Chapter 1: Welcome to the Crew
Don't tell the gods I left a mess
I can't undo what has been done
Let's run for cover
What if I'm the only hero left
You better fire off your gun
Once and forever
"Good ol' six fingers! I've been waiting an ėͫt̵e͐҉r̄̅̄̆̄͂͗nͤ̈́̍̾̃i̓̃ͤ͗tͫ̄͛ͩ͆yͬ̓ to have a chat face to face." Stanford tried to struggle free from the wreckage, but even if he could unpin his legs from the concrete laying over them, he could never escape the reach of Bill's power. It easily lifted him from the bell tower and put him on display. Oh― of course. None of this would have happened without Stanford Pines after all, he was literally the guest of honor for the Oddpocalypse. And boy oh boy did Bill Cipher want everyone to know it. No longer restricted to the mindscape, he could feel the old man's heart beating rapidly in his chest as he panicked, thrashed and tried to wriggle free from his grasp. How exciting! Of course, even as he focused on Ford, he knew that Pine tree was still around somewhere, and an idea popped into his mind. Didn't the kid practically idolize the "legendary" Author of the Journals? Oh, oh, yes this was going to be fun!
"Aw, don't look so sour Fordsy, it's not too late to join me~" Bill taunted, words venom as he recalled how much Ford used to idolize him in the past. His favorite human, his favorite tool. "With that extra finger, you'll fit right in with the rest of my freaks!" Excellent, the stage was set, he knew that Ford was nothing if not stubborn. He'd fight back and then Bill could flaunt his power in front of the weak sapling, making sure to demoralize the kid for good and erase that possible threat down the line. It was a very unlikely future, but it was still there, and as long as Stanford said no, it was even less likely to happen.
Stanford looked down at his hands, six digits meeting his gaze and reminding him of every teasing and jeering insult he'd been thrown as a child. All the feelings of isolation that drove him to seek out the abnormal in the first place. Glancing up at Bill he could feel resentful words forming on his tongue when he spotted Dipper peeking out from behind the melted old Northwest statue. No. This was all a trap. If he was hurt, Dipper might reveal himself, and would play right into Cipher's hands. He couldn't let that happen! He had to think... he had to do something unexpected. He had to― "All right."
Bill stopped, the flow of energy in his new physical form stuttering for a moment. "What?" The tiny human looked up at him with DETERMINATION in his brown eyes. Stanford could do this, he could buy his nephew time to find out Bill's weakness. He could infiltrate the enemy from the inside and help them sabotage him later... He could be the Hero.
"Okay Bill, I'll join you."
The words surprised the triangle and it wasn't all that easy to contain it! "What, really?" Cogs turned around inside Bill's vast mind, thoughts and predictions running rampant. There was a slight tingle of excitement growing as he evaluated this newfound development. Boy, did Stanford know how to keep the game interesting! This could work... Yes, maybe even better than what he had in mind at first. The sight of the human's determination and eye contact told him instantly what he was getting at with this plan of his, and YES this would be fun!
The sudden flicker of Bill's glow alerted Stanford to the fact that he was indeed surprised and had not expected that reply. Good, very good. To best Cipher, you had to think like him; in other words, be unpredictable. "Yes, really." Stanford repeated and he looked around briefly at the various monsters surrounding him. They looked more excited by this than Bill, but then again they had not expected him to decline. "You're right, I made all of this possible by building the portal." Stanford forced himself to keep all of their attention on him as he noticed Dipper peeking out from behind the statue. He couldn't let them see him! If they did, Bill would not only dispose of the child but also his years upon years of research! He entrusted the journals to Dipper to save them and give him a chance at figuring out Bill's weakness after all, he couldn't do that without his journals. "It is my greatest triumph, isn't it?"
"For someone so small to make something so powerful, well I gotta say it's impressive!" Teeth said and Kryptos nodded beside him by bobbing up and down.
Who was he kidding, it would have been pretty boring had Stanford not accepted his proposal, right? Judging by some of the futures slipping away now he would have become a golden statue; some kind of backscratcher and geez, that didn't even sound like a funny joke! Man, he would have been kind of annoyed if he had refused him... Sure he didn’t exactly expect this but honestly it was a way more interesting move on Stanford’s part. "It sure is! The man who changed the world, remember?"
"That sounds like me all right..." Stanford gave a somewhat forced wry smile. That memory still haunted him because of how true it was. Bill never lied about that apparently. Focus... Focus! He had to get them all out of here somehow... Dipper had to be able to escape safely. He'd be smart enough to understand the situation. They could do this! It was a little distracting how appraisingly the monsters looked at him though, he couldn't deny it made him feel a bit stronger. "I'm guessing that floating pyramid is your design?"
"Aw, what gave it away?" Bill laughed at that and rubbed his hands together. "As the new ruler of this realm, I gotta have the sweetest crib y'know." The demigod noticed how eager everyone looked and crinkled his eye as if smiling. "Considerin' we have a new member, we better throw ya the best VIP party of the century! Oh, and also we gotta change your look, those clothes are not material fit to roll with my crew. Uh-uh." Bill heard Pyronica mention how cute his size was and he couldn't help but inwardly agree. His Fordsy was really adorable when he could almost fit in the palm of his hand!
It wasn't difficult to keep the attention of the monster crew on him. Apparently just building the portal elevated him in their eyes (or lack of eyes in a few cases) to 'cool guy'. Not to mention whatever else Bill had told them about him. And well, that was an... interesting thought. Stanford didn't really know much about the other entities Bill brought along from the nightmare realm, and he certainly hadn't considered that Bill might gossip about him with anyone else. A small part of him couldn’t help but revel in the idea. If it was anything... it had to be good, judging by their reactions. Even after everything; the Portal, the metal plate... Bill Cipher had good things to say about Stanford Pines? Emotions rose to the top that he hadn't experienced in over twenty years and Ford really wasn't sure how to take it.
"Oh yeah, before I forget... Where's your little mini-me?"
Any warm feelings he might have had vanished at the mention of Dipper. No! He couldn't afford to let Bill take his great-nephew, he had to escape with his journals. Think, Ford, think! He had to appeal to Bill's inflated ego. "I sent him away!" He shouted, hesitating when all eyes swing back toward him. "Dipper― I couldn't risk him getting hurt." Stanford had to make this believable, he had to focus on selling this lie to Cipher. "Kid's got a lot of grit, he'd try to take you on, he's... He's a smart boy but he thinks he can fight you somehow―" Oh, no that's too obvious, Bill definitely looked suspicious. Ford bit at his lip and attempted to not notice or cringe at the distant screams. "He's just a child. He can't understand what we were― Are, and he doesn't know that sometimes you have to give in." Yes, that was much better, Bill looked satisfied―
"Great Uncle Ford!" No, it couldn't be―! Stanford felt his stomach drop in horror as Bill turned around to look down at Dipper, who was standing atop a crashed car and hugging the bag to his chest. He was glaring up at the semi-omnipotent demon and showed the same resolve, the same lack of fear as when he’d faced the security droids. Ford might have been proud if he didn't fear so much for Dipper’s life right then. "What are you doing! Y-You said yourself that being a hero means facing odds that you aren't sure you can beat. That we could do this together..!"
Bill laughed at that, floating closer to Pine tree. Now THIS was getting entertaining! Ford wasn't really fooling him with his blatant fibbing, but having those very lies laid open so quickly, well now THAT was comedy! When the old man stuttered and hesitates he is quick to fill the silence. "Well well, isn't this interesting, we were ready for the party but looks like you meatbags brought the show to us, am I right?" The monsters cackle darkly, several eye-bats flitting down to circle Dipper, watching him. "Sorry Pine tree, but my deal with Fordsy ain't on the table, kiddo. You must be at least THIS tall to join my world-crashing party!" Bill laughed, aiming a finger at Dipper and blasting off his signature hat with a precise shot of energy that leaves the fabric smoldering. All humor vanished a second later and Bill's voice turned serious. "So how'sa ‘bout you fork over those Journals?"
"Bill, wait, let's be reasonable." Ford gasped when he is pulled forward and into Bill's open palm, the giant demon turning him over as he hum, pretending to think. The old man wished he didn't notice how odd it felt, how the digits were warm and weird.
"When have I ever been a being of reason, IQ? C'mon you know me better than that, or has age rotten through your think pan. Give me one good excuse why I shouldn't destroy your little diaries and the short-stack too." Now he had Ford trapped. He had every intention of getting rid of Pine tree once and for all, but he wanted to see if his human was clever enough to worm his way out of the situation. He wanted to see if Stanford would abandon his family now, like he had in the past.
"It... Why kill the chi― Dipper. It. Wouldn't it be far more cruel to let him struggle in this new world you've created, after all? He isn't a real threat to you now..." Ford watched Dipper's face drop and felt his heart shatter, but he hoped that was good enough, that Bill would buy it. He could still get his great-nephew time to figure out that weakness... He could keep them all safe! The triangle shrugged and snapped his fingers, the journals floating up out of Dipper's hands a moment before a powerful force hits him from the side, sending him tumbling off the car.
"Aww, you do care, that's touching.” The jeer all too present in his gleeful voice. “But I like your style Sixer, watching the kid squirm around in the dirt would be way funnier! Didn't think you had it in ya, but hey, this is you we're talking about!" Bill breaks out into laughter and lowered Stanford to the ground, his boots touching dirt the same moment he spotted Dipper running off panicked into the woods. Good. It was over, he'd make it, now he just had to deal with Bill and his 'friends'.
"Now then, let's do something about that outfit. Hmm. 8-ball?"
"Make it WEIRD!" The giant troll-monster shouted, pumping his fists toward the sky to the cheers of the other freaks.
"Knew there was a reason I kept you around buddy! How about a coat made out of eyelids?"
Stanford forced himself to keep his composure steady, he couldn't back down or show any weakness around these monsters! Despite how much he really wanted to fall down to his knees from exhaustion and worry. "Um, are you sure this is the best place for that?" It was quite dirty around… Ford flinched slightly as fingers reached down to ruffle his hair fondly, scratching at his scalp with a forced familiarity. For a moment, he could almost swear he felt his skin prickle uncomfortably when Bill's hand passed over the metal plate’s position.
"Hmm?" Bill froze his stroking for a moment, feeling a slight sting to his fingertips. Huh... Oh right! How could he have forgotten that annoying piece of metal!? Ugh, he had to remove it later. But actually he wanted Sixer to be okay with it. Even if it was in his fake-heroic sense of morals, it was more... Personal and satisfying that way, yes?
"Changing clothes... Is this place really appropriate for that?" Stanford didn't know what to think when those fingers ghosted over the metal plate, it was perplexing and quite a touchy treatment.
His comment apparently made everyone laugh, Bill cackled for a long while. "Oh man, who cares what's appropriate? Stanford, pal, this world is OURS now, we decide what is appropriate y'know." Human norms and morals never ceased to entertain him! Silly simple-minded apes pretending to be smart and proper. "Now how’s about those eyelids!?" The demigod was met with cheering and hooting and gave his favorite meatbag's trenchcoat a tap, transforming it. "Well?"
"Looks delicious!" Teeth replied, tongue watering.
"Is flesh really his colour?" Pyronica tapped her chin with a sizzling fire-gloved hand, contemplating the look. "And what are these things?" She reached out to touch the man's glasses. "Are they for protecting the skin or somethin'?"
"Maybe they're to look cool?" Hectorgon offered.
"N-No, they're for my eyes." Stanford explained and made sure the pink lady demon couldn't take his glasses off. He was too unnerved right now to actually look at what Bill had done with his trenchcoat... "They correct my sight so I can see properly."
"You're blind without them?"
"Nah, humans just have terrible limited senses in general and their eyes deteriorate as they grow older and therefore closer to their inevitable death. One life-span creatures and all, know what I mean?" That had his friends laughing again. Hm, he should probably give Fordsy better sight at some point, it would be difficult for him to join them in havoc hunting otherwise. Not to mention his size, sure it was cute and all, but not that practical for the activities on the schedule. "How about this then? Coat made out of slime from the inside of a manawyrm!" Bill snapped his fingers and placed his hands on his sides.
"Red is a good colour." Pacifier nodded.
"Whadd'ya think, sugar?" Pyronica asked the human as she circled him once to get a better look.
Stanford couldn't exactly stay silent anymore, plus he wasn't sure how to react after being called 'sugar'. "Well it's a bit difficult to move in..." He said and looked down at the strange jelly-like substance somehow keeping his... coat together? "It feels heavy and quite dense." The scientist continued and touched the surface of the red mass. Also there were no pockets, that almost annoyed him more. "Might I suggest something more practical... Perhaps onyx dragonhide. It's both fire-proof and moves well in water." He knew that by experience, not to mention dragonhide looked very good too and felt comfortable.
"Why not!" Bill changed his coat for the third time and looked upon the result curiously. Pretty good! The triangle glanced at the others for comments.
"I like the gleam! Dragonhide is very resistant to the elements." Keyhole grinned.
"Oooh, it feels nice~" The flaming demoness spoke after touching the material slowly in a way that made the human grow red in his face, which amused her. "I like it." She paused to part the flaps of the coat though, feeling the red softer and strange material underneath. "What's this extra shirt? Is it really necessary?"
Bill chuckled at that, crinkling his eye. "Yeah, Fordsy, do ya really need that shirt too?" He teased, knowing exactly what he was hiding beneath it. He got the sudden urge to remove the sweater and run his fingers over the tattooed and scarred skin hiding beneath... Maybe later~
The old man couldn't help his blush from spreading. Ugh, damned emotions! Focus on the task at hand! "I'd greatly prefer wearing my turtleneck." He managed to speak clearly and sternly.
"Aw, can I change the colour then? You know what, I'm just gonna do it!" A flourish later and he had changed the red sweater into a yellow one. How could he resist? "That's better! Don'tcha agree guys?"
"The red was better." Pacifier mutter, looming over the tiny human. He wasn't even the tallest of the crew, but nearly everyone on Bill's squad was massive compared to Stanford. Only Keyhole was eye-to-eye with him, and only Amorphous Shape was smaller. Maybe. Ford tried not to look at that strange being too hard, as the way its angles twisted around didn't seem like they should be possible. The odd entity prodded at the now-gold sweater on Ford, noticing the way all the stitching had been remade into triangles. It makes a comment that Ford can't understand, a weird sound that keeps cutting through the air and has his teeth hurting.
"Re-marking him as yours?" Bill turned a slightly pinker shade causing Pyronica to snicker and give the triangle a flirty wink before changing the subject. Some amount of teasing was okay, but none of them were powerful enough to actually risk angering Bill Cipher.
"Whaddabout his boots? They're so dirty and drab!" Bill is quick to latch onto the subject change, shrinking himself down to the size Ford remembered best. That way he could stand between the old man's legs and hum thoughtfully, poking the hiking shoes with his cane.
"Yeah, you're right toots. Can't have him being an eyesore if he's going to roll with us. How about... This!" Bill taps the shoes and changes them to extremely high-heels, almost identical to the sort Pyronica wore. Ford yelped as he fell backwards, landing against 8-ball's open palm.
"Nothing was wrong with my footwear, boots are practical when you are out in the field." He complained, trying to ignore the odd glances of these huge demons. Was he being too bold? His boots were fine though, he didn't really understand this dressing-exercise nor how drawn out it had become! He had to finish it somehow. "I can't walk in these!"
"Aw, afraid you'll hurt something babe?" Bill landed on Ford's chest, eye crinkled in humor as he looked over the man before giving a dramatic sigh. "Suppose ya can't party hard if you're breaking your wimpy legs. Though that'd be hilarious! All right, all right no need to look so sour, relax~" Snapping his fingers he changed the pink heels into shiny black dress shoes. Just like the demigod wore, if more detailed. Bill Cipher didn't need to be subtle. "Right, that was fun, but we didn't come here to play dolls, what'd we crash this place for again 8-Ball?" Bill pulled Stanford upright by an arm and returned to his big size, holding the man against his front possessively.
The large troll monster grins toothily."To. Get. WEIRD!" The others cheer loudly at the inside joke and Bill glanced around, choosing a wrecked car at random and zapping it into a sweet ride for everyone. Well, one advantage to having Sixer this tiny was that he wouldn't take up much room at least, Bill thought as the rest of his crew piled into the pimped out vehicle. Teeth was already chewing on the upholstery, and the demigod almost made a comment when he noticed how Stanford was glancing toward the tree-line. No doubt looking for the little sapling.
"Something on your mind there, brainiac?" Bill asked, tapping on the metal plate with a dull clank. Of course he could read Ford's surface thoughts, there was no hiding it from him, but playing as if he was oblivious to them was part of the fun. After all, the man of science instantly went on the defensive, mind whirring into action; thus playing right into his hand.
"No― I, well, yes, I am not terribly familiar with your... friends. And I haven't been to a party since my college days. They were not very interesting nor a good experience for me." Ford swallowed his nerves, surprised with how true that answer was. While of course he was worried about Dipper, Mabel, and Stanley, he really didn't know any of these demons. He hadn't even gotten to the Fear-pyramid or whatever and already he felt out-of-place!
"Cute, but’cha ain't ever partied with my freaks yet, you'll fit right in. Just stick with me Sixer, and you can't lose~" The triangle winked and floated both of them into the car, placing Ford safely in the cup-holder. His comment both was intended to keep Ford near him during the upcoming rave and to remind him that being on Cipher's side was the winning side.
Stanford wasn't so naive as to miss the threat in the comment and kept quiet as the car roared to life, lifting them up toward the massive castle. What had Bill called it? Fear-pyramid. Fearamid. Gosh, it was tacky name wise, though the architecture impressed him as they drew closer. He chose to focus on that rather than how Bill kept reaching down to pet his hair, or how Pyronica was leaning all over Hectorgon in the back seat. Yikes, this really was like high-school all over again in a sense!
He had to focus on trying to beat Cipher though. He knew of a weakness, possibly, given his experience in the Portal and going between dimensions. It would take some time to set everything up though, and until then it looked like there was no way he could leave the pyramid unless he managed to grow wings or develop the ability to teleport spontaneously. Stanford was still mulling it over as the demonic gang leaps from the vehicle and Bill lead them to a wide-open room, complete with an eye-shaped stained glass and pyramid furniture lounging around. That alone breaks him out of his train of thought. Bill was an odd, extremely vain creature and he almost laughed at the sight, not noticing the demigod hovering beside him until he touches Stanford's shoulder.
"Hey, so I was thinkin’, we don't want Xanthar crushing your puny mortal body accidentally, so how about we fix one more thing~" It wasn't really a question because before the Pines man could say anything he felt something like vertigo and pitched forward against Bill. Unsure of what just happened, he looked around, finally coming to an understanding when Keyhole sighed from somewhere at his side. Cipher had... made him taller? "There, muuuuch better!" Bill cackled at Ford's confusion on this change. The man stare, mind-boggled when a plastic cup is placed into his hand and suddenly something clicks in his head. This wasn't all an act designed to humiliate him, or to demoralize Dipper. No, Bill did this because he liked him.
We are the heroes of our time
But we’re dancing with the demons in our minds
Chapter 2: Put me to Sleep
[Isa] We are super happy that you guys are enjoying the story so far! <3 We have so much planned for it and this is only the beginning~
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Stuck in a limbo (here we go)
Me and my sins go (toe-to-toe)
You stuck yourself into
A pretty mess that I made for you
Stanford didn't know what to say. He was confused and it wasn’t just because of his new height... He really hoped he didn't have to go and vomit after this, that would be inconvenient as well as disgusting! He had barely parted his lips to speak until he felt something warm wrap around his arm and glanced to the side to see the demoness grinning at him. W-Well...! At least she uh, wasn't so huge anymore... Um... The old man had expected his dimension-hopping to help him be able to talk to women without feeling like as if he was about to take a death jump by now, but no. He still felt as nervous and uncomfortable as he did when he went to school and had panicked (and run off...) the one time a girl had asked him to the prom dance... Stanley used to tease him about it, all in good spirit, but old habits died hard... It was difficult to focus properly with the one-eyed lady invading his personal space like this!
"I liked your small size, sugar, but this is very nice too." Pyronica said and touched his shoulder. "I think the red compliments the outfit, whadd'ya think Pacy?"
The ox-like monster nodded and poured some of his drink into his mouth that revealed itself once he pulled the pacifier out from his belly. “Looks good.”
"R-Red..?" Stanford tried to not stutter, but it was hard not to with the demoness hanging all over him! He glanced down at himself to see what was red now and gasped audibly when he found a certain crimson glow surrounding his hands and body. It was very much like the yellow tint following Bill's triangular self. H-Huh? "Magic...?" He mouthed under his breath as he stared at the pulsing tint of red. How fascinating! His analytical and scientific nature kicked in and he instantly wanted to examine the magic surrounding him, to understand it.
"You got it, Sixer! To roll with my crew ya need some juice to work with y'know!" Bill explained jovially in his nasal tone. "It'll need some work and practise to be usable for you, but I'm sure you're up to the challenge, right?" He found it incredibly satisfying how uncomfortable his prize looked in Pyronica's grasp versus how he'd acted in his own ones; good to know he knew who he belonged to! "I'm always willing to give ya a few free pointers if you ask. Floating would be the first step."
Stanford nodded carefully and gave a small smile. He could do this! With magic, it would be easier to pull off his plan anyway. The size would be something he'd have to grow accustomed to first, clearly his body wasn't taking it as well as his mind! "Of course. Thank you." Leave it to Bill to jump at the chance at teaching him something new huh... Just like old times... "W-What is this though? Some sort of... Alcohol?" He sniffed at the strange slimy green liquid in his hands. He'd always been good at holding his alcohol luckily, but something told him this drink was very different...
"Time punch! One of many illegal interdimensional drinks at my party. You should stick clear of it for now though, it can really mess with mortal body-functions." The demigod snapped his fingers and tables lined up against the stained blood red window panels, various assortments of drinks and snacks appearing. Bill laughed as he watched 8-Ball, Pacifier and Teeth run off to get some while hooting. "But, do try the skewered eyeballs with the shewalsa dip, it's divine~" He put his index finger and thumb together in delight. "Now, all we need is some sick music to get us all in the mood! Any suggestions!?"
Amorphous Shape flailed with his tendril-like arms while his multiple eyes widened excitedly. The raspy rotten voice of his cut through the air like knives and Stanford had to restrain himself to not cover his ears while cringing. W-What was that? How could anyone understand this sort of speech? It was interesting to say the least, but still...
"Aw, Morpho, you're right! Some rave would definitely be swell." Pyronica licked her lips and looked at the human. "You ever danced with demons, honey?"
Bill loved watching Ford flounder under the attention of Pyronica, that tricky fire-witch. She snatched the cup from his hand and sipped at the strong punch with a one-eyed wink. Stanford felt some familiarity toward the consistence of the liquid, almost certain he'd seen it before, but he couldn’t focus with the demoness leaning all over him all while moving her warm hand lower on his side. Okay suddenly Bill was less than loving that sort of attention. It wasn't just jealousy either, as Bill floated forward, and asked the Mistress of Flame for a dance after Hectorgon started up the music. He saw the way she kept sniffing at Ford, that hunger in her eye. Being a demonic personification of fire meant that she was drawn to burn and consume above all else, and, well, maybe after they'd gotten the magic to stick on Ford a bit longer.
While Cipher was busy 'dancing' with Pyronica, Ford slunk to a nearby wall as to get out of the way. He still felt pretty awkward around these creatures, not just from his newly acquired height. This entire situation was fairly odd and distracting him from his true goal. Maybe he could slip deeper into the Fearamid structure and explore it without Bill noticing? But just as Ford turned to find an exit and leave he noticed the short blue demon standing beside him, holding out a new cup. Crap. H-How long had... what was the thing's name again? Lock... locked, key... Keyhole. Of course! How long had Keyhole been standing nearby waiting for him to notice them exactly? Ford coughed into one hand out of embarrassment and accepted the offered drink, which was a cloudy grey color. "Thank you. Not time punch this time I assume?" He spoke with a raised eyebrow.
"Oh, no way man! That stuff will mix around your time lines if you aren't careful, and I don't know about you but I want to enjoy the party before getting temporally wasted. Sure, most of us can hold it this early,” he threw a thumb over his shoulder at the great ox-like beast downing his drink. “But it’s better to wait until it gets crazy and all!” Keyhole grinned, standing on his toes to clack their cups together before drinking from his own.
Ford experimentally sniffed, taking a small sip of the liquid and was surprised to actually recognize it. A sort of distilled secretion that was popular in trans-dimensional spaces. That thought alone made Stanford realize why the time punch had seemed so familiar; in small quantities it could even punch holes in space-time, he'd met a man once that invented a device that used the element to create temporary portals through dimensions. And here the demons were getting drunk drinking it...
He looked down at Keyhole and noticed for the first time that the odd shape in his head seemed to go... back a lot further than it should. Not-so-subtly checking by weaving his head a little, the demon gave him an amused smile. "It goes to a pocket-dimension!"
"Oh, I’m sorry, I didn't mean to stare."
"Nah, it's okay, it does that! Actually I'm kinda surprised you aren't trying to put things in it, usually that works on mostly organic sapients." Keyhole squinted a little at Ford before shrugging, and the man awkwardly rubbed at the back of his neck.
"Well, if it is some sort of mind-compulsion, I'm probably resistant due to the metal plate I installed in my head. Telekill Alloy, refined without the largely negative side effects, picked it up in dimension 148-delta. Stops extrasensory mind-control and... and possession among other things." Oh, shoot, his mouth was getting away from him again! He shouldn't have said that in front of Bill's friend. Yet, Keyhole looked more impressed than anything.
"No, really!? THAT'S how you kept Bill out? Hahah!” Keyhole laughed and caught the eyes of another in their group. “Oh, hey Pacifier! Pacy! Come over here you have GOT to hear this!" He waved to the large demon and told him about the metal plate once he walked over to them. This got another hearty laugh and impressed nod and Ford felt himself relax as he began to tell them both about how he learned of the metal and his initial partial-success using aluminum foil as well as the many protective sigils needed to make it work.
And thus, without even meaning to, he ended up rather enjoying himself at the party. Stanford was a huge hit with the monster crew, and they had many interesting, if clearly malicious, stories to tell him about other dimensions. Hours passed in a blur as he drank odd alcohol with curious qualities and snacked on the otherworldly buffet table (those eyeballs weren’t so bad with the dip actually.) The old man was exchanging a prison story with Hectorgon when he bumped into someone. Stanford was about to apologize by default when a warm arm wrapped around his waist and his voice caught in his throat.
"Hey there smart guy, told ya you'd fit right in! You're a riot! Hey, we should totally start a riot, or a mob or something, doesn't that sound like fun?~" Cipher spun Ford around to face him and cackled when the man stumbled, leaning heavily on the triangle for support. "Woah, what's the matter there Sixer, too much punch for ya?"
"Bill..." He swallowed hard and regained his footing, dusting down the front of his turtleneck in embarrassment. "No, it's not that," Not JUST that, he maybe did go a little overboard with the social drinking…He threw Hectorgon a look and was relieved to see the demon not taking offense to their story being interrupted, the red hexagon just chuckled as if saying he understood before floating over towards Pyronica.This was when it hit the man how exhausted he was. "Actually I’m feeling tired, after everything that's happened today." Pushing up his glasses, Ford rubbed at his eyes with a soft sigh, freezing once he blinked and found the dream demon staring at him oddly. The single eye crinkled with amusement a moment before Bill slung an arm around his shoulders again, pushing him toward a far wall.
