The First Date (Complete!)

Spoilers for Cars 2!

Netbug presents a Multi-Chapter Mater/Holley fic with a little Lightning/Sally for good measure.

Because I’m an irredeemable sap, and I’m okay with that. <3

(This was going to be a one shot, but I kept writing and writing and writing and ended up with pages of notes… :laughing: )

Comments are love!

Chapter 1 (With a Chivalrous Bow) : … 63#p320382
Chapter 2 (Standby) : … 63#p320919
Chapter 3 (Stories) : … 63#p324734
Chapter 4 (And She Talked) : … 63#p331296
Chapter 5 (Questions) : … 63#p351566
Chapter 6 (Fairy Lights) : … 15#p370555
Chapter 7 (Simple) : … 15#p373579
Classified Spy File 8 (Epilogue): viewtopic.php?f=24&t=8863&p=374927#p374927

Chapter 1

As was the end of many, many best friend excursions Lightning and Mater had, the tow truck’s echoing laughter would arrive back in town before he did. Lightning, more aware of the concept of death, would drive with the tow truck past the old theater looking exhausted… but also laughing.

Still, the race car was a little more frazzled than normal today, since Mater’s plan to use his rockets for a quick getaway had been met with a few bumps in the road and a nasty dent on Lightning’s left side. And it wasn’t even nightfall yet.

“Dad gum, he almost done got us that time! Eh, buddy?” He nudged Lightning’s side. Still sore, the race car winced.

“He sure did! Uh… Mater?”

“Yeah bud?”

“What happens if Frank ever… you know… actually catches us?

“Well,” Mater sighed, “not to brag or nothing, but Holley!

That wasn’t an answer, but before Lightning could clarify, Mater had bolted ahead. Sure enough, the purple jaguar was stationed near the Cozy Cone with Sally, and Mater was wagging his tow cable at Holley’s side in a matter of seconds. Sally smiled at Lightning and waved him over with a tire.

“What r’ you doin’ here?”

“Finn and I have some time to kill, so we thought of stopping by,” Holley looked to the ground, “I’m sorry I didn’t send a head’s up.”

“No, it’s fine! It’s great!” Mater hopped in place with the biggest smile plastered on his front bumper. Lightning rolled his eyes at what a smooth operator his best friend was; he looked more like a toy car trying to get adopted.

Still, Holley’s own smile deepened dramatically. “So, what are your plans for the day?”

“Well, Mcqueen and I was in the middle of-”

Darnit, Mater. Lightning cut in. “We were right in the middle of the end of hanging out today,” he managed to say without tripping over the weird phrasing. Sally stiffed a laugh.

Thankfully, with a wink from Lightning, Mater finally caught on. “Ohhhhhhhh. Right. Yes we were.” The tow truck cleared his throat and bowed chivalrously.

“Actually, Miss Shiftwell, I don’ have much of anything today, and I do believe I still owe you that first date.”

Nice job Netbug, I can’t wait to see how it turns out. I wonder how much Lightning’s dent is gonna hurt, I’m also curious about what Mater was gonna say before he saw Holley. It was pretty nice of Lightning to kind of step in and save Mater’s butt, the sheriff probably wouldn’t be too happy they were tractor tipping…er “hanging out”. Keep up the good work.

I hate to say it, but I’m not planning on continuing what Mater was gonna say there in this particular story; I kinda wanted to imply that he was getting ready to go into one of his tall tales and got cut off. Maybe someday I’ll write a side story on Mater’s Great Frank Escape, though, now that you mention it. :smiley:


Chapter 2

Mater and Holley seemed to forget the other couple in their midst (which said other couple honestly didn’t mind) and cruised off together along the main street.

“Any new dents?”

“Well, it ain’t much, but right befer you got here…”

Lightning exchanged a knowing look with Sally and they both giggled. “Finn is over at Luigi’s,” Sally explained. “Siddley dropped them off and said he’d be back when another mission came up.”

