Flip up iron sights picatinny rail


2013.05.03 04:43 cobratac FIND THE BEST DEALS ON AR PARTS

Find the best deals on AR Parts. feel free to post the best deals you find online! Find Barrels, uppers, lowers, muzzle brakes, quad rails, bcg's, lower parts kits, back up sights flip up sights , dot sights and much more

2023.03.20 20:23 EliteRobo04 Paradox forms for Toxel and Spheal: Toxic Yell and Iron Globe!

Paradox forms for Toxel and Spheal: Toxic Yell and Iron Globe! submitted by EliteRobo04 to fakemon [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 20:23 EliteRobo04 Paradox forms for Toxel and Spheal: Toxic Yell and Iron Globe!

Paradox forms for Toxel and Spheal: Toxic Yell and Iron Globe! submitted by EliteRobo04 to PokemonScarletViolet [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 20:23 EliteRobo04 Paradox forms for Toxel and Spheal: Toxic Yell and Iron Globe!

Paradox forms for Toxel and Spheal: Toxic Yell and Iron Globe! submitted by EliteRobo04 to pokemon [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 19:33 InevitableMassive739 Need help deciding on a historic, military shotgun: model 1897 vs model 1912 vs Ithaca model 37

I’m in the market for a shotgun for trap shooting, bird hunting, self defense etc.
I’ve always been drawn towards old historic guns that the military used so I’m considering between 3 that the US military has used in the past rather than buying a modern firearm. I enjoy the lack of modern technology on old guns as it forces more skill, my first rifle is a mosin nagant and I haven’t had more fun with a gun than when I got the iron sights honed in and consistently hitting a steel plate at 100m and 200m.
The 3 I’m considering are: - Winchester model 1897 (ww1 and ww2) - Winchester model 1912 (ww1 and ww2) - Ithaca model 37 (ww2, Korea, Vietnam)
I’m initially drawn to the 1897 because I think the external hammer makes for a really unique gun. I’ve heard that you’ll smash your thumb up nice and good with improper hand placement but I don’t see that being an issue after some practice.
If anyone has had experience with these shotguns and can give me some info/tips based on your personal experience it’d be great!
submitted by InevitableMassive739 to guns [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 19:33 _Triple_ [STORE] 900+ KNIVES/GLOVES/SKINS, 50.000$+ INVENTORY. M9 Fade, M4 Poseidon, Kara Gamma, BFK Freehand, BFK Bright Water, Spec Gloves Kimono, Nomad Fade, M9 Doppler, Skeleton, BFK B.Steel, AWP Fade, Stiletto Fade, S.Gloves Slingshot, BFK Ultra, Kara Damas, Bayo Lore, Bayo Gamma, Flip Fade & A Lot More

Everything in my inventory is up for trade. The most valuable items are listed here, the rest you can find in My Inventory

Feel free to Add Me or even better send a Trade Offer. Open for any suggestions: upgrades, downgrades / knives, gloves, skins / stickers, patterns, floats.

All Buyouts are listed in cash value.


★ Butterfly Knife Freehand FN #1, B/O: $1867

★ Butterfly Knife Bright Water MW, B/O: $1098

★ Butterfly Knife Blue Steel BS, B/O: $907

★ Butterfly Knife Ultraviolet FT, B/O: $789

★ Butterfly Knife Stained FT, B/O: $695

★ Bayonet Tiger Tooth MW #1, B/O: $888

★ Bayonet Gamma Doppler (Phase 4) FN, B/O: $727

★ Bayonet Doppler (Phase 2) FN, B/O: $608

★ Bayonet Doppler (Phase 1) FN, B/O: $521

★ Bayonet Rust Coat BS, B/O: $253

★ Bayonet Night FT, B/O: $251

★ StatTrak™ Bayonet Lore MW, B/O: $751

★ Karambit Gamma Doppler (Phase 4) FN, B/O: $1343

★ Karambit Damascus Steel FT, B/O: $774

★ Karambit Rust Coat BS, B/O: $537

★ Karambit Boreal Forest FT, B/O: $488

★ M9 Bayonet Fade FN, B/O: $1523

★ M9 Bayonet Fade FN, B/O: $1523

★ M9 Bayonet Doppler (Phase 4) FN, B/O: $1008

★ M9 Bayonet Blue Steel FT, B/O: $534

★ M9 Bayonet Rust Coat BS, B/O: $449

★ Flip Knife Fade FN, B/O: $703

★ Flip Knife Gamma Doppler (Phase 1) MW, B/O: $509

★ Flip Knife Doppler (Phase 1) FN, B/O: $406

★ Flip Knife Freehand FT, B/O: $228

★ StatTrak™ Flip Knife Bright Water FN, B/O: $332

★ Falchion Knife Doppler (Phase 2) FN, B/O: $292

★ Falchion Knife Doppler (Phase 3) FN, B/O: $264

★ Falchion Knife Marble Fade FN, B/O: $258

★ Falchion Knife Bright Water MW, B/O: $133

★ Stiletto Knife Fade FN, B/O: $822

★ Stiletto Knife Slaughter FN, B/O: $569

★ Stiletto Knife Doppler (Phase 1) FN, B/O: $530

★ Stiletto Knife Crimson Web FT, B/O: $396

★ StatTrak™ Stiletto Knife Scorched FT, B/O: $172

★ Gut Knife Doppler (Sapphire) MW #1, B/O: $830

★ Gut Knife Fade FN, B/O: $204

★ Gut Knife Tiger Tooth FN, B/O: $138

★ Gut Knife Bright Water MW, B/O: $104

★ Gut Knife Freehand FT, B/O: $92

★ Gut Knife Urban Masked FT, B/O: $82

★ StatTrak™ Gut Knife Rust Coat BS, B/O: $93

★ Shadow Daggers Fade FN, B/O: $258

★ Shadow Daggers Doppler (Phase 3) FN, B/O: $165

★ Shadow Daggers Blue Steel FT, B/O: $82

★ Shadow Daggers Bright Water FT, B/O: $82

★ Shadow Daggers Blue Steel WW, B/O: $80

★ Shadow Daggers Rust Coat BS, B/O: $74

★ StatTrak™ Shadow Daggers Marble Fade FN, B/O: $186

★ Classic Knife Slaughter MW, B/O: $311

★ StatTrak™ Classic Knife Stained BS, B/O: $163

★ Talon Knife Slaughter MW, B/O: $605

★ Talon Knife Scorched MW, B/O: $290

★ Ursus Knife Marble Fade FN, B/O: $405

★ Ursus Knife Night Stripe MW, B/O: $162

★ Paracord Knife Stained WW, B/O: $125

★ Paracord Knife Forest DDPAT FT, B/O: $97

★ Paracord Knife Safari Mesh FT, B/O: $96

★ Navaja Knife Safari Mesh FT, B/O: $71

★ Navaja Knife Scorched WW, B/O: $71

★ Nomad Knife Fade FN, B/O: $1015

★ Skeleton Knife, B/O: $909

★ Bowie Knife Boreal Forest MW, B/O: $106

★ Survival Knife Forest DDPAT FT, B/O: $97


★ Driver Gloves Crimson Weave FT, B/O: $335

★ Driver Gloves King Snake BS, B/O: $270

★ Driver Gloves Lunar Weave WW, B/O: $113

★ Driver Gloves Overtake WW, B/O: $88

★ Driver Gloves Overtake BS, B/O: $67

★ Moto Gloves Transport MW, B/O: $171

★ Moto Gloves Polygon BS, B/O: $137

★ Moto Gloves Transport WW, B/O: $71

★ Moto Gloves 3rd Commando Company BS, B/O: $62

★ Specialist Gloves Crimson Kimono WW, B/O: $1027

★ Specialist Gloves Tiger Strike FT, B/O: $654

★ Specialist Gloves Mogul FT, B/O: $295

★ Specialist Gloves Lt. Commander FT, B/O: $277

★ Specialist Gloves Crimson Web FT, B/O: $275

★ Sport Gloves Slingshot FT, B/O: $796

★ Sport Gloves Amphibious BS #2, B/O: $699

★ Sport Gloves Omega FT, B/O: $656

★ Broken Fang Gloves Unhinged BS, B/O: $60


AK-47 Case Hardened BS, B/O: $130

AK-47 Bloodsport MW, B/O: $79

AK-47 Fuel Injector BS, B/O: $76

AK-47 Fuel Injector BS, B/O: $76

AK-47 Bloodsport FT, B/O: $70

AK-47 Neon Rider MW, B/O: $60

AWP Fade FN, B/O: $864


AWP Containment Breach FT, B/O: $69

AWP Containment Breach FT, B/O: $69

AWP Wildfire FT, B/O: $59

AWP Chromatic Aberration FN, B/O: $59

StatTrak™ AWP Hyper Beast FT, B/O: $65

StatTrak™ AWP Hyper Beast FT, B/O: $65

Desert Eagle Blaze FN, B/O: $565

Desert Eagle Blaze FN, B/O: $565

Desert Eagle Printstream FN, B/O: $155

Desert Eagle Cobalt Disruption FN, B/O: $58

M4A1-S Icarus Fell FN, B/O: $414

M4A1-S Printstream MW, B/O: $204

M4A1-S Printstream MW, B/O: $204

M4A4 Poseidon FN, B/O: $1402

M4A4 The Emperor FN, B/O: $152

M4A4 Asiimov WW, B/O: $97

USP-S Kill Confirmed MW, B/O: $65

USP-S Printstream FT, B/O: $69

StatTrak™ USP-S Kill Confirmed FT, B/O: $123

StatTrak™ USP-S Neo-Noir FN, B/O: $106

AUG Flame Jörmungandr FN, B/O: $218

P2000 Ocean Foam FN, B/O: $139

Souvenir SSG 08 Death Strike MW, B/O: $81

CZ75-Auto Emerald Quartz MW, B/O: $61

Trade Offer Link - Steam Profile Link - My Inventory

Knives - Bowie Knife, Butterfly Knife, Falchion Knife, Flip Knife, Gut Knife, Huntsman Knife, M9 Bayonet, Bayonet, Karambit, Shadow Daggers, Stiletto Knife, Ursus Knife, Navaja Knife, Talon Knife, Classic Knife, Paracord Knife, Survival Knife, Nomad Knife, Skeleton Knife, Patterns - Gamma Doppler, Doppler (Phase 1, Phase 2, Phase 3, Phase 4, Black Pearl, Sapphire, Ruby, Emerald), Crimson Web, Lore, Fade, Ultraviolet, Night, Marble Fade (Fire & Ice, Fake FI), Case Hardened (Blue Gem), Autotronic, Slaughter, Black Laminate, Tiger Tooth, Boreal Forest, Scorched, Blue Steel, Vanilla, Damascus Steel, Forest DDPAT, Urban Masked, Freehand, Stained, Bright Water, Safari Mesh, Rust Coat, Gloves - Bloodhound Gloves (Charred, Snakebite, Guerrilla, Bronzed), Driver Gloves (Snow Leopard, King Snake, Crimson Weave, Imperial Plaid, Black Tie, Lunar Weave, Diamondback, Rezan the Red, Overtake, Queen Jaguar, Convoy, Racing Green), Hand Wraps (Cobalt Skulls, CAUTION!, Overprint, Slaughter, Leather, Giraffe, Badlands, Spruce DDPAT, Arboreal, Constrictor, Desert Shamagh, Duct Tape), Moto Gloves (Spearmint, POW!, Cool Mint, Smoke Out, Finish Line, Polygon, Blood Pressure, Turtle, Boom!, Eclipse, 3rd Commando Company, Transport), Specialist Gloves (Crimson Kimono, Tiger Strike, Emerald Web, Field Agent, Marble Fade, Fade, Foundation, Lt. Commander, Crimson Web, Mogul, Forest DDPAT, Buckshot), Sport Gloves (Pandora's Box, Superconductor, Hedge Maze, Vice, Amphibious, Slingshot, Omega, Arid, Big Game, Nocts, Scarlet Shamagh, Bronze Morph), Hydra Gloves (Case Hardened, Emerald, Rattler, Mangrove), Broken Fang Gloves (Jade, Yellow-banded, Unhinged, Needle Point), Pistols - P2000 (Ocean Foam, Fire Element, Amber Fade, Corticera, Chainmail, Imperial Dragon, Obsidian, Scorpion, Handgun, Acid Etched), USP-S (Printstream, Kill Confirmed, Whiteout, Road Rash, Owergrowth, The Traitor, Neo-Noir, Dark Water, Orion, Blueprint, Stainless, Caiman, Serum, Monster Mashup, Royal Blue, Ancient Visions, Cortex, Orange Anolis, Ticket To Hell, Black Lotus, Cyrex, Check Engine, Guardian, Purple DDPAT, Torque, Blood Tiger, Flashback, Business Class, Pathfinder, Para Green), Lead Conduit, Glock-18 (Fade, Candy Apple, Bullet Queen, Synth Leaf, Neo-Noir, Nuclear Garden, Dragon Tatto, Reactor, Pink DDPAT, Twilight Galaxy, Sand Dune, Groundwater, Blue Fissure, Snack Attack, Water Elemental, Brass, Wasteland Rebel, Vogue, Franklin, Royal Legion, Gamma Doppler, Weasel, Steel Disruption, Ironwork, Grinder, High Beam, Moonrise, Oxide Blaze, Bunsen Burner, Clear Polymer, Bunsen Burner, Night), P250 (Nuclear Threat, Modern Hunter, Splash, Whiteout, Vino Primo, Mehndi, Asiimov, Visions, Undertow, Cartel, See Ya Later, Gunsmoke, Splash, Digital Architect, Muertos, Red Rock, Bengal Tiger, Crimson Kimono, Wingshot, Metallic DDPAT, Hive, Dark Filigree, Mint Kimono), Five-Seven (Neon Kimono, Berries And Cherries, Fall Hazard, Crimson Blossom, Hyper Beast, Nitro, Fairy Tale, Case Hardened, Copper Galaxy, Angry Mob, Monkey Business, Fowl Play, Anodized Gunmetal, Hot Shot, Retrobution, Boost Protocol), CZ75-Auto (Chalice, Crimson Web, Emerald Quartz, The Fuschia is Now, Nitro, Xiangliu, Yellow Jacket, Victoria, Poison Dart, Syndicate, Eco, Hexane, Pole, Tigris), Tec-9 (Terrace, Nuclear Threat, Hades, Rust Leaf, Decimator, Blast From, Orange Murano, Toxic, Fuel Injector, Remote Control, Bamboo Forest, Isaac, Avalanche, Brother, Re-Entry, Blue Titanium, Bamboozle), R8 Revolver (Fade, Blaze, Crimson Web, Liama Cannon, Crazy 8, Reboot, Canal Spray, Night, Amber Fade), Desert Eagle (Blaze, Hand Cannon, Fennec Fox, Sunset Storm, Emerald Jörmungandr, Pilot, Hypnotic, Golden Koi, Printstream, Cobalt Disruption, Code Red, Ocean Drive, Midnight Storm, Kumicho Dragon, Crimson Web, Heirloom, Night Heist, Mecha Industries, Night, Conspiracy, Trigger Discipline, Naga, Directive, Light Rail), Dual Berettas (Flora Carnivora, Duelist, Cobra Strike, Black Limba, Emerald, Hemoglobin, Twin Turbo, Marina, Melondrama, Pyre, Retribution, Briar, Dezastre, Royal Consorts, Urban Shock, Dualing Dragons, Panther, Balance), Rifles - Galil (Aqua Terrace, Winter Forest, Chatterbox, Sugar Rush, Pheonix Blacklight, CAUTION!, Orange DDPAT, Cerberus, Dusk Ruins, Eco, Chromatic Aberration, Stone Cold, Tuxedo, Sandstorm, Shattered, Urban Rubble, Rocket Pop, Kami, Crimson Tsunami, Connexion), SCAR-20 (Brass, Cyrex, Palm, Splash Jam, Cardiac, Emerald, Crimson Web, Magna Carta, Stone Mosaico, Bloodsport, Enforcer), AWP (Gungnir, Dragon Lore, Prince, Medusa, Desert Hydra, Fade, Lightning Strike, Oni Taiji, Silk Tiger, Graphite, Chromatic Aberration, Asiimov, Snake Camo, Boom, Containment Breach, Wildfire, Redline, Electric Hive, Hyper Beast, Neo-Noir, Man-o'-war, Pink DDPAT, Corticera, Sun in Leo, Elite Build, Fever Dream, Atheris, Mortis, PAW, Exoskeleton, Worm God, POP AWP, Phobos, Acheron, Pit Viper, Capillary, Safari Mesh), AK-47 (Wild Lotus, Gold Arabesque, X-Ray, Fire Serpent, Hydroponic, Panthera Onca, Case Hardened, Vulcan, Jet Set, Fuel Injector, Bloodsport, Nightwish, First Class, Neon Rider, Asiimov, Red Laminate, Aquamarine Revenge, The Empress, Wasteland Rebel, Jaguar, Black Laminate, Leet Museo, Neon Revolution, Redline, Frontside Misty, Predator, Legion of Anubis, Point Disarray, Orbit Mk01, Blue Laminate, Green Laminate, Emerald Pinstripe, Cartel, Phantom Disruptor, Jungle Spray, Safety Net, Rat Rod, Baroque Purple, Slate, Elite Build, Uncharted, Safari Mesh), FAMAS (Sundown, Prime Conspiracy, Afterimage, Commemoration, Dark Water, Spitfire, Pulse, Eye of Athena, Meltdown, Rapid Eye Move, Roll Cage, Styx, Mecha Industrie, Djinn, ZX Spectron, Valence, Neural Net, Night Borre, Hexne), M4A4 (Howl, Poseidon, Asiimov, Daybreak, Hellfire, Zirka, Red DDPAT, Radiation Hazard, Modern Hunter, The Emperor, The Coalition, Bullet Rain, Cyber Security, X-Ray, Dark Blossom, Buzz Kill, In Living Color, Neo-Noir, Desolate Space, 龍王 (Dragon King), Royal Paladin, The Battlestar, Global Offensive, Tooth Fairy, Desert-Strike, Griffin, Evil Daimyo, Spider Lily, Converter), M4A1-S (Welcome to the Jungle, Imminent Danger, Knight, Hot Rod, Icarus Fell, Blue Phosphor, Printstream, Master Piece, Dark Water, Golden Coil, Bright Water, Player Two, Atomic Alloy, Guardian, Chantico's Fire, Hyper Beast, Mecha Industries, Cyrex, Control Panel, Moss Quartz, Nightmare, Decimator, Leaded Glass, Basilisk, Blood Tiger, Briefing, Night Terror, Nitro, VariCamo, Flashback), SG 553 (Hazard Pay, Bulldozer, Integrale, Dragon Tech, Ultraviolet, Colony IV, Hypnotic, Cyrex, Candy Apple, Barricade, Pulse), SSG 08 (Death Strike, Sea Calico, Blood in the Water, Orange Filigree, Dragonfire, Big Iron, Bloodshot, Detour, Turbo Peek, Red Stone), AUG (Akihabara Accept, Flame Jörmungandr, Hot Rod, Midnight Lily, Sand Storm, Carved Jade, Wings, Anodized Navy, Death by Puppy, Torque, Bengal Tiger, Chameleon, Fleet Flock, Random Access, Momentum, Syd Mead, Stymphalian, Arctic Wolf, Aristocrat, Navy Murano), G3SG1 (Chronos, Violet Murano, Flux, Demeter, Orange Kimono, The Executioner, Green Apple, Arctic Polar Camo, Contractor), SMGs - P90 (Astral Jörmungandr, Run and Hide, Emerald Dragon, Cold Blooded, Death by Kitty, Baroque Red, Vent Rush, Blind Spot, Asiimov, Trigon, Sunset Lily, Death Grip, Leather, Nostalgia, Fallout Warning, Tiger Pit, Schermatic, Virus, Shapewood, Glacier Mesh, Shallow Grave, Chopper, Desert Warfare), MAC-10 (Hot Snakes, Copper Borre, Red Filigree, Gold Brick, Graven, Case Hardened, Stalker, Amber Fade, Neon Rider, Tatter, Curse, Propaganda, Nuclear Garden, Disco Tech, Toybox, Heat, Indigo), UMP-45 (Fade, Blaze, Day Lily, Minotaur's Labyrinth, Crime Scene, Caramel, Bone Pile, Momentum, Primal Saber), MP7 (Teal Blossom, Fade, Nemesis, Whiteout, Asterion, Bloosport, Abyssal Apparition, Full Stop, Special Delivery, Neon Ply, Asterion, Ocean Foam, Powercore, Scorched, Impire), PP-Bizon (Modern Hunter, Rust Coat, Forest Leaves, Antique, High Roller, Blue Streak, Seabird, Judgement of Anubis, Bamboo Print, Embargo, Chemical Green, Coblat Halftone, Fuel Rod, Photic Zone, Irradiated Alert, Carbon Fiber), MP9 (Wild Lily, Pandora's Box, Stained Glass, Bulldozer, Dark Age, Hot Rod, Hypnotic, Hydra, Rose Iron, Music Box, Setting Sun, Food Chain, Airlock, Mount Fuji, Starlight Protector, Ruby Poison Dart, Deadly Poison), MP5-SD (Oxide Oasis, Phosphor, Nitro, Agent, Autumn Twilly), Shotguns, Machineguns - Sawed-Off (Kiss♥Love, First Class, Orange DDPAT, Rust Coat, The Kraken, Devourer, Mosaico, Wasteland Princess, Bamboo Shadow, Copper, Serenity, Limelight, Apocalypto), XM1014 (Frost Borre, Ancient Lore, Red Leather, Elegant Vines, Banana Leaf, Jungle, Urban Perforated, Grassland, Blaze Orange, Heaven Guard, VariCamo Blue, Entombed, XOXO, Seasons, Tranquility, Bone Machine, Incinegator, Teclu Burner, Black Tie, Zombie Offensive, Watchdog), Nova (Baroque Orange, Hyper Beast, Green Apple, Antique, Modern Hunter, Walnut, Forest Leaves, Graphite, Blaze Orange, Rising Skull, Tempest, Bloomstick, Interlock, Quick Sand, Moon in Libra, Clean Polymer, Red Quartz, Toy Soldier), MAG-7 (Cinqueda, Counter Terrace, Prism Terrace, Memento, Chainmail, Hazard, Justice, Bulldozer, Silver, Core Breach, Firestarter, Praetorian, Heat, Hard Water, Monster Call, BI83 Spectrum, SWAG-7), M249 (Humidor, Shipping Forecast, Blizzard Marbleized, Downtown, Jungle DDPAT, Nebula Crusader, Impact Drill, Emerald Poison Dart), Negev (Mjölnir, Anodized Navy, Palm, Power Loader, Bratatat, CaliCamo, Phoenix Stencil, Infrastructure, Boroque Sand), Wear - Factory New (FN), Minimal Wear (MW), Field-Tested (FT), Well-Worn (WW), Battle-Scarred (BS), Stickers Holo/Foil/Gold - Katowice 2014, Krakow 2017, Howling Dawn, Katowice 2015, Crown, London 2018, Cologne 2014, Boston 2018, Atlanta 2017, Cluj-Napoca 2015, DreamHack 2014, King on the Field, Harp of War, Winged Difuser, Cologne 2016, Cologne 2015, MLG Columbus 2016, Katowice 2019, Berlin 2019, RMR 2020, Stockholm 2021, Antwerp 2022, Swag Foil, Flammable foil, Others - Souvenirs, Agents, Pins, Passes, Gifts, Music Kits, Cases, Keys, Capsules, Packages, Patches

