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spyder1070 posted this on Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:32 am | View user's profileSend private messageReply with quote

The Dreamer.

Waking with a start and rolling out of the bed. Stuart looks rapidly around the room, then drops down onto all fours and gingerly lifts the bed clothes, checking under it for any sign of the bassist. Not finding him he sits back on his heels and breathes out a huge sigh of relief. Then running his fingers through his blue hair, he grips it, trying hard to press the horrible dream images out of his head. He's been having the same dream for the last three days now. Each new episode becoming more vivid and real than the last, and it's grinding on his very last nerve. After the first one he'd thought that it may be something that he was eating before bed, so he'd thought very carefully about what it might be. But after spending some time running through it all, he'd come to the conclusion that he hadn't changed anything there and it was the usual kinds of things that he'd always eaten. Until he recalled the tin of cat food that Murdoc had tricked him into eating and simply put it down to that. After three days of the same nightmare though. He now believes that it wasn't that and isn't sure what to do about it.

“I wonder if Noo knows of something I can do to make it go away?” he mumbles while hauling himself back to his feet. Grabbing his bathrobe and slipping it on, he picks up his toilet bag and heads to his bedroom door. Carefully creeping it open and peeking out into the car park through the gap in the door. Stuart looks around for any sign of the bassist before he steps out. Instantly complaining when his bare feet touch the concrete floor, he slips back into his room and slides on his high-tops. Then without bothering to do up the laces, he makes his way out again. Taking a moment to peek around the corner at the Winnie before he opens the door. The singer is rather surprised to see that it's dark inside and it's only then that he realises that the music has been switched off. Wrinkling his nose at that in confusion and quickly heading back to his room. He checks the clock beside his bed, seeing that it's 3am and slumps his shoulders. Weighing it up and coming to the conclusion that he's far too awake to sleep now. He makes his way back to the corridor and wanders inside, passing through the lobby on his way to the communal bathroom.

Slipping off his robe and hanging it on the hook, Stuart removes his shoes and underpants, dropping them lazily on the floor and walking to the showers. Turning the tap with just a quick look over his shoulder, he shudders and moves under the warm water. Letting it rush down over his head and blocking out all the sights and sounds around him. Closing his eyes and holding his breath. He suppresses the last of the dream images and feels himself beginning to relax. Settling back against the wall and watching the water slip through his fingers like quicksilver.

On the other side of the room the door of the third stall slowly opens and Murdoc pokes his head out and looks around. He shrugs as if uninterested and steps back, retaking his seat on the closed toilet and going back to reading the pornographic magazine in his hand. Turning the page with a sneering smile, he reaches down to pick up the bottle on the floor beside him when he suddenly hears a sad sigh echoing around the room. Haltingly he hesitates for a moment, gritting his teeth in annoyance before finally picking it up and taking a big swig. Not about to let the singer spoil his recent good mood. He ruffles the magazine in annoyance and tries to focus on the naked woman on the page.

“Why did it have to be that?” Stuart's voice bounces around the stall with the bassist. Which makes the older man lift his eyes slowly from the page and grumble softly through his firmly clenched teeth. “Why not bunnies and ice cream. I like bunnies and ice cream. Oh, and puppies. Yeah, puppies would have been really nice. Why couldn't it be that instead of him. I don't wanna have Muds perving around in my head.” Murdoc sits up straight and widens his eyes at that, with his mouth slowly dropping open in absolute shock. “It's bad enough that I live with the smelly old troll. Why am I dreaming about him?” Slowly standing up and shuffling to the door, Murdoc makes his way to the corner and cranes his neck to look around it at the lanky younger man standing in the shower.

“The dirty little sod?” he whispers to himself. Completely dumbfounded at what he'd just heard and becoming more and more disgusted by it. Slowly pulling his head back and making a sick face. He then considers leaping out and scaring the guy. But after what he just heard him say, he's not entirely sure what sort of “perving around” the singer means. Tiptoeing back to the toilets and gingerly closing the door. He steps up onto the toilet lid and crouches there, not wanting to know anything at all about it. “Ack! I knew my devilishly good looks would get me into trouble one day,” he mumbles to himself with a tired sigh and once again tries to absorb himself into the pages of his porno.

Finishing his shower and turning off the water. Stuart steps out and grabs a towel from the rail, quickly drying himself off. Wrapping it around his waist and grabbing another, he dries his hair then carefully wraps it around his head, humming pleasantly while walking over to the vanity. Taking his toothbrush and paste from his toilet bag. He brushes his teeth, then rinses his mouth and removes the towel from his head. Staring at his reflection, he combs his hair then packs everything away and picking up his underpants, puts his shoes and robe back on and makes his way back to his room.

Taking a seat at the breakfast table later that morning, Stuart looks over at the door just as Noodle walks in. Remembering that he had wanted to ask her about nightmares he's about to open his mouth when he sees Russel step in after her. So deciding that it would be best to wait until they're alone, he smiles and greets them instead. Noodle smiles pleasantly at him as she passes, opening the cupboard door and taking out a bowl, she fills it with muesli then milk from the fridge before taking a seat next to him. Barely lifting her head when a low groan rattles it's way into the room from the corridor outside. Which is the usual way that the bassist announces his arrival after a long night and very little sleep. Murdoc wanders in yawning, then snaps his jaws shut with an audible click when he catches sight of the singer.

“Morning Muds,” Stuart smiles with a waggle of his spoon.

“Ergh, it's you,” he grunts back at him, taking a wide berth around the younger man and heading for his favourite spot at the end of the table furtherest from the door. Not quite understanding that, the singer raises an eyebrow.

“Um yeah. Who'd you expect it to be?” he asks, watching Noodle pour cereal into his bowl then splashing milk over it. “Thanks.” He smiles at her, then looks back at the still grumbling bassist.

“Shut up. Damn love-sick weirdo,” Murdoc growls back, lighting up a cigarette and tipping his chair onto it's back legs, resting it against the cupboard behind him and puffing smoke up towards the ceiling. Lifting his head sharply and raising his eyebrow at that. Stuart almost opens his mouth to ask what he means when he catches the evil glint in the bassist's black pupils. Realising that that might cause more trouble than he can handle at the moment. He instead closes his mouth and sucks his lips back hard, stirring the cereal around in the bowl and watching the way the milk and little shredded wheat pillows mix together.

“Who's a love-sick weirdo?” Russel asks, then immediately wishes that he hadn't.

“You, with the fridge. So when are you getting married then?” Murdoc quips back with a smirk. Rolling his eyes and huffing out, the drummer shoots an angry look over the table at him and picks up his fork.

“Man, one day that mouth of yours is gonna get you in so much trouble,” he warns the older man, pointing his fork at him almost threateningly. But the bassist waves him off with a chuckle and picks up his rum bottle. Not in the least bit interested in what Russel thinks about him.

