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2021.11.02 10:29 PAW_digital PAW
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2017.05.20 22:34 TheWalkingTroll Koi to Uso (Love and Lies)
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2023.06.02 13:43 New-Kitchen-778 Draco Malfoy v Ron Weasley Duel
Ron and Draco 1v1 years 1-7 and beyond. Who do you think would come out on top?
In my opinion it plays out like this :
Year 1- I don't think either of them have enough knowledge of attacking spells to do much damage. It comes down to fists and I think Ron takes it for me personally.
Year 2: Draco automatically wins since Rons wand is broken
Year 3-4: I'm grouping these 2 years together and I'm giving it to Draco. Ron fans ( and I am one) may be upset and I may be basing my opinion on fanon but Draco was good enough to get into Newt potions and I think he was decent student. Not that Ron wasn't but idk ik giving it to Draco. Feel free to disagree.
Year 5: I think this goes to Ron because while Draco is running around with Umbridge being dumb Ron is actively training and learning in the DA.
Year 6: I think this definitely goes to Draco. Mum and Auntie Bella would definitely have given him some extra training over the summer knowing what he was about to undergo.
Year 7: I don't know honestly. Rons constantly on the run and has more near life and death scenarios so he's gotten quicker I'm sure and more aware. But Draco would have been spending a lot of time with some dark people picking up a few tricks. I'll give it to Draco Again.
Post Battle of Hogwarts - I think Ron wins cos he would have gone through some form of auror training no matter how brief and would have been involved with some more near life and death scenarios. I doubt Draco was sharpening his combat skills.
What do you guys think?
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2023.06.02 13:41 BlueFishcake Sexy Sect Babes: Chapter Sixty Five
“It’s not very iconic,” Jack mumbled to himself as he watched the frame of the newest variant of Crawler come together.
Though calling it a ‘Crawler’ was a bit of a misnomer, given that the vehicle didn’t actually crawl. Instead, it would move about on treads. Like a normal tank. Which, while practical, were rather boring to look at.
To make matters worse, Shui would be taking just over half of the iconic older variants of crawler that did actually crawl with her on her journey North. Doing so would allow her force to be entirely mechanized – or horseborne in the case of the cultivators – reducing a journey that would normally take months into one that would take weeks.
Plus, a mountain pass is actually a location where the mechanical legs might see some practical use, he thought.
Shui was certainly pleased about the extra support. While Jack wouldn’t go so far as to say she was giddy, there was certainly a degree of ‘pep’ to her steps as she rushed about the city organizing her new ‘army’. Even the mortal elements, which he got the feeling were normally an afterthought in these kinds of engagements.
She’d be taking fully one third of the militia that An had arrived with a few weeks ago. Ten thousand men and women. As well as fifteen cultivators – who Jack had made sure came from differing Sects. A move that would hopefully keep her from getting up to mischief by turning them against him.
Ideally, he’d like to say that was why she was taking a contingent of homegrown Jiangshi ‘natives’ – for a given use of the word. The reality was that she was taking the militia because the alternative was a force of spear wielding sect troops, which would be like feeding meat into a grinder.
Which might have been just fine for the Empire, but mortals actually had some innate value to him. To that end, those sect troops still in the city – all fifty thousand of them - were going to be re-equipped and retrained as part of his new Ten Huo army.
Which was why five thousand militia members would be sticking around to train them in turn, while the remaining fifteen thousand returned to the very important task of guarding Jiangshi.
Which was a priority, given that An had all but stripped the province bare of soldiers to create her rescue force – and if they didn’t return soon their absence would be keenly felt.
Of course, this all relies on the Sects giving up their personal armies without a fight, Jack thought. Here’s hoping my most recent lesson in who holds the biggest stick will remain stuck in their mind when I make that announcement…
“Perhaps.” Elwin said from beside him, returning his thoughts to the mundane nature of his latest construct. Not that you’d know it from looking at Elwin. The elf’s arms were crossed as she watched with no small amount of awe as his workshop’s many pneumatic arms worked to bring the tank to life. “That will change though. I have oft found that the iconic nature of a soldier or weapon only grows with their success. And to hear little Lin go on about this machine, it will be very successful indeed.”
Jack hummed, conceding the point. Both Lin and Huang were down in his workshop with them – the two seemingly near inseparable these days for some reason – both huddled over a data-slate as they chatted animatedly about something related to the design.
They were a mismatched pair to be sure, but it seemed that Lin had chosen to take the former princess under her wing. Which was rather ironic, given that she was the goat-kin and Huang was the dragon-kin.
“Do you think Shui’s realized that she won’t actually be spending much of her time up north building her fortress?” he hummed.
“I would worry for her intelligence if she didn’t,” Elwin opined. “And the fact that she’s not battering down your door to demand changes to the manifest she’s been provided suggests she has.”
Jack hummed in agreement. He didn’t doubt that Shui had already noticed that her little taskforce was almost entirely devoid of building materials or craftsmen. Not that she’d want to be lugging stuff like stone or timber halfway across the province when there were plenty of natural resources at her destination.
Still, she’d want craftsmen trailing along with your supply chain though.
As well as nails.
To hear his advisor’s talk about them, you wanted nails by the barrel. To that end they had some. Gao, Ren and An had stressed that no army should ever be without things for even a moment, but they weren’t present in nearly the quantities required to build a mountain fortress like the one he hoped would soon block off the only remaining route into the province – if you ignored the ocean.
Which both Imperials and Instinctives were seemingly content to do.
No, the Pig-kin had probably known from the moment the plan was presented to her that Jack would be waiting for her to arrive at her destination before he flew over in his suit and built a fortress basically overnight.
That thought made him feel better about his decision to put her in charge of the job. It was an important job after all, sealing off the last ‘free’ entrance into his small empire.
I’ll probably want to head back to Jiangshi first to resupply basic building materials when I do head over there, he thought as he made a mental tally of what was currently floating around in his inventory. The thought made him sigh. The sooner I get a train network set up the better.
There was just so much that needed to be done…
He shook his head as he refocused on the task at hand, which was creating the prototype of the new Kang Barrel. A name that had created nothing but confusion for his underlings, but tickled his funny bone.
Not least of all because he hadn’t been the one to come up with the joke.
His microbots were. And while the fact that his microbots were currently capable of making jokes terrified him to his core, he couldn’t deny that they were good at them.
Because truth be told, he’d never wondered why tanks were called ‘tanks’. Though, to be fair, he never wondered why half a dozen other things were named as they were.
As it turned out, the reason tanks had been called what they were was because they’d been smuggled to Europe – or the irradiated zone as it was now known – disguised as water tanks.
Thus, Barrels had seemed an apt name for his own variant – even if no one but him got the joke.
Hell, that just made it funnier to him.
“So, how are things coming with your apprentices?” he asked the elf.
Smiling, the woman was about to respond when Ren rushed in, looking more frantic than usual. Which was a rather impressive feat given that she’d spent the last few weeks effectively running his city for him and was normally operating somewhere between totally overwhelmed and barely hanging on.
“Where are your formal robes, master!?” the merchant all but hissed. “I told you the ceremony would be starting in a few hours!”
Jack glanced over at a nearby clock.
“Ah… I knew I was forgetting something.”
Not that it mattered, he didn’t care what Ren said about tradition.
He was going in his armor.
“With that, I present your new magistrate,” an older man called out to the crowds below.
