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Still frightened, was he? Daniel felt like teasing Bell-boy for it, if things hadn't been so dire just the other day. The passenger's seat was a mess, so Daniel got in next to Cat and found Spot crawled all over him in search of whatever.
"I'm fine, silly mutt," he soothed the animal, stroking Spot's fur.
That still didn't prevent the animal from taking up position on his lap, strangely enough avoiding the leg that hurt. Kind of funny, dogs.
Before long they were moving, the breeze chasing away the smell of decaying blood and bodily fluids. Daniel rested back, still somewhat drained after everything. His stomach was full, he'd drunk plenty, so Daniel's body declared now was a good time to rest. Having a Spot-shaped blanket certainly didn't help matters.
He was almost dozing when they pulled over.
Bell-boy's voice sealed the deal and Daniel glared at the car wash. The cheap kind, with hoses in little stalls. Probably better than an automatic wash where they could pay attention to what came out of the vehicle.
Taking a deep breath, Daniel got out and took the other active hose.
"Try not to soak everything," Daniel warned. The seats wouldn't dry for a mile and two turns if they went about it that way. He got a cloth from the glove-compartment and wetted that, using the soap-drenched material to wipe down the seat.
Finally, he used the hose to get the foot-space flushed of what gore had dripped down. The doors were next, the insides too, but unlike the seat they'd dry up just fine.
Cat was watching them from a safe distance, loitering in the sun.
Between the two of them it didn't take long to get the car in some kind of reasonable state. Daniel hosed the mats last. A lot of blood came out of those. Good thing they were dark to begin with. The amount of stains wouldn't be explained away, even if they tried.
Smelled like soap now.
Daniel zoned out watching the pink drain away in the gutter.
"Hey, you're not going funny again, are you?" Cat called out.
Daniel raised his head and smirked. "Nah, I'm not. Just a little tired still."
Cat nodded. That she believed. Daniel had looked pretty bad right after the accident. It was nothing short of a miracle he was washing his own blood from the car.
A plastic bag? He glanced at Cat, then nodded and shoved the clothes inside. It'd be better than leaving them where someone could see them, or worse, smell them. Probably be best just to dump them in some unnamed dumpster somewhere and drive away. He'd keep an eye out.
The truck had recovered some, thanks to bring aired out; he could now easily suppress the urge to vomit, though the unpleasant scent lingered, acrid and uncomfortably organic. Daniel tossed the blood-sodden floor mats in the back, and Bell gave the inside of the windshield a quick rub to get some of the red film off. Good enough to drive, though he wasn't going to go too far. The first car wash he saw, he'd jump out and hose the whole damn thing off, inside and out.
"Yeah," Bell said, a little too eager. He did not want Daniel anywhere near that steering wheel, no thank you. Not until he'd taken the cure. Not until he was better. Forcing himself to speak more calmly, he nodded and repeated him himself: "Yeah, I'll drive."
Driver's seat wasn't bloodsoaked, in any case. He climbed in and waited while the others loaded up, Spot sneezing a few times at the strong smell before he could be coaxed inside. Even then, he crawled over to Daniel and nosed at him, looking for where he was hurt. He smelled Daniel's blood all over. Where had he hurt himself? Was he okay?
Bell started the engine, and it stuttered out. He frowned. Could've sworn he'd done that right. He tried again, and this time it roared to life. There was something about the sound of it that he didn't like, but it was running. Time for them to move along.
Out of the motel parking lot and onto the road. The smell got better once they were moving, reek snatched away by the wind before it could hit their noses. Bell kept an eye out for a car wash, and luckily didn't have long to wait. Barely five miles up the road, he found one, and the kind with stalls and hoses instead of an automatic wash, at that. He pulled the car into one of the stalls and got out, before the smell could hit him again. "Alright, let's wash this damn thing," he declared, marching over to the pump. The last of their cash vanished into the machine; hoses twitched as they came to life. Bell grabbed one and approached the car, grim-faced. Time to clean out that smell.
