AN: Well, I'm surprised that the response to this thing was so positive. This story was like, half fever dream, and half sleep deprivation. But alright, here's chapter two. It was going to be longer, but it had gotten fairly lengthy before I'd even managed to get halfway into what I'd planned to write. So I guess that means there'll be a chapter three relatively soon.
Lincoln Loud was screaming. That was the first thing the boy's terror addled-mind managed to convey to him, as he struggled to reorient himself, trying to remember what was going on. He quickly patted himself down. Pajamas...right, he'd been trying to sleep. Sweat soaked pajamas, specifically. Long sleeves and pants, the better to combat cold winter nights in a poorly insulated room. That narrowed things down considerably. He must have had another nightmare.
The rationale did little to comfort the young boy as recollections of his fantastical sojourn began trickling back to him. Darkness. Claws. Eyes. So many eyes...
Lincoln shuddered violently, shaking his head forcefully in a desperate attempt to abort this train of thought. But the damage was already done. Here in the real world Lincoln sat alone in a dark room, and though he tried his hardest to convince himself otherwise, everywhere he looked he saw hidden terrors. Terrible things, waiting for the boy to let down his guard so they could do unspeakable things to him. No, sleep would not be forthcoming, not now. Not like this. A situation like this called for the big guns.
Screwing up his courage, Lincoln set aside his blankets, and slid to the floor as quietly as possible, then began to tiptoe to the door. Silently...carefully...just don't make a sou—
Well, that was short lived. Heart in his throat and adrenaline pumping through his veins, Lincoln charged the doorway, taking the biggest strides his tiny legs could manage. Then, the second he crossed the threshold, he pivoted around and slammed the door shut behind him. He was safe, for the moment at least.
Taking big, gulping breaths, Lincoln weighed his options. Leni was usually the safest bet in these sorts of situations, the second eldest Loud sibling was always willing to share her bed with Lincoln, no questions asked. Heck, sometimes she'd ask him to sleep with her, for no particular reason Lincoln could see. Unfortunately, she was spending the night at a friend's house. Lori was a less certain option, at the very least she was going to be angry about being woken up in the middle of the night. Nevertheless, Lori loved her siblings, and Lincoln had little doubt that in his current state, she'd be perfectly willing to let him bunk with her. Luna and Luan too. The real problem, as he saw it, was that venturing towards any of their rooms meant traversing the pitch black hallway before him—
Again, Lincoln shuddered. Stupid house. Yeah, that wasn't happening, which left him with only one option. And...if he was being perfectly honest with himself, it was always going to be his only option. He'd promised his mom and dad that he was going to stop doing this, that he could be a big boy, but...maybe just one more time. Just this one, last time. Honest.
Lincoln set forth, braving the darkness once more Thankfully, he didn't have far to go this time. In fact, his destination was already in sight, and it wasn't long before he'd found the door he was looking for. Twist the knob, sidestep through the crack and shut the door behind him, a routine his body knew by rote at this point. And only at that point, with this particular door safely between him and the darkness outside, was Lincoln finally able to find a measure of peace.
The Loud boy crept forward, artfully stepping around the array of debris that littered the room, his target now at hand. He didn't even need to check to make sure she was there, her snoring made her presence readily evident, and that in itself was of strange comfort to him.
"Lynn." Lincoln hissed, gripping the girl by the shoulder and giving her a good, solid shake...after which he immediately stepped back—
—to avoid the fist that now occupied the space he was standing only moments before.
"Whazzat!?" Lynn mumbled as she sat up, fists held in front of her in a boxers stance, her head jerking around frantically as her cognitive functions slowly came online. Lincoln continued to hang back, knowing that Lynn would need a bit more time. Eventually she began to slow, her gaze sharpening as she seemed to finally be processing her surroundings.
"Lincoln?" She asked, allowing her hands to drop at last. "What's going on?"
Lincoln sidled forward, still ready to dodge out of the way if need be, but relatively certain in his continued well being. "W-well..." He began, "I had another bad dream—"
He didnt get to finish. There was a brief feeling of vertigo as the world around him went all blurry and spinney. When everything came back into focus, Lincoln found himself snug under the covers, his big sister's arms wrapped tightly around him.
"...Just like that?" He asked, as he always did.
"Just like that." Said Lynn, giving him an affectionate peck on the cheek. "Good night little bro."