Some items on the list may no longer be available or are still locked, visit My Inventory for more details.

Send a Trade Offer for fastest response. I consider all offers.

Add me for discuss if there is a serious offer that needs to be discussed.

submitted by _Triple_ to Csgotrading [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 19:21 whoever199888 Broke up with my (24F) boyfriend (32M) after he made me feel like dirt so often

We were together almost 1.5 years Incidents that really upset me included:
It all came to a head on the weekend, we were on a walk and happened to walk past the initial guy from my past that riled my bf up. Bf told me that guy still really upsets him and he’s pissed off and I never even tried to understand how awful it was what he did to my bf, I was like ‘hey it’s not nice for me either, he was chatting shit about sleeping with me which is so disrespectful to both of us’ and my bf flipped, said I only ever think of myself, I’m so selfish and don’t came about him
So I ended it yesterday. Any advice as to how to feel less like crap and reassure me I made the right decision would be great
submitted by whoever199888 to relationship_advice [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 19:16 Hendrick_Hiwpol Was anyone's chronic illness caused by an action you took which you play over in your mind day after day?

I am chronically ill now from long covid and I am thrown in to the world of hurt and suffering. I have moved from the land of the healthy to the land of malady.
My life was so on track and everything was going my way. At the end of my 30s it felt like I was finally starting to figure things out then in an instant it has flipped and I am in a living nightmare every day thinking what if I chose differently and continued to be cautious my life would not have been decimated.
There is no end in sight now to my suffering.
I wondered if others had similar situation happen via different means. I would like to hear your tales of woe as it is somewhat therapeutic even though it makes non of us better. It helps to know others arrived at their fucked up situations in a similar fashion.
I honestly just don't know how I will live with myself the rest of my life if nothing changes and having to live with that fucking decision for the rest of my life.
submitted by Hendrick_Hiwpol to ChronicIllness [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 19:09 PubertyDeformedFace Factors During Puberty That Led To My Face Getting Destroyed

Follow up to the post linked below.
I am The Only Hideously Ugly Deformed Tier Person In My Family : ForeverAlone (reddit.com)

Poor diet, lacto-vegetarian. Deficient in all B-vitamins, protein, zinc, iron and everything else. Took 0 supplements. Barely drank milk or yoghurt, just rice and curry for the most part, barely got any protein from lentils. Was clearly tired and exhausted all the time, irritable, worser cognitive performance, aches and pains everywhere most of this was reduced after supplementing and starting to eat meat.
My parents ate the same diet but weren't affected by it as negatively facially though it's possible they might have been more attractive if they were properly fed, they are likely much shorter as a result of it. They were unlikely affected by the other factors mentioned below.
Almost no exercise everyday from 14-16. The most crucial years of puberty I spent a huge amount of time watching TV on my laptop. There were only a couple of times I walked around near my house or went out somewhere.
Extreme stress, very high levels of cortisol and very sensitive to negative events that occurred which in hind-sight were not that big a deal, mostly caused by childhood trauma and unresolved PTSD.
Excessive porn and masturbation, did it 2 or 3 times a day sometimes more to the point of exhaustion. Would have severely depleted nutrients from my body along with lowering testosterone levels and the like.
Issues with sleep, not that bad but there were numerous periods of time where I got poor sleep and I did not commonly get 8 or 9 hours of sleep as recommended.
Mouth-breathing: didn't breathe with my nose very often, never followed proper tongue posture, did cause a little downward growth.
Even worse sleep, diet and far higher stress during India trip. Also, got sick from water poisoning during the trip and encountered periods of a lack of food due to travel.
All of this also would have reduced my height by 2 or 3 inches which would have resulted in me being tall instead of average height, like I was back then.
Yes, genetics play a role in the sense that if I had extraordinary genetics I might have gone from being potentially model looking to a little above average, like my parents. But most probably I had the genetics to be slightly above average or at least average but my face ended up hideously ugly deformity tier instead due to environmental factors.
submitted by PubertyDeformedFace to ForeverAlone [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 19:04 Botlawson How to prioritize supply stations on a rail network? (for side-products)

How do you prioritize consumption of side-products in a rail base? In vanilla this would apply to advanced-oil or Kovarex done via rail cars. For the Space Exploration mod this would be core mining, or for Kastorio 2 the filtering of dirty water. As an example, one of my factories produces extra stone when it makes iron/copper plates. What's the simplest way to configure rail orders/stations/circuits so the stone by-product is always used before the newly mined stone? (All I can think of are Rube gold-burg ideas, so it's time to see what this amazing community can come up with.)
submitted by Botlawson to factorio [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 18:59 ljulima38 [WTS] Mossberg 500 Black Aces Tactical Quad Rail W/ Side Saddle!, Benelli/Beretta Breacher Choke, Low Profile Metal Sights, Also Keltec CP33 Baseplates!

Photos: https://imgur.com/a/dTunJfk
Prices Include Shipping!
PayPal and Venmo F&F Only!
submitted by ljulima38 to GunAccessoriesForSale [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 18:54 jamesom [WTS] LMT 16" MRP-L/MLC Complete Upper // Cloud Defensive COR 10.7" // Scalarworks PEAK // T.Rex Orion Belt // Peltor PTT


LMT 16" Midlength DI Upper + BCG + CH
10.7" Cloud Defensive COR (Cloud Optimized Rail) "v3"
Scalarworks PEAK/01 Fixed Irons Sights
MultiCam T.Rex Arms Orion Belt Set
3M Peltor Push-to-Talk (PTT)
submitted by jamesom to GunAccessoriesForSale [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 18:41 justredditingfofun Beta Builds that I found the best for class - Rogue /Sorc/ Barb

Class Overview
1. Rogue: Inner Sight allows you to fill a gauge by attacking marked enemies, once bar is filled you have unlimited energy for a short period of time.
Best in everything in this game, mobility, stamina and DPS. Can instant phase and kill bosses. Specializing in Shadow skills grant high DPS and offer good defenses, assuming some unique drops easily scales and offers an enjoyable mobile playstyle. Mapping is great, Rouge shines in closed range quick attacks, reset and go again. Vulnerability increases DPS and stun helps against bosses.
  1. Sorceress: three Enchantment slots, periodical use of secondary skill as enchantment for a total of 9 different skills.
Fairly good mobility, high DPS and best defenses / utilities, has some issues with mana generation and requires good positioning. Mapping is smooth, spells cover larger area. Cold Sorceress offers stun, freeze. Build rewards active play, whilst having barriers and teleport as failsafe if ever caught in boss burst.
  1. Barbarian: Weapons gain Experience to level up on hit. Specializing in a weapon means extra damage.
Solid defenses and utility with Challenging Shout and Warcry, somewhat mobile.
Bleed / Thorns based attack build, with great defenses and medium - high DPS.
Barb moves surprisingly well and with a good combo DPS can match Sorceress. Build uses Two-Handed Slashing and Two-Handed Bludgeoning weapon. Requires more build enabling items.
Best Builds
Rogue: Twisting Blades - Shadow imbuement.
Sorc: Frozen Orb, Blizzard Cold Sorceress - Blizzard in Enchantment slot.
Barb: Rend - Iron Maelstrom - Two-Handed weapons.
What are your best builds? Thought on class mechanics?
I found all classes different and enjoyable, once landed on a good build. Have leveled up to 25 with all three and all characters are on full legendary gear.
Unlocked most of the map and killed world boss once so it was a good beta for me, enjoyed and looking forward to play-test further some other builds.
submitted by justredditingfofun to diablo4 [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 18:34 MarineroRon Maria Maria

The final ‘Bloody Mary’ had been invoked. The two friends shouted it at the mirror as they flipped the light switch back on. There was no time for reflection on whether what the two college friends had done was stupid. There was no time for anything at all. For within the mirror a gruesome sight instantly appeared. A malevolent woman stood in an aggressive posture, drenched from head to toe in fresh crimson blood. Her eyes aflame with hatred and teeth sharpened to uneven, jagged points.
“You fucking twats, I’ll claw your eyes out before I cut you to ribbons!”, she screeched as she reached forward through the mirror. Her fingernails long and sharp, ready to make minced meat out of her next two victims.
The two friends recoiled in terror at the unexpected apparition. The lights were now flickering on and off on their own, which only added to the surreal, nightmarish ambience.
Landon reached for the doorknob only to find it frozen shut. They couldn’t escape.
“You’re going to cut us to ribbons?”, Landon asked calmly to the woman in the mirror while his friend Billy stood motionless and in shock.
“Yesss!!! I’ll kill you for summoning me to your worthless home! No one summons me without paying a price. Your death won’t be quick, just like mine wasn’t!”
“Your death wasn’t quick?”, Landon said into the mirror.
“No, it wasn’t quick at all! I had to suffer my final days in excruciating agony. The doctors knew nothing while I left my people abandoned. Not even an heir to proceed me in life!”
Landon didn’t skip a beat. He continued to speak in his calming, low voice, while his friend soiled himself.
“You didn’t even have an heir to proceed you? That must have been so hard. Looks like you really wanted to have a family and never got the chance.”
“You must be hurt and angry…”
“Even us kids summoning you, that must be painful.”
“Yes! I can’t even rest. Each summoning rips me from even the small amount of respite after my lonely existence. I just want to rest!!!”
“Mary, it sounds like we really messed up. We’re so sorry for taking you away from the rest that you deserved after your unfair and unfortunate death.”
Landon waited and held his breath. Billy sat uselessly in the corner of the bathroom as Landon continued to take charge.
“Mary, we can’t apologize enough, me and Billy. We really screwed up and don’t want to disturb you. We just want to get out of here alive so we can leave you in peace. We promise your sleep will never be disturbed by us again…”
Mary hesitated, never having let any victims go previously.
“…. Fine. Be gone! Heed my words closely. Never tempt the forces like this again. Go, live your lives…”
Mary smiled slightly at this final warning.
“Never tempt the forces again. Understood!”, Landon said, smiling to the mirror.
submitted by MarineroRon to shortscarystories [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 18:31 Hendrick_Hiwpol Was anyone's chronic pain caused by an action you took which you play over in your mind day after day?

I am chronically ill (not claiming pain like some of you I am sure but I wanted to hear your stories) now from long covid and I am thrown in to the world of hurt and suffering. I have moved from the land of the healthy to the land of malady.
My life was so on track and everything was going my way. At the end of my 30s it felt like I was finally starting to figure things out then in an instant it has flipped and I am in a living nightmare every day thinking what if I chose differently and continued to be cautious my life would not have been decimated.
There is no end in sight now to my suffering.
I wondered if others had similar situation happen via different means. I would like to hear your tales of woe as it is somewhat therapeutic even though it makes non of us better. It helps to know others arrived at their fucked up situations in a similar fashion.
I honestly just don't know how I will live with myself the rest of my life if nothing changes and having to live with that fucking decision for the rest of my life.
submitted by Hendrick_Hiwpol to ChronicPain [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 18:29 flyinghorseduck 120 Types of Arrows

This arrow is different to others you have used and seems special somehow. Roll a d120 to find out what it does!

