hey all! kris here! in excitement of the upcoming season, I wrote this oneshot. This contains mileven, jopper, and just a grumpy sheriff trying to figure out this whole dad thing with Eleven. Their bond has ruined me. it's too cute. Arguments are bound to happen, as youll read below. All feedback is appreciated!
by the way, the idea of El learning hilarious phrases and shit from her soaps? im so here for it.
The small cabin in the woods had seen many things since sheriff hopper had uncovered it once more. Arguments, laughter, love, a new bond between a gruff man who had been ripped of way too much, and a sweet young girl who had been given much too little. A new bond that was being tested tonight, tested hard.
"You are in a mess of trouble young lady, do you understand?" Hopper growled as the familiar blazer groaned into the driveway. A pissed off looking teen sat in the passenger seat, ignoring her adoptive father as he went on and on.
He killed the engine, and stepped out of the driver seat before walking around. With a twitch of her head, Eleven locked the doors just as Hopper rested his hand on the handle. He glared at her. She rarely used her powers on her friends or guardian, but she was furious. Logic was long gone.
"Okay, now the mess of trouble just turned into a landfill of trouble…." he crossed his arms. "Are you gonna open this door? Or am I breaking the window?"
"I want to be alone." Eleven spat back, her eyes narrowing.
Her curly brown hair was now shoulder length, and it was what she was most proud of. She had gotten a bit taller, not by much, and had settled into her new life rather well. Her year of laying low had been passing by smoothly, the rest of the party visiting her when they could, and things were looking up… until the stunt she pulled this afternoon.
"Oh? Is that so?" she sighed, and the locks popped back up. Hopper took her hand, and lead her inside. She looked up at him before quickly looking down. It had been a long time since she had seen the man this angry with her. "Well, you're in luck little one…." he began. "Because you're going to be alone for a long time, now." he let her go, and pointed to the beat up sofa. "Sit."
She reluctantly sank down, and crossed her arms over her chest. Mike had explained this process to her before, being scolded, grounded, or just getting in trouble.
"It's what parents feel like they have to do sometimes…" He had told her. "You get yelled at, you get stuff taken away when you do bad stuff, and then its over… it's to teach us a lesson or whatever… now that Hopper is your dad, he can ground you if he feels like it… but I doubt he will. You can just use puppy eyes and get out of it."
She smiled to herself. Mike was always so gentle with her, so helpful. He had even taught her the puppy eyes thing. It won the other week when Hopper had taken her clothes shopping and she wanted ice cream. Ice cream was another luxury she had been introduced to. It was love at first taste. The other party members were aghast when they learned she had no idea what ice cream was or how it tasted, but they were excited by the idea of helping their friend learn and try many new things. She was to start school with them at the end of the summer, and Mike told her she had a lot of catching up on being a kid to do before then. Hopper had caught her smile, and wasn't happy about it.
"I don't see what's so funny about this."
"Not funny." she said back, looking away with a frown. "I miss Mike…"
Hopper shook his head, going to the fridge to grab a beer.
"Oh yeah? You miss Mike?" he cracked it open, sitting at the table as he glared at her. "Your little boyfriend is the reason you're in this now."
"Boyfriend?" she asked, eyes sparkling with curiosity. Hopper for once had nothing to say, and cursed himself. His daughter was smart, very smart, but some words still evaded her vocabulary. And now he would have to teach her one he never wanted her to learn. He looked down awkwardly, and cleared his throat. "Explain." she pressed, and he figured it was his job to talk about this. He felt anger bubble up inside thinking about the idea of the Wheeler kid teaching her about this shit. No way in hell would that fly.
"Uh, yeah…." he said, standing up. "Boyfriend." he walked over to her. "Its when two ADULTS, get it? Adults… like each other a lot and decide to be a couple. They hold hands and kiss and do things together. Moms and dads start as boyfriends and girlfriends." he took a deep breath, and knew his face was red. "You are teenager." he reminded gently. "So too young for boyfriends, understand?"
Eleven was silent, contemplating this new word. Mike held her hand, and kissed her. They went places together, had adventures, and a lot of fun. Was he her boyfriend? Hopper said she was too young, but her and Mike seemed to already be doing this. She felt warmth in her chest. She was very possessive of the taller boy already, and the idea of him being called hers made her smile again.
