When I was little, before the age of cellphones, my family would go to train shows and inevitably get split up. There would come a time when messages needed to be exchanged, plans made, and I was the chosen informant: short, fast, with a real love of darting between people and objects, hunting through thousands of strangers with only a vague idea where to look for the one person I was in charge of finding. I didn’t knock things over or break anything; I dodged slow-moving oldsters laden with packages as adeptly as squalling toddlers and fur-bedecked doll collectors with dollar signs in their eyes.
Writing this fic feels like dodging through those crowds, except I’m dodging scenes that have already been written, and written beautifully, and which I don’t want to alter or fuck up in any way. Except insofar as I want to use the information gleaned in those scenes to inform those that weren’t, essentially, canonical. And it’s hard! Because there are some moments that were just perfect, as we encounter them in the game, and I have to find a way around them because I want to leave them there. But I still have to reference them because we need to know they have happened. And even if I manage to do that, I am still left in the awkward position of knowing, as everyone else does, that this amazing thing just happened that we didn’t see, and I’m supposed to follow that act with something attempting to be, comparatively, somewhat riveting and/or moving.
Plus there is the added threat–the added obstacle on the frantic ducking, dodging path–of falling down the fandom rabbit hole. The bad kind of rabbit hole, I mean, fraught with internal strife. Not the good kind filled with delicious fanart. Mmm. I have no qualms with those. In the immortal words of Tito:
Even with the pitfalls though, and the amount of time I spend sitting next to this Christmas tree typing instead of, I don’t know, knocking back eggnog out of a glass mug shaped like a moose head, it is so. much. fun.