Shop Forum More Submit  Join Login
About Deviant Lucy StoneFemale/United Kingdom Recent Activity
Deviant for 11 Years
Needs Core Membership
Statistics 248 Deviations 4,381 Comments 72,374 Pageviews
×

Newest Deviations

Literature
Epilogue 2: Sunlight and Weeds
The former owner of the cloak was four hundred miles away, grazing in a moonlit meadow, and trying to look innocent.
James liked being a stag. True, his neck always ached the next day, from supporting those antlers, but it was worth it for the sheer, wonderful simplicity of perspective.
It was like being on a broomstick. All the fears, hang-ups and heart-breaks slid off his back like an unfastened cloak, and suddenly there were just the basic principles of the chase. No 'wrong', no 'unfair' – just speed, and a silent contest to be the master of it.
These moments were so uncomplicated. He didn't have to worry about the background thud of grief – or whatever you called it when you weren't quite sure that your loved one was dead, but were bloody certain that you were angry about it.
He had no real reason – apart from his relentless optimism – for thinking she was alive. He had seen her body laid out in the Hospital Wing, before Madam Pomfrey had drawn a h
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 6 64
Literature
Epilogue 1: Statistically Significant
They called her Cinders, because that was where she was generally found. In the ashes of battle – while the ground was still smoking – she crept about without a sound, sorting the living from the dead, muttering incantations, doling out potions, taking the pain away.
Nobody really knew what she looked like. Most of the time, all you saw was a lit wand, or a soothing hand in the darkness. Some people said she was a whole team of Healers, because everyone who saw her gave a different description. Sometimes, she was Scottish; sometimes, she was Asian; sometimes she was an old woman; sometimes she was a twelve-year-old girl. Her nose was anything from 'Roman' to 'button', and her hair ran through the whole colour-spectrum, occasionally making stopovers in forget-me-not blue and bubble-gum pink.    
It was tempting to think of her as different people. But Polyjuice potion was a high-profile threat these days, thanks to the Ministry's helpful and not-at-all-pani
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 5 22
Literature
Benighted
The Slytherin common-room hadn't changed a bit. All the strange happenings and million-to-one chances that had been battering Severus over the past few days had left this room and its dreary inhabitants completely untouched.
How was it possible that they could still be here, gossiping, eating chocolate frogs, and playing noughts-and-crosses, when he had watched the Boggart die – when he'd met Salazar Slytherin – when he'd been tortured, beaten, traumatized, and then put back together in the Garden of Eden by tender, eager, beloved hands? How could the students in the Slytherin common-room be going about their business as though nothing had happened? How could they be ignoring him when he felt as though he had the remnants of all that pain and joy splattered all over his face?
But these were Gryffindor questions, and he knew it. He should never be surprised to discover that the human race was oblivious to him. He'd had enough evidence, over the years.  
Severus linge
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 5 35
Literature
Instant, Earnest, Breathless Believer
There was never going to be a time to sit back and marvel at all the impossible things he'd done and all the hopeless situations he'd lived through. There were too many more of them queuing up to ambush him. So he learned to marvel on the go. He'd never had much to marvel at before, but he was a quick-study and a natural multi-tasker. You didn't stay alive in Spinner's End by dwelling on one thing for too long. He'd seen what that kind of thing had done to his mother. If you wanted to stay alive in Spinner's End – as opposed to undead in Spinner's End – you kept your thoughts moving.
Voldemort had moved his headquarters to Rodolphus Lestrange's house – the House of Pain back in the days when it was simply the House of Mild Inconvenience. And it was eerie to be walking through these corridors again, with the tiles unsmashed, and no bodies or blood or broken glass on the floor. It was as though a team of industrious House Elves had been brought in overnight, to swee
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 7 22
Literature
Mrs Fearless Pure-blood Gryffindor
O-kaaay, thought Severus slowly, reaching out towards the tree-trunk to steady himself. The important thing now was to not think. Don't follow any of the horrific trains of thought that have suddenly opened up in front of you. Don't consider what this means for the future, and don't imagine her running into Potter as she hurries through the corridors, looking for some shred of hope or comfort –
Oh fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck.
He slid down the tree-trunk into a sitting position, and stared up at the branches, hardly daring to blink in case it provided an opportunity for his imagination to spring into action. He had to dodge all the depressing thoughts that would come flocking in now that he'd seen her running away from him. And thinking about dodging the thoughts was no good, because, sooner or later, it would involve thinking about exactly what it was he was trying not to think about.
You're not cured, and she's not coming back.
Oh fuck, fuck, fuck – oka
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 6 30
Literature
The New Young Widows' Club