Lightning frowned. “Wait, so, they don’t actually have a day off today or anything?”

“Nope. They just happened to be on standby. To be honest, I don’t know if they get days off.”

“Really?” Lightning looked down the road. Mater and Holley were in their own little world, but how long would that last? Sally caught Lightning’s sympathetic look and smirked, looking to the sky.

“Well, looks like you’re stuck with me for the rest of the day, and with Mater distracted so he couldn’t try to intrude on a date or anything like that.”

“Oh, what a shame,” Lightning replied with an equally coy smirk. He added a melodramatic sigh for good measure and shrugged his wheels. “Guess I’ll just have to go for a drive with you, then.”

“So we both wound up wit dents!” Mater laughed upon finishing his story. “Ain’t that something? Mcqueen’s probably going to Ramone’s right now to get himself polished up though. He’s gotta have perfect aromatics fer his races and-” Holley yawned. Mater shut up, biting his lip and staring at the pavement awkwardly. Holley blinked and took a moment to process why Mater had stopped so suddenly.

“Oh! No, it’s not you! I’m sorry, Mater. I like your story; quite adventurous, actually.” And a bit worrisome to think Mater was frequently putting himself (not to mention Lightning) in such a dangerous situations as being chased by an outraged harvester, but instead of including that thought she just yawned again.

“You okay?”

“Oh, I just haven’t gotten much sleep is all. We were investigating something with Scotland Yard last night and the bobbies just aren’t trained for the same level of undercover work as the MI6. Things got all pear-shaped.” Holley yawned once more.

Mater nodded, although he didn’t understand much beyond the first sentence. “Well, if you need some rest, I’m sure Sally’s got an open cone and-”

“Thank you, Mater,” she smiled, “but I didn’t come all this way to take a nap.”

Mater smiled warmly back, sinking a little on his tires. “You sure?”

“Positive. I’ll be fine once my RPMs pick up a little; loafing around Siddley for hours would leave anybody lax. Sooo…” she swiveled left and right a bit as they continued to ramble through town. Mater couldn’t help but notice that at Holley’s closest, her fender was only an inch away from his, “what did you have in mind for our date?”

“Well lemme thunk here,” it was Mater’s turn to swivel as he drove, but not as much for the sake of teasing and more to help himself think. “Lesee, we could go fer a drive around the county and I could show you the sights, or we could go to the movies later – you know they got this new one about a garbage truck who meats a bea-u-tiful car from space…”

He paused and turned to Holley who had been, and still was, smiling and listening attentively.

“Not nearly as purty as you, though,” he added. Flat. Like he was correcting himself. Holley’s smile widened and she was thankful when Mater didn’t seem to notice the hint of a blush that formed.

“Or… Hey! Have you ever gone tractor tippin’?”

She chuckled. “I think a tour sounds lovely, Mater.”

Mater and Holley going tractor tipping? Sounds fun. I hope she won’t get freaked out and accidentally taser Frank!

Good story so far. It’s nice to hear about their first date, and you’re quite a good writer. :smiley:

This was pretty good, I can’t wait to read more. I wonder what their first date is gonna be like…keep up the good work Netbug.

falls over nuuuuuuuuu

This is the second person to comment on this, so it’s safe to assume I made a critical communication error: I meant for it to sound like Mater was suggesting Tractor Tipping, and Holley was denying it by going with the tour idea instead. Sorry to have misled you. Maybe I’ll write them going Tippin’ someday in another story, but that wasn’t my intention here. ^^;

Chapter 3

“An’ to yer right is Flo’s. Best fuel in town. Of course, it’s the only fuel in town but… An’ to yer left is Finn talkin’ to Luigi about something.”

Finn was at the mercy of Casa Dela Tires, in a discussion with Luigi about Italy while Guido was prodding at the spy car’s tires and, incidentally, his personal space. Still, he seemed to be enjoying himself, which was good, since Holley had no intention of rescuing him even if he wasn’t.

