[center Sirens sound in the distance. Horns blare. Stoplights flicker, dim in the coming dark. People rush by on the sidewalks while cars cruise by, rumbling over dry pavement. The world is at peace.]
[center And yet it is not. A dark power crushes close, insinuating itself among humankind secretly. Velveteen claws are curled into places of security and power, sheathed only until they can strike once and decisively. Every institution has been infiltrated. The intruders are everywhere, hidden in plain sight. Until the claws are unsheathed and the trap snapped shut, even the infiltrators do not know what they are. Human in appearance, human in nature, in every way, from memory to appearance, a perfect replica of those whom they have replaced. ]
[center There is no secret organization to oppose them. There is no resistance to be had against that which does not exist. Those who discover the truth cast their eyes aside and claim they did not see, for to admit to have seen such horror is to admit insanity. ]
[center Their patience is boundless. They have waited for generations, for millennia, watched humanity claw its way towards the unknowable beyond, but now their waiting is almost done. The coil bends, the pressure plate dips, the spring is compressed. And when the trap is sprung, nothing will be left of this Earth but ash.]
The black goat's thousand young are among us, perfectly disguised, preparing their final assault upon the Earth. When the thousandth child arrives, then will their disguises be cast aside and Earth's dominion shall be transferred to those beyond human understanding.
We play a pair of humans who have been upset from their homes by imposters who are, impossibly, identical to themselves in every way, down to the very memories. My character has been displaced for some time, while yours has only just been replaced. In this time of confusion, your character finds themselves drawn to mine, and mine offers yours guidance, hope, and a way to fight. So long as all thousand are not on earth, the trap remains unshut. And we two are the only two who know, the only two who can oppose them.
I want this roleplay to be dark and mature-themed. The black goat's young cannot be told from ordinary mortal humans until after a vital blow has been struck. There will be paranoia, fear, uncertainty, and surest of all, death. This is a long, hard battle with no certain outcome, where anyone and anything might turn against us at any moment. This roleplay is strongly influenced by Lovecraft, as you might have guessed from the title. The black goat's young are beings that defy human understanding, but they can be killed, or at least sent back to the dark realm from which they come. Romance is not necessary, but I would prefer a heterosexual or mxm relationship, if you desire it. I am very much open to any suggestions you might have as to where the plot might go.
Feel free to ask questions. Please pm me the skeleton below once you are ready to apply. This is not first come, first serve.
[center [b Name: // Age: // Gender: // Personality: // Bio: // Physical description: // Picture: (illustrated) // Sample post:]]
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Maybe he would see Landon from time to time? But it wouldn't be Landon. It'd be close, but not the same. But wasn't it true for Daniel? He hadn't been fixed for long enough for Bell to tell anything, but Daniel should be different, too. He was Daniel and Landon and both of them and neither. It was--well, he didn't know. He didn't know what to think. Whether to be scared or happy, excited or sad or what. A part of him was mourning Landon, but shouldn't it mourn Daniel as well? Because he'd changed, too.
He nodded and sighed, getting Daniel to eat another spoonful. A new balance, huh? Yeah, and the old one hadn't been that great, honestly, had it? Landon had been so touchy about who held who, and then he'd decided not to choose and hurt everyone, and it'd only been Bell's pigheadedness that'd kept him from being influenced by the hurt in Landon's eyes and going back to choosing only Landon. At least now he didn't have to choose. But at the same time, he felt like he might not know the man before him, and it scared him.
Bell glanced up, a small smile managing its way to his lips. Yeah, that was right. Daniel loved him, no matter if he was the same on the inside or not. And then whatever else he was going to say was rudely interrupted as the door was yanked open. Bell jumped, startled, and hit his head on the roof of the car; the fruit almost spilled from the spoon, and he ate it in a moment's lack of thought to keep it from falling out. Ah, dammit, that was supposed to be for Daniel--but whatever, he was hungry too.
