Actions

Work Header

Stop and Stare

Chapter Text

A warm weight shifted onto the back of Morty’s legs. The blanket wasn’t covering them or his back anymore, but the dog would leave if he moved too much, so he settled for burrowing farther into the pillow.

 

Something trailed his skin. His shirt pushed up farther, a warmth slinking across his chest and around his nipple. He whimpered at the sensation, turning over the slightest bit to allow access. The smell of booze hit.

 

Morty didn’t have a dog anymore. His eyes snapped opened. “Rick?”

 

His grandfather was on top of him, his legs sandwiching Morty’s. His eyes were loose and he swayed even though he was sitting. “Shh,” Rick slurred. “Ev-everything’s okay, Morty. Just gotta, gotta keep quiet. Ten minutes.”

 

Rick’s hand was still caressing his nipple. Morty sat up and whacked it away, causing Rick to sway excessively. “What the hell, Rick?”

 

Rick pushed him back down. Morty tried to sit up again, but the old man was stronger than he looked. “Don’t make this hard,” Rick said. His brow loosened as he spoke, a chuckle escaping. “Well, make it hard. That’s sorta the point.” Rick wiggle his hips, leaning into Morty’s crotch.

 

Morty burned red. “Stop it!” He tried to squirm away. “You’re being gross, Rick.”

 

“Human beings are gr-URP-oss, Morty. You should, should be used to it by now.” Rick reached over him, grabbed a half-empty bottle of booze, and took a swig. Morty’s brow furrowed and he whacked it out of his hand. Rick’s head swung to follow it, eyes squinting as it gug-gug-guged out onto the carpet.

 

Rick whipped his head back, clawing Morty’s bed pants down. Morty slapped him. “That’s enough.” He knew Rick, knew he wouldn’t do what he was insinuating. It was all drunk nonsense. Morty just had to be authoritative.

 

Rick slumped forward, eyes still tense from the spilled booze, and grabbed Morty’s crotch.

 

His mouth dropped opened. A high pitch whimper slipped as Rick rubbed him through his underwear. Morty almost leaned into it, but this was Rick. Why would Rick..?

 

Rick curled his fingers passed the fabric. Skin on skin, a hundred times stronger. Morty elbowed Rick in the face. Rick’s hands left. Morty kicked his knees up and shoved and kicked until Rick tumbled to the floor.

 

Rick chuckled, lifting his head only to drop it to the floor again. “I like the spunk. Very spunky you’ve got.”

 

Morty pulled his pants up. “You’re an asshole.” Morty was hard. The hand felt like it was still there, which didn’t help. A glance at Rick; his pants were tented. Morty covered his face.

 

“Not 'nough,” Rick said. “Too attached, Morty. You’re... you’ve gotta stop.”

 

Morty shook his head. This wasn't supposed to happen. In the bathroom of some bar was understandable, but his own bedroom? He let it happen for a minute, too. He’d froze. It was from shock, but he froze, and Rick’s hands...

 

A snore snapped Morty’s back straight. Rick was passed out in a pile and drooling. Still hard.

 

Morty crawled out of bed, grabbed his grandpa by the wrists, and dragged him into the hallway with short tugs. He was too exhausted, too fed up, to pull Rick all the way to his room, but he did turn Rick on his side. The recovery position, least Rick drowned in his own vomit.

 

Morty locked his door and dropped into bed as he tried to figure out if molestation was better or worse than a neutrino bomb.

 

 

***

 

 

Summer noticed things.

 

She kept quiet about it most of the time, but she'd been trained as a kid to keep an eye out. It started with noticing the droplets of wine that made the floor sticky and the carpet red. The stale smell. It dictated Mom's mood and motor functions and since Dad was a pussy when it came to separating Mom from her wine, he'd whisper instructions to Summer and push her towards her mother. It was Summer's job to distract her and hide the bottles. Spill them, even, Dad giving her deserts afterward as payment.

 

She'd note Mom's furrowed brow and tight eyes or her loose smile and slack muscles. She learned what moods matched what features and what actions tended to follow. It was helpful to know when a fight was brewing. If it was better to hide in her room or distract a parent. If Morty was the thing pushing them over the edge, she could distract him with pillow forts and lemonade tea parties.

 

She didn't see much of Morty anymore. She got high with friends; he explored the multiverse with Rick. She stopped babysitting him around the time she stopped babysitting her parents. She cultivated a social life and found reasons to get out of the house, but she still kept tabs on him and everyone else. It wasn't even intentional, really. It just felt natural to tune into the rhythm of alcohol consumption and the direction a glare flew across the kitchen table.

 

So, yeah, Summer noticed Morty wasn’t sleeping well. She drove them to school most days and he'd frequently pass out during the fifteen-minute drive. Usually, she shook him without saying anything about it, but her hand stilled when she saw the dark bags under his eyes. They'd been collecting there a week or more. She couldn't remember exactly when she first noticed them.

 

She wiped the concern from her face and shook him. “There’s melatonin in the medicine cabinet, you know.”

 

Morty blinked awake. “Huh?”

 

“Melatonin. It’s a sleep aid in a purple bottle. Dad used to need it.” She got out of the car, closing her door and opening the back one to grab her book bag.

 

Morty got out of the car. “Okay?” He said it like he didn't get why she was mentioning it, but Summer went into school without another word.

  

He figured it out, at least. Her bedroom was across from the bathroom and she heard him fishing around in the medicine cabinet. The bags never fully left, but they seemed to get the slightest bit better, not that is was Summer's business. Morty was 14 and he could make and learn from his choices.

 

 

***

 

 

A sound tickled Summer’s ears, but it wasn’t an explosion, as far as she could tell, so she pulled the pillow over her head and let her blankets cradle her. They were warm. She was warm.

 

Two solid knocks broke through. “Summer!”

 

Morty. She grabbed her phone from the nightstand— she must’ve slept through her alarms— and squinted at the 2:11 that lit her screen. Really?

 

Three more knocks, quick this time. “Sum—“

 

“It’s 2AM,” she shouted, already burying herself in blanket.

 

The door clicked opened. Summer shot back up, glaring at him. “Don’t kick me,” he said, hands shielding his crotch. He leaned against the door to shut it.

 

Summer sat up with a groan. He had the common decency to keep the light off, at least.

 

Morty didn’t say anything more. She thought he was catching his breath at first, but his breathing sounded normal. It was the only normal thing about all this.

 

“Well,” she asked.

 

The outlines of his face were visible in the dark, now that Summer’s vision had adjusted some. His eyes darted around the room like he was looking for something. The bruises that formed under his eyes this past week seemed darker, but she wasn’t sure how much of that was due to the lighting.

 

“Morty.” Summer snapped her fingers. “Stop being weird.”

 

His eyes focused on her as he stepped away from the door, brow pinched. “Has Rick ever woken you up drunk?”

 

Summer scoffed. “That’s the question keeping you up at night?”

 

“Just answer it, Summer.”

 

Summer crossed her arms. “Yeah? He wakes the whole house sometimes, drunk or not. I just ignore it.”

 

Morty’s mouth opened slightly, a flash of hurt in his eyes as they met carpet. Before Summer could figure out what she'd done, he looked up, lips pressed together. “I mean has he ever come in your room drunk.”