"Mostly clothes and water," Cat replied with a semi-shrug. Little of her, except for the shirt Bellwether was wearing right now. Such a waste, that one. Honestly, the man was daft or whatever when it came to clothes. Maybe he preferred the girly stuff. It only occurred to Cat then that Bellwether might have more outward tendency to show off his orientation than Daniel had even though Daniel was more extravert.
Cat pulled her shirt from her chest and waved the cloth to create a little air-flow against her skin. The heat and sun was all good and well, but there was such a thing called exaggeration.
Daniel seemed mostly lost in thought, too much so to really take notice. Cat tore her gaze away and followed Bellwether back to the motel-room.
Daniel snapped to once in the room, but there was little he could do to help gather their stuff. Most of his clothes were in the messy ball of blood-soaked clothes Bell-boy held. He took some of the water bottles that were still unopened to relieve some of the strain on Cat, but she was left holding just a couple of cans.
"There's a plastic bag if you want?" Cat hinted, suggesting the soiled clothes could go in there. They could ditch them in the back of the truck until they found a nice obscure place to dispose of them.
Or ritually burn then.
Either sounded pretty good.
Going back in the truck: not so good.
The car still smelled pretty bad, though the smell wasn't as repulsive as when they'd first lowered the windows. The extent of the blood-spill became evident. Most of the leather upholstery could be cleaned, but the gruff mats that were on the floor in the front were pretty much ruined.
Daniel ducked inside to grab the worst one and tossed it in the back for later cleaning.
The smell pretty much lingered, but it was bearable. A quick stroke with the wiper cleared part of the front-window enough to see the road. Daniel didn't want to do much more until they had proper cleaners.
"You want to drive?" he posed to Bell. Last time had obviously not gone so swimmingly. But he'd already been delusional when he'd convinced them they needed to go some place. Bell-boy should've just knocked him out right then and there.
Cat wasn't going to clean? Ha, no surprise there. He snorted to himself. Daniel put her in her place by simply being calm, which was a tactic Bell would've never thought of himself. Something to remember for dealing with Cat in the future. Thigh he doubted he'd be able to stay so calm in the face of questioning. Staying calm wasn't one of his strong points, after all.
Tomorrow. Wash the car tonight, and tomorrow, Daniel would take the cure. He took a deep breath, tasting the air in the restaurant, trying not to run over the same possibilities he'd already run over a million times. There was no purpose to it. No purpose. Nothing would be gained by worrying, but he couldn't help it.
A few hours. No. Ha, never. "Maybe," he agreed lightheartedly. Maybe it would. Who knew? The goat could work miracles. But it took time.
He stood as well. The waiter handed him Daniel's card, and he put it away. Then it was out the door, back into the blazing heat. It hadn't gotten any less hot while they were in the restaurant; the sun still had a ways to go to set. Well... good. Good. It'd help the car dry. Bell pushed his hair back and started for the car, leading the way back through as much shade as he could find.
"Cat," he said, "we have much in the hotel room?" She was the one who'd brought it in, after all. If anyone knew, it'd be her. He recalled some food, some water...his old clothes, though...well, they weren't torn up, but they were bloodstained. Soaked, more than stained, quite honestly. But he should still grab his jacket out.
The hotel loomed, an oasis of shade in a desert of sun-soaked asphalt. Their room felt incredible, cool air blasting out, but they couldn't stay long. It wouldn't belong to them much longer. He found his coat first, then gathered the bloodsoaked clothes into a neat little ball, tucking Daniel's on the inside so the most of the blood was hidden away. There wasn't much food left; he left Cat to gather that while he spilled some dog food out for Spot. "Sorry you couldn't get the buffet," he told the dog, scratching his ruff. Had been a while since Spot had been out, hadn't it? He almost missed the guy. Except not really.
Was Lenny really already gone?
Daniel stared ahead at that thought, letting Bell-boy decide the details of what they had to do without commenting. They all sounded like things he'd already figured they'd have to do anyway.
"Just in case," he mumbled, agreeing with Bell-boy.
