SUMMARY: The Pines family gets ready for the Homecoming Dance, it should be fun! But... will it be what they all hope?

The final short story! Will you be shocked in the end?

(This is to be read before the final chapter of "Layla's Lament")

The dance was coming up on the weekend very quickly, Dipper feeling extremely anxious all of a sudden.

He had his suit all ready, to be honest he was using his Mystery Shack suit but using a different tie. Pacifica had informed him that her dress was going to be a regal purple, so when they went tie shopping she made sure it was the correct shade. Dipper was sure to order her a corsage, picking white and purple flowers for her dress.

Mabel was a busy bee, her sewing like crazy. She sewed her dress with excellent craftsmanship. She decided to go with a knee length bright pink dress, the trim a bright yellow. She had added ruffles to the bottom portion of her dress that was covered in green, orange, and purple glitter, the ruffles making her dress look as though she was going to a ball. To complete her dress she found a bright yellow satin ribbon to tie around her waist to have a bow in the back.

"So… what color is George's tie gonna be? A rainbow?" Dipper joked when he saw her final product. He had to admit that it looked extremely professional, and if she ever decided to sell it she could probably make a pretty penny off of it.

Mabel replied as she twirled around in her dress, "I don't know yet… I'm thinking yellow to help accent the yellow in my dress."

"Um, sure, why not?" Dipper offered, him not really understanding accenting. "So, how is Paz's dress coming along-?"

"OH NO!" Mabel shouted at her twin with such sudden anger that made Dipper jump about two feet back. "I'm not telling you anything about her dress! You're gonna have to see for yourself when we go to the dance."

"Mabel, it's a Homecoming dress, not a wedding dress," he complained.

"I don't care," Mabel proudly said, folding her arms across her chest and sticking her nose up. "I'm not telling you jack shit."

"So classy," Dipper laughed when she cussed.

"Shut up!" she giggled as she returned to twirling.

Ford and Stan then entered the living room, Stan holding papers in his hand and looking annoyed as he read them. Dipper figured it was another bill or something of the sort.

"So, is that another bill or something about taxes to annoy you that much?" Dipper joked when Stan sat down in his chair. Ford continued to walk on by, distracted with something, although he did compliment Mabel on her dress before entering the kitchen.

Stan shook his head. "Nah, nothing like that. Besides, the government decided to relieve my and Ford's criminal records-"

"THAT YOU CAUSED!" Ford's shout was heard from the kitchen.

"- for being heroes of the world and whatever." Stan finished, him taking out a pen and beginning to write on the paper.

Mabel then twirled on over to Stan, trying to read over his shoulder. "So… what is it then?" she asked, her giving her grunkle a poke on his cheek.

"Ow. Don't do that." Stan mumbled as he set down the papers on his lap and rubbed his cheek. "It's a form I'm filling out to be a chaperone at the Homecoming Dance thing."

Mabel looked as though she paled four shades. "Um… what?" she managed to squeak out.

Stan gave his grandniece a sly smile. "Oh, you think I'm just gonna let Ford be there with the other teachers? Oh, hell no." He continued to fill out the form. "If George is less than one of Ford's physic books length from you I will know about it."

"OH MY GOD!" Mabel screamed in horror. "GRUNKLE STAN, C'MON!" Dipper began laughing, his hands going to his sides, causing her to glare at him. "THIS ISN'T FUNNY, MASON!"

"Oh, shit… I can't breathe!" Dipper howled with laughter.

"Hey, same to you, buddy." Stan quipped, which immediately stopped Dipper's loud laughter. "I was a teenaged boy at one point, I know what goes through your sweaty head. Pacifica doesn't have her father, so I'm gonna help him out."

"Seriously?" Dipper whined.

"HA!" Mabel then hollered.

"Whatever," he then scoffed.

Mabel then looked at the owl clock that hung on the wall and gasped, "Oh shit! I got to get the mansion and help Paz!" She ran straight for the stairs and after a minute of pitter-patter she returned downstairs with a bright blue sweater with a patch of Waddles on the front and pair of bright magenta colored jeans, her completing her outfit with a magenta headband and a pair of black high tops with bright blue laces.

"That was fast…" Dipper acknowledged as Mabel ran out the door. After she had left he gave a sigh, him about to stumble for the stairs to get to his room when Stan stopped him by putting a hand on his shoulder.

