Welcome To Battle For Ice Cube! I am your host, Kumquat, along with my co-hosts, Bec Noir, World Map, And French Dictionary! This is an Object camp in which, you will try to win the one and only, Ice Cube. 24 Contestants compete in the Magical Kingdom of Prospit, and if they get eliminated, they will be thrown off into the Checkerboard, causing Bec Noir to kill you in a gruesome way. Extra mean people and objects who quit will be killed in an even more gruesome way than before. Good luck.
For fans of Ice Cube.
Hello, D4 is my first experience with Diablo and ARPG's in general. I just got to level 70 on my Sorc and I am struggling to say the least. I was playing Arc Lash, but after entering World Tier IV at 65 I could barely do non-nightmare dungeons and in Helltides I could not solo world events. So, after clawing my way to full ancestral legendaries and bis max or near max roll aspects I pivoted to Ice Shards. However, the problem has persisted and I am unable to solo content. I see everyone around me including some sub level 60 players one-shoting most things so I must be doing something wrong I assume. Please let me know what I can do to cirumvent this issue, thank you!
[←Interlude II] [Cover Art] [My Links] [Index] [Discord] [Subreddit] [Chapter 62→]
Slowly the group was peeled apart and taken to their various quarters, with the merchant Amicio shuffling off the children and paladins to his junior, taking the commander and captains for himself. Efrain was left with the so-called mentor, who was in a state of nervous agitation.
“Alright, you’ll need to explain why you’re about to have a fit,” Efrain said.
“Well, of course, of course, you wouldn’t know me,” said the mentor, “I came to the post of mentor long after you’d left the city.”
Efrain thought the title vaguely rang a bell, and he was beginning to have a dread certainty of the origin of it.
“Please do not tell me you’re a cast-off from Nicolo, aren’t you,” he said, the image of the far too charming ‘scholar’ coming to mind.
“I-If you’re referring to Nicolo Zarrentini, our most honoured founder, then yes.”
“That… bastard,” Efrain said, “I told him that it was a joke! A joke!”
The man shrank back from the apparent anger of Efrain, before growing significantly more confused as Efrain began to howl with laughter.
“The ass was always fond of his pranks. I believe he even said that he ‘wanted one to follow me into the grave,’” Efrain said, shaking his head, “it was so long ago.”
“But-but didn’t you- weren’t you part of the first convocation of the academy?”
“It was in Aimstand’s kitchen,” Efrain complained, “two hundred years ago, and they were both so drunk that if they’d taken a few steps to the left, they’d have drowned in the canal. ‘Convocation’ was one way to put it.”
This was clearly not the secrets that the mentor desired, judging by his rapidly reddening face.
“It was an old joke between friends, the idea of starting and academy of magic,” Efrain said, “I left, what, two hundred years ago?”
“But your name… and your books?”
“My books?” Efrain said, desperately scanning his memory of published works.
“Well yes. Your books. The ones you left behind. We use them as a foundation text for most of our students and…”
Efrain didn’t even let him finish, rather grasped him suddenly and violently by the collars.
“You don’t mean to say that… my old notes are used to teach. Students. Magic?” he said, voice trembling with horror.
“Yes?” said the man, who was beginning to sweat profusely.
“Those aboslute motherf-” Efrain said, as a loud gong rang out into the canal.
“Oh!” said the man, “We’ll have to pick up this conversation later, that’s the signal for canal clearing. We’d better be off before they close it off for the Festival traffic only.”
“Am I staying with you, then?” Efrain said, trying to drop the note of absolute menace in his voice as best he could.
“Yes, yes that would be correct,” he said, “as soon as I heard you were coming, I prepared the finest office in the academy for you. It’s not much, but I believe that you would enjoy seeing the labours of your wor…”
The man trailed off as he remembered the last few minutes of conversation.
“Either way, I would hope you’d at least examine it.”
“I would be happy to, mentor,” Efrain said, straightening himself, “particularly the notes.”
The man shrank at his venom but lead Efrain to his boat all the same, and they set off down the canals to the south.
“The Academy, as you might know,” he said, “is still located in the old district. As such, academy studentship is still a prized opportunity, if only to gain access in and out.”
“Gain access?” Efrain said.
“Well, it’s been monitored for thirty years, restricted to only business, and those with invitations only,” he said, patting a pin on his inner shirt, “academy students have numbered passes that-”
“No, why is it restricted in the first place?” Efrain said.
“Oh. Oh of course! You wouldn’t be aware. The Miram estate burned down almost thirty years ago. Suspected arson, though no suspects were ever caught.”
“Oh really?” Efrain said, “what a pity. I remember the old houses well. They had the most wonderful curtains.”
“The Mirams?” the man said, “I’ve only ever heard stories.”
“So the whole old district has been restricted? From where to where?”
“Just before the shipyards, master Efrain, to the tip of the white stone ziggurats. Of course the major western canals to the shipyards remain open.”
