Chapter 1-The journey to the unknown
It was a cold evening in South Park, Colorado as Denny Creed, having finally been able to bring himself to leave his sick mother’s side and head here to avoid ending up at an orphanage, reached the place that his mom told him his father lived.
“Where are you headed from here, kid?” asked the driver of the semi whom Denny had been riding with since leaving his home in Arizona 8 hours before.
Denny pulled out the page that he had torn out of his mom’s address book and found the South Park address that was written on it. “It says here the address is 28201 Bonanza Ave.”
The driver picked up his gps and typed the address into it and they were on their way. They reached the place within 5 minutes and Denny could feel the goosebumps creeping up his spine. He didn’t know where he had landed himself but it had to be better than the situation he was leaving behind.
“Well, here you go kid. I really hope you find what you’re looking for and if you ever need a lift again, I’ll give you my cell number” said the driver with a warm smile.
“Thanks a lot. I really appreciate your help. Take care.” Denny carefully got off the truck and started to head up the driveway of what he hoped would be his new home. The lights were on downstairs which would be a good sign as he walked up to the door and rang the doorbell. The first noise right away was a loud voice, and it sounded like a kid’s voice, shouting out, “Mom! Somebody’s at the door!
The door opened within about 10 seconds and there, standing in the doorway was a tall woman with a kind face. She had shoulder length brown hair and was wearing a light blue long-sleeved shirt. She looked down and saw Denny looking at her with a kind of surprised look.
“Why hello young man. What can I do for you?” she asked kindly.
“Uh, yeah. Is this where Liam Cartman lives?” asked Denny still a little surprised at seeing this other woman here.
The woman’s face went from kind to surprise to shock faster than a set of traffic lights. She jumped badly when a boy, who was evidently her son, spoke up behind her.
“Who is it, mom? Is it Kyle again?” He sees Denny, “Who’s this kid?”
Denny wanted to get off on the right foot with this kid so he extended a hand and introduced himself politely, “Hey, I’m Denny, Denny Creed”.
“Creed?! Oh, sh*t!” exclaimed the woman who was now paralyzed with shock. “Please come in, young man. I’ve got some explaining to do. I’d better call your father over here too.”
“Whoa, wait a minute” said Denny following her into the kitchen, “You mean Liam doesn’t live here or something?”
“I need to clarify some things with you first but no, I am not your father.”
Denny’s confusion was growing deeper by the second. None of this was making sense. How the hell could this woman be Liam? Denny watched as she made her way over to the phone and dialed a number.
“Hello Gerald? Sorry to bother you but can you please come over here right now? No, just you. I have something I need you to see. Ok, great. See you in a minute.”
She turned back to Denny, “Your father is on his way here. How did you get here? Is everything alright?”
Denny took a deep breath, “No, it’s not. My mom is sick. She said it’s an advanced stage of AIDS and she hasn’t got much time left. I hitchhiked here from phoenix on a semi to find my dad because my mom said I would be going to an orphanage when she dies. It was one of the hardest things in my life to leave her behind but I’ve heard bad things about orphanages. I found your address in my mom’s address book so that’s how I found you.”
Denny began to tear up and couldn’t go on. Everything that’s happened so far today was too much to deal with. Leaving his mom behind, having to hitchhike 8 hours, being in a new place, worrying what would happen to him. What if his father didn’t want him and he ended up at the orphanage anyway? It would all have been for nothing.
The woman put her arms around Denny in a tight embrace and hugged him tightly, “It’ll be ok dear. I know this is a lot to take in but it’ll get better.”
Denny just couldn’t hold back all the anguish. He did know that at least he would be welcome here if it came to that. The doorbell suddenly rang and the woman (who he figured was called liane) got up to answer it.
Liane came back a minute later with a man wearing a yarmulke and Denny knew at once this was who he was looking for because of the yarmulke his mom gave him and said it was his dad’s. Gerald looked at Denny nervously as though trying to hold back from hugging him and afraid of scaring the sh*t out of Denny.
“Uh, are you my dad?” asked Denny nervously and in his mind trying to read the expression on Gerald’s face. He was hoping, with every particle in his body that he had finally found what he was looking for.
“Yes, I am” said Gerald, “You’re Denny, right? I heard your mother is not well and that’s why you’ve come to South Park?”
Denny began to tear up again, “Yes, and she was going to send me to the orphanage when she dies. I hate myself for leaving her but I wanted to find you”.
“Well, don’t worry, that won’t happen.” Gerald looks up at Liane, “Can we save the secrets for tomorrow? I’d like to get him home and all set, he’s been through enough today.”
“Yeah, it’s better not to overload him with anymore tonight, you should take him home. I’m sure he can’t wait to meet Kyle.”
“Who is Kyle?” asked Denny, managing to calm himself down again.
“Kyle is your brother and so is Ike. You’ll see them when we get home.”
Denny’s face suddenly lit up, “I was hoping I’d have siblings!” he said with a smile, “who’s the oldest?”
“Well, seeing as your birthday is February, that makes you 3 months older than Kyle exactly. Your mom didn’t have anymore kids?” asked Gerald, a little surprised.
“Well, no but you knew that didn’t you?” asked Denny.
“I haven’t seen her in 10 years but never mind that for now, let’s get you home so you can meet everybody.” He looks at Liane and smiles, “thanks for letting me know Denny was here, I know it was a surprise for all of us.”
“Oh, it was no problem, Gerald” said Liane, “I’m just glad he was able to get here with no problems.”
Gerald and Denny make their way over to Gerald’s car and get inside. Gerald pulls out of the driveway and they’re off. Gerald still looks a little shaken from the night’s events but he’s determined not to let it show.
“Ok Denny, here’s what we need to do, at least for tonight because I don’t want to piss off Sheila at this time of night. She doesn’t know anything about you or your mom so we’re just going to pretend that your mom is my sister and she sent you here since she’s dying. Everything will become clear tomorrow but for now I don’t want to make this all topple on us. Think you can play along?”
“Yeah, I’ll do it” said Denny, “and what about Kyle and Ike?”
“I don’t know about them yet. I think I’ll tell them that you are their brother but not to say anything to Sheila until I straighten it out.”
“Ok, I’ll do it your way then” said Denny, still excited that he finally had brothers. True, he was still worried about his mom, but he was relieved that he didn’t have to worry about what would happen to him. The thing to concentrate on now was adjusting to his new home and family.
They reached the house within the next 5 minutes and pulling into the driveway, Denny began to feel increasingly nervous as he always did in new situations. After all he had been through tonight and all the stuff with his disabilities, this was going to be another hurdle to jump nevertheless.
As they got out of the car, Gerald motioned for Denny to follow him quietly to the door. Gerald looked as though he wanted to be somewhere, anywhere else right now but gathering himself, he opened the door.
The first glimpse of the family showed Sheila, Kyle, and Ike sitting on the couch, watching tv. They looked up as Gerald and Denny entered. Sheila stood up and came over to greet them. Kyle and Ike stayed on the couch, looking interestingly at them.
“Hello and who might you be?” asked Sheila kindly, looking at Denny with a smile.
“My name is D-D-D-Denny” said Denny in a shaky voice.
“Now, there’s no need to look so scared!” Sheila exclaimed, looking concerned at the expression on his face, “come in and sit down with the family.
“T-Thank you” Denny looked around at the living room and picked the chair on the one side by the couch.
“Can I get you something to eat or drink, Denny?” Sheila asked, still standing by the kitchen, “there’s still some chicken left over from dinner and some soda in the fridge.”
“Sure, that would be great” said Denny, suddenly realizing he hadn’t eaten anything since before he had left home early that morning.
Sheila went to go get the stuff for Denny. Meanwhile Kyle stood up and made his way to where Denny was sitting. “Hey dude, I’m Kyle, it’s nice to meet you.”
“You too, I’ve heard a lot about you in the short time I’ve been here” said Denny, right away striking conversation with his new brother.
“Where are you from?” asked Kyle, looking confused, “you’re not from around here are you?”
“I actually just came here from Arizona”. said Denny, feeling more calm about the subject than he had been all day, “My mom is really sick and was going to send me to an orphanage when she dies”.
“But where’s your dad…?” Kyle started to ask before Gerald cleared his throat loudly.
“Kyle, can I talk to you for a minute?” he asked, standing up and motioning Kyle to follow him.
“Ah, come on!” exclaimed Kyle, “What did I do now?”
“Nothing, I just need to tell you something.” said Gerald.
Gerald and Kyle go into another room. Gerald closes the door carefully behind them and looks very seriously at Kyle.
“What the hell is going on dad?” asked Kyle, confused as all hell, “Is this about Denny? Who is he exactly?”
“Settle down and let me tell you what the situation is.” said Gerald quickly, “The truth is that I was involved with somebody else before your mom and she wound up giving birth to Denny because of it. That means Denny is your brother and the reason he came here was to find me since his mother is very sick. She was going to give him up to an orphanage before she dies and he was scared to death of that thought. He hitchhiked here from Arizona after he had to leave his dying mom behind. Make sure not to give him any hint that you know about this. I don’t want you bugging him about it until he is comfortable enough to tell you himself, just make sure he’s comfortable.”
Kyle just stood there with his mouth open. “God damn, that’s weak. I don’t blame him for not wanting to go to the orphanage. I sure as hell wouldn’t want that to happen to me. No wonder he was so nervous when he got here.”
“That’s right,” said Gerald, “so like I said, I’ll tell your mother what’s going on so just keep Denny company.”
“I’ll do that, dad.” said Kyle.
They came back out into the living room just as Sheila came in to give Denny his food. Gerald was going to tell Sheila what the situation was in the morning but now decided that since he already told Kyle, it would be smarter to get telling Sheila about it out of the way.
“Honey?” asked Gerald nervously, “can I talk to you upstairs for a minute?”
“What? Why?” asked Sheila suspiciously, “what did you do this time?!”
“N-Nothing” said Gerald, though his sweaty palms and foreheads were a major giveaway.
“I don’t trust you with that look” said Sheila, staring directly into his eyes, “If it’s nothing what’s with the sweat and sh*t?”
“Just come upstairs and let me tell you what’s going on.” said Gerald, a little more insistently.
As they went toward their bedroom, Kyle wasted no time doing what his dad had asked him to. He went over to where Denny sat enjoying his first meal since early that morning. Kyle looked over at his new brother and tried hard to make sure that this was going to be a better place for Denny to live. He still couldn’t believe what his father had said about Denny’s mom, even more so the fact that Denny would’ve ended up in an orphanage if not for taking matters into his own hands.
“So Denny, how old are you exactly?” asked Kyle.
“I’m 9, going to be 10 in February.” said Denny, who was just as curious about Kyle as Kyle was he.
“Oh, so that makes you 3 months older than me. Wait until you meet my best friend, Stan. You’re gonna love him. You gotta watch out for cartman though, he’s the biggest assh*le in the world.”
“Oh, I’m not worried about that. Kids used to f*ck around with me back home and quickly learned to stop that. Cartman just sounds like a little prick.”
“He always acts like a tough badass but when it comes to it, he gets hit once and he running home crying.” said Kyle.
“Yep, I know that type.” said Denny, “we had some kid named Connor at our school who thought he was the campus badass but whenever he picked fights with people, he didn’t come out of them looking like a badass anymore. More like being glad it was all over.”
Meanwhile, Gerald and Sheila were in their room as Gerald decided to tell Sheila that Denny was his son.
“Whoa, wait a minute! How the hell can he be your son?! You cheated on me?!”
“No! Let me explain!” exclaimed Gerald, “I was involved with his mom for a short period before college and before I met you. We broke up before I found out she was pregnant with him. “
“You better not be lying or it’s over for you, mister!” shrieked Sheila, “I don’t want anything bad to happen to that boy so don’t you dare tell him any of this!”
“I’m sorry I didn’t tell you sooner!” said Gerald pleadingly, “it’s just that over the years I totally forgot about it all!”
“Well,, I still can’t believe you did this sh*t “ said Sheila, “you’re sleeping on the couch tonight.”\
“Ah come on!” exclaimed Gerald but faltered at the look she gave him.
“Let’s go downstairs now and let that boy know that he will not be turned away.” said Sheila.
They came out into the hallway and started to head downstairs. Sheila felt a little pissed that Gerald wasn’t honest with the situation before college but also figured if this had been before they met, that she ought not to let it bother her so much.
As they got downstairs, Kyle and Denny were deep in conversation. It seemed Denny would fit in the family just fine, which was good considering what he had already been through. The beat part was that he now knew he had a brother his age to confide in when he was feeling down.
“Ok Denny, are you all done?” asked Sheila as though nothing had happened, “How about a little tour of the house before we all head for bed?”
“Ok, sounds good” said Denny, “I’m pretty excited to meet Kyle’s friends tomorrow.”
“I’m sure you are” said Sheila, “but we’ll get settled in first before we get you set for school.”
Denny had a hard time falling asleep that night, being too excited about everything but eventually was able to pass out.
*End of Chapter 1*
Chapter 2-A new day, a new life
The next morning, Denny was woken up by Kyle’s alarm at 7:00 and too excited about the day, even though he didn’t know if he’d be getting registered for school yet or not, decided to get up too.
“Hey dude, you don’t have to get up yet but I have to go to school” said Kyle.
“I know” said Denny, “but I’m too wound up to do sleep now. I take it you’re in fourth grade too, huh?”
“Yep” said Kyle, “just be aware of Garrison when you start school though. He’s gay and had two sex changes.”
“Dude, that’s f*cked up” said Denny, “he must’ve been desperate.”
They continued talking about Garrison as they got dressed and headed downstairs for breakfast. They found Gerald at the table drinking coffee and reading the paper. Denny, meanwhile, took out a couple of pill bottles and started grabbing pills from them.
“What are those for, Denny?” asked Gerald.
“Oh, I’ve got kidney problems so I have to take medicine for that. I also have hydrocephalus too but no pills for that, thank god.” said Denny.
“Holy sh*t, dude!” exclaimed Kyle, “I have kidney problems too but it’s because I have diabetes.”
“Don’t you take insulin for that?” asked Denny.
“Yeah, and it sucks ass” said Kyle, “a needle in my leg everyday? I’d be surprised if I ever wasn’t used to needles anymore.”
“That sucks, dude” said Denny, “and I thought I had it bad with all the needles I’ve been poked with and all the surgeries”.
“WHAT?!” exclaimed Kyle, “You’re not serious about that?”
“Very” said Denny, “all the things my mom had to do to pay for the medical bills and we’re jewish too.”
“Speaking of your mom, I think we ought to call to check on her later” said Gerald.
“She’ll be pissed at me for leaving” said Denny, suddenly apprehensive.
“Nah, I doubt that” said Gerald, “she knew you didn’t want to go to that orphanage and probably will be more relieved that you’re ok.”
Kyle and Denny finished breakfast and as Kyle was getting his school stuff ready, Denny and Gerald were talking about ways that things would be different in South Park in relation to Phoenix.
Sheila came downstairs, still in a night gown, at about 7:30 and was surprised to see Denny already awake.
“Denny, you’re up already?” asked Sheila, “I figured you’d sleep a couple hours more after yesterday.”
“I thought so too” said Denny, “but I feel too wound up with this new situation.”
“I understand that” said Sheila, “I tend to be the same way in a new place. There’s a lot to do today anyway.”
Kyle suddenly came downstairs, backpack around his shoulders, holding Ike’s hand .
“Ok, I’m off” he said, “Denny, feel free to play the xbox if you want or whatever. I’ll see you guys later.”
“Ok, see you later dude” said Denny.
“Give mommy a kiss, Ike” said Sheila.
Ike pecked her on the cheek quickly, followed by Kyle then they were off to the bus stop. Meanwhile, Denny and the parents went back to breakfast.
“So Denny, what do you usually do for fun?” asked Sheila.
“Oh, the usual” said Denny, “hanging out with friends, playing video games, stuff like that”.
“That’ll be perfect then,” said Gerald, “Kyle and his friends are always getting into new things. They like sports too”.
“They like to get into trouble too” said Sheila, “I’m sure there’s things we don’t know about”.
“Yeah, I do a lot of that stuff too” said Denny.
Gerald had left for work around 8 and as the morning had branched into the afternoon, Denny and Sheila had started to rearrange Kyle’s room to make room for Denny. They would go shopping for Denny’s stuff when Kyle and Ike got home from school but for now just make room for what there would be. They arrived home around 3:30 just as Kyle’s room was all set up.
“What’d you guys do today?” asked Kyle the moment he and Ike walked in the door.
“Denny and I rearranged your room a little bit so he’ll have room for his stuff when we got to wall-mart” said Sheila “go check it out”.
Kyle came back about five minutes later. He was smiling to himself .
“I’m still so stoked to have my brother staying with us” he said, “is that going to be enough room for everything?”
“For the moment” said Sheila, “we’ll move things around some more if necessary but let’s get to shopping for now”.
They all got ready to go. Denny, having been waiting all day for it, climbed into the front seat of the car while Kyle and Ike got into the back.
“Everybody strapped in?” asked Sheila, “Let’s get going then.”
“Where are going?” asked Kyle.
“Wall-mart of course” said Sheila, “we have lots to buy and I don’t want to be driving all over town.”
“Yeah that makes sense” said Kyle.
“How many of those are there around here?” asked Denny, interested.
“Just one” said Kyle, “this is a pretty small town”.
“Wow” said Denny, “where I lived in Arizona, there were like 15 or so in just that city alone”.
“Well see, that’s where the difference comes in” said Sheila, “this town doesn’t have near enough money for that much or enough space.”
They eventually got to Wall-mart and grabbed a shopping cart at the entrance. Once inside, they went to look at bedroom furniture. It soon became clear that there was a lot more to buy than Sheila had originally intended and it would be essential if they would have Gerald for help.
Sheila pulled out a pen and notepad and began making a list of things on the notepad and eventually the boys figured out that it was a list of things that were needed.
“Ok, we need a bed, dresser, clothes…, hmm, what else Denny?” she asked.
“Whoa, wait a second” Denny suddenly flinched at the list as Sheila read things off, “you don’t have to go to all that trouble right now. Just an air mattress is good for now.”
“Nonsense”, said Sheila, “it’s not like you’re temporarily here, I want you to be comfortable.”
“I’d don’t want you to bankrupt yourself” said Denny with a surprised look, “come on now, I’m serious.”
