Oof it's been a minute. Sorry guys! Life just got hectic here at home. Hope everyone's staying safe!

"Why exactly did you tell him that you were gonna slap me?" Dustin asked. Max was trying to keep her laughter in, Will and Hopper were grinning from ear to ear, and Lucas just looked confused.

"Because of your little plan." She said, shrugging. He made a face, and then looked at Mike.

"That plan?" He squeaked.

"Mm hm." Mike nodded.

"What was the result?" He asked immediately.

"You're a dick, for starters, just wanna clarify that." El said as Mike made his way over to them. He draped an arm around El's shoulder and she leaned into him.

"So rude." Dustin whined.

"They're gonna get married!" Holly shrieked from the other side of the house. Max raised an eyebrow.

"Did you tell her?" She stage-whispered.

"She kissed him and made him wet his pants." Hopper quipped.

"Um, no, that's not how that went, thank you very much." Mike pointed at Hopper who snickered. The other three just stared at the two.

"We were outside talking, and I just said screw it- I really said fuck it, " She whispered, "and kissed him. Will saw us and yelled and scared us, and Mike fell off the porch into the snow and it made his pants look like he peed himself."

"You always were a big ass scaredy-cat." Max shook her head. "So are you two like together or?" They nodded, grinning, and Max squealed -which was very unlike her- and tackled them so hard they almost fell over. She clung to Mike like a monkey but had her arms wrapped around them both.

"Jesus, Max." Mike grunted a little, holding her up. El giggled.

"I better be the maid of honor at your wedding." Mike groaned and dropped her. She let out a little huff and smacked him.

"If I had fell on my ass I'd have really made you piss yourself."

"Wouldn't be the first time." He muttered to himself, but El heard him and looked at him, eyes wide.

"Max made you pee yourself?" She asked. Max started cackling and Mike's cheeks turned a bright shade of red. Mike's phone started ringing before he could say anything else and he immediately answered, not even paying attention as to who it was.

"Hello?" He squeaked.

"Why do you sound like a pig sucked helium out of a balloon and got kicked in the nuts?"

"Goddamn it Richie, you know what, I'm gonna ignore that statement and thank you because that was perfect timing." Max laughed again and El giggled.

"You're welcome, couso- probable half-bro!" Mike snickered. "Why though?"

"Uh, no reason. Anyways, what you want." Mike put the phone on speaker.

"Edwin, father and I will be coming down for our two week break! Mother dearest is too busy whoring around like her sister!" El made a face.

"What the hell." She deadpanned.

"Told you mom was a whore." Mike replied quietly.

"Who is that? Is that Carrot because it doesn't sound like her."

"No, Richie." Mike chuckled.

"Is it your girlfriend then?"

"Yes." El said for him.

"Shit! You go Mikey boy! Hello Mike's girlfriend, did you know that Mike sucked a bottle until he was-"

"Oop, gotta go Richie, bye!" He hung up as Richie laughed. He pouted. "Why is everyone telling embarrassing stories about me?"

"I have a few myself, you know." Joyce said, walking into the room, wiggling her eyebrows.

"Please don't." He begged. "I embarrass myself in front of her already."

"Like when you crawled into the back seat from the front and looked like you were gonna split in half?" She asked, grinning.


Thursday, November 30, 2017

True to her word, Nancy and Steve were calling around and getting information, but Mike kind of already took care of it, as he'd sent Adriana their way. Well, not really, he just gave her Nancy's number and as far as he knew, they've been talking a good bit.

The group had immediately gone back to work, studying for their midterms. Mike and Dustin probably had the worst of it, as they had three midterms, two on one day, one on another, and a three page essay due, and they both had to learn a song and make a video of them performing it and submit it by midnight on Friday, since that would be the last day before winter break, which would last all the way into January.

El had a midterm in every class, but she'd explained to them that they weren't very difficult, as she had algebra, physical science, economics and some English thing they could never remember the name of. All she had to do was study for the tests, and edit pictures. Max had calculus and computer science theory to do, and one two page essays on computer architecture. Lucas only had two tests this week too, but he had four labs. One every morning up until Friday and he was done. Will had two animation projects he had to do that would count as a test grade, and he was pretty happy with it, because he was done before everyone else.

