Riders On The Storm

September 25, 2018:

Johnny and June say goodbye.

Johnny Blaze's Garage

A tricked out garage, complete with Dodge Charger, various cars and trucks in various states of repair, and a not-quite Hellcycle.

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: Davy Jones Theme


Fade In…

It was late in the afternoon, when June returned to Johnny's shop, her expression darker, more withdrawn than he's used to seeing on her. Even when she returned from a mission, she was never this quiet, this reserved. June paused at the door, hand just held a inch from the lock, as if she couldn't quite make herself get there. But eventually, she did, slipping into the garage, eyes immediately scanning the open space to see if she could catch sight of him.

-

Well, there he was. He appears to be deciding whether or not to trash the car because of his own frustration. A sledgehammer is nearby. But, he seems to be cleaning off the dodge charger that he bought with June at that car show. They were in such marital bliss then. But, he wore his usual grey t-shirt with black jeans and combat boots. Did he get back from being the Ghost Rider?

Those tires do look a bit like they just finished getting Cinder cleaned off of them. He doesn't seem to have noticed June yet…or at the least, he doesn't look like he's paid attention to her arrival.

-

June stepped inside the garage, the door closing and locking behind her. And for the first few minutes, she seemed bound and determined to look everywhere except at the man that seemed to stand in the middle of a storm of his—now, it was not his own making. It was hers. Always hers. From the first time they had clashed to now, it had always been her at the center of all of their discord. Finally, when she could draw it out no longer, she spoke, "Johnny." She lifted her voice, the sound of it carrying across the distance, as she had still not stepped away from the door.

-

Johnny didn't even seem to react or looked startled when June finally voiced her arrival. He doesn't seem to answer at first, even though his actions start to slow…like he thought about it. But June, through her observations, would be able to notice a few things. He was still wearing his wedding ring that she gave to him, and there was a rather large bottle of Jack Daniels that Johnny seems to have been drinking for quite a bit now. and there's another bottle right behind it that's ready for his attentions at any moment.

Ironically, June knows by now that Johnny can't get drunk. Not even buzzed.

"June." is all he says back, setting down his cleaning rag, rubbing his forehead with his forearm.

Did she come again to make her statements clear? They had…quite the argument. Enchantress and Ghost Rider had to almost hold them back.

-

June jumped, at the sound of his voice, as if she were not actually standing staring right at the man, as if the sound of his voice had completely caught her unawares. She did not approach him. Rather, she moved towards one of the tables, where bits and pieces of equipment had been set out. What she finally reached for, as she got there, was the helmet he had painted for her, bright and colourful as ever, a sugar skull hand-painted onto her personal motorcycle helmet. She had long ago abandoned the one that Enchantress had stolen, the night she rode the Hellcycle for the first time. Her voice was soft, barely above a whisper when she spoke, "I came to get my things."

-

Man, what a far way to fall. They were the happiest married pair in Gotham and New York (depending on where they were staying). Now? Discord galore. Johnny stops working as she tells him that she's come to get her things.

He didn't have the heart to look her in the eyes. But…he didn't need to. He sets his tool down and he turns to look at June. "I know." he says in that soft voice. If she looked him in the eyes? Pure, unadulterated heartbreak. She knew he loved her with all of his soul. He still does.

"I gathered them up…put them in on the table in the next room." his voice was soft. Almost shaky. Fight back the tears. Man up.

-

June hugged the helmet to her chest, as though it were the most precious thing in the world, some odd token born of what they had had. There was a moment, when she thought to herself, that she had at least had the courage to bring the papers to him herself. To face him. That she could be proud of that. But she wasn't. There was nothing to be proud of in any of this. But that was too painful to think about now, and the least of their troubles. "Thank you." Every ounce of her emotion, all of the things she had said, and even beyond that all of the things she could not, now, say to him, in those words, as she carried herself, and her helmet back towards the door that led into their - no, his apartment.

