So... I cried while writing this. It's horrible, and not even that sad, but I love Stranger Things that much. So yeah. This takes place after(ish) the events of my other fanfic, The World Stopped. If you haven't read it, go! Now! But if you want to read this first, basically what happened in the story was that El died while closing the gate, and 353 days later, Mike commits suicide. So yeah. Trigger warning, BTW. Also, if you have ever thought about committing suicide or harming yourself, PLEASE READ MY AUTHOR'S NOTE AT THE END OF THE WORLD STOPPED. PLEASE. Ok, now that that rant is over, here is chapter one! Enjoy!


When I showed up to school that day, I knew something was off. I just wasn't sure exactly what. First period in Mr. Clarke's class, I realized. Mike wasn't in his seat. It didn't seem too weird, necessarily. Ever since… El…. Mike would often cut class or even whole days. But this felt different. Weirder. I turned to Lucas, Will and Max, who now sat near them.

"Where is Mike?" I whispered to them. Lucas gave me a face. Max rolled her eyes. Will, however, simply looked far off, thinking.

"Dude, first of all, why are you whispering? Class hasn't even started," Lucas told me, shaking his head. "And anyway, this isn't the first time Mike has skipped school. Why are you even worried?"

"But-" I began, before being cut off by Will.

"Guys," he began. My head turned to him. "It's day 353."

"Oh no," Max whispered under her breath. "So that means-"

"It's been 353 days since," Will finished. None of us ever said the words "death" and "El" in the same sentence. At the beginning, it was because of Mike. That was when he was a mess. He missed school for a month straight. He wouldn't talk to anyone. But now... it is for the sake of us too. We didn't want to relive that. We never wanted to relive that.

The day went on in a silent drag. We all planned to go to Mike's house after school to cheer him up. When the bell rang, we all ran to the bike racks and hopped on. What we didn't know is that not far away, a gun went off. He was gone. Gone. Gone.

As we arrived at the Wheeler's house, I still had that gut feeling that something was wrong.

"Guys... I don't have a good feeling about this," I warned them as I got off of my bike.

"Stop being such a baby! What's the worst that could happen? The demogorgon would appear?" Lucas snapped back. Will cringed. He still got memories from that place. We rang the doorbell, and expected someone to open the door. No one answered. I shrugged. Just as we were about to turn around, Karen opened the door.

"I'm sorry boys! I just got out of the shower," she smiled at us. "Mike's in the basement."

"Thanks, Mrs. Wheeler," Will smiled back. We all raced to the basement, smiles on our faces.

"Let me go first," Max insisted. Despite Mike's initial thoughts about Max, the two had grown closer, helping him with a lot of feelings that we could never understand. "You guys will just overwhelm him." I wanted to disagree, but I couldn't. We nodded our heads, and she went down the stairs, gently. We waited for about 30 before Max called up to us in a shaky voice.

"Guys...? You might wanna come down here," she whispered. I looked at Lucas, eyebrows scrunched. He shrugged and went downstairs.

"Holy..." he murmured. I looked at Will, alarmed and went down the stairs. That is when I saw a sight worse than I could have imagined. In the tent where El used to sleep, the one that Mike refused to take down, was Mike, slumped over, in a pool of blood. Gun by his side. Supercomm on the other. Will came down the steps, quickly, and looked around. When he looked over at Mike, his face went pale. "I'm gonna throw up," he muttered before racing back up the stairs. I glanced over at Max and Lucas. Tears were in their eyes and streaming down their cheeks. I crossed over to the table in his basement, in shock. That was when I found a piece of paper, scribbled on in Mike's handwriting.

I can't do it anymore. It's been 353 days. She promised. I love her.

Tears filled my eyes. Before I knew it, I was sobbing. The most amazing dungeon master on Earth. My best friend. The person I trusted the most. Gone. Gone. Gone.

"We should get Mrs. Wheeler," Max choked through her tears. We all nodded. We walked up the stairs, carefully, walking to the kitchen.

We didn't expect to see Karen crying, Will, still pale, beside her. We looked at each other, and that's when we realized that she already knew. She looked up at us, eyes red, and gestured for us to come to her. She wrapped us in her arms, and we all cried. Because they were gone. Gone. Gone.

Mike's funeral was small and quiet. Not a public event, like Will's. Joyce, Hopper, Nancy, Steve, Jonathan, Lucas, Max, Will, Holly, Karen, Ted, and I. That's all. Hopper took El's body from that place when she died. They buried her at the quarry where she had saved Mike. We buried him next to her. The way both of them would have wanted it. We lay flowers by their graves, and we all cried, together. But we'll move on. Even though they are gone. Gone. Gone.

Dear El and Mike,

This is impossible. It's impossible to wake up in the morning, every day, grab my supercomm, ready to talk to you, Mike, but then remember that you are gone. Troy won't let us hear the end of it. Says that it's better off without you. It isn't. It never will be. And why, you ask, am I sounding so deep? Because when two people that you love die, you are never the same. I can't joke around anymore. I know from experience. I could go on about how we miss you and wish both of you were here. We do. But we can't go back in time and change what happened. So, here I am. I can't promise you that I won't move on. I can't say whether or not I'll be the same as I used to be. But I can say that I will never forget you. Either of you. Even though you are gone. Gone. Gone.

Miss you both,


The end... ok, now I'm going to start writing Chapter 2, which should be out at the end of the day or tomorrow. Here is my schedule for updates so far-

TODAY- Chap 1- Dustin
TOMMOROW- Chap 2- Lucas
12/17- Chap 3- Max
12/23- Chap 4- Will
12/25- Chap 5- Steve and Jonathan
12/27- Chap 6- Joyce
12/29- Chap 7- Nancy
12/31- Chap 8- Hopper
1/2- Chap 9- SECRET

It's approximate, but that is I hope to update. I might ask for opinions, so please check my profile regularly for polls. Thank you so much for reading!