On the other hand, one good thing that's come of tonight is another season of Doctor Who finishing downloading (this one in just under 24 hours, surprisingly enough), and continuing the trend of estimating what chance there is of everything being complete within just under a week now, I'd put it at about 65%. It would be 70 or even 80 if I could count on the download speed to remain constant, but like everything else, it has a tendency to fluctuate, making my estimations exponential (I think), as opposed to linear. But even now I have to remind myself that even if it reaches 100% before next Monday, looking forward to having George over here to give him the final update is the very thing that could cause him to forget his drive. The other problem lies with potential reimbursement. I still do fancy the idea of asking for some small reimbursement, considering that I've been downloading these things, ultimately at my expense for over half a year now, but I dislike the thought of asking to be compensated for doing somebody a favor. Payment upon completion wasn't part of the original agreement, so I can't very well impose it now. What's more, making cookies for him and his mom as a parting gift has become a bit harder now too, in that two of the cookie containers we used to have are missing. Chances are they're somewhere in Naomi's room with the pizza sticks she's so fond of making and hoarding to herself in them, so if I remember, I'll ask tomorrow, because otherwise the last place I saw them was on the kitchen counter, holding (or perhaps containing) the banana and zucchini bread that George's mom made for me. Although we still do have one large container, as well as the method I used to transport the cookies I made for Munedust from here to where she lives, being putting a dozen into a plastic bag, and lining them up on their sides in a nice column, carefully rolling the bag over, and putting that bag inside of another one. That works, but it's quite messy-looking. Time for another topic change though, onto some serious matters.
As there's no real point save for keeping me from going into a panic to not mentioning his name, I sent Feathertail $22 via Paypal earlier today, with the following message attached, via Pastebin URL:
This $20 is to make Prized Possession mine again. Giving up all of my rights to it only for you to eventually turn around and shut the door in my face anyways was a dumb, dumb thing to do, and I despise the thought of there being a story written for me and about me, but which I am about as far removed from having anything to do with as I can possibly get.
I've only sent you half of the original price because forget it - I'm buying back the rights, not a whole story, along with an extra two dollars so that you can provide me with 200 words worth of a response. I would still ask (mind you, ask, not demand) that you change your comment on Furaffinity which says the disability *is* autism, to say that it's something *like* / very close to it. I don't know why I am the way I am yet, which is why I'd prefer to avoid labels. I could go off on a tirade about how and why what you did was wrong and dare I say an odd form of plagiarism (you essentially said my story spoke about you, when the only part you were supposed to have in it was writing the thing), but I won't, and instead just ask you to consider this: while I may not have asked for the disability theme, it works. Everything else aside, depression of the variety that I'm facing is more a disability than some other things out there, and my difficulties with friends and relating to pretty much everybody else in the past could very well be something of the same sort, that I've just been thinking of as normal up until now. However, it was my story, which is why I tried to take that where I wanted it to go as much as possible, and if you'll recall, I paid you an extra eighty dollars for the extra words, which you eventually turned into a grievance as well, meaning that I paid *you* to write about what *you wanted* in *my* story. And you wouldn't let me change that one certain part either, meaning what, altogether?
As I see it, your options are thus: accept this message and the above conditions and terms exactly as they are, or be prepared to write another story for me of at least 14,000 words in length at some point in the future. Oh yes, I would compensate you fairly (speaking of which, did the commissioner of Endure to the End do that, or did they just say thanks and run off when things were all done as well?), but I will not be run away from.
Thanks for your time, and as noted above, I've included an extra two dollars so you can give me some form of brief response. And kindly don't refund my payment either. I want my story back. That's all.
In all seriousness, I'm still practically bending over backwards to try and work things out nicely with him. I provided an option other than completely removing the offending comment mentioned in the second paragraph, and my ultimatum in the third is just that. There is of course a third option, being for him to refund that payment anyways, but that'd prove that he's more concerned about meeting and furthering his own ends than he is about the way his specialized works affect people like me. It's fine to say "If you don't like that then don't look at it", but he has something of mine, which he is perfectly entitled to in that he created it, but what isn't fine is him saying things of it that only he wants to be true. I haven't received a response yet either, and I send the payment much earlier this afternoon, so maybe he thinks he's doing me a favor by not responding, which is why I'm including the message in its full text in this entry. I want there to be an objective record of what happened between us instead of playing the victim card, which I imagine he's doing at least in the way he thinks. Maybe that's incredibly arrogant and presumptuous of me to say, but look at the facts: I have made every attempt to end this reasonably, including but not limited to asking three or four times if we could just agree to disagree. The most he's said to me is "I'm sorry you're feeling bad now", "You're forgiven", followed by "now please go away" in one instance, and "I'm sorry for stringing you along by saying I was willing to talk to people who reacted badly to An Enemy to God". I've sent him, well, at least $160 on top of the original price of the story now, bringing what originally cost $40 to $200, not counting commissioning the cover and illustrations for, and publishing of a book that I couldn't even look at before today. I have been beyond reasonable with him, albeit unstable for the first bit of the bad parts, and what do I have to show in return for it? Nothing whatsoever.
