Charging Forward Quotes

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While you'll feel compelled to charge forward it's often a gentle step back that will reveal to you where you and what you truly seek.
Rasheed Ogunlaru
Courage can be displayed in many forms, my lord,' I said gently. 'Sometimes it's evident in the knight charging forward with the lance on his steed. But perhaps it can also take the form of a head bowed before the enemy.
Jody Hedlund (An Uncertain Choice (An Uncertain Choice, #1))
It is our inward journey that leads us through time – forward or back, seldom in a straight line, most often spiraling. Each of us is moving, changing, with respect to others. As we discover, we remember; remembering, we discover; and most intensely do we experience this when our separate journeys converge. Our living experience at those meeting points is one of the charged dramatic fields of fiction.
Eudora Welty (One Writer's Beginnings)
As Patron-Sponser, I am charged with..."-he pasued and consulted the notes-"adding a sense of royal cachet to proceedings today." He waited while a ripple of conversation ran around the room. Nobody was quite sure what adding a sense of royal cachet really meant. But everyone agreed that it sounded impressive indeed. Lady Pauline's mouth twitched in a smile and she looked down at the table. Halt found something of vast interest in the ceiling beams high above. Duncan continued. My second duty is..."-again he consulted his notes to make sure he had the wording correct-"to provide an extremly expensive present to the bride and groom..." Lady Pualine's head jerked at that. She leaned forward and turned to make eye contact with Lord Anthony. The Chamberlain met her gaze, his face completely devoid of expression. Then, very slowly, one eyelid slid down in a wink. He liked Lady Pauline and Halt a great deal and he'd added that duty without consulting them.
John Flanagan (Erak's Ransom (Ranger's Apprentice, #7))
Perhaps the greatest gift ever bestowed upon us by evolution is the ability to believe we are more powerful than we are . . . You walk around with the fundamental belief that the world is uncaring, that no matter how hard you work there is no promise of success, that you are competing against billions, that you are vulnerable to the elements, and that everything you ever love will eventually be destroyed. A little lie can take the edge off, can help you keep charging forward into the gauntlet of life, where you sometimes, accidentally, prevail.
Lulu Miller (Why Fish Don't Exist: A Story of Loss, Love, and the Hidden Order of Life)
Yes,” she purred. “I really think you can do better. Lots better.” As she spoke, she trailed a red-painted finger down the center of his chest, over his abdomen, heading straight for the button on his jeans. And oh, hell to the no. “Get your hands off him.” Sadi’s head snapped in my direction. “Excuse me?” “I don’t think I stuttered.” I took a step forward. “But it looks like you need me to repeat it. Get your freaking hands off him.” One side of her plump red lips curled up. “You want to make me?” In the back of my head, I was aware that Sadi didn’t move or speak like the other Luxen. Her mannerisms were too human, but then that thought was quickly chased away when Daemon reached down and pulled her hand away. “Stop it,” he murmured, voice dropped low in that teasing way of his. I saw red. The pictures on the wall rattled and the papers on the desk started to lift up. Static charged over my skin. I was about to pull a Beth right here, seconds away from floating to the ceiling and ripping out every strand of red—
Jennifer L. Armentrout (Opposition (Lux, #5))
Even I would be moved by his kindness at times, but he could, just as easily, be malicious and cruel. He was both a spirit of amazing loftiness and an irredeemable man of the gutter. He could charge forward, the optimistic leader, even as his heart writhed in a swamp of loneliness. He lived in his own special hell.
Haruki Murakami (Norwegian Wood)
Books had rescued me when i most needed saving... Books were smarter than me and words inspired me... to try something new, charge forward without a clear understanding of what would happen next, because "given something like death, what does it matter if one looks foolish now and then, or tries too hard, or cares too deeply?" In the end, Thoreau, Whitman, Hafiz, and a dozen other writers put me up to the task of seeing if I dared to "live a life worth living.
Dee Williams
Go on," Kell told him without taking his eyes from Lila. " Get some rest." Hastra shifted. "I can't, sir," he said. "I'm to escort Miss Bard--" "I'll take that charge," cut in Kell. Hastra bit his lip and retreated several steps. Lila let her forehead come to rest against his, her face so close the features blurred. And yet, that fractured eye shone with frightening clarity. "You never told me," he whispered. "You never noticed," she answered. And then, "Alucard did." The blow landed, and Kell started to pull away when Lila's eyelids fluttered and she swayed dangerously. He braced her. "Come on," he said gently. "I have a room upstairs. Why don't we--" A sleepy flicker of amusement. "Trying to get me into bed?" Kell mustered a smile. "It's only fair. I've spent enough time in yours." "If I remember correctly," she said, her voice dreamy with fatigue, "you were on top of the bed the entire time." "And tied to it," observed Kell. Her words were soft at the edges. "Those were the days..." she said, right before she fell forward. It happened so fast Kell could do nothing but throw his arms around her. "Lila?" he asked, first gently, and then more urgently. "Lila?" She murmured against his front, something about sharp knives and soft corners, but didn't rouse, and Kell shot a glance at Hastra, who was still standing there, looking thoroughly embarrassed. "What have you done?" demanded Kell. "It was just a tonic, sir," he fumbled, "something for sleep." "You drugged her?" "It was Tieren's order," said Hastra, chastised. "He said she was mad and stubborn and no use to us dead." Hastra lowered his voice when he said this, mimicking Tieren's tone with startling accuracy. "And what do you plan to do when she wakes back up?" Hastra shrank back. "Apologize?" Kell made an exasperated sound as Lila nuzzled-- actually nuzzled-- his shoulder. "I suggest," he snapped at the young man, "you think of something better. Like an escape route." Hastra paled, and Kell swept Lila up into his arms, amazed at her lightness... Kell swept through the halls until he reached his room and lowered Lila onto the couch. Hastra handed him a blanket. "Shouldn't you take off her knives?" "There's not enough tonic in the world to risk it," said Kell.
V.E. Schwab (A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic, #3))
The secret killer of innovation is shame. You can’t measure it, but it is there. Every time someone holds back on a new idea, fails to give their manager much needed feedback, and is afraid to speak up in front of a client you can be sure shame played a part. That deep fear we all have of being wrong, of being belittled and of feeling less than, is what stops us taking the very risks required to move our companies forward. If you want a culture of creativity and innovation, where sensible risks are embraced on both a market and individual level, start by developing the ability of managers to cultivate an openness to vulnerability in their teams. And this, paradoxically perhaps, requires first that they are vulnerable themselves. This notion that the leader needs to be “in charge” and to “know all the answers” is both dated and destructive. Its impact on others is the sense that they know less, and that they are less than. A recipe for risk aversion if ever I have heard it. Shame becomes fear. Fear leads to risk aversion. Risk aversion kills innovation.
Brené Brown (Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead)
If I find out you laid a hand on my daughter--" "What?" said Gabriel. "You'll stand here and bitch about it?" "Stop it!" cried Layne, dragging his coat and backpack from the kitchen. Her dad took a step forward. "I'll have you arrested and charged with trespassing and statutory rape." "Then I'm going to need another fifteen minutes.
Brigid Kemmerer (Spark (Elemental, #2))
There will always be ups and downs, twists and turns in our lives. But we have to find the strength to keep moving forward. The past is done, it’s over, and you can’t change it. You can hold on to your memories and learn from them. Look at what’s in front of you, focus on your vision, and run toward it! Because when it’s all said and done, only you are in charge of your strength, your peace, and your happiness.
Jalpa Williby (Chaysing Dreams (Chaysing Trilogy #1))
Half a league, half a league, Half a league onward, All in the valley of Death Rode the six hundred. "Forward the Light Brigade! Charge for the guns!" he said. Into the valley of Death Rode the six hundred. Forward, the Light Brigade!" Was there a man dismay'd? Not tho' the soldier knew Some one had blunder'd. Theirs not to make reply, Theirs not to reason why, Theirs but to do and die. Into the valley of Death Rode the six hundred. Cannon to right of them, Cannon to left of them, Cannon in front of them Volley'd and thunder'd; Storm'd at with shot and shell, Boldly they rode and well, Into the jaws of Death, Into the mouth of hell Rode the six hundred. Flash'd all their sabres bare, Flash'd as they turn'd in air Sabring the gunners there, Charging an army, while All the world wonder'd. Plunged in the battery-smoke Right thro' the line they broke; Cossack and Russian Reel'd from the sabre-stroke Shatter'd and sunder'd. Then they rode back, but not, Not the six hundred. Cannon to right of them, Cannon to left of them, Cannon behind them Volley'd and thunder'd; Storm'd at with shot and shell, While horse and hero fell, They that had fought so well Came thro' the jaws of Death, Back from the mouth of hell, All that was left of them, Left of six hundred. When can their glory fade? O the wild charge they made! All the world wonder'd. Honor the charge they made! Honor the Light Brigade, Noble six hundred!
Alfred Tennyson
a negative charge moving backward in time is mathematically equivalent to a positive charge moving forward in time!
Lawrence M. Krauss (A Universe from Nothing: Why There Is Something Rather than Nothing)
What is the meaning of "strength"? It's to have a mind that does not sway, while continuing to move forward and charge.
Takehiko Inoue (バガボンド 36 (Vagabond, #36))
Step backward and assess the situation. if you can't do that, step forward and take charge.
Sydney Wilhelmy
When I was twelve, my sixth-grade English class went on a field trip to see Franco Zeffirelli’s film adaptation of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. From that moment forward I dreamed that someday I’d meet my own Juliet. I’d marry her and I would love her with the same passion and intensity as Romeo. The fact that their marriage lasted fewer than three days before they both were dead didn’t seem to affect my fantasy. Even if they had lived, I don’t think their relationship could have survived. Let’s face it, being that emotionally aflame, sexually charged, and transcendentally eloquent every single second can really start to grate on a person’s nerves. However, if I could find someone to love just a fraction of the way that Montague loved his Capulet, then marrying her would be worth it.
Annabelle Gurwitch (You Say Tomato, I Say Shut Up: A Love Story)
He surveyed me, his eyes half closed, as if wondering if I were a delicious snack. I had an image of a massive dragon circling me slowly, eyes full of magic fixed on me as he moved, considering if he should bite me in half. “Dragons.” Rogan snapped his fingers. Oh crap. “I wondered why I kept getting dragons around you.” He leaned forward. His eyes lit up, turning back to their clear sky blue. “You think I’m a dragon.” “Don’t be ridiculous.” My face felt hot. I was probably blushing. Damn it. His smile went from amused to sexual, so charged with promise that carnal was the only way to describe it. I almost bolted out of my chair. “Big powerful scary dragon.” “You have delusions of grandeur.” “Do I have a lair? Did I kidnap you to it from your castle?” I stared straight at him, trying to frost my voice. “You have some strange fantasies, Rogan. You may need professional help.” “Would you like to volunteer?” “No. Besides, dragons kidnap virgins, so I’m out.” And why had I just told him I was not a virgin? Why did I even go there? “It doesn’t matter if I’m the first. It only matters that I’ll be the last.” “You won’t be the first, the last, or anything in between. Not in a million years.” He laughed. “Rogan,” I ground out through my teeth. “I’m on the clock. My client is in the next room mourning his wife. Stop flirting with me.” “Stop? I haven’t even started.
Ilona Andrews (White Hot (Hidden Legacy, #2))
He's putting a lot of cards down on the table," Trey said thoughtfully, taking a step forward. "And Matthias is never one to share something for free if he could charge for it." "And you're not normally one to think for himself," Matthias said pleasantly. "I suppose we're all growing as people.
Scott Tracey (Demon Eyes (Witch Eyes, #2))
Ave, Praetor Zhang!” Reyna called. “Ave, Praetor Ramírez-Arellano!” Frank said. “Let’s do this. Legion, CLOSE RANKS!” A cheer went up among the Romans as the five cohorts melded into one massive killing machine. Frank pointed his sword forward, and from the golden eagle standard, tendrils of lightning swept across the enemy, turning several hundred monsters to toast. “Legion, cuneum formate!” Reyna yelled. “Advance!” Another cheer on Jason’s right as Percy and Annabeth reunited with the forces of Camp Half-Blood. “Greeks!” Percy yelled. “Let’s, um, fight stuff!” They yelled like banshees and charged. Jason grinned. He loved the Greeks. They had no organization whatsoever, but they made up for it with enthusiasm.
Rick Riordan (The Blood of Olympus (The Heroes of Olympus, #5))
Astro Types Aries is the forward type He doesn’t lose his head Except when charging headlong in Where “Angels fear to tread”. Taurus has a pretty face And likes her comfort best. She’ll eat you out of house and home Then take the longest rest.
Bernie Morris, Colleen Thatcher (Verse for Ages)
Hope - meaning when everything goes wrong and you are all but lost. Hope brings you back up on your feet and gives you the strength to charge forward.
Melina Turner
It turned out that looking forward to a vacation or event provided even more happiness than the event itself.
