The power of Nostalgia

I’ve been having a very nostalgic day.

A nostalgic day that saw me sitting and watching through all 300 of the tower challenges in Mortal Kombat 9. Yeah…

Pretty lame in some people’s eyes, but it brings me a lot of great memories.

You see, one of my best friends has gotten back into fighting games, particularly Marvel Vs Capcom 3, we played it so much together a few years ago. He’s gotten back into it and brought me a lot of great memories.

But it also got me thinking about the other games we were playing around the same time. One of those was indeed Mortal Kombat 9. We beat the story mode together (much frustration with the final boss. He took about half an hour for us to beat.), we beat a bunch of arcade modes together to see the cheesy endings.

And what most people spend a lot of their time on that game on… We beat the 300 challenge tower together.

The missions all vary on the character and objective. We’d pass the controller to whoever liked the character better, and on the missions where you got to choose, it was just sort of a back and forwards until someone finally did it.

It’s pretty weird to be so nostalgic for a game that isn’t even that old. It isn’t even that old and it barely holds up to the same graphical quality as Mortal Kombat X… But it still holds a special place in my heart.

All those great memories and so many more.

I just got very invested in that nostalgia today and well… That led me to a five hour video (that I’m still watching as I write this) of the challenge tower! I could have forgotten how frustrating the very last challenge was if I didn’t watch it take some pretty skilled players about 8 hours to beat it.

Damn Shao Kahn, man. He’s never easy but he’s a bit ridiculous in that game, haha.

Essentially the point is, nostalgia can make you do some pretty wacky things! It’s great to remember such good times when so many darker ones are going on right now. Remembering jokes, the game itself, just a lot of little things that completed the experience for us both.

I wonder if I’ll get so into this nostalgia that I’ll watch the story mode again, too…

But I digress.

As long as ‘nostalgia glasses’ don’t prevent you seeing any flaws in anything, I honestly feel like having such an old fondness of something can be the best thing to happen to you. So maybe a few years in the future you’ll stop and remember it, and maybe even go on a happy trip down memory lane as I have today.

A bit of a mellow entry today, but I just wanted to talk about how… Peaceful this nice little nostalgia trip has made me.

Are you very nostalgic for something that’s not really so ‘old’?

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Short Story: A Second Chance

What a terrible place to be in.

What an awful place this was.

A dark and dirty dungeon, full of prisoners wallowing in their own pities of why they were here in the first place. Some had done worse than others, that was for sure.

But in one cell…

The man shackled to the wall was silent. It was almost pitch black where he was, the torches on the wall avoided his cell as best as they really could.

The dark haired man with a jaw covered in facial hair stared to the dirty stone ground as he had been for the last month, still in shock at what he did to bring him here in the first place. He was no angel to begin with… He stole a lot, because he never had enough money to get by.

But for him to have killed such a young guard in his panic of being caught? To have taken a young man that was had just achieved something so important away from his family?

Unforgivable…

It was just another dull day in the dungeons. Easy to hear the whimpers and the wallowing of the others in the surrounding cells. But as always, this scarred man stayed silent. Telling himself how much he deserved to be rotting away in here.

Well, it just seemed like another day.

Immediate, loud questions were thrown around when one of the cells was loudly opened up, and on top of that, the man being held in there ran off like he’d been given his ticket to freedom.

“I’m undercover,” the man in the armour of the knights revealed as he stepped by each cell, roughly pulling on the lever to open it up. “It took me ages to get all the armour I needed to pass as one of them.”

“It’s not fair that you’re all in here,” he went on. “Rotting away when the most some of you have ever done is steal. I know people way more deserving of sitting in this dirty old place all day!”

He watched pretty proudly as the prisoners all scampered off together, it was a wonder if any of them had really listened to him. He didn’t really mind, though. The next part of his scheme was to draw the kingdom’s attention to those he knew should have been in here.

But walking by one of the cells, even though it was open…

That dark haired man still sat there, arms now free, but miserably placed on his legs as he continued to stare down at the stone ground below him.

“I’m not leaving.” he muttered, knowing that the ‘knight’ ahead of his cell was staring his way unsurely. “No one could deserve to be here more than I do.”

