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Baby, you can Drive my Car

Chapter Text

The silence was straining. The atmosphere was thick, you could've cut through it like a knife. Angry emotions and hurt feelings only filled the air. Just a few moments ago, it seemed like hell had broken loose in McQueen’s home. There was loud shouting that probably everyone in Radiator Springs could’ve heard. It seemed common now, this had been Sally and Lightning’s 6th fight this week, over something silly, but truly, it was something bigger than a few broken plates. Everything seemed to became deathly quiet until the silence was broken with a sigh.

“I’m done. I’ve had too much,” Sally whispered.

“C’mon Sal, We can always get new dishes!” Lightning said.

“Lightning, this isn’t about broken plates, this is more about broken plates!” Sally yelled, this time, stomping to their room and pulling out a suitcase. Lightning followed her.

Lightning gave her a questionable and worried looked, realizing that she was starting to put her belongings in the suitcase, “What are you talking about?! I don’t understand what you’re trying to say! Sally, you’re overthinking this too much!”

“10 years Lightning! 10 Years!” She says as she gets up from kneeling and walks up to Lightning, her eyes were filled with rage, “I’ve always supported you with your racing, everything! Why couldn’t you give me one thing?” Her voice cracks as Lightning could see tears starting to pool in her eyes.

Lightning frowned and quickly backed down, “I was just.. never ready for us to be more than we are now,” is all he could get out.

“Then I guess you’ll never be ready.”

“Wait! Where are you going? You can’t leave! Sally.. Please, I love you.” Lightning pleaded, grabbing Sally's arm and pulling her towards him.

Sally quickly pulled away and stared at Lightning with sad eyes. She gathered all her things and walked to the door with her suitcase in hand, “I’ve already made my decision, and I think you have too.” She said, as she left through the front door, getting into her car and driving off, leaving Lightning standing outside of the door way, watching her go.

Chapter Text

A few months passed by. Everyone in town had heard of Lightning and Sally’s split-up. Lightning put on a mask around the others, pretending to be his usual self. His friends were worried about him because they knew he wasn’t okay. Even Mater couldn’t cheer him up with his jokes, Lightning laughed at them, but they were dry and spurious. They tried everything but nothing seemed to work. If Doc we’re here, he would’ve told Lightning to stop being a fool and get over it, which probably would’ve worked, but no one seemed to want to confront him about it.

After Lightning had given Cruz Ramirez the chance to race, he acted as her substitute crew chief, until she could find a better pit crew. Lightning planned to go back to racing professionally.

He spent most days on the dirt race-track that was in the town,trying to get his mind off things. Day and night, he tried to get a speed higher than the last one. Lightning knew that his car couldn’t go as fast as the next-generation race cars. Though, he had heard that a well-known mechanic had started working at Lightning’s training centre. He left messages for the racer, telling him he was positive he could make his race car faster, and was pretty persistent about it, but he was all the way in Florida and, he wasn’t too keen about going that far. He wasn't sure he was ready to face other people.

Lightning had just finished a few laps on the dirt race track, realizing it was almost sun-down, the sky turning a bright orange. He’d been there since dawn. His phone suddenly rang, he answered it.

“Hello?”

“Lightning! How ya been?” A man’s voice called through the phone.

Lightning knew who that voice belonged to, “Oh hey Mr. Sterling..” He said, “Do you need something?” He asked.

Ever since Tex had bought the company from Sterling, he acted as a supervisor around the centre, making sure everything was where it needed to be. Lightning forgave Sterling since the whole incident, and there were no hard feelings against each other.
“Yes! I need you Lightning McQueen, to come train in Florida again.. You said you’d race again right? Mr. Anderson had told me that he wanted to fix your car up, and give you a better engine.”

So that was his name. Lightning realized that this guy was serious about wanting to fix his car so up so badly if he was telling Sterling about it. Lightning sighed, “I don’t know Mr. Sterling...”
He was having doubts, since last time he had driven out there, the experience was not what he was expecting and Sterling had tried to get him to quit racing just so he could earn profits off merchandise.

“This time, we’ll give you a schedule, and actually help you get better instead of last time where we treated you like you weren’t a racer. Everyone is being given proper training, a lot of things have changed since you left Lightning.” Sterling affirmed.

Lightning listened intently, he was at a loss of words, his mind was racing and wondered to himself if he really should agree. It was a great offer.

“The next season is coming up pretty soon and you’ll need all the help you can get if you want to continue racing and win those races. Think about it okay Lightning?” And just like that, he hung up the phone, leaving Lightning sitting dumb-founded.

After a while, he drove back to the town and walked over to Luigi and Guido’s car shop, where he could see that they were arguing about something in their language. They saw Lightning walk towards him and stopped to greet him.

“Hello Lightning!” Luigi said, patting him on the back, while Guido simply nodded.
Lightning grinned but then sighed, the two Italians looked at each other, they knew something was up.

“What’s wrong?”

“Oh.. Well, Sterling called me a few moments ago and wanted me to come to Florida for a few months so I could train at my facility... But I just don’t know about that, I haven’t left Radiator Springs since y’know..” His smile faltered, thinking about Sally was hard for him.

“I think that’s a great idea Lightning! You can’t give up this chance! Of course, Guido and I will accompany you!” Luigi exclaimed. practically jumping up and down.

“Really? I just.. don’t know how I feel about it yet,” Lightning groaned, but felt Guido’s arm squeeze his shoulder gently.

“Lightning, sometimes, you just have to move on to start feeling better. This will be good for you, it’ll get your mind off of things.” Guido simply said before walking into the car shop, while Luigi talked to himself about what he planned to bring along to Florida.

Just then, a familiar voice echoed through the air, turning around to see Mater walking over, smiling while he wore his brown cap to cover his auburn hair. “Howdy y’all! what’s going on here? I heard Luigi yelling and wondered if something happened?.” He asked.

Before Lightning could speak, Luigi interrupted him excitedly, “Lightning got a call from Mr. Sterling, and wanted him to come to Florida to train! Guido and I are coming with him!” He couldn’t contain how happy he was.
“Wait! I didn’t agree to anything yet,” Lightning whined.

