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Literature
A Shot in Time
She hated them all- nobles for their yawns, guards for their glee, and children for their fascination. Alixia's bound hands twitched. While a hooded man slipped rope around her neck, she imagined them all burning. If their fears would kill her, she wished she could justify them first.
Somewhere, behind the crowd, something roared. Alixia's brow furrowed. Before she could see the reason for people's sudden panic, however, the support beneath her feet dropped.
Green lightning flashed over her head. The witch fell…
...and did not stop until her body thudded against dirt. She had a moment to roll and see charred rope dangling before everything went mad.
People screamed. Arrows flew. The roaring grew ever louder, until two warriors burst through on a headless steed of metal and wheels. They swerved by the gallows, and one leaned to catch Alixia's outstretched arms and swing her in front of him.
She landed painfully on the seat. When he untied her, she only questioned their motives.
Th
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Literature
Love That Stays
It was a dreary thing, being a ghost, but Regina made do. She was the one who had fought to stay behind, so she was the one to blame if the lack of an afterlife became a trifle boring. Instead of moping about, she busied herself by looking after the affairs of her house. Heaven knew Norman was hopeless with a duster. It hadn’t been a problem, before he starting sending the maid away.
Tucking wisps behind her ears, Regina looked at the slumbering lump of a man and tutted. He still kept to the far side of the bed. “Come, dear.” She folded the bedspread away from his shoulders. “While there’s still some morning left.”
His face scrunched where the sun touched it, and he gripped his pillow stubbornly. “Too soon, Regi,” he grumbled. “G’sleep.”
She waited, watching him while the silence stretched on.
It was the lack of a reply that finally stirred him. Dark eyes opened, framed by faint lines and a fringe of graying hair. They l
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Literature
Losing Touch
I haven't attended one of your concerts in twenty years. Before I even reach my seat, I know that was a mistake. Colors pulse in time to beats. The air is perfumed with strawberries and mint, charged with just enough additive to turn your audience's excitement into thrill. And there you stand at the head of it all, looking a year older if that, your lyrics mixing with laughter.
Ever since scientists learned to slow aging from a sprint to a crawl, people have generally been more relaxed. Why not? There's more time to think, more time to choose, more time to live.
But not you. You pace the stage with frantic energy, and I can hear your voice strain.
It's an hour before your show ends, and another half before the crowd clears out. Even then, it's only after you promise to follow with autographs and party favors. You watch them file out with a cocked smile. You've got a woman clinging to either arm. I know they're part of your staff, though, when they have to guide you to the stage's edge
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Literature
Super Science Bros
Thomas sniffled, tissue in one hand and wrench in the other. He didn't even notice when he wiped his nose with the latter by mistake. “Okay, Bobbie.” His voice quavered. “You win! I-I'm sorry I broke your new transporter. I just really wanted to see if it would work on my plasma gun, because it was so cool. And I'm supposed to ask first, but I thought you'd be mad, and now you're even madder…”
He hesitated, neck craned as he stared up at the lump of covers on the top bunk. “Can we go back to being brothers again? Pretty please?”
The covers rustled before jerking to cover a tuft of red hair.
Thomas hugged his slimy wrench. “Bob-bieeeee. Please talk to meeeeeee. I don't wanna go to the science fair alone!”
Three floors down, Lawrence tapped one of the monitors covering the lab's wall. The feed was set to visual only. “I dunno, man. Kid looks pretty upset. I think he's crying or something.” He glanced over his shoulder.
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Literature
Regroup
“Okay, team. Before anyone else does anything stupid, I think we all need to sit back, take a nice, deep breath and take stock of our assets.”
A scruffy blond stared back at her. He held up his arms. “What assets?”
Semi-permanent Marker Woman blinked. “Well, ah, our assets. You know. What we’ve got going for us. As a team.”
“What team?” He looked back at the demolished landscape, spreading out for miles of city-scented dust. There had been so many things he had wanted to save in New York. The one he got to keep was the permeating smell of diesel fuel and day-old dreams.
“At least I’m trying,” Perma snapped. “There’s two of us, which is technically enough. And we’re still alive, so that’s something.”
“Fine, let’s list our assets.” Snail Boy made a line through the silver silt with his finger. “You can draw on any of the nothing around us, and I can command
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Literature
Don't Follow
They wait nine hours. The signal for backup never comes.
They find half of her across the clearing from her rover, circled by a sea of unidentifiable tracks. Whatever came for her, there were hundreds.
Her communicator is off, and they find its batteries tucked in her pocket. Her fingers curl over a rosary instead.
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Literature
Find Her
Rap, rap, rap.
You knock on the towering door. In seconds, you see the entryway light flicker on.
They told you to wait. They told you to stay away, but you can't. You have to make sure she's alright. You need to see her. So as steps come closer, you decide.
Forward – move to Hallway.
Up – move to Window.
Hallway
You press against the door and step in as it opens. Your hand covers the butler's mouth, and your knife jabs between his ribs. You push forward, forward, forward until he sinks back, back, back. The knife is in deep, so you let him keep it.
Find her – move to Study.
 
