Hello! So emotions are still pretty raw following Netflix’s transgressions, and if you’re like us and having trouble processing, join us in April’s Drabble Fest!
This event is designed to create tons of little tales depicting all our favorite characters from TBH using prompts submitted by the fandom!
EVENT RULES: Submission Box:
Try to keep your prompts short and sweet so that the prompt list will be easier to read and less cluttered. For example: -a ship or character -one to a few randomly picked prompt words -a fanfic tropes (coffee shop date, road trip, fake dating, etc.) -theme (future fic, college, alternate universe, hurt/comfort, etc.)-short quote or sentence
You can submit as many prompts as you want! The more we get, the more writers can play around with.
YOU CAN SUBMIT PROMPTS WITHOUT HAVING TO WRITE A DRABBLE, THOUGH IT IS STRONGLY ENCOURAGED.
Once the official prompt list is posted, write for any/all prompts that inspire you! Don’t worry about repeating a prompt someone else did, the more the merrier! You can post anytime between April 1st-30th!
Aim for 300 words minimum. We're not going to hold you tight to this or police this policy. It's just a general recommendation. And we obviously won’t mind if your drabble becomes more of a fic length either! The goal is to merely make as much new writing as possible for all of us to enjoy!
Wherever you post your drabble (whether it's on twitter, tumblr, or AO3), please DM a link to this blog ( @tbhfanexchange ) or one of the mods @tornainbow or @jimalim to make sure your drabble is included in the round-up masterlist.
This event is open to all TBH characters, ships, and prompts!
March 12th to March 28th: Submission box will be open for prompts! We're closing it a little early so we have some time to compile the list and get it ready to go live on April 1st. Make sure to share the prompt box post so we can get as many as possible!
April 1st: Prompt list goes live! We will likely make it a google doc that is accessible for everyone. We may also post the list on it's own under a cut on the blog.
April 30th: The mods will start compiling a list of the drabbles posted over the month. Keep writing to your heart's desire, but we can't guarantee that anything posted after the 30th will be included in the masterlist post.
Sometime in the first week of May: Mods will post the masterlist for the event!
While this is a fic centric event, please don’t let that stop you from making any other kinds of content if you prefer! We are more than happy to accommodate any gifs, edits, fanart, fanvid, etc submissions if that’s your jam!
Outlast 1 boys reacting to a pregnant reader? And maybe them as dads? your blog gives me life
(i am too lazy to do my uni essay. the next logical step is to write 5k words of horror video game characters being dads i guess.
includes miles, chris, the twins, rick, eddie, jeremy, frank and for some reason DENNIS!
includes graphic childbirth scenes - why????? idk???? just because????? and mentions of drug use because frank is frank.
also are they phantom pregnancies? is your greatest joy just a figment of your imagination, a continuation of your insanity bleeding into your reality? are you too, depressed, like the writer is? muahaha...
"I'm - I'm gonna be a dad?" he gripped the steering wheel with such tightness that you thought he might break it. You nodded, smiling as tears prickled your eyes.
Miles let out a shaky sigh, then ran his fingers through his dark brown hair, smiling weakly before bursting into airy, light laughter.
"Babe, that's so -..." he swallowed, turning his head to you, nearly pouncing on you as he hurriedly leaned over to the passenger seat to embrace you, "That's awesome! When?"
"When what?" you giggled against his neck as he held you tight, rocking you clumsily. Maybe you should've told this after you got out of the car.
"When will - you -... holy shit! Like, give birth?"
He was stumbling over his words, his eyes wide and excited. Adorable, you thought, ruffling his hair as he buried his head into your chest.
"I don't know, maybe June," you shrugged, "We'll see."
Miles nodded, leaning back to take a good look at you, his face red and his hair messy, his eyes glistening.
"I'm gonna be a dad!" he blurted out, grinning so wide you thought his cheeks would split. A single tear rolled down to his sharp jawline.
The cold autumn air nipped at your nose as you sat on the park bench, your discarded mittens resting on the the bump of your belly as you held the small digital camera in your numb hands. The ground was covered in little piles of leaves underneath the stirring gray sky ablve Denver. You filmed the park, panning your camera to capture the old maple trees and the distant playground. Miles always liked these little clips you took, you thought. He stayed up for hours on end editing them into little movies that he would proudly present to the two, soon to be three, of you.
A small toddler girl ran from one edge of the frame to another, brown hair spilling in wisps from her beanie as she cackled, being chased by a hunched over Miles who was roaring theatrically.
"I got you!" he snatched your daughter to his chest, raising her up above his head and she squealed in delight as he spun her around in the air.
You laughed, ending the recording on a frame of Miles pressing a kiss to the child's cheek, holding her to his chest as she tried to squirm away.
"Mommy!" she yelled and you waved at her, shoving the camera into the pocket of your jacket.
"You wanna go to mommy?" Miles turned his head to you and grinned, "I'll race you."
He set your daughter to the ground and she started running, waving her limbs all about, stirring up flurries of red and gold leaves with her pink rubber boots.
Miles jogged behind her. You stretched your arms out and she bumped against your legs. You chuckled.
"Daddy's slow, isn't he?" you stroked her cheek as she turned her face to her father. Miles panted when he reached the bench.
"You won," he nodded to your toddler and swept strands of hair from his perspiring forehead, grinning at you, "Are you cold?"
"A little," you shrugged as your daughter climbed up on the bench, huffing with effort, clinging to your arm.
"Wanna grab a hot chocolate on the way home?" he gestured towards the other side of the nearby pond where the city's skyline collided with the heavy clouds, "I think it's gonna rain soon."
"Hmm," you hummed, stroking your belly with one hand while trying to keep your daughter from climbing over the back of the bench with your other hand, "My feet are tired, Miles."
"I'll rub them when we get home," he reached over to grab the girl from your grip and held her to his chest as she giggled, stirring in his arms.
"Fine," you smiled, "You better keep your promise."
Miles nodded, adjusting your daughter to his hip and reaching an arm to help you get off the bench.
"Pissing off a pregnant lady? Not on my bucket list."
"Miles!" you hissed, "Language!"
"I'm sorry, babe."
"You're kidding," his mouth was a thin line, his eyes fixed on yours, "Is this a prank?"
"No, not at all!" you shook your head with a laugh, "I'm pregnant. I swear. Took the test this morning," you flashed him a grin and grabbed the test from the edge of the sink, showing him, "See?"
Chris bent down to look at the test, still looking suspicious. Then his eyes widened and he smiled, letting out a laugh.
"Woah! Wait," he grabbed your wrist and his other hand shot up to his cheek as his mouth hung open, "Wait, I'm gonna be a father?"
You nodded, laughing.
"You need to sit down?" you patted his shoulder as he looked absolutely gobsmacked, leaning against the sink, his eyes fixed on the bathmat as he tried to process the news.
"Actually, yeah," he mumbled and sat on the toilet, burying his head into his hands for a second before looking up at you with the widest smile imaginable.
"You're pregnant," he huffed out a shaky laugh, taking your hand, "You're really pregnant."
You sat on his lap, wrapping your arms around his neck, kissing his left temple as you stroked his back soothingly.
"You're so amazing," he breathed out, "A baby? What the hell...?"
"I know, this is crazy," you muttered against the collar of his uniform shirt, "But I think we'll be fine."
"Yeah," Chris sighed, placing his hand on your cheek and stroked it with his thumb, "I think so too."
You rocked your son in your lap, stroking his platinum hair between pats on his back, a towel slung over your shoulder.
"He ready?" Chris muttered, outstretching his arms.
"I got a few good ones out of him," you sighed, lifting the gurgling and cooing baby by his shoulders and placing it in his arms, "But I don't know, we'll see if he goes to sleep."
Chris nodded and left you to fold the dry towel back into the linen closet of your small bungalow's bathroom. You rubbed your temples, tiredness stinging every muscle in your body as you dragged your feet to follow Chris to the bedroom.
His large form was bent over the crib, the back of his t-shirt lifting up slightly as he placed the boy into his bed, his head brushing against the hanging stars of the mobile. You walked up behind him and tugged on his shirt.
"Thanks," he mumbled.
"You're welcome," you yawned, "Is he going to sleep?"
"He's not putting up a fight," Chris straightened his back and looked down at you as you reached over his side to stroke the infant's cheek. His eyes were already close. You didn't know how Chris did it. He had a pacifying effect on your son whereas with you, he only seemed to be as rowdy as a three-month old can be.