“Well, you at least need clothes” said Sheila, “are you sure you’re ok with this?”
“Yeah” said Denny, “just take it slow”.
“Come on Mom” said Kyle, “he’s fine with it. Let’s just get what we need, I want him to meet Stan!”
But it would turn out that Stan just happened to be there too , along with Randy and Sharon, in the clothing department looking rather bored as he was looking at shirts. He paused to take one off the rack looking indifferent and snorted after looking the price.
“This is boring, Dad” he said rolling his eyes at his father, “let’s just get out of here.”
Stan turned around and saw Kyle, who in turn looked relieved at seeing Stan there.
“Dude, am I glad to see you!” said Kyle, before Stan could say anything, “Turns out I have another brother that I just met last night!”
“I thought I heard Cartman say something about that”’, said Stan, “He said he saw some kid at his house last night and at first thought it was you.”
“Well, he was right” said Kyle, “This is Denny, and Denny, this is Stan”.
“Finally I get to meet you!”, said Denny, shaking hands with Stan excitedly, “Nice to meet you!”
“How come I didn’t see you in school earlier?” asked Stan, a little curious, “You’re in 4th grade too, right?”
“We’re enrolling him tomorrow” Sheila spoke up, “We just wanted to get him settled in today”
They had all decided they were done with looking around and while Sheila and Stan’s parents went through the checkout with their purchases, Kyle, Denny, and Stan went out to the front of the store, getting acquainted.
“So Denny, where did you come from?” asked Stan, “Are you from Colorado?”
“Actually, I’m from Mesa, AZ” said Denny, trying to stay away from how guilty he still felt from leaving his dying mother’s side. He had remembered what Gerald had said last night, that his mom would probably be more relieved that he was safe with who she trusted and not pissed that he had left. He felt a pang of guilt from not having called to checked on her.
“Damn dude” said Stan, “how can you survive those summers there?”
“Well, you never really get used to it and never really become tolerant of it either.” said Denny, grasping the subject willingly, “The thing you learn to do is to try not going outside as much as possible, or else you’ll end up with a heat stroke or melanoma.”
“Yeah, that makes sense” said Stan, nodding, “Do you go swimming a lot because of that, then?”
“Hell no” said Denny, shaking his head, “that heat makes going swimming feel like a bath. It’s better to do that when it gets dark.”
The adults had come out of the store right then and had agreed to let the boys roam around to get to know each other. They had started venturing back into town to see what Cartman and Kenny were up to, and at the same time, showing Denny popular places such as Stark’s Pond, school, and Phil Collins Hill, while making fun of him.
It had turned out that they completely forgot about Cartman and Kenny as the day had wore on. Kyle and Stan had recounted to Denny all the f*cked up sh*t that had happened in town over the years.
“Whoa, wait a minute. Barbara Streisand came here?!” asked Denny, with his mouth open.
“Yup, and talk about a bitch” said Stan, with a shudder, “dude, you have no idea. Her music is good…” pausing to let the irony set in, “if you like the sound of a peacock getting it’s neck broken.”
With that, the three boys started pouring into laughter until they were all red in the face and could barely breathe before laughing again.
“Oh my god” choked Denny, still red in the face, “that’s the best one I’ve heard in a long time!”
“I’m so glad she’s dead now” said Kyle, finally able to stop laughing, “Robert Smith kicks ass! Then there was the whole thing with those Hollywood people bringing that film festival here. That sucked ass, especially when Mr. Hankey was nearly killed.”
“Who’s that?” asked Denny, looking confused.
“He’s a talking piece of poo that lives in the sewer”, explained Kyle, “you’ve never heard of him?”
“Nope, never have…, whoa, wait a second, “ began Denny, “what was that? You’re not kidding?
“Don’t worry, said Stan, “that’s the reaction everybody has when they first find out.”
“Uhh” said Denny, still surprised, “I’ll take your word for it.”
“Hey, what time is it?” Stan asked all of a sudden.
Kyle looked at his watch and looked surprised, “sh*t, we better go.”
The three boys began to walk home, still recounting all that has happened in South Park. Once they had reached Stan’s neighborhood, they said their goodbyes and continued on their ways.
When they reached the Broflovski residence, they were greeted by Sheila and Gerald, along with Ike, near the stairs. Each of them looked a little worried, which made Denny and Kyle feel a little apprehensive.
“Oh sh*t” said Kyle, “sorry we’re late. “We just lost track of time.”
“Don’t worry about that” said Sheila, warmly, “Denny, we got a call from your mom while you two were out.”
This caused butterflies to creep up Denny’s arms down to his fingertips.
“What did they say?” asked Denny, trying to keep his voice steady, but it took every ounce of will he had to do so.
“She was taken to the hospital last night” said Sheila, still warmly.
“They say that the AIDS has progressed and they don’t think she’ll be alive much longer” said Gerald, in the same tone of voice as Sheila. “she’s glad you made it here, safe and sound. That was the thing she wanted most to know.”
“Is she in a coma?” asked Denny.
“Yes” said Gerald, “they figure it’s best for her to be in a chemically-induced coma. They’ve decided that it’s better for her to be this way to spare her the pain.”
“But who makes the choice of what happens at this point?” asked Denny.
“It will depend on what it says on her advance directives.” said Gerald, “those determine how and who is in charge of her care since she’s unable to make those decisions.”
Just then, the phone rang and Sheila went into the kitchen to answer it. Denny, Gerald, and Kyle stood there in stunned silence but before any of them could say a word to each other, Sheila poked her head through the doorway.
“Gerald, the phone’s for you. It sounds important.”
Gerald walked into the kitchen, looking uninterested. There was a few seconds’ silence as Gerald and Sheila were still in the kitchen as Denny looked at Kyle, feeling nervous, and Kyle, a little curious. Sheila had come back to the dining room a moment later, looking anxious.
“Denny, can you come into the kitchen for a moment? There is something important we need to talk about.” said Sheila.
Denny followed her nervously into the kitchen where they found Gerald busy with whatever the phone call was about.
“Wait a second” Gerald was saying, “I think Denny has the right to have a say in this. Ok, I’ll put on the speaker phone.” He paused as he did so and took a nervous glance at Denny out of the corner of his eye.
“Are you there, Denny?” said a voice whom Denny did not recognize, “This is Dr. Roberts at the hospital. I have something very important to talk to you about.”
“O-ok, about w-what?” asked Denny nervously.
“I’m the attending physician for your mom and I think your dad told you that she came in last night, correct?” The professional tone of voice was difficult to read.
“Yeah” said Denny, “He said you don’t think she has much time left.”
“I’m afraid he was right.” said the doctor, “We have decided to put her into a coma until we get any information about what her power of attorney wants to do.”
“But how do we figure out who that is?” asked Denny, “That could take weeks!”
“Well, that’s the reason for my call.” said the doctor, “We have learned that your dad has been named her power of attorney.”
“And what were you planning to do?” asked Denny looking at his dad.
“Well, that’s why we called you in here.” said Gerald, “I think you have more right to figure out what to do than I do”.
“These are the possible avenues we can take”, said the doctor, “Option A is to keep her on life support, option B is to let her go, and Option C is to take her out of the coma and wait it out.”
“And what do you think we should do?” Denny asked Gerald.
“I don’t feel right making this decision for you.” said Gerald, “You’ve known her longest, so what do you think she would want?”
“I’m afraid of what it could mean if I do.” said Denny, feeling tense, “It sucks what she has to be going through right now”
“It’s ok if you need time to figure it out” said the doctor, “If you need to, you can call me back.”
“No, no, I think I know what would be right.” said Denny in a low voice, “I think it would be best to spare her from the suffering.”
Denny began to break down softly as he said this. Gerald came close and hugged him. Sheila went back into the dining room, most likely to tell Kyle what was going on.
“You’re sure of this?” asked the doctor, still in his professional tone.
“Y-yes” Denny choked, “I-I think it’s better for her to be let go now, I don’t want her to have to suffer”
“Ok, Denny,” said Gerald softly, “you’re the only one with the right to decide”
“W-wait a s-second,” choked Denny again, “can you wake her up so I can say g-goodbye?”
“Of course”, said the doctor.
There was noise on the other side of the line which was evidently from the doctor giving Denny’s mom medicine to wake her up.
“W-wha?” said his mom, in a voice that was barely above a whisper, “What’s going on?”
“Hi m-mom” said Denny struggling to maintain control of himself, “I’m so sorry I left you behind.”
“Denny? Where are you? How come I can’t see you?” asked his mom, still softly.
“I found dad” Denny forced himself to push on, “I’m in South Park. I didn’t want to go to that orphanage.”
“T-that’s good to hear, son” she said, “I was hoping you were alright”
“I’m so ashamed that I left.” said Denny guiltily, “I know I should have stayed with you.”
“It’s fine, Denny. You have to take care of yourself too. I didn’t want you to grow up not knowing your dad.”
“Mom, there’s something I need to tell you.” said Denny, bracing himself.
“I know you’re in a lot of pain and you probably can’t take it anymore.” said Denny.
“It’s the worst pain I’ve ever been in.” said his mother, groggily, “I can’t take it anymore”.
“Well, you know how you named dad your power of attorney?” asked Denny, finding it hard to continue, “It’s just…” he couldn’t finish.
“We have your best interests at heart, Christy” said Gerald, “Denny and I were talking about it with the doctor and we really wouldn’t want you to suffer anymore, so we have all agreed to let you go.”
“I’ve been thinking about that too”, said Christy peacefully, “it’s such a tough decision but I’ve been through so much sh*t with this that I can’t take it anymore.”
Gerald was a little surprised at Christy’s tone of voice but then realized they probably gave her a valium to keep her calm.
“I had told the doctor that even though I have power of attorney,” said Gerald, “I thought it wouldn’t feel right without letting Denny have say in this decision.”
“I appreciate that very much Gerald” said Christy, “I knew right from day one that you were always a good person. I will always feel at peace knowing that you and your wife are taking care of Denny.”
“It’s been good knowing you, Christy”
“You too, Gerald”
“Bye mom! I love you! I’ll never forget you!”
“Bye Denny. Be a good boy.. Live a good life now. I love you.”
The line went blank.
*End of chapter 2*
Denny was still badly shaken at what had just happened, “Jesus christ, did my mom really just pass away? What will happen now? How will my life be without her?”
He had been staring at the hung up phone for the last few minutes with nothing but a numb feeling and was not even aware of his knees giving away as Gerald leapt forward to catch him before he crashed to the ground.. He picked up Denny from the ground and brought him into the living room where he set Denny on the couch. Sheila stood by wringing out a wet wash cloth and set it on Denny’s forehead as Gerald backed away, looking worried.
“What happened in there?” asked Sheila, surprised at what had just occurred.
“Christy has died” said Gerald, “We had decided it was better to just let everything go, to spare anymore suffering. I figured it would be this way but it was for the best.”
“Wait a second,” Sheila began, “You said it’s over?
“Yes”, said Gerald, beginning to pace the room with his hands in his pockets, “We all conferred and agreed it was better. It was down to Denny to make the decision.”
“Wait a second, what do you mean “it was down to Denny to make the decision”?” asked Sheila.
“That’s the reason why I wanted him in the room, since I didn’t feel like it was right not to inform him of the situation. I also felt that if it was to go the way it has, that he deserved a chance to speak with her one last time.”
“Poor dear, no wonder you’re in such shock” said Sheila, looking down at Denny with concern.
“Where’s Kyle by the way?” asked Gerald, suddenly realizing that Kyle wasn’t there.
“He’s in his room”, said Sheila, “I told him to go upstairs until we were ready to talk to him.”
“Good thinking”, said Gerald, “it would be best to let Denny recuperate first and, oh sh*t, what about dinner?”
“We’ll order a pizza”, said Sheila, as though she’d planned on that question, “Do you want to tell Kyle what happened or me? Then the other can order the pizza.?”
“I’ll take care of the pizza and keep an eye on Denny.”
Sheila began the walk up the stairs toward Kyle’s room and wondered if Kyle might not have been eavesdropping on what went on downstairs, though she, Sheila, thought that maybe Kyle already knew what had happened. As she came up to the doorway, she heard the sound of typing as though from a computer and which stopped abruptly when she knocked on the door..
“Kyle, can I talk to you for a minute?”, she asked when she entered..
“Is it about Denny? “ he asked, but he knew what she was going to say.
“Yes”, said Sheila, “I want to make one thing clear and that is the fact that you are not to mention anything in the current situation or to question him in any way about it until he is ready, which will take a while, I’m sure.”
“I figured that’s what was going on.” said Kyle, nodding, “His mom died didn’t she?”
Sheila though for a minute, pondering what she was going to say, then decided to just come out and say it.
“That’s right and this is taking a heavy toll on Denny right now. We were going to enroll him in school tomorrow but now I’m not sure that’s a good idea until this stuff dies down.”
“That’s what I thought too”, said Kyle, “You’re not going to make him do that yet, are you?”
“No”, said Sheila, shaking her head, “We figured it’s not right to do that yet, so that he can come to terms with what has happened.”
“Where is he now?”, asked Kyle, concerned, “He’s not going to the hospital, is he?”
“No, he’s on the couch.” Sheila said, reassuringly, “He’ll be alright. He’s just in shock right now.”
“Can I go downstairs and see him?”
“I guess that should be fine now.”, said Sheila, “Just remember what I said. Don’t say anything about his mother dying until he’s ready to talk about it”
Meanwhile, as Sheila had gone upstairs, presumably to tell Kyle what has just occurred, Gerald had no intention of ordering the pizza at that moment. He walked over to where Denny was on the couch, seeing that he staring blankly up at the ceiling.. At first he couldn’t figure out what to say. He knew letting Christy go must have taking a giant toll on his son’s mind and that this had began a whole new chapter for him.
“Denny? Are you feeling alright?”, asked Gerald as tenderly as possible.
It took Denny a few seconds to respond but when he did, he was surprised at how steady his voice sounded.
“I-it’s hard to imagine that this really just happened. I just can’t believe that it’s over just like that.”
“I understand”, said Gerald, slowly, “It must be very hard losing your mom, especially since you’re only 9.”
“These last couple days have been rough.”, Denny continued, “First leaving her behind to come to South Park to avoid being dumped at an orphanage, then having to make the choice of whether or not to put her out of her misery. I mean, did I make the right choice? I keep thinking now that I’ll be going to hell for this.”
“You’re not going to hell”, Gerald reassured him, “You made a big decision and that required a lot of strength. It’s hard to lose somebody very important in you but your heart is in the right place because you realized what she was going through and made the choice for her sake. That makes you somebody with the courage and heart to know what is right, instead of easy.”
Denny sat up on the couch and pondered for a moment at what his father had just said. There was no doubt about it, every word of this made sense.
“You’re right”, he said, “This took a lot of guts but I thought of what she was going through and as much as I didn’t want to lose her, I thought that it wasn’t fair for her to have to suffer so I did the right thing.”
Denny reached forward and gave his dad a long-awaited hug and as he did so, felt more of the anguish from his loss becoming replaced by the strength of character.
There was sound coming from the stairs and Denny and Gerald looked over to see Kyle and Sheila descending from the second floor. Sheila looked down at what she figured would be a still gloomy scene but was taken aback seeing Denny sitting up with what looked like buried grief but figured that he was not at that stage yet. Kyle made straight for Denny and threw his arms around him in a tight embrace.
“Dude, I’m sorry for what happened.” said Kyle, with the sincerity that he possessed so much of, “If you need someone to talk to, I’ll always be here for you.”
“Thank you, Kyle”, said Denny, looking very touched, “I’ll always be here for you too.”
This became too much for Sheila. She went for both of them and hugged them both with tears running down her face.
“Hey, when’s the pizza going to be here?”, asked Denny, suddenly remembering about it..
“Oh sh*t, I forgot about that”, said Gerald, slapping his forehead and grabbing the phone to order the pizza.
“Hey, I just remembered,” said Denny, “Am I still starting school tomorrow?”
“Well I don’t know, Denny”, said Sheila, “I’ll leave that up to you. We can just delay that an extra day if you want.”
“Hmm, nah,” said Denny, making his mind up right off the top, “I think I’m ready for it. I don’t want to let things get in the way of that.”
“Well, alright,” Sheila looked surprised at his answer, “then we can go get you registered in the morning.”
“Ok $14.91, got it.”, Gerald was saying, as he hung up the phone, “What was that? You want to start school tomorrow, Denny?”
“Yeah, I say let’s do it”, said Denny, “I don’t want to only see Stan after school and I want to make more friends too.”
“Well, if that’s what you want to do, then I’m ok with it.”, said Gerald..
“I saw it earlier”, said Denny, thoughtfully, ”It looks tiny compared to the schools back in Arizona”
“Well remember now”, said Gerald, “this is a pretty small town compared to what you see back over there. The population isn’t very high, so the things in this town aren’t built to accommodate very many people.”
“At least there’s a mall here though.”, put in Kyle, “Most small towns don’t have those.”
“That’s true”, said Denny, thinking back to when he had lived in a small town himself, “I always thought it was odd when I compared two small towns I had lived in. one was a fair-sized place but didn’t even have it’s own police force, then one that was much smaller and did have one.”
Everyone had continued talking about the weird things that were found in small towns until the pizza arrived about half an hour later. They all sat down together and eagerly dug in to the pizza. For about ten minutes, there was silence, except for the occasional clinking of plates, glasses, and forks as they all continued to eat. After they all finished, Sheila grabbed all the dishes and carried them to the sink where they could hear the sounds of her washing everything.
“That pizza was pretty good, what’s it called?”, asked Denny.
“It’s from “Whistling Willie’s”, no Pizza Hut around here.”, said Gerald.
“Well, that sucks”, said Denny, shaking his head as he did so.
This brought silence again except for the sounds of Sheila washing the dishes. It wasn’t until Denny had let out a huge yawn that Gerald had immediately said, “Bedtime. Come on, you guys.”
Ike, who was dozing for the last ten minutes, jerked awake when Gerald spoke. “What was that?” he asked.
“It’s bedtime. You all have had a big day and have another one tomorrow”
The three boys got up and slowly made their way upstairs with Gerald in tow. After a minute, they heard Sheila come out of the kitchen and began to follow them.
“Now Denny, are you sure you’re ready to start school tomorrow?” asked Gerald.
