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Don't be offended at the title. "Teenagers" is just my way of saying "people who write unprofessional/shallow stories." Not all teenagers write shallow stories, it just sounds catchier.... Anyway.

The first thing I want to make clear is: I'm not talking about anything mechanical in this deviation. Grammar/spelling is important (obviously), but that point has been beaten to death by people on the internet already. My purpose, as always, is to talk about the stories themselves, regardless of the way they are communicated. Whether it be through written word or on-the-spot narration, I believe there are certain tricks to telling good stories. Not rules, mind you. Tricks.

I don't believe that telling good stories is about what you "should" do, rather than what you shouldn't. Example: people generally hate Mary Sues, right? Well, sometimes I notice things that are "like" Mary Sues, in the sense that they're equally as shallow/unprofessional ways of telling stories. The purpose of this deviation is to point them out. I won't be talking about Mary Sues or self inserts in this deviation. This is about things that tend to go more unnoticed (I already have deviations about those anyway).

1. Thinking that "most" = best

Sometimes people who write think they're making "the best story ever," because it's the MOST dramatic, MOST dark, MOST romantic MOST (insert your choice of adjective here). Having the most of something doesn't equate to it being the best. Think of it like salt.

2. Unbalance

Do you ever read a story, and it feels like there was a big hole in it? Maybe it was a tragedy that focused on nothing but tragic events. The author got carried away in their emotions and didn't create a well-rounded world for us to care about while the sad things take place. Sure, sad things are sad, but that is no accomplishment of the author. It would be MORE sad if the audience had a well-created world to be sad about in the first place.
In fanfiction, the writers have the advantage of writing about something that people already care about. That's how a lot of people with barely any imagination can get so many people to like their fanfiction stories. "Hey! Let's take the Once-ler and find a way to drench him in blood! It sure took talent to think of that!"
Never judge someone's imagination by how popular their fanfiction is. Never...

3. Narcissism

Sometimes people consider themselves to be a certain way. They write certain genres or about certain themes for the sake of adding to their self-proclaimed image. They use their stories as stepping stones (a lot of times without even realizing it) to show off in front of other people. A lot of times it's in the little things, strategically placed to look innocent or humble. "The woman shook her head in admiration at *insert-person-that's-supposed-to-be-like-them's-name.* 'That girl sure is *insert-their-choice-of-adjective!* We may never understand her!"

4. Abusing character roles (sort of a Part 2 of Narcissism)

I want you to think about Belle from Beauty in the Beast for a minute (the Disney version). If you're familiar with it, think of the song sung by the villagers about her in the beginning. Has anyone else ever noticed something...odd about it? The villagers are singing about how different (or "weird") she is, all because she reads books and acts like... well, the average girl you'd meet every day on DeviantArt. Meanwhile, if you met one of those villagers in real life, you'd probably think of THEM as the strange ones (first of all, they're abnormally nosy, all bothering to sing a big song about a perfectly normal girl whose personal life they REALLY bothered to have apparently looked so much into... o_O).
Okay. I understand that can be a strategy in story telling (using the background to add to the general effect of a certain thing... i.e Belle wanting a break from her boring life).
I bring this up however, mostly as a warning. I don't know healthy it is, that a lot of teenager girls these days really seem to think they're sooo great that they write stories about themselves and use other people as tools to look good. They make people (sometimes fake, sometimes real) in their stories impressed far too easily by themselves (or certain things) sometimes to the point even of contradiction. It falls into the same attitude as the narcissism example.
Sometimes it goes beyond, "Oh, a cute little Disney story," and gets really narcissistic and vain.
A story will suffer if it's written for anything besides the pure pleasure of writing it. Ulterior motives distract from making it the best it possibly can be. Not to mention, nobody likes being used as an audience for people who can't stop shining the spotlight on themselves. (It needed to be said).
Furthermore, Disney movies are corny. It's a fact. That's why we like them. The point is simple: if you are writing a CORNY story, feel free to use their little trick of making the whole world conform to one character/theme (heck, make everyone burst into song about them!) If you're NOT writing a corny story, avoid it at all costs. It's a cheap trick, and it's no substitute for actually making there be something special about whatever character/thing you're trying to make something special about.

Fun fact: "Bully" characters are possibly the biggest form of abuse to story-telling. This can be in the form of a snooty, popular girl at school who picks on the main-character we're supposed to feel sorry for, or in the form of unreasonably/obsessively cruel bullies who are far from even borderline realistic. They're the classic example of cheating in a story; the cheapest way to make other characters seem special or victim-ly.

5. Pretty feelings

Did you ever put on an Owl City song while you were writing/drawing and think something like: Lalalalalala, beautifulness, and the dreams and the beautifullness of the wonderful outerspace, flying through the sky and the shooting stars lalala!
Yeah, we could tell.
No, seriously, it's fine to get your inspiration from wherever you want. Just make sure that while you're getting all into the music that you don't let the emotions that the song brings you be your only guide.
Sometimes people get REALLY excited about their characters or a story they're making up and draw all this beautiful art of it, and you're like, "Hey! That's an amazing picture of the main character on a shooting star! So... when can I read this?!" Then you see the story, and think, "...this is it?"
Don't fall into the trap of thinking that your emotions are the story. A lot of people who listen to music while they write make this mistake, though that isn't to say that listening to music when you write is always automatically bad.

To conclude this, there's really only one thing I want to say. Write because you like to. Write about things you like no matter what they are and force them to fit together. Write about things that you like and wouldn't be too ashamed to show your friends or family. Odds are, if you're too embarrassed to show it to the people you know best, it's not coming from the heart. I don't mean "your emotions" as your heart. It's not really YOU if it's something you're embarrassed of. Embarrassment can be a sign that you know deep down your story might be a wee bit... well, stupid.
And then there are the people with no dignity.......

I love feedback. If anyone has anything interesting to add, I'd be glad to hear!
See my other posts about writing:
How Not to tell a Story…
What really defines Mary Sue…
A list of cliches in story-telling…
Common problems with self-inserts…
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Golden Opportunity

"Kyouko, open up."

"Mmmmm... uuhhhh?"

Her mouth opened in a yawn. I forked a piece of french toast, covered in a slight sheen of maple syrup, and held it over her mouth as she yawned, letting the syrup drip down onto her tongue.

She paused for a moment, then her eyes opened wide. "That was sugar."

"I brought you breakfast in bed," I said as I sat by her side, smiling. "Good morning."

"You are the greatest," The redhead replied as she took the tray I had in my hands and placed it on her own lap, plate of french toast and all. Now that she was sitting up and wide awake, I stood up and pulled open the curtains.

The sun had already made some progress across the sky. It was already ten in the morning, and way later than I would have normally been around. Kyouko must have noticed, but she was too busy scarfing down french toast to ask me immediately.

"Mami-san," she began, licking the syrup off of her fingertips. "Why are you still here, anyway?"

"It's Golden Week, remember?" I said, sipping some tea as I leaned against the window, looking out at the beautiful day. "I've got the entire week off and no work to do for school."

"Ah, right." Kyouko nodded, finishing off some more french toast and drinking some orange juice. "So... what's the deal with the breakfast in bed?"

"It's a bribe," I said, smiling at her as innocently as I could. "It's Golden Week, so I want to do something fun with you today."

Kyouko had the deer-in-the-headlights expression on her face I had been hoping to see, complete with a stick of french toast in her mouth. Wonderful.

"Ah-aah, uh.... huh," she stammered, swallowing her food and smiling in that way she smiled when she was caught off-guard. "So... what is it you wanna to do?"

I steepled my fingers and gave her the most serene smile I could. "I want to..."


"You had me terrified for a second there," Kyouko laughed.

An hour and a half later, we had finished our breakfast, Kyouko had showered, and I had helped brush her long, cinnamon-scented red hair while she ate some of the apple pie a la mode left over from yesterday.

All around us, teenagers and kids with their parents milled about as we sat on a bench together.

"Oh? Why?"

She grinned, flipping her hair over her shoulder. "I was worried that you were going to try to get me to wear something frilly again!"

I raised an eyebrow at that. ".... oh?"

"Yeah. Thank goodness you only wanted to go to the amusement park." She took a bite of her pink cotton candy as people walked past us to the rides.

I stared at her red elbow gloves and red jacket. Then I wondered how they would look with a frill or two or five. "Oh, I don't know..." I said.

Kyouko turned her head to look at me and her eyes widened a little. "... oh, no."

"What?" I asked, trying to project innocence.

"You're doing the chin-stroking thing again," she said, pointing. I twitched my fingers against my cheek. I hadn't even noticed they were there. "And you only do that when you're getting an idea."

"Well, it is a rather good one," I replied, trying to control my reflex and lowering my hand to my side. "Maybe I'll keep it in mind for the next time. I think you'd look rather good as a Love Angel."

She sighed in mock resignation, facepalming. "How do I get myself into these situations?"

"Because you want to make me happy, even if I ask for something ridiculous?" I volunteered.

"That, and I'm a total sucker for your amazing breakfasts." She laughed and stood up, stretched out her arms, turned to me, and held out her hand. "Well, come on! I owe you a fun dat... er, day out, don't I?"

She was totally about to say date. I smiled, hoped I wasn't blushing as hard as I thought I was, and put my hand in hers. "Yes, you do."

Kyouko intertwined her fingers with mine, and I stood and walked with her over to the rides, a slight bounce in my step and a grin on my face that wouldn't go away.


Where Mitakihara took great pride in how sleek and shiny and technologically advanced its public spaces were, Kasamino didn't have much choice but to be its quainter, more eccentric neighbour.

It was fairly obvious that Kasamino Amusement Park had been deliberately designed to be a throwback to grand, old-school amusement parks, so it was all very kid-friendly and more relaxed than Mitakihara amusement parks with their Disneyland-style fast rides and relentless entertainment.

There were also far less people here, which was why I had chosen it instead of a Mitakihara amusement park. I wasn't interested in standing in long lines on my date with Kyouko.

We planned to trade off more fast-paced rides with slower ones. The very first ride we settled on was a rotating swing ride that got unexpectedly fast and made me dizzy ere long. I leaned heavily on Kyouko's arm after that while she patted my head and gave me some of her ice cream.

I groaned as I closed my eyes and pressed my face against her arm. "That was horrible. Never doing that again."

"Who would think that the beautiful, skilled veteran Puella Magi of Mitakihara, Tomoe Mami, gets motion sickness after just a few go-arounds?" she chuckled, taking off my beret and rubbing the back of my head to comfort me.

"I would point out that you just called me beautiful," I moaned, "but I'm still too dizzy for that."

We were on one of the park benches near the slow train ride, and only a few families were around. She leaned over me, and suddenly I found my nose filled with the comforting smell of apple and cinnamon as she kissed me on the head.

"You are beautiful," she murmured. Then she made a face. "And you always bring out my affectionate side with no effort at all. I hate that."

Despite my headache, I giggled at that. "You were such a sweet girl when we first met, you know."

