Walker texas ranger deep cover cast
[No Need For A Core?] - CH 091: Serpent Time
2023.06.08 10:49 Zagaroth [No Need For A Core?] - CH 091: Serpent Time
Next >> The first serpentine dragon form he was going to work on was a variant of river drake. Preferring as always to grow and change existent creatures rather than make new ones from raw mana, Mordecai sent his mind searching among the small creatures that had become part of their ecology. Snakes were obvious choices, as well as most lizards, but less reptilian creatures could work as well.
True Dragons were not mammals, birds, reptiles, or any other common animal type. Yet all of those and more were capable of becoming draconoids, and the draconoid races often had some potential to evolve into True Dragons. So what made the difference? How did things that were not related species become related species like that?
As far as Mordecai could tell, it was a case of a faith-like interaction with a concept that every sentient race held. It reinforced itself as well, for True Dragons certainly would always claim that they could recognize another True Dragon compared to a mere draconoid, and for something like this they counted as being on the ‘mortal’ side of the equation. It probably didn’t hurt that the primary creator deity of this reality was a dragon, creating a very strong focal point of the concept of dragon.
It didn’t take him long to find a selection of animals that resonated positively with the concept he had in his mind, and he drew those creatures to the fifth floor. It didn’t matter that they were not all the same species, the transformations would fix that. Changing a creature was magnitudes easier than creating one, and reforging them into being the exact same species was only a little harder than starting with the same base.
The biggest issue with starting from scratch was not the physical structure, that was only a little bit harder than creating some of the items available as treasures. No, it was holding everything together at the same moment and filling it with synchronized animus and spirit while kick-starting every single chemical process at once in proper harmony. He had vague memories of having tried this before, just enough to have been left as a warning of ‘don’t do this’ by his more complete self.
Oh, if he wanted constructs or something relatively simple, creatures that had animus but not true life and spirit, those weren’t too hard. The bookwyrms and biting words were examples of that. Though creating constructs might become harder soon if his suspicions were right. Well, he’d have to wait and see on that.
These thoughts only took a portion of his concentration as he reworked his volunteers to match his vision. For these river drakes he used a classic sea serpent/leviathan model, a long sinuous body with various frilly fins running along its length, a narrow head and snout with sharp teeth at one end and a flat tail for speed and maneuverability at the other. But that wasn’t enough to make them a real threat to travelers, even if they were three feet long.
The first customization he made was some minor chameleon abilities. Nothing magical in this case, just the same ability to subtly shift the structure of their scales to reflect different colors of light that many normal creatures had, if slightly more efficiently designed. The effects were enhanced by the fact that the waterways were going to be filled with floating motes of light, making it hard to accurately measure depth and distance by vision alone.
And of course, any quality drake needed an important draconic feature, a Breath Weapon. In this case, he gave them a powerful, narrow jet of water that could pierce many materials as well as potentially knock foes back.
Now for mobility. They were already great swimmers of course, but he wanted more than that. He’d already made sure their scales and skin wouldn’t dry out easily, now he gave them a minor flight ability. It was closer to being a magically enhanced jump with a little bit of levitation for extra distance and a soft landing, and just a tiny bit of mid-air guidance. They could do this from water or land, and they had the sharp teeth and powerful snake-like musculature to act as constrictors, though they were too small to do so to a typical humanoid. Their land speed was pretty comparable to most snakes as well, though their side fins interfered somewhat.
There was a final important touch that wouldn’t affect anything in the immediate future but would come into play when they had more levels. These two to three-foot-long drakes were juveniles for the species he had designed, and he would be creating habitats for their later life stages as the dungeon gained more levels, and eventually some spawning grounds back in the hidden pools along with a way for them to get there in their adult forms.
Mordecai now turned his attention to the second serpentine form he wanted for this floor. Winged Serpents. Oh, not actual Couatl, these were not divine creatures after all, but he modeled them on the famous celestial serpents, giving their snake-like bodies both rainbow-colored feathers and scales as well as growing a pair of powerful, wide wings. They wouldn’t be able to soar the skies elegantly, but what they needed was maneuverability and the ability to leap upward in a quick burst.
Instead of free-roaming creatures like the river drakes, he made these pack hunters, and created a special mushroom for their nests: These were low, squat structures that grew from the ceiling, with a structure that was soft enough for tunnels to be chewed into it, but with enough tensile strength to continue to cling to the ceiling so long as the tunnels were not excessive.
From either these nests or from the tops of the mushroom trees they could keep watch for potential prey, and called out to each other with ultrasonic cries to communicate, the tones too high for most creatures to hear. They also used a separate set of clicks in that range for echolocation, allowing them to ‘see’ no matter how dark their environment was.
In order to capitalize on this, he gave them a pair of abilities. The first was a simple globe of darkness spell, about 40 feet in diameter that they could cast on an area about once an hour. This was readily countered with any sufficiently strong light-themed spell, but it could still cause problems for unprepared groups.
The second ability was related, but not so easily countered. Once a day, they could release a billowing cloud of dark ‘smoke’ from underneath their scales. This was a chemical reaction instead of a spell, and was a strong irritant to most species, creating effects not unlike that of pepper oil. The combination made it hard to see them and was extremely distracting, but also shorter-lived than the darkness spell. This was generally going to be used to enable the winged serpent to escape when injured.
Their primary combat ability was a poisoned bite. These were ambush predators, and typically would dive in on prey and deliver several bites before retreating, and would repeat the tactic as needed. And for a final touch, he gave them a razor-sharp tail tip, more than capable of flaying flesh and enabling them to eat prey in pieces, unlike a snake.
Now, he knew what he wanted to do for the two ‘warring’ factions already, but the ‘wildlife’ didn’t feel quite fleshed out yet, and he wanted to nail that down first. Well, he had water and air covered, and the warring factions would cover the surface of the land well enough, so why not something from underground?
While snakes could fulfill this role too, Mordecai felt that it would be overdoing it at this point. And definitely nothing plant-like, he’d done enough with the mushroom already. So a burrowing animal of some sort. Hmm. Let's see what his options were.
Well, no burrowing birds, he already had a flying challenge in a dense forest, he didn’t need more. Rabbits and polecats have been used in other levels already before even considering what his warring factions were going to be like. In the end he had two choices he liked, and decided that the mammal would probably work better with the warring factions, so he developed the other into a proper predator instead.
Not that it wasn’t already, but it was a little small for humans, and he could make some other improvements as well. Mordecai began channeling magic into a selection of trap door spiders to enlarge them to about the size of a horse and set to work ‘improving’ them. The first step was to make their poison more potent, namely into a mix of paralytic agents and digestive enzymes. Then he enhanced their silk weaving abilities, giving them different web types by adding ‘normal’ webs, thrown net-webs, and the ability to lay out sensory threads on the ground in addition to using webbing to reinforce their layers and create the trapdoors.
Of course, having them only use ground lairs would be boring. So Mordecai made sure they could dig into some of the larger mushroom trees to create lairs there too. Getting through this floor was going to require some proper paranoia. Now, while both the river drakes and the feathered serpents were going to be able to come in great numbers, the giant spiders were tougher foes, so he was going to limit them to hunting in pairs. This still wasn’t normal spider behavior, but that would help make things creepier and keep people on their toes.
He had a nice selection of fungal hazards and dangerous creatures, so now it was time to start working on the two war camps and their denizens.
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Also to be found on Royal Road.
$3 Patreon: Early chapters, lore excerpts $5 Patreon: Short Stories $10 Patreon: New stories not published anywhere else (Until after I finish this story at least)
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2023.06.08 09:57 Ipod732 25 [M4F] California - A Definitive Advertisement To Find That Someone
Hello! I've posted here on r4r a handful of times now and I wanted to try and write up a more definitive ad. Every time I've written up a new one it contained new information or less information than a previous post so, I'm going to try and compile it all into one master post. That way everything there is to decide whether you'd like to message me is easily available and accessible to you without having to dig around a dozen other posts.
Now that the "prologue" is out of the way let's jump into why you're here and what it is I'm looking for. Who Am I?
Things I enjoy:
- Future Lawyer - Currently working as a Student Attorney this Summer at my school's legal clinic before my final year of law school. Will probably be taking the Bar July of 2024. I'm not sure as to what kind of law I'll be doing as a full fledged lawyer, but I know I intend to practice here in California. I'm working in Sacramento.
- Philosopher - I got my BA in Philosophy from UC Berkeley. I've always enjoyed philosophical discussion and occasionally write philosophical pieces. I was always into the classical Greek philosophers; Socrates/Plato and Aristotle. If you ever need a deep conversation we can delve into the depths of any subject.
- ENTJ/Leo - For those that enjoy Horoscopes or Myers Briggs tests. I'm an extrovert. I enjoy people and being alone is draining for me. I'm a bit shy and anxious at first, but once I'm comfortable that all goes away.
- Muslim - I know religion can be a big deal for some people, but I don't ask that anyone hold similar religious views as me. As long as we both value humanity, family, and general goodness, a difference in religion shouldn't be an issue. As a Muslim I don't drink and I don't eat pork. I don't care if you do. I'm not the best at praying (it's something I should fix) and I don't do the prayers (I generally just recite prayers to myself without doing the ritual aspects). I do fast during Ramadan.
- Drug Free - I also refrain from smoking and doing drugs. I just ask that if you do any drugs it's no more than weed, but ideally you don't smoke. I just don't like the smell lol and it sets me into a coughing fit if I'm around people that are smoking.
- Writer - I enjoy writing if you couldn't tell from the absurd length of this post. I apologize in advance. I write short stories, philosophy, political opinion, and whatever else comes to mind when I feel inspired.
- Traveler - I've traveled to a handful of places and there are a handful more I'd like to complete. I've been to Italy, Ireland(for a day), Austria, Hungary, Germany, Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan
What I'm Looking For?
- Mythology - Especially Greek mythology which I'm more acquainted with. My favorite myth is Orpheus or as some know it from the play Eurydice which I have yet to see or read. Also love the myth of Sysiphus hauling the giant boulder up and the one about Prometheus stealing fire for mankind.
- Literature - I try and read on occasion. Haven't been too successful. The last book I completed was last winter and that was Robert Heinlein's Starship Troopers. Trying to get through Homer's Iliad at the moment before jumping to Homer's Odyssey. Some of my favorite books include: Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men, Rand's Atlas Shrugged, Tolkien's The Hobbit, Luo Guanzhong's Romance of Three Kingdoms, and lots more.
- Gaming - PC Gamer, but do own consoles like the Switch, 360, PS4. I just bought a Gameboy Advance SP to play some old Pokemon games. I have a Gameboy Advance, but it doesn't have the light and the battery exploded inside it, rip...
- Movies/Shows - I love films. I watch a lot of foreign stuff too like Kdramas, Chinese, Japanese, language doesn't matter as long as it's good and it has subtitles for me to read. My favorite film of all time is The Godfather. Some of my favorite shows include Game of Thrones(prior to season 8 of course), Better Call Saul, South Park, Rick and Morty, Criminal Minds(before they changed the whole cast), and plenty more.
- Anime - I could've put the animated cartoons in here too, but I'm currently watching Dr. Stone. Some of my favorites include: Steins;Gate, Kaiji, Legend of the Galactic Heroes(the original although the new one is alright), Death Note, and plenty more.
- Comedy - Love a good comedy show. I've been to a few clubs, the Ice House down in Pasadena, the Laugh Factory in Vegas, and Cobbs in San Francisco.
- Sports - Big fan of Soccer. Watch the Premier League when I get the chance and try and keep up. Man United fan. Also enjoy going to Sacramento Republic games. Football is cool too, 49ers. Watch Basketball on the rare occasion as well, Sacramento Kings.
- Music - Rock and Metal fan. Going to be seeing Nickelback in July and I want to see Disturbed in July as well, but have no one to go with, rip. Some of my favorite bands include: Green Day(who I got to see live alongside Weezer and Fall Out Boy), Rise Against, Five Finger Death Punch, Disturbed, and a handful of others. My music tastes can be a bit eclectic, but rock and metal is my go to.
- Tea - I'll definitely brew you some tea someday. I enjoy black tea for the most part. I order loose-leaf tea online. I enjoy Assam, Darjeerling, Oolong, Pu-erh, Keemun, Earl Grey, and more.
- Museums - A big fan of history so I enjoy going to museums and looking at old things. Love Renaissance/Enlightenment period artwork. Just about any kind of museum is cool. I love learning new things.
- Going out in General - Whether it's hiking in nature among the redwoods, going to a bar, dancing at a club/bar, eating out, or bowling with friends. I'm good for just about anywhere as I like getting out of the house.
- Homebody - As much as I enjoy going out and exploring new places, sometimes I need a break from adventure and enjoy relaxing at home. Play some board games.
- DnD - I'm relatively new to it, but I'm DMing currently for a group of friends that I played my first campaign with. Been playing around two years now if not three (a bit on and off due to scheduling conflicts).
A woman who I can meet, befriend, love, marry, have kids, and grow old with. I'm a hopeless romantic, I guess lol. It would go in that order and as for the timeline, that's for fate to decide. Age -
Ideally 21+, but will accept as long as you're 18+. Ideal age range 21-30. If you're slightly older or slightly younger that's fine too. +/- 7 is the general rule of thumb. Looks
- Personality beats looks, but attraction is still important. I don't have a type per se. Don't really care about race/ethnicity. I'm trying to work on my weight myself so I rather not cast a stone at a glass house, but proportionality is something I find attractive. A gym partner or someone who can help me with my weight would also be appreciated(we can run together or go hike, etc.) Personality
- I find that sometimes when I'm not attracted to a person , their personality attracts me to them. Personality can elevate a 5 to a 10 or reduce a 10 to a 1 instantly. All I ask is that you're intelligent(a woman who can think for herself, articulate her thoughts, and is able to challenge me when I'm wrong), kind, communicative(communication is key in any relationship), and is sociable(don't need to be extroverted, just able to socialize when the situation calls for it). Location
- In California, looking to move to California, or willing to relocate (a hard ask considering everyone is leaving California lol). For the foreseeable future, I'm stuck here for work and family. Maybe someday I'll have a nice plot of land in the middle of nowhere and can live off the fatta the land with some rabbits. If you read the post and know the book, you got the reference. What can I Give You? Tea
- As I mentioned before, I'll brew you tea and sometimes I might have a good story to tell over tea lol. Laughter
- I have a contagious laugh and I enjoy joking around. I laugh at most things so it's not too hard to elicit a laugh from me which might get you laughing too. Adventure -
I like visiting new places with friends or a companion so as long as you desire it, we can always adventure out to new places. Whether it's a beach, a new city, a forest, mountain, you name it, we can go. Optimism -
I have a generally happy-go-lucky attitude with life and I'll be happy to reassure you life is good and things will be fine. And if you need the opposite with harsh realism, ask and you shall receive lol. Hygiene -
I do my best to keep myself clean. I also wash my own dishes. I try to keep my home clean, but it's a bit difficult when you're never home. I bought my first condo in 2021 and now I understand why people rent. It's difficult to maintain everything and expensive. And on top of all that you gotta keep it clean even when you're not home. Attention -
As much as you desire. I enjoy people and having someone around all the time is fine by me. I also don't mind some alone time and lawyer stuff can be a bit time-consuming. Food
- I can't cook, but I'll try. I tried to make sushi and failed two weekends ago. Rice was too sticky and too hot. Also the sashimi refused to thaw no matter how long I waited(was well over 12 hours...) But wrapping it was actually easier than I expected just not evenly distributed along the roll.
I think that covered everything I needed to add or wanted to add in here. If I come up with more I'll be updating this master ad over time. Feel free to message me or use the chat feature. Also if you like we can move to Discord, feel free to ask for it. Attached is a photo of me as well. Thanks for bearing through this long post. And if you didn't read it all, that's fine. It's too damn long. https://imgur.com/a/GgHS6Iu
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2023.06.08 07:50 Emotional_Sector_249 Final Ticket
My sleepless dream ends with an alarm, the pounding klaxon of mission start. The whirring of servos and pump of hydraulics brings my body to full readiness, ready for one last ticket. The Woman from Angeri gave us this mission. She gave it to us and us alone. For the glory of all Mankind she said, strike at the heart of the Imperium. Bloody their nose in a way they’ll never forget.
The pilot, a good one from Yord, helps me get into gear. Everything from the combat armor, thrusters, and the ever-important Agamemnon device.
Myself and the rest of my team step into the waiting airlock, turning on the armor seals and tapping into the armor air reserves. The chamber depressurizes before the airlock finally opens. We jump outside the deployment vessel and switch our radios on, waiting for the signal to begin our descent to the world below.
“Mayday, Mayday, this is the Independent Trader Timberwolf
, how may we assist,” came the response from the Imperial highport authorities.
“I don’t know, there seems to be an issue with the jump fuel li-” the captain began to say before the ship suddenly went up in a ball of white. The captain played her part beautifully, and the wreckage would act as our cover to hot drop onto the world.
Thrusters activate and I deploy my heat shield as I gun for the palace. The Coalition will be sorry to lose that pilot, she got us right over target.Now initially the Imps didn’t seem too perturbed. Debris from a ship that small would just burn up in atmosphere, no skin off their back, but they did get worried seeing five little metallic things drop from high orbit right over the palace. We made it to about cloud level before they scrambled fighters. Pretty good all be told.
Jond did his part too, he flipped around and pushed his thrusters to meet the oncoming jets. As he did so I activated the Agamemnon device. Jond got off about four rockets, splashing four of the jets, before he got taken out.
The rest flew around like headless chickens, this hot and heavy device strapped to my back cast out hundreds of false sensor pings for them to follow, blinding them in all capacities except the MK. 1 eyeball.
Even then, we were small, we were fast, and we were refracting light thanks to these cloaks. Imps never knew what hit em as we finally made touch down in the gardens of the palace. Asha, Nargör, and Dekan went to make a nuisance of themselves, sliver guns out and on the bounce.
The shoulder mounted plasma gun took out the main door, and some poor Imp standing behind it. I stormed into a room of Imperial marines, guns in hand, and practically as reflex I washed em out with hypersonic slivers. This ballistic computer was worth every penny of Coalition dime as I ripped holes into Imp after Imp.
One poor bastard even tried to knife me, as if a little knife is going to stop the one-ton steel abomination that is me. I ripped his head off and continued further into the palace. Everywhere I go is decorated with frescoes, paintings, and statues depicting all the glories of Mankind they revere, and everything that drove them to conflict with us. I find it a bit arrogant, but mine is not to question why.
A few Imps try to interrupt my thoughts, but again they are ripped apart by slivers on reflex. They even bothered to set-up a heavy laser emplacement at the end of the hallway, not that it does them any good. They burn through a decent chunk of my left arm as I rolled out of the way and down a side passage. A quick particulate grenade obscures their next shot, and a plas grenade silences the gun. That was a very quick response, clearly not enough though.
Pushing through a few more isolated bands of Imps, I find the rather gaudy throne room with its big golden doors. Left arm is at reduced effectiveness, and I can only guess that most of his personal guard is in the room with him.
Instead of walking through the front door, I push up to the ceiling. Hanging there I bore through it with a breaching charge, and emerge up on the roof. I find a rather surprised team of snipers who are quickly dispatched by my saka after I leap at them.
Dropping down from the skylight I make ready to dispatch the Emperor’s personal guard, only to find none. Just an old man on a gaudy throne.
“My sons and daughters have already evacuated the palace Coalition Man,”
“They were not our target,”
“Truly? You have far more restraint than my generals it would seem,"
“Call it a difference in philosophy,” I said, and at that the Emperor of the Empire of the Mind laughed long and deep.
“I know you find me repugnant Coalition Man, but would you honor a final request?”“Depends,”
“I wish to fall on my sword,”
“Then do it,” I said, to which the Emperor gave a simple nod.
There the Emperor drew from his throne a long blade, and succeeded in his final will. I took his head, and split his spine to ensure there was no recovery.
“Target eliminated. Adiri 1-5, report,”
“War Cabinet eliminated. Adiri 2,”
“Engaging the enemy. Adiri 3,”
“I am near overrun. Adiri 4,”
“Mission success, say your final prayers,”
No Imps come to avenge their emperor. Maybe they’re distracted? Or cowards. Either way, it seems I have a moment. I sit on this throne, this paltry thing of stone and gold that enables little men to end millions. Don’t know what I expected. It's a little vindicating to deliver the death he so flippantly affected back to him and his councilors, each of which could have schemed to prevent this. When my soul goes to Orz, to the living Void, I think he’ll find this all very funny. It's been long enough, I confirm the self-destruct order.
It burns for only a moment.
For another perspective of this conflict: A Chance Meeting
Author's Note: If anyone understands why Reddit ruined my formatting three different ways when posting this that would be wonderful.
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2023.06.08 04:48 Mission_Emergency_36 I am 32 years old, a full time RN-BSN student, live in Texas, and currently make ~$535 monthly.
Long story short I spent 8 years on the West Coast holding increasingly important positions in the energy industry, but I hated it with every fiber of my being. I started taking nursing prerequisite courses in January of 2020. Family trauma happened. I moved home to Texas to be closer to my family, quit my job (was making ~$130k with bonus), and took the plunge and went to back to school for nursing at 31. I am half way done with an accelerated BSN program and I have a 4.0 GPA. I love it so much despite it being very difficult. I have externship currently and I have an ICU internship lined up for my final semester, which is basically a guaranteed new grad job.
I currently live with my mom and brother. We are remodeling our house so we are in an apartment for a bit. Very tight quarters but thankful to be with them. Boyfriend just successfully made a big career move and is now a superintendent for an important and well respected organization in town making $60k annually with a 8% bonus. Very proud of him and very excited for our future - we are talking about getting engaged in the next year. He is getting an apartment in the next couple months after living at home with his family due to some major family health issues he has been helping out with so you will see some of the apartment search start to happen in this diary!
Currently boyfriend and I split going out expenses pretty much down the line, but with this new job we had a discussion last week about how he will pay for the majority of our going out costs moving forward once he gets his first paycheck this month until I start working full time again in January! Previous money diary from August 2022 here. ASSETS (comparing last money diary to now):
NET WORTH: $373k
| ||August 2022 ||June 2023 ||Difference |
|401k ||$156,400 ||$158,600 ||$2,200 |
|Roth IRA ||$68,000 ||$68,500 ||(500) |
|Saving's account ||$41,001.43 ||$26,572.63 ||($14,428.81) |
|Checking Account ||$3,024.58 ||$915.41 ||($2,109) |
|HSA ||$8,800 ||$7,100 ||($1,700) |
|Brokerage ||$440 ||$444 ||$4 |
|UGMA ||$85,000 ||$84,000 ||($1,000) |
|Pension ||forgot to include ||$27,000 ||N/A |
**I don’t carry any credit card debt / no student loan debt / no equity in any kind of home. I was lucky enough to be in a position where I saved up over $40k cash to pay for living expenses when in school. My UGMA account will be used as part of a down payment for a house in the next couple years. My current BSN degree is being covered through family. Also, trying to figure out what to do with my pension - depending how finances go the next 8 months I am in school / if I have any emergencies (I have 2 senior pets) I could cash part of it out or completely roll it over into an IRA. INCOME Income Progression
: I worked in the energy industry for 8 years; my starting salary was $35,000.
I worked in the Seattle area starting out at $35k in 2014. Moved to a new job in 2016 for $65k and then another new job in 2018 for $85k +12% bonus. Got up to $104k + 20% bonus before I quit. Also worked as a CNA on the weekends for about 6 months for $15 an hour during COVID to make sure I really wanted to go to nursing school. Main Job Monthly Take Home
: It varies but the average so far this year it is $535. I have an incredibly flexible externship at a hospital very close to where I live where my director literally just lets me show up whenever I want to work. I make $17 an hour. I met a couple incredible mentors but I think I am going to quit soon since it just won’t be feasible to work this semester and I already have my ICU internship lined up for September. Trying to be easier on myself and put myself first and I feel very lucky that I don’t need to work. Don’t get me wrong the extra money is SO NICE but I want to concentrate on school, myself, family, partner, and friends. Work on top of an accelerated nursing program is too much. I am actually the only one working in my cohort currently. Any Other Monthly Income Here
: I live with my mom right now and she pays for most of the groceries, utilities, etc. I feel incredibly privileged and lucky that I can live with her and that she is able to support me in this way while I transition careers. I do lots for her to support her such as chores, errands, paying for big Costco runs, etc. My boyfriend also helps out with pet expenses and other things I want / need. MONTHLY EXPENSES
- Rent: $400 to my mom for a very discounted rate at our current apartment. I don’t pay rent when we are at the house. I will not be paying rent when I semi-move in with my boyfriend in the next couple months. Our goal is to get our own luxury apartment next year close to both of our places of employment after a year lease at a cheaper place. Between now and then I’ll split my time with him and my mom.
