ones-and-twos had turned into a steady stream pouring into Camp Death. Now that the morning shone through the thick trees ringing our little forest. I wondered idly if the trees had always been so- certainly it didn't seem to me Verns had ever mentioned such heavy machinery as to bring those trees, and my swing of a hatchet hadn't even caused the bark to split off from the trunks.
Knowing I was stalling, I paced the ramparts, delivering quick reminders, last second orders to the new arrivals. Eventually it became clear even to me that I was being more of an annoyance than helpful leader; The sentries knew their duties well. So I resigned myself to dutifully patrolling the grounds, never far from the radio tower, nor the ramparts, keeping a chest puffed out and a brave face again, occasionally striking a pose as I squinted through my mask, as if I could make the enemy materialize.
I dared not call it a facade, no matter how true it might've been.
[Author's Note: Almost did it again, had to delete the first attempt at a post because I left in too much.]
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2023.05.31 08:48 Economy-Culture-9174 An Ultimate Complete List of everything Tom DeLonge, Mark Hoppus & Travis Barker ever created - blink-182, AvA, BCR, +44 and more [Updated Version]

A while ago I created an ultimate chronological list of everything that Mark, Tom and Travis created, there is a lot of stuff and many side and solo projects, featurings etc. but with some help from you guys, I was able to extend it so I think it's almost 100% complete now therefore I am posting this one more time.
The new fans are still discovering this great band and every once a while I see them asking about this here and I am also sure there will be more people coming when the new album/single drops. So I hope this will be useful for someone, it took some time to do it.

Music/Audio

blink-182 Demos
  1. Flyswatter (demo)
  2. 21 Days (demo)
  3. Buddha (demo)
  4. Enema Of The State DEMO (demo)
blink-182 EPs
  1. Short Bus (EP)
  2. They Came To Conquer Uranus (EP)
  3. Dogs Eating Dogs (EP)
blink-182 Albums
  1. Cheshire Cat (Album)
  2. Dude Ranch (Album)
  3. Buddha (Album)
  4. Enema Of The State (Album)
  5. Take Off Your Pants and Jacket + Bonus songs that aren't on Spotify (Album)
  6. Untitled (Album)
  7. Neighborhoods Deluxe (Album)
  8. California (Album with Matt Skiba)
  9. NINE (Album with Matt Skiba)
  10. 2023 Album (October 2023)
blink-182 Live Albums
  1. The Mark, Tom & Travis Show (Live Album)
blink-182 Singles and Covers
  1. Dancing With Myself (cover)
  2. I Won't Be Home For Christmas
  3. Good Times (cover)
  4. Dead Man's Curve (TV song)
  5. Life's So Boring (see Demos - Enema of The State demo)
  6. A Letters To Elise & Boys Don't Cry (The Cure Covers)
  7. Hope (Descendents cover)
  8. Not Now & Another Girl Another Planet (Bonus songs from the Greatest Hits)
  9. Out Of My Head (NINE Bonus Song)
  10. Not Another Christmas Song
  11. Quarantine
  12. Falling (unreleased song)
  13. Edging (New Era Single)
  14. More Than You'll Ever Know (June 2. 2023?)

Box Car Racer - Tom's project with Travis
  1. Box Car Racer - Box Car Racer (Album)
  2. BCR Non Released -Dance With Me, Mandy (Cover)

(+44) - Mark's and Travis' project
  1. +44 - When Your Heart Stops Beating (Album)
  2. +44 Covers - I Am One, Christmas Vacation and Guten Tag

Transplants - Travis' project
  1. Transplants - Transplants (Album)
  2. Transplants - Haunted Cities (Album)
  3. Transplants - In A War Zone (Album)
  4. Transplants - Take Cover (EP)

Angel & Airwaves - Tom's Project
  1. Angels & Airwaves - We Don't Need to Whisper (Album)
  2. Angels & Airwaves - I-Empire (Album)
  3. Angels & Airwaves - LOVE I & II (Double Album)
  4. Angels & Airwaves - LOVE Movie OST
  5. Angels & Airwaves - Stomping The Phantom's Brake Pedal (EP)
  6. Angels & Airwaves - Dream Walker (Album)
  7. Angels & Airwaves - Dream Walker Demos (Demo Album)
  8. Angels & Airwaves - Of Nightmares (EP)
  9. Angels & Airwaves - Chasing Shadows (EP)
  10. Angels & Airwaves - We Don't Need To Whisper Acoustic (EP)
  11. Angels & Airwaves - Lifeforms (Album)

Simple Creatures - Mark's Project
  1. Simple Creatures - Strange Love (EP)
  2. Simple Creatures - Everything Opposite (EP)

Tom DeLonge
  1. Say Anything - Nibble Nibble (Song)
  2. Tom DeLonge - Odds & Ends (Album)
  3. Ilenium - Paper Thin (Song)
  4. Tom DeLonge - All That's Left Is Love (Song)

Travis Barker
  1. Travis Barker - Give The Drummer Some
  2. Aquabats - The Fury Of The Aquabats
  3. 6 Feet Underground
  4. Saturday Night
  5. Just Chill
  6. Let's Go
  7. Misfits
  8. Mod Sun - Down
  9. Mod Sun - Never Quit
  10. Machine Gun Kelly featurings
  11. Avril Lavigne - Alone
  12. Avril Lavigne - Bite Me
  13. Avril Lavigne - Bois Lie
  14. Run The Jewels - Forever
  15. All Other Travis Barker's Collabs & Featurings

Mark Hoppus
  1. Ataris - That Special Girl
  2. Simple Plan - I'd Do Anything
  3. Box Car Racer - Elevator
  4. New Found Glory - Something I Call Personality
  5. MxPx - Empire
  6. MxPx - Wrecking Hotel Rooms
  7. Motion City Soundtrack - Hangman
  8. Renee Renee - Paper Doll
  9. Vanilla Sky - Nightmare
  10. Mark Hoppus & Pete Wentz - In Transit (Alice In Wonderland OST)
  11. Mark Hoppus & Richard Gibbs - Until The Stars Fall
  12. Angels & Airwaves - Hallucinations Remix
  13. Forget The Pacific - Sweet 16
  14. City Coma Sate - You Crush My Heart
  15. Tonight Alive - Thank you and Goodnight
  16. McBusted - I Hate Your Guts
  17. New Found Glory - Ready And Willing II
  18. Mark Hoppus & Travis Barker - Ameoba
  19. Mark Hoppus & Owl City - Dementia
  20. Neck Deep - December
  21. Goldfinder - See Your Around
  22. Mark Hoppus - Not Every Dog Goes To Heaven
  23. Amy Shark - Psycho
  24. State Champs - Time Machine
  25. McFly - Growing Up
  26. The Used - The Lighthouse
  27. Super Whatevr - Carhartts & Converse
  28. Arrested Youth - Find My Own Way
  29. Ricky Himself - Parasocial
  30. A Day To Remember - Re-Entry
  31. Avril Lavigne - All I Wanted
  32. Beauty School Dropout - Almost Famous
  33. Smrtdeath - Adding Up
  34. Mark Hoppus Other Collabs & Featurings

Misc
  1. All other stuff - remixes, features, covers, tributes, songs that didn't appear on any album
  2. Unwritten Law - Lonesome (cameo)
  3. AvA - What A Wonderful World (L.Armstrong cover)
  4. Steve Aoki - Why Are We So Broken
  5. Goody Grace - Scumbag
  6. The Chainsmokers - P.S. I Hope You're Happy
  7. Blink182 and Mumford & Sons - Brohemian Rhapsody
  8. Oliver Tree - Let Me Down
  9. XXXTentacion - It's All Fading to Black
  10. Lil Peep – ​the song they played
  11. Powfu and Beabadoobee - Death Bed (Bonus Remix)