"Yeah, well, nowadays I need to make sure to keep up my badass image," she said, flipping her hair and trying to project a Homura-like aura of impenetrable cool. "But still, maybe if it's just you around, I can be all dere and mushy."

"Mm, that would be nice," I replied, closing my eyes and leaning against her arm. "I think I'm feeling a bit better now, though."

"All right. Let's go do something slow, then."

She stood up and I stood with her, still leaning against her arm, and she walked slowly to keep me steady. We wandered in the other direction this time, towards the more old-school side of the park. Over here there were slow carousel rides and milder rides aimed at younger kids, with more of a carnival atmosphere going on.

We walked past some booths and a group of kids went by us, talking in loud voices. Too loud. My head was starting to spin again and I tugged at Kyouko's red jacket, groaning.

"Can I sit down?" I asked, holding on to her arm.

"Yeah, sure, right here," she replied, guiding me over to another bench and sitting me down. "You okay?"

"I could use some water," I said, holding my hand to my head.

Kyouko nodded up and down quickly. "Hold on, I'll be right back." She dashed off to the nearest soda machine, and I closed my eyes and tried to block out the sunlight. I grit my teeth. I was the one who had invited Kyouko out on a date, and now I was the one being a burden. This wasn't how our date was supposed to go at all.

She was back before I opened my eyes again, pressing a cold bottle of water into my hands. "Here."

"Mm. Thanks," I said, and I opened it up, took a long sip, and then pressed it to my forehead. "Sorry about this."

"Don't be," Kyouko replied, taking out a pack of gum. "Want some?"

I nodded and took a stick. Before I could finish unwrapping it, though, I felt her hand on my leg and turned just in time to feel her gentle lips against my forehead.

"I... I still kind of suck at being a good... girlfriend," she said, pausing before the last word. She blushed and rubbed the back of her neck, chuckling a little. "But yeah. Feel better, okay?"

My nausea was already lessening, but more than that, I felt the sensation of my heart pounding. I looked down at my fidgeting left hand while my right held the cold bottle of water against my head and replayed the feeling of her hand on my leg in my memory. "I w-will."

Kyouko smiled, then looked over to the right. "Oh... hey, I hadn't noticed that."

"H-hm?" I was still too distracted by the sensory memory of her hand on my leg and her kiss and where that could have led to. "What hadn't you noticed?"

She nodded to the booth right in front of us. "It's a shooting booth."

"Heh, that's unusual to find in an amusement park these days," I said, popping in the stick of gum and feeling my nausea begin to recede. "Do you want to give it a try?"

"You'd be better at shooting than I would, so no," she said, leaning back.

I kept looking at the booth, though. The teenager running the booth had a blank stare on his face, clearly bored without any participants. Behind him, I saw the rows of prizes, ranging from comically oversized teddy bears to plush rabbits to....

"... oooh, those certainly look interesting."

Kyouko blinked. "What look interesting?"

I pointed. "Those sets of ears and tails." Specifically, a yellow-tinted set of tanuki ears and bushy tail, and a set next to it, red fox ears and matching tail.

She snorted. "Ahahahaha, those look ridiculous."

"Hmm..." I closed my eyes and tried to stand on unsteady feet.

Kyouko's hand found my arm. "Wait, you're still a bit too sick—"

"I want to try winning those," I said. "It'll make me feel better."

"You can't..." I opened my eyes again to see Kyouko standing too, worry in her eyes. She frowned, then sighed and tossed her hair to the side. "All right, fine. Sit down, Mami-san."


"I'm gonna go try it out." She reached out to steady the cold water bottle against my forehead. "You sit here and watch, aight?"

But you can't... I looked at her, then nodded. "All right, I can watch."

Kyouko nodded back and released my arm, then walked over to the shooting booth in front of us while I followed her with my eyes.

The bored teenager stirred back to alertness and approached Kyouko, and his mouth moved while Kyouko nodded. He handed her one of the guns (a modified rifle, presumably so that it could only shoot small pellets) and pointed to the targets. The smaller the target, the better the prize could be.

I chewed my gum, feeling my head clear up and my nausea recede little by little. Apple flavour? Figures.

I couldn't hear what they were saying, but Kyouko nodded along for a while until the teenager backed off and left the gun in Kyouko's hands. She raised it, looking down its sights.

But Kyouko had never learned how to shoot a gun.

She couldn't be blamed for it, of course, since she didn't use a gun as her weapon-- but I could see from here that if she held the gun in that position, her aim would be off and she'd never make her target. The gun was probably unbalanced anyway. It needed the steady hand of...

I took another sip of water as Kyouko fired. As expected, she didn't make the target she wanted, and I heard her low growl from where I sat.

"... damnit..."

I took deep breaths and felt my headache go away as I chewed. Meanwhile, Kyouko raised the gun again.

She was speaking in a low voice, but there was a lull in the crowd's noise and my ears picked up on it this time.

"I'm never gonna get her to forgive me for getting her sick at this rate... I suck at this..."

I realized then what exactly she was trying to do.

She was so inexperienced, but she was still doing it for me. As a way to make up for... making me sick on our very first ride, on a date I had invited her on.

My heart began to race. And then I had an idea.

"Hmph," she scowled as she missed her target the second time. "She makes it look so damn easy, too."

"Who does?" the teenager asked, looking up from his cell phone as Kyouko reloaded her gun.

"She doe--"

Kyouko jumped as I put my right hand over hers.

"I do," I replied for her, coming up behind her.

"M-Mami-san!" she stammered. "You should be sitting down, you're still--"

"I'm feeling better," I replied. "Now come on." I moved my left hand to her waist. "Stand up straight, no slouching."

She shivered at my touch. I pretended not to notice. I moved closer, breasts pressing against her back as I raised her shooting arm higher. "Hold it like this. Keep your finger off the trigger unless you're about to fire."

I looked down and nudged her right leg with my own. "A wider stance. There you go." I raised her arm again. "Don't let your arm sink." I fought back a brief wave of nausea and came in closer to guide her aim.

She was making a low nervous hum that I knew she only made when she was very, very nervous. I was concerned. Was I coming off as too commanding? Oh god, I was, wasn't I? I leaned in to murmur in her ear in a low voice. "Are you okay, Kyouko-san?"

"Fine," she squeaked, her voice putting the lie to her words. "Totally fine."

I was beginning to worry, but I would back off. I was being too demanding already. "All right, then. Raise your arm, hold it steady... look through the sights."

Her aim was off by a few centimetres, but it was close enough. "Fire whenever you think you've got it."

Kyouko held on for a few seconds longer, then fired. Whoa. She had nudged just close enough to hit the small target she'd wanted to hit.

The teenager gave her a clap of approval. "Nice. You gonna keep going?"

"Do you want to?" I asked Kyouko.

"Y-yeah," she stammered a reply. The teenager nodded and looked back down at his cell phone.

I nodded and let go of her arm. But before I could back off completely, she objected. "Wait."


"I, ah.... do you... can I get your help on this again?"

My left hand was still on her waist, my mouth still close to her ear. "You can do it on your own. You don't really need my help, Kyouko."

"Y-yeah, I know, but..." She swallowed, and I noticed a dark blush on her cheeks. "I-it's more reassuring if... you..."

".... ah." I nodded and placed my hand over hers. "I'm not coming off as too overbearing, am I?"

"N-no! Keep doing what you're doing." She coughed. "It's totally f-fine. Really."

Suddenly I realized what was actually going on here, and a faint warm blush came over my own cheeks as well.

"Well, if you say so." I ran my hand down her back to make her stand up straight. She nearly jumped at my touch again, but she was definitely standing up ramrod straight now. Oh, now I definitely knew what was going on.

I ran my hand down her side, ostensibly to guide her into position, but really to see her shiver. "Keep looking down the sights..." I moved my right hand to her arm, to secure her aim. The urge to tease was strong, but I mostly checked my impulses and leaned in, resting my chin against her shoulder, and turned my head to murmur in her ear again. "... Fire whenever you're ready."

She fired again. And this time she hit the target square in the center.

The teenager looked up, nodded in approval before looking back down at his texting. "Pick whatever you want from any of the shelves."

Kyouko put the gun down on the table. I backed away, pulled my water bottle out of the purse where I'd left it, and watched as Kyouko reached up to grab the two sets of animal ears and tails that I had wanted.

"T-this one's yours," she said in a husky voice, face still a deep red. She handed me the set of tanuki ears and tail.

I smiled, still chewing my gum, and accepted the gift. "Thank you very much, Kyouko."

Instead of replying, Kyouko fidgeted with obvious anxiety. I tilted my head. What was she thinking?

"H-hey... are you okay to get on the train ride?"

I put the cold water to my forehead again and nodded. "Sure."

In a stroke of luck, we made it over to the miniature station just as the line was ending, and walked over to the back end of the train to get the back seats. This was a calm, relaxed ride as far as carnival rides went, just a loop around the grounds and the large pond in the back.

I settled down, quite happy to be on such a slow ride. Kyouko took the seat across from me in the small train carriage.

Heh, we were alone together, weren't we? Kyouko seemed to have noticed it before I did. She was looking out the window, a distinctive red tint to her cheeks. She never admitted to being embarrassed, but after a long enough time living with her, I had learned to pick up on those signs.

I put on the tanuki ear headband and onto the back of my skirt I clipped the tanuki tail. Kyouko was still looking out and didn't notice. I reached over and took the red fox ear headband and slipped it onto her head.

Kyouko turned to look at me in surprise. I grinned. "As expected, you look cute in that."

She paused for a moment, face turning redder, and then she pulled out her soul gem. I had just enough time to begin to ask "what are you--" when red chain curtains obscured the windows, and she leaned forward to interrupt me with a finger over my lips.

"Now then," she said with a grin, reaching behind her and fastening on the fox tail, "I think I'd like to take some revenge for earlier..."

I ran my hands through her hair in the dark red light as she leaned forward and took advantage of the golden opportunity.

She pulled out of the kiss after a moment, touching her lips. "Hey, apple flavour!"

"What else did you expect, silly?" I asked, pulling her back in for a longer taste.
Artist credit here: [link]

Okay so this is my submission for that KyouMami art trade thing for :iconownage4u91:. And I would have finished it faster if she would stop reblogging delicious yuri for me to stare at, damnit. (and no I cannot write short fiction, this is basically the shortest complete fic I have ever written and it's still over 3k words lol)

Fox!Kyouko and tanuki!Mami is basically the greatest thing ever, I don't know where those animal associations came from but I love them. They are just so adorable oh my god.

Right, some notes.

- I write using musical dissonance, meaning that when writing a sad scene I listen to upbeat or catchy music and when I write a happy scene I listen to sad music. Since this was more of a neutral, calm, story, obviously I had to listen to Love is War: [link]

- Kasamino's carnival/amusement park is based on the only amusement park I've ever been to, Lakeside Amusement Park in Denver, CO. It's over a century old and very old-school as a result. The last time I went there on a date, I got motion sickness with ridiculous ease. It's still a really awesome park. And yes, that slow train ride exists, a train that goes on a loop around the lake.

