Secret Santa, Part I

So, when my BFF/FFJ told me that I had to come up with a Secret Santa present for YBN, I kind of knew what I was going to do. And this is the storyline I came up with when I thought about the words Secret Santa. It’s just a wee bit of nonsense, but it’s festive.

I had planned it as a one-shot, but it’s grown a little bit and it’s gonna be in three parts, released over the next few days. I did honestly try to get them all finished by today, but I failed miserably. i hope you can forgive me.

So, Merry Christmas, Yeeben. Have fun with your Swede.

Disclaimers: Tommy Lynch. The-N. MTV.
Rating: Safe for work. No sex or violence.

* * * * *

Secret Santa, Part I: Silver Bells

“Thanks, but I’m already married,” Ashley told the attractive redhead who’d just offered her room key to the singer.

The young girl, who looked no more than twenty, shrugged and sidled away, heading towards one of Ashley’s backing band. The singer sighed heavily. She suspected that the girl would sleep with any of them – even several of them together – just to have slept with someone famous. It wasn’t an impulse that the brunette understood, but she had definitely taken advantage of it on many occasions. The problem was that, as she got older, the sex seemed less and less worth the self-loathing that she always felt the following morning.

Ashley knew that the main problem, the fact from which she was incapable of escaping, was that none of them were Spencer Carlin. Occasionally, one would resemble the blonde enough and Ashley would give into her need, her craving, to be reunited with the great love of her life. Oh, who was she trying to kid? Spencer Carlin was – and ever would be – the only love of Ashley Davies’ life. That, however, was the huge drawback to finding your one true love when you were still in your teens: it left you with a whole lifetime of pain and regret if you fucked it up.

She finished her drink and looked around the hotel bar. She had no idea what hotel it was and, if it hadn’t been for her roadies taping a note saying ‘Seattle’ to her mic at the gig earlier that evening, she probably wouldn’t have known what city it was, either. A jazz version of a Christmas classic was playing softly in the background, competing with the more raucous sounds of her extended entourage partying. There were times when she could still fake it and join them, forcing herself to appear to be the life and soul. That was the Ashley they liked. She knew full well that they were uncomfortable with Brooding Ashley, who could often be in a black mood for days at a time. But Christmas without Spencer was too unbearable to force herself into anything more than getting through each day without breaking down.

Pushing off the barstool, she stole from the bar unnoticed and, putting her jacket on, she headed out into the cold Seattle night. She had no idea how long, or even in which direction, she had walked when she was roused from her thoughts by the sound of a handbell. She looked around, frowning, trying to work out where the noise was coming from, but all she could see were office buildings and a large group of revellers making their way towards her. It looked they were heading home from an office Christmas party, judging by the antlers that the some of the women in the crowd were wearing and the large amount of tinsel draped over everyone. Shrugging, the brunette shoved her hands in her pockets and hung a right at the next corner, not wishing to get caught up in the festive spirit of the group approaching her.

As she proceeded down the street, she heard the ringing noise again and, once more, saw nothing which might give a clue as to its origin. As she passed an alleyway, she heard the noise a third time, this time accompanied by a hearty, “Merry Christmas!”

Feeling somehow compelled to get to the bottom of the mystery, she headed down the alley, while a rational part of her brain told her that this probably wasn’t the best idea she’d ever had. About a hundred yards in, she spied a pair of large black boots poking out from behind a dumpster. As she got closer, she saw a flash of dirty red velvet tucked into those boots.

No way, she thought. It couldn’t possibly be, could it?

But, sure enough, behind the dumpster, was the saddest-looking Santa she had ever seen, slumped and unconscious. To be fair to the man, he was wearing what, at some undetermined point in the past, must have been a very fine suit: it looked as if it was made from heavy red velvet and it had real silvery buttons, not just Velcro fastening, like the cheap suits sold in WalMart or Target.

His beard was definitely his own and, unlike most winos, it was well-trimmed, as was his hair, which was close-cropped. He seemed a good age for a Santa, too, although Ashley realised that he could probably be any age: life on the streets had a habit of eating into a person’s face. In his lap was the bell that Ashley had been hearing. It also spoke of quality and the brunette tried not to wonder whether he’d stolen it from a church. She was so busy staring at the man’s attire that she didn’t notice that his gentle snoring had stopped and he had opened his eyes.

