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Recently finished writing the prologue of my 6-part science fantasy series:

Spoiler

There once was a civilization not unlike ours that believed they were brought into existence by divine beings known only as the Makers. These people lived on a planet known as Nelthora, a moderately Earth-like world that was home to many different sentient races; not just humans, but also elves, orcs, ogres, trolls, fairies, and various others, some similar to those described in Earth mythology and some completely alien. Another thing separating it from Earth was that it was a haven for the arcane arts, similar to those described in Earth fiction, and it was more technologically advanced by several millenia, yet at the same time its peoples adhered to a balance of science and magic that allowed for more extraordinary feats than with the two being kept separate; interplanetary travel, effortless treatment of diseases that have plagued many on Earth, advanced automatons, plasma-based weaponry, manipulation of time, space and supernatural forces, and many other feats previously thought impossible. If you couldn't find it on Earth, you most likely could find it on Nelthora.

In the region of Toriana, the humans ruled most of the west, and for many years was safeguarded by the Argent Inquisition, a peacekeeper organization formed of both glory-seeking adventurers and devout patriots. Their society was dwarfed by the star elven Centauri Empire in the east, which was ruled by House Alga and its current patriarch Tark'Alga, better known by the moniker Algol; star elves traditionally were born with a first name and a surname based on words in the language of Old Nelthoran, separated by an apostrophe, and often took on a new name when they came of age, typically a celestial phenomenon or object, but there was nothing preventing them from retaining their birth name, or naming themselves after another noun or a human first name. From their immaculate palace in the star elven capital of Asterwall, House Alga glowered upon the other elf races: the fire elves, forest elves and drow (dark elves) in the south, the metal, sand and sun elves in the west, and the frost elves in the north. House Alga was not always the leaders of the star elves, as they were preceded by House Re; Alga obtained their lofty position following their discreet regicide against Re's patriarch Kava'Re, better known as Deneb, as star elves had a malignant history of infighting and backstabbing between their noble houses.

Nelthora was no stranger to war, and had many in the past. While for a long time the races of Nelthora had no open hostility toward each other, one year that changed. The metal elves, in their infinite knowledge, had unveiled an automaton with a highly-advanced AI that they claimed had near-infinite uses. When the star elves demanded the automaton as a tribute, the metal elves refused, which the star elves took as an insult, and they branded the metal elves as enemies. Thus began a civil war, wherein the metal elves allied with the drow and fire elves, while the star elves won the support of the forest elves. Meanwhile, the frost, sand and sun elves refused to take a side, until the star elves expanded their campaign's reach and attacked the humans, who then allied with the metal elves, leading to the sun elves following the humans to maintain their 30-year friendship. Though much of the events that transpired during the war have been lost to history, it is primarily thought that after several months of fighting, the war ended with Algol's defeat and deposition, an uneasy peace being formed between the star elves and the other elf tribes, and the Inquisition continuing to operate until one day it disbanded for unknown reasons.

Years later, Nelthora's bloody past would be glossed over to turn the planet into a hotspot for offworlders, primarily tourists looking for a place to spend their vacations, adventurers seeking a chance at wealth and glory, and people who simply wanted to make a new life away from Earth's ever-growing hatred and corruption. On Earth, a group of individuals would become part of the latter group, but soon enough would get more than they signed on for.

The first few chapters will be about the main characters starting off with their own personal storylines before they meet.

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I wrote part of this song a few weeks ago

Spoiler
I have all the charms
That conceal my lies
And now that I'm armed
I'll leave you to die
You profess your innocent
But you're not legitimate
And now that I triumph
I'll leave you to be damned
 
Keep telling yourself you're above suspicion
You may be so, but I can keep you cooked up
You'll set yourself on fire
And say that you're untainted
But trust me, i'm cunning
Your honesty will fall out of the clear
 
I swear i'm pristine
This low-down is impure
He may be that convincing
But the truth is he's unpleasing
You say you're an idol
But the truth is you're a false god
But soon I will triumph
And I'll leave you to suffer through the weight

I have yet to actually finish it though, i've  been on a long vacation and haven't had time to songwrite.

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Started writing this in the "In Hell" Topic elsewhere on YouChew, but I quickly realised it was too serious for that. So here ya'll go.

Spoiler

In Hell, you fall.

 

Whatever light surrounds you when you die, that is your only source of light. It is from here that you begin your eternal descent. You slip beneath the surface like it were thin air and the light of the world grows smaller until only the void remains.

