I’m sick of it all. I quit.

I came here out of admiration, appreciation. The first time I laid eyes on Thomas the Tank Engine—that perfect azure coat, the gentle curve of the wheels, the soft yet piercing smile on that round, round face—I knew he was perfect. And things only got better from there. I met all the other characters: Gordon, James, Nia, Emily, the rest. I watched the shows, I read the books, I bought the merch. I learned about Sodor, that island that Thomas calls home, and I expanded my knowledge of all of the mystical lore.

I didn’t want to join the team, help make Thomas come to life, myself—oh, no. I didn’t dare. I just wanted to be a fan. But thanks to the internet, I found others who shared in my passion. Together, we created Art. We wrote stories. We cosplayed at conventions, stayed up late into the night debating the finer points of canon, and even got into some erotic roleplay on the side. We bridged the gap between man and machine, and, in the process, made something beautiful.

But now I look back and I have to laugh at my naïveté. Those people might call themselves fans, but they know nothing of respecting Thomas or his family. They know nothing of coupling highballs or crossbuck sidings. And they especially know nothing of the sexual tensions underlying group dynamics of the North Western Railway. A dedicated fan would to know the intimate ways a piston rod might enter a smoke box, or occasionally, a caboose. They would know that a tram would never crossbreed with a diesel locomotive because they are divided by years of nuanced historical animosity. Yet every chance they get, these “fans” do nothing but disrespect the creators of the franchise, the effort that goes into bringing it to life, and, most egregiously, Thomas himself. They have gone—and it pains me to say this, for there is no greater insult—off the rails.

So I quit. I’ve had enough of this garbage. No more fanfiction! No more late nights welding costumes! No more train sex with other random fans! No more tugging the morning choo-choos! Thomas will always have a very large, engine-sized place in my heart, but I can’t bear to share that place with anyone else. Not anymore.

I’ve gone very far away, a place no one will be able to find my train smut. Don’t look for me.

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