You smiled tiredly. Your eyes skimmed over the little embroidered shooting stars of his blanky, the pastel yellow giraffe resting near his feet and the washed-out, dusky pink pig toy that he had wrapped his tiny hands around, squishing it against his chubby cheek.
"He loves your piggy," you leaned your head against Chris' shoulder.
"They're matching," he pointed one thick finger to his pink romper, smiling gently.
"Oh yeah," you laughed, pressing a kiss to your boyfriend's upper arm, "Unintentional on my part."
"My three little pigs," he squeezed your hand gently, "One," he patted the head of the stuffed pig, "two," he pinched his son's toe, "three," he kissed your temple, his lips soothing your headache as the two of you stood over the crib in the soft hue of the nighlight.
The deadpan delivery made you a little nervous. You thought you could see slight smiles on both of their faces in the flickering light of the cell. You felt a little annoyed, you had expected a far greater reaction. Maybe you were hoping for too much. You adjusted yourself on the bunk.
"We're happy," the taller man said, "But you seem to be avoiding something."
"Which one of us is it?" his brother completed the question, kicking a stray pebble. You stared at them. You couldn't believe it. Why did they have to overthink now, out of all the situations in the whole wide world?
You clicked your tongue.
"Does it matter?"
"Only if it matters to you," the shorter man reached up to scratch at his head, ruffling his dark, spiky hair. You watched his hand, wondering for a fleeting moment if the baby would have the same kind of hair. Rough and thick. But smooth in your hands.
"It really doesn't," you squared your jaw, "I don't care. As long as the both of you are here with me. Don't leave me."
Maybe they heard the crack in your voice. They both turned their gazes to you, their eyes soft as they watched you from the shadows. You slumped forward, resting your elbows on your thighs. Then you heard the soft sound of their feet hitting the floor and two masses plopping on the mattress on either side of you. A warm, large hand rested on your shoulder.
"You're ours, forever," you heard the taller man grunt in your ear, "We will protect you."
"Our lamb, our dearest," his brother whispered, placing his hand on the slight curve of your belly. You leaned into his touch, revelling in the squish of their bodies pressed against you, shoulder to shoulder. You closed your eyes, relief washing over you.
You pressed your sweaty forehead against his bicep, your throat raw from screaming as you felt a fantastic emptiness below your ribcage as the wails of your newborn filled your ears, its purplish skin glistening with mucus and blood as you wiggled your fingers at the hands that held the baby above your abdomen.
"Give it to me," you sobbed with intense relief as the balding, taller man, your other partner, placed the baby in your arms, where his brother settled his own hand underneath the child's head, bringing it closer to you, shushing the infant with a low, gentle voice.
Your vision was blurry.
"What is it?" you grunted.
"A boy," he muttered in your ear, placing the child on your heaving chest and you wrapped your arms around your son, as tears rolled down your cheeks and you panted, smiling at your baby, only choked sobs coming from you.
"A boy!" the other man called out over his shoulder to the crack of the door, wiping his bloody hands on your thighs. The congregation hooted and hollered behind the door and you distantly heard Father Martin singing praises to the Lord over the rushing of blood in your ears.
"It's like Christmas!"
"Everyone shut the fuck up!"
You laughed tiredly at the voices behind the door but your laugh turned into a screech as you felt a burning sensation in your loins. Something was wrong.
"What is it?" the taller twin furrowed his brows as you shoved your son to his brother's arms, gripping the sheets underneath you and spreading your legs again.
"I think there's another one coming, fuck!" you bellowed, propping your body up on your elbows. The taller man ducked between your legs and you felt his hands and you saw and felt white hot iron spill all over you as you screamed, his brother's fingers intertwined between yours and you growled as you heard another wail join the chorus of terrific noise rattling inside your head.
You felt your lungs swell and everything hurt but you saw, at the end of another umbilical chord, another baby. Twins. You should've known.
"A girl," her father muttered, grinning to you as she reached her tiny fists to pound at your chest and you stroked her back and the world behind the door ceased to exist as the brothers looked down on you with tender eyes, holding their fruit in your tired, sweaty arms as you rocked them senselessly and breathed deeply, smiling at everything in the room before you slumped back on the shorter man's chest and closed your eyes, feeling two pairs of arms wiping you down and heard low muttering.
"You did so well, you did so well."
Your head spun.
"No way," Rick held your shoulders at an arms length, his fingers digging into your flesh as he shook you gently, "No way you're pregnant."
It was almost frightening how wide his eyes were.
"Yes, I am," you gave him a slight smile, testing the waters. A silence fell between the two of you. Your heart beat like crazy. He was never this quiet. You could almost hear the gears turning in his head, underneath those luscious greying curls.
Then, a wide grin flashed on his face. He huffed through his nose, straightening his back and he pulled you into a tight hug.
"Pregnant!" he exclaimed, letting out a breathy chuckle as he leaned his head back and fixed his eyes on you, his hands sliding from your shoulders to your cheeks, "We're having a baby!"
"Yeah," you nodded your head, laughing.
Rick leaned down to kiss you on the tip of your nose, squishing your cheeks gently as you pressed your hands on his chest, rubbing circles on his skin through the soft fabric of his pink dress shirt.
"Oh, you sweet thing," Rick sighed, pressing his forehead against yours, "You're too good to me."
You poured a handful of cereal to a shallow plastic bowl and set it in front of your daughter who was fiddling with her bib, tracing the stitches with her tiny fingers. You tickled her tummy and cooed at her before straightening your back and looking at Rick, who was making pancakes on the stove, flour and pieces of eggshell all over the counters.
He had insisted on making you breakfast since it was your birthday. Usually he took you to a restaurant on your birthday but after the birth of your daughter he wanted to stay home as much as possible.
You eyed his apron. A honeymoon gift from a colleague, or so he had claimed. "My meat is hand rubbed, well seasoned, aged to perfection and always hot". Rick always wore it when he was making you a little romantic breakfast. Never in the neighbourhood barbecues though.
"You're gonna have to get rid of that apron," you gestured towards his chest, holding back your laughter.
"Yeah, yeah, I will," Rick looked down and sighed, then straightened out the fabric of the front, "When she learns to read, I'll throw it out, okay? I'll part with my dear apron for your sake."
"No, you're good. If she's got your brains, it'll take ten more years," you smirked, pinching your daughter's cheek as she babbled in her chair, fingers dipped into the dry fruit loops in her cup.
"O-ho-ho!" Rick laughed dryly, turning his grinning face to you, eyebrows high, "You want to insult your personal chef now! I'll make sure I burn yours," he scoffed and waved the spatula at you like a medieval weapon.
You walked up to him and wrapped your arms around his waist from behind as he turned to the stove.
"You know I only say it because it's true," you grinned against his shoulder and reached up to kiss the nape of his neck. He shuddered.
"Ticklish!" he warned.
"Oh, are you now?" you giggled, skittering your fingers up to his armpits and he squirmed with laughter, your daughter squealing in her chair, clapping her hands together at the show.
"No, stop, honey, the stove is on," Rick laughed, "Please - have mercy!" he turned to you and grabbed your wrists, giving you a grin, wrenching your hands off of him.
"Can you behave?" Rick cocked his head towards your daughter who was still giggling. His laugh always made her hyper.
"No, and your pancakes are burning," you grinned and gave him a quick, sweet kiss on the lips. He kissed you back tenderly before registering your words and swearing under his breath, whipping his head around to face the stove. Your daughter giggled again and Rick's eyes flickered to her and his face softened.
"Daddy's a klutz, isn't he?" he cooed to her from across the kitchen, "Daddy should feed this to the neighbor's dog, right, princess?"
She laughed again in and jumped up and down in her chair. You saw Rick mouth an "awh" before turning back to the stove.
You licked your lips. How many kids did he say he wanted again?
"Yes, yes!" he bellowed, as he took you by your waist and lifted you several feet into the air, spinning you around while you pounded playfully on his chest with your fists, laughing as tears streamed down your face, "Finally! Oh, I love you, I love you!"
He pressed you to his chest which shook with emotion as he breathed in the scent of your hair. You stroked his broad shoulders, stifling your own sobs by biting your lip and pressing your head into his chest. A warm silence filled the air as Eddie pressed soft little kisses to the crown of your head, muttering softly. You felt him rock you gently to the tune of the old radio.
"My darling. The mother of my children. I can't believe it."
"She's beautiful, just like her mother," Eddie whispered to you as the both of you stood over the improvised cot, watching your newborn daughter wiggle inside the many layers of blankets you had managed to find in the vocational block.