“Wh-what’s that supposed to mean?” he snapped back, though still sounding unsure. “I am going to get murderers and terrible people locked up in this miserable place!”

“I am a murderer.”

The young man’s eyes widened, he never really knew what he could respond to that. If this man was such a terrible murderer, why was he upset about it?

“…If you were, then you wouldn’t regret it. It’s apparent you do.”

“I still killed him.” the dark haired prisoner growled lowly. “A young man in that very same armour. I shot him in the head with a crossbow. I killed a young guard out of my own foolish fears.”

It seemed impossible to get through to this guy. Surely there was another way he could repent for his crime… He wasn’t like the others, he clearly regretted it more than anything.

“…Wouldn’t you feel better getting out of here and letting the real criminals get locked away in here?”

“For the last time… I am one. Leave. Now.”

The young man sighed, seeing that this was getting him nowhere. He was a little sad honestly, all the others dashed off without a question. Perhaps they all deemed themselves undeserving, unlike this guy.

But it was clear any amount of convincing wasn’t going to get him to budge.

The young man dragged his feet off through the dungeon once more. He planned all this out, he knew that if the other guards heard the commotion he’d claim there was a malfunction and the prisoners overpowered him.

He made his way to the light room that had a staircase spiralling up above the dungeons. The next order of business was to expose the criminals he knew so well to his higher ups…

But the moment he stepped into the room, he was roughly dragged around the corner, his arm twisted uncomfortably behind his back.

“I don’t know what kinda joke you’re playin’, guard… But you’ll make great bait so the others don’t kill us just yet!”

“H-hey! I’m here to help you!” he insisted loudly. He tried as he could to worm his way free, but his arm was trapped in a rough hold and the other prisoners promptly surrounded him.

“Maybe we should kill him now!” one of them called out eagerly. “One of us can act like a guard that is just doing something with the lot of us…”

“I-I’d do that…!”

“Don’t lie to us!” the large man that grappled his arm growled lowly, even tugging it harshly and ignoring the yelp that followed.

But then…

Some of the prisoners started dropping to the ground quickly, it was hard to see what was happening in the big crowd. Before long, the large man with the dark hair and beard had smashed his way through each and every one of them, to finally reach the last and smack him in the face, knocking him down and freeing the knight from his grapple.

“…Thanks.” he thanked somewhat sheepishly, flicking his arm around to try and get some feeling back in it again.

“You didn’t really think all these people don’t deserve to be here… Did you?”

It was a little embarassing to admit after such a bad encounter, but the young man nodded his head. “I thought I knew all the criminals. They’re an underground syndicate I used to be with.” he explained promptly. “But… I sure did learn that I was right! You don’t deserve to be here at all!”

The man’s eyes got wide at the remark. He looked around at all the others laid out at his feet, wearing the same brown rags that he had…

Maybe he wasn’t so much like them after all.

“…I’ll tell you what.” he started. “I’ll come with you. We’ll expose that syndicate of yours… Then perhaps we can lead somewhat normal lives after all. But you know, you could get in big trouble for this.”

“When you’re with those guys, you’re used to trouble.” the knight grinned, something cheeky and sure about his tone. At least a bit of help was extremely welcome in all of this.

“Come on!” he insisted. “…B-but first, let’s put all these guys back.”

Distractions, distractions… And mental health too

Gosh, I really need to be a little more active here.

I am falling apart and even after each time I come on here and try to preach about being positive and having rad friends that will always let you vent to them, and whatever the hell else I ramble on about.

I just…

My life isn’t starting.

I’m not earning anything by myself, I’m trying my hardest to do anything at all and no one seems to be listening. No employer gives me the time of day, so I’m stuck without any money probably for a while…

I have been through some nasty suicidal phases of my life. I’m sure almost everyone has in this day and age. There is so much wrong with the world we live in, it’s easy to get lost in the darkness and see no other way out.

I always try to stay positive, to tell other people to do the same…

But all year I’ve been trying to get a job. When I reach out for help and offer what I can in return, it’s a miracle if anyone at all responds to it.

I guess this is some of that venting I was talking about before, haha. What I’m trying to get at, rambling aside, is that I have gotten into another very dark period of my life. I just don’t see things improving.