The scene dissolved and then re-formed – but re-formed with such a different texture and tone that, at first, Severus thought he'd wandered into somebody else's memories. Before, the colours had been over-bright and slightly chaotic – it had been just the way Severus imagined Lily saw the world – bursting with so much light and freshness that it left you permanently, but happily, on edge.
But now he and Lily were standing in a blue-black nursery. It was daytime, but everything seemed unnaturally darkened, as though they were underwater. And, in the centre of the room – so central, in fact, that it seemed to have its own gravitational pull – was an empty cradle.
For a second, Severus wondered why the Boggart hadn't been more specific with the memories she gave them. She could have showed them the moment when they first found the baby dead – or the horrible, ham-fisted attempts to revive it that would have followed. But no. There was just an empty cradle. It
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 5 22
Literature
From Russia with Love
They went down to the beech tree beside the lake, and watched the castle cast its huge, sloping shadow over the Hogwarts grounds. It seemed ominous to Severus, but Lily had dragged him out there, and he didn't have the heart to resist her. He had so much bad news to deliver that it seemed only fair to let her pick the actual location in which it was done.
In the end – because he didn't want any interruptions, and because it seemed like a familiar, comforting situation – he perched an open book on his lap and told her to pretend he was reading to her. This turned out to be a bad idea in terms of the interruptions, because she could never stay still or quiet when he was reading to her anyway. She was always fidgeting, or thinking up questions, or leaning over his shoulder to make sure he was reading it right. Being read to was never a passive activity for Lily Evans. She couldn't resist joining in. Perhaps it was her relentless need to sympathize.
When he'd first started
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 5 26
Literature
The Potter-factor
On his way back to the Hospital Wing, Severus decided that his words, his face – his sheer existence – would aggravate Madam Pomfrey too much for any conversation between them to get past the greetings stage. She had seen him standing beside Voldemort when he killed Moribund Prince – not exactly cheering him on, but certainly not making any attempt to stop him, either. And Merlin knew what the Boggart-Lily had told her about him.
No, he would have to show her what he knew, and ensure that he was a long way away when she saw it.
Fortunately, he could give her a memory in which he didn't even speak – although all the qualities that irritated her about Severus would certainly be present – and even magnified – in the person who was doing all the talking.
He conjured a phial out of thin air, placed his wand-tip to his head, and drew out the snake-like strand of memory which represented his conversation with the Boggart-Slytherin. It
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 4 19
Literature
A Chance
Sarah Mitchell – the best St Mungo's could spare – was an unlikely-looking Healer. To begin with, her robes were so over-sized that it looked as though they'd been poured over her from above and allowed to pool around her ankles. She also had glasses, freckles, and the kind of bright, chipper, overly-familiar manner that would make any injured person wince. Severus suspected she was one of those healers who would make up cutesy names for your intimate areas, and tell you you didn't have anything she hadn't seen before, as though that was your concern.  
Still, the sight of her seemed to delight Lily, because she followed the girl around the Hospital Wing, peering over her shoulder with avid eyes, and even steadying her when she threatened to trip over her oversized robes. While Sarah Mitchell bustled about, taking pulses and embarrassing Professor Caladrius by asking him about his bowel movements, Lily asked her wide-eyed questions about St. Mungo's.
Were the
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 3 24
Literature
Still Life
Severus headed for the staff room, his mind buzzing with the kind of paranoid, repetitive thoughts you get when you've been through thirty-six hours of continuous consciousness masquerading as sleep. He was too exhausted to walk in a straight line, but the thought of lying down filled him with cold dread, because he never wanted to fall asleep again.
Now he was tired with no outlet except answers. He couldn't look forward to rest, but he could look forward to finding out what the hell was going on.
Unfortunately, there would be moments – in the not-too-distant future, although he would put them off as long as he bloody could – when he would have to tell other people what was going on. The moment when he would have to tell Lily about the bottle of memories the Boggart had left for her didn't bear thinking about. But there was also the only-slightly-less-horrendous task of telling Madam Pomfrey about Slytherin's speech, in that cave under the cliffs.
Severus was not look
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 5 21
Literature
Well Met by Moonlight
He leapt out of sleep like a salmon, torso jolting upwards and legs swinging out of bed of their own accord. He didn't manage a single step before they buckled under him, and pain completed the excruciating process of waking him up. Stupid, stupid, stupid. He'd probably been in a coma for days. How had he expected his legs to behave?
He dragged himself into a sitting position – because, wherever he was, and however close to death he'd come, he was not going to be discovered lying on the floor – especially not by Lily.  
