A/N: I've got a lot more to say at the bottom (seriously, a lot more because I'm really annoying with author's notes like that, you know). But, you should know, if you're fine with what happened in the last chapter and having everyone as how they were there…let me put it this way: some of you aren't going to like this epilogue because of what happens to some people. And, also, this is short, way shorter than the regular chapters, hence, why it is the epilogue, right? That being said, yes this epilogue is important, and you should read it…now.
Disclaimer: Don't own, don't claim to, wouldn't dream of it, got it memorized?
"What I want is to be needed. What I need is to be indispensable to somebody. Who I need is somebody that will eat up all my free time, my ego, my attention. Somebody addicted to me. A mutual addiction."
--Choke by Chuck Palahniuk
Tweek's heartbeat, I have come to know, is not any faster than a normal person's. That isn't to say that Tweek is completely normal or that his heartbeat isn't important. I think there is a lot to be said for someone's heartbeat. No one's sounds the same, if you consider that no one listens the same. I think that, out of everything that I've ever learned, the fact that love is based on listening as much as it is on talking, is the most important thing and that while that sounds pretty cliché it tends to hold true in almost every situation. I think that without knowing that you can't really love someone.
A lot of the time Tweek and I don't even talk. It isn't that we have nothing to say, but it is that we don't want to say anything. We don't have to talk or do anything at all when we're together. I don't have to smoke or lie or flip anyone off and he doesn't have to drink coffee. We just have to listen. Tweek listens to me breathing and I listen to his heartbeat and that's enough. I used to think that Tweek's heartbeat was like a hummingbird, shaky and flitting from place to place on the smallest whim, but now I know I'm wrong.
I don't mean to sound gay or anything – I do, but I don't mean to – but, I'm pretty sure that's life. Having someone who's heartbeat you have memorized. Tweek's heartbeat might as well be mine, I think about it so much. I think about it when I'm smoking with Christophe. I think about it when Kenny tries to tell me that, no, I can't be around Tweek all the time and never get sick of the blond. I think about it when I tell Kenny he's wrong. I think about it when Tweek is right next to me and when he's not. Tweek's heartbeat is my main addiction, above everything else. As long as I know his heart is beating, I'm alright.
He's shakier than ever. I don't think any of us have ever seen Tweek as he is these days. But it's not from his worries or his paranoia; he's Kenny on speed now. He's so happy that everything he does is energized. He's a hummingbird alright, and he's content to flit from place to place as long as I'm with him. Tweek is a little ball of blond energy that freaks out about every little thing, especially when we aren't holding hands. I'm still the only one who can calm him down, but there's less to calm him down about now that things are – well, not that we're us.
And, really, I think everyone can agree that things are better this way.
"Craig, truth or dare?" Cartman asks, through gritted teeth. Except maybe Cartman.
"We're not playing truth or dare, fatass," Kyle reminds him from the couch. "No one besides you wants to play it and, anyway, you just want to play it so you can embarrass someone or make out with Wendy in the closet." Everyone else mutters in agreement, even Wendy who doesn't look as mortified of the idea as she probably should. Although that, more than likely, has something to do with the sheer amount of alcohol she had to drink while playing Have You Ever. It was a bit funny to see both Kyle and Wendy drink when 'have you ever made out with Stan' came up.
We've been fighting about this for a while now. By 'we' I mean Cartman and Kyle. I don't think any of us would mind having to play the game very much, but no one wants to get in the middle of their fight, so all of us are just watching, amused. Cartman calls Kyle a Jew rat and Kyle calls Cartman fatass. I mean, pointing out the obvious just isn't going to cut it anymore. With anyone other than Kyle, at least, because the redhead still gets angry when he hears insults I'm sure he's heard a million times. The rest of us find them easy to ignore, but that's probably because they aren't directed towards us. I flip Cartman off, regardless, and he sees me.
"Ay! What was that for, fag boy?" he cries at me.
"Shut up, you fat fuck," I throw back at him. "You're just upset because you don't have anyone." Everyone who is currently single glares at me and everyone who is currently dating someone nods in agreement. Kyle looks torn between the two. "Jesus, hanging out with you people is like hanging out with first graders," I let them know as Bebe suggests Spin the Bottle. I don't know why, first off, I'm with this group, which consists of Kyle, Cartman, Wendy, Bebe, Christophe, Clyde, Token and Rebecca. And, second, I know why I'm not with Tweek, but I don't like it.