 

Nothing slows your fall in hell, you only ever speed up, and you feel the full force of your descent. Your skin ripples as if it were a silk sheet, it strains, and stretches, and rips only to reveal another fresh layer.

The rest of your insides meet a similar fate. Bones crack, muscles twist and tear, organs rupture and your skull tightens agains your brain.

This is the only thing you ever hear. And the further you fall, the more it intensifies, both the pain and the noise, always growing more intense as every second of eternity scrapes past.

But you cannot even scream in pain. You keep spinning until you cannot move your limbs, nor breathe, nor sleep.

Your mind and body is reduced to a husk. You feel nothing but pain. And yet, your body never gives in to the torture, it always resists just enough to never die.

 

In Hell, you never break.

Your torment escalates but your mind? That will always be on the knife-edge of insanity.

You cannot even retreat into madness.

In Hell, you are only sane.

And there's nothing you can do but fall...

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Wrote this short review for Letterboxd on Christmas Day

Spoiler

Olive the Other Reindeer (1999) Review:

Even though I'm 26 years old, I can't help but have a soft spot for some Christmas specials I saw as a kid. This is one of those specials that I have said spot for, and it happens to be produced by the same man behind everyone's favorite jaundis-skinned family "The Simpsons" and the animated sci-fi comedy "Futurama".

Based on the children's book by J. Otto Seibold and Vivian Walsh, this TV special focuses on a small dog named Olive (Drew Barrymore), who hears a radio broadcast where Santa mentions he's cancelling Christmas due to Blitzen hurting his leg. However, when Santa mentions "all of the other reindeer", Olive mis-hears it as "Olive, the other reindeer" (hence the title), and thus, she treks her way to the North Pole with her penguin buddy Martini (Joe Pantoliano) to take Blitzen's place for the year, all while an irate postman (Dan "Homer Simpson" Castellaneta) chases her down so he can prevent Christmas from happening.

Now I fondly remember watching this one time on Cartoon Network, back when I watched that channel religiously, and I remember thoroughly enjoying it. Watching it as an adult, as silly as the plot is, I can say it's rather innocent family entertainment that anyone can smile at if they're in the right mood. The 2D-on-3D animation is really not that bad for a television special, it's only an hour long, and there are a few catchy songs thrown in for good measure.

It's not the best Christmas special out there, and the art style might turn some people off, but if you give it a chance, it's rather harmless. For me, I kinda like it, and I think a lot of kids and adults today will still enjoy it around the holiday season. I say give it a watch.

...and wrote this other short review on Homer Groening's short film A Study in Wet the day after...

Spoiler

A Study in Wet (1964) Review:

You might be familiar with the Christmas TV special "Olive, The Other Reindeer", produced by Matt Groening. If not, you might also be familiar with Matt Groening's other project, the mildly raunchy sci-fi comedy series "Futurama". If you stuck around after the end credits of either one of these, you saw the a logo with the words "The Curiosity Company", which is Mr. Groening's production company. It also featured a rather odd image of a rippling water reflection, complete with a dripping water sound. If you wanted to know where all those weird sound effects and visuals in the logo came from, here is your answer.

"A Study in Wet" is a 1964 short experimental film by Matt's father, Homer Groening, consisting of water reflections, surfing footage, and the sound of water dripping into a bathtub, as he points out around 50 seconds in. We aren't given a rather logical reason as to why he filmed this, other than the fact that some of us "haven't really listened to water" or really observed its behavior. Regardless, what we are left with is a somewhat mesmerizing and trippy experience for a whole six minutes, and I can't help but be reminded of a David Lynch short film while watching this.

There are filmmakers who only want to tell a story or take you on a unique experience that will change the way you look at life. Then there are filmmakers who only make certain movies, simply because they can. "A Study in Wet" would most likely fall in the latter category. I'm pretty sure there's a deeper meaning behind it all (if there even is one) but I can't find it. All I can say is, it's a memorable piece with unique composition fit for an art museum.

 

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A man orders a sandwich at a sandwich store, it's a BLT, the man bites the sandwich and finds out it has Miracle Whip instead of Mayo, the man can't return a bitten sandwich.

