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Burning House

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His grin was sadistic, confident, cold. It held no echo of the familiar, warm smile Dipper was accustomed to. Dipper felt tears trailing down his dirtied, scratched, and bruised cheeks. He should have expected this. He’d known the demon’s true nature the entire time. He’d known he’d had some sort of sinister plot, some sort of huge diabolical plan, but Dipper had let his feelings get the better of him. He’d let Bill convince him with honeyed words he should have known were too good to be true.

And the worst part?

Dipper knew this was all an act.

His cocky leer, holding his family at glowing, laser finger-point, threatening their lives, his brutal apathy – all of it was a facade because he was scared- no, he knew that after what he’d done, Dipper wouldn’t stay with him. They were the desperate measures of a frantic man (demon) on the brink of losing his lover. Bill loved Dipper, and they both knew it. They also both knew that Bill would never admit to any of his weaknesses or abandon his plans, meaning that he would go through with his threats. Which brought them to this point.

Seven years after they met during Dipper’s first summer in Gravity Falls, now in the midst of an apocalypse brought upon the town by the demon himself, who was anxiously (no matter how collected he looked) awaiting Dipper’s response to the offer he’d made him.

“Well,” Bill prompted, “Do we have a deal or not, kid? Give yourself to me, body, mind, and soul, let me find the way to break the barrier around this hick town in that pretty little head of yours, and I’ll spare them. You’ll get to spend eternity with me, and they’ll be safe for the rest of their lives.”

Dipper didn’t bother to wipe away his tears; he knew it hurt the demon to see them, and he was feeling understandably bitter and relished the small jab the action – or lack thereof – made at the other. He looked from Bill’s face, to the blue fire of his burning hand, and to his loved ones. Most of them were staring at him in anguish, shaking their heads, or both. Though Ford’s gaze was melancholy, almost sympathetic, and he lifted his right hand to pat the area of his chest just over his heart, giving Dipper a slight nod once he caught the teen’s eye. Dipper bit his lip and lowered his eyes to the floor. He took a shuddering breath before straightening with determination, taking the demon’s hand and shaking it firmly, even as a new wave of tears flooded his eyes and spilled over. “Deal,” he confirmed softly and cleared his mind in preparation.

Bill’s face lit up, and Dipper’s heart ached at the sight. “Alrighty, Pine Tree, I promise this won’t hurt a bit!” The blond declared happily, slipping out of his human form and becoming a transparent outline of his triangular demon form before diving straight into Dipper’s head.

The next moment, Dipper found himself in his mindscape, standing in his room in the attic of the Mystery Shack.

Bill appeared in front of him in his human form. He glanced around curiously, “So, where do ya keep that equation, Pine Tree?”

Dipper didn’t say anything, instead stepping forward to take the demon into his arms.

Bill’s confusion was evident when he hesitated before hugging back. He pressed a small kiss to the side of the teen’s head. “Alright, kid, I missed you too, but it’d be even better if we did this when I get back in my own body.”

Dipper's only response was holding Bill tighter.

"Pine Tree?" Bill's tone was slightly worried.

Dipper buried his face in Bill's neck.

"What are you-" Bill stiffened in the human's hold; Dipper felt his mind beginning to go fuzzy, and he knew Ford had gone through with the plan. "Pine Tree!?"

Dipper felt more tears springing from his closed eyelids. "I'm sorry," he muttered softly into Bill's neck.

"Dipper, what did you do?!"

I had a dream about a burning house
You were stuck inside
I couldn't get you out
I lay beside you and pulled you close
And the two of us went up in smoke

Blue flames began licking at the entrances of the room, slowly engulfing them and moving on to eat at the walls. Dipper began walking backwards toward his bed, meeting no resistance as he pulled the demon with him. "I think we both knew how this would end," Dipper murmured into his boyfriend's neck. He maneuvered both of their bodies to lay on the bed, keeping his face in Bill's neck as much as he could, wanting to stay in his embrace as long as possible. "I knew you had some sort of 'evil plan', and you knew I wouldn't let you go through with it. It's our own faults for getting attached, really." He pulled back just enough to look the demon in the eye. Both males were crying as Dipper continued, "This wouldn't hurt as much if we hadn't let ourselves fall in love." He laughed sardonically and cupped Bill's cheek, wiping away a tear with his thumb. "At least we're going down together."

Love isn't all that it seems
I did you wrong
I'll stay here with you
Until this dream is gone

"Ford never actually told me the equation, probably never trusted me enough or something along those lines – you really did a number on his mental health, y'know that? The original backup plan if the wheel didn't work was for Stan and Ford to pretend to be each other, and you would make a deal with Stan, who you would supposedly think was Ford, to get the equation, then Ford would erase Stan's mind – and, by extension, you." Dipper carded his fingers through Bill's soft, blond locks as he spoke. Bill's expression couldn't seem to shift from being positively stricken. "I managed to overhear and convince them that it would be better if I made the deal with you. After all, you had more of a reason to want me, the risk of you figuring out that it wasn't Ford wouldn't be there, and I'm pretty sure Ford low-key hates me for associating with you at all."