Mater’s smile brightened, “That’s great! You should do it McQueen! You wanted to race again, and if it makes you feel any better, I’ll join you guys and you can have someone to support you, C’mon buddy, what do you say?” He said, grinning, slapping Lightning’s back, almost toppling him over.

Lightning hesitated for a moment, looking at the two men’s anticipating expressions. He sighed and gave in, “Okay fine. I guess it wouldn’t hurt to try, and there’s this new mechanic that works there, saying he can fix my car up.”

Mater and Luigi cheered, hugging Lightning, they knew that this would help him get back to his regular self. They didn’t want him sulking anymore, racing was Lightning’s passion.
“I guess I'll have to call Sterling about this then,” as he pulled his phone out of his pocket and quickly dialed his number, he immediately picked up.

“So McQueen, I see you’ve changed your mind,” Lightning could practically hear Sterling’s smile through the phone. Lightning chuckled softly before he spoke “Yes, after a lot of convincing by my friends, we’re coming to Florida, just like you asked.”

“Perfect! Just what i’d like to hear, we have an apartment where all the racers are staying while they train that’s near the facility, and I’ve rented you and your teammates an apartment,” Sterling said.
“Wow Mr. Sterling.. You didn’t have to do all of that… I appreciate it, thank you!” Lightning exclaimed before Sterling and him talked for a few more minutes until he hung up.

Mater and Luigi looked at Lightning, they could see that he was genuinely smiling, he looked happy.
“Guess what guys! Mr. Sterling rented us an apartment where we could stay while I train! And he bought us plane tickets to get there, we leave tomorrow!” Lightning said before he paused,
“We gotta pack! We gotta get everything ready! I’ll call Mack so he can drive my race car to Florida!” He said buzzing to do everything. His friends smiled at him as he trailed off.

For the first time in a while, they finally got to see the good old Lightning, carefree and determined. Something they weren’t able to bring out on him for a while. Racing was something Lightning could never dream of living without, he couldn’t possibly turn down this offer.

What he wasn’t expecting that a long journey awaited for him.

Chapter Text

That night, Lightning had packed the basic essentials he would need before heading to Florida. Although, he didn’t worry too much as he could always buy anything he forgot there, so he mostly packed a good amount of clothing.

His friends had all came over to Lightning’s house and they had a little going away party for the four of them. Luigi and Guido insisted they make dinner for all of them, wanting it to be a special celebration. They all talked about what would happen when they got to Florida around the table, excitement filled the air.

“Hey Lightning, everyone wants to know what your new apartment will look like, is it as big as you say?” Ramone asked while everyone stared at Lightning in wonder.
“Mr. Sterling sent me pictures of what it looked like if you want to see?” Lightning said, pulling out his phone and showing his friends what the apartment looked like, their eyes widened.

“Dadgum! That’s a huge apartment! Good thing Sterling’s paying our rent!” Mater chuckled before slinging an arm around Lightning.

“Mhm, reminds me of Ramone and I’s time in Las Vegas,” Flo said as she kissed her husband on the cheek

“I salute you soldier!” Sarge awed over the pictures while Fillmore rolled his eyes.

“Oh it is absolutely magnificent!! Three bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a large kitchen that Guido and I can cook our Italian cuisine in, a dining room, living room, what more could we want!?” Luigi was ecstatic, admiring the pictures on Lightning’s phone, “It’s perfect! It’s like we’re living in someone famous’ shoes!” He took Guido’s hands and jumped up and down with him.

Lightning laughed, technically they’ve been living near someone famous’ shoes this whole time. Lightning also thought, If Sterling had asked them to pay rent then Lightning would have more than enough to pay the price, but he guessed it wasn’t needed.

“I knew you guys would like it, but doesn’t it seem a bit too much?”

“Are you crazy? Look how beautiful them here view from the balcony looks! and you already know how Luigi feels about it,” Mater quirked, patting him on the back.

Lightning thought for a moment, looking from Mater and then to Luigi still scrolling through the pictures on Lightning’s phone while Guido tried to pry it out of his hands, “I guess you’re right, This is something well deserved for all of us!” He exclaimed.

“You’re darn tootin-right!”

After they had dinner and talked a bit more, they finally all said their farewells and went back to their respective homes to sleep until the morning. Lightning decided to pack a few more things.

By the time he had finished packing and sorting everything out, it was already late. He had just finished calling Mack about bringing his race car to his training centre, and when he hit the end call button, he collapsed onto his soft bed, exasperated from a long day. He set an alarm on his phone so he’d be able to wake up and decided to call it a night.

His heart was still beating with elation, but that soon faded when his mind filled with worry, wondering if things would turn out how they would be, but quickly shut those feelings out and focused on the better outcome that would come out of it, of course everything would go to plan! Lightning stared up at the ceiling before he slowly felt his eyes getting heavy and fell asleep.

x

Lightning awoke to the sound of his alarm going off. He groaned, and started to slowly get out of bed, yawning before heading to the bathroom to get ready.

After he took a shower, he ran a hand through his wet blond hair, found some good clothes to put on, deciding to go with a flowy red t-shirt and some jeans.

He walked to the kitchen and poured himself a bowl of cereal, eating quickly before heading into the bathroom to brush his teeth.

Just then, he heard a knock on his door and opening and closing, probably Mater inviting himself in since he always did that, but Lightning got used to it. He walked out to his front door and saw Mater dressed up, ready to go.

“Good morning Buddy, how’d ya sleep?” He asked.

Lightning nodded, “Yeah, it was good,” he said, rolling his suitcase out from his bedroom, remembering to bring his wallet, keys and passport.

“Everyone’s waiting outside, you can put your stuff in the trunk now,” Mater said, walking out the door. Lightning nodded, and followed Mater, locking the door behind him. He rolled his suitcase over to Ramone’s car since he would be driving them to the airport. He saw all his friends gathering in other cars since they wanted to see them off once they got on the airplane. Lightning was joyful that he was able to fit his own suitcase in Ramone’s trunk since the other three crammed their stuff in there as well. Lighting hopped into the back of the car, and they were off.

