Chapter 3: For the sake of everyone
Jake ==> Drive Dirk’s Jeep
What did you just call this automobile? You’re not sure how the vehicles work here, or why everyone insists on driving on the wrong side of the road. And why Dirk doesn’t even have doors or a roof on his vehicle is really beyond you. No, you’d better leave the driving to Dave.
You’re not sure what happened back there. You think about it as you hold Dirk’s limp form tightly in the back seat. He’s lost a lot of blood, and quite frankly you’re worried about him. You’d best get him back to Bro as quickly as possible. Dave seems to be doing a fine job of just that, driving at reckless speeds that even Dirk didn’t attempt.
John’s saying something to Dave, glancing nervously back at you two, but you can’t for the life of you tell what he’s saying. Passed out Dirk isn’t exactly talkative either, leaving you plenty of time to your own thoughts. And oh, do they trouble you.
Damara did something to you, and you’re not sure what it was. When she kissed you it was like she paralyzed you. You couldn’t do anything. You moved, but you couldn’t help Dirk. You couldn’t help Dave. It wasn’t until John hit her with his giant hammer that whatever it was wore off. Suddenly you could move again. You could fight her. You could end her.
But somehow, despite the blasted demon vanishing into dust, you don’t think she’s really gone. You get the feeling that Damara Megido is still out there somewhere. And you would bet your favorite pistols that she’s more than willing to make good on her promise to royally mess you up.
It isn’t long before Dave pulls up to the lounge. Bro is already outside and reaching into the Jeep before Dave can even turn off the engine. He pulls Dirk out of your arms and carries him in through a back door, muttering something that sounds like “stupid… so fucking stupid…”
You follow him inside. Dave and John are close behind you. Bro allows you into his office, laying Dirk down on a worn-in looking brown couch. You hope this isn’t where the eldest Strider spends most of his nights, or in his case days, but somehow you think it might be.
“Is he going to be ok?” You ask, wincing as Bro peels the blood soaked shirt off Dirk, reopening some of his closed wounds as he rips away the blood clots. He frowns, but you think you hear him sigh in relief as Dirk’s wounds begin to close on their own.
“Yeah, he’ll scrape through. It takes more than Damara’s claws to end a Strider,” Bro responds. Though his brows furrow ever so slightly above the rim of his shades, he is otherwise completely expressionless. Curious. Isn’t he concerned about his brother at all? “He’s hurt badly though.”
Dave doesn’t need to hear any more before he’s at Bro and Dirk’s side, forcing his way in between you three. “This was my fault. It was all my fucking fault, let me—”
“No it wasn’t,” Bro snaps quickly, holding Dave back with a hand. “He didn’t listen to me, and Damara got to him. That’s not your fault. And besides,” he pauses, glancing up and down at his youngest brother. “You’re not exactly in tip-top shape yourself, lil’ man.”
“But we’ve gotta do something,” Dave says. It may be your imagination, but perhaps he’s speaking just a tad quicker than usual. Other than that, the youngest Strider doesn’t seem phased by his dying brother at all. You take a second to wonder how the Striders can be so brilliantly calculating yet heartless.
“Yeah,” Bro murmurs. He pauses for a few moments, and then sighs, “yeah we do. All of you, get out.”
“I beg your pardon?” You finally speak up.
“You heard me, English. Out,” he responds, pointing to his door. “Even you, Dave. Go grab something to eat. You’re skinny as a rail.”
“Bullshit! Dirk’s my bro too! I should be able to—” Dave’s rambling slowly simmers down as Bro levels a glare at him. Disparagingly, he sighs, “ok. Fine. But he’s really hurt, so don’t say I didn’t tell you so.”
Bro chuckles. “I think I know a thing or two about my own brother. Now out, before I lose my patience.”
* * *
Dirk ==> Wake up
Nah, sleeping is the shit. Why would you want to wake up?
* * *
Dirk ==> Get slapped
Oww! No, stop that.
* * *
Dirk ==> Get slapped again
Ok fine! You’re awake! Mother-fucking-stop!
You glare blearily around and think you vaguely recognize Bro’s form hovering over you. Oh shit, you’re in trouble now.
“You awake? Good,” Bro murmurs, then slaps you one more time. “That was for not listening to me and almost getting yourself and Dave killed.”
Your head is still reeling when you feel him tenderly collect you into a tight hug, pulling you closer to him.
