Author's Note: Wrote this without a read-through. This is my first story posted in the South Park fandom so I'm a wee bit nervous. I hope you like it!
Also, as mentioned in some of the reviews already (by the way- thank you so much for those. Really lovely!) I'd like to say that something in this fic seems a bit unrealistic but... it's South Park, so... it just works. :)
When the girls in his class decided to Photoshop themselves it was heaven. He no longer had to stare at the hot porno babes in his magazines or crack the proxies on the school computers to access porn during computer lab. Now he could look at the girls in what he hoped was a glimpse into the future; his ten year old mind was already numbed from the testosterone that was just beginning to make slight changes to his body, not that he was complaining.
Kenny waved goodbye to his friends and winked at Heidi, who tried to pull of the shy-slut look as she blushed and waved her fingers at him as she twirled her hair. He tightened the hood to his parka as he opened the door to leave the school and instantly felt the bitter winds of Colorado's nastiest winter in years. Snow endlessly fell and although he was bundled tight in his coat he wore nothing underneath. His skin prickled and he shivered as he boarded the bus with Stan, Kyle, Cartman, and Butters. They all talked and joked around as they rode the bus, as well as flew Cartman's action figure out the window with strings, which entertained everyone. All in all it was a good day, a good Friday, and he wasn't going to let the fact that the electricity went off two days ago in his house bother him. He was too jacked up on his pre-pubescent hormones to worry about that right now.
"So hockey down at Stark's Pond at 3 tomorrow, right?" Kyle asked Stan as they walked off the bus twenty minutes later. The boy in the poof ball hat nodded to the redhead and grinned.
"Yeah, we're totally gonna kick Craig and those guys' asses!" Stan chirruped excitedly as they waited for Cartman to shuffle off the bus. He waddled to them and huffed angrily as he slowed down.
"Why the fuck are you running?!"
"It's cold," Kenny replied, his voice muffled by his parka yet they understood him anyway.
"We weren't running, fatass," Kyle retorted in a barking tone that Kenny was so used to hearing. Their infamous daily fight was about to begin, again, and he really wanted to get home. So he started walking the other direction, to the railroad tracks.
"Kenny, where you going?!" Stan called almost desperately as Cartman slipped in a Jew insult that turned his super best friend's face redder than the auburn curls he hid.
"Home, it's too fucking cold for this shit!" He yelled back, hoping he had been understood. Stan nodded and waved at him as he turned and headed to his shack of a home.
As he carefully crossed the tracks and made sure his shoelaces didn't get stuck like yesterday he caught sight of his house and grimaced. Seeing the holy roof and broken windows with beer bottles and Pabst Blue Ribbon cans scattered across the snowy ground was nearly enough to break his mood. But he placed that pervy grin back on his covered face and stepped up the cement blocks made to replace the stairs that rotted out the past year.
Kevin would be in detention until 5:30 and his parents were probably still out making that deal that had taken a three-day travel. The last he heard they were in some town called Lovelock; he didn't want to know where they got the money to get there. Karen was probably over at Ruby's, he saw her get a ride from her parents anyway, so he had the whole house to himself. Which was rare. So he was even happier at that prospect.
All he had to think about were those boobs, asses, and completely fake faces that found their way to the internet, in his phone, and he'd be set for... well not very long at all, but he was working on that. Kenny never really thought the girls in his class were hot, some were pretty, some were semi-decent, but because of Photoshop they were now bombshells; on the internet, that is.
But as he opened the door all prospects of getting off to the thought of Bebe's huge tits flooded his mind as he heard the quiet, high-pitched sob that was so recognizable to his ear.
"Karen?" He called, pulling down his hood and was instantly met with a biting chill to his cheeks. He heard a sniffle and walked to the closet that was converted into a room, big enough for a cot that she slept on. That's where she was curled up with tears streaked down her reddened face.
"K-Kenny..." she sobbed, opening her arms slightly; the blonde lowered himself to her and she fell in his arms in a sobbing mess that only he could ever console. She was always crying, always sad, and he was the one to pick up the broken pieces and put them back together. Every night. Only... this was way too soon for her to start crying.