For most of the meal after that, the band members are quiet. Each of them far too busy with their own thoughts, to engage each other in the mindless chatter that usually makes its way around the table. Murdoc is tapping away on his mobile, returning a message to someone who's answered a query that he had made that morning. More than likely in relation to some kind of dodgey deal. Russel is mentally piecing together some bits and pieces, working out a taxidermy sculpture that he's been puzzling over for the last few days. Noodle is writing mental poetry to remain calm and keep herself emotionally distant from the tension in the room. And Stuart is biting the inside of his cheek, like a nervous squirrel. Still annoyed about the dream and wondering what the bassist meant about love-sick and who it was aimed at.

Despite the fact that the older man is endlessly firing his vitriolic comments and opinions at any and often all people, that happen to be within spitting distance of him. He doesn't tend to do it without some kind of truth being involved in what he says. Even if some of it is untrue, it's laced with enough honesty to make whatever it may be, poisonous enough to hurt on the deepest level. Which is exactly why he does it that way and tends not to bother with false claims and out and out lies. This of course means that you haven't really got much to fire back at him. Those that have tried have attempted to bring him down by making derisive comments about his unhealthy lifestyle and lack of hygiene. Only to find that Murdoc is not the kind to be sensitive about it and take any of what they say to heart. At least he doesn't seem to? Stuart thinks with a small look in the older man's direction. It could be that he feels it, but keeps it to himself?

Later that day Stuart wanders into the music room and slips a cd from the shelf near the piano and opens the lid. Taking the disc out and popping it into the player. He presses play and listlessly drops down into the office chair. Lazily rolling it to and fro while listening to the music, he tries to put all thoughts of the bassist from his head. Occasionally spinning around in circles, a silly grin begins to grow on his face and for a while he forgets all about the nasty dreams that have been plaguing him. The crashing worlds of fear and confusion that spread their tendrils out and deep into his mind. Slowly pulling out one layer after another then mixing and mingling them into a cacophony of noise and desperation, that grips him in its clammy hands. Viciously tightening itself around his throat and strangling the voice from him until he can barely breathe.

Every nasty nightmare that has clawed its way into his head and shroud him in infernal darkness, seems to enjoy doing that. The harder he tries to scream and shout for help, the more choked he feels until he finally gives into it. Only managing a tiny helpless squeak that sounds more like the sort of noise that an asthmatic mouse would make, and no one could possibly hear him. Even if they were only a few feet away, he knows, because that's always the way it ends up. With his feet sinking deep into the floor as though it is made of jelly. He can feel the cold shadowy hand that is making it's way closer and closer to his back, so he struggles harder. Desperate to pull away from it and save himself from whatever nasty thoughts it has in mind. Only to find his feet slip more and more on the slippery surface. Dropping onto his knees then rolling onto his rump he turns to face the creature behind him. Looking up over the arm that he has thrown up in defence, he swallows hard with his eyes growing used to the dark. Then suddenly he sees it, the thing that has been chasing him this whole time.

“Stop!” Stuart shouts, slapping his hands up over his ears and squeezing his eyes shut, to block it all out.

“I haven't done a bloody thing to you, knob head,” Murdoc protests from behind him, having stopped short of reaching for the notebook that he had come into the room to get. Instantly spinning his chair around to face the older man, Stuart huffs out in surprise at him. Suddenly he's on his feet as if about to confront him, taking a single step forwards then coming to a stop again.

“Um no, not that. Well yeah, I mean? You did actually. Just not in here. In my dream, in my head bruv,” he tries to explain, becoming frustrated at not being able to get his message across well. “I mean-” Murdoc cuts him off with a sharp snort from his nostrils. Not at all interested in engaging the flustered younger man in a discussion about his mental difficulties. He slides the notebook from the mixing board and turns towards the door, muttering angrily under his breath as he steps from the room.

“Idiot.” Not about to let the man dismiss him that easily the singer rushes after him.

“No I'm not. You were. You were in my head doing things to me,” he squeaks, screwing his nose up in disgust. This brings the bassist to an instant halt, almost causing Stuart to crash straight into him. Stepping back out of hitting distance and gingerly raising a defensive arm as Murdoc slowly turns back around to look at him. Stuart frowns and flinches away, not quite sure what to expect.

“I was in your head?”

“Yes,” Stuart responds softly, lowering his gaze.

“Doing things to you?” Murdoc grunts, his rage building dangerously. The singer nods rapidly and flinches away again. “So you're having poofy dreams, but somehow it's my fault?”

“No I-” Curling into a protective ball when Murdoc raises his fist, Stuart yelps in terror and vainly swipes the air blindly behind him, trying to defend himself. When nothing happens he stops and slightly uncurls enough to look back at him. Seeing the man standing there silently huffing through his nostrils, but little else. So he uncurls all the way and weakly wrings his hands, not sure what else to do to make himself clear to him.

“I demand that you stop thinking about me this instant!” Murdoc snaps, shoving a finger up hard into Stuart's left nostril.

“Ow!” the singer yelps, snatching his head back in pain and pulling it out. “You poked me in the brain then, yah sod.”

“Impossible. You have to have one in the first place for me to do that,” Murdoc growls, wiping his finger on Stuart's shirt. “You're doing it again, aren't you?” he adds.

“Huh, what?” the singer asks in confusion.

“Thinking about me,” Murdoc adds with a grunt, narrowing his eyes. The singer stares blankly, then thinks about it.

“Well yeah. But-” He's suddenly struck rather hard across the side of the head and jerk away. “Ow!”

“Stop it.”

“Stop what? Why'd you hit me?” the younger man whimpers, rubbing the sore spot.

“Thinking about me,” Murdoc replies.

“But-” He's hit again. “Fu-ow! Stop hitting me!”

“Stop thinking about me then,” Murdoc responds with a half hearted shrug of indifference.

“I can't!” Stuart snaps, becoming angry. Only to be hit again. “Bloody... Why are you hitting me?” Murdoc calmly folds his arms over his chest and puffs up grandly.

“It's called aversion therapy. I'll stop when you do. Now stop thinking about me,” he announces with an evil grin.

“I can't!” Stuart shouts, stamping his foot. Only to be hit repeatedly. “I can't not think about you if you're here hitting me in the head, can I!” Murdoc stop and takes a deep breath.

“Then get out!” he roars at the singer, shoving his face close to Stuarts and staring hard into the younger man's eyes. Hesitating for just a second, the singer then turns on his heel and races from the room. Watching him leave the bassist grins coldly and dusts off his hands, then slowly makes his way out of the room and back to the Winnie to make a few notes in his notebook.

