Me: HOLY SHIT, I'M UPDATING SOMETHING!
Fang: Call all the newspapers, call the president, call the BBC.
Fang: Figured they could make a Doctor Who episode out of this.
Me: Is it that odd?
Fang: Do you need to ask?
Me: Yeah, it's that odd. I don't need to hear about how I don't update enough, people, I know. I'm overwhelmed with work and homework and life. I write when I can, and, if I'm not feeling it, I can't write. I never stop writing, I just... Write slower...
And ok. Not every A/N needs to be me making excuses for my slow updates. My updates are slow. You all get this.
Though, I'm hoping I can speed things up with this story at least...
Fang: How so?
Me: This... New idea...
"You're kidding me."
"Actually, Fang, believe it or not, I'm being completely serious. Though, feel free to continue to stare at me in disbelief. That's about the face I had when John told me."
"But, we're really going?!" Nudge asked excitedly. "We're actually, really going?!"
"You heard her, Nudge." Max told her. I couldn't tell from her tone how she felt about this... News. I was sure I'd hear about it later. "We're going to Disney World."
"But what about Iggy?" Gazzy asked, concern in his voice. He wouldn't want to run around Disney without his partner in crime. "He's still stuck in bed."
"He's been healing quickly." Dr. M responded. "He can probably move a lot more than he has been, we've just been keeping him in bed and still so he doesn't make any injuries he still has worse. By the time we get down there, he should at least be able to walk around with us. Around Disney World. We're going to Disney World. Dear Lord."
Dr. Martinez said it all. We're going to Disney World. Sure, the Flock had been once, for less than a day, then chased out when we saw Ari hanging around the place. I wasn't sure if we could really count that visit. But now, we were going again. A bunch of mutant bird-children, one of them injured with a stalker on his tail, were going to Disney World.
How does this even work?
At least Dr. M sounded as struck be disbelief as I felt.
"Why, exactly, are we going to Disney World?" I asked, my tone a bit more annoyed than I intended. "I mean... Disney World? Seriously?"
"I'm with Fang." Max chimed in. I tried to contain that little spark of excitement that flared up hearing Max say she was 'with Fang'. "As much as I'd love to take the kids to visit the Land of Mouse, how is this going to help Iggy? Or... Anything, for that matter?"
"Well, it'll help Iggy in that we doubt his stalker will be able to follow him to Disney World." Dr. M pointed out. "It's a long ways from here, plus, people don't just walk into the place. We'll be together, around Iggy at all times. Second, John and some of the other CSM think you kids deserve this kind of trip and figure now is as good of a time as any. Third, when we're done with Disney, the CSM will have another safe house set up for us, far away from either of these locations, which will hopefully completely throw this stalker off Iggy's trail. All in all, do I think this is the best plan right now? Not really. But the CSM is insisting on throwing this trip at us with the excuse of 'who turns down a free trip to Disney World'? And honestly, they have a point. No one does. So, for lack of a better plan, we're going."
Max sighed, leaning back against my arm that I had draped across the couch in hopes that she'd do just that. "Well, when you put it like that..."
"WE'RE GOING TO DISNEY WORLD!" Angel screamed, jumping up and down on the chair she'd been sitting in.
"WOO-HOO!" Gazzy chimed in. "I GOTTA TELL IGGY!" I raced off, down the hall towards Iggy's room, whooping and hollaring all the way."
"WAIT FOR ME!" Ella called, following after him.
"I'm gonna start packing now!" Nudge exclaimed, racing off to her room. Angel followed behind her excitedly.
"I suppose Akila, Magnolia, and I will be staying home?" Total asked.
"John's team actually was thinking of taking Akila with them to help with setting up our new safe house, and offered to take you and Magnolia as well, if you're interested." Dr. Martinez said.
Total's ears perked up a bit. "Might not be a bad idea... Let me run it by the girls..." He trotted off, probably already planning a few romantic nights with his lady friend.
"And then, only the sane ones were left." I muttered.
Dr. Martinez sighed, dropping down in the chair recently vacated by Angel. "I'm not really sure why I'm even suggesting going through with this other than it's hard to say no to John when he gets that... Face."
"I know what you mean..." Max said, smiling over at her mom in a knowing way that had me slightly suspicious.
"So, am I seriously going to have to spend a week bunking with Mickey Mouse?" I asked.
"Well, I doubt you'll have to sleep with the guy, Fang." Dr. Martinez commented. "I don't think they provide that as a service... But yes, we'll be staying there a week."
Max, of course, was cracking up. Oh, yeah, your mom's sooo witty... "Sounds like a blast..." I muttered, just dreading this trip more and more as I thought about it.