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I danced my heart away

to forget what happened yesterday

I don’t know what to do or say

but it doesn’t matter anyway

I’ve gone off now to do my own thing

cause all we were was just a fling

no matter what we say it won’t change anything

cause I was just your plaything

I tried to change and make it right

but all I did amounted to a blight

it may not be all black and white

but it never mattered the height

we went together to the top

but I’ve decided to stop

and give up

after this holdup

what could I ever do

to ensure you

that we were meant to be

nothing, I can see

I thought I knew you and all your vices

but you couldn’t see all my sacrifices

I gave you all I could

why couldn’t you see the good, in us

the thing we had could have been so great

if only we could abate

all our demons and shortcomings

but I see now that there was nothing

know I’ll never forget

no I’ll never make a threat

but I’ll always regret

having met you

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I know it hasn't been easy

but love never could be

it's not a thing we can all give

but know that mine will outlive

I've done things I'm unsure to say

can or ever will go away

the way I've hurt you was unjust

but I have to tell you, I must

it's conflicting and bizarre

but I cannot be happy unless you are

that's why my pain is so severe

so I dont want us to just suffer here

we learned of each other warts and all

but don't try to catch me if I fall

I would much rather persist

so you know my love will always exist

What I did then was not me

filled with contempt and jealousy

feeling so sorry for myself

but I will put it back on the shelf

I'll do for you all that I can

I will own up and be a man

but if you should want to be free

I don't expect you to forgive me

somehow someway I will go on

but at the wake of every dawn

I'll remember all my debts

filled with all of my regrets

for letting an angel like you go

I have hit an all time low

no one's ever loved me like you

so please tell me that you still do

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Been writing this MGSV fanfic about Huey Emmerich and his downward spiral post-1984. Progress has been slow in coming because of school work, but I'm extremely proud of how it's come out for it being my first ever fanfic.

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You know that story something I started doing ages ago? Guess what, in true me fashion I'm not happy with how it was going and I've recently started it over again, giving it a more conventional sci-fi grounding. That said, I've been writing a sort of note-y prologue I can use to make an actual prologue later. Major changes thus far are to planet name and location and some more backstory.

Spoiler

The story is shared between Earth and Nuova-Reytov (serial number M-748126b). The latter is a planet in reasonably parallel orbit to Earth – at the start of each cycle they are but Nuova-Reytov is further from the Sun. So years last longer and winters are colder. Seasons often differ between the planets. Sometimes it’s winter on Nuova-Reytov but spring on Earth etc. 456-day years, 38 day months, 30 hour days. Every other year is a leap year and March gains a 39th day.

As may be drawn from this, Nuova-Reytov have adopted the Gregorian calendar but adapted it to their own planet in relation to Earth. The planet appeared in the Milky Way about 10 years before the story begins. While apprehension was nigh on the Earth side at first, it was discovered the inhabitants of this new planet were far more technologically advanced than those of Earth.

Over the ten years before the story begins, first contact was made and it was discovered that the appearance of the new planet was no coincidence – the more diplomatic inhabitants spoke very good English and could communicate with Earth leaders. The planet had appeared because of an accidental malfunction in new teleportation technology, strong enough to transport entire planets at once. The target had been somewhere in the Andromeda galaxy. The inhabitants had picked up their knowledge of English through documents gained via similar technology. Eventually leaders from the two planets began to form a working relationship. Later, the citizens of Nuova-Reytov were made welcome on Earth, in an attempt to use their technological knowledge to help both planets.

Nowadays, the planet Nuova-Reytov is largely one supercontinent – but with some islands surrounding it. There are nine main regions – Amon (the cosmopolitan, social capital of the planet), Xeflos (the technological powerhouse), Caspax (the scientific centre of the planet), Oscon (the agricultural and farming region), Drasau (mostly uninhabitable yet with a stunning history), Laclos (cold, sparse, yet tight-knit), Floeso (tropical and humid), Stoelia (cold, yet aspirational) and the capital region, Athos (rich, state-of the art, and home to the imperial capital, Niewe-Heihoek). There also exists the three clusters of islands – the Uplar Islands (modern, progressive, liberal and pacifist), the Thoca Islands (the centre for religion and education) and the Revik Islands (technologically and socially conservative, but with a strong military might).

