|dǫçţǫŗ şɭęęƥ (shined) wrote in valloic,|
@ 2020-10-22 15:08:00
|Entry tags:||!action/thread/log, haven: dwight hendrickson, the shining/doctor sleep: dan torrance|
WHO: Dan & Dwight
WHAT: Dan asks Dwight to marry him - er, be best man AT his wedding and they have a BFF talk
WHEN: Last week sometime
WARNINGS: Epic Brofessordom
|Vallo was rife with opportunities, but also could deliver harsh blows that felt like a hot iron to the face - that happened to be an irrefutable fact, and Dan knew it well by now; highs and lows, twists and turns, dips and flips, that was all par the course. Stan disappearing was one of the lows - the hole he left behind sat heavy on Dan’s heart, and he still grieved in a way, a grief that came and went like wintry waves. Still, he’d hang onto the good memories - preserve them, and not just let them gather dust and dirt in the corner of his mind.|
But that wasn’t all - as it turned out, Dan needed a best man. He was lucky in that he had a lot of people he could count on here, and provided an invisible tsunami of crackling magic didn’t crush this opportunity in a wave by taking any of it away, he had a friend in mind whom he wanted to ask. A friend who had built bombs with him - so could you get any closer than that? Maybe not.
He showed up at Dwight’s apartment, carrying a box of pizza and a six pack - of soda, not beer, but it still went well with pizza that was all greasy drips when you folded the slice in half, thin crust, hold the pineapple (he just had pepperoni and sausage on this bad boy). And he knocked on the door, since Dwight knew he was coming over - Dan had texted first. He was polite in that way (sometimes).
Dwight knew what losing people was. He’d done a lot of it over the years. Here it wasn’t really as much something he was experiencing, but the people around him were certainly experiencing plenty of it. Dan in particular had gone through a lot. Losing people, the Hotel. All of it seemed like a lot.
He opened the door, letting Dan in. Pizza was a wonderful thing and he couldn’t really argue about the occasional soda. He worked out enough to make up for pretty much everything he put in his body anyway. “Hey there, buddy,” he said, carefully taking the pizza and sodas from him. “And hi to you, too, Dan.” He gave him one of his best smiles before setting everything down. “Make yourself comfortable.”
“Ha,” Dan snorted a laugh, gladly handing over the precious cargo as he stepped into the apartment. The politeness also extended to taking his shoes off, because he didn’t want to put feet up on Dwight’s furniture - that was just rude. Though because of work he was on his feet all day, barely ever getting to sit - working a nursing gig in a clinic was a lot different than the bleary-eyed graveyard shift as an orderly in a hospice center back home in Frazier. Sometimes it was slow, after he’d dispensed all the meds he could, cut up all the food he could, and changed all the sheets he could.
Not so much at the clinic, but oh well - it meant he could consume pizza and drink the occasional soda without worrying about not getting enough exercise. Plus, he had a little storm cloud over him about losing Stan and wanted to eat his feelings now, what of it?
He sat on the couch, though if Dwight wanted to be sophisticated and actually eat at the kitchen table, that was fine too. “You’ve been good?” he asked. “And sorry in advance if I bring the mood down. It’s just that this place is the worst sometimes.”
Dwight felt at least somewhat pleased that he’d gotten a laugh out of Dan. It was a small thing, but he did his best to lighten whatever dark moods took over. It had been harder in Haven because everything was dark there lately. He mentally pulled himself away from those thoughts. He hope everyone was safe still. Maybe one day Audrey would show up or Nathan or even Duke.
“Yeah. Just patrols and the general mess that is trying to avoid random things in the forest attacking me.” But at least the team had a way of getting around the bullet magnet mess. This was probably one of the few times you’d see him without the bulletproof vest. If he was out, he was wearing it. You never really knew who might fire off a gun within a hundred yards of him. Then he’d have to deal with it.