 

“No.” She gave a pointed glare. “He’s not rude, unlike some people.”

 

Morty clenched his fist. “I’m not— just tell me if he does, okay? Text me, knock on the wall, just wake me up, alright?”

 

Summer blinked, his tone finally cutting passed her sleep-idled mind. No one begged to be woken up unless it was something important and Morty was as sleep deprived as they came. “I know how to deal with drunk people, I was doing it before you were born.”

 

“But not Rick. He’s worse than Mom. He'll do worse than give you an accidental black eye.”

 

“Like?”

 

"Just promise!” He covered his mouth as if he could take back the loud. “It’s really not a big deal.”

 

“Obviously it is if you’re getting all worked up about it.” But Morty looked fragile and tired and pathetic and Summer didn’t have the patience to get into it at that moment. She sighed. “If it’ll help you sleep at night, I promise.”

 

He perked up, muscles losing their tension. “Thank you.” He turned the door handle and slipped through the crack.

 

“Morty.”

 

He paused, looking back.

 

“You can knock on the wall, too, you know.”

 

He gave a quick nod and closed the door behind him. She didn’t expect him to take her up on the offer, but it was the best she could do.

 

 

***

 

 

Next time Morty knocked on her door, he had a plastic water bottle of wine in one hand and Rick’s flask in the other. “What’re you doing,” she asked even though it was obvious.

 

Morty smiled. “You wanna drink together?” His voice wasn’t hushed. “Mom’s passed out already and Rick’s probably gonna be in the garage all night.”

 

Summer tapped the pause on her phone, killing the music her speaker was spouting. “Why?” A few weeks had passed. Morty was a bit better, though she wasn’t sure how much credit she should give herself for that. She’d talked to Rick after his late night visit. Told him to ease up on the adventures, couldn’t he see Morty was sleep deprived and falling flat on his face, stuff like that. As much as Rick bitched her out for the concerned, he seemed to lighten up, if just a tad.

 

“Cause I don’t wanna drink alone,” Morty said.

 

“Go drink with...“ She couldn't think of anyone for him to drink with aside from Rick. Morty’s shoulders slumped. Summer took the flask. “Balcony?”

 

“You don’t have to,” Morty said.

 

She shrugged. “I got nothing better to do.” Well, homework, but a few late assignments wouldn’t kill her. “It's for fun, right?”

 

“Yeah,” Morty said. “I just wanna let loose, ya know?”

 

Summer nodded. “It’s on your head if either of them notice.”

 

“Yeah. I know.”

 

It was warmly chilly outside. Morty brought his pillows and blankets out plus a few extras from the closet and Summer brought her speaker to play at a low volume. It’d be a few more weeks before they had to worry about mosquitos, but she lit one of the repellant candles for the aesthetic of it.

 

The garage door was open, sparks flying out every so often. Rick could see them if he bothered to walk out onto the driveway, but it wasn’t like he’d see the alcohol from there.

 

They sat against the sliding glass door. “What drinking games do you know,” Summer asked.

 

“Never have I ever, flip cup, two truths one lie.” Morty shrugged. “Can’t anything be a drinking game?”

 

“Pretty much.” She took a sip of Rick’s flask, clearing her throat as she swallowed. "Tastes worse than before."

 

“It's some alien liquor. I'm not sure which one, he has a few favorites."

 

Summer grabbed the water-wine bottle and tossed the flask at Morty.

 

They started with two truths one lie, the game dissipating into conversation after a few short rounds. They remembered the daycare they were left at when Dad had a job and Mom spent her days on a college campus. They made fun of kids from school and speculated the origin of Principle Vagina's name. They discussed the divorce. How much of a relief it was. How Rick put more effort into caring about them than Dad did and that was saying something since Rick hated showing how much he cared.

 

Morty finished the flask. Summer went to the kitchen to refill her wine. She filled a glass with water while she was at it and brought it back up. Morty was laying down and staring up at the stars. She handed the glass to him. "Glass of water for every drink. Keeps you from getting a hangover." He should probably drink way more than a measly glass, Rick's shit was potent, but it was a start.

 

"Thanks." He sat up so he could sip it. "Can we do this again? I've missed this. Missed you."

 

Summer sat, wrapping a blanket around herself. Of course, Morty was a sappy drunk. "You can't miss me. I haven't left."

 

"You know what I mean." He laid back down. "We use to hang out. Like a lot. Like, I get you have friends now and I have Rick, but..."

 

He looked pathetic again. Summer took a sip of the wine she'd just refilled. "You need friends, Morty. Not Rick. Friends your age so you have an excuse to get out of the house." It'd be better once he found some friends. It's what teenagers did. They got friends and distanced themselves from their family, Morty was just taking a little longer to do that than she had.

 

"I don't think he'd like that."

 

"Rick? Why not?"

 

Morty blinked real slow. “Sometimes I sleep all night and wake up tired.”

 

Well, alright. “That happens sometimes.”

 

Morty shook his head. “There’s little changes when it happens. Like, when I wake up my shirt's inside out or my underwear changed or. Or ripped. Sometimes my ass aches. Sometimes there're bruises.”

 

Summer set the bottle down, unease bubbling her stomach. Morty kept talking, voice low and slightly slurred, but not a stutter. He always stuttered.

 

“Things in my room move too, sometimes, or I find something of Rick’s. Like his flask.” Summer’s eyes dashed to the empty container. Morty bit his lip, squeezing his eyes shut. “Sometimes it’s... bodily fluids. I’m not talking about piss. And I don’t think it’s mine.”

 

Summer’s jaw dropped. “You think Rick—“

 

“I don’t know,” he said. “He wouldn’t do that. Why would he do that? I’m probably looking too much into it.”

 

“Probably,” she said, flinching as the word left her mouth. “I mean, like, I know you wouldn’t lie about this, but it’s hard to believe Grandpa would...”

 

“He does what he wants,” Morty said. “He takes what he wants and he doesn’t care how it affects others. He’s selfish. But I never thought he’d...”

 

Her room. 2AM. “Something happened.” She told him more than asked. “You can’t make excuses anymore, can you.”

 

Morty didn’t move. Didn’t say anything.

 

Summer didn’t wanna know. She didn’t wanna think about her grandpa and her brother and that, but who else could Morty go to? Mom? She’d do anything to get Grandpa Rick to stay, maybe even... God, their family was fucked up.

 

The water bottle had a little wine left. Summer pushed it through the wood that fenced the balcony. Drinking for fun was fine, but when shit got serious...

 

Morty’s eyes snapped open when it hit the bush. He sat up, wrapping the blanket tighter around him. “Sorry, I, uh. I didn’t. I was just babbling on, you know, it’s really not a big deal.”

 

She looked at him. “Morty.”

 

“It’s nothing I can’t handle. Drunk nonsense, you know? We’re drunk.” He tried to smile. “Can’t trust, trust those words that come out, ya know?”

 

Summer pinned him with a stare.

 

He bit his lip. “Don’t tell anyone.”

 

“Well, no duh.” Even if they wanted to get CPS involved, they were no match for Rick. Few people were. “What exactly did he do?”

 

“Nothing!”

 

Summer pinched her brow. “Look, this might come as a shock to you, but I know what we’re dealing with. I know who we’re dealing with.”

