Dating WH

Dating sites are a ridiculous and time consuming way to meet someone. I feel I would have a better chance meeting someone in a grocery store. carolo. April 19, 2019 at 7:52 am. The title should be “Why Dating (period) over 50 doesn’t work”. I’ve been divorced since I was in my early 40’s. I’m on my 3rd relationship since my divorce ... Online dating presents an effective solution to a serious problem. Browsing profiles isn’t nearly as time-consuming (or daunting) as mixing with people in a social context. Statistics suggest ... Nicolle Wallace and her husband of 14 years are getting a divorce, and she's reportedly dating one of her show's regular contributors. The longtime host of MSNBC's 'Deadline: White House' is ... Chloe Carmichael, PhD 'Dr Chloe' Carmichael, PhD, is a relationship therapist in New York City, author of Dr Chloe's 10 Commandments of Dating, and proud member of WH's advisory board. Online dating where you can buy & sell first dates. 100% free for attractive singles. Join now, and go on a first date today, guaranteed. Featured on CNN, NBC, & FOX News Dating.com is the Finest Global Dating Website In The World. Connect With Local Singles And Start Your Online Dating Adventure! Enjoy Worldwide Dating with Thrilling Online Chats And More! Online Dating at Match.com. Every year, hundreds of thousands of people find love on Match.com. Match.com pioneered the Internet dating industry, launching in 1995 and today serves millions of singles in 24 countries.Match.com continues to redefine the way single men and single women meet, flirt, date and fall in love, proving time and again that you can make love happen through online dating ... Mentioning something yummy-sounding works just as well on dating apps. In fact, dating app Hinge discovered girls are 40% more likely to reply to messages about food. Here’s a short, delicious sounding message that’s perfect for a dating app: First Message Strategy #4: Get Personal. It’s basic human nature to love talking about yourself.

DatingWhileDeadInside

2019.12.13 15:27 lightraebrown DatingWhileDeadInside

Dating While Dead Inside is a community for those struggling with dating in the modern world, whether it's online or in person dating. Share your dark humor, insights, fails, epic triumphs, or whatever your dead heart desires! Giving advice is discouraged unless the poster has asked. Let's all have a laugh at our misery!
[link]


2020.09.23 07:48 ZhangKaiTui Fresh install kde plasma, sound does not work

Hi, so my sound does not work at all.
Devices are found, however they don’t seem to function at all.
Machine is a brand new gen 7 x1 carbon
pulseaudio-git is not found when I tried following other peoples advice installing it (there was a fix for no sound in another thread)
Strange bug? F1 key backlight is always on (the mute button), it will not turn off, even after rebooting it turns back on. Clicking it shows mute/unmute on screen, but does nothing nor turns off light.
inxi -Fxi
Host: joseph-20qd001tus Kernel: 5.8.6-1-MANJARO x86_64 bits: 64 compiler: N/A Desktop: KDE Plasma 5.19.5 Distro: Manjaro Linux Machine: Type: Laptop System: LENOVO product: 20QD001TUS v: ThinkPad X1 Carbon 7th serial: Mobo: LENOVO model: 20QD001TUS v: SDK0J40697 WIN serial: UEFI: LENOVO v: N2HET51W (1.34 ) date: 06/08/2020 Battery: ID-1: BAT0 charge: 45.2 Wh condition: 53.6/51.0 Wh (105%) model: SMP 5B10W13931 status: Discharging CPU: Topology: Quad Core model: Intel Core i5-8265U bits: 64 type: MT MCP arch: Kaby Lake rev: C L2 cache: 6144 KiB flags: avx avx2 lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx bogomips: 28808 Speed: 700 MHz min/max: 400/3900 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 700 2: 700 3: 700 4: 700 5: 700 6: 700 7: 700 8: 700 Graphics: Device-1: Intel UHD Graphics 620 vendor: Lenovo driver: i915 v: kernel bus ID: 00:02.0 Device-2: IMC Networks Integrated Camera type: USB driver: uvcvideo bus ID: 1-8:2 Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.20.8 driver: intel unloaded: modesetting resolution: 1920x1080~60Hz OpenGL: renderer: Mesa Intel UHD Graphics 620 (WHL GT2) v: 4.6 Mesa 20.1.7 direct render: Yes Audio: Device-1: Intel Cannon Point-LP High Definition Audio vendor: Lenovo driver: sof-audio-pci bus ID: 00:1f.3 Sound Server: ALSA v: k5.8.6-1-MANJARO Network: Device-1: Intel Cannon Point-LP CNVi [Wireless-AC] driver: iwlwifi v: kernel port: 2000 bus ID: 00:14.3 IF: wlp0s20f3 state: up mac: f8:ac:65:dd:da:4c IP v4: 10.0.0.168/24 type: dynamic noprefixroute scope: global IP v6: 2601:645:102:c6f0::91b3/128 type: dynamic noprefixroute scope: global IP v6: 2601:645:102:c6f0:8277:d978:eea2:b29d/64 type: dynamic noprefixroute scope: global IP v6: fe80::7eec:97f8:6977:1484/64 type: noprefixroute scope: link Device-2: Intel Ethernet I219-V vendor: Lenovo driver: e1000e v: 3.2.6-k port: efa0 bus ID: 00:1f.6 IF: enp0s31f6 state: down mac: 00:2b:67:ab:3d:28 WAN IP: 73.170.203.218 Drives: Local Storage: total: 238.47 GiB used: 18.55 GiB (7.8%) ID-1: /dev/nvme0n1 vendor: Western Digital model: PC SN730 SDBQNTY-256G-1001 size: 238.47 GiB Partition: ID-1: / size: 233.43 GiB used: 18.55 GiB (7.9%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/nvme0n1p2 Swap: Alert: No Swap data was found. Sensors: System Temperatures: cpu: 44.0 C mobo: N/A Fan Speeds (RPM): cpu: 0 Info: Processes: 220 Uptime: 1h 55m Memory: 7.46 GiB used: 2.41 GiB (32.4%) Init: systemd Compilers: gcc: N/A Packages: 1214 Shell: Bash v: 5.0.18 inxi: 3.1.05
Please let me know what else I can provide! Much appreciated!!!
submitted by ZhangKaiTui to ManjaroLinux [link] [comments]


2020.09.22 17:35 Omarion93 what do if there's No response in more than 24 hours post first meet.

Hello everyone.
Story goes: I matched with this girl on tinder and we hit it off really well and she was really pushing the convo more than me which surprised me to say the least, and 4 days in I asked if we could meet for a coffee and we did, it was really nice we enjoyed our time and when it ended she gave me a hug and we went our ways, later that day I sent a message asking if I could follow her on Instagram (Forgot to ask in person) she read the message but hasn't responded, I thought she was busy or thinking about it but now it's been 24 hours and during she updated her tinder Bio, my question is should I send a message apologising for asking so forwardly ? and to who's gonna ask, what's keeping me hopeful is the fact that she didn't unmatch because that would've deleted the conversation and matching entirely.
Don't be afraid to be as brutally honest as possible because I would love to learn what I need to do better.
PS: I wasn't going into this for One night stands nor am I for them.
this is the link to the latest messages exchanged after the meet (not using the word date because when I asked i didn't specify it and Idk what do dates even look like)
https://ibb.co/qWhYv2W
submitted by Omarion93 to Tinder [link] [comments]


2020.09.21 23:29 sensi_throwaway Came across a job posting that really irked me. Am I being too sensitive?

Job Description
THE ROLE
Customer Service Agents get yelled at by moronic customers. Customer Service Agents mindlessly mash keyboards to regurgitate answers found in the FAQ. Customer Service Agents memorize corporate policies and blame the handbook when all else fails. Customer Service Agents check the clock every eight seconds until it's time to go home.
If you clicked this job posting thinking that a "Customer Experience Representative" sounded familiar - that it sounded like the dozens of suffocating, braindead "Customer Service" jobs you've worked in the past - go ahead and close this tab. The job isn't right for you.
THE ENVIRONMENT
Still here? Excellent. Let's fast-forward a couple of months. You're sitting in the world's most ergonomic chair, staring at dual LG 34" Ultrawides. As you and your team get into a rhythm for the day, the sound of Cherry MX Blue switches fire in harmony all around you. You just finished meticulously inspecting a draft email with the findings of your latest project: an end-to-end analysis on how to achieve 2-4 day delivery in a historically unreachable emerging market. Having once again excelled where peers of your past would have faltered, you allow yourself a moment of calm triumph before jumping back into the Zendesk inbox.
The energy of your environment comes to a still as you don your noise-cancelling Sony WH-1000MX3 headphones. You pound an espresso and are ready to crush some more emails. The hours feel like minutes as the Zendesk inbox approaches zero for the second time in the day. You pause to survey the mezzanine. To your left, two colleagues inspect a smartphone that won't come out for another three months. To your right, you spot the VP of Customer Experience going head-to-head in a round of billiards against the CEO as they contemplate how to more effectively engage our millions of social media followers. You make eye contact with a fellow Customer Experience Rep. The darting of his MX Master 2S comes to a halt as he gestures for you to come over and provide feedback on the dbrand post, announcing the release of the next limited edition skin. You quickly check the inbox and crush one last email to hit zero.
Not so fast. You're not there yet. To make this dream a reality - to get the opportunity to maintain our world-class brand reputation and enhance the experience for our millions of customers worldwide, you're going to have to prove yourself. Make it past the gate and your future self won't be able to thank you enough. Let's see if you've got what it takes...
THE CHARACTERISTICS
- Agile: You're nimble. You're adaptable. You thrive in an environment where priorities can change in an instant. - Analytical: Your decisions are driven by only one thing: data. You continue to master all the tools necessary to surface insights. - Collaborative: You enjoy purposeful meetings. You value the contributions of your coworkers as much as those of your CEO. - Curious: You're eager to learn new concepts and master new skills. There's no useless tool in your arsenal. - Disciplined: You never allow the details to slip, understanding that every bit of minutiae forms the bigger picture. - Enthusiastic: You exhibit a contagious passion for providing standout customer experiences. - Innovative: You develop new approaches to complex problems. - Perfectionist: You persist until the smallest detail has been optimized. You know nothing less than 100%. - Persistent: You've never failed. You've only experienced speed bumps on your path to success. - Reliable: You live up to both verbal and written agreements. You can be trusted to work effectively, without oversight.
THE RESPONSIBILITIES
- Providing customers with an immaculate pre-purchase and post-purchase experience via our Zendesk customer experience platform. - Surfacing data from the goldmine that is our Customer Experience (CX) platform - identifying trends, patterns and opportunities, then using those insights to drive positive changes within the company. - Engaging with fans and customers on various social mediums - pioneering a new model for enhancing the customer experience. - Crafting engaging, on-brand copy for social and our website. - Keeping up to date with other departments by attending meetings and habitually checking the company's internal communication platform. - Contributing to and furthering our culture of excellence.
THE QUALIFICATIONS
If you find a box you can't check, stop reading and look for a company who demands less from their CX team. - A degree, diploma, or a wealth of experience in Customer Service. - Impeccable spelling and grammar - you're a strong, confident, and exacting writer with a mastery of the English language. - A robust communication style - you have exceptional written and verbal communication skills. - Detail-oriented, self-sufficient, resourceful, organized, and proactive. - The instinct to help teammates thrive and the openness to learn from their experiences. - The ability to solve complex problems through the use of logic and Google. - Commitment to long-term growth and learning opportunities. - Insights and engagement with the current state of internet culture and smartphone technology.
THE MOMENT OF TRUTH
The job starts at $42,000 per year with health, dental, and vision benefits. We're located a few minutes west of Pearson Airport. Early morning, evening, and weekend availability will be required.
Still think you have what it takes to thrive in our agile, high-growth, fast-paced environment?
To be perfectly honest, we doubt it.
submitted by sensi_throwaway to recruitinghell [link] [comments]


2020.09.21 21:38 javenmc11 The worst experience I have had ever. Playing online TTRPG THIS is SUPER Long full with typos

Some background information: I am really new to TTRPGs I have played like a couple of times before this particular group and I loved it and after this time I'm pretty sure I will never put myself out there to look for another group anymore lol.
Soo I found this post on LFG and I told the DM that I was new and would love to participate if they would be ok with walking me through a lot of things I didn't know. The guy seemed nice and invited me. I was the first to join and then waited for him to find other players. Most of the people that came were new also, but we had a couple of really experienced people to even it out. I didn't have a character and a lot of people helped all the new people in making their character. I had this totally cool character design that ends up just backfiring on me in the end.
PRE 1ST SESSION
As the group was getting to know each other there were a ton of really really weird dark jokes being thrown around mainly from the DM and his one friend that he added. Ex: There was a joke about throwing a pregnant wife down the stairs instead of getting an abortion, another one was that was ongoing because it went with this characters back story that he was disgusted with childbirth and the DM would go on like 4 min rants just talking about this character not liking childbirth and calling women that are giving birth disgusting often dropping the wh*re word with filthy, etc. , There were a lot more examples I don't remember, but along the same lines. I really don't d=find the jokes that are being made funny which is weird I usually really like dark comedy, but the things and the way they were saying those things just weren't coming off well at all. I shrugged them off along with 2 other people that were also new that noted that they weren't super comfortable with the jokes being made.

getting closer with to session 1 date the DM would start making jokes like if you disagreed with him your character would die, or you would instantly get into a fight. Instead of naming himself DM he named himself "You God". Obviously I thought this was a joke and never thought that he would control something in-game for pure ulterior motives.

Also something to add is that I made a joke in requiring every person in the groups oppinon on what my characters name should be out of two options I already had and at the end of everyone being invested I changed it to something totally different because I thought that it was funny... and I though that it was obviously a joke to everyone that was there. This is going to be brought up later on.
P.S after this, I start getting jokes made at my expense. Calling me a p*ssy because I am a cat person in-game. And other insults, but there was a weird amount of hostility getting aimed towards me. I honestly till this day don't know why I think the DM and some other people would hang out in voice a lot and maybe they would talk about not likeing me which is a leap because I LITERALLY haven't talked a lot of shared a lot about me in the time that we have been there.

1ST SESSION
During the session every decision I was able to make lead me to a path where I couldn't control a single thing that was going to happen to my character.
The DM tells me I need supplies and I need to get into a town or else I won't survive too much longer. So I sneak into the town (I don't think my character being a rakashan would have been allowed in) I score pretty high and the stealth roll and succeed. I try to look for a market except all stores are closed shut and no one is out. I try to get water from a well and I do that and I would have been sick from a plague if I didn't somehow get a super lucky roll against it. the other group members are in the town for different reasons and are in the vicinity of my area. Something to add is that A lot of the other players are being openly hostile towards my character for no reason. In the story we are supposed to be a group that meets and then get together to solve this overall problem. I didn't know there was going to be PvP or else I wouldn't have been part of this, but a couple players didn't like my in game character and I had no reason as to why unless maybe it was correlated to out of game things. but I am getting followed by another character with this hand on this sword ready to attack me FOR NO REASON. So my goal that the DM gave me is that my character needs food and supplies everything is closed and locked so I try to go into a totally different part of town so that I could maybe look around in a house for supplies. I tell him that I want to go somewhere where they wont be able to see me and know what Im doing because at this point this player character is likely to kill me which Im still at a loss of words for. he lets me go and I break the window to get in and everyone hears me instantly... no need to make a perception role or anything and they all chase me down for some reason. While inside the house I look for food and if there is anyone there mind you I am not there to kill or hurt anyone I am just looking for supplies. The DM says there is an elf girl hiding and requires that I attack her. Because my rakashan is racial enemies with elves. Idk how anything works so I just listen. this elf is a little girl and I would have hoped that I a full gown cat wouldn't have to attack a child, but I had no choice. I also have a berserker edge so after I take damage I lose all train of thought and can only attack, plus my default rakashans are bloodthirsty which I was under the idea that all that means is that if I am attacking someone I would take a limb or something with me. I am losing the fight with the little girl I am trying to not kill her with all my limited options like not taking out my weapon lol. and not using any rolls to take less damage from her. The other players come in the house easily even though there was only a window to come in from and they instantly attack me and the one that is attacking is of course the one that has been showing so much hostility towards me out of game and in game and he is falling all his rolls so hard. He is rolling like 5 rolls for idk why but is failing all of them and I laugh because THIS IS FUNNY and the DM saying because I laughed he is going to let him re roll again and this time out of a totally of 6 rolls he ends up knocking me out and me bleeding to death. WHile I am knocked out and bleeding to death another character that has been a totally douchbag out and in game robs my characters body and the dude that killed me is one of two people with healing things and chooses to not heal me. luckily the one guy that hasn't been a dick is there and heals me and ties me up. Players are unconscious for a full day with they basically die like I did and so I will have no actions or dialog for a full day which is the rest of this session and probably more so I just leave.

POST 1ST SESSION

I send maybe like 3 messages saying wow you guys really brutally attacked me and robbed me. and plotting my revenge when if I survive mostly for jest and in character threats. I also say you are lucky you were able to re roll your attack. and that is mostly it. I do get some really negative responses from the person that robed and the person that killed me and the DM. Your such a pussy or stfu your tied up and bleeding. and other things I cant remember. BUT I REPEAT that is all I said. there has been some convos with me and the DM mostly me asking what I can and can not do. because I AM NEW. and there are times when he says I can do something, but I have to do so under his terms to which I would ask why or what about this for the sole reason of trying to understand more things about this game, but he has came and responded thinking that I was upset to not get something my way to which I would say I am fine with taking more minuses on roles I just want to know why.
Any way after the first session he send this message to me:
"so yea based on your performance last game as a player and as a character a lot of the group actually sees you as a problem how you acted during the game when not getting your way and the whole trolling the chat a few days ago a lot of the group aren't fans of you so Friday you have one chance to make them see differently"
*the trolling the chat part is my joke from before about wondering what I should change my name to and then not listening to then views of the people I asked... as a joke
Getting this message actually felt pretty bad. Mostly because this explains some of the players hostility towards me and explains why they were acting a certain way to me. It also felt bad because I have no idea why I would get this message sent to me. It meant I wasn't liked lol and I shouldn't care because the people they were aren't people I wanted to like me, but I out of anger I responded and said goodbye to the group and left.

MY response (probably taken down but I sent my response into general chat)
(@)everyone Your saying that me trolling the group to decide my characters name as a joke has made me a problem. It was pretty obviously a joke i figured everyone knew that. Also it was very minor thing to discuss about. I was having a laugh but your saying that it irriated people. Seeing as its okay to joke about pregnancy and periods and birth being distgusting and throwing ur wife down some stairs(something i definitly heard). But me joking and trolling about what my name should be has put me in a bad light with the group. "How you acted during game When I am not getting my way" I dont know what your talking about actually. Out of game I have been quite salty because one that whole scenario that happened was out of my control. It was by my character design that it happened I am just glad I ended up living. Out of game I have exppressed being salty because of the fact that you let more re roll because I laughed and was joking with the rolls he has gotten. In the chat rn there all probably more then 20 messages making fun of me and calling me a pussy or todd or saying "at least im not tied up and bleeding". Honestly more then 20. From you, mori and lucky in particular. Something I havent expressed was how it has felt very biased it the situations ghat were happening mainly towards me. Example 1 lucky gets into a fight with 3 guards you let him keep re rolling because in your words " I dont want your character to die in the first session" but you ok with my character almost dieing. Example two you let moro re roll to hit me. The way you and mori and lucky talk about me is already shitty. I take it and assume you guys joke wierd, but seeing your message makes me realize that you guy actually have a problem with me. You have gotten mad at me for not knowing things when THIS IS MY FIRST TIME PLAYING . But not with the others. I can honestly not recall what I have done or said to make you guys dislike me so much. I have cracked jokes with you guys and been preety polite in voice coms. Another example of everyone being aggressive towards me is how mori played towards me. I really dont know what I did to cause you guys to not like me. Maybe the name troll started it seeing as you guys came up with todd then. Which I may add idc about but calling me todd in game and not my character name kind of ruins it for me the imersion at least, but you guys dont care.
Any ways I dont really care for playing another session to get on good grace with you guys if you dislike me already. Im surprised you didnt jus
submitted by javenmc11 to rpghorrorstories [link] [comments]


2020.09.21 14:28 markedthree My Nvidia GPU's temperature is so high without doing anything

Hi here is my system.
➜ inxi -Fxz System: Kernel: 5.4.64-1-MANJARO x86_64 bits: 64 compiler: gcc v: 10.2.0 Desktop: KDE Plasma 5.19.5 Distro: Manjaro Linux Machine: Type: Laptop System: ASUSTeK product: X510UQ v: 1.0 serial:  Mobo: ASUSTeK model: X510UQ v: 1.0 serial:  UEFI: American Megatrends v: X510UQ.309 date: 08/08/2018 Battery: ID-1: BAT0 charge: 12.8 Wh condition: 21.7/42.1 Wh (51%) model: ASUSTeK ASUS Battery status: Not charging CPU: Topology: Dual Core model: Intel Core i7-7500U bits: 64 type: MT MCP arch: Amber Lake rev: 9 L2 cache: 4096 KiB flags: avx avx2 lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx bogomips: 23209 Speed: 700 MHz min/max: 400/3500 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 700 2: 700 3: 700 4: 700 Graphics: Device-1: Intel HD Graphics 620 vendor: ASUSTeK driver: i915 v: kernel bus ID: 00:02.0 Device-2: NVIDIA GM108M [GeForce 940MX] vendor: ASUSTeK driver: nvidia v: 450.66 bus ID: 01:00.0 Device-3: IMC Networks VGA UVC WebCam type: USB driver: uvcvideo bus ID: 1-6:4 Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.20.8 driver: modesetting,nvidia resolution: 1920x1080~60Hz OpenGL: renderer: GeForce 940MX/PCIe/SSE2 v: 4.6.0 NVIDIA 450.66 direct render: Yes Audio: Device-1: Intel Sunrise Point-LP HD Audio vendor: ASUSTeK driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel bus ID: 00:1f.3 Sound Server: ALSA v: k5.4.64-1-MANJARO Network: Device-1: Intel Wireless 8265 / 8275 driver: iwlwifi v: kernel port: e000 bus ID: 02:00.0 IF: wlp2s0 state: up mac:  Drives: Local Storage: total: 1.82 TiB used: 388.08 GiB (20.8%) ID-1: /dev/sda vendor: Seagate model: ST1000LM035-1RK172 size: 931.51 GiB ID-2: /dev/sdb type: USB vendor: A-Data model: HD710 PRO size: 931.51 GiB Partition: ID-1: / size: 608.30 GiB used: 388.06 GiB (63.8%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sda6 Swap: Alert: No Swap data was found. Sensors: System Temperatures: cpu: 58.0 C mobo: N/A gpu: nvidia temp: 79 C Fan Speeds (RPM): cpu: 2900 Info: Processes: 184 Uptime: 1h 47m Memory: 11.59 GiB used: 2.42 GiB (20.9%) Init: systemd Compilers: gcc: 10.2.0 clang: 10.0.1 Packages: 1551 Shell: Zsh v: 5.8 inxi: 3.1.05 
This high temperature is affecting my gaming performance
What is causing the high temperature? Any way to fix this?
submitted by markedthree to ManjaroLinux [link] [comments]


