[identity profile] draconica-nova.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] wl_fanfiction
Title: Bedtime Story
Pairings: Colin/Ryan and a smidge of Chip/Greg.
Rating: PG
Word Count: 3,907
Summary: Ryan has a pretty weird dream…
Author’s Notes: This story is the result of too much sugar. And you’ll soon see why.

Bedtime Story

“…They rode off on horseback into the sunset together and they lived happily ever after. The end.”

Ryan shut the book and looked down at his sleeping daughter in her crib. He sighed happily. She was barely 1 year old and had recently entered that stage where she was the cutest thing in the world. It seemed that she had fallen asleep sometime ago whilst Ryan had been reading her a bedtime story. The typical sort - handsome princes, distressed princesses, magic unicorns and fire-breathing dragons. Even after she had drifted off, he had continued to read as if to assure her that he was still there.

Slipping the book back onto the shelf, he leant down and kissed his baby girl gently on the forehead before leaving to return to his own room.

“Is Claire down for the night?” Pat asked, not taking her eyes of her book as Ryan slid into bed.

“Out like a light,” he confirmed as he settled back against the pillows and yawned. “Hopefully I will be soon as well.”

Pat sighed. “I’m telling you, Ryan, you’re working yourself far too hard. It’s little wonder you’re so tired all the time. I still think Green Screen is a little too much for you at the moment, and Drew will understand if you don’t take part because you’ve got a young child now. You can’t keep going back and forth to L.A all the time, it’ll drain you completely-”

She was cut off from her point when she looked down and noticed that Ryan had fallen into a deep sleep. She was about to shake him out of it before thinking better of it - he was absolutely exhausted.