Video - DVDs & Documentaries

blink-182
  1. Good Times
  2. Josie B Roll Footage
  3. Urethra Chronicles I
  4. Enema Of The State Bonus Video
  5. Urethra Chronicles II
  6. Road Home
  7. Riding in Vans With Boys
  8. MTV Diaries Pop Disaster Tour
  9. Cheetah TOYPAJ Era
  10. Untitled MTV Launch + Cheetah Videos
  11. On The Road With Blink-182
  12. 2004 Unreleased Documentary
  13. Blinkumentary)
  14. New Cheetah Videos
Box Car Racer
  1. Box Car Racer Doc
Tom DeLonge
  1. Buzzworthy Interview
  2. Pursuit of Tone - Tom DeLonge
  3. Ernie Ball - String Theory
Travis Barker
  1. Meet The Barkers
  2. Til Death Do Us Part
Angels & Airwaves
  1. Start The Machine (making of We Don't Need to Whisper)
  2. Love The Movie
  3. Poet Anderson Short Animated
  4. Making Of Dream Walker

Music Videos

blink-182
  1. M&M's
  2. M&M's Alternative Version
  3. Dammit
  4. Josie
  5. Josie Alternative Version
  6. What's My Age Again?
  7. All The Small Things
  8. Adam's Song
  9. Man Overboard
  10. The Rock Show
  11. Anthem Part Two Live
  12. First Date
  13. Stay Together For The Kids
  14. Stay Together For The Kids Alternative Version
  15. Feeling This
  16. I Miss You
  17. Down
  18. Always
  19. Stockholm Syndrome
  20. Violence
  21. Not Now
  22. Up All Night
  23. Heart's All Gone
  24. Wishing Well
  25. After Midnight
  26. Bored To Death
  27. She's Out Of Her Mind
  28. Home Is Such A Lonely Place
  29. Generational Divide
  30. Darkside
  31. Not Another Christmas Song
  32. Happy Days
  33. Quarantine
  34. Edging
Box Car Racer
  1. I Feel So
  2. There Is
(+44)
  1. When Your Heart Stops Beating
  2. Chapter 13
  3. 155
Angels & Airwaves
  1. The Adventure
  2. The Adventure Short Film
  3. It Hurts Short Film
  4. Do It For Me Now
  5. The War Short Film
  6. The Gift Short Film
  7. Everything's Magic
  8. Everything's Magic Alternative
  9. Secret Crowds
  10. Breathe
  11. Hallucinations
  12. Anxiety
  13. Surrender
  14. Soul Survivor from LOVE
  15. Clever Love from LOVE
  16. Epic Holiday from LOVE
  17. Hallucinations from LOVE
  18. Diary
  19. The Wolfpack
  20. Tunnels
  21. Rebel Girl
  22. Kiss & Tell
  23. All That's Left Is Love
  24. Paper Thin
  25. Euphoria
  26. Losing My Mind
  27. Spellbound
Simple Creatures
  1. One Little Lie
  2. Thanks, I Hate It
  3. Special
  4. Adrenaline
  5. Strange Love
  6. Drug

Promotional Videos and Other stuff - Album previews, and commercials etc.
  1. 1998 Commercial
  2. Take Off Your Pants And Jacket Promotional Video
  3. Reunion 2009 Promo
  4. 2011 Tour Promotion
  5. HTC Status Commercial
  6. Dogs Eating Dogs Promo
  7. blink-182 are coming!
  8. LOTS of other videos and audios can be find here Blink182Media3 and MLG182 and Blink182Italia!

40 000 characters limit reached
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2023.05.31 07:32 Yestogaming82 Trading everything here:

Trading everything here:
Comment or personal message me to do the trade!
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2023.05.31 07:27 linkelek1 Ukrajnai háború, szerda reggel

-már azért is letartóztatnak valakit oroszországban, mert az orosz légierő zászlaját viszi magával , ugyanis az is kék-sárga -UK külügy Ukrajnának joga van megvédenie magát -ukrán kommandósegység, ami a Dnipron keresztül akciózik -fel nem robbant lövedék fába szorulva -ukrán tankok támadnak Bakhmut környékén 48.51505, 37.89879 -oroszország a NATO-val való háborúzásra is készül -elemzés: hogy próbálják meg ukrán anyák visszaszerezni az oroszországba deportált gyerekeiket -a gasprom magánhadseregét is Ukrajnába vezényelték -elemzés: professzor Koffman: WotR a háború jelenlegi helyzete

oroszországban dróntámadások

-olajfinomító Afipsky oil refinery in southern Russia, -tegnap reggel moszkva -csendes drón moszka felett canard szárnykonfigurációja van, ez ritka -egy toronyházon látszanak korom nyomok -pantsir légvédelem működik valahol oroszországban -repülő drón

fegyverrendszerek

-ukrán MT-LB rászerelt 100mm-es MT-12 Rapira tankellenes löveggel

friss térképek

-teljes front nincs változás

Veszteségek

-orosz veszteségek kedd , 410 troop losses, 7-day troop average: 440, Equipment losses: $176M, 27 landbased losses, 7-day average: 40 -orosz veszteségek pénzügyi statisztikái $1.6B in the last 30 days, $176M reported today -orosz katona önmagát gránátozza le , talán öngyilkosság -stugna-P találat -stugna-p találat vuhledárnál -az első fotó egy megsemmisült S-400-as parancsnoki egységről -a mult heti Yaricka elleni Storm Shadow támadás eredménye -orosz BMP kap találatot -állatkórházat rakétázott le az orosz hadsereg Dniproban -orosz veszteségek szerda

ISW

RUSSIAN OFFENSIVE CAMPAIGN ASSESSMENT, MAY 30, 2023 Russia claimed that Ukraine conducted a series of drone strikes against Moscow on May 30 as Russia again targeted Ukraine with Iranian-made Shahed drones. Russian President Vladimir Putin attempted to downplay the drone attack on Moscow to avoid exposing the limited options he has to retaliate against Ukraine. The drone attack on Moscow generated varied responses from the Russian information space. The Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) is likely attempting to conceal the high Russian losses in Ukraine by artificially inflating Ukrainian casualties in the war. EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell stated that Russia will not enter negotiations while trying to win the war. Russian forces conducted limited ground attacks northeast of Kupyansk and northwest of Svatove, and Russian sources claimed that Russian forces conducted a ground attack south of Kreminna. The tempo of Russian and Ukrainian offensive operations in the Bakhmut direction remains low as of May 30. Russian forces made marginal advances amid continued ground attacks on the Avdiivka-Donetsk City line. Russian forces did not conduct any confirmed ground attacks along the southern axis. Russian officials are establishing domestic veteran support programs which likely aim to advertise the perks of military service in Russia. Russian occupation officials continue to deport Ukrainian children to Russia under the guise of providing pediatric healthcare.

