And because it's Wednesday, that means it's time for some flash fiction! I hope you're enjoying our weekly excursion into the world of flashing! I know we are!
Last week, Dallas had the misfortune to stumble on the very man that he caught Quentin Mandrake cheating on him with! Can this end well for poor Dallas and Campbell? Find out in this week's installment, then see what's happening with the other Briefers! Enjoy!
Dallas in Wonderland II: Chapter Seventeen
“Do I know Doctor Levi?” the imbecile parroted, to Dallas’ annoyance. The man began to stroke a non-existent beard on his pointy chin, as if debating the question with himself.
“Well, do you?” Dallas asked, his growing irritation showing.
“Maybe,” came his evasive answer. “Doesn’t everyone?” Without warning, he tossed the rod he’d been holding into the pond and stood, dusting off his pants with his hands. “What exactly are you doing here, Dallas? I can tell you’re over Quentin, aren’t you?” He eyed Campbell with renewed interest. “What’s your name, cutie?” He reached one hand toward Campbell’s cheek, a strange gleam in his eye.
Without thinking, Dallas karate-chopped Penn’s arm before it got anywhere near Campbell. Expecting the man to protest his treatment, Dallas was surprised to hear him chuckle. “Much as I thought. And here Quentin thought you were pining for the good doctor? Won’t he be surprised to learn you’ve moved from him both of them?”
“I have not,” Dallas protested. “I mean... that is... Campbell’s not...” He gave up all efforts to explain himself to the home-wrecker, rationalizing it was none of the little rat’s business anyway.
Suddenly Penn sneezed, three times in rapid succession, before wiping his sleeve across his nose. “Sorry. I might be getting a cold,” he apologized. “Now, where were we?” Oh yes, I was just about to compliment the two of you on having a pair of very nice plush rumps...”
Dallas groaned. This was getting them nowhere fast. No wonder Quentin was attracted to him. They were birds of a feather.
Not to mention this was getting them nowhere fast. And Penn was simply an annoying...
Wait just a damn minute. Dallas’ head began to throb. He put one hand against his temple.
“Are you all right, sugar?” Campbell’s voice was concerned.
“What’s the matter with me? What the hell, Campbell? Why is this little prick even in Wonderland? How is he here?”
“He must have come the same way we did, don’t you think?”
“Exactly. And he can prove, once and for all, that I’m not crazy. Wonderland exists!”
Penn began to back away from them, hands held up as if to ward them off. “Well, fellas, it’s been swell, but I have to—”
Dallas waited for the next word, which he assumed would be go, but when it didn’t come he glanced at him in surprise, only to find Campbell’s arm securely about Penn’s throat.
There was a certain satisfaction in the sight. Dallas counted to ten before he said, “I think he needs to breathe, Campbell.” Not that Dallas really cared if the little rat was able to draw breath or not.
Campbell released him, and he slumped to the ground, rubbing his neck, panting loudly. “This... isn’t... real,” he gasped. “None of this. Not me, not you. Not even tall, dark, and sexy there. You’re imagining everything because you’re a loon—”
“No, no, no, don’t say it,” Dallas moaned. If he didn’t hear the word, it couldn’t be true. He wasn’t, he wasn’t, he wasn’t... He wanted to curl up into a ball, he wanted to hide, he wanted the world to go away...
He wasn’t aware he was crying, his body shaking with great racking sobs, until he felt Campbell’s arms envelop him, Campbell’s soothing voice murmuring into his ear.
“Shhh, shhh, don’t listen to him, honey, don’t listen.” Campbell sounded distraught. Dallas fought against the urge to retreat into himself, to disappear and never face the world ever again.
Little by little, Dallas grew calmer, brought his breathing under control. They were sitting on the ground near the pond. He could see the flowers around them, still waving, dipping their red and orange heads, almost as if expressing sympathy for Dallas’ distress. But that wasn’t possible, was it?
He took a deep breath and looked up into Campbell’s concerned face. “Why do you put up with me?” he whispered. “I’m a fucking mess. A complete fucking mess.”
“No, and don’t you dare say that, Dallas Crosby. You’re a very special man, and you don’t deserve to be put through this hell. We’re going to find our way home, and we’re going to take proof that this place exists. Something better than the word of that little worm. But if I catch him, I’m gonna put a world of hurt on his dumb cracker ass...”
What? Had Penn taken advantage of Dallas’ breakdown to run away? Didn’t that just figure?
“It’s my fault he got away, it’s my...”
Dallas’ words were stopped by Campbell’s lips, and for a long moment, he simply breathed Campbell in, drawing strength from him. When they separated, he felt a pang of regret.
“He was useless as tits on a chicken anyway, honey. Guys like him are born liars. No one would have believed him, even supposing he did tell the truth.
“You know, I think there is really just one place where we can find the evidence we’re looking for. The Queen’s Palace.”
“You mean your nutty ex? That queen?” Campbell asked.
“Yeah, that queen. I think all the answers are there. We just have to find them.”
“Then that’s where we’ll go,” Campbell said decisively. “Shouldn’t be too hard to find someone who can point us out the way to the palace.”
“You wouldn’t think so,” Dallas agreed. Of course, in a land such as this, you never knew what you might get.
Time to pull himself together. Again. He reluctantly rose from the warmth of Campbell’s body, then offered his hand to help his friend to rise. For some reason, he didn’t want this moment to end.
“Campbell,” he began, so softly Campbell had to lean in to hear him. “I don’t know how to begin to thank you... for everything... you mean more to me than I can ever express. I think I might be—”
“Ah, there you are, Dallas. I was beginning to worry you hadn’t made it.”
Dallas’ eyes widened.
to be continued
Now see what the other Briefers are up to!