Which makes me wonder why exactly I'm still comparing myself to the guy and getting intensely distraught about our situations. Who cares if he's giving back to people with the stories other people commission him for? The very fact that he takes advantage of said people to write about himself should negate that on its own, perhaps nullified somewhat if he did change his commission descriptions, but even then, his hypocrisy and double standards are there for anybody to see, yet he'd apparently prefer to act as if they don't exist, and excommunicate anybody who points them out and won't let it go. Who cares if I spend entire days off playing videogames? That is what days off are for, and as of Thursday this week, my free time will be cut back by at least eight hours. Not a huge loss by any means, but you must understand that one of the things I previously wasn't able to get over is that all throughout these issues I've been dealing with since October, he has continued to write stories even though he may have been feeling bad, and I've spent my free time making ultimately meaningless progress in videogames. What I've failed to consider, however, is that throughout all of that time, I did not shirk my duties at work. Well, there was one night I had to call in because I just couldn't go with the way I was feeling, but aside from that, I've gone in every night I have been scheduled to work, and even on those nights where I would rather have run out screaming for all the panic and anxiety and veritable heart-rending pain I was experiencing, I remained as steadfast and stoic as possible. With one other exception for that supper shift where Manoah let me go home an hour early because I couldn't even stand up for more than five minutes. As for how that compares to him, for all intents and purposes, commissions are his job, and just as I have done the best I could under the circumstances, so has he. Ergo, even though I'm effectively doing a disservice to everything I stand for with such comparisons, we are equal. He is no better than I, and I am no better than him, and as for his giving back to people, there's a specific trick to that. I avoid contact with people I don't know, both online and in real life as much as possible, because I am much more comfortable being reclusive and keeping to myself, which means I am doing what comes naturally to me, just as he is doing what comes naturally to him. To feel bad because I'm not doing the same things as him is the equivalent to getting upset because certain staff at work only ever open, and I almost always close. Closing is what I've become accustomed to over the years, and you can be quite certain that forcing an opener to close, or a closer to open would not go over well. Although it would be funny to see, because the two parties would probably just end up switching shifts, but assuming a schedule like that was forced, they wouldn't be pleased with what they were given.
Another caveat is that I'm good at doing one thing that he is not, and that is listening to other people. Even though I'm terrible at offering consolation, listening and offering other points of view on things is something I could even see making a living out of, assuming there is or was ever a market for that. I can't remember what else I was going to say there, unfortunately, so I'll end on saying that for something that started out with a fictional story in a fictional world depicting fictional events that I already have in real life, to a certain extent, this has become a thoroughly rotten mess. I'm not saying it's over yet, because I'm saving such judgment for the point where I can go a month without being dragged down by it again. As for my story, it's presumably still on his site in the same way that certain works (like my reference sheet) are still on other artists' sites, even though I'd rather they weren't. I commissioned those, and while I may not entirely want them there, it's in my best interests that they stay where they are, and have my name next to them. What's also amusing is how because of all this, about the only picture I actually like these days, including the icon and full-size, full-color piece I got a little while back, is the first picture I commissioned from Pachabel. I kind of even want to find a way to get a nice, high-quality print of the full-sized image, but I'm holding off on those thoughts for now, because it could just be my brain looking for someplace else to start spending money.
In the end, just... I don't think there is an "in the end". There are still too many potential pitfalls and other setbacks I haven't yet encountered, such as whether or not I'll get a response to the above message, but like the title of this cut says, with writing about these things, I am free from what dragged me down most recently, and I believe that's all there is to it for now.
As for the rest of the day, I've mostly been fiddling around with my EZ-Flash, trying to figure out why Megaman Battle Network 4 suddenly only showed a white screen upon startup, but updating the loader fixed that, which unfortunately overwrote the custom theme I'd downloaded, so I had to search around for a way to combine the loader update and theme files together, and I think it's mostly working now. Along the way I found Goomba, a piece of GBA homebrew that emulates GB(C) games, but which I haven't played around with yet to answer my most important question: using the included "goombafront" program, is it possible to add multiple ROMs to the same .gba file? I should think so, because otherwise the frontend would need to be nothing more than a couple dialog boxes asking for the location of goomba.gba, the location of the ROM you want to attach to the former, and where to save the combined file. Even so, one game per GBA file seems much more convenient, and I'll try it either once I finish here or tomorrow sometime to make sure. I also found this post about Picross-like games while searching for an explanation of why Hatena Satena'a tutorial never seemed to end (which drove me to give up on the game earlier, and I haven't gone back to it yet), and from there, to downloading the DS games mentioned, and playing a couple levels on each. They're all a little more clunky than Picross DS as yet, and I don't foresee taking enough interest in them to pick up again for a longer amount of time soon, but yes, that's what I've done. Then on a somewhat spontaneous note I went out to 7-11 for candies, and as I was paying for my purchases, the guy behind the counter (not the one who is always surly) asked if he could ask a question without offending me. I said he could go ahead, meanwhile my mind started racing as to what he might want to know, because there isn't much of a personal nature that I am offended by these days, and then he asked "Why do you dress like that?" Yes. I wish I had more to say, but being asked that question has become so common that I'm almost getting bored with saying "Because it's something I'm into / that I enjoy doing". That is what I said tonight, but ultimately, I do it to be different. I do it because it's meaningful to me, and represents a large, if not the largest part of what makes me who I am, and I do it because it's fun to meet the occasional person who does take it seriously and with interest, but most importantly I do it because if I didn't, I wouldn't be who I am today. That's not to say the present can affect the past, but if I stopped, I would cease to be the same person that I am now, and in the end, I like who I am. I think that's as good a way to say it as any, don't you think?