Window
You play a little ding-dong-ditch and scale the side of the house while the butler is distracted. Silently, you slip through the second-story window and find yourself at the end of a corridor that stretches into darkness, doors lining either side.
Find her – move to Bedrooms.
Find her – move to Stairs.  
Bedrooms
You open each door in turn
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Literature
Say It with Flowers
Rose found it difficult, at times, to speak eloquently with all of the petals and jewels that dribbled from between her lips. The fairy who had blessed her had been very sweet, but Rose couldn't help thinking she might have breathed in too much pixie dust over the years. Who in their right mind had ever wished to speak in flowers?
Still, if her mother hadn't panicked and kicked her out, Rose would never have met her prince. She supposed that was worth picking diamonds out of her teacup every time she complimented the server.
Randolph was such a sweetheart about the whole thing. He had no need for more fineries, so she knew he truly wanted to hear her thoughts when he listened. And since speaking all day long could leave her mouth rather sore, he worked with her to develop a kind of shorthand for brief replies. Rose practiced day in and day out- to the point that servants were taking baskets of posies and pearls home with them- until she mastered her gift. Randolph, in kind, pored over
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Literature
Curtain Call
Hot tears roll down Karissa's cheeks as she watches everyone- friends, reporters, teachers- flock to Terra. They hang a gold medal around the girl's neck, completely forgetting about the girl with scraped, stinging knees who stands to the side, fingers clutching a participation badge in a death grip. Karissa's mouth tastes dry and sour.
Terra has the gall to pull away from her stolen attention. She waves and trots over to her family on the sidelines. Little priss, acting like she doesn't love it.
Who wouldn't?
Karissa is about to go drag her so called 'friends' out of the crowd so they can leave when a finger taps her shoulder. She looks back to see a boy with kind eyes and dark hair.
“That was some fall, wasn't it?” He smiles as she flusters. “No, really- I mean it. You caught yourself beautifully, and you still finished top ten. That's incredible!”
The words are better than salve. She stands straighter. “It was pretty good, wasn't it?”
“Yeah!
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Literature
A Word With the Author
“So. May I have a weapon this time? I rather like staying un-skewered.”
Yeah, sure. Why not?
Silver light flashes in the hero's hand, forcing him to shield his eyes. It solidifies and stretches until he is holding an elegant, perfectly-balanced-
“A longsword? Really?” He holds it in front of him, eyeing the blade. “Last time you wrote me, you gave me a secret ending that hinted I was going to be some kind of explosions expert. Or at least proficient with thrown weapons. What's this generic nonsense?”
It's not generic! It's double-edged and everything. Obviously, it's a metaphor for how your heroic desires might one day fall back on you and-
“We could use explosions metaphorically, and that would be loads more fun. As would making explosions.” He leans a shoulder on his side of the screen and starts balancing the hilt on one finger. “You're saying this choice is purely creative, so I'm sure it has nothing to do w
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Literature
Spare Change
He wasn't sure why he bothered anymore. The brick was hard and cold against his back, and each passerby gave him something- from a few coins or a few dollars to curious or loathsome looks. They turned their heads uncomfortably, or suddenly switched their direction. He hated that the most- feeling like he was an obstacle to everyone.
We'd be better off without you clogging our streets, some seemed to think. Others said as much. At least they were honest about it.
Worthless. What have you ever done for anyone else?
He was sure he'd done something. It was impossible, wasn't it, to go through life without contributing anything? Surely, his family had once thought-
Get out of my sight! And this time, don't bother coming back.
He bowed his head. The metal cup shook in his hands.
Scammer.
Hobo.
Leech.
"...Sir?"
His thoughts were roiling too hard for the voice to break through. So when a soft clunk accompanied the sudden weight in his cup, he st
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Literature
Sock it to Me!
Dave knew he was in for a long day when he found his coworker wearing not only their standard Mr. Spudsy uniform- but a hot pink sock puppet as well. It swiveled to face him as he entered, and he sighed.
