A/N: I know, I know. Not the update that anyone wanted, but I'm working on it. u.u
Part One: You Must First Press One
Dedicated to Gaby, because this may turn out to be us in Atlanta.
Bridgette sighed, hitting the back of her head against the stall barrier she was presently leaning against.
Really, could tonight get any worse?
Well, to be honest, Courtney could start up about all of her C.I.T training again, or one of those reunion-special obsessed T.D.I. assholes could show up with a camera to see "Where They Are Now", but aside from that, the possibilities were fairly harmless (providing harmless meant the big L 'n NL: Legal 'n Non-Lethal).
A sob from the stall just about broke Bridgette's heart...again.
"Courtney...? Are you okay? Court?" she called gently.
She'd warned her not to drink the punch, but shortly thereafter the girl had made a beeline for the booby-trapped fruit juice. She wasn't sure if that was Duncan's influence in the creation of what she now "affectionately" called Abortney, or just some strange, latent sense of masochism.
With the girl's genetics, you could never be too sure.
"No, Bridggg...Imm dessim--decidu--decidedly not okkk--screwit."
"Do you wanna open the door so we can talk about it?"
"There," Courtney sniffed, "...'ren't anny cameras, right?"
Hell if Bridgette didn't hate the camera boys now more than ever. Even if that last one with the shaggy hair kind of reminded her of Geoff. She growled lightly. Bastards had them all afraid to get back into contact with anyone for fear of more shark-bungee-ing, blowfish-eating 'fun'.
It was almost enough to drive a sane person to suicide.
Then again, that would probably just help Chris's godforsaken ratings.
But none of them were really "sane" anymore.
"No, Court, there aren't any cameras."
There was a few minutes' worth of silence before Bridgette realized that Courtney had forgotten what they were talking about.
Wasn't really surprising, considering the lengths of awesome stupidity she'd prevented the other girl from diving into. It was never a good thing to be surrounded by that many guys when you were that piss-drunk.
Especially not when you were calling them all Duncan.
G-d, was that incriminating evidence.
Bridgette was about to go psycho-anti-pacifist on whoever spiked the damn punch when Courtney finally made another attempt at human speech (outside of the drunken attempts at what sounded suspiciously like 'Nobody Likes Me, Everybody Hates Me').
"Yeah, Courtney Cuddles?" Bridgette said in a disturbingly maternal voice.
"I lovve you, y'knnow? But, like, d'you lovvve me?"
"Yeah, I love you, Courtney Cuddles. I wouldn't be sitting on this nasty floor otherwise."
A big, flashing neon sign in her mind heralded 'WRONG ANSWER'.
"Hey, hey! It's all right! I happen to think that the tile pattern is...really...interesting! See the pretty colors? And you can find all kinds of patterns..."
She could die.
"...Are you retarrrded?"
Even drunk, Courtney could tell, too.
"Okay, so it probably looks a lot prettier to you than me, being that you're, you know, three sheets and a 21-gun salute to the wind, but I'd rather be here with your crazy ass than out there with those dumbasses."
What was the plural of dumbasses, anyway? Dumbassi? (She'd had a glass herself, before flying to the rescue--she needed it for bathroom floor-duty.)
"Tha' meannss a lot, even though I wonn't remm'mber it, Bridges. Yer a awesome friennd."
"I know. So you just go on and keep making your point. I'm here for you."
"I know you are, but like....why isn't he?"
"Uh...Court? This would be so much more appropriate if he actually knew you didn't still profess to 'hate his eternal, stinking guts'."
And that was the nice version.
"But I DO!"
"No you don't, sweetie."
"An' he hatesss myyy guts, tooooo! It's, like, our thing!"
"No he doesn't, Court. In fact--"
"Yes he does, now shut up and take the waterworks--" A lipstick-slinging redhead scowled from the sinks.
"Get off my planet, bitch!" Bridgette growled in a fashion that was quickly becoming way too instinctive.
