Archives for the Date September 6th, 2021 2021-09-06 21:04:44 2021-09-06 19:52:57

OMG I’m the worst for posting this then disappearing. I’m so sorry 😭😭😭 Got busy with work but I’m back now! SOOO here we go!

What If: Power Jam: What if Claire hadn’t called Jamie back after their first meeting?

Days, weeks, months went by with no word. Eventually, Jamie’s distemper quieted to a stoic acceptance that the one night – the perfect night with whisky and chips, her hair sweat-tangled and the tavern’s city lights making her pearly skin glow – would be the only one for them. Fall faded to winter, and the snows melted into spring. He thought of her often and with the same fondness as his memories of his first horseback ride as a lad. She’d stay there forever, he thought.

Until, that is, he stepped into Geordie’s Coffee Haven and nearly crashed into a figure walking by with a steaming cup. A figure with wild dark curls and intoxicating amber eyes. And he was a goner, again.

POV: Power Jam: The phone call that happened (or, rather, the time between their meeting and the phone call), from Claire’s POV

She held the business card in hand, staring at the number. The corners had long been dulled and curled. A few coffee drips marred the otherwise white paper, and no amount of frantic flattening could completely erase the crinkled lines from where it had been crushed in a toddler’s hand.

Claire looked over to Quinn as she sat, watching as she narrated over her dolls and horses and a Mickey Mouse plushie. And her stomach churned. Jamie had been on her mind almost nonstop for the last ten days, despite her determination to stay away. The card had sat on the counter since that first night, unused. No sense in starting something that will just fail, she’d told herself. But she’d kept it. Her eyes had lingered on it every time she passed it.

Then, today, Quinn had snatched the card off the counter and immediately set about destroying it, giving her mother a near apoplexy in the process.

It was the wake-up call. The big, flashing sign that perhaps she wasn’t as decided on her current path as she’d thought. She knew where the man worked; losing his business card wouldn’t be an insurmountable obstacle to finding him. But it was a symbol. Of that night. Of the tingling current that had passed between them. Of his beauty and his smile and the kind heart she’d seen shining out from behind his clear blue eyes. Practical stranger though he was, she wanted to trust him. Wanted to believe he wouldn’t let her down. And if the thudding of her heart was any indication, Claire doubted she’d be able to move past the idealized vision of him in her mind without at least giving him a chance.

With a great sigh, she began planning her words as she fiddled with the card in one hand and her mobile in the other. As she studied the card and thought over the conversation they’d shared more than a week hence, she suddenly knew what to say. And, with another bracing breath, she dialed the number.

(Read Power Jam from the beginning)

(Read the chapter both of these refer to) 2021-09-06 13:35:19


You don’t have to be a Dharma teacher or a psychotherapist to help others. We all spend time listening to our friends. After hearing their pain, we can practice walking meditation or do some joyful task. This will give us a good chance to become fresh and clear again, strong enough to help again in the future. If we open our hearts freely but don’t know our limitations, our own seeds of agitation will be watered and we will become overwhelmed. We need to continue to practice watering the healthy seeds in our consciousness. Many people who want to help feel they don’t have the right to rest because there are so many people who need their help. But if they don’t rest, if they don’t restore themselves, not only will they lose their own sense of peace and joy, they will no longer be a resource for others.

– Thich Nhat Hanh, in “Understanding Our Mind”.

Artwork: © Julia Ismambetova 2021-09-06 09:00:49

lord-jen-grey:Where Amorous Kisses DwellPart 5 of Basia Mille 2021-09-06 07:46:44



For easy reading on ao3 (CLICK HERE)

Claire’s lost her good-for-nothing horse. Is being stalked by a bloody bear. And is sure she’s lost her mind when an unlikely savior comes to her rescue …

Or this is what happens when I watch Moonstruck too many times when I think I’m dying.


The sky is dimming to a starless black above the lone traveler.

She treads through the woods, frosting with snow, having lost her horse run astray by a hungry growl lurking somewhere behind the trees.

A bear she thinks. But she cannot see.

Her hair has unraveled like spilt ink and puffs around her face like her gasping breath, calling out the dear Lord’s name for one more chance to live another day.

But a frightening chill bolts through her flesh and she turns, swinging her rifle off her back, yet sees nothing but eerie gloom between her long tangled tresses. Could hear nothing but the panicking beat of her heart.

And then it comes like a nightmare from the shadows.

Heart in her throat, she aims her rifle and fires, a bursting flash of light and smoke.

Then another and another that meet their mark before a great weight of matted fur and fatty muscle crushes her to the cold wet ground, soaking her in blood that seeps through cloak and dress, as its massive maw goes for her throat …

But it’s fearsome teeth bear down on the length of her rifle braced before her instead.

That pisses him off.