Vége

kedd reggel
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2023.05.31 07:10 Seamoose_Art NoP 2177: All the Madmen [4]

Credit for the original story goes to u/spacepaladin15, as well as my personal gratitude for allowing fanfiction and supporting this community. As always, all critique is appreciated.
[First] [Previous] [Next]
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Memory transcript subject: James Hall, Human civilian
Date [Standardized Human Time]: February 29th, 2177
Location: Lower sprawl of City 23, Venlil Prime
Venlil Prime lacked a day-night cycle, and while the planetary wobble provided some ebb and flow of light, it was hardly a pattern that the human body could work with. Not that it mattered much either way; James’ room was subterranean and windowless. In lieu of the rhythm that a daylight cycle provided, Burai had rigged him up a sun lamp that dimmed and brightened on a schedule along with some ambient noise that waxed and waned in intensity and texture. Supposedly, it was a real recording from Earth. A nice enough sound, rustling trees and grass and a soft screech from some bug that James couldn’t remember the name of. Tonight, it was doing little to sooth his spirit.
Although the day-night cycle was artificial, the annoyance of waking up early but not early enough to fall back asleep was very much real.
He stumbled out of bed, eyes foggy and head pounding. There wasn’t enough time for him to fall back asleep before things got going, but the sleep he’d already got was hardly enough to wake up feeling well-rested. Exhausted, infuriated, and slightly dizzy from getting up before his body was ready; it didn’t exactly bode well for the day ahead. Perhaps he should just sit this one out…
He shook his head as though the motion would dislodge the thought from his brain, and cast a bleary gaze around the room for something to do in the interim. There was a sketchbook in the corner, but he’d lost all motivation to draw since getting fired/evicted and having to move here full time. Same for the keyboard on his desk. A handful of weeks was plenty for them to both be covered in a thick layer of dust. As opposed to the rest of the room, which was covered in only a thin layer of dust. God, he’d really been letting himself slip.
He hoped the upcoming excursion would lift his spirits. Going out and doing something with everyone else, even something this stupid, could help pull him out of the lethargic self-isolating spiral he’d slipped into. Why the rest of them weren’t put off by the idea of gallivanting about the heart of the city, he couldn’t even begin to guess.
Tressa especially. When he’d heard what the mission would entail, he immediately stated the obvious. It was a suicidal idea. And then… what, he just forgot? He wasn’t the type to throw himself into danger for the thrill, always preferring to hang back and figure things out from afar when he could. This wasn’t like him at all. Then again, he hadn’t been acting like himself for a while now. Normally, he was constantly in contact, but he’d completely stopped coming to the Den ever since…
Well, ever since James’ run in with one of those jackbooted flamethrower thugs. But that was his problem. His reason for being reclusive and not taking care of himself, and his alone. Why would Tressa be affected? Was his pathetic moping just that unbearable to be around?
His musings were cut off by the screeching of a morning alarm. A lovely melodic noise, which signaled that he could go make breakfast without worrying about waking everyone else up. He wouldn’t have time for anything too fancy, but even a simple meal would be something he could do for everyone, help him feel as though he was contributing and not just leeching off their generosity. He could do that much, at least.

Memory transcript subject: Sasha Everett, ex-UN noncombatant
Date [Standardized Human Time]: February 29th, 2177
Location: Lower sprawl of City 23, Venlil Prime
“Know thy enemy and know thyself, and you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.”
Sasha never actually cared for The Art of War, initially reading it out of social pressure rather than any personal curiosity. Nevertheless, some quotes had embedded themselves in her brain so deeply that nothing short of lobotomy could dislodge them. She’d read it cover to cover over the course of that last winter, the last winter anyone would enjoy on Earth. The last days anyone could experience the rich history and vibrant nature in person, and she spent them holed up and bored out of her mind reading a book she didn’t care about. The UN dragged her out to Venlil Prime only days before the Federation’s invasion there; at the time, she thought herself cosmically unlucky.
They’d gouged deep scars into the Venlil’s home, but at least the Venlil still had a home. A home that Sasha was fairly unfamiliar with, despite living there for the majority of her life. Oh sure, she’d crawled around the bombed-out old cities plenty. Developed brave new forms of ash-induced cancer for which the price of medical treatment had barely dropped in time. But the heart of Venlil Prime, the shiny new neon cities and reconstructed sectors where money and culture flowed, were still a distant mystery for her.
She knew herself plenty well, in no small part due to the whole group that Burai had drawn like a magnet. They’d become a bedrock upon which she could rebuild her sense of self, something not defined by the flames of the past. She could confidently consider herself an artist now; her, a student who slept through every school art class like it was a free period. That observant eye for detail now actively hunted for beauty. There was beauty to be found, growing between the ruins of the old world and sprouting around the scars.
But her “enemy”, the new world which she held at arm's length? She didn’t know a thing about it. Was peeking her head up now really a good time? No. God no. But if she could push herself to go out there now, later would seem easy by comparison. And she would have company, people who she knew would have her back without a second thought.
Why they were so eager to go, she couldn’t hardly imagine.

Memory transcript subject: Burai, Gojid business owner
Date [Standardized Human Time]: February 29th, 2177
Location: Lower sprawl of City 23, Venlil Prime
While the rest of the group was downstairs getting some much-needed rest, Burai was tackling a patch of grime on the tile floor with all the ferocity and vigour of a dead rat. He could recognize that the work needed to be done, but he couldn’t motivate his body to do more than the bare minimum of moving the mop across the floor in a listless motion which seemed to only spread the stain further afield.
A sleeping schedule inverse to James’ ensured at least one of them had an eye on things at all times. It wasn’t all that necessary; exterminators rarely patrolled much of the lower sprawl, writing off the entire old city below as a lost cause due to the high concentration of humans and other cured species. A random bar in a ruined arm of the ruined city wasn’t exactly top of the priority list for an unannounced sweep. But James slept better for the security, so here Burai stood, considering whether another cup of black tea might push him into organ failure.
Deciding against it, he got back to his Sisyphean punishment with renewed fatigue. His thoughts began to wander as he set about his hopeless busywork, briefly touching on jobs he’d worked and close calls he’d had and a large variety of quiet nights just like this one which flowed together into one unpleasant experiential sludge. Or… no, that was actual sludge. Somehow, the grime on the floor had mixed with the cleaning fluid to form a sort of miserable goop which he was smearing over the floor with the mop like a layer of butter on bread.
The sweet, cruel voice of temptation spoke through his ear, whispering that if he put the mop down and accepted the hopeless cleaning situation for what it clearly was, he might be able to get a bit of rest before leaving. In his mentally weakened state, he was in no position to disagree. His last shreds of self-control whispered through the other ear that he still had a job to do, a final check-up on Beast before they left tomorrow. The idea of calling it quits on the cleaning was left uncontested.

Beast, as it was rather affectionately known, was an ancient shipping vehicle. Sort of. Humans knew the conundrum as the “Ship of Theseus”: if you replace every board of a ship over years, is it still the same ship? At this point, Beast could be considered a largely brand-new replica rather than a vintage relic. Even the outer panels were new, only made to look like they’d been left out in the elements for the better part of a century. The battered truck that Burai had gone to such lengths to drag to Venlil Prime was arguably long gone.
One vital feature remained. Or rather, the lack of a feature: no autonomous driving meant no automatic tracking. Ancient wrecks ferrying supplies around the city were ubiquitous; no one would bother tracking the thing manually. Without auto tracking, it was effectively a ghost. A loud, slow ghost that drank fuel like water.
Tire pressure was good. Fuel was still full, no leaks like last time. Burai failed to suppress a shutter as he imagined trying to fix it again on such a tight schedule. Coolant was fine, the dash console didn’t light up with complaints. All looked clear. He gave the hood a light pet, as though rewarding it for good behavior. He might’ve even muttered something reassuring to Beast, after giving a quick glance to make sure the rest of the crew weren’t up early and staring at him.