------------------------------------------------------------

Sitting in a cupboard in the cafe, Stuart sniffles then wipes his nose on the back of his sleeve. Once again the bassist has managed to make him feel small, helpless and stupid and he's tired of it. But he really doesn't know how to put an end to it without ending up beaten half to death and left on the side of the road like a bag of rubbish. Just saying that he'd like to give the guy a kicking makes him feel good. So far though, he hasn't managed to work up the courage needed to actually make this a reality. He has said it within hearing distance of him though, which was difficult but he wasn't about to let him continue to think that he was a weakling for the rest of his life. The bassist made a joke about it, not even seeming a bit bothered by the remark. Which just went to show how little the man regarded him as a person, as far as Stuart could see.

Right now isn't the time to make the kind of stand that he needs to though. Not with the bassist in the kind of mood that he's in. It would be a complete waste of time. Fortunately the singer has paid attention over the years, and he knows that by backing away and staying out of sight the man will come down again and everything will calm down. Slowly pressing the door of the cabinet open and poking his head out into the room. He quickly looks around to be sure he's alone, before he slides out and stands up, dusting himself off and creeping back to his bedroom.


Snapping his eyes open and wincing at the acrid smell of disinfectant and bleach. Instantly Stuart comes to the conclusion that he must have fallen asleep and is once again bound in the depths of his nightmare. He tries to sit up and finds that he can't. Then remembers that he's always strapped to a table and checking his wrists he sees that he is. Opening his mouth to scream he quickly closes it again, recalling that this too is a waste of time, because no one ever hears him. So instead he focuses his effort on trying to slide a hand from one of the straps. Then he can undo the other and the ones on his ankles and get away from what he knows is going to happen next. Coming to an instant stop when he hears a metallic clunk, Stuart turns and cranes his neck to look back and over in the sounds direction.

“Ah, the patient has awoken,” Murdoc purrs coldly, lifting the surgical mask up over his nose and mouth as he approaches.

“Muds stop. I don't like this game,” Stuart whimpers, still trying to ease a wrist out.

“That's Doctor Niccals to you twerp. Now shut up,” Murdoc hisses, stabbing Stuart in the forehead with a finger to force his head back down onto the metal table. Picking up a latex glove and sliding it onto his hand. The bassist makes a show of snapping it before he picks up the other and slides that on as well. Straining his legs against the straps with growing anxiety the singer groans and tries not to listen to the sounds that follow. Determined to get away this time and not let the nightmare follow its usual course.

“It's only a dream. It's only a dream. It's only a dream,” he chants over and over to himself with his eyes closed, clicking his mouth shut when the metal surgical table rolls over and clanks to a stop beside the table near his head.

“That's what you think,” Murdoc husks icily in his ear with a slow hiss. Making Stuart snap his eyes open and stare up at the older man in abject terror.


_________________
All Hail the Purple Cloud of Mystery.


 


spyder1070 posted this on Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:34 am | View user's profileSend private messageReply with quote

Tearing himself from his bed the next morning, Stuart grasps at his chest and tries to suppress the panic that has gripped him like a vice and is strangling the breath from his lungs. Closing his eyes he somehow manages to calm himself enough to take a few short breaths. Then slowly he feels his racing heart slow down and finally he can breathe again. With the vibrant images from his dreams still pulsing around in his mind he quickly checks himself for any scars or injuries that will prove either way if he had dreamed that or not. But in the end he finds nothing of great significance. So he drops back down to the mattress and slides his fingers through his spiky blue hair with an air of despondency. Fairly certain that a dream that vivid can't possibly be a dream and something had actually happened to him last night.

Recalling the smell that had surrounded him, of bleach and disinfectant, he thinks hard about it and tries to work out the other scent that was wafting about under the surface of the stronger ones. It had a familiarity about it that had made him concentrate on it and focus. Perhaps if he thinks about it and the room, then he can work out where he was and go there now. That will prove one way or the other if he's really dreaming. Leaning his weight forwards with his elbows rammed hard into his knees. Stuart covers his mouth with his hands and thinks hard about the whole scenario. Determined to work this puzzle out before nightfall tonight.

“Something wet?” he mumbles into his hands, letting his eyes flicker shut and focus completely on the smells alone. “Wet like... compost? No no, not compost. It was damp, decay.” Sitting up again and staring hard at his bedroom door. He then tries to relate it to something to help him.

“Old like a building that was locked up for a long time. No, I know. It was like when we went on tour once and Russel left that container of fried rice in the fridge. The thing went off and grew a beard. By the time we got back the whole inside of the fridge was fluffy and eww.” Smiling because he understands it now, he leans over to his side table and grabs his packet of cigarettes. “Musty mouldy smell.”

Now he can look at the room behind the powerful beam of the surgical light. Hard as it was to look beyond it, he had been able to detect shadows and shapes if he narrowed his eyes and looked through his eyelashes. Sliding a cigarette from the pack and popping it between his lips. He tries to recall some of the shapes while lighting up. His mind keeps forming a grid pattern, but he's certain that that isn't quite right. So he tosses his lighter down onto the side table again and gets to his feet. Slowly pacing out a tight circle on the floor rug, he puffs out a cloud of smoke through his nostrils and passes through it. Little eddy's form in the cloud and sweep past his arms, drifting up towards the vaulted ceiling above him, to disappear amongst the shadows like ghosts. Stopping and lifting his head he gazes almost blankly at the pill bottle next to his lamp. With the dull thump of a migraine building at his temples he knows that a handful of pills would fix it, but also dull his mind and stop the progress that he's made so far. Making a decision he shakes his head and continues pacing and thinking.

“Boxes?” he mutters, lifting a hand to his temple and massaging some of the pain away with his fingers. Drawing the shape in the air in front of his eyes he thinks harder. “Lots of boxes, but not boxes? Rectangles. Like patterns.” Stopping again he stares at his bedroom wall, drawing the shape over and over. “Tiles. Like the ones.....? Kitchen!” Grabbing his robe from the hook on the back of his door Stuart reefs it open, ignoring the icy chill of the concrete floor under his feet and quickly heading to the corridor door. Murdoc has just stepped down from his wagon and appears to be heading there himself when he spots him. Coming to an immediate stop when he sees the naked younger man marching with a large degree of purpose in his direction.

“Christ!” he yelps and almost takes a cautionary step back. His mind reeling with the thought that the singer has finally decided to take one of his dreams about him and make it a reality. Raising a fist in readiness to defend himself, the bassist grits his teeth hard. Only to see the guy turn and open the door instead and make his way down the corridor to the lobby. “Put some bloody pants on yah pillock!” Murdoc shouts through the open doorway, looking in time to see the door at the other end slam shut. Pursing his lips in annoyance at being not just startled but also ignored by the usually timid younger man. The bassist firmly marches towards it himself, determined to at least have his presence acknowledged by him in some fashion. Slamming his way into the lobby he gets to the elevator in time to see the doors close. Which makes the older man even more annoyed, so he repeatedly stabs the call button with a finger while muttering and cursing under his breath.

“Ignore me will he.”