"HEY GUYS. I gotta deal with the lightweight here, don't change my song, seriously, I'm talkin' to you Xanthar!" The demons cackled at that, a few waving at the two as they left through a doorway that mysteriously morphed into existence in the dark brickwork. When they turned a corner and went out of the party's sight, the old man felt fingers scratch through the hair on the back of his neck causing him to look up startled at Bill. "Glad ya made the right choice and joined me yet?"
Stanford felt the warming and numbing effects of the liquid he'd drank, but the way Bill's fingers touched his skin made him feel hotter and even less focused. His face flushed from the attention and, coupled with the alcohol in his system, he found climbing the steps to be a challenging task. They seemed blurry, probably because it was so dark... "Yes, of course." He replied, watching how Bill's eye crinkled. He'd always been so curious how his eye worked... Did he see through multiple channels, multiple realities as well as this one? How else would he be able to... See so many futures and all? Hmm... The old man didn't possess the right state of mind to create theories right now. "I uh, I must say I never expected it to be so easy to talk―" He paused when he felt Bill's fingers travel lower over his back. It was distracting! "Talk to your friends..."
The demigod was aware of how intoxicated his human was, and it was rather adorable! He knew Stanford would be a lightweight when it came to his party drinks, any mortal would be! But it was funny how his face filled up with blood judging by that colour rising in his cheeks. He could use this vulnerable state of mind too, drunk people were much easier to coerce. "What can I say, we outcasts get along well with our 'kin', know what I mean?"
"Outcasts...?" Stanford blinked and had to watch his step to not trip. The interior of this place appeared so impossible to him! Somehow it wasn’t obviously, but it was puzzling to say the least.
"Yeah. Interdimensional criminals, weirdos being held back by their realm's laws, freaks of nature being banished from their homes. Stuff like that." Bill helped him by allowing him space to float, still holding onto him. "I mean, take Xanthar. He's not much for talkin' so ya wouldn’t know, but because of his ‘sparse' look, he was never accepted by those around him before. Can ya believe that cruelty? Just because you haven't got a healthy stupid forest on your back it doesn't mean you're some contagious illness, geez..."
"Psst, don't pick that kid, he's some kind of freak with six fingers..."
"Six fingers? Eww, that doesn't even sound possible..."
"Some sort of alien teacher's-pet... His brother seems okay though."
The memories washed over Stanford like a wave, each bitter as bilgewater. Freak... So Bill's friends were all considered freaks by their former peers...? Was what he meant when he said he'd fit in? Stanford wasn't sure how he should take that sort of thing, it was a double edged compliment. "That does sound crazy. I've never understood why anomalies are considered so bad in the first place... It's an indication that you're special―" He paused when he recalled that Bill was the one who mainly encouraged that sort of thinking. He told him he was a genius, special and all...
"Exactly! Weirdness isn't anything bad, it's just that most's perception of 'normalcy' and 'reality' are seriously limited. It's a ‘law’ born out of lies to control the population and therefore their belief." Bill's eye narrowed briefly.
"’Reality is an illusion’... Right?"
"Uh-huh! A system meant to impede those gifted few progress to be within 'boundaries' and hinder their potential."
"I see..." It was hard to swallow, but he had to admit after his dimensional-hopping he'd experienced more than a few different perspectives of truth and possibility. Every place had its own sense of normal and reality, so what Bill said wasn’t wrong... It was strange, but it definitely held valid ground. Stanford took a moment to glance around once the two floated into a large chamber, triangular doors shifting to let them enter. W-Whoa...!
The gold was blinding at first, but once he got used to it the other features steadily became visible. "W-What room is this?" He peered at the spindling bookcase, trying to catch any of the titles but failing due to his intoxicated state. Was that a bed...? What was up with the ceiling!? It had the appearance of a clear night starscape, but logically he knew that wasn’t what the sky looked like now.
The triangle cackled in amusement at that. "Can't ya guess IQ?" He reached out to draw his hand over a golden pillar as they passed it. Ciphers and symbols etched into it beautifully.
"...Is it yours?" Stanford didn't notice the triangular details on almost everything until now and the space-like ceiling moving reminded him of the first time they'd met. That time... It was very special to him. Despite how it ended after everything... he still fondly remembered their chess game. Was it maybe like... A first date, sort of? Or something? When you looked back on it and all. The man blushed at that and grew even redder at the god's answer.
"Right as always. Well technically EVERYTHING is mine now," he laughed excitedly, "buuut, it's like my master bedroom, except I don't sleep." Sleeping was a mortal weakness after all. But he could use some time to meditate and focusing on certain schemes and plans of his every now and then. You could say it was alike alone-time, though he was never truly alone with the vast influence he possessed. All the conversations he overheard, all the people trying to summon him, all that gel! "Since you're still human, you need to rest and all Sixer. Temporary weakness if ya ask me, but for now we’ll take it in stride..."
What...? Stanford wasn't sure what he heard anymore, things seemed too blurry and bright. "Uh, what do you mean… ‘temporary’?"
"Oh, you'll see~"
The human allowed him to remove the black shimmering trenchcoat, but he didn't see where the demigod deposited it. He was still confused why Bill had taken him to his room. "D-Don't I have a room of my own?" He managed to ask once Bill slipped his fingers under the sweater to remove it. This was getting rather, um...
Oh man, he was too cute! Bill snickered inwardly. "What if I want you to stay in my room?" He tugged at the sweater, prying Stanford's hands away from denying him the right to take it off. "You won't refuse me anymore, will you Fordsy?" For good measure his fingers danced around the human's skin, touching the scars and places where he knew he'd inked his symbol on. Ah, he remembered those days like as if it was yesterday...
Things seemed to be going way too fast suddenly for Stanford, the mixture of alcohol and exhaustion messing with his head. At least when he was at the party he could remind himself that this was all a trick, a long-term plan for defeating the demon. Fixing his mistake. Here, though, with the warm black hands brushing through his chest hair, it felt too nostalgic. Bill was dredging up old feelings.
On purpose, of course... He knew how easily humans associated the senses with memory; smell, touch, taste were all triggers that he could skillfully manipulate. He knew exactly what Ford recalled when his hands ghosted over the wheel inked on his skin. Oh, he missed that wide-eyed trust sometimes, when Stanford worshipped him entirely. There had been a time when he never would have told Bill 'no'. Back when he held onto the demigod’s hand and said 'from now until the end of time'. Cipher still planned on getting that promise.
Ford found the edge of the bed behind his knees suddenly and fell more than he’d been pushed down onto it. It was rather large, the black of the sheets shimmering gold and violet when they wrinkled in the light. He hadn't thought about them doing this sort of thing in a while... at least many years. When dimension hopping he tried not to remember how he’d loved Bill, as it hurt too much. But all of this touching had brought it back and made him want things he shouldn't. Things that wasn’t important in the big picture, and should never be considered again!. Oh, wait, hold on didn't the demon ask him something? Putting his glasses to the side, Ford squinted at the blurry triangle. "No... of course not." He wasn't in a position to protest. The hand moved to the man's face and he turned into it, even if he knew it was an obvious 'reward' from saying the ‘right thing’. It still felt nice. "Everything is yours after all, right?"
"Sure is, smart guy!" Bill laughed and ruffled his favorite human's hair. The unspoken truth was that he did own Stanford Pines, and no amount of crossed out tattoos or metal plates would change that. It had been a while, (only a blip on the cosmic scale but still too long) since he'd been inside the man, and oh how he missed it. Possession was the purest form of control after all, and he remembered how sweet it had been when Sixer gave it up to him. He tweaked one of those gross, vestigial nipples on the old man which got him a gasp and Ford trying to back up away from him. "What's the matter poindexter, too much for you~" Bill loomed over him now, eye inches from his face as he stroked up the man's sides. "Y'didn't complain before when I played with these, you've gone all soft like a bruised peach!" He laughed as he took two handfuls of Ford's chest, kneading them a bit too harshly judging by the flinch. Or maybe it was just rough enough, if the shaky inhale was anything to go by?
"B-Bill, I―" Stanford was hopelessly conflicted. He liked it, but it was too sudden. He wanted the closeness, but it had been so long. He loved Bill, but Bill had betrayed him. Placing a hand on the demon's side to try and push him away, he was struck by the odd crackling of their energy fields mingling. Oh, that was interesting. Tracing fingers down the smooth sides he realized that while Cipher now had a physical, solid form, that same electrical sensation he remembered from the mindscape was still here. Wavering in his intoxicated state, he wondered what sort of material the demon created his new body from and Stanford barely noticed the fingers slipping under the hem of his pants. Could Bill just create matter now that he was in this realm, or did he gather it from someplace else― Stanford suddenly remembered the Rift and the nightmare that was outside this place when he thought about that. How―!? Bill was distracting him, stringing him along and making him forget that everyone was― "Oh, God…!"
"Yes, Stanford?" Bill of course answered, unable to resist. Besides, his name should be on Ford's tongue, not some mobojobo fake sky man concept! Feeling a tremble under his hands, the demon cracked open his single eye and noticed the tears streaming silently down his face. "What's with the waterworks bub?" He asked, even though he knew exactly what was wrong, with how Ford kept trying to wipe his face in shame and surprise.
"N-Nothing, I just can't believe, how― how much..." God, his voice was a mess, his throat kept trying to strangle the words from him and he felt a hollow emptiness below his heart. This was all his fault. People were dying out there because he thought this demon had been helping him build a better world. He'd been tricked so expertly, and now Stanford Pines had the nerve to enjoy the touch of that which had destroyed everything. "I-I'm sorry, I... " He wasn’t sure who he even apologized to anymore! Holding out his hands blindly he was startled when a hand brushed his palm before lacing their fingers together. That was all the invitation he needed to throw himself into Bill's arms, chest heaving with quiet sobs he failed to suppress. He couldn't stand to be alone right now, and Cipher was better than nothing, right? Stanford wasn’t used to breaking down like this, it had been long ago since he last did it, but judging by the situation around and his own irrelevant but still surfacing feelings, perhaps it wasn’t so strange to let it all out at some point... Maybe they floated, or maybe he just pushed him down gently, but Ford soon found himself laying down against a soft pillow, fingers still carding through his hair softly.
Aww, this vulnerability was too adorable to behold! Bill weaved his fingers through the crying human's grey locks, touching his scalp lightly. He knew Stanford's morality conflicted with what he'd decided to do today, all that humanity was pouring out and, quite frankly it was welcoming for now. It was easy to coax him into a sense of security and comfort, not to mention he was certain his touch calmed the man too. Humans could be sooo easy to predict, but then again, he'd been around for far longer than any of 'em so did that really come as a surprise? Nah.
"You're not alone anymore." Bill continued as the man sniffled and tried to cover his distressed state of being. Of course that was futile considering he could FEEL it, the conflict within him just rolled off Stanford in waves. "We're together again, like it's supposed to be. Until the end of time, remember?" Humans had a thing for hearing they had support, right? Well, he wasn't planning on leaving ever, anyway. A trillion years and still countin'!
Stanford's sobs were muffled against his hand and pillow, but he could still register what Bill said faintly. It hurt... It hurt to hear it, it felt so genuine and real, but... Last time he believed it, he was stabbed in the back. He couldn’t fall for it again, it was better to tune it all out! He swallowed weakly, finding the touch of the triangle comforting in his despair. Wasn't that what he planned to do to Bill in the first place? Yes... He'd get his revenge... He'd be the hero he was supposed to be and atone for his mistakes...! Thinking about those very mistakes sent him into another crying fit however. All of this was his fault... Could he even make it up to this world if his plan worked? To his family? At the thought of his family he was reminded of the tearful way Dipper had looked at him before running off... That hurt too. He didn't know about his plan... Would Stanley understand? Or Mabel? His breathing became more shallow as the touch went lower, stroking his back and warming his tense aching muscles. It was tough to fight the need to rest... He wanted to sleep. He didn't know what it would mean as he usually suffered from nightmares and such, but... If he slept the next day would arrive faster.
"Sleep now, I'll take care of you, Sixer." Bill hummed as he exerted a small amount of pale blue magic through his fingertips to help him fall asleep. He was a master of the mind after all. Man, he was really tempted to follow him into his dreamscape and continue there... Not that it was less interesting to touch a sleeping person, it was almost the same really! But he wished to hear those throaty and raw sounds from his favorite meatbag! Hmm, maybe it wasn't the right time though... If he wanted Stanford to get more comfortable around him, maybe he should let him have a good night's sleep for once? There was plenty of time to have fun with his prize later after all!
With those satisfying thoughts, Bill closed his eye, creating a perfect copy which teleported back to the party. It was less of an illusion and more a split in his attention; he was perfectly capable of multitasking. He couldn't leave his crew hanging, but he couldn't leave his human alone either, so this was a good solution. He had told him he wasn't alone after all. It sure was good to be able to see and be in multiple places at once! His powers in the physical realm had grown much stronger from the influence of his rotten former dimension, and it felt amazing! All the things he could crush, all the people he could eat, all the laws he could turn upside-down and inside-out! Ah, he was getting a little ahead of himself, wasn't he? Hahah, all in good time~ The demigod carefully removed Stanford's pants and clothed him in golden silk before resuming his position of touching his greying soft locks.
Bill summoned a small chess piece to his free hand, coating it with gold while his eye crinkled. "Oh, I'll take sooo much pleasure in ripping you away from your pathetic family again." He turned the king-piece over in his palm, observing the way it shuddered in his grasp. "I wonder how long your heroic facade will last... I know you think you can defeat me, and I thank you for giving me this opportunity to show you just how much you belong to me. A pet trying to kill its master, a toy trying to hurt its owner. Oh, please IQ, you know deep down just how futile your so-called 'mission' is... And even if you don't understand it yet," The triangle would be grinning if he had a visible mouth. "It'll be more hilarious to watch you try to justify all the fun-fun things I'm planning on making you do."
The great thing about people being asleep was that they couldn't hear what was happening around them in the waking world, and Bill loved it immensely. He cackled to himself while his victim, plaything, and pet enjoyed the sweet lull of comforting whispers and soothing dreams.
[Swift] This chapter was a little bit shorter- but fear not, because the next one will be longer, and have a lot more. Meat. In it. B)
Chapter 3: Apéritif
[Swift] Sorry this one was a bit later, we did kinda agreed on a 1-2 week per update schedule, due to work and other stuff. SO. Sorta inbetween there, variable. That being said, enjoy~ This is where things start to earn that rating. By which I mean, that archive warning starts taking effect NOW.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
So it's gonna be forever
Or it's gonna go down in flames
You can tell me when it's over
If the high was worth the pain
"Wakey wakey, eggs and... uh, meat!"
H-Huh? Stanford frowned weakly as he pried his bleary stinging eyelids open at the nasal familiar sound. A heavenly smell assaulted his nostrils immediately and he sensed his mouth water. He forced himself to re-establish the situation before waking up thoroughly, going through his thoughts before realizing...who was talking... The old man instantly sat up by default at hearing Bill's voice, his hands twitching to find a weapon almost reflexively, but they landed on... soft material? He glanced down at the shimmering silky robe he was wearing, eyebrows creasing in confusion. He had no memory of putting it on! "B-Bill...?" Even through his blurry sight his surrounding started to become clearer.
"Of course, who else but your ol' pal Bill?" The triangle chuckled at his alert expression and placed his hands at his sides. "Boy, you sure had to snooze huh? Eight hours, that's a lot for ya Sixer! That think pan sure musta been half-fried after all those drinks."
"E-Eight hours!?" The human stammered, looking around with squinted eyes for a clock or otherwise indicator of the time. Eight hours!? He hadn't slept that much in YEARS! He did feel a good deal better too, aside from the general distraught sensation of waking up... Did he actually sleep well? Did Bill help him with that? Or well... Considering he'd been the cause of his insomnia, paranoia and everything in between in the first place he wouldn't say 'help' just yet... "I uh..."
"Don't worry about it! Your deteriorating fleshsack needed it, we all get that." Bill made it sound so casual. "Also I brought you food! Pretty sure humans eat food after waking up, right?" Or did they eat like, once every other day? Once a week?
Stanford had to contain a gasp when a table with… clawed legs, came running up to his side. The scent of whatever he'd smelled before came back full force while he rubbed his sleepy reddened eyes. Was one of those scents coffee? Did Bill still remember how he liked his coffee..? That thought caused a bubble of warmth in his chest, but he quickly dismissed the feeling... It shouldn't be comforting! This situation shouldn't be comforting at all... "You made me breakfast?"
"Considering I'm the only one here who has the slightest clue what you can eat Sixer, yeah. I mean who did ya think whipped it up? Kryptos?" The demigod laughed at that, wiping an imaginary tear from his crinkled eye.
Moving so he could scoot his legs off the edge of the bed, Ford reached for his glasses first and the cup of coffee second, trying to process everything while blowing gently on the hot beverage. Eight full hours of sleep was probably part of the reason he barely had a headache, despite his drinking. He couldn't even remember dreaming anything... or at least, nothing bad. That fact alone made Stanford suspicious of Bill's influence; the mind was his domain above all else, he could create nightmares just as easily as erase them.
Great, he had a demonic triangle for a dream-catcher.
"Thank you." He said, surprised at his own honesty before taking a sip of the coffee. It wasn't the best coffee he'd ever had, but it was how he liked it and it did the trick. Already his mind was starting to whirl into action and he was going to need it for planning. Today he had to find a method of communication with the rest of his family, and perhaps if he was careful he could also feel out the limits of his 'freedom’. He held no illusions that he still was within a gilded cage, the trick was just to find the bars without Bill’s suspicion. Ford hadn't even realized he absentmindedly started eating until he felt whatever he put in his mouth squirm. In shock he spits out a meaty, half-chewed thick grub instead of bacon. The echoing sound of high-pitched laughter almost completely drowning out the tiny noises it was still making.
"Hah! You should have seen the look on your face! Don't worry, they aren't sentient or anything, if that offends your silly little moral compass." Hesitant and still hungry, Ford carefully put the 'meat' back in his mouth. The demon only watched him with the same amused expression so he went back to it without another thought. Well. Almost. Until Bill added, "Did I say sentient? I meant sapient. They can feel pain after all~" Ford groaned at that and just focused on eating. Honestly, he'd had much worse during his time between dimensions; eating bugs was the least questionable thing he'd had to do. After a few minutes and nearly all of his breakfast being consumed, Ford realized that Bill was still there, floating nearby and waiting... watching.
The demigod did an awful lot of watching, but then again, mortals were so amusing! They had these cute little ticks and nervous habits like pen-chewing or auto-immune responses, and Stanford Pines was his absolute favorite mortal of them all; he could hardly wait for the activities he had planned for later today! Bill was of course quick to answer the unspoken question lingering around the human by floating up above him with a delighted cackle. "Don't mind me~ Well, do mind me, and also hurry up, tick tock we've got things to do, Stanford!" His single eye morphed into a clock that rang like a ruthless alarm for a moment. “Things to do and places to be! Chop chop!”
"Surely there isn't any real rush?" He ventures, unsure again with Bill so close and not to mention loud. How had he even ended up in this golden night-robe? What happened last night after he… fell asleep? The man swallowed, finishing his coffee to distract himself from imagining the disturbing things Bill could have done to him.
"Maybe, maybe not, but as much as I love the silver you’re sporting, your aging human body won't last forever! So let's get hustlin' huh?" He grabbed a handful of the grey hair and tugged it hard, eliciting a gasp from Stanford before spinning out of reach. Oh it was still so much fun to play with him. With a snap of his fingers he made yesterday's crafted outfit appear beside the man.
"Right... What in the world has you so excited anyway?" Ford says after a sigh, picking up the yellow sweater and pants before pausing. To be honest he felt a bit awkward undressing in front of Bill. It had been a while and his body wasn't like it used to be. That wasn’t even bringing up how the nature of their relationship had changed, what with the betrayal and all. The demon seemed to notice his hesitation and rolled his eye before leaning back casually in the air.
"Come on, it's not like you got anything I haven't seen before Sixer. Like. Exactly 9.234 hours ago." Ford felt his cheeks burn at the comment and he turned away before pulling off the silky robe. Of course, the entire time he was treated to enthusiastic cheers and wolf-whistles at his back. Really, if he had to put up with this every morning, he didn't know how long he could keep up the act! When he reached for his dragon-hide coat, though, it floated into Bill's hands instead, the triangle giving him a pleading look. Knowing he'd be just like a stubborn brat until he got whatever he wanted, Ford groaned and held out his arms, letting him put on the trench coat.
Helping from Bill naturally involved fingers tracing around his sensitive neck as he fixed the wide collar and patted down his sides. Finally fiddling with the edges and cuffs,he was thoroughly satisfied with Stanford's appearance. "There we go~ But to answer that question of yours, got to thinking that we should work on those handy-dandy powers. Doesn't do you any good if ya don't know how to use them after all! Floating is your first challenge but you're such a smart guy, I'm sure ya can master it in no time and then we can get onto the fun stuff! Eventually."
Stanford widened his brown eyes in surprise; he’d almost forgotten about the odd power coursing through his body now, it was a very subtle feeling. He couldn't place it exactly but if he had to describe the sensation in one word it would be... hungry. No idea what FOR exactly, but it was a worrying thought to have as Cipher excitedly lead him out of the gold room. It was natural for there to be unforeseen consequences of these new powers Bill gave him, for although he knew a great deal about the abnormal he’d never experienced it so personally before. He wanted to write down every detail of the feeling. Something within him squirmed a bit with the ideation of studying himself but it worried him much less than it ought to. So engrossed in thought Ford only noticed they'd arrived when he bumped into the warm back of the demon. "Where―" The words died on Ford's tongue as he looked up and noticed they'd reached some sort of floating balcony with the rising sun illuminating everything in soft orange. "Oh." The Rift itself had its own source of neon light, and the edges above were odd to look at... was it getting larger? Hard to judge for sure, even with the red sky spreading out behind it. He was definitely certain those cosmic-like specks of green around were new though.
"Admiring my work? Or should I say admiring your own work, since this was only possible ‘cause of you. Thanks for that by the way~" Bill chuckled and flicked at Ford's nose playfully before coming to stand on the edge of the platform, materializing his cane to twirl in one hand. "Paying attention now, Stanford? Good! Your first lesson is free of charge, floating! Everyone with magical capabilities can float, easiest trick in the book. Just gotta tell gravity to not be such a loser." The man felt curious, but eager to learn something new. Surely it couldn't be that difficult, right? Trying to focus on everything he knew about gravity and magnetic fields, he wills himself to rise from the ground... and doesn't do much more than strain his shoulders from the effort. Cipher floated over beside him, leaning an arm on his shoulder to guide him closer. "Nah, you're still thinking too hard about it IQ, you gotta just let it happen instinctual and all. Here, let me give you a HAND." The demigod placed a hand on Ford's back and pushed him off the edge with a laugh.
Stanford flailed wildly as he dropped through the unforgiving air, heart in his throat, trying to catch himself before the ground could. Focus, focus, he couldn't think― N-Nothing felt like it was working, and he could hardly come up with a solution with the trees flying toward him. Was he going to die!? "Bill!" He called and closed his eyes, the rocks below rushing up and―! Okay he definitely should have hit the ground by now. Peeking through his fingers he came face to face with the crinkled eye of Bill Cipher.
"Knew you could do it! Not bad, guess all that time away from your books made ya better in clutch moments, huh Sixer?" Stanford blinked and looked down, noticing he was only several inches above the dirt, but still... he wasn't touching it at all. He felt the hot rush of triumph swell in his chest, even as Bill grasped his shoulder and gave him a little spin. It felt... great! Powerful, wonderful to just float here unharmed after thinking he was about to splatter on the forest floor― He couldn't help but let out an excited laugh. Apparently that broke whatever trick he was doing and concentration he had since he dropped the last foot onto the dirt, landing on his feet. When he looked up at Bill he sported a fierce determination in his eyes and an unusually content grin split his face.
"All right, Cipher, what's next?"
"Whoa, pace yourself, buddy!" Bill laughed and floated gracefully to land on the ground, ruins and debris from the town littering their surroundings. "You gotta learn how to use magic instinctually first before we can move on. It needs to come as easy to ya as, for instance that whole meatsack oxygen thing, get what I mean?" He leaned against his glowing cane casually.
"I see." The feeling of exhilaration pumped through his body and he couldn't stop smiling. This was more than just fascinating, it was wonderful! He'd been in touch with fae folk and their magic dust, he'd taken care of an alien shapeshifter, he had seen so many incredible species of people during his thirty years across dimensions. But nothing jumped this feeling; this sensation of power and freedom! Stanford closed his eyes again, trying to clear his erratic thoughts. Meditation came quite easy to him, also something Bill had taught him, except long ago... "Like walking. Like breathing. Like a part of me." He murmured and opened his eyes. 'All right, focus on your intellect. Your goal, not the way there, but the goal itself. Where do you want to go...' Stanford was too busy concentrating on his task that he didn't notice how much smaller everything around him was. It was unimportant against this challenge.
After selecting a destination on a higher elevation, Stanford began walking, carefully at first as he climbed a piece of a former building.
"Don't think about it so hard, just do it." Bill watched him work and he wasn't surprised to see him drop the first few times. He was holding himself back through his humanity and sense of reality. Humans had terrible affinity for magic in general because of their limited perception and, well, limited stamina. Good thing he was going to help his pet with that by doing sooo much fun-fun stuff over time! That oughtta aid Fordsy with shedding away all those limitations! "Another angle, Sixer." He provided, curious to see what he'd do with that information.
Another angle...? Stanford glanced around and tilted his head before noticing something. Maybe...? Yes! He had to not limit himself to this plane's physics somehow. The old man walked up to a still standing building and focused on keeping walking as he stepped up it. He didn't think about it, and just did it like Bill instructed. After he'd taken a few steps he looked around, finding his perception tilted as he was standing against the wall. He grinned and kept walking; another angle!
Nice! The demigod was pleased to see him substituting his sense of binding gravity with something else. It was a good start for sure! Bill floated closer and turned to the side so they faced the same direction. "Not bad. You see, you have to stop limiting yourself to what you believe is possible and what isn't. Think up your own reality and LIVE it!" He jumped into the air and crinkled his eye. "Remember, this is OUR world now." Breaking stupid fragile laws of physics was one of the best things ever!
"Don't you mean YOUR world?" Stanford found himself asking before he realized half the sentence.
He wet his lips and walked up onto the flat roof, shifting his angle back to normal. Ford confidently walked along the roof before testing dipping back into a 90 degrees angle. He repeated this along the building until he felt it was as natural as walking to him. Then he finally decided it was possible to move into thin air; taking a step from the roof and walking up like as if he was ascending stairs. The walking became heavier in a sense but as long as he held onto the idea that nothing could stop him, even though he went slowly it became easier. Just like Bill said... Not thinking about it. Just doing it!
"There you go! Told ya, you'd get the hang of it quickly, IQ." The triangle would be grinning if his eye wasn't so wide and excited. "Just be careful to not switch back into that human mode, 'kay? That's why you're gonna practise good before we return to the rest of the gang."