Tom Rath (Are You Fully Charged?: The 3 Keys to Energizing Your Work and Life)
F-E-A-R has two meanings: 'Forget Everything And Run' or 'Face Everything And Rise.' The choice is yours.” — Zig Ziglar
Scott Allan (Nothing Scares Me: Charge Forward With Confidence, Conquer Resistance, and Break Through Your Limitations (Bulletproof Mindset Mastery Series))
And, increasingly, I find myself fixing on that refusal to pull back. Because I don’t care what anyone says or how often or winningly they say it: no one will ever, ever be able to persuade me that life is some awesome, rewarding treat. Because, here’s the truth: life is catastrophe. The basic fact of existence—of walking around trying to feed ourselves and find friends and whatever else we do—is catastrophe. Forget all this ridiculous ‘Our Town’ nonsense everyone talks: the miracle of a newborn babe, the joy of one simple blossom, Life You Are Too Wonderful To Grasp, &c. For me—and I’ll keep repeating it doggedly till I die, till I fall over on my ungrateful nihilistic face and am too weak to say it: better never born, than born into this cesspool. Sinkhole of hospital beds, coffins, and broken hearts. No release, no appeal, no “do-overs” to employ a favored phrase of Xandra’s, no way forward but age and loss, and no way out but death. [“Complaints bureau!” I remember Boris grousing as a child, one afternoon at his house when we had got off on the vaguely metaphysical subject of our mothers: why they—angels, goddesses—had to die? while our awful fathers thrived, and boozed, and sprawled, and muddled on, and continued to stumble about and wreak havoc, in seemingly indefatigable health? “They took the wrong ones! Mistake was made! Everything is unfair! Who do we complain to, in this shitty place? Who is in charge here?”] And—maybe it’s ridiculous to go on in this vein, although it doesn’t matter since no one’s ever going to see this—but does it make any sense at all to know that it ends badly for all of us, even the happiest of us, and that we all lose everything that matters in the end—and yet to know as well, despite all this, as cruelly as the game is stacked, that it’s possible to play it with a kind of joy?
Donna Tartt (The Goldfinch)
This belief that before we try it, we have to be totally perfect, full of confidence, and bursting with courage is one of the biggest lies that keeps us from doing anything, scared or not. When
Scott Allan (Nothing Scares Me: Charge Forward With Confidence, Conquer Resistance, and Break Through Your Limitations (Bulletproof Mindset Mastery Series))
No. The protest was over the price of bread, said Vimes’s inner voice. The riot was what happens when you have panicking people trapped between idiots on horseback and other idiots shouting “yeah, right!” and trying to push forward, and the whole thing in the charge of a fool advised by a maniac with a steel rule.
Terry Pratchett (Night Watch (Discworld, #29))
It was she made me acquainted with love. She went by the peaceful name of Ruth I think, but I can't say for certain. Perhaps the name was Edith. She had a hole between her legs, oh not the bunghole I had always imagined, but a slit, and in this I put, or rather she put, my so-called virile member, not without difficulty, and I toiled and moiled until I discharged or gave up trying or was begged by her to stop. A mug's game in my opinion and tiring on top of that, in the long run. But I lent myself to it with a good enough grace, knowing it was love, for she had told me so. She bent over the couch, because of her rheumatism, and in I went from behind. It was the only position she could bear, because of her lumbago. It seemed all right to me, for I had seen dogs, and I was astonished when she confided that you could go about it differently. I wonder what she meant exactly. Perhaps after all she put me in her rectum. A matter of complete indifference to me, I needn't tell you. But is it true love, in the rectum? That's what bothers me sometimes. Have I never known true love, after all? She too was an eminently flat woman and she moved with short stiff steps, leaning on an ebony stick. Perhaps she too was a man, yet another of them. But in that case surely our testicles would have collided, while we writhed. Perhaps she held hers tight in her hand, on purpose to avoid it. She favoured voluminous tempestuous shifts and petticoats and other undergarments whose names I forget. They welled up all frothing and swishing and then, congress achieved, broke over us in slow cascades. And all I could see was her taut yellow nape which every now and then I set my teeth in, forgetting I had none, such is the power of instinct. We met in a rubbish dump, unlike any other, and yet they are all alike, rubbish dumps. I don't know what she was doing there. I was limply poking about in the garbage saying probably, for at that age I must still have been capable of general ideas, This is life. She had no time to lose, I had nothing to lose, I would have made love with a goat, to know what love was. She had a dainty flat, no, not dainty, it made you want to lie down in a corner and never get up again. I liked it. It was full of dainty furniture, under our desperate strokes the couch moved forward on its castors, the whole place fell about our ears, it was pandemonium. Our commerce was not without tenderness, with trembling hands she cut my toe-nails and I rubbed her rump with winter cream. This idyll was of short duration. Poor Edith, I hastened her end perhaps. Anyway it was she who started it, in the rubbish dump, when she laid her hand upon my fly. More precisely, I was bent double over a heap of muck, in the hope of finding something to disgust me for ever with eating, when she, undertaking me from behind, thrust her stick between my legs and began to titillate my privates. She gave me money after each session, to me who would have consented to know love, and probe it to the bottom, without charge. But she was an idealist. I would have preferred it seems to me an orifice less arid and roomy, that would have given me a higher opinion of love it seems to me. However. Twixt finger and thumb tis heaven in comparison. But love is no doubt above such contingencies. And not when you are comfortable, but when your frantic member casts about for a rubbing-place, and the unction of a little mucous membrane, and meeting with none does not beat in retreat, but retains its tumefaction, it is then no doubt that true love comes to pass, and wings away, high above the tight fit and the loose.
Samuel Beckett (Molloy / Malone Dies / The Unnamable)
You see, Valentin, there is no such thing as time. It's just a road, a path to travel on. Most of the world is on a train, traveling forward all the time, speeding toward death, with a set schedule and someone else in charge.
Daniel Nayeri
In a world of watered-down bestsellers and formula novels, Hitching to Nirvana eases back just enough to show the blade which cuts the real open, then bolts forward again, giving us a charged, swerving dance to self-actualization. Hitching to Nirvana is a magnetic forcefield, not just pulling us beautifully into the story, but into our own lives. It's rare when a writer can open the shared world with such a deft, personal touch. Janet Mason is a genius.
C.A. Conrad (The Book of Frank)
Leaning forward with lithe grace his body shouldn’t have been capable of but was, he trapped her between his arms and hovered over her, the air charged in the space between their bodies. “I’ve tasted you now, Ms. Vitalio,” he whispered, his gaze locked on hers. “You can’t escape me now.” “You don’t scare me anymore, Mr. Caine,” she replied, her voice breathy.
RuNyx (The Reaper (Dark Verse #2))
Baby smuggling is a serious crime,' he said. 'There were thirty-six babies on that plane. We could charge you with thirty-six counts of kidnapping.' That, at least, got Second to look back at Mr. Reardon. 'Does FBI mean Federal Bureau of Idiots?' he asked. 'If any of you were any good at analyzing footprints, you would know that I fell when I was trying to sneak into the airport grounds, not out.' 'And why would you do that?' Mr. Reardon asked, hunching forward over a notepad. 'It was a dare, all right?' Second snarled. 'I was with my friends and we were talking about what it would be like to stand on a runway when a plane was landing and...we decided to try it out.' 'That's a crime too,' Mr. Reardon said. Second shrugged. 'It ain't thirty-six counts of kidnapping,' he said.
Margaret Peterson Haddix (Redeemed (The Missing, #8))
I don’t know what to . . . to think.” There was a horrifying burn of tears crawling up my throat. “This is all overwhelming for you, I imagine. The whole world as you know it is on the brink of great change, and you’re here and don’t even know my name.” The man smiled so broadly, I wondered if it hurt. “You can call me Rolland.” Then he extended a hand. My gaze dropped to it and I made no attempt to take it. Rolland chuckled as he turned and strolled back to the desk. “So, you’re a hybrid? Mutated and linked to him on such an intense level that if one of you dies, so does the other?” His question caught me off guard, but I kept quiet. He sat on the edge of the desk. “You’re actually the first hybrid I’ve seen.” “She really isn’t anything special.” The redhead sneered. “Frankly, she’s rather filthy, like an unclean animal.” As stupid as it was, my cheeks heated, because I was filthy, and Daemon had just physically removed me from him. My pride—my everything—was officially wounded. Rolland chuckled. “She’s had a rough day, Sadi.” At her name, every muscle in my body locked up, and my gaze swung back to her. That was Sadi? The one Dee said was trying to molest Daemon—my Daemon? Anger punched through the confusion and hurt. Of course it would have to be a freaking walking and talking model and not a hag. “Rough day or not, I can’t imagine she cleans up well.” Sadi looked at Daemon as she placed a hand on his chest. “I’m kind of disappointed.” “Are you?” Daemon replied.
 Every hair on my body rose as my arms unfolded.
 “Yes,” she purred. “I really think you can do better. Lots better.” As she spoke, she trailed red-painted fingers down the center of his chest, over his abdomen, heading straight for the button on his jeans. And oh, hell to the no. “Get your hands off him.”
 Sadi’s head snapped in my direction. “Excuse me?”
 “I don’t think I stuttered.” I took a step forward. “But it looks like you need me to repeat it. Get your freaking hands off him.” One side of her plump red lips curled up. “You want to make me?”
 In the back of my head, I was aware that Sadi didn’t move or speak like the other Luxen. Her mannerisms were too human, but then that thought was quickly chased away when Daemon reached down and pulled her hand away. “Stop it,” he murmured, voice dropped low in that teasing way of his. I saw red. The pictures on the wall rattled and the papers on the desk started to lift up. Static charged over my skin. I was about to pull a Beth right here, seconds away from floating to the ceiling and ripping out every strand of red— “And you stop it,” Daemon said, but the teasing quality was gone from his words. There was a warning in them that took the wind right out of my pissed-off sails. The pictures settled as I gaped at him. Being slapped in the face would’ve been better.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (Opposition (Lux, #5))
The most enduring relationship we can have, is the one we have with our self. It is the foundation of everything. Respect for self is the basis for self-love. Value and love yourself with dignity because YOU is the only one you've got. Embrace your strengths and weaknesses- they play a key part in your growth. Joy is important, so make time for yourself, and be your own best friend. You know that you can’t change your past but you can take charge of your present. Make peace with your past and keep moving forward. Your self depends on it!
Angie karan
Life-giver,” he said and leaned forward, kissing her breast and mouth. She held him a moment. They got up, and waked Therru, and went on their way; but as they entered the trees Tenar looked back once at the little meadow as if charging it to keep faith with her happiness there.
Ursula K. Le Guin (Tehanu (Earthsea Cycle, #4))
His will be done, as done it surely will be, whether we humble ourselves to resignation or not. The impulse of creation forwards it; the strength of powers, seen and unseen, has its fulfillment in charge. Proof of a life to come must be given. In fire and in blood, if needful, must that proof be written. In fire and in blood do we trace the record throughout nature. In fire and in blood does it cross our own experience. Sufferer, faint not through terror of this burning evidence. Tired wayfarer, gird up thy loins, look upward, march onward. Pilgrims and brother mourners, join in friendly company. Dark through the wilderness of this world stretches the way for most of us: equal and steady be our tread; be our cross our banner. For staff we have His promis, whose 'word is tried, whose way perfect": for present hope His providence, 'who gives the shield of salvation, whose gentleness makes great'; for final home His bosom, who 'dwells in the height of Heaven'; for crowning prize a glory exceeding and eternal. Let us so run that we may obtain: let us endure hardness as good soldiers; let us finish our course, and keep the faith, reliant in the issue to come off more than conquerors: 'Art though not from everlasting mine Holy One? WE SHALL NOT DIE!
Charlotte Brontë
You all right, sis?” Kaden asked, pausing between heaping spoonfuls of oatmeal. “Of course.” “You look a little stressed.” “You would, too, if you were going to run the country,” I teased. “Sometimes I think about that,” he said, getting all serious. “Like, what if a disease swept over all of Illéa, and you and Mom and Dad and Ahren got sick and died. Then I’d be in charge and have to figure out everything on my own.” In my periphery I saw Dad lean forward, listening to his son. “That’s a little morbid, Kaden.” Kaden shrugged. “It’s always good to plan ahead.” I
Kiera Cass (The Heir (The Selection, #4))
Punishers don’t see themselves as punishing, but rather as maintaining order or keeping a firm hand on things or doing “what’s right” or letting us know they can’t be pushed around. They see themselves as strong and in charge. If their behavior hurts us, so be it. The end justifies the means.
Susan Forward (Emotional Blackmail: When the People in Your Life Use Fear, Obligation, and Guilt to Manipulate You)
We have a “fast-food mentality” that expects an instant return on our investment of time, attention, and effort, a return that is concrete and clear. We are so comfortable charging forward and succeeding through our aggression and innovation that the idea of patience can seem contrary to our instincts.
John Lewis (Across That Bridge: Life Lessons and a Vision for Change)
You can do something that most can’t,” he says, looking at me with an intensity I haven’t seen before. “You can look horror in the eye and charge forward, and you can survive.” I chew on my lip. He has a lot more confidence in me than I have in myself, that’s for sure. “I’ll be right there holding your hand.
