12/11/22 - 5/03/23 - no clue why this was edited in march but ! more time loop shenanigans. this was probably something for a prompt but i forgot what it was COMPLETELY so i'm filing it under for fun. i never showed this to anyone in my class so it barrely counts anyways. just straight up self indulgent "julian's in a time loop again and it sucks but god he has his friends and eva is weirdly time anomalic again, whatever" fic, complete with a "the characters go to sleep at the end to represent the fact that i'm writing this at 3 am and want nothing more but the sweet release of sleep" ending.

the indentation is weird and fucked up because i can't find any docs to html converter that will preserve it perfectly so by god please bear with me

please don't tell eva that this happened.


It was karaoke night at L Corp, and the Control branch’s main room was alive with the sound of what could, to deaf ears, be described as music. 

In the corner of the room around a folding table, three friends were brought together under the promise of free food, drinks, and a show. Julian, the young Captain of Information Team, spun a plastic fork in his hand as one of the newbies belted out a pop song. 

“I think I should go next,” said Eva, Captain of Control, barely hiding a wobbly grin.

“I think you’d hate yourself tomorrow.” Griffin, Captain of Training, stifled a laugh under her own hands. The two swayed against each other like leaves in the wind.

“I mean, it can’t be that bad. At least you know a thing or two about music.” Julian’s eyes watched the two over his soda can. He glanced at Griffin. “You should go up again.”

“Ahh, I’d need another drink in me.” She cracked open another can of beer. “Can you believe Leesihan left so early? It’s only just gettin’ started!”

“Eh, she has sleeping to do. But us three?” Eva hiccuped. “We don’t have work tomorrow. Won’t hurt us, will it?”

Julian mustered a chuckle. 

“Yeah. I guess you’re right!”

“Hey man, you good?” Griffin leaned into his face and cocked a brow. “You’ve been checking the time, like, religiously…You aren’t still mad we dragged you here, are ya?”

“Yeah, I would’ve thought you’d be the one dragging us kicking and screaming.” Eva chuckled. “You sick?”

“Nah, don’t worry about me. Just a lil’ headache.” Julian glanced down. 11 PM—One hour left. His gut twisted into a knot.

“Methinks you’re lying,” said Griffin, leaning back into her creaking chair. “A true Julie never lets his headache get in the way of partying!” 

“I’m serious—really! This place is just super loud.” He glanced at the current singer. “And…the singing isn’t helping.”

Eva suddenly reached over to tug on his sleeve.

“Julian. We can get you outta here when you say the word. But before you do.” He took another swig of his own can of beer. “Sing a duet with me.”

…What was this? This…this was new. A new line—a break in the script. 

“...Eva?” Julian blinked away surprise, but quickly got back on his act. “...Dude, Griffin was right earlier. You’re—you’re gonna regret this.”

“Nah, now that you’re in the mix, I take it back,” Griffin said, a smug grin growing on her face. “Do it! Seize the night! What you don’t do now you’ll really regret tomorrow!” She slammed an empty can down on the table.

“She’s kinda right.” Eva’s words were beginning to slur together. “I mean, I don—I don’t really get to do anything sober. It’s all—Captain Eva this, sir Eva that, mister-freakin’ Perfect all over—I don’ wanna work and be boring on a Friday night! I wanna—I wanna sing!” He took another swig. “I wanna drink so hard I can’t move tomorrow. I hate this job.”

Julian couldn’t even focus on Eva’s drunken rambles, something that would’ve amused him the first three times over. 

What… was this? Why was this happening? Was the loop finally breaking?

“I…Eva, I don’t think you’ll be able to do a good job if you can barely stand as it is.”

“Try me.”

“Do it! Do it!” Griffin began to chant.

“I—do you have a song you wanna sing?! I—wasn’t prepared for this—”

“Whatever I know the lyrics to.” Eva reached over and stuck a hand in his face. “Do a Queen song, Julian. Do the one with—with the tiger. You’ve been so boring. Be less—less boring. And stop staring at me like that.”

Julian took in a breath. None of this would matter in an hour. 

“I…I don’t think I can.” He had been stuck in this repeating karaoke night for three Fridays in a row. He had begun to think he’d never see Saturday come again. “I’m—scared, Eva. What if I really, really mess up?”

“It’s drunk karaoke, does it even matter?!” Griffin whined, leaning on the table. 

“One time.” Eva looked him in the eyes. “One time is all. Please…? Pleaseee…”

If tonight looped back to Monday again, he…didn’t want to steal this from them. It was all they had, before he abandoned this timeline for good. How could he take this little joy away from them?

“I…and you really, really want to do this with me, right?”

“I want to do this more than anything in my life.” Julian knew it was the alcohol talking, but he chose to believe it. 

Besides, how could he take this joy away from himself? If it didn’t repeat, he’d finally see the dawn of a new Saturday, and the fun of tonight would be sealed in time forever. He’d finally have a good Friday night. A different one. One where he wasn’t following the same script as before, watching his friends say the exact same things, act the exact same way…

When did he last have the opportunity to make real, impactful regrets?

