Hey guyssss! Thanks for reading, here's a Stutters multi-chapter fic. There aren't really any of these, so it's a treat for all you underfed fans out there. :D Please review, fave, whatevah you want. There's gonna be three pairings in this fic, though the third is barely hinted at throughout and I might take it out altogether if I don't want to deal with it. If you can guess all three, you get a pat on the back.
At thirteen, Stan Marsh realized something about himself that he wished he hadn't.
He was watching The Fifth Element with his friends on a Friday night. Kenny was raiding the fridge; Cartman and Kyle were bickering and flinging insults back and forth. Stan was pretty sure he was the only one paying attention to the movie. But he felt warmth radiating from the room, as all the tension any of the boys felt at school or with family deteriorated into the relaxed scene in his living room. He sunk deeper into his couch, a familiar sinking. Oh, the wonders of routine.
Milla Jovovich came on screen, and when Kenny returned to the living room with a jug of milk and a box of cookies in hand, his eyes opened wide while he moved his eyebrows up and down suggestively.
"Hubba hubba," he growled, sighing with relief as he collapsed next to the other boys. "What I wouldn't give for a night with her." He stared lustfully at the screen, munching cookie after cookie ferociously.
While Kenny was fixated on said female form, and Kyle and Cartman continued with their slander like a broken record, Stan considered this statement.
"Yeah, she's ok."
Kenny all but choked on his snack, though no one would have made a big deal out of it even if he had.
"What are you, a fag? She's a babe!"
"Oh. Well, she's just not my type I guess."
Cartman shoved Kyle in the face before adding to the conversation.
"What the fuck, Kenny? Stan's right, she's got fucking orange hair in this goddamn movie. She might as well be a daywalker."
"Fuck you, fatass! You're half-ginger yourself, asshole!"
"Suck my balls, Kahl."
Then Kenny kept eating, Cartman and Kyle kept fighting, and Stan went back to watching the movie.
Five hours later, at four o'clock in the morning, Stan woke up suddenly. He shot up straight in bed, blue eyes wide as the full moon and mind focused completely on the strange realization that had just hit him, like he'd gotten smacked in the face with an aluminum baseball bat.
"HOLY SHIT, I'M GAY!"
Because it wasn't just Milla Jovovich from the Fifth Element that Stan didn't find attractive. It was also Sigourney Weaver from Alien and Linda Hamilton from Terminator and all the other 'hot babes' from all the other movies he'd ever seen. And a certain schizophrenic heartthrob had been ridiculously hot in Donnie Darko. He started taking deep breaths to calm himself down, heart beating fast. He looked around his room for his teddy bear.
Stan heard movement coming from the other room, his parents turning on the light, and he froze. His eyes still betrayed a look of complete and utter desperation. He prayed to sweet Jesus that they hadn't heard the words he'd screamed.
A knock on his bedroom door. "Stan, honey, are you okay? I thought I heard shouting," came his mother's concerned voice from the hallway.
"Oh, uh, yeah. Bad dream, I guess." His clammy palms shook as his body began perspiring.
"Ok, well, you sleep well, sweetie."
When he heard her steps fading and he saw the small line of light under his door disappear, Stan wrapped himself in a fortress of blankets. Maybe if he overheated himself under all that material, he could convince himself that the thick, heavy cloth was the reason he was sweating so much. Instead of providing a haven for his thoughts, Stan began feeling smothered and suffocated. He pushed the blankets off of his face, feeling cold air fill his body as he breathed in deeply. It stung. He had stopped looking for his teddy bear, because it was totally gay to be sleeping with a childhood memento at thirteen.
There was no getting sleep that night, as a nervous feeling pervaded his mind and body. And it didn't stop; his heart sunk from his chest down lower, past his stomach and waist, and nestled itself in the corner of his little toe, before slowly dissolving. The anxiety wouldn't leave; no sign of relief appeared to alleviate his worries. Could it even be compared to the tranquil sinking he'd felt earlier this evening, face nuzzled against the soft fabric of a familiar couch? Perhaps a better term to use would be dragging; his heart being dragged slowly through his body.