“I think so”, said Denny, yawning as he did so, “what do you think about that?”
“I think that if you want to go through with it, then I say go for it.” said Gerald.
“Then I’ll do it” said Denny, “did you want me to wake up when Kyle does?”
“That should be fine”, said Sheila “I’ll take you up to the school in the morning.”
They climbed into bed and the parents each tucked them in and said goodnight then went toward Ike’s room to do the same. Kyle was the first one to fall asleep. For a few minutes, Denny could only hear the sound of deep, slow breathing from what was only visible in the dark as the figure that was Kyle. He could also hear the distant voices coming from Ike’s room.
As Denny was trying to go to sleep, he began to felt the anguish at what happened tonight and began to weep softly. He had reflected on how it had all happened so suddenly, that there had not been anytime for it to sink in. There was movement form Kyle and Denny had watched as Kyle sat up and looked over at Denny.
“Hey dude,” Kyle whispered, “are you alright?”
“I’m just still having a hard time with it”, said Denny.
Kyle moved toward Denny’s side and pulled him close to himself into a comforting hug. Denny had not even realized when he had fallen asleep in that same position.
Much later, the nightmare had begun. Denny was all alone in the hospital with his mom and all of a sudden, these green-gowned men in masks he begun to force Denny away, telling him that it was over, you can’t be here anymore. Denny had awoke shaking and in tears but when he fell back asleep and awoke in the morning, he had no recollection of this nightmare at all.
*End of Chapter 3*
Chapter 4- School’s a bitch
When Denny woke up the next morning, he found himself in the same position as he fell asleep in, and that was in Kyle’s comforting hug. The alarm clock went off suddenly, causing both boys to sit bolt upright. They both stood up and started to get dressed in silence. Denny had been trying to remember what had happened before he had gone to sleep.
“So Denny,” said Kyle, sleepily, “are you ready for school today?”
“I think so”, said Denny,” Do you guys get very many new kids?”
“Sometimes, but then something goes on and we never see them again”
“Is there any girls you like?” asked Denny, suddenly curious about that topic.
“Well, there was one…” said Kyle, “Her name was Rebecca. She was kind of weird, being home-schooled and all. She was my first kiss but then ended up being turned into a slut, causing her brother to beat me up.”
“That sucks”, said Denny, “There was one that I liked back home but she moved away.”
The boys carried on the conversation about girls as they finished getting dressed and washed up for breakfast. Denny started getting butterflies as the time grew closer to get ready to go to school. Like with all new things, Denny felt a little nervous about them and grew worried that things might not work out as planned. He supposed it was just a kid thing, and that he would grow out of it eventually. When the two boys arrived downstairs, they found Sheila and Ike already there.
“Good morning you two”, said Sheila, brightly.
“Morning” they said in return, grabbing cereal from the cupboard and each pouring themselves a bowl.
“So Denny, are you sure you still want to be registered for school today, after what happened last night?”, asked Sheila, cautiously.
“I’m kind of nervous about it”, said Denny, “but if I don’t get this over with now, I might not be able to pluck up the courage at a later date.”
“All right then,”, she said, then looked over at Kyle, “did you want to ride with us or just take the bus?”
“I'll come with you guys”, said Kyle, “I’m not in any hurry to put up with Cartman.”
“Well, as far as that goes, I don’t blame you for that.” said Denny, remembering the conversation from the night he arrived. Now that he thought about it, he wondered what kind of assh*le he was likely to be.
They finished up with breakfast, grabbed their backpacks, Sheila put Ike in his car seat, and they were on their way. Denny reflected again at how different things were here than back home. He was still trying to get used to the snow on the ground, remembering that it very rarely ever did so at home. When they pulled up into the school parking lot, Kyle got out and walked toward the playground while assuring Denny that he’d take care of Cartman. Sheila and Denny got out of the car, and after unstrapping Ike and watching him walking away toward the kindergarten part of the playground, walking through the front doors to the office.
The hallways were pretty empty, save for some staff members walking from place to place. As they walked into the office, they saw that Mackey was pacing down the hallway to the front of his office and looking pissed off about something.
“Goddamit, these little trouble makers taking a dump in the urinal again? M’kay? Are they trying to give me a heart attack or something? M’kay? and… Whoa!”, he hadn’t been paying attention to the front of the main office and jumped about a foot in the air when he saw Sheila and Denny standing there.
“Godammit! What the f- I mean, do you folks need help with something? M‘kay?” he asked, catching himself before blurting out something he’d regret.
“Yes Mackey, I want to register this young man here”. she said, looking down at Denny as she did so.
“What?”, he said, rubbing his eyes, “God no! Not another one of y-, uh, I mean, I’ll go get the registar.”
“What was that?!”, Sheila asked sharply, “What did you say?!”
“Nothing, nothing, m'kay?” said Mackey, looking embarrassed and walking to the other side of the office.
There was silence for a moment until they heard an outburst from where Mackey had disappeared.
“Goddamit! Do I have to do everything around here?!” Mackey had come back to where Denny and Sheila were, motioning them to follow him to his office.
“Looks like she’s not in today, m’kay?” said Mackey, attempting to keep his voice steady, “I guess I’m stuck with it, m’kay?”
He reached into his desk and pulled out a few blank sheets of paper, wrote some stuff on them, then handed them to Sheila.
“M’kay? Now, all that’s needed here is just the basics, m’kay? Name, address, birth date, blah, blah, blah, then this one is just the rules and regulations, just read, sign, and date, finally this one is just saying that shots records need to be up to date, sign and date. Let me know when you’re done, m’kay?”
Sheila took the papers that Mackey gave her and looked them over, suddenly realizing that that she had no idea of any of Denny’s information.
“Denny, could you fill this one out for me? I have no idea of any of you information.”, she asked him silently.
“Ok”, said Denny, “we should call the Arizona department of vital statistics later.”
“Good thinking”, said Sheila, “I’ll do that when I get back home.”
The information paper was pretty easy. Denny had almost forgot his social security number but then remembered he had grabbed it when he left home. He took it out, along with an I.D. he had been given back home. After a few minutes, he had finished it and had signed and dated everything and handed it all to Mackey, who had put it in a file folder and made copies of the I.D. and SS card, also putting them in it.
“M’kay, now that’s out of the way. You want me to call Kyle in here to give you a tour so you can start class?” Mackey asked.
“Uh, sure, I guess.” said Denny, unsure of himself.
“Well, have a good day and be safe!”, said Sheila, getting up and kissing Denny on the cheek as she took her leave. Denny could feel himself going red with embarrassment but Mackey didn’t seem to notice as he got on the phone and called for Kyle to come to the office. When he got off the phone and looked at Denny.
“M’kay, now as your counselor, m’kay, I want you to feel free to come to me if there’s something you need to talk about, m’kay? Being the new kid is tough, m’kay, but I think maybe since you have Kyle, m’kay, he can help make things easier for you, m’kay? Just know now, that I’m here for you too, m’kay?”
Just then, there was a knock on the door, and Kyle appeared in the doorway, looking apprehensive.
“Oh, hey dude,” said Kyle, looking relieved, “I was afraid Cartman was trying to set me up again.”
“M’kay, now Kyle, I would like you to show your brother around the school, m’kay? Make sure he can find things easily, m’kay?”
“Can I get a hall pass so I don’t get maced by the hall monitor?” asked Kyle.
“Of course”, said Mackey, scribbling out a hall pass for them, “if anybody gives you trouble, just bring them to me, m’kay?"
Kyle and Denny walked out of the office and into the hallways, with Kyle pointing out landmarks along the way.
“Dude, does he always do that?” asked Denny.
“Always do what?” asked Kyle as they walked by the cafeteria.
“The “m’kay“ thing. He was making me go crazy with that.” said Denny.
“Yeah, but you’ll get used to it.”, said Kyle, “It drove me nuts for a long time too.”
They stopped in front of the 4th grade classroom as Kyle put his hands out as if showing off an antique.
“Well, here we are. Welcome home.”
Kyle reached up and opened the classroom door.
The first thing to come into view when the classroom door opened was a mostly bald man with glasses, who Denny assumed could only be the teacher, along with two children, both of whom were girls (and pretty damn cute too). The first one had long, light blue hair and was wearing a black Pink Floyd t-shirt, the other, long, layered red hair with a blue streak down the right side and dark wash jeans with a red jacket. Denny had become aware that his mouth was wide open and had quickly closed it. Looking at Kyle, he saw the same thing, Denny quickly elbowed him in the ribs.
“Oh good, there you are Kyle”, said Garrison, “now we can get down to business with the new student intros. Now what I want you newbies to do is introduce yourselves, one at a time, tell us something about yourselves, then hobbies.”
Feeling nervous, Denny went over and stood next to the blue-haired girl while Kyle went back over to his seat. Denny began to feel increasingly nervous the longer he was at the front of the class. It felt as if there was a giant spotlight on him and the girls and being the only boy in the group he felt very shy about it.
“We’ll start with Ivy and go from the right.”. said Garrison, indifferently.
“Um, ok. My name is Ivy Valmont,” said the red-haired girl, nervously, “I’d rather kill myself than say I’m related to Cartman..”
“Ay!”, yelled a fat kid in the back who Denny guessed could only be Cartman.
“Shut the f*ck up back there!”, yelled Garrison, sharply and turned back to Ivy, “You were saying?”
“No! This is abuse!”, yelled Cartman, “I’m being disrespected right now!”
“What are you so pissed of about?” asked Kyle, “Did you gain another hundred pounds or something?"
There was an instant uproar of laughter from the class as Cartman turned bright red.
“SHUT UP YOU f*cking JEW” bellowed Cartman. “Unfortunately, my bitch-ass cousin has to stay with me.”
“Who, Ivy? We already know that, dumbass.” said Kyle, “We’ve seen her at your house for the past month.”
“Oh, goddamit!” yelled Cartman, “This day can’t get any worse!”
“Oh stop bitching.” said Kyle, calmly, “Just because Ivy says she hates you is just proof that she‘s human.”
“Everybody shut up!”, yelled Garrison, “Eric, go write a country song and Kyle, save the ripping of him for recess. Now, let’s get back to the task at hand.”
When the dust cleared, Denny could see a smirk on Kyle’s face and Cartman pouting. Ivy looked satisfied and Denny was trying very hard not to burst out laughing.
“Anyway, my hobbies include watching Disney movies, hanging out with friends, and theatre.” As Ivy finished up she glanced back at Garrison and waited.
“Very nice, Ivy”, said Garrison, “I’d have you take a seat but we’re out of spare desks in here. Just stay there for a minute and there should be some coming.”
“Next, let’s have Violet.”, the blue haired girl stepped forward, a free-styled aura in her wake.
“I’m Violet Shepherd, don’t forget it. I just moved here from a small town in PA. You probably all have never heard of it but who cares. I almost got expelled once from pulling a fire alarm, which I did because I felt like it. Any questions?”
Denny held his breath as Violet spoke, feeling like the wind was knocked out of him when she was done. He couldn’t figure out why but Violet seems so care-free about herself. He looked over at Kyle and saw that he couldn’t take his eyes off Ivy.
“Seems I’m not the only one who thinks these girls are hot”, he thought. He hadn’t even been paying attention when it was his turn to do his introduction.
“Ok, um, my name is Denny. Uh, I suck at introductions. Uh, I moved here from Arizona since, um, never mind. I’ve had a rough couple days so don’t ask, don’t tell. I happen to be Kyle’s half-brother, so if you mess with him, you mess with me, and I can see your smirk back there, fatass.”
Cartman jumped when Denny pointed at him. Denny had ended his introduction with a glare in Cartman’s direction
“Wow, looks like you got a new enemy there, Eric.“, said Garrison, looking at Cartman and shaking his head.
“Damn right”, Ivy added, also glaring at Cartman.
“Anyway, why don’t one of you go down to Mackey’s office and find out where the extra desks are?", said Garrison.
“Are you sure that’s a good idea?“ asked Denny.
“What do you mean, Denny?”
“He was pissed off enough when he had to register me this morning” said Denny.
“Yeah, that’s true”, said Violet, “somebody’s gotta pull that monkey outta his ass!”
Denny stopped dead as Violet spoke and became aware that he, once again, had his mouth wide open.
“Dammit, he better not piss me off.” said Garrison, “Never mind, I’ll do it. Just go ahead and get to know everyone in the class.”
“Aww, do we have to?”, asked Cartman, in a whiny voice.
“Yes, Eric. Now if I hear anymore bitching, I’ll have Ivy kick your ass. “ ,barked Garrison, as Ivy smirked at Cartman again.
Ivy, Violet, and Denny each walked to the middle of the classroom as the students each went over to them and shook hands.
“Dude, I felt awful about what happened last night.”, said Stan. Kyle punched him on the arm to shut him up but Denny pulled him away.
“Thanks dude, that means a lot.” said Denny, looking at Kyle who looked ready to pounce on Stan for having brought up the subject.
“What happened last night, Denny?”, asked Ivy, with a look of genuine concern.
“Yeah! Come on! We won’t hurt your feelings!”, asked Violet.
“Oh goddamit! See what you did Stan?!” Kyle said, enraged.
“Dude, settle down!”, said Denny, looking surprised, then looking back at the girls, “I’ll tell you at recess.”
“Sorry”, said Kyle, backing off, “I just want to protect you.”
“It’s fine dude“, said Denny, still surprised at Kyle’s reaction.
“Whatever it is,” said Ivy, genuinely, “I feel bad for whatever you went through.”
“Thank you, Ivy.”, said Denny, smiling at her
“I am too”, said Violet, sweetly, “Is there anything we can do?”
“Being my friend is perfect enough”, said Denny, also smiling at her.
Garrison came storming into the classroom, in an obvious bad mood.
“All right you little bastards, sit down and shut the f*ck up!”, he yelled.
“Goddamit, now what’s up his ass?” asked Stan, under his breath.
“Looks like you were right, Denny.”, saiid Garrison, “Mackey seems convinced that he has to do everything around here. He gave me a pissy rant about how everyone”s been up his ass about something. He’s going to wind up getting his ass kicked by someone today and I won’t be surprised if it’s me.”
At that moment, a bell rang overhead, causing a collective sigh of relief to go up and down the rows of desks.
“Oh sh*t”, said Garrison, “that’s recess and we haven’t got anything done today. Oh well, Mackey’s pissed me off already so I don’t care much today. We’ll just spend the day getting acquainted with our new students. Well, go on. Shoo, you little bastards.”
Everyone cheered as they stood up and walked outside for recess. Cartman made a beeline right for Ivy with revenge in mind. But, unfortunately for him, Ivy looked ready for him as Stan, Kyle, Kenny, Violet, and Denny made a circle around them, trapping Cartman.
“Uh, I’m gonna kick your ass for embarrassing me, Ivy!”, said Cartman, uncertainly and looking like a mouse being caught by a cat.”
“Well, what are you gonna do about it?” asked Ivy, glaring at Cartman.
Kyle pushed Cartman forward from behind so that Cartman was caught with a direct kick to the balls. Cartman was momentarily caught by surprised before crashing to the ground in agonizing pain. Other kids had saw this and looked scared at this sight and backed away quickly, as the group around Cartman walked away.
“So anyway,” said Ivy, as though nothing had happened, “what were we talking about in Garrison’s class?”
“Something about Denny’s past?”, Violet put in gently, “Oh wait, I think it’s better to let it go.”
“Hey new girl!,” called Clyde, bravely, “what’s up with the hair?”
“Come here and say that!” snapped Violet, but then turned back to Denny, anger gone, “You said you’re Kyle’s brother, right?”
“Yep”, said Denny, “I can already see that things have changed for the better.”, though he couldn’t completely shake off the depression from having said that. “It’s been a tough transition though and a tough last couple of days.”
“Hey, don’t feel ashamed about it.” said Ivy, “I’ve heard many things about Kyle, even though they’ve been said by Cartman and I’ve believed the opposite. I know that he has been making it easier for you .”
“Very true”, said Kyle, turning a little red, “It takes time but it works itself out.”
Cartman was back and looked pissed. He still was red-faced with embarrassment and pain. He looked like he had sneaked over to the group and was eavesdropping in the conversation.
“What a crybaby!”, laughed Cartman obnoxiously, “You gotta be kidding me!”
“You better shut the f*ck up before I make you!”, snapped Denny, suddenly furious.
“What are you gonna do?” asked Cartman, acting cocky about it.
Next thing Cartman knew, he was suddenly tackled to the ground by Violet, then her and Ivy had pinned Cartman’s arms behind his back while Denny had popped him right on the jaw, causing blood to fly out immediately. Then, Denny had socked Cartman in the stomach, causing to double over, then was thrown on the ground, nobody who had seen it dared say anything.
“That’s twice you got your ass kicked today!”, said Ivy, spitting on Cartman, who was now facedown, sobbing, “Maybe now you’ll shut the f*ck up when told to!”
The group had spent the rest of recess walking around the playground, getting to know each other. It had seemed as though Kyle and Ivy couldn’t keep their eyes off each other, while Denny started taking a liking to Violet.
“So, is it true that you live at Cartman’s house, Ivy?” asked Kyle, interested.
“Yeah and it sucks ass”, said Ivy, “his mom treats him like he’s the most wonderful thing in the world. He needs to go to a gym more than anything else. I swear, I wonder why that house doesn’t blow up from all the gas in it. His mom seems immune to it.”
Everyone shared a good laugh at that. The bell rang for recess to be over which everyone has groaned at, even though when they had got back into the classroom, Garrison didn’t pay any attention to them. Only after Cartman had dragged himself in 10 minutes later, did Garrison do anything at all.
“Well, well, Eric. Got your ass kicked by Ivy already, huh?" Garrison sneered.
“Not just her”, said Cartman, “that other kid too”, he pointed at Denny.
Garrison walked over to Denny, looking like he was going to yell at him. He than raised his hand and shook Denny’s.
“Nice one!”, he cheered, “I was hoping he’d be put in his place!”
After Garrison went back to his desk, Denny looked over at Kyle, who merely shrugged.
As Garrison had said before recess, he decided to just make it an easy day. He had recounted the f*cked up things that happened in town over the years, though thankfully, nothing about his personal life, which it seemed everyone was crossing their fingers that he’d avoid that subject. Everyone was relieved when the bell rang for lunch. Cartman had tried to sqeeze himself in a corner as Ivy and Denny had walked by, which being so fat to begin with, he had no success with that at all. Denny had playfully moved his fist toward Cartman’s temple, causing him to jump and scream, resulting in falling face-first to the floor. Everyone who saw this laughed evilly at him.