Eddie bent down to his daughter, his eyes glistening with adoration and tenderness, stroking the curls of soft black hair on her little head. She whined, leaning into his hand.
"She's got your eyes," you sighed and massaged his shoulder, leaning down as well, your nose mere inched from the little bundle in the cot.
"Really?" Eddie murmured, rubbing the pinkness of her skin softly, "I thought they were yours, darling."
"They might change," you whispered, curling your finger under her chin, "Newborns often change a little bit. My hair wasn't this color for sure when I got out of the womb," you smiled at your groom as his massive frame covered the baby as he leaned down to kiss her forehead. Another little grunt spilled from her lips and she screwed her eyes shut, kicking at her covers tiredly.
"Well, I'll be here to see if something changes," Eddie nodded, straightening his back and placing his chin on the top of your head, "You should go rest, dearest."
You looked down at the dried streaks of blood running down your legs and chuckled.
"I should go get a bath."
"I'll come with you," Eddie said, kissing the top of your head and rubbing your waist with his hand, almost needily.
"What, and leave the baby here?" you looked up at him.
"Oh," Eddie blushed a little bit, "Yes, I -..."
"Almost forgot?" you giggled, bending down to pick up your daughter, cringing at the pain in your loins but being flooded with oxytocin almost immediately after your skin touched hers.
"No!" Eddie blurted out defensively.
You turned to him with your newborn daughter in your arms.
"Take her," you said softly, standing on the tips of your toes, placing her in his arms, "Mind the head. Just like that."
Eddie gasped softly when you placed the child onto his hands for the first time. He looked at the stirring bundle of rags and pink, wrinkly skin and smiled, his eyes glinting in the dim light.
"She's tiny," he sighed, "Our baby. My god," he sniffled a little bit, exhaling deeply. You leaned over to kiss his cheek, stroking his forearm. The legacy he had always wanted. Here. Finally.
"Wait, what?" he lifted up the rickety plastic test that you had placed in front of him with his morning espresso, fixing his steely blue eyes on you "What's this?"
You just smiled, sipping your tea.
"What is this?" he repeated, wiggling the pregnancy test at you. Then something clicked.
"Are you pregnant?" Jeremy's voice was shaky, still hoarse from sleep as his eyes flickered between you, your stomach, and the red lines on the stick of plastic.
You nodded into your mug.
He leaned back on his chair, his face blank for a moment. Then he threw his arms up, his eyes much brighter, all tiredness washed away.
"You're pregnant!" he yelled, exasperated, his face melting into a smile, "I fucking knew it!" he rushed over to you in less than a second, his coffee cup clattering loudly against the marble of the countertop as he slammed it down, freeing his hands. You laughed as he wrapped his arms around you, the scent of his aftershave filling your nose as he kissed you, bitter coffee lingering on his lips.
"I'm home!" you called out from the hall, pulling the door shut with a heavy thump, kicking off your boots. You could already smell the scent of some microwave meal from the kitchen mixed with the scent of Jeremy's cologne. The distant jingle of a kids' show. You shook off your coat and started walking towards the living room, leaving your shopping bags on the doormat, fancy tissue paper rustling against sturdy bags with even fancier logos printed on them.
"Hey," you peeked your head in through the open entryway of the living room, the lacquered surfaces of sleek black furniture reflecting pastel colors from the massive plasma TV on the opposite wall. You could hear light snoring coming from the designer couch. You smiled and walked over to your husband, leaning down on the outside back of the couch.
He was sleeping in an upright position with your son curled up in his lap, Jeremy's feet slung over the glass coffee table. A bad habit. Stray crayons and colouring books littered the expensive carpet. Your son let out a whistling huff from his nose and shifted on his father's lap.
"Jer," you whispered softly, brushing your fingers against his hair, leaning over from behind him to place hover your chin over is shoulder, "Jer, wake up."
Jeremy jolted awake, looking around him in a few milliseconds of tired panic, spotted you and smiled.
"Hey, honey," he sighed, "We were just watching..." he narrowed his eyes at the television, "Super-d-... Wait, Super-dog and friends? Yeah. That."
"I see," you kissed his cheek, resting your chin on his shoulder, looking down at your son, "Had fun colouring?"
"He stole my pen," Jeremy pointed to the floor where a crudely drawn stick figure with too many fingers smiled with empty eyes beside a sloppily coloured Winnie the Pooh page. Some scribbled text on the bottom. MY DAD WORKS ATT MERKOF.
"You guys are too cute," you rubbed his shoulder, "Wanna take him to bed? I brought some wine."
Jeremy stretched before wrapping his arms around your son, lifting him up carefully against his chest.
"He's gotten big," he remarked with a strained voice.
"Four years go by pretty fast," you hummed, stroking your son's red cheek with the back of your hand.
"Feels like yesterday."
"It really does."
"You haven't aged a day," Jeremy's eyes flicked to you and he smiled tenderly, "Gorgeous," he added.
"Get him to bed, I'll go open the wine."
He finished licking the edge of the joint, his mouth hanging open slightly as his eyes fixed on your face.
"I'm pregnant," you repeated, slightly louder, "So you better not light that," you gestured to his hands.
Frank blinked at you, his face blank.
"A baby? We're gonna have a baby?"
The corners of his lips dipped down. For a second you thought he might burst into tears. Then a strained roar came from him as he jumped up from the dingy couch and jumped up to you, gripping your hands and leading you around the living room while jumping up and down in a frenzied dance, laughing with tears in his eyes.
"We're gonna have a baby," you hugged him tight, joining his feverish movements as the two of you jumped up and down like idiots, the creaking of the floorboards below you making you laugh, "We're gonna have a baby!" he yelled.
Someone pounded on the wall from the next apartment over.
"You're sure?" he stilled, panting, lifting his hands to your cheeks, "You're definitely sure?"
He kissed you, his scraggly beard scraping against your skin, his bare chest pressing to you.
"Oh, angel, I -... I have to..." Frank breathed against you, his eyes widening again, "I have to call my mama!"
You threw your head back and laughed as he vaulted over the back of the couch, skidded on the floor with his hole-speckled socks and dove into the bedroom in less than two seconds. You down, taking his joint from the floor between your fingers and shoving it in between the couch cushions. For safe keeping. He would need it in a few months. But from now on he had to smoke outside.
"Mom, mom," you felt a little hand smack your shoulder and you buried your head deeper into your pillow. You woke up in a jolt.
"What is it?" you groaned, your eyes crusty with sleep, "What's the time?"
"It's six a.m," you heard your daughter's giddy voice. You could tell from her voice she was grinning ear to ear. No emergency. Probably. Then you realized that her voice sounded kind of muffled.
You moaned. You still had an hour before your alarm would go off. But it seemed like your alarm was here. With lots of effort, you rose up and rubbed your eyes.
Your daughter was standing by your bedside, a sheet draped over her like a veil and a latex skeleton mask on her face. It was way too big for her. A silence filled the room. Then you could hear her breathe in deeply.
"I'm Santa Muerte," she whispered dramatically.
"You're what now?"
Her shoulders slumped.
"Da-ad!" she yelled over her shoulder at the open door of the bedroom, "Mom doesn't know who I am!"
"Mom what?" you heard Frank's voice from the kitchen. They were both so loud.
Your daughter inhaled, ready to scream louder but you shushed her.
"Of course you're -... What's with the costume, baby?"
She shrugged, peeling the mask off of her face, giving you a gap-toothed smile.
"It was my idea," you heard Frank say as he appeared in the doorway, and to your surprise, was carrying a tray of food, still clad in his sleep attire. Faded boxers and an old band shirt.
"Oh, angel," you smiled at him tiredly, "You shouldn't have."
"I wanted to," he grinned behind his beard, "Happy mother's day."
You had forgotten.
"Oh, yeah," you mumbled as he set the tray on your nightstand and leaned in to kiss your cheek as you propped yourself up on your pillows.
"I wanted to scare you," your daughter grumbled and reached for a slice of toast but Frank snatched her wrist.
"Mom first," he said sternly, then his face twisted into a quizzical expression, "Why'd you want to scare mom? I thought you just wanted to perform some metal or something. The mask was mine," he added to you as you giggled into your slice of bread, swiping crumbs off the sheets.
Your daughter shrugged again.
"Thought it would be fun."
Frank opened his mouth to protest his involvement but you just laughed, ruffling your daughter's long black hair.