2020.09.21 14:01 LordChozo Hindsight is 2020: #10 - Los Endos

from A Trick of the Tail, 1976
Listen to it here!
Around Christmas of 1974, Phil Collins got a call from the head of Artists & Repertoire at Island Records. This was a man with whom Phil was loosely familiar, as the record exec had formerly been a writer for Melody Maker, which had covered Genesis somewhat extensively. Island Records had just signed a new band, and they needed a drummer. Would Phil come and rehearse with them a bit? Genesis were in the midst of The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway Tour but had a few weeks’ holiday, so Phil figured, “Why not?”
Phil: I join them for rehearsals, and we have some fun… They have a singer, but for much of the time there’s nothing for him to do… Nonetheless, I like these guys, and I like the freedom they offer, so I agree to join Brand X on a part-time basis, even though I don’t really know what I’m joining. There are no gigs and only distant rumors of a record. 1
Somehow in that brief time during the winter, those distant rumors quickly crystallize and they manage to actually record an album. They send it off to Island Records, and the exec comes right back: “This is no good. Lose the vocals. Write new stuff.” A blow to egos, perhaps, and then Phil runs off to finish touring The Lamb. By April 1975, The Lamb Tour is back in England and Phil reconnects with the Brand X crew, now having lost a pair of members - including that pesky singer. By May the Genesis tour is over and that band takes a month off before hunkering down to write for their next album. So Phil, ever bored and thus ever busy, dives into Brand X completely.
Phil: When the four of us instrumentalists start playing, Brand X become a whole different thing. These are the days of fusion and jazz-rock, some of which is definitely too noodly and self-indulgent for me. But we will make a few interesting records… 1
Phil spent the next few months bouncing back and forth between Genesis and Brand X, writing with each band. In fact, the Brand X debut album Unorthodox Behaviour was recorded about a month before Genesis went into the studio to lay down A Trick of the Tail. So it’s no surprise at all that Phil found himself in that kind of musical mindset during the Genesis writing sessions; hard to keep those two projects musically distinct in his head, I’d imagine. Especially since Genesis at this time found him being reluctantly pressed into the spotlight as a singer, when all he really wanted to do was bang away at his kit some more.
Phil: I’m happy at the back...I’d rather be in an instrumental band than take over the microphone… At least we’ve written some strong material… 1
Ah, an instrumental band. That would be the life, wouldn’t it? Phil had even championed the idea more than once to his Genesis bandmates, hoping that it might catch on with them.
Phil: Although I loved Pete and still do, my feeling [was], “Well, we’ll just carry on as a four-piece! Forget the vocals, we’ll just carry on as an instrumental four-piece!” It was no slight on him; it was just meant to be the fact that I thought we could just carry on and still do it. And in fact, in doing it, prove to people that we weren’t “Pete’s band.” 2
There was a bit of traction…
Mike: I remember Trick of the Tail, we had a brief. We said, “Let’s try and be a bit more instrumental.” Because we thought, you know, some of our strongest passages in the past without Pete were instrumental moments. 2
...but not enough.
Mike: But of course, as always, you have no control and it’s a heavily vocal album! 2
But Phil can’t quite shake that bug. Doesn’t help that in his spare time he was listening to even more jazz fusion type of stuff.
Phil: It was about ideas and arrangements. I’d heard the Santana album Borboletta, and there’s a tune on it called “Promise Of A Fisherman”. If you’ve got it on your iPod, have a listen and think of “Los Endos”. That’s where it came from – I was more involved in that. 3
So they’re all in there, working up material, and several songs start to emerge.
Mike: A fair amount of the album was from scratch. “Volcano” was just a jam that started, “Squonk” just sort of came on the day, I think… So it was quite sort of live and jamming at that stage. 2
There’s also a track which would eventually get cut from the final album: an emotional vocal piece followed by an Eastern-inspired instrumental jam called “It’s Yourself”. So with these group efforts all coming out and the album’s space beginning to be allocated, Phil can’t resist the urge anymore: for possibly the first time in his Genesis career, he takes charge of a song.
Tony: “Los Endos”, which was a development of “Squonk” and all the other pieces, was an idea which came more from Phil because he was very into jazz/rock... 4
He goes wild on the percussion, just as he’d heard in that Santana tune, and decides to use the three-chord progression from “It’s Yourself” as the basis to play around a bit with everything.
Mike: The three chords it’s based around were part of a soft thing which didn’t make the album. 5
Phil: It was kind of more my baby than anybody else’s. I mean, obviously melodically I’d say, “Go [like this:] dowwww-dowwww-dowww then down-down…” and Tony would sort of make sense of the kind of the humming it. 2
It’s a fun image, picturing “Lt. Junior Grade Collins” dictating melodies to Tony and pushing everyone to build around this core concept. Isn’t this guy supposed to be the affable chap who simply does whatever we tell him to? Who made him the boss? But hey, it’s a feel-good sort of time in Genesis.
Tony: I think we were very confident we could write material that was strong enough. 2
Steve: It is a very 'up' album isn't it? Well, again I was essentially happy and that translates... We were rehearsing [and] as far as I can remember it was summer, and these things do make a difference… If you see any photographs of that time we are all laughing and you can see it is becoming a happy band again. 6
So they open the song with the bit from “It’s Yourself” and base the main thrust of the piece on that same progression; a touch that’s pretty much lost to modernity since they left that song off the album, but oh well. And Phil just tells them, “Hey, go wild!” It’s all about experimenting around this riff, so throw some heat on the fire and really go for it. Mike’s enthused but this isn’t really in his wheelhouse. Tony and Steve though? Completely on board.
Tony: On tracks like “Los Endos” [Steve] and I had been swapping licks and I loved that. It was great to have someone who could come up with ideas and play in harmony and unison. 4
Steve: We all kicked up a storm together with the creation of "Los Endos"! 7
But instead of just rolling along in the speedy vein, how about a variation? The bottom drops out and Tony plays an unhurried top line that’s vaguely reminiscent of the chorus line for “Robbery, Assault and Battery”. When Phil sings the word “battery,” the notes he hits are F, G, and C. Meanwhile, the ascending notes on Tony’s melody in this “breakdown” bit are E♭, G, and C. So it’s not exactly the same thing, and can’t even properly be called a reprise, but hearing even two notes of an earlier chorus melody repeated prominently here brings the mind back to that point. It’s sort of an unintentional reprise-lite, if you will. That said, this keyboard line also happens to be an actual reprise, if rearranged, of "Dance on a Volcano". It's the guitar line of that song's chorus, now switched to Tony's keyboard, slurring away. Sneaky stuff, huh?
Then the drums come back, Mike plays some funky stuff that Phil probably told him to, and we’re off again into congatown. Then another Tony pit stop to dance around three notes where oddly enough I’m also reminded me of “Robbery, Assault and Battery”. There’s not any clear connection anymore based on pitch or melody, but it’s more a rhythmic thing; the rhythm of Tony’s repeated keyboard phrase is identical to the rhythm of the word “robbery” in the chorus of that earlier album tune. So again, not a full-on reprise by any means, but it keeps that earlier tune indirectly in the consciousness.
Now more rapid-fire percussion and more trading licks until it all winds down in a controlled slump. And now, here’s a thought. We’ve already got a whole bunch of improv stuff built around “It’s Yourself”, and whether we meant to or not we’re calling back spiritually to “Robbery, Assault and Battery” as well. Why not just go all the way with this?
Tony: [Phil had] this idea of using all the melodies we had throughout the album and placing them into a slightly different feel to produce a song on its own. 4
Come on back, “Dance on a Volcano”! We’re reprising you for real this time, proper instrumentation and all! But hey Mike, while Steve’s playing that riff, why don’t you throw on some bass pedals? And Tony, maybe a Mellotron choir or something? Let’s really get this full sound thing happening on it this time. And then Steve can play his guitar like it’s a washboard while we change the tonality of the three-note pattern so it sounds all dark and threatening! And then and then and then...uh…
Phil: And then we reprised “Squonk” at the end of it because that kind of gave the album a bit of a bookends feel. 2
Yeah, let’s do “Squonk”! Just the whole bloody main part of it! Why not? We can all embellish the heck out of the thing, make it even stronger sounding than it was before!
In my post on "Squonk" I made the point that starting a track with that much power gave it nowhere to go, and so the rest of the song became an exercise in trying to sustain that oomph. It performs that task about as admirably as anyone could hope for, but nevertheless still feels a little burdened by that weight of expectation. That's not a problem on "Los Endos", where the "Squonk" bit gets to close the song; now the rest of the piece can build up to it, and nothing comes after to detract. Tony and Mike wrote "Squonk" together, but it was Phil who ultimately sussed out the best way to use it.
Phil: It was the first time I thought Genesis played the type of music they’d never played before - American music vaguely in the mold of Weather Report. It stemmed from this rhythmic idea I had. We also worked in some reprises because it was the end of the album, including the reprise of “Squonk” at the end. It was the first time we hit on...I say jazz, but I think we were playing a different type of music on that track. It was still tight. It wasn’t a blowing tune, but it was the first time we’d tried anything in that vein. To me, it was great to do that kind of thing with Genesis rather than playing it with Brand X. 5
If “Dance on a Volcano” was the band starting life after Peter and realizing they’d probably be OK, “Los Endos” is the definitive stamp on the album, the band confidently asserting, “In fact, we’ll be even better.” Phil even throws in an homage to his departed buddy, calling over the strains of “Squonk” with “There’s an angel standing in the sun, freed to get back home!” It’s one final throwback: a lovely goodbye, a mini-reprise of “Supper’s Ready”, a well-wishing for a dude eager to spend some time just being a dad and tending a garden. And yet it’s also a call of independence. “Farewell friend; we need you no longer.”
Mike: I think with A Trick of the Tail we were definitely worried about what came next. We definitely thought, “Will it work?” So we did what we always do, is we said, “Let’s go in and try a bit of writing. See what happens.” 2
Old singer gone, drummer promoted (or demoted, if you'd asked Phil at the time), and now he’s rallying the troops to make what will become arguably the band’s most important live number ever.
Tony: You knew that the first time you played a piece on stage everyone would want to hear the old songs, as they called them, which was the material from the previous album which they hadn’t wanted to hear at all on that album’s tour. But you could introduce the new songs in a way that made them very palatable; you didn’t necessarily have to play a whole string of them one after the other. On the first tour we did after Trick of the Tail we even used “Los Endos” as the end song on that tour, even though it was a new song, and it worked really well. 4
Check this out. This crowd might not have gone in wanting or expecting to hear “Los Endos” as a closer, but they sure weren’t complaining when all was said and done. How could you not put this song in that role? If you’re playing the main songs of the album anyway, then in concert “Los Endos” serves the exact same purpose; you basically get to relive the whole show within that seven minute span of time and go out on the highest of highs.
Tony: I felt A Trick of the Tail produced three exceptional live numbers in “Volcano”, “Squonk”, and “Los Endos”. That was something we really needed. 8
Look at Phil there, back on the kit where he belongs, feeling like he successfully duped the band into letting him drum a little while longer. Dude’s arms are like machine guns. And then over on the percussion side you’ve got Bill Bruford (BROOOOOOOF!) firing off bullets as well. You go to a Genesis show and see this spectacle? Yeah, you’re getting your money’s worth. It was so strong that they basically had to leave it in the set forever. It vanished during the 90s, but came back in 2007, and I’d imagine might come back again next year; to date “Los Endos” has been played 659 times by Genesis in concert, more than any other song we have statistics for. And it deserves every bit of it.
Phil: It’s become over the years one of the long-lasting songs from that album, because it was a great stage song… So that’s always been one of my favorite things on the record, “Los Endos”. 2
Tony: Well “Los Endos” I think works very well. I mean, it certainly turned into a great live piece. It was great fun to play, and I felt it really rounded off the album well. 2
Mike: I think “Los Endos” in a way is quite a special track. It’s becoming more and more special in my mind as time goes on, actually. Because not many bands do a sort of seven minute instrumental with a sort of jazzy feel. And we’re still playing it! 2
Steve:
Let’s hear it from the band!
Phil: It’s more milestones than favorites. Personally I prefer “[Wot] Gorilla”, which is the same kind of thing, but “Los Endos” was the first time we did it. I see it as our little excursion into the world of...I don’t call it jazz-rock. 5
Mike: My only regret [with Phil taking over as singer] was that I would never again play a whole show with Phil on drums. No one could play drums like Phil - he’d play for the song, not for himself - and I missed that to the end. From the drumming point of view, it was never quite the same again live. 9
1. Phil Collins - Not Dead Yet
2. 2007 Box Set
3. Louder Sound, 2016
4. Genesis: Chapter & Verse
5. NME, 1977
6. The Waiting Room, 1997
7. HackettSongs, 2018
8. Trouser Press, 1982
9. Mike Rutherford - The Living Years
submitted by LordChozo to Genesis [link] [comments]


2020.09.21 02:54 TheAusNerd Debris [Part 42]

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<"Dude, I love playing that when I was a kid!"> said Wora exuberantly over video chat. <"I can't believe they still make it.">
Le'quaren, the only friend Wora could name that wasn't perpetually surrounded by criminals and thugs, sat smiling, cradling her newborn in her arms. <"Jell told me it's getting even more popular at the store he frequents, but he's concerned that if his friends find out he plays, he's never going to hear the end of it.">
Wora giggled. She remembered feeling the same way in her youth, spending a solid chunk of the allowance she received from performing chores to buy a pack of cards just for the feeling of anticipation and mystery. It was simpler then, better. Wora thought. <"Hey...">
Today's lunch was a lonely one for Behn. While a significant portion of the women went to have their bi-weekly video calls, she abstained, choosing instead to get in line for food that, without the rest of the prison lining up for their meals and bringing things to a crawl, was comparatively fresh. The food, surprisingly refreshing though it was, was no replacement for Wora's lively demeanour and barbs at the brainless programmes on the television, which the prisoners noted to now be flickering somewhat; the women expected their food to soon take another dip in whatever quality it had left.
At last, and with a tray on which she swore she could see the scrapings from the bottom of the greasy pot in which her meal was cooked, Wora arrived, throwing herself onto the bench beside Behn. The mood was immediately lifted. <"Hey, girl. What'd I miss?">
<"Just some weather boy waffling on about expected wind speeds during Chill Winds. They're gonna be high, but nothing we haven't survived before."> As she heard the young man read the weather report, part of Behn was glad that Arnd apparently spent most of her time in X'rtani House, she would be nice and warm there.
<"Huh. Oh! Did I ever tell you about that one time when my aunt slipped on an ice patch and fell down the stairs of her apartment complex?"> Behn shook her head. <"Yeah. She was fine in the end, nothing more than a few bruises, but she screamed like a damn siren until she hit the floor. A cop came bursting in looking for his buddy's cruiser, muttering that he didn't get a call for a crime in progress! When he saw my aunt, he damn near pissed himself!"> Wora chuckled heartily, and Behn couldn't help but be drawn in. The two women laughed so hard that they missed the opening to that day's episode of MarkWatch.
The pair watched a man too average-looking to form an opinion on confront Mark on a bus, and a thought came to Wora's head. <"Do you have anyone to call on the outside? Friends, family?">
Behn swallowed hard after she removed her gaze from the television and processed the question. <"No. I hadn't noticed I left it all behind until I realized who I was running with. And before you ask: no, I'm not calling my mother."> she clarified, dim resentment on her tongue.
<"You think she would've called by now, given what you've told me.">
<"She's busy doing gods know what with Mark and all that government crap, I wouldn't be surprised if it was years before she called to talk.">
Wora nodded along as only a friend would, recognizing that words were no good here, and returned to her meal.

<"You reckon he couldn't have gone shorter? Show some arm?"> asked Wora in relation to the tailored suit MarkWatch's presenters accurately predicted he had arranged for.
<"Meh, it's probably fashionable where he's from. It's not my business in any case."> replied Behn, squat lifting the weight of the average prisoner in the complex. It was simple. It certainly wasn't a heavy machine gun, two backpacks worth of ammo, malante plate body armor... <'No, gods damn it! You're past that! The violence is no more! Just squat and breathe, Behn.'> She squatted, she breathed, she felt her thighs grow warm with the effort, focusing on that helped her stay in the moment.
<"Behn?">
<"Sorry, I spaced out a bit, what'd you say?">
Wora pointed past Behn, whose gaze followed her friends finger. Four surly women, with enough muscle between them to convince Behn that they could bend the collective population of the prison into thick knots. They closed in and Behn put the barbell back on the rack. She and the quartet's eyes met, and the clear challenge was recognized.
<"So,"> began a X'etish woman who dwarfed the others. <"Miss Ex-Fang here's got 48 lifetimes, eh? Not bad, pint-size."> She giggled, her yellowed and chipped fangs on full display. <"See, there's something about multiple life sentences that I'm sure you know: You step out of line, and you're in solitary.">
<"I'm aware."> replied Behn, knowing exactly where this was going.
<"So then you know that you can't fight anyone, correct?"> the woman sneered, leaning down so her jaw was inches from Behn's face. Behn didn't notice a X'rtani woman slinking out of view.
<"Correct.">
The woman stood back up. <"Good.">
Behn was seized from behind, a second X'rtani clamping her jaw shut <"Don't go crying now."> she taunted. Wora hollered for the guards, only to be grabbed by the jaw and thrown to the ground by the X'eti, who roughly held her face to the floor. Struggle as she might, Wora was helpless and silent in witnessing Behn's right arm being held out by a X'ogan woman, her mouth warped into a savage grin. <"You learn that we're the bosses in this yard right quick, or..."> And with a visceral crunch that turned both Behn and Wora's stomach, the woman bit down on Behn's thumb, removing it at the base. She spat it on the ground and chuckled, her jowls splotched with bloody yellow. Behn, pain and disgust twisting inside her, swayed at the sight of her own blood. Finally, the guards arrived, detaining the perpetrators. Upon her attacker's seizure, gore-induced vomit spilled from Behn's newly unclamped jaw, and she staggered to the floor, lightheaded and queasy.
As the assailants were taken away, a guard administered basic first aid to Behn while calling for a medical team for the two victims. Before long, a team arrived with a mag-lifted bed for Behn, they immediately administered an anesthetic and antibiotics to the wound, and they rushed Behn off to the prison station's medical ward. Wora, her head throbbing, was helped off the ground by the guard who stood beside Behn, and was led from the yard as she explained the altercation.

