Now that I’ve had time to calm down, I’m posting my compilation and stories.

Sp00n and his girlfriend, Ali, got there long before the other guys. I was sitting on the steps, waiting for Gassy’s panel to start, when I spotted Ali’s super gorgeous blonde hair (not sure why that was the first thing I noticed, but it was), and my train of thought went, ‘Is that Ali? Is that - HOLY SHIT, THATS SP00N.’ So I got my picture with him and he signed my badge. I actually ended up spending a lot of time with them throughout the rest of the day, even sitting with Ali at Bashur’s panel.

The rest of the guys didn’t show up until about an hour before their panel. I was standing, talking to a few people I had met there, when I looked to the left and saw James coming down the escalator (I’m assuming the rest of the guys were with him, but in the moment he was the only one I saw), and I literally couldn’t breathe for a second. The guys were running around trying to get things ready, but I managed to stop Jordan for a second just to ask if they would be out after the panel, and he said they would.

The panel, of course, was hilarious. When it was over, everyone kind of rushed the stage. I stood in line but was pretty much standing in the same spot for a good 30 minutes. I was finally on the second step, nearly on the stage, close enough that I could see Sly, when a woman came out and said that we all had to leave. I was seriously close to tears - I had travelled 8 hours just to see them, and I was going to be devastated if I didn’t get to meet them. Sly said something to her, then he took the microphone and said, “Everyone meet us outside, we’ll take care of all you guys out there.”

So, we lined up outside. I waited for a while but I really didn’t care how long I had to wait, as long as I got to see them. Finally, the people in front of me finished talking to Sly and stepped aside.

I was so nervous, I had no idea what to do. I was just holding the minecraft sword I had brought, smiling like an idiot, too shy to do anything. Sly looked at me and he says, “I see you hiding over there! Get over here and give me a hug!” And he giggled that adorable Sly giggle of his and pulled me into the tightest hug, rocking us back and forth, like we were friends who hadn’t seen each other for a year. I had seen a girl kiss him on the cheek earlier, so when we let go I set down the sword and I said, “Did someone kiss you?” And he said “Yeah, I guess they did!” And I said “…Can I kiss you?” And he smiled and turned his head to the other side and I kissed him on the cheek. Then he turned and smiled at me, and I giggled like an idiot. He giggled again and pulled me into another hug. Then he signed my sword and I asked him if he would take a picture of us since my hands were shaking too badly, and he said sure. I asked if I looked okay, and he said “Yeah, you look really nice, actually!” Then he took the picture and handed me back my phone and sword and said, “There you go, princess!” I was pretty much dead.

Next, I meet Jordan. I was so overwhelmed from Sly that I kind of forgot to give him a hug (I’ll redeem myself at RTX!), but he signed the sword and I he leaned over the table and took a selfie with me. I told him about the book I wrote about him and his search for cocoa beans, and he leaned back and said, “Oh, no!” And made a truly gorgeous face.

Next was Aleks. I apparently went back to being extremely shy, because I just sat down my sword in front of him (really gently, for some reason) and smiled. He picked up the sword and kind of pretended to stab me with it like a dork, and I laughed. I asked him for a hug, and we leaned over the table. It ended up being very similar to an awkward first kiss in that our heads went to the same side and we kind of headbutted each other, and he said “Wow, that was a high velocity hug.” I asked him if I could come to the other side of the table for a proper hug and a picture and he said sure, but there was kind of a block of people so he said “I’ll just come to you.” So he came around the table, took our selfie, and gave me another hug.

I was beyond nervous to talk to James. I had been waiting around 4 years for this moment. It was kind of formal at first because I was just standing there. He signed my sword and said “Hey,” and then I asked if I could come over for a hug and stuff, so I did. But when I went over there I remembered that I wanted to show him and Aleks my phone background - a picture I saved from tumblr of the Marshall face over the windows field background that says ‘follow your dreams’ (I can’t remember who posted it which is why I didn’t post the picture, but if it’s yours let me know and I’ll definitely credit you!). So I said “Hey James, Aleks, look at my phone background!” They looked, and the second Aleks saw it, he turned back around without a word, and I laughed my ass off. Then James said, “He’s not going to take a picture with you now,” and I said “That’s okay, I already got my picture.” So then I got my selfie with James, and then I finally got to hug him. And, because I’m a dumb, I said, “You’re like my best friend. Does that make me sound like a loser?” And he said “No!” So it was lovely.

Seamus was next. I went around for my selfies with him, and he absolutely could not take them. I was laughing so hard. Eventually, for the third one, I had to put my hand over his to position the phone for him. So I got to touch his hand and it was really great.

And finally, Dan. I gave him a huge hug and almost cried. He, on the other hand, is an expert at selfies, and I will cherish the selfies we took together for the rest of my life.

Those few minutes with the guys meant more to me than they’ll ever know. They really are my best friends. I feel happier than I have in years and like nothing can bring me down, and it’s all because of these 7 fuckin nerds.