"Weirdo," you took another bite of bread and offered the rest of it to her as she scooted up to sit on your legs. Frank sat on the edge as well, taking your hand, rubbing his thumb on the cheap ring he'd bought you ages ago, eyeing the way the gold glinted in the dim light of the bedroom.
"Don't even think about replacing it," you warned and shoved a piece of toast in front of his mouth and he smiled before taking a bite.
"W-well I'll be goddamned," he grinned, enclosing your hand in both of his, lifting the bundle to his lips and placing a tender kiss to your fingers, "Y'all hear that? Me, a-a daddy? Shit..."
You laughed, reaching up to place a kiss on his cheek as he cradled your hand in his grip, so softly, like he was holding a baby bird.
"Don't get all soft on me, Dennie," you giggled, "You're going to make me cry."
He shook his head.
"D'you think th-they'll like him?"
"Who? The baby?"
He nodded, his grin twisting into a solemn look, his dark brown eyes fixed on yours, glimmering with intense happiness and even more intense worry.
"I'm sure they will," you whispered and stroked his cheek, "All that matters is me and you right now, okay?"
He nodded again.
"Hey, lil' guy," Dennis cooed, stroking your son's tiny, pink and wrinkled face with his index finger as he wailed and screeched in his arms, "He's sure g-got a pair o' lungs on him," he turned to you, chuckling as you held your arms open, as you tried to ignore the searing pain between legs. You were flooded with a need to hold your newborn. Hold them both. Your Dennie and his little boy.
"Give him to me," you sighed with a weak smile, "And get us a rag. We need to clean him."
Dennis placed the newborn onto your chest and he writhed against you as you rocked the child, shushing him gently.
"Careful, he's slippery," he cocked his head, flashing a wide toothy smile as he eyed the two of you, "They thought I didn't have enough man in me," he sighed.
"We shut them up," you winked at him and he nodded, reaching over to the side table, retrieving a torn piece of cloth and placing it in your outstretched hand.
"We showed 'em."
(screaming and crying and sobbing and shitting into my pillow rn because i can never be a baby mommy for fictional insane men)
12 DAYS OF GIFMAS / Day Four, Your OC in Another Universe/Fandom (PT. 1 / PT. 2 / PT. 3): Ali Blaire from Dazzler in the Multiverse: Into the Spider-Verse
TO BE CLEAR—it was not Ali’s fault that some random portal opened and sucked herself up, only to drop her body off in some other alternate universe…this time. Honest. She didn’t even know the multiverse was real! But now that she does know, she’s never going to shut up about it.
(Peter B. Parker can attest to this.)
Perhaps it was fate’s way of bringing a bunch of people with similar powers—minus Ali, what’s up with that?—together to fight a common enemy (renditions of whom they’ve each faced in their own respective universes)? Or maybe the universe has no rhyme or reason and this purely happened by chance.
Ali was way too psyched about being a few universes away from home, and she wanted to take as much advantage of the opportunity as she could. When the time came to return to her own universe, she found it hard to let go.
Maybe she had really grown accustom to Earth-1610, or maybe she was trying to avoid something in her home universe.
Or maybe…she had just created a super close bond with all of her new friends whom she didn’t want to leave so soon. (However, everyone knows who she’s really talking about.)
The cabin is quiet in the morning when it’s inhabitants start to stir. As the sun creeps up over the treeline, Waylon is already awake and making coffee in the abandoned kitchen, half dressed in boxers and a vest, giving whoever wakes next a good morning kiss and hug.
This morning, it’s Alex, who is ready to go for a morning swim, but takes a small cup of coffee out with him, returning the kiss and hugging him back. Miles follows quickly, so the Walrider can have a chance to flow into the water with him.
He stands on the shore as supervision for the two with a coffee that Waylon hands him, giving the blonde a sharp swat on the ass, getting a lazy kick to the shins in response.
Gale is the next to rise, taking a coffee with a quiet thanks, and heads out to keep Miles company as he watches the Walrider and Alex race the lake.
Waylon gives him a kiss too, before pouring two more cups of coffee, and going back to his own bed, and setting the spare cup on the drawers. He starts up his laptop to get the day’s mail from Simon, and smiles as Jeremy shifts next to him, an arm snaking around his waist.
“Coffee’s there. The others are out at the lake.” He smirks as Jeremy kisses at his thigh.
Alright, that's enough you guys, we either have to stop making such good posts about the Scorsese movie that doesn't exist, or someone has to make it because I really wanna watch this movie now...but, obviously, if someone were gonna make it. The movie would have to have some elaborate marketing scheme that plays into it being a movie that doesn't exist.
Here are my ideas. Somebody make a mockumentary about Goncharov (”Goncharov: The Movie That Isn’t” is my running title) where some people try and figure out where the movie comes from, obviously, they discover the post about the boots, but they go the extra mile and look into why the clothing tag with a nonexistent movie was made in the first place(this has also already actually been done for us by the people of Tumblr).
Then they start to discover discrepancies that hint at something deeper, this is where the mock part of the mockumentary begins, basically, they find evidence that someone has messed with space and time to remove Goncharov from our universe, revealing that it WAS a real Scorsese movie. All of the stuff they've discovered so far has been some kind of time-paradoxical cover-up. You can even make a secret time and space agency that created the boots post and make a joke about all the Tumblr users who joke about the film being rogue agents trying to whistle low.
So obviously the crew start trying to find a way to get it back/find out why it was erased. Shenanigans ensue. They’re obviously trying not to become space and time fugitves. They setthe on the goal of re-releasing Goncharov in our universe to try and reveal the scandal. The movies ends with the crew getting their hands on a copy of Goncharov (1973*) but they immediately notice that it's different, all the actors and creative credits are completely different from the figures we know as the cast of Goncharov (1973), but the plot seems to be almost identical to what's been described by Tumblr users. That's because it's not the version from OUR universe.
Then we get a trailer for the release of this version of the movie (like how the movie “X” had a Trailer for it's prequel “Pearl” shown after it in theaters) to reveal that there is entire movie made in the style of a 1973 Scorsese film (with any discrepancies between it and our worlds scorsese being written of as differences between our universes) that is based on the film you all have loving created. And since it's an alternate universes version we can get away with hiring anyone to be the actors and just say their an actor from the other universe. Plus you can market it as Goncharov (1973*) and have a little disclaimer on the posters that say “*not OUR 1973, a different 1973 from someone else’s universe” and have the mockumentary cast do press tours in character (like how the original Blair Witch marketing all insisted it was a real movie about a real event). Some of press should probably acknowledge that's it's all fake just for the sake of ethics or something but idk.
- a xeniden connected to the feeling of missing home, whether physical, metaphorical, metaphysical, etc. it may concern feeling lost in the world or missing a home which never was. it may also concern missing individuals, places, or things regardless of whether one has actually come into contact with them in this life or reality. it can be bitter and painful, but it can also be sweet and nostalgic. it is however you wish to interpret it and is very flexible. this term welcomes alterhumans and introjects with open arms, as well as any humans who simply miss whatever home may mean to them.
themes and aesthetics - chalk, campfires, magnifying glasses, scholastic book fairs, virtual pets, silly bandz, being last to let go in hugs, driving home, play doh, nintendo ds cartridges, hotels, dirt, grime, longing for those you once knew, untied shoelaces, game soundtracks, crowns, dried creeks, bustling urban life, the dvd screensaver hitting the corner, graveyards, camcorders, max and ruby, sleepovers, hats, play fights, computer lab, moss, late nights spent with loved ones, moose and zee, overpasses, snow, tetherball, warm laundry, lip balm, vintage game consoles, cathartic yelling, empty halls, swaying grass, finding beauty in decay, jenga, ghost towns, playgrounds, rolling the tv cart to the front of class, rainbow parachute games...
themes and aesthetics (contd.) - quiet diners, droning background noise, small jars, guitar hero, singing with old friends, running through the forest, worn staircases, scooter boards, converse, lying in grass, heelys, pictochat, various sweets, classic ipods, wired headphones, the wii cursor, trading cards, togetherness, traveling, wet asphalt, white noise, babbling rivers, sunken ships, horror classics, incense, bronze, sun showers, ripped jeans, photo albums, ghost hunting, plants growing wherever they please, honing weaponry, bloodstone, having company, hermit crabs, rollerblades, cartoon network, caffine, neon signs, dawn and dusk, play bows, sticks, minecraft blackstone, howling, brass, paper chatterbox, dim florescent lighting, hunting by necessity, gatherings, mountain ranges, lost civilizations, wet fur, rotting wood, violets, steady horizons, swiss army knives, minecraft discs, sand, ripe fruit, clocks, burning plastic, shiny things, cicadas, castles, radio static, community, waves, glitter, controlled chaos, balconies, body heat, ancient ruins, vast stretches of space, dreamlands, healing bruises, rainfall on leaves, bioluminescence, blinking lights, obscurity, crickets, lost time, abandoned buildings, ball pits, dolls, bug hunting, embroidery, fungi, isolation, damaged wires, rust, musty foliage, taking things apart, monuments, moonwashed clouds, copper, annoying friends with overplayed tunes, overdue library books, waters below docks
just curious— do you think jeremy blaire is the type to get jealous when the female reader talks / laughs with other guys ? or will he be insecure ? same question goes for miles.
it’s fine if you don’t want to write this heh
(happy valentines day here's jeremy blaire being the manipulative bastard he is lol. the day of love and all that.)
