wip; im just doodling bc im tryna figure out his actual design lmao,
a lil update is that his crack is now at the side instead of infront bc i thought that made more sense he'd try to hide it
also how tf do i draw bows in this position help
wip; im just doodling bc im tryna figure out his actual design lmao,
a lil update is that his crack is now at the side instead of infront bc i thought that made more sense he'd try to hide it
also how tf do i draw bows in this position help
also. not important but i feel like we were happy should actually be a debut vault track
I showed my mother the first chapter of my story and she started crying. I don't know if she's crying because it's so beautiful that it brought tears to her eyes or if it's so terrible that it caused her actual pain.
Thanks for all the prompts lads! I'm gonna start writing now!
i just found the notebooks i used to hand-write self insert harry potter and aphmau fanfiction in and now i want to crawl into the sea and never return
Diversity wins!! The racist republican blind to his yt privilege is gay
so my study abroad semester has been solidified, some details r still murky but im working on the financial aspect of it. i will be in Barcelona, Spain from beginning of January to beginning of April! Honest to god I do not know what this may mean for me art wise but we’ll see 😭
Me: I have a coding assignment due tomorrow that I need to do
Brain: start a new tvd fic
It came as no surprise that they ended up at the Security Republic headquarters rather than a police station.
Upon arrival, the security workers removed the group from the vans and led them into the building. It was pitch black outside, and Olivia felt as though she’d lost all sense of time. Was it late? Or was it early in the morning? No one seemed to have any idea.
The workers led them, single file, down a stairwell and into a storage room. It was crushingly crowded, freezing, and devoid of windows. It might as well have been a dungeon.
“Stay here,” a guard commanded. “We will come back for you once Sage is in commission.”
The door slammed shut.
Everyone stood in the dark room, the only source of light being a failing fluorescent bulb up ahead.
“This is my fault.” Helen admitted after a moment, her voice low.
“No…no…” Miss Pauling tried to reassure her. “It’s not your fault! We just…”
“Miss Pauling,” Helen began, silencing her. “This is my fault. I was…behaving immaturely. I drove off, and if you hadn’t had to come looking for me, none of this would have happened. This is my fault, let me take responsibility for this.”
The room went quiet again.
“How do you plan to take responsibility?” Medic inquired. “Does taking responsibility look like removing all of these handcuffs?”
“No—” Helen grit her teeth, staring at the concrete floor as she tried to think of a solution. “Let me think…”
Olivia tugged at her handcuffs for what felt like the thousandth time. “What’s gonna happen to us?” she asked, nervous.
"Nothing we can't handle," Engineer said confidently, despite the fact that it was clear he hadn't considered any solutions.
Zhanna examined the cuffs on her wrists, paying special attention to how the cuff looped around her handless stump. “Have only one hand. And somehow, handcuffs on me…”
“What a strange mystery…” Soldier frowned, staring at the cuffs.
Helen noticed this interaction, and she suddenly had an idea, gesturing at Zhanna. “You—try pulling on the cuffs; since you have no hand there, it should pull off with enough pressure,”
Zhanna thought this over, before she set to work tugging, wincing in discomfort. Heavy watched her, a little nervous.
“Sister,” he nudged her to stop her. “You will get hurt.”
Demoman hummed in thought. “Y’know—if you had something like butter, something to make your skin all slippery, you could slip your wrist right out of that.”
Sniper snapped his fingers in realization. “Spit on it!”
“I’ll spit!” Soldier offered, stepping right up and bending down to look at Zhanna’s cuffed wrist.
Scout recoiled in disgust. “Yuck!”
“Please don’t,” Spy begged in response, disgusted by the idea as well.
“Let him do it!” Engineer urged. “If it’ll help get us free, let him do it,”
Zhanna nodded in agreement, offering her wrist to Soldier. “Spit on me, my love!”
“How charming,” Lar-Nah remarked, trying not to watch.
Just as Soldier began to try and slick Zhanna’s wrist, the lock to the door clicked. One of the guards appeared in the doorway, his demeanor stoic.
He gestured to Olivia. “Come with me. Sage wants to see you.”
Before Olivia could even speak, Helen darted in front of her, leering at the guard with a fierce glare. “Don’t you dare!”
Soldier puffed up his chest as much as possible and confronted the guard as well. “Step away from this child right now or I will break your face into an unrecognizable clump!”
“Aye!” Demoman agreed, stepping in front of Olivia as well. “Whatever you got to say to the lass, you can say to all of us!”
The other mercenaries gathered around Olivia, forming a protective circle around her. Zhanna paused her escape attempt to step in front of the girl, and even Lar-Nah made an uneasy amount of eye contact with the guard as she came to stand beside her.
“You have no idea who you're up against,” Miss Pauling took a step forward, approaching the guard and looking him in the eyes. “You can talk to any one of us, just tell your boss to leave her alone!”