 

Morty glanced down at the opened garage door. “He was drunk. I don’t think he even remembers.”

 

“That’s no excuse.”

 

Morty faced her. “I don’t want things to change, alright?” He stood, blanket and all, falling towards the door. Summer reached towards him, but he threw the door opened and ran through before she could catch his arm. Chasing him wouldn't help any, so she let him leave. Gave him space to calm down.

 

Alone on the balcony, her mind couldn't help but race. When Grandpa Rick explained Morty’s Mind Blowers to her, Summer hadn't thought much of them. If Morty had shit he wanted to unsee, it was his choice whether or not he remembered it. If Grandpa Rick wanted to give her a pile of money every month to fixed resulting fuck ups, she wasn’t gonna complain.

 

It hadn’t occurred to her how much power Grandpa Rick could have over Morty, over the whole family, because of it. Like, it had, because it was Grandpa Rick doing it, but for him to go as far as Morty implied...

 

Summer rushed to her room and unearthed a yellow composition notebook from her backpack. Her name was sharpied on the front, random math problems scattering the first few pages. She kept all that as is, skipping to the next free page.

 

She hadn’t kept a diary since she was twelve. She’d prefer one that looked cute, but she needed something inconspicuous. Something she could have out in the opened without drawing attention.

 

She jotted down what she could remember of her conversations with Morty then brainstormed a plan pen and paper. The stairs creaked around 2AM and Summer closed the book to listened as Rick passed her room and closed himself in his. She refocused herself after a few minutes of silence, ears perked for noise.

 

Twenty-five minutes later, she walked into Morty’s room, flipped the lights on, and shook him awake. He jolted up. “Huh? Summer, what’s... you okay?”

 

“Does Grandpa look in your backpack?”

 

“Why would he?”

 

Summer found his backpack and threw it on top of him. “Pick a notebook, one you don’t use that much.”

 

“You mean all of them?” He pulled out a blue spiral. “It’s sorta ridiculous. Th-They tell you to buy five, but you never need more than two if anything. It’s all printouts and internet-based stuff.” He dug around the bottom of the bag to find a pen. “What’s this for? Did we forget Mother’s Day or something?”

 

Summer checked the hallway, then closed Morty’s door. “Make a list of the clues you were talking about earlier.”

 

Morty’s eyes narrowed. “I told you to drop it.”

 

“Too bad.”

 

“Summer—“

 

“Just hear me out.” Morty crossed his arms, refusing to look her in the face. Summer figured it was close enough. “I’ll let you make whatever decisions you want, but not before you have all the facts.”

 

Morty’s head snapped up. “You know something?”

 

Summer’s mouth worked without words for a second. “I’ll show you, but we’re dead if Rick catches us.”

 

Morty starred at the notebook, a dark glint lighting his eyes. It warped his entire face and Summer saw, for a moment, the toll. This was Morty before all the things he wanted to forget. Before all the things Rick wanted to be ripped from his mind.

 

Summer wasn’t sure she’d recognize her brother if he remembered the rest.

 

Morty tossed himself out of bed. “Let’s go.”

 

“The list—“

 

“Forget the list.”

 

Summer huffed but followed him out of the room.

 

 

***

 

 

Summer kept an eye on Morty as she led him through the lower levels of the garage. She knew he’d been down there before, but the way his eyes scanned as they turned down the hallway leading to the mindblowers told a different story.

 

She opened the door. His eyes went wide, taking in the colorful vials of liquid. His head bobbled as he turned.

 

Summer leaned against the door. “Sometimes you get traumatized and ask Grandpa Rick to remove the memory from your mind. We call them Morty’s Mindblowers.”

 

Morty stared at her, hurt evident in his eyes. “You knew about this?”

 

“You two idiots messing around with a memory gun? Someone needs to babysit you.”

 

Morty gingerly picked up a blue vial. “H-how did I not notice giant chunks of, of my memory missing?”

 

Summer scoffed. “You did, Morty. That’s sorta why we’re here.” She picked the helmet off of the table. “You asked for these memories to be removed, but maybe that doesn’t apply to all of them. Maybe Grandpa Rick...” She bit her lip.

 

Morty spun in a circle, looking around the room. “I guess there’s only one way to find out, huh.”

 

“I know how to reset your memories,” Summer said. “Grandpa updates a vial every few weeks or so just in case something fucks with your heads. It won’t contain any of this,” she gestured around the room. “Your choice, whether or not you remember.”

 

Morty took the helmet from her and placed it on his head.

 

From there, it was a matter of plugging vials in. Morty moves from each one in relative silence, his expression more than telling. Summer restrained herself from asking what the memory was each time, busying herself with what each label might mean.

 

It didn’t take him long to find a pattern. “I’m gonna focus on the red ones. They’re, ah. I think they’re the ones Rick removed.” There were just as many red vials as there was blue, if not more.

 

“Alright.” She tried to keep a pleasant tone, but nerves roughed it up. “Let me know what you find. If you want to.”

 

They went back to sharing quiet. Summer’s eyes caught on Morty’s expression now and then. A hitched breath. A trembling lip. His hand rubbing the back of his neck, his eyes downcast. Morty would catch her looking and she’d focus on another vial title, or hand one off for him to remember.

 

The whole situation was awkward.

 

“S-summer?”

 

She glanced up. Morty’s hands trembled, a red vial tightly gripped. Black residue lined the tape’s edges, the word “virginity” scrawled onto the cream-colored surface.

 

She swallowed. “That could mean a lot of things.”

 

Morty glared. “Like what?”

 

Aside from the obvious, she drew a blank.

 

They stared at it. Morty turned it over in his hands. “Should I?”

 

Summer bit her lip. “Curiosity killed the cat?”

 

“Satisfaction brought it back,” Morty retorted.

 

“I don’t think satisfaction is the word for it.” It was glass. She could snatch it, break it before Morty’s reflexes kicked it. She could, but this was supposed to be his choice. “What’ve you seen so far?”

 

He cleared his throat. “Rick saying ‘granite’ instead of ‘granted.’ Me getting kidnapped by another Rick and being forced to fight other Mortys. Rick ranting about how much I need him and stuff.”

 

“So nothing...” Summer didn’t want to say it, but “Sexual?”

 

“The last one was. Figured I’d spare you the details.”

 

Summer couldn’t keep the shudder from shaking her spine. Morty looked away, moving the vial towards the helmet. “Wait,” Summer said.

 

He looked at her.

 

“You have your proof. You don’t need to—“

 

“Maybe it’s something else,” Morty said.

 

Summer starred.

 

“Okay, remember that first day in freshman history? When he was all ‘it says gullible on the ceiling’ and that whole look vs not look thing happened? Did he do that for your class?”

 

“Yeah,” Summer said. “He’s been doing it since mom and dad were kids.”

 

“Yeah, so.” Morty starred at the vial. “I’m checking the facts for myself. Otherwise, it’s doomed to repeat or something like that.”

 

He put the vial in. It glowed and Morty’s face slacked. That didn’t make it expressionless; his lip twitched down every so often. His shoulders tensed.

 

Then he flinched, full body, eyes snapping shut, and Summer knew it was exactly what she thought it was. She looked at the door instead, as if she was keeping watch for Rick. Could she stop it? Yank it out, break the vail mid-mind-meld? Would that hurt him?