“This is because you’re weak as hell,” he murmurs. He grips the back of your bloodied hair, his own silent sign that he’s really worried about you. “You’re a fucking cocky asshole, but I guess you learned from the best. Take my energy. You need it.”
Your brows furrow ever so slightly. You’re so weak that if you take enough to heal yourself—
Bro snorts, reading your thoughts. “No no, you don’t get that much. Just enough to get you going. Then there’s some yeti blood in the fridge with your name on it.”
You groan. How did you know. Knowing he can read your thoughts, you don’t attempt to talk yet, instead just thinking, “thanks Bro.”
It’s a weirdly comforting sensation, feeling someone willingly giving you their energy. You haven’t felt it since you were small, when Bro gave you his back when you were too young to get it yourself. You smile softly. You’ve missed Bro’s hugs.
You feel him smirk next to you. “Don’t get used to it.”
You sigh, sensing him syphoning his energy into you everywhere his skin is touching yours, from his fingertips when they lightly stroke your scalp, his arms that are wrapped around yours, and his cheek that is pressed against your own. All too soon, he pulls away. “All right. That should be enough lil’ man. Now you have some nummy yeti blood for dessert,” he says, using that tone he used when you were a kid.
Sometimes you really hate his mind-reading.
He comes back with a giant mega-gulp cup, like the kind you would get from the gas station down the street. With a quick glance, you realize that the cup is from the gas station down the street. Bro’s even put a colorful orange bendy straw in it for you. “Drink up.”
You make a face at the cup, but you sit up and accept it. Much as you hate this disgusting habit, you’ll need it to replace the blood Damara stole from you.
“Aw shit,” Bro curses, thumbing at his now bloodied white dress shirt. He takes it off and throws it at you. “You owe me a new shirt, kid.”
“Your fault for not taking it off in the first place,” you mutter, sparing a passing glance at the tags.
Armani Exchange. Nice. You don’t hesitate to slip your arms through the sleeves of Bro’s shirt. It’s a little big on you, but you don’t care.
You get back to sipping away at the gross blood while Bro throws on another shirt. You happen to know the guy has a whole closet full of clothes in his office with how often he spends the night here.
After he’s buttoned all but the top two buttons, Bro opens up his office door, and your three partners this evening come pouring in. John is the first to zoom into your chest, giving your clavicle a big hug. You’ve always found John’s hugs a little awkward. What are you supposed to do in return? You settle for the usual, stroking his back lightly with your index finger. “Dirk! I’m so happy you’re ok! Dave and Jake were really worried too!”
You tilt your head at Dave as he takes a seat next to you. When you raise your fist, he returns the fist bump and says, “nah man, I knew you’d pull through.”
You swear you hear Bro stifle a snort, but before you can think on it longer, Jake is kneeling beside you, grinning widely. “Glad you’re all right, Strider! I’d hate to lose my partner after only a day! I’m certain that would be a horrible new record.”
“There’ve been worse records,” Bro reassures him from where he’s returned to sorting through the papers on his desk. “But just to be sure you don’t add to them, you’re all taking the rest of the night off. Damara was the most challenging target by far. Karkat and his crew can handle the rest of them. Dirk, make sure Dave eats something.”
You finish the mega-gulp, which Bro unfortunately is all too happy to refill before you leave. Disgusting though it may be, you have to admit that you’re feeling better by the time you get to your Jeep, which Dave parked crooked in front of the station in his haste. You tisk at him, “dude, what’ve I told you? You’ve gotta respect the ride.”
“I do respect the ride yo, I ain’t makin’ this shit up, no,” Dave starts ramble/rapping again, and you decide to tune him out for the rest of the ride back to your apartment.
Jake has perked back up to his usual self, and he’s back to chattering happily about his favorite films. “—and who would have thought that Avatar could have been such a brilliant hit?! Those lush character designs, thrilling plot twists—”
Yep, you’re officially ignoring two people in your ride now. You chance a glance in the rearview mirror to find that John’s actually giggling at Dave’s rapping. It looks like he’s trying to rap back, complete with making silly gangster poses, but as usual, you can’t really hear his tiny voice over the rush of the wind.
You settle for listening to Jake continue on about his flagrantly poor taste in movies. Thankfully it isn’t too long before you’re back at your apartment.