Forcing his way out when the elevator doors open at the other end. Stuart rushes to the kitchen and skids to a halt when he gets there. Now that he sees the walls he realises that it's not the kitchen that he's thinking of. Because they're the same dirty duck egg blue, just like the ones everywhere else in the building except for...

“The bathroom!” Rushing back to the elevator and slapping the call button, he dances back and forth from one foot to the other impatiently. The second the doors open he pushes forwards, crashing directly into the angry bassist. Who sucks a shocked breath and stares hard into his black hole eyes. Not in the mood for the older man's attitude at the moment. Stuart grabs him by the shoulders and yanks him out of the little cubical. Turning with him until he's inside and the bassist is out in the hall. Then he lets go and steps back, slapping the ground floor button and muttering to himself. Not really taking any notice of the look of absolute shock on Murdoc's face, at what he'd just done to him.

“Look you I'm getting-” Murdoc is cut off by the elevator doors closing. Which sends his rage spiralling into dangerous levels, but there isn't anyone or anything here that he can vent it out on. So he punches the doors hard with a fist instead and hisses a threat that he'll tear the kid's head off later. Huffing in frustration he then turns and stomps into the kitchen, curious about what has the guy focused but not enough to spend the rest of the day chasing after him. Instead he turns his attention towards finding a bottle of rum that he can drown himself in.

Slamming open the bathroom door and staring at the walls, Stuart grins wide because they are covered in the same kinds of tiles that he was thinking of. Except the ones that he remembers weren't covered in graffiti like these ones are. So he once again drops his gaze to the floor and begins pacing again, thinking hard. Sucking the tip of one of his fingers while watching the floor move beneath his feet. He puts the two elements together and realises that it could not possibly have been the bathroom, because it doesn't smell the same way. Toilet duck and pooh, he thinks with a sigh then comes to a stop again. Blinking rapidly with a growing thought looming to fill his entire mind.

“I have seen them before. Down there, near the maintenance room. It smells like wet dirt down there,” he whispers and quickly takes off back towards the elevator.

“Yo watch it man!” Russel grunts at Stuart as he whips under his outstretched arm and past him on the way out of the room. Bringing the large man to a complete stop because he's not entirely sure what could either have happened or what may be about to follow the singer. Wincing an holding his rumbling stomach he stares at the door waiting to see if anything or Murdoc is about to slam it open. But the discomfort that he feels becomes too great. So he punches the door open with a meaty hand and holding his rear end, rushes into the room. “Damn Indian food. I knew I shouldn't have had thirds,” he mutters to himself. “But nooo. I just had to end the night with something hot and spicy, didn't I.”

“Hullo Stuart,” Noodle says to the singer as he dashes by her. She narrows her eyes and watches him skid past the elevator and hop towards the corridor door. “Stuart?” she repeats firmly.

“Hi Noo, gotta go,” Stuart calls back and slams the door open, disappearing inside. The young girl stands perfectly still, looking from the direction that he'd come from, then back down to where he'd gone. Then making a decision she takes a very deliberate step back out of the way expecting Murdoc to come bursting into the room at any second. Playing with her electronic pet while she waits. She pushes the button to feed it, then furrows her brow when Murdoc doesn't make an appearance. So she looks up again and begins wondering what had made him run away like that. Mulling it over for a few more seconds, she eventually gives up with a shrug and continues on her way to the cafe for a bottle of juice.

Rushing to the hole in the wall Stuart is about to leap inside when he realises that he's only wearing his bathrobe and nothing else. Suddenly recalling that he'd rushed by Noodle this way he blushes and groans in embarrassment. Then dashes to his bedroom door and slams his way in. Coming back out fully dressed he heads back to the hole in the wall and picks a careful path through the rubble. Stopping at the edge of the hole and gingerly looking down into it's black depths, before stepping onto the lift and pushing the button that engages the motor. Holding the railing tightly in his hands. He watches the yellow light turn and cast it's eerie glow over the walls as the singer and the lift travels downwards. Until it comes to a stop at the bottom and he climbs down. The second that he does he sees the dirty tiled walls and spits a celebratory affirmation that he was right. Then checks the radio room first for any sign of the table and medical instruments from his dreams.

Stopping at the Hell Hole room door and heaving a despondent sigh, the singer turns away and thinks carefully about what it is that he's doing. There were no sounds in the room in his dream and right now he's surrounded by it. So even though he's got the scenery right, the general ambience is off so he has to think about this again. Making his way back to the chair lift he stops next to the statue of Vlad and looks back over his shoulder. There are corridors leading off from this path that he's never travelled down. So he makes his way back and takes a left down the hall and begins trying the doors that he finds along the way.

Most of the doors are locked and the ones that aren't are stacked with wooden crates and boxes, filled with hand cream, detergent and moisturiser. The sorts of things that Murdoc is often buying and passing onto unsuspecting people for profit. Another room contains a huge crate in the middle of the floor and lots of smaller ones stacked neatly around it. Becoming curious and seeing a crowbar nearby he picks it up and makes his way over to the nearest one. Hesitating for a moment before he digs the tool into the wood and prises it open. Stuart digs through the wood fibre packing and flinches, jerking his hand back when his fingertips touch something hard and metallic.

“What the-?” digging his hand back in he slowly pulls out an assault rifle. Turning it over in his hands with a look of confusion spread over his face. He looks around at all the other boxes of a similar shape, then stops his gaze on the massive one in the middle of it all. Putting the gun back down and picking the crowbar up again. He cautiously walks up to it and with a grunt slams the crowbar into the wood and struggles to open the box up. The sound of splintering wood and nails straining from their holes echoes around the room. Until finally it comes free and the front of the box slams down onto the floor, throwing up a huge cloud of dust. Waving a hand in front of his face and coughing softly Stuart steps forwards and as the dust settles drops the crowbar to the floor with a loud clatter. Shocked at what he's looking at and not at all sure how in the world the bassist had managed to get the box down here.

“That's a canon. A um, Howitzer thingy what the army uses. What the Hell does Muds want to do with this thing?” he mumbles as he climbs into the box for a better look.

Wandering out of the room a little later, Stuart returns to his search and checks the other rooms in that section. Then turns the next corner and follows the same ritual. Until he finds a room that is completely dark, but pungent with a strong scent of disinfectant and bleach, faintly underlined with a hint of mould. Slowly walking into the room he feels the wall nearby for any sign of a light switch, flicking on the light when his hand finds one and hissing in pain when the room is suddenly flooded with strong light. Shading his eyes and flickering them open, he slowly drops his hand when it becomes easier to handle. Letting his mouth drop open in shock when he sees the metal cabinets along one wall, next to a bank of sinks and benches. And next to it a hook with a white hospital coat and a butchers apron. The singer walks towards the centre of the room and pulls on the large white sheet that is draped over something. His eyes widen as it slips down to the floor, revealing what is under it to him.

