A/N: Let's keep it goin' =)
I'm greeted by the familiar chipped white painting on Kenny's front door, marred with dents and discoloring all along its surface. I glance to the driveway, seeing that his dad's pick-up is missing from its usual spot. I grab the knob and slowly push it open, sticking my head inside to see Kenny leaning back on the couch staring at the twelve inch TV atop it's red grocery crate.
"Hey," he says, his eyes never leaving the screen.
"Hey, Dude," I reply quietly, shutting the door behind me and walking over towards him. I sit down beside him, looking over to the TV and raising my brow. "Uh, Ken?"
"You're uh...you're watching static."
He looks at me and shrugs, "Yeah. Dulls the mind. Makes ya just kinda...blank, ya know?"
I shake my head, "No, I don't."
He smirks, grabbing the remote and flicking off the snow of the TV. "So. Sounded like you had somethin' on your mind earlier, huh?" he looks at me with his blue eyes.
I look back and shrug. "I had a weird-ass dream, Dude."
"What, you actually get some action?" he leans back and sniggers.
"Fuck you," I frown.
"Right here? Jeez Kyle, I thought you'd at least make me buy you dinner first."
"Oh shut up," I can't resist smiling as I hit his arm. "You couldn't afford me anyways."
"That a poor crack or are we just talkin' how good you are?"
"You interpret it however the fuck you want," I lean back with him and sigh.
His smile falls a bit and he watches me, "Seriously, though, what happened? I mean, you sounded fucking freaked."
I blink, "I did?"
"Dude, you were like, really worried sounding," he frowns, sitting up and staring at me. "Just what the hell did you dream about?"
I look at him and then down at the floor, creasing my brow. I didn't think it was that bad. "Uh, just...death I guess," I shrug.
He watches me carefully with a hint of skepticism lining his face. "You're afraid of death?"
"Not really..." I trail off, having to look away from him. All I can see is the blood on him...this thing hit me harder than I thought.
"Well take it from me," he starts, "Death is nothing to be afraid of." He pauses a moment, "Besides, I wouldn't think that someone like you would be scared of something like that."
I look back at him and cock my head, "How do you figure?"
"Well like, you're smart," he blinks. "You know that it's nothin' more than sleepin'."
"What about the Hell thing?" I frown.
"Yeah, but, it's not livin' either..." he looks up thoughtfully. "It's hard to explain."
"Then don't," I wave it away. I don't need to hear about it after what I saw. I just need something to clear my head. "I'll find out someday."
"True," he nods, leaning back and staring up at the ceiling.
I love that about mine and Ken's relationship. He doesn't always jump in to comfort me, he's quite blunt and to the point on his feelings. He usually makes me feel better just by being himself instead of developing that different persona that Stan seems to take. It's nice and refreshing to hear things from the perspective of someone so different than the others and so like myself.
"So what now?" he asks quietly.
"I dunno," I shrug. "What are you up to doing?"
He looks over at me and smirks, "You."
"Tough shit," I smirk back. "What are you up to doing that doesn't involve your dick?"
He looks up in thought before settling his eyes back on me, "There's always toys," he grins.
I roll my eyes and shake my head. "Something's wrong with you."
"Eh, I think I'm perfectly normal," he shrugs. "Everyone thinks like that, I'm just the only person around here with the balls to say it."
"No, you're just the only person lacking tact," I raise my brow.
"Same thing," he smiles. "Well, you could treat me to some pizza," he states.
"At nine in the morning?" I blink.
"I'm always hungry," he licks his lips. He leans in closer to me and I start leaning back away from him. "Either you or the pie. You make the call," he growls.
"Alright, Shaky's it is," I roll my eyes, pushing him up and away from me. He chuckles and rubs his hands together.
"Excellent. You're always the easiest to mooch off of."
"I'm the only one ever around," I scoff.
"This is true," he nods. We shoot our heads up as we hear the tell-tale sputtering of the McCormick's pick-up truck and Kenny groans. "Shit. It's Pop. C'mon, we'll go out back," he grabs my arm and we start getting off the couch before the front door slams open. Stuart McCormick stands in the doorway, licking his chapped lips and glaring at the both of us with glimmering, bloodshot eyes.
"What're you doing here?" he sneers at me.
"I...I'm visiting," I gulp, averting my eyes down to my worn shoes. To be honest, Stuart scares the ever-loving crap out of me. Kenny's grip tightens around my arm.
