I love Bill. I think my favorite thing about him is that he can only speak and/or interact with people while they're asleep. Even when Gideon made his deal, it took me a couple watches to notice that when Bill left, Gideon, Mabel and Soos all woke up with a jerk. Bill's this huge, all powerful, near omnipotent dream demon-but he can only interact with you in the mindscape, and that is one heck of a limiter on his power. It's a great balance and I love it.
Anyway, wanted to write a fic exploring that a little. And of course, why not explore a little Bill & Dipper while I'm at it? XD
"Until then I'll be watching you! I'll be watching you..."
That was all Bill got to do.
"Welcome to the mindscape, kid. In here you're basically a ghost."
It'd been fun to tease the kid, knowing for once someone else got to live in his shoes, dapper as they were, but you know what they say-truth hurts.
"And how can you stop me if you don't exist?"
That was the real question, wasn't it? Bill thought, sitting in the air above Pine Tree's bed in the mystery shack. The kid was writing notes in the back half of the not-destroyed journal, blissfully unaware of his audience.
Not that he ever noticed when Bill was hanging around watching.
Sometimes it really was funny how dumb they all were sometimes. Pine Tree spent an entire day floating around the mindscape, after Bill hinting quite loudly that's how he normally existed, and the kid still hadn't put two and two together yet that Bill was always around.
Again, the key here-just watching.
It wasn't all bad. Pine Tree and Shooting Star were practically his own personal drama show with all the trouble they got themselves into. Bill floated around and leaned on the kid's back over his shoulder, draping a stick-thin arm over his chest. Pine Tree didn't so much as twitch at the non existent contact, scribbling away as he tried to record down each and every detail from his feeble memory about the latest fun in the woods.
Kid actually managed to see The Hide-Behind. In person. Not just on his little camera.
Bill giggled, flicking the kid's sideburns as he continued to write detailed notes on the way The Hide-Behind screeched upon being seen next to crude doodles of his appearance.
As much fun as it had been watching the kid freak out upon seeing the thing on his camera after reviewing footage he'd forgotten taking, and then running into the woods for a new search-Bill was getting a little tired of waiting.
When the heck was Pine Tree going to go to sleep!?
It was nearing one in the morning and Bill hadn't waited a week and a half after the puppet fiasco to let things die down to be halted from his plans because the kid had insomnia.
Bill snorted at the sound from across the room. He glanced to the side. Shooting Star was snoring across the room, deep in sleep. So close but so far away! Despite his all powerful, endless energy-Bill couldn't get into anyone's head unless they either 1) Asked him in, or 2) Made a Deal, or 3) Hinted strongly enough that Bill might get a deal. Shooting Star had done none of the above.
Sometimes the limitations of being a demon were too much to bear.
Pine Tree on the other hand, Bill floated up and turned around to sit on the kid's shoulder facing away from him. He listened to the kid scribble, and smiled inwardly to himself. Pine Tree's head was still an open door.
And even for that, Bill had gotten lucky.
It was pushing the rules a bit to show up in his head when Pine Tree needed 'Someone who knew codes', but it was enough. At least for long enough to present a wager. Kid had no idea that Bill couldn't actually do anything to him or his head until the deal was struck, and Bill liked it that way. Pine Tree may not have made the deal right then, but he did! Kid had made a deal.
A deal that was still technically running.
Only idiots forgot to put time limits on their deals. Kid was his puppet indefinitely, whether he knew it or not.
Bill leaned back, resting his elbow on Pine Tree's hat as he spun his cane in the air. The scribble of Pine Tree's pencil on the paper was a soft and steady sound, not a hint of the exhaustion he surely was experiencing. Bill sighed, rolling his eye. Now if only he wasn't still limited by the sleep thing.
Didn't matter how much control he had over Pine Tree when he was asleep if the kid never went to bed!
Bill lit on fire, turning a flash of red in his anger. He threw his arms out and took a deep, calming breath. No, no. Couldn't get angry now or this was never going to work.
He needed to play this cool.
No child's games like before. Possessing Pine Tree's body brought Bill's limitations to life in a whole new way. A big blinking neon sign reminder that he was at the disadvantage in the main plane of existence. Taking control of Pine Tree's body a second time would be small potatoes. Temporary. He'd get very little done and likely be struck down just as quick.
Bill needed a long term solution.
Pine Tree yawned into his hand, and rubbed the side of his eye before hunching back over and continuing his excessive notes. Bill scoffed. Even the Author of that precious book of his wasn't so verbose. Keep it short and sweet, Pine Tree.
But he was getting closer.
Any second now and that kid would be asleep, and then Bill would really get to work. Bill stopped spinning his cane and held it. Real work.
Dipper crossed the last 'T' and dotted the last 'I' on his extended appendix for The Hide-Behind with another loud yawn into his hand. The clock on his stand blinked 1:20AM, and Dipper sighed. He'd done it again. Rubbing his face with the flat of his palms, Dipper shook his head. He closed the journal and stuffed it under his pillow before taking off his hat and lying down.