“What?” said Efrain aghast, “that much? Why, that was half the city last time I was here.”
“Yes, well,” said the man, adjusting his spectacles, “the Eisen and Poutash have been buying up immense amounts of property throughout the district for, well about eighty years now. The ‘old district’, as we now call it, is effectively two large estates with the central trade offices between.”
“Huh,” said Efrain, “well that’s not surprising, I suppose. They were always greedy.”
The man exclaimed in shock at him as they rounded a bend in the canal.
“My dear master Efrain!” he said, “the Eisen and Poutash are dear patrons, especially the former, who’ve been supporting this institution for generations!”
“Uh-huh, say,” Efrain said, trying to piece the names beyond the vague historical context that he remembered them in, “do you remember the family trees?”
“The family trees? Of the houses? Well, I certainly could give a guess,” said the man, “incidentally, Karkosian history is something of a passion of mine.”
“Well then, the Eisen,” Efrain said, “I distinctly remember something about them. In my time it would’ve been about two hundred years. So, give or take four to five generations from now.”
The man thought for a moment, and snapped his fingers.
“I think I know what you’re looking for,” he said, “you’re wondering who master Nicolo married.”
Ah, that had indeed been it - Nicolo did always go on and on about this one girl, who Efrain was fairly sure was well beyond his league. She was an Eisen, now that the memories had jumped to the surface of his mind. No wonder the academy had generational funding if one of the founding fathers had married in.
“Yes, yes,” Efrain said, “I think she was a branch family member, if I recall correctly.”
“No, master Efrain, you’re mistaken,” said the man, wearing a fairly familiar expression - a combination of fear of failure to please, and taking delight in correcting an error in a field he knew quite a lot about.
“Oh?” Efrain said, “bold claim, mentor. Back it up.”
The man once more pushed his spectacles up the bridge of his nose and began to recite.
“About a hundred-and-eighty years ago, master Nicolo married Hymatia Eisen. Hymatia Eisen was a daughter to Fielia Eisen, the matriarch of Eisen, hence he did not marry into a branch member of the family. He married into the direct, matrilineal line, represented by current matriach Aysatra, head of the Eisen family. Who is succeeded by, well…”
The man dropped his eyes, apparently embarrassed on behalf of the people he’d just named.
“Succeded by who?” Efrain said, leaning forward in the boat.
“Well, that’s the problem, master Efrain. In fact it’s one we currently struggle with. Oh, I do hate politics, but everything’s political in Karkos when money’s involved,” he said, putting on a expression reminiscent of a begging dog.
Efrain did not find it particularly charming, and pushed the man to go on.
“Well, that’s the thing,” he said, “the matriarch Aysatra, who is as youthful and vigorous as a woman half, no, a third of her age, is still well… older. There’s a clamour at the house of the Eisen on who’s supposed to replace her in the most deeply unfortunate event that she might… expire. No, no that make me sound like I’m talking about food and-”
“I get the point,” Efrain said, “spare me the flattery of a person who’s not even here. This matriarch doesn’t have a direct descendent?”
“Well, yes…” said the man, “but, it’s not exactly simple. The direct heir left the city some time ago.”
“And this relates to the academy, how?” Efrain said, “not that I care, just curious mostly.”
“Well, of course,” he said, “some at the house of Eisen… well, they think that our research and education is hopelessly outdated.”
“You mean useless,” Efrain said, more than ever wanting to get his hands on those notes and burn every copy he could find.
“Well, yes,” said the man, raising his hands in a gesture of helplessness, “some have used those words.”
“And you’re concerned that if they’re elected to leadership, your funding will be gone,” Efrain said flatly.
“Exactly. You’re quite insightful, just as the records suggested,” said the man, sniffing.
Before they could pick up the conversation, their polemen, dressed in the same blacks as the academy master, spoke up. They were before a river gate of sharpened palisades, which Efrain immediately recognized as the remnants of the old outer wall of the city, painted a bright red. The guards before it were dressed in ornate brass armour, studded with a set of small pearls and seashells.
Not quite the legion of sand and sea of old, though the aesthetic sense clearly meant to harken back to it. Efrain idly wondered how different the city would be if the legion actually still existed. In all the histories he’d read, most of their military exploits were suprisingly minimised, save for the few folk legends about them. Of course, most of those authors immediately left out the fact that almost all the legion commanders were women, which given many history writers were men, made sense.
The guards checked the proudly displayed pin, nodded, and opened the canal gates. Efrain immediately noticed the difference in the stone work as the passed beyond. It was more worn, but unmistakable paler, bringing back fond memories of days and nights spent in these canals over two centuries ago. He was just glad he was returning in a black, and not the horrid purple robes that he often inhabited while he was here.
The streets were noticeably quieter here, no doubt everyone was completing the final administration for the Festival. The buildings were also considerably older, their wooden slates near the water thick with strands of seaweed and barncles. Efrain more than once recognized the shape of an alley, or more noticeable deviations in the stonework. It was funny just how much he remembered of the old city and its details, and how little of his friends.