"What fer?" he growls. "That piece of shit ain't worth your precious million-dollar time."
Kenny sighs softly next to me. "Come on," he mutters, pulling me away.
"Now you wait just a moment there," Stuart calls. I hear his heavy boots coming up to us and gulp again before slowly raising my eyes back into his dark brown iris'. He stares down on me and narrows his eyes. "Why are you really here?"
Kenny pulls me away from him and growls under his breath. "He's my best friend, Pop, you know this. He has every right to be over here."
"Uh huh. Well how 'bout you two meet over at his mansion sometime once in awhile, huh?" he shouts. I cringe slightly but Kenny holds steady; unfortunately I know that's because he's used to this kind of treatment.
"It ain't a mansion," Ken mocks. "It's a house. I would explain to you what one is like, but since you been livin' in tin cans all your life, you wouldn't understand!" Stuart growls ferociously, grabbing Ken's collar and pulling him away from me.
"What'd you say you little shithead?" he demands.
"I said you're poor!"
Stuart's fist rears back and flies into Ken's cheek, sending him sprawling backwards onto the dirty carpeting. I bite my lip and start to move over by him. I've seen these two fight before, it gets bad if someone doesn't intervene. A large hand grabs my forearm and I look to see Stuart staring at me evilly.
"Mr. McCormick, let go!" I plead, trying to pry my arm out of his grasp. He smirks, pulling me in closer to himself and breathing hotly into my face.
"He'll come for you," he whispers. My heart stops for a moment and I look into his eyes, seeing a flash of deep red glint passing through before I'm suddenly ripped away from him. Kenny grabs my shoulders and starts leading me past his father out the front door.
"Ya don't fuckin' threaten the company!" Ken yells behind us before he shoves me outside and slams the door shut behind him, staring at it and breathing angrily. I shake lightly, Stuart's words circling around my mind furiously before I look up at the fuming blonde.
"K-Ken?" I stammer out.
He takes a heavy breath before looking at me, his cheek already beginning to swell. I stare at him with a sinking heart before sighing, grabbing his arm and pulling him off the front step. "Come on," I motion. "Let's get that pizza, hm?" He breaks into a grateful smile, hopping up beside me and swinging his arm over my shoulders, holding onto me tightly. He's tense and it makes me bite my lip angrily. "Are...are you okay?" I manage to ask.
"Yeah. I'm more concerned about you though."
He looks over at me and I return it. "Well...I mean...you come over to my place...of all places looking for help from a dream. Then my dad grabs you like that," he tenses more and grits his teeth. "He shouldn't fucking grab anyone like that but especially not you. He wouldn't do that to fucking Craig or Stan."
"Craig and Stan are also twice my size," I remind him. "They're a bit more able to beat him back if they see fit than I am."
He looks down at me and smirks. "I s'pose so. But still...no more...sleeping over at my place, okay?"
"I thought I was supposed to tonight," I raise my brow.
"Yeah, but he could hurt ya. I don't need that on my conscious."
"Dude, I'm fine," I roll my eyes. "He'll probably be passed out by then anyways," I add quietly.
Kenny bites his lip and nods silently. "Fine. But you're sleeping on the far side of the door, alright?"
I snicker up at him. "Sure, big bro," I smirk.
"Don't call me that," he sticks his tongue out.
"Well because then what I'm gonna do to you counts as incest and that just isn't my thing."
I groan and push myself away from him, crossing my arms in a huff. "I hate you, Ken."
"Lies," he chuckles softly. We fall into a comfortable silence and I take a deep breath, closing my eyes and thinking about Stuart again.
He'll come for you.
That's just too weird for my tastes. Who the fuck is this He anyways? And why would He be after me? I'm just a kid in a town in the middle of fucking nowhere.
"Whatcha thinkin' about?" Ken interrupts my thoughts.
"Nothin," I mumble.
"And once again I say: Lies," he scoffs. "It that dream of yours again?"
I creak my eyes open and nod quietly. "Yeah," I whisper.
"Dude, let me tell you something," he starts, looking down on me with a raised brow. "I stopped paying attention to my dreams years ago. You know why? Because they're just your imagination bein' overactive, okay?"
"Sometimes they can...tell the future, ya know?" I look at him while biting my lip.
"Tell me what the fuck was in this dream." he demands.