“I knew it wasn't a dream,” he whispers, gingerly stepping back from the shiny metal table.


_________________
All Hail the Purple Cloud of Mystery.


 


spyder1070 posted this on Wed Sep 11, 2013 3:26 am | View user's profileSend private messageReply with quote

“I know what you did! What you do to me every night! You nasty old troll,” Stuart shouts at the bassist, pointing an accusatory finger at him sitting there at the far end of the kitchen table. The other two band members snap their heads up from their breakfast and stare at the angry singer in astonishment. Then quickly look in the bassist's direction to see what his reaction will be. Staring silently at the singer Murdoc huffs a cloud of smoke from his nostrils. For the moment it's difficult to tell what his feelings are or if he even understood what Stuart has just accused him of. He slowly drops his chair down onto all four feet while reaching out towards the ashtray. Then butting out his cigarette he lifts his eyes to the singer and slowly his facial features begin to change. The blank emotionless expression twisting into a cold grimace. Which shows clearly that he did understand and isn't too thrilled by his suggestion. Like an old mob boss regarding a minor player that has been caught with his hand upon something that it shouldn't be. The older man then clasps his hands neatly in front of him on the table and licks his lips. Suddenly looking so calm and collected that it's almost frightening.

With the two band members staring each other down, one full of rage the other as calm and as featureless as the surface of a mirror. The silence in the room feels almost solid enough to hold in your open hands. With tension mounting with every second and Stuart looking almost as though he's about to burst a blood vessel. Russel and Noodle look rapidly from one man to another, waiting for one of them to make the next move. When suddenly a soft rumble bubbles through the air from the drummer, smashing the silence and echoing around the room. The other three band members slowly look over in his direction, watching the African American's face darken with embarrassment. He sits back in his chair slowly and looks down at his stomach then up at them again. Becoming annoyed with the look of disgust that is being fired at him and wishing that they would look somewhere else.

“It was my stomach,” he growls defensively, folding his arms over his huge chest and gruffly huffing out at them. Seeing them turn their attention back to each other he feels much better and returns to waiting for either Murdoc or Stuart to say something about the accusation.

“Now that fatso's arse has had it's say. It's my turn,” Murdoc growls softly. Rolling his eyes and his shoulders in their sockets, Russel thumps a fist down on the table.

“I said it was my stomach man,” he snarls icily at the bassist. Turning his slit eyes back to Russel, the older man lets an evil grin curl up one side of his mouth.

“Stomach, arse, what's the difference,” he purrs at him, then looks back over at Stuart. “I don't know what sort of depraved ideas you've got bouncing around in your head...”

“Really. It was my stomach Noo,” Russel appeals to the young girl next to him. She smiles at him and nods, patting his hand. Then looks back over at the bassist.

“... But I'm telling you now faggot. I haven't done a bloody thing to you,” the older man continues.

“It was some bad Indian that I ate last night. That's all,” the drummer huffs. Rolling his eyes in frustration, Murdoc snaps a look back over at the large man.

“Christ, who gives a toss about your irritable bowel! So you farted. Big whoop. If you want to go launching chemical weapons in future. Just be nice enough to at least give the rest of us a chance to don our gas masks or something. That's all I'm saying,” he growls softly, then turns back to the singer, who is looking even more annoyed that he's not getting the audience for his complaint that he had thought he might.

“That's a lie. You know it's a lie,” he snaps at Murdoc. Russel grins and nods firmly at the bassist.

“Yeah, see cracker. He believes me,” he purrs confidently. Stuart shakes his head and looks at Russel in confusion.

“No, I mean what he said about not doing anything to me,” he explains, making Russel huff out in shock.

“Oh man,” the drummer groans and bows his head in defeat.

“You tied me up on a table and stuck things in me. That's just wrong bruv. Don't matter which way you look at it,” the singer adds, looking angrily back at the bassist. This makes Noodle and Russel sharply look at each other in shock, then over at Murdoc.

“I warned you about sniffing toilet cakes before you go to bed. Now do you see why?” he groans in exasperation at the singer.

“You can joke about this all you like Muds. I've been down to that room and I know it weren't a dream...” Murdoc widens his eyes slightly. “... So why don't you just admit what you did and get it over with!?” Stuart roars at him jabbing a finger in Russel and Noodle's direction. Dropping his head forwards with a soft chuckle, Murdoc sighs in amusement and sits back in his chair.

“You mean down there right?” he rumbles throatily, bouncing his finger down in the direction of the maintenance rooms. Stuart nervously folds his arms protectively over his chest and nods rapidly. He then turns to the other two band members with a huge grin and growls softly. “He's talking about the maze of corridors and rooms. There's tonnes of them and I use them for storing stuff. When this place was a functioning crematorium, the former owners used them. I found the room where they used to prepare bodies for whatever when the dullard and I were moving boxes down there. So I showed it to the idiot and he's been having nightmares about it ever since.”

“Oh,” Noodle and Russel drawl softly. Nodding because now they understand what has happened and why the singer is behaving like this. Stuart gasps and unfolds his arms, surprised that they are accepting this without question.

“No no, that's not true. He's lying,” he mumbles, then steps towards Russel with his hand out in appeal. “Why are you letting him lie like that Russ?” Seeing that the drummer isn't accepting that what he's been through wasn't simply a vivid dream caused by seeing something that he couldn't handle. He instead turns to Noodle and appeals to her.

“Seeing a place like that would be a shock. So I do understand Stuart,” she says to him sympathetically. Stepping back with growing disbelief and frustration, the singer grips the hair at his temples tightly and shakes his head at them all.

“I'm not imagining it, I'm not imagining it,” he mutters, then turns and looks over at the bassist sitting back in his chair like a king with a huge evil smile on his face. “I'm not imagining it!” he roars at him, pulling out clumps of hair as he drags his hands back down again.

“Oh for Christ's sake dullard,” Murdoc growls impatiently, now weary of the sight of the flustered and fear stricken younger man before him. “No one is saying that you are. Yes that room is down there. Yes I took you there, I said that already. And okay, maybe telling you that I was going to snatch you in your sleep one night and remove your spleen for scientific research was going a touch too far. But Hell's bells kid. I was joking,” he explains, then slumps back as though suddenly exhausted in the chair. Russel stares at the bassist incredulously, sitting up straighter in his chair and shaking his head in disbelief.

“Damn it cracker. Well no wonder he's having nightmares man,” he snarls at the bassist. “You is one nasty piece of work, you know that.” he adds with a grunt of disgust. Murdoc rolls his head on his shoulders in disdain then suddenly snaps himself forward in the chair, slamming his fist down hard on the table, shocking all three of them into flinching.

“F.uck you fatso! I've never apologised for being myself before and I'm not about to do it now. If I'd known that he was that much of a prissy little pansy, then I wouldn't have gone so far. Maybe! Seeing the result, yeah. Maybe that would have been a good idea. Now I have to sit here and listen to his far fetched, idiotic accusations and weird dreams. So I don't need any more input from you thank you very much.”