He rubbed his eyes hard and tried to get his bearings. It was dark, and the floor underneath him was cold. For anyone else, that might have been a paucity of information but, for Severus, it was enough to work out that he wasn't in the Valance House, where he had fallen asleep. The bedrooms there were lushly carpeted, and never completely dark. Silversmith oiled his way through the rooms at night, lighting candles and torc
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 7 23
Literature
Eat Slugs
Lily knelt in the mud - with the distinct feeling that she was sinking deeper into it every second - and looked at Madam Pomfrey's marble-white face.
She knew nothing about her! She didn't know what would entice her back into the land of the living, because she had never seemed to like anything! All Lily knew about was what she hated. Irresponsible Quidditch-players who thought their bones were more replaceable than their broomsticks; students who cursed each others' noses off instead of talking. And she was dimly aware that all this was a softened version of the nauseated exasperation Poppy had felt during the war, where soldiers were sent to their deaths – their actual deaths – so that a handful of politicians could win an international argument. And then she was expected to clear up the mess.
No… not expected to. She had to. At Hogwarts, she would grumble and gripe and threaten to leave – and it was murder trying t
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 4 39
Literature
The Proper Future
Poppy stirred. It took her a long time to figure out which way was up, and why she had her forehead pressed against a piece of wood, but the answers, when she reached them, were strangely… anticlimactic.
She had fallen asleep at her desk again. Before raising her head, she ran her fingers over the woodwork, feeling for every familiar scratch and spot of flaking varnish. They were all exactly where they were supposed to be. She was exactly where she was supposed to be. And why she had the mad, momentary impression that there ought to be a word carved into the woodwork – something beginning with 'R' – she couldn't imagine. But she was never at her sharpest first thing in the morning – especially when she had spent the night with her head resting on an illustrated Dictionary of Curses. That kind of thing could seep into your brain – although it was difficult to imagine how even the most graphic nastiness could make her thoughts any darker.  
She f
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 3 27
Literature
The Phoenix and the Unicorn
The details that followed were a sight for sore eyes – and that made him even more suspicious. He kept his muscles tensed and his eyes determinedly open as the light pulled back, leaving a few familiar objects stranded like desert islands amid seas of cool, green-tinged shadows.
He was in the Slytherin common-room – or somewhere remarkably like it. It had the same high ceilings, with narrow windows clustered around the top, at what – in the outside world – was ground-level. Ivy was growing thickly over the glass, tinting the sunlight green, giving the whole room the feel of some bosky woodland grove.
It seemed right – although he wasn't going to allow that feeling of rightness to trick him into letting his guard down – that he should end up here. At one end of the journey was all that hissing, steamy chaos, and, at the other end, the Slytherin common-room, with its comfortable shadows and textured silence. Down here, the air was rarified and cool, as thoug
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 5 34
Literature
All is Full of Hate
Severus staggered through the cave under the cliff, trying to ignore the ominous creaks and shudderings that spoke of serious curses being hurled about on the cliff-top above him. He could move his legs, but his feet were unresponsive, so he dragged them under him and stumbled over them, as though he was wearing cumbersome flippers.  
There were no plans now. Putting one foot in front of the other was hard enough. His footsteps echoed in his empty head.
It was dark down here. He had lit his wand, but the air was so thick with moisture that it only illuminated a fuzzy circle around his head, like a dandelion clock. It was lucky the cave floor was so even, because he couldn't imagine his legs – or, indeed, the rest of his exhausted body – being of much use if he were to tumble into a pot-hole.
The parts of him that weren't numb with shock were imagining what Lily was doing on the cliff-top above him. His restless imagination even conjured up glowing footprints that da
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 7 30
Literature
The Right Murder
They made a strange procession, climbing up the grassy hill to the elder tree. Colonel Riddle led the way, sauntering nonchalantly, with his hands clasped behind his back. Then came Severus, with the unconscious Madam Pomfrey hanging in the air beside him. And then the widows, who were occasionally shoving their prisoner - the mud-and-coal-covered Boggart - in the back to keep her going, even though she was as docile and silent as a lamb.  
And there was someone else. Severus had only recently become aware of him – and that, in itself, was strange, because his senses were screaming with sensitivity at the moment, and he was used to being stalked by a man in a bloody invisibility cloak, so he had become phenomenally good at spotting shadows, and out-of-place noises, and all the other signs that indicated stealthy pursuit. The man who was following them must have been really good at it. He wore the shadows as though they were his own invisibility cloak.
He wa
:iconls269:ls269
:iconls269:ls269 4 26

