"Oh, look. If it isn't Sollux Captor."

Fuck.

The more often he heard that drawling voice of Eridan Ampora, the more often that Sollux was tempted to simply drop his backpack one day and smack the guy in the face. The entire college knew how much they hated one another, and if anything their spats usually drew a crowd, but today, on his way home from another mundane lesson, he was grateful that they were just passing one another by the gates. A daily ritual of hate.

"Fuck off, Ed. I really don't have time for this shit" Sollux grumbled. His lisp was so thick that sometimes he seriously considered avoiding the use of words beginning with S entirely. No end of troubles had come from his speech impediment in the past, but he couldn't bring himself to head to the orthodontists. If anything, he figured braces would make things worse. "Don't you have some where else to be? Or is it now at the point where you're actually waiting outside the college to argue with me?" he snapped, pressing his glasses up his nose and glaring through the dual shaded lenses.

Naturally Eridan was less than impressed with the snide remark that came right back at him and he rolled his eyes behind his thick frames. "As if I would waste my precious time hanging about for a piss stain on society like you. Really, If it wasn't for the fact my Uncle was courteous enough to employ your oldest brother, you'd be living off Mituna's disability benefit, no doubt. Ungh, it's fucking depressing to think I even have to attend the same college as you" he sighed, words dripping in loathing as they usually were whenever the two spoke.

Turning to look over his shoulder, he glared with hatred at the taller boy. Eridan was pushing his limits now, and Sollux was dead certain that the other boy was well aware of this fact. The way Eridan's thin lips slightly curved to add a disgustingly smug smile made it all too clear he knew he was hitting a nerve. The middle child of the Captor family was always a touchy subject for Sollux, so the fact Eridan have the audacity to even bring it up made him grit his teeth slightly. Sadly for his enemy, Sollux kept his cool and merely smirked back with his own hit at a particular sore spot of Eridan's.

"At least I didn't need to buy my way in, talent was enough to make them swing the doors wide open and practically roll out a red carpet for me." he smirked, flipping two fingers over his shoulder as he walked past his opponent. He could practically feel Eridan's eyes shooting contempt at the back of his head as he left him behind at the gates, starting the long walk home.

The closing remark had only been a small victory, however. Eridan wasn't stupid and had probably kicked the battle short. It was well known he'd done very well in his GCSEs, his grades a glitter of A*'s in every subject he'd chosen worthy of pursuing. However, Newark College was private and incredibly prestigious and would have turned Eridan down if it wasn't for the hefty sum his father had pushed their way. The Amporas were an aristocratic family that were very typical of the notion that it wasn't what you knew, but whom you knew. With fingers in various companies and such, there was rumours they were connected to the royal family, although Sollux was unsure if this was entirely true. Nevertheless, they had a good foothold in Newark city. Eridan's father owned several businesses, and his uncle - a man known as 'Dualscar Ampora' - worked with another member of Eridan's family at the local nightclub called Liquid. Really Sollux resented that he knew all this information, but it always paid well to know your enemies as well as your friends, of which he had few at the college.

Hell,The only reason Sollux had managed to get in was due to being highly skilled in the field of computing.

Though he'd always applied them where he really shouldn't be doing so.

One boring day, a 13 year old Sollux had gotten caught hacking into the government computers. Unsurprisingly he was reprimanded pretty damn swiftly and had received a sentence of eight months of 'open custody.' One year of probation. Boy wasn't that ever fun? Restricted use of the internet and a small fine on top. It hadn't really hindered him much but dealing with government ,the police and a threat of punishment was enough to make most boys near piss themselves. All in all it didn't matter now though as his mischief seemed to have impressed someone along the lines. Because now as he was on a path to join the very people he had hacked long ago.

Sollux turned a corner as he mulled over his future, taking care to side step a poster that bustled past in the late summer wind. This path and the rules he had to follow were a comfort of sorts. He knew where he was going to end up and what he had to do along the way; it was just a categorically large pain in the ass having to do it. Everything the tutor drawled on at him about computing were things he already knew, things that were trivial to him, but he had to complete the course before he could move on to university. A seriously dull means to a end.

But even with his life looking towards a job that paid well in an area he was good at, he felt like he should dare to break away from this path, like it was too predictable and his mind was starting to wonder down that train of thought when he realized he'd walked a full 45 minutes back home and was stood at the end of his street by his house.

"Oh."