- Yes, chewing on gum is a really good way to get rid of motion sickness.

- There are a few allusions to Apple and Cinnamon. Mami still likes making Kyouko cosplay as other magical girls. In this case, she'd like her to cosplay as the Love Angel, Wedding Peach.

- As mentioned, I simply adore fox!Kyouko and tanuki!Mami. Here, have some more. [link]

My internet's been rebelling against me for the past few days, so I basically have to submit this and run. Hope you like it!
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“Nileas!”  Ausrius bellowed again.  He could find no trace of his fellow, even with his enhanced senses, and helmet overlay.  No trace of the daemon either.
     He surveyed the cavern again, slowly re-examining all the corners.  He checked the load in his bolter, and advanced, weapon at the ready, continuing to scan in visible light, infrared, and wireframe overlay.  The ripples and folds of the tunnel played tricks on the mind, casting odd shadows and concealing entire caverns behind seemingly solid formations of stone.
    “Nileas,” he voxed again.  “Brother, do you copy?”  Likewise the dense rock played havoc with the vox net.  He had no contact with his squad commander, or Imperial forces on the surface, and, up until a quarter-hour ago, only intermittent contact with his battle brother, and that plagued by static.  Now it seemed that too was gone.
    Something slithered across stone nearby; something massive.  Ausrius turned sharply, bringing the bolter up.  He couldn’t see it, but it was dangerously close.  He moved forward, stalking the hideous presence.  Though he and his squad were nominally doing the hunting, he could not shake the feeling of being hunted.  He heard the clicking of insectoid limbs and mouthparts; the heavy slithering sound again.  Overlapping echoes, reflecting and magnifying sounds in unpredictable ways, made it impossible to tell where the source of the sound was.
    He slowed, almost shuffling as he came around a shoulder of stone into an entirely new section of the cave.
    The broad chamber was dome-like, and smooth, the space carved out over millennia by the slow trickle of water.  Stalactites depended from the ceiling in eerily organic formations.  Stalagmites of formidable stature loomed from the uneven floor.  Some were as large around as Ausrius himself.  Others were even larger.  A damp mineral smell pervaded, but Ausrius’ charmed senses detected notes of other things: Astartes sweat ripe with glanded stimulants and pain suppressants, the burned-metal and melted electrical smell of damaged ceramite armor.  Blood.  Nileas had passed through here.  The scents told him his brother was hard pressed, but gave him some thin hope that his fellow yet lived.  There was also an odor of organic decay, rancid meat, ozone and cold – that was the warp beast.
    The thing lurked here somewhere.  Even without the smell, Ausrius could sense its hateful existence.  It was like a cold whisper down the back of his neck.  A feeling of utter wrongness.  But he still could not see it.
    He saw Nileas first, leaning heavily against a stalagmite formation.  His battle brother was sorely wounded, even his gene-hanced physiology laboring under the awful damage he had taken.  His beautiful red and gold power armor was dented and sheared apart, splashed with bright blood.  His left pauldron had been torn away completely, as well as the lower vambrace and gauntlet.  His naked hand, large as it was, seemed tiny and fragile against the bulk of his armor.  The chainsword in his right fist snarled at idle.
    “Nileas.”  Ausrius started forward to his brother’s aid.  
    Nileas’ helmet was also gone, but he did not need the vox speaker to amplify his formidable voice; “Keep back!”  He threw up his left hand, bloody palm out, to emphasize the command.  “It is here.”
    The thing was on them in that moment.  It moved like lightning, like a striking serpent, and a spider, and every terrible thing imagined by human nightmares.  It was too big to move that fast!
    Ausrius unloaded his bolter at it as it dove and surged around the chamber.  It had too many limbs and too many joints in those limbs and parts of its body were like smoke or oil, shifting and reforming in ways that made him nauseous to behold.
    Nileas tried to keep his face toward the thing, his back to the stone, and always the purring chainsword between them.
    The atrocity suddenly threw itself at the wounded Astartes.  Its face – if such a perversion could be said to have a face – split apart, the lower half of the elongated, skull-like head separating into four greedy mandibles.  It’s tooth-lined maw was large enough to swallow a Space Marine whole, power armor and all.
    Nileas braced, holding the chainsword out, ready to meet the thing head on.
    Ausrius poured bolter fire down its throat.  It squealed, shrieked and writhed in on itself in impossible ways.  Ausrius shuddered with revulsion, but kept shooting, reloading when the magazine ran empty.
    One mis-jointed limb shot out and impaled Nileas with a blade-claw more than a meter long.  It sheared through his ceramite armor like it was nothing.  The Astartes groaned aloud.  Ausrius roared his fury.  Nileas struck, slashing off the blade-limb even as it was withdrawn with the same uncanny speed.  The chainsword bit through hard carapace and fleshy inner parts, the blade snarling and gurgling.  Hurt, the daemon wheeled, flailing limbs and loose coils of itself.  It threw Nileas to the floor before boiling away into the shadows, into the next chamber down the tunnel.
    “Nileas!”  Ausrius charged to his brother’s side and knelt protectively over him, the bolter still held ready.
    Nileas groaned again, blood ran from his mouth.  He was panting for breath and Ausrius thought he might be relying entirely on the smaller third lung.  Blood poured from the wound.  Normally Astartes blood clotted quickly, they were fast healers and could weather monstrous amounts of punishment and brutal pain.  But Nileas was past all limits.
    “I’ll get you out of here, Brother,” Ausrius promised.
    “No, Hellan.”
    “Fortitude,” Ausrius urged him.  He slung his bolter across his back and lifted Nileas’ shoulders, supporting him to ease his breathing.
    “Fortitude,” Nileas agreed, “and faith.  You will need both... for this mission.  Take it.”  He pointed toward the chainsword.  He had dropped it when the monster threw him down and the blade had cut off automatically.
    Ausrius hesitated.  “My brother,” he said, “I don’t understand.”
    “You must finish it,” Nileas charged him solemnly.  “Destroy that abomination.  Burn it from existence.  In the Emperor’s name.  You must not fail in this.”  He spoke haltingly, as his breathing labored, but with fierce conviction.
    Slowly, Ausrius understood.  Still cradling his dying battle-brother with one arm, he reached out and grasped the hilt of Nileas’ chainsword and lifted it.  The elder Space Marine nodded.  “Finish this,” he sighed, at the end of his strength.
    “I will, Brother.”
    “Swear.”  Blood pooled on the stones beneath them, and dripped from his mouth.
    Fighting despair at the weight of responsibility hanging over him, Ausrius drew a tight breath.  He firmed his grip upon the chainsword, the heft of a ready weapon always a comfort.  It was an ancient and venerable piece, marked with a roll of honor stretching back into the far history of Kermodes Squad.  Dozens of Howling Griffons heroes had carried this blade into battle for Guilliman and the Imperium, for the Emperor.  Drawing his strength from their memory, and their example, he improvised an oath; “Upon this weapon, and by the Throne of Terra, I swear to pursue this mission until I have succeeded, or until I am dead.”
    Nileas reached up and pressed the bloody palm of his left hand to Ausrius’ cuirass, a make-shift seal to witness and acknowledge the oath.  He let the hand fall and his head rolled back.  He was failing; this nigh-immortal super soldier, this hero, was sliding rapidly down to death, and Ausrius could not help him.
    “Brother,” the younger Astartes began.
    “Go,” Nileas charged him.  It was a whisper, but it carried such weight of authority it could not be refused.
    Ausrius knew every moment he lingered was another moment the warp-beast had to make good its escape.  He loathed the thought of abandoning his battle brother to die alone, but he also knew Nileas expected him to place duty foremost.  Gently, he lowered Nileas to the ground.  “Rest easy, brother.”
    Nileas could not answer.  He clasped his armored right fist across his ruined chest, a warrior’s salute.  He closed his eyes against the pain of each shallow, sucking breath.
    Ausrius steeled himself and turned away, advancing in the direction the monster had gone.  As much as he wanted to, he did not look back.  His brother would not expect such sentimentality, and the beast could strike again at any moment.
    He held Nileas’ chainsword right-handed, in a low guard, and drew his bolt pistol with his left hand.  The bolter rode by its sling, in reserve.  He had also the simple but reliable gladius, and three grenades.  It wasn’t much.  He hoped it would be enough.
    The beast had left its scent like spoor and Ausrius followed that, trying not to gag on the stench of corruption.  Black, oily fluid pooled on the stones in places, faintly sizzling; the noxious ichor which served the thing as blood.  They had hurt it, and if it could be hurt, it could be killed.
    He paused as he heard it; slithering, chittering to itself.  It sounded like it was right beside him, though he could not see it, the acoustics of the cave playing tricks again.  He moved steadily forward, ever vigilant.  He could smell ozone and felt the unholy chill he associated with psykers and the warp.
    It almost escaped.  He came upon it just as it approached the portal.  Ausrius had never seen anything like it.  It was a hole in reality.  A cold rush of air, and faint mist drifted out of this impossible gateway.
    The warp daemon sensed his approach and turned its neck inside out to bring its obscene head around to face him.  It flared its mouthparts at him.  It seethed, limbs and spines and eyes and hungry mouths full of teeth appearing and disappearing across its flesh in a wave that traveled down and around its length.  It was taunting him.  It made a wet, basso, shuddering, purring sound and rolled like a water serpent in a spiral swimming motion into the portal.  It flowed into the unreality as if sinking through the surface of a mirror.
    Ausrius had seen many terrible things in his decades of service with the Adeptus Astartes.  He had weathered them with commendable stoicism, but now he wavered.  Astartes do not feel fear, but alone in this dark desolate place, faced with such an unspeakable monstrosity, and the prospect of following it through a warp gate to an unknown destination, Hellan Ausrius came very close.  How could he, alone, hope to succeed against this?
    He controlled his breathing, willed his racing pulse steady.  He swallowed the bile which had risen in his throat.  He fought down the urge to vomit, conquered the tremor in his limbs.  He recalled his oaths, and his debt to Nileas.  He had no choice, he had to proceed.  He clenched his fist on the grip of the chainsword and thumbed the activation stud.  The blade snarled into life.  Leading with that august weapon, and with a prayer to the God-Emperor on his lips, he strode forward into the warp gate.
This looks so much shorter here! ;p Ah well.

A bit of something. ~NotAnselAdams might find this interesting. :nod:

Notes: Guilliman is the Primarch of the Ultramarines Legion, according to my research the Howling Griffons Chapter is derived from the Ultramarines.

For those not familiar, the Space Marines often swear oaths specific to the mission they are about to undertake, these are usually witnessed by their battle brothers and commemorated by an oath paper which is sealed to their armor.…

The description and function of the 'warp gate' is based on similar device found in the Gaunt's Ghosts novel His Last Command by Dan Abnett.

Rough concept art for the warp daemon:
WIP: Warp-Daemon by KreepingSpawn
and Hellan Ausrius:
Hellan Ausrius - Lineart by KreepingSpawn

Warhammer 40K, Astartes/Space Marines, terminology, universe, etc © Games Workshop
text/chars © =KreepingSpawn
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  I will keep you safe.