“Okay, Mitch.” He strolled to the front counter, still tying his apron. “Who's your friend?”
Mitch punched in another sale and smiled. “Oh hey, Dave. This is Lady Tubular, goddess queen of sock puppets. She digs you.”
His arm drifted forward while he talked. Mismatched blue and red buttons ogled up toward Dave, who raised an eyebrow. “Hi there, sweet cheeks!” The puppet swayed. “Come here often?”
Dave blinked. “You been practicing your ventriloquism again?”
“Not really. Why?”
“Hey!” The puppet's mouth flapped wide. “Don't you know it's rude to leave a lady without an answer?” A hoarse giggle came from it. “That's okay, though. I like 'em a little rude.”
Dave pushed it
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Literature
Waking Beauty
She doesn't remember anything, and he knows that makes it worse.
One moment, a light drew her attention, and the next she was waking up to him. Bruised, bloodied, singed and sweaty- he's sure he must have looked a fright, but she had smiled. Everything had seemed so perfect.
Then they had told her, and she became afraid. For what, she asked, was their proof the monster was truly dead? What assurance did they have that some fey would not steal her will again?
They had no answer. Still don't.
It isn't needles that scare her, or even the idea of sleep. She spends her evenings wandering the castle halls and memorizing every corner, every face, because she is terrified that one day she will wake to ruins and bones. She presses her lips to his each night. Just in case, she says. Just for luck.
He's happy to oblige, but he feels the thorns in her touch. They entangle her in his arms. Every night, she lies there until she believes he is asleep. Then she rises.
He wishes for all the world he co
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Literature
Ra's Glass Capades
Ra looked down from his sun-ly throne and scowled at yet another war the Egyptians had found themselves in. He couldn't leave them alone for five decades without something like this breaking out. Really, it was a headache to keep up with. Thus the sun deity decided it would be easier for everyone if he put a stop to it.
“Shu!” he screeched. “I need you to flatten the desert.”
The wind god folded his arms. “Wouldn't you rather I tell my son to do that?”
“No. He'll argue.”
Shu almost asked why, then decided Ra was looking a touch incandescent and shrugged. “As you wish.” With a sweep of his arms, he sent his winds to unfurl sand dunes into a level expanse. The winds also chucked a couple of tents and camels over the pyramids, but overall, it was a clean job.
“Excellent,” said Ra. He grinned and stretched out his palm.
Shu knew that look. “Ra, I know mortals can chafe, but do you really think that's necessary?
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Literature
An Internal Struggle
Meredith had assumed the leftmost head was already dead when she came across the hydra. It hung at the end of a drooping neck, scales clawed from its jaw and over one eye. She chalked it up to the same luck that let her find the beast on dry land.
She forgot about it once eight sets of eyes looked down. Taking up her sword, the woman whispered an incantation before rolling out of the way. Her blade ignited.
It would cauterize the wounds it made, so the hydra's acidic blood wouldn't spray over everything. She quite liked having un-melted limbs.
The first head fell within minutes. She took the center one, aiming to give herself space when they all lunged at once. Then she took the rightmost, because it caught her shield and would have torn her arm from its socket if she hadn't moved quickly. Remaining heads shrieked with each loss.
But they weren't weakening. Instead, their eyes glowed brighter for every set that dulled. They became more coordinated. Necks that ended in stumps were flung
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Literature
The Gardener's List
1. Pick up another set of mimosa saplings.
2. Begin planting the perennials - pastels to compliment the trellis.
3. Inform Mr. Brum his dog's "fertilizer" is not appreciated.  
4. Turn up dirt on either side of trellis.
5. Begin pruning the rose bushes - save brightest blooms for Mme.
6. Tend to delicate annuals   Return Mr. Brum's rabbits to him.
7. Pick up another set of annuals.
8. Clean up remains of perennials where Mr. Brum decided to jump his horse.
9. Pick up another set of perennials.
10. Plant annuals.
11. Plant perennials.
12. Plant Mr. Brum.
13. Present roses to Mme., trim with blue ribbon.
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Favourites