Sidney Halston (Pull Me Close (Panic, #1))
leadership at its most fundamental is about moving people in a certain direction—usually through changing the direction of their thinking and their actions. And the way to do that is not necessarily by charging out front and saying, “Follow me,” but by empowering or pushing others to move forward ahead of you. It is through empowering others
Richard Stengel (Mandela's Way: Lessons for an Uncertain Age)
What is so often said about the solders of the 20th century is that they fought to make us free. Which is a wonderful sentiment and one witch should evoke tremendous gratitude if in fact there was a shred of truth in that statement but, it's not true. It's not even close to true in fact it's the opposite of truth. There's this myth around that people believe that the way to honor deaths of so many of millions of people; that the way to honor is to say that we achieved some tangible, positive, good, out of their death's. That's how we are supposed to honor their deaths. We can try and rescue some positive and forward momentum of human progress, of human virtue from these hundreds of millions of death's but we don't do it by pretending that they'd died to set us free because we are less free; far less free now then we were before these slaughters began. These people did not die to set us free. They did not die fighting any enemy other than the ones that the previous deaths created. The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their proper names. Solders are paid killers, and I say this with a great degree of sympathy to young men and women who are suckered into a life of evil through propaganda and the labeling of heroic to a man in costume who kills for money and the life of honor is accepting ordered killings for money, prestige, and pensions. We create the possibility of moral choice by communicating truth about ethics to people. That to me is where real heroism and real respect for the dead lies. Real respect for the dead lies in exhuming the corpses and hearing what they would say if they could speak out; and they would say: If any ask us why we died tell it's because our fathers lied, tell them it's because we were told that charging up a hill and slaughtering our fellow man was heroic, noble, and honorable. But these hundreds of millions of ghosts encircled the world in agony, remorse will not be released from our collective unconscious until we lay the truth of their murders on the table and look at the horror that is the lie; that murder for money can be moral, that murder for prestige can be moral. These poor young men and woman propagandized into an undead ethical status lied to about what is noble, virtuous, courageous, honorable, decent, and good to the point that they're rolling hand grenades into children's rooms and the illusion that, that is going to make the world a better place. We have to stare this in the face if we want to remember why these people died. They did not die to set us free. They did not die to make the world a better place. They died because we are ruled by sociopaths. The only thing that can create a better world is the truth is the virtue is the honor and courage of standing up to the genocidal lies of mankind and calling them lies and ultimate corruptions. The trauma and horrors of this century of staggering bloodshed of the brief respite of the 19th century. This addiction to blood and the idea that if we pour more bodies into the hole of the mass graves of the 20th century, if we pour more bodies and more blood we can build some sort of cathedral to a better place but it doesn't happen. We can throw as many young men and woman as we want into this pit of slaughter and it will never be full. It will never do anything other than sink and recede further into the depths of hell. We can’t build a better world on bodies. We can’t build peace on blood. If we don't look back and see the army of the dead of the 20th century calling out for us to see that they died to enslave us. That whenever there was a war the government grew and grew. We are so addicted to this lie. What we need to do is remember that these bodies bury us. This ocean of blood that we create through the fantasy that violence brings virtue. It drowns us, drowns our children, our future, and the world. When we pour these endless young bodies into this pit of death; we follow it.
Stefan Molyneux
To be a Woman and a pedestrian in the city can be combative and exhausting, but sometimes it reminds me that I am in charge and that I will propel myself forward, always forward.
Lizzy Stewart (Walking Distance)
Things that will make you unstoppable; Get the naysayers out of your life, Take charge of your destiny, Be uncommon, Be relentless, and Never look backwards.
Germany Kent
Through learning at my later date things I hadn't known, or had escaped or possibly feared realizing, about my parents - and myself - I glimpsed our whole family life as if it were freed of that clock time which spaces us apart so inhibitingly, divides young and old, keeps our living through the same experiences at separate distances. It is our inward journey that leads us through time - forward or back, seldom in a straight line, most often spiraling. Each of us is moving, changing, with respect to others. As we discover, we remember; remembering, we discover; and most intensely do we experience this when our separate journeys converge. Our living experience at those meeting points is one of the charged dramatic fields of fiction.
Eudora Welty (On Writing (Modern Library))
Today, the lay midwife is a response to a growing home-birth movement. In my own community most physicians have decided to withhold prenatal care from the home-birther. This is judgmental and vindictive. These doctors have decided that home birth is not safe, and by withholding prenatal care they are doing their best to make sure it is unsafe. Often it is lay midwives who step forward to fill the void and help eliminate the unnecessary dangers of home birth. They are essential for screening out women who really should not have a home birth. For considerably less money than a physician charges, they spend many more hours with a pregnant woman before, during, and after the birth. and in most places they courageously face the opposition of the established medical community.
Susan McCutcheon (Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way)
You are not going to pass off your many ineptitudes on the students of Hogwarts. I shall not permit it.” “Excuse me?” Amycus moved forward until he was offensively close to Professor McGonagall, his face within inches of hers. She refused to back away, but looked down at him as if he were something disgusting she had found stuck to a lavatory seat. “It’s not a case of what you’ll permit, Minerva McGonagall. Your time’s over. It’s us what’s in charge here now, and you’ll back me up or you’ll pay the price.” And he spat in her face. Harry pulled the Cloak off himself, raised his wand, and said, “You shouldn’t have done that.” As Amycus spun around, Harry shouted, “Crucio!” The Death Eater was lifted off his feet. He writhed through the air like a drowning man, thrashing and howling in pain, and then, with a crunch and a shattering of glass, he smashed into the front of a bookcase and crumpled, insensible, to the floor. “I see what Bellatrix meant,” said Harry, the blood thundering through his brain, “you need to really mean it.” “Potter!” whispered Professor McGonagall, clutching her heart. “Potter--you’re here! What--? How--?” She struggled to pull herself together. “Potter, that was foolish!” “He spat at you,” said Harry. “Potter, I--that was very--very gallant of you--but don’t you realize--?” “Yeah, I do,” Harry assured her. Somehow her panic steadied him. “Professor McGonagall, Voldemort’s on the way.” “Oh, are we allowed to say the name now?” asked Luna with an air of interest, pulling off the Invisibility Cloak. This appearance of a second outlaw seemed to overwhelm Professor McGonagall, who staggered backward and fell into a nearby chair, clutching at the neck of her old tartan dressing gown. “I don’t think it makes any difference what we call him,” Harry told Luna. “He already knows where I am.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7))
Wanting to be through with this quickly, I leaned forward and kissed him. Almost. I lost my nerve halfway there, somewhere around the moment I noticed he had a freckle next to his eye and wondered ridiculously if that was something he would remove if I asked it of him, and instead of a proper kiss, I merely brushed my lips against his. It was a shadow of a kiss, cool and insubstantial, and I almost wish I could be romantic and say it was somehow transformative, but in truth, I barely felt it. But then his eyes came open, and he smiled at me with such innocent happiness that my ridiculous heart gave a leap and would have answered him instantly, if it was the organ in charge of my decision-making. "Choose whenever you wish," he said. "No doubt you will first need to draw up a list of pros and cons, or perhaps a series of bar plots. If you like, I will help you organize them into categories." I cleared my throat. "It strikes me that this is all pointless speculation. You cannot marry me. I am not going to be left behind, pining for you, when you return to your kingdom. I have no time for pining." He gave me an astonished look. "Leave you behind! As if you would consent to that. I would expect to be burnt alive when next I returned to visit. No, Em, you will come with me, and we will rule my kingdom together. You will scheme and strategize until you have all my councillors eating out of your hand as easily as you do Poe, and I will show you everything---everything. We will travel to the darkest parts of my realm and back again, and you will find answers to questions you have never even thought to ask, and enough material to fill every journal and library with your discoveries.
Heather Fawcett (Emily Wilde's Encyclopaedia of Faeries (Emily Wilde, #1))
It’s your business if you wanna pretend you’re not queer.” Wrong. Thing. To. Say. His growl echoes on the tiled walls and he makes a move to charge forward only to stop himself feet away from me. Nostrils flared; lips curled back. Delicious anger staring at me. I’m a sick cub for finding him sexy. “You know nothing, Fierro. Keep your fucking mouth shut or I’ll do it for you, got it?” I smile and he’s further pissed off as I watch his eyes crinkle. Pity he’s a jerk, he really is hot. “Whatever you say. Try not to remember how I taste later, yeah?” It’s me who leaves first, brushing by his shoulder and he hisses another curse. His threats today don’t work on me, they never do. He’s like a posturing animal trying to exert his dominance. I never guessed he’d succeed with his tongue in my mouth. Stranger things have happened, but never did I think I’d end up making out with my tormentor.
V. Theia (Manhattan Tormentor (From Manhattan #7))
Why are revolutions so rare? Why do the masses sometimes clap and cheer for centuries on end, doing everything the man on the balcony commands them, even though they could in theory charge forward at any moment and tear him to pieces?
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow)
How to Survive Racism in an Organization that Claims to be Antiracist: 10. Ask why they want you. Get as much clarity as possible on what the organization has read about you, what they understand about you, what they assume are your gifts and strengths. What does the organization hope you will bring to the table? Do those answers align with your reasons for wanting to be at the table? 9. Define your terms. You and the organization may have different definitions of words like "justice", "diveristy", or "antiracism". Ask for definitions, examples, or success stories to give you a better idea of how the organization understands and embodies these words. Also ask about who is in charge and who is held accountable for these efforts. Then ask yourself if you can work within the structure. 8. Hold the organization to the highest vision they committed to for as long as you can. Be ready to move if the leaders aren't prepared to pursue their own stated vision. 7. Find your people. If you are going to push back against the system or push leadership forward, it's wise not to do so alone. Build or join an antiracist cohort within the organization. 6. Have mentors and counselors on standby. Don't just choose a really good friend or a parent when seeking advice. It's important to have on or two mentors who can give advice based on their personal knowledge of the organization and its leaders. You want someone who can help you navigate the particular politics of your organization. 5. Practice self-care. Remember that you are a whole person, not a mule to carry the racial sins of the organization. Fall in love, take your children to the park, don't miss doctors' visits, read for pleasure, dance with abandon, have lots of good sex, be gentle with yourself. 4. Find donors who will contribute to the cause. Who's willing to keep the class funded, the diversity positions going, the social justice center operating? It's important for the organization to know the members of your cohort aren't the only ones who care. Demonstrate that there are stakeholders, congregations members, and donors who want to see real change. 3. Know your rights. There are some racist things that are just mean, but others are against the law. Know the difference, and keep records of it all. 2. Speak. Of course, context matters. You must be strategic about when, how, to whom, and about which situations you decide to call out. But speak. Find your voice and use it. 1. Remember: You are a creative being who is capable of making change. But it is not your responsibility to transform an entire organization.
Austin Channing Brown (I'm Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness)
And we were in our thirties. Well into the Age of Boredom, when nothing is new. Now, I’m not being self-pitying; it’s simply true. Newness, or whatever you want to call it, becomes a very scarce commodity after thirty. I think that’s unfair. If I were in charge of the human life span, I’d make sure to budget newness much more selectively, to ration it out. As it is now, it’s almost used up in the first three years of life. By then you’ve seen for the first time, tasted for the first time, held something for the first time. Learned to walk, talk, go to the bathroom. What have you got to look forward to that can compare with that? Sure, there’s school. Making friends. Falling in love. Learning to drive. Sex. Learning to trade. That has to carry you for the next twenty-five years. But after that? What’s the new excitement? Mastering your home computer? Figuring out how to work CompuServe? “Now, if it were up to me, I’d parcel out. So that, say, at thirty-five we just learned how to go on the potty. Imagine the feeling of accomplishment! They’d have office parties. "Did you hear? The vice president in charge of overseas development just went a whole week without his diaper. We’re buying him a gift." It’d be beautiful.
Phoef Sutton (Fifteen Minutes to Live)
Excuse me,” I say. “If I hadn’t charged in there, your new—your new girlfriend would be dead right now.” I’ve rarely had occasion to use the word in my life, and it takes me a second to remember it. “She’s not your responsibility,” Alex says evenly. Instead of making me feel better, his response makes me feel worse. Despite everything that has happened tonight, it’s this stupid, basic fact that makes me feel like I am going to cry: He didn’t deny that she was his girlfriend. I swallow back the sick taste in my mouth. “Well, I’m not your responsibility either, remember? You can’t tell me what to do.” I’ve found the thread of anger again. Now I’m following it, pulling myself forward on it, hand over hand. “Why do you even care, anyway? You hate me.” Alex stares at me. “You really don’t get it, do you?” His voice is hard. I cross my arms and squeeze tight, trying to squeeze back the pain, to push it deep under the anger. “Don’t get what?” “Forget it.” Alex shoves a hand through his hair. “Forget I said anything at all.
Lauren Oliver (Requiem (Delirium, #3))
We usually believe that the tamer is attacked by the lion and that the tamer stops his attack by raising his whip or firing a blank. Wrong: the lion was fed and sedated before it entered the cage and doesn't feel like attacking anybody. Like all animals, it has its own space; if you don't invade that space, the lion remains calm. When the tamer steps forward, invading it, the lion roars; the tamer then raises his whip, but also takes a step backward (as if in expectation of a charge), whereupon the lion calms down.