"What's wrong, Kar-bear?" He asked gently, using he nickname he came up with. She grabbed the doll she had gotten from Santa for Christmas years ago, except he had spent three weeks of his home economics class learning how to sew dolls so she could finally have a decent gift. One of the eyes fell off right away and half of the doll's hair was now missing, but she loved it all the same. Karen said she liked her doll that way though which made Kenny feel a little better.
"W-we were at recess and Kyler Hansen w-was showing pictures of... of some of the girls in my class. A-and... and they're so pretty. T-t-then at second recess everyone else had them all except me... and they m-m-made me sit with the ugly kids... and Ruby didn't even talk to me. They told me... I was too skinny and my hair was gross and..." she trailed off in a sniffle as she rubbed her eyes. Her shoulders quaked and her eyes were horribly tinged with red.
Kenny felt his throat tighten and pure dread course through his blood. His heart thudded painfully as he tightened his embrace around her and she curled up in his arms. She felt so small, so fragile. As he looked at her, he realized she was already so broken, so shattered, with no self-esteem and was more depressed than anyone else he had ever known. Only she tried to be happy and smile; that's what hurt the most. He knew Karen didn't need to deal with bullying now; she was the runt of her class, just like he was. They were both incredibly small for their ages due to malnutrition, and although no one ever bullied him he knew everyone thought he was weird. Karen didn't need the stress of popularity and who's prettier than who...
"...and Kenny, do I really smell bad?" she whimpered as she looked up at him with those sad doe eyes. Kenny shook his head and tucked a lock of her brunette hair behind her ear as he smiled sadly at her.
"No, they're just jerks..." Kenny trailed off, unsure of what to say. Karen buried her head in his shoulder and shook her head. "All the girls had new pictures?"
So the cheerleaders' idea was now spreading to the younger classes. Karen was in second grade; she didn't need to worry about being pretty yet. She was too young for that stuff, all of the girls in her class were. Realization hit him as he looked at his younger sister in such a vulnerable state; she wasn't the only one who felt the pressure to be thought of as beautiful in the eyes of the school. His friends took to Photoshop to change pretty much everything about them, to make them look like Kardashian incarnates, and he wasn't helping the situation at all. Now his sister was caught in the crossfire of this Photoshop pandemic and he couldn't bear to see her in anymore pain than she already had to deal with.
But the girls in his class were a little sister, an oldest daughter, a friend, a little cousin, little girls, who were caught up in the idea that beauty, and only beauty, gets you places.
Now even the porn stars on the browser history of the computer lab's back corner computer were little girls who got caught up in the beauty race. Little girls who were daughters, sisters, who just wanted to be loved. Looking at them would now somehow feel wrong. Damn his mind. Damn those hot girls.
"Y-yeah and they didn't even... look like them. But then it did... Kenny, why am I ugly?"
"You're not ugly, Karen," he assured quietly as he took her hand in his and squeezed gently. She looked up at him as she sniffled and rubbed at her eyes, "you're not too skinny, you're just growing differently..." of course that was a lie. He could feel her spine as he hugged her, feel every rib-bone, and he was certain she had no body fat on her; people could say the same for him, if he didn't wear his parka all the time. But he didn't want her to think about the nights she had to deal with the gnawing hunger that was so strong it brought her to tears. "Your hair is really pretty and thick too, long, and kinda curly but not so you don't have to worry about wanting it curled or straightened." Bathing in the basin in the bathroom filled with melted snow was difficult for everyone; it was more like dunk your hair in then use your hand to wash your body; Kenny didn't remember the last time he used soap. Karen's hair, while thick and long just as he described, was in the same condition as his; limp, greasy, knotted, with split ends and a couple of bad haircuts still worn in layers that looked like a four year old's styling. If she had clean and one-length hair it would be exactly as described. But this was his sister, who didn't need her heart broken anymore. "And you don't smell bad at all. People just like smelling fruit but you smell like... earth."