The male cultivator was actually the oldest looking cultivator Jack had ever seen. The man was a craftsmen, a well respected one. And he was also the one who had been in charge of creating the staff that ostensibly controlled the city’s runic defenses.
And keying them to Jack.
That wasn’t how it had gone down – and the other man had made it abundantly clear what he thought of this change in tradition.
Jack didn’t care then and he didn’t care now.
Which was why he ignored the other man’s stinkeye as he stood up from his throne and strode over to the balcony.
“The Empire has abandoned us.”
His first words were solemn, yet they rolled over the crowd below without trouble. A feat accomplished by a few carefully positioned loud speakers.
Which might have been why, despite the distance between him and the throngs of… not quite human mortals and cultivators below, he could almost hear the audible intake of breath that followed his statement.
Criticizing one’s superiors really wasn’t done in the empire, by virtue of the fact that said superior was usually your superior because they were entirely capable of lopping your head off. If they weren’t, you’d be the superior.
Again, certain parallels between the Instinctive hordes and the Empire leapt to Jack’s mind.
“The Empress has abandoned us. Time has dulled her edge. Corruption has infested her courts. Lethargy pervades her armies. And now, like an ape grasping for a branch as it plummets to its doom, the Empress pulls tight on her outer provinces in a desperate attempt to arrest her fall.”
It helped that what he was saying was mostly true. Or so he assumed. Because he’d yet to meet a system of power that wasn’t at least a little corrupt.
Silence was the only response he received to his words though.
Which, again, was to be expected. While the Empress wasn’t a ‘goddess’ in the religious sense of the word – the empire as a whole was surprisingly secular in that regard, focusing instead on something Jack would have described as Pseudo-Buddhism – she was also one of the founders of the Empire.
Again, not someone you criticized for long before you found yourself suddenly a few feet shorter from the top down.
Fortunately, Jack had a secret weapon.
“Yet Ten Huo only grows in power!”
That was the signal for the doors to the palace to open, and from them cart after cart of sizzling pigs, cows and whole chicken were wheeled forward. Prepared by the palace’s chefs, they’d done an incredible job with the task they’d been given. Even from his position up high on the balcony Jack found the smell intoxicating as it wafted up to him.
Fortunately, the line of sect troops guarding the front of the palace held steady as the crowd almost unconsciously surged forward at the sight of such a feast.
Really hope no one’s going to get crushed in that, he thought.
That was why he had a few cultivators on standby who would use directed burst of killing intent anywhere the press of bodies got too tight. The effectiveness of which Jack had been a little dubious of, but it was apparently a tried and tested method for ‘delicately’ dealing with unruly crowds.
Personally, Jack would have preferred to use his own troops, but Ren had quite reasonably pointed out that when it came to keeping crowds of agitated mortals in line, none were better than the personal armies of the sects.
…Or the Imperial army – but most of them were dead now.
That didn’t mean he’d come completely unprotected. His own troops had emptied out the palace of all courtiers and Sect guards hours ago in preparation for his speech. A feat that would have been impossible mere days ago, but it seemed that his little display to the Sect leaders had the effect he’d intended it to, because the cultivators present on the premises hadn’t even made a single peep of complaint as they were ordered out by a bunch of mere mortals.
Albeit, mere mortals who had An commanding them.
“We must cast off the shackles that have for so long held us back!” Jack announced. “This is not about power. Not about greed. Or pride. It is about survival!”
This time he got roars of approval – though whether that was down to his words or the food that was now being passed out to the crowd, he couldn’t say.
It didn’t really matter. It was about the optics of the thing. When people looked back on this moment, they would remember the cheering. And that would mean it had to have been a good thing, right?
“Ten Huo must grow. Must cultivate it’s strength. Must power through the troubles ahead,” he roared. “Which we have. Through our guards. Through our walls. Through our cultivators. And through our gonnes. Through those things we broke the back of the horde and slew their false dragon. And it is through the power of those things that we might beat back any foe that might threaten our home.”
He raised his fist high – and at the correct moment, his Red Dragon armor flared into being, the feathers atop fluttering proudly in the wind. “Ten Huo forever! Against all that might come! Together we are strong!”
Perhaps it was just his imagination, but that time the cheers felt more genuine. A chant even started.
“Ten Huo! Ten Huo! Ten Huo!”
“To that end, I intend to correct some of the failures of the old regime! Firstly, I shall be cutting the mortal guard force of our city’s sects down to one tenth their current size.”
That caused a stir, not just from the cultivators who were stood on the nearby pavilions, but from the rearmost ranks of the sect guard that were currently holding back the crowd while simultaneously handing out food.
Which made sense, he was currently discussing their livelihoods. The only thing that separated them and their families from the desperate crowds in front of them. Because while the city wasn’t quite close to starving as a result of the recent hostilities, it was true that a great many households were now tightening their belts.
Service in the Imperial Army or Sects provided some degree of protection from that reality.
“And from those men and women, I shall forge a new force. A grand Ten Huo army to rival that of the decrepit Empire. Well trained. Well armed. Professional soldiers. An expansion and revitalization of the Jiangshi militia that saved this city all those weeks ago.”
That seemed to silence much of the hesitation that had formed in the sect troops. The crowd though was all for it, whooping and hollering at the idea of more troops of the ilk that had so captured the city’s love with their arrival into it.
“I do this not out of contempt for the sects but out of love. With this I free them from the responsibility of policing the city. Of dealing with the mundane details of the mortal world. I free them to focus on their one true goal; the pursuit of cultivation and immortality.”
More importantly, it would make a coup significantly less likely to be successful later down the line. Or at least, less viable. Because as potent as cultivators were, they were still just individuals. They had more in common with fighter craft than infantry. They could take ground and destroy targets, but they couldn’t be expected to hold it without support.
Support Jack fully intended to cut out from under them while claiming he was doing them a favor. And while he could certainly see some idiots in the pavilion nodding along with the idea of ‘freeing themselves from the need to deal with mortals’, most of the leadership was rightly frowning at the thought of losing their ability to project power into the city.
Without mortal soldiers to form a buffer around them, they would effectively be besieged within their compounds.
Yet even as he could see them slowly considering raising some form of stink over it, he could also see them glancing over to the empty seat in their lineup where the Silver Paw sect might have stood.
No, they might make a perfunctory fuss, but they’d do as he told them. This was the ideal time for him to make a move like this. It was almost expected.
To be sure, he knew some would cause some form of trouble over this move, but that trouble would be a lot easier to deal with when he tripled the number of soldiers he had at his command within the city.
Down below, Jack could see the distant figure of Gao – and a small application of magnification showed the man was looking rather pale. Which made sense, given the massive task Jack had just slammed down in front of him. An, for her part, looked positively giddy about the whole thing. Ren just looked… tired and unsurprised, as if more work appearing on her lap was just to be expected where Jack was concerned. Elwin looked disinterested in the whole thing, which was par for the course.
Lin and Huang were… nowhere to be seen?
Huh, he thought.
For just a moment he was worried something might have happened, but a quick glance at the trackers attached to them – via some ‘gifts’ of jewelry – showed the pair were back at his compound. In the same room even.
Probably caught up in some science experiment, he thought with a small smile.
“Yet what is a mortal army without a core of cultivators?” Jack continued. “Am I to demand a tithe from the sects that have already given so much? To both me and this city?” He shook his head. “Nay.”