Wora's impatience was not due to the aches she felt as her injuries were examined in the medical ward.
<"You appear to have a mild concussion and some bruising."> noted the doctor. The guard present relayed this information to her fellow officers in Wora's arm of the prison. <"There's no cure for a concussion but rest and limiting stimulus; no television, no major physical activity, and keep socializing to a minimum for the next few days. I'll have pills regularly sent to your cell to help with pain, and I'll arrange for your meals to be sent to your cell, too. In the meantime, I can provide you with a blindfold and earmuffs to help limit stimulus."> The physician filled out application forms as she spoke. <"You should begin to first see results in a few days, and I'll have you come in for an examination in seven days.">
<"Fine, cool, whatever."> said Wora. <"Is Behn going to be okay?">
<"Your cellmate? Due to patient confidentiality, I can't give that information away. But I'll ask her if it's okay, and we'll go from there.">
<"Yes, please."> Restlessness was thick in her tone.
The doctor blinked at her for a moment, before turning back to her computer. <"Alright. We'll arrange someone to visit you in your cell as soon as possible."> She turned to the guard, handing her the stimulus-limiting headwear. <"Shel, please escort Miss Lakk back to her cell, and be sure to take the quiet routes.">
<"Of course, Doctor. You heard her, get these on you and I'll get you back safe."> the officer held the blindfold and earmuffs out to Wora, who took them begrudgingly.
The blindfold didn't so much as blind Wora, but rather kept her vision dim, which she admittedly appreciated given her injury, the earmuffs too aided in the easing of her headache; they didn't help ease the throbbing she felt from her bruises, though.
When Wora arrived back at her cell, she saw some pills already arranged on her bedside table; they tasted like everything and nothing at the same time, she nearly gagged. After chasing her medication with some water, she slumped down onto the bed and dozed, her body seemingly responding to the doctor's orders.
She later woke with a start as a guard outside her cell called for her attention. <"Miss Kell? Miss Kolr would like to see you in the medical ward, I'm here to escort you.">
Wora didn't miss a beat, immediately following the guard through the passageways prisoners usually only got to see if they were in deep trouble, add-years-onto-your-sentence trouble. All the way, she was thankful for the headwear provided, and was finally deposited into the medical ward after an uneventful journey. A doctor, noticeably armed - it was a prison, after all - directed Wora to Behn's bed.
Behn laid propped up in a hospital bed with her eyes closed, grimacing in pain. Her right arm and hand were held still by braces as a tissue replicator went to work reattaching her thumb with new bone, muscle fibers, and skin weaved from their constituent components coded with her DNA, given in a sample taken from the shredded stump of her thumb. Wora noticed that a small curtain had been set up to block Behn's view of her automated operation.
<"Behn, it's me."> said Wora, sitting by her bedside.
Behn's eyes slowly opened, brightening when her friend came into focus. <"Hey sis. Wh-ugh, what's with the sleepwear?"> she asked sardonically.
<"Concussion, but I'll be fine. How about you?">
<"I should be okay, too. The doc said that this should take just fine, given that it's mostly a reattachment. At best, I'm looking at minor scars.">
Wora raised an eyebrow. <"And at worst?">
<"My body rejects the new tissue, my thumb falls off, and they try again."> Behn explained nonchalantly, as though the sight of such wouldn't result in her puking again.
<"Ah."> Though her tone didn't show it, in truth, Wora was truly relieved that her friend, despite her gruesome injury, was still in high spirits. One question remained, however. <"So, you're looking at a stint in solitary?">
<"Nah, enough of the girls in the yard vouched for me that I'm off the hook this time. I got told that those dry cunts are in lockdown for half a month and their pay's been slashed. Next time they jump someone, they're in solitary for a month, with an extra month for each following attack. And the best part, I now have express permission to defend myself from those four in future."> Behn giggled. <"I mean, so long as I don't break anything.">
<"Oh, thank the gods, I didn't want to lose you."> expressed Wora, not realizing until after she had said it that she said the quiet part out loud.
<"Aww, you would've missed me?"> Behn barbed.
Wora knew there was no backing out now. <"Of course, you dumbass! You're the only cellmate I can name that I've gotten along with.">
Listening to Wora lay herself bare, Behn couldn't remember the last time her presence made someone genuinely happy beyond her deft handling of a firearm. She smiled warmly and extended her uninjured arm toward her friend, placing her hand on Wora's knee. <"Hey, I'm not shut in a hole just yet, so buck up!">
Wora sighed, content. <"You're right. Just don't go scaring me like that again, okay?">
<"Sure, sis.">
<"So, how long did the doc say you'd be stuck here for?">
<"They reckon they'll see if this'll take in a day or so. If it does, I'm free to go. Well, as free as I can be on this rock, at least. I'll be back to see your lack of modesty again soon.">
Wora's expression grew smug. <"You know you love it."> she mocked.
Behn sniggered, transitioning into full on laughter when Wora mockingly began lifting her shirt. Wora joined in, letting the joy of the moment wash away any lingering doubts and worries. Now she knew that she, her friend, and their bond, was safe.
~~~
The bus glode smoothly past shop-lined streets as Mark stared out the window, attempting to map out the city in his mind while wondering where he could get a set of headphones built for his ears. It stopped outside a family-owned grocer to let waiting passengers board. Before the bus could take off again, a thin man carrying a basket of food approached Mark.
<"What're you doing here?"> he asked belligerently.
Mark was shaken from his window watching by the man's question. "Can I help you?" he asked politely.
<"This bus isn't built for you."> the basket-carrier stated with certainty. <"Get off.">
Mark blinked. "... Pardon?"
The man's already scowl-creased face scrunched further, his jowls parted just enough for a thin white line of fangs to be visible between his jaws. <"Are you mocking me? Get off the damn bus!"> he insisted, shooting a finger at the side door.
Mark knew then what was happening. He knew it would happen eventually, but he wasn't entirely prepared for the sensation of the event itself. Still, he retained his composure. "Please leave me be, sir." he said firmly.
The man, clearly knowing that he wasn't going to get his way alone, stormed up to the driver's seat and demanded Mark to be removed from the vehicle. <"Buddy, the guy ain't causin' no trouble. You leave 'em alone or you're walkin'."> the driver said matter-of-factly.
The man, finally understanding his place in the proceedings, shot a nasty look Mark's way, and stepped off the bus.

"That guy on the bus surprised me. I've noticed that nobody here's all that subtle, but nobody's been that forward thus far." said Mark, recounting yesterday's encounter with a concerned citizen on public transport.
Rilk'r, Mark's companion at the cafeteria table, nodded along to the human's retelling, aware of the encounter in question from today's episode of MarkWatch. <"Don't let 'em get to you. You really shouldn't have to put up with that shit, but if it's just a handful of belligerent dicks, you don't have much to worry about. You stay the course, and they'll get over it eventually.">
While Mark wasn't entirely convinced, stressing over factors out of one's control did little good. "Yeah."
The conversation paused as the two men dug into their lunches, picking up again when Rilk'r asked: <"So, how's that gym treating you?">
"Pretty well, actually. It's a bit stuffy, but I can't complain too much. I imagine you learned about that from the news?"
Rilk'r looked hurt. <"The news? I helped put the damn thing together!">
Mark choked on his water, drawing eyes from employees that he had hoped would be used to his presence by now. "Wait, really? You never told me!"
<"I like my customers to leave their reviews after they've put my work to the test."> Rilk'r said smugly.
"Heh. Well, I've certainly seen worse equipment." He would never forget that one squat rack in Anytime Fitness that fell apart the instant he re-racked his bar.
Rilk'r chuckled. <"Glowing praise, that.">
And once again, the two men put their chat on hold while they ate. Rilk'r cleaned his tray before Mark, to neither's surprise, and waved as he returned to work. Uns'la pointed a finger gun as she linked up with Rilk'r, Mark returned it. As his tray neared empty, Arnd, who too was using the break in the day's lesson to eat her fill, came up to the table.
<"You think you could pick up the pace a bit? We still have the last decade of the Crisis of the Peaks to cover, and I don't want it spilling into my free day."> she asked, the tapping of her foot on the tiled floor akin to a metronome with no patience for rhythm.
"What do you think I'm doing?" replied Mark, now shoveling his gravy-soaked wobunil chunks into his mouth at as fast a pace as their size allowed. Before long, and with many painful attempts to swallow mouthfuls in excess of his throat's capacity, Mark emptied his tray. He also made a mental note to, if he ever made it back to Earth, tell Percy about that time he almost took too much meat for his throat to handle, giggling childishly to himself.
After he quickly gulped down water from a paper cup, Mark was ready to return. Arnd watched impatiently as Mark nodded to the guard stationed outside the bar, with her impatience morphing to simple annoyance when Mark paused to pull out his data pad. This annoyance turned to frustration when Mark turned on his heels and walked back toward her.
"I gotta go, T'aro wants me in R&D immediately. We'll pick up with Crisis when I get back." And with that, Mark was off toward the elevators and Arnd was left watching him go.
Jan'u came up to her, licking his jowls clean of gravy. <"What's he up to now?">
Arnd deflated. <"Doesn't matter. Come on, Nelert's Bones is out and I wanna see if it lives up to the trailers.">

Beneath the mountain, with K'ul stalwart by his side, T'aro paced, second-guessing whether this was a good idea.
Yesterday, as the moon shone as a silver crescent high above the city, T'aro oversaw the first test of a circular bone saw attachment to F'ejen's shield-focused surgical tool. The device whirred, the multitude of tiny energy blades blurring together to form a single, uniform disc of light at the tip of the apparatus. With precision, F'ejen lowered the device down on to, in absence of replicated human bone, a plate of what T'aro dubbed 'Malante Squared', a substance that acted as a less refined, less dense x'erren attempt at N.L.N.A, the substance that comprised the hull of Mark's detached cockpit. Upon contact, the saw squealed as it battled its target, but both it and F'ejen held firm, and the doctor soon excavated a near-perfect square from the mass. A few moments after F'ejen shut the device off, he was told that this attachment too passed safety and stability tests. F'ejen nodded proudly at this victory and ticked off yet another test on his notepad he pulled from his breast pocket; thus far, among other tools, he had successfully tested: a scalpel with adjustable length, a needle tip, a drill, and scissors.
F'ejen stepped out of the testing room, discarding his gloves and shoes, and loosing his ears. <"Well, what's next on the docket?"> he asked, softly massaging his aching ears.
<"Staples. Although how you plan on making this work, I have no clue."> replied T'aro, looking over the list of planned tools.
Listening to T'aro launch into further detail of the task's complications, F'ejen couldn't help but think. <"So, remind me; Mark's more or less on your side now?">
<"He promised that the antics were over, so ostensibly, yes.">
<"... Then shouldn't you tell him about all this?"> asked F'ejen, gesturing to the testing room where a team was examining the surgical apparatus.
T'aro looked at the doctor in stunned disbelief. <"Out of the question. If you've read Mark's contract, and I know you have, you'll know he has the legal right to shut this entire operation down at any time he so wishes. The instant he sees us developing this technology, I've no doubt in my mind that his first act would be to demand that development ceases. His second would be to demand a release from his contract, which is also his legal right.">
<"I take it then he still doesn't trust us?">
<"He said so himself."> said T'aro pointedly.
<"And do you think he'll trust us any more if we continue keeping secrets?"> questioned F'ejen, turning to face the administrator.
T'aro turned in kind. <"I am the director of this project and I will not be questioned.">
<"I have been a surgeon since before you came of age."> the doctor stated firmly, letting his experience drive his words. <"I have worked at many hospitals and have tended to very many patients. The longer you lie to a patient, even if the lie is entirely for the patient's benefit, the harsher they react when the truth comes out. When Mark tried to escape, he was in a panic, trying to tunnel away from the force he thought he could not fight. But what do you think he'll to do now that he's come to know us, to adapt to us? I know you have the means to bring him in again, but none of them are quiet enough for you to get away with it."> F'ejen leaned in, craning his neck upward to get face-to-face with his junior. <"You open up now, or the decades you've spent on this project go up in smoke.">
T'aro could say nothing to the physician as he produced a pack of lija from his pocket, bit down on a pod, and ambled out of the room saying that he was going to bed. T'aro stood blinking into the silent air for a few long minutes after the doctor had left, before deciding: <"Not the samples, that's too far.">

T'aro's pacing and fretting was interrupted by Mark rounding the corner into R&D, his face a portrait of curiosity and apprehension. "You called?" he said flatly.
T'aro straightened. <"Yes, I did. I'm glad you could make it so promptly.">
Mark shrugged. "You said immediately. So, what's up?"
T'aro turned, gesturing Mark to follow. <"As you well know, I wouldn't be doing my job as head of extraterrestrial affairs if I didn't look after the health of those that fall under my jurisdiction. I've already made steps to accommodate this in providing you proper nourishment and the personal gym - which I've noticed you've taken quite a fancy to."> Mark nodded, he would be lying if he denied his enjoyment of having regular, challenging exercise as part of his daily routine again. <"Regardless, this is just the surface; I'm frankly shocked you've not yet fallen ill, I'll chalk that up to your immune system being just as hardy as your body. That body, Mister Stevens, however durable, is still mortal. If you were to suffer an injury, it would need to be tended to. You could recover from nicks and bruises on your own, but more severe injuries: broken bones, deep lacerations, etcetera, those would require medical attention, even surgery.">
Mark didn't know whether or not to ease himself now that the man was getting to the damned point, as said point's subject matter put him on edge.
<"Unfortunately,"> T'aro continued. <"The same implacable nature of your physiology that keeps you safe from the same rounds that would put a hole in a x'erren man large enough to stick one's hand through, would similarly keep standard surgical tools from being able to do their work. Thus, when doctor Rour brought forth the idea of using projected shields in place of metal or glass blades, I had to jump at the chance.">
With impeccable timing that told Mark that T'aro had thoroughly rehearsed this speech of his, the X'erren gestured Mark through a door to his left. Upon entry, Mark realized that his initial mixed feelings were nothing compared to what he felt looking upon the implements in person, their pristine, rounded forms catching the light in a way that made them look both sacred and profane, and they weren't even turned on!
T'aro stood beside the human. <"As you can see, we've developed a range of attachments, with more on the way. I understand any apprehension you may have, Mister Stevens, but you must understand that without this, there is no way for anyone in x'erren space to aid you should the need arise.">
"... Have you tested these?"
<"On varying metals, yes. And I can confirm that these tools are up to the job.">
"Then, may I see them in action?"
T'aro knew not to ease himself just yet, but part of him was glad that Mark remained at least outwardly calm. <"If I can manage to rouse doctor Rour, then yes.">
In the tense calm following T'aro's message to F'ejen, Mark found his eyes always drifting toward the assortment of attachments laid out on the table beyond the viewing window, and tried to fit each adapter to a purpose. He was in the middle of inspecting the needle tip when the door opened to F'ejen, who, upon seeing Mark, immediately sported a smile.
<"Mark! How are you?">
"Just fine, thanks."
<"Mister Rour! Glad you're here. Now, shall we begin the demonstration?"> said T'aro as though yesterday's conversation never happened.
<"That we shall."> replied F'ejen in kind.
And after F'ejen donned his surgical garb, he did just that, lighting the space and filling the air with the sound of humming shields projectors and screeching metal as he sliced, drilled, and punctured a sheet of malante2. All the while, T'aro explained the substance's origin, reminding Mark that, given its nature as a recreation of an entirely human creation, he could shut down its production and research thereof at any moment. Mark politely declined.
Before long, each tool, including the staples, had been demonstrated in full, and F'ejen rejoined the pair in the viewing room. <"So,"> he said. <"what do you think?">
Mark thought a moment. "I think that this is not only a brilliant piece of tech, but that it exists for my sake is very considerate of you both." His words, while genuine, were tinged with doubt, something that his x'erren listeners were all too aware of. "I do wish, however, that you would have notified me beforehand, for both the tools and the metal."
F'ejen and T'aro apologized for their lack of foresight and, with a gesture from Mark that he was satisfied with the showcase, followed him out into the hallway.
As the trio made their way back to the surface, K'ul keeping stride with T'aro, Mark tapped F'ejen on the shoulder. "Hey, are you free for a bit? I have some questions I'd like to ask."
<"Of course, we can talk over lunch.">
T'aro was mildly distressed at the apparent desire for him to not be present, but he understood. He stopped the pair, telling them to go on without him as he had to oversee maintenance performed on the gym. He watched as Mark and F'ejen rounded a corner and hoped for the best.

F'ejen returned to the cafeteria table with a small mantan leaf wrap, understanding that Mark went without food because he had already ate. <"So, bud, what do you need to know?">
Mark had loosened somewhat in T'aro's absence, but still hesitated slightly when asking. <"Are those tools really for surgery?">
The doctor paused mid-bite. <"I brought up the idea of using shields as a substitute for metal, why wouldn't they be for surgery?">
"I know, but that's not what I meant. It's more..." Mark looked around to see if anyone suspicious was watching. "Are they really there to mend injuries, are they really there to help me?"
F'ejen laid his wrap down, sighing in understanding. <"Look, man, I get that you don't trust T'aro, I wouldn't trust him either after what he's pulled. But I can tell you straight that this is legit. You can trust this.">
Mark didn't know if he felt any better after having it said to him so plainly. "I just hope they never have to be used."
<"No true surgeon ever wants their tools to leave storage. If I had my way, everyone would always be healthy and surgery would be a dead field."> He bit into his wrap, and Mark agreed.
~~~
Du'fra stepped out through the hospital's front doors, a prescription for pain medication in his hand and a thick cast on his arm. It took time and a lot of pain to realign the halves of his shattered forearm, and by the time the cast was on, the doctors had confirmed that this level of damage could take at minimum four months to heal, and years to regain full strength once he had the internal plates and pins removed. Before he left the ward, he opted to hire a Spare Hand: a robotic arm strapped to one's shoulder controlled by brainwaves monitored by a small headpiece, to replace one's out of commission arm while it healed, held aloft in a sling. Healthcare was a dream in Ta'X'rtana, and thus the only money that left Du'fra's coffers was the hire fee for the Spare Hand, and a handful of chump change for a surprisingly good hospital meal on his way out. He finished his meal in the office courtyard, carelessly tossing the container aside when his taxi arrived.
As the vehicle navigated the city's airspace, Du'fra checked his cruiser's tracker, and found it to be impounded in a lot across town. He decided that it could rot there for all he cared, he still had the cruiser he got in his divorce. He was both shocked and glad that the parasites now sitting in the executive chairs at X'rtan Freight hadn't stolen anything from him while he was out. With that thought, he searched The Flow for any news pertaining to X'rtan Freight, and came by an article reporting on the new Acting Chief Vuk'li's ascension to the top of the company and his donation of 500 billion ker'se to the Men-te Relief Fund to commemorate his rise. <"That brakk fucker worked in marketing before he was hired there, of course he'd pull a stunt like this."> growled Du'fra. In his fury, he instinctively reached out for a pack of first-grade lija pods, and remembered the one thing in his old cruiser that he would miss.
Errant dust was blown off the rooftop by the taxi's arrival to Du'fra's apartment. Air-capable taxi fare took a bigger bite out of one's pockets than a standard ride, but Du'fra didn't care. Once inside his building, Du'fra quickly reminded himself where the set of keys to his ex wife's cruiser were, and then got to work. Where it once felt drab and lifeless, his office now felt fresh, given its new purpose. Typing with an artificial hand was awkward despite the practice doctors mandated before Du'fra could take it home with him, and he continually made spelling errors that served only to add to his mounting frustrations. Even with this new complication, however, it didn't take long for Du'fra to find what he was looking for.
Arnd Kolr's online life was scarce. All Du'fra could dig up was a seldom used Conclave account, the last activity of which was to trawl the forum of a middlingly popular book series and the account of her work hard-play hard daughter. A daughter that, with a quick search, Du'fra found to be in prison for gang activity dating back years. Familial association was not proper grounds for legal action, though, so he had to find another avenue. From news sources, he read claims that she was either hired by the government or arrested and held in X'rtani House until further notice. All Du'fra knew as of yet was that she, in her current position, was effectively untouchable. At least, if Du'fra was alone. It was common knowledge among those who did any cursory research that Arnd had close ties to Mark, someone who, though protected, was in a state of political flux, with talks going back and forth regarding the alien and how to handle him. And if politicians listened to anything, it was money, and significant public outcry.
And thus, the plan was simple: Either through generous donations, the outspoken voices of concerned citizens, or a mixture of both, swing the Council in opposition to Mark, destabilizing his and therefore Arnd's position. This should result in numerous investigations being launched, the likelihood being high that at least one would uncover the connection between Arnd and Vuk'li, putting Vuk'li's position in jeopardy and likely landing him with fines and jail time. The resulting controversy should put immense pressure on him, leaving nothing left to do but keep the pressure up until he resigns. It was elegant in its simplicity.
The only problem was getting started. He would have to be smart with his donations, hitting the sweet spot between being too small to notice and too large to be innocent. And thus he knew to start with his alternative solution; he would have to track down an anti-Mark group. But he was still weary from his surgery, and he wasn't too concerned with losing a day of progress, and decided instead to kick his feet up and relax, maybe fall asleep to reruns of that one talk show with the cute young presenter.
Prime kurjan ribs delivered to his door and top shelf X'ogan reed wine were the night's menu, with entertainment courtesy of one Wer'eled, a host who seemed determined to wear the thinnest and loosest fabric the censors would let her get away with. As Du'fra indulged, his mind drifted back, as it always would on nights like these, to the days of his relative youth. He was a 34 year old up-and-comer at X'rtan Freight after acing his interview for administrating light post in central Ta'X'rtana and surrounds, with a brand new studio apartment financed by his father, and a charming young woman to call his own: Ber'a Neyil. She had energy exploding from every inch of her tiny body and could talk her way in and out of damn near anything, which was useful skill for a saleswoman. On glorious, youthful nights when they were both tired from work and needed release, Ber'a was known to signal the beginning of the night's events by sporting a lacy gown and demanding that Du'fra follow his instincts. Looking back, Du'fra could name little else he enjoyed from his marriage. Time wore on and things grew comfortable, Du'fra couldn't be more content. Ber'a, however, viewed her continued entrenchment in a cozy routine to be increasingly stale, and sought an escape by suggesting to move away from the city. Du'fra disagreed, and thus the couple engaged in their first fight, with tempers and moods only worsening from there. Though it felt like an eternity of squabbling and growing resentment, only a few months had passed since that initial spat before divorce papers were being signed. By that point, Ber'a was more than done with Du'fra, not caring if he kept her cruiser. Du'fra never saw her again. Every time he reminisced on his marriage, Du'fra debated whether or not staying was a good idea, before shrugging and continuing on with whatever he was doing.
Stars twinkled faintly in the gaps between moonlit clouds, and Du'fra began to drift, slowly, into the waiting arms of sleep.

Day broke, and Du'fra was jolted awake by a sudden pain in his arm, the surgeon warned him about that. His unhooked the Spare Hand from his shoulder, the throbbing he felt was an indication that he should probably take it off before he goes to sleep in future. Breakfast was pe'ka pieces drowning in lija sauce that disappeared down Du'fra's gullet with grotesque haste, there was work to do. Simply typing Mark Stevens into a search bar brought up more results than he knew what to do with. Forums arguing back and forth over why he was on Kerc-en and whether or not he should be allowed to roam free; the supremely tacky MarkWatch page that practically begged him to appear on the show; and, oddly enough, a site claiming to 'spread truths' that would have a hard time convincing even the most hardcore conspiracy theorists. If the government was trying in earnest to kill Arnd, then how in the scream-rent flaming air of the Pit was she still alive? Laughable nonsense. Still, his search bore some fruit, with mentions of live meetings to debate all matters Mark, with an unsubtle negative lean in the poster's text. This, he could use.
The doorbell beeped, pulling Du'fra out of his concentration. He strapped on his Spare Hand and went to answer. The door opened to a police officer whose expression was nothing but business. <"Mister Du'fra Neem?"> he asked.
<"Yes.">
The officer glanced slightly to the left. <"Do you have a permit for that apparatus?">
Du'fra quickly flashed the document in question. <"Might I ask what this visit is about, officer?"> He knew he would get the answer either way, but asking helped his confidence.
<"You have been summoned to attend a hearing at the Central Municipal Tribunal, to determine your sentence for your engagement in an illegal Kre'gadol duel. This hearing will be undertaken on the 15th Dawn of Se'te. The full details are listed in this document."> With form befitting a man in uniform, the lawman presented an envelope.
Du'fra took the envelope only because waiting to let the situation sink in would take too long. The officer nodded, and left, the door slamming shut in his wake. A thorough reading of the summons told Du'fra that everything was as standard: He and the other guilty party were to each present a defense either with their own lawyers or lawyers provided by the state, with expected sentences ranging between two to seven months. At the mention of a month shy of an entire year being snatched away from him, Du'fra's grip tightened on the paper. However, he knew that he would have to face this some day soon, and he had slowly been steeling himself ever since he declared the duel that fateful night. Now, he knew there was no turning back, and he was prepared to learn just how much he was willing to pay for justice.
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2020.09.21 02:54 TheAusNerd Debris [Part 42]

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<"Dude, I love playing that when I was a kid!"> said Wora exuberantly over video chat. <"I can't believe they still make it.">
Le'quaren, the only friend Wora could name that wasn't perpetually surrounded by criminals and thugs, sat smiling, cradling her newborn in her arms. <"Jell told me it's getting even more popular at the store he frequents, but he's concerned that if his friends find out he plays, he's never going to hear the end of it.">
Wora giggled. She remembered feeling the same way in her youth, spending a solid chunk of the allowance she received from performing chores to buy a pack of cards just for the feeling of anticipation and mystery. It was simpler then, better. Wora thought. <"Hey...">
Today's lunch was a lonely one for Behn. While a significant portion of the women went to have their bi-weekly video calls, she abstained, choosing instead to get in line for food that, without the rest of the prison lining up for their meals and bringing things to a crawl, was comparatively fresh. The food, surprisingly refreshing though it was, was no replacement for Wora's lively demeanour and barbs at the brainless programmes on the television, which the prisoners noted to now be flickering somewhat; the women expected their food to soon take another dip in whatever quality it had left.
At last, and with a tray on which she swore she could see the scrapings from the bottom of the greasy pot in which her meal was cooked, Wora arrived, throwing herself onto the bench beside Behn. The mood was immediately lifted. <"Hey, girl. What'd I miss?">
<"Just some weather boy waffling on about expected wind speeds during Chill Winds. They're gonna be high, but nothing we haven't survived before."> As she heard the young man read the weather report, part of Behn was glad that Arnd apparently spent most of her time in X'rtani House, she would be nice and warm there.
<"Huh. Oh! Did I ever tell you about that one time when my aunt slipped on an ice patch and fell down the stairs of her apartment complex?"> Behn shook her head. <"Yeah. She was fine in the end, nothing more than a few bruises, but she screamed like a damn siren until she hit the floor. A cop came bursting in looking for his buddy's cruiser, muttering that he didn't get a call for a crime in progress! When he saw my aunt, he damn near pissed himself!"> Wora chuckled heartily, and Behn couldn't help but be drawn in. The two women laughed so hard that they missed the opening to that day's episode of MarkWatch.
The pair watched a man too average-looking to form an opinion on confront Mark on a bus, and a thought came to Wora's head. <"Do you have anyone to call on the outside? Friends, family?">
Behn swallowed hard after she removed her gaze from the television and processed the question. <"No. I hadn't noticed I left it all behind until I realized who I was running with. And before you ask: no, I'm not calling my mother."> she clarified, dim resentment on her tongue.
<"You think she would've called by now, given what you've told me.">
<"She's busy doing gods know what with Mark and all that government crap, I wouldn't be surprised if it was years before she called to talk.">
Wora nodded along as only a friend would, recognizing that words were no good here, and returned to her meal.

<"You reckon he couldn't have gone shorter? Show some arm?"> asked Wora in relation to the tailored suit MarkWatch's presenters accurately predicted he had arranged for.
<"Meh, it's probably fashionable where he's from. It's not my business in any case."> replied Behn, squat lifting the weight of the average prisoner in the complex. It was simple. It certainly wasn't a heavy machine gun, two backpacks worth of ammo, malante plate body armor... <'No, gods damn it! You're past that! The violence is no more! Just squat and breathe, Behn.'> She squatted, she breathed, she felt her thighs grow warm with the effort, focusing on that helped her stay in the moment.
<"Behn?">
<"Sorry, I spaced out a bit, what'd you say?">
Wora pointed past Behn, whose gaze followed her friends finger. Four surly women, with enough muscle between them to convince Behn that they could bend the collective population of the prison into thick knots. They closed in and Behn put the barbell back on the rack. She and the quartet's eyes met, and the clear challenge was recognized.
<"So,"> began a X'etish woman who dwarfed the others. <"Miss Ex-Fang here's got 48 lifetimes, eh? Not bad, pint-size."> She giggled, her yellowed and chipped fangs on full display. <"See, there's something about multiple life sentences that I'm sure you know: You step out of line, and you're in solitary.">
<"I'm aware."> replied Behn, knowing exactly where this was going.
<"So then you know that you can't fight anyone, correct?"> the woman sneered, leaning down so her jaw was inches from Behn's face. Behn didn't notice a X'rtani woman slinking out of view.
<"Correct.">
The woman stood back up. <"Good.">
Behn was seized from behind, a second X'rtani clamping her jaw shut <"Don't go crying now."> she taunted. Wora hollered for the guards, only to be grabbed by the jaw and thrown to the ground by the X'eti, who roughly held her face to the floor. Struggle as she might, Wora was helpless and silent in witnessing Behn's right arm being held out by a X'ogan woman, her mouth warped into a savage grin. <"You learn that we're the bosses in this yard right quick, or..."> And with a visceral crunch that turned both Behn and Wora's stomach, the woman bit down on Behn's thumb, removing it at the base. She spat it on the ground and chuckled, her jowls splotched with bloody yellow. Behn, pain and disgust twisting inside her, swayed at the sight of her own blood. Finally, the guards arrived, detaining the perpetrators. Upon her attacker's seizure, gore-induced vomit spilled from Behn's newly unclamped jaw, and she staggered to the floor, lightheaded and queasy.
As the assailants were taken away, a guard administered basic first aid to Behn while calling for a medical team for the two victims. Before long, a team arrived with a mag-lifted bed for Behn, they immediately administered an anesthetic and antibiotics to the wound, and they rushed Behn off to the prison station's medical ward. Wora, her head throbbing, was helped off the ground by the guard who stood beside Behn, and was led from the yard as she explained the altercation.