"But, moving away from that subject…." Hopper warned and her eyes fell back to the ground. "You did something stupid today… very, very stupid… and I know what it is… but let me hear your side of the story. Explain." his eyes narrowed, and she sighed.
"Jessica was looking at Mike." she growled, eyes getting a dangerous glint. "She was touching him and talking in a nice voice to him and I didnt like it." Hopper ran a hand through his hair.
"I made her fall over." Eleven said, feeling ashamed now. "I used my powers on her."
"I didn't know about that!" he yelled suddenly, looking panicked. "You used your powers? In public? On someone else? Are you crazy!? Why didn't you push her or just talk to her!?"
"I was angry!" Eleven yelled. "She was moving in on my man!" she continued, very proud of herself for remembering that phrase. Days of her lives was where she got it, when two girls were fighting over the boy. She felt now how they felt then. Upon hearing this, Hopper choked on his beer midsip, and spat a bit, trying to regain his breath.
"I'm sorry, what?" He asked in disbelief. "Your man? Your MAN?" She nodded proudly, sitting up taller. "Where in the hell do you get this shit from? That man is a scrawny, shrimpy little kid! He's a kid! And so are you! You are kids! did wheeler say he was your man? I swear to god if he-"
"Days of our lives." Eleven stated before he could explode, and Hopper spun around, gunning straight for the TV.
"You are grounded, girl. For two months." he yanked the wire from the wall, and wrapped it around the tv set, beginning to push it toward his room. "No TV!"
Eleven rolled her eyes and huffed. She would have freaked a few months ago, but now that the boys knew she was back, seeing them and playing games with them was way more fun than watching her soap operas.
"Oh? No tantrum this time? Well TV isn't the only thing I'm taking." Hooper said angrily. "Your friends aren't allowed here, and you aren't allowed to see them."
"What!?" Eleven cried, jumping to her feet. "You can't do that!"
"Yes I can!" Hopper yelled back, turning on her. "Do you realize the danger you put yourself in today? The danger you put them in!?" he snapped. "What if someone saw you? What if that girl wasn't an idiot and realized it was you? You know Brenner is still out there! The bad men would take you in a heartbeat!"
"Nobody saw me!" she growled back. "Why two months!? That's too long!"
"Because you need to learn, kid." He said angrily. "I thought you could handle going out there more, but if you use your powers every time you get annoyed, for a stupid reason like a boy, then I was wrong."
"But Dad!" Eleven cried, following Hopper as he stormed around. "It's not fair!" she had gotten used to that name for him ever since he explained to her what adoption meant, and surprised her with news that she was to be adopted by him.
"Sometimes, Mommies and daddies get lost, or they leave, or they can't take care of their kids…" he explained patiently. "And sometimes there are other mommies and daddies who want to take those kids and care for them like their own…" he showed her the birth certificate, and she had gazed at it in awe. "This is called a birth certificate. Every person has one, and doctor owen's made one for you, and gave it to me…" he looked down nervously. "My little girl, my Sara… she left us… you know that… but you feel like a second chance… I love you, so much…" he took her hands, tears in his eyes. "So I was wondering if maybe you'd be okay with me being your new daddy? You'd be my little girl." She had thrown her arms around him excitedly, and they spent the night watching movies and eating junk food. She longed for a happy moment like that again.
"Life's not fair. You better get used to it." he stormed past her room, eyebrow quirking as he heard Wheeler's voice on the supercom, as the kids called it.
"Eleven?" the radio asked. "Are you okay? I know your dad was pissed…." Hopper walked into the room, and grabbed the com.
"Rightfully so." he snarled back. "She's grounded. Don't call again." he slammed the antenna shut, and put the device under his arm. Eleven glared at him from the doorway.
"Put it down." she said in a warning voice, and he met her gaze without fear.
"No." he said, shaking his head. "Supercom goes away too." she stepped forward, and Hopper felt a chill go through him as his feet were suddenly rooted to the floor. Blood ran down his daughters nostril. "El, you better cut it out…." his heart started to race. He knew the child wouldn't harm him, but sometimes raising a teenage girl was trying. One with telekinesis was worse.
"Put it down!" she yelled at him, and out of his own anger at the situation, Hopper raised the object over his head before smashing it to pieces on the floor. "NO!" Eleven wailed, and Hopper let out a grunt as he was flung into the wall. He sank to the floor, trying to clear his blurry vision as he watched his daughter pick through the wreckage, tears running down her face.