“You don’t have to be sorry. Sometimes things suck. We’ve all been there.” He didn’t mind eating in the living room. It wasn’t like most things couldn’t be cleaned out one way or another. He’d figure it out. He set the pizza and drinks down on the coffee table before going out to get a couple of plates and coming back in, taking a seat next to Dan. “You wanna talk about it?”
Did he want to talk about it? That was the question. A part of Dan felt like hermiting about it, and just pushing it all down until it was miles and miles away from him and burning at the Earth’s core (this wasn’t even Earth, technically, but whatever). But he also knew that stewing wouldn’t do him any good either - and he was always a big proponent of talking things out instead of letting them fester.
He thanked Dwight for the plates, taking two slices of pizza (to start with - a stomachache was probably in his future) and popping the tab on a can of soda. “I don’t know, with Stan being gone - that one’s rough,” he sighed. “And yeah, people disappear all the time, but this one just hit close to home. He was one of the first people I met when I arrived here and right away I tried to be there for him, helping him polish his Shine.”
Stan was like a son to him, going so far as to refer to Dan as dad - so yes, that loss cut deeply.
Dwight watched him for a long moment before grabbing his own slice of pizza. He knew Stan was someone important to Dan. He’d seen them interact over the network a few times and Dan had mentioned him before. He took a bite from his pizza while Dan talked.
“Doesn’t matter how many or how few people disappear. If someone’s important to you, it’s going to hurt. And some people are going to hurt worse than others. You’re allowed to feel hurt because you lost someone.” He reached over to pat Dan’s shoulder. “Without any justifications,” he added on at the end. It was part of why he didn’t hold Nathan leaving against him. With Audrey gone and Duke gone and the Troubles still around, he could imagine that would send anyone into a spiral of bad choices. He just hadn’t had the luxury of it this time because he’d had to hold the town together while it was falling apart around him. “I’m sorry he’s gone. I know he was important to you.” There was a brief pause. “Seemed like a good kid.”
“He is,” Dan’s tone was fond - and he definitely was going to stick with that vow to himself - to hold the good memories close, and not let anything like sadness eat them away. Because there wasn’t anything to do about loved ones leaving - he knew it was a risk. Always. It was a risk every damn day, and yet he couldn’t live his life focusing on that.
Not like he didn’t know Allison could disappear at any time - that maybe he’d marry her then she’d be yanked out of this world, and he’d wake up alone. Of course he was aware of that. But for him, it was worth that risk - and he didn’t have time to live in fear, not anymore.
The soda was set down on a coaster (because, you know, manners) and Dan picked off a pepperoni slice that he popped into his mouth. “But yeah, it’s - there are definitely some that hurt more than others. I tell people they’re allowed to feel hurt about this shit too, and it’s true.” Now he just had to follow the advice for himself.
“He was going to be my best man,” Dan added. “So the job’s open now.” Okay, it wasn’t actually a job. Didn’t pay well. Or at all.
Dwight nodded. He had his post-death group and probably people that he was friends with. It seemed reasonable that he’d have said that before. “See? That means I’m super wise.” He managed a serious expression for a few seconds before he started laughing. He felt like he was at least reasonable when it came to these things, though.
When Dan mentioned the thing about the best man, Dwight arched an eyebrow. “You got someone in mind for it?” Cause he didn’t automatically assume it was him. Dan had a brother in law he got along with pretty well. Though, he was fairly sure Dan got along with everyone. He couldn’t place anyone that he didn’t like or that didn’t like him. There were some other friends he had, too, that Dwight could see him asking, but he wasn’t entirely certain of their names. Maybe he needed to get out more and know more people.
Super wise, yeah, Dwight had his moments. Dan’s mouth twitched up in a baby smile - this one even reached his eyes, thawed some of the gloom and blue winter that had settled there, thanks to this case of sads. “Well, I was wondering if you might want to?” he hedged. He’d have brought pizza and soda over anyway - if Dwight was having a bad day and needed a friend (and carbs) or just because. But pizza as a best man offering seemed okay too.