“Merry Christmas,” he said softly.

Startled, Ashley looked at the man’s face again and saw that he had smiling blue eyes. How anyone could look so content to be experiencing Christmas on the cold and wet streets of Seattle, she did not know.

“You’re a long way from the North Pole, Santa,” she commented, not quite knowing what else to say.

The man looked around, as if he had been unaware of his surroundings until they had been pointed out to him, and grinned. “That I am, young lady. That I am.”

“I wouldn’t worry too much,” the brunette commented, “it’s only the twelfth of the month. You’ve got nearly two weeks left. I’m sure the elves have everything in hand.”

Santa nodded sagely in agreement. Ashley was at a bit of a loss, unsure of what to do now that she had solved her little mystery. She didn’t feel that she could just abandon him here; she knew that Spencer never would have.

“Have you eaten today, Santa?” she finally asked, fishing into her jeans pockets to see if she had a spare few dollars to give him for a hot meal.

“I don’t believe that I have,” he responded, still smiling and sounding remarkably cheerful.

Probably still drunk, the brunette mused. She was once again stumped, as her pockets had yielded nothing but lint and her wallet had only credit cards. She didn’t really have much use for cash when she could charge anything she ever needed to her room, or get someone on her payroll to go fetch for her.

She wasn’t sure what prompted her to act so uncharacteristically, but she suddenly found herself saying, “Is there somewhere round here that we can get you a hot meal, Santa?”

The old man shook his head vigorously. “I couldn’t take your charity.”

“Don’t worry, I can afford it.”

He shook his head again, even more resolutely.

She paused for a moment, thinking. “How about this, then? I haven’t eaten all day myself and I could use a meal. I hate to eat alone, and you’re the only person I know in Seattle. So, I would be obliged if you would join me.” She finished with a flourish, holding her hand out towards Santa.

He pushed himself up to a sitting position and cracked a wide grin. “Well, now, if that isn’t the best offer this old man has had in a long time, I don’t know what is.” He took Ashley’s proffered hand and finally stood. “There’s a very fine diner a couple of blocks over, if you don’t mind the walk.”

Ashley chuckled. “I probably walked miles to get here,” she allowed. “A few hundred yards more couldn’t hurt.”

Santa looked at her quizzically. “Now, that sounds like there’s a story behind it. Why don’t you tell me on the way?”

* * * * *

On the way to the diner, via a quick stop at an ATM for some cash, Ashley explained that she had literally just started walking and hadn’t stopped until she had heard the handbell. As they walked and chatted amiably about the weather in Seattle in winter and how lucky they both were that it wasn’t snowing, Ashley noticed that Santa didn’t appear to be drunk at all, despite her initial assumptions. He had, in fact, quite a sprightly step.

As they reached their destination, he pulled the door of the diner open in a show of chivalry, motioning for Ashley to walk through.

“Why, thank you, kind sir,” she giggled. It was an unfamiliar feeling; in fact, Ashley could not remember when she had last giggled.

“Hey, you!” the girl behind the counter shouted out towards the older man still in the doorway. “You know we don’t serve your kind in here!”

Ashley felt a sudden surge of rage and swirled around, facing the young woman. “He’s with me,” she enunciated slowly, through gritted teeth, “and I have plenty of money for both of us. Now, either we sit down and you serve us or you get your boss out here to explain to me in person why my money’s not good enough.”

As Ashley was speaking, she was so consumed with anger that she didn’t notice the girl’s eyes widening in recognition.

“Oh my God, you’re Ashley Davies!” the girl exclaimed, although she was so over-excited by this fact that her words seemed to all come out as a single sound and at a pitch only dogs could hear.

“Yes, I am and this is my very good friend -” she stopped, suddenly realising that she had not asked the stranger his name yet.

“Kringle, Kris Kringle,” he supplied.