"Mike! What song do you want to do?" Dustin whined, walking into the living room from the kitchen. Mike's face was buried in the cushions and he didn't respond. Max and El came downstairs together and Max raised her eyebrow at Dustin, who waved his hands dramatically at Mike.

"You think he's actually suffocated himself this time?" Max asked El.

"I hope not." She said. She crouched next to Mike's head and nudged him. He grunted. "He's fine. Mike, you good?" He mumbled something into the cushion. "What? You know I can't understand when you do that." He groaned and turned his head, keeping his eyes closed.

"I have a headache." He grumbled. "And I don't fucking care what song we do, Dustin. Just chose something we already know."

"But we're supposed to do one we don't know."

"It's not like he's gonna know!" Mike threw a pillow at him. Dustin huffed.

"Are you still pissed about the Abigail thing? Because I've said I'm sorry a million times now, dude."

"No." Mike groaned, rolling onto his back. "I just said my head hurts. Leave me alone." He looked at Dustin, who stared at him expectantly. "Let's just do Imagine by John Lennon." Mike sighed.

"Really?" Dustin asked, excitedly.

"Yeah, I know the guitar version."

"Good, because we were originally supposed to use a different instrument anyways. I'll go get my laptop ready to record." He ran down to the basement and Mike sighed.

"You wanna come watch us? Make sure I don't like, kill him while I'm down there?" El snorted and nodded, getting up with him.

"I'm gonna go see if we have Tylenol or anything." He nodded and kissed her cheek, following Dustin. She came down with a cup of water and two pills as he was tuning his guitar. He gave her a smile and took them quickly, finishing the cup of water in two big gulps. "You fucking fish." She muttered. He snorted and grinned at her as she jumped onto a bean bag.

Mike and Dustin managed to do the song in only three takes, which Mike was thankful for, because as soon as they were done, he showered and passed out in his bed. It was only ten, when he usually went to bed at twelve or one most nights.

"How much you wanna bet he's getting sick?" Max said, stealing a handful of popcorn from Will's bowl.

"Ugh, doesn't he always get sick as fuck around this time?" Lucas asked.

"It's usually when break starts and we're all back home." She said.

"He gets sick every year around this time?" El asked, making a face.

"Yeah, it's a constant thing, since he was little I think. He doesn't get sick much, just a few colds here and there but this one hits him hard. He's difficult to take care of most of the time, I don't know how his mom did it." She shook her head. She frowned. "She won't be taking care of him anymore, that's for damn sure. The fucking bitch." She dug her hand in the popcorn aggressively.

"I can." El said, shrugging. "I mean, I am his girlfriend and roommate so..."

"I'll help too." Max told her. "Because you'll need it. He's a big ass baby when he's sick too." El chuckled.

"I just lay miserably in my bed when I get sick, 'cause I didn't want anyone helping me and shit."

"Mike'll wait on you hand and foot if you get sick." Will said. "It's just his nature, he does it for us too." El smiled. They talked for a few more minutes and El went to bed herself, slightly worried about him getting sick.

Friday, December 1, 2017

5 PM

"Where's Mike?" El asked, walking inside after getting off work. She'd gone in later so she had to work a couple extra hours. "His truck isn't here."

"He went to the library. You just missed him."Dustin said.

"Why'd he go to the library? And he took his truck?"

"He had to do a little bit of research for his essay." Lucas explained. Then he shrugged. "He's probably just being a lazy ass." She rolled her eyes at that and nodded.

"Oh okay. I'm gonna go shower and start cooking soon."

"Ooh what are you cooking?" Will asked, grinning at her.

"Food." She replied, making her way upstairs.

"No really? I thought you were gonna cook my shoes!" El stopped and looked over the railing,

"Didn't that technically happen on Spongebob?"

"I think so." He snorted. She chuckled and went upstairs.

