As an ENTP, your primary mode of living is focused externally, where you take things in primarily via your intuition. Your secondary mode is internal, where you deal with things rationally and logically.
With Extraverted Intuition dominating their personality, the ENTP’s primary interest in life is understanding the world that they live in. They are constantly absorbing ideas and images about the situations they are presented in their lives. Using their intuition to process this information, they are usually extremely quick and accurate in their ability to size up a situation. With the exception of their ENFP cousin, the ENTP has a deeper understanding of their environment than any of the other types.
This ability to intuitively understand people and situations puts the ENTP at a distinct advantage in their lives. They generally understand things quickly and with great depth. Accordingly, they are quite flexible and adapt well to a wide range of tasks. They are good at most anything that interests them. As they grow and further develop their intuitive abilities and insights, they become very aware of possibilities, and this makes them quite resourceful when solving problems.
ENTPs are idea people. Their perceptive abilities cause them to see possibilities everywhere. They get excited and enthusiastic about their ideas, and are able to spread their enthusiasm to others. In this way, they get the support that they need to fulfill their visions.
ENTPs are less interested in developing plans of actions or making decisions than they are in generating possibilities and ideas. Following through on the implementation of an idea is usually a chore to the ENTP. For some ENTPs, this results in the habit of never finishing what they start. The ENTP who has not developed their Thinking process will have problems with jumping enthusiastically from idea to idea, without following through on their plans. The ENTP needs to take care to think through their ideas fully in order to take advantage of them.
ENTPs are fluent conversationalists, mentally quick, and enjoy verbal sparring with others. They love to debate issues, and may even switch sides sometimes just for the love of the debate. When they express their underlying principles, however, they may feel awkward and speak abruptly and intensely.
The least developed area for the ENTP is the Sensing-Feeling arena. If the Sensing areas are neglected, the ENTP may tend to not take care of details in their life. If the Feeling part of themself is neglected, the ENTP may not value other people’s input enough, or may become overly harsh and aggressive.
Under stress, the ENTP may lose their ability to generate possibilities, and become obsessed with minor details. These details may seem to be extremely important to the ENTP, but in reality are usually not important to the big picture.
As an ISTP, your primary mode of living is focused internally, where you deal with things rationally and logically. Your secondary mode is external, where you take things in via your five senses in a literal, concrete fashion.
Like their fellow SPs, ISTPs are fundamentally Performers, but as Ts their areas of interest tend to be mechanical rather than artistic like those of ISFPs, and unlike most ESPs they do not present an impression of constant activity. On the contrary, they lie dormant, saving their energy until a project or an adventure worthy of their time comes along—and then they launch themselves at it. The apparently frenzied state that inevitably ensues is actually much more controlled than it appears—ISTPs always seem to know what they’re doing when it comes to physical or mechanical obstacles—but the whole chain of events presents a confusing and paradoxical picture to an outsider.
ISTPs are equally difficult to understand in their need for personal space, which in turn has an impact on their relationships with others. They need to be able to “spread out”—both physically and psychologically—which generally implies encroaching to some degree on others, especially if they decide that something of someone else’s is going to become their next project. (They are generally quite comfortable, however, with being treated the same way they treat others—at least in this respect.) But because they need such a lot of flexibility to be as spontaneous as they feel they must be, they tend to become as inflexible as the most rigid J when someone seems to be threatening their lifestyle (although they usually respond with a classic SP rage which is yet another vivid contrast to their “dormant,” impassive, detached mode).
These territorial considerations are usually critical in relationships with ISTPs; communication also tends to be a key issue, since they generally express themselves non-verbally. When they do actually verbalize, ISTPs are masters of the one-liner, often showing flashes of humor in the most tense situations; this can result in their being seen as thick-skinned or tasteless.
Like most SPs, ISTPs may have trouble with rote and abstract classroom learning, which tend not to be good measures of their actual intelligence. They tend, sometimes with good reason, to be highly skeptical of its practical value, and often gravitate towards classes in industrial arts; part-time vocational/ technical programs can be useful to even the college-bound ISTP.
In terms of careers, mechanics and any of the skilled trades are traditional choices, and those ISTPs with strong numerical as well mechanical gifts tend to do extremely well in most areas of engineering. Working as paramedics or firefighters can fulfill the ISTP need to live on the edge; they are at their best in a crisis, where their natural disregard for rules and authority structures allows them to focus on and tackle the emergency at hand in the most effective way.
ISTPs with more sedate careers usually take on high-risk avocations like racing, skydiving, and motorcycling. While aware of the dangers involved, they are so in touch with the physical world that they know they can get away with much smaller safety margins than other types.