  I will keep you company.

  Do you remember all those years ago – when we first met? I remember it perfectly. I was so very close. So very, very close to my last shred of sanity snipping. And then I saw a peculiar little girl in white dress – you. Your left hand was occupied by a tattered doll. Your right was wet from wiping your tears. Your eyes began to water again, but I caught it for you that time. I still had a shred of humanity left, gnawing at my heart's strings to care for you, to pity, and to comfort. You were scared by my face, but I mustered a smile, and told you not to fear. You told me that you were lonely, that you were unloved.

  And from that point on, I never left your side.

  Do you remember all those years ago – when I saved your life? I remember it perfectly. The cursed fellow had threatened you, and I had intervened. You were bigger, but still, I needed to protect you. He chased you up the tower, calling you a monster, saying you needed to disappear. And then he drew his rapier. I had never moved faster in my life than I did grabbing that awful man by the brim of his ebony vestment. I had never acted as instinctively as I led him to the window. I had never whispered as softly as I did to you of reassuring, and to him of the pain of death. I had never been more deafened than by his scream as I cast him away.

  Take away upon your black wings, bishop, for your mistress commands it.

 Do you remember all those years ago – when you saw my face for the first time? I remember it perfectly. Soul of black I had retrieved, and offered it to the gentle flame I did. My flesh was deep and wrinkled no more. I turned to you, and you seemed shocked at my form. You were my height, and we were both exceedingly young. I could even remember a flicker of attraction…but no. I refused desire. My love for you was of parent to child, or of sibling to sister. And it was good that I refused, for you grew, oh so very fast. Soon, you towered above me, and regardless, I still guarded you with my life.

  I made a promise to you, Priscilla. I promised that I would never let you see darkness.

  Do you remember that short time ago – when the people gathered? I remember it perfectly. Ariamis gathered, and desired your pure blood. How shocked I was. How scared you were. They hurried to the theatre, where you and I often met. How ready I was. How well-hid you were. The crowd broke through, and I met them head-on. How ravenous I was. How aghast you were. Ariamis fell to my feet. How alive I was. How frightened you were. After I finished, I ran to you, and embraced you.

  I fell the entire city as the ax man does the forest. I was invincible.

  You would be safe forever.

  Do you remember that short time ago – when I found the red rock? I remember it perfectly. I had slain anyone that came near you. Everyone was a threat, as everyone was present at the theatre that fateful night. And then you began to cry, for you were lonely again. I did everything I could to comfort you. Yet you ran from me, from your sole friend, terrified. So I brought new friends. I tempted those with Lifedrain to pursue me, as their master tempted them with the very art they wielded. I brought many new friends for you to meet.

  I will do anything in my power to keep you safe, Priscilla.

  Do you remember the fall of Ariamis? I remember it perfectly. The city crumbled under the assault of the Crimson Ones. All through the onslaught, you sought me. You found me in the theatre, and I greeted you merrily. But then you turned your blade on me. Your beautiful scythe sliced the air beside my head flawlessly. I was blank. My only friend wanted me dead. I begged you to stop as I evaded cut after cut. You screamed at me, calling me a monster. You claimed I was nicer when I looked to be a monster. You called all humans monsters. And then I held my weapon to receive a blow from the elegant scythe.

  And that was perhaps the greatest mistake I ever made.

  Your immense size…It threw me an admirable distance.

  And then, you hooked your foot under my torso, and threw me off the edge with it.

  When I finally landed, tears fell from my eyes as I felt my body fade, and the fiery ring burn brighter…

  …I am back, Priscilla. I have come to fulfill my promise to you…

  …As long as it is within my power...

  …You will never see the Age of Dark…

  …My dear friend.
A short story about the Painted World of Ariamis, and it's fascinating inhabitant, Crossbreed Priscilla.

I say "fascinating" because unlike other bosses in Dark Souls, Priscilla lets you walk away without a scratch, only if you return the favor. Therefore, I made a little connection to the character and Priscilla.

*NOTE: This is in no way real Lore. Only a theory that was expanded into a writing.*
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"Should we all go?" Splash asked.

"No, that'd be too dangerous." Vex sighed, he looked at Arya and then her body, Arya gave him a look and Vex caught it.

"No, no, maybe you should go because you're smaller." Vex suggested and Splash scoffed.

"But she's a female!"

"That doesn't matter. She's smaller so she has less a chance of being seen and-," Vex started but Splash cut him off.

"I don't care if she's smaller! I'm smarter!" Splash hissed.

"If zombies go after her, she probably has a chance of slipping between small spaces and getting away. Or even hiding." Vex hissed and Splash folded his arms.


Arya opened the back of the truck, the streets were deserted and a few of the shops windows had been smashed open. Vex handed her a large bag, "Just incase you find anything. Just get things that you think we'd need."

She slipped out of the truck with her bow in hand and the bag strapped to her back. Vex and Splash watched her as she pushed open the stores door gently and slid inside.


Arya ducked low as she began piling items into the bag, not really caring about labels or what they were for. The bag was about a third full when she heard noises coming from the back of the store.

She set the bag down and had her bow poised as she neared the noises. There was a loud smash and a gurgle that made Arya's skin crawl, she closed her eyes once and then rounded the corner, her eyes drew wide as she saw a zombies head get smashed in right in front of her eyes. Blood splattered over her face and her body froze.

A gun was suddenly pointed towards Arya's head, her brain shouted commands to the rest of her body but she was just unable to move.

"Blimey, you scared me half to death. I thought you were another one of those things." When the gun was lowered, she realized that she'd been holding her breath and Arya looked to the owner of that gun.

He wasn't much older than herself, his hair was black and reached his collarbones, he had shark bite piercings and she could just see some tattoos down his arms under his t-shirt.

"Get that thing out of my face. Hello?" He placed his hand on Arya's shoulder and dodged past her bow, she lowered it slowly and watched the guy.

"What are you doing here? I thought everybody would've made a run for it." He questioned but Arya was just frozen in place.

"I-I-," Arya stuttered and then the guy threw a rag at her.

"You've got blood all over your face." Arya set her bow down slowly and wiped the rag over her face, she peeked at the mysterious guy as he grabbed a few things off of shelves.

"I was getting supplies for my group, they're waiting for me out there. I was packing things when I heard noises so I went to investigate." Arya gasped.

"Be glad I didn't pull the trigger." He said, "My names Brutal, how about you?"


"Sweet." Brutal said, he continued grabbing things and Arya moved back over to her bag.

She shoved more things in there and then looked out the window for zombies.

"Hey! I have no ride out of here and no one else-," Brutal called from behind a shelf and Arya sighed, "You could tag along with us, just come outside and I'll speak with the rest."

She took long strides towards the truck and handed Vex the bag who was waiting patiently, "I found someone else in there, he nearly shot me in the face but he's a pretty decent guy, he's coming out now."

"He nearly shot you in the face and yet… he's a pretty decent guy?" Splash laughed and jumped out of the truck beside Arya as Brutal left the store with a bag of his own.

"Yeah, I invited him to come along." Arya raised her eyebrows as Vex jumped out too.

"Hey." Brutal nodded towards Splash and then Vex, Splash's eyes darted from Brutal's head to toe as he studied him intently.

"What's your name?" Vex asked.

"You can call me Brutal, you?" Brutal held out his hand.

"Vex." Vex shook Brutal's hand and then looked at Splash who still had his eyes glued on Brutal.

"How about you?" Brutal looked at Splash.

He didn't reply, his mouth was skewered into a tight line and his eyes were cold.

"He's Splash." Arya sighed, she jumped up into the back of the truck.

"Why do you call yourself Brutal? What's your real name?" Vex asked.

"It was my nickname on xbox live. I'd prefer that you didn't know my real name." Brutal sighed.

"That's okay." Arya assured, she sat down in the truck and rested her head in her hands. "Are you okay?" Vex asked her.

"Yes, I just have a headache and…" She whimpered as images of her father being torn apart by the hungry dead rushed through her head, she punched the floor of the truck and the cool metal vibrated beneath her.

"I did nothing to save him!" She cried.

"Save who? What?" Vex jumped up next to her and rested a steady hand on her shaking shoulder as Splash and Brutal watched on in confusion.

"My father. He was screaming for me to help him and I did nothing!"

"Sh, it's okay." Vex sat next to her and put an arm around her shoulders. "Splash, Brutal, take one of these bags and gather some more supplies from any of the shops." He added.

Splash groaned and he grabbed the bag, "We wont take too long." He hissed.

Brutal shrugged his shoulders and followed Splash into a small abandoned shop across the road.

"Now, that isn't your fault. If you did jump in and save him, you could've been killed." Vex squeezed Arya's shoulders and she looked up at him through thick strands of her hair.

"I shouldn't feel so guilty for that slob, but I just can't help it!" She cried; Vex hushed her.

"I know, I know." Vex cradled her as if she were a small child, she cried into his shirt and her hands clenched the fabric on his back.

"It'll pass." He hushed again.

"He was such a bad father to me, he used to beat me if I didn't complete things up to his standards." Arya whispered.

"Then you shouldn't feel guilty, Arya, I know this sounds bad, but he deserved to be torn apart, every single inch of pain he felt, he deserved it for what he used to do to you. But you don't have to worry anymore, he wont lay a finger on you." Vex hugged her and then pushed her back to look at her face.

"Trust me, my mother used to beat my younger sister when I still lived at home. I wanted to smash her face against a wall. I hope to god that she got what she deserved." Vex looked into Arya's eyes with his own and he grabbed her chin.

"I'll protect you, Arya." He promised.

She gave a half smile and he stood up, he smiled down at her before jumping from the back of the truck and moving to where the others had gone.

Arya stayed put and she wiped her eyes with her sleeve, she was about to move to sit in the passenger seat but something caught her eye.

Her head darted to the side and she gasped in horror, lumbering around the corner, was a giant mob of zombies.

And they were headed straight for the store that the boys had disappeared into.
Autumn is now Arya.
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I've noticed a trend of having dictator/world-ruler/people in a position of power characters. Normally, I find these types of characters fascinating - I love hearing the minutiae of how they keep their regime in control, the cults of personality they develop, their rise and their fall ... it's one of the reasons I love 1984 so much; is Big Brother real? Did he even exist in the first place? Who is the real leader of Oceania? Unfortunately, I've begun to see it addressed shoddily and without much thought, so I decided to make a guide of sorts (more like a glorified checklist) for anyone who is curious on how to develop their dictatorial character, and to make them realistic.

1. Why do they want power?

I have seen this written away with, "because they want to control everyone", which is true to an extent with many historical figures who were dictators, and also fictional characters. However, this often goes much deeper than "wanting to control everyone" or "they're mad, I tell you! MAD!". What are their reasons to act this way? Why did they seize power? I'm pretty sure the majority of us wouldn't mind being waited upon hand on foot as we see the territories we own slowly expanding under the steady march of one hundred-thousand booted feet. The difference is, most of us see this as purely fanciful, a bureaucratic nightmare, and just plain stupid.