Jeremy is one manipulative bastard.
Honestly, I do think Jeremy is the kind of guy to get jealous when he sees you laughing and joking around with other men. Even if he tried to convey this image of being cool, calm and collected at all times, he internally panics when you're just enjoying time with another person who happens to be male. Toxic masculinity things and all that.
Even if you're not dating, he's obsessed with the thought of owning you. You caught his attention and now - now you have to suffer the consequences.
Outwardly, Jeremy will seem fine. But he will definitely try to insert himself into the conversation, making a point to brush up against you or pat you on the shoulder. Just to try and let you know you belong to him. He'll smile and nod at the other gentleman, maybe offer up some sharp observations about their manners and such. Squish them down a little bit. They're not good enough for you.
He thinks you belong to him.
You think it's awkward. Especially when you're not dating.
But if you're dating - oh boy.
He'll be openly touchy with you if he sees you striking up a conversation with another guy, settle his hand on the small of your back, pulling you closer to him as he acts like everything is fine, taking over your conversation with the guy, not letting you get a word in as he tries to push his "competitor" away with the sheer awkwardness.
Smirks triumphantly when the guy walks away. You just glare at him. This happens all too often.
And when you get home, he's sure to remind you what he thinks about your social habits.
He'll be very upset for no good reason.
But the way he shows his frustration at it all is not to take it out on you - not directly. He'll make you feel bad for him, with him giving you the silent treatment and being upset. It stems from his insecurity. And you have to be there to comfort him when he's the one who should be apologizing. But he'll justify it by saying he loves you too much.
Make up sex. With lots of hickeys to make sure everyone knows you belong to him.
He is a very jealous person simply because he thinks the world is his oyster and you're his personal plaything and should have eyes for him and only him.
Miles, on the other hand, respects and trusts you enough to not be too pressed about it.
Before you were dating, sure, he had that kind a jealousy we all have when we're crushing on someone. Irrational frustration at something that's normal.
He's always very joking about it, if it's a mutual friend or an acquaintance, he'll come up to you and adopt his best mafia accent and be all: "Is this fella bothering you, toots?"
Might go home and scream into his pillow though, because he wants that to be him. He wants to be the one you're so close to. Sure, you do talk a lot with him, text him a lot, slap his arm when he tells a crude joke, sometimes you bite your lip when you look up into his eyes as he's telling you about his new project, all passionate... Wait. Was he overthinking it? Maybe you did like him better than anyone else? Maybe?
Miles is kind of a confused mess.
But if you start dating, he calms down, because he doesn't need to take it seriously.
He doesn't own you.
He trusts you when you say that he's your one and only. Because he treats you as an equal.
Photo Edits/Graphics/Page Breaks by me. Gifs as credited.
Signals Lost: Sy x Reader
Synopsis: Set at the start of the Iraq war, and the years that follow. Y/N (Reader) and Captain Syverson meet on base as he trains for a new role in the military.
Warnings: 18+ Angst/Romance/Smut: (Update as I go) Slowburn, misogyny, swearing, drinking, smoking.
A/N: I've been sitting on this one for a while, um'ing and ahh'ing over whether I should publish. My first series so please be kind, like, reblog etc. Feedback is always appreciated! I am but a wee Sy fan with big ideas for his character.
Do not steal, do not re-post to external sites or claim as own.
Disclaimer: Not Beta’d, all mistakes are my own. Details of military life from personal experience not fact. I do not own any rights to Captain Syverson/Sandcastle.
Feedback and commentary are appreciated, enjoy BBZ. Saff x 🥸✌️
MINORS DNI! YOU WILL BE BLOCKED!!
Reading Time: 26 Minutes
I - September 9th, 2002:
The droning of your strained car engine blends with the booming pop beat coming through the old blown-out speakers. Indicating right onto the quiet motorway, you wind the window down to alleviate the late summer heat. Allowing your hair to whip around your face you can feel the cool lick as the wind finds the sweat at your hairline. Switching into 4th and pulling into the stream of traffic you turn your indicator back up and settle in for the next 20 odd miles of countryside. The sun sags heavily, looming over the wide horizon blanketing the expanse of flat fields. In the distance, a huddled group of hangers and buildings reveal your destination, a town rising in a wispy haze of heat blooms.
Living in the middle of bumfuck nowhere has its benefits, a sense of happy isolation from the world - but desperately boring at times. You think of your friends you left school with, happily married with children, the continual drip of dull, domestic life. But you are happy, at least this summer had been a happy one. Since graduating from Uni you’d made an effort to be more sociable, taking this job was one check off that list, meeting new faces getting to know the locals. It wasn’t a well-paid job, but a family friend put you up to it on the assurance the Americans tipped well. Which they did of course, but on the rare occasion they didn’t, they more than made up for it with a story or two.
Now 6 weeks in you felt comfortable, and conversation was something you’d always excelled at - you’d be lying if you didn’t admit the best part of the job was being able to mingle with some of the best looking men you’d ever laid eyes on, but that was just a perk. They were different to the men here at home, alien. You’d never encountered so many tall, broad men, fatigues filled with muscles - and that’s ignoring just how respectful they were. Yes Ma’am this, No Sir that.
Overtaking a tractor heavily laden with beet, a wobble from under your accelerator reminds you to book the wheel alignment on your piece of shit car, you sigh as you make a mental note to call the garage as soon as you get to the bar, more expense to worry about. The sun still setting on the skyline you reach the first sign for the base, your reminder to turn off. Making the turn into the left lane you see litter left behind from a recent anti-war protest, fluorescent signs plastered with the CND symbol, angry slogans zip-tied to the chain-link fence, and one very offensive cartoon of Bush and Blair in some sort of 69 position. If only you could stop and steal that one, it was bloody hilarious, thinking about how you might pick it up on your way back later to avoid explaining it to the entry guards on your way in. Pulling up to the gates you fish your ID from your bag, wind down the rest of your window, and make sure to slow enough to appease the 4 huge men gripping tactical firearms. Just to quell your anxiety you pull forward cautiously until the one at the front holds his hand out gesturing a stop.
“Good Evening Ma’am” He twangs with a short smile “Identification?”
“Sure, I’m headed to The Stoke, I’m a barmaid there,” You say trying not to look at the huge rifle clipped to his jacket. “uhh Civvy” you add.
“Ok, you know where you’re headed Miss?” he hands back your ID with what seems like a wink.
“Yes thanks” you nod awkwardly, ignoring the subtle twinkle from his eye.
“Lemme just get your slip” he notes pointing to the hut, “what time are you finished?”
“Midnight, but can you make it one please?” he looks at you expectantly “oh sorry…I mean I’m locking up tonight so it will probably take a bit longer, you can check in with my manager if you need to, um Brian West”
“No it’s fine Ma’am just make sure you're off the base by one, or I’ll be in the shit” he smirks. After a short moment in the hut he comes back with a parking slip on a piece of receipt paper:
The barrier lifts and you wave your thanks as you make your way over the speed bumps. A handful of flag poles line the road, the ropes clinking against the metal posts in the late-afternoon breeze. Little roads meander from the hub of the base twisting to meet behind the administration building towards your right. Here the streets are named after states, to your right Iowa leads across to the rear of the admin block, and straight on California to the airfield. Making sure to stick to the 10mph speed limit you drive past clusters of airmen huddled at junctions, some guarding entrances to unmarked doors, others checking the array of parked cars with mirrors on sticks. The base has been on high alert ever since what happened last year, but even more now the anniversary was approaching.