Two hours later, El had taken her shower and had already finished dinner, and Mike still wasn't back and he wasn't answering his texts.

"He's probably turned his phone off, Max, calm down." Lucas said as Max typed furiously on her phone.

"He doesn't do that, Lucas." She grumbled. "He puts it on vibrate when he's at the library."

"I'm gonna go check on him." El said, standing up. "Or at least see if he's still at the library." She slipped on her jacket. "Are you sure you'll be okay to walk there?" Will asked, furrowing his brows. She nodded.

"Yeah, it's only a couple blocks away. I'll text you when I get there." She said, putting her shoes on, grabbing her phone and walking out the door. It didn't take her but ten minutes to get there and she saw his truck in the parking lot. She texted Will and told him she was there and that he was too. She walked in and almost immediately, one of the workers walked up to her.

"Do you know a tall, dark haired boy with curly hair?" She asked. El nodded.

"That's my boyfriend." She told her.

"I think he's sick or something, because he worked for about an hour and then laid his head down and went to sleep. I see him here a lot and he was really pale in comparison." El nodded.

"I think he is too, actually. I'll take care of him." The girl pointed to the section he was in and she thanked her before heading that way. He was the only one there, sitting at a table with his laptop on the table next to an open book, with his head down. She smiled a small smile and knelt next to him once she reached him. She tapped his shoulder a couple times. "Mike." She whispered. "Mikey, wake up." She poked him a little harder and he grunted and turned his head towards her. He opened his eyes slowly and blinked a couple times. She smiled at him. "Hey sleepy head, let's get you home." He sat up and rubbed his eyes.

"Shit, I didn't mean to fall asleep. My head started hurting again." He mumbled as he started packing his stuff up. El closed the book and went and put it back in it's spot, as she'd had to use it before once. She came back and he was standing, his bag over one shoulder. She stood in front of him and leaned up, kissing him on the cheek.

"Come on, you're going to eat and then go to bed as soon as we get home."

He let out a small whine, "I have to edit my paper and send it in. And I'm not hungry."

"I'll help you, okay? And you need to eat a little something. Have you eaten today?" She asked. "Gimme your keys." He reached into his pocket and handed them to her. He nodded.

"This morning." She sighed quietly and patted his arm as he rounded the truck to the other side, getting in at the same time as her.

"Max wasn't kidding when she said it hits you hard, huh?"

"Huh?" He made a face. "Max?"

"She told me you were getting sick." She explained. He started grumbling to himself and leaned his head on the window. "Do you still have a headache?" He nodded slightly. "I'll get you something and I'll make you something to eat. I made spaghetti but I'll make you something else if you want."

"I don't want anything." He whined. She gave him a look and he sighed. "I'll just eat some 'sgehtti." She smiled. "But when I puke it up I blame you." She snorted loudly and he grinned a dopey little grin.

"When you puke, I'll hold your long ass hair back for you." He chuckled.

"Thanks in advance." He muttered and let out a loud sneeze. "Fuck."

"Bless you." He smiled at her in thanks.

When they got back to the house a few minutes later, Max was waiting with Tylenol, a cup of water and a thermometer.

"Dammit, Mike. Why do you always get the flu around this time?" She whined/asked. He glared at her.

"Not my fault." He sat in the middle of the couch and took the Tylenol from her, along with the cup. "And how do you know it's the flu?" He retorted. She put the thermometer in his mouth to shut him up and felt his forehead. It was warm, but not too bad.

"Okay, lemme play doctor for a minute." Max said, sitting beside him. El got in the other spot next to him and put her head on his shoulder. "Sore throat, you just feel like shit, and a runny nose and sneezing?" Mike nodded. "No like, urge to puke or anything?"

"Not yet."

"You say that like you know."

"I do know, I say it every time, and every time I end up puking." El cringed a little at that but he didn't notice.

"Alright," Max sighed. "If I get sick because of you, I'm gonna kill you. I'll go call Lucas and tell him to get medicine on while he's at the store." Mike nodded and Max went back upstairs. "El, check the thermometer in about a minute." She called.