 

She watched her hands shake and did nothing.

 

The glowing died down and she turned to him. “What do you wanna do?” He was sweating more than before, his eyes still closed. Maybe he hadn’t heard her. “Morty?”

 

Morty shrugged, eyes distant.

 

“CPS is a bad idea,” Summer continued. “If an intergalactic federation can’t—“

 

“Stop,” Morty said. “God, Summer, let me. Give me a minute.”

 

She took a deep breath. Bombarding him wouldn’t help. She had to let Morty breath and think and all that. All this had to be his decision.

 

14-year-olds shouldn’t have to make decisions like this.

 

Morty took the helmet off. “Nothing,” he said. “We’re gonna just go back to our lives and do nothing.”

 

Her stomach dropped. “You want me to erase—“

 

“No!” He swallowed. “No, I don’t wanna just... god, Summer, I don’t know.” He sat on the chair, head in hands.

 

Okay. Okay, Summer could do this. Or something, at the very least. “Do you wanna go to Mom?”

 

His eyes shot up as he gestured to the gun sitting on the table. “He has a machine that erases memories, Summer.”

 

“Okay.” She looked around the room. They could break it. Rick could build a new one, but it’d buy them time. Time to do what? “Well, worse comes to worst there’s always running away.” Summer nodded to herself. “I’m almost done with high school and I wasn’t planning on college, anyways. We could get some cheap apartment.”

 

Morty jumped up. “W-w-what are you even talking about? You can’t just— We can’t just leave!”

 

She crossed her arms. “Why not? This house blows anyways.”

 

He pulled at his hair and groaned. “It’s like you-you want him gone!”

 

Summer got in his face. “He’s molesting you. I can live with never seeing him again because you don’t deserve that.”

 

Morty stared at her, hands slipping from his hair, jaw unhindered. His eyes watered for the first time since everything unraveled. “W-what?”

 

Summer stepped back. “You don’t deserve that. And Rick doesn’t deserve you if he’s gonna be like that.” Was it really that hard for him to believe? "Like, I love Rick, but you gotta admit he's taking over your life, our lives, whatever. Maybe Dad was right for once. Maybe it's not the best thing."

 

Morty turned away, taking the vial out of the helmet and setting it in the exact spot he found it in. “Mom won’t feel the same way.”

 

“She’s not the best mom.”

  

A long silence. Morty checked his phone. “Let’s just go to bed, alright?” He tried a smile. “Thanks for showing me.”

 

He walked past her. Summer grabbed his arm. “Hey. We’re a team on this, okay?” Morty yanked away, still walking. Summer followed him into the hallway. "You remember. That means you can do something about it. We'll figure something out. If we did want to run away, there's a whole multiverse. It'll be impossible to find us."

 

Morty stopped, fists clenched. "Do you regret breaking him out of prison?"

 

Summer swallowed. She didn't. She knew she didn't, but she couldn't tell Morty that.

 

Morty nodded at her silence. "I don't either. I still care about him and I know you do, too, so. So I'll be okay. I promise."

 

 

 

Chapter Text

Morty's uncoordinated limbs managed to drag his body into bed. With the lights off and the door firmly shut, he closed his eyes and buried himself in covers.

 

Thoughts seeped in. He'd been pushing them back for hours, busying himself with vials. Determined to maintain a facade for Summer. Exhaustion had made his mind slow and murky to compensate for physical movement, but laying still stirred them up.

 

Rick was asleep, they’d checked, but he could wake up. He could come in and have his way with Morty because it was Rick and going against him was impossible. Nowhere was safe, not his bedroom, not even the shower. 

 

Don’t think about it. Morty twisted into the covers and squeezed his eyes shut, but it didn’t help. Rick’s touch felt there, for a moment, and Morty moved again to remind himself he could.

 

He could deal with this. He dealt with Rick’s shit all the time. It wasn’t even the worst thing he’d experienced, anyway, and he didn’t remember most of it. Won’t remember when it happened again.

 

Morty’s eyes snapped to the clock. He hadn’t looked at it when he came in, didn’t have anything to compare it to. Did 4:32AM make sense? Probably. He could ask Summer.

 

No. There was no point. She already wanted to do something, he couldn’t encourage her. She’d get hurt. Besides, it wasn’t forever. Rick was 70. What was the chance of him living another ten years? Another twenty? Sure, he had science and mechanical limbs. Could probably starve off liver failure with some concoction. But Rick was reckless, the swarms of Rickless Mortys proved as much. He'd die and Morty could exist without Rick.

 

...

 

Right? Morty had been fine before Rick came into his life. Though, in Morty's case, fine meant normal. Lonely. Overlooked. Morty had been pretty useless until Rick came along. Morty knew CPR, now, for three different species. He could fly a spaceship and disarm a bomb. He could actually run the mile in gym class. He was capable of saving Rick and having his back when it mattered.

 

Morty wasn't capable of much else. Rick would die one day and Morty would go back to being useless if he didn't do something about it.

 

That kept him awake more than anything else.

 

 

 

***

 

 

 

Mom knocked on his bedroom door several times and shouted up the stairs several more to wake him. Morty responded, first with groans then with shouts of "I know," without getting out of bed. He would've stayed there all day if Summer hadn't banged on his door and demanded to be let in.

 

"I just wanna sleep," Morty called.

 

"Rick's gonna drag you across the galaxy if you don't go to school."

 

Morty shoved his face into the pillow. "He's gonna do it anyway."

 

Summer sighed. "Look, I know this sucks, but you gotta act normal. We can't fix this if he catches on."

 

Morty groaned louder.

 

"Sleep-deprived and depressed works, too."

 

Morty groaned again but stood. He could at least inconvenience Rick by going to school. He fished the caffeine pills out of his backpack and popped two into his mouth before pushing passed Summer to get to the bathroom. She'd be late to first period if she waited for him, but Morty didn't have it in him to speed.

 

Eggs and bacon and toast scented the hallway. Maybe he had it in him to speed a little.

  

Mom washed the dishes while Rick lingered at the table, busy tinkering with a glowing metal box. The leftovers sat on a paper plate to Rick's right. Morty pouted. "Not near the food."

 

"Shoulda come down earlier then. Hey, since you're already late-"

 

“I’m going to school, today,” he cut in. “History test, and I actually studied, so.”

 

Rick scoffed. “C’mon, like Earth history even matters.”

 

“Save the nothing matters spiel. Wherever it is we can go after.” 

 

Rick opened his mouth, but Mom cleared her throat. “Dad. If Morty wants to go to school, let him.”

 

Rick frowned at his daughter but refocused on his metal doohickey like it was the only important thing in the room.

 

 

 

***

 

 

 

Morty wasn’t surprised to see Rick leaning against his locker after 3rd period. “Hey,” Rick shouted down the hall. A few kids turned to look, but they were used to Rick at that point. “You sick of this place yet?”

 

“History test,” Morty said, shoving Rick over so he could spin the combination opened.

 

“When?”

 

“8th period.”

 

“Perfect. We'll grab lunch, hop over to the Glaupunk district, and be back by whatever time that is."

