He realized that the hint of green he saw out of the corner of his eye was not a hallucination when he feels a fist make contact with the side of his face. Slick had just taken a second to leave his hide-out to buy a pack of cigarettes, taking a short stop in a nearby alley when he found himself reeling from a very well placed hit.
He reached for his cards and within seconds he sees his assailant- as if it were any question who she was- take out a lance and hit him with the dull side, sending Slick flying into the brick wall, his vision dimming in the already pitch-black light.
“Fuck you!” She snarled, and this gave Slick enough of a warning for him to pull out a card. He flipped it between his fingers and shot out his arm, hoping for his knife to make contact with her Carapace- he didn’t mean to kill her, but she could get wounded as much as he liked.
“No-“ She knocked the knife from his hand and pushed him onto the ground, trapping him beneath her weight and immobilizing him beneath her lance. “Fuck you, Slick you are not going to be stabbing me there is no way I am going to let you stab me, Slick-“ The lance tightened on his wrists, the long weapon reaching it’s way across and crushing his windpipe. And to think she was in this same position with him not too long ago, though there was less clothing involved and her yelling had a different sort of content. He’d started to grin at the memory when Snowman took a hand and slapped him across the face.
“Jesus y’ harpy, get the hell offa me!” He said, struggling beneath her.
“You fucking bastard! You liar!” Another strike.
“What the hell are you babbling about you bitch?!” He growled, getting tired of this very quickly and wishing that he could just stab her, but he guesses that he should be happy that she isn’t doing the same to him.
“You are a liar! You told me that you wore a condom you son of a bitch!”
Oh. So this was what she was on about. It wasn’t a relief though, and Slick could feel a cold sweat forming at the back of his neck. “Well it wasn’t me, hon. I’m clean. Maybe it was one of those green guys who got you sick-“
She cut him off with another slap. “No, you bastard, I’m not compatible with anyone who I have slept with but you”
He squints, a little confused when she shakes him again. “What, you mean that they don’t have-“
Another strike to his face, and he’s really getting sick of this bullshit when she sits up, taking her weight of the lance. “No, no, you idiot, I mean-“ He takes the opening he’s given and throws his knife up at her stomach. Before it can make contact she snatches it from his hand and throws it away in the dark alleyway, her face livid. “Don’t you dare, Slick. I’m not letting you kill our child.”
The silence went on for what seemed like forever until Slick finally spoke up. “Our What.”
“Are you dense? Slick. I’m pregnant and it’s your fault, you backstabbing lying son of a bitch. And I’m-“ This time, it was Spades who cut her off.
“What the hell do you mean you’re pregnant? Toots, just because we slept together doesn’t mean that you’re having my kid. In fact, it’s impossible. Both Dersites and Prospitians are sterile.” That’s what he’d always heard when he was still an archagent. That’s why they had the cloning stations. That’s why everyone looked exactly the same as everyone else, and that’s what kept citizens in check.
She just lets out a laugh, keeping him pinned. “Some of the troops were, but I wasn’t and you aren’t because we are one of a kind, Slick. We aren’t programmed like the rest of society was and therefore we can have children. I was queen, I know these things.” The smile left over from that laugh is quickly fading to something unreadable.
She’s lying. He knows that she is because she always lies, and this was just another way to fuck with him. “Bullshit,” He sneers. Her mouth opens before she yanks his hand towards her stomach, and presses it hard. He doesn’t feel anything. “As I said, bullshit. I ain’t feelin anything, and if I did, you putting on a bit of weight doesn’t mean anything. Not buying it, try again”
“I don’t have time for your bullshit-“
“I don’t have time for yours, toots,”
Another hit, and this time she has taken out a knife of her own, holding it tight to her throat, threatening to let it slip at any second. “Shut it, Slick. It’s more than that. I’ve been ill and you’re the only other Dersite I’ve slept with and Stitch checked me over and told me—“
“Look, I don’t care what a tailor said, he doesn’t know any more than you do. All he does is sew up his dolls, he isn’t a real doctor, and he knows no more about your situation than you claim to know.“ This time she shuts him up with a hand around his throat, squeezing hard and cutting off all air.
A gasp escaped Slick’s mouth before he started to claw at the hand around his throat, slowly prying her off. “I don’t need this right now, I don’t know why I thought this would be a good idea…” She mutters to herself, dropping her head, not realizing he’s gotten enough give to be able to breathe.
