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Naughty Boys

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Disclaimer: the characters don't belong to me.

Beta: Purple-Shamrock17

"So this weirdo is going to visit us today again?" said George Llewelyn-Davies with reluctance. The oldest of the Llewelyn-Davies boys winced at the very thought of their mother's friend coming to their house again. But he had to pretend before others, like his siblings did, that he liked this creepy man, putting a good face on a bad business. Only in moments like this one, in his brothers only circle, the mask he usually wore could slip down a bit.

"Yes, Mother said he'd be here today," added Peter, George's younger brother before taking a look at Michael who was the youngest of the boys. He was sitting in a corner, innocently playing with his toys. The one he was holding now, oblivious to the talk between his brothers, was a small ragdoll presenting a boy dressed in green. Peter Pan was who the doll presented. It was their mother who had sewn it, following the hints given to her by Mr. Barrie, the creator of the magical boy who could fly. There were also the dolls of Tinkerbell and Wendy made by her but except for little Michael, none of the boys, even young Peter, wanted to play with them. Tinkerbell and Wendy Darling were girls, after all, girls' toys and they were men – well, very young men but still. And men don't play with girls' toys, that's dumb. Maybe except when Mr. Barrie was around. It could turn out practical to pretend before Mother's famous friend that they liked his Peter Pan stories and himself. Really practical. Even Peter, though only seven, already knew it.

"He will be telling us all the same, boring stories like always," said George, wrinkling his nose. "I swear, every time I'm listening to those creepy stories of this nutso on Peter Pan, I feel like screaming on the top of my lungs."

"He really seems to think Mother likes him," interrupted Jack. "Otherwise, she wouldn't want us to be nice to him and she wouldn't be nice to him herself, that's what he thinks". His brothers, except for young Michael, still playing with his Peter Pan doll in the corner, nodded.

"Barrie is a nutso," said Peter, repeating after George, like he was tasting this word on his tongue. It seemed to have a bad flavor on it, because the boy winced, like his oldest brother did a moment ago, and poked his tongue out.

"Don't make such faces because it's going to remain like this forever," warned him Jack in a sneering voice. "You will look weird. Yes, you will be a weirdo for the rest of your life. A weirdo… like Barrie". The boys burst into laughter. If someone heard them at this moment, they would never have thought that those amused circle was discussing something that cruel.

"He isn't like any other adult," added George in pensiveness. "He imagines that he is young like us, I think, but he's only ridiculous and everybody knows it. Except himself. He can't reconcile himself to that the time of his youth is over. Actually, the story on Peter Pan and this whole Neverland thing wouldn't be that bad, if he didn't tell it over and over!" The boy mused.

"Last time he told me about David, his brother," said young Peter. "He died when he was a boy a couple of years older than us."

"Yes, he told us about him too," replied George. "Last week, when he took Michael and me to the park. All the same boring Neverland and Lost Boys talk. I pretended to listen to him but I wanted to scream. He based Peter Pan on David."

"But Peter has my name," protested his younger brother, beaming with pride. "Mine and no one else's. You gave your name to Wendy's father and John and Michael to her brothers".

"And this is why we should be nice to him," Jack declared. "Not only not to hurt his feelings, not to pretend like everybody else does that he isn't a nutso behaving like a child. If we are nice for him, maybe he'll put us in his other books. We will be famous. I want to be famous, don't you?"

"I want to be famous too," said Peter. "And I like being in this play of his. The boy has my name. It was me who told him he should have this name, he wanted to name him David, after his brother, but I told him I'd like him to be named after myself. And he agreed," ended the boy, showing all his pretty white teeth in a wide, malicious smile. "I want him to write more books about boys with names like ours. I don't like reading too much but this is what I would like to read. So let's be nice for him and maybe he'll do it once more."

"I just will be nice for him because he can make over all his money to us. He has no children on his own so he can do it," said George.

"Oh, look, he's coming!" exclaimed Peter, pointing at the window behind the transparent plate of which, showed a silhouette of Mr. Barrie. The boys stood up to greet him, as he was coming in the living room, smiling warmly at them, to which the children answered with their smiles, expressing friendliness and kindness towards him. The man smiled and tousled George's hair, as he sat on the couch and pulled the newest chapter of Peter Pan out of his pocket to read it to them. The idea for it came to him as he was thinking about the boys and how great they could play in Neverland, if they were taken to there from London. He hoped that the Llewelyn-Davies boys would like it as much as he did. The man looked at the innocent boy faces of Sylvia's children. They expressed impatient expectation of when he started to read his story to him. The man sighed. What a beautiful sight – the eyes of your faithful listeners, greedily fixated on him. They must like Neverland a lot indeed. They must like him. It was a truly happy thing to have such wonderful young friends.