"What's the matter kiddo?" his grunkle asked.

Dipper turned around and heaved a long sigh. "I guess I'm just nervous for the dance…" he admitted.

Stan folded the piece of paper that was the form to be a chaperone and put it into is suit pocket. "Alright, I see…" he murmured. "The best advice I can give ya is that you need to think of the here and now, not the past. The past will hold ya back. It happened, yeah, but sometimes dreadin' on it too much will make ya forget today. So, go to the dance and have fun with your girlfriend." He then added seriously, "But not too much fun, I'll be watchin' ya on that!"

Dipper couldn't help but crack a smile. "Okay, okay… geez, Grunkle Stan…" But, Stan was right, dreading on the past will affect the here and now. Dipper thought of his conversation with Ford on how to move forward, it will take time obviously, but he would get through it.

And the first step is to have a good time with my friends at Homecoming.

It was the night of the dance, Dipper was adjusting his silk purple tie in the bathroom mirror as Mabel fixed her hair for the millionth time.

Mabel was once again wearing her dress, and she wore a green headband that had purple and orange flowers decorated on it. She had decided not to wear heels because she had admitted that she would want to dance all night, so she went with a pair of yellow flats. She had on light makeup, a little bit of foundation with mascara and eyeliner, and she had sparkling pink eyeshadow.

Dipper of course wore his simple Mystery Shack suit with a white undershirt. He had to clean the shirt what seemed like a million times because Orion kept curling up on it and getting his black fur all over it. He had combed his hair, getting out whatever small curls he could get, and he put on a light cologne.

"Look at us!" Mabel squealed. "If we didn't have a boyfriend and a girlfriend I'm sure they'd be lining up at the door!" She then clicked her tongue and pointed herself with finger guns in the mirror.

Dipper laughed, "That would never happen with me." He then fixed his tie. "Okay… I think George and Pacifica will be here any minute… we should get downstairs."

Earlier in the week Pacifica had suggested the idea of them using one of the old limos that was at the mansion. One of the women that lived at the manor had offered to drive the four of them to the dance, her even saying she'll find herself an outfit to look like a limo driver to be funny.

The twins headed down the stairs and entered the kitchen, them waiting for the limo to arrive. Ford and Stan were sitting at the table, themselves getting ready to leave to be chaperones. Stan of course wore his traditional Mystery Shack suit and his maroon fez on his silver hair. Ford for once was not wearing a sweater or his trench coat, he wore a similar looking suit to Stan's, him wearing a nice silk black tie, a crisp white undershirt underneath.

"See, Ford? Now you can help run the Shack too!" Stan laughed. "Mr. Mystery and Dr. Mystery!"

Ford couldn't suppress a sly smile. "It would be Dr. Mystery and then Mr. Mystery."

Stan gave him a sour look. "Oh, it is not too late for me to throw something on you to stain you up."

The doorbell then rang, Ford getting up to go answer it. "Must be your guys' dates," he figured as he walked to the front door. "They're in the kitchen, we'll head outside in a few to take some pictures." Ford's voice was heard.

George entered the kitchen first, him wearing a simple suit and pink undershirt with a yellow tie. In his hands he held a small box that contained a corsage for Mabel. For once his dark blonde hair was slicked back, although a few tufts stuck out.

"Wow, Mabel!" he awed. "You look amazing!" This caused her to blush a deep red and a hard glare from Stan. George then approached Mabel with the box and took out the corsage, it being an orange flower.

"Oh, it's so cute!" she shouted as it was slipped onto her left wrist. "Thank you!"

Pacifica then entered the room and Dipper's mouth fell open. She wore a knee length purple dress that flared at the bottom, almost looking like an open flower. Around her waist was a black ribbon that tied into a bow in the back, the ends of the ribbon with purple glitter for decoration. The top of the dress was decorated with a combination of purple and black sequins that formed a pattern of roses, looking intricate and when it caught the light they sparkled. Her blonde hair was put in a bun, a purple ribbon keeping it up, a few strands of her hair framed her face that was curled. Her makeup was simple yet very flattering, her wearing foundation, black and purple eyeliner, mascara, and purple and black eyeshadow.