You know that Bro wasn’t talking about left-over pancakes when he told you to feed Dave, but that’s all you’ve got the energy for right now. Honestly, you’ve seen the kid in much worse shape before, and he seems ecstatic at the chance to eat pancakes again.
It’s early, but you stumble into bed and are quickly asleep.
* * *
Dirk ==> Eat Jake’s cooking again
Ok. This evening Jake has tasty bacon and eggs waiting for you. You’re not about to pass that up.
Dave is gone by the time you get up. He probably left last night. You do worry a little bit about the kid, but you know he’ll be all right. Especially after last night. You’ve seen John fight before, and you knew that he was decent at his job. But now that you know what he’s truly capable of doing, and just how committed he is to Dave, you know your lil’ bro is safe.
Idly, you wonder how Dave feels now that John’s “made it official” between the two of them. At least in front of you. Must be nice to have someone who cares that much about him. You used to have that when Roxy was around.
You feel a small twinge of remorse over last night. You did it again. You were thinking about Roxy and it blinded you. But really, where was she? You’d have thought Damara would pull out all the stops if she could? Then again, Roxy’s absence helped Damara more than her presence probably would have.
Jake interrupts your self-pitying thoughts, serving you breakfast with a wide smile. “Good evening, Strider! I trust you’re feeling better?” He says gaily as he places a generous portion of bacon, eggs, and (–waffles? Where the hell did those come from???) –in front of you.
You could really get used to him living here. Digging into the breakfast, you murmur through a mouthful of food, “felt like shit last night.” You swallow and comment offhandedly, “I’ll feel better once I get some real food later.”
You realize your mistake as soon as you say it. A quick glance up at Jake confirms that he’s crestfallen. Quickly, you wave a hand in front of him. “Relax English, your breakfasts are the shit.” You notice that he looks very perplexed and add, “that’s a good thing. Don’t you ever stop making breakfast. It might be the first time in history a Strider cries.”
Jake rubs his chin in a thoughtful way, as he begins to put two and two together. “Wait, if you’re not talking about my breakfasts, then you don’t mean to say—”
You wait patiently to see what he’s going to say. Besides your mouth is full of waffles.
“—you’re speaking of the other thing you eat?” He asks tentatively.
Slowly, you nod.
“And that would be—” he asks, looking far more uncomfortable than you’d like. “—blood? Are you a vampire?”
You almost spit out the waffles, but instead you manage to quickly swallow them and exclaim, “No!”
His eyebrows raise in question. “That wasn’t blood in the cup Bro gave you yesterday?”
You sigh, “yeah, it was. But I’m not a vampire. I’m an incubus. I only need blood when I’m really weak or when it’s been stolen from me. It’s complicated. I actually eat—” You tilt your head forward, squinting ever so slightly from behind your shades as you think of the best way to explain this to Jake that won’t scare him away.
Eventually, you realize that there is no good way to say it, and you settle for being blunt as usual. “Sex energy.”
“I-I beg your pardon?” Jake stammers, flabbergasted.
“I can feed off another’s energy during sex, or any affectionate action,” you explain. It’s been a while since you had to describe this to anyone, and for some reason, it’s really making you feel hot under the collar.
Maybe it’s because Jake seems to be really troubled by this for some reason. Damn, you really don’t want to scare him away. You kind of like having him around.
—wait, you do?
You blink, realizing it’s true. Sure, you were staring at his ass a couple nights ago, but you chalked that up to your incubus nature and your love of a plush rump. But now you think it just might be a little more than that. You swallow away a lump in your throat as you slowly realize the truth.
You like Jake English.
And it’s only been two days. Fuck.
And now that he knows your secret, he looks positively frightened. Shit shit shit shit shit.
Jake clears his throat. “So you feed off another’s –affection, correct?”
Slowly you nod, not wanting to alarm him. Like nodding quickly would. Fuck. Why do you care about this so much?
Hesitantly, he continues, “and your Bro gave you this affection yesterday to heal you? Does that mean you two…” he trails off uncomfortably, tentatively touching the tips of his two pointer fingers together in the most awkward gesture you’ve seen in decades.
Suddenly you know why he’s acting so strange. You almost laugh in relief when you realize it. “Dude, Bro hugged me. We didn’t make out or anything.”
“Oh!” Jake exclaims. He looks visibly relieved. “I didn’t realize that was possible! The others of your kind that I have met in my travels have always done things—a different way?”