It’s two twenty P.M. on a Monday and Gabriel gazes at Charles’ sheets-covered, sleeping body with a unimpressed stare. Gabriel coughs yet Charles continues not to look up or acknowledge him, face hidden, nuzzling the pillow it’s against. His breathing is calm and all Gabriel wants to do is leave the room so he can stop watching Charles’ chest slowly rise and fall, over and over and over again.
One of Gabriel’s hands holds his briefcase while the other taps, taps, taps the metallic nightstand impatiently. He checks his watch again—2:24 P.M.—and he sighs, massaging his forehead for a couple of seconds.
Their lunch date was supposed to be at one and a half.
Peter’s eyes were glossy from the lack of sleep. Glossy yet dry, in the way they closed every few seconds but wouldn’t stay shut. It didn’t help having Leighton around, almost touching him; the mattress wasn’t doing him any favors, either. It was one of those nights where he’d just wander around the house and probably start working on the experiment he already had ideas for—if the older man let him, because earlier that day he’d been a victim of inhalation exposure of yet-to-name chemical compounds. Needless to say he most likely wasn’t dead thanks to Leighton. Again.
He knew his croaked, sleep-filled voice wasn’t going to help when he started mumbling. “Would you let me go to the lab?” it was a long, long shot the one Peter was making. With the dim light of the bedside lamp making his whole sense of sight all the more unreliable, he could only partially see Leighton’s face, but he knew what expression it had. The dead silence told him everything he needed, to be honest.
Besides getting an emergency shower, he got a Leigh that was weirdly aware of him for the rest of the evening. It wasn’t common to see Leighton in such a blatantly protective behavior. Granted, he still had that stoic and boring little expression of his the whole time and Peter had no idea how to erase it. Making jokes about almost dying probably wasn’t the best idea.
And now he just lay next to him and read. It wasn’t sleep time for him yet and actually, they had gone to bed earlier than usual. For Peter to be fickle shouldn’t have been such a surprise. He rested his forehead on the man’s shoulder; even though he wasn’t tired enough to be asleep, his whole body felt like it was nailed to the bed, restless and heavy all at the same time.
Peter sighed and nuzzled Leighton’s neck—or what he supposed was Leighton’s neck. The more he did it, the more he felt the man responding to the touch even more, and actually settling the book aside.
When his tongue started blindly mapping the jaw, Peter didn’t give it much thought. Things like this were what made his brain slow down, and perhaps that’s what he had to look for. He needed a full-stop. Leighton’s eyes were wider than usual when Peter’s met them; he sighed too, releasing a warm puff of breath that made Peter’s body go limp and snuggle closer. His lips still brushed against the man’s slight stubble that covered the chin.
"Do that again." Leighton said calmly and without any trace of doubt or shame. To that, Peter could only comply, this time nipping that place of Leighton’s neck where the skin was smooth and tender.
The more he did it, the more he knew he’d leave an assortment of patterns all over Leighton’s neck; the more he did it, he knew Leighton was not going to let him sleep much, in the end.
The afternoon went nondescript between the two of them; Gabriel working, Charles watching television—while not really watching it at all. Being on the same room while Gabe was working had become an usual pastime, a boring one, but a common nonetheless. Almost like back when he lived alone, but with company.
He hated that laptop of Gabe’s with all his might, though.
It was hard to tell went they’d become so comfortable which each other’s company to the point they didn’t need to be doing anything. To the point they didn’t even need to bicker at each other, even if they did that a lot anyway. It was hard to pinpoint the exact moment such a thing happened, but Charles wasn’t one to give a fuck about that. Every so often he glanced at the curly-haired man who was so focused typing this time, unlike that other one they had… annoyed the lady that lived on the floor above. Charles licked his lips at that memory.
He could, should be doing productive stuff, such as cleaning the floor, which was in an post-apocalyptic state. Doing the dishes was also a possibility. Both were unlikely at that, and Gabe’s mouth was shut because he knew that fact very well. It didn’t stop the pup from giving him the occasional and brief dirty look.
"You’re staring at me—a lot." Gabriel’s eyes didn’t move in the slightest from the screen.
Charles grinned at the matter-of-factly tone, sitting closer next to the boy. He nuzzled Gabriel’s shoulder, which was covered by that thin gray fabric that offended Charles to a painful level. “Is it a crime, pup? That you’re so good-looking?” He could only smile and chuckle kindheartedly when Gabriel blushed at the cheesy little getaway line, and for a second Charles might have forgotten to be an asshole. “You’re just the only remotely interesting thing around. Says more about my surroundings than about you.” For a second.