Bell shoved Spot out of the way. Damn, the dog could be annoying. Almost made him want the human back. "It's fine, it's fine," he grumbled. It was enough touchy-feely stuff for now, anyways. Cat had tight hold on a bag of food, and he peered at it as he distractedly fed Daniel a little more fruit. "What'd you get?" he asked.
Honestly, he was glad for the distraction. It was better than circling on his thoughts forever and getting too caught up in himself. Daniel was here, and he was better, and that was what mattered. That was what mattered, right?
Daniel glared at Bell-boy, but honestly, he couldn't be mad. He needed food and Bell-boy was feeding him. Seemed like a good arrangement he didn't want to upset at the moment. An explosion of sugar burst out across his tongue and Daniel realized how much his body needed sustenance. Chewing was still a chore, though.
'It's okay'. Only it wasn't.
Gone already, had he? Daniel looked at Bell-boy's expression and softened a little. He was taking it hard.
"Lenny's always only been a facet of me," Daniel ventured. "Maybe you'll see him, when I feel like Lenny," he comforted. Because that's what they'd been: a split personality and without the split, there was only one of them, or both of them. Or whatever that entailed.
"Just need to find a new balance," he said, for both of them. Daniel would need to find a balance too. Now that he knew what'd been real and what hadn't been, a lot of his clear-cut memories weren't as clear no more.
Sure, they were still all there and sharply engraved on his immaculate memory, but he knew the truth of what happened now.
It turned a lot of his life upside-down.
Not so much him and Bell-boy though. They'd mainly been true.
Yeah, he needed to eat a little more.
Daniel wanted to lift his hand, pull Bell-boy close, tell him it'd be fine, that they still loved the same. That things would be easier now, but honestly. Daniel didn't know if things would be easier.
"Bell? I still love you," Daniel managed at last.
At least that much was true without question.
The door opened. Cat was out of breath as she plied herself in the passenger's seat and Spot crawled all over her to try and get to the back where Daniel was now awake.
"Oh, hey," Cat said, hair wild. "You're up! Good, hi, oh...sorry," she said a lot softer when Daniel scrunched up his face.
"Did I interrupt something?" Cat chased, a keen look in her eyes. "...I can come back?" She was carrying another bag. This time filled with food. A stray like her got good stuff for begging outside of supermarkets. There was loads of fresh produce as well. Not that she was sure how they'd go about preparing a salad, but hey. Never look a gifted horse in the mouth or whatever.
Daniel didn't seem pleased at the prospect of being spoonfed, but neither did he fight it, and honestly? The man couldn't sit up or hold a bottle right now, so how did he think he was going to feed himself? Fruit wasn't water, he'd make a sticky mess of himself if he spilled it all over the place like he'd been doing. Bell located his spoon at last and gave it a quick wipedown. Okay, here went nothing. "Here comes the airplane," he joked, still amused by it.
Landon was gone. He fed Daniel the fruit and got another spoonful, then waited while he chewed, quiet. It was different to be told it as truth rather than conceptualize it as 'what could be.' Landon was gone. He'd never meet Landon again. Somewhere inside of him went cold; it felt like his heart stopped for a beat. Gone. "It's okay," he heard himself saying, voice even. "It's not like he was really here for the last few weeks anyways. And it wasn't going to get better. He wasn't going to come back. It's better to have one of you around."
Who was he trying to convince? Himself? Daniel seemed fine. His nose ached, tears trying to slide past to his eyes, and he gave it an angry rub. He'd talked Daniel into this. It was fine. It was what they'd wanted. What they'd needed. It was fine.
But Landon was the one he'd loved first, and the first one he'd really loved like that. Felt alone? Daniel's eyes were closed, so Bell nodded. It did. Daniel was right there, but it felt lonely, somehow. He still remembered the relief that had come when Daniel had swapped back to Landon, the fear that Daniel might destroy Landon--and it had come to fruition in the end. He should have seen Landon, one last time. Even if he wouldn't have known it was Bell, even if the cure might have degraded. It would've... it would've felt like closure. Now--now he didn't know. Now Landon was gone, and he hadn't even had the chance to say goodbye. Stupid. He'd been stupid.
