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Tournament Round I
Tournament Round II

Mature Content

Tournament Round III

Mature Content

Concrete Monsters by AnnaGiladi

Mature Content

The Coronabury TalesEre April approached, with its flowers sweet,as frost of March abated from heat,was then unleashed yon virus COVIDAnd thus entrapped men with belovedfamily and pets; kept from their labors,enforcing sequester betwixt all their neighbors.When quarantine was by law utteredand henceforth all bars and eateries shuttered,and all merry gath’rings of fifty included;all man quarantined, sequestered, secluded.And once all places of business were gonethen eke it happened to all schoolyards anon.So all were safely ensconced in their bowerswith naught to while away all their hours.And if ‘twas contact with friends they desiredusing the portal of Skype was required.And thusly was how it then came to bethat gathered there thence our pilgrims three.“Lo!” quoth the barkeep, an amiable type,“’tis well that I should with thee two enskype!Bereft of mine patrons, on good ale them sipping,I am now bereaved of all their kind tipping!”“I’ve no such respite!” quoth the poor, weary grocer,“to madness I grow each day ever closer!How now with you?” of the housewife inquired.“How bear ye the burden of what has transpired?”“How to reply?” the good lass doth sayeth,“I must beseech that thee for me prayeth!From husband and children I have no reprieve,for mine abode I’m not permitted to leave!There’s been naught but home-school for all my sad dayswith nothing assuaging my hopeless malaise.”“Rejoice, happy wife,” scoffed the barkeep so jolly,“To long for the scuffling of crowds is but folly!Savages, the lot! Each on their mad caper,pillaging the land of all toilet paper!”“Aye,” spake the grocer, “I’m of ilk mind;gladly would I these hordes leave behind!Dear barkeep, my comrade, your horrors do tell usso that the dear young wife be not jealous.”
The Bartender’s TaleWhilom this was, in old days of yore, before we by plague wert entrapped evermore.This goodly servant, yours truly, so humble, espied me a drunkard into my bar stumble.Now I care no whit for where any man sups, but I tell you now sooth, he was deep in his cups!He sat down with haste, his eyes all a-blear,“Yon barkeep, I demand thine choicest beer!”“Alas,” sayeth I, as I shaketh mine head,“Hasten thee out, sally forth off to bed!”Quoth he, “If thou wouldst mine rights so divest,and roguishly deny my solemn behest,then shall I repay thee thrice seven-fold,mine righteous revenge thou shalt then behold!”“Already,” quoth I, “you’ve had several scoreof brews and spirits ere thee walked through yon door!Should I, good brother, more liquor remit,I fear that thine heart wouldst on thee fast quit!”“Ah!” quoth he, “that’s the root of the matter!I needs must empty both belly and bladder!Then, with that void, no brews there withinto stay thine skilled hand from my tonic and gin!”Then, oh the great horrors! I dare hardly tell!All his previous beers he began to expel! The sight of it all! I could hardly think!And soon his great belly was purged of his drink.“What say ye now?” demanded the lout.“It doth now appear that I am withouta single drink in my poor vacant body,so, brother barkeep, I’d like a hot toddy!”But ere I could do aught, or even reply,it seemed things for him went swiftly awry.His eyes rolleth back, and he made not a peep,and in his own sick he soon fell asleep.***And so the barkeeper’s tale doth then endethand into silent reflection he sendeththose whom he Skypeth, the stillness unbroken till these gentle words hath he verily spoken:“For my part, I’m glad of this fleeting respiteand dread the return to my miserable plight!I would have quitted mine work long ago,but for those bills I’ll receive evermo’!”Quoth then the grocer, “if that makes you nervous,hear ye my tale of customer service!”
The Grocer’s Tale
I labor and toil to keep shelves repletewith eggs and bread and various meat.But ravaged with fear of formidable plague,and our futures dim and abysmally vague,the masses will swarm in one frenzied clutter,then blameth me for such lack of butter!Now on this morn, when my tale so begins,I recount anon those myriad sinsof greedy shoppers in their mad queue,but I shall speak only of these sorry two. The first were a man, his belly well-roundedfrom multitudinous beers he hath pounded,his voluptuous gut was on full display,and incredible reek of Axe body spray.Now the second player in this strange taleof which I shall for thee soon regale:I ken not her name, but I see her ilk oft,she holds her desires quite too far aloft.Rhinestone sunglasses crown her dyed pate,her face is contorted with botox and hate.Her eyes are dead black, and her soul is quite barren,the oft dreaded sight of that beast we call Karen.As her red-clawed hands hath reached for a canher way was then barred by our beer-gutted man.And as he made to seize yon canned beansher fist towards his visage quite swiftly careens.“God curse ye, foul wench, with breath of white wine!Off with ye now, for these victuals art mine!”And when she ignored that which he beseeched,he grabbed her spiked hair so fastidiously bleached.She swung her foot then, her shoe of spiked heel,with force to his nethers, a violent appeal!I jumped quickly to judge these scoundrels effete,as their berth was quite surely far short of six feet!But then there arrived, to tell I am fain,a haggard old crone bent over her cane.She espied her the scene, and onward she shuffledto where our two heroes so valiantly scuffled.“Such disgrace!” quoth she with a low muttered curseand battered them both with her cane and her purse.Then snatched she the beans without further preambles,and out of the market she gleefully shambles.***“My pity you’ve earned,” quoth the wife to her friend.“But take heart and know our seclusion will end! I long for the morn when we depart from our places,and I ne’er again must see mine family’s faces!And if ye thinketh me quite full of spite,attend ye thine ears to my poor lot last night!
The Housewife’s Tale
The good Lord himself rests on day sevenafter he hath created the earth and the heaven.Yet no such reprieve, reward, nor almsis granted to unlucky home-schooling moms.And now our dear husbands – at least so to mine –is naught but a stroll in yon unemployment line.Now he lingers at home, a self-pitying waste,since he’s by COVID been abruptly displaced.Say I to he, “work be what thee wishes,thou can help me with laundry and dishes!”Quoth he, “Mayhap I would do as ye bade,but I’d prove a hindrance far more than an aid!”“Well, then,” quoth I, “assist thine fair child,who from her own schoolhouse is newly exiled.Remote school hath she, and it stoke her to wrath,for she cannot spell, and be sucky at math.”“God forbid it!” he sayeth, with grave look of sorrow,“Perchance I may be of some use on the morrow.But mine head for numbers is quite hopeless a case,and wert I to help, I would bring her disgrace.”“So,” sayeth I, with magnificent pout,“I haveth a man who would fain loaf about!”“This deal I propose,” he went on to tell,“For bravely attempt I thine wroth for to quell!Our dear teenage daughter, I think ye’d agree,with thine scholarly mind, she wouldst best learn from thee.For my contribution, since it must needs be done,I shall keep charge o’er our sweet infant son.”To this offer I scoffed, for I knew his true mind!We both know our teen’s a pain in the behind.But the boy, it’s no secret, is still gentle and mild,for he has not grown yet to an insolent child.“Fine!” sayeth I, “do whatever you please!Yet know I thine preference is a matter of ease!”And thus it continued well into the night,but then there came shouting of terrible fright!From inside the bathroom came that frightful screech,and I fled from mine daughter, who I sought to teach.I hurried anon thence, my glasses askew,and was greeted by husband quite covered in poo.The sweet little boy, with joy all alight,ran bare ‘round mine husband in naked delight.“Dear wife!” cried mine husband, “I’ll fain help our teen!‘Tis thee who is most skilled in bathrooms to clean.”“Nay, precious husband, for by thine own rule,thine head is not fitted for helping with school.But by thine wise words, the babe’s in thine keep!Just wash thee thine hands ere you mop and you sweep!”***Capti sumus in domos nostras, in saecula saeculorum. Amen.
Harold the Murderous Starfish[WARNING TO ALL: THIS STORY WAS PART OF A WRITING ASSIGNMENT AND WAS WRITTEN ALMOST ENTIRELY USING NOTES FROM MY TUTOR AND THE RESULT IS A MESS. READ AT YOUR OWN DISCRETION; I'M NOT KEEN ON THIS ONE.] My hatred of their kind is roiling inside of me even now, secreted as I am beneath the gathering of kelp dancing in this tropical current.Like its counterpoint of love, hate can make the weak careless and self-destructive; as both had done to all of my insipid siblings over the years. Often we had gathered about Mother, and she had stood high on her rock, her thousand legs steady, each of her five eyes staring us down as we sat encircled and awaiting her wisdom.Mother would tell us of our father, if ever even one of us asked about him. ‘Your father’s name, children, was Francis,’ she would begin, her rich voice carrying to the many hundreds of us, ‘and he was beautiful – his epidermis coarse and golden as the sun. He was taken from me, from you, by horrid creatures that play at being a part of the ocean, but do not give her their breath: this air-huffing blight are called “dolphins”. ‘The outright theft of your father occurred not even a week after I had lain your eggs safely under this very rock. Francis and I were off feeding in the seaweed forest when a group of disastrously uncouth bottle-nosed cretins came skulking through the rows – at first, we were unconcerned, as we starfish make poor food for their sort. But they began to harangue us on account of our glorious celestial shapes, and made a cheap game of us; snatching Francis and I up and hurling us about without a care. They cast me down, but carried your faultless father off with them, jeering as the one holding him trailed Francis’ blood from his mouth. I never saw them or Francis again; and you, his children, never saw him at all... And why? Because dolphins are wantonly cruel and impetuous, and we happened to be there.’ I had listened along with them, and now it appears that I am the only one who had taken heed; the words are still in my heart and the passion still stirs.The kelp that currently caresses me at this crucial point stretches out along the step of an incline, gently lifting up toward the beach several hundred yards off; between me and the shoreline, only tender little dunes of the finest, glistening sand and the odd drifting particle can be seen. It is a most beautiful little wasteland. As expected, it was not long before the dolphin arrived onto the scene, blasting echo-location into the sand in the hopes of locating whatever scant prey could be found there – I nearly broke cover then and there, but wrangled myself and waited for her to approach. I had chosen this strand of islands due to the noted frequency of dolphin pods that come through them at this season each year. It’s my first time off on my own, and I am loving iiiiiiiiiiiit! Okay, so maybe Mum and Dad aren’t totally out of line in worrying – I’m still a bit of a pup; but I know I’m up to this: we’re just splitting the pack for a bit to find what food we can as quickly as we can so that we don’t lose out at the feeding-grounds. By now I’ve already evaded orca-pods with the rest of the pack: I can dodge, I can dash, I can turn just as sharp as the big kids.But... Even in this shallow water, the sea seems pretty big stretching off all around with not even one pack-member swimming alongside me... Okay, so I’m a little scared, sure; I’m not a total dingdong. I’m following my instincts through a few narrow reefs when I find this nice, quiet little patch. I send signals into the sands for a bit, but start heading down an incline toward a crop of kelp when I have no luck finding food near the shore. Suddenly, mercilessly, just as planned and envisioned, I must now make my attack, reasoning that the beast was as close as she is going to get before her next breach for air.My plan is perfect: I have noted that creatures from the land have a habit of being supremely loud and obnoxious, and reasoned that springing forward toward her with a sharp, drawn out scream of primal rage – indefinitely sustained via drawing water through my first two valves and out through my back three – that could meet and exceed her species’ own, will cause her to be so stricken with mortal terror that the brute will surely freeze in place, close her eyes, and accept her fate.Ah, but you must wonder how exactly I am to do the invader any harm in the first place? A trifling thing: I have, through much endeavour and careful manipulation, managed to get a rather large rock on top of myself, and coming to a sudden stop at the end of my sprint, pure inertia will certainly take over and hurl the rock at her head with such force that it will shatter her wretched skull and pierce her brain. And from there, my cause and its allies can only grow and grow, until the entire ocean is at last liberated. I suddenly hear this high, piping sound that I first figure is a gull on the surface; but when it gets louder, closer. Then I look up and see a little yellow starfish heading my way at a pretty good speed for a “crawler” (about a yard a minute), screaming and carrying a small pebble on his back. I wait patiently for the creature to reach his destination before asking him what he’s about. That’d seems polite to me. He looks like he’s making for the shoreline, and I figure that what he’s doing must be like a custom among his people, since he’s making such a display of himself... What with the slight white slope up toward the beach, and the bigger clumps of stones, pebbles and crushed shells just before the shoreline, I figure it can’t be an easy thing for him. I feel for him, y’know? Maybe this is the reason there’s so many lines of stuff lined up around the shore? Maybe he’s screaming to psych himself up for the climb, like how I’m trying to focus on not messing up my first hunt right now, but still have the wiggins... As I grow closer to the mammal, I begin to realize, even through my fury, how young she is... Perfect, her death will be all the more demoralising to her kin.Not only has my prolonged scream been a success in drawing the creature’s attention and fixing her in place, but a grimace that has to signify fear is slowly spreading across her hideous features (though I am of course honest enough to admit that, having never had a face, I may be misconstruing the expression). The poor thing’s taking so long in his dash to the shore that I pop up for a quick breach of air, but when I come back down in a different spot, I notice that the little guy seems to have changed his course like he’s been running at me in particular... Dope that I am, I finally understand what’s happening: this is some kind of local welcoming-dance in my honour – I’m so touched that I could just totally die.I’d defiantly be helping the little sweetheart out if I head towards him like he’s coming at me. It seems now that my foe is coming closer, and better yet, swimming along the seafloor to meet with me! Ha! She’s so resigned to her doom that she cannot bear to wait for me!My awesome and well decided upon weapon shall be my trophy of this glorious act! The banner of our cause! ‘TAKE THIS!’ I cry as I come to a hard and immediate stop, and indeed, my missile takes off at the fiend.Only to falter at the length of my arm and succumb to a gentle, disastrous arc before plopping into the sand with an almost imperceptible whiff of displaced sand.The miscreant lets out a gasp and says: ‘Oh wow! Thanksh mishter!’The affronts and impossibilities continue to mount as the wretched thing scoops the pebble up in her jaws and carries on yammering.‘Oh!’ says the enemy, cruelly opting to taunt me by claiming my weapon and lording it over me, ‘Here I am, shupposed to be looking for food, and then you show up! Wait here hleashe! My shishtersh headed thish way with me, lemme jusht go fetch ‘em sho they can she!’And with that, she zips off. Carrying my rock in her teeth. It seems a characteristic of dolphins then, to see that someone or something holds significance to another, and then abscond with them... What had just happened? How had she caused the rock, as vast and heavy as it had been to me, to pass so short and shallow a distance? The implication of the answer was awful, but unavoidable: the young dolphin... Is a witch. Mother had said that they all were, but I didn’t think one so young...I cannot flee my fate; mine are a proud people. I will stand and face my enemies in defeat, so that they are forced to witness the true brand of courage that I represent. They are not welcome, and we will not submit. I scent Lisa and Clara not far off from the jagged reef and blurt out what just happened.‘First, shrimp,’ said Lisa, ‘Get that stone out of your mouth; you sound like a yokel or something.’‘Can’t!’ I say, ‘It’sh a preshent!’ Lisa rolls her eyes at this; she’s oldest and still thinks I’m a stupid little girl. But I can see in Clara’s eyes that’s she totally interested.‘We were actually about to head over to you, squeak.’ Says Clara (she always calls me squeak), ‘Uncle Norm found a slew of clams by the next island, so that’s all the grub we’ll need for now.’ And so, the three of us group up and head back to where I’ve left the little starfish. ‘We should pick up some nice pebbles of our own before heading back Squeak.’ says Clara, ‘It might be that we have to offer some up in return.’‘Great idea!’ I say, having to give a loop-de-loop with how jazzed I’m feeling.‘And you should really run us through the motions of his dance, so we can do it back to him...’ It isn’t long before the terrible thing returns, now with two more of her kind – a veritable coven, and each of them also holding a stone in their gargantuan mouths.‘That’sh him!’ says the foul little witch, indicating me with her grotesque flipper.‘That little guy?’ asks a larger apostle of darkness.‘Yup! Okay Clara, like I shaid, yeah?’ says the witch, looking back at another that is clutching a smoothed rock in her jaws.This “Clara” nods and swims forward, while the witch lowers herself onto the seafloor a few yards from me, holding still long enough for her sister-witch to place the rock down on top of her head.‘Now then, Mishter Shtarfish, you be sure and tell me if I’m doing any of thish wrong, yeah?’ says the sardonic imp, ‘I don’t wanna be dishrespectful or anything!’And with that, she begins to crawl along toward me, letting out a long scream as she approaches, before coming to a stop and swinging her head to dislodge the rock so that it tumbles down into the sand a few inches from the tip of my arm, the smaller of her two sisters giggling through the whole affair.‘Come on girlsh! It’sh kinda fun! And I musht’ve done it right, shince he didn’t shay I didn’t!’But the process is repeated only once more since the eldest witch merely scoffs, spits out her rock, says ‘This is all silly kid’s stuff.’ and swims off when her turn comes to harangue me. Perhaps she is one of the good ones, if there can ever be such a thing.To my great credit, I weather both of these deriding approaches with the utmost dignity – I have to admit that, had I not been undone by the enemy’s witchcraft, I likely would have made just as much of a show dancing about her corpse.The remaining witch-sisters wave goodbye and leave in high spirits, but that first little sorceress cannot resist turning back to me and asking my name.Should I give it? Perhaps I should... Is it not a truer sign of one’s worth to be better remembered by their enemies than by any mere friends?‘My name...’ I say, marshalling all my pride and rancour, ‘IS HAROLD!’ ‘Hi Harold, I’m Zhoe!’ says the beast, ‘And thish ish Clara! Our pack have to move on for now, but we’ll be back through here in a few monthsh! I think my dad would get a major kick out of thish if you and yoursh’ll still be here by then! Shee ya!’And with no more than that, they are gone. I wait a while, a day or so, in case it is some kind of ploy at my expense; but no, I’ve been cast off. Like nothing. As if I hold no power or purpose at all... And some wonder how I hold to my revulsion at their sort? What’s more evil than indifference?I have been humiliated here, but my resolve has been strengthened, and I will move on. And I will fight on. And I will win. I will seek... Larger rocks. Once we’re out of sight of Harold, sensing our way back to the pod through their distant clicks and signals, Clara spits out her rock and says ‘Okay. He can’t see anymore, so you can spit that thing out now.’‘No.’ I say, ‘I’ng kee’ing it!’‘You can’t hold onto it forever you ninny.’ chuckles Clara, ‘Mum won’t let you talk with food in your mouth, you really think she’s gonna let you talk with debris in it?’I sigh and nod, and drop the pebble – the water’s deeper between the islands, there’s a darker blue hiding the seafloor under us and that swallows up my pebble.I’m still smiling, but I’m a bit sad too.Clara nuzzles me and says ‘Come on squeak, let’s go tell everyone about the cute little friend you made.’‘Yeah!’ I say, treating Clara to another loop-de-loop....

