All those labels are blank. How do we really know they're pain pills?
I don't own Left 4 Dead, Valve.
Every day, the group of four would wrestle their way through the infected's world, trying to survive long enough to get to New Orleans. Every day, at least one of them would suffer injuries, and, if a first-aid kit were not on hand, they'd use the next best thing: pain pills.
They'd first found the pain pills in a drawer in the first hotel. The drawer was labeled 'Pain Pills for Temporary Relief'. Three bottles of the same pills lay in the bottom of the drawer. Securing one for the lady, the group decided the youngest of the group should get the other two bottles. In the end, Rochelle, Ellis, and Nick all held a bottle of pain pills.
When they took the pills, of course, like all pain pills, they seem to relieve the pain instantly, though temporarily.
It wasn't until they had stolen Jimmy Gibbs, Jr.'s car and driven off to New Orleans that things started getting strange.
Ellis had both hands firmly gripping the wheel, running into every other zombie that crossed near his path. For the most part, he was calmly driving to New Orleans. Nick sat at Ellis' right, and Coach and Rochelle had squeezed into the back seats. The car was silent. For a while Ellis had been playing a one-sided game of I-Spy with Nick before Coach and Rochelle had joined in. Nick then threw a fit at the pointlessness of the game, as there was nothing to 'spy'. The car went silent, and had been for almost an hour. Because of this, everyone noticed when a sudden tapping arose. Rochelle furrowed her brow, trying to look out the window to see if any parts of the car were dragging on the road. Coach looked to see if anything was vibrating on the dashboard. Nick looked over to where the noise was coming from, and the three of them at once noticed it was Ellis, tapping the driver's wheel with his hand, almost nervously. They exchanged worried, if not confused, looks.
"… Ellis, sweetie?" Rochelle said after a while. "Are you alright?" He didn't answer.
"Overalls!" Nick barked, louder. Ellis jumped in the slightest.
"Yeah?" He asked.
"Did you hear us?" Rochelle asked. He paused before answering, looking confused.
"No, beg yer pardon. Did ya say anything?" He asked politely, changing lanes to avoid a crashed and abandoned van.
"Um, yes. We asked if you were okay." She repeated herself.
"Why ever would I not be?" He replied, turning to face her slightly. It wasn't like he had to worry too much about oncoming traffic.
"You seem a bit jumpy." Nick commented, giving the boy a sideways glance.
"I don't think I am." He said. Rochelle looked at Coach.
"Boy, you're tappin' that wheel like you're goin' through withdrawal. It ain't nothin'." The older man leaned back against his seat, crossing his arms.
"Ah, well… I guess I'm a bit jumpy. For some reason, I keep wanting to… well…" He trailed off, tapping his hand again.
"What? You keep wanting to what?" Nick pressed.
"Um… I, uh, want to move around. I've been squeezed into this car for a while now, and I gotta say my legs are sore." He said, keeping his eyes on the road, sometimes having them glance down. Nick huffed.
"Well, all right. If you want to take a break, we can pull over and stretch. I am getting a bit sore." Rochelle admitted, stretching her leg out.
"Yeah… I suppose I just-" He stopped. Rochelle frowned. "I just…" He sounded exhausted. Suddenly Ellis groaned and his hands slipped from the wheel and his head hit the window, resting on the door handle.
"Ellis!" The car jerked to the side, and Nick fumbled to grab the wheel in a panic. It lurched off the road and into the forest alongside it, causing Nick to jump over to Ellis' seat and slam on the breaks. All of them were thrown forward, Nick banging his head on the driver's wheel and Rochelle and Coach slamming into the seats in front of them.
When everything had calmed down, Nick reached over Ellis' unconscious body and wrenched the door open. He crawled over the younger boy and dragged him out of the car. "What the hell just happened?" Coach demanded.
"Hell if I know!" Nick snapped, getting on his knees and propping the boy up. "He just passed out!" Rochelle stumbled from the car, a hand on her head.
"Oh, my head…" She moaned. She got on her knee in front of Ellis. Patting his cheek gently, she said, "Ellis? Are you alright, honey?" The tone of worry was obvious in her voice. There was silence, and just in case, she put her two fingers on his neck.
"Don't joke around!" Nick barked, and she yanked back her hand as though burned.
"Just in case! You never know, Nick!" She yelled. "Ugh. I need some pills." With that, she pulled out pills from her pack and popped one her mouth. Afterwards, she looked towards Ellis again and put her hand on his cheek.
"I hope he's alright." Coach said, coming to stand behind Rochelle. Just then, a groan sounded from the unconscious boy.
"Oh, man…" He moaned. Rochelle moved her hand and backed up slightly.
"Ellis?" She asked. He slowly opened his eyes.
"Oh man… I am so dizzy, man…" His eyes were dazed as he looked up towards Rochelle.
"At least you're awake now!" She said with relief. Ellis stopped a moment, and, as though realizing something, craned his neck to see who was supporting him. It wasn't until then that he realized that he was leaning on Nick's chest. Ellis' eyes flew open suddenly and he jumped up with a squeak that very much didn't fit him.
"Holy piss, man!" He squealed in shock, stumbling to a standing position a far distance away. "W-w-why are you holding me like some lady?" He asked. Nick deadpanned.
"Seriously? You were unconscious. What was I supposed to do? Have you sprawled out on the ground like roadkill?" Nick was puzzled when he saw Ellis' red face.
