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John Egbert and the Saddest Movie Marathon Ever

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-- ectoBiologist [EB] started pestering arachnidsGrip [AG] at 04:21 --

EB: hey!
EB: so
EB: ...
EB: oh, geez, this is stupid.
EB: rose would have so many things to say if she could see me talking to you like this.
EB: there would be so many big words!
EB: blah blah grieving process blah blah i just read a whole lot of books and i am going to repeat them at you, john, because it makes me sound too smart to care.
EB: rose cares, though! she cares a lot, even when she tries her hardest not to act like it.
EB: she reminds me of you that way.
EB: like, you try to act tough, but you are actually really nerdy and dorky and nice!
EB: or were, i guess.
EB: ):
EB: anyway, i guess i just wanted to say i miss you a lot! even though you killed a lot of people and had some really stupid ideas about being a hero and things like that
EB: you were actually pretty cool.
EB: ohhh man, you would have loved con air so much.
EB: i had our whole d8
EB: i mean, date
EB: planned out!
EB: i had a whole list of movies we were gonna watch, and i put them all in order and everything.
EB: i have all the nic cage movies, did you know?
EB: allllllll of them. :P
EB: i haven't watched them since the reset, though.
EB: it just seems...weird, i guess.
EB: bluhhhhh, this is really dumb! i wish we could talk for real.


***

 

A man knows what needs to be done, but you put it off as long as possible. The films sit there, sadly, abandoned, in the corner of the room for weeks after you first arrive at Rose's; maybe it's your imagination, but they even seem to droop a little. You ignore them as hard as you can! Movies don't get a say in this, no matter how awesome or dejected they are.

Then one day you wake up from a nightmare, screaming "You can't make me!" into Rose's ear.

She rubs at her eyes. "John--what--"

"I don't care if Nic Cage is stuck in the television, Karkat, I'm not moving and you can't--"

Oh.

Kanaya looks at you with some concern. Karkat just mutters something about diaper-headed dipshittery and rolls over.

You decide enough is enough.

Rose's house has a guestroom you clear out for the purpose. You shove all the furniture aside and cover the floor with cushions (this is going to be a hardcore movie marathon); you pop three packages of microwave popcorn. Lastly, you bring in the movies, lining them up in the exact order you'd decided on so many months previous. You take a moment to admire your handiwork: perfect, you decide with a satisfied nod.

She would have loved it.

egbert this is the girliest thing youve ever done and that includes the incident with the dress and the pearls, Dave says.

I understand your distress, but this really isn't a healthy coping mechanism, Rose says.

Jade hovers over you and mutters some things about feelings jams, whatever that's supposed to mean! Karkat doesn't say anything at all. You like to think it's because you and he have some kind of buddychief synergy and he, alone, understands the gravity and necessity of the task before you.

You watch movies.

You watch movies harder than you have ever watched before.

 

***

 

You're halfway through City of Angels, the pillow in your arms by now a mushy, teary mess, when you hear the doorknob turn. "I'm fine, Rose," you sigh. "They're just movies--"

"Your tears taste watery," says Terezi.

Oh. "It's a sad movie!" You wipe at your eyes. "See, Nic Cage plays the restless angel who watches over the humans, but he doesn't really know what it means to feel until--"

She doesn't seem to be listening all that carefully. She comes and sits down beside you, peering right into your face, and you reflect that even excepting that whole part where she kind of killed you, Terezi Pyrope is sort of creepy. "Uhh," you say.

For once, her expression is very serious. "Vriska used to do this all the time, too," she says. "When we watched movies and played games together, she would always be sniffling at the sad parts! She tried to hide it--she yelled and yelled when you asked what she was doing--but I could always tell."

You know--Karkat told you, finally, looking exhausted and very, very sick--that Terezi killed Vriska, stabbing her through the chest as she flew off to go fight the demon she'd created. You know that they were bitter rivals, or that Vriska considered them bitter rivals--you also know, from asides and snatches of conversation here and there, that they were once friends.

"You liked her, right, John?" Uncharacteristically, the grin has not yet returned to her face. It makes her look kind of weird. "I think she liked you too."

It's okay, Meg Ryan is saying, in the distance. We fit together.

 

***

 

You let the movie run out, and stay up talking with Terezi instead. She tells you stories, her face contracted strangely--she doesn't look like she relishes the telling at all, but she doesn't let you interrupt her, either. You get the impression she's here as much for herself as for you.

When she falls silent, you start up with a few tales of your own, even though it feels dumb, almost like if she started telling you all about what kind of person Dave was. Bit by bit, the two of you piece a life together.

By the time you finish, the sun's already peeking over the horizon.

 

***

 

EB: so in conclusion
EB: after thinking about it a long time
EB: i have decided!
EB: i have decided that it's going to be okay.
EB: and i hope you are okay with the fact that it's going to be okay, because like i said, you are pretty cool and i really wanted to meet you.
EB: <33333333
EB: man, i am going to miss you a lot.

-- ectoBiologist [EB] ceased pestering arachnidsGrip [AG] at 07:34 --