"Where are they?" They couldn't still be partying could they...?
"Where do ya think?" Bill laughed, placing his hands at his sides in amusement. "Look, just focus on practising and you'll see when―" He paused when he registered a certain tune coming from the Fearamid above. "Aw, man. Do they have to play the best jazz in the crib when I'm not around!? Geez, not cool..."
Was he... Pouting? Well, as much as a mouth-less triangular being could pout that is! Stanford was pretty sure he sounded like as if he was pouting and he didn't know how to handle that particular information at the moment. Instead he did as his 'mentor' instructed and focused on keeping himself afloat and moving about. He spread out his arms like as if he had wings and tilted a bit so he could try soaring around, being careful to not increase his speed too much. He came to a stop beside Bill, taking a moment to right himself and then descended gently, his feet touching the ground. Instantly his body felt heavier and tougher to navigate! This was also the first time Stanford took a good look around and noticed the size of things in comparison to himself. Oh... R-Right... A dip down back into reality for him in a sense. Or to say, the reality he SHOULD be holding onto! His mission. His family. His home…
But even so...
"Yes?" Bill was all of a sudden next to him, hands moving over his shoulders as he tugged them back into the air. His eyelashes briefly touched the man's upper arm.
"...That felt amazing." Stanford admitted. It wasn't lying, he was telling the truth and while it of course excited him to be able to do these new things, something deep within couldn't help but be wary. "No, it feels amazing." It was easier now that he had the trick to make it work, and the exalted sensation of being in flight was something he couldn't describe. It was unlike anything else and for the moment anew, all his troubles and planning just vanished away. He felt free.
Bill knew he had Ford trapped now, enamored as he was with the new power coursing through his weak meat-sack. At the same time, the possibilities he saw before them were almost evenly split; if he pushed the human too fast he would rebuke him and try to pull away. That future was much less interesting than the other possibility, so he knew he had to be subtle for now, he had to make Stanford feel comfortable before testing the edges of what he'd do to maintain his 'cover'.
"Course it feels amazing! The more in touch you get with your true power, the better it'll feel, since you won't have to depend on that weak organic shell anymore. It's just holding you back, but we'll work on it don't worry." He ran a hand through Ford's hair again and was pleased when the man didn’t pull away. "We should keep this though! Silver and gold look great together after all~" Bill snickered at how flustered the man got from those comments, like he didn't remember everything that had happened between them. One day he'd let Bill take everything; his body, his humanity, his soul. Soon. He just had to wait a little longer... "Aw, hold that thought for a second." Bill held out something in a closed fist and laughs when, after Ford tried to take it, it revealed itself to be pureed grey matter. "Gotta jet real quick and deal with some things, you'll be fine on your own right? There's a good boy, all right, later!" With a tip of his hat he vanished, the summon from Gideon drawing him to another part of the town.
Stanford remained standing still for several seconds, checking to make sure that Bill was really gone before moving to inspect his surroundings. He...He needed to find some way to communicate with Dipper and Mabel! By now he was sure that the twins had reunited; Dipper was a smart kid that cared about his sister more than anything. Ford brushed off the feeling of guilt as he recalled his own twin and brushed some dust from a nearby sign. Everything was smaller now, which posed a new challenge, since all the doorways came to his hip. How ever he was going to leave a message, it had to be permanent enough that it wouldn't just get disturbed and distorted, but also obvious enough that Dipper could find it. He walked around the side of a partially-collapsed building and nearly hit his head on an Eye-bat. Oh, right, he forgot about those guys. It blinked at him for a moment, making a strange sound that almost appeared to be excited before fluttering on. O-Of course it didn’t find him a threat, they were on the same side in its uh, mindset? It probably considered him with the same enthusiasm it did with the rest of Bill’s friends… The thought of that was a little frightening to be honest.
The man glanced around for a good hidden place to write his message at, peering over the rubble in front of him. Every step of his sounded way too loud, even when he tried to move silently. Stanford gasped and turned around when he heard someone scream from a few blocks away, his mind whirred into action to aid the person, until he realized he couldn’t. He couldn’t help humans if he wished to maintain his cover! With a heavy swallow and creased brows, he willed himself to focus on his task. The screaming cut off quickly and the scientist had to think hard to not imagine what sort of horror that may have befallen the poor resident... N-Now if only there was a way to get over the debris someh― OH, of course! Concentrating on that particular way to get across didn't work, so he tried to just... will himself to not step on the ground. He didn't have to, right?
Ford couldn’t help but smile a little as he silently floated over the large pile of rubble without disturbing it and he landed carefully to face a nearby wall. Hm, this spot could be good, there was a smaller path to hide inside between the partially collapsed building and another more intact one. Pushing a dumpster out of the way, he saw the bricks as a canvas. Maybe if he just... Reaching out, Stanford drew his finger across the stonework and grinned in triumph when a dark, ink-like mark appeared. Looking over his shoulder briefly he set to making a quick note, just telling Dipper that he's all right, and that he's sorry about what he said before, and that he'll try to get in contact again. That he loves him and to stay safe with Mabel and Stanley, he'll deal with Cipher.
He looked over his work and nodded. It was concise enough to be able to be hidden by the dumpster once he placed it back carefully. (It felt like lifting a small rock…) Stanford floated away from the spot, spending some short time practising his flight and improving his tilting skills in mid-air. He had barely gotten a few blocks away when he was startled by the re-appearance of the very demon he’d mentioned in his note. With a yelp he covered his chest, dropping down a few feet before regaining his balance and landing heavily on the cracked pavement. T-That was too close! He leaned against an intact shop building to catch his breath and gain some support."Bill! You nearly gave me―"
"A heart attack? Oh please, you're not ninety two, yada yada, honestly that probably won't even happen anymore." The triangle twirled his cane thoughtfully while the man frowns.
"How do you know that?" He asked carefully, almost feeling the answer before Bill can even say it.
"Oh, 'cause I know lots of things. Lots of things."
Stanford tried to hide his smile but falters; part of him is amused by the old phrase, but a newer part just pulsed oddly at the thought of Bill's limitless knowledge. No― well, it couldn't be _limitless_ but it was most likely very vast, given the demon's age and power. He wanted to pick him over, take him apart somehow and see how it all worked, he wanted to underst―
"Hey! Speaking of things I know, you know what I know right now? That you're down here in the dirt when you SHOULD be up partying with the gang! They're askin' for ya and everything, don't wanna disappoint, do we Fordsy?" Bill felt how, for a second there, Ford was tapping into his new aspect; and of course it would be an insatiable hunger for knowledge. He could respect that. He hadn't expected anything less of a huge nerd like Stanford anyway, and he knew that it would get stronger the less Ford clutched to his humanity.
The man smiled awkwardly up at him and stepped into the air, anew; this time without any shaky steps or tilting problems so he’d definitely done good progress! "No, I suppose I wouldn't want that." He accepted Cipher's outstretched hand without a second thought and froze in horror a moment later. Time held still for a second before Bill laughed at Ford's panic and reeled him up, lashes fluttering against his face in what was very clearly a brief butterfly kiss. He didn’t stop laughing at the bright red the old man turned nor his sputtering all the way back to the Fearamid.
However what the old man didn’t see as he was sent into the loud booming chamber of the music and the demons, was that Bill stayed behind at the entrance for a moment, staring down at a certain partially-collapsed building. He turned around to float back inside, placing his hands behind his back and pointing a sizzling blue beam of magic towards the construction, destroying it completely and reducing the ‘secret message’ his pet had written on one of its walls into useless debris.
Satisfied with his work, he rejoined the gang inside, shutting the exit with a snap of his fingers.
The monsters were, of course, enthusiastic to see them again. Shouting over the booming music they asked Stanford where he’d been, a question that Bill was eager to volunteer an answer for. Ford hadn’t really wanted to be roped into this again, but he didn’t mind as much as he expected. Keyhole and Hectorgon were great conversation buddies, as eager to share stories of other dimensions as they were to listen. Pyronica was… flirty and touchy, but it only took a look from Bill before she backed off, so it never got to the point where Stanford was especially uncomfortable (if you didn’t count her dragging him to dance, that was rather uncomfortable but in an embarrassing way honestly…) Teeth, 8-ball, Kryptos and Morpho (actually named Amorphous Shape) were odder, but they were fun and seemed to always try and include the human in their games, even if a few of them were rather dangerous and most of them were twisted. Cipher had quickly pulled him away from of a round of a game called ‘spin the person’ because apparently it was too extreme for his mortal body. When asked why the demigod told him to watch, needless to say he understood just how dangerous the game would be for him... Spending time with Xanthar and Pacifier ended up much quieter, but it was a companionable silence he could feel comfortable in! Watching Pacifier drink cup after cup of oozing interdimensional drinks was quite a nice way to spend some calm time, not to mention how Xanthar put him on his large hand when he felt his back strain from the constant upright position. The great purple beast was rather sympathetic in that sense and it surprised him; to be honest any form of compassion from these demons puzzled him! 8-ball had also showed a nicer side when he brought him some snacks and told him he remembered that he enjoyed them from yesterday...
This was all so unexpected. He thought there would be more chaos, death and destruction, but this… This was fun. For the first time in his life he actually felt good at a party. Throwing aside the crazy games and malicious tales, it wasn’t much different from interacting with interesting like-minded people. Keyhole sometimes reminded him of how excited Fiddleford had been when he arrived to help him work on the Portal… Needless to say it was a double-edged thought to even consider!
But even though Bill’s friends were all good company, Stanford always needed a bit of time to himself. He managed to slip out of the main room after narrowly escaping dancing with Pyronica, Kryptos and Hectorgon, and after that he had the entirety of the pyramid to explore. It was fascinating! There were so many rooms and hallways that twisted around. He had been walking straight down one for what felt like thirty minutes before he ended back at the loud party. Confused, he immediately turned back to the path. There was something odd, abnormal about the architecture, and Stanford Pines was going to figure it out! It only took a few open doors before he found what he wanted; some sort of study, yes, but more importantly there were books inside. He used his flight to hover up and look at the titles and spines at the top of the shelves, grabbing several to leaf through. He admired the varied languages and symbols etched onto the pages. He could probably spend the next fifty years just studying the contents of this one room alone and still be unsatisfied… That thought made something burn curiously inside him before he returned the tome.
Stanford lucked out when he picked what appeared to be an unfinished novel, half of the pages blank of writing that he could see, at least. He grinned and claimed the book as his own before returning to the problem of the Fearamid’s structure. The interior was so strange, and though he measured by footsteps, he was sure that several hallways should have connected where they did not. He tried to not include the stairs and paths above him yet as it would complicate the physics even more. It was extremely frustrating just attempting to figure out the floor he walked on! He sat down near a junction and tried to draw a new diagram to explain the pathways, but was interrupted by a sudden voice above him.
"You're still thinking like a human, stop limiting yourself to two dimensions." Ford didn't even look up at the now-familiar voice, nor the weight that settled on top of his head. Bill was just as touchy as always; affectionate but possessive in his caresses. Stanford had already given up on trying to discourage it and firmly told himself that even with that passive decision, he still didn't like it. Not a chance.
"Even when I consider a third dimension it doesn't make any sense, the corridors are just too long for the perimeter. It isn't possible. And that’s not even counting the directional inversion mechanic."
"You just aren't tryin' hard enough, Sixer."
"Not like you've been any help!" Stanford snapped at Bill and wished he could take it back. He felt the hand stop on his shoulders before spinning him around roughly. The usual gold color was gone, replaced by the pulsing orange of growing anger.
"Oh yeah? After everything I've done for ya? You think you're going to impress anyone with this thing? Got some plans for this little map I don't know about, smart guy?" Bill taunted him, trying to get his frustration under control.
He can't let Bill know that he's drawing the interior to help Dipper and the others if they ever need to infiltrate the Fearamid! think, think! "No, I― I just want to understand." Stanford answered quickly, and felt a twinge of truth somewhere inside him, he was curious after all. Bill calmed down at that, returning to his normal color on the spectrum. "I know it must work somehow, but I can't figure it out. I want to understand the weird logic of this place."
"You want to understand, Sixer?" Bill half-lids his eye and leaned in until he's touching the man's forehead. "I'll show ya~" To Ford's surprise he leaned farther, and something very odd happened. It felt like― well, most similar to how it felt when Bill used to possess his body, but not quite. It felt like standing on the edge of a vast, cold pool of water, slowly being submerged in its depths and for just a moment he does get it! He can see how all the twists of the architecture spiral around and through each other in a completely valid way― and then there is a sharp burn of pain and it's all gone! Stanford grasped at Bill without thinking and tried to pull him back, longing for that amazing knowledge to grace his mind again. But then he realized exactly what he was doing and unhanded the demigod, stepping back and growing red out of embarrassment. W-What was he doing? What was that sensation even?
"Woah there, eager aren't we? Hahah, don't wanna over do it, your primitive primate brain still can't handle mingling with me. Not to mention that rust square in your noggin makes it kinda unpleasant, it’s such a turn off!” Bill sighed overdramatically at that and then threw his thumb over his side, gesturing back to the crowd. “Anyway, how's about you put down your nerd book and come hang with the guys, we're gonna go down to the town and destroy some stuff. You in?"
Ah, THERE it was, the cruel havoc he’d awaited from these creatures. Stanford did not feel particularly up for destruction right now, but he did catch the underlying test in Bill's tone and swallowed inaudibly. He didn't have much of a choice if he was one of THEM now did he? Cipher was testing him for sure. "I suppose I could take a break from my calculations..." Miscalculations more like it.
"Excellent!" Of course Bill wasn't expecting, nor accepting, a no by now, but he noticed that human thing where Stanford’s skin crawled and made the tiny useless hairs fluff up and couldn't help but grin on the inside. Ah yes, good, this was going to be TONS of fun! The demigod had seen his pet squirm before on many levels, but this... Oh man, the things he had planned for this little outing would make his mind writhe with awful conflict and ridiculous fake philosophy! How long would his silly human morals last? Bill placed a hand against Stanford's upper back and guided him the other way, back towards the huge party room. "C'mon loosen up those limbs IQ, I know your flesh is decaying, but get with the program. You'll LOVE this!" He crinkled his single excited eye and gave the man a gentle shove.
Oh, was he that tense? Ford hadn't even noticed how clenched his fists were and he blinked at that, loosening his muscles up slowly to not appear as nervous. "Ah, of course." He took the hint from the triangle and stepped into the air, floating beside him. It had become much easier to navigate his flying now; his body felt much healthier afloat too, the usual back ache or leg cramps didn't bother him except for when he stayed grounded for too long. The scientist didn't notice any other after effects of using the magic bestowed upon him, but he was suspicious still as Bill seemed to want him to fly rather than walk... "Hm, isn't most of the town already in ruins?" Stanford asked matter-of-factly as he put his map notes away inside his coat; a pocket similar to the ones his journals used to be able to rest in separately years ago. Speaking of which, where were his old journals...? Bill took them from Dipper, but he never gave them back to him...
Good observation brainiac! Bill cackled and pulled him closer by snaking a hand around his waist. "Yeah, so?"
"... So what is there to destroy if everything is already in shambles?"
"Geez, just because most of the shindig is crashed, doesn't mean there isn't anything to play with y'know!"
What was the purpose of this field trip exactly...? He didn't get a chance to reply as the two arrived at the large chamber and was met with the cheering of the rest of the group.
"There you two are! Morpho almost bet you wouldn't come back for hours Boss, like yesterday and all!" Kryptos chuckled as Bill's bricks shifted in indignation and his colour changed hue for a moment. Oh yeah, he was still embarrassed about that! It's not like they didn't get it though!
Pyronica grinned. "It's fine Billy-boy. We get you want the big meat and all, take your time." She fluttered her eyelashes, leaning her elbows on Pacifier's head.
"Can we maybe go now? This talk of meat is making me hungry!" The talking maw spoke, twitching his tongue and spreading out his arms. "Think I saw a few humans over in the trees earlier."
Teeth was mostly characterized so far as being hungry and punny in Stanford's opinion, he made a lot of jokes earlier that some of the gang laughed heartily at (he only chuckled because he was spending time with Xanthar and Pacifier at that time.) This time his words were disturbing to his ears however and judging by the many excited grins present after that statement, the old man was certain destroying things were not the only thing Bill had in mind... It became increasingly colder in the air and he did his best to act nonchalant and composed. He wouldn’t have to ah, terribly hurt humans in some way, right..?
"Ohoho, sounds like a plan buddy!" Bill was back to his gleeful and bright yellow state of being. He rubbed his inky black hands together, the friction causing delighted sparks of blue flames to sizzle. "Well then, if everyone is ready,” he gave the group a look over. “Henchmaniacs, RULE OUT!" He cackled, the fire beaming from his palms and creating a shower of fireworks inside the room.
The energy caused the crew to shout even louder in excitement and they all took flight, soaring towards the exit that revealed itself from nowhere; panels shifting to allow the neon light to illuminate the path leading out into the scorching orange sky. Stanford followed suit, managing to control his flying well-enough now to be able to keep up with the loud group.
Okay, the man mostly followed the high-pitched triangle he'd known for too long of his life. The behavior he was sporting was nothing short of childish and wild, but by this point Ford wasn't too shocked by the crazy hooting. Those hours were in the past and now he had to focus on keeping his place with the group while simultaneously not involving himself in anything too horrible... He had to get closer to Bill, no matter how much he loathed to admit it. It wouldn't be possible to stab him in the back if he wasn't close to him after all... He also needed to keep an eye out for Dipper, Stanley, and Mabel in particular. He couldn't let the monsters see them, he couldn't use the 'they're just kids!' spiel he'd used last time, Bill wouldn't accept it twice... No, he had to keep them safe. That's the least he could do for now!
"WOOOHO!" Keyhole soared back to Stanford and grinned. "Watch’er thinking about Sixer?"
"Oh? A lot of things I suppose... I've noticed my sight is a bit clearer." He looked at the smaller being. Keyhole was one of the monsters he got on the best with so far! Mostly because he quickly realized he was very analytically inclined as well. More the mad kind granted, but they had bonded so far over strange interdimensional tales. Not to mention he had a strange fascination with keys and he himself used to collect keyrings with extra-terrestrial shapes in his youth. It was something they both found rather funny, especially after last night’s drinks too.
"So you don't need those thin pieces of glass anymore, eh?"
"I do, but my sight is gradually getting better instead of worse. At this rate I'll assume I won't need them in a few days at the most." It was a somewhat frightening thought, considering he'd had glasses his whole life! They had been absolutely essential to his survival, and soon... they might be nothing more than hindrances, keeping him from truly seeing what was in front of him.
"Hm, I guess your body respond well to the magic, that's good! It's probably taking away some of your more ‘human problems’, improving you and all. Healthy growth!"
There it was again... Something that actually made Stanford suspicious was how Bill and the rest of the monsters were treating his humanity. Bill barely acknowledged he was human anymore aside from his 'fleshbag' quips and pulling him away from lethal games and the others were almost the same in regards to that. Keyhole made his sight into a human problem he'd be cured of, and it didn't sit well with him! What did it all mean? Why didn't they acknowledge his humanity as an aspect of his being rather than a hindrance? "...Right. For me it's always been healthy, it's been a part of me since birth after all." That brought up a memory of how he had chastised his twin for not wearing his glasses in early middle school.
"C'mon Stanley, you need them just as much as I do!"
"Hah, I can see just fine from here. I don't need those dorky square things!"
"... Would you rather wear MINE?"
"We have the same problem with our eyes, so just pick which pair is the least 'dorky' to you okay?"
Obviously Stanley had picked his ones, but he only wore them for a while when at home, then it was back to not giving a yargh about his sight. It was a strangely fond memory he had of their childhood times. So different from now.
"Well, you don't need to worry about that anymore! It'll be fixed, just give it time, pal." Keyhole winked and descended as the crew moved closer to ground, passing the huge goat Gompers chewing on the screeching water tower. "Hey, how's about we paint that boring sign over there with my acid?"
"Not if I get it first!" Teeth cackled and sped off towards the sign in question. 'Welcome to Gravity Falls'
"H-Hey! You don't even have anything to paint with, idiot!" The blue creature yelled and flew after him angrily.
"I CAN EAT IT!"
"THAT'S NOT PAINTING!"
Bill placed his arms at his sides in humor. "Well, so much for being subtle. I located some of the humans, they're further into the woods but what’s interesting is,” he tapped his hat carefully, “there’s some more underground somewhere but I can’t find their exact position, something is blocking my sight…”
Stanford’s heart skipped a beat at that. The bunker!? It was heavily reinforced by runes and anti-Bill sigils; the same ones he’d carved into the metal plate situated inside his head… That meant they weren’t far from the shack either! Outskirt of the town really, it made sense considering the sign Teeth was trying to chew on...
“Wow, what sorta barrier can that be?” The pink demoness asked, looking surprised.
“Well, it’s of a familiar design I’d say…” Bill’s pupil swiveled around to look at the old man and he zoomed in to sling an arm around his shoulders. “Fordsy, you wouldn’t happen to have anything to do with it, would ya?”
Standing absolutely still he waited for his heart to start beating again properly before trying to think of an answer. Should he lie? Should he pretend he didn't know anything about it? No... He couldn't deny his involvement, even if it wasn't recent. "I― well, I did create a bunker years ago as an emergency shelter in case of... paranormal fallout. Or nuclear fallout, for that matter. And after our― after... what happened to Fiddleford, I did take some precautions warding it..." Ford felt several pairs of eyes turn to regard him and fingers patting his shoulder. But, Bill didn't look mad exactly, maybe he'd still survive yet...
"Hah! It was a pretty bad breakup, not like I blame you or nothin'. Pretty clever making it so I can't see inside neither... guessin' ol banjo found his way back to it.” The triangular demigod got a malicious gleam in his single eye as he looked at the squad. “Do ya remember Fiddlesticks guys? Maybe we should pay him a visit, give him a few new nightmares to forget~" Several of the demons snicker at the suggestion and Ford does his best to backpedal.
“I really don’t think…” Stanford began, though his voice faded into the background once the monsters around him began speaking over him.
“He was fun to torment.” Pacifier remarked with a subtle grin that made the human’s blood grow cold. No way, they couldn’t have… It had been over thirty years ago, but he remembered the crazed look in Fiddleford’s eye after he was submerged in the Portal. Whatever he had seen, it had been too horrible for the man to even speak about. It had been so horrible that he invented a way to forget and formed a strange cult movement of some kind. What had he said… When gravity falls and earth becomes sky, fear the beast with just one eye!
“Too bad he didn’t stick around, we could have had so much fun with him…” Pyronica sighed dramatically and pouted as if Fiddleford had just been some stranger at a party instead of a man partially displaced into Bill’s nightmare realm. “Fordsy, you should totally invite him back to play!”
"Well― he's probably holed up good and tight, he was rather paranoid after the incident, understandably. He's the only other person that knows about the bunker..." Stanford spoke up but―
The conversation was interrupted by a loud distant scream followed by the brief crashing sound of a chase quickly ended. 8-ball reappeared holding aloft a struggling human who kept trying to wriggle free of his jacket, or else punch the monster with his fists. "H-Hey! Let me go! Fuckin' let go of me!" The guy shouted and Ford felt his heart drop at the sight. Teeth abandoned the half-eaten sign to sniff around curiously with a few other demons following to inspect their prey.
"Ooooh, it's a lively one! Good catch, Eyes~" Pyronica cooed and poked at the human's front. He didn't look much older than a teenager to Ford and, of course, the boy violently pulled away from the flaming demoness.
"Y-You stay back, fuckin’, just stay back okay, don't touch me! Lemme go man!" Teeth jumped up at that and grabbed the edge of his pants between incisors, ripping them down the side. 8-ball, either out of shock from the sudden extra weight or actually listening to his captive's plea, dropped the human several feet to the ground below. He scrambled away frantically, but unfortunately it didn’t take long for the gang to pounce on him again. Bill cackling as he tossed the human to Hectorgon and he in turn held him right out of Teeth’s jumping distance, goading the maw on. Stanford was frozen in place as he watched, reminded sickeningly of kids on the schoolyard that cornered a small animal to torment while laughing. This was all just a fun horrible game to them, but to that kid...
"What's the matter, Sixer, feelin' left out? Come on, give it a shot, it's fun! Hey guys let Fordsy have a turn, hm?" Bill laughed gleefully and pushed the man forward to the cheers of the monster crew. He tried to stutter and make excuses; he knew this is some sort of test from Cipher, but even then he doesn't think he can do what they ask of him. It was his cover and he had to maintain it to be able to do what he was planning, but― Pyronica grabbed the guy from Kryptos who hadn’t done much and threw him toward Stanford with only a 'hot potato!' as warning. Not about to let the young man hit the ground he reached out to grab the bruised kid as gently as possible. Oh god, he’s so small in comparison to him! It wasn’t until now that he realized just how different his size truly was from before. He could hold the boy in his hands... Like as if he was just a prop! H-How horrible it was to see this! This was one of his kin after all, a human.
"Hey― hey it's okay. I have you now. Uh..." Ford looked down at how the teenager fitted in both of his hands again and tear-filled eyes met his own. So small... For a second he's struck by the sort of intrusive thought that tells him how easy it would be to hurt the kid, but instead of acting on it he glanced around for guidance. Bill of course gave him an enthusiastic thumbs up, and only Kryptos looked in any way uncomfortable about the entire situation, holding onto his silvery frame. A small sob escaped the person in his hands and he looked back down at the tiny cracking voice.
"C'mon man, just, l-lemme go, help me out here, I don't wanna die..."
"He will not do it." Pacifier said with a rumble after picking out his pacifier from his belly. Teeth backing him up by shouting a loud 'booooo' of disappointment while flailing his arms.
It was true though, he just... hurting another person? It seemed needlessly cruel...
Taking the initiative, Pyronica stepped forward and plucked the small person from Ford's grasp, dangling him over Teeth again before the man can try to grab the kid back.
"Aww, Sixer's no fun! Wanna split it with me, Teeth?" She cackled and taunted the maw anew by almost letting him have the screaming person before pulling him just out of reach again. Ford made a move to try and stop her, but this time he felt Bill’s hand on his shoulder holding him back. On the third try the frustrated monster's vicious mouth found purchase and he clamped down hard on a leg.
"Hey! I didn't say you could have all of him, learn to share you glutton!" Tugging hard on him, there was a horrible moment before flesh and bone gave way to their superior strength. The image was surreal and it almost would have been less awful if there was a lot of blood. It was nothing like the movies but it did remind him ruthlessly of some things... The sound of the teenager’s leg popping from its socket and muscle wetly tearing―
Ford turned and ran into the forest as nausea and flashbacks of horrific scenes beyond the Portal overcame him, the sound of exalted laughter and chewing noises almost drowning out the screams of pain. He collapsed by some bushes and quickly lost his stomach contents into them, hands shaking. No, his entire body was shaking! The burning sensation in his throat made it harder to breathe! Oh god... Why did he think he could do this, blend in with these monsters, try and befriend them? For what! To try and beat Bill Cipher!? Like he had a chance of that… The old man’s eyes widened as the panic and terror wouldn’t leave his trembling body. T-This was all a mistake. He was leaving, he HAD to! This was completely out of his control…! He was going to― of course! The bunker, maybe... maybe Dipper and the others had made it there? He could still― Before the thought even finished forming in his mind he started running toward the hidden entrance. H-He couldn’t stay close to the busy sound of the m-monsters, he felt sick all over! He couldn’t control his emotions in this state.