A couple of twists and turns, and Efrain started to recognize the part of the district he was in. Catching a glimpse of the mountains in the fading sunset, and a bridge or two he recognized, though they’d been significantly upgraded and replaced. With that information, he finally realised where they were, and more importantly, where they might be going.
“Noooo,” he groaned, “he didn’t.”
The mentor attempted to calm him, not understanding why he was so audibly distraught. The answer soon became quite clear as Efrain recognized the exact route they were taking. By the time they’d passed through the two statues, now dancing fish rather than the familiar wolves, Efrain’s worst fears had come true.
“He’d better not be buried on the academy grounds,” he said, his fingers fidgeting.
“I mean - and here we are!” said the academy master, clearly glad to move on to another subject.
Efrain looked up, nearly threw himself over the side, and forced himself to look up again. To say that it was exactly the way he remembered it would’ve been a lie. It had clearly expanded to include the surrounding pyramids, connecting them with bridges and walkways where what were presumably students passed by. The centre pyramid was kept more or less the same, with the same augurs drawing up water to the top, cascading it down in falls across terrace after terrace of gardens.
Refusing the offered hand, Efrain barged past him to take the steps two at a time.
“Wait! Wait master Efrain! I-” the man’s voice fell further and further behind as Efrain practically ran into the pyramid.
It was still a mess hall, but it was now one of long tables and high back chairs. The banners and plaques above proclaimed a short history of sport and scholarly achievement. Students, predominantly dressed in black, some with colourful stripes that Efrain didn’t bother to try to decode, stared at him. As did the cooks, still busy in the large kitchens that he himself had once manned.
The academy master had almost caught up to him when he took off again, striding through the aisle between the tables and out the other end of the pyramid. Yes, it was all the same, the same flower pots, and the marble steps and the little waterfall with the cracked edge. Two centuries, two bloody centuries, and Aimstand never bothered to fix the thing.
Efrain felt a internal bout of triumph at being proved right as he continued up the steps, before, finally, coming at last to the top.
The garden at the flat top of the pyramid was still as beautiful as ever, and the flowers he’d cultured still survived, although the blooms were less luminous than before. Efrain stepped out into the shallow pool that dominated most of the area, and noted that at the far end, where there used to be a stone bench, sat a gravestone.
“Found you, bastard,” he said, taking off towards it.
“Please, master!” said the man, practically sobbing if not for the fact he was out of breath.
Several of the more senior looking students had followed, looking totally flabbergasted at the display. Efrain did not stop, nor even look back at the procession, merely took off through the pool until he reached the steps to the little knurl of turf and flowers. There he stopped, parking his hands on his hips, staring at the inscription on the stone.
“Nicolo Eisen,” he said, drawing every word out, “Father, Teacher, Friend.”
“Muh-Master,” said the man, soaked up to his knees from his hurried splashing, “master, what-”
“Oh, calm yourself,” Efrain said, “I’m not going to do anything.”
The several students that had followed looked in utter confusion at the two men.
“Master?” one of them inquired, “should we get the guard?”
“No,” the man wheezed, bent over to catch his breath.
“Hold on a second,” Efrain said, bending over himself to gaze at the inscription, “what’s this?”
“That’s founder Nicolo’s grave, master Efrain,” said the mentor.
“Yes, I know that,” Efrain said, “I’m old, not blind. What’s this inscription below?”
“Oh yes, that,” he said, drawing himself back up to his full height, “It’s actually quite the mystery. No one really knows the language, but it was put there by order of founder Nicolo. Some of our teachers and students have spent quite a bit of time over the years to-”
“I’d told you I’d do it,” Efrain said.
“That’s- that’s what it- oh fuck you Nicolo!” Efrain said, “‘I’d told you I’d do it.’ That’s what it says!”
The mentor had gone white, while some of the students looked on the verge of fainting from confused apprehension.
“By all rights, I should burn this place down,” Efrain sneered at the stone, “is that what you wanted? ‘Founder’? If the gods were good, you’d still be alive, so I could kill you myself.”
“Please do not do that!” wailed the man, “I can’t understand for the life of me why you’re so angry! I thought you would’ve been happy, maybe even proud of what we’ve achieved!”
“I’m not angry at you, you idiot,” Efrain said, rounding on the man, “I’m angry at that smug piece of flotsam happily buried under his lovenest.”
“What?” said the mentor, the sentiment echoed by almost all the students present.
“All right, all of you, gather round. My first lesson,” he said, and, most likely out of habit, the students fell into a neat semi-circle.
“This will be a test of one question, and the one to get the answer right on their first response gets…” he turned to the mentor, “do you have some kind of regular award for achievement here?”
“Well, we do have ribbons that correspond to-”
“Great, first one to guess correctly gets a ribbon,” Efrain bowled through, “the question is this - why did Nicolo learn magic in the first place?”
The students stared at each other, daring the others to respond first.
“Well, come on,” Efrain said, “someone must have a theory.”