The blush faded and a cute little pout ensued. Charles kissed Gabriel’s cheek before standing up and grabbing the younger man’s laptop on the process, right from Gabriel’s lap, making him protest.
"Charles, what the—"
"I want your attention. I’m bored."
"Well, I’m not your entertainer."
"Yes you are. You’re my husband." The word wasn’t part of the plan. Charles took a second to blink and put the laptop on the coffee table. Gabriel just stared at him with eyebrows raised and the hint of a smile.
"It’s the first time you say it." The awe and the sweetness in Gabriel’s voice was sickening. Completely and utterly sickening.
"You are." He said, shrugging. It was a bad moment to be shirtless, because the flush of blood in his chest was just making Gabriel smile wider. Charles frowned. "Stop that thing. It’s annoying."
"I’m an annoying husband, you’re right." Gabriel was totally not going to let him live that down, that much was true. He got up and wrapped his arms around Charles’ neck. "The most annoying ever."
Charles rolled his eyes. His blush was getting worse. “Glad you’ve accepted it.” Nothing good ever comes from Gabriel’s laptop. He was going to destroy it.
It’s a good thing Wallace’s so naturally warm; a ‘makeshift chimney’, ‘walking heater’, ‘almost-human oven’, and the like. Because winter nights were the absolute worst when surrounded by rotting wooden walls and a floor covered with layers after layers of dust that no matter what Wallace did, would not go away. As if filth and the house were one with the other. Perks of living in an abandoned home with a cat that’d not bother pick up a goddamn dirty cloth, probably.
The only mattress that wasn’t completely torn apart had to be shared by the two of them. To boot, it was small. Wallace dragged it to the only room that didn’t smell weird, yet, of course, had its other quirks. For example, every night, the wind made the windows’ broken glass clatter loudly. Whenever it happened, Charmaine snuggled closer to his chest. He always wrapped his arms around her because it made her body stop trembling and her breath even. No one said a word about it the morning after.
Wallace’s routine was feeling like he’d missed something. He’d forgotten to do a chore. Perhaps the main door was open, or the laundry was not neatly-folded, or—or something. It made him frown and think and sleeping became harder each time. So he made himself a mess of stray thoughts until he nodded off. Funny, how he always got up before Charmaine did, too, and how she complained when he settled her back into the bed without his body to keep her warm anymore.
Even at work, this nameless thing felt ever-so-present in each of his movements—and the lack thereof when at night. Tossing and turning was out of the question, with Charmaine’s breathing almost matching his this time. It wasn’t a roller-coaster joining with the windows in a cacophony. She wasn’t having nightmares or trying to fight Wallace’s embrace. Charmaine was completely at ease, and peace was such a rare thing to have with her. Like the first time they slept together, all those years ago.
He felt sleepy just remembering it, for some reason. He felt sleepy just looking at her, restlessness slowly draining away.
Perhaps the thing that he was missing was, yeah, right there in front of him. Right there, peacefully sleeping in his arms, basking in what little Wallace had to offer but gave anyways.
As he took a deep breath, he tightened his hold around the girl and nuzzled her face against her short, soft hair. It didn’t smell bad. In fact, it smelled like wildflowers, like that shampoo he’d used when he showered her, not so long ago. It looked like that purchase hadn’t gone to waste.
He smiled, and kissed Charmaine’s temple.
There was absolutely nothing to do that day.
Which could only mean the worst. Yes, the very worst, in the shape and form of a young, tall, slim boy, sitting on his lap and eating up whatever attention Charles gave him. He talked nonstop, but he was one of the few people Charles didn’t mind actually listening to, or pretend to listen. The man’s expression was stoic, arms wrapped around the younger’s frame, counting the number of times Peter paused.
They were, unsurprisingly, not many.
The afternoon came that way and dragged until the slow beginning of the night; gradually, the moon made its way into the sky along with the stars—not that Charles knew if that was happening at all, shit. He could only assume, applying outdated clichés and sayings, plus the sight that came from the window of Peter’s tiny apartment. He had suggested for Peter to get a new one, one he’d help pay, but his cousin had denied the offer.
It was one of the few things the Derane had in common, he guessed. Particularly then, Peter and Charles. They liked simplicity in their space, complexities in the things they did in them. And right then, all that was being done was Peter talking—about some experiment he had done. Said experiment was actually quite interesting, but Charles was too busy mindlessly stroking Peter’s back.