Random Favourites

The Raven by northangel27 The Raven :iconnorthangel27:northangel27 0 19 A stolen moment by Zwerg- A stolen moment :iconzwerg-:Zwerg- 71 37 Riddle by AbigailLarson Riddle :iconabigaillarson:AbigailLarson 1,818 78 I dreamed I loved you... by Orpheelin I dreamed I loved you... :iconorpheelin:Orpheelin 4,756 257 ' by theluckynine ' :icontheluckynine:theluckynine 414 22 Pepper Romance by Artgerm Pepper Romance :iconartgerm:Artgerm 7,072 866 Pepper Sensuous by Artgerm
Mature content
Pepper Sensuous :iconartgerm:Artgerm 3,920 301
The Swan by northangel27 The Swan :iconnorthangel27:northangel27 22 16 Deep In Thoughts by Expell-HUN Deep In Thoughts :iconexpell-hun:Expell-HUN 51 66 p o i s e by fludish p o i s e :iconfludish:fludish 117 20 ann by bubble-gum-heart ann :iconbubble-gum-heart:bubble-gum-heart 315 54 Where the lost ones go by annikenhannevik Where the lost ones go :iconannikenhannevik:annikenhannevik 722 130 Shadow Of The Day by annikenhannevik Shadow Of The Day :iconannikenhannevik:annikenhannevik 744 83 day by Eliara day :iconeliara:Eliara 198 19

Activity




Sympathetic Magic can also be found on fanfiction.net (although not all the chapters are up yet) here: www.fanfiction.net/~ls269

Here is the order of chapters:

All Is Full of Love ls269.deviantart.com/art/All-i…
The Best of Both Worlds ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-B…
The Vinculus Charm ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-V…
The Hypocritic Oath ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-H…
The Last Night ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-L…
Vengeance ls269.deviantart.com/art/Venge…
Meg and Guillotine ls269.deviantart.com/art/Meg-a…
The Slytherin Common Room ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-S…
Hemlock and Vanilla ls269.deviantart.com/art/Hemlo…
Knockturn Alley ls269.deviantart.com/art/Knock…
Desconfianza ls269.deviantart.com/art/Desco…
Flesh Wounds + Flesh Memories ls269.deviantart.com/art/Flesh…
Blue Satin ls269.deviantart.com/art/Blue-…
Spilt Milk, Part One ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spilt…
Spilt Milk, Part Two ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spilt…
Spilt Milk, Part Three ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spilt…
Spilt Milk, Part Four ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spilt…
Spilt Milk, Part Five ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spilt…
Spilt Milk, Part Six ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spilt…
Spilt Milk, Part Seven ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spilt…
A Single Candle ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Sin…
Rosura ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosur…
Rosura, Part Two ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosur…
Rosura, Part Three ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosur…
Rosura, Part Four ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosur…
Rosura, Part Five ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosur…
Rosura, Part Six ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosur…
Rosura, Part Seven ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosur…
Where the Action Is ls269.deviantart.com/art/Where…
Rosura, Part Eight ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosur…
Splintered ls269.deviantart.com/art/Splin…
Torn ls269.deviantart.com/art/Torn-…
The Green-Eyed Monster ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-G…
The Corona ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-C…
Professor Caladrius ls269.deviantart.com/art/Profe…
Divination ls269.deviantart.com/art/Divin…
The Plan ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-P…
Furious Calm ls269.deviantart.com/art/Furio…
Full Fathom Five ls269.deviantart.com/art/Full-…
The Descent, Part One ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-D…
The Descent, Part Two ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-D…
A Taste of Things to Come ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Tas…
A Taste of Thing to Come II ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Tas…
Curly Hair, Feathers and Flame ls269.deviantart.com/art/Curly…
The Porcelain Bitch ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-P…
A Little Corner of Paradise ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Lit…
A Means to Nothing ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Mea…
A Beautiful Accident ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Bea…
Less Broken ls269.deviantart.com/art/Less-…
Two Romantic Reunions ls269.deviantart.com/art/Two-R…
Constructive Agony ls269.deviantart.com/art/Const…
White in the Moon ls269.deviantart.com/art/White…
Lily and the Unicorn, Part One ls269.deviantart.com/art/Lily-…
Lily and the Unicorn, Part Two ls269.deviantart.com/art/Lily-…
Lily and the Unicorn, Part 3 ls269.deviantart.com/art/Lily-…
Monochrome ls269.deviantart.com/art/Monoc…
Foe Fire ls269.deviantart.com/art/Foe-F…
Jaded ls269.deviantart.com/art/Jaded…
Possession ls269.deviantart.com/art/Posse…
A Wife, a Mother, and a Corpse ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Wif…
Damage Limitation ls269.deviantart.com/art/Damag…
The Viceberg ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-V…
The Cavalry ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-C…
Otherworldly ls269.deviantart.com/art/Other…
The Thaw ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-T…
The Angel in the Ice ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-A…
The Loose End ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-L…
Spinning Plates ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spinn…
Spinning Plates, Part Two ls269.deviantart.com/art/Spinn…
The Fall ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-F…
The Rise ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-R…
Sympathetic Magic ls269.deviantart.com/art/Sympa…
Once Upon a Time ls269.deviantart.com/art/Once-…
The Soulless Redhead ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-S…
Happily Ever After ls269.deviantart.com/art/Happi…
Sanctuary ls269.deviantart.com/art/Sanct…
Never, Never, Never Land ls269.deviantart.com/art/Never…
Day and Night ls269.deviantart.com/art/Day-a…
Smoke ls269.deviantart.com/art/Smoke…
Shades of Red ls269.deviantart.com/art/Shade…
The Man who Lived ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-M…
Rosemary ls269.deviantart.com/art/Rosem…
Pandora's Box ls269.deviantart.com/art/Pando…
The Witch and the Wardrobe ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-W…
Smouldering ls269.deviantart.com/art/Smoul…
Miss Morgan ls269.deviantart.com/art/Miss-…
Notes on the Bad Guy ls269.deviantart.com/art/Notes…
The Nightmare Guide ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-N…
Creepers ls269.deviantart.com/art/Creep…
Another Argument ls269.deviantart.com/art/Anoth…
Darkling ls269.deviantart.com/art/Darkl…
The Cavalry Again ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-C…
Medicine ls269.deviantart.com/art/Medic…
The Silver Lining ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-S…
Dittany ls269.deviantart.com/art/Ditta…
The Furies ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-F…
Danae ls269.deviantart.com/art/Danae…
Memento Morry ls269.deviantart.com/art/Memen…
Accio Heart ls269.deviantart.com/art/Accio…
At Death's Door ls269.deviantart.com/art/At-De…
Bleeding the Witch ls269.deviantart.com/art/Bleed…
Paint it Black ls269.deviantart.com/art/Paint…
The Pure-blood Prince ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-P…
The Garden of Eden ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-G…
Two More Romantic Reunions ls269.deviantart.com/art/Two-M…
Like Waking ls269.deviantart.com/art/Like-…
On the Sidelines ls269.deviantart.com/art/On-th…
Resurgam ls269.deviantart.com/art/Resur…
The Ghost of Christmas Past ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-G…
The Black Widows ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-B…
The Liberus Charm ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-L…
Cupboard Love ls269.deviantart.com/art/Cupbo…
Tabula ls269.deviantart.com/art/Tabul…
Mrs. Malfoy ls269.deviantart.com/art/Mrs-M…
The Coast Road ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-C…
The 'No Contest' Contest ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-N…
Impressions ls269.deviantart.com/art/Impre…
Tea and Sympathy ls269.deviantart.com/art/Tea-a…
The Red Queen ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-R…
Worlds Away ls269.deviantart.com/art/World…
A Travelling Doctor ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Tra…
Down Among the Dead Things ls269.deviantart.com/art/Down-…
Death and the Maiden ls269.deviantart.com/art/Death…
A Conspiracy of Idiots ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Con…
Narratively Speaking ls269.deviantart.com/art/Narra…
Angels with Runny Noses ls269.deviantart.com/art/Angel…
Accidental Grace ls269.deviantart.com/art/Accid…
Before the Plunge ls269.deviantart.com/art/Befor…
Supper-time ls269.deviantart.com/art/Suppe…
Despair, Full Stop ls269.deviantart.com/art/Despa…
The Right Murder ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-R…
All is Full of Hate ls269.deviantart.com/art/All-i…
The Phoenix and the Unicorn ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-P…
The Proper Future ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-P…
Eat Slugs ls269.deviantart.com/art/Eat-S…
Well Met by Moonlight ls269.deviantart.com/art/Well-…
Still Life ls269.deviantart.com/art/Still…
A Chance ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Cha…
The Potter-factor ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-P…
From Russia with Love ls269.deviantart.com/art/From-…
The New Young Widows' Club ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-N…
Mrs Fearless Pure-blood Gryffindor ls269.deviantart.com/art/Mrs-F…
Instant, Earnest, Breathless Believer ls269.deviantart.com/art/Insta…
Benighted ls269.deviantart.com/art/Benig…
Epilogue 1: Statistically Significant ls269.deviantart.com/art/Epilo…
Epilogue 2: Sunlight and Weeds ls269.deviantart.com/art/Epilo…