I feel patronised when I try to let my frustrations out, I always get the same “you have no experience” or something like that. It’s just even more frustrating because… What do you think I’m trying to get?? Do you think I’m throwing myself in the deep end trying to get a really good job right off the bat??

Everything I want to do with my life is such a hard field to get myself into. Everything I’m trying seems pretty hopeless right now.

And really, it feels like no one would be missing much if I was gone. I won’t do anything stupid, but god I want to. I’ve wanted to for years.

A little information on my book

So I’ve been neglecting really talking about it properly. I just depend on people to actually go and look at it rather than explain anything myself, so here goes:

So… What’s it about?

Two Sides is a fantasy story, that follows the events of a war between two kingdoms. Ilpha and Ophida were supposed to be intertwined with various business and partnership deals, but tensions rise when the king of Ophida, Neomas, seems displeased that a very young queen is put into power.

It’s made worse when the young queen Rosetta is convinced that her sister fallen into a coma, Phelia, has been desperately pleading for Ilpha to strive further and claim more land. Unsure what it really means, Rosetta acts hasty and delcares war on Neomas and his kingdom of Ophida.

The story is about the journeys that the characters go on, their own personal and moral struggles. It studies the minds of different personalities, and what makes them keep going even if they don’t entirely want to.

It’s a story about growth between a lot of the characters…

Of course the universe and world are very important too, but the most important thing is the struggles that the characters endure together, and where it takes them from the start to the finish.

It can be found on various sites now, as I’ll list here:

Amazon – www.amazon.co.uk/Two-Sides-Rhi…

Createspace – www.createspace.com/7276274

And Smashwords, where you can list the price yourself (ebook) – https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/737829

It would mean a lot to me if you even took the time to look. Thank you for your time and I have many more books on the way!

Venting: What does it do?

I realised how powerful it really is to vent out your feelings, that little something that’s been bothering you for weeks. You can think about it for days on end by yourself, but the moment you actually talk to someone about it, it feels like weight off your shoulders.

I’m having some troubles remembering some pretty bad times in my life, and I spent many weeks laying awake in bed.

Thinking of what I could have done differently…

Thinking of all my wrongs in the situation.

And most of all stuck in a loop of hypocrisy. Why is it weird that I did the exact same thing that they did to me? Why does me doing it make it weird?

I sat down and after a few hours of goofing of as usual, one of my best friends just listened and let me vent it out. It really did help, I’ve barely thought about it since.

It’s just kind of funny how you can spend so long thinking about something by yourself, when sometimes all you really need is for somebody to listen and understand what you’re going through.

Having someone to talk to is so important. Having people that understand you and want to help you… Is so important.

I certainly don’t have that many friends, but the few I do have are so loving and supportive. Even when my head makes me try to feel like I’m on my own, it’s nice that any of them will hear me out and help me.

And of course, there are other ways to vent, too! Any way to get stress of your chest, I have found pretty valuable along the line.

This includes writing. Whether you want to portray all your frustration in a more creative project, or just writing down all your thoughts and feelings. Don’t stop and think, just write it all down and get it out of your head.

It feels like you’re getting it out somewhere, and can empty all those words on the page out of your head, so at least you’re not stuck with them for a little bit.

Then the other way I find helpful, but it’s just because it’s something I do so often, is drawing what we call ‘vent art’. Art that pours all your negativity into it at that moment, often being a little darker than whatever the person would normally think of.

Again, it’s another way to take those dark emotions and hopefully get them out of your head when the thing is finished.

Well really, the point I’m trying to make is that venting is important. No matter how you do it, it’s very important to get more negative and unpleasant thoughts out of your head and poured into something else.

Venting can really save you some stress! I forget it a lot myself, so I guess writing about it is pretty nice to do, especially after last night.

Writing Prompt Exercise 8

She had followed the woman for days and at last her patience was paying off.

This woman seemed to sneak off the same route every single day, it was finally time to make sense of exactly what she was doing.

She usually ended up in the same alleyway, just waiting for such a long time, and then she would leave. It was clear that something was off here.