There were no further protests.
One simply did not mess with a Nature Girl. They knew all the hard-to-find forest trails where bodies could be cleverly hidden.
It was almost their Quittin' Time.
This being, of course, when Bridgette finally managed to haul Courtney's inebriated ass out of any given bathroom, cleaned her up, and drove her to the convenience store near their apartment. At said convenience store, she would remove the keys from the ignition (just to be safe) and dart inside for five minutes, where she would grab two (2) large tubs of their favorite ice cream and head for the register. At this point, the employee working said register (Jeremy. Cute, but not Geoff cute.) would jokingly ask her if she wanted to put it on 'their tab', at which point Bridgette would blow him a raspberry/flip him off, pay, and be on her merry way.
"Court...whether or not Duncan 'lurves' you isn't something we're likely going to find out in here, so uh...how's about we blow this pop stand?"
She sniffed, "I look like shit."
"But you're C.I.T. shit."
"Shuddup..." Courtney snorted in something distantly related to normal humor.
"All right, all right. ...You want a Kleenex?"
"Tha'd would be wudderful..."
Oh, good. The congestion was mingling with the spiked fruit drink to make Courtney's voice even more pathetic.
Honestly, there wasn't much more the universe could do to make it painfully obvious that Bridgette had fucked up the whole 'preserving a friend's dignity' thing.
"Okay, I'm just gonna slide my purse to you, all right?"
Bridgette made a (yet again) perfectly rehearsed sliding motion with her arm, without turning around and (tried and true method) with minimal grime-damage to her oh-so-practical bathroom-crawling handbag.
There was a short bit of ruffling, followed by some unladylike nose-blowing, then finally...
Oh, fuck, no--
The familiar beeping of a cellular device was her first tipoff that she had made a horrible, horrible mistake.
Courtney goes to party, Courtney gives up phone. As a general rule, phone stays away from Courtney all night.
Her once-pleasantly buzzed brain was now working overtime.
She'd only ever had to scale a stall once, as she absolutely refused to crawl under.
She knew exactly what their acquaintances, especially, thought of as 'bathroom fun'.
"Ugh," she grunted, attempting to hoist herself up despite the lack of footholds, "Shit. ...Courtney?"
She got nothing but more fumbling beeps and a few sniffles in reply.
She returned to the floor for a moment, rubbing her collarbone to ease what she knew would be another impressive 'battle bruise'.
"Court? Honey? What are you doing?"
"I was hoping you wouldn't say that. Look, Court? You don't want to call him. Trust me."
'Oh, G-d, yes, I hope so.'
"Ullleave a messsage."
"Damn it, Courtney, you're going to regret it in the morning!"
"Izz already mornin' in TAIWAAAAN!"
"Courtney, how did you even find his number?"
"And you have it memorized because?"
"B-because I," another sobbing fit, "I dooon't hate his eternal, stinking gu-hic-uts!"
Absently, Bridgette noticed that A. the congestion seemed a little better, and B. under any other circumstances, this would be kind of funny, maybe even cute, but at present it was more like one of Chris' twisted-ass challenges.
"That's great, Courtney, and I'm glad that you've realized your feelings, but maybe you'd like to make this call when you weren't, you know, sitting in a toilet stall, drunk off your ass?"
The congestion was back.
"Court, think about this."
"I bid thiggin' aboud it!"
"Think some more? Maybe over a nice tub of ice cream?"
"Do'd wad ice creab. Jus' Dunnncan."
Funny how the 'N's in 'Duncan' came out perfectly clear.
Oh hell, she had it on speaker, too!
Rrrr--"Duncan Ferratti--hurry up and talk."
"Hey Dunc--Dunky Dunk Donk...Dunkin' Do'nnuts."
"...What the hell? ...Courtney?! Courtney, is that you?!"
"Hi, Funky Dunkyyyy...I misssssyouuuuuu!"