- Cellphone: $15 (on family plan & I just pay for additional data)
- Spotify: $5.40 (student plan)
- iCloud: $2.99
- Prime: $8.11
- Gym membership: $20
- Regular therapy: $5 a session and I go biweekly
- Health insurance: $122.54 monthly
- Costco: $60 annually
I allocate the following to my biggest expense categories monthly:
WEDNESDAY - DAY 1
- Gas: $120
- Groceries: $300
- Eating out: $400
- Pet expenses: $200
- Other discretionary spending: $400
8:45: I slept 10 hours last night and it was glorious. I worked a 12 hour shift at the hospital yesterday and our patient acuity was very high.
9:30: Make a coffee and walk and feed my pup. I walk over to the pool for a morning swim. I love a quiet morning swim so much.
11:30: I had a nice 500 yd swim, drank a Premier Protein shake & ate overnight oats with blueberries for breakfast, had a relaxing shower, and started some laundry. Feeling anxious about everything I have on my plate currently. Also I feel hungover from work yesterday. I was going to work another 12 hour shift tomorrow but now I don’t know if I can handle it with school also starting on Friday and a very busy social weekend coming up. Luckily, my director literally lets me show up whenever I want so I may do 7 or 8 hours tomorrow instead of a full 12. Try to table my feelings to discuss in therapy this afternoon.
11:40: Sit down to finish some online orientation for my internship that is coming up my final semester.
13:03: Orientation stuff only took about 20 minutes thank god. I ran to the grocery store and grab a 4 pack of watermelon Celsius, frozen veggies, Eggo waffles, tea bags, string cheese, coffee filters, Wheat Thins, and lean ground beef ($37.01)
. Head up to the rooftop lounge at the apartment complex to FaceTime a friend that lives across the country since there is zero privacy in the apartment.
14:15: Get off FaceTime, work on some more laundry, and head out to therapy.
16:15: Good, productive, fun, and validating therapy session and I make it over to my friend’s condo to check on her kitties. I had set up a reoccurring biweekly therapy appointment now that I know my school schedule for the upcoming semester too. We talked about money fixation and anxiety and trying to let that go. We agree that I should sleep in a bit tomorrow, walk my dog, go for a swim, and then go to work. I don’t ~need~ the money so working 12 hours vs 7 or 8 is not an issue. My mental health is more important. Also the work hangover from yesterday is real.
17:00: Boyfriend comes over after work and jumps in the shower while I’m a couch potato (Disclaimer: he’s friends with my friend too and she’s 100% comfortable with him hanging out too.) We relax and hang with the kitties and catch up on our days.
18:45: We head to dinner. We grab burritos at one of our favorite local spots and I pay ($25.88)
. We look at houses for fun on Zillow and discuss what apartments we want to tour in the next couple weeks.
20:00: I make it home and have a long talk with my mom about her friend who ended up in the hospital today with a compound fracture. Long story short I’ll need to stay up until midnight to hand off the house keys, garage door opener, etc. to a friend who is driving into town that can take care of her dog. Her dog is a pit bull that is vicious to strangers so no one else can go over to the house other than this friend who pet sits and knows the dog.
23:30: The friend makes it and we hand him the keys and everything he needs. I had spent the evening tidying up and meal prepping and looking at more apartments. It’s amazing to me how much time goes into keeping a clean and tidy home.
12:08: I spent a half hour setting up my June budget and then pass out. TOTAL: $62.89 THURSDAY - DAY 2
9:05: I finally wake up to a bunch of texts from multiple different friends / friend groups. Ugh. I’m just feeling really anxious about school starting tomorrow, my mom being very distraught over her colleague / friend, working today, and a busy weekend coming up. I make some coffee and walk my pup.
9:33: I call my mom while feeding my pup breakfast and tell her how I’m feeling and we both agreed I ran around too much last semester and I told her I am setting firm boundaries with myself to basically not do anything social during the school week once clinical start (Monday - Thursday) unless it’s like a super casual dinner and I truly have the capacity for it. I burned myself out at the end of last semester and spent weeks putting the pieces back together.
9:55: I make another cup of coffee and take myself for a morning swim. It brings me so much joy and grounds me. I swim 500 yards and then jump into the shower, throw my scrubs on, kiss my pup goodbye and head to the hospital. I drink a chocolate Primer Protein shake and call my friend L on the way to hear how her trip has been going so far. It was nice to catch up even though we saw each other over the weekend lol.
10:54: Ate my overnight oats made with half and half and some blueberries, clocked in, and headed out to the floor. Immediately get asked to be a sitter which literally never happens. Thank you universe. Feeling a little less anxious now that I’m here and feeling thankful for the little bit of extra money I’m making and being here for my community.
14:04: Maybe not thank you universe - the patient slept for a while then got extremely combative and was trying to punch me. I switch off with a coworker and head to the break room to eat a bowl I made with frozen veggies + rotisserie chicken from Costco + cheddar cheese on top.
19:09: I finally clock out. I had a snack of 2 rice cakes and some almonds at one point. Rest of work was wild (i.e. a psychotic patient that pulled out his IV and was throwing things everywhere, someone screaming in pain for hours nonstop, etc.) and had me questioning what I am doing making this career change. I am tired.
19:49: I make it home after swinging by L’s to check on her kitties. Jump in the shower. My mom has dinner ready and I scarf down this gorgeous basil, mozzarella, peppers, tomatoes, avocados, and olive salad + a couple Trader Joe’s dolmas + a couple pieces of fresh bread. Delicious. I force myself to get my food and my school bag ready for tomorrow and lay my scrubs out before I crawl into bed a little after 9. TOTAL: $0 FRIDAY - DAY 3
06:22: Alarm goes off and I roll out of bed and take my pup for a nice walk. Give him breakfast / shower / throw on my scrubs / pack my lunch / give the pup a big kiss goodbye and I am out the door a little after 7:00.
07:47: I get to school and I am NOT feeling it lol. I stopped at Costco for gas on my way ($20.67)
and I also swung by a very Texas niche store that sells all kinds of beef jerky my brother really likes to grab some for his birthday coming up ($17.98)
10:00: Class is boring - it’s tough getting back into it with an 8 hour cardiac lecture. It’s good to see my friends but struggle is real. I run into my favorite professor and she makes my morning. I tell her all about my upcoming internship and my boyfriend’s new job and she was stoked and told me to “lock him down” hahaha. I also make 2 phone calls to apartment complexes we are interested in cause my boyfriend doesn’t get great reception at work during business hours. One place doesn’t have any current availability but the lady was so nice and will be sending me a virtual tour later today. Schedule another tour on Monday afternoon.
11:30: We break for lunch and I eat the same thing as yesterday - rotisserie chicken + frozen veggies + cheddar cheese.
12:30: Spend the afternoon in class completely unable to concentrate. The professor is throwing ECG rhythms around left and right. 8 hours of ECG lecture is NOT a productive way to learn the material. I work on a couple study guides during class cause I cannot.
3:30: We get out a little early and I rush to meet my mom for a walk through of the house. I follow her back to her office because I sent a big Chewy order there. Pick up the box along with a Diet Coke, order us Cava for dinner, pick up Cava, check on my friends cats on my way home real quick, and then have a shower and relax. Mom pays for Cava and I thank her multiple times.
7:00: We eat dinner all together when everyone is eventually home (harissa avocado bowl for me!) and then my boyfriend calls right when I head out to walk my dog. Perfect. I miss him and have been having anxiety around our new schedules. We have a good 30 minute chat about our days before I spend the evening basically doing nothing. I chat with my family and mess around on my phone. Text boyfriend about different apartments.
22:44: Bed time after I brush and floss my teeth. I’m zonked from the week. TOTAL: $38.65 SATURDAY - DAY 4
08:30: I’m awake! Did not sleep well at all cause thunderstorms. My pup is deathly afraid and will not stop shaking for hours so I end up sleeping on the couch on and off. We were up and down all night but somehow I feel okay. We go for a quick walk, feed him, and start a load of whites in the washer.
09:08: I have a shower, and then I head out to get my family coffee from one of our favorite spots.
10:45: Make it back home with 2 cold brews for my brother and I and a latte for mom. I also picked up 5 breakfast tacos and a German chocolate cake for Sunday dinner tomorrow ($56.24)
. I eat a bean and cheese taco and a potato and egg taco, start some laundry, and put air in my tires with my home compressor since my low air light has been on in my car for an embarrassing amount of time. Brother needs air in his tires too so turns into a production lol.
12:18: Spent a couple hours putzing around dealing with the tires and more laundry and packing a bag for tonight. We are headed to the lake for a friend’s bday party and I have no clue what I want to wear so I pack a lot of options and clothes for church tomorrow morning too. Now it’s time to drive around for a little bit and check out some potential apartments and do a small Target run.
14:02: I make it home from apartment cruising and my Target run. I bought a 3 subject notebook, tire pressure gauge with valve caps included, two bags of frozen veggies, mini coke zeros, and a bag of Lesser Evil popcorn ($21.50)
. I was so tempted to stop for lunch on my way home but lines were long everywhere so I made myself some cheesy eggs + 2 Eggo waffles when I got home. Put the valve cap on my tire that is missing one.
14:36: Make it to L’s condo and clean up after the cats and start the Roomba. Boyfriend texts that he is out of work and on his way over! He’s been up since 4 am this morning for work and I am feeling some type of way with everything on my plate / anxiety so we will see how long we make it tonight lol.
15:30: S is showered and we are out the door!
16:30: We make it to the rental, change into our bathing suits, and walk down to the river.
19:00: We hang out in the river for a good 2.5 hours. It was a good time - nice to chat with my school friends and their partners. Boyfriend and I head out before the real partying starts lol.
20:00: We eat dinner at this cute Tex Mex place. Boyfriend has some kind of alcoholic mixed drink and we share a fajita for 2 plate. Boyfriend pays - it was $70.56 with tip. I drive us back because he does not like to drive even after one drink which I am 100% here for. We are so tired lol.
21:15: Make it back to L’s condo and we take a hot shower and get into bed in the guest bedroom. It takes forever for us to both fall asleep. TOTAL: $77.74 SUNDAY - DAY 5
6:50: Oh boy neither of us slept well. There was another thunderstorm. One of the cats was yowling nonstop outside our door. The ceiling fan was clanking on and off. The bed was way too soft. Up and down again all night for a second night in a row for me lol.
8:11: I’m showered and we are both dressed and we head out to one of our favorite taquerias for breakfast. I get 2 bean and cheese tacos and one machacado + egg taco. Boyfriend also gets 3 tacos and we both get coffee. We sit and chat for a while until it was time to go to church. I pay on the way out ($22.98 with tip)
11:40: After an hour of church and an hour meeting for a committee I’m on - I’m wiped out. Still have a house walk through to do with my family and boyfriend so I head over there and we are there for about an hour.
13:10: Finally made it home, walked my pup, and made myself a late lunch of Dave’s Killer bread toast + peanut butter + banana.
13:54: A girlfriend calls and asks if I want to get a pedicure this afternoon. We decide to get dinner together on Thursday instead. I’m actually very touched she called me because we are friends through another friend and normally don’t get together just the two of us. I’m really happy she reached out. I also invite one of my friends from school - I have been wanting them to meet for a while.
14:30: Nap timeeeee! I knock out for an hour then realize how thirsty I am and how badly I need to get out of the apartment. I get up, take the pup for a spin with my brother, and head to Sonic to get a large diet cherry limeade and then head to L’s condo to check on the kitties and chill ($3.34)
18:00: I spent a couple hours chilling on the internet - working on my google calendar, school organization, church emails, reviewing some apartments we may drive by tomorrow, and I download the remaining episodes of season 1 of Nurse Jackie to watch tonight. I had bought the complete first season over a month ago and still haven’t watched it all lol. That’s how little I watch tv.
20:00: We had bibimbap for dinner and German chocolate cake for dessert. Delicious. I clean up the dishes and do more laundry because that’s my life between school, work, working out, having 2 hairy pets, etc. Unpack my bags from the river day and sleepover last night too. Chat with my family.
22:00: Crawl into bed and watch some Nurse Jackie before passing out. TOTAL: $26.32 MONDAY - DAY 6
7:33: I slept better but still tossed and turned. Still just anxious with everything going on, especially the start of another intense semester.
8:47: Pup is fed and walked. I open the windows because it is 68 degrees which is unheard of in June in south Texas.
10:06: I ended up doing a deep clean of my room hahah. Wiped down and vacuumed every surface. So much hair. My pup is shedding so bad. I change my bedding and toss my comforter in the wash. Thank goodness I have 2 sets of sheets now. I had only 1 for the longest time lol. I take a break and eat some Greek yogurt + pecans + banana + drizzle of honey.
11:03: I vacuumed the common areas in the apartment, took a long shower, and I’m dressed and ready for my boyfriend to pick me up. I felt like being cute today so I put on this new leather skirt from Alice + Olivia my boyfriend got me as a present that I haven’t worn yet + a white crop top + my cheetah old skool Vans. I’m so tired though lololol. This is one of the only Mondays we both have off for the foreseeable future so I am gonna rally and make the most of it!
11:15: Boyfriend is so tired too bahah. We go grab coffees at this cute little coffee shop I’ve been wanting to check out. I get a cortado. Boyfriend gets an iced caramel almond milk latte and I treat ($11.82 with tip)
. We sit and chill and map out what apartments we want to check out today.
12:30: Walk across the street to grab Tex Mex for lunch at a pretty famous place in town. I get the enchilada plate and boyfriend gets a chicken quesadilla plate. He pays and it is $27.89 with tip.
1:30: Go for our first apartment tour of the day and it is depressing. We drive around and check out the other apartments we are I interested in and then go on one more tour at a place that we are really impressed by. It’s $1.3k or so for a 500 sq ft one bedroom and that’s a stretch. Ideally he wants the base rent to be $1,000 or less which is quite doable. Yet again - south Texas prices for the win. He is looking at older buildings, but they are well kept up and in good neighborhoods. They are not in the hottest places to be in town, but definitely still nice.
16:00: We go back to L’s condo and chill and take care of the kitties. Discuss the apartments and ask my brother if he wants to get dinner with us and he agrees.
18:00: We head back to my apartment, pick up my brother, and head to dinner. We order a large caesar salad, an arugula and sausage pizza, and a mushroom and pepperoni pizza. This spot does $10 two topping pizzas on Monday and it slaps. I treat my boyfriend and brother to dinner ($48.01 with tip)
20:00: Home and boyfriend walks my pup with me. Brother makes us both tea and we have a nice cup of tea and chat until boyfriend heads home. I put together my breakfast and lunch tomorrow and then lay down to chill and have some quiet time.
22:30: Bed time! First day of critical care didactic is tomorrow and I am feeling mostly excited. TOTAL: $59.82 TUESDAY - DAY 7
6:22: My alarm goes off and wakes me from a deep sleep. I finally slept a good 8 hours though!
7:10: I am showered and throw on some black Lululemon Align leggings and a swiftly tech tee. I was gonna wear real pants but screw that haha. I am really dragging this morning.
7:50: Make it to school and lecture starts at 8. Honestly - that lecture could have been given in 45 minutes but we spent the first 2 hours simply going over the schedule and clarifying assignments since everything is such a disorganized hot mess at the beginning of the semester.
10:05: We take a break and call a fellow church congregation member to see if we want to meet today to tour an organization that supports people immigrating. We are debating if we want to allocate church donation funds to them. We agree to meet at the location at 1:30.
12:41: We are done with class and I stayed a bit after to start making my study guide for our first test even though it isn’t for 5 weeks. I realize the time and quickly pack up and go heat up my lunch. Chat with an MSN student who I had met in orientation for my internship a couple weeks ago and he expressed his frustration about how the start of this semester is rough for him too.
2:38: We finish our tour and we are very impressed at the clean and organized operation. We agree to each write our own follow up email to the rest of the group before the end of the day supplying the church donating.
3:30: I make some jasmine tea and have some quiet time when I get home before starting on some dosage calculation problems that are due on Friday.
5:45: I end up spending almost 2.5 hours on homework - dosage calculations, an article summary, and start on a medication sheet. Ouch. I lay down for 20 minutes, take my pup out, and then head out to meet my friend for dinner at Cava.
6:30: I get the lemon chicken bowl and pita chips ($13.69)
and we sit and chat for a 1.5 hours. We just saw each other a couple weeks ago, but so much to catch up on.
20:00: We agree to go on a double date in the next couple weeks and I head home. I walk my pup with my mom and brother, pack my gym bag and my food for tomorrow, write my follow up emails from today’s visit to the church committee, and relax in bed. TOTAL: $13.69 TALLY OF DAILY EXPENSES:
TOTAL EXPENSES: $279.11 REFLECTION
- Food + Drink: $240.36
- Fun / Entertainment: $0
- Home + Health: $0
- Clothes + Beauty: $0
- Transport: $30.67
- Other: $17.98
I spent quite a bit on going out to eat this week with my boyfriend, family, and friends. It was the end of my school break and boyfriend is transitioning to a new job so we were a bit out of whack with spending on food. Usually we eat at home with our families more, but it was nice to go out and enjoy ourselves too. It was a super busy week for me too - which is the norm lately. I have a great community and social life here compared to the West Coast and I do not take that for granted. Trying to make myself more of a priority so I don’t burn out again, which is difficult for me.
submitted by Mission_Emergency_36
to MoneyDiariesACTIVE [link] [comments]
2023.06.08 04:29 Desperate-Smile-4579 TIL in 1780, in an event known as Dark Day, New England was cast into blackness as a result of Ontario wildfires mixed with unfavorable atmospheric conditions. Such was the lack of light, candles were needed in the day to provide illumination. Parts of New Hampshire were covered in ash 6" deep.
2023.06.08 04:27 TheFrozenSlime 6/7 PGT: Well, still won the series [TEX 0, STL 1]
Cardinals (25-37) @ Rangers (40-20) First Pitch
: 7:05 PM at Globe Life Field Join us on Discord! Game Preview Reddit Stream for this post
Line Score - Game Over
| ||1 ||2 ||3 ||4 ||5 ||6 ||7 ||8 ||9 ||R ||H ||E ||LOB |
|STL ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||1 ||0 ||1 ||4 ||0 ||1 |
|TEX ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||4 ||0 ||9 |
|TEX ||IP ||H ||R ||ER ||BB ||SO ||P-S ||ERA |
|Gray, Jn ||9.0 ||4 ||1 ||1 ||0 ||12 ||100-76 ||2.32 |
|STL ||IP ||H ||R ||ER ||BB ||SO ||P-S ||ERA |
|Flaherty ||6.0 ||3 ||0 ||0 ||5 ||8 ||105-56 ||4.15 |
|Hicks, J ||1.0 ||1 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||1 ||16-11 ||3.91 |
|Gallegos ||1.0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||1 ||9-6 ||3.70 |
|Helsley ||1.0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||2 ||11-9 ||3.24 |
|Description ||Length ||Video |
|Bullpen availability for Texas, June 7 vs Cardinals ||0:07 ||Video |
|Bullpen availability for St. Louis, June 7 vs Rangers ||0:07 ||Video |
|Fielding alignment for Texas, June 7 vs Cardinals ||0:11 ||Video |
|Fielding alignment for St. Louis, June 7 vs Rangers ||0:11 ||Video |
|Starting lineups for Cardinals at Rangers - June 7, 2023 ||0:09 ||Video |
|Breaking down Jack Flaherty's pitches ||0:08 ||Video |
|Jack Flaherty's outing against the Rangers ||0:23 ||Video |
|Breaking down Jon Gray's pitches ||0:08 ||Video |
|Jon Gray's outing against the Cardinals ||0:22 ||Video |
|Marcus Semien turns a double play following a review ||0:28 ||Video |
|Jack Flahety ||0:10 ||Video |
|Josh H. Smith throws out Nolan Arenado after a review ||0:29 ||Video |
|Jack Flaherty strikes out eight Rangers over six IP ||0:58 ||Video |
|Jon Gray fans 12 Cardinals over nine innings ||0:59 ||Video |
Game ended at 9:26 PM.
|Winning Pitcher ||Losing Pitcher ||Save |
|Hicks, J (1-3, 3.91 ERA) ||Gray, Jn (6-2, 2.32 ERA) ||Helsley (7 SV, 3.24 ERA) |
Remember to sort by new
to keep up!
submitted by TheFrozenSlime
to TexasRangers [link] [comments]
2023.06.08 03:05 TheDuzzyFuckling A Breakdown of the Splash Hits at Pac Bell/SBC/AT&T/Oracle Park
| || | submitted by TheDuzzyFuckling to mlb [link] [comments]
On Friday, June 2nd, 2023, Giants' first baseman Lamonte Wade, Jr. smoked the opening pitch of the game into McCovey Cove to take a 1-0 lead over the visiting Orioles. The historic home run was the 100th round tripper hit into the water by a Giants player since the best stadium in baseball (sorry Pittsburgh) opened in the year 2000.
While I found helpful data sources on MLB.com
and Baseball Almanac
, I wanted to dig a little deeper into Splash Hit data by both the Giants and opposing teams, specifically because I knew Barry Bonds had the most waterballs, but I had NO idea who was #2. Let me throw some fun facts at you first - these will be great trivia questions for the other, more offline baseball fans in your life.
Splash Hit Fun Facts
- While Giants players have now combined for 100 Splash Hits, all other opposing teams have combined for 55
- Joc Pederson and Ryan Klesko are the only two players to have Splash Hits as members of the Giants and another team - the Dodgers and Cubs for Joc, and the Padres for Klesko
- Including Joc, four players have hit more than one Splash Hit as members of more than one other organization - the others are Adam Laroche with the Diamondbacks and Pirates, Bryce Harper with the Nats and Phillies, and Carlos Delgado with the Mets and Marlins
- The Diamondbacks are the opposing team that has hit the most Splash Hits with 8
- No player on the Guardians, Tigers, Royals, Twins, Orioles, Yankees, Rays, Blue Jays, A's, or Mariners has hit one yet, mostly due to limited appearances in San Francisco (not the A's though, they just suck)
- Tim Lincecum is the Giants pitcher who has given up the most opposing Splash Hits with 5, and ten other pitchers are tied for second with two
- Barry Bonds hit the first Giants Splash Hit on 5/1/2000, while Todd Hundley of the Angels was the first opponent to hit one two months later on 6/30/2000
- No right-handed hitter has ever clubbed a Splash Hit, although Buster Posey came close a few times
- EXTREMELY GOOD TRIVIA QUESTION ALERT: Who was the second Giant after Bonds to hit one into the cove? Utilityman Felipe Crespo, who bounced around the league for five years, amassing ten career home runs... 20% wet dongs isn't bad.
Splash Hits by Giants Player
Here is the graph showing the top thirteen Splash Hit bombers for the Giants. No surprise that Barry Bonds is alone at the top (and will probably stay there until we get Ohtani next season). Take a shot if you thought you'd see Aubrey Huff in this post.
I was pretty surprised that Brandon Belt was #2, considering that he never achieved the power numbers it seemed like he could. Regardless, hitting almost
one Splash Hit per year as a Giant was enough to get him there. It's great to see current players Yaz, Lamonte, and Joc moving up each season, and I think Joc will take #2 from Belt if he stays a few more years.
