(Unfinished NYE post) It's time for a New Year's summation sequence! Let's see what - and who - 2021 had to bring...
Last year's New Year's summation was not so much a summation as a desperate and final plea for a chance at survival. And, well... I'm here to write this post today. So I'd say it was a success!
Let's take a closer look at how I've grown and what I've accomplished this year...
You feel well rested and energized -- it's time to fight!
That's right! I'm back in it! After last year, my health is nearly completely filled, and I'm even back on the job market!
It's been a long and difficult year. There's been a lot of suffering. But there's been a lot of joy and a lot of hope, too.
- Rose and I finished Shadowbringers and caught up to the present day for the first time in our respective Final Fantasy XIV careers. And when patches and Endwalker came out, we continued going through them together, hand in hand. This turned out to be fantastic both for being something we can do together and have fun with, but also for being something that gives me stories with elements of hope in the face of overwhelming despair - which I have never needed more than I need it now!
- I started an island in Animal Crossing, and I was having quite a fun time with it!
- Learning to deal with ADHD
- Confronting screens addiction
- Getting over shame
- Riding bike
- Surviving a bike accident
- Major server set-up
- Designing my own vore game
- Tracking down identity change stuff
But I didn't make it here alive by myself, of course... Let's look at all the people who played a part in this year - there's a fair few of them this year!
Companions That Surpassed Their Communities
There are six link types:
🛡️ The companion's trust level; the level of emotional safety and warmth and personal connection shared in the relationship. Nurse Reya's specialty.
💖 The companion's affection level; the level of open affection (platonic, romantic, or familial) shared in the relationship. Reya Heart's specialty.
🎊 The companion's joy level; the level of fun and excitement shared in the relationship. Child Reya's specialty.
🖌️ The companion's creativity level; the level of brainstorming and roleplaying or goofing off shared in the relationship. Child Reya's other specialty.
💭 The companion's planning level; the level of working together shared in the relationship. Sorceress Reya's specialty.
🤗 The companion's physical touch level; the level of physical affection shared in the relationship. Succubus Reya's specialty.
⭐ Indicates that the link type is at an exemplary level.
❓ Indicates that the link type has never been established (e.g., touch for someone who's not close enough).
🔒 Indicates that the link type is capped and currently unable to level up any further.
❌ Indicates that the link type has failed or is intentionally uninitialized.
✨ Indicates companions who only just joined the party this year.
🐱 Indicates members of the Cat Cafe, my circle of close friends.
🛠️ Indicates companions on the road of self-reinvention. Lady Reya's specialty.
💕 Indicates former romantic partners.
🇯🇵 Indicates language-learning companions.
👩💻 Indicates fellow IT nerds.
💼 Indicates project companions.
🎲 Indicates gaming companions.
⚔️ Indicates FFXIV companions.
✍️ Indicates writing companions.
👥 Indicates roleplay companions.
🔞 Indicates kink companions.
👄 Indicates vore companions.
🔍 Indicates size companions.
👠 Indicates feet companions.
🛡️🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦⭐ 💖🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦 🎊🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦⭐
🖌️🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦⭐ 💭🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
🐱🛠️ 💼🎲⚔️✍️👥 🔞👄🔍
Unflinching Best Friend Forever
Rose has been my best and closest friend for a few years now, and this year only made it even clearer why that's the case. To say she stuck with me through thick and thin would be a severe understatement. This year was perhaps the most brutal test of our friendship that we've ever had, and she never so much as blinked, let alone looked away. A hundred times this year, I sobbed myself sick about the thought that I was slowly losing all of my friends, that I would never recover from my trauma, that I had lost all my power and I would be jobless forever. And a hundred and twenty five times, Rose told me that she would be there for me to the end, held me (virtually) while I cried, and helped cheer me up as soon as I'd worn myself out. Even as she was busy with work and campaigns and all that other stuff, she didn't ever leave me out to dry. Not to say she abandoned her own life to take care of mine, that's unhealthy and I wouldn't stand for it - but because she was so consistent with keeping up with me, I could easily trust that she would be back whenever she was gone.
You know what that means for me? A person who has constant and intense fears of abandonment, of people turning their backs on her and drifting away without her even having the chance to say goodbye? It means a lot. Rose may not be the first stable relationship I've ever had (that title goes to Damien), but she is absolutely the most powerful example. Her trust and strength and patience and understanding have grown by a lot this year, and whether it be in goofing off coming up with funny (read: dumb) ideas to do together, egging each other on with our writing, being a sounding board for brainstorming, going through the Final Fantasy XIV story together and playing around with our characters, or just chatting, Rose is such an awesome companion that I can't imagine a life without her.
