A hand shot out from under the thick comforter and felt along the side table, slapping down on the snooze button. A shock of black hair peeked out from under the warmth of the blankets. Five more minutes and he'd get up.
Twenty minutes later, Stan peeked out from under the blankets again. f*ck. He threw the covers back over his head, and contemplated for a full thirty seconds telling his mom he was too sick to go to school. It wouldn't be that far from the truth. If he curled up enough under the blankets he could probably feel his stomach turning in on itself. But two years later, he had used the faking sick due to nausea enough times no one took it seriously anymore.
With almost inhuman effort, Stan threw off his blankets and sat up. He clasped his arms around himself; didn't anyone turn on the heaters in the mornings around here? The clock said 7:22am and if Stan wasn't out the door in three minutes he'd be stuck walking to school. Dealing with a bumpy bus ride while hungover would be barely tolerable, but walking to school hung over would be impossible. He'd pass out on the side of the road and probably suffer some kind of horrible hypothermia that may or may not lead to a 40,000+ word adventure. But faking sick with being hungover wouldn't fly either. Stan hadn't tried that one yet, but his dad never seemed to get away with it.
No time for a shower, Stan quickly changed and threw on his jacket and hat. Passing by his desk, he grabbed the report he and Kyle had due today off the printer and shoved it into his backpack. He flew down the stairs, only stopping briefly to grab a bottled water from the fridge, before tearing out the front door.
Stan turned the corner that lead to the bus stop, just in time to see the last of the students get on and the doors shut. No. He ran as fast as he could to catch up and slapped the sides of the bus and shouted for them to stop. He saw Kyle's green hat poke out of the window. The bus stopped and the doors opened.
Stan dragged himself onto the bus and gratefully slumped down next to Kyle. "Thanks, dude."
"No problem. Are you okay?"
"I'm fine." Stan looked away and took a swig from his water bottle. "The question is, are you okay?"
Now it was Kyle's turn to look away. "Yes."
"Are sure, because yesterday was-"
"Just drop it, Stan. Seriously." Kyle said through clenched teeth.
"Okay." Stan took another drink, hoping the water would hydrate him and not come back up. He didn't want to pry, since Kyle was being super sensitive right now. He didn't want to bring up the subject of Kyle almost dying yesterday. Not that close calls weren't out of the ordinary for the boys, but Kyle had been yanked out of harm's way and been shielded by the fat body of Eric Cartman. Maybe Stan was feeling a bit sensitive as well. Not for the homoeroticism, since only an idiot would draw that conclusion, but hearing the fight afterwards. It was no wonder Stan decided to help himself to the bar after the chaos was over. They had had their most recent adventure in Ireland after all.
Now he was feeling the after effects. Stan licked his lips, his whole body felt so dry. He'd try the water again, but decided against it. If he threw up on the floor of the bus maybe they'd let him go home early, but then he'd never hear the end of it, until someone else did something stupid.
Fourth grade alcoholic problems.
Another fourth grade problem, other than deciding if Eric Cartman would actually grow up to be gay (Kyle said no, Stan said maybe, Kenny said shut up and let's talk about gay ladies instead, who's in for Bebe?) Was homework.
Saving the world was not taken into consideration when stuff was due on Monday. All of the boys held varying GPA's. Kyle's was the best and Cartman's was the worst. Stan was in the middle, his rightful place, though he had been resenting it lately. Due to their adventures twice a week, Kyle now had a B+ and Cartman would probably have to repeat the fourth grade. Stan had his own C haunting him. He wanted to move up with Kyle, not be left behind with Cartman.
Kyle had been tired, or emotionally scarred from yesterday. Stan told him to go home and sleep, he'd take care of their homework. If Kyle thought too hard about it, Stan knew it could turn ugly. An outburst of rage, or more rare, but possibly scarier, a crippling bout of depression.
Stan would try to help by distracting him. He opened his back pack and pulled out his folder. "Here's our homework."
Kyle's eyes flicked from the window as he accepted it. "Oh thanks, knew you could do it." Kyle looked at the paper. Instead of his facial expression turning angry or sad, he looked confused. "You forgot to run this through spell check or something?"
"No I did. I thought I did. What's wrong with it?"" Both boys had done the work in a notebook but it had been Stan's to type.
"Well for one thing you forgot to capitalize your last name, and added a D at the end of your first name. This report was done by Kyle Broflovski and Stand marsh."
Kenny was sitting in the seat across from Stan and Kyle, eavesdropping on their conversation. He was trying to get information on what happened on their third part of their Irish adventure, he missed due to circumstances out of his control. He had to butt in though. "Stan Marsh. Stand marsh. Stand in a marsh. Who the f*ck would want to stand in a marsh? What the hell is a marsh anyway?"
