Winterizing your chrysanthemum orchids is not something most people think about doing, but it’s always good to have a plan B if things don’t go well during the summer months. If you’re thinking about planting some chrysanthemums, then you need to consider whether they’ll survive the winter. You might want to take them out of their containers and put them outside where they will be safe from frost and cold temperatures.

If you live in a colder climate, then you may decide to plant your chrysanthemums indoors. However, there are many reasons why you shouldn’t do this. Chances are that even though they survived the summer heat, they won’t survive the winter chill.

The reason for this is because when plants get cold enough, they stop growing normally and die. They become lifeless husks that aren’t able to produce any new flowers or fruit at all!

The same thing happens to us humans when we’re exposed to cold weather. When the temperature drops below freezing, our bodies start shutting down. Our blood starts clotting and our organs begin shutting down.

But what happens if you freeze your chrysanthemums? What would happen if you froze them so hard that they couldn’t grow anymore? Would they still be alive or would they just turn into mush?

It’s pretty obvious that plants don’t have nerve endings or brains. This means that they can’t feel pain when you cut them or cause them any sort of distress. However, it also means that plants do not experience any sort of suffering when you freeze them to death! That’s right; freezing chrysanthemums to death won’t cause them any pain or suffering. You can go ahead and try it if you like. It will not cause them any harm, but it will sure be bad for the environment!

The reason is quite simple. When you freeze an animal or a human to death, they gasp for air as their lungs and body become suffused with deadly ice crystals that cause them to stop breathing. It’s horrible to watch when it happens.

But plants don’t have this problem. When water inside a plant freezes, it doesn’t cause any distress. They are unable to feel pain and don’t have nerve endings.

If you want to experiment with this, then you should try putting an animal in your freezer for a few hours. Make sure you put it in some sort of sealed bag or container so that it doesn’t smell the freshness of your freezer making it think that it’s outside and free to roam around and look for food. You wouldn’t want your pet to get confused when you release it back into the wild.

But now you’re thinking that a few hours in the freezer might not be enough to kill an animal or a human.

Is there anyway you can increase its chances of surviving freezing conditions?

Well, one way to do this is to lower the temperature of your freezer to a deadly level. But you don’t want to do this because you might accidentally freeze some of your delicious ice cream.

The other way is to give your victim a lot of alcohol. This will make them sleep so deeply that they’ll never wake up. Just lock the door, set the temperature to absolute zero and wait for nature (or the freezer) to take its course.

While you’re waiting, you can test out your flowers to see if they’re still alive or completely frozen. If they are completely frozen, then you can take them out and put them on display in your room. If they’re still alive, then you should wait a few more hours before testing them again.

Now who’s ready for a science experiment?

The next day, you venture out of your room to explore the palace. You wander around looking at all the beautiful paintings and statues when you come across a glass display case. To your surprise, there are several flowers from the garden inside. The placard reads “Frozen in Time.”

How appropriate, you think to yourself.

After staring at the flowers for a while, you begin to notice a strange sensation coming over you. It’s as if you’ve seen this all before and somehow you know that these flowers are still alive. It’s a strange feeling and you begin to wonder whether or not it’s a dream or something more.

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Suddenly, you hear a door open behind you. You turn and see a large man wearing a butler’s uniform walking towards you. You notice that he is carrying a large knife in one of his hands.

Is this man coming to kill you?

You can’t be sure, but you do know that you’d better do something fast!

You could try to run away or …

You could stay hidden until he leaves.

Deciding that it would be best not to engage the butler directly, you duck behind a nearby statue. From this safer position, you watch as the man walks over to the display case and raises his knife into the air.

“I don’t know what you’ve seen,” he says, “But this doesn’t concern you.” With that, he stabs the knife into the glass and smashes it to bits. He reaches into the case and pulls out one of the frozen flowers.

“It’s just business, kid,” he says, tossing the flower from hand to hand. “Just business.”

He begins walking away. If you’re going to do something, you’re going to have to do it now!