Finding the fake tree that hid the switch, Stanford desperately reached for it― but stopped due to a sudden shock.. W-What? He tried again, hand stopping at the same point and the unpleasant surge rebuffing him. Moving away from the tree he extended his arm in a different direction, finding nothing to stop him, and moved back toward the bunker entrance. Panic faded a tad bit as curiosity took over in light of this odd phenomenon. Walking in a circle around the tree, Stanford confirmed that there is clearly a wall stopping him from reaching inside the area. A sort of barrier― The scientist’s mouth dropped open as he realized exactly WHAT was repelling him. The wards! In creating them he selected the sigils that would stop any sort of demonic energy or magical creature from getting into the safehouse― The energies and changes that Bill had given him prevented him from getting into his own building; the bunker. As long as the wards held, he'd prevented himself from even running away to a safe place, like a coward... Falling to his knees Ford sat on the ground, feeling numb, oblivious to his surroundings.
'Cause, darling, I'm a nightmare dressed like a daydream
[Isa]:* LAUGHING TRACK PLAYS IN THE BACKGROUND WHILE THE LIGHT FLICKER ON AND OFF* wELCOME TO HELL WELCOME TO HELL WELC
Chapter 4: Meat's back on the menu, boys!
[swift] Graphic Depiction of Violence warning, seriously, the reason we flagged the entire fic for that was BECAUSE of this part. Also sorry about this chapter taking forever to get out, holidays happened and we were both super busy and this chapter needed more editing than the previous ones. ANYWAY.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
You are the scars all over me
The mess left from the secrets that you keep
Didn't know you were slowly going psycho
I am the ash of your blaze
Stanford felt his heart pounding against his ribs, the ringing in his ears drowned out any sounds from his surrounding and the rising panic made it more difficult to see clearly. His own ward had rejected him… He was being treated as a hostile force according to its design. A monster. By giving him these powers; this pulsing magic, Bill had isolated him from his safe house! If this was how it reacted to him… exactly how would the barrier around his house treat him!? I-It was all so hard to digest…! He focused on breathing normally, inhaling deeply and exhaling to calm his racing heart and worries. No… he wasn’t a monster! What he’d witnessed Cipher’s group doing was monstrous but he’d never do something like that! He couldn’t…
The old man felt a sting in his throat as he thought about what to do. He could wander to his house and at least... see how the ward would react to him. He couldn’t deny he was worried about the kids and Stanley! Stanford’s breath hitched, his throat feeling sore and parched. Would he be able to face them like this? Just facing the ward protecting the house seemed daunting enough right now. But he… he had to do something!
He could wait around here until someone left the bunker, but knowing for how many years he and McGucket had stocked the place for, the thought was slim… Not to mention he didn’t wish to outright show Bill the bunker’s location, considering what he’d just seen happening to a human they’d randomly found. Even though he’d mentioned the barrier blocking his sight, the demon might be powerful enough to break through it somehow. Especially if it would bother him in the first place. Cipher loved to get under his skin. And with all the time in the world, even if he couldn’t destroy the ward, he could outlast them. The remaining survivors laid siege by an impossibly old demon.
There weren’t many options for the scientist. The last resort was returning to them, Cipher and his group, which wasn’t appealing to him in any way. He only wanted to reunite with his family at this point. Too old, too tired for this little game. How could he possibly have come to the conclusion that he could pretend to be on Bill’s side to take him down? This was ridiculous! He could help much better if he protected his family and aided them in understanding the nature of Bill’s weaknesses… Being a disguised hero, was it really worth it at all? The things he was expected to do as ‘one of the freaks’ was simply barbaric. Something only true monsters did!
Stanford sighed before he pushed himself up wearily, drying his running nose on a sleeve and observing the red pulsing glow around his hand. It didn’t feel so empowering right now, it felt imprisoning and dangerous (and still hungry.) Looking up at the hellish red sky, he decided to take the walk to his house and at least try his luck there before returning to the town. He had to try, no matter how much his emotions got in the way, and if he found Stanley he could―
“Theeere you are!”
The human froze at the nasal gleeful pitch, neck hair standing on edge.
“Man, you sure chickened out there Sixer! What with the inside-out stomach thing and all!” Bill floated closer and watched him. “Don’t worry though, we’re gonna chase the rest of ‘em out there. You’ll get another chance in no time!” He crinkled his eye jovially and flew up to him, slinging his arm casually around his shoulders. “And hey, we can always share y’know~” He reached to touch his pet’s cheek and stilled momentarily once he felt a slight disturbance in the energy around him. Huh?
Looking beyond human sight, Bill stared at the purplish crackling barrier in front of him. Oh… OH! He started to tremble in growing amusement. The hysterical laughter followed shortly; high-pitched and insane. Now it made PERFECT sense why he’d collapsed in this spot! “OH MAN! You were trying to… AH-HAHAA!” He wiped away an imaginary tear. “You thought you could just slink into that shelter-thing, huh? What were ya tryin’ to accomplish with that? See the Pinenuts again?” It was TOO FUNNY! “You thought you could just walk through your own warding against my magic! Oh, Fordsy… Your stupidity is too cute sometimes!” Bill ruffled his hair fondly and pulled him into the air. “I told ya already; you’re one of US now. Not one of THEM.”
“But I…” Stanford wasn’t sure how to continue, he felt drained the moment Cipher touched him! It hurt to realize that his words had more of an effect on him than ever. “They are my family―“ He froze anew once he felt that hand grow tighter around his shoulder.
“So what? Look, they’ve done absolutely nothing but hold you back! Stop clinging so tightly to humans, it’s not cool.”
“But I AM human, Bill!” Stanford finally let out and glared. “I can’t do those horrible things that you do, I can’t…!” He was feeling ready to vomit again when he sensed his throat burn, and while airborne it felt even worse! Hold it back! Hold it back…!
“Can’t, or won’t?” The demigod wasn’t impressed with that answer at all. He had a LOT of work to do if this was gonna end in his favor. Perhaps some force was necessary…? It worked with Sixer in the past. Sort of. “You know what, it doesn’t matter which! ‘Cause you’re gonna do it anyway.” Cipher made sure to sound more on the gleeful side, rather than intimidating. Of course he realized by now he miiight have been too excited earlier when he pushed Stanford into their game. Force was good, but he should probably be more 'supportive' to make sure the group pressure didn’t make him have a heart attack or something… Ugh, fragile mortals.
“W-What? I told you I CAN’T!” All of a sudden the grip on his shoulder was stronger than steel and it felt sharp and coercive; dangerous.
“That’s just your limited human perception talkin’ codswallop! I’ll guide ya every step of the way this time. And hey! Then we can share too, ain’t that nice?”
Share WHAT exactly!? The man felt trapped, and somehow the magic around felt suffocating! He… No, he had to find his family! “N-No I…” It was getting difficult to produce coherent words. All of a sudden dizziness enveloped him and his head felt thick.
“Hey guys, found more stragglers yet?”
Oh no… The sickness came from Bill teleporting them! He covered his mouth when he felt bile rise again. God, teleporting did not feel good!
“Yeah, boss! 8-Ball and ‘Ronica are rounding them up…” Kryptos provided and gave Stanford a small smile. “You okay now, Sixer?” He kind of understood why the mortal acted the way he did, more than the others of the gang at least.… He used to be rather squeamish too after all. Some things still made him rather nervous to watch or do.
“Yeah, just human nonsense gettin’ in the way of the fun!” Bill laughed, squeezing his pet against him. “It’ll be all right now.”
“Jolly good, they’re drivin’ ‘em in now!” The dapper lava lamp (actually called Weird Jake) interrupted and grinned at the pale pink flames lighting up the distance and the screams of terror growing closer.
“Herding them like dumb sheep, good idea!” Keyhole cheered and rubbed his small hands together, a grin forming on his face when he distinguished the first humans running. “I wonder how many I can hit with my acid!”
“A leg on like, three tops!” Bill taunted casually, making the old man in his grasp pale at the realization of what they were betting about. These people, these survivors were being chased into a trap, like lambs being led to slaughter…
“Get ready to lose then.” The blue creature licked his lips, lime green ooze producing from his palms and shaping into projectiles.
Stanford could see the humans now too; one was a woman clutching a young child in her arms, two were male, another teenager… Most likely that former lad’s girlfriend by the looks of it. There was an older woman being snatched up by 8-Ball and… A guy fighting against Pyronica who cackled demonically. There were more emerging. Had they chased out a whole camp of survivors!?
Bill gleamed excitedly as Keyhole unleashed his acid attacks, tossing them towards the panicking people; one hitting the teenage girl right in the face and muffling her screams of pain as the acid burnt away skin and sizzled her pale flesh. “Nice shot!” Ah, he couldn’t help getting impatient when he saw the chaos happening all around, sensing the FEAR from their prey. It was such an uplifting and empowering feeling! He cackled as the girl stumbled and fell, being jumped on by Hectorgon and Kryptos moments after. Oooh! That hexagon could sure rip guts out when he unsheathed his claws! Kryptos was pretty lame though, letting the other shape do the real messy work, but eh, he's a square after all!
The triangle noticed how tense and uncomfortable his pet behaved and patted his shoulder gently. “Y’know, instead of peer-pressure giving ya a chicken attack again, we’ll start slow from here. You’re a good hunter with your guns; I’m sure you’ll be just as good with fire!”
Stanford was about to protest, legs trembling when Bill grasped his hands to softly guide them towards the mayhem. Oh god, was that Pyronica eating someone whole!? “Fire is the next step in magic. Any of the four main elements are, but fire is more my thing, ya dig?” He listened somewhat distantly and couldn’t help sweating from the massacre he was subjected to. Again his stomach heaved threateningly.
The mess Keyhole's acid attacks left was worse than watching Teeth ripping off a boy's leg! The whole situation felt crazy and unreal. Was he disassociating? Oh god, he was, wasn’t he? He felt like he was floating out of his cold body. Flashes of monstrous battles and bloody encounters during his time as an interdimensional traveller re-entered his mind, as fresh as earlier. Bill’s sharp voice brought him back to reality.
“Focus! Do you feel it?”
He surprisingly did. A warmth spread through him and cleared his mind slowly. He wet his lips as a certain calm washed over him, making his sickness subside. The images in his head blurred into more or less controllable shapes he could banish back to the dark recesses of his mind. W-Where did his panic go…? His anxiety…? He felt better, but he had no idea what he was supposed to feel. “I… I don’t know―!“ Stanford gasped when his hands caught fire, the bright yellow flames sizzling in his palm. “What?” How did that happen? Oh... Bill was helping him, wasn't he? That could be the only explanation. He wasn’t nearly focused enough to bring forth fire on his own, right…?
“Good, now direct that energy towards,” Bill paused to choose an untouched target in the chaos, “that woman.”
“Don’t argue, just do it!”
The force from his tone made Stanford shiver and he felt the demigod’s hands guiding him, again, spreading out his fire-coated fingers. He sighed inwardly as he had no way to escape this time. There was no chance to run, nowhere to hide, nothing to do... except doing as he was told. One of Bill’s hands secured his shoulder so he couldn’t jerk away and the geometry was in a sense blocking any escape as well. W-What was he going to do!? Was his plans really worth this? Hurting, no, killing that poor innocent woman and her child!? For the greater good? “The end justifies the means.” Ford’s mind whispered, strangely serene. T-That’s right… In a way. The future generations would understand, wouldn't they...
The old man tried desperately to think of this as another particularly messy hunting mission back on Planet 23. They weren’t people, they were just things, just animals he told himself as he took aim. Nevertheless, his whole being became numb and almost limp as he watched the mother fall. She clutched her screeching child as the fire sizzled her legs, sticking to her no matter how she tried to put it out. Her agony was loud enough to drown out the toddler’s wailing. Oh god...
Bill’s laughing grew in volume and his eye widened in glee, crinkling after he gave the man a butterfly kiss with his long lashes. “Good job, IQ! See, knew you could do it, stop selling yourself short with that human nonsense! You're so much better than that.”
“She’s burning…” Stanford said, his voice lost under the sounds of slaughter around them. The smell of death heavy and strong in the air; there was so much blood and gore no matter where his pupils tried to escape...
“Yeah isn’t it GREAT! It feels great, right? See, this is what being a winner is all about Fordsy. You take what ya want and damn every other sucker! Speaking of which, let’s go and make sure no one else snatches our catch, shall we?” Bill didn’t wait for a response and zoomed them closer to the human writhing in pain yet still protecting her bawling child. “Aw, it’s a baby! Did’ya know babies are really delicious? Pure souls, untainted meat and blood. The best kinda snack really!” Bill scooped up the screaming toddler by its leg despite the pleas from the woman and cackled as he half-turned to Stanford. “So what do you say, now or?”
“L-Leave my child alone, PLEASE I-I’M BEGGING YOU!”
She reached up desperately, but Bill kept the wailing bundle just out of reach. Ford felt a bit sick as he watched him taunt the woman, allowing her to almost catch on before its tiny hand would slip between her shaking fingers. There was no purpose to this… Bill turned the child over in his hands, still ignoring the mother’s pleas. Then, to Ford’s surprise, he sort of… bounced the child until its cries faded into whimpers.
“Cute, huh Fordsy? Your like… meat-brain is programmed to think these things are cute, right?” He sounded so detatched, like he was discussing an insect he’d found on the floor. “Some sort of weird pack behavior. See a kid, protect it. Still got those weak human instincts, buddy?” Their eyes met and Bill dug his fingers into the infant’s leg until it screamed again. Ford felt his mouth go dry and he couldn’t move… couldn’t speak. “Could let it go! How long you think momma and the tyke are gonna last in my new world? Buuut… I’ve been lookin’ forward to this, ya know!”
“Please..!” The woman collapsed on the ground and Bill crinkled his eye with a smile. A smile that made Stanford’s spine shiver.
“To what…?” He was almost scared to ask.
“Didn’ya listen before? Oh well! You’ll see~”
Stanford watched in a transfixed horror as Bill’s eye split to reveal a grinning sharp-toothed maw. A black forked tongue slithered out to touch the baby before the triangle drew it closer. W-WHAT WAS HE LOOKING AT!? It was simultaneously disgusting and…and… fascinating! What was he thinking!? Stanford was thoroughly disgusted with himself at considering THIS kind of abomination fascinating! This was MONSTROUS! He’d… He’d… He grew pale again when he realized what Bill was intending to do. Oh god...
He wanted to scream when Bill chomped down with his teeth, tearing off the screeching child’s legs and abdomen with a sick squelch. Blood spilled everywhere in a messy fashion and the man floated in his numbed state, eyes glazing as he realized there was nothing he could do to stop this. He stared at the crimson now staining his coat and swallowed thickly, choosing to avert his gaze instead of staring at the god slurping noisily. W-Why didn’t he eat it quickly if he just HAD to eat it at all!? Why make it so showy and prolonged and bloody and― The observant part of him did notice how the blood pouring down Cipher’s body vanished somehow...was it being absorbed?
As it was, it was a horrible mistake to look down. Stanford met the mother’s terrified, teary and despaired eyes and though the flames had extinguished already the damage was done. They caused her agony from the severe burns without even the release of actual death. “I’m…”
“D-Don’t touch me, y-you…You MONSTER! H-How could you just WATCH IT!? M-My baby… my―!”
Stanford froze at that, his eyes widening in painful realization that this woman, who just saw her own child be devoured, she didn’t see him as any different from the being who did the act. Inaction made him an accomplice of the perpetrators and therefore, he was a monster too in her eyes.
“That’s right! But guess what momma, this world is now monster turf!” Bill laughed cruelly as he licked his lips and folded back his gleeful eye. “And you tiny simple-minded apes are nothing but our playthings!” He tossed an arm around his pet's waist, presenting him with something in his free palm. “Had to slow myself down a bit, but I saved this for ya. Go on, it’s divine~”
A tiny human heart.
Stanford almost wanted to cry because of the disgusting associations being dragged up. Giving someone a heart now wasn’t that romantic… Too bad it was a REAL heart! His throat didn’t sting anymore, his stomach had nothing more to offer. But that didn’t stop the crawling discomfort from making him shiver. Something within him just wanted to run away and hide, sink through the ground. Something wanted to break, no, something WAS breaking!
It made sense why Dipper thought of him as dangerous and ran away. Why this woman called him a monster and recoiled. Why he couldn’t step through his own warding. The man swallowed thickly but didn’t have any energy or strong will to protest when Bill pushed the human flesh against his lips. He had to… He had to do this. No matter how much it hurt him right now, it would all be worth it in the end when he’d defeated Cipher, right..? Yes. He had to stick to the plan somehow. Despite his inner turmoil and conflict, it meant nothing in comparison to a desirable future for everyone else. He had to focus on his intellect and not his personal feelings… Somehow. He had to!
To his horror, he found the taste of the warm raw meat similar to pork or veal. If he hadn’t known it was a human heart, he’d probably been thoroughly fooled into actually enjoying it like any other food. Pig heart wasn’t that bad after all...
“Atta boy.” Bill cooed and gave his neck a nice scratch, right beneath his ear where he was a bit sensitive. This was a good start; he’d turn out just fine with time! Maybe some force was necessary sometimes but he was pleased by this development. He should reward his Fordsy when they got back home.
Ford couldn't help but shiver when fingers rubbed behind his ear, moving soothingly around the shell to his sideburns before reversing. It helped, a little, and he hated that. He didn't want to be comforted and told that this was okay, he wanted to feel disgust, horror, and guilt.
“Six shots, BOOYAH!” Keyhole cackled and placed his hands at his sides, he glanced at the two with a curious gleam. Did Sixer manage to do anything this time? It looked like it!
“Oh, not bad buddy, better than last time. Go on, take your leg.” Bill commented airily and kept stroking the man gently. Encouragement and rewards, that’s what you needed to properly train someone.
Bill doted some affection on his favorite for a while since most of the monster crew were busy still having their own fun. Keyhole was slinking closer to the burnt frightened human, probably intending to take that leg he was owed from her, but he pretended not to notice. They should hesitate to touch things that were _his_ after all. But, to his surprise, when the little blue demon grabbed onto her scorched leg and she started protesting Ford suddenly awoke from his stupor.
"W-Wait, what are you doing?" He asked and pulled out of Bill's grip, causing Keyhole to drop her, his eyes flicking between the human and the triangle.
"Bet was I could get a leg, In fact, since I got twice as many hits, I should get two legs! Didn't seem like you wanted this slab of meat anyway sooo..." Slowly he reached back toward the woman, who had been trying to crawl away weakly.
"While she's still―" The man swallowed and knew the answer to that before he even asked. He had to do something, he couldn't just let her suffer anymore after what he put her through. After what he letBill do.... The triangle watched gears turning in Stanford's mind curiously, wondering what he had planned. He gave Keyhole a subtle gesture to wait when Ford took a step over to where the human rested in the dirt. "I... I'm sorry, I'm so sorry..." He muttered as he knelt down over her smaller form and placed a hand across her mouth. The other moved to cradle the back of her skull. Incoherent apologies kept spilling under his breath as he focused his energy and fire smoldered under his palms. If he could just do this quickly he could spare her; it was a much nicer thing to do then let her get ripped apart alive. That's what Ford had to tell himself as she thrashed under him, fists pounding into his arms. She fought him with surprising strength and he had to admire that, but he would not stop. He kept going, despite the sickening smell of burning hair and, eventually, the feeling of bone crumbling between his fingers. She had long since stopped moving and yet he didn't cease the outpour of fire until there was nothing but ash in his hands.
Bill felt almost giddy; that initiative! Let him justify his actions to himself, tell his own little lies, all that mattered was the end result. Ford would see that soon, he'd give in and admit how wonderful it felt to win.
The man stood up, feeling numb and no matter how he wished it the tears wouldn't come. He barely noticed that several of the monster crew were watching him, with Keyhole looking the most impressed. He was the first to speak up amongst them.
"Woah! That was way brutal, I like it! More personal that way with your hands, ranged is really more my thing." Stanford stayed put, even as the small demon moved forward again to grab the body. That was all she was now, a body, dead meat. It was a lot easier to think of her that way now that she lacked a face... "You don't want the second leg, right?" Since he received no protest from Sixer, he just went ahead and took it, dragging her a little ways off.
Bill floated back down to Stanford before bothering to look around at what everyone else was doing, apparently they were still having fun with the remains of the catch. Pacifier had been brutally smacking a human against the ground repeatedly. Probably for a while too, judging by what was left. Amorphous Shape was waving its tendrils wildly as it rolls about in blood and offal. Or, well, folds and unfolds through it. Seemed a bit dirty to Cipher but he didn't judge~
Pyronica sauntered over to Ford with a devilish grin on her face, and he knew she was up to something. Better keep an eye on her, but he couldn’t doubt he was curious. Pink tended to come up with great games.
"Heya Fordsey, why lookin' so glum? Didn't get your share?" She teased him, resting her chin against a palm while looking him over. His eyes were glazed over from shock still, but that didn’t stop her. With a grin she stepped into his personal space. "Hold on, you've got somethin' on your face there sugar, lemme get it for you~" Sweeping him up against her body she planted a kiss against his mouth. Weakly protesting, Stanford put a hand against her gut to push her away and is horrified when he felt something thrash inside. That certainly startled him awake, but when he tried to open his mouth and protest Pyronica shoved her long tongue halfway down his throat, cleaning the remains of that heart from his teeth.
Bill couldn’t help but laugh at it and pressed up against Stanford's back so he was trapped between them. "Look at that IQ, you're finally a winner with the ladies!" He ran his hands up beneath the yellow shirt so he could stroke at the man's sides. Each cut and healed scar was practically made for exploring and he loved them all. Pyronica leaned to the side just enough to lock eye to eye with Bill without ceasing her snog with Ford. Her grin increased slightly and she finally broke off the kiss, letting a very ruffled and flustered old man up for breath.
His emotions were all over the place and he panted, overwhelmed. After the shock and horror the demons subjected him to, this sort of attention was entirely unexpected and as awful and selfish as it was... he would much rather cling to this than deal with the weight of his own actions. Ford leaned toward Pyronica slowly, but she only snickered at him.
"Ah-ah-ah, you're real cute and all, but I think Billy-boy would get pretty mad if I stole you from him, hm?" She bared her teeth in a blood-stained grin and spun Stanford around until his back rested against her chest, his face now only inches away from Cipher’s half-lidded eye instead. Pyronica busied herself by running her hands down his front, smoothing out his sweater in an obvious tease. For a moment, he wasn't sure what to do; the demon lady at the very least was far more humanoid. Not to mention, in the... well, in the past, his relationship with Bill had been a little one-sided. Reaching up, he carefully pulled the demigod to him and after a moment's hesitation planted a kiss to the corner of his eye. Their fields of energy crackled again where they intersected and he let out a small gasp, or maybe that was due to a roaming hand that slid between his thighs.
”Oh Sixer, you sure know how to make my bricks tingle~” Bill teased, gently stroking and kneading the inside of his thigh. “How ‘bout I get a taste this time hmm?” The sounds he elicited from the man were delicious, and he reeeally wanted more of that!
Stanford’s face grew redder as the touch increased and travelled higher, ghosting around his groin. He couldn’t swallow all the gasps and whimpers his throat produced at this stimulation. His body felt warmer and it didn’t reject any of their attention. His mind however… That was a different story! His mind was in chaos at this. After all this bloodshed and death, this was NOT an appropriate thing to engage in right now! Most definitely not from these…these monsters! But even so… His mind hazily dragged up memories of happier times. The days Stanford spent with his beloved ‘muse’ and they’d sometimes touch each other almost like this, the difference was his own participation now. Which didn’t come as a surprise; OF COURSE he didn’t want to hurt himself like that all over again! Bill had betrayed him, lied about everything, and robbed years of his life! Even after everything he still kept his attention on him! It wasn’t just years they spent building the portal, but also all the days he’d spent hallucinating and nights frozen by nightmares that allowed no mercy. The evening he installed the plate was vivid in his head and a testament to his dedication to finally be rid of Cipher. But no… Memories continued to haunt him and hurt him again and again and again… Bill hadn’t just left him with a broken heart and mad psyche, but also paranoia for getting close to ANYONE. In a twisted sense… He had driven Stanford to isolation in regards to anyone and anything but himself, considering Bill was unfortunately always on his mind in one way or the other…
He should hate this. He should push away and be disgusted by the attention he received! Stanford knew this and utterly LOATHED how much this stimulation made him feel alive and special again. It made old emotions resurface and the static touch of the demigod was warm enough to remind him of how excited he used to be about spending time with him. Back when he was naïve and young… It hurt… But it also felt so great to have this again. It was disgusting and weak, but deep down, beneath his reprimanding voice of reason, he wanted this.
Even watching Bill’s incredibly horrific mouth split open couldn’t stop the feelings. Why… W-Why did he still… Oh god…! The old man didn’t protest when the triangular being leaned towards him; he was too busy staring transfixed at the inside of the mouth. Where… Was his eye? All he could see was a dark void with cosmic vivid specks deep in there… H-How did it even work!? Stanford jumped a little at the contact of lips against his own. They felt soft. His shock was lifted and replaced with a gasp parting his lips when Bill squeezed his crotch slightly. The hands against his side and front also moved underneath the sweater now! He blushed even harder and felt sweat trickle down his neck. W-Was that a tongue!?
Pyronica grinned as she watched the two make out. Sure, Billy’s mouth was a bit strange, but he wasn’t a bad kisser! She felt the dips and dents from old scars and traced them in interest. Oooh, what was Sixer hiding under his clothes, huh?~ She glanced down at the inky hand caressing the man’s front and chuckled inwardly. He wouldn’t mind if she undressed him a little, right? With that she moved her flame-gloved hands to slip off the coat he was wearing.
Bill didn’t have trouble slipping his forked tongue in, at least not once he got him to open his pretty little mouth that is! The tongue that met him proved no match to engage, again, a little incentive was in order, but no biggie! Man, his pet sure tasted good though, the conflict and corruption building inside of him? Oh boy, delicious indeed! Hm, would he mind if he kicked it up a notch? Nah. Bill slipped one of his hands closer to the hem of Stanford’s pants, teasing the skin beneath. He was idly aware of Pyronica taking off his coat and approved.
“Is this really the best place for this, guys?” Kryptos spoke up as he wrung his hands together.“I, uh…” He paused when he saw the look Keyhole shot him.
”What, you feelin’ left out darling?” Pyronica snickered and floated off a little towards him to give Cipher room to play with his pet.
“T-That’s not it!” The illuminati compass placed his gloved hands behind his back. “I just thought… well,” he gestured towards Pacifier still pounding the mass of flesh against a rock while 8-Ball hooted beside him. “Is this the right place to get uh,” Kryptos looked at what his boss was doing.
“Oh, chill your square sides before they get too excited, would ya?” Bill leaned back from his snogging and blinked back his eye to stare at Kryptos with an annoyed look. What a killjoy… He gave Stanford a last squeeze around his twitching length before sliding his hand out. “Don’t worry Fordsy, there’s plenty more where that came from, we’ll continue later.”