“It shouldn’t be too hard - we’ll just need to find you a suit or something,” he grinned. “And I guess...you’d make a toast at the reception?” And keep the rings safe as well. But Dan was pretty sure the best man wouldn’t be the only one to make a toast (it’d be with sparkling cider or something - this was a dry wedding) or a speech, so it’d be interesting no matter what.
He’d had some small successes and he considered every time Dan’s expression was on the other side of the sad part of things that he’d at least done his job as a friend to make him feel even momentarily better. As intimidating as he looked, the secret about Dwight was that he was soft inside.
There was a hint of surprise to his expression when Dan mentioned him being the best man. He didn’t think he’d ever been best man at anyone’s wedding, but he’d chosen an army buddy of his for his wedding. Not many others to choose from. “Pretty sure you don’t really say no to being the best man at your best friend’s wedding, so...yeah.” He laughed softly. “It’s been ages since I’ve worn a suit, but I can probably find something. Gotta be someone around here that makes bulletproof clothes, right?” Or he’d just wear his vest under everything. “But I think I can handle a speech. And everything else. Something to do on my day off.” The suit, that was.
Best friend? Well, talk about a case of the warm and fuzzies - Dan was afflicted with it just then. He too was soft inside, though he didn’t make much of a secret at that - even if there had been a period in his life when he’d beat someone’s face in just to maintain that shoddy connection with his father, a man he only understood when he was drunk and violent. Billy had helped him overcome that, however. Billy - he’d been Dan’s best friend back home.
Now he was gone and even if Dan left Vallo he would never see Billy again - maybe in the afterlife, maybe where they’d both find some semblance of peace. There was no way Dan was going for a replacement here in Vallo, but it was nice to have that kind of bond with someone again. Someone he trusted, whom he could call up in a panic about building a bomb to destroy an ancient evil.
“Oh yeah, bulletproof clothes won’t be a challenge for some of the people here with their magic,” he replied, his grin widening. Or the vest was good too, though Dan surely hoped there would be no one firing off gunshots at his wedding regardless. “Thanks though - it really...means a lot to me. And it’s coming up faster than I can believe.”
Garland Wuornos was probably the closest thing to a best friend he’d had back home. He wasn’t sure he’d give the label to Vince or Dave. Nathan and Duke were...complicated, but then what wasn’t? Still.
“Yeah. Hopefully just overkill on this side, but it’s something I’ve had to think about for too long in my life for it to just ignore completely. Call it life experience with a side of paranoia.” It was accurate anyway. Even more so with being Chief of Police. Part of him missed it, but part of him didn’t really miss the responsibility of it. Then again, maybe it wasn’t quite as much of an issue when it came to Vallo. Less comets falling and Troubles going wild. Still a good portion of shit going haywire, though. “Then I guess I need to get prepared. Cause I’m going to probably need to take whatever I get to a tailor.” But at least it would mean he had something in his closet for fancy parties if he went to them. “And write a speech. Good thing about the flexible hours.” He smiled a little. “But you’re welcome. Even if you didn’t really need to thank me for it.”
Lots to do, but staying busy wasn’t always a bad thing - this was a good kind of busy, or at least, Dan viewed it that way as he and Allison planned things. She’d done the whole wedding thing before but he never had - so it was definitely an experience. By and large, he’d been into it even if at certain points he just felt like he had no idea what he was doing.
But Dwight had been married once before too, so the advice was appreciated. “I can’t wait to see what kind of speech you come up with,” he chuckled, going back to his pizza. Pizza, an old and familiar friend - though he couldn’t ask dough and cheese to be his best man, so. Dwight was the winner.
“How are you, by the way? I hope things have settled down since our days of rigging up bombs?”
He chuckled at the mention of rigging up bombs. “Eh. What’s friendship if you can’t call someone up to ask them to build you a bomb with questionably acquired C-4?” Though, it was less questionably acquired this time. Vince and Dave didn’t really ask questions when you showed up joyously holding C-4. “And this time I wasn’t in an Indiana Jones costume. Not sure if that takes away from the experience or adds to it.”