Memory transcript subject: Trish, Venlil civilian
Date [Standardized Human Time]: February 29th, 2177
Location: Lower sprawl of City 23, Venlil Prime
Burai put on the face of a dignified, kindly old Gojid. It was a convincing ruse, so convincing that even he himself was pulled in by it. He had that sort of gift; he could convince anyone of anything. But there was no convincing security cameras not to talk. Trish, ever the tech whisperer, had taken a peek through his poorly-secured security subsystems. What she’d found was another side of Burai, something he never showed to even his closest friends.
When he was sure no one was around, he pet his truck. Literally, gently running his claws down the side. It was hard to tell through the low-quality footage, but he might’ve even been talking to it. Like how humans sometimes talked to Dossur and Venlil when they forgot to control themselves, letting their voice shift to a high, musical tone.
Trish knew not to spread the word, of course. It’d be a cruel social blow to inflict on anyone, much less Burai. He didn’t deserve such brutal slander. Nevertheless, it was somewhat comforting to know that even her most trustworthy allies had things to hide about themselves, little quirks they didn’t want other people to see.

Memory transcript subject: Tressa, Venlil civilian
Date [Standardized Human Time]: February 29th, 2177
Location: Lower sprawl of City 23, Venlil Prime
Before he fell asleep, Tressa decided to clean and check his pistol so he wouldn’t have to do it in the morning while still groggy. Some instinct in the back of his mind told him that if he didn’t do the maintenance now, he wouldn’t get the chance again. It was the right call.
By the time he managed to pry himself from his bed and stumble out into the living room, the “smell” of cooking permeated the air thick enough that he could taste it just by breathing. James was already rushing in and out of the kitchen. Sasha was packing something into a shoulder bag. Trish was curled up on the couch, stone-cold body language failing to hide a mischievous glint in her eyes. All three pairs of eyes fell on him as he walked in, a silent signal that they’d been waiting on his arrival for some time. As if to hammer the point home, Burai took the moment as his cue to appear at the top of the stairwell.
“Hey, everything’s ready on my end. Tressa up yet?”
---
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submitted by Seamoose_Art to NatureofPredators [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 06:05 throwawaylikemylifee Needs encouragement - 1 month in

I've had it for a month now, slowly spreading on my torso, chest, arms, and some part of my legs. Most of the initial rashes has healed and are now flat and brown. I thought that was the end. BUT just these past days I noticed that it started again more aggressively going down the rest of my arms and legs all the way to my hands and feet! Being a rash in a Christmas tree pattern, should I hope that it will end soon now that it's reaching towards my extremities?
Also, I heard that I should get some sun exposure, which I do as where I live is extremely hot right now anyway. However, the hot weather makes it also feel stingy so I'm conflicted whether I should continue with the sun or not. I just want this to end, I'm so shy every day at work!
submitted by throwawaylikemylifee to PityriasisRosea [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 06:01 LittleMissRo My Dear Family

Author: Little Miss Ro
It started at a very cold night at December....and there was a beautiful girl called Lily. Lily was a bright and cheerful girl whom everyone loved. But few do not know much about Lily....not even her own family. One day, when Lily and her mother was preparing for Christmas Lily asked her mother "Mother, are we going to visit Grandma and Grandpa for Christmas?"Lily asked politely as she put the ornaments in the Christmas tree* "Yes, Dear" Lily's mom answered....Lily's last wish was to spend time with her grandparents, especially this Christmas. Few days have passed and it's already Christmas, Lily and her family were driving into Grandpa and Grandma's house, Everyone was excited as they have not seen Grandma and Grandpa for quite a long time. As soon as Lily and her family arrived into Grandma and Grandpa's House, Lily hugged Grandma and Grandpa Tight, as they smiled at her with joy. " Grandma, Grandpa I've missed you guys so much!!" Lily said, as she Hugged them tight, "I missed you too, my Sweet little bee" Grandma answered, Grandpa giggled as he got up "Come Lily, I made your favorite pumpkin pie" Grandpa said, as he smiles at her. Lily was sitting down as she asked grandma if she can borrow a paper and a pencil, Grandma asked "What do you need it for my Sweet little bee?" She asked with confusion "You'll see, just open this paper once the right time has come..." Lily answered, "laughs Okay" Grandma answered with joy. It was midnight and it was already time for Lily and her family to go home. "I'll miss you guys so much!! I can't believe it's already time for us to go home..." Lily said sadly...."It's okay, my sweet little bee" Grandma said to her while smiling, "That's right, come again another time Lily" Grandpa jumped in into the conversation while smiling, "Here's the note I wanna give to you both, Please keep it safe..and DON'T open it unless you guys have to" Lily said seriously. "Giggles okay, okay we'll take care of it" Grandpa said joyfully. Lily and her family took off and went home. The next day while grandma was watering the garden, she heard a sound coming from the house. Grandma walks in as she saw Grandpa crying sorrowfully in the floor "What's wrong?!?!" Grandma said in shocked as she touched grandpa in the shoulders...."It's Lily...Sh- she died" Grandpa replied as he cried nonstop..."What?!?!" Grandma shouted in confusion, "Her mother told me that she disappeared last night, and the police found her body in a bridge...the police think that it might be suicide or murder, it's not confirmed yet..." Grandpa replied..."Grandma Cried as she fell to her knees Th-that can't be.." Grandma ran upstairs, as she finds the note that Lily gave her "sigh here it is" Grandma said as tears fall down her eyes...Grandma opened the letter Read the letter slowly..."Mom, Dad, Sister, Brother, Grandma and Grandpa, Thank you for always being there for me...But I think it's time for me to go, I always feel like I'm not good enough for this family...and I always feel so useless and that no one loves me, Everyone sorry being such a burden to all of you....I just want you guys to have a good life and not waste your time on someone like me, that's why I'm planning to run away this midnight to free myself from this pain that I have always felt my whole life....So, I guess this is good bye...thanks for always being there for me everyone. To: My dear family....from: Lily"
••••••••••••••••••••••end•••••••••••••••••••••••
A little Story that I made<3
submitted by LittleMissRo to stories [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 05:00 LittleMissRo My Dear Family