Stan put his hand on his chin, thinking for a moment. "I really don't know. I never gave it much thought. A swamp or something?"
"Somebody Google it!" Kenny said.
"No you guys don't have to." Stan's hand reaching from his chin to the middle of his face.
It was too late because Kyle had whipped out his iPhone. "According to Wikipedia, a marsh is a type of wetland that is dominated by herbaceous rather than woody plant species. Marshes can often be found at the edges of lakes and streams. They are often dominated by grasses, rushes or reeds."
Butters was behind Stan and Kyle. He got up and poked his head over the seat. "I wouldn't like standing in a marsh, fellas. You'd probably get all wet and stinky."
Stan briefly had the image in his mind of him standing in a marsh with Butters, before shoving Butters' head in the swampy water.
Stan sighed and put his hands firmly in his lap. "My first name isn't that bad."
"Well I've never known anyone under forty named Stanley." Kenny said, shrugging. "Besides you of course."
Cartman hadn't cared about the conversation until he heard the right pitch in Stan's voice that he was getting annoyed, then he had the opportunity to strike. "Haha, Stan has an old man's name! A creepy old man's name."
"Come on, there has to be someone cool named Stan. Well someone else. Look up my first name." Stan said, pointing to Kyle again.
"The first result is the Eminem song. I have it on my phone." Kyle pulled up his MP3 player program and turned the song on. "Tea's gone cold and I wonder why, I got out of bed at all..."
"Goddamn you Kyle, and your love for hip hop." Stan sighed, annoyed how the song kept repeating his name.
"You have to branch out from just stuff you hear on Guitar Hero." Kyle shrugged.
"That's a creepy song." Kenny noted.
"Well Stan's a creepy name." Cartman laughed.
Kevin Stoley poked his head up from the back seat in front of the boys. "You've never heard of someone being called a Stan? It's a term used for an obsessive fanatic."
"Oh how do you know that?" Stan snapped.
"My sister calls me a Star Wars Stan." Kevin said quickly before sitting back down again.
"Kevin, goddammit. Fine I have the same name as a slightly creepy song. What else comes up in Google?"
Kyle shut off the song and pulled up his Google search again. "Oh, you won't like this."
"Nothing can be worse than that stupid song."
"Well next hit in Google is you."
"Yeah, Stan Marsh."
"Because no one else would have a name as stupid as Stan Marsh." Cartman laughed.
"Remember that bullying video and later the ziplining video? This news article is about your jacking it in San Diego scandal." Kyle held up two fingers. "Twice."
"Ugh, no more. I don't want to see what else is stupid about my name." Stan held his head in his hands, this wasn't helping his headache.
Kyle put a hand on Stan's shoulder. "Come on, it's not all bad. We can call you Stan the man."
Stan looked up; glad Kyle was always there for him. "I guess you could."
"That doesn't count." Cartman butted in. "Stan is one of the easiest names to rhyme."
"Yeah!" Butters said excitedly. "Stan, man, can."
"It's like a scientific fact." Cartman continued.
"Ran, ban, tan, fan, plan, van.." Butters listed off.
Stan held his hands up. "Okay we get it. Can you guys shut up?"
Butters stopped rhyming. It was a real shame Stan was singled out, though his name was as silly as Butters' own name. But he could help out by changing the subject. "That school project we're doin' sure will be neato, huh?"
"What project?" Kenny asked.
"The one where we stick marshmallows together with tooth picks to make something real neat and sciency. My mom bought me marshmallows and everything." Butters opened his back pack and presented the jumbo bag of marshmallows.
Cartman grabbed the bag and ripped it open, taking a handful for himself. "This is great, Butters. There weren't enough marshmallows in my Lucky Charms this morning."
Butters put his head down. "Aw, Eric. Those were for school."
"It's a jumbo bag, Butters; you'll have plenty left over. Anyone else want some?" Cartman held out the bag. Stan and Kyle frowned at him, but Kenny took a handful.
Butters regained his smile and perked his head up again. "You're right; it is an awfully big bag. So make sure to eat only half of them, okey-doky?"
"Whatever." Cartman turned to sit down; this conversation no longer interested him.
Butters watched Cartman steal his project supplies and Stan crossing his arms grumbling to himself as he finished off his water. Finally Butters piped up again. "You know what else is real funny about the last name Marsh?"
"Oh god." Stan face palmed.
Cartman turned back to the group, a smile on his face. "Go on Butters, I'd love to hear it."
"It kinda sounds like marshmallow." Butters let out a little giggle.
Cartman burst out laughing with his mouth full. "Stan Marshmallow. That's perfect."
"Well your name sounds like butterscotch." Stan shot back.
"Then you two deserve each other. Two sweet dessert names to show off what pussies you are." Cartman stood up on his seat and cupped his hands around his mouth. "Hey everyone, we're calling Stan, Marshmallow from now on."
