Reviews for Take Any Road
Kast64 chapter 4 . 8/29
I live in hope that one day you will finish this. It's without doubt the best story I have read for these two characters and I still think about it from time to time - hanging there, waiting for closure. I know it's probably unlikely, but I guess I can hope.
Guest chapter 4 . 1/29/2015
I'm sure you're over this storyline. Unfortunately, I am not! Just putting in my two cents that it would be amazing if you finished this up. I absolutely love the way you write these characters and I just keep reading your stories over and over again!
Guest chapter 4 . 6/29/2014
I love this story! I know the show has been over forever and you've probably moved on, but I would LOVE it of you finished. I have such a huge amount of love for these characters. Pretty please for an update! Thanks.
Guest chapter 4 . 2/23/2014
Hi, when will you be updating this story? When is the next chapter? Would love for you to finish this story. :D
Fourbubbles chapter 4 . 9/6/2013
Can't wait for the next chapter. When are these two going to figure this love thing out? Missing flashpoint and appreciating the excellent writing. Thank you!
Ace Bullets chapter 4 . 6/2/2013
This just continues to impress. You're striking a great balance between the lingering horror and grief of That Day (and by extension, the day Lewis died) and the budding relationship between Spike and Winnie. It's absolutely adorable how things are progressing. All of Spike's internal dialogues ring true, and I feel like I want to just reach out and hug the poor guy for all he's been through.

I happen to like Monopoly, so I was laughing right along with Winnie at Spike's poor-sport attitude.

And just as an aside... you get the biggest, brightest gold star for mentioning that they used to go out to eat doubles. :D

Kudos, too, for making Leah more real and more human than they ever did in the Show. She was a horribly under-utilized character, and you give her a chance her to be three-dimensional. You make her seem fun, caring, compassionate and interested in Spike's well-being. I'd like to think this is exactly how she would have been if the writers had given her a chance to have more of an impact. I definitely laughed when Leah challenged Spike's resolve: "You'll tell me. Eventually. You can't hide from me." - It was Leah who noticed Spike noticing Winnie in the first place, so you know she has a vested interest in all that. Thanks, also, for having Spike realise she's not a terrible person, and that there's no need to compare her goodness to Lewis' goodness.

I sincerely hope to get more of this story from you, so update soon!
pennie.lakeyborton chapter 4 . 5/27/2013
Greeting from the very soggy & wet state of Iowa,
Spike better be worried! It's already happened and there nothing he or Winnie can do about it and Leah knows it. Now it just them to realize it.
You keep writing & I'll keep reading!
kdj539 chapter 4 . 5/21/2013
Was patiently awaiting an update and you didn't disappoint - well maybe a little since it's been sooooo long since you posted! Just love your Spike and Leah dynamic - too bad we didn't get more of it on the show. Your stories make up for it though!

So Winnie being so cautious? Can't wait to see where you go with this story.

As ever I will be patiently awaiting an update.
Kast64 chapter 4 . 5/21/2013
I was SO excited to see that you had updated this. I don't like to pester, so I've been waiting patiently. And the wait was worth it. I love the way you are carefully navigating their way. Also: Jules knowing just the right thing to say. Spike trying to tamp down his enthusiasm for giving Winnie a lift to Boss' place. Winnie knowing that he needs distraction - even if it is playing Monopoly - I'm with Spike here - I hate that game!
I also loved Spike's brave move suggesting they cook Italian food from scratch just so he could spend all that time with her, and admitting to himself that was why.

I hope that Leah's intuition is accurate and that the things Spike thinks he is hearing in Winnie's voice really are there, even though he is trying not to get any hopes up.

My patience knows no bounds when it comes to your stories, but, you know, think of me, waiting...
Mollylyn chapter 4 . 5/18/2013
Oh monopoly, how you can send valuable time down the drain for no apparent reason. I adore the idea of these two cooking together. Actually, maybe it's more just I like the idea of Spike in a kitchen. If I were you I wouldn't read too much into that... Anyway, not sure I ever figured Winnie as a cook but I could totally see her going all overboard and starting a take-out business in her kitchen. And Spike's confusion over it. Yeah it's just all great.
I review weird.
I always Love the way you write Spike and Leah. This siblingy thing we only really got a glimpse of once (in that episode I can't remember the name of where Leah and Spike were siblingy and she sent him to Winnie for rejection...) this sentence is too long. I like seeing the sibling like relationship between Spike and Leah. And "Spi-ike!" and "Le-ah!" made my day. Somewhere there's a parent telling a kid to knock it off but really that's actually meant for Spike and Leah.

Sense is on vacation.
Tirsh chapter 4 . 5/16/2013
Sorry it took me sooo long to review - I read it and then I had to go back and start at the beginning again - because it's just so good. So true every step of the way to how life just sort of stops when something like this happens and everyone is just trying to maintain. And it must be so hard to write it in a way that keeps it real but keeps the story moving and I don't know how you manage it - but you do - brilliantly.

Love how all of Spike's girls are looking after him- from Winnie distracting him and entertaining him and helping him hold it together in the moment to Jules reminding him that the important things are still the same as they always were to Leah poking at him and helping him look forward (even if he's not ready to do that yet). I so heart the bit about his mom's kitchen and things that make sense and it's just so perfect. And how he keeps dipping into the cookies. hee.

And also - I have hatred in my heart for the game of Monopoly - I seriously think I squee'd a little to hear that Spike does too. I do think he and I could have a rousing game of trivial pursuit though- maybe some battleship? just saying - but they were so cute playing it! Love that she totally judged him for going to jail - so funny.

I continue to live in awe of your mastery of the tiny details that tell the real story. you really must tell me how you do that sometime.
Ealasaid Una chapter 4 . 5/15/2013
Winnie seems so strong. she hasn't broken yet. she trying to help put.
Random chapter 3 . 4/3/2013
Please update!
Ace Bullets chapter 3 . 3/28/2013
More brilliance, and more lines to like in Chapter 3:

"He's not entirely sure that he is right but she looks so relieved that he doesn't have the heart to tell her that he might be full of shit."

I just really love Spike's internal dialogue, and this line was so telling. Haven't we all done this? Said something that was probably right, but had zero basis in any facts, all for the sake of comforting someone else? And all the while you're hoping you're right, or that the other person won't call you on your B.S.?

Also loved: "When it's his turn, he sits in the chair by the bed and just sighs. Boss is sleeping or maybe drugged up but either way he's out of it and Spike's trying to hear Boss's voice, trying to feel Boss's hand on his back but he can't feel anything except the rumble of an explosion he didn't even see and all he can hear is Donna laughing, still in her tac gear, everyone else all dressed up and Jules in white."

Greg and Spike's father-son relationship was so good in this Show, and I can totally imagine that Spike would have had moments like this, sitting by Greg's bedside, re-living those awful moments from That Day, wanting Greg to come out of it, partly because they'd already lost so much, and partly because of how much respect and what would be the closest thing to paternal love they shared.

I burst out laughing at Spike's recollection of Donna's new "accessory" for Babycakes when she told him the robot was looking 'a little blue'. Utterly hilarious. Doesn't exactly count as a 'hazing' ritual, but totally in keeping with the sorts of pranks they might have pulled on each other in that place.

And oh, my goodness, Donna's funeral. If this is how it had gone (had they written it and shown it in the finale), *I* would have been a huge mess on the floor. Your description of Hank was shocking and pretty much made me want to cry on the spot just picturing him:

"The man looks like someone punched him, like he's still in shock, eyes just a little too wide, moves around like he's got a cement boulder sitting right between his shoulders."

More greatness with Spike's observation about Winnie at the cemetery: "He's thinking that Winnie's so pretty, she almost doesn't look real, how it has next to nothing to do with how she actually looks, even though her looks are pretty great too – he doesn't even think he's making sense to himself."