“Uh…” Stanford was in a daze. The kiss must have been the strangest experience he’d been through yet! It was indescribable… Numbing, thrilling, ethereal and intoxicating! T-There must have been something in that saliva…? Or whatever it was! He reached up a trembling hand to touch his lips where a thin trail of it still lingered. It felt thicker than normal saliva and… It was darker. It prickled his sensitive skin, but not unpleasantly. Making out like that with Cipher had not been something he’d expected to happen! But… He liked it? Somehow…?
Disgusting. His sentiments were so disgusting! The old man swallowed and tried to regain his breath. W-What just happened!? Had Bill just…fondled his private parts? Was that something he hallucinated? Oh god…! Stanford blinked and grew even hotter in his cheeks, nose and ears turning beet red from the thought. Oh god…This was all so wrong! Foolish emotions clouding his better judgement!
“Aw, I liked where that was goin’.” The pink demoness pouted as her boss stopped. “Maybe we can continue back at HQ?” She grinned and placed her arms around Kryptos’ casually, essentially leaning on his smaller frame while she moved her hand to fiddle with his protruding top part. Keyhole gave her an amused look, enjoying how nervous the silver shape became.
“Oh, I plan on continuing.” Bill spoke gleefully and crinkled his eye. “Maybe we’ll invite ya, babe.” Depending on if he felt like sharing later of course.
What a tease! She licked her lips in excitement. “I don’t think we’ll have any trouble going from where we left off, hm, handsome?”
“We’ll see.” Bill interjected before Stanford could get anything out. Not that it would’ve been very coherent judging by his face and emotional state. Better to just answer for him! “Everyone done?” He threw a glance over at the ox-like demon smashing the meat against the ground and sighed inwardly. He was still at it? “Pacy, hey man, you’re gonna ruin that if you keep treating it like a toy-hammer! 8-Ball help him out, would ya pal?” The demigod looked at the half torn and scorched body of the woman he and his pet was going to share and tapped the area beneath his eye thoughtfully. “Ey, Sixer, we should save this before Keyhole takes it all, know what I mean? Anyone got a ‘doggy bag’ box?”
“I am a demon of my word. I took the legs I was offered, the rest is yours.” The cyan monster huffed and crossed his arms.
“Good. I’d have to rip your dimension-hole open and get it all back otherwise~” Bill spoke in a delighted manner. “I’ll just stow this away for now, we’ll have it later!” He swooped down to grab the human mess, stashing it away in a pocket-dimension behind his bow tie neatly. “Right, everyone wanna go back or?”
“I heard rumors from an eye-bat when I ate that sign that there’s a kid, girl, and stupid punk human running around in town. Maybe we can eat them before they’re caught?” Teeth yelled, in the midst of cleaning his teeth with a branch.
A kid and a girl? Dipper and Mabel!? N-No… It would be two kids then. Stanford almost had a heart attack right there at the thought of watching his great niece and nephew having to go through the same treatment these poor people did! No… NO! He wouldn’t be able to watch it, he’d―!
“A kid and a girl?” Bill sounded perplexed at that and closed his eye momentarily. “Oh. Pine tree and Red.” The kid was still alive? Maybe he should deal with him before he actually did something…or he could let star boy do it and spend more time with his pet? WELL that settled it! “Let’s leave ‘em for Gideon and his gang. You saw the sapling; the boy is like a mozzarella stick without the mozzarella!” In other words, EW.
“I like mozzarella sticks!”
“Well, if he proves to be more annoying than a fly, I know who to give him to.” Bill waved his hand in nonchalance.
While he wanted to protest further any harm coming to his family, Ford felt like he was already on pretty thin ice. He'd tried to run away and Bill knew it; most likely any plans for further sabotage needed to be put off for a while, lest he become too suspicious. Besides. Maybe Bill wouldn't do anything at all if he forgot about Dipper and Mabel... the demigod did have an odd amount of blindspots. Perhaps the twins were just too insignificant compared to his plans for... for whatever he was going to do next. They were resourceful, to have already dealt with so much of Gravity Falls weirdness at their age... he was certain that they could survive until Ford found a way to fix things.
Getting the rest of the demons to fall in line seemed to be the challenging part, as Pacifier was wrestling 8-ball over the beaten remains of his plaything. Bill kept shouting encouragement and joking with them, swept up in his own fun until Ford floated up beside him. It pleased him immensely that his pet was keeping to his side now, no matter how hilarious his attempt at ‘escape’ had been, THIS was where he truly belonged. Not to mention there was a certain aesthetic appeal to having the man on his arm, gilded yellow and black. Stanford was extremely cute when he was flustered, ears and nose blushed bright until he's trying to hide it in the collar of his sweater. "Aw, don't worry IQ, I'll get back to you soon~" He fluttered his eyelashes at Ford and blips out of the area to find a sweet ride, since he felt like roaring the exhaust really loud down the empty road.
Stanford hovered awkwardly without Bill, unsure if he should be doing something. He was very frustrated in all sorts of manners and still shocked from the carnage he experienced and... participated in; he could feel his sins crawling up his back. Flexing his hands he realized that there was still ash and dried blood caught under his fingernails and he obsessively began to clean them. He... he just had to compartmentalize. Later he'd deal with the reality of this, but for now he had to take a deep breath and wait. Keyhole walked up next to him and patted at Ford's side until he got the human's attention. Though numb, he turned and looked down at the demon, brow arched in silent question.
"Just thought you did pretty great out there today. Glad you decided to join up with us!" Stanford gave him a forced smile, but apparently that wasn't the end of the thought. "Y'know, I ain't never seen him like that with anyone else. Bill, I mean, obviously. He can be smooth-talking and all, don't think that isn't why most of us are here, but... I dunno, the thing you two have is different." Leaning forward close he whispered with a smile, "You're his favorite." Stanford blinked as he took it in, hating the weird little stutter his heart made. Favorite. Special. That was how he got into this mess in the first place…
Bill of course returned in style, drifting an 18-wheeler in with a blare of the horn. It was decked out in flames and skulls and gold. "Get in losers, we're going joyriding!" He called with another blast of the horn. Ford flinched at the sound but made his way quickly enough to the vehicle, curious as to how all of them were even going to fit inside. The inside appeared to be much larger though, so thankfully he wasn't going to be crushed between anyone. Actually... maybe if he just― "Hey Sixer why don't you sit with me?" Bill teases with another flutter of his eyelashes, reeling him in with a hand. Stanford doesn't even protest, just slotting himself easily right in Cipher's 'lap', shifting around to get comfortable until he feels a hand squeeze over his crotch again. "Relax babe, I won't leave ya hangin', even if you're cute with that automatic response and all~"
Stanford opens his mouth to respond when Bill hits the loud horn again before peeling out, the monster crew yelling and sticking their heads out the windows. It was... exhilarating, yeah, Bill drove like a maniac. Probably on purpose just to get his favorite meatsack clinging to him, though, like he thought that Cipher was actually going to crash or something.
He didn’t seem to be too far off the track about that though…
“Boss! Can’t we stop and trash something before we go back?” Hectorgon suggested, gaining enthusiastic support from Teeth.
“Yeah! There’s probably some part of this place that’s not completely chewed up!”
Bill glanced out as they rolled into the demolished town. “Hm, I dunno guys. Seems like it's pretty empty…HAH! I’m kidding, let’s mess this dump up!” He cackled and the tires of the vehicle screeched when he suddenly swerved harshly and ran straight through a wooden fence to reach another area of the town.
If Cipher hadn’t held onto him so well, Stanford would have careened into the window by this point! “J-Just take the road!” He yelled when the golden triangle sent the large-wheeled car through a broken shop window, knocking shelves with various goods over. G-God, why couldn’t he drive like a normal being!? The man braced himself when they hit the wall on the other side and shot completely through. The building they left in their wake collapsed the moment the vehicle roared on down the road.
“Why so tense, Sixer? Lemme show you how to park in Weirdmageddon STYLE!”
The manic laughter was the only warning the scientist got before he noticed where the car was heading. Was he going to―?
Too late. Bill pressed the gas pedal until it broke and then spun the wheel around madly. The car slid completely out of control straight towards the Gravity Falls Museum of History, bouncing up the stairs and smashing through the closed doors. The vehicle kept rolling inside where it crashed promptly upon meeting the next wall; in between two old statues that started to wobble unbalanced when the fiery wreckage made a dent in the tough material and landed on all wheels.
“Like a glove.” Bill said smugly while the rest of the monstrous gang climbed out of the ruined car, hooting and eager for more mayhem.
“You are going to be the death of me, one of these days.” Stanford stated, his heart still feeling as if it were making an escape attempt through his throat. He idly noticed the large crack on the wall, growing towards the ceiling of the chamber dangerously.
“Nah,” Bill pulled him flush against his front, a hand resting against his lower back. “I’ve worked too hard to throw you away that easily.” His lashes fluttered against Stanford’s cheek until the man turned bright red.
“J-Just do me a favor and never try to park a car again…” More like, never DRIVE a car again. Ford received a laugh at that, Bill apparently finding his near-death experience amusing. He was scooped up into the demigod’s arms and brought out of the trashed vehicle.
Hectorgon floated up to one of the stone statues, inspecting the peaceful angel it depicted. “Nah.” He grinned and pointed at it, a bright purplish glowing beam enveloping the structure for a moment before it came to life with a screech, unfurling its sharp wings and busted out of a window after circling the room. The screams still echoed inside the museum eerily after its departure. “There, much better.”
“Whoa, a banshee spirit, really?” Kryptos stared after the creature, rubbing underneath his eye. “Wouldn’t a gargoyle be better? Since they’re statues already and all.”
The red hexagon just gave him a pointed ‘look.’ Keyhole sighed, rubbing the bridge of his nose. “Have ya forgotten that gargoyles are PROTECTORS of the building they’re originate from?”
“Not only that,” Stanford added, “they ward against all sorts of supernatural creatures, including demons...”
“Oh! Right, haha, so it would attack us…”
Bill was actually tempted to turn the other statue into a gargoyle and blip everyone but Kryptos out of the museum, bar it up and leave him with it inside. But his patience was still fortunately a saint, and so he simply shooed at everyone to get moving. Besides, he found another way to express his annoyance with the other geometric shape. He passed Stanford to Xanthar’s palm with a quick pat on the butt before turning to deal with Kryptos. The square hadn’t noticed the attention, but the rest of the squad was carefully moving away from him, not wanting to get hit in the crossfire. Bill slung an arm over the shape’s body and pulled him close.
“Hey, Kry, I know we don’t always see eye to eye but I think ya did have a point there…” The forced cheer in the demigod’s voice tipped the other shape off, but that arm wasn’t letting him go anywhere.
“Y-Yeah boss?” He answered nervously.
“Yeah~ About THREE POINTS!” With a turn, Cipher lifted Kryptos over his head and threw him hard at a nearby display, which just so happened to be about Gravity Falls lake fishing and water industry. The others cheered as he got partially caught in a net. “Geeeeeeeeet dunked on!” He crowed, snapping his fingers and letting a summoned stream of water pour into the old creaking water wheel display and ultimately fall heavily over the silvery square and spilling out over the floor.
“DUNKED ON!” The rest (save for Ford) echoed and laughed loudly before dispersing to find more interesting things to tinker and mess with. Bill cackled while he floated off towards the exit, in a much better mood than before. Ford, however, stayed behind, having asked Xanthar to put him down.
He sighed loudly and made his way over to the fishing nets, shaking his head at how tangled up Kryptos had become in the few seconds he was caught. “Hold still.” He muttered before grabbing the wet webbing. It was surprisingly easy to set it aflame with a touch despite its soaked state, the cheap rope burning away with a golden tint until he could free him. It was surprisingly easy to put it out as well, perhaps the water helped with that...
“Thanks…” The shape said in a small voice, looking at the old man oddly before dodging his gaze. Before Ford could say anything further, the smaller creature floated off. He’d noticed before that the others sort of picked on him. Bottom of the group’s social hierarchy or something. But as awkward and weak as he seemed, he wouldn’t be friends with Bill Cipher unless he had SOME sort of.... power or relationship or… Something. There had to be a reason.
“HEY SIXER! Get over here! You’ll love this!” He’d have to figure it out later apparently, since he’d been ‘summoned’. With a groan he went to rejoin the group outside.
Liar and you burn me worse than fire
It happens every time
We burn, burn, burn
[swift] also if you are holding out for that 'eventual smut' tag, that's the NEXT chapter. B)
[Isa] Ah, I still remember when Swift saw my rp reply and it had Bill eating the baby... GOOD STUFF~
[Swift] I remember being like 'i dont wanna go too far with the gore' and THEN ISA TURNED IT UP TO 11
Chapter 5: My Heart wants me Dead
The conclusion of an eventful day. Several minor characters spotted, and Bill finally 'gets back' to Stanford.
[swift] Sorry this took SO LONG. The finale happened and I still don't have computer access so I have to try editting on my phone.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
You and I could try to stop
Oh, boy ‘till you drop
If we get together now
We’ll burn this place down
Once Stanford walked close enough to the squad he noticed to his growing horror that 8-Ball was holding a struggling person he’d apparently caught around the corner.
No… No more blood and viscera! Ford was about to move back into the Museum when Keyhole grabbed his hand and showed him the multitude of dusty colourful party balloons he held in his other hand. (How was he not floating off the ground by now? The cyan demon was actually really light in weight!)
“Hey, Sixer! What do ya think will happen if we tie all these to that human?”
“Depends on what exactly the balloons contain I suppose.”
“How’s about hydrogen~”
The old man raised his brows and swallowed inwardly. “Uh…Hypothetically she’ll rise into the air. But it all depends on the amount of hydrogen and.. amount of balloons.” Not to mention it was an extremely flammable gas…
Keyhole grinned, eyes gleaming. “So, we got these, how much hydrogen would we need?”
Stanford wasn’t sure if he wanted to know to be honest; it seemed like such an infeasible task! But he reached for a smaller notebook inside of his coat slowly. “It would take some time to calculate…” Maybe that time would make them grow bored of this and...let the lady go? (Oh, who was he kidding, he was only delaying the inevitable…)
“Nah, don’t worry IQ, I got it!” Bill rubbed his hands together and gestured for the balloons. “Gimmie, I’ll make it work with a special recipe of my own.” He passed them out to Pyronica and Paci-Fire who excitedly began attaching the balloons to the protesting human’s limbs.
“T-This is REALLY not necessary, let me go! I am a news reporter who―!”
“Ah, you’re that chick!” Bill snickered, while mockingly contemplating something, squinting his eye mildly. “Let’s see…Your name was Sandra Bullock or something, right?”
“Shandra Jimenez…!” She tried to stop the large pink demoness from tying balloons around her middle.
“Oooh right, the ‘REAL’ news reporter! Sandra Bullock is a real human celebrity and all.” The demigod joked, everyone laughing at his jab. (Except for Stanford who was wondering who the heck Sandra Bullock was…) “Well guess what, Jiminy, now you can do REAL reports from space!”
He ignored her growing horror and ‘interpreted’ it as joy. “Yeah! Isn’t it exciting!? Sure the balloons miiight explode after a certain altitude, but hey, only 76% chance of happening!” He tapped the secured balloons slowly with his index-finger, filling them with his own chaotic gas concoction.
Shandra flailed and yelled once she started to lift upwards, the brunette stared at the large amused triangle when he kept her in place with his thumb and index finger pinching her foot. “This is INSANE! W-Why would you DO something like this!? It makes no sense!”
“What FUN is there in making sense?” Bill glanced at his non-existent nailbeds for a second before letting go. “Whoops!~ Have fun reporting from space, I recommend ya check out the moon, it’s not what ya dirt-apes think it is!” He cackled at her screaming and useless kicking about.
“Except you’re gonna have to do it with your corpse..?” Kryptos blinked at the rising human while everyone else was laughing and moving about.
Keyhole rolled his eyes. “That’s the joke, Kry.” He muttered before the triangle caught onto what the square had said. A strong gust of wind suddenly picked up around them and pushed the yelling female reporter to the treeline. There was a distant rustling as she became caught in a tall pine, legs sticking out from the branches.
The monster gang didn’t pay much attention to the woman now that she had floated away, only Paci-Fire snickered at her clear struggling distress. “Boom.” He murmured to Keys and then glanced at the female stuck high up in the tree not too far away. The smaller cyan demon followed his gaze and covered his mouth in amusement, laughing in a muffled way. “Boom indeed! If I didn’t wanna ruin that building right now, I’d watch her crawl around and then get half blown to bits!” When Bill said his concoction was chaotic, he meant it. That stuff was super destructive!
Stanford was not certain of what insanity he’d just witnessed, but… It was milder than the horror earlier at least… He had to try and see it like that. He bit his lower lip gently and picked out his notebook anew, idly sketching whatever his mind could conjure at the moment. Unfortunately it kept replaying every awful thing he’d seen today, so his humanoid sketch became something a lot more horrific quicker than he realized. He needed a distraction… Could they go back to the weird pyramid castle now? He was getting very concerned about the gang bumping into his family somewhere at this point… He had to make sure that did NOT happen! He became so absorbed into his task that he barely noticed when Bill picked him up in his arms.
“That’s the ticket buddy!” The demigod crowed once 8-Ball jumped on a small human car and then kicked it into a store window. “Whadd’ya wanna do Fordsy? Destroy houses? Barbeque wildlife? Change the water in the lake into ambrosia? Or you feelin’ like continuing from where we left off earlier, hm?”
The mortal grew red-faced at the last words and slammed his notebook shut, clearing his throat in embarrassment. “N-No, not here!” Minor sweet public displays of affection was something he thought nice in a more guilty pleasure way, it wasn’t proper after all. But anything major and he instantly felt uncomfortable. Plus the thought of being caught doing something sexual in public… It made his ears red! Oh, the humiliation! Perhaps once upon a time he’d been slightly more willing to something like that coming from Bill, but now? NO. “I-I’d rather just…Keep sketching for now.” Stanford murmured, clenching his hand around his notebook. His face was still so warm, god, please stop, he begged internally! That faint hint of sexual frustration was actually there, but it was controllable so to say. It wasn’t a problem… Thank his age for that.
“Heheh, you still shy about doin’ stuff in public, huh?” Bill of course knew all about that. It didn’t mean he wasn’t gonna try and coax it out of the man though! It would be absolutely delicious when he managed to tear down his morals. Maybe he’d even make a show in front of the other Pines? Just to see them squirm and writhe! Delicious!
Hm, sketching? That gave the golden geometry a great idea! “That’s GENIUS! This place lacks my equilateral beauty in SOOO many places. Let’s fix that, shall we?” If he had his visible mouth, it would have been grinning. “HEY GUYS! Let’s make some ART around this joint!”
“Hm, with what exactly?” Amorphous Shape blinked, gesturing with his tendrils towards Keyhole briefly who was busy jumping on a ruined shop building together with Teeth to bring it down completely. “Keys' acid isn’t very useful for that.”
“Buddy, of course we’re not gonna use that tacky stuff!” Bill cackled, putting Stanford down on the ground to rub his inky hands together. “Nah, I have a much better paint in mind…”
The unravelled rubix cube tilted to the side before making a humming noise.
“Think about it, what’s red, hot and―”
“Blood.” Stanford replied with a crease of his eyebrows. He could still smell the gore on his hands. The stench of death was all around. Maybe the sketching was a horrid idea?
“As always, I can count on my little genius to get it.”
Morpho chuckled at that, rolling his eyes when the demigod patted the mortal’s curls. Looks like Pacy would be winning that bet about their boss having a thing for the six-fingered man at this rate. Not that it was unexpected, Bill was clearly in a better mood with the mortal around than when he wasn’t. “Anyway, got some spare human blood or should we dig around for some fresh cadavers to take it from?”
“There’s plenty of useful corpses around, check the collapsed buildings.” Bill paused to watch Keyhole and Teeth bring down the rugged concrete, dust whirling up around and debris flying into Xanthar who stood his ground. He shot the pair two enthusiastic thumbs up before turning back to the smaller demon. “If ya find fresh blood though, feel free to take it. It is the most useful kind!”
“Got it.” Amorphous Shape made a strange salute and darted off to tell Pyronica and Kryptos, the latter of which was climbing into a grocery store through the busted window Py had smashed with her sharp heels.
Cipher glanced down at Stanford and made a short beckoning gesture, telling him to get off from the ground. “Let’s look for some good paint ourselves, shall we Fordsy!”
“Well, there’s an artist's supplies store right there…” The man pointed towards a little shop sandwiched in between two larger clothing stores. “I’m sure we could find some good acrylics or spraypa― AH!” He yelped and leapt into the air almost by default when the store was hit by a firestorm, engulfing it completely!
“Whoops! I guess that settles it.” Bill blew some smoke off his index finger and grabbed the mortal’s arm before pulling him along. “Human contemporary art is dead, time for the Billpressionism to rise!”
Stanford couldn’t do anything but place his palm over his face, exasperated by the demon in general.
It didn’t take long for Bill to find a few good corpses and even less time to drain them of their blood. Ford couldn’t help but watch the process with a morbid fascination. How did he drain something just by touching it; did he use his energy to suck it out like a mosquito? Did his claws act like tiny syringes?
“Check this out!” The triangle floated towards the huge sign containing a picture of the child ‘psychic’ Gideon Gleeful. He placed his finger to the sign and messily drew a red triangle over the platina blonde's face. He added an eye, his signature top hat, bowtie and his limbs before withdrawing and cackling in amusement. “WE CHARGE JUST A WIDDLE EXTRA!” He erupted in a fit of laughter, holding his midsection, bricks trembling.
“I’m not sure I get the joke here.” Stanford floated kind of awkwardly at the side, staring at the masterpiece his former muse just made.
“‘Tis okay Fordsy, I mean, you should know I charge just a WIDDLE EXTRA!”
The old man wanted to sigh because he didn’t understand what was so funny about the phrase. Watching the demigod wipe away ‘tears’ made out of melted gold did not elaborate on things either. Ford glanced at the sizzling spots where they landed and frowned. Well, that was going to make a mark…
“Can I have the password for the laptop and also I am so tired and eating my human shirt!”
Stanford snapped his head up at Bill when he heard him imitate his nephew’s voice.
“No, but I can SMASH it for you IN YOU!”
The new bouts of high-pitched laughter made the mortal’s head ache. Why did he imitate Dipper…? What password? Laptop… Wait, was he talking about McGucket’s laptop? Was that how he tricked Dipper earlier this summer? “What happened between you and my nephew?”
The triangle fanned himself, thoroughly entertained. “Oh man, it was really fun! Pine tree was like, pathetically desperate to crack open that heap of junk Fiddlesticks made, y’know the thing containing information about the portal? Yeah. I couldn’t really have that happening, it would ruin your return if he caught onto your drama queen warnings and shut down the portal yanno? SO I kept harassing him for a deal and the sucker eventually took the bait. Thing is I never promised him that password I just said I’d give him a HINT,” he paused to snicker. “And I did, I took his weak meatsack, smashed the laptop, which led him to destroying that annoying cult ol’ Banjo made and stuff. Kid really played straight into my hands. I didn’t get to destroy your little third diary, but hey, it worked out anyway; you came back, the rift festered, it cracked and I won!”
Stanford swallowed, feeling anger bubble up inside of him. Cipher didn’t just trick his nephew, he had traumatized him for life. He still recalled those terrified brown eyes looking at him during that day in his study. The time he tested his nephew’s courage to prepare him for facing Bill…
“P-Pine tree? Is that what you were going to call me!?”
Now once he realized how brutally Cipher had violated the child, he kind of regretted doing what he did. He didn’t know what Bill had done to his niblings, but he had never expected it to be this severe! It made him angry and he had to control himself lest he send his fist into the geometry’s single eye! Focus… Focus! Breathe. Stanford concentrated on his breathing, his flight slowly descending.
Of course it didn’t go unnoticed by the demigod, who pulled him back up, not allowing him to ground himself. “Whoa, careful there pal! There’s only so much damage I can heal on a mortal y’know.” He placed his hand on his side in a chastising way while his pupil wandered to the side of the used car lot where 8-Ball was running and hopping over the enclosure with ease. “Hey bud, you getting any masterpieces done of me all over town ey?” He made friendly finger guns at the troll-like monster.
“You betcha boss! Kryptos is even trying to paint the goat together with Xanthar!” He crowed. “It’s a real show!”
“Wow, really? Are ya telling me Kry is growing out of his lame phase!?” Bill’s eye widened enormously at that. Was it possible for the square to stop being such a square!?
“Nah, I wouldn’t say we’re that lucky yet, if ever. Xanthar pulled him along when chasing the goat.” 8-Ball shook his head but then smiled. “But he’s trying. Points for that, yeah?” The monster glanced at the ruckus going on across the town, following the brown upset goat with his rolling glowing orbs.
“Eeeh, I guess.”
Stanford frowned, but decided to finally ask about the matter now. “Why are you all so hard on him? Kryptos I mean?” He needed a distraction from his anger, and maybe he’d manage to find out something useful from this.
The triangle gave him a look. “Because he’s lame, duh.”
“Actually, there’s kinda a story to it―” 8-Ball closed his mouth when Bill stretched his arm in his direction, palm up; a clear sign to shut up.
“Because he’s lame.” Bill repeated, giving the green creature a stern look. “You might've been with me a long time, Eight, but don’t go thinking you can babble about things without consequences, capiche?”
“Of course boss.”
“Good, now check out this poster I improved tenfold!” Bill’s mood took a drastic turn from serious to glee and he pointed proudly at the sign he had vandalised, floating down to be closer to the demon.
“Whoa, that’s so rad!”
“I know, right!?”
The old man stared at the way the two acted, how Bill slung a friendly arm around 8-Ball and laughed with him. Was possibly 8-Ball the oldest of the group aside from Bill…? Wait, if Bill didn’t want him to talk about some things…did that mean 8-Ball knew information that Bill deemed important? OH! Stanford mentally filed that away. That could be very useful, maybe he could coax something out of the shackled monster someday? Ah, finally this mission and horror show might start to pay off!
He smiled inwardly and flew closer to the two, but he froze when he noticed someone moving in the background. Someone was walking into the car lot! Ford was about to think of a way to trick them back out when he noticed they did not seem horrified by Bill and 8-Ball. More like… Surprised? Also, were they a CHILD? Flanked by beefy biker men?
Cipher turned around to regard the one who addressed him and cackled at the small child and his criminal entourage. “Well well well, if it isn’t widdle Giddy and his band of misfits, how’s it goin’ kiddo?”
‘Giddy’ cleared his throat and pursued his lips, speaking with a heavy southern accent. “My name is GIDEON.” He paused to look at the green troll and then at the floating huge man, blue eyes widening… “Wait… Stanford Pines!?”
“Ah―” He cleared his throat, running through every interaction he’d had lately. “I’m sorry, have we met?”
“Oh man! Gids, you’re gonna love this one, how’s about the biggest plot twist of the summer? The con-man you knew as Stanford Pines was a fraud! Check it out!” Bill grabbed the man’s hand and splayed it out to reveal the most obvious difference between him and Stan. Bill narrowed his eye at Gideon before explaining in a stage-whisper. “Secret twin!” Stanford yanked his hand back, rubbing self-consciously at the extra digit while Bill yapped on. “This is original flavor Stanford! He slices, he dices, he builds interdimensional gateways! Often imitated but never replicated. Kinda. Do twins count as replication?”