Yes, I know generally, this is true, but is normally hidden by other reasons, the most common one being, "I want to make the world a better place. I will build a utopia". This simple idea can be expanded wonderfully - what exactly does your character dislike about the world at the minute? A broad spectrum of ideas can be considered - is it poverty? Ideological differences which keep people from getting along? The current government's policies? Obviously, these are very simple, and can once again be expanded - what caused the poverty, has it directly affected your character? Why are there radical idealogical differences, does your character hold fast to one particular idea? Do many people like the current government, are they ineffectual, are they too effective?

Worried you don't know enough about either politics or history to work this out neatly? Well, learn! You'll find it much more satisfying to be able to fill in plot holes you'd left before, and find it gives your character more personality. You can link them more personally to their regime, things will make more sense, their past can be expanded - what started this desire, why did they choose to act on it?

2. How will they gain power?

This next point is linked in closely to the first - how will takeover be achieved? I've seen a lot of, "oh, they just walk up and kill the previous government", but in reality, this step up is often hard worked for (over several years, maybe even decades), and much more subtle. Of course, former leaders have been murdered for the new position, but it still has to be worked for - do they have allies in the right places? What do the public think of them? Would people be desperate or willing enough to follow?

Generally, for a big political change like this to happen, an equally large catalyst is needed - for example, the famine of 1889 in Russia could be argued to have started the rumbling that lead to the Revolution in the 1910s. A lot of characters I see don't have such developed worlds in which they inhabit - the loopholes that allow them to gain support aren't specified, or make little to no sense. Was there a crucial international affair handled terribly by the government, perhaps, or a history of only a privileged few being treated well?

Hitler didn't just storm in and become Führer, Mao didn't just walk in and tell the whole of China that they would be going from aristocratic rule to Communism; these things take planning, often years of being patient and gathering followers have to precede becoming the leader. I don't care how powerful your character is, I don't care if his only weakness is glitter, he is not going to become leader by (presumably) charging in and going "I rule, now!". Which neatly brings me to my next point.

3. The Cult of Personality fail

Another thing I notice is barely touched on, or completely messed up. Yes, your character can be an unpleasant person - they can be short tempered, arrogant, and childish, but unless they project an image of benevolence and care for their citizens, there will be widespread political unrest. Look at propaganda used by real life dictatorships - the leader is often presented as unable to do wrong, or even godlike - they may be pictured as almost Jesus-like saviours of their people, maybe shown as omniscient - in 1984, Big Brother is said to see whatever you do, and as you can tell from Winston's distress, many think he can know the thoughts of his subjects, even though he obviously can't.

How does your character present themselves when in public? As a passionate warrior for their people, or a generous and kind-hearted aide? Do they stay out of the public eye, feigning immortality long after they die, or do they live in it, kiss babies, and embrace adults? And what about out of the public eye? How do they cope with the stress of keeping an entire nation in adoration?

Read this short article on the Cult of Personality, and see how Stalin is presented; compare this to your character, or character in progress -…

4. How do they hold their position of power?

The Nazi Gestapo, the Hungarian AVH, the Soviet KGB, all were used to simultaneously terrify and control the citizens. I don't see these types of organisations too much around the types of character this article was written to help improve. Once again, this tends to hinge around world building more than anything. Sometimes a vague secret police is mentioned and then handwaved away, but is never again felt, there never seems to be fear hanging heavily on the shoulders of the characters, they're just brought in where the plot calls for it, and are often nameless, faceless, and we have no idea what they actually do. Why are people so scared? I know sometimes less is more, but still, vague ideas as to what they do should be addressed.

How does your dictator remove potential opposition? Through careful political manouvering, quiet assassination, or blatant murder? How do they crush revolution? Do they outright kill dissenters, or do they turn revolutionaries against each other. Do they prevent it by drugging the water, through propaganda depicting rebels as inhuman, wanting only to tear families apart?

This point links in very neatly with the Cult of Personality - if you develop one well, the other comes much easier. Both are great opportunities to show your character cracking down on what their people do, to show their nastier side.

5. What will they do in power?

Once again, there are a lot of characters I have seen that do nothing in power, apart from maybe gain new lands (without the stresses of war) or have statues of themselves built. There is little to no detail on home affairs, diplomatic relations with other countries/nations, or even smaller things such as healthcare or tax. What are their policies? What do they tell their people they'll improve upon or change? Once again, this may seem intimidating if you don't know much about politics, but it can be easily sorted out, and adds more flesh to the world and your character, tells the reader of their personal beliefs.

Look at the policies historical dictators have stood for, other than war or their own gain. How did they carry on convincing their people everything is done for the country? How did they deal with war? How will your character? Will they go with diplomacy and creating allies, or fighting other countries into submission? How will they deal with the economic strains of war?

6. One-sided characters.

Something I have noticed happening with 'evil' characters in a position of power, is that they don't really do all that much evil. Take Galbatorix from the Inheritance Cycle as an example - what has he done that is so awful? We're told something vague about taxes being high, but Eragon's supposedly poor family can eat chicken for breakfast and have spending money at a fair. We're never really shown what he does that's so awful - for all we know, the Varden could be a terrorist organisation, whilst Galbatorix raises taxes to give his subjects a higher standard of living.

Another simplified version of "they're evil" I often see is something like this -
My character is evil and awful and a bad person.
They kill babies.
Because they're evil and awful and a bad person.

It's very rare this is expanded upon. Very few reasons are given for atrocities. Even something as simple as paranoia could work, but is very rarely mentioned.
We don't often see another side to the character, just the stereotypical cold bad boy, occasionally. We never see how they act with family, or friends, or if they're actually a decent person with twisted ideals. Someone can still be pleasant and a bad person, in the same way someone can be moody and a good person. People who don't develop their characters very well often stick with making the bad guy a one-sided 'bad' character because it's much easier than giving them a personality, dreams, hopes, goals and quirks that can also be associated with a 'good' character.

In conclusion, I hope that this guide helps people with characters they want to make a bit more solid and realistic.
A guide to making decent ~ruler~ characters, because people fuck what could be interesting characters far too often.
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i watched a man speak once. he told of the stars, planets, and people- and how they all came to being. some people say a picture is worth a thousand words, but no one ever gives the worth of words that create images. he created images of blackness- of a non-existent identity.
he told me about the birth and made very clear that it was the only beginning that ever really existed. he said, "the creation of something is the start- and nothing happens before the start. there is no god to shoot a gun or shout, 'go'". there was no time- and time is really the only living thing to this very day.

my head collapses inwards- my eyes explode with small white lights and swirling colors.

i have seen people wearing beige sweaters and carrying meaningless charts, and they always seem to win at life. i see you become one of these people- your dreams are rotten, and your hope is only there as a survival tactic. i used to think that i knew you, and you told me what you thought right.

you spoke about life as if you knew something- even though you are just a privileged girl that always gets that which she asks for. you know not of feelings- only of notions; of ideas. you have shriveled even further and yet you do not feel the pain of understanding.

you are sitting on the pavement and your shoes are by your side. you act as if you are carefree, when really you are afraid of losing. you know not that the scared always win in this twisted world- that the weak always triumph because they are given unnecessary aid. you sit there clutching onto your worn out sneakers that hold so many memories; so many adventures, and all you see is a ticking clock, moving closer and closer to the unwanted destination.

i nearly reached out and held you once- i nearly put my arm around your shoulder and held you to my chest telling you, "it will be all right," but i never had half the heart to lie to you, and i know you are a hopelessly old stain on an otherwise pure white sheet.

i have always been afraid of dying- afraid of missing things. it seems to me that you are afraid of living. you do not pray to a god because prayer is always sincere, and you have never been sincere in anything but pity.

i have looked into your eyes and seen shame and guilt, because the good intentions never got off land. you will remain grounded forever, i hope, because maybe after several lifetimes you will learn to appreciate that which not everyone has- time.

the galaxies are contained in my irises- and with them the absence of god.
she never really knew that i saw her weakness- that she didn't need to tell me. what she didn't know is that i chose to overlook those weaknesses, because one can only pity so many people.

preview image by oO-Rein-Oo
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Luffy vs. Popeye by Dimension-Dino

Ray: Alright, the combatants are set. Let’s settle this debate once and for all.

Steel: It’s time for a DEATH BATTLE!!!


All was calm as a massive galleon cruised across the ocean's surface, its lion-head bowsprit and straw-hat wearing Jolly Roger noticeable anywhere. From its deck, one could hear merry music from a fiddle, and the members of the crew either singing or dancing along to it.

Joining them in the festivities was the captain of this ship known to all as "Thousand Sunny". That captain was none other than the famed Straw-Hat Luffy.

The song came to an end and the skeletal fiddler took a bow, his art complete. If he had a proper face, he would have smiled at the cheers.

“WOW!” Luffy said with a broad smile, “Play it again!”

Yet as the crew celebrated, a simple-looking steamboat was coming across their path up ahead. At first, the crew paid no mind to it. That all changed because, just when the skeleton was about to draw his bow across the strings of his instrument, another tune cut across him, catching the immediate attention of the ship's captain.

The song in the distance sounded a little something like this...

I'm Popeye the Sailor Man
Popeye the Sailor Man
I'm strong to the finich,
‘cause I eats me spinach
I'm Popeye the Sailor Man

I'm one tough Gazookus, which hates all Palookas.
Wot ain't on the up and square.
I biffs 'em and buffs 'em and always out roughs 'em
but none of 'em gets nowhere.

If anyone dares-es to risk me fist,
It's "Boff" an' it's "Wham" un'erstan'?
So keep "Good Be-hav-or", That's your one life saver
With Popeye the Sailor Man.

I'm Popeye the Sailor Man
Popeye the Sailor Man.
I'm strong to the finich,
‘cause I eats me spinach.
I'm Popeye the Sailor Man!

Luffy growled in frustration. Not only did he not like the music (for reasons beyond even the most brilliant mind in the world), but it had cut off a perfectly good song from Brook.

“HEY!” Luffy shouted, hoping the owner of the boat would hear him, “You’re interrupting our music!”

On receiving no response, Luffy was prepared to put an end to it personally. One of his crew, a gorgeous redheaded woman, seemed to sense this.

“Oh no,” Nami said, shaking her head furiously, “Don’t even think about it. Just leave the ship alone, it’s not even attacking or bothering us!”

Too late. Luffy had pulled back a fist and sent it rocketing at the ship, creating a massive hole in its side. It slowed and then slowly began to sink.

On the sinking ship’s deck, the man singing the song was not amused. His surprisingly-twisted face twisted even more as he looked around for what had caused his vessel damage. Popeye squinted and then spotted it: a massive galleon, the only one around for miles.

“Why those no good, stinkin’ pirates! I needs to teach ‘em a lesson they won’ts forget!” Popeye growled, then dove into the sea and swam towards the ship.

Back on the Thousand Sunny, Luffy nodded with satisfaction. “Good. I hated those guys.”