Immediately the room was filled with the sound of Lynn's loud, strangely aggressive snoring as she immediately passed out once more. In spite of that, it was only now that Lincoln was finally able to relax, the stress of the night being washed away by the comforting presence of his big sister.
The monsters couldn't get him now. They never could. Not while Lynn Loud was keeping him safe.
Lincoln awoke with a start, wincing as a powerful feeling of deja-vu overtook him. He glanced around his room. Board games, comic books, video game boxes stacked perilously high. That...didn't clarify much. Then he reached for his face. Bingo, two-days of facial hair. Yep, he was definitely an adult.
Dreaming about his childhood was a strange and unsettling experience. By and large, Lincoln did his best to avoid thinking about those days. It was easier that way, too much baggage. Much better to focus on the here and now. The life he'd carved out for himself here in this...room?
Lincoln frowned as he wracked his brain, trying to remember the events of last night. Much as he'd wanted to, he hadn't gone to sleep in this bed. Lynn would have thrown a fit (and probably a few other things) if he'd tried to make her sleep on the couch, so he'd decided to preemptively deal with that problem by just surrendering his sleeping space to her. Then he'd made up a spot on the couch, and then he'd...been brought back here...by Lynn. His eyes began to cross as memories of the previous night began to trickle back, intermingling with remnants of his dream. Lynn's comforting presence, her strong arms holding him close. His face comfortably buried in his sister big che—err, his big sister's...chest.
He shook his head, violently. That wasn't how it went. That couldn't have been how it went. He and Lynn hadn't been those kids in a very long time. Therefore, his nighttime sojourn simply wasn't worth dwelling upon. Period.
Thus decided, Lincoln hopped out of bed and traded his sleepwear for real clothes. Yes, he may only be a few steps removed from being an actual-shut in, but he refused to look the part. Which...probably meant he should shave too.
Dressed, shaven, and reasonably hygienic, Lincoln ventured forth from his sleeping space to his living space—
And immediately skidded to a halt, eyes wide with surprise. Lynn was bustling around the kitchen area, having clearly made herself at home in more ways than one. The superheroine had traded her costume for a sensible set of sweat clothes. At least, that's what Lincoln suspected they'd started out as. A girl of Lynn's dimensions required clothing that was specially tailored and often made from special fabrics, which was likely why she'd been forced to cut off the legs of the pants, and the sleeves and most of the midsection of the sweater. The end result was something more akin to a tank-top and shorts combo, and ended up being no more modest than her usual outfit. It further occurred to Lincoln that since his sister had arrived last night with nothing but the clothes on her back, those had more likely than not been his sweats...
"Something on your mind, Linc?" Lynn called back as she leaned down and began to rummage through his cupboards, putting her shapely, prodigious rear on full display. It gentle bobbed in place. Daring him. Beckoning him...
The white haired man jerked back to life, and managed to pull his gaze away just in time. When he looked back, now all he could see was Lynn, staring at him, an uncharacteristic look of concern in her eyes. Aaaand leaning forward on his counter, putting a truly eye-popping amount of cleavage on display...
"I'm fine!" He snapped, as he made his way over. The words came out more harsh than he'd intended, but being here with Lynn was dredging up memories from the previous night, and the very uncomfortable feelings that came with them.
"Are those my clothes?" He asked as he reached the kitchen area, and almost immediately regretted it as his body began to recall the very pleasant sensation of cuddling with an extremely naked Lynn only a few hours prior.
"Yep!" She announced, giving what little fabric remained of her top a small tug. It caused some very...interesting movement in that region. "Sorry about the wear and tear, but this is the only thing you had that'd fit me." That was debatable. "But don't worry, I ordered myself some stuff. Paid for it too." She seemed strangely proud of that last part.
"Please tell me you didn't use AmazonessDotCom." He said, wincing slightly. "They always make a mess."
"Those posers? Please!" Lynn scoffed, waiving dismissively before shifting into an impressive, double-bicep pose. "Those losers have been trying to recruit me for years. Never take no for an answer, even though I've explained that their stupid 'corporate culture' just can't handle this sheer amount of Lynnsanity I've got here!"
"Uh huh." Lincoln muttered noncommittally as he discretely tried to avert his gaze. Lynn was putting her makeshift outfit through its paces, and he honestly wasn't sure how he'd feel in the case of a wardrobe malfunction...
