A/N: This is mostly me trying—and failing epically—a hand at a mostly-dialogue fic, with the concept being more… straightforward than my other ones. Dunno if it works for me, though… So, um. Yeah. Con-crit, plzkthx?
And it ended up looking like one hella huge zebra of a fic. .___.
The story is thus:
There was a boy, and he wanted to leave.
Simple as that. Unfortunately most things that go on in real life rarely get down to that level; there are millions of ideas out there that are terminated, barely digested, before they are even simplified enough to a form that most people would understand. The people do understand, of course—or how would we go on living?—but only superficially. On a smaller scale, say in a little hick town out in the middle of nowhere, things would go haywire pretty fast; not to say that things get simpler down there, rather that the people do.
After all, what can you really expect in a place like South Park?
Everything there, Stan thought, seemed larger than life. It was not a sentiment, rather a fact, only because its residents were already accustomed to it, and did not—or could not—know anything else. You get stuck in shit long enough, you get used to it; adaptation was something humans were good at, something that has enabled us to exterminate millions of organisms each day, without remorse. And who really did care, after all, apart from nature-loving hippies?
Oh—but that's not the point. The story continues as below.
"I want to go out," he had told them that day, when they were on the roof of the school, throwing cigarette butts at irate pedestrians. "Like, see the world. Walk around. Get something more than this kind of life; boring, routine, jaded. Wouldn't that be awesome?"
Cartman had replied with something along the lines of 'that's fucking stupid' and Kyle wasn't listening, at least not then. With a sigh, Stan resigned himself to staring off into space before he was interrupted, and surprisingly so.
"Let's go, then," the blond had said, his clear blue eyes gazing steadily into the other boy's. "It'll be one hell of an adventure, won't it?"
Cartman raised an eyebrow. "Kenneh, you're piss poor. How the fuck are you gonna go?"
"I'll find a way."
And he did.
"Kenny, you sure about this?" Stan felt sort of nervous, jittery but excited. The morning was clear, and the air cool with the first hints of autumn. They were in front of Stan's house, on a motorbike that had obviously seen better days. It looked ready to fall apart at any second, and he told Kenny so. "Shouldn't we like, tell someone first? Does Kyle know?"
"C'mon, Stan. It'll be fun. And it's not like we don't have money or shit, we can just hijack someone if this thing breaks down—"
"More like when." The dark-haired boy eyed it suspiciously. The thing might've been white once, lifetimes ago. "And money? Where in the world did you…?"
His voice suddenly sounded shy, as if he were parting a great secret. Actually, it might as well be, given his circumstances. "I'd… saved up some. Not a lot, but we might as well have something. You?"
Stan felt, for some reason, that he should not ask how much Kenny actually had on. It frightened him, and underneath that came a feeling of shame. It is not always easy, letting go of your standards and morals for others'. "I really… have no idea. I guess about a thousand or so."
Kenny shrugged. "Doesn't matter. Everything will be fine, Stan. Seriously."
"How'd you know? We might get mugged or something, kidnapped, get sold to whorehouses… oh, and shit, you haven't even told me where we're going yet."
"It won't be a surprise if I did." He smiled. "Got it? Now hop on and let's go."
They passed through towns that looked a lot like South Park, and a lot less creepy.
They passed through national parks and forests and plains and mountains. There were places where the road winded down to little streets, and huge highways which nearly scared the shit out of them, two small-town boys on a big adventure. Kenny had almost got eaten by a mountain lion and Stan fell down a ravine after they collided with a trucker from Utah. It wasn't much; just the typical shit that happens when you go on road trips.
It felt surreal, Stan noted, once they came out of Colorado. As if, somehow, the worlds had shifted, and they were not in the same country anymore. Perhaps that was it; after all, where else in the world could you find a nation so diverse? Shit happens, but maybe not everywhere. It was food for thought, probably untrue but digestible. Who knows?
Then again, he didn't really know the purpose of this trip to begin with, other than the fact that they were young and stupid and wanted to accomplish big things. He had no idea why Kenny would want to go with him, why he'd been the one to even suggest doing it for real. Maybe he was sick of being poor and having everyone know it. Maybe it was just a spur-of-the-moment thing. There were a lot of maybe's, and maybe there wasn't really a reason at all.
Sometimes I think I think too damn much.
And most of those things were never to be said. Stan wondered later that would, had he chosen the right moment to say them, or had even thought of saying them, things have turned out differently. He supposed it wouldn't, but it wouldn't have hurt to have said them. Not one damn bit.
It was better that way, anyhow.
Kenny stopped his battered motorcycle in front of what looked like a huge sprawl of trees. "God, I'd never thought we'd really get this far. But damn, isn't it?"
"You're kidding me." A pause. "Kenny, you are serious about this…"
"I don't know. It just feels like… we need some away time. From everyone else… yeah. You know, that feeling that you get when you need something, but don't know how to explain it?"