(Maybe Spike just needs to expand his vocabulary and replace 'pretty' -which can be such a common, throwaway word, and use 'beautiful', which doesn't have to have anything to do with looks at all.)

And of course having to 'confront' Hank in the face of all this brings to the fore the very real reasons why Winnie had her 'rule' about dating cops in the first place. Sure, Hank has reasoned it out that Donna loved her job; wouldn't have wanted to go out any other way, but it still doesn't make things any better or blot out the sad truth that had she retired when she said she would, she would still be alive. Someone *else* would have died, but Hank would still have his wife.

To wit, this line was especially painful: "Spike kind of thinks she wouldn't have wanted to go at all, would have wanted a few more years with Hank first, or maybe a hundred, but he knows all the ways the body works, all the things it does to protect you, all the things it makes you tell yourself so that you can keep going, so he just reaches out, shakes the other man's hand, pats his arm. "

It was also completely understandable Spike's efforts not to cry where people could see him even though that's all he wanted to do, and coming home and finding that the one person in the world he wanted to be with has come right along and is standing in the doorway... And him not being afraid to be vulnerable right there speaks volumes about how right they are for each other.

So, all-in-all, thanks for sharing this one. You crystallized Spike's thoughts and emotions for me, and allowed me to see Winnie the way he sees her.
Ace Bullets chapter 2 . 3/28/2013
I'd given this a read and reviewed chapter 1 when you first posted it, but didn't think I'd be able to give it the sort of full-length review it deserved. It was my plan to come back to it after a while, sit down, really reflectively, and write something good.

Well, words still sort of fail me. There has been an adequate amount of time since I watched the finale to have processed what happened, and the emotions aren't raw anymore. I liked that Spike and Winnie came through it as a couple, seen holding hands so meaningfully in that last episode. Even though we never saw them grow as an established couple, the implications were there from early on. Now, I'm not much of a shipper on the best of days, but Spike and Winnie I could get behind.

You've done such an incredible job here, this stream-of-consciousness sort of exploration of Spike's thoughts about That Day, about his team, and of course, about Winnie. What you've done is make me see Winnie with new eyes. As a background character, she really didn't get to do a lot or say much, but as things progressed from Season Two, her presence made a difference.

I especially like how you chronicle the way Spike started falling for Winnie. It all seems so natural and sweet; just liking her for her; for her smile, for her laugh, for her effortless beauty... all her attributes he comes to love about her really come through here, and none of it feels forced or cliched.

One paragraph that stands out for me in particular:

"That's the job. They both knew that going in." He clears his throat again. "Guess they figure that it's worth it, Winnie. You know?" He wonders about that sometimes, how Sam and Jules could just know the way they seem to, so sure about them that they both risked everything. Wonders if he'll ever feel what that's like, that there's something bigger than just him.

After Winnie's initial rejection, based on whatever underlying fears *she* might have had about the risks of dating a cop, it's obvious Spike hoped he still had a chance. It was all a matter of convincing her that all the stuff that comes with the job was irrelevant because love is supposed to be stronger than fear.

Okay, I've babbled on enough about chapter 1...

Chapter 2 was equally powerful with the sort of lines like Winnie confessing to being glad it wasn't Spike who was killed That Day, and wondering if that makes her a terrible person. And Spike replying that he was glad she was behind the desk and out of danger.

Backtracking a little to Spike expressing how grateful and thankful he was to have Winnie's voice in his ear the whole time, and how she said *his* name... that was rather beautiful. At a moment when he was about to fall apart after having lost another friend to a bomb (of *course* he'd be re-living what happened to Lewis right then!), having Winnie's voice must have been the best balm for his weary soul.

What you're doing so effectively with these lines is conveying how two colleagues move from professional co-workers to good friends to what we saw in the finale, which we all know amounts to romantic partners.

On to chapter 3...
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