This year, Rose initiated, majority-planned, and hosted the very first Cafe meetup - and she's already starting to help us put together the second. And if you've known Rose as long as I have, you probably know that every word in that sentence would have seemed like anathema just a few years ago. But she's grown so much in that time that this is at once an amazing, wonderful sign of her progress and also completely natural and understandable. Of course Rose is ready to do that. Because she is the absolute best, and I adore her.
🛡️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💖🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦⭐ 💭🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
🐱🛠️💕 🎲 ✍️👥 🔞👄🔍
Passionate Laughing Muse
Charlotte and I dated for a few months at the start of this year. And although we ended up resuming a friendship, I still think it's important to remember that, because it shows just how strongly I feel about her. Most of the reason for why the relationship ended was simply the fact that she's got so much going on that we barely had much time together, and although that's not what I'm looking for in a partner, it makes her fantastic to be around. She's always full of jokes and laughter, and her skills as an inspiration are second to none. We started this year with a pair of RPG characters that work well together, and we're finishing this year with a pair of RPG characters that work well together. She's an absolute blessing and I'm so happy to have connected with her.
Calls with her are always full of laughter and giggling fits from both ends, and we've talked through difficult things and supported each other all the way. As with Rose, my friendship with Charlotte was also sorely tested this year, and as with Rose, Charlotte stood by me through all of it. She was comforting, encouraging, understanding, and above all patient with me as I went through it this year. We've played tons of Final Fantasy XIV together (even if she no longer plays), watched movies together (Venom, the Jurassic Park trilogy), and played lots and lots of board games together during board game nights.
The stuff I've watched Charlotte deal with this year is nothing trivial. On the contrary, she's been fighting a really intense battle of her own against her circumstances. And no matter what, every time she gets knocked to her knees and thrown off her game, she picks herself back up and keeps going. She's an inspiration in how to handle relationships, how to handle obstacles, and how to be a friend. I couldn't have asked for a better woman to be walking beside me.
🛡️🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦⭐ 💖🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🎊🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️
🖌️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💭🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦⭐ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
🛠️ ⚔️✍️👥 🔞👄🔍
Stalwart Guardian of the Soul
Ema was my protector and my refuge and my advisor more this year than any year before. And considering how much she's been those things in the past, that's really saying a lot. I mean really, really. She truly went above and beyond to handle this situation in a way that made me feel like she wasn't simply trying to fence-sit to get what's best for her, but to help me find what's best for me of the choices I'm presented with and help me get there. To soothe my wounds when I'm on my knees, near tears from the pain, and help me get back to my feet and find my path again. And along the way, we have fun with it. She makes jokes, slips in videos and game references, and just generally fills me up with positive energy in addition to providing me with a safe way to vent some of the negative energy. And when I need to make a decision, there's none better to talk it out with, as she always helps me to find a way forward that I'm comfortable with.
Ema is frankly on another level, and I've seen her climb further up the mountains she's faced with than ever before this year. The difference in the amount of hope she has, the difference in her confidence, the difference in her determination, they're all palpable. She's taught me so many things about myself, about people in general, about processing my emotions, about the ADHD we both struggle with. Knowing how amazing she is with her weighted training clothes on, I can't wait to see her flying and light on her feet as she casts them off one by one.
Although she's no longer a member of the Cat Cafe, she'll always be a member of my inner circle, and a treasure I'll adore to the end of time!
🛡️🟨🟨🟨➖➖🔒 💖🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💭🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 🤗➖➖❌➖➖
🐱🛠️ 👩💻 🎲⚔️✍️👥 🔞👄🔍
Unfurling Wings and Taking Flight
Judge not Lili by her relatively lower scores, because as one of my longest-time friends, she's only got those because she's busy kicking ass in the rest of her life. I know firsthand how much transition takes over your entire life, especially if you're reinventing other parts of yourself. And Lili is doing a full-system overhaul. Between making new connections of her own, hanging out with her partner Kait and moderating their streams and Discord chat, all the stresses of transition, work stuff, and also the other stuff that's going on in the real world, Lili is powerful to an unreal degree, and I'm glad to have her in my party.
We've been making time for each other with some Neverwinter Nights Eye of the Beholder, which has been grand! The two of us weakly dragging our massive treasure hoard down floor by floor, murdering everyone and keeping everything just in case it might be worth a few more GP... I'm looking forward to more of that once she's done visiting Kait!