After a few deep breaths, a sneer still makes its way across his face, though he’s trapped and in trouble. He opens his mouth and begins to speak, his voice more degrading than his words. “And even if I did knock you up, there’s not a thing I would do about it, other than tear the abomination out of you myself. Face it, no one would want to raise anything with you, you’re good for a one night stand and that’s it.”
She stops, and before long he feels something stabbed deep into his shoulder, and he’s cussing and cursing enough to make a sailor blush when he hears an empty sob, and in an instant, the weight on top of him is gone.
Slick sits up, not bother to look for her because she’s probably long gone. He begins to mutter beneath his breath, brushing himself off and standing up shakily. Crazy bitch. She calls him the liar? Hilarious. Rotating his shoulder, he starts his trek back to the manhole cover where he lives, trying to forget what just happened.
“I need a goddamn cigarette.”
“English is not going to be happy with you,” Stitch grumbled, working on expanding her coat’s waist. This was to be the first of many times, and she was glad that her doctor happened to be a Tailor as well. As little people as possible should know about it, and so fa--r only three did. Her, him, and Slick. She just sat in the corner, smoking her cigarette, staring off into the distance.
“He’ll forgive me.” She said nonchalantly, just staring off into the distance. She was wearing one of the coats that Stitch had been working on- recently Quarters had gotten into a terrible tiff with the Midnight Crew, and the unfinished coat was enough to cover her while she watched Stitch work on hers. She wasn’t really paying attention, but it was something to concentrate on other than the constant sickness she was feeling.
“And what will the rest of the gang think? Do you even know who the father is?” He pulled out a seam ripper and takes the thread out, careful not to rip the fabric itself. “Your promiscuity is getting us into heaps of trouble.” There had been rumors floating around the house of her sleeping with other members of the Felt, but at the moment that’s all Stitch knew. Rumors. Most of them were probably just fantasies that they had, confessing them while they were piss drunk.
“I don’t need you to tell me what to do. You’re just my doctor, Stitch. I can handle myself.”
Anyone else and any other time she would have taken out her lash to teach him a lesson. But not now, not with the person who promised to keep her secret. “I can just disappear once it gets noticeable, and come back when the whole ordeal is over,” She said coolly, taking a drag from her cigarette.
“Put that damn thing out, woman. You’ll stink up my clothing.”
“No. I’m saying this both because I’m annoyed and that it’s dangerous for you,” He tugged at the edges, pulling the fabric out and pinning it with the pins he had at the ready hanging from his mouth. “You are already in a high-risk job, and you could injure yourself and the kid if you keep smoking like that.” Those words sank in. The kid. Like a title. She preferred to call it, “the problem”, or just “it”. Calling it that was… too real. It’s not like pretending that it wasn’t there would wish it away though.
“I don’t care about it though,” she explained, putting out the cigarette anyway. “I would prefer for it to die.”
It was making her miserable already, the thing growing inside of her. She’d been waking up early just to be sick, pacing around the house grumbling to herself and snapping at others- more than usual, and worst of all was what Slick said. She was the queen, dammit, and he should be treating her like one, not saying such horrid things to her face as if she were like any of the other riffraff littering the streets. She would make him pay.
“You could kill yourself, and I’m not letting the universe end because you didn’t want to have some bastard child.” He took out his scissors and carefully cut the final thread. She watched as her coat turned to pieces, but trusted him to put it back together. “So whose is it? Itchy?”
She stopped and turned towards the tailor, a look of disbelief mixed with indignity on her face. “Itchy? He is the LAST person I would ever even consider doing that with.” A pause. “Well, not the last but he’s pretty far down there.”
“Well that’s what he’s been implying for the longest time, and you never refuted it,” Stitch continued, taking out a spool of thread and carefully pushing thread through the eye of the needle.
“I didn’t think I needed to,” A frown, and an itch for a cigarette. “Besides, there is no way it could be anyone’s here,” He turned his head, as if to question what she just said when Snowman stood up and walked across the room over to him and took the Tailor’s hand. “Didn’t you notice that we are completely different?” Her carapace shone in the dim light against Stitch’s discolored skin
The man cleared his throat. “Well… that narrows it down. Are you saying that you don’t know who the father is?”