“Because he wanted to expand his own horizons?” a brown-haired boy said.
“Wrong!” Efrain said, “if your texts say that, they’re also wrong.”
“Because he wanted to shore up the city of Karkos’s defences while expanding on its knowledge?” said a girl with a slightly crooked nose.
“Also wrong,” Efrain said, shaking his head, “that’s exactly what he would say. You take that from a speech?”
“Well…” said the girl.
“Nicolo, you preening, self centered-” Efrain said, holding his head in his hands.
“To impress a girl?” said someone.
“Who said that?!” Efrain said, the class parting to reveal a younger, shaggy-looking boy.
“Well, you said that it was his ‘lovenest’ so…” he shrugged sheepishly.
“Mentor, get this young man a ribbon. If you need a reason, then cite him actually paying attention.” [←Interlude II] [Cover Art] [My Links] [Index] [Discord] [Subreddit] [Chapter 62→]
I was craving a frappe or sweet coffee drink and this totally cured the craving! Instant coffee, 1 packet stevia, and vanilla extract dissolved in hot water, cool it down with ice cube and unsweetened oatmilk, add 1 scoop vanilla protein powder, shake/stir then strain if your protein powder likes to stay lumpy like mine… it was delicious and really sweet & creamy tasting. 180 cal, 30g P
I have this recurring nightmare. I attend this school where odd things happen. In this school, there are people I’ve never met before. Classes I’ve never taken.
Every time I have this dream, I enter a classroom that is listed on my class schedule, and the teacher yells at me for not showing up for weeks or even months. The teacher embarrasses me in front of the class and makes me do work that I didn’t even study for.
I guess it’s not the SCARIEST thing someone can dream about, but being forced to do a mountain of missed classwork is horrible. It also feels embarrassing being humiliated in front of this made-up class. It always feels too real.
I also get variations of this nightmare. Sometimes I dream that I’m running through the halls of the school trying to find where a class is. Then, by the time I find the classroom with the right room number, it’s too late, class is over. Detention.
I’ve had these types of dreams so many times that it feels like I’m enrolled in a completely different school in my mind when I’m asleep. I even have a mental image of what the school looks like from the outside after all those times I’ve been in recess or in the parking lot in other dreams.
Sometimes it’s a class with a teacher from an earlier dream, other times it’s completely different.
I figured these dreams were based on past experiences from elementary, middle, and high school that manifest themselves into vivid simulations from the back of my mind. But then three days ago I found out that it was a lot more than that.
My friend Santiago and I ride motorcycles together when the weather is nice. For weeks we were planning on going to this huge motorcycle meetup together. Before the meetup started, we wanted to rendezvous at his house and then ride our motorcycles to the spot together.
I rode my motorcycle from my house to his using my GPS. I’ve never been to his house before. He lived about thirty-five minutes away from me in a town I’ve passed by but never visited. As soon as I got to his house, Santiago was already turning on his motorcycle in front of his garage.
“Hey man, how’ve you been?” I spoke.
“Good, and you?” he replied.
“Great. I love this weather. You ready to go?”
“Hold on, let me put my dogs inside”.
Once we were all set to go, Santiago rode his motorcycle in front of me as I followed. He knew his way around to get us out of the neighborhood and back on the main road.
Now here’s where things get weird. Between the cluster of suburban neighborhood houses there was a long building that broke the pattern. I saw it in the distance as Santiago and I rode closer. The building was sitting on a hill and just looked unnatural in its place.
As we got past each stop sign and rode closer, the building strangely kept looking more and more familiar. I kept my bike going at a decent speed of 20 miles per hour. I intended to look at this building closely and drove slowly
Then, Santiago and I passed by the front of the building. I constantly turned my head to look at it, then to the road so I didn’t fall or crash. But once we were right in front of it, I just stared. I realized it when I saw the main doors.
It was... just like in my dreams. A long one-story building sitting on top of a grassy green hill. The same distinct main entrance doors. A red and yellow playground on the side of the building. A medium sized parking lot.
There was something so liminal about this building. Almost like those liminal spaces pictures that you see everywhere online. The building did not look real, but it was there right in front of me.
Once I turned my head back to the road, we reached the next stop sign and I nearly bumped tires with Santiago’s bike. Then, eventually, Santiago and I got farther, and farther away.
The rest of the day went well. We went to the meetup, saw a bunch of cool motorcycles, ate at a restaurant in the area, then parted ways and headed home. I had almost forgotten about the building until I rode home on my motorcycle and had time to think about it.
I thought, “What was that place? A school? Why did it look almost the exact same as that school that I see in my dreams? Have I been there before? No, that can’t be. I’ve never visited such a specific neighborhood before. There’s no way I’ve seen this building in my life. It’s just not possible for this dream school to be real.
Last night, I dreamed of the school again. It started off with me looking at the time. It was noon and I was just arriving to school. I was walking towards the entrance in a hurry. I entered the building, and the students were walking in the halls as usual.