It really was astounding how much Mater could bring out in the tiny town. He’d stop every few feet and remember some new story about how he’d met Lightning, or how Sally had broken down just down the road, or how something interesting had happened for no more reason than the character of the cars involved. Holley had plenty of her own exciting stories she could tell, but none of them were like that. None of them were simple. Like this entire town was. Like his life was.

For the first time since achieving her dream of being a full-fledged spy, Holley felt a twinge of envy for somebody else.

“You know, one time I accidentally pulled out Luigi’s battery with one of my carate moves.”

Luigi instantly turned to face Mater. “We do not talk about that.”

“Alright, alright,” he leaned close to Holley and whispered, “I’ll tell you later.” He cleared his throat and returned to his tour-guide persona. “And to yer other left, we have Sheriff comin’ this way like he needs to spoke to me.”

“Mater!” Sheriff barked, driving up to the intersection, but pausing when he noticed Holley. “Oh, beg your pardon,” he said to Holley before turning back to Mater. “Odis left a few hours ago and hasn’t made his way back. You know what to do.”

“What? Who’s Odis?”

“Odis is one of the friendliest cars you’s ever gunna meet,” Mater explained, and Holley assumed that was high praise from the extremely friendly truck, “but poor guy. Lemon, and he’s always pushin’ himself too hard.” He frowned. “I’m sorry, Holley, but I gots to go help him befer we can continue our date or anything.” He stared at his tires. “I know it’s not very gentlecarly of me…”

Holley wasn’t surprised because Mater would ask for a pause to help a friend. Rather, she was surprised to realize never heard much about Mater’s job. Granted, it was obvious to anybody that he worked in towing and salvage, and he’d tried to explain that a few times to Finn, but she’d never actually heard any stories about it. Those stories about another part of his simple life that she was growing quite fond of.

He started down the route towards the county line, and was surprised to hear the familiar engine of a purple jaguar catching up to him. “How about I just come with you?”

“Uh…” He grinned. “O-Okay.”

“Shoot, Odis,” Mater said once he’d started back towards Radiator Springs with the lemon dragging behind him, “I’d say this is the closest you’s gotten to the county line!”

“I know, right? I could see it! I could see it!

Holley giggled. She had binoculars built into her windshield and she wasn’t sure she could have seen the county line from where they’d picked Odis up, but there was no crashing the customer’s fun.

“Oh, um, Mater? I meant to ask, but,” Odis’ eyelids drooped a bit as he looked over at Holley, “who is…?”

“Dad gum, where did my manners go?” Mater continued driving while swapping introductions. “Holley, I told you’s about Odis. Odis, this is Holley Shiftwell. She’s my girlfriend!”

Odis burst into laughter. “Haha! Oh Mater! Ha! You’re a riot! Hooo, that’s, haha…” Holley stared Odis down. “Haha…Ha… Wait, is he serious?”

She smiled cheekily. “As serious as he gets.”

Oops. I guess I misunderstood. :~o Sorry about that!

It’s a good thing Holley didn’t freak out on Odis, he’s too nice a car to get shocked. And I was pretty sure Odis wouldn’t believe Mater at first since he doesn’t seem like the type to have a girlfriend like Holley.

Gah! I can’t be all obsessive over Transformers Prime yet! I still need to finish my Cars fic! D<

Chapter 4

Holley still wasn’t sure Odis believed her. Before she could get the lemon to stop looking at her with a raised eye-ridge, Mater had all but dragged her off towards their next destination on his grand tour.

After a few minutes in Ramone’s shop, he’d started fidgeting and gazing at the door, glancing back at Holley when he thought she wouldn’t notice, looking like he was going to blow an engine. When at last Holley bid Odis farewell, Mater jumped back into his default mania and whisked her away. She noted Mater’s inability to hide how he really felt with a private chuckle.