"A little more fruit?" he offered cheerily, holding the spoon out. Couldn't let Daniel know what he was thinking. He'd only get angry.
No. He hadn't been stupid. There was no point bringing Landon out to just be delusional, to just suffer more. It really hadn't been Landon lately, not for longer than bare minutes at a time. And Landon had been seeking medicine, right? He'd been trying to fix himself, and Bell had done it for him. This was the right choice.
So why did it feel so wrong?
"It did som'thing," Daniel muttered. Not sure it'd been cured. Just the dreaded silence was any clue his brains didn't operate quite the way he was used to, for better or for worse. Another bottle of water materialized in his hands and Daniel drank it in quite the same manner, though tried spilling less this time.
Food would probably be good. Daniel hummed, not quite sure that being fed was the way he wanted to go about getting food inside of him.
Cat was walking 'the dog'? Right. Very plausible. Daniel bet Cat was up to no good again. That seemed to be the case every single time they were out for the count. and them always moving about was a nice excuse to take a little more risk.
Sitting up was new. Daniel was pretty useless at it, resting against the seat as if his muscles couldn't quite retain any tension yet. His heart thundered wildly to accommodate the change in position, but he got used to it. No worse than trying to walk while he couldn't.
A yawn escaped him.
Really? Bell-boy was having too much fun with this.
Then again, the guy had always liked being the dominant one, hadn't he?
At least it was fruit and not tuna.
Daniel couldn't keep his eyes open for long. He was too tired to exert himself like that and the light was pretty much blinding, even in the shady comfort of the truck. Feeding himself wasn't really going to happen. Drinking had stopped, because lifting the bottle that far up seemed like way too much effort at the moment. He wasn't that thirsty no more anyway.
"Lenny's gone," Daniel confessed while Bell-boy searched around for a spoon.
Daniel wasn't certain, it was just a feeling, but for some reason Daniel knew it was the truth the moment he said it out loud.
He felt sad, but the realization hadn't been made real yet.
"'m sorry," he mumbled. What else was there to say? 'Hope you can love me instead?' but that was already true. To a certain extent. And like Bell-boy said, it was better to have one of them than neither. Good thing they were alone for a bit.
"Feels alone," Daniel sighed. Silent and alone.
He'd have to get used to that. Nothing to fall back on.
Daniel more spilled the water in the direction of his mouth than lifted the bottle and drank from it, but he seemed more mobile than earlier, which Bell took as a good sign. Daniel closed his eyes again, needing a rest after that small success, and Bell petted his hair back. It was okay, it was all okay. Daniel wasn't feeling good, but he'd get better.
Wouldn't--so Daniel did remember. Bell's face lit up with a smile, and he kissed Daniel again, just gently. Good. It would've been the worst to have Daniel forget him.
It was quiet. They were all tucked away deep in the forest where the only sounds were wildlife, and those were muted by the body of the truck. Like this, it was easy to imagine that they were the only two people in the whole world, like the rest of the world was cut off from them. Oh--in his head? Bell raised his eyebrows. Was that a good sign? It was probably a good sign. "So the goatling cured it," he said, somewhat amazed. Somehow, it'd all worked out. It wasn't as though he'd doubted that goats could cure it, but that he'd doubted whether the goatling would, goats tending to like their poetry and all. But that was good.
More? He reached around behind him and located another water bottle, replacing the empty one in Daniel's hands with the new one. "Want me to feed you?" he offered, sitting up a bit at last. Couldn't lay there forever. And besides, he was hungry, and he had to imagine Daniel was hungry as well.