“I’ll tell you tomorrow then, shall I?” she sighed amusingly, before setting her book down on the bedside table, turning off the light and settling down in order to drift off as well.

~~~

Ryan’s view twisted and morphed in a spectrum of different colours, momentarily hypnotising him, until the patterns formed an image in his mind. There was a large fountain in front of him flowing clean and clear sparkling water, surrounded by trees and shrubbery with the neighing of horses trotting about in a stable behind him.

“What the-?”

Looking down at his attire, he saw himself clad in medieval type clothing, regal, clean and smart. And hanging on his belt was a sword in a sheath, the handle inscribed with the letters S.R.S. “Wow, this is new.”

“Oh, you’re here at last!” It was a shrieking feminine noise but it held an instantly recognisable tone. A flash of pink light followed and right in front of Ryan appeared a sight that was incredibly hard not to laugh at.

Wayne had appeared wearing a large pink silk dress and a crown, clutching a wand and smiling a toothy grin. He had wings, which were obviously strapped on fake ones and his feet were clad in what looked like silver stiletto heels.

“Sir Ryan, you must hurry. For the fair maiden awaits your arrival so she can be rescued from her awful entrapment.”

Wayne’s high-pitched voice at anytime was funny, but combined with his stupid outfit, Ryan simply couldn’t stop laughing.

“Wayne, what the hell are you doing?” he gasped as he reached a pause in his hysterics.

Wayne ‘hmph’ed and placed his hands on his hips, glaring at Ryan. “Shut up, man.” he said in his normal deep voice. “This is your dream, not mine.”

Ryan stopped in his laughter attack when he realised that yes -- this was all a dream. It simply had to be. But if the sort of thing he dreams about is Wayne in a dress, quite frankly he was scared to find out what else was here.

“Anyway,” Wayne continued, clearing his throat and regaining his previous feminine posture and voice. “The fair maiden awaits. You must venture forth and save her from a terrible fate. Come, look into this water and see the truth reflected.”

There was a bit of a pause and then Ryan spoke again. “What?”

“Fair maiden. In distress. Needs help. You save. Water. Come and see. Yes?” Wayne repeated slowly, pointing to the nearby fountain.

Another pause.

“Huh?”

“Oh! Just get over here!” And with that, the younger man grabbed Ryan by the scruff of his neck and pulled him sharply towards the flowing water. “Now look.”

Ryan squinted at the clear-bluish liquid and wondered what it was he was supposed to be seeing. He saw himself in the rippling water, his normal self with a confused face.

“I can only see me. Is that it?” he asked.

Wayne huffed, slapping a palm into his forehead. “No! Look again, look harder.”

So he did, squinting until the muscles around his eyes hurt. Before him, the water swirled and danced in an impressive whirlpool effect and in the center, something began to take shape. An image, no less, of someone in the window of what looked like a large tower. Whoever they were, they were dressed in the typical outfit of a fairytale princess, leaning out of their window and sighing. And it looked like… No, it was. It was Colin.

“But… but that’s just ridiculous.” Ryan spluttered as the water’s image became even more clear. “That’s just insane.”

“Well, I didn’t want to say anything,” Wayne said, playing with the waistband on his dress. “But this is your fantasy and Colin’s your damsel in distress. And who are you to argue with fate anyway?”

“This isn’t fate, this is a dream. They’re two very different things. And… and why would Colin be my princess?” Ryan said, losing his trait of thought for the moment when he looked back at the fountain and saw the images fade away into the calming water.

Wayne shrugged. “It’s quite disturbing, I agree. But look at your sword. What do those letters stand for?”

Ryan looked again at his weapon and the initials S.R.S. “Erm… soclicitors read Shakespeare?”

“Sir Ryan Stiles,” Wayne said, smiling. “Colin awaits your arrival, It’s your fate-”

“Stop saying that.” Ryan glared at the younger man, but he was smiling at least. Well, this was the most ridiculous dream he’d ever had, so why not play with it? He sighed, defeated. “How do I get there?”

Wayne grinned and slipped back into his high-voiced persona. “You ride your horse along the forest trail until you find the magic unicorn. He shall tell you which way to go.”

Ryan’s eyebrow rose up. “The magic unicorn? And what horse?”

“This horse.” Wayne waved his wand in the air and another flash of light momentarily blinded them. Once the sparkles cleared, Ryan opened his eyes and saw a striking white stallion sporting a golden saddle standing before him, snorting.

“Ugh! Those entrances are killers on the eyes,” it cried, shaking its head and whinnying. Its voice was so familiar as well, it sounded like... Oh, this was just getting weirder and weirder.

“Chip? Is that you?” Ryan said, walking around the animal curiously.

Chip looked at him, blinking in surprise. “Oh hey, Ryan. What’s up?”

Ryan blinked back. “W-what’s up? Chip, You’re a horse!”

The horse snorted, rolling his eyes. “I prefer to think of myself as a noble steed,” said Chip, flicking his tail around. “Besides-”

“Yes yes, I get it. It’s my dream.” Ryan interrupted when he realised where the conversation was leading. “But that still doesn’t explain why you’re all here.”

“Just get on, hero,” Chip snorted, gesturing to the golden saddle. With a considerable amount of difficulty, Ryan climbed onto his noble steed and took the reins in his hands. Then, it occurred to him that he had very little experience of riding horses before it also occurred to him that he didn’t need experience - this was just a dream.

“Fair thee well,” called Wayne as they rode off down a pathway. “Good luck, Sir Ryan!”

Ryan nodded slowly as Wayne disappeared from view. “Yeah, yeah. This is gonna be fun.”

~~~

“How does it feel for me to ride on your back for a change?”

Chip snorted at Ryan’s question, rolling his eyes. “Actually, it’s quite comfortable. You have a soft butt.”

“Don’t ever say that again for as long as you live,” Ryan teased, and Chip just laughed in the particular horse-like way he did, turning his attention back to the forest trail. Before long, after more amounts of teasing and squabbling, the hero and his steed reached the cross-roads, which immediately spurred more squabbling about which way to go.

“Who’s the driver here?” said Ryan, hands on hips.

“Who’s the horse?” Chip said back, snorting

“Halt! Who goes there?”

The pair stopped arguing and froze at the demanding voice coming from the nearby forest. Ryan immediately knew who it was.

“Greg. Yep,” he said calmly, simply accepting the abnormality.

Out of the trees came a bright pink unicorn, sporting a pair of very recognisable black spectacles. “Ah, Ryan! Thought you might come through here. What‘s new with you?”

Ryan nodded in mock enthusiasm. “Oh, yes it’s all fine. Slightly freaked out and considering some dream therapy, but otherwise I‘m good.”

Chip sidled up towards Greg the unicorn and wiggled his eyebrows, grinning like an idiot. “How ya doing, pretty thing?”

