Leonard sat in his living room, his feet resting on the coffee table. The fifth Harry Potter book (his favorite) was resting on his lap, a cup of coffee in his hands. The sun was just rising over Pasadena, a few brilliantly bright rays of light shining into the apartment. Leonard smiled to himself as he flipped through the pages, relaxed and at peace. The lazy Sunday morning was starting on a high note.
But unfortunately, scientific law tells us what goes up, must come down.
Leonard had just taken a sip of coffee when he heard a strangled gasp pierce the air. He sighed and closed his eyes as he heard the scurrying of feet followed by three sharp raps on his bedroom door.
"Leonard. Leonard. Leonard." A high voice screeched. Leonard rubbed his temples and look sadly down at his book. Harry would have to wait.
"I'm in here, Buddy." He shouted back, putting down his coffee. There was a brief pause, followed by the trampling of feet to the living room.
Sheldon stood in the doorway, frowning deeply. His truck-patterned bathrobe was still on, and his hair was mussed and in his eyes. Leonard always thought that made him look even more like a five-year-old than he already did.
"Leonard, I have just had the most traumatizing experience." He said shortly. He raised his hand, which Leonard realized had been behind his back. He was wearing a thick rubber glove and holding a plastic stick with a claw on the end.
And on the end of the claw, was a lacy green bra.
"Leonard, how am I supposed to take a shower at 6:15 every morning if the bathroom is full of constant, filthy reminders of your coitus?"
Leonard rolled his eyes and turned back to his book.
"Well, you could just ignore them. It's not like they were in the shower."
Sheldon tensed, then glared at his roommate.
"This is my house. Not Priya's. Pirya doesn't have the privilege of leaving undergarments everywhere."
Leonard put down his coffee, exasperated.
"Look Sheldon, if they're bothering you so much, just move them."
There was an uneasy pause. Then Leonard turned to see Sheldon's eye twitching.
"You. Are suggesting. That I move. Pirya's things." He said slowly, incredulously. "Leonard, do you have any idea how disgusting-" He waved the bra in Leonard's face. "These are?"
Leonard frowned, starting to get a little offended.
"You know, it's not like she's a hooker. She takes showers everyday." He dilibretly turned and away and picked up his coffee. "Just. Deal with. It."
He cracked open his book. He couldn't help but smirk at the silence. He could practically feel Sheldon's anger. And then-
"Aye don't care if she's bin bathin' in Purell!" A thick Southern accent bit at Leonard's ears.
He whipped around. Sheldon had dropped Pirya's bra and clapped his hands over his mouth. His eyes were horrified. Leonard sat frozen for a moment.
Then he burst out laughing.
"Wha...What was that?" He giggled. Sheldon glared at him, clearing his throat.
"That was nothing you need to pay any sort of attention to, and it's not the point. We are talking about your clothes-shedding girlfriend-" His face was getting red "-and the dangers she's causin' tuh my healt- Stop it!" He said abruptly as Leonard continued to snort. "Leonard!" He yelled sharply. Leonard just waved his hand at Sheldon's fuming face.
"Lenird, yer gonna' listen tuh me!" He shouted, than covered his mouth again. "Dang it!"
Leonard had tears in his eyes now, struggling to sit up straight.
"This is hysterical."
Sheldon stamped his foot, turning red. Something wasn't right. His eyes weren't angry. The were...scared.
"Stawp laughin' now!" He commanded. Leonard took off his glasses and wiped his eyes.
"Say 'Howdy Partner'." He squeaked. Sheldon opened his mouth, but no sound came out.
It was then Leonard noticed the tears dancing in his rommate's eyes. He felt a pang of guilt, knowing he had gone too far.
Sheldon weakly made another attempt to speak, then turned on his heel, and fled back to his bedroom. He didn't stomp or glide, like he usually did. He ran, stumbling over his toes like a kid trying to escape a monster. Leonard bit his lip guiltily.
"Aw, Sheldon, come back! I was just joking!"
Sheldon ignored Leonard and slammed his bedroom door behind him. Any sign of laughter died away.
He caught a glimpse of himself in his mirror.
He saw a man thin and tall, like his father. The man had short dark hair like his father before him. And those big, blue eyes that had glared down on others the way George Cooper's had glared down on him.
And now, apparently, the voice. The tell-tale voice of a southerner, that he desperately tried to hide.
But he couldn't escape his voice.
His father's voice.
Sheldon walked towards he mirror until his nose was almost touching that of his reflection.
"You ain't ever goin' away, are ya Daddy?" He whispered to his reflection. "You ain't ever leavin' me alone."
He squeezed his eyes shut and heard plates crashing, his mother screaming. He saw Missy lying on the floor, covered in blood. His own nine year old self desprately trying to stitch up a gash in his older brother's leg in the dead of night. He heard his father's deep, dark laugh somewhere deep in the bowels of hell. A laugh that sounded just like Sheldon's...if he ever let it out.
Sheldon Cooper was a Dr.
He had escaped that place, those people.
He was going to forget about it right now. It was making him sad, and that wouldn't do.
So Dr. Sheldon Cooper cleared his throat, ridding it of any twang or drawl or accent.
And he burst into tears.