I gulp and look down at the ground, watching my shoes cross over the cement of the sidewalk. "It was...you and Stan and Craig. Something...killed you and...and took out your organs and stuff. And we were in this dark room and you were all around me and then you came to life again and then you all started attac-"
"Slow down, Ky!" he says, wrapping his arm around me again. "You're ramblin'. Now just tell me nice and slow. Me, Craig, and Stan. We were dead. We came back to life...then what?"
I take a deep breath, shaking badly on the exhale. "Then...then you grabbed me. A-and started telling me that whatever killed you...was coming for me, too."
He's silent for a few moments as I start nervously twiddling my thumbs. "That it?" he says.
"I...I know it sounds stupid...but it really fucking freaked me out," I admit, tucking a stray curl behind my ear and sighing. "It...it felt so real, ya know? I hurt when I got out of bed, I could fucking feel needles in my skin. I've never had a dream like that."
"Well...I ain't dead," he clarifies. "Craig and Stan ain't either. Too much sugar maybe?"
"Ken, I don't eat sugar," I remind him tiredly. "I...I just have this feeling...ya know?"
"What kind of feeling?" he asks quietly.
"I feel like something's gonna happen," I tell him. "I feel like that dream was trying to tell me something, like, warning me to be prepared."
"Maybe it's just telling ya that like..." he looks up in contemplation, "maybe...you're gonna fail a test or somethin'."
I sigh, "I...I really hope so." I shut my eyes and bite my lip again. I'm not convinced. I just wanna know what the hell this feeling is: My stomach is knotted and uneasy, my throat is burning with the need to throw up...I'm scared out of my mind right now...and just of a fucking stupid dream. Ken's right; it's just a result of overactive imagination. Some inner creativity that just needed unleashed and chose the form of entrails swimming under my feet.
That's all I can hope for at this point.
"Uh...Kyle?..." he slows us down, holding me against him tightly.
"Wha-" I open my eyes, finding a mass of black birds staring at us with beady red eyes.
"Dude...please tell me you have fucking bird seed in your pocket or something..." he slowly starts backing the both of us up.
I don't even dignify that with a response, my eyes worriedly scanning through the crows. They're totally focused on us...just an occasional flitter of the wings are the only indication these creepy things are actually alive.
"Ken...those are crows..." I say nervously.
"Are...are they predators or something?"
One of the crows at the front bends its head down, its eyes shining ruby in the light of the sun. "These ones might be," I murmur, grabbing at his arm. We turn around and start quickly trotting away before we hear a mess of caws from behind us and slowly turn, finding them starting to launch off the ground and take flight towards us. We both let out panicked yelps.
"Come on, Kyle, move it!" Kenny shouts, pulling me back around and starting to sprint away, pulling me closely behind him. I run along with him, keeping my head turned around and watching the birds as they pick up speed behind us. one swoops down and narrowly misses my head and I shout in surprise.
"What the fuck are these things on?" I screech as more make death dives towards the both of us.
"I dunno, but I wouldn't mind having some for home," he replies, trying to get us both to pick up enough speed to escape the flying attackers. I feel a sharp pain exploding throughout my back and groan, turning to see a black bird falling off of me with a blood-stained beak.
A group of them catch up to the both of us and start pecking away. We use our free arms to shield our eyes as we race down the paved walkway, screaming at the stupid flying monsters to get the hell away from us. We break apart our hands, waving our arms wildly in the air as we try to beat away the pests. I catch one and it bites down onto my arm, it's beak tearing through the fabric of my jacket swiftly and digging down into my skin. I shake around, but the sucker's clamping on tightly. I scream in panic, coming to a stop and trying to swat at more of them with their clingy buddy to beat them against each other.
"Kyle, keep moving!" Kenny yells. I look up slightly and see his house once more as he speeds past it, looking back at me with worried, hidden eyes. I uncover my eyes and grab onto the biting bird. It squawks and its jaws come apart. I throw it towards its friends, mildly disappointed the fucker catches itself in midair and didn't just flop onto the ground. The crows keep swarming me, pecking away at my jacket and what they've exposed of my skin before I take off through the mess of them, trying to catch up to Kenny in a hurry.
"What the fuck did we do?" I shout towards him.