Data Giants Splash Hits
Table formatting brought to you by ExcelToReddit Count of Giants Splash Hits by Player
|Splash Hit ||Batter ||Date ||Pitcher |
|1 ||Barry Bonds ||5/1/2000 ||Rich Rodriguez |
|2 ||Barry Bonds ||5/10/2000 ||Andy Benes |
|3 ||Barry Bonds ||5/10/2000 ||Heathcliff Slocumb |
|4 ||Barry Bonds ||5/24/2000 ||Mike Thurman |
|5 ||Barry Bonds ||7/19/2000 ||Brian Meadows |
|6 ||Barry Bonds ||9/20/2000 ||Steve Parris |
|7 ||Barry Bonds ||4/17/2001 ||Terry Adams |
|8 ||Barry Bonds ||4/18/2001 ||Chan Ho Park |
|9 ||Barry Bonds ||5/24/2001 ||John Thomson |
|10 ||Felipe Crespo ||5/28/2001 ||Bret Prinz |
|11 ||Barry Bonds ||5/30/2001 ||Robert Ellis |
|12 ||Barry Bonds ||6/12/2001 ||Pat Rapp |
|13 ||Felipe Crespo ||7/28/2001 ||Curtis Leskanic |
|14 ||Barry Bonds ||8/4/2001 ||Nelson Figueroa |
|15 ||Barry Bonds ||8/14/2001 ||Ricky Bones |
|16 ||Barry Bonds ||8/31/2001 ||John Thomson |
|17 ||Barry Bonds ||9/29/2001 ||Chuck McElroy |
|18 ||Barry Bonds ||5/13/2002 ||Kevin Millwood |
|19 ||Barry Bonds ||5/18/2002 ||Brad Penny |
|20 ||Barry Bonds ||5/18/2002 ||Vic Darensbourg |
|21 ||Barry Bonds ||9/8/2002 ||Brian Anderson |
|22 ||Barry Bonds ||9/28/2002 ||Jeriome Robertson |
|23 ||Barry Bonds ||10/12/2002 ||Chuck Finley |
|24 ||Barry Bonds ||4/14/2003 ||Wade Miller |
|25 ||Barry Bonds ||4/30/2003 ||Matt Clement |
|26 ||J.T. Snow ||6/5/2003 ||Kyle Lohse |
|27 ||Barry Bonds ||6/27/2003 ||Ted Lilly |
|28 ||Jose Cruz, Jr. ||7/8/2003 ||Dan Haren |
|29 ||Barry Bonds ||8/8/2003 ||Jose Mesa |
|30 ||Barry Bonds ||8/19/2003 ||Ray King |
|31 ||Barry Bonds ||9/13/2003 ||Doug Davis |
|32 ||Barry Bonds ||4/12/2004 ||Matt Kinney |
|33 ||Barry Bonds ||4/13/2004 ||Ben Ford |
|34 ||Michael Tucker ||5/30/2004 ||Joe Kennedy |
|35 ||A.J. Pierzynski ||7/6/2004 ||Denny Stark |
|36 ||Barry Bonds ||7/30/2004 ||Chris Carpenter |
|37 ||Barry Bonds ||8/3/2004 ||Cory Lidle |
|38 ||Michael Tucker ||4/9/2005 ||Scott Dohmann |
|39 ||Randy Winn ||9/14/2005 ||Woody Williams |
|40 ||Barry Bonds ||9/18/2005 ||Hong-Chih Kuo |
|41 ||Barry Bonds ||8/21/2006 ||Livan Hernandez |
|42 ||Barry Bonds ||4/18/2007 ||Ryan Franklin |
|43 ||Ryan Klesko ||5/21/2007 ||Trever Miller |
|44 ||Ryan Klesko ||6/29/2007 ||Livan Hernandez |
|45 ||Barry Bonds ||8/8/2007 ||Tim Redding |
|46 ||Fred Lewis ||4/26/2008 ||Matt Belisle |
|47 ||John Bowker ||7/2/2008 ||Ryan Dempster |
|48 ||Andres Torres ||6/15/2009 ||John Lackey |
|49 ||Pablo Sandoval ||7/30/2009 ||Rodrigo Lopez |
|50 ||Pablo Sandoval ||8/29/2009 ||Jason Marquis |
|51 ||Aubrey Huff ||5/1/2010 ||Rafael Betancourt |
|52 ||Aubrey Huff ||6/16/2010 ||Jeremy Guthrie |
|53 ||Andres Torres ||7/28/2010 ||Jorge Sosa |
|54 ||Pablo Sandoval ||8/12/2010 ||Randy Wells |
|55 ||Pablo Sandoval ||9/30/2010 ||Barry Enright |
|56 ||Pablo Sandoval ||7/4/2011 ||Ernesto Frieri |
|57 ||Nate Schierholtz ||7/8/2011 ||R.A. Dickey |
|58 ||Pablo Sandoval ||8/31/2011 ||Rodrigo Lopez |
|59 ||Carlos Beltran ||9/14/2011 ||Mat Latos |
|60 ||Brandon Belt ||9/27/2011 ||Alex White |
|61 ||Brandon Belt ||6/14/2012 ||Wandy Rodriguez |
|62 ||Brandon Belt ||9/4/2012 ||Ian Kennedy |
|63 ||Pablo Sandoval ||5/12/2013 ||Kris Medlen |
|64 ||Brandon Crawford ||4/13/2014 ||Rex Brothers |
|65 ||Tyler Colvin ||5/12/2014 ||Gavin Floyd |
|66 ||Brandon Crawford ||5/14/2014 ||David Carpenter |
|67 ||Travis Ishikawa ||9/12/2014 ||Kevin Correia |
|68 ||Brandon Belt ||9/25/2014 ||Andrew Cashner |
|69 ||Brandon Belt ||6/8/2016 ||David Price |
|70 ||Denard Span ||6/13/2016 ||Chase Anderson |
|71 ||Denard Span ||8/20/2016 ||Bartolo Colon |
|72 ||Brandon Belt ||5/13/2017 ||Lisalverto Bonilla |
|73 ||Brandon Belt ||6/10/2017 ||Jose Berrios |
|74 ||Denard Span ||7/7/2017 ||Dan Straily |
|75 ||Denard Span ||7/19/2017 ||Carlos Carrasco |
|76 ||Denard Span ||9/11/2017 ||Kenta Maeda |
|77 ||Pablo Sandoval ||4/4/2018 ||Felix Hernandez |
|78 ||Brandon Belt ||5/15/2018 ||Tyler Mahle |
|79 ||Stephen Vogt ||8/9/2019 ||Drew Smyly |
|80 ||Scooter Gennett ||8/11/2019 ||Jake Arrieta |
|81 ||Brandon Belt ||8/29/2019 ||Chris Paddack |
|82 ||Mike Yastrzemski ||7/29/2020 ||Matt Strahm |
|83 ||Mike Yastrzemski ||9/25/2020 ||Chris Paddack |
|84 ||Mike Yastrzemski ||4/24/2021 ||Yimi Garcia |
|85 ||Brandon Crawford ||4/27/2021 ||Daniel Bard |
|86 ||Steven Duggar ||6/15/2021 ||Alex Young |
|87 ||Mike Yastrzemski ||6/15/2021 ||Humberto Castellanos |
|88 ||Brandon Belt ||6/19/2021 ||Aaron Nola |
|89 ||LaMonte Wade, Jr. ||7/31/2021 ||Zack Greinke |
|90 ||Alex Dickerson ||8/11/2021 ||Tyler Clippard |
|91 ||LaMonte Wade, Jr. ||9/17/2021 ||Ian Anderson |
|92 ||Jason Vosler ||4/30/2022 ||Erasmo Ramírez |
|93 ||Mike Yastrzemski ||5/8/2022 ||Génesis Cabrera |
|94 ||Joc Pederson ||5/24/2022 ||Drew Smith |
|95 ||LaMonte Wade, Jr. ||7/17/2022 ||Jason Alexander |
|96 ||Joc Pederson ||8/30/2022 ||Nick Martinez |
|97 ||Joc Pederson ||9/2/2022 ||Kyle Gibson |
|98 ||LaMonte Wade, Jr. ||4/8/2023 ||Brady Singe |
|99 ||Brandon Crawford ||4/22/2023 ||David Peterson |
|100 ||LaMonte Wade, Jr. ||6/2/2023 ||Dean Kremer |
Table formatting brought to you by ExcelToReddit Count of Splash Hits Surrendered by Giants Pitchers
|Batter ||Count |
|Barry Bonds ||35 |
|Brandon Belt ||10 |
|Pablo Sandoval ||8 |
|Denard Span ||5 |
|Mike Yastrzemski ||5 |
|LaMonte Wade, Jr. ||5 |
|Brandon Crawford ||4 |
|Joc Pederson ||3 |
|Felipe Crespo ||2 |
|Michael Tucker ||2 |
|Ryan Klesko ||2 |
|Andres Torres ||2 |
|Aubrey Huff ||2 |
|J.T. Snow ||1 |
|Jose Cruz, Jr. ||1 |
|A.J. Pierzynski ||1 |
|Randy Winn ||1 |
|Fred Lewis ||1 |
|John Bowker ||1 |
|Nate Schierholtz ||1 |
|Carlos Beltran ||1 |
|Tyler Colvin ||1 |
|Travis Ishikawa ||1 |
|Stephen Vogt ||1 |
|Scooter Gennett ||1 |
|Steven Duggar ||1 |
|Alex Dickerson ||1 |
|Jason Vosler ||1 |
Table formatting brought to you by ExcelToReddit Opposing Players Splash Hits
|Pitcher ||Count |
|Tim Lincecum ||5 |
|Anthony DeSclafani ||2 |
|Madison Bumgarner ||2 |
|Johnny Cueto ||2 |
|Hunter Strickland ||2 |
|Ryan Vogelsong ||2 |
|Tim Hudson ||2 |
|Matt Cain ||2 |
|Kevin Correia ||2 |
|Matt Morris ||2 |
|Brett Tomko ||2 |
|Jacob Junis ||1 |
|Kevin Gausman ||1 |
|Trevor Gott ||1 |
|Jeff Samardzija ||1 |
|Tony Watson ||1 |
|Shaun Anderson ||1 |
|Connor Menez ||1 |
|Chris Stratton ||1 |
|Will Smith ||1 |
|Ray Black ||1 |
|Matt Moore ||1 |
|George Kontos ||1 |
|Yusmiero Petit ||1 |
|Jake Peavy ||1 |
|Javier Lopez ||1 |
|Barry Zito ||1 |
|Ramon Ramirez ||1 |
|Sergio Romo ||1 |
|Jonathan Sanchez ||1 |
|Osiris Matos ||1 |
|Vinnie Chulk ||1 |
|Jamey Wright ||1 |
|Brad Hennessey ||1 |
|Jason Schmidt ||1 |
|Tyler Walker ||1 |
|Ryan Jensen ||1 |
|Kirk Rueter ||1 |
|Tim Worrell ||1 |
|Shawn Estes ||1 |
|Robb Nen ||1 |
Table formatting brought to you by ExcelToReddit Count of Splash Hits by Opposing Team
|Splash Hit ||Batter ||Team ||Date ||Pitcher |
|1 ||Todd Hundley ||LAA ||6/30/2000 ||Robb Nen |
|2 ||Luis Gonzalez ||AZ ||9/23/2000 ||Shawn Estes |
|3 ||Mark Grace ||AZ ||5/28/2001 ||Tim Worrell |
|4 ||Luis Gonzalez ||AZ ||5/30/2002 ||Kirk Rueter |
|5 ||Ryan Klesko ||SD ||4/9/2003 ||Ryan Jensen |
|6 ||Hee Seop Choi ||FLA ||4/30/2004 ||Kevin Correia |
|7 ||Corey Patterson ||CHC ||8/7/2004 ||Tyler Walker |
|8 ||Cliff Floyd ||NYM ||8/21/2004 ||Brett Tomko |
|9 ||Russell Branyan ||MIL ||4/23/2005 ||Brett Tomko |
|10 ||Larry Walker ||STL ||7/8/2005 ||Jason Schmidt |
|11 ||Carlos Delgado ||FLA ||7/23/2005 ||Brad Hennessey |
|12 ||Cliff Floyd ||NYM ||4/25/2006 ||Jamey Wright |
|13 ||Carlos Delgado ||NYM ||4/26/2006 ||Matt Morris |
|14 ||Carlos Delgado ||NYM ||5/9/2007 ||Matt Morris |
|15 ||Adam LaRoche ||PIT ||8/11/2007 ||Tim Lincecum |
|16 ||Lance Berkman ||HOU ||5/15/2008 ||Vinnie Chulk |
|17 ||Prince Fielder ||MIL ||7/19/2008 ||Osiris Matos |
|18 ||Brian Giles ||SD ||8/24/2008 ||Kevin Correia |
|19 ||Miguel Montero ||ARI ||9/29/2009 ||Jonathan Sanchez |
|20 ||David Ortiz ||BOS ||6/27/2010 ||Tim Lincecum |
|21 ||Adam LaRoche ||ARI ||8/27/2010 ||Tim Lincecum |
|22 ||Adam LaRoche ||ARI ||8/28/2010 ||Sergio Romo |
|23 ||Rick Ankiel ||ATL ||10/8/2010 ||Ramon Ramirez |
|24 ||Dioner Navarro ||LAD ||7/20/2011 ||Tim Lincecum |
|25 ||Mitch Moreland ||TEX ||6/9/2012 ||Ryan Vogelsong |
|26 ||Brian McCann ||ATL ||5/10/2013 ||Matt Cain |
|27 ||Carlos Gonzalez ||COL ||5/25/2013 ||Barry Zito |
|28 ||Garrett Jones ||PIT ||8/22/2013 ||Matt Cain |
|29 ||Carlos Gonzales ||COL ||4/11/2014 ||Madison Bumgarner |
|30 ||Yasmani Grandal ||SD ||4/30/2014 ||Tim Hudson |
|31 ||Freddie Freeman ||ATL ||5/12/2014 ||Javier Lopez |
|32 ||Curtis Granderson ||NYM ||6/8/2014 ||Tim Lincecum |
|33 ||Adam Dunn ||CWS ||8/13/2014 ||Jake Peavy |
|34 ||Corey Dickerson ||COL ||8/27/2014 ||Tim Hudson |
|35 ||Ender Inciarte ||ARI ||9/9/2014 ||Yusmiero Petit |
|36 ||Bryce Harper ||WAS ||10/7/2014 ||Hunter Strickland |
|37 ||Cody Asche ||PHI ||7/11/2015 ||Ryan Vogelsong |
|38 ||Ben Zobrist ||CHC ||5/20/2016 ||George Kontos |
|39 ||Joc Pederson ||LAD ||6/12/2016 ||Hunter Strickland |
|40 ||Curtis Granderson ||NYM ||8/19/2016 ||Johnny Cueto |
|41 ||Chase Utley ||LAD ||9/12/2017 ||Johnny Cueto |
|42 ||Cody Bellinger ||LAD ||9/13/2017 ||Matt Moore |
|43 ||Matt Carpenter ||STL ||7/820/18 ||Ray Black |
|44 ||Rougned Odor ||TEX ||8/24/2018 ||Will Smith |
|45 ||Max Muncy ||LAD ||9/30/2018 ||Chris Stratton |
|46 ||Max Muncy ||LAD ||6/9/2019 ||Madison Bumgarner |
|47 ||Michael Conforto ||NYM ||7/21/2019 ||Connor Menez |
|48 ||Robel Garcia ||CHC ||7/22/2019 ||Shaun Anderson |
|49 ||Bryce Harper ||PHI ||8/9/2019 ||Tony Watson |
|50 ||Shin-Soo Choo ||TEX ||8/2/2020 ||Jeff Samardzija |
|51 ||Daulton Varsho ||ARI ||9/5/2020 ||Trevor Gott |
|52 ||Mike Moustakas ||CIN ||4/13/2021 ||Kevin Gausman |
|53 ||Joc Pederson ||CHC ||6/3/2021 ||Anthony DeSclafani |
|54 ||Bryson Stott ||PHI ||9/3/2022 ||Jacob Junis |
|55 ||Jack Suwinski ||PIT ||5/29/2023 ||Anthony DeSclafani |
Table formatting brought to you by ExcelToReddit
|Team ||Count |
|Arizona Diamondbacks ||8 |
|New York Mets ||7 |
|Los Angeles Dodgers ||6 |
|Chicago Cubs ||4 |
|Pittsburgh Pirates ||3 |
|Philadelphia Phillies ||3 |
|Texas Rangers ||3 |
|Colorado Rockies ||3 |
|Atlanta Braves ||3 |
|San Diego Padres ||3 |
|St. Louis Cardinals ||2 |
|Milwaukee Brewers ||2 |
|Miami Marlins ||2 |
|Cincinnati Reds ||1 |
|Washington Nationals ||1 |
|Chicago White Sox ||1 |
|Boston Red Sox ||1 |
|Houston Astros ||1 |
|Los Angeles Angels ||1 |
|Cleveland Guardians ||0 |
|Detroit Tigers ||0 |
|Kansas City Royals ||0 |
|Minnesota Twins ||0 |
|Baltimore Orioles ||0 |
|New York Yankees ||0 |
|Tampa Bay Rays ||0 |
|Toronto Blue Jays ||0 |
|Oakland Athletics ||0 |
|Seattle Mariners ||0 |
2023.06.08 02:58 UpinthatBuckethead Green Lantern #34 - Reunited
DC Next presents:
GREEN LANTERN Issue Thirty-Four: Reunited
Written by UpinthatBuckethead
Edited by AdamantAce
, DeadIslandMan1 First Next >
Coming Next Month The warm breeze swept across the field, rustling the golden stalks of wheat as the sun bathed the landscape in a radiant glow. A tall, heavily-built man, dark-skinned with work-worn hands, stood amidst the vast expanse, his heart pounding with a mix of confusion and wonder.
As he inhaled, a familiar scent filled his nostrils. Was that... home? His gaze shifted, scanning the surroundings until he caught sight of a group of individuals emerging from a shimmering portal. The sight of them took his breath away, his eyes widening with surprise.
"Starfire? Is that you?" His deep voice carried a tremor of disbelief as he called out, his words infused with a sense of hope mingled with uncertainty. He couldn't believe his eyes; the woman standing before him bore a striking resemblance to the Starfire he once knew, a fellow member of the superhero community. But now, she was a fully-fledged member of the Green Lantern Corps!
His heart raced. He took a cautious step forward, his eyes never leaving her face. The sunlight glinted off his dark, weathered skin, accentuating the lines etched on his face from years of experience and battles fought. Clad in a black leather jacket as well as camouflage utility pants, he exuded a mix of ruggedness and determination.
Kory quickly wrapped her arms around his neck and squeezed tight. “We thought you were dead,” she whispered in his ear.
John's eyes widened as he heard the familiar voice, the name he thought he might never hear again. A surge of emotion overwhelmed him, and he closed his arms around her, enfolding her in a tight embrace.
Tears welled up in John's eyes as he held his friend, his grip conveying a mixture of relief, joy, and sorrow. The weight of the world and the torment of his absence seemed to dissipate, anchoring him to the present. His voice quivered with a mixture of gratitude and disbelief as he whispered into her ear, his words barely audible above the rustling of the wheat field.
"I'm here... I'm alive." His voice carried the weight of the countless moments he had yearned for this reunion; the ache of the void they had filled with unanswered questions.
As the group drew closer, John was able to make them out through his teary eyes. With Kory were Ganthet, Sodam Yat, Tomar-Tu, and Ch'p. His mind raced with questions and the need for answers. How had Starfire become a Green Lantern? Why was Ganthet with them? Where were the Guardians of the Universe? What in God's name had transpired during his absence?
The wheat field whispered into the wind, as if the very land held a story waiting to be unveiled. He was sure they had similar questions. John's eyes scanned the group, his gaze lingering on each individual. He sought familiarity, searching for any sign that would confirm that this was reality - not some intricate illusion.
In that moment, time seemed to stand still. The weight of the past five years pressed upon John's shoulders, mingling with a spark of renewed hope. The mystery of his absence and the potential reunion with old friends lay before him, entwined in the lush field and the enigma of the portal that had brought them together.
With bated breath, John Stewart braced himself for the answers that awaited, ready to confront the truth and uncover the reason for his absence in the first place. “What happened?”
“I was about to ask the same. Is that a... yellow ring?” Kory held his hand close, examining the unfamiliar artifact on his finger.
“We can exchange tales in the safety of shelter,” Ganthet reasoned, interrupting Kory before she could ask any more questions. “Do you have any, Lantern Stewart?”
“I do,” John responded. “I'll take you there, but we need to move quickly - the sun is waning, and the shadow beasts are more active at night.”
Ganthet nodded and John began to lead the group through the field of wheat. Before she followed, Kory looked up into the cloudless sky. She squinted her eyes at the crescent sun. The sight filled her with a sense of foreboding as the dark disk inched closer and closer to the light's edge, as though it were a harbinger of struggles to come.
The five Lanterns funneled behind John into the small, sparse cabin. He apologized for the lack of seating, offering one of two plainly crafted chairs to Ganthet. Tomar sat in the other, and it looked like John was going to say something, but ultimately decided to turn away and light a fire under the stove. Ganthet beckoned John close as warmth filled the cabin. His voice was filled with a mix of solemnity and compassion. "Before anything else, there is a tale that must be told—a tale of betrayal and darkness that unfolded five years ago."
John took a deep breath. Five years ago, he and Guy Gardner had been trapped in the Antimatter Universe. That was when they had lost contact with the Corps. Steeling himself for the weight of what was about to be revealed, he nodded silently, eyes fixed upon Ganthet, urging him to go on.
Ganthet's gaze held a deep sadness as he began, his voice measured and laden with the weight of the past. "It was a time of great and sudden turmoil, John. Hal Jordan, once a beacon of hope and your fellow Green Lantern, was consumed by grief and anger. Blaming the Justice League for the destruction of his beloved Coast City, he turned against those he once called allies.”
John's heart sank, the memories of the camaraderie he shared with Hal flooding back. "What did he do, Ganthet?" he whispered, his voice filled with a mix of anticipation and dread.
"He unleashed his fury upon them," Ganthet continued, his voice growing heavy with sorrow. "In his misguided quest for power, Hal took the lives of Lantern Rayner, Wonder Woman and Batman."
John clenched his fists, the pain of losing Kyle coursing through him. But he remained silent, urging Ganthet to reveal the full extent of the tragedy.
"His rampage did not stop there," Ganthet recounted, his voice trembling under the weight of revelation. "Lantern Jordan, now calling himself Parallax, driven by his desperation to rewrite reality and undo his perceived failures, turned against the Green Lantern Corps itself. With a destructive fury, he annihilated all but seven Lanterns, obliterating their rings and leaving our once-mighty Corps in ruins."
The room seemed to grow colder, the air thick with the bitterness of betrayal. John's eyes burned with unshed tears, his heart heavy with the knowledge of the devastation wrought by someone he had once trusted implicitly. Ganthet's gaze never wavered, his voice filled with empathy as he concluded, "That, Lantern Stewart, is the tragic tale of Hal Jordan's betrayal—the fall of a hero we all once held dear."
John sat in stunned silence, his mind grappling with the enormity of the revelation. The weight of loss and shattered trust settled upon him, fueling a mix of grief, anger, and determination within him. Ganthet reached out, resting his hand gently on John's shoulder, offering solace and support.
"I understand the burden you now carry, John," he said softly. "But it is in the face of such darkness that true heroes emerge. The path ahead may be treacherous, but together, we will seek justice for the fallen and restore hope to our shattered Corps."
As the room enveloped them in a heavy silence, John looked at Ganthet's Green Lantern-stylized robes. “Is that why...?”
Ganthet confirmed solemnly
“And that ring, it was Kyle's?” John asked Kory, who nodded silently. “I see.”
As a solemn quiet enveloped the room, all eyes turned to John. The revelation of Hal Jordan's betrayal was a wound still raw, the loss cutting deep. The flickering fire cast a gentle, haunting glow over his face, adding gravity to the story he was about to share. John Stewart's stoic countenance wavered for a moment. His gaze was dark, full of untold stories. He opened his mouth to speak, and the tale he wove carried them back in time, taking them through the labyrinth of his memories.
"I suppose it's my turn, then. Five years ago," he began, his voice resonating with a haunting echo, "Guy and I were in pursuit of Sinestro. We entered the Antimatter Universe, expecting to face challenges, sure. But nothing prepared us for what lay ahead."
His eyes dropped to the worn floorboards, lost in painful recollection. "We were met with an ambush. We barely managed to escape, finding solace in the hidden crevices of one of the planetoids in this realm. It was then that we tried to call the Corps...but got nothing."
Silence fell like a shroud, consuming the space between his words as he allowed them to digest this piece of his past. The Green Lantern Corps' moment of great crisis, leaving them stranded in the Antimatter Universe. His expression hardened as he continued, his voice barely more than a whisper. "We tried to initiate contact several times over the course of hours, but our rings... they were being constantly drained. With no means to make a portal, and no way to recharge, we slowly lost power. I still remember the moment my ring went dark. It felt as if a part of me was wrenched away. Not long after, Guy's ring lost power too. We were left alone, on a world filled with death and desolation."
John's voice carried a grimness that bespoke the harsh realities he'd faced. “The Antimatter Universe has a way of sapping hope, of painting a picture bleaker than the darkest night. As the Yellow Lanterns began their relentless patrols in search of us, the threat of discovery loomed like a storm cloud.
“A new determination took root in Guy, like a second wind. He came up with a plan," John confessed, a hint of a smile playing on his lips at the memory of Guy's fierce nature. "He wanted to use the unstable gravity of this universe, to launch himself towards a Yellow Lantern. He hoped that we could channel our remaining willpower and then focus it into one all-out attack from above."
The room went quiet as they hung on his words. "It was risky, insane even," John admitted, "but we were out of options. And with the Corps gone silent, we didn't know what awaited us back on Oa."
He paused, his gaze taking in each of the faces in the room, reflecting the gravity of their situation. He drew in a deep breath, continuing with an intensity that held them all captive. "I can still remember the adrenaline, the desperation, and the dread. We both knew it was a long shot, but Guy... he was ready. God, you should have seen him."
The silence stretched out once again, a hushed expectation hanging heavy in the air as they waited for him to continue. The crackle of the fire was the only sound in the otherwise silent room.
"So, I threw him,” John stated, the words punctuating the silence. His gaze became distant, reliving the moment. “I gave Guy all of the power I could muster. When he came face to face with Arkillo, and made a construct? The bang was like the blast of a rifle. I had to duck and cover my ears, but I was able to hear his ring speak.”
The room fell silent as the gravity of his words sank in. Everyone was hanging on to his every word, their gazes fixated on John as they awaited the words his friend's ring had spoken.
“What did the ring say?” Ganthet inquired, his eyes intensely focused on John. The elder Lantern's voice was a soft murmur in the room, adding an air of anticipation.
John cleared his throat, preparing himself for the words that had been echoing in his head since that moment.