“...Alright, alright—I’ll do it!”

“Okay. Help me stand up, you bastard…”

“I’m—I’m trying. Hold onto my arm—there you go, now steady…steady…you’ve got it. Jeez, how much did you have…?”

“Perfectly enough. Now get us to the stage! Go, go, you’re slow!”

“I’m trying—you’re dragging me down, you know!” Julian managed to pull themselves onto the stage, in front of an equally drunken crowd. The lights blared, and sweat already began to trickle down his cheek.

“Yeah!” Eva let go of his shoulders and turned to the machine. “Where is it…urgh…Julian, get over here.”

“It’s—right there—here. I’ve got it.”

Music began to play over the cheap speakers overhead.

“Go, Eva! Go, Julie!” A blaring voice yelled from the crowd.

“See? Griffin’s got us covered.” Eva slung his arm over Julian’s shoulders, swaying side to side. “Just lead the way, and I’ll follow, like always.”

“...I’ll try.” He glanced to the clock. 11:10 PM. “...Yeah, I’ll try. Just one last song…”

“Oh my god, that was insane!” Griffin was still laughing even as they left. “He just went—blegh, like a waterfall! And onstage, too?! I totally caught that on vid!”

“Griffin, that’s so gross! Eva, do you need anything?”

“Bed,” Eva groaned, clutching his stomach. “Bed...I’m ssssorry about your vest.”

“It’s…it’s okay. It’ll come off in the wash.” Julian tried to glance at his watch, but Eva was clutching onto his wrist with a vice grip. If the night reset here, it’d be Monday again, the stain would be totally gone, and Eva would be spared the horrors of remembering. He tried to pry Eva’s fingers away from the watch, but he only groaned and tightened them further. 

“I’ve never seen him so red!” Griffin cackled. “In front of everyone, too!”

“I’ve—yeah, I’ve never seen anything like it.” Julian swallowed hard. But if the sudden break in script meant anything…would the loop finally break tonight?

Would…Eva be stuck remembering this forever? 

“Ugh…just shut up and go hooome…” His swaying head bowed. “I feel gross…!”

“I know, Eva.”

“I’m… sorry about your coat too.”

“I know, Eva. I can live without it.” Julian shifted his weight to hold him steadier. “I’m glad you got me to sing. Good change of pace this week, I think.”

“Yea, we totally need to hang out more! You’ve been such a hermit, Julian!” Griffin skipped ahead of the two. “My dorm’s right here. You two have fun—see you tomorrow, right?”

Julian glanced down at Eva, his anomaly in the cycle. 

“...Maybe. I hope so,” he said. “I’ve gotta take Eva back to my dorm. See ya sometime this week.”

“You sleep here. I’ll keep an eye on you so you don’t choke.” Julian lay Eva down on the couch. “Feeling okay?”

“Mhm.” Eva nodded. “Don’t leave…”

“You know I can’t promise that.” Julian sighed, pulling up a plastic bucket to leave beside the couch. “Just…stay here with me, okay?”

“...Whaddaya mean…?”

“Ah…I don’t know, just…” Julian rubbed his eyes… “Have I ever…told you this before…? It’s…almost 12 o’clock.”

“...It is?”


“No, dude…it’s 12:20.”

Julian glanced up to the clock mounted on the wall.

12:20 AM.

“…12:20 AM?” He choked out.

“Yeah. So…?” Eva rolled over and rubbed his eyes.

Julian could barely get his voice to work. 12:20 AM, the clock had read. 20 minutes past the turn of the new day.


“I’m not leaving,” he finally got himself to say. “Don’t—don’t roll over on your back!”

“Julian—what did you mean before?”

“No, no—Forget that. I’m—we’re free,” he laughed. He couldn’t hold it back. He began to laugh and laugh. “It’s been—it’s been so damn long. We’re—We’re finally moving onto better days. We’re—we’re gonna see Saturday morning, even! Haha! Do you have any idea what I’m even saying to you, right now?”

Eva stared at him wordlessly.

“...You’re a weirdo, Julian…” He shut his eyes. “Just shut up and stay with me…Stomach hurts…”

“I will. I promise. I’m not going anywhere,” Julian said, and he could finally mean it. The clock was continuing to march forwards, to his surprise.

“G’night,” Eva mumbled, getting settled. “Make me…some toast tomorrow.”

“Toast. Of course,” Julian said to him, crouching down and meeting him at eye level. “Toast and eggs. Some jam and a strawberry smoothie. We can sleep in, and—and watch some crappy morning television, and—and maybe we can watch our favorite movie.”

“...We did that last Saturday,” he mumbled. 

“...We did?” Julian paused. 

“You need to get your memory checked.” Eva sighed. “You forgot last Friday, too.”


i am scared, i want to go home