-

Johnny looked to the Helmet that she held to her chest like it was a lifeline. It was even worse that they'd perhaps always be remembered of each other. With the tattoos they had on their bodies, the intimacy that they shared. The words that they gave. What they had…what they, in some hidden way, still did. "Wait.." Perhaps that was Johnny just saying 'wait' to his heart's desire. The only thing that gave him any kind of happiness.

His wife…his..ex-wife.

But he looks over, and grabs a locket. It was heart-shaped. Wings on either side of the heart. the middle jewel was a mix of red and green…beautiful all around. But he clenched it tightly, fighting back his tears..but he walks up to her, and he extends his hand to her, the locket in his palm. Attached to a necklace chain..for that intended purpose: a necklace.

She could likely decipher why he wants her to have it.

"My heart has…and will always belong to you." She was and is the only woman he could ever trust, to ever love in such a manner.

-

June froze, as his voice came again, and she stopped, turning just before she would have been close enough to reach out for the door, the one that had been a beginning and an end for them. She watched in silence, not looking at Johnny's face, but rather, focusing her gaze somewhere in the region of his chest, as he approached, picking up something along the way. When he held out his hand, she hesitated, before she set down the helmet, the thing ending up resting cock-eyed, and was that not the perfect metaphor for their lives, on top of a toolbox that sat on the rolling cart that always sat right next to the door, reaching out a hand to accept the locket, holding it in the palm of her hand. She simply stared at it for a long moment, before she opened it, the interior not hiding pictures, or locks of hair, but a tiny music box, the sweet, sad song that it played as she opened it breaking what was left of her heart. By the time the song had faded, a tear had slid from her cheek and landed on the drum. "I know. I've always known….and mine." She closed the front of the locket, the light glittering on the gem, before she lifted the necklace and slipped it around her neck, tucking it down inside of her shirt. A hidden thing, but a real thing.

-

Johnny listened to the song play, and even his cold, hard exterior couldn't stop a tear from flowing down his cheek. But…he was probably expecting her to throw it. Not put it on in front of him and hide it in her shirt. His heart was always with her. In both a literal and figurative sense. But, he takes an identical locket, and he puts it around his neck. Another tear streaming down his face, he presses his forehead to hers before trying to just pull her into his embrace.

Divorce documents were signed. June moved out. They had no children, so no rights needed to be fought over. Johnny already knew…

That this could be the last time he held his wife.

-

June didn't look up, she didn't dare. She wasn't strong enough, no matter how much she told herself, to look up into the face of the man she had walked away from. Instead, she simply allowed him to take her into his embrace, her arms dead at her side for a long moment, before they rose and she hugged him as tightly as humanly possible. One last time to pay for all. Not for the pain she had caused him. She could never pay for that. Or, no, she would always pay for that. But one more embrace, one final goodbye.

-

Johnny held June so tightly. As tight as he could. Johnny would hold the pain that he'd pay for…what made her run away. Her urge to protect the unkillable. But…with one last look…he lets his arms loosen, and he lets her go..looking into her eyes. "I love you." and with that, his hands move to hers, letting her leave with the slowly departing touch of their hands.

The last goodbye.

Would they ever meet again?

-

"Love you too." June felt his strength, human, and something more than human, the demon inside of him that was never far from the surface. She could have protested, could have let him know that it was too much. But it wasn't. Not in that moment, as they clung together for the last time. Two lost children in the storm. And then he slipped away, and so did she, the light from the overhead fluorescents, for a moment, seeming to illuminate the tattoo on her bicep, worked into the sleeve that covered her skin. Not Johnny's face, but the Ghost Rider's though there was some echo of the mortal in the immortal. He back to the garage, and she to his apartment, to retrieve the small box of things he had packed for her. When she left, she left through the side door, and not through the garage. It was, perhaps, the coward's way, but it was the only way she could muster the strength.

-

Johnny's own forearm showed the vinework of June's own tattoos reflected upon him. They both held so many signs of the other. So…as soon as June left, Johnny felt the strength in his legs give out, he sat down, and silently…

He wept.

With only Zarathos and his own shattered heart to keep him company.

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