Ashley felt the rest of her sentence dry in her throat and she turned back around to the stranger, raising an eyebrow at him. He nodded in reply, as if confirming that she had heard him correctly.

“- and this is my very good friend, Mr Kringle, and we have both brought large appetites and plenty of money, so we will be sitting over there,” she indicated a large booth by the window, “and will expect you to bring us a couple of coffees while we think about what we’re going to eat.”

Ashley turned away from the stunned young woman and ushered her guest over to their table. As they sat down, she couldn’t stop herself from asking, “Kris Kringle, really?”

“Really,” her older companion confirmed, taking a paper napkin from a metal dispenser and ceremoniously spreading it out over his lap.

“Of course, what else would Santa be called?” Ashley asked, rhetorically. “Well then, Kris, what do you think you’ll be having? Do you have any recommendations?”

Kris’s eyes twinkled with barely-concealed mirth as he whispered conpiratorially, “I hear the chipped beef special is divine. They say the chef has the beef flown in from Scotland itself, while the mushrooms arrive daily from Provence.”

That sent Ashley off into another fit of giggles and, this time, Kris joined her, his hearty laugh booming out across the diner.

“You look very lovely when you smile, young lady,” he noted, when they had recovered their composure. “You should do it more often.”

Ashley looked away to mouth a brief thank-you to the waitress, who had appeared with their coffees and a couple of laminated menus. “Ashley,” she commented.

“Ashley?”

“Yeah, you should call me Ashley. My mother used to call me ‘young lady’ and I’d rather not be reminded of Christine.”

“Not close?” Kris asked as he spooned some sugar into his cup.

Ashley shook her head. “We never have been. She never wanted to be a mother and she made that point very clear, repeatedly, until I gave her her wish by disappearing from her life altogether. I understand that she still enjoys spending my money, though.” She wondered why she was admitting this to a virtual stranger, but she somehow felt safe in the old man’s company.

Kris looked confused. “You don’t talk, but you send her money?”

“I control my father’s estate. Despite everything, I wouldn’t have seen her penniless. She gets a monthly, uh, I don’t recall what my lawyers called it, but it’s like an allowance for grown-ups.”

“A stipend?”

She smiled broadly and turned around in the booth so that her back was leaning against the outer wall and her legs were sprawled out across the vinyl seating. “Exactly! She gets a stipend.”

“You must have a kind soul, young Ashley Davies.”

The brunette scoffed. “You wouldn’t say that if you knew me.”

“Well, look at all this.” Kris spread his arms out to indicate the diner. “You’re buying a stranger dinner. And what is that, if not a random act of kindness?”

Ashley shrugged. “It’s what… anyone would have done.” What she meant to say was that it was what Spencer would have done.

The old man cocked his head to one side for a moment, obviously debating what to say next. Ashley could tell from his demeanour that he had not missed her pause, or that it was significant. She didn’t know how she knew that; she just did.

“No, it’s not what most people would have done. But I’m not going to argue with the hand that feeds. So, have you decided what you’re ordering?” Kris asked, obviously changing the subject.

* * * * *

Two steak and egg specials, two banana splits and several cups of coffee later, Ashley and Kris were chatting away as if they were old friends and not the single most incongruous couple ever to grace the diner they sat in.

There were few things that Ashley hated more than talking about herself and reliving the past, but she found herself, with only scant prompting, telling Kris stories from her childhood and from her time with Spencer. Of course, she never actually mentioned Spencer’s name; she referred to her as ‘my friend’ or ‘someone I used to know’. She had no idea why she felt compelled to share the details of her life with the odd homeless man in the Santa suit, but, once she started, she could hardly stop herself. She was also vaguely aware that Kris had told her nothing about himself, but something pushed that thought to the back of her mind.

She was just finished telling Kris another story about ‘her friend’, when he noted quietly, “You must have loved her very much.”

That stopped Ashley dead in her tracks. The old man was looking at her, his head tilted a little to one side, a look of great warmth behind his blue eyes and he reminded her, oddly, of Spencer herself and the way that she always wanted to see the best in people. Whatever response Ashley had been formulating in her mind was immediately forgotten, as she admitted, equally softly, “More than she knew. More than I knew.”

