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DVD Commentary: "little spoon"

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Initial ideas

-I think obviously the main motivation to write Quinn/Thatcher (a friend once lovingly referred to the pairing as “quatcher” after reading “little spoon” and that is what I call them now) comes from the video about Quinn’s nickname, in which Thatcher calls Quinn “cute”

-Then there was the Quinn-POV Petey/Brock fic I wrote (“climbing the same mountain on different sides” or just “climbing” familiarly): originally this fic was going to lean hard into keeping Quinn 100% straight as a juxtaposition to the epbb of it, but as I wrote it, it literally just didn’t make sense, and I added the thread of him questioning his sexuality. In the end that’s one of the main conclusions of the fic, this realization of what all his careful observation of his male teammates really means to him.

-The nudges to quatcher that ended up in “climbing” were then in reference to that video and were fully intentional, with the intention that Thatcher is harboring this secret crush on Quinn. It was partly a joke and partly just a fun thing to pepper into the fic and people really enjoyed it! I jokingly threatened to write the sequel and enough people actually wanted it that I let the idea start marinating.

Inspiration

-I did more work in simply collecting ideas and ~vision-boarding~ this fic than I probably ever have or ever will. I had a big ideas document that I just put any random thought or idea I had throughout the day into, from inspirational songs to ideas about what the plot could look like

-Music is for me the easiest place to draw inspiration from. The song I really started with was “Happy Not Knowing” by Carly Rae Jepsen. I collected a little bit of a mini-playlist from songs I was listening to, starting with “Happy Not Knowing” and including “Bad Liar” by Selena Gomez, “Cruel Summer” by Taylor Swift, “If U Think About Me” by Kim Petras, and “Pusher” by alt-j. The idea started with the tension of rejecting romantic feelings, not wanting the feelings that you can’t help but have.

-“Pusher” as a musical influence tied more into the idea of pushing/pulling which was a main inspiration for the fic that initially came from “climbing”; Jordie says that his relationship works because “She pushes and I pull. We balance each other out.” There was a line after that where Thatcher and Quinn have an interaction where I specifically used the verbs “push” and “pull” as a playful poke to that, and that was a concept I wanted to explore more in a fic specifically about quatcher. Pushing/pulling ended up going in a couple different directions in the final fic but that was one of my earliest inspirations.

-The strangest inspiration for this fic was a moment during math lecture one morning that I absolutely could not get out of my head. At the time (the tail end of fall semester 2019) I was in a manifold several-variable-calculus class (extremely hellish) and in one of our very last lectures of the semester our professor brought up this thought experiment: imagine you are standing on a very very long line, and you need to decide whether it’s a line segment or a circle. How would you go about this? You can’t mark your place, and if it is a circle the circle is so large that you can’t see the curve of it; it’s so large that it just appears to be a line extending into space forever. You could walk forever and never know if you were just walking on a line into infinity or walking in a circle back to the point where you began. It’s been over a year since that day so I’m not sure if I explained it that well but the idea of a circle so large it looks like a line and the uncertainty of never knowing for sure where you are or where you’re going really resonated with me on a philosophical level.

-Another thing I started doing to get inspiration once I decided that I was gonna go write a new fic with a Quinn pairing where the two players had pretty much never interacted (something that not only at the time but even to this day felt and feels completely unhinged) was to explore Quinn’s tag on ao3 to feel out his perspective a little bit. This was actually my initial introduction to Brady/Quinn as a pairing which of course ended up being a big part of the fic. I got a lot of inspiration from exploring his tag! I tend to be pretty cautious about what I read on ao3 while I’m writing a pairing, mostly because I’m always afraid of accidentally pilfering ideas by osmosis, but it felt alright because I was going to be writing a pairing that didn’t exist lol

-I set out to learn a bit more about the Tkachuks and in general explore the content surrounding them when thinking about the tkachughes family friendship and one thing I rediscovered during this time was the video of Drew Doughty yelling “SILVER SPOON” at Matthew in the penalty box, during a morning of watching highlights of him pissing people off while lying on my side in my dorm bed. The silver spoon stuck with me and became central in the fic, especially in the scenes with Matthew (at about 3:00 in this video you can see it. Something about the visual of Doughty miming the spoon to him has always stuck with me)