Author: Little Miss Ro
It started at a very cold night at December....and there was a beautiful girl called Lily. Lily was a bright and cheerful girl whom everyone loved. But few do not know much about Lily....not even her own family. One day, when Lily and her mother was preparing for Christmas Lily asked her mother "Mother, are we going to visit Grandma and Grandpa for Christmas?"Lily asked politely as she put the ornaments in the Christmas tree* "Yes, Dear" Lily's mom answered....Lily's last wish was to spend time with her grandparents, especially this Christmas. Few days have passed and it's already Christmas, Lily and her family were driving into Grandpa and Grandma's house, Everyone was excited as they have not seen Grandma and Grandpa for quite a long time. As soon as Lily and her family arrived into Grandma and Grandpa's House, Lily hugged Grandma and Grandpa Tight, as they smiled at her with joy. " Grandma, Grandpa I've missed you guys so much!!" Lily said, as she Hugged them tight, "I missed you too, my Sweet little bee" Grandma answered, Grandpa giggled as he got up "Come Lily, I made your favorite pumpkin pie" Grandpa said, as he smiles at her. Lily was sitting down as she asked grandma if she can borrow a paper and a pencil, Grandma asked "What do you need it for my Sweet little bee?" She asked with confusion "You'll see, just open this paper once the right time has come..." Lily answered, "laughs Okay" Grandma answered with joy. It was midnight and it was already time for Lily and her family to go home. "I'll miss you guys so much!! I can't believe it's already time for us to go home..." Lily said sadly...."It's okay, my sweet little bee" Grandma said to her while smiling, "That's right, come again another time Lily" Grandpa jumped in into the conversation while smiling, "Here's the note I wanna give to you both, Please keep it safe..and DON'T open it unless you guys have to" Lily said seriously. "Giggles okay, okay we'll take care of it" Grandpa said joyfully. Lily and her family took off and went home. The next day while grandma was watering the garden, she heard a sound coming from the house. Grandma walks in as she saw Grandpa crying sorrowfully in the floor "What's wrong?!?!" Grandma said in shocked as she touched grandpa in the shoulders...."It's Lily...Sh- she died" Grandpa replied as he cried nonstop..."What?!?!" Grandma shouted in confusion, "Her mother told me that she disappeared last night, and the police found her body in a bridge...the police think that it might be suicide or murder, it's not confirmed yet..." Grandpa replied..."Grandma Cried as she fell to her knees Th-that can't be.." Grandma ran upstairs, as she finds the note that Lily gave her "sigh here it is" Grandma said as tears fall down her eyes...Grandma opened the letter Read the letter slowly..."Mom, Dad, Sister, Brother, Grandma and Grandpa, Thank you for always being there for me...But I think it's time for me to go, I always feel like I'm not good enough for this family...and I always feel so useless and that no one loves me, Everyone sorry being such a burden to all of you....I just want you guys to have a good life and not waste your time on someone like me, that's why I'm planning to run away this midnight to free myself from this pain that I have always felt my whole life....So, I guess this is good bye...thanks for always being there for me everyone. To: My dear family....from: Lily"
••••••••••••••••••••••end•••••••••••••••••••••••
A little Story that I made<3
submitted by LittleMissRo to u/LittleMissRo [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 03:31 mustycalzone559 [xbox][H]a bunch of rlcs items and og decals and cool sets[W] credit offers

Pls read all. I have alot of og and seasonal rare decals. Rlcs items. Old rocket pass. Very rare wheels . And a bunch of other stuff.
If thers anything u need but dont see comment and ill see if i have it. Theres way to much to type out
Tw and grey pyramids
Tw aether
Og Black island king
Fg grey crim saff bs orange big splash
150 unpainted big splash
fg breakout nice shot
Every unpainted rlcs item in the game
Emerald set
stego set
cert halo set
og oct vaporwave set
Og half of oct christmas tree set
8 og oct gale fire “Some cert”
2 dom afterlife
tons of pcc lone wolfs
A few other pcc items and bluprints for trade ups
Half of the vr stern set. Including black
a bunch of painted vr wheels
and tons of other og and seasonal crate rare decals and very rare wheels
A shit ton of old rocket pass items including gripstrides,troblemakers,ved avas. And much more
submitted by mustycalzone559 to RocketLeagueExchange [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 02:49 ucdgn Was anyone else constantly punished so harshly?

Every time I did something even the slightest bit bad, I’d get very harshly punished, usually by beatings. I’ve been over 6 foot tall since I was 11-12 but because I was so skinny, I couldn’t fight back.
Reasons they beat me:
Sighing
Crying (not necessarily for being male, they only thought it was annoying, but society made it worse)
Sitting on the couch (I couldn’t unless I was sick and asked to or got told I can)
Eating (As you know, my nmum had me on a very strict diet and gave me anorexia, which I’ve had since I was 10 and I’m 38 now. And I was always skinny even before I was forced to diet at age 10, but she just wanted to harm me.)
No reason
Literally anything
So yes, they ALWAYS pulled down my pants (including underwear), or even took them off, or got me completely naked. EVERY SINGLE TIME, it was on my bare ass. Even in public, they’d just pull them down a little in the back. And in fact, when my dad took me to the public men’s bathroom and I “misbehaved”, he’d again pull my pants/all my clothes down or off.
They usually didn’t do it in front of people, except a few times when they did and wanted to humiliate me, they took me to whatever room was empty. In fact we had a “spanking room” - that wasn’t its purpose but it’s what I associate it with. It was a room of the house that literally had no furniture in it at all so my parents (but not I) just stored random crap in there, since we didn’t have an attic nor a basement.
They tended to use a belt - NEVER an open hand, EVER - or anything else they could use as a weapon, or they’d take me outside naked and make me cut a switch from a tree. Then they would go and beat me with it. If I didn’t cry, they hit me extremely extremely hard, I’m so fortunate that I never broke any bones from that - if I cried, they also hit me very hard. And would also slap me until I got dizzy and if I wasn’t passed out from all of that violence, then they kept going, even if it took hours.
I (38) was the only one of my siblings who got spanked. My GC sister (34) did have a physical fight with my mum over her boyfriend calling my mum weird but it’s different, they used their bare hands and attacked each other. My GC brother (36) did get punished alongside me once but he still got off lighter than I did.
I’m 38, but I still live with my dad because I’m poor and I’d be homeless if I didn’t. He still threatens to beat me but he doesn’t.
My parents, especially my dad, also liked to give me weird punishments. Like (non-exhaustive)
Having to clean the kitchen with my toothbrush and then clean my teeth with that very toothbrush and some cream that wasn’t toothpaste. For pulling out my sister’s loose tooth which she literally ASKED ME TO DO FOR HER.
Having to smash “my” PS1 because I got detention at school. For something I didn’t do but got falsely accused of. Fuck I never even owned a PS1, it was my neighbour’s property but he let me use it all the time and even keep it at my house, but it was his. Yes, he was understanding.
Having to pee naked into the urinal and then fucking lick it up?! Because I went to a stall to pee, because I wasn’t gonna be 12 standing with my dick out next to a bunch of grown ass men.
Having my head shaved bald by my dad because I played with the very little hair I did have (I had a buzzcut and was fidgeting with the part at the very back bottom), oh and he didn’t even shave my head the right way. Then I had to clean up the hair.
Getting locked outside overnight for eating more than my calory limit. It was meant to be overnight but they did let me inside later because it rained heavily which wasn’t on the forecast. (This was back when you couldn’t look it up on a cellphone, you had to watch the news)
When I was getting my head shaved in public, I got some bad cuts from the razor and my head started to bleed quite heavily. It stained up the back of the chair and even a little onto the floor behind me. My dad made me wipe the chair down, while my head was still bleeding so it took hours to do, then he made me write an apology letter for it which was beyond my control.
I got into a fight with my brother over playing on the PS2 (I got mine on UK launch day, he got his that Christmas, and this happened inbetween then) and my dad just sent us to bed and made us sleep NAKED in the SAME BED together. Then when we got up the next day, he treated us like literal babies. Like, diapers (as our only outfit), baby food, and all that stuff. He also shaved our heads so we’d look more baby-like. He even dropped us off at a nursery, which was so embarrassing. I was 15, over 6 foot, and sat there like THAT. Then, when I got home, he beat me in front of my brother who just laughed, and I was grounded from my PS2 until my birthday (16th December) while my brother could play it whenever he wanted until then.
Jfc no wonder I’m so fucked up
submitted by ucdgn to raisedbynarcissists [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 02:48 CyberpunkEnthusiast Wanting to establish a workout routine but worried about psyching myself out and previous injuries - unsure of options