Car rides were never quiet when Mater was there, always seeming to find a way to talk about something, even if at some point, he was just talking to himself. Lightning felt at ease when he was with his friends and smiled at the jokes being made.

It was a few hours later and everyone arrived at the airport, taking their stuff out of the car and heading inside. They all said their goodbyes, waving when Lightning, Mater, Guido and Luigi walked to the entrance of the plane. Red was teary eyed as usual and Lizzie just wanted to go home.

X

After a 5 hour flight, and a couple of rides, they finally got to Lightning’s training centre. The four of them walked in and were greeted by Mr. Sterling who had been expecting their arrival.

“Lightning! You finally made it!’ His smile was charming, shaking Lightning and his friends hands.

“Oh hey Mr. Sterling!”

“I’m so glad you’re here! C’mon, I want to show you around, everything’s different since you last came.” Sterling said while he gestured to leave their items here since someone would bring their stuff to their apartment. They followed Mr. Sterling, showing them around, all the racers that were training today greeted him, including Cruz who had decided to stay to train in Lightning’s training centre, she quickly ran over to them.

“You’re here, everyone was expecting you!” She smiled brightly and hugged him.

Lightning smiled and hugged Cruz back, “Thanks Cruz, how have you been?” He hadn’t seen Cruz since her last big race and it was nice to finally see her again.

“I’ve been doing great, it’s great to be treated as racer instead of a trainer,” Cruz smiled warmly and Lightning nodded, he felt happy for her since her dream had finally came true.

“That’s great Cruz,”

“Look, I better leave you guys be now, I’ll see you around,” She waved and walked away to go and finish her training.

Sterling had handed Lightning a piece of paper where his training was written on, he quickly scanned it and nodded, thanking him. Then Mr. Sterling handed the four of them their own keys to their apartment

“I really do hope you enjoy your time here, There will be a car waiting outside to take you to your apartment,” Sterling said, giving Lightning a final pat on the back and was off to deal with some business, which left Lightning and his friends free to do whatever they wanted now.

They planned to go check out the apartment, heading to the entrance when suddenly a group of racers piled through the door, Lightning recognized one of them, Daniel Swervez. Now that he looked at it, they were all next-generation racers, but what were they doing here? He wondered as he saw Sterling with them, he was talking to them about something.

“Hey guys, You go on without me to the apartment, I’m going to stay here for a while,” Lightning said as he waved them off and walked over to the big group of racers so he could figure out what they were doing, “Hey, what’s going on here?” Lightning asked Sterling.

Sterling looked over at Lightning, he looked distraught but tried to cover it up with a big smile, “Oh, Hello Lightning, These racers had nowhere to go because of a fire that happened at their facility down in Louisiana, so they all came here.” He said

Lightning looked over at the racers who had been talking amongst each other and then, it dawned on him. A familiar racer trained there.

Suddenly, a man emerged from the group to the front. He had piercing grey eyes, black shiny hair and a lean build. He looked over at Lightning and grinned, “If it isn’t good ol’ Champ.”

Lightning gritted his teeth.

“Jackson Storm.”

Chapter Text

Lightning seethed, “Why are you here?!”
Of all the people that it had to be, it was Jackson Storm. Lightning walked over to him, giving him a scowl but soon realized just how tall Storm was, towering over him.

“After our place got burnt to a crisp, I had this cool idea of coming to train where Lightning McQueen, the old legend did,” Storm smirked, maintaining eye-contact with Lightning until Sterling stepped in-between the two of them.

“Actually. They were forced to come here because it was the only other place where we had the same technology they used,” Sterling gave Storm a look which told him to back down, Storm crossed his arms and exhaled, still eyeing the older racer.

“Yes Mr. McQueen, We’ll get to train everyday together until the big race, where I’ll beat you once again.” That comment made Lightning bubble with rage, this is not how he was expecting his time at the training centre, he started to regret ever coming here.

“Don’t act all cocky with me Storm, If you’re going to stay here, stop acting like you’re higher up than everyone-“

“Now now, this is no time to talk badly of others, we are here to train, and I strictly prohibit this bad mouthing. Now. I will get all of you guys set up with a schedule,” Sterling said talking to the next-gen racers, managing to remain calm, “And Lightning, go check out your apartment, I think it would be best for all of us,” he gave him a smile.

Lightning sighed and nodded, Sterling was right. He was just getting too worked up about this and needed to calm down. While Sterling busied himself with showing the others around their new training facility, Lightning made his way outside and was driven to the apartment where he would stay in.

When he got there, he walked into the building and went up to the final floor, where his place would be. He found his room number and used his key to open the door, revealing the already arranged furniture. His friends had made themselves at home, they looked over at Lightning and smiled happily.

“Hey McQueen!” Mater called, sitting comfortably on the soft sofa. Lightning smiled and walked over to sit beside him, he laid down, groaning, “Storm’s training at my centre now..” he grumbled. His friends paused what they were doing and gasped, “Storm? That rookie racer?!” Mater stood up from the couch.

Lightning sighed, “Their training centre had a fire and him, and some other next-generation racers were brought here.”

Everyone looked at Lightning, he looked like a kicked puppy, they walked over,
“I’m sure it will be fine mio amico, just.. don’t let him get into your head!” Guido nodded along with Luigi’s words.

Lightning looked over at his friends, and then sat up so he was facing them properly,
“He’s right y’know,” Mater interjected “You can’t let his words ruin your love for racing McQueen! That’s why we’re here.” Mater slapped Lightning on the back like he always did.

Those words made Lightning perk up. Talking to his friends made him lighten up.
“Thank you.. And I love what you guys did to the place.”
Looking around, the apartment was beautiful, the three had already set up items that reminded them of their time in Radiator Springs. Lightning walked into each room. Mater had his own room while Luigi and Guido shared a room together. When Lightning got to his own room, he paused and admired the red and yellow paint that was plastered on the wall, pictures of his race car were hung on the wall above his bed, which was a queen bed. He chuckled, he saw what they did there.