You still have your pipe bomb in your pocket. Would you like to:

Try to kill the butler with your pipe bomb?

Or…

Try to follow the butler at a safe distance and see where he goes?

Family Reunion

As you wait for the butler to leave his room, you begin to wonder if he really is your stepfather. He could be lying in order to throw you off your guard.

Or maybe your real stepfather is even worse?

At this point you don’t know who to trust or what to think.

The butler finally makes his way out of his room and heads straight for the exit. He looks around cautiously as if making sure nobody is watching him, then quickly makes his way outside. You follow at a safe distance all the while wondering what he’s up to and if he really was the one who poisoned you.

It would make sense that the person who did it would want to keep an eye on you to make sure the job got done.

The butler walks to the edge of a nearby forest and stops at a large hole in the ground. It looks like it was dug up recently. The sides of the hole are still crumbling and the butler stares at it for a few seconds, then throws the flower in.

He quickly follows it with some dirt he picked up from the edge of the hole and then covers it back up. Before returning to the palace, he once again looks around to see if anyone is watching.

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You try to google “what to do when you find an unknown grave” on your phone, but the service has not been enabled on this old flip phone, which was the only one that was free. You can either return to the grave and try to find some answers or go back to the palace and investigate there.

Inquire at the grave again?

Or…

Go back to the palace?

Kidnapped!

You decide to try to find some help and head back towards the palace. There aren’t too many options available to you at this point, you can try to convince one of the royal guards to help you or you could go find Lena and try to get her to help you.

You feel like you can trust Lena so you head to the room she is staying in and Knock on the door. You hear some rustling from inside and the door swings open.

Lena grabs you by the collar and yanks you inside, closing the door behind you.

What’s going on?”

, she asks, worry filling her face.

You explain to her what happened and show her the bottle of poison. She reads over it briefly before nodding.

“Yeah, this is a strong dose of poison, it would be enough to kill several full grown men your size.”

You didn’t think about it before, but now that she says it, you start feeling dizzy. You grab a chair nearby and sit down.

Woah, are you OK?”

You just nod your head while you wait for the feeling to pass. It takes a moment, but eventually you start feeling better.

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“I was thinking we should go find one of the royal guards. If anyone would know about this it would be them.”

“Yeah, good idea. I’ll go with you.”

You and Lena head out of the room and start towards the royal guard barracks. The walk over there is uneventful as always, but you get there fairly quickly.

There are a few guards standing outside, which surprises you. You were expecting them all to be inside resting while on duty. You approach the nearest one and ask if you can speak with someone in charge.

He nods and goes back inside, leaving you and Lena standing outside waiting.

A few minutes pass before a guard comes out and beckons you both to follow him. You enter the barracks and are led through a series of hallways before ending up in front of a ranked royal guard.

You’re Felians, right? What do you want?”

The man obviously doesn’t have much patience, you best be direct.

“One of the members of our faith was recently murdered. We found this bottle of poison near the body and were told to speak with someone in charge to see if it was relevant to the case.”

The man takes the bottle from you and studies it for a moment before speaking.

“This is curare, a deadly poison, but not something that we use in our operations.”

So you don’t think it has anything to do with the case?

“We didn’t say that. It could be that this man was killed by a person or persons unknown for reasons unrelated to his duties or it could be that he somehow infringed on said duties. If that’s the case, this poison could’ve been used to frame the Felians.”

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How would this be relevant to you?”

The guard looks annoyed for a moment before answering you.

“We have had… problems in the recent past with members of our own chapter turning traitor and joining forces with the Felians.

It would be convenient for them if Mr. Mol were to die from a poison used by said traitors.”

Are you saying one of the royal guard is a traitor?”

The guard stays silent for a moment before speaking again.

“We’re not saying anything except that we are currently investigating this matter. That’ll be all for now.”

Can you tell us where we can find the rest of his team?”

The royal guard thinks for a moment before speaking.

“They might still be at their headquarters, if they are its located in a small office building near the docks. If they’re not there then I suggest you check the nearest tavern as that’s usually where you’ll find them.”