The bag of marshmallows had dropped on the floor as Butters bent down to pick them up. The bus hit a bump causing Butters to smack his head on the metal bottom of the seat. He cringed looked up expectantly for someone to make fun of him.
Instead Cartman patted Butters on the back. "This is the best thing you've ever come up with. You might be on your way to impressing me one day."
"Neato!" Butters smiled as he rubbed his head. He started a trend. This was his first step to being accepted if he could keep being super creative.
The bus finally arrived at school. The other kids were chanting "Marshmallow Marshmallow" as Stan had his hand over his face as he got off the bus.
Butters had to remain being popular with the guys. He felt kinda bad for poor Stan but he had Kyle to comfort him and stuff. Butters had a new goal today. To keep being one of the fellas, he had to top himself with a better pun off Stan's name.
Butters put his thinking cap on, as he hugged the bag of marshmallows to his chest. He looked up to see the bus was now completely empty, and the school bell was ringing. Oh hamburgers! He didn't want to be left behind and end up at the smelly place where they kept the school busses. Last time he did that his parents had grounded him.
He took his seat in class and glanced to his right. He sat next to Bebe Stevens. She had a nice figure and an even bigger mouth. But the name Bebe was odd in itself, uncommon, but suited her for how extravagant it was. But it was pronounced in a weird way.
Bebe looked up and their eyes met for a moment before Stan looked down. He avoided looking her body, since that would get him in trouble in more ways than one. Instead, he focused on her shoes. Fur lined snow boots, the logo embossed on the side catching his eye. "How do you pronounce the name of your shoes?"
"Not like my name, though I like the brand because of that. Bebe." Bebe smiled and held out her left foot, the boots were a favorite of her collection at the moment.
"Like a buzzing bee?" Stan asked.
"Yes. What, you want to discuss the birds and the bees, Stan?" She let out a little laugh, happy to have a chance to tease like she saw the other boys do to each other.
Stan blinked and sat back in his chair. "What?"
"Hey, Stan." Butters interrupted. "When you go to college are you gonna go to Stanford University?"
"Oh god, not this again." Stan groaned.
"Hey when's your birthday? It is in March?" Butters said a bit louder this time.
"My birthday's in March!" Kenny volunteered from the desk on the other side of Bebe.
Bebe looked at the boys who sat around her, confused out of her mind. "What the hell is wrong with you guys?"
"Don't ask, Bebe. Butters, why don't you go f*ck yourself." Stan turned around in his desk, not wanting to look at any of them. His head hurt and he had a bad taste in his mouth.
"Are you tryin' to do that to Bebe?" Butters asked as he looked over his shoulder, hoping the other boys could over hear him.
"I said, mind your own business, I was curious about her shoes, that's all." Stan heard you could cure a hangover by drinking more alcohol. Judging from the way this day was going this would become a routine for him.
"Why do you care about her shoes all of a sudden? You tryin' to get Bebe to have a one night stand with you?" Butters leaned forward in his desk, giving Bebe a nudge with his elbow.
Bebe recoiled in disgust, hurt once again for trying to make friends with the opposite sex. "What? Is that why you're talking to me? You think I'd do anything with you? I'm not like that!"
Kevin Stoley, who sat behind Stan, was now poking his head on the conversation. "Yeah, leave Bebe alone. She's pretty nice you know."
Bebe looked right at Kevin, who she never noticed before. "Thanks, I think. What was your name again?"
Stan pounded his fist on his desk. "Goddammit, Bebe I'm not trying to flirt with you, Goddammit, Kevin go back to being a one off character and Goddammit, Butters, you better come up with a more creative explanation for why you keep ruining my day than the lame puns you keep trying to make."
Butters kept quiet, wondering if honestly was always the best policy or did he have another stupid pun he could throw at Stan.
Before Butters could make up his mind, the classroom door opened. Mr. Wyland, the substitute entered. Maybe classroom pranks would cheer Stan up.
Mr. Wyland wrote his name on the board and turned to face the class. "Hello, for those of you who don't remember, I am Mr. Wyland. I hope you remember me from almost six months ago. I remember most of the faces of this class but not all of your names."
Faces but not names? Maybe this could go Stan's way after all.
"The lesson plans Mr., Garrison left seemed illegible." Mr. Wyland continued." "So any school work you had to turn in will be postponed until your teacher gets back."
Stan finally looked past Bebe, who probably still thought it was all about her, to Kyle. Kyle pressed his lips in a tight smile as he folded Stan's botched report in half and shoved it into the back of his trapper keeper.
