“Pickle? You-hoos. Pickly Pickles. You snap-ped out of it okay. Nnnow. Now. Nooow.” Toki shook the drummer who was entranced in his reflection. Toki looked at Nathan with a frown.
“Well, gee, Nate, he is out of his head and I don’t know the problem with him or what we do now. You gots any ideals?”
“Shyeah, I gotsh an ideash,” said Murderface who approached the mirror and with swift force smashed the mirror to pieces. The Dethklok band members jumped back with their mouths agape as Pickles began to scream. The screams grew louder and louder as the drummer spun in circles with his hands to his face.
“I s-WHAT. -E. DO?” Toki screamed to Nathan, their words drowned out by the incessant screaming.
“Sh-urr-p!” Murderface screamed to them. Nathan pointed his finger in the air with a certain look and marched out of the room with haste. Skwisgaar looked at the three of them and mumbled something.
“WHAT?” Toki and Murderface yelled as Pickles continued his screaming. Skwisgaar mumbled again.
“Sh-e -n’t -ere, -ou, dou-ag” Murderface yelled. Nathan returned with a small square cosmetic mirror.
“-Gots -is -ou -of -gir-nds -urse.”
“WHAT?” Nathan waved the mirror in front of Pickles. The drummer looked upon the mirror and slowly his screams ceased and he was once again enthralled in his reflection, cooing to it softly.
“What the fuck wash that?” Murderface exclaimed, his eyes wide.
“Skwisgaar, you said something?” Toki asked his bandmate.
“Ah, yeah, I was, you know, saying that he was loud and it hurted my ears, you know. But, you couldn’t hear me, you know, and, well, I do not like to shout.”
“Thank god he shtopped shcreaming. Quick thinking, Nathan.”
“Yeah, well, I remembered my ex-girlfriend had one in her purse.”
“You went through her purse?” scoffed Skwisgaar.
“Yeah, well, uh, she’s dead, you know. She never came out of the coma.”
“Didn’t the doctor says she would have woken up hadn’t you not pulled the plug on her?”
“Yeah, well uh, it doesn’t matter now. Someone attacked Pickles and he’s in trouble. We have to help him.”
“But we don’ts know what is trouble with him,” said Skwisgaar, “Maybe he becomes narciss-,narciss-sis, narc, narcis-narcississ.”
“Ugh, do you need to be, you know, grammar Nazi all the times, or somethings like that?”
“Yeah,” added Toki, “I don’ts need to be reminded of my Norwegian accent every day, you know?”
“Ja,” replied Skwisgaar, “It’s not fair to be so foreign and learn new language and expected to be perfect, you know?”
“I think maybe if–”
“But maybes we won’t suck so much at the Englishman if–”
“Oh, you just do not knows the struggle of having second language in English.”
“YOU GUYS!” The two foreigners hushed and looked to Nathan whose face was grim.
“I’ve just been informed by Christopher that there are spies among us.” Toki and Skwisgaar pointed to each other with dirty looks.
“No, not you, you douchebags.”
“Oh, it is relief!”
“Ja, so worried for one moment, you know!”
“Christopher has something to say.” Christopher, the multi-talented Dethklok manager, stood beside Nathan and looked to the Dethklok band.
“You see, boys, it will take some time to revive Pickles with an antidote. It appears that someone had snuck into the ventilation ducts last night and shot Pickles with a poisonous dart. The poison, however, is new to me and I cannot say what it is composed of. All we know is that whoever is struck with the dart will fall madly in love with the first person they see.”
“Oh my!” exclaimed Toki, “So Pickle is in love with himself?”
“It appears so,” Christopher replied gravely, “And it will take some time before I can procure the antidote, if at all. It may take some time before Pickles can be cured. But, I cannot stress enough to be all on guard. If you see anything suspicious, let me know.”
“You do not know who did the poisonous dart that struck Pickles with the love drug?” Skwisgaar asked.
“I do not, unfortunately. With four of you on guard, I am sure we can catch whoever did this to Pickles. Keep your eyes peeled.”