“Guy Gardner, you have the ability to overcome great injustice.”
“Welcome, Golden Lantern.”
submitted by UpinthatBuckethead
to DCNext [link] [comments]
2023.06.08 02:45 No_Needleworker_7847 TIL in 1780, in an event known as Dark Day, New England was cast into blackness as a result of Ontario wildfires mixed with unfavorable atmospheric conditions. Such was the lack of light, candles were needed in the day to provide illumination. Parts of New Hampshire were covered in ash 6" deep.
2023.06.08 02:14 The_Alloquist [A Lord of Death] - Chapter 62 (Aya)
[←Chapter 61] [Cover Art] [My Links] [Index] [Discord] [Subreddit] [Chapter 63→]
Balae and Kieren managed to compose themselves before Aya had a chance to speak.
“Excuse us, excuse us,” said the older merchant, attempting to straigten his robes, “yes, yes, I certainly know that house symbol.”
“What is it? What’s wrong?” Aya said, terrified that she’d caused some great offense to this friendly man.
“Nothing’s wrong my dear, it’s just…” Balae began, his eyes trailing toward the device in her hands.
“You carry with you a personal sygil of a house, young lady,” cut in Kieren, “that’s synoptic bronze, and might very be centuries old. It’s priceless.”
“That’s why we were so shocked. It’s not something you simply give!” laughed Balae, although it had a nervous edge, “your mother must’ve been treasured by her family to receive something that precious.”
Aya’s hand retracted slightly, holding the bronze close to her breast, and thinking about the expression of her mother when she’d handed it to her. Had she known it was that precious, she would’ve been more careful with it. Thank the Lost that she’d not lost it in the river when she fell in under the earth.
“Well, my friend,” said Balae, “I think we can be of some aid. However, the city canals are blocked off in preparation for the festival. And I don’t doubt the house of your mother is up to the gills with work! It’d best be settled in the morning when everyone is fresh and rested. Have a good evening, and we can absolutely find them in the morning.”
“Of course,” Lillian said, “thank you so much. Aya, please, if you would.”
“Thank you,” she said, offering a little bow as she was carted away.
“Think nothing of it!” they called to her, as they were taken to another exit from the pyramid.
They were lead up a wooden stare case, into a series of apartments. It was a very strange building, with only a few solid central walls. The rest of the rooms were made of sliding panels of wood and paper. Every room had mats of interwoven reeds that softened the step and warmed the floor.
The place they were led was a partition of two separate rooms, one for the girls, the other for men. There was a large, covered bed that Lillian insisted that Sorore and Aya take, while the housekeeper promised to send for additional blankets for her. As soon as they were alone, the paladin took Aya by the hand and looked her sternly in the eye.
“It wasn’t wise to do that,” she said, “to present your family’s sigil.”
“Why not?” Aya asked, genuinely confused.
“We’re only planning to be in the town for a few days, nothing more,” Lillian said, “whatever reunion you might have would be short, and would likely only serve to complicate matters more.”
“What?” Aya said, holding Lillian’s gaze firmly, “what do you mean ‘complicate’ things? I want to see my mother’s family while I’m here. Why would it matter if it was only a few days?”
“I’ve said my piece,” Lillian said, letting go and turning away to strip her heavy plate.
“No you haven’t,” said Aya, grasping her firm shoulder and attempting to turn her around, “look at me. You’re not telling me something.”
“I have told you everything you need to know. Now, I suggest you get some rest,” Lillian said, removing one shoulder plate and setting it carefully down on the ground.
“Why are you avoiding the question?” she said.
The paladin said nothing, and Sorore stepped forward to sooth the girl.
“Come on,” she said, “let’s prepare for bed. We can talk more about it in the morning, when we’re all less tired.”
She and Aya washed and dried themselves, in basins provided by the housekeeper. She was careful to note that towels were made in Nieth, hand embroidered and used in their great baths. Sorore was first to crawl under the light covers and settle in, turning towards Aya.
“Come on,” she said, reaching out for her in a playful way, “sleep will make things better. It’s so nice having an actual bed.”
“I… don’t feel tired,” said Aya, “I think I’m going outside. Just to the balcony. Am I allowed to do that?”
She gave a sharp look at Lillian, who was in the middle of addressing a cut along her side that had opened.
“Am I going to have to run after you?” she said, returning the look.
“No. Unless the balconies are going to kill me,” retorted Aya.
“Then you may,” she said, turning back to dress her wound.
Aya pushed open one of the sliding panels, walked across the hallway, and opened one of the doors to the balcony. The air here was so delightfully warm, even in the middle of the night. The mountain air was chilly even in the height of summer. The balcony was large, running across the entire length of the floor that she was on, with a solid railing running across it.
She was glad for the railing as she slid her thin legs between the slates, looking out at the dense city before her. Her eyes carried her out towards a cloudless sky, where the moonlight glittered on the dark waters of the sea beyond. The only thing that broke it up was the thousands of vessels of various sizes, whose lamps cast a warm orange glow across the water.
She lay her head on the top of the railing, closing her eyes and letting the breeze flow over here. Even the salty smell of the waters beyond and below was comforting in a way the mountains had never been. There was something deep within her that called to this place - it made sense that her mother had come from this place, and had seemed so out of it in the mountain village.
She wondered what exactly her family was like here, and what they did. Her grandmother was a chief, or was - perhaps she was retired to happy family life now. She imagined a kindly woman in the recesses of advanced age, all wrinkles and grey hair, sitting back in a chair by the fire. She would tell stories of all the happenings of the city, and all the mischief that she’d gotten up to in her youth. Perhaps she’d even take the time, weary as she was, to cook with Aya, and share secrets that had taken a lifetime to accrue-
“Hi,” came a voice, as something sat with a thump besides her.
Her eyes flickered open at the interruption, and there was Frare, his red hair dark in the evening.
“What are you doing here?” she sighed, closing her eyes again and trying to get back to that dreamlike state.
“Got bored. Niche is boring,” he said with his now familiar bluntness, “besides, I don’t like being in those rooms. Too small. I always preferred being… out.”
“And why are you talking to me?”
“Because you’re not boring, most of the time.”
“Thanks,” she said, opening her eyes once more, knowing that the tranquil calm she’d felt was permanently shattered.
“You’re welcome,” he said, either oblivious to or ignoring the sarcasm.
There was a silence for a time, broken only by Frare kicking his feet against the balcony.
“So, why do you think they’re all lying?”
“What?” Aya said.
“The paladins, the trader, they’re all lying,” he said, with perfect confidence, “it’s obvious.”
“Lying about what?”
“You think they were surprised at the device? Nope. That was quick thinking by Kieren. They only reacted after they saw the sigil. So, they were terrified because of who your family is.”
“Oh,” said Aya, the doubts in her head falling into place with the words.
“You didn’t notice. Well here’s another thing,” Frare said, clearly pleased with himself, “Lillian was panicked as soon as you started asking about your family. It was written, all over her face, plain as day.”
“Really?” she said.
She’d known Lillian wasn’t telling the whole truth, but she’d not had the chance to look at her during the exchange with the merchant.
“Yup,” Frare said with a grin, “so she knows, or suspects, that your family is trouble.”
“Huh,” she said.
“Not the first time that she’s kept stuff from us,” Frare said, “I think she pretends to be stupider than she really is.”
“Well, there’s no point to it,” Aya said, closing her eyes once more, “we’ll settle it in the morning.”
“You really think so?” Frare said, tapping his feet on the balcony struts.
“You doubt the hosts?”
“Oh, absolutely. Would you leave it to the morning if you were them?”
“So, you think that they’ve… what?”
“Well, from the way they reacted, it sounds like your family’s cursed. Wouldn’t be surprised if they tried to kill us.”
“What?!” Aya said, her eyes snapping open to try and detect any sense of sarcasm from the boy.
She found him still grinning, but not in a way that suggested that it was humorous.
“That’s ridiculous,” she said, raising her head, “they’re our hosts.”
“And the paladin’s are supposed to be protectors. What kind of protectors lie to their wards?” Frare shrugged.
Aya found that she had no good argument to that, though she did try.
“Although, maybe I’m wrong,” he said, “perhaps tonight, perhaps tomorrow, we’ll see soon enough I suppose.”
“You seem to be making an awful effort to be careless,” she said, noting his dangling feet’s persistent effort to tap out a whole song on the struts.
“I don’t care,” Frare said, “it’s just the way things are.”
“Uh-huh,” she said, “if that’s so, then why did you not bring it up to the paladins, or your sister?”
“What good would it do? With the paladins, they’d just refuse. As for Sorore…”
He looked down at his feet and kicked them harder, as if trying to drive off doubts.
“She gets worried easily,” he said, “I wouldn’t want to make her upset.”
The insight, quite unannounced nor predicated on any physical sight, plopped right into Aya’s head.
“I don’t think you’re talking about your sister,” she said, looking at the boy with renewed interest.
“What? Of course I am. I said ‘Sorore’,” he said.
There it was, the nervous flit of the eyes, subtle, but definite. How could she not have noticed before? It was plain as the nose on his face.
“Oh really?” she said, “then tell me, if things are just the way they are which you certainly don’t care about. Why are you trying to explain them to me? Why even bother, why not just go to bed, and skip the boring parts?”
Frare faltered, just for a moment, but it was enough to seize upon.
“Maybe it's because you’re afraid of the dreams?”
Right on target. His eyes fell, the kicking grew louder, and his fingers began to twitch ever so slightly.
“Well,” he said, “there’s also that.”
Aya blinked - she thought he would bluster, would deny, and yet here he was giving it all up without a fight. Her emotions melted from annoyance and jeering if playful conflict, to a sense of solidarity.
“Yeah, there is,” she said, running her fingers through her hair, “I had one this morning. It was like, an endless lake, mirroring the sky. And there was something big in the water, circling me. It almost… said something, I think.”
The boy was silent for a moment, trying to piece together something to say.
“I did too,” he finally spoke out to the world, as if it was some shameful secret.
“Do tell,” she said, yawning.
He looked at her, and she could see a genuine pang of fear.
“It was a tree, a big tree, bigger than this house, than this entire city,” he said, “its bark was… just… drenched. Red, red everywhere. Waterfalls across its whole length. There was the sound of weeping, from within the tree, so I went closer.”
His face was hidden in his hands.
“I tried to push into the tree, tried to find the voice,” he said, “I got covered, then I realized… it was all blood. The red.”
The boy was trying to choke back a sob at the word ‘blood’. Aya, unable to stop herself, reached over and pulled him into a hug. Quietly, terribly, he began to cry, his shoulders shaking in her arms. They stayed like that for a good few minutes, even after he’d managed to calm himself.
“I’m sorry,” he suddenly said, pushing her away, face burning with shame.
“No, it’s okay, I-” she said, reaching for him as he stood.
A hurried ‘good night’, and he vanished into the corridor before she could stop him. She sighed, and looked out once more to the moon and the silver sea. It was a moment before she realised that a pale light was bleeding through her arms. There was no pain, nor disorientating visions, only the steady pulse of thin lines, etched into her skin.
“Why are you doing this?” she said to the lines, hoping against hope that there might be a response.
There was nothing. Figures.
“I should go apologise to him,” she said, leaving ‘and check if he’s okay’ unsaid to the air.
“She be fine, she always is,” said a voice from behind her.
“Who said that?” she practically shouted.
She whirled, finding only Lillian there with a surprised expression.
“I didn’t say anything, my lady,” she said, looking around.
“I thought I heard… never mind, it was some errant wind I guess,” she said quickly.
Lillian shut the sliding door behind her as she came to sit beside the girl. She looked uncomfortable without her armour on, as if it was a second skin that had simply vanished into thin air. Still, she kept a short sword at her side, along with a significant knife. Aya had no doubt if they experienced any interruptions tonight, a threat would find her just as dangerous as with full plate.
“My lady,” she said, “I feel as if I owe you an apology.”
Her annoyance returned, hotter than before.
“Well? Get on with it,” she said.
“I feel… I feel as if we’ve gotten off on the wrong foot,” she said, her smile weak, “afterall, even I forget that we only meet… my word, less than a week ago. We hardly know each other, and I took you from your home, farther than you might’ve ever been.”
Aya waited for her to continue, her own feet beginning to drum on the struts.
“I know that I seem secretive and unresponsive at times,” she said, “I do withhold information that I think would be harmful to you. Things I don’t think you need to know, and might cause you grief. Others have done the same with me, and I can understand if you begrudge me that.”
“Well, if there’s to be a new spirit of honesty between us,” Aya cut in, with a little more searing sarcasm than she meant, “tell me two things. Just two.”
The paladin nodded.
“One, why did you panic when I talked about my family?”
Her face twisted as she tried to process the question.
“The commander… he warned me that you had a family in Karkos. A wealthy one,” she said, “I don’t know how he would know, but… that’s what he said. He advised me that it would be wise, to avoid complicated the situation further. I agreed with him. What if your family tried to keep you here?”
Aya felt her annoyance give way to astonished fury.
“You- The commander-” she said, “you tried to keep me from my family?”
“I recognize that- It sounds worse than-”
“It sounds worse than it is?!” she said, her voice rising, “You lied to me, tried to stop me from asking? Why? To make it easier on you?!”
The paladin was clearly regretting her attempt to make peace. She raised her hands, trying to placate the anger girl, but there was no stopping Aya as she shot to her feet.
“What about me?” she cried, “did you even think about what I wanted?”
“And two!” she said, pointing an accusing finger at the paladin, “what’s the dirty secret you won’t even tell Niche about? The one about how you were sent to the far north with only a handful of soldiers.”
Lillian’s face went white with shock.
“How could you possibly-”
“You think we’re deaf? Do you think we’re stupid?” Aya practically screamed.
She could hear rustling inside the house, perhaps Sorore or Niche were rousing at the noise. She didn’t not care one whit about it.
Lillian’s face was cold, focused, steeling itself from the onslaught of words.
“What I do is to keep you safe,” she said, pulling herself straight, “it is my duty, and my honor.”
“Safe from what? Doubt?!” Aya said.
Anger. Anger was a catalyst. Anger was Emotion. She wanted Lillian to go away, to leave her alone to find her family. Something crackled in the air, something snaked around her shoulders, whispering in her ear. Aya was beyond using just words.
“My lady,” said Lillian, looking at the scars of pale light opening on her hands and forearms.
Before the power that was building up could be released, in what form Aya couldn’t guess, the door was thrust open. Distracted, the pair looked to the newcomers, and found a tall man in brass armour studded with pearls and seashells.
“Lady Aya?” he said, looking directly at her.
“Who are you?” she said, her rage momentarily forgotten.
“I am captain Hilario Dominata,” he said, with a small bow, “of the legion of sea and salt. I have come to retrieve and escort you to the Eisen estate, on orders of your grandmother matriarch Aysatra.” [←Chapter 61] [Cover Art] [My Links] [Index] [Discord] [Subreddit] [Chapter 63→]
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to redditserials [link] [comments]
2023.06.08 01:32 littlebitofmellc New lone star disc: Bravo Texas Ranger 173g, Lima Guadalupe 153g, Alpha Curl 174g, D2 Walker 173g, Alpha Mad Cat 175g, V1 Copperhead 175g, Alpha Warbird 172g, Delta 2 Lone Wolf 175g. $23 each shipped.
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2023.06.08 00:13 bravo_delta_bot Game 63: St. Louis Cardinals (25-37) @ Texas Rangers (40-20) [Wednesday, June 7, 2023; 7:05 PM CT]
|Linescore ||1 ||2 ||3 ||4 ||5 ||6 ||7 ||8 ||9 ||R ||H ||E ||LOB |
|Cardinals ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||1 ||0 ||1 ||4 ||0 ||1 |
|Rangers ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||0 ||4 ||0 ||9 |
- Brendan Donovan (L) 2B -- .242/.338/.363
- Paul Goldschmidt (R) 1B -- .286/.385/.491
- Nolan Gorman (L) DH -- .264/.348/.534
- Nolan Arenado (R) 3B -- .268/.316/.455
- Willson Contreras (R) C -- .210/.295/.367
- Alec Burleson (L) LF -- .226/.278/.390 --- Oscar Mercado (R) LF -- .310/.333/.414
- Paul DeJong (R) SS -- .236/.322/.465
- Jordan Walker (R) RF -- .258/.317/.387
- Tommy Edman (S) CF -- .251/.312/.426
- SP: Jack Flaherty (R) - 6.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 5 BB, 8 SO, 4.15 ERA (105 P, 56 S)
- RP: Jordan Hicks (R) - 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO, 3.91 ERA (16 P, 11 S)
- RP: Giovanny Gallegos (R) - 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO, 3.70 ERA (9 P, 6 S)
- RP: Ryan Helsley (R) - 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 SO, 3.24 ERA (11 P, 9 S)
- Marcus Semien (R) 2B -- .299/.367/.496
- Corey Seager (L) SS -- .336/.393/.588
- Nathaniel Lowe (L) 1B -- .279/.355/.443
- Josh Jung (R) 3B -- .293/.343/.511
- Jonah Heim (S) DH-C -- .286/.337/.464
- Travis Jankowski (L) CF -- .291/.371/.395
- Robbie Grossman (S) RF -- .237/.315/.376
- Josh H. Smith (L) LF -- .211/.359/.347 --- Adolis Garcia (R) PH -- .272/.329/.513
- Sandy Leon (S) C -- .154/.195/.205 --- Leody Taveras (S) PH -- .295/.348/.434 --- Jon Gray (R) P -- .000/.000/.000 --- Mitch Garver (R) PH -- .306/.390/.611
- SP: Jon Gray (R) - 9.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 12 SO, 2.32 ERA (100 P, 76 S)
: BA/OBP/SLG Links Scoring Plays
- Top 8: Alec Burleson homers (5) on a fly ball to left center field. Jon Gray pitching. Cardinals lead 1-0
FINAL: 1-0 Cardinals Decisions
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2023.06.07 22:33 Ok_Banana6658 [For Sale] Maxwell, Bob James, Nina Simone, Patrice Rushen, David Axelrod, Bob James, Kool & the Gang, Deep Purple, Ghetto Brothers
Hey folks, selling a few records, all prices include shipping, ships from Texas. Grade: (record/ sleeve).
Maxwell- Urban Hang Suite. Vg+//vg+ This is the first pressing of the album. Both LPs are pristine. Theres a promo cut bottom left of jacket. Laminated inner sleeves are in great shape. Kept both discs in antistatic sleeves. Fantastic album with a great punchy sound. $75
Patrice Rushen- Straight From the Heart. VG+/VG. Record in excellent condition, sleeve has small sticker top left corner with inventory number- cover could easily be rated VG+. Great funk boogie record.https://www.discogs.com/release/7189146-Patrice-Rushen-Straight-From-The-Heart
Nina Simone- Baltimore. VG/G+. There are some noticeable scratches that cause light crackle in certain areas, nothing obtrusive or overpowering, no skipping at all. Vinyl is still glossy and sounds amazing. There is a split on the bottom of gatefold jacket, my reasoning for G+ rating of jacket, however it would be VG+ otherwise, sharp corners no tears or stains. Minimal wear to spine. Great copy for a hard to come by record!https://www.discogs.com/release/16464297-Nina-Simone-Baltimore
Craig T. Cooper Project- Love Dues. VG+/ NM. Rare record in excellent shape. Has a non feelable scuff from the plastic inner it was in 20+ years ago that does not affect playback. Jacket in shrink. $60
David Axelrod- Songs of Innocence. NM/NM. RSD Release. Record in excellent condition, comes with detailed booklet, jacket in shrink.https://www.discogs.com/release/11889255-David-Axelrod-Song-Of-Innocence
Kool and the Gang- Wild and Peaceful. VG+/G+. Record in excellent shape, jacket looks great but has about a 5" seam split at top otherwise it would've received a much higher grade. Classic funk record in fantastic shape. $17
Ghetto Brothers- Power Fuerza. NM/NM. everland reissue that the website said was mastered from the tapes. Their validity behind that statement is a bit vague especially considering how rare an original is however the pressing sounds amazing. Hard to find in the states as it was an international release. In shrink, comes in thick Stoughton jacket. $36.
Final Solution- Brotherman OST. NM/VG+. Practically brand new record only reason cover is not graded NM is because it's out of the shrink. Play tested. $36
Willie Hutch- The Mark of the Beast. VG+/G+. Record plays excellent. Sleeve has small tears toward the top of front cover. Amazing funk record in fantastic shape. $16.
Bob James- Two VG+/VG+. Both record and jacket in excellent condition. $16.
Bob James- Hands Down- VG+/VG+. $4 Take both Bob for $20
Fela Kuti- VIP. NM/NM. In shrink, played test was its only spin. $16
Deep Purple- Deep Purple. VG+/VG+ Cover is in excellent shape with very minimal wear along edges. Yellow hype sticker on front cover. Vinyl record is pristine. $16.
Thanks a bunch! Ask for pics if you need more details, I want 100% satisfaction. If youre interested in funk shoot me a message may have what you're looking for.
submitted by Ok_Banana6658
to VinylCollectors [link] [comments]
2023.06.07 22:11 Repyorg2 Critique appreciated: Tiny Clown vs Goth girl - 3k
Something stirred in the trashcan.
It was night. Deep night.
The trashcan swayed to and fro.
This was not the first time the can had moved that night. A few hours ago, when the grounds were covered by the darkness of the end of twilight rather than the darkness of the deep night, a young woman wearing a black t-shirt and black pants had walked out of her house to deposit a tied garbage bag into the can. She was around 25 years old and was unnaturally pale due to the use of makeup. Her hair was black, and she had bangs. An annoyed frown was on her face, as if stepping outside into suburbia was a disgusting experience. After depositing the trash in the trashcan, she had turned and walked back into the house – not noticing the way the can had given a little shake the moment she'd turned her back.
Now, under a starry sky, the can swayed to and fro.
“HIIA!!!” came a shout from within, and the trashcan toppled to the ground. Its contents – garbage bags, compost, and a little clown – spilled all over the place.
The little clown stood on its feet. It was small, only a few inches tall from top to bottom. This little clown was bald and covered in white face paint – or was that his skin color? He had tiny ear holes where his ears would go and big floppy shoes that were at least as big as the rest of his body. On his back was a backpack. He had been eating garbage, but at that moment, his nose had come off.
“EEK!” the clown shouted, pointing at his red nose, which was bouncing merely towards the house. He ran after it, but the was faster, and it bounced through a little cat door and left its owner stumbling in the dark. Yet the clown did not see it vanish into the cat door, as the grass between him and the nose was tall as a forest of trees from his perspective. All he could do was follow the red paint marks on the ground from where his nose had bounced.
The little clown sat there on the sidewalk, rubbing his rump. He then sprung to his feet (shoes making a little squishy sound as this happened) and began walking away from the spilled trash. He soon found himself walking in the green grass of the house's yard. The grass almost came up to his head. He strolled through the grass, his feet making little squishy sounds with every step he took. He eventually found himself feeling very uncomfortable in the tall grass. Anything could come and ambush him here. So instead, he turned around and walked back to the sidewalk. For several long, agonizing moments, he panicked, wondering if he was even going the right direction to get back on the sidewalk or whether he was going deeper and deeper into the grass. Because of the thickness of the grass (to him) he couldn't see very far ahead of him; he would hardly know if he was going in the right direction if not for the red paint left behind by his obstinate nose.
Whew! Close one, that.
Now he was back on the sidewalk, facing the gigantic garbage mountain and tipped over trashcan. He gazed in trepidation at the gigantic pile of trash. He would have to walk around it.
This didn't take too long, just a few moments. Traveling was easier when one could see where they were going! The tiny clown soon found himself on the other side of the pile of trash – and found himself facing a gigantic creature.
Raccoon. This he knew from the markings and the general size of the creature. Raccoons were dangerous.
“EYYEYAAA!!!” The clown gave a little shriek and dived into the trash. The raccoon snarled and jumped in after him.
Rather than emerging from the other side, the clown climbed the mountain of trash, and, when he had reached the top – used his giant shoes to jump off the trash pile onto the other side where he'd encountered the raccoon. Then he ran as fast as he could on the sidewalk, putting as much distance as possible between him and the raccoon. He didn't stop running until he had found himself face to face with the giant door leading into the human house. At the bottom of the door was a flap twice as tall as the clown. The clown pushed against the flap, and it swung open! His mind still on the raccoon, he stepped through, allowing the flap to close behind him.
Now the clown stood inside a dark room. To him, it was like a castle, a castle of darkness. Luckily, his clown eyes saw better in the dark than they did in the light. Red paint marks veered off to the left, but the clown was curious and decided he would explore this place before trying to find his nose.
Moving across the floor, the clown took off his backpack and took a grappling hook out. Swinging it like an expert, he threw it towards the counter way above him. Clink!