"I thought I'd continue with a curriculum I picked up from substituting at Middle Park Elementary. The students there score much higher on standardized tests. Each of you will work in pairs and pick a country of your choice to do a report on. But I'm not choosing names in alphabetical order, since the kids who have last names near the end always get last choice. I believed in fairness, also this will be a quick way to further the plot." Mr. Wyland looked at the school roster. "Where is, Butters Stotch? Who do you pick as your partner?"
"That's a good one. Standardize Marshmallow!" Butters called out while laughing.
There was a chorus of snickers from boys in the class. Finally Butters was getting attention. Mr. Wyland didn't seem to notice as he looked on his roster. "You mean Stanley Marsh? Fine you two are partners now. What country do you want to do your report on?"
"Why don't you choose, Butters Scotch-Stoch." Stan said in a low voice. "You're so good at coming up with ideas."
"Uhh, Japan!" Butters said, jumping up excitedly in his chair, before sinking down as Stan made a fist.
Mr. Wyland nodded as he picked out another name. "Where is, Kyle Broflovski?"
Before Kyle could answer Kenny sat up at his desk. "Here!"
"Hmm interesting." Mr. Wyland said as he looked down his list. "With a name like Kyle Broflovski I would've expected..."
"Expected what?" Kenny asked.
"It's just from what I'm getting from a name like that...you don't look that particularly Jewish." Mr. Wyland shook his head and set down his clipboard.
Eric Cartman burst out laughing and pounded his fist on top of his desk. He wiped away the tears of joy from his eyes. "A really Jewish name! This is the best day ever!"
"Oh I was adopted, from Canada." Kenny said quickly, trying to shush Cartman, he didn't want to be busted.
"You don't look particularly Canadian either, but this is how teachers get sued." Mr. Wyland shrugged. "Who do you pick as your partner?"
"Kenny McCormick." Kenny said, looking over at Kyle.
Kyle was trying not to lash out at Cartman, in defense of Kenny's fake Canadian Jewishness. It took a moment for him to realize what Kenny was doing. "Oh um, here, I guess."
"What country do you choose?"
"Israel." Kenny said at the same time Kyle said. "Canada."
"What is it, boys?"
"Ah, Germany." Kenny said, as Kyle frowned at him. "What? We can do our report on Amsterdam, Kenny!"
"But Kyle, Amsterdam is in... you know what. You deserve to find out on your own." Kyle sighed and sat back in his desk, it was one over on Cartman he and Kenny stole a project on Germany away from his fat racist ass.
"Excellent choice boys." Mr. Wyland picked another random name. "Where is, Kevin Stoley?"
"Here!" Kevin raised his hand.
"Who would you like to work with?" Mr. Wyland asked.
Kevin's eyes scanned the classroom, before deciding to take a risk. "Bebe Stevens."
Bebe had been scribbling in her notebook trying to come up with some kind of list to make Stan look bad but still trying to stay on Wendy's good side. She jumped at the sound of her name. "Me? Why me?"
"Why not? You just learned my name, give me a chance. I'll let you pick the country and everything." He waved his hand in front of her. "You will enjoy working with me."
Bebe's eyes glazed over for a moment before she smiled at Kevin. "Okay. Italy, the fine fashions would be fun to study."
"Good job, reaching outside of obvious social circles." Mr. Wyland skimmed down his list. "Let's see, how about Eric Cartman?"
Cartman let out a dramatic sigh. Kyle and Kenny were together so he couldn't torment either of them. Butters had already called Stan. He searched the room for the other person he hated the most. "I choose Wendy as my partner."
"What!" Wendy said in a high voice. She was trying not to be focused upon in yet another Stan story, but being next to Cartman would be very uncomfortable for her.
Wendy's annoyance was too sweet, though Cartman had to rub it in Stan's face one more time. "And the country I choose for our project is, Afghanistan!"
Wendy's took a deep breath to calm down. "Okay, I'd be happy to do a report on the plight of women's rights there."
At least Wendy wasn't in on the joke. For the rest of the class, the male students kept being partnered up. The countries they chose were obviously made to infuriate Stan even more.
"Pakistan." Token said while chuckling next to a terrified looking Tweek.
"Ka-ka-kazakhstan." Jimmy had sputtered out as he and Clyde tried to hold back their laughter.
"Timmy-Timmy-Stan." Timmy had called out after Bradley had chosen him as a partner.
"Turkmenistan!" Jason had blurted out. Good thing he chose Mark Cotswalds as his partner, due to home schooling Mark was one of the smartest kids in the class. But Mark rolled his eyes; he never had anything against Stan, like Gary or Gregory would have. He would rather screw over Kyle for what that kid did to his sister.
Choosing Turkmenistan was really reaching and getting ridiculous. Stan would try to hold back since Jason had always been an attention whore. He kept his eye on Wendy. Maybe he could score points by hanging out with her at recess, with the added bonus of getting away from his assh*le friends. God knows what Bebe would tell her.