"You really do get the flu every year if she knows all the symptoms you get." El said, chuckling lightly. He shrugged. She took the thermometer out and squinted at it. "How the fuck do you read this thing." He snorted and took it from her. He looked at it couple seconds and said,

"98.4. Not necessarily a fever but getting there." He put it on the table and rubbed at his eyes again. "Why couldn't it have waited until like, we fucking got back home. I don't wanna sit in a car for three hours while I'm dying." She rolled her eyes at that.

"We can just wait until you're feeling better." She said. "Don't worry about it. I'm gonna go get you something to eat and a Gatorade if we have any." She patted his knee and stood up. He gave her a smile. She went in the kitchen while he unpacked everything he needed. He turned so he was leaning against the arm and stretched his legs out, sighing and stretching completely, letting out a strangled grunt/scream. "What the hell was that?" El called.

"Mike's mating call!" Dustin yelled back, coming up the stairs from the basement. Mike flipped him off. El laughed and poked her head in the living room.

"Give this to him, please." El told him, tossing Dustin a Gatorade. He handed it to Mike, doing a weird stance so he wouldn't get close to him.

"Really?" Mike deadpanned, snatching the bottle from him. Dustin snickered and nodded.

"Yeah, really. I can't afford to get sick right now dude." Mike rolled his eyes and flipped him off again. "When and where?" Mike threw a pillow at him and knocked his hat off. Dustin giggled and went off upstairs. Mike huffed and grabbed his laptop and opened it. Max and Will joined him in the living room, sitting on the opposite side, as El came back from the kitchen with a bowl, fork and napkin.

"Fuck me!" Mike whined, throwing his head back.

"Not while you're sick, Mike." El retorted, putting the bowl on the table beside him. He blushed bright red as Max and Will cackled from their spot.

"Not what I meant." He muttered. "It didn't save my conclusion so I have to write it again."

"Here," El handed him the bowl and she took the laptop, sitting in the space between his legs and the back of the couch. "Eat and I'll edit. Then you can write your conclusion, m'kay?" She said, not waiting for an answer.

"Don't baby him too much, he'll get used to it." Max said cheekily. Mike flipped her off.

"'Cause he's a wittle baby!" El leaned over and poked his cheek and he rolled his eyes, trying not to smile. She grinned and started reading his essay. "You know, I don't know why you think you need to edit this, like, thoroughly, because the only mistakes are two words together without a space or two letters in the wrong places." She told him. He gave her a small smile and shrugged. He finished the food a few minutes after she was done and set it on the coffee table, doing grabby hands at the computer. She chuckled and handed it to him.

"This conclusion is gonna be fucking four sentences, give or take a few. I don't even care." He muttered, typing away. They laughed. It ended up being eight sentences long, but they didn't have to know that. By the time he was done, Lucas had finally arrived with whatever he'd gone to the store for, and Mike some medicine. He tossed the bag to Mike and it landed in his crotch. "Ow, you fuck!" He threw a pillow his way but missed terribly, causing Lucas to giggle.

"I got you some of that Theraflu shit, cough medicine, some shit for nausea Max told me to get and nasal spray, which I know you hate."

"You hate me, don't you Lucas?" Mike accused.

"Just because I like watching you suffer doesn't mean I hate you." Lucas said, shrugging like it was obvious.

"Fuck you."

"Mike's a dick when he's sick, usually." Will told El.

"Just to you guys, because you love to fucking irritate me." He grumbled, picking at the plastic on one of the bottles. He gave up and just tore it off with his teeth. "Stupid plastic."

"You guys are insane." El chuckled, wiggling a little from her spot over Mike's legs. "I'm not bothering you sitting here, am I?" She asked. He shook his head, throwing back the small cup of medicine. He made a face and drank some Gatorade.

"Nah. You don't weigh anything so you're fine." She snorted and nodded.

"Why are you guys so abusive to poor Mikey?" El asked childishly.

"Yeah!" Mike pouted, crossing his arms and glaring at them. Max snickered.