Being as poor as the Captors were meant that they lived in the inner city, which was lucky even in itself when he thought about it. Council houses were so hard to get in this day and age. He knew there were some people who had been on the waiting list for years before they even got remotely close to biddng on a property. As much as he hated admitting it, they had been incredibly lucky that their mother's life insurance had paid out when she died. Everything was left to Almeis,his eldest brother, and he bought the house outright; well, most of it. There was still a bit left to pay off and they were so close to securing it that Almeis was constantly checking how much was left to pay at the end of each month. Add in the fact that Sollux was soon no longer to be considered a minor when he turned 18 in June meant that the three of them were desperate to buy the house, as their living costs would shoot up. It was yet another reason he'd opted to stay on his path towards a career in cyber security.

"Not long now . . ." he murmured to himself, pulling his house key from his pocket and unlocking the mustard yellow door to the end terraced house he called home. As far as he was concerned, there was nowhere in the world quite like 22 Sincil Bank, or 'Sinny Bank', as the locals called it.

Stepping inside, he was immediately punched by a hit of hot air, loud 8-bit music and the smell of burnt toast that seemed to rush out from the house like it had been trapped inside all day. God damnit. There was only one person who could subject a home to such torment like this. It seemed Mituna had put the heating on full blast and burnt his lunch again, making Sollux roll his eyes as he nudged the door closed gently with his foot.

"MITUNA!? ITS SEPTEMBER YOU DON'T NEED THE HEATING YOU FUCKING DOUCHEBAG-ALMEIS IS GOING TO LITERALLY DELETE ALL YOUR SAVES ON THE PLAYSTATION IF YOU KEEP DOING THIS. WE CAN'T AFFORD THIS SHIT!" he yelled, pressing his glasses up his nose as he kicked his trainers near the shoe rack and hung his hoodie . This was the fourth time this had happened this month. Though the lack of a response was starting to worry him a little before he heard the scrambling of feet on the floorboards above. Well, seemed his brother hadn't died from self inflicted heat exhaustion. Always good to know. He rubbed his temples before hearing the crashing noise of Mituna running down the staircase.

"I ACCIDENTLY THE HEATING." Mituna grinned, walking up to greet his younger brother by shoving him with a sweaty palm.

"No shit." Sollux snorted, shoving him back and making that stupid messy fluff Mituna called hair bounce about. How he saw anything through that thick black mess was a wonder, but he guessed it at least hid the red and blue eyes all three of the captors had. Apparently having a shitty lisp wasn't enough of a reason for people to pick on him and Mituna, no, they needed a partial albinism and a rare form of chronic migraine to suffer with as well. Spectacular. It was like their parents had given them nothing but the worst of their genetics without meaning to.

Though Sollux had it easy compared to Mituna. Someone who most people approached believing to be adorable and child like when they realized something was off about him. A brilliantly wonderful thing to watch as people would then recoil in horror upon discovering what a utter shit bag his brother was regardless of any issues he had conducting himself. And there were many.

"HEY SOLLUXTH HOWTH ITH HANGIN BRO?" Mituna grinned, papping his younger brother's shoulder and swaying on the spot a little as he looked at Sollux fiddling with the thermostat to turn the heating back off.

"It's fine, Mitz. I'm surprised you could fucking hear me over how loud your game was" he grumbled, heading past Mituna and towards the kitchen, knowing that his brother would follow him like an excitable puppy. Or at least he hoped he would. Mituna's balance issues meant the doctors would prefer him to use a zimmerframe but his brother was having none of that. No, a fall was nothing to Mituna who usually had bumps and bruises, but that didn't stop Sollux or Almeis attempting to catch him as they knew he didn't always manage to get back up again on his own.

"Unless you've suddenly turned into a reptile, you need to stop touching the thermostat or Almeis is going to take your allowance for the bills again AND delete your saves. Heat costs money you know." Maybe stating his point a second time would help it stick, though he wasn't hopeful.

"BUT I NEED IT LOUD. THO THEN-THEN I CAN KEEPED EVERYTHING QUIET" came the slightly irked response. Logic had never been Mituna's strong point, even before his accident, and Sollux wasn't about to argue with him about it either.

"Whatever. Almeis is going to be home soon, so get your shit together and bring down your plates. I KNOW you have plates up there, hoarded away like some sort of plate fetish" he snapped, narrowing his eyes at Mituna who held his hands up in surrender.