Roll Result
1 Arrow of Healing - Deals 1d4 damage, heals 1d8 hp.
2 Arrow of Returning - After firing and striking something, the arrow will vanish in a puff of smoke and return to your quiver.
3 Choke Arrow - When the arrow makes contact with an object, it explodes into a cloud of noxious fumes in a sphere with a radius of 5 feet. Those inside choke as if you had casted the Stinking Cloud spell with DC 12.
4 Arrow of Missile Attraction - on a hit, the target becomes missile attractive. Any missile / projectile that passes within 20ft of the victim has a 2 in 6 chance of being redirected towards the victim.
5 Superior Smoke Arrow - Creates a Fog Cloud after 2 turns.
6 Moss Arrow - When this arrow is fired at a surface, creeping moss rapidly spreads to a circle with radius ten feet around the point of contact. Walking or climbing on the moss grants advantage on stealth checks to remain silent.
7 Sleep Arrow - using sleep powder, it bursts on impacts causing one creature hit to make a con save or fall asleep. No additional damage.
8 Spoil Arrow - on hit you have a horrible taste in your mouth that distracts you from whatever else you were doing to go seek water.
9 Rose Thorn Arrow - on hit extra 1d4 piercing from thorns and target must make a DC 15 STR or DEX save or be ensnared for 1d4 rounds (can attempt to Str / dex to get free each round), 1d4 piercing damage each round the ensnared creature moves.
10 Navigators Shot - upon firing upwards, the arrow travels 80ft upwards before going 50ft towards a goal (find a target or location) the archer is currently seeking. The magic loses effect if it impacts anything before the ascent.
11 Pointy Twig - sold by a goblin traveling merchant, he swears it's an arrow of never-missing. It's actually just a pointy twig.
12 Vampire Teeth Arrow - While not actual vampire teeth, they look pretty close. These arrows deal necrotic damage instead of piercing. The teeth may be recovered after battle to gain the damage dealt with them as healing or temporary HP.
13 Gossip Arrow - on a hit, the archer discovers one mundane secret about the target. (The bandit loves knitting kinda secret) this secret is broadcasted in a 30ft radius by an ethereal voice.
14 Flightstopper Arrow - A creature that is flying or attempting to fly must make a constitution save before using its movement. On failure, it cannot gain altitude and instead drops 60 feet. A flying creature does not take fall damage if it is forced from the sky by the flightstopper arrow. The throw is repeated every time the flying creature tries to use its movement. The effect lasts one minute or until the arrow is removed, whichever comes sooner.
15 Barbed Arrow - This cruelly barbed arrow does normal damage going in, and 1D6+2 damage coming out. If carefully removed (takes 1D6+1 rounds, DEX check at DC 15), no damage; half damage if you fail the roll. If left in, 1 damage per round spent doing anything but remaining carefully still.
16 Arrow of Teleportation - user is teleported to the impact site of the arrow.
17 Arrow of Delay - when fired the arrow freezes in place mid-air, thawing one round later and targeting the original targeted location. In addition to normal damage, on a hit the target is frozen in time for one round, unable to take any actions.
18 Curved Arrow - An arrow with a slight curve in it, used to hit targets behind cover.
19 Haunted Skull-Dread Arrow - Does regular damage. If arrow isn't pulled out by before 3 turns are over, the creature gains either a minor curse from a d100 table, or a disease from a d100 table. If it is a critical hit, then on the first turn the effect activates.
20 Shock Arrow - A thundergem is sharpened into a point as this arrow's head. Upon a hit the brittle gem shatters, releasing an additional 1d8 lightning damage in a 10' radius.
21 Grease Arrow - An alchemist's vial of grease replaces the arrowhead and spreads grease on whatever surface it strikes.
22 Babel Arrow - on hit, this arrow makes you forget the languages you speak and speak languages you didn't beforehand for 1d4 hours.
23 Odor-Seeking Arrow - will automatically hit the smelliest creature or object within 2d120 feet.
24 Flash Bang Arrow - this arrow is tipped with a small grey canister that explodes in a 10 foot radius on impact. Creatures in the blast must make a DC 14 constitution save or be blinded and deafened for 1d4 rounds. The creature may repeat the saving throw at the end of each of his turns.
25 Flare Arrow - creates a flare like projectile. If shot skyward can be seen up to one mile away. Only does 1d4 additional fire damage.
26 Arrow of Ricochet - Considers full cover to be half cover.
27 Light Arrow - These arrows deal radiant damage instead of piercing. They appear to be made out of pure light while emitting none at the same time. They leave a streak in the air, marking their path for up to an hour.
28 Short Jump Arrow - Arrow range is only 30 ft but allows you to teleport to anywhere within the range that it lands.
29 Arrow of Whooshing - makes a sound like someone making the sound of an arrow flying through the air as it flies through the air.
30 Foecrusher Arrow - An arrow with a very large head that is disproportionate to the rest of the arrow’s body, that somehow weighs the same as a normal arrowhead. Upon being fired, the arrow begins to rapidly grow in size over the course of its flight. For every 10 feet the arrow moves, the arrow’s damage increases by 1d6 piercing damage. If the arrow travels at least 100 feet, every creature within a 5 foot radius of the arrows point of impact must make a DC 18 Dexterity saving throw. A creature takes the arrows full damage as bludgeoning damage on a failed save, and half as much damage on a successful save. The damage is done instead of the arrows single target damage, not in addition to it. The radius of the arrows point of impact increases by 5 feet for every additional 100 feet the arrow travels after the initial 100 feet.
31 Whistling arrow - A non-magical arrow with a wiffle ball-like attachment affixed to the shaft behind the point. It makes a shill whistling sound as it travels through the air. Inexpensive.
32 Grappling Arrow - Arrow with a strong head that will hold up to 300 lbs of weight on an attached 100ft length of rope.
33 Drow Ascension Arrow - Touching these arrows bathes the shooter or anything it hits in shadow for 1 hour.
34 Zipper Arrow - Does regular damage, but the when the arrow is ripped out by a PC, it does 4d4 damage. To rip the Arrow out, a PC needs a prerequisite strength of 15. The actual arrow has many small spikes and sharp edges on it, and near the base of the arrow is a large pull handle.
35 Scrying Arrow - It takes a moment to prep the scrying arrow. You look into the foggy glass and your non dominant eye loses sight for a second before reforming inside the glassy bulb. This effect lasts for a minute. This arrow can then be shot.
36 Arrow of Anti-Magic - Arrow dispels all magic spells and effects within 10ft of it's impact.
37 Stalker Arrow - upon impact, this arrow lodges a small magical tracker in its target. The archer now knows the location of the target for 24 hours.
38 Evertrue Arrow - when this arrow is fired, a target will be hit. Maybe not the one you're aiming at, but the arrow will continue to travel across the surface of the plane it was shot on in a random direction that changes every minute until it hits a target.
39 Cannon Arrow - An arrow seemingly made entirely out of metal that is still light enough to be used, faintly glowing runic symbols cover every surface. Upon being fired, the arrow transforms into a cannonball that magically continues following the arrows flight path. A creature that is hit with the cannonball takes 8d10 bludgeoning damage and must succeed on a DC 22 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.
40 Arrow of Illusion - arrow creates an illusion of the archer at the impact site.
41 Injection Arrow - An arrow with a needle on the tip used to inject enemies with poisons and other alchemical brews.
42 Suckerpunch Arrow - Arrows that have a light metal ball instead of a pointed head. Better for knocking out targets with a shot to the head or knocking the wind out of them with a shot to the gut. Incredibly nonlethal.
43 Whisper Arrow - if a message is whispered to the arrow before firing it, a target hit by the arrow will hear the whispered message.
44 Net Arrow - The head of this arrow is actually a small clay pot containing a spring-loaded silk net, on a hit, the target makes a DEX save (DC 13) against being restrained. on it's turn, the target can make a STR check to break free (DC 16).
45 Huntress Arrow - The Goddess of the Hunt blessed this arrow. Hits with the force of a falling Oak tree.
46 Arched Arrow - curved slightly, with air channels engraved onto the tip. When fired, flies in a circle of diameter 60ft in the direction the arrow is curved toward when aiming.
47 Buzzing Arrow - An arrow with a head coated in honey. When it hits a target, a swarm of bees is summoned, centered on the target. The bees are not friendly to the user, but likely won't attack unless provoked.
48 Edible Arrow - this can be shot and break like a normal arrow but is unrecoverable. Otherwise provides the effect of one goodberry with no time spoilage.
49 Skeletal Grasp Arrow - An arrow of bone with a grasping hand on the front. If target is struck, grasping skeletal hands raise up from the ground dealing bludgeoning damage and restraining the target and those caught in the AOE. 5 foot radius.
50 Long Range Arrow - a rare and beautifully crafted arrow, normal range increased by 1d120, maximum range increased by 2d120
51 Shadow Arrows - Arrows exposed to alchemy that allows it to go through an object or person and pierce something else.
52 Arrow of Desperation - Gains a +4 bonus when the archer or one of their companions has less than a quarter HP remaining.
53 Blessed Arrow - does extra 1d4 damage to undead.
54 Moist Arrow - upon impact, any surface in a 10ft cube will immediately be drenched in a thin layer of water.
55 Taser Bolt - upon impact, the target must make a DC 14 constitution saving throw. On a fail, the target is now paralyzed, as if affected by the hold person spell. The saving throw may be repeated at the end of each of the targets turns.
56 Beacon-Seeking Arrow - a person or creature can touch an object and designate it as the beacon. When fired by that person/creature, the arrow will automatically hit the beacon if the beacon is within 2d120 feet.
57 Immovable Arrow - When the arrow hits something it becomes magically fixed in place upon impact until a button near the tip of the arrow is pressed. While fixed the arrow can hold up to 4,000 pounds.
58 Silence Arrow - An arrow with a fog-filled glass pearl instead of an arrowhead. It casts the silence spell in a 20 ft spherical radius lasting for 5 minutes where it strikes.
59 Bluff Arrow - A regular arrow with an extremely persausive letter tied to it.
60 Dryad's Kiss Arrow - Upon a successful hit by this legendary arrow the target is wrapped in vines and dragged into the earth. On a miss the arrow sprouts vines and roots that creates an oasis of permanent plant life and sprouts another arrow every century.
61 Anti-Ballistic Arrow - A thick arrow that has a rounded tip, with fletching that constantly adjusts and readjusts itself. Upon being fired, the arrow seeks out the closest moving projectile that is within 30 feet of any point of the arrow’s flight path. The arrow changes its direction to intercept the moving projectile, and a successful attack roll against an AC of 15 results in the intercepted projectile being knocked out of the air and/or destroyed.
62 Glass-Break Arrow - The arrowhead is high quality ceramic and very lightly touched with enchantment so that it thoroughly shatters glass. Despite being enchanted, detect magic will overlook it most of the time. Inexpensive, but only shops catering to thieves and mischief sell them. Possession may be a crime in some areas.
63 Armor Piercing Arrows - Tipped with special metals that ignore AC, +2 to hit.
64 Glass Tipped Arrow - Either solid or hollow to fill with alchemy items.
65 Mind Spike Arrow - Deals only psychic damage. Target has disadvantage on wisdom saves until next turn. It is pink in colour.
66 Rope Arrow - When fired, this arrow releases 25 feet of hempen rope behind it.
67 Pulling Arrow - can pull 300lbs of weight that is tied to the arrow for 1d100 feet.
68 Heat-Seeking Arrow - will automatically hit the hottest temperature creature or object within 2d120 feet.
69 Acid Arrow - The glass head of this arrow shatters upon impact spraying the target in corrosive acid. On a hit the target takes an additional 1d4 acid damage.
70 Motion-Seeking Arrow - will automatically hit the fastest moving creature or object within 2d120 feet.
71 Noise-Seeking Arrow - will automatically hit the loudest creature or object within 2d120 feet.
72 Thundersteel Arrow - made from meteoric iron which has been imbued with the essence of the sky domain, deals 1d4 lightning damage in addition.
73 Wyrmslayer Arrow - Deals double damage to dragons and like kin.
74 Crescent Moon Arrow - causes slashing damage with it's broad cutting head. Once hit the target it hooks itself in the flesh as the wound closes behind it. Causes bleeding. Not effective against armor. Not effective at long range. Can be used to cut objects further away, like ropes for traps and such.
75 Small Game Broadhead - Broadhead with extending fins that will decapitate small game (CR 1/8 or lower), due to the precision needed, the target gets +5 to AC.
76 Hollow Tipped Arrows - It breaks off inside the victim causing more damage, but are harder to penetrate armor with. -1 to hit, +1d4 damage.
77 Ethereal Arrow - Upon using a command word, this arrow shifts between the material and ethereal plane. Can be used to shoot through allies without harming them or to shoot through covers.
78 Tracer Arrow - Glows when fired so you can see the arc of the arrow and where it lands. Inexpensive.
79 Screamer Arrow - A transparent, fragile arrowhead filled with volatile sonic energy causes this arrow to mildly vibrate at all times. On a hit, the arrowhead shatters and releases a ear shattering scream. Instead of dealing traditional damage, all creatures within a 30 foot radius of the arrows point of impact must make a Constitution saving throw. A creature takes take 2d8 thunder damage on a failed save, and half as much damage on a successful one. A creature made of inorganic material such as stone or metal has disadvantage on this saving throw. Any nonmagical objects that aren’t being worn or carried also take the damage if they are in the radius.
80 Arrow of the Feywar - Upon a successful hit transports the victim to another point nearby or another point on the nearest continent (flip a coin to decide).
81 Cold-Seeking Arrow - will automatically hit the coldest temperature creature or object within 2d120 feet.
82 Tipsy Arrow - on successful hit target is impaired as if drunk for 1d4 minutes. (disadvantage on attacks)
83 Arrow of Blinding - as it impacts the target, it explodes in a flash of light rendering everyone who was not averting their eyes blinded for 1d4 rounds.
84 Water Arrow - When this arrow makes contact, it releases a burst of water that extinguishes any source of fire no greater than a five foot cube. Elementals attuned to fire are weak against it's damage.
85 Non-lethal Arrow (blunt head) - does blunt instead of piercing damage.
86 Arrow of Spiders - When the arrow impacts it releases hundreds of spiders. The spiders are harmless but a creature they are crawling on must succeed a DC 20 constitution check or use their next action to brush off the spiders.
87 Boxing Glove Arrow - Stuns an enemy or knocks them prone on hit.
88 Invisibility Arrow - on hit, target vanishes for a whole 1d12 minutes.
89 Ice Arrow - A shard of razor sharp ever-frozen ice is fastened to the end of an arrow. A hit from an Ice Arrow causes the area surrounding the wound to freeze for 1d4 hours.
90 Arrow of Monster Attraction - Any target hit by this arrow will attract any monster within 200ft. Monsters (with below human int) will treat the person or creature hit by this arrow as hostile. If arrow hits an inanimate object or the ground, any monster (with below human int) drawn to it will treat everyone in the area as hostile.
91 Blight Arrow - A sinister looking arrow made from a dark wood that seems to pulse with life. On a hit, the wooden shaft of the arrow wiggles and writhes its way into the body of the target dealing an additional 1d4 damage on the hit and at the start of each of the target’s turns thereafter until the wood is removed with magical restoration or a successful DC 16 Medicine check. If the shaft still remains inside the target’s body when the target dies, 1d3 twig blights burst forth from the target’s body 2d4 rounds after the creature’s death. The twig blights are hostile to all creatures other than each other, and attack nearby creatures until they die or there are no creatures left to attack, at which point they go off in search of more victims.
92 Black Arrow - Dwarven-made it is ancient and capable of piercing dragon hide.
93 Arrow of Agitation - on a successful hit, the target experiences varying nervous agitation, which affects to hit rolls and any bonuses to AC for Dex. Roll a d4, and subtract that number on to hit rolls and Dex-based AC. The effect lasts for 6-8 rounds.
94 Alchemists Fire Arrow - contains a small vial of alchemists fire, dealing an additional 1d4 fire damage.
95 Sentient Arrow - The arrow is actually a living organism shaped like an arrow. Its head is the arrow head. When drawing blood it sprouts its thin limbs and begins trying to inject itself inside its target host. The initial strike does damage and the target must succeed a constitution saving throw or else the creature will successfully dive into the host. While, it will deal 1d4 damage per turn and the host can feel the creature moving around inside.
96 Trickstrike Arrow - The arrow teleports midfiring so that it appears to have been fired from a direction of the attacker's choosing instead. The accuracy is the same as a normal arrow.
97 Cupid's Lust - these pair of arrows switch the minds of the targets for 24 hours when struck with the tip.
98 Arrows of the Wraith - Ethereal arrow tips don't hurt most creatures but is devastating to ghosts and other spirits.
99 Quiver Mother Arrow - As long as this arrow is in your quiver it makes 15 arrows per day.
100 Blurry Arrow - blurs vision for 1d20 minutes.
101 Vampire Arrow - An arrow made from bone that appears to be covered in dozens of tiny holes near its tip. On a hit, a vampire arrow begins rapidly draining blood from the target’s body, causing them to take 1d6 necrotic damage at the start of the target’s turn until the head of arrow is removed from the body. These additional effects do not occur if the target has no blood or similar essential body fluid.
102 Binding Arrow - Designed to explode on contact with a sticky goo that hardens almost instantly, DC 15 strength check to break. Can be used to stop or hinder movement.
103 Grapple Hook Arrow - does not do standard damage. Can be used as a standard grapple hook as well as an attempt to attach it to a target.
104 Smokescreen Arrow - Tipped with a smokebomb. Causes a cloud of smoke that obstructs vision for 1d4-1 rounds, moves 10ft in the direction of the wind every turn.
105 Deadweight Arrow - Once its stabbed into a surface, the target's weight increases to 50 pounds.
106 Scorpion Arrow - Does an additional 1d4 poison damage.
107 Splitting Arrow - An arrow that splits into 3 separate arrows mid-flight. There are rarer versions that split into 5 and even 7.
108 Assassin's Arrow - immediately upon striking the target the arrow vanishes, leaving no trace of the arrow behind and making the source of the wound unclear.
109 Jagged Arrow - When it hit's a target, it does 1d4 piercing damage every 12 seconds (2 turns) until removed by a medicine check of 15+.
110 Compass Arrow - Ordinary when fired but swivels to point north when balanced on a finger.
111 Light-Seeking Arrow - will automatically hit the brightest creature or object within 2d120 feet.
112 Meteor Shower Arrow - A Pure black arrow that marks a target for a meteor shower. Meteors are summoned and take 1 turn to arrive. After 1 turn a shower of massive flaming meteors rain down on the target dealing LOTS of fire and bludgeoning damage. 15 foot radius.
113 Torch Arrow: After being shot and embedding itself in some surface this arrow burns for 1 hour lighting a 20-foot radius with bright light and providing dim light for another 20 feet.
Initial list built by d100. See it here.
List Contributors: u/dndspeak, u/Gentleman_Viking, u/Gnazax, u/hongan_os, u/Wartoaster, u/Cheibrodos, u/pjk922, u/baconexperience, u/PapaBear221b, u/sonofabutch, u/Helix1322, u/FatalBurnz, u/Trantorius, u/Hwga_lurker_tw, u/2604, u/kysnou_, u/themasonking, u/Jehovahs_attorney, u/DMerald, u/FTLOG_IAMDAVE, u/sacros003, u/no4u, u/World_of_Ideas, u/ThePragmaticPimp, u/CountofAccount, u/Silverdragon701, u/ed57ve, u/calrinet, u/Courtholomew, u/yiorgiom, u/ChristyPaladin, u/ALegitimateName, u/r3dj4ck0425, u/FlyingHorseduck
submitted by flyinghorseduck to d120Lists [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 18:29 ThrowRAasdfgh432 I (19m) broke up with my girlfriend (19f) and I fucked up, bad

