Wicket

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February 6th, 2023




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Status: Single
Age: 18
Country: United States

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01/27/2023 01:33 PM 

Return of Evil post 3

Return of Evil
 
Wicket /1706817
Dustin was so happy to see Suzie after all this time. They spent a bit catching up when she showed signs of being tired. Dustin insisted that she stay here. He gave her the spare keys to the house and left her be for a bit. He reluctantly said his goodbyes for now, but decided to go check out the lay of the land in Hawkins. He'd not been home in over ten years, so he had to see what sort of structural changes had been made to the place he grew up.

So many things were different as far as he could tell. Even the smallest detail had not gone unnoticed by the young man who had been a young boy on these streets. Dustin had various memories assault his conscious mind as he made his way through Hawkins. He could nearly imagine himself a chubby kid again with his favorite hat smashed down over his curls pedaling his bicycle as fast as he could. He sat at a light taking in the nostalgia. His radio started playing Boot Scootin' Boogie as he waited for the light to change.

He was singing along with a bit of a hum at first. After the light changed he started singing louder and tapping on the steering wheel just obsessing over the country music rise of the 1990s. The tune was a catchy one. Dustin was getting into it a little too much for his own good. He made the hand over hand turn that took him on the road that many used to come back into town. He recalled that the Sheriff's Office was close by. That would be a great place to start to find his old friends, many of whom he'd not seen in 10 years.

Oh, heel toe dosey doe come on baby let's go boot scootin'. Yeah, Cadillac, Black Jack baby meet me outback we're gonna boogie Dustin was singing along rather loudly now being a bit too careless with his driving. He slammed on his brakes a bit rapidly making his wheels squeal. As he plopped back down, coming back to his senses, he turned the music down. He saw a Camaro being pulled over by a police officer. Getting closer he realizes that it was Max who had pulled over Billy. It was the ultimate irony.

Another car was coming that passed Max and Billy by as she pulled him over. Dustin caught a glimpse of who it was. His face went blank. "MIKE!" He shouted in the car. Even though he shouted he knew Mike couldn't hear him. Instead of continuing his trip, Dustin parked his car on the other side of the road.

He stepped out slowly making sure the car was off and the doors were shut. He didn't want to impede Max from doing her job of course. He stood on the road itself leaning against his car. His arms were crossed over one another. Max and Billy would acknowledge him soon enough. Maybe Mike would have realized that Dustin was back and possibly come back. He had not heard any details about the cheerleader's murder. He was waiting so that Max or someone would tell him what was happening in town. There had to be a reason why he felt this way being back home.

As he waited, he had to smile at the poetic justice of Billy getting pulled over for speeding. The mental images from the past of him dodging Billy nearly running over him came back to his memory. Dustin couldn't help but gloat just a tad bit. Karma was certainly a bitch.
 
"Never Change Dustin Henderson. Promise Me."
credit: james kriet

01/23/2023 04:53 PM 

Happy New Year 1987

Happy New Year 1987
 
Wicket /1706817
Dustin Henderson was getting everything ready for the big night. The old year of 1986 was about to go the way of the dinosaur. It was none too soon either. This had been one of the worst years ever. He was trying to cling to the idea that a new year meant a new hope for the future. That's what led to tonight.

So much had happened in Hawkins recently. He was a freshman in Hawkins High now. Dustin was actually fond of The Hellfire Club. He and Mike both found others that liked D&D as much as they did. Still when the murders started and the bottom fell out, Dustin was ready to put it behind him. Getting close to others meant that when you lost them, it hurt more. He could see that in his mother's eyes. She was thinking about his father again.

This year, his mother was volunteering at the Community Center leaving Dustin alone. It was fine by him. He promised he'd not have a repeat of Mother's Day and the minor kitchen fire he'd caused. Who knew making pancakes would be such a hassle?

With VHS in hand, Dustin was finally ready. He laid the cassette aside on the coffee table and went into the kitchen for the microwave popcorn. Microwave popcorn was simple enough. He'd done it plenty of times before. He started that popping and moved toward the refrigerator. His mom had bought him some special sized bottles of Mountain Dew. They were glass with Styrofoam covering the bottom half. He grabbed one of those bottles and returned to the microwave. By that time the popcorn was ready.

The sad part about this new year's eve was that Dustin was alone. All his friends were doing their own thing. A part of him missed his friends, but he was okay. He could do this. Even Suzie was doing things with her family in Utah and couldn't talk to him on the radio. He sighed heavily. It wasn't like it was when they were younger and in elementary school. That was another lifetime ago. Now here they were in high school. He didn't want to think about it, but the thought came to him that this was the beginning of the end. The whole thought made him sick.