Olivia's fear and confusion parted to make way for the overwhelming comfort she felt as she stood within the circle. She was loved, here, and she had a family to protect her. It truly sunk in, now, and this new feeling was one she never wanted to let go of for as long as she lived.
The guard just stood there, staring at the group with a blank expression on his face. “Nothing’s going to happen to her,” he said finally. “Sage just wants to talk. That’s it.”
Helen glared daggers at him. “Tell Sage I am open to speaking with him. But we will not hand over this child.”
“Oh, boy,” the guard sighed, reaching for a communication device on his belt. “I was afraid it would come to this…” he pressed a button on the device and spoke into it, “I need backup down here!”
All of the sudden, Zhanna began to furiously tug on her cuffs. The guard spotted her, but before he could do anything, her wrist slipped out, freeing her.
“Hey!” the guard yelled out, making a mad dash for Zhanna to try and subdue her. Zhanna punched him in the face, knocking him across the room and causing him to skid on the concrete floor.
As backup guards rushed into the room, Zhanna had already freed Soldier, who leapt forward and launched an attack on the first few guards who were unlucky enough to enter. Zhanna began frantically freeing Heavy, who in turn freed Medic and Demoman, and soon Helen yanked Olivia's wrists towards her and undid her cuffs in what felt like seconds.
Once Olivia was freed, Helen pushed her directly into Miss Pauling’s arms. “Go!” she shouted at her. “Go, take Olivia far away from here!”
“What about you!?” Pauling asked, breathless.
“I’ll be fine,” Helen made a gesture with her hand, taking a moment to smooth her hand over Olivia’s hair. “Just…take care of my daughter!”
“Mommy—” Olivia began to say, but Pauling had already turned and dashed out past the guards.
With Olivia tucked under her arm, Pauling desperately searched for an exit. She headed for the stairwell in which they came from, hoping to find the way they came in, but it was no use.
Another group of guards swarmed them in an instant, and despite Pauling's attempts to fight back, they pinned her down and violently ripped Olivia from her arms.
Olivia screamed in fear, scratching and biting as she was accustomed to doing in fights, but the guards did not react and simply dragged her down the hallway to the elevator.
Her heart pounded like mad, and she struggled to get out of the man’s grip, looking behind only to see Pauling getting handcuffed.
Olivia felt herself trembling, watching the elevator doors shut. She had no idea what was about to happen, yet she recalled the moment she stabbed that other man in the eye…she knew she could fend for herself.
Heavy heard Pauling screaming, and he ran up the stairs to where he saw her struggling with the guards. In an instant, he grabbed the men who were attacking her and smashed them onto the hard floors with his bare fists.
“Miss Pauling,” he reached for her, helping her up.
Miss Pauling shook herself out of her terror, grabbing Heavy by his shirt desperately. “They got Olivia! I-I tried to get her back, but they took her into the elevator!”
Helen arrived on the scene as Pauling was explaining what had happened, wiping blood from under her nails with a tissue. When she heard what had happened to Olivia, she gritted her teeth in a mix of rage and anguish.
“Those bastards…” she hissed under her breath.
“I’m sorry…” Pauling looked at her feet, ashamed. “I didn’t protect her…”
“You did what you could,” Helen assured her, placing a hand on Pauling’s shoulders. “Although we need to find her as soon as possible. I have no idea what Sage is planning, but I can guarantee that its not good at all.”
“Hey!” Engineer called out, running up the stairs to talk to Helen. “This place has cameras everywhere, Sage is gonna see we got out and killed those guards and he’s gonna send out more—what do we do?”
Helen took a step back, pressing her eyes shut while desperately trying to think of a solution. Finally, she decided, “We need to find the control room for the cameras. There's a room somewhere in this building that shows all of the viewpoints from each camera, and it's in there that you can turn them all off.” Her mind flashed back to her little girl, and her heart ached as she added, “By finding it, though, we can also find out where Sage is keeping Olivia!”
Engineer nodded. “Will do! I’ll try to find that, ma’am—I’m sure it can’t be far!”
“Thank you,” Helen then turned to Miss Pauling. “Which elevator did that brute take Olivia into?”
Miss Pauling gestured to the elevator in question. “That one! Didn’t see which floor he selected, though,”
“All right,” Helen grabbed her hand, and the two ran to the elevator. “Come with me!”
At the same time, the guards carried Olivia to Sage’s office. They knocked once on the door, and when Sage confirmed that they could enter, they stepped in and set Olivia down.
“Thank you,” Sage waved dismissively at the guards. “You may leave, I would like to talk to the girl privately.”
The guards nodded, stepping outside. Just like that, Olivia was alone with Phoenix Sage.
Sage’s gunshot wound had clearly been bandaged, and his arm was in a sling. He locked eyes with Olivia, and he stood up slowly. “Hello, Miss Mann,” he greeted, his tone gentle. “I can see you’re awfully scared…there’s no reason to be,”
“I’m—I’m not scared,” Olivia stuck her chin out, clenching her fists.