 

Morty clenched his teeth and yanked the lock opened. "You always say that and we're never back in time."

 

"Hey, it's not my fault you come to your senses."

 

He threw his hands in the air. "I don't! You distract me with, with almost dying and laser guns and things we can't just get out of!" He changed out his books. "I don’t feel like an adventure right now."

 

“Suuuuuuuure.”

 

Morty slammed his locker shut. “I’m exhausted, Rick! I-I-I I’m running on caffeine pills and I, I’ve been having a rough time, Rick, not that you or anyone notice! I need a break!” He didn't need Rick and he didn't need the adventures. “So no, I don’t want an adventure. I want. I’m gonna take a test, sit alone at lunch, and then go home and take a nap.”

 

Students were staring. Morty tried to ignore it, but his face turned red at the attention. Rick rolled his eyes at him. “No wonder you’re single, do you-do you think this attitude, it doesn’t help, you know. Doesn’t help your case." But Rick studied him, brow furrowed. Morty waited for Rick to grab him. To force him through a portal. He could jump out of the way if he paid enough attention, but it'd be useless. Rick would catch up to him, eventually. It wasn't worth resisting. The realization made his throat clog and his hands shake. Pathetic that he couldn't stand up for himself.

 

Rick shot a portal into the wall. "I don’t wanna be around you anyways if you’re gonna bitch my dick off.” He walked towards the spinning green without reaching for Morty. “Talk to me after you fix your shit.”

 

And then he was gone.

 

Morty stared at the panel of lockers Rick had disappeared into and waited for the floor to fall through. For a hand to yank his shoulder. It was a trick to lure him into a false sense of security. So Rick could snatch him without much resistance.

 

The bell rang. Morty walked to class, still tense.

 

Minutes passed.

 

Hours.

 

Rick wasn't home when he and Summer walked through the door. She asked Morty if he'd be okay if she went to a friend's house and he told her to do whatever with her life and she told him to text her when Rick got home and to lock his bedroom door if he took a nap, so he yelled at her to leave him alone and ran upstairs.

 

He ended up dragging his pillow and blanket into the closet and sleeping in there. Rick had let him say no to an adventure. There had to be repercussions for that. If there weren't, then Rick had done it out of concern. How was Morty suppose to hate him when Rick cared about his wellbeing?

 

 

 

***

 

 

 

Morty caved.


Day four without an adventure, he caved. It was Summer’s fault. She asked if they could have French toast for dinner.


“We’re out of eggs,” Mom said, “If you wanna run to the store—“


Rick scoffed. “Yeah, sure, you could run to the store like. Like a normie, if you wanna settle for those small ass chicken eggs.”


Summer rolled her eyes. “There’s an alternative?”


“Yeah, like a million, Summer. Like, uhhh, like dinosaur eggs.”


From the couch, Morty’s head whipped around, knees on the cushions as he stared over the back of it. “There’s what?”


Rick smirked from the kitchen. “Yeah, this one dimension. Humans and din-dinosaurs, side by side, completely normal. Scary even with fur and feathers cause, cause some, they’re large and can stomp on your house. But their eggs, best omelets ever. Can’t believe I’ve lived here over a year and, and never introduced you to these things. They’re the shit!”


Morty hung over the back of the couch, jaw dropped. Real live dinosaurs! “Can we go? Can we, can we go see the dinosaurs, Rick?”


“Hell yeah,” Rick shouted, already digging around his lab coat for the portal gun. “Should only take us half an hour, Beth, if you wanna hold off on dinner.”


Mom gave a light nod. Morty caught a glimpse of Summer staring at him as he rushed through the portal, an odd expression on her face, but the environment snagged Morty's attention before he fully processed it. A long-necked dinosaur stood in front of them. It was far enough away that they didn’t have to worry about being crushed, but close enough that Morty had to strain his neck to see the head buried in a tree top. “So they don’t have feathers!”


“Most do,” Rick said. “Big ones have, they have these small quills. Like how elephants have hairs. Those are the feathered ones.” There were pudgy, black, feathered creatures close by, a fence circling them. The eggs sat in a dirt nest towards the middle of the enclosure. They had to be as big as his head.


They walked towards the animals, Rick ranting about the inaccuracies of the Jurassic Park movies. Morty spotted people throwing leaves into the enclosure of the dinosaurs to eat. They were small. Kids, Morty thought. Then he saw a beard. “Holy shit, are those adults?”


“Yeah, people here only grow to be —blurgh, four foot tall at most. Average is three foot six.”


Morty entertained the thought of a shorter Morty and a short Rick somewhere in the dimension while Rick heckled “Bitch ass hobbit people,” at the locals. It wasn’t the nicest thing to do, but Morty found himself chuckling along out of relief more than anything else. They were alone on an adventure and everything was fine. Rick was behaving. Morty got to see dinosaurs and miniature people running a dinosaur farm.


Something loosened in his chest as he absorbed the fresh air. The greenspace. Rick's chatter. Maybe he’d overreacted, avoiding the adventures. Rick, he paid more attention to Morty than anyone at school or home. Sure, it was out of convenience, but still. Rick liked him. The... sexual part of it proved that at the very least. Either way, times like these, they made it worth dealing with Rick’s shit.


Rick went quiet. Before Morty could ask, Rick grabbed him by the shirt and broke into a sprint. “Hurry up and grab an egg,” he said, voice serious. Morty glanced back. The hobbit people were on their heels.


Rick and him closed the few yards between themselves and the fence. The horizontal metal bars were easy enough to climb, but the eggs sat in a dirt hole in the center of the enclosure.


Dino-birds ran at them. Morty tried to dodge their razor teeth, curving to avoid their attacks. Rick shoved him forward as a gunshot sounded from behind them. The mob climbed the fence, glocks in hand. Rick pulled his laser gun, shooting anything that moved. "Eggs, Morty!"


Morty ran for the pit, batting at the dino-birds as they defended their young. A slip of mud brought him down, the creatures biting into his legs as he struggled to stand.

Morty screamed as he punched and kicked for his life.

 

 

 

***

 

 

 

They portaled into the kitchen five minutes before the promised 30, both of them holding a giant egg. “Holy shit,” Mom said. “It’s the size of a cat.”

 

“Hell yeah,” Rick said. He went into a tangent about dinosaur breeds as he handed the egg off to Summer.

 

Morty set his egg on the table, legs throbbing. He tried to smile at Rick’s rant, but it was hard to be amused while covered in mud and blood and dinosaur shit and egg yolk. He'd broken an egg sliding into the nest. The bird-a-saurs had added to his wounds in response. Wounds that were still leaking, but he wasn’t too worried. Rick could grow back hands and heal broken bones, he could probably cure whatever diseases Morty might contract from a bite.

 

Mom wiped the egg off with a towel. “Morty, get washed up for dinner.” Then to Rick, “How do we crack it? Should we use a hammer or something?”

 

Morty grounded his teeth and limped to the stairs. It felt worse than it had when the creatures tore at it, but he had managed to walk through the portal so it had to be fine. He kept a tight grip on the banister once he got to the stairs and took his time to place his feet so he wouldn’t fall down the steps.