“They ain't so far fetched man. You said you was gonna operate on his ass and that's what the cracker has been saying this whole time,” Russel snarls back.

“I haven't operated on the little shite!” Murdoc screeches.

“In his dream you damn fool!” Russel snaps, leaping to his feet and lurching forwards towards him. Murdoc blinks at him then calmly sits back in his chair.

“Just making sure that we're all clear on what did or didn't happen,” he remarks quietly and picks up his rum bottle.

Seeing that he has lost control of the situation and has been completely outflanked and checkmated by the older man. Stuart twitches and turns around, quickly making his way from the room with a groan and stepping into the corridor. The second that he steps away from the kitchen he can feel how hot he has become. So coming to a stop on shaky legs he wipes his hand across his forehead and looks down at it, surprised at how wet it is with sweat. The throb in his temples and the swimming air around his head is warning him that he's about to go down for the count, because he'd been far more interested in proving himself right and had opted not to take his medication that morning. However, he's not willing to let the bassist have yet another thing over him this morning. So he grits his teeth hard, slaps a steadying hand against the wall and takes a very firm and deliberate step forwards.

This doesn't seem to have the kind of effect that he was hoping for and a powerful wave of pain sweeps up through him and punches it's way into his forehead. Crippling the step and nearly dropping him to the floor, as another wave comes at him from the other side, congregating in the same spot and pounding backwards into the core of his brain. With a low groan he slumps forwards and slides down onto his knee. Breathing hard and wincing at the tightening band that has circled his whole head and is squeezing it like a pimple. With another wave sweeping up the back of his skull, bringing with it that cold clammy feeling that makes him feel nauseous. He continues on down until he's curled up in a foetal position, holding his skull as though he fears that it's about to be split in two.

“Muds,” he calls weakly. “Muds help.” Hearing the soft call Murdoc drops the rum bottle from his lips and looks towards the open doorway. Huffing gruffly and putting his beverage down he follows the sound and stops to look around the wall and into the corridor. Seeing the younger man shivering in pain on the floor, he grunts and steps forwards.

“Aaaoooww,” he groans when he realises what has happened. “Why the Hell do you keep doing this?” he growls and leaning down over him, he reaches down and taps the singer on the shoulder.

“Can't...” Stuart whimpers and curls tighter. Murdoc spits an angry word and calls to Russel. Ordering the large man to pick up the pain addled singer. They take Stuart back to his room and deposit him on his bed. The bassist then shoos Russel out and closes the door, walking back to the side table and opening his pill bottle. Taking a seat on the bed next to him, Murdoc pours a few pills into his hand and picks up the bottle of water. Nudging Stuart and telling him to straighten out, he drops a few pills into his mouth then helps him sit up and sip some water.

Nasty the bassist may be. But Stuart knows that by being one of his an assets, the older man will always come to his rescue, so long as it serves him to do so. It's one of the few times when he feels close to the bassist and can almost believe that they are friends. He'd like to be one and has always felt that way. However Murdoc doesn't seem remotely interested in the idea and has often done things to prove that to him. Filling Stuart with a distinct air of disappointment and confusion as to why it's such a hard thing to believe in. Their friendship. In times like this though, there is the soft and very faint suggestion of parental responsibility. Fleeting and rare as it is for him, it's just a bit more apparent when it comes to Noodle. She's a little girl though, so it's in a way to be expected. Not that Murdoc has given any hint that he's ready to be a dad to anyone. Even though it's very likely that he's fathered many over the years.

“I'm sorry Muds,” Stuart whimpers softly when he's done. Watching the soft sheen move over the surface of the older man's eyes as he gazes down at him.

“Shut up,” Murdoc replies softly and puts the glass down, then stands and walks to the door stopping to look back at him. “Light on or off?” he asks, resting his hand on the switch as he opens the door to leave.

“Off please,” Stuart sighs and rolls onto his side away from him, the sad sigh of the younger man filling the bassist's ears and sending small ripples across the muscles of his mouth. The flicker of a frown that is trying to become a smile without success.

Lying there watching the light of the Giant Pong screens dancing across the floor in the darkened room. Reflect off the surface of Stuart's black hole eyes, as he lays there quietly feeling the pain fading from his head into the dull throb that he's better able to handle. Now that he's more able to piece it together without the tension and pain racking his whole body and twisting it into something ugly. The older man's reasoning is becoming more and more plausible and he's beginning to feel quite stupid for thinking otherwise. He closes his eyes and lets his body sink down into the comfortable warmth of sleep, half chuckling at his silliness and grateful that Murdoc hadn't seen fit to beat him for making such wild accusations. Just as his body sinks even lower down a thought suddenly hits him.

“But Muds has always been good at convincing people that he's not doing something, when he is?” he mumbles, but is too tired to think any more about it at the moment. So he lets himself fall with a low comfortable sigh of relief.


_________________
All Hail the Purple Cloud of Mystery.


 


spyder1070 posted this on Fri Sep 13, 2013 9:00 am | View user's profileSend private messageReply with quote

Waking before lunch, Stuart pulls his pillow down harder into his shoulder and snuggles against it with a contented sigh. The pain in his head has now receded and overall he feels much better. For the moment he isn't really interested in going anywhere and is far too comfortable to even think about it anyway. So reaching behind him he grabs his duvet and pulls it around his body, scooting back into its warmth, until he looks like a giant blue haired sausage roll. With just a brief look up at his clock he sees that it has just gone past 11:30. Which means that he can actually catch a few more “Z's” before lunch if he can get himself back to sleep. So he closes his eyes and lets himself relax further down, trying to do just that.

With no pressing engagements and a relaxed working environment. It means that for the most part the band members can pretty much do whatever they want. On the one hand it's great, but on the other it does tend to leave them with very little to do after some time. Which is when the boredom sets in and the arguments tend to start. Where Murdoc is concerned, that also comes tinged with a fair degree of paranoia. Mostly due to his double dealings and the number of people that he's crossed over the years. One of the main reasons why he chose to remain in his wagon, rather than use one of the rooms in Kong. It will make for a quick getaway if one of those people just happen to come calling one day. Stuart worked that out fairly quickly, followed by the other two after a very short amount of time. With Murdoc it's generally a case of whatever, now lets get on with it. Which they tend to do without too much fuss. So whatever follows if they're not prepared for it, the only thing that they can pretty much guarantee is that Murdoc has already moved two steps forwards and left them for dead to clear up whatever mess has followed his wake. Oddly enough, they all seem to have accepted that. Although none of them recall taking a vote as to whether or not they actually agreed to do so?

“Meh, he'd say that we did if we asked,” Stuart grunts with a vague shrug of his shoulders.