"He always gets us sick too."

"Not always. You didn't get sick last year." Mike stuck his tongue out at him.

"No but that weird freshman roommate of yours did." Will pointed out.

"Don't talk about her." Mike cringed. "God, something was seriously wrong in her head."

"I personally think she smoked crack or something." Lucas said.

"I don't know but ugh." He cringed again. El raised her eyebrows at him. "You don't wanna know." He told her. She chuckled and nodded. She stood up.

"Do you want to take a shower or anything?" El asked. He shook his head. "Okay, I'm gonna go take one so I don't have to in the morning." He nodded and she kissed the top of his head before giving the others a peace sign and heading up the stairs. Mike watched her go with a dopey ass grin on his face.

"Jeez, Wheeler, you're really in love, huh?" Max asked, grinning at him. He rolled his eyes and flipped her off... fondly.

"Yeah." He mumbled, biting his lip. He turned so he was sitting up right, his feet on the floor, and put his laptop back in his back and put it on the couch, throwing the medicine back in the grocery bag, along with the bottle of Gatorade, and stood up, picking up his bowl.

"I can take it, Mike." Will told him, going to stand up but Mike waved him off.

"I'm not so sick that I can't do anything, but thanks." He gave him a smile and went into the kitchen to clean his bowl out. He blew his nose before going back in the living room and grabbing his stuff. "I'ma go to bed, I'll see you guys tomorrow." He said, making his way up the stairs. He heard the three respond with night or in Max's case, nighty nighty, Mikey!

He didn't even bother turning on the light, he just half assed shut the door behind him. El was still in the shower, obviously as she hadn't been up here ten minutes, so he opened the other boxes and took the medicine and then used the nasal spray, cussing Lucas out in his head the entire time. He dropped the few bottles on his desk and threw the bag in the small trashcan next to his bed that hadn't been there before.

Hm, I guess Max put it here for if I puke my guts up.

He pulled back the covers and plopped down and stretched out, and decided to text Richie, knowing the little shit was awake.

(Mike and Richie)

(9:21) Mikey boy- Richard are you awake

(9:21) Dick- Michael it's not even 9:30

(9:21) Dick- yes im awake

(9:22) Mikey boy- dick

(9:23) Dick- that's my name don't wear it out

(9:23) Mikey boy- *middle finger* what are you doing

(9:23) Dick- just dropped my dear Edwin off at home and am now sitting in my car

(9:24) Dick- what are you doing, probable brother o' mine

(9:24) Mikey boy- dying

(9:24) Dick- flu?

(9:25) Mikey boy- the start of it

(9:25) Dick- ew. wanna facetime or smthn when i get home? i don't have hw cus i already did it

(9:26) Mikey boy- lmao yeah. lmk and be careful

(9:26) Dick- when am i not careful?

(9:26) Dick- nvm i just dropped my fucking phone in a cup of water

(9:27) Dick- glad i have the waterproof case you got me for my bday on!

(9:27) Mikey boy- oml richie. go home XD

(9:28) Dick- lmao will do

(9:55) Dick- I am HOME and will facetime you in five minutes

(9:55) Mikey boy- lmao okay

Mike set his phone down and reached over, turning his lamp on, just as El came out of the bathroom. He looked over at her and saw that her hair was down, but it was straight.

"What?" She asked, setting her earrings on her dresser.

"Your hair." He said, lying back.

"Oh, yeah, I straightened it. That's why I was in there so long."

"I thought you were washing it or something." He shrugged.

"Nah, I washed it yesterday. It gets too dry if I wash it everyday." She tossed her phone on her bed and crawled next to him, leaning against the headboard too. "The meds help any yet?" She asked.

"Eh, I still feel like shit but my head's not hurting anymore."

"Good." She crossed her ankles and gave him a grin. He grinned back at her but jumped a little when his phone started going off. She raised an eyebrow as he picked it up.

"It's Richie." He explained. "He wanted to facetime so... you get to meet him." She grinned again as he answered, holding it up so Richie would be able to see both of them.