"Can't stand them?" Kenny asks as I approach the stairs. I hadn't noticed him at first. He's sitting with Butters, who's actually asleep on the floor next to him. Kenny has a red plastic cup in his hands that I'm sure is full of whatever cheap beer Stan bought. I didn't drink any. Alcohol has just never had much appeal to me, mostly because I act like a retarded pussy when drunk, and, besides, I have enough vices as it is. I shrug and Kenny downs the rest of whatever is in the cup then smiles up at me. "Now I can probably stand them."
I glance back at the group that's sitting at the other end of Stan's basement. Kyle is saying something about how he and Christophe aren't dating.
"Oui," Christophe says with a nod, "dating iz for faggots." And then Kyle lays back down, his head in Christophe's lap, while the French boy plays with his red hair.
"Maybe I need some more alcohol," Kenny says, looking at the empty cup. "Hey, Butters?" The blond boy, who I had thought was asleep, opens his eyes slightly and Kenny runs a hand through his blond hair. His hair isn't golden, like Tweek's is, I notice with a hint of satisfaction. "I'm going to go upstairs with Craig and get some more – something to drink. You alright to wait for me for a little bit?" There's concern in his voice that he doesn't have for anyone else. If Butters asked him to stay, Kenny would stay.
"N-no, it's alright, Kenny," Butters says with a small yawn. "I'll wait for ya."
"Don't say anything, Craig," Kenny warns me as we walk up the stairs.
"Wasn't going to," I reply with a smile, even though we both know that's a lie. A particularly good one, too, except for the fact that Kenny doesn't believe it. Most people don't believe my lies anymore, but I don't have any reason to tell them at this point. Everything is good enough. The truth gives me as much euphoria as lies used to. If I made New Year's resolutions mine would probably have been to stop lying. It's the least I can do, I think. Quit one addiction to accept another. "So you and Butters," I say, anyway, even though I know Kenny doesn't want to talk about that.
"Don't ask," Kenny says, leading the way into Stan's living room as he sighs. "You just saw what's going on. I think he's too naïve to realize anything at this point and I can't really say that bothers me. It's actually rather adorable that he thinks it's all innocent and I'm sure he'll figure it out someday, but for right now, I'm good with what we have, even if it's not exactly how I want thing to be." We're about to enter the kitchen when Kenny turns towards me abruptly and draws a hand across his neck.
Recently this has become sign language for: 'Stan is here, don't talk about anything having to do with redheaded Jews or chain smoking French boys or any sort of romantic feelings.' I tend to ignore this motion and pretend I don't see it, because I could honestly care less what anyone feels should or shouldn't be said around Stan. People think too much about what to say around others, I think. Especially Stan, who needs to hear things whether he wants to or not. He can't just pretend that Kyle and Christophe don't exist. I know he wants to, hell, I would want to if I was him. But I know enough now. Pretending doesn't work.
"Hey, Stan," I say, cheerfully, like he isn't standing in front of the freezer. He looks like he's going to stand there for the few million years I'm sure it would take for him to freeze to death. "Kyle isn't in there. If you're looking for him, he's downstairs." Kenny nearly punches me in the stomach but seeing as I'm rather graceful and he's rather drunk he totally misses. I'm on my way to the kitchen table where someone, probably a girl, has apparently brought food to the party. I don't know what the things on the plate are, they look like one of those recipes you can only find by watching the Food Network at one in the morning, but, fuck, they taste pretty good.
"Oh!" Kenny snaps his fingers. "I've got a good – okay, listen to this Stan." The blond reaches over and closes the freezer door. Stan looks at him and I eat another one of the delicious mystery things. God, they're almost better than sex. Emphasis on almost. "Craig, who's your best friend?"
"What are you, re – oh." Turns out that Kenny isn't retarded – he's trying to make a point. "Well, Tweek, of course."
"Right, right, and who's your boyfriend?"
"Tweek." Only it comes out more like 'Twemphg' because I'm stuffing my face a bit more with those – the really, really good tasting things. I'm going to have to tell Christophe about them, it turns out he's good at cooking. Despite what he says he's such a faggot at times. He and Kyle might not be dating or even doing anything at all romantically, but he's been in that sort of a mood permanently. Oh, yes, he's a cynical bastard, but he can make one hell of a cake. It's good cake too, not that stuff you buy in the box, it's real cake.
"See, no reason you two can't be best friends and date, Stan," Kenny says, making his point crystal clear.
"Oh my God you guys are we actually having this conversation again?" I whine, although I doubt it makes much sense when you consider I'm eating. Still. But I have good reason, I haven't eaten since this morning when my mom made breakfast, and by that I mean she put a box of cereal on the counter before she left to take my sister to dance class. My dad is in Orlando and I like to imagine he's in Disney World having an affair with the lady who dresses up as Cinderella. Fuck, that's romantic; I hope somehow Cinderella becomes my new mom.