He stretched out his arm, and with perfect timing a dozen figures dropped from the windows of the palace, landing perfectly behind the sects guards in a crouched position.
They were clearly cultivators – yet they didn’t look like them. For one thing, they were armored. From head to toe. Gleaming steel armor that was inlaid with protective runes.
It wasn’t as comprehensive as metal plate would be. Gaps existed to allow for great locomotion from the user. Yet it was still more armor than any cultivator would ever be caught wearing.
Because in the local parlance, armor was a sign of weakness. A lack of confidence in ones skills and cultivation.
Or at least, that had been the case until Jack showed up.
The next thing about them was that they were uniform. Perfectly so. Only the weapons were different. Some had glaives. Some had swords. Others axes. The only commonality there were the revolvers at their hips.
He didn’t doubt they looked absurd to the cultivators in the pavilions, each of them dressed differently to their fellows, with only a small adherence to their sect colors to mark their allegiance. Because cultivators didn’t do uniforms.
They were warriors. Heroes. Not soldiers.
Or at least, they weren’t, Jack smirked.
He raised both arms high above his head.
“I demand nothing of the sects, for volunteers have already shown up to be part of this great army. Ready to give their lives. Their souls. Their very identities to protect our great Ten Huo!”
Jack slammed his fist down onto the banister, letting the loud thud echo across the courtyard.
“I present to you, the Steel Paw!”
For the first time since they had arrived, the mystery cultivators stood up, their blue cloaks fluttering in the winds as they pulled back their hood to reveal not faces, but helms.
Helms shaped like a snarling tiger. First
/ Next Another three chapters are also available on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/bluefishcake We also have a (surprisingly) active Discord where and I and a few other authors like to hang out: https://discord.gg/RctHFucHaq
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2023.06.02 13:40 minatozakiparty Any tips for someone wanting to continue to lose but not wanting to delve too heavily into numbers?
For info, I'm female.
This is the second weightloss journey of my life. The first was when I was in my late teens/early twenties, and I lost a substantial amount of weight. Which was good...until it wasn't. I learnt during that time that I have a tendency to veer towards disordered eating when I become a calorie counter. I'm a perfectionist, and during my first weightloss journey I was really obsessive about counting calories and would get really stressed and upset if I went over, and eventually just started to get sick mentally.
I gained back the weight (and then some). Now that I'm nearly 30, I've decided I want to lose weight again. And to do so avoiding numbers as much as humanly possible. No scale. Limited calorie counting.
So far, it's worked well. My philosophy has mainly been to transition to meals that I simply know are healthier - e.g. salmon, rice, salad, and eggs for dinner rather than (two servings) of pasta every night. I've gone from a size 18-20 to a size 12-14. I think before I was probably eating around 3000+ calories, so I'm not shocked that I've lost weight. I have calorie counted now and then but in a broad way - e.g. "hey I've never eaten this meal before, let me quickly calorie count it to get a broad sense of how much it is and never count again".
Now that I'm getting to size 12-14 territory, and my goal is 8-10, I am struggling to lose weight. Of course, we all know that happens. I'm not sure how to approach this period without potentially indulging habits that I think I need to stay away from, like jumping on the scale all of the time or bunkering down and thinking about tinkering with numbers.
Does anyone have any tips? I am relatively sedentary still, though I do plan on gradually upping my exercise too. I'm also struggling the most with losing weight around my midsection. Everywhere else is really thinning out to the point that it's hard to find jeans the right size, because my thighs and ass are a 12 but my tummy is not.
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2023.06.02 13:40 GoldenYoshi99 My sister is sexist while also thinking she is a victim of sexism
My sister needs to be a victim so bad that it's pathetic. Not only that but she's become more and more of an sjw about pretty much everything. If she can't just scream and cry about me abusing her, she turns it into me being sexist as she runs to our mom about me.
I told her to keep her 3 toddlers out of my things, as it's an ongoing problem, and instead of just saying ok she went on a rant, deliberately shouting loud enough for our mom to hear that "that reflects on how you feel about me and women in general"
Later she was calling me ignorant and rude literally just due to the fact that I'm a male, even though I said or did literally nothing at all to provoke her. I told her quietly that she needs to stop being a victim. In an instant she ran to our mom about me abusing her. This is typically what she does. She will press your buttons like an elevator until you explain why she's wrong or being ridiculous, and then she will devolve into screaming and crying about you.
Numerous times I have gotten into an argument with her because she blew something out of proportion, and when she can tell that I'm right she just screams about "another ignorant male mansplaining" when nothing happened. I tell her to stop screaming and crying all the time, she screams and cries about mansplaining. I tell her to stop throwing her trash in the sink, she screams and cries about mansplaining. She was drunk and throwing a fit, I asked why she was angry (over something that didn't even happen, mind you) she screams and cries about mansplaining. I make literally any statement that reflects on her toxic behavior, she screams and cries about mansplaining.
She's not "men and women are equal" feminist, she's "men bad and women good" feminist. Usually I never say a word to her. I will go weeks without so much as looking at her despite the fact we live in the same house, all while, like I said above, she is deliberately trying to anger me so she can look like the victim, and usually turn it into a misogynist thing. Most of the time I never bother to entertain her ridiculous narcissism but the few times I do try to explain she's angry over NOTHING or she is intentionally trying to be a victim, it turns into mansplaining.
She then runs to our mom about it, and will blow it way out of proportion so I look like the bad guy. And... you know the drill by now, when I try to explain she's lying or stretching it, it turns into me mansplaining. I can't be the only one here with a "progressive" family member who does this shit
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2023.06.02 13:39 SquishyAstolfo Hallucinations?
I've had a pretty bad migraine at work today and started seeing things. However, since it's so early I'm not sure if they were actual hallucinations or some form of super fast dream.
I'd be sitting at my desk and either see someone standing over me or one of my coworkers being near me and doing something but then I'd blink and no one was there. I also would be looking at the computer screen and read entire paragraphs only to blink or "come to" and notice no such words were on the page I was looking at.
I'm not sure what these would be called or if it's just some sort of realistic, mini dream or actual hallucinations. I'm often tired but I've never had something like this happen before. Does anyone know what this could be called or experienced similar things?
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2023.06.02 13:39 BeerbongsBe Super nervous for BPT, BST, FM (rant)
Hi all, my first post here!
I’m getting ready to sit BPT, BST and FM next week, and I’m really nervous.
I got 52% on my FM mock and 57% on my BST mock, so I’m near the mark but have no comfort as I know I’m going to be a marginal pass/fail case!
BPP haven’t marked my BPT mock yet as my schedule only meant it was due to be sat on Wednesday, and I’m doubtful I’ll get it back in time for me to do anything meaningful with the results. I’m going into the exam blind.
I’m seriously wondering if I’ve hit my peak here with BPT, I find it really difficult to understand everything that’s going on in the scenario. I feel like I know all the taxes, reliefs and rules but can’t apply them properly to the scenario because there’s so much going on. Seriously considering whether I have undiagnosed ADHD because there’s too much going on there for my brain.
I’m so nervous to fail 1 or at worst more than 1, as my firm will require me to resit in November instead of taking CR and SBM, and then I’ll have to sit all 3 of the advanced papers together next July - which I don’t think I’m capable of!
How’s everyone else getting on?