Sage approached, looking her up and down. "You bear a strong resemblance to your father. In a good way, of course," he said, reaching for a pitcher of lemonade on a nearby table that Olivia hadn't noticed when she first walked in. He poured a glass, handing it to her. “You know, I’ve spent the last several hours researching your father.”
Olivia grasped the lemonade in her hands, but she didn’t drink it. Her father had once warned her about accepting drinks from an enemy. “Why?”
“I wanted to learn more,” Sage replied. “You see, I did know your father, as I met him once. But I did not know him well…” he began to pace around the room, though he was rather slow in his manner. “I also researched you. I learned from outside sources about how he raised you, how he trained you from birth to fill his shoes. And do you know what I realized?”
Olivia didn’t answer, her hands still gripping the glass. The condensation made her hands cold and wet, but she didn’t care.
Sage stopped his pacing, looking her dead in the eyes. “We’re very alike, you and I,” a smile spread across his face, one that was unpleasant and rubbery. “See, my own father raised me in a very similar manner: everything in my childhood revolved around this job. Everything I learned was to get me to where I am today.”
“Oh…” Olivia murmured, blinking. He’d grown up like she had, up until her father’s death…
“My father…” Sage continued, looking into the distance wistfully. “What a man he was. A dreamer, even at the end. Do you know what he wanted to create? One company, one resource that would provide everything people needed in life. When he saw how greatly security cameras could affect one’s life, he got the idea of building whole cities run by companies. Security Republic, I learned, had the potential to be so much more…but that could only happen through negotiation,”
Negotiation. Olivia had heard her father use that word before, too.
Sage sat down at the desk again, beckoning Olivia to sit as well. She timidly climbed into the armchair and sat across the desk from him, their eyes meeting once more. Sage went on.
“He wanted Mann Co. to join forces with us, but oh, they refused.” Sage shook his head sadly. “The Mann brothers – your uncles – they couldn’t see the potential we could. Even when my father married your mother, they turned up their noses and refused to see the light!”
Olivia’s brow furrowed. “Wait—my…?”
“You didn’t know that?” Sage smiled, amused. “That Helen is your mother?”
“I knew that,” Olivia let him know. “But…your dad…”
“Oh – that.” Sage snorted. “Yes, our parents were married. How funny…if the cards had been played right, we could have been siblings, you and I.”
Olivia wrinkled her nose. She couldn’t even picture that.
Sage took a long breath. “Anyway…your father has come and gone. And your mother…did she even raise you?”
“No…” Olivia admitted, looking away.
“Exactly what I thought,” he clicked his tongue in disapproval. “All she ever cared about is that damn Australium. She couldn’t see the vision my father and I wanted her to, she couldn’t see the light. After his death, she violated his wishes and terminated our business relationship. She ignored his legacy…” Sage grit his teeth in anger. “I have never ignored my father’s wishes, or his legacy. Even if he’s dead, the best I can give him is to fulfill what he wanted!”
Sage then focused back on Olivia. “This is where you come in – now that your father has died, Mann Co. has been taken from your fingertips. You are your father’s legacy, yet that was stolen from you, you poor girl. But…” he smiled again, his smile still as fake as before. “I have a proposition for you,”
He reached into his desk, pulling out a contract, which he then laid in front of Olivia. “Join me,” he offered her. “Let me adopt you and make you the heiress of my estate! Then, when I snatch Mann Co. from Saxton Hale, you will have the rights to the company once more!” Sage leaned in closer to make sure she heard him. “You will fulfill your father’s legacy. You’ll make him proud.”
Olivia felt like she couldn’t speak. Sage just pushed the contract closer to her, along with a pen.
“Sign,” he urged. “And I’ll give you the keys to your destiny!”
Time seemed to stop. Olivia tried to read the contract, but her mind felt to muddled to focus on any of the words. She recalled the dream she'd had about her father, and how he seemed disappointed in her...she considered making him proud once more, and perhaps, in her dreams, he'd be happy this time. She'd get to hear him gush about how smart she was again, and the prospect of regaining her father's approval was enticing.
She couldn’t. That feeling of safety and protection she’d experienced with her family moments ago was all she longed for in that moment. She longed for the comfort of being safe with them again, for the joy she felt with them. Getting into mischief with Scout, drawing pictures with Pyro, reading with Heavy, playing capture the flag with Demo and Soldier, listening to jazz with Spy, learning new things from Medic and Engineer, and getting crossword puzzle help from Sniper...all of it carried a weight far greater than any 'destiny' she'd been repeatedly promised. All of those evenings she'd spent writing spreadsheets paled in contrast to Pauling's embrace or the time she'd spent outside with Zhanna that one afternoon. Even the comfortable silence she was coming to appreciate while in Lar-Nah’s presence felt normal to her. Her mother, too...they'd only recently begun to mend their connection, and despite their stormy history, there remained hope for a deeper love on the horizon.