Greg blushed and giggled, a giggle which came out as a nasally snorting noise. “Heh, I‘m okay…” He wafted his eyelashes behind his thick glasses, which just made Ryan slap a palm into his head.

“If you two are quite finished,” he huffed, “I’d rather like to be going now before Greg makes some pun about being horny.”

“All right, all right.” Greg sighed before turning to Chip and whispering. “Is being a jerk part of the hero’s job description?” Ryan made a face, showing that he’d clearly heard what the unicorn had whispered, whilst Chip burst out laughing. Greg just smiled and continued. “You go that way, left at the waterfall, keep going through the Jungle of Insanity and eventually you’ll find the castle you seek. Et voila.”

Ryan blinked. “Jungle of Insa- Fine, fine, I’m just not going to ask. C‘mon Chip, let‘s move.”

“I’ll be back to pick you up later,” leered Chip to a furiously blushing Greg as he began to trot up one of the paths.

“Oh, one more thing!” called Greg before the pair drifted out of earshot. “The castle is guarded by a ferocious fire-breathing Drew. Good luck with that!”

Ryan laughed nervously and waved back to the pink unicorn. “Sure, yeah, I got that covered. I got this, I… need mental help.”

“Look!” exclaimed Chip, nodding into the distance. “I can see the waterfall from here. Damsel in distress, here we come!” In his childlike excitement, Chip energetically reared up on his hind legs and whinnied loudly before galloping off at full speed towards the goal. Of course, in his haste, he neglected to notice that Ryan had fallen off his back and landed on the dusty ground, leaving him behind.