🛡️🟨🟨🟨➖➖🔒 💖🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦 🎊🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️
🖌️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💭🟥▪️▪️▪️▪️ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
Eternally Soft Fluff
Damien is an at once strong and soft companion who has been by my side since the time of nightmares not worth mentioning - and has remained always within reach even as we went on to go our separate ways. We cheer each other on, send words of affection and joy to each other, and occasionally commiserate about things. And still to this day, every so often we find ourselves exchanging characters and laughing and having fun with each other. Damien will forever be a key part of my world, and I'm so happy that he's still within reach!
🛡️🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 💖🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️➖➖❓➖➖ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
✨🐱🛠️ 👩💻 ⚔️ 🔞👄
New Adventuring Companion
As she's still a very new member of the Cafe, I'm still feeling out the relationship with Juni - but all signs point to "very promising" so far. Already, she's shown me that she has the courage and the strength to work on herself, the fun personality, and a lot of the same interests - the necessary components of a cafe member! Despite the unusual way we encountered each other (through my writing and her vtubing colliding!), I'm already loving her company, and I hope I get to have more of it into the new year!
🛡️➖➖❌➖➖ 💖🟧🟧➖➖➖🔒 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💭➖➖❌➖➖ 🤗➖➖❌➖➖
🐱🛠️ 🇯🇵🧑💻 🎲⚔️✍️👥 🔞👄🔍
Building Back from Ash
To say that Kait and I had a good relationship this year would be openly lying to myself, to them, and to you, the reader. Our falling out was the schism that tested the strength of the cafe's bonds. I won't lie to you and tell you it didn't hurt, either.
But somehow - even after everything that transpired between us - they are back in my life. And although it's slow going here at the beginning of our New Game+, I remember that I really do truly adore them and enjoy their company. And even more so now, as they go on to do bigger and more exciting things, make new friends and introduce me to them. Our lives have each changed dramatically, to the point of being unrecognizable to ourselves - let alone each other. In the end, it was always going to be necessary for us to start a new friendship - as our authentic selves, strong and passionate.
I believe that while that friendship won't look like the one we had before, it will be all the better for being ours as we are, rather than as we once were.
🛡️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💖🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💭🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
✨ 🛠️ ⚔️✍️👥 🔞👄🔍👠
Outstretched Hand of Comfort
Pockette was someone I didn't even think I'd talk to much - around the middle of this year, I was feeling vulnerable and wary and unwilling to engage with people talking to me on my kink account, which was when they messaged me. But on a whim of mine, I finally responded, we got to talking, we discovered that we had some interests in common, we began to lower our respective guards... and now, half a year later, I can't imagine not having met them this year. They've been a strong support to me through some of my darkest times, and we've been having so much fun talking about character things and Final Fantasy XIV and everything else that at times I forget that we've only known each other for single-digit months.
They've been a constant ally and cheerleader, never being too far away even when life calls them away. The amount I feel comfortable trusting them now, after such a short time, is a true testament to how kind and genuine they are. And I'm having such a blast with writing with them that they're quickly becoming one of my top writing companions! I can't wait to spend more time with them and learn more about them in 2022!
🛡️🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 💖🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️🟦🟦🟦🟦🟦 💭🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
✨ 🛠️ 💼 ✍️👥 🔞👄
Fresh and Fiery Muse
Ssubby and I met because we were huge fans of each other's work, and in the relatively short time that we've known each other, she's quickly become a star companion in the field of writing and roleplay. Not only is she full of excellent ideas and characters - and good game suggestions - but she's provided a fresh perspective on a bunch of the vore stuff that I love, and she's endlessly encouraging. And she was responsible for the addition of two other companions that have also become quite friendly in the short time we've known each other. She's even been patient with some of the rougher revelations to come out of knowing me - not something I expect from kink friends, to be sure. And she made this lovely drawing of my character for Christmas! She really is omnitalented...
And because we work so well together already, we've started work on a game project together as well - a little specially-tailored gacha game for our corner of the vore sphere. And while we still have a ways to go, we're having a good time talking about it as it is. She's full of good ideas and skillful execution, and I'm looking forward to working more with her next year!