Most of all, Stan was upset that one of the biggest moments in his life had to come about in such a comical fashion. Yelling in the middle of the night, expletive and all. Screw that.
But he got out of bed the next morning and started his day like normal; after all, nothing had really changed, had it? He'd been born gay, and maybe he'd been acting like it forever. A sharp pain shot through his head at the thought, like someone had come up behind him and stabbed a needle through his brain, pinpointing the lobe or whatever it was that made him keep thinking about this. No no, the needle was telling him, you can't keep thinking like this, Stan. Someone's going to notice. They have to notice. Unless you can hide it. So of course, he hid it. He hid it under porno magazines and Wendy Testaburger and trips to Raisins with friends. He hid it under football and Call of Duty and horrible action movies.
And years later, at sixteen, Stan Marsh came to the conclusion that when hiding a secret, three years is too many.
Butters Stotch didn't feel the need for revelations, not the kind Stan had experienced. He told everyone he was gay as soon as he hit sixteen, and they told him they already knew. They had been telling him he was a fag since the first day they met him. Everybody had. They treated him the same, for which he was grateful. Although they'd never treated him very well in the first place.
There was only one major difference Butters noticed afterwards; his parents. He first started noticing on a school night in early winter, and his mother had made corn bread and pork chops. They ate in silence, like they had started doing a few months ago. Butters hadn't given it much thought until that night.
As he reached a thin hand over the table, attempting to grab the salt shaker, his hand brushed his fathers'. Mr. Stotch retracted his arm, placing it quickly out of sight. He kept it there, hand clenched in a fist by his side, while dinner continued.
They wouldn't touch him. They looked at him and smiled at him, asked him how his day was and what his plans were for the week. But when he talked with them, they were stiff and uncomfortable. Most of all Butters wanted to call to them affectionately, Mom and Dad, he'd say, and they would all go out to Bennigan's. Like it should be. But they just keeping saying less and less and less.
He was frustrated. So one night at dinner, he set the table so only he could reach the salt shaker. It was pork chops again. He waited patiently for his father to ask him, please pass the salt Butters, and their hands would brush. He waited. His father always wanted salt on his pork chops.
Butters sat up straight in his high back chair. The room was decorated regally, the carpet opulent and the chandelier hanging low. The austere grandfather clock ticked loudly. The seconds passed, and the properness of the room started to overwhelm him. He felt nauseous. His father wasn't asking for the salt, and the room was looming over him, as if saying, see, look how proper, how grandiose. There's nothing gay about this at all. If we can sit here quietly with a grandfather clock, there won't be anything gay about this family at all.
"Don't you want the salt?" Butters said, louder than he'd intended. He saw his father's body tense up, and the man's eyes drifted over to the shaker where it was held in his son's tiny, feminine fingers.
"No, I'm fine, thank you for asking," Mr. Stotch replied. His face remained blank as he continued eating.
Butters felt his heart speed up, pounding against his ribcage. Suddenly he imagined a gruesome image of his father, face still emotionless, ripping apart Butters' chest and cracking his ribcage to free the heart, so Butters couldn't feel anything for anyone anymore. Not loving people at all, even that would be better than…
"You want the salt. You want it I know you do, you must," Butters begged, and he felt moisture creep into his eyes and drip onto his face, onto his plate. He stood up, salt shaker in trembling hand, and ran to his father's chair. He reached hopefully to grab the strong, manly palm sitting on the table. When Butters grasped his father's hand, he felt blissful at the contact he'd needed for so long. It didn't last.
He was on the ground, face pressed against the soft, fancy carpet, blond hair disheveled. In shock, he gingerly touched the sore spot on his cheek. He felt his eye twitch. He fixed his gaze on the floor, mind working itself to the bone trying to find an excuse as to why this had happened. Because his father still loved him.