The only person in the old studio that doesn't seem to be affected much by not having anything to occupy them, is Noodle. With all manner of electronic toys and games, it's more than likely that she'll be faced by not knowing what to play with first. With three uncles that are looking out for her welfare, she has always been spoiled for choice in that department. Two of them, Russel and himself, tend hardly ever to say no to a request. Murdoc on the other hand, does often say no but when he does give in it's more often going to completely overshadow anything that he and the drummer would have ever done. A look through her wardrobe at the unique and one off designer outfits are testament to that. Every one of those outfits the bassist himself has had made for her. Of course being one off pieces, the only way anyone else can get their hands on them is by having a copy made of the outfit. Spoiled yes, but oddly enough she hardly ever goes to either Russel or himself to ask.

He hadn't understood that at the time. Why, when she knew that he and the drummer would happily get her what she wanted, she insisted on going to Murdoc to ask him. Given that eight times out of ten, she'd be told no. That was until he asked of course. She explained that she didn't want to be a Diva, throwing tantrums because people didn't move fast enough when she ordered them to jump. Suddenly it made all the sense in the world. He and Russel are enablers and Murdoc is the discipline and control that she needs to prevent her from heading that way. It also explained why when the bassist said no, even though she pouted and stomped about a little, she has never gone to either he or Russel to get a yes. Murdoc's word she'd take as law in that respect. It is however tinged with cunning. By doing it that way, she also ensures that when the older man does say yes, he's inclined to go overboard because of all the times he'd said no before then.

“Clever really,” he mumbles with a smile. As far as their rooms are concerned, Noodles is regarded as a sanctuary. The only one who has her own ensuite, for obvious reasons. So she doesn't have to run the gauntlet and worry about privacy. Even if there are camera's around the place she-. Stuart suddenly sits bolt upright in the bed and widens his eyes.

“I can't believe I forgot all about them!” he squeaks and throws the duvet back. Even if what the bassist had said sounded plausible. His talent for talking people around to his way of thinking must be taken into account. Lifting up his T-shirt and once again checking his chest and stomach for scars or marks that will tell him if there has been something happening at night. The singer mutters to himself about being an idiot and not considering checking the security discs for proof. “They can't say I'm crazy then.”

Stretching the skin around his naval taut and leaning over as far as he can, he sees a small mark that looks a little like a pin prick and he isn't sure where it may have come from. Leaning a little more down and stretching the skin a bit more. It feels like his back is breaking, but now he is sure that it's a needle mark and it begins to make sense why he hadn't found anything before. Because he's being sneaky and doing it in places I haven't thought of looking before. He snarls mentally and slips from the bed. Now he's determined to find proof and get his other two band members on side. Of course he's fairly sure that Murdoc won't do anything lethal to him. But the idea of being experimented on doesn't sit well with him either.

Stepping from his room and pulling the door shut behind him. He hears the engine of the Geep start up and looks over in it's direction while walking over towards it. Seeing Russel and Murdoc pulling out of the parking space, he smiles and lifts a hand, pausing mid step when Russel announces they're heading to the shops and asks if he'd like them to bring him anything back. This makes things easier for him. If the bassist is out then he has the run of the whole building for a short time and is less likely to be caught out. He shakes his head and waves them goodbye, then quickly makes his way to the corridor and waits inside until he hears the screech of the large roller door as it closes. Once out in the car park again, Stuart makes his way to the security room to see if he can find the evidence that Murdoc has been doing things to him at night.

Recalling the dreams while he searches, Stuart shudders and wrinkles his nose. The pungent smells and the squeak of the leather straps on his arms and legs, mixed with the sound of the metal table that is rolling across the floor towards him. Making him cringe and not want to think about it any more. But he knows that he has to, if he's going to put a stop to it. At least if he has a better sense of it then he'll know exactly what to look for and where to focus his search. Starting from his room and maybe if possible, the so called “body preparation” room.

Murdoc had injected him in the neck with something that made it hard to stay conscious at one point. But he did remember the feeling of the scalpel on his shoulder, although he didn't feel it cut his skin. Then it suddenly comes to him that he hadn't, he'd used it to cut his shirt and underpants away. Which means that he'd been naked and fully exposed to whatever happened next. So what did happen next? He tries to remember but it's fuzzy, even though he has a strong sense of being poked and prodded. His kidneys at one point. But there's no scars. So what was he doing? Scratching his head he sighs and continues his search, taking one disc out after another and skipping through them to the time that he's fairly sure is when things occur.

“What are you doing?” a deep gravelly voice growls into his ear, scaring the singer out of the office chair and making him leap up and forwards, almost knocking the monitor off the table in front of him.

“Err, err, nothing! I was just um?” Swallowing hard at the two evilly slit eyes staring straight into his own. Stuart suddenly realises that it's Murdoc. Which is odd, because he'd gone shopping with Russel just a few moments ago. “I thought you went shopping?” he remarks flatly.

“Eh, changed my mind. I can do that you know,” the bassist responds, just as flatly. “Heh, you're trying to prove something I didn't do, aren't you?” he adds with a nod at the monitor.

“I know you did it. I have a needle mark in my belly button,” Stuart snarls, lifting his shirt and pointing it out. Murdoc leans down and stares at it.

“Right,” he grunts, standing up straight again and looking at the singer incredulously. “You found a pimple and that makes me a monster. Now I understand.” He nods slowly with a smile, then clips the singer over the ear and snatches the disc away. “I can see you're gonna keep doing this until you end up with a damn ulcer. Get out!” Jabbing a finger back towards the door, Murdoc grits his teeth hard.

“Yes boss,” Stuart mumbles in a soft and quite defeated tone of voice. Bowing his head he's about to make his way to the door as directed, when it occurs to him that that would serve the bassist far more than he would like. “No wait!” he snaps suddenly, bringing himself to a complete stop and lifting his head and firing a look of irritation straight back at the older man. “If I do that, then you'll just hide everything,” he accuses, slitting his eyes suspiciously.

Annoyed that the bassist thinks that he's such a simple minded fool, and more than tired of the constant harassment and abuse that has been heaped on him over the years. Even though he is afraid of Murdoc he knows that if he keeps letting him get away with it, then he'll never get the chance to prove to the guy that he does deserve to be taken seriously. In fact, this could be the very reason why the bassist has taken the course of action that he has and is performing weird experiments on him. Simply because he doesn't fight back and when he does pluck up the courage to, the attempt is often very small and a quite fleeting one. Staring back at the singer with almost the same amount of disgust that he can see that he's being regarded with. Murdoc spits the toothpick that he'd been chewing out over Stuart's shoulder.

“Are you that bored?!” he snarls back at him, then slaps the disc back hard into the singers chest, making him huff out. “Fine. Knock yourself out then, I really don't care what you do.” Turning on his heel he then makes his way to the door, stopping momentarily and looking back at Stuart with his shark-like eyes.