“Heaven’s alive, six fingers… the symbol on the Journal― that means…” Gideon muttered under his breath until realization hit him; baby blue eyes growing wide as saucers. “YOU’RE THE AUTHOR!? Ahh, never would’a imagined that oafish old man had such a brilliant mind in the family. It’s unbelievable!” He lowered his voice into a shocked whisper. “Amazing…”
“Why were two of my journals found by mere children. Was this your doing, Cipher?” Stanford ignored the star-struck expression below him and instead jabbed a finger to Bill’s bowtie. He didn’t seem bothered by the accusation though, instead just shrugging casually.
“Nope! Just the way the cards fell, Lady Luck is pretty fickle. We dated once.” Bill peeked open his eye just a sliver which gave Ford pause.
“...was that a joke?”
“Oooh, you are a genius after all!” Bill squashed Stanford’s cheeks between his hands, teasing him mercilessly. He couldn’t help but chuckle when the man grew flustered and tried to push him away. Aww, wasn’t it the cutest, how he pretended he disliked the attention?
“But, how’d he keep ya hidden away all this time?” Gideon spoke up and reminded Bill that he was even there. Whoops! Got a bit distracted playing with Fordsy again, almost forgot they had business to talk about. But first…
“That’s a great question, Star-child! Didn’t ya once think bringing all the Journals together would, I dunno, give you some sort of unstoppable power or something? Well, ho-ho! Not too far off the mark there, kiddo! Get this, what it really was―”
“Bill, honestly, is this the place to drag all that up?”
That made him stop. Slowly, he turned to Stanford and regarded him. His color shifted into orange and he crossed his arms in childish displeasure. (8-Ball gasped lightly, staring at the mortal in surprise.)
“Yeesh! Can’t a guy explain his evil plan without gettin’ interrupted? Didn’t even get to the good bits where I tricked ya, Sixer!”
“Yes, I know you are exceptionally proud of what you did to me,” he had to force himself to not let anger seep out through his voice, it would do no good to start arguing and fighting here with the child and 8-Ball present! “But maybe it could wait for another time…” Stanford’s mind was in a brief buzz of conflict before he leaned toward Bill. “Please? I would really like to get back h-… to the pyramid. Would you do it as a favor?”
Oh! Bill felt the anger melt right off him at that, shifting back into golden yellow. He saw brief, muddy flashes of possible outcomes and he had to say, he was interested! Surely the conversation at hand could be postponed...
Bill blinked and glanced back down. Oh, right, the kid. With a final pat on Stanford’s cheek he floated lower to the ground.
“Well, no rest for the wicked I tell ya! We’ll have to catch up later Giddy, trust me, it’s worth the wait. Oh, and ya still got that thing I gave you right?” Gideon paused before reaching into his little suit, displaying the large gold key he’d been tasked to keep safe. “Great! Knew I could count on you. Now, Red and Pine tree have been sneaking around, so if you see those crazy kids do me a favor and nab ‘em! Don’t want them to get any ideas y’know?” He blinked his eye forcefully. There was a pause. “I’m winking, but I only have one eye sooo, all right it was nice chitchattin’ with ya, but we gotta jet back to HQ! Don’t worry about those patches of gold, that’s my doing!” Bill glanced over at the intact vehicles, hooting in encouragement when he saw that 8-Ball had been painting on them haphazardly. He cackled and reached to grasp Stanford’s arm.
“AH, our cars!” Gideon exclaimed, his right hand man Ghosteyes creasing his eyebrows angrily at the gross vandalism. “Is that BLOOD!?”
“Sure is! See, human bodies are useful for more than just stuffing in Teeth’s mouth or throwing around down stairs!”
8-Ball crowed at that, drawing a messy triangle at the door of the car before tossing down the corpse he’d been carrying on his back, eyes rolling in entertainment once the fat child expressed horror at the mangled skinsack. “Between us, should Teethsy really be eatin’ any more? Can’t be good for his gums, the plaque smells awful.”
“HEY, I HEARD THAT!”
The Gleeful child jumped in shock once he laid his eyes on the walking maw, his hands wandering to where his heart rested. “Oh my god…!”
Teeth regarded the platina blond for a moment before turning to Bill. “Can I eat him?”
Ignoring Gideon’s angry huffs and protests along with the protective criminal group, Bill laughed and then shook his body in a negative. “Nope, he’s working for me, pal.”
“Aw.” The monster accepted that and then growled at 8-Ball who chuckled sheepishly.
“Gotta admit, you’d have hair stuck in your teeth for days.”
“LIKE YOU’VE EVER FLOSSED!”
Stanford only sighed as he watched the pink creature run at the larger troll-like one, intending to fight him. “Really?” He drawled once Bill gathered him in his arms anew and started to cheer on the brawl enthusiastically. “Is this necessary? Is this the right place to start fighting? There are children present!” The man pursued his lips angrily when the triangle cackled loudly as Teeth grabbed onto 8-Ball’s arm. “Hello? Could we go back now!” He drummed his hands against the inky black surface that was Bill’s arms.
“A sec, babe, I just gotta see this!” The demigod cooed, petting his head gingerly, stroking the greying locks. “Who ya think will win?”
“Frankly I do not care! This is silly and at this rate 8-Ball and Teeth will both get hurt.”
“Yeah, that’s kinda the point of fighting, yanno? Relax, they’re immortal and all that jazz.”
“Put me down! I will stop this madness myself if you won’t! Immortal or not, you don’t encourage your friends to squabble.”
“Interesting philosophy…” Bill yawned to signal how interested he truly was.
“Put me down!”
“...Put me down PLEASE?”
That seemed to satisfy the narcissistic geometry and he allowed the mortal to float down to the ground. He was curious about what his pet was going to do.
Stanford marched up to the two fighting monsters, ducking to avoid a swinging arm and firmly grasped Teeth underneath his small arms, lifting him and pulling him away from the green demon who mostly regarded his move with confusion.
“H-Hey! Whadd’ya doing, Sixer? LEMME AT HIM!”
8-Ball’s eyes rolled, shifting into a yellow hue as he scratched his head.
“That’s enough, both of you! This is NO place to start fighting!”
“HE STARTED IT!”
“Well, I guess I did.”
“I don’t care who started it! Stop maiming each other for ridiculous reasons! If you really MUST fight, then at least wait until we’re home!”
Teeth kicked with his small legs and stuck out his tongue, blowing a loud and wet raspberry. “BOO! Boss, do something! Control your mortal!”
Bill was however a little busy, staring at the man with a wide crinkled eye. He said home… He said HOME! He clasped his hands together, ignoring Teeth’s protests and demands. “Mmm, maybe you should listen to Fordsy…” He murmured, a bit unfocused, still looking at Stanford.
8-Ball didn’t seem to mind though. He shrugged and then glanced at the horrified humans still present. “Ah, this is normal. Don’t worry!” Neither Gideon or his prison gang seemed particularly worried, but he figured he could explain the situation a little. They were on their side after all! “Teeth gets cranky when he’s upset.”
“SHUT UP YA DINGUS!”
“As you can see.”
Gideon had no idea what to make of this peculiar scenario, but he couldn’t help thinking about how calm and amazing the author of the journals was! He just stopped two… monsters from fighting, and judging by how Cipher acted, even the triangle was a bit floored by it. That was rather interesting all by itself. “Um, don’t worry about the key, and…” The child turned to regard the loud pink walking mouth spitting all sorts of vulgarity. “I hope whatever trouble there was… gets sorted?” Sure, he was used to seeing prison brawls, but this was… very different! The green troll had almost gotten his arm bit off for christ’s sake! He cleared his throat and signalled for his team to follow him into the shop. “Oh, and it was nice meetin’ ya Stanford!” Gideon felt it really strange to use his arch-nemesis name for his idol, but it would probably be rude to just call him the author, right? “Boy, I’ve gotta lot of things I’d like ta ask you about the journal, the second one―”
“Yeah yeah, tone down the fanboy kiddo, he’s already heard all of this from Pine tree. Followed him around like a lost duckling for weeks.”
“Um, that journal isn’t the easiest for me to discuss to be quite honest. Bad memories.” He spared a glance to Bill before continuing. “It was nice to meet you as well?” It felt so odd to be revered by children! At least Dipper was his nephew, but this child was a complete stranger who had found his book, the one containing most of the dark and harmful spells and knowledge Bill had once given him…
“Ahh, no, no I understand.” The platina blond replied, still a bit starstruck by the fact that he was talking to the author of the journals; his idol.
“BlahblahBLAH, let’s go already! IQ, put down Teeth, he’s starting to grind ‘em and that’s no good.”
Stanford obliged and let the pink demon hop away, getting a huff in response. “Be nice you two.” He leapt into the air and didn’t hear the sentence the monster muttered mockingly.
8-Ball covered his mouth to not burst out laughing. “Good one.” He whispered and gave Teeth a friendly high-five. He paused before adding under his breath, “Would that make boss the dad?” Which made the other giggle incessantly, trying to not be too loud about it. “Eheheh, maybe we should go and get the others? So Morpho doesn’t get himself stuck again or Kryptos gets eaten by that goat?”
“Honestly he can get eaten for all I care.” Teeth snickered, but rubbed over his frontal teeth. “Morpho on the other hand… He’ll never let us live it down.” The maw was in a much better mood now and followed the green troll that leapt over the enclosure again to get back to the town.
“Time for us to leave too Fordsy, they’ll get the rest of the gang~” Bill swooped to hold the man in his arms again and snapped his fingers, teleporting the two into the twisting dark interior of the Fearamid. “While our buds take their sweet time returning, you and I can,” he slipped a hand underneath Stanford’s sweater, ghosting over his skin. “Continue from where we left off, hm?”
For all that Bill tried to emphasize Stanford being ‘part of the group’ there still were key differences. Partly their lack of modesty but mainly the crew’s never-ending energy. The man felt tired from everything that happened today; physically and mentally, but Bill’s friends just kept going. What time was it even anymore? Did time exist still? Or had it burned up with the rest of normalcy the moment Bill tore through the dimensions.
Stanford winced and looked down at his hand, the weight of his own actions still resting heavily on his heart. He tried taking deep breaths to relax, which was considerably more difficult with Bill touching him. Still, he would rather think about that than what he’d done today. If he got worked up, mentally looping around the horrible events, he’d break down. He couldn’t do that… he couldn’t, something, something else… anything else…
Even this and, oh god, he felt so weak, so human when Bill touched him. Something within him was still so enamoured with the demigod and it made the rest of him feel awful shame. It however, didn’t help his body from reacting to the warm caresses, it wanted this, and his mind was losing the battle as well…
“You’re his favorite.”
An idea that had been forming in his mind finally collected itself into a plan. He could do it, though the thought of an audience made him nervous.
“Ah… stop, they will see us like this.” Stanford swallowed and felt his cheeks grow warm. “It’s,” he paused to inhale sharply when Bill’s limb snaked down and into his tight pants. So tight… “It’s not very appropriate..?” The man tried, his voice steadily growing husky. He wanted this... God, why did he want this?
“Who cares! We make our own rules now, try to keep up. Kinda too bad though that the crew will take a while. Py really wanted to get her hands all over you.”
"That's another thing, Cipher." Ford furrowed his brow so seriously that Bill couldn’t help but move his hands back up to run his fingers through the man's grey hair. So cute when he was angry. "She is―” he paused, “well, It doesn't really matter what she's like, this isn't between me and her." Bill rolled his eye at the drama but blinked in surprise when a six-fingered hand rested against his side and pulled him closer. Oh, that wasn’t the end of that thought? "It's between you and me. JUST you." Oh ho! Now this was interesting! Stubborn Ford was great, of course, but a willing Stanford Pines was one thing he missed from all those years ago. Maybe soon enough he could convince the man to ditch that lame metal plate in his head, too, and truly let him back in.
"Sure thing Fordsy, knew you couldn't resist forever."
“Privacy first, Bill.” Stanford said firmly, having stopped the progress of two wandering hands. He might have made up his mind on allowing this to happen just this once, but he wouldn’t do it where any of the henchmaniacs could just wander in. “Just us, remember?”
“Yeah yeah, fine. You ain’t gonna mind so much the next time by the looks of things but we’ll do it your way.”
“The next―” He was cut off by the sudden disorientation of being teleported back into the familiar room. Before he could comment further he was shoved up against the dark wall, not even close to the floor either.
Bill cackled and pushed himself against Ford, hands wandering down and quickly shucking his turtleneck off. "Hmm, we really need to get these fixed, dont’cha think?" He asked with a twinkle in his eye, fingers tracing an image of himself inked onto Ford's body. It had been scratched out so he couldn't use it as a window anymore, but that wouldn't be so difficult to re-do, especially once he had unlimited access to Stanford's body and mind again. For now he'd have to wait. He switched his eye out for teeth so he could bite on the man's neck which gained a low groan from him.
Stanford hated how good it felt to let Bill do this again. Their relationship in the past had been different. Back then Bill was limited to the mindscape unless he possessed Ford's body, which led to some... interesting situations. The triangle loved to mess with Ford's dreams and had left him on edge and frustrated in the morning too often. It had started so innocuously that he hadn’t been entirely sure it was on purpose. After a while he had confronted the muse on the issue, telling him to at least finish what he started, and that was all the dare that Bill needed. He'd slipped right in beside Ford's mind and moved their hands lower, rubbing every sensitive spot he already learned the location of; and Bill had much more restraint than Stanford could put up with. He'd edged the man for an hour, almost getting close enough before backing off until he couldn't stand it anymore and―!
Bill snapped Stanford from the pleasant memory with a very real squeeze to his shaft, the inky hand already having slipped into his briefs. Mouth opened in a gasp he quickly found another set of lips met his own and he didn’t protest. He... he could let himself have this again, just once. It was Cipher's fault anyway for teasing him all day, he wasn't immune to the physical attention, he couldn’t be.
The triangle chuckled against his lips and licked his way into Ford's slack mouth again, thoroughly enjoying himself. He'd waited years to do this with a physical form, and the submission he got from his pet was all too sweet. He was going to take everything from him; his family, his morals, his humanity. There would to be nothing left of Stanford Pines but what Bill Cipher allowed there to be, and it would be glorious.
"Y'know, you were always my favorite human." Bill said without having to stop kissing him. He grinned when he drew another delicious sound from Ford by running his thumb against the soft head of his cock. Oh yes this was going to be FUN. As a master of the mind he never forgot anything, least of all the best spots on his favored meatbag. He knew just enough pressure to apply and where to turn the brilliant Stanford Pines into nothing more than a panting, drooling animal.
Ford squirmed at the odd friction of Bill’s hand. It kept catching before becoming silky smooth again and the contrast messed with his head and he couldn't breathe... Bill broke the kiss just in time, which left Stanford gulping for air as if he'd been drowning. Maybe he was. Cipher pulled his hand out of Ford's pants and he couldn’t help the desperate whine that worked from his throat. "Bill, please, no more teasing―!" His words were cut off when he was grabbed roughly and thrown down onto the bed. About to complain on being treated so violently, he glared up at Bill and stopped. His mouth went dry when he watched the way that black forked tongue snaked around Bill's fingers. With a blink the maw was gone, replaced by the demon's amused expression.
"Shh, you worry too much, that can't be good for your heart. Relax~" Moving his hand in a clear command Bill pushed Ford's pants off and briefs down his thighs. "I'll take good care of you." Spit-slicked fingers wrapped around his shaft and slowly stroked. He always took good care of his things.
Stanford inhaled sharply, gasping as the cool touch enveloped his shaft. T-There had to be something in that saliva...! It felt crazy... it prickled but not in a painful way, more like a pleasant tingle. Was that actually what sent shivers down his whole body? Ah, maybe something like that… It got increasingly difficult to focus on anything else but Bill’s gentle administrations. He couldn’t help moaning when the single-eyed triangle kept stroking his member in that familiar way… “Oh god...” He whispered. Memories sifted before his eyes when he closed them. It was almost like…back then. Bill had used Stanford’s own hands then, but… it had been much alike this time, aside from the strange wonderful saliva! What even was that substance...?
“Yes, Stanford?” Bill’s voice couldn’t hide his glee, pupil growing dilated at the sight before him. It was always so fulfilling to be called a god and considering he was one technically, in charge of this realm, it didn’t feel wrong to take that title from that phony man-upstairs concept humans kept believing in.
“Thirty years ago?”
“Isn’t it nice?”
“You’ve missed this, havent’cha Sixer?”
“Don’t lie to me. I can see right through you, remember?”
Stanford wet his lips at the commanding tone. Bill had always been there when it came to his emotions. When sudden feelings about his brother had impeded progress with the portal, his muse had known about it instantly and talked to him; time spent calming him down and making him focus on what was important. Stanford swallowed and kept his eyes shut as his face grew into a redder hue. “I have…” How could he not have missed this…? Bill had always been the only one he trusted to that degree, the only one he’d wanted to be with and have sex with, among other things. Their form of intimacy had transcended any normal human kind through their mind-sharing bond…it was impossible to not want this! Despite the way it hurt to fall back to square one all over again, it… it felt right, too. No matter how irrational he knew it to be. He'd probably regret it once his mind was clear again. He wasn’t entirely sure how he could think at all with the steady hand on his cock! Maybe it was all nonsense in the heat of the moment...
“Mm, I know.” Bill almost purred, keeping his tone a little quieter and less high-pitched than usual. “We’ve been apart for too long.” Thirty years was nothing to him, but he did feel very delighted and eager to have his favorite fleshsack back in his arms. “But not to worry, I don’t have any plans on letting us get separated again. Ever.” Just imagining the way his pet’s dark brown eyes used to look at him in that completely devoted and utterly starstruck way, oh, it made his energy leap around in excitement! Bill absolutely adored that look on him, the way he’d worshipped him and how he gave him anything he wanted. Ah yes, he’d have that look back eventually, only for him.
The demigod caressed the meaty human genital, feeling something sticky and disgusting against his fingertip. Ah, he was getting closer to release, huh? He trained his pupil on the moaning mess that was Stanford and chuckled. What a good look on him~ Bill created a new set of inky hands that ran up the man’s body, tracing the beautiful tattoos and scars. This one was his favorite. He’d carved it into his skin with a special knife before Stanford managed to put that blasted piece of metal inside of his skull. A little gift to remind him who he would always belong to, no matter how much he tried to run and hide. Bill’s fingers ghosted over the triangle brand, staring at the eye that was positioned right over the man’s heart. It was breathtakingly gorgeous! (Well, if he had any breath to begin with, that is.) His image was nothing short of perfection anyway. “I take good care of you, don’t I?”
The human arched his back at the increasing speed of the hand on his dick and groaned in pleasure. Stanford grasped the sheets tightly with his fists before shifting one hand to land on the smooth warm surface of the demigod. It felt so good! So sinfully good… Oh, he was sinning more than ever right now. His mission was lost in the back of his head and all he could think about was how wonderful it felt to receive this attention again. To be loved by his savior and destroyer… “Nghh…!” He moaned and opened his dilated and hazy eyes to gaze into the alluring depth above him. “Yes…” His breathing became thicker with every word he tried to produce, he wanted to say so many things, but right now he had no idea how to word them. It was just as well; even if he’d regret this later, he wouldn’t at least have babbled about like a sentimental idiot, right...?
“That’s right, good boy.” Bill flipped his eye back, removing his hat briefly to dip down and use his lips for touching the marred skin; licking and kissing it gingerly. An occasional nibble got him more of those sounds! “You taste so good, I could almost eat you up~” He teased and stroked the wet head of the length, eliciting more delicious moans. He moved his mouth higher and suckled onto the skin around his collarbones, feeling a strong desire to mark him flare up.
Momentarily he also felt a slight annoyance at knowing his pet’s family of trees were still out there and ol’ fez would likely eventually work tooth and nail to bring his brother back to their side. It was unacceptable, and Bill was already dedicating a part of his vast mind to plot something for that. Pine tree was too pre-occupied with searching for Shooting star and he was as much a threat as an ant. No, it was Stanley that could prove to be a nuisance judging by all the images flashing through him, possible futures. But he couldn’t make Sixer hurt him now; it was too early for that sort of thing. No, he had to be careful and meticulous if he wanted his prize. Hearing Stanford whimpering and leaning into his touch just convinced him more of how much he wanted it.
He’d have him by his side for eternity, like the man promised him all those years ago. His mouth changed back into the single eye and it crinkled slyly. Now he could make it happen and no matter who interfered, Bill Cipher always got what he wanted.
Stanford bucked his hips up into Bill's grasp automatically, feeling the threat of orgasm building in his gut. He couldn’t help each whine that escaped him when teeth grazed his skin, worrying bruises onto his body. The tingling of the demon's strange saliva wasn't helping at all, he just felt overwhelmed entirely and spread his thighs in a silent plea for more. His askew glasses fogged up and sweat bead down his forehead, every stroke over his shaft driving him mad and making him think of absolutely awful possibilities. What would it feel like to stick his cock into the demon's maw? Or ride him. Bill didn't appear to have genitalia that he knew of… Wow, it had been too long since he'd been touched by anyone else like this... or even since he'd touched himself like this, for that matter.
Now that his mind was going, he couldn't stop thinking about it. Fingers found his nipples and Ford remembered what it looked like, to watch from the mindscape while Bill was wearing his body. Maybe it was a little vain, to enjoy the sight of himself to consumed by arousal. But he remembered half-lidded yellow eyes and a sharp grin as Cipher toyed with his body back then.
“My name, Fordsy. Say it.”
“B-Bill…!” That was all it took to reach the edge. Ford came hard to the memory of the demigod possessing him.
Bill laughed when his pet thrusted up underneath him before going still, trembling though his orgasm. A thought flitted like a bright fish across Ford's brain briefly, wondering if perhaps he could still read his mind, and Bill couldn't help but crinkle his eye in amusement at those brown wide eyes. Oh, if only Ford knew how obvious he was being! He didn't even HAVE to read his mind. It was just an added bonus, like a little private joke he could be in on. Feeling the slick release between his fingers, the triangle held his hand in front of Stanford's face. "Gross! I can feel all your gamete dying." He pressed the messy digits to Ford's lips and was pleased when they parted for him.
Stanford tasted himself on Bill's hand and the realization of what he just did hit him like a freight train. Wow. The post-sex haze was a little bit ruined by how stupid he felt for letting the being touch him that way again. Make him feel this way. Groaning he pressed the heels of his hands against his eyes, glasses pushed up into his sweaty hair. He hated that it felt good. He hated how calm and satisfied he felt now, he hated how for a moment he hadn't hated Bill at all. Stomping all over that feeling, Ford steeled his mind and firmly reminded himself that he did, in fact, hate Bill Cipher. The demon might be as tricky as a spider but he would not be the fly stepping into his parlor again!
"Boy! Done already, that was quick, hahah! No stamina anymore I tell ya, don't worry, we'll work on that." Bill floated down to sit by Ford's head and played with his hair, feeding on the conflicted thoughts warring against each other in the man's mind. It was great!
"What about―" He stopped mid-question but the demon could feel what it would have been and oh, oh that's beautiful! Reciprocation? The little dirt ape was worried about him, Bill Cipher, being satisfied. Aww, he couldn’t resist scratching at the man's sideburns fondly at that.
"Oh, man Sixer you're a riot! You've got waaays to go before you'll be able to do that, don't worry your cute little self. Knew you cared~" He taunted, sweet as anti-freeze. Maybe in a hundred years, if he could successfully transition the man into something less mortal, then they could mingle in a way that Bill found intimate… "ANYWAY! That sure was a thing that happened. You're so precious Fordsy, but I gotta get back to the squad, I’m sure they all arrived by now can't leave ‘em waiting for too long lest they start trying to tear each other apart. Monsters! Am I right?” The demigod laughed at that, obnoxiously loud. “I know you wanna stay up and be like us, the cool guys, but unfortunately your mortality is being a major drag when it comes to that. I can see you’re super tired and don’tcha worry, I get it pal.” Bill patted his head in a rather dehumanizing manner. “We’ll work on that, ‘kay? Good boy.” The golden triangle crinkled his eye in a smiling way, light beginning to envelope his form. “Get plenty of sleep, I’ll be checkin’ in later. BYEEE~” Bill disappeared and focused his mind back on the demon crew crowding the throne room. Paci-Fire had broken out the time-punch again he was NOT getting left out of that!
Ford lay, shell shocked, on the bed as his breathing returned to normal. He hated so much the emptiness festering inside him... He hated that he wanted Bill to stay, to hold him as he fell asleep. God, this was a huge mess! His emotions were all over the place! With a frustrated grunt he pounded his fist against the mattress. "Get ahold of yourself Stanford. You don't need him! Trust no one, trust no one." Sighing, he tucked himself back into his briefs and wiped the rest of the mess on one side of the sheets. He loathed it, but Bill was right, he was very tired from everything… If he tried hard enough to discipline his thoughts maybe he wouldn't linger on the actions he’d performed and witnessed today?
The man sighed again, placing one hand over his tired closed eyes. It was a futile idea, wasn’t it?
Nearly an hour of twisting under the sheets, over the sheets, under the pillow and on the pillow proved this to be the case. Without a clear distraction, his mind kept turning back to the memory of death and fear. He could still remember the raw scent of gore around him, the way the screaming cut off when someone died. The despair on that woman's face when she witnessed her own child being murdered in such a brutal way was etched into his memory. The way it felt when her skull scorched and crumbled between his hands. That piece of human flesh he’d eaten... Though Stanford tried to tell himself time after time that the end would justify the means, that tiny voice of doubt kept nagging at him, telling him over and over that he wasn't even sure if he could beat Bill anymore. Maybe this entire world was doomed now, and the only thing he was accomplishing was damning his soul further into whatever pits of hell awaited after his death. Perhaps everything he’d done so far to protect his family and his home dimension had no meaning and was all for nothing in the end?
He didn't realize he was crying until the tears dripped down his neck. Stanford Pines hadn't been very religious in a long time, though he'd been raised Jewish and had of course studied various religions. If there was a final Judgment after death somewhere or somehow, he knew his soul would weigh heavy. There had to be some sort of punishment for his crimes, eventually it would catch up to him. Even after he died and―! The man sniffled, trying to stop his tears. A superstitious thought came to mind and Ford felt his chest go cold. What if― Bill called himself an entity, a god, though he'd also seen him labeled as a demon among other titles. Until the end of time. When he said those words he meant it, they shook on it, and that meant... that meant that no matter what he did, Bill Cipher would always own a part of him. Even if souls did not exist, he was certain that the mind and the 'self' were somehow connected and he'd promised it to the creature. Bill was older than the universe... it wouldn't matter if he had to wait another forty years, he would one day get what was HIS.
Ford exhaled heavily and wiped his face with a wet hand, exhaustion overcoming him suddenly. It was no use dwelling on it… If Bill truly did own a part of him, that would show once he reached ninety-two, right? When he died… The mortal frowned and noticed vaguely how stuffed his nose felt. Ugh, there were no tissues around… He’d just have to wait until he woke up to find some. For now he... needed to… sleep. Stanford closed his reddened eyes, not even managing to place his glasses aside before he fell deeply into the comfort of sleep.