“Dammit, I miss Chef’s lunch food so much”, said Kyle, sadly, “It’s never been the same without him.”
“What happened?” asked Violet, looking concerned.
“Oh god, it was terrible”, said Stan, white-faced, “I still have nightmares about it.”
“He was brainwashed into thinking being a pedophile was ok thanks to a f*cked up club.”, explained Kenny, looking pissed.
There was a stunned silence while the newcomers digested this unwelcome piece of news.
“Hey, wait a second” said Denny suddenly, “I think I did hear about that. There was a huge memorial service for him and everything.”
“Yeah, and that started a huge revolt against this place. I think it was called “the super adventure club”, I think.”
“The exact one”, said Stan, nodding.
They had arrived at the cafeteria, today‘s lunch, a choice of a simple hamburger or hot dog with fries, and went to sit at a table.
Clyde and Craig were at the other side, and, as usual, Craig made his presence known by flipping everyone off. Kyle, Stan, and Kenny simply rolled their eyes. Ivy and Denny looked annoyed, but Violet stood up, looking pissed.
“Hey! You got a problem, assh*le?!”, she yelled, “’Cause if you do, I suggest you come over here!”
“Hey dude, calm down!”, said Denny, wide-eyed .
“He always does that, don’t let it get to you” said Stan, also surprised.
As they all ate, random people walked by their table, welcoming the newcomers. Tweek walked by, causing raised eyebrows due to his jitteriness, but maintained steady control while introducing himself to them. Wendy was very kind with them and emphasized how funny she had thought the Cartman ass-kicking was.
Back outside for recess, Cartman was nowhere to be seen. It was rumored that he was scared of Denny and Ivy. However, they had caught Clyde and Craig for the puns they had earlier. Violet had Craig in a wristlock, teaching him some respect. Ivy, meanwhile, was in the middle of giving Clyde a wedgie, while the others watched.
“Now, the next time you want to start sh*t, we’ll find out one way or another!” Ivy yelled furiously over Clyde screaming in agony.
All in all the school day had ended with one thing being clear, don’t f*ck with the new kids. On the bus ride home, the group had recounted everything that had gone on and wondered what they should do with their after school playtime.
A lot had gone on in the past three days and would take some time to get over what had happened but Denny knew that this was a good start.
*End of chapter 4*
As Garrison could hardly have given them homework, Denny, Kyle, Stan, Violet, Ivy, Kenny, and Cartman had the entire afternoon after school to themselves. Cartman was still livid from being picked on at school but could hardly do anything about it since he didn’t want to admit to his mom that he got his ass whooped by a girl. This pissed him off even more and he was resigned to mumbling furiously under his breath.
“Stupid assh*les…. Disrespecting me… some assh*le friends you guys are…”
“So, what do you guys want to do now?”, asked Violet, as though she couldn’t hear the mumbling.
“How about we go buy Playboys?”, suggested Kenny.
“Like you could afford those, you poor piece of crap.” muttered Cartman.
“Oh, go do everyone a favor and go kill yourself, before I do it for you.” snapped Ivy, glaring at him.
This shut him right up and resigned him to muttering under his breath again while staring at the ground.
“Let’s go play laser tag?” suggested Denny, as though nothing had happened.
“That sounds good”, said Violet, smiling at him, “I haven’t done that in so long.”
“There’s a place not too far from here.”, noted Stan, pointing toward the east, “It’s a nice place.”
As they began to walk to where the laser tag place was, they had passed by Bebe and Annie, who looked disgustedly at the group. Ivy and Violet looked like they were going to say something to them, but thought better of it. When they got to the plaza of the laser tag place however, Stan quickly turned around and started walking the other way.
“Stan, where are you going?”, asked Kyle, puzzled.
“It’s those goddamn scientology assh*les again.”, said Stan, still walking the other way, looking back over his shoulder every few seconds, hoping they hadn’t seen him.
“What the f*ck is scientology?”, asked Denny, confused as hell.
“This stupid cult that believes the stupidest sh*t you’ve ever heard.”, said Stan, simply
“I’ve never heard of them either.” said Violet.
“Me neither”, said Ivy, “Even in as many populated places I’ve been in.”
“Now what?” asked Kenny, looking disappointed.
“Bowling?”, suggested Kyle.
“That’s about the only good part of that town in PA I was at.”, said Violet, “but why the hell not?”
“Nice”, remarked Denny, smiling, “bowling kicks ass.”
“This probably doesn’t matter to anybody,” said Ivy, “but where did the fatass go?”
Denny simply shrugged, “I don’t even remember him being behind us.”
“I’m not worried about it.” Kyle said, shrugging.
“Yeah, f*ck him.” said Violet, nodding
“Oh well, if he gets himself killed, it‘ll be doing us all a huge favor.” Ivy said, savagely.
As the group walked through their town, they saw just how busy the small town was, and this made it even more cramped than it appeared. Denny couldn’t help but feel something didn’t feel quite right. He looked around in all directions while they all walked and unconsciously moved closer next to Violet and Ivy, but was unable to place why he had felt uncomfortable all of a sudden.
“Hey Violet,”, whispered Denny, in a shaky voice, “does something feel funny to you?”
“What do you mean?” asked Violet, “I know this place is still new for us.”
“I just mean with all the crowd around this part of town, compared to near the laser tag place and Cartman disappearing out of nowhere.”, continued Denny.
“Well, maybe it’s just your intuition.”, said Violet, shrugging.
“What wrong?” asked Ivy.
“Something just feels funny.”, Denny told her.
“What time is it?”, asked Kyle, suddenly.
Denny looked at his watch, “It’s about 4:30”.
“Damn”, said Kyle, “Why is time going so quickly? We were let off on homework too.”
Unfortunately, it would turn out that it seemed that they weren’t the only ones who had found out that there were those scientology people by the laser tag place. Upon arrival at the bowling alley, they found it packed with kids from school.
“Aww! What the hell gives?”, said Stan, angrily, “Now what the f*ck do we do?”
“I guess we could still go play video games before it gets any later.”.
“God dammit!” yelled Stan, throwing his hat to the ground in frustration.
“We can stop by the library and get playboys?”, suggested Kenny again.
“Dude, have you ever read those?” asked Denny, eyebrows raised.
“Hell yeah, dude.” said, Kenny, looking excited.
“Dude, that’d be kickass!” said Violet, also looking excited.
Denny had to laugh at this. He didn’t know why but he couldn’t help but begin to feel attracted to Violet. She was just so, cool.
“Uh oh!” said Ivy, teasingly, “Denny likes Violet!”
“Huh?”, said Denny, jerking out of his trance, “What was that last bit?”
“But you do, don’t you?”, said Violet, dreamily.
“Well all right, I’ll be honest,” said Denny, deciding to come right out and say it, “Yes, I do like Violet.”
“Really?”, said Violet, as though she couldn’t believe what had been said.
“Yes”, said Denny.
“And I like Ivy!” Kyle blurted out suddenly, clapping his hands to his mouth and looking horrified while he got looks from the whole group.
“Seriously?”, said Ivy, looking punch drunk.
“Whoa there girl!” said Violet, moving in front of Ivy, who looked as if she might faint.
Denny looked at Ivy too. She had a huge grin on her face. Kyle had stepped behind her and put his hands firmly on her shoulders, holding her steady.
“Hey Ivy” said Kyle, with worry in his voice, “why don’t you sit down for a minute until you calm down?”
“Sorry”, said Ivy, shaking her head a little, “Hearing that is just a dream come true. I was hoping to hear that ever since this morning and now both you and Denny are brothers with girlfriends”
“Still though”, said Denny, also worried, bending down to look into her eyes, “just try to calm down a little bit.”
Denny’s first impression of feeling something wasn’t right would come true as they suddenly noticed that things had gotten quiet on the town’s main street, exactly the opposite of what things were earlier.
As if suddenly realizing this, Stan suddenly looked over his shoulder like he suspected someone was following them.
“You guys,”, Stan suddenly spoke out, starting to look worried, “I think Denny was right earlier when he said something didn’t seem right.”
There was a moment’s pause and then, they all tore off, running full-tilt to the nearest building they could find. Taking refuge in the library. For it being close to closing time, the library was predictably quiet except for a kindly looking older looking man in a simple green polo shirt and black sweatpants who was by the front desk, talking to the library assistant.
Having not been to the public library very much, Stan, Kyle and Kenny didn’t know too much about the library assistant except that he seemed a very polite and kind person and very helpful to the boys when they had been to the library in the past.
“So I’ve felt that certain books are very enjoyable , no matter what they are, if you take the time to read them”, The Man was saying, starting to walk toward the exit. As he walked by the group, he noticed that they appeared terrified about something.
“My now, what’s the matter with you kids?”, he asked, looking concerned.
“W-we were just coming in to look around.”, said Ivy, bravely.
“But, surely you kids knew that the library is closing in 5 minutes?”, he asked, before pulling out a silenced pistol, pointing it at the library assistant as soon as he turned around and cried out. Too late, the maniac had made a direct hit, shooting the librarian point-blank on the forehead.
“Jesus Christ!”, yelled Kyle, looking like he intended to run outside but the maniac had pointed the pistol at him.
“Not so fast”, hissed the Maniac, “Don’t even think about it, though now that you’re next to the door, you can lock it for me to keep anybody from coming in or out. That or your fate will be the same as that one over there.” He pointed to the dead librarian.
“Just do it, Kyle!”, screamed Ivy, on the verge of tears.
Kyle decided he didn’t have a choice. Thinking that he was putting his friends in danger for doing it but at the same time knowing that it would come to the same thing, he reached up and locked the library door.
“Good”, said the Maniac, sneering, “This is making everything so much simpler. Now listen up kids, we’re going to pull off a little heist tonight. If you all behave and do what I tell you, and keep your little mouths shut, nobody dies. Get it?”
“What do we get out of it?”, asked Kenny, bravely.
“Your lives” said the Maniac, “and I’ll ask the questions here.”
“What are you going to do?”, asked Violet, shakily, making Denny want to reach out and hug her.
The Maniac was busy behind the librarian’s desk, on the computer.
“If all goes well, and by that I mean if I don’t have to kill you all, we are going to make this whole town pay the biggest debt it’s ever had.”, said the Maniac.
“Which is what?”, asked Kyle.
“Godammit, I will ask the questions here!”, the Maniac snapped, banging his fist on the desk angrily.
“Well, if we’re going to help,”, said Ivy, “we should at least know what we’re helping with.”
She said this in a reasonable tone that made the Maniac look over at her, anger gone.
“You know, I think I like you.” said the Maniac, “That seems perfectly reasonable.”
“You all know of course, that South Park was founded in 1864 by pioneers who traveled among the plains of the Midwest, right?”
“Not at all.” Violet shrugged, “I’m from Pennsylvania.”
“New York”, said Ivy.
“Arizona”, said Denny.
“Enough!”, spat the Maniac, “Ahem. Well anyway, you natives must be wondering what the deal is with all the chaos that this town attracts?”
“That’s how it all started?”, asked Stan.
“Exactly”, said the Maniac, picking up the computer and moving it so that it was in better view for the kids to see it and motioning for then to come over to it.
“I’ve been researching it for a long time and I’ve noticed there seems to be a trend that’s been in the works since this town was founded. There once was a newspaper based on the comings and goings around the area. It hasn’t been around for a long time, however, but I believe whatever might’ve been going on to trigger it all, lies in those papers.”
“But, if it hasn’t been around in such a long time, how would we even begin to find out where to find it?”, asked Violet.
“I think”, said the Maniac,, “that these scrolls, like other prints that were around throughout the years, can be found in the library’s basement. These in particular, are too old and valuable to be kept anywhere that they could be damaged, but they would be hidden away, like the remnants of this town’s founder, John Wesley Powell.
Denny had been listening to all of this with awe, completely forgetting that they were being held captive by a maniac.
“So wait a minute,” said Ivy, “if you already know about all of this, then why do you need us?”
“To make sure that things go as I plan and to show people that I’m willing to sacrifice children to get what I’m after.”, said the Maniac.
Violet let out a small sob, with a nervous glance at Denny, who put a comforting arm around her.
“So, wait a minute,”, said Denny, “you believe this is going to be the undoing of whatever might be the trigger of the sh*t around here?”
“Exactly”, said the Maniac, “I have heard that Powell had built an underground channeling network which he had used to gain easy and quick access to different strategic points in town, all of which branched from his mansion.”
“Like what?”, asked Stan.
“Like I said, these strategic points branched off from his mansion which gave him quick and easy access to these places. These included the police station, the bank and”, there was a sudden manic gleam in his eye, “the library”.
“If these rumors are true, then this underground network would still exist today and destroying it would be the undoing of this town.”
“Whoa”, said Stan. “That sounds kinda messed up. I see what my uncle Jimbo was saying about wanting to preserve history, even if it is messed up if this is all true.”
“What are you talking about?”, asked Kenny asked the Maniac, “This sounds like something Mel Gibson would think up.”
“You don’t believe it? “ asked the Maniac, “All right fine then, enough of the history lesson. Let’s go down to the basement and put my theory to work then, shall we?””
*End of Chapter 5*
The Maniac had pulled out three pairs of handcuffs, one pair for one couple. This part of it wasn’t so bad, at least. Denny with Violet, Ivy and Kyle (Ivy looked dreamy about this again, Kyle, smug), and Stan with Kenny. The Maniac was behind all three groups with the pistol pointed at the back of Kenny’s head. After walking to the back of the library, they had found what appeared to be an office with a locked door. The Maniac seemed prepared for this however, breaking the glass with the butt of the pistol and reaching in to unlock the door. At first glance, there appeared to but nothing out of the ordinary, that is, until the Maniac noticed a trap door in the far corner that appeared hidden under a cart full of books, apparently to keep the trapdoor hidden.
At first, it seemed that these books had distracted the Maniac for a moment, as he walked over and looked at them. Then he knocked the cart out of the way, mumbling under his breath, “sh*t, who the hell finds that interesting?”
“I had found another one of your little friends earlier near the other side of town.”, he said, quietly “I managed to keep him quiet about this little plan of mine. He should be showing up soon with some goods to help us out”
The others looked at each other and Ivy couldn’t help but voice her disappointment, “Damn, I was hoping he was dead.”.
“Guess that explains why he had disappeared earlier.” said Denny.
“Well, he will be if he doesn’t do what I told him or squeals to the police.”, said the Maniac., “Now, let’s see what we have here. Damn it, I knew it would be locked.”
He held out the pistol and took aim at the lock, shooting the lock twice and managing to get it off the handle of the trap door and almost setting down the pistol to open the trap door. Unfortunately, he realized this would be a stupid idea and instead pointed the gun at Stan and Kenny.
“Open it or I’ll send you a one-way ticket to hell.”, the Maniac growled.
Reluctantly, the two obeyed. There was a huge effort by the two boys and at last, it was open. The Maniac had the pistol pointed at the entrance of the basement, readying for any risk of attack.
“Something just occurred to me.”, said Denny, “If Cartman is helping you with whatever it is you’re doing, where does he come into all this?”
“If my sources are correct, he will be assisting us in the final stages of my plan. This will be a sacrifice on his part but judging by your looks, I would think you don’t give two sh*ts about him., said the maniac. “Are we ready to do this? Let’s go.”
The Maniac ushered Denny and Violet into the basement first, Violet looking scared, Denny, determined. As it seemed an attack was imminent upon first entering the basement, Denny felt determined to be ready to help his friends. However, the first sweep into the basement showed a cavernous-looking place with torch-lit walls that showed them nothing but the unexpected. There were cobwebs everywhere, giving the impression that this place had not been touched in several years. The Maniac pulled a torch out of one of the walls to better investigate what was hidden. Had he not done this, they would’ve walked into one of hundreds of bookshelves full of ancient-looking newspapers and magazines that were worn with age.
“Stop a minute”, said the Maniac, pausing to look at the worn newspapers.
“Oh my god”, said Kyle, “I would never have guessed this was all still around.”
“Yes”, said the Maniac, squinting at the dates of some of the newspapers but reluctant to touch them for fear of them turning to dust, “this is what I’ve been talking about. This stuff is much too old and valuable to risk having out in the open. It’s stuff that historians would pay millions for to make it all the more easier to know this region’s history.”
The Maniac had carefully taken down a couple likely-looking newspapers and studied them under the torchlight.
“Hmm, this is dated back to 1867, three years after the town was founded. Let’s see here, “Controversy erupting into the rumors of John Wesley Powell building underground caverns throughout the city. Wesley says and I quote, “Even if this were true, I would be least likely to bring it to public’s attention, now wouldn‘t I?” This seems a likelihood to be proven true.” That bastard! He plays it off like nothing’s going on and lies to everyone’s faces about it!”
The Maniac looked enraged and his frustration, he looked as if he might snap.
“Whoa, calm down dude!” said Denny, looking scared, “Remember what you came here for?”
“You’re right,” said the Maniac, “Sorry. Sometimes my anger and frustration get the better of me.”
He put the scroll he had been reading back where he found it and began to look through the next one.
“This one looks like it’s following the last one. Hmm, this dated April 7th, 1867. “This newspaper would like to issue an apology to J. W. Powell for the suspicion of possible activity that was believed to have been taking place among us. These rumors have since been disproved.” Goddamit, these people were so damn stupid! After they already said it was likely to be true, now they back off?!”
He looked even more enraged than before until he noticed that there was a place, where the scroll he was reading had been, among the bookshelf. It looked as if had been broken off at one time. The Maniac had placed a hand on it and felt around the area. As if on instinct, he took the pistol and started hitting the spot, seeming convinced that there would be some kind of clue that would reveal itself if this spot on the book shelve would be removed.
Stan began to feel increasingly nervous as though he knew that the Maniac would find what he was looking for. There was a knocking sound that was suddenly heard very distantly away. The Maniac had paused for a minute as the knock was heard again.
“Sit tight a minute kids”, said the Maniac, starting to walk back toward the way they had come in, “That must be your fat little friend with our supplies. Don’t move an inch until I get back or I’ll shoot you where you stand.”
He climbed back the trapdoor into the library again. As soon as he was gone, panic broke out from every member of the group.