“I never said that,” She walked away and took her place back on the counter.
“Is it somebody we know?”
She chose not to respond to that.
He groaned, pressing his needle through the fabric and looping it around. “English is not going to be happy with you.”
He’s still sore as fuck the next time he sees her, though the bruises had healed she must have torn something in his neck, and he was irritable as hell since he started trying to give up cigarettes. The things were fuckin’ bad for you. Didn’t help that Droog didn’t give a shit and just let the smoke fill up the base. He needed some space. And that space was the patio of a hole in the wall bar, even if there were still people smoking. At least the slight breeze helped his recovering lungs from getting assaulted from the secondhand smoke, and he could manage as long as he stayed near the ledge
When Snowman phased in next to him he nearly choked on his drink, sputtering it out onto the pavement. She just remained silent as he coughed up the rest, clearly not expecting her to pop out of nowhere. “What the hell are y’ doing?” He turns gritting his teeth and refraining from breathing, knowing that the second he looked at her she’d puff out a cloud into his face.
“Can’t I go somewhere to drink too?” She has a small glass in her hand, and the cigarette holder is missing. He mutters and sets his drink on the railing.
“Look, are we gon’ have to start something?” He pulls out his deck and begins to shuffle the cards as a warning.
“Not here,” She replies simply. She didn’t want to start a scene, he thinks. As long as she doesn’t make him, he won’t. But if she does, he’ll show her what a scene really looks like. He notices that her fingers are jittering around. She’s tapping them and scratching against the wood with her index finger and she probably doesn’t even know that she’s doing it. Then he gets it.
“You’re trying to quit?” He asks. She nods. “Now why the hell would you do that? You never cared about your health before, or do you finally feel guilty knowing that you’re shortening the universe’s life with those?”
“I’m not allowed or I’ll kill it or both of us,” She replies simply, and downs her drink, eyes squeezing shut- it must have been bitter.
“How the hell will that kill me?”
She turns her head and squints, looking offended. “Not you. I couldn’t care less about you, asshole.” He raises an eyebrow, wondering what she was doing and not realizing until she places her hand over her stomach.
“Not this bullshit again, Look, you-“ Before he can finish a hand is thrown out and slaps him hard, and the rest of his drink goes tumbling to the ground. There is a moment of silence before he grimaces. “Oh, you bitch,” He growls and takes out his horse hitcher, swinging it towards her before she catches it, pulling him close to her. She looks back at the bar patrons who are staring at the pair by now and speaks to him in a strained whisper.
“Not here, Slick. Control your temper for once in your life,”” She takes his tie in her hand and keeps him next to her.
A knife is pulled out and she knocks that to the ground, and before he can do anything else she takes his hand and presses it against her abdomen again, as if there was something growing inside of her body- she looked just as slender as the night he’d--
“Oh my god,” His hand shoots back towards his body as if he’d touched hot iron. That was not just weight gain. He wipes his hand on his pant leg, like he touched something dirty, looking absolutely horrified. She has a nearly smug grimace on her face and crosses her arms. She knew that she didn’t have to say that she told him so.
Slick turns to leave. Before he can get too far he shouts out as Snowman’s arms snake around his back, one hand covering his mouth. He opens his mouth and bites down on her hand, but that doesn’t stop her from using those time powers of hers to phase away somewhere else. Somewhere more private and more green.
They had to talk.
(sorry, small update. School is kicking my ass)
Her arms still had an iron grip on him as they appeared inside of her room, safe from everyone else's stares.
"Why the hell is it still living inside ya?" He snarled the second that he found himself inside of the gaudy green mansion. She had her lance out and was at the ready to impale him if needed, but she kept her ground. "Why would you let some unholy abomination live in you like a parasite, feeding off whatever black liquid is pumping through your veins?" He continued, taking out his Ace of Spades and flipping the Horse Hitcher into his hands.
"Parasite? That's a real elegant thing to call your child, Slick."
"Your child, bitch." He corrects her, gripping his weapon hard. "Just because its growing in your gut because I fucked you doesn't mean that belongs to m- FUCK" The lance struck him across the face, sending him tumbling to the ground. He fucking hated that she had a bigger range than he did and if he could get away with it he would love to shoot her. But he couldn't, so he had to stay on the defensive.