Their clothes reeked of pot and oftentimes they went a couple of weeks without washing their clothes. Kenny usually tried washing his clothes in Stark's Pond or the snow when desperate. His clothes had a lake smell to them, unlike Karen's. It was a terrible mix with pot and body odor. Karen usually went to her friend Ruby's house twice a week and stayed on Saturday nights so she was able to wash her clothes then. When he stayed at Kyle's house, or Butters', they insisted he washed his too. Butters even tried giving him some clothes that didn't fit him anymore.
"Yeah, earth. It's a calming smell," he said with a growing smile. That wasn't exactly a lie. "Besides, fruity smells give me a headache, and you're not fruity. You're earthy."
"Is that a good thing?" Karen asked him, Kenny nodded and grinned.
"It means you're cool, and calm, and happy with the way things are, even if things suck. Always happy, hopeful, that's you, Kar." He said with a smile as he ran his fingers through her hair. "Sit up," he told her, nudging her onto the edge of the cot between his legs. She looked back at him curiously and he tapped her on the head.
"What're you doin'?" She asked quietly, he just smiled and separated her brunette hair in three parts, then began criss-crossing them in one long braid. A few strands of hair stuck out due to different lengths, but as he thought it would, her hair looked thicker, cleaner, prettier. She ran her hand over the braid and turned to Kenny with a bright smile on her face. Her eyes were still puffy and rimmed with red, but her smile made her glow. Her two front teeth were missing, lost later than most of the other students in her class, and smudges of dirt were on her face.
Kenny licked his sleeve and Karen squirmed as he rubbed at the dirt under her eye and on her chin.
"Ewww..." she whined with a quiet giggle that caused Kenny to grin and laugh softly. He dried her face and hummed happily as he stood up and grabbed her hand, "Keeeennyyy stop!" She cried with a pink tint on her freckled cheeks. He shook his head and ran to their tiny bathroom. A fraction of light shined in from the half window; it was enough for her to see her reflection.
"What do you see?" He asked her, looking in the mirror with her.
"Um... me..." she murmured.
"Do you see anything wrong with you?" Karen was quiet as she touched her face, over her forehead, and put her hands on her cheeks. Her warm hand grabbed Kenny's as she shook her head.
"No, I don't think so, but... everyone else-"
"Everyone else doesn't matter. What you think and how you see you is what's important. There was a stupid fad I fell into a year ago that was really stupid and my friend Kyle was the only one who didn't. We pretty much ditched him 'cause he was "different" than us. I feel bad about that. But Karen, you're doing the same as him. And you are so much better than everyone else because you see that what you really look like and you're happy with that. Just like him."
"Kenny..." she trailed off, tears in her eyes as she grabbed his shirt and hugged him tightly, "do you think I'm pretty?" She asked. Kenny sighed and shook his head. Her lip trembled as she stiffened in his arms. "B-but you-"
"Kar-bear, you're not pretty and you never will be. 'Cause you're beautiful. And don't let anybody ever tell you otherwise."
Her teary-eyed smile was enough to light up the world for a thousand years.
Kevin finally came home by the time it was dark. Once Karen was asleep in Kenny's room, wrapped in his old sheet and baby blanket, as well as some old towels to stay warm, Kenny slipped on the black cloak and mask and sighed heavily as he looked down at his outfit. It was still baggy, and he still had mud and bloodstains from his last patrol but he couldn't complain. This time he wasn't lurking in the shadows to protect South Park, though. This time he had a mission.
He hurried through the quiet, dark house, out the door, and down the street. He practically flew over the railroad tracks as he ran down Kyle, Stan, and Cartman's block. Mysterion remained in the shadows as he ran up the street in the blustery December night and felt his teeth chatter as he turned North. A gust of wind nearly blew him back, much to his embarrassment, and his body almost convulsed from the frigid wind. He stiffened, brace himself, and continued down the sidewalk.
He didn't bother knocking as he approached the house. Mysterion climbed the tree in the front yard and took a deep breath as he lunged for the roof. His feet dug into the shingles as he slid down and for a moment he felt as if he would fall. Yet his heel made contact with the gutter and he dragged himself up. A light was on and purple shades told him this was the room of the person he was looking for. He knocked the glass three times, he didn't want to startle anyone, and heard quiet generic pop music turn off as feet padded toward him.