“Mr. Sterling really outdid himself,” he whispered to himself, shaking his head and smiling.
There was a clock on the wall that showed the time, realizing it was already evening, Lightning decided that he and his friends could go out for dinner, to celebrate.

Lightning gathered his wallet and keys, and he and his friends exited out the front door. They were then greeted by a friendly surprise. It was Jackson Storm, along with his crew chief, Ray Reveram. They seemed to be having a conversation.
Oh great, he lived in this apartment complex too? And directly on the same floor. Lightning sighed when they walked passed them, noticing Storm’s room was only two doors down, what could be worse.

Lightning didn’t want to say anything but of course Mater did, “Howdy Mr. Storm!” He exclaimed. Storm only quirked an eyebrow up, arms crossed, giving Mater a confused nod, but as soon as he saw Lightning, he grinned.

“Hey Champ.”

Lightning grumbled and ignored him, walking quickly to the elevator, looking down. He felt Storm’s eyes were still following him while the elevator door closed.

The group decided to go to a restaurant that was around a five minute walk from their apartment. When they were seated, Mater ordered more than enough for them to eat. They engaged in friendly banter until they were all finished with their meal, by that time, they were stuffed, and tired.

Going back to the apartment, Lightning was exhausted and decided to call it a day. He thanked his friends for spending time with him, and walked into his room. He saw that all his stuff was still in suitcases, deciding that he could unpack tomorrow, taking his pajamas out of one of them to wear, then flopping onto his bed. He enraptured himself in the soft covers, slowly dozing off.

x

The sunlight beamed through the closed blinds when Lightning awoke. He stretched, then sat up from the bed, and checked his phone. It was 7am, and Mack texted Lightning a few hours ago saying he had just finished delivering his race car to the centre today and Mr. Anderson was already working on it, Lightning mentally took a note to go meet him later. Sterling had also texted Lightning a pdf version of his schedule, so he checked it, noticing that he was to come in today. He was informed that he was given a car to use during their time here and that the car keys were on his drawer. He got ready, putting on the red, plain tracksuit that he was supposed to wear, given to him by the company. He had a duffel bag full of things he would need for today and walked out the door. He walked down to the underground parking lot. Lightning pressed the button on the car keys, and heard the sound of a car beeping, realizing that was it, hopping in and driving to the facility.

When he got there, he was surprised to see that the place was already buzzing with racers intending to train. He parked his car and headed to the gym where he’d meet someone to help him train. The exercises he did were simple but not as bad as when he first came here and Cruz made him train like he was an old man. Being in your early thirties was not old. Since it was his first day, he knew that he was supposed to go easy and slowly build his way up so he could get used to everything, and eventually be able to use the pro-racer simulator. He was too impatient last time.

After a few hours of training, he decided to have a little break, drinking the water from his bottle, when he noticed Storm had walked into the gym. He looked tired, with bags under his eyes, not seeming like his conceited self. Lightning assumed he wasn’t a morning person. He was only wearing a white t-shirt, which defined his abs, and some track pants. Lightning couldn’t help but stare, Storm really was captivating to look at. Lightning didn’t notice that Storm had come up to him, grey eyes looking down towards him. Lightning broke away from his daze and sputtered, not realizing he was in front of him.

“I think gramps needs his nap time,” He laughed. There it was. His stuck-up attitude was brighter than ever, Lightning grumbled, he wanted to take back everything he thought about Storm just now.
Lightning eyed him,
“Okay Storm, I get it you hate me, what’s new?” he crossed his arms, looking at him with a bitter look.

“Calm down, wouldn’t want you over stimulating yourself,” Storm said.

“Says the one that looks like he’s recovering from a hangover,” Lightning retorted, which made Storm bite his tongue.

Lightning smirked at his reaction, and suddenly had an idea. Before he was going to say anything, Lightning interrupted him,
“Why don’t you just keep whatever you’re going to say to yourself, because if you think you’re such a good racer, than I challenge you to a one on one race, outside on the racetrack at noon,” He proposed.

Though no one wanted to intervene, they were listening intently to Lightning and Storm’s quarrel, waiting for the younger males response. Storm snickered, “Alright, but if I win, you’ll have to do me a favour,” was all he said before walking away. Lightning decided that it would be the perfect time to go and meet the man that would be giving his race car a new engine, Mr Anderson. He walked over to the training facility’s garage and noticed his car, but a man was underneath, tinkering with it.

Lightning cleared his throat, “Um excuse me?” he called out. The man wheeled out from underneath and looked up at Lightning. He looked to be about in his fifties, sporting a tracksuit that seemed to originally be blue but was covered in lots of dirt. Mr. Anderson smiled and stood up, shaking Lightning’s hand,
“McQueen! It’s so nice to meet you, I'm a big fan! It’s an honour to be able to work on your car,” he said with pride.

Lightning smiled back at him, “It’s really nice to meet you too Mr. Anderson, I really appreciate what you’re doing for me.”

“Please. Call me Buff, Mr. Anderson’s my dad,” he chuckled.

Lightning nodded, “Alright, thanks Buff! Look, I have a race against someone today and I was wondering how my engine was doing?” He wondered.

“I just finished placing the new engine in, started working at it as soon as this beauty arrived.”
Buff said, patting the top of Lightning’s car,
“Why don’t you give it a spin?”

Lightning was more than delighted to, with a cheerful nod, he got into the car and drove to the outside racetrack where only a few people were using it at the moment. By now, everyone would’ve probably heard about the race he was going to have with Storm, so he knew it would get packed later. Lightning saw Cruz, and called out to her. She turned around and ran over to Lightning,
“Hey! What’s up? I heard you got some race with Storm today?” Cruz asked.

“Yeah.. I challenged him to a race, but guess what? Buff worked on my car this morning and he got me a new engine, it’ll go faster now!” Lightning exclaimed which made Cruz eyes widen and smiled, “Really? That’s great! Now I can finally race you properly old man! Let’s do this. 2 laps!”