-There were so so many conversations I had with friends about the Vibes of Hughes brothers and experiences we have had with siblings and families (I have three siblings myself so any sort of family-centered narrative is personal and important to me) and one thing that came from this was thinking about the Marina song “Mowgli’s Road” which also ended up being important inspiration when it came to the motif of spoons and just the way I was thinking about family in terms of this fic in general. At this point “Mowgli’s Road” is basically required listening for the fic haha

Central motifs

-These were the motifs that I circled in on during my outlining and word-vomit note-taking process so they’re what mainly informed my direction during the writing process

-circles: circles as a concept came from that math lecture I mentioned and ended up lending themselves to the idea of Quinn’s confusion in discovering his path and time coming back to him, the idea of the past coming back to him (ie through Brady). I really liked exploring the idea of roads / arcs / pathways, Quinn wondering what would’ve happened with his path if he had understood himself better at a younger age.

-phone calls: I just think phone calls are a sort of fun thing when it comes to communication; there’s something so honest about them but also obfuscated since they’re not face-to-face communication.

-spoons: spoons really became a symbol of privilege and family while writing this fic. The idea of the silver spoon, a set of silverware like family as a set, Quinn’s issues with his family. Titling the fic “little spoon” was originally just a joke after listening to “Your Best American Girl” by Mitski while writing, but I ended up really liking it as a reference both to concepts of privilege and family but also as a nudge to the sex scene, after which Quinn is the little spoon and notes that he’s never done that before, which ties it back into the idea of the discovery of his sexuality. He’s never been the little spoon before just like he’s never been the vulnerable one and he’s never been the “younger brother” in any relationship. But now he’s a younger brother to Elias and Brock: there’s a process of opening himself to the vulnerability of knowing that people care about him and are looking out for him

-pushing and pulling: this came from the inspiration of the scene in “climbing”, and while it started solely as an idea about balance in interpersonal relationships it ended up connecting to a lot of the Quinn’s-life stuff I was exploring -- Quinn pushing his fears and anxieties away versus the way he pulls things and people into his orbit, which then ties back into the concept of the arc of life etc etc

Writing process

-The general idea for the arc of the plot centered around the structure of him coming out to different people in his life, which ended up being the final structure (built out a bit more than perhaps originally intended, I don’t think I expected or necessarily wanted the fic to be 20k). The idea of structuring it this way spiraled from “climbing”; the final scene of that fic is him about to come out to Jack, and I thought I could structure the fic as a natural progression from that

-It felt really important that it was a process in many ways: not only is coming out a continual process, but Quinn’s discovery of himself, both emotional and sexual, is a process through the fic as well. This idea of a process also lends itself to another structural element I came up with, which is the increasing levels of honesty/explanation through the sections. Jack’s section is mostly obscured from us but it’s very vague and handwaved, Luke’s conversation is a very awkward stilted “I’m into both”, with Petey he’s a little more vulnerable and asks for advice, and Petey says the word “bi”, which then follows into Brock’s section which is the first time Quinn calls himself “bi”, then in Matthew’s section he admits he has a crush on a teammate, which goes a bit further in Brady’s section where Quinn explicitly tells someone for the first time that Thatcher specifically is his crush, then of course Thatcher’s section is admitting the crush to the crushee and Ellen’s is telling someone he’s in a relationship with another man.

-Other things about the sections: family was such an important aspect to the fic that I wanted everyone who got a section to be family to Quinn in some way (Bo, Jim, and Quinn’s ex from “climbing” were all in consideration for getting their own section but none felt important enough, and for Jim I really wanted to obscure/exclude him). I also debated whether or not to include the names as section headers when I published the fic, because originally they were just there as headers to help me find my way around my own Google Doc. I’m really glad I kept them because now they feel like such a hallmark of the fic to me and I adore them so much. And in relation to these headers something else random was that white space in formatting was extremely important to me. I wanted each section to have a breath / physical pause between them, I wanted the name to demand that moment of space where the reader has nothing to look at but the name, I wanted the reader to scroll down and be hit with a moment where the name “Thatcher” or “Ellen” is the main focal point of the screen and for that to be a heavy gut punch to the reader, because by that point the reader knows what the section names mean so they know what they’re in for. Those were pretty much the reasons that I kept the names as section headers and I’m so glad I did. Also now I am obsessed with writing fic with sections so that’s a fun by-product of that.

-Okay I promise I’m done rambling about sections now here’s some other stuff about my writing process for this fic:

-Originally the fic began exactly right where “climbing” leaves off and included the entire phone conversation with Jack, but I wanted the fic to be able to stand on its own and be able to be read independently of “climbing” so I edited it so we just get a reference to that initial coming-out to Jack. We do get info on what Jack said and how it was awkward so it felt like a good balance, plus we have Jack bring it up in the phone call so we still get that moment of painful honesty between two people.