He was finally back in the living room about to park his behind on the sofa for the rest of the year. He chuckled to himself. Those New Year's Eve jokes were corny as hell, but he considered them part of his appeal. He was always the happy guy among his friends. Little did they know or see the times when they certainly wouldn't recognize him. Crying himself to sleep on too many occasions was something he'd never publicly confess to doing. He was Dustin Henderson. He was the happiest guy on the planet. Yeah, right.

The remote control was a rectangle with a bright red button in the right corner that was an on off switch. He double checked his watch to be sure of the correct time. He hit the biggest button in the center that started the tape. It was time for the final countdown to begin. The new year of 1987 was nigh at hand.

Dustin had seen this movie so many times, he could quote it. He always enjoyed this movie. It had changed his life forever, five short years ago. There was a reason Han Solo was his favorite character. Han was the one everyone counted on in a clutch. Sure Luke was the hero, but Han was content to let someone else have the glory. Luke still counted on Han to get the job done when the situation called for it. Han reminded him a lot of Eddie.

The story progressed bringing Dustin to the edge of his seat more than once. It wasn't his first time watching. The young man knew how it would end. Luke was focusing in on that conduit to shoot with Darth Vader locking in his target ready to destroy Luke when BAM! Han Solo fired his shots to take Vader out of the way. It reminded Dustin of Eddie standing on top of that trailer wailing away on that ax in the Upside Down.

As the Death Star exploded, Dustin's watch went off with a special alarm signifying the official start of 1987. His fingertips were pressing into his eyes again as bitter tears assaulted his vision. All those feelings that day in the Upside Down came rushing back. Dustin spoke not a word as sorrow and deep loneliness filled his heart.

He couldn’t speak the words, but he thought them to himself. Happy New Year Eddie. Without you, this year is going to suck. Dustin reached for some napkins and tried to dry his eyes. He rested his forehead on his fingertips as he watched the rest of the movie with Han and Luke getting decorated by Leia. It should have been Eddie, Steve and Nancy but it wasn't. When the final credits rolled, Dustin felt cheated. This wasn't supposed to be like this. He really hoped 1987 was a better year. Right now instead of being hopeful, Dustin was melancholy. Getting older sucked.
 
"Never Change Dustin Henderson. Promise Me."
credit: james kriet

10/17/2022 01:49 PM 

Return of Evil post 2

Return of Evil, post 2
 
Wicket /1706817
attn: Suzie, mt: Max

Dustin was relieved to be back home after putting his mom on the Greyhound to Cincinnati. She was out of danger and couldn't be hurt by anything that was about to erupt in Hawkins. As an only child and with a great job at General Electric as an engineer, he knew that he could finally take care of her like she had him all these years. It was what any good son would do. Sure, he wasn't perfect but he worked hard to do right.

Growing up in Hawkins was no walk through the park. He was glad that things were calm while he was away. It meant he could focus on college. Something was missing though. That something was Suzie. He'd never forgotten that beautiful genius that had so enraptured his heart as a young age. Her religion had kept them apart as did the distance, which always felt unfair to him. Getting their chance before graduation was great and he loved it. Unfortunately both of them knew they needed to go to college first and establish their adult lives first. He always believed they would make their way back together somehow.

Turning toward the door, Dustin was looking for his car keys. There was some kind of to-do at the Sheriff's Office for Hop. He was sure Max would be there with more information about what was happening. His index finger fit inside the round ring when he picked it up. He spun it in his hand when he happened to lift his chin to look out the window.

Dustin couldn’t believe it. All the light of recognition made him positively radiant. He realized she saw him at the same time. When one soul identifies its missing piece, the part that makes it whole again, the natural alignment of the universe itself is ultimately perfect. Dustin flung open the door running outside to see Suzie looking more beautiful than he remembered. He wrapped his arms around her, lifting her off her feet. He held her close burying his nose in her hair. "Suzie! Oh my GOD it's so good to see you."

He held her close just a little longer before letting her feet touch the ground again. If she had said something, he let it go right over his head. "Let's get inside. We should talk a bit before looking for the others." He picked up her bags and carried them inside the Henderson home. "You can sleep in my old room. I'll just crash on the couch." He'd explain to her later about him sending his mom to stay at his house in Cincinnati. It was important to have this time alone with the love of his life before turning thoughts to the evil creeping back into his childhood home.