Lightning nodded, as Cruz hopped into her race car, they both rolled over to the start line, revving their engines.
“Oh, it’s good to be back baby!”
Buff had come along to watch, he signaled them to start, the two racers instantly pressed their gas pedals, going around the little racetrack. Cruz was in the lead so far but Lightning was able to catch up with her, it felt different having a car that could go this fast. He was able to pass her tremendously and stayed in the lead before crossing the finish line again. Lightning yelled happily and exited his car, looking over at Buff, who gave him a thumbs up. Cruz was astonished, “Buff, you seriously gotta get me one of those engines! Lightning, that was amazing! You can easily beat Storm now!”

Lightning was sure he could too. He checked the time. It was 10am, so he had a couple more hours to practice around the racetrack. Cruz said her farewells, deciding to go workout but would be back for the race.

After the few hours went by, Lightning slowly saw people trickling around the racetrack, including Guido, Mater and Luigi, wanting to see the race for themselves, since they had heard about it. He even saw Sterling, who didn’t really seem like he wanted this to happen, but was nonetheless there to support the cause. Lightning saw Storm approaching in his race car, the colours shone in the sunlight. The two of them were parked at the start line, both of them getting out to talk with each other. Storm pulled off the helmet he was wearing.

“Hey Champ, hows about we get this thing over with?”

“5 laps around the racetrack,” Lightning said and Storm nodded his head.

“It’ll be so nice finally beat you again,” Storm sniggered.

If he could, Lightning would punch that smile off of Storm’s face, but decided against it, walking back into his car and putting on his helmet, Storm doing the same.

It was Sterling who would be starting the race, bearing a green flag in hand, raising it up in the air slowly, Lightning revved his engine loudly, gripping tightly on his steering wheel. Then, Sterling quickly waved the flag down, signalling for the racers to start, Lightning got the lead first. Everyone cheered, Lightning totally had this in the bag.

He was on his 4th lap, still in the lead when suddenly, he saw Storm slowly start to pass by him. Lightning grumbled, trying to keep his pace. They were on their last lap, neck and neck. Lightning was so sure he would win but was disappointed to find that Storm had crossed the finish line first.

Lightning stopped his car and sighed, at least Storm actually had to work to win this time. He jumped out of his car, looking over at Storm who wore a prideful smile on his face, oh how Lightning wanted to wipe that off.

“So Storm, what was this favour you wanted?” Lightning asked. Storm thought for a moment before he shrugged, “I’ll think about it, thanks for the win,” he grinned, then drove away in his race car.

Lightning’s friends, plus Sterling walked over to him,
“Well I think you did great buddy! Better luck next time though,” Mater said, squeezing Lightning’s shoulder.

“Yes, the new engine that Mr. Anderson placed did drastic changes to your car,” Sterling said.

Cruz nodded, “Just keep practicing, remember the steps I showed you when I was your trainer!”

Lightning nodded, he was grateful to be surrounded by many supportive people.
“Anyways Lightning, tonight, all of the racers are going to go have some drinks at the bar across your apartment tonight, you and your friends should come by,” Sterling siggested, smiling.

“That sounds great, we’ll be there!”

x

During the evening, Lightning and his friends walked into the bar, seeing that Sterling had probably rented on this place so only racers and their friends were allowed. Lightning ordered a beer, while his friends talked amongst themselves for a little bit.
He'd been there for a few hours and after a while, he saw Storm, who was walking towards him. Lightning deadpanned.
Storm ordered 2 shots of whiskey, and glanced at Lightning, “Only beer? Are you a lightweight?” he taunted him. Lightning muttered insults under his breath until he downed his glass, ordering two shots of whiskey for himself.

“Not on your life,” Lightning said, guzzling down the shots, it burned going down his throat, since he usually never drank. Storm raised an eyebrow at him, grinning, and quickly drank his shots, then ordering more, Lightning did the same. It was on.

After 15 shots, Lightning wasn’t too sure if he could go more than that, but it seemed like Storm couldn’t either. It was getting pretty late and his friends decided to go back to their apartment while Lightning stayed with Storm.

“I won!” Lightning exclaimed, before Storm shook his head, “No.. I did,” his words were slurred, inching closer to Lightning.

“What are you talking about? I had more shots than you did,” Lightning argued, he saw how close Storm was, his face was flushed but it was probably because of the alcohol.

“What If I kissed you right now?” Storm boldly said.

“...What?” Lightning thought he must’ve heard him wrong, but soon found himself being kissed by Storm. He didn’t pull back.

It was dark in the bar, and everyone else was as drunk as those two were, so no one really bothered to care to see two men kissing.

That night was filled with untold sexual desires, finally being acknowledged.

Chapter Text

Lightning could hear the birds chirping outside of the window, sitting up from the bed. Lightning groaned, he had a massive headache and he ached all over. Lightning realized that he wasn’t in his room, feeling a presence beside him, he turned to see a sleeping Storm. He stirred softly in his sleep. Realization hit Lightning, falling out of the bed, his face turned bright red.

“Oh fuck. Shit. Shit shit.”

Lightning was glad that Storm hadn’t woken up, assuming he was a heavy sleeper. Without thinking, he quickly gathered his clothes and put them on, running out his door as fast as he could.

He did the walk of shame down the hall. Everything that happened last night, soon rushed back into his mind, realizing exactly what he and Storm did after they kissed at the bar. Lightning lamented, tilting his head down.
“Did we really do that?” He whispered to himself, blushing. Lightning walked up to his door and opened it with his key, walking in. He was too deep in his thoughts, not realizing that Mater was sitting at the island in the kitchen, eating his breakfast.

“Howdy bud.”

Lightning jumped, slowly turning to Mater, he had hoped everyone would still be asleep when he walked in.

“O-oh hey Mater,” Lightning coughed awkwardly.

“You was gone a pretty long time.. When you didn’t come home last night, I thought you and Storm were hooking up or something, I saw them ogling eyes Storm was givin’ you.”

Lightning sputtered, faking a laugh,
“W-what are you talking about? Me? With Storm? I’m not gay!” He half-shouted.
“He just took me to his place and I fell asleep there.. yeah..”