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2023.06.02 13:39 ConversationBrief463 I want to leave my fiancé because I want kids and he’s not ready
For context my fiancé (25M) and I (24F) have been together for over a year. And I know that doesn’t sound like a long time but we grew up together and were neighbors since I was 9. We went to the same school, rode the same bus, and had almost all the same classes in high school together. We even went to a semi formal and prom together as friends. After high school we sort of lost touch but talked every so often to catch up. I’ll admit I had a crush on him all through middle school and high school. And only after reconnecting 5 years later he told me he had a crush on me too but never had the courage to make a move. We bumped into each other at a Starbucks and decided to finally talk in person after years and instantly we connected the same way we did when we were younger. It was like no time passed at all. I found out my apartment was only 10 minutes away from his and I invited him over that night and we just talked about our hopes and dreams and the life we wanted. It was so crazy how similar we were with how we wanted our future to be. That night we decided to to go steady. After 3 months he moved in with me and 5 months later he proposed. Everything was perfect until two months ago. I was diagnosed with PCOS, fibroids, and endometriosis after a surgery my doctor suggested with the symptoms I was presenting. He’s been supportive the entire process, helping me recover, letting me cry over my diagnosis’s, and even taking care of our apartment and dog. I went to a fertility specialist about a month after my surgery because my ob/gyn recommended I see a specialist if I wanted children. I live with so much severe and chronic pain that the only way to potentially slow my endometriosis coming back (that was the biggest concern since it was on my bowel, bladder, and connected my uterus and ovaries to my abdominal wall with adhesions attached to the endo [I have stage 4 endometriosis]) was to get pregnant or be on birth control. When I went to a fertility specialist with him she told me how hard it was going to be for me to get pregnant and it could take years if I could at all conceive naturally due to my egg count. I’ve had the implant, 2 different iud’s, and 6 different pills since I was 13 and nothing has helped with my pain. Honestly any form of birth control made it worse. I told my fiancé I won’t go on birth control and I feel we’re financially and emotionally stable enough to start trying to have a child. It’s my dream to be a mother and it always has been. The first time I brought it up my fiancé said we will talk about it a different time since I shouldn’t make rash decisions with my mental state basically torn to shreds since my diagnosis.
A week ago I brought it up again. He was with me at the appointment and he’s well aware it’s not going to be easy for me to get pregnant and that it can take a really long time. He knows the risk of ectopic pregnancy or miscarriages with my condition. It’s not as if I just said “hey let’s have a baby” but when I brought it up he told me he’s not ready because he wants to go back to school for a different degree. I support him all the way to follow his dreams. I tried to make the point that I make enough money to support not only him and I but a child and to also cover any costs with trying to get pregnant such as IVF. Not only that but we live in a 3 bedroom apartment with a room that’s just filled with junk that needs to be donated. I know it’s hard on him as well here and I won’t invalidate that. I’m just thinking about myself and my dreams. I don’t want to have multiple surgeries to combat my pain until he’s ready. I don’t want to wait until it’s too late for me. I basically want to have a child and get a hysterectomy because I know there’s no cure for any of my illnesses except removing the cause. From the beginning before all of this he knew I wanted to have a child as soon as we were ready. I might sound selfish but I don’t want to wait to just start trying. There’s no guarantee I’ll get pregnant right away if we start now and there’s also no guarantee after trying naturally for a long time without success i wont have to have surgical intervention. I’ve never been faced with a decision like this. I love him, he’s my absolute best friend and he always has been. If he doesn’t want to compromise in any way by at least giving me a time frame to start trying to conceive I don’t think I can be with him. He was my first real love and I feel like he’s my soulmate but this just isn’t something I want to ignore and act like isn’t a part of my life. It’s our lives and relationship and I don’t want to ruin what we have but I can’t settle for less than what I may never have a chance at in the future.
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2023.06.02 13:39 OnePoet6601 rottweiler x blue heeler
does anyone have experience with this mix? I'm looking at adopting one from a shelter near me, whos 8yrs old.
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2023.06.02 13:39 Buckyplustwo James touching someone without their consent: Scandoval
I feel like this should be a topic that gets more attention. Specifically attention on James and his actions, and the frequency for which sexual assaults like this happen and are brushed away by society.
If James “smacked”, grabbed, or touched a waitress on her butt, that is sexual assault. He did not deny the allegation and he even normalized/justified the action.
This happens to women all the time in public spaces. It’s sexual assault, and this is a more important conversation to have than someone having a consensual affair. It’s happened to me many times, I don’t like to think back on it because at the time I was too embarrassed and ashamed to do anything. It’s a huge problem that a person who is relatively famous, and featured on a very popular reality show, used his celebrity status to justify touching someone without their consent. “Grab a women by the [blank]…”, is fucking unacceptable and I want to rally against the normalization of sexual assault.
*Drinking does not make a person assault someone. James’s drinking issues does not make him do bad things. It can exasperate bad behaviors, but it doesn’t cause people to be predators. What James did should be regarded no less dangerous than what Michael Darby did. Grabbing someone’s butt is sexual assault no matter who it’s done to or who does it.
*If Sandoval broke an NDA in bringing up this incident, I wonder if more information about other things will come out. This person [waitress, sorry I don’t know any other designation] may have been pressured into signing an NDA, and there may be a lot more to the story than what Sandoval said on the reunion.
Biased hate toward Sandoval should not negate an actual prosecutable offense. Being a cheater is not as near an egregious liability as enabling a possible predator. James should not be employed on Vanderpump Rules.
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2023.06.02 13:38 Butterscotch223 No Pets Allowed
Hey guys. I’m in a kinda weird situation right now. My adoptive mom has been holding onto my cat I’ve had for 4-5 years because of housing problems. We are super attached to each other. My adoptive mom doesn’t want him anymore because they just had to take in 2 new kitties from a relative that recently passed. I just graduated HS last year and am looking to get my CNA certification so I can at least afford to live on my own.
On top of every apartment near me not being affordable at all for a single person making 16-19 an hour on average (seriously, why does renting favor couples and families? What about people without connections?) every single place says “NO PETS.” I haven’t seen ONE in my area that is cat friendly.
In a way I understand. My biological sister let her cats absolutely ruin their old rented house. My other sisters dog tore everything of their house up and a classmate of mine just let her cats pee on the walls. It just sucks that as someone who takes pets and animals very seriously, I feel like by not letting me have my cat I’m being punished because of other people being irresponsible and gross. Can’t you just overcharge me a pet fee? Or do walk-in check ups? I wouldn’t care at all if it meant I could keep my cat.
Also do they not understand that the majority of people have pets they don’t want to abandon? That paired with the absurd prices and sassy tones of every listing, that’s probably to blame for why they can’t find any tenants.
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2023.06.02 13:38 BilledSauce S4 or S3 2021
Hello everyone, i am in the market for a (good looking) ebike. I like the design VanMoof the most and thus in the market for one of those. The s5 is way too expensive for me so I am deciding between the cheaper s3 2021 outlet or the new s4.
I will be using the bike everyday to go to the univeristy near me thats around 8 kilometers away. That means i will be using the bike for 16km per day.
So what would be the better VanMoof for me?
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2023.06.02 13:36 LAGirlinDC I don't get it. Bows are the best. How can I get better or what am I missing?
There are little to no strategy videos available about bows. I can only find the VERY basics. I beat enemies with very little HP because I don't go near them.
Magic range sucks. With bow I aim above target to reach things that can't reach me. I use bow to lure enemies over one by one. Slow... but effective.