While certainly no detective herself, a young girl with bright green hair had made it her mission to follow this strange woman and see exactly what she was up to. She currently wore a black jacket, and some normal jeans.

She crept along cautiously after the woman once again, taking the long route through the streets…

The woman had wavy black hair, but it looked kind of greasy. Her clothes a little torn too, protected by a big coat on top of it all.

They reached the alley that they always ended up in.

The young girl with green hair pressed herself onto the wall , to listen in. To peer around and see if anything at all was happening here… This was going to be the last day that she checked, after all.

It wasn’t too long a wait until this time, something finally happened.

Another set of footsteps crept in from the other side of the alleyway.

“Oh, there you are!” the woman called out, hope in her voice. “I’ve been coming here all week… I was so worried.”

“Sorry,” the voice of a young man spoke up. “I could barely get out of the house without anyone really noticing.”

The young girl was curious as to what was going on now. So this had been going on all week, not just these last few days?

She peeked around her hiding space behind the clean wall, to spot that the young man looked very well dressed. A clean black waist coat and a very nice white undershirt to match it, clean and slick black paints…

His blonde hair was brushed very neatly back to stay out of his face as much as possible. She remained peering from her corner, to see that the young man had reached into his pocket for a wallet, and dug a sum of money out of it and passed it to the woman.

“I’ll have enough to get you somewhere nice to live when I take over my father’s business…” he told her with a small smile, watching her sheepishly take the money from his hand and stuff it into her pocket.

The dark haired woman felt tears in her eyes, she felt her voice refusing to speak from how… Sweet this man was.

“I don’t know why you waste your time with me…” she mumbled softly. “But it means the world to me, after what happened.”

“You lost everything…” he responded with a frown. “And I’m supposed to stay at home and act like I don’t know that? If I can help you, then I will.” he insisted, he seemed very keen to help at all. “Now, this should get you by for another week, anyway. Would you like to go eat somewhere with me?”

“Not so fast!”

Another new voice!

This was getting crazy, the green haired teenager thought to herself. Just what craziness was really going on here?

It was then that she peered around to see another man, with dark and clean brown hair that had entered the alleyway. He looked about as well dressed as the blonde man, but his suit was a little red rather than fully black.

“You thought I never spotted you sneaking out, hmm?” the man asked, almost tauntingly. “So you want to waste your father’s hard earned business on this… This bloody tramp?”

“Shut your mouth!” the blonde man growled back. “Everyone in our family is just selfish! Can’t you look around and see people that need our help? Can’t you imagine what it’s like?”

“Oh, who made you so soft in the head?” the brunette complained. “Take your money back and come. We’re going home now.”

“You’ll have to drag me!”

That sudden challenge saw the young blonde man take the woman’s arm and rush off with her, right at where the little spy they weren’t even aware of was standing! She backed off to try and make it look like she was just passing by casually, the two of them never even noticed her when they darted out onto the streets.

Now she knew what was happening…

She had to try and help, even a little bit.

She wandered out at the right time for the older man to run right into her, again using this facade that she was just passing by here unnoticed.

“Watch where you’re going, stupid girl!” the man growled lowly.

“S-sorry…” she muttered, only glancing up she’d see a rather well groomed moustache on his upper lip, as well as a pretty nice beard covering most of his jaw.

After one last glare, he rushed off away from her to try catch the pair that had run off from him. Hopefully it was enough time for them to get away, she thought to herself.

She felt bad.

She expected it was going to be something shady, something bad.

But it was a young man trying to help a young woman that had lost everything…

Finally putting the pieces together, there was no doubt that girl was one of the only people that survived a nasty fire very recently. She lost her home, her family, her everything.

If she ever saw those two again…

Maybe she could help a little more directly.

 

 

Finally finished this freaking prompt! It was giving me a lot of trouble, I had no idea what to do for it…

I got around it eventually, though. I want to use these prompts that way, like I felt like it would have been cheating if I just generated them time and time again until I got one that immediately got me going.

The challenge of the prompt is to work with what you’ve got, I don’t like bending the ‘rules’, and I guess it gets the creative juices flowing to just go with it, even if I did struggle a bit to start with.

Yeah… A bit of a ramble but, after yesterday, it was great to do this at last.