Umberto Eco (Foucault's Pendulum)
It’s not a mystery, not the Holy Grail, and not some secret to which only a few people hold the key – regardless of what the gurus charging vast amounts per hour tell you. Dieting IS straight forward once you understand the principals and get to know your own body.
Emma James
It was getting late, but sleep was the furthest thing from my racing mind. Apparently that was not the case for Mr. Sugar Buns. He lay back, closed his eyes, and threw an arm over his forehead, his favorite sleeping position. I could hardly have that. So, I crawled on top of him and started chest compressions. It seemed like the right thing to do. "What are you doing?" he asked without removing his arm. "Giving you CPR." I pressed into his chest, trying not to lose count. Wearing a red-and-black football jersey and boxers that read, DRIVERS WANTED. SEE INSIDE FOR DETAILS, I'd straddled him and now worked furiously to save his life, my focus like that of a seasoned trauma nurse. Or a seasoned pot roast. It was hard to say. "I'm not sure I'm in the market," he said, his voice smooth and filled with a humor I found appalling. He clearly didn't appreciate my dedication. "Damn it, man! I'm trying to save your life! Don't interrupt." A sensuous grin slid across his face. He tucked his arms behind his head while I worked. I finished my count, leaned down, put my lips on his, and blew. He laughed softly, the sound rumbling from his chest, deep and sexy, as he took my breath into his lungs. That part down, I went back to counting chest compressions. "Don't you die on me!" And praying. After another round, he asked, "Am I going to make it?" "It's touch-and-go. I'm going to have to bring out the defibrillator." "We have a defibrillator?" he asked, quirking a brow, clearly impressed. I reached for my phone. "I have an app. Hold on." As I punched buttons, I realized a major flaw in my plan. I needed a second phone. I could hardly shock him with only one paddle. I reached over and grabbed his phone as well. Started punching buttons. Rolled my eyes. "You don't have the app," I said from between clenched teeth. "I had no idea smartphones were so versatile." "I'll just have to download it. It'll just take a sec." "Do I have that long?" Humor sparkled in his eyes as he waited for me to find the app. I'd forgotten the name of it, so I had to go back to my phone, then back to his, then do a search, then download, then install it, all while my patient lay dying. Did no one understand that seconds counted? "Got it!" I said at last. I pressed one phone to his chest and one to the side of his rib cage like they did in the movies, and yelled, "Clear!" Granted, I didn't get off him or anything as the electrical charge riddled his body, slammed his heart into action, and probably scorched his skin. Or that was my hope, anyway. He handled it well. One corner of his mouth twitched, but that was about it. He was such a trouper. After two more jolts of electricity--it had to be done--I leaned forward and pressed my fingertips to his throat. "Well?" he asked after a tense moment. I released a ragged sigh of relief,and my shoulders fell forward in exhaustion. "You're going to be okay, Mr. Farrow." Without warning, my patient pulled me into his arms and rolled me over, pinning me to the bed with his considerable weight and burying his face in my hair. It was a miracle!
Darynda Jones (The Curse of Tenth Grave (Charley Davidson, #10))
I let the monster take over. My lips moved and I spoke the words I’d heard before, words that would unlock the ultimate power—words that Alex spoke once before. I didn’t understand how this worked. I also didn’t care. “Θάρρος.” Courage. A shock rippled across my body, followed by a wealth of warmth. Determination poured into my chest. “Δύναµη,” I said. Strength. Another jolt of power hit me, charging me up. The warmth turned to heat, invading my muscles, breaking them down and rebuilding them rapidly. Someone shouted, a high-pitched scream. There was a yell, a rougher and heavier gasp. I kept going as I stepped forward, through the shades circling Atlas. “Απόλυτη εξουσία.” Absolute power. Amber light radiated through the room. Screams pitched higher as every cell in my body hummed with power. Glyphs appeared on my skin, swirling fast. The shades flew backward, revealing a transfixed Atlas. I finished it. “Αήττητο.
Jennifer L. Armentrout (The Power (Titan, #2))
Because, here’s the truth: life is catastrophe. The basic fact of existence—of walking around trying to feed ourselves and find friends and whatever else we do—is catastrophe. Forget all this ridiculous ‘Our Town’ nonsense everyone talks: the miracle of a newborn babe, the joy of one simple blossom, Life You Are Too Wonderful To Grasp, &c. For me—and I’ll keep repeating it doggedly till I die, till I fall over on my ungrateful nihilistic face and am too weak to say it: better never born, than born into this cesspool. Sinkhole of hospital beds, coffins, and broken hearts. No release, no appeal, no “do-overs” to employ a favored phrase of Xandra’s, no way forward but age and loss, and no way out but death. [“Complaints bureau!” I remember Boris grousing as a child, one afternoon at his house when we had got off on the vaguely metaphysical subject of our mothers: why they—angels, goddesses—had to die? while our awful fathers thrived, and boozed, and sprawled, and muddled on, and continued to stumble about and wreak havoc, in seemingly indefatigable health? “They took the wrong ones! Mistake was made! Everything is unfair! Who do we complain to, in this shitty place? Who is in charge here?”] And—maybe it’s ridiculous to go on in this vein, although it doesn’t matter since no one’s ever going to see this—but does it make any sense at all to know that it ends badly for all of us, even the happiest of us, and that we all lose everything that matters in the end—and yet to know as well, despite all this, as cruelly as the game is stacked, that it’s possible to play it with a kind of joy?
Donna Tartt (The Goldfinch)
There is a spirit greater than you, always within reach of you, but he only comes to take charge when your own spirit is lost, and cries out in his own tongue, which you cannot know but only feel, and it is in feeling that you will have orders. Yet not even in feeling, for I felt nothing, only surprise that I was going forward.
Richard Llewellyn (How Green Was My Valley)
Awareness of our lost youth and charged with foreknowledge of our fate is terribly burdensome. Nonetheless, awareness of inexorable forward march of time and comprehension of our transience is a key component of our humanness. Awareness of time serves as a constant jab in our flank. It shapes our sense of being and toys with our mental equilibrium.
Kilroy J. Oldster (Dead Toad Scrolls)
Sometimes, in prison, when he’d been lying awake at night staring at the bunk over his head, Johnny had thought that he missed Wolf most of all. Wasn’t that a damned sad commentary on his life? The dog whined again. Knowing he was being ridiculous, that he was liable to lose the hand at the wrist when the animal charged, Johnny nonetheless took a step forward,holding out his fingers for sniffing. “Wolf? Come here, boy.” Incredibly, the huge animal sank to its belly and slunk forward, behaving as if it wanted to believe but feared a cruel trick. Johnny dropped to his knees to greet it, his hands reaching out, burrowing in the coarse hide, stroking and scratching as the dog whined and licked and pawed him and butted him with its head. “Ah, Wolf,” he said as he accepted the truth at last, that this one thing that he had loved had been spared in order to greet him. Then, as the big head snuggled into his lap, he wrapped his arms around the dog’s thick neck and buried his face against the animal’s side. For the first time in eleven years, he wept.
Karen Robards (One Summer)
A look passed between Recevo and Karras. They could hear the rest of them crowded outside the door. Karras cradled the Thompson gun, pressed the butt tight against his ribs. "Well," he whispered. "Come on if you're gonna come." They charged into the room. Karras saw white fire as he heard the reports, heard Joey's gun explode, saw one man fall, heard Joey scream, watched Joey's fedora tumble by as if it had been blown by a strong wind. Karras squeezed the trigger, saw men diving through the gunsmoke, the doorframe disintegrating in spark and dust. He fell back to the floor from a blunt shock that felt like a hammer blow to his chest. Karras winced, got himself up onto the balls of his feet. He leaned his face against the table, rested it there, caught his breath. He listened to the others move about the room. Swim, you Greek bastard. And he was over the table, landing on his feet as softly as if he had landed in water. And they were there, the Welshman and the others, moving toward him, emptying their guns at once, the sound deafening now and riding over their caterwauling screams and the bottomless scream coming from his own mouth. Karras went forward, humming as his finger locked down on the trigger, the Tommy gun dancing crazily in his arms, the gunmen falling before him through the smoke and ejecting shells and the white gulls gliding against the perfect blue sky. Red flowers bloomed on the chests of the men who had come to take Peter Karras to the place where he was always meant to be.
George P. Pelecanos
I ask him if he tried to rape Nyla. “Laws are silent in times of war,” Tactus drawls. “Don’t quote Cicero to me,” I say. “You are held to a higher standard than a marauding centurion.” “In that, you’re hitting the mark at least. I am a superior creature descended from proud stock and glorious heritage. Might makes right, Darrow. If I can take, I may take. If I do take, I deserve to have. This is what Peerless believe.” “The measure of a man is what he does when he has power,” I say loudly. “Just come off it, Reaper,” Tactus drawls, confident in himself as all like him are. “She’s a spoil of war. My power took her. And before the strong, bend the weak.” “I’m stronger than you, Tactus,” I say. “So I can do with you as I wish. No?” He’s silent, realizing he’s fallen into a trap. “You are from a superior family to mine, Tactus. My parents are dead. I am the sole member of my family. But I am a superior creature to you.” He smirks at that. “Do you disagree?” I toss a knife at his feet and pull my own out. “I beg you to voice your concerns.” He does not pick his blade up. “So, by right of power, I can do with you as I like.” I announce that rape will never be permitted, and then I ask Nyla the punishment she would give. As she told me before, she says she wants no punishment. I make sure they know this, so there are no recriminations against her. Tactus and his armed supporters stare at her in surprise. They don’t understand why she would not take vengeance, but that doesn’t stop them from smiling wolfishly at one another, thinking their chief has dodged punishment. Then I speak. “But I say you get twenty lashes from a leather switch, Tactus. You tried to take something beyond the bounds of the game. You gave in to your pathetic animal instincts. Here that is less forgivable than murder; I hope you feel shame when you look back at this moment fifty years from now and realize your weakness. I hope you fear your sons and daughters knowing what you did to a fellow Gold. Until then, twenty lashes will serve.” Some of the Diana soldiers step forward in anger, but Pax hefts his axe on his shoulder and they shrink back, glaring at me. They gave me a fortress and I’m going to whip their favorite warrior. I see my army dying as Mustang pulls off Tactus’s shirt. He stares at me like a snake. I know what evil thoughts he’s thinking. I thought them of my floggers too. I whip him twenty brutal times, holding nothing back. Blood runs down his back. Pax nearly has to hack down one of the Diana soldiers to keep them from charging to stop the punishment. Tactus barely manages to stagger to his feet, wrath burning in his eyes. “A mistake,” he whispers to me. “Such a mistake.” Then I surprise him. I shove the switch into his hand and bring him close by cupping my hand around the back of his head. “You deserve to have your balls off, you selfish bastard,” I whisper to him. “This is my army,” I say more loudly. “This is my army. Its evils are mine as much as yours, as much as they are Tactus’s. Every time any of you commit a crime like this, something gratuitous and perverse, you will own it and I will own it with you, because when you do something wicked, it hurts all of us.” Tactus stands there like a fool. He’s confused. I shove him hard in the chest. He stumbles back. I follow him, shoving. “What were you going to do?” I push his hand holding the leather switch back toward his chest. “I don’t know what you mean …” he murmurs as I shove him. “Come on, man! You were going to shove your prick inside someone in my army. Why not whip me while you’re at it? Why not hurt me too? It’ll be easier. Milia won’t even try to stab you. I promise.” I shove him again. He looks around. No one speaks. I strip off my shirt and go to my knees. The air is cold. Knees on stone and snow. My eyes lock with Mustang’s. She winks at me and I feel like I can do anything.
Pierce Brown (Red Rising (Red Rising Saga, #1))
Matt said, “I need to go. I have other appointments today.” Without a single ounce of hesitation, he cupped Priss’s shoulders, drew her forward, and gave her a smacking kiss right on her slightly parted lips. It was a toss-up who was more surprised, Priss or Trace. Priss blinked rapidly, Trace snarled and Chris laughed at them both. “I enjoyed working with you, Priss. You were more than entertaining, and a font of information on all things kinky.” Trace narrowed his eyes. Was Matt trying to rile him? All things kinky? Just what the hell had they discussed? “What does that mean, Matt?” “She schooled us on the porn marketplace. Very informative.” After a meaningful glance at Trace, he turned back to Priss. “I hope to see you again.” She went still, unsure what to say. Trace filled in the silence. “Did you want to bill me, or get paid now?” “I almost hate to charge, it was all so fascinating.” Trace growled. “But you will.” Grinning, Matt said, “Yes.” As he turned away, he added, “I’ll get something in the mail to Dare. He can pass it along to you. I certainly trust you.” Matt’s emphasis meant that Priss didn’t trust him—not that Trace needed a reminder of that.
Lori Foster (Trace of Fever (Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor, #2))
In some organizations, they can succeed if they are simply good at making presentations to the board of directors or writing strategies or plans. The tragedy is that these talents mask real deficiencies in overall management capabilities. These talented performers run for cover when grubby operating decisions must be made and often fail miserably when they are charged with earning a profit, getting things done and moving an organization forward.