The raven-haired girl covered her mouth as she screamed. Mysterion held up a hand and shook his head as she trembled and backed away.
"It's okay," he mouthed, "we need to talk." Had no clue what else to say. Hesitantly, Wendy opened her window and Mysterion hopped through. Warmth engulfed him and he almost smiled in relief.
"Mysterion...? What...?" She asked. Mysterion cleared his throat and turned to the ten year old girl with a grimace.
"You're the one who started the Photoshop mess at school, aren't you?" Her hazel eyes lowered in shame as she nodded. "You need to fix this."
"I can't! I've tried, no one understands that I'm not trying to be a hater. Everyone's happy with me now that I did it and... maybe it's better off this way."
"The younger students are doing it too." Wendy's eyes widened as she looked to her desktop computer. She shook her head and bit her lip. "The second graders bullied a little girl today because she doesn't have an edited picture. Kind of like you were."
"The second graders? Oh my God. Mysterion, what can I do?" Mysterion sighed heavily and clenched his fists as he looked to the floor.
"How did it begin?"
"I showed Butters Stotch how girls in magazines and tabloids are just altered in Photoshop by editing a picture of Lisa Burger and he uploaded it to Facebook and Instagram..." he sighed heavily and pinched his nose in a Stan-like mannerism he had picked up through the years.
"Can I use your computer? Your Facebook and Instagram account?"
"Don't you have... oh." She murmured in realization. Mysterion gave a nod and for a moment Wendy saw an almost condescending look on his face before she nodded, granting him permission.
"Do you have a list of the girls who have edited their photos so far?" She laughed bitterly and sniffled as she shook her head.
"I only know the cheerleaders and myself but... look. Everyone's doing it. Even the boys. Jason, Clyde, Brian Gueermo..." Wendy sighed heavily, "I don't want my boyfriend to... to do that. Once he sees the boys are starting to do it, he's kind of a follower that way." Mysterion gave a nod as he typed in the names of all cheerleaders and clicked on the photographs.
Hours before, these photos gave him the best kiddy boner he ever had. Now they just made his stomach feel sour. As he reported each and every one he realized dismally that Facebook and posting pictures wasn't to blame. Photoshop was.
"Wendy, I need you to call Kyle Broflovksi."
"I thought Kyle was..." she trailed off, then shook her head, "don't you have a phone?"
"I... just call him," he snapped, nearly losing the gravel-tone to his voice. Wendy's eyebrows furrowed as she looked at him for a moment before she scrolled through her contacts and hit "call" when reaching Kyle's number.
"Wendy?" he heard the voice of one of his best friends ask.
"No, it's Mysterion."
"Don't use my name." Mysterion interrupted harshly. Kyle sighed on the other end and he knew he was rolling his eyes.
"Why are you calling on Wendy's phone?"
"I'm working on a case and need your help." Mysterion said quietly, hoping that would be enough information. Thankfully, it was.
"Fine, but I'm not going to jail for you again."
"Thanks, and no, that's not necessary." If he weren't in superhero mode it would be more along the lines of, "I owe you one, dude!" but if he spoke like that then his identity could be compromised. And Kyle knew that's exactly what he meant. He already had to go through desperate measures to prevent the South Park police department from arresting Kyle when Mysterion rose to power once again. Currently, Mysterion was known to the residents of Park County as No One. "I need you to get rid of Photoshop completely, overwrite the security keys and everything so that once people try to install it it won't work. Just... completely destroy Photoshop in every way possible."
"Why? Are you crazy, you realize that-"
"That Photoshop is going to completely fuck up the self-esteems of every person who uses it. It's causing us all to see society's expectations of how to look rather than the reality of what is seen in the mirror and what others see. It's warping the minds of everyone, especially the students at South Park."
"You were just looking at how hot Bebe's boobs looked in-"
"Things change, Kyle Broflovski!" Mysterion growled in a slightly faltering voice. Wendy furrowed her eyebrows at Mysterion; she must have heard Kyle's comment.
"Besides, I used it to change my hair and fix my nose and Annie, Heidi, and Red have all been texting me since I uploaded that picture to Facebook. And Photoshop could make you taller and not so scrawny."