Hello beginnerfitness!
So I've been bit by the "get in shape" bug again, and like other times I just can't seem to find a workout that works for me. I've tried going to the gym and using the machines, free weights, kettlebell, bodyweight/Charles Bronson methods, isometrics - yet it always seems like I have this little mental hangup where a little voice in my mind goes: "You're wasting your time. You'll never get [insert desired physique feature here]. You'll just aggravate an old injury."
Speaking of injuries, I've been through the mill. While I want to strengthen those areas to prevent further injury, I don't want to aggravate anything. All of these injuries are more than 5+ years ago now, and are healed completely, but I don't want to put myself in a situation that'll prevent me from continuing my workout - such as my herniated back discs lighting up my lower back like a Christmas tree the last time I used my 25-pound kettlebell. I like the idea of kettlebells since it's a tangible thing, and looking back I probably started off too heavy and too intense.
So, TL;DR - what options are out there for relatively low impact schools of thought/workouts for someone who wants to get toned in the upper body but is concerned about mental hangups and not wanting to risk aggravating previous injuries? My long term goal is to have a body similar to Bruce Lee's - functional, toned, and fine tuned. Thank you!
submitted by CyberpunkEnthusiast to beginnerfitness [link] [comments]


2023.05.31 01:51 Storms_Wrath The Human Artificial Hivemind Part 377: Artificial Apocalypse