I've been sleepwalking
Been wondering all night
Trying to take what's lost and broke
And make it right
I've been sleepwalking
Too close to the fire
But it's the only place that I can hold you tight
In this burning house

Bill’s lower lip wobbled, and the next second his face was pressed into the crook of Dipper’s neck, his tears wetting Dipper’s shirt collar. All he could muster was a strained, muffled, “Why?”

Dipper knew he wasn’t asking why Ford would hate him for that. Kissing the demon’s forehead, he explained, “I’m human. You’re a demon. I want peace. You want chaos. It’s just in our nature. Not even falling in love could change that. But I’ve fallen for you too hard to make it out unscathed if I lose you. Without you, I don’t know if I could go on. Even if you are a demon hell-bent on causing Armageddon.” He laughed dryly.

This time, Bill was the one who tightened his grip, bunching up handfuls of the back of Dipper’s shirt in his fists.

“Remember when I broke into the Fearamid to rescue Ford?” Dipper asked after a moment.

“Of course- of course I do…” Bill replied softly, sniffling between words. “That was the second time I offered you a chance to join me, and the second time you refused.”

I see you at a party and you look the same
I could take you back
But people don't really change
Wish that we could go back in time
I'd be the one you thought you'd find

Dipper huffed out a laugh through his nose. “You have no idea how much I wanted to accept.” He let his eyes fall closed as he went on. “I would love to be with you forever. But I had to think realistically. We’re polar opposites, Bill. Chaos is to you as order is to me, and neither of us has changed in the seven years we’ve known each other. It’s unlikely we ever would have changed. Chaos and order cannot coexist equally. I realized that as soon as I saw you up there on that throne of stone townspeople. You were in your element – surrounded by pure chaos. You were having the time of your life, but everyone I knew was suffering.” Dipper took a deep breath. “… I keep thinking that maybe if I’d done something differently back before Weirdmageddon – if I’d somehow managed to get you to care more for me than causing chaos – then maybe… maybe we wouldn’t… w-we wouldn’t be…”

Love isn't all that it seems
I did you wrong
I'll stay here with you
Till this dream is gone

Both males clutched each other as tightly as they could, crying silently and attempting to block out the whooshing sounds of the flames around them creeping ever closer.

I've been sleepwalking
Been wondering all night
Trying to take what's lost and broke
And make it right
I've been sleepwalking
Too close to the fire
But it's the only place that I can hold you tight
In this burning house

“T-this isn’t what I planned.” Bill sobbed. “You were- w-we were… I wanted to rule o-over your dimension, but I wanted to h-have you by my side! We w-were going to r-rule to-gether! It w-asn’t supposed to end like this!” He bawled openly, heaving sobs shaking his human form, until he’d worn himself out, and his tears once again silently wet Dipper’s shirt.

Dipper rubbed soothing circles on Bill’s back as he cried, comforting his boyfriend in the only way he could in that moment.

Flames are getting bigger now
In this burning house
I can hold on to you somehow
In this burning house
Oh and I don't wanna wake up
In this burning house

Dipper opened his eyes, regretting the decision half a second later as he saw the blue fire directly behind Bill. He forced himself to focus on Bill’s face. On the large, fearful, golden eyes staring right into his brown pair. On the soft lips that forcefully captured his a moment later. On the passionate last kiss he would probably ever share with his lover.

Suddenly, Bill seemed to have been yanked from Dipper's grasp, and the brunet's eyes flew wide open in shock.

Bill was now floating next to the bed as he appeared to glitch. He stared at himself in horror, shouting, “What’s happening to me?!” With every glitch that ravaged him, his body took on some grotesque and/or abstract new shape, and he writhed in agony.

Dipper couldn't take it when Bill started screaming and subconsciously folded in on himself, squeezing his eyes shut tightly and covering his ears with his hands as an apparently endless waterfall of tears rolled down his face.

Even through his hands, Dipper could hear when Bill's screaming turned into more complex gibberish. “NRUTER YAM I TAHT REWOP TNEICNA EHT EKOVNI I! NRUB OT EMOC SAH EMIT YM! L T O L O X AAAAAAAAH!”

Dipper felt something brush against his arm. He had a feeling it was Bill's hand.

“DIPPER!” The demon cried. This word being the only discernible one Dipper had heard since he'd covered his ears shocked him into opening his eyes once again, just in time to see an odd mixture of Bill's human and demon forms reaching out to him desperately, and he didn't have any time to react before Bill disintegrated before his eyes.

And I been sleepwalking
Been wandering all night
Trying to take what's lost and broke
And make it right
I've been sleep walking
Too close to the fire
But it's the only place that I can hold you tight
In this burning house

The last thing Dipper felt was a final tear slipping down his cheek, and then he was gone too.