"Holy shit, man. My head's all funny. I feel like I ain't supposed to be this way." With that, Ellis folding one hand across his chest and the other one rested on his cheek, as though he were hiding something. All of them stared with open mouths as the boy stood like a teenage girl, head swinging back and forth. "I feel like… Ya know. Like someone's hit me upside the head or something." He said with a small squeak at the end. "And damn! Why does my voice keep cracking?" He said with a huff. The others gaped.
That was the first oddity that occurred. As quickly as it happened, it stopped, and Ellis still had no idea why he acted like he did.
"I felt like my mind was being controlled, man. No man should ever have to feel that way. Oh god- I'm not infected, am I?" He yelled. Of course he wasn't, as he'd been bitten before, and they all knew he was immune. In addition, the changing into a zombie wouldn't take that long, and the symptoms didn't include voice cracks.
It wasn't until Ellis got dragged away by a Smoker while they weren't looking during a horde attack days later. It looped around his neck, rendering him silent and threatening to snap it in half. Once the fighting was done, Coach heard the cough and yell of the Smoker. "Tongue thing here!" He called.
"Where?" Nick called back, punching an infected man in the gut and shooting him in the crown of the head.
"I don't know."
"Where's Ellis?" Rochelle asked. There was a brief silence.
They tore off towards the sound of the Smoker.
"Why the hell is it always him that gets targeting by everything?" Nick cursed, skidding around a corner and seeing a near unconscious Ellis trying to rip the tongue off him. Nick was about to yank Ellis when he saw the tongue looped around his neck, and he was grateful he stopped himself. If he had done so, Ellis' neck would have cracked. Instead, he shot the bondage and wrestled the Smoker away from the boy. The Smoker grabbed at his arm, dragging his claws through the man's bicep. Nick winced and punched the infected, shooting it once. Smoke instantly blasted everywhere, making him cough and double over. "You alright?" He asked once it cleared. Ellis was panting, rubbing his bright red, and now purple, neck. Nonetheless, he nodded once, coughing.
"Here." Coach said, handing Ellis his pain pills. Ellis thanked him with a nod and took one, wordlessly handing the bottle to Nick after seeing the older man's wound. Nick popped one in his mouth.
Later, Ellis found himself stumbling around, mumbling every word that came to mind.
"Safe room is red but purple and cats are the windowpane is floor dirty cold?" He ended his statement with a slightly rise in tone as though it were a question. Rochelle stared at him with a slightly opened mouth and a furrowed brow. Coach's expression matched hers, but instead of gaping at Ellis, he was gaping at the other member of the foursome.
Nick was sitting on a chair that he had draped a blanket over, saying how the chair was too muddy to sit on. "I hate it when my suit gets dirty, you know? And I just… Man, I haven't seen any hot guys in a while. I'm kind of lonely. This world's so dirty and cold! And I feel like I'm a bit misunderstood, but they're all zombies. No one's listening, because they're all undead freaks."
The symptoms wore off after a few hours. Throughout, they mostly continued their random statements, stumbling, and occasionally they would fall to the floor, only to get back up and complain about head or stomachaches. Once or twice Ellis was caught staring at Nick, red in the face.
"Oh, man… I feel like I spent the whole day at a salon." Ellis said. He was sitting on a chair, his head hanging off the back of it. Nick was sitting at Ellis' side, leaning forward with his head in his hands as he rubbed his temples with his fingers. Together, they were the picture of stress.
"I feel like someone dry fed me lip gloss." He grunted. Ellis picked up his head and looked at the man.
"How do you get dry fed lip gloss? It's a liquid. That's oxymoronic." Nick looked at Ellis, expressionless.
"Ha! I get it, 'cause it has the word moron in it."
"So, what was that all about?" Rochelle asked.
"Hell if I know." Nick said.
"I feel terrible, though." Ellis added.
"You guys want some pain pills? That might make the headache go away."
"I thought you're not supposed to have pain pills within like, eight hours of each other or something." Ellis said.
"I don't know, it depends on the pill." Rochelle said.
"What does the label say?" Nick asked.
"It doesn't have one." At that, Nick's head sprung up.
"Wait a minute," He ordered, though tentatively, as though he were still piecing something together. "You've been giving us pain pills without a label?" He confirmed.
"Well, kind of. The label's been worn to the point where it's blank. But it was in the cabinet that said 'pain pills'." She said. Nick stopped and stared for a moment, obviously thinking hard.
"You ever thought to wonder why someone who passed by wouldn't stock up on all the pills? Why would they leave just three? Obviously there were more to begin with." Nick sat up, frowning. Rochelle shrugged. Without answering his own question, Nick took the bottle from her. "Ten points, Ellis." He said over his shoulder,
"Um…" The boy started. "Because they weren't all pain pills?"
"Then what were they?" Rochelle asked, confused. Nick peeled off the blank label and turned towards the light, hoping to see some haze of the ink left behind in the label. Sure enough, the words were easy to see in the light. Upon reading the label, Nick deadpanned and dropped the paper with a groan. As it sank to the floor, the others studied the almost blank label, and found, if they tried, they too could read the label. They all gaped at what it read:
I know taking women's 1-a-day won't actually make you act like a girl, but in my world, it makes your female hormone levels rise, and for men, that makes you more jittery, mood-swingy, and makes you think more about love (guys). Side effects include voice cracks, dizziness, an almost drunken way of speech, or fainting. Do not take before driving! It may make you get distracted by the sexy man sitting next to you. Or you could pass out.
Nick and Ellis aren't really gay- it's just the pills. Or is it?
This isn't really Nick/Ellis, but if you guys want you can take it that way. XD
XD This is just a silly little thing. Thanks for reading!