Mabel then approached her brother and used her hand to gingerly put his mouth back up. "Glad I didn't tell you about her dress, Lover Boy?" she giggled at her twin. All Dipper could do was nod in response. Mabel then picked up the small box on the counter that contained Pacifica's corsage and handed it to Dipper. "You might wanna give that to her, Bro-Bro," she told him, a large grin on her face.

"Right…" Dipper replied as he took the container. He then approached his date, his girlfriend, and opened the container. He then took out the corsage and Pacifica smiled as Dipper put it on her left wrist.

"Alright, let's get a few pictures and send you kids on your way," Stan declared as he grabbed the camera from the counter.

The group went into the main foyer of the house (if you could call it that as it was just a small square that had the front door, the stairwell, and the entrance arch that led to the living room) and they took a group shot. Then it was individual couples that took their pictures, then Mabel and Pacifica, then George and Dipper, George and Pacifica did a joke one together, and then finally Dipper and Mabel took their picture together.

"We'll meet you at the dance," Ford told the teenagers as they begin to leave the house to go into the limo. "The two of us will be floating around, if there is any problem let us know."

"Got it, Grunkle Ford!" Mabel cheered as she gave the scientist a thumbs up.

As the teenagers got into the limo both Stan and Ford gave them a wave as they headed for Stan's car. The older twins got into the vehicle, Stan in the driver seat, as Ford watched the kids begin to drive off.

"What's on your mind, Sixer?" Stan asked as he put the car into gear.

"I…" Ford began. "I just have a terrible feeling that something is going to happen…"

The drive to the school was full of laughter and clinking of champagne glasses that was filled with fizzy Pit Cola.

"I do have to say," George had laughed. "We didn't have this kind of pop back in Michigan!"

"Pop?" Pacifica sputtered a laugh. "Who says that?"

George shrugged. "Michiganders. Only we say 'pop' for some reason…" he explained as he looked his half empty glass.

"I think it's adorable!" Mabel declared as she linked arms with him.

The limo then arrived at the high school, the lights pouring from the windows and it seemed as though the concrete beneath them was vibrating from the music. The guys exited the limo first, both holding a hand out for their dates. In a matter of minutes the four teenagers were outside of the school, ready to go inside.

"See you kids after!" cried out the woman that had driven them, her wearing a chauffeur's hat. "Be safe and have fun!"

"We will, Mrs. Benski!" George called back, giving her a wave.

The group entered the high school, the four presenting their ID's, even though the staff knew who they were, it was still protocol. They entered the gym where the dance was held, but not before seeing Wendy laughing it up with Lee, her in a short white dress and her red hair down and straightened.

"Hey, Wendy!" Mabel called out to the redhead. "I didn't know you'd be here!"

"Oh, hey guys!" Wendy waved back. "Yeah, there was nothing really else to do, so, heh, why not go to the dance. Looks like someone else also had a change of mind." She was looking at Dipper as she said, whom replied with just a small smile and a nod towards Pacifica.

"Then what are we waiting for!?" Mabel shouted. "Let's party!"

"Oh, not too much, I did see Stan and Ford go in a couple of minutes ago." Wendy smirked as she nodded towards inside. Just as the four peaked in they saw that Stan was by the snack table, him taking many small sweets while Ford glared at him, causing Stan to put at least one sweet back.

"I knew the love of sweets was hereditary!" Mabel laughed as she clapped her hands together.

"Are we going to actually dance at the dance or are we just going to stand here?" Pacifica complained, her putting her hands on her hips.

"Party!" the group cheered.

They finally entered the dance, the music vibrating in their bones. Mabel immediately started bouncing on her feet, getting into the rhythm, her dragging George around as well. The two began dancing perfectly in sync, it was as if they knew each other's moves before they happened.

"Wow, they twin more than Mabel and you do," Pacifica laughed, linking her arm with Dipper's.

"Heh… I've never been much of a dancer…" Dipper admitted, him rubbing the back of his head with his free hand.

"You like to learn… so let me teach you how to dance." Pacifica offered, her tugging him towards the dancefloor.

Dipper gave a large smile and followed her to the dancefloor. She showed him a few simple moves for the upbeat sound of the music, him mimicking to the best of his ability. Soon, the two were dancing to the beat quite well, Dipper actually laughing and having a good time. He offered his hand to Pacifica and when she took it he twirled her towards him.