Gray had wanted that future for her. He’d given her the childhood he hadn’t had, but at the same time, he molded her into what he desired her to be. In this moment, Olivia decided she didn’t want that anymore.
Sage’s face twitched. “…come again?”
"I told you no!" Olivia snapped, lifting herself to her feet and standing on the chair. “That’s not what I want! You can keep your stupid company, and you can keep your stupid money! Stop this and take me to my family, right now!”
“Sit down and speak in a civil tone!” Sage yelled back at her, his friendly façade washing away instantly.
Olivia grabbed the glass of lemonade and threw it right in his face. “No! Shut up!”
Sage yelped as he was doused in the sweet liquid. “Oh, you—you insolent brat! You’re just like your mother!” He then snatched Olivia up, trying to wrangle her arms behind her back. “The orphanage is going to love you!”
Olivia hissed like an animal, twisting her leg around to give him a firm kick to the abdomen, startling an ‘oof’ out of him. He dropped her to the ground, and she got right back up on her feet, fists poised and ready to fight.
Sage, on the other hand, was not the kind to gladly engage in combat with a child. Instead, he threw open his nearby cabinet, producing what appeared to be an old birdcage. He then picked up Olivia, and after a great deal of struggling, he stuffed her inside of the cage.
Olivia caught her breath, watching in alarm as Sage swiftly locked the cage door with a key. “Now, stay here!” he barked at her. “I’ll get someone to take care of that ‘family’ of yours! Unbelievable…”
As he stormed out, Olivia desperately rattled the cage and shouted after him, “No! You leave them alone! I hate you!” It was no use, though, and the door slammed shut.
Olivia tried to calm herself down, shaking in both rage and fear. She pressed her eyes shut, trying to think of a way out. She shifted position a little, feeling her bow brush the top of the cage, and it was then she had an idea: the pin in her bow.
Quickly, she pulled the bow out and set to work trying to remove the pin from it, hoping she could use it to pick the lock. Once she’d freed the little pin, she started bending it into shape, trying to remember how she’d seen this done before.
As she inserted the pin into the keyhole and began twisting it around, she knew she had to stop Sage from pursuing her family. She didn’t care if she was small, all she wanted to do was rip him to shreds and make him suffer for what he had done.
Finally, she undid the lock, feeling a rush of delight when the cage door swung open. She crawled out, running right for the office door and tugging on the handle. It opened, much to her delight, and she stumbled out into the hallway.
Right away, she felt herself freeze: what now? She didn't see anyone she recognized, and the corridor was completely vacant...everyone else must have been fighting the guards. Olivia took a deep breath and tried to recall which way the guards had taken her earlier.
It must have been the right, she realized, spotting the elevator at the end of the hall. She made a mad dash for the elevator but skidded to a stop when it made a sound and the doors opened.
Olivia stilled, waiting for another set of guards to appear, but that was not what happened. Instead, she came face to face with Miss Pauling and Helen, and instant relief swept through her.
“I got out and I told Sage to go away!” Olivia blurted out, holding her arms up in a plea to be picked up.
Olivia buried her face in her mother's hair, ignoring the smell of her hairspray. Miss Pauling also took a step forward, wrapping her arms around Helen and Olivia and hugging them.
After a moment, Helen asked Olivia, “Where is Sage now?”
Olivia lifted her head. “I dunno—he left me alone in his office and said he was gonna kill all of you!”
Miss Pauling broke the embrace, stepping away. “He only has so many guards, but I think the police got called or something! Once Engie disables those cameras, we can get out of here,”
Helen nodded. “Yes, true, but…I have to confront Sage again. I have to finish this.”
“Ma’am…” Miss Pauling looked all around. “But we don’t even know where he went!”
“I have a feeling I know where he might have ended up.” Helen replied, setting Olivia down carefully. “And I’m going to find him,”
Right at that moment, Scout came skidding up the stairs, panting. “Hey—the guys found the control room! Engineer said he saw…” he trailed off, seeing Olivia. “You got out!”
“Yeah!” Olivia rushed right to his side, grabbing his pant leg. “I escaped!”
“Good job!” Scout praised, scooping her up. “What now?”
Helen glanced back down the hallway, and then at Olivia in Scout’s arms. “Get her somewhere safe,” she advised. “I will be the one to deal with Sage…” with that, she turned down the hallway, disappearing down the corridor.
Olivia watched her go, feeling a heartache deep within but a mild sense of relief that, perhaps, freedom was on the horizon.
Miss Pauling grabbed Scout’s arm, directing him back into the elevator. “C’mon—let’s go!”
