Chapter 1: Sneaking Suspicions
Henry knew something was wrong the moment he opened that letter. The paper looked old and yellow, as if it had been torn from an ancient book. When he flipped it over, his suspicions were confirmed. Only a few lines of text were on the back, seeming to be the final page of whatever book it was ripped from, but Henry couldn't read them under the smears of pitch black. The page was splattered with splotches of ink, but the writing on the front was as clear as day, if a bit shaky.
It seems like a lifetime since we worked on a cartoon together. 30 years really slips away, doesn't it?
You're back in town, come visit the old workshop. There's something I need to show you.
Your best pal, Joey Drew
Henry stared at the paper in his hands for what felt like hours, his thoughts swirling in his head. Back in town? He wasn't anywhere near that studio. He'd moved hundreds of miles away not long after it was closed down.
And the handwriting, it looked similar to Joey's, but it was off, as if whoever wrote it was struggling to not only copy the style perfectly, but also hold the pen steady.
And the ink...
Henry let the paper fall from his suddenly numb fingers. He stared unblinkingly down at his empty hands with wide eyes. It felt like time had frozen, but as he watched his hands begin to shake, Henry knew that wasn't the case.
"Oh, god..." He whispered.
He remembered well what went down weeks before Joey announced the closing of the workshop. While waiting in the head animator's office for the man to return to their meeting after being called away, Henry caught sight of a paper on the floor under Joey's desk. When he picked it up, Henry was met with diagrams of Boris' anatomy, with notes and observations in the margins. But what was written on the bottom of the page was what really got to Henry.
"Can't get enough data from outside observations. more invasive actions will be needed."
Henry of course knew about the two living, breathing cartoon characters that lived in the studio. He was one of the few people who worked there that knew about them. They seemed to like him, so Joey allowed Henry to interact with the toons. He liked to think that they were good friends, so the thought that Joey might hurt them made his blood boil.
When Joey came back to the office, Henry confronted him. Joey said that he was just studying his creations just in case something went wrong. He assured his employee that the note at the bottom was just an afterthought, and he didn't plan to go through with it. Henry wasn't convinced, nor was he surprised. Being the youngest animator in the studio, he often got brushed aside.
Then, only two weeks after the incident, Joey fired all of his employees and closed the workshop doors. After that, there was no contacting Joey, no matter how hard Henry tried. He was worried about Bendy and Boris, but after a few years he decided that Joey wouldn't hurt his beloved creations. They were practically his children.
Or so Henry thought.
But this letter... it changed everything. Because it wasn't written by Joey Drew. It was written by Bendy.
"Oh, Joey... please tell me you didn't..."
Henry was out the door with his car keys not a moment later.
The drive to the old workshop was a long one, and Henry narrowly avoided being pulled over by the police several times, but the image of his dear friends, those lovable toons, being tortured by their own creator's hands drove Henry to his limit.
When he finally arrived in the familiar town where the workshop was located, Henry almost broke several laws to cross the final stretch. He drove through the trees on the outskirts of town, and parked his car in the brush a ways away from the old building where it wouldn't be seen. Henry crept through the bushes toward the workshop, and froze at the sound of a car starting up.
The rumbling of an old pickup truck roared past his hiding spot, heading away from the studio, and into town. Henry heaved the breath he had been holding in relief. That must've been Joey leaving. Perfect timing.
Standing up from his crouched position, Henry ran the rest of the way to the building. As he stared up at the familiar structure, he felt a pang of sorrow to see what it had become. Windows were shattered and boarded shut, graffiti marred the walls, and the roof seemed to be in the beginning stages of caving in. This used to be Henry's home. It used to be a safe haven where he could do what he loved. Animate.
But now it was a prison. A prison that held two of Henry's closest friends. Bendy and Boris. He hoped to god that they were okay. Though the sinking feeling in his stomach told him otherwise.
The front door creaked eerily as it opened, letting sunlight bathe the entrance hall. Dust floated in the rays, but the light didn't seem to pierce the darkness that lay within. With a deep breath, Henry stepped into the dilapidated structure.
Chapter 2: The Ugly Truth
Henry searches the old workshop for clues, but what he ends up finding is worse than he hoped.
Yeah I know this chapter is short as heckie, but I think I can get away with it considering I already posted a chapter today. Also, I fixed the chapter list. This fic is not complete and is definitely going to have more chapters.
The gloom was almost as black as the splatters of ink that drenched the walls and floor. Henry refused to think of where it might have come from.