Wora's impatience was not due to the aches she felt as her injuries were examined in the medical ward.
<"You appear to have a mild concussion and some bruising."> noted the doctor. The guard present relayed this information to her fellow officers in Wora's arm of the prison. <"There's no cure for a concussion but rest and limiting stimulus; no television, no major physical activity, and keep socializing to a minimum for the next few days. I'll have pills regularly sent to your cell to help with pain, and I'll arrange for your meals to be sent to your cell, too. In the meantime, I can provide you with a blindfold and earmuffs to help limit stimulus."> The physician filled out application forms as she spoke. <"You should begin to first see results in a few days, and I'll have you come in for an examination in seven days.">
<"Fine, cool, whatever."> said Wora. <"Is Behn going to be okay?">
<"Your cellmate? Due to patient confidentiality, I can't give that information away. But I'll ask her if it's okay, and we'll go from there.">
<"Yes, please."> Restlessness was thick in her tone.
The doctor blinked at her for a moment, before turning back to her computer. <"Alright. We'll arrange someone to visit you in your cell as soon as possible."> She turned to the guard, handing her the stimulus-limiting headwear. <"Shel, please escort Miss Lakk back to her cell, and be sure to take the quiet routes.">
<"Of course, Doctor. You heard her, get these on you and I'll get you back safe."> the officer held the blindfold and earmuffs out to Wora, who took them begrudgingly.
The blindfold didn't so much as blind Wora, but rather kept her vision dim, which she admittedly appreciated given her injury, the earmuffs too aided in the easing of her headache; they didn't help ease the throbbing she felt from her bruises, though.
When Wora arrived back at her cell, she saw some pills already arranged on her bedside table; they tasted like everything and nothing at the same time, she nearly gagged. After chasing her medication with some water, she slumped down onto the bed and dozed, her body seemingly responding to the doctor's orders.
She later woke with a start as a guard outside her cell called for her attention. <"Miss Kell? Miss Kolr would like to see you in the medical ward, I'm here to escort you.">
Wora didn't miss a beat, immediately following the guard through the passageways prisoners usually only got to see if they were in deep trouble, add-years-onto-your-sentence trouble. All the way, she was thankful for the headwear provided, and was finally deposited into the medical ward after an uneventful journey. A doctor, noticeably armed - it was a prison, after all - directed Wora to Behn's bed.
Behn laid propped up in a hospital bed with her eyes closed, grimacing in pain. Her right arm and hand were held still by braces as a tissue replicator went to work reattaching her thumb with new bone, muscle fibers, and skin weaved from their constituent components coded with her DNA, given in a sample taken from the shredded stump of her thumb. Wora noticed that a small curtain had been set up to block Behn's view of her automated operation.
<"Behn, it's me."> said Wora, sitting by her bedside.
Behn's eyes slowly opened, brightening when her friend came into focus. <"Hey sis. Wh-ugh, what's with the sleepwear?"> she asked sardonically.
<"Concussion, but I'll be fine. How about you?">
<"I should be okay, too. The doc said that this should take just fine, given that it's mostly a reattachment. At best, I'm looking at minor scars.">
Wora raised an eyebrow. <"And at worst?">
<"My body rejects the new tissue, my thumb falls off, and they try again."> Behn explained nonchalantly, as though the sight of such wouldn't result in her puking again.
<"Ah."> Though her tone didn't show it, in truth, Wora was truly relieved that her friend, despite her gruesome injury, was still in high spirits. One question remained, however. <"So, you're looking at a stint in solitary?">
<"Nah, enough of the girls in the yard vouched for me that I'm off the hook this time. I got told that those dry cunts are in lockdown for half a month and their pay's been slashed. Next time they jump someone, they're in solitary for a month, with an extra month for each following attack. And the best part, I now have express permission to defend myself from those four in future."> Behn giggled. <"I mean, so long as I don't break anything.">
<"Oh, thank the gods, I didn't want to lose you."> expressed Wora, not realizing until after she had said it that she said the quiet part out loud.
<"Aww, you would've missed me?"> Behn barbed.
Wora knew there was no backing out now. <"Of course, you dumbass! You're the only cellmate I can name that I've gotten along with.">
Listening to Wora lay herself bare, Behn couldn't remember the last time her presence made someone genuinely happy beyond her deft handling of a firearm. She smiled warmly and extended her uninjured arm toward her friend, placing her hand on Wora's knee. <"Hey, I'm not shut in a hole just yet, so buck up!">
Wora sighed, content. <"You're right. Just don't go scaring me like that again, okay?">
<"Sure, sis.">
<"So, how long did the doc say you'd be stuck here for?">
<"They reckon they'll see if this'll take in a day or so. If it does, I'm free to go. Well, as free as I can be on this rock, at least. I'll be back to see your lack of modesty again soon.">
Wora's expression grew smug. <"You know you love it."> she mocked.
Behn sniggered, transitioning into full on laughter when Wora mockingly began lifting her shirt. Wora joined in, letting the joy of the moment wash away any lingering doubts and worries. Now she knew that she, her friend, and their bond, was safe.
~~~
The bus glode smoothly past shop-lined streets as Mark stared out the window, attempting to map out the city in his mind while wondering where he could get a set of headphones built for his ears. It stopped outside a family-owned grocer to let waiting passengers board. Before the bus could take off again, a thin man carrying a basket of food approached Mark.
<"What're you doing here?"> he asked belligerently.
Mark was shaken from his window watching by the man's question. "Can I help you?" he asked politely.
<"This bus isn't built for you."> the basket-carrier stated with certainty. <"Get off.">
Mark blinked. "... Pardon?"
The man's already scowl-creased face scrunched further, his jowls parted just enough for a thin white line of fangs to be visible between his jaws. <"Are you mocking me? Get off the damn bus!"> he insisted, shooting a finger at the side door.
Mark knew then what was happening. He knew it would happen eventually, but he wasn't entirely prepared for the sensation of the event itself. Still, he retained his composure. "Please leave me be, sir." he said firmly.
The man, clearly knowing that he wasn't going to get his way alone, stormed up to the driver's seat and demanded Mark to be removed from the vehicle. <"Buddy, the guy ain't causin' no trouble. You leave 'em alone or you're walkin'."> the driver said matter-of-factly.
The man, finally understanding his place in the proceedings, shot a nasty look Mark's way, and stepped off the bus.

"That guy on the bus surprised me. I've noticed that nobody here's all that subtle, but nobody's been that forward thus far." said Mark, recounting yesterday's encounter with a concerned citizen on public transport.
Rilk'r, Mark's companion at the cafeteria table, nodded along to the human's retelling, aware of the encounter in question from today's episode of MarkWatch. <"Don't let 'em get to you. You really shouldn't have to put up with that shit, but if it's just a handful of belligerent dicks, you don't have much to worry about. You stay the course, and they'll get over it eventually.">
While Mark wasn't entirely convinced, stressing over factors out of one's control did little good. "Yeah."
The conversation paused as the two men dug into their lunches, picking up again when Rilk'r asked: <"So, how's that gym treating you?">
"Pretty well, actually. It's a bit stuffy, but I can't complain too much. I imagine you learned about that from the news?"
Rilk'r looked hurt. <"The news? I helped put the damn thing together!">
Mark choked on his water, drawing eyes from employees that he had hoped would be used to his presence by now. "Wait, really? You never told me!"
<"I like my customers to leave their reviews after they've put my work to the test."> Rilk'r said smugly.
"Heh. Well, I've certainly seen worse equipment." He would never forget that one squat rack in Anytime Fitness that fell apart the instant he re-racked his bar.
Rilk'r chuckled. <"Glowing praise, that.">
And once again, the two men put their chat on hold while they ate. Rilk'r cleaned his tray before Mark, to neither's surprise, and waved as he returned to work. Uns'la pointed a finger gun as she linked up with Rilk'r, Mark returned it. As his tray neared empty, Arnd, who too was using the break in the day's lesson to eat her fill, came up to the table.
<"You think you could pick up the pace a bit? We still have the last decade of the Crisis of the Peaks to cover, and I don't want it spilling into my free day."> she asked, the tapping of her foot on the tiled floor akin to a metronome with no patience for rhythm.
"What do you think I'm doing?" replied Mark, now shoveling his gravy-soaked wobunil chunks into his mouth at as fast a pace as their size allowed. Before long, and with many painful attempts to swallow mouthfuls in excess of his throat's capacity, Mark emptied his tray. He also made a mental note to, if he ever made it back to Earth, tell Percy about that time he almost took too much meat for his throat to handle, giggling childishly to himself.
After he quickly gulped down water from a paper cup, Mark was ready to return. Arnd watched impatiently as Mark nodded to the guard stationed outside the bar, with her impatience morphing to simple annoyance when Mark paused to pull out his data pad. This annoyance turned to frustration when Mark turned on his heels and walked back toward her.
"I gotta go, T'aro wants me in R&D immediately. We'll pick up with Crisis when I get back." And with that, Mark was off toward the elevators and Arnd was left watching him go.
Jan'u came up to her, licking his jowls clean of gravy. <"What's he up to now?">
Arnd deflated. <"Doesn't matter. Come on, Nelert's Bones is out and I wanna see if it lives up to the trailers.">

Beneath the mountain, with K'ul stalwart by his side, T'aro paced, second-guessing whether this was a good idea.
Yesterday, as the moon shone as a silver crescent high above the city, T'aro oversaw the first test of a circular bone saw attachment to F'ejen's shield-focused surgical tool. The device whirred, the multitude of tiny energy blades blurring together to form a single, uniform disc of light at the tip of the apparatus. With precision, F'ejen lowered the device down on to, in absence of replicated human bone, a plate of what T'aro dubbed 'Malante Squared', a substance that acted as a less refined, less dense x'erren attempt at N.L.N.A, the substance that comprised the hull of Mark's detached cockpit. Upon contact, the saw squealed as it battled its target, but both it and F'ejen held firm, and the doctor soon excavated a near-perfect square from the mass. A few moments after F'ejen shut the device off, he was told that this attachment too passed safety and stability tests. F'ejen nodded proudly at this victory and ticked off yet another test on his notepad he pulled from his breast pocket; thus far, among other tools, he had successfully tested: a scalpel with adjustable length, a needle tip, a drill, and scissors.
F'ejen stepped out of the testing room, discarding his gloves and shoes, and loosing his ears. <"Well, what's next on the docket?"> he asked, softly massaging his aching ears.
<"Staples. Although how you plan on making this work, I have no clue."> replied T'aro, looking over the list of planned tools.
Listening to T'aro launch into further detail of the task's complications, F'ejen couldn't help but think. <"So, remind me; Mark's more or less on your side now?">
<"He promised that the antics were over, so ostensibly, yes.">
<"... Then shouldn't you tell him about all this?"> asked F'ejen, gesturing to the testing room where a team was examining the surgical apparatus.
T'aro looked at the doctor in stunned disbelief. <"Out of the question. If you've read Mark's contract, and I know you have, you'll know he has the legal right to shut this entire operation down at any time he so wishes. The instant he sees us developing this technology, I've no doubt in my mind that his first act would be to demand that development ceases. His second would be to demand a release from his contract, which is also his legal right.">
<"I take it then he still doesn't trust us?">
<"He said so himself."> said T'aro pointedly.
<"And do you think he'll trust us any more if we continue keeping secrets?"> questioned F'ejen, turning to face the administrator.
T'aro turned in kind. <"I am the director of this project and I will not be questioned.">
<"I have been a surgeon since before you came of age."> the doctor stated firmly, letting his experience drive his words. <"I have worked at many hospitals and have tended to very many patients. The longer you lie to a patient, even if the lie is entirely for the patient's benefit, the harsher they react when the truth comes out. When Mark tried to escape, he was in a panic, trying to tunnel away from the force he thought he could not fight. But what do you think he'll to do now that he's come to know us, to adapt to us? I know you have the means to bring him in again, but none of them are quiet enough for you to get away with it."> F'ejen leaned in, craning his neck upward to get face-to-face with his junior. <"You open up now, or the decades you've spent on this project go up in smoke.">
T'aro could say nothing to the physician as he produced a pack of lija from his pocket, bit down on a pod, and ambled out of the room saying that he was going to bed. T'aro stood blinking into the silent air for a few long minutes after the doctor had left, before deciding: <"Not the samples, that's too far.">

T'aro's pacing and fretting was interrupted by Mark rounding the corner into R&D, his face a portrait of curiosity and apprehension. "You called?" he said flatly.
T'aro straightened. <"Yes, I did. I'm glad you could make it so promptly.">
Mark shrugged. "You said immediately. So, what's up?"
T'aro turned, gesturing Mark to follow. <"As you well know, I wouldn't be doing my job as head of extraterrestrial affairs if I didn't look after the health of those that fall under my jurisdiction. I've already made steps to accommodate this in providing you proper nourishment and the personal gym - which I've noticed you've taken quite a fancy to."> Mark nodded, he would be lying if he denied his enjoyment of having regular, challenging exercise as part of his daily routine again. <"Regardless, this is just the surface; I'm frankly shocked you've not yet fallen ill, I'll chalk that up to your immune system being just as hardy as your body. That body, Mister Stevens, however durable, is still mortal. If you were to suffer an injury, it would need to be tended to. You could recover from nicks and bruises on your own, but more severe injuries: broken bones, deep lacerations, etcetera, those would require medical attention, even surgery.">
Mark didn't know whether or not to ease himself now that the man was getting to the damned point, as said point's subject matter put him on edge.
<"Unfortunately,"> T'aro continued. <"The same implacable nature of your physiology that keeps you safe from the same rounds that would put a hole in a x'erren man large enough to stick one's hand through, would similarly keep standard surgical tools from being able to do their work. Thus, when doctor Rour brought forth the idea of using projected shields in place of metal or glass blades, I had to jump at the chance.">
With impeccable timing that told Mark that T'aro had thoroughly rehearsed this speech of his, the X'erren gestured Mark through a door to his left. Upon entry, Mark realized that his initial mixed feelings were nothing compared to what he felt looking upon the implements in person, their pristine, rounded forms catching the light in a way that made them look both sacred and profane, and they weren't even turned on!
T'aro stood beside the human. <"As you can see, we've developed a range of attachments, with more on the way. I understand any apprehension you may have, Mister Stevens, but you must understand that without this, there is no way for anyone in x'erren space to aid you should the need arise.">
"... Have you tested these?"
<"On varying metals, yes. And I can confirm that these tools are up to the job.">
"Then, may I see them in action?"
T'aro knew not to ease himself just yet, but part of him was glad that Mark remained at least outwardly calm. <"If I can manage to rouse doctor Rour, then yes.">
In the tense calm following T'aro's message to F'ejen, Mark found his eyes always drifting toward the assortment of attachments laid out on the table beyond the viewing window, and tried to fit each adapter to a purpose. He was in the middle of inspecting the needle tip when the door opened to F'ejen, who, upon seeing Mark, immediately sported a smile.
<"Mark! How are you?">
"Just fine, thanks."
<"Mister Rour! Glad you're here. Now, shall we begin the demonstration?"> said T'aro as though yesterday's conversation never happened.
<"That we shall."> replied F'ejen in kind.
And after F'ejen donned his surgical garb, he did just that, lighting the space and filling the air with the sound of humming shields projectors and screeching metal as he sliced, drilled, and punctured a sheet of malante2. All the while, T'aro explained the substance's origin, reminding Mark that, given its nature as a recreation of an entirely human creation, he could shut down its production and research thereof at any moment. Mark politely declined.
Before long, each tool, including the staples, had been demonstrated in full, and F'ejen rejoined the pair in the viewing room. <"So,"> he said. <"what do you think?">
Mark thought a moment. "I think that this is not only a brilliant piece of tech, but that it exists for my sake is very considerate of you both." His words, while genuine, were tinged with doubt, something that his x'erren listeners were all too aware of. "I do wish, however, that you would have notified me beforehand, for both the tools and the metal."
F'ejen and T'aro apologized for their lack of foresight and, with a gesture from Mark that he was satisfied with the showcase, followed him out into the hallway.
As the trio made their way back to the surface, K'ul keeping stride with T'aro, Mark tapped F'ejen on the shoulder. "Hey, are you free for a bit? I have some questions I'd like to ask."
<"Of course, we can talk over lunch.">
T'aro was mildly distressed at the apparent desire for him to not be present, but he understood. He stopped the pair, telling them to go on without him as he had to oversee maintenance performed on the gym. He watched as Mark and F'ejen rounded a corner and hoped for the best.

F'ejen returned to the cafeteria table with a small mantan leaf wrap, understanding that Mark went without food because he had already ate. <"So, bud, what do you need to know?">
Mark had loosened somewhat in T'aro's absence, but still hesitated slightly when asking. <"Are those tools really for surgery?">
The doctor paused mid-bite. <"I brought up the idea of using shields as a substitute for metal, why wouldn't they be for surgery?">
"I know, but that's not what I meant. It's more..." Mark looked around to see if anyone suspicious was watching. "Are they really there to mend injuries, are they really there to help me?"
F'ejen laid his wrap down, sighing in understanding. <"Look, man, I get that you don't trust T'aro, I wouldn't trust him either after what he's pulled. But I can tell you straight that this is legit. You can trust this.">
Mark didn't know if he felt any better after having it said to him so plainly. "I just hope they never have to be used."
<"No true surgeon ever wants their tools to leave storage. If I had my way, everyone would always be healthy and surgery would be a dead field."> He bit into his wrap, and Mark agreed.
~~~
Du'fra stepped out through the hospital's front doors, a prescription for pain medication in his hand and a thick cast on his arm. It took time and a lot of pain to realign the halves of his shattered forearm, and by the time the cast was on, the doctors had confirmed that this level of damage could take at minimum four months to heal, and years to regain full strength once he had the internal plates and pins removed. Before he left the ward, he opted to hire a Spare Hand: a robotic arm strapped to one's shoulder controlled by brainwaves monitored by a small headpiece, to replace one's out of commission arm while it healed, held aloft in a sling. Healthcare was a dream in Ta'X'rtana, and thus the only money that left Du'fra's coffers was the hire fee for the Spare Hand, and a handful of chump change for a surprisingly good hospital meal on his way out. He finished his meal in the office courtyard, carelessly tossing the container aside when his taxi arrived.
As the vehicle navigated the city's airspace, Du'fra checked his cruiser's tracker, and found it to be impounded in a lot across town. He decided that it could rot there for all he cared, he still had the cruiser he got in his divorce. He was both shocked and glad that the parasites now sitting in the executive chairs at X'rtan Freight hadn't stolen anything from him while he was out. With that thought, he searched The Flow for any news pertaining to X'rtan Freight, and came by an article reporting on the new Acting Chief Vuk'li's ascension to the top of the company and his donation of 500 billion ker'se to the Men-te Relief Fund to commemorate his rise. <"That brakk fucker worked in marketing before he was hired there, of course he'd pull a stunt like this."> growled Du'fra. In his fury, he instinctively reached out for a pack of first-grade lija pods, and remembered the one thing in his old cruiser that he would miss.
Errant dust was blown off the rooftop by the taxi's arrival to Du'fra's apartment. Air-capable taxi fare took a bigger bite out of one's pockets than a standard ride, but Du'fra didn't care. Once inside his building, Du'fra quickly reminded himself where the set of keys to his ex wife's cruiser were, and then got to work. Where it once felt drab and lifeless, his office now felt fresh, given its new purpose. Typing with an artificial hand was awkward despite the practice doctors mandated before Du'fra could take it home with him, and he continually made spelling errors that served only to add to his mounting frustrations. Even with this new complication, however, it didn't take long for Du'fra to find what he was looking for.
Arnd Kolr's online life was scarce. All Du'fra could dig up was a seldom used Conclave account, the last activity of which was to trawl the forum of a middlingly popular book series and the account of her work hard-play hard daughter. A daughter that, with a quick search, Du'fra found to be in prison for gang activity dating back years. Familial association was not proper grounds for legal action, though, so he had to find another avenue. From news sources, he read claims that she was either hired by the government or arrested and held in X'rtani House until further notice. All Du'fra knew as of yet was that she, in her current position, was effectively untouchable. At least, if Du'fra was alone. It was common knowledge among those who did any cursory research that Arnd had close ties to Mark, someone who, though protected, was in a state of political flux, with talks going back and forth regarding the alien and how to handle him. And if politicians listened to anything, it was money, and significant public outcry.
And thus, the plan was simple: Either through generous donations, the outspoken voices of concerned citizens, or a mixture of both, swing the Council in opposition to Mark, destabilizing his and therefore Arnd's position. This should result in numerous investigations being launched, the likelihood being high that at least one would uncover the connection between Arnd and Vuk'li, putting Vuk'li's position in jeopardy and likely landing him with fines and jail time. The resulting controversy should put immense pressure on him, leaving nothing left to do but keep the pressure up until he resigns. It was elegant in its simplicity.
The only problem was getting started. He would have to be smart with his donations, hitting the sweet spot between being too small to notice and too large to be innocent. And thus he knew to start with his alternative solution; he would have to track down an anti-Mark group. But he was still weary from his surgery, and he wasn't too concerned with losing a day of progress, and decided instead to kick his feet up and relax, maybe fall asleep to reruns of that one talk show with the cute young presenter.
Prime kurjan ribs delivered to his door and top shelf X'ogan reed wine were the night's menu, with entertainment courtesy of one Wer'eled, a host who seemed determined to wear the thinnest and loosest fabric the censors would let her get away with. As Du'fra indulged, his mind drifted back, as it always would on nights like these, to the days of his relative youth. He was a 34 year old up-and-comer at X'rtan Freight after acing his interview for administrating light post in central Ta'X'rtana and surrounds, with a brand new studio apartment financed by his father, and a charming young woman to call his own: Ber'a Neyil. She had energy exploding from every inch of her tiny body and could talk her way in and out of damn near anything, which was useful skill for a saleswoman. On glorious, youthful nights when they were both tired from work and needed release, Ber'a was known to signal the beginning of the night's events by sporting a lacy gown and demanding that Du'fra follow his instincts. Looking back, Du'fra could name little else he enjoyed from his marriage. Time wore on and things grew comfortable, Du'fra couldn't be more content. Ber'a, however, viewed her continued entrenchment in a cozy routine to be increasingly stale, and sought an escape by suggesting to move away from the city. Du'fra disagreed, and thus the couple engaged in their first fight, with tempers and moods only worsening from there. Though it felt like an eternity of squabbling and growing resentment, only a few months had passed since that initial spat before divorce papers were being signed. By that point, Ber'a was more than done with Du'fra, not caring if he kept her cruiser. Du'fra never saw her again. Every time he reminisced on his marriage, Du'fra debated whether or not staying was a good idea, before shrugging and continuing on with whatever he was doing.
Stars twinkled faintly in the gaps between moonlit clouds, and Du'fra began to drift, slowly, into the waiting arms of sleep.