Thinking: Depression

I’ve struggled with mental health for about as long as I can remember.

It’s hard to get out of bed sometimes. It’s hard to keep going, even with the most supportive people at your side, your head can make you feel alone and vulnerable.

I’ve been trying to make something of myself for my whole life, I just often catch myself wondering when that will pay off. When will someone give me that huge helping hand that I’ve tried to give to other people?

Of course, I’m not perfect, by any means. I’ve made some bad mistakes.

But everyone has.

Even the nicest people can hurt someone when they’ve reached their limits.

I guess I just wanted to vent a few thoughts out, because this is a problem that’s been close to my heart for so many years. As soon as I think things are improving, I just seem to fall even deeper than I ever was before.

I know it will get better.

I even know that I have great friends and family to support me…

Just in the worst of times, it truly can feel like you’re alone. I hope I can keep having fun and enjoying myself, I’ve been feeling a little bit better over the last few days.

Great coping methods are heavily revolved around my good friends, just goofing around with me for a few hours and making me smile for a bit.

I just really wonder when I my life will lift up…

I can’t get work, no one will give me the time of day.

Sorry for being a bit depressive, I just don’t really have the juices to write at the moment and this is getting something out there at least.

Smashwords: Probably the best ebook publisher?

So last night, I made another attempt to try and publish my book, Two sides. I’ve tried Createspace, nothing. That got it onto Amazon too but I just couldn’t seem to get anyone interested.

I tried Smashwords because it had been recommended to me before. And god I’m happy I did! It was worth spending a good day formatting the story into the publishing format of the site.

While it’s nothing crazy right now, a few people picked it up for free while I had it listed as such, and about 6 people (or, so the graph said) picked up the free sample of the first 20% of the book!

A few offers for features, too…

And a very lovely and positive review on the first night of release.

I was starting to lose hope in this dream, but I don’t think I should just yet. There’s a book series I have that I don’t want to release until I know people will actually support it. I guess it’s me being too precious about it, but it’s a story that got me through the hardest times of my life, the characters got me through those terrible times.

But now, there might be light at the end of this tunnel yet.

I really hope this is a sign of great things to come. I really hope I get to live my life doing what I love; Writing!

If you even want to look on Smashwords, which honestly means a lot to me, here’s a link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/737829

Short Story: At Peace

It had been a few months since the world had been mended from Hell’s attack.

A few months since Ayumu and the rest of his family from Hell had settled into their new home on Earth. It was very welcoming and warm compared to their own home, certainly. But so much to get used to.

No one was more clueless about technology than a Reaper. Both Ayumu and his father Eiji always found themselves baffled at how to send a text, how to navigate a website… It was a lot for them to get used to.

The month was October.

While the trees and leaves had gained orange colours instead of their healthy greener ones, they still looked some kind of amazing. Particularly under the soft glow of the evening, the moon was up but the skies were very clear.

It was quite bright for a night, stars covered the whole sky and the moon hung up there brightly, too.

Just wanting to take in the more relaxing and natural state of the Earth, Ayumu found himself wandering up a big hill of soft orange grass swishing around at his feet. Even if he didn’t really need to anymore, he found himself wearing his Reaper attire.

His big black cloak, and the big black boots that matched them. He was still as pale as ever, and true to having opened himself up so much, his black her wash swept back over his head to keep it out of his eyes.

He stared down at the grass at his feet until he reached the peak of the hill, and peered out into the world around him now. There was a big healthy tree at his side, the leaves all orange and yellow, warm colours.

And below his hill was a huge forest of more trees, but darkened in the light on the evening. From here, he could see the stars and the moon wonderfully. The sort of blend the sky’s colours had taken looked breathtaking.

He couldn’t help but smile to himself.

This was the first time he’d really gone off on his own to admire the Earth back in a healthier state.

And it was another time he got to think about his dearest friend Imanam…

She would have loved this. This sight, the gentle atmosphere around this place. Even if she hadn’t made it here…

Knowing this was here again made all those struggles worth it, Ayumu thought to himself.

This was his home now.

It was wonderful.