What am I missing? Why do most people scoff at the bow as a main go to. I'm asking genuinely because I'm level 80 and need to nail down my first build. I've been leveling up mind /intelligence... but it's weeeeak.
Also, if anybody knows more advanced archery strategy vids.... where can I find. THANK YOU
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2023.06.02 13:35 ADC668 Edinburgh Marathon Race Report
Race Information Name: Edinburgh Marathon Date: May 28, 2023 Distance: 26.2 miles Location: Edinburgh Time: 3:46:20
Goals Goal Description Completed? A Sub 3:30 No B Maintain pace discipline No C Sub 4:00 (Complete) Yes
Splits Km Time min/m 1 7:32 2 7:40 3 7:41 4 8:04 5 7:52 6 7:43 7 8:03 8 7:47 9 7:57 10 7:55 11 7:56 12 7:48 13 7:49 14 7:41 15 7:46 16 7:49 17 7:59 18 7:57 19 7:52 20 7:50 21 7:53 22 7:56 23 8:04 24 8:05 25 8:07 26 8:11 27 8:09 28 8:05 29 8:15 30 8:19 31 8:17 32 8:22 33 8:29 34 8:27 35 8:35 36 8:37 37 8:31 38 8:41 39 8:43 40 10:23 41 17:35 42 17:15
Training had been consistent throughout with the last few 32km runs feeling good! There was no issue with fuelling and pace for all three 32km runs sat around the 7:52 mark. With the training I had set to taking SIS gels on every 5km and sipping either water or an energy drink 3km after that. This was done throughout. With a goal of a sub 3:30 mara I was relatively confident that this could be done, if not quicker... it wasn't to be!
Didn't sleep too well the night before getting to bed around 2200. Had eaten fairly low fibre throughout the week which consisted of high carbs (rice, pasta etc) and protein, however I think that looking ahead some more fibre would have done me well. Some food for thought. Dinner the night before consisted of a chicken breast and rice however in hindsight some additional calories may have been a bonus as we would find out. After an earl-ish wake with some porridge, peanut butter and coffee we travelled on the 0705 train to Edinburgh from Leuchars. A really easy journey ahead of the day. We found a seat next to a man who was on the production team for BBC's Big Weekend and managed to relax into the 1:30 journey. Sipped through a bottle of Lucozade Sport but could possibly have done with some more liquid here. Arrival at Edinburgh was chaotic with runners flooding the station but managed to find a rogue banana in M&S and wolfed it down before joining the huge queue to the loo's near the startline. Luckily word was passed down the line that the urinals was clearing so I managed to skip the queue to get a quick wee in before kick off at 10:00. As this acted as a 'training run' for July's 100km 'Race to the Stones' I wore a vest which held the days nutrition (around 6 SIS gels and a pack of Clif Bloks) and liquids (x1 500ml watex1 500ml High5 Zero Tab). A quick warm up with help of a theragun and I moved into place where the 'red' and 'yellow' sections met; My thinking being that I could get held up if I were to position myself towards the rear this may hold my up given the downhill sections of the run; this was the first of the many errors to come.
*Note the Km distance vs min per mile pacing
Race kicked off on the dot of 10:00 with around a minute before crossing the start line itself. As expected it was a quick start. I had been warned not to go too fast out the gates but was not prepared the swarms of people pushing down the steep roads. I had endeavoured not to go quicker than a 7:40 pace per mile but found myself pushing it a bit much at the start and tried to rein it in. Pacing was all over the place at this stage and there was little consistency. Possibly due to the terrain and the feeling of being 'pushed ahead' but I definitely found myself being overtaken by more people than I would take myself - likely due to my poor positioning at the start.
My HR seemed ok with it at the 150 mark (avg resting HR is around 38bpm) however I began to notice it slowly creeping up. It was at the 10km mark that I started to think that this could be a long day ahead as I managed 10km in around 48mins. I hadn't quite hit the rhythm I was used to and now out of town where the crowds disappeared apart from the odd family, it felt odd to be on course. A mistake here was to to avoid the aid stations. I was cautious to avoid the High5 gels due to the concern of having not trained with them however it was a mistake to have not taken more water when offered as I would find out.
Where my fueling technique had worked in the past I was finding it tricky to keep the momentum. Error number 2. Or 3. Or 4? As the heat increased from around 15 degrees to 18 things seemed tougher than expected at around the 25km point. I was now well aware that I had gone out too fast as my HR was now into the late 160's and low 170's. This is where it stayed for the rest of the race creeping up and staying at around 177. As we approached the 30km point there was a turnaround point which was gravel which was harder than expected given the change in terrain. At this point however each slight incline began to feel like a slog and it began to look like the sub 3:30 would take a serious effort.
I began to realize that I would need more fuel and in taking more on another gel I managed to drop the 4/5 remaining Clif Bloks and stupidly chose not to take the time to pick them up. Another error. I really began to fade at around the 35km mark however by the time I hit the 39km mark I was cooked. After waving to get the attention of my Dad who was spectating this turned out to be a random bystander and I was starting to hallucinate. My energy had completely gone and I was in trouble. I tried to keep running but had to stop, making it almost impossible to then restart. I could barely speak now and despite the continued support of the crowds which had began to grow as we got towards the finish line, felt my eyes start to close and my body want to give in. By this stage I had passed the 3:30 time and just wanted to get across the line before the 4:00 mark.
I managed to creep around the corner at the end and crossed the line. I was directed to the med tent just to the left of the finish line and collapsed onto the floor. HR all over the place, no energy and a time of 3:46 I was more thrilled that I had finished than anything.
Post-race: Having dragged myself off the med tent floor I managed to make it down to the exit area and grab some water for the salt tabs that were being given out with the race t-shirt/medal I slowly began to feel alive again. A few more salt tabs and the relief of having finished made things slightly better. A sip of a shandy and a boost bar and I started to gain some energy, however my stomach was in pieces. This was to continue with a lack of motion in the ocean for the following 3 days...
A few learning points: Self-selection at the start line was poor. Pace discipline was evident. HR was all over the place and should have been a considering factor. On course nutrition could have been better. Poor pre-race nutrition may have added to the lack of energy? Overall a long day in the office.
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2023.06.02 13:35 ImperialNorway Have they buffed the muslims?
Before i bought the DLC and every add on the xbox version have, the pope succeded with his crusades 90% of the time. Jerusalem usually grew quite big and the seljuks and the other muslim empires didnt last nearly as long or grew nearly as big. Now, when i bought everything and the game got updated, the papacy has been shat on at every turn they take. Its not too rare that muslim empires almost have a 100k troops when the HRE of the byzantine have like 20-25 each. The muslim empires are the most stable now.
Dont get me wrong, im happy this game gets more flavour and challenge but as a mainly catholic player, my god i miss winning crusades and seeing the byzantines or jerusalem expand.
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2023.06.02 13:35 prohomes3 🔥🔥Zero Deposit🔥🔥 Suriamas, Welcome Short Term Tenant (near pyramid)
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Room Detail: https://appoin.me/rooms_Ky2nx
"Suriamas, bandar sunway Room For rent
-Zero Deposit* -Free Tenancy Agreement Fees* -Brand New room -Free Wifi -Free cleaning Service -Included water and electricity (except Air conds) -Cooking allowed -actual photo -Last Room -Pm Me for more info -Near Taylors, sunway university -Near Pyramid (walking 10 minutes)
2023.06.02 13:35 Edv100 When your tech co-founder ghosts you. Seeking advice.