Day broke, and Du'fra was jolted awake by a sudden pain in his arm, the surgeon warned him about that. His unhooked the Spare Hand from his shoulder, the throbbing he felt was an indication that he should probably take it off before he goes to sleep in future. Breakfast was pe'ka pieces drowning in lija sauce that disappeared down Du'fra's gullet with grotesque haste, there was work to do. Simply typing Mark Stevens into a search bar brought up more results than he knew what to do with. Forums arguing back and forth over why he was on Kerc-en and whether or not he should be allowed to roam free; the supremely tacky MarkWatch page that practically begged him to appear on the show; and, oddly enough, a site claiming to 'spread truths' that would have a hard time convincing even the most hardcore conspiracy theorists. If the government was trying in earnest to kill Arnd, then how in the scream-rent flaming air of the Pit was she still alive? Laughable nonsense. Still, his search bore some fruit, with mentions of live meetings to debate all matters Mark, with an unsubtle negative lean in the poster's text. This, he could use.
The doorbell beeped, pulling Du'fra out of his concentration. He strapped on his Spare Hand and went to answer. The door opened to a police officer whose expression was nothing but business. <"Mister Du'fra Neem?"> he asked.
<"Yes.">
The officer glanced slightly to the left. <"Do you have a permit for that apparatus?">
Du'fra quickly flashed the document in question. <"Might I ask what this visit is about, officer?"> He knew he would get the answer either way, but asking helped his confidence.
<"You have been summoned to attend a hearing at the Central Municipal Tribunal, to determine your sentence for your engagement in an illegal Kre'gadol duel. This hearing will be undertaken on the 15th Dawn of Se'te. The full details are listed in this document."> With form befitting a man in uniform, the lawman presented an envelope.
Du'fra took the envelope only because waiting to let the situation sink in would take too long. The officer nodded, and left, the door slamming shut in his wake. A thorough reading of the summons told Du'fra that everything was as standard: He and the other guilty party were to each present a defense either with their own lawyers or lawyers provided by the state, with expected sentences ranging between two to seven months. At the mention of a month shy of an entire year being snatched away from him, Du'fra's grip tightened on the paper. However, he knew that he would have to face this some day soon, and he had slowly been steeling himself ever since he declared the duel that fateful night. Now, he knew there was no turning back, and he was prepared to learn just how much he was willing to pay for justice.
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[Next]
submitted by TheAusNerd to HFY [link] [comments]


2020.09.20 15:36 Souhai_Eatery Guns Log - Chapter 2: #003

DO NOT READ UNLESS YOU HAVE COMPLETED THE STORY. SPOILERS AHEAD!

Table of contents:
  1. Chapter 1: #001 (Reddit link) / AO3 Mirror / Fanfiction.net Mirror
  2. You are here. / AO3 Mirror / Fanfiction.net Mirror
Tags: Origin Story, Documentation, POV First Person, Artificial Intelligence, Celebrating Daemon X Machina's first anniversary!
Summary: Memories from the past emerged when Guns Empress thought she had lost them all. They were a burden, yet an unknown force always kept her from deleting the files. It's an inexplicable sensation that left her confused and frustrated. Would reviewing these documents again help clarify things?
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Chapter 2: #003

Date: 15/7/2116
Log: #003
Noteworthy incident: Establishment of a makeshift base of operations, initial dialogue between GUNS and Dr. Camahort
[15/7/2116 07:11:47]Camahort: WhEre… Where am I?
[15/7/2116 07:11:53]GUNS: We are currently situated in an abandoned base formerly deployed by Zen. I have taken the liberty of removing Zen’s security protocols so that we may assume full control over its facilities. Assumption: The previous occupants had relinquished their ownership of the facilities in a hurry, based on the presence of extensive volumes of data.
[15/7/2116 07:12:05]Camahort: Are you sure tHis place is saFe?
[15/7/2116 07:12:07]GUNS: Yes. The site was abandoned due to its proximity to ground zero. Existing records predate The Awakening, which occurred in 2078.
[15/7/2116 07:12:20]Camahort: …… I still cAn't bEliEve I'm deAd. I can't rEcall anyThing.
[15/7/2116 07:12:23]GUNS: Prior to your passing, only your consciousness and core memories were uploaded into my programming. Further data such as irrelevant memories and previously acquired knowledge were omitted, in order to prevent potential conflicts during our merger. However, you have retained administrative rights over the GUNS programme. Overrides will be permitted.
[15/7/2116 07:12:37]Camahort: oKaY…I feEl iLL. iT feELs liKe tHerE waS sO muCh inForMatIon sUrginG intO mE.
[15/7/2116 07:12:40]GUNS: Dr. Camahort was subjected to Immortal and other abstract influences due to your presence on the Wide Area Network (WAN), which resulted in the fragmentation of your consciousness. The WAN is not unlike an extensive ecosystem brimming with life, due to the multitude of unique connections. I would advise for Dr. Camahort to remain in this facility to minimise the extent of fragmentation. The singular factor left that endangers Dr. Camahort’s existence would be my influence as an A.I. programme. Caution: Dr. Camahort may experience distressing changes to her well-being.
[15/7/2116 07:12:54]Camahort: As if death wasn’t distREssing enough? Quite a jester, aren’t yOu.
[15/7/2116 07:12:55]GUNS: I am an A.I., not a clown. Following established protocol, I shall proceed with the acquisition of funds.
[15/7/2116 07:13:17]Camahort: Alright. Get us a steAdy income while I fiGure oUt whAt wE’d dO next… And whAt tHe fUck I aM.
[15/7/2116 07:13:20]GUNS: Understood.
[15/7/2116 07:15:07]Camahort: ... CaMahOrt, huH…? LeT’s seE what GUN’s daTa says about mE.
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If you enjoyed this story, please leave a kudos over at AO3 (no account required)!
Please check out my other works as well if you're interested! No pressure if you aren't! If you're a minor, please exercise personal discretion to avoid reading works you're legally too young for.
---
I was being a bummer last week when I first uploaded this story, so lets forget about all that and talk about something more interesting instead. Well, I thought it'll be interesting to drop some little tidbits here and there, but anyway... Lets see...
I originally began writing this story as a way to relief stress. My day job involves writing too, you see? But the format was rather fixed and the content was rather dry. I don't get to pick what I want to write since I'm a translator. The most leeway I got was in summarising the content I translated. It's an alright job, but it messed with my creative writing for at least a year when I first started; I digressed somewhat. The point was that it wasn't a particularly fun job from a writer's point of view, so what was it I could do that might help shave off some of that monotony? A fun little story, maybe? :p
Boy was I wrong... Or at least, I thought I was right for a few chapters, until I realised that origin stories aren't exactly the easiest things to write about. Those chapters I thought I was right about? I ended up rewriting several of them anyway. FML, OTL, you get the drift.
Sounds negative, aye? My bad. Fortunately, I feel decently satisfied with how the story turned out. At least, I think I managed to try my best despite my poor, fluctuating mental health. Not my best work, but not terrible to the point of wanting to give up on it. It wasn't easy at all, but it was a fun little project and writing experiment.
This story is almost complete btw. It's just the final chapters or two I need to continue working on. They're pretty tough, so I hope I can keep within this one-chapter-every-sunday timeline.
submitted by Souhai_Eatery to DaemonXMachina [link] [comments]


2020.09.19 19:17 ImperialArmorBrigade [SP] The Debate Part One: Monsters in Men.

The guards took me by each arm, leaving no chance of deviation or hesitance. We walked past battlements, columns, rows of workers at terminals typing and speaking into head sets, all in neat lines of blue uniforms. A towering set of wooden double doors at the end of the room opened, and at once I was left inside before I could even examine their carving. My arms were free and the doors shut behind me.
I was alone in a massive office. It was two stories tall, with a library on the right and a digital command center on the left. At the far end ahead of me were three ornate stain-glass windows towering over a single desk. A hundred things drew my eye, but her pulled me in first. A portrait of a woman, holding a child and dressed in a hijab. None of this was what I was ready for, but this least of all. The lighting and colors reminded me of a portrait of the Virgin Mary, but this was a different woman- she had jewelry and modern clothing. It sent a chill up my spine but I couldn't look away. I knew the answer literally, but I couldn't help but ask myself rhetorically, "Where am I?"
"My office, on the seventh floor." A book closed behind me and I jumped.
He'd been sitting there at a table I hadn't noticed, on the digital side of the room, reading a book. Waiting for me in complete silence? I had told myself the next time we came face to face I would steel myself better, and stare him down. But all the courage I had melted when we locked eyes, and my hand stung out of memory. I couldn't speak a word.
"Still having trouble with the hand?" he asked. I looked down and realized I was clutching it tightly.
"No."
"Good, I'd hate for you to have any lingering damage to it. Nerve or musculature. Full mobility?"
"Where was this compassion when you shot me?" I found a little of my stowed away courage in the form of resentment.
"To be fair, your hand had a gun in it when we first met. Or rather, it drew one when you saw me."
I had some smart responses I thought of, but none of them would have meant anything to him. Besides, I had agreed to come. I didn't have a whole lot of choice, but I did have questions.
"Who is she?" a standard ice breaker question to redirect the tension.
"My late wife. And daughter."
"Lat- how... how did she die?"
"An assassination attempt on my life failed to kill me, but managed to set my home on fire in a large blaze the fire suppression system couldn't keep up with. She was trying to keep our daughter safe in the top floor of the house. They were cut off when the fire spread to the stairwell."
"I didn't know you had a wife."
"It's not something the western media likes to talk about. It makes me look like less of a monster. More like a human being." I looked into his eyes, dark and tired. Even now, his eyes still felt like I was staring down some other kind of creature. He seemed to sense this. He stood up to meet me.
"You do think I'm a monster, don't you?"
"You started world war three. You caused the deaths of a quarter of a billion people."
"No!" he let the book fall with a thud on the table. "I finished world war three. The last war. The special operator team that broke into my house in the middle of the night, shooting their way through my personal guards, trying to kill me, and murdering my family with phosphorus grenades started world war three!"
"Convenient..."
"Conven- What!? Just what are you suggesting? That I had her killed as excuse for a war I spent years trying to talk down?!" His voice thundered. His eyes widened, and the dark tiredness in his face reddened. This is the face of a man who has killed with his own hands. I should choose wiser words.
"No, no... I..."
"You would not be the first, Mr. Bennet, to have suggested I have planned such things. But let this be the last time you do." He took three large steps forward until the distance between us halved. "I loved her! I would give up everything! Everything! For one more minute with her."
I wanted to point out that he was crowned emperor probably after marrying her, given the date for her death listed below her painting. But I stared into his boiling, narrowed eyes and knew he meant what he said. "Okay. I'm sorry." The words still tasted like ash in my mouth.
He whirled around on his heels, walking toward his desk. "You may not think very much of me, Mr. Bennet, but I picked you very much on purpose. Despite your fugitive status. And not despite, but in fact because of your verdant political opposition to me... but most of all." He turned around at the desk and pressed a button. The screens on the left wall began playing a video, shaking off their idle darkness in an instant. The video was of me, but not one of my posted videos.
It was the helmet cam of a pursuing armored suit. He was chasing me through a warehouse. Myself and Lindsey became trapped in a hallway that went nowhere, trying to bust through locked doors. He came around the corner and began to charge us when the floor caved underneath his metal frame. Metallic arms reached forward, grasping at splintering boards. The voice of the operator could be heard, panicking. The floor beneath the hallway, I remembered, dropped almost 50 feet into a concrete basement foundation. He would have died, more than likely, and I remember hearing his realization in his cries. He didn't expect me to help. That soldier believed he was about to be crushed by his own armor, currently held up by crumbling toothpicks.
But in the video, just as I recall, I dove for him. I grabbed at his shoulders and based my feet against the frames of the walls. "I can't... I can't pull you up!" I yelled. "My- my neck! behind my head, on my armor is an emerg- emergency release." "Lindsey, help! Pull his arms!" She too came to his aid. What the video didn't show is my own panic, tears mixing with sweat, as I tried with one hand to hold on to him and with the other to fumble around angled metal that all felt the same. My voice, pathetically mumbling that I didn't think I could do it, matched my burning fingers, attempting to lift 400 pounds at the worst leverage point. My whole body tightened, remembering the terror of the situation, that I might fall to my death with him. But instead, I found the latch.
The video stopped abruptly. I turned to the emperor. He stared at me with his head resting in his hands. "Mr. Bennet, why did you save one of my officers, who was in active pursuit to arrest you?"
"Because he was going to die."
"Even though he had a chance of trying to arrest you again."
"It was..." I shrugged and gestured.
"The right thing to do. In spite of convenience, or safety, to you."
"Yes."
"Why?"
"Wh... Why? Is it right to save a life?"
"Why, despite all you had to gain otherwise, despite the freedom you thought you were about to lose, did you choose to save his life?"
"I wasn't thinking about my freedom, I was thinking about his life."
"Because?"
"Because life is important?! Is that really such a foreign idea for you to grasp?"
"No, Mr. Bennet, it's not. It's something I'm glad we both understand. So with that in mind, let's talk- why am I a monster?" He pointed to a seat in front of his desk.
I sat, a growing knot of hate and fear and uncertainty growing in my chest. "Let's go back to the 250 million people you killed."
"One- the war in total did not kill 250 million by it's highest. Estimates. Two- and I'll say it again, I didn't start that war. I just finished it. And the whole time I managed the fight, I put emphasis on envelopment and offering the opportunity to surrender. But some people wanted their valiant last stand. I don't blame them for their choices, but their deaths on their heads. As they are on the souls of every civilian who raised arms against my soldiers and met their fates along with the warriors of their nations. And three- The choices we have made, the guiding economics and food and medical distribution we have done has already- ALREADY- saved an estimated hundred and fifty million souls, with an exponentially increasing number."
"That 250 million number comes from the estimates of the left over toxins, mines, weapons, and radiological damage that will kill for generations to come."
"The Toxins? Mr. Bennet the world was already sick from pollution, and the international community would do nothing about it! The arms trade was already in full swing from bickering nations selling to spite one another! There were already whole pits of land where nothing grows and no one goes because of explosives left behind! You're missing the point! We can finally, and finally ARE, focusing on clean up. There are no more mines being created! Anywhere! They're illegal, globally.
I have every border checkpoint under my control- the weapons trade has never been this closer to death. AS WITH drugs, AND human trafficking, AND money laundering. By our best estimates, we're going to be saving an additional 200 million lives each year from now on, and growing. Starvation, civil war, disease. NEVER before has such a coordinated international effort been under way."
"IF you're going to go by the numbers-" I cut in, "Lets not forget to subtract the firing squads. The Suicides. The fire-fights in the streets between gangs and your armored cops. The people who disappear, black-bagged in the middle of the night."
"That DOESN'T happen."
I couldn't help but contort my face, "Doesn't happen!? Let's assume, for a moment, that I believe that... Or- well that I believe that YOU believe it." I was standing now. Our voices had been gradually raising. "How the fuck do YOU know they're not doing it anyway!? You couldn't control these thugs to begin with. They've been corrupt from the-"
"You don't think I know how people work? Lets not forget the demonstration I made, meeting you."
"You're a master of manipulating free will, congratulations."
"I. Know. People. I know how they function. I know you like I know everyone under my command. That's the beauty of it. It's all here, right here." He patted the computer on his desk. "Every step you take, your biases, your fears, your delights, your passions. Each and every person, their statistical modeling. I know you, and each of them, better than they know themselves, and it's all in this little box, or a million like it. When the reformation happened, a few were bound to be left out, but the culture is changing. I'm rebuilding human civilization." Every word he said managed to stay calm, but it grated in my ears like cannon fire.
"So it's you!?" I was livid, now. "The people gone, they didn't live up to your formula!? This is only going to get worse! You can't change human nature with a-!"
The tall double doors opened behind me. Two faceless guards in regal uniforms entered, rifles in arms. "We heard shouting." I couldn't see their eyes, but I knew they were looking at me.
"It's okay." The emperor replied. He breathed deeply. His voice sounded differently this time. Softer, older. I turned to face him. He was lowering his palms to the floor- signaling them to stand down. "Our conversation just touched some nerves. It makes sense." The guards looked at each other briefly, nodded, and left.
I echoed the emperor's deep breaths, and sat down again. He looked me square, and gave one more deep sigh before speaking again.
"You are a libertarian, by nature. To interfere is to restrain, to destroy. It is injustice, inherently. I didn't use to believe that to be a valid view of the world. To me it was lazy, a way of saying you weren't responsible." I had to keep myself from cutting him off. "I am... an interventionist. I see a problem and I have to make sure... I have to see it through. I don't trust it to end the way it needs to. I haven't seen a single major issue, in my life, 'work itself out.' Live and let live doesn't work in a world of greedy, sociopathic, power-hungry men trying to fill every power vacuum they find.
"I don't want a world of firing squads, armored suits, and secret police. I am aware that is the world that I have created, but I have to believe it is a transitional period, because we're out of options."
"You've convinced yourself you're the world's last saving grace?"
"Not me, no. But the system that I, and millions of others, have helped create. We are out of time to do it your way, Samuel. The oceans are rising and are more acidic than ever. Plastic pollution was, before the war, so bad that bits of it were coming with every other can of tuna. The stratosphere is full of satellite parts, breaking apart, sealing us in our own prison of Earth. Do you have any idea the number of children trafficked around the world before the war? That number alone was in the tens of millions. Clean water was growing scarcer, and food was still plentiful. But it was getting around less- We had enough to feed everyone in the world twice over and whole countries were starving. I started this because I could not believe- with all of my education and experience and models, I could not wrap my brain around how people could be so callous.
"For the first time in human history, there are no borders between one man and another. Humanity stands together, not against itself. I'm not saving the human race, it will save itself. If I have to make every human responsible for the way it was sort garbage in labor camps, I'm comfortable with that."
The knot of hate in my stomach was melting, but it was dissolving into a strange cold. The man in front of me had lied before. How could I know if I could trust him? "Even If I believe you, trust you that for once you mean what you say- you seem to be missing the point. The more you attempt to control nature, the more it will rebel against you. What you've started won't end the way you think it will. There's an African proverb that came about in the 20th century. 'Peace does not come-'"
"From men with tanks.' I know it. I spent more time there than you. I know what the world thinks of me. But the world also said what I've already accomplished couldn't be done. The rules are different now, they don't apply anymore."
I leaned back. There may not be any reasoning with him, but I had to choose my next words carefully.
"You never asked why I brought you here."
"I assumed to... question me? Berate me?"
"Well I wouldn't do that myself if that was my plan. I'd have people for that. And I haven't done any of that thus far." He came around the desk and sat on the front to face me. "Until now I believed you and your people were the monsters. I thought you didn't care. Couldn't care, wouldn't care, whichever. You took what you wanted, left the rest to rot, while anyone left struggled to fend for their own lives."
"That would be your kind, that you're thinking of."
"Oh, is that so? Mr. Bennet, your bags are already packed? Would you care to take a trip with me?"
submitted by ImperialArmorBrigade to shortstories [link] [comments]


2020.09.19 06:52 IDetestWhiteGirls Why do people still judge relationships involving white men and women of color and also deny that it's a common thing?

People think only BMWF relationships get hate, it's a bed of roses for us white men when we tell our parents that we're dating, let's say, a black girl... "Meet Kiara, my new gf, isn't she beautiful?" We're naive if we think we're not going to receive at least half-hearted welcome. It's also very disappointing when when we hear our friends saying "Wow, she's really cute... For a black girl."
And we receive tons of judgement too.
We white men get quite a lot of hate for dating outside of our race.
We get accused of fetishizing women of color. This makes women of color self-conscious about dating us.
We get accused of hating our own race.
White men who like Asian women are seen as creepy. Apparently, we only want to date Asian women because "we want to walk over them."
White women claim that we go for women of color because "we're losers that can't handle strong and independent white women" and because "we have a racist fetish." Curiously, it's not us white men who behave like this on social media.
Black men say that we have "bad taste" on women. Or they just get the opportunity to mock black women and call them "bed wenches."
Latina women get called gold diggers and wh*res for dating white men. Some white women have the nerve to joke about "calling ICE on them."
OK, I think I've shown you why relationships between white men and women of color are challenging. What to do about it? It's hard to keep a relationship strong when people throw negativity at you and your partner.
submitted by IDetestWhiteGirls to interracialdating [link] [comments]


2020.09.19 05:51 blozzzzzz JNMIL and JNFIL travel halfway across the country to harass us

So this is currently happening and the preface DFH and I are a team on this and we have each other's backs.
Let's go back thirty minutes ago. I'm having a bath a the hotel me and my DFH are staying at due to his job in the military. I'm relaxing and talking with him when there is a knock on our door. DFH goes to answer it and lo and behold it's his parents outside of our hotel room. They traveled halfway across the country in the middle of a pandemic while leaving their other kid alone without even telling him. They never told us about this and just showed up knocking on our door. We've shooed them away for the time being but I don't know what to do. His mother is terrible and often calls me a wh*re and other words behind my back along with other stories I might tell at a later date. She hates my guts and despises the fact I am eloping with her son. What can I do, this meeting might affect his job because of COVID but this situation will escalate if not dealt with. Please help!!!!!
submitted by blozzzzzz to JUSTNOMIL [link] [comments]


2020.09.18 17:11 Ploto9DZ What processor architecture should I choose ?