Spot and Cat? His brow furrowed, and he looked around, sitting up fully at last. "Uh... good question," he said, frowning. All he saw were trees. "Maybe she's just out walking the dog." There had been hunters, sure, but they'd killed them and thrown them off pretty good, by his estimation. And, well, he wasn't exactly annoyed to find himself suddenly having a little unexpected alone time with Daniel.
"They'll be back," he said dismissively, and reached for one of the cans rolling around on the floor. He plied Daniel to sit up, bracing him against the car seat, then opened the can. Looked like some kind of nasty fruit salad... well, whatever. "Say ahhh," he joked, fishing in his jacket for a spoon to use.
Adorable. A sleepy Bell-boy was an adorable one.
Falling back asleep, was he? Daniel managed a smile, watching Bell-boy's face relax for just a few rare moment before dreams plagued the man back to the waking world. A smile smoothed over the distress.
It was still loud. Bell-boy's voice. He was nursing the mother of all headaches to begin with, but it seemed sensory input aggravated the pain. Kiss felt good though. Water would be nice too. Daniel nodded a little, too weary to find a voice for now.
Well, time to put his strength to the test.
Daniel half rested the water on his chest, then tipped it so water spilled out. Cool, nice, refreshing water. Even if it was tepid from lying around the truck.
Before he knew it the bottle was light enough for even him to lift.
"Feel like shit," Daniel said honestly. Trying to cover it up seemed ridiculous. He'd needed help taking a piss, how well did he seem? Bell-boy already knew the answers. Daniel rested his eyes.
He snorted. It'd be kind of awkward being intimate with another guy he didn't remember like this. Kind of kinky too, definitely something he'd do.
"Wouldn't cheat on you, Bell-boy," Daniel slurred, eyes still closed.
He took a deep breath, "'s quiet," Daniel pointed out. Except for where they were talking and he could hear the rustling of trees, the chirping of birds and whatnot. It was all louder than life. Sharper to look at, though Daniel hadn't exactly managed to keep his eyes open for long enough to feel overwhelmed on that front.
"Quiet in my head," he explained.
"Life's pretty fucking loud though," Daniel managed. The water definitely made him feel a lot less drained. "More?" he lifted the bottle a little to indicate what he wanted more off, though kisses would be good too.
And then some more sleep. Or food. Food would be sweet too. Probably needed that more than anything. His leg hadn't fully healed and the goatling had done something to fix his head, which didn't surprise Daniel felt like it'd sapped the life out of him.
"Where's Spot, 'n Cat?" They'd been there before, hadn't they? Not that he minded some alone time with Bell-boy.
Spot tilted his head at Cat as she spoke, then yawned and started panting. When she picked up a stick, though, he wagged his tail and barked, bouncing up at her in an attempt to get the stick. When that failed, he danced around her feet, tail wagging, eyes trained on the stick, the truck completely forgotten. Fetch! He liked fetch.
Bell felt fingers in his hair and stirred, stretching out in his sleep and shifting to a new position. After a few seconds passed, his expression contorted, face screwing up into a wide yawn, and he opened his eyes slowly, blinking a few times lazily as he took in the world. There was Daniel, laying right beside him, and--and he was awake, and everything was alright again. He made a small noise of contentment and snuggled in closer, hiding his face in Daniel's chest.
It was so comfy laying there in Daniel's arms that he dozed off again, eyes fluttering shut. Dreams like reality took reality's place; there was no Daniel, he was alone and he'd never see Daniel again. Bell twitched and fought his way back awake, opened his eyes and found Daniel, and smiled all over again. "Missed you," he mumbled lazily, closing his eyes again. The feeling that he should probably explain more took over, and he yawned and stretched, forcing himself into wakefulness. "Were only out for a day, though. A night." Relatively short, given the five months the goat had needed to restore his memories. Maybe it'd learned from that experience, applied what it had learned to Daniel... or maybe to a goat, curing schizophrenia was a walk in the park. Who knew?
