Thursday's Child, Part Eight
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Don't worry, Nia will call Hector out on being rude to Richard..Collapse )

Thursday's Child, Part Seven
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In which Hector strikes a compromise between comfort and privacy, weighs up purely hypothetical scenarios, makes a realistic decision and decides he'll be in his bunk.

Even evil people like Hector have standardsCollapse )

I don't think I'll be reversing this decision- Not-Love Interests and bantering friends (even if there are some cheeky flirty moments) are more interesting to write than 'Unresolved Sexual Tension'. Hector doesn't have any traits that are on Nia's fanciable list (his main colour is brown, any bishie-ness of his is covered by a beard and she hasn't seen him be physically sadistic) and the 'take me' thought was when she was out of it. I don't think she even recognised who it was, except it was a man who didn't have cold hands. The idea of a doctor-patient sexual relationship for anyone as troubled as Nia is squicky and could not possibly end well: one of them would be manipulated by the other. Thankfully, Hector has principles, despite being a smart-arse jerk, and is a telepath despite feeling protective and affectionate towards Nia: he would notice any attempts ahead of time and dodge them.
He's also already dead, but he can be hurt when he's wearing the ankle brace that makes him tangible. He only wears it if he thinks it will be beneficial- such as being able to touch someone- as this device enforces a process that takes up a lot of energy and makes him severely hungry, so this is why he eats like a regular person when or after wearing it. Ghosts don't need to eat normally, but it can also become a comfort habit. Some strong-willed ghosts fast in order to make hunger pangs disappear permanently. Hector is more of a jerk and unreliable narrator at this point in time when it comes to male characters, but he's very slowly starting to improve near the end of this story and this will increase in other chapters.
One day he's probably going to shave off that beard and Nia will feel angry without knowing why. She still wouldn't fall for him, but it's probably a 'Who is that...Augh! That's Hector! Why would he do that? He's supposed to have a beard! Argh! He tricked me...somehow!' moment.

Thursday's Child, Part Six: Pomegranates are Sweeter than Olives
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There's a tiny reference to averted self-harm and a mention of self-esteem problems. Apart from that, this is fluff. I really should give the Boggans in Hector's house names. I think they were a good honest family that fell on rough times, but have seen it all. Who could make better staff for a long-dead psychiatrist's townhouse?
This entry's all cuteness as Hector tries to work out a nourishing dinner that Nia can eat easily..Collapse )

Don't 'toughen up', just don't give up
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Learning to take responsibility for your actions and reactions where you can is good advice. So is thinking about things rationally to assess if something nasty someone else does deserves your time and emotion spent on it- remember how well-meaning sensible friends in fiction will often pull their angry/upset friend away saying 'She/he/it isn't worth it"? The true friend is not saying the offence isn't wrong or you have no right to be upset, the friend cares enough about you to stop you from doing something you could regret while upset because they care about you and know you're a good person.
Toughen up? No.
Toughen up is said by people who don't want to acknowledge something is wrong, let alone do something about it (often said by people who have the responsibility to do something about it) or by people who have chosen not to have compassion for others or you specifically. After all, bullies often pull a 'wounded gazelle gambit' and make themselves a victim, ply authorities with sob-stories that aren't true (and if they are, they certainly don't entitle them to willingly and knowingly take it out on others who can't hurt them back), or pretend they're lovely people and you're an over-sensitive psychopath for daring not to like their 'funny jokes'. Sometimes they do all of these things and more.
I don't care who says this to you, even if they are a parent or teacher. If you are not actively bullying people and making their lives hard, you do not deserve to have your life made a misery. If you are being ostracised or tormented in a situation you have no way of walking away from, you do not need to toughen up. You are entitled to feel sad or angry, as much as you need to. Choosing to stay sad or angry is another matter, but do not think you don't deserve to have emotions or you have no right to ask for help you need or that because someone you thought you could trust says 'toughen up', you don't deserve help and never will. Please don't believe it. It's a lie.
If adults feel entitled to scream and whine in a coffee shop about a drink they *gasp* actually had to wait for without being told to toughen up- a situation in which they do need a reality check- then you deserve better than to be told to toughen up when you ask for help so you can have a safe home or school environment. Have no qualms in telling the next person the name of the one who refused you help and the insults they plied you with instead. It's not out of spite, you are informing someone that you have tried to get help and were unfairly- and nastily- refused it. No one deserves to be anyone's punching bag. No one should be made a scapegoat or dismissed with 'toughen up'. Do not believe these false things. 'Toughen up' is toxic non-advice for this situation. You have the same right to be happy as anyone else in your family or school. Please do your best in everything you can and don't give up. I know I can't guarantee anything will work out, but don't give up on having a happy life where it's possible for you. Don't give up on having compassion for others to the point you'll tell them to 'toughen up' when they have serious problems. Don't give up on yourself. You are worth fighting for.