When she entered his home, Dustin closed the door behind them. "Can I get you something to drink? You came in from Seattle right? Or was it Tacoma?" It was pretty obvious she was here set to help them if Vecna was truly back. It had taken them all working together to stop him last time. Dustin was sure it would again. They were stronger as a group rather than apart. Just by looking at Suzie again, he knew he was better with her than without her.

The same sort of aire about town had been here when they beat Vecna ten years prior. The whole thing turned his stomach. Dustin was more sure than ever, this was going to all work out in the end all because there was more strength in numbers. The veil of evil was lightened even but for a moment with Suzie here in Hawkins again. For the first time since he came home, Dustin smiled.
 
"Never Change Dustin Henderson. Promise Me."
credit: james kriet

10/06/2022 09:19 PM 

These Dreams

These Dreams
 
Wicket /1706817
Special Salute to The Hellfire Club RPG
Oct THC Drabble

Feat: Suzie, Do You Copy and The Banished


All Hallow's Eve Kept repeating through Dustin's mind as he left The Family Video after seeing Steve. Steve was in rare form as he hooked up Dustin with some Halloween movies. The computer system at Family Video wouldn't let him check out the videos because he was only 16. Steve put them under his name and let Dustin take them for the holiday. This was his first Halloween with his girlfriend Suzie and it had to be special.

Dustin's mom was volunteering at the Community Center to help the younger kids have a safe Halloween this year. Dustin wasn't allowed to have an unchaperoned date just yet, so that's when that nice young man Eddie stepped up to the plate. Dustin was super close to Eddie. So Eddie used all his charm to convince Mrs. Henderson to let him chaperone the date. She was so taken by Eddie and his obvious affection for Dustin. All was set.

Dustin arrived at Eddie's uncle's trailer still rolling his eyes about Steve and his obsession with the official title of the Halloween holiday. "Eddie!" Dustin knocked on the door with his nerves starting to play with him a bit. He wanted everything to be perfect. This was going to be a day he remembered for the rest of his life.

Eddie opened the door from behind complete with spooky sounds and artificial spider webs. "Welcome Dustin Henderson. Mwahahahaha!" Dustin smirked as he entered the trailer.

"Everything looks great!" Dustin responded to the greeting. "Where's your uncle?" He handed the videos in the bag to Eddie who came out from behind the door. The further Dustin stepped inside the trailer the more he smelled that hot fresh pizza. His stomach rumbled just a little too loud and he turned a bright pink.

"Easy there big man. Your lady love will be arriving soon." He nudged Dustin. "He's actually at the Community Center with your Mom. I think he's got a crush or somethin." Eddie snickered.

The thought of Eddie's uncle and his Mom hit him a certain way that was a unique combination of nausea and morbid curiosity. That's when there was another knock on the door. Dustin's heart leapt into his throat. He scuttled away from the door and over to the sofa.

Suzie was on the other side of the door standing with Max. Suzie was staying with Max and her Mom in Hawkins. Max was about to go on a date with her boyfriend Matt but promised to see Suzie over to Dustin and Eddie. Eden took Suzie to Hawkins basically so she could see Dustin and Eden could see Argyle.

Dustin was sure that time stood still as he watched Suzie enter the trailer. She was an absolute angel and he was smitten. "Dusty Bun? Are you okay?" He felt himself suddenly thrust back into the Earthly Realms. Eddie entered the living room with two cans of Coca Cola Original Formula since nobody drank New Coke.

"Yeah! Yeah! I'm fine now that you're here." He grinned broadly showing off his perfect pearls. He pointed Suzie to the pizza and the pop cans that Eddie just sat out. "I hope you like pizza. Argyle insisted." Dustin couldn’t stop smiling.

Suzie rolled her eyes and smiled at the mention of Argyle. "Let's hope he didn't add anything extra to it." She grinned being this close to Dustin.

"He knows better." Eddie gave a knowing grin to the two and picked up the first movie to watch. "This one is a little old but a classic. Steve picked out some good ones, that's for sure."

Dustin waited til Suzie sat down before he did. Once both were seated, Eddie started the movie. A Nightmare on Elm Street was innocuous enough set in nearby Ohio. Dustin had to admit it was a bit creepy but he watched anyway when he wasn't stealing glances at Suzie. His Suzie Poo was so awesome and brave. She was enjoying the movie and the decent pizza that Argyle had made. Dustin liked it too. Who could have imagined that ham and pineapple wasn't all that bad after all?