Hey there, hustlers. I thought I'd share a story that just happened to me, by asking your advice and potentially you helping me to understand what has happened.
Couple years ago, while traveling in Indonesia I met a guy, who was from the same small country in Europe as I am, who seemed like a genuine guy and who is a developer. We spent quite a bit of time and became I would say more or less friends. Since I work with business development and marketing and he does full stack development, he kinda mentioned to me that he want to build something together. Since he seemed a gunuine guy and a strong developer with over 10 years of experience and managing pretty big projects I thought that could be a good idea.
Some time after I got the idea of connecting AI + Dating, there are many advantages of this kinda app, won't go into detail but it was properly researched. When I presented that to him, he did like everything and we decided to move with it. He did mention that in like 3 weeks we could have the app up and running, at least for the MVP version and we did discuss that timing is important, so we should not waste it.
I was pretty excited about the opportunity, so started doing the work from my side, built branding, pitch deck, gathered lists of accurate influencers (hundreds of them), created approach strategies, extracted accurate VCs to target, found other people who wanted to help out, basically prepared all things neccesary for the soft launch and the fundraising part.
1 month have passed, there are not too many updates from the guy, the communication got slightly worse, he went to vacation with his girlfriend, then he got sick for a week, then he had a lot of other workd to do etc.
Now it's been nearly 3 months that have passed and he have ghosted me for 2 weeks straight, not replying, and not giving me any headsup if something is wrong, or if he does not want to continue or anything. Basically the last conversation that we had he mentioned that he got sick and he really wants to finish everything asap and will respond whenever he feels a bit better.
I was nothing but friendly in our conversations, even when he mentioned that he is being late for this and that reason, I do understand things change, some unexpected things occur and it's normal. But what is not normal, that he's ignoring me for weeks, and leaving me without a clue what's on his mind.
How do people act like that? Is he not man enough to tell if he changed his mind and I should move forward without him or what the hell might be going on in his head?
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2023.06.02 13:35 Liberty-Prime76 Letter of Marque - A NoP Fanfic 10
As always, thank you to u/SpacePaladin15
for the wonderful universe that is NoP
Thank you to u/cruisingNW
for proof reading and helping me out of some hang ups, you're the man! And for letting me use Barry, Borven and Tarva (No relation)! First Prev.
--- Memory Transcription Subject: Christopher A. Dewey, Human Merchant Sailor, Venlil-Human Exchange Participant
Date [Standardized Human Time]: August 24th, 2136.
The door to Suite 4006 didn't look all that different from the door to our bunk room, though the walls around it lacked the friendly atmosphere of the exchange areas; guess admin offices are bland no matter the species. Taisa was beside me trying to appear confident; I noticed she did that a lot. Originally I had thought it was for my benefit, to make me feel like she wasn't scared of me; but I wasn't so sure of that anymore. It seemed that any time she was in a situation that made her feel small or scared she did her best to puff up and push through it. It was one of the things I liked best about her; but that didn't mean I'd ever stop giving her shit for fainting.
"Taisa," I started, placing my hand on her shoulder, her tail curling a little and resting against the side of my leg. "It'll be alright, I figure they wanna ask some questions about what happened earlier. Verify reports, get the story first hand. That sort of thing."
She took a deep breath as her ears flicked at my statement and her tail swayed off my leg. I think that one means she understands, or maybe it's agreement? Still tryin’ to figure those out.
"We tell 'em what happened, get it all cleared up on our end, easy and free 'fore too long. Once we got their questions outta the way we can drop our little 'research idea' on ‘em and see where it goes from there." I squeezed her shoulder gently at the end, she beeped a little but seemed to puff her chest out with a little extra confidence.
"Here goes nothin'." I raised my hand to rap against the metal door, I assume I looked a fool when the door opened up before I actually managed to knock.
"Christopher A. Dewey and Taisa, I presume?" A Venlil in the door stated, keeping the two of us in the span of his left eye. "Come in, have a seat."
He maneuvered his way around behind the desk, sitting down in a chair next to a Human at a shared desk as Taisa and I got situated. "I am Borven, and this is Barry
." He stated, introducing himself and then the Human with his tail. "We are the liaisons for the exposure program. I assume that you know why we called you in this waking?"
I nodded, leaning back in the chair. "I'd wager a guess it has something to do with a certain upset Ensign, a bunch of angry Humans and a... pawful of scared Venlil?"
Barry nodded, pulling something up on the pad in front of him. I figured it was probably the report drafted by the guard that questioned us. "We wanted to confirm your side of the story as reported by Officer Gentry and Officer Jaisle, would you mind?"
I motioned with my hand for him to proceed. "I'd be happy to."
“Very good. To start, can you verify that this record of your account is accurate?" Barry queried, handing the pad off to me.
I sat for a few minutes, reading through the report and follow up answers that had been written down. Taisa took the pad as I offered it to her, "Looks good to me."
A few minutes longer, “Yeah, me too. Although two of the Venlil that had hidden behind Chris are missing, A female with white wool and a male with black wool with gray striping. I’m sorry I didn’t think to ask after their names.” She corrected, handing the pad back over to Barry.
“Thank you, we’ll be sure to correct that error.”
Taisa's ears perked up as she beeped out a question, her curiosity from earlier evidently not satisfied, "What does the UN intend to do with him?"
"Well, that depends, do you still decline to press charges, Mr. Dewey?" Barry asked, setting the pad back on the desk as he tapped a button to confirm the report.
I shook my head, "Nah, he needs help, not a lawsuit."
"Then in that case I am not at liberty to discuss an ongoing investigation beyond confirming your account. I apologize." Taisa's tail lashed in what I figured was annoyance at that before she took a breath and steadied it.
A few more questions were leveled at us, asking about the mood in the room just before and after the announcement, what individuals we could remember that looked the most agitated and if we could identify any of the pairs that had departed before the shouting began. Then Borven struck on a question that seemed to give Taisa pause.
"Taisa, what motivated you to intervene and guide the Venlil hiding behind your partner out of the altercation? You could have risked a stampede and caused far more problems than you were solving."
Her ears drooped for a moment, her tail coming to a standstill as she thought over the question. “I saw people in trouble, saw Chris doing something and I just… I had to help. I didn’t really think about whether it would cause a stampede until after I had already gotten them moving. After that I tried my best to stay calm; I’ve read that people at the front of a herd keeping a level head is what can start or stop a stampede.”
Borven’s tail flicked as he tapped something into his pad before swiveling his ears towards Barry. “I think that covers everything I have, Barry, any further questions?
Barry shook his head, tapping away at the pad before setting it back on its mount. “I believe that’s everything that I need. Unless the two of you have any further questions yourselves, you are excused. Thank you for your assistance.”
Taisa and I exchanged glances for a moment. “Actually, we did have one question.” “As I stated earlier, Mr. Dewey, unless you wish to press charges I cannot divulge information with regards to the Ensign’s punishment or prospects moving forward.” Barry sighed. “Please pose your question with that in mind.”
“And I understand that, this is about something else.” Barry raised an eyebrow as Borven fixed a single eyed gaze on me.
“Taisa and I were thinking that we’d, in the spirit of the exchange program, like to run an experiment.” “An experiment?” Borven asked, refocusing his ears on Taisa. She flicked her ears at him and tapped me with her tail, prompting me to continue.
