A/N: I originally wrote this as a crack gift for moon_maiden36 on LJ (I think she's Maiden of The Moon on here). We had a little conversation about jokes the other day, and she basically ordered me to write crack, which I forgot to post to this account until now, lol. This probably isn't as funny as I think it is, but we'll see. Hope you all enjoy!
The two of them stood side by side in front of the Undertaker's shop. Ciel really had not wanted to resort to coming here, but their current case was at something of a stand-still. When Sebastian had suggested they go, Ciel had reacted quit badly and screamed at his servant something along the lines of being old enough to handle matters on his own. Sebastian had to admit that he had a point: he was seventeen now, and the number of times that the boy had been kidnapped or needed any other type of saving had drastically decreased in the past two years or so.
"What sort of information could this lunatic actually give us, Sebastian?" Ciel asked rudely, leaning heavily on his walking stick. He turned his head and gave Sebastian a doubtful look. "We've scoured the whole of England for information regarding this case. What makes you think that he—"
"As many times as he has helped us in the past," Sebastian interrupted smoothly, "one would think that the young master would have more faith in the Undertaker."
Ciel rolled his eyes. "Whatever. Open the door already."
As soon as the heavy wooden door had shut behind them, the Undertaker appeared from inside one of his coffins. "My, my, if it isn't the little earl? Have you finally come to be fitted, hm?"
As the older man let out a squeal of laughter, Ciel ignored his repetitive jibe and stated, "We've come looking for information about the recent serial murders of young children in London. We haven't been able to find any solid leads on the case so far, and her Majesty is growing more concerned by the hour. Sebastian seems to think you might be able to point us in the right direction."
"I thought the little earl might come asking about that." The Undertaker's face sobered for a moment. "Do you know that I've just finished making my smallest coffin to date? The poor dear was nothing more than a newborn."
"Which is exactly the reason why her Majesty is so concerned," Sebastian replied. "It pains her to see such innocent children being so viciously murdered. So, if there is anything that you might be able to share with us…?"
The Undertaker chuckled to himself for a moment, rising out of his seat atop what looked to be an urn and walking towards them. "I have heard certain rumors circulating these days, but…" The man laid a hand on Ciel's shoulder, bending down to finish the rest of his sentence in a whisper. "Well, I believe you know the price for rumors, don't you?"
Ciel smacked the hand, and its owner proceeded to pout. "Yes, I do know. Is the current market value still one joke? Or has the rough economy driven it up to two yet?"
Another laugh. "The little earl is so cute when he tries to be sarcastic! For this case, I think I can ignore inflation."
Ciel glanced to his side. "Pay the man, Sebastian."
The demon smiled, bowing slightly. "Of course. If the young master would be so kind as to wait outside for a moment?"
"No," he refused, crossing his arms. "In case you've forgotten, Sebastian, I'll be of legal age in a few short months. I don't see why I should be shooed out like some useless brat. It's just a joke, right?"
"Young master, I don't—"
Ciel slammed his walking stick into the floor with a solid clink! "Don't argue with me, Sebastian. You and I both know we are exceedingly short on time."
"As you wish, young master," Sebastian sighed. "The usual then, Mr. Undertaker?"
The Undertaker's only response was to chuckle again at their exchange and cover his mouth with his knuckles.
Sebastian cleared his throat and continued. "How does one make holy water?"
"How?" came the excited response.
"Boil the hell out of it."
Ciel braced himself for the raucous laughter he felt sure that would follow, but when none came, he opened his eyes and squinted up at Sebastian. "What's going on? Why didn't he laugh?"
"Well, now, that certainly wasn't up to par, was it, Mr. Butler?" the Undertaker said dejectedly. "Why not give it another try, hm?"
"All right," he replied, glancing down at Ciel before returning his gaze to the man in front of him. "Let's see... What do you call four Spaniards who've all fallen in quicksand?"
Again, no laughter came and Ciel was beginning to get angry. "What the hell do you think you're doing, Sebastian? Quit dawdling—tell him a good joke and let's be on our way!"
The Undertaker leaned forward on his elbows. "I'm quite disappointed with you today, Mr. Butler. I'll give you one more chance, shall I? Hurry now, before a fit takes your young master."
Sebastian sighed again and ran his fingers through his hair. "Young master, I think it would be best for all involved if you would just—"
"I order you to tell a proper joke, Sebastian. Right this instant."
"I understand." Turning to the Undertaker once more, Sebastian cleared his throat and, with one final glance at Ciel, spoke. "Which comes first: the chicken or the egg?"
"For the love of God, Sebastian..."
"It depends. Which of them is smoking a cigarette?"
When they left the shop an hour later, they had all of the information they could have hoped for and more. The two of them could still hear the Undertaker's laughter several blocks down the street. Neither of them spoke a word, and it wasn't until their carriage was nearly back to the mansion that Sebastian broke the silence.
"I am dreadfully sorry that the young master had to hear such filth," he apologized. "But if he will recall, I did ask him to wait outside."
Ciel scoffs lightly. "What are you apologizing for? Who do you think it was that told Bard that stupid joke in the first place?"