Something odd I just drew. Enjoyed drawing the impossible lines. Maybe I’ll redraw it with nice ink and paper, if I get the gumption.
Something odd I just drew. Enjoyed drawing the impossible lines. Maybe I’ll redraw it with nice ink and paper, if I get the gumption.
Um, I just wrote this for myself and it’s really silly. I’m posting it unedited because something in me says if I don’t post it now, I won’t post it at all.
Every time I talk shit on romances, I immediately try to write one. This is the closest to a real romance that I’ve probably ever written.
Maura was allergic to everything. Gluten, dairy, eggs, barley, tomatoes, and of course peanuts. She had so much EpiPen, she started to get high off it. When forced into social situations, she would sometimes take an allergen just so she could stick herself with the EpiPen. She was also a cutter and an alcoholic and an asthmatic.
Being thin and pale and unable to leave her filtered house without all kinds of defenses, she spent a great deal of her time playing video games inside. She was amazing at video games. She was top level in her RPG, high man in the FPS, and a real whiz at MineSweeper.
One day she heard about a new game called “Knock Your Socks Off.” She wasn’t sure what it was, but it got good reviews, so she downloaded it and started it up.
An electric shock from her computer jolted through her, she kicked spasmodically until her socks went sailing clear across the room.
When she woke up, a beautiful man was leaning over her. He had chromium gray eyes, a steel cut chin, and a build like… Shrek. Hm. “Are you okay?” He said.
She let him help her up before she realized he was in her room. “How did you get here? Who are you?”
“Oh, I’m sorry! I’m your neighbor Ralph. I just moved in.”
She looked around. Her computer was dead.
“Did the power go out?”
“Yes, I think there was a massive surge. I saw lightning flicker across my ceiling. Then I heard a loud crash from your room next to mine and when I came out to see, your door had blown clean off the hinges. What do you think could have done this? Does your computer draw a lot of power?”
“Oh… no…” she said weakly. Her computer was a Behemoth 10,000, top of the line, and waayy over the building’s electric capacity. She had saved for two years just to afford the payments.
Her throat felt itchy. Wait.. no door!? Oh no. She hadn’t taken any antihistamines or otherwise prepared for this attack on her respiratory system. Her face was already swelling up. She was going to die. She was getting delirious on the fear and adrenaline and lack of oxygen. Losing to delirium.
“Kiss me you mad impetuous fool,” she said thickly, and pulled him into a kiss.
Peanuts. He tasted of peanuts.
She was definitely going to die.
“WORTH IT,” she managed to choke out as everything went chromium gray.
The next thing she knew, she wasn’t dead. The EpiPen high was flooding through her. Her mouth tasted of strange lip balm. And peanuts. And misery. And climate control? Whence came this life-giving air filtration?
She shook her head to clear it, then regretted that move when a headache slammed into her like a Mack truck.
“Oh my god, you’re awake!” A magnificent baritone took the edge of her pain. There he was. Concerned gray eyes. High gloss full black hair. And… well, she’d always been fond of Shrek anyway.
“I realized your climate control was gone so I brought you into my place. I hope that’s okay.”
“You administered the EpiPen?”
“I’m a diabetic. I know how to give a shot.”
A diabetic… with climate control… EpiPen anytime..?
All of the sudden Maura couldn’t talk to him anymore. “Thank you,” she managed. “If you ever want a sugar free dessert… I have a lot of sugar free jello in my cabinet I didn’t know what to do with.”
His eyes widened. “I… love jello,” he said.
That was their first awkward moment together.
So they got married and lived together in nerdy bliss and rarely had to leave their house. Ralph invited a lot of people over though, and Maura was forced to make more friends.
Why are romances always so bad?
I’ll be honest here. I am still a girl. When I’m reading a well-written story, I do ship characters, and I get pretty amped up when they’re going to kiss.
When it comes to bona fide romance novels, I always end up irritated.
I tried a dating simulator last night. Apparently that’s like, a normal thing in Japan. I had to know.
The game I picked (thanks to https://otakuandshit.wordpress.com/2019/03/25/top-5-best-free-mobile-otome/ who reviewed them and is a much nicer person and more receptive audience to this kind of thing than I am) was a phone app called Samurai Love Ballad: PARTY. Great name so far. Samurais are awesome, love is wonderful, and who doesn’t like a party?
Well I played the damn thing for an hour and there was no party.