The bar is found at the recreation plaza a little further back from the building you just passed, but still nowhere near the bulk of the small town here. In the distance, you can see the heavily guarded interior gates that block the operational base from the residential side. The airfield and hangers slowly fade into the dusk, and you can make out a dozen or so figures lumbering seats and benches to a roped-off area on the tarmac. To the east of that, there’s a huge middle school for the kids here on base, a complex of married quarters and row upon row of small houses lining what looks like the streets of a model village; as if someone tried to replicate an American suburb with very little space. Not nearly enough to house the 1500 strong population of families here on PCS. Bathed in the yellow floodlights you note the group of men jogging down the path toward the entry gates, and park your car around the back of the bar.
You place the parking slip on your dashboard, grab your bag and slide out of your car. It’s not really a ‘plaza’, just a group of buildings huddled around a small fountain lined with more flags and an outdoor seating area. Directly opposite a bustling pizza shop serves a growing line of Friday night customers. Next door is a now-closed donut shop, that one gets real busy in the morning, and past that the gym specifically for relatives on the base. Checking your watch you note the time 17:19 and walk through the open double doors into the bar.
A cloud of cigarette smoke lingers above the mass of bodies at the entrance, practically squeezing through the huddle of men, you see all the tables are filled. Mostly groups of men drinking together after work, but some are families and couples. In the far corner past the pool table, you see what appears to be an unofficial creche of misplaced children playing cheerfully, several running and sliding on their knees to the noisy music. Hugging through the crowd you raise your hand and smile at Mary behind the bar, letting her know you’ve arrived. She barely notices you as she’s taking cash off a woman with one hand and pouring red wine with the other. Setting your things on the hook behind the kitchen entrance, you sign in to the clipboard on the back of the door and check your reflection in the mirror. A crumpled paper sign saying Smile hangs aside it from a small strip of not-so sticky tape. Before you’ve even got time to tie your apron around your waist Mary comes wobbling back to greet you,
“Y/N so glad you’re here, I would ask how you are but I’m rushed off my feet, do you mind starting a bit earlier?”
“I’ll be right there Mar” quickly finger-combing your wind whipped hair, you check your mascara and apply a quick coat of lip gloss. Whilst practicing your best smile you unashamedly adjust your top to expose more of your chest than normal, extra tips you think. You scoot around the barrels of oil and kegs of beer in the hallway, and squeeze past Brian who is making his way back to the Kitchen holding an empty tray from the hotplate, “Brian!” you give him a friendly smile, “Busy tonight!” you quip. He grumbles under his breath and in his typical quick wit shouts back “for my sins!”, limping off to refill the fries.
The back of the bar is small, only room for two to pass, but pretty much covers the length of the room, “you take that end Y/N” Mary shouts, you can barely hear her over the band that’s playing on the small stage at the right of you, smiling at the sea of hands waiting for service, you move closer to Mary, “I said you take that end” she repeats into your ear, a waft of cheap perfume and cigarette ash lingering around her head. “I need to get another crate of bottles, you man the fort”, you nod in understanding.
“Can I do that for you, what about your back?” almost yelling into her face, it’s so bloody loud. Yet another night the band ‘forgets’ to soundcheck.
“Don’t mind me dear just get these people away from my bar” she shouts and turns before lifting her hand “don’t forget to take a card if you’re doing tabs, for the love of god Y/N” Mary smiles at you and slaps you on the back as she teeters off to the storeroom on her heels. Mary wasn’t elderly, but she was small and hunched. Clearly once a very beautiful woman, she was prideful in her appearance - always neat. She never wore flat shoes regardless of her back pain, always wore dresses, and styled her perm with what smelled like a full can of Elnette. Given her pack a day habit, it was a total surprise she didn’t self-combust. A never-ending bundle of energy despite her aging years, she and Brian had managed the bar here for well over 30 years, even before the Yanks descended. Turning back to the baying crowd at the bar you take a deep breath and start on orders, a pitcher of draught beer and 2 glasses, whiskey chasers, red wine, more beer, 3 bottles of Pepsi for the kids. Being a barmaid wasn’t hard but it was difficult getting around the expectations of the customers. We didn’t have those fancy cherries or all the brands of liquor they wanted, we didn’t even have an ice machine - but we did our best with a smile, no matter how forced.
About an hour after arriving, the crowd starts to quieten as the early birds make their way home before the evening drinkers pile in. The families and children, some carried sleeping by their parents, leave the bar; satisfied and ready for bed before the weekend ahead. You take advantage of the change in pace and move to the far end of the counter to count the cash and deposit it in the till, punching in the numbers to ensure it all totals at the end of the night. Don’t want a repeat of last week. A major fuck up on your part had the till declaring to be hundreds over what you actually had counted out back. An awkward conversation later everything was fixed, but you just didn’t want to go through that again.
“I’m back dearie” Mary appears from the back door clutching napkins in her neatly manicured hand, “want to take a break? Get some air?” she says while fiddling with the napkins and making little piles of paper umbrellas for the pots. The band has stopped for a quick break, their instruments resting on the stage - only the backup CD playing now, a slow country ballad. Looking across the dance floor you note the dirty tables full of glasses and a few couples slow dancing in the disco lights.
“I thought you’d never ask! Do you mind if I make a call from the phone?” you say wiping the sweat from your top lip.
Uninterested she waves her hand “yes dear that’s fine” she’s now measuring out bowls of bar nuts.
“Thanks Mar, I’ll just grab these dirties from the floor first”. Moving around the room you bring them up to the bar, noting the stack of glasses and pitchers left on the pool table. Tutting to yourself, you have no idea why they won’t get someone else to help. It’s going to be even more manic later. Remembering to make your call to the garage you have a sly smoke break out the back door and make your way to the toilets. It’s not even 7 pm and you’ve been so busy you didn’t even have time to piss. Reaching for the paper you feel an empty roll, typical! - thankfully you have a napkin in your apron, you wash your hands, and get started on checking the customer loos for the same problem.
It’s not long before the bar is filled again with heated bodies bustling towards the counter, cash in hand eager for service. Thankfully Brian has closed up the kitchen and is diligently working the floor, grabbing empties from tables and replacing the back of the bar with boiling glasses from the dishwasher. A group of airmen on your right side propping up the bar, are keenly keeping you busy in bottles of beer and tequila chasers. The band is back now, but instead of the previous crowd-pleasing country music, they’ve switched to some rock and roll. Mostly oldies but a few you recognise and love. A pretty decent cover of ZZ Tops – Gimme All Your Lovin blasts over the noisy PA system. Dancing along to the music you swiftly take orders and cash in return for booze including the odd kiss on the cheek. You’re raking in the tips tonight. In your head, you’re not just the barmaid, you feel as if you were Violet from Coyote Ugly, free pouring whiskey into the mouths of rabid men, spraying them with water when things get too wild. Taking a swig from your bottle of beer you lean across the bar to greet another nameless regular with a friendly face.
“Two beers babe” he shakes a 10 in your face, teasingly pulling away when you go to take it. Following his lead, you put the 10 in your cleavage, cheekily pocketing the change and hand him the bottles.
“Service with a smile” you grin. Have a nice day arsehole.
In the corner of your eye, you see Mary dancing with a young serviceman who’s found his way behind the bar, doing her best Tina Turner impression strutting in her wobbly heels. Brian simply raises his eyebrows to subtly acknowledge what is clearly a regular occurrence and carries on stacking cups. Whilst Tina’s getting her rocks off you try your best to move up and down the bar, pouring pitchers and pulling beer caps at the same time. It’s getting late, past 10 at least, and your back heaves, impatient with the mob.
The thumping bass line from the speakers hits your chest relentlessly as you hurry from punter to punter your shoes sticking to the mess of soda and spirits spattered on the linoleum. Taking short breaks you pull your cold bottle of beer to your cheeks to ease the burn of the humid room on your skin. Before you realise it the optics on the wall need changing and you shout to Brian to grab more whiskey and another bucket of ice.
Predictably the serviceman who was dancing with Mary is now behind you playfully rocking his hips to the music against your back as you pass drinks across the counter. Refusing to rise to it, you try to push him away with an awkward laugh at the men in front of you. He drunkenly stumbles back against the wall of optics and comes back closer forcing you up against the bar, humping you insistently in time to the music, laughing as if it’s all some kind of big joke. Drinks spill over you as he pushes you further into the countertop. You look at the faces in front of you, some of them women cheering him on in howls, the others laughing at the display in front of them. A flush rises to your cheeks, embarrassed by the attention. You’re used to being teased by these types of guys, but right now you feel entirely humiliated, fucking pig. Pushing again you move your right elbow back as hard as it can to meet the side of his ribs.