"As long as you know I'm not cleaning," Cat muttered under her breath. The bloodied car was not getting touched by her until it was cleaned. Hopefully the seat had survived having Daniel bleed out on it.
"Nah, we'll clean it. My mess anyway," Daniel soothed Cat's worries.
"I didn't mean it like that," she muttered sourly and stopped her attempts at Daniel's strawberries.
Now she felt guilty.
"Yeah, tonight sounds fine," Daniel replied, not missing a single beat. Less people to see them wash the car. The cover of darkness would hopefully obscure some of the pink hues their dirty water was going to have. Could claim to have killed some deer or whatever, worse came to worst.
"I guess tomorrow, give us a day to get everything sorted," Daniel offered. More than that and it couldn't be guaranteed that the sphere they'd received would hold up to earth's atmosphere. Obviously Bell-goat had given it some special treatment, but Daniel didn't want his cure to go past its expiry date.
"Who knows? Maybe it'll be fine after a just few hours," he shrugged. And surely it snowed in hell. His leg at least seemed to be healing fast. Broken one day, mended the next. Miracles happened every day where the goat was concerned.
Unrealistic though. If they prepared for the worst, at least they couldn't be disappointed. That said, the goat wouldn't have offered if it thought they were in immediate danger. The goatling was too precious to lose to something as foolish as repairing a human shell.
"I guess we should get going then," he said. Plenty they had to do today. Clean up the soiled clothes, burn them and get rid of the evidence, clean the car and purchase supplies. Get cash to make sure Bell-boy and Cat were sorted and find a nice little quiet place to be comatose for a day or two. Hopefully not more than that.
He was still stiff when he stood, but the pain had greatly diminished.
Say goodbye, huh? He shook his head. "In a way, he's already been gone for a while," Bell said quietly. Landon didn't come out any more. Not for long enough for it to matter. Not to do anything meaningful. Landon hadn't been really there for weeks now, and each successive time he came out seemed to last for shorter, give Bell less time with a lucid Landon. The sooner he could have them--one of them, both of them, whatever they became--well and lucid, the better.
Cat stole one of Daniel's strawberries, and Bell followed suit, half just to show her who was whose boyfriend. He chewed on it while Daniel explained, then nodded. "Well--not throw you in the back of the truck, but... we should get that truck cleaned out so we can be nice and mobile," he said. "Just in case."
In any case, bunkering down in this crappy motel didn't strike him as a good idea. It'd been too quiet, lately, on the goat front of things. It unnerved him, quite frankly. Like the calm before the storm. And now they'd brought out his goat, and his goat was fucking around with Daniel, and it all just seemed...too peaceful. No hunters, no goats... no way. Something was going to happen. It had to happen, or he'd go mad.
"At least we aired it out," he muttered, half to himself. Ha, and he couldn't wait to see the people's faces at the car wash when blood started pouring out of the upholstery of their vehicle. It'd probably be best if they took care of that in a less popular car wash. Less people to report them for being serial killers. "Wanna take it to a car wash tonight?"
And then...what else. Well, they'd need groceries. Gas. He had Daniel's pin, so they wouldn't be completely out of money, but it wasn't as though he knew how much they could put on the card. Maybe they should get a tent again, and take better care of it this time. It'd give them more sleeping options in places harder to find than hotels...though then again, they'd never hesitated to use an abandoned building or two when it came to sleeping.
The waiter came with the bill, and Bell handed over Daniel's card. "When are you going to take it?" he asked, glancing at Daniel. It'd give him a deadline.
"It's not just about asking, you know? It's...might be the last time you see him," Daniel posed. If they'd be 'who they were meant to be' or 'cured' or whatever, chances were big it'd be Daniel. His name on the passport and everything.
"Waiting probably isn't..." he shook his head.
A shrug followed the shake. He cared. Most of the time. Daniel cared for Lenny a great deal actually. Not so much for his opinion or anything, after all they were both free men to do as they pleased. Daniel just didn't care to give things like that much thought. Over-thinking things froze people in place, making them indecisive. Not deciding was a choice too. Often a bad one.