"What's wrong, Fang?" Max asked. "I mean, I'm no big fan of this, either, but the kids are excited. It's not gonna kill us."
"Hopefully." I pointed out. "You know, the most innocent things have tried to kill us."
"True..." Max said. We had pretty much been attacked by everything.
"We'll have people there, watching." Dr. Martinez said. "You will all be protected. I can't promise that it's the safest place in the world for you and the Flock, but I can promise that the CSM will be doing everything they can to make it as safe as possible. From what I understand, they've been pulling some major strings at Disney."
"We better not have to be in a parade or something." I commented. "I am not holding Mickey's hand."
Dr. Martinez raised an eyebrow. "Fang, you seem to have the strangest fixation on having some sort of intimate relationship with Mickey Mouse."
I glared across the room at her. "You're hilarious, Dr. M. Truly hilarious..." I stood up, giving Max a quick kiss as I before straightening up. "I'm going to be in my room, trying to find clothes to pack that are somehow both cool (in both temperature and style) and that somehow still hide my wings. Then I'm going to Google a map of Disney so that I can find the best places to avoid anyone dressed up as a giant animated character, included, but not limited to Mickey Mouse. Have a good evening, see you at dinner."
As I was leaving the room, I heard Dr. Martinez's voice whisper across to Max, "High-maintanence, isn't he?"
"You know, I'm beginning to question Fang's gender identity..."
"Well, you know I don't judge-"
"WILL YOU TWO CUT IT OUT?!" I yelled back. Laughter was the only response they could manage.
And then there was only one sane member of the household left...
This is not a position any self-respecting guy should be in.
I was standing in the middle of my room, staring at my bed, which had every piece of clothing I owned on it, trying to figure out what to pack. Once upon a time, I only owned enough clothes as could fit in a backpack, but Dr. M had taken to stocking up on clothes for all of us, that were kept at her house for when we were here. Dr. Martinez had been pretty good at catching on to my desire for mostly black clothes and things big enough to hide my wings. Downside? They would all be miserable to wear in the Florida heat.
Why did we have to go to Disney World, anyway? Huge commercialized park full of strange people and claustrophobic rides that could malfunction at any moment? How did that scream "The Flock belongs here"? How did people even find that fun? Sounded like a deathtrap to me.
Typical. Point us towards a dangerous area that could possibly work as a trap? We walk right in.
But, trap or not, we were going. And I needed to have clothes to wear while I was stuck- I mean vacationing there.
I'd sorted through everything about five times, and had only found one shirt that might be usable. Everything else would be miserable. Did I seriously not own any shorts? What was wrong with me?
Oh, yeah, I didn't usually hang out in freaking Florida.
I threw down the pair of dark pants I'd been holding, completely giving up. There was no such thing as good warm-weather black clothes that would manage to still hide my wings. Like I wasn't going to be miserable enough at Disney, now I was going to roast down there in the sun, too. And there was no way I was going shopping for a whole new bunch of clothes just for this stupid trip. I owned more clothes than I wanted as it was.
"I bet Nudge has a wardrobe set aside, just for such an occasion." I muttered, picking up a crumpled shirt and attempting to fold it. "As does Ella. I bet Ella's picking out Iggy's clothes right-"
I dropped the shirt. That was it.
I raced out of my room, heading, once again, into the eye of the storm itself.
"You want to... What?" Iggy asked. He was sitting up in bed, Dr. Martinez finally trusting him to move around a bit more. I guess she was right about him being better by the time we went on this ridiculous vacation. He was definitely looking better, all his bruises gone, some of his fractures healed. Guess that would teach him to play chicken with helicopters.
"I want to, you know, borrow some of your clothes." I told him. "I'm gonna roast in Florida wearing my clothes. Yours are more..." I trailed off, trying to think of the right word.
"Brightly colored?" Iggy suggested helpfully. "Cheery? They'll fit right in with all the joy and magic surrounding us?"
"They'll be cooler." I said, making sure to sound just as unimpressed with his comments as I felt. "As in temperature."
"I feel like we should call up Disney and make an announcement." Iggy stated.
I rolled my eyes, knowing I would regret asking, but not being able to stop myself. "Why?"
"They're getting the world preimere of Fang: In Color." Iggy stated. "Technicolor finally got to you, huh? What next? 3D? Smell-O-Vision?"
I glared at him. Not that it did any good. "Seriously. I just don't want to roast to death waiting in line for some stinking teacup ride or something."
"You on the spinning Teacups." Iggy mused. "I wish I could see that... Wearing my clothes, no less..."
"Ig, come on..." I said. I'd about had it with his jokes.