Butters was useless on their project. While Stan was trying to rack his brain for a good subject, Butters kept trying to come up with more lame puns on Stan's name. Instead of freaking out on him, Stan kept leaving class to go to the water fountain to wash out the gross hangover taste in his mouth. After about the fifth time of getting up, the bell rang for recess, so Stan remained in the hall.
The first out of the classroom was Kevin and Bebe. Kevin still couldn't believe his luck, since most unlikely pairing stories started with being forced to work on school projects together. "We can study at my house and have dinner with my family after! My mom would love to meet you!"
Wendy had come out next, a scowl on her face after spending the last half hour being bothered by Cartman while she did most of the work. The fat boy hadn't blurted out anything brilliant yet so she was still loyal to Stan, for now.
"Hey Wendy, did you want to play together at recess?" Stan asked catching up with her in the hall.
"Cartman and I are project partners, that's it!" Wendy yelled out before regaining her composure. "I mean sure, this is a nice surprise. Any particular reason?"
"I'll tell you outside, come on." It might be a nice change to spill his problems to his girlfriend, instead of being made fun of by his friends.
The two started to head out before Cartman caught up with them. "You forgot this, Wendy." He held out his hand in a fist and let go. Out tumbled a small heart shaped token carved out of rose quartz, suspended from a rough leather cord looped around Cartman's finger.
"No one's supposed to know I have that; I keep it hidden deep within my back pack! How dare you try to steal my heart in front of Stan!" Wendy said, grabbing it from him.
"Oh I'm sorry. Go off with your pussy marshmallow boyfriend if that's what you want. You two deserve each other since both your names are stupid." Cartman had his hands on his hips, but the smile on his face was different than the one he would have if he was making fun of Kyle or another male friend.
"What are you talking about?" Wendy said, looking over her heart to see if Cartman had done anything to change it.
God the name mocking had spread to his girlfriend. Stan narrowed his eyes. "Cartman, f*ck off. Can I be happy for one minute before you try to drag Wendy into our typical bullsh*t?"
Cartman pushed himself even closer to Wendy, getting right in Stan's way. "Oh f*ck off, marshmallow. No one cares about you when it comes to me and Wendy."
"I care." Kyle said walking up next to Stan. Kenny following behind.
"Yeah, you would." Cartman pointed his finger at Wendy. "Your name is Wendy Testaburger. It's a direct rip-off of the Wendy's hamburger restaurant. I'm not the only one who's sees this right?"
"You're only thinking of that since you're a f*cking fatass." Stan yelled, trying to shove his way back next to Wendy.
"I don't know, judging from the commercials I think Wendy is a fat girl's name." Cartman laughed in Wendy's face. Stan stopped trying to push his way forward since he knew what was coming.
"You're calling me fat? You're calling anyone fat? f*ck you." Wendy grabbed Cartman by his coat and shoved him against the lockers. She pulled up Cartman's hat and grabbed a tuft of his hair, slamming his head against the lockers several times.
Wendy released him and he dropped to his knees."Wendeeeaahhhh, I'm sorryyyyy! I just like yew so muuuuuuch!" Cartman got up, pulling up his constantly falling down pants and continued crying down the hall and out to the playground.
"Look he is straight! I told you guys!" Kyle yelled out as the door slammed behind Cartman, notcing Stan glaring at him. "Sorry, dude. Good job, Wendy. Glad to see someone else put Cartman in his place. Maybe I'll finish off the job on the playground." Kyle gave her a small salute before he hurried out the door.
"Do people seriously get off on that love/hate crap?" Stan asked Wendy, who shrugged and looked away from him.
"Whatever floats your boat." Kenny said, loosening his hood, he had pulled it tight in response to how scary Wendy and Cartman could be.
Butters was peeking out of the classroom. "Lookit that, Stan. Your girlfriend beat up Cartman for ya. That's funny, right guys?"
Stan grabbed Butters out off the doorway and slammed him against the lockers where Wendy had slammed Cartman only a moment ago. "You. You started this. Everyone would've gotten over this cheap gag a chapter ago, but you keep fueling the stupidity! No more, I'm going to kick your ass."
From his position from being pinned, Butters tried to squirm away or see if anyone would help. Maybe Wendy would take pity on him instead of siding with her boyfriend. Or if that twenty bucks he paid Clyde would still count for protection from beatings from Stan. He was saved instead with the worst person you can go to for help in elementary school.
Mr. Wyland spied them from inside the classroom and pulled Stan off of Butters. "Boys stop fighting and report to the principal's office. You have one minute to get there as I call ahead."
"Fine." Stan spat before he started down the hallway. "I'll catch you later, Wendy, Kenny."