Mituna was able to make himself toast during the day and normally stayed in his bedroom playing video games, absorbed in MMO's or his old retro consoles. However, it meant that his room was usually where all the plates in the house had gone by the end of each day. Both Sol and Almeis were ever grateful that Mituna was particularly picky about being clean and having things in certain places however, meaning that whilst Mituna's room was an odd place (how many buttons did one guy need?,) it was at least organized.

"HOW?" Mituna asked, standing in the doorway and looking genuinely confused that Sollux would know such a thing.

"Because I can smell burnt toast. It was the first thing that hit me - asides from my skin melting and how stupidly loud your music was."

""BUT I NEED IT LOUD THO-"

"TUNA, get your fucking plates!" he snapped again, watching the other flip him off before running back upstairs with about as much thunderous noise as he did coming down them. "Shit..." he sighed a bit to himself as he filled the kettle up with water. Him and Mituna usually argued or snapped at one another, they were brothers after all and he was still wary that asshole was just as likely to need his help as he was to wipe snot on his tshirt.

Not that he'd change Mituna though, or anything about this part of his day anyway. Even if it was set to be altered soon. Starting 4pm Mituna came down to see Sollux come home or he'd simply burst into his room to see what he was up to. They'd then go downstairs to the kitchen and make tea for their eldest brother, who would come home to make dinner and such before going to work. Once he'd fucked off, Sollux and Mituna usually played games, procrastinated chores before Almeis rang to tell them to make sure said chores were done before finally heading to bed after leaving a meal in the fridge for their eldest brother to eat when he got home. Occasionally any bathtimes that needed to happen for Mituna was also added in (he was used to aiding Mituna in and out the bath by now.) All in All, Sollux was kept pretty busy.

Though nowhere near as busy as Almeis, who made the youngest Captor's eyes glance to the clock.

Their eldest brother was a manager at Liquid, Newark's busiest nightclub and had to be in during the day, as well as during nights. Most people never appreciated how much work it took to run a place like that, although Sollux suspected that the general manager was overworking Almeis. With him being on a salary rather than an hourly rate, the head honcho could squeeze all the hours from him he wanted as jobs were scarce. Gotta love a recession, Sollux thought bitterly as he grabbed a cup. Making tea for Almeis was a simple gesture, but it was at least appreciated and Sollux was happy to do it considering Almeis gave him an allowance without expecting him to get a part time job. Perhaps he was lucky in that respect, not that he wanted some shitty part time deal when he was destined for something so much better.

"I'm back" came Almeis's voice, the sound of the door opening and closing as if right on cue. Sollux lent back and gave a wave to his older brother as Mituna came crashing down the stairs once more, this time running straight over to the suited man and waving enthusiastically at him.

"I HAVE ALLED THE MUTHAFUCKIN PLATHES!" Mituna grinned, sniggering incessantly as Almeis groaned, rubbing his temples a little as he noted the stack of dirty plates in Mituna's arms.

"Sollux, I thought I told you to check his room before you left for college?" Came a stifled yawn from Almeis as he made his way into the kitchen.

"I did. These are all from when I was out" Sollux mumbled in reply, taking the dishes from Mituna and then nodding for him to go join their brother at the table. This was fairly routine: for the three of them to sit and have a drink together before Almeis made dinner. It had started off as more for Mituna's sake than anything (because they'd always sat with their mother), but ten years down the line and it was just normal now. Yes, Sollux liked to think the Captor household ran smoothly and without incident most times, though naturally as a band of three brothers, they were prone to arguments and such (and any fights seemed to be mostly between Sollux and Mituna.)

"SHITS TIDY" Mituna stated, shuffling off to the table after placing the plates near the sink (they were all plastic, otherwise they'd have no dishes left.)

"Good. Did you have a good day, Mituna? I would've asked earlier but I was dealing with a wall of fucking heat" Sollux asked, filling a beaker with honeyed milk for Mituna and a tea for Almeis; he himself usually just grabbed an energy drink from the fridge.

"YESTH."

"Sweet. Did you manage to get past Metropolis zone?" he mumbled, half paying attention as he passed the cups over to the other two.