"MICHAEL!" Richie yelled, face close to the screen. All you could see was teeth, his grin so wide.

"Jesus, Dick, I'd rather not see your teeth the whole time." Mike said, snorting. El giggled. Richie held his phone a little further away and El's jaw dropped. Richie wiggled his eyebrows, looking at her.

"Like what you see?" He asked.

"You two are identical. What the hell?" She looked back and forth at them, and shook her head. "Jesus."

"I'm sure Mikey boy here told you, but we're pretty sure father o' mine is also Mikey's, so yeah. I look just like my dad."

"It's so weird." She muttered. She ran a hand through Mike's hair. "It looks so similar, too."

"If you think my hair's curly, wait til you see his in person. Lord." Mike shook his head, leaning into the touch a little.

"So I'm assuming this is the girlfriend?" Richie asked, raising an eyebrow. Mike rolled his eyes and nodded.

"I'm El." El said, smiling at him.

"Richie 'Trashmouth' Tozier, m'lady!" He said dramatically. She giggled. "So, Mikey, what happened to that little crush you had?" He asked. Mike blushed a little at that and El laughed. "What?"

"I'm the girl!" El sing-songed.

"Ooh, how did that happen?"

"You remember Will?" Mike asked.

"Little Willy? Yes! I love the lil fucker."

"You love Eddie more." Mike pointed out.

"Not the point." Richie blushed instantly.

"Will is my brother." El said. "Well, technically he's not, but we'll be step-siblings when my dad and mom get married."

"Mama J?" Richie asked. She nodded.

"Duh." Mike muttered. Richie flipped him off.

"So that's how you met or...?"

"Uh, kinda. I'd seen him at the place I work at sometimes and I always thought he was cute but we never talked. I was looking for a place to stay and Will told me that the house he lived in had space so Max like, interviewed me and I moved in the same day. I met Mike a couple days later."

"I swear, I almost died when I found out she was the girl from Benny's." Mike said, his cheeks red. "I told Dustin since he was at the house but he told Lucas, who told Max and Will about it."

"That dick."

"I know!" Mike exclaimed, making them laugh. "Then some drama with Dustin and a plan to make El jealous, which I guess I'll tell you when I see you, 'cause it's a lot." Richie snorted. "She kissed me on Thanksgiving and we talked and now we're together." El nodded in agreement.

"He wet his pants." El said, grinning cheekily. Richie busted out laughing and Mike's eyes widened.

"No I did not!"

Saturday, December 2, 2017

When El woke up the next morning, at nine thirty, Mike was sitting up in his bed, hunched over and looking miserable. She rubbed her eyes and sat up, throwing the blankets off her.

"Hey, you alright?" She asked. He looked over at her for a second, seemingly about to respond, when he promptly leaned over the other side of the bed and puked into the trash can. "Guess not." She scrambled over to his bed and actually held his hair back some, rubbing his back.

"Fuck." He croaked, spitting what was left in his mouth. He sat up and wiped his mouth with a tissue.

Where'd that even come from?

"Feel better?" He shook his head and leaned back.

"You're gonna... get sick," He said, voice still croaky, "being so close to me."

"I don't care." She shrugged. He gave her a look. "I don't! I'll be fine, Mike." She waved a hand. She sat back on her heels.

"I'm gonna get ready for work, think you'll be alright?" He nodded.

"Yeah, if I need anything I'll just... text Max or something." He grunted as he scooted back down into a lying down position. "Because I sure as hell ain't getting out of this bed unless I gotta pee." She chuckled and nodded, pulling his cover back over him and ruffling his hair.

He was asleep when she came back out, so she kissed his head and emptied the can, before putting it next to his bed. She put a cup of water on his nightstand and grabbed her things as quietly as she could and went downstairs.

"Ah, just the girl I was looking for." Max grinned at her. "Was the trash can needed?" She asked. El nodded.

"Yeah, I woke up and he was sitting up, looking miserable and he puked."

"The poor turd. I'll keep checking on him today since I don't have anywhere to be. He's in good hands." El smiled.