I checked my schedule to see where I had to go next. In the list of unintelligible writing, I somehow deduced that I had to go to pottery class. I walked in an aimless direction until I reached a small classroom.
An old man with white hair and glasses looked at me angrily as I took my seat. I always hated old grumpy teachers. This guy was no different
“WHERE have YOU been. What, you don’t think this class is IMPORTANT? You haven’t even started on the first project and we’re already on PROJECT FOUR.”
As always, I just sit there, confused and ashamed. The entire class giggling or shaking their heads in disappointment. The teacher gave me the angriest face as his right hand shook while holding a small pot. Right before the dream ended, I saw the pot leave his hand and soar in my direction.
I woke up not knowing if I was still dreaming or not. Dazed, I had to remind myself that it was only a dream. That dream was extremely vivid. Moreso than the others because the school felt all too real. It was like I was there. The similarities between the dream school and the real building I saw were uncanny. Something made me want to investigate it further.
I had Google Maps pulled up on my phone. I was looking at Santiago’s address while lying in bed. I knew the building should be around his house, maybe about five or six blocks away. Since the meetup spot was more east, I tapped and dragged the map to the right slowly.
It took only seconds until I found the long building. In this top-down view, I saw how it broke the pattern from the rest of the houses. I tapped it to see if I could get more info on it. Strangely, Google Maps did not have this building listed as anything. It just showed the address as if it were another house.
Then I went into street view mode to get a look at it from street level. “Oh god...” I thought to myself. It looked the exact same as the school I visited in my dreams. This can’t be a coincidence. I must see it for myself.
It’s been a week and one day since I passed the building on my bike. It was Monday now. Curiosity got the better of me as I was interested in seeing the interior of the building.
The morning was breezy and chilly with cloudy skies. I couldn’t believe what I was doing. I was driving in my car to a school I saw in my dreams. It didn’t take too long to arrive since there was less traffic in the morning. It was almost 8 AM when I arrived at the parking lot of the school and there were a couple of other cars parked there. “Last time it was empty. There should be people inside” I thought.
At first, my plan was that I wasn’t going to enter. I was just going to look through the windows on the doors. Just to see what the inside looked like. This place seemed like a school for small children that I had no business entering.
I walked to the entrance with the glass doors. Honestly, I felt like a creep, but I really wanted to look inside, while hoping there wasn’t a cop around being suspicious of me.
I put my forehead on the glass of the door, with my hands covering the sides of my face to see better. As soon as I got close enough to the glass, I saw nothing but heard everything. With my eyes, I saw an empty hall. With my ears, I heard hundreds of voices.
“Wait... where are these noises coming from?” I thought as I kept looking around. These sounds were so audible that it sounded like people were on the other side of the door. Yet, I didn’t see anyone. Just a long hallway with the lights off. There were doors on the sides. All closed. There was even debris on the floor. The place looked ruined and abandoned. Yet, the sound of walking, shuffling, talking, and shouting were still audible.
It was all so spooky. I felt like my mind was playing tricks on me. Something inside me begged me to open the doors and walk around. Was that the right thing to do? This was all unnerving and mysterious and I felt like I had to go inside. At least to just walk a couple of feet.
Again, I looked around behind me to see if anyone was looking. While my head was turned toward the outside, I slowly opened the doors and entered when there was enough space to get in. As soon as I was in, I turned my head forward again and I did not expect to see what was in front of me.
Like magic, the once empty hall was now sprawling with people. Hundreds of them appeared seemingly out of thin air. The lights were on, the floor was clean, and people were going in and out of classrooms. I couldn’t tell what age they were. They all looked somewhere between middle and high school.
“What the fuck. Where am I?” I whispered. I looked down at my hands to make sure this wasn’t one of those dreams. I opened and closed my fists. I pinched myself and it hurt. Sure enough, it was real life.
I stood in that same spot for about a minute just watching everyone walk. When that minute was up, I realized there were less and less people out in the hallway. I saw the last few hurrying to where they needed to be as the last classroom door closed.
In just a few moments, I was alone in the hallway with the buzz of the fluorescent lights. The walls were half white at the bottom, and half red at the top. It looked so liminal like the hallways in my dreams. This wasn’t a dream, though.
I began walking down the hall. I passed by classrooms that had small square windows on the doors that I couldn’t see through.
It was almost silent now with no noise besides my footsteps. I checked my phone for the time. It was 8:15AM. I noticed I didn’t have signal at all. “What? ...why don’t I have service?” I thought to myself.
Once I got to the end of the hallway, I saw that it split into two other hallways. I looked deep into each hallway and they both looked the same. Not knowing where to go I thought, “Okay. That’s enough. Time to leave.”
I did a 180 degree turn to go back the way I came. I didn’t even take a third step when I heard a door open intensely and a harsh voice say “oh THERE he is. OUT in the HALLS and not in CLASS. HEY. YOUNG MAN. You better get in this classroom RIGHT NOW.”