You’re starting to wonder just what Jake English has been into in the past, but you don’t question it. Instead you explain, “it’s usually easier during sex, but Bro has a lot of experience handing energy off to me ‘n Dave. A hug from him is about as good as fucking two hookers off the street.”
Which you would never do, by the way. But you do love the way your comment makes Jake blanch a bit. Maybe he’ll stop talking about this awkward subject and move on. “And just what do you eat, English?”
Jake flashes his charismatically charming grin and holds up a forkful of waffle. “Just plain old boring human food, I’m afraid!” His grin falters a bit as he asks tentatively, “do you get anything out of eating the food I cook? I mean, you can eat it, right?”
Really? Did he really just ask that? You glare at him, holding up a half-eaten piece of bacon and lay on the sarcasm. “Oh no, I’ve eaten Jake English’s human food. Whatever will I do?” When he cracks a grin, you toss the piece at him, “yes, I can eat it, you dork. I can drink the orange soda hogging half my fridge too.”
“But does it do anything for you?” he continues to probe incessantly. “I mean, I’d hate to force you to eat my cooking if it doesn’t actually help you.”
“One, you’re not forcing anything. I already told you your breakfasts are the shit.” You sigh at him and respond quickly, “And two, yes, it fills me, but not as well as sex-energy. I still need that every now and then. Any other awkward questions, English?”
Jake laughs, scratching the back of his head in that adorable way. “Sorry, Strider! I’m afraid I’m just terribly curious! I’ve never had the opportunity to actually speak to an incubus before. In the past I’ve always just—” Again, he trails off, not wanting to say the rest.
The fact that he doesn’t finish his sentence tells you enough. “You’ve killed us. It’s ok, I’ve slain many of us too. Remember what we did to Damara last night? We stop the ones that can’t control their urges, that run around fucking anything that walks, leaving behind a trail of bodies.” You imagine that happening to you and shudder at the thought. You were lucky Bro was always around to teach you what to do and where to stop. You did the same for Dave.
“Horribly sorry, I didn’t mean to bring that up,” Jake apologizes, his eyes cast down. Though you know it wasn’t your fault, you instantly feel guilty.
“Hey, it’s ok, you didn’t do anything wrong,” you reassure him by throwing another piece of half-eaten bacon at him. “It’s kind of an unspoken understanding in this business. We watch out for each other and try to bring ones that have fallen astray back. But if that isn’t possible, we end them.”
“Oh,” he responds shortly.
“But we’re not all bad,” you reassure him with a small grin. “I won’t jump your bones unless you want me to.”
What, really? Where the ever-loving fuck did that come from?
Jake doesn’t seem to think your comment was weird though, and he’s actually giggling back at you now. “Why thank you Strider! You’re such a gentleman.”
“Naturally. I know how to treat a lady,” you say with a smirk. “Now if you don’t have any other questions, breakfast is getting cold.”
Jake finally catches the hint and lets you eat the rest of your breakfast in peace.
* * *
Dirk ==> Fight some demons!
The demons of Derse must be scared shitless after what you four did to Damara last night. Bro sends you and Jake out on several missions, but the demons are a cakewalk. You take out most of the targets in 5 minutes tops.
The most challenging target is near the riverside of an abandoned factory, where mermen sent by Eridan Ampora have been taking up residence. The beach is littered with the carcasses of stray cats, rotting and decaying amongst the plastic debris. You find it both peculiar and repulsive. You’ve saved this target for last, and seeing what you’re going to have to do, you’re glad that you did.
The water is filled with toxic sludge, refuse from the populace that the corrupt City officials are too cheap to dispose of properly. It’s a shame. You remember a time when the beach was one of the City’s prized destinations. You actually got along with Eridan back then, before the waters became so contaminated that they poisoned his mind. You tried to convince him to move somewhere else, but Eridan wouldn’t have any of that. You always knew his pride would be the death of him.
Not a decade after the city began dumping waste into the waters, Eridan and his mermen began to change. And not in a good way. The brilliant luster of their scales corroded into a dark oxidized brown. Their fins and claws sharpened, taking on the toxicity of the waters and refining it into a deadly poison. You watched the sad transformation of one of your best friends as he slowly lost his sanity and degraded into nothing more than a vicious reckless predator. He cursed humanity and vowed to take down the humans who polluted his waters. Even Cronus, Eridan’s cousin, barely recognized him. Cronus had taken your advice and relocated with the help of some of your coworkers, namely Kankri.