Dustin turned his head back at the TV just as Glen was sucked back into his bed and exsanguinated in his sleep. It caught Dustin so badly off guard that he shouted aloud and jumped into Suzie's arms sending everything flying complete with the pizza straight up to the living room ceiling. It slowly started dripping back down and right in Dustin's curly hair.

Dustin was three shades of red now. With a silly grin on his face he stayed right there in Suzie's arms. "Happy All Hallow's Eve !" He had to admit being smooth and charming to one's girlfriend was a little more difficult with pizza sauce and melted cheese dripping in one's hair.
 
"Never Change Dustin Henderson. Promise Me."
credit: james kriet

08/09/2022 03:18 PM 

Important OOC Message

 
This is something I don't often do, but I feel I need to.   

I've been roleplaying online since the year 2000 in the old yahoo clubs.   That's a long time.   No, this is not a retirement announcement but this is a sort of "heads up" type thing.   

Last week I went to the gynecologist.  (Yes, I'm female in the real world.  Don't like it?  Leave.)   I've been having some "female" issues recently so it was time to get it all checked out.   I'm honestly glad I did. 

The news wasn't good.   The biopsies of the inside of my uterus showed something pretty scary.  I have Endometrial Cancer.   The C Word is huge and scary.   So I'm still trying to absorb the fact of that being attached to me. Trust me.  I've been doing a lot of research on this since the diagnosis came and even more so after I had the biopsies done last week.   Endometrial Cancer is HIGHLY curable and it's got a 95% survival rate.   I'm going to be seeing a Gyno-Oncologist soon and we're going to get a total radical hysterectomy done.   No need to worry though.  I've got two terrific kids and I don't want any more.    Next phase in my life is to be a grandma some day.    The women in my family live til their 80s, 90s, 100s.   I plan on being among those strong women in my bloodline.

Needless to say, this is going to affect my appearances around here in roleplay on the profiles I do have. I'm going to still be around, but there will be days that I just don't feel like writing or even talking.  Please don't take offense to that.   Cancer is a pain in the ass and it's taking a toll on my already poor health.   I'm going to fit this with everything I got, which means I'm going to have days when I don't feel like being here.

Writing has brought me joy for a lot of years.  I'm never going to give it up.   I'll still be here.  Just don't hound me for replies, starters, etc.   I'll get to all I can, when I can.   

I am outing my profiles to everyone because it's just easier that way.   I think everyone pretty much knows these fellas are me, so there's not big secret there.

Active

Dustin Henderson
https://www.roleplayer.me/1706817

Jonathan Byers
https://www.roleplayer.me/1797410

Steve Harrington
https://www.roleplayer.me/1796742

Billy Hargrove
https://www.roleplayer.me/1803271

Dr. Stephen Strange
https://www.roleplayer.me/1781835

Jay Garrick
https://www.roleplayer.me/1795543

Jeremy Gilbert
https://www.roleplayer.me/1606290

Tyler Lockwood
https://www.roleplayer.me/1623706

Peter Pettigrew
https://www.roleplayer.me/1739822


Some of these are more active than others.  And I just went through my list seeing other profiles I've had over the years that are still here and are absolutely inactive.  I won't include them here.

So yeah, I might have bitten off more than I can chew, but right now, I need what makes me happy.  Writing makes me happy even if I'm slow as molasses doing it.

if you made it to the end here, I appreciate it.   I just ask for patience, love, prayers, best wishes... just some understanding.    I know that some people like me out there and I know some people hate me.   It's whatever.  I've come to realize in just a few short days that life is far too short for petty squabbles on the internet.  So whatever makes you happy, fine.  Hate me all you want.   idc.    I'm just going to focus on my health and beating this cancer.

Thank you for your time and I appreciate all you guys who read this.

-Mel
(The writer)


 

08/07/2022 05:17 PM 

The Wish

The Wish
 
Wicket /1706817
Dedicated to 𝔗𝔥𝔢 𝔅𝔞𝔫𝔦𝔰𝔥𝔢𝔡

He was surrounded. The screeching sounds of the demobats were ingrained in his memory. Eddie had shoved him back toward the trailer with the full intent on escaping with him as the deadly creatures were raging full force at them. Eddie’s metal concert had done it. They were fully drawn away from the Creel House giving Steve, Nancy and Robin the chance they needed to take out Vecna at the source. Dustin was ready to get the hell out of there and to be safe once more. He could hear Eddie behind him. The plan was going well.

Eddie held the sheet rope so that Dustin could scale it as rapidly as possible. It was eye opening to see exactly how fast an overweight kid who played D&D could move up those damned ropes. He was safe finally in the real world of Hawkins. “Come on Eddie! EDDIE! What are you doing? EDDIE?!”