“Where is she now?”

Ashley shook her head and took a couple of deep breaths. She could feel the tears forming behind her eyes and she desperately tried to push them back. “She’s dead. I killed her.”

The old man said nothing at all in response. He just continued to look at her with his kindly smile and understanding eyes.

“We’d been at a party, a Christmas party, and I was driving us home.” The words came out slowly, Ashley’s pain evident in her ragged breathing and the fact that she was squeezing her eyes together in a futile attempt to stop the tears. “I wasn’t drunk,” she continued, “but I shouldn’t have been driving.” She took another long pause and drained the last of her coffee. “She was only twenty-three…”

As her words dried up, she felt the old man place his hand over one of hers and give it a squeeze.

“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have -”

Ashley shook her head, stopping him from saying anything more.

“You know,” she said, bitterly, the tears flowing now, “there are times when I wish I’d never bumped into her in front of her locker that day. I ruined her life. If we’d never… If I hadn’t… She’d still…”

Wordlessly, she got up from the booth and made her way to the restroom. It was nearly fifteen minutes later when she reappeared, her eyes red-rimmed and her face flushed.

“Okay,” she said firmly, in a tone that clearly indicated that her tear-stained appearance was not up for discussion, “let’s see about finding you somewhere to stay tonight.”

The old man just smiled. “You don’t have to worry about that. I have places to go.”

“That dumpster does not count as ‘places to go’.” She fished into her pocket to get some money so that she could settle up for their meals.

“A proper place,” he assured her.

“A shelter?” She waited until her dining companion nodded. “Are you sure they’ll take you this late? It’s must be -” She was shocked to note from the clock above the counter of the diner that it was after 3am. “Honestly, let me give you some money so you can stay somewhere proper, like a hotel or something?”

Kris stood up, wiping his hands on his chest and adjusting his bedraggled suit jacket. “Ashley, I have somewhere, but I appreciate your thought.”

Ashley suddenly realised that she had no idea where she was going, either. She still didn’t even know the name of her hotel. A quick call to her tour manager – who had not appreciated his boss calling him in the middle of the night – had taken care of that. The waitress who had been so hostile when they first came in even offered to call her a cab. The young woman didn’t overtly state that her price for performing this small task was an autograph, but one of Ashley’s CDs and a Sharpie magically appeared during the conversation.

While waiting for the cab, Ashley repeatedly tried to persuade Kris to take some money, but he steadfastly refused, stating that he had received more than enough from her already.

When the cab finally appeared, Kris left the diner with her and opened the rear door for her to get in. She had one foot in the cab when she turned and asked, “Can I at least give you a ride to your shelter?”

“No, no, no. The walk will help me digest the beautiful meal you provided.”

Ashley impulsively stepped back away from the cab and threw her arms around the old man, enveloping him in a hug.

“I’m glad I met you, Kris,” she muttered as he returned the embrace.

“It’s been entirely my honour, Ashley Davies,” he replied, stepping back and ushering her into the cab. “Now, you take care and have a very merry Christmas.” He smiled. “If you’re good, Santa will bring you everything you wanted.”

Ashley just laughed. “I hope he’s good to you, too, Kris.”

The old man stood and watched as the vehicle pulled away and disappeared off around the corner. Stroking his beard thoughtfully, he headed back into the diner.

“You don’t think you overplayed that one a little?” he asked the girl behind the counter, who was no longer wearing her waitress’s uniform, but a simple green dress.

“Hey, it’s not like you gave me a script,” she countered. “I did what I could.”

“‘We don’t serve your kind’?” the old man said mockingly.

“You did look kinda icky.”

Kris looked down at his red suit, which was back to its more usual shade of bright red, his silver buttons gleaming, all traces of dirt and grime now gone.

“There was a time, my girl, when you were afraid to talk to me, never mind tell me than I looked ‘icky’.”

The girl laughed. “That was over two hundred years ago. You can’t keep bringing that up.” She shook her head and changed the subject. “Anyway, do we know what we’re getting her for Christmas? She seems too young to be so sad.”

“She is. And I know exactly what we’re getting her.”