The first time you killed Eridan, driving your katana through his heart, your stomach had clenched. You’d choked back an anguished cry over the loss of one of your best childhood friends. But you knew the dangers of this job. You knew what you would have to do if one of you went out of line.
When Eridan resurfaced again, not about to be held back in Derse, you had foolishly hoped for the best. The natural purple luster of his hair had returned, and the corrosion from before had long since fallen away. But the effect the toxic waters had on his mind was permanent. You sent him back to Derse as quickly and painlessly as possible.
Suddenly, you hear a loud splash of water, and a giant reverse cyclone surges from the water in front of you. The sludge flies all over the remnants of the beach, now covered in various colors of plastic wrap. “Wwell wwell wwell!!!! Wwhat havve wwe here???”
You frown. You had hoped to avoid a confrontation, but it looks like that won’t be possible now. Steadily, you position your katana in front of you and take a fighting stance.
“Oh Dirk!!! Wwhat’s this all about??? Aren’t you happy to see me???” Eridan grins, his torso appearing out of the water. He holds his clawed arms out to you. The light of the moon reflects off his amethyst scales and the tattered remnants of a ridiculously ironic purple waterproof cape you had given him decades ago, back when Eridan had dreamed of being a wizard. Most of the tears in the fabric are by your own blade. You have no idea why he insists on wearing it, but seeing him still cling to the fabric causes your heart to wrench.
“Eridan,” you say slowly, gauging whether or not your former-friend’s mind has returned to him. “Cronus didn’t mention that you came back.”
“Cronus Cronus, wwhat a wwindbag!” Eridan cackles, splashing the waters around him playfully. Some of the sludge hits your shirt. There’s one shirt going in the trash. “He could never understand my truest of sciences!!!”
“What do you mean?” you ask. There’s still a small chance that he’s returned to himself, but you know better than to get your hopes up. “And what’s with all the cats?”
Eridan grins widely, spreading his finned arms out beside him, “Dirk!!! I’vve finally figured it out! The wway the wwater can be used to showw evveryone the truth! Evveryone needs to drink the wwater! First the cats, then the humans, then the GALAXY!!! The wwater holds all the answwers an once evveryone drinks it they wwill understand my science too!!!”
Nope. He’s still a deranged lunatic. You sigh ever so slightly. “I’ll only say this once, Eridan. Quit it. Quit all your madness and come back to us. Live with Cronus for a while till you find your own place. Unpolluted water might clean out your mind. Then you can—”
“Fuck no!!!” Eridan screeches, cutting you off. “I’ll nevver givve up my home! NEVVER!!!!”
In one sweeping motion, he draws his hands behind him and swings them forward, sending a tidal-wave of sludge-filled water at you.
Bracing yourself, you dig your blade into the debris below you, riding out the contaminated wave of water. As the dark liquid swirls around you, you feel Eridan’s claws digging into your arms, yanking you free from the ground like he’s pulling a weed. You fall back into the waters of the river with him.
It’s a good thing you don’t have to breathe. Eridan uses his superior swimming abilities to drag you deeper into the water. He’s got fins, damn it. It’s not fair.
Speaking of unfair, you are both about the same age, but Eridan’s kind have always been more powerful than yours, for reasons you will nevver know. Ahem. Never know.
After many centuries, Bro developed the ability to read thoughts. But from a very young age, Eridan has been able to read and place thoughts in others minds.
“Dirk, stay wwith me,” Eridan’s voice pleads in your head. “Drink the wwater. Then you’ll understand. Wwe’ll showw the wworld the truth!”
You clench your teeth tightly together as he tries to pry your mouth open with his clawed hands, slicing your lips and drawing blood. You mentally growl at the wasted blood. Knowing Bro, he’s going to make you drink something nasty again later to replace it.
Determinedly, you think back, “Eridan, cut this shit out. I don’t want to have to kill you again.”
His arms still as he reads your thoughts and sends back to you, “you wwouldn’t do that again. Derse is such a dreadful place.”
“You can tell me all about it later. I swear I’ll be all ears. Just come with me,” you plead, knowing it’s likely futile. You tighten your grip on your katana, wincing a bit as he throws his arms around you, digging his claws into your shoulders. You know what this is coming down to.