Dustin Henderson immediately sat bolt upright in what was his bed. Oaken curls were matted against his forehead as he had been profusely sweating the night before. His mother came running into his room. “Dusty? Sweetheart are you alright?” Her heart ached for her son. They’d been separated when the earthquake happened. She was just relieved that he was okay.

Dustin placed an open palm over his face. “It was all just a dream.” He kept breathing in tones trying to assure himself that everything was over. The terrible pain in his leg from his fall was an in depth reminder that he was in fact safe and the demobats weren’t going to get him anymore. All thanks to Eddie. “Yeah Mom I’m okay.” He moved his legs to the side of the bed and allowed his feet to touch the floor. The cold floor wasn’t anything like it was in December, but the realization of what had happened to him was far worse than winter’s chill.

Claudia Henderson didn’t like the fact her son was waking up screaming nearly every night following the earthquake. It was such a traumatic experience that no one knew how to react. She knew that there were far too many families who had lost loved ones in the whole disaster. The poor Carver family couldn’t even find Jason’s body. The whole thing made Claudia want to hold Dustin just a little bit tighter. She’d take a leg injury to her one and only baby versus losing him altogether. “Get dressed and come into the kitchen when you’re ready. Let me get you something to eat before you go to the School Gym.”

Dustin nodded. He didn’t think anything of it. Ever since they got back from the Upside Down, he was volunteering every chance he got. He was spending so much time with Eddie’s Uncle that it was therapeutic for both of them. The boy managed to shuffle into the bathroom to wash up as best he could. The fact that he was dealing with a bum leg wasn’t very conducive to getting into and out of a shower all that well. Plus running water decreased the water supply a bit too quickly. Rationing was a thing. It was all like his grandma had told him during World War II. They’d get through this somehow, right? The idea that the Upside Down was bleeding through to the real world was something Dustin tried his best to ignore. As he passed the window in the hallway, he stopped. The ash falling from the sky was increasing. Hell was coming. He missed the hell out of Eddie

He finally arrived in the kitchen. Dustin noticed there was a chocolate frosted cake sitting there on a plate with a solitary lit candle. He canted his head to the left. “What’s all this Mom?” His favorite cake was yellow cake with chocolate icing. Claudia stood there with a look of profound sadness in her eyes. That’s when he finally realized what this was all about. He sat in the closest chair. He buried his head in his hands and started to cry.

Claudia’s hand rested between Dustin’s shoulders. “Happy Birthday Dusty.” She spoke softly. She rubbed his back in a circular motion. Ideally no one should have spent their Sweet 16 like this, especially not her baby.

Dustin looked at the cake with bleary eyes. How could he have forgotten? “Thanks Mom.” He puckered up and blew out the candle. His only wish was that Eddie found peace. One summer could really change everything.
 
"Never Change Dustin Henderson. Promise Me."
credit: james kriet

07/09/2022 05:11 PM 

Return of Evil (Intro)

Return of Evil
 
Wicket /1706817
Mentions: 𝔗𝔥𝔢 𝔅𝔞𝔫𝔦𝔰𝔥𝔢𝔡

Getting away from Hawkins did seem like a logical step for him. Dustin Henderson graduated high school with his friends in 1989 at the rebuilt Hawkins High School. He had tested high enough on his SATs that he qualified to go to MIT. Getting a free ride to MIT was something he could’ve only dreamed of as he’d gotten older. He totally made it without having to get Suzie to fix any grades like she did ten years ago. He thrived among the other genius kids at MIT in the 1990s even getting hip deep into the blossoming nerd culture that included something called anime. Graduation was in 1994. He looked in the audience at his graduation to see if anyone was there from back home. Not only did he see his mom, but he saw a few other friendly faces that included Eddie Munson. He was happy his mom had made the trip out, but he worried about her. She was still back in Hawkins right in the middle of everything. She was getting older and he was too far away to actually help her with anything.

Dustin did miss all his friends and Suzie when he was at MIT. He had never forgotten the cheerleader or any of what had happened back in 1986 with Vecna. All that horror was why he tried to keep away from his hometown. He had all the trauma to last ten lifetimes. Upon graduation, Dustin did compromise somewhat and accepted a position as an engineer at General Electric in Cincinnati. He’d even bought a house in a quiet suburb of Cincinnati called Evendale. He enjoyed the silence and the unassuming nature of the neighborhood. It reminded him of Hawkins back in the early days. Starting over was something he’d never imagined in a million years. Being an adult was so different. All the horrors of Hawkins were behind him, or so he thought.

