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Gotta play Empathy: Path of Whispers




What is real? Who is genuine? With her usual tenacity, she follows the trails of deception and terror. What she discovers will change her world forever. -































"From down there our lifeless ears might still enjoy the sounds of Vivaldi performed in St. Stephen’s Cathedral."
















I'll be @ the Explorers Club in on Sept. 5 speaking about our neighborhood (pictured) as a platform for explorations in geography, science & story! @freddiewilkinson & Mike Sfraga will also be joining me. Join us!! -Robert












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I have eleven notes in my phone about my story, one of which is just the definition of psychometry, another which is a cowboy saying “you’ve yee’d your last haw”

Prompt

“Whatever you want. Name and it will be yours, all you have to do is join me.”

The hero hesitated they knew they shouldn’t but as the looked at the villain they couldn’t help feel swayed.

“Anything?” They asked.

The villain smirked, knowing they’d won before the hero had even submitted. “Anything.”

Ci sono momenti in cui ho bisogno di staccarmi da tutto. Di parcheggiare la macchina nel punto più isolato e accendere la nostra canzone preferita. La canzone con cui abbiamo fatto l'amore. E piangere. Piangere fino ad avere gli occhi rossi e il respiro irregolare. Poi mi asciugo e faccio finta che questo momento non sia mai successo, ma sto meglio, perché piangere in alcuni casi è davvero liberatorio. Nessun amico, nessuna consolazione, solo ed esclusivamente voglia di piangere per quello che siamo stati e per quello che non saremo più.

-PURAVIDA

2

Hi, this is Jerriii he lived in my apartment for almost two weeks and made me think that hallucinating is a more logical answer than “there was a fguCKING MOUSE IN MY ApArTmEnT!!!”

He hates being in jail right now and is keeping me awake trying to brake out. The first time I saw him was at around 3 am entering from my balcony and running over to my tv cabinet. I just saw a shadowy silhouette that vaguely resembled a mouse, so logically my brain was like “you saw nothing, when you checked under it, must have been a hallucination”.

I believed that till I found more solid evidence Jerriii left me, so my mom made jokes on my expense, after I told her and got me his jail cell - that I had to fix, bc the stupid thing didn’t wanna work right!

Anyway it says probably a lot about me that I rather believe that I hallucinate now, than being in this very real situation.

8.12

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It looked like Andy was going to let them have their rooms for another night, even if Friday was still in the lobby bartering to make it happen. Harry Digby had paid them in several bushels of apples, instead of real coin, so Friday was giving Andy the hard sell. She’d sent Val to his room with the promise that they weren’t going to be evicted, and the instruction not to waste too much of the water, so she could wash up after. Well, that wouldn’t be a problem. Val was too exhausted to bathe, or to do much more than drag himself down the hall and crawl into bed.

Unfortunately for Val, there was a woman in his room.

It was the woman who had been at the hotel bar last night, Val was almost certain, though he hadn’t seen her face to face until now. She had shiny black hair tied in a loose ponytail, and her shirt was untucked, like she’d been on the way to sleep, herself. She was sitting on Val’s bed like she owned it, legs crossed, one foot bouncing gently against the opposite leg.

“Finally,” she said, as Val opened the door. “I thought I was going to have to wait all night for you to get back. You’re a priest, aren’t you? I saw your shirt hanging up to dry, with the collar.”

“Uh, yes,” Val said, shutting the door behind him, and toeing off his shoes. Maybe he should have been afraid, to find a stranger in his room, but if the woman was looking for a priest…well, she probably didn’t mean much harm. Oklahoma City didn’t seem to have a church of any kind, so it made a certain amount of sense that she had come to him. “How can I help you, miss…?”

“Ueno,” the woman said. “I came to confess, actually, if you have the time. I could use some…” She hummed, thoughtfully. “Let’s say spiritual guidance, with something I’ve been dealing with lately.”

“I have the time,” Val said, though he didn’t, not strictly. But he could always make time to hear a confession, he told himself. Especially for someone who’d professed to be looking for guidance.

“Great,” Ueno said, and made the sign of the cross. “In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. My last confession was…oh, probably ten years ago. I don’t know.”

Val raised his eyebrows. “You’ve lapsed.”

“I’ve been busy,” she corrected him smoothly. “And it’s hard to find a priest who will take you when you’re upper management of an organized crime conglomerate. Which is confession number one, by the way, if you’d like to keep count.”

Val felt his eyebrows creep farther up his forehead, and a deep sense of exhaustion washed over him, even deeper than the one he’d felt while trudging towards his room. Apparently this night was going to be without end. He exhaled heavily and sat down on the floor, unwilling to get his muddy clothes on the bedsheets. Judging by the way Ueno’s lips quirked upwards at the corners, it amused her.

“Are you tired of me already?” she asked.

“No,” Val said. “It’s been an especially tiring night. Go on, please.”