“Get the fuck off me” you yell. “Arsehole!”. A chorus of boos erupt from the baying audience.
“You’re no fuckin’ fun” he spits in your face, before swiftly jumping back over the bar into the commiserating thumps of his friends, pulling off a strip of stars and stripes bunting with his boot as he goes. As hard as you try to shake it off a wave of guilt enters your mind, you worry you were too harsh, and take a deep breath. Moving the hair from your face you use a bar mat to mop up the spillage as best you can, chuck it in the corner of the floor, and turn to serve the airmen waiting on the right-hand side of the bar; holding back a burn of tears you summon your best fake smile.
“You ok?” The taller of them leans in and hollers to your ear, you step back and meet his heavy-lidded eyes, he’s probably just doing the gentlemanly thing. “Fucking trench monkey” he jibes whilst the 4 others beside him roar in agreement. “4 more shots!” he waves a note.
“I’ll be fine, typical Friday night” shrugging it off, you take his money and lay out the glasses pouring warm tequila to the brim. On decanting a 5th for yourself you snicker at the handsome face eagerly watching you, “emotional compensation” you add with a wink.
“Hell yeah baby!” he howls following your lead and in passing back the drinks to his buddies they chant and down them in unison.
“Free Bird! Free Bird!” an anonymous voice booms from the crowd toward the exhausted band. A smattering of claps and cheers punctuates the request as agreement. The band reluctantly continues for one last song as the ring of the bell signals it’s time to move on.
“Jesus!” you slump your tired arms against the counter, your hazy head falling on your hands.
“Another packed night” Mary pats you on the back in appreciation. Moving up and down the bar, cigarette in hand - unphased by the wild events before. “Good for business” she chirps, spraying the wood and polishing each section fervently.
“Yeah, about that Mar, any chance you can find someone else to help out?” you straighten and look toward her optimistically, the last of the rabble slowly rolling out of the open doors and crisp evening.
“It depends, you’re not planning on leaving us?” pointing at the grate above the hatch she pulls herself onto a small step stool to reach the top.
“No!” you laugh, “despite the over-friendly customers, I really enjoy it here…”
“1, 2, 3” and you both pull down on the metal together, closing the bar for the night. You fiddle with the lock on the grate and put the key in her small hand.
“I mean, the 3 pm shift not so much” you joke, “it gets kind of slow, you know?”
“Well,” she starts “I’ll speak to Brian, he’s the man with the money.” A smile forms at her mouth and she winks. “Speaking of, do you want to be paid now or Sunday?” from nowhere she has a mop in her hands and with her back turned she gets stuck into relieving the sticky mess from the floor. The lights buzz on from the left to right, and all that’s left is the loud ring of tinnitus and Brian shaking the hands of the weary band on the far side of the floor.
Sunday is planned to be a quiet day, the base has a full day of anniversary events lined up, the bar will probably host a few small groups – mainly the regular crowd before they head back to their homes. “Sunday is more than fine” you reply.
Shutting the back door ensuring it clicks, you turn the key in the lock and replace the key chain to your ID lanyard. All that’s left of the night is the navy blue of the star-dotted sky and a misty amber glow from the many floodlights dotted across the estate. Rummaging in your bag you quickly check the time - 12:25 am.
“Night Y/N” Mary waves out the passenger side of her car as Brian drives them back toward the entry gates along the vast airfield.
Still time for a quick smoke, you think, before you get back in your car and head home. Lifting the filter to your lips you pull a lighter from your pocket and drag the thick burning vapour to your lungs, a wash of peace falls over you and you flex your heavy shoulders. The base is practically silent, save for the whir of generators and vehicles on the breeze. It isn’t until you walk a little way to your car you suddenly hear a cacophony of raised voices - angry voices. Around the corner of the bar, a small gathering of people litter the plaza, refusing to give in to the call of their beds. Directly in front of the now locked doors, you see the airmen you served earlier, arguing with a couple of guys sitting on the wall. One of them seems to be spitting sick into a bush, hunched hands on knees into the raised flower bed. Lovely. Not wanting to be seen you slide back against the cool brick and continue to meditate on the evening gone. The burning embers of your cigarette light your face as you take a deep breath and sigh heavily.
Being on base always feels a little like trespassing into a place you’re not supposed to be, the last thing you want is to be caught in all this. The echo of retching and vomit hitting the pavement turns you around. You know you should really get going but he was kind to you earlier, checking in on you – and you really couldn’t forgive yourself if you didn’t try to help, fuck. Whilst crossing the cobbles you dig in your bag for tissues, maybe you could even grab him a water from the kitchen, it’s the least you could do. You flick the half spent cig to the side and squat down to face the Airman.
“Hey, I just wanted to say thanks for checking in on me ba…” you are quickly interrupted by a scoff on the other side of the pathway.
“That’s the fucking bitch”. In the low glow of the parking lot lights, you realise it’s your insistent dance partner from before. His mouth curled up in disgust. “Don’t flatter yourself” he jeers clearly hurt. Fucking fuck! “What’s your name?”
You offer the tissues to the man at your side.
“It’s Y/N,” you say timidly. “Look, I didn’t mean any offe..”
“Well you’re a Cunt Y/N!” he spits on the floor at your foot punctuating the disgusting word from his mouth as you step back trying your best to avoid the inevitable confrontation.
“Hey that’s out of line buddy” a bystander points back.
“Go home, Bryant,” another says shaking his head.
Before you can process what the hell is happening or even bother to try and argue back, the nauseous airman is wobbling ahead of you. Squaring up to your aggressor, unstable fists raised for a fight, he lunges forward pushing him back into the bush. A symphony of groans and shouts erupt as his colleagues run to pull him back. The men grapple with each other for an uncomfortably long time, their arms pulled back in anger over and over again, battering whatever they could find. A sickening thud and snap echoes across the plaza, and the airman falls back on his bum clutching his nose.
I can’t believe this, FUCK. “Shit man, what the fuck is wrong with you?!” you groan as you push the wad of tissues under the airman’s nose, his warm blood emptying all over your hands.
Without warning a truck surges into the parking lot, brakes shrieking as you cover your eyes from the blinding white beams of the headlights. The stragglers hanging about the plaza quickly scatter and tramp back to their respective quarters, a sign that you should too. You get back on your feet, backing up between the entrance to the bar and the men in front.
If you had a chance to dash it, it’s definitely gone now. Two figures emerge from the cab, slamming their doors in time, resonating a loud bang off the circle of buildings. They’re looking in your direction, or at least at the group of exhausted men in front of you. The bigger of them is wearing smartly pressed fatigues with a green beret, he towers head and shoulders above the rest. His thick arms swing at his side as he advances. Considering you’ve been working on base for 6 weeks, you still have zero idea what any of the uniforms or patches mean - but just from the swagger of this hulking guy…you know someone’s in deep shit, and a deep ache in your stomach says you should leave before you find out who.
He lumbers up the curbside and you audibly gasp as you notice he has a handgun strapped tight across his thigh. What really takes your attention, however, is the flash of steel clipped to his belt. A tactical knife longer than your forearm sheathed in a crested leather scabbard. Apart from the guards patrolling on site, you’ve never seen any other weapons up close. The proximity alone raises your heartbeat, a mixture of fear and curiosity rushes over you as you wonder why this soldier, in particular, carries a handgun so close to their body.
Without a word the men jump to attention, swaying drunkenly from side to side. The smaller of the two approaches locking on to the airman, blood oozing from his nostrils.
“What in the ever-loving fuck is this!” He booms “Peterson, do I have to hose you down like a rabid dog”
“No Staff Sergeant” he burps, the pungent smell of vomit and alcohol wafting from the vapours of his mouth.
You feel your cheeks flush at his mere volume, trying not to jump with each staccato boom of his interrogation. Don’t panic, don’t panic you relay to yourself. Just explain what happened, you’re not in trouble. You haven’t done anything wrong. Squinting your eyes to adjust to the headlights you search for some sort of way out of this mortifying scenario.
“Are you inebriated Shitbird?” he yells a mist of spit dusting onto Peterson's face.
“Ineb…inebriat? Staff Sargeant” he stammers flicking his head to prevent the blood from his nose trickling down his top lip.
Now looming down onto Airman Peterson's head, eyes freakishly large behind his wide brimmed hat, he repeats “Are you so fucking wasted you don’t know what that means, shit head?”
“Sir, yes I am drunk Sir” Peterson announces to the smirks of his friends.