The once cheerful and bright place gave off such a dark, demented atmosphere, it took everything in Henry not to turn tail and run. He had a mission, and he was going to go through with it even if it was the last thing he did. Oh, he really hoped it wasn't the last thing he did.
Even after all these years, Henry still knew the studio like the back of his hand. First, he checked Joey's office. Henry scanned the room with the flashlight he brought. Upon lighting up the back wall, where dozens of papers hung, he stopped dead. There were detailed drawings of things that made Henry wish he never opened the door. He now knew exactly what Joey meant by more invasive actions.
Henry stumbled out of the room as fast as he could, leaning heavily on the hallway wall, panting and trembling while struggling to keep his lunch from making an appearance. Soon, tears began falling from the man's eyes and he covered them with his sleeve to stem the flow.
His suspicions were confirmed. Joey really had been experimenting on his creations, and for who knew how long. He hoped it was a recent development, but the sinking feeling in Henry's stomach told him a different story. It took Henry several attempts to calm himself down, but he eventually succeeded. With renewed determination to find and rescue his friends, Henry pushed away from the wall he leaned against and quickly left the foyer and entered the corridor that branched off to the right. He had a hunch that he was going the right direction, because as soon as his eyes adjusted to the darker space, he noticed a trail of ink smeared on the floor, and small handprints of it on the wall.
He looked into each room that was unlocked and not boarded up, both hoping and dreading to find a clue as to what happened to the beloved characters that used to live here happily. It was the same thing over and over. old offices, still strewn with papers depicting Bendy and Boris, all smiles and play.
Finally, at the end of the hall stood a pair of double doors. Henry knew what was beyond, the Ink Machine. Joey's greatest creation. With it he made his cartoon a reality, gave his characters bodies to dwell in and lives to live. Henry had thought Joey loved his creations.
With a deep breath, Henry steeled himself for what he might see behind those doors. He had a feeling that he'd find something, but he didn't know if he would like it. With a mighty shove, the doors parted and revealed what lay within.
The Ink Machine, in all its glory stood in a dim spotlight, silent and dead and obviously turned off. This was what physically created Bendy and Boris, but Henry's knowledge of the machine stopped there. Joey never revealed exactly how he had built the thing, nor how to turn it on.
Henry tore his eyes from the thing that produced two of the most fantastic and unbelievable beings in existence, and scanned the rest of the room. Aside from the dim light shining down on the machine, the room was dark, but Henry could see a strange lump of something in the far corner. He didn't know if it was the lack of lighting, but he swore that the lump was moving.
Heart pounding in his chest, Henry approached the dark object. As he neared, he began to see it clearly. It was a puddle of ink, with a black mass in the center. When Henry finally stood right beside the thing, it twitched and groaned, turning over to reveal-
Chapter 3: Torrent of Black
Bendy needs help, and he needs it fast. Henry hurries to rescue his friend, but meets an unexpected roadblock.
Here you go! Chapter 3. It's a good one.
Also to note: I'm kind of rushing the events of the game to move the plot forward. Also, Henry worked at the studio, so he'd know where everything is and where to go. so he's not like the player in the game, wandering around aimlessly.
"Bendy!" Henry gasped, falling to his knees beside the poor creature. Bendy, now lying on his back- or, what was left of his back, turned his head to the human and sluggishly cracked open his toonish eyes, squinting against the streams of ink that slipped down his face from his degrading body.
When the little Demon's gaze registered Henry's form, he whimpered and curled up into a ball, trembling.
"N-no more, Joey... please..." the poor toon croaked.
Henry's heart shattered into a million pieces at the sight of his usually happy-go-lucky friend in such a state. The bottom half of Bendy's body was gone, melted into the puddle underneath him. One of his arms was half-melted, as was one of his horns. It even looked like he was degrading faster now that he was awake. Henry quickly raised his hands in a placating gesture, hoping to calm the toon and maybe stop him from melting so fast.
"Bendy, it's me, Henry! I'm going to get you out of here." He told the shaking creature.
Bendy slowly lifted his head from his awkward curled position and stared up at Henry, eyes wide and searching. "H-hen...ry?" He choked, black liquid spilling from his mouth as he spoke, but the man could still hear the desperate hope in the little character's voice.
Henry stifled a sob and reached out a hand to place on Bendy's head, between his horns. The man shuddered at the not-so-solid wetness of Bendy's body.