One-shot fics:

Always Winter, Never Christmas ls269.deviantart.com/art/Alway…
Potions ls269.deviantart.com/art/Potio…
The Goddess of Death ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-G…
The Goddess of Waking ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-G…
Scars ls269.deviantart.com/art/Scars…
Comfort and Joy ls269.deviantart.com/art/Comfo…
Days of Dunder ls269.deviantart.com/art/Days-…
Northern Comfort ls269.deviantart.com/art/North…
Northern Comfort, Part Two ls269.deviantart.com/art/North…
The Maltese Hippogriff ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-M…
Memos from Purgatory ls269.deviantart.com/art/Memos…
A Kind of Potion ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Kin…
Night Ramblings ls269.deviantart.com/art/Night…
The Dark Snitch ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-D…
Yesterday's Slug Club ls269.deviantart.com/art/Yeste…

Essays:

Musings on the Muse ls269.deviantart.com/art/Musin…
Tragic Consolations ls269.deviantart.com/art/Tragi…

Spinners--End Challenge entries:

Days of Dunder ls269.deviantart.com/art/Days-…
Northern Comfort ls269.deviantart.com/art/North…
Northern Comfort, Part Two ls269.deviantart.com/art/North…
The Liberus Charm ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-L…
The Maltese Hippogriff ls269.deviantart.com/art/The-M…
A Kind of Potion ls269.deviantart.com/art/A-Kin…


I’ve started listening to audiobooks on my commute to work. The reason behind this is that my inner monologue can’t be trusted in the morning (it can’t really be trusted at any time of day, and I’m hoping to write another journal entry setting out all its unhelpful twists and turns, but I thought I’d start with something neutral, after such a long time away, so this entry is about audiobooks – with some allowances for the fact that I can’t stay on topic at the best of times, and I’m going to start out by describing the worst of times).

The morning is no good. All my worst memories come back to me. Every painful thing that has ever occurred, or is likely to occur, occurs to me. I am tormented by such disparate topics as the decline of the NHS, the man who bullied me at my first job, my friend’s upcoming promotion, and my inability to sort out baby swimming classes. They all tend towards one inescapable conclusion: I am shit.

There's an awesome artwork by MichaelBrack which beautifully expresses this deluge of negative thoughts:

Monsters by MichaelBrack

This is me. The monsters are me too. But I have no sense of there being a victim in the case, just as I have no sense of there being an aggressor. It feels like the truth. I’m just telling myself the truth. And, sure, I wouldn’t think those things about other people, or consider telling them so bluntly if I did, but I’m with myself, and I have no notion of cruelty. Just misery.

So I started listening to Edgar Allen Poe, but this turned out to be a mistake, because his short stories were just as dark, unwholesome, and melodramatic as my inner monologue. Also, the baby wasn’t sleeping through the night at that point, and Edgar Allen Poe combined with sleep deprivation is a heady, worrying brew.

I’ll give you an example. There’s a story called ‘The Imp of the Perverse’ (not perverse as in kinky fetishes, though I’m sure Edgar Allen Poe had plenty of those, but perverse as in perversity, contrariness, rebelliousness without good reason). And, in it, the narrator has committed a murder, and covered his tracks so brilliantly that no-one thinks of suspecting him. He’s walking along the street one morning, congratulating himself on this fact, when he suddenly thinks how funny it would be if he just blurted it out, right there in the street. And, because he’s thought it, he has to do it. He starts running, to try and suppress the impulse, or get away from all the potential witnesses, but the trouble with running in a public street is that people tend to assume you’ve done something wrong, and run after you. By the time they catch up to him, he’s shouting about his crimes at the top of his voice, betrayed by his own perversity.

Anyway, I know this imp of the perverse. Several times a day, it will occur to me that it would be particularly stupid, particularly suicidal, to do a certain thing, and then I become paralysed with the terror that I will actually do it. I can see it happening. There seems such an infinitesimal gap between thinking it and doing it. Like when you suddenly change your mind ordering drinks, and you’re struck by the vertiginous thrill of just how quickly reality can change as a result of your actions. All the way into town, I thought I was going to get a Diet Coke, and now here I am looking at a gin and tonic. I’m not an impulsive girl, so these moments genuinely shock me.