"NOPE" Mituna seethed. His love of playing video games usually kept Mituna more than occupied on the days that Sollux had to go to college. Recently, he'd been playing Sonic the Hedgehog, and had gotten quite addicted to it. Although he loved video games, Mituna's death counts in the process of getting to the ends were legendary. Sadly, he'd struggled with one level on this game for some reason and had been replaying it over and over. There was the promise of a prize if he'd managed to complete it by today, but it seemed that Mituna had been unsuccessful in his venture. "TEH GAME ITH BROKEN! STUPID PIECED OF SHIT!"

Sollux grabbed his own drink from the fridge (a cold can of Rockstar Blue, he'd have the red one later.) He noticed a slight smile on his eldest sibling's face as he went to go and sit with them. "That's something of a shame Mituna. I had rather hoped you'd be able to beat it so you could earn that prize . . ." Almeis said airily, watching Mituna's expression carefully.

"I'M SORRY" he sighed, hanging his head and staring sadly into his milk. Sollux thought it was amazing to watch such an extreme spectrum of emotions display themselves so sincerely on someone's face. The fact Mituna couldn't hide his feelings usually outed him when he was trying to lie and cover something up.

"Well, it seems you're in luck" Almeis stated. "After speaking with Voland, he has agreed to let you do some work for us handing out promotional leaflets for the club when we're open. Remember how we spoke about this?" he asked, sipping his tea as Sol's eyes flickered between the two. Almeis had been trying to get Mituna a job so that he would have some work experience, as he hated the idea of Mituna being treated like an invalid all the time - almost as much as Sollux did. He himself felt relieved to hear that he would at least have a chance at some responsibilities, other than the small amounts of housework he was able to do, as it meant he would get to have something of a life outside the house.

"YETH."

"Then I think, in celebration of your employment, I could give you your prize anyway."

"AWWWWWWWWWWHH YISSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!" Mituna's eyes lit up behind that thick black fringe, and he looked this way and that as if expecting to see a box of some kind. However so such thing appeared, making the two younger Captors frown at one another. "GIMMIE THE THING U PRICK."

"I am never failed to be astounded by your impatience." Almeis tutted, pulling out his wallet and placing two tickets onto the table. Sol himself was curious as to why there were only two there, before Almeis shot him a look he knew all too well. Fuck.

"Holy shit, it's almost like you totally disregarded any plans i may have. Fucking incredible. . . Ungh . . . It's Saturday tomorrow anyway, I guess. Where am I taking him?" Sollux groaned, rubbing his temples as he accepted this easily as he could. He was always the one to take Mituna on days out as Almeis worked so much. Not that it was too much of a problem, as his days would otherwise be spent glued to his computer screen and bering badgered by Karkat, so at least he got to go out as well. Besides, most 17 year olds were out on the weekend at parties or trying to score booze among other activities, which was something he'd been invited along to. Sure, he didn't really mind them but he didn't actively seek out social meetings like that, so an excuse to avoid an invitation from his ex to her party tomorrow seemed like a God send more than anything.

"The Dark Carnival is in town. I overheard a few of the staff members went to see it the other week and they said it was brilliant, though certainly not for children. These tickets are for the matinee performance at 8pm tomorrow." Almeis droned, pushing the tickets towards Sol. "Bring your passport though, as you'll need to prove you're over 16 . . . er . . . Mituna's as well. The last thing I want is for you to walk in and then get sent home again."

"So it's like a circus-? Wait, you mean this is what the huge purple tents on South Common are for?" Sollux frowned, ignoring the excited gibberish Mituna was spouting. South Common was a huge set of fields, rising up to what was one of the many large hills that circled the city of Newark from the rest of the world. It was common ground, so a lot of people usually went there for Sunday football, or funfairs when they came to town. "Me and KK saw them setting up last weekend when we took Suffy for a walk."

"Yes, that's where its located, it seems. I'll give you taxi fare and what not, as I don't think it's wise to walk to South Common in the dark. Mituna won't be starting work till next Saturday anyway, so it makes sense that he should enjoy his last free weekend" Almeis mused, setting his cup down and then getting up. "Do make sure that you both do your the chores . I will unload the HDD's from your towers if I have to unload the dishwasher again."

"IT WAS SOLSTH FUCKING FAULT, HE CHALLENGED ME TO 2PLAYEEDTH SONIC" Mituna whined, getting up as well to try and avoid a scolding. Not that the scolding had been that bad, Almeis was particularly tired and seemed to be taking it easy on the eloquent wordings that usually left his head spinning.

"Fuck off, Mituna. You challenged me by pretending that you'd completed it" Sol grumbled.