"Heh...I miss you, too, Princess...."
"Are you SUUUURE, 'cause Lond'nn Bridge 'an me? We were talkin' an' I'm prretty sure you haaaate my 'ternal, stinkin' gutzzzz..."
"Your eternal what?"
"Gutsss! My guts. Our thing," she sniffled.
"...Court? Court, don't get pissed or anything, but you sound kinda..."
"Drunnnk...? 'Cuz I am. Youuu make me drinnnk."
"I make you drink? ....Princess, where are you? Are you safe? Courtney?!"
"Awww, you'wworried abou' me? Reeeally?"
Bridgette winced, weighing her options as she looked around desperately.
"Yes, Courtney. I'm worried about you. I need you to try to answer a few questions, okay?"
Wow. This was something she thought she'd never hear. Was Duncan being a 'responsible adult'?
"Mmmmkay, Dunkin' Donutsss."
"Okay, first question: Where are you? The caller ID says you're with Bridgette; is she taking care of you?"
Courtney giggled, "Thasss two questions, Dunky. Umm...I dun' remember ann yyyep! Bridgey's like, totally mom righ' now. She'ss tryin'a take th' phone now, but I don' wann'er to!"
"Neither do I, Princess..." Duncan mumbled, almost missing perception. Courtney just giggled some more.
"Bu' Dunky, you don' call me 'er nothin'!"
A grunt, then, "Round two, Princess: Are you safe?"
Courtney calmed down a little, ".....No...."
"No?! Court, where the hell are you? I need you to think hard. Where are you?"
Bridgette cocked her head. Wow. He really was acting mature.
"Noooo. I miss you, Dunc'n! An' you never called or--or anything!"
"You won't miss me when you're sober, sweetheart. Look, can you do me a favor? I want you to try to give the phone to Bridgette."
"Liar! An' no, I'm not givin' you to Bridgey. You're not goin' 't leave me alone like thhhat!"
"Sshhhh, Princess. ....Okay, look, if you give the phone to Bridgette, I swear to you right now that I will come and see you as soon as she gets you home."
"...Okay. ...Whass question three?"
"Gud things c'm in threes, Dunky. Y'have to ask another one 'fore I hand you over."
Bridgette resisted the urge to 'awww' at the situation before she heard the response.
"All right, Princess. What's your bra size?"
MATURITY DOWN! MATURITY DOWN!
"Hhhhuh? Oh...m' bra size izzzz--"
"COURTNEY! Give me the fucking PHONE!"
"My thoughts exactly."
"I can hear you." Bridgette fumed, "Look, Courtney, Dunky coming to see you hinges on whether he knows our address, and since that little piece of information is something only I know right now, I'm advising you not to answer that."
"Okaaay," Courtney sighed, finally unbolting the stall door, only to have it swing inward with Bridgette still hanging by it.
"OW!" she yelped, her arms and head hitting the wall hard before sliding to the ground. "OwowowowowOW!"
"Ahhh! S'rrrryyyy, Bridgey."
"Bridgette? Holy shit, are you okay?"
"Give. Me. The phone." She stated simply, looking dead-on at her inebriated friend.
Her first act as phone recipient was to turn off the speaker. Her second was to attempt to salvage some dignity.
"Duncan? That's enough out of you, Mister."
"Awwww, but she hasn't even mentioned being a C.I.T. yet," Duncan taunted.
"Kiss my ass. I'm calling Geoff."
"'Bout time, too."
"Har-dee-har. Since you're such good friends-"
"We live together."
"Ah, irony. Anyway, since you're such good friends, he shouldn't have a problem giving you the address, gentleman that he is."
Courtney gave an indignant little alkie-shriek.
"Careful. We're friends. That whole nasty 'Dick Loyalty' thing might bite you in said ass."
"Maybe I'm looking forward to it," she said tiredly.
Duncan just laughed and hung up the phone.