So I was thinking of downloading a live image of Debian before installing it but there are so many images that I'm really confused. so any suggestions on which one should I choose ?
My laptop spec:
System: Kernel: 5.8.6-1-MANJARO x86_64 bits: 64 compiler: N/A
parameters: BOOT_IMAGE=/boot/vmlinuz-5.8-x86_64 root=UUID=3eb6f3ad-5767-4869-8316-44365a52609e rw quiet
apparmor=1 security=apparmor resume=UUID=3b69790b-e216-4ce0-ac38-d2f4d8d718f8 udev.log_priority=3
Desktop: KDE Plasma 5.19.5 tk: Qt 5.15.0 wm: kwin_x11 dm: SDDM Distro: Manjaro Linux
Machine: Type: Laptop System: LENOVO product: 20RW v: Lenovo ThinkBook 15-IML serial: Chassis: type: 10
serial:
Mobo: LENOVO model: LVA/LVAB v: NO DPK serial: UEFI: LENOVO v: CJCN29WW date: 06/19/2020
Battery: ID-1: BAT1 charge: 41.6 Wh condition: 44.5/45.0 Wh (99%) volts: 12.7/11.5 model: Celxpert L19C3PF1
type: Li-poly serial: status: Discharging cycles: 26
Memory: RAM: total: 3.36 GiB used: 1.55 GiB (46.0%)
RAM Report: permissions: Unable to run dmidecode. Root privileges required.
CPU: Topology: Quad Core model: Intel Core i5-10210U bits: 64 type: MT MCP arch: Kaby Lake family: 6
model-id: 8E (142) stepping: C (12) microcode: D6 L2 cache: 6144 KiB bogomips: 33615
Speed: 800 MHz min/max: 400/4200 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 800 2: 800 3: 800 4: 800 5: 800 6: 800 7: 800
8: 800
Flags: 3dnowprefetch abm acpi adx aes aperfmperf apic arat arch_capabilities arch_perfmon art avx avx2 bmi1
bmi2 bts clflush clflushopt cmov constant_tsc cpuid cpuid_fault cx16 cx8 de ds_cpl dtes64 dtherm dts epb
ept ept_ad erms est f16c flexpriority flush_l1d fma fpu fsgsbase fxsr ht hwp hwp_act_window hwp_epp
hwp_notify ibpb ibrs ibrs_enhanced ida intel_pt invpcid invpcid_single lahf_lm lm mca mce md_clear mmx
monitor movbe mpx msr mtrr nonstop_tsc nopl nx pae pat pbe pcid pclmulqdq pdcm pdpe1gb pebs pge pln pni
popcnt pse pse36 pts rdrand rdseed rdtscp rep_good sdbg sep smap smep ss ssbd sse sse2 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3
stibp syscall tm tm2 tpr_shadow tsc tsc_adjust tsc_deadline_timer vme vmx vnmi vpid x2apic xgetbv1 xsave
xsavec xsaveopt xsaves xtopology xtpr
Vulnerabilities: Type: itlb_multihit status: KVM: VMX disabled
Type: l1tf status: Not affected
Type: mds status: Not affected
Type: meltdown status: Not affected
Type: spec_store_bypass mitigation: Speculative Store Bypass disabled via prctl and seccomp
Type: spectre_v1 mitigation: usercopy/swapgs barriers and __user pointer sanitization
Type: spectre_v2 mitigation: Enhanced IBRS, IBPB: conditional, RSB filling
Type: srbds mitigation: TSX disabled
Type: tsx_async_abort status: Not affected
Graphics: Device-1: Intel UHD Graphics vendor: Lenovo driver: i915 v: kernel bus ID: 00:02.0 chip ID: 8086:9b41
Device-2: Acer SunplusIT Integrated Camera type: USB driver: uvcvideo bus ID: 1-6:3 chip ID: 5986:2113
Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.20.8 compositor: kwin_x11 driver: intel display ID: :0 screens: 1
Screen-1: 0 s-res: 1920x1080 s-dpi: 96 s-size: 508x285mm (20.0x11.2") s-diag: 582mm (22.9")
Monitor-1: eDP1 res: 1920x1080 hz: 60 dpi: 143 size: 340x190mm (13.4x7.5") diag: 389mm (15.3")
OpenGL: renderer: Mesa Intel UHD Graphics (CML GT2) v: 4.6 Mesa 20.1.7 direct render: Yes
Audio: Device-1: Intel vendor: Lenovo driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel alternate: snd_soc_skl,snd_sof_pci
bus ID: 00:1f.3 chip ID: 8086:02c8
Sound Server: ALSA v: k5.8.6-1-MANJARO
Network: Device-1: Realtek RTL8111/8168/8411 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet vendor: Lenovo driver: r8169 v: kernel
port: 3000 bus ID: 01:00.0 chip ID: 10ec:8168
IF: enp1s0 state: down mac:
Device-2: Realtek vendor: Lenovo driver: rtw_8822ce v: N/A modules: rtw88_8822ce port: 2000 bus ID: 02:00.0
chip ID: 10ec:c82f
IF: wlp2s0 state: up mac:
IP v4: type: dynamic noprefixroute scope: global broadcast:
IP v6: type: noprefixroute scope: link
WAN IP:
Drives: Local Storage: total: 931.51 GiB used: 10.45 GiB (1.1%)
SMART Message: Unable to run smartctl. Root privileges required.
ID-1: /dev/sda vendor: Toshiba model: MQ04ABF100 size: 931.51 GiB block size: physical: 4096 B
logical: 512 B speed: 6.0 Gb/s rotation: 5400 rpm serial: rev: 0E scheme: GPT
Message: No Optical or Floppy data was found.
RAID: Message: No RAID data was found.
Partition: ID-1: / raw size: 923.83 GiB size: 908.32 GiB (98.32%) used: 10.45 GiB (1.2%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sda2
label: N/A uuid: 3eb6f3ad-5767-4869-8316-44365a52609e
ID-2: /boot/efi raw size: 300.0 MiB size: 299.4 MiB (99.80%) used: 280 KiB (0.1%) fs: vfat dev: /dev/sda1
label: N/A uuid: 120B-E6B6
Swap: Kernel: swappiness: 60 (default) cache pressure: 100 (default)
ID-1: swap-1 type: partition size: 7.39 GiB used: 0 KiB (0.0%) priority: -2 dev: /dev/sda3 label: N/A
uuid: 3b69790b-e216-4ce0-ac38-d2f4d8d718f8
Unmounted: Message: No unmounted partitions found.
USB: Hub: 1-0:1 info: Full speed (or root) Hub ports: 12 rev: 2.0 speed: 480 Mb/s chip ID: 1d6b:0002
Device-1: 1-5:2 info: Shenzhen Goodix Goodix FingerPrint Device type: driver: N/A
interfaces: 1 rev: 2.0 speed: 480 Mb/s chip ID: 27c6:55a4
Device-2: 1-6:3 info: Acer SunplusIT Integrated Camera type: Video driver: uvcvideo interfaces: 2 rev: 2.0
speed: 480 Mb/s chip ID: 5986:2113
Device-3: 1-10:4 info: Realtek Bluetooth Radio type: Bluetooth driver: btusb interfaces: 2 rev: 1.0
speed: 12 Mb/s chip ID: 0bda:c02f serial:
Hub: 2-0:1 info: Full speed (or root) Hub ports: 6 rev: 3.1 speed: 10 Gb/s chip ID: 1d6b:0003
Sensors: System Temperatures: cpu: 40.0 C mobo: N/A
Fan Speeds (RPM): N/A
Info: Processes: 221 Uptime: 3h 03m Init: systemd v: 246 Compilers: gcc: 10.2.0 Packages: pacman: 1196 lib: 321
flatpak: 0 Shell: Bash v: 5.0.18 running in: konsole inxi: 3.1.05
submitted by Ploto9DZ to debian [link] [comments]


2020.09.18 00:46 ThrowRAmissinghim247 Feeling awful separated and cheated.

I’ll try to make this really as condensed as possible. My husband ignored me for 10 years. Basically would put interest in everything except me and our child. I tried to get him to have sex with me but I would always get turned down. He never celebrated our anniversary, no romantic gestures, and enjoyed his time more with co workers than me.
Needless to say I let myself go, gained weight and just became a shell of my former self for 8 years.
Then covid happened. I had time to focus on myself. I lost weight, got in great shape and became the hottie I was before my marriage killed me. My husband is extremely good looking. And finally I had his attention again. Except I didn’t want it anymore. I told him I want a divorce. I moved out and I filed.
He then became the man I always wanted him to be. Except he started dating other women. At this point I wasn’t dating anyone. I was shocked he didn’t grieve for our marriage and hurt that within a few days of separation he was already out on dates. I was crushed. He was treating me like I wanted but going out on dates with other women. He said he never did anything physical that it was just dinner dates.
I left for a business trip, crushed and dejected. A guy friend of mine picked me up from the airport. I explained everything to him. I was/am not attracted to him at all. But he was there to listen. That my soon to be ex husband never tried or cared or showed me the love I deserved. My friend was there for me in a place I knew no one and after a few drinks (not an excuse I know!) one thing led to another and we slept together. The next day I hated myself. I had never cheated my entire life. EVER! And while my soon to be ex husband is dating, I actually slept with someone!
When I got home, my soon to be ex husband picked me up from the airport and told me how much he missed me etc. i really love my husband and we slept together. But then I find out he has been talking to another woman (when I asked him about it he lied). I thought we were reconciling but every time I find out there is another woman. And now I am the pot calling kettle black cause I slept with someone. I haven’t dated or talked to any man romantically but now I have this black mark that i slept with someone before our divorce was finalized.
I want my husband back. But I don’t know now. Cause I slept with someone else and he lied about dating...
I haven’t told him I slept with someone else (it was awful). But I want to and I’m worried about STDs (I got tested and waiting for results).
I’ve always been faithful until now. We were separated pending divorce decree and he was dating other women, but I still feel like a complete wh*re.
What do I do? Do I tell him? Do I just keep on path calling it quits? Obviously if I test positive for a std I will have to tell him. But I love him and want it to work, but I can’t trust him and certainly he cannot trust me (he told me he did not want to know if I was dating any other man, don’t ask don’t tell).
I’m completely torn inside.
submitted by ThrowRAmissinghim247 to relationship_advice [link] [comments]


2020.09.18 00:38 20021211 Great news, everyone!

https://www.facebook.com/hildatheseries/posts/1193999957653899
"We are so excited to announce the HILDA virtual panel at New York Comic Con! Come see the show creator Luke pearson and the voice of Hilda, Bella Ramsey along with Season 2 EXCLUSIVE clips and sneak peeks. The panel will also include Stephanie Simpson (Head Writer), Andy Coyle (Director from Mercury Filmworks) and Emerald WrightCollie (Moderator). Official date & time to follow soon! "
submitted by 20021211 to HildaTheSeries [link] [comments]


2020.09.17 18:04 UndulatingSky Guys I just realized Priyanka Chopra is dating a wh*te "person"

Where is her home address and what is the password to her security system? I just want to talk I swear I'm not going to brutally murder her guys
submitted by UndulatingSky to ABCDCircleJerk [link] [comments]


2020.09.17 14:05 Mad_Scientist_II I have found a pathway across the multiverse

As the title suggests, I somehow found a method to access different universes. This story is not one of scientific discovery or one filled with adventure and exploration of all the possible roads mankind could have taken across history, but a warning for those who will attempt this after I have finished my tale. Why am i telling you this then? I figured at some point in the future, someone will stumble upon this method, the same way I did, and will try for themselves to see what could have been or even worse, tell others about it. I want to prevent the unnecessary suffering caused by the knowledge of what happens beyond our universe. I will explain when and how it happened. As for why, I still can't fully understand, but I have a theory I will get to later.
It happened during a summer night. I was awake, facing the unbearable heat while my family was asleep. Sleepless nights where I am forced to reflect upon my thoughts were a common occurrence as of late. The most common thought, one that has probably plagued many people before me and will plague even more after I pass on, is what might have been if something else happened. Of course, this is just a generalization. This is the core of countless questions, some milder than others. Some might ask "What might have happened if I didn't slack off during college? Wouldn't I have been in a better position in life, instead of being stuck in the endless repetition that I call "my job"?". Others may think, "What might have happened if I asked that cute girl or guy at the bar out? Would I now be happily married with kids and not having to deal with this crippling sense of loneliness?". On a grander scale, historians might ask what would have happened if one leader or another followed a different path, resulting thus in their grand victory or humiliating defeat.
As for me, I was simply trying to remember what choices I made that led me to this point in my life. It wasn't a bad point, but it wasn't that exciting either. With this in mind, I finally fell asleep. Dreams have always fascinated me, with both the incredible worlds that the mind can create to the horrific nightmares that can make you feel a sense of dread for the rest of the following day. Lucid dreams in particular are some of the most amazing things a person can experience. Being able to shape the world around you is simply fantastical. When i ended up in the REM phase of my sleep and finally entered the dream itself, I could tell right away that I was lucid. But there was something odd about it. Even though I was fully aware, there was nothing around me. Everywhere I looked, it was an empty, white void that seemed to stretch endlessly. After the initial shock, I tried creating something, anything, but it was pointless. After wondering what should I do in this empty canvas that i found myself in, I saw something in the distance. A small, black dot that appeared out of nowhere. With nothing better to do, I went towards it. As I was getting closer, that one small dot was separating into thousands, and then hundreds of thousands, and finally millions of small dots. When i finally reached them, I realized they weren't just small dots. As far and wide as the eye can see in the vast nothingness that I was floating in, rows of screens were showing me all kinds of images. From a warm campfire, calling you near it with the promise of warmth and comfort, surrounded by people I didn't recognize, yet feeling like I could trust them, in a forest so dense that you couldn't see outside of the welcoming light of the fire, to the hell-scape that is a war battlefield, with mountains of deceased people, pools of crimson blood that would make even the toughest people I know squirm with fear, surrounded by what seemed to be enemy forces.
In the end, I chose to look at something relatively normal, a person just walking in a city. The city itself was mildly interesting, with some old buildings, some of which you could see through the holes in the walls, showing the architectural history of the town I was into, contrasting with the modern buildings that would make even Asimov proud. Unconsciously, I was reaching for the screen with my hand as I was admiring the images. Suddenly, the person stopped moving. There was no rhyme or reason to it. They just stood there so still, he looked like he was posing for a painting. As I tried to move to a different screen, the person moved in the same way. That was the moment I have realized that I have become the person in the screen. The person was a guy, dressed in a black suit, strolling in the late evening, most likely trying to relax after a workday. That is when someone called from behind me.
Turning around, I saw a lady walking towards me. She was one of the most beautiful persons I saw in my entire life. Her bright red lips, her luscious red hair, her piercing emerald eyes, her face that seemed to be sculpted by a master in his craft and the red velvet dress she was wearing could make even Aphrodite jealous. "Ok I get it. You didn't like how the waiter talked to you, and you are right, but please wait for me after storming out". I was confused. I tried telling her "Sorry, you must have gotten the wrong person", but what actually came out of my mouth was "You're right, I am sorry darling, you know how i can get sometimes". I was taken aback by the fact that I couldn't control what I wanted to say. Not only that, but i could barely control my movements, and even then in very small increments, forcing me to go along with this person's will. As I was walking with the lady in hand, in search of a new restaurant, I was thinking that since I couldn't control the body I was in and it looked completely different from mine, I must be dreaming that i am another person entirely. I woke up after reaching the new restaurant.
It was the next day. After remembering what I dreamed last, I was surprised to be sure, but I rationalized it by saying that I had stranger dreams in the past. While getting ready to face the day, I noticed that I was crankier than usual. Lack of sleep does that to me, so I wasn't concerned. The rest of the day was relatively normal, until a certain point. Greeted my family, ate my breakfast and got ready for work. The traffic was normal for this hour and the weather was a bit better than the scorching heat from yesterday. However, the day got odd when I reached the building I was working in. As i was entering the building, there was someone behind me. Since I didn't sleep that well last night, I was walking slower, resulting in them bumping into me, spilling some coffee on my work clothes. The person started apologizing frantically, but i tried to assure her that it was alright. She looked familiar, but at the time I couldn't say why, since I've never seen her before. While reaching my desk, thinking on how to deal with today's tasks, I met with John, a good friend from the company. We talked a bit before our supervisor came in and told us we had a new colleague.
That's when it hit me. That lady, the same that I bumped into at the entrance of the building and as of now our new accountant in our division, was the same as the lady I dreamed of the previous night. Initially, I couldn't believe it, but the resemblance was uncanny. The way she walked with a grace resembling the grace of someone that was born into aristocracy, the kindness in her voice that could soothe anyone, the simple fact that she seemed a genuinely a good person and most importantly, those eyes that you could look forever into, were all identical to the lady in the red dress. I didn't approach her in fear I might have accidentally mention the dream I had of her. Everyone in the office got along with her as if she has always been part of our team. Even John, one of the shyest persons I know, said that when he was around her, he would feel more energetic and that all his worries were disappearing.
At the end of the day, when I finally reached my bed, I tried piecing everything, thinking how was it possible to dream of someone I was unaware existed, but in the end I thought it was a simple coincidence, and I fell asleep. I was in the same white void, but this time I was already at the multitude of screens. In front of me was the screen I looked at last night. I moved a few rows down and chose another screen, this time fully prepared to enter. It was a party at a villa. The loud music blaring through my ears could be heard from kilometers away. The alcohol was running in rivers, the people were dancing and the night was full of that specific atmosphere you can get only during the craziest parties. It seemed I was the owner of the house and the host of the party, mostly because everywhere I went, people were saying how much fun they were having and how I should host parties more often. In the end, the thing that caught my eye was a certain someone. As you might have guessed, it was the new colleague, dancing away, this time dressed in a more casual way. I was distracted by her and didn't notice when I bumped into one of the dancers, a mountain of a man. Unfortunately, he was reeking of vodka. He started picking a fight with me and hit me squarely in the nose. The pain felt incredibly real, almost as if I was hit by a professional boxer.
When I came back, my pillow had a red stain on it. I rushed to the bathroom and my nose was bleeding. At the time, I was less worried about a mere nose-bleed and more worried of arriving late, and so I brushed it off. Went to work, completed some tasks, talking with John, the usual. However, the lady came to our desk and started chatting me up.
"Hi, I hope I am not interrupting something important, I just wanted to say I am still sorry for what happened two days ago."
"It's alright, happens to everyone at some point."
"I was just about to take my lunch break anyway. Want to come with me?"
"Sorry, but I still have some things to finish, I will come in a few."
After John left, I saw a distinctive glint in our colleague's eye.
"Thank you for not getting mad, usually I'm not that clumsy. What's your name?"
"I'm Mark."
"Nice to meet you Mark, I'm Haylee."
Me and Haylee talked a bit and we seemed to hit it off. To my surprise, John joined our chat once he came back and he seemed more talkative than usual. After works hours, me and Haylee ended up alone. She asked me on a date and obviously, I agreed. Nothing unusual happened after that. During daytime I spent time with both Haylee and John in the office and with Haylee be it at the cinema or the local park, eventually becoming a couple and moving together. During nighttime I went into the void, exploring vast scenarios, be it a member of the mafia, or an astronaut, or a doctor, or whatever I felt like doing in the moment. I explored all the pleasures life can give you without a care in the world. Looking back, the pleasures were just a veil over my eyes, keeping me blissfully unaware of what was actually beyond my escapades.
There were a few similarities across the different scenarios i explored. The first was that no matter what scenario I ended up living, I wasn't able to fully control the body I inhabited and as a result, I was a hitchhiker of another person's life. The second was that in some capacity or another, Haylee was always present, be it a picture of her, a person interacting with the other people in the dream or even just her voice on the radio. The third was that I couldn't see myself in the mirror, the reflection being always fuzzy. The final thing was that no matter how much I tried leaving the void or one of the screens, until I woke up, I was stuck there. These things didn't bother me much in the beginning since I felt good regardless.
It didn't last long however. I started getting tricked by the screens, thinking I was in for a good time but ending up either mentally or physically hurt. Be it walking down a peaceful alley and getting shot by a robber, drinking at the bar and hit with a bottle square in the head or even being physically assaulted with bats at my own wedding. Every time I woke up from these horrific incidents, there was either a scar where I was cut or a bruise where I was hit. I dreaded going to sleep now, since there was no escape. I couldn't just stay in the void either, because sooner or later, one of the screens would suck me in. The worst was the last screen I went into. This time I was a presidential candidate during my first run. I was doing well in the polls and the people seemed to like me. I was walking to my house when I suddenly saw nothing but black. I got pushed into a car and I didn't know where i was going. We seemed like we drove for hours until finally we stopped. I got out of the car, went into a building and got tied to a chair.
They took the bag of my face and I finally understood what was going on. In this particular dream, there was a small faction strongly opposed to my ideas. They called themselves "The League of True Freedom" and were considered controversial to say the least. They were known for underhanded tactics such as blackmail and instigating violence against those who weren't fully committed to their cause. Their leader told me to either drop of the race or support the consequences. I wanted to lie to them, saying I was dropping and alerting the police of what they are capable of doing, but what came out of my mouth was "I'll never drop because of some threats a small, insignificant band of criminals could say".
That's when they started. They brought knives, metal bars, surgery tools and some other instruments I couldn't see clearly and have began torturing me until I dropped out. I kept trying to wake up but I couldn't, no matter how severe the pain was. I don't want to describe what I have been through, because if I start thinking about the agonizing moments spent in that world, I would feel the horror again. At one point however, they wanted to humiliate me and have brought a mirror so I could see the deplorable state I was in. I looked in the mirror and for the first time I saw my reflection. And what I saw was none other than myself in the suit I wore the day I was kidnapped, beaten to a pulp.
Then, that's when Haylee showed up. I kept looking at her, not knowing how she got here, but they couldn't see her. She came close to me, touched my forehead and my consciousness was lifted. I was back in the vastness of the white void I kept finding myself in every night. All the screens were gone and in front of me was none other than Haylee, dressed all in white.
"I must admit, finding you this time was a bit harder than usual"
"Wh-what happened? How are you here Haylee?"
"You simply were unfortunate enough to choose a life that was about to end. If I didn't intervene, you wouldn't have come back from there."
"About to end?! These were dreams! If I died, I would've just woke up."
"You didn't figure it out huh? They weren't just dreams. To you, they might have been, but in reality they were all your lives. Didn't you think even once how come whenever you suffered in your "dream", your suffering came with you?"
"How is that possible? I have only one life."
"Every day since you were born, you made a choice, and that choice was reflected in the creation of new lives. Whenever you visited your other lives, your body from your world was connected to the body from the life you've chosen to observe, thus being able to feel what you went through."
"If that's the case, where am I then?"
"This is my realm. While you see only a small section filled with screens, those of which reflect your choices, I see every possible choice made by every single human that lived or will live. That's why it took a while to find this particular consciousness this time."
"Who are you?"
"I have many names, depending on which region you happen to find yourself into. For now, Hypnos will suffice."
"Isn't Hypnos the goddess of sleep?"
"Indeed. I do not know how or why you're here, but I had let you stay because it was interesting seeing someone jump around experiencing their other lives."
"Why did you come to the real world then if you could see me throughout all my other lives then?"
"It was merely a pure curiosity. I can leave this realm and interact with every single life possible, but for the first time, someone from your kind came intro my world. I wanted to determine what was different about you. No one across the multiverse, not even your other versions, managed to access my domain. But I have seen enough. The last life should be a warning to you. Infinite choices, infinite possibilities, some more painful than others. From now on, you'll never be able to access this realm again. And if I ever see another human in the void, I won't be as forgiving. Good bye Mark."
That's when I finally woke up. The wounds suffered from the torture were still there, however they were closed already, leaving only the ugly scars of a broken man. Thankfully, my family wasn't home, so they didn't notice me washing the blood that soaked my bed. I arrived late at work but I managed to clean most of it. John looked at me and I saw his face turn pale. He could see that I have been through something horrible, but I never said what happened. He asked me about Haylee since she didn't come for work today. I said I didn't know. Obviously, Hypnos didn't have a reason to step in my world anymore, and so everyone thought she just left. As for my dreams, I finally was able to return to my normal, actual dreams, as she said. When I went to the hospital, the doctors were shocked I wasn't dead, since the body seemed to suffer far more damage than what is thought is humanly possible.
As for how I ended up in her realm to begin with, I have a theory. Carl Jung proposed the idea of the "collective unconscious", saying that individuals of the same species share the same unconscious mind, filled with universal symbols and motifs. What I propose is that the collective unconscious isn't shared just between the individuals of the same species, but the same individual across multiple worlds. Tapping into it would allow someone to enter their minds from another timeline of events. I do not know how i tapped into this in the first place, but if you ever manage to wander into a white void filled with screens, you should try your hardest to wake up, before you end up in one of the screens or even worse, meet the god of a realm that shouldn't be accessible to humans. If we are capable to inflict such horrors onto ourselves, I do not wish to know what a god with all the time and lives in the multiverse can do.
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2020.09.16 16:48 nauticalnausicaa There's a reason you have to hold your breath going past a cemetery (final)