this is a long post but i would be so so grateful if i could get some advice from people a lot more mature than me
about a month ago, I sat my girlfriend of 1yr4months down and suggested we instead transition to friends because our relationship was failing and she agreed it was for the best - we both kinda knew it was coming and I decided I should probably just get it done with instead of dragging out the relationship and festering negative emotions towards each other.
I decided on this because she wasn’t giving me a lot of love, she was being negative all the time and our sex life was just non existent, it just didn’t feel like I was dating anyone. So we have since then continued on as friends and neither of us really had an issue with it. But given i’m 19, im young and really stupid and i’m growing a lot - ive been trying these past couple years to reflect on my actions and be the best version of myself I can be, and i think I might have made the biggest mistake i’ve ever made and fumbled the best thing to have happened to me.
some important history into our relationship - in this context, there were three main stages: the honeymoon phase, my P.O.S phase and my narcissistic phase.
the honeymoon phase was about what you’d expect: we met when we were 17, we really clicked, she asked me out on my 18th birthday and for a couple months things were great. she was the sweetest girl ever and we were feeling each other out.
but then came the P.O.S aka the piece of shit phase. this is really hard to talk about because I am absolutely humiliated by who I was back then, but i really deserve to answer for the person i was. I feel so terrible for anyone around me because I was just a complete, needless dick. I had some really bad friends at the time and everything was just a dick measuring contest and constant insults. I was mentally at a real low and I didn’t even know why, but looking back I can see it was because I hated who I was and what I was doing, I wasn’t being genuine to myself but I couldn’t connect those dots.
unfortunately for both her and me, my behaviour rubbed off on my girlfriend and I did some god awful things to her. I constantly ridiculed her in front of my friends, I would act like I didn’t care about her, I was manipulative of her emotions purely for my entertainment, I was being way too rough with her and when sex started becoming less frequent, I made her feel guilty for it and really pushed her for it. I was about as undateable and toxic as you could get, but she stuck with me through it all.
I was very slowly realising the person I was becoming and I moved on from that friend group and we talked a lot about the way I treated her and the specific things I did. I was very out of touch with my emotions and I felt absolutely horrendously terrible for the things I did, but only about half the time we talked did I actually own up and apologise. the other half, I just either wallowed in self pity and self deprecated terribly or got really frustrated with her and asked why she would bring this up when i’ve changed from being that person. understandably, she only got partial closure, but I did manage to really overhaul my character and didn’t do anything to her again since then to the same scale.
the next phase is the narcissistic phase, and I call it that because the main issue with me at this time was that I just could not stop thinking about myself. admittedly, I was going through a super super tough time from the start of this phase all the way up until we broke up. I developed a chronic stomach illness, which flipped my life on its head.
my girlfriend had inherited a beach house and we both decided to temporarily move in together so that we could escape shitty parental situations and we could work on this together. the first month of healing I was incredibly sick and unable to move off the couch most days, and I grew very used to being completely cared for by my girlfriend. I cooked and cleaned sometimes but she carried most the weight around the house, on top of uni and on top of dealing with the inheritance of the house (an absolute nightmare for her financially).
I stayed on my ass doing practically nothing with her chore wise or relationship wise, and I complained that she wasn’t investing enough time into me. she would then complain to me about my lack of help or about some other things I had done in the past which would make me very angry and i’d say she was ignoring me (very ironic).
we really drifted apart from each other and towards the end, we were arguing a lot and we hadn’t had sex in months, we had different sleep schedules and she had uni and a lot of other stuff going on so we didn’t talk much either. this was where we broke up.
this past weekend, she invited me and a bunch of my friends up to the beach house. it was nice but I felt a lot of pain in my stomach seeing her super happy and hanging out with everyone and I didn’t know why, so the day after, I decided to clean up the entire house to save her the cleaning. while I did this I just thought about everything, and I felt worse and worse as I ruminated deeper about our relationship. we didn’t end because she didn’t care as much about the relationship as I did, we ended because I was an utter garbage human being and I didn’t show her the respect she deserved and I never stopped thinking about myself. I started to look at everything I did through her shoes and I was just disgusted with myself.
after i was finished cleaning, I sat in the bathroom and wrote up a huge message for her in my notes. when she came back, I sat her down, swallowed my pride, wore my heart on my sleeve and I apologised so, so, so deeply about absolutely everything I could fit into the notes. She was incredibly happy to hear this and we had a really good talk, and hugged it out afterwards.
I asked if she thought it was possible we could date again one day in the future (and i completely understand if she doesn’t wanna look at me) and she said she isn’t sure, that she doesn’t want to date anyone right now but she wants me in her life no matter what happens. I told her that’s completely okay and she has full control over everything that happens between us.
my current plan is to try and be as good a friend to her as I possibly can and to give her whatever space she needs, while also being there for her if she ever asks. i’m going to try my hardest to make things right even if we can’t date and I don’t want to put any pressure on her dating-wise. the difficult thing is, realising i’m not the victim and she’s not a bad person has made me fall completely in love with the same girl I fell in love with over a year ago. i’m terrified of thinking that she may never have feelings for me again and I really want to rekindle us and start from scratch, because we were absolutely perfect for each other before I fucked it up - my family loves her, my friends like her, we had such good chemistry. is it possible that I haven’t completely fumbled this? what’s the best way to go about things?
tl;dr broke up with my girlfriend because she was a negative nancy and didn’t care about me as much as I cared about her. turns out though, I was just a complete shithead to her and ruined our relationship, and need help
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2023.03.20 18:21 Fitzbonnamel Doom Eternal (NSW) LRG Update

Doom Eternal (NSW) LRG Update
Just got this email from Limited Run Games (LRG) and thought it might be useful to others.
What’s up, Doomslayers? We’ve got some hellishly good news to share about DOOM Eternal, so strap in and read on to find out when your order will be ready.
Final proofing is underway before manufacturing, so the Switch carts will begin printing very soon. Shipment of the Standard Editions will commence in Q2 2023, a little past the Q1 date we had initially estimated, but only by a few weeks.
STEELBOOK EDITION The SteelBooks have arrived in our warehouse! Once the Standard Editions are in hand, we’ll send them to our assembler alongside the slipcase. We expect them to follow after the Standard Editions ship in Q2 2023, a little ahead of our original completion date. That date may slip back into Q3, but we’ll check in again in June.
SPECIAL EDITION We’re still waiting on the extra Special Edition components included in this collection, which are currently being manufactured. However, no delays are in sight, so we still think we will hit the original estimated finish of Q3 2023, right around the 8-9 month mark post-pre-orders ending.
ULTIMATE EDITION The Ultimate Edition of DOOM Eternal is our most epic DOOM collector’s edition ever made, and as such, it will take time to get it done. Though we initially hoped it would finish in Q3 2023, our production team estimates that it will take until Q4 2023 for this collection to come together.
However, we’ll be with you every step of the way on this one, with new DOOM Eternal updates every three months until it arrives at your doorstep!
MERCH We love helmets here at Limited Run, and we just got the DOOM Eternal Phobos helmets hot off the press!
You can find the switch for those super cool lights (and the battery compartment) behind the removable mouthpiece at the front of the helmet. Give it a flip and watch it glow. Now that’s the ambiance you need to raze hell!
We’ll start shipping these helmets to those who purchased them individually ASAP.
At the time time, we also got those wicked DOOM Eternal skate decks in stock. It’s the same deal. They’ll be going out in standalone orders in the next few weeks, and we’ll hold the rest for those who bundled theirs with games.
Our last two merch items, the trading card set and the t-shirt, are still in production. We estimate that these will finish up in Q2 2023.
We’ll be back in June 2023 with more DOOM Eternal Updates. Until then, follow us @limitedrungames on social media or subscribe to our newsletter for more updates. And if you need help, reach out to our support team. They’ll be happy to assist!.
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2023.03.20 18:20 Necrolancer96 Summoning Kobolds At Midnight: A Tale of Suburbia & Sorcery. 52

Chapter LII

Somewhere, West Virginia, USA.

It was late when Molly closed up shop. One of the only pawn shops in Somewhere meant she had constant business. Though that was going to dry up soon. With the mine closing people were panicking and most were either going to try and whether the storm, or were selling anything of value so they can get out of dodge.

More the former than the latter. The townsfolk were stubborn and weren't going to give up so easy. Though the thought of leaving crossed her mind as well it was a pipe dream. She barely had enough to keep the shop running let alone up and pack to God knows where!

She walked towards the iron bar door. It was always a good investment to keep your valuables secured, especially a pawn shop. It was more for sound of mind than actual security, Somewhere had a negligible crime rate. WAS being the word. With the spike in crime lately from gangs of sick bums running around it was better safe than sorry!

She didn't think a bunch of bums would cause so much trouble. But for days now she's seen on the local news of them causing havoc in the denser part of town. The news wasn't sure they were orphaned kids or just really short people. But every time they showed up was the same picture. The little devils would ambush people in the dead of night in the darker areas. Most of the time people could fight them off and be fine save for some missing bits of jewelry.

But sometimes they weren't so lucky. Already a handful of people have died from being attacked, and they weren't pretty. The green bastards were brutal! She didn't pay much attention when that Duval came by "asking" for protection money. But maybe he had a point. The police force was nothing but a skeleton crew of the sheriff and his 2 deputies. He's been scrambling to get more badges on the ground but that's been less than successful. She's seen maybe 2 other cops out on the streets since and they looked more like someone with the family rifle was given a badge rather than a trained cop.

She didn't like the Duvals, almost the whole town didn't, but if her choice is putting her faith in the middling law enforcement or whatever shallow promise of "protection" the Duval gave, she'd probably just settle with holing herself up in the shop!

Molly yawned as she went to lock up the iron door. Her key didn't enter the lock before the iron door was pushed open and she fell down! She scrambled towards her purse, and the snub-nose inside, but was stopped when a ugly, beady yellow eyed, green face leered at her. She abandoned her purse and scrambled back. Five of the green bums were now in her shop!

"Get out! All of you! I ain't buyin' whatever goods you stole!" She yelled. But from the looks on their ugly bumpy faces they weren't looking to sell her anything.

One of them hissed and advanced on her with a couple others while the rest spread out and began to trash her store! She backed up and grabbed a 9-iron and held it out menacingly at the intruders.
"Last chance you fucks!"

They hissed at her before charging her with a shrill yell. She swung her golf club and dinged one in the head, knocking him out cold. She brought it back around and clipped one of the others. But she was too slow for the 3rd as he lunged for her!

She screamed as she fell backwards. Her and the green intruder struggling for ownership of the golf club. In the background she could hear her shop getting looted and ransacked by the others! Even if she survived intact it would cost whatever she had left to replace everything!

She brought her head forward and butted the intruder in the face. Breaking his large nose with a wet crack as he fell back from the impact. She scrambled up and brought the 9-iron down on the green thief until he stopped moving. She looked up at the rest of the intruders. Which were now many more! She saw the iron door still open and several others wander in!

She threw her weapon at one of them on the glass counter, earning a yelp of pain from the verdant invader, and dived for her purse and pulled out the 38! As it cleared her purse opening however one of the invaders grabbed the revolver. She and him struggled to get possession of the firearm. She didn't dare pull the headbutt off again as the snub barrel of the gun was being pushed towards her.

The green burglar chuckled as he pushed the gun closer and closer to her face. The others had stopped their looting to watch and cheer on their fellow ner-do-well. This was it, she thought, at least it was going down fighting.

Then a cry came as several uniformed men stormed inside and met the invaders in combat. Though that was putting it lightly as they buckled from the charge. Most met their ends the second the uniformed men brought down their clubs. While others just outright fled from them! The only one that didn't was the one she was struggling with. He seemed hellbent on finishing her off!

"You! Wretch! 'Ow dare you!" Came a slightly deep voice from one of the uniformed men as he marched over and grabbed the invader by the back of the neck and wrenching him, and her gun, away from her.

The little green man yelled and screamed and begged them to spare him. Pleas that went unheard as he was thrown onto the ground and met his swift end as a booted heel connected with the back of his skull!

The others faired little better as they were either clubbed to death or were dragged kicking and screaming outside, screaming which were promptly cut off. The one that saved her marched over to her and offered a hand to help her up, which she gladly accepted.

She looked up into the face of the man that saved her, but had to look down instead as she realized that all of the uniformed men were shorter than she was! Not short like the green bums were, but still enough that it threw her off guard. She wasn't tall by any means, just about 5'5 but even they just barely came to her chest in height.

She looked down at the face of the man who saved her.
"Thanks for the help."

The man, who's skin was a tannish color and whos eyes were a striking orange, spoke to her in some kind of broken English with a slight French accent.
"Da Boss sent us!"


"Das right! Misstah Duval!"

Hmph, maybe he wasn't full of shit after all, Molly thought as she took in the sight of the short men, they all wore some kind of military uniform. But none she could recognize.

"Well, tell your Boss that he has my thanks. But I didn't pay for his protection."

"Not YET! We wuz nearby when dis 'appened, but wot about next?" The man asked as he gestured around at the shop.

Damnit, he was right, she thought. As loath as she was to give credit to that Duval he was right. She got lucky tonight, and only just. So she'll pay for this "protection". For now.

"Fine." She said simply as she marched to the register and pulled out a few 50s, unaware the other Red Caps were pocketing bits of cloth, bronze, copper. Stuff that they needed to keep their numbers supplied. Plus a couple weapons that "vanished during the chaos".

She put the cash in the man's awaiting hand.
"How do I know that this isn't just a load of bull?"

He gestured for her to follow, which she did, after closing up the shop once it was clear. He lead her around the side of the building to the front. Where she found the hanging corpses of the green intruders hanging from her store sign and the nearby lamppost.

If this was a con, then they were doing their damndest to sell it. Then again, they can't extort money from dead bodies.
"Alright fine. So how will this work?"

"A cuple boys will stay outside da shop. Noight 'nd day! Make shur dat da wretches don't come bak! Next week I comes bak ta collect!" He stated simply.

"Fair enough. They aren't goin' to bother me or my customers will they?"

"Nope, dey stays outside. De'll only com in if you or aye says so!"

"Alright, then I'll see you lot tomorrow then?" She asked and left when the man gave her a nod in confirmation. She climbed up the stairs on the side of her building and went inside to her home above the shop. She didn't breathe easy until all 4 locks on her door were set and she fell onto her couch with a sigh of relief.

The Headman watched the human woman leave. After which he stationed two guards on the shop. One on the shop door and another at the bottom of the stairs to the human's home. They can't get paid if their dead, and the boss wouldn't like it either. Not only that, if someone they were charged with protecting died under their watch then it was an insult to their image! If they died to these pathetic goblins then even more so!

The Headman and his retinue marched back to base. As they did he made a brief stop at the various places under their protection. The bodies of goblins, both those that they sent to scare them into being more willing to accept their protection as well as the rogue goblins, hung from various poles.

They were the ones that fled every which way when the mine was assaulted by those creatures in the dark. Some fled into the wilderness, he wasn't sure if they survived or not, and some fled into the town. It would seem they've taken a liking to the urban environment and have more or less taken complete control of the general crime of the denser part of the town.

Out of the corner of his eyes he could see the odd goblin crawl through the darkness. They were a trivial issue to the Red Caps, but for the humans of the town? They were a growing threat, and the events of the night proved that local human guards weren't capable to deal with them. But that was good for the Boss and the Red Caps. It just meant that there was a threat that they needed protection from. THEIR protection. Protection that they would willingly, though maybe not happily, pay for!

The Boss wanted the money, but said that they could claim anything they needed for supplies, as long as it wasn't outright robbery he didn't care. Some were even content to pay them with "garbage" and "junk", but for the Red Caps? It was well needed supplies for their growing numbers!

While the Red Caps were growing slowly, the goblins numbers continued to explode. Which meant that they were running out of room to house the worthless creatures! When asked about this the Boss had the idea of using goblins to scare the residents! Then all the Red Caps had to do was march in and kill them! What did the Boss say? Two birds one stone? The Headman wasn't sure what that had to do with anything but he wasn't going to argue that it worked!

"Roight yew lot! 'And ovah yer shiney... bits?" A shrill voice came as a single goblin jumped out and held a crude shiv towards the Red Caps. The look on the Red Caps were unamused though at the presumptuous goblin. He chuckled and dropped the shiv and made for the nearby alley. But didn't get far before one of the Red Caps grabbed his thin leg and dragged him back into the light of the lamppost.

The Red Cap thrashed him against the sidewalk repeatedly, ignoring the cries of pain and protest. Which silenced with one last smash against the concrete. The group just gave a disinterested sniff and marched on. Leaving the bloody, twitching corpse of the goblin to get picked over by scavengers.

The Headman and the others nodded as the guards of the manor let them through. The rest of them went to the officers hall while the Headman marched upstairs towards Morty's office. He rapped three times before entering. He saw Morty going over documents on his desk, a lamp illuminated it and a glass of fine bourbon sat nearby, a glass decanter sitting next to it for easy refill.

"How did it go?" Morty asked as he continued his painstakingly annoying accounting.

"All went accordin' to plan Boss!"

"Good! And payment?"

The Headman marched over and deposited several wads of bills and change on the desk. Not much for now, but that'll change once they start occupying more of the town. Before long the town will be paying him and his army taxes instead of that fat fuck and the other rolling balls of lard!

He did a quick count and added the amount to the books.
"Good. Anything else to report?"

"No Boss!"

"Alright then! Goodnight, Colonel!" Morty said and gave a mock salute.

Though Morty was joking, the Headman took it very serious! He had a rank! A PROPER rank! Not just a general title to differentiate him from the rest but an actual rank of authority! He had somewhat authority because of his closeness to the Boss. But now he had an ACTUAL rank he can call and display with pride! Like the ones in the books of Nap Lion! If he was Colonel then that meant that the boss was his General!

The Hea-COLONEL saluted his superior briskly.
"Goodnoight. General!"