"You're right," Daniel agreed. He'd taken on the goatling hoping it'd cure his head and it hadn't. He'd flirted with the goat to have to cure him, and it wouldn't. Now he had the cure and he was trying to close the chapter behind him in a decent fashion, but honestly, what was the point?
He ought to just go down blazing, just in case his number was up over that of Lenny's.
And what if they were always meant to have both Lenny and Daniel in there? Hah, now there was a good joke.
Daniel walked with Bell-boy to their table and sat down as well. Cat was just about finishing off her food, but seemed content with just the one monster-portion rather than going for seconds.
"So what're we going to do? Make some distance, find some place quiet before I take the pill that will decide the rest of my life?" Daniel offered cheerfully, picking off his strawberries one by one.
Cat's hand sneaked around his plate to steal one and Daniel let her.
"Distance? What for?"
"Hunters, they tend to know when it's been Bell-goat," he explained.
Cat's eyebrows knitted together in thought as she translated the sentence to something she could make sense of.
"It's like a lure?"
Daniel shrugged. Lure was as good a term as any.
"Could just ditch me in the back of the truck and wait it out that way," Daniel shrugged. Not as if he'd be conscious for it. They would have to get the truck cleaned out though.
And get gas.
Daniel sidled up to him as he was loading up with some more food. Six zero what what--wait, this was his pin, wasn't it? Shit! He closed his eyes and recited it to himself a few times, memorizing the numbers. Alright. Yep, okay. He had it. It was easy anyways, just a bunch of multiples of three and a zero. Baby stuff, in terms of memorization.
He opened his eyes and met Daniel's, weary. Landon deserved a say in this, he did, but how was he supposed to ask the man? Landon was out for minutes at a time, and usually spent the whole time neck deep in vivid hallucinations. "I'd like to, but chances are he wouldn't be conscious enough to even know what I was asking, would he?" Besides, he was afraid to go too long without taking it. It was goat stuff and might decay, on one hand; on the other hand, he felt like there was a timer ticking down right beside him, counting down the seconds before Daniel's next attempt on his own life. Both cases meant he wanted Daniel to take it as soon as possible. And besides, just having to keep an eye on Daniel 24/7 was exhausting, made it feel like he was suffocating. The sooner they could move past that, the better.
Really, he felt as though Daniel's opinion was their true opinion, in a way. Daniel spoke his mind and did what he wanted, if he was impulsive. Landon was easily led, easily swayed. Even if he didn't want the cure at first, he'd probably cave when he saw how Bell wanted him to be well. And he was a logical man; how could he turn it down?
Bell knew he was only making excuses, but he couldn't help it. He--he didn't want Landon to be out. The man was just too much of a liability. Too much to have to...watch, and hold down, and parent. At least Daniel acted like a human being, up until he tried to murder himself.
He snorted and poked Daniel's gut gently, forcing his other thoughts away. "And since when have you cared? Landon's opinion didn't stop you from taking in the goatling." Shaking his head, Bell grabbed another brownie, then headed back to the table to eat his seconds.
But it could, couldn't it? Change Daniel, that was. Until he was someone else entirely. Not that Cat claimed she knew Daniel very well, let alone his other half, but hey. What if suddenly Daniel showed some unwanted side-effects of the change? Like being straight or whatever. She should've just lied about what it'd do.
Cat stifled her concerns with food and watched the two go for seconds.
She was free to go where she wanted. Leaving them behind was pretty easy, after all. What time she spent loitering around only served to make the time spent out on the streets, alone, shorter.
Sure, who was she kidding?
If she walked away, she'd never find out what happened to her parents. Maybe that was for the best. Cat nudged some food around and sighed.
This was supposed to be her lucky break!
Daniel browsed the foray of food with a little more attention this time, picking up some grilled chicken, some sweet tarts for desert and strawberries. Things he'd enjoy eating, rather than easy, fast stuff that would absolve the pressing hunger.
"Six-zero-three-nine," Daniel told Bell-boy with a smirk.