"Y-yeah buddy. It's me. I got your letter. Everything is going to be all right, okay? Just hold on a little longer." Henry managed to say around the lump in his throat.
Bendy breathed a sad little sigh and leaned into Henry's touch. "Th-thank... you..." the poor devil whispered.
Henry pulled his hand away, staring at the ink that clung to it and fell from his fingers in fat drops. "Bendy, what's happening to you? How can I fix it?" The man asked gently, trying and failing to hold back his tears to appear strong for his friend.
Bendy drew in a rattling breath. "D-Don't know. Joey... put someth-thin' awful... in m-me. Hu-hurt so much. Won't let me... use I-Ink Machine t-ta ge-get... better." The toon gasped out, choking on the liquid in his mouth and wheezing painfully to catch his breath as he spoke
Henry looked to the Ink Machine behind him. "You need the machine to cure you? I don't know how to turn it on." He whispered, hopes plummeting. No one knew how to turn the Ink Machine on except for Joey.
Bendy coughed weakly before lifting a badly shaking arm to point at a crate in the other corner of the room. "I h-hid the keys... locking m-mechanism in ped...estal room. C-couldn't do it... without Joey st-stopping me."
Henry nodded and stood up, determined. "Don't worry, Bendy. I'll save you. I promise." With one last reassuring smile from the man, he left Bendy's side to gather the keys, which turned out to be random objects, including a special addition Bendy the Dancing Demon record that he had lost while he was working there. With the keys all gathered in his arms, Henry ran out into the hallway.
He knew what room Bendy was talking about. The addition of the pedestal room along with Joey's explanation as to why, caused a few of the other animators to quit. Joey claimed that he needed to collect things to appease some otherworldly being. Seems it was all a ruse to hide the key to turning on the Ink Machine.
Henry quickly placed the items on each pedestal, hands shaking so bad he dropped almost everything twice. Finally, he heard a telltale hiss of steam, and the walls started to hum as the pipes began flowing with ink. Henry breathed a sigh of relief, but that sigh turned into a gasp as the building began to shake, and the exposed pipes in the room suddenly burst, spraying ink like a firehose. There must've been buildup in them from the machine being turned off for so long. Henry rushed from the room to escape the deluge, only to see more pipes shatter in the hallway. The floors became covered in ink, soon it was ankle deep, and Henry was struggling to drag his feet through the thick liquid that just continued to rise.
"Bendy!" The man shouted, hoping his little friend was alright as he struggled to reach the room where the poor demon lay dying.
Henry turned a corner, and suddenly saw stars as agony exploded in his face like a firework. He was unable to stop his fall and he toppled backward into the rising deluge of ink, dazed by a painful blow.
"You shouldn't have come here, Henry." A rasping voice hissed from above.
Henry tried opening his eyes, blinking away the black liquid that stung them. He could barely make out a tall figure standing above him, holding something long and slender in its hands. Soon he was able to see a man in a filthy black-splattered lab coat, gnarled grey hair matted on his head over a wrinkled face stretched into a snarl.
Henry's heart practically stopped in his chest as he stared up into the crazed eyes of Joey Drew.
Chapter 4: The Dam Breaks
Joey reveals why he did what he did, but Henry calls bullshit. Also, Bendy has a lot of pent-up emotions and he finally gets that hug he needed.
You all were calling for Joey's blood in the comments, but Idk if this is what you want. It's imperative to the plot for it to work out this way, tho.
This chapter has a photo imbed, and it kinda has body horror??? not horribly tho. also, Ignore Henry in the background. I messed up his face while inking. that's the danger when doing traditional art.
EDIT: I forgot I wanted to mention, Bendy has a slight New Jersey accent. It's very slight, but there. Think of Snap from Chalk Zone. That's my headcanon Bendy voice.
Despite being over sixty, Joey Drew looked incredibly threatening. His wrinkled face that used to be all smiles was now pulled into a scowl, and his eyes that used to practically sparkle with imagination were wild and unfocused. In his hands was a piece of splintered wood from a floorboard that still had a rusty nail in it, and Henry knew that the old man would use it with deadly force.
Despite being scared out of his mind, Henry's pounding heart filled with fiery rage at the sight of his former boss.
"Joey, you bastard!" Henry growled, holding a hand to his injured forehead. "I know what you've been doing! And I won't let it happen any longer!"