“Wha?! You didn’t even know them!” Nami snapped, trying not to scream at her captain. Sometimes what went through his mind was beyond any of his crew.

Something tapped him on the shoulder and Luffy turned around…only to have a fist nail him in the chin. The resulting impact sent him careening into the air and he sailed in a massive arc to land with a “thud” and a dust cloud on an island off in the distance.

“Don’t get yer hopes up, kid, ‘cuz I ain’t through with ya!” Popeye added, then dove back into the sea and swam after him.

Nami was shocked at what she had seen. She had been through some crazy stuff, but this was new even to her.


Luffy pulled himself out of the sandy shore of the island and looked around. “Where am I? And what just happened? Last thing I remember is this fist coming into my face…”

“Hey! You!”

Luffy turned to see Popeye storming towards him, stopping a few yards away, his fists clenched. Not quite sure what to make of this guy, Luffy tilted his head to the side curiously.

“Who are you?” the Straw-Hat captain asked.

“I’m Popeye the Sailor man.” Popeye answered, tooting his pipe like a whistle twice, then asked, “Who are you?”

“My name is Luffy, and I’m gonna be the King of the Pirates.” Luffy answered with a smile.

“Pirate,huh?Guessitmakessensewhyhesunkmyboat…” Popeye muttered (without even moving his lips at that), then returned to his normal voice, “Well, for wreckin’ my boat, I gotta hurt ya, kid.”

“You wanna fight?” Luffy asked, then put up a fist and smiled again, “Well, bring it on! I don’t plan on dying today!”

“Bring it on, ya little squirt! It’s time for me to roughs ya up!” Popeye said, hunching forward ready for battle.

The time had come for a showdown for the world’s most powerful pirate and the most powerful sailor: a battle to determine the King of the Seas.


“Gum-Gum…” Luffy pulled back a fist, then threw it at Popeye on an elongated arm, “Pistol!”

The fist flew forward like a bullet and Popeye only just managed to sidestep it. As Luffy retracted his arm, Popeye actually followed it, pulled back a fist of his own and slammed it into Luffy’s visage.

Luffy’s neck stretched backward, taking his head with it and snapped back into place…only to meet Popeye’s fist yet again, resulting in the same event again, and again, and again in a comedic fashion.

Luffy had had enough and, the next time his head stretched back on his neck, he saw a nearby palm tree, opened his mouth, and latched his teeth into its bark. After a moment of tension, in which Popeye wondered just why Luffy’s head wasn’t coming back for a good “biffin’ and boffin’” as he put it, Luffy’s body shot backward so fast that it seemed to teleport.

Luffy let the recoil of his body returning wear off, then launched his rubbery fist at Popeye again. Popeye evaded yet again, but this was not Luffy’s intention. He actually opened his hand to latch onto a boulder behind Popeye, pulled himself back a bit, then let go.

“Gum-Gum…” Luffy said, extending his free arm, “SICKLE!” Popeye’s eyes widened as Luffy’s arm slammed into his neck at high speed, sending Popeye into the rock behind him.

Popeye hit the rock with enough force to leave an imprint of himself, yet the groan he emitted as he peeled off it gave an indication that he survived. Luffy was not going to let up, though, and latched onto Popeye, his rubbery arms and legs wrapping around the cockeyed sailor’s limbs.

“Gum-Gum…” Luffy said, pulling back his head, stretching his elastic neck to gain momentum, “BELL!”

Moments before Luffy’s head rocketed back, Popeye had an idea. He pulled back his own head (not as far as Luffy’s, though) and the two craniums collided. The vibrations form the impact coursed through both of their bodies and, while Luffy didn’t complain in the slightest, all Popeye did was grumble at the pain…and showed no sign of injury.

“Okay, ya little runt, how’s about I heat things up?” Popeye said, then turned his corncob pipe upside down, took a deep breath, then blew into the pipe.

Rather than emit a huge cloud of smoke, the corncob pipe emitted a small flame akin to a welding torch. The flame jetted out, striking Luffy right on the shirt. The part that was struck quickly burst into flame and Luffy, with a yelp, sprang off and began trying to put it out.

Popeye shook himself loose, then charged Luffy and sprang into the unlikeliest place one would imagine: right under Luffy’s shirt…where he seemed to disappear. Luffy stared, wide-eyed, at what the sailor accomplished and searched under his article of clothing wildly for his opponent, yet he was nowhere to be seen.

Tap, tap…

Luffy turned to his right, feeling someone tap him on the shoulder…and was met with a fist to his face from a familiar, anchor-tattooed arm. Mentioned arm then retreated back to where it came from: just under the right part of his collar. Luffy grabbed at it, but only found empty space. Yet, as he pulled back after grabbing thin air, the same muscular arm popped out from under his sleeve and pinched his nose, as though honking a bike horn.

After a split-second of surprise, Luffy quickly got the idea and grabbed the arm. “A-ha! I gotcha!” he exclaimed in triumph.

“Oh, no ya don’t.” Popeye replied from inside Luffy’s shirt, “I’ve got YOU.”

Luffy raised a brow, then attempted to pull the legendary sailor out of his shirt. One could imagine his shock, though, when he stopped for a second and an even stronger force pulled his arm further down his shirt. Luffy gritted his teeth and pulled with all his might, yet couldn’t dislodge Popeye.

Luffy’s straining halted when, suddenly, he lost his grip on Popeye’s wrist like he was holding a greased eel and, comically, fell flat out on his back from the change of force. Popeye hopped out, then prepared to sock it to Luffy from above only to see his rubbery adversary roll backward and stretch both his arms behind him.


At the peak of their back-stretch, both of Luffy’s hands sprang forward and slammed into Popeye’s midsection. The sailor bent forward, the wind getting blasted from his lungs, then rocketed backward into the lightly-wooded area further inland.

Popeye landed, noggin-first, into the trunk of a palm tree then fell to the ground like a plank of wood being dropped. He picked himself up, then jumped slightly as a pair of hands grabbed a pair of trees not far from him.

“Gum-Gum ROCKET!!!”

Popeye wound up a punch just as the arms retracted, slinging Luffy at Popeye like a bullet. Before Luffy came too close, a fist planted itself firmly into his chin. Luffy flew up in an arc before falling back to the ground, his still-elongated arms comically falling onto him in a rubbery heap.

Luffy freed himself of the tangled mess of his arms, then pulled back his right leg like he was ready to kick a soccer ball. “Gum-Gum STAMP!” When Luffy threw his leg forward, everything from the calf down extended forward like a spear, Luffy’s sandal-clad foot nailing Popeye right in the chest.

Popeye’s back slammed into a rock and, when he looked down, he saw a very distinctive footprint in his chest. After mumbling something about how expensive it would be to get removed, he jumped into the air and came back down, spinning in a reverse-pirouette to drill into the ground below him.

Luffy stared, wide-eyed in wonder, at what Popeye had just accomplished. “WOW! What kind of fruit did he eat?” he asked in astonishment.
Luffy felt something coming, then hopped out of the way just as Popeye burst from the ground beneath him. Popeye’s fist hit air as he sprang out, leaving him open.

“Gum-Gum SHOTGUN!” Luffy said, throwing out a fist, then twanging it. It looked like multiple fists had struck from just one arm.

Popeye merely reached out and seized Luffy around the wrist, halting the twanging. “You’re a slick one, rubber-boy, but let’s have us a little fun now.” With that said, Popeye raised Luffy’s arm, then brought it sharply back down like a whip, sending a wave right down the length of the arm.

The resulting force flipped Luffy on his back with a yelp in surprise. The next moment, he was tugged right at Popeye, who proceeded to twirl Luffy around like a lasso (even going to the liberty of performing a few tricks worthy of wild-west cowboys) and tossing him away.

Luffy landed, cat-footed, on his feet and made the conclusion that, in his current condition, he wasn’t going to win. He closed his eyes in focus, then snapped them open as steam began to flow from his legs. In the blink of an eye, he was right in front of Popeye and before the mighty sailor could comprehend it.

“Gum-Gum Jet Stamp!”

Popeye rocketed backward, his eyes not even catching just what had happened. All he knew was that he felt like he had been hit full in the chest by a charging train. As he tumbled to a halt, he only had time to get up before he caught sight of something.

His corncob pipe almost fell out of his mouth as a giant fist, comparable in size to a massive tree trunk, raised itself high into the air. “Gum-Gum GIANT PISTOL!”

Popeye yelped in surprise, then ran as fast as he could to the side just as the giant fist flew at him. The fist smashed through the ground like it was cheap glass, then retracted. Popeye took quick advantage of his opponent’s need to retract and, as the giant arm deflated and retracted back to its owner, Popeye held on tightly, hitching a ride to his rubbery opponent.

Popeye hopped off the appendage as soon as Luffy was in sight, then threw a flurry of punches at Luffy. Much to his frustration, Luffy sidestepped each attack as if he knew it was coming.

Luffy decided to put an end to Popeye’s assault and shouted, “Gum-Gum BALLOON!” With that, Luffy’s entire torso inflated into a giant, flesh-colored ball. The minute Popeye’s fist made contact with it, it bounced off. The recoil sent Popeye stumbling backward, and Luffy seized his chance.

“Gum-Gum JET GATLING!” Luffy leaned forward and his arms were suddenly a blur that began to pummel Popeye, who could only put up his arms to shield himself…if only a little bit.

“I can’t stands no more!” Popeye managed to get out before the punches broke past his defense and sent him flying backward.

Popeye skidded to a halt and now knew that, if there ever was a situation for his trump card, that situation was “NOW”. “Alright, you got a few circus acts. Guess what? I gots a few, too.” Popeye said, ready to meet this challenge with one of his own.

Popeye reached into his abnormally-deep pants pocket and pulled out a large tin can labeled “Spinach”. He gave the can a good squeeze until it burst open at the top, its green contents flying into the air. It came back down right into Popeye’s gaping mouth.

After munching down on the spinach for a brief moment, Popeye swallowed and the effects of eating his greens were instantaneous. His whole body flowed with a new energy and he flexed his muscle, forcing a bicep up to preposterous levels.

As for the metaphorical image you see in that muscle every time Popeye eats spinach? It was Goku firing off a Kamehameha.

Anyhoo, Popeye saw a pair of hands had reached just behind him and seize two trees behind him and had a good idea as to what was coming. He braced himself, his whole body composition morphing to resemble a Popeye statue made entirely of brick.

“Gum-Gum Jet Rocket!”

Luffy collided with Popeye at sonic-speeds, intent on finishing him off here and now with a powerful headbutt. One could imagine his surprise when, rather than send Popeye into agony and/or death, he ricocheted off with a bell-like “dong”. Popeye seemed completely unscathed while Luffy lay on his back, clutching his now-aching skull.

It was truly odd to him. Most of Popeye’s previous blows hadn’t even hurt him at all, yet he just now withstood one of Luffy’s stronger attacks AND did something that managed to hurt him.