“I know what you did,” the younger man sniffs haughtily, quite determined to show him that he's not even remotely taken in by his banter this time.

“If you say so dullard. If you say so,” the bassist responds flatly. Then taking the cigarette that had been tucked behind his ear, he puts it in his mouth and lights up. Giving the singer a sly smile before he finally leaves the room. This strikes Stuart like a bolt of lightning and he gasps in shock. Looking down first at the disc in his hand then over at the others that are haphazardly strewn around the room and over the many desks within it. Slumping his shoulders with a deep sigh and dropping the disc down with the others on the desk. He then pouts sadly and buries his hands deep in the pockets of his jacket.

“I'm too late,” he mumbles and walks towards the door himself. Fairly certain what that last look that Murdoc had fired at him was about and that he had gone and done his usual thing of thinking ahead of time. Either by removing or altering the evidence, so that it can't be proven that he had actually committed the acts that he has been accused of. Stuart is then struck by another thought.

“Hang on? If he doesn't care, then why did he follow me here then?” he asks himself and sucks the tip of a finger while he thinks about it. “Maybe he didn't move the proof after all? I mean, the arsehole thinks I'm stupid. So maybe he didn't think he'd need to, cause he thought that I wouldn't think of looking here. If he didn't care, then he would have gone shopping with Russ. But now that I've been accusing him of stuff, he's gotten all nervous and that. That's why he didn't go anywhere. That's why he followed me here to check and that's why he intimidated me just then. Because I'm here and I'm close to finding what I need to prove to Noo and Russ just how evil the guy actually is. So it is here after all. He just wants me to give up.” Quickly walking back to the desk with renewed confidence and determination. Stuart retakes his seat and picks up the disc again. Loading it into the computer he makes himself comfortable before fixing his gaze firmly on the screen. Completely focused on finding the truth and showing the bassist that he was wrong and shouldn't have underestimated his level of determination.

An hour later, the sheer single mindedness that he had started with has faded. The singer is now slumped over the desk with his elbows planted firmly upon its surface and his chin is resting deeply in his upturned palms. Blinking slowly at the flickering screen in front of him and drumming his fingers on his cheekbones. He yawns in boredom and smacks his lips, letting his eyelids droop until they're almost closed. Groaning at the enormity of the task that he has taken on, he sits up straighter in the chair and rolls his shoulders in their sockets. Trying to shake off his diminishing enthusiasm and build it back up again, so that he can complete his search. But after a few moments more it's obvious that it's just too big for him. Especially since none of the discs have been marked with the date and they are scattered around the room in no particular order.

“Awww, it's not fair,” he groans in disdain and drops his forehead down on the desk. Slipping his hands up to the back of his head and interlacing the fingers tightly, with a soft, agony filled moan of disappointment. “Why does it have to be so hard? I know what he did and he knows what he did. So why won't the old bugger just admit it, so that I can go off and do something else?”

Sniffling he lifts his head up slightly until his chin is resting on the cool surface of the desk. With the light from the screen now glinting off the surface of his black hole eyes. Huffing through his nostrils he lets his hands slip down from his head, until they are hanging listlessly either side of him. Akin to a puppet that has just had it's strings cut. He then continues to look at the screen, although he's no longer taking the images in. Somehow hoping that either the footage that he's looking for will magically appear before him. Or, much more unlikely, that Murdoc will come back and simply tell him the truth.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Much later, Murdoc is in his wagon lying on his back with his foot resting against the side table at the opposite end of his bed. Lazily tapping the toe of his boot against the wall of the wardrobe, in a soft rhythmical thump of mental hyperactivity. He flicks through a magazine that he has just collected from the lobby desk. Something he had ordered a few days ago to give him a few ideas about bass guitars that he might like to buy for himself. Every now and then as he gazes at the pictures. A throaty growl escapes and he squeezes his thighs together in an attempt to quell some of his excess excitement. Suddenly there is a rap at his door that actually startles him into sitting up.

“Muds, can we talk?” the singers voice calls from outside. Making the bassist slump in despair, then curl a lip in annoyance and shake a fist in his direction. Butting out in the already overfull ashtray and sliding from the bed. He makes his way to the door and slams it open, trying to scare the singer. His absolute lack of reaction warns the bassist that either the younger man is far to sleepy to have noticed, or worst still, is over loaded and on the verge of becoming permanently desensitised. Which will spoil his fun.

“What about? And it better not be more accusations,” he warns, leaning his weight against the door frame and crossing his ankles.

“Truth,” Stuart remarks flatly, not even bothering to look up at him.

“You can't handle the truth,” the bassist jokes with a snort, then stops and thinks about that carefully. “Literally, taking recent events into account,” he then adds with a vague shrug of his shoulders. Stepping down and planting his rump down on the floor in the doorway, he gazes up into the younger man's face until he lifts his head.

“But is what you said the truth, really?” Stuart asks him. “I might not know everything about you. But I know enough to know not to take everything that comes out of your mouth as gospel.” Regarding the younger man carefully for a moment, Murdoc huffs out aggressively at that.

“Wash your mouth out!” he snarls and reclines back on his arms with his hands pressed down flat against the floor. “Do you wanna know what your problem really is?” he then asks. The singer sucks a sharp breath and holds it, nodding affirmatively.

“Yes,” he squeaks breathlessly.

“You're so used to me stuffing you about, that when something awful happens I'm automatically the first person you look at and blame. Even if I didn't do a thing. Which is exactly what you've done and I can prove it.” Instantly leaping up and at the guy, Murdoc watches Stuart yelp and flinch into a tight ball, holding his arms over his head protectively. Stuart slowly uncurls when nothing happens and sees the bassist standing there calmly waiting for him. “See. Didn't touch you then, did I?” he grunts and steps back up into the “Winnie.”

“But-?”

“For Christ's sake. I haven't done a damn thing. I already explained what happened. Why is it my fault that you've gone and twisted it into some weird blue haired conspiracy against your person or some crap?” Murdoc groans and softly bangs his head against the door frame. Stuart sighs and thinks about that and what Murdoc had done to prove that indeed he does tend to expect the worst when it comes to him.

“S'pose,” he mumbles and turns on his heel. “Sorry,” he then adds and makes his way back to his room. “Promise that's all it is?” he suddenly asks, turning back again. The muscles at the corners of the bassist's mouth twitch nervously before he finally answers.

“Yeah sure. Whatever rocks your boat.” He watches the singer smile and walk away, before he slams his door closed and pulls his mobile from his back pocket. Dialling a number while walking back down towards his bed, he flops down on the mattress, waiting for the person at the other end to pick up.

“Eddie you old sod. How are you?... Yeah yeah, great. Um, about that biological material you wanted. How much were you offering again?... Really, that much hey. Well have I got good news for you....”


The End.


_________________
All Hail the Purple Cloud of Mystery.




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