-There was a riff on Twitter that basically got lifted straight out of that app and became the accidental hoodie-stealing scene! Being able to chat to people about this fic and the dynamics was really invaluably helpful to me and it really gave me so many cute but also capital-I Important ideas about the direction of the fic

-The hardest scene in the fic for me to write was the nighttime drive fic, or at least in my memory I had a really hard time with that one. I also really struggled with getting the exact Feeling I wanted in the suspension bridge not-a-date scene and came back to it multiple times. Overall for me the hardest things to write are moments of transition and lead-ins to scenes. I don’t write consecutively so usually I’ll have an idea for a line of dialog or physical moment and I’ll write the “meat” of the scene and then I’ll have to go back and get the characters there. I wrote the majority of this fic during my winter break so I had lots of uninterrupted blocks of time to work on it

-In contrast, scenes that came really easily to me were things like the draft flashback and dinner with Matthew. I have a lot of fun writing Matthew; I think it’s a really playful voice and there’s an interesting perspective and dynamic in his scenes where the reader is brought out from the Canucks’ bubble and they get a glimpse of a wider world but not quite all of it.

-There is a deleted scene from the fic! When Quinn and Thatcher crash a wedding and go dancing, it was originally a scene where Thatcher takes Quinn to the pool in the hotel and they stand in the hot tub. It really really sucked to cut a whole scene and I debated it a lot but something about it always felt wrong. I ended up liking the idea of them being mistaken for a couple, and as a nod to what the scene once was I kept the idea of them taking their shoes off and walking back up to their floor in their socks. Something about that image felt intimate in a really gentle way that I liked a lot.

Section specific notes:

Jack:

-As I said before, originally this scene started straight off at the end of “climbing”, but I decided against it, so I wanted to lay the base for all the important aspects of the fic as soon as possible. This means: introducing Quinn and Elias as roommates (which they definitely did not do, as I later learned, which sorta ruins the entire concept of “climbing” and therefore this fic, but oh well), introducing EP/BB, pulling in Brady, (obviously) inciting motion in the quatcher relationship, and giving context to the conversation between Jack and Quinn that we miss.

-It felt appropriate for Jack to respond poorly to Quinn trying to come out to him, not from an I Am An Active Homophobe perspective but rather from a surprised and ill-equipped yet loving brother standpoint. But along with that I think the loving brother aspect of it made it important for Jack to follow up and maybe swallow some pride and have an emotionally stripped moment about it. I also think the “I think Luke always thought--” line is a small but painful heartbreak in this fic for me. It doubles as helping tease the coming stuff with Brady but also nudges toward one of the arcing concepts of the fic about what could’ve been if you had known yourself earlier in your life. Also, the idea of other people in your life knowing your sexuality before you, or making comments that refer to knowing before you, is something that’s happened to me before and I think it can be really painful to hear comments like that. Just a small anguish.

-“I’ll probably still jerk off thinking about them later.” is one of my absolute favorite lines in the fic

-Unironically there are so many scenes of Quinn jacking off in this fic because in “climbing” he listens to Elias have a rich sex life for the entire fic and never gets off at all so I was joking with some people that in the sequel I was going to let Quinn get off so many times. And that’s why he masturbates so much. Also because I think uncomfortable masturbation scenes are important especially when someone’s still figuring out their sexuality!

-The plastic spoons thing was so dumb I know but I knew I needed them to go shopping for cutlery together later in the fic for Metaphor Reasons so we get Thatcher with plastic spoons even though he is a grown-ass adult.

Luke:

-I wanted Luke’s voice to be like… gross teen boy to the extreme, to the point of discomfort for the reader. He had to be really brash and crass during the conversation; it was about building a contrast in the ease with which Luke talks about non-straightness as a fact of life and not a foreign concept. I wanted the 3 brothers to have a descending amount of internalized homophobia -- Quinn is Going Through It, Jack is confused but he has the spirit of it, and Luke is gross but has absolutely no issue or pause with it (we also know Luke thought Brady and Quinn were a thing).

-While outlining I was also trying to be aware of Thatcher’s internal arc and feelings towards Quinn: the running off to the wedding is a hope-inducing moment for Thatcher and afterwards he feels emboldened to ask Quinn out, thinking Quinn feels the same and that they’re on the same page as to where their relationship is going.