How’s college? And other small talk wasn’t necessary with the two of them. Just white noise, silence, Peter’s enthusiasm-thick voice, Charles’ hand against the dark brown—and getting quite long, too—hair, this time. Two ahead of the day’s slow decay.
"In what are you thinking?"
Peter and Charles might be alike in some aspects, however they’re different in most. In other circumstances they would not get along, but they grew up together, and have, subconsciously maybe, learned to get each other’s cues.
So when Charles shrugged and leaned his head back against the couch, Peter sat more comfortably on his lap, pulling out his phone but still leaning into Charles’ hand.
In the heart (Americana) (1/?)
The sky was a battlefield between the colors it had always been and the ones it longed to become. Clouds settled as simple spectators, melding with the rest of the space; the bastards were picking sides, putting bets on the to-be-chosen winner. On the ground there were the flowers, the red-blue-white flags, and the truck stop accompanied by the (quite lovely) trailer park, the small red office, the diner with the big-white-lettered sign. They were all in harmony with the endless road, a straight once-black-as-the-night line of asphalt that got lost right along where Lauren’s vision started slacking.
So the sky was a battlefield and Lauren could only wait and see how the remains turned out, whilst alone—not alone, not really. She had the flowers, the ever-present sound of a coming truck or car, and right then, the company of a lady whose shift at the diner had reached a small break.
Meg, as her name-tag announced, had offered her bacon and eggs, perhaps because of the sight of a lonely woman exploring the stop, sitting at the bar and asking for a glass of water, as that was the only thing she could afford. Lauren refused at first, in turn Meg insisted, and as a reward she got Lauren to eat, a grateful smile twitching her lips upwards when she was finished.
'Breakfast's on the house'; it was the nicest thing she’d gotten in quite a long time.
Meg was sitting next to Lauren by the diner’s entrance, not talking but looking, at the battlefield, the road, the gum-wrappers losing their bright colors thanks to the merciless time. Comments were shared after a while, a question emerged—a question Lauren was used to the way she was used to breathing.
"Aren’t you afraid?" Meg’s green eyes were open with bubbly, loud curiosity. She looked genuinely concerned, which Lauren appreciated, really—but, she had the answer already prepared. Perks of having been asked more times than what she could count with her fingers.
"I’m not." Shrugging, Lauren gave her half a smile. "I’ve been doing it for a while. I think it’s a family thing not to be afraid of doing reckless stuff."
Charles, Peter, Jacob, Margaret, Carrie, Elizabeth; more names came to mind, names than went around the family’s history. There were probably more. People too far away, women that had changed their last names and were lost track of. It was a running joke that there was Derane people everywhere. That Derane members were like gum-wrappers, dragged away by everything, or rabbits, because they liked to fuck a lot.
It’s a funny metaphor, and Lauren considered explaining it to Meg, but she was gone. Lauren checked her practically-empty backpack once more; a couple bucks, coins, a bottle of water, a toothbrush, a jackknife, spare clean underwear—something was missing. Lauren frowned and checked again. Her extra shirt and jeans were gone. That’s all she had to get by until the next truck stop. She was at the interstate’s dubious mercy, had to leave soon, and had been robbed.
Luck and life were funny too; they gave you something you needed then took away what you already had.
"Are you sure it’s a family thing and not a you thing?” Meg’s voice made Lauren straighten up quickly, glancing at the woman that approached her with a few nameless things on her hands. More charity? Lauren raised an eyebrow. When it came to the question, though, she couldn’t answer. Yeah, of course she had things to bring to the table. For once, she wasn’t a hermit, like Charles, or an enthusiast, like Peter. What was Meg hinting at? Lauren didn’t know so no answer was provided, and Meg ended up leaving something in her hands.
The clean, nice-smelling fabric was a surprise. It was her shirt and her jeans, but different—the ones she had in her backpack were slightly dirt-covered. She looked up at Megan, both eyebrows raised, mouth speechless.
"I just wanted to help out a little." Meg said, mimicking Lauren’s languid shrug and smile from earlier. "Sorry I took them without permission. You had fallen asleep by the stop, anyone could have robbed you and—"
"Thank you." Lauren surprised Meg, and herself, when she threw her arms at the woman she knew nothing of and hugged her. A stranger, but a stranger that had been kind enough to help her in such a selfless way. Very few people offered that, much less Derane’s. She wasn’t used to what solidarity was like.
"C’mon, go. It’s eight o’ clock. The truck-drivers must have finished smoking by now."
