Pickles is the first victim to succumb to the “love drug”
“Winter. Storm. Wind. Blowing. Lightning. Strikes. Thunder. Storm. Thunder. Storm. Raa!” The venue of the headlining Dethklok band was riveting with drenched moshing fans. Thunder booms and lightning exposed the faces of the members of the heavy metal band who wailed on their guitars and demanded a drum solo. Hair whipping proved less dramatic with the soaking rain dampening their hair to their faces, and the black paint around their eyes oozed down the band members’ cheeks. Heavy blowing winds knocked over the stands of food vendors crushing concert goers in its path. Another strike of lightning caught the stage aflame. Nathan Explosion whipped his soggy hair and roared,
“It’s freezing cold. I’m soaking wet. The skies aflame with lightning bolts. I hear the cries of fallen angels. There is no time for your defeat. There’s demons dancing at my feet. Inside I cry. I want to die. The thunderstorms are roaring yet.”
Lightning strikes a fan dead but the moshers scream and holler demanding more. Skwisgaar falls to his knees lifting his black and white guitar up in the air, sparks flying from his fingertips as he delivers a mind-blowing solo while Nathan roars and growls on stage.
“It’s time to die. You cannot try. The lightning strikes your mother dead. Raa!”
“G-Gee, that was a h-h-hell of a sh-show!” said Toki who shivered in a blanket by the fireplace and coughed, “B-but I wish we didn’t have to play in a f-freaking f-freezing thunderstorm.” Skwisgaar tsked.
“Buts yous were by the flames on the stage,” bickered Skwisgaar, “I hads to dos a solos in de ****ing cold, you asshats.”
“Shut up! I was not!” Toki wailed.
“No, you shuts up! Yous so were!”
“Shut it!” growled Nathan, “We put on a show of a lifetime. It was worth it, wasn’t it?”
“Hellsh yeah!” shouted Murderface, “Sh-eriously, it wash sho ****ing aweshome. I only wish thish shtupid phone washn’t sho shtupid. Why do we have shuch shtupid ideash when we’re drunk?” Murderface clenched the pointy metal cell phone in his hand and stared at it with disgust. Charles, the multi-talented Dethklok manager, entered the living room with a tray full of steaming mugs and the members of Dethklok jumped up in excitement.
“This should perk you up on a cold winter day,” said Charles kindly and the members of Dethklok grabbed a mug. Nathan gulped it down and spit it out in a dramatic fashion.
“The **** is this?” growled Nathan angrily.
“It’s tea,” said Charles simply with a frown, “black tea.”
“Black tea? Brutal,” said Nathan with a devious grin, “But if it’s black tea, then why is it yellow? That’s not brutal at all. Brutal tea should be black like my soul.” Pickles scoffed as he walked across the living room,
“Nathan, you have no soul.”
“I do too,” grumbled Nathan, “and it’s as cold and brutal as my black heart.”
The dwarf made his way through the ventilation system. He passed the kitchen where the zombified servants prepared the band’s meal. The warm, inviting smells of roasted pig and caramelized apples wafted into the ventilation ducts, and the dwarf smiled, gun in his hand, with the knowledge that the decadent, satisfying meal may be the band’s last. The dwarf moved forward, his tiny legs thudding against the metal, and he stopped when he heard the zombified servant bellow a cry of confusion. The dwarf waited a long and quiet moment before moving on. He made past the bedroom where clothes laid strewn about and the bed left unkempt, before reaching his destination, the living room. He stopped in deep thought, considering the most discreet way to get onto the floor as he listened to the gentleman below.
“Pickles, alls I’m saying is there’s no needs for it,” Skwisgaar argued angrily. Pickles huffed and stomped towards the other side of the room.
“You have no idea what you’re talking about, Skwisgaar. I’m tired of you telling me what to do all the effing time.” Pickles crossed his arms and stared at Skwisgaar through the reflection in the mirror, grumbling, “Really ****ing tired of–Ow!” Pickles grasped his neck with his hand, feeling a sharp pain with the likes of a large bee sting.
“You asshat, Skwisgaar! What is your prob–?” Pickles fixated on his changing reflection, stars exploding and vivid colors flashing in his widening eyes as he looked at himself with a warm, glowing sensation radiating deep inside his chest. His mouth dropped, admiring the cherry red cornrows he once doubted as frizzy and unkempt. Rows of crimson roses, flowing velvet hair in the wind, cruising down the highway with his highschool sweetheart beside him caressing him ever so softly, the engine revving louder, freedom ringed in his ears. She kissed his chapped lips as they are now in his reflection, tugged the piercings on his eyebrows, whispered softly in his ear, and nuzzled his neck. The drums pounded deep in his chest. Were they drums? He felt the faint wailing of a guitar, the low growling, the song of hatred leave his soul and in place an all-powerful mesmerizing sensation of mystical wonder. He touched the mirror, lost in the image and his chest swelled with a growing pride. Once the center of mockery, the confidence that had been stolen from him years ago had regained itself and demanded him a constant attention of neediness. The disregard from his apathetic mother, the struggle of the hallways in his school days, the loss of his home, the band his only inclusion in his life at the cost of the daily belittlement, even the music, became a forgotten nothingness. The music was a distant memory, drum solos a distorted sound in his head, his bandmates a blur, what were their names again? He couldn’t look away from the image of undeniable beauty. He was in love.
“Yeahs, Pickles, yous keeps your mouth shuts,” grumbled Skwisgaar, “I’s swears, yous so sensitives sometimes. Alls I trying to do is help yous but no, yous rather do its the hardest ways. Pickles? Are yous even listenings to me? Pickles!” The members of Dethklok turned to Pickles who smiled dopily at himself in the mirror, giggling softly to himself.
“Whatsh sho funny Picklesh?” asked Murderface with a scowl, “Whatsh wrong with you?”
Glancing at the others, Skwisgaar approached Pickles who traced himself in the reflection with his finger and started kissing the mirror much to the rest of the band’s dismay. Skwisgaar waved his hand in front of the ginger and whistled twice for his attention. Pickles ignored the blonde, giggling and hugging the mirror. Skwisgaar looked at Nathan and shrugged.
“I has guessed he’s caughts a cold.” Nathan stomped across the room in a fury.
“Pickles, enough!” Nathan roared. With great force, Nathan yanked Pickles by the arm pulling him away, but a high-pitched scream caught Nathan by surprise and he let go. Pickles raced back to the mirror to coo at his reflection. Nathan and the members of Dethklok exchanged nervous glances. Toki pointed at Pickles and asked Nathan,
“Hey, what’s that thing on his neck?” Nathan looked at the ginger and retrieved a tiny dart from his neck. He cringed at Pickles who was kissing his reflection again, and examined the tiny red and black dart closely before turning to Charles.
“Charles,” Nathan growled, “Analyze this. Find out what this is and who did this to Pickles. Whatever it is, it brainwashed Pickles somehow. Go!”
“Yes, sir, I’m on it,” said their manager, “I’ll get to the bottom of this.”