Morty returned the salute as the Colonel marched back to his quarters. No doubt to begin taking his new, official, role with vigor. Morty returned to his accounting but paused as he chuckled.

He was kinda playing general for fun. But with how the rest of the army was forming maybe he should start taking it more seriously. Maybe he can get a replica of Napoleon's outfit to wear while he inspects the troops. He barked at the thought of lines of formations as his Red Caps marched through town with him on a horse at their head!
He turned towards a mirror in the corner and posed like Napoleon did.
"Le Petit Corporal? Non! Le Petit Roi! Le Petit Empereur!" Morty chuckled and sat back down. But he couldn't help but glance back at the mirror now and then.
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2023.03.20 18:05 Bubzoluck [15 min read] The Hunt for Red Corona - The Russian Flu of 1890 was likely a COVID 1.0!

[15 min read] The Hunt for Red Corona - The Russian Flu of 1890 was likely a COVID 1.0!
Hello and welcome back to SAR! Much like the groundhog poking its head out of its burrough, the world is starting to wake up from the dark cloud that was COVID-19. Now this isn’t to say that COVID is gone, SARS and MERS from earlier in this century prove that the Corona Virus is a fact of our lives, but I do think that the worst is over. BUT before people start to click off this post because I dare to say the C-word, today I want to talk about an epidemic that has fallen to the wayside of history: the 1889-1890 Pandemic. Also called the Asiatic Flu or the Russian Flu this was a respiratory viral pandemic that struck the Russian Empire before being transported globally via newly established railroads and steamships. Despite being the first true global pandemic, we don’t really remember this blip of history and the question is: why? Well today we shall explore this forgotten disease and answer the question that wasn’t in your mind at all, there is a COVID-OC43?

Exit, Pursued by a Bear

+2 extra credit points for anyone who knows what this section title references. Before we can talk about the pandemic we have to talk about what was going on in 1890. At this point in time the world was engrossed in what is considered the second Industrial Revolution, also called the Technological Revolution, this period began in 1870 due to the discovery of great synergies. Firstly, the invention of the Blast Furnace by Scottish James Neilson allowed for iron to be heated at higher temps and being tempered with coal in a more efficient manner thus leading to an increased production of Steel. The use and manipulation of Steel cannot be understated—cheap Steel allowed for building larger bridges and skyscrapers, opened up the agricultural sector by providing more robust steam-driven farm equipment to feed the burgeoning industrial working class, built the next standard for war equipment, and most importantly for our story, laid the foundation of rail and steamship transport. The use of rail cannot be understated either: a railway could turn the week long trip from Scotland highlands to London into a day affair (albeit a long one). This ability to transport people or cargo in a day when it would take upwards of a week at times is what changed the idea of distance and made the world much much smaller. Afterall, nowadays if it takes 6 hours to drive somewhere far away we think what a long trip, while in 1810 a 6 hour trip might have been just to get to the next village over.

  • We call this temporal shortening of distance Globalization and the end of the 19th century represented the first hard step in that effort. Looking at the graph we can see that over the 60 years that rail development took off, rail development was the driving force behind Globalization. A quick look at the rail maps of the German Empire in 1840 vs 1880 shows that having a rail line close to your city or port was crucial for the economic (and defense) of the country. Russia…is a different story or rather an even bigger story. Much bigger.

  • If you are unaware the Russian Empire was HUGE; at its peak it covered 22.8 MILLION square miles and is the third largest empire in history (after the British Empire and the Mongol Empire). For much of its history, upwards of 80% of the population of Russia lived west of the Ural Mountains in what is called European Russia. But with that area of Russia being occupied densely for thousands of years, most of the natural resources were extracted from Siberia while farming was extracted from the Chernozem region (modern day Ukraine and Kazakhstan). So in order for food or raw materials to be shipped from the outer edges of the empire into the heartland, it would have to cover upwards of one thousand kilometers. Before rail, this was a 2 week journey and all the while you are racing against the clock so the food doesn’t spoil before it gets to the markets in the middle of St. Petersburg.
    • Up until the creation of the railroad, like most civilizations, trade was done via rivers and luckily the Volga River runs north-south straight through the middle of European Russia. Despite this centrally located river traversing the upper portions of the river were frozen for 6-7 months per year making it basically useless for transferring cargo. Peter the Great built the Vyshnii Volochek System, an extensive canal system, that linked the newly created St. Petersburg with the old capital of Moscow in 1709. Although the canals improved travel it still took 3 months to travel from Moscow and St. Petersburg. To go from Astrakhan on the Black Sea up to St. Petersburg (traversing the entire length of European Russia) was a notable 2 year trip. One way.
    • Well why not roads? Well Russia at the time was known for very wet soils that made roads extremely muddy and dangerous. In fact, the best time to traverse by road was during the winter when the mud was frozen but this added the danger of trying to transport people and animals in the sub-zero temperatures. Alexander I laid the first real roads in 1817 between Moscow and St. Petersburg which was finished in 1834. If weather held, a small cart could make the trip between the two cities in 10 days but the road was small and could only really allow for small non bulky goods to be moved. The true time was closer to 70 days. In response to this Nicholas I founded a committee to study plans for road development in 1833 that would be studied and funded by central, provincial, and local authorities so all roads in Russia were improved slowly but surely. Despite the good intention, the plan failed due to a lack of funds, engineers, and labor.
  • Despite the problems with river and road transport, Russian leaders were hesitant to embrace the railroad. Minister of Finance Count Kankrin and Minister of Ways and Communication Count K F Toll believed that money should be spent improving the agricultural sector rather than building these large and expensive machines and rail systems (completely looking over the fact that there was plenty of food it just couldn’t be transported quick enough). The first railroad would then be privately sponsored for mining and would instantly prove their usefulness over horse and cart. In just 15 years the cost of the railroad would be paid for. In response to this the Russian Government believed that private industry should take the financial risk rather than embracing the technology.
  • On January 6, 1835 Austrian engineer Franz Anton von Gerstner sent a letter to Nicholas I and proposed an extensive Russian railway system. Von Gerstner was probably the most qualified person in Europe due to being the first person to build a railway on continental Europe (Danube-Moldavia line) and he provided statistics about the usefulness of rail. Probably the most important of which was the English’s ability to suppress Irish disorder quickly with easy troop movements. The first line to be completed was between Moscow and Tsarskoe Selo in 1836, with a new St. Petersburg-Moscow line in 1851. With great attribution to the Crimean War (1853-1856), the total amount of rail would increase from 5000km in 1860 to over 53,200km in 1899.

  • Probably most important among these railways was the Trans-Siberian Railway started by Tsar Nicholas II in 1891. Starting in Moscow in the West, this railroad would stretch 9,289km (5,772mi) to its terminus at Vladivostok in the East. To put this in perspective,if you were standing in San Francisco and boarded a train, the final destination would be Spain, yeah you’d go over the Atlantic Ocean. That’s how long this thing is! Despite being the largest province in the country, Siberia represented the least developed part of the country mostly due to its vastness and inability to traverse laterally. Several rivers flow through the region but are untraversable except for 5 months of the year due to freezing over. Walking the distance could take upwards of a year but once the railway was completed it took a mere 7 days. That’s nuts!

Wow you really love trains don't you?

Well… not really i'm pretty indifferent to them but they are fairly important to the beginning of our story! Close your eyes and imagine it is 1889 in the city of Bukhara in modern day Uzbekistan. Bukhara is an ancient city, probably founded sometime in the 6th century BC, the Bukhara region was a regional capital for the Persian Empire when it reigned in this area. Bukhara remained a servant to the dominant empire of the region for the majority of its history and following the invasion of Russia into Iran in 1804, Bukhara once again shifted hands into the Russian Empire. By May 1889 the city was like any other bustling regional power in the late 19th century: merchants hustled their products to passerbys, children played in the street kicking an air filled sheep’s bladder, and doctors made house calls. One doctor, Oskar Heyfelder, was working one warm May day going from house to house when he encountered a sickly old matron of a large family. She was dying—a respiratory influenza had taken hold of her and she was quickly fading. The doctor stood over the old woman with his hat in his hand and recommend opium and a priest. There was nothing more he could do.

  • Little did Heyfelder know but he had just encountered one of the first people to be infected in the 1889 pandemic and the disease would spread quickly via—you guessed it—railroad. See back in 1879 a new Trans-Caspian Railway was built along an old Silk Road corridor which would have bypassed Bukhara entirely. That is if it wasn’t for the last Emir of Bukhara Muhammad Alim Khan (1880-1944) who was unhappy with the nearest station being dozens of miles away in Kagan so he built a private spur to Bukhara itself. With the rail connection established the disease spread quickly up the railway into Russia and then exported to the rest of the world over weeks. I found a great map from a 1892 book published on the Russian Flu that shows the spread of disease by coloring the map. [In case it's hard to read, go to the link and then page 218 of the pdf].

The Butler Weekly Times, Butler MO, Jan 1 1890
  • From the first cases reported in Bukhara, Russian Flu would travel up to Tomks in Western Siberia, Ufa (100 km east of Moscow), Kazan (700 km east of Moscow), Ukraine, and Novgorod (near St. Petersburg) by October of 1889. By November Moscow was hit with 20,000 cases alone which crippled the growing worker’s population and grinded production to a halt. Somewhere between 25-50% of soldiers and students were taken ill which added an extra burden on families. Mid-November saw 180,000 of the one million citizens of St. Petersburg infected. The bread-basket of the Russian Empire was struck next when Kiev and the rest of Ukraine fell to the disease although luckily it hit after the Autumn harvest had already come in.
  • Once established in Russian the disease was able to spread out of the motherland to other regions. Via St. Petersburg the infection hopped aboard Baltic ships and was exported to Finland, Sweden, Germany, and Denmark. In Sweden up to 60% of the population would be infected within 2 months of the Flu landing. As a major trading hub, Posen had an extensive rail network that allowed for the Flu to move throughout Germany infecting half of the 1.5 million residents of Berlin. Vienna and Rome got it by early December; Paris by Christmas; Spain in January where up to 300 people died a day in Madrid alone. London, Birmingham, Glasgow, and Dublin took a punch by Christmas as well.

  • Remember that this is the age of small Earth where globalization has made a trip across the Atlantic as short as 7 days. Russian Flu entered Boston and New York City on December 18th, 1889 before being sent West towards Chicago and San Francisco (who would particularly be hit bad). Once in the United States it would spread north to Montreal and south to Mexico and the rest of South America. By February the disease reached East via the Dutch trading companies and spread liberally among the South East Asian population. Japan, Australia, and New Zealand all caught it in April; China in May.

The Deadly Disease Wasn’t That Deadly

Now if it feels like I’m leaving something important out, that's because I am. Usually when you talk about pandemics we talk about how quickly it spread and then the death toll. All told, the pandemic killed about 1 million people worldwide—now don’t get me wrong this is an enormous loss of life and its unfortunate that these people died but in the grand scheme of things it just wasn’t that deadly. During this same period, a global Cholera pandemic was going on which killed at least 4 million people, Russian Typhus Epidemic in 1919 killed 3 million, and in 1918 the Spanish Flu would devastate the globe with somewhere between 17 and 100 million people dead. That being said, some important people did catch the disease: future King Edward VII of England nearly died before his mother, Queen Victoria, left the throne, although many suspect that his catching this disease ultimately led to his death in 1910. His son Prince Albert Victor, the grandson of Queen Victoria and 2nd in line for the throne, caught it in January of 1892 and died at the age of 28 making way for Queen Elizabeth II to eventually be crowned. Augusta, Queen Empress consort to Emperor Wilhelm I of Germany fell ill in 1890 and died within 4 months. Alexander III of Russia managed to just survive the condition which prompted him to make major public health changes in St. Petersburg. I could go on.

  • So what even happened then? It would start with typical cold symptoms: sweating, fever and chills, sneezing, watery eyes, and dry cough. But contemporary doctors did identify 4 distinct clinical forms of Russian Flu: a simple fever that would increase over 48 hours and then subside within 3 or 4 days; a gastrointestinal form in which people had severe diarrhea, fevers, and stomach aches (which honestly could have been a co-infection with the raging Cholera epidemic at the time); a rarer catarrhal form (profuse mucus production that would fill the sinuses and lungs and progress to pneumonia); and finally the worst one, a “nervous” form that caused intense nerve pain in the hands and feet driving people mad. Regardless of which form someone got the worst symptom, and the most common reason why someone would die outside of catching pneumonia (fluid in the lungs) is developing skin lesions. These bullae (large blisters filled with white fluid) were painful, itchy, and formed in the creases of the feet, hands, and extremities which were prone to popping—once popped they were open sores ripe for infection. If you didn’t manage to die from the skin lesions then kidney failure, digestive inability, or spinal nerve damage that would drive people towards suicide was another common way to die.
    • Here’s the problem with Russian Flu…it doesn’t appear to be a Flu. Nowadays we attribute the word Flu to the Influenza Virus, a small RNA virus from the family Orthomyxoviridae but back in previous centuries the word Influenza meant any disease that affected humans. The word is derived from the Latin influentia meaning “to flow into” and it was believed that the stars gave off an intangible fluid that flowed into humans and caused sickness. Eventually this idea would morph into the Humoral Theory of Disease in which there are 4 fluids in the body that need to be balanced else they cause disease. There are 4 types of Influeza Virus: A and C which infect a variety of different animals (human, pig, bird, horse, bat), B which exclusively infects humans (although seals have been seen with Influenza B), and D which exclusively infects pigs and cows. If you’re older than 10 years old, you’ve almost certainly been infected with Flu at some point—already the 2022-2023 Flu season has 26 million infections in just the US alone.

  • Real quick I want to talk about the names of Influenza Viruses. The Influenza Virus is a sphere shaped particle that has primarily two proteins on its surface: Hemagglutinin (HA or H) and Neuraminidase (NA or N). These proteins are incredibly important for the virulence of the pathogen—the Hemagglutinin helps the virus bind to the target cell and infect its viral genome into the cell while the Neuraminidase helps burst the cell when the baby viruses are ready to be released. So far 18 HA subtypes (called serotypes) and 11 NA serotypes have been isolated in nature allowing for considerable genetic variation. Thus we classify Influenza A viruses based on what version of the H and N proteins they have: H1N1 caused the Spanish Flu of 1918 (killing 20-100 million people) and the Swine Flu of 2009 (killing about 400,000 people); or H3N2 caused Hong Kong Flu in 1968-9 (1 million dead). Even still there are several combinations that only infect animals, such as H5N1 is Avian Flu and is tracked by many governments to prevent a possible transmission from bird to humans. All Flu A viruses are also classified by a standard nomenclature based on where and when they were first discovered. For example, Swine Flu was referred to as A/Brisbane/59/2007 since it was first discovered in Brisbane in 2007.

  • The thing is, Russian Flu may not be an Influenza like we first thought. Traditionally it is believed that the Russian Flu was caused by H3N8 (which primarily infects horses) or H2N2 (which caused the Asian Flu of 157-8). The problem with this is that Russian Flu does not share many of the common Flu symptoms we have seen in other outbreaks—Flu follows a pretty consistent 2-8 day pattern focusing mostly in the lungs. Severe complications of Flu can lead to more severe respiratory distress, meningitis, or encephalitis but other organ involvement is pretty limited. Russian Flu almost always involved other organs. This idea isn’t a contemporary one either, people had suspicions on just what Russian Flu really was.
    • Following the discoveries of Louis Pasteur and Robert Koch in the field of microbiology, the race of finding the causative agents for common diseases was on. In 1891, German Richard Pfeiffer isolated an unknown bacteria from the nose swabs of patients infected with Influenza. On January 4th, 1892 he announced he had found it, the cause of Influenza: Haemophilus influenzae. There was a momentous uproar in the scientific community because if we know what causes a disease it indicates that we can treat the disease. The problem is that Pfeiffer could not replicate the infection of H. influenzae showing definitively that it caused Flu. But as more and more people kept finding H. influenzae in patients affected with Flu, the observations were corroborated and later was accepted as fact—by 1900 it was believed that the cause of Flu (any lung infection) was due to this bacteria. This fact was firmly cemented in the medical psyche as H. influenzae was found over and over again in Flu victims during the Spanish Flu epidemic of 1918.

A List of Flu Cures Dancing to Flu
  • But there was some skeptics—one of the big reasons to doubt was that antibiotics at the time did not touch Flu. Now this was before Penicillin but drugs like Salvarsan were the goto agent to kill a multitude of bacteria (you can read more about this arsenic containing ‘medicine’ in my post here!) but it couldn’t touch the Flu. It wouldn’t be until 1931 that the disease Influenza was discovered to be from a virus not a bacteria like once thought. When the development of genome sequencing came about, we were able to sequence Spanish Flu (1918) as H1N1, the same one that caused the Asian Influenza epidemic in 1957 and later Swine Flu in 2009. In 2005 we used samples from graves to ‘revive’ the 1918 virus and found that it was incredibly infectious in primates. When Flu was discovered in 1933, scientists back-dated all epidemics that were called Influenza and claimed it was caused by H1N1. There is additional evidence to support this claim though that Flu may have caused Russian Flu. By looking at serotypes in corpses of adults born between 1863 and 1886, they discovered higher antibodies for the H2 subtype. But when they analyzed samples from corpses from 1910, they had the same levels.

