AN: A mostly dialogue driven chapter this time. And yes, people do squirrel-fish. Search it on YouTube. No animals were harmed in the making of this fic, and I've never been squirrel fishing myself. Sorry for all the delays!
In Remy's opinion, it was all mental—John couldn't forget about the little plastic liner now residing in his stomach and that was what triggered the activity that the Aussie referred to as "chundering." Somehow, he mused as he flushed the unidentifiable contents of John's second bucket, the word was oddly appropriate. Fortunately, Pyro couldn't throw up forever. He could, however, be very irritable for a very long time—and an irritable John was a friend to no one, most especially flammable articles. As it was, he was already making peeved comments from his perch atop one of the kitchen counters, hunkered up beneath a cabinet, near the sink in case of emergency. He glowered as Remy paced back into the kitchen, firing him a razor edged look.
"'Ey now, if looks coul' kill, I'd be stone dead. Cheer up, ain't dat bad."
"Ya bloody idiot."
"Will ya stop mopin'? I din' do anyt'in to ya., ya did it to yaself."
"Wha's a bloody idiot like you need with white strips anyways?"
Remy laughed, waving an empty pack of cigarettes under John's nose and flashing a brilliantly white smile. "T'ink de ladies appreciate de nicotine stains?"
John's stomach saved him the trouble of response, causing him to double over in a dry heave. Gambit assessed John as his body folded over the bucket: bloodshot eyes, chapped lips, most likely dehydrated. He sighed—this most likely meant that he'd be taking yet another trip to the grocery store this week, this time for popsicles and anything else a queasy kid could keep down. There was just one small problem—Petey was still sound asleep and there was no way that he was going to leave John unsupervised for any amount of time.
"Do they appreciate ya at all, bayou boy?" John finally wheezed, wiping one hand across his mouth.
"Oh, I t'ink so. An' y'can take the boy outta de bayou, but you can't take de bayou outta de boy."
"If you take the 'boy' outta the 'bayou', then all you've got left is 'au'."
"Boy. B-O-Y. Bayou. B-A-Y-O-U. Bayou, minus boy, is A-U," John mumbled weakly. "I thought ya were supposed to be smart."
Remy stared at John for a minute, completely dumbfounded. Could it be? Could it be that there really was a glimmer of scholarly intelligence in the boy?
…….Nah. It was just too early, and he hadn't had enough sleep yet.
John, his face drawn and pale, looked up at Remy miserably. "I'm here. An' you're here. But where's the big guy?" He paused, choking back a gag reflex, "He doesn't hate me for, ya know, wakin' everybody up, does he?"
"Nah, he hates ya for ot'er stuff. I hate y'for wakin' me up. Promise I won't kill ya yet, t'ough. Dis Cajun still t'inks yah're pretty handy for startin' bonfires an' such."
"Awww, ya love me Remy!" John croaked.
"Love ya just 'bout as much as I love empytin' dose buckets y'keep fillin'," Gambit retorted.
"……………..So ya love me, right, mate?"
"Remy's gonna slug y'if y'keep it up."
"Nah, ya wouldn't do that."
"Remy really is gonna slug ya."
"That's hardly fair."
"Life ain't fair."
"But why not?"
"'Cause not everybody can have wha' dey wan'."
"Y'feelin' philosophical dis mornin' o' somet'in'?"
"I'm like a squirrel. I like squirrels."
Remy stared at John a minute. Oddly enough, there was more than just a little truth in that statement: He really was like a squirrel—without any cute, fluffy, possibly redeeming qualities. "Yeah, dat sounds 'bout right. Y'like to rummage t'rough everyt'ing, steal stuff, get distracted by shiny stuff…D'ya work for peanuts too?"
"Remy…. That was the worst joke ever, mate."
"Come on, it wasn't dat bad!"
"Was too. It was like that joke where somebody walks into a bar and says 'Ow'."
"I ain't dat lame!"
"And wha' kinda judge o' humor are ya, squirrel-boy?"
"Squirrels are funny. Ever been squirrel-fishin'?"
"D'ya know dat dere's a loony bin not far from here? Betcha dey'd take ya."
"I ain't crazy!"
"Sez' you, de squirrel-fisher."
"Stupid Cajun, just 'cause you've never experienced th'art of squirrel-fishin'."
"Why would ya wanna fish f'squirrels anyways?"
"It's fun! Well, unless ya get a rabid squirrel. If that happens, well, then you're just buggered, mate."
"Dis homme will take y'word fo' it."
"You should try it, it's fun!"
"What, catchin' rabid squirrels?"
"Nah, that's just stupid. The crazy ones are more fun."
"Suuuuure, crazy ones are de fun ones, he says," Remy muttered. "De crazy ones is just crazy. S'no wonder he likes squirrels."
"Whadja say?" St. John responded.
"Ya sound like ya're feelin' better."
"A bit," John murmured, "but I might feel better if y'let me fish for squirrels."
"How d'ya even do dat?"
"It's simple mate. Get a string, tie a peanut to it, and throw it. Yank on it when the little buggers grab hold an' they run like crazy…… Have we got any peanuts?"
"Y'ate dem all yesterday."
"Oh. That's sad."
The dejected look on the pyromaniac's face had Remy hooked—the poor guy had been throwing up all morning, after all. He sighed, running his hands through his hair before finally answering John : "But I'm goin' t'de store an' dis Cajun will pick up some if y'promise not t'set anyt'ing on fire while I'm gone. An' be nice to Petey."
John clapped his hands together excitedly, giggling maniacally already. Remy didn't even know what he was going to be like later…..The last thing that he heard from John as he left the room was one last exclamation: "Get the salty kind! It's my—their—favorite!"