A starving roar then erupts with flying thick spittle from his mouth making her bones tremble and her heart’s blood to seize as her ears ring. She doesn’t even hear herself scream.

The bear’s giant paw then swipes at her side and sends her rolling like a ragdoll through the rocky dirt and snow. Breathless with blood trickling from her mouth and brow, her vision begins to blur and fizzle, dancing like snowflakes twirling down from the sky.

“B- Bloody. .Hell…” she gasps, she cries, feeling herself go faint, beginning to fade away, and damns everything that’s brought her to this moment. Her very last.

She blames her husband-to-be, lost to the drink. May he drown in his own shite and wee.

His horse that she stole, may he suffer the same miserable fate stalking, growling her way.

And invokes a curse for the beast to choke on her blood and broken bones.

But before she draws her last breath, just as the moon breaks out from the clouds in a kaleidoscope of colors to her fraying sight…

A howl slices through the dark wood that strikes her heart like thunder, slapping her senses awake, and a force unseen drags the bear through the snow, deep into the trees.

She rolls painfully to her knees, forces herself to stand and falls, frantically crawls to her rifle glinting amongst the powdery white. Her fingers are frozen and numb, but her grasp is steady as can be as she points where the trail of blood leads.

Shivering from the cold and chest heaving with fright, she hears the bear wail and the beast’s rage as they battle, then the crack of fallen branches or was it the sound of broken bones? A withering cry then cuts through the bitter cold air, a dying mournful sound as it’s dealt a final brutal blow that makes her gut lurch and finally gives her legs the strength to stand upright but only just barely.

For what creature could take down a bear?

The thought is answered as a tremendous figure comes forth slowly into the moonlight, revealing a wolf but like no other she’s ever seen before. It’s fur is the dark red of a bleeding crow and maw freshly stained from it’s kill, with eyes a bright and luminous blue that overflow with a startling gentleness she can hardly believe.

He makes no further move toward her as if aware of what a fright he must look like.

Or maybe, somehow, he recognizes the rifle she wields in her hands aiming at his head, for the wolf flinches and cowers down to the ground with a woeful whimper that pierces her heart.

This beast knows the violence of man, she thinks.

Yet still she can’t bring herself to lower her arms.

‘You can’t!’ Says a pleading whisper that may just be a whistle of the wind. ‘He did save you, no?’

“A wolf has no heart!” She counters aloud, tightening her trembling finger against the trigger, even as it pains her to do so.

“He’ll rip me apart if I let him live.”

The wolf cries and flattens his ears as if he understands her, slinging a big paw over his clenched eyes.

She gawks at him with disbelief.

“You can’t be serious…”

The wolf yelps in answer.

Did this beast really understand her?

Convinced the bump on her head has poisoned her mind with delusions she madly says –

“Wag your tail.”

The wolf hesitates as if he too wasn’t expecting such a request but does so, whipping it like a rope, that leaves her mouth agape.

“You’re nothing more than a puppy aren’t you?”

He grunts as if insulted and shakes his big head, red fur bristling, and the lass isn’t sure if she should laugh at the absurdity she is witnessing. It’s then however a sudden movement in the treeline and bushes catches her eye and she swings to her left. But it’s only –

Caspian! You wicked, treacherous fiend!” She yells and stomps over at the stallion and grabs his reins. “ I could’ve shot you! I fucking ought to!”

The horse merely huffs, unbothered by her exclamations, instead eyeing the massive lump in the snow that he can’t quite puzzle out.

Nor can she.

But she’s made up her mind. As cracked as it is. Rifle angled to the ground.

To her incredibly unlikely savior, she says –

“Go. I promise not to shoot you if you promise not to eat me. But if you want the horse -” she cocks her head coldly at the grey stallion who is no better than a mule. “Have him.”

The wolf loudly snorts (making Caspian whinny, realizing now what the lump is and cowers behind the lass) and heaves itself up on its paws. Slowly and carefully, grunting as he does so. It’s then she notices with a sharp intake of breath, a dreadful hump at his shoulder and how irregular his arm hangs.

The horrible pain he must be in …

But there’s nothing she can do but share one last parting glance with the wolf that feels like a warm caress against her cheek.

He turns and hobbles back from where he came, each step a blow to her heart. But just as she’s about to mount Caspian, a great excruciating wail echoes.

She shuts her eyes.

“Don’t you dare turn around, Beauchamp. Don’t you dare -” Another outburst of pain has her pressing her brow against Caspian’s saddle.

“There’s nothing you can do, he’ll sort himself out …”

But when she hears nothing but the wind, the skitter of the last falling leaves, she grabs Caspian’s reins and heads for the red wolf.

Biting off one curse after another as she does so.

Today just wasn’t the day for Claire Beauchamp never-to-be-Randall to run away from the altar.

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