Mater raised an eyebrow up at Lightning curiously, and nodded, “Okay then.”

Lightning was about to say something else, but instantly felt sick, putting a hand over his mouth and rushed into the bathroom, opening the toilet lid. He wondered just how much alcohol he drank last night, his head was still pounding and he felt weak. He wiped his mouth with his sleeve, groaning loudly, holding his head with both hands. Mater made himself known by opening the bathroom door holding some painkillers and a glass of water, oh Lightning was thankful for his best friend.

“Thank you..” Lightning croaked out, desperately taking the painkiller and guzzled the water, he didn’t notice how dry his throat felt until he finished the glass.

“Mater, why didn’t you stay with me last night?! I was drunk out my mind!” He exclaimed.
Mater just shrugged.
“You was in safe hands.” He said, walking out of the bathroom.

Safe? With Storm? Lightning just sighed, turning to look into the mirror to see his face. It was pale, and he had dark bags under his eyes. He rubbed his neck and noticed red and purple marks peeking out of his shirt, lifting it up to reveal many more. Lightning wanted to scream. They were hickeys, the kind that obviously couldn’t be hidden subtlety.

His mind flashed back to Storm on top of him, remembering the way he touched Lightning, his eyes glowed with lust, when he pinned him to the bed. Lightning realized what he was thinking, shaking his head, slapping his cheeks with both hands. Lightning didn’t typically have one-night stands, the only one he could remember having, was way back before he even met Sally, the thing being, they were all with women, and he was the one that topped. Lightning didn’t want to dwell more into this.

He checked his watch. He was glad that he didn’t have to train for another hour. Lightning cleaned himself up, taking a quick hot shower, wrapping a towel around his waist when he was done. He brushed his teeth so he could get the taste of vomit out of his mouth. He moved out of the bathroom to his room, finding a jogging shirt and pants to wear, pulling on a windbreaker. Lightning looked into the mirror, trying to see if there were any signs of his hickeys showing, gladly they weren’t. Lightning slipped on a pair of sunglasses, so they’d hide how tired his eyes looked.

He decided that it was time to head out, quickly eating some food that Luigi made for breakfast, heading out the door to the garage where his car would be, hoping to god that he wouldn’t run into Storm along the way. It was his lucky day, successfully getting to his car without a Storm in sight.

He drove to the training centre, parking it in his reserved spot. He entered the building and went to the gym. His smile faltered when he saw Storm talking with some other racers, he looked just as dead as Lightning did, though he didn’t really seem to cover it up like Lightning tried to. Without thinking, he made his way over to where Storm stood.

“Storm, we need to talk about last night.” Lightning said, which took him and Storm aback. He spent all morning trying to avoid Storm and now he was talking to him. He wasn’t planning on saying that, or anything at all to Storm but still found himself standing a few centimetres away from him, where he rudely interrupted his conversation with Storm’s friends.

“What are you talking about?” Storm questioned him.

Lightning didn’t know what to say, watching Storm and the others gaze at him,

“Well.. uh.. you know about um-“ It embarrassed him how much he was stumbling his words.

“...Y’know what? I just remembered, let’s go.” Storm pulled Lightning with him, leaving his friends in confusion. They exited the gym and walked down the hall, entering an office space that no one seemed to be using right now.

Storm leaned against a desk, crossing his arms, looking towards Lightning, who was fidgeting with his sweater zipper. The room was filled with total silence for a solid minute until Lightning decided to break the unbearable tension.

“About last night.. I.. um..”

“Look, It was a mistake. Let’s forget this ever happened.” Storm interrupted, his face showing guilt, something Lightning had never seen on him before.

The older racer looked up at Storm in confusion, and then cracked, “You want me to forget that ever happened?! That we slept with each other?” His voice boomed with aggravation.

Storm covered Lightning’s mouth, shushing him, “The whole facilities going to hear what we did if you talk that loud!” If Lightning wasn’t as irritated as he was right now, he would’ve thought a disgruntled Storm would’ve been amusing to watch.

“You think I sleep around with every person around me?! You’re the one that kissed me!” Lightning said, pulling Storm’s hands away from his mouth.

“You kissed back.” Storm made a point.

Lightning face was burning up, both from anger and embarrassment.

“Great… Just great, what am I supposed to do with these hickeys you gave me!?”
Lightning said, lifting up his shirt to show Storm all the marks on his body.
“And you! Of all people, an inexperienced rookie!”

Those words set Storm off, “You think I'm not experienced with this stuff?” He fumed.

“That’s right. I can hardly remember last night, but maybe that’s a good thing.” Lightning lied, he may of been drunk but he clearly remembered the sort of things they did.

Storm tightened his fists, walking closer to Lightning, his face darkened.

“I might not sleep with a lot of people, but I know exactly what I’m doing.”

“Is that so?” Lightning laughed nervously, he didn’t like where this is going… Maybe he went too far. He stepped away from his, until his back hit the wall. Storm looked down at him, pressing the palm of his hand on the wall, trapping Lightning.

“So you’ll remember this?”
Storm leaned down, their faces were inches away from each other.

“What are you..” Lightning’s eyes widened.

He was then kissed by Storm. Lightning’s mind was set on flight or fight mode, quickly trying to push Storm away from him, but was pinned to the wall. Lightning thought that he had an insanely stupid amount of strength.

After a few seconds of useless struggling, Lightning finally gave in, and kissed back.
Storm licked the bottom of Lightning’s lip, he got the clue and opened his mouth, being dominated easily. Storm brought his hand onto Lightning’s face to bring him closer, deepening the kiss. Lightning didn’t know how much he could handle, grabbing onto Storm’s forearm, his legs beginning to feel weak, like he was melting.

Storm broke the kiss, leaving a trail of saliva between them. Lightning was bewildered, still holding onto Storm. Lighting snapped out of it, pushing him away.

“Come to my place tonight.”

Lightning didn’t know if Storm was being serious or not, “C’mon.. All this to prove a point?”

“You still owe me a favour.”

Lightning blushed, his head spinning, raising his hand up towards him, telling Storm to pause.

