Disclaimer: If I owned anything, you really think I would be writing on this site? Noooo- Okay, maybe I would a little, but I still don't own anything!
"Something's different about you."
Clockwork blinked. Different? He didn't recall changing anything.
"Perhaps it's just you," Clockwork dismissed and turned back to his box of gears. Some had the recognizable sheen of steel, others seemed to be made of gold; then there were ones that had spots of rust while some sparkled like gems. Picking a small silver cog, he walked over to a nearby grandfather clock and opened the face, fiddling with the components inside.
"No, I'm pretty sure that something's different," Dan said from inside his upgraded prison.
When Dan had first arrived at Clockwork's abode, in the the thermos, he had been very vocal on how displeased he was. Still, even the loudest child has to stop crying eventually, and after some monthes, he had quieted down to only the occasional gripe or rant. Seeing this as good behavior, and acknowledging that the thermos couldn't hold Dan for all of eternity, Clockwork placed him in a larger containment unit (he really wasn't sure if he would ever find a use for it when Walker had first given it to him).
Despite the larger quantity of space and the opportunity to fly around as he seen fit, Dan hated it. Really, there was no way to please him.
Clockwork reconsidered, he didn't remember changing anything about himself. Except, perhaps, that he used a different brand of laundry detergent last night that left his clothes with a faint mountain fresh odor. Surely the other ghost couldn't smell from that far away. He was almost positive that Dan didn't have super sniff abilities on his long list of powers. Other than that, there wasn't anything else-
Well. It could be that.
Clockwork rolled his eyes at Dan's distant growl of frustration. Often, he had to wonder on Dan's mental abilities. Yeah sure, he was completely insane-that was a given. Sometimes though, Clockwork wondered if Dan had been hit on the head too many times or if all that unrestrained ectoplasmic power caused his brain to fry.
"Did you get a haircut?" Dan pondered, floating in a restless and a seemingly random pattern.
"Have you even seen my hair?" Clockwork asked with a smirk. His body taking the form of a child, he had to compensate for the height difference by floating upwards in order to take out a few cogs in the time-piece.
"No," Dan admitted, "You never take off your hood. Not that I can blame you though. You either have real bad hat hair or a bald spot."
Clockwork frowned, that was the second time that week someone had commented on his appearance. Not that it really bothered him, but it made him wonder where the sudden interest came from. Besides, he prided himself in the fact that he was never bald. Even if his elderly form, he just had thinned hair.
"Maybe I'm just completely bald and my head gets cold," he quipped and turned a few gears.
Dan gave him a hardened stare, to which he ignored. Maybe that little mystery would keep Dan's manic mind preoccupied.
Finally, he snapped the silver gear in place and tested it's rotation. Satisfied, he gave some gears a short polish and put the others back in their original places. After gathering his things, he turned to find Dan looking at him with a strange expression.
"What?" Clockwork asked, thinking that Dan had finally figured it out.
"Nothing," he said shortly. Clockwork wasn't sure if Dan said that because he was just trying to politely ignore the change or if he genuinely didn't know.
Clockwork mentally shrugged and made his way towards the door, which was quicker to do now that he was taller and in his adult form.
"Your not really bald, are you?" Dan rushed.
He paused and considered just dramatically pushing back his hood, but instead resisted.
"Alot of things can happen when traveling through portals," Clockwork said, "If not made correctly, things can go very wrong. Some things mutate, and other things go missing."
Dan leaned towards the barrier of his cell.
"And sometimes things," Clockwork continued ominously, "don't come back."
Dan blinked, "Oh. Oh! Hey, does that mean that some things do come back?"
He raised an eyebrow, "Yes, I suppose they do." After all, he wasn't completely fibbing. Portals could do weird things, Dan was proof enough of this.
"Hm," Dan rubbed his goatee in an almost sage-like way, "That's good then, it would be a shame to not see those nice legs."
Clockwork was proud of the fact that he didn't blush. Choosing not to comment, he calmly walked toward the door, feeling Dan's mirthful gaze on his back.
"Although I'm going to miss that tail of yours."
Feeling uncharacteristically impatient, he decided that the last two steps out the door took too long, and all but dashed through the doorway. Despite the growing distance, he could still feel those red eyes burning on his back, yet the sensation wasn't nearly as hot as the one on his face.
So none of us have ever seen Clockwork's legs. We can imagine pretty well, but no one's seen them. Well, he gets them all the time in stories, but nobody really makes a big deal out of them like we probably would. Except maybe in The-Other-Ghostwriter's "Payback's a Bitch" where I completely fell into a heap of giggles when the author emphasized Clockwork's stalking. Loved that so much. Anyway, that story got me to thinking about a lovely little comic I read a while ago called "Grim Tales from Down Below" where a young reaper meets Clockwork and calls him a "pantsless jerk". So, this fic has a small reference to that if you squint hard enough.
Hope you liked! :D