“Holy sh*t, what’s going to happen to us?!”, asked Kyle, hysterically.
“Now calm down Kyle”, said Stan, “maybe we’ll come out of this alive.”
“Yeah, but what will happen in the meantime?” asked Ivy.
“I think whatever this dude’s after will make him back off”, said Denny.
“But what shape will we be in when we get out of here?” asked Kenny.
“Everyone calm down!”, yelled Violet, “maybe if we play our cards right, we can get this guy off our backs.”
“But what about Cartman?” asked Denny.
“I thought nobody here gives a sh*t about him?”, asked Ivy.
“Maybe not but we still have to figure out what we’re going to do.” said Denny.
“Shh! I think he’s coming back!” said Stan.
Sure enough, the Maniac had come back, along with none other than Cartman. Cartman looked as nervous and scared as the others but still found the nerve to look at them and smirk.
“Ha ha! Look at you assh*les now! All that ridicule this morning and you’re the ones who end up this way!”
“Shut up!”, snapped the Maniac, “Just get everything prepared and remember our deal, you are going to be the one who is the trigger and ground for the explosives.”
“Whoa, wait a second!”, shouted Ivy, “You’re going to kill Cartman?!”
“Shut up, Ivy!”, yelled Cartman, “I’m doing this town a huge favor by helping out this awesome dude I met and I won’t let you get in the way!”
“Shut up, both of you!”, snapped the Maniac again, “Now, where we’re we? Ah, I remember.”
He pulled out the pistol again and began the work on chipping away at the cracked wood on the bookshelf. As more of the wood fell away, a small piece of paper was revealed. The maniac hurriedly pulled it out and unfolded it.
“Whoever finds this note, I made a horrible mistake with making my underground channel. Unfortunately, I could never pluck up the nerve to put things right for fear that I would kill a bunch of innocent people, however, I came to the realization that there would one day be someone who would realize what these events were triggered by and become hell-bent on fixing everything. To that person, I give them these instructions on what to do with this. The most important thing is that explosives must be placed at all passageways and joined together at the center of the point of it all. There also needs to be a sacrifice on your part to act as the center point and grounding of the explosives. I have already done a lot of the placing of explosives for you and if all goes well it will all be undone. Good luck and Godspeed.”.
The Maniac finished reading the note to find the kids all with mouths open wide.
“Now can we get this over with so I can get my eternal bliss?, Cartman whined.
“The only question is where is the passageway to the heart of the channel?, the Maniac asked, with his hands on his hips.
“I bought the stethoscope like you asked.”, said Cartman.
“Good”, said the Maniac, smiling.
“What good would that do?”, asked Kenny.
“You’ve never seen this done before?”, asked the Maniac, “It’s quite simple really. I just run the stethoscope along the wall and tap it with the pistol. The spot where everything is hidden will sound different when I hit it than anywhere else.”
The Maniac put the stethoscope in his ears and placed the pistol against the wall and began to tap along it, moving a few inches along each time. He suddenly stopped, marked the spot and pulled out a sledge hammer from the bag that Cartman had bought with him, and began to hack away. The end result had them looking down a roughly cut passageway, built nearly as tall as it was wide. Like the room they were in, the passageway was cavernous and creepy-looking, lit with torches that roared to life when the passage had opened up.
“Let’s go”. said the Maniac, looking excited.
The kids nervously began to walk into the passageway with the Maniac in close tow. They couldn’t help but look around at the sight. It came as a shock to Denny when he realized that the stuff on the walls was plastic explosives lined up all along the walls.
“sh*t, I hope we make it out of this alive”, Denny thought, uncomfortably. All the stuff Kyle had told him about Kenny’s abilities over life and death all came rushing back to him, making his heart beat uncomfortably fast.
They were walking about 100 feet along the passageway when they came to a fork which made everyone gasp at the sight. It seemed that this what Powell had worked so hard on in the old days. What everyone’s sight was met with was what looked like an archway, with what looked to be wires driven through it. This apparently was what Powell was saying about needing to have explosive triggered at the same time. The Maniac moved closer to the archway and studied it for a moment as though he was putting two and two together.
“This,”, said the Maniac in hushed tones, “this is what I’ve been waiting for. Powell must’ve backed out of the task when he figured out what was required in this task. It seems as though he had not taken care of the final process of linking all the explosives together. Cartman, give me the explosives you have and if you’re prepared, step into the archway.”
“Well, goodbye assh*les. Guess there’s nothing left to say to any of you except screw you guys, for the last time.”
“Whoa, I can’t let this happen.”, said Kyle.
“What are you saying?” asked Kenny, “You know this is the best thing to have happen.”
“But I just feel too bad to watch this happen.”, said Kyle, “I don’t know why, but I do.”
“Back off assh*le, you’re gonna ruin everything!”, snapped Cartman.
What came next would come as a surprise. The Maniac pulled out a set of keys and walked over to the others, taking the handcuffs off of them. The kids were stunned momentarily, staring at him, mouths wide open.
“I-I can’t explain it but I’ve grown to like you kids so much. I-I just wouldn’t feel right killing you kids. I’m letting you all go. Please just go. Head back the way we came as fast as you can. There’s nothing left for me here. Seems to me that nothing’s going to change your mind, is it, Cartman?”
“f*ck no”, said Cartman, “I want my eternal bliss already.”
“Then I will join you. I feel I’ve let God down and that it’s better for all of us if I snuff it now. Goodbye, kids. Don’t let yourselves be tainted by what I’ve been. I will give you 10 minutes before I hit the trigger. Get as far away from the town square as you can.”
“Come on you guys”, said Kyle, finally able to tear his eyes away from Cartman, “Come on, hurry!”
They were off, running as fast as they possibly could and not daring to look back or slow down. Back down the passageway, into the library basement, through the trapdoor, out of the office, and to the front doors of the library. As the door was locked, they instead threw themselves through the window, piercing their skin but desperate to put as much distance behind them as possible. Denny only dared to look at his watch when they had reached the cold night air. They had only 30 seconds left. He looked around to make sure the others were all there with him and screamed in fright as he saw Violet clutching a stitch in her chest within range of the blast that was only seconds away.
“Violet!”, he screamed, and without pausing to think, he tore back after her, picking her off the ground and tearing off as fast as possible. Only 10 seconds now, he was still in danger. 5,4,3,2,1, BOOM.
Denny was thrown up into the air, with Violet in his arms. They both landed 20 feet away with a sickening thud. It took Violet a few seconds to come around, weak and shaking, she slowly picked herself off the ground as the others were running after them. She looked around and saw Denny, lying feet away and a limp figure.
“DENNY!”, she screamed, forcing herself to her feet and moving, rather recklessly than she should’ve with her injuries, to Denny’s limp body. Already losing control, and hysterical, she clutched his body as close to her as possible as the others joined her. Kyle couldn’t take it in. Almost crashing to the ground in shock and caught by Stan, after all that they went through tonight, this was just too much.
The blessed sounds of sirens screaming into the night came screeching into view when paramedics rushing to the kids and firefighters starting to try getting control of the flames that were pouring from the entire town square.
The paramedics had bent over Denny, though with difficulty as Violet would not let go. It seemed hopeless as they groped for a pulse in Denny’s carotid artery, however it was a huge shock when the hopeless was realized.
“Hey! We need to get this young man to the hospital right now! We have a pulse but he’s lost a lot of blood!”
“Wha?”, said Violet wiping her tear-streaked face. She was having difficulty breathing but looking enormously relieved.
“We’ll airvac him!”, said a paramedic, “He looks to be in a coma!”
“Coma”, said Kyle, “just like his mom. Oh my god…”, he fainted.
It would turn out that Violet would be airvaced to the hospital too, being that she refused to let Denny go. Most of the injuries sustained were smoke inhalation. Kyle was unconscious getting to the hospital, everyone was to stay overnight and most of the day tomorrow for the recovery and shock therapy. Violet had a broken leg and fractured pelvis, and Denny was in a coma and had a few broken ribs, broken right arm, and a mild concussion. It was unclear if he would recover.
It was considered the worst tragedy in South Park history.
End of Chapter 6 (No it’s not over yet.)
The call came at 2 in the morning. The phone rang shrill in the quiet Broflovski household. Just as it rang for a third time, Sheila answered it.
“Hello?”, she croaked, groggily.
“Is this Sheila Broflovski?”, asked the voice on the other side.
“Yes it is!”, said Sheila, suddenly wide awake, “is this about the boys?!”
“Yes it is”, said the voice, “By the way, this is Detective Yates. Now are you sitting down, Mrs. Broflovski?”
“I am now.”, said Sheila, “What’s going on?”
“Of the seven children reported missing this afternoon, six were found.”, said Yates.
“Why do I not like the sound of six out of seven?”, asked Sheila, suspiciously.
“There was one casualty reported”, said Yates, sourly.
“Oh god”, said Sheila, putting her hands over her mouth, “So wait, what the hell happened?:”
“Well, from the information we’ve gathered so far, the kids were being held hostage in the library in what was an attempt to destroy the town square, which unfortunately succeeded.”
“Wait a minute, they helped in all this?”, asked Sheila, shocked.
“Not directly. Like I said, they were being held against their will. They were being forced to do this guy’s bidding.”, said Yates.
“Ok, so back up. What’s this about one casualty?”, asked Sheila.
“Of the seven children, including two of yours, one got killed in the struggle. His name was Eric Cartman.”
“What what what?!”, said Sheila, “and what about my boys?”
“The one called Denny is in bad shape at the hospital, in a coma, and Kyle sustained injuries and emotional trauma but will be ok. Denny was caught in the blast, so that‘s why his injuries are far more severe.”
“Ok, I think I’ve heard all that I need to for now”, said Sheila, shaking Gerald awake, “There will of course be a press conference?”
“There’s still a lot that needs to be clarified but yes there will.”, said Yates.
“Well, thank you for letting me know. GERALD WAKE UP!”
Gerald sat bolt upright and blinked a few times.
“What’s going on?”, asked Gerald.
“We need to go to that hospital right now!”
“For what?”, asked Gerald, curiously.
“Don’t give me that “for what” sh*t! Our boys are there that’s “for what“!”
“Are they dead?”, asked Gerald, looking worried.
“Just get your ass in gear!”, yelled Sheila, smacking Gerald upside the head.
“All right!”, said Gerald.
They were dressed and on the road in ten minutes, and each in different stages of nervousness. There were emergency vehicles everywhere around the downtown area. The town square was still erupted in flames as everything was still out of control with panic. They were at the hospital in 10 more minutes. Bursting through the front doors, Sheila went straight to the receptionist’s desk.
“You need to tell me where my children are!”, Sheila demanded.
“Ok, and your children’s first and last names?”, asked the receptionist, patiently.
“Broflovsik! Kyle Broflovski! Denny Creed too!”
The receptionist typed the names into the computer. There was a moment’s pause while the screen loaded.
“Ok, let’s see here. They were moved to the ICU about an hour ago. I can call someone to bring you down there?”
“Yes please and I’m sorry if I appeared bullying.”. Sheila added.
“Not at all.”, said the receptionist, kindly, “I understand completely”.
She picked up her phone and dialed an extension. There was silence as she waited for someone to answer.
“Hello Shannon? I have the parents of the little boys who were brought down there about an hour ago? Can you send someone up here to take them over to see the boys? Thank you.”
The nurse from the ICU came to meet Sheila and Gerald after about two minutes. The walk was pretty short, though it seemed much longer, given the situation. Once there, the nurse pulled out a clipboard.
“Let’s see here, Kyle is in room 7 and Denny is room 13. I must warn you though, Denny is still in bad shape right now. He is hooked up to several machines, meaning that it’s not an easy thing to take in when you do see him.”
It would turn out that both Kyle and Violet were both with Denny, sitting on either side of him with their heads bowed. Once Sheila and Gerald saw the severity of it all, they broke down, causing Kyle and Violet to turn around. Kyle took one look at his parents, and walked straight over to them, breaking down as well.
“What did they say?”, asked Sheila softly, “When will he come out of it?”
“They don’t know if he ever will.”, said Kyle, “The emotional trauma we’ve been through tonight has been hell."
”I know, Kyle. I don’t mean to interfere.”, said Sheila, sounding hurt, though she knew what he must be feeling.
“It was like a scene from a bad horror movie. The guy who was holding us hostage seemed absolutely out of his mind, yet when he confirmed everything, it was just crazy. Then the explosion happened, oh god.”
“Try to calm yourself down. You’ve had a rough night and you just need to get some rest. Who’s the cutie with Denny?”, asked Sheila trying to get Kyle’s mind off of the night’s events.
“That’s Violet”, said Kyle, “She’s Denny’s girlfriend. She hasn’t let him out of her sight all night.”
“But by the looks of it, she has broken bones. Shouldn’t they set those before she moves around?”
“There’s a broken leg and fractured pelvis.”, said Kyle, “She’s been moved around by a wheelchair but like I said, she refuses to let Denny out of her sight,, so they agreed to take her to the OR in the morning.”
“Poor dear”, said Sheila, sadly, “I was told that they got caught in the blast?”
“That was the scariest thing I’ve ever seen in my life”, said Kyle, wide-eyed, “Violet had been out of breath within range of the blast, Denny tore after her, the force of the blast threw them into the air and knocked them twenty feet away and he was…”, he couldn’t finish but the look on his face told it all.
Silence had fell as everybody just stared at Denny and desperately wished for there to be any sign of life but there was only the beeping of the heart monitor and the sound from the respirator. Looking over at Violet, they saw that she was dozing, yet had a firm grip Denny’s arm, head resting on Denny’s chest.
There was sudden movement outside as Ivy, Stan, and Kenny, all in hospital gowns and looking exhausted., had arrived from their respective rooms. Ivy took one look at Denny and stopped dead in the doorway, looking scared to death at the sight. Kyle walked over to her and gave her a long hug.
“I’m sorry, I just can’t stand to see him in that condition.”, said Ivy, shaking, “After all that other sh*t tonight and now this.”
“Did the doctor come in yet?”, asked Kenny, looking sadly at Kyle.
“Not yet”, said, Kyle, “He’s due around 8.
“What’s the verdict?”, asked Stan.
“He’s in a coma. There’s no telling when or if he will ever recover”.
“If it wasn’t for me, he wouldn’t have ended up like this!”, cried Violet , shrilly.
“Violet, don’t say that. You know how deeply he cares about you. He wouldn’t have done anything different than that.”, said Kenny.
“It’s all my fault!”, she insisted.
“No it isn’t, Violet. You just need to calm down and rationalize what you’re saying. Did you want me to ask the nurse to give you a valium?”
“I just can’t stand it! If you must have them give me a valium, tell them I want to stay with him!”
“I’ll do it.”, said Gerald, who hadn’t moved an inch or said anything until that moment.
He walked out into the hallway and walked over to the nurse’s station, spotting the nurse they had seen earlier.
“Excuse me, the young lady in here is having a hard time with the condition of Denny, can we give her something to calm her down?”
“Not a problem”, said the nurse, kindly, “did you want me to take her back to her room?”
“No, I think I will go according to her wishes and let her stay with Denny”, said Gerald, thoughtfully.
The nurse went off to the supply room to grab the medicine for Violet while Gerald went back to Denny’s room.
“How are we doing in here?”, he asked.
“I feel so sorry for her”, said Kyle, “I don’t know what to do. I mean, I’m surprised I’m not acting like that.”
“It’ll be the emotional trauma from the night’s events”, said Gerald, wisely.
The nurse walked in carrying a few syringes, which caused Kyle to tense up.
“All right everybody, what do you say we all get some sleep? It’s been a big day.”
“Whoa, wait”, said Kyle, “we have to get poked again? I hate needles.”
“No, I just inject this into your IVs and the medicine will go directly into your blood streams. What say we all head back to our respective rooms and get settled in?”
“But I don’t want to leave him.”, Kyle protested, “and I don’t want him to leave me”, he thought.
“I’ll grab you a bed and move it here next to your brother’s and you and Miss Violet can share keeping him company, how’s that?”
“Thank you”, said Kyle.
“I also brought with me some light sedatives to relax each of you and hopefully it’s enough for you to sleep.”
Stan and Kenny each said good night and went back to their rooms. Ivy gave Kyle another big hug. She thought about for a few seconds and then kissed him. He felt himself go red but his parents didn’t seem to notice.
“Good night, everybody. Kyle, if anything happens, please let me know right away.”
It became too much. Kyle went over to where Violet was , next to Denny, and hugged her. They both sat arm-in-arm together and watched Denny in his dreamless, and indefinite sleep. Eventually, the medicine did it’s job, putting them both to sleep. Sheila had carefully picked Kyle up as Gerald moved his IV pole, and set him in the bed the nurse had brought in.
The nurse had quietly come back in, carrying four bags, two for Kyle and Violet each.
“What are those for?”, whispered Sheila.
“These are just fluids to keep the kids hydrated. The doctor had instructed us to do this now since he doesn’t want them to have anything to eat or drink until he sees them at 8.”
“But what about Denny? Are you giving him fluids too?”
“The doctor instructed us to do so every few hours. Even though he’s in a coma we still monitor his intake levels. He will remain here in the ICU so he can be closely monitored.”
“Did they find out anymore about what happened?”, asked Gerald.
“There’s still a lot that needs to be investigated. The entire town square is destroyed. The explosion happened around 12:30 this morning.”
“We saw the fires in that area on the way up here, so it’s been 3 hours?”
“Yes, but of course the main priority was to get the kids over here. From what I heard earlier, the ER was a madhouse.””
“So everybody was stable when they got here except Denny and Violet?”
“Well, they were all of course in advanced states of shock and had some smoke inhalation.”, said the nurse, “Denny was believed dead at the scene but the paramedics detected a pulse. Naturally, he was airvaced over here along with Miss Violet here, who was blaming herself for what happened.”
“Yeah, she was doing that earlier too, when Kyle was telling us about the explosion.”, said Sheila, sadly.
“We did our best to reassure her that it wasn’t her fault but it just tore into her mind too much.”, said the nurse.