Like a pro, the little clown climbed up the rope and hoisted himself onto the counter. He lay there, panting a bit. He righted himself and made his way across the counter. There was a bright white light attached to the wall – a nightlight for the humans to see. Putting his arms up to block the intense light, he crossed this area and soon found himself perched at the edge of a fruit bowl. The fruit bowl was close to a window that overlooked the backyard. Suffice to say he had a nice little feast for himself taking a bite out of everything – though finishing nothing. By the end, he was burping in contentment, his burps coming out of him in little green clouds shaped like hippos that danced in the air as they floated to other parts of the house. Two of these green clouds floated up to its each other, and, standing on their hind legs, began to waltz happily through the air. Bathed in starlight coming in from the window by the fruit bowl, the clown watched them with a big smile stretching from ear to ear. Slowly, the smile vanished, and tears started to flow from his eyes. He looked away, unwilling to watch anymore.
Instead, he gazed out the window, into the backyard, where he could gaze up at the starry sky and in the distance could see the neon sign which read Clown Park. His home. The place hidden in the human world, which they could not see – not yet. Humans did not know that his kind existed, and if they did, who knows how they would react? He had to return to his home. It would take so long to walk the distance. But he needed his nose...
Setting his face into a hard line, the clown forced himself onto his feet and wobbled over (eating so much had visibly made him almost round like a ball) to the grappling hook still attached to the counter. He unattached it and stuffed it back into his backpack. Then, his shoes still making their squishy sounds, he walked back past the nightlight and further on in the direction he hadn't been yet. He searched for his nose, following the paint.
He used his grappling hook to go from counter to counter, and he searched every square inch. He knew it was here somewhere. He eventually left the kitchen and made his way down a hallway, his squishy shoes making him wince as he walked down it. He took a right into a room where almost everything was the color of cream, and which was smaller than the kitchen. The bathroom. This place he searched as well, but found no balloon, nor anything else of his save for one of the burp hippos sitting at the edge of the toilet and using it, apparently. He left the bathroom and made his way at last into the room he feared most: the bedroom. This room was the darkest of all. No nightlight. Windows, yes, but they were covered by black curtains. Of course, it was not the darkness of the room that bother him, but rather the giant who occupied the gigantic bed. She was the human who owned this house. She was a scary one, even among the humans, often listening to terrifying music that spoke words of suffering and spiders. It was her music that had caused him to topple from his balloon as he was surveying the human town. He had run and hid and had been lurking around the yard and house ever since then. He had landed on his nose, which had triggered the nose into an angry fit, and now the nose had run away. He needed it to return. This was the only room he had never checked. Now the object of his terror lay before him, on her side, sleeping. Her pajamas, black like every other piece of clothing she wore. It was a buttoned pajama shirt with a pocket in the front over her chest. And his nose was situated on the tip of her shoulder.
Trying not to scream in alarm, the clown wagged his finger at his nose and pointed to his face pleadingly. His nose blew angrily at him, sounding like a raspberry. Then, to his horror, it bounced into the woman's front pj pocket, vanishing from view. He glanced at a nightstand in the far end of the room and noticed a baseball bat leaning against it. How strange. The tiny clown did not know much about humans, but he did know about baseball, and something told him this woman wasn't a baseball player. Plus, why did it have spikes sticking out of it?
The clown hoped with hope against hope with all the hope in his little clown body that his noce would see reason and bounce out of the human's pocket before she woke. But nothing happened.
Dread filled his little heart.
No, that couldn't be true. It was too terrible to be true. Deep down, he knew it was useless to keep pretending that he wouldn't have to put himself in the human's pocket and risk waking her. Humans didn't believe in tiny clowns, they were so arrogant they thought they were the only sapient race. What would this human do if she found proof against her worldview inside her pj pocket?
The little clown tossed his grappling hook across the air. It fell to the ground. Arms shaking in fear, he wheeled it back in and and tossed it again, this time leaning at the very edge of the nightstand with the tips of his toes. Click!
He climbed the line towards the bed, like a trapeze walker. Eventually he came to the edge of the bed and navigated through it.
His feet sank into the mattress. He hated it. It felt like quicksand. This was the least of his worries. When at last he was level with the sleeping giant, he carefully, carefully began to climb up her body holding tightly to the fabric of her buttoned pajama shirt to climb. At last, he was level with the pocket. He reached inside...and leaned so far he fell inside.
“OOF!” he called out as he hit his head on the key.
The giant must have felt this somehow. She tossed in her sleep, and the clown was sent flying – bouncing to and fro inside her pj shirt pocket.
Things went worse from there. The waltzing hippo burps had slowly waltzed their way into the room and waltzed themselves right into the woman's nostrils, even as his nose resisted his grasp and blew pink snot into a piece of cloth in the human's pocket, her hanky.
The woman twitched in discomfort in her sleep. The clown was sent flying again, and this time his squishy shoes pressed against her chest. He reached out and pressed the nose into his face, forcing it back on. He reached out and grabbed onto something – the hanky, the only thing inside the pocket that was actually meant to be there.
The woman, already starting to wake, rolled over onto her side – landing on the sharp grappling hook at the edge of her mattress.
“Oomph!” she grunted and woke. Desperate, the clown tried to crawl out of the pocket, but the woman was already sitting up. If he did this, he would be caught.
“Huh?” the woman said, feeling the grappling hook with her fingers. She squinted down at it. Her eyes not yet fully adjusted to the dark, she flipped on the switch to turn the lantern by her bed on. "What the hell are you?" she asked. Then, squinting down it again and looking at her ribs, her eyes widened in alarm as she realized it had cut into her pj's and had made a little bloody cut in her skin.
Glancing in all directions, she reached into her pocket for her hanky to pull it out... and ended up holding the tiny clown instead.
Her eyes widened in alarm as she stared at the clown and he stared back at her. “Am I dreaming?” She cocked her head to the side. She squinted at the clown, and the clown thought to himself it was a kind of angry, disgusted squint. “What the hell is this?” she asked, and her voice had a mean edge to it.
She screamed in pain as the clowns sharp fangs were sunk into her finger. The clown used the woman's wrist as a springboard to bounce off – directed perfectly so he flew towards her nightstand with the key outstretched.
The woman clutched her smashed finger to her chest, cursing and screaming in pain and anger – just as the tiny clown unlocked the container and took his deflated balloon out. He snatched the grappling hook and put it in his backpack and jumped off the nightstand.
“LITTLE FUCK!!!” the woman shouted in rage, running towards the clown with her non-bleeding hand outstretched. Seeming to think better of this plan, she reached out grabbed the baseball bat that had been leaning against the wall.
“I'M GOING TO KILL YOU!! YOU DON'T MESS WITH A GOTHIC BITCH, ESPECIALLY NOT IN HER OWN HOUSE! I'M GOING TO KILL YOU!”
So that was what that baseball bat had been for.
The tiny clown ran across the hallway as fast as his little legs could carry him. With every squishy little step, he inhaled into the balloon.
The Goth girl smashed the baseball bat hard into the ground, missing the poor guy by literally less than half an inch. She had swung it just a LITTLE too far ahead of him.
Unfortunately, he was going so fast that he smacked right into it.
Literal stars flew around as his head as he toppled over onto his back. Immediately, he played dead, sticking his tongue out of his open mouth and closing his eyes. The woman was bending down to look at him, he knew this through squinting out of his eyes. In his left hand was the string of the balloon – a balloon which was slowly coming to life with all the air he'd blown into it...
“Are you the demon that came for me because I played with Ouija board?” muttered the Goth. She made as if to reach down and pick him up, but, thinking of her injured hand, hoisted the bat above her head. One more hit just to be sure...
“HIIA!!!” the tiny clown shouted, and the balloon went flying into the air with him attached. He bounced off the nose of the woman (“BOOP!” cried the clown) and flew towards the cat door.
The Goth gave chase. She collided with a bunch of dancing hippos. She doubled over, gagging, her eyes an expression of shock at what she was seeing. A clown's gag is a powerful smell for humans, not easily described.
The clown soared through the cat door, flew over the trash pile (which was now crawling with at least three raccoons and flew upwards towards the sky.
In the distance, Clown Park awaited. Hundreds, no thousands of other clowns ready to hear his adventure. He could already see the gigantic face in the sky which was the entrance to Clown Park, gigantic, with a red nose and a jester's hat.
It winked at him as he approached.
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2023.06.07 21:06 evissamassive The Roku Channel Adds 17 New Channels to the Live TV Guide
Head to The Roku Channel to stream local news from major cities including New York, Philadelphia, Houston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Raleigh-Durham, Fresno, San Francisco, and more. No matter where you are, we’ve got you covered:
- ABC 7 New York: New York’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Covering NYC, New Jersey, Long Island and all of the greater New York City area.
- ABC 7 Los Angeles: Los Angeles breaking news and live streaming video. Covering LA, Orange County and Southern California.
- ABC 7 Chicago: Chicago breaking news, weather and live video. Covering local politics, health, traffic and sports for Chicago, the suburbs and northwest Indiana.
- ABC 6 Philadelphia: Action News is Philadelphia’s source for breaking news, weather and video, covering Philadelphia, Pa., NJ, and Delaware.
- ABC 13 Houston: ABC13 is your source for breaking news and weather from Houston, Harris County and Texas. Watch live streaming video, and stay updated on Houston news.
- ABC 7 San Francisco: The Bay Area’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Covering San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose and all of the greater Bay Area.
- ABC 11 Raleigh-Durham: Raleigh-Durham’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Covering Raleigh, Durham, Fayetteville and NC.
- ABC 30 Fresno: Fresno’s source for breaking news, weather and live video. Covering the North Valley, South Valley, Sierra and the greater Fresno area.
- ABC Localish: A national network built around extraordinary people, places, and passions across America.
Whether you’re gearing up for an action-filled adventure with Power Rangers and Transformers, strutting your stuff with Drag Race Universe, or hitching a ride with MotorTrend FAST TV for the best automotive programming out there, The Roku Channel has something for your every streaming mood.
- Azteca Internacional: TV Azteca’s flagship FAST channel, with coverage from throughout Latin America and the rest of the world. Offering the best in entertainment, news, series, and more
- Celebrity Name Game: Celebrity Name Game pairs celebrities with contestants as they improvise clues to identify as many correct answers as possible in a given time period. Hosted by Craig Ferguson.
- Corazón: Emotions converge at our stories. Corazón is the telenovelas channel that connects thousands of hearts. The signal that conveys the love, drama, and feelings.
- Drag Race Universe: Hail the world’s fiercest Queens, who strut their stuff on the way to drag superstardom.
- HerSphere by Lionsgate: Love. Laughter. Unexpected friendships. Inspiring women from all generations and all walks of life. Find them right here.
- MotorTrend FAST TV: MotorTrend FAST TV is your 24/7 home for non-stop car shows including: Roadkill, Texas Metal, and more. Enjoy the ride!
- Power Rangers: Whenever evil threatens Earth, the Power Rangers are called on to be the heroes the world needs. It’s Morphin Time!
- Transformers: Welcome to the world of Transformers, a world where everything is more than meets the eye.
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2023.06.07 20:50 TheZaxman Baratheon Boys - We do a little fishing (Open)
The Brothers Baratheon
Ryon rose early, dressing simply in some of his oldest clothes, a pair of brown breeches and a roughspun tunic. Fishing was not something a man dressed up for, unless he wanted to ruin his clothes that is, that or he wasn’t fishing right to begin with. Gathering up his thing he found a young lad from the kitchens giving him a silver coin to run a message to the Bird’s Nest, a famous tavern not far into the city.
Once the boy had run off Ryon stopped by the cook to see what was cooking, filling a trencher with bacon and taking a hardboiled egg he slipped right back out. The kitchen staff was used to the presence of the son of the Hand by now, eighteen years the boy had been darting about the place. Only now as he filled into his form he could no longer slip under their legs when they tried to catch him, but his days of running and youth were about over.
After quickly breaking his fast the young stag slipped toward a gate, hoping he rose early enough his father's men might not spot him from the tower. Though all of his hope left him as he felt a hand take the collar of his shirt.
“And where might you be going this early?” his brother playful pulled him back with a grin and a raised eyebrow, the answer fairly obvious with his fishing gear. “Two poles?”
“Heh yeah! Uhhh, I was hoping I would run into you brother!” Ryon attempted to bail himself out, but his brother's grin never faded. Dropping his shoulders at last he would not quite give in to defeat. “Stop looking at me like that, fine I wasn’t looking for you, I was gonna go by myself.”
“With two poles?” his brother laughed, “You know Father wants you to take a guard when you leave the keep.”
Ryon made a face at that, exactly what he had been hoping to avoid, fathers men told them everything. If he had any company they would hear in short work, then the father would never let him leave his room unattended again.
“I am not a kid anymore I can handle myself, I have been a knight for years.” Ryon pouted at his brother.
“A knight carrying no sword, dressed like a flea bottom boy? Brother, sometimes you make me want to ring your head like a bell.” Quentyn shook his head and looked over his brother again. “Okay, I’ll cover for you.”
“You will?!” Ryon almost shouted but caught himself remembering the time, not that the castle wasn’t alive and bustling but to avoid drawing eyes. Many a man in the keep reported everything back to his father, if not his own agents from the men of the Master of Laws.
“Only if I can come with you,” Quentyn said not waiting for an answer. “I’ll get my own pole, meet me by the River Gate.”
Accepting defeat at last, his brother was not a man to incur the wrath of, usually quiet when mad his brother was the storm itself. Ryon shifted his things and began to head down the high hill toward the gates below. Passing by stall after stall peddling their wares as he headed for the fisherman’s harbor. Outside the River Gate, the Baratheon leaned awaiting his brother, watching the vessels head out for their daily run.
“Let’s go,” Quentyn said appearing at last, bound in leather armor with a mace swinging from his hip. If his brother was to be unguarded he would serve well enough in his own mind.
Walking along the bank of the Blackwater the pair of stags caught up on times past, the brothers having spent a few years apart now. Ryon had to admit he had missed and would miss his brother still when he departed, it was nice to get a moment like this. While his brother marched to war he would be withheld here in King’s Landing ever the spare. Not a long walk, yet not a short one they came to Ryon’s spot eventually.
A giant Oak tree sat over a deep swell in the water, a field at their back, and a deep pool of still water in a bend on the river. Off in the distance a few families held picnics, pavilions, and tents sprouting up along the tree line. Everyone awaiting the tourney just biding the time until they all marched back home. Casting their poles the stags sat by their watering hole, Quentyn kicked up his feet and places his hands behind his head, resting against the great oak. Ryon would keep his focus on the water, occasionally glancing down the bank to see if his guest would show.
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2023.06.07 20:30 Dracomies Budget items that have been great Quality of Life Items (Less than 20- 50 dollars)
These are items I think are extremely budget but are super useful or great for quality of life items. All of these are generally less than $20-$50 Travelambo Leather Squeeze Coin Purse
You can find this for $5 on Amazon. Very sleek looking. Super useful when traveling to countries where you are dumped with change. Noopel Emergency Whistles -
This is just a whistle. But it's very sleek looking as far as whistles go. I like it in silver. $8. Very small and compact. O-Cedar sponges,
a 6 pack can be found for about $7. Imo some of the best sponges out there. Very much worth the cost. I think it won a bunch of kitchen awards. CICIMELON Pencil Case
can be found for $8. They look fine in black. But a great price. Sawyer Squeeze.
About $29. Arguably better than Life Straw. But definitely worth the cost. Smelly Proof bags
. Tacky name. But they work fantastic if you need to hide the smell of anything. You can use them in the fridge for smelly food, use them for take-out food in your car. Smells like nothing was there. I think its intended use is for hiding the smell of ambition-killing plants and it works for that too. They're almost as good as Lopsak Opsak bags at a fraction of the cost. Earthpak Waterproof Drybag
at $20 are a fantastic deal imo. They're a waterproof compression sack. I like to put waterless car wash bottles in them and a few rags so I can clean my car anywhere in an emergency. I also put anything that's soup or liquidy in them too. Stanley Adventure Camp Cook Set
- Clunky and ugly but a fan favorite. I personally returned mine because I found it just a bit clunky and ugly. But at $14 with a lifetime warranty, could be super valuable for a camper. Popular with campers. You might like it. UCO 9-Hour White Candles
at $8. Could be a life-saver. Olight flashlights
are fantastic and often very inexpensive. Almost always worth the cost. Civivi pocket knives
are very much bang for your buck in terms of ease of use, materials, aesthetics and portability. Good value for the dollar.
The Knipex Cobra XS
at $29 might be viewed as expensive but it's so useful that it is worth every dollar.
The Herschel Chapter Toiletry Kit 3 Liters
at $28 is a fantastic 'dopp kit'. It's not called a dopp kit. But it is that. It's just as good as much more popular dopp kits at a fraction of the price. Slice 10515 Mini Box Cutter
, I bought this 5 times. At $9.99 I definitely recommend it. It's basically a box cutter but the tip is safe, yet sharp. Hard to explain. You have to watch the video to understand. It's genius. Viperade VE1
. Good price for an EDC organizer at $19. SMALLRIG Super Camera Clamp Mount
, I bought 4 of these. These are about $14 right now. Incredibly valuable for cameras and microphones or just anything. It's super useful. HOTO Precision screwdrivers
at $29. Very sleek looking. And easy to bring along in an EDC kit or V/EDC kit. Seki Edge Nail Clippers
. The hype is real. These are fantastic nail clippers at $17. Often mentioned in BuyItForLife RESQME The Original Keychain Car Escape Tool,
at $9. There's no excuse for NOT buying this. It could save your life. TERRO T300B Liquid Ant Killer,
at $13, these work amazing at wiping out ants. Zebra Sarasa Pens
. Very inexpensive. But they write so well. One of the best bang for your buck Japanese pens. I like them in 0.4 or 0.5 OXO Good Grips Dish Brush,
just a dish brush. But I'm amazed at how good it is. $7.99 Maximm Extension Cord White Flat Multi Plug, 1 Ft - 360°
. Found for $13. These have been so handy for travel. The head rotates 360 degrees which allows you to put it in slots you normally wouldn't be able to in various areas. Zojirushi Stainless Steel Mug, Black, 16 Ounce
(matte black) - I freaking love this thermos. The way you press the button and how the lid flaps open makes it super useful. Usually about $20 to $30, very much worth it. RockDove Men's Original Two-Tone Memory Foam Slipper
, these are about $18. Super useful when you just are lazy and need to wear slippers to throw out the trash or pick up mail. Chums wallets
- Super cheap. $11. But many different colors and styles. An excellent travel wallet. Super minimalist. Good quality. Hero Clip
$17. Putting a disclaimer that I didn't find it useful. But you might. It's a carabiner you basically put on your backpack so it doesn't touch the shit on the floor when you're in a bathroom. Honest to god that's its apparent main use according to onebag
Onebaggers go gaga over this shit. You might like it. But an ever-reminder that hype does not mean something is useful for you. Vitafusion gummies
. Cheap. They give you a lot. Tastes good. Boogie Board
at $16. It's an LCD tablet. You write on it. You press a button and it clears. Very useful for saving paper. No computer needed. MTrack Solo
at $50. Probably the cheapest interface that doesn't suck. (Audio gear) The XM8500
at $20. A $20 microphone that performs at the level of $100 XLR microphones, ie the Shure Sm58. (Audio gear, an interface required) Invisible Glass
at $9. It's a glass cleaner. An amazing one. Furinno Turn N Tube 5 Tier
. $24. It's hard to explain. But it's so useful. It's basically like a 5 level shelf. But it's so useful to have. Good for books. Good for random pictures. Good for work stations. KitchenAid All Purpose Shears
, 49,000 people who like it. I like it too. It's only $8.99 Bissell Natural Sweep,
$39. I still use this to this very day to just sweep up random shit in my carpet. It's not for deep cleans, more just a quick maintenance fix. KitchenIQ 50009,
knife sharpener. Yeah, there's knife snobs who say you shouldn't use these. But for the average Joe these are great. $10. Amazon Basics Hanging Organizer File Folders
. A bunch of file folders you put in your file cabinet. But very good amount for the price. Price keeps changing but it's worth it. PVC placemats.
They're cheap. But seriously don't bother with cloth placemats for your dinner table anymore. These are heat proof and if you want to clean them, just run the sink for 10 seconds and it's clean. Usually $9. Greenies.
You can get them for about $6 for a pack of 11. Makes dogs so happy!
A Lodge Cast iron pan
at $20 Carrd
. It's a website maker. It's free. But the paid version is $9 a year. Not per month. For the entire year. Kirkland microfiber towels
(Yellow) are maybe about $14 for a stack of 26. Very good value for the dollar. Koss headphones
. ie KPH 30i, Koss Porta Pro, Koss KCS75. These headphones are very good for the money. Often about $30 or so. OLFA Household Scissors L-Shaped 112B
at $14.99. These are fantastic scissors. Learned these from a lot of tools people. They cut through zip ties and plastic. Definitely a Quality of Life item
I think that covers all the cheap ones.
If you have any you'd like to add, please comment below. I love buying and testing all of these things! :P
submitted by Dracomies
to QualityofLifeItems [link] [comments]
2023.06.07 19:57 Robbinghope MVP, Discmania, Discraft, and More! 2 for $16, $24, or $30
All prices Shipped, Open to offers, Venmo or Paypal All $10 discs are 2 for $16 All $14 discs are 2 for $24 All $17 discs are 2 for $30
$17 170g Green Proton Photon 9/10 Sold $14 168g Yellow Neutron Zenith 9/10 $14 168g Green Neutron Motion 9/10 $14 168g Green Neutron Motion 9/10
$17 170g Green Proton Tesla 9/10 $17 170g Green Proton Tesla 9/10 $17 170g Yellow Proton Tesla 9/10 Sold Sold
$17 174g Green Neutron Terra 9/10 Special Edition Sold $14 174g Yellow Neutron Volt 9/10 $14 174g Yellow Neutron Volt 9/10
$25 172g Blue Neutron Rhythm 9/10 Ice Bowl Double Stamp Sold Sold Sold
$17 172g Green Proton Deflector 9/10 $17 176g Green Proton Deflector 9/10 $14 176g Pink Proton Matrix 8/10 Circuit Challenge 2016 Inked $20 178g Blue Plasma Pyro 9/10 Ice Bowl Sold
$17 174g Blue Plasma Entropy 9/10 Ice Bowl $17 173g Brown Plasma Entropy 9/10 Ice Bowl $17 176g Yellow Neutron Entropy 8/10 Custom Inked $17 178g Yellow Neutron Entropy 9/10
$10 174g Pink Cosmic Electron Atom 9/10 $20 171g Blue Fission Envy 9/10 Sold $17 166g Purple Soft Neutron Envy 9/10
$20 173g Glow Eclipse Proxy 9/10 Ice Bowl $17 174g Orange Electron Proxy 9/10 Ice Bowl Sold $14 172g Brown Plasma Nomad 9/10 Ice Bowl Sold
Sold $20 169g Green ESP Hades 9/10 $14 174g Red Z Vulture 9/10 $10 176g Blue Z Sting 9/10
Sold $14 176g Yellow ESP Meteor 9/10 $14 176g Orange ESP Meteor 9/10 Sold
$45 174g Green Z Zone OS 9/10 Beef Money $45 174g Black Z Zone OS 9/10 Money $45 174g Black Z Zone OS 9/10 Beef
$14 174g Purple Rubber Blend Fierce 9/10 PP $10 174g Green Big Z Roach 9/10 $10 174g Purple Stone Steady 7/10
$17 177g Pink Buzzz 9/10 $17 176g Purple Buzzz 9/10 $17 177g Blue Buzzz 9/10 $17 174g Blue Z Buzzz SS 9/10
$22 174g Blue ESP Passion 9/10 $20 174g Blue Sidewinder 9/10 $20 174g Blue Sol 9/10 $20 172g Blue ESP Sol 9/10
$20 171g Blue Champion Wraith 9/10 Strange Duck Brewing $50 174g Blue Color Glow Firebird 9/10 23 April Fool's NS $25 174g Blue Champion Firebird 9/10 Fly You Fools
Sold Sold $14 172g Yellow Champion Roc3 9/10
$14 175g Blue Halo Nexus Aviar Driver 9/10 Sold $10 173g Purple Star Invader 8/10 Inked $10 175g Pink DT Omega 9/10 Ice Bowl
Sold $14 g Yellow Fuzion Raider 8/10 $17 173g Glow Moonshine Trespass 9/10 Champions Cup $14 167g Blue Opto Musket 9/10
Sold Sold Sold Sold
$30 174g Green Special Blend S Line Cloud Breaker 9/10 DM X Out $30 g Grey Special Blend S Line Cloud Breaker 9/10 Sold $25 175g Pink Lux Vapor Enigma 9/10 DM X Out
$40 175g Green Lux Vapor Tilt 9/10 DM X Out $14 170g Yellow Neo Instinct 9/10 Sold Sold
$20 177g Blue C-Line MD3 9/10 DM X Out $40 173g Red Metal Flake C-Line Mind Bender 9/10 DM X Out $25 177g Blue Neo Mutant 9/10 DM X Out
$14 173g Grey Exo Hard Tactic 9/10 DM X Out $14 175g Red Geo Link 9/10 DM X Out Sold Sold
Sold $20 172g Purple K1 Grym 9/10 Ice Bowl $17 177g Black K1 Svea 8/10 $14 g White K1 Gote 9/10 Clover
$20 175g Purple K1 Soft Berg 9/10 Sold Sold Sold
$17 174g Yellow Alpha Nimitz 9/10 Champions Cup $17 173g Pink Alpha Mockingbird 9/10 Champions Cup $17 176g Blue Alpha Texas Ranger 9/10 Champions Cup $20 170g blue Founders Walker 9/10 Freddy Meza $14 174g Red Alpha Armadillo 8/10 Inked
$17 169g Grey Apex Alpha 9/10 Ice Bowl $17 168g Blue Apex Alpha 9/10 Ice Bowl $17 173g Pink Sublime Alpha 9/10 Ice Bowl $20 171g Blue Sublime Grackle 9/10 I love Mondays $10 172g Orange Royal Bullet 9/10 Ice Bowl $10 175g Blue Royal Bullet 9/10 Ice Bowl
$14 174g Pink 400 Reverb 9/10 $14 172g Blue 500 D2 Pro 9/10 Champions Cup $10 178g Green Ace M Model S 7/10 Discover Prodigy FA $17 174g Pink 500 A5 9/10 Champions Cup $20 171g red Aura Votum 9/10 DFX LTD Sold
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2023.06.07 19:08 TheRealClive Hitter Chapter Three: Tiffany and The Ax - Writer Martin Blank
“There were rules, Mafia codes you had to go by. But the code is ridiculous. It's a code among sociopaths.” David Chase (creator: The Sopranos) Chapter Three: Tiffany and The Ax
- ANTIBES, FRANCE. Jude sat at a small table outside La Forge Restaurant on Jacques Audiberti Place. The petite square was bustling with late morning activity. He sipped an espresso and paged through his USA Today. A group of teenagers passed loudly through the square on their way to the beach from a hostel. Tiffany and her girlfriend were with the group. He had been watching her for about a week now but the right opportunity hadn't presented itself.