 

He was swaying and sweating by the top. A glance back down showed him Rick and his Mom messing with an egg, Rick drawing a dotted line on it in sharpie and Mom shuffling through pans and baking sheets. Even Summer seemed enchanted by the process, though she crossed her arms and glanced at her phone to portray disinterest. His injuries couldn’t be that bad if none of them had noticed.

 

Morty locked himself in the bathroom, unearthed the first aid kit from under the sink, and sat on the edge of the tub. He managed to pull his pants passed his hips, but couldn’t go much farther than that. He hadn’t noticed with the gunk coating his legs, but his pant legs were shredded.

 

Cleaning the grime off before removing the pants seemed easier, so Morty turned the water on, waited for it to warm, and maneuvered into the tub. He whimpered as he hit the bottom of it. He should get Rick. These injuries were beyond him and ace bandages, but the thought of being trapped in the bathtub with Rick standing over him-

 

Morty stared at his ruined, bare legs as the water beat down on them. Don't think about it. He could clean his own wounds. He didn't need Rick for that. He probably couldn't make it to the garage by himself to retrieve the medicine, but he could probably scoot to his room and get dressed before bothering Rick.

 

The sponge hung off a hook suctioned to the shower tile. Morty tried to hop up and grab it, but his leg gave out. He fell back on his ass, a sharp cry at the jolt of nerves.

 

The water slid towards the drain a brownish-red. Morty stared at it as he picked at the remaining fabric of his pants. He was afraid to look at his leg.

 

A knock on the door. “Morty,” Summer called.

 

“Use the downstairs bathroom,” he said. He took a slow breath and examined his leg. “Shit.” A chunk was missing from his thigh. A large chunk. He’d seen the indent, but now that he could actually see the skin and muscle, it looked deeper. And messier. And deformed.

 

“Sounded like you fell,” Summer said.

 

Morty swallowed, a hiss leaking out as he turned his leg. His cafe wasn’t as bad. There were teeth punctures and the skin was peeled back, but the creature’s jaw had wrapped around his shin. It hadn’t been able to bit through the bone. “G-get Rick.” His voice was too high pitched. He hated it.

 

“Uh, do you think that's a good idea?”

 

"Yes, I'm bleeding!"

 

The stairs creaked as Summer bounced down them, too quick for Morty's liking. He put his head in his hands. It wouldn't be like last time. Or whatever time it happened. It was hard to tell when things occurred with the memory vials.

 

He turned the water off and looked himself over. His underwear was still on, the waist of his pants falling just below his ass. Morty tried to pull at the fabric ending at his left ankle, cause it was still mostly intact, but it only got partway down before the wound on his thigh made him stop. He groaned.

 

The bathroom door opened. “Rick,” Morty complained. He could at least knock.

 

Rick looked him over. Morty’s face heated, stomach dropping. He didn’t like how Rick’s eyes fell on him. They weren’t loose with alcohol, at least not more than usual, but Morty still had to look away, throat suddenly dry. Rick pulling back the shower curtain. Rick shhing Morty's protests and questions as he covered his mouth. Rick's hand trailing Morty's asscheeks, then between them. Mom was downstairs. Summer was at a friend's house. Rick was behind him. Cuming inside. Stroking Morty off.

 

“Wow,” Rick said, still in the doorway. “The dracorex got you good, huh.”

 

Morty closed his eyes and nodded. It was fine. He was sitting in the tub, not standing in it. His ass wasn't accessible and his legs were a mess. Not that he'd put it passed Rick to get turned on by a bit of blood, but now wasn't the time for it.

 

A hand wrapped around Morty’s arm. He flinched back, eyes flying wide as he flailed. “Hey, hey, hey,” Rick said, “it’s just me.” He reached towards Morty again.

 

Morty whacked his arm away. “Don’t!”

 

Rick paused. After a second, he reached out.

 

Morty flinched. The hands were still touching him. His legs were still pinned. He couldn’t fight Rick off like this, not with a fucked up leg.

 

Rick rubbed his temple. “Damnit, Morty, what was the point of, of calling me up here if you weren’t gonna, weren’t gonna let me help?”

 

Morty looked down. “Sorry. It, ah. It just hurts.” A weak excuse, but it was all he had.

 

He let Rick grab his arm and hoist him onto the side of the tub. “You’re supposed to, to stop the bleeding before you clean it, dumbass.” Rick tossed the hand towel at him. “No point in, in stopping infection if you bleed to death.”

 

Morty’s eyes went wide. “It’s that bad?”

 

“Naw,” Rick said. “Put pressure on that.”

 

Rick left. Morty pressed his wound. Rick wasn’t gonna do anything, he wouldn’t, and Summer would interrupt if he did. Everything was fine.

 

Rick came back with the injector, a yellow serum already loaded into it. He set it on the counter before leaning over Morty, grabbing the sponge, and handing it to him. “Now clean it.”

 

Morty looked under the towel. It was still bleeding. “But you just said—“

 

“That was before we had the medicine, Morty, keep up.” Rick tore the towel away from him. “You should know the drill by now since you’re, you’re always getting injured. Like, c’mon, aren’t you tired of this?”

 

Morty clenched his teeth. “So it’s my fault now? I was following your lead, Rick!”

 

“Exactly! I’m completely fine and I pulled the same shit.”

 

“Cause you had a gun,” Morty yelled. “And and your legs are longer, I can’t run as fast as you, Rick, let alone as fast as dinosaurs my size!”

 

Rick crossed his arms and leaned against the counter. "I let you have the break you wanted, dipshit, you're really gonna complain about something that takes five minutes to fix? Cause my patience is running real fucking thin, Morty." Rick finished with a glare. Morty looked away with the excuse of cleaning his wounds.

 

Rick stood straight once the water ran clear. “Take your pants off.”

 

Morty’s heart sped. “What?”

 

“The medicine’s gonna regrow the chunk missing from your leg. It’ll grow around the fabric if it’s still in the wound, so take your pants off.”

 

Oh. That made sense. Morty tried to slide the pants down more, but they were soaked and sticking to his skin. His jeans brushed the wound and he gasped.

 

Rick grabbed the scissors from the medicine cabinet and kneeled with a groan. “Spin towards me.”

 

Morty grabbed Rick’s shoulder to steady himself, then used his good leg to pivot. There was alcohol on Rick’s breath like always. It wasn’t strong, not like when Rick molested him, but Rick was in his space and Morty couldn’t help but tense up.

 

Rick met his eyes. Morty looked away. Rick began cutting his pants off of him. The scissors were cold. Rick’s hand bumped Morty’s thigh as he cut, the other peeling fabric off. The tough was light. Morty squirmed. Rick gripped his leg tight to still it. “What the fuck is your problem?”

 

Morty crossed his arms. “God, Rick, I don’t know, maybe the chunk out of my leg?”

 

“You’re fine,” Rick said. “So what’s with, what’s with the dramatics, huh?”

 

“Do you even actually care about the answer?”

 

Rick didn’t look up from his work. His work was Morty’s thigh, he was focusing on Morty’s thigh more than his words.

 

Morty shoved Rick away.

 

Rick didn’t land on his ass, but it was a near thing. “Morty, what the fuck?”

 

“Give me the scissors, Rick, I’ll do it.”