“Thank you sir.” You say while bowing.

You and Lena leave the barracks and head to the nearest tavern. After asking the bartender if he’s seen any of the Felian Fletcher’s he tells you to try the docks, they tend to idle around down there according to him. He also mentions that a group of royal guards came through not long ago asking questions.

You and Lena make a point to avoid them when heading to the docks.

When you get near the docks you begin asking around for the Felians, it doesn’t take long before someone points them out to you. They’re all lounging around in a circle playing a game of some sort. They don’t look like the most organized group but then again groups like these rarely do.

You and Lena approach them and they stare at the two of you expectantly.

What?”

one of them asks.

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“I want to join the Felians.” You say.

The group of them laugh.

“Well sure, we could use more help defeating the ECS, just gotta pass a little test first.”

Lena butts in at this point.

“Listen here, I’ve spoken to your leader Mr.

Mol and he sent us here to speak with the fletcher, where is he?”

Another one of them laughs.

Our leader huh?

Funny that he’d send a couple of kids to do his work for him.”

“Children can be dedicated to the cause, let them pass.” A voice from inside the warehouse says.

The group of them stare at you for a moment before moving aside.

“Fine, but just this once.” One of them says.

You and Lena head into the warehouse and find Mr. Mol sitting down waiting for you. His face looks much worse in person than it did in the painting.

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He has a large scar going down the right side of his face and he’s missing his right eye. It’s also much more obvious just how old he is, you had no idea the leader of the Felians was so old.

“So I’m guessing Lena here told you that I sent her to talk to the Felians.” Mr. Mol says.

You nod and he continues. “Good, then we can skip the formalities. Let’s get right to it.”

You’re wanting to join the Felians?”

you ask.

“No, I’m wanting to join the ECS.” Mr. Mol answers.

The ECS?

But…aren’t they our enemy?”

Enemy?

No, they’re business competitors and some of them are friends. Now due to their ongoing conflict with the Felians, they’re also our temporary allies of convenience. That doesn’t mean I’m gonna ask them for help though, I can handle the Felians myself. I’m just gonna make them pay for their attacks.”

But if you’re not asking them for help, why do we need to join them?”

“Because I’m gonna get my revenge on the Felians while this conflict is going on. It’s perfect for us because not only will it look like we’re loyal to the ECS, but we can also get the jump on various Felians raids we can carry out our own attacks at the same time. We’ll be hitting them in places where they’re going to least expect it, plus we’ll have the ECS to back us up when we really need it. It’s a great plan.”

But if you’re getting your revenge, won’t that lessen the amount of profit we can get?”

“Well yes, but if we do this right we should be able to get enough back that it’ll be worth it. Especially if we do a good enough job. We might even be able to avoid getting consumed by the ECS at some point in the future.”

But won’t the ECS still get all the credit for wiping out the Felians?”

You ask.

“Yeah, but as I said, they’re still business competitors first and foremost. They won’t harass us over petty things like that, your friend that works for them proved that much. I have connections there too, so it’s not like we’ll be at their mercy in the future.

Still, I wouldn’t advise ever trying to get out of the criminal life, because if you try to take too much from them they might just take it all back. Everything.”

Mr. Mol looks at you seriously before continuing.

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“Regardless of your decision, I’m still putting together my plan. The contracts will be available as usual. Think it over and if you don’t want to participate I won’t hold it against you.”

With those words Mr. Mol stands up to leave.

“I’ll see you next week, same time.”

You and Lena are left in the room alone with a couple of his lieutenants who also wait for him to leave before speaking.

So what’s your decision?”

The girl asks.

You look over at Lena who just nods.

“We’re in.”

“Great.” The girl says. “My name’s Talia and I’ll be one of the ones leading this operation.

This will go down in two weeks, we’ll meet here at dawn exactly and go over the plan then. For now you can go, but don’t go blabbing to anyone about this.”

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You and Lena stand up to leave and are soon on your way home.

So what did you think?”

You ask Lena.

Honestly?