This whole conversation was no more coherent to Denny than anything else except what his comatose mind was coming to dream. Out of nowhere, Denny found himself in a grassy field with flowers of every color popping up everywhere. It was also a beautiful sunny and temperate day. This caught him off guard because this didn’t feel at all like his new hometown of South Park where, last he saw, there was three feet of snow on the ground and looking around, he had not seen any mountains here. Visions had begun to pop up in his mind from what he last had remembered. He had been in a big maze of a place, running for his life with his friends with him. He had looked behind him and found his girlfriend was having trouble getting out of harm’s way. He went back to help her and got thrown up and forward into the air and then it all went black. He couldn’t recall anything between then and now.
Denny started walking around in this strange new place, turning his head in every direction as he walked, though with no idea where he was or how he got there. After walking for several minutes, he stopped and looked behind him to see how much ground he had covered, but everything looked the same. He had also noticed something else, he had been walking around for several minutes but he didn’t feel in the least bit tired. Something had caught his attention at that moment, a tall figure in the distance…
Kyle had been woken up at 8 in the morning for the long-anticipated visit from the doctor. He turned to look at his brother, still no better than when everything happened around midnight but no worse either. Violet was sitting as straight as her broken bones would allow and looking petrified at what was coming for her with her mouth open in a silent scream. The others had walked in at that moment, Ivy giving Kyle a kiss in greeting, Stan and Kenny, with a hug.
“Anything happened yet?”, asked Ivy, anxiously.
“Nope, not yet. I hope it’s going to be ok.”, said Kyle.
“Being in a coma sucks, you can’t react to anything. You’re just an empty shell, for the most part.”, said Kenny, shaking his head sadly.
Kyle’s parents walked into the room, looking exhausted and carrying two cups of coffee.
“Hello everyone.”, said Sheila, brightly, “How are we all feeling?”
“Oh god”, moaned Violet, “I don’t even want to think about what’s coming”. She grabbed her right leg gingerly as she spoke. “But nothing’s going to stop Denny from recovering, I swear it!”
“Try to relax”, said Sheila reassuringly, “we will all get through this.”
“For sure” said Kyle, looking at Denny again.
The doctor had arrived at last. All attention on other things was averted.
“Hello everyone, we have a lot to go over and not all the time in the world to do it.”, said the doctor, the professional manner and expressionless face was difficult to read.
“Oh thank god!” said Sheila, sounding close to tears.
“Why don’t you folks take a seat? We don’t want anymore accidents..”
Sheila and Gerald took seats on the couch next to the beds while the doctor remained standing, looking at his clipboard.
“Ok, probably what everyone here is waiting on, the news on young Denny here. From the x-rays , it would appear that he sustained three broken ribs and broken right arm. There is also a mild cerebral concussion. That must’ve been one hell of a blast but there are no burns sustained by anyone, which is great news.”
“What about the coma?”, asked Gerald.
“It seems that there was head trauma which appears to have played a role. I would like to do an EEG to see if there is any communication in the brain and naturally it would be best to set the broken bones in case he does regain consciousness to spare the multitude of pain resulting from these injuries. At this point, it is unclear if there will be any recovery from the coma and when if at all but I’m sure the nurse explained that he will be kept closely monitored in the ICU. The nurses will keep him monitored around the clock keeping the body hydrated with fluids, keeping tabs on the vitals, and doing routine blood work to make sure that things are kept in check.”
“Is there any possibility that the concussion is a factor of the coma?”, asked Sheila.
“At this point we aren’t sure. Maybe it has nothing to do with it and maybe it has everything to do with it. It’s too early to tell but we’ll do these tests and see where we should go from here.
Now, for Kyle, there has been some head trauma. I would like to have him undergo a CT scan to make sure that there’s no cerebral hemorrhages and it wouldn’t be a bad idea to check the rest of his body while we’re at it.
Miss Violet has a fractured pelvis and broken tibia. They should be ready in the OR at any time now. There appears to be a small concussion as well.
Now for Ivy, Stan, and Kenny, there was some smoke inhalation but that appears gone now. I want you all to get some rest and I will arrange for a counselor to come and talk to you since you’ve all had a lot to swallow in the 8 hours since that explosion.
I will come by later on to check on everybody.”
“Thank you doctor”, said Sheila, gratefully.
Two men in blue gowns and facemasks came into the room at that moment rolling a bed with them. Violet looked tense and the silent scream was back.
“Violet? Are you ready for us to fix those broken bones of yours?”, one of them asked kindly.
“Come on, dear” said Sheila, trying to calm her down.
Violet looked like she was going to fight them, but she took a deep breath and let them put her in the bed.
“Good luck, Violet!”, said Ivy, kindly.
There was a momentary glimpse of Violet’s frightened face then she was off.
“I wonder what it’s like to have to go through that?” said Stan, wonderingly.
“I don’t remember, I was too sick at the time to really feel any emotions.”, said Kyle.
Denny began to walk closer to the figure and as he got closer, he could’ve sworn he knew this figure from somewhere. He rubbed his eyes and when he opened them again, he still saw the same sight.
“Am I dreaming right now?”, he asked out loud.
“That is up to you to decide.”, said the figure, walking toward Denny, “That is definitely one way to put it.”
Realization finally hit Denny as he finally realized who he was talking to.
“Wait a minute, Mom?”
Christy smiled., “It took you long enough to recognize your own mom.”, she said, teasingly.
“So wait, am I dead?”, asked Denny, starting to feel worried.
“I would think not”, said Christy, “you’re still in that coma. This just a little something to keep your bored brain a chance to make sure it can still do what it’s supposed to.”
“”I’m so happy to see you again!”, said Denny, giving his mom a long-awaited hug. “So where are exactly?”
“This is a little place known as purgatory, which is like a temporary plain of existence.”, said Christy.
“But I thought you said I wasn’t dead?”, asked Denny.
“I’ve learned a lot since arriving in the afterlife. Purgatory can be used for deceased family of someone who is comatose to speak to them one last time.”
“That’s kind of odd”, said Denny, “wouldn’t everyone think they have passed on we they come here?”
“I would certainly think so”, said Christy. “It’s always the worst when it’s a child. They often get depressed and feel that heaven isn’t heaven if they haven’t got to live fulfilling lives.”
“Did you see what happened overnight?”, asked Denny.
“Yes, and I don’t think I’ve seen anything that scary before.”
‘I’m worried about Violet though”, said Denny, “this has to be taking a giant toll on her. I wish there was some way to put her at ease.”
“Unfortunately, we can’t get all that we want”, said Christy.
Violet was wheeled back into the ICU, still feeling the effects of the anesthetic, leg wrapped in a cast and the midsection heavily bandaged.
Ivy put her hands to her mouth at the sight of it all. She carefully walked over, looking concerned.
“Hey Violet, how are you feeling?”, she asked softly.
Violet turned her head slowly to look at Ivy. “My leg hurts like hell and my midsection too. That anesthetic was the weirdest f*cking thing I’ve ever felt.” Her voice was barely above a whisper.
“Well, at least it’s over now. I would think surgery isn’t an easy to go through.”, said Ivy, nodding.
“How’s Denny? Did they find anything in the tests?”
“He’s supposed to go at 2, after they take him to the OR to fix the broken bones.”
Violet’s heart monitor had started beeping. Ivy looked at it urgently.
“What wrong?”, she asked, looking scared.
The nurse had come in looking straight at the monitor.
“The blood pressure is up a little bit which is making the pulse go up.”, she explained, “she will need to be given anti-anxiety medicine. I’ll go get some Atavan and see if that helps.”
Ivy looked back at Violet, who looked uncomfortable.
“Calm down, Violet. I know this is a lot to go through but you need to stay calm.”
The nurse was back and had the medicine ready to hook into the IV line. She stood back a little and waited. The blood pressure began to fall back to normal and the heart rate was normal.
“Can I ask you a favor?”, she asked Ivy, “If these two numbers here,” she pointed to the number grouped on the monitor, “if they go above 140 on the top, and 90 on the bottom, please push the call button?”
“Ok”, said Ivy, “what does that mean if that happens?”
“It means that the blood pressure is high and we need to lower it.”, said the nurse.
“Ok, then the heart rate goes up?”
“Exactly”, said the nurse, “this usually happens when the patient is under distress resulting from worry, anger, sadness, and things like that. It’s always best to try keeping her mind off of anything that could cause this to happen.”
“Ok, I’ll keep that in mind and tell the others”, said Ivy.
“Where are the others, by the way?”, asked Violet.
“They went to have those tests done.”
“Do you think they’ll find anything?”, asked Violet
“Probably not”, said Ivy, “If there was anything wrong, they would’ve saw it last night when we were brought in.”
“That’s good”, said Violet, still looking very out of it from the anesthesia.
Kyle had come back into the room at the moment. His face lit up when he saw Violet back.
“Violet! How did everything go?”, he asked.
“Only thing I can tell is that it all hurts like hell but I assume that’s a good thing.”
“Well, if that’s a good sign then that’s great news.”, said Kyle, looking relieved.
“What about you?”, asked Ivy.
“”Well, it was easy enough. I doubt there was anything unusual because I feel totally fine.”
“That doesn’t mean anything though,”, said Violet, “my injuries were obvious but sometimes it isn’t.”
“That’s true,”, said Kyle, nodding, “things like concussions aren’t obvious. We’ll see what happens though.”
Two more men in scrubs came into the room and approached Denny’s bed.
“Ok kids, it’s time to take Denny to the OR and fix up those broken bones.”
“Oh god,”, said Violet, turning white, “This is even more scary than when I had to go down there. Denny’s in worse shape than me.”
“Now Violet, take it easy. I know you’ve been under a lot of strain in the past twelve hours but you need to calm down.”, said Kyle.
“I can’t help it”, Violet insisted, “He’s stands a greater chance of dying than me.”
“Don’t say that”, said Ivy, “I’m sure he’ll make it. Just try to sleep to keep your mind off of that.”
Kyle began to feel tense because he realized that what Violet said was true. He began pacing around the room, with his hands in his pockets. Ivy saw this and stood up to give Kyle emotional support.
“You ok there, Kyle?”
“It’s just, I’m scared that I may never see him again, much less out of this hospital.”, said Kyle, shaking his head.
“Hey, you don’t have to be ashamed of that.”, said Ivy, grabbing Kyle’s hand and squeezing it tenderly, “I’m scared too. We just have to wait it out and hope for the best.”
There was one last glimpse of Denny’s comatose face before he was wheeled out of the room.
“I thought I was doomed to go to hell after what happened the other day.”, said Denny, looking worried.
“Of course you’re not, Denny.”, said Christy, soothingly, “What you did merely meant that you have a good heart to know what is best to do in a situation like that, just like what happened last night when you saved your little friend. That can only ever qualify as something, only someone with a good heart and the daring to put others ahead of oneself, would have the willingness and guts, to do. I have never been more proud to have a son like you. It shows that the effort I put into raising a one-of-a-kind son has succeeded.”
“I do care a lot for my friends and family. I would never let something bad happen to them if there was any way to prevent it.”, said Denny.
He started to tear up, listening to his mother’s words and knowing he would never hear her voice again after this. He didn’t want her to leave him again but he didn’t want to leave his friends and family in the mortal realm behind either. It was all confusing, so much so that it frustrated him.
“I know what you’re thinking,”, said Christy, as though she read his mind. “yes, we will have to part ways again but it is my hope that when this happens, it will give you the strength to do what you must, now and for the rest of your life.”
She looked into his eyes, stared straight into those tear-streaked, bright blue eyes.
“Just remember what I said, always keep your heart open and do what’s right. Live your life for it’s own sake and not to gain some reward or avoid punishment, and the will to overcome.”
“I will always be watching over you, don’t forget that I will always love you.”
They gave each other one last big hug and then she was gone.
*End of chapter 7*
Denny had found himself in what looked like a closet. He start to walk around trying to figure out what this was for sure when he heard something coming from in front of him and suddenly was blasted by a bright light right in his face, which caused him to throw his hands in front of him to block the light. After his eyes adjusted to the light, he carefully moved forward as a hand moved toward him which scared the sh*t out of him. The hand was reaching for something Denny could not see and with a jolt of shock, realized that the hand has passed right through him.
“What the hell was going on?”, Denny asked himself.
He moved forward a bit more to see if there were any answers to what he wanted to know and realized that he was looking at a younger-looking Denny. Little Denny was busy digging through his closet, looking for something, until a familiar voice rang out.
“Denny, you’re going to be late for school!”
Denny’s heart jumped when he heard the voice . He took his hand and gave his leg a hard pinch, which hurt a lot but seemed to rule out the fact he was dreaming. He resisted the temptation to run head-first into the wall when he realized he’d probably pass right through it. He turned to see his younger self in a big hurry to get ready for school, which seemed difficult as it appeared that everything was scattered all over the room.
“sh*t, I’m gonna miss the bus!”, said little Denny, making big Denny’s hair stand up, hearing how little his voice sounded.
He finally had everything picked and hurried out the door with his older self in close tow, trying to figure out what was going on. He saw his younger-looking mother waiting with her hands on her hips and holding what was evidently a packed lunch as little Denny came rushing into the kitchen.
“Now, be good and if that Connor boy wants to start anything, just ignore him, alright?”, said Christy, looking stern.
“But I don’t want to seem like a pussy to him, mom.”, said little Denny.
“Nonsense, it just makes you smarter not to get in trouble.”, said Christy.
At the mention of Connor again, Denny was strongly reminded of Cartman, even though there wasn’t much of him to put up with, thank god. Denny was taken back to that first day of school back in South Park, where he quickly established his authority over Cartman with his friends. It seemed like so long ago.
There was a horn outside and little Denny hurried out the door, with his older self behind him, interested to see what was to happen that day but still confused as to why he was reliving a memory of older days, especially if he wasn’t dead.
The two men in scrubs had wheeled comatose Denny from the ICU with clipboard in hand,, to the elevator to head down to the second floor and the OR.
“How’s he doing, Mike? Still unconscious?”
“Yep, poor kid. It’s always so much worse when it’s a kid.”
“Still, at least he can’t feel the broken bones or he’d be screaming bloody murder.”
The elevator stopped and the doors slid open. The two assistants moved out of the elevator and turned right, heading past pre op into OR 3. They stopped the gurney next to the operating table and slid Denny onto it. They turned to see the surgeon, who was scrubbing in, and gave him a thumbs up, while they waited for the anesthesiologist so they could scrub in as well.
“Oh god, this feels like the longest few hours of my life.”, Kyle moaned, looking terrible with worry.
“How long did they say he would be in there?”. asked Violet.
“I don’t know, it’s probably going to be a while, especially if it’s three broken ribs and a broken arm,”, said Ivy.
“I just can’t get over the worry that I might not ever see him again.”, continued Kyle.
Ivy hit him on the arm and jerked her head toward Violet. Kyle obviously didn’t get the message and shrugged his shoulders.
“Kyle, can I talk to you outside for a minute?”, she asked, pulling on his jacket.
“Um ok, we’ll be right back, Violet.”, he said, looking at Violet as he spoke.
They walked outside the room and made sure they were out of earshot of Violet.
“What’s going on?”, asked Kyle, looking worried, “Oh no, you’re not leaving me are you?”
Ivy smacked him upside the head.
“Ow, what was that for?”
“That was such a bad joke that I’m actually angry with you.”, said Ivy, shaking her finger at him.
“Well, it was a legitimate question.”, said Kyle, fairly.
“Anyway, no, I’m not leaving you. I just want to tell you to make sure to be careful with Violet. The nurse warned me to be careful what we say around her. Try to avoid saying anything that would piss her off, make her upset, agitated, or anything like that. The reason being so it doesn’t jack up her blood pressure or heart rate. I said something earlier, I don’t remember what, but it caused her blood pressure to be distressed. You have to make sure the blood pressure doesn’t go above 140/90 and if it does, tell the nurse right away.”
“Ok, got it”, said Kyle, nodding.
The surgeon had gotten all scrubbed in and the anesthesiologist had prepared the anesthesia to be sure that, if Denny were to wake up from the coma, he wouldn’t wake up in the middle of the surgery. The anesthetic was injected into the iv rather than using the mask since Denny was comatose and couldn’t really breathe in the anesthetic through that.
Gown and gloves ready, sterile instruments ready to go, materials to makes the casts, the doctor had begun by making the incision along the ribcage after turning Denny over on his side. The doctor had then started looking to make sure there were no bone chips that had come loose when the ribs had been broken. The doctor’s attention had been averted to the kidneys, though the surgery had nothing to do with them. He had been told that Denny had a history of kidney disease and as the doctor had been momentarily been distracted by realizing that this was a chance few got to see this, he noticed that the outside of them looked sclerosed but then he realized the he was after repairing bones and looked back at the area of the incision. There was an area of bone chips near the bottom portion of the ribcage and called for suction to remove them. He grabbed the scope next because since it was broken ribs, he needed to be sure that there was no damage to the internal organs. Looking at the liver, pancreas, stomach, and gallbladder, he was surprised that there appeared to be no damage at all he pulled out the incision and carefully set the ribs together to the best position he could for them to have the easiest time to heal themselves and sutured the area before wrapping bandages around the midsection. He next went over to the arm and noticed that it simply needed to be popped back into place and put into a cast. The recovery from the injuries would be tough, though he thought about fixing Violet’s injuries earlier and thought that both of them could help each other. He made the finishing touches on the cast and put the arm in a sling. The operation had gone smoothly so now all that was left was to wait to see if Denny came out of the coma.
The school bus pulled in front of Barbara Bush Elementary School half an hour later. Seeing his school again was still startling to Denny since he was still trying to figure out exactly why he was back in the past. There was his old friends in his old third grade classroom. Little Denny had started dozing through his teacher’s lecture about world war two, it was all so familiar to his older self and to know what was already going to happen was even more surprising. Out at recess, he was playing kickball with his friends as he used to do everyday. Connor had been tagged out and was busy having a fit and trying to pick a fight with whoever , Denny couldn’t remember who, had tagged him out.
Everything had gotten black again and Denny had next found himself back at what had looked like the last day of third grade. Everybody was staring at the clock, much to the annoyance of the teacher.
“Hey! Pay attention you kids!”, said the teacher looking like he was getting a headache, “I know you all can’t wait for school to be over but if you keep looking at the clock, it will just slow things down. Now, who would like to share what they’re doing for summer vacation?”
“I’m going to see Las Vegas”, said little Denny, “we’re going to Circus Circus and I’ll be able to play at the midway.”
“That sounds fun.”, said the Teacher.
“Hey, wait a minute”, said Damien, “You never told me that.”