Luffy roared back to his feet and unleashed another “Gum-Gum Jet Gatling” on Popeye, hoping to pummel him again. Popeye’s response was to wind up both of his fists and actually MIRROR him. The sailor man’s fists were now also blurs and met Luffy fist-for-fist.

Luffy, now really starting to get ticked that this guy was matching him, pulled back his fists and called off the attack. He then twisted his right arm like a corkscrew and shouted “Gum-Gum JET RIFLE!”

The Jet Rifle flew at Popeye…who merely reached up and caught his fist without wavering. The energy behind the arm’s now-spiraling form was suddenly released, resulting in Luffy spinning around like a propeller before sailing off to his right when Popeye let go.

Luffy landed on his feet, then forced as much air into his arms as he could. “Gum-Gum GIANT GATLING!”

Popeye put both of his thumbs in his mouth, took a deep breath, then actually mirrored Luffy again. In seconds, both his anchor-tattooed arms were the same size as Luffy’s. Again, Popeye had the Strawhat Captain matched move-for-move.

Then Popeye opened one of his hands and caught Luffy’s own by the wrist. With a “flick”, Luffy was catapulted high into the air before slamming back down on the ground. Next thing he knew, he was jerked towards Popeye and before he could put up any adequate defense, Popeye’s other gigantic fist slammed into him.

The resulting impact sent Luffy tumbling across the ground, skidding to a halt on a sandy beach. If his Gears wouldn’t work, then he’d have to use his ultimate techniques. It was time for using some Armament Haki.

Luffy stretched back an arm, the area from his fist down to his forearm turning the color of a cannonball, then shouted “Gum-Gum BULLET!”

Both of Popeye’s eyes widened as a pitch-black fist slammed into his visage, sending him rocketing into the air. Yet, as Popeye flew above the treetops, he was readying a counterattack. He twirled his pipe around until it faced his feet, took a deep breath, then exhaled out his smoking utensil as hard as he could.

A jet of flame erupted from the rather small object and, within seconds, Popeye had halted his backward-going momentum and flew forward like a rocket. Luffy shrieked in surprise as Popeye came at him with a barrage of punches to the pirate’s face. Normally, this would be no threat, but the Observation Haki seemed oddly ineffective. This was because of Luffy being completely caught by surprise and the fact that Popeye (and every punch he threw) was, somehow, moving far too fast for that particular form to be effective. Worse still, just like the last time, Popeye was somehow managing to hurt Luffy with pure blunt force alone…without Haki, no less.

Popeye only halted his barrage of punches only to sock Luffy full into the air with a sharp uppercut. While waiting for Luffy to come down, Popeye took his right wrist in his left hand and twisted his whole arm until it resembled a large piece of rope. Then, as Luffy came down, he slammed it into the pirate captain’s midsection, pinning Luffy to a tree. As an added effect, his twisted arm untwisted, spinning Luffy fast enough to buff the bark off the tree…and eventually splinter it under the force.

Luffy hit the ground, but was back on his feet, fuming with rage. “Gum-Gum…” Luffy’s fist grew to giant proportions yet again, only this time it was pitch-black with the Armament Haki, “ELEPHANT PISTOL!” With that exclamation, Luffy threw his fist forward. He'd like to see the anchor-armed sailor top THIS.

Popeye spotted the giant, obsidian hand coming at him like a gigantic cannonball, ready to blow him away, yet did not attempt to move out of the way in the slightest. He wound up a fist, spinning it fast enough that it could have been a propeller. When he was fully wound up, and Luffy’s fist was inches away from splattering him all over the island, Popeye launched his fist forward, making contact with the black surface.

A tremor went down the entire length of the arm and, for a split second, nothing appeared to have happened. Then the black surface of the arm actually cracked like an eggshell. Just a few appeared at first, then it spread and spread quickly until the Armament Haki literally shattered like glass.

The force of the impact jarred Luffy to the point that he fell on his seat. He then charged Popeye, his legs pumping him as fast as he could go. As he ran, he stretched an arm behind him that started out pitch-black, but quickly turned bright gold before being completely engulfed in flames.

“Gum-Gum REDHAWK!”

Too late.  Popeye spotted him, saw his flaming appendage, then took a deep breath and blew as hard as he could. The resulting flow of air was comparable to a hurricane wind…if it was much, MUCH stronger. Not only did the winds slow Luffy to a crawl, they also extinguished the fire on his arm like he was blowing out a birthday candle.

“Yes,birthdaywishesandall.Timetofinishyaoff,squirt.” Popeye grumbled, then socked the oncoming boy in the chin again, sending him up into the air once more.

This time, he made sure this would be the last time.

When Popeye spotted Luffy coming back down, he dug his fingers into the ground and pulled as hard as he could. At first glance, one would think that he was going to pull open a crevice in the ground.


Popeye pulled and pulled when, with a paper-like ripping sound, the very page you are reading this fight on tore right across the page. “Let’s see ya come back from THIS, ‘soon-to-be King of Pirates’.”

Luffy was just coming back down when he spotted oblivion awaiting him where he intended to land. He yelped as he fell down the crevice, then reached up with an elongated arm and just grabbed the edge of the tear.

Popeye spotted him and emitted a disgruntled growl, but then rubbed his hands together as an idea came to him. “Oh, look! Piggies!”

Popeye walked over to Luffy’s fingers, then wedged his thumb under his index finger. “This little piggy went to market…” With a “twang”, he pried the finger loose and Luffy’s eyes widened.

“Gum-Gum Pistol!” Luffy shot his other arm in an attempt to dislodge Popeye or get another grip to help himself up.

“Quit it, ya little whelp!” Popeye said, casually swatting the rubbery limb away, “I’m tryin’ to count piggies! This little piggy stayed home…” He pried Luffy’s middle finger loose.

“Gum-Gum Rocket!” Luffy said, his arm retracting, ready to spring him up and headbutt the cockeyed sailor…only to be met with the same fate as his hand.

“I said ‘cut it out’!” Popeye said, grouchily, socking Luffy back down to dangle from his last two fingers. “THIS little piggy had roast beef…” Luffy was now dangling from his pinky and could only watch in horror as Popeye said the last six words he would ever hear.

“And this little piggy had NONE.”

Popeye dislodged Luffy’s final finger and the captain of the Strawhat Pirates fell off the page into the whiteness of oblivion. His screams died down as he fell…forever.

“Hey, author! Stop bein’ so grim!” Popeye shouted, “And patch this up, will ya?”

Oh! Certainly!

At that point, a human hand with a sewing needle and thread went to work. Within a few seconds, it had patched up the page. To make sure it was safe, Popeye set foot on it: sturdy as a rock.

Popeye sighed in relief, then dove into the water. A brief moment later, he had hauled the entire wreckage of his boat out of the water and set to work repairing it.



Steel: (pause) What the heck did I just see?

Ray: I’m not entirely sure, but at least we have a winner. While Luffy is, without a doubt, one of the strongest people to have ever taken to the sea, Popeye’s savvy, cartoon-level durability, and spinach ultimately triumphed.

Steel: Luffy would not likely make the connection of Popeye’s strength and spinach (even if he DOES sing it in his song) because Popeye saves it as a last resort. Plus, the entire thing played out like a Popeye cartoon.

Ray: Luffy would make short work of Popeye when he was in base form, Gears Second and Third and his Haki would ensure that. However, when Popeye ate his spinach, his strength, speed, durability, and powers exceed that of ANY One Piece character.

Steel: How do those stats hold up? For starters, Popeye was strong enough to move the entire EARTH, which (as “Goku vs. Superman” stated) means he can lift up to 6.6 quintillion tons, exceeding just about ANY of Luffy’s feats of strength. Taking into consideration that Armament Haki can be broken with enough force, this means that Popeye is MORE than strong enough to break through it.

Ray: Popeye also once flew from the moon to Earth in under five seconds. This means that his top speed is at least Mach 13, but it IS likely that he can go faster; fast enough to fight past the effects of Observation Haki. Popeye has also dealt with supernatural entities, like ghosts and genies, so the Devil Fruits would likely mean nothing to him when spinach-fueled.

Steel: And before you bring up the Conqueror’s Haki, Popeye has both a strong will and a power level equal to, or greater than, that of Luffy’s. Crack your own Dragonball Z joke here.

Ray: Now, we can argue about feats of strength, speed, and all that. In the end, it cannot decide what either Luffy or Popeye are capable of. They’re both great heroes known for getting out of dire situations with their fists alone. The difference is their character. Luffy is not, has not, and never will be invincible. He has limits, obvious weaknesses, and his story is partly him overcoming the problems to make himself stronger. Meanwhile, Popeye’s is different. When a situation is dire, he uses something to make him capable of doing whatever needs to be done. In short, Popeye is as strong as he needs to be.

Steel: Going “Goku vs. Superman” again?

Ray: What? Look at it and tell me if it isn’t similar.

Steel: I-(pause) Wow…you’re right.

Ray: So, what happens when you pit a guy known for pushing his limits against a guy who has no real limit as to what he can or can’t do? Well, only Luffy has limits to begin with.

Steel: It was a good fight, but victory was just too much of a stretch even for Luffy. Now let's prepare to clean our inbox of all the nasty e-mails we're, undoubtedly, going to get from the One Piece fans...

Ray: The winner is Popeye.

+More than powerful enough to match Popeye in base form
+Harder to hurt as a whole
+Haki and Gears are formidable
-More exploitable weaknesses
-Even at best, cannot match spinach-fueled Popeye
-Sometimes reliant on crew/friends in dire situations (I stress the term “sometimes”)

+A force to be reckoned with, even in base form
+Just plain hard to kill
+No truly-debilitating weaknesses to be taken advantage of
+Spinach…need I say more?
+Achieves the impossible on a day-to-day basis
+More used to getting himself out of situations
The Passionate Angel

          The stars glittered across the night sky as the lunar light shined down upon Jacob and Angelica. They were sitting atop the peak of Beacon Hill on the soft, cool grass. It had grown colder since they first got there a half-hour ago which is why Jacob had his jacket wrapped around Angelica in addition to his own arms. It was silent since people rarely traveled this area which gave the couple the privacy that they so desired.
          “Stop that,” said Angelica, giggling as Jacob nibbled gently on her neck. He slowly moved up her neck, kissing her neck as he rose and began nibbling gently on her ear. “I said stop,” she said again, still giggling. Jacob stopped and let his head rest beside Angelica’s, his arms still holding her tightly in his arms. There was silence for a few seconds and then Angelica turned her head to face Jacob.
          “Why did you stop,” she asked, a smile on her face.
          “Because you told me to,” he replied, also smiling.
          “I thought you said you didn’t take orders from anyone.” She poked him gently in his stomach. “That makes you a liar.”
          “That’s something we definitely don’t want. Guess I’ll have to disobey then.” He smiled again, whispering the last part.
          “I guess so,” replied Angelica just before Jacob leaned in and kissed her gently on her lips.
“I always protect you Angelica. I promise. You’re my angel. I love you.”
Angelica looked into his eyes, placed her hand on his cheek, and smiled back. “I love you too.”