She yawned again, but if anything could wake her up, it was the winding path that she and Mater had started climbing. The change in elevation as they cruised along the mountain road was already affecting the scenery; sparse cacti in rolling sand dunes had been replaced by a plethora of lush trees hugging the sides of the pavement, and Mater had assured her that he’d “be a mini-van if it doesn’t lead to the best dad-gum view on the mother-road.”

But for now, it was all trees. And while Mater had probably made the repetitive décor seem interesting for longer than most could have, neither car even had considered the idea of an impromptu race or making one another drive into piles of mud and leaves, so there was nothing to be done but drive quietly or chew the fat.

Mater was not one for silence.

“So what have yous been up to, Holley?”

She cringed, and told herself she wouldn’t get too far into it. That she wouldn’t go over his head.

That she would keep things simple.

“Oh… Well, I already mentioned last night. Just a few other missions here and there besides that, both in Italy. One was back in Porta Costa; I’m sure you remember the town. And there’s this new programming platform HQ is migrating to-” Simplicity was already out the window and, unsure how to return to it, Holley froze up. “I’m sorry,” she mumbled, staring at trees that looked like every other tree before. Did Mater know how close they were getting to this amazing view he’d mentioned? Did he care? She probably shouldn’t have cared, either.

“Fer what? Keep goin’.”

“Thank you, but I don’t want to bore-” She caught Mater’s amused grin. “…Oh.”

“You know, yer even purtier when talkin’ bout yer spy stuff.”

Holley blinked. He was giving her that look again. With the goofy smile and drooped eyelids. That one that had horrified her the first time she’d seen it, back on Siddley after escaping the lemons at Tokyo International Airport. That look that made her wonder how she had gotten from that point to right now. That look that made her ask herself where right now was heading towards someday. There was nothing to do for it but blush.


“Well of course!” Like it was that simple. “I mean, it gives you the biggest smile.”

“Really? I was smiling?” Holley didn’t buy it. If she’d really had her biggest smile, why did it feel like she was smiling so much wider now? But Mater replied with an earnest nod.

And Holley talked.

She talked about missions. About other agents. About things that were probably too classified for her to be talking about. About how much she hated the coding software HQ required all technical agents to run, and how she could work much more efficiently with a notebook and TextEdit. About the Scotland Yard and their bobbies underestimating C.H.R.O.M.E.'s rigorous certification. The stupid, blooming Scotland Yard.

She articulated with her tires and looked every which way as she talked and talked and talked, until her eyes met Mater’s and for a moment she stopped talking.

That look he’d given her before had deepened. He looked absolutely smitten.

She blinked several times and stuttered a bit before growing flustered, looking to the pavement and finishing her ramble with an undignified “…So yeah.”

However long she’d been going for, it was long enough for trees to grant the road some space, revealing several rock formations and a quaint little bridge crossing the gap carved by…

…the most spectacular waterfall.

I really enjoyed it. I thought you wrote it great.


The next chapter may be a little bit. I got into Transformers Prime and it stole me Cars muse from me, but I’m working on it. :smiley:

This was really interesting to read, I like how Mater doesn’t get bored with what Holley’s talking about. I also like the fact that the waterfall sounds so beautiful, the first thing I pictured the minute I read waterfall was Paradise Falls.


Oh. My. Goodness. It’s an update! :open_mouth:

Chapter 5

As soon as she got an eyeful of the waterfall, Holley accelerated onto the bridge.


And the holographic monitor shot up from her hood, utilizing all the speed of her advanced CPU, filling with pictures of the waterfall and diagnostic windows and miscellaneous data. The one second delay of the temperature monitor booting up was enough to warn her that a shared server could crash if she continued her abuse of government technology.

She looked over the information she was gathering and began to form questions. How old was the waterfall? How far down did the waterfall go? How many cubic tons of water went over the waterfall in any given-

“Sure is purty, ain’t it?”

