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 A road less traveled., Colby and Max
Aofie
 Posted: Mar 11 2018, 10:58 PM
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Colby Lufton
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Spring 4th. Evening. Cloudy.


It wasn't often that anyone came this far into this part of the woods, unless they lived here. It was one of the reasons why Colby had chosen this spot specifically to build his hives. For now, he only had four structures. Three for the honey bee, and one for the bumble bee. He would have gone the all honey bee route, but he just couldn't pass up the chance to have fat, fuzzy little bumblebee's buzzing around his garden. They were so friendly. They just meandered around and collided with things lazily. He loved them, they were his favorites. Plus they did actually produce honey, just not as much as honey bees did, and their wax was still good for making candles.

He looked at the sun to try to guess the time, which was a little difficult because of the clouds. But that wasn't a bother, the bees were still happy even with this weather. They rumbled melodically off in the distance as Colby raked up some leaves nearby. Max should be arriving any moment if his calculation going off of the sun were correct. It looked like she wouldn't have to be too worried about getting burnt, either. Not with this overcast.

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Tecri
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 12:15 AM
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Maxine Smith
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Spring 4th, evening • Year 3
Max made sure she would be wearing a nice light colored dress to meet Colby and his bees, according to his information they liked light colors, so she followed his advice, after all he knew a lot more about those things than she did.

The books had just came in when Max was about to leave, she assumed Colby wouldn’t mind waiting a while longer, she was sure he was going to appreciate the books. She scanned the new books and she noticed that he didn’t have most of them. She put them in a bag and left the bookstore.

She got on her bike and rode to the address that Colby had given her previously. She was slightly excited about meeting the bees, ever since she moved to Ioana she hasn’t done anything else other than read and people weren’t into actual conversations, while Colby seemed to know a little about everything and way too much about bees. She stopped her bike and walked over to the front door. ”Colby!?” she shouted a little, maybe he was in the back and wouldn’t be able to hear her.

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Aofie
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 11:34 AM
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When Colby heard the familiar voice, he stepped around to the front of the cabin to greet his newest friend. When he saw her, his jaw nearly dropped to the floor. "Max! Well don't you look prettier than a buncha lillies ina basket." He clasped his hands together and smiled fondly. "Come on back, but watch your step. Some of the bees might be congregating around the wild flowers here.", he said gesturing to the various types of foliage that sprawled across the yard. "Stepping on them is the best way to get stung.", he led her to the backyard where his hives were waiting just beyond a rickety wooden fence. "I know what you must be thinking, that fence isn't going to keep anything out, or in." He nodded as he spoke. "But my brother has a dumb dog, and this is the only way to keep her from swallowing up my bees. It doesn't always work, but-" His dark, brown eyes fell upon the books she was holding. "Oh! Thank you." He took them into his arms, and laid them down on a lounge chair nearby for later. "I'll pay you as soon as we are finished here. Oh, and I have a surprise for you as well." He couldn't wait to show her his newest project. They weren't pretty yet, but he was aiming to eventually get pretty good at making candles from the bees-wax.

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Tecri
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 12:18 PM
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Maxine Smith
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Spring 4th, evening • Year 3
Max heard Colby’s familiar voice. She took a peek too see Colby but there he was in front of the house to greet her. His comment was nice, a bit awkward but nice. ”Thank you?” she said with a smile.

She followed him, always looking where she put her feet, she didn’t want to squish a bee or even worse, get stung by one. ”I didn’t know bees did that so close to the hives…” she commented looking around as a couple of bees seemed to be going for the same flower. She arrived to the back and didn’t even noticed the fence until he mentioned it. ”Ever thought of using a net instead of a fence? Like those chicken coop nets.” she asked. She didn’t have much experience but she had seen a few of those nets protecting something, usually kept animals away.

The woman looked around before Colby spoke once more about the books. ”Oh! It’s okay, doesn’t need to be right away, I’m assuming you don’t have these since it’s the first time they came in.” she said. New books always made her smile, the fresh scent of a new book was the best thing she could think of; perhaps Colby was just as passionate about bees as she was about books, it was just a different passion.

”Surprise?” she asked curious. Why would he have a surprise for her?
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Aofie
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 05:28 PM
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When Max mentioned the chicken wire, his eyes grew large and intense. "Max.", he said softly. "You're a genius!" He couldn't believe it. Such an easy fix. Why hadn't he thought of that himself? "Wowee, you look smart, but darn. I didn't know I was hanging out with a rocket scientist." To him, her solution was groundbreaking. Not only would it keep Rhett's pesky dog out, but also other predators to the bee. The hives were sturdy, so they fended well against birds and other insects. But once they were knocked over or opened up by raccoons, there wasn't much that could be done to protect them. "I think you just changed my life. I should name a flavor of honey after you."