Mature Content

YCH: Macrons “Like we agreed.” Ephraim said looking into Orion's sparkling brown puppy dog eyes. “You do remember what that was?” Ephraim sighed and finished the bow that would keep his apron on his waist. It was like the black one he wore for work — at Harbour Grinds. For a regular baker like him, it was enough but for Orion? “I will follow your instructions.” Orion beamed a smile, that went from one of his pointed ears to another. “You can count on me.” Orion saluted him, knocking his shades off his head. Shaking his head Ephraim walked over and snatched the shades with his hands. “Let's take this off. For now — okay honey.” Ephraim put them on top of the fridge by his third limb — his digital camera. Ephraim was proud on how his little demon was taking being this far apart from it. “But!” Orion black spade tip tail shagged from its happy swing. Grabbing his chin with one hand he crushed that frown with his lips. Giving them a quick taste before parting them. “Be a good boy.” Ephraim whispered. Staring him down with his blue eyes. Pink flushed across Orion's nose, only stopping when it reached his ear tips. “Okay,” Orion agreed but his brown eyes looked up at the top of the fridge. “Wash your hands — sweetie.” Ephraim said, trying very hard to be patient with his camera loving fool. Grabbing a full white apron from the table, one he bought with Orion in mind. “And put this on.” Shaking it out, Ephraim looped the neck-hole around Orion's head. Draping the apron down his back. Orion went to the sink, and Ephraim gathered the ingredients for their macrons. The eggs he had out since yesterday, but the others we're away in the cupboards and fridge. “And these are going to be coffee flavoured?” Orion came to the table in the small kitchen. Where they'll do most of the work, because there was no room to do otherwise. “Yes.” Ephraim smiled, feeling the warm enjoyment of baking blooming in his chest. “Macrons can be a bit tricky, but these I think will be fine.” “What will I be doing?” Orion picked up a small canister of coffee from the table. Lifting the lid to give the cheap rich brown powder a sniff. Coffee's dark scent billowed into the small space. Ephraim shoulder's realized with the familiar calming, at least to him — scent. “For now. Can you turn on the oven?” Orion went over to the stove, and looked back to him. “We need to preheat it to 300.” “Why?” Orion asked, but turning the dial like he asked. “It is to get the oven to the temperature. Otherwise, will be waiting as it heats up.” Ephraim explained. “Also, macrons are a sensitive cookie. Having them in their while the temperature rises. Would be bad for them.” “I get it.” Orion came over to Ephraim's side. “You know a lot about these sorts of things. Huh?” Orion smiled, his tail wavering behind him. Ephraim shook his head. “I am only a hobby baker. I only have the basics.” Ephraim finished sorting the ingredients. From dry to wet, to that that needs shifting to those that didn't need that extra step. “Your a pro to me.” Orion kissed Ephraim on the check, and brushing his hand over his long black rabbit ears out of his way. “Anyone would be a pro compared to you.” Ephraim shook off the praise. “Not true.” Orion said shaking his head. “You could do it for a living. The other stuff you made yourself was delicious!” Ephraim thought about it before. Dropping everything. His schooling, his mothers demands, and opening his own coffee and bake shop. Life wasn't that simple. “You just want to get laid.” Ephraim diverted the conversation. Not wanting to think or talk about it further. “You don't have to work that had for it.” Ephraim turned and nipped on Orion's ear lobe. Earning a little whimper from Orion's lips. “Now,” He rolled in a deep husky voice. “Uh-huh.” Orion said his mind a mes from the dazed look in his coffee brown eyes. “Get my electric mixer of the counter.” Ephraim kissed Orion's gaping mouth. “I need to beat some whites, and sugar into submission.” Ephraim growled and licked Orion's lips. “Your so bad.” Orion's face flushed to life. His voice raspy, and confused. Just how he like it. Smiling Ephraim shooed him to the counter top. To fetch his old mint mixer. Giving him a sideways look Orion went and did what he asked. “I know.” Ephraim took the mixer from Orion's hands. Waving the black cord around. “Later I'll show you how bad.” Chuckling he leaned down and plugged the mixer in. “Why not now?” Orion wrapped his hands around Ephraim waist. Hands moving south from there. Ephraim chuckled and smacked the wondering hands away. “Macrons first. Then I'll give you the main course.” Ephraim lifted his eyebrow. “Those who don't help out. Only get to watch.” Flashing his teeth in a fast smile. “What can I do.” Orion asked, his eyes narrowed in determination. Sex the great motivator. Ephraim thought with a smile and a shake of his head. “I need the sugar, coffee and almond flour shifted into this bowl.” Ephraim passed Orion an empty bowl and sifter. Pointing to the ingredients he had on the table. “ I have the measurement written on the cue card beside the flour.” Given him a flat, and very serious look. “Follow it to a t. No more no less.” “I can do that.” Orion smiled, and took his bowl to the chair across from Ephraim. Picking up the cue card. “Easy.” “That's what you said with the last thing we made together.” Ephraim poured the egg whites with the granulated sugar. Into the bowl of the standing electric mixer. “Then we ended up with a mouth full of unbaked flour.” “I was distracted.” Orion face once again turned a bright shade of pink. “And your not this time?” Ephraim dropped his gaze for he was looking at Orion. From the half-lidded view. He watched Orion's adams apple bob. “I must be loosing my touch.” With a fake sigh he turned to spin the eggs. Until it begins to rise and hold its shape. “You're doing this on purpose.” Orion grumbled measuring the flour with great care. “What makes you say that?” Ephraim asked with a chuckle. Knowing very well what he was doing. “Take this. You-you tease.” Orion pushed the bowl at him. Ephraim smiled feeling no shame, and finding Orion's reaction was rather cute. Taking the bowl out from under the mixer, Ephraim grabbed his spatula. “Can your pour this on for me? Slowly.” Ephraim asked. Orion pushed his chair back to stand beside him. Taking the bowl in hand he did what he asked. In silence, they stirred in dry ingredients into egg whites. It was a peaceful feeling. “Can't you stir it faster?” Orion asked. Without pausing the steady folds. Ephraim tilted his head to look Orion in the face. “Not only would it be messy.” Ephraim said, turning back to watch his batter. “Over mixing the ingredients will make the cookies flat.” Lifting the spatula. He showed Orion how it slid of the spatula with a smooth thick light brown finish. “It should slide off the spatula, but not be too runny.” “Macrons are a light cookie.” Orion closed his eyes for a second. Thinking with his head nodding side to side. “That's right.” Ephraim nodded. Placing the spatula to the side. “Now let's get this into the oven.” “Yay!” Orion opened his eyes. “Can I have a taste.” “No!” Ephraim moved in front of the batter. Stopping his out reached hand. “Why not?” Orion looked at him his lips tightening with a stubborn tweak. “Food poisoning is no joke. No unbaked eggs for you.” Ephraim had seen the results of food poisoning before. It was not pretty. He wouldn't let Orion experience it, not by his baking. “Okay,” Orion's shoulders slump. His eyes turned down, he looked so sad. Ephraim had turned into the bad guy. “You can taste the macron cream.” Ephraim said, giving him that t least. Orion did a three-sixty. “Really?” Eyes sparkling once again. He shook his head, sighing. At least Orion was easy to please. “Sure. We need to get these into the oven first.” Ephraim said, taking the parchment off the table. “I got the cookie sheet!” Orion turned and grabbed the sheet Ephraim had left on the counter. “Great.” Ephraim smiled. Measuring the paper to the pan before cutting it off. Perfect fit. “Put it on the counter.” Ephraim instructed, putting down the roll. He grabbed to plastic bag he had made up before Orion came to bake. They were sitting in two a cup to hold them up straight. Filling them up with the macron batter. “What are those?” Orion asked poking his head in your way. Pushing him out of the way with an elbow. “It's a homemade pastry bag, once you cut off the edge of a plastic bag, it'll make a round shape.” Removing them from there cups he twisted them to hold the batter in the inside. Cutting of the tip. He passed on to