She looked over from the digital clutter to Mater. The tow truck had parked himself next to her on the bridge and was simply looking up at the falls, shifting his eyes to her every few seconds, harboring a smile no matter where he was looking. He seemed… she was unsure if the word ‘calm’ could ever apply to Mater, but this was the closest thing to calm she had ever gotten out of him.

Holley closed her eyes with a sigh, turning the monitor off and chuckling in an attempt to let go of how silly she felt. She was realizing more and more how little she really understood about Mater, and she wasn’t doing a very good job in her attempt to remedy that.

And she really, really wanted to remedy that.

Not only because she was sweet on Mater, but also because the prang of envy she’d felt earlier was still picking at her. Ignoring the rare occasion when his best friend was about to be blown up by disgruntled mafia cars with a makeshift death ray, Mater was happy all the time. He’d been able to not only deal with being pulled into espionage by mistake, but have fun all the way through the fortunate disaster. His threshold before growing tense was at nigh impossible levels. He could smile in almost any situation… and it was contagious.

If there was anybody Holley could relax with - that she could feel safe relaxing with - it was Mater.

Even now, having seen her jitter and correct herself on her tech-happy impulse, Mater looked confused, but not judgmental in the slightest. His growing smile even hinted at amusement. “What was you doin’?”

“Ah, Oh, forget it,” she replied, still a bit awkward, “It’s…It’s not important.”

And it really wasn’t.

Mater’s perplexed look ended with a shrug. “If yer sure,” he said before turning back to the falls and thinking nothing more of it. Holley also focussed her attention on the glittering sight, missing the chance to see Mater resume looking over at her on occasion.

He wasn’t quite as calm and confident as Holley was giving him credit for, especially with the Jaguar a few inches to his right.

Holley didn’t notice, and she sunk a bit on her tires as she began to really observe the details around her, like that there was more than enough water pouring down to fill her entire field of vision, and that the cloud of mist bouncing from the falls blanketed the bridge and cooled her frame after the long drive up the mountain. Her RPMs finally lessened after getting even more worked up than she made a habit of.

Soon enough, they were both transfixed by the falls.

“…Come ta think of it,” Mater commented after a while, but he wasn’t sure how long ‘a while’ was, “I hasn’t stopped at these here falls in foreeeeeever. Ther’ really somethin’, eh Holley?”




Mater blinked and froze up. The technical agent had finally caved to her exhaustion, lulled by the steady sound of the waterfall, and slept soundly next to her boyfriend. She was now slumped over, completely relaxed, and Mater’s temperature spiked at the feeling of her fender leaning on his.

He swallowed the butterflies in his tank and looked over at her, unsure what to do. (He doubted he’d know what to do even if he could think straight at that moment.) Holley looked so relaxed… More relaxed that she’d ever let herself become as a member of the waking world. Her frame rose and fell with her breaths silently, and Mater wondered if she’d been out very long before slumping over. Was she dreaming yet? What kinds of things did she dream about? Did she dream of being a spy? She’d already achieved her dream of being a spy, so would she still dream about that? Or would she dream of… he couldn’t think of anything else specific, but whatever else she dreamed, maybe he was there on occasion?

His tires curled inward, embarrassed by his own questions. Holley’s fender pressed against him continued to feel warm, sucking the mania out of him, causing his own eyelids to start drooping.

Maybe… Maybe he’d decide what to do in five minutes or so…

Wonderful chapter! I loved the waterfall scene, and you finished the chapter great. I’m looking forward to more.

Thanks! :smiley:

Your welcome.

Loved it Netbug! The waterfall scene was great and the ending was fantastic. I love how you spell some words the way Mater would probably say them. Keep up the good work.

Wow! I really like it! Your writing is excellent. What I love most is that you’ve made the Holley/Mater very believable… it was okay in the movie, but I never really bought it. In this though, I think you did a great job of getting Holley’s feelings for Mater across really well. Keep it up! :smiley:

Thank you! ^^

I’m glad people like Mater’s dialog from what I’ve been hearing; writing accents is quite the challenge, and I didn’t have much of a sense of voice yesterday. X_x

Chapter 6

Holley awoke to orange.

