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Feelin' Good

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Papyrus had just finished his energizing cover of Don’t Stop Believing and managed to retrieve the microphone that he accidentally sent flying into the audience before turning to the sign up sheet to announce the next singer. Friday nights had turned into a local karaoke night that all the skeleton brothers would show up to share some entertainment and a drink. It had been a rounding success as all the brothers would show and some like Blue, Papyrus, Stretch, and even the occasional sans would take hold of the microphone and belt out a tune or two.

Tonight there’d be an extra singer, though.

“NEXT AMAZING SINGER UP IS....QUIET ME?”

The entire group went silent as their gaze fell upon the skeleton calmly smoking in the corner of one of the booths. One hand held the cigarette up to his mouth while the other was being held by a bright haired woman. The woman smiled and whispered something into his hood and a smile smirk spread across Rus’ lips as he blew out the colored smoke in wisps. Rus extinguished the cigarette and pulled his long legs out of the booth and stood, stretching out the kinks. 

“RUS, YOU’RE REALLY GOING TO SING FOR US?! THIS IS SUPERB! I HAD NO IDEA YOU COULD SING, TOO” 

Blue’s starry eye lights were glowing with excitement as he and Papyrus started clapping happily. Rus’ brother said nothing and continued to sip his wine, though a glint sparkled across his eye lights and if you were to look close enough, a similar smirk flashed across his face. Stretch and sans gave a lazy thumbs up while Red and Edge merely waited for the “show” to start with indifferent expression. 

Rus turned to give his mate a kiss on the cheek before shuffling up to the stage. He fiddled with the MTT karaoke machine and slipped in a tape that he got from his inventory and moved to the mic stand. Raising it to his preferred height, he gently lowered his hood and stared into the crowd. Blue and Papyrus were shouting words of encouragement as the others seemed to settle in for the so called “quiet one’s” show. Some faces showed signs that they thought this would be a disaster, but he paid them no mind. He only had eyes for his loved as she smiled back and mouthed the words, “knock ‘em dead.”

His soul pulsed beneath his rib cage and he turned to let Grillby know to start the tape. He bowed his head as it started and soft violin notes echoed through the speakers and Rus then raised his head, sockets closed and began to softly sing into the microphone.

Birds flying high

You know how I feel

Sun in the sky

You know how I feel

Reeds driftin' on by

You know how I feel

The violin was quiet in the background compared to Rus’ voice as it echoed through the bar, capturing everyone’s attention. His voice was warm and inviting as he held the microphone and crooned into it. Razz glanced around to everyone and his grin spread across his face. He knew the majority of the skeletons had no idea what they were about to witness, but he was sure that by the end of the night, several of them would be owing him coin and drink. He stared at Rus’ mate and for a moment softened at how she looked at him. He worried when his brother brought home a human, but soon came to realize that she was the one for him. The choice of song was perfect and he raised a glass to toast his brother. 

It's a new dawn

It's a new day

It's a new life

For me

Rus’ voice grew a little louder, a little bolder as the accompaniment of horns joined with the violins between the lyrics and then died away to a small pause as his voice dipped lower.

 

And I'm feeling... good

 

Suddenly, what seemed like an entire big band ensemble started up and his left eye socket snapped open at the first beat, revealing dark orange magic wisping upwards. The loud introduction paired with his clothing changing before the audience’s very eyes, the dark hooded jacket with tank top seeming to melt away to reveal a dark orange jacket with a crisp white dress shirt and brown tie, the ripped jeans transformed into snappy dress pants of the same color and his dirty sneakers vanished leaving a shiny pair of brown dress shoes in their place. Rus voice playfully chuckled into the microphone as he tightened his tie and smoothed out his outfit, reveling in the ecstatic hollering of Blue and Papyrus.

 

I'm feeling good...

 

The horns crescendo-ed to their peak and then fell away, leaving the piano to keep the beat as Rus began to snap his fingers and encourage the audience to do so as well and keep it going. The cigarette that was in Stretch’s mouth dropped to the floor and several shot glasses crashed to the ground as the other four skeletons stared at the suave skeleton with their jaws open wide. His mate whooped and hollered for him and Rus swayed with the music and finally opened his other socket and continued.

Fish in the sea

You know how I feel

River running free

You know how I feel

Blossom on the tree

You know how I feel

Rus’ arms lifted and his magic enveloped his fingertips and he sent it into the crowd. It twirled and wisped around the bar patrons, taking on the form of fish, rolling rivers, and even blossom petals falling from a tree, much to the delight of everyone. The fish swirled around Blue and Papyrus, the rivers cascaded around Stretch and Blue, and the Fell brothers quickly brushed away the foreign magic that was dropping the petals onto their skulls. He pushed a little extra magic towards his mate and watched with glee as she shivered under its twining power. 

It's a new dawn

It's a new day

It's a new life

For me

And I'm feeling good

Razz couldn’t have been happier. Most doubted his brother had the capability to manipulate his magic so flawlessly being his quiet nature and the sheer lack of using it, but they were all so very wrong. Rus was making this all happen with less than a fraction of his magic usage, not even so much as breaking a sweat. He felt the suit was a bit much, but then again when did his brother not go overboard in his shenanigans? He held his phone up and took several shots of the magic interacting with the others and decided he would keep them...for future purposes, and then sat back to enjoy the rest of the show.