"Yeah, but… Katahdin? This place? Fucking hell, we came two thousand miles just for more mountains?"
"Kenny, remind me to kill you when I get home."
Stan wasn't kidding, of course. But it didn't matter; he had already been sucked in by the scenery, and fascinated by the fact that—damn!—they actually had been able to get across the good ol' US of A without getting into any serious accidents. He thought he could almost see a black bear in the brambles back where their bike was parked.
Shit happens, Kenny thought.
"Well," the blond said, bleeding on one side of his face. "That was close."
The other boy smiled a little nervously. "Do you know where the real trail is? We might be just a little safer there. And after all, I don't think we're supposed to be—"
"Warbler." He scanned the red-and-gold treetops, looking for signs of the bird. "They'd be migrating about now, I guess. Cute little things."
"…I never knew you were into bird watching. What happened to girls in bikinis and pot?"
"There's a lot of things you don't know about me, then." Stan apparently didn't quite know what to make of that statement; so, with a sigh, he continued. "It's like, along the way, I wondered why I even suggested doing this in the first place. Maybe you wondering about it in the beginning was what got me thinking, I don't know. Like, we've been friends for so long, but not really. Get it?"
"You've always been best friends with Kyle." The statement was flat, unmoving, and all of a sudden Stan knew, somewhat, that there was some hint of jealously in the tone. "I… it's not like I don't want you guys to be, you know? But Cartman… he just doesn't cut it for me. It just makes me a little… envious, I guess, when you guys go off by yourselves to do something, and I didn't know what to make of that. I know you guys weren't exactly… ostracizing me, for no reason, but it didn't feel that good, actually. Naturally I turned to porno magazines and girls, but it just doesn't feel the same, not without friends around. You get what I mean?"
"I guess." He was silent for a while, contemplating on the thought. Did I ever see this coming? I did, didn't I? And what happened, then? "Why did you bring me, then? If I was, well, yeah. And I guess I should say I'm… sorry? Shit, dude, this is… different. Feels weird and right at the same time."
"Mm. I don't think that was needed."
"An apology. That wasn't… wasn't what I was looking for. I'm okay with that. It's just… you, I think. That's what gets to me."
"Apparently it's not getting to me. Man, this is fucked up, but I guess I could take it. Never heard you say this much before, y'know. Go ahead. Shoot."
"…Stan, would you care if I'm bisexual?"
"…" No, not really. Too many weird things have happened already; why would this freak me out? The words rolled around on the tip of his tongue, precariously waiting to fall but never really doing so.
He asked himself, am I really that freaked out?
The mind told him, yes, you are. Now tell him that. And leave. You don't want to be here any longer than I do, yes? This is majorly fucked up. Tell him so, dude. Tell him.
"Damn," he said. "Really?"
Go away, Stan said to his mind. Seriously, dude. It's not all that bad. Now fuck off before I do something you'll—
"Yeah. Funny isn't it, man? I've always been around girls, felt them and had sex with them and all that jazz. I wonder what it'll be like with a guy."
See there, the mind whispered back to Stan. I think he wants to fuck you.
"Kenny," his voice cracked a little; it was somewhat scary, even for him, to ask something so… unreal. "Do you… want to… do it? With me? Is that what you're asking?"
Oh, what the fucking hell.
"Stan…" The blond looked as if he was constipated. Or at least, about to explode from… something. "No. I don't. And it's not about me; it's about you. What you want."
"I'm not gay."
"Never said you were. Although you could be having a thing with Kyle…"
"Okay, okay." He paused, brow furrowed in thought. It seemed a more difficult thing to talk about, even once everything had already been thrown onto the table. "I don't think you're happy. That's what I'm talking about."
"No, seriously. You've gone through the days looking like a zombie ever since you broke up with Wendy, and even before that, well… let's just say it felt kind of weird to me. Don't you get tired of every day being the same? I know I am."
"You're starting to sound like Kyle."
A laugh. "No shit. I've talked to him about this before. He's got some pretty whacked up theories about you; you could ask him when you get home, I suppose."
"And what does this have to do with me being unhappy?"
"You've never been dead." He shrugged. "Maybe it just made me a little fucked in the head, but I guess you needed a little… getting away. Wasn't that what you said, when we were on that roof? Like… shit, it's been three weeks already. Can you believe that?"
"Not one bit." I guess it all really does kind of make sense, then. "Dude, I kinda get it now. And not really. I guess I did need to go. It just felt like we were rotting away there; why stay, I mean, when you can get the kind of fresh air and everything out here? It's so fucking... different, dude. I don't even know why, it just does."
"Not so pissed about it being mountains anymore, I take it?"
"No shit. But I still get to kill you."
There are only so many things one can do in his lifetime. Kenny gazed at Stan and the trees around him, the wind in their hair and smiles on their faces. It was one helluva beautiful day, and he knew it was only going to get better.