You and me can’t you see
We’re playing with fire
Tell me now do you feel
This burning desire?
[swift] More to come, but dang, lemme tell you. I gotta jump in and keep isa from murdering characters so much in this. Shandra almost died.
[Isa] SORRY NOT SORRY~ Luckily for Shandra, Swift intervened and had her flying into a tree. It all good though 'cause wow Shandra lost a lot of her hair and look like she's been through hell during Weirdmageddon so I guess at least one balloon exploded B) The next chapter won't take as long, we're working on it <3
Chapter 6: Sinful Indulgence
Stanford and Bill talk over drinks, Time dies, and the monsters bond with their newest Henchmaniac!
[swift] OKAY SO thank you everyone for being so patient. x_x; There's been a lot of RL drama on my side which has delayed us working on this, but rest assured, that we are not abandoning the story. That being said, I think it would be best if Isa and I focused on finishing Gaze offscreen before posting much else. (Unless we change our minds and want to edit the next part. Stan makes an apperance! Anyway,)
When Ford awoke next it was slowly, like rising out of a black marsh, the remnants of a strange dream slipping from his grasp. Someone was limply petting at his cheek. He wanted to go back to sleep, and grumbled when the fingers bumped against his nose. "Quit it..." He muttered and raised a hand to brush Bill off him but any thought of that came to a screeching halt when he touched cold, stiff flesh and realized there was a weight pressed up against his shoulder. With an undignified yell he pulled away, turning to find― oh god, it was the woman’s headless corpse from yesterday!
Bill crinkled his eye with a laugh and used her hand to wave at him with mock cheer. "Morning-evening Fordsy! Got to thinkin' about how I, hey, probably should feed you again. How often do humans need to eat like, once a week?" Bill shrugged to himself and puppeted the arms over to pap on Ford's leg until he jerked away.
The whole thing was just too morbid! "B-Bill, will you get rid of that... that thing?"
"Aww, but then what're you gonna eat?" The triangle reached down with clawed fingertips and tore some of the flesh from the carcass, right at the sockets that Keyhole removed her legs from. He dangled it in front of Stanford's face 'enticingly', like as if it was a treat.
"...You're joking." Oh god he wasn't joking. "Sh-shouldn't you cook it first?" Human bodies were not able to handle such raw meat, his travels in the multiverse had landed him with strange sicknesses more than once from eating things his body couldn’t handle too well. Desperate times...
"Pffbt." Bill made a dismissive gesture and dropped the body, floating closer so he could dangle the strip of meat before the human's eyes. "Nah! You'll lose nutrients that way, or something! Just open your face gash~"
Stanford's own traitorous stomach gurgled in protest, and he realized it had been a while since he'd eaten anything. If he didn't eat this, would he have an opportunity to eat at all later? Starvation was not a fun feeling. It messed with your head, and the last thing he needed right now was a weakened mental state! Sigh. Obediently he opened his mouth so the triangle could pop the flesh in, forgoing chewing entirely to roughly swallow. He would really rather not taste it as well.
"Seee? That wasn't so hard, now was it? There's more where that came from!” He sounded excited. “I am so good at this pet-care thing." Oh god, Bill was pulling off chunks of skin and muscle, those inky hands coated in sticky dark blood... Okay. He could do this, if Ford just closed his eyes and didn't think about it, maybe he could get through this morning without too much trauma.
Bill stuffed morsel after morsel into his mouth, and he tried to ignore the cold weight of food in his gut. Shreds of fiber caught in his teeth and he shivered with disgust at the feeling, mentally reminding himself to wedge it out later.
Bill snickered beside his ear, eyelashes brushing the old man's cheek. "Had enough, Sixer?"
"Yeah." Ford said with a gulp, eyes cracking open a touch. He felt numb, or... at least he tried to convince himself he did. Mostly he felt satisfied since no longer the discomfort of hunger chewed at his insides. Horrible. Bill pressed a kiss to his temple and rubbed a hand over Ford's stomach, kneading it a little before floating away. He picked up the corpse and hid it behind his back again, causing the whole thing to vanish. Stanford still wasn’t entirely sure how BIll did that.
"Good! Don't say I never did anythin' for ya, all right? ANYWAY. Figured you'd wanna get started on some kinda nerd writing of yours, and when you get bored of that you should come join us!" Us, meaning the monster crew, no doubt. Stanford frowned and wiped his mouth on a sleeve while Bill continues. "My freaks love havin' you around, ya fit in great! Gotta go, see you later smart guy!" With a wink and a bright flash of light, he was gone again.
With a groan, Ford fell back against the bed, working both hands through his hair. It was going to be a long day, wasn’t it? He removed his smudged glasses and cleaned them with his yellow sweater, rubbing the soft material between his fingers. Why did Bill say that? About him fitting in... Bill… No. He set the spectacles back on his face and stood up, cracking his neck. He wouldn’t be distracted by Cipher’s inane games, he had work to do!
But first, he had to get the distracting flesh fiber out of his mouth!
Twirling a piece of chalk between his fingers, Ford felt like he could almost get a handle on the idea before― no, no! The man growled and the stick snapped against the black wall he'd been drawing and calculating on. Numbers stretched out along the hallway but it didn’t make any sense, it was impossible! Every time he got close to the solution it was like it slipped from his mind. He was trying to catch smoke here! He’d spent time exercising with his magic powers and writing for hours it felt like! He knew energy couldn't simply be created from nothing, so it had to be coming from someplace... repeatedly using levitation and telekinesis so far did have a minor draining effect on him, so he hesitantly theorized that it must come from his metabolism somehow. Could it be... Stanford paused and drew several new lines, setting down energy transference equations. Maybe his body was just acting as a conduit for another source... perhaps the rift itself? Or...
Ford turned and gathered up his notes, stuffing them back into the blank book he'd been using and stuffing THAT into his coat pocket. Judging by the low, droning thrum, the demons were still partying and most likely Bill was with them. Time to test another theory of his in getting to their location, however. Taking a deep breath and centering himself, he drew on the memory Bill gave him of the interior. It was chaotic, messy and twisting and nonsense. But... if he just focused, he could straighten some of the lines. Eyes closed, he walked confidently forward, trusting himself and his intellect. Only a few times did he brush against walls, but within ten minutes he found himself where he wanted to be when his eyes opened again. The man smiled. He knew it couldn't all be nonsense! He took the stairs down carefully and soon spotted Bill perched on top of a pyramid platform as if it was meant to act as a throne.
Cipher glanced up from his margarita when he noticed his pet decided all on his own to join them. Oh! This will be fun― hold on. Bill could feel the layout of the Fearamid in the edges of his awareness and noticed a curious path cut into it. No, not cut, more... welded together. Well well well, this was an interesting development! Most likely Stanford hadn't even realized what he did, and, yeah... if he glanced over Ford's thoughts the man was under the impression he simply had followed a route already available to him. He didn't realize that he'd CREATED the path, influenced the layout all on his own.
"Bill! I've been working a while on a theory and I wanted to ask you something." Stanford said as he climbed up the side of the platform, eyes bright. Whatever he was working on seemed to have distracted him pretty thoroughly, to have him look excited to nearly nostalgic levels. How cute!
"Don't see why not, why don'tcha come a bit closer and we'll see about that question of yours, hm?" Bill set his glass in the air, leaving it floating in place. Stanford came to stand by his side and Bill laughed. "No, no, closer. " Ford frowned and brushed elbows with him. "Closer..." With an internal sigh the man finally caught on to what Bill wanted and slung a leg around the triangle, plopping down onto his lap. "There we are! Much better~ All right, now what was that thing you've been working on, smart guy?" He maybe was a tiiiny bit intoxicated, but hey, if he was giving away knowledge to Stanford it wasn't going to be free. Bill wanted to run his hands under the dragon-hide and leave butterfly kisses against his cheek. So he did. To his credit, the man only blushed a tiny bit before getting on with whatever nerd thing he wanted to ask, even when Bill traced the dip of Stanford’s spine.
"Right. I've been experimenting with the energy you― that I have now, and while I do feel a tiny bit of exhaustion, I doubt that the majority of the power comes from my metabolism." He paused when black fingers scratched at the back of his neck, but Bill just winked at him with amusement and made a vague 'go on' gesture with his free hand. All right. "It would make far more sense if there were a reservoir of energy existing someplace outside of this dimension, and my body has only become a conduit for it to transfer here. That would make up for the limitations of the organic hardware and explain why I don’t burn out after anything more complex than floating."
Cipher muffled his laugh, almost vibrating with joy. Oh man, Ford was so focused on making the magic 'logical' that he didn't even notice how he'd admitted to his body holding him back. Oh, oh man that was great! All it took was a mystery to puzzle out and Stanford lost sight of his goals so quickly. The pleasure of the small victory made Bill smooth his hands over Stanford’s sweater. A few eyes glanced up from the dance floor and he pulled the man closer to him. For possessive show, mostly.
"I must say I'm impressed. You've sure been busy over-thinking that little thing! But you're on the right track― hold on a second." He sensed the change in space-time a few seconds before the knock came at the side of the pyramid.
"Open up, this is the police! Time police."
“What are THOSE lame morons doing here?” Hectorgon grumbled, upset at having their game interrupted. Pyronica on the other hand stood up with a frown, glancing immediately towards Bill along with most of the other monsters. Bill wasn’t the boss for nothing!
"All right, just play it cool, ditch the time punch Pacy! Let me do the talking." Bill ordered after shifting Ford to the side. He barely finished talking before the wall exploded, revealing a platoon of officers standing on the outside along with his least favorite temporal being; Time Baby. Ugh. Hate that guy!
“Bill Cipher, you are in violation of the rules of space-time, and possessing the body of a Time Officer.”
Oh, flat damned stars, like he hadn’t heard that sort of thing before! The triangle rolled his eye as the Time Officer in question started yelling at him.
However, as soon as Lolph was done talking about the charges against him and Blendin had screamed his nonsense about a temple, he could feel the wheels turning in Stanford's mind at his side. The most interesting thing Bill noted was recognition; ahh, so Fordsy had encountered the annoying time police on his travels, huh? Judging by the flavor of the memory, it wasn't any good encounters either. Joy! Oh, wait, now the annoying giant was opening his huge trap, could someone glue his lips shut or something? Duct tape it? Cut out his fat tongue!?
“Hear this, Cipher! If your rip in this dimension continues, it could destroy the very fabric of existence! You’ve already halted time in this universe to the point of catastrophe.” Time Baby boomed and pointed at the golden demigod, eyes sparking in anger. “Surrender now OR face my tantrum! I am NOT in the mood to have my nap-time cancelled yet AGAIN because of your untamed chaos!”
Bill just couldn’t help himself, he started to laugh; obnoxiously loud and malicious. Destroying space-time huh? Hah, so what? That’s what all the fun was about! He clasped his hands together in a mocking surrender. "Oh no, a tantrum? Whatever will I do about that~” He stretched out his arm, a strong current of energy gathering around his index finger. Ford could feel the surge of energy crackle and grow since he was hugged so close to the triangle’s side. “How about THIS?!” A bright powerful beam shot out from his fingertip and enveloped the platoon of officers along with the enormous baby, completely annihilating them and scattering their molecules into the vast void. Let's see that jerk try and shake that one off!
Bill blew away some excess smoke rising from his warm finger and laughed when Kryptos made a shocked comment. “You better believe I killed him! At least for like, a thousand years give or take. By that point this dump will be so vastly different he won’t even remember what he was here for!” He cackled alongside his cheering friends, the mood restored as the party music pounded on.
Bill chuckled at the sizzling power that had surged through him. He was definitely growing stronger by the day! He used a smidgeon of his magic to trap a section of the dispersing molecules from the disintegrated toddler, using it to smugly salt the rim of his margarita glass. Disassembling an alien giant baby never felt so satisfying; ah, did it feel great to be in charge or what!?
Stanford blinked away the black spots in his vision from the intense blast and tried to understand what he just witnessed. A temporal interdimensional police-army just tried to arrest Bill Cipher... and the demigod had destroyed them. That wasn't the only interesting thing though- being so close to the source when it all happened, for a brief second he swore he felt what it was like to have all that energy at his fingers. Must have been a side effect of their magical fields touching or something― It felt... awe-inspiring. Surprisingly thrilling! The man flexed his six fingers before resting them against the sleek surface below. He briefly wondered what the podium was for; did Bill just want to tower above the others?
“This is going to disrupt the future he hailed from isn’t it?” He couldn’t say he was too familiar with the infant ruler, but he’d had a few unfortunate run-ins with time anomaly removal associates working under Time Baby, and he was not unheard of in many places. Just like Cipher honestly. In Dimension 52 Bill was known under another name and he was pretty certain he’d seen his image once in that world where gemstones had humanoid bodies… How did Bill manage to KILL him though!? Wasn't Time Baby some sort of personification of time itself?
“What future?” The demigod laughed and squeezed Stanford closer, sipping from his drink casually. “Fordsy, that ‘future’ is now nothing but a doomed timeline. Just like the ‘future’ where you die from a heart attack at ninety-two. Time is fickle and that destiny crap you humans feed on is just all bark no bite.”
“Huh… How do you know what a doomed timeline is and what isn’t?”
”Perspective. In another ’future’ I’m guessing the you from there would consider our timeline doomed. In another I turned you into a golden statue and in another I bet Pine tree was eaten by Teeth.”
Stanford shivered and frowned. “Is time really that insignificant…” It was more frightening than fascinating honestly.
“It’s like an illusion. I mean none of the things I spoke about will collide with our jam, but they are all out there. Infinite numbers of possibilities because every action can yield a trillion different results, ya dig?” Bill lifted his pet back to straddle his lap.
The man parted his lips in surprise when the demigod trailed his inky hands down his side and slipped them underneath his sweater. “Perhaps… In one we never met.”
“Man, what a lame universe. Probably the one where I have ten mouths and vomit blood every time I speak.”
“…You just made that up.”
“Nah, unfortunately not. Boy, am I glad to be this me or what!” Bill created a third arm to reach for his floating drink, downing the glass in one shot. “By the way, whadd’ya wanna have tonight, Sixer? Spacial Sling? Death in the Afternoon?” he paused and chuckled, “Nah wait, scratch that last one, you’re too mortal for it. Hmm~” He wagged his eyelid playfully once he’d changed his lips back into the orb. “Procreation on the Earth sand?”
Stanford raised a thick eyebrow at that. “Isn’t the last one called sex on the beach?” He wasn’t too familiar with all cocktails, but he did know some of the most famous ones. He prefered strong alcohol anyway, at least when he decided to drink. Alcohol clouded his analytic and rational judgment so he seldom indulged in it too much. But he had to admit, that drunk night talking with Keyhole had been very nice...
“Eh, close enough.” Bill flicked his wrist and summoned a refill of his drink. “Y’know what, have a taste of this!” He guided the margarita to the man’s mouth, encouraging him to take a sip.
Stanford did, and he was puzzled by the peculiar flavor. He did recognize it as a margarita in base, but something tasted very odd about it. Not in a negative way necessarily! Perhaps it was the salt… “It’s good.” W-Whoa, the after-taste was more intense than he’d expected! “Rather strong for a margarita…”
The triangle laughed. “Strong? Man, you’re such a lightweight.” He teased and conjured a glass with a darker drink, starry specks floating around inside. “How ‘bout this?”
The scientist accepted the drink and carefully sipped from it, tasting it on his tongue. “Not too bad. It looks like I’m drinking a cosmos.”
“Maybe you are~”
“I find that hard to believe, no galaxy could be this tiny, can it?”
“You’re still thinking like a human. Open your eyes more and broaden your mind, Sixer. Don’t let the phony teachings of this place hold you back. Society wants to restrict you, always has!”
“But I must base my analyses on something; I can’t just pull theories out of thin air and expect them to work.” Stanford brought the glass to his lips again. “Even with magic you need to have a basis in theory; assumptions and guessing won’t lead you to the right answer… It would be just as absurd as using fire to beat water.”
Bill hummed and traced the scar on his pet’s chest gingerly, enjoying the texture against his fingertips. “What a limited way of thinking. Fire can beat water, how do ya think boiling works? Knowledge can easily be erased or changed depending on many things; truth is a concept that will always be fluid and fickle, changing dependin’ on who ya ask.” He explained and drew the man closer to him, showering his face with butterfly kisses. “When will you stop using that meaty think pan like a mortal?”
The human’s breath quickened when he felt the hands move under the sweater and he swallowed lightly. “I am mortal…” he murmured, his cheeks reddening a bit after Bill’s lashes caressed his face in a clear affectionate manner. “I am mortal, Bill, why do you keep forgetting that?” Stanford finally asked, reaching to touch the golden crackling surface of the demigod. Something did not feel right. His words troubled and left him perplexed. Was he supposed to just toss away everything he’d ever learned and… What then!? What was Bill after, what did he want from him?
“I don’t forget anything, Stanford.” The triangle chastised with a click of his tongue, a desire to rip the sweater apart and ravish his pet’s skin surfaced, but he remained composed. For now. “I just think it’s high time you threw those primitive teachings away. It’s for your own good; you want to understand the secrets of the universe, right? Well, you won’t as long as you keep frying that slimy brain against your skull so to speak.”
“That is to say… My organic ‘shell’ is holding me back?” There it was again. His human state was limiting him… The same thing Keyhole had been mentioning. The words felt familiar on his tongue- wait, hadn’t he inadvertently said something similar when he first came in search of Cipher?
“That’s right! Glad you’re getting the picture here.” Bill praised, creating a fourth arm to stroke his graying soft locks. “This fleshsack ain’t gonna last forever, heck, it’s breaking right now; can you feel all that cellular senescence goin’ on in there because I sure can and boy is it ugly!”
Ford frowned at that, blinking as he attempted to understand where Cipher was going with this. “Yes… It’s called aging. Mortality.”
“Exactly! Such a pathetic thing shouldn’t limit your brilliant potential and mind.” Maybe he was a little tipsy and excited, but hey, it was a good time to bring this up, right? Time was dead anyway.
“Memento mori.” Stanford spoke quietly, sipping from his glass and creasing his eyebrows. The hands against his skin felt colder now, less safe. He didn’t know what to make of this, and while the thought of being immortal of course seemed interesting and amazing in some aspects… It also felt wrong in more ways than one. The way the demigod spoke sent eerie shivers down his spine!
“UGH, always hated that saying.” Bill complained and rolled his eye. “Honestly, all it does it keep humans from trying their hardest and cowardly bowed beneath fake concepts.”
“Bill.” He tried interrupting the train of thought with little luck.
“‘Remember you are mortal’ oh please, in that case never get out of bed because seriously, tripping on the floor can break your fragile string of a neck!” The man flinched as the fingers on his stomach felt sharper and shifted a hand to make sure they wouldn’t claw at him.
“Or, don’t ever consume anything because you know what, that plate of dead mammal can very well contain poison that will melt your gross sausage insides!”
“BILL, CALM DOWN!” Stanford asserted and grasped the hand, feeling it twitch. “I know you think we humans are―“
“You are not one of them.”
“E-EXCUSE ME?” Stanford inched away from the triangle slightly, trying to not show any fear despite his heart pounding wildly in his chest! He did not wish to enrage him as Cipher could be most unpredictable when mad. Fortunately his colour was returning to yellow and his pupil regained its slit-like form. “I am human―!”
“You don’t have to be.”
W-WHAT!? Stanford looked down in complete bafflement, opting to finish his drink in order to not have to match that serious stare. Um… he was fairly certain that not even Bill could make someone immortal! Not to mention… He didn’t want to be! Sure, it seemed wonderful at first thought, but he’d had thirty years of contemplating to realize it was a young man’s wish. He wanted to take Bill down to repay the mistake he’d made. Get revenge in a sense for being so betrayed and used… After that, he’d be completely content with dying. “What are you talking about? Have you uh, had too much to drink maybe? S-Should I get you a glass of water?” Stanford had no idea how to react to this and all he really wanted right now was to leave and go back to his theories. Areas he was more familiar with!
“I can do it. You just have to LET me.” Bill ignored the comment about his alcohol intake and kept looking at the man with a serious look. “I can take away what limits you. Make you perfect and… eternal.” The demigod switched out his eye for his lips and leaned in to nip over his pet’s neck. He couldn't hold himself back any longer!
“WHAT…? You told me you c-can’t―!” Did he really want him to touch and kiss him right now!? This felt really strange and uncomfortable! “Bill…”
“I can. It’s just something I don’t do for anyone.”
“Because you’re not ‘just anyone’ to me, you dense five-sensed animal! You’re important to me, something like that.”
“…” Stanford wasn’t sure if he should take that at face value or not. Would Bill even admit to having ‘feelings’ for him, if on the extremely unlikely chance he did have them? Hard to say. Though the thought of being called all those flattering terms of affection again; Special… Brilliant… Genius… He closed his eyes and pushed against the yellow surface, showing that he did not want Bill’s constant necking. “I’ve thought about immortality before… What person hasn’t considered the prospect of it?” He paused to push harder when Bill wouldn’t stop ravishing his neck and jaw. “But I don’t want it. I don’t think any once-mortal being could handle it. It would drive you to insanity or apathy. Neither sounds appealing to me…!” He murmured and gasped when the demon bit down on his flesh, drawing blood. Oh god...
“What’s wrong with being ‘insane’ exactly? Isn’t it just a different way of seeing things? Another perspective humans consider wrong?”
“Bill… This is not―“
“You’d have more time to try to ‘beat’ me.”
“...What?” Did Stanford hear that right!?
“You’d have more time to be with me.”
That wasn’t what he’d said, was it? Was his hearing getting faulty!? “We still have… 30 plus years if I still die at 92 in this future.” He had to play this carefully. He couldn’t enrage him in fear of blowing his cover, but also… NOT give into whatever he wanted in fear of not sticking to the plan! This was absurd; he was probably drunk, right? Oh god, Bill being drunk, just that gave him images he’d rather not have. It would explain his erratic behavior though… Who knew how many glasses the demigod had before he’d even arrived. Speaking of that… Ford gave his cup a suspicious look. M-Maybe he was getting a little tipsy too, it would explain his hearing maybe… Did Bill possibly spike his drink?
Bill swirled the contents of his glass while he watched Stanford muse over the offer. Oh no, that future wouldn’t happen. He’d make sure of that, even if it’d take time judging by Sixer’s stubborn nature to clutch to his pathetic humanity. “Perhaps.” The triangle leaned back finally, licking up the little blood he’d drawn. “We’ll see, my pet.” Bill downed his drink and the flipped back his eye, looking contemplative. “I’m sure you’ll grow to see things my way.” He playfully touched Stanford’s red nose and chuckled. Oh yes, he was definitely a bit tipsy… Didn’t stop him from being able to scheme though! Mmm, yes. Just thinking about the man facing his own morality and losing made his bricks tingle! All in good time. “The night is still young Fordsy, let’s have another glass, eh?” He didn’t wait for an answer but summoned a refill of both their drinks. It was fine that Stanford rejected his offer of immortality really; it wouldn’t matter in the end. He’d crawl and beg for it when he learned that heroes don’t WIN in Bill’s world. It was only a matter of time.
Ford sighed as his glass refilled itself; he hadn't even finished his first one entirely. The liquid was odd and he swore it buzzed with every sip he took. He really didn't want to get drunk, there was so much work to do! No matter how many years he might have, he couldn't make his family wait that long, nor the entire world, before he could re-close the rift. They would be struggling to survive while he was sitting up here, pampered. 'Pet' Bill had called him, and really, that was the truth of the situation. Though gilded, it was still a cage.
"I would rather not stay, I was busy with work―" He felt claws trace along his skin in a manner that can only be a threat, a single eye staring a challenge.
"Why don't you take a break! You've been pourin' over your equations for hours. " Bill said with a slight slur to his voice. Really, the worst thing was Stanford paying attention to anything or anyone that wasn't him. Wasn't he interesting enough for the self-proclaimed 'man of science' to study for millennia anyway? Oh there was a thought- "Hey, IQ, I just had the best idea~ You shooould," he drew out the word while he ran a hand down to grab at Ford's ass. "Write a new entry for me! Don't get me wrong, that 'do not summon at all costs' stuff was pretty funny, but don'tcha think it could use some updating? Oh, speakin' of which, here, for you!" Placing down his drink, Bill made a show of checking both his 'sleeves' before pulling the journal trilogy from behind his bowtie. He shoved them into Ford's palm.
"You're... just giving them back?" He set his glass down before turning the books over- each was small enough to fit in his palm, due to his new height. Part of him suspected a trick. Bill Cipher wasn’t one to give things away for free. There was always a cost.
"Sure, why not? Thought about burnin' them but, heck, they're yours after all! Always thought the dusty-old-tomb aesthetic was nice for ya." That was his favorite human all over; books and writing, medium and language; mathematics. Blah blah BORING. All about order and clean lines, whereas Cipher preferred wildly-shifting colors, anything that came in threes, and chaos. Simplicity made sure you translated well in the mindscape though, so he dressed down more often than not. Keep it classy.
"...thank you." Ford said after a moment, stuffing the journals carefully into his coat pocket for safe-keeping. Bill 'winked' at him with a thumbs up and sipped his drink. How was he doing that, anyway... drinking without anyplace for it to go. Not to mention... where anything came from before he just 'created' it behind his back? It was eerily like one of those old cartoons.
"Mm, you're thinkin' too hard again. Gonna give your face even more wrinkles than it already has!" Bill complained loudly in his ear, hands stroking down his thighs. Stanford smoothed out his face, unaware that he'd been squinting while lost in thought.
"I was just wondering how your mouth worked. There couldn't possibly be that much empty space behind it, given your dimensions."
"Makin' me into a broken record here Sixer, you can't think about it with your limited perception, but hey, why don't ya just take a look for yourself? Experiment! Since your ‘logic’ says it don’t work when, trust me, it sure does buddy."
Stanford wasn't quite expecting that and jumped a bit when Bill opened his 'eye' all the way right next to his face. Oh- well... maybe Bill thought he couldn't trust his human senses, but they seemed as good a starting point as anything. What else could he trust if not himself? Swallowing his hesitation, he ran two fingers around the outer- well, they weren't really lips, though he was certainly using them that way, perhaps a better term was ‘lid’. Hm, there was another question- was it an eye that occasionally could switch into a mouth, or a mouth that Bill could use as an eye? (Both? Neither? Did it matter?) Ford hummed thoughtfully when the lid moved beneath his fingers, changing from smooth but unyielding to a softer, more flesh like texture. Interesting-
Bill was almost drunk enough to not believe this was happening; almost. He knew that Stanford, ever curious, would jump at the chance to inspect something new about his old muse, but this was too good. It was sort of hilarious how little he changed from being always full of questions about the mindscape and whatever 'theoretical' mathematics they were working on that week- Oh! The triangle’s glow flickered in surprise and he nearly bit Ford's limb in the process; because of course the meatbag was forward enough to just shove nearly his entire arm into him.