"Fuck that and fuck you for saying that, just do what I say or you'll regret it." Mysterion warned menacingly. Kyle sighed heavily and the tapping of keys could be heard as the redhead typed something in to his computer.
"Okay, just give me a minute." Kyle told him. The sound of keys tapping filled Mysterion's ear and he remained silent as he waited for Kyle to say something. "Is their password really "password"?" He asked himself as he continued to type and click. He made a disgruntled noise and sighed heavily then resumed his furious tapping on the keys and mouse. "Ask Wendy if she had Photoshop on her computer?" Mysterion turned to the dark-haired girl, who nodded.
"Try to open it." He opened her start page and double-clicked on Photoshop. A warning message popped up, asking him to uninstall the program.
"It's uninstalling itself..." Mysterion told Kyle gruffly yet quietly. He heard a half-surprised laugh as he clicked on his own program.
"The next time everyone tries to open the program this is what they will receive; the message is saying it's corrupt, right? Well, I deleted the program setup and every file from Adobe's mainframe so they won't be able to recreate the product... not for awhile at least. I can't say that trial programs will work the same way but... this is your progress." Kenny turned to Wendy, who beamed at him and jumped for joy as she squealed quietly in excitement.
"That's... genius. Thank you, Kyle." Mysterion said with a smile on his face.
"Can I ask why the change of heart?" Kyle asked curiously. He sighed softly and pulled at his cloak; he was cold still.
"A second grader was bullied because now they have access to the program and she didn't know about it."
"You know exactly who it was." Mysterion snapped before Kyle could say a name. Wendy looked at him with her head tilted slightly, obviously she was confused. "I will talk to you tomorrow. Thank you for your help and remember next time you need a favor I will be of assistance." That was code for "I got your back, dude."
"Yeah, yeah, I know you take your brotherly duties more seriously than Myster-" Mysterion hung up the phone and handed it to Wendy who wore an astonished expression.
"The problem is cleared up for now. The photos were deleted from Facebook and Instagram but I can't stop them from being reuploaded." He explained. Wendy nodded and smiled gently at him as she walked up to him.
"Thank you, Mysterion. I... I'm sorry I let myself..."
"It wasn't your fault, Wendy. You tried and your friends will realize how stupid this was." He replied gruffly, walking toward the window. "Let me know if you need any more help with this issue, or anything else."
"How do I do that?"
"Just ask, I'll know." He answered, semi-honestly. He actually did nightly patrols on all of his friends. And somewhere down the line Wendy was considered a friend. Mysterion opened the window and stepped out into the dismal dark and bitter cold night. He turned to shut the window but Wendy stuck her head out.
"Wait!" Wendy cried, almost desperately. "It was your sister, wasn't it? What Kyle said, about your brotherly duties. She was the one that was bullied, wasn't she?" Mysterion lowered his head as he gave a soft nod, "and you're just looking out for her."
"I'm looking out for everyone, Wendy. This is the best for everyone. Good night, I'll see you on Monday." He snapped and jumped off of the roof.
Monday rolled around faster than Kenny thought it would. He got off the bus with Stan, Kyle, and Cartman that morning and smiled as Karen hurried off shortly after. Kyle slowed his walking and turned to look at Kenny, who had his arm around Karen as they talked quietly to each other. They did this every day.
Karen smiled happily up at Kenny, showing off her missing teeth. Her hair was pulled back in a braid he had worked on during the bus ride, which resulted in a slew of insults from Cartman. But she seemed overjoyed that he did something so kind for her. Seeing her smile like that was totally worth it.
"You shouldn't have any problems today but if you do find me at lunch and I'll help you, okay?" He told her as they walked up to the doors. She nodded and clung to his arm.