But he hadn’t actually answered Dan’s question. “I’m okay, though. Just kind of figuring things out. Is it weird to miss a job that you were kind of pushed into because the Guard needed someone they could trust and someone that the general public didn’t fully hate? Cause...I dunno. Been thinking about it a little recently. Not sure what Vallo police get up to. Never actually went to the police academy. Just sort of ended up as Chief of Police.”
“I definitely wish the Indiana Jones costume had been a part of things,” Dan lamented, a touch of amusement there. “Bullwhip and everything, huh?” But right, back to Dwight’s question. Or observation. “I think it’s normal to miss all sorts of things back home,” he said. “Even things you might not have thought you’d miss.”
So yes, all of that sounded reasonable to Dan. Vallo giveth and Vallo taketh away (clearly) but while you were here, it was nice that you could grasp the opportunity to explore paths previously not considered before - for instance, Dan would never get a chance to go to nursing school back home. As much as he loved working in the field of medicine, being dead really put a damper on enrolling in any new educational programs.
“You could get involved with the police here?” he suggested, sipping his soda. “I know there’s a defense team, but - actually being a Vallo cop probably means getting more involved with the day to day lives of the natives.” There was crime like anywhere else, so it wasn’t as if it was ‘oh, dinosaurs just appeared, now what’ sort of situation.
“And everything,” he agreed, half laughing. “I’ll make sure to find a costume for the next time we need to explode a building.” He hoped they wouldn’t need to explode any other buildings, though, but he wouldn’t put it past this place. People had things that could come that they didn’t want, things they wanted to get rid of. Who was he to deny anyone?
He nodded at Dan’s words. He could. It would at least help him get more acquainted with the general public. It was probably easier than falling back into any of his other roles. He’d worked as a Cleaner for Garland. He could still figure out patrols while working with the Police. He let out a long breath. “Might give me more of an idea of how things work with the natives. At least I’d get to know people around.” It might mean having to be a little more clean about how he went about things, but he’d figure it out. He’d been Chief of Police before. “The Defense Team is a very relaxed sort of employment. There’s not a lot to do. It would probably work if I had more of a social life, but I’m admittedly less social than I could be.”
It seemed like the defense team did their patrols, and apparently you could get paid for hunting monsters in the forest or whatever - but it just didn’t appear to have the stability that a 9-5 job held, and most people were more used to that sort of thing. Dan also understood the lack of a social life - he didn’t need to go out and party (that was a hilarious thought), he was fine staying home and reading or hunkering down with Allison. He was kind of introverted though - had always been that way.
However, he had no problem bulking up his social life with those close to him. “Whatever you’re comfortable, with you know?” he shrugged. “I think it’s a good idea to sort of - take advantage of the time here and do what we want to do? You’d make a great cop, for the record.”
Things he never thought he’d say to someone. He didn’t have a lot of positive interactions with the po-po’s in the past, probably because he was the one on the ‘getting arrested’ side of things.
Dwight considered the words for a moment, the corners of his mouth twitching up in an almost smile. “It might be nice to know what it’s like to have more normalcy in policing. I guess it’ll be kind of similar to home, though. Something ridiculous will happen every so often. If I get a call about a unicorn robbery, I’m probably just going to feel right at home.” He laughed at the idea.
“I’m pretty even keeled. Unless I’m emotionally compromised and just put myself in risky situations.” But he hadn’t done that in a long time. Except for work. But that was practiced. He was fine with drawing bullets if it meant taking care of something that might harm others, he figured it was fine. It wasn’t like being a cop was different with or without the Troubles or Vallo’s brand of nonsense. “I don’t know how well they’ll trust me, but I’ll try.” He smiled slightly. “Thanks for the support.”
Unicorn robbery. That gave Dan a chuckle too, though honestly, he wouldn’t be surprised - shit always went sideways in the weirdest ways here in Vallo. “Yeah, no problem - what are best friends for?” he asked rhetorically and, hey, if Dwight wanted to be a cop then Dan would support him the whole way through - would even come to his police academy graduation, with bells on.
There would probably be more pizza at some point as well. For reasons.