He never felt ungrateful for what he had in Hell, but the Earth had a very mystifying beauty to it that he never could have imagined before he saw it. This was the realm he would be ready to put his life on the line for again.

There was so much to see, and so much to help the humans rebuild themselves with… But stopping to take in this wonderful view was a great reminder that all their struggles were, and would continue to be worth something amazing.

His long, pointed ears twitched a little at the sound of feet stepping through the grass behind him, he turned himself to look at who it was.

Vel had found where he’d snuck off to.

“Hey,” the zombie boy greeted with a casual wave of his arm as he wandered closer. It was easy to see how blue his skin was in this light, and just how many cracks ran across his skin.

He’d opted to wear something much more casual than his little brother Ayumu, wearing a short sleeved, navy blue shirt and a pair of jeans. Sneakers on his feet. The zombie’s hair was the same as ever though, brown and pretty neatly styled across his head, getting in his face a bit.

He found himself looking up to the mixtures of purple and blue in the skies above them. “Might have known you’d come look somewhere like this. It’s real nice, though.” Vel commented. He looked to his side, his friendly green eyes locked onto Ayumu. “Hope you’re not feeling sad, out here.”

“Far from it.” Ayumu answered with a little smile. “If anything, this place is making me very happy. Just…” he glanced around again, a second time of taking in his wonderful surroundings. “We brought this back to life. We made views like this… Possible again.”

“Well… Yeah.” Vel answered, folding his arms loosely with a little laugh. He couldn’t really remember anything of the sort from his human life, so perhaps it was a good chance to take it in now.

He glanced back to his side, though. “Well, hey. Don’t stay out here too long… Come home in a little. Someone needs to make dinner, and I am not letting Eiji anywhere near the damn kitchen.”

Ayumu giggled to himself at the words, but did nod his head to agree to it. “Yes, of course.” he nodded. Vel passed him one more smile before he started walking off the way that he’d come from.

Ayumu looked back, at the sea of trees beneath this grassy hill once more…

This was certainly time he could have been spending with his family, though.

He looked back in Vel’s direction…

And started jogging his way over. “Hey!” he called out. “Wait up! I’ve got a great idea for what to cook tonight!”

A little cheesy short story, I guess a separated epilogue from the real story of Whispers of War.

But that image!

I needed to do a little something based off that image, because gosh I love how it turned out.

Don’t forget to check out my deviantart if you like how it looks! > http://sephysnu.deviantart.com/

What makes a bad mood?

Do you ever feel good for a while, and then that good mood you just had slowly deteriorates… And then you just kinda feel crappy?

I’ve experienced that exact feeling for the last few days now, it happens to me a lot, but I guess I’d just like to write up my feelings to try and understand it more.

A lot of negativity can stem from loneliness, something people like me experience a lot, and while I’m waiting until I have to go get a job (I have a holiday to go on first!), I spend a lot of time by myself. In the house, not really doing much.

I’ve felt so uninspired with writing and drawing lately, two of the things I love to do the most.

A lot of it stems from being lonely, but there are other things that do contribute.

Like waiting for the one person that you enjoy talking to the most to answer you, and to be given such a half-hearted response from them. For them to seem so uninterested in something you just told them that meant a lot to you.

To be waiting to hear from someone… To end up waiting all day, unsure if they’re even going to bother to talk to you.

I don’t have many friends to begin with, so when I get left in these situations I just lose all the juice I’d like to use to actually use this blog how I want to, to follow along my hobby of drawing.

But when I get in the swing, both of those things are great escapes for these bad moods. Those as well as video games, of course. The more immersive the better. I really like RPGs because they’re long and can keep you busy for a long time.

That aside though, little things can really damage your mood. Especially if you’re not really that stable emotionally and mentally to begin with, which I can safely say for myself.

I guess you just need to try your best to look at the positive sides of things sometimes, even if it feels like there’s nothing but negatives around you, there’s something positive somewhere.

It’s okay to feel down and defeated, but you just have to make sure you get back up!

So I guess I’m going to have to slack off on writing prompts and short stories for another day…

I’ll get back on track with them soon.

But for now, I guess some more rambles about my thoughts and bad moods for the last few days. Hopefully I can find myself a good distraction now.