Joey laughed hysterically. "You don't know anything about my research!" The old man rasped. "I know the truth! I know everything there is to know about those abominations! They're too dangerous, too powerful. I had to destroy them both before they could turn on me! But Bendy fought back, so I had to weaken him first! You don't understand anything!" Joey raised the jagged piece of wood above his head, grinning crazily. "And now you ruined all my hard work! That monster will be at full power again and we will all perish! I won't give it the pleasure of killing you, I'm taking you down myself!"
Henry raised his arms to protect his head from the blow as the man he had once called his friend swung the makeshift weapon down at him with startling speed.
The blow, however, never came. Henry opened his eyes and gasped. From the rushing ink between them rose an arm. It was thin, five feet long and black as night, aside from the white glove that tipped the appendage, grasping Joey's weapon mid-swing.
Then, with an odd gurgling noise, a massive shape rose from the ink, and Joey scrambled backward, relinquishing his weapon to it. As the gooey figure stood, the thick black liquid covering the floor disappeared into its body, sucked up and gone as if it never existed to begin with, revealing none other than Bendy the Demon.
He now stood even taller than Joey, towering over the old man threateningly. Gone was Bendy's cute appearance. instead, his body dripped with ink, his horns were longer and sharper, as were his teeth. His pure white face seemed to glow in the dim light, staring down at his tormenter with pitch black eyes that used to be filled with warmth and glee, but now only held pure ice.
Joey's face was pale and his entire body trembled in fear. "B-Bendy, I-"
Bendy didn't let the man finish. With a swing of his arm, the piece of wood and Joey's head connected with a crack. Down he went, falling to the ground like a felled tree. A stream of blood trickled from where the weapon hit the man. He didn't move.
Bendy crouched down next to Joey's unconscious form. "That was for Boris, you bastard." The demon hissed before standing up. He kicked Joey into the wall with his huge foot, shaking it off after as if he had touched something filthy. Finally, Bendy turned around to face Henry. They stared at each other for a few moments, Henry on his back propped up by one arm, and Bendy standing over him so tall he had to slouch to prevent his horns from piercing the ceiling.
For a split second, Henry's heart dropped to his stomach. Was Joey right? Was Bendy going to kill him?
Then, much to Henry's surprise, Bendy's eyes filled with inky black tears and he sniffled. In a flash, he reverted back to his normal appearance and size of three feet, and threw himself into Henry's arms. Henry could only hold tightly to the poor creature as he sobbed and wailed, clutching to the animator as if his life depended on it.
"Oh, Henry! I was so s-scared!" Bendy cried. "I thought I was a goner! A-after Joey cut open Boris, he said he'd fix him, but then he said that he was goin' to k-kill us both! And Boris is... B-Boris... is..." the little demon's choked words fell away with a whimper. "I think... I think Boris is dead, Henry..."
Henry's already hurting heart exploded in agony. He clutched at the shaking form in his arms tighter, giving both himself and Bendy comfort. Boris... that kind, fun-loving wolf who always listened to Henry's worries no matter how unimportant they were... was dead.
"Oh, Bendy." Henry whispered, stroking the back of the now solid toon's head. "I'm so sorry..."
Bendy sniffled, "'S not your fault..." he said softly, voice muffled by Henry's shirt he was currently attempting to bury himself in. "J-Joey did this. Not you. You were always nice ta us, Henry."
Bendy's words of comfort fell short. Henry only felt guilty. "No. I tried to contact Joey many times after the workshop closed down. I was worried about you guys. Joey was acting weird and I was afraid he would do something. But, after a few years of no luck, I... I gave up." Henry sobbed, holding Bendy tighter. "I gave up on you guys... and look at what happened! I'm so, so sorry, Bendy. This is all my fault."
Bendy suddenly wrenched himself from Henry's arms, and the man felt a pang of loss, but he knew he deserved Bendy's wrath. Henry steeled himself for what was to come as he stared his friend dead in the eye.
"Shut your trap!" Bendy shouted, shaking hands clenched into fists at his side. "You didn't do this, Henry! Don't you dare take the blame from Joey! He's the monster here, don't make him seem any less!" Bendy's eyes were leaking black tears, and his whole body trembled with emotion. "Just... just knowing that you tried... that we weren't completely abandoned, makes me so happy." The little demon's shaking legs gave out, and he fell to his knees in front of Henry with a little sob. "Henry... you can't begin to grasp how thankful I am that you came. You could have ignored the letter like Joey did to all of yours, but you didn't. You came for me, Henry." Bendy lifted his head to stare into Henry's eyes, a wobbly smile on his face. "That's how I know you're a good person. The best around. So thank you, Henry. Thank you for rescuin' me."