"I went with Invisible Inc." She continued, mercifully abandoning her grandstanding and returning to her work. "They deliver by ninja, so we won't even know they were here until the delivery's complete."
"That's not at all unsettling." Lincoln replied, blandly, as he turned back to Lynn. It was only at this point that he finally got a good look at what she was doing. "Speaking of messes...What the heck are you doing?"
"Makin' breakfast, obviously." Lynn said, gesturing to the kitchen around her. That was certainly one interpretation. It was probably more accurate to say that Lynn was making meat.
Lincoln's apartment was a modest affair, designed for efficiency of space rather than comfort, and his kitchen (really more of a kitchenette) shared that design aesthetic. Which only exacerbated the fact that nearly every inch of his countertop had either been co-opted for the cooking of, or storing of meat. Lynn ran an efficient, if messy machine. To the left hand side of his stovetop sat several plates piled high with raw, uncooked meat. Low quality ground beef for the most part, it was easier on the wallet, but it also seemed that she'd managed to find the higher quality cuts he'd been saving for a special occasion. Which was to be now, apparently. The stove itself was on full burn, four pans running simultaneously, each tasked with turning nasty, inedible carnage into safe, mostly edible carne. When a batch was done, Lynn would shuck it onto a waiting platter on the right hand side of the stovetop, fill the now empty frying pan once more, pivot around to give her hands a quick wash, and then resume the process all over again.
Seemingly content with her output for the moment, Lynn shut off the stove, then grabbed a plate piled high with still sizzling meat, and began turning towards him. Annoyed as he was that he'd have to make another trip to the grocery store, Lincoln couldn't deny that the offering certainly looked appetizing, and so he held out his hands expectantly
...Which made it all the more surprising when Lynn halted her motion mid-way, dumped as much of the meat as she could fit into his blender, and set the blades to flying with a flick of the switch
A few moments later she shut the appliance off, poured the result into a tall glass, and slammed it down in front of him.
"Protein Shake, a la Lynn" She said, proudly. "Bon Appetite!"
Lincoln eyed the concoction warily. It was thick. And brown. And it burbled.
"You're kidding." He deadpanned.
"I never kid about fitness, bro!" Lynn said with a confident laugh. "How do you think I got so big and strong?"
"A freak accident which, among other things, gave you a supercharged metabolism that converts nearly anything you eat into additional muscle mass." Came Lincoln's immediate reply. He had sudden recollection of an incident where Lana had dared Lynn to eat a rusty lead pipe. The athlete had immediately complied, then asked for seconds.
"I think you mean freaking awesome, accident." Lynn corrected him. "But yeah...that part definitely helps." She hesitated. "You sure you don't want it?"
Lincoln looked down at the beverage once more. Burbling had given way to full on foaming, and in a way that seemed oddly infuriated. "I'm sure." He said, dryly.
"Well, no point in wasting good chow." Lynn shrugged, reached for the glass, and slammed the drink back in a single gulp, sighing contentedly afterwords. "I could go for seconds." She remarked, and set about mixing up another.
"Fantastic." Lincoln looked around his totaled kitchen. "Well, I guess since my kitchen is occupied, I'm gonna have to go pick up something." He made to turn away, but stopped, looking back at his sister. "There's a coffee shop only a few doors down. You going to be okay if I step out for a few minutes?"
"Me?" Lynn laughed as she poured herself another glass of meat. "I should be the one worrying about you. I can't believe you willingly pour that junk into your body."
"Says the girl who just pounded back a literal meat smoothie." As if proving his point, Lynn slammed back another glass of the sludge. "It's a shake." She insisted.
"Whatever." Again, Lincoln started moving towards the door, but something compelled him to delay his departure just a little longer.
"You...want anything?" He called back, only somewhat hesitant.
"Nah." Lynn waived him off, and gave her waist a slap. "I've still got access to my accounts, but I'm strapped for actual cash. Kinda hard to fit a wallet into a leotard, you know?"
"My...treat." Said Lincoln, trying not to think of his dwindling bank account. Even so, he could help but smile at the way Lynn's eyes lit up with happiness.
"Weeeeeeeell, if you insist..." She quickly replied, gleefully rubbing her hands together. "I'll take a Choco Coco Loco Moco."
"That the one that's a 108% chocolate?" Lincoln asked
"Yep." Lynn nodded eagerly. Then she looked down and frowned, lightly patting her washboard stomach. "Actually, better make it a small."