“Well, I like to think that my organization runs like a well-oiled machine. I barely do anything besides sit at a desk and sign papers and give marching orders over the phone, but enough people respect my name and position that they take orders without question. It gets the job done. You see, I don’t really like to get my hands dirty, and I especially don’t like to get my hands dirty when it comes to fixing other people’s mistakes. Usually, I don’t have to.” Ueno sighed, flicking a loose lock of hair out of her face. “Unfortunately, we’re in the middle of the biggest fiasco we’ve had to deal with in ages; I’m down ten thousand silver, one of my gang members has gone utterly off the deep end, and it’s beginning to look very much like I need to get my hands dirty. I mean, he nearly burnt down Vegas, for Christ’s sake.” She paused, her eyes flicking to Val. “No disrespect intended, of course.”

Val massaged his temples. A feeling of unfortunate familiarity had been stirring in his gut since Ueno had mentioned a fiasco, and by the time she’d got around to mentioning Vegas, he was certain she was talking about the Dead-Eyes and their pursuit of Cody. The woman who managed the Dead-Eyes was sitting in his hotel room, and Val couldn’t repeat what she was saying to anyone, not even Friday, because this was a formal confession, and he couldn’t violate the seal of the confessional. Val had never felt quite so distinctly that the Lord was testing him.

“None taken,” he said, finally remembering he owed Ueno a response. “I’m sorry - like I said, it’s been a long night. Do you have more to confess?”

“Oh, yes,” she said. “As you might have guessed, I’m not terribly fond of the gang that’s making all this trouble. First Vegas, now they’re off causing problems in Texas - in my hometown, believe it or not. You’d think they would know better.”

“Gangs rarely know better, I’ve found,” Val said, idly rubbing the fingers of one hand over the burn scars on the palm of the other. So John and Cody were in Texas, then. Or they’d passed through Texas recently, and now the Dead-Eyes were tearing it up in search of them. Another important detail he couldn’t tell Friday. He could use the information, of course, but he couldn’t say why, or even insinuate that Ueno had told him in confessional, which was apt to drive both him and Friday up a wall.

Ueno laughed. “Usually when it comes to me, they do.”

“They must afford you a fair amount of respect, then,” Val said. “Or fear.”

“A little of both, I would say.” Ueno shrugged. “But it gets the job done. And I’d very much like to keep things that way, which I don’t foresee happening if I allow that problem gang to keep burning and pillaging its way across the States. There are too many people who would love nothing more than to take my position away from me, and I’m not going to let it slip through my fingers.”

“So what are you going to do?” Val asked, getting the feeling that Ueno had come here to ask that very question - that she wasn’t completely sure of the answer, herself.

“Well, that’s just the thing,” she said, with a sigh. “I have to kill him, don’t I? The head of the gang? I don’t think he’s going to stop unless someone makes him stop. It’s the only way to solve this mess and keep my position, from where I’m sitting.”

“It’s not going to get you that ten thousand silver back,” Val said, somewhat pointedly.

“No, it’s not,” Ueno said, frowning in thought. “I’ll just have to go after the boy he loaned the silver to. But more subtly. No burning down any more cities, obviously, or I won’t have an organization to come back to. Come to think of it, I might not even have to get my hands dirty at all…” She trailed off, then glanced to Val. “What do you think? Killing the gang leader is the only way out of this for me, isn’t it? If I want to keep my people’s respect?”

“I can’t advocate murder. You know that,” Val said. Murder was a sin, even if Ethan was fairly high on the list of people whose death might not move him in the slightest. Though maybe that was the exhaustion talking. “Besides, murder seems a little rash, just to punish someone who’s already making a fool of himself. I’m not sure his actions reflect on you as much as you think they do.”

“You don’t know my line of work,” Ueno countered. “People see a gang member in my organization making a fool of himself, they think I don’t know how to control my assets.”

“So kick him out of his gang. Turn him in to the authorities, anonymously. There’s plenty of solutions beyond murder,” Val said, somewhat stiffly. “You could even detain him somewhere and make him disappear to the public eye, though I’m not sure that’s any better.”

“You might have a talent for this, Father,” Ueno said, with a chuckle. “But as much as I’d love to do any of those things, they’d be like a slap on the wrist compared to what he’s gone and done. I’ve got displaced Vegas gangs breathing down my neck looking for reparations, and a group in Texas complaining about a botched parlay where the Dead-Eyes didn’t play by the rules. My organization has those rules for a reason, and if I can’t make everyone afraid to break them, no one’s going to follow them. As much as I hate to be the bad guy, that’s just the way things are.”

Val eyed Ueno. So she was going to kill Ethan, regardless of what he said, and find a different way to go after John and Cody for the money Cody owed. The thought made his stomach turn, and he got to his feet suddenly, practically looming over Ueno.

“If you’ll pardon my saying so, Miss Ueno, it sounds like you’ve already made up your mind about what you’re going to do. My advice to you is that you think on it a little longer before you go and do it,” he said. His voice was flat and rasping with exhaustion, and he could barely bring himself to care that he was being short with a woman who could very likely kill him in his sleep, if she chose to. “Now. Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good.”