The Hunt for Red Corona


  • Following the COVID-19 pandemic, researchers started to take another look at the Russian Flu and see if it was infact Flu. COVID-19 does resemble Influenza epidemics due to its similar respiratory symptoms but with other organ involvement, a Coronavirus was implicated more than a Influenza one. There are 7 Coronaviruses that are infectious to humans—3 caused deadly epidemics SARS-CoV-1 (9% mortality) usually referred to the SARS outbreak in 2002-2004, MERS-CoV (30% mortality) which popped up in 2012, and SAR-CoV-2 (0.6-2%) which we are in right now. The other 4 Coronaviruses are implicated in 15-30% of common colds and have been in the population for decades (probably centuries), HCoV-229E, HCoV-NL63, HCoV-OC43, and HCoV-HKU1. The milder viruses are seasonal and show up every 3-4 years during the normal Flu season of autumn to early spring.In 2005 Belgian researchers found that HCoV-OC43’s genome was very similar to another coronavirus found in cow, BCoV. The DNA sequence of OC43 was almost identical to that of BCoV isolated from corpses from 1890. Does this mean that a coronavirus was the cause of Russian Flu? Well let’s look at the evidence:
    • Firstly, we know viruses can jump between species, especially when there is big populations of that species in prolonged contact with the second—this is why giant pig or bird farms can be hotbeds for viral transmission. With the development of railways in Russia in the second half of the 19th century, cows started to be transported in mass quantities along the railway. This meant that thousands of cattle were packed into tiny poorly ventilated compartments allowing for easy transmission of disease. From 1870 to 1890, the bacteria Mycoplasma mycoides completely crushed cattle populations due to them being packed in close quarters and herds had to be slaughtered quickly to prevent the spread from going worldwide. What would those workers have been exposed to as they started to slaughter more and more animals? Diseases, specifically cow diseases that could have made the jump. This isn’t as far-fetched as it seems—the 2002 SARS epidemic became much worse following the slaughter of thousands of civets for human consumption. Likewise it was noted in 1889 that the cows showed the same symptoms as humans. So it's possible that HCoV-OC43 is the virus that mutated from cows into humans. So between the similarity in symptoms between COVID-19 and Russian Flu, the industrialization of the railways allowing for viruses to mutate and then for people to spread it quickly and globally, and the use of genomic science, we now believe that Russian Flu was really Russian COVID. Let’s just be glad that HCoV-OC43 is now a mild cold and doesn’t cause painful blisters and horrible nerve pain. Cheers!
submitted by Bubzoluck to SAR_Med_Chem [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 17:59 WaveOfWire One Hell Of A Vacation - Chapter 54

Shout-out to u/better_solution_743 For nabbing 13 updoots last chapter. Tel is confirmed best girl.
‘- - -’ Is passage of time. ‘= = =’ Is change in perspective.
First Prev Next Royal Road
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Pan severed the stray thread as she pulled the final stitch, finishing the pants she had been working on to distract herself. She held the item up for inspection while thinking of the other pair that had failed in a unique way during a test of a particular design. She wished to allow a large range of flexibility so as to still wear them during her more acrobatic moves in sparring, but ended up with a pair missing a critical section.
Her cheeks flushed as she thought of why they still remained as such.
“They are excellent, Huntress Pan.” Volta complimented from her position by the door.
Pan glanced to the new female, a slight pout wiped from her face. The cleaner had assumed more of a ‘maid’ role than the Paw would have thought prudent, often working as an assistant and escort when she had finished her main duties. She knew Joseph would have simply sent her to relax when she was not working, and Pan herself had tried much the same, but Volta seemed to prefer to serve when she was not ensuring the cleanliness of the den.
It was claimed as repayment for the new attire that Pan had crafted for her, but something about the lingering glances she often caught from the corner of her eye said different.
She didn’t mind the female’s presence, despite the first sun that she had arrived being somewhat unorthodox in their interactions. Volta was efficient and skilled in her field, her work thorough and completed swiftly. The only complaint that Pan might have would be the reverence the new addition seemed to have for her.
She laid down the item next to the top that she had completed the previous sun, the two items were designed to emphasize her form as opposed to simply providing warmth. Harrow’s comment about clothing being for their mate’s enjoyment as much as their own had stuck with her. She knew Joseph enjoyed her fur, the comfort he felt while idly playing with it was quite evident in the bond, but she also remembered the burning gaze he gave her on the rare occasion that her coat clung to her flesh due to rain or such, so she designed these articles with that in mind.
“I am merely excited to see my bond’s reaction.” She answered softly, a small smile being all she could reasonably force upon her face. He would be returning this sun or the next, and she wished for nothing more than to welcome him personally while donning what he may find attractive on her body.
The weak expression was due to the numbing she felt as the suns progressed, each moon the motions becoming more and more foreign, the colours of the world around her becoming desaturated and less inviting. Were it not for her kit and Harrow’s company, she feared there might not be much for her mate to return to.
“He would be a fool to be anything but captivated.” Volta assured firmly, the warm expression seeming impossible to copy in the moment in spite of the complement being a rare acquisition for the defective.
“He is many things, Volta. All i can do is present to him my best and hope that he enjoys my efforts.”
The blue-furred female gestured to the garments she wore of Pan’s design, a scaled down version of attire that she had been planning for Sahari for quite a long time. The two shared quite a similar build, save for Volta’s smaller height, so she was a material-efficient model. The only change that is to be made between the two sets is that Sahari’s would be using a treated healroot insert to accent her natural beauty with a gold glow. I was about time she repay the old favour as well as the newest of accompanying her bond to ensure his safety.
“If this is any indication of your skill, Huntress Pan, then i can only feel envy that such would be presented to him.”
Pan gave her an amused furrow of her brow, the flirtation from one of her own extrinsic. “Do you perhaps know of Harrow’s progress on the repairs?”
Volta exhaled softly, her advances rebuffed yet again. “The last i saw of her, she was complaining to her mate. It seems that the electrical here is quite the enigma.”
The Paw nodded, not faulting Harrow for failing to fix the latest issue that the Head herself caused, but still wishing Joseph was here to do so. He would likely have had it fixed within a short while of the occurrence. The power to the facilities wing was not the worst issue they could have had, the weather warm enough to facilitate the preparation of their meals over the fire outside, but the lack of a terminal after the female’s experiment meant that Robert would not be able to contact them until Harrow was able to sort the issue.
They did manage to complete the scans for Silva, a process which instantaneously sent the information apparently, but it sparked a curiosity within the orange-furred Lilhun. She immediately tried to make an outbound communication to Robert, once she had figured out the menu in order to do so, and the process blew the newest fuse upon attempt. It seemed that receiving was much more power efficient.
She blinked away the threat of tears as she remembered the moon with Joseph where they enjoyed a moment alone with naught but each other’s company, the lack of music to remind her of the time with her Human being a sorely missed addition to her suns.
“I shall deliver the blanket to Harrow then. I may as well ask for a detailed report while i am there.”
“Shall i accompany you?”
Pan shook her head as she gathered the large black pelt of a ‘mono-deer’, the thick fur soft after many treatments. “I would ask of you to extend your tasks to encompass the new constructions as well as the existing buildings, if you would like. There is no need to strain yourself, but they have been somewhat neglected as demands grow.”
Volta returned the request with a somewhat dismayed smile of acceptance. “Of course, Huntress Pan. As you command.”
The female turned on her pads and left before Pan could respond, a somewhat guilty feeling overcoming her. She knew that Volta had been working quite fervently to gain a proper place in the pack, if not simply to impart a good impression upon the Paw, but the constant flattery had made her somewhat uncomfortable and she wished some time with one whom would treat her as she was.
A slight sigh slipped from her lungs as she left her work area and went to deliver the item to Jax’s room. She heard a series of soft clacks when she entered the Hub, her kit noticing her entrance and approaching with a bounce to her step. Violet held a tablet for display.
[Back now?]
Pan situated the blanket to fit under one arm as she stroked her kit’s head. “He should return this sun at the earliest, yes.”
Violet flipped the tablet, another prepared question presented. [Gate?]
She tilted her head as she tried to place the single word within a more complex inquiry. “Are you requesting to await him at the gate?”
Violet nodded, fidgeting with the tablet anxiously. Pan felt a warm smile appear, a rare occurrence recently.
“It should be warm enough for you now. Would you like to go together once i have finished my errand?”
The Atmo bounced excitedly, a burst of colour in the otherwise dull world that had invaded the Paw.
“He may not return quite yet, but we best be ready to receive him regardless. Just promise to return to the den if it becomes too cold or otherwise uncomfortable, okay?”
Violet nodded again, nuzzling into Pan before walking off to continue whatever she was doing before she was disturbed. From the pile of tablets, Pan assumed she was working on her English lettering and Lilhun script to communicate better. She felt her heart warm as she continued onward.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Not finding Harrow within the den, she decided to leave the pelt upon their bed and search elsewhere. Soft plods above and a disruption of the skylights suggested she was overhead to continue her attempts at repairs.
Pan exited the dorms to the farm plot, taking a moment to appreciate the work that some of the pack had put into planting several crops. None had produced anything of value yet, but some of the plants had sprouted and Astra, Atrox’s mate, has proven their profession true with her efforts.
“Hey Pan! I figured it out!”
The white-furred female turned to look at the voice which came from on high, Harrow waving down to her with a harness fashioned from ironwood rope. The excitable movement caused her foot to slip, sending the Head careening off the roof. Pan’s eyes widened until a breath of relief was allowed as the harness did what it was supposed to, Harrow dangling upside down with a series of startled blinks.
“So that’s why Joe insists on ironwood over palm.”
Pan couldn’t find it within herself to laugh despite the casual remark being at odds with the potentially dangerous mistake. Harrow righted herself, climbing the rope to the roof and sitting on the edge while running a claw under where the harness had pressed into her skin.
“Joe made some adjustments after my fur got caught. Looks like it worked. Still sucks to have it dig in though.”
Pan smiled weakly at the mention of her mate. “I am also relieved that it worked. You said you figured something out?”
Harrow brightened. “Yeah! I’ve been rerouting power for the past few suns based on what Joe said he hadn’t done yet. I found something neat while i was poking around, too! Should make for a nice ‘welcome back’ present for him.” She glanced back at the panel she had left open.
“Thank you for fixing it.”
Harrow waved her off. “I wanted to listen to music anyway. It’s just a bonus that we can help Joe find out what’s going on. At least now Rob can call.”
Pan nodded in return. “Violet and myself with be waiting for Joseph at the gate later. Would you be able to take any communications should they arrive?”
“That won’t be a problem. Send for us if you see him!”
“I will. Do try to remain on the roof this time.”
The orange-furred female grinned. “As much as i love getting hurt, i suppose I’ll have to humour you.”
Pan caught the mildly concerned gaze as she left, but she was far from a state to reiterate how she felt in the moment. Something itched in the back of her mind, compelling her to venture out to find him. It wasn’t a rational thought, merely an instinctual one pressing her to action. It felt unnatural to be without his influence for so long and it was beginning to tear at her core.
Regardless, she was expecting him back soon and Violet required a caretaker since Mama has been with the other new Atmo helping along various projects, whenever she wasn’t being conscripted by Atrox for whichever artistic pursuits the male seemed to have imparted a fondness of onto her, that is.
She made her way to Joseph’s room, forcing herself not to spend an unreasonable amount of time simply touching the items he had left behind as she dressed in her new attire, a long coat thrown over to ensure that he would be the first to see it.
Satisfied with the way it fit on her, and it then promptly hidden, she left to gather Violet.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Given her increasing time isolated within the den to prepare for Joseph’s return, many of the extended pack actually acknowledged her presence, though it was mostly just a glance and the occasional nod in her direction. Cohesion in the settlement has been established, more or less, so her intervention hadn’t been as needed. It was nice to have the time, but it also led to prolonged periods of anxiety in the isolation.
None of that mattered for the moment, however, because Violet was in the process of walking up to all who would so much as enter her sight to hold a tablet in greeting, bouncing excitedly when each offered a vocal one in return, though some seemed more perplexed than others upon being presented their language by one whom they had only seen once before.
Violet had prepared several basic plates that would be used more frequently and had them secured to her shoulder for ease of use. They were mostly for answering simple questions or saying ‘hello’, but they served as good practice as well as to introduce others to the fact that she would be able to communicate more efficiently soon.
The joyous kit returned to her side as they passed another construction that was taking place slightly outside of the general arrangement they had settled into, it being another den to finally clear out more of the barracks. The warehouse had been completed for a sun or so it seemed, so they had moved on with more expansions that may be required. With more Atmo to work on things, a walkway had also been started on the perimeter wall, allowing the pack to patrol the edges once it was completed. It barely had enough room for more than a single Lilhun to stand, but it was progressing steadily, if slowly due to the nature of the work.
Arriving at the gate without running into Jax or Nalah was odd, or would have been, if not for the blond-furred female leaning against the wall and gazing into the trees with forlorn eyes.
“I see i am not the only one to await their return.” Pan commented as she approached, Violet quickly presenting her greeting to Nalah when she turned to acknowledge them. The female smiled at the small Atmo.
“Hello Violet. Pan.” She glanced back into the woods before adjusting her stance to rest her back against the structure instead of her shoulder. “Yeah, I’m waiting. They should be back this sun at the earliest, yes?”
Pan wore a wooden smile as Violet fetched another tablet to display her affirmation. [Yes]
“They should, assuming nothing delayed them. A reasonable expectation would be the next sun, though i remain hopeful.”
Nalah cycled a breath as she observed Pan, a mirthless expression returned. “I would hope they return sooner, but i doubt we would be so lucky.”
“As long as they come back to us, i will be grateful.” She fixed her coat as it threatened to part. “Regardless, i will wait for them.”
Nalah spared another glance to the forest. “I will return to my duties then. Whistle when they get here, if they do show up.”
“I will.” Pan nodded as the planner left with hesitation, leaving just her and her kit to await her bond’s arrival.
But he did not return that sun.
Or the next.
Or the next.
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
The rain fell lightly for a change, the usual heavy thrumming across the buildings instead being nearly absent in all facets as the mist wet the buildings. Nalah sighed, conceding that it would be a free sun for everyone who would otherwise be working on the recent constructions. It wasn’t that she wanted to work them into the ground, but that she was distracting herself.
She had been away from Sahari before, that was nothing new, but she had gotten used to having her near for quite a while now. The muting sensation left her weary and tired, unsure of herself in most situations without her bond to covertly confer with by merely knowing how she felt on a subject. It made her feel empty.
Then there was Pan.
The white-furred female seemed ready to tear the forest apart by claw to find her mate, the only thing stopping her being the den-kit coming out to visit her since she had not left the gate since she began waiting on the second sun. She wasn’t returning to rest nor eat, Harrow bringing out food for her when it became apparent that she was determined to remain outside.
Joseph was late by several suns in his return. The first sun was merely an optimistic estimation that could be proven hopeless by even the smallest inconveniences. The second sun was a reasonable expectation, should all go well. The third was much within the same vein as the second, and the fourth was a pessimistic prediction based on several issues arising.
The current fifth sun was one of worry, enough so that Nalah almost wished to join Pan in her endless vigilance.
She knew that the Paw would remain outside and wakeful again, Pan hasn’t even been resting recently, but staying out in the weather would not bode well for her health, and Joseph would be upset with them all if they allowed her to fall into illness due to none assisting her.
Nalah donned her coat, taking a moment to appreciate how hard Pan has worked to ensure that at least the main pack were able to be warm and dry in the environment they found themselves in. There was plans to extend such luxuries to the extended pack, but there was much hunting to be done to collect the material for that to happen. Jax was planning on taking some of the members out, but the delay of the Grand Hunter has, in turn, postponed the excursion until either he returns or...
There was no need to humour the thought further.
She exited the den, passing the four Atmo as Mama led something of a sculpting group with Violet, the latter quickly displaying a tablet in greeting towards Nalah which the Lilhun responded to as warmly as she could with the additional stress.
Violet seems to remain cheerful, though expectant of her surrogate blood-father’s return. The second sun in which Joseph did not return was met with Robert calling, a communication to which Harrow answered in lieu of Pan or the Grand Hunter. The den-kit was brought in after a short while and left with a smiling Harrow following closely behind, some arrangement met without her telling anyone else due to it being a ‘surprise’. Nalah was more than happy to allow them their secrets, especially if it meant that the overall mood of the den would remain high.
The doors closed behind her, the soft ticking of droplets landing on her hood being louder due to the material, though far from enough to be unpleasant. The ambient air smelled strongly of earth and more than a hint of pairings enjoying their personal dens during a sun of rest. The soft yearning for her bond struck her as she passed the buildings.
Sat by the gate on the wet ground resided Pan, the female clutching herself and staring out into the woods. She gave no reaction nor acknowledgement when Nalah approached, only turning an ear when she placed a paw on the female’s shoulder.
“Come inside, you will fall ill at this rate.” Nalah crouched as she spoke, an attempt to gauge the Paw’s reaction given.
She remained silent for a long moment before eventually responding. “I will wait for him.”
“He will be distraught if he returns to you being sick.”
She flinched, eyes temporarily breaking from the trees to consider. “I would rather see him as soon as i can.”
Nalah sighed softly, trying to think of how to convince the female to oblige their concerns. “Would you have him see your fur muddied and matted?”
A blink was given, followed by a cursory glance to the stained coat that the rain had allowed dirt to bleed into. Her steadfast determination wavered as she internally debated her response, but Nalah struck while the thought was fresh.
“Come. I will assist to ensure you are most presentable for when he returns.”
Pan opened her mouth to argue, but Nalah pulled her to her feet with minimal resistance.
“I will hear no argument. He will be delighted to return to his mate at her most radiant, no?”
The Paw gazed downwards with a small but pained nod. With a weak smile of satisfaction, Nalah escorted her back to the den, calling to a wandering pack member to watch the gate in their stead. A mental note was added to construct a room into the gate to allow those who were to watch from it a place to shelter from the elements.
She guided the female inside the den, turning to enter the dormitory wing and proceeding to the baths. More assistance than would normally be required was given, the female lacking the will to do more than exist.
Nalah helped her disrobe, noting the new garments but choosing not to mention them. She took the time to assist Pan with lathering her fur and washing out any mud that had worked its way into her coat. The seamstress remained silent, her gaze focused upon the abyss. Nalah felt an itch when she observed the female, a pang of loneliness striking.
Her extended absence from Sahari had left her much the same way, but she had kept herself driven in her goal of reuniting with her saviour. No sun went by where she remained idle, each often populated by bouncing from job to job to schooling within her hectic schedule with only small blocks of time to rest before she needed to reach her next destination.
Warehouses, construction sites, janitorial work, and even customer service. She had worked anywhere that would humour her requirements and pulled in as many within a sun as she could, frequently studying while on her breaks so that she could gain the qualifications needed to join the military in the field she sought. It wasn’t the most glamorous of pursuits, but she would have smiled every moment of manually cleaning toilets while being yelled at by superior officers as long as she could be with Sahari again.
She helped rinse out the soap, adding conditioner to both of them in a small attempt to bring normality to the Paw while assisting her own efforts to be presentable for her bond. Silence that had been disrupted by the falling water returned until Nalah felt the need to speak, if only to comfort the female.
“Were you aware of how i met Sahari?”
Pan glanced at her, some of the efforts showing a small effect at her attempts to sooth the white-furred Lilhun. “I only knew that you were previously acquainted.”
Nalah snorted a laugh, leading both of them to the baths to relax in the warm water. “One could say that. She rescued me from a pirate base on a neglected portion of a derelict planet.”
Pan blinked, a genuine curiosity playing behind the otherwise muted light in her eyes as she seated herself on the submerged ledge.
“She brought me to a small town that owed her a few favours and dropped me off at a facility for people like me. Those who ended up with a bad set in life through no fault of their own.” Nalah looked to the skylights, the waning light speaking of the falling sun. “It was a warm den, in spite of the type of people that ended up there. Everyone just wanted to escape their past and work for a better future. It worked, for what it was. They helped me through the nightmares, the trauma, and assisted in getting me my first job. It wasn’t much, barely a job at all really, but i was given cleaning equipment and pointed at a small storefront. It gave me something to do. Something to distract from my thoughts.”
She looked at the Paw, the latter nodding while staring into the water in understanding.
“Sahari remained for a while, though i suspect it was out of a feeling of responsibility for the female she had dragged along with her rather than any affection for me. Regardless, the talks of how i was adjusting warmed my frozen heart.” She took a breath. “I fell for her fully, and shortly after, bonded wholly.”
Pan’s eyes lit with recognition, actually absorbing the meaning of the topic at paw. “You feel as i do?”
Nalah nodded, though suspected that her initial separation had eased the impact to a great degree. “She left after less than a year, but i was hers by then. I never told her, simply wishing that she would notice and reciprocate. It was a foolish desire, in retrospect, but one i held dearly nonetheless. It was years until we were dropped here and i finally seen her again. Even just her presence made everything i went through worth it.”
“Years... I do not think i would be able.”
“I doubt i would be as composed should that occur again.” Nalah clarified quietly. “I have grown too used to her warmth. Her touch. The joy her laughter brings me... I would rather reach the Void than be separated for so long.”
Pan silently thought, her dull eyes watching a small wave caused by their movements. “She had lost her bond.”
“She did. She had also lost her love in the process. It was no expectation of mine that she might feel for me as i do her. I still do not expect such, but i relish the contact she allows between us.”
“She bonded to Joseph.”
Nalah nodded solemnly. “I know. I worried that he might take place within her heart and leave all my efforts worthless.”
“Do you worry still?”
A soft laugh escaped her. “Not so much now. It has become apparent that she sees him as an important person, yes, but not as one she wishes her own.” A grin formed on her muzzle as she regarded the Paw. “Though i hold little doubt that she would deny if he were to pursue her for a moon.”
Pan cracked the smallest smile, a great victory for Nalah. The blond-furred female refocused herself with a breath.
“I followed her once i could. Admittedly, it may have been an unsettling move, but i couldn’t think past seeing her again. I poured my all into finding her, where she was going, and how to join her. The draft made it rather easy to narrow down the possibilities. Money made the rest work.”
“I think that i would lack the strength to do what you did.”
“It was hardly strength.” Nalah dismissed lazily. “It was escaping my past by feverishly pursuing one who wanted me not. Even now, i can do little more than pine for beyond that which she allows. I suppose i should just pray she finds one whom she may take comfort in and support her from the side.”
“Perhaps it may be time to tell her?” Pan’s eyes held the slightest spark, though it quickly extinguished as Nalah shook her head.
“I couldn’t do that to her. We are of little options with the size of our pack. I wouldn’t wish her to feel forced due to the circumstances.” She sunk into the water, eyes closing slowly. “I don’t want to hear her say no.”
Pan opened her mouth to respond with a pained expression on her face when the baths door banged open, Volta breathing heavily and speaking with a hurried tone. “A group approaches the gate. We need Huntress-”
Pan flew out of the bath with no concern for the words of the blue-furred female, a towel hastily acquired on her way as water fell from her fur. Volta jumped to the side to avoid being bowled over by the rushing Paw, glancing at Nalah with confusion.
“Smart decision.” The lead planner commented dryly, the splashing of water echoing throughout the room as she exited the bath herself to dry off. “I have little doubt you would have been maimed should you have remained in her path.”
The cleaner furrowed her brow, unconvinced or unsettled by the assertion. “Surely you jest.”
Nalah returned a deadpanned stare. “She suspects her bond has returned. I pity any who would be stupid enough to disrupt her.”
“The group is of greater number than the five you had sent.” Volta disputed.
Nalah smiled, leaving the baths to fetch clothing so she may join them. “It would mean that he has succeeded in many ways.”
Volta frowned. “And if you are wrong?”
The blond-furred female pulled a shirt over her head, taking a moment to consider what would occur if the group was anything but friendly. A sharp nod was given when she quickly reached the conclusion. “Then Pan will require another bath.”
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
Pan ran as hard and as quick as her body would allow, hastily securing the towel to her person as naught but a single thought raced through her mind in time with her claws digging into whatever her feet landed on to gain purchase.
Please be him.
A flash of hope. A scream of need. An isolated desire to reunite with her bond burning like acid through her veins. There was little more that her consciousness could process other than the primal push to keep him in her claws no matter what.
Her legs burned, her lungs struggled, her heart raced. All pained like no other but were eclipsed by the agony within her without him. A gnawing infection of stagnation without his influence.
So she ran, bursting through the outer doors and increasing her speed on the muddied grass that had been trampled into loose pathways as members travelled from location to location. A route to her loved one. A guidance to her healing, should all be as she prayed.
Naught but the wail of blood through her ears could be heard, the flushed adrenaline pushing her heart to its limit to reach him. Nothing else mattered. Nothing else existed. It was her very soul willing the world around her to cease as she moved.
The frame of the gate filled her vision as she approached it, her goal nearing with every step. Her pupils strained her eyes as they filled themselves with everything they could capture within her sight for the slightest hint of him, renewing their efforts when she still did not.
Her steps slowed, the entrance reached. Her vision was a haze of exhaustion and insufficient oxygen reaching her system through hyperventilated breaths. A low voice called, the sound the clearest she had heard in many suns. The rich bass and warm presence like a salve to her ears. She didn’t know what was said. It didn’t matter. All she could do was rush to the origin, driven by nothing but instinct.
She crashed into someone, a moment of rage at her goal being obstructed being muted as the first scent reached her.
Joy. Confusion. Worry. Relief. Guilt.
But above all: Love.
She cried, the searing heat of the moisture burning her cheeks as she wrapped her arms around him, her claws piercing the armour she held herself against, her paws desperately holding him close lest he evaporate in her grasp. Her body trembled, her legs giving out under her. She was gently lowered to the ground to rest on her knees, her bond following her descent.
He didn’t question her for her actions, instead wrapping his arms around her shoulders and pulling her into his neck, the Paw breathing deeply to internalize his scent yet again as tears mixed with the rain through her closed eyes.
“Sorry I’m late.”
She trembled at his words, pulling herself into him tighter as if to merge with him where they kneel. The sound of his heart pumping more comforting than any sound she may have otherwise heard in her life, her ear pressing itself to his throat to be closer to the origin.
“It’s okay. I’m here now.”
His voice rumbled through her, the sensation as familiar as breathing and just as necessary to her yearning soul. A muffled prayer fell from her as all became right with the world.
An excited clicking came from behind her, yet she did not separate. She felt her mate shift his head to look towards their kit, the bond transferring the pleasing warmth of him seeing Violet again, until a deafening roar of joy and sorrow struck him, only to be overwhelmed by affection.
She felt their kit join the embrace, a natural addition to her instincts, so they did not fight the intrusion, instead welcoming it openly.
Joseph cried as he pulled Violet in tightly. It was a choked utterance of emotional overload, but not one iota of it negative. Nothing existed but fulfillment within him, and in turn, her. The two sobbed without concern for the small group that joined them to observe the meeting.
“What did she write?” Nalah inquired, the slight aspiration suggesting she had run to catch up.
Harrow laughed, her own voice strained. “Robert offered to help her learn English. When i mentioned that she wanted to make a sign for Joseph, he taught her a phrase that he thought his brother would like.”
Pan could hear Jax laughing, his breathing the easiest due to his more stamina based endeavours. “And what might our den-kit have written?”
Harrow’s voice grew warm, yet wistful. A slight crack to her voice as longing mixed into her response.
“Welcome home Dad, i missed you.”