"I know. I don't have the best experience with taking care of sick people."

"The only reason I do is because these fuckers get sick a lot, whether it be the flu or just a cold." El chuckled. "Considering he's a big baby, he'll want to cuddle and shit when you get home so be prepared for that." El grinned and nodded.

"Thanks for the heads up. I don't mind cuddling." Max snorted at that.

"I don't know how you people do it, man, it gets so hot." El shrugged.

"I'm usually cold as shit so." She grinned, and looked at her phone. "Okay, I better get going. If he gets like, really bad, call me. I'm gonna keep my phone on me."

"I doubt it'll get much worse than this, but I will."

"I don't know, this flu season is ruthless according to the news, and my dad." She added. "Uh, he said like three people in Hawkins have died from it already."

"Holy shit, well, I'm gonna go get some stuff and chill out on your bed if that's okay, make sure he doesn't croak." El flinched a little at that but gave a forced smile, nodding.

"Yeah, that's fine. I'll see you later."

"Have a good day!" Max yelled as she shut the door.

El had been checking on Mike a good bit, with Max, but it wasn't until about four thirty when Mike sent a text to the group chat.

The Par-tayy

(4:31) Magic Mike- (video of idk wtf just happened)

(4:31) Magic Mike- my stomach when I eat something

(4:32) Willy Will- lmao more like your sanity when you're sick

(4:33) Magic Mike- Fuck you Will

(4:34) Eleven- whoa now, calm down children. It's not nice to cuss

(4:34) Magic Mike- ;p

(4:35) Stalker- mike what even the fuck

(4:36) Magic Mike- fuck off man im sick don't judge

(4:38) Dusty- we judge you when you're not sick why would we stop now

(4:45) Dusty- did he die

(4:46) Zoomer- no he just fell asleep

(4:46) Zoomer- (pic of Mike cuddled up next to Max)

(4:47) Eleven- omg i wish i wasn't at work

(4:48) Eleven- you think benny would be mad if i told him mike was sick and i needed to go to him

(4:49) Dusty- no benny's cool and all for true love

(4:50) Eleven- *middle finger*


(5:25) Zoomer- even when you get here?

(5:25) Eleven- yes

(5:26) Zoomer- lmao okay

El arrived back at home about fifteen minutes later, and Max was walking down the stairs as El started to go up.

"Oh, hey." El gave her a grin. "He still asleep?" Max nodded.

"Yeah, I'm gonna see if I can find anything for him to eat, that he won't throw up." El nodded.

"Toast." She told her. "At least, that would help me when I was sick."

"Gotcha, I'll make it and bring it up." El nodded again and continued up the stairs. She heard a laugh coming from their room and she made a face, and rolled her eyes with a smile at the sight before her, leaning on the door frame. Dustin and Lucas were on either side of Mike now, hugging him. He was squirming, trying to get away but was too weak to actually get anywhere.

"What happened to you two not wanting to get sick?" She asked, and all three jumped and Lucas let out a squeak, and Mike groaned.

"I hate you." He croaked, squirming again. "Get away." He whined.

"Okay first, get off him." She told them. "And second, didn't I tell you not to wake him up?" They scrambled off the bed and Mike stopped squirming, instead rolling onto the middle of the bed and stretching, letting out a tiny grunt, his cheeks red as fire.

"Sorry. And he woke up when Max got up so we wanted to take her place." Dustin said innocently. Lucas nodded in agreement, but looked at Mike.

"You might wanna go take a shower, dude, you fucking reek."

"You tink." Mike muttered, sitting up and running a hand through his hair, causing it to stick up wildly. Dustin snickered and Mike flipped him off.

"Tink?" Lucas asked. "Like Tinkerbell?" Mike threw a pillow at him.

"If I have to get up 'cause of you, I'ma beat your ass." He grumbled, getting up.

"Why are you getting up?" Lucas smirked.

"I've gotta fucking pee." He didn't necessarily slam the bathroom door, but it was enough to make the three jump.