🛡️🟥▪️▪️▪️▪️ 💖🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💭🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
✨ 🛠️ 👩💻 ✍️👥 🔞👄
Passionate Fountain of Story
Hershey and I became friends through Ssubby, and like Ssubby, she's a fellow writer - one with quite a lot of skill! She's been telling me all about the things she has planned for her story this year, and I honestly can't wait to see what they look like in action - already, the stuff she's starting to churn (heh) out has been fascinating, and I can tell she's excited about it too - which is exactly what I love to see! We're only just starting to get to know each other, so I'll look forward to next year when we learn more about each other!
🛡️➖➖❓➖➖ 💖🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
✨ ⚔️✍️👥 🔞👄 👠
A Link Between Worlds
Rin and I became friends through Ssubby, and like Ssubby, Rin's got a lot of roleplay power packed up those rabbit sleeves - and though our schedules haven't aligned very much yet, I can't wait to see that power unleashed in its full form! We've also been talking a lot about Final Fantasy XIV together, and it's been nice to have someone who can get enthusiastic with me about the vore potential of the scenes after Rose and I are done high fiving about it! I can't wait for us to play together next year!
It's also been wonderful to finally meet someone who shares something like my interests in feet while also being interested in vore and story stuff - Rin is a rare breed of bunny, and I intend on running more experiments to see just how rare as the new year comes around!
🛡️➖➖❓➖➖ 💖🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️➖➖❓➖➖ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️
⚔️ 👥 🔞👄🔍
Towering Pillar of Enthusiasm
Malacoda and I had run-ins on multiple occasions on Twitter this year, and he's been encouraging and energetic and entertaining to a fault every time. I always walk away from our interactions with a spring in my step and a smile on my face. It's no mistake that I've ended up in the free company run by his partner with him in it - the chance of running into him in game and having a little chat makes playing all the more fun!
🛡️🟥▪️▪️▪️▪️ 💖🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 🎊🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️
🖌️🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
✨ 👥 🔞👄
Canonical Roleplay Companion
EmblemMan is a companion I'm just starting to get to know - he's a roleplay partner who seems to have some fun thoughts in mind! Though neither of us was able to make a decision at first (and I certainly made quite the impression on him, since much of my early contact with him has been sleep deprived ;D), our roleplay together has thus far been a sparkling success, and I can't wait to see what we get up to as we get to know each other!
🛡️➖➖❓➖➖ 💖🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🎊🟩🟩🟩🟩▪️
🖌️➖➖❓➖➖ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
Lexi and I started doing some hard quests together on FFXIV together this year, and I can't wait to get back to it - we're such an excellent team, and she's a lot of fun to play with! I've long admired her but rarely done much with her, so I'm really glad to have this chance to do stuff together!
🛡️🟥▪️▪️▪️▪️ 💖🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 🎊🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️
🖌️🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
Klin was responsible for a lot of the vore content that I adored as a young developing pervert, and to be able to swap ideas here in the present when I'm much more skilled is lovely! We've been talking about favorite elements and stories for quite some time now, and it's always been a pleasure and an inspiration to swap lewds hat carry some story inspiration with them!
🛡️➖➖❓➖➖ 💖🟨🟨🟨▪️▪️ 🎊➖➖❓➖➖
🖌️➖➖❓➖➖ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
✨ 🛠️ 🔞👄
After so long only knowing each other in passing in the roleplay sphere of Twitter, Kim's growth this year has been inspiring to watch. I'm so glad that I get to be around to see it! I'm really excited to see how she grows and changes as her transition continues, and I'm cheering her on all the way!
🛡️🟥▪️▪️▪️▪️ 💖🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 🎊🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️
🖌️➖➖❓➖➖ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
Fun Foxy By Proxy
Though we knew each other only briefly and distantly, the fact that Xime brought so much joy to Kait was reason enough to reach out to her, and it turns out that Kait had her all right - she's fantastic! Through our brief interactions on the tweets and in streams, hers is a name I won't soon forget. Perhaps as my world begins to change and grow in the coming year, I'll get to see her more! I'm grateful for the kind words and the fun times we shared this year!
🛡️➖➖❓➖➖ 💖🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️ 🎊🟧🟧▪️▪️▪️
🖌️➖➖❓➖➖ 💭➖➖❓➖➖ 🤗➖➖❓➖➖
Soft Friendly Cryptid
Through Kait, Fangy was my first introduction to the world of small English vtubers, and likely the one I spent the most time with this year. And I'm so grateful to have gotten to meet her - she is a ray of gentle, warming, playful sunshine in a world that needs all the sun it can get, and one who's willing to learn and grow at that! I'm so excited to see more of her work in the coming year!