Authors Notes: And here's another Gregory Horror Show fanfic from me!
Although this is something of a side project while I'm working on 'A reality miscalculated' I wanted to write a short story that just had GHS characters in it and came up with this, enjoy!

James the Terrible.
Chapter One - At his wits end.

It was a normal day within the Gregory House hotel, well...as normal as it could be in such a place like that anyway.
And the residents were quite happy going about their daily business...all of them that is, except for one.
Somewhere in one of the hotel's corridors sat the hotel manager's grandson, James; who was currently sulking from his latest scolding.

Don't touch that!

Don't do that!

Don't run around so much!

Keep the noise down in there!

Don't make a mess!

The number of times James had received such scolding words from his Grandfather were practically as regular as the passing of the days themselves; that it just wasn't funny to the little mouse anymore, needless to say that James was currently reeling in anger from the latest scolding he'd received.

" I dont understand why Grandpa got so angry" he muttered as he rubbed his sore ear, after Gregory had pulled it once again; as next to the verbal scolding, that was his usual form of discipline for his Grandson.
" All I did was tie Chef's shoe laces together, it was just a joke...I didn't know that he'd be holding a scolding pot of stew in his hands"

Although as he thought back to it, James then chuckled mischeviously to himself.
" But it was kind of funny to watch...he just went ker-splat and the stew went flying! That stupid guest picked the wrong time to look into the kitchen; that's for sure!" he said as the image of a poor human guest getting soaked with scolding hot stew went through the little boy's mind.
" Grandpa sent the guest to see Aunty Catherine...I know that poor guy is going to get more than he bargained for"

Yet as soon as James had started to think about how the guest was doing now and thought of perhaps actually checking up on the unfortunate soul, his mind was quick to switch onto thinking of something else and any thought of checking up on the guest was soon forgotten.
" Ahhh well, that was fun while it lasted...now I wonder what else I can do around here?"
Turning his attention to the corridor ahead of him, James jumped onto his feet and just started to eagerly run down it with no regard for the likelihood that he would most likely trip himself up at some point.

Elsewhere, Gregory was currently sat in the hotel's lounge with a freshly made cup of tea held firmly in his hand...although he was meant to be cleaning the said-room, he figured that he'd at least try and bide a little bit of time to soothe his otherwise frazzled nerves.
" That boy is really starting to bite off more than he can chew" the old mouse muttered bitterly as he sipped at the warm liquid in the cup and quickly gulped it down before speaking up again.

" Trying to calm Chef down was an absolute nightmare this time...James knows exactly how the hotel chef feels about his cuisines and seeing it strewn all over the place by what appeared to be by his own hands was almost too much for him to bare" sitting back in the comfort of the sofa, Gregory remembered how the aforementioned chef had practically flailed about frantically when he'd seen his stew ruined; that demonic candle had attempted to slice everything and anyone in his path before the hotel manager had to resort to blowing out the flame on the chef's hat.
" I hate having to do that every single time he throws a tantrum...but if it's the only way..." the old mouse just sighed and shook his head in despair.
" If only James was that easy to keep under control, it would certainly make my life a whole lot easier"

But alas, such a wish was out of reach for Gregory and he knew it; practically no one in this hotel could keep that child in-check, not even Gregory Mama and she was the most feared resident within the household...of course she rarely showed interest in raising the child and had left all responsibility to Gregory, as if he had enough responsibilities already.
Falling silent after that, the old mouse just stared into the nearly empty tea cup as he started to become lost in thought; the only thing that snapped him out of it is when the door to the lounge opened, causing him to jolt out of shock and spill the rest of the tea onto his lap.

In through the door came the hotel nurse, Catherine; who was currently taking a break from her usual duty of taking blood from her patients.
Looking over to the sofa, the lizard woman was greeted with the sight of a rather sour-faced Gregory who was muttering a few choice words under his breath as he tried to clean the tea off of himself.
" Oh dear, Gregory...it's a little early to be using that kind of language don't you think?" she quipped as she took a seat beside him.

" Yes, well most people knock before they come in" came Gregory's quick ( and grumpy-sounding) response as he dabbed at his wet fur with a part of his jacket, the scolding sensation from the tea had faded slightly and eventually he just decided to leave it be.

" That may be true if it was the bathroom or someone's room, but this is a public room so there's no reason to knock...anyway, the one who usually goes around knocking on doors is James" Catherine countered back in a dry tone; ignoring Gregory's sulky huff as she wriggled into the sofa a little in order to get herself comfortable, her line of sight slowly going towards the lounge's TV as one of her favourite television shows started.

Yet despite not facing him, Catherine then spoke to the old mouse again.
" What are you still doing in here anyway? I would of thought that you'd normally be cleaning up somewhere else by now" although her expression eventually became a sly grin as she glanced at Gregory.
" Could you be slacking off? You know that your mother wouldn't be happy if she found out"

Gregory just raised a brow at Catherine's teasing tone before shaking his head a little, next to Hell's Chef; Catherine was probably the only other adult resident within the hotel that the manager had a friendly rapport with, so discussing things with either of them wasn't that difficult...there was Mummy Papa too; but to Gregory, it seemed like that man was often more interested in complaining about his ailments half the time.
" I wouldn't call this slacking off, more like trying to come up with a solution for dealing with a bad child"

Catherine went silent for a few seconds after that...then as the programme she was watching finally turned to a commercial, the lizard woman finally faced Gregory with a knowing expression on her face...she knew exactly who the aforementioned 'bad child' was.
" James is causing you problems again?"