"Mr. Grumpy Pants. Come on, let's go pack." Dustin pouted. El rolled her eyes and flicked them both on the back of the head. She shut the door behind them and went to fix Mike's sheets, since they were nearly sliding off the bed, but when she pulled back the blanket, there was a giant wet spot in the form of a body. She cringed a little and just pulled them off completely. He came back out and froze.

"What're you doing?" He asked.

"Your sheets are soaking wet with sweat." She explained. "And I'm sure your clothes are too. I think you should take a cool shower and change."

"But..." He gestured to the bed, pouting a little. She chuckled.

"You can get in my bed, Mike." She told him. "I know you don't feel like showering, but I'm sure it'd make you feel better. Then I'll lay with you, okay?" He sighed quietly and nodded. He walked past her to his dresser and got clean clothes. She dropped the sheets in a pile on the floor and held her arms out to him, and he hugged her, leaning down and burying his face in her hair.

"I'm sorry I'm being such a baby about this. I feel like shit and I'm usually sick when I'm at home and with my mom and... now I have to get used to her not fussing over me."

"I know." She said quietly, rubbing his back. "I'm sorry for the way she's acting. She doesn't deserve you as her son." He sniffed a little and nodded.

Please don't start crying, please don't start crying. If you cry I'll cry and I've cried in front of you enough- holy shit thank God.

Mike pulled away from her, resting his forehead on hers for a second before stepping away.

"I'ma get you sick." He muttered.

"Michael." She scolded. "If you do, I don't care. I'm not gonna leave you alone while you're sick. You're stuck with me for the next month." He smiled.

"Hopefully a lot longer than that." He pointed out. She blushed and grinned cheekily, winking at him.

"Go get in the shower, mister. I'll have the bed all cozy for you, with some food you hopefully won't throw up." He grimaced at the mention of food, but nodded, making his way back into the bathroom. As soon as the door shut, she sighed and picked up the sheets and blanket, deciding to worry about his hundred pillows later, and took them downstairs. She put them in the hamper for the time being and went in the kitchen with Max, who wasn't making the toast yet. She looked up from her phone when she heard El huff and sit at the island.

"You okay?" She asked, tucking it in her pocket and leaning on her arms in front of her.

"No." El scoffed. "I wanna fucking punch his mom in the face."

"Same." Max sighed. "I still don't know what she said to him exactly but it wasn't just that she didn't want him home for Thanksgiving or Christmas. She said something to upset him as much as it did."

"Hopefully he'll tell you, because then we can go beat her ass." She grumbled. Max chuckled.

"If he tells either of us what it was, we'll let each other know and go to her as immediately." She held out a hand to El, who giggled and shook her hand. "She hasn't always been like that, you know." She said. El looked at her, an eyebrow raised. "She used to be like a mom to me. She wasn't fucking around with other men five years ago, she actually tried to be a mom to them. She drinks too, you see, but she drinks wine. She doesn't drink the cheap liquor shit Ted does, but either way it didn't help the situation. She slowly started drinking more and more as Ted stopped paying her any attention, and she started sneaking off when we were sixteen. Mike knew about it, but didn't tell us about it for a while. He didn't really care, he'd seen it coming."


"Yeah, that's not all though. They were all younger guys, too, the youngest being eighteen, 'cause ya know, laws and shit." El nodded. "As of right now, she's fucking around with my step-brother, Billy. The one I wish would go die in a hole, remember me talking about him?"

"Boy do I. I wanna stick my foot so far up his ass it'll get stuck." Max snorted and nodded in agreement.

"I think he's fucking with her head, royally. I think that's why she's acting the way she is. How much you wanna bet her and Ted will immediately agree to give custody to Nance?"

"I know they will." She scoffed. "God, why do most of us have such shitty parents or family members? You, with your step dad and Billy, Will with his dad, Mike and his parents. My parents were abusive when I lived with them, before Hopper."

"It's a fucked up world." Max shrugged. "But I know one thing." She put a hand over El's and she looked up. "We learned from our parents' mistakes, and we will treat our children a hundred times better than they treated us."