All of these regions have their strengths – explaining why they have all come together to pool their resources and create a single, United Republic of Gallarcia. The planet is extremely cohesive and almost all of the regions get along in 95% of circumstances. This is aided by the fact that many people believe in the same things – namely, equality and freedom. There is also only one religion in the United Republic, that being the native religion of Bëism. Its core teaching are that the world was created by seven gods and goddesses, all with individual traits and skills; there was Daerius (the bold and brave), Juinope (the intelligent and strategic), Besimov (the creative and flamboyant), Coscora (the quiet yet defiant), Scauwen (the methodical yet reckless), Xeren (the headstrong, yet resentful) and Xerellia (the confident, and motherly, yet easily angered). The stories go that once the world had been created, and the lifeforms sculpted, one in each god’s image, they all ruled the world together, with multiple disagreements. While each God was not allowed on the planet themselves, they could “choose” individuals to influence, and test. Xeren ultimately broke this rule, once taking a corporeal form and living on the planet for a while. He was exiled by the other gods for this, though some say he still exists today, plotting his revenge on the world and the gods who exiled him – even his sister, Xerellia, who took pity on her brother…

 

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I sang that old song again

to remind me of what we were then

why couldn't it be so

we know it never would be though

I can't stop needing you

but you'll never say that you do too

so

I've got to stop this now

won't someone show me how


I've spun this web in my mind

a hell only I designed

will I ever be able to climb

forget all our past times


or will I keep on sinking

feeling without thinking

in the meantime I'd best leave

better than to grieve, over what we were


won't you tell me someday

why you went away

was I all that bad

just tell me what we had, wasn't a lie

cause neither of us want to cry

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Wrote this earlier today for the Discord I hang around on. Not sure if I'll post this on Reddit.

Spoiler

The Penguins lost the game in regulation. Outside of two goals from Kuhnhackl and Crosby, the entire team looked lost that afternoon.

The players panicked on the inside once the timer hit zero. Head coach Mike Sullivan always had some horrific way of punishing the Penguins when they lost. He walked ahead of the players to the locker room. None of them could see his face as they all stepped from the dim hallway into the well-lit locker room.

Sullivan stood in the corner facing away as the players collectively sat down. He remained perfectly still as the players sat in awkward silence. A few of them fidgeted with their sticks as the silence continued.

They remembered the brutal training regimen he would put them through each time they had an embarrassing loss. They remembered when he would scream his lungs out at them. They remembered when he would lose his temper over the team losing the game... before it even ended that one time.

Sullivan inhaled, breaking the silence in the room, then exhaled. He turned to face everybody, revealing a calm face.

"Team," he began to say in a somber way, "I'm disappointed in you guys."

The players collectively gasped. Crosby was shaking, Murray bit his lip, Bonino's eyes were bulging, and Letang was sweating bullets. They knew something was wrong. Coach Sullivan never acted like this after a loss.

He cracked a smirk. Everybody flinched.

"My previous punishments didn't work on you guys," Sullivan spoke. "There was that blowout to the Blue Jackets, there was that pathetic effort against the Wild, there was that loss to the Capitals, and now two blowouts against the Red Wings."

He held up a finger on his hand for each of the games he was talking about. All the players remained silent except for their faint breathing, hoping not to draw any attention.

"That's five really bad losses," Sullivan said as he put his hand down. "But I have a perfect punishment I was saving for the sixth awful loss, and now I can use it."

Coach Sullivan stepped near the locker room entrance and opened it. A bearded, blond man walked in with a microphone in his hand. Others stepped in with guitars and a drum set.

"Some of you may know these guys from the band Nickelback," Sullivan said as he sealed the door shut. The band took time to settle in with their instruments. They only spent too much time setting up the drums.

"This is what you get when you don't try hard enough," Sullivan grunted, finally letting his anger show on his face. He pulled ear plugs from his pocket and put them securely into his head. "Now you get to look at this photograph!"

Coach Sullivan cackled with glee as the band started playing.

 

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Beneath my feet I see

two shadows cast before me

from the lights against my back

they continue to stack

the darkest one stands out

the most prominent of my doubts


if I just turned around

I could avoid this breakdown

but these silhouettes I see

they seem to understand me

moving along as I do

no one else knows who

it is who walks this path


this sad road I know

just going with the flow

never challenging the fates

just standing at these gates

I could smash them if I tried

but these shadows at my backside

they call me


it's easy to just go along

ignore and forget my lifelong

but what's it gonna amount to

when I look back and think of you

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I wrote this joke thing about The Wiggles driving shitfaced drunk for whatever reason

Spoiler

We were driving drunk in our big red car
When all of a sudden we must've gone too far
Cause we ended up plummeting 3,000 feet to certain doom
But for whatever strange reason, we managed to bloom
The only side effect is now we have no arms
So we can't wave to Wags or move them like Henry
All we can do is watch Feathersword and Dorothy take the stage
This is how it ends, all because Lachy put us downstage

Don't end up like them, kids

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