“Do you know what I think when I think I hear the thing they say, ‘Keep your eyes peeled?’” Toki asked quietly, adding, “Lemons.”
“Toki, why are you so weird all the time? Pickles is brainwashed and you think of lemons.”
“Actshually,” commented Murderface, “Lemons sound really good right now.”
“Yeah,” replied Nathan, “Any of you want a lemon drop?”
Nathan and Murderface sat naked in the hot tub with lemon drops in their hand. Skwisgaar flipped through a magazine on the couch while Toki played a game on the computer. Pickles traced his face in the cosmetic mirror and made kissing faces at his reflection.
“Hey Picklesh, go fuck yourshelf!” Murderface yelled with a laugh.
“We shouldn’t let our guard down,” Nathan spoke with concern, “But damn, I haven’t had lemon drops in forever.”
“Aren’t lemon dropsh gay, like Picklesh ish gay for himshelf? Ha!”
“You know, when you fall in love with yourself, Murder, I bets you freak out trying to give yourself the blow job,” laughed Skwisgaar. Toki fixated on his videogame but added,
“Yeah, I bet you’re next. Gah! I lost again. Skwisgaar, why ist this game hard for me?”
“Not as hard as Pickles for himself, ha ha!” Toki jumped onto the couch beside Skwisgaar and folded his arms.
“Stupid computer game. I lose at all the games I have ever played on stupid computer. It’s so stupid.”
The dwarf crawled on the carpet floor, past the mess hall where the Dethklok employees munched on snacks, past the kitchen where the sewn-together chef prepared steak, past the band members’ bedrooms, all with nothing to hinder him from his destination. He made it to the living room and hid behind a stuffed grizzly bear. The dwarf had been beaten when Dethklok was not stopped with his first victim, but his master had reassured him that with all the members of Dethklok under the influence of the love drug, he would succeed in his duty. His master was a mysterious one. He knew nothing of him nor his past, only that the dwarf would be rewarded with glory and jewels. The dwarf loathed Dethklok and their schemes of a global takeover. It was his mission to end the band and their devious ways. He pulled out his poisonous dart gun and took aim.
“Maybe you is stupid, Toki. I have beaten all games on the computer, and you cannot get past the level of the first? Maybe you just suck.”
“Yeah, jusht like Picklesh shucks his own fucking dick.”
“Oh, shuts it in upward direction, William.”
“I hate being called by my firsht name, Skwishgarrsh. Shtop it.”
“I is not stupid, Skwisgaar! Maybe you has too much of the free time.”
“Ja, and you are so busy making the model of the airplane that you forget how to–OW!” Skwisgaar clutched his neck.
“Toki, I have had the final straw in the hay with–” Toki looked at him with concern.
“Skwisgaar? Skwisgaar, you okay? Skwis–” Skwisgaar flung himself at Toki, screaming,
“Make me your slave, Toki-san!”
“Nathan!” Toki screamed, “He’s been shot! He’s been shot! He’s been shot with the–OW!” Skwisgaar fell on Toki who looked up at the blonde with the utmost shock, his eyes growing as wide as saucers.
Toki shivered on the lonely corner, his lips and fingertips blue from standing for hours on end in the frozen bleakness. Not a horse-drawn carriage in sight, the flame-flickering light post drawing to its end, the flame inside flickering out. His parents demanded of him to bring home cabbage. A slap across the face was yesterday’s punishment when no one stopped to tip him change. When the light flickered out his eyes welled with tears, anticipating the bruises for another day without providing a meal of cabbages for his poor family. Surely, he was regarded with more than a glance when the man in the suit passed him or when the bourgeois sisters laughed and sang to one another as they passed him? Could not a poor boy of ten be recognized as one in need? He was hungry, drabbly and disheveled, how could they pass him and not feel the heartache in his chest, the hunger in his belly, the sorrow in his puffy, tear-stricken eyes? He coughed. Will his parents pick him up from the farm or leave him all night in the cold again in their disappointment, distraught from the failure of their good-for-nothing son? Tears streamed down his face, and he kicked the light post in anger and fear. He looked up when he heard a faint cry in the distance and squinted his eyes. It was an old shed. It was likely a cat crying inside, but something inside him told him to investigate. He approached the forsaken shed and recognized that the cries were not of a cat but of a human’s. He approached the door and heard sorrowful sobbing. He paused, suddenly uneasy as not to scare whomever was inside, and felt obliged to knock three times. The cries stopped for a brief moment, but then a wail echoed from the shed. Toki cautiously opened the door. A fair-haired boy of twelve, his blonde locks past his chin, cried alone in the shed. Toki looked around. He saw the red sack, the stick, a dirty pot with a poor amount of change inside, a loaf of bread.