"You know… this is actually quite fun," he commented to her as she looked at him with wide green eyes, surprised that he did that move.

Pacifica replied, sounding a little breathless, "Yes… it is."

The music seemed to have gotten louder and louder, the vibration rattling their eardrums. Mabel and George were dancing to each song with ease, as if they had all the energy in the world. Dipper and Pacifica had taken a break by the snack table, them seeing Robbie and Tambry dancing near Wendy and Lee, and Nate and Thompson were around as well, both dancing with a couple of girls from their classes.

Suddenly, the lights began to flicker, the music cutting in and out. Students paused and began to murmur nervously, the low rumble of hushed voices filling the room. A teacher goes onto the stage and taps on a mic, the feedback screeching the room as everyone covered their ears.

"OW! MY HEARING AID!" screamed Stan, him rubbing his ears.

"Since when do you wear a hearing aid?" Ford asked his twin.

"Since I got old."

"Hello? Is this thing on?" the teacher said into the mic, her tapping it, causing the feedback again.

"OW!" Stan screamed again. "YES, IT'S ON!"

The teacher paused for a moment so that the murmuring would stop. "It seems that there is power outages throughout town, if full power goes out here we may have to stop the dance early." A groan collected in the audience of students. "Now, now, we would make sure to have a makeup one, don't you worry!" Murmurs returned. "Now, let's continue to have fun!"

Dipper had hung to every word that the teacher said. It was odd that the power would be going out, there were no high winds or storms. The weather was perfectly normal… unless…

The brunette made his way to where his great uncles stood, him a little breathless as he pushed his way through the other students with Pacifica in tow. Mabel had noticed her twin's sudden anxious movement and with George made her way to him.

"Do you guys know what's going on?" Dipper asked when he made it to Stan and Ford.

"I know that teacher is stupid…" Stan grumbled as he rubbed his left ear.

Ford rolled his eyes and gave a sigh. "I've noticed the last couple of days some odd activity… like mini pulsations of energy. They're like little bumps in the cosmic continuum, but from what I've experienced in the other dimensions it seemed to be normal in scale…"

"Oh, now you mention some weird supernatural crap!" Stan yelled.

"I-I didn't want the kids to be scared something bad was going to happen." Ford insisted, him adjusting his glasses.

"Oh, please, you and Dipper wrote the book on paranoia and bad feelings."

The building then shook as the disco ball that Mabel had planned for the dance fell and crashed onto the floor, it shattering into a million pieces. Kids scrambled away with screams, them leaving a large circle where the disco ball laid. The lights then flickered off, the room going dark as everyone began screaming, following instructions to follow the emergency lights to leave the school.

As everyone began to leave in a panic, Ford and Stan made sure that the four teenagers were with them before leading the way out. Ford took point as he entered deeper into the school, going for a different emergency exit that wasn't filled with panicked people. They exited out of the building, but what they saw was what they had seen in their nightmares.

The sky was a deep mixture of black, brown, and red, as if the sky was bleeding from a terrible wound. Above there was a large yellow tear in the sky, large meteors flying through and crashing into the Earth with flames, the very Earth shaking with each collision. People were screaming all around town, kids crying, and sirens blaring.

"No…" Ford whispered in horror. "This can't be happening…"

There was then a chilling laugh, one that Ford recognized instantly.

"Ah, so this is the Earth dimension, hmm?" the chilling voice seemed to fill the world. "And Bill Cipher let it go so easily… tsk tsk, he was always the kind of demon that never had his priorities straight…"

"Get inside." Ford ordered fiercely. "Now."

"That voice…" Dipper barely whispered, a hand going to his head. "It seems so familiar somehow…"

"GET INSIDE!" the old scientist ordered again as he began to shove the kids back into the building. Before Stan could ask what was going on with him, Ford took his arm and practically threw him inside the school. Ford entered last and slammed the door behind him, his breathing becoming panicked.

"Mind telling me what the Hell is going on?!" Stan screamed at his twin. "I thought this whole Weirdmageddon thing was over!"

"This isn't Weridmageddon…" Ford managed to rasp. "Something terrible just happened… this shouldn't have happened…"

Bright blue lights then began appearing in the hallways of the school, them being circular with flowing white energy in the center. A leg then stepped out, then an arm, then the rest of the body. It was some kind of demonic monster with large red fangs and a silver pelt that rose like fire, and it was as large as a bear. It roared loudly, the hallway vibrating as more of those creatures began stepping out of the other lights.