“I just found out this morning.”, said little Denny.
“Dude, how long will you be there?”, asked Cameron.
“Couple days, I think.”, said little Denny.
“Damn, that’ll be fun.”, said John.
“Ok, who’s next?, asked the Teacher.
“Denny and I are going to play laser tag this weekend.”, said Damien.
Denny had been brought back to the 3rd floor and the ICU, where everybody in room 13 was anxiously awaiting his return.
“Denny! Thank god!”, said Kyle, standing up immediately and rushing over to him. He was almost in tears from worrying whether or not things would turn out alright.
“Where are your parents?”, one of the assistants asked Kyle.
“They left to go to work but I told them I would let them know when Denny got back.”, said Kyle, not taking his eyes off Denny.
“Ok, well the doctor said that he would be back up here to check on everybody around 4, so he would like you to let your parents know that.”
“Ok, I’ll call them right now.”, said Kyle pulling out his phone and dialing his mom’s number first.
He looked over at Denny again and flinched at the cast on his brother’s right arm and the bandage around the midsection.
“Hello, Kyle?”, Sheila said, when she picked up the phone.
“Yeah mom”, Kyle started, “Denny is out of surgery and back in the room.”
“That’s great!”, said Sheila, “So what did they say?”
“They said that the doctor will be back up here around 4. He has a cast on his arm and bandages around his midsection. Whatever they had to do looks like it hurt like hell.”
“I’m sure”, said Sheila, “at least he hasn’t been awake to feel the pain or he’d be screaming.”
“Yeah, did you want me to call Dad and tell him?”, asked Kyle.
“No, I’ll do it.”, said Sheila, “You just keep an eye on Denny and make sure he’s alright.”
“I will”, said Kyle and hung up the phone.
Ivy, who had gone downstairs to get something to eat, lit up when she saw Denny was back.
“Oh my god”, said Ivy, “I feel so much better that he’s back. That must’ve hurt like a mother f*cker.”
“I’ll say”, said Kyle, unable to take his eyes off of Denny’s casts, “I can’t believe someone can sleep through that.”
“Well, he’s in a coma, remember”, Ivy reminded him.
“Oh my god, I thought we’d never get out of there.”, a voice behind Kyle moaned.
Kyle turned around and found Stan and Kenny,, back from their meeting with the counselor.
“Sup guys?” asked Ivy, looking interested, “have fun with the counselor?”
“Don’t remind me”, said Kenny, “We were over there for two hours and it dragged on forever. Be prepared for it tomorrow.”
“Oh sh*t, I forgot about that !”, said Kyle, looking downcast.
“So what were you guys doing while we were gone?”, asked Stan.
“Keeping an eye on Violet and Denny pretty much.”, said Kyle,, “They must’ve been through hell with those surgeries.”
“Huh? Wha?”, said Violet, waking up from her nap, “Oh, he’s back! I slept the whole time he was gone?”
“That’s right,” said Ivy, “I told you it would work.”
“How are you feeling, Violet?”, asked Stan.
“I’m still pretty sore.” said Violet, wincing when she moved, “I hope they’re going to give me pain killers soon.”
“What time is it, Stan?”, asked Ivy.
He looked at the clock on the wall. “It’s three, why?”
“Dude, my parents better hurry up and get here.”, said Kyle.
“The doctor’s due in here around four.”, explained Ivy, “Kyle told his parents to be here before then.”
“Hey, what about your parents?”, asked Kyle, suddenly realizing Randy and Sharon were not there.
“I doubt they even got word on what’s been going on.”, said Stan, “But I don’t want Dad coming here and humiliating me.”
“Makes sense”, said Ivy, smirking.
“My parents are too busy fighting to really notice anything else.”, said Kenny.
“I don’t give a rat’s ass about Cartman’s mom so I’m not worried about that.”, said Ivy.
“What about you, Violet?”, asked Kyle.
“My parents went out of town to pick up stuff from our old house to bring here, it doesn’t matter to me much.”
Still an hour left, all that could be done was wait.
The scene had dissolved again. This time when things cleared up, what Denny would see would’ve made him cry out, if his voice could be heard.
He was sitting on what looked like a hospital bed and was looking at a petrified, younger looking Denny. It was another flashback and the part that confused Denny was why he would be seeing these things when he was not dead.
Little Denny had has face hidden behind a teddy bear and had his eyes looking straight ahead at a pair of double door that big Denny assumed could only be an OR. The doctor had come out and was talking to Christy about something, shooting side glances at Denny as he did so. Moments later, pulled out a couple of tubes that looked like chapstick. Looking at Denny, he asked “Well Denny, would you like cherry, orange, or strawberry?”
Denny shot a nervous glance at his mom and pointed to the cherry kind, not knowing what was going on. The doctor pulled out an anesthetic mask and smeared it with the chapstick, and little Denny, now knowing what was going to happen began to scream. It was a hard sight to watch. His older alias understood what this poor kid was going through and seeing him so scared made big Denny want to reach out and comfort him, if only there was a way of doing so. Christy obviously thought along the same lines, and had no success so the doctor had no choice but to bring a screaming little Denny through the double doors, leaving Christy looking upset.
Denny began to feel nervous as he did not know what he was about to see. This was obviously going to involve some kind of surgery, though what kind he did not know. He began to study his former self to determine what age he appeared to be, and maybe what kind of surgery his former self was in for. It had to be before his mom was so close to passing away, yet he barely looked younger than he was now. He observed his former self by looking at the eyes. His lazy eye freaked him out a bit, looking at it from an outside angle but he forced himself to look more closer at it. The muscle looked turned slightly compared to the other eye. The eyes began to droop from the anesthetic as the nervousness on his former self’s face began to give away to drowsiness.
The doctor began by holding the eyelids open and taping them to keep them this way, freaking Denny out again. But before he could watch this gruesome sight, the scene has dissolved again.
Sheila and Gerald had arrived back at the hospital at about 3:30 and made their way along the familiar path to the ICU, hoping for good news from the doctor. After taking the elevator to the 3rd floor and finding room 13, they were greeted by the kids as usual.
“Hello, everybody.”, said Sheila enthusiastically. She looked at the grim sight of Denny’s comatose state, now with the cast and bandages but felt better that at least this could be considered as the start of the recovery process.
“How was the CT scan?”, Gerald asked Kyle.
“Well, if there is anything wrong, that will find it.”, said Kyle, “I doubt it though.”
“That’s good”, said Sheila, “What about the rest of you?”
“Well, Violet had surgery on her pelvis and leg, that seems to be fine.”
“How are they feeling?”, Sheila asked Violet, concerned.
“Pretty sore”, said Violet, “hopefully they give me painkillers soon.”
“They should, surgery isn’t a laughing matter”, said Gerald, he then looked at Kyle, “You said the doctor would be in at 4?”
“Right”, said Kyle, “I hope he has news about Denny.”
“I’m sure we all do” said Gerald.
The first thing on Denny’s mind was figuring out where he ended up next. It seemed quiet and undisturbed. Denny looked around and saw that he appeared to be back at a former house within his former hometown. It also seemed that he was alone within it and it confused him as to what memory he was visiting this time. A noise coming from up front made him jump about a foot in the air as he looked for a place to hide, forgetting that he couldn’t be seen.
“sh*t, what a long day.”, said a voice that Denny had recognized as one he used to have.
Denny had moved toward where his former self was as his former self threw backpack and sweatshirt on to the couch as he walked to the back of the house, through his mom’s room. Denny’s heart gave a jolt when he saw his old dogs run in through living room as little Denny walked back to the kitchen. He grabbed the phone and dialed a number, while waiting for someone to answer.
“Hey Mom, I’m home. It was a long day. Yeah, two tests and a shitload of homework. Ugh, I’m not looking forward to it. She did? Again? Ok, I’ll see you when you get home.”
He hung up the phone and went to feed the dogs. Denny had forgot how those dogs had been spoiled too much. His former self was done with the food and after putting water in the dish, set it back down, watching as the dogs ate.
“Dammit, I hate homework.”, he said, disgusted, as he reluctantly got his binder out of his backpack, along with his books..
“Better to get this sh*t done first.”, he said to nobody in particular, grabbing math homework and snorting when he saw all there was to do. “I shouldn’t have so many responsibilities, I’m 7 for Christ’s sake!”.
About half an hour later he put his books back and threw the backpack in his room. Mumbling about he much he hated school. At that moment, the phone rang. He got up and went to see who was calling. At once, his face lit up and picked up the phone excitedly.
“Hey dude! Oh my god, that homework was a pain. Oh yeah, I hated that part. He, what? Dude, that’s f*cked up! Yeah, I saw that. I wanted to kick his ass for that. Alright, I’ll be over when my mom gets home. Later.”
Little Denny clicked on the tv and flipped through the channels, looking bored. He settled on watching stuff that his future self hadn’t watched in a long time, resulting in big Denny doing a *nosebridgepinch*.
“Jesus Christ, I watched this sh*t when I was that age?” he thought.
Christy had arrived home about a half hour later and shocked big Denny with how young she looked, even though little Denny seemed not so young. He had wondered how close things were to the present but this was probably around third grade.. No sooner had he thought this that the scene had dissolved once again.
Back in the present and at the hospital in South Park, everyone was watching the news while waiting for the doctor. They all had fingernails biting into their palms as there seemed to be more developments in the explosion.
“If you’re just tuning in, still more developments in the breaking news story we brought you around 1 this morning. Firefighters have been digging inside the rubble from what used to be the town square and trying to piece this case together. It seems that 7 children were being held against their will, with one confirmed dead. What exactly happened here is still under intense investigation and yet to be determined. We will bring any developments as we get them.”
“Do you guys think we’ll be interviewed about what happened?”, Kyle asked out loud.
“Well, we’re the only ones who know exactly what happened.”. said Ivy, “I would think so.”
“Ugh, I can’t bear to recite that sh*t again.”, said Violet, “It was hard enough to listen to hear you giving your parents the detail last night, Kyle.”
“Maybe there’s a chance they won’t.”, said Ivy, “I mean, at least while we’re here anyway. I can imagine the doctors and the rest of the staff won’t want us to be stressed out so they might forbid it from happening.”
Kyle looked at the clock impatiently. It was about five minutes to four. The wait was becoming anxious but at the same time, he was afraid of anymore bad news. They all had been to hell and back in the past 15 hours but it would set his mind at ease if there was good news from the doctor.
At last, the doctor had arrived. As everyone was already seated, there was no need to ask anyone to sit down. The doctor had taken his clipboard out and was going over the notes.
“So, how are we all feeling?”, he asked, merrily.
Everyone chorused back as one.
“Hmm, the scene looks much better than what we saw this morning.”, said the doctor, “with our operations on Denny and Violet here, we’ve started the process of healing for them. I must warn you though, the recovery will be tough. We will need to keep them in wheelchairs for a few weeks as the bones heal, to avoid any complications. Denny, as he has suffered broken ribs, is going to have to be very careful as broken ribs are the potential for puncturing lungs, etc. The ribs act as a protective barrier for these organs but since they are broken, the organs are vulnerable.”
“How is the coma?”, asked Gerald.
“When we ran the EEG, there was signs of responsiveness within the brain. I don’t want to give your hopes up, but from that angle it looks as if the brain is recovering, so this is very good news. We still need to keep him monitored and see what happens. There seems a better chance of recovery at this point, than this morning.”
“Oh my god, this is fantastic!”, said Sheila, beginning to tear up.
“Now remember, even if there is recovery, he’s not out of the woods yet. He will have a bit of short-term memory loss and vitals will need to have close monitoring, there will be a bit of disorientation but this will only be temporary. The best thing to do right now is to keep all our fingers crossed. Jesus christ, after what happened this morning this is amazing!”
“Ok, now what about Violet?”, asked Ivy, trying to keep her mind from dwelling completely on Denny and ignoring Violet.
“As I said, recovery is going to be tough. Having a fractured pelvis will mean intense physical therapy. The pelvis is a key component in the ability to walk, and Violet having fractured hers will basically mean that she will have to learn to walk again. Assuming Denny does wake up, at this point, there is about a 50/50 chance of this, the two of them can help each other out.”
“Damn, I’m so glad he’s my man now.”, said Violet, looking dreamy.
“Little Kyle here, we got the results of the CT back and everything looks clean. Along with the others, I would like him to talk with the counselor to help him have the ability to move past these events that have happened and then they should be free to go in two days.”
“Any questions?”, he asked.
“What are the signs of Denny waking up?” asked Gerald.
“Well, as you can see,”, said the doctor, pointing at the monitor, “the pulse is going slow right now, but when it seems he will wake up, it will increase a little bit. The monitor will beep faster and there will be a slight increase on the blood pressure. I would like you to notify the nurse right away if any of this seems to be happening.”
“How long will the physical therapy last?", asked Violet.
“It’s going to last for quite a while. It will be painful and grueling but, again with the severity of the injuries, it has to be done this way.”
“Don’t forget what I said, keeping your fingers crossed that fate favors everyone. I will come back a little later to check on you all.”
As the doctor exited the room , the occupants in room 13 erupted in cheers at the good news.
“Oh my god”, said Sheila again, “what a wonderful thing to happen in all this worry!”
“Now honey,”, said Gerald, though he couldn’t suppress a grin himself, “you heard what the doctor said, don’t get your hopes up.”
“Well, I certainly won’t give up hope either.”, she insisted.
“I won’t either.”, said Violet, “I still can’t help feeling responsible for all this.”
The revered silence that followed was all of anticipation.
When the dust had cleared next, Denny’s first thought was that he should’ve seen it coming. He had arrived at the scene that occurred just 4 days ago. There was an uncertainty in the air and things seemed in an advanced state of sadness. Denny’s first instinct was to see his mom again, but at the same time, he remembered how grim things had looked before he left.
He heard an outcry coming from the backside of the hallway. Denny walked to the back where he found his former self in a definite state of sadness. It seemed as though little Denny had just gotten the news of Christy’s fate and his own. It was a hard thing to witness, and even more so because he knew what was to happen.
Little Denny was too busy crying his eyes out to pay attention to much else, though his mom had looked as if she was taking it all in stride. Big Denny had totally forgotten how sick Christy had looked, especially because of the memories that were revisited, which showed her in the pre-terminal illness started, that would eventually come to be .
“So hold on, why can’t we find dad and see if I can live with him?!” little Denny asked, desperately.
“Because Denny, I don’t even know if he’s in the same place that he was when I was with him.”, said Christy, looking upset, though maybe not because of knowing her fate, “it’s better for a place like an orphanage to take you in, so at least I know you’ll get taken good care of.”
“But orphanages suck!”, insisted Denny, “I want to at least know I have a dad!”
“Denny, please don’t make this harder than it already is for me.”, said Christy, looking as though it was taking her every ounce of resistance she had. “I know it’s hard to swallow all of this, but I wouldn’t do this if I didn’t feel it’s all for the best.”
This scene was even harder to see from the sidelines. Big Denny was starting to feel distraught again remembering all that had gone on in the past 96 hours and remembering his mother’s words back in purgatory.
“Don’t you think that dad would’ve wanted to meet me eventually, though?“, Little Denny insisted again.
“Please Denny, this is not helping things. I would prefer things would go the way you want but that seems unlikely to happen. Like I said, I’m not even sure he still lives in South Park or not. It’s been 10 years since I saw him. Let’s just try to grow accustomed to what is going to happen. Let’s just sleep on it.”
Little Denny looked pissed and slammed his door followed by what sounded like the door being locked. Christy sighed sadly and went toward the direction of her bedroom, where she finally couldn’t take it anymore. Sitting on her bed, she finally broke down, making big Denny feel awful about doing that to his mom.
About two hours later, the big moment had arrived. Little Denny had snuck out of his room to find a dark and quiet house. There was one main objective on his mind, which was the junk drawer in the kitchen. He quickly found his mom’s address book and riffled through it, looking for an address within South Park, CO. The first South park address he found was one for a Liam Cartman. The name seemed unusual but since it was in South Park, little Denny figured if this wasn’t his father, this person might have connections to whoever his father might be. His future self had been watching his former self considering this with a look of determination on his face, knowing what it was to make a decision like this, his future self was prepared for the effect on his former self’s mentality but there again was the consideration of what was to come.
Little Denny seemed to finally make up his mind so he had walked back to his bedroom, quietly as possible and grabbed his backpack to fill with clothes and other possessions that could fit into it. He then took a piece of paper and scribbled a note to his mom, a little illegible than it would usually have been, but because he was wound up,
As much as I hate myself for doing this, I have set out for South Park on my own. I found an address listed there and I think if it’s not dad, it will be someone who has connections to him. I’m sure you understand what is going through my head right now but please try to understand.
I will never forget you and I hope you’ll never forget me.
Little Denny had placed this letter on the kitchen table, grabbed his backpack, and quietly as possible, went out the front door. At the end of the driveway, he turned around and had one last fleeting glimpse of the house before he forced himself to turn around and walk away.
Big Denny desperately tried to rationalize what was going on but there again was the drag of being in a memory. He had wondered, once again, what was symbolic about revisiting these points in life and made a mental note, when he was back in his comatose body, to seek spiritual guidance for this answer. As sudden as this obsession came to mind, the scene dissolved once again and next he knew, he was back at the hospital in South Park, looking at a familiar head of long blue hair.
Was he still unconscious? Was this merely his soul looking at the sight that was his girlfriend? He assumed so as everybody was oblivious to noticing him back in his body. He could hear the steady beeping of the heart monitor and the hum of the respirator. There was a presence of several foreign objects on him including an IV inside of his right arm, a blood pressure cuff on his left arm, he was intubated , and he had a nasal canula under his nose. He tried uncovering memories of what had happened that would explain how he got in this state but could not. He was obviously in the ICU, which would explain why he was intubated.
The only thing left to do now was to will himself out of this state, which undoubtfully would take every ounce of strength he had to do so. He felt that whatever the memories from older days had given him strength and he held on to those as he began to push himself to wake up. He could hear the heart monitor beeping a little more rapidly, which was obviously a good sign. He remembered the stuff his mom had said when he saw her in purgatory and this made the effort even stronger. Finally, he thought about his friends and how much it meant to him to have friends like those.
There was no doubt now that he had it in him to go all the way. He felt his eyes open up looking into Violet’s face as she watched the heart monitor with desperation on her face.