His mother often called him to just check up on him and tell him how proud she was of him. Dustin, living in Evendale and working for General Electric, was now a standard for two years. Claudia Henderson was once a helicopter parent, but sending Dustin to MIT for 4 years caused her to change her parenting skills and trust that Dustin was a grown man now. On her last call, Dustin had expected it to be one of those typical shooting the breeze calls, when he was unfortunately surprised. His mother mentioned the kids again that had been murdered ten years ago. This started to worry him. His instinct told him that now was a good time to take vacation and head back to Hawkins.

Hawkins, IN

The little red 1996 Ford Taurus pulled into the childhood home of Dustin Henderson. After the supposed Earthquake in 1986 and the final defeat of Vecna at their hands, the Henderson home was repaired by a contractor that had taken a fancy to Claudia. Dustin didn’t blame her for dating while he was in college. She had to be alone. Loneliness was a bitch. He knew that first hand. Claudia happily greeted her son with a tight squeeze and a smattering of kisses. Dustin chuckled and sat his bag down inside the living room. “Here I thought something was wrong Mom.”

Claudia sighed before finally letting her son free from her embrace. “Let’s get your bag in your old room Dustin. It’s still there.” She started to reach for Dustin’s bag. He had planned on spending at least a week with his Mom and looking up any of his friends who were still in Hawkins, maybe even see if Suzie had moved out her on a permanent basis since she was an adult now too.

Judging by how quickly she changed the subject, Dustin lowered his gaze. “Mom… What’s going on?” He asked in a low voice. His stomach started churning. There was definitely something wrong now. She was hiding it from him.

Claudia parked herself down in her favorite chair. Gray streaks were threatening to overtake her entire soft flowing brown curls. Dustin’s own curls were a mirror image of his mother’s. “Rumors Dusty. That’s all. Something about monsters running around in the woods. It’s nothing really… Then the death of the cheerleader from Hawkins High.”

Dustin’s heart leapt from his chest. “MOM! What the HELL? Why didn’t you tell me???” Dustin started to pace back and forth. “Are the others here? Have you seen them?” By the others he meant his friends and Eddie especially.

“Eddie comes by to check on me often.” Claudia mentioned passively.

Dustin reached for the telephone that sat on the table next to his mother’s chair. He started to dial a number. Stuffing the phone under his ear, he pulled out his wallet. “Yes, when is the next bus to Cincinnati? Yeah. got it. I need one in the name of Claudia Henderson.” He pulled out his credit card and began reciting numbers. “Thank you.”

“What in the world, Dusty?!” She demanded of her son. “You just got here and you’re sending me to your house?” Claudia inhaled sharply. “Don’t we get to spend some time together?”

“Your bus leaves at 7 tonight Mom. That gives you time to pack and for us to have a meal. But after that, I need you as far away from here as possible. I can’t have you anywhere near this mess again, alright?” Dustin’s expression was pleading. He hung up the phone from the Greyhound bus company and began to dial another number of a friend back in Evendale that would take her to his house. “Please Mom. You’ll like Evendale. It’s a lot like Hawkins, but SAFER.”

Claudia saw the expression on the face of her son and it broke her heart. “Only if you promise me that you’re going to be safe this time, okay?” The last time this happened, an earthquake ended up tearing apart the town. She didn’t want to live through that again. Dustin had just finished the arrangements with his friend Don who was an older engineer at GE. Don and his wife Ruby would take care of Dustin’s mom once she got there and look after her. It made Dustin feel so much more relaxed by the time he hung up the phone. “Of course I will Mom. I won’t let anything happen to me. I’ll just feel better if you’re far away from here.” The knots in his stomach told him that this was about to get really bad.

Anyone driving by the Henderson house would see the brand new Ford Taurus outside the house with Ohio plates on it. Anyone who lived in Hawkins recently would know that Dustin was living just outside Cincinnati. That and before Dustin arrived, he knew that his mother would have likely called a bunch of people to tell them that he was coming home for a visit.
 
"Never Change Dustin Henderson. Promise Me."
credit: james kriet

07/03/2022 05:30 PM 

Fireworks (HEAVY ST S4 SPOILERS)

Fireworks
 
Wicket /1706817

His heart was pounding. Dustin was helping hook up all of Eddie’s amps getting ready for their part of the plan. He’d been in The Upside Down before. He knew how creepy this place was. Having Eddie here did make it better. Steve was too busy being the hero to see how much Dustin was shaking inside. He was scared to death of what was about to happen. Vecna was calling all the shots in this dungeon and they were heading off into the inner bowels of hell with weapons at the ready.