Butters turned, face hot, to see Mr. Stotch sit back down at the grand table. Light glinted off the silverware, sparkling. As long as we sit at this table and we eat in this room, with stately walls and expensive trimmings, these kinds of exchanges don't happen in the Stotch household. There is nothing wrong with this family.
"Butters, sit down and eat your dinner."
Butters could tell his parents were pretending that nothing had changed. But he knew, from the way his mother stayed silent and shuddering, that they would remember.
His father had hit him, hard, slapped him across the cheek with his right hand. Now the man with his neatly combed, brown hair, with his shirt tucked in carefully and any harsh sentiments gone from his features before Butters could see them, wiped that same hand off on his well-ironed pants. While Butters lay, palms sweating and tears leaking out in a stream, blond, messy hair askew.
A few months later, that scene was still replaying in Butters' mind. It gave new meaning to the word 'shame'.
September was fast approaching. The crisp sound of crunching leaves under foot was only a month away. The intoxicating laziness of late summer lingered only until nightfall, when the winds turned colder and the air could chill a person to the bone. The first months of their junior year in high school would follow the familiar progression from brilliant sunshine beckoning just outside of the classroom windows to foreboding autumn weather.
Butters was hoping for things to change; he was hoping for a new group of friends who appreciated him, and classes that wouldn't leave him so gosh-darned stressed out. He was hoping for a repaired relationship with his parents. And he was hoping for a boyfriend, maybe, if he were lucky, it would be… Just the idea of someone holding him close and whispering, huskily, Butters. But he wasn't expecting much of anything. And most of all…
Stan was hoping for things to stay the same; he was hoping to stay comfortable with his best friends, and for his streak of mediocre grades to continue. He was hoping to maintain his regular teen relationship with his mom and dad. And he was hoping to get back together with Wendy Testaburger. For the sake of keeping his reputation, of course. His attempts to stop daydreaming about shirtless men in class had failed him last spring. And most of all…
Mashing together his fists…
Pinching the bridge of his nose…
"S-shucks, I just feel so—"
"God, I'm so fucking—"
"…And I just can't believe my first love won't be around, and I'm like baby, baby, baby, OOOOHH—"
"Kenny, I swear to god if you don't fucking turn that off—"
"BABY BABY BABY OOOOHHH—"
Kenny threw his head back, laughing, and cranked up the volume. Justin Bieber's sickeningly sweet voice pumped through the car, causing the old piece-of-shit vehicle to shake with the beat. Kenny said he'd gotten the automobile out of a junkyard somewhere, but Stan knew if he looked hard enough he'd find someone missing a 1999 Dodge Ram van.
"Dude, Stan, if you were really sick of my musical preferences, you wouldn't get rides with me anymore!" Kenny yelled over the music, slamming his foot on the gas. Both were pressed against their seats as the van lurched forwards.
Music at full volume, going about twenty miles over the speed limit, and Kenny hadn't once been pulled over since Stan started getting rides to school with him last winter. Kenny said it was because sometimes God felt bad for killing him off every week or so, so he'd given him total immunity against cops.
"Does it look like I have a choice? Kyle's still only got his permit and there's no way in hell Cartman would give me a ride every morning! I just have to fuckin' wait until I save up for a car!"
Stan looked around the car angrily, gesturing wildly.
"And you never clean this car, either! Five MacDonald's bags? CD's scattered all over the backseats?" Stan groaned, exasperated, and pointed to the cup holder. "An open beer bottle?"
Kenny looked over quickly and smiled like an idiot. "Oh, sweet! Forgot this was here!" He took a sip before making a disgusted face. "Blegh, warm beer."
Stan pinched the bridge of his nose and sighed, leaning back in his seat. Kenny happily patted his friend on the head, and then playfully pinched his cheek.
"There, there, my little Stanley, we're here already!"