“Hey there good looking, how are you doing?”, he said in a weak voice, which made her almost fall out of the bed in shock.
*End of chapter 8*
Fortunately, Violet was able to catch herself before landing herself additional injuries. Everyone was staring, open-mouthed at what was just witnessed ,having not noticed what Violet had.
“What was that all about?", asked Kyle, looking surprised.
Violet was totally speechless and could only point toward Denny, with wide eyes. Kyle took a look in that direction and gasped loudly with the same facial expression.
“Uh, will somebody call the nurse in here?”, he asked.
“What’s wrong?”, asked Ivy, looking worried.
“Because I just saw what Violet saw. Denny just woke up.”
Stan, who had been facing the other way, watching tv, had turned his head so fast that his neck popped. Rubbing it, he immediately jumped out of the seat to see for himself.
“No f*cking way…!”, he managed to say. He went to the call button for the nurse and pummeled it.
The nurse immediately dashed into the room, looking worried. Stan merely pointed in Denny’s direction. The nurse dropped the clipboard she was carrying with a clatter and immediately went over to check the heart monitor.
“Vitals look steady. Blood pressure normal. Oh my god, I can’t believe what I’m seeing. I just have to page the doctor. He won’t believe this.”, she said, running out of the room.
“Denny! Oh my god! I’m so happy you’re awake!”, said Sheila, breaking down immediately.
Everybody else was still gazing open-mouthed at what they were seeing, in absolute shock.
Denny couldn’t really talk very well since he was intubated but understood what their reaction was all about. The doctor had come in at that moment looked amazed and as the nurse had, checked the vitals.
“Well, this has got to be one of the most amazing sights I’ve ever witnessed. How are you feeling, Denny?”
Denny looked about to speak but then realized he still had to get the tube out of his throat, so he merely pointed to it.
“Oh right, sorry about that. Nurse, will you extubate him for me?”
“Right away, doctor. Now Denny, what I need you to do is take a deep breath and blow out as hard as you can until the tube is out, ok?
Denny gave a thumbs up to indicate that he understood.
“One, two, three, now blow.”
Denny blew out hard as the tube was pulled. Kyle looked at this sight wide-eyed as at last, it was out, resulting in Denny coughing and wheezing for a minute. Finally, he began breathing normally.
“Finally, I can breathe again.”, said Denny, still in a weak voice.
“Denny, you’re in the hospital. You’ve been in a coma for the last 18 hours. Do you have any recollection of what happened at the time you were last conscious?”
“I remember we were in the library, running out before the explosion. Violet had… and then it happened.” Denny looked somber.
“It’s ok, Denny. Just take your time.”, said the doctor.
“Is there anybody that maybe I could talk to? Because I saw things while I was knocked out.”
“Really?”, said the doctor, “Like what kind of things?”
“First, I saw my mom in purgatory.”, said Denny, “We talked a little bit. I also saw memories from childhood. I don’t understand what any of it might’ve symbolized.”
“Very interesting.”, said the doctor, looking impressed, “I’ve never heard of things like that happening before but it would certainly be something to look into.”
“So, wait a minute”, said Kyle, “When Ike was seeing dead celebrities, that doctor had told us that purgatory was where dead people went when they couldn’t accept that they had died..”
“That’s true”, said Stan, “boy, was that ever weird.”
“So how could Denny have seen his mom in purgatory unless she couldn’t accept that she had died?”, asked Violet.
“She had told me that, yes, that’s normally what purgatory was for, but she also said that purgatory could also be for family members who were deceased to connect with family of theirs who were comatose, for the purpose of speaking to them just one more time.”, said Denny.
“Wow”, said Ivy wonderingly, “that’s pretty amazing. I had heard of purgatory too, but I didn’t really know what it was.”
“So, what did she have to say? That is, if you’re comfortable talking about it.”, said Gerald.
“I expressed concern after what happened the other day. I thought I was doomed for hell after what had happened but she said that I did a good thing and that it could hardly turn out as I feared it would.”, said Denny.
“So, let’s get down to what has happened in the time that you were in a coma and then I would like you to take it easy for the rest of the night.”, said the doctor.
He cleared his throat and pulled Denny’s chart in front of him.
“We were told by investigators that the explosion happened at about 12:30 this morning and the entire town square was destroyed. It seems to be that it was a chain reaction and that two bodies were recovered since then and that they were identified as Eric Cartman (everyone looked uncomfortable at this), and John Desmond. According to what your friends have told us, Desmond had taken all of you hostage in the library after you all had run into the library and he had shot and killed the librarian. Does that make any sense?”
“Yeah”, said Denny, looking distressed, “I remember it all in horrible detail, the whole thing.”
“Well, it seems that you were knocked unconscious at the time the explosion happened. You and Violet were knocked into the air and back about 20 feet from the force of the explosion. Had you not rescued her, she would not have lived through the ordeal.”
Violet sniffed and Denny had put a comforting arm around her.
“Be careful.”, the doctor warned, “You both sustained serious injuries and are both very delicate right now.”
“What kind of injuries were they?”, asked Denny.
“Like I said, the force of the blast wasn’t pretty. You suffered 3 broken ribs, broken arm, and a mild cerebral concussion. The broken ribs will take a few weeks to heal and though broken ribs normally heal themselves, there is a big risk of the ribs puncturing internal organs, which they normally protect. We set them away from the most vulnerable position and wrapped the midsection in bandages to protect everything.”
Denny looked down and found the bandages and cast around his torso. The sight made the full impact of what happened even more gruesome. He looked back at the doctor, who was wearing a concerned expression. Violet saw this too and put an arm around his shoulders.
“I know this is a lot to take in, especially for someone who has been through so much already but the important thing to remember is that you’ve lived to tell the tale and you have very good friends that will help to make it all the more easier for you.”
“You got that right.”, said Kyle.
“It’s just, I don’t know, something like that happens and I’m deaf to the world for that long, and I came back and I’m faced with it all. It’s just something I never thought would happen to me.”
“Try to calm yourself down.”, said the doctor, “the good news once again, is that you were able to live through it. There’s still a long road ahead. You and Violet will be able to help each other and reach your goals.”
“But what happened to her?, asked Denny.
“Like I said, if it wasn’t for you, you wouldn’t be seeing her right now. That was an amazing show of bravery on your part. While she lived through the blast, she sustained a fractured pelvis and broken leg. It’s a miracle that no burns were sustained. The burn unit was getting ready for you since they assumed they would be having you both as visitors. The pelvis being fractured will pretty much mean having to learn to walk again.”
“Are we getting wheelchairs?”, asked Denny.
“Yes, and the need will last a while. The road ahead will be tough but you’ll all get through it.”
“I will give social services a call in the morning and I would think that this is the biggest miracle in this hospital’s history. Take good care of yourself.”
“Hey doctor, has my parents made it back here yet? My mom is supposed to be starting over here any day now.”, said Violet.
“Actually, she’s starting work tomorrow. I caught that earlier today but I will make sure she knows you’re here.”
“I will see you all in the morning.”, said the doctor.
“Thank you!”, said Denny.
“Remember, take it easy.”
The doctor walked out. Everybody was still in an advanced state of shock at what had happened in the past half hour. Violet noticed she still had Denny in a tight embrace but Denny didn’t seem to care and instead closed his eyes, still thinking about everything that had happened not even 24 hours ago.
“You ok there, Denny?”, asked Kyle worriedly.
“Just a little depressed, I guess.”, said Denny, “one memory I saw for sure, I wish I could take back.”
“Well, by the looks of it, whatever it was would be enough to depress anybody”, said Sheila.
“Look everybody,”, said Violet, taking charge of things and surprising everyone, “Let’s leave Denny alone on that subject until he’s ready to talk about it.”
“Thanks, Violet.”, said Denny, an eyebrow raised.
“That’s right!”, she said again, then started breaking down slowly.
“Violet! What’s wrong?”, asked Denny, shocked.
“I-It’s just… the past 24 hours have been hell and back again. It’s been an emotional roller coaster ride. Every time I close my eyes, I can see it happening over and over again.”
She looked like she had been holding this all in for hours.
“We’re just kids, for Christ’s sake! It’s hard enough having moved to a totally different place, even though it’s probably the best thing that’s ever happened to me.”
“Just calm yourself down.”, said Ivy soothingly, “I know what it feels like to be in a whole new place. The new transition and all that but we’re all better off together here, than where we were before and alone.”
Denny had pulled Violet into as tight of a hug as he could while being wary of the broken arm and ribs. She desperately clung onto him, and he could feel the powerful ache of emotion that she was feeling. Slowly, she began to get a grip on herself.
“I’m so sorry you all had to see that.”, she said, looking embarrassed beneath the hug she and Denny were still in.
“Nonsense,”, said Ivy, “We all need to cry every now and again. It’s just hit you harder because you were more involved in what we were in.”
“So what happens now?”, asked Stan, looking anxious.
“Dude, are we going to get in trouble for not going to school?”, asked Kenny.
“Of course not”, said Sheila, “They wouldn’t do that. If they do that and we aren’t here, tell them to call me and I’ll straighten it all out.”
“Are you feeling alright now, Denny?”, asked Gerald.
“I still feel kind of weak and my throat is sore from that intubation tube.”, said Denny, “some of those memories weren’t easy to see again, especially the last one.”
“If you’re not comfortable telling us, don’t worry about it.”, said Kyle.
“That’s the thing though,”, said Denny, “It’s gotten to be an obsession since I came out of the coma. I assume there must be some kind of symbolism connected with it, like it’s some kind of sign.”
“I would say to take notes about your dreams since different details mean different things.”, said Ivy helpfully.
“Wow, this will be interesting.”, said Denny
“Just don’t go looking for Jon Edward, he’s the biggest douche in the universe.”, said Kyle.
“Kyle! Watch your language!”, said Sheila.
“What? It’s true. He even got an award so that’s his official title.”
“Well, still.”, said Sheila, even though this revelation shut her up.
“Doesn’t he just deal with talking to dead people?”, asked Denny.
“Nah, he just convinces people he does.”, said Stan, “besides that isn’t what you need to get off your chest, is it?”
“Well, just what the whole purgatory thing was about but not wanting to know what she wants me to do in life.”, said Denny, “I already know that part.”
“What’s it like with purgatory and all that?”, asked Violet, “That is, if you feel ok talking about it?”
“Well, it seems like a pretty peaceful place.”, said Denny, “Pretty warm weather, flowers of every color imaginable, grass. I remember I had run for a short time but I didn’t feel tired once.. That place looked nothing like South Park, no mountains anywhere. I saw my mom after several minutes, pretty much, she just gave me words of comfort. That’s about the long and short of it.”
“Interesting”, said Ivy, “I imagine it wasn’t an easy experience to go through.”
“Actually, it gave me closure and helped me realize that it’s time to move on.”, said Denny.
“That’s good to hear!”, said Sheila, looking happy.
“I wonder how different the meanings of the details in these dreams will be?”, asked Denny wonderingly.
“I can write them down for you if you’d like?” asked Ivy, sweetly.
“Well, that would be cool if it isn‘t too much trouble.”, said Denny.
“Let me just find a paper and pencil.”
“Here’s some”, said Kyle, handing them over
“Ok, so let’s start with the first one. Now you said that it involved seeing your mom in purgatory?”
“Yeah”, said Denny, “I think we would be better off with “deceased relative”.”
“Good idea”, said Ivy, writing it down, “Now, what about any emotions you were feeling at the time like regret, sadness, or anything like that?”
“Well, yes, both of those.”, said Denny, I’d imagine mother would be a key word here too.”
“Ok, so what was the next one about?, asked Ivy.
“Well, it first started as me being in a closet and when it opened, I saw myself when I was a third grader.”, said Denny, “My former self was in a hurry getting ready for school but the only problem was that things were scattered everywhere. I was beginning to get frustrated and was cursing under my breath. Then I get into the kitchen and my mom was telling me not to let the Cartman of my old school get to me.”
“Interesting”, said Ivy, “So, key words here would be lateness, school, bully, and closet. Anything else I should write down?”
“How about childhood?”, put in Violet, helpfully.
“Good catch”, said Denny, beaming at her.
“Ok, got it.”, said Ivy, “so where are we now?”
“There was one that took place on what looked like the last day of third grade.”, said Denny, “We were in the classroom talking about plans for the summer pretty much.”
“Ok, so I think “friends” would go here and “vacation“, so what was next?
“The next memory was hard to watch. It was of me when I was maybe seven or so about to go into surgery.”, said Denny, as everybody in the room made a sound like the air got knocked out of them, “The hardest thing about it was watching my seven year old self absolutely scared to death because of what was coming. I was screaming at the top of my lungs then the doctor pulled out stuff that looked like chap-stick tubes. He asked me to pick one, probably to make me think he had candy. So when I had done so, he pulled out an anesthetic mask and rubbed the chap-stick on the mask. I started screaming again, so they had no choice but to take me to the OR like that. They started up the anesthetic and the screaming started to stop and I looked like I was being knocked out by an invisible hammer.”
“Did you see what kind of surgery it was?”, asked Kyle, looking apprehensive.
“I actually saw them getting ready for it. They held open my eyelid and taped it. I’m betting it was eye surgery. I’m glad the memory stopped before they cut into my eyeball. That would’ve given me nightmares.”. Denny looked freaked out.
“So , there would definitely be fear associated here.”, said Ivy, writing it down , “Hmm, anesthetic could be used, surgery, eyes, and hospital. Should I write anything else?”
“I think that would cover it.”, said Kenny, who had not said a word in a while, “Keep it going, Denny.”
“Ok, this memory started as me being in my old bedroom just as my former self had got home from school”, said Denny, reciting everything that happened as it came to mind, “I had just got home and was mumbling about hating homework. I had called my mom to let her know I was home and sat down to do the homework. Then my bff at the time had called me and we talked for a couple minutes and my mom came home afterward.”
“Ok, so homework is the only new word here.”, said Ivy, “Ok continue.”
“Then came the last memory and the most haunting thing ever. This was…” Denny had to stop for a minute because he seemed to be fighting a battle with an invisible foe.
“This last memory was the night that I left home. In the beginning, I was arguing with my mom. It seemed to be that she had just dropped the news about me going to the orphanage. I was pissed about it, naturally and protesting about why I couldn’t just go stay with my dad and her answer was that she hadn’t seen him in 10 years so there was no clarification on whether he still lived in the same place.”
Sheila glared at Gerald at this revelation which caused him to go red with embarrassment.
“She was trying to tell me that there was no other alternative, that it was for the best. I finally got so pissed that I slammed my door and locked it. In my translucent dream state, I saw my mom stand there for a minute then went to her room and finally broke down.”
Denny took a deep breath and bowed his head down. It looked like he was struggling to keep himself calm. He took another breath and continued with his head still bowed.
“It was like two hours later when I came out of my room again. I went straight to her address book and searched for a South Park address. That’s where I found Cartman’s mom’s address. I wrote a note to my mom, telling her where I’d gone and it looked for a moment once I got outside that I was going to be held by the desire to stay with her as long as she was going to be alive but… I left after all.”
There was a hard-pressed silence that followed Denny’s story. Slowly but surely, he finally let it come. The mixture of guilt and emotion would not be stopped no matter how much he didn’t want to be seen experiencing it.
Kyle walked very carefully to his brother’s side and gave him an appreciated hug between brothers. It had taken a lot of guts to experience his biggest regret and the price he paid for doing it. Slowly, everyone had come together, held by the bond of having already been through so much together.
The nurse had walked in the room at the moment to check on things and was met by the sight of everybody embraced together, which she had not expected.
“Oh, I’m sorry if I’m interfering in anything, I was just checking in and seeing if all is well.”
“Yes, it’s just been an emotional night.”, said Sheila.
“Ok, if you need anything, don’t hesitate to ask.”
After what seemed like an eternity, they all broke apart, Kyle having been the last one, and since Violet and Denny were sharing a bed and hand in hand, they stayed put.
“I feel this last memory and the stuff in purgatory are the most important.”, said Denny, having finally calmed down enough to finish the task at hand.
“It would probably be most important to cover everything in here. Anger would be a keyword here and guilt and regret too.”, said Ivy, writing it all down.
“Ok dude, you only came out of the coma like an hour ago, don’t you think you should take a break?”, asked Kyle, who would not forget how much strain his brother felt at his most darkest hour, and after he was in a coma for 18 hours.
“I’m scared if he goes to sleep, he may not wake up.”, said Violet, looking upset.
“It would be crazy not to have that fear..”, said Stan, “but with all things considered, he’s the most amazing person I’ve ever known.”
“Ok, but if you go to sleep, Denny, you hold my hand and don’t let go so I know you’re still with us.”, Violet said, not taking her eye off him.
“Ok, ok. Dude, is it dinnertime yet? I haven’t eaten anything in like, a day!”,
“Of course, I totally forgot about that!”, said Sheila, suddenly on her feet, “I’ll have the nurse give us the menu so we can get something to eat.”
The food had arrived an hour later. Everyone dug in eagerly and as they ate their fill, the nurse had come in to check on everyone again.
“How have you been feeling, Denny?”, she asked.
“Well, much better since I have food in my stomach.”, said Denny, nodding.
“That’s great! Ok now, the doctor’s instructions are to make sure anything you’re going to eat or drink needs to be consumed before midnight. After this time, you will be given IV fluids. He’s also prescribed medication for keeping things in check, including medications we were told you take. There’s also morphine for pain associated with the injuries. We’ve double-checked to make sure nothing has a drug interaction with anything else, so you should be set. Anything feels unusual or out of the ordinary, even if you’re not sure, let us know right away. Do you have any questions?”
“Is there any new conditions that have popped up since I first got here?
“Not that we know of. We’ll be doing blood work periodically to monitor CBCs,, lipid panels, things like that and if anything does seem out of the ordinary, we’ll let you know. Anything else?”
“Not that I can think of but if I think of more I will let you know.”
“Alrighty then! Just kick back and make yourself at home. Anything you need just use the call button.”
She walked back to the nurse’s station and Denny sat back and right away felt relaxed. He had morphine before and was familiar with the rush it caused when it was first given. Violet moved closer to him, once again, being very careful of her’s and Denny’s injuries.
Everybody was beginning to feel relaxed and as promised, Denny had a snug grip on Violet’s hand, to reassure her that he wasn’t going anywhere.
*End of Chapter 9*
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