Thursday's Child, Part Five: Settling In, Despite a Lack of Piggy-Back Rides
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This is much lighter in tone as Hector decides to personally see to Nia's welfare after his thought-snooping finds out what her lodgings are like. For once, he's using his power for purely good. He may be a bit of a lech and does fancy Nia a little, but he feels Nia needs someone in her corner far more than she needs a 'flirty-bantering-friends-with-benefits' situation and not just on this occasion. Yes, he is her doctor and psychiatrist, and has considered the above relationship as he has with other women- in many ways, he is a terrible doctor. For Nia personally, he's still the only psychiatrist that does her far more good than harm. For the whole story he's going to remain just her psychiatrist with occasional flirting and banter that will be met with repartee, laughter and rare punches.
WarningsCollapse )
With that ship reassuringly sunk...Collapse )

Notes: Some of Hector's decisions were written based on the advice listed in Mistress160's BDSM for Beginners aftercare posts. I'm particularly looking at the self aftercare post as Hector and Nia are not in a BDSM relationship, so the sweet romantic parts can't apply. As much as doctor-patient relationships are unequal by nature, Hector wants to be able to work with Nia, not on her, and wants to be able to have fun with her and help her in her freelance ventures- there's less dominance on his part, and she is allowed to disagree with him, call him out and sass him. She's also physically capable of hurting him very badly, but Hector can realise ahead of time if she's that upset and defuse the situation or detach the tangibility device. Nia hasn't got an aftercare kit or a note telling Hector what she needs and prefers, so Hector has to guess and venture very carefully. Her thoughts can help, but they're very incomplete or sometimes not about the situation at hand- an empath would be valuable here, but Hector can't get Britannia or Violette now. He's made a start by providing a safe warm location and hydration.
Aftercare for Submissives Read this one first as general principles and ideas are established here.
Aftercare for Switches
Aftercare for Dominants
Self Aftercare
While Nia exhausting herself was not BDSM and not remotely sexual, Hector is now in a position to give something like third-party aftercare: Nia is still very out of it and thought about hurting herself earlier. She's also been neglecting her needs- not actually her fault- so Hector is determined to cover them and have her feel safe. He wouldn't have wanted to leave her alone if he had taken her to her room and when he learned just how bad it was for her emotionally, he decided to intervene by taking her to his comforting home. Even if it looks scandalous, he is still her doctor and can truthfully say he needed to assess her overnight.

Thursday's Child, Part Four: Repairing Visceral Systems and Comforting a Nervous One
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Warnings for this particular chapterCollapse )
Scientific demonstration or theatrical one-man show?Collapse )
One last gadfly momentCollapse )

Quiet Room- Age Appropriate?
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Doctor Hector Quentin, ghost, telepath and psychiatrist, insists on building a quiet room for everyone in the busy department he works with, even though Hector's lack of explanation, the construction and the expenses (that Hector covers readily), exasperate and confuse 'Richard', the boss of the department. Hector, in many ways, is a terrible psychiatrist (rude to 'Richard' even when courtesy would work better, affectionate and slightly overprotective of 'Nia', gets very stubborn about getting to the heart of matters, flirts with any woman who is single and happy to receive it, swears when he gets bothered) but honestly? In the time period, 1890-91, he's far better for the staff than 'acceptable' psychiatrists and medical doctors. That is probably more of a comment on how terrible things were than Hector's talent, but being far better than conventional medical practice is a respectable start.
'Family' dynamicsCollapse )
Hector's addition to the dynamics: not always helpful but starting to improveCollapse )
Hector's original reason for making the room was because Nia didn't have a safe place to sleep, nor a safe place to put her treasured possessions- handmade cloth dolls of people she cares about- and while she couldn't live in the office, this gave her a place to relax for a short time each day until she could find safer housing. After this was achieved, Hector wanted to keep the room when he saw that, oddly enough, the other staff members might actually need some quiet and privacy too despite not having similar 'emergencies'. They often have to work irregular hours and a ten-minute nap could work wonders when their stomachs really don't want more coffee. I'm concerned about infantilising the environment by mistake.

  • The idea is that there is an identical couch to the one Hector has in his practice in this quiet room, but this one has more cushions and a furry rug over it, ideal for a nap.

  • There's a choice of blankets in a chest of drawers nearby: red may be over-stimulating, but Nia seems to need the warmth of it and the others are various calming colours- namely navy or neutral tones as the other staff members are male, and Rosalie would rather sit and read with the furry rug than nap.

  • Nia's dolls are kept in a lock-box only she has a key to, to protect her privacy. She may move them to her safer home later, but currently likes their comfort during the working day. To be fair, no one else in the office would have the heart to laugh at them, though at least Richard would find it perplexing because of Nia being an adult.

  • There may be a different soft toy hidden somewhere in the quiet room, but the chaps may feel weird about seeing something 'for children' there.

  • I'm not entirely sure which books will be in the bookcase: penny dreadfuls can be the nonsense someone needs but the crimes and deaths in the stories may be too close to home, poetry, preferably not war poetry, may be a better alternative, Shakespeare would be embraced eagerly by Nia and Duffy (wanting to learn what his sister likes) but may not be the most 'gentle' if it's not solely the comedies.

  • Preferably no newspapers: someone's allowed to bring the paper in with them, but not leave it there.

  • Food and drink are allowed, but no tobacco or non-prescribed alcohol or drugs. If someone is under the dose of painkillers or a hot toddy, they can rest in the room.

  • There is a desk, with paper, pencils and an abacus, in case someone simply wanted a quiet place to do the accounting. There are also coloured pencils for drawing.

  • There are jigsaw puzzles.

A precautionary criterion, sadly necessaryCollapse )

Thursday's Child, Part Three
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( You are about to view content that may only be appropriate for adults. )

Thursday's Child, Part Two
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This follows off directly from Part One, in which the current worry is resolved but that makes room for new ones. Here's a link to Part One:
Warnings. Same as before, but I don't want anyone who had forgotten getting hurt by nasty shocks.Collapse )

Veiled fears, unusual-but-apt extra-curricular employment, gadfly superiors...Collapse )

And the world is saved, thanks to...The Elder Gods?
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Cthulhu Saves the World

Wait, he does? Don’t worry, citizens of Innsmouth, there’s devious motives afoot.
The key word for describing this game is silly...Collapse )When it comes to the end of the world, you might as well laugh.
Four skulls.


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