Stan blushed slightly before furrowing his brows and pushing Kenny's hand away. He hated riding with Kenny because he played shitty music and his car smelt like a homeless person. And maybe because Kenny was such a flirt. God, could he just stop with the 'my little Stanley' bullshit?
The two got out of the car and Kenny took off running towards the school. He looked back at Stan, grinned, and said, "C'mon, I bet I can beat you there!"
Stan shook his head but started smiling. For someone who could easily trip and crack his head open on the pavement at any moment, Kenny sure threw caution to the wind. Stan didn't exactly remember any of Kenny's deaths, but the scrawny teen was always recounting the fatal stabs, bullets, and cuts he had gotten over the years. Everybody learned to accept it, even if most probably didn't believe it.
Eventually Stan and Kenny met up with Cartman and Kyle, who'd already found each other.
"Aw, fucking shit! You're taking my German class too? Doesn't that go against your Jew code or something?"
"Oh my god, Fatass, I swear that you're the stupidest person I've ever met. For the last time, not all Germans are Nazis!"
"… Well they should be!"
"Ok, break it up ladies," Kenny interrupted, forcing himself between the bickering pair. The two continued to glare at each other until Kyle noticed Stan, and his face lit up immediately. Cartman crossed his arms, rolling his eyes. The fatass nudged Kenny and made gestures that Stan assumed had something to do with him and Kyle being fags. Next to the slender, short Kenny, Cartman looked enormous. The name 'Fatass' would haunt him until he left South Park, but he'd shed his childhood fat in favor of a football player's physique (perhaps courtesy of a certain Denver Bronco?) and a height of at least six feet two. And he certainly used that to his advantage; Stan could remember multiple times when the asshole, who had several inches on all of them, had held Kyle's ushanka high over his head and watched the Jew jump for it. Needless to say, Kyle had ditched the hat sophomore year until he got too self-conscious about his hair after a few months.
"Hey dude, did you get your schedule?" Kyle asked, obviously excited. "I've got first period German," he winced, "but then second period is chemistry, third is math…" The ginger ran his hand through his hair the way he did when he was really anxious.
Stan internally rolled his eyes; after sixteen years, his best friend still had a total boner for learning. He gazed down at his own schedule and they started comparing classes.
"Oh, cool! It looks like we have second period together," Stan exclaimed, grabbing Kyle by the shoulder and pointing down to the piece of paper. He and Kyle's relationship had attained 'brother' status years ago; touching never made either uncomfortable. As gay as he was, Stan had never pictured himself in bed with his best friend. Ok, maybe once or twice, but there really was nothing there, honest. The bizarre idea of dating the guy he'd known for his entire life gave Stan a bad feeling in his mouth.
"Wait wait wait, you mean I've got chem with both of the butt buddies? Great. Thank god Kenny's there to balance out the gayness. Bring your Playboys, Ken, we're gonna need 'em."
"Shut up, fatass," Kyle spat. Since no elaborate insults about mothers or Jews followed, Stan figured that the two were done until at least lunch.
"We've all got class together? That's pretty sweet," Stan said, considering the pros of the situation. "We'll all have lab partners." Everyone knew their teacher's policy on labs—a new partner every term, no doubling up allowed.
Kyle gave him a sympathetic look and dragged him over to the side of the hallway. Kenny and Cartman continued their plan on how to get pornographic materials into chemistry without the teacher noticing; the casual comment had turned into a full-scale challenge. They made a bet that Kenny couldn't get away with it every day for a month.
"Stan," Kyle began, using the motherly tone he reserved for matters of grave importance. "Wendy's in that class, too, I heard her talking to Bebe about it. I could totally find another partner if you wanted to pair up with her."
Stan opened his mouth to protest, but then considered the offer.
"Dude, it's only for the first term. Like, a month or two. It'll be fine if things don't work out; I'll be partners with Jimmy first term, and then you and me can partner up for second term," Kyle almost pleaded. He remembered when Stan nearly bawled his eyes out the night Wendy broke up with him, and how he swore he'd get her back. But Stan didn't tell him why. I can't believe it, Stan thought. I can't believe he hasn't seen through it yet.