* * * * *

Ashley stretched out in the king-sized bed, loving the feel of the expensive sheets against her naked skin. She opened her eyes and walked, sleepily, towards the windows. Throwing the curtains open, she was extremely confused to see a view across San Francisco Bay and not downtown Seattle.

Rubbing her hand across her face, she searched the floor for her jeans, trying to find her cellphone. Eventually retrieving it, she hit the speed-dial for her tour manager, Rick.

“Rick?” she asked, as soon as he answered. “When did we get to San Francisco? I thought we were in Seattle last night.”

“Ash?” a familiar voice replied.

“Kyla?! Why the fuck are you answering Rick’s phone? What the fuck do you think you’re doing?”

“Ashley, Ashley, calm down. I’ll be right there. Are you alone?”

“Of course I’m alone. I’m always alone.”

Her sister just snorted. “Sure you are, sis.”

Ashley pulled the cellphone from her ear and stared at it, as if it might give some clue as to why her sister had been in her tour manager’s hotel room. She started pacing the room before she remembered that she was still naked. She found a robe behind the bathroom door and slipped it on. Heading back into the bedroom of her suite, she resumed her pacing. It was nearly half an hour before her sister appeared, two coffees in her hands. She offered one to Ashley and kept the other, sipping at it as she perched on the end of the bed.

“Kyla!” Ashley exclaimed. “What the fuck is going on?”

The younger brunette looked at her pacing sister in concern. “Did you take something last night, Ash? Did that groupie slip you something?”

Ashley couldn’t think what Kyla meant. There had been that redhead in Seattle, but then that couldn’t have been the previous evening if she was now in a different city.

“Honestly, Kyla, the last thing I remember is getting into the elevator in the hotel in Seattle.”

“Seattle?”

“Seattle. Big city, good coffee, rains a lot.”

“Ash, we haven’t been to Seattle this tour.”

The singer was getting exasperated now. This was beyond ridiculous. She clearly remembered being in Seattle the previous day and meeting Seattle’s most bedraggled Santa Claus, although the actual details of both the day and the meal were a little bit fuzzy in her mind. She raised her arm and tested her own temperature by applying the back of her hand to her forehead. Well, she didn’t seem clammy and she didn’t seem to be running a fever. She turned to her younger sister, who was still sipping her coffee and looking slightly bemused.

“Anyway,” Ashley griped, “why did you answer Rick’s phone?”

Kyla’s look went from bemused to confused. “Who’s Rick?”

Ashley threw her arms out in surprise. “What do you mean ‘Who’s Rick?’ He’s my tour manager, Ky. You know, tall guy, uh…” She tried to picture Rick’s face and colouring in her mind, but she found that memory to be a little hazy also.

“Um, Ash, I’m your tour manager,” Kyla explained, in a tone usually reserved for talking to very young children. “Are you sure you didn’t take something last night?”

Ashley shook her head and slumped into a nearby chair, putting her coffee down on the table next to it and holding her head in her hands.

“Should I call a doctor?” Kyla asked with concern. “You’re clearly not well.”

Ashley looked at her blankly. “What?”

“A doctor,” Kyla repeated. “Do you want me to get a doctor?”

Ashley was getting a little scared now. She was in the wrong city. She couldn’t remember anything about her tour manager, except that she knew it was a guy called Rick and not her sister. She tried to concentrate and recall more. She was pretty sure that she’d known Rick for nearly a decade, since her first. He’d started out as a roadie for Purple Venom and worked his way up. She’d called him the previous night and woke him up. Anything else felt clouded, as if he had been someone that she’d read about, rather than known.

“Ky, what date is it?”

“Saturday. Why?”

The older brunette shook her head and repeated herself. “Date. What date is it?”

“Um, December 13.”

Ashley sighed. That was the first thing that had made sense since she had woken up. The previous day had been the 12th.

It’s only the twelfth of the month. You’ve got nearly two weeks left. Ashley could hear the snippet in her mind, and she knew she had said it, but the part she couldn’t recall was to whom she had said it. In fact, she didn’t seem to be able to remember anything that had happened in the last decade or so. Tiny little wisps of things – random phantom images and snatches of conversation – flitted through her mind, but she had no context for any of them.