"Alright, well, go through my stuff. Whatever. Just make sure to leave me with clothes to wear, alright? And no junk." Iggy added. "I won't go around Disney with Ella dressed like a hobo just so you can be cool."
"You're implying you have hobo clothes?" I asked him, turning around and opening his closet door. He didn't answer, probably trying to come up with a good sarcastic comeback. Iggy's closet was a disaster area. It looked like he had just shoved everything in here with a broom or something. Maybe he had.
I started to search through, pulling out clothes that seemed at least close to my usual style. Iggy had made a point in all his jokes. I'd look weird suddenly dressing in every color of the rainbow. Iggy did own a bunch of something that I didn't, though; shorts. I pulled out a couple pairs of jean shorts, then was lucky enough to come across one pair in black. They all looked like they'd fit me alright. I knew Iggy's stuff would be a bit bigger, but not terribly so. I could pull it off.
Another good thing about dressing in Iggy's clothes, I realized, was that it might make me a little less recognizable, since secrecy was such a big part of this trip. I wouldn't look like myself. Heck, I'd look like Ig. Hope I didn't attract his stalker...
That thought made me stop short. His stalker. How many times had that girl been through this messy closet? I stared at the mess in front of me, like some sort of clue about who she was might pop out of a pair of boxers or something. Suddenly, all of his stuff was starting to creep me out.
"All your stuff's been hanging out at the bottom of your closet..." I commented.
"Yeah, so?" Iggy replied. "Do you really think I care about a couple wrinkles in my shirt?"
"I'm just saying... This stuff should be washed." I said. Yeah. That would get rid of all the creepy stalker germs. Laundry detergent. "I'm getting a laundry basket."
"Um, Dr. M doesn't do laundry until the weekend..." Iggy reminded me unnecessarily.
"Yeah, well, that's when she does it. And she doesn't need to." I told him.
"You're going to do laundry?" Iggy asked.
"Yeah. I can handle that, Ig."
"Alright. Gotcha." Iggy replied. "Now, could you hand me a laptop and call Ella in for me?"
"I'm gonna have to shop for a new wardrobe."
"Shut the heck up."
Who knew there could be so much involved in doing laundry?
I had all of Iggy's laundry piled in a basket and I was standing in front of the washing machine in the basement, staring at the different buttons and dials, trying to figure the stupid thing out.
I mean, how hard could this be, right? You just put the laundry in with soap and stuff, then set the dials and pressed 'start'.
Except, there was no start button.
And the dials were confusing.
And there was so much different laundry stuff, I wasn't sure what to use.
I stared into the pile of Iggy's laundry for a bit. I knew certain things were supposed to be sorted and washed separately, but I had no idea where to start. And didn't some of this stuff shrink if you washed it the wrong way?
So I gave it some thought, then shrugged and just started shoving everything in.
Like, it probably should be fine. Not like Iggy can see what he's wearing, anyway. I mean, most of his stuff was all colors and similar fabric, it should be fine.
As for what to use, that was confusing, so I made that easier, too. I poured a bit from three different bottles into the washer, figuring the more soap there was, the more stalker germs I'd destroy. Then I threw in a couple of these little sheet things that kinda looked like tissue paper, since it looked like it was supposed to make everything smell better.
From there, I just played around with the dials, turning them, hoping something would make it go. Finally, one seemed like it was stuck, so I pulled on it and, bam, water started flowing.
I stepped back, admiring my work. Max had been making jokes that I wouldn't last a day in a domestic situation without someone there to feed me and clean up after me, but I had just proven her wrong. See? I could figure out this household crap.
"Fang? What are you doing?"
I turned toward the stairs to see Ella coming down, carrying what looked like an old broom. "Iggy's laundry."
She gave me a skeptical look. "Fang, how... Surprising. So you're going for the domestic end of the relationship, huh? Be good for Justin, having a stay-at-home dad."
I glared at her. "I figured I'd get all the stalker germs out of his clothes."
Her look of skepticism turned to shock. "Oh my God, you are actually doing his laundry."
"Well, yeah." I said. Did she not understand the words coming out of my mouth?
"Oh my God, what did you do, Fang?" She asked. "I bet all the colors are going to run, or everything will shrink... Dear God, you're going to blow up mom's washer."
I rolled my eyes. "Is it so hard to believe that I can actually figure out how to do something as simple as run a washer?"
"Fang, don't be ridiculous. You can't use a vegetable peeler without cutting yourself. Dude, you need a babysitter or something if you're going to keep getting into trouble like this." She walked over, pushing past me to stare at the washer. "What did you put in it?"
I stared at the washer to see soap suds forming at the little window in front. "Laundry soap. And some... Clothes tissue."
"Clothes tissue?" She asked, sounding confused.