Stan brought his hand to his chin to think, and decided to take advantage of the opportunity.
"Yeah, ok," he said. "And, you know… Thanks, man." He placed a grateful hand on the redhead's shoulder.
He and Kyle grinned at each other before heading off to their homerooms. Since they went by last names, Marsh and McCormick headed down to Ms. Attendell's room, and Broflovski and Cartman made their way to Mr. Stein's. For two people who hated each other so much, fate threw Cartman and Kyle together an awful lot.
Stan's first period math class left him drooling on his notebook until the bell rang. He felt a sharp smack on the back of his head before he looked up irritably to confront the culprit.
"Get your ass to the next class, Marsh," Craig said. "Jesus, Kenny told me I'd have to make sure you didn't fail all your classes but this is ridiculous. It's the first fucking day." Stan watched as his view was obscured by a middle finger. Craig took his leave without another look back. As the school's resident asshole, second only to Cartman, walked out, Stan felt his eyes drop to the other boy's ass. Before he could realize what he was doing, Stan felt the familiar needle ram into the back of his brain. Rule number 3: you don't look at guy's asses in school. It's one of the most fucking obvious signs that you're gay, retard.
"No need to be so rude," Stan mumbled to himself, before grabbing his things and heading towards chemistry. The chem room was on nearly the other side of the school.
When he got there, the room was already packed with kids. He must have been almost the last person to arrive. He looked over at Kyle, who was busy asking Jimmy to be first term partners. When the redhead looked up to see Stan staring at him, he winked and gave him a thumbs-up. Stan smiled nervously, rubbing the back of his head.
"Alright students," their teacher, Mr. Hook, stated bluntly. "This is chemistry and I'm the damn teacher. I know you don't give two shits about this class, and neither do I, but if you don't do your work you'll still get an F. Just choose your partners since there's not way in hell you'll pay any attention before we do." The abrasive man sat down at his desk and started surfing the web. Stan caught Kenny inconspicuously whipping out a copy of Playboy and Cartman stifling a laugh. Stan took a deep breath.
He stood up and stiffly approached Wendy's desk. It's not like they weren't on speaking terms anymore, but the break-up had been a little awkward and Stan didn't want to make things worse. He had to be really casual, real gentle. Yeah.
"Hey, um, Wendy?" he started, before mentally slapping himself. Goddammit Stan, you should have called her Wends. It would have been way more casual and cute, she wouldn't feel uncomfortable…
Oh, just shut the fuck up already.
After internally debating himself, he noticed he had her attention. "Do you want to be partners for first term?"
He breathed a sigh of relief. Ok, he had this one in the bag. Wendy didn't have any good friends in this class, Bebe was in the fourth period chemistry class and—
"Oh, I'm sorry Stan," she said sympathetically. "I already promised Powder we'd be partners." She looked up at him apologetically and offered a small smile.
"But you don't even know Powder!" Stan gaped. Shit, wrong thing to say.
Wendy crossed her arms. "Jesus Stan, don't act like you know everything about me. Powder's my friend, ok? Don't get jealous."
"W-wha? I'm not…" Stan watched her walk briskly away, hearing her tell Powder something about a date she had tonight. His eyes did not travel down towards her ass.
"What do you mean you're partnering up with Craig?" Cartman's angry voice brought Stan out of his state of relative shock. Kenny's laugh soon followed.
"Dude, chill out! It's only for, like, a month!" Kenny slid his arm around Cartman's huge frame. "We talked about it before, you know, when you were slamming on me for being poor?" The small blond smirked.
"Oh, so this is some revenge thing, is it? Some friend you are. Let's see how you like it when I pair up with…"
Cartman looked around desperately, and then ended up grabbing the hand of the first person who strolled by. He held the enclosed hand of his new, reluctant partner up in the air triumphantly.