He told himself he wasn't delaying the operation because he was on an unlimited expense account and his target was spending the summer on the Cote d'Azur. He supposed milking a client that way would be unethical. The thought amused him. It really was
because he hadn't found the perfect chance to kill her. Mostly. Mostly that was it.
He noted that the Tour de France was passing through the area and decided to find a place to watch the event. And then there was the Musee Picasso on Place Mariejol. He didn't want to miss that.
He could kill Tiffany tomorrow. Or the next day.
Finally it was the weather that forced his hand. A fierce summer storm was predicted for that week. Such an event would make Tiffany's movements unpredictable. She might stay in and weather it, as he would then have to do as well or she might catch the train to a fairer climate. He had no doubt he could find her again, but uncertainties made him uncomfortable. The night before the storm rolled in, he got his perfect opportunity.
It was late, past midnight. Jude had been watching Tiffany as she snuck away with a young man, an Australian, Jude guessed. They had been drinking on the beach, the Plage Gravette, having snuck on after it closed. The location couldn't have been more perfect if Karsen picked it himself. It was surrounded by walls on three sides and faced the ocean. It wasn't lit other than the light kicking off the surrounding apartment buildings. And with the cloud cover from the oncoming storm, it was all but impossible for anyone in the overlooking apartment buildings to see any activity on the beach that night.
Tiffany's male companion passed out after sex. Tiffany lay there, quite drunk herself. Finally she got up and staggered towards the road. Jude watched from the shadows as she came right towards him. She passed one bum, fast asleep by the wall and entered into the tunnel leading from the beach. She never saw Karsen.
She cried out for a split second. But Jude covered her mouth with gloved hands and snapped her neck. He carried her body off the beach, out the gate to the Quai Henri Rambaud and onto a waiting boat.
While Jude piloted the motorboat out into the ocean, into the face of the storm, his partner prepared the body. When they reached far enough out, they dumped the pretty, blonde teenager over the side. And started a media firestorm.
Tiffany Teague was an ordinary American girl. She was from the state of New York. Wynantskill, specifically. A hamlet outside of Albany. She was a junior in college, attending Cedar Crest College in Allentown, PA, an all women's school. She liked Justin Timberlake and Fallout Boy and thought that Paul Walker was the perfect man.
Edward and Maggie Teague weren't rich, or even well off after several failed business ventures, but they doted on their kids and helped Tiffany save for a summer of backpacking in Europe. They were proud of the fact that while most of Tiffany's friends were sitting around getting drunk and pregnant, Tiffany would be learning about the world. They probably wouldn't have been pleased with how she spent her last hours alive.
When she vanished, they began a tireless campaign. Like all parents faced with an unsolvable mystery of this type, they played nightmare scenarios over and over in their heads. Was it worse that she was dead? Or was it worse that she was alive, perhaps living in some horrible situation? Which to hope for? How to pray?
The case caught the attention of Nancy Grace and Greta Van Susteren. The resulting media pressure caused France, the United States and Australia (the home of the poor drunken boy last known to be with her) to redouble their efforts on Tiffany's behalf.
But there was no trace to be found. No clue as to her disappearance. The Australian boy, somewhat of a loathsome cad, found himself now reviled as a murderer. For the life of him, he could barely remember their last hours together. He didn't even remember having slept with her on the beach. A fact attested to by the drunk who watched it, but his testimony was highly questionable.
No one would ever have tied it to a case in Federal Court from almost two years before. The prosecution of a small time thug named Paulie Azeglio. In 2002 Paulie was convicted under U.S.C. § 2315 Sale or receipt of stolen goods, securities or monies. He was sentenced to three years, but died in prison in 2003. His death was retribution in an ongoing organized crime power struggle involving his infamous father, Frank “The Ax” Azeglio. Edward Teague was a juror in the trial that convicted Paulie.
NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK. Two and half months before Tiffany's death, Jude was in the living room of his home in Sherman Oaks. He had his laptop hooked up to his 70 inch big screen television and he was sitting on the couch watching porn when his cell phone rang with an unknown number. Normally he wouldn't have answered it, but the area code was from New York. And he got a prickly feeling at the back of his neck. So he managed to get his hands clean in time to answer the call before it kicked over to voice mail.
The speaker was abrupt. A limousine would be arriving at his home in forty-five minutes. It would take him to the airport. He would fly to New York, JFK International and be picked up from there for a meeting. After the meeting he would be taken to a hotel before being flown back to L.A. the following afternoon. The option to refuse this was not offered. And Jude, recognizing the voice, knowing the caller by reputation, never once thought of turning it down. He got up, showered and packed an over-night bag. The limo was right on time.
When he arrived in New York, it was almost 4 AM. Another limo was waiting for him and the ride from the airport took forty-five minutes. Jude slept for most of it as it was past one in the morning, California time. He woke from the sound of the limo coming to a stop. The driver opened the door and Jude stepped out, stretching as he did so.
He was in a warehouse complex. Dull orange lights hung from the corners of buildings in halos of mist. The ocean was nearby, though he couldn't see it. He could smell the salt in the air and hear the not-so-distant sound of compressed surf crunching against a wharf. This was an old complex. Rust rotted through the walls of the buildings. Some were missing whole panels.
The limo drove away, leaving him alone. For a moment, there was a tightness in his chest. Anxiety. He didn’t have a gun. He wasn’t armed but that was unavoidable. He pushed it away. Calculated the odds. It was unlikely they brought him this far just to kill him. Unlikely, but not impossible. He pushed the thought away again. You never knew for sure when dealing with the Mafia. Before anxiety consumed him, a door opened. Twenty feet away, a large man wearing a suit stepped out of the darkness and motioned him to come forward. Karsen did not feel better.
The man searched Karsen, patting him down. Karsen didn't object. When the man was satisfied, he waved Jude through the doorway. Neither of them spoke.
Karsen moved cautiously into the old warehouse. It was a huge empty place. Dim light filtered in from broken windows high above. Deep shadows hung like curtains through cavernous space. Karsen lit a cigarette and walked, kept walking towards the center of the warehouse. Finally, seeing no objective and hearing the door crash closed behind him, he stopped. In a dim pool of light drizzling in from a broken window high above.
Footsteps echoed out of the shadows. Coming towards him. Gradually a man emerged from the gloom. He stopped a few feet from Jude. The man was in his late fifties or early sixties. Obviously Italian. His hair was steel grey and his manner was one that assumed authority.
Jude stared at Frank “The Ax” Azeglio. He took a drag on his cigarette and exhaled softly. Frank spoke.
“Put out your cigarette. My sinuses...”
“Oh. Sorry.” Jude dropped the smoke and crushed it with his shoe.
“Thank you. And thank you for coming.”
“I have a job for you, Mr. Karsen.” With gloved hands, Frank the Ax passed a manila envelope to Karsen.
“Family member?” asked Jude.
“One of the bosses?”
“Is this a quiz show? Open the fucking envelope.” Azeglio pulled out a bottle of nasal spray and took a squirt up each nostril.
Karsen skimmed the information and looked at the photo. A photo of Tiffany Teague. He glanced back up at Azeglio, curiosity on his face.
“This is a teenage girl.”
Frank stared at him. Silent. Jude shot him a small, knowing smile.
“Sure. I'll do it. Any special requests?”
“Make it quick and painless. Make the body disappear.”
Jude nodded and slid the papers back into the envelope. Something was weird about this. There was a reason Frank called him in the middle of the night, flew him across the country. There was a reason they were meeting in this warehouse instead of some back room of a restaurant. Something about this contract was different.
“A mil,” said Jude. “Plus expenses.”
The Ax didn't hesitate or negotiate. “I'll have it wired to your account. Bill me the expenses through our usual contact.”
“You got a deal.” Karsen handed the envelope back to Frank.
“Don't you need this information?”
“I have what I need memorized. I don’t want to carry that file past the TSA.” Karsen turned and walked towards the door. He hadn't gone more than a couple feet before Frank spoke again.
Jude stopped and turned to the mob boss.
“I want you to know why.”
Jude shifted uncomfortably. He was itching to go and he felt the nascent urge to urinate. But it was more than that. Somehow he felt that the longer he stayed, the more...culpable
he was. It was an irrational, random thought, but it nagged him. It put an urgency on him.
“That's not necessary. I prefer not to know. To know as little as possible.”
“But I want
you to know.”
Jude stood there quietly. He desperately wanted a smoke. Frank “The Ax” began to speak.
“My son Paul. Francis Paul Azeglio Jr, you know I wanted a better life for him. Wanted him to go to college, maybe join the military. I didn't want this life for him. This life that you and I lead. I wanted better for my children. Wasn't that the point of fighting my way out of the gutters and back alleys of Brooklyn? And I did it. I gave my children everything. Paul was raised in luxury. He got an excellent education at a private school. He had all the opportunities of privilege at his fingertips. Opportunities I bled and made others bleed to win for him.
“All I wanted was for him to be a doctor or a stockbroker or even a musician. To have a family and give me grandchildren. I wanted my son to escape this life that I was forced into by simple economics and...certain skills I had that others lacked. You understand me, Mr. Karsen?”
“I don't have children,” Jude regretted it the moment it came out his mouth. Frank's expression clouded and his brow furrowed.
“But I get your point,” Karsen added quickly.
“Every father worth a damn wants to protect his children. Of course, to my son, it seemed like I thought he wasn't up to it, like I thought he wasn't tough enough for the job....” Frank trailed off, staring up at the shattered windows with their rusted frames. “Which, of course, was the absolute truth.”
They were silent. Jude's need to piss was growing stronger. But there was no way to leave this conversation. Not until Frank the Ax was done. Was this a confession wondered Jude? Karsen suspected Frank was probably a Catholic. How did he suddenly become this man's priest?
Frank finally broke the silence. “Did your father respect you?”
Ahh jeez, thought Jude, “I broke his jaw when I was sixteen. After that it didn't matter.”
“Bullshit. It always matters. I never even knew my father and I still wonder what he would've thought of me, to this very day. But you took respect from your dad the day you cracked his face.”
“I don't know. I didn't see him much after that.”
“Right...right,” Frank sighed. “Paul wanted my respect. He wanted to impress me, not just as a son or even as a man, he wanted my respect as a gangster. He coulda done anything and I woulda been proud of him. But he wanted to be good, be great at what I
was great at. You understand?”
“I think so.”
“This kid...this right side of the tracks, white kid who never had to fight in his life, decided he was smart enough to do a major job, like it was some movie or one of these cable TV shows. He stole a container full of flatscreen TVs and tried to fence. He wanted to bring down a big score, just like the stories he'd heard his old man tell the boys, when he shoulda been in bed at night...”
“He got caught.”
“Of course he got caught. Grand Theft Auto was a video game
to him. To me, it was a way of life
.” Frank muttered something under his breath that Jude didn't make out.
“Nothing. Because Paul went across state lines it was a Federal Crime. Ahh, that shouldn't have mattered. I got the best lawyers, greased the skids with the Judge and the prosecutor. They offered a decent deal, but not enough. I didn't want my boy to do a day inside. So it went to trial. Still shouldn't have been a problem. I hired one of those fancy jury consultant companies and wired the jury...but one slipped by. One man named Edward Teague. Real Dudley do-right. From my man inside, he tells me this Edward Teague bullied this jury, harassed this jury, and wore them out by dragging it on for days so they finally gave in and convicted. They didn't want to convict. But this guy...this guy...he was the foreman and he all but forced them...”
Something didn't ring true about this story, but Jude wasn't about to question a man nicked-named 'The Ax'.
“So my sweetheart baby boy, my only son...went to the Federal Pen. God, the way he acted, like it was a badge of honor, like I should be proud of him. I told him-”
Frank stopped, his voice catching as the memory overcame him. He composed himself and wiped a tear, passing it off as rubbing the bridge of his nose.
“I told him. Keep your head down. Do your time quietly and he'd be taken care of. Mob guys can be very safe inside. But he... he still had something to prove...”
Another tear slid silently down the mafia don's cheeks. Jude wanted desperately to leave. But he felt he had to say something
at this point.
“I got the guys that did him. I got them already.” Frank wiped the tears from his face and his manner changed. As he spoke, a slow rage filled his voice. “Now. Now I want Edward Teague. Juror number nine. I want him to suffer like I do. To live without his precious child, his daughter that he dotes on, that he loves. I want to rip her out of his arms.” His voice seethed with hatred.
“I want him to hurt...you understand me? I want him to have this hole in his heart
. This ache, this, this horrible
torn into his soul.”
Frank stepped closer to Jude, until he was so near Jude could smell the faint medicinal scent of nasal spray on the man's breath. He was so uncomfortable that he wanted to burst out laughing, but knew that would mean his instant death. Not figuratively. Frank, in this moment, would kill him for disrespect. It was the thought of his own face being bludgeoned that drove the amusement away.
Brutality filled Azeglio's voice, “I want to take his daughter from him and I want him to live the rest of his life never knowing what happened to her.
The cold hatred that burned out of the man was awful in its intensity. His eyes cut into Jude's with the horror of emptiness. Without another word, Frank turned and walked back into the darkness.
submitted by TheRealClive
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2023.06.07 18:25 SabbyOfSableWine A human-averse alien visits his sister to check up on her after an attack--and her human mate answers the door
This is part of my little series about the adventures of Vr'ocria and Human Aldrick. If you'd like to read previous parts, they're linked below, along with brief summaries in case you prefer to just jump right into the new part: Part One: Alien learns what "sleep" is and how humans prefer to do it in a comfy bed with blankets and pillows. And they find it utterly adorable. Vr'ocria and Human Aldrick are sent on a survey mission together. Things go south, Aldrick makes sure they're safe, and then Vr'ocria learns what human sleep is and how vulnerable humans are when they sleep. Vr'ocria's people don't sleep, but enter stasis, a form of rest in which they typically stand, and they are still slightly aware of their surroundings. Vr'ocria finds human sleep utterly adorable, and also decides she will protect Aldrick while he sleeps. And she also develops a massive crush on him. (Her scales turning purple is her version of blushing) Part Two: An alien + human adventure with such shenanigans as poison drinking, befriending dangerous wildlife, and fighting a space pirate. Oh, and they have a huge crush on each other. Part Three: When a cold-blooded alien has to cuddle a warm-blooded human for warmth Part Four: A human leaves a hickey on his alien lover. Her nestmate doesn't understand what a hickey is, and thinks the human injured her Vr'ocria and Human Aldrick end up assigned to be partners. Vr'ocria is a witness to both human shenanigans as well as human durability, but she also begins to learn about the limits of the human body--they are not invincible. She and Aldrick begin to fall in love, and they finally confess their feelings for one another when Vr'ocria admits to accidentally forming a mate bond with him. Vr'ocria's nestmate, Galek, is not very happy about her being involved with a human, but begrudgingly respects her decision. Part Five: Space pirates make the grave mistake of attacking a human's loved one. They very quickly learn what happens when a human is angry and full of adrenaline Part Six: An alien who doesn't sleep learns what dreams are–or more specifically, she learns about nightmares when her human mate wakes up screaming Pirates come for Vr'ocria in revenge for her killing one of their own, and Aldrick goes beast mode. They escape with their lives, but also with questions about how the pirates were able to find them–and they begin to suspect there's a mole in the ship. While Aldrick is recovering from his injuries, Vr'ocria learns what dreams are when she witnesses him having a terrible nightmare. Part Seven: Alien is stunned to learn that humans recreationally drink alcohol, specifically to experience the effects of being poisoned. Her human offers to get drunk. Purely for scientific observation, of course Aldrick is still on doctor's orders to rest, but he's bored, and Vr'ocria finds out he drinks sometimes. She's shocked but fascinated, and he gets drunk so she can see what it's like. Turns out, he's a very mushy, lovey drunk. Onto the story!
"Planets, I'm so stupid," Vr'ocria groaned. She straightened and put her hands on her hips, casting her eyes around the room. She was in her quarters looking for her scanner, and Aldrick was across the room helping her.
"You're not stupid." He stood up from where he'd been searching under the couch. "We've had an insane couple of weeks, it's understandable that you misplaced it."
She rubbed her eyes. "I know, it's just so tedious having to request a new one. Too much paperwork, and I'll have to fix all the settings, and ugh."
"It's around here somewhere," he said as he started pulling up the couch cushions. "We'll find it."
The design of Vr'ocria's quarters was almost the exact same as Aldrick's: plain white walls, gray carpeting, neutral furnishings, and a wall of windows to break up the blandness of the space. However, she had a stasis chamber in the corner, rather than a bedroom, and while Aldrick had decorated his place, hers was still rather sparse. She'd only been assigned to live on the ship fairly recently, and she'd had little time to settle into her new home before she was being sent on frequent away missions.
All as well, though. She'd basically been living with Aldrick ever since they mated, and by now she mostly used her assigned quarters as a storage room. Somehow, she didn't even miss using the stasis chamber anymore. The chamber was meant to be a warm, dark, and quiet place for her to enter stasis at night, but Aldrick's bedroom was an easy replacement.
"No scanner," Aldrick reported as he put the couch back together.
Vr'ocria cursed. "I don't have a clue what could've happened to it."
"And you already checked the safe next to your stasis chamber?"
"Yeah. I mean, I guess I could double check just in case…"
The door chimed.
"Do you mind getting that?" Vr'ocria asked as she pulled open the safe.
"Sure." Her back was turned, but she heard Aldrick's footsteps as he went to the door and opened it. She continued rummaging through her things. "You."
Vr'ocria barely had time to register the familiar voice before there was a smack, a grunt of pain and a thud,
all in rapid succession. She whirled around to see Aldrick lying on the floor–and her nestmate, Galek, standing in the door with his fist in the air, scales bright yellow and standing on end. "Galek!"
She yelled, running to Aldrick. Thankfully, he seemed more dazed than he was hurt, and was already climbing back to his feet. There was a red welt forming below his left eye.
Vr'ocria put herself between them, staring daggers at Galek. "What were you thinking?" She demanded shrilly.
He looked surprised, and somewhat relieved to see her. "Are you okay?" He asked, lowering his hand.
"I'm fine," she snarled as she grabbed the front of his shirt and yanked him inside before they started making a scene in the corridor. "You blasted gl'ach.
" Their mother tongue took over and her old childhood insult for him slipped out.
Aldrick had backed up until he was several feet away, standing awkwardly like he wasn't quite sure what to do with himself. He kept a wary eye on Galek, but otherwise made no move to speak or lash out.
Once they were all inside, Vr'ocria slammed the touchpad to close the door. Galek was staring back at Aldrick, flexing his hands at his sides. She moved so that she was in between them again, blocking Galek's line of sight. Like him, her scales were yellow and standing on end. "Why did you do that?"
"I came as soon as I got your message," he explained, looking at her like she
was the crazy one. "Last I heard you'd been attacked by pirates, then I come to your quarters to check on you and he
answers the door."
"He's my mate!" She was trying not to shout, but failing. "You know this!"
Slowly, Galek's scales faded to green and lowered back down, although he kept flexing his hands.
Vr'ocria's communicator chimed. She ignored it.
"Apologize!" She ordered, one fist planted on her hip and the other pointing to Aldrick. Her communicator chimed again.
Galek slowly turned to Aldrick. He pursed his lips. "I am…sorry," he ground out. Bling,
the communicator sang for the third time.
Vr'ocria snatched it out of her pocket and raised it to her ear. "What?" She snapped. "Vr'ocria!,"
The voice on the other end squeaked. "I need your help–I messed up the map maker and I'm trying to fix it but Lieutenant Prax is on his way and he's going to
kill me and I'm freaking out–"
"Lekot, I'm sorry, but this isn't a good time–" "Please!"
Lekot begged, "it'll only take five minutes, I just need you to walk me through how to recalibrate the system! I'll owe you one, I promise!"
Vr'ocria chewed her lip as she watched Aldrick and Galek continue to stare at each other.
"Ugh, fine," she sighed. "You two behave,"
she pointed at them with a glare. "I need to step out for two seconds. I better not come back to carnage."
They nodded stiffly, and Vr'ocria reluctantly stepped out into the hallway. "Alright Lekot, the first thing you need to do is open the settings…"
Aldrick's cheek pounded. It'd be a miracle if he didn't get a black eye from this.
Galek wasn't the signature yellow of an angry Ethyrian anymore, but his eyes were still boring holes into Aldrick.
Aldrick was the first to finally speak. "Not exactly how I wanted our first meeting to go." He trailed to the couch and sat down, gently touching the hot red welt just under his eye. "I'm sorry for startling you at the door."
Galek's lips were still pursed. He ground his jaw as if he was chewing over Aldrick's attempt at a peace offering, and Aldrick prayed he wasn't about to get tackled.
His stomach clenched when Galek began approaching, and he braced for a fight.
Galek stiffly sank down onto the cushion at the opposite end of the couch.
Aldrick blinked. Okay, maybe I'm not dying today.
He could see the familial similarities. Both Vr'ocria and Galek were the same shade of emerald green, and they had the same sharp noses and strong cheekbones. Even the tightness around his eyes looked the same as Vr'ocria when she was stressed.
"I…" Galek cleared his throat, refusing to make eye contact. "I do truly apologize," he finally managed. "I was only concerned for Vr'ocria's safety."
The corner of Aldrick's mouth curved upwards. "I know."
Galek finally turned to meet his gaze. "You understand that humans have a certain…reputation,
Aldrick closed his eyes and nodded. "I do."
"So you understand why I have reservations about you mating her."
It wasn't a question. Aldrick nodded again. "Yes."
They sat in silence for a moment.
"Vr'ocria tells me you saved her life when those pirates attacked."
Aldrick blushed and rubbed the back of his neck. "Yeah, I guess I did." He shrugged. "I love her. I'd do anything to keep her from getting hurt."
Aldrick gave him a sideways glance.
Galek tapped his fingers on his thigh. "And that includes…" he cleared his throat again. "Not harming her mate."
Aldrick gave a rueful smile. "Does that mean you won't punch me again?"
Galek flushed purple.
Aldrick couldn't help chuckling. He leaned forward to rest his forearms on his knees. "Have you ever heard of the concept of a 'brother-in-law'?"
Galek shook his head.
"'Brothers' are what humans call male nestmates; 'sisters' are female," he began. "When humans marry–that's sort of our version of mating–we believe that their family becomes your family. They're called in-laws. Mother-in-law, father-in-law, sister-in-law, and on and on. Anyway, what I'm getting at is that if we were on Earth, I would call you my brother-in-law." He met Galek's eye. "I know asking us to be brothers is probably too much…but I'd at least like for us to be friends."
Galek's eyes widened slightly. His fingers fidgeted the hem of his sleeve, his gaze never leaving Aldrick, who waited with bated breath. Did I overstep?
Galek rose to his feet and moved to stand in front of him. Aldrick stood as well so that they were eye-to-eye.
Galek stuck his hand out.
"I would…" Galek ground his jaw again. "I would be open to becoming your…friend."
Slowly, a smile bloomed across Aldrick's face. He took Galek's hand and shook it. The Ethyrian's gaze softened by a fraction, and Aldrick dared to hope that one day they might actually become good friends.
