There is indignant croaking coming from the bottom of Spencer’s bag. “Shut up!” Spencer hisses, not for the first time tonight. “Do you want us to get kicked out again?”
“Ribbit,” Ryan says sullenly, but then goes quiet, thank fuck.
They make it past the doorman without issue (and you can thank Spencer’s A+ dress sense, and to hell with your doubting toad looks, Ryan). Inside, it’s Karaoke night. Usually, this would be just behind Furry conventions and My Little Pony showings on the list of things Spencer would like to avoid that Ryan dragged him into anyway.
The girl on stage is sobbing through Total Eclipse of the Heart. Spencer digs the cardboard box that Ryan inhabits out of his bag and settles in to wait.
The next guy to leap on stage, though, is singing–
“You’re fucking kidding me,” Spencer says, faint,
Go the Distance from Hercules. Disney’s Hercules. Adding insult to injury, he’s not bad. Spencer feels betrayed by the universe: it’s a law of physics that nobody who comes up at karaoke nights is any good.
He’s also not bad looking, if you like them tiny, hyper and bootilicious.
“What do you think?” Spencer asks Ryan once the song is done.
Ryan lets out a single, despairing croak.
“I know, buddy.” Spencer pats the top of the box. “Still, it’s worth a try.” He takes Ryan’s resulting silence as assent.
The guy hops off the stage and goes directly to the DJ station to ask for another song application, then hits the bathrooms. Perfect. Spencer follows.
“Excuse me,” Spencer says, “could I talk to you for a sec?”
The guy turns around, his shoulders nearly touching his ears, that’s how tense he looks. “If it’s about the good news,” he says, “I’ve heard them already. Waaaay too many times.”
“What?” Spencer brushes that off as immaterial. “Look, do you want to take a chance at being a real life prince charming?”
The guy’s shoulders relax fractionally, and he says, “I think I saw this in an afterschool special once.” He’s giving Spencer intrigued looks, though, lingering on his hips.
He really is pretty, up close, and Spencer’s life is shitty and unfair. “My friend and I need help,” he says, opening up Ryan’s box. “I’m Spencer, this,” he indicates the toad, “is Ryan.”
The guy’s eyes go huge. “Whoa.” He reaches out to touch Ryan, shying just short of making contact.
“And you are…” Spencer prompts.
“Oh!” He snaps upright. “Brendon Urie, at your service.” He offers his hand to Spencer, who refuses to be charmed by the utter dorkiness on display. He’s best friends with Ryan; you’d think he’d be immune.
Then again, he’s not exactly immune to Ryan, either. Spencer tamps thought that down ruthlessly. “So, Brendon, Ryan got targeted by a witch.”
“Ribbit,” Ryan says, and Spencer has known him for long enough that he knows that’s toad for “If she didn’t want me to criticize her fashion sense, she should not have been wearing Uggs.” Being a toad has done wonders for Ryan’s laconicness.
“And now, regardless of whose fault that was, Ryan, he needs to be turned back.”
Brendon actually claps his hands with glee. His eyes have little starry twinkles in them: in the dirty bar bathroom, he looks like a gritty-realistic rendition of a childhood cartoon. “You need a kiss from a prince!”
“She didn’t actually specify,” Spencer says, for completeness’ sake. “We just figured out that was the solution.”
“Of course I’ll kiss you,” Brendon says, and bends over to kiss Ryan.
Spencer holds his breath.
When Spencer’s lungs begin to burn, Ryan croaks.
“Maybe it needs time,” Spencer says, hopeless.
Brendon’s got a scheming look in his eyes. “Maaaybe,” he says, narrowing his eyes at Spencer, “what he needs is his One True Love’s kiss.” He manages to make the words sound capitalized. Spencer is a little impressed despite himself. “And I don’t know about you, but hauling around a frog and trying to get people to kiss it sounds a lot like something you’d do out of true love.”
“Toad,” Spencer corrects him. When Brendon just keeps staring at him, expectant, Spencer sighs and says, “That was the first thing we tried. C'mon, do you think we’re dumb?”
Brendon ignores this frankly golden opportunity in favor of saying, “Hmm,” and then, “Let’s try this, then.” He sidles over until he’s cheek to cheek with Spencer. “Ryan? Can you hop around?”
Ryan hops around to face them while giving off the impression this is all completely beneath his dignity. Spencer can sympathize.
“And now,” Brendon says, his hand behind Spencer’s head forcing him to move along, “we kiss.”
Ryan is slimy against Spencer’s lips, just like he was before. But that’s only for the first moment. Then he’s too heavy to keep holding him up, and Spencer has just the presence of mind to try and control how fast his hand - and Ryan, who is regaining human shape fast - fall.
“Ow,” is the next thing Ryan says, and he glares daggers at Spencer. “You couldn’t have put me on the ground first?”
“Sorry,” Spencer says with a huge sweet smile, “did I turn you human again wrong?” He turns to Brendon and says, “This is actually him in a good mood.”
Brendon shrugs. “It’s called The Frog Prince, not The Frog with Fantastic Personality and Sweet Disposition.”
“Toad,” Spencer corrects once more, and Ryan says, “I can hear you.”
“Yes. It’s mutual.” He gives Ryan a hand up.
“Um.” Brendon fidgets. “Won’t he need, like, clothes?”
Spencer rolls his eyes and produces an outfit from his backpack. Ryan shows some appreciation, at least, by only making minor grumbles about Spencer’s fashion choices as he puts it on.
They turn to leave, and Spencer takes a few steps before realizing they’re missing someone. “Hey, Brendon. You coming?”
Brendon has his hands awkwardly jammed in his jeans pockets. “Nah. I figure, like, I supplied the prince, you supplied the true love, together we were awesome!” He does jazz hands. Real, actual jazz hands.
It is Spencer’s fate to be involved with utter dorks. He should probably accept it gracefully. “This is too stupid to argue about. Come on, you’ll miss your next song.”
That, at least, works to get Brendon out of the bathroom. Spencer catches Ryan’s eye, and his silent nod in return. They move to flank Brendon as he tries to sit down.
“What are you doing?” Brendon says, pulling a thread out of his sleeve and scrinching it all to heck.
“Acclimating you,” Ryan says, blandly as ever. “What are you singing next?”
By the third song and the fifth beer, Brendon has stopped trying to shove them away in favor of attempting to climb both their laps simultaneously. Spencer flashes Ryan a thumb up.
“I like you, Ryan Ross and Spencer Smith,” Brendon slurs. “You’remagic.”
Spencer lifts an eyebrow: Ryan just shrugs and says, “It’s about fucking time somebody noticed.”