"Kay," she said as they walked down the hallway, once they reached the end they would go in opposite directions, so he stopped. Kyle, Cartman, and Stan continued on their way. Kenny opened his duct-taped book bag and pulled out the brown paper bag he stole from his dad to store his rare lunch in. Today, handed Karen the old apple and slice of bread. Her eyes widened and she grinned up at Kenny as she hugged him tightly. "Thank you!" The boy in the parka smiled sadly and ran a hand over the top of her head, touching her hair that had been washed a couple of days ago. She smelled really good today, like grapes. It made him smile. He'd have to thank Craig, although the apathetic boy was always confused by his gratitude. "This is the best day ever!" She cried excitedly as she held the apple and dry bread in her hand. He gave her the brown bag, and she quickly put her lunch back in the sack. He felt his stomach twist with hunger and he stared wistfully at the sack but quickly tore his eyes away. He'd try to steal some of Cartman's food today.
"Now, I'll see you at recess, but let me know if you need me. Okay?" Karen nodded and stood on tip-toes as she wrapped her tiny arms around him in a tight hug.
"Okay, thank you, Kenny."
"You're welcome, Kar-bear. Now get to class." He said with a smile. She grinned toothily at him and nodded.
"I love you!" She chirped happily. He nodded and let go of her.
"I love you too," he replied, standing up fully as he swung his bag over his shoulder again. He turned to get a drink from the fountain yet stopped when he saw Wendy smiling quietly at him as she walked. He looked down and pulled his hood up once more, hiding his face, then bent down for a drink.
As he took a sip, girls rushed from the bathroom yelling and squealing, causing everyone around to look at them curiously. Kenny gave them a glance and saw the purple, green, and grey question marks in their hands.
"This one says "not all stars come from the sky!"" A third grader cried as she held a green question mark.
"Yeah? Well mine says "beauty doesn't come in a size!"" One of her friends yelled as they ran down the hall excitedly.
"Who did this?" Principal Victoria asked in shock, holding her own question mark as she followed the trail of girls slowly as she re-read the quote on the paper over and over again. Kenny bit back a smile as he watched the boys flock in the same way the girls had. Wendy shook her head and smiled as she watched the scene.
Bebe and Red came running down the hall, each with their own question marks in hand.
"Wendy! Check your locker!" Red cried excitedly, holding up hers. Kenny could faintly read the quote, "beauty is not in the face, it is a light in your heart."
"Why?" She asked skeptically. Kenny stopped drinking the water and walked down the hall with his head low. Before he turned he could hear Bebe's response.
"Someone left little notes in everybodys' locker! Like, literally everyone! And they're all different quotes! I think it was Mysterion!"
As Kenny walked down the fourth grade hall the clamor was almost deafening. His friends all shook their heads as he walked by yet said nothing as even they smiled and tucked their personal messages in their bags or binders. Kenny opened his locker and grabbed his notebook. He grabbed the blank black question mark and stuffed it in his bag.
"Ken y-you're not gonna r-read your message?!" Butters asked he approached the shorter blonde. Kenny shook his head at his somehow best friend and shrugged his shoulders. "I-I mean... it was Mysterion who did this, r-right?" Kenny nodded and leaned on his locker as Kyle and Stan approached, holding theirs and talking animatedly to each other as they looked at the matching colored question marks. "Well, shucks... t-thanks, Ken." Butters turned the paper around, and Kenny read, "What makes you different makes you beautiful." He remembered that one; he put that as Butters' for a reason.
"Don't thank me," he replied quietly, his voice heavily muffled by his parka. He could practically taste the lake.
"Well, what did your message say?" He asked as Red, Bebe, and Wendy walked passed. Kenny shrugged his shoulders.
"Uh... I didn't write one for me." He didn't see the point. Not when he was the one who tagged the entire school last night.
"Why not?" Butters asked with a grimace.
"See?!" Bebe cried, pulling out a purple question mark in Wendy's locker. The black-haired girl read the message Kenny had picked out just for her and smiled weakly. He remembered exactly what it said; "You are stronger than you were yesterday. Stay beautiful." He felt it suited her well.
The question marks were the talk of the school and Kenny couldn't admit he wasn't at least a little proud and happy. They were mentioned by every teacher, who found a question mark on their desk, by every lunch lady, talked about in the morning announcements, and thanks went to the anonymous person; although everyone knew exactly who it was. Mysterion.