 

“Just let me—“

 

“I’m uncomfortable,” Morty said. “We’re, I’m, I don’t like bathrooms and it’s a tight space and I can’t fight back like this—“

 

“Fight what? I’m the only one—”

 

Morty squeezed his eyes shut. “And I know it’s stupid, call me a pussy all you want, but you asked! You asked, so I told you, and I don’t care that you don’t really care, just give me the damn scissors and I’ll fix it myself, alright?”

 

Silence. Morty realized he was cowering. A human ball with his hands covering his head as he sat on the side of the tub. He opened his eyes to find Rick standing over him, the scissors in his outstretched hand.

 

Morty took them. His hands were trembling, but he got to work on the fabric still around his calf.

 

Rick sat on the toilet. “Do you wanna forget?”

 

“No.”

 

“The jellybean thing,” Rick clarified. “I can—“

 

“I said no,” Morty snapped. The scissors weren’t meant for clothing. Morty had to open and close them several times to break through the threads of denim. Maybe that was why Rick was focusing so intensely on his thigh. Maybe it had been out of frustration and nothing else.

 

Rick stared at the ground, elbows on his knees. “It’s not just the jellybean guy, is it.”

 

Morty kept working at the denim. Rick was a very ‘it goes without saying’ type of person. If he let him glean what he could from the silence, Morty might make it through this with his memory intact.

 

Rick sighed, head sinking into his hands.

 

“I’m not as, as stupid as people, everyone, thinks, Rick.” Because Morty wasn’t like him. Talking. Attempting to talk made him feel better, usually. He just wanted to talk about it. “You really think I can’t, couldn’t put it together? You’re not thorough, e-especially when you’re drunk. You leave evidence.”

 

“When, uh. When did you realize?”

 

“I-I-I think I’ve suspected awhile? I tried not to think about it, but, uh. I couldn’t ignore it after the flask.” Morty finally cut through his pants. “Just... why?”

 

Rick stood. He was a good foot taller than him when they were both standing, but it more than doubled with Morty in the position he was. Morty refused to cower. Not again, the first time was embarrassing enough.

 

Rick grabbed the medicine off the counter and passed it to Morty. His hand shook as he took it, but Rick didn’t comment on it.

 

He didn’t comment on anything. He just left, closing the door behind him.

 

Chapter Text

Morty watched his flesh regrow. The wound bubbled and foamed as his cells divided and multiplied on a microscopic level egged on by the medicine. He knew from experience that it’d look good as new in ten minutes time. He’d probably be fit to walk in five.

 

Rick would be back by then. And while Morty could force himself up, could crawl or butt scoot to his room or Summer’s, could probably jump out a window if he felt so inclined, he didn’t. He didn’t have it in him to do anything but sit on the side of the tub and watch his flesh heal.

 

Ignorance was bliss, after all, and fighting Rick didn’t do shit. Starting any minute, the next incident would feel like the first. It would always feel like the first. He’d let Rick in, trust him. The touch would take him by surprise. He’d find evidence over weeks and months, maybe even years. He’d brush it off, ignore it. Eventually, the suspicion would wear him down. How many times had it worn him down?

 

His flesh was mostly healed, the pain was mostly gone. He listened for Rick, but no one came up the stairs. He should’ve been back with the memory gun. Something was holding him up.

 

Morty poked his head out of the bathroom door. All clear. He stumbled across the hallway and yanked Summer’s door opened without knocking. The lights were off. Summer’s backpack laid on her bed, half-opened. He dug through it. Found the notebook. Found a pen. Her writing caught his attention, but he flipped to the next blank page instead of reading. Rick could come back and if he found the notebook…

 

He filled a page. Then another. His handwriting was too quick. Too shaky. He couldn’t read half the words he wrote, but he had to write something. He had to do it before the stairs creaked.

 

“Morty,” Mom called from downstairs. “Dinner.”

 

It wasn’t enough. Words would never be enough, but he put it back, flicked the light off, and went. There were french toast and omelets on the table, everyone already eating. Morty wasn’t hungry, but he dished himself an omelet.

 

Summer was seated next to Rick, so Morty sat at the head of the table with her and Mom closest to him. The omelet was a dark orange-red in color. Morty twirled it around his plate as he tried to catch Summer’s eye. Her lips thinned when she caught the stare. “How’s the omelet?”

 

“Fine,” he said, spooning a forkful into his mouth. His eyes shot wide. “Oh my god,” he moaned. A thousand little details of flavor burst his tongue, yolky and savory and a hint of cream.

 

Rick grinned. “Worth it, right Morty?”

 

Morty nodded, spooning more into his mouth.

 

Mom smiled. “I didn’t even have to season it, that flavor’s already in there. Very convenient. There’s a lot of egg left, I was gonna try and make egg drop soup with it tomorrow.”

 

“That sounds great,” Morty said. He grabbed a piece of french toast and another omelet.

 

“Yeah, you’re welcome,” Rick said. “You gotta, gotta admit, I mean not to brag, but I’m awesome. I bring a lot to this family, don’t I.”

 

Mom shook her head, a chuckle on her breath. “I don’t know what we’d do without you, Dad.”

 

Rick grinned, eyes flicking towards him. Morty changed the grip he had on his fork.

 

“Yeah we do,” Summer cut in. “I mean, no offense Grandpa Rick, but we managed just fine without you before. It might suck if you left, but I’d like to believe we’d be okay. I mean, I’ll be out of the house soon. I think I’ll be fine managing on my own.”

 

Mom frowned. “You don’t have to ruin a good moment with technicalities, Summer.”

 

“Yeah,” Rick said. “Talk about selfish, making it all about yourself.”

 

Summer looked them both in the eye and ate the french toast piece off of her fork. “I’m just saying codependency isn’t healthy.”

 

A tense silence followed. Morty tried to eat what he’d added to his plate, but he wasn’t in the mood anymore. Rick was right; He brought a lot to their lives, way more than Morty did. The only one lower than Morty on the family totem pole was Dad and he didn’t even live with them anymore.

 

“Hey, Morty,” Summer said. “You still want help with your math homework?”

 

He never asked for help on his math homework. “Sure.”

 

Summer stood with her dishes so Morty followed suit, plate still full.

 

“Don’t waste your food,” Mom said.

 

Rick’s eyes lit up. “I’ll take it!”

 

Morty handed him the plate, grabbed his backpack from the couch, and followed Summer up to her room. 

 

She shut the door behind them. “What happened?”

 

“Nothing!”

 

“Bullshit. Do you remember—“

 

Morty flinched. “Yes, yes, I remember! Nothing happened. He fixed my leg, see? Good as new like always.” He tossed his bag down and sat in Summer’s desk chair. “But check in tomorrow. Just in case.”

 

Summer groaned. “What’d you do?”

 

Morty balled his fists. “Why’s it always my fault? He’s a genius, you think he can’t figure shit out? Y-y-you think he, he can’t tell? When something’s off or whatever?”

 

“Well, going on adventures and throwing angry eyes at me during dinner doesn’t help. I can’t babysit you without looking suspicious and I can’t help you if he takes mine, too.”

 

Morty deflated. “What’s it even matter? It’s hopeless anyways.”

 

“So you’re gonna give up and just let it happen?”