"Again," Kenny agrees. "We've only had it about a million times. Everyone's sick of it, you know that, right, Stan?" There's an important thing to mention here and it is that Kenny will never, ever say Kyle's name in front of Stan. He hasn't since the party and probably won't ever do it until Stan either gets together with Kyle or gets the fuck over him. Because Kyle Broflovski, you see, really isn't dating anyone. He's chosen to take whatever road it is that means you don't choose between the two things you can't choose between.
And, you know, there are a few things I could say about that. Like stupid and cowardly and not like Kyle at all. But he's going to make the choice eventually. For right now he's best friends with Stan again and maybe it's not exactly same, maybe there's this weird feeling between them. I don't know, I'm not them. But they're fine, really, even if Stan looks a little hurt every time he sees the redhead with the French boy. And how to describe those two? Well, they're not so much friends as they are broken pieces of a mirror, looking into it and seeing what they used to be. What they aren't any more, but I don't think they know what to be now and the jury's out on that decision. They're in this weird position because they never really were friends, they've always been something more than that and something less and so they don't talk nearly as much as Stan and Kyle do, but with Kyle and Christophe…they're either going to drift apart forever or get back together again.
Stan and Kyle? They're forever, best friends or something more; I don't think they'll ever be separated.
"I know," is all Stan has to say as he opens the freezer again. Perhaps I was wrong. The raven-haired boy might be attempting to start a second ice age so that we'll all be frozen in time. I would tell him about global warming but I'm afraid he'd simply shatter into pieces with that revelation.
"Craig," Kenny says. And that's all I need to hear to know I'm not welcome. Normally I'd insist to stay and hear the entire he's-my-best-friend-but-I'm-so-in-love-with-him conversation that we've all heard in every romantic comedy movie ever, but the clock on the stove is telling me it's about time I get to Tweek's house anyway, his mom doesn't like it when I'm late to dinner. Then again, she doesn't like it when I spoil dinner either, but I'm taking a few extras of the Best Food Ever with me for the walk to the Tweak house and they definitely aren't healthy for me.
I stay at Tweek's house more often than not these days. His parents could honestly care less; his mom thought we started dating in, like, tenth grade anyway. Although his dad literally talked to me about sex and whatever the fuck else you can think of that's really uncomfortable to talk about with your boyfriend's dad. God I love those people. They're like a family from one of those 90's sitcoms that had no problem talking about anything with each other, sans laugh track. Maybe I'm the laugh track, because I'm constantly laughing when I'm with them.
When I eat dinner with them no one talks to their food. No one tries to slowly kill themselves with unearthly amounts of salt. And no one – it's actually a rule now that I'm there all the time – flips anyone else off at the dinner table. Ever, or else they're going back to their own house and forced to talk to Tweek on the phone which really isn't the same at all as being with him. It's done wonders for my attitude, quite honestly. Not that I don't get angry when things don't go my way, but it's different now, in a way I can't really explain.
Tweek's mom makes good food, almost as good as the food from the party; four extras of which I manage to eat in the short walk from Stan's house to Tweek's. One thing I like about Tweek's family – out of the million other things I like – is that they tend to eat dinner late. It makes sense when you consider the three of them are constantly drinking coffee and Tweek's dad gets home late from locking up Harbucks and whatnot, so even though I don't reach their house until it's nearly ten in the evening I'm practically right on time.
"Try one," I tell Tweek, pushing one of the amazing food items into his hands as he opens the door for me. I think they might be cookies.
"I'll ruin my dinner, Jesus Christ, Craig!" he shrieks, dropping it on the floor.
God, it's good to be home.
Dinner at Tweek's house is quite like dinner you see in every family-oriented television show. How was your day? I tried a new recipe. Craig, get your elbows off of the – Craig, do you want to go home? I am at home, retard. Craig, don't say retard. Sorry. The food is good. The food is actually kind of amazing. You don't think there's a chance we'll get food poisoning do you? No, Tweek, but if it makes you feel any better I'll eat first and if I die you don't have to eat any of it. Oh God, don't – ngh – joke about that! Craig, you should really eat something. Alright, I will be working the calories off later tonight anyway. Craig!
Which is basically all of them freaking out at me. Yeah, definitely a 90s sitcom. They always assume the worst of me, but never really get mad. Which is really the trait my own family is lacking. I do see my own family, honestly, but they never seem to be home. Tweek's family is much more stable – and when you're saying that you kind of know your own family is fucked up. Still, I can't blame them for being fucked up; it's in our genes as far as I know. God forbid I ever have sex with some chick while I'm drunk and get her pregnant, no, it's my sister's job to continue the line of really messed up individuals.