Orion and took the other one for himself. “Pipe circles onto the baking sheet, making them thick.” Ephraim showed Orion what he meant, with six perfect circles. “They don't need to be pretty to taste good.” “I'll try.” Orion squeezed the bag to hard on the first two. Making them twice the size. Orion's tongue stuck out between his lips. With the next two, they were more oval than circle, but the last two weren't half bad. “Not bad.” Ephraim smiled. Taking the bag from his hands he finished off the tray. Tapping the baking sheet three times. On each side, getting rid of any air bubbles and preventing them from cracking. “We have to let the macrons sit in room temperature for about twenty minutes.” “Will we be making the cream filling then?” Orion asked with a tilt of his head. Nodding, together with a lot less of a mess than Ephraim had counted on. They combine chocolate chips and instant coffee together into a pot. Brought the whipping cream almost to a boil, add it to the chocolate chips. “Here.” Dipping his finger into the filling. Ephraim coated hi index finer in a chocolate coating, offering Orion a taste. Orion didn't hesitate to wrap his lips around his finger. Stroking his tongue around every groove f his knuckle before sliding his mouth off. “Delicious.” Orion said in a whisper. “Let me see.” Ephraim stole Orion's lips. Sneaking his tongue into the small gap of his parted lips. He tasted the bitter grounds of coffee grounds. The sweet sweep of chocolate, that soothed the coffee before it turned to strong. Finishing it was the natural salty taste of Orion moan. He cleaned his mouth out of any remaining cream. “Your right — It's delicious.” Ephraim said over Orion's lips when he left the moist swipe across them. “Now let's get the cookies baking.” Twirling Orion around for he was in front of the oven he slid the cookies in to bake. Orion took a bathroom break. Ephraim took the chance to clean up the left over ingredients and dishes on the kitchen table. Doing the same thing he did for the cookie batter with the filling. Ephraim had the bags filled and resting in a cup, ready to pipe onto some cookies. “There done?” Orion came back right as Orion pulled the cookies from the oven. They were a soft glossy sand brown. There shinny caps were a sign they were well done. “Do you want to try piping the macrons?” Ephraim nodded while he spoke. Orion shook his head. Shrugging Ephraim grabbed the piping bag. Piping cream onto one of the macron pieces and cover it with the other piece. A soft clicking sound gave away why Orion was not helping with the piping. “There ready to eat.” Orion came over and snatch one of the cookies he made. His camera back wound his neck and his shades on his head. Ephraim didn't say a word, and took one of Orion's large creations. Biting into it. The sough was underdone, way to soft and wet. Ephraim finished it off anyway. It tasted like his kiss with Orion earlier, and there was no way he would waste any of that....
The Bunny Hill Horror by redruM-110
Talking Skull“Let me out, I want to feel the sunlight,” it echoed loudly. Ophelia turned around, startled by the sudden voice. She stopped typing and locked eyes with the hollow eye sockets. Silence for a brief moment. She returned to her work. “Don’t ignore me,” it voiced. “Dammit, Ophelia, I can’t take it watching you slouching like that typing away like a madwoman,” She continued to ignore him. “I’ve been sitting here for days with nothing to stare at but your bony back. C’mon, take me out. Please, please, please! I can’t stand it here and I need someone to scratch my nose... oh, wait. I don’t have one anymore. But I still feel the itch. It's like a bug crawling. Nasty,” “Shut up,” Ophelia said. “Ophelia,” “Don’t say my name,” “Ophelia,” “Stop it before I bash your head in,” “Ha! I dare you!” “Annoy me one more time and I’ll do it,” “We haven’t known each other long but I know you have a quick temper. But annoying is good fun. What else can I do when I’m stuck here staring at you and the darkness all the time?” Ophelia stood up and went to the kitchen. “Hey! Stop! At least take me with you!” Ophelia grunted in frustration, snarling. She marched up to the skull and picked it up from the mantel. “Finally, a little movement!” it exclaimed. “Your hands feel good,” Ophelia stared at it in anger. “Don’t look at me like that, I was just lonely,” She raised a brow, an idea flickering. “Lonely?,” “You don’t talk to me,” “I don’t like conversations,” “It’s just talking,” She stared at him, her eyes dim and dull. It was like staring at a corpse. “I can make a way so you won’t stop bothering me.” Ophelia put the skull down on the table and despite its protests she went to her room and got dressed. She was fast as if she was running late for something, rushing out to the door and slamming it close behind her. The skull lamented as silence filled the apartment, facing the door and waiting. The sun had set when Ophelia returned and she had someone with her, to the skull’s surprise. She was a beautiful woman with golden hair and a smile that was contagious. Her eyes beamed a hazel shade of kindness that could put a person at ease. The skull’s interest peaked and he eyed the woman and Ophelia as Ophelia took the woman’s coat and hung it on the coat rack. “Ophelia! Who’s this? A friend?” It asked. Ophelia ignored it. The woman didn’t hear it. The two women were having a conversation before going to the kitchen. The skull couldn’t hear what they were saying. Just mumbles, barely catching words. It wanted to join in but something snapped at the back of its head. The skull suddenly felt something was off. It was certain that the two were having a lively conversation when all of a sudden, a piercing silence overwhelmed the whole atmosphere. A heavy veil of impending doom seized it as it heard light and slow footsteps tap away eerily on the wooden floor board. Ophelia, with her raven hair falling beautifully down her shoulders, emerged from the kitchen. And when she faced the skull, it saw a diagonal splatter of blood all over her face. She was holding a large butcher knife bathed in blood. “Ophelia!” The skull shrieked. Ophelia picked him up and it felt her icy cold hands warmed with the sticky liquid. It shuddered as she took him to her room and into the bathroom. When she opened the door, a horrid stench blew out like smoke and attacked all its senses. Ophelia was not bothered and she stepped in with the frightened skull and she placed it on a shelf facing the tub that was hidden by a black shower curtain. “Ophelia, what’s happening?” It shuddered, unable to move, staring at the back of her head. She looked at him, emotionless. “You won’t be alone anymore,” She exited the bathroom and moments later the skull heard scuffles, a horrible sound of a heavy object being dragged. It was frightened beyond measure, wishing it could run away, but was trapped. Then Ophelia came into view and she had dragged the body of the woman to the tub. The skull screamed in blood curdling horror as the blonde woman’s neck was sliced in half, nearly decapitated, and the look of anguish in her eyes forced the skull into shock. “You won’t be lonely,” Ophelia uttered as she raised the butcher knife. And with one strong strike, sliced the woman’s head clean off. The skull could do nothing but watch as she began carving the skin of the woman’s face, taking it apart piece by piece; cutting off her scalp to reveal the smooth surface of the bone, then gouging out the eyes before ripping apart the rest of the skin until the skull was left. Then to finish what she started, she took out all its contents by hand, squishing every organ and tugging at every nerve until she had managed to snatch the brain. It was a massacre on the bathroom floor as the blood pool erased the white tiles. Ophelia smiled, admiring her handiwork, the skull perfectly intact. She set it aside before grabbing the bathroom curtains and pulling it open. The skull’s jaw dropped at the sight of another decapitated body lying on the tub. It was the body of a male, its clothes still intact – a business suit. And it was rotting horribly, maggots filling in the holes. Ophelia scooped up the remaining contents of the woman and dumped her into the tub until the floor was clear of flesh. Then she picked up the skull of the woman that was partially clean off blood and picked up the skull of her other victim back to the living room. The skull cried in her hands and it heard the wails of a woman. Ophelia placed them back on the mantle side by side and she smiled as the two trapped souls wept. “You’re not alone anymore.”...