The signal came from Erica. It was their turn for their Phase of the plan. Dustin looked at Eddie and Eddie looked back at Dustin. Dustin hit the tape player and hunkered down for a clear view of what direction the demobats would take. The first notes came and all bets were off. Dustin was even more in awe of Eddie than before. The way his fingers danced across the fretboard of the guitar was like a Master should. The raucous lyrics sung by James Hetfield tore through the Upside Down along with Eddie’s playing. Dustin couldn’t help but bang his head right along with the whole thing the entire time. It was a beautiful sight to behold. It was far better than anything he’d ever seen or ever would see as the years would eventually pass from this date. 

It was almost as though some of the powers that be joined in to make the concert even more metal that Eddie or Dustin imagined. Shots of red lightning lit up the skies behind Eddie as he was playing. It was better than any fireworks display on any Fourth of July than he had ever seen in the entire 15 years he’d been alive thus far. Dustin forgot himself for a moment until he heard the squeaking sounds of the Demobats as they took quite visible notice of what was happening.

Dustin shouted his countdown to Eddie as the music continued. It was like Eddie was in another world up there. Something was happening to his friend when he saw this all start to happen. Music was a powerful tool in terms of reaching the human psyche. Dustin knew this himself. He was watching it unfold right before him the longer Eddie played. No matter what happened Eddie was going to be Dustin’s hero from this point forward. As soon as the song was over, they ran for all they were worth to get inside the trailer itself.

They slammed the door shut using everything they could to keep the Demobats outside that were slamming into the trailer from coming inside and getting them. The path back to the real world couldn’t be invaded by Demobats chasing them, so they had to stop it there. They were bait but nobody needed them to die when there was so much at stake. Dustin felt his heart thundering in his ears as the monsters kept slamming against the doors and the walls of the trailer. His eyes were wide and his voice went up an octave because of the depth of this fear. Dustin was a scared kid in a nightmare world. They had a plan. They were supposed to stick to it. He remained behind Eddie clinging desperately to his jacket. If he let go of the jacket, then this nightmare would have more of a real feel to it. As long as Eddie was with him, everything was going to work out for the best. It had to

The screaming head of the Demobat that poked through the vent made Dustin scream so loud he’d be hoarse for days. Eddie sprung into action with the makeshift shield with the nails they’d made before they came into this hellhole calling these monsters to them. “You don’t have any more vents do you?” Dustin asked Eddie with a frenzy in his voice and terror in his young eyes.

Eddie jumped forward and slammed the other shield into another vent. “GO ON! Get OUT of here!” He pushed Dustin toward the sheet that hung down from the ceiling that led to the real world. The boy didn’t have to be told twice. Dustin pulled himself up on that sheet rope far better than any of those stupid ropes in gym class for that damn Presidential Fitness Test. He failed that year after year, but fortunately his other grades back in elementary school made up for that time and time again.

Safely back in the real world, he started to call through to Eddie. “EDDIE! COME ON EDDIE!” Dustin’s heart sank when he saw the sheet rope fall back on his end. Eddie had cut the rope and it fell at Dustin’s feet. “EDDIE NOOOOO!” He shouted.

It wasn’t going to end like this. Dustin backed up and took a running leap. Fortunately the trailer was small enough that he was able to reach the opening to The Upside Down with a single leap. He didn’t know where he got the strength, but the little pudgy kid that had a fondness for donuts and Little Debbie Fudge Rounds was pulling himself through this hole like he was Indiana Jones climbing out of a pit of rats. The force of gravity pulled him on through to The Upside Down where he landed flat on his back on the bare floor. Eddie had moved the mattress because he obviously thought that Dustin wouldn’t come back for him. The pain that shot through Dustin’s lower back and legs made him curse a few more times with words he’d never used before and since.

Dustin was physically hurt from the fall. He was running as fast as he could but with each step he took his pain was damn near unbearable. Tears were starting to well up in his eyes He could see Eddie from where he was. Eddie was surrounded by Demobats. They were all attacking him. Eddie was losing.

By the time Dustin reached him, the Demobats had all fallen down visibly dead for some reason. None of that computed to Dustin. Eddie sacrificed himself not only make sure that Steve could get his chance at taking out Vecna, but so that Dustin could be safe. “EDDIE!” He kept screaming the prone rocker dungeon master’s name as he lay there on the ground barely moving. Dustin’s cheeks were wet from tears by now, but he didn’t care. He just had to get to Eddie. Nobody deserved to die alone.

