Roger slept near the sick littleun for two nights before it happened. Halfway through the third night, the entire group was woken up by coughing. They'd learned to ignore the littleun's pathetic squeaks, but this? This was like someone was coughing up the entire lining of their throat.

Once they saw it was Roger - creepy Roger, insane Roger, disturbing Roger - they were actually kind of happy. After all, when you're sick, you're weaker, right? You don't feel like doing anything, you just want to lay around.

The next morning, Roger surprised everyone by being up first. When Jack woke up, the first thing he saw was Roger leaned against a wall, nose running, bags under his eyes darker than usual. Roger was glaring at nothing, arms crossed. Jack shuddered and moved on with his day.

Roger stayed leaned up against the wall for the majority of the day. Jack managed to forget the terrifying image he'd woken up to until later that night. The sun was close to setting, and Roger was silhouetted against the sky, kicking something.

"Die! Die! Die!" there was a break for a coughing fit,bent double. He resumed the kicking. "Die! Die! Die!"

Straining his eyes, Jack was able make out a littleun curled up on the ground in front of Roger, crying. "Um, Roger?"

Roger whipped his head around. "What?" he asked. There was a mad glare in his eyes, a glare that Jack never wanted to encounter again in his life.

"Nothing. Continue," Jack said shakily. Roger nodded once and resumed the chant of 'die die die' and the kicking. He only stopped when the boy fell unconscious.

Instead of going back to his wall, Roger disappeared into the jungle, grabbing a fist-sized rock. Jack stood there for a moment and then, against his better judgement, followed.

He found Roger just inside the mess of trees, tossing the rock up and catching it, completely absorbed in his task. He didn't even look up when Jack arrived rather ungracefully, tripping over a creeper.

"Roger?" There was no answer. He tried again. "Roger?"

One of the littleuns from Ralph's group came crashing through the bushes and stared at them, wide-eyed. In one fluid movement Roger whipped the rock at him. Luckily, the kid ducked in time, scurrying away.

"Are you..."

"No."

Jack wasn't quite sure if Roger had guessed what he was going to guess, or if he'd just wanted to shut Jack up. After that episode with the rock, though, Jack didn't want to make Roger mad. Generally he tried to assert some control over the boy, just because he didn't want Roger taking over and killing everybody, but in a mood like this? No. That wasn't a good idea.

So Jack sat down, watching Roger retrieve his rock and resume the tossing and catching, tossing and catching, tossing and catching. The sun completely set. Roger continued, stopping to cough every once in a while.

"Why are you still here?"

Jack shrugged, then realized Roger wasn't facing him. "I don't know."

"Leave."

Jack rebelled against his better judgement once again, choosing to continue to sit and be silent. Roger glanced at him, eyes narrowed.

"I said leave."

"No."

Roger looked as though he was seriously considering throwing the rock at Jack, but didn't. He dropped the rock and sat down, sneezing. After a few seconds he stood up again.

"When I sit down I can't breathe right," he said. Jack nodded.

Roger laid down on the ground a few minutes later, falling asleep almost immediately.

Jack stayed where he was, watching over the sleeping sadist. He didn't know why he stayed, or why it was so easy to stay awake when he was simply watching what he supposed was Roger's direction, especially after the clouds covered the moon and he was dropped into darkness.

Needless to say, Roger was a bit disturbed - well, more disturbed then he already was - when he woke up.

But that was okay.


More Roger and Jack. :D Although this one's a bit more shippy, it's not romance. No. They've got a little bromance. In my head. And kind of in the book. But mostly it's just in my head. It's not like Ralph/Simon.

But enough of my rambling. x33

/will probably start a random multi-chaptered LOTF fic sometime soon.