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Recalled to LIfe Chapter 12 by MisterMistoffelees
TMOAAD: Reading Ch. 6 Art of persuasion6Art of persuasionAlastar, Devlin and Ian ran quickly to get to Woodstock later that same afternoon. The lead pup wanted to collect The Third Way so he could persuade Barry and Derry enough not to tell Fiona when she got home around dinner. As he ran through the thicket like a marathon runner, the tan spaniel thought of how he could persuade Terry to lend him the book, or outright buy the book so that he and his brothers had all the time to decipher it for his newspaper as was the deal the group had made with Florry. “*Gasp* wait up! *Gasp* Ian begged as he was far behind. Alastar was so focus, he did not realize that he was leaving his runt brother behind. He did not want him getting lost in the woods—thus slowing him down so he rushed back to his aid, “Are you okay Ian?” “Yeah…just…give me…a…moment.” Devlin started to head off, “I’ll run ahead. I’ll meet you guys dere.” Ian had other plans, “You guys…go on ahead…without me. I’ll…slow you guys…down…I’ll talk to…the…cousins…” The elder brother then knew his plan, “Good idea! You go persuade dem while we git da book.” The youngster then raced to catch up with Devlin at Woodstock. In Woodstock, the streets had harriers going on their business, but no signs of Terry’s group. Alastar assumed he and his brood where still at school so he and Devlin made their way to the library. As they walked, each passerby harriers glanced at them as if they were personae non gratae. The tan pup remembered that Woodstock was made up of a single family. The community was close knitted, and everyone knew each other. So, when complete strangers—especially non-harriers entered their domain. They are immediately spotted as such. This made sense why the harriers were looking at them. Two spaniel pups easily stood out from a crowd of harriers—even more so since there were no crowds of harriers populating the streets. The duo made it to the library. The door was open, and the two entered. From there they were greeted by a receptionist behind the front counter, “Hello! Are you two looking for Terry’s brood?” Alastar was surprised she knew he was looking for them, “Are dey here?” “Yes, they come here after school to do their homework.” Terry came out of the main hall to greet them, “I thought I heard you guys! What’re you doing here? Working on your article?” “Yes,” Devlin answered, “But, we want to check out da book, so we won’ come back ‘n’ ford.” “Well, the book had become popular here in Woodstock that my cousin is using it to make more copies to distribute around Sangen.” “Can’ you git a copy fwom a local libwary?” “Crossfield doesn’t have any, nor does Burrow.” Alastar stepped in, “We jus’ need it fer a few days, den we’ll weturn it.” “Are you going to have the publisher make copies of the book just like your article?” “No, we need it to write our article fer publishin’.” “Do you make any money for publishing?” Alastar then realized that Terry will inevitably find out about his deal with Florry, so he gave it to him straight, “Devlin, Ian ‘n’ myself made a deal wid da owner called, Florry. We’re to wite an article every day excep’ weeken’s fer over six hundwed a week.” “SIX HUNDRED a week! Why didn’t you include us in your deal then!? We helped you write that article!” Alastar tried to placate him, “Dat was da original plan, but Florry wouldn’ let us wecruit you. He sez dat only dwee are needed to wite an article.” “Sounds like a total rip-off!” “Yes,” Alastar grew impatient, and pressed him for the book, “So, could we borrow da book den? We’ll returned it after a couple o’ days.” “Doesn’t your school, or your local town’s library have one? Can’t you get a copy from there instead? Because we do need it for our own news to spread. Once we have copies, then we’ll give it to you.” Devlin cut in, “Soun’s like you also made a deal widout us as well! Dat makes us even!” “We don’t make money off of ours.” Alastar tried to reason with the vivid harrier, “Look, our cousins are sympathetic wid da proletariat, an’ knows our plan. Dey’ll tell Fiona, an’ she’ll twy to stop us. We don’ have da time to go dere.” Terry pieced together the situation, “As I recall what you told me earlier, your sister, Fiona wrote a proletariat article that’s influencing everyone at your school? And you, need the book right away before your cousins tell Fiona of your plans? How did they know of your plans to begin with?” Devlin answered him, “Dey were wid us when dad dwop us off at da newspaper company.” “That makes sense now that you put it that way…”At the manor Ian went to find Barry and Derry. The two were heading downstairs when they crossed paths with Ian. Derry looked up, “Hi, Ian.” “Hello,” Ian was not expecting to bump into the duo, “Uh, can you two meet me in the living room? I have to tell you something.” “Oh, okay, sure.” The small spaniel allowed the two to pass before he walked upstairs to get the copies of Alastar’s article in his room. He then proceeded back to Derry and Barry. “Wot izzit you wan’ed to tell us?” Derry inquired.Ian thought a moment how to articulate his words, “It’s about this proletariat talk.” “Oh yes,” he began, “Fiona’s paper weally opened our eyes ‘bout da world view!” “Where is Fiona? I don’t smell her.” “Uncle Lenny wen’ to pick her up.” Ian was aware that meant his dad since they were their uncle in their point of view. He knew time was short, and pressed the issue quickly, “I noticed all this pros. talk had a real influence—not just between you two, but the whole school.” “Wecen’ events at BaKellry showed how flawed the current economic system is.”Barry pointed out, “Wot’s dat yer holdin’?” This was Ian’s chance to begin persuading them with the article, “Oh, this? Well…speaking of flawed,” he chose his words carefully, so as not have the pup duo be suspicious of him for being part of Alastar’s group, “I suspect that that the pros. doctrine is flawed and misunderstood.” “Wot do you mean?” “Well, Fiona’s article talks about how oppressive the capitalistic system is, but I think they mistook it for cronyism.” “Capitalism?” Derry questioned, “Wot dat? Her article talks ‘bout da tywanny of bourgeoisie.” “Well, uh, they’re synonyms.” “So,” Barry started, “Wots cwonyism?” “It’s someone putting family and friends in a position of power to further their agenda.”Derry cut in, “Wot does dis have to do wid pros. doctrine bin’ flawed?” “Right, to the point. Fiona’s article discussed that the bourgeois oppressed the workers by making them worked to death, so they don’t have to. And used the money they’d made to expand their business. But, the problem with that is they combine wealth and power of the corporate elite influence the lives of people is cronyism. Capitalism, which the pros. are against, is an exchange of goods and services without government interference.” Barry tried to sum up what Ian told them, “So, cwonyism is like an exchange o’ goods, ‘n’ service wid big business interference?” “Uh, yeah. Something like that.” “So, when da pros. say dey’re against bourgeois—dey actually meant dey’re against cwonyism?” Derry examined. Ian realize that if he could not persuade them into his groups fold, then at least he could get them to refocus their ire to their perceived common foe, “Yes! Now you starting to get it!” Sometime later, Alastar and Devlin returned with their book. The two found the three in the living room, “Okay,” Alastar started, “We’ve got da book.” Derry pointed out, “Wot dat?” “Dat’s Da Dird Way. We used dis to help wite our article.” “Wozzit ‘bout?” Barry requested. “I’ll show you,” Alastar opened to the pages he felt was most important. He showed the pups the survival-of-the-fittest analogy part as well as how the proletariat system undermines this by forcing two different groups to share the same niche resulting in a deficient of resources—causing in both groups to be unfit. Alastar wanted to clarify the misconceptions of cronyism and capitalism—but realized that the author also made the same mistake of confusing cronyism for capitalism. He felt that if he denied the curious pup duo the next part of the book, they would become suspicious of him, and therefore, unpersuaded. He ultimately showed them the passage before explaining, “Da audor o’ da book also made da same mistake of mistookin’ capitalism fer cwonyism.” “So dat’s wot dat Florry was sayin’.” Derry pieced together, “It’s starin’ to make sence now!” “So,” Barry began, “Is cwonyism da one dat exploits da workers den?” “Well…uh…not directly…” Alastar trailed off. “Wait,” Derry motioned, “If life is ‘bout survival o’ da fittest, den is ‘cwonyism’ natuwal?” Alastar heard his father arriving—meaning Fiona is home. He tried to wrap the conversation up, “I don’ know. Dat’s a good question. You should learn dis ‘n’ judge fer yerselves wots alla dis ‘bout.” “Dat’s a good idea, but later. It’s almos’ dinner time. I c’n hear Lenny commin’ wid Fiona.” “Speakin’ o’ which, don’ mention wot I’ve told you to Fiona. She’ll try to sabotage our work.” Barry questioned, “Should Fiona know ‘bout mistakin’ capitalism fer cwonyism?” “No! It’s too risky. She’s already deeply entangled in its teachin’s.” “Well…okay den…” Alastar’s mother called out that it is almost dinner time and had them wash up before it’s ready.
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Are you ready to take the next step? We know you're serious about writing and we are too. For our brave writers who are looking to get their start in the world of professional publishing, we will be gathering up a list with a handful of publications that are accepting submissions each month.