At the same time, Engineer had indeed broken into the control room. He was surprised it wasn't guarded, but he realized it had to be because those guards must have been the same ones Sage had sent to attack them.
Spy stepped into the room as Engineer knelt beside the room’s main panel. “What is it you’re searching for, laborer?”
“Some kinda off switch,” Engie grunted, standing back up. “There’s no way to shut these cameras off! Sage must have them recording constantly, but there has to be some way to disable them…”
Spy looked over his shoulder, studying the buttons. “Hmm…you’re right, I don’t see a switch for that. Perhaps he’s hidden it?”
It was then, though, that Spy’s ears picked up on the sound of breathing behind him. Before he could even register what had happened, he felt something cold and round press to the back of his head.
“If you’d like to keep your brains in your skulls, I’d suggest you step away from there,” a feminine voice snarled.
Spy turned around slowly, his eyes meeting those of Joann’s, Sage’s assistant. Joann held the gun with a firm grip, never tearing her eyes away from Spy and Engineer. Engineer started to speak, but Spy raised his hand, silencing him.
“I have this,” Spy assured him, turning back to Joann. “Now, now, I suggest you calm down, ma’am,”
“Don’t tell me to calm down!” Joann barked. “I have a job to do, now get away from there!”
“Ma’am…” Spy clicked his tongue. “Please, you’re threatening us with a gun over a man like Phoenix Sage? You’d be happy to waste bullets for a man like him?”
Joann’s face twitched. “I’m being paid.”
“True…true…” Spy shrugged. “But how much does he pay you? Is it anything close to what he makes on a daily basis? I’d imagine its not,”
There was a pause, and Joann lowered her gun. “Fuck…you’re right,” she sighed, defeated. “Just…what is it you’re looking for in here?”
Engineer cleared his throat. “W-well, we’re looking for the off-switch for these cameras, and we can’t find—”
Before he could finish, Joann opened up a cabinet and peeled back part of the interior cover, revealing a small switch. She pressed it, and in seconds, everything shut off.
As Engineer sat there, dumbfounded, Spy looked back up at Joann. “I…thank you?”
“I’m tired of working for that rich bastard,” Joann admitted. “He never listens to me, anyway…”
“I get that,” Engineer cleared his throat, standing up. “Where’s Sage, now?”
“No idea,” Joann shrugged. “Most of the employees are just leaving now that you guys have shown up—no one besides the guards wants to keep helping him out,”
Spy couldn’t help but laugh. “How interesting…”
A loud ‘boom’ echoed from down the hall, and Joann ran to the doorway to look. “Oh, my god!” she exclaimed, recoiling in shock. “Did someone just set off a bomb!?”
Spy ran to investigate, and sure enough, Demoman came running from the other side of the hall. “Took out some guards for ye!” he announced. “Scout and Pauling got Olivia, but Helen’s lookin’ for Sage!”
Spy sighed in relief. “Good…I’ll help get Olivia to safety. Where are the others?”
“I don’t know,” Demo confessed. “Lost sight of Sniper—I’ll go find him!”
“Do that,” Spy nodded, turning swiftly on his heel and running off to go look for Scout, Olivia, and Miss Pauling.
Pyro had found some oil in Sage’s personal kitchen, and said oil was then used to start a fire which engulfed a good portion of the meeting rooms. As most of the employees had fled, no one was inside, though the fire created a thick smog throughout the halls.
Lar-Nah stopped running, leaning against the wall and trying to catch her breath, though the smoke made that task rather difficult. As she tried to regulate her breathing, she heard fast footsteps approaching from behind, and she knew who it was right away: her son.
“What are you doing!?” Sniper exclaimed, grabbing her by the arm. “We need to get out of here!”
Pyro was close behind, and they noticed Lar-Nah coughing and began to gently pat her back.
“I’m fine,” Lar-Nah assured both of them. She then glanced up at Sniper. “I was looking for you, because—”
Sniper shushed her. “Hey, I know what they told you, but I’m still an adult. I’m fine…” he then noticed the wall she was leaned up next to. “Wait…this is where Sage keeps those pets?”
“Oh,” Lar-Nah looked through the plexiglass and into the strange habitat. “Yes, I forgot that. I saw them when I was here, they’re Komodo dragons.”
Sniper blinked in alarm. “What!?” he moved her out of the way, peering into the area. Sure enough, at least four large lizards roamed around within.
Pyro seemed rather alarmed at the discovery, mumbling and tapping the glass. Lar-Nah stared at the creatures for a long moment, before remarking, “They look unhealthy, their skin is dull and they’re thin.”
“Yeah…that’s what I think, too,” Sniper agreed, frowning. The smell of smoke met his nose again, and he grabbed both Pyro and Lar-Nah’s hands. “Let’s get out of here, come on,”
Something ‘clinked’ from within the cloud of smoke, and within moments, Phoenix Sage emerged from the smog. He looked disheveled, and he carried a pistol in his hand.