Elias:

-Ah, Canyon Lights! As I said before, this was a hard one for me to write, mostly because I kept coming back to it to try to really nail the ambiance and the vibe of the night. You can Google it, it is a real thing and it looks so beautiful from the photos I found (though I am not from Vancouver and have never been there so there was a lot of Googling and Google-Mapsing to make this fic happen). I’m not sure how I even came across it to include it, I think I found the bridge park through Elias’ instagram and then by serendipity noticed their winter light show on their website? It’s been too long to remember. Anyway, what I like most about this scene at the end of the day is just how obviously it’s a date, how touchy Thatcher is with Quinn and how romantic of a gesture the night is, and Quinn just doesn’t understand it at all. Thatcher’s even going in for the kiss when they’re at the doorway together and Quinn completely curves him. RIP.

-Also the thought of Quinn only offhandedly mentioning where he’s going to Elias and Brock and them still understanding better than Quinn what the night was supposed to be is so funny to me. Elias and Brock really heard that Thatcher was taking Quinn to Canyon Lights and their first thought was “oh okay they’re fucking, guess we have the apartment to ourselves tonight”.

-The point of this section had to be inciting the Brock section -- it was important to me that Elias is a shitty advice giver, at least to Quinn. And also that Elias understands he’s the wrong person for Quinn to talk to, that he knows that the person Quinn needs right now is Brock. I really love the Elias/Quinn relationship because they have such an understanding of and care for each other but it doesn’t always necessarily look like what you might expect. They know, and do, the thing that the other needs, even if it’s not what a “normal” person might need.

-This section includes the very first instance of the utterance “bi”!! It’s part of our slow journey toward opening up and blossoming like the beautiful little flower that Quintin is. Also, this again is a moment where someone other than Quinn understands him better than himself / makes a (frankly correct) assumption about his sexuality. Like with Luke thinking Brady and Quinn were a thing, it’s a shitty feeling but it is forcing Quinn to face himself and consider these things.

-Oh also the person Elias refers to as his crush is up to interpretation. I guess I was kinda thinking Jonathan Dahlen but I couldn’t be bothered to research when they actually played together so it’s up to you to decide who Petey’s big gay awakening was.

-I think the hotel scene is something I would change if I were to revise this fic today. In the process of writing this commentary, I actually opened up and dusted off my outline for the fic, and my initial notes on what I wanted for this scene I think are a lot more interesting than what I actually ended up with: “Maybe he has quinn stay late for some reason?”, “Or he’s just the last to leave and they’re almost alone”, “Basically thatch getting back into his own pining / things maybe getting back to normal after the bridge date not date.” I think ultimately the scene is successful in its main goal of reminding Thatcher of his feelings and making him feel a little more encouraged after the disaster of Canyon Lights. Also I do really like the image of the pretzel hanging out of Thatcher’s mouth, an intentional reference to the way the Tkachuks look with their mouthguards hanging out of their mouths. But, that said, looking back at my outline I really wish this scene had instead just been Quinn being the last to leave and there’s an almost moment, where Thatcher almost asks him to stay, where Quinn almost turns back around and doesn’t leave. I think that could’ve been really fun.

-As I said, the hoodie scene came entirely from Twitter! Clothes stealing is just the vibe when it comes to size difference ships, y’know. Also Elias is so smug when he sees Quinn come home with that hoodie on.

-“[Quinn’s] heard this story before and it was a tragedy.” is one of my favorite lines in the fic!

Brock:

-The important thing to me about this scene was that Brock had to hug Quinn. There was a fun internalized homophobia moment of Brock congratulating Quinn and Quinn feeling like… why is this something to be excited about?

-I’ll admit it swings REALLY fast, probably too fast, from hugs to “have you tried fingering yourself” but… oh well. That line was a joke at first but as you may know, all of my darlings are alive and well. Also, in a purely practical sense, I knew where I was headed and so we really did need to hit a narrative moment of Quinn diving headfirst into sexual experimentation

-I still to this day get SUCH a kick out of “It takes him a little while, a week or so of jerking off with fingers in his ass until it comes (haha) naturally.” Once again, another darling alive and well. Lines like that are things that frankly are important to me to keep because at the end of the day writing hrpf is a hobby and it’s something I do for myself. That line is for me! If I’m not getting paid I’m leaving the stupid terrible orgasm joke in!!

-Oh also “2020 is pretty cool so far.” aged stupid bad. Whoops.