Since we're in the eleventh hour of the month, we're listing publication with deadlines in the next few weeks.

There are countless literary journals and anthologies accepting submissions out there, but a good number of them charge a reading fee. However, since a good many of us are early in our writing careers and often do not have the funds for paying submission fees, we will only list publications that do not charge a reading fee.

We list the name of the journal, the submission deadline, what type of literature they're looking for, and if they are a paying market or not. We encourage going to each website individually to read submission guidelines.

:bulletblue: Publishing Opportunities :bulletblue:

Name of journal: Broken Eye Books
Deadline: June 30th
Media: Fiction
Market: Paying

Name of journal: Organic Lifestyles Magazine
Deadline: Rolling basis
Media: Articles
Market: Paying
Website: www.organiclifestylemagazine.c…

Name of journal: Bare Fiction
Deadline: June 5th
Media: Fiction, poetry, theater
Market: Non-paying

:? What does no simultaneous submissions mean? This journal mentions that they do not accept simultaneous submissions; this means that they are asking you to submit your work only to them and to no one else until they've given you a response.

Name of journal: Track//Four
Deadline: June 6th
Media: Poetry
Market: Non-paying

:bulletred: Our Advice!

While it's definitely tempting to only submit to journals that pay their contributors, it's a slow and tedious process to develop a library of publications that can require making literally hundreds of submissions. We highly recommend submitting to both journals that pay and those that don't, for getting your name out there and having a publication to list on your resume or CV is always worth something.

You may have several pieces published with non-paying journals and though you won't see the money then, there's always the very high possibility that having those publications on your resume will be a key thing discussed at that job interview you're waiting for, or something to highlight in that scholarship application you're working on.