Dragonfly out in the sun, you know what I mean, don't you know

Butterflies all havin' fun, you know what I mean

Sleep in peace when the day is done, that's what I mean

His magic shifted and soon the room was filled with buzzing dragonflies and fluttering butterflies. He let a butterfly land on one of his fingertips and then blew on it and watched as it turned into several zzz’s, strangely enough floating straight to Stretch and sans as he winked at them. Their own butterflies and dragonflies turned to zzz’s and they smirked and winked back. Snoozebros for life. 

And this old world is a new world

And a bold world

For me

For me

His voice rose with the music and he grabbed the microphone and gestured to himself as he sang the lyrics with such passion. With the last line, the music paused and he snapped his fingers, the magic dissipating and his mate suddenly appearing on stage, her outfit changed to a sultry dress and as the instruments resumed, began to dance and twirl her around. The patrons of the bar clapped and hollered as he effectively pulled and maneuvered her with the beat. The skeleton brothers who weren’t already on their feet cheering, were at least clapping with thinly veiled amusement.

Stars when you shine

You know how I feel

Scent of the pine

You know how I feel

Oh freedom is ours

And you know how I feel

Rus twirled his love once more before returning to the mic as his magic exploded across the ceiling in brilliant cosmos and stars. Each word poured forth from his soul in beautiful fashion, this song truly having an effect on him as a small trail of orange tears dripped down his face. Changing two seemed to have an effect on the skeletons as they too seemed to tear up, even the Fell brothers were affected as they tried to hide wiping them from their face before they streaked.

It's a new dawn

It's a new day

It's a new life

It's a new dawn

It's a new day

It's a new life

It's a new life

For me

The music was coming to a head, signalling that this was nearing the end as Rus removed the microphone and really gave it his all, this time his magic conjured up as all the figures he had created and they mingled with the crowd, just creating wonderful chaos as he reached his climax. He strutted and danced, throwing his normally very inactive body into the lyrics until the outro began to slow and he pulled himself back together, straightening his tie, smoothing out his suit and reaching for his love to pull her close for a slow dance.

And I'm feeling good

I'm feeling good

I'm feeling so good

I feel so good

His voice softened, his body movements slowed and with the last note, dipped his love over and pulled her into a soft kiss and his magic disappeared in a shower of sparkles, leaving him in his hooded jacket and jeans. The bar all but erupted into thunderous applause as Rus blinked several times and came to his senses, pulling his mate back up and throwing his hood up. There was a deep orange flush across his cheekbones as his mate hugged him tight. They were quickly picked up by a boisterous Blue and then further picked up by Papyrus.

“QUIET-ME, THAT WAS SIMPLY THE BEST THING I HAVE EVER WITNESSED. ONE WOULD SAY THAT YOU WERE...GREAT!”

“AGREED. YOU WERE MAGNIFICENT, RUS! YOU MUST SING AGAIN WITH US!”

Rus sputtered as he was sure he heard a rib creak when sans came up to his brother, “easy there, Paps. He can’t sing if you break his ribs from one of your great hugs.”

Papyrus gasped and quickly let the three go and Rus quickly murmured a thank you before saying he needed to step outside for some air. The brothers understood and made sure he and his mate had a clear way to the alley where Rus lit up a cigarette and let out a huge sigh of relief. That was one of the most anxiety ridden things he’d ever done, but even as his soul continued to beat against his ribs, there was an underlying warmth that coursed through him. It felt good to be able to do that and from the excited babble of his love, she no doubt enjoyed it, too.

The side door suddenly came open with a bang and Red, Edge, and his brother came filing out. Red pulled a cigar out of his jacket, bit the tip off and spit it into a nearby trashcan before lighting up and for once smiling warmly. “fuck, man. i thought yer bro was full of shit when he said yer a songbird. gotta say, that was worth losing the 500G fer.” 

A swift smack to the back of the skull had him wincing as Edge spoke up, “What my brother means to say is that your performance...was excellent. The bet that was made was not in ill will against you, but it appears that your brother has ensured that all proceeds will be going to that pound you work at. Now, while this has been most entertaining, we must depart for the night. Red and I have community service tomorrow morning.”

“aw, Boss, c’mon-AUGH!”

A rare smile swiftly made its way across Edge’s face before disappearing into his usual scowl. He pulled Red by his hood and they made their way back to the house. Meanwhile, Razz just stared at his brother, his arms crossed. They said nothing until Razz finally broke the silence, “That Was...Amazing, Brother. The Suit Was A Bit Much For My Taste, But I Digress. You Performed Well And We Made A Good Amount Of Money For The Shelter.”

“thank you, m’lord.”

Razz waved his hand, “None Of That.You Long Earned My Respect Years Ago”

Rus smiled as his brother grinned and then complimented his woman on her dancing and then made his way back inside the loud bar. He decided to stay a bit longer in the cold, admiring the dark sky that was brightened by the various stars. It had been a long time since he’d been truly happy, but he could agree that his life was pretty amazing right now.

 

He felt damn good.