-The jerking-off post-bar scene is something that I really can’t even reread. I feel like it’s more embarrassing than the full-on sex scene later. Possibly another scene I’d change but it serves its purpose!

Matthew:

-This is my favorite section! I think the Matthew/Quinn dynamic is so interesting and important, and it’s such a satisfying change of pace in the middle of the fic that serves as a moment of swerve that it really needs at this point.

-Okay before we get Matthew we have to do the nighttime drive scene, which was a pain in my ass to write and I’m still not super happy with it. The intention was that they’re somewhere in … Stanley Park? But as I’ve said this fic was brought to you by Google Maps so it’s left hand-waved.

-Now onto the ASW! Firstly, this was written like a full month before Brady was invited last-minute to participate so I didn’t have him present. I think it’s to the benefit of the fic, though, because we get to delay their first encounter with each other until it really matters. As for dinner, honestly I was not deep enough into Tkachuk discourse (...tkachourse…?) during the period of writing this fic to even know that there was even a running theme / joke / whatever about Keith being a Bad Dad especially to Matthew. And I do think that ended up being a real benefit to the fic. In the end it doesn’t really matter whether or not Keith is a good father or not, or even whether Jim is a good father or not. It all exists only in Quinn’s head as a matter of perception (Neither man appears in the fic. We don’t know them! We only know what the characters have to say about them). Keith being a surrogate father to Quinn in the time he lived with him at the program felt important to me.

-What makes the dinner scene enjoyable for me is that the reader is getting teased about the wider backstory of things but at the same time Matthew and Quinn themselves are both so uncomfortable talking about it that they end up talking around it. I loved writing Matthew’s admittance that he doesn’t know how to talk to Brady about “it”, where “it” is a sort of unidentified shapeless concept that the reader can probably guess at but not the exact lines of it. (And I think even at the end of the fic when you have a better understanding of the backstory, I don’t necessarily think it’s obvious what “it” is even then. All of it, maybe. Everything, maybe. How can we be so close to our siblings and yet the words fail us when they matter most?) Then to pair with that of course Matthew tells Quinn that “Walt knows” about Brady’s “stuff”, but there’s no indication of what “stuff” means. Brady’s sexuality? Brady having his heart broken by Quinn? I didn’t write this with an intended answer as to what “stuff” means here. The ambiguity in this scene is something I come back to a lot when I think about this fic, because now when I reread it, with the eyes of a reader, I can only speculate about what Matthew means here. I have a few pet theories about it but I think it’s up to the reader individually what’s going on here.

-“Sometimes Matthew reminds Quinn so much of Brady it makes him feel sick to his stomach.” was one of those bolt-of-lightning lines that came to me very early on; it’s actually in the original outline of the fic (which, I don’t usually include such specific details in an outline unless it’s a line that comes to me that I know I want to include)

-Quinn and Thatcher go shopping and buy silverware and other kitchen stuff - the set of 3 plates that fly off the backseat but don’t crack are a little nudge to the Hughes brothers as a “set of 3”, and the idea of tested but not broken bonds.

Brady:

-I honestly feel so stupid about the fumigation detail. But it kinda makes me laugh which is why it got to stay. Also, we learn right at the start of the fic that Thatcher has a guest room and we would be remiss if it didn’t get used! Also we get yet another tease of the backstory, which is coming up real fast on us.

-Brady’s French Canadian hookup was not written to be Thomas Chabot but multiple people asked me if it was supposed to be him after the fact, so if you want it to be Chabs then live your truth! I do really like the Thomas/Brady dynamic

-“Quinny” as a nickname makes me so terribly, agonizingly, achingly soft. I’m gonna write a bit more about nicknames later but the hit of “Quinny” in Brady’s soft and sad voice… man.

-We get “I don’t love you but I love you” and “Quinn doesn’t love Brady, but he loves Brady.”, and later we get the opposite ordering, “Quinn loves Brady but he doesn’t love Brady.”, which felt important in terms of the weighting of the sentences and where the focus lies.

-I think I accidentally made the most interesting part of this fic a flashback scene completely unrelated to the main pairing. Oops!

-The intentional way Quinn keeps the backstory from us and doesn’t explicitly tell the story with Brady is until the end is a reference to Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech, fun fact!

Thatcher:

-Looking back at my outline now, it’s interesting to me how short the Thatcher and Ellen sections of the outline are, especially Thatcher’s. I suppose it makes sense because each section only really had one goal: get together in Thatcher’s section, come out to her in Ellen’s section.