A/N: They return! RR hit 6k, You guys made it clear you wanted some Jax lore, and I’m laying seeds for future events! Again. Given my history of taking 30 chapters to have them pay off, who knows what it will be! Time to see how this all effects the den!
submitted by WaveOfWire to HFY [link] [comments]

2023.03.20 17:58 MikeJesus My uncle once poured holy water into a cement mixer. Today I found out why.

Had he lived beyond the Iron Curtain, my uncle would have spent most of his life in a mental asylum. In Communist Czechoslovakia, however, mental asylums primarily served as a means of punishing political opposition so my uncle was relatively free.
Well, for most of his life at least.
Rural existence doesn’t really lend itself to the nuances of mental health, so no one dwelled too far into his peculiarities. He was never formally diagnosed with anything and I wouldn’t dare try to play doctor, but rest assured he was far from stable. The village just considered him crazy and left it at that.
Well, for most of his life at least.
There was a horseshoe shaped scar above his right eye. When I was a kid I presumed he was strange because of that scar, but decades later, in hushed whispers after family reunions — I would find out my uncle was born strange.
As a child he would walk out onto the hill at the edge of the forest and howl at the moon like a rabid animal. He shunned the regular toy trains and wooden soldiers that the other boys would play with and instead made his own dolls of sticks and straw. Once he was old enough not to require constant supervision my uncle would disappear into the forest for days on end and would only return back to the village for food and water. When, in his late teens, my uncle arrived at the breakfast table with blood dripping down his forehead his parents just assumed he had gone out on another misadventure.
The boy was strange, but he was not deemed dangerous. As cryptic as his speech was, as incomprehensible as his behavior was — the village had agreed that he was harmless. The boy was strange, but he would never hurt a living soul.
Until the autumn of ’78 that notion held true.
Much of my early childhood was spent following my uncle around the village. While his erratic behavior was a cause for concern among most of the village, I found him fascinating. While the other adults in my life wanted to lecture me on cleanliness and how a young man should act, my uncle would tell me strange fairy tales about the magical creatures of the forest. The vodníks, the bogienky, the Baba Yaga — my uncle would fill my head with tales of fantastic beasts that roamed beyond the confines of the village. The talk of responsibility and cleanliness that all the adults in my life would subject me to was senseless noise compared to the mysterious sermons my uncle would impart to me.
In ’74 or ’75 my great-grandfather died. A couple months after the village funeral much of the family loaded themselves into their Trabants and Ladas and drove out to Poprad, the nearest city where the inheritance proceedings would take place. Even though my uncle had a downright antagonistic relationship with cars, when it came time to depart, he pushed me over to the middle seat and joined in on the ride.
The man never shaved. For most of the drive through the hills his unkempt beard kept on rubbing against my face. I distinctly remember being irritated at the prospect of having to ride between him and my grandmother. My face itched and I was angry about not being consulted on the seating arrangements in the car but by the time we arrived in the city my spirits calmed. My family promised a solemn reading of the will. My uncle promised a stroll around the city.
I chose my uncle. While my parents got ready for the reading of the will and arguments over who inherits what land, me and my uncle set off on walk through the center square. At least, that’s what he announced to the family.
Our course quickly changed.
The main square of Poprad was filled with all sorts of fantastic things a village boy might find amusing, but my uncle had other plans. He led me out of the center towards a roadway. The cement houses that surrounded the road proved to be of some interest but after a while they disappeared as well. All that was left was a busy road surrounded by fields.
For what felt like an eternity we dodged cars with nothing to shield us from the summer sun. I was starting to grow frustrated with my uncle again, I even started to complain about my legs hurting, but before my frustration manifested into a childish outburst the true destination of my uncle’s pilgrimage was revealed — the Poprad airport.
I wasn’t raised under a rock. I watched cartoons. I knew planes existed. I just never saw one in the flesh. Decades down the line I would become an aerospace engineer, the moment clearly had an impact. That initial burst of pure fascination of seeing a real flying machine will stick with me till the day I die — but it will always be tainted by what my uncle said to me.
My uncle grabbed me by the shoulder and pointed towards the airfield. With utter disgust and rage in his voice he told me that “The devil drives in one of those machines. You have to keep your eye on them.”
Over the years I had chosen to forget about my uncle’s inexplicable hatred of planes and just focused on the moment when I fell in love with engineering. Yet over the past couple of days, I have thought long and hard about what he said that summer afternoon.
I’ve also been thinking a lot about the holy water incident of autumn ’78.
The construction of the new fire station was the most interesting thing to happen in the village all year. The rickety church would still be the highest building in the village, but it would only retain its position because it stood on top of a hill. The two story cement structure grew day by day and even half-finished it managed to dwarf all the cottages around it.
That autumn I spent every afternoon at my great-grandfather’s grave. My parents thought I sat by the tombstone because of some sudden burst of filial piety and they relaxed their stances on chores in response. Truthfully I just sat there for a good view of the fledgling fire station. Watching the building be constructed in individual steps, from the metal scaffolding to the mixing of the cement was utterly fascinating to 12-year-old me.
It was during one of my afternoon observation sessions that the holy water incident took place. I was watching the workers mix cement to fill up the metal skeleton of the second floor when the doors of the church burst open. Out came running my uncle, with a jug of water cradled in his arms. After him, flustered and red in the face, came the village priest. Behind the sprinting priest, peeking out of the church doors like nervous sheep, came the attendants of afternoon mass.
The construction of the new fire station was the most interesting thing to happen in the village all year, but the holy water incident quickly overshadowed anything that had happened all decade. My uncle dashed down the church hill towards the construction gripping the stolen jug of holy water. A handful of workers were attending to the cement mixer but with savage shouts my uncle dissolved their huddle. With the intensity of a fire-fighter at an ammunition depot my uncle started to pour the holy water into the cement mixer.
The priest was beside himself with zealous rage, but the man of cloth wouldn’t touch my uncle. One of the construction workers, however, unbound by oaths of non-violence, tried to intervene. He grabbed my uncle by the shoulders and tried to pull him away from the cement mixer so that the holy water would not be squandered.
My uncle had never been a violent man. It was perhaps because of his harmless nature that the village tolerated his bizarre behavior. My uncle had never been a violent man, but when the construction worker attempted to stop him from pouring the holy water into the cement he turned around and planted his fist square into the construction worker’s nose. The impact of the punch could be heard from atop of the church hill.
The construction worker reeled back from the hit and landed straight on his ass in the gravel. As the man in dirty overalls collected the blood from his bleeding nose my uncle finished off what he set off to do. He poured the rest of the water into the cement mixer, and then, when the holy jug was empty, he screamed a cry of victory:
“Charcoal!” he yelled, “Charcoal for the long winter!”
Back then, those words meant nothing to me.
My uncle continued to scream about the charcoal until the workmen restrained him. Had he punched one of the villagers the issue would have ended there. My uncle would be chastised for his behavior, perhaps beaten a bit, and then he would be left to his own strange ways. My uncle, however, did not punch some unimportant hick. He punched an out-of-towner who came in to help with the construction. This out-of-towner also happened to be a good friend of the head of the fire safety committee. He was not going to let his broken nose go unpunished.
The police arrived shortly before sunset. By the time the sky was dark my uncle was gone.
They say he died of pneumonia in prison a couple years later, but no one really bothered to check. Once my uncle was driven out of the village his existence fell comfortably into the realm of myth. People would occasionally mention him at family reunions but he was more of a punchline than a human being by then.
The crazy uncle.
The crazy uncle we don’t talk about much. He had slipped my mind too. For a couple weeks after the holy water incident I was curious about his fate, about why he would pour holy water into a cement mixer, about the charcoal for the long winter — yet soon enough those questions were buried beneath the universal blues of puberty. By the time I got out of high-school I scarcely remembered I even had a crazy uncle.
I studied engineering in Prague and, when the Bolshevik system collapsed halfway through my studies, I fought tooth and nail to move to the West. I finished off my masters in Delft and then, through a lucky set of coincidences, ended up flying across the ocean to Arlington.
I spent most of my life in the US, away from my roots. I got married, had kids, got divorced and worked myself to the bone in the process. When my father died my schedule was far too hectic to make the flight back home. All I managed to do was to sit by his grave overlooking the now defunct fire station. My father was gone and, after a week or so of visiting, I found my mother on her way as well.
I didn’t show up for my flight back to the states. Instead, I stayed in the village where I was born.
The first couple of weeks were confusing. The village was much smaller than it was in my memories of youth. Everything was quieter, more peaceful and when night came the darkness was so total, I felt like I could grip it in my fist. The once mighty fire-station had become an empty building that served as a makeshift town hall and a place to have funeral receptions. The only thing that didn’t seem to have aged was the rickety church and that was just because if it got any more unstable it would collapse.
After the disorienting arrival I adjusted to my new rural life. My mother was confined to her bed, so I spent most of my time in the cottage tending to her or listing through the many books I promised myself I would read after I retired. The days started to blur into each other and I found myself much calmer than I had been in decades. Rural life had turned out to be rather blissful.
Then, a snake fell from the sky.
Verona Halčín, the mother of the mayor, reported one day that a snake fell on top of her as she was making her way up the church hill. She was much older than my mother, but Verona’s religious zeal and need to be the center of attention kept her animated well past her years. The mayor’s mother claimed that the snake had been a punishment from God. The village veterinarian claimed that the snake was probably just some bird’s dinner. The mayor claimed that the snake issue would be addressed.
I did not busy myself with the snake affair. My mother’s health had deteriorated to the point where I would wake up in the middle of the night in fear that she had died. I was more concerned with the impending funeral arrangements than a snake in the church yard. It was during one of my paranoid middle-of-the-night wake-ups, however, that I found something new to worry about.
It must’ve been around 2 in the morning. I found myself sweating in bed and my mother’s snoring had gone worryingly silent. I made my way over to her room to find her lying on her side, still alive and quietly breathing. That’s when I heard that terrible sound.
It started off as a quiet rumble but quickly gained in dark tenor. Soon enough the whole cottage was shaking. Somewhere above us something terrible moved. It sounded like thunder amplified through a metal cave. The terrible noise was unlike anything I had ever heard before and its mere presence made any thought impossible. It wasn’t until the dark roar had fizzled off into the distance that I realized that the noise sounded strangely familiar.
I just couldn’t place my finger on it.
My mother has been hard of hearing for years now. She slept through the deafening roar and, when I asked her about it in the morning, she excused it as a simple thunderstorm somewhere off in the distance. Her explanation didn’t calm me.
In the evening, once my mother had gone to sleep, I found myself in need of company and a drink.
Off in the village pub the air was rife with discussion about more alleged snake sightings. Some claimed the snakes were a sign of divine judgment, others claimed that there was a stork nest in the steeple of the church — all were very convinced of their theories. The discussion was losing in its civility and threatened to burst into violence, yet before fists and chairs started getting thrown around mayor Halčín banged on the table and demanded calm. The steeple of the church would be inspected on the following morning. All discussion of snakes was to cease till then.
In that brief silence between the shouts I thought of bringing up the strange howl I had heard in the night, but before I did someone beat me to it. The city kid spoke up.
We had both moved to the village around the same time, but I had roots. He didn’t. The kid asked about the strange noise in the night and all he received from the table were stares.
Halčín told him it was just thunder. The rest of the table murmured in approval.
The kid didn’t take it. He said he saw a glimpse of the thing. Something had flown above the village. The kid started saying something about the thing shining with red light but before he could get into any proper descriptions Halčín stopped him in his tracks.
It was thunder, Halčín reminded him. The sound the boy had heard was thunder and any further discussion was spreading panic just like the snake talk. He was told, in no uncertain terms, that further input on the subject was not welcome.
I had grown up around Halčín and knew not to contradict him. The kid didn’t seem to need the years of experience. He knew to stay quiet as well. After the mayor had shut him up the kid finished his drink and left. I was happy I didn’t bring up the sound myself. Eventually, with a couple of drinks, I convinced myself that Halčín had been right — all I heard was some far off thunder.
At least that’s what I told myself.
I couldn’t fall asleep that night. I had drunk enough to become sluggish and my internal monologue had descended from words into vague notions, but consciousness refused to depart. I laid in bed, listening to my mother’s strained snoring, trying to remember why the sound I had heard the night prior sounded so familiar.
My mind was far too dulled to even properly recall the sound, but by the time the bedside alarm clock creeped towards 2AM it was no longer necessary. The sound was back. As if it had been tied to my mother’s snores it slowly crawled into reality. The roar above grew louder and louder until everything else ceased to exist. The windows of the cottage shook, my face grew numb — everything in the world descended into nothingness to make room for that deafening sound.
Perhaps because of exhaustion, perhaps because of fear; I couldn’t bring myself to get out of bed. I laid under my covers with my eyes wide open staring at the ceiling trying to fully concentrate on that terrible sound outside.
Well before the noise reached its deafening zenith, I placed it.
It was unlike any engine I had ever witnessed; it was much louder and darker than anything I had encountered in the decades of my career — but the noise was unmistakable.
A plane was flying at an extremely low altitude above me.
I wanted to get up, to look at what sort of engine could produce such a horrid sound — yet lying in that bed I found myself paralyzed. The roar from the skies above, even muffled by the walls of my wooden childhood home, was so loud it made my teeth chatter. All notion of physical strength drained my body and I was left motionless in bed.
When the roar finally died down, when the night settled and all I could hear was the bubbling of the far off stream and the snoring of my aged mother — I put on my shoes and walked outside. Somewhere off in the distance that terrible sound still rumbled, but aside from the burning moon the sky was clear. Standing there, searching the night sky for a hint of a plane my uncle’s words crashed into my internal monologue:
“The devil drives in one of those machines. You have to keep your eye on them.”