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Tecri
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 06:11 PM
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Maxine Smith
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Spring 4th, evening • Year 3
He said her name and her reaction was to take a step back, had she done anything to upset the bees? Did she step on one by mistake? She really didn’t mean to hurt them, despite of being nervous around them she was trying not to make sudden movements; she had to admit that she had to read a few chapters about bees just to know how to properly behave. But when he called her a genius she just blinked, she was surprised.

She laughed when he called her a rocket scientist. ”Nah, I just read a lot. Chicken wire can help you keep predators out of the chicken coop so with the right structure you can also have it to protect the bees.” she took a step forward. ”I think the carpenter might be able to help you with that.” she smiled.

Naming a flavor of honey after her? She couldn’t believe what he was saying, it was weird, yet thoughtful. Colby was a nice person, he didn’t seem to judge and it was quite relaxing. ”Name it after the fallen bees that were eaten by your brother’s dog, I think they deserve it more.” she spoke. A couple of bees were buzzing near her, she became a bit nervous that the bees were going to sting her. "So...do they sting?"
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Aofie
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 06:40 PM
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When she said to name his honey after the bees that had been gobbled up by Rhett's dog instead, he laughed lightly. "You know, you're full of good ideas. I don't think Death by Akita sounds that appetizing though. I'm not sure anyone would buy that." He tapped his chin as he thought about a better way to word the scenario. "Maybe if we call it that in a different language it will sound more sophisticated?" He looked at her blankly. "But alas, I only know this one. Unless you count bee language! But I wouldn't know how to write that down."

Max asked if bees stung, and he chortled. "Yes! Of course they do. But they wont sting you just for fun. Only to protect themselves and the queen." He looked over his shoulder towards the hives. "Right now they seem mellow. If you want to wear the bee suit, I can help you get it on, but if you'd rather not..." He'd leave it up to her.

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Tecri
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 07:27 PM
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Maxine Smith
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Spring 4th, evening • Year 3
”Akita’s Delight might sound a little better.” she commented back when he spoke the name of the honey. ”Or Honey Kiss.” she said a bit confident, but her ideas weren’t exactly good. ”Naming isn’t my talent, but a different language might make it more exotic and people like exotic.”.

”I would like to try the suit, at least until I’m not comfortable around them. Maybe one day I’ll be brave enough to try without the suit.” Well, one day she will be brave if he doesn’t mind her showing up more often. The beehives seemed clean and well taken care of, that was his world just like the books were hers.

”But one day I’d like to know why you became a bee keeper, if that’s alright, I love stories, I usually read them but I would love to listen to yours.”

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Aofie
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 07:44 PM
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"Alright so what you're gonna do is, first, step into the pants. The top goes on like a regular jacket, I'll zip you up and adjust the mask." He said this all nonchalantly, since for him it was like a walk in the park. He looked down at her feet. "Cool, you wore sneakers, so you wont have to change your shoes." When he looked back up at her, he was grinning from ear to ear.

After helping her get on the gear, he took a step back to make sure there were no gaps for any bees to fly into. "Wow, you look great!" He gave her a pat on the back for encouragement. "You ready to meet the bees?", he gestured for her to follow. "Slowly now, we don't want to rile anyone up."

As they walked through the gate, Max asked him to elaborate on how he came about being so invested in bees, and their survival. "Oh yeah, one day." He winked. As he said before, it was kind of a long story. A story that involved him digging up parts of his past he didn't prefer. "So these three here are honey bees, and this last one over here are the bumble bees." He tried to read her face through the netting of the mask, "Are you doing alright, it gets pretty hot in that suit?"

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Tecri
 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 08:00 PM
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Maxine Smith
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Spring 4th, evening • Year 3
”Okay let’s do this.” she said. She did as Colby instructed her, first the pants, which seemed to fit, perhaps a bit too big for her but nothing like pulling the pants up. She put the upper part on and Coby proceeded to lend her a hand in zipping it and adjuting the head gear. ”Okay then. Slow and steady.” she said.

When he spoke about one day telling her she smiled, not sure if it could be seen. ”Whenever you want.” she said; she knew that today wasn’t the day to talk about how he became a beekeeper, they were there to watch the bees.

She walked over to the beehives carefully not to rile them up. She watched the honey bees, they were so close to her but she had the suit. ”They are so cute, and they look so harmless, well…they are unless provoked, correct?” she said as she extended her hand for the bees to rest on the palm of her hand.

He seemed to be worried about her, she smiled and shook her head. ”I’m good. Thank you. How about you? I’m using your suit after all, I feel a bit bad because if they sting you it’s my fault.”