But the worst of it is the train. There’s a fast-moving train that comes through the station three minutes before my train to work. It’s heralded by that familiar, jerky, automated message: ‘Please stand well away from the edge of Platform Three; the approaching train is not scheduled to stop at this station’.

Anyway, one morning after listening to Poe’s Imp of the Perverse, it occurred to me that it would be particularly stupid to run out in front of the train. I mean, nothing contentious there. Probably nothing unusual either. I daresay it has occurred to many a commuter that it would be stupid to jump out in front of a train. Only I had to hold onto a nearby pillar for fear that I would actually do it. Not because I was depressed (although I realize I shouldn’t have prefaced this with a description of my early-morning inner-monologue) but because it would be an awful thing to do.

Anyway, Poe was a bad fit – too much like me, no power to draw me out of myself. After him, I tried Neil Gaiman (oh my god, he’s good! But I couldn’t seem to fall in love with any of his characters except for Coraline – and I defy anybody not to love Coraline), Joanne M. Harris (considering how much I love Severus Snape, I’m not as keen on Loki as I would have thought), Luke Smitherd’s ‘The Physics of the Dead’, and Peter S. Beagle’s ‘A Fine and Private Place' (both made me feel so sorry for dead people that, when a colleague recently died, I felt guilty as well as upset – as though there could only be so many places amongst the world of the living, and I had no business hogging one when she’d been turned out of hers – until I said to myself ‘Lucy, you are going to die too, and your funeral will not be so well-attended’).

I then embarked on a joyful reunion with Charles Dickens. Oh, it does me good, listening to Charles Dickens (as read by Martin Jarvis) on my way to work in the mornings! It fills me with a genial curiosity about my fellow commuters. Listening to the way he observes people – the dry, funny, quizzical, bemused, and delighted way he does it – makes me think that it wouldn’t be a bad thing to just sit back and look at the world, rather than agonizing about my place in it. And Martin Jarvis is so good. He never gets lost in those long sentences. He really brings home how lively and funny that writing is.

I don’t really get on with Dickens when he starts moralizing. I think he’s too hard on a few of his characters, but I don’t think (at least, I don’t think I think) that his heroines are lifeless, idealized and dumb. In fact, thinking about Dickens’s female characters inspired the following section in my story (which I will paste in here because I can’t resist pushing my story on people):

They were silent again, though it was a prickly silence. There was something about her now which reminded him of Estella in Great Expectations – something of that mild, composed astonishment that other people should have feelings, or expect her to comprehend them.

He’d had a crush on Estella when Ellini had read the novel to him. Perhaps it was because he recognized something in her. They had both been lonely children who would have done anything to be loved, they had both been shown love late – but, in Estella’s case, too late. She hadn’t been able to understand it. Jack hadn’t either, come to that, but he had known that he wanted it. Neglect had given Estella a heart of ice, but it had given Jack a heart that was always hungry – and, when you had spent three years in an orphan asylum, you didn’t use the word hunger lightly. It was not a tickly little distraction but a bleak, full-bodied ache. It took over your identity.

Strange that he was now comparing her to Estella when he had once compared her to Lucie Manette. You couldn’t conceive of two more different characters – and yet Lucie Manette had never seemed like a character to Jack. She had not seemed like a person in her own right but like a symbol of the grace that brought out the best in others. A sign-post pointing the way to virtue. And whether Mister Dickens expected all women to be a symbol, and got quite upset when they stopped pointing the way to virtue and, for example, scratched their noses, was a question which was answered, in that novel at least, by the lovely, flawed humanity of Miss Pross. Jack would cheerfully have married Miss Pross in preference to Lucie Manette, but he would most cheerfully – though the thought quite depressed him at the moment – have married Estella.

I think audiobooks are a good solution to my problems with reading (and oh, I have many problems with reading – don’t think that laziness isn’t one of them, but probably the biggest is fear. If you knew how many books I’d started and then never finished, in the expectation that I was going to get my heart broken, you’d be amazed. I could fill a library with the books I never finished).

Lots of people say you can’t be a writer without being a reader, but I think it’s my frustration with other people’s fictional worlds, and my desire to have a world of my own that I can control, which makes me want to write. I suppose people would call that escapism, but I don’t agree with the stigma that has become attached to that word (matter for another journal entry, I hope). Anyway, I have no problems with escapism. I was born to escape. I was doing it before I even knew what I was escaping.