He watched Daniel for a second, then leaned in for a kiss. "Thirsty?" he asked, groping on the floor behind him for a water bottle. One came to hand after a moment or two, and he uncapped it to take a swig, then passed it to Daniel. He didn't bother sitting up to drink; at this point, water would be the least of the stains on these chairs.
Daniel seemed more with it, though, just in general. "Feeling better?" he asked, watching Daniel carefully. Actually, for that matter, was this even the Daniel he knew? His blood ran cold with fear. Maybe he should've have kissed him. Or slept so close. "Uhm, you...do you remember me?" he asked, nervous despite himself. He'd seemed to last night, but he hadn't exactly been with it, either.
Cat almost jumped. Spot's cold nose pressed against the palm of her hand surprised her. "Oh, hey," Cat muttered, uncertain now. Did he still understand human language? Sometimes the dog did appear to be too clever, but there were pretty clever dogs out there so Cat hadn't thought anything of it. Now, she wasn't so sure. There was something of another Bellwether inside this Spot-shaped dog.
And it was jealous of what Daniel and Bellwether had, with right. She suspected they both loved Daniel the same way.
Weird. Everything about these people -dog- was weird.
"Bet it's easier being a dog," Cat sighed out. She petted Spot's fur, but didn't let the mutt push her back.
"Ugh, leave them, they're only sleeping -it's boring. Besides, you don't really want to sit there to watch them all cosied up, do you?" she questioned. Maybe it would've been better if Spot was still a human. He could've driven the truck. Bell seemed to hate driving though, so maybe Spot did too. Explained a lot.
Cat picked up a stick and wiggled it to distracted Spot from trying to herd her back to the truck.
"Let's play a little, huh? Explore?" Might find some nice place to eat when the boys woke up. Or find a cheap motel, or a general direction they could go to. She'd be safe. She had Spot with her -which was the equivalent of having a Bellwether.
Hunger woke Daniel.
His stomach felt like it was eating itself. Thirst was a good second however. Opening his eyes brought about a nice image of the truck and Bell-boy.
They were safe. It was quiet. This was kind of nice.
Daniel reached out for Bell-boy and this time his hand wasn't as sluggish, though still slow and meek. If someone asked him to hold something, Daniel was pretty sure he'd fail the task.
He rested his arm on Bell-boy's shoulder and stroked the other man's hair, then rubbed away some of the blood stuck to Bell-boy's cheek. The hunters.
Bell had mentioned something like that when he'd woken up before.
There was bound to be water in the truck. Somewhere. Getting some sounded like an insurmountable task. Waking Bell-boy just seemed cruel, so he waited. Daniel waited and listened to the silence.
Before Bell could even decide if Daniel's hum was a yes or a no, Spot was already leaping at the chance to feel him up. When Daniel didn't seem to protest, Bell simply averted his eyes and let Spot take care of things. He was too tired to care right now. The sooner they got back to the car and back to sleep, the better.
The walk back to the car was short, thankfully. Bell's gut was starting to ache, protesting being moved so much while he was still healing. Daniel was already asleep before they got him back in the car; Bell chuckled at that. That tired, huh? With Spot's help, he got Daniel back in the backseat--on the seat this time, and not sprawled over the floor--then climbed in after him. Backseat was tight with two men, but he made it work. He glanced back at Spot. "You gonna stay human?" he asked.
Spot shook his head. "Too much work," he sighed. And who knew what kind of state Daniel would be in. Probably not one where he'd consider a threesome, was the point. "Besides, I think I'm bothering Cat." He nodded at the girl, who was wandering the woods aimlessly at the moment.
"Good. Don't wanna waste good dog food," Bell sighed, already halfway back to sleep. He closed his eyes and snuggled closer to Daniel, happy to have him back.
Spot watched Daniel and the other Bell sleep for a moment, then closed the door behind them. Too bad he couldn't have that kind of happiness. There was always the dating scene, but...usually the whole homeless thing scared other men away, and the ones who were the same as him were...well, bottom of the barrel. He glanced at Cat, then changed, whole body squirming, muscles squelching, bones cracking; it was painful, unpleasant and odd in a way he could never get used to, but then things were simple again.