Everything was pink or white, with sparkly things and butterflies and flowers and elegant script, which was fun. I’ll tell you what, when the Japanese market towards women, they don’t pull any punches. I actually enjoy the insane levels of over-the-top girliness when it comes to visuals. This makes me feel a combination of amused and proud. We should all embrace pink with such outrageous, steamroll-your-eyeballs pride.
(“Sent to War by one lord… Love before death demands another… your own heart.” I believe they’re trying to express the same sentiment as Monty Python when they said, “Cake or death?”)
I just looked it up and the gameplay style is called a visual novel. Essentially this was an illustrated choose-your-own adventure story. It shows an image, usually of a beautiful anime guy, and displays text below. Sometimes his face will change depending on what he’s saying, but it’s all very static. This was fun, I enjoyed this format because I’m old and it reminded me of the old PC games like Might and Magic. It was more a novel than a game.
(Samurai Love Ballad PARTY: one of your potential beaux)
(Old-ass RPG: one of your potential murderers)
Here is the part I didn’t like.
The characters. Blarrgh. So I get to be a cute girl in the Edo era, which is fun. But for some reason, I’m an absolute dipshit. If I’m not making terrible decisions which get me in hot water, then some ugly asshole is trying to either hit me, or fondle me. My life is a kind of bad decision hell.
Enter about fourteen handsome men, who all save my ass, repeatedly. I have never felt more useless. This is too close to period accuracy. I really don’t want to go back to those days… O_O
Every one of them has a character flaw, which is interesting. But most of them have the same character flaw, in that they’re dicks. In Japan they call being a dick “tsundere.” This translates to something like, “cold outside, soft inside.” Tsunderes are deeply insecure and express their insecurities to their significant others through verbal abuse and/or angry outbursts. Every human on the planet except me finds this behavior extraordinarily charming.
Every guy is equally beautiful so I pick the one who seems to be the least cruel and dumb. The one I picked came with a competitor, so the rest of the story is watching them save my ass and squabble with each other over who’s taking better care of me. It’s all very primal.
Every time something interesting happens, I have no power and watch myself choose the stupid thing. The only choices I get to make from here on out are subtle conversational cues about which guy’s side I’ll take in the conversation. The whole plot that I ended up with is, I dressed up as a boy and joined the army as some noble’s food taster, in order to save my kid brother from having to join the army as some noble’s food taster. I still haven’t figured out why I didn’t just let my kid brother join the army; isn’t it kind of disrespecting him to steal his place in war? He wasn’t even going to the front lines. It actually saved my ass more than it saved his, because it got me out of a hotbed of sexual harassment at the restaurant where I worked. And it left him in a precarious position to deal with at home.
I finally got frustrated with the damn thing and turned it off because:
Now I understand the Japanese have different sensibilities than us, and that’s fine. But this isn’t just a Japanese thing; many American romance novels are like this too. Am I the only girl who doesn’t want to be stalked by a beautiful rich asshole?
After googling screenshots, I’m kind of intrigued again. There seems to be death/reincarnation,
and a lot of throwing up that I’m missing out on.
Also I may not have been playing right. There is also a castle section? I’m not sure it’s worth it to go back.
Anyway, people LOVE this game. It’s very pretty. I’m alone in these feelings. It must be that I’m 100% more evolved than every other woman ever… it must be that. Everyone’s crazy but me. Right.
I have another app to try called “Burn Your Fat With Me.” This is a dating simulator combined with workout app. Apparently a beautiful anime tsundere boy heckles you for being fat and shames you into doing sit-ups. I’m really looking forward to it.
I don’t like romance novels. It’s the one genre I despise. I like a good romance, but not the formula Harlequin stuff. Boring. Easy.
I thought, well, if I’m so cocky, if love stories are so easy, then write one. So… I tried.
Enjoy the failure.
Daymond looked through the slats of his blinds at the neighbor across the street. She was walking around without a shirt again. Didn’t she think anyone could see her? He turned away. But even after he went to sleep, the image of her followed him into his dreams.
The doorbell rang. Ugh, it was early. He dragged himself from bed, bleary-eyed, pathetic, and answered the door in just his tattered pajama pants.
It was her.
He scooched his lower half behind the door to hide his shameful attire. He always took care in how he dressed, doubly so around her. The pants were an embarrassment.
“Good morning,” he said.