I’m scared, but in your position I’d probably feel the same. If we don’t try to do something we’re going to die anyway when the ECS wipes us all out, and if we do try to do something there’s a chance we might die. At least this way we might live. For how long I can’t say, but at least we’ll have a chance.”

“Yeah, that’s how I feel too. I think we should practice as much as possible before the attack so we’re ready.”

“Well, we could do that, or we could go out for a couple drinks to calm our nerves a bit. Its up to you, either way I’m with you all the way.”

Lena smiles at you and takes your hand “Let’s get out of here, we’ll take a walk.”

The two of you exit the underground and begin wandering the streets of Holgard.

You don’t get far before you realize you’re being followed by several men in dark clothing. They don’t make any threatening moves, but they continue to follow you all the way back to your home.

When you arrive at your door, they stand off to the side and block your entrance (while still keeping a reasonable distance).

One of them steps forward and says “You’ve been marked by the ECS, you’re not to leave the city until the attack is done or you’ll be shot on sight.”

You and Lena look at each other, neither of you expected this. You can’t say you’re thrilled by it either.

“Also, if you attempt to warn anyone about our attack, the same thing will happen.”

Well what if we don’t survive your attack?

The boss of the Bloody Talons is practically a god in this city, people might not take too kindly to a bunch of out of towners attacking. It could cause a backlash.” You point out.

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“We’ll take that risk, but if you survive and try to leave the city, you will be shot.”

With those last words, the man turns around and walks away. You open the door and enter your home.

“Well this is a bit unexpected.” Lena says as she puts her weapons away.

You think?

I have to say I’m not happy about this. With this news Delergites in the know aren’t going to like us any more and the rest of the city is going to blame us no matter what. Not to mention this attack could really go either way.”

“Don’t worry, we’ll be fine.

So, are we going out for those drinks now or what?

Buy you a drink for your valiant efforts defending the realm today sir.”

You smile at Lena.

“You are just adorable sometimes.” You say, as you begin taking off your armor.

“Hey, I’m a lot more than just adorable.” She responds with mock indignation.

“Oh trust me, I know.” You say while staring in between her legs, instantly getting a look of disgust thrown at you.

“You pervert!” She says while lightly punching your arm.

You and Lena head out to get a few drinks. You’re not really paying attention to where you’re going since you tend to mainly stick to the poor districts where you’re more likely to get attacked. When you suddenly hear someone call out your name.

“Hey Keira, I thought that was you.

How have you been?”

You ask when you see who it is.

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“I’ve been okay. I saw you at the Holgard Watch barracks and thought that I’d find out what you’re up to these days.” Gwen says.

“Nothing much, the same old thing really.” You respond.

Gwen looks at Lena and then back to you.

So, is this someone special?”

She asks.

You look at Lena again and then back to Gwen.

“Well, I see where you’d get that impression, but we’re just having some fun together. Nothing serious.”

Gwen nods her head.

“Ah yes, just having fun together. I remember those days.” Gwen says with a smile.

Gwen and you chat for a while before she tells you that she has to go. You and Lena continue on to the tavern and spend the rest of the night there.

The next day is pretty uneventful, you train in the afternoon and sit in on one of the Baroness’ courts in the evening, nothing out of the ordinary there.

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When you go to sleep you are assaulted by nightmares again. You find yourself back in the forest with the strange man who has been stalking you in your dreams.

“I thought I told you not to drink that soup.” He says in a mocking tone.

What do you want from me?”

You ask as you feel fear take over your body.

“Everything dear boy, I want it all.”

You then awake with a start, you’re covered in sweat and feel like you might vomit. You get up and head to the bathroom and get rid of the little contents in your stomach and then splash some water on your face and do your best to collect yourself.

“It’s just a dream, it’s not even realistic.

How could someone want to take everything from me?

I have nothing.” You say to yourself.

You head back to bed and try to return to sleep, but the nightmare returns once again.

The next day you’re able to shake off the tiredness of little sleep and head to the barracks. As soon as you arrive Gwen walks up to you.