I sleep in Tweek's room, which isn't as creepy as it sounds, I promise. I'm not supposed to sleep in his room, really, but I do it anyway. A lot of the time we sleep in the living room anyway. It doesn't really matter where, you know, as long as we're together.
I have found that there is a side-affect to having Tweek around all the time: becoming a bit of a gaywad.
I think about things a little differently now. People always say things about how we're young and our lives are only just starting. First things first, I'd like to point out that if that's true, what have I been doing the last eighteen years? I'd kind of like to think my life started when I was born, thanks. Still if life did start right now, I wouldn't have as much to complain about. Really, though, I think life is different for everyone, in the way that not only will people all have different experiences, but also that no one will react to something the same way.
When you cut down a tree there are rings and people say you count those rings to tell how old the tree was – you know, before you basically killed it. The thing is, true, you're going to know about how many years that tree was around. But you're never going to know much else. You might be able to guess just by looking at, but you won't ever know anything. And it sounds stupid, because what does a tree go through? I guess what I mean is, you can look at a person and chances are if you guess their age you won't be off by more than a year or two. Hell, you could even know that person's exact age, down to the day, hour, minute and second, but you will never, ever know what that person has gone through.
You can know things that have happened to that person and what they've done to others, but you can't know everything. You can't look at someone and say 'this is when everything fell apart' or 'this is when a fondness turned into a full-blown addiction.' You can never simply look at someone and decide who they are. As far as I'm concerned there's more to everyone than meets the eye and no matter how long you live, no matter how many years you spend on Earth, there is no possible way to ever have the ability or the right to look at someone know what their life is like.
What you've been through, what you've seen, whoever's life you've touched, and whoever has touched yours – it's the one thing that's completely unique to all of us.
I'll never know exactly what happened with everyone else. There are too many missing moments. I'm not going to know why, exactly, Christophe broke things off with Kyle. I can't say for sure what Stan and Kyle ever did or whether they'll ever do anything else together again. I can't tell you what's going on between Kenny and Butters anymore than I can tell you what I learned in Human Bio last week. Maybe I once knew something, but that's gone. It's not my life, it's not my story and I don't know what's going to happen to any of them.
When you get right down to it you don't know anything about anyone, not even yourself. And there you go, you know – that's it. No big lesson of morality here. I'm pretty content with that, lying in bed with Tweek, listening to his heart beat while he listens to my breathing pattern – not knowing anything about what's really going to happen and still knowing everything in the world. It's just one of those things, like when they thought the world was flat. One day something can be an absolute truth and the next someone can destroy everything you thought was fact. We're just two people, ordinary and unoriginal in every way, what we have right now isn't any more special than what anyone else has.
We aren't one person, we aren't forever, our hearts don't beat in synch, we don't know what the other person is thinking, we fight all the time, we rarely agree on anything, we don't like the same movies, music or television shows, we have different ambitions in life, we have completely opposite views, we aren't always there for each other and we never will be. We leave each other, we find each other, we stay together and we fall apart. There's only one thing that stays constant, one thing that makes it all worth it, one thing that everyone can agree on. We belong together.
And that's no lie.
A/N: And it's over. Officially and unequivocally, the most fun I've had writing a multi-chaptered fic so far. Much, much, much thanks to everyone who reviewed, even all you anonymous people who I couldn't reply to. Also thank you to everyone who read and didn't review, I appreciate that as well.
Now, in regards to the end of this story, I don't know how happy all of you will be with how I chose to end things. But, in my defense, this is and always has been Craig and Tweek's story and so the end of this story is theirs, not anyone else's. I have, in my mind, an idea of what happens to everyone else. (i.e. who Kyle chooses, what happens with Kenny and Butters, etc.) but that's my idea, not yours, and because I haven't written explicitly what happened to them in this story I have no right to decide for you what happens to them, so that's all up to your imagination.
For all you people that (for whatever reason) like my writing and want to see more work from me of this pairing, I have some bits of good news. First off, shameless advertising, I'm co-writing a fic with eksley05 that will be posted on our joint account that is appropriately called superbestfriends. It's going to be pretty cool, I'll be doing a chapter from Craig's point of view and then she'll do one from Tweek's, and it's going to be a pretty interesting plot if I do say so myself, so check that out. Secondly, I'm working on two really long oneshots for this pairing, I can't say when they'll be done, but I'll have them up at some point. :D
Well, thanks again and, once more, I wouldn't mind a review or two. Let me know what you thought of the story as a whole, especially, if you can. Thanks for reading through this whole thing!