By the end of Bendy's speech, Henry's eyes were full of tears again, and he didn't hesitate to wrap the little toon in his arms when Bendy leaned toward him. "Thank you..." The man croaked, choking on his intense emotions. Henry pulled away from Bendy, holding him at arm's length away by the shoulders. "I-I'll take you away from here! I'll take you home with me, and we'll live together and have fun, just like old times! I swear I will never let anyone hurt you ever again. I'll take care of you." Henry pulled Bendy back into a hug. "I promise."
Bendy nodded against the man's shirt, clenching the material in his gloved fists. "G-Golly, Henry... that sounds real nice." He managed to croak past the lump in his throat. "I-I just wish... Boris was here... t-to be free. But he's gone. He'll never know that we weren't really abandoned. He'll never know freedom..." Bendy started trembling again and Henry held him tighter, tears streaming down his own cheeks as Bendy's soaked his shirt.
"I know, buddy..." Henry whispered, petting the poor hysterical demon. "I know..."
Soon, Bendy's sobs tapered off, and he fell asleep. Sighing sadly, the man stood, hoisting his little friend up into his arms without waking him. Henry looked down at the still body of Joey Drew. The old man was still breathing, albeit weakly, but it was something. At least Bendy didn't have the death of someone on his conscience, and whether or not Joey would ever wake up from the coma the concussion would most likely cause was not their problem. So, with a hard kick to the unconscious man's face, Henry began the trek back through the studio.
Chapter 5: Backtracking
Bendy makes a startling discovery
ok guys! This will be the last daily chapter for a little while. I'm goin' to Salt Lake Comic Con! I'm hoping to find some Bendy merch in the artist alley, but I doubt there will be any.
any of y'all goin too? it'd be awesome to meet up!
anyway, this chapter is a doozy! long as heckie and it has a crappy lil' illustration as well, just to get you guys through the weekend of no updates.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
Somehow, the building seemed a little less dark as Henry backtracked through the winding hallways. He unconsciously held Bendy closer as he passed Joey's office, as if to protect the little guy from what was in there, despite the fact that the demon had already gone through the horrors documented in that room.
Despite finally leaving the demented place behind, it was with a heavy heart. Henry knew that Boris was still in there, and he wanted so badly to at least find his body so he could bury him, but Henry didn't want Bendy to see his best friend's corpse. He considered finding a hotel in town to leave Bendy in while he gave Boris a proper burial.
It was a relief when the exit came into view, and Henry started walking faster towards the open door that shed blessed light into the dark building. Suddenly, Bendy startled awake in his arms and his head shot up, nearly stabbing the man's cheek with one of his horns. The demon was struggling to look over Henry's shoulder, staring back into the gloom of the studio.
"Bendy, what are you-"
"Shh!" Bendy hissed, climbing out of Henry's arms and onto the man's shoulder, gripping his dark hair for balance. Bendy was stock still, focused entirely on the darkness they had left behind. With the shape of his horns and the look on his face, Henry could have called him a cat with its ears perked up in attention.
"Do you hear that?" Bendy whispered, voice shaking with an emotion Henry couldn't decipher.
"Shh!" The demon hissed again, pulling at Henry's hair in annoyance. Wincing at the slight sting, but obeying his friend, Henry stilled and waited for Bendy to tell him what it was that grabbed his attention.
The toon's eyes widened and his mouth dropped open in shock, choking on a little gasp. Henry was about to ask what was wrong again when Bendy suddenly leaped from his perch. Henry stumbled back from the force of the jump, and watched as Bendy landed hard on the floor and quickly scramble back into the workshop.
"Bendy!" Henry shouted before chasing after the ink demon. Bendy was fast, and the man could barely keep up with him as he ran into the other hallway that branched off from the main hall, the one Henry had yet to enter, for it had given him such a sickening feeling before. Now, however, that feeling was gone, replaced by worry for his little friend. He saw Bendy's tail whip out of view behind a door and he quickly followed.
"Bendy, wait u-" Henry shouted, but immediately choked on his words when he saw what was in the room.
The walls were splattered with ink, some looked old and dry, but most of it looked brand new, as it must've come from the several broken pipes that stuck out of the walls. The wood floor had a pit-style drain in the middle, surrounded by strange equipment that looked like they belonged in a hospital- or a serial killer's toolbox. But what had Henry's full and complete attention was the slightly raised examination table above the pit, and what lay on it.