“You are a runaway!” the ten-year-old Toki exclaimed. The boy looked up at him, panicked.
“I’s, I’s, you know, you know nothing!” retorted the blonde defensively. Toki looked about the shabby shed, the roof exposed and the cold floor draped with a ratted sheet and a pillowcase stuffed with hay, and then at the boy, who looked at him with fear. The two boys were silent, staring at each other with frightened curiosity, until the features on the blonde boy’s face softened and the boy flung his arms around Toki and sobbed.
“Mama, my mama! She does not love me!” the boy wailed, crying into the brown-haired boy’s shoulder. He continued,
“I runs away so she cannot find me. If my father, my father, if he finds me, I is as good as is dead!” Toki held onto the distraught boy with a frown.
“You are here alone, little blonde boy?” The boy sniffled.
“I has no brothers or sisters to look after. My ma, she does not care. My pa, he beats me with belt and sometimes his fists. I has no where to go, but I cannot live with my ma or my pa no mores! I has to runs away, I cannot go back. Last time, police found me, my pa, oh my pa in his rage!” The boy wailed again and hugged the brown-haired boy tighter.
“Then I shall run away with you, so you are not so alone on such a cold night as this. My pa and my ma beat me also. If we not make money, our farm will be sold and we will all go hungry. I sit by light post so people tip money for cabbage. I am so hungry. I have been sitting by post for hours and no money for cabbage has come for us.” The blonde boy reached for the loaf and something inside his sack.
“I has loaf, and I has apples. If you stay and eat apple with me I will be good friend to you and take good care of you for always.”
“What is your name, little blonde boy?”
“I am called Skwisgaar. What is the name of you?”
“I am Toki from the Wartooth family. It is so nice to meet a boy who is so much like me. I will stay and run away with you, and the two of us, you and me, will be friends forever, okay, Skwisgaar?”
Toki and Skwisgaar locked lips and fell under entrancement, wrapping their arms around one another fighting for dominance they entangled themselves on the couch.
“Aw, shit!” Murderface exclaimed.
“Right under our fucking noses,” Nathan growled.
“Look, a midget! Get him!”
“Uh, now, now, Murder, he cannot help being a midget. He is a, uh, miniaturely-challenged adult.”
“Fuck political correctness, he’s the one who attacked Pickles! Get him!” The two men charged for the dwarf. Nathan gripped the dwarf by the throat and slammed him against the wall.
“Alright, now don’t play games with me. Who are you and what have you done to my friends?” The dwarf smiled, blew a raspberry at them, then pointed a gun at himself and shot himself, his brains spewing over the wall.
“Oh god, Skwisgaar.”
“Christopher!” The multi-talented manager ran into the living room and his jaw dropped at the sight of Pickles kissing his reflection and Toki and Skwisgaar making out on the couch.
“They got Toki and Skwisgaar,” Nathan grumbled, “And we caught the midget, but he killed himself. I swear to god it’s up to you, Christopher, to find that antidote.”
“I’ve been working on it,” Christopher said, “But it will take some time. You and Murderface are the only two left, you’re our only hope while I fix up this antidote. Please, please don’t get shot.”
“What do we do?” asked Nathan, “I hope there’s still time left before we all fall under this spell.”