-Marky telling Quinn “It’s okay to fall” is, like, a liiiittle on-the-nose but it just worked so well with the central “Quinn doesn’t go falling” that I had to use it haha

-“I think I like you a lot. I think I like you too much.” was another line written very early on in the outlining process, I was just so enamored with the rhythm and musicality of the line and thought it worked really well with the Quinn that I was building. Sometimes I think when outlining / ~vision boarding~ bits, a line just jumps out to you and you have a moment like “oh, I can’t not include this.”

-In the interest of complete honesty I am going to tell you something I have never before told anyone, and it is incredibly embarrassing. During the sex scene when Quinn asks Thatcher to say his name and Thatcher says “Huggy”, and then Quinn asks again and Thatcher says “Quinn”, that was not meant to be funny but rather a serious thematic moment of vulnerability where Thatcher uses Quinn’s real name for the first time. I had multiple people tell me after the fact that they found it funny which was embarrassing but also pretty funny and with distance from it, it is hilarious. Imagine someone calling you “Huggy” while they’re balls deep. God bless

Ellen:

-Finally a woman! Especially for a fic that has tension around relationships with father figures, it’s important to me to have Quinn melt on all his edges for her. When it comes to his mother, he has no defenses.

-A tiny note is that after their first official date they go up the stairs (the elevator goes too fast), whereas after the suspension bridge not-date they take the elevator! Just little tiny romances

-Besides those points… I like to let this section speak for itself. :)

Other

-Thatcher’s hotel room being number 413 is, indeed, a Homestuck reference. Sorry

-I talked about this a little but I think it’s important that Jim never actually appears in the fic. There is this definite lean-in toward Daddy Issues but he’s completely and utterly absent. I think the issues that Quinn dances around and never quite voices have a lot to do with his own perceptions and feelings about the people around him rather than what they’re actually like.

-Quinn telling Brady “I’m not gay” in the flashback is a lot heavier if you consider it a world where Brady was already out to Quinn at the time of the draft; it’s as if he’s saying, I’m not like YOU, Brady. I didn’t necessarily write it with that in mind? But I sometimes like to think about it that way. It adds a little heartbreak to me. I want the reader of this fic to be able to interpret the backstory however they want to.

-The blue carpet and yellow walls from the draft flashback as well as the spoon motif also made their way into another one of my fics, let’s get unstuck! which is a, um, gen fic about Matthew (self-promo? In MY dvd commentary? It’s more likely than you think). There’s a moment of spoons which act as a forewarning of sorts of Quinn’s entry into the scene which was just a fun little easter egg to include.

-The nicknames people use for Quinn were very carefully selected and planned!! In general he’s “Huggy”, but we get “Quinny” from Brady (and Quinn telling him specifically not to use “Huggy Bear” -- there’s a line crossing there that’s just wrong to him), “Quinner” from his brothers and Matthew, “Q” from Elias (irl I believe Elias has used “Huggy” maybe twice in interviews but otherwise usually says “Quinn” which I’ve always found interesting), and one “Quinn” from Thatcher.

-One random thing was the music in the car during the nighttime drive scene: I really wasn’t sure whether or not to keep the specific reference to them listening to Arctic Monkeys? It felt like it sort of takes the reader out of it for a moment and I wasn’t sure if it was necessary. I ended up keeping it because “Do I Wanna Know” as a song pretty much represents Thatcher’s point of view of the scenario in the fic.

-Lastly, I guess this could go in the notes for Ellen’s section but it feels appropriate to end the notes with this, is that the end of the fic mirrors the beginning: eating cereal, listening to Brock and Elias in Elias’ room, at nighttime as compared to the same scenario happening in the morning in the first scene. In a very real way, a circle closes at the end of the fic. Circles were so important to the fic that it felt like an appropriate way to close! Also: there is something similar happening in climbing (that fic begins with Quinn realizing the feelings of a teammate, specifically Brock’s crush on Elias, and closes with a realization of Quinn’s own feelings) and even though the two fics stand pretty comfortably on their own it still is important to me that they are tied together and work together thematically so I liked linking them this way.

-Overall this fic got ten times the response I ever in a million years thought it would get as a rarepair with two players that had never really interacted! I am so so grateful to everyone who read it, whether it be the people who encouraged me to write it, or got recced the fic by a friend, or just randomly chose to read it. It means a lot to me! The fic is super personal and I care a lot about it :)