First Previous Wiki
"I should not let you enter," the old man said, gazing unhappily at Phoebe standing beside Penny in her dream.
"Please. You're mind controlling her, so I think you would have stopped me if you wanted to,"
Phoebe replied.
"Not control. Humans don't 'control' the air, they breathe it. In the same way, I feed on Penny's psychic energy."
"I see. And when you said you had infinite power, what exactly did you mean?"
"I do. But my power is dead," Death said. "That is how I am."
"And you can exist in the psychic realm, but not the regular mindscape?"
"Sometimes."
"What defines those times?"
"It depends. People dying, obviously. About a quarter of all deaths in the galaxy aren't Sprilnav."
"A quarter?"
"Yes."
"So I assume they're killing themselves."
"Yes."
"And that energy isn't a constant influx?"
"Somewhat. It comes in both a trickle and waves. But I know you're going to ask more. The answer is that the Progenitors give conceptual protection to the Sprilnav. The further away a Sprilnav is from them in space, time, and more, the weaker they are. That is why Elders can survive impacts that could vaporize metal, not just their implants and psychic energy."
"Conceptual weight seems to feature heavily in your power," Phoebe said.
"It does."
"And you are a concept. If you fought Fate, for example, would you win?"
"Depending on what you mean by winning. Really, concepts cannot overcome each other."
Phoebe smiled. That meant that Death would want a way to do that. Probably the hivemind was the way. With that answer, she continued.
"Concepts cannot overcome each other? So you don't have a fate, and Fate can't die?"
"Not really."
"Can you die?"
"No."
"Does Fate have a fate?"
"I don't know. But really, there's no way I'll tell you that even if I find out."
"How many people have died?" Phoebe asked.
"Define people, and define death."
"People as in sentient and sapient beings, which are capable of thought and planning. Death as in the ceasing of characteristics of life such as the termination of blood or gaseous material within the living being, as well as the ceasing of psychic energy and brain activity within the being, for those that have some equivalent to brains."
"It is not specific. Quintillions, at least. A lot more, really. There's many that don't quite fit the condition. If you count the moments before the great war, you'd need exponents."
"We have numbers for that."
"Okay. Sprilnav deaths alone, even with the conceptual madness of the... what do they call it? The Source war. Yes. It's quite a lot," Death said.
"Give me a number, please."
"Fine. 39 undecillion."
Phoebe was silent. There were so many Sprilnav that it was stupid. Even thinking about the level of that fall was truly insane. And she assumed that during the fall, they had a very bad time. It would have been madness and anarchy with the added characteristic that everyone also had nukes and shields.
"There's more than the observable universe, you know."
"How many died in the aftermath of the Source war?"
Death frowned. "The numbers in terms of those who had already survived the war, but not the fall of civilization, are as follows. 1 in 30,000 Elders lived. 1 in 850,000 regular Sprilnav lived. Of those, 875 Sprilnav didn't end their lives."
"875 thousand? Million?"
"No. 875 normal Sprilnav, who were not Elders."
Phoebe thought that was sad. Basically, in the whole galaxy, every Sprilnav had died, at least statistically. The number alive right now, even still outnumbering the galaxy, was a rounding error. If what he said was true, the Source had killed more people than any other being, alive or dead. And that assumed there weren't any other civilizations of a similar scale to them.
She also didn't bother to ask how the Sprilnav population was now so large. Whether it was inbreeding or cloning didn't matter much. But it helped to explain why so many Elders were so crazy all the time. She needed to stay on task, however.
"Alright. Back to you. You're not a psychopomp?"
"No. I do not interfere with souls. I am the concept of death."
"So, do you get energy from stars blowing up?"
"That is not dying."
"But people believe that supernovae are the deaths of stars."
"That does not shift the concept itself."
That was interesting. So Death wasn't a belief harvester, then. Not the type that actually was shaped by the belief of sapient beings in their actions. Concepts existed and were finite and infinite in scope. Maybe some were truly finite. They could conflict with each other, and their influence would generate a weakening effect, like destructive interference with alternate types of waves. But that did not mean that was always so. Perhaps they could do the opposite.
It was likely that Death worked with Fate at least sometimes and that if Entropy existed, it was most concerned with the Sprilnav. Conceptual protection by the Progenitors was another interesting concept that she hoped to probe if Nova ever returned. She did have the feeling he was either doing everything for fun or entirely serious. He was certainly not quite there in the head after the experience that Death had shared with her.
But for conceptual beings like him, there were rules and regulations, perhaps bound by whatever absolute concept they fit within. Whether they were hard rules or not was unknown. Defined in their structure, but not their limits. And perhaps that meant there was more to figure out here."Interesting. And if you need to feed off psychic energy, why not use psychic amplifiers?"
"It's not the same quality. Humans don't drink pure water only; they drink it for the minerals and other healthy products within it. It's the same for me."
"But you can't die. Why would it matter?"
"I can diminish. It would affect things, though not as you expect."
"That is interesting also," Phoebe replied. "Are you suggesting that you could diminish, which means other concepts can as well?"
"Not directly," Death nodded with a smile. He stumbled, clutching his head. Phoebe felt a vast energy press down upon them and could feel something brush against her mind like a bullet just grazing the skin. In that one motion, she'd felt more inherent danger than all previous enemies combined, so much danger that it bypassed her artificial instincts entirely to lay thickly on her tongue as an acrid taste.
She didn't fall to the ground, and neither did Penny. They stood there, searching for the source of the pressure.
"What is this?" she asked.
"Luck..."
"Luck is a concept that watches over others?"
A swirling vortex opened up around Phoebe, parallel to the ground. Light and other equivalents shone out of it, dancing around its interior, piercing the layers of dark black fog. The mindscape trembled slightly, and the ground underneath Penny and Phoebe cracked. A small voice whispered out of it, though it was easily audible.
"No more."
"Look, if you're really Luck, then-"
"No more," the voice repeated. "You are done here. Do not come back."
Phoebe snorted. "If you think this little mysterious act is going to intimidate me, you're wrong. And I will."
"Not today."
"You don't get to decide-"
"I decide all."
Phoebe's head seemed to split with pain, and she found herself lying dizzily next to Penny. The human's chest was heaving, and sweat laced her eyebrows and cheeks.
"That went well," Phoebe coughed. The headache receded far too slowly. But she'd still learned a lot. Conceptual beings had concerns, for one. They likely cared about getting stronger in some cases. Humanity had some sort of outside context power, but more than that, the hivemind itself could actually use it.
"It did. Thanks, and sorry you couldn't get more."
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"Hello, Rank 10 Ambassador Liinara. To what do we owe the pleasure?" Ambassador Varirlar asked, letting a small smile curve around her snout. Putting the other party at ease would make this conversation easier, especially since she suspected this call wasn't just a concerned friend.
"You might want to sit down for this," her counterpart said. "Remember Exii'darii?"
Varirlar froze.
"Don't tell me you let her free."
"We didn't. The Sprilnav broke her out."
"Elders?"
"Not that we saw. But it is likely they are working for one," Liinara said, her antennae twitching. Varirlar knew there was a pheromone effect that went on with the Vinarii, which still couldn't be fully translated into description by words.
"Alright. You know how serious this is, I assume?"
"Yes."
"Many factions in the Alliance, especially the more recently joined ones, will not be happy."
"We understand."
"I can speak on behalf of the Alliance in asking a request for an official apology. Furthermore," Varirlar said, holding up a single claw, "I want your government to share the full containment procedure down to the alloy composition of the materials. Assuming you actually kept her in a prison cell for over a decade, that meant you had a way to keep her from escaping. Tell us how."
"You wish to recapture her?"
"We are not as naive as we once were," Varirlar said. "The Hateful Galaxy has taught the rest of the Alliance the same hard lessons it taught me. The Breyyanik did not forget its nature when we settled Ceres."
"Ah, so you wish to either use her or kill her."
"There is no use for her," Varirlar said. "Unless our scientists can propose a solution, there will be no use for her. She will be put down like the dog she is.""Then we are in agreement."
"Yes. The Alliance and the Vinarii's relationship has been tense for a while. We haven't spoken with Calanii or Ashnav'viinir in several years now. Why have you decided to diverge from us? Do we no longer suit your interests?"
"Not exactly. Even besides the... tumultuous events of Humanity's first contact, there are other powers at play. And there is evidence, in some cases, of Sprilnav interference." Liinara tapped her skull three times, the Vinarii way of saying that someone was a few branches short of a tree.
"Interference. Are there ways to prevent it?"
"Not officially. If you wish to discuss terms, I can set you up with one of our intelligence agencies. They will not be willing to share national secrets for nothing, however."
"I think this... debacle should count enough as recompense, don't you?" Varirlar smiled.
"Perhaps. But I am not who must be convinced. With that said, I wish you luck, Ambassador. I am glad that your Alliance has moved to take a more realistic path. And Ashnad'darii is still imprisoned, I presume?"
"Under much heavier guard once this call ends. But yes, she is still in a cell. Yes, she has implants. But she is leverage."
"Her usefulness is little," Liinara warned. "Calanii won't care at all about her."
"Everyone keeps saying that. But let's just say there are reasons she isn't dead."
"You should kill her."
"We should. We maybe could. Assuming that the official way is still trying to get an implant under her chitin to kill her instead of just launching her into the sun. Granted, that would kill her eventually."
"She is dangerous. Unable to be trusted."
"She was broken years ago," Varirlar said. "From what I've heard, she wears human-made clothes now instead of going naked. Plus, she has given us insights on Vinarii society, particularly involving its hierarchy."
"You're using her as a spy."
"A spy that hasn't seen a Vinarii face in almost twenty years? Pretty crappy at that job, I'd say. We both know that she killed hundreds of thousands personally, and was willing to kill many more. If she did not have her uses, she would have already been killed. Plus, there's a safety procedure in place."
"If you mean a bomb collar, good luck with that."
Varirlar didn't mean a collar. Psychic energy monitors were closely tied to a pair of fusion bombs that were embedded in her prison's walls. Should she get too far from the natural cell, they would explode. After all, the room had a bed, bathroom, sanitized entertainment, and a food and water delivery system. She was definitely mostly rehabilitated, but her crimes would follow her for the rest of her life. Their severity made her a case that would likely never fully rejoin any society unless it was an afterlife.
"Well. This has been productive," Varirlar replied with a smile. "But unfortunately,"
"Wait. I'm here to tell you something else, as well. The Dual Systems Trading Company wants to send more ships to your Sol system."
"How many more?"
"Umm, around 400."
"Why don't you have an exact number?"
"The negotiations are still underway. But they seek to bring Vinarii products to the internal Alliance markets, particularly the small Vinarii and larger Wisselen exclaves living within."
"They wouldn't be able to get you much money, unless it's in various Alliance cash forms. There's an angle, isn't there?"