“Wait. I’m not even gay..”

“That’s rich coming from someone who let me top them.” Storm scoffed, his eyes bored onto Lightning’s face.

“Because I was drunk Storm!” Lightning didn’t know why Storm was trying so hard to convince him.

There was another brief moment of silence in the room. It was broken by Storm laughing.

He brought his hand to Lightning’s chin, turning his face towards him,
“Can’t you have a little fun? This isn’t something you usually get to do. Sex with no strings attached, plus I get a feeling you don’t get laid often,” he grinned.

Lightning glared at Storm, “You don’t know that.”

“So I’m wrong?” Storm asked.

“Well… No...” Lightning wasn’t fooling anyone, Storm was right but hated having to admit he was. The last time Lightning remembered taking someone to bed was with Sally and that didn’t sit well with him. Maybe this was something he needed to consider. He didn’t entirely hate the idea, even if it was with Storm, but saying yes right now would’ve cost his pride.

Storm saw Lightning’s facial expressions change, watching him think.

“Have you decided?”

Lightning sighed, “I’ll… think about it..” He replied.

Storm smiled, bringing himself closer to Lightning.

“Good.” He whispered into his ear, sending chills through Lightning, feeling Storm’s breath against him.

“I’ll catch you around then, Champ,” Storm said, as he put a hand in his pocket, leaving the room. Lightning watched him head out the door. He wondered if this would be a good idea. Of course it wasn’t.

Lightning decided he needed to clear his head, heading outside to the racetrack where he saw Buff talking with a racer in a car and nodded. Buff patted the top of the racers car before he drove off. Lightning walked over to him and smiled.

“Hey Buff, How ya been?” He asked

Buff lit up seeing Lightning, “Howdy Lightning!” He called out, slinging his arm around his shoulder. Lighting realized that he acted a lot like Mater, maybe he’d have to introduce him.
“I’ve been great, been working on cars all day. You out here to take your baby out for some laps?”

Lightning nodded, “Yeah, was planning to, needed to get my mind off things.”

Buff smiled, “Alright, I’ll leave you to it,” He said, walking off, talking to some other racers. Lightning went to the garage to get his race car, getting inside the vehicle and driving back to the race track, spending the day at the racetrack, ditching the schedule he was supposed to have today. He couldn’t bother to do anything right now, and racing helped ease his mind when things troubled Lightning.

X

It was getting dark out, Lightning lost track of time, checking his watch. It was nearing the evening. Lightning decided to bring his race car back to the garage. He missed lunch so he wanted to get home quick since Luigi and Guido had probably made dinner for them to eat.

He gathered his things from his locker and went to his car, driving back to the apartment. When he got out of the elevator on his floor, he eyed Storm’s door, pausing for a moment, shaking his head, heading to his apartment, opening the door with his key. Mater was watching something spy related on the tv as Luigi and Guido bickered in the kitchen over something. Lightning could smell the food that was being made.

“Oh Lightning, you’re back late.” Luigi said, “But just in time, we just finished preparing dinner.” He said.

Mater decided to get up from the couch and set the table, while Guido putting plates of Risotto out for everyone. Lightning smiled, “Looks delicious! Thanks.” He said, sitting down with everyone at the table. As they ate, they talked amongst each other, Lightning spaced out from the conversation, only thinking about what happened earlier with Storm.

“Isn’t that right buddy?” Mater asked. Lightning lifted his head to see everyone staring at him, he smiled awkwardly, “Um… yeah?”

“You have 2,000 pairs of dirty old socks?” Luigi questioned Lightning, who gave a look to Mater, who seemed to be containing his laughter.

“What? No!” Lightning yelled, embarrassed.

He looked at Mater, who suddenly burst into a bit of laughter.

“You’ve been acting weird all day, just wanted to poke some fun.” Mater said.

“What’s on your mind Lightning?” Guido suddenly asked.

“It’s nothing! Just tired from last, had a bad hangover,” Lightning half-lied, finishing up his plate, getting up from the table to wash his plate in the sink.

Lightning yawned, “I think I’m going to head to bed early tonight,” he said, as the others nodded, waving goodnight to him. Lightning walked into his room, closing the door behind him, jumping into his bed, as he lay on his back, looking up at the ceiling. The only thing on his mind was the offer that Storm had given him… he did owe him a favour. Lightning sighed.

He didn’t realize that he fell asleep so quickly, blinking his eyes open. It was still dark outside, and he checked his phone to see that it was 11pm. He sat up from his bed and pondered the question if he should go to Storm’s apartment.
Lightning groaned, if he was thinking about it so much, then he should just do it.

He walked into the bathroom that he had in his room, deciding to freshen up and put on casual clothing. Lightning’s heart started racing, as he quietly walked out of his apartment.

He hesitated knocking on Storm’s door. He was about to when suddenly, the door flung open. Lightning whipped his hand behind his back and stepped away, blushing. He looked at Storm, who seemed to have just finished taking a shower, his hair was still damp, with a towel around his shoulders. He wore a loose shirt and tight fitted joggers.

“Oh, you’re here.” Storm bluntly said.

Lightning nodded, and coughed nervously,
“Yes…,” he muttered. Storm grinned mischievously, pulling Lightning into his apartment, closing the door behind them. Lightning scanned his apartment, all the furniture was mostly black, including the wallpaper which was Black with dark blue stripes. It matched Storm’s aesthetic.

“Here. Drink.” Storm said, pouring a shot of bourbon for the both of them, handing one to Lightning. He took the drink and downed it, he really did need this kickstarter. He guessed that Storm lived by himself, since there weren’t any other bedrooms that he could see in the apartment. After they downed a few shots, Storm pulled Lightning to his bedroom without any warning, it carried the same design as the rest of the apartment.

He pushed Lightning onto the bed and kissed him roughly. They both battled for dominance but Storm easily beat Lightning, leaving more hickeys on his neck as Lightning shivered from the contact. Storm slithered his hand underneath Lightning’s shirt, taking it off. He kissed down from Lightning’s neck to his nipple, sucking on it hard.