"RUN!" Stan screamed as he managed to push Mabel away from another sudden appearing light.

Ford recognized those lights… it was like when the natural portals opened up in between dimensions. But how did he manage to control them? He couldn't think clearly when there was so much panic and destruction. However, what he did know was to go back to Shack and stay there until there was a plan to be made, the unicorn hair spell from Bill should still suffice for their situation.

The group made their way back into the gym, where more portals were opening. Ford stopped in frozen fear when one suddenly opened next to him. The same kind of creature appeared out, its open mouth precariously close to his face with its large fangs and dripping saliva. His hand instinctively went to his side where for thirty-plus years he kept his gun.

But nothing was there.

"SHIT!" Ford cursed as he ducked down to dodge a swipe from the monster. The monster went in for another swipe, its large clawed paw getting closer to him when suddenly a flash of energy shot at the beast and it howled in pain.

Ford got up and looked in the direction of where it had come from, the rest of the group looking too. There stood a person with a dark scarf wrapped around their head, only a few tufts of dark hair tinted by the blue lights sticking out, with large goggles over their eyes. They wore a long, dark trench coat with dark clothing, their boots going up to their knees. In their gloved hands was what looked like a pistol that had flashing blue and red lights on the side, its color being tinted by the blue light.

"WATCH OUT!" the person then screamed, their voice feminine sounding, as they aimed the gun toward where Dipper stood.

Dipper turned around and saw another one of those creatures and screamed. It didn't swipe at him as it dodged a plasma blast, but it grabbed him and began to drag him back to one of the portals.

"LET ME GO!" Dipper yelled over and over as he furiously slammed his fists into the pelt of the beast. He then held out hand as he desperately screamed, "HELP ME! PLEASE!"

Stan and Ford ran forward at the same time, both trying desperately to grasp Dipper's outstretched hand. The plasma beams kept coming, avoiding Dipper expertly, but the monster ignored the blast with grunts and roars. Ford was so close to the boy… he was so painstakingly close. His fingers grazed Dipper's hand as the teenager and the monster disappeared through the portal, the boy's brown eyes behind his glasses wide with horror and panic, it closing as both Stan and Ford crashed to the floor with loud thuds and grunts of pain.

"DIPPER!" Mabel screamed in horror as she ran to the spot where her brother was just in moments ago. "NO! BRING HIM BACK! BRING HIM BACK!" Tears dripped down her cheeks and fell onto her dress as sobs ripped through her. "HE'S MY TWIN BROTHER! BRING HIM BACK!"

Pacifica had her hands to her mouth, tears streaming down her face as her body trembled. George's grey eyes were open wide with shock and his mouth hung open as he slowly made his way to Mabel to try in any way to comfort her.

Ford's anger boiled over as he stood up. He was so close! "YOU!" he screamed furiously as he spun around toward the covered figure just as the lights flickered on. "WHO THE HELL ARE YOU!? WHERE WAS DIPPER TAKEN!?"

The figure then began to unravel the black scarf that was around her head. Her dark brown hair then flowed out in curls and a small tuft of hair on the back of her head. She removed her goggles, her revealing that she had warm brown eyes, a pinkish upturned nose and rosy cheeks, her cheeks covered with freckles.

She looked extremely familiar… she had the same shape of eyes as her. The upturned nose was nearly identical… But the curls and brown eyes weren't hers though…

"I don't know where he was specifically taken," the woman said, her voice seemed forced to sound lower. Where had Ford heard that before…? "But I do know that Magum wants him for something." She then glanced at Ford's hands, as if she was double checking something.

"MAGUM?!" Ford roared. All those messages… Dipper's journal entries… was Bill somehow trying to warn them about Magum? He then looked at the woman again, his eyes going over her facial features. "Are… are you…" he began slowly, his heart pounding in his chest. "Are you… related to someone named…? Layla Bartek?"

The girl then gave a smile, in a way she looked just like Mabel with that smile and the curls. "I am her daughter," she replied as she took off one of her gloves swiftly and held up a six-fingered hand.

"And I'm yours too."

To be continued in "Magum's Rising"…

Thanks for reading as always!

Stay tuned for the next story!

~Skye Hendersen~