The man already was in possession of his wallet, so he might as well know. And this way Cat couldn't overhear and run off with his card. That'd be a nuisance, if nothing else. Daniel just hoped that the knowledge Lenny had concerning their hidden accounts wouldn't be lost. That'd be a proper nuisance.
"You okay with this, Bell-boy? Could wait around for Lenny, have him get a say?" Not that Landon would remain sane for long enough to make a conscious decision on their sanity of all things, but it was worth a shot. Bell-boy had met and loved Lenny first, after all.
It'd been relatively calm lately, if it wasn't for the self-inflicted chaos, so there was no reason for Landon to stay away; other than that reality was doing a one-eighty on them while they weren't looking.
Who needed reality anyway?
For most people it didn't even include goats and how short-sighted was that?
Daniel felt almost excited at the prospect of experiencing what normal would be like -even if it was going to be boring. Never a dull moment with Bell-boy around anyway.
He was the last to return to the table, his plate loaded down with all the food he wanted. Cat and Daniel were already eating; Cat with her usual gusto, though somewhat diminished after her experience the other night, Daniel eating with uncharacteristic aplomb. It was good to see, and he settled down to eat with a satisfied smile. This was good. This was what he'd been hoping for. One last, happy meal before...whatever.
Daniel didn't seem bothered by taking the cure, at least when Cat questioned him. He'd seemed more conflicted in private, but even then, he'd decided pretty easily. A lifetime of schizophrenia, huh? Yeah.. Bell nodded silently. He didn't know what it was like to be schizophrenic, to watch reality distort around him and have no way to know it wasn't right, but the few times he'd experienced hallucinations thanks to the goat's blood...well, it hadn't been pretty. Or pleasant. And he knew that dealing with the other end of it wasn't fun, either. To be free of it, free of the disease...if he had that choice, and his reality was dealing with hallucinations daily, then it'd be a no brainer, wouldn't it? Even if it changed him in some fundamental way, it'd be worth it to not have to deal with the disease anymore. Even on his end, he felt that way.
Besides, when had Daniel ever taken things seriously? Even deciding to take in the goatling had happened the same way, him blithely swallowing it away without thinking of the consequences. It was just the way Daniel was.
In any case, the food was good, the three of them were happy, and everything was fine in the world. What else could he ask for?
Daniel stood to get seconds. Bell picked the last of the meat off the bones of the chicken legs he'd grabbed, then stood to follow him. At least one more plate, then dessert, and then he'd be done. Well, maybe he'd give sneaking some of the food home a go, see if he couldn't grab some of the drier, cleaner foods and wrap them up in a napkin for later. It'd probably be a good idea. With Daniel taking the cure, they might be stuck here for a while; be good if he could save some money on food.
What'd happened to these people that they stopped caring for people's appearances anyway? They looked like something peeled off of the sidewalk, but this waiter just smiled and went about business. Guess it took all sorts, huh?
Who cared though? Daniel tucked in to his first meal, indiscriminately picking off whatever food had landed on his plate. Rather than pile it up to excess like Cat had, Daniel got a big portion and vouched to go for seconds once this was finished. Bell-boy was much the same -hungry after having to bring out Bell-goat, as per usual.
Cat got a decent portion, but it was less gross watching her try and shovel everything inside. Apparently Cat had learned a valuable lessen the other day: mixing too much food was going to make you feel like crap.
"So what's going to happen after you take that thing?" she asked softly, a little bit shy even. Daniel watched Cat for a second, then had to respect her for bringing up the elephant in the room.
"Who knows?" he shrugged.
"Shouldn't you make it your business to know? It's your head -it's you who's going to be..." Cat gestured at all of Daniel, "...cured, or whatever that means."
"You deal with a life-time of schizophrenia and see what you choose," Daniel said matter-of-factly.
"...I guess," Cat muttered demurely. Why wasn't Daniel as concerned as they were about this? Then again, Daniel's reaction to stressful life events had always been a little bit off.
"It'll be fine, Kitty-Cat," Daniel soothed. "Can't get much worse than this."
Though Daniel felt aware and grounded now, how long before that'd change? A day? Half a day? A few hours? Until they got into their car and were driving? Until he crashed them all and Cat died alongside them?