There was a terrible storm the following day. Hail the size of fists dropped from the sky and the gentle bubbling stream that led through the village threatened to turn into a flooding river. I had spent the whole day inside tending to my mother, but later I would find out that there had been a death at the church. A farmhand had been sent up to the steeple to check if a stork had made a nest there, but during his ascent the wind had shifted and the ladder he was climbing turned loose. The farmhand met his end against the metal fence of the church. His death was not quick.
On any other occasion the death of the farmhand would have overshadowed all happenings in the village for weeks. The events of the following night, however, pushed the youth’s death into obscurity.
My mother had gone to sleep well before midnight. I was alone in the cottage, sitting by the window and occasionally watching the clock sluggishly turn closer to 2 AM. All that kept me company was her snoring, but beyond the glass I could see other cottages were lit up just like mine. The storm had prevented me from talking to the other villagers about the roaring jet engine, but it was clear others were awaiting its return as well.
We all sat around our windows, expecting answers.
Instead of clarity, however, the village received destruction.
I spent hours waiting by the window just so that I could see the source of that deafening sound. The closer the clock got to two the more my knees started to ache. Something deep inside of me demanded I turn away. Something deep inside of me knew that what was hiding behind that window was best unseen. By the time the rumbling started off beyond the hills I had to grip the windowsill to stay upright.
My teeth clenched and my eyeballs bulged and I had to press my face against the glass — but I saw it. For a mere collection of seconds that will forever be scarred into my memory — I saw it.
It was unlike any plane I had ever witnessed.
Whatever make the airbus was, it was bigger than anything I had ever worked with or seen. If you took the Antonov, painted it jet black and then pushed its size to the very limit of aerodynamics and then pushed a bit further — that’s how big the plane above was. On its massive wings sat two blood red lights that shot tendrils of pain from my eye-balls to the back of my skull. Every moment I spent looking at the machine I could feel my sanity slip away. I did not last at the window for long. soon enough I was curled up on the floor with my palms shielding my ears.
Before my body gave out, however, I noticed the most horrid thing of all:
The plane was flying dangerously low. The plane was flying dangerously low and heading straight for the steeple of the church. Beyond the metal screech I could not hear the impact. I could not hear anything. The universe distilled itself into cacophony and only a single thought, a single memory broke through —
“The devil drives in one of those machines. You have to keep your eye on them.”
Well after the noise had rumbled off beyond the valley, I was still lying on the floor. My mind had been completely sandblasted by fear and every inch of my body felt foreign. It wasn’t until I heard shouts from the outside that I managed to crawl to my knees.
The church had indeed been hit. The steeple had been knocked down and reduced into nothing but kindling that burned over the graves. The rest of the church was also burning. It was as if the plane had sparked the fire itself.
The sight of the eldritch airbus had been enough to drive me to the floor, but the fire had brought me back to my senses. Without much conscious thought I pulled on my shoes and ran to the old barn in search of buckets.
Dozens of villagers helped. Quickly, we organized into a chain of young and old and strong and weak — but our efforts did nothing to stem the blaze. It would take a solid hour for a firetruck to make its way through the winding hills of the valley. Well before the flashing lights appeared there was nothing left of the church worth saving.
When the bucket party had given up, chaos spread through the crowd. The city kid, the one that had first talked about the howl of the plane at the pub — he claimed he had taken a video of the crash.
His phone, however, had shorted out and refused to turn back on.
I had seen the plane. Others, who had waited with their lights turned on, had seen the plane as well. In the chaos we did our best to support his claims, but our voices were quickly drowned out.
Verona Halčín had seized the narrative and started to preach. There had been no plane, she swore. What we had witnessed was a strike of God. He had started with snakes dropped from the sky, then he brought down a mighty storm and now, at the zenith of his rage, he had struck down the steeple of the church. Her fervor quickly shifted from abstract accusations of godlessness to finger pointing.
She said it was the kid, and other outsiders, who had tainted the village. There were voices of reason in the crowd, but they were few. With the church still burning and the crowd wild with panic Verona’s words turned to absolute fury.
The kid quickly fled.
Fearing that Verena would search for a new scapegoat, I made my exit as well.
When I returned home, I was shocked to learn that my mother had slept through the entire affair. Even as the sirens of the overdue fire truck arrived by the church, her heavy snores scarcely changed in rhythm.
I did not wake her up that night. I feared that the sudden shock might push her to the grave and, even if her heart could handle being pulled out of slumber — I couldn’t imagine how I would explain what had happened to her.
The roar from the sky was much louder than it had been the night previous. With each passing sunset the plane got closer and closer to the village. The airbus cut through the church steeple as if it was a tower of toothpicks. I dreaded to think what would happen the following night.
When my mother awoke, I brought her breakfast and tea to bed. I had no idea how to broach the subject of the low-flying airplane. At first I tried to find a way to transition from our casual morning chat to the impending danger, but when no obvious path presented itself I simply came out with it — I told my mother that an incomprehensible jet had crashed into the steeple of the church. Tonight, I told her, it would fly much lower and create untold suffering.
It was time for us to leave the village.
My mother took the confusing news with nothing but a twitch of the eyebrow. When I told her about the church, when I insisted that we get in the car and drive to the city, when I told her we were in danger — she simply shook her head. Wordlessly, she pushed away her plate, climbed out of bed and shuffled her way over to the window.
When she was still able to climb the church hill my mother had been a religious person. She had never missed Sunday mass and, whenever anyone in the family was making a change in career or undergoing surgery, she would provide nightly prayers to hedge bets with the almighty. Seeing the burnt down husk of the village church that morning, however, elicited no emotion from the woman. She simply gazed out of the window and then, almost in a whisper, said:
“Charcoal for the long winter.”
My mother wasn’t looking at the church. She was looking at the old fire station.
When I asked her to repeat herself, she acted as if she said nothing at all. I asked about my uncle, about the charcoal, about the planes — yet all she did was shake her head and pity her poor brother’s soul. Then, she quickly changed the topic of conversation. She was going to cook lunch. I was to bring her some wood for the stove.
I made a couple weak attempts at salvaging the mystery of my uncle, but my mother pretended she couldn’t hear me. The thought of staying in the village despite the imminent danger was undeniably absurd, but I knew the old woman wouldn’t get into my car willingly.
When I went outside with the wood basket it started to snow.
As we ate lunch she talked a lot more than usual. My mother had always been chatty, but age had slowed her down. By the time I had arrived in the village it was clear my mother had become unaccustomed to conversation. As we dug into the goulash though, my mother’s sentences connected and she even seemed animated. She spoke of my childhood and my dad and other family members no longer present. She even mentioned her brother.
She asked me if I remembered how scruffy his beard was.
I was happy to see my mother so animated, but I had to ask. As I brought up the airplane and the charcoal and the water spilt into the cement mixer, her face softened. This time she didn’t pretend she didn’t hear me. She shook her head and smiled and told me everything would be okay.
There was something in her voice that made me believe her.
By the time we finished off lunch the world beyond the window was white. My mother’s post-lunch nap quickly turned into deep sleep and I went out to chop some wood. With my head full of memories I drifted into the sunset.
Well before two I was sitting vigil.
Just after the sun set a handful of cars made their exit from the village. Each pair of passing headlights nudged me towards the idea of escape, yet I knew it was already too late. The hill roads that led back to civilization were already dangerous to drive through during the day. Setting out after dark was suicide.
So, I waited. With my mother snoring in the other room and the moon-lit world covered in snow, I waited for the plane to arrive. Beyond the window other homes were lit up in anticipation. Knowing that I was not the only one awaiting the arrival of that incomprehensible machine made the minutes counting down to two almost tranquil.
The first sign of that devilish rumble, however, wiped out all calmness from the world. My knees turned weak once more. All I wanted to do was curl up and avert my gaze from the incoming terror. With every ounce of courage I had, I gripped the windowsill and kept my eyes locked onto the trees beyond.
The moment the dark mammoth rose from behind the trees a flurry of pain shot through the back of my skull. It felt like someone was putting out cigarettes against the back of my eyes. The engine of the devil’s machine was so overpowering that my agonized screams were nothing but a gentle tone in the nether regions of my ears.
Each second that I spent looking out of the window was tearing away at any conscious thought that was left in my brain, but I drove my fingers into the wood of the windowsill and kept myself on my feet. I watched the black airbus descend onto the village where I had spent my youth.
I watched the black airbus head straight for the old fire station.
The moment the plane’s nose made direct contact with the cement structure a brilliant light consumed the night. Sparks were flying everywhere. The roar of the engine whimpered away and was replaced with the screech of a thousand metal grinders.
My eyes could handle the approach of the airbus, but they could not withstand the impact. Drenched in tears, they gave out along with my knees. Lying on the floor of the cottage the terror of the plane crash did not leave me. Every flicker of light that bounced in from the window seemed to be ripping the air out of my lungs. In a state of utter panic I gasped for breath and prayed that the world would return to normal.
The cacophony lasted for what felt like an eternity. I was certain that my body would give out and that I would choke in the company of those horrid flashing lights. Yet, eventually, with sudden silence — the noise stopped.
My eyes were drenched in tears and every muscle in my body was shivering, but I managed to climb up to my knees and look out of the window. The plane was gone. The plane was gone and the fire-station still stood. Next to the cement building, blending into the moon-lit night, sat a mountain of black.
I scarcely registered the charcoal before my body gave up.
I spent the whole night on the floor, drifting in and out of consciousness. Dreams never came, but when I did find myself in those brief moments of wakefulness my body refused to get up. I lay on the floor the whole night, desperately assuring myself that I was still alive.
The morning sun streaking in through the windows was a flickering candle compared to the sparks of the crash. Everything felt terribly distant and nonsensical. The universe in which an airbus could dissipate against an old cement building felt far too incomprehensible to reenter after my ordeal. It wasn’t until I found my mother standing over me in the morning that feeling returned back to my limbs.
She had started a fire in the stove and was getting ready to cook lunch. With the same tone that she would dictate chores to me as a child she ordered me to go outside and gather some charcoal.
If I wouldn’t go soon, it would all be gone.
I lacked all energy to argue or try to make sense of the world. I simply grabbed the wood basket and went out into the snow. By the time I had made my way to the old fire-station the mountain of charcoal had turned into a hill. By the time we finished eating lunch most of the stove fuel had been scavenged away.
The whole affair still puzzles me, but after that one bright night the airbus never returned. I do not know what led my uncle to pour holy water into the cement so many years ago, but I understand the purpose now. My strange uncle saved us. He saved the village from an incomprehensible machine that threatened to wipe the village off the map.
He saved us and he made sure we would be prepared for the long winter that was to come.
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2023.03.20 17:44 3E3Man A Hater’s Guide to the 2023 Frozen Four

(Thanks to bandwidth I had to separate this into two parts)
Now for some of the lesser known teams. One of these teams is bound to make an upset happen with how stacked the field is.
Penn State: For Yinzers that want to get in on the college hockey action here is your team. They don’t really have anyone notable scoring wise but they shoot the puck anywhere from everywhere. They are the glass cannon of this tournament that will either score against every goalie in sight or completely flame out against a dialed in goalie. Defense isn’t really their strong suit so it's feast or famine for the march of the Yinzers.
Minnesota State: Unfortunately as the little broth to MU, Minnesota State gets none of the recognition in making it to the frozen four. However they are the analytical darlings of the hockey world despite not even having a single NHL affiliated player on their roster. That power play is straight up lethal. Mike Hastings runs a really tight ship and the whole team prides itself on taking care of the little things. If things break right they’re a candidate for a surprise run.
Western Michigan: Like Mankato, nobody knows about them due to their big brother Michigan. Despite bowing out of the NCHC playoffs early they ranked their way in. While there isn’t much in the way of depth but my god that high flying offense. They are lead by three men: Ryan McAllister, Max Sasson, and of course Jason Polin. Together these three have a mind melding connection and when they’re buzzing few can stop them. But I have said enough, this is more than one line.
Cornell: Ah yes little brother to Harvard in the ECAC. Always the bridesmaid but never the bride. It reflects in how their team is built. They’re a good ole fashion blue collar team with size and grit. No real headliners but they will overwhelm the opposition with physicality. The question is do they have the firepower? Time will tell.
Merrimack: You have no idea how much Mack needed this. In an absolute roller coaster of a season of highs the program has never seen to crippling losing streaks this squad has overcome not only a brutal hockey east but a tragedy in losing Josh Ciocco. Coach Borek has done an outstanding job in turning the program from being the laughing stock of Hockey East into a respectable team. A testament to this is Alex Jefferies, after Merrimack showed their commitment to him, he rewarded the team with their first 40 point season by a player in many years. While it’s highly unlikely that they beat the Q a Cinderella run would be something special.
Colgate: You can thank Quinnipiac and Harvard for choking but yep Colgate made it at the expense of Alaska. Despite the salt harvested from that, Colgate is one of the more endearing feel good stories coming into the tournament. After 30 long hard years of coaching for the program coach Vaughan finally gets his shot to coach in the big dance for Colgate. Physicality and size is also their name of the game and their blue collar approach is complemented by a breakout year for Alex Young. If you guys beat Michigan you will be hailed as heroes and won’t have to buy drinks for the rest of the year.
Canisius: My god, the mad lads did it they walked into a wide open Atlantic Hockey conference and snatched it from Holy Cross. While winning the Atlantic Hockey tournament isn’t the most impressive thing making it to the big dance is all that matters. If they’re gonna keep it close vs Minnesota they’ll need to employ all of the cheese tactics they can with Barczewski playing out of his mind. That and hope to god that Minnesota is feeling cute that day and doesn’t just immediately bully them into submission with their sublime skill.
Prediction: That took a bit but now for who I think will make it to Tampa. Minnesota is about as safe of a bet as possible. Quinnipiac is also set up nicely to make it to Tampa as well. Michigan can probably coast to the frozen four in their sleep with the draw they got. That leaves Denver and BU as the only coin flip, in this case I would love to see BU go out early but knowing my luck that ain’t happening.
Here’s to hoping people actually care about college hockey.
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