 

Morty’s spine shot straight. The drool. The green goop that was Jellybean blood. It ghosted his skin. “N-no.” But he was, wasn’t he. “No. No, I’m gonna. Well, I’ll fight when it happens.” He wasn’t sure he could do to Rick what he did to Mr. Jellybean.

 

Summer, he could tell, didn’t trust it either. She sighed, falling back onto her bed. “Write in the book.”

 

“Already did.” God, he hoped she wouldn’t read it. She didn’t need that shit in her head.

 

They sat together awhile, Morty staring off into space as Summer did whatever on her phone, both of them pretending things were normal and okay.

 

 

***

 

 

Morty woke the next morning memory intact.

 

He searched his room for anything out of place. Jiz, a spot of spilled booze, a disturbed floor shirt. Nothing indicated that Rick had been in the room.

 

Heart pounding, Morty peeked into Rick’s room. His bed was empty, but there were still half bottles of booze on his nightstand. He checked the kitchen next. Then the garage. The spaceship was gone, but Rick’s in progress inventions still littered the area, so he hadn’t left either. Not permanently, anyway.

 

Morty sat on the garage steps. He shouldn’t have been relieved by that, but he was. He didn’t want Rick to leave. He wanted the... molesting to stop for sure, but really it wasn’t that bad. He didn’t want Rick to leave.

 

Morty sat up and forced himself to take a slow breath. He had his memories. That meant something, that meant Rick... cared? Felt guilty? He was probably excessively drinking somewhere. Probably hating himself. Hating himself for touching Morty? Hating himself for getting caught?

 

Morty stared at the cement floor. Rick was giving him a chance… Maybe Rick wanted him to fix it. 



***



Morty was just about to walk into his 7th-period class when Rick came around the corner, hand up for a high five. “Morty, my man!”

 

Morty gave him a wide berth. “H-hey, Rick.” He looked Rick over, gauging his drunkenness. His eyes were a bit too loose, but his gait was normal. High, maybe? “What’s up?”

 

Rick grinned. “You up for an adventure, Morty? Or, or Blitz and Chips? I could go for some Blitz and Chips.”

 

Well, he wasn’t neutrino bomb level drunk. “Blitz and Chips aren’t gonna... I-I’m not going anywhere. Not until we talk about this.”

 

Rick shifted his weight to his other foot and glanced around. The hallway was clearing out, the bell bound to ring any second. “You al-already tried that, remember? And, and you got, what, four days in be-before you forgot? You think I can’t wait you out?”

 

 Morty had to be stern and in charge. Rick was in the wrong, in the dog house. Morty couldn’t let a weak threat throw him off. “It stops now, Rick. The... thing. It, it stops now.”

 

The bell rang. Rick crossed his arms. “You really wanna talk about this here?”

 

“Well, I can’t really talk extensively about it.” He glared at Rick, who kept his gaze steady. “And if you wanna then we can go home or something, but you never, never usually, with this type of shit. So.” Morty shrugged.

 

Rick stared off, bored. He didn’t reach for the portal gun. “Just say your piece, Morty.”

 

Morty sighed. “Just. Just do what you gotta do to keep it from happening again. So we can go back to normal. If you need to get drunk, get drunk, but not around me. If you. If you need to rent yourself a whore or something, or a robot that doesn’t spew out babies, do it. Okay?”

 

Rick cleared his throat. “Yeah. So you wanna go on an adventure or what?”

 

“Yeah. Yeah, Rick, I’d like that.”

 

It was a normal adventure. They were back to normal. And if Rick’s hand knocked into Morty’s hip when they were walking, well, accidents happened and at least Morty remembered them.



***



Morty was half asleep when a glowing green lit his room. He squeezed his eyes shut and flipped over, nausea rising. “Rick, we agreed—“

 

A hand latched onto his ankle and pulled. Morty yelped as he fell through his floor and onto the kitchen table, the portal disappearing from where it floated above him.

 

Rick hopped down, nearly hitting his head on a chair as he flailed. Drunk. What a shocker. Morty sat up, eyes sharp for a memory gun. “What the hell—“

 

“Shhhh,” Rick said, pressing a finger to Morty’s lips. He pushed Morty’s back flat against the table and began climbing on top.

 

Morty shoved, flailed, but Rick was heavy. Morty continued to bat at him. “You said you wouldn’t do this anymore.”

 

It took some fumbling, but Rick’s fingers curled into his arms and pinned them to the table. The booze was hot on his breath, but not heavy like it usually was. “You-you think you can control me? You’re just, just brainwaves, just a Morty. I’m the, the one in the charge, bitch.”

 

Morty kicked up, but Rick was pinning his legs. “Well, well, you’re. I’m not controlling you, Rick, you, you don’t really wanna do this. I-I know it takes time to. To break habits or, or whatever, but there’s a reason, right? That you didn’t erase my, my memory. You—“ Rick grabbed his crotch. Morty yelped. “You want me to make you stop!”

 

Rick squeezed his dick hard. Too hard. “You think I-I need to?” He slid his hand passed Morty’s bed pants. Passed his underwear. Morty squirmed. “You’re family’s upstairs sleeping. Why not, why don’t you call out? Huh, Morty?”

 

Morty swallowed. “I will. I’m giving you a, a chance to stop.”

 

Rick chuckled. “You never call out. Cause I’m, cause you’d miss me too much?” He pulled Morty’s pants down, underwear and all. “Cause you like it?”

 

“I don’t,” Morty said. A power trip. That’s what this was, what Morty was. Rick was seeing how far he could get. “You’re sick.”

 

“Planetary mindset.” Rick dug into his lab coat pocket and pulled out a container of lube. He wormed out of his own pants, kicking them to the floor with his legs as he pulled Morty’s back to his chest. Morty clawed at Rick’s arms, then his face. Rick adjusted his grip so Morty’s arms were pinned with the rest of him.

 

Not on the table. Rick ruined his bedroom, his shower. The thought of eating breakfast the next morning with his family and with Rick smirking at him, it pushed him over the edge. “Stop,” Morty managed. Then louder. “Stop it, Rick!”

 

Rick covered his mouth. Morty kicked. Thrashed. It made noise, more than two knocks would, but Rick continued to lube his dick and line it up, undeterred.

 

It penetrated. Morty’s eyes flew wide and he screamed into Rick’s hand. Continued to thrash. “Shh,” Rick said, “You’re okay, Morty. Hurts less if you’re still, Morty.”

 

Morty closed his eyes and tried to relax. It was difficult to breathe through the hand and the tears. Rick’s hips wouldn’t stop thrusting, he wanted them to stop, he wanted Rick to stop.

 

The kitchen light snapped on. Rick paused. Morty opened his eyes to Summer standing by the light switch. It only took a heartbeat for her to rush towards them and grab Morty, yanking his arm. He fell to his knees on the kitchen floor and struggled to stand. His pants trapped his ankles, tripped him, but he managed to get his legs under himself, Summer yanking him behind her. “What the fuck, Grandpa Rick! What the actual fuck!”

 

Rick slid off the table, not even bothering to cover his junk. Summer shielded her eyes. Rick reached into his lab coat pocket and Morty pulled at Summer. They needed to go. They needed to run before they forgot. Before it happened again and again.

 

Rick paused, eyes looking passed them. Morty whipped around. Mom was on the stairs, hands covering her mouth.