Though Cat didn't seem to agree, she didn't try to reason with Daniel either.
And Bellwether seemed okay with it too, even though he at least was having a tough time. She wondered whether Daniel would've killed himself to save Bellwether, whether Daniel had the same conviction, but what did she know?
Daniel didn't seem bothered, and stood to get seconds.
For some reason he didn't seem to be able to get enough food. His leg started to feel better though. Soon he'd be all recovered from his little accident.
The sun burned down on them. His skin felt crispy and tender after another few minutes under its glare, and the asphalt was hot enough he could feel the heat burning up at him from beneath, baking him from the ground up. When Daniel spoke, it almost didn't get through at first, his brain preoccupied with not dying from the heat. Cash? Yeah, he'd noticed too. Or...numbers? What good would numbers...oh. His pin. Shit. Wow. Did Daniel really trust him with that? Well... why not? Bell had saved his life multiple times, and at this point, he couldn't really imagine life without Daniel and Landon.
"Well, whichever you think is better," he said, shrugging like it wasn't a big deal. Wow. Daniel really trusted him, though. That was amazing.
He remained in a happy, if overheated daze until the air conditioner of the buffet place blasted away all his thoughts. Damn, but that felt good. A waiter came up to him, and he gave the man a slightly wild look, emotions high after the heat and Daniel's unexpected offer. "Three for...whatever," he said. Lunch? Dinner? Whatever they were eating. His rhythm was all out of sync after napping all day. It was still bright out, but who knew what that meant. It felt like it'd be sunny at midnight right now with how hot it was. The waiter smiled and looked them to their seats. Didn't see anything unusual here, huh? Then again, buffet chains weren't known for being classy establishments in the first place.
The food looked delicious, though, and that was what really mattered. Bell didn't even bother sitting before he started for the buffet. "Um, just get us water," he mentioned to the waiter before the waiter even asked about drinks; luckily, the man didn't seem too bothered. He hurried over to the buffet and started loading his plate up, not discriminating too much. Now that he was in front of food, he was quickly discovering that he really was that hungry. Forget the reeking car and the heat, he was getting stuffed. Strangely, Daniel was also getting plenty of food--but hey, couldn't complain about that. The man needed more meat on his bones.
A buffet? Daniel wasn't too sure about those. Usually they got a lot of things wrong on buffets, especially when it came to keeping warm food heated and cold food chilled. He was too hungry to care however.
Daniel cringed sympathetically when Bell-boy recoiled for the foul scent -the scent of stale, rotting blood. Walking, was it? He sighed. Yeah, his leg hurt like a bitch when he put weight on it and it was hot as hell out, but sitting in the evidence of his attempted suicide was just a bit...awkward. Morbid too.
"I guess," Daniel said.
Not far turned out to be a little further than Daniel liked. At least he was getting used to what to do and not do to the healing limb. Most of what he needed to do for walking belonged somewhere south of the range of 'not' though, which was concerning.
Food would hopefully make it all better.
"Should probably get cash, just in case," he pointed out. What if he forgot the codes to the card? Maybe he ought to let Bell-boy know. Nothing they wouldn't share anyway, and besides, hadn't Bell-boy proven his loyalty by killing himself over and over to save his sorry ass?
"Or you know, let you know the numbers," Daniel shrugged.
The air-conditioning in the place they'd found was worth the trip already. Daniel sighed out in relief. Food, the scent of delicious food tickled his nose and while it wouldn't exactly be anything extra-ordinary, Daniel could appreciate the volume for cash they were getting.
"All you can eat," he said, slightly mesmerized.
"Ugh, I think I'm over that," Cat commented dryly.
Daniel chuckled and moved further inside.
"Well, it's on me," he invited with a shrug.
Cat had a shine to her eyes betraying she was counting her scores already, trying and failing to minimize her desire to have everything in one sitting like she had before.
