A/N: Drop a review and let me know what you think, and if I should continue this. I won't continue it if I don't get any reviews. Do I need to tell you that I don't own this?
"Dude, put the book down. It's Friday afternoon, officially the weekend. No homework allowed." No way was I going to let Sam ruin my weekend with his "study session" crap.
"Fred," Sam began, pushing his glasses up the bridge of his nose, "As much as I'd like to relax, we have that History exam first thing Monday morning. And, let's face it; you and Joe don't know anything about the Hundred Years' War. I'd be more than happy to help you out."
Joe looked between us, not sure if he wanted to contribute to the conversation yet.
Wait, history? No thanks. I wasn't in the mood for warping. On our last trip a month ago, I'd broken my arm in Mesopotamia and I had to miss basketball tryouts.
"This isn't about laziness, Sam." I explained. "Every single time we talk about history or do history homework or whatever, that fucking book shows up out of nowhere and we're somewhere else. This has been going on for years, and I'm still not used to it. I usually love that kind of stuff, but I don't want to fight cavemen or Red Coats or Indians today."
"Actually, the politically correct term is 'Native Americans'." He informed me matter-of-factly. Did he listen to a word I just said, or was he just waiting for an opportunity to correct me?
"Well, yes. I wouldn't feel comfortable with you using any offensive-"
"Jesus, man. Shut up. I am so sick of you talking to me like I'm stupid. We're on the same level, okay? We're equals. So quit being such a condescending asshole." Whoops. I snapped. I hadn't meant to raise my voice, but I was almost shouting.
Joe, recognizing his duty as referee, finally spoke up. "Listen, Fred, the fact is, we don't know what triggers the warping. It's happened sometimes when we weren't talking about history at all. So it would be really cool if you apologized to Sam. That was kind of rude of you to say. He's the one trying to help you, after all."
Sam just blinked behind his glasses, eyes on the floor. Jeez. He almost looked hurt.
"Fine." I said eventually. "I'm sorry, Sam."
Sam didn't say anything. He was still squinting at the floor. "Sam? I said I'm sorry. Come on, don't be a jerk."
I followed Sam's gaze toward the floor under Joe's bed, where a little wisp of vapor was barely visible. I knew what was coming.
There was no use in running. The foggy, greenish mist leaked out from under the bed and formed little clouds around our ankles. Then, quick as anything, we were gone.
There was a split second, as there always is, when we're between two places, when we're just nowhere at all. (I always hate that split second. I hate being nowhere. I'd rather be a million years from home than nowhere at all.) But it was quickly over, and we were sitting on the ground under a tree. I could see a village nearby.
Joe and Sam didn't move or speak for a moment. I think they were waiting for my reaction. I slowly turned to Sam. I wonder what my expression looked like, because it scared the shit out of him. He started crawling away backwards, eyes wide, anticipating a punch in the face. Oh jeez.
I felt my face soften. "Sam, I'm not going to hurt you. Relax."
He did, but I could tell he was still thinking about running away as fast as his scrawny legs could take him.
"Chill, Sam," Joe muttered. "Let's just figure out where we are, get the book, and get out."
We wandered into the nearby village and went searching for some new clothes. We'd learned, after a few years of warping, that it's best to blend in. We managed to find a nice seamstress and bought some clothes with the money Joe had earned from his street performing. We went back to the tree to change. I was less than pleased with our disguises.
"No way. I am not wearing that."
Colored panty hose. COLORED PANTY HOSE. That's…ugh. No way. No way in a million years.
"Look, Fred, I know it seems odd, but this was the style." Sam assured me. He pushed his glasses up his nose as he examined his own doublet. "By the looks of it, I'd say we're in France somewhere around the 1400's."
I grumbled to myself as I put on the stupid things, followed by a doublet and a nasty tunic. "We're in the 1400's. Of course we are."
At least Sam and Joe had to look stupid, too. That provided some consolation. Also, Sam is the skinniest, so he had to wear the smallest, tightest set of panty hose. The sight was entertaining, to say the least.
Once we got changed and had a while to wander around the village, I was feeling much better. Even though I hadn't wanted to leave my own cozy little century, I was having fun exploring and meeting different people from different times.
I told myself not to have fun. The little Sam part of my brain told me that it was dangerous in this time and I should just help find the book. But since when do I listen to the real Sam, let alone my conscience?
About five minutes later, I was enjoying a pint of ale. And by "enjoying", I mean "chugging". Sam shot me his disapproving glance, to which I responded with my middle finger. Joe laughed and took a swig.
We kept walking around with Sam while he asked people if they'd seen a book. Naturally, nobody had. Eventually, Joe noticed that the village was awfully sparse. Sam shrugged and said "Well, yeah. There's a war going on." Joe and I looked at each other. Sam rolled his eyes, in that annoyed way he does. "Do you guys study at all?"
But before Sam could go on, someone tapped my shoulder. I turned around to see two women, probably in their early twenties. Ordinarily, that's the kind of thing I'd like to see, but these chicks were no sight for sore eyes.
"Why are you men not in the war?" The taller, sicker-looking one asked us. "We need all the help we can get."
"Uh…well…" Joe began, but I jumped right in. "We came over from Transylvania to help with the war effort!"
Joe and Sam glared at me. What can I say? I love excitement, and I'm a sucker for a good war. So, anyway, that's how I got those nice ladies to direct us towards the campsite, which was a good few miles away.
Sure, it was a rather tense hike, but not nearly as painful as what we would find when we got there…