Ueno’s eyes narrowed for just a moment, though it was a long enough moment for Val to regret being so curt with her. Then, she chuckled and got to her feet as well, stepping towards the door. She paused to eye him - she wasn’t nearly as tall as he was, though still tall enough to look him in the eye.

“For his mercy endures forever,” she said, lips still curled in a smile. “Goodnight, Father. You’ve given me a lot to think about.”

She left, the door swinging shut behind her. As soon as the sound of her heels clicking against the floorboards receded into silence, Val sat down heavily on the bed.

“Lord,” he said under his breath, struggling almost violently out of his belt and pants, “I hope you don’t begrudge me for my foul language, but I’d sure like to know what the fuck just happened here.”

He began undoing the buttons of his shirt, but a knock at his door made him pause. Val glanced down at his pants, now around his ankles, and debated putting them back on before deciding it wasn’t worth it. Even if it was Ueno again.

“Come in,” he said.

Friday pushed open the door, glanced over him, and arched her eyebrows.

“You look like shit, preacher,” she said.

Val snorted. “I’m tired.”

“Yeah, well, ain’t we all,” she said. “We got the rooms for another night, by the way. I’m on my way to wash up, and you can have the bathroom after, if you’re still awake.”

“I probably won’t be,” Val said, though the encounter with Ueno had left him with a sudden surplus of nervous energy. He fidgeted with one of his shirt buttons, trying to work some of it off. “Listen, I want to leave first thing tomorrow morning. Early. I think we can make the Mississippi in a day and a half, if we both take shifts driving and don’t stop for much besides meals and sleep.”

Friday gave him a curious look. “Why the rush?”

“I’m worried about John and Cody,” Val said, and it wasn’t technically a lie. He was worried, both about what Ueno might do to them, and what Ethan might do, if he was feeling trapped and desperate. “I think we should pick up the pace. Try to meet up with them as soon as possible.”

“Well, I’m with you there,” Friday said, with a nod. “Tell you what, if you promise to drive first thing in the morning, we’ll leave first thing in the morning. I’ll take the afternoon shift, after lunch.”

Val sighed with relief. “Thank you.”

“I’m worried about them too, you know,” she said. “Anyway, I’m going to get clean. Get some rest, preacher.”

“I’ll certainly try,” Val muttered, and returned to his shirt buttons as Friday shut the door again.

8.11 || 8.13

Part 21: I had an idea of what I wanted and was able to really write it after seeing some destiel fan art. I hope you enjoy this somewhat rushed ending 😂!

———

The years passed, monsters fought, big bads defeated. Sam moved out. He met another hunter, Gabby. They fell in love and began their own hunting life away from Cas and Dean. Dean was growing older, his angel’s vessel remaining youthful. Joints aching and foggy memory, Dean couldn’t hunt anymore. He supplied younger hunters with books, advice, and occasionally a place to crash. Sam would call often to ensure his brother’s health.

It grew harder for Cas to watch his love grow older. He fixed what he could, a knee or back. But knew Dean’s life was coming to an end. They laid down with one another one night, Cas stayed awake as Dean’s breathing grew relaxed. He lost focus as dawn came. When the sun first peeled through the windows of their bedroom, Cas turned to Dean. He already knew it was over.

In heaven, Castiel greeted a new arrival. A soul pushed into the body of his prime thirties. Cas smiled at the young man. Dean’s heaven was their house, pictures along the walls. Sam was in the yard with Gabby, his wife, and their twins. It was his idea of perfect. It was Cas’s too.

———

All past parts are available on my page. If you haven’t read before, please do! I accept feedback (and encourage it!!) through reblogging or commenting. I would prefer not recovering it through messaging but if that’s what suits you or you want your suggestions to be private, you can message me. Thanks for those who have read this part alone, as well as to those who have read everything! I hope you enjoyed my first fan fiction!

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While Pinkie was starting to walk away, Fluttershy made a snack suggestion for Pinkie.

Fluttershy: You know, maybe some baby carrots…

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Hearing the word “baby”, Pinkie backed up as fast as she could. She wasn’t sure if she had heard Fluttershy right or not.

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Pinkie could practically feel her heart racing as she nervously got face to face with Fluttershy.

Pinkie: What did you say?!

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Futtershy was rather intimidated by Pinkie’s reaction. She secretly started to wonder if somehow she offended Pinkie.

Fluttershy: Baby carrots! They’re Shining Armor’s favorite.

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Pinkie laughed nervously as she did her best to dodge the news of the new baby that was buzzing in her mind.

Pinkie: Mine too! 

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Pinkie: Baby carrots are kinda like big carrots but smaller.

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Pinkie: Kinda like how foals are tiny versions of their parents but smaller and cuter and-

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It was then that Pinkie realized that she had almost said more than she should’ve. Suddenly, she bit her lip and forcefully restrained herself from saying anything else. Surely, there had to be something she could say to disrupt the entire conversation.