It was Boris! The wolf looked like he was dead, his body unmoving despite the fact that Bendy was currently seated on his stitched-up chest, trying to shake him awake.
"B-Boris, buddy!" Bendy was saying, eyes wide and desperate. "I heard ya say something! I swear I did! You gotta wake up!" When the larger toon continued to be unresponsive, Bendy choked out a little sob and stopped trying to shake the wolf awake. He fell forward, arms wrapping around Boris' neck, head buried in his friend's shoulder. "Boris... please wake up. Everything will be okay now. Henry's here! He said he'd take care of me, but, it won't be the same without my best buddy! So please... please say something..." the silence stretched for a painful amount of time after Bendy's whispered words faded away, and Henry felt his heart break for the umpteenth time that day.
The human walked forward until he stood next to the table. He stayed there for a minute, letting Bendy cry into his dead friend's shoulder, before he placed a gentle hand on the demon's back.
"Come on, Bendy... he's gone. There isn't anything we can do..." Henry murmured, rubbing the back under his palm soothingly.
Bendy looked up at Henry with teary eyes and shook his head. "B-But I heard him! I swear..."
Henry opened his mouth to speak once more, but a tiny, almost undetectable whimper cut him off. Both he and Bendy froze, and their gazes fell back onto the wolf on the table. Boris' eyelids were fluttering, and his chest was rising slightly in jerky little movements as if he was struggling to breathe.
"He's alive!" Bendy cried and resumed trying to shake the wolf awake.
"What?" Henry gasped, reaching a hand forward and holding it over the wolf's mouth. Sure enough, he could feel the faint brush of ragged breath against his fingers. The man leapt into action, fumbling with the restraints that locked Boris to the table. They were switch operated, Henry deduced, and he quickly began searching for the release. He found it on the underside of the table, and with a click of a button, Boris was free. But he still didn't wake up.
Bendy was getting desperate, even going as far as slapping his best friend across the face in an attempt to wake him.
"Hey!" Henry gasped, grabbing Bendy's raised hand before he could strike the poor wolf again. "Don't do that!"
Bendy looked up at the animator with his big, black eyes that shone with tears, breath hitching. "H-He's not wakin' up... why isn't he wakin' up?" Bendy's little voice sounded so broken and hopeless, it made Henry's soul hurt.
(Just a lil' crappy drawing of a sad Bendy. He's not even in that position in the fic, but it's what ya get)
Softening his expression, Henry let go of Bendy's arm. "Maybe he's still too weak. Joey did something real bad to him, so maybe he just needs more time t-" Henry stopped abruptly when a drop of ink fell on his nose. He looked up and saw a cracked pipe directly above the table. "Or... maybe he needs more ink to heal." Henry looked back down at Bendy. "You absorbed a ton of ink, didn't you?"
Bendy nodded, looking guilty. "D-Did I take all of it before Boris could get enough?" He asked quietly.
Henry patted the toon on the head. "No, Bendy. You did what you needed to. But, I think Boris needs some of that ink now. Can you share it with him somehow?"
Bendy's eyes widened, shining with hope. "Yeah! Yeah I can!" He shifted his position on Boris' chest so that he was sitting lower down. "You just keep hanging on, Bo, I'll fix you right up!" He announced happily.
Bendy raised an arm and closed his eyes, concentrating. After a few seconds, the demon's arm wavered and suddenly lost its solid state, becoming a dripping facade of a limb. With a triumphant grin, Bendy plunged his liquid arm into Boris' chest.
The little demon's eyes flew open, then closed tightly as he made a pained expression. "Joey took his insides..." Bendy choked. "They're trying to grow back, but he didn't get much ink from the machine." Bendy looked guiltily down at his friend. "I didn't let you get enough, buddy. I'm sorry." Then the demon's expression changed to one of determination. "I'll fix what Joey did to you, Boris! You'll be good as new! I just gotta..." Bendy's words fell away as he focused entirely on his task.
Henry noticed that he unconsciously stuck his tongue out the side of his mouth in concentration, and he felt a feeling of nostalgia wash over him. Back when he worked in the studio, back when everything was normal, Bendy would hang out with him while he drew. Whenever Henry was too busy to talk with the little toon, he'd give him paper to draw on. Bendy would throw himself into his drawing, tuning out everything as he worked. He always made a face similar to the one he was making now. It was relieving to see a bit of the old Bendy shining through the obvious scarring he had to deal with now.