Jacob understood many things. At a young age, he’d learned what it was like to feel rejected and erased by somebody who was supposed to be one of his most important life figures. He was the product of a fling, a one night stand gone wrong. Never in the end met the guy. As he grew up, life and death weren’t so rare concepts, given the profession he had picked upon the rest. Being trusted to be the one to get people out, to carry them when their lungs started drowning in the thick grey smoke and the heat took its toll—all happening within minutes. Within seconds, the floor above could collapse and Jacob could be crushed, holding a concussion-unconscious man in his arms, wearing a tunic and boots and helmet and then, death.
But even then, he had someone; he’d always had someone. He never went hungry and always had good clothes to wear. He had friends and he had his mom. Jacob couldn’t say the same thing about Charles.
"No, I need to talk to you."
They were just steps away. Charles was fixing his motorcycle, grease-stained work clothes contrasting Jacob’s clean, bright-colored uniform.
"Busy." Charles granted him a warning glance, eyes flickering toward Jacob, then to what he was working on.
At that, his shoulder’s slumped for a couple of seconds, but Jake didn’t give in, approaching Charles with a frown in his features, hands extended, frustrated with having to explain something to someone who’d not bother listening. "Give me a minute, will you? Right now, then I leave and never come back or whatever else you want."
"Whatever y’say will change nothing." Charles sat on the floor and grabbed a rag from nearby his toolbox, cleaning his hands as he talked. “Don’t care.”
"Except you do care.” Jake pointed out, voice making emphasis on the words. “You do care and you hate that you care, but you do, so you better fucking listen to me, okay?” His brother shrugged, looking up at him, waiting. For once Jacob did feel Charles was paying attention to him. "I don’t know what you want from me but I sure as hell know what I want from this, from us. Do you want me to say I’m sorry? I will go and say sorry to you. Do you want me to change the past? I’m sorry, I’m so fucking sorry I can’t."
Something had taken over him, something that rarely did. It wasn’t anger, at least not in its purest form, but it was related to it. It was his defense mechanism speaking, one he only saved for very few occasions. Even when his life was at risk he didn’t feel this way. This way was reserved for moments were all he could do was to talk—the opposite of what his brother did. Charles remained silent, eyes fixed on Jake’s.
Before Charles dared dismiss him with a few words, he continued talking. "My life hasn’t been easy, you know. It has not been as hard as yours but… but it has not been perfect either. You have to understand that."
"That’s not what this is about."
"Then tell me what it is about.”
Charles was going to reply, yet was stopped when Jacob’s phone loudly rang. Jake made the gesture of cancelling the call, and when he was going to do it, he noticed it was from the station—so it had to be urgent. He hesitated, looking between Charles and the call for two seconds. By the time he had tapped his phone to answer the call, Charles had resumed his activities.
The silence between them went back into place as Jacob talked with his boss. Apparently he needed to be at work as soon as possible to fill the empty spot some had left.
Jacob accepted his superior’s request and ended the call, looking at Charles with a defeated expression. “I have to go.”
Charles raised an eyebrow, making less out of the situation again and this time, Jacob didn’t have the chance of trying to convince him again. ”Then go.”
"It’s not over yet." He argued, albeit he knew it was, at least for a while.
Shirts and pants and underwear relieved the otherwise flat floor and on the nightstand, a cup of water was half-empty; it’s already too cold to the tongue. Someone got it at midnight and left it there. The night was over, and so was the sleepiness, although Charles had not noticed it just yet, with eyelids heavy still, bed comfy enough not to leave. The dark blue sheets were scrambled landscape-like around not one, but two bodies.
On Charles’ head, it’s like that as well. Reality and dreams were too mixed for him to distinguish one from the other, yet dreams were gradually vanishing to leave the former alone. Like losing memories, the only anchor being the warmth, the second body on the bed next to him.
He breathed through his parted lips and felt the man move toward him—even closer, to the point their skin brushed. Gabriel’s hands were grabby, trying to pull Charles like he was more necessary than say, a half-empty glass of water on the nightstand next to him. Being needed was something still Charles struggled with, and Gabriel’s fingertips were torches lighting him up. Sharp reminders, hazy around the edges. The usual doubt Gabriel showed was still asleep.
"Morning." The boy’s voice was lazy and lacking its signature softness, but this was compensated when Charles felt a chaste pressure against his lips. Gabriel kissed him three times, in fact. The second time he had missed Charles’ mouth and ended up on his nose—at least, Charles thought he had missed.
Such kisses were barely something he had experienced before. They were not greedy nor hungry nor lustful. They were there because they could be, nothing else. It was confusing, and so Charles didn’t think about it. Yet.