“Get the fuck out of my sight and back to bricks before I send you to the stockade” he yells “all of you!”. The crack in his voice at the end of ‘you’ is somehow so childishly hilarious at that moment that you let out involuntarily snort in a self-conscious chuckle. The silent taller man snaps his head in your direction, although just a silhouette you can feel the burn of his eyes as he scrutinises you. You bring your hand to your mouth wishing you could sink into the floor and disappear never to be seen again.
“Yes Sir” the four airmen bark in agreement and swiftly exit past the pizza shop in the direction of the inner gate. As they leave a series of awkward laughs disappear into the darkness with them. Now it’s just you, the officers, and your assaulter.
Feeling a chill you realise the novelty of the situation has long gone, what the eff do I say, think THINK!
The Staff Sergeant continues, “Can someone explain to me what in God’s name is going on here?”
In the heavy silence you take your chance to speak up, nervous waves sound as you try to excuse yourself. “Look, I am so sorry” Shit do I say, Sir? Sirs? You contemplate it for a second. “The Airman…um Peterson…was unwell, and I was just trying to make sure he got home alright” shut up, shut up, shut up ”S…Sir?”. Pulling your hands to your arms in comfort, you feel your goose-pricked skin tighten from the chill of the Sergeant’s inspecting glare. Is it fear or nerves? You know this is it, you’re going to get shouted at by at least one of the most terrifying men you’ve ever met. Remembering that time you got called to the Headmasters office for swearing at Ms. Dixon – and subsequent suspension, a worse thought crosses your mind. What if I lose my job! Oh god. If only I’d just gone home when I could.
The larger of the commanders pushes forward, “Not you” he drawls in disdain. Without even looking at you he points his finger, commanding you to shut up and stay put. You don’t know if it’s the gun on his thigh or some sort of mind trick, but you freeze in submission, chest tight, too scared to even breathe. He eclipses the light from the truck with his body as he advances on your aggressor. In the halo of white now lighting his face you can make out his features, a thick 5’o’clock shadow stubbled around a striking moustache, dark curls lay on his forehead. Something else catches your attention, something you can’t quite place at first. The early morning wind picks up, creating a vortex around the small plaza, gathering up leaves and litter as it rises. It’s the smell of his deodorant or cologne, a rich musk mixed with a lilt of whiskey. The fragrance lingers around you, distinctly masculine, a sudden twinge in your belly follows budding wetness in your knickers. Really? You chide your growing schoolgirl crush, a bloom of heat visibly rising to your face as you realise you’re turned on by his icy disregard.
“This is the second call I’ve gotten about you this evening Bryant”, he rumbles at the serviceman now shadowed by his superiors broad frame, “first for assaultin’ a barmaid and now for fightin’ in the God damn street?!” he doesn’t need to raise his voice, a disappointed grumble punctuates his words so perfectly you shift from side to side, feeling scolded in turn. He scrunches his face, bringing his hand to the bridge of his nose.
“Apologize to Staff Sergeant Holmes, Cadet” he orders, his deep voice gravely and fatigued. Something in his tone tells you this is not the first time Bryant has fucked up in his charge.
Bryant turns, ego bruised but still at full attention to the man beside him. “I am very sorry Staff Sergeant, Sir.”
“I am disappointed in your behaviour on my base Son. Hardly becoming of an Officer in training. Given the circumstances, I will let Captain Syverson decide how best to penalize you” Holmes starts, a smirk on his smug face. “But!” He cuts, chin to chin with the Cadet “If I see you as much as piss in my direction I will gladly PT you until you’re shitting blood for a week. Do you understand Son?”
“Yes, Sir!” Bryant jolts. Satisfied, the Staff Sergeant shares a confirmatory nod with the Captain and silently turns back toward the truck. A series of revs signal his departure, and the truck fades from view.
“You fuckin’ idiot Bryant” The captain throws his hands to his hips. You can’t help but notice how large they are, the pads of his thick fingers drum into the woven band of his belt as he contemplates what action to take. “Are you purposefully tryin’ to make us look bad?” He grimaces as Bryant bursts into raucous laughter. Am I bloody invisible?
“Come on Sy, that was fucking funny, you should have seen that guy's nose”.
“Shut the fuck up Bryant. Apologize to…” he finally turns, taking you in with a pained inhale. “What’s your name darlin’?”
You step back at his sudden change, Darlin’? Who the fuck does this guy think he is? I am NOT your Darlin’ Grunt. The words you wished you could say, that is if you weren’t so scared of him. “It’s Y/N” you barely manage to get your words out. Searching the Captain's face you try to determine just how much trouble you are in. “Look I need to leave, my permit runs out in…”, you check your watch, “Fuck, I have to get off the base”.
“I’ll make sure you get back to the gate, OK?” he raises his finger again, a sign to stay while he deals with Bryant. He turns a frosty gaze toward the Cadet. His chest rises as he takes his beret in hand wringing it between enormous palms.
“Apologise to Y/N Cadet” he starts, louder than before. Bryant quickly reassumes his attention, clearly, the Captain is not playing buddy tonight.
Turning towards you he spits out his best non-apology, “Y/N I am so sorry you’re a CUNT” his words are full of spite, his eyebrows dance up and down in insult as he mocks you.
“Bryant!” The Captain smacks the cadet upside his shaved head, the slap reverberating in the still of the dark.
“Fuck! I am very SORRY” he virtually shouts, “I am sorry for bothering you” His eyes meet the floor, cracked like a scolded child”
“Right, now stop pettin’ the fuckin’ wildlife, are we clear Cadet?” The Captain orders back, his eyes boring a hole into Bryant’s drooping head. You shift uncomfortably on your feet, Just what exactly is that meant to mean?
“You’re lucky I don’t call the MP’s out this late.” He grumbles turning back to glance at you. You can’t control the shudder from your core as the cold of the night blankets your bare arms, or was it nerves still? “We are guests on this base and in this country” The Captain continues, “I’m takin’ your off base privileges for a month, you can spend your nights on CQ duty” He smirks content with his judgment as Bryant shakes his head to the floor, a whispered curse under his tongue. “FINE” he snarls, “0600 for write up, you can face the Wing Commander”.
“Yes Sir!” Bryant complies through gritted teeth.
“Right, now fuck off” he breaks his gaze from the dejected Cadet and steps forward to you. Placing his beret back on his head, he combs back the dark curls rebelling from the thick gel covering the rest. He presses his fatigues down with a flat hand searching for something in the velcro pockets.. “You said something about a permit?” he smiles, producing a pen from his chest pocket. You can feel the warmth of his breath as he closes in on you. The sheer proximity of his frame making your knees weak.
“Sure, it’s in my car.” You squeeze past the Captain, “it’s just here” you point to the dark at the back of the plaza and make your escape. “Look am I in trouble…becau…” you turn expecting him to be where you were just stood. “Fuck!” you jump, “you’re really quiet?!”. He simply chuckles, cocking his head at you. Laughing awkwardly you hope he doesn’t sense just how nervous he’s making you. Unlocking the passenger door with the key, you lean in to reach past the steering wheel. “I mean I’m just a barmaid…it’s not a big deal, we get arseholes like that most weekends” you ramble searching for the slip of paper in the dark.
“Vulgar Display of Power?” you hear him mutter behind you.
“Sorry?” you look from his pointed hand to the box of tapes spilling onto the footwell.
“You like metal?” he probes.
“Oh yeah I suppose. I like a lot of music, depends on how I feel that day”, You hear a soft ‘tsk’ behind you and glance back. He’s taking in the view of you, one knee on the passenger seat, bent at the waist, struggling forward.
“I mean there’s also a lot of shit I listen to in there, boy bands, Pop-y stuff” you remark, finally finding the paper that had slipped under the glass of the windscreen. “Shania Twain…”.
Pulling yourself back and tugging your jeans up – you cover what you assume was distracting him, the back of your thong. “Here” you stretch your hand to his and pass the piece of paper, he scribbles something on the back, turning to the light of the streetlamp to see better.
“All set Darlin’” he arrogantly pushes the paper back into your hand, the heat from his fingers brushing against your frozen knuckles.
“Thanks, for this”, you raise the paper between you and force a smile tucking the slip into your jeans pocket. “And for, you know, not kicking me off base”.
“Still time for that Doll’” he teases looking at his watch, “you have 9 minutes” stepping back and disappearing around the corner of the bar. His deep voice carries in the dark “Now get! Before I change my mind” he echoes from the shadow.