I was startled by that voice. It broke the silence so abruptly that I jumped. It was a fat old lady with a wrinkled and scrunched face. She had curly gray hair and glasses.
I just stared at her for a moment. Then I tried to speak, “... I- I'm sorry, I’m uh... not-”
“YOU HAVEN’T SHOWED UP TO A SINGLE CLASS. Do you have ANY idea how much TROUBLE YOU’RE IN?” she boomed.
I sounded like a mouse compared to her. “L-look I... I think you uh... got the wrong per-”
“GET IN HERE.” she grew angrier. “GET IN THIS CLASSROOM RIGHT NOW.”
I stopped my little muttering and began to walk backwards. The lady then vigorously swung open the classroom door so hard it hit the wall as she speed-walked in my direction with such an aggravated look on her face.
Now, I’m not short, but I’m also not tall. I’m 5’8”. But compared to this lady, she made me look like a third grader. She was gigantic. Probably more than 7 feet tall.
I didn’t know what she was going to do. I walked backwards first and then tried turning around. Before I could make a complete turn, I felt a strong grip on my wrist and my motion stopped completely. I looked down at my wrist and saw a fat hand around it. I struggled hard to break free from the grasp, but I was swiftly pulled in the old lady’s direction.
No matter how much I struggled, I couldn’t break away. The old lady was dragging me toward the classroom.
“WHAT... THE HELL. HEY. ERGHHH LET GO OF ME!” I yelled.
“YOU DAMN TROUBLESOME KID. GO TO YOUR SEAT!” She pulled me up into the air, suspended by my shirt, and threw me into the classroom.
I hit the floor with a hard thud. My elbow and knees took the most impact as I was slow to get up. Pain hit my legs hard as I got back on my two feet and heard the door shut firmly.
The old lady that just got done manhandling me took a heavy sigh and said, “OKAY. Now we have a full class. That makes Miss Howler happy.” She took a seat at the big desk in the front. After sitting down, she looked over at me with an angry and confused expression.
“Why are you still standing there? Get to YOUR SEAT.”
I was frozen but my eyes darted around the room. I looked at the students. The class was indeed full. I looked at their faces and they were all grinning and looking straight.
My observation of the class was interrupted by the loud slam of Miss Howler’s fat fist on her desk.
“I SAID GO TO YOUR SEAT. RIGHT NOW!!!” she yelled.
I didn’t know what to do. Should I make a run for it? Or should I just sit like the teacher said and just get it over with? I didn’t want to risk being thrown again so I went to the back of the classroom where I saw an empty seat. I sat down and still couldn’t believe what was going on. This felt like a nightmare I couldn’t wake up from.
I looked around me. Everyone was still looking straight forward. Miss Howler was sitting at her desk again sorting some papers.
“How did I get myself into this mess? And how long will this all take?” I thought. Then, Miss Howler got up from her desk and walked over to the first student sitting in the front row. From where I was, I could see she was passing a packet of papers to each student.
“OKAY. Take one and pass it backwards, please. What you will all receive momentarily is our next assignment. Read through it carefully” she said.
The student sitting in front of me passed a packet over his shoulder for me to grab.
“Surely, I won’t be needing this” I thought while placing it on my desk. I read the words at the top.
ORGANIC CHEMISTRY 101 – ASSIGNMENT 8
The title was the only thing I understood. The rest of the page was just a bunch of science jargon. The questions were all based on equations with more letters than numbers.
“Like always, have this completed by the end of the week. Late work WILL NOT give you full credit... OHHH... SPEAKING of LATE WORK” Howler turned around and grabbed something beneath her desk. When she turned back around, she looked at me over the top of her glasses.
“YOU. Young man. Come here. Now.” Howler pointed at me and wriggled her finger, motioning for me to come up to the front of the class.
Nervously, I got up and walked past the many students that were still smiling and looking forward. I don’t think I ever saw them blink. When I got to Howler’s desk, she had a neat stack of papers probably about a foot high.
“Take your work and SIT down,” said Howler while glaring at me. Before anything else I grabbed the packet on the top of the stack. I looked at the top, ORGANIC CHEMISTRY LESSONS 1-127. I quickly turned around and walked back towards my seat before Howler slammed her fist again.
“WHERE ARE YOU GOING?”
I turned around slowly and nervously. “Wh- what?”
“WHY DID YOU ONLY TAKE THE ONE? YOU THINK THIS IS FUNNY?!?
“Umm... no. Look, I’m not supposed to be here” I said. “How DARE YOU. COME TAKE THE REST OF YOUR WORK,” she yelled. “I... okay,” I said as I walked back. I didn’t know that the whole stack was for me. As I reached for the stack, my vision went all white.
In an instant, white papers flew everywhere around me like a hurricane. Howler had bashed the stack with the back of her fat hand so hard that none of them were on the desk anymore. As the last page hit the floor she said, “You have SOME NERVE trying to joke around with ME. YOU’VE GOT SOME NERVE. Now PICK IT UP”.
