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Jellyfish have no brains. You’re already pretty close.

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Dylan O’Brien for Elle Magazine


Dylan O’Brien for Elle Magazine

Tessa Gray Was Never Just One Thing


Let’s talk a little bit about Theresa Gray, a girl who was never just one thing. She was a girl with a book and a serious face. A girl who loved deeply and completely or not at all. Someone who believed that she was not brave nor strong nor a fighter and yet never, never turned away from even the most hopeless of fights.

She was raised to be proper. Raised to have manners and ideals that belonged to a class of people she wasn’t really a member of. Tessa grew up an orphan but well loved. She was also well indoctrinated into ideas about what a girl should or should not be allowed to do. And more than that, she believed them right. She was a warrior girl trapped inside a shined up china doll case.

She was also trapped by her gender, her poverty and her family. She never made plans. She was 16, when she was told she would never have children. Old enough to be married, but she had never considered children of her own. She didn’t make plans like that. She had considered her first kiss but not the man she might marry.

Her brother was a wastrel and the other children teased her for it. She was the child on the street that the other children were warned off of because their mothers didn’t want them around Nathaniel Gray and the sister couldn’t possibly be much better now could she? She made her first real friends at 16, a servant, a boy on the edge of death and another on the edge of madness.

"There is honour in blood and dirt," she needed to be told once because she believed, truly believed, that making a mess of that shined up case that was her body was a travesty. What they would think mattered to her. They. Her aunt, the girls at parties she had never been invited to, etiquette books and Jane Austen’s heroines. What would they think of a girl with a torn dress and broken nails?

Oh yes, she worried.

But it never stopped her.

She picked up the sword she didn’t know how to use to defend the boy she’d barely met. She refused to leave the party when the vampires started to burn. She would eventually attend a battle in a wedding gown. And after all that fighting, her aunt’s voice played through her head and the guilt started.

Jessamine’s voice joined Harriet’s, Jessamine who played the role a little better. Jessie who pretended to be exactly the type of woman that Tessa was supposed to aspire to. Not a warrior. Don’t get dirty. Don’t get angry. Violent thoughts are for the stronger sex. Brush your hair. Be gentle and obedient. Don’t lead men astray.

But she did that too, didn’t she? When Tessa fell in love she fell in love with her entire self. Her heart, her soul and every inch of her skin too. Oh the guilt would come. The guilt and the doubt but in the moment with Jem’s hands on her, she had suddenly understood that every inch of her skin was attached. She was not a set of ideals in a case. She was an entire person, all interconnected.

Tessa made her own choices. Tessa, once she understood what it meant to be an interconnected web of warrior and woman and damsel and protector. She made her own choices. Facing death and destruction and a loss so big she couldn’t yet fathom it all, she made her choices. She chose the boy who had come on the rescue mission because she understood, even then, 16 years old and at the end of the road, that to love and lose was better than to never love at all. And later, when her emotions were her own again, when the loss had settled from raw wound to ache, she chose him again.

She had power. She was wanted and needed for better and for worse. The magic made her vulnerable and the magic gave her a power to wield. The need to know what she was burned in her. The world stopped making sense when she discovered what she could do.

She had always asked questions. She had always wanted to know how the world worked. When the world was turned on its ear Tessa turned to questions and books. She read and she asked until it started to make sense. She studied and considered. But even that couldn’t answer the burning need to know what she was. What was this entire person she was discovering herself to be made of?

You see, Tessa Gray was never just one thing. She was magic and mundane. Angel and demon. Warlock and Shadowhunter. She was a warrior and a pretty face in a new dress, sometimes in the same moment. She fell in love twice, a simultaneous crash course in a heart that, much as the girl it lived in, refused to be only one thing.

Tessa could be overlooked, just a girl with a book, pretty but not beautiful. Clever but not highly educated. Well mannered but not high born. Tessa could be overlooked until she lit up in a blaze of glory and reminded you that a girl with a book is never just one thing.

insp (writing style)

insp (what is tessa gray)

Artist:Unknown Jay-Z ft. Rihanna & Kanye West
Title: UnknownRun This Town
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me:*fails a quiz*

drake: i’m just sayin you could do better

me:*studies harder graduates valedictorian and cures cancer*


u readin this?

u a princess.

i dont care if youre a goddamn bodybuilder, ur now princess protein

"The aftermath was the thing that was harder to deal with. Going in to do my first press junket, that’s a hell of a lot scarier than being naked up on TV!"

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