"I see you three have found my pets," he grumbled, his voice sounding nothing like the cheerful man Sniper had met weeks before.
Sniper made a face, looking him up and down. “Jesus, mate. You have this money, and this is what you do? You keep pets that shouldn’t be pets and you wave around a gun like that? Bloody hell, just go home.”
Sage grinned a slimy grin and laughed. “Oh, but that would be too easy! Too easy…my father’s legacy deserves a proper send off!” he held the pistol up, waving it around while his gaze shifted to Lar-Nah. “Weren’t you the one we took off that rocket ship? Why do you stay with them? Show gratitude for your rescue, at the very least…”
“Are you joking?” Lar-Nah scoffed. “You? Please. You stuffed me in a storage closet and gave me beans for a day, I owe you nothing.” She then reached over to a control panel right beside the plexiglass and hit a large red button in the center. “Anyway!”
There was a loud, siren-like sound, and the plexiglass slid open slowly. Sage let out an outraged shriek. “You vandal!” he screamed, aiming the pistol directly at Lar-Nah, but Sniper just tackled him to the ground. Sage began to wrestle Sniper as the pistol skidded across the floor (which ultimately looked ridiculous, as Sniper was significantly larger than him).
The Komodo dragons climbed out of their enclosure, free, and they explored the smoke-filled area with intense eyes. Sage howled and tried to dig his nails into Sniper’s arms, but Sniper just twisted both arms behind his back.
All of the sudden, a voice shouted from the smog, “Sage!”
Sniper and Sage paused their scuffling, both looking up in the direction of the voice. Helen stepped out of the smog, staring Sage down with golden eyes.
“That’s not who you want,” Helen informed him. “I’m here, now—let’s settle this.”
Sage scrambled out from beneath Sniper, struggling to his feet. “Gladly,” he huffed. “But we’ll do it my way, woman!”
Before Helen could ask what that meant, Sage got up and bolted down the hallway. Not knowing what else to do, Helen gave chase, and soon they arrived to a very familiar area of the building.
Sage had kept his father’s office the same way it was since the day he died. Isaac had loved medieval customs and literature, and due to this, he had an immense sword collection.
Helen entered the office, recalling how she had spent afternoons there, hearing Isaac rant about business, pretending to listen to him as he told her about the wonders of capitalism, and shuddering in revulsion when he stroked her hair.
Sage stood in the room, clutching his wounded shoulder and catching his breath. He glared daggers at Helen, his gentleman appearance seemingly peeled away and replaced with a feral undercoat. He stumbled to the swords on the wall, grabbing one.
“You know,” he began, never taking his eyes off Helen. “I always wondered what my father saw in you. You’re nothing but a wolf in sheep’s clothing – you never cared about him or his dreams!”
Helen walked to the swords, grabbing one as well. “All your father cared about were his own dreams,” she informed Phoenix. “I doubt he even cared about you—you were simply a vehicle for him to continue his legacy.” She stepped forward, coming face to face her with former stepson, their eyes locking. “Phoenix, your life will improve once you stop trying to grant your father immortality through your own career. I’ll give you a chance to walk away and forget about all this, and perhaps you’ll find a new way of life that does not involve Isaac.”
Phoenix just stared at her, nothing behind his eyes. He raised his sword above his head, bringing it down swiftly to try and make the first blow.
Helen blocked it with the sword in her own hand, and as he lifted the sword to try again, she went for his wounded shoulder. He kicked her down, though, but she continued to block his blows while struggling to her feet.
Outside, the fire began to engulf the building. The mercenaries had all escaped the building, but on the way out, Miss Pauling stopped Spy.
“Where’s Helen?” she asked breathlessly.
Spy looked over his shoulder at the flames. “I…I do not know. Still in there, I suppose,”
“God…” Pauling’s voice trembled.
Olivia only stared at the building, staring anxiously at each window, searching for some sign of life.
Pauling took a long breath. “I need to go back for her!”
Spy blocked her from entering. “No! It’s too dangerous!”
“She needs me!” Pauling shouted, trying to get past him, only to be held back by Heavy.
Inside, Sage smashed off a corner of his father’s desk with the blade of his sword, nearly missing Helen’s hand.
As Helen backed off, Sage panted out, “All you’ve ever wanted was that Australium…nothing else!”
Helen held her own sword up, her glare locked on Sage’s face. “I wanted to forget pain. That was all I wanted – but we all need pain, Phoenix,”
Phoenix charged at her, aiming at her head with his sword, but he only got a piece of her hair. She yanked herself away, ignoring the lock of hair she'd just lost in order to hit him in the head with the sword's handle.
As he fell to the ground, Helen stood over him. “It’s over,” she informed him. “Go home.”