"FUCK YOU."

"I'm going to launch my cup as a projectile towards one of you, do you really wish to stand around and find out whom it is or are you going toget some saucepans out before I cancel my pre-orders?" Almeis muttered, getting up to start pulling things out of the cupboard. Mituna and Sollux couldn't cook for shit, so Chef's duty was always left to Almeis.

"Yeah, right!" Sollux snorted. "You play that game more than I do!"

"Saucepans." said Almeis in a tone so cold the window's may well have frosted over.

"Fine, fine . . . I'm going to go let KK know I won't be going to that party tomorrow" he sighed, feigning disappointment as Mituna tilted his head.

"YOURED NOT OUT TWO GET SUM PUSSTHY THEN?"

He facepalmed so hard that he thought his glasses might break, ignoring the sound of Almeis scolding Mituna over hysterical sniggers. It was going to be a fairly average night at the Captors, it seemed.


-twinArmegeddons began pestering CarcinoGenetacist-

TA: hey numbnut2.

CG: WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU BOTHERING ME ABOUT NOW?

TA: a2 iif ii would ever want anythiing from you a2iide2 from two check you haven't fucked thii2 computer up liike your la2t one.

TA: ii'm not comiing out tomorrow for CC'2 party.

CG: WOAH, SURPRISE OF THE CENTURY! SOLLUX HAS TURNED DOWN A PARTY INVITATION. CALL THE BBC WE HAVE A HEADLINE.

CG: I DON'T EVEN FUCKING KNOW WHY ANYONE BOTHERS TO INVITE YOU TO THIS SHIT.

CG: THIS IS THE FOURTH INVITATION IN A ROW YOU'VE TURNED DOWN. DO YOU JUST RECEIVE THEM AND THEN SHRED THEM UP IN YOUR SHITTY TEETH?

TA: real mature draggiing my teeth iintwo thiis so early, you must've been wastiing anythiing remotely good screamiing at your brother.

CG: SAYS THE ASSHOLE THAT MADE A FUCKING HUGE BLUE DONG SHOW UP ON MY SCREEN IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LESSON WHILST THE TUTOR WAS CHECKING MY FUCKING WORK.

TA: you 2hould hiide your dong2 better.

CG: I DIDN'T FUCKING HAVE ANY ON MY COMPUTER TO BEGIN WITH. YOU WERE JUST BEING A GRADE A ASSHOLE.

TA: ii need to keep thii2 a2 2hort a2 ii need two go and eat diinner 2o read the next liines carefully from now on.

TA: ii'm not comiing tomorrow becau2e ii have two take Miitz out.

CG: THIS HAPPENS SO OFTEN THAT IF I HADN'T MET THE GUY I'D THINK YOU WERE MAKING ONE FUCKING LAME ASS ATTEMPT AT AN EXCUSE.

TA: whatever. food call2, ii have 2hiit two do and that doe2n't iinclude gettiing biitched at by almeii2.

TA: ii'll catch you onliine on 2unday iif you fancy tryiing two farm a land for grii2t.

CG: YEAH I'M UP FOR THAT. DON'T FUCKING KILL YOUR CHARACTER'S DREAM SELF THIS TIME. I DON'T KNOW HOW THE FUCK YOU ENDED UP WITH TWO.

TA: gtg, diinner, al2o, the 2burb mmo update wiill be due out toniight 2o leave your computer on 2o the cliient can do iit2 shiit.

CG: HOW FUCKING STUPID DO YOU THINK I AM.

TA: enough that you ran the BAT file ii 2ent you and told you not to open.

CG: THAT WAS ENTIRELY YOUR FAULT AND YOU STILL NEED TO FIX THAT INSTEAD OF JUST REINSTALLING EVERYTHING LIKE SOME CLEAN SLATE IS GOING TO CORRECT THE UNGODLY AMOUNT OF SHIT THAT SPREAD FROM THAT.

CG: FUCK YOU LEFT THIS RUNNING?

CG: AT LEAST CLOSE YOUR DAMN WINDOWS BEFORE YOU FUCK OFF SHITBITE, ALSO JUST SO YOU KNOW SPRITING MY LUSUS IN THIS GAME DIDN'T MAKE IT ANY LESS UNBEARABLE, WHY DID I EVEN FUCKING LISTEN TO YOU?

-CarcinoGenetacist [CG] ceased pestering twinArmegeddons [TA] -