I thought, “there’s no way I’m going to pick all of this up. This is ridiculous. I must leave. I can make a run for it from here”.
Before picking up a single page, I rushed to the door, pulled on the knob violently and turned it both ways. Sadly, it wouldn’t give. It was locked from the inside. Once I realized this, I felt something towering over me from behind. A shadow loomed over the door.
“Where do you think YOU’RE GOING? I cannot BELIEVE THIS. IN ALL MY YEARS YOU ARE THE WORST”.
I was still facing the door. Disappointed that I couldn’t leave. Suddenly, my neck tightened, and I felt like I was choking. I was pulled backwards. My shirt's collar fell tight as I realized I was being pulled by the back of my collar.
Then I was airborne and fell onto the bed of papers on the floor.
“I SAID PICK THEM UP. I WON’T ASK YOU AGAIN. DO IT NOW!!!!!!” Howler was the angriest she’d ever been so far.
I had no other choice but to pick them up and put them back in a stack. As I was placing them in a pile, I saw bright red dot appear on the white of a page. “Blood?” I thought. Then a few seconds later another drop. I placed my hand on my cheek, and it stung. My fingers were red from touching it. When Howler bashed the paper stack, I must have gotten a paper cut.
Once I was done stacking, I lifted it up and went to my seat. Then Howler began teaching. I can’t remember a single word she said while teaching. It was all chemistry, and I didn’t know a thing about it. All I knew was that I had to get out of there. I needed a reason.
But then she said, “Alright. Any questions?”
I shot my hand up before any of the five other students could. As soon as I did, Howler looked at me and said, “Yes, YOU.”
“Uh... may I use the bathroo-”
“NO. PAY ATTENTION.”
“Please. I just need some paper for this cut on my face.”
She glared at me so hard. I was starting to regret even asking. It felt like I made a huge mistake for even raising my hand at all.
To my surprise she said, “FINE. But don’t think for a SECOND that I’m just going to let you WALK OUT OF HERE by yourself. I’m NOT stupid.”
She looked at the student right in front of her. “James. Please escort your fellow student to the restroom.”
I immediately got up and walked towards the front. James stood up and turned to me. He had short blond hair, green eyes, and was still smiling even when looking at me. “Yes ma’am.” He said in a proud voice. James walked in front of me.
Before we got to the door, I froze as we heard, “LISTEN. You BETTER be back here in TWO MINUTES. BOTH OF YOU. DO NOT waste my time. GO.”
With that, James turned the doorknob. Surprisingly, it opened. How did it open so easily for him?
James and I exited the classroom. Just being out of it felt like freedom. My cut was still dripping blood. I then spoke, “Hey James. What is this place? What’s going on?”
“This is our school. Where have you been this whole time?” He replied. He would not stop smiling.
“What do you mean?” I said, “I’ve never been inside this school before.”
He said, “Yes you have.”
When we got to the bathroom, I quickly got some paper towels and placed them on my cheek. James then said, “Okay. Let’s go back now” as he turned around and headed for the door.
My stomach ached at the thought of going back into that classroom. I was already through with being there. “Hey James, you go on ahead I’ll be in the classroom soon,” I said while opening a stall door.
James stopped before opening the door. “I don’t think we should keep Miss Howler waiting any longer,”
I entered the stall and said, “I really, really, have to use the toilet pretty badly. It’s going to take a while. Please, go ahead and return. I’ll take the blame, James”. With that, I closed the stall door and locked it.
I waited for a response. There was no sound coming from the outside of the stall. James had gone quiet. I was looking down in the opening of the stall under the door. These two neat shoes appeared. I was starting to get creeped out. “Umm... James?” I spoke.
Then, suddenly, blond hair was appearing under the stall door slowly. The neat shoes were still there and hadn’t moved. I kept my eyes on the blond hair as it moved down ever so slightly. I saw a forehead, then eyebrows, then green eyes.
“What the fuck...” I whispered.
It was James’ head. It was upside down. His head kept lowering slowly as his nose was now visible. Then his mouth was coming into full view. He was grinning cheek to cheek like always. I was about to scream my lungs out.
Then he said, “It’s time to go back”.
I will end it here for now. There’s so much more to this occurrence than I can write in one post. I will continue in the next one.
They’re discharging my dad and I’m trying to decide whether he should go back to the SNF he was at or shop around and see what options we have.
The main reason is because he needs a speech pathologist to rehab his swallowing because he was choking on phlegm with Covid so they did a barium test and it seems he can still handle medium and thick items but silently aspirates thin liquids.
The place he’s been for 9 weeks won’t have a speech therapist until the end of the month. The last one was disengaged, only came a couple times a week and abruptly quit.
The problem is, my dad has an undiagnosed anxiety OCD so when he gets food in front of him he shovels it in and forgets to swallow. He’s always done this. It’s weird to watch, it’s like he zones out and he will eat the entire container until it’s gone without a rest. He’s always eaten weirdly. I tried to explain this to them and they disregard me. Given his condition, this is a really bad habit to still have.