" When is he not?" Gregory responded as he then groaned and placed a hand to his forehead.
" He's been worse than usual lately, it's starting to push me to breaking point...it's bad enough that if I do one little thing wrong, I have Mama to deal with; dealing with her and that brat is starting to make me think that death would be a better option!"

Catherine just frowned at that and tuttered in disappointment at the old mouse.
" Now Gregory...I know that James and your mother can be hard to handle, but don't you think that's a little melodramatic of you?" her expression softened slightly as she suddenly remembered something.
" Remember when I still worked in the Karte hospital? And that speech you gave me when I was thinking of leaving?"

" Refresh my memory, my dear...was that before or after you drained everyone of their blood" came Gregory's flat-sounding reply as he then rubbed at the back of his head.
" And this is nothing like that time at all"

" It's exactly the same!" Catherine snapped back.
" Gregory, I know that you don't have the easiest job in the world; but it's the destiny that you chose for yourself and although we don't always seem like it, the people of this hotel need you!"

As the lizard woman saw the startled look in Gregory's face at that moment, she then decided to quieten her voice down a bit.
" I mean...well...what I'm trying to say is that you just have to push on and deal with it, there's obviously nothing you can do about your mother...but there is something that you can do about James"

Now to put things straight, Gregory was not used to being told what to do by a woman, unless of course the woman was his mother...so it had shocked him to no end that one of his staff was suddenly talking back to him like a superior authority, normally he would of been annoyed...but for some reason, the anger failed to come.
" Wha-what can I do about him?" he asked in a slightly shakey voice.
" I've told him off, pulled his ear; that's all...and it never makes him any better"

At that point, Catherine smirked knowingly and folded her arms to add emphasis onto the fact that she was currently being someone's agony aunt.
" It's simple, if he keeps causing you trouble; just do what I do and give him a smack on the backside!"

That piece of information made Gregory's expression into looking as if someone had just dropped something heavy on his tail.
" Are you crazy?!" he exclaimed, his arms almost flailing to suit the panicked tone of his voice.
" If I was to smack him, I'd take one step closer to becoming like her" the idea was frightning to him, the last thing he ever wanted to do was become like the witch that had raised him.

" You'd only have to smack him when he does something bad" Catherine countered with a little huff thrown in.
" Besides, it's been the ultimate form of discipline for years; you got it when you were growing up, I got it when I was growing up...I bet even Chef got it when he was growing up too"

" Actually I still get it and you know that I do" Gregory said to Catherine before gulping inwardly as he just had to think of his mother and her sceptre to get all nervous.
" And I don't care if it's the ultimate form of discipline, I'm not going to do it...not now and not ever!"

This just prompted another disappointed glare from Catherine; it was like no matter what she said, he just wouldn't listen to her.
' Oh men can be so annoying sometimes!' she thought to herself before getting up from the lounge's sofa, she suddenly didn't feel like watching the rest of her programme anymore.
" That's just your problem, Gregory...you're too soft" she grumbled as she began to make her way over to the door.
" And I mean it! If you let that boy walk all over you, then of course he's going to keep causing trouble because you never do anything about it" and with that, Catherine briskly marched out of the lounge, leaving Gregory in the room all by himself.

" I'm...too soft?" Gregory rhetorically asked himself as he slowly stared at the glass cabinet that was under the TV, the glass in it reflected his rather sad-looking self-image, he looked smaller than usual where he was currently hunched over.
He remained silent for a minute or so before his once-sad expression became an annoyed one, his vunerability was giving into pride once again.
" Nonsense...it was nothing but nonsense" Gregory muttered as he slid off of the sofa and onto the floor.
" There's nothing wrong with the way that I raise my Grandson, he's the one with the problem; not me!"

Hobbling across the room and out of the door, Gregory just went in the direction of the lobby to continue with his deskwork...maybe that would calm his nerves down a little.
While travelling there however, he noticed one of the human guests were currently knocked out-cold due to slipping on a banana peel; obviously the work of James once again; Gregory would normally of stopped to perhaps see if they were alright, but in his currently annoyed frame of mind, no thought to do so crossed his mind at all.
' He'll get better, it'll take more than some little peel to stop that guest...I should know, he and his sister have caused us a lot of trouble in the past' he thought to himself as he eventually reached the lobby.

" Well then...time to get back to work" Gregory said in a slightly more happier mood as he had finally reached his desk...only to discover that it was in a mess, papers and books had been scattered all over it, other things had been rearranged into the wrong order; needless to say that it was far from looking like the neat and tidy desk it had been when Gregory had been at it before.

His eyes widened from shock as he surveyed the damage, it was going to take ages to clean all of that up and would probably end up cutting into his usual work schedule too...it was then that Gregory began to shake from rage as he tried to keep it all under control, it didn't help that he knew exactly who was behind this too...oh yes, he knew only too well who had done this, and that only made Gregory's temper worse.
" JAAAAAAAAAAAMES!!"

It was probably safe to say at this point, Gregory's partial therapy session with Catherine hadn't ended yet; and as he began to tidy up the mess on his beloved desk, Gregory made it a point that he would go and see Catherine again when he was finished.

To be continued.

Gregory, James and Catherine belong to Naomi Iwata, Milky Cartoon.