Suddenly, she felt utterly gripped by panic and she bolted towards the bathroom. Kneeling in front of the toilet, she threw up again and again, until she was finally spent. As she slipped to the floor and felt the cool tile soothe her feverish skin, she saw Kyla in the doorway watching her, a look a terror and concern on her face.

“Right, I’ve had enough of this. Get dressed, we’re going to the Emergency Room.”

* * * * *

Ashley sat in an uncomfortable plastic chair, looking utterly miserable, while Kyla tried to persuade the booking clerk that her sister needed immediate medical attention. Tiring of the effort, she finally exclaimed, “I think she’s having a drug overdose!” loud enough that everyone in the seating area looked up.

Ashley moaned. That was all she needed: to be splashed across every tabloid in the nation with “Ashley Davies in OD shock!” printed over a picture of her in a hospital gown. At least Kyla’s outburst mobilised the staff of the ER, though, and she soon found herself in a curtained area, lying on a bed, while a nurse drew bloods from her and her sister looked on.

“Dr Carlin will be by to see you soon,” the nurse informed them, as she exited the examination bay.

For reasons which she couldn’t fathom, the name made Ashley picture a tall, lithe, white-blonde woman in her forties, but she didn’t think she knew any doctors, although she wasn’t entirely sure that was true.

It seemed an age before the curtains rustled again and a resident in scrubs and a white coat, stethoscope draped around her neck, backed into the area, looking at a chart in her hands. She wasn’t tall or white-blonde and her voice, when she spoke, was considerably younger than Ashley had expected.

“Now, Miss… uh… Davies, what seems to be the problem?”

The resident looked up at her patient, who had turned a very unhealthy shade of grey.

“Connie! Can you come here? She’s vasovagal!” the young doctor shouted over her shoulder, as she moved towards her patient.

As Ashley passed out, her last conscious thought was the word Spencer floating through the flotsam of her mind.

* * * * *

Next up: Part II: It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas [U]

* * * * *

Or, download as an eBook:
ePUB version: http://cl.ly/EKjH
Kindle .mobi version: http://cl.ly/EL5Y

15 Comments

  1. yeahbutno
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 1.29pm | Permalink

    OH MY GOD !!!!!!

    *runs and ….jumps Dev*

    I was seriously just being curious on the other thread…..I wasn’t expecting you or THIS !!!!

    a new fic, a new FANTASTIC fic, with whimsical undertones and a hint of smut to come, Dev you know me so well!!!

    Kris Kringle always makes me think of that Miracle on 34th street….the original one.

    And ohhh I also get he hint of personalised bits too!!!

    THANK YOU oh so much Devolicious

    D
    E
    V

    so what does vasovagal mean? …..*ponders*….is that techie speak?

    so what happens next?

    And Rockstar Ash effin ROCKS……..my fave Ash……and Spence in scrubs *faints*

    *awakes*

    did I say THANK YOU!!!!

    *waits to see what happens next*

  2. yeahbutno
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 1.29pm | Permalink

    and ohhh when is the smut???

  3. yeahbutno
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 1.29pm | Permalink

    I’m gonna make the swede read this too!!!!

  4. yeahbutno
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 1.30pm | Permalink

    TRIPLE POST SCORE

    *punches fist in the air*

  5. yeahbutno
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 1.40pm | Permalink

    *keels over from “rush to the…..*

  6. clomle4
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 4.27pm | Permalink

    is there porn in the next one?

    *ducks*

    MM made me ask

    I likes it!

    No no no… I loves it! Loves it to widdy bitty pieces! Of course I would, you wrote it.

    More please. now.

  7. MissMaclay
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 4.37pm | Permalink

    Sezje, stop spreading lies. I did not tell you to ask about smut…

    I’m asking now though. :D

    Loved it Dev! Like YBN, Rockstar Ash is my favorite too. Was that “uhh” a ‘oh my god, I can’t believe it’s you’ or a ‘what IS your name?’