So, my major problem with reading: I get too emotionally involved in books. I fall in love with characters who die and relationships which end. I find myself unfairly resenting the second person the hero falls in love with, and cheering on his first love, even if she’s a bitch. I think I can sense an unhappy ending coming, because I will sometimes dig in my heels when I’ve only got a hundred pages left, and mutinously refuse to go any further.

Audiobooks help because somehow – counter-intuitively – they create a sort of distance between me and the text. You’d think it would be the other way around, because it’s actually being performed into my ears – every scream and sigh and whimper is being voiced – but, somehow, because it’s less personal, because my brain isn’t creating those voices, and giving them characteristics I recognize from people I love, I am less involved. Which isn’t to say that an audiobook hasn’t made me cry. I was crying a lot at the beginning of David Copperfield (because it was about a boy whose mother couldn’t stand up for him, and I was wondering whether I’d have the strength to stand up for my own little boy in similar circumstances) but I just pretended I had the sniffles, and watched my fellow commuters politely squirming away from me.

Bad things about audiobooks: you can’t throw them across the room in frustration – at least, not without damaging valuable electronic equipment. This was particularly a problem for me when I was listening to Mayhem by Sarah Pinborough (I was pretty angry with myself for sticking it out to its moronic conclusion).

Other bad thing, particularly with Dickens: you really can’t (or I really can’t) appreciate lovely images or well-worded sentiments as much as if you were reading them in print. I hit the ‘rewind thirty seconds’ button pretty damn regularly, but it’s not the same as having the words written out before you, to linger on and savour as much as you’d like.

So, in conclusion, I’m reading again, and I’m happy about it (that was a lot of words, just to say ‘I’m reading again and I’m happy about it’!) I wanted to start writing journals again, because a) I wanted to dislodge that whiny ‘Not too Shabby’ entry of three years ago, b) I’ve been through a big life upheaval (or Michael, as we call him) and I’m just starting to recover and sort my feelings out. I thought it would do me good to write out my thoughts on everything that has happened since. So, coming up, you lucky things, will be journal entries about such treats as Motherhood, the Never-ending List of Things that Went Wrong, Writing Postnatally, my Inner Monologue and How it Refuses to Engage with CBT, plus Anything Else I Can Think of That Might Make Me Less Confused. I will not write a whining journal entry if nobody replies. I will continue to resist the Temptation Train (actually, I stand on the footbridge now until it has safely passed, and mostly my own train is so late that this doesn’t cause any problems). And I will always, always keep writing.   

 

deviantID

ls269
Lucy Stone
United Kingdom

Comments


Add a Comment:
 
:iconveronika-art:
Veronika-Art Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2018
Thinking of you. Happy birthday from the distance :cake::love::dalove:
Reply
:icongryffgirl:
Gryffgirl Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2017
Happy birthday! :iconbirthdaycakeplz:
Reply
:iconesperanza111:
esperanza111 Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2017
Happy birthday, dear Lucy! Have your cake and eat it too 
Reply
:iconjustbecause62:
JustBecause62 Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
so it's been years since I first discovered and read Sympathetic Magic, and it seems like you're not on dA much anymore, but I think I should tell you that I'm going through all the HP books again and my favorite thing is interepreting everything Snape does as an extension of the way you characterize Severus. because it is SO. SPOT. ON. everything Snape does makes perfect sense from your Sev's narration and it's a joy.
Reply
:icongryffgirl:
Gryffgirl Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2016
Happy birthday! :iconcakeplz:
Reply
:iconnightmustfall:
NightMustFall Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Have you seen this "movie"? :)
For some reason I think you will enjoy it :)
www.youtube.com/watch?v=EmsntG…
Reply
:iconmelorik:
Melorik Featured By Owner Sep 9, 2015
Oh dear oh dear oh dear, 

It's been such a long time since I ventured on this site that I completely forgot the birthday of my favorite writer. Please pardon my boorishness and absentmindedness. I hope that you will accept this belated "Happy Birthday" and best wishes. 

As an aside, congratulations as well on the addition to your family; may he have the prose of his mother. 

Wishing you all the best, 

Sam (aka. Melorik the Mad)
Reply
:icongryffgirl:
Gryffgirl Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2015
Happy birthday! :iconrainbowbummiecakeplz:
Reply
:iconjoeyv7:
joeyv7 Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2014
Hide Birthday Emote :cakerun: Hide Birthday Emote 
Reply
:iconls269:
ls269 Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2014
Thanks, Cathy! :hug: :hug: :hug: 
Reply
Add a Comment: