Spinning Her Wheels

God. Look at him rippling.

She puffed as she peddled, the beat of the music mixing with the throb in her butt cheeks.

He yelled empowering words, leaning forward on his handlebars, causing his shorts to ride up his muscular thighs.

Those legs. My god.

She caught his eye and he smiled.

She peddled harder while his gaze was on her, hoping she looked okay in her new leopard print shorts. Trying to make it all appear effortless. It wasn’t.

Sera had been working out at Soul Cycle ever since the day she met Chris. She had locked herself out of her apartment and was on the street waiting for a locksmith to arrive, when Chris walked by. He stopped to ask if she was okay. She answered yes and made an awkward joke about what an idiot she was. He tossed his head back and laughed, before saying, “We’ve all done it,” and smiling so bright, Sera nearly gasped.
He asked if he could wait with her and reached into his satchel, pulling out a bag of red liquorice vines. She said, that would be fine, and peeled a vine from the pack, holding it between her fingers, too shy to eat it. He placed a vine between his lips and Sera watched him twirl it, moving it in and out, as they chatted about the weather, and the oppressive summer heat. When help finally arrived, Chris handed Sera a card and invited her to, “Try me out.” He meant his spin class. Sera hoped he meant something else. Four weeks later, and she was the fittest she had ever been in her life.

For Sera, every day revolved around the heart pounding hour she spent with Chris. Hot and sweaty. Grinding. Pumping. Up and down. Bodies glistening. Moving as one.
She arrived at the studio early to make sure she was always in the front row. She remembered the tracks he played and downloaded them, so she could learn the words and sing along. She made a mental note of every moment with him. Every shoulder-squeeze. Every wink. She told herself each day would be the day he would ask her out. And each day, she went home disappointed.

“Great work, guys,” Chris yelled, when the class was over, and everyone was packing up.

Sera slowly pulled her gear together, taking her time, hoping to be the last to leave. She felt her stomach flip as Chris approached.

“You’re looking great, Sera.”

She blushed through her already beet red face. “All because of you, Chris.”

He smiled his bright smile.

“Um. Chris?”

I’m going to do it. I’m going to ask him out.

He looked down at her, his sandy blonde hair hanging in his too blue eyes. “Yeah?”

“Um…um…” She sighed. “See you tomorrow?”

“You know you will!” and he squeezed her shoulder and winked.

Sera picked up her bag and hobbled out the door. Every part of her ached.

But mostly… her heart.

© Amy Hutton 2020

Killing Christmas

Celeste stuck the last bow on the last gift with a satisfied sigh. She had promised to be more Christmassy this year. Put up decorations. Buy presents not vouchers. Send cards not texts. She even went to the post office for Christ’s sake. Like it was 1985 or something!

Pouring herself another wine, she proudly surveyed the room. It looked like a Christmas warehouse had thrown up all over the place, leaving sparkly puke dripping off every surface. Checking her phone, she was shocked to see it was nearly midnight. She had to get up in six hours to put a damn turkey in the oven. Why had she agreed to do the family lunch? Because she was being Christmassy! She was surprised when she wobbled a bit as she lifted herself off the chair. She’d downed a whole bottle of red without noticing. Probably be hungover tomorrow. As she stumbled to bed, she pictured her sister rolling her eyes.

Celeste woke with a start. She was parched. Like a desert had decided to take over her mouth. She was reaching for the glass of water beside her bed, when she heard a noise below her. A bump. Her arm froze mid-stretch. Another noise. Was that a jingle?

She fumbled around for her phone. It wasn’t there. She cursed herself. Another noise. This time a dragging sound. Celeste sat bolt upright. Someone was in her house. Worse still, someone was stealing the presents from under her tree. The one’s she’d battled the Christmas crowds at the shopping mall for. Fuck that!

She silently rolled out of bed and tiptoed to her wardrobe. Groping around in the dark, she found a metal box, opened it and removed a small pistol. She bought the gun last summer after a spate of home invasions. At the time she wondered if it was an over reaction, but as she heard another sound from the floor below, she was suddenly glad she had it.

As quietly as possible, she stepped onto the pitch-black landing. Then onto the stairs, one hand grasping the banister, the other the gun. Her heart was pounding in her chest. Her hands, trembling. As she reached the final step she froze. There was the hulking shape of a man crouched in front of her Christmas tree, backlit by the fairy lights she’d failed to turn off. Celeste panicked. She stumbled backwards, accidentally squeezing the trigger as she fell. A shot rang out. A wisp of smoke sizzled into the air. She heard an “ooff”, followed by a groan, then a thud, then silence.

Celeste pushed herself up and carefully felt her way around the wall to the light switch, flicking it on with a click. A large sack lay beside the fireplace, brightly wrapped boxes spewing across the rug. A smear of blood trailed from the tree to the the sofa. A pair of black boots poked out from behind it. Shiny. Black. Boots.

The gun dropped from Celeste’s hand hitting the floor with a clunk. Her knees buckled, and she landed heavily beside it. She gaped at the grisly scene in front of her. Behind her sofa, eyes open but unseeing, blood splatter staining his snow-white beard, was a very dead, very fat man. In a red suit.

Well fuck, she said, as she hoisted herself up off the floor. After all shopping. After all the decorating. After all the work she put in to making Christmas perfect, what does she go and do?

She kills Santa.

Typical.

© Amy Hutton 2020

Crime and Sacrifice – A Flash Fiction

Five bodies lay sprawled across the small auditorium stage. The rest were slumped inelegantly in their seats. Senior Detective Wesson did a rough count. He figured there was twenty plus people in the room. Twenty plus very dead people. He pulled on his gloves with a sigh, and made his way towards Remington, who he nicknamed Steele, even though Remington was too young to get the joke.

“What’s the story, Steele?”

“Twenty-three people deceased. Cause unknown.”

“A mystery! That should be right up your alley.” Wesson slapped Remington on the back. “By the way, how’s the book coming?”

“Slowly,” Remington said, picking up a water bottle. He unscrewed the lid and put the bottle to his nose.

“What are you looking for? Poison? You’ve read too much Agatha Christie.”

“Poison, or airborne,” Remington said, ignoring the jibe. “Something killed these people, and it was either ingested, or inhaled.” He replaced the lid and carefully repositioned the bottle on the fold-out table attached to the arm of the chair.

Wesson surveyed the crime scene. He hated a mystery. Never understood why people read them. He liked things cut and dried. Questions led to more questions, which led to long nights, and he was too old for long nights. “Where’s the person in charge?” he said. His mood already beginning to colour his voice.

“Over there. The one with puke on his shoes.”

***

Wesson walked towards the gentlemen with the puked-on shoes, who was sitting by the door with a paramedic crouched at his feet.

“You in charge here?” Wesson said. His mood already making him brusque. “Up for some questions?”

The man wiped a handkerchief across his face camouflaging a sob. “I’m not sure what I can tell you?” he said.

“Let’s start with why they were here.”

“For a writing workshop. True crime”

Wesson stifled a laugh. “Well there’s some irony for you,” he muttered. “Hey, Steele,” he called to the younger man, “You should include this one in your book! A silver lining, yes?” He nodded enthusiastically.

***

Remington gave Wesson a tight smile. He hated Wesson. The moron. The man had never opened a book in his life. Remington was sure of it.

He cast an eye around the room. Twenty-three bodies with no obvious cause of death. The press will have a field day, he thought. He could see the headlines now. “The True Crime Murder Mystery.” He’d make sure to drop that line in the interviews he was bound to do. Then naturally, that would become the title of his book. His best-selling book. He smiled to himself at the genius of it all. Write a brilliant true crime story, and then turn that story into a reality. All it took was a little research and a dab of poison on a heating grate. He’d have to wait a while before he could publish, of course. He wouldn’t want to raise suspicions. But he should have the book on the shelves by Christmas. Then there would be the television appearances. The podcasts. Fame and fortune were in his grasp. And all he had to do was kill a few people. Well, twenty-three people.

But then, doesn’t all good writing require sacrifice?

© Amy Hutton 2020

The World of Wikis

yellow pikachu plushmascot
Photo by mentatdgt on Pexels.com

So, you sit down to watch the new season of The Walking Dead, you wish you’d had time to do that rewatch of last season like you meant to do, but oh well, you’ll be fine, after-all, you love this show! Then suddenly, you’re confused because there’s a guy saying stuff about a thing and you know you should know who he is, but you just can’t place him. Is he from The Kingdom? Or was he a Saviour? Was he even in last season? You’re sure you’ve seen him before but…WHO IS THAT GUY?!

Never fear, the wiki is here!

Wiki’s have become a stable in the lives of fans. A central encyclopaedic housing of information about television shows, movies, gaming, book series, anime and even entertainment brands. A wiki is a free, collaborative space that brings together detailed knowledge, and passion under one umbrella of awesome.

A wiki can feature anything from episode breakdowns and transcripts, to cast and character biographies. They explore the canon and lore of the Universe they’re dedicated to, and catalogue weapons, vehicles, animals, music, and some even document fan life and fan projects.

But with so much information to cover, what makes a good wiki, and what does it take to manage a wiki and ensure it remains relevant.

A good example is Supernaturalwiki, which went live in August 2006, just shy of a year after the TV show premiered. It is an independent wiki, that is not-for-profit and ad-free. With over 3700 entries, and around 40,000 visitors a month, the Supernaturalwiki, AKA SuperWiki, is not just a source for fans worldwide, it is also used by the media, and the people who produce Supernatural including the writers, production crew and cast.

With over 2000 users having contributed to the site, Managing Editor, Jules Wilkinson knows that a good wiki must not just be accurate, it must also be detailed, well-organised, and importantly, up to date.

“Keeping the site current is a challenge,” Jules says. “As people can choose to contribute what they contribute and when, so a particular entry or category may languish as editors change. We do have an organised roster for completing episode recaps and transcripts, in order to ensure they are updated soon after an episode is broadcast.”

Part of Jules’ role is to support new contributors, helping them to learn how to code, and understand the Wiki conventions and helping them get the most out of their involvement. In any given week there are usually around 20 people actively working on the SuperWiki, all adding their own perspective and talent to it, whether that’s copy editing, or contributing their expertise on Egyptian mythology or Simpsons references.

For Jules, “Being an editor should be creative and enjoyable and people should feel they can make their mark on the site. I review edits for accuracy and appropriateness and identify areas of the SuperWiki which need updating. We have always been a very harmonious site,” she adds. “It’s only very rarely there will be conflict over some interpretation of canon.”

What makes the SuperWiki unique though, is that it documents the Supernatural fandom alongside the show. It not only covers what happens on the show, it covers behind the scenes, conventions, charity projects, fan fiction, shipping and other creative fan endeavours whether it’s a cookbook or a podcast.

“These aspects are not kept separate,” Jules says. “For example, you can read an entry about the character Jack Kline on the show and follow links to the JackLovesNougat roleplaying account on Twitter.”

Another thriving wiki site is Fandom, an international entertainment company and the home of wiki pages formerly housed by Wikia. It is a free of charge and for-profit site, which currently hosts several thousand wikis in all different languages.

Like Jules from the Supernaturalwiki, Fandom’s Managing Editor of Australia, Jeremy Ray believes in the importance of keeping a wiki current and ensuring its accuracy.

“I love it when a wiki is very up-to-date,” says Jeremy. “And of course, accuracy is very important. It’s very helpful to know when you can reliably check a wiki for the contents of the latest weapon crate in CS:GO, or to find out all about the new Overwatch character.”

At Fandom the larger wiki admin teams function somewhat like mini-governments. They meet regularly and vote on policy decisions, manage and assist newer members, and moderate contributions from the public, liaising with the content team as necessary.

Primarily the wiki admins own their space at Fandom, if they feel rumours, guides, tips, etc have a place within that space, then that’s their prerogative. Though some prefer to keep their spaces for lore only.

“Like our Wookiepiedia,” Jeremy says. “Which refers to the events of Star Wars as if it’s actual history.”

One of the complex issues a wiki editor may face is where there are multiple entries for the same character, or brand. For example, on the SuperWiki, if there are alternate reality characters do you house their information on the original version of that character’s page, or do they have their own page, because in essence they are their own character, even though they share a character name and actor. Or at Fandom when you have a character/brand overlap, which means there’s a Mario page on the Nintendo wiki, the Mario wiki, and the Smash Bros wiki. This is why structure and organisation are so important. A fan is not going to use a wiki that is difficult to navigate, so part of the editing and management of a wiki is discussing and dealing with these types of issues, to ensure the fan experience is protected.

“We try to assist in those situations,” Jeremy says. “To make sure the content can easily be found by both the user and Google.”

Jules adds, “There is on-going discussion with editors about whether it is better to have one large entry on a topic or several smaller pages and how to catalogue something within the site so people can find the information. Accessibility also includes ensuring images are properly captioned for those with visual impairments.”

 Both Jules and Jeremy agree this teamwork is vital in running a wiki as it’s simply too much work for one person to handle, but more importantly that wikis would not function without the support of the fans who have helped to grow and develop them.

“We fund our web hosting and tech support costs through donations,” says Jules

A wiki is there to empower fans to dig deeper into the thing they love and follow their passion by contributing their own knowledge and unique set of skills to the larger community. The people who build and shape the wiki pages dedicate thousands of hours to ensure that the latest information is available when someone needs to check an item of lore in Final Fantasy or find out how many times the Winchester brothers hugged in season 14. Fans can build their own wikis, create their own spaces, contribute entries that reflect their own particular interests, or simply explore the thousands and thousands of pages of information about that thing they love by people who love it too.

“It might be cheesy,” Jeremy concludes. “But we had an old motto that was to “help fans be better fans,” and I think that sums it up.”

So, next time you can’t remember who that character is, or you need to know how you kill a Leviathan or get a detailed family tree of the Great Houses of Game of Thrones, check out a wiki! They’re the ultimate in fans giving back to fans.

Thanks to the SuperWiki and Fandom for their help with this article
and to the fans for all the work they do.
Follow on Twitter - SuperWiki @SuperWiki and Fandom @getFANDOM

© Amy Hutton 2019

 

 

The Happiest Place: A Supernatural Fan Fiction

“I’m not wearing them, Sam!”

“Dean, you’ve gotta wear them! It’s kinda the rules.”

It was the Winchester brothers’ second day on the road, and they’d been bickering pretty much the whole time.

“You know, we’re going within spitting distance of Vegas. We should go to Vegas,” Dean said.

“We’ve done Vegas this year. You said you were up for something new.”

“Yeah, new like, some beach resort with cocktails with those little umbrellas. Or, I don’t know, Reno.”

“Just think of this as Reno with rides,” Sam said, looking down at his phone.

“Pretty sure they’ve got rides in Reno,” Dean grumbled.

“Well then, more rides. Do you need to take a break, you seem tense.”

“I’m not tense Sam, and no I don’t need a break, I’m just… I’m not wearing them.”

Dean reached for the radio and turned up the volume.

Sam shook his head, conversation over.

 

“Where do we park?” Dean asked.

“I’m just figuring that out, we want the one closest.”

“It’s early, we should go get a burger or something first.”

“No, we can eat there, the earlier we get there, the less crowds.”

“Great. Crowds,” Dean groaned.

Sam sighed. “I swear Dean, you’re gunna have a good time.”

Dean humphed.

“Okay, take the next left, that’s the best place to park. The Mickey and Friends carpark.”

Dean shook his head and gunned it, laying a bit of rubber on the road just for appearances.

 

“Jesus, there’s more security here than the bunker! Hey, maybe we should install metal detectors at the bunker door.”

“Not a bad idea,” Sam said.

“I was kidding, Sam.”

“Still not a bad idea.”

They headed to the no bag check lane.

“Empty your pockets into the bowl please gentlemen, and walk through,” the ever so perky woman, who was apparently named Mabel, said.

“You left your weapons in the car, right?” Sam whispered, wondering if Dean had packed the demon killing knife or his Colt 1911, just in case.

“I’m not an idiot, Sam.” Dean dropped his wallet and Impala keys in the bowl. “I don’t like going in naked though,” he said over his shoulder, before throwing Mabel an awkward smile. Mabel didn’t even flinch, her badge said 27 years of service, she’d heard it all.

 

Dean went through the metal detector and the alarm went off.

“Anything in your pockets, sir?”

“No”

“Belt?”

“No”

“Over there, please.” The security guard motioned Dean in the direction of a guard with a hand held sensor.

“Arms up, sir.”

Dean rolled his eyes and lifted his arms. The guard scanned Dean.

“Hey Sam,” Dean said. “Maybe we can make one of these that scans for monsters!” He looked at the guard who ignored him.

The scanner alarm went off over Dean’s boots.

“Steel caps,” Dean said.

“I’m going to need to pat you down, sir.”

“Are you going to buy me dinner after?”

The security guard looked up at Dean, definitely not smiling.

“Just kidding, dude.” Dean mumbled, as the guard patted down Dean’s legs and socks.

“Okay sir enjoy your day at the park. Oh, and about that dinner?”

Dean froze.

“Just kidding, dude,” the security guard said sarcastically, as he turned to help the next customer.

“Way to make friends, Dean,” Sam whispered. “Let’s get on the tram.”

“The tram….” Dean felt like his day was going from bad to worse.

 

“Did you download the app like I told you?” Sam said as they stood in the queue at the gates.

“Yes, mom.”

“So, you’ve got your ticket up?”

“Yes, mom.”

“Just checking,” Sam sighed.

Dean got to the turnstile.

“Scan your ticket hon, and then smile here,” the woman at the gate said. Her name was Shirley and she’d given 16 years of service.

“You’re taking our photos? How come?” Dean asked.

“So you can go in and out of the park,” Shirley explained. “You okay having your photo taken sweetie? You’re not a vampire or anything are you?” she winked at Dean.

“Not currently,” Dean said, winking back. “But you never know what’s around the corner.” He gave her his best smile and walked through the turnstile.

There in front of him was a huge Mickey Mouse face made out of flowers.

 

“Welcome to Disneyland!” Sam said, slapping Dean on the back so hard Dean stumbled. “What do you want to do first?”

Dean threw his arms in the air. “Your show, man. You pick.”  He gazed around in astonishment at the throng of people and prams making their way into the park.

Sam looked at his phone. “How about Indiana Jones?”

Dean turned to look at his brother. “Indiana Jones has a ride?”

“Did you even look at the app?”

“No.”

 

The brothers walked under the arch and into the park, heading toward Main Street, U.S.A.

“What’s happening over there?” Dean pointed to a small crowd of people.

“It’s Mickey Mouse!” Sam had a touch too much excitement in his voice. “Do you wanna get a photo with him?” he said before thinking.

Dean stared at his brother like he was from another planet. “Ah, no Sam, I don’t.” Then he remembered something. He remembered back to when they were kids, to when Sam had Mickey Mouse pyjamas. He remembered being in the back of the car, his dad driving them…somewhere, Sam was in his Mickey pyjamas bugging the hell out of their dad to take them to Disneyland. Sam had looked it up on the map and knew where they were heading wasn’t too far away from where the park was located. He went on and on and on about it, until their dad finally promised he’d take them another time. Of course, another time never came. They grew up; they hunted. Why had Dean not remembered that before now? Sam used to love Mickey Mouse. Sam had always wanted to visit Disneyland.

 

Dean stopped walking and grabbed his brother’s arm. “Wait. Do you want to get a photo with Mickey Mouse?”

Sam rolled his eyes. “No Dean. Ha ha. I was just joking.”

“Well, I’m serious, dude. Do you? Because I remember… I mean, you know…it’s cool if you do…”

Sam looked at his brother, and then turned back to look at the crowd. “Um,” he paused, looking at Dean again. “Nah, let’s head to the ride before it gets busy.”

 

“This is pretty cool,” Dean said as they walked through the tunnels on their way to the Indiana Jones ride. “I mean, the detail. Pretty cool.”

“Yeah it is,” Sam said, pushing on a pole and hearing the noise of rocks falling.

They got to the area with the safety video.

“What kind of ride is this?” Dean asked.

“Like the movie. Not a rollercoaster, I think we’re in a jeep.”

“I get to drive.” Dean said.

“I don’t think anyone gets to drive, Dean. It’ll be on a track.” Sam said as they moved forward in the line.

They followed the directions and headed into another room, where they could now see the ride vehicles.

“There’s a steering wheel, Sam, so I drive.”

“It depends if we’re in the front or not,” Sam tried to explain as they walked up the stairs and down the other side.

“How many?” the ride attendant asked.

“Two,” said Dean. “And I want to drive.”

“Number one,” the attendant said pointing them to the row at the front.

Dean looked at Sam and elbowed him in the ribs with a, see, expression.

 

When it was their turn, the gates opened, and Sam and Dean got into the jeep, sliding across to their spots.

Dean put his hands firmly on the wheel. “Dude are you even going to fit?” he said, watching Sam fold himself into the seat.

“I’ll fit,” Sam said, arranging his legs and trying not to bump the lady next to him.

“Please secure your belt,” the attendant called out. The brothers secured their belts.

“Pull on the yellow tab for me,” the attendant called. The brothers pulled on the yellow tab.

After a few moments the car started moving. “Here we go!” Dean said with a little too much enthusiasm, as they headed into the darkness of the tunnel…

 

“Dude!” Dean said, slapping his brother on the arm. “That was freakin’ amazing! We gotta go on that again!”

They’d finished the ride and were heading out the exit.

Sam laughed. “Yeah, it was pretty cool. Maybe we’ll try and get on again later.”

“Maybe? I’d say definitely!” Dean turned to look at Sam. “What’s next?”

“Well, Pirates of the Caribbean is just there, or the Haunted Mansion?”

“Haunted Mansion? Seriously? That’s our life. I think we can skip that one.”

“It’s supposed to be pretty great.”

“Dude, I do not need a ride with ghosts! We’ll go on the Pirate one.”

“Okay, but I still think we should do the Haunted Mansion, I mean, it’s one of the original rides and, you know, has great history, and…”

“Okay, okay. Geeze. Pirates first, then ghosts. I can’t believe what I’m even saying…”

 

Sam and Dean walked off the Pirates of the Caribbean ride beaming.

“Yeah, okay, that was awesome,” Dean said. “I’ve got a wet ass, but it was awesome,”

Sam laughed.

“That Johnny Depp robot really looked like the guy,” Dean continued talking as they wandered towards the Haunted Mansion. “Not sure I’m ever gunna get that song out of my head though. Was that in the movie?”

“Yeah I think so,” Sam said looking at the Disneyland app. “Okay, there’s not too much of a wait today, which is great, so let’s go do the Haunted Mansion then after that our Fast Pass for Space Mountain should be ready.”

“Okay, tour guide,” Dean said, getting into the spirit of the day. “Lead on!”

 

Sam and Dean squeezed into one of the Haunted Mansion’s little round Doom Buggies as it moved along the track.

“Man, they do not make these rides for large humans,” Dean grumbled as he adjusted himself.

“No kidding,” Sam said, slouching down a bit to fit in.

Their Doom Buggy travelled through the corridor of knocking doors, past Madam Leota’s floating head and into the ballroom where all the ghosts were dancing and having a feast.

“Holy crap!” Dean laughed. “Where the hell is my salt gun when I need it!”

“It wouldn’t be so bad if the ghosts we dealt with were all like this,” Sam yelled over the music.

 

The brothers laughed and pointed at pretty much everything as they travelled through the ride.

“Whoa check out that skinny dog,” Dean said, as they moved backwards under some creepy trees.

“Oh my god, it’s the singing heads!” Sam yelled, nearly jumping out of the Buggy with excitement.

“Look at that guy!” Dean laughed, pointing at a skeleton popping up and down out of a grave.

 

As they came to the end of the ride they heard the narrator say, “There’s a little matter I forgot to mention — beware of hitchhiking ghosts!” Then the boys’ Doom Buggy swung around to face the mirror and squeezed between them was a fat ghost in a top hat.

“I’d pick another car if I was you, dude!” Dean yelled at the mirror.

Sam and Dean cracked up.

 

“Oh man,” Dean said as they stumbled back into the light. “That was ridiculous! We might have to go on that one again too!”

“At this rate, we’ll need to be here another day,” Sam said, shooting his brother a sideways glance.

Dean shrugged his shoulders, before suddenly yelling, “CHURROS!”

 

Sam and Dean walked across the park eating their foot long churros and enjoying the sunny day.

“So, Space Mountain?” Sam asked.

“Sure, what is it again?” Dean said, round a mouthful of sugary dough.

“It’s a rollercoaster…err…in…side.”

Dean stopped. “Like…. how high a rollercoaster?”

“It’s in a building, so not very high.”

Dean nodded. “Okay. As long as it’s not one of those 20 million foot drop coasters.”

“Definitely not 20 million foot drop coaster.”

“Okay. Cool.”

 

“THAT WAS NOT COOL!” Dean spluttered as he stomped his way out of Space Mountain.

“Wait,” Sam said. “There’ll be a photo!” Sam was loving his big brother being freaked out just a little too much.

“Dude. I do not want to see what I look like screaming IN THE DARK!” Dean said.

Sam laughed. “Come on, Dean. It was fun!”

“Flying through the dark at a trillion miles an hour, is not my idea of fun, Sam!”

“Okay, okay.” Sam laughed again. “Hey look! There we are!” Sam pointed to a photo on one of the screens.

“Oh good. I’m screaming like an infant.” Dean shook his head.

Sam slapped Dean on the back. “Never mind Dean, I look cool.” In the photo, Sam had his arms in the air and was grinning from ear to ear.

“Yeah, you look freakin’ great. Can we go now? What’s next? And NO MORE ROLLERCOASTERS IN THE GOD DAMN DARK!”

 

The brothers went from ride to ride. Debated whether to build their own lightsabre, fought over who was the best shot on Buzz Lightyear, ate an ice cream sandwich in the shape of Mickey’s head and laughed out loud at the bad jokes on the Jungle Cruise. They braved The Matterhorn and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, though Dean gave an emphatic nope to Splash Mountain. They folded themselves into the tiny seats on Finding Nemo and pretended to race each other on Autopia. They even went back for a second ride on the Haunted Mansion, and giggled all the way around.

 

When the fireworks started, they sat on the edge of the gutter lining the road and looked up at the sky, as the coloured lights exploded in a shower of stars above their heads.

 

Heading back down Main Street, U.S.A., tired and achy from a long day, they compared their favourite moments. From Star Tours, to Mr Toad, to how damn delicious Dole Whip is. Dean even laughed at the photo of him screaming on Space Mountain (though he swore he’d never go on that hellish ride again).

 

As they neared the exit, Dean excused himself to use the restroom.

“Just wait here,” he said to Sam.

“Okay, mom.” Sam said shaking his head.

When his brother returned, he was carrying a bag.

“You went shopping in the restroom?” Sam asked, pointing at the Disneyland bag in Dean’s hand.

“No, but I just thought I’d grab a souvenir, you know…,” he trailed off.

“What cha ya get?” Sam asked, reaching for the bag.

“None of your business,” Dean said, swatting Sam’s hand. “By the way,” Dean deftly changed the subject. “The woman in the shop told me that Mickey Mouse should be down near the exit, if you wanna get a photo…”

Sam looked at Dean. “Nah. I mean. Nahhh.”

Dean rolled his eyes. “Dude, we’ve come all this way, we might as well do it. Admit that you like the Mouse, so we can all move on.”

“Well, I guess we can see how long the line is?” Sam said as they walked towards a small crowd.

 

The brothers stood in the queue, conspicuously large compared to the mostly mums and kids on either side of them. When they got to the front, Mickey Mouse opened his arms and Dean shoved Sam towards him.

Sam spun around. “Dude! “You’re coming in the photo too!”

“Hold your horses,” Dean said. He handed his phone to the young woman helping to take pictures, put down the Disneyland bag, and pulled out two pairs of Mickey ears. “Here you go, Sammy,” Dean said, placing the ears on Sam’s head. Sam’s mouth hung agape. Dean then put the second set of ears on his own head, angling them jauntily. He looked at the young woman with his phone. “How do I look?” he asked with a smirk.

“Surprisingly good,” the young woman replied.

“I thought you’d never wear them, Dean,” Sam said over Mickey’s head.

Dean just shrugged. “Okay, Mickey,” he said. “Let’s do this.” Dean reached his arm around Mickey Mouse and placed his hand on his brother’s shoulder.

 

Sam and Dean both shrunk down so they didn’t tower over the diminutive mouse and smiled as their photo was taken.

“You know,” Dean said to Mickey Mouse, as he stepped aside. “My brother there, he’s a bit of a fan.”

Sam started to stammer something but before he could get far, Mickey had him in a hug.

Dean laughed, “There you go, Sammy.”

 

Sam and Dean dropped into the Impala with a groan. “Jesus,” Dean said. “That was exhausting. But I’ve got to say, it was a pretty awesome day.”

“So, you like Disneyland now,” Sam said.

“I did not hate it.” Dean started up the car. “Let’s see if we can find a cheap motel around here somewhere…or maybe we should crack out the cards and live it up a little!”

Sam yawned. “I don’t care, as long as it has a hot shower and beds!”

Dean nodded. “Amen to that.”

 

As Dean drove out of the carpark, and down Disneyland Drive, he turned to his brother, “You know, there’s nothing much on the radar at the moment, and I hear the other park has some cool rides too, and beer, they have beer. Maybe we should, I dunno, check it out tomorrow?”

“You want to do another day at Disneyland?”

“Well, I mean, we’re already here.”

“You think you’re up for the Guardians of the Galaxy ride?”

“Star Lord? Hells yeah! Bring it on! Wait. It isn’t a rollercoaster in the dark, is it?”

“Nope.”

“All right then!”

“You ever going to take those ears off, Dean?”

“Probably not.”

“You’re going to sleep in them?”

“Maybe.”

“You can get another set tomorrow.”

“Do they have Star Lord ones?”

“They’ve got Star Wars ones.”

“Yeah? What are you going to get, Little Mermaid?”

“Ha ha Dean, maybe you should get Goofy. Or Princess Jasmine.”

“Okay. All right. You stick with the princess ears, Rapunzel”

“Ha ha very funny.”

“Well you’ve got the hair for it….”

 

   © Amy Hutton 2019
   Story by Amy Hutton based on characters created by Eric Kripke.
   More Supernatural Fan fiction by Amy can be found here