"You trying to kill me?" he grumbled, and Eleven looked at him with hurt in her eyes. He stopped where he was, feeling sudden regret for what he had done. She already wasn't to see her friends, and now he had ruined their only line of communication. His back ached from her throwing him, and the empathy quickly faded away. "How many times have we talked about this, kid? Consequences… your actions have consequences."
"I hate you." she snarled as she stood up. "I hate you and I don't want you to be my dad! You're stupid!" she yelled, still shaking with tears, and went running to her room before the door slammed shut.
He stood there, watching her go, her words feeling like a punch to the stomach. They had fights before, sure, but none had ended like this. Her words were leaking with venom, and sadly, Hopper felt as though she meant them. Defeated, he turned away from her locked door, and sat on the couch. He pulled the TV back into place, and plugged it in, knowing she wouldnt be coming out anytime soon. He felt lower than garbage as he heard her sobs from behind the walls, and with a click, they were drowned out by sitcoms. Joyce had warned him about raising teenagers, but he never expected it to be this difficult. He was trying his hardest, but somehow his daughter was still a mystery, in terms of everything.
The night went on, and the clock struck ten. Hopper looked up, and sighed. The argument had gone down at seven, and El hadn't emerged once, not even for the bathroom. He couldn't remember the last time she had eaten, either. With a grunt he got to his feet, and walked into the kitchen. Feeling hungry himself, he began to cook dinner. The pasta dish he was working on filled the cabin with a good smell, and he mixed in vegetables, even the ones she didn't like. Soon, the table was set, and two plates sat across from each other. Gathering up the courage, he knocked on her door.
"El? Dinner is ready… I know you didn't eat, so don't say you aren't hungry." silence. "Will you come out and eat with me? I know we got crazy earlier… I just want to talk." he walked back to the table, and waited. After ten minutes he sighed, and gave up, beginning to eat by himself.
A small click sounded from the other room, and she walked in from her room slowly. He took notice of her red eyes and tear stained face, and she sniffled as she pulled her chair out, took a seat, and began to eat. They continued this way for a few minutes in silence, and Hopper opened his mouth to speak. Eleven cut him off.
"Im sorry…" she whispered, looking down. "I shouldn't have used my powers on Jessica… you were right… not safe…" Hopper looked up at her, eyes softening.
"You're right… you shouldn't have… I care about you, okay? And we've fought so hard to get here, to give you a real life… I never, ever want you to lose that… I never ever want to lose you…" he looked away from her now, feeling choked up.
"You won't lose me…" El said, feeling the need to reassure him. "The bad men won't get me…"
"It's… It's not just them…" he murmured, and she looked at him in confusion. "What you said before… about you not wanting me as your dad… sometimes… sometimes I feel like im gonna wake up one day and you'll be gone… you'll run away… because im an idiot who can't control his temper…" she got up from her seat, and walked around the table before taking a hold of his hand.
"Im sorry about that, too…" she whispered. "I didn't mean it… I want you as my dad…" she reached up, cupping his cheek. "You're the best dad in the whole world… and you get mad, and I get mad…." she smiled a bit. "We care and that's why we get upset." he chuckled a bit before opening his arms. She moved to him and hugged him tightly. He rubbed circles into her back and let his eyes fall closed.
"You said it pretty well… I'm sorry for yelling like I did… but you have to learn how to control your emotions better with your powers…" he pulled back a bit to look at her. "You could really hurt someone, sweetie… it's not a joke…" she suddenly felt guilt well up in her.
"Did I hurt you?" Hopper shook his head, smoothing her hair.
"Nope, im fine… i've taken a lot worse… just promise me you'll work on it… please?"
"I promise." El said with a nod, moving away from him and taking her place back on her chair. He looked at her sadly.
"I still have to ground you, okay? Sometimes saying sorry isn't enough."
"I understand." she said with misery in her voice. "Parents have to teach us lessons… Mike said that…"
"Yeah, he's right on that one…" Hopper looked up at her. "One month instead of two, okay? And if you're really good and do everything I ask you to do, it might even be shorter than that. Compromise."
"Okay." Eleven said, and continued to eat her dinner. Hopper sighed, and turned back to his own meal. Yep, not easy at all. However, things seemed to have reached a resolution.