For the sake of everyone, you know your friend again has to die.
“Dirk, I can’t leavve!! I havve to show everyone the truth! The cats ALMOST understand! In a feww wweeks I can start on the humans! I can’t leavve!! I can’t—”
His thoughts still as you thrust your katana behind you, slicing through his scaled body and piercing his heart. Without even looking, you know that you’ve killed your friend for the third time.
“Di—rk?” Eridan’s thought reaches you as his violet blood begins to creep into your vision. Soon you’re surrounded in it. His grip on you loosens until his arms fall from around your shoulders.
You glance back just in time to see him fade away.
Jake is seated on the shore when you emerge from the waters, but he gets to his feet immediately when he sees you. “I say, Strider! Are you all right, mate? You look a little worse for wear,” he says with concern.
You trudge up to him, shaking some of the poisonous water and Eridan’s blood off you. “Yep. Took out the leader. You?”
“Oh, I took care of the rest,” Jake says with a grin, patting a rocket-propelled grenade launcher at his side. The thing’s about as big as he is. You’re certain that he couldn’t have been carrying that thing on him, but you don’t question it. After all, where the hell does John keep his Zillyhoo?
“Good. I’m so ready to get out of here,” you grumble, realizing that you’ll need to wash the inside of your Jeep after this. Jake miraculously doesn’t have a bit of sludge on him. You, however, look like you just went for a swim in a pig-pen.
But, quite miraculously, you manage to find your shades on the shoreline. You were so distracted by Eridan’s reappearance that you hadn’t even realized that they flew off in the initial tidal wave. Black tar-like goop drips off of them when you pick them up off the remnants of a rusted Coke Zero can. Yep, those are getting washed before they go back on your face.
The thought of not wearing them for a little while does bother you a bit. You glance hesitantly in Jake’s direction, but he’s already trundling off towards the Jeep. He had to have seen your eye color earlier, but he didn’t react at all. Then again, why should he? You know he’s dealt with your kind before.
He’s probably seen eyes every color of the fucking rainbow. Why should yours be special?
Answer: they’re not. Not to supernatural beings like you. And Jake. Whatever he is.
You push these thoughts aside and focus on how dirty your car is getting as you drive it covered in filth. Despite the detour to the car wash, you’re back home early again because you and Jake neutralized all the threats in record time. You have no doubt that Dave and John have had similar luck tonight.
So, after the second shower of the night, you both cozy in on your second-hand futon. Three extra-large pizzas from the 24 hour pizza joint down the street lay open on your coffee table while you suffer through some of the movies Jake calls his “favorites.”
It isn’t long before you come to realize that Jake’s “favorites” include pretty much every movie in existence. After sitting through Transformers, Confessions of a Shopoholic, and Cinderella, you turn to him and ask, “Jake, please tell me we have been watching these movies ironically.”
“Irony? Heavens no, old chap!” Jake says, beaming. “Why, after watching Confessions of a Shopoholic the first time, I was inspired to wear a green scarf for three months!”
Somehow, you get the feeling he’s telling the truth.
The week passes in a similar manner, sans being forced to kill old friends. All too soon, you learn that Jake’s terrible taste in cinema doesn’t stop at movies. It spans TV shows too. You suffer through hours of horribly bad soap operas, reality TV shows, and “sci-fi originals.” You were beginning to have a little hope when he played the fourth season of Dr. Who, but then he switched it up with Toddlers in Tiaras.
Only one good thing came from all of that pain. It was incredibly easy to convince him to watch the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic series.
You watch with trepidation as you put on the first episode. You’re a little nervous, admittedly. What if Jake doesn’t appreciate it as much as you do? What if he hates the show you absolutely adore?
You quickly realize that you had no reason to be worried. Jake is captivated after the first minute, his eyes glued to the screen. He whoops and cheers as Twilight Sparkle meets each new pony friend. You hold your breath as Rainbow Dash comes onto the screen. What will Jake think of her?
Again, no need for concern. Jake loves her. Jake loves all the ponies. You love this about Jake.
After watching through all the episodes with you, Jake declares that it’s his new favorite TV series and buys you both My Little Pony t-shirts. You wear your Rainbow Dash shirt most un-ironically around the apartment and even to work a couple of times. Bro shakes his head at you but doesn’t say a word.
* * *
Chapter 1 Chapter 2