Lightning roamed his hands through Storm’s hair, letting out soft groans. Storm smoothed his hands down Lightning’s hips, inching close to his pants, taking them off, along with his boxers, discarding them to the floor, leaving an exposed acquiescent Lightning laying on Storm’s bed.

Storm took off his shirt, revealing his toned abs and lean muscles. Lightning couldn’t help but stare as Storm’s biceps flexed with his movement, opening up the lube and rubbing them on his fingers.

“Open your legs.” Storm demanded. Lightning blushed, embarrassed, but complied anyways, opening his legs for Storm to see. He was taken aback when Storm suddenly kissed him, but felt cold fingers entering him slowly. Lightning barked, the feeling was unusual to him, and it also stung. He bit down on his lip, digging his fingers into Storm’s shoulders.

Storm continued to move his fingers in and out of Lightning, bringing them apart from each other, adding in another finger when Storm thought he was loose enough, making Lightning cry out.

“Wait, that’s too much—“ Lightning breathed through moans. Storm snickered, continuing his fast pace into Lightning, “You like that?” Storm teased, forcing Lightning to look at him. Lightning averted his eyes, his cheeks were flushed, he didn’t know how good this felt.

Storm took his fingers out of Lightning and took out a condom from its package. He removed his pants and boxers, putting the condom on. Lightning watched, and gulped at the sight of Storm’s length. How did that ever fit into him?
He questioned. It was like Lightning was experiencing this for the first time, considering he was drunk the last time they did this, and being sober definitely felt different when he was having sex.

Storm positioned himself in-between Lightning, and pushed in slowly. Lightning gasped, trying to ease into the pain, he thought he was going to die.
“You’re too big..” Lightning whispered.
When Storm was all in, he thrust in and out at a steady pace, letting out small groans. Lightning moaned, moving his hips with Storm’s. He couldn’t contain his voice, getting louder and louder when Storm sped up his pace.

Storm covered Lightning’s mouth with his hand, “You’re going to wake up the whole apartment,” Storm suddenly thrust deep, making Lightning yell into Storm’s hand, hitting his prostate. Storm continued to hit the same spot.
Lightning grasped the sheets, tears starting to pool at the side of his eyes. The room was filled with bittersweet noises from the both of them, Lightning could feel himself at his peak, feeling his stomach starting to curl.

He came, tilting his back from the ecstasy, the whole world seemed to go in slow motion. He had never felt an orgasm like this before, he’d had good orgasms but never something like this. Storm quickly came after Lightning, panting heavily on top of him. Storm glanced up to see Lightning’s frenzied state. He looked lustful.

Lightning could feel Storm getting hard again inside of him, giving Storm a confused look, to Lightning's surprise, he was blushing.

“Let’s have another round.”

x

Lightning had snuck back into his apartment without anyone knowing, successfully walking into his room before he got caught,
slumping into his bed. He sighed and rubbed his hip, it was sore. He had argued with Storm that this was the last time they would do this, but when Storm kissed him, he couldn’t resist. He agreed on coming back again. Lightning knew what he was getting into, but maybe it wouldn’t be all that bad. He’d have his needs satisfied, and like Storm said, no strings attached. Sex with a man wasn’t all that bad, and it wasn’t like Storm had any intention for anything else besides that. Lightning convinced himself that was the case, thinking to himself. He lay in his own bed. He couldn’t sleep, especially after that. Lightning had already slept, and determined he didn’t need to sleep, checking his clock, revealing it was already 6am. He was at Storm’s for a long time, considering the amount of rounds they had. He decided he needed to wash up, slowly making his way to the bathroom, he felt like an old man.

“God, I'm turning into Doc,” He whispered to himself, as he held onto his back. He cursed Storm for having such a big libido. After a nice and hot bath, Lightning’s muscles finally relaxed. He thought he should head to the training centre early today since he barely did anything yesterday except ride his car. Lightning got himself dressed up, opening his door, seeing Mater was awake, he wasn’t surprised since everyone in Radiator Springs was an early riser.

“Morning Mater.” Lightning called out to his best friend.

Mater waved to Lightning, “Hey bud, how’d you sleep?” He took out two bowls from the cupboard, placing them on the dining table, and poured both of them some cereal.

“Oh.. It was okay,” Lightning told Mater, sitting down at the table, thanking Mater as he ate the cereal he’d made for him.

“Got a call this morning from Holley, said she’s coming down to visit, along with some of her other acquaintances.” Mater said.

“Oh, your girlfriend?”

Those words made Mater blush, almost choking on his food that he was chewing. He coughed awkwardly which made Lightning laugh, patting Mater on the back.

“Easy there McQueen, just cuz’ Holley’s a girl, does not mean she’s my girlfriend,” Mater said, which only made Lightning laugh more.

“Whatever you say Mater.”

They continued to chat for a while. Lightning decided that it was time he head to the training centre, giving a farewell to Mater, before grabbing his things and heading out.

When he got to the facility, he spent the next few hours at the gym and then at the racetrack. Lightning thought that it was a good day spent and he saw no sign of a Storm bothering him. Yet.

Lightning was just about to head home after a long day of work, but was stopped in his tracks by Storm, who walked up with a cocky air and grin on his face.

“Hey Champ.”

“Don’t call me that,” Lightning sneered at him, he couldn’t forget that Storm was still an asshole.

“I’m sorry, did I upset you?” He laughed, which only made Lightning glare at him.

“Yeah, maybe I'll reconsider coming over tonight,” Lightning replied, Storm was much different when they were alone together.

Storm’s face grimaced before he sighed, folding his arms, “Fine.. McQueen.” He said, averting his gaze. Lightning smiled, he liked seeing Storm act like this. He seemed like he was just a child in an adult body.

“Hmm no, you have to call me Lightning,” He said.

“I refuse.” Storm stuck his tongue out, scowling at Lightning.

Lightning frowned, opening his mouth to say something, before he heard a woman’s voice in the distance.

“Monty! Oh Monty! It is you!” The woman’s voice called out.

Lightning didn’t even have to turn around to figure out who that was. That voice was all but unfamiliar.