IN NO ONE WE TRUST by CherryVioletS IN NO ONE WE TRUST :iconcherryviolets:CherryVioletS 1,736 108
Literature
The Dreamer in the Dark
It took fifteen seconds for Gilgamesh to descend into the underworld. Thirty seconds to wrap the paquet congo—ebony, ochre, lavender—in the hopes that it would bring the loa to his aid. It will take him fifteen seconds to draw his sword, but his sword is missing.
It took fifteen seconds for Gilgamesh to descend into the underworld. Thirty seconds to wrap the paquet congo—ebony, ochre, mint—in the hopes that it would bring the loa to his aid. It will take him fifteen seconds to draw his sword, but his sword is missing.
It took fifteen seconds for Gilgamesh to descend into the underworld. Thirty seconds to wrap the paquet congo—ebony, ochre, nutmeg—in the hopes that it would bring the loa to his aid. It will take him fifteen seconds to draw his sword, but his sword is missing.
It took fifteen seconds for Gilgamesh to descend into the underworld. Thirty seconds to wrap the paquet congo—ebony, ochre, orange—in the hopes that it would bring th
:iconDamonWakes:DamonWakes
:icondamonwakes:DamonWakes 5 5
Literature
FFM31: Symphony of the Night
"Beloved," he says. He sighs.
Mena is afraid, more afraid than she has ever been.
He wears dark silks in rich blues, the delicate bones of a bird secured to the fabric. His skin is bloodless, pale, and his nails hooked like talons. He is like a piece torn from the night sky. Beautiful.
He looks heart broken.
"Just one kiss," he says. And it will be over.
One kiss. One time. She won't be weak, not again. His power will be hers. Ours, she thinks, ours.
She closes her eyes as he whispers her name.
She kisses him.
:iconNamelessShe:NamelessShe
:iconnamelessshe:NamelessShe 3 8
Literature
A Wisp of Song
A note steals at my lips –
A wisp of song –
Abloom with all the makings of a storm,
Ere I might choose, today, to sound it strong
And shatter the still space and hollow norm
Of my own stagnant ease.
And this, my guilt:
That I, who long to sing, have kept to form,
My lips the stone-carved etchings of my wit –
At once pursed with purpose,
And yet, forlorn –
By gaping silence held, in this, my core -
No more the rising tide of wonderment
That lingered easily on eyes new-born,
As their unbroken gaze
Shaped starry widths;
What dreams were mine
When dreams were wordless spun,
I cannot say –
I, who’ve unfaithful sworn
Oaths to the stoic vigil of the sun
Or moon, depending on the hour’s bend,
That I might scratch or slake
An idle whim;
As idle as a songbird in a cage -
A great and gilded thing of pure pretend -
With strange sensations of expectant thanks
That I should be so safe and warmly kept,
All while gratitude reached beyond my ken,
And hoping fri
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:icontimeraider:timeraider 3 6
Twist the Knife by Cronaj Twist the Knife :iconcronaj:Cronaj 42 17 DAY 489. Kanto 100 - 101 by Cryptid-Creations DAY 489. Kanto 100 - 101 :iconcryptid-creations:Cryptid-Creations 2,203 101 PARODY PARADE: Phoenix Wright Ace... 03 by kevinbolk PARODY PARADE: Phoenix Wright Ace... 03 :iconkevinbolk:kevinbolk 834 74 FMA bond by sooj FMA bond :iconsooj:sooj 8,672 707 Black Dragon Icon by Pinkfirefly135 Black Dragon Icon :iconpinkfirefly135:Pinkfirefly135 108 37 Duality by GraniteFire Duality :icongranitefire:GraniteFire 306 48 Wirt by Mugges Wirt :iconmugges:Mugges 170 1 Over the Garden Wall by lemonokashi Over the Garden Wall :iconlemonokashi:lemonokashi 450 20 Over the Garden Wall by Turtle-Arts Over the Garden Wall :iconturtle-arts:Turtle-Arts 2,125 161 Over The Garden Wall by pikaxiu Over The Garden Wall :iconpikaxiu:pikaxiu 2,754 72 Over the Garden Wall Scene Redraw by Mugges Over the Garden Wall Scene Redraw :iconmugges:Mugges 1,664 50 Over The Garden Wall by JoannaJohnen Over The Garden Wall :iconjoannajohnen:JoannaJohnen 1,052 21
Warning: anime anecdote ahead. I swear there's a point.