He rolled over, digging his face into his pillow with a heavy sigh.
"About time!" Bill shouted.
Dipper shot up in his bed, waking to the black and white surroundings of his dreamscape room. The demon Bill Cipher floated a few feet in front of him, arms crossed and tapping his foot on the empty air.
The triangle floated, continuing his glaring while he gaped for a full second. Dipper felt the heat of anger pool in his chest, and growled, "You!"
"Seriously kid," Bill continued, pointing the end of his cane at Dipper's nose. "Gotta' learn to get your beauty sleep."
Dipper shifted in his bed to kneel, his hands buried in the greyscale blanket. "What are you doing here?"
"Came to chat," Bill said. He kicked his feet out, leaning back in the air with a shrug. "That's all."
"To chat," Dipper repeated back. He stood up on the bed and pointed his finger at Bill. "I don't believe you."
"Okay, then how about this," Bill said, drifting across the room toward the other side. Dipper tracked his movements, and only paused when he noticed Mabel's bed was empty. Bill snapped his fingers and the entire room flipped upside down, sending Dipper crashing into the ceiling. "Boredom isn't exclusive to humans."
Dipper hauled himself up to lean on one of the attic beams, and glared at the glowing triangle. "You're here to talk because you're bored."
"Yup!" Bill said. He dropped his cane in the air and it disappeared in a flash of blue flames. The demon floated down to Dipper and leaned on the other side of the beam. He checked his 'nails' and asked, "So, what's new, Pine Tree?"
"Shouldn't you already know?" Dipper huffed, standing up and crossing his arms. He smirked and tilted his head to the side. "I thought you knew everything."
"Yeah, I do, but already knowing isn't the same thing as listening you tell me, now is it? But," Bill said, floating up. He snapped his fingers and Dipper leaped back as a checkerboard dropped onto the beam between them. The yell cut loose when it became populated by small flaming, shrieking eyeballs. "But if you want to kill time playing checkers or something, that's cool, too."
"Get rid of that!" Dipper said, scrambling back. One of the pieces started bouncing across the floor toward him. Leaving hissing burn marks after each jump. Dipper scrambled out of it's way when it made a dive for him and hit the back wall. "What is wrong with you!?"
"Lots of things," Bill said, snapping his fingers again. The checkerboard vanished in a blue flame and the room was quiet again. "What's your point?"
Dipper pressed his lips together and tried to control his breathing. Calm, he needed to stay calm. He crossed his arms and looked away from Bill. Dipper stared hard at Mabel's empty bed above him. He can't do anything. It's your mind, Dipper reminded himself.
"Why do you want to talk with me, anyway?" Dipper asked, glancing warily at Bill.
"I told you before, kid," Bill said, appearing in a flash to Dipper's side. He pinched Dipper's cheek and tugged lightly. The soft glow that flashed as Bill talked reflected on Dipper's skin. "I like you."
"Why?" Dipper asked, smacking Bill's hand away.
"I think the better question is how are you so insecure you can't believe that someone likes you," Bill said with a knowing look that made Dipper's gut twist.
Dipper regained control by clenching his fists. He shouted back, "Hey! I didn't say that!"
Bill smirked without a mouth. "Just implied it."
Dipper shook his head and turned around to walk a few paces away from Bill. He needed more space from the demon. "No, I don't trust you. You're trying to trick me into something like you did with that puppet!"
"Maybe I am, maybe I'm not," Bill said. He crossed his arms behind his head and tipped his hat down. "But you're never going to know unless you keep talking to me, are you?"
He had a point.
Dipper bit the edge of his lip, and sat Indian style on the attic roof. There was something off about all of this, but he couldn't put his finger on it. Was Bill really just bored, or did he want something? Dipper looked at Mabel's empty bed once more, and then back up at Bill. "Just talking?"
"Just talking." Bill teleported down to Dipper again and lifted his hat up. He ruthlessly ruffled Dipper's hair hard with his spiny fingers. "I'd seal it with a deal, but I'm pretty sure you'd wake up screaming."
"Quit it!" Dipper whined, batting away Bill's hands. The demon laughed and floated up and out of reach. Dipper yelled, "You're such a jerk!"
"Yeah, I am," Bill said, almost fondly down at Dipper.
It made a chill go up his spine.
Bill clapped his hands together, breaking Dipper's moment of fear. "Want to see me make a pyramid out of deer teeth?"
Dipper groaned, covering his eyes with his hands.
Bill floated above Pine Tree's bed a few hours later, the kid still fast asleep in dreamland.
He considered last night to be a success. He got a good few hours of chatting and playtime in before Pine Tree had had enough and "kicked Bill out", of his head. Bill considered that a great success indeed.
He'd give the kid a break tomorrow night, but the night after-well, he'd wait and see.
For what he wanted, he'd need Pine Tree's total cooperation. That might take time. Months even. But Bill was more than ready to play this game for the long haul.
However many days or months it took.
"Sleep tight, Pine Tree," Bill said. "You're gonna' need it."