Pinky knew as soon as it happened. Could smell it on him.

He was sick. And not the kind of sick that got better with juice and chicken noodle soup for the soul and plenty of bed rest. This was the sick that never got better and only got worse.

At first he was sad.

Then he was mad. This wasn't fair! He had so much to do! So much to live for! They hadn't even taken over the world yet! There was no castle, no cheering crowd, no smile on Brain's face.

He wasn't ready to say goodbye.

So he pretended it wasn't there. He ignored the way his scent changed, day after day. Subtle, hardly detectable. The smaller mouse hadn't even noticed yet. Which was a good thing, he decided, because he didn't want his husband to be scared. It was bad enough one of them was so scared.

In the middle of the night he woke himself up with his own sobs, loneliness heavy in his heart, wrapped up tight in the kindest hold in the world with sweet nothings whispered against his ear to soothe him back to sleep. "It's only a bad dream, dear, it can't hurt you." But it could and it would. Because his worst nightmare was coming true. They wouldn't get to be together.

He considered telling him. Maybe there was something he could do? But every time he opened his mouth to say the words, they dried up on his tongue and vanished into the air like dust on a wind chime. He couldn't tell him. Not if it meant wiping away that fond annoyance, the determination, the normalness of it all.

He just wanted everything to be normal.

After the mad and the ignoring came the sad again.

It was hard not to notice this sad. It seeped in all the holes in their cage and crept in all the shadows. Moved the hands of the clock, ticking the second hand tick-by-tock, mocking him. You don't have much time. You don't have much time.

So he hugged him extra lots, extra tight. Because he wouldn't get to hug him soon. Not with the decay that filled his nostrils whenever he wrapped him up in his arms, focusing on the angry squirming so he wouldn't have to focus on the smell.

So he kissed him extra lots, extra deep. Because he wouldn't get to kiss him soon. And each one left them breathless, panting, more in love than ever before. And he let him crawl on top of him, perch on his belly, let him have the control because he wouldn't have it for much longer. He let him in, in, in, deeper, deeper, please.

Maybe if he went in deep enough he'd stay

He begged and pleaded for love things, was denied more often than not, but the suspicion was rising. So was the smell. Things weren't working the way they were supposed to inside and there wasn't anything that could fix them. Even if his smarty husband knew about them, he knew he couldn't fix them.

Best to keep him happy for as long as possible. For the short time they had left, he needed to be happy. He was getting tired from carrying the weight on his shoulders, but he'd take the burden if it meant making things easier for his lover. Things wouldn't be easy for long.

He just hoped he'd never notice the smell.

Being so out of touch with his instincts helped, of that he was certain. He didn't understand the importance of scent unless it was love things and then the scent of their selves was so strong, even he couldn't detect the sickness brewing any longer.

He moved the furniture around and around and around. His husband didn't understand, didn't try to, but it was his way of coping. Nesting. He needed to move everything, needed to get used to a cage not theirs only his. He hoped it would make it hurt less.

It didn't.

When the scent shifted, practically vanishing, he knew.

He ignored the smaller mouse's half-hearted squirms, attempts to push him away, "later, Pinky, the same thing we do every night, Pinky." He just held him tightly and sat behind him all through the evening, arms wrapped around his waist and head buried in between his shoulder blades. He didn't want to say goodbye.

And he watched as the plans were drawn, but none happened that night.

And when he was certain his husband, lover, everything was in the deepest of deep sleeps, he kissed his eyelids, his temples, his nose, his chin, his lips. Kissed with the gentlest of caresses, feather light and soft like babies.

And he prided himself in breaking it before the tears splashed his fur. Curled around him on the bed to watch him, watch him for hours, watch him slumber, watch him dream. In his dreams he could have the world, in his dreams they could be together, and for that he was glad. There would always be dreams.

And when dark of night became misty and gray, he silently crept from his bed, from his husband. His instincts urged him to. It was only right. Better he spared waking in their bed alone and not.

And he found the darkest corner of the lab, safe and small and warm. But not safe because his husband was not there. But not small because there was always space for two. But not warm because nothing was as warm as the love of his life. Of his life.

It would do.

The smell was back, but it wasn't sickness anymore. Glazed over eyes watched the gray walls paint themselves with sunrise from his dark, secret spot. It's beautiful, Brain, can we watch all the sunrises together?

What're we gonna do tomorrow night, Brain?

Can I love you, Brain?

Brain, I'm scared.

Brain, I don't want to go.

Brain, Brain, Brain.

His last thought, as his eyes slipped shut and a rattle trembled in his bones, was that he hoped Brain wouldn't be too sad when the scientists found him.

He'd worked too hard to keep him happy.

Don't ask. It's super depressing. It still makes me cry.

I've discovered that I'm more likely to write depressing things when I have tests to study for. Hmm... must investigate further.

This was kind of experimental, just because I wanted to make things blur together and blend and confuse people just a bit. I didn't want it to be completely clear through Pinky's point of view as to who was dying. Until further into the story of course, so I hope I accomplished that.

After this, Brain makes a time machine and brings him back. Okay? 'Cuz I don't want a dead forever Pinky *sadness*