"Bye, Stan." Wendy said softly. She stood there holding her heart in her hands and trying not to freak out. Rose Quartz was a stone meant to calm and Wendy was an easily angered person. She kept it as a good luck charm, though maybe Cartman had tainted it somehow.
Kenny was left in the hall with her. He put a consoling hand on her shoulder. "There, there. Now that Stan and Cartman are gone, I'd love to get a bite of your Wendy's cheeseburger, sometime."
Butters meekly followed Stan, trying to form the words into some kind of an apology. "Stan, I'm awfully sorry. I was tryin' to do what you guys always do to me."
Stan ignored Butters as he took a seat next to Craig on the bench outside the principal's office. The hall door slammed open and out came Kenny chased by Mr. Wyland.
"Kyle Broflovski, you can go see the school counselor for sexually harassing Wendy Testaburger!"
"Oh hamburgers!" Butters cried out.
"That's what I was saying!" Kenny yelled as he ran by.
Stan pinched the bridge of his nose as Butters rubbed his knuckles together. Craig flipped them both off.
"Hey kids! Did you ever wonder if your parents totally screwed you with the name they gave you?"
"Yeah!" Said a little boy with longish hair, bangs covering his forehead.
"Please tell us." Says a little girl, her hair in pigtails.
"Now you will be prepared with the new Name Pun Generator! Give it a go!"
The little girl grabs it and types in her first name. A-M-A-N-D-A
"Amanda. Really popular name. Rhymes with panda." The toy spits out in a mechanical voice.
The boy gives a big grin that was trained into most child actors before they grow up to be really screwed up adults. "Golly gee, well that's not too bad, pandas are cute."
The little girl frowns, she's a bit older, therefore a bit more emotionally damaged. "Yeah pandas seem cute until they rip your head off. I hate how popular my name is."
"Why don't you shorten it?" Says the boy, his smile reaching Mormon levels.
The girl shakes her head so her pigtails slap the sides of her face. "No good, everyone goes by Manda as well."
"Why don't you drop some of the last letters and go by Ama?" The boy suggests he's always one to try and make people feel better.
The girl finally smiles like the way she was trained to do as a child actor. "Yeah that's pretty different. I'll do that."
"You know, like how you always forgot to add the D whenever you'd type the word stand for like six whole months?" A little bit of cynicism creeps into the boy's voice. Just a bit, but the start of an eventual suicide in seven to ten years.
The little girl looked away, her face red. "That's...not in the script."
"Like we're not totally off track anyhow. This is the worst fake commercial ever." The boy mumbles under his breath. He's going to grow up to be the Kurt Cobain of...child acting one day.
"I wish daddy was still alive." The girl sighs before forcing her fake smile again. "Your turn!"
The little boy types in his name J-O-H-N. The toy lights up and computes before it sputters and turns off.
"Oh my god, you broke it. You bastard!" The girl says incredulously.
"Brb, I have to restart." The boys says, slapping the side of the toy.
The toy springs back to life but is going at super speed, running though various scenarios. "John: Probably the most popular male name there is. Various meanings, rhyming and misspellings. The worst one being another name for a toilet."
The boy throws the Name Pun Generator into the corner. "This toy sucks."
"That's what you get assh*le." The girl says.
"You forgot a comma after assh*le, assh*le." The boys shoots back.
The children glare at each other as the camera pans away.
"The Name Pun Generator. A great toy brought to you by the makers of the best selling "I Don't Really Hate Candy That Much" and the "I Hate The Solution For Cartman And Wendy Boning Is Stan Either Is Gay Or Suicidal." And our least popular product "That's Why I Put Stan With Bebe Sometimes, To Be An assh*le, assh*le."
From your favorite toy company "Whatever, f*ck You!" coming September 26th.
And now back to South Par-The Stan Marsh show!
"Will you stop saying my f*cking name?" Stan shouted to the heavens.
"Who are you talking to?" Craig asked, lowering his finger.
Butters had been called in first to see the principal. Craig and Stan were still sitting outside, each going through various cycles of flipping off and nosebridgepinching.
"No one, you wouldn't understand." Stan put his hands on his head, ready to tear out his hair.
"I didn't say I cared." Craig rolled his eyes.
Stan decided to spill, not because it would make him feel better, but because it would annoy Craig. "Butters started a trend this morning and everyone has been making fun of my name all day. I tried to kick his ass in the hall."
Craig looked up; the first time the other group had interested him in weeks. "Wow, a guy named Butters got everyone to turn on you? I'll never respect him, but that's impressive."
"He pointed out both my first and last name are easy to rhyme but also full of stupid puns. They've been calling me marshmallow all day." Stan's hands returned from his lap to rubbing his face again.
"I'd hate to see what your middle name is." Craig smirked.
"If you must know, it's Patrick, which is pretty normal. Maybe I'll try to go by that from now on." Stan took a deep breath, wondering momentarily if this was the new path for him.