He hated staying on the defensive. Currently he just wanted to bludgeon her stomach until anything trying to live inside would be dead, and he couldn't do that while being on the defensive.
She couldn't help but smirk. She could tell that he was going through the same shit she was going through two months ago, and he was handling it much worse than she did, even though he wasn't the one who had to deal with it. His arms were shaking as they gripped the horse-hitcher and he was at a loss. She watched on with amusement until he smashed the weapon into her vanity, splinters and glass flying up into the air. Snowman opened her mouth to yell at him when he took another hit to the wood, and the vanity collapsed into two pieces, the drawers falling open onto the ground. Before he could take another hit she snapped her black inches onto his hand, and he dropped the weapon and recoiled. Before he could react anymore she appeared behind him and wrapped her hand around his throat and took a wrist with the other one.
"Now listen here, Slick, I didn't bring you here to get into a fight with you. I'm trying to tell you that even with all this I'm going to kee-" her words were cut off when a knife plunged into her side, though she caught it before it went too deep. Gasping, she snaps his wrist, causing him to hiss in pain as the knife clattered to the floor. He stared at her, looking enthralled at what he just did, with a mixture of horror.
While he's distracted by the blood leaking from her side, Snowman flips her cigarette holder and throws Slick to the side with the blunt end of her lance. He topples over onto the ground, swearing loudly, and she feels a sting over the wound zigzagging, and closes her eyes.
Slick just laughs before she pulls out her gun and points it right between his eyes. The crazed look on his face freezes, as if he were caught in the spotlight and blinded. She walks around the broken vanity and corners him, cocking the pistol. "Why shoot me? What point is there anymore? It's dead, it's no problem anymore. Y' should be thanking me for getting rid of it." Snowman laughs bitterly, and before he can ask why she opens up her jacket, revealing a stitched up hole.
"Our doctor has been watching me carefully, Slick." She says, before stepping forward, one foot pressing it's weight down between the man's legs. She can feel how his body just freezes up as her heel presses into him, and he knows that one stomp and he will have no further future heirs ever. "Now listen here, and listen good. You might be proud of that little stunt you just pulled, but I'm not impressed." The gun turns to the side. "I'm keeping the kid."
"You're WH-" He was gut off by a bit a pressure pressing down on his groin, and he held his tongue.
"And there is nothing you can do about it. You said it's not your problem, fine. Then I'm taking care of it myself." Her voice was cold and lacked emotion. It was obvious that she'd been thinking this over in her head for ages, and this was the conclusion she came upon. "I don't expect nor want you to ever see it, got it, Slick?"
He growled in reply, but the foot on him kept him from giving any inappropriate remarks. She moved the heel, but kept the gun pointed at him as he stood up. Swallowing, the man brushed his coat off, and just stared at her stomach. There was a long moment of silence as the two just stood there, and Slick finally spoke up.
Her cold expression melted for a moment.
"I don't know," she says, and steps back, pointing at the door. "Get out, and stay out. When I say I don't want to see you again, I mean it this time." He stalks out the door, closing it quietly behind him.
He didn't return to the base until a few days later, covered in bruises. When Droog asked where they came from, Slick just told him that he had a run-in with Sawbuck, and that was at least half-true.
It wasn't until now that Slick pondered the usefulness of his comrades when it came to discussing personal matters. Especially personal matters of this form and this magnitude. He had a total of three people he could trust this matter to, and he couldn't trust it to a single one of them. It was a dumb as hell idea to even consider telling them, but he felt that he could get even further off his game if he allowed himself to be distracted by this… very large thorn in his side. A thorn that wouldn't go away and just get longer and deeper until it pierced all the way through and got him murdered. And when you're part of the elite Midnight Crew, let's just say you have to be careful who you speak to.
Deuce was a no. He is too immature to understand what sort of problem this is and would instead start cooing about child names and ask him if he and Snowman were in love. He didn't particularly want to murder him that night, so he felt it best to not let him be privy to this information. Boxcars was another disaster waiting to happen. He would pry into his love life further than he'd ever pried into a safe with those gigantic arms of his. And if he gave Boxcars unfavorable answers… that would just make things worse. He had to keep his crew cohesive and working together. Having one member dead and another hell bent on killing you was not the way to do that.