"Oh, it's... cold?" Ford furrowed his brow. Huh. He hadn't expected it, but several inches inside Bill's mouth the temperature took a sudden drop along with the... humidity? Possibly; he discovered after stroking it that only the black tongue was damp inside. His fingers tingled from the thick dark fluid that most likely served as saliva. Hm, that was fascinating! Retreating, he next inspected the teeth that Bill almost bit him with. They seemed mixed with no clear 'pattern' or function; shearing, slicing, puncturing, grinding... all were represented in the set, and when Stanford tried to follow them deeper they extended far beyond his reach. A soft sound from Bill snapped him from the exploration and made him realize that he was, indeed, up to his shoulder in his eye-mouth. "Sorry! I didn't realize you could feel that." While Cipher didn’t seem upset, Ford pulled his hand out just in case. The way the being slurped over his fingers made blood rush to his face.
"Hm, 'course I can Fordsy, where'dya think it went?" Bill blinked his eye back to normal, fidgeting with his bowtie and hoping that no one noticed the pink hue he'd taken on briefly. Maybe it didn't stimulate him in a physical sense, but it was an intimate closeness anyway, considering he didn’t let anyone deep inside his maw like that unless he was eating them.
"I suppose I didn't think it went anywhere. After all, your size―" Ford was cut off by a hand on his mouth.
"Hm, nope, you were sooo close, come on!" Bill leaned forward and locked lips with Ford in a brief, but heated, kiss. Stanford pulled away from it as soon as he can, more frustrated than anything by Bill's stubborn determination to be vague. Yet... when he turned his head to the side to wipe his mouth, something about Bill’s shape shifted in his peripheral. Staring directly at him only showed the same yellow triangle he'd always known, but if he just... unfocused a little... the lines around him seemed to blur. Ford was struck by the sudden notion that there was a lot MORE of Bill Cipher than he could see at any time.
"There ya go, knew you weren't as dumb as you played~" He cooed with a scratch under Ford's clever little chin.
That statement was pretty suspect. When Ford was about to reply however he noticed the rest of the demons in the room were giving them their undivided attention. Oh, shit, for HOW LONG had they been watching him and Bill!? A blush worked across to his cheeks when Pyronica made a very lewd gesture. They were laughing and grinning at him, teeth flashing like a jury of hyenas. Stanford's ears burned as he ducked down, wanting to disappear entirely for a moment; better than having to face that everyone saw Bill feeling him up for the past thirty minutes and... oh god they saw him stick his hand inside his mouth! He was so embarrassed that he gulped his drink when the cup was pushed back into his palm. Maybe if he could get drunk he could forget this experience...
"Shh, don't get all worked up Sixer, they love it! Look!" Bill turned him around and forced him to gaze out at the party. Wow, there certainly was a lot of eyes all watching him and monsters hooting and whistling. In Ford's ear the voice dropped low, just for him. "They're sooo jealous; they want you. They want to be you~" He wasn't really sure what to think of that; the idea behind it was mildly appealing. There was a deep vanity in Stanford that mirrored Bill's own, he wanted to be admired and liked by others.
That’s why the idea of ‘fitting in’ had distracted him earlier after all. The idea of finding ‘his people’ had always been so far away for him...
Bill bit onto the soft lobe and was rewarded by a choked gasp. His pet was so pretty, so easy to make undone. Fingers wrapped around the gold fabrics so he could peel up Ford's shirt and expose his underbelly to the rest of his friends, showing him off. Hungry eyes latched onto the scarred skin. He stroked it, tracing the pattern of hair up and down his stomach. While not everyone in his crew was sexual, (Xanthar always sat out as a rule, although he was one of the cuddliest!) most could get behind this sort of fun as easily as mayhem. "So! Who wants a piece of him, hmm?" He said with high-pitched humor, cackling as Teeth practically dropped his cup to scramble up the stairs. "Hey, no biting though, I mean it~"
"B-Bill! I don't think―"
"Relax, it'll be good for ya~ But seriously, if I catch any of you maiming, you'll go in the punishment cube!" He let the threat hang in the air. Only he could damage his playthings, no one else. A surge of fierce possessiveness burnt his color orange for a second before he returned to normal. No, the Henchmaniacs wouldn't do anything to hurt Ford, they liked him almost as much as Bill did. His friends would play nice, they didn’t really have a choice.
Pyronica sauntered up behind Teeth, Keyhole following after a moment’s hesitation. A quick glance to the side confirmed 8-ball and Pacifier were watching but prefered to ‘entertain’ one another. Kryptos looked rather flustered and probably wasn't going to join in. Good. He didn't really want that square with his mitts all over Fordsy.
"Hey scruffy, ready to pick up where we left off?" Pyronica purred as she pet a hand through his hair, setting it crackling with the heat. Not hot enough to burn, just puff out the strands. Bill man-handled Ford around so the man was leaning back against him on the platform. His hands wandered up to cup Stanford’s crotch. He could feel the man’s confusion and blurry awareness seeping through his aura when something wet enveloped his right hand. Teeth was, thankfully, making good on the whole not-eating-my-fleshy-human thing, content to only taste and rub his tongue against Ford's calloused palm. Someone rubbed the growing bulge in Stanford’s pants but he was distracted by the pink demon grabbing a handful of Ford’s hair. "Say, can I take him for a ride, boss?" She batted her eye at Bill and he could only laugh.
"Sure thing toots, just leave him in one piece yeah?" Ford started to protest when Pyronica slung a leg over his body. Oh! He gasped when he suddenly had the pleasantly warm heat of her groin shoved into his face, leaving him frozen in surprise. After an encouraging scratch on his cheek by Bill, though, he can't say he wasn't curious. Someone must have taken his glasses, he can't remember, but they weren’t cutting into his nose as he tentatively stuck out his tongue. Her skin was smooth and warm, which was expected, though... no, he couldn't feel any sort of vulva. She tilted her hips up to give him a better angle and his tongue suddenly plunged into a hidden slit. The warmth he expected; the squirming tendrils he did not. His head was so foggy that it didn't even matter, the odd cilia had such a fascinating texture when he swirled his tongue through them. Ford tentatively tasted the slick fluids and was rewarded with a stroke through his hair.
Pyronica licked her lips rather sensually as Stanford’s tongue worked inside of her nook, an eager moan leaving her plump lips. “Say, you’re not all bad at that, sugar.” She praised, leaning down with exceptional flexibility to place some scorching kisses on his forehead and into the graying locks. She briefly felt a hot, strange spot against one of his temples and glanced up to meet Bill’s knowing eye. He sighed dramatically.
“You feel that metal junk too?”
“The plate… It must have pretty strong sigils on it.” The demoness grinned down at the mortal pleasuring her, eye dilated from the stimulation. “You’re really sssomethin’ Sixy. No one’s been able to keep Cipher out like you have… Ah, bet that pissed ya off, didn’t it Billy-boy?” She looked back at her boss who scoffed.
“What? More like it annoyed me.”
“Hm, really?” Pyronica used her hands to keep touching the man beneath her, stroking his fragile skin and soft hair in encouragement. “’Cause I think… It made you more than annoyed.” She flashed her mismatched teeth, incisors glinting in the neon rave light.
Bill was amused by her teasing and humored it, leaning in closer casually. “Oh?” He knew where this was headed and quite frankly he didn’t mind. “Why don’tcha convince me how angry I was about it then, hot stuff?”
The pink lady needed no more incentive and parted her lips to kiss over his golden surface, their energies crackling and sizzling. Pyronica licked under his eye and waited for the sclera to fold in and reveal that ethereal maw. Bill was honestly one of the best kissers, and his saliva was like a drug, it was sooo intoxicating! She moaned loudly when Stanford slid his tongue along her nubby tentacles inside her slit, and indulged in the moment. This was just as chaotic as burning down human houses!
Bill enjoyed this sort of leisure with his friends; it was a way of bonding really! While he much preferred invading consciousnesses and melding minds with someone, really, he was too superior to do it with just anyone! It was far too easy to consume other’s minds; his own was too vast to be equaled. But hey, this was nice too and his pet was really enjoying himself evident by his meat vessel’s reactions. Hm, someone should pay attention to that growing thing in his pants… If no one did, well, what did those mortals say about getting things done right? Oh yeah, always gotta do it yourself.
Stanford breathed heavily, using his tongue to lick and swirl around the moving mass thriving inside the demoness’, uh, slit? He was uncertain what to call this sort of genitalia, it was so alien and the fluid, oh god… The fluid tasted so strange! He didn’t understand where it came from, but his mouth obediently worked on extracting more, stimulating the small writhing things rubbing against his lips and tongue. The man tried sucking against one of the crawling inner walls and distantly heard her moan in delight. Slender feminine hands raked along his scalp pleasantly. Nghh, that worked too apparently! His head felt immensely foggy and unfocused on everything else other than this carnal desire to please the beings he could and receive that attention anew. Stanford had always been weak for flattery and attention, but he did never realize just how much it affected him. Man, he wasn't sure before... still wasn't sure but, it did feel good to have everyone wanting to touch him... to be touched by him. Knowing he was liked this much and they depended on him to please them now, it was a foreign feeling, but a wonderful one. He had power in a sense. He was popular and they all wanted him. It was intoxicating and he made a renewed effort in pleasing everyone he could touch. (Not to mention the alcohol must have played a part in his eagerness too. Bill DID spike that drink, didn’t he..?)
Stanford allowed one of his hands to idly stroke the tongue licking him back, drawing his fingers over the textured surface; this elicited a nice response from Teeth. At least he assumed it was a good thing that the monster grabbed his wrist and was keeping him in place. He shifted his other hand out blindly and was surprised when someone gripped it carefully. Stanford turned his head, but he couldn’t see beyond the pink thighs encasing his face. Whoever it was seemed rather curious about his hands, busy spreading his fingers apart and tracing each tendon. Somehow, an action that alone he wouldn’t have seen as sexual took on a new meaning with his face buried between someone’s legs. He groaned into the nook, dark eyes growing half-lidded when his pants were pushed down and someone or something touched his growing length. Now that it was free it was quickly getting erected from the stroking and handling. W-Who was it? Did it matter… Well no, but that wouldn’t sate his curiosity, would it…?
Once Pyronica’s hips rolled a little and more of her sweet liquids ran into his mouth, he found that he didn’t care much about finding out what everyone was doing. He should focus on his own task after all.
“Oh, Bill… He’s good at thisss.”
“I can hear that, toots. In fact I think every tiny human left out there in Gravity Falls can~” He chuckled against her lips and let his forked black tongue rim them slowly, a string of steamy saliva connecting them. “What would your twin say, Fordsy? I bet he’d be reeeally jealous.” Bill laughed, leaning back again and exchanging his mouth for his eye to look down at his pet working very diligently. He reached to scratch his sideburn affectionately, touching the upper part of his ear sensually.
They were talking now…? He couldn’t understand all the things Bill said while lapping down the fluids and stimulating the small appendages along her tight and warm walls. Actually he couldn’t really ask anything either, the only thing that could come out of his lips was heavy breaths tickling the hot skin and also moans. His gave a twitch when someone touched beneath the legs and he groaned through his nose. Back arched to the best of his ability, he bucked his hips eagerly against whoever was stroking him.
"Exactly.” The triangle snickered to himself when Stanford tried to say something that turned into a muffled moan halfway. “Well, guys, isn’t this a great way to spend some quality time?”
“Oh, definitely!” Teeth drooled and his tongue lolled outside of his mouth.
“Mmm, we should do this more often.” Pyronica added with another delighted and very sexual moan. Her boss wasn’t wrong when he said she was loud, she KNEW she was. Why should she hold back anyway? Her sounds usually made Kryptos turn a funny shade of blue and humans were just as easily flustered by sexual noises. It was more fun this way!
“Whaddabout you Keys? D’ya like touching the flesh stick?” Bill downed another summoned drink in one swoop and slurred a little from its instant effect.
The little cyan being nodded and watched the veins blooming along the shaft in his hands. “Sure, it’s fascinating how it moves and… gets so hard.” He could already guess why that was, but that didn’t make it less interesting! Keyhole was more voyeuristic than actively participating usually, but he had been curious about Sixer’s body. What scientist wouldn’t be? The bulge on his pants had seemed awfully tight and inconvenient, so why not help a buddy out? It seemed his touch and stroking worked considering the dark shade of red the head turned. He ran his fingers over the slick top of the length and hummed, testing the stickiness of the substance between his short digits.
“Y’know… You should totally get closer while doing that thing! Yeah.” Bill giggled to himself, his tipsiness growing farther into drunken territory. How many glasses had he had now? “Do it for scienceee!” His pupil dilated in anticipation.
“What, like this?” Keyhole leaned in closer and couldn’t help tasting the fluid on his fingers. Hm, a bit salty but not too bad. The analytic carefully extended his tongue and let it run over the slick head. The consistence seemed rather rigid huh…
“Yesss. Stay there and uh, keep touchin’ it. Down by the…” The demigod paused to find the word for it. “Things full of microscopic dumb human procreation stuff.” He summoned another drink as Pyronica giggled huskily at his speech; nearing her release judging by her shifting and constant drooling.
“You mean these… Skin sacks?”
“Yeah, touch ‘em between so it’s like― no not at the bottom, more towards the sausage-y looking bit. There you go.”
“Boss, are you okay?” Teeth asked finally as he didn’t understand one bit of this conversation anymore. “Why are ya talking about sausages? Are we having sausages next?”
“It would be fun to get some live sausages.” Hunting during the night was pretty fun! Probably more so considering he was very entertained at the moment. But for now he wanted to see Keyhole get half his face covered in disgusting human reproductive sploodge!
Keyhole wrapped his hands around the shaft curiously. There was some sort of odd scar tissue below the head- it looked fairly even so it probably wasn't an injury. The soft skin sacks below were interesting too, and the demon rolled them in his palms; apparently to Sixer's delight judging by the way he kept twitching.
Bill shivered with anticipation, struggling not to laugh at the way Keyhole was handling his human. Oh man, this was gonna be HILARIOUS! Stanford was really trying to please everyone too, judging by the way his brain kept jumping between various tasks. It's a struggle for his feeble mind to do more than one thing at a time, and here he was trying to rake his fingers in Teeth's mouth, thrust with his hips, and pleasure Pyronica with his mouth. Lot of coordination required and even if had one hand free, he struggled. That very hand reached up and, oh. His color flickered when six fingers rested against his geometry, tracing his bricks in sloppy patterns. It wasn't exactly doing much of anything to Bill, of course, but it still felt nice and hey, his puppet was trying, that alone was oh so sweet.
He moved his hands down to Ford's sides, pressed his fingers against his body and clawed up his chest without breaking the skin. The man let out a muffled shout before shuddering hard and twitching.
"H-Hey!" Came a squeak of surprise from Keyhole when he got a faceful of cum. He crossed his arms with a huff while Bill erupted into pure laughter. That was exactly as funny as he thought it was going to be! Perfect.
"Hahah, whoops! Didn't I tell ya about that? Musta' slipped my mind, Keys ol' buddy~" He fluttered his eye at the disgruntled demon, watching him try to wipe the gunk off. Teeth suddenly noticed what had happened.
"Oooh, what's that?" The odd maw scrambled over to Keyhole, curious as always. He had only one way of inspecting things he was curious about, though, and the cyan demon realized this about two seconds before Teeth licked over his face.
"Teeth no, get your gross tongue off me!"
"But it's salty!"
"I don't care, AAUGH!"
The two wrestled off the edge of the platform, rolling to the ground just as Pyronica tugged Ford's attention back to her. He had been a little distracted with the euphoria of his release and the sound of struggle nearby. She made the most pitiful whine though, so he felt obligated to finish what she started. His mouth was tired though, not to mention his face hurt from how hard she was grinding on it, but that didn't compare to the beautiful moan she made when he sucked on the soft bed of tendrils. He felt rather proud he could have that effect. She must have been close, because when he rested a hand on her hip and pressed his tongue deep the walls of her nook clung to it. Pyronica shivered and didn’t bother to muffle her sounds. Suddenly his mouth and nose were flooded by a slick, oily fluid and it did not taste good at all anymore. He squirmed and struggled not to choke on the bitter release, finally being let go after she coated his jaw and throat. Pyronica giggled and rolled off him, leaving the stain of black across his yellow sweater. His head was still full of cotton but he had a sneaking suspicion that this was petrol... it certainly smelled like it. Even as tired as he was, he couldn't truly turn off the part of his brain that wanted to examine everything. Still. He alternated breathing through his mouth and spitting diesel onto the floor.
"Mmmm, thanks for the ride Fordsy, you're pretty good at that." She said with a smile before leaning down and kissing some of her fluid from his lips. It was almost enough to make his libido sit up and pay attention, but.... to be honest he was a bit old for that, and his stamina wasn't what it used to be. He weakly wiped the gunk from his mouth, not bothering to even sit up.
"Sure thing, anytime, Pink, ol' Fordsy's a star like that, ain'tcha buddy? Just loves it! And hey, I don't mind sharing, so long as everyone remembers who he belongs to, got it?" Bill slurred as he shot Pyronica double finger-guns, only a little bit threatening.
”It’s hard to forget that, boss.” The demoness glanced at the exhausted man, chuckling at the amount of glowing sigils and symbols present on his naked body. It was something the human couldn’t see with his limited senses yet, but it was very clear to her and the rest of the crew. Not to mention it was bound to keep other unwelcome spirits and creatures away; no one messed with Bill Cipher’s stuff after all. “You really like marking him, don’tcha?”
“Naturally! 'Sides he loves it, would'na got those tattoos otherwise.” The triangular demigod considered summoning another refill and squinted at his margarita glass, the pupil moving eerily in his drunken state.
“I’ll take that as a yes.” Pyronica licked her fingertips, finding some of her oily juices there.
Bill used his third arm to hold his glass, which he had refilled after not too long consideration. “Would ya be a doll and gimmie my pet? I don’t feel like moving and Sixer looks a bit too ah, preoccupied to get over here.”
“Sure thing.” She picked the coughing man up, stroking his fluffy locks before handing him over to the golden shape. He was so fuzzy! No wonder Bill liked to pet him so much.
“Guys, anyone feel like playin’ spin the person?” 8-Ball asked casually as if the orgy hadn’t been that unusual an event. And it really wasn’t. He preferred playing with Paci-fire’s belly mouth, stimulating the plumper demon with his long fingers. Heh, it was always good to caress the base of his horns too, he could be so sensitive there. “You feel like playing Pacy?”
“Why not.” Came the raspy grunt from the ox-like monster, his red aura pulsing a bit more than normal. “I’ll need something stronger than this punch, though.”
“I’m in.” Hectorgon grinned and floated to them.
“I guess―“ Kryptos was interrupted by Pyronica who’d sauntered over to him and let her hand glide seductively over one of his silvery sides before grasping the small portruding part above his eye, pulling him into her hot arms. “Um… ‘Roni?”
“Of course we’ll play. What about you Xanthar? Morpho?”
Xanthar decided to sit out, content with watching, but Amorphous Shape gave an air-cutting affirmation.
“What ‘bout you bosh? You and Schixy wanna play?” Teeth asked while he had half of Keyhole’s head inside of his mouth, muffling the cyan creature’s displeasure by licking against his face. Mmm, salty!
“Nah, it’s ‘kay.” Bill slurred and held onto the mortal who was getting rather confused in his weariness. “Fordsy can’t play some of the meaner stuff yet; fragile fleshsack yanno?” He placed one hand on his soft scalp and scratched it gently.
“S-Spin the person…? Isn’t it called spin the bottle?” Stanford murmured, leaning against the warm and comforting surface of the demigod. Why was it comforting to be petted like this…? It really shouldn’t be, should it?
“You think we can spin human bottles? They’re like… THIS tiny. Not even good for jenga.”
“Ah, of course... It is sometimes hard to adjust to this new size I have to admit. My body doesn’t seem to get used to it as fast as I’d like it to.”
“Don’tcha worry, it’ll get easier buddy.”
The scientist frowned at that, but didn’t have any energy to start questioning the demigod. Bill was definitely more than tipsy and he himself he… Well, he felt as limp and weak as a straw of spaghetti! All that movement and effort had tired his old body out. Hell, even his tongue ached when he moved it too much! Stanford wouldn’t say it out loud, but he did often have trouble keeping up with his age. His mind wanted to do things his body no longer could, his stamina had decreased tremendously despite his efforts to stay healthy and in shape. It was of course, inevitable and natural.
That didn’t make it easy to accept though. When your mind was as curious and analytical as ever, it was difficult to acknowledge your body wasn’t as strong as it used to be. In a way, Stanford was kind of grateful of the empowering effect the magic had on him; even if it shut him out from his own wards and all... When airborne it felt much easier to move and do what he wanted, he felt free.
He was still wary of its effects, but he appreciated the way it made him feel stronger and more alive.
“It's nice, isn’t it?”
Stanford glanced at the large eye that was observing the game starting below them. He couldn’t help but grow a little redder in his cheeks when that black slit-like pupil shifted to look at him. Bill did have a rather, err intense stare. Almost hypnotizing in a good way. “Yes…” The man didn’t know what to think because he did enjoy this, but he really shouldn’t. He wasn’t here to fall for the golden god’s charms again, that would be nothing but counterproductive! His goal was to defeat him, yet here he was, being pampered like a cat! While frustrating, deep down he couldn’t refuse the soft touches Bill administered on his head and neck. It felt so good. Sinful indulgence, wasn’t that a good label for what he was doing?
Perhaps he should try and see this as an experiment instead? If Bill was favoring him like Keyhole said, then he could probably use it against him in the long run. It meant he trusted him in a sense, yes? The giggly demeanor of the triangle distracted him from his scheming thoughts.
“Ohoho my, Pacy sure can kiss! Morpho will be feelin’ that stuff for a while.”
He glanced down at the game wearily, trying to focus on its participants. “Wait…” Stanford reached up to touch the bridge of his nose, feeling around for the normal weight settled there usually. “Where are my glasses…? Why can I see?” Oh god… He could actually see without his glasses! He swallowed and blinked in confusion. “Bill―“
“Mmm?” Bill had exchanged his eye for his mouth and leaned in to trail kisses down his pet’s neck, nipping at the magic marks with enthusiasm. “What’s on your mind, genius?”
“I… I can see without my glasses… It’s uh, quite strange.” Ford gasped at the sensation of his lips, er eyelids? Rubbing his skin in that delightful manner. H-How could Bill talk while he was kissing his neck? Ahh… He sloppily grasped onto the bright side of the demigod, mostly to keep himself balanced and not fall off his lap.
“That’s nice~” Bill was a bit too busy to pay attention to what Ford said. He tasted sooo good! The geometric shape suckled at the exposed skin, making a purplish bite mark that made Stanford whimper so beautifully. “I know you like being marked…” He flicked out his tongue to lick at the bruise, saliva prickling the sensitive area.
“I, um… Ah!” The old man yelped when Bill raised his knees and made him slide down onto him. Oh dear, was he almost naked!? H-How could he NOT have noticed that until now!? His face bloomed into several hues of pink out of embarrassment. Stanford found it hard to even find his clothes anywhere because Bill’s arms were all around him, stroking and embracing. Not to mention the mouth glued to the nape of his neck! He let out another gasp when he felt teeth brush his throat. It was much too soon for him to get aroused again, but it still made his spine tingle pleasantly.
“Turn your head…”
He did out of confusion but melted when Bill’s mouth met his. It felt so different from before, he swore he could somehow sense how needy the triangle felt. Maybe it was present in the crackling energy tickling against his front… Stanford closed his eyes and shifted to be able to face the demigod, reaching absentmindedly to intertwine their hands.
All of a sudden his surrounding seemed to blur into nothingness. His sight was better than ever, but nothing except for the moment the two shared was worth noticing. He felt warm and safe in Bill’s hold; those inky black digits not holding onto his ones caressed his back in a very gentle manner while keeping him close. It all felt so genuine and pure.
Once Bill trailed his forked tongue along his lips, he couldn’t help but parting them and inviting him to continue.
Oh, sinful indulgence indeed.
Even though he could pull away, Ford found that he didn't really want] to right now. It was nice to be held like he was important again. Like he mattered to the demigod. Five more minutes, then he'd deal with his sight magically repairing itself...
Opening his mouth wider he let Bill inside to meet his tongue, the saliva tickled his taste buds in a strange but pleasant way. Once Bill swirled his inky back tongue to stimulate the roof of his mouth, Ford couldn’t help quietly voicing his content state. It felt so good… It was so wrong, but it felt so right. Maybe that… Saliva was like a numbing poison of some kind? Stanford broke the kiss to inhale, breathing thickly. "Wh-what even is that?"
"Mmm?" The demon still was only half listening and instead tried to get his mouth back over the human's. Why was he so set on trying to talk all the time?
"Your saliva, it's.... sort of numbing." Ford ventured the idea slowly, not bringing up that it also was mildly... intoxicating? He wanted more of it in some horrible way, and he couldn't pinpoint the origin of the feeling.
"Sure is, cuz it’s gotta different purpose than your face drool." Bill chuckled and ran his thumb over the back of Stanford's hand. Since his pet wanted to keep talking, he'd just take a taste or two of that strong jawline. The prickly short stubble trying to grow back in on his face was an amazing texture to have beneath his lips. "What, ya think a god like me needs to eat or something? That's just for fun! It's not raw organic gunk I'm after, it's all about the energy." He could feel the hum of Stanford's soul so close by and reached metaphysically to pluck it from his body like he used to be able to do… when he encountered the sharp metal plate resting over his brain. Bill made a sound of frustration and briefly turned orange. He tightened his hold on the other’s hand. "Ugh, I HATE that thing!" The pained whine that came from Stanford calmed the triangle down a tad, and he let go of his fingers with an almost apologetic stroke. Whoops, got a bit carried away! "Seriously, you should just get rid of it. You're with us now."
He felt Ford's hesitation, but the man was far too drunk and relaxed to be overly concerned by the suggestion. "Can you really blame me, after what happened betwe― well... back then?" Bill patted down the side of his face and soon found his black hand trapped beneath Stanford's own. "Bill... you carved things onto me with that knife, not to mention the other things you did in my body."
"Think I remember… bein’ angry or something! Pretty sure." Bill said after a time, still pressing sloppy kisses to Ford's throat. The other monsters were busy playing spin-the-human, and a quick glance told him that Pyronica was having fun at someone's expense. Good. They were distracted. No one but him and his pet. "We made a deal, ya don't get to just... backward... walk outta that, not when you were so close! Coulda had this thirty years ago." He shouldn't really be mentioning this to Stanford. It was way too early in the game; that plate offered the man some way of 'protecting' himself from Bill, at least mentally, and he wasn't going to give it up easily. It'd take a lot of subtle reinforcement and coercion before he'd even consider it, probably, and that'd take a certain subtlety that Cipher didn't have after this many drinks.
"Yes, well..." A pause. "I think I'll keep it." It was an important shield for him to protect himself with. Bill couldn’t toss him out of his own body or mess up things in his mind. He didn’t feel comfortable giving that up!
"Mm, well, if that's what makes ya happy. Being lame and no fun." Bill snuggled closer, his hands buried in Ford's wonderful silver hair. They settled into a quiet moment of stroking and holding one another. "Anythin' for you, Sixer." It sounded like a dismissive statement, perhaps, but only Cipher knew how serious he was being at that moment. He just didn’t mean ‘anything you want’. No. Anything it would take. Just so long as he could keep his prize; until the end of time.
I wanna love you, but I better not touch (don't touch)
I wanna hold you, but my senses tell me to stop
I wanna kiss you, but I want it too much (too much)
I wanna taste you, but your lips are venomous poison