“Unf!” he cried as he landed flat on his rear. Quickly getting to his feet, he ran after his horse in hot pursuit. “I’m not on! CHIP!”

~~~

After a lot of complaining, arguing, whining and freaking out, Ryan and Chip eventually made it to the colossal castle, surrounded by dark clouds and dead trees.

“Typical stereotype,” sighed Ryan, climbing off his horse and stretching.

Chip swallowed. “Right, so, we’re going in there?”

Ryan nodded. “Yep.”

“To fight Drew?”

“That’s right.”

“And rescue Colin?”

“Absolutely.”

He snorted. “Hardly a vacation, if I‘m honest.”

Ryan unsheathed his sword from where it hung from his belt. He took a long look at it, the reflections from the silver blade and the inscribed lettering of his name. “I’ll probably wake up soon,” he said, twirling the sword in his hand with a slight flair. “But this was fun while it lasted.”

Side-by-side, they made their way across the rickety, worn drawbridge and down into the depths of the castle. Fire torches along the walls provided an adequate amount of light for them as they proceeded.

A huge flurry of bats suddenly rushed out of a nearby corridor and engulfed the pair. Ryan managed to shield himself with his arms. Chip on the other hand, being a horse, was unable to do so and resulted on getting a bat square in the face. He swore, loudly, and shook his head in pain.

“Shhhh!” Ryan whispered sternly, a finger to his pursed lips.

The horse glared. “I’d like to see you get smacked in the face by a heavy object.”

“Oh, that’s you retort for everything, huh?”

Chip didn’t answer, but his wide-eyed gaze was fixated on something behind Ryan, his white-furred face turning impossibly paler. Ryan, unaware of the terror, just laughed at him. “What’s the matter with you? Looks like you’ve seen a ghost.”

Realisation slowly dawned on him when he suddenly felt a hot breath tickle down his neck. He turned around deliberately slowly, delaying the inevitable and came face-to-face with a large red snout, tipped with two flaring nostrils. Then, he was met with two glaring green eyes, terrifyingly magnified by a pair of thick black glasses. The jaws opened to reveal a set of sharp, yellow teeth, a forked tongue running itself over them in a kind of wave.

Ryan winced at the strong smell of mints coming from the beast’s mouth. He smiled casually and brought a hand up in greeting. “You must be Drew.”

The dragon’s grin faltered and eventually turned into a pout. “Bah,” he barked, “who told you?”

The tall man raised an eyebrow. “The glasses kinda threw me,” he remarked with blindingly obvious sarcasm. “But Greg told me.”

Drew snorted, a fresh wave of minty heat blowing into Ryan’s face and causing his eyes to water. “Man, I was guaranteed that I wouldn‘t be recognizable in these.” He proceeded to focus on his spectacles, which simply left him cross-eyed. “Anyway, I assume you’re here for that, hmm? Fine, fine. This way.”

The lugging, red beast did an about turn, its large tail flicking back to nearly hit Ryan in the head. Unfortunately, Chip was still frozen with fear, so he got it right in the head. He cursed again and stamped a hoof to the cobbled flooring, creating sparks under his horseshoe. Noble steed? More like punching bag.

Drew lead the pair into a sort of courtyard, the battered walls and broken supports all around the edge in a kind of circle. One outstanding feature of this arena was the desk on the far side laden with red neon lighting. Ryan recognised it immediately and slapped a palm onto his face in dread.

“You know the rules,” Drew stated, seating himself customarily behind the desk, pushing his thick glasses up his snout with a clawed finger, “you get three chances. Every time you fail, you get a strike. Two strikes and I get to burn your ass. It‘s that simple.”

Knowing the answer already, Ryan shrugged and asked anyway. “And if I win?”

Drew‘s following smile was devious, almost satanic. “You get the main prize.”

He pressed the buzzer, which sounded a lot more sinister than usual, and a large cage was lowered down beside him, the chains holding it airborne clanking and creaking. The person inside clung to the bars for stability as the cage touched solid ground. They caught sight of Ryan across the arena and huffed. “Well, it’s about time.”

Ryan smiled, pleased to see his best friend unharmed. “Colin. How are you doing?”

“Oh, I’m just dandy,” the Canadian replied. “I’m locked in a cage dressed like a woman. I feel like I’m on display at a freak show.” The look on Colin’s face was hard not to laugh at. Ryan failed miserably and Chip followed suit, snorting. Colin looked unamused. “Well, I’m glad you think it’s so funny.”

“Sorry,” Ryan said sincerely, walking up to where Colin was confined. “Don’t worry, Col. I’ll get you out, I’ll win you back.”

Colin sighed. “I know you will.”

“If we could continue?” Drew interrupted, tapping his clawed fingers rhythmically onto the ground in boredom. “I haven’t got all day, I have yoga soon.”

Chip looked up at him bemused. “What?”

“Er… I mean football. Cleveland’s playing today.” Drew hoped his glasses could hide his shifty, nervous eyes. They didn’t, and Chip laughed again.

Ryan took his place in the centre of the arena with his trusty steed by his side. He wondered if he could successfully pull off improv in this kind of absurd situation, even whilst in a trippy dream. In just a short while, he’d find out.

“First game: Ninety-Second Alphabet. The horse can help you on this one,” Drew announced with a grin.

Ryan groaned. Even though he was quite good at that game, it was always a strain to complete all twenty-six letters in only ninety seconds. He nodded, accepting it anyway. The letter D was the starting point, and Drew held the stopwatch. With little preparation, the game suddenly began.

“Do you believe this dream? I’m going insane here.”

“Everyone has weird dreams sometimes.” Chip shrugged.