Craig gave one of his rare laughs. "Nah, then we'd call you Patty. Marshmallow suits you if you got your feelings so hurt. What do you think my last name rhymes with?"
"Oh whatever. What the hell are you in for?" Craig shrugged and flipped off Stan again. "Of course. Do you flip people off because of what your last name rhymes with?"
Craig would try to hide his amusement from Stan's misfortune, even if the situation was screamingly hilarious. "People pay psychiatrists good money to hear their bullsh*t melodrama. I don't want to hear yours."
"I wasn't asking for help." Stan turned away from Craig and crossed his arms.
Craig thought for a moment. He could offer his brand of kindness, if Stan was being such a whiny little bitch. "Listen, I don't make excuses for who I am and you shouldn't either. Here's some obvious free advice. I think you need to stop being so worried over what other people think of you. The only person you need to please is yourself."
"I'm not going to take your advice on how to please myself." Stan snapped.
"I assume you'd be an expert on self pleasure by now. Maybe I'll make people call you Stan Diego along with Patty and Marshmallow." Craig smirked, trying to hold back full out laughing at Stan.
Stan scooted to the far end the bench so he was as far away from Craig as possible. His mind working out the right thing to say to the principal to really screw over Butters. He deserved whatever was coming to him. Maybe he could throw Craig under the bus as well.
"Hey you in the blue hat!"
Both Stan and Craig sat up as Stephen Stotch came in. "Oh, the kid with the red poofball. You're friends with my son, what has that little troublemaker done now?"
Stan had the perfect opportunity to screw over Butters. "Oh he did a lot."
"I'll bet he did. I told my wife that boy's been cursed since the day he was born. He can't do anything right, he can't stand up for himself except for back talk where I don't even know where he got it from." Stephen crossed his arms and tapped his foot impatiently.
"Yeah, he does have a big mouth." Stan smirked.
"Worst of all he's not sorry for it. He tells me he's sorry, but his actions never follow through."
"Well Butters is probably too wimpy to get the right message out." Stan tried to reason with Mr. Stotch.
"Damn right, that boy is a sissy. Butters is going to get the punishment he deserves if he's sent home from school. I can't believe they pulled me from work. I've got to call my wife to decide what we're going to do. He obviously needs more severe punishment." Mr. Stotch walked back outside, slamming the office door behind him, making Stan jump.
Craig had an actual smile on his face. "Damn dude, Butters' dad is a freak."
"Yeah he's f*cked up. He's worse than my dad." Stan thought for a moment, they were both in trouble. But Stan could go home to his stupid, annoying dad who's added bonus was a vast liquor supply that he didn't keep very good track of. Butters had to go home to that bullsh*t.
Maybe Stan should take the fall for this one, if only to spare Butters from home punishment. He would get back at him tomorrow on the playground. He was way more creative than Butters ever was. He needed to come with even stupider pun than butterscotch.
Stan turned to Craig. "You know anything funnier than a butterscotch sundae? Anything that can top marshmallow?"
Craig yawned and stretched. "A marshmallow topped butterscotch sundae? Nah you both are screwed."
"A lot of help you are Craig motherf*cker." Stan looked away again.
"Ah you're not as bad as Butters. Also a marshmallow is way better than a butterscotch sundae."
Stan's thoughts turned from insulting Butters to ponder what Craig said. Butters was the lowest of the hierarchy of their group. Stan and his friends didn't treat him as a full member, even Cartman outranked him. Why not let Butters have one day of acceptance even if it was at Stan's expense? He would spring back, like the f*cking marshmallow he was. God things were screwy if Craig ended up being Stan's voice of reason. "I think I get what you're saying. If you squish down a marshmallow it will spring back into practically the same shape. But if you ignore an ice cream sundae it'll melt and be gross and most likely thrown away?"
"I'm not fat enough to get your stupid food metaphors, Stan. I was saying I want some f*cking marshmallows right now. There has to be some left over from the science project, right?" Craig got up, flipped Stan off one more time before walking out the door.
Kyle would always be Stan's best voice of reason. Though Stan figured Craig probably always liked being in trouble since it cut into actual classroom time.
Stan looked to make sure he was completely alone before lifting his shirt and pinching his side. No rolls, Stan wasn't fat at all. But he assumed he gained a stigma from his group of friends, who he would admit, made being stuck in class or adventures a lot more fun.
Principal Victoria came out of her office and Stan quickly put his shirt back down. Butters was following her. "Butters told his side of the story, now it's your turn, Stanley. Don't worry boys; we've already informed your parents."
"You called my dad!" Butters said, putting his hands over his mouth.
Stan passed by, patting Butters on the shoulder. "It's okay. I'll try my best to help both of us. When it comes to dealing with your dad, just be a man."