“Hey Keira, you’re just the person I wanted to see.” She says happily.

“I thought you would’ve left already.” You reply.

Leave? You don’t want me to stay?”

Gwen asks.

“I didn’t mean it like that…I just thought with the escort mission starting today and all…I mean with me being on it…”

“Oh I wouldn’t miss your big day for the world, besides I was actually going to ask if I could join the escort mission.”

You want to join the escort mission?”

“Yes, I find myself quite bored here and I need the distraction.

Besides, an extra guard can’t hurt and who better to guard a noble then another noble right?”

“I suppose that’s true. Well in that case, the more the merrier I guess.”

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Gwen smiles at your acceptance of her coming along and heads off to get her gear. You make a mental note to tell Sergeant Roberts that he’ll have one more member on his team.

The day passes quickly and before you know it, you’re all on your way to Ashton. The ride there is largely uneventful. You make small talk with Gwen who goes on about her life as a noble and the benefits and pitfalls that come with it.

Eventually you arrive in Ashton where you’re met by a man wearing a red cloak. You’ve seen others in the same cloaks walking around the town and going in and out of the local tavern.

“Ah the Lordship has finally graced us with his presence!” The man says walking up to your carriage.

“When I want your opinion, I’ll ask for it Len. That will do for the introduction, now listen closely because I’m only going to say this once. These people are here under my personal protection and if any harm comes to them, I’ll hold you personally responsible.

Understand?”

Len looks a bit nervous but nods.

“Good, now show them to their rooms and make sure they’re comfortable.”

“Yes sir!” Len says and walks towards the inn, you and the rest of the group follow behind.

You enter the inn and are shown to your rooms. Your a bit surprised at the level of comfort that has been provided for you. Gwen even happier than you as she exclaims how great the bath in her room is and promptly strips naked and hops in, not bothering to close the door all the way.

You close the door of your room and begin to undress as well when there’s a knock on the door.

Hey, is it alright if I come in?”

You hear Brenda ask from the other side of the door.

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“Yeah, it’s okay.” You say and soon Brenda is at the doorway.

“I just wanted to thank you again for giving me this opportunity.” She says.

“No problem Brenda, you’ve earned it.”

Brenda smiles at your comment and you take this opportunity to stare at her. You notice that she’s gotten a bit of color in her face from the trip and her long sleeves have been rolled up slightly to reveal some of her forearms. You also notice some light hair on her forearms that you can only imagine is everywhere else on her body.

Her large dark eyes look directly at you as she stands in the doorway, wondering if there’s anything else you’d like her to do.

“You can go.” You say, dismissing her.

“Okay.” Brenda says and disappears back into her room.

After your alone, you finish getting undressed and hop in the bathtub which is already filled with water. It’s a little cold, but you quickly adjust and relax in the warm water. Eventually you close your eyes and drift off…

“Hey! Get your hands off me!” You hear a voice say and you open your eyes.

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Before you is a naked Brenda, who’s struggling in your arms. She tries to slap you, but you block her hand and throw her down on the bed.

“No please! Stop!” Brenda begs, but you’re far from listening.

You climb on top of her and pin her arms down with your knees.

Sources & references used in this article:

OVERWINTERING OF DICTYOTA DICHOTOMA (PHAEOPHYCEAE) NEAR ITS NORTHERN DISTRIBUTION LIMIT ON THE EAST COAST OF NORTH AMERICA1 by JP Richardson – Journal of Phycology, 1979 – Wiley Online Library

Travel by J Fray – 1984 – thereflector.com

Pigmented. Polyethylene Films for Nursery Crop Storage by JA WYNSTRA, EM SMITH – Ornamental Plants–1983: A Summary of …, 1983 – kb.osu.edu

Biology of the Broadheaded Bug Alydus pilosulus (Hemiptera: Alydidae) by JD Wilkinson, DM Daugherty – Annals of the Entomological …, 1967 – academic.oup.com

IPM for the brown marmorated stink bug by W Quarles – IPM Practioner, 2014 – birc.org

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