I picked up the box and showed it to her. "These things. They make clothes smell good."
She groaned. "Fang, those are dryer sheets. You put them in the dryer, not the washer."
"Oh." I put the box back down, shrugging. "Well, can't do that much damage."
"But your soap can." Ella said, pointing to the washer.
I looked back at the washer, watching as more soap suds began to form. Actually, all I could see were soap suds.
"How much soap did you put in?" Ella asked, not able to take her eyes off the washer.
"Just poured in some from three different bottles." I replied, my eyes glued to the growing mass of suds as well.
"I'm... Gonna get mom..." Ella said, backing away from the machine, moving like any sudden movements might cause it to explode.
"You do that..." I said, watching as the suds grew and the washer began to shake slightly. Were the suds starting to... Leak out of the door?
"I swear to God, Fang."
"You, uh, shouldn't swear to him, Dr. M. I hear he's not a big fan of that."
"Don't you dare joke with me right now."
I don't think I'd ever seen Dr. Martinez this pissed off. I've seen bad, sure. And I've seen Max pissed off, and that was downright scary, but Dr. Martinez brought anger to a whole new level.
Worst part was, I couldn't quite figure out if she was mad at me specifically, or just the world in general.
She sighed, putting a hand to her head as if to try to block a headache from reaching it. "The flu. The chickenpox. Eating rotten hard-boiled eggs. The washing machine."
"Don't forget when Ari tried to turn him into mincemeat." Max said. "You're weren't there, but that's how we ended up with Anne."
"And NyQuil!" Gazzy added. "Don't forget the NyQuil incident!"
"And don't forget about poor Justin!" Nudge added.
"Hey!" I shot back. "What about Iggy falling through an entire forest? And he gave me chickenpox! And it was his laundry! AND HE INVENTED JUSTIN, DAMN IT!"
"Don't blame all this on Iggy." Dr. Martinez said.
"Poor Justin..." Angel whispered, hugging Celeste.
"But... Iggy... " I groaned, falling back against the couch. "Fine. Whatever. I won't touch anything ever."
"Not a bad idea..." Ella muttered.
"Oh, Fang, stop being such a martyr." Dr. Martinez replied. "I'm just wondering what happened to your common sense!"
"I've been wondering that for years..." Max replied.
"Look, I just... Some things seem like a good idea at the time, you know?" I tried to explain.
"You need to learn to stop and think about the consequences of your actions." Dr. M lectured, crossing her arms.
"I do! Most of the time..." I answered. I did. It was a skill I'd used to survive, being able to look at a situation and think through every possible route I could take with it and every possible consequence to each. But sometimes, I didn't have the time to think, or didn't think I needed to. And sometimes... I just didn't want to. Is it so bad to just want to follow an impulse every now and then?
Obviously, it was.
Dr. Martinez sighed again, rolling her head to look up at the ceiling before looking back down at me where I sat on the couch. "Look, can you just... Just... Don't touch anything at Disney. Or on our way to Disney. Don't try to make food, don't try to do laundry, don't try to... Do anything domestic. If you don't know how it works, don't touch it. If you don't know how to do something, ask someone else to do it. Please, please, please don't blow up the Magic Kingdom. Please."
"God, you make me sound accident-prone-"
"Fang!" Max snapped. "Promise my mother you won't blow up the Magic Kingdom."
"Alright, I promise, whatever." I said, refusing to meet anyone's eye at this point. This was ridiculous, embarrassing. I make a couple stupid little mistakes and everyone thinks I'm gonna burn down Cinderella's Castle. Jerks.
"Fang, don't be like that."
"You're all jerks."
"Fang, we're just concerned..."
"I just wanted to get the stalker germs out."
"Oh, forget it."
"What were you doing Iggy's laundry for, anyway?" Ella asked.
"I... Needed some good Florida clothes..." I started to explain.
Dr. M rolled her eyes. "Fang, you'll be fine. I'll buy you shorts. It's not gonna be that hot, so you can wear the rest of your clothes. Oh my God. I'm going to take up drinking..."
"Not being a very good role model."
"I swear to God, Fang, don't even-"
Fang: DISNEY WORLD?!
Me: I know, I know. Weirdness. Trust me, it wasn't actually my plan to seriously send them to Disney World. It wasn't. It just sort of... Happened. It was the only thing I felt like writing. And... I enjoyed writing it and I've got ideas for it that actually sound like awesomeness so maybe just maybe updates.
Fang: Sounds like the miracle plot.
Me: Don't say too much yet. Every time I try and make a comeback in fanfic writing, it falls through. Don't wanna get people's hopes to high up.
Fang: Well, let's at least give them this.