Happy writing and submit with confidence!
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AnnaZLove Featured By Owner 2 days ago  Hobbyist General Artist
Hello! Do you accept these kinds of articles?  The article 3 (E) - AWAKENINGInformation. Education. Mental practices.Available in Russian and English AWAKENING Hello, dear friends! Before I begin my story, I want to note that the knowledge I share comes from the original source – my higher Self and the teaching system, which is part of the Creator. These are not egregors thought forms or information received from others. Note that the information I receive is not directly available to everyone, it depends, figuratively speaking, on the individual built-in antenna and a sincere desire to turn it on. Nevertheless, a lot of people have this antenna, but they don't know how to use it. I am not engaged in channeling, I get independent information and answers to my questions only when I express my intention. Also (I think this is a more important aspect than others), people who receive higher spiritual knowledge are obliged to share this knowledge with others. It is not necessary to carry it in huge masses, but we must transfer it to at least one person, otherwise there may be "acidulation" of communication channels, and a person loses the ability to communicate with higher energies. Let's go to the main part. Imagine a pyramid. The base is our perception of ourselves, and the top is the true state of things. I'll start at the top. My dear friends, for many this will be a brain explosion, but sooner or later you will still come to the realization of what I am about to say. We are just energy, light, vibration, which is being observed. In quantum physics, there is a theory called the "Observer effect" (Hawthorne effect), which is when observing a phenomenon or a particular particle inevitably changes its parameters. So, we are these particles - rotating tetrahedrons and photons that form the Merkaba. And biological avatars are the programs that affect our perception of each other. Yes, for us they are totally real, but it is like living in a dream, at that moment our consciousness perceives the dream as the only true reality. If we explain this in familiar language, the structured souls are computer programs consisting of numbers, letters, and icons. This is how operators (the subtle structures of the material world that are our "architects") see us. They themselves are also programs, but basic, written in 0-1 code. When we come out of the body shell, our codes, figuratively speaking, break down into basic ones. Then the operators write a new program for us, and we come back in a new design quality. The game itself, where the holographic characters pass through the levels, is the illusion in which our consciousness arrives. Therefore, awakened people do not just know about it, but feel themselves like the structured energy of the Absolute. They pass into a new quality of consciousness and literally become citizens of several worlds. Fears disappear, opportunities expand, and people enjoy every moment, allowing the Absolute to live a bright, rich life through avatars. Any experience loses its division into good and bad. And although our consciousness still catches the negative signals of the biological body (feels pain, hunger, discomfort), it no longer perceives it tragically, but perceives it from the position of an operator who can adjust the program. Dear friends, I have given a schematic, very crude example, but in time you will begin to see the whole picture in its true light. This image will be as clear to you as now you see the grass, the sky, the city... Believe me, I've been through it all. I was twenty-one when a one higher civilization decided to show me the structure of our planetary system. My husband then said that I, standing at the window, suddenly fell into a trance for five minutes. I was breathing, blinking, even reacting to his touch, but otherwise I looked like a wax figure Madame Tussaud's. Then I really experienced astral travel outside of time and space. Having moved away from the Earth at a decent distance (this is a conditional concept), I saw our solar system as if on a TV screen. The stars were gone, but I felt that their energy was present in an unmanifested form. All the planets, including the sun and moon (they are considered planets in Astrology) turned into luminous balls. Each had its own color spectrum and pulsed in a different key. It looked like the human chakra system (by the way, I did not know anything about the chakras at that time). The Earth was shrouded in a luminous Golden net. Later I learned that this grid is the magnetic grid of the Earth and it is synchronized with our corporal avatars. In fact, this grid is responsible for our health and the health of the Earth at a dense level. Let’s continue. What prevents our awakening? First of all, it's fears. They can be manifest (they are much easier to work with) and unmanifested, that is, located in our subconscious. But since there is a category of fears that is necessary for people of three-dimensional consciousness, we cannot get rid of all the "anchors" at once. As you move toward awakening, many fears will be erased automatically. However, you need to start with trust in yourself and the Universe. There are many different practices for balancing this part of the energy, but you must always choose the one that resonates with you, upon acquaintance with which your intuition will tell you "Yes". Also, let your operators (the teacher system, the higher Self, the guardian angels) synchronize the situation so that the necessary practice simply manifests itself in your life. Let's move on to the concept of "allow". To allow is to have an intention. I have already said that you should always express your intention. But thoughts and words coming from the brain are not our intention. True intent is in the heart and it advertises our sincere willingness to act to achieve the goal. Note, not to receive a gift like manna from heaven, but to act. I'll give you one example. You have a cold with a high temperature. Getting sick is not a pleasant event, so it is natural that your brain will be set up against the disease. However, there is a secondary benefit hidden in your subconscious – the disease gives you a mental rest from a job you don't like, for example. In this case, the person will recover for a long time, because his true intention is not to recover, but to rest. By the way, all types of colds usually originate from a subconscious desire to avoid responsibility or trouble, to hide from any problem. Therefore, children often get sick in those families where scandals occur, the kids just hide from the situation they hate. But if you are a mother of three small children and wish them happiness and prosperity with all your heart, then you will recover in a few days, if you do not "erase" the disease in a few hours at all. And this is a real example from my life, showing how intent works. A few years ago, I suffered a serious muscle injury because I ignored the warning of my guardian angels. And in order to protect me from more serious consequences, they made me "hard format", in other words, confined me to bed. Of course, after thanking the angels from the bottom of my heart and promising that I would no longer ignore their concern, I calmly began to work out my mistake. However, my mother, without realizing it, expressed her intention to take the mission of my accelerated recovery on herself, which in the our reality was voiced by the following phrase "Anna, you will be helped quickly to get back on your feet by strong stress". Her spiritual curators accepted this mission gladly and, adding bonuses to my mother's karma, carried out the intention. As a result, the next day my mother went to the hospital. And what do you think now? My mother was right. I, accordingly, having a sincere willingness to help her in everything (intention), briskly, like a goat, rushed to the hospital and spent almost the whole day there, completely forgetting about my own indisposition. Of course, before that, I took painkillers (rupture in muscle tissue is very painful!), but my husband still doesn't understand how I managed to get out of bed. Sincere intent works wonders, dear ones! The second essential part of the path to Awakening is love. My dear friends, don't confuse it with attachment and passion. True love is not associated with the pain of loss and desires, especially carnal ones. True love is present in our heart regardless of the circumstances, you can even feel it physically, as something hot in the solar plexus or as a motivating force to do something gratuitously for other people. Almost everyone who lets this energy into their heart begins to cry involuntarily at the initial stage. Don't be afraid of it. In this way, the physical cleansing of toxins and alignment of our subtle energy plans (bodies) takes place. You begin to feel relieved, as if you've lifted an impossible burden. Allow yourself to enjoy this cleansing process. Love also erases our fears, negative thoughts, and karmic blocks. (Karmic blocks are programs that prevent the expansion of consciousness and not allowing us to believe that we can be operators of our lives.) People often say, "make room in your heart for love". It is in the heart (fourth) chakra Anahata that love