It didn't make his final choice look any sweeter though.
He shut the door behind him, and locked the door as Droog straightened himself up on his bed. "I am reading," He said deliberately, taking a sip from his glass. Slick noted the grey women on the page, but he was already in here and he didn't know how much longer it would be before he had a momentary lapse of sanity. Sighing, Droog folded up the paper and placed it on the bedside table, sitting himself all the way up. Noting how irate he looked, Slick was cautious when he sat on the edge of the bed, Droog studying him carefully. There was a long moment of silence before Droog finally spoke up. "Well?"
"Whats goin' on?" It was an automatic reaction, but an idiotic one.
Droog wasn't amused. "I was having some alone time, but it looks like that isn't' happening. Now you are the one who came into my room unannounced, so you'd better have a damn good explanation as to why or I'll see that you don't leave in one piece,"
Usually Slick would punish Droog for such lip. But then again, usually he'd leave him alone when he was getting ready to jerk one out.
"It wasn't even my fucking fault," Slick blurted. Droog quirked an eyebrow and opened his mouth to speak but was interrupted by Slick, who continued to rant. "I mean it was just one fucking time and I'm sure that there have been plenty of other people who could have done this to her, but no she insists that it has to be me. She won't even kill the damn thing even though it's retarded to let it live so not only is she a bitch but she's retarded as hell!"
Droog took another sip from his glass. "What the fuck are you blithering about, Slick," he says calmly.
Somehow, at that instant a stupid idea became a hundred times stupider. It took all of Slick's mental capacity to get the next words out without murdering himself right there on Droog's bed. "I slept with Sno-"
"We know," Droog interrupted, exasperated.
Slick's jaw hung for a second before he gets a hold of himself. "Well how the ff… She's having a kid,"
The other's composure dropped instantaneously as he coughed into his glass. He quickly set it down on the nightstand before he doubled over the side of the bed. It took Slick a second before he realized that Droog was silently laughing, his mouth cracked into the widest grin he could manage, only making the slightest of wheezes as he broke into hysterics. "Oh god this is too rich," He managed to get out before his laughter becomes wild.
"Wh- hey, fuck you!" Slick growled. He was expecting some sort of response, but it wasn't this. When Droog just ignores him Slick pulls out his blade. At the "Snikt" the laughter stopped and in an instant Slick found himself pinned to the bed under the cue stick. There was a reason Droog was his right hand man, but it didn't mean that he liked being caught on his bad side. "Fuck you, piece of shit!" He snarled, struggling a bit.
"You came into my room and interrupted my time, I can do what I want," Droog grinned, just barely budging when Slick attempted to fling him off. "Now, you're telling me that you got Snowman pregnant?" He chuckled. "You gonna settle down and have a family? Maybe you should get a dog too, a little terrier for you to--"
"FUCK OFF!" He snarled again, kicking out his legs. "I didn't come here for none of your ridiculing, but it looks like that ain't happening!" He twisted beneath Droog's grip.
"So you came to me to ask for names?"
"No I came to you because I have no idea what the fuck I'm supposed to do because a little gremlin is going to be running around and it's going to be my responsibility to take care of it because it's my fault that the little shit exists and Snowman won't get rid of it for some reason that I can't fathom, and I don't want to have something I made run around and become one of those green bastards!" Slick spoke in a flurry, ignoring the way Droog's eyebrow slowly ascended. "If I try to kill it myself then the bitch might die and then we're all fucked!" He didn't notice that during the entire rant the door had slowly opened, and a small Dersite's head poked out.
"What's happening?" Deuce spoke, his voice so quiet the two almost didn't hear him.
"Get the fuck out Deuce! This doesn't concern you!" Slick snarled, landing a rough kick to Droog's stomach. Droog wheezed and his grip loosened just enough for Slick to get his hand away and punch him in the face. He reeled back and Slick takes this opportunity to roll him over so he's on top. A laugh escaped his teeth and Deuce turns around.
"Whas goin on?" Boxcars said. Fucking wonderful. All he needed now was for the felt to show up and then the gang's all here for this.
"Droog and Slick are wrestling on the bed." Deuce explained, looking out the door towards wherever Boxcars presumably was.