          A few minutes later, a few clouds appeared overhead and began dropping a soft rain down upon the young couple. Jacob wrapped his jacket tighter around Angelica, stood up, and slicked his hair with the rain that had already gotten it wet.
          “I should start getting you home. Don’t think you’re dad will like me much if he comes back from that business trip and finds his daughter sick in bed.”
          “Probably not,” said Angelica, laughing as she stood up. They kissed one more time and held hands as they started heading down the hill. Angelica lived only a few blocks away from the hill so the two of them had decided to walk instead of taking Jacobs car. Nobody was out wandering the streets this late expect for Jacob and Angelica, or so they thought. Halfway to Angelica’s house, a guy stepped out of an alley in front of them. When they tried to move to one side to get past, he stepped in front of them again.
          “Damn, she looks like a hot fuck,” said the man as he licked his lips.
          “What did you just say,” asked Jacob, a slight growl in his voice.
          “I said she looks like a hot fuck,” said the man again, a little louder as he pulled out a knife. “And I wouldn’t mind having a piece of that ass.”
          “Jacob,” said Angelica softly.
          “Get behind me,” said Jacob as he put himself between her and the man. “If you don’t leave us alone right now, I’m going to kick your ass.”
          “You’ll kick my ass,” laughed the man. “I tell you what, if you had her over along with all your money, we’ll let you watch while we fuck her. I’d say that’s a good deal, don’t you boys?”
          Before Jacob had a chance to respond, two more voices behind him and Angelica chimed in agreement followed shortly after by laughter. Jacob turned his body, the guy with the knife to his right and the two additional guys to his left while he kept Angelica behind him.
          “What do you say buddy? What to see your girl get fucked by three guys at one time?”
          “Jacob,” said Angelica again, tears in her eyes as she held onto him.
          “Angelica,” whispered Jacob as he kept turning to look at the guys on either side, “when I tell you to, run home as fast as you can. I’ll meet up with you there. Whatever you do, don’t come back.”
          “Don’t come back! You hear me?” Angelica nodded, the rain mixing with her own tears causing streams to now run down her face. They guys inched closer and Jacob kept looking back and forth, trying to make sure that they didn’t go ahead and rush them all at once.
          “NOW!” Jacob rushed towards the guy with the knife with Angelica at his side. He punched him square in the face, sending him backwards onto the ground. Angelica jumped over him and started running home as fast as she could without so much as looking back.
          “Son of a-” The man was quickly silenced when Jacobs fist collided with his jaw. The other two rushed over to help out their leader as Jacob picked up the knife and started fighting with it. Within minutes, the wet ground was spotted with puddles of blood.
This is actually based on a true story believe it or not. >_>
I had just gotten done with writing another chapter for a book I'm working on and I wanted to write more...but not for the book.

I was going to finish Meadow of Passion, the EdwardxBella story but it wasn't on my laptop and I didn't feel like transferring it from my storage unit. So, instead, I decided to write this one. It's one that I've been thinking about doing for a while but never had the I do ^_^.

Hope you like. There will be three parts to it so make sure to read all of it to enjoy the grand quality of it all :P.

Part 1 - [link]
Part 2 –[link]
Part 3 - [link]

[No Unauthorized third party use of this material is allowed. Written permission must be acquired.]
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1) No using the flaming battle axe as an emergency skillet
2) No dual-wielding two-handed weapons, even if I figure out how to within the rules.
3) Hengeyokai are not for making catgirls and bunny girls.
-a. And I am not allowed to fill a mansion with either or both.
4) Not allowed to use Warforged as cannon fodder with the justification "We can rebuild him!"
5) Just because I can, doesn't mean I should take Arcane Admixture so many times that Magic Missile deals nearly every damage type possible
6) My Warlock can have an Infernal Pact. He cannot be Legion and speak in the third person collective.
-a. Nor can the Warforged.
7) My Warlock will not describe his pact as having made a demon/devil/evil star/fairy/vestige his bitch.
8) If we encounter a female fox hengeyokai with a high charisma, I will refer to her by name and not constantly call her the foxy lady.
9) Zeppelins do not exist in Forgotten Realms. I am not allowed to build one from canvas and fire elementals.
-a. And if I did, it would not be used for battle or partying.
10) The Warlock is not Faust. His girlfriend is not automatically named Gretchen.
11) Rangers cannot make longbow shots from horseback. Especially by standing upright on the saddle.
12) The ranger's companion animal is not the emergency rations.
-a. Even though we can keep on resurrecting it.
13) If the elf wizard is obsessed with dragons, I cannot keep casting dragon illusions to make him shut up.
-a. Nor can I claim that random NPCs are actually dragons in disguise.
14) Cannot set the powergamers against each other.
-a. Even if it is absolutely hilarious.
15) When confronted by a fort full of alerted soldiers, making an intimidate check does not work
16) Not allowed to torch a village for the hell of it
17) Trying to break myself out of a brig is a bad idea
18) No matter how many times I ask, the DM will not let me list my alignment as Sarcastic Good
19) Cannot soak the powergamer in barbecue sauce and feed him to the dragon. Even if he deserves it
20) Cannot take weapon proficiency in torch
21) Shade vampires do not have vulnerability to torches. Not even if they're wearing black cloaks.
22) Cannot fill a Bag of Holding with lava
23) Cannot build a flamethrower from a wind elemental and alchemical fire
24) Cannot soak a fireproof object with alchemical fire for a reusable fireball. Even if it does deal more damage and can be used more often than the spell
25) When confronted with a black-cloaked figure on a hilltop, I will not immediately stab him and set him on fire
26) Cannot talk the assassins into killing their employer. Nor can I buy out their contract
27) Cannot use spells dealing radiant damage to cook. Food prepared this way is not deadly poison to evil-aligned creatures.
28) Cannot distract enemy forces with a massive tea ceremony. Can't summon succubus or nymph strippers, either.
29) The distraction cannot cost more than the actual operation.
30) Just because I can, I should not call my attacks
31) When summoning creatures, cannot shout the creature's name at the top of my voice.
32) Bardic music spells cannot be directly applied to the improvement of a stealth check
33) What checks to roll for sex is left to the DM's discretion
34) Just because the skald has high charisma and an aura, that aura is not automatically "Sexy and I Know it", "Bringing Sexy Back", or any other song extolling the singer or anybody else's sexiness.
35) I should not cast Animate Object on the fighter's sword. Even if it would boost his intelligence
36) I will not, under any circumstances, ask the female rogue if I can see all her knives.
37) Cannot cast Levitate on the barmaid's skirt. Or any other part of her.
38) Cannot pick my nose with anything bigger than my nose, no matter how well I roll
39) Cannot cast Invisibility on somebody's clothes.
40) No matter how well I roll, I cannot produce a ninja log in the middle of a hostage situation.
41) Cannot refer to the revenant Warlord as Commander Shepard
42) The changeling cannot see my deepest fears so I should refrain from calling it Pennywise.
43) The changeling's shapeshifting powers are to be used for disguise purposes only
44) Cannot cook off of the fire genasi's back. Or any other part
45) Cannot forge a flaming skillet, no matter how handy it could be.
46) If we accidentally set off the alarm, I cannot immediately turn into the largest creature possible and begin wreaking havoc.
-a. Exception: Unless this is the agreed-upon distraction
47) If I have a plot-ending power, I will use it as quickly as possible. I will NOT forget about it until after the grueling final boss fight.
48) If afflicted by friendly anti-zombie spells, I cannot ally myself with the zombies and help them kill the person responsible.
49) I cannot "accidentally" frag somebody outside of combat. Even if they totally deserved it
50) No matter how well I roll my stealth check, I cannot vanish from right in front of somebody.
-a. Spells allowing this are another  story
51) When caught flatfooted, I should not yell "Look! A distraction!" and run away. It rarely ends well and usually just annoys them more.
52) Cannot use my polearm for pole vaulting
53) Cannot leave in the middle of a fight to go brood in the Feywild
54) Cannot leave in the middle of a fight for any reason
55) Cannot summon swarms of birds, equip them with firepots, and use them as bombers. This applies to any swarm of flying creature.
-a. Even the Swarm Druid
56) Cannot refer to the Swarm Druid as the Worm that Walks
57) Changelings cannot become weapons. I should stop asking one to transform into a scythe
58) Warforged Druids shouldn't be ordered to roll out
59) Rogues in service to the Raven Queen are not fate ninjas. I should stop referring to them as such
60) If I worship Tymora, scoring with every woman I meet is not an acceptable form of worship
61) Fighters in service to the Raven Queen are not deathknights. I should stop referring to them as such
62) If I am a vampire worshiping the god of forethought, I cannot take weapon proficiency in fish
-a. Actually, I cannot take weapon proficiency in fish, period
63) Referring to the goddess of lust as the celestial stripper, while true, is frowned upon
64) The revenant does not come with build-in armor. Nor does the Warforged
65) Good-aligned Warforged do not have the Autobot symbol on their body somewhere; nor do evil-aligned Warforged have the Decepticon symbol
66) Warforged do not have to obey the Three Laws of Robotics
67) Cannot use illusion magic to "enhance" female characters' assets
-a. Outside of specific situations where it would come in handy.
--i. These situations do not occur very often
68) The Bard cannot specialize in Electric Lute
-a. Or electric anything, for that matter
69) Cannot use this list as a checklist of things to try
70) Dwarven assassins cannot use their beards as garrote wire.
71) Dwarven monks cannot make unarmed attacks with their beards.
72) The Pun Mage is not a thing.
Inspired by 2000 Things Mr. Welch Can No Longer Do in a Roleplaying Game

A bunch of jokes I came up with regarding my favorite and possibly least healthy hobby: Dungeons and Dragons. I will gladly explain stuff anybody is unclear on.

List of references (possibly incomplete):
3) Playboy and the catgirl obsession
6) The Bible and Mass Effect 2
9) One line from the Party Rock Anthem
10) The play Faust (obviously)
21) The Lord of the Rings
26) The Lord of the Rings
41) Mass Effect 2 again
42) It by Stephen King. Feel free to correct me on this one
56) HP Lovecraft. Don't ask.
57) The anime Soul Eater
58) Transformers
59) The RPG Exalted
61) Exalted again
62) The RPG Vampires: The Masquerade
65) Transformers again

Some of these are in-jokes for me, either for things I've done or seen done in sessions or things I've wanted to do:
13) I played with a guy like this. Didn't like him anyway, really didn't like him afterwards
14) This once happened at a session before I arrived, without any effort at all. Two of the other players quit it was so bad
15-17) All happened to me and my brother. At the same session. We scrapped the Evil-themed party after that
33) I asked this once, because I was very tired and thought it would be funny. Jury's out on if it should be Athletics, Acrobatics, or Endurance. Or all three
48) I threatened to do this when I played as a revenant, basically a sapient zombie

2) Deserves special mention as it was a rules exploit from D&D 3.5. There's a prestige class called Warshaper that takes a character's given shapeshifting powers and pretty much turns them into Clayface. I realized you could conceivably grow extra arms to dual-wield two-handed weapons.
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