The next few weeks were miserable for the young girl. While Hopper was at work, she was given a list of chores to do, and part of the compromise gave her two hours of TV time a day. TV was what she looked forward to most, and when her father came home, they ate dinner together and played board games and read. She missed her friends most, and Hopper had explained to her he'd told them whats up.
"That Wheeler kid was trying to take my head off." He growled. "But they all know you're grounded and can't see you yet. So don't worry about them wondering where you are."
On the last week of her grounding, Hopper invited Joyce over for dinner. Eleven was very excited to see her, and the two spent most of the evening playing games and trying on the dresses she had brought over as a gift. Once it was her bed time, she gave Hopper and Joyce a hug and kiss, and retreated to her room. Hopper sat with Joyce at the table, sharing a drink.
"It hasn't been easy…" he grumbled, rubbing his sore back. "Especially since she has powers she sometimes can't control." Joyce smiled at him.
"You both are very stubborn… sometimes it's hard to believe shes adopted… teenagers will put your sanity to the test. That I can guarantee."
Suddenly, El's door flew open with a BANG. The young girl had a smile on her face and it seemed like she had come back to life. She made a run for the front door, and Hopper jumped up as it too slammed open. He ran after her, Joyce in toe, and finally caught the source of the excitement.
"Mike!" Eleven cried happily as she raced toward the teenager on Hopper's front lawn. She closed the distance between them in seconds, and with outstretched arms she tackled him in a hug. He stumbled, almost falling to the ground, but she used her powers to move them rightside up again. She nuzzled into his neck, and squeezed him tight, tears in her eyes.
Hopper stepped outside, eyes narrowed, and the Wheeler kid had the absolute fucking nerve to smile at him.
"You have five seconds to tell me why you're on my property…" Hopper snarled, starting forward, but Joyce caught his arm.
"Hopper…" she whispered. "Give them a second… please?"
Mike buried his face in El's shoulder, and rubbed her back gently.
"I missed you so much…" he whispered. "Im sorry I came… I just had to see you… I don't want you to get in trouble."
"Worth it." El stated simply, and pulled back, grabbing his shoulders. A mischievous glint came into her eyes and she yanked him down into a kiss.
"Whoa, whoa whoa!" Hopper yelled, Joyce letting him go. He stormed over to them, looping an arm around his daughter's waist and pulling her away from Mike, who now had a dreamy and lovesick look on his face. He rested her down gently behind himself, and turned on the boy. "What the hell are you doing out here? It's almost midnight."
"I haven't seen her in three weeks!" he cried. "I missed her!"
"Well guess what, Romeo? She was grounded!"
"Keeping her from her friends isn't fair!"
"Do your parents know where you are? Sneaking out of the house and going missing in the middle of the night? What if something happened to you?"
"I just wanted to see El…."
"Put your bike in the truck. Im taking you home." Mike knew he had lost the argument, and sighed, walking towards where he threw it down in his haste to see Eleven.
"Hop… it's pretty late…" Joyce said from beside Eleven. "It's the summertime, and everyone is tired… maybe you can take him in the morning?" Hopper glared at the boy.
"Him? Stay the night? Absolutely not."
"Please, Dad?" Eleven asked, running over to Mike's side and grabbing onto his arm. "I was good and I did what you wanted me to do and it's late…" She gave him the puppy eyes, as did Mike, and Joyce gave him a look too. He let his arms fall to his sides, and this time, he was defeated.
"Fine." he grumbled. "One night, that's it. You go inside right now. You wash up, say goodnight, and lights out… Wheeler, you're on the sofa, and if I even get a hint of you going to her bedroom… your ass is grass… understood? And if you ever pull a stunt like this again, youre toast... I have guns…"
Mike went white. "Y-yes sir…"
"Go on, then." Hopper said, waving his hand. "In you get." Eleven ran over, hugging him around the waist.
"Thank you thank you!" she cried, and grabbed Mike's hand, tugging him toward the house and talking excitedly. Hopper watched them go as Joyce came up beside him, rubbing his arm.
"I don't know what's gonna happen first… she kills me, or I kill him."
"Hop…" she said, laughing. "They're teenagers… remember what we used to do?"
"I know…" he said, a smirk on his face. "Compared to us, they're angels… but they aren't stupid… I got my eyes on them."
"You make a good father." Joyce said, leaning into him. He gazed down at her, his heart stirring in his chest. "You're just what she needs."
"I hope so…" he whispered back, and they both retreated toward the door, ready for a long night.