"Well, yes. We don't know it yet. But it is suspicious."
Varirlar sighed. "Have you given them special brain scans?"
"What do you... oh. You suspect that?"
"Suspicious and spontaneous changes in their policy toward the Alliance, as we are suffering from issues with Sprilnav messing with people, and wanting to send us ships? I'm not stupid, Ambassador Liinara."
"I did not mean to insinuate-"
"Sure you didn't. Now, I shall tell you something very interesting. Are you ready?"
"Yes."
"Very well," Varirlar said dramatically, adjusting her mane as she leaned forward. "The hivemind would be willing to meet with your... incapacitated members for study from afar."
"What do you mean?"
"Intelligence."
"We cannot trust it."
"I see. You are aware that you have just called all of Humanity untrustworthy, right? That's quite the insult, unprovoked."
"Apologies, Ambassador, that is not what I meant. The hivemind is likely to have its own motivations, and could be motivated to lie about what it saw."
"As could your own operatives, who could be pinned to the floor by any regular Sprilnav and chipped within a minute. Don't act like they don't have legendary hacking abilities as well. None of your systems are safe."
"And the Alliance's are?"
"With both Edu'frec and Phoebe watching over them, then yes."
"Ah, so you still think that the Sprilnav don't use AI."
"Why would they? It would threaten their own sense of superiority. If they already used AI, everyone would have a chip when they were born. There would be no resistance, because eventually a logical mind would not tolerate the constant pushback."
"You are free to believe what you do. However, my thoughts do diverge. As for Phoebe, she did a disappearing act for a while, didn't she?"
"And?"
"She isn't exactly reliable either," Liinara replied.
"If you're drowning in the ocean, would you rather have an island that storms a little or nothing at all?""I fail to see how her situation compares to that analogy. It was a very serious problem, if I understand it."
"And what do you suggest, then? Constantly bring her down over it until she resents us and shoves her hands through our hearts? Phoebe's a person, Ambassador. An Alliance citizen, a Luna citizen, and even more importantly than that, a friend. It's quite hurtful that you are suggesting such, unless it is the official stance of the Vinarii government. I assure you, the mess with your company trying to invade us is not resolved, either. Words cannot heal what actions injured. If you want reconciliation, it would be best to take the first steps yourself. Do not tell the Alliance to alienate Phoebe just because she made a mistake."
"Your own intelligence agencies would do the same in many cases."
"I fail to see how her situation compares to that analogy," Varirlar sighed. "Phoebe is the single most useful asset that the Alliance has come across that is not a purely psychic entity such as the hivemind or Gaia, or some paragon of a species like Dilandekar or Penny."
"So she's an asset, and not a person?"
"Please, Liinara. In the world we live in, the galaxy we live in, everyone is both. Do not lie to yourself. However, the Alliance wishes to show its people a shred of respect so it does not drag them through the mud when they made a mistake. Even before that, rehabilitation was the goal of Humanity. Why else do you think that we have prisons instead of just a wall where the bad people stand in front of to be shot? If a starving mother stole something, that doesn't mean we chop off her hands. We get her the help she and her child needs, so they can rejoin Alliance society and raise us all higher."
"Your Alliance has not fixed poverty like it said, then."
"Kind of difficult when one of your species is at a near constant feudal civil war, and another had a third of its populace halfway through insurrection. I assume that the Vinarii Empire has no such problems, correct? And again, I remind you that you are supposed to represent its official position, not your own."
Varirlar suspected that the Ambassador here had something else going on, as well. Whether it was mind control, being paid to screw this up, or something else entirely, this wasn't how such a conversation was meant to go. She only was continuing it to see if Liinara slipped up on something interesting.
"My position is as a Rank 10 Ambassador. You would do well to respect that."
"Respecting positions instead of people does not make sense when the position is respectable and the people are not. You have insulted Phoebe, Humanity, and the Alliance with your words. Were I to relay them, you might see a more hostile stance to the Vinarii Empire. Remember that you have agreements with us."
"Yes. Times have changed."
"I am sure that the Hive Emperor would not exactly like to hear what you have said. But do not worry, Ambassador. We will learn the truth of your words soon enough, one way or another. That is all for now. Perhaps I will ask for a Rank 11 Ambassador next time, to save myself the insults."
She ended the call and sighed. Varirlar could spin the wheel of chance, but the two answers were likely either mind control or someone being paid off to harm relations between them. Given Liinara's expressions, she didn't assume it was translation errors to blame. And this call was on a secure line, even more so than most.
Really, the Vinarii could be doing it. But she smelled something was up. There was likely a very rich Vinarii who the Sprilnav had either made to work with them or forced to, using mind control. Perhaps it really was the answer to both. But she knew not to just assume that. When you had a hammer, everything looked like a nail. It was an apt human saying for the situation.
Varirlar contacted several officials after she wrote her report with the attached recording of the situation. She'd done her best to appear calm, though responding to Liinara was not the orthodox method. But this way, she'd drawn out a lot more on how she viewed the Alliance, giving them a window into whatever was happening, blurry and small though it may have been.
She didn't really think that Calanii would have condoned this. Indeed, she might have just had her last diplomatic call ever. Assuming, of course, that the Sprilnav hadn't managed to chip him, too. If they had, though, the Alliance's situation would get bad fast. Luckily they were already at war with Aphid. Everything was already mobilized, and extra listening satellites in deep space had been set up. The last time the Vinarii Royal Navy had come to visit Humanity, they had not been ready. Perhaps now they were.
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Phoebe stood on the surface of Mercury, just underneath the great mass of the Mercury-class gun that had been built there. The first one that is. Now there were two great behemoths above her head, rising hundreds of meters into the sky. Not that Mercury really had a sky. Maybe someday, that would change.
For now, though, what mattered was the task at hand. The guns were already checked and cleared for firing. A small misalignment had destroyed a Charon-class gun in the past, so they were taking no chances with this. Now, the massive laser would serve its purpose. And, of course, the results would be live streamed.
The planet itself was a world almost covered in machinery. The atmosphere was toxic, filled with aerosols and gaseous industrial waste. There were no detectable life signs on it, whether they were communications, psychic emissions, or even just patches of warmth away from machinery. No subterranean life either, of any kind. Not even microbes had been spared from Aphid's apparent purge, if they had ever existed on this rock at all.
And Aphid's signature station designs orbited it also, whipping around its poisoned atmosphere at several miles a second. That was a sign that everyone on the planet, if there had ever been any, was dead.
A stream of ships poured in and out, guarded by a vast military fleet. In the Sol system, the amplifiers were powering up, and Brey was starting to form the outside of the portals she'd use for the guns, one on each side of the planet, at the equator. Her analysis had determined the areas in which opposite strikes would do the most damage. Phoebe had ensured to check for subterranean activity using Gaia's matter senses.
That had revealed large underground development areas, where presumably more of Aphid's mechanical drones were going to be made. Brey finished forming the portal as Phoebe took a last look at the spires of Aphid's world, ready to see how they'd do when the lasers hit.
She moved the stealth ships around the planet, continuing to watch the shield. It wasn't at full power, likely because Aphid wasn't expecting an attack. She didn't have a presence here in the mindscape, either. She was using far dumber programs as proxies across the Q-comms connections so that he could not detect a hint of anything wrong.
Combined with the Alliance's stealth technology, it would allow for a total surprise attack. Brey finished building up the portals in front of the guns, and Phoebe couldn't help but notice how deep the portals looked. They didn't seem like a flat plane like usual but had a sort of three-dimensionality to them this time. Interesting.
"Fire!" Phoebe ordered. Brey's avatar, which was standing beside an android back on Earth, grinned.
The barrels of the guns glowed cherry red, and vibrations radiated out from their heavily reinforced bases. Even with the android's solar shades, the light was still incredibly bright. Just from underneath it, the temperature was reaching almost 300 degrees. Just as she'd calculated.
On the other side of the portal, things got interesting. Brey's portal was invisible, but the energy coming from it was anything but. It almost looked like Aphid's planet was being impaled through a pole of pure white light. That light slammed down onto the planet's surface in three seconds, passing through the atmosphere as if it wasn't even there. Gaia stood beside the portals in the Sol system, blueshifting the light as much as possible. Instead of visible light, most of the weapon's energy, at least on the other side, was gamma. It was enough radiation to kill anything on the planet, for sure. Or to fry any electronic systems, such as a resident AI's servers.
The pure power of the two guns released a constant molten shockwave of a mix of vaporized rock, metal, and most other materials rushing outward. Buildings were snapped like twigs, their ends going flying but never landing. The heat melted others, and earthquakes in some areas that hadn't yet been struck by the spreading destruction were rampant.
The planet didn't explode or anything. The military ships that were far enough away to remain working just moved away, activating shields that fizzled out due to the intense energy beyond them. That energy would have destroyed Phoebe's android had Brey not used the portal to shield them as well. And as for her observation ships, their stealth coatings were quickly fried.
But the reinforced hulls were made specifically to withstand the effects of this for as long as possible. Cities of metal, all empty except for countless billions of drones wandering their streets, were wiped away. And then the portals began moving, shining around the equator. The effects spread and repeated, with the seas of methane catching fire before they, too, were vaporized in the path of the Mercury-class guns.
The atmosphere was boiled and stripped off the planet within hours. Most of the factories and foundries in the city were turned to either molten slag, collapsed by giant earthquakes, or vanished entirely. The devastation in the equatorial region was total. There was nothing left in a solid band 1500 miles wide around the equator of the planet, save for the broken bases of destroyed skyscrapers.
Further out, the damage was from earthquakes, snapped power lines, and broken pipes, as well as rubble that had fallen onto transport roads and collapsed tunnels. Alone, perhaps the problems could have been dealt with. But not together.
"Just to be sure," Brey asked. "You don't need the remains, right?"
"No. I will make what I need, that way I know it is safe," Phoebe replied, looking at Brey's avatar. It had the signature black fur of her empowered form, with red eyes and sharpened claws. The armor looked cool, as well.
"Alright. I'm going to go dump a few billion tons of plasma on it, then."
Phoebe smiled. "Alright. Have fun."
"I did. Good job on the guns. Get enough of those, and it'll be like the full Dyson swarm's hitting you in a straight line."
"That's the plan. The test was more than successful, and Aphid got a taste of the justice we deserve."
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