So I’m considering becoming his unofficial speech therapist where I show them to not give him ice chips anymore, and to only give him small portions of puréed food, like maybe one spoonful every ten minutes and regulate his intake. And then when the new hire comes in I will have made some progress.
My only other option is to struggle with finding another facility that will accept him and I’ve heard speech therapists are in super short supply right now. He needs full 24/7 care as he’s bedbound. He’s a major choking and aspiration hazard and I feel bad laying this on someone new, but our other situation is that he’s going to run out of Medicare in about two months and refuses to get Medicaid. The current place doesn’t take Medicaid anyway. By then we might need hospice though.
Idk, I feel like I already decided but any input for something I didn’t think about would be great.
It's really fucking annoying to barely sleep only for a few minutes of REM at a time and wake up with a soaked shirt 5 times a night. And the smell , not from bathing but the sweet &sour booze musty smell that permeates every molecule in a room.
So I just get up to do 2 weeks worth of laundry I used in 3 days and sit outside in the sun and drink left over microwaved coffee someone made hours ago...forced sweating seems to speed up this shit for me.
my 15 yr old dog is on her way out , getting closer everyday now these last months. She's not in pain but she is very tired of life now more often.
I've prepared for the day for a while now. It's still gonna fuckn sting when she does. But she's had a great life.
If I was reincarnated I'd want to be a dog that's treated as she has been in life that much I do know.
It's a nice day out but I'm a sleep deprived musty goblin, a complete 180 from a couple weeks ago... How long has it been now...
no amount of showers will remedy this temporary sweatathon theres no booze on the menu today but I'm trying To be kind to myself as everyone here should.
Go hug your dog, cat , iguana , a stray , a tree , just don't hug a stranger or something idk.
35F. FTM. On 2nd trimester already (24 weeks) but nausea never ceases. On some occasional days I get really bad nausea and can't bear to eat anything at all entire day even though im hungry but could maybe stomach some junk food or sweet foods (chocolate biscuits, sweet pastries, ice cream) and sweet drinks (honey tea or fruit juice). But I'm afraid I may get gestational diabetes if I eat too much junk or sweet stuff. Would it be better if I just don't eat at all for that day and go hungry instead? This happens at least once every one to two weeks. Sometimes when I feel well and can eat, I'll eat normally, and sometimes would eat slightly more than usual (for example i would add on soup or additional finger food or sides like side salad etc). I do take prescribed prenatal vitamins and diclectin for nausea.
I live far from Oxford now and can’t make it to a physical store, but I’m wanting some nice Ole Miss polos (think something you could wear to the Grove or on a more casual work day). Maybe mens t shirts as well.
I’ve looked at Rebel Rags and really like some of their products but $75+ seems a bit high. Has anyone had luck with similarly good products in the $50 range?
Was creating some worlds in the new 1.20 update and this seed was a pretty cool one to start in
Cherry biome spawn, cool deep world generation with a ice/snow mountain right next to you
Personally im really struggling at the moment to not overcomplicate shifting.. mostly because i question „okay but evolutionary wise, how would this make sense“
it just wouldnt make sense to me that somehow you can fly?? like how?? and also genuinely like how did we go from monkey to develop ice power or whatever in that reality.. yk?
I have been with my boyfriend for more than a year now. We do not live together but I have travelled with him once before. He has seen me naked many times since we have sex pretty often.
This is the second time a travel with him and we were in a very small Airbnb, so. i would walk around with my towel and then change in front of my suitcase which was in the living-room but the airbnb is a tiny studio so you would see me from anywhere but it was just me and him in the apartment. I would also put underwear (bra and undies) on and do my makeup not fully clothed since I don’t want to stain my clothes. He kept making comments like “you’re such a nudist I hate that, I like modest people” “you like nudity too much” but I was just comfortable enough to do the same as I do at home it was nothing sexual I just didn’t want to stain my clothes and since the apartment was so small I changed in the living-room…
The next night, we switched to a hotel room for the last night of the trip. I was feeling super uncomfortable in bed and all my sleeping tops were dirty and I only had the one I had left to sleep with but it felt super itchy and uncomfortable and I wasn’t able to sleep. So I asked him “do you feel comfortable if I sleep topless? I really can’t sleep this top is super itchy. Does it bother you? Or I could wear one of your t-shirts but they’re huge I feel like it strangles me when I sleep”
He answered “It’s weird, I hate that I don’t like nudity I like prudishness and modesty”
So I took one of his t shirts and went to sleep, but I couldn’t help but feel super weird about his comments. Am I not understanding enough?
In the morning he tried to makeout and remove my top so we could have sex but I was really in my head about his comments and was a bit turned off… So we ended up not doing anything. I feel a bit guilty for ruining that moment.
I truly want him to feel comfortable with me, what should I do to make this situation better?
also please excuse my english as it is not my first language