If the superhero wasn't the second most mentioned topic of the day then Satan wasn't in a threesome with Hitler and Bin Laden. And Kenny had walked into that portion of hell last week; and it truly was hell. Everyone was buzzing with the name, and suddenly pictures from earlier in the year surfaced of Mysterion, from newspapers, magazines, online, fanart depicting him of something he wasn't... they were everywhere.
Karen hadn't come up to him at lunch and she was absolutely glowing at recess. She really only wanted to talk to Kenny for five minutes so she could play with her friends; which was odd. But he was happy for her and he was glad to know her day was going great. This was the happiest she had been since... well, ever. And it was enough to bring tears to his eyes. But he brushed them away to join his friends in a vicious game of kickball that resulted in Kyle getting a bloody nose from Cartman.
All in all today Kenny felt good; better than Friday, even. And that was nice. Really, really nice. Except he was a little tired; by the last class he was practically dragging himself down the hall in pure exhaustion. He was going to go home and pass out, and hopefully sleep through the entire night. Now that was definitely something to look forward to.
The boy in the parka yawned as he finally approached his locker and knelt down so Stan could grab his bag from the locker above his own. As Kenny opened his locker, his eyes widened as he found several post-it notes on the back of the door. At first he was angry that someone had figured out his code, but as he looked at the handwriting he realized it was his friends'.
He took the first one and saw it was from Cartman. It read, "Poor people suck but I guess you don't suck as much, welfare whore fag. -The Coon." Kenny rolled his eyes at that but couldn't help but smile as he stuck it on his notebook.
The next was definitely Stan's handwriting and it read, "Friends buy you food. Best friends eat your food, so you can eat my food whenever you want." Kenny snorted but knew he'd take him up on that offer whenever possible. Maybe even tonight.
Kyle's was next, his handwriting was significantly better than anyone else he knew and it read, "Making a million friends is not a miracle. The miracle is making a friend who will stand by you when millions are against you. Thank you. Kyle."
That seemed more relevant to him rather than Kenny but he wouldn't say anything. It was the thought that counted; although Stan and Kyle would always be super best friends and he'd be third-wheeling it until the end of his days. But that's the way they should be,he liked it that way.
The next was one from Butters, he could tell by the hearts as the dots for the "i"s. His post-it not, blue, read, "If you could see yourself just for a day, you'd see how everyone else sees you. And God you are beautiful." Kenny smiled weakly and set that note at the top of his notebook, then stared at a pink question mark. He definitely had not done this.
"Next time you think of beautiful things, don't forget to count yourself in." Kenny furrowed his eyebrows curiously yet said nothing as Butters and Kyle started walking toward him. So his friends had discussed him not writing his own stupid quote. He didn't need one and it would be ridiculously stupid to give himself one. But that last note had him uneasy. Someone had stolen his style, knew his locker combination, and said something like this without allowing him to know who it was.
"Kenny! Did you get the notes?!" Butters cried excitedly. Kenny stuffed his notebook in his locker and grabbed his bag as he quickly shut the door. He stood up and nodded, then moved out of Stan's way as he opened his door. "What'd you think?! W-we thought you'd like some notes too, after what you did today."
"It was nice, thank you," he replied shortly, hoping no one else heard what his apparent best friend had said. Kyle just smiled at him and looked to Stan as he waited for his super best friend to finish grabbing his stuff.
Wendy walked by, talking with Heidi, Red, Bebe, and Nichole, and Stan briefly spoke to her before they went to their lockers, giggling and talking. A piece of pink paper fell and Kenny picked it up; he saw a question mark was cut out of the construction paper. He felt his stomach drop and he looked toward the girls with a dumbfounded expression on his face.
"Hey... one of you dropped this," he said, hoping they heard him. Bebe, Nichole, and Wendy turned around, and the raven-haired girl smiled as her friends looked at the paper curiously.
"No we didn't," Bebe replied curtly as she returned to talking about her current crush on whatever-his-name-is. Just as Kenny was about to turn away, he caught Wendy's eyes and she smiled quietly when they locked gazes. He looked to his locker, gave a short wave, and lowered his face as he walked with his friends to the bus.
Nothing else needed to be said.