He trotted over to Cat and gave her a sniff hello, then nudged her back towards the car. His dog brain didn't know much, but he knew that all the humans belonged together, nice and neat and categorized away. The other two were in the car, so this one went in the car, too.
No leg? One leg at least. Oh, the blood. Not as if it'd been his choice to get driven around like that. His gut still ached, his leg was still feeble. Couldn't have been long since he'd been brain-scrambled.
Daniel had already exhausted himself by saying the things that were useless, so he just sighed. Useless, huh? He'd like to see them after having their brains rearranged. Wait, he had. At least Bell-boy. But Bell-goat had completely rearranged Bell-boy.
The hunters were already dead? Good.
He was getting somewhat used to the loudness of everything. Slowly, but surely, the crude way humans communicated started to become commonplace again. Bell-boy carefully lifted him and though Daniel tried to help, he was mostly just a listless sack of meat.
There was no helping it; his limbs barely listened to commands and when they did it was a sluggish, meek response. Daniel kind of hoped it'd get better with a little time, like the hearing.
Between Spot and Bell-boy he was sort of propped upright. Daniel tried to walk, but his bum leg just sagged underneath him instantly whenever he did manage to drag it to the right position on the correct time, and the other was sort of slow catching up.
He was light-headed by the time they arrived at some nice trees, accompanied by a sort of nausea-hunger.
He couldn't even stay awake properly.
Daniel hummed something of a no, resting his head against Bell-boy's shoulder as he sagged in their hold. Who knew assisted walking could be this exhausting? Figuring out the finer movements was too much for now.
It was Spot who took his opportunity to feel him up. Daniel watched through narrow slits how the other went about helping him, a nice blush on his face.
This was sort of embarrassing though, funny too. Kind of kinky.
Daniel didn't really care. They'd held him there more times than he could imagine. No big deal. As long as he could relieve himself, Daniel felt he could continue dying in peace. Like a good little boy, Spot helped him get his business done and tidied up afterwards.
Daniel felt ready to pass out.
He probably ought to stay awake for another while, try and drink some water, but screw that. Wedged between two Bellwethers, Daniel felt safe enough to just let himself drift off again. He didn't really have much of a choice either. His body was done.
Ruining the leather? Was that really the first thing Daniel was going to say? He snorted and shook his head, overjoyed that Daniel was speaking at all, even if he was being annoying. "Yeah, yeah," he said, grinning. "Like you've got a leg to stand on."
Need to take a leak? He glanced at Cat, remembering her comment about diapers earlier. Yeah...he could imagine. Actually, how did that work when he was in the egg? He considered it for a moment, then decided that he was probably better off not thinking about that too hard. "Alright then, let's get you outside," he said, stretching himself out in preparation to lift Daniel out of the car.
Daniel was glaring at the blood on his arm. Bell almost laughed. Cat said it before he did, but Daniel really did not look like a formidable opponent right now. "First, let's conquer taking a piss," he chuckled. "You'd have a hard time killing them anyways, because they're already dead."
He wiggled to the end of the chair and climbed out of the car, then reached back in and took hold of Daniel, lifting him carefully, supporting his back and neck, then pushing his weight forward so he could take it on and get Daniel into a decent carry position. "Shit, you're heavy," he complained, grunting as he carried Daniel out of the car. Or maybe he was just hungry. And tired. Okay, he was definitely both of those, too, but he was pretty sure Daniel was also heavy.
"Need help?" Spot asked. Somewhere in the interim between Bell climbing out of the car and picking up Daniel when Bell wasn't looking, he'd exited the car and was now hovering awkwardly.