"Maybe there's a bird god we forgot to pray to!" he shouts back, yelping as they continue to bombard him. Even in my panicked state, I can't help but roll my eyes at the guy. One of the birds dives down and jabs at my head, just barely missing my temple. My eyes water from the sharp stinging now crashing around my skull. I look back up under my sleeve and finding we're nearing my house. I bite my lip, grounding my sneakers against the concrete before taking off more furiously than before, running up beside Kenny.
"Dude, my house!" I shout.
"Come on," he yells back, grabbing my arm once more and starting to lead me off faster. We start approaching my house, the sounds of the caws from the ravens almost deafening. My body rings in stinging sensations and I groan softly as they throb in pain with my movements.
"Guys!" a voice calls out. We look up to see my brother standing at the end of our walkway holding the paper and looking at us with a raised brow.
"IKE GET IN THE HOUSE!" I scream, trying to beat off more of the birds. He just stares and Kenny growls, pushing me up my lawn and towards my front door. He rushes over and grabs Ike, hefting him up before running and meeting me at the entrance. I shove it open and we clamber inside before I slam the door shut behind us. I lean against it, taking large gulps of breath while Kenny puts Ike down and does the same.
"Boys, just what's gotten into yo-" my mom comes into the room, staring at us with wide eyes.
"Dude, they were running around like fucking retards," Ike relays.
"DID YOU NOT SEE THE BIRDS?" I shout at him.
He looks back at me and cocks his head a bit. "What."
"Th-the birds," Ken repeats, gulping. "Like, a million of them chasing us down? They wanted lunch and apparently our souls were on the goddamn menu!"
"Kenneth, you watch how you speak in this house," Mom lectures, coming over to us. She grabs my arm and looks over me carefully. "Kyle, why are you so cut up?" she asks.
"Ma, it was the birds!" I insist. "These crows came out of nowhere and me and Ken-"
"Kyle, I don't need your excuses," she huffs.
"Yeah, everyone knows you two just had some rough lovin'," Ike snickers, walking over and plopping down on the couch.
"Trust me, I'd look a lot happier were that the case," Kenny mutters.
"Shut up, McCormick," I hiss. "Ma, trust me, it was a bunch of crows!"
She rolls her eyes and clucks her tongue. "Look, Kyle. I don't care if it was crows, cows, or Kenny. But you ruined a perfectly good jacket," she waves my arm for display. "And you're both bleeding all over. Now you two go upstairs and clean up, do you understand?"
"I..." I start to protest but see the hardened look in her brown eyes and just opt for sighing dramatically. "C'mon, Ken," I mumble, treading up my stairs with him in tow. The sound of the news appears from the TV as we make our way to my bedroom, my head racing in a panic.
We enter my bedroom and shut the door and stare at each other. "Ike didn't see the birds," I say softly.
"How the fuck couldn't he?" Kenny snarls, ripping off his t-shirt and throwing it across the room. I do the same to my jacket and shirt and we examine our puncture wounds. "Fucking bastards only took up half the goddamn sky."
"I...I don't understand this," I bite my lip. "The wounds are real...so those birds had to have been real, too, right?"
"Maybe we were lost in the throes of passion," Kenny shrugs. I glare at him and he grins cheekily. I sigh, rubbing over where the crow had a hold of my arm.
"I dunno, Dude. Something weirds going on. Crows are an omen."
"Like that movie?"
"Sure, Ken, what the hell not," I roll my eyes. "We nearly got our skin ripped apart by fucking possessed birds, so let's compare it to a fucking 80s horror film."
He's silent for a moment before he shrugs, "They remade it in 2006."
I groan and bring my hand up to run my fingers through my hair. I hit a lump atop my head and quirk my brow, rubbing over the area a few times. I wrap my fingers around something rather large feeling and pull it out of my tangled locks. I finally break it free with a hiss and bring it around my front to investigate. I find a mouse, torn apart and caked in blood in my hand and nearly vomit. I let out a rather girlish yelp and fling the dead rodent onto my floor. Kenny stares down at it and clears his throat squeamishly.
"Well lookie there, Ky. One of our birdie friends gave you a pal to remember him by." We gaze at the mutilated mouse before looking at each other with worried expressions.
Ike couldn't see the birds...how could he not? Maybe Ken and I are the only ones around here able to open our eyes. But I'd sure as hell love to close mine and keep 'em that way.
I think my imaginations gone into overdrive.
A/N: reason this took so long is I was considering not continuing it
still thinkin' about it, actually. But as of now, yay updates and ravens : D
thanks for R&Ring!