“Yes. We’d like to run an experiment on Human-Venlil Business partnerships; see how we work together. Taisa is a trained ships engineer and I’ve spent the last 15 years hauling freight, organizing and working merchant ships all across Earth. I’d need some more targeted flight training and familiarization with rules and regs but I’ve spent plenty of time in simulators at home.”
A few moments of silence hung in the room before Barry shrugged. “That’s not under our department's purview but I can get you two in touch with the two people you’d likely need to… convince of the feasibility of your proposition.”
“Thank you, Gentlemen.” I said, standing from the seat before turning to walk out the door behind Taisa.
As the door closed I heard Barry and Borven bickering about how many of the pairs were going to want to stay together in one way or another. They seemed like fun, if maybe a bit stiff. After a minute or two of quiet walking down the hall our pads chimed, indicating we had received a message: Barry and Borven notified me that you and your partner have suggested an experiment. Please report to Conference Suite 4185.
Sent by Thomas Ashforth, UN Liaison.
It wasn’t a terribly far walk around the station’s outer ring to arrive at the conference room, only a few minutes.
“Alright… 4185 it is.” Taisa spoke up next to me, taking a deep breath as her ears swiveled back a little; she looked worried.
“Hey, don’t worry. We got this.” I soothed while patting her on the back; trying to put a little pep back in her step. “It didn’t get sunk in the bay so we’ve got a chance at least!”
“I know,” She took another deep breath, puffing her chest up as we stepped up to the door. “I’m just scared they’ll say no. Or worse, find a reason to split us.” “We’ll just have to make sure that doesn't happen. You won’t be rid of me that easy.” I joked, putting a small twinkle of mirth in her eye as her tail lashed about.
I saw a retort brewing but it was cut off by a stern voice from beyond the door. “Enter.” Both of us stiffened a little as the door slid open to reveal a room with a small conference table, 6 chairs in total surrounding it. The two at the far end were occupied by a man wearing a UN dress uniform and a small union jack pinned to his lapel, while a very… very
small ice-white Venlil sat on a cushion atop the table.
“Please be seated, we’ve got a few questions about your experiment
. My name is Thomas Ashforth.” Said the man, gesturing across the table.
As Taisa and I sat down the small Venlil began. “And I am Professor Tarva, no relation. I’m head of the Integration efforts. You must be Taisa!” Taisa returned the enthusiasm with a flick of her ears before Tarva turned her ears towards me. “And you must be Christopher! Protector blessed, you’re certainly the largest Human I’ve seen so far!” I nodded in return. “My friend here is coordinating the fiscal side of the exchange program. So, why don’t you two tell us about this idea of yours?”
I took in a breath to steady my nerves, Taisa’s tail coiling around my ankle helped motivate my voice forward that little bit more. “We know that the recent blockades have caused issues for Venlil prime, and while Earth may not need
anything from Venlil prime to get by there’s a lot of people who I’d bet would want
plenty. Taisa also tells me a fair few of the freighter captains are still ‘bolty’ about trading directly with Humans; neither Taisa nor myself have that problem. From what she has said there’s a lot of surplus ships floating around VPs shipyards waiting for trade to open up again. The experiment would be to acquire a smaller freighter for Taisa and myself to crew, command, and operate so as to gather a better understanding of how Humans and Venlil work together in a civilian ship environment as well as the operation of an enterprise. Plenty of research is going to come up for military applications but I think opportunities to gain information on Civilian settings will be few and far between for some time.”
“An interesting theory! But what extra information do you think we can get from a civilian vessel that we can’t from a military vessel? What you’re suggesting could easily be replicated within the logistics corps instead!” Her tail was swaying slowly as her ears stayed pointed directly at me.
“Chaos.” I said, simply, shrugging at the statement.
That seemed to catch her off guard a moment, her tail falling still before her ears perked up and her eyes came alight with a fire of interest. “And why exactly would I want to include chaos in my experiments?”
“Military ships, combat and logi, all have an inherent order to them, in combat or out of it. They are specifically trained for, and sometimes raised in it. Civilian merchants and shippers don't have that training, which means the operating conditions, stresses and strains on the crew of a military ship are different than that of a civilian ship. Monitoring how Taisa and I work together, our responses to those stresses and strains could provide valuable insight into future workplace ‘integration’ efforts.” I leaned forward, bracing my elbows on the table as I looked over her head, trying to avoid spooking her.
Despite those efforts, her favored eye bore into mine, before she changed her tactic and tried again, “Ok, so the idea has merit. But why should we get a whole ship for the two of you? Why not register you with a freight company and have you work with them as well?” She countered, a gleam in her eye as she focused on my face.
point us to a freight company that won't make a stink about having a human pilot, let alone one my size. Even if you did
find a freighter willing to stomach my presence that doesn’t change the fact that baseline interactions would be easy enough to find examples of, and could be done with any pair of applicants in any setting. What we are proposing is the examination of a joint business venture. Taisa and I have experience: I was the first-mate on my last ship, and Taisa is a Venlil-trained and registered ships engineer. These are the backbone of any ship, giving you a clean sample to get readings, uncluttered by other people”.
“That comes to another question. Why the two of you? There’s plenty of running freight companies we could organize this same exchange with, without having to dig up the money for a ship.” She retorted, despite the wording and my still… developing
understanding of tail signals, I was pretty sure she was enjoying this.
As I mulled over the question, trying to think of the best response, Taisa spoke up from the chair next to me, her ears peaked straight up, a confident look in her eyes with a voice as sure as steel. “Because we’re here. You already planned on something similar or ‘integration’ wouldn’t be on the table. I’d guess that you’ve got pairs picked for all sorts of ‘experiments’, and business is just one part of it.” Atta Girl Taisa! Said it better than I ever could.
Tarva opened her mouth for another question; if I didn’t know better I’d think she loved this kind of back and forth. But before she could begin Thomas’ voice drifted in and I was reminded of the sharp cold of the Bering Straits. “I’m very pleased you work so well together. But how would that benefit the program? Why should the UN invest in your…
‘integration’.” His eyes passed between us, like we were being measured for a casket, it was clear that wasn’t a question, it was a statement.
Flipping open a ledger, Thomas pulled a pen from his breast pocket, the motion felt like it carried more weight than the drawing of any sword. “Firstly, this, as all business ventures must be, has to be profitable. To you, to the program and to the U.N. until you’ve paid back your debt, and more. How do you intend to actually make a profit? Have you considered fuel costs? Maintenance? Registration? Permitting?” His gaze felt like it could turn me to stone, I hated accountants, near as much as lawyers.
Taisa seemed not to have such hangups, someone had been thinking. “Fuel costs would be negligible when compared to the overall short trip and high margins that could be made by hauling higher value cargo. Maintenance would be handled by myself, limiting costs only to parts. I doubt that we will be acquiring a fresh off the line ship, and I know my way around a scrapyard. Registration and permitting are firm plan-able costs that can be included within the operating budget since they come up at regular intervals.”