Dustin finally arrived just as the lights of life were starting to fade from Eddie’s dark eyes. “I didn’t run…” He whispered to Dustin as the boy cradled his head in his lap. “I didn’t run…”

The boy was blubbering by now barely making sense. All he knew was that his heart was shattered. “No.. Come on Eddie. We just need to get you to the hospital.” He was rocking back and forth with Eddie’s head in his lap.

“No…” Eddie told him. “...Don’t change…promise me…” Eddie told him. Dustin held desperately to Eddie feeling the muscles of the injured young man loosen at the moment he slipped away. Dustin clung desperately to Eddie just crying and not giving a damn who saw him.

He had no idea just how long he’d been there when he felt Nancy’s hand on his shoulder. Her soft voice reached out to him just as her gentle touch had. “Dustin. It’s time to go. Dustin..?” She rubbed his shoulders in an attempt to soothe the boy who’s heart was totally destroyed. They had to get back and see if Max was okay. One death was more than Dustin could handle. Who knew growing up would be such a bitch?
 
"Never Change Dustin Henderson. Promise Me."
credit: james kriet

06/09/2022 05:05 AM 

Subdivisions

Subdivisions
 
Wicket /1706817
The looming prospect of walking the hallowed halls of Hawkins High actually unnerved him a bit too much. Dustin Henderson knew some of what happened in Hawkins High thanks to his friend and mentor Steve Harrington. The Master of hairspray and repeated beat downs had just finished with a flourish only a year prior. Dustin looked at this whole scenario as him moving into the place to fill in the gap left by Steve. Great He muttered to himself. The amount of acrid fumes that came from the mere thought of this notion made Dustin ready to punch a wall.

His mind raced through a dozen scenarios wondering how in the name of God was he going to handle what lay ahead. Along with Mike and Lucas, Dustin had left Hawkins middle school with their heads held high and their geek status intact. The days of D&D in Mike's basement were a near but jaded memory. They weren't kids any more. They were taking those first steps into high school and with it, the prospect of adulthood staring them right in the face. Well sh*t. Dustin swore under his breath hoping that the release of that anxiety associated with a minor curse would be free. It wasn't.

Every social strata within the human race had with it classic examples to follow and examples to reject. Robin Buckley for instance was a band geek. Band members were somewhat cool in the eyes of the average high school student. Dustin lacked the discipline to play a musical instrument although after copious hours watching Disney cartoons that showed the correlation between mathematics and music the thought was slightly appealing. He took a pass on it however. This was not meant for him.

When Lucas told Mike and Dustin that he was going out for basketball, that made Dustin happy for his friend. Mike didn't appear to be sweating about fitting into the high school social scene like him or Lucas. It was getting down to the wire and Dustin was going to have to make a choice.

He was sitting on the couch in his living room while his mom was making dinner. After having his little adventure on Mother's Day, Claudia Henderson practically insisted on her son pledging a fealty oath insisting he would not go near the kitchen to cook again. He was slumped into the floral pattern on the sofa while being surrounded by the wood paneling on the wall. That's when it all started.

The news report switched from something useless and dull to bringing up the second subject that gave his life meaning. Dungeons and Dragons was the subject of this report. Dustin placed his feet firmly on the floor and began to scoot to the edge of the sofa itself. The reports were starting to pollute the screen about kids playing D&D and how they were actually taking their own lives as part of this Dungeon or that Cabal playing the game. The reporter interviewed some church leaders who came onto the screen with the same diabolical reports. The reporter himself looked at the camera to give his own assessment. The declaration that D&D was an instrument of evil made Dustin practically sit on the edge of the sofa. One of the local ministers spoke to the reporter as he was being interviewed. "It's full-blown satanic panic." The slightly annoying man who looked a lot like Mike's Dad was trying to sound the alarm in a manner of speaking.

That's when Dustin had an epiphany. The Hellfire Club was lead by the ultimate Dungeon Master and epitome of cool Eddie Munson. The Hellfire Club was a newer group at Hawkins High. He knew what he had to do. It was that night after dinner Dustin showed up at the door of Madeleine Vesta with his dice in hand and a manual under his arm. He was going to be the best D&D player that Hawkins High was ever going to see. Eddie was going to take notice of him and his skills no matter what it took.
 
"I Am On A Curiosity Voyage, And I Need My Paddles To Travel."
credit: james kriet

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