"But my name doesn't rhyme with man, Stan!" Butters cried out.
"Oh right. I'm sorry. You'll be fine though." Stan kept his head down as he walked into the principal's office.
Half an hour later, Stan found himself waiting on the bench in the school office. After using all the skills he had to come up with a touching speech about what he learned, Principal Victoria still suspended him for half a day. Maybe he should've bent the truth a little bit more in his favor, but he was lucky to go home. Stan had returned to class briefly to be met with all his classmates staring at him as he grabbed his things. He knew the school called one of his parents to come pick him up.
He gave a small sigh of relief when his father walked in, though Randy didn't look too happy. He signed the forms to release his son out of school.
"I can't believe I had to leave work to come get you out of school for fighting. Get in, I already feel crappy enough." Randy said, as Stan followed him to the truck.
Stan opened the opposite door and climbed in. "I'm sorry, I couldn't help it. What's wrong, Dad?"
Randy put his head down on the steering wheel. "Stanley, one day you'll learn the pain of drinking too much the night before, but being forced to continue the next day as normal."
Stan buckled his seatbelt."Oh, you have a huge headache, you can't get the bad taste out of your mouth and no matter how much water you drink, you want to throw it back up? I know that feeling all too well...because I'm so in love and insecure and stuff."
"Yeah, why did you think I bargained with your principal to have you suspended for the rest of the day? You could've had detention for the rest of the weekm" Randy muttered as he started the car.
"So am I doing you a favor or am I still in trouble?" Stan asked.
"You'll be grounded for as long as I'm hungover, how about that?" Randy said, fiddling with the radio.
This could work in Stan's favor in more ways than one. "Oh, cool. So what do you do to get over hangovers, dad?"
"Water, good food, and a long nap in that order. I'm about ready for step two and Wendy's is the best hangover food. Wanna stop there before we go home?" Randy smiled at his son for the first time all day.
Stan frowned back. Goddamn, everything was coming back to bite him in the ass. He let out a sigh. "Yeah, dad. Let's get some Wendy's."
Stan could never depend on his dad when it came to something important, but when it came to stupid stuff like this, his dad could be brilliant. Stan had suggested they get butterscotch sundaes while waiting in the drive through. Randy said eating ice cream with alcohol still in your system was a recipe for disaster. So Stan got the exact same thing as his dad, a double bacon cheeseburger, a large fries and lemonade. Though he couldn't finish the whole thing. This was his first bad hangover.
Step three in Randy's hangover cure was amazing though. It felt so good to crawl back into bed after he hadn't wanted to move that morning. The added bonus was the heater was turned up all the way. Stan fell asleep as soon as his head hit the pillow.
And I feel that time's a wasted go, So where ya going till tomorrow? And I see that these are lies to come,would you even care?
A few hours later, Stan was awaked by his new ring tone. A song he got into because of Guitar Hero, despite Kyle's bias that any song from that game automatically sucked.
And I feel it.And I feel it.Where ya going till tomorrow?Where ya going with that mask I found?And I feel, and I feelwhen the dogs begin to smell her,will she smell alone?
Stan lay in bed, continuing to listen. He liked the guitar and was trying to get a grip on the lyrics. He hadn't heard it enough to get the deeper meaning, yet.
And I feel, so much depends on the weather.So is it raining in your bedroom?And I see, that these are the eyes of disarray.Would you even care?
But the tone of the song seemed a perfect match for days like this. Finally Stan checked the caller I.D. Butters Stotch. Great.
Stan sat up in bed and rubbed his eyes. "Hi Butters, you sound too cheery to be talking to me."
"Well my dad did ground me, though he didn't beat me or anything so today was a'okay."
"That's nice." Wow Butters did have a pathetic homelife. Stan was like his savior at this point, or second coming of L. Ron Hubbard, again.
"The only thing he said is I can't hang 'round you no more since you're a bad influence and stuff."
Or maybe not. Stan wondered for a moment how Butters would fare in Craig's gang. "So then why are you calling me?"
"We have a project together, silly. We can't see each other outside of school so I was wonderin' if you wanted me to do the whole thing myself."
"No, no that's unfair." Stan thought for a moment. "I'll do the research and we'll go over it at school tomorrow."
"Okay, you're a real good friend, even if you're a bad influence on me."
"Thanks, I think. I'll do the research and all you have to do is type it. Just, for f*cks sake, please proof read it yourself instead of only running spell check."
"Okay! Wow a whole night to myself while being grounded! What should I do?"
"Maybe you should treat yourself to some ice cream. Bye!" Stan hung up, considering going back to sleep or playing that song again.
Instead, he headed down stairs to get the rest of his food. He wanted to finish off his Wendy's cheeseburger before someone else got to it when he wasn't looking.
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