Author's Note: This story is for Verkisto and Zerectica who both gave me silly little ideas through a series of random, unrelated conversations. I also promise something more serious within the week. It is finished, I just wanted to post this one first. Reviews calm the nerves that come with posting. Please, don't make me suffer! Any and all mistakes are mine, a product of my haste.
The Scary Story of the Kidnapped Beard
It was a dark, cold morning. The only light in the dark room came from a streetlight somewhere outside, the moon and its resplendent stars covered by what he presumed to be a thick layer of fog. Hearing a few birds chirping, he hung his head, knowing the calm before the storm was coming to an end.
He did not want to move, fearful of the sharp instruments so close to his body. His arms ached from struggling, the handcuffs cutting into his wrists every time he tried to escape… which was often.
He had been walking to his bike after closing up the store, keys in hand, when a group of five masked people came up from behind, covering his face with a black cloth bag of sorts. This was precisely the reason he hated working late, fearful of kidnappers—or adult-nappers in this case—and thieves. He tried to stab one of the attackers with his key, a trick Ellie had injured him with many times when she found him unexpectedly in her house. Or room. Or walking behind her, sniffing her hair. Failing, he heard someone grunt before ripping the key ring from his finger.
"Hey! Ow!" Morgan then tried kicking, but someone easily captured his legs and bound them. He tried to talk off the attackers, offering them anything from the store, but all five of them remained quiet.
For whatever reason, the assailants chose not to put a gag in his mouth, for which he was grateful. Being claustrophobic, a gag would have made him pass out, which his captors would soon learn they preferred.
For a better duration of the long ride, he remained quiet, something Casey had taught him the hard way. But, after a while, he started blabbering again.
"Where are you taking me? Why me? I'm with the CIA, NSA, and the CoD Association of Fanatics, you know. They'll all come after you, in person or virtually!" One attacker grunted, a few others rolling their eyes as they removed their sunglasses. "Man, if this is what it's like to be a spy, unable to safely ride your Schwinn to your mother's house, I'm out. It's taco night, man!"
With that, a pair of small, cold hands in medical gloves put a strip over his mouth. At that point, all he could think of was how much of his precious, well-groomed beard would be pulled out and how much it would hurt.
All five of the masked people smiled, thinking the same thing.
From the multiple visits his captors paid simply to rattle him up, Morgan was able to discover that three of his attackers were women. Their voice changers were handy, but the baggy shirts only did so much to hide what Morgan presumed were "banging figures."
In the quiet of that dark night, he suddenly heard a loud, piercing cry, followed by a strange song sung by glass-shattering vocals. He knew his captors turned on the music to block the sound of their other prisoner's cries, all the while torturing Morgan.
The room was draped in black plastic, making it easier to clean his blood, he was sure. Hung around his face were a series of bare razors. From squirming throughout the night, Morgan had cut himself in a few places on his cheeks.
A metal cart sat just out of his reach with five more shaving razors and womanly bottles of shaving cream. He shuddered, given the creeps by the women products. If these masked-figures were going to violate his beard, he wanted them to at least do it with dignity and respect.
When the sun finally started shining through the fog, he slumped in his chair, feigning sleep. However, his plan failed when a tan, muscular man walked in with an even stronger man who shone blinding lights into Morgan's eyes, interrupting his admiration of the tan man's perfectly chiseled jaw.
It works in the movies, he pouted. If Call of Duty: Black Ops is anything like what this is going to be…
The scarier man lifted Morgan's chin, interrupting his thoughts. "The beard needs to go."
Morgan squirmed but was no competition to the man's muscles. "Please, what the duct tape did was plenty!"
The other, tanner figure shook his head. "It's time to become a man."
The remaining three walked into the room, the tallest woman staying behind as the other two joined the men and closed in on their prey—Morgan and his beard.
Morgan recognized the woman with the medical gloves, flinching at the prospect of her cold hands touching his face. "You're not Wolf-man."
Morgan's eyebrows furrowed in confusion. After thinking about what she meant, he asked, "You mean Wolverine?"
The woman's glasses were too dark for him to see her eyes rolled as she spat, "Whatever! It's time to grow up, Morgan." She moved across the room to retrieve her razor.
"I don't like the beard," the shortest woman added, razor centimeters from Morgan's face. "It's scratchy."
Closing his eyes, Morgan whimpered, "Please don't."
The most imposing man held onto Morgan's jaw as the four of them shaved bits and pieces of his beard.
"Sarah? Morgan? Hello?" The six people turned towards the door all at once. Morgan searched his memory for a flash of blonde hair in the back of the mystery van, but found none. Why does Sarah need rescuing too, he wondered, fearing that he was in more trouble than he originally expected. "Anyone seen Morgan? He's not answering his phone."
The tall woman who refrained from shaving off the beard stepped from the room, saying, "I'll take care of him," in an Australian accent.
"No! Chuck," Morgan managed to scream in a rather girly fashion before they shut him up.
Sarah took off her mask, sunglasses, and let down her hair. Looking at her attire, she took off the baggy shirt to reveal a more fitted tank top as to appear like she had a casual reason to be at his sister's.
Mustering up her best innocent expression, she moseyed into Ellie and Awesome's kitchen where Chuck was looking for Morgan's phone, which he heard playing "Secret Agent Man." Both Chuck and Sarah made a mental note to make Morgan change that at a later time.
"Hey, Sarah," Chuck greeted, worry clear in his voice. "Is Morgan around? His phone is." Sarah slightly turned back to where she vaguely heard Morgan protest. Chuck quickly picked up on her movement. "What's going on?"
Sarah wrapped her arms around his neck and pressed a kiss to his jaw, trying to distract him. He, however, detangled her arms from his neck and quickly walked to the bathroom, taking long strides. Sarah did not even bother to stop him.
From the kitchen she heard Chuck yell, "Morgan! Your beard!" After she presumed he took the masks off, she heard him exclaim in surprise, "Ellie? Alex? Devon?" Chuck, however, did not seem surprised by Casey's involvement, especially after Valentines Day with his daughter.
Morgan looked distraught when Alex's face was exposed.
They all stood back as Chuck set Morgan free, complaining, "Buddy! They broke up the Fanclub!"
Ellie took her younger brother by the lapels of his shirt. "You two had a fanclub?" Her yell woke up Baby Awesome. Sarah dutifully turned the music on and the crying quickly stopped.
Morgan, momentarily forgetting the torture he had just undergone, started explaining. "My beard is—was—something sacred. The lieutenant here is in charge of recruiting members." Everyone looked at Chuck. He shrugged, tightening his lips and raising his eyebrows, making no move to deny it. "The whole Buymore follows the Beard Fanclub on Twitter where they get daily tips on grooming and pictures of any changes made!" Morgan rubbed his jaw, frowning when he no longer felt the bristle of hairs along his fingertips. "We even had a mascot," he recovered, pumping his fist in the air with exasperation.
Casey spoke up. "Let me guess, it's a fake beard with eyes named Beardy."
Both Chuck and Morgan shot Casey looks, insinuating they thought he was stupid and ridiculous. "It was a stuffed Chewbacca, man. Real classic," Morgan replied.
Devon, deciding to disregard the previous conversation, gave Morgan a mirror and a pat on the back. "Welcome to the clean-shaven world of men, Morgan."
Morgan's face distorted. "The horror!" His eyes crossed and he slowly started falling backwards in a faint, nobody—not even Chuck—stooping to catch him.