Phoenix stared up at her, panting, and he struggled to his feet. “All I ever wanted,” he began. “Was you to see my vision, my father’s vision…but you don’t see it. Your daughter doesn’t see it,” he backed away slowly. “Forget you – I’ll go chop her to bits instead!”
Before Helen could react, Sage sprinted out of the office and down the hall, sword still in hand. Helen screamed at him, though she wasn’t sure exactly what it was she said. She gave chase, but skidded to a stop when she watched Sage slip and fall down the adjacent staircase.
He toppled down the stairs and landed with a ‘smack’ at the bottom. Helen caught up to the top of the stairs, just in time to see him start to try and get up. He grunted again, grabbing his sword, but he shrieked and collapsed again, seemingly being yanked down the rest of the stairs.
It took a moment for Helen to realize what had happened: the Komodo dragons had found him. She caught a glimpse of them dragging him away, but she didn’t stop to watch them attack him. Instead, she darted for the office once more.
Once in the office, she opened the window and popped the screen out, preparing to make her escape. Carefully, she stepped out onto the ledge, attempting to try and make her way down.
From her spot in the parking lot, Olivia noticed her mother and let out a gasp. “There she is!” she exclaimed, pointing to Helen’s shape on the window’s ledge.
Heavy quickly rushed to the spot beneath the window. “We will catch you! Jump!”
The other mercenaries swarmed around, all encouraging her to jump while holding out their arms with a promise to catch her when she fell. After several agonizing seconds, Helen finally jumped. Sure enough, the web of arms caught her before she could hit the ground, and it was Engineer who helped to gently set her down.
“Where’s Sage?” he asked her, breathless.
Helen’s body shook from the excitement of it all, but she managed to compose herself enough to speak. “Defeated.”
Engineer put his arm around her, giving her a light half-hug. “Well done, ma’am…”
Helen embraced him back, letting out a shaky sigh. “I could not have done it without all of you…”
Miss Pauling came running up, throwing her arms around Helen. “You’re okay! Oh, my god…”
Helen hugged her in return, and she smiled a little. “I am…” she pulled away, examining Pauling. “Are you all right?” when Pauling nodded, Helen turned to the others. “What about all of you? Do we have everyone?”
“Aye, we did a headcount!” Demo confirmed. “We best get out of here, I hear fire trucks!”
Helen nodded. “Yes, of course,” she looked down at Olivia, and without hesitation, she gathered her up in her arms. “Come here, Olivia...”
Olivia accepted the hug eagerly, burying her face into her mother’s hair. The others moved in close, examining Olivia and making sure she was okay.
“Get this girl home!” Soldier barked.
Helen kissed her daughter’s forehead, and she let out a light laugh. “Yes—lets get you home…”
As the authorities arrived, everyone fled the scene. The Security Republic employees had all left as well, and no one could seem to recover the camera footage.
Whether or not Sage was discovered at any point would be unknown for a very long time.
Yes. Nancy has had a lot of “love interests” since the show began. She dated Nick. Then Owen. Had a fling with Gil. Had a one-episode flirtation with Tamura. Had a near-kiss in a dreamscape with Ace. Now, she’s most likely going to develop a crush on Agent Park. That’s six guys over the span of, what, about five months? That’s crazy, right?! Well...honestly...not really. Why not? Because five of those six guys weren’t actually love interests at all.
Nick was just a way for Nancy to deal with the grief of losing her mom. They met, were instantly attracted to one another, and then immediately began sleeping together before even knowing anything about each other. Once they started to get to know each other, however, they quickly learned they were incompatible, and their relationship fizzled out and ended almost as abruptly as it began.
Owen came along as Nancy and Nick’s relationship was already in trouble. The two were instantly attracted to each other, and Owen’s persistent and flirty nature eventually wore her down so that after things were over with Nick, it was easy for her to gravitate toward Owen. He was an older, successful, good-looking guy who was infatuated with her. He was her rebound. Being with him helped her get over the nagging feeling that maybe she should have tried harder to keep her relationship with Nick. Sure, she was going to run off to New York with him for a while, but not because she was madly in love with him. She was just done with everything she’d been dealing with all season. And then, of course, Owen was murdered, which ended their relationship. But they wouldn’t have lasted long anyway. He was just another distraction for her.
Then, there was Gil. I didn’t see an instant attraction between them, but more of an instant curiosity about each other—and it only got more intense as the Wraith latched onto Nancy and slowly clouded her judgement. There was never any love between the two. In fact, Nancy didn’t even seem all that interested in him until after Ace planted the idea in her head. Nancy and Gil’s “relationship” was short-lived and mostly controlled by the Wraith, and in my opinion, Gil doesn’t even count as a “love interest”.
Next, we have Tamura, who has never been confirmed as an official love interest for her. There was definitely a hint of something between the two, but mostly only coming from Tamura. The only time I detected any sort of attraction to him from Nancy was when she was under the lust spell. So, again, he can in no way be considered a love interest.