Tom Peters (In Search of Excellence: Lessons from America's Best-Run Companies)
The jury hung at eleven to one. Promptly a new jury was impaneled. During the second trial a member of the jury came forward to report a bribe attempt. He was excused and replaced by an alternate. This jury found Jimmy Hoffa not guilty. A crushed Bobby Kennedy still had the perjury charge against Hoffa to fall back on. But not for long. The perjury indictment relied on wiretapped conversations between Johnny Dio and Jimmy Hoffa. The wiretap had been authorized pursuant to New York State law and was a valid search and seizure of the telephone conversation under existing New York law. Unfortunately for Bobby, this was the beginning of the age of the Warren Court’s expansion of its control over state and local police procedures. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that such state-sanctioned wiretaps were unconstitutional and that any evidence obtained by the wiretaps or derived from them was “fruit of the poisonous tree.
Charles Brandt ("I Heard You Paint Houses", Updated Edition: Frank "The Irishman" Sheeran & Closing the Case on Jimmy Hoffa)
A preliminary hearing is a routine step on the way to a trial. It is one hundred percent the prosecution's show. The state is charged with presenting its case to the court and the judge then rules on whether there is sufficient evidence to take it forward to a jury trial. This isn't the reasonable doubt threshold. Not even close. The judge only has to decide if a preponderance of evidence supports the charges. If so, then the next stop is a full-blown trial.
Michael Connelly (The Fifth Witness (The Lincoln Lawyer, #4; Harry Bosch Universe, #23))
Quote from Father Tim during a sermon given after the former priest was found after a suicide attempt. "      'Father Talbot has charged me to tell you that he is deeply repentant for not serving you as God appointed him to do, and as you hoped and needed him to do.         'He wished very much to bring you this message himself, but he could not.  He bids you goodbye with a love he confesses he never felt toward you...until this day.  He asks--and I quote him--that you might find it in your hearts to forgive him his manifold sins against God and this parish.'         He felt the tears on his face before he knew he was weeping, and realized instinctively that he would have no control over the display.  He could not effectively carry on, no even turn his face away or flee the pulpit.  He was in the grip of a wild grief that paralyzed everything but itself.          He wept face forward, then, into the gale of those aghast at what was happening, wept for the wounds of any clergy gone out into a darkness of self-loathing and beguilement; for the loss and sorrow of those who could not believe, or who had once believed but lost all sense of shield and buckler and any notion of God's radical tenderness, for the ceaseless besettings of the flesh, for the worthless idols of his own and of others; for those sidetracked, stumped, frozen, flung away, for those both false and true, the just and the unjust, the quick and the dead.           He wept for himself, for the pain of the long years and the exquisite satisfactions of the faith, for the holiness of the mundane, for the thrashing exhaustions and the endless dyings and resurrectings that malign the soul incarnate.           It had come to this, a thing he had subtly feared for more than forty years--that he would weep before the many--and he saw that his wife would not try to talk him down from this precipice, she would trust him to come down himself without falling or leaping.         And people wept with him, most of them.  Some turned away, and a few got up and left in a hurry, fearful of the swift and astounding movement of the Holy Spirit among them, and he, too, was afraid--of crying aloud in a kind of ancient howl and humiliating himself still further.  But the cry burned out somewhere inside and he swallowed down what remained and the organ began to play, softly, piously.  He wished it to be loud and gregarious, at the top of its lungs--Bach or Beethoven, and not the saccharine pipe that summoned the vagabond sins of thought, word, and deed to the altar, though come to think of it, the rail was the very place to be right now, at once, as he, they, all were desperate for the salve of the cup, the Bread of Heaven.             And then it was over.  He reached into the pocket of his alb and wondered again how so many manage to make in this world without carrying a handkerchief.  And he drew it out and wiped his eyes and blew his nose as he might at home, and said, 'Amen.'                 And the people said, 'Amen.
Jan Karon
In addition to the picture of women as evil is the impossible cultural model of manliness that boys are expected to emulate. This model requires that a man be powerful, independent, invulnerable, in charge, and nonemotional. Certainly he must never be afraid of or dependent on women. No man can live up to this model because it doesn't allow for normal human emotions and needs. It is particularly unrealistic for the man whose childhood circumstances left him with a desperate neediness for a woman's love.
Susan Forward (Men Who Hate Women and the Women Who Love Them: When Loving Hurts and You Don't Know Why)
In 1996 Dorothy Mackey wrote an Op-ed piece, “Violence from comrades a fact of life for military women.” ABC News 20/ 20 did a segment on rape in the military. By November four women came forward at Aberdeen Proving Ground, in Maryland, about a pattern of rape by drill sergeants. In 1997 the military finds three black drill sergeants to scapegoat. They were sent to prison and this left the commanding generals and colonels untouched to retire quietly. The Army appointed a panel to investigate sexual harassment. One of the panelists was the sergeant Major of the Army, Eugene McKinney. On hearing his nomination, former associates and one officer came forward with charges of sexual coercion and misconduct. In 1998 he was acquitted of all charges after women spoke (of how they were being stigmatized, their careers stopped, and their characters questioned. A Congressional panel studied military investigative practices. In 1998, the Court of Appeals ruled against Dorothy Mackay. She had been outspoken on media and highly visible. There is an old Arabic saying “When the hen crows cut off her head.”“This court finds that Col. Milam and Lt. Col. Elmore were acting in the scope of their duties” in 1991-1992 when Capt. Mackey alleged they harassed, intimidated and assaulted her. A legislative remedy was asked for and she appealed to the Supreme Court. Of course the Supreme Court refused to hear the case in 1999, as it always has under the feres doctrine. Her case was cited to block the suit of one of the Aberdeen survivors as well!
Diane Chamberlain (Conduct Unbecoming: Rape, Torture, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from Military Commanders)
Later that afternoon with the Germans already in Trafalgar Square and advancing down Whitehall to take their position in the rear, the enemy unit advancing across St. James 'Park made their final charge. Several of those in the Downing Street position were already dead... and at last the Bren ceased its chatter, its last magazine emptied. Churchill reluctantly abandoned the machine-gun, drew his pistol and with great satisfaction, for it was a notoriously inaccurate weapon, shot dead the first German to reach the foot of the steps. As two more rushed forward, covered by a third in the distance, Winston Churchill moved out of the shelter of the sandbags, as if personally to bar the way up Downing Street. A German NCO, running up to find the cause of the unexpected hold-up, recognised him and shouted to the soldiers not to shoot, but he was too late. A burst of bullets from a machine-carbine caught the Prime Minister in the chest. He died instantly, his back to Downing Street, his face toward the enemy, his pistol still in his hand.
Norman Longmate
Do you know what day it is?” she asked, peering at him. “Don’t you?” “Here in Spindle Cove, we ladies have a schedule. Mondays are country walks. Tuesdays, sea bathing. Wednesdays, you’d find us in the garden.” She touched the back of her hand to his forehead. “What is it we do on Mondays?” “We didn’t get to Thursdays.” “Thursdays are irrelevant. I’m testing your ability to recall information. Do you remember Mondays?” He stifled a laugh. God, her touch felt good. If she kept petting and stroking him like this, he might very well go mad. “Tell me your name,” he said. “I promise to recall it.” A bit forward, perhaps. But any chance for formal introductions had already fallen casualty to the powder charge. Speaking of the powder charge, here came the brilliant mastermind of the sheep siege. Damn his eyes. “Are you well, miss?” Colin asked. “I’m well,” she answered. “I’m afraid I can’t say the same for your friend.” “Bram?” Colin prodded him with a boot. “You look all of a piece.” No thanks to you. “He’s completely addled, the poor soul.” The girl patted his cheek. “Was it the war? How long has he been like this?” “Like this?” Colin smirked down at him. “Oh, all his life.” “All his life?” “He’s my cousin. I should know.” A flush pressed to her cheeks, overwhelming her freckles. “If you’re his cousin, you should take better care of him. What are you thinking, allowing him to wander the countryside, waging war on flocks of sheep?” Ah, that was sweet. The lass cared. She would see him settled in a very comfortable asylum, she would. Perhaps Thursdays would be her day to visit and lay cool cloths to his brow. “I know, I know,” Colin replied gravely. “He’s a certifiable fool. Completely unstable. Sometimes the poor bastard even drools. But the hell of it is, he controls my fortune. Every last penny. I can’t tell him what to do.” “That’ll be enough,” Bram said. Time to put a stop to this nonsense. It was one thing to enjoy a moment’s rest and a woman’s touch, and another to surrender all pride. He gained his feet without too much struggle and helped her to a standing position, too. He managed a slight bow. “Lieutenant Colonel Victor Bramwell. I assure you, I’m in possession of perfect health, a sound mind, and one good-for-nothing cousin.” “I don’t understand,” she said. “Those blasts…” “Just powder charges. We embedded them in the road, to scare off the sheep.” “You laid black powder charges. To move a flock of sheep.” Pulling her hand from his grip, she studied the craters in the road. “Sir, I remain unconvinced of your sanity. But there’s no question you are male.” He raised a brow. “That much was never in doubt.” Her only answer was a faint deepening of her blush. “I assure you, all the lunacy is my cousin’s. Lord Payne was merely teasing, having a bit of sport at my expense.” “I see. And you were having a bit of sport at my expense, pretending to be injured.” “Come, now.” He leaned forward her and murmured, “Are you going to pretend you didn’t enjoy it?” Her eyebrows lifted. And lifted, until they formed perfect twin archer’s bows, ready to dispatch poison-tipped darts. “I’m going to pretend I didn’t hear that.
Tessa Dare (A Night to Surrender (Spindle Cove, #1))
The proposition that primitive dream imagery might reproduce, albeit imperfectly, the experience of one's ancestors, including their terrors, was rather too existentially charged for post-modern sensitivities, for which the meaningless hypothesis of memory de-junking was much more appealing. Even worse, the notion that one's own ideation, one's own monsters, or indeed oneself as a monster, might be transmitted forward to future generations threatened deeply assumptions about the privacy of the mind and an individual's discretionary power of inviolable concealment over unedifying thoughts.
Robert Edeson
They sit beside each other on one of the sofas, Warwick leaning forward with his elbows on his knees, Joanne resting back with her arms behind her head. Never known as advocates of establishmentarianism, they have been applauded, ridiculed, and misunderstood by the media, and, in particular, criticized for their avarice. They have agreed to do this interview without "cabbage" (payment), but generally charge ten to twenty thousand dollars for the privilege. Even so, why should they be castigated for exploiting a medium that has exploited them? They see the situation simply enough: quid pro quo, and hold the mustard.
Antonella Gambotto-Burke
You all right, sis?” Kaden asked, pausing between heaping spoonfuls of oatmeal. “Of course.” “You look a little stressed.” “You would, too, if you were going to run the country,” I teased. “Sometimes I think about that,” he said, getting all serious. “Like, what if a disease swept over all of Illéa, and you and Mom and Dad and Ahren got sick and died. Then I’d be in charge and have to figure out everything on my own.” In my periphery I saw Dad lean forward, listening to his son. “That’s a little morbid, Kaden.” Kaden shrugged. “It’s always good to plan ahead.” I propped my chin on my hand. “So what would be King Kaden’s first order of business?” “Vaccinations, obviously.” I
Kiera Cass (The Heir (The Selection, #4))
Roosevelt fought hard for the United States to host the opening session [of the United Nations]; it seemed a magnanimous gesture to most of the delegates. But the real reason was to better enable the United States to eavesdrop on its guests. Coded messages between the foreign delegations and their distant capitals passed through U.S. telegraph lines in San Francisco. With wartime censorship laws still in effect, Western Union and the other commercial telegraph companies were required to pass on both coded and uncoded telegrams to U.S. Army codebreakers. Once the signals were captured, a specially designed time-delay device activated to allow recorders to be switched on. Devices were also developed to divert a single signal to several receivers. The intercepts were then forwarded to Arlington Hall, headquarters of the Army codebreakers, over forty-six special secure teletype lines. By the summer of 1945 the average number of daily messages had grown to 289,802, from only 46,865 in February 1943. The same soldiers who only a few weeks earlier had been deciphering German battle plans were now unraveling the codes and ciphers wound tightly around Argentine negotiating points. During the San Francisco Conference, for example, American codebreakers were reading messages sent to and from the French delegation, which was using the Hagelin M-209, a complex six-wheel cipher machine broken by the Army Security Agency during the war. The decrypts revealed how desperate France had become to maintain its image as a major world power after the war. On April 29, for example, Fouques Duparc, the secretary general of the French delegation, complained in an encrypted note to General Charles de Gaulle in Paris that France was not chosen to be one of the "inviting powers" to the conference. "Our inclusion among the sponsoring powers," he wrote, "would have signified, in the eyes of all, our return to our traditional place in the world." In charge of the San Francisco eavesdropping and codebreaking operation was Lieutenant Colonel Frank B. Rowlett, the protégé of William F. Friedman. Rowlett was relieved when the conference finally ended, and he considered it a great success. "Pressure of work due to the San Francisco Conference has at last abated," he wrote, "and the 24-hour day has been shortened. The feeling in the Branch is that the success of the Conference may owe a great deal to its contribution." The San Francisco Conference served as an important demonstration of the usefulness of peacetime signals intelligence. Impressive was not just the volume of messages intercepted but also the wide range of countries whose secrets could be read. Messages from Colombia provided details on quiet disagreements between Russia and its satellite nations as well as on "Russia's prejudice toward the Latin American countries." Spanish decrypts indicated that their diplomats in San Francisco were warned to oppose a number of Russian moves: "Red maneuver . . . must be stopped at once," said one. A Czechoslovakian message indicated that nation's opposition to the admission of Argentina to the UN. From the very moment of its birth, the United Nations was a microcosm of East-West spying. Just as with the founding conference, the United States pushed hard to locate the organization on American soil, largely to accommodate the eavesdroppers and codebreakers of NSA and its predecessors.