Daniel was less restrained; unlike usual. He knew that if he took the goat's gift, he'd need all the reserves and more, most likely. Goats liked resetting things, like it'd done to Bell-boy more than once. If his brain was going to suffer through the same treatment, Daniel had a feeling he wasn't going to be conscious for the duration of his brain's restructuring. The prospect was kind of daunting, but Daniel was too hungry to let the though ruin his appetite.
Everything, huh? "So a buffet," he commented wryly. Despite his hunger from bringing out the goat, stuffing himself didn't sound like a great idea. More like, there was a good chance he'd just puke if he ate too much in this heat. Still, the thing about a buffet was that you could eat exactly as much as you wanted, which also appealed to him at the moment.
Daniel walked with a limp. It was worrying, but honestly, if that was the only aftermath from the crash, then he'd gotten off lightly. Bell walked close to him just in case, keeping an eye out for trouble. If there were hunters in the area, they might've noticed him bringing the goat out. And hell, who knew? Goat might even attract more goats just by being out. Seemed like just the thing the little fucker would do, just to punish them for bringing it out.
Drove him a bit? Bell rolled his eyes in preparation to deliver the obvious answer--what, did he think they'd brought the goat out on the side of the highway amidst a sea of rubberneckers?--but Cat beat him to the punch. A little, ha. "What's the matter? Not like we've never moved injured people before," Bell said, yanking the door open.
The scent that emerged made him physically recoil, a hand to his mouth to shove back the urge to puke. Smelled like a slaughterhouse full of rotting meat and decaying blood, times a million, scent made stronger by the intense sun. He tried to move closer a second time, but even expecting it, the stench was intense, putrid and sharp enough to make his eyes water. Taking a deep breath of fresh air and holding his nose shut, he plunged in, reaching out to roll down the opposite window, then the driver's window. A repeat of the maneuver, and all four windows were open to air the truck out. He backed away and shut the door, breathing the cleaner air. Okay. Truck might not be an option.
"So, you, uh, feel up for walking?" he asked Daniel, half-laughing. As he asked, he scanned the horizon for signboards, looking for restaurants. Oh--there! It was a chain, but from the name, he recognized it as a buffet. "Looks like there's something not too far from here," he offered. Be better than sitting in that car, anyways.
Oh, right. Cash. They could get some while they were at it. Just in case the bauble was going to incapacitate him like receiving the goatling had. Daniel hoped not. Didn't want to leave Cat and Bell-boy hanging while they waited though.
Daniel moved slow. His leg was being a pain, but at least it bore his weight. There was a significant limp about his gait as a result and Daniel prayed to some overseeing deity that no one was going to recognize either of them from the crash -there was no telling how far they'd travelled before arriving at the cheap motel.
It'd be suspicious regardless, he imagined. A dying man who was suddenly up and about as if getting hit by a car had been nothing more than a gentle tap on the shoulder.
Daniel shielded his eyes from the sun. Did it have to be such an audaciously beautiful day?
What did he want to eat?
"Everything," Daniel mumbled. "Chocolate covered waffles, softly boiled eggs and...honey-drenched milk on the side and...fries and steak and everything," he summed up. He was ravenous. So much, it wasn't even funny. Daniel felt he could up Cat one on in terms of eating the most gross manifestation of food gathered on one plate.
Daniel yawned for good measure, breathing in the fresh, burning air of a sunny summer afternoon and took his time. There was nothing else they could do against the heat, honestly, but do everything in a slow, calm fashion.
That, and his leg really wouldn't allow for any fast travelling. Despite that, Daniel kept his eyes peeled for any hostiles. Bringing Bell-goat out usually came with a slew of problems, most of which were detrimental to their health.
"Shit," Daniel muttered when he saw the car.
"Don't tell me you drove me here before I healed?"
"We drove you a bit, why?" Cat's question was posed innocently.
The heat in the truck had evaporated the blood that had soaked into the front-seat and there was a thin, red film clinging to the insides of the windows.
"That's just..." Daniel hummed, not too keen on opening the door. Rather, the front seat he'd occupied wasn't likely good to use. So they'd have to huddle in the back with Spot, who was already panting to alleviate the heat tormenting his smaller frame.
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