nsync in black and white

Fiction by Pen . . . . . not real, made up, purely intended for entertainment

Almost Like Calvin and Hobbes

I have borrowed from 'Calvin and Hobbes' by Bill Watterson, because they are wonderful.

For the third time in twenty minutes, Chris bounced off the table in pursuit of the powerball he'd sent zinging round the bus's too-small cabin. Lance grabbed protectively for his laptop. "Quit running around crashing into things or I'll sell you to the monkey house!" he howled.

Pissed-off Lance was, unfortunately for Lance, more entertaining than minding-his-own-businesses Lance, and Chris was bored. Justin had switched buses. Justin, Chris knew, was trying to hatch some elaborate scheme of revenge with Joey; hence the non-presence of Justin and the increasingly menacing presence of Lance on the Fun Bus. Justin's plan was doomed to failure, of course, because if you were plotting elaborate revenge, then Lance was your man. Joey lacked the killer instinct. The only one of them less capable of vengeance than Joey was JC, who was about as fierce as a kitten.

Chris wasted no time worrying about Justin's scheme. Chris did not regret the grape jelly. There had been a most gratifying squish-and-shriek payoff, sneakers were washable, and J would come around soon enough. But for now...

Chris bounced the powerball off Lance's skull. And again. And again.

And again.

And again.

And again.

And again.


Triumph! With a bellow like an enraged raptor, Lance surged out of his seat and pursued Chris through the bus.

On the couch, JC slept.

* * *

The toaster was emitting smoke. It wasn't supposed to do that. Titanic struggle ensued, from which machine emerged victorious, contemptuously disgorging two charcoaled slices, the last of the loaf.

Chris sighed. "When you think how well basic appliances work," he observed, "it's hard to believe anyone ever gets on an airplane." He stared forlornly at the toast. "Man, now I'm really not looking forward to going home anymore."

Behind him, JC yawned, and reached into the fridge. Chris stared in disapproval as JC began digging a fork into a bowl of tuna mayonnaise. "That," he stated flatly, "is not breakfast food."

"No, but hey. Protein. Lunch? Anyway, you used all the bread."

* * *

Chris was lurking among the costume rails when JC loped in and started absentmindedly stretching in front of the mirror. His pitifully inadequate T-shirt revealed even more toned midriff when his arms were held high and his head was back. His muscles moved so beautifully under his skin, everything flowed. It was graceful. Sorta feline. The stretches developed into shimmies, then JC did that thing where his shoulders coathangered and the rest of him hung down and rippled like silk in a breeze. JC should be reclassified as a liquid, Chris thought.

* * *

With Justin still watching his every move with Rottweiler-like suspicion, and Lance too determinedly boring to be worth bothering, Chris decided to entertain himself with Joey. This was always a last resort, since Joey's easy-going nature meant he was more likely to laugh at Chris's pranks than to react in more satisfactory ways. But the thing with the Superman costume was gratifyingly effective.

Exhausted from the effort of provoking Joey into violent retribution, Chris took refuge in the quiet room. He had been there for several minutes before he realised there was someone snoozing on the couch, like a rather bony cushion.

Irritated by this lack of attention, Chris poked JC until blue eyes opened and looked blankly up at him.

"What are you doing in here?" JC said sleepily.

"Why, are you taking a survey?"

JC re-coiled himself on the couch and closed his eyes. Chris poked him again.

"Dude, why do you sleep so much?"

"I like to be rested when things start to happen."

Huh. That made more sense than Chris had expected. He was a little disconcerted to see that JC had not closed his eyes again. JC was smiling, yet something in his expression seemed to say 'predator'. Unsettled, Chris slid towards the door. Joey had probably forgotten about him by now.

* * *

Nobody else seemed to have noticed what was up with JC. True, he was doing all the things he usually did—sleeping a lot, snuggling up to be petted, giggling goofily, getting hard on stage—but there was something going on, Chris knew. He could tell. He could see it when JC was draped over Joey's shoulder like a doped cat, and when Lance picked JC up by the scruff of the neck to retrieve the pile of papers JC had been snoozing on, and when JC made little clawing gestures and rrroaw sounds at Justin's mention of the new makeup girl. There was something underneath all that cuteness, something in the way JC's innocent blue eyes looked at Chris, that wasn't innocent or cute at all, it was something way different. Something that hinted at hidden power and, and ambushes, and being eaten in the dark.

Chris found himself checking round corners, and standing with his back to the wall when JC was in the same room.


Joey was his roommate tonight, so Chris should be safe. Which was good. Definitely. He edged cautiously out of the elevator, peered along the corridor, and decided the coast was clear. Opened the door to his room, groped for the light switch, and—


—found himself tumbled helplessly onto the nearest soft surface.


Turned out JC was a tiger in bed.



Back to Popslash Index
Back to Alternative Popslash Index