The larger man started to say something about how Deuce should leave them alone and shut the door for now. When he came up to shoo Deuce away from the door he sneaks a glance in and his expression sours a bit. "You two are fightin'," He groaned. Droog struggled a bit beneath Slick's grip, trying to get free.
"Of course we were what the hell did you th--"
Droog interrupts. "Slick knocked up Snowman,"
Boxcars watched as Slick began to beat Droog, but judging by the shit-eating grin on his face, it was worth it. And Slick's reaction made it quite clear that Droog was telling the truth. "Y' did what now?" He said lowly, opening the door all the way. Deuce just stayed near the doorway waiting, trying to see if he could understand what all was going on before interjecting himself into the conversation. "Of all the-"
"Fuck you! Fuck you I get it I'm paying for it!" Slick growled, his fist planted firmly against Droog's cheek. He let out another stream of loud curses when he heard Droog try to add his own perspective to the story. The yelling successfully drowned whatever smart thing Droog wanted to interject out. "Yes it was stupid, yes I didn't take her out to dinner beforehand you fat bastard, yes it was due to my carelessness," He punctuated every point with another Strike to Droog's face. Droog decided that enough was enough and flipped Slick off the bed onto the floor. Slick landed on the ground with a loud thump, cursing a bit when he head hits the floor. Luckily his carapace didn't break, but that didn't stop it from hurting like a bitch.
"I don't get it," Deuce spoke up, looking at Droog, since he seemed to have the handle on the situation.
Droog chuckled, rolling to the other side of the bed, feeling safer with Boxcars and a bed between he and Slick. "It means that the boss here is the father of Snowman's unborn kid, and pretty soon an abomination bearing both her and his blood is going to be plaguing our streets,"
"Don't talk about him like that!" Slick snarled, standing up and staring at Droog.
Droog's brow raised, but it was Deuce who talked. "It's a boy?"
"A' course it's a boy, there's no way I'd make a sissy little girl," Slick reasoned, crossing his arms. "An' just because I say things don't mean you get to talk shit about my flesh and blood," He pointed at Droog, who attempted to look innocent. Or at least as innocent as the bastard could look.
"Does that mean we're getting another member of the Crew?" Deuce asked, but it was more hypothetical than anything. "But we already got all of the cards filled up, he wouldn't fit…" Deuce holds a hand to his mouth.
Boxcars decided to take this opportunity to speak. "Jus' because you don' like her doesn't mean that you can dump this on her. She's scared and alone and is going to have to take care of a kid without a father figure there to teach him right from wrong an' how to wax his carapace and tie a tie,"
Slick's head began to throb. He was really starting to hate that he quit smoking. "This is Snowman we're talking about, not some bimbo found in a bar. Besides, she has the idiot mold brigade to teach him to do all that stuff-"
"Don't you realize that's a huge problem?" Droog interjected. The other two stared at him. "What you just said. You just gave the felt another member for free. One that has everything the bitch has, maybe even that universe destroying one, plus from Slick he'll have…" A pause. "Well he'll be a little shorter than average at least,"
"Slick," Droog's voice carried a warning with it. "This isn't your and the bitch's problem anymore. This is ours. You're going to go up there and kill that kid,"
"I can't" Slick replied automatically.
"Yeah! It's his baby an' he can't mistreat a lady like it, whether it be the former Queen or not!" Boxcars said. "Gotta treat her and her decision to keep it with respect!"
"Nah, it ain't that. The chances of me killin' the baby and keeping her alive are slim to none." He explained, and Boxcars frowned at him.
"Then you have to take it away from her. Simple as that. We can't have another member of the Felt, no matter what. Is that clear?"
Slick did not like being bossed around by Droog, but he was right. Slick didn't say anything, though. Boxcars cut in, "So it's settled. We're gonna get you over there around the time she's haven the kid an' kidnapping it. An' then you can apologize to Miss Snowman," Boxcars's hand clamps down on Slick's shoulder, holding onto it while his boss struggled to shrug his way out of it.
His crew was looking at him, and he knew they were right, no matter how little he wanted to admit it. There was a reason he kept them around, after all. "Alrigh'" He growled out beneath his breath, making his way towards the door.
He was about to close the door when he heard Deuce's voice cry out, "He could be the Joker!"
As Deuce looked around in excitement, Slick slammed the door behind him. It was going to be a long year.