Thomas nodded, writing in his ledger before looking back up at us. “And what do you intend to actually ship? The most profitable ventures have a plan and a consistent schedule.” I sat up a little straighter, I wasn’t going to let an accountant send me running like a dog with my tail between my legs. “My experience is with Tramp freighters, sir.” The use of the term earned a look of confusion from Tarva and a slight sigh from Taisa, while Thomas was clearly familiar with the term. “Charging higher rates for a slightly less consistent schedule would make up for the irregularity. I am of the opinion that limiting what is hauled to one type, brand or item of cargo would, in this case, be a poor decision at such a small scale. Bulk freighters at home only work because
of their scale and the guaranteed regularity, to make such a thing work for that kind of enterprise the U.N. would have to invest far more into the ship just to get the idea off the ground. Taking bespoke contracts for individuals, or groups of them within the same city or province, would allow us to keep a more flexible margin for each run. As well, I already have a few old associates on Earth that are likely chomping at the bit to open a trade route with VP.”
His eyes narrowed a little as he wrote in his ledger again, that infernal brass pen making notes I couldn’t see. “What guarantees can you give us that this will last? How can the U.N. be sure that in a month’s time this doesn’t blow up in our faces and we’re left with an old freighter, a diplomatic incident, and an empty bag?”
To my surprise Tarva spoke up on our behalf. “Christopher's Empathy test puts him in the top 5th percentile of those tested. Taisa has been searching for a job since she graduated, and from her application wants very much to avoid returning home for work, that coupled with Christopher’s registered work history and their obvious compatibility I think it unlikely the experiment will ‘blow up’ in the U.N.s face.”
Thomas’s eyebrows scowled, like his ledger insulted his mother. He laid his pen down with a sigh, “The U.N. Reserves the right at any time, during the period in which the debt for the ship has not yet been paid, to requisition cargo space. Christopher, you will be completing a mandatory course to bring your capabilities inline with UN or Venlil freight pilot standards, failure of this course is unacceptable
.” He let the ultimatum hang in the air… then continued, “Taisa, you will be tested on how much of your education you have retained in your time since graduation, as well as your efficacy in this role. Finally: any and all damages, maintenance, modifications and or ‘personalizations’ made to the vessel, beyond what is required by both species’ workplace safety requirements, will be done at your own expense. The U.N. will not be liable for these costs.”
“These are the terms of our little venture. And they are non-negotiable.
Do you accept?”
Taisa and I exchanged a quick glance before responding “Yes.” In unison.
“With that concluded, hard copies of your agreement will be provided shortly. You both begin your respective written portions tomorrow. Congratulations! I look forward to seeing your ‘experiments’ results.” Thomas chuckled the last sentence, breaking the accountant’s stony demeanor, maybe he wasn’t that
I let out a breath I hadn’t realized I was holding. “So, that means…”
“That means you’re approved.” Tarva beeped, her tail swaying happily. “We of course will need to work out your overall flight training schedule, lodging and a business plan but we can handle that. My counterpart here will need to source a ship, but none of that should be particularly difficult. For now, congratulations on your acceptance into the Integration program!”
I thought for a moment, weighing the last few days in my head, if there was something I could lay my head down under each night it would be that brilliant twilight sky. “What about Heartwood? For lodging, I mean; Taisa’s family lives there. She says it's a small town but I’m sure something could get worked out. Could also help with introducing the people there to Humans!”
Tarva paused, her ears swiveling in thought. “I think that could be arranged, if I remember correctly there is a small shuttle port there. Although I do want to make sure that you understand: rural communities are likely to be less accepting of Human presence, you will be met with some degree of prejudice. You may not get the welcome you’re hoping for.”
Taisa spoke up before I could respond, one eye focused on me while her ears were directed towards Tarva. “I think the people of Heartwood would come around. It might take a bit but if anyone could get through to them it’ll be Chris.”
I smiled a little, looking over to Tarva. “I’ve never met a farmer I couldn’t charm! I’m willing to give it a go, just gotta avoid gettin’ torched, apparently.” For the first time, for the briefest moment, that seemed to set Tarva off balance; Taisa did mention that Exterminators were a sensitive subject.
“W-Wonderful!” Clearing her throat, she regained her composure, “In that case we’ll see what we can work out. I’ll make sure to include an extra form for you to fill out to request any personal belongings you need from home! For now, though, I think the two of you should get a good rest, you’ve both got busy paws tomorrow!” She beeped excitedly and her tail swayed happily as she turned to Thomas and began discussing the arrangement.
Taisa and I took the cue and rose from the table, headed out the door, and walked back to the room in silence until the door to our space closed behind us; both of us releasing heavy held breath as it did.
“I can not
believe that worked.” Taisa said, her tail wagging as she wrapped her arms around me. “We’re going to actually have a ship… I’m actually going to get to do what I trained to do, what I want
to do.” I returned the hug. “We’ll both get to do what we want, but first we’re gonna have to get through those tests.” She giggled a little, the joy at the prospect evident in her voice. “We’ve got this, together.” Confident as ever.
I pulled her into the hug a little tighter.
--- First Prev.
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2023.06.02 13:34 Lurking1821 Craving fast food when starting my period?
About a week before my period starts, I crave all the unhealthy fast foods. The other 3 weeks (the week I’m on my period plus the others), I don’t even want to smell it or be near it
I fall to the cravings every single time. And then it makes me feel so gross physically and I end up regretting what it does to my body
Any suggestions on how to not fall into the trap? It’s like my brain says no no no but then my car is in the drive thru
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2023.06.02 13:34 Hkayura Replying to Author's Reply
I feel like this is super silly but I'm wondering if author's find it annoying if I respond to their replies to my comment on a chapter?
See, what usually happens is that I leave a long comment about how the chapter made me feel in general and the author replies with a comment of near similar length. I'm seriously worried about replying to them again because for starters I leave super long comments and I don't want the author to feel pressured to leave another long comment for me because I keep replying as well.
I really don't want to come off as annoying by constantly replying long comments 😭😭
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2023.06.02 13:33 lookingforstranger_ Hoping to see her again
I crossed paths with a girl outside of Bagmane tech park last Monday in the evening. As usual I was going back to my room after a long day of work and on my way I noticed one hijabi girl in front of me. I wanted to talk to her but man she was walking so fast 😅. I ran a little bit and said "execuse me" followed by salam and, With a surge of confidence, I introduced myself and engaged in a pleasant conversation. She mentioned working near the Qualcomm building, although I couldn't recall her employer's name. Regrettably, I couldn't gather the courage to ask for her number, fearing I might come across as intrusive. Nevertheless, I yearn to reconnect with her and eagerly await another serendipitous encounter.
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2023.06.02 13:31 throwaweigh842 Help! Six week plateau
I've done a search for this and I've found some posts but none that fit well enough to fully help me. This is also an edited repost because it auto-removed last time (maybe because I hadn't confirmed my email yet).
Me: 35F, 5'5", Australia. No known health issues or medications that would affect weight. Most days I hit 30 minutes of exercise without doing any formal exercise.
I started WW in mid-January, weighing 153lb (69.5kg). I was allocated 23 points. I have stuck to this so carefully. I think most days I might actually be under, but I just don't want to go over. Some days I track at the end to realise that I'm somewhere near 10, but others hit 20-23. I'll normally have almost all of my 'extra' points leftover, with only one day a week above the 23 (usually around 28pt).
In early April, I reached 136.7lb (62kg). I have barely budged since. I can fluctuate around 200-300g (7-10.5oz) between weeks, but nothing is getting me below around 61.7kg (136lb). I know I'm not currently overweight, but my goal weight (and the weight I have felt most confident at) is 57kg (125.6lb).
Does anyone have any tips that have helped them break past a plateau, or does it sound like WW just doesn't work for me anymore?
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