    Does Spencer remember Ash? … You can post the 2nd part now. I’m sure no one would mind.. :D

  8. Payne N. Uranus
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 6.50pm | Permalink

    Hahaha, I think YBN is happy.

    Just a little bit though.

    But OOOOHHHH!!! I LOVE Christmas stories, they always make me feel like a child again. And by child, I mean one that can’t drink alcohol legally.

    This is already making me confused in the best ways possible. Ashley obviously remembers Spencer, but did she ever meet Spence’s mom? Is this the past, or is it an “alternate reality” sort of thing? And, of course, the obligatory “smut” question. =D

    I agree with M&M. But I suppose waiting could be good, too…if you’re one of those people who have “self-control”. *scoffs* Self-control…

  9. LyricalHarmony
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 7.21pm | Permalink

    Obviously, you don’t know me but that’s besides the point. =]
    This is awesome. Can’t wait for more. =]

  10. iocaste
    Posted 24 December 2008 at 8.43pm | Permalink

    That was absolutely awesome dev :)
    I love it when Yeeben is so happy and excited!

  11. BLB
    Posted 25 December 2008 at 2.54am | Permalink

    What a great start for this story, I’m really glad that it will be multiple starts.

    Not only are your updates well written, but I learned something new when I Googled “vasovagal” because I had no idea what it meant.

    I hope Ashley’s second chance (I assume this is her second chance with Spencer) is very successful.

    I can’t wait to read more :)

  12. Ringo
    Posted 25 December 2008 at 5.54am | Permalink

    *stares at fic*

    *faints from shock*

    DEV?!? A story??? (I’m completely kidding, Dev, I love you and your All-Knowingness and completely understand writer’s block. It’s a bitch.)

    So this is pretty much rocking my socks so far. Gotta say, this line was a kick in the gut:

    “She’s dead. I killed her.”

    But I LOVE where this seems to be heading, and I’m sure I’ll love where it actually goes even more.

  13. Heart-san
    Posted 25 December 2008 at 11.13am | Permalink

    Awsome begining…Hope I see more soon.

  14. evilgiraffe
    Posted 26 December 2008 at 2.10pm | Permalink

    What a fantastic SS gift for YBN! You lucky bugger. But then we all get to read it so it’s all good, woohoo!

    I love this concept. I am sucker for this kind of fairy-tale type thing. It reminds me a little bit of some movie that I can’t quite place.

    So clearly Ashley’s memories are fading, but will they completely fade? Will other people have vague memories of the alternative past? Or is this more like an alternative universe where she never bumped into Spencer that day like she wished?

    I love the way you write Dev and this is another fantastic example. Looking forward to the next two chapters.

  15. Sassy
    Posted 27 December 2008 at 2.40pm | Permalink

    San Francisco..Ashley and Spencer..3 of my favourite things. Yayyy!

    So, I think I got the first part but I’m a bit confused at this second one. I thought you wanted to bring Ashley back to a time before the accident that killed Spencer..but from their encounter at the hospital it seems that Ash and Spence don’t know each other.OK Ashley recognized her but..I’m confused. *pouts*

    Is Ashley’s memory fading?

    Kris’s eyes twinkled with barely-concealed mirth as he whispered conpiratorially, “I hear the chipped beef special is divine. They say the chef has the beef flown in from Scotland itself, while the mushrooms arrive daily from Provence.”

    This made me laugh.:D

    I’m liking this kind Ashley..the way she treats Santa.

    Ashley shook her head and took a couple of deep breaths. She could feel the tears forming behind her eyes and she desperately tried to push them back. “She’s dead. I killed her.”

    O_o..I know it’s not what it seems so I decide to read between the lines. I demand an explanation though!

    The girl laughed. “That was over two hundred years ago. You can’t keep bringing that up.” She shook her head and changed the subject. “Anyway, do we know what we’re getting her for Christmas? She seems too young to be so sad.”

    “She is. And I know exactly what we’re getting her.”

    Ooooh, that elf-girl is a good actress..

    I’m liking this story and I can’t wait to read the second part. I’ll do that tonight!

    YBN, you are one lucky girl;)

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