"Um...sure," Bell said, after a moment's consideration. He rearranged Daniel so he was holding him up from under one arm and supporting half the man's weight, and Spot took on the other half. Together, they walked Daniel towards the woods, away from Cat. "Can you manage the zipper?" Bell asked, not sure how much they'd need to do for him. Be awkward to do something like that if it wasn't necessary. Awkward and embarrassing.
Bell-boy was there, above him somehow. It was weird, but a relief. Despite feeling like warmed up shit, Daniel tried his hand at a lazy smile and almost managed to fall straight back to sleep. Being awake was just about as taxing as moving. Just about.
He could barely make out what Bell-boy was saying. A hand gently brushed his hair back, though the sensations felt exaggerated. Still felt alright. New. Like his skin was new. Like his hair was.
Spot was there. The two talked. Hunters? Something about hunters. Daniel drifted for a second, eyes closed, listening to the others talk. He was fine on the bottom of the truck.
Except for where he wasn't and Daniel knew he'd need help doing anything.
'Sorry'. Daniel looked back up at Bell-boy at the word.
Want? Water? Yeah, he was kind of parched. Hungry too. Needed to take a leak worse though, but moving seemed like so much effort right then.
Everything seemed a little bit much.
Like his brain wasn't accustomed to accepting the input from his body yet. Only one way to help it along though and that was by doing.
Daniel gathered the will to actually speak his desire and then noticed the blood on Bell-boy's clothes. He narrowed his eyes, giving Bell a suspicious look. So that's where the scent of copper came from.
"You're ruining the leather," Daniel mumbled softly, voice barely above a breath.
"Need to take a leak," he said, then closed his eyes again. A break. He just needed a short break before he could continue and figure out how to operate everything at once.
Hunters. Hunters did that to Bell-boy while he slept.
"Gonna kill 'em," Daniel slurred, already losing the will to fight sleep. He was stubbornly glaring at the blood though. Every single one of them was going to pay for what they'd done. For every single drop of blood.
"Sure you are," Cat said with a snort and she stretched out, giving Spot a weird look. He was different as a human. She wasn't sure what to feel about how affectionate she'd been with Spot as a dog. Weird.
It was weird.
Cat decided to stretch her legs and let the Bellwethers fight it out between themselves. She stepped out and looked around, trying to find her bearings.
They'd really parked in the middle of nowhere.
It was, at least, somewhat light out when a hand shook him awake. He groaned, displeased to find himself back among the waking world so soon, and shifted away from the hand, trying to stay asleep. He's awake? He hadn't been a second ago, and he'd be most happy if she'd leave him alone to go back to sleep. Just a little while longer...
Wait--he. Daniel? Daniel was...? He bolted upright and looked around, only to find Daniel exactly where they'd left him, slumped on the floor of the car. Oh. No change there. Except now he was facing upwards, and his eyes were open. "Daniel?" he asked, trying to keep the joy from his voice. Was he awake? That'd be good. That'd be so good. "How are you feeling?"
Oh...not good, if the way he cringed when Bell spoke was any indication. Bell gave him an apologetic grimace and reached out to pet his hair back instead. It'd only been a single day this time. No, not even. A single night. A busy night, but... it was better than it taking longer yet.
In the front seat, Spot shifted and stretched, awakened by all the rest of the noise. Huh. The truck. When had he gotten here? Last thing he remembered was getting shot point-blank with a dart gun on top of a train car, and then...he yawned, looking around. Cat had driven them...? But he didn't remember her being much of a driver. "The, the hunters," he blurted out, looking around the truck. Oh, there was Bell, all bloodstained in the backseat. Should've put him in this seat, ha. "What happened...?"
"They're all dead," Bell said. "All human, too, so I got us out of there." Which... was strange, given the number of hybrids among them. Was this part of their attempt to rid their ranks of humans? Some kind of counter measure against Daniel's goatling? Or were these just the unlucky guys on standby in the area? He supposed they'd never know, now.