"… Pip!" Cartman exclaimed smugly, eyes closed. They sprang open, alarmed, once he realized he'd be spending the next month taking care of a British faggot. Along with Butters, Pip happened to be the only out kid in the whole school. Cartman quickly let go of his hand and groaned. Kenny snickered behind him.
"D-do forgive me, Eric, but I just got up to ask the teacher a small q-question, and I have already promised Butters that we would be—" Pip stuttered, but Cartman could never admit his mistakes.
"And fag it up in here every day? Not on my watch, Brit," he growled. "Butters can find his own damn partner."
Pip's face flushed crimson. His outfit hadn't changed in the least from the quirky British attire he'd worn throughout elementary school. His pin-straight blond hair still came down to his jawline. Cartman's expression changed from aggression to something along the lines of "Pip, are you for seriously blushing right now, you unbelievable fag". Kenny and Craig behind him collapsed over each other in laughter, faces red from lack of air. Cartman stood fuming while Pip shifted uncomfortably. "Good heavens," he said quietly, but his British accent still shone through. Butters looked on from the bench next to Cartman's, and he almost looked jealous.
Stan had to cover his mouth with his hand to keep from betraying a look of amusement. Cartman making an ass out of himself wasn't a rare occurrence, but it sure as hell didn't get any less hilarious every time he did.
But then he remembered what Pip said.
"I have already promised Butters that we would be—"
Which meant that a certain homosexual was without a partner. You know, a certain homosexual besides Stan.
Oh no. No no no way in hell was he going to partner up with Butters, biggest fag on the face of the earth Butters, total nerd—ok, so the nerd thing could do wonders for his grades. But the fag part wouldn't help him. In the least.
Stan scanned the room frantically for someone, anyone without a partner, before he felt a weak pull at the sleeve of his jacket.
Stan bit his lip and clenched his fists, counting to three. He took a deep breath, relaxes his muscles, and turned to face Butters. Behind the blond Stan could see Kyle giving him a helpless look. He glanced back at his friend with a similar expression before lowering his head to look at the scrawny teen.
"W-well… Shucks, Eric took my partner away, and seeing as how you don't got one…" he mashed his fists together furiously. His powder blue eyes flitted from the floor up to Stan's face repeatedly. Stan sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose before giving up.
"Sure, yeah, whatever. Let's be partners, I guess."
When he looked back at Butters, he saw that the boy's eyes were sparkling and he had brought his hands together below his chin, making him look even girlier than before. He looked so damn pleased with himself. What happened to rule number two, you fucking faggot? Don't hang around gay people.
Does it look like I have a choice?
"Alright kids," Mr. Hook yawned, "The homework for tonight's on the board. Yes, you have homework the first day of school. It's a Friday anyway, you've got the whole damn weekend. Stop complaining. I suggest you do it with your partner if possible; it's best to get into a rhythm."
Stan and Butters sat at their lab bench. Stan rested his head in his arms, face against the cold black surface of the work station. Butters sat happily, spinning back and forth on his stool. Since he was such a model student, Stan figured Butters would demand they do the homework together, and frankly? Stan didn't want to drag it out too long. He would only be delaying the inevitable.
"Tonight, seven. You come over my house at seven so we can get this fucking homework out of the way." He and Kyle were supposed to hang out that night, but he doubted Kyle would mind postponing until Saturday. "I'm assuming you don't have any plans?"
Butters, evidentially pleased with himself for getting an enthusiastic partner, shook his head vigorously. "Nope, I'm free!" He smiled like an idiot. Of course he was free. Who the hell wants to hang out with this guy? "Gee, I sure am glad we're workin' together, Stan!"
"Uh yeah. Same?" Stan forced the corners of his mouth to turn upwards. He doubted it even resembled an expression of happiness. But Butters only grinned wider.
So? Weird? Cute? I've written the next three chaps, so those'll go up whenever. Please keep reading! ~ CrisisOmegs