James Bamford (Body of Secrets: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency from the Cold War Through the Dawn of a New Century)
I know what the problem is.” Curran pulled his shoulders back and flexed, warming up a little. I stole a glance. He had decided to fight in jeans and an old black T-shirt, from which he’d torn the sleeves. Probably his workout shirt. His biceps were carved, the muscle defined and built by countless exertions, neither too bulky nor too lean. Perfect. Kissing him might make me guilty of catastrophically bad judgment, but at least nobody could fault my taste. The trick was not to kiss him again. Once could be an accident; twice was trouble. “You said something?” I arched an eyebrow at him. Nonchalance—best camouflage for drooling. Both the werebison and the swordsman looked ready to charge: the muscles of their legs tense, leaning forward slightly on their toes. They seemed to be terribly sure that we would stay in one place and wait for them. Curran was looking at their legs, too. They must be expecting a distraction from the lamia. She sat cocooned in magic, holding on with both hands as it strained on its leash. “I said, I know why you’re afraid to fight with me.” “And why is that?” If he flexed again, I’d have to implement emergency measures. Maybe I could kick some sand at him or something. Hard to look hot brushing sand out of your eyes. “You want me.” Oh boy. “You can’t resist my subtle charm, so you’re afraid you’re going to make a spectacle out of yourself.” “You know what? Don’t talk to me.
Ilona Andrews (Magic Strikes (Kate Daniels, #3))
And what could Billy know of man except of man as a mere sailor? And the old-fashioned sailor, the veritable man before the mast, the sailor from boyhood up, he, though indeed of the same species as a landsman, is in some respects singularly distinct from him. The sailor is frankness, the landsman is finesse. Life is not a game with the sailor, demanding the long head—no intricate games of chess where few moves are made in straight-forwardness and ends are attained by indirection, an oblique, tedious, barren game hardly worth that poor candle burnt out in playing it. Yes, as a class, sailors are in character a juvenile race. Even their deviations are marked by juvenility, this more especially holding true with the sailors of Billy’s time. Then too, certain things which apply to all sailors do more pointedly operate here and there upon the junior one. Every sailor, too, is accustomed to obey orders without debating them; his life afloat is externally ruled for him; he is not brought into that promiscuous commerce with mankind where unobstructed free agency on equal terms—equal superficially, at least—soon teaches one that unless upon occasion he exercise a distrust keen in proportion to the fairness of the appearance, some foul turn may be served him. A ruled undemonstrative distrustfulness is so habitual, not with businessmen so much as with men who know their kind in less shallow relations than business, namely, certain men of the world, that they come at last to employ it all but unconsciously; and some of them would very likely feel real surprise at being charged with it as one of their general characteristics. 17
Herman Melville (Billy Budd, Bartleby, and Other Stories)
Come on, Bob, kill it!” “I’m trying, Tom. It won’t stop moving.” I looked at Wolf and whispered, “What do you think they are trying to kill?” Wolf shrugged. “Let’s go check it out.” We snuck forward until we could get a visual on what was happening. We saw that there were two large slimes and one baby slime. Judging by the way the large slimes were protecting the baby, I assumed it was their child rather than a random baby slime. The two players were slashing at the large slimes who were trying to defend themselves but failing. Eventually the players chopped the two large slimes into medium slimes, then into small slimes until they had finally killed all the pieces. That left the baby slime all alone. Bob and Tom looked at each other. “I think we should kill it,” said Tom. “Otherwise, it’s going to grow into an adult slime and try to get its revenge on us.” Where have I heard this story before? Bob laughed. “Slimes are stupid. It won’t be able to get revenge because it will be dead.” The players began to move forward to the baby slime. And that’s when something snapped in me. I was reminded of the night my parents sacrificed their lives for me. I couldn’t let this baby slime be killed. I jumped up and rushed to the players. Wolf shout-whispered, “No! Don’t do it!” I didn’t care. I ran up to the two players and without giving them a chance to surrender, mercilessly assassinated them. The baby slime looked at me with fear in its eyes and backed away, fearful that I would kill it too. But I didn’t. I put my sword back into my inventory and reached down and gently picked up the slime. “Can you talk?” I asked. The slime made cooing and booping noises, but apparently was too young to be able to speak yet. “I wish I could talk to you, Child. I would tell you that everything is going to be alright. I’ll be your new guardian.” Wolf arrived by my side a moment later. “It’s not part of the Way to kill players unless the killing falls under a specific rule or arises from self-defense.” I shot a look at Wolf. “I was defending the life of another. Is that not the same as self-defense?” “I guess, but it’s … hurrr … it’s a slime.” “Are you saying a slime has less right to be alive than us?” “I’m not saying that, but now that you mention it….” “Shut up. I’m taking charge of this child.” Wolf shook his head. “You realize that according to the Way, if you take the life of an orphan into your hands you have to protect it and see that it makes it to adulthood, just as I have with you.
Dr. Block (The Ballad of Winston the Wandering Trader, Book 1 (The Ballad of Winston #1))
Her eyes flicker, so I know she hears me. She says nothing, just checks the chains on my legs and arms and then nods to the Commandant. My mother reads the charges against me, which I don’t pay much attention to, and pronounces the punishment, which I also ignore. Dead is dead, no matter how it happens. Helene steps forward and lifts her ax. It will be one clean sweep, left to right. Air. Neck. Air. Elias dead. Now it hits me. This is it. This is the end. Martial tradition says a soldier who dies well dances among the stars, battling foes for all eternity. Is that what awaits me? Or will I slip into endless darkness, unbroken and quiet? Uneasiness latches onto me, like it’s been waiting around a corner all this time and only now has the gall to emerge. Where do I fix my eyes? On the crowd? The sky? I want comfort. I know I won’t find any. I
Sabaa Tahir (An Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes, #1))
Ubiquitous surveillance means that anyone could be convicted of lawbreaking, once the police set their minds to it. It is incredibly dangerous to live in a world where everything you do can be stored and brought forward as evidence against you at some later date. There is significant danger in allowing the police to dig into these large data sets and find “evidence” of wrongdoing, especially in a country like the US with so many vague and punitive laws, which give prosecutors discretion over whom to charge with what, and with overly broad material witness laws. This is especially true given the expansion of the legally loaded terms “terrorism,” to include conventional criminals, and “weapons of mass destruction,” to include almost anything, including a sawed-off shotgun. The US terminology is so broad that someone who donates $10 to Hamas’s humanitarian arm could be considered a terrorist.
Bruce Schneier (Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World)
This is not the “rom-com” depiction of love. Authentic love doesn’t always feel “good” or even romantic. The cycles of emotional addiction that we commonly associate with romance aren’t activated, so it doesn’t have the charge of excitement born of fear of abandonment or withdrawal of love and support. It is a grounded state. You do not need to perform in a certain way or hide parts of yourself to receive love. You will still feel bored or unsettled. You will still find yourself attracted to other people and may even mourn the loss of the single life. Conscious relationships aren’t fairy tales. There’s no “You complete me.” There’s no smile and poof!—living happily ever after. Like everything else you have encountered so far, authentic love requires work. The path forward is to become aware of the role of self-betrayal in your trauma bonds and the role that you can play in honoring your own needs.
Nicole LePera (How to Do the Work: Recognize Your Patterns, Heal from Your Past, and Create Your Self)
The backwards-moving electron when viewed with time moving forwards appears the same as an ordinary electron, except it's attracted to normal electrons-we say it has a "positive charge." (Had I included the effects of polarization, it would be apparent why the sign of j for the backwards-moving electron appears reversed, making the charge appear positive.) For this reason it's called a "positron." The positron is a sister particle to the electron, and is an example of an "anti-particle." This phenomenon is general. Every particle in Nature has an amplitude to move backwards in time, and therefore has an anti-particle. When a particle and its anti-particle collide, they annihilate each other and form other particles. (For positrons and electrons annihilating, it is usually a photon or two.) And what about photons? Photons look exactly the same in all respects when they travel backwards in time-as we saw earlier-so they are their own anti-particles. You see how clever we are at making an exception part of the rule!
Richard P. Feynman (QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter)
Lieutenant Rider Sinclar stretched an arm upward, neatly catching the ball. He pivoted quickly, but missed tagging Willie by a hair as she ran by him. His mouth set in a line of grim determination, he charged after her. Launching himself forward and wrapping his arms around her, he slammed them both to the desert floor. A puff of dust filled his nostrils and settled on his sweat-dampened face. Winded, it was a moment before the unexpected softness filling Rider's left palm penetrated his senses. "What the..." Naw,couldn't be, he assured himself. But he queezed the soft globe in his hand, and there was no mistaking the pleasantly familiar roundness of a woman's breast. "Lord Almighty! It's a woman!" Willie filled her deflated lungs and gasped angrily. "Now that you got that figured out,get off me! Can't you see that my fingers are touching the base? I'm safe, you damn fool." "Safe?" Rider repeated incredulously, still trying to grasp the fact that he'd just tackled a woman. "Hell, you're lucky that fall didn't break you in two.
Charlotte McPherren (Song of the Willow)
The expensive act of planning on late When you’re late, there’s not a lot of room for choice or decision or initiative. When you’re late, the path is well lit, and the choices are clear. Run! Run down the path you’ve run down before. Late is a tool for people unable to find the guts to stand for their acts. Late gives us cover; it permits us to trample forward, without creativity or panache. “Can’t you see I’m late!” we shout, as we do what we have to do, without even pausing to think about what we could do instead. Late might be useful, except that late is incredibly expensive. This strategy, the one we choose so we can avoid the fear of choice, costs us in so many ways. It degrades quality, misses airplanes, charges overtime, and shuts down those around us. It’s also exhausting. The alternative to planning on late is to initiate before it’s required, to ship before deadline, to put the idea out there before the crisis hits. This act of bravery actually gives you influence, leverage, and control in a way that planning on late never can.
Seth Godin (Poke the Box)
The danger was not gone—Helen knew that. Each day spent together, the existence of this tiny charge was in her hands. It suddenly seemed the most perplexing fact of life—it was up to flawed, bruised, broken adults to bring up angels. Helen wanted to offer the child a place of safety, but no matter where Lyric went, that could not be found. Not for sure. If she stayed, they would each risk hurt, loss, and suffering. But it was no more than anyone else could offer. Helen realized, as she brushed a strand from the girl’s face and tucked it behind her small ear, that if she didn’t take that risk, she could be risking even more. For both of them. Lyric blinked, yet the look in her eyes never left. Helen closed her own eyes and leaned forward, placing a soft kiss on the child’s forehead. I will fail. She knew. I will fail you thousands of times more. But if we stay together, I will spend every day we have doing all I can to keep you from losing that look in your eyes. She nodded slowly to herself, to the unspoken words inside her. When you see me, I hope you always see a home.
Corinne Beenfield (The Ocean's Daughter : (National Indie Excellence Award Finalist))
decades. Why are revolutions so rare? Why do the masses sometimes clap and cheer for centuries on end, doing everything the man on the balcony commands them, even though they could in theory charge forward at any moment and tear him to pieces? Ceaus¸escu and his cronies dominated 20 million Romanians for four decades because they ensured three vital conditions. First, they placed loyal communist apparatchiks in control of all networks of cooperation, such as the army, trade unions and even sports associations. Second, they prevented the creation of any rival organisations – whether political, economic or social – which might serve as a basis for anti-communist cooperation. Third, they relied on the support of sister communist parties in the Soviet Union and eastern Europe. Despite occasional tensions, these parties helped each other in times of need, or at least guaranteed that no outsider poked his nose into the socialist paradise. Under such conditions, despite all the hardship and suffering inflicted on them by the ruling elite, the 20 million Romanians were unable to organise any effective opposition.