“For the most time, those dreams are chemically induced.”

“Geez, would you calm down?”

“Ha ha. “Calm down.” My brain’s not functioning properly!”

“It’s fine, for goodness sake! Now get on with the game.”

“Just my luck, I dream about improv.”

“Keep on about that and I’ll give you a slap.”

“Likely story. You can’t even stand on two legs.”

One minute left.

“May I remind you whose dream this is?”

“Now who needs the slap?”

“Oh, fair point. I’ll shut up about that.”

“Please do. I‘m in the middle of panicking.”

“Quit worrying! You‘ll breeze through just fine. ”

“Really? When else have I had to perform or die?”

“Stop it, now you’re being silly.”

“That’s rich coming form a talking horse.”

“Understandable.”

“Very.”

Thirty seconds left.

“What else do you dream about then?”

“… X-rated stuff, sometimes.”

Chip blinked at him. “You‘re serious?”

“Zestful stuff, actually.”

“Are you sure you need dream therapy? Sounds normal to me.”

“Believe me, I definitely do.”

“Can you tell me about these dreams sometime? He he he…”

“Don’t go there.”

The menacing buzzer coursed through the otherwise silent air, causing the two performers to flinch slightly.

“Not bad at all,” came Drew’s verdict, his tail swinging hypnotically behind him, possibly in annoyance. Ryan let out a long relived sigh and made a not-so-subtle thumbs up to Colin who had started eating some conveniently-placed popcorn.

The next stage was Questions Only, another game that instantly filled Ryan with dread. He sucked in a breath, let it out slowly then began.

“Are my fries done yet?”

Chip looked back at him puzzled for a split second, then it clicked. “What fries, sir?”

“Don’t you remember me asking you?”

“What did you say?”

“’Can I have some fries please?’”

At that point, Drew began to laugh and Ryan was surprised to hear Colin giggle as well. This spurred him on.

“When was this?”

“How dumb are you?”

“Why are you insulting me, sir?”

“You see anyone else for me to pick on?”

“What’s with the personal attacks?”

“Can I see the manager please?”

“Why would you want to do that?”

“You wanna start with me?”

“Start what?”

“… Damn!”

That infernal buzzer, combined with a dragon’s evil laughter, echoed around the arena. “Fail!” Drew boomed, delighting in the dominance he held. “One more and your toast.” The laughter then turned into high-pitched giggles, Drew’s usual form of amusement.

Ryan glared at Chip who just looked back in a ‘What did I do?’ sort of way.

“The last round’s just for you, Ryan.” Drew shuffled the cards on his desk, getting them into a neat pile as he smiled down at the tall man. As he announced the last game, the word seemed to drip from his fangs like a venom that caused a clench in Ryan‘s heart.

“Hoedown.”

A single telepathic message became foremost in both Ryan and Colin’s minds; Ryan hated Hoedown. That was common knowledge, but if he failed at this one, it’d all be over. Metaphorically, of course. This was still all just a dream.

Out of nowhere, the familiar piano began to play and Ryan’s throat closed up in terror. He looked over at Chip, who looked back in hope, nodding. Desperately trying to tap into his comedy instincts, Ryan closed his eyes, inhaled sharply and went for it.

I can’t believe I’m dreaming about something like this,
I’ve finally gone insane, I’m going ‘round the twist.
And if you fail me now, don’t think that I’ll have class,
‘Cos I’ll march to that desk of yours and kick your scaly ass.

Now where did that one come from? He wasn’t sure, but Drew had suddenly burst out into those giggles again, tears rolling down crimson red cheeks. Chip was on the floor and Colin was just grinning like an idiot, face pressed up to the bars of the cage. Ryan smiled back at him, pleased with himself.

“I hope that means I win,” Ryan said blandly, which just made Drew laugh harder. The big beast was in such a good mood, he didn’t even acknowledge him. He simply hit the confining cage once with his tail and the whole thing fell apart, freeing the prisoner. Ryan looked on as Colin stepped out and stretched, Drew disappearing down a hole, meanwhile. Still laughing.

Colin walked straight up to his saviour, grinning from ear to ear. “Now, that was just showing off.”

“You okay?” asked Ryan, patting his friend on the shoulder.

“Yeah, I’m good.” He looked down at his long blue dress and snorted. “I need a change of clothes though.”

Ryan leered closer, wiggling his eyebrows. “Can I watch?”

Colin just blinked, bemused. “Ryan!”

The tall man shrugged. “It’s my dream. I’m crazy.”

“Okay then. I hope you don’t remember this in the morning.” Colin gave him no chance as he grabbed Ryan by the collar and crushed their lips together. It was over in a matter of seconds and that was just enough time for Ryan’s awareness to fly away, go to Tibet, then come back.

They looked at each other for a bit, then Chip snorted.

“I hate to break up this romance,” he said, dryly, “but you think we could go now? I want to talk to that sassy unicorn again.”

Ryan rolled his eyes. “Fine. I have to get back to sanity land, anyway.”

“I hope there’s room for two in sanity land,” Colin piped up, smiling slowly.

The hero climbed up onto his horse, pulling his princess up to sit behind him, holding tightly so he wouldn‘t fall. “Always.”

Chip reared up in excitement, whinnying loudly. He failed to notice Ryan and Colin sliding off his back and falling to the ground. As soon as his back hit the hard floor, a flash of white suddenly exploded in front of him, a shout coming from his throat.

~~~

*THUD!*

Ryan landed onto the soft carpeting of his bedroom with a sharp yelp. Apparently, he had simply rolled out of bed.

“What’re you doing, Ry?” The sound of his wife’s voice startled him at first, but he soon relaxed, realising where he was. He shook his head sharply and laughed nervously.

“Weird dream.”

I’ll say.

The End
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