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Aofie
 Posted: Mar 13 2018, 07:16 PM
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"They aren't entirely harmless. They do have stingers, and mandibles. Even if they bit you though, you most likely wouldn't feel it. Especially since you're protected now." He grinned and watched thoughtfully as the chubby bumble bee landed on her glove and buzzed around. "Oh, she likes you." He nodded as he spoke. "She probably thinks you're a flower since you're so pretty and everything." He pointed at the insect. "She's a she. All worker bees are female, and all drones are males." He leaned over one of the hives and pulled out one of the sections for her to see inside. When he held it up, more bees flew out from the structure and started to float around them curiously. "Don't worry, they're just checking you out. I'm old news."

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Tecri
 Posted: Mar 15 2018, 04:06 PM
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"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.&qu

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Maxine Smith
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Colby (Aofie)
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Spring 4th, evening • Year 3
”You know what I mean, like harming someone like wasps do.” she looked at him as she asked. She was now paying attention to the bumble bee that had landed on her glove. ”She’s so cute.” she said watching the bee carefully.

The bee few away and Max looked at Colby. So worker bees were all female, so they were the ones that made the honey. ”Drone? What does that mean? I know nothing about bees, except that they make honey.” she said laughing.

When the bees left the hive and float around then, it was all news for Max and a bit scary as well. ”So they are not like…hmmm going to murder me?” she asked him. There was a playful tone in her voice, but mostly surprise.

”You take care of them all by yourself? No one to help?”

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Aofie
 Posted: Mar 15 2018, 06:37 PM
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When she asked what a drone was, he was quick to inform her. "The drones are all male. They don't make honey and they don't leave the hive to gather pollen. All they do is mate with the queen." His nose crinkled as he fought back laughter. "Some would probably say they live the life. They don't have to work, and their sole purpose is to mate with the queen and make more bees, to make more honey." He put a hand on his hip and cocked his hip. "But it's not all fun and games, because after the drone ejaculates it's thorax rips open and then he dies." Colby smiled, which seemed eerie considering what he had just explained.

"They won't murder you. A gal your size would probably have to get stung 800 or so times to die I'd reckon." He offered as if it was any consolation. "But like I said, they wont do that unless you make them mad." With that he carefully slid the compartment back down into the hive. "Come with me, I want to show you what I've been working on." When they got outside the gate, he helped her take off the bee suit. Colby folded it neatly and placed it on the lawn chair next to the books she'd brought for him.

As he led her to his porch, Max asked if he maintained this all on his own. "Yeah, it's a fun hobby. I think I'm getting pretty good at it these days." He didn't mind complimenting himself when it came to the way he cared for his bees. "But this is a new one, a hobby I mean.", he said pointing to the wax and candle wicks sitting on his work bench. "I'm going to try and make some candles out of the wax eventually, just have to find a system that works." He lifted one of the tiny, hive shaped candles and inspected it closely.

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Tecri
 Posted: Mar 16 2018, 07:52 PM
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Maxine Smith
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Spring 4th, evening • Year 3
She looked at Colby as he explained to her what a drone was and was surprised about the outcome of the explanation. ”So they…hmm…die…I wouldn’t like to be in their shoes, regardless of mating or not with the queen.” she said looking at the bees and then back at Colby. ”Well at least they had some fun before dying.” she said with a rather innocent smile.

The thought of not being murdered by a bunch of bee stings was comforting. ”Thank god I’m wearing this suit then. I’m a bit nervous around bugs, especially if I don’t know much about them.” she confessed as she took off the suit with Colby’s help.

Maxine followed Colby. It was quite impressive that he took care of it all by himself, she would have thought he’d have some help, but apparently he didn’t. He showed her then what seemed to be his next project, seemed to be candles. ”Candle making is fun.” she said watching everything. She looked at the candle he had lifted. ”Have you ever planned on coloring them? Or are you making them all like that? Simple and all?” she asked as she walked towards the candle wicks.

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Aofie
 Posted: Mar 18 2018, 08:53 PM
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Once again, Max shocked him with another great idea. He was starting to really like having her around. "Max. You truly are a damn genius." He leaned against the workbench and soon procured a pencil and some paper. He wrote down her idea about coloring the candles, and when he was finished he hopped a little in celebration. "Woo! Maybe if I color em' like you said they'll catch more eyes. I could kiss you right now, thank you Max." Of course he wasn't actually going to kiss her. It was just an expression. Though she was very cute. If she wanted a kiss, he wouldn't protest. But he wasn't really into romance, and was mostly aloof when it came to flirting. But already, he was fond of her, and thankful for her friendship.

He offered her the candle he'd been holding only a moment before. "Oh, this is for you. I want you to have it." He nodded reassuringly. "When you burn it, it should smell a bit like vanilla. I added some scent drops into the wax. I'll tell yah. That wax smelled almost good enough to eat when it was boiling. Just like cupcakes baking, my stomach was growling, an'everything!"

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