Yuval Noah Harari (Homo Deus: ‘An intoxicating brew of science, philosophy and futurism’ Mail on Sunday)
The 14th Tennessee, for example, had left Clarksville in 1861 with 960 men on its muster roll, and in the past two years, most of which time their homeland had been under Union occupation, they had fought on all the major battlefields of Virginia. When Archer took them across Willoughby Run on the opening day of Gettysburg they counted 365 bayonets; by sunset they were down to barely 60. These five dozen survivors, led by a captain on the third day, went forward with Fry against Cemetery Ridge, and there—where the low stone wall jogged west, then south, to form what was known thereafter as the angle—all but three of the remaining 60 fell. This was only one among the forty-odd regiments in the charge; there were others that suffered about as cruelly; but to those wives and sweethearts, parents and sisters and younger brothers who had remained at its point of origin, fifty miles down the Cumberland from Nashville, the news came hard. “Thus the band that once was the pride of Clarksville has fallen,” a citizen lamented, and he went on to explain something of what he and those around him felt. “A gloom rests over the city; the hopes and affections of the people were wrapped in the regiment.… Ah! what a terrible responsibility rests upon those who inaugurated this unholy war.
Shelby Foote (The Civil War, Vol. 2: Fredericksburg to Meridian)
What gets in the way of living with vitality," Tejpal asked. Everything, I thought to myself. "Wounds," Tejpal said. She talked about the importance of forgiveness, and how the most important step in forgiveness is to allow yourself to feel the pain of the hurt you received. Only then would the pain begin to heal. Suddenly, Dracula leaned forward and spoke up. Even though this wasn't really a situation where you were supposed to speak without being called on. "That's not true," she blurted out angrily, her Long Island accent pulling all her vowels downward. "There are some things people do that hurt you forever and that cause scars that will never heal. Just 'cause you think about them doesn't mean they're going away." All the women in the room turned around to stare at this angry person. This was supposed to be a touchy-feely, self-discovery happy place where Tejpal was in charge. You are not supposed to attack Tejpal. I sensed that people thought she was crazy and normally I would find her as annoying for not getting it as everyone else was, but instead I felt a wave of deep compassion. It was the first time during my visit to Miraval that I felt attuned to how deeply, painfully exposed people can allow themselves to be when there's even a sliver of permission to be honest.
Jessi Klein (You'll Grow Out of It)
Everyone jumps to their stations and I meet Richard and Amanda at ours. We're in charge of assembling spoonfuls of sweet-potato casserole but with a Spanish twist. That was my idea, a Southern holiday meal meets a twist of southern Spain. Most of the hors d'oeuvres were prepared beforehand so we just need to get them in the oven and put on the finishing garnishes. I begin scooping sweet-potato casserole onto ceramic serving spoons while Richard garnishes them with sugared walnuts and Spanish sausage. Three months ago, most of us had never even tried Spanish cuisine, and today we're hosting a semi-Spanish-themed banquet. We work like machines. I spoon and pass the bite to my left. Richard adds walnuts and sausage, and passes the plate. Amanda adds parsley and cleans the plate. Chili aioli would make this bomb. A sweet and savory bite. I almost walk to the spice cabinet, then stop myself. That's not the recipe. We make trays and trays of food; some are set forward for the students who will begin serving. These are the skewers of winter veggies and single-serve portions of herbed stuffing with jamón ibérico- the less hearty bites. While the first course is being distributed the rest of us begin wiping down our stations. Our mini bites of sweet potato and mac and cheese will be going out next.
Elizabeth Acevedo (With the Fire on High)
As Merripen gave the ribbons to a stableman at the mews, Amelia glanced toward the end of the alley. A pair of street youths crouched near a tiny fire, roasting something on sticks. Amelia did not want to speculate on the nature of the objects being heated. Her attention moved to a group—three men and a woman—illuminated in the uncertain blaze. It appeared two of the men were engaged in fisticuffs. However, they were so inebriated that their contest looked like a performance of dancing bears. The woman’s gown was made of gaudily colored fabric, the bodice gaping to reveal the plump hills of her breasts. She seemed amused by the spectacle of two men battling over her, while a third attempted to break up the fracas. “’Ere now, my fine jacks,” the woman called out in a Cockney accent, “I said I’d take ye both on—no need for a cockfight!” “Stay back,” Merripen murmured. Pretending not to hear, Amelia drew closer for a better view. It wasn’t the sight of the brawl that was so interesting—even their village, peaceful little Primrose Place, had its share of fistfights. All men, no matter what their situation, occasionally succumbed to their lower natures. What attracted Amelia’s notice was the third man, the would-be peacemaker, as he darted between the drunken fools and attempted to reason with them. He was every bit as well dressed as the gentlemen on either side … but it was obvious this man was no gentleman. He was black-haired and swarthy and exotic. And he moved with the swift grace of a cat, easily avoiding the swipes and lunges of his opponents. “My lords,” he was saying in a reasonable tone, sounding relaxed even as he blocked a heavy fist with his forearm. “I’m afraid you’ll both have to stop this now, or I’ll be forced to—” He broke off and dodged to the side just as the man behind him leaped. The prostitute cackled at the sight. “They got you on the ’op tonight, Rohan,” she exclaimed. Dodging back into the fray, Rohan attempted to break it up once more. “My lords, surely you must know”—he ducked beneath the swift arc of a fist—“that violence”—he blocked a right hook—“never solves anything.” “Bugger you!” one of the men said, and butted forward like a deranged goat. Rohan stepped aside and allowed him to charge straight into the side of the building. The attacker collapsed with a groan and lay gasping on the ground. His opponent’s reaction was singularly ungrateful. Instead of thanking the dark-haired man for putting a stop to the fight, he growled, “Curse you for interfering, Rohan! I would’ve knocked the stuffing from him!” He charged forth with his fists churning like windmill blades. Rohan evaded a left cross and deftly flipped him to the ground. He stood over the prone figure, blotting his forehead with his sleeve. “Had enough?” he asked pleasantly. “Yes? Good. Please allow me to help you to your feet, my lord.
Lisa Kleypas (Mine Till Midnight (The Hathaways, #1))
A few minutes later Elizabeth watched Lucinda emerge from the cottage with Ian, but there was no way to guess from their closed expressions what they’d discussed. In fact, the only person betraying any emotion at all was Jake Wiley as he led two horses into the yard. And his face, Elizabeth noted with confusion-which had been stormy when he went off to saddle the horses-was now wreathed in a smile of unrestrained glee. With a sweep of his arm and a bow he gestured toward a swaybacked black horse with an old sidesaddle upon its back. “Here’s your mount, ma’am,” he told Lucinda, grinning. “His name’s Attila.” Lucinda cast a disdainful eye over the beast as she transferred her umbrella to her right hand and pulled on her black gloves. “Have you nothing better?” “No, ma’am. Ian’s horse has a hurt foot.” “Oh, very well,” said Lucinda, walking briskly forward, but as she came within reach the black suddenly bared his teeth and lunged. Lucinda struck him between the ears with her umbrella without so much as a pause in her step. “Cease!” she commanded, and, ignoring the animal’s startled grunt of pain, she continued around to his other side to mount. “You brought it on yourself,” she told the horse as Jake held Attila’s head, and Ian Thornton helped her into the sidesaddle. The whites of Attila’s eyes showed as he warily watched her land in his saddle and settle herself. The moment Jake handed Lucinda the reins Attila began to leap sideways and twist around in restless annoyance. “I do not countenance ill-tempered animals,” she warned the horse in her severest tone, and when he refused to heed her and continued his threatening antics she hauled up sharply on his reins and simultaneously gave him a sharp jab in the flank with her umbrella. Attila let out a yelping complaint, broke into a quick, animated trot, and headed obediently down the drive. “If that don’t beat all!” Jake said furiously, glowering after the pair, and then at Ian. “That animal doesn’t know the meaning of the word loyalty!” Without waiting for a reply Jake swung into his saddle and cantered down the lane after them. Absolutely baffled over everyone’s behavior this morning, Elizabeth cast a puzzled, sideways glance at the silent man beside her, then gaped at him in amazement. The unpredictable man was staring after Lucinda, his hands shoved into his pockets, a cigar clamped between his white teeth, his face transformed by a sweeping grin. Drawing the obvious conclusion that these odd reactions from the men were somehow related to Lucinda’s skillful handling of an obstinate horse, Elizabeth commented, “Lucinda’s uncle raised horses, I believe.” Almost reluctantly, Ian transferred his admiring gaze from Lucinda’s rigid back to Elizabeth. His brows rose. “An amazing woman,” he stated. “Is there any situation of which she can’t take charge?” “None that I’ve ever seen,” Elizabeth said with a chuckle; then she felt self-conscious because his smile faded abruptly, and his manner became detached and cool.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
A figure held his daughter in the rocker. In the dim light he couldn’t make out the features, but the sight of anyone he didn’t know sitting in Wendy’s rocker with their daughter was enough to scare the shit out of him. Judging by the shuddering movements of his daughter’s body it had frightened her too, had caused her to mewl. He wanted to charge forward and reclaim his daughter, but he didn’t know what would happen if he acted so quickly. What would he do if it hurt her? What would he do if it killed her? “What-what do you want? I’ll do anything just don’t take my daughter. She’s…all I have left.” The figure stopped rocking and slowly eased its way to its feet. There’s not much light in the room but as it moved closer to the bed and it settled the baby in her crib, he saw just enough of her face in the moonlight. “Wendy?” His voice is as full of horror as it is with awe. He can’t help but be horrified at the sight of her now, the way that death has changed her, making her a terrible figure indeed. Her eyes are strange; some depth, some dark and terrible nothing has swallowed up all of her light, and in this first moment he swears he can feel the awful cold of that operating room coming off of her flesh. She is so small and so hard to look at, as if his mind can’t quite focus on her form. Through the bars of the crib he can see her anger and hear the terrible, alien sound of her hiss. “What do you want?” She doesn’t answer him, staring cold and blank through those stark white bars, and then she was scrambling toward him across the floor, making him press flat against the wall to get away from her skittering shape.
Amanda M. Lyons (Wendy Won't Go)
If we ascribe the ejection of the proton to a Compton recoil from a quantum of 52 x 106 electron volts, then the nitrogen recoil atom arising by a similar process should have an energy not greater than about 400,000 volts, should produce not more than about 10,000 ions, and have a range in the air at N.T.P. of about 1-3mm. Actually, some of the recoil atoms in nitrogen produce at least 30,000 ions. In collaboration with Dr. Feather, I have observed the recoil atoms in an expansion chamber, and their range, estimated visually, was sometimes as much as 3mm. at N.T.P. These results, and others I have obtained in the course of the work, are very difficult to explain on the assumption that the radiation from beryllium is a quantum radiation, if energy and momentum are to be conserved in the collisions. The difficulties disappear, however, if it be assumed that the radiation consists of particles of mass 1 and charge 0, or neutrons. The capture of the a-particle by the Be9 nucleus may be supposed to result in the formation of a C12 nucleus and the emission of the neutron. From the energy relations of this process the velocity of the neutron emitted in the forward direction may well be about 3 x 109 cm. per sec. The collisions of this neutron with the atoms through which it passes give rise to the recoil atoms, and the observed energies of the recoil atoms are in fair agreement with this view. Moreover, I have observed that the protons ejected from hydrogen by the radiation emitted in the opposite direction to that of the exciting a-particle appear to have a much smaller range than those ejected by the forward radiation. This again receives a simple explanation on the neutron hypothesis.
James Chadwick
He strode forward, heedless of the murmuring that began among the women when they saw him. Then Sara turned, and her gaze met his. Instantly a guilty blush spread over her cheeks that told him all he needed to know about her intent. “Good afternoon, ladies,” he said in steely tones. “Class is over for today. Why don’t you all go up on deck and get a little fresh air?” When the women looked at Sara, she folded her hands primly in front of her and stared at him. “You have no right to dismiss my class, Captain Horn. Besides, we aren’t finished yet. I was telling them a story—” “I know. You were recounting Lysistrata.” Surprise flickered briefly in her eyes, but then turned smug and looked down her aristocratic little nose at him. “Yes, Lysistrata,” she said in a sweet voice that didn’t fool him for one minute. “Surely you have no objection to my educating the women on the great works of literature, Captain Horn.” “None at all.” He set his hands on his hips. “But I question your choice of material. Don’t you think Aristophanes is a bit beyond the abilities of your pupils?” He took great pleasure in the shock that passed over Sara’s face before she caught herself. Ignoring the rustle of whispers among the women, she stood a little straighter. “As if you know anything at all about Aristophanes.” “I don’t have to be an English lordling to know literature, Sara. I know all the blasted writers you English make so much of. Any one of them would have been a better choice for your charges than Aristophanes.” As she continued to glower at him unconvinced, he scoured his memory, searching through the hundreds of verse passages his English father had literally pounded into him. “You might have chosen Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, for example—‘fie, fie! Unknit that threatening unkind brow. / And dart not scornful glances from those eyes / to wound thy lord, thy king, thy governor.’” It had been a long time since he’d recited his father’s favorite passages of Shakespeare, but the words were as fresh as if he’d learned them only yesterday. And if anyone knew how to use literature as a weapon, he did. His father had delighted in tormenting him with quotes about unrepentant children. Sara gaped at him as the other women looked from him to her in confusion. “How . . . I mean . . . when could you possibly—” “Never mind that. The point us, you’re telling them the tale of Lysistrata when what you should be telling them is ‘thy husband is thy lord, thy life, thy keeper. /thy head, thy sovereign; one that cares for thee / and for thy maintenance commits his body / to painful labour by both sea and land.’” Her surprise at this knowledge of Shakespeare seemed to vanish as she recognized the passage he was quoting—the scene where Katherine accepts Petruchio as her lord and master before all her father’s guests. Sara’s eyes glittered as she stepped from among the women and came nearer to him. “We are not your wives yet. And Shakespeare also said ‘sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more / men were deceivers ever / one foot on sea and one on shore / to one thing constant never.’” “Ah, yes. Much Ado About Nothing. But even Beatrice changes her tune in the end, doesn’t she? I believe it’s Beatrice who says, ‘contempt, farewell! And maiden pride, adieu! / no glory lives behind the back of such./ and Benedick, love on, I will requite thee, / taming my wild heart to thy loving hand.’” “She was tricked into saying that! She was forced to acknowledge him as surely as you are forcing us!” “Forcing you?” he shouted. “You don’t know the meaning of force! I swear, if you—” He broke off when he realized that the women were staring at him with eyes round and fearful. Sara was twisting his words to make him sound like a monster. And succeeding, too, confound her.