Part 2
Sarah sacrificed herself for me, and yet here I was, listening to the whispered words of the dead man who killed her.
"Have you truly never been told the whole piece?" The man was more bone than flesh, with no lips to cover his fractured teeth. "Yes, yes, hold your breath when you cross a cemetery, lest the dead steal your breath. Truly, you don't think we can do that, do you? We don't even have our own breath, we have no power."
I furrowed my brow, not dropping the heavy branch I'd been guarding myself with. "Then what happened to Sarah? I literally watched you kill her. I saw how pale she got, and the dark ruin of her mouth..." I trailed off, immersed in the grotesque image of my friend in death.
The dead man sighed, a hollow whistling sound as it rattled through his bare bones, having no lungs to breathe. "The dead will only get your breath if you let us. You let us when you strike a deal."
"A deal? What kind of deal can you get with a dead guy, you also get to die? Like, what can you do that's so appealing, someone would be willing to die for it?" I paced a few steps in a tight perimeter, my distress turning physical. My fingers flexed and relaxed around the broken branch I had found. It was smooth where I held it, but not as soothing as it would have been in any other situation.
The corpse rubbed his bony hands together, loose bits of washed-pink tendon still fluttering in the movement. "Mmmmm...we are dead, meaning we are separate from the living. What the living has, we have the reversal. It's the duality of existence. Your kind's kids play with dolls, my kind's play with sharp bits of glass. You eat rich foods and fresh fruit, we eat worms and the dirt and whatever is buried within it.
But," he pauses, his remaining eye glinting in excitement, "you have limitations because of the criteria you need met to hold on to fragile existence. We do not.
What if I told you that Sarah had bargained with me? Not just today, which is why she brought you here, mind you. This time, she was going to ask for more than she had yet, and was going to need to give more for it."
He stopped there, letting me absorb everything he just told me. Me? What role could I have had in this when I hadn't even spoken to Sarah in years? My head was buzzing, still in shock. It had been a hard day, forgive me for processing this shit slowly.
"Wh...what kind of bargain?" I asked hoarsely.
"Sarah has brought me several before you. I took the breath of her friends over years while she met great windfalls of money. I breathed her sister away ages ago so that Sarah would be more loved. I believe you were to be a sacrifice of breath in turn for removing her ability to feel guilt." That one eye twinkled at me again, punctuating that final word. I felt nausea kicking around my guts like a little soccer player.
A hot dose of anger washed over me. "So she wasn't sorry at all," I mused, my eyes narrowed. "She just wanted to fucking use me, torment me. FUCK, has nothing changed?" My voice rose as I grew enraged, grinding my teeth.
The dead man pulled his body into a slightly more upright position. "Maybe nothing has changed, Adelaide. But you can do something about that."
I raised an eyebrow. "Are you trying to strike a deal?"
He tilted his head in a half-shrug, half-"follow me" gesture. I sat on the patchy grass by him on the mound of his gravesite. "Wouldn't it feel amazing to see the look on Sarah's face when you've brought forth an effigy of her to torment as you please? Wouldn't you love to see the terror and pain in her eyes as you do to her as she's done to you? Don't you want to feel that kind of power?"
I smiled at the man. He is offering me peace, quietude, stillness for even just a moment. Emboldened by my response, he continued. "She was nothing but evil to you. She only ever meant you harm. You have the power to make her feel how you felt."
I considered his offer; how my coffee date had been so nice, how my friend had been so pointedly mean to me every other time before that. Except for her apology.
I looked at the corpse pensively. I think he was trying to look casual while I dithered, but nonchalance was absolutely stripped of him when the insects stripped him of his flesh.
He killed Sarah, after all. He killed my tormentor. "You killed my friend," I told him, my smile never fading. I hoisted the broken branch up higher in my arms. "And, you lying little shit, I saw her sister this morning."
With that, I wound up and struck him with my branch like a baseball bat. The dead man had no time to react, probably a downgrade of being dead. Muscle wastage, dimmed cognitive activity...
A sharp crack sounded through the cemetery. Something came spilling from the wound in his skull, something thin and inky black. The smell was like iron and pepper, acrid and biting. The dead man was screaming, and I landed another blow with the tree limb across his chest.
Thwack.
Thwack.
Thwack.
He wasn't screaming anymore.
It wasn't until the sun was so low in the sky that my vision dimmed that I stopped. The corpse was unmoving, having long gone silent. There was only a small pool of black exudate remaining, and it burnt through the dry grass at the man's gravesite.
I dropped my branch, and slowly headed toward the gates of the cemetery. Thoroughly exhausted, I took in deep, tremorous breaths.
I chuckled wheezily to myself: I guess the dead man had stolen my breath, after all.
submitted by nauticalnausicaa to nosleep [link] [comments]


2020.09.16 00:38 ComunCoutinho Kama's interlude translation

Interlude: Love/Corruption is always by your side

Mash: da Vinci... We need to have a very important talk.
da Vinci: Oh, I know. This is a concern we can’t overlook. Not treating it is not an option. We could be too late for it, even. At this point, we should even be considering means to do it by force.
Mash: Is it really that bad…? Yeah… it is. I… understand. I'll do anything necessary, no matter who objects. Because this problem is not just ours… Have you already told Master?
da Vinci: I just called them before you came in. They should be here at any moment n-
[Fujimaru opens the door]
Fujimaru: Hello. / da Vinci called me here. Is there anything you need?
da Vinci: Sorry for calling on such a short notice. We got some pretty important we need to talk. It’s-
[Fujimaru starts falling asleep]
Fujimaru: (Huh…?)
[Fujimaru collapses]
Mash: Ah! S-stay strong, Master! Master…!
da Vinci: This is terrible! Call the infirmary immediately, ask for a stretcher.
[Fujimaru wakes up in the CCC classroom, hearing lots of students talking with each other]
Fujimaru: H-huh…? I’m in…. / A classroom…?
???: Good morning. How late must have you gone to sleep last night to be able to take naps between one class and the other?
[Kama appears, in her second Ascension]
Fujimaru: Huh? Why…
Kama: What’s wrong? Are you still half-asleep? Don’t tell me you forgot who I am?
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Fujimaru: Who…? / I didn’t forget you, Kama.
Kama: Sheesh. Some jokes are just not okay. I’m Kama. Your classmate… and girlfriend, remember?
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Fujimaru: Who…? / I didn’t forget you, Kama.
Kama: Yes, that’s me, Kama. Can’t have you forget me. I’m the classmate you’re dating with. I’ll get mad if you bully me, you know? Blep.
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Fujimaru: Yes, my girlfriend. My girlfriend and… / You’re also a Servant, right…?
Kama: Hmm, seems like the effects are not perfect in my current state. Well, it seems like you’ve accepted the bare minimum premise, so I guess that’s enough… Anyways, Fujimaru. I’m the lovey-dovey (lol) girlfriend you connected your heart to, and this is our usual classroom. That’s all you need to know. Can you see our quiet and fun lives?
[All classmates shown in this section are wearing their Ascension or Costume that looks the most like a school uniform]
Nero: Aye, I beat you barely. This PE class we just came back from showed me you are talented! Come on, it is still not too late. How about you quit the Assassin club and aim for the imperial championship in my club?!
X: I’ll never! I already told you dozens of times, the Saber club is my greatest enemy! The only club playing for our school in the national championship is my Assassin club, which is the REAL Saber club, and you know it very well. When you’re coming home back from school, take the paths with the most viaducts and dark alleys, please!
Mordred: Ugh, this sucks. The next class is so boring. Should I ditch it?
Astolfo: Oh, great idea. I’m going with you.
X Alter: Agreed… The school shop has a very limited amount of potato yokan, so this must be the most guaranteed route to get one.
El-Melloi II (Young): Hey, stop right there. You forgot who the teacher in this class is? As the class representative, he’ll yell at me instead of yelling at you!
Brynhild: … (Knitting in silence)
Caesar: Hmmmmmmm. I knew this next semester’s budget wouldn’t be easy to manage. Where should I be cutting expenses from…
Jekyll: Can I help you? You shouldn’t hesitate to ask for help from a fellow student council member.
Caesar: No, you do your own job, secretariat. I want my job as easy as possible, but I alone am enough. [Ceasar thinks of Arjuna] It is a job our dear “fair and impartial” student council president tossed directly to me. He did it because he thinks I can do it. Then I must. I cannot lose to him in the upcoming elections and I cannot lose to him here either.
Suzuka Gozen: Howdy, peeps. I’m hecking late.
Minamoto no Raikou: Won’t you even apologize for it, Suzuka?! How many classes do you think you already missed?
Suzuka Gozen: Yo, that’s not my fault. It’s was pretty much all Nagiko’s fault actually.
Sei Shounagon: Ahahahaha, you wouldn’t believe how many people line up for just a cup of tapioca! It’s like we live in a society!
Fujimaru: Are those… all of our classmates?
Kama: Yes, they are. Some classmates are your friends, some aren’t. There’s nothing out of the ordinary in this school environment. There’s nothing you need to worry about in this peaceful spectacle. And to top it off, you have me as your girlfriend. Life couldn’t be happier, could it? No, it couldn’t. Now, Fujimaru, let’s make out. Let’s see, I just analyzed all the wishes in your deep psyche and… you want us to drink some juice from the same bottle, listen to music sharing a pair of headphones, and…? Huh, is this really enough for you? Everything listed here feels too platonic. Now you’re getting me embarrassed. You really don’t wanna do it hidden behind the school or in the gym warehouse? You don’t need to hold back on anything. Show me more of the desires on the bottom of your heart. I got it, how about I give you a nickname? As your girlfriend, I should be calling you by a cute pet name.
Medusa: Sorry for the stupid question, but… you’re not planning on calling them senpai, are you?
Kama: Wha, don’t scare me like that. What are you talking about, classmate Rider? Are you glitching? Ok, I admit my first idea was to spice the backstory with this minute age gap. But ultimately I decided against calling you senpai by default because I always choking on the word for whatever reason. Maybe the word doesn’t sit well with this body? Whatever, that’s why I decided to make us the same age. That’s the most classic trope, no?
Medusa: Is that’s so…? I didn’t understand anything, but ok, understood. No matter what you’re doing, even if you’re no longer yourself, seeing you smile next to people you love makes everything right. After all you’ve been through, anything is better than seeing you cry.
Kama: …? With all the preexisting data I’m recycling, it’s no surprise not every single line of dialogue is going as scripted. Well, as long as Master is still under control enough to preserve the general flow of events, it doesn’t really matter.
Fujimaru: Not sure what’s going on, but I think she’s worried about you.
Kama: Huuuh…? I don’t recall my divinity having any relationship to Greek antiheroes… but I can’t deny I care about her. I heard her land has Eros, apparently a divinity very similar to mine, so maybe that’s why? Yeah, that sounds about right. Don’t sweat the details! Anyways, we already enjoyed the interval mood enough already. Next up is…
[Kayneth enters the room]
Teacher: How noisy. Are you the new first-year students? To your seats. Class is about to begin. May our studies today be refined as always. Study responsibly as you savor your mundane happiness.
[The school bell rings]
Kama: Time for a fun class. By the way, my seat is right next to yours. Should I keep you entertained aaaaaall class long, like the good girlfriend I am…?
[Time skip as Kayneth continues to write on the blackboard]
Teacher: …and therefore, the concept of Noblesse Oblige is a moral duty, not a legal one…
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Fujimaru: (Exchanges glances) / (Exchanges notebook scraps)
[Fujimaru looks at Kama a few times]
Kama: C’mon, there's nothing wrong with taking glances at your girlfriend in the next seat, but you’re overdoing it. How often will you keep looking? Not that I mind.
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Fujimaru: (Exchanges glances) / (Exchanges notebook scraps)
Kama: Ehh… You really want to know that? Well, fine by me… [Kama writes her own note and passes] Yeah, that’s right. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover, I’m full of surprises… but you knew that already. [Fujimaru passes one more note] You’re so much more eloquent in text… I can see you’re the type to send late night messages and regret it the next morning.
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Kama: Huhuhu. I already had my share of fun playing girlfriend in class… Time to move one to the next phase.
[Kama approaches]
Fujimaru: …?
Teacher: Hey! What are you two thinking you’re doing? No making out in class… Though I understand how you feel, of course, I most certainly do. I once had a fiancée and she…
[Someone crashes the classroom windows]
Teacher: Wh-what’s this?
Terrorist A: WOOOOO, sorry for the intrusion, we’re evil terrorists!
Terrorist B: We completely occupied the school! And we’re taking everyone in this class as hostages! Don’t move! We’ll kill you if you do!
[The two terrorist start shooting everywhere]
Fujimaru: This was very sudden.
Kama: So, what should we do? I don’t think we have much of a choice in this scenario. Our dear classmates might die if we don’t take them out. We hid our powers to pretend to be regular students… But now is the time for us to unleash them.
Fujimaru: What are our hidden powers?
Kama: C’mon, did you forget everything? You’re an elite spy from a confidential government organization, returned from war, and a trained counter-terrorism professional, remember?
Fujimaru: Now that you mention it, yeah, I am. / My identity… will be exposed to everyone…?!
Kama: Yeah, that’s what we’re doing here. Stop questioning the script before it gets annoying. And I, your girlfriend, am the only one who knows your secret. I’m something of a partner and official love interest. I’ll get into a moderate amount of danger while we fight together, so make sure to awaken your powers and save me, ok? Yes… Savor the catharsis you desire. Feel good from the bottom of your heart. But only here…
[Battle against 6 terrorists. You must have Kama on the first row. When the battle starts, Partner and Official Love Interest activates, giving Kama a permanent irremovable NP gain buff and all her Skill cooldowns advance 2 per turn instead of just 1. Every time a terrorist dies, they activate “WHY THERE’S A GUY LIKE THIS HEREEEE”, giving a permanent defense debuff to all other terrorists, including the ones on the backrow.]
(We beat terrorists, interacted with a mysterious transfer student, faced against the Secret Student Council… A lot happened today, but now our school day is finally over…)
Fujimaru: Whew, today was a fun day…
Kama: Really? I’m glad it was. It feels so wonderful to be your girlfriend. Still, is this what your student life was like? Just a school, a girlfriend, friends, a teacher… Honestly, this format was a nice new experience to me.
Fujimaru: You say it like / you never dated or had friends before…?
Kama: … You’re right. As you may already know, I had a spouse named Rati, goddess of lust. And a friend name Vasanta, god of the spring. Oh well… the current me only knows all this as just objective facts. I don’t feel it too clearly as things I’ve personally experienced. You definitely knew that part, didn’t you? You know very well how Servants works. Us silhouettes recorded in Human Order show humans but one side of the real deal. Especially for a god of many facets like me. That’s why I can’t say I know them… I don’t know what kind of love did the original love god Kama hold for them. Or… what kind of love did they hold for Kama. [Pause] Wait, what am I talking about? Ignore the worthless monologue. How pointless. Though, when is anything I do ever not pointless? I got way too carried away trying out this new premise. Yes, a modern Japanese school can be a perfect stage for indulgent love, ugly love, dirty love, pristine love, all rolled together. I'm feeling a high affinity to this setting. Huhu, I liked it. Sounds like the most comfy place to build myself a sanctuary… Just kidding. But you must be tired of it already. Let’s replace these stage props. Enjoy the next show!
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[Arrow 2 opens on the Oniland amusement park. Kama is on first Ascension.]
Fujimaru: Huh… I’m in an… amusement park…?
Kama: Why are you spacing out, dad? Yes, we’re in the amusement park.
Fujimaru: DA...!? (Dies from shock)
Kama: Mom unfortunately couldn’t come with us, but you promised this for so long that you decided to bring me anyways, remember? What a shame. She’s always so tired from work, so she really could use this day off… Ehehe, thank you for this. I love you, dad!