The front door opened and Vr'ocria entered, communicator in hand. "Crisis averted, and Lekot even found my scanner in the break room–" she came to a halt as she laid eyes on them. "Uh…everything okay?"
The two of them released the handshake, turning to face her. "Everything's good," Aldrick grinned. Galek didn't quite smile, but he shoved his hands in his pockets and was visibly more relaxed than he was a few minutes ago.
"...Good." She looked as though she wasn't sure how to react. "So, no fighting, right?" She gave her brother a pointed look.
An amused expression crossed Galek's face. "Only with you, fr'iya."
That made Vr'ocria chuckle. "I'm bigger now, I can beat you." She walked over and collapsed into the center of the couch. Aldrick and Galek sat back down on either side of her.
"You'll never win," Galek said, poking her side.
She smacked his hand. "I have practice wrestling Aldrick," she teased.
Galek's eyes widened, and her scales flashed deep purple. "Not like that! I mean, we've done that,
but–oh moons, forget I said anything."
Aldrick flushed beet red, covering his face with his hands. "I gotta go," he choked out, jumping up. "I'm just gonna–you guys catch up, I'm gonna go–" he bounded towards the door.
"Love you!" Vr'ocria called behind him, laughing. Another more lighthearted chapter! I want to do a mix of heavier themes with gentler ones. I'm a SLUT for angst, but my children deserve happiness too. I figured it was finally time for Aldrick to officially meet Galek. I took some care with this chapter because protective siblings are great, but I hate the protective fathebrother trope when it comes from a place of misogyny and a sense of ownership over the daughtesister, rather than genuine concern for her physical and emotional well-being. I've seen that a lot in media and it's fucking gross. Oh, and Vr'ocria will eventually meet Aldrick's family as well, don't worry :) THANK YOU for reading! Until next time!
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2023.06.07 17:58 Positively6thStreet Last week I resuscitated my first patient. I wish I hadn't.
One of the first things my EMS cert teacher told me was that the touchiness would pass. That one day I’d be slipping IV needles into arms as easily as I feather floss between my teeth.
Yet I was two weeks into my first full-time ambulance gig and I was still shaking between calls. The three story inferno raging downtown didn’t help, but that’s not where me and my partner Tom were heading.
Prior to this whole clusterfuck our night was quiet. Mostly dealing with confused dementia patients and burgeoning (harmless) schizophrenics. The MO is either to find their medicine, or transport them to the hospital. Most of our calls were like this, low stakes, right in my comfort zone.
But now we were dispatched to a priority two emergency, the kind of call that necessitates the whole lights and sirens deal. Someone called in a possible self-harm situation involving their neighbor. Serious shit, but I had Tom with me. He was a veteran EMT and former cop so I was always in steady hands.
The issue was that that downtown inferno had fucked traffic two solid miles in front and behind us. We hadn’t moved more than ten yards in five minutes, and even though it was protocol to have a police response as well we were still closest by far. We were the front line at that point.
Another minute passed in gridlock before Tom finally blurted it out. “You’ve gotta go alone.” And there really was no other way. Abandoning the ambulance and blocking further firetrucks wasn’t an option. Solo responses were rare, sure, but necessary in desperate circumstances like this.
I knew it was coming, but goddamn was that the last thing I wanted to hear.
Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to want to. Deep in my heart I would be willing to lay my life down for a patient. I wanted so badly to be that type of cool, methodical mind that entered an emergency situation and eased their patient back from the brink. It just hadn’t come to me yet.
Tom saw this. I’m sure if seconds weren’t the difference between life and death he would’ve given me a five minute pep talk. For now, all he could do was pat my shoulder and smirk. “Knock ‘em alive, kid.”
So out I went. Squeezing myself between the bumper to bumper traffic until I found myself on the correct cross street.
There’s something horrifying in the minutes between their call and your arrival. The feeling creeps in while you’re slipping over broken sidewalks and homeless tents. Realizing you’re the beginning and end of their recovery. It all comes down to you, the practitioner.
To be blunt…you’re God for those few minutes. And God was having a shit time gaining entry.
Someone buzzed me in, but of course apartment 13B was locked. Our response time was already woefully long so waiting for police to break it down was not an option. I went to town using my bump key, prying it open less with finesse and more raw frantic energy.
The door opened to near complete darkness. I saw candles around the corner at the end of the hall, but a whole lot of unknown was between me and there.
Light switches were oddly dead, so my flashlight had to guide my feet. From the little I could see it was a well lived-in apartment, at least two generations had sunk their essences into the carpet.
That’s when the smell hit.
It was familiar. The scent of a man? No. Not exactly. No. It was like my Grandfather’s musk. I hadn’t smelled it since I was in his lap as a kid, but the recall was instantaneous. It made me feel oddly safe. Which lasted only a few seconds considering what I would soon see.
Around the corner there were metric shitton of candles in the living room.
Every surface was covered with them. Weirdly, the wax was melting from every kind of receptacle EXCEPT a candle jar. Bowls, mugs, shot glasses. The source of the musk, no doubt. They cast the entire room in a homemade devilish glow.
They lit my way to the girl I would come to know as Ellie. She was wrapped up in herself in the corner, motionless. Baggy sweats and a white tee hid her frailty at a glance. I rushed to her, set her on her back, and began to triage.
First was the bruising on her neck. Fresh. Must’ve tried some sort of strangulation, but it wasn’t what did her in. So I quickly moved on.
Blood caked her white shirt. I followed it to her wrists. Messy little slashes, but didn’t go deep enough to do real harm. That’s when I noticed the culprit of my lightswitch woes. Sloppily wound duct-tape attaching a FORK to her hand.
Just a foot away from the charred out power outlet.
Jesus Christ she electrocuted herself. Full cardiac arrest. She could’ve died in the seconds it took me to triage.
My hands found position and began compressions irrespective of my panic. I regained some confidence as I found my rhythm, laying the foundation for the AED to work its magic.
The repetitiveness gave me my first moment to take Ellie in.
She was young, maybe even younger than my nineteen year-old sister. Her being in this position seemed so wrong. I could see this face getting drunk at a college party, waiting tables at a diner in town, but not here.
I thought about the second chance I wanted to give her as I continued compressions.
That’s when the room started to feel…warmer. The candle scent now got a bit clearer. It wasn’t the manly musk of my Grandfather, it was an animalistic scent. Dried blood and mange. Something that activated a long buried fight or flight instinct in my primitive genes.
I had to keep on with my compressions though. Even if I had lost track of time. I might’ve been a ways short of two minutes when I decided to cede CPR duties to my AED.
It wasn’t until I unzipped my bag that I realized this was my first time using an AED in the field. I had learned its ins and outs, tested it on course dummies, and seen others use it, but never had I actually been tasked to use it on my own in the field.
I pulled up her shirt and applied the wired pads, again feeling a warmth that sent a bead of sweat down my neck. Finally me, the naive idiot, decided to turn around.
The flames of the candle array now burned twice as bright. They licked high enough to start to uncover the shadows against the walls, revealing scraggly looking wallpaper. No time to admire the setting though.
I waited patiently as the AED robotically counted down and administered the first shock. It picks up heart rhythm automatically, but I still used my fingers to feel her absent pulse directly.
It remained still. No response. Desperate, I re-positioned my fingers as if checking pulses wasn’t the one thing I was supremely confident in.
My fingers wiped some blood from her wrist as I did. Only now did I notice her cuts weren’t at all random…they in fact cut out a symbol in her flesh.
A star? No. It was a pentagram.
But the affirmative BLOOP of the AED took my mind off that fast. It rejiggered her heartbeat, automatically suspending its shocks. Any weirdness I felt came secondary to my resumed chest compressions.
Resuscitation, especially with a faint heartbeat like this, always felt to me like pulling someone out of a quicksand pit. You’re shoulder deep clinging to a couple fingers. Hanging onto that little grip as you try to extract the entire person. If you’re good, that little grip is all you need.
I pumped with that metaphor in my mind’s eye. Laser-focused on my goal. For fifteen seconds I felt like that ideal practitioner I dreamt of being, reeling my patient back from the brink.
Until, I shit you not, the flames gained a life of their own.
At first I thought it was just the ones directly in front of me, but as I spun I realized it animated every live flame. Each one dancing its way towards the ceiling, causing their receptacles to bubble over with wax.
You spend a lifetime watching flames move randomly, flicking with the wind, and I promise you their sudden conscious movements will rattle you deep.
The full red light illuminated what I now realized wasn’t wallpaper…
It was blood-inked writing. Overlapping scrawls of mantras over every wall and even, impossibly, the ceiling. I imagined her crawling like a spider as she wrote Praise be/All Glory to the true One/May his new Kingdom reign. Then finally the one spanning the entire main wall.
May my body serve as his sacrificial lamb.
I suddenly felt like an interloper in a place I should not be, intruding on an ancient ritual. And whatever had its grip on her seemed to be in the room with me now.
The flames kept up their heights so I could take it all in, wax now spilling over onto the floor.
Looking back, I think it was offering me a chance to reconsider what I was doing.
It had its claim on her. But as her practitioner I felt I had an equal claim.
I resumed compressions.
Faster now, desperate to get her back as fast as possible. The flames swirled, seemingly enraged by this development and not letting me forget it.
Yet somehow I was able to separate my technique from my panic-ridden nerves, keeping a tight rhythm for almost a minute before the girl finally snapped upright. The flames dissipated in an instant down to tiny weak flickers.
Her eyes were shut at first, like she was still within a blissful dream. Then her eyes opened to what she seemed to clearly think was a nightmare.
“Where’d he go? Where is he?” She seemed taken by complete surprise, grounding herself back in reality as she pawed at herself. My practiced lines of patient comfort only enraged her.
“You have to let me get back!” With rabid panic she started to stab at her wrists but soon realized it wasn’t the most economical method of returning. I finally regained my composure just as I saw her eyes meet the burned outlet.
I screamed and grabbed at her leg but her hand stretched to reach it. It connected, but unfortunately it seemed she had blown it out completely the last time. No shock administered.
Ellie now kicked me off and stood, searching for a weapon, a way out. It gave me a second to try to reason with her person to person, that practiced bullshit now scared right out of me, but she responded with a level-headed reason that made it feel almost like…
…like she was speaking in my best interest.
“You don’t understand, I’m the last one, he needs me.” She raced across the room to her dresser, rifling through the top drawer. I went to pull her off when she struck me hard, across the face.
It wasn’t a punch to harm, as much as it was a utility swipe. Keeping me away as economically as possible. I was a few feet away when she pulled the knife from the drawer.
There wasn’t any fanfare, no waiting to see the horrified look on my face, she just sliced as fast as she possibly could. I don’t remember if it was two or three good hacks before Tom rushed in to tackle her.
In one swoop he was able to pin her while cleanly plucking the blade from her grip. Blood pooled as he steadied her flailing arms with ease, getting the one she had sliced into the open.
“You okay?” Once we had established that I was at least physically unharmed I got back to work wrapping her wrist, stopping the brunt of the blood flow. Tom reinstated order to my rapidly deteriorating nightmare.
As much as she wailed and cried in that first minute, she settled completely as she was padded up and restrained for transport. Her dead eyes followed me back and forth around the room as I spoke to the arriving police. Burning into my scalp even when I turned around.
She seemed to have come to a realization, something that set her at complete peace even here in the reality she had been forced back into. Stupid me, I reasoned that maybe I had given her a new lease on life that she would cherish.
That was a week ago now.
There were five total ritual suicides that night, aside from Ellie. All were successful. The first was a young artist who burned herself on a pyre, setting her warehouse studio space aflame. That was the inferno that caught Tom and I in the traffic heap.
My first patient died two days after.
He was a twelve year-old boy suffering from anaphylaxis after eating some mislabeled Chinese food. An epi-pen was administered by his Mom, but it wasn’t enough. We arrived on time and got the epinephrine IV in, however his heart responded in a bizarre fashion.
It began to rapidly slow with the increasing dose. He wasn’t just dying, it was like I was killing him. He died so fast it took his Mom two minutes to realize. The longest two minutes of my life.
One is a fluke but six are a pattern.
Five more of my patients would die, some with completely non life-threatening conditions. My supervisor comforted me after the first but things darkened quickly from there. Despite the fact that I was investigated and could not have done anything different, I was suspended indefinitely.
It took me almost a week to find Ellie.
From the hospital they bounced her between a few psych wards until landing her at one for, how shall we say, the more intense cases. Despite this their windows were not barred, just thick and secured tight with a latch. Something told me hers would be unlocked. It was.
She’s sleeping. Been this way for the last hour.
I’ve gripped and released the knife in my pocket a hundred times over.
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2023.06.07 17:56 uggsandstarbux Defending the Draft 2023: Minnesota Vikings
2022 was a dangerous year to be a Vikings fan, especially if you have a pre-existing heart condition. While a season of 13 wins -- tied for the most since 1998 -- may seem like the team is in a position to make a Superbowl push, the actual quality of the team is a lot more... well, mediocre.
The 2022 Vikings ranked 19th in offensive EPA per play, 25th in defensive EPA per play, 27th in Overall DVOA, and 15th in Pythagorean Wins (with 8.4 expected wins). Kevin O'Connell always preached the performance of the team in priority situations. The team finished 12th in 3rd down conversion rate and 8th in red zone conversion rate. And the team led the league -- by far -- in the number of 4th quarter comebacks and game winning drives. When it was time to put up or shut up, the team put up hard. Except for in the playoffs.
All of that made the future of the Vikings tough to read. But Kwesi Adofo-Mensah and the rest of the front office told us what they thought of the team with their free agency moves. In a league where teams are trading the farm for Hall of Fame QBs and giving $20M/Year deals to nose tackles and guards, the Vikings' big free agent splash were a one year deal on an injury-prone DE and a good-not-great corner that doesn't even crack the top 20 highest AAVs at the position. Concurrently, the team parted ways with half of the team's 2022 captains to try to get under the cap. All of this while the team is not done with transactions -- Dalvin Cook still presents as a cut candidate due to his age and contract structure. Notable Departures:
- WR Adam Thielen ($6.4 Saved / $13.5 Dead)
- LB Eric Kendricks ($9.5 Saved / $1.93 Dead)
- CB Patrick Peterson (Unrestricted Free Agent)
- DT Dalvin Tomlinson (Unrestricted Free Agent)
- EDGE Za'Darius Smith (Post-draft trade)
Other Notable Transactions:
- CB Byron Murphy (2Y / $17.5TOT / $8.1GTD)
- EDGE Marcus Davenport (1Y / $13TOT / $10GTD)
- TE Josh Oliver (3Y / $21TOT / $8.2GTD)
- DT Dean Lowry (2Y / $8.5TOT / $4.2GTD)
- Re-Signed C Garrett Bradbury (3Y / $15.75TOT / $5.15GTD)
- Re-Signed RB Alexander Mattison (2Y / $7TOT / $6.35GTD)
- Re-Signed FB CJ Ham (3Y / $5.6TOT / $3.3GTD)
- Re-Signed All-Pro LS Andrew DePaola (3Y / $4.025TOT / $1.515GTD)
The other major change that influenced how the team addresses the draft was the shift from Ed Donatell's Cover 2 shell defense to Brian Flores's aggressive man defense. Compared to the 2022 Vikings, Flores's 2021 Dolphins blitzed over twice as often and played with light boxes at roughly half the rate. On top of the front seven, one of the biggest changes in scheme is the Cover 2 alignment, which Donatell employed on nearly half of all defensive snaps compared to just 12% for Flores's 2021 Miami team. With one crop of rookies and free agents brought in to play in a Fangio style scheme, the defense would have to undergo a massive shift to succeed in a scheme that can only be described as the complete opposite of what was run in 2022. Cornerback
- Arguably the Vikings' biggest need, the team was without a true CB1. Byron Murphy comes aboard as the most experienced player. Pegged a slot-only player through his first three years, Murphy spent most of his time in 2022 outside and had a career year. After that, the team looked to rely on improvements from their 2022 draft class with Andrew Booth and Akayleb Evans, two players that combined for fewer than 300 defensive snaps last season primarily due to injury. You can see how KAM and crew, confident in their scouting ability, are betting on health to affect the secondary for the better. But taking another bet on a young player is a smart move at a position where depth is always a good thing. Interior Defensive Line
- The loss of Dalvin Tomlinson -- who played 551 snaps last year and compiled 14 pressures -- leaves issues next to Harrison Phillips. Jonathan Bullard was third on the IDL with 319 snaps last season and returns on a one year deal. Tonga and Lynch had some flashes, and the team brought in Lowry. The rotation (optimistically) can get to competent. But finding a true winner on the inside of the line was viewed by many as a priority. Wide Receiver
- The Vikings starting personnel at WR heading in to the draft was Justin Jefferson (stud), KJ Osborn (decent), and... Jalen Nailor? Brandon Powell? Oh dear Lord don't tell me it's Jalen Reagor. The loss of Adam Thielen was expected, but nevertheless leaves a gaping hole next to JJ and KJ in the lineup. Keenan McCardell is arguably the best WR coach in the league, and playing with Jefferson would give one-on-one opportunities for any receiver. But having somebody that can actually win those one-on-ones remains a question. Inside Linebacker
- Eric Kendricks's jersey change marks the true end of an era at LB. Kendricks struggled in Donatell's scheme last season, as did most players. But he was a longtime leader on the defense and a valued community member. Jordan Hicks, Brian Asamoah, and Troy Reeder sit atop the depth chart. Hicks can be solid and Asamoah had flashes, but counting on this group as every down players is a risk to say the least. Offensive Guard
- Ed Ingram was one of the worst starting guards in the league last season. But he's a rookie. Maybe he gets better in year 2. Maybe he stays terrible. Even if you're optimistic there, Ezra Cleveland is entering a contract year at left guard. Adding interior offensive line depth is always smart. Quarterback
- This offseason, reports surfaced that the team and QB Kirk Cousins could not finalize a contract extension. That means for the first time in his Vikings tenure, Cousins is entering a contract year. Cousins has been an above average QB during his time in Minnesota. Last year saw him finish 4th in yards, but he was painfully mediocre at efficiency stats like TD percent (17th), ANY/A (18th), and ADOT (20th). Entering his age-35 season, it would be wise to look for a successor even if the team plans on retaining Cousins past 2023.
*Indicates measure is taken from Pro Day 1.23 WR Jordan Addison, USC Profile: Jr 5'11 173lbs 31.5 Arm\
8.75 Hand 75.125 Wing* 4.49 40 1.57 10 34 VJ 10'2 BJ 4.19 SS* 7.05 3c 5.95 RAS* 2022 Stats: 11 Gm 59 Rec 875 Yds 8 TD 2 Drops Steve Smith Sr
: "Addison has one of the highest ceilings among WRs in this draft due to his blend of route running chops and his all around athleticism. He is a three level route runner: intermediate, deep, and short... The way he can get in and out of his breaks is so natural. He uses leverage. And he manipulates the DB consistently"
Addison -- a Biletnikoff Award winner during his Pitt days -- is one of the highest floor players in the class. He is a route running technician with proven dominance playing inside and outside. He had more than 3 yards per route run in two different offenses. He understands how to marry his athleticism and quickness with the breaks in his routes. He finds the DB's blind spot and forces them to lose. Addison is a bit on the small side, but not abnormally so given this draft class. He does have some concerns with his hands -- his drop rates as a freshman and sophomore were 14% and 10%, respectively -- but he showed improvement in this as a junior.
The need here is clear. As mentioned earlier, the WR depth past JJ and KJ is abysmal. Even with Thielen and Osborn on the roster in 2022, the Vikings needed juice in the WR room. The 2022 Vikings had one top 5 WR in yards per route run (Jefferson). There was no other receiver in the top 100. Teams were not worried about Thielen or Osborn. Teams could put two or three defenders on Jefferson without any fear of what anyone else might do to their defense. Hockenson fixed this a bit down the stretch, but an outside playmaker was still needed.
The real question here is why the team opted not to go for CB Joey Porter Jr, who filled what many considered to be the team's biggest need and was a higher ranked prospect for Lance Zierlein, PFF, Danny Kelly, Matt Miller, and Dane Brugler. The answer here -- if I can take a guess and stretch my logic a bit -- is that the need at WR2 was greater than the need at CB. Patrick Peterson was the biggest loss in the secondary, and the team brought in Byron Murphy to try to fill that role. On offense, Minnesota had not brought in a replacement for Adam Thielen. The depth chart past Jefferson and Osborn was filled with bodies that might not make a 53-man roster on a lot of teams. Trade: SF gives 3.87 to MIN for 3.102, 5.164, 7.222
| ||Jimmy Johnson ||Rich Hill ||Fitzgerald-Spielberger ||Harvard |
|Total give ||155 ||48 ||737 ||115 |
|Total get ||117.7 ||45 ||1334 ||197 |
|Absolute Diff ||-37.3 ||-3 ||+597 ||+82 |
|Percent Diff ||-24% ||-6% ||+81% ||+71% |
The biggest thing to consider when evaluating this trade is that the Vikings came into the draft with 5 picks, only two of which were in the top 100. In my biased opinion, this was a home run trade, even if the traditional charts disagree. To take three swings at the bat instead of one is a humble and wise strategy, especially for a team with limited draft capital. The move looks even better in hindsight because there were no CBs taken between 87 and 102. 3.102 CB Mekhi Blackmon, USC Profile: 6Sr 5'11" 178lbs 31" Arm 9.25" Hand 74.625" Wing 4.47 40 1.47 10 36 VJ 10'5" BJ 11 Bench 7.44 RAS 2022 Stats: 14 Gm 66 TKL 2 TFL 1 FF 15 PD 3 INT
Brett Kollman: "Feisty, physical press corner who definitely has to play more under control in the NFL to avoid flags, but he has all the competitiveness you want to see from a potential CB1 at the next level. Never backs down from anyone. Has easy gas to stay in control of a route from top down, even against true burners. Legit 4.4 speed and gets up to it quickly. Outstanding ball production... Held up extremely well despite being targeted often. Battle tested, aggressive, and confident... Very similar to Desmond Trufant."
An unrecruited high school positionless player out of high school that signed with JuCo San Mateo, Blackmon followed up four seasons at Colorado with a breakout 2022 campaign as one of the best defenders on the USC defense. The Trojans played a man-heavy scheme, which let Blackmon shine. He has great anticipation and instincts. His production this year says as much. He plays bigger than his size, and he has inside-outside versatility. He will have to clean up some of his physicality to avoid flags at the next level. He will also have to refine his technique to stay with the more complex routes he'll see. But he is a strong culture and scheme fit for what Brian Flores is bringing to the defense.
The need at CB was obvious even before hiring Flores. The Vikings ranked 31st in passing yards allowed, 26th in Passing DVOA, and 24th in EPA allowed per pass attempt. Bringing in Byron Murphy helps. So do the healthy returns of Booth and Evans. But Murphy has not yet shown that he can be a consistently great player (or at least not markedly better than what we got out of Patrick Peterson last year). And Booth and Evans are unproven. Blackmon -- taken with the last pick on Day 2 -- is not expected to come in and be Jalen Ramsey or Sauce Gardner. But in a shift to a more aggressive man-coverage defense with a thin CB room, Blackmon is an upside player that will have every chance to take a starting spot on a porous defense. Trade: MIN gives 4.119 to KC for 4.134, 2024 5th\
| ||Jimmy Johnson ||Rich Hill ||Fitzgerald-Spielberger ||Harvard |
|Total give ||56 ||24 ||578 ||88 |
|Total get ||58.4 ||24 ||898 ||133 |
|Absolute Diff ||+2.4 ||0 ||+320 ||+45 |
|Percent Diff ||+4% ||0% ||+36% ||+34% |
On top of entering the weekend with a mere 5 draft picks in the current year, the Vikings also entered with a mere 5 draft picks in the 2024 class (3rd rounder traded for Hockenson, 5th rounder traded for Reagor). Dropping 15 picks in a relatively flat part of the draft while adding a mid-Day 3 pick is good business given this team's lack of capital.
*Here we assume a future pick in round n
is valued at the middle pick of round n+1
, not accounting for compensatory picks. In this case, a 2024 5th is equated to pick 176. 4.134 S Jay Ward, LSU Profile: Sr 6'0.5" 188lbs 32.5" Arm 8.25" Hand 76.875" Wing 4.55 40 1.54 10 34.5 VJ 11' BJ 4.35 Shuttle\
7.31 3c 16 Bench 6.70 RAS* 2022 Stats: 13 Gm 60 TKL 2.5 TFL 5 PD 1 INT 2 FR TD
Nate Tice: "A ton of fun. I just like this fit because of Brian Flores's defense. Just picture all of those mixture guys that the Patriots have used over the years... Jay Ward can be that"
A three year starter with reps at safety, slot, and outside CB, Ward is one of the most versatile players in the class. He possesses excellent length and movement skills. His experience at CB make him a fluid player in coverage. In the run game, Ward's size is a concern. His 188lbs Combine weight puts him in just the second percentile for safeties. This translates to issues with taking on blocks. He is a very aggressive player, beelining to the ball as soon as it's out. But his size coupled with his impatient playstyle lead to a lot of missed tackles. He was also flagged seven times last season.
