A/N: For hopeful reasons, Collision is coming down after it first went up twelve years ago and there are not enough thanks, virtual cookies, hugs, bottles of Tabasco sauce or slices of chocolate cake to everyone who's read it. Especially the ones at the beginning, waiting chapter to chapter, the ones who reread it.
I've grown from the teenager bashing it out on a family computer that didn't have spell check, or grammar processing, but had the functionality so I could lock my folder. Those days are long gone and this too is now a relic.
Sort of anyway, if we've learned anything from endless reboots, it's that nothing is ever really put out to pasture. I began publishing the reboot somewhere around 2014, after I had pieced myself back together enough to write again after the heartbreak of the much changed original version's publisher going bankrupt while it was under option.
Nevertheless, crow found a shiny pen, picked it up and pecked out words until she would be brave enough to try again.
Or in this case. For somebody to wind up with one of the self published original book versions she'd given an ex boyfriend as a gift. She bought a box of things he was selling and thought it was a real book. Read it, liked it and tried to find the next part in the trilogy. Real names lead to real people, her to me and the reboot became a different rewrite in renewed exuberance (already all done). So this is gone on Monday evening.
In that cheerful, hopeful spirit it doesn't meet the same fate. Let's hope for another revisit to the beginning of something special. Baron and Toluca, Honey and tea. So, I'll pop on my beekeeper suit to avoid getting stung.
TL;DR Collision is getting ripped down, everywhere Monday evening. Final epilogue isn't one, just a beginning for B+T, honey and tea. Want a copy? PM me or one of your Roswell admins on a few sites. It's saved, I promise! Want to see the beginnings of writing with my proper name? see above.
Sometimes it has to start at an ending. At the fiery implosion of two hearts that had collided into one, tearing back into two people. Specifically, back into two separate people with hearts, which now looked far more like a motel room left in shambles. Time passed, the abandoned room on a highway she no longer drove sat in Toluca's chest. It got dusty, grew cobwebs and lingered like a relic even as she became used to exploring shiny new hotels with bells and whistles she hadn't known before. There was more traditional romancing, more flowers given, gifs from a magazine recommendation lists, but she wasn't the girl those lists had in mind.
Toluca truly hated hotels, they were impersonal and boring. Nothing to distinguish themselves from the rest of replicated rooms she checked in and out of for work. It wasn't the cheap shampoo that she found lacking, or the fuzzy tvs, it was something else.
There was nobody to tell her to lock the door, so she didn't.
It was one of the perils of being a terrible romantic at heart. When her room got barged into she thought she was ready, had years worth of witty comebacks from imagining this exact moment. Miles under her belt, he didn't even stand a chance.
It wasn't him, but she knew he was going to be royally pissed when she found him.
So Toluca got back on the highway and headed for home for the first time in a long time.
Baron was extraordinary, that much hadn't changed.
Except for a bit, he was now extraordinary at channeling a remarkable amount of fury without petulance. After the first short outburst at least.
It didn't seem like much, but it was something he'd grown into in their time apart. The drive had shown he could still get a rise out of her, but it was achingly familiar and startlingly new. He was different. She was different. It felt like a lifetime had passed between their last meeting, no hints to what foundations, if any, were too deep to be discovered intact if she ever decided to become an archeologist or an anthropologist. If the second even applied in this case.
At least it was what the calming portion of her brain said, the little logical voice that sounded like a dead far too young friend. Her other best hometown friend occasionally and Toluca's fingers itched to call her as she turned into the parking lot. Baron looked at the door, "Seriously?"
"You can go in the front door if you want." She was too tense to be amused at the rude look he gave her as she unlocked the employee entrance. Baron was persona non grata in the town these days. Like everything else in their tourist trap of youth, the break room hadn't changed much besides a newer couch.
He looked around at the familiar space from the now peeling stickers indicating her spot like a beacon, "You've still got a locker?"
"So do you. Never bothered to clean it out and they couldn't get it open." He smirked in response, heading directly for it. Toluca waited as he spinned the lock, she knew both the combination and what he would find.
She hadn't been able to open the letters spilling out, empty honey jar along with it, nor the letters brought to her hotel room. Baron gave her alarmed look over his shoulder, tearing at one. It opened and what he saw prompted him to immediately start turning the numbers for her lock. His intensity was filling the room, only leaving enough space for him to utter a curse at the stickiness of her old locker.
It was there again, a message wrapped around a honey bear. The baffling clue that kept reappearing, replaced even if the locker was closed for a second. Nobody knew how long it had been happening, when exactly her old locker turned into a time capsule. Abandoned by those who'd been assigned it after, chocked up to a broken lock, until a recent hire, new to town and eager to take her managing job seriously had gotten it open. A new hire who cared enough, or knew people who did, to have Toluca hunted down.
He opened his mouth and she gave him an understanding look, equally as fierce. "Before you start badgering me with questions, we should-"
"Not here." He hissed it and her stomach growled in response, she'd waited long enough. He could wait through at least lunch.
The look in his eyes said maybe not.
A/N: Drop a review or send me a PM for anything else :)