I’m going to skip over Ace for a second to discuss Agent Park, who will most likely be Nancy’s next big crush (based on the fact it’s been confirmed we’re getting a love triangle this season). Again, like Tamura and Gil, he’s not going to be an actual “love interest”. He’s going to be Nancy’s way of coping with wanting someone else that she thinks doesn’t want her back. Agent Park, like Owen, is older and good-looking and accomplished. Why wouldn’t she develop a bit of a crush on him? Why wouldn’t she have developed a crush on any of the guys listed here? It’s perfectly believable that a young woman Nancy’s age could very quickly move from one guy to another in a very short period of time because her relationships with them are not being portrayed as true love—just attraction.
Which leads me to Ace. It’s obvious that Nancy has been attracted to him from day one (she can be seen sneaking looks at him in season 1, and then in season 2 she reveals that she’s noticed how pretty his eyes are), but it wasn’t an instantaneous “love” connection. She didn’t have that automatic thought of “Oh, I MUST bang this guy STAT!” Instead, they slowly became friends. Partners in crime. They each became the person the other one trusted the most. They grew to love each other platonically first. And now, that platonic love has turned into something much, much more. This is something Nancy has never experienced with any other guy before.
Ace is the first and only guy Nancy has ever had to work for. Every other guy has immediately worshiped the ground she walks on. And while Ace does too, that’s not all he has to offer her. They’ve taken the time to get to know each other. They would do anything for each other. I’m sure they would even die for each other. Nancy never had that with Nick or Owen. Certainly not with Gil. She wouldn’t have had that with Tamura, and she won’t have that with Agent Park.
Ace has been Nancy’s only TRUE “love interest” this entire series. She may have liked and been attracted to many other men so far (sorry, but that’s only natural!), but she wasn’t in love with any of them. She’s in love with Ace, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon...especially after he realizes he’s in love with her, too. They’re soulmates. Endgame. And no other “potential love interest” is going to take that away from them.
[𝐓𝐇𝐄 𝐒𝐏𝐄𝐂𝐈𝐀𝐋𝐒: 𝐞𝐮𝐧𝐛𝐢𝐧, 𝐬𝐮𝐧𝐰𝐨𝐨 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐞𝐫𝐢𝐜]
[𝐍𝐎𝐓𝐄: 𝐞𝐮𝐧𝐛𝐢𝐧'𝐬 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐟𝐢𝐥𝐞 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐭𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐬 𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐭𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐬𝐩𝐨𝐢𝐥𝐞𝐫𝐬 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐧𝐞𝐱𝐭 𝐜𝐡𝐚𝐩𝐭𝐞𝐫]
Her wisdom is like a bottomless pond. You throw stones in and they sink into the darkness and dissolve.
— Amy Tan, The Joy Luck Club
Uh-oh someone's throwing a hissy fit over people having fun and being excited over the chocolate guy! Someone's sad they didnt get chocolate huh?
I've dug my own grave with this one. Time to get plotting ig
that almost sounds like everyday household cleaning
by ifiseeyouagain (@luvomelifehazza) (NR, 4.6k)
Harry glares at him. “The couch is dirty.”
Louis looks at the crumbs scattered around him as if he’s seeing them for the first time. “Oh, no worries about that.” He brushes the crumbs off so that they fall on the carpet. Still not helping. “Here, I’ve cleaned it up, now. Come on then, give me a cuddle.”
He makes grabby hands in the air, and it takes Harry a lot of willpower to not be fazed by them. He maintains his stance. “Now, you made the carpet more dirty,” he says pointingly, hoping now Louis would get the hint.
Louis swallows down a laugh. “Don’t worry about that, love. The housemaid would clean it up.”
Harry feels anger rise up inside him. “We don’t have a housemaid,” he says through gritted teeth. Why the fuck is Louis being so damn clueless? As if he hardly knows Harry at all.
Louis widens his eyes in fake surprise. “We don’t?”
“No!” Harry snaps, clenching his fists.
“Then who’s been doing the cleaning all this while?”
aka: Harry wants to clean their home, Louis is not helping
Thanks so much for the tag @dustylovelyrun!! I hope you’re doing well!^^
“Do you have any plans for dinner tonight?” she asks, leaning on Nerezza’s desk.
“Maybe,” she replies indifferently as she slides her paper and chair to the right to create more space between them, and continues writing. “Maybe not.”
“Then let’s go out to dinner!” she beams. “It’ll be like a date.”
Her pen abruptly stops scribbling over the paper, and she stares her dead in the eye, giving her a look as if she thinks she’s spouting nonsense (because she does).
And Nebula can’t contain the giggle rising in her chest anymore. “I’m kidding, I’m kidding. Just a friend date, of course.”
Open tag as always of course^^ Also tagging @deadlycupid, @splashinkling, and @writerfae, if you want :)
you have the kind of eyes to fall in love with. and apparently I did.