In his final season in Miami, Flores was extremely creative with how he employed his safeties. Jevon Holland had the 2nd most blitzes in the league at the position. The number 1 player? His teammate Brandon Jones. With the defense taking on Flores's amoeba identity, an aggressive player with experience at multiple positions has the potential to find a role early on. The defense will look to utilize him similar to how Jevon Holland was used as a rookie. And with Harrison Smith well into the twilight of his career, Ward is a timely pick as the team attempts to thread the needle in their competitive rebuild. Trade: MIN gives 5.158, 6.211 to IND for 5.141
| ||Jimmy Johnson ||Rich Hill ||Fitzgerald-Spielberger ||Harvard |
|Total give ||32.4 ||13 ||722 ||103 |
|Total get ||36 ||15 ||492 ||74 |
|Absolute Diff ||+4 ||+2 ||-230 ||-29 |
|Percent Diff ||+10% ||+13% ||-47% ||-39% |
It's a bit strange to see Adofo-Mensah move away from the analytics charts in favor of the traditional ones, but the value swap here is not absurd. The real question with this trade will be if Roy ends up being a true contributor. 5.141 NT Jaquelin Roy, LSU Profile: Jr 6'3" 305lbs 32.75" Arm 10.125" Hand 78.125" Wing 5.13 40\
1.82 10* 26" VJ* 8'5" BJ* 5.00 Shuttle 8.01 3c 30 Bench 3.72 RAS* 2022 Stats: 13 Gm 49 TKL 3.5 TFL 0.5 SCK
Lance Zierlein: " The more you watch, the more you like the way Roy plays the game... Despite limited starting experience at LSU, he already displays signs of a rush plan and the athletic talent to execute it. Roy is an ascending talent with the potential to become a quality starter. "
After a 30 tackle, 1.5 sack campaign as a rotational player in 2021, Roy shifted from a penetrating 3T position to more of a traditional nose tackle under new HC Brian Kelly. This transition let Roy shine as a run stuffer. He eats space and is incredibly tough to move from his spot. He averaged almost 52 snaps a game in 2022 and his motor never let up. He has some work to do if he wants to be a three down player, particularly as a pass rusher. His bend and balance in this front are especially lacking.
The Vikings' front office seems to be a lot more comfortable with the current IDL room than I am. Harrison Phillips is a plus starter. Past that, the roster is filled with unproven youth or proven subpar players. As a 5th round pick, Roy has an uphill battle to separate himself from that group. But he's a good lottery ticket at this price. His positional versatility ensures that the defense can simply put their best players on the field. 5.164 QB Jaren Hall, BYU Profile: RSr 6'0" 207lbs 39.75" Arm 9.5" Hand 71.875" Wing 4.63 40\
1.59 10* 4.19 Shuttle* 7.06 3c* 7.96 RAS* 2022 Stats: 12 Gm 248 Comp 376 Att 66% Comp 3171 Yds 31 TD 6 INT 86 Rush 789 Rush Yds 9 RUsh TD
Kwesi Adofo-Mensah: "We added a really talented player that has a ton of upside... The ability to make decisions, throw the football accuracy, deal with conflict when it comes his way, and sometimes try to make a play outside the framework of the playcall. He does all those things at a really great level... That's an outstanding young man. I'd like to see him lead my team or any organization I'm a part of."
Despite being the third oldest prospect in the QB class, Hall only has 24 starts under his belt due to two years on religious mission and one year with a hip injury. But when Hall took over for Zach Wilson in 2021, he hit the ground running. BYU went 10-3 in that first year with Hall compiling a 4:1 TD:INT ratio. He is a two time team captain, and all reports of his character are off the charts.
Hall is a poised pocket passer capable of extending plays and picking up yardage on the ground. He was only sacked 12 times in 2022, which is a testament to both BYU's offensive line and Hall's ability to create under pressure. There are conflicting opinions on Hall's upside and arm strength, with Lance Zierlein calling his arm "unimpressive" while Kyle Crabbs claiming that hall has a "live arm with the ability to throw with juice off platform". Where there was near-universal agreement was in his understanding of the scheme, as Hall operated BYU's RPO-heavy offense like a machine. He has a clean release and quickly gets into a rhythm. His largest universal concerns are his age (he turned 25 in March) and his injury history (missed 20 games in the last 4 years). He also has ball security issues with 13 fumbles over his career.
I expected the Vikings to draft a QB in this class. The only question was if it would have been via a trade up on Day 1 or a flyer on Day 3 (or a falling Will Levis). With his age, size, and injury history, there are plenty of questions about what Hall can be. He will have a year in practice to put together his audition tape to be Kirk Cousins's replacement -- it's certainly a viable path for this team to take a RiddeHowell/Mills-esque year to evaluate Hall while they continue retooling the defense. But the more likely path is that Hall becomes a long-term backup for the team. Cousins has been the model of health, but that doesn't mean that QB2 is an unimportant position. Sean Mannion, Kellen Mond, and Nick Mullens have manned that position to various degrees over the past few years. None has shown that they can be a competent plug-in player if needed. There is some hope that Hall -- who operated the BYU offense with a mechanic efficiency -- can be that player. 7.222 RB DeWayne McBride, UAB Profile: Jr 5'10" 209lbs 30.625" Arms 9.5" Hands 73.125" Wing 20 Bench\
* 2022 Stats: 11 Gm 233 Att 1713 Yds 19 TD 7.4 Y/A 2 Rec 10 Rec Yds
Dane Brugler: "Overall, McBride is unproven as a pass catcher and blocker, which might restrict his NFL role, but his contact balance, vision and lateral agility are among the best this running back draft class has to offer"
In an era of advanced metrics and Combine showmanship, perhaps the trait that has gone underappreciated more than any other in RB scouting is balance. McBride may have the best balance in the entire RB class outside of Bijan Robinson. He comes from a heavy outside zone scheme at UAB, where he led the FBS in yards per game and set school records for single-game and single-season rushing. McBride absorbs contact like a sponge. His short area burst is strong, and he makes defenders miss with power and finesse. McBride has ideal size and toughness. His concerns are simple. He was not utilized as a receiver in college, and he had more career fumbles than catches in that time. McBride profiles as a two-down player at the next level. Although Adofo-Mensah has voiced his belief that McBride's passing game usage was a product of scheme rather than ability, McBride still has to prove that he is more than just a short yardage runner in the NFL.
After spending a pick in back to back years on RB and re-signing Mattison to a modest contract, RB was a bit of an unexpected pick for this regime. Dalvin Cook still seems to be movable (a likely cut candidate at this point), which would make this pick more logical. Chandler struggled with injuries as a rookie, but both he and Nwangwu profile more as speedy scatbacks than true between-the-tackle runners like Mattison. Even Mattison has never been a true three-down back. McBride plays much more similarly to Mattison than the other backs on the team. He will try to carve out a role behind him as the future thunder to the lightning provided by Chandler and Nwangwu.
UDFA FB Zach Ojile, Minnesota Duluth Profile: 6Sr 6'0" 241lbs 31.5" Arms 8.5" Hands 75.5" Wing 4.78 40\
1.79 10* 31" VJ* 9'1" BJ* 4.40 Shuttle* 31 Bench* 4.15 RAS* 2022 Stats: 11 Gm 12 Rush 53 Rush Yds 3 Rush TD 25 Rec 289 Rec Yds 5 Rec TD
A Twin Cities native, Ojile was a late addition to the roster, joining after a May rookie minicamp tryout. Ojile played LB, QB, FS, and RB in high school but found a role as an H-Back at UMD. He served as a team captain the past two seasons and finishes his collegiate career with over 1100 total yards and 24 total TDs. He was an All-Conference player for the DII NSIC Bulldogs. Whether Ojile participates at FB or TE, he'll need to prove his versatility to beat out the veterans on the depth chart. Working in his favor is Kevin O'Connell's shift to a more base-heavy offense in 2023. WR Cephus Johnson, Southeastern Louisiana Profile: 6Sr 6'4" 223lbs 33.25" Arm\
8.5" Hand* 78.625" WIng* 4.57 40* 1.59 10* 36.5" VJ* 10'1" BJ* 4.39 Shuttle* 7.25 3c* 18 Bench* 9.48 RAS* 2022 Stats: 11 Gm 184 Pass Att 65% Comp 1354 Pass Yds 10 Pass TD 5 INT 89 Rush 488 Rush Yds 5 Rush TD
Johnson is making the fulltime switch from QB to WR as he attempts to latch on to an NFL practice squad. He earned the starting role for South Alabama as a redshirt junior before transferring to SE Louisiana, where he took some snaps at WR in spring games. Johnson's stats were unimpressive as a starting QB, notching just 1354 yards and a 2:1 TD:INT ratio in 11 starts. He has good size and instincts as a runner, but he has basically no experience playing WR. WR Lucky Jackson, W Kentucky / XFL DC Defenders Profile: RSr 6'0" 179lbs 9.624" Hand\
32.25" Arm* 75.875" Wing** 2023 Stats: 10 Gm 36 Rec 572 Yds 5 TD 1 Fmb
Jackson last put on a college uniform before the pandemic for Western Kentucky, where his 2019 season saw him put up over 1100 yards on 94 receptions. Following his college days, Jackson spent time in the CFL and the Spring League before joining the XFL's DC Defenders and becoming an All-XFL receiver. WR Malik Knowles, Kansas St Profile: RSr 6'2" 196lbs 32.25" Arm 8.75" Hand 77.625" Wing 2022 Stats: 14 Gm 48 Rec 725 YDs 2 TD 8 Rush 164 Rush Yds 3 Rush TD 23 KR 592 KR Yds
Knowles is a vertical threat with good size and length. He offers value as a kick returner and leaves Kansas State with a top 5 rank in all-purpose yards. Knowles is an undeveloped route runner that struggles with quick change-of-direction. He also has trouble with press coverage. He'll need to prove his value on special teams, where he has plenty of collegiate experience as a kick returner. WR Grant Maag, North Dakota Profile: 5Sr 6'4" 206lbs 9.25" Hand\
31.875" Arm* 77.625" Wing* 4.49 40YD* 1.60 10YS* 40.5" VJ* 10'5" BJ* 4.34 Shuttle* 6.90 3c* 8.50 RAS* 2022 Stats: 12 Gm 41 Rec 540 Yds 5 TDs
Maag was brought in following the announcement of Ben Ellefson's retirement. He is an Inver Grove Heights native and a graduate of St Croix Lutheran in St Paul. He leaves North Dakota with over 2000 yards over his five years and served as a team captain the past two seasons. His size gives him an advantage with a shorter WR group ahead of him, but Maag is a far cry from a roster lock. WR Thayer Thomas, NC State Profile: 6Sr 6'0" 198lbs 9" Hand\
30.125" Arm* 73.5" Wing 4.56 40* 1.63 10* 37" VJ* 10' BJ* 4.03 Shuttle* 6.93 3c* 15 Bench* 7.85 RAS* 2022 Stats: 13 Gm 57 Rec 642 Yds 4 TDs 2 Rush Att 44 Rush Yds 1 Rush TD 17 PR 128 PR Yds
A multisport athlete that was drafted by the Red Sox in 2019, Thomas walked onto the Wolfpack football team and got onto the field any way he could. In 2018, he saw work as a receiver, punt returner, and passer. Thomas has good hands (a career drop rate of 4%) and a high work ethic, but he is an undeveloped route runner that struggles to create much after the catch. He will need to prove his worth on special teams if he wants to make the roster. TE Ben Sims, Baylor Profile: RSr 6'4" 250lbs 33.125" Arm\
9.5" Hand* 80.125" Wing* 4.58 40YD* 1.56 10YS 36" Vert* 10'2" Broad* 4.41 Shuttle* 7.46 3c* 15 Bench* 8.40 RAS* 2022 Stats: 12 Gm 31 Rec 255 Yds 3 TDs 2 Drops 1 Rush TD
Sims projects as a blocking tight end with limited ability as a receiver. He's a patient run blocker with good balance and toughness, but he is still cleaning up some technique. He isn't a creator with the ball in his hands and his tape fails to demonstrate the explosiveness that his testing suggests. OL Alan Ali, TCU Profile: RSr 6'4" 301lbs 32.875" Arm 9.5" Hand 77.625" Wing 5.23 40\
1.89 10* 26.5" VJ 8'5" BJ* 4.91 Shuttle* 7.94 3c* 3.80 RAS*
A 5 year starter for TCU and SMU, Ali is a fundamentally sound center prospect with good body control and core strength. He has experience playing at all 5 OL positions but spent most of the past 4 years at center. His lack of athleticism and length are likely the reason he went undrafted. OT Jacky Chen, Pace Profile: RSr 6'5 1/4" 299lbs 10" Hand\
34.5" Arm* 80.75" Wing* 5.41 40* 1.81 10* 29" VJ* 8'10" BJ* 4.74 Shuttle* 7.90 3c* 24 Bench* 5.39 RAS*
It's hard to find very much information on an undrafted lineman from a DII school whose toughest opponent was the University of New Haven. Chen is an OT prospect that is viewed as a ball of clay. Chen's 40 yard dash and 3 cone were underwhelming to say the least, but he was an above average tester in burst and explosiveness drills. That combined with his length make him an interesting project. EDGE Andre Carter II, Army Profile: Sr 6'6.5" 256lbs 9.375" Hand 33.275" Arm 81 Wing 4.91 40\
1.65 10* 30" VJ 9'1" BJ 4.36 Shuttle 6.97 3c* 11 Bench 6.29 RAS* 2022 Stats: 10 Gm 41 TKL 7 TFL 3.5 SCK 2 PD
The highest profile UDFA signing of the class, Carter was getting 1st round buzz this time last year
. At that time, Carter was coming off an 18.5 TFL / 15.5 sack season. However, Carter struggled to repeat his production as a senior, notching just 3.5 sacks. Carter finished out the draft cycle with lackluster testing, failing to run under a 4.90 in the 40 yard dash and weighing in at a mere 256 lbs -- a big concern given his 81 inch wingspan and towering stature. Carter has a ton of upside, but he doesn't have the frame to be a real NFL player right now. After 4 years training to be an officer in the US Army, he will need at least one season (maybe more) in an NFL weight room where he can focus on building muscle mass. He'll look to follow the mold of fellow Army player Alejandro Villanueva, who added 43 lbs to his 277 lbs frame entering the league before becoming a 7-year starter. Luckily, he joined the team with one of the best training facilities in the league. EDGE Junior Aho, SMU Profile: 6'2" 260lbs 9" Hand 33.875" Arm 79.875" Wing 4.58 40\
1.66 10* 33.5" VJ* 10'3" BJ* 4.90 Shuttle* 7.38 3c* 9.38 RAS* 2022 Stats: 13 Gm 23 TKL 2 TFL 2 SCK 1 FF
Quite simply, Aho is an athletic freak that should find his way onto the team thanks to the International Player Pathway roster spot. He takes pride in his speed and athleticism, but he also understands the limitations to his game. Aho was a solid rotational player for SMU. He will look to follow in the footsteps of other International Pathway players like Efe Obada and Jordan Mailata. DT Calvin Avery, Illinois Profile: RSr 6'1" 343 lbs 10" Hand\
32.5" Arm 81.87" Wing 5.37 40* 1.84 10* 30.5" VJ* 8'5" BJ* 8.01 3c* 31 Bench* 3.12 RAS* 2022 Stats: 13 Gm 23 TKL 2 TFL 1 PD
Avery is a former four star recruit out of Texas, earning snaps in 12 games as a true freshman. He started 12 games in 2022, primarily at nose tackle. He has a wide, large frame that makes him hard to move. However, he is an underwhelming athlete to say the least, and his statistical production is nearly non-existent. LB Abraham Beauplan, Marshall Profile: RSr 5'11" 241 lbs 9.25" Hand 31.75" Arm 77 1/4" Wing 4.62 Shuttle 35.5" VJ 9'9" BJ 7.33 3c 22 Bench 4.52 RAS 2022 Stats: 12 Gm 66 TKL 6.5 TFL 1 SCK 3 PD
Beauplan started the draft process by making an appearance on Bruce Feldman's Freaks List, reportedly squatting as much as 565 lbs and benching as much as 285. The few reports that exist on Beauplan suggest he's an urgent, downhill run defender that will look to carve out a role on special teams early on. LB Wilson Huber, Cincinnati Profile: 6Sr 6'4" 241lbs 9.75" Hand 32.375" Arm\
80" Wing* 4.70 40* 1.66 10* 35" VJ* 10'4" BJ* 4.45 Shuttle* 6.91 3c* 18 Bench* 8.34 RAS* 2022 Stats: 13 Gm 54 TKL 6.5 TFL 1 SCK 1 PD
A 3 star recruit out of Indiana, Huber started his career at Cincinnati as a TE. He played a hybrid role in his first 2 non-redshirt seasons, earning snaps on offense, defense, and special teams. He made a full role switch to the defensive side of the ball in 2020 and eventually earned the team captain moniker in 2022. Huber had some solid testing despite profiling as more of a thumper. LB Ivan Pace Jr, Cincinnati Profile: Sr 5'10.5" 231lbs 30.25" Arm 9.5" Hand 72" Wing 4.59 40\
1.70 10* 35" VJ 9'8" BJ* 4.40 Shuttle * 7.18 3c* 22 Bench* 5.71 RAS* 2022 Stats: 13 Gm 137 TKL 21.5 TFL 10 SCK 3 FF 4 PD
Ranked the 11th best LB for Daniel Jeremiah, 9th for Dane Brugler, and 7th for PFF, many thought Pace could have gone as early as Round 3. Pace was a one year starter for the Bearcats after transferring from Miami (Ohio), and he hit the ground running. He led the AAC in tackles and TFLs. He is a smaller player (although not abnormally so in today's game) that plays with his hair on fire. He gives tremendous effort on every play and is always around the ball. Pace is a super tough player that loves to tackle. His size is a concern; he gets washed out of plays too easily. He is also lacking in coverage skills, struggling to stay connected in man coverage. Still, it's incredible that Pace went undrafted. He's an easy special teams projection as a rookie with the upside to be put in position to win under Flores. CB CJ Coldon, Oklahoma Profile: 6Sr 5'10" 186lbs\
8.375" Hand* 31.125" Arm* 75.125" Wing* 4.60 40* 1.58 10* 37 1/2" VJ* 10'5" BJ* 4.24 Shuttle* 7.31 3c* 3.92 RAS* 2022 Stats: 12 Gm 42 TKL 2 TFL 4 INT 6 PBU
Coldon is an instinctual football player that relies on his feel to create ball production. He spent 5 years at Wyoming before transferring to Oklahoma and leading the team in INTs and PBUs. In zone, Coldon watches the QB and looks for the right cue to understand when and where the ball is headed. CB NaJee Thompson, Georgia Southern Profile: 5'10" 200lbs 9.125" Hand 32.75" Arm 76.625" Wing 4.57 40\
1.63 10* 32" VJ* 9'8" BJ* 4.56 Shuttle* 7.40 3c* 13 Bench* 1.59 RAS* 2022 Stats: 13 Gm 37 TKL 1 TFL 11 PD 1 INT
Thompson's love for the game is undeniable. After struggling to latch onto the Georgia Southern WR room, Thompson approached his head coach asking to be exclusively a special teams player. He relishes being a gunner on punts. He eventually got moved to CB in 2021, logging 557 snaps at the position in 2022. He's undeveloped at the position, but his special teams prowess gives him a good shot at the roster. CB Jaylin Williams, Indiana Profile: RSr 5'9" 184lbs 9.125" Hand 29.875" Arm 71.75" Wing 4.43 40\
1.58 10* 34.5" BJ* 9'11" BJ* 4.20 Shuttle* 7.01 3c* 13 Bench* 5.54 RAS* 2022 Stats: 10 Gm 40 TKL 2.5 TFL 7 PD 1 FR 1 BLK
A longtime role player for the Hoosiers before becoming a fulltime starter in 2019, Williams's 6 career INTs were the most amongst active players on the team last season. He earned second team All-Confernece honors in 2020 and was an honorable mention in 2021. K Jack Podlesny, Georgia Profile: RSr 6'0" 195lbs 29.25" Arms 9" Hands 74.75" Wing 2022 Stats: 31 Att 26 Made 50 Long 109 Kickoff 72 Touchbacks 74 PAT Att 73 PAT Made
Ranked as Dane Brugler's 4th kicker and Lance Zierlein's 3rd kicker, Podlesny enters Vikings camp following a career that saw him walk on to Georgia's football team and finish with an 82% hit rate. He hit all but one extra point last season for the national champion Bulldogs. A concern with Podlesny is his leg strength. His accuracy beyond 40 yards falls to just 54%. His clutchness may also come into question as he missed two kicks in the national championship semifinals against Ohio State.
Projected Depth Chart
Pos (Projected 2023 Rostered Count / 2022 Rostered Count): Starter
QB (2/2): Kirk Cousins
, Jaren Hall,
RB (4/4): Alexander Mattison
, Kene Nwangwu, Ty Chandler, DeWayne McBride,
FB (1/1): CJ Ham
WR (5/5): Justin Jefferson
, KJ Osborn
, Jordan Addison
, Jalen Nailor, Brandon Powell,
TE (3/3): TJ Hockenson
, Josh Oliver, Johnny Mundt,
OL (9/10): Christian Darrisaw
, Ezra Cleveland
, Garrett Bradbury
, Ed Ingram
, Brian O'Neill
, Chris Reed, Austin Schlottman, Oli Udoh, Blake Brandel,
DT (7/6): Harrison Phillips
, Dean Lowry
, Jonathan Bullard
, James Lynch, Esezi Otomewo, Jaquelin Roy, Khyiris Tonga,
EDGE (4/5): Danielle Hunter
, Marcus Davenport
, Pat Jones II, DJ Wonnum,
Andre Carter II
ILB (4/4): Jordan Hicks
, Brian Asamoah
, Troy Reeder, Ivan Pace Jr,
CB (5/6): Byron Murphy
, Andrew Booth
, Akayleb Evans
, Mekhi Blakmon, Joejuan Williams,
S (5/4): Harrison Smith
, Lewis Cine
, Jay Ward, Josh Metellus, Camryn Bynum,
K (1/1): Greg Joseph
P (1/1): Ryan Wright
LS (1/1): Andrew DePaola
KR: Kene Nwangwu
PR: Brandon Powell
2024 Needs Starters Needed:
QB, OG, EDGE, DT -- Whether due to expiring contracts (Cousins, Cleveland, Davenport, Hunter) or overall suckitude (Ingram, Lowry), we need to find new starters at this positions in 2024. Could we go on with average-level free agents? Maybe. Should we? Maybe not. We'll see how the group plays:
CB, LB, RB -- These are positions where the front office is counting on young players (Booth, Evans, Asamoah) to fill the roles of departed starters. If those players take that step up, these positions drop on the needs list. Otherwise, we're in for a rough season. Depth needed:
WR -- The depth after Jefferson, Osborn, and Addison is not great. And Osborn is entering a contract year. Unless Keenan McCardell works some magic with Jalen Nailor or Trishton Jackson or Thayer Thomas, this should be a position we add to next year.
Final Thoughts Versatility.
When we look at this Vikings draft class, that's the first word that comes to mind, and it comes in big bold letters. Addison has inside-outside versatility. So does Mekhi Blackmon. Jay Ward is the most versatile of the group, capable of playing every DB position plus some spot snaps at LB. Roy has been productive everywhere from 0T to 4i. And the team has talked about how much they believe McBride can contribute as a pass catcher on top of his bruiser mindset as a between-the-tackles runner.
On offense, this shift seems to stem from a philosophical change following the TJ Hockenson acquisition last year. O'Connell's unit went from trying to copy-paste Sean McVay's outside zone scheme (largely a 3WR offense) to Kyle Shanahan's outside zone scheme (largely a TE-FB offense). And in that mold, O'Connell was looking for players he could use to create the illusion of complexity. That is, how can we employ versatile players to present defenses the threat of multiplicity?
On defense, the answer is a lot simpler. By bringing over Brian Flores, the team is hoping for a jolt in tenacity and an overall move to a hybrid amoeba scheme. You can look historically at how Bill Belichick has utilized flexibility in his defenses to maximize his gameplan for whatever offensive scheme is next on the menu. You can look at players on the line of scrimmage that have experience in both 43 and 34 schemes (Hunter, Phillips, Lynch, Bullard). And in the secondary, look no further than the selection of Jay Ward as an attempt to clone players like Jevon Holland and Kyle Dugger.
As Adofo-Mensah has repeatedly said, he approaches his job with humility. He listens to those around him and he finds the point where stories marry data to make informed decisions. And in O'Connell, he found someone who shares that mentality. With the emphasis on versatility, that mindset can now be applied on a weekly (and play-by-play) basis to opponents. We'll see how successful that strategy is as the team continues to straddle the line between competitive and rebuilder, but there is certainly an energy around the fanbase with the continued success of the offense and the addition of Brian Flores.
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