He glanced back at Daniel and grimaced in apology. "Sorry," he whispered. He kept forgetting to be quiet. "You want water? Food, anything? I'll get it for you," he offered. Daniel was probably thirsty at least, right?
Breathing. The sound phased in and out; loud, then soft. Daniel became aware enough to distinguish several different sounds this time -Cat's lighter breathing, then Bellwether's, close by and Bellwether's distant. One of them had to be sinewy-goat. No telling which. Of course there wouldn't be. It smelled like blood again. No surprise there.
Daniel managed to curl his hand into a fist this time. His eyes fluttered open.
Darkness. No. Not quite. There was a texture to it -like a thick, gruff fabric.
Daniel directed his eyes around and tried to shift. His body was sluggish in response. Everything ached. Hunger stabbed at him, as well as the need to take a leak. Daniel tried to shift on his back, but his leg protested the motion and twitched, reminding him of what'd happened. The car-crash.
It was there in vivid detail now.
How the car came at him, how he'd thought the hospital was the be-all-end-all that would mend his brain and save his sanity.
Nothing of it all.
He'd been just as disturbed waking up as he had been going down.
Not any more though.
Was he cured now? It was quiet. Ominously so. Even though the noises and heat of the people cramped up and sleeping in the car was loud, his head was quiet. No voices, no whispers. No images. No noise.
He needed to get up though.
Daniel reached up and had to pause. His arm slumped down as he did. Okay. That'd effectively drained all of his energy.
"Bell...?" The sound of his voice was harsh, even though it was little more than a hoarse whisper, feeble and weak.
Loud enough to wake up someone though.
Cat wasn't sure what had woken her up, but once she caught sight of movement in the rear-view mirror from the odd angle she'd chosen to sleep in, folded up in the driver's seat, she realized it was Daniel.
"...Daniel?" she started.
Even her soft voice managed to elicit a cringe in Daniel.
Cat blinked, confused, then decided it was better if Bellwether deal with it and reached over to shake the guy awake.
"Bell? I think he's awake..." she called softly, trying not to aggravate Daniel's hearing, but it was a pointless exercise. The guy was going to have to suffer through normalcy any which way, might as well start now.
Asleep? Was that an improvement on comatose, or was it just the same old, same old? Bell sighed, mustering his energy, then, using all the effort he had left, turned to look at Daniel. Huh. He was moving and twitching, not that deathly still he'd been earlier. One way or another, this was an improvement. "That's good," he sighed, pushing his hair back.
When he lifted his hand to push his hair back, a patch of blood on his arm caught his eye; surprised, he gave it a once-over and found a shallow wound growing slowly more shallow. Oh, right, he'd been clipped. His hand went to his jaw, but aside from some half-dried blood, it was fine. The wound there had long since healed.
Swap with Cat? Well...sure. He was probably better equipped to deal with Daniel waking up, too. Sit on him? He gave her a funny look, then snorted. "Let's hope it doesn't come to that," he commented dryly. With any luck, the cure would've worked, and the Daniel who woke up would be rational and not quite so prone to suicidal outbursts. He sat there for another second, gathering his energy and the will to move, then pushed off the chair and opened the door, stepping outside for just a moment before he opened the back door. "Alright, swap," he told Cat, offering her a hand to climb out; Daniel was taking up her foot space, after all.
It felt really nice to lie down, even if he couldn't stretch out fully. He let out a satisfied sigh and shifted, getting comfortable. "Hey, Daniel," he muttered, leaning over the edge to look at him. Compared to before, he was being pretty active, but then again, he'd been basically a corpse earlier. He reached down and took ahold of Daniel's twitching fingers, shaking them a little like he was shaking Daniel's hand. "Wake up soon, alright?"
Then he settled back down with a sigh and rolled into his back, tucking the injured arm on top of him, too, so as to protect the upholstery from being bloodstained yet again. Probably too late for that, but better than not trying, right? "Wake me up if he wakes up," Bell muttered, already half asleep.
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