“Good morning, and merry Christmas!” she said, her bright morning energy entering his brain through his eyeballs and burning a channel straight to the back of his skull.
She handed him a bag of cookies tied off with a bow. Cute. Distressingly colorful. Dear God what time was it. He stared at the bag and tried to remember what the etiquette was, was it even Christmas? What planet was this again?
“Ah, I’m sorry,” she said, her face falling. “Did I wake you up?”
“Huh? Oh, y…yes… no. It’s fine, I was just getting up anyway.”
“I’ll let you get dressed then. Sorry!”
She gave him another blinding smile and trotted back to her house.
She thought he’d answered the door nude? She had the gall to treat him like HE was the nudist? He would burn those pants as soon as possible. They were ten times more mortifying than he’d originally thought.
He shut the door and put the cookies on the kitchen table. Cinnamon and ginger fragrance eked through the cellophane. They were so cute.
He reran the conversation in his mind… he’d forgotten to thank her. How rude he’d been!
He cleaned himself up properly, took his time. Showered, shaved, brushed, put on one of his nicer shirts. She wouldn’t think him a scruffy nudist after this.
Knocking on her door was scarier than he’d expected.
“Just a minute!” She called through the door.
When she did answer, she was dripping wet, in a towel. Just out of the shower. She smelled like coconut and jasmine. The towel was only barely big enough to cover her generous assets.
“I, uh… sorry, was this a bad time?”
“Not at all!” She replied. She looked genuinely happy to see him.
Her breasts were smashed into perfect cleavage under the weight of her arm. Her legs were so long, so long, and they ran all the way up to the edge of the towel… oh dear God. He was getting a little too happy to see her, as well. Why was she always parading like this? Wasn’t she cold? Didn’t she realize what she was doing??
“Thank you. For the cookies! I realized I’d forgotten to say thank you.”
Don’t look down, don’t draw attention to it, hold her gaze. He had to get out of here quick before she noticed. At least his pants were the loose kind. But what was that draft?
She noticed. Her jaw dropped.
The draft… he looked down. He’d neglected to zip his fly. All that care in dressing and he’d left his zipper open. Or maybe it’d come down as he walked?
But that wasn’t the worst of it. Mr. Happy had poked his head out and wanted to thank her, too.
His face bright red, he hastily tucked it all back in and down and zipped everything into place. But the damage had been done.
“That was an accident, I swear! I didn’t know…” what? That his fly was open? That she’d answer the door in full sex kitten mode?
He choked on his words. Never again could he talk to her. He couldn’t even look her in the eye. He was going to be her #MeToo story forever.
In shame he fled her front porch and hurried back to his house.
“Wait!” She called.
To his horror, she ran out of the door after him in her towel. Everything bounced.
“Wait!” She caught up to him in the middle of the street. “It’s not a big deal, really.”
She got off on it. The sexual power. What else could explain her behavior?
He still couldn’t look at her.
“Did you try the cookies?” She asked. Was she actually trying to start a new conversation?
“Um, not yet… they smelled good. Listen, you’re not dressed, don’t you want to go inside?”
She looked confused. “Oh, I have a towel on, it’s fine. I just didn’t want you to leave like that.”
“You don’t think I’m some kind of pervert?”
She beamed another one of her smiles at him. “I haven’t decided yet.”
“Oookay. I’m going home now. Nice knowing you.”
“What FOR?” That came out harsher than he’d intended, but this was torture.
“Come back into my house. Try a cookie.”
“Wait… you are the pervert here? You’ve been trying to seduce me all along!”
“There are cookies at my house…”
She grabbed him by his shirt front and led him back into her house. He was never heard from again.
Well, I don’t know much but I know that’s not love. A distinct lack of sweetness, haha. Awkward boners tend to overwhelm a romance. Well, I’ll just have to keep trying until I get one right. Let that be a lesson to me.
I still don’t like dime romance novels though.
You are my comfort.
You wrap me in your warm embrace.
Softly console me when I cry.
You know me inside and out.
The only one I can rely on.
Any time, day or night
You are there
Always willing to spark a little joy
Into my waning mindset.
You are so tender
But sometimes you have a little bite.
Rough around the edges
You are bitter enough to match me
You are sweet enough to sweeten me
I can feel my brain chemistry change in your presence
When you are gone your memory lingers.
Why is it that nothing good can last?
My greatest love
My finest friend
My hopeless addiction
O chocolate brownie