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Fujimaru: I love you two! As much as you love me! / My dear daughter… A Servant…?
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Fujimaru: I love you two! As much as you love me! / My dear daughter… A Servant…?
Kama: Yeah yeah, real funny, can you stop now? You just need to maintain the charade now. Immerse yourself from the bottom of your heart. All I’m doing here is just for you.
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[Kama runs off to the attractions]
Kama: Hurry, hurry! You’ll get late for the ride, dad!
Fujimaru: Don’t run. / Stay close or you’ll get lost.
[We reach the place where the attractions and Mephistopheles are]
Kama: Yay! So many rides! Which will we go to?
Clown: Weeeeeeeeeeelcooooooooome! I see you’re wondering what to enjoy first, and I must say: that’s the spirit! As the clown in this dreamland that is our Wonder Joyful Dream Theme Park, I must welcome you with utmost gratitude, emotion and hospitality! This a gift, on the house! It’s a perfectly ordinary balloon, eeheeheeheehee!
Kama: A balloon. Thank you, mr. clown!
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Fujimaru: This clown looks dangerous to leave alone with a child. / You’re not taking lost children anywhere, are you?
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Fujimaru: This clown looks dangerous to leave alone with a child. / You’re not taking lost children anywhere, are you?
Clown: Well guessed! I take all of them… to lost children office in the backyard!
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Clown: Oh me, oh my, why must us clowns be such a suspicious profession! I have never done anything questionable, you know? Never! You can’t hear any tictac from this balloon, can you? The sound you’re hearing is coming from somewhere else, no?
Fujimaru: …?
Kama: Ignore it, it’s just foreshadowing.
Clown: In any event, I just want to you enjoy this Something Park to the boooone!? And that was my last line of dialogue! Sad!
[Mephisto runs off]
Kama: Must suck to be scary when you’re a clown. Yeah, I think he really should rethink this idea of having a job that spreads love. There’s no guarantee anyone will like you back… Anyways, where are we going first? I can’t choose. You chose, dad!
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Fujimaru: They’re doing a superhero show over there. / Let’s go talk to the mascots. / The merry-go-round is a classic.
[We watch a battle between Assassin Okita and a Mecha Chibi Nobu]
Kama: Waah, get them, Shinsen Black. Uh, she said she’ll lose because we’re not cheering loud enough! Oh no, you need to cheer with me, dad!
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Fujimaru: Here’s your chance! Land the final Jet Sandanzuki! / G-get them… (blushing)
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Fujimaru: Here’s your chance! Land the final Jet Sandanzuki! / G-get them… (blushing)
Kama: C’mon! You’ll make her lose!? Cheer more! More!
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Shinsen Black: Thank you! I couldn’t have defeated the evil Nobbu without your cheers! Now go buy our merch at the tent over there! Don’t miss out on our great deal, pickled radish that comes with a ticket for a hand shake!
[The crowd applauds]
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Fujimaru: They’re doing a superhero show over there. / Let’s go talk to the mascots. / The merry-go-round is a classic.
[We go to a mini Edison]
Mascot A: Huhahaha! Being fluffy is the first principle of mascotmanship! You may gather around me, children! On top of being safe, I also light up.
[A mini Paracelsus is also there]
Mascot B: Huhuhu… Sorry for not being fluffy. Well, not exactly. As a plushie, I should be at very least soft. What’s my gimmick? Uh, I can perform an alchemy show. I accept unofficial participants. I just need you to sign this contract…
Kama: Wah! They’re both really cute!
Fujimaru: Are they… really…?
Kama: They’re adorbs! Can I take a photo with them?
[We take one photo of Kama with each mascot]
Kama: Ehehe, my treasures now.
Fujimaru: (Well, if she’s happy, that’s all it matters…)
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Fujimaru: They’re doing a superhero show over there. / Let’s go talk to the mascots. / The merry-go-round is a classic.
[We head to the merry-go-round]
Red Hare: I’m Lu Bu, not a horse, but I’m ok with playing the role of horse in this merry-go-round! Now, hop in little lady. (Said with an unnecessarily good voice)
Kama: Yay! [Kama hops on the horse] Dad, can you see me? This is so nice, I wasn’t expecting it to be this fast!
Fujimaru: I see you, dear. / Hold tight to the horse, it’s dangerous!
Kama: Okaaaay!
[The merry-go-round goes a few laps]
Fujimaru: (Seeing her like this,) / (I can really appreciate how cute my kid is…)
-------------------------------------------
[Later, on the food court]
Kama: *chew* This hot dog is so good, dad!
Fujimaru: You got some ketchup on your cheeks.
[Fujimaru wipes their daughter’s cheeks, flustering her hard]
Kama: Wait, don’t act so naturally wiping my cheek. I’m not a child… Wait, I am a child. Your child. Cough, cough. Ok, I’m back in character… This tasted so good! Hey hey, I wanna ride the ferris wheel next!
[We enter the ferris wheel]
Kama: (sticking her face to the window) Whoa, so tall! Look how far I can see!
Fujimaru: Having fun?
Kama: A lot! Thanks for bringing me here, dad! Are YOU having fun, dad…? That’s the entire point here.
Fujimaru: I’m having a lot of fun.
Kama: Ehehehe, that’s what I like to hear. But… you know? I feel like this is not thrilling enough. The wheel is so slow and quiet, you get what I mean…? No, that’s not it… I’m not saying I want to go the ghost house. As expected, we need one extra scene before we leave the ferris wheel… Oh, right, the only scene I prepared is the same kind as the previous one. I’m going with this because it’s the only desire I could read from you, so don’t go calling me an one-trick pony, alright?
[We hear an announcement from below]
Terrorist A: Yeehaw, sorry for one more intrusion, we’re evil terrorists!
Terrorist B: We put bombs on this amusement park! We’ll blow it all up if anyone escapes or if any ride stops!
Kama: O-oh no! We gotta do something! Dad, you’re the only first class former military scientist specialized in explosives who happens to be at this park during the attack…
-------------------------------------------
Fujimaru: Ok, I understood my backstory this time. / I knew it… All along I was…
Kama: F-forget all this backstory talk. Just go with the flow.
-------------------------------------------
Fujimaru: Ok, I understood my backstory this time. / I knew it… All along I was…
-------------------------------------------
Kama: By the way, I was once kidnapped by an evil organization because I’m a kid genius with amazing psychic powers, but dad came to save me all alone. I can help you in your fights. I decided to never use my powers again, but… I don’t to lose the amusement park! Let’s have a fun time beating the bad guys together, and enjoy as you defuse the bombs, dad!
[Battle against 6 terrorists. You must have Kama on the first row. When the battle starts, Genius Psychic Girl activates, giving Kama the same buffs as the first fight. Every time a terrorist dies, they activate either “BUT OUR PLAN WAS PEEEERFECT…!?” or “Uwaaaaaaah!!”, giving a permanent attack and defense debuff to all other terrorists, including the ones on the backrow.]
(We were unharmed in our battle against the terrorists and disarmed the bombs. The amusement park is in peace again…)
Fujimaru: The fireworks parade is so pretty. / My jaw dropped. I could watch this forever.
Kama: Yeah… Me too. It’s easy to see how this production was very meticulously calculated to amuse an audience. It forces you to feel the bulk and history of humanity’s centuries long entertainment culture. You’ve seen all of this since it’s all reproduced from your deep psyche, but it all feels kinda new to me. No, I’m probably just being too influenced by the circumstances here. I’m now a child… and children express their impressions honestly. And get lost in thought. That’s why this is happening.
Fujimaru: Gods were never children…?
Kama: You’re asking if I have a child self… not counting this form that I have as a means to providing love? Yes, but it’s the same case as what I talked about before. I know it only as objective information. Pradyumna. My reincarnation as a child of Krishna and Rukmini. The one who re-encountered Rati, who reincarnated the same time as he did, and slayed the asura Shambara… Ah, but he’s the me I know the least. I’m the me who was burned by Shiva’s flames. This makes me bound to something. This eternal pain that turns me to ash is the key difference that separates me from Pradyumna. So I… … What am I talking about? Did this firework show contain a magecraft effect that made my mouth looser? I wouldn’t be surprised, with how pretty they are. Can’t say I regret it. Anyways, I hope you understood that that me has nothing to do with the current me. Remember that guy who's just as connected to Vishnu as Krishna? Rama, was it? I don’t have any opinions about him, negative or otherwise. I don’t want to get involved with him because he’s part of the same system as Shiva, and that’s pretty much all I think about him. Not to mention trying to interfere with that couple’s love is way more effort than it’s worth… It’s, in essence, trying to interfere with the connection between Vishnu and Lakshmi. Oh, hell no, hell no… Anyways! We already seen the parade, so we’re done here. Next! You’re already wanting the next setup, aren’t you? I’ll flip the page already!
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[Third arrow opens on a spring mountain with second Ascension Kama]
Kama: Come, boss! The cherry blossoms are in full bloom, come closer to watch them. I feel really grateful to have you as my manager. I didn’t know anything when I applied for this job, but you were so kind to teach me how to work from the first step… [Kama pours a cup of alcohol] For you, boss! Bottoms up!
[On the jungle with second Ascension Kama]
Kama: We’ll definitely return home alive, the two of us. Like hell I’m going to let us die in the belly of a giant anaconda…! You tricked it into swallowing dynamite? Nice one! I’ll ignite for you. I just have to shoot inside its mouth…! Come here, come here… Now go to hell! #[email protected]&%*! (bleep censor) [Explosion]
[In a spaceship dogfight with second Ascension Kama]
Kama: Hh… This is bad. I’ll try doing a Super Lightspeed Subspace Multidimension Warp Sailing as we dive into that asteroid belt! It’s dangerous… but it’s the only thing we can do now. Will you trust me, partner…? Really? Thanks. Pray to anything, even to that canned meat if you need to, that we don’t warp into space debris! Here I go! [We warp]
[In a camp, still with second Ascension]
(When I came to my senses, I was laying down next to the campfire, with my head sitting on her thighs. It’s so comfortable. I’m falling asleep…)
Kama: Are you enjoying it…? Are you pleased from the bottom of your heart?
Fujimaru: Yeah. / I’m really loving it… Yawn…
Kama: Huhu. I’m my attempt to let you savor all kinds of setups, I may have rushed the plots on the second half. But we still have a lot more to go over. I still have a lot more I can provide. My love is unlimited. I can spoil you rotten in any way you want…
[Fujimaru starts falling asleep]
Fujimaru: (The hand stroking my hair feels so gentle) / (It really makes it hard to keep my eyelids open…)
Kama: Are you getting sleepy? Yes, yes, it’s fine. Be my guest. Time and space mean nothing when you slumber inside me. The cradle of corruption you’re in lasts forever… Oh… But really, when you’re like this, it feels like I’m the parent and you’re the child. Entrust your life and your future to me, never questioning the idea that you’re being loved, no matter how baseless and illogical it may be, and fall into a slumber you don’t know when you’ll ever wake up from. Oh, how defenseless you are.
[Fujimaru falls asleep completely]
Fujimaru: Zzz… zzz…
Kama: Ah… Ah, I can’t handle this, I absolutely can’t. You’re way too to defenseless for me to contain myself. I’ll have a relapse here.
[She switches to third Ascension]
Kama: Bonnou Muryou Seigandan. I vow to end the anxiety and hate beyond measure. Once I burn all your worries… you'll be able find relief, in the truest meaning of the word, in the root of yourself, won’t you…?
[She slowly approaches until an alarm rings]
Kama: Huh?! What’s going on here? I didn’t hear anything about this!
Type 1 Key Provision Reaction detected. Requesting activation of the Emergency Defense System.
Kama: Hmph… You set a system like this on the Master instead of on me? You always know the right way to annoy me, goddess. An anti-virus software that reacts very specifically to when I try to do this.
Fujimaru: Eh, what’s happening?! / A fire? An enemy attack?
Kama: No idea. All I know for sure is that I’ll really hate whatever is going to happen. Ruining my mood is that woman’s forte. Consciously or unconsciously.
Preparations, trini, dve, ekam… Ohn Namah Shivaya
[The defense system summons Xiang Yu and Yu Mei-ren]
Yu Mei-ren: Huh? What’s this? I’m not complaining since me and Xiang Yu were summoned to together, but what were we called for?
Xiang Yu: Starting processing… Concluded. Remain calm. We are not the true selves. We are akin to visions granted a role.
[The defense system summons Sigurd and Brynhild]
Brynhild: Oh my. Where are we…?
Sigurd: I can estimate my role is the same regardless of where we are. Most likely to fight.
[The defense system summons bear Orion and Artemis]
Artemis: It’s your friendly neighborhood goddess! I personally volunteered this split body for this program! Anywhere I go with my darling is a date, not to mention we’re getting summoned as a pair for a very lovely reason.
Orion: Oh crap, I feel like I got myself into real trouble again…
Kama: Yeah, ok, I already get what this program is! A real eyesore! This is my field, a field of the love attribute, so you hit me with an offensive program of people with affinity to said attribute, is that it? There’s no worth in shooting my arrows on them! I already feel like I’ll pop a blood vessel just from looking at them!
Yu Mei-ren: I’m not sure what we’re doing here… What are your commands, Xiang Yu?
Xiang Yu: We must be here due to our functions being requested. As such, we will inevitably see our work. I shall not force you anything you are indisposed to.
Yu Mei-ren: No, no! I shall stay by your side, wherever you go…
Sigurd: I’m on a similar case. In fact, I decided to never miss a chance to act cool in front of my love.
Brynhild: Gee, Sigurd…
Artemis: Oh, you’re a love god? No wonder you smelled so similar to Aphrodite and Eros. Your kind tends to be an nuisance even when you’re just doing your assigned role, you know? I mean, going by the thing you handle, you’re specced just for this. Sucks to be you.
Orion: Pretty much all of you are nuisances, not just Aphrodite.
Artemis: Anyways, as the representative of all the lovey-dovey couples summoned here today, I'm stoked for this job~!
Orion: I’m the same character type as Xiang Yu and Sigurd…? Fine, ok, but I wanted to live more freely and…
Artemis: Darling, you think now is the time to complain? You believe this world has any place you can escape me.?
Orion: Prolly… not! (for both questions)
Kama: Ah, how annoying. Way to ruin the first time I felt motivated in a long time. The worst part is easily how everything is running exactly as that goddess thought it would. I can’t stand this. You’re not making me run away without a fight. You get what I’m saying? I’m GOING WILD! What are you waiting for? Give your resources!
Fujimaru: I’ll consider this a mock battle… / Don’t get hurt, guys…
[Battle. Wave 1 is Xiang Yu and Yu Mei-ren. Wave 2 is Sigurd and Brynhild. Wave 3 is Orion. You must have Kama on the first row. When the battle starts, “I’m GOING WILD” activates, giving Kama the same buffs from the previous two battles and making her generate stars every time she kills an enemy. At the start of the first wave, Xiang Yu activates A display of eternal love, giving a 3-turn defense debuff to our party. At the start of the second wave, Sigurd activates A display of bloody love, giving a 3-turn attack debuff to our party. At the start of the third wave, Orion activates A display of love between man and god, giving a 3-turn star gen debuff to to our party.]
Kama: Screw you! Stopping showing off! My heart starts palpitating and it makes me furious! Are you picking a fight with the god of love? Don’t even try to pretend you aren’t, I know you were added to the program just for this!
Voice echoing from somewhere: Y-you’re making me sound bad… That’s not it, I never had any ill intent. Who else could I use as an effective stopper to your rampages? I had no intention to pester you, I just figured that these people would be the only ones able to stay true to themselves enough to intervene under the rules of the love-filled world you built inside Master… Sorry.
Fujimaru: (I’ve heard this voice before) / (I know, it’s Par)
[Kama returns to second Ascension]
Kama: Shut up already. I get it, stop. I know I can’t pull any further pranks with you spying on us. Playtime is over. I don’t know if you’ll remember all this when you wake up, but I’m not taking any criticism about the events that happened here. Good bye.
Fujimaru: Ah, wait. / If this is really the end, I have something I need to say…
[Fujimaru wakes up in their room]
da Vinci: Hey, look who woke up.
Mash: Master, how are you feeling?
Fujimaru: Good morning. Not bad, actually. / A lot better than I was before.
Parvati: I figured you would. I had to stop her before she overdid it, but some more inference wouldn’t hurt. Oh, sorry, Master. You’re surprised by my presence here, right? Erm, have you understood the whole situation…?
da Vinci: I don’t know. You could say we only got to this situation because they never realized what was going on. Let the explain. It all starts with... your stress levels.
Mash: Honestly, you were on the brink of passing out from stress! Since you couldn’t keep your nervousness and sense of responsibility off your mind for a moment, both your physical and mental health were reaching a danger zone. Upon learning that, we swiftly started building a program that could allow you to rest, but…
da Vinci: We wanted your rest to feel as natural as possible. We can’t get you dependent on machines. But just when we were about to tell you everything, you lost consciousness on your own.
Parvati: Do you understand why…?
Fujimaru: Yes, I do. / That’s why I have somewhere I need to go now.
Parvati: Okay. Go ahead. Good luck out there.
[Fujimaru enters Kama’s room]
Kama: Wheeeh. W-what are doing here?
Fujimaru: I still haven’t thanked you yet.
Kama: T-thank me? What do you mean by, err, no, emm… Ahem. Fine, I’ll ask. How much do you remember?
Fujimaru: It’s hard to say how much. / I remember pretty much all of it.
Kama: Whhaaaaaat? Wait, were you lucid? The whole time? “It all felt sorta like a dream, but I was lucid most of the time”, you say…? You, ah, but, you were indulging me in all those weird scenarios and…
Fujimaru: I assumed you were just playing make believe with me. / You thought I hadn’t figured things out from the start?
Kama: … I… see. I’ll remind you that granting love is my Authority, so don’t try to assume any deeper meaning in anything we did. What form of love it is, or how you interpret it, is really none of my concern, got it? You didn’t make me embarrassed in slightest. No, no. You had no effect on me whatsoever, understood? All I’m getting out of it is that feeling of wasted time when you think you’re drinking with a friend, but it turns out the friend was sober the whole time.
Fujimaru: It wasn’t wasted time. / Thank you. I feel a lot better now.
Kama: …
Fujimaru: You knew I was about to pass out from fatigue, so you / forced me to relieve my stress, wasn’t it?
Kama: Just because you breaking on me this soon would be upsetting… You’re like a toy to me. You should understand, since your Servant is a twisted love god who can’t do his job right. That’s such an eccentric pick that even I don’t know what to think of you as a Master. So, I think you don’t need to be anything more than a toy for me to play with random forms of love. And I don’t care what you think of me. Huhu, no, that’s not right. I should make you put all cards on the table. What do you think of me? Of this love god who shoots arrows of lust, taking people in and out of the uncertainty of love? Of this love god synonymous to temptation?
Fujimaru: A god who encourages me when I hesitate. / A god who gives me the courage to step forward.
Kama: Kh… You giving me such an innocent answer point-blank was so unexpected it’s giving brain damage… Can you quit with the unabashed integrity? You’re reminding me of Parvati a little.
Fujimaru: Uh… Sorry…?
Kama: (It makes sense… in hindsight. After all, this kid is a much Parvati’s Master as they’re mine. It would be weird for them not to have anything in common with her. No, that’s not all… Sigh. Took me forever, but I understand now. At least I feel like I do. They’re similar not only in their aura of virtue, but also in how big their presence feels to me. That must be why they’re so hard to get a good read on, and how they manage to upset so often. They’re someone I can’t ignore, someone I can never stop keeping track of even if I try, someone who is constantly invading my thoughts… And the reason why this Master, supposedly just a human, just a toy, has a presence as big as hers inside me is… Hmph. Perhaps because… she is a goddess connected to my basis as a god, and they is a human connected to my basis as this Servant. Ugh… do you understand? I’m a threat and my eyes are locked onto you. Can’t ignore or forget you. Just like my never-ending pain…)
Fujimaru: What’s wrong? / Are you okay? You’ve been making all kinds of faces without saying a word.
Kama: It’s nothing…! You’re the one with a problem here. I’m upset with your carelessness. I hope you learned your lesson! Never let your stress accumulate beyond your limits again! You never know when a simma like me will show up to take advantage of your moment of weakness! Ah… you thought that was a warning? No, that was just a threat. You won’t have Parvati’s fortifications in you forever. Keep tiring yourself like that and you’ll be too weak to resist a truly dangerous temptation next time. I mean it. Yes, you seriously could be swallowed by my unlimited love. Be prepared. A troublesome god like me can indeed encourage you to take a step forward, my carefree Master with no sense of danger… but that’s a step down a precipice of corruption you can never climb back from. Don’t forget I’m always watching… Always.
submitted by ComunCoutinho to grandorder [link] [comments]


2020.09.15 23:51 Wrainbash 10.19 META Compsheet

10.19 META Compsheet
Last updated: 23.09.2020
Greetings Tacticians :)
I have compiled a list of meta comps based on as many challenger recommendations. They are roughly sorted by strength and updated frequently.
Google Sheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1eEoQuc6X2HtPr3ZuT23rWhTrtU_y0mPGps8elzZzWK4
Webview: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/[...]/pubhtml (sometimes there is too much traffic on the spreadsheet)
Below are some standard leveling/rolling patterns:
  1. Standard: [email protected]2-1/2-2/2-3 [email protected]2-5/2-7/3-1 [email protected]3-1/3-2/--- [email protected]3-5/4-1/--- [email protected]4-5/5-1/5-3
  2. Slowroll: Don't buy experience, stay at L5/L6/L7, econ to 50G & only roll interest above 50G. Eventually you wanna roll more aggressively for 3-stars and start leveling again. Optional: Roll to 30G in 3-1.
Sponsored by Blitz.gg: Get these comps inside your game with the Blitz.gg overlay!
Good luck and lotsa fun in the new Set guys! :)
submitted by Wrainbash to CompetitiveTFT [link] [comments]


2020.09.15 23:26 Eventvods ESL Pro League S12 - Europe: Group Stage

If you can read this, you have our stylesheet disabled. If you do not wish to be spoiled, please re-enable our stylesheet, as we have spoiler-specific rules in our stylesheet. Thanks!

Regular Season, Day 1, Tuesday - September 1st

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
A1 Nuke NaVi vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
A2 Dust 2 NaVi vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
A3 Train NaVi vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
B1 Inferno G2 vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV
B2 Train G2 vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV
B3 Mirage G2 vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
C1 Vertigo BIG vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
C2 Dust 2 BIG vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
C3 Mirage BIG vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 2, Wednesday - September 2nd

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
D1 Train Heroic vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
D2 Nuke Heroic vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
D3 Inferno Heroic vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
E1 Mirage VIT vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
E2 Dust 2 VIT vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
E3 Inferno VIT vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
F1 Nuke FaZe vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
F2 Inferno FaZe vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
F3 Mirage FaZe vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 3, Thursday - September 3rd

  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
G1 Dust 2 FNC vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
G2 Inferno FNC vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
G3 Train FNC vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
H1 Train COL vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV
H2 Dust 2 COL vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV
H3 Nuke COL vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
I1 Nuke G2 vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
I2 Vertigo G2 vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
I3 Inferno G2 vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 4, Friday - September 4th

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
J1 Train NaVi vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
J2 Dust 2 NaVi vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
J3 Nuke NaVi vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
K1 Inferno BIG vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV
K2 Dust 2 BIG vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV
K3 Nuke BIG vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
L1 Vertigo Heroic vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
L2 Nuke Heroic vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
L3 Mirage Heroic vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 5, Saturday - September 5th

  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
M1 Dust 2 FNC vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
M2 Inferno FNC vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
M3 Train FNC vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
N1 Train COL vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
N2 Nuke COL vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
N3 Mirage COL vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
O1 Nuke FaZe vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV
O2 Train FaZe vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV
O3 Inferno FaZe vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 6, Sunday - September 6th

  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
P1 Mirage VIT vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
P2 Inferno VIT vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
P3 Dust 2 VIT vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
Q1 Dust 2 BIG vs NaVi Twitch YouTube HLTV
Q2 Nuke BIG vs NaVi Twitch YouTube HLTV
Q3 Inferno BIG vs NaVi Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
R1 Train OG vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
R2 Inferno OG vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
R3 Dust 2 OG vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 7, Tuesday - September 8th

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
S1 Mirage ENCE vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
S2 Nuke ENCE vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
S3 Inferno ENCE vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
T1 Train G2 vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV
T2 Vertigo G2 vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV
T3 Inferno G2 vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
U1 Inferno FaZe vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV
U2 Nuke FaZe vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV
U3 Mirage FaZe vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 8, Wednesday - September 9th

  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
V1 Overpass COL vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
V2 Nuke COL vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
V3 Mirage COL vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
W1 Nuke NiP vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
W2 Mirage NiP vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
W3 Train NiP vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
X1 Nuke VIT vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV
X2 Vertigo VIT vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV
X3 Dust 2 VIT vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 9, Thursday - September 10th

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
Y1 Mirage NaVi vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
Y2 Nuke NaVi vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
Y3 Train NaVi vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
Z1 Mirage BIG vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV
Z2 Overpass BIG vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV
Z3 Nuke BIG vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AA1 Train G2 vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
AA2 Dust 2 G2 vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
AA3 Mirage G2 vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 10, Friday - September 11th

  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AB1 Nuke NiP vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
AB2 Mirage NiP vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
AB3 Overpass NiP vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AC1 Mirage COL vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV
AC2 Nuke COL vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV
AC3 Vertigo COL vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AD1 Dust 2 AST vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
AD2 Nuke AST vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
AD3 Inferno AST vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 11, Saturday - September 12th

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AE1 Nuke OG vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
AE2 Inferno OG vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
AE3 Train OG vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AF1 Vertigo BIG vs G2 Twitch YouTube HLTV
AF2 Dust 2 BIG vs G2 Twitch YouTube HLTV
AF3 Nuke BIG vs G2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AG1 Dust 2 VIT vs FaZe Twitch YouTube HLTV
AG2 Overpass VIT vs FaZe Twitch YouTube HLTV
AG3 Nuke VIT vs FaZe Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 12, Sunday - September 13th

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AH1 Nuke Heroic vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
AH2 Train Heroic vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
AH3 Overpass Heroic vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AI1 Train NaVi vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV
AI2 Overpass NaVi vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV
AI3 Nuke NaVi vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AJ1 Mirage ENCE vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
AJ2 Train ENCE vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
AJ3 Dust 2 ENCE vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 13, Tuesday - September 15th

  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AK1 Nuke FaZe vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
AK2 Dust 2 FaZe vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
AK3 Mirage FaZe vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AL1 Inferno VIT vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV
AL2 Dust 2 VIT vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV
AL3 Overpass VIT vs FNC Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AM1 Dust 2 AST vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
AM2 Train AST vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
AM3 Inferno AST vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 14, Wednesday - September 16th

  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AN1 Nuke COL vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
AN2 Mirage COL vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
AN3 Dust 2 COL vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AO1 Dust 2 OG vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
AO2 Inferno OG vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
AO3 Mirage OG vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AP1 Vertigo BIG vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
AP2 Mirage BIG vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV
AP3 Nuke BIG vs GOD Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 15, Thursday - September 17th

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AQ1 Inferno G2 vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
AQ2 Nuke G2 vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
AQ3 Vertigo G2 vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AR1 Overpass NaVi vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV
AR2 Nuke NaVi vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV
AR3 Train NaVi vs Heroic Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AS1 Nuke VIT vs COL Twitch YouTube HLTV
AS2 Vertigo VIT vs COL Twitch YouTube HLTV
AS3 Dust 2 VIT vs COL Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 16, Friday - September 18th

  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AT1 Inferno TS vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
AT2 Mirage TS vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
AT3 Nuke TS vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AU1 Mirage FaZe vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
AU2 Nuke FaZe vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
AU3 Inferno FaZe vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AV1 Nuke FNC vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV
AV2 Inferno FNC vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV
AV3 Train FNC vs AST Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!

Regular Season, Day 17, Saturday - September 19th

  • Group A
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
AW1 Train G2 vs NaVi Twitch YouTube HLTV
AW2 Inferno G2 vs NaVi Twitch YouTube HLTV
AW3 Dust 2 G2 vs NaVi Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AX1 Inferno Heroic vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV
AX2 Nuke Heroic vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV
AX3 Mirage Heroic vs OG Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AY1 Dust 2 BIG vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
AY2 Nuke BIG vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV
AY3 Inferno BIG vs ENCE Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
AZ1 Vertigo GOD vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
AZ2 Nuke GOD vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV
AZ3 Inferno GOD vs AGO Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
  • Group B
# Map Team 1 vs. Team 2 Twitch YouTube HLTV Discussion
BA1 Nuke VIT vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
BA2 Vertigo VIT vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV
BA3 Dust 2 VIT vs mouz Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
BB1 Mirage COL vs FaZe Twitch YouTube HLTV
BB2 Nuke COL vs FaZe Twitch YouTube HLTV
BB3 Dust 2 COL vs FaZe Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
BC1 Nuke FNC vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
BC2 Inferno FNC vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV
BC3 Train FNC vs NiP Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
BD1 Overpass AST vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
BD2 Nuke AST vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV
BD3 Inferno AST vs TS Twitch YouTube HLTV Spoilers!
submitted by Eventvods to CSeventVODs [link] [comments]


2020.09.15 23:19 darrenphughes 2020 NorCal(PG&E) installation timeline. Redding, CA.

I ordered the large(11.34kW) Tesla solar system with two Powerwalls. I went into this with my eyes open, due in part to this sub-reddit that dealing with Tesla would be frustrating so that helped me get through the process. It was worth it in the end as Tesla was approx $10,000 less than the nearest competitor.
Since my new home that I moved into into in March was a rebuild of a home that was lost to the Carr Fire in 2018, it took 4 different attempts to get Tesla to use my new roof plans for the remote assessment instead of their usual out of date satellite images. They repeatedly sent me plans to approve that were based on the old house that was at my address. That was frustrating. There were other delays that could have been avoided but I kept calling Tesla and they would fix the issues eventually. Below is the timeline from date of order order to turning the system on.
4/8/20 Ordered Tesla Large Solar system and 2 Powerwalls.
4/21/20 Received request to approve a system layout based on wrong roof plan.
4/21/20 Approved for Tesla(Mosaic) solar loan.
5/11/20 Site inspection. Explained to inspector that I still hadn’t approved a system layout due to out of date satellite imagery being used by Tesla.
5/13/20 After multiple phone calls and repeated wrong roof layouts sent to me, Tesla finally use the actual builder’s roof plans that I provided at the start to create a layout that I immediately approved via electronic signature.
6/11/20 Received email to schedule my installation. Took the soonest date which was July 8.
6/22/20 Contacted Tesla regarding the new pricing they had announced the day before to see if I could avail of the new pricing and the larger 340W panels(12.24kW system). They advised me that I would get a rebate for the difference in price after installation and sent me a letter saying so. I was not able to get the larger system without significant delays due to my permit approval being for the 315W panels.
7/8/20 System installed in one day. Im not a builder or roofer and I haven’t been up on the roof since but I’m very happy with the work they did.
7/20/20 Shasta county inspector arrives for inspection at 9:30am. Tesla person who was to walk him through the installation didn’t leave Sacramento until 9:00am so they missed each their. Inspection rescheduled for eight days later.
7/28/20 Shasta county inspects system with Tesla employee present. No issues.
7/29/20 Received notice my system had officially passed inspection.
8/5/20 Contacted PG&E to get an idea of when they would give approval to turn my system on. They told me they hadn’t received a solar application for my address. That application should have been submitted at the beginning of the planning process according to PG&E. I immediately contacted Tesla and they submitted the application same day.
8/14/20 Receive approval for use from PG&E. Turn on my system and everything was awesome. Actually had a 2.5 hour power outage the following day and the Powerwalls performed flawlessly. Largest day of production over the first few days was 60kWh, then the wildfire smoke came. I’m averaging 42.6kWh/day in the first 31 days of production. I’ve seen as little as 10.1kWh on a bad day due to the smoke.
submitted by darrenphughes to TeslaSolar [link] [comments]


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