Orange ground. Orange sky. Orange light from the sunset basked the side of the mountain, shading everything in sight with the intense hue.

Speaking of intense… there was this strong warmth to her right that almost prompted her to close her eyes again. But a good agent was awake and understanding of her situation quickly (C.H.R.O.M.E. Handbook, Second edition, Volume 15, Page 857, Paragraph 4, Line- wait, what was making her so warm?)

The jaguar reversed in surprise, scrambling to recall how she’d wound up snuggled up next to Mater. A heavy sleeper, Mater continued to snore, but his expression faltered to a less comfortable looking one, like a child whose stuffed animal had been displaced.

For a big rusty truck, Holley noted, he looked adorable right then. Curious, she drove back up next to him and brushed her fender against his. The effect was instant, putting a little smile on Mater’s face and greatly reducing the wrinkles on his brow.

She was so flattered by the reaction that she had trouble bringing herself to wake him.

“Mater. Mater, wake up,” she cooed. She let Mater stretch, snort, and otherwise get himself awake while she checked her computer, relieved to find that Finn hadn’t been trying to contact her.

Relieved? Should relieved be the word to describe not hearing from her partner for longer than expected? Her inner agent immediately caught up with and scolded the Porche. Standby did not usually last very long. What time was it?

“Musta dozed off… We’d better get movin’…”

Mater was right. At the most she had a half hour before she needed to be back in town to-

“…if we’re gonna reach the view befer it gets too crowded.”


“What? This… wasn’t the ‘best view on the mother road’ as you put it?”

“Shoot, no! I mean, the falls are purty and all but, well, follow me!”

He sped off before Holley could reply, not that she’d put that much effort into stopping the excited tow truck.

A very short drive later, Holley began hearing voices. A few hundred feet later, voices became a throng of cars rushing around - preparing for an even busier evening - a restaurant by a cliff. A cliff that Mater had already driven ahead towards, parked near the edge of, waving Holley over frantically. Alright, alright. She rolled her eyes and drove over.

It was late enough for lights to be on at all the homes in town, but not late enough for any to be turning off for sleep. Like fairy lights, mixed with the deep reds and purples of a sun almost completely set. Upon seeing the view from the Wheel Well at dusk, all Holley could manage to let out of her mouth was a faint “Oh.”

Mater was right next to her to grin proudly.

“Hee hee, I told ya! It’s great earlier in the day too! Or when it’s totally dark. Or at sunrise… Actually, this is the purtiest view of the mother road no matter when you see it, but,” Mater paused. “I think this is the nicest its ever looked, actually,” he mused.


Mater looked over to Holley and grew perplexed. She was impressed, as he’d hoped, but something else was in her expression along with awe. Her eyes were wide for other reasons. “Hey, you okay?”

“Mater, those tiny lights… Is that Radiator Springs?”

“Sure is!”

But Mater’s reply didn’t soothe Holley as he’d expected. The Jaguar turned to him, biting her lip. “So we’re that far away…”

“Miss Holley?”

She avoided his gaze. “The truth is…” Holley sighed, “I’m on stand-by. Not vacation. Finn could need me back down there at any time. As it is, I’m cutting it rather close.”

He frowned. She failed to avoid cringing. She knew it. One doesn’t show somebody a view at a restaurant and not have plans to eat there. Her career had just thrown their entire date off, and it didn’t even take an emergency to do it. Just protocol.

“Oh… um… okay…” Mater gave a half hearted smile. “We’d better get you back, then.”


Mater and Holley both started back down the road to town immediately. Holley frowned sadly while Mater…

Mater seemed to be thinking about something unpleasant to think about.

Holley couldn’t tell what, and the lack of knowledge scared her.

Terrified her, really.