So this is on my mind because of a show I've been watching: The Heroic Legend of Arslan. (No spoilers past ep 20, please.) Since it takes place in a Persia-inspired fantasy country with a TON of characters, the show has a habit of displaying the names and titles of people as they appear. Makes sense; there's plenty to keep track of.

I'm just mentally taking notes at the beginning, trying to put names to all the faces. "Okay, that's King Andragoras and Queen Tahamine. The hot one-man army is Daryun, and there's Kishward," etc. There's a lot of cutting between generals and captains and other officer what-have-you's because the story dips into strategies and attacks quickly. So by episode 3 or 4, I'm skimming over titles to get to the actual names so I can also keep track of the subbed dialogue below. And then we cut to two officers looking out from high in the palace--- and I completely lose it.

My brother, annoyed at the sudden interruption, pauses and asks what on earth is wrong. I tell him to back the show up, and he asks why. And I'm just like, "I swear that guy's name was Sam."

Sure enough. Cavalry Captain Sam is not happy with how the battle is going.

I mean, the 'a' has a mark over it, but they're all saying it just like you normally would. Now I'm sitting here questioning whether Sam is an ancient, epic name in the legends of some cultures, since that's where a lot of the other names in the series were drawn from. I'm also irrationally giddy about having a "Sam" sit alongside names like Farangis and Kharlan. Why is it in there?!

But here's the interesting part... After my initial laughter and Sam making two brief appearances, his name stopped being distracting. I just liked this guy with his odd-duck name and his reserved nature, even though I was pegging him for cannon fodder. Sam was an easy name to remember, and I smiled whenever the character popped up because of it. It stopped feeling foreign to the series after it was said a time or two.

By comparison, I've read books where I've never been able to get over the protagonist's ridiculous fantasy name- even if it matches people around them. If I have to struggle to mentally pronounce something every time it appears, or if the character really needs to just buy a vowel- that's a problem for me. I think sometimes fantasy writers get too caught up in making everything in their world sound new and strange. If it's taken too far, it can feel alien.

Personally, I prefer names based on real cultures or ones that at least mimic similar vowel-consonant ratios. So having a Sam in with the bunch is much easier for me than having a Grignrknid. What do you ladies and gents think? Are there any sorts of sounds or names you love/hate seeing in made-up worlds?

I may or may not be taking notes, since I'm re-thinking the name schemes of a current fantasy project in the works. :P

   

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:icontornadoweirdo:
TornadoWeirdo Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
Hi, Jesus loves you!
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:iconscfrankles:
SCFrankles Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2016  Hobbyist Writer
Happy birthday to you! 

 Jumpin' On the Bed            :leapfrog:        jump rope     Swing 

:cakerun:      :juggle: revamp      Circus ball project entry      How high can you go? 


Hope you're having fun ^^
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:icondragoeniex:
dragoeniex Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2016
 Thank you! Actually, those smileys are super appropriate. :XD: I went to a circus that just happened to be in-town yesterday to celebrate, so fun times were had! (Am dorkily excited whenever a circus happens.)
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:icondavd0s:
DAvD0S Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Happy Birthday!~
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:icondragoeniex:
dragoeniex Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2016
Thank you! 8D 
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:icondavd0s:
DAvD0S Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
My pleasure~
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:iconwcqaguxa:
wcqaguxa Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
...not sure of you noticed, but I finished the prize for you: So I could keep the lantern lit by wcqaguxa
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:iconlexissketches:
LexisSketches Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2016
Hi! Just a random deviant stopping by to say hello!
I hope you've been having a great February Hug
La la la la Have a wonderful day! :eager: by darkmoon3636 
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:iconthewarofthering:
TheWarOfTheRing Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2015
Hey, thanks for the llama! :D

I'll give you one back.
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:icondragoeniex:
dragoeniex Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2015
Woo! :la:
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