Sabrina Jeffries (The Pirate Lord)
The Unknown Soldier A tale to tell in bloody rhyme, A story to last ’til the dawn of end’s time. Of a loving boy who left dear home, To bear his countries burdens; her honor to sow. –A common boy, I say, who left kith and kin, To battle der Kaiser and all that was therein. The Arsenal of Democracy was his kind, –To make the world safe–was their call and chime. Trained he thus in the far army camps, Drilled he often in the march and stamp. Laughed he did with new found friends, Lived they together for the noble end. Greyish mottled images clipp’ed and hack´ed– Black and white broke drum Ʀ…ɧ..λ..t…ʮ..m..ȿ —marching armies off to ’ttack. Images scratched, chopped, theatrical exaggerate, Confetti parades, shouts of high praise To where hell would sup and partake with all bon hope as the transport do them take Faded icons board the ship– To steel them away collaged together –joined in spirit and hip. Timeworn humanity of once what was To broker peace in eagles and doves. Mortal clay in the earth but to grapple and smite As warbirds ironed soar in heaven’s light. All called all forward to divinities’ kept date, Heroes all–all aces and fates. Paris–Used to sing and play at some cards, A common Joe everybody knew from own heart. He could have been called ‘the kid’ by the ‘old man,’ But a common private now taking orders to stand. Receiving letters from his shy sweet one, Read them over and over until they faded to none. Trained like hell with his Commander-in-Arms, –To avoid the dangers of a most bloody harm. Aye, this boy was mortal, true enough said, He could be one of thousands alive but now surely dead. How he sang and cried and ate the gruel of rations, And grumbled as soldiers do at war’s great contagions. Out–out to the battle this young did go, To become a man; the world to show. (An ocean away his mother cried so– To return her boy safe as far as the heavens go). Lay he down in trenched hole, With balls bursting overhead upon the knoll. Listened hardnfast to the “Sarge” bearing the news, —“We’re going over soon—” was all he knew. The whistle blew; up and over they went, Charging the Hun, his life to be spent (“Avoid the gas boys that’ll blister yer arse!!”). Running through wires razored and deadened trees, Fell he into a gouge to find in shelter of need (They say he bayoneted one just as he–, face to face in War’s Dance of trialed humanity). A nameless sonnuvabitch shell then did untimely RiiiiiiiP the field asunder in burrrstzʑ–and he tripped. And on the field of battle’s blood did he die, Faceless in a puddle as blurrs of ghosting men shrieked as they were fleeing by–. Perished he alone in the no man’s land, Surrounded by an army of his brother’s teeming bands . . . And a world away a mother sighed, Listened to the rain and lay down and cried. . . . Today lays the grave somber and white, Guarded decades long in both the dark and the light. Silent sentinels watch o’er and with him do walk, Speak they neither; their duty talks. Lone, stark sentries perform the unsmiling task, –Guarding this one dead–at the nation’s bequest. Cared over day and night in both rain or sun, Present changing of the guard and their duty is done (The changing of the guard ’tis poetry motioned A Nation defining itself–telling of rifles twirl-clicking under the intensest of devotions). This poem–of The Unknown, taken thus, Is rend eternal by Divinity’s Iron Trust. How he, a common soldier, gained the estate Of bearing his countries glory unto his unknown fate. Here rests in honored glory a warrior known but to God, Now rests he in peace from the conflict path he trod. He is our friend, our family, brother, our mother’s son –belongs he to us all, For he has stood in our place–heeding God’s final call.
Douglas M. Laurent
The defenders retreated, but in good order. A musket flamed and a ball shattered a marine’s collar bone, spinning him around. The soldiers screamed terrible battle-cries as they began their grim job of clearing the defenders off the parapet with quick professional close-quarter work. Gamble trod on a fallen ramrod and his boots crunched on burnt wadding. The French reached steps and began descending into the bastion. 'Bayonets!' Powell bellowed. 'I want bayonets!' 'Charge the bastards!' Gamble screamed, blinking another man's blood from his eyes. There was no drum to beat the order, but the marines and seamen surged forward. 'Tirez!' The French had been waiting, and their muskets jerked a handful of attackers backwards. Their officer, dressed in a patched brown coat, was horrified to see the savage looking men advance unperturbed by the musketry. His men were mostly conscripts and they had fired too high. Now they had only steel bayonets with which to defend themselves. 'Get in close, boys!' Powell ordered. 'A Shawnee Indian named Blue Jacket once told me that a naked woman stirs a man's blood, but a naked blade stirs his soul. So go in with the steel. Lunge! Recover! Stance!' 'Charge!' Gamble turned the order into a long, guttural yell of defiance. Those redcoats and seamen, with loaded weapons discharged them at the press of the defenders, and a man in the front rank went down with a dark hole in his forehead. Gamble saw the officer aim a pistol at him. A wounded Frenchman, half-crawling, tried to stab with his sabre-briquet, but Gamble kicked him in the head. He dashed forward, sword held low. The officer pulled the trigger, the weapon tugged the man's arm to his right, and the ball buzzed past Gamble's mangled ear as he jumped down into the gap made by the marines charge. A French corporal wearing a straw hat drove his bayonet at Gamble's belly, but he dodged to one side and rammed his bar-hilt into the man's dark eyes. 'Lunge! Recover! Stance!
David Cook (Heart of Oak (The Soldier Chronicles, #2))
Because I don’t care what anyone says or how often or winningly they say it: no one will ever, ever be able to persuade me that life is some awesome, rewarding treat. Because, here’s the truth: life is catastrophe. The basic fact of existence—of walking around trying to feed ourselves and find friends and whatever else we do—is catastrophe. Forget all this ridiculous ‘Our Town’ nonsense everyone talks: the miracle of a newborn babe, the joy of one simple blossom, Life You Are Too Wonderful To Grasp, &c. For me—and I’ll keep repeating it doggedly till I die, till I fall over on my ungrateful nihilistic face and am too weak to say it: better never born, than born into this cesspool. Sinkhole of hospital beds, coffins, and broken hearts. No release, no appeal, no “do-overs” to employ a favored phrase of Xandra’s, no way forward but age and loss, and no way out but death. [“Complaints bureau!” I remember Boris grousing as a child, one afternoon at his house when we had got off on the vaguely metaphysical subject of our mothers: why they—angels, goddesses—had to die? while our awful fathers thrived, and boozed, and sprawled, and muddled on, and continued to stumble about and wreak havoc, in seemingly indefatigable health? “They took the wrong ones! Mistake was made! Everything is unfair! Who do we complain to, in this shitty place? Who is in charge here?”] And—maybe it’s ridiculous to go on in this vein, although it doesn’t matter since no one’s ever going to see this—but does it make any sense at all to know that it ends badly for all of us, even the happiest of us, and that we all lose everything that matters in the end—and yet to know as well, despite all this, as cruelly as the game is stacked, that it’s possible to play it with a kind of joy? To try to make some meaning out of all this seems unbelievably quaint. Maybe I only see a pattern because I’ve been staring too long. But then again, to paraphrase Boris, maybe I see a pattern because it’s there.
Donna Tartt (The Goldfinch)
On trial were two men, one in a plaid shirt, and the other with a long, ZZ Top-style beard. They looked intimated by the crowd that had turned out, even though Plaid Shirt stood six foot four. He was the main perpetrator, charged with animal cruelty. He had brought his young son along during the bear killing for which he was on trial. The main reason the state managed to bring charges is that the hunters had made a videotape of their gruesome acts. The state trooper who confiscated the video couldn’t even testify at the time of the trial, he was so emotionally overcome. Then they showed the video in court, and I understood why. ZZ Top and Plaid Shirt cornered the bear cub. In order to preserve the integrity of the pelt, they attempted to kill the cub by stabbing it in the eyes. It was absolutely gut-wrenching to watch. The bear struggled for its life, but Plaid Shirt kept thrusting his knife, moving back as the animal twisted frantically away, then moving forward to stab again. The bear cub screamed, and it sounded eerily as though the bear was actually crying “Mama,” over and over. Plaid Shirt and ZZ Top sat unfazed in court. The bear screamed, “Mama, mama, mama.” From my place in the gallery, I watched as a towering man in a police uniform burst into tears and walked out of the courtroom. At the end of the video, Plaid Shirt brought his nine-year-old son over to stand triumphantly next to the dead bear cub. “Clearly, you deserve jail,” the judge told Plaid Shirt as he stood for sentencing. “Unfortunately, the jails are filled with people even more heinous than you: rapists, murderers, and armed robbers. So I am going to sentence you to three thousand hours of community service.” I approached the judge after the trial, furious that this man might end up collecting a bit of rubbish along the highway as his penance. “I want him,” I said, referring to Plaid Shirt. I said that I ran a wildlife rehabilitation facility and could use a volunteer. The first day Plaid Shirt showed up, he actually looked scared of me. He cleaned cages, fed animals, and worked hard. He liked the bobcat I was taking care of, “Bobby.” He said it was the biggest one he had ever seen. It would make a prize trophy. I asked him every question I could think of: where he hunted, how he hunted, why he hunted. Whether he had any kind of shirt other than plaid. I felt as though I was in the presence of true evil. For months he helped. He had some skills, like carpentry, and he could lift heavy things. He fulfilled his community service. In the end, I couldn’t tell if I had made any difference or not. I was only slightly encouraged by his parting words. “You know,” Plaid Shirt said, “I never knew cougars purred.
Terri Irwin (Steve & Me)
I was in a copse of pine trees, and the pine was overpowering my scent. The pheromones of the big cat mingled with the pine and I spun around. I was smelling and looking for the flash of white, but I couldn’t see it. I grew angry and I pawed at the earth. The aroma of the soil cleansed my nose as I leaned down and sniffed deeply. I slowly closed and opened my eyes. As I looked ahead I saw something. There, further on, I had another glimpse of the large white cat. She was stopped and her hindquarters were in the air. I stared, trying to figure out what she was doing. Her forepaws and head were on the ground, but her hind was wiggling. She was next to a tree, marking it, so I slowly paced in a zigzag pattern as I walked close to her. I was being cautious because poachers had been known to employ shifters to entice real animals in the wild. She turned her head and growled at me. I took it as an invite to come closer. I ran up to her and started circling. She was an albino panther as I thought. I paced closer, breathing deep. I was in the middle of Ohio, outside of a lost cougar and a few bobcats there were no big cats here, at least not counting lycanthropes, and this creature didn’t smell like one of those. Her rump almost wagged in anticipation, and I felt my tiger body respond. I circled her, taking a swipe in her direction to see if she was going to respond negatively to me. The pink eyes followed me and she growled. I walked up to her, sniffed her face and neckline. I didn’t smell any other male on her, and I walked to her raised rump. Burying my nose in her groin I smelled deeper, and she shifted her body. I felt it before I could see it. She was shifting, changing from albino panther to human. I sat on my hindquarters as I watched. Her white fur seemed to melt from her, sliding upwards, starting with her back legs. The flesh and fur on her feet slid forward, leaving human feet and calves. It was fully fleshed, unlike some lycanthrope changes when they’re younger. The calves of her legs appeared, and slowly slid up. The panther flesh was sliding forward, slowly and methodically. Across her ass and groin, now lower back and stomach. The pheromones I smelled earlier were coming from her, the human form. I stood and started pacing behind her, and her panther head shook in a very human gesture. I stopped, fighting the desire to lean forward and lick her wetness with my large tongue. The flesh was sliding forward and as her teats turned into breasts, I growled in need. Next were her shoulders and arms, then her head and hands. As the transformation ended, there was a pile of fur and flesh lying in front of her. Her human form was beautiful; a full figured woman with long white hair, that was perfectly natural. She looked to be in her early forties, but didn’t have a line on her face that she didn’t want. In the corners of her eyes were small, but beautiful, crow’s feet, laugh lines surrounded her mouth. She laid out with her former form under her, laying on it, propped up by her elbows. She smiled with the confidence of someone who was used to being in charge. Her long hair flowed around her shoulders, framing her body. She reminded me of someone, but I couldn’t figure out who.
Todd Misura (Divergence: Erotica from a Different Angle)