is born. This is the borderline chakra that unites the physical and spiritual aspects of a person. Growing, the energy of love rises higher and turn the throat (fifth) chakra Vishuddha on, which is responsible for intuition, creativity, beliefs and communication with the higher Self. In the same way, the sixth chakra Ajna (third eye) is activated, which makes a person develop the ability to clairvoyance and healing. This chakra allows us to see the world as divine, non-distorted, not as our three-dimensional thinking usually presents us. And if the seventh chakra Sahasrara is activated, then the person reaches spiritual enlightenment. When all seven chakras work in maximum mode, a person passes into the guna of goodness (sattva-guna), he begins to live consciously, in harmony with the world and himself. But there is another chakra – the eighth, it is located in the unmanifested field of human, and just its opening leads to Samadhi (Awakening). In this case, the person energetically merges with the energies of the Universe and during meditation can reach the Nirvana. But most importantly, his attitude to life and to himself becomes completely different. Moreover, the awakened people are not obliged to practice yoga, they just begin to live in accordance with the divine plan and get real pleasure from life. But most often it is through meditation, especially through ancient yoga techniques, that it is easier for a person to come to Awakening. I note that this requires a teacher (guru) who not only knows these practices but is dedicated to them. Otherwise, yoga will only be a health-improving exercise for you. I will explain that the chakras are never turned on chaotically, as some healers claim. They turn on from the bottom up, and when turned off, they slow down their rotation from the top down. The chakras never can be completely disconnected, at least a small flow of energy, but it passes through them, although this is not enough for good health. Especially bad for physical health, if there is a problem with the three lower chakras. The eighth chakra is completely disabled. And you can start it if the other seven chakras are working at full power. Treatment of the chakras can be found on the Internet. There are many ways: color therapy, emotional therapy, theta rhythms (music), acupuncture, bioresonance, minerals, etc. I will answer your silent question right away. I don't practice yoga. I opened all my seven chakras with just one intention. But my eighth chakra is still closed, meaning I didn't reach yet the Awakening. And the third is a sense of freedom. Our thinking, contaminated by fears, prejudices, and misguided beliefs, limits our capabilities. We put barriers to ourselves, having a fear for our lives or fearing to go beyond comfort. Here are a few common beliefs that literally poison our lives: I am too old to go in for sports, start studying, understand something specific, etc.; genetic diseases and cancer are incurable; the world is hostile and unfair; everything that is unproven by scientists is a lie; without material wealth, we cannot be happy... It should be understood that while we have a corporal shell (the program for the biological body), then, no matter how much we believed that the bullet never go through our bodies, this does not work, the bullet can come into our body like a knife in butter. But we can correct the program with our pure intention, and then the bullet (by chance, as many will believe) will not touch the vital organs, and we will survive. Note that it is not always possible to rewrite karma. The ability to rewrite it should also be considered in the program. As a rule, the main events, as well as the time and method of leaving the dense plan are written in the Contract of the soul. Contract of the soul is the commitment we made before the incarnation. Yes, we participate in writing our karma, just as we choose our avatar. Remember the analogy I used with a computer game? So, the avatars of all the manifested and unmanifested worlds for past, present and future incarnations were created simultaneously. It's like characters in different games, they are always present. It's just that some are being used now, others are still untouched, and there are those that are temporarily forgotten. By the way, we can contact any civilization, even an ancient one and one that is not yet in the concept of our linear perception of time, because they all already EXIST. Let's go back to freedom. The flexibility of our thinking and neuro-linguistic programming (affirmations) help us get it. Flexibility of thinking develops well when we periodically immerse ourselves in children's perception of the world. Try to remember what it felt like to climb to the top of a tree as a child. Were you afraid of falling? Did the height frighten you? Did you think it would be difficult for you? Did you have any thoughts about how your parents would react? Why now, when we take on something new, often tell ourselves that we will not be able to solve this problem, look back at the reaction of other people, and fear their judgment? With this approach, we are unlikely to be lucky. Children's perception of events, when there are sincere intentions to achieve what they want without looking at past experiences and predicting future options, is something that modern people lack so much. By the way, it is the level of flexibility of thinking that will determine whether affirmations work for you or not. The fact is that we are usually influenced by what we believe in. Athletes would never set records if they doubted their abilities. Let's sum up. The first and main steps to the Awakening are to get rid of fears and inertia of thinking, self-belief and acceptance of divine plans, selfless love, freedom of choice and pure intention. Dear friends, the Awakening not only opens our eyes to reality, but allows us to escape from the wheel of Samsara. And already on the way to the Awakening, our attitude to life begins to change dramatically for the better. With infinite love, Anna))) ------ 
klassikov Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2020  Student
(OPEN) KLASSIKOV'S Writing Commissions!Hello everyone! I'm putting up my own writing commissions! I figured that I enjoy writing and illustrating characters through words a lot, so maybe I could make a profit from it. I don't ask much since I only do this as a hobby."If you're having trouble laying down your own interesting story into meaningful and effective words, then maybe it's time to commission me."PREVIOUS WORKSI write poems and short stories. I write in both the first and third point-of-view (POV). You could view my works over my blog, but in my opinion, the finest of my works are:Silentsong: An Oriole's Cast AOut of the ShellMargaret's EyesThe Fountainhead AA = FINEST FINEYou could view the other poems and short stories once you have opened a link, but please refer to the upload date when reading it. Free verse poems and short stories that were posted from 2019 to 2020 exemplify what I can do. If you encounter a post from 2016, please neglect that, as I've only started writing.PRICESFor poems, $5 / 500 points per piece. For stories, $2.50 / 250 points per 200 words. I accept money payments through PayPal ONLY.QUESTIONSIn what aspect are you most skilled at? I'm very skilled at character creation in the fantasy genre. I'm also very skilled at describing the appearance of a specific character. I also try my hand at children's storytelling. What themes do you not write on? I don't write poems or stories that are NSFW. I also don't write with anthropomorphic characters, but maybe we could negotiate. Note that I could refuse to take your order without giving out any reason. If I want to commission you, what do I need to provide? You must provide (1) synopsis/plotline, (2) characters, (3) setting, (4) ending (optional), and (5) length of the story. Most importantly, your guidance. As I write I will be sending drafts to you, and I need to know if you're fine with the flow I have written.I want you to write a story with my OC. What do I need to provide? Aside from what I mentioned above, you need to tell me details about your OC. I'm not sure what to ask, but I'm pretty sure you, the client, will know what to tell me about them. If I need further information about your OC, I'll send you a note.What if I choose an unfamiliar setting/timeline? You need to tell me what I should research, but make sure that I don't do a ton of research.What is the maximum length of each order you'll be accepting? For now, I'm only accepting orders with a length of 5000 words.Will I still be allowed to withdraw my order and get a refund once you have started writing? No, I will not be refunding any payments.How long does it take you to work on each piece? Since I have other priorities such as school work, it will probably take me a week or two to finish a piece. Otherwise, if the order is complex, then maybe over a month.When will you start working on my order? I need you to pay me partially before I start working on your order. Before I show you the final draft, I need you to send me the remaining payment.Thank you!
SalyaDarken Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2020  Hobbyist Artist
I'm looking for writers to come join my forum and help bring it some life or light. lol
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