"There!" Shouted Bendy, startling Henry from his thoughts. He looked up at the man, a proud grin on his face. "I gave him plenty of ink! He should be better in no time!"
Henry smiled. "Good work, buddy!" Bendy beamed at the compliment. "We'll wait until Boris is awake to leave. As much as I want to get out of here, he is much heavier than you and I don't know if I can carry him out." Henry looked down at Boris' unconscious form on the table, frowning. "Good thing you heard him back there, or else we would have left him behind." The man's heart hurt at that thought. If Bendy hadn't ran back into the workshop and noticed that Boris was breathing, Henry might have come back, only to bury him alive.
The feeling of Bendy's hand on his shoulder was what brought Henry from his sickening thoughts. The man looked up at his friend, who wore a worried expression on his face.
"You okay, Henry?" Bendy asked, head cocked to the side.
Henry shook himself and nodded. "I'm fine. Just really glad we didn't leave Boris behind."
Bendy gave him a sad smile. "Me too. It wouldn't be the same without Boris. When Joey told me that he'd finished Bo off, I felt like giving up, but I knew Boris wouldn't want that, so I tried to escape. But, before I could, Joey hit me with somethin'. It made me real weak and I knew I didn't have much time left, so I dragged myself to where I hid the keys to the Machine. When I got there, though, I was too exhausted to move anymore. I thought I was a goner, but then you came! It's because of you that both Boris and I are alright now!" Bendy's grin was positively blinding. "Thanks again, Henry."
Henry smiled back at the demon, touched by his words. "You're welcome, Bendy. If I had known what Joey was doing sooner, I would have been here faster than you could say- GAH!"
Henry's words were quickly ended by the gloved fist that suddenly smashed itself into the underside of his chin, forcing him backwards. Henry landed hard on his ass a ways away from the table, feeling dizzy from the vicious blow.
"Henry!" Bendy shouted, drawing Henry's blurred gaze to the demon. Bendy was scrambling over to him, looking worried. "Hey, you okay? What happened?"
Despite Henry's pounding head, a nagging thought occurred to him. If Bendy wasn't the one to hit him, then who did? Henry gasped and looked past the worried ink demon to the table behind him.
"Boris!" Henry gasped.
Bendy spun around to stare at the examination table, where a hyperventilating cartoon wolf lay, curled up on his side, trembling. Bendy quickly scrambled back over to the table and climbed onto it.
"Boris! Buddy, are you alright?" Bendy asked worriedly, patting his friend's shoulder. Boris only let out a strained whimper. "Speak ta me, Bo!"
"B-Bendy?" Boris rasped. "Wh-What are you doin' here?" Suddenly, he sat up, nearly knocking Bendy off the table. He grabbed his fellow toon under the arms and lifted him up effortlessly, eyes wide and wild. "Ya gotta get out! Joey's in here! He'll hurt you! An' he's bound to be mad after I socked him in the kisser! Save yourself, Bendy. I'm too far gone. Look at what Joey did to m-" the wolf's words stopped, and his frantic look was replaced by a confused expression. He looked down, and stared at his unmarred chest with a look of disbelief. Not even the stitches remained.
"I... I... What happened?" Boris whispered in awe as he lifted his hand to touch his chest.
Bendy grinned, wriggling in Boris' grip, trying to reach out and hug the wolf. "I fixed you up, Bo! Everything will be okay now, I promise. Look who's here!" Bendy gestured to Henry, who was picking himself up off the ground, rubbing the nasty bruise beginning to form on his chin.
Boris's eyes widened before he quickly pulled Bendy to himself, holding him protectively. A rumbling growl rose in his throat and his fur stood up as Henry took a step toward them.
Henry stopped his advance, looking at Boris with a confused expression. "Boris... what's wrong? It's me, Henry." He said softly.
Bendy squirmed in the wolf's arms. "Bo? Don't worry, Joey's not a problem! I slugged him good! He's takin' a nap way over by the Machine." He told his friend happily.
Boris seemed to relax slightly at that, but he continued to growl at Henry. "What about him? Bendy, we can't trust any of the old folk, they're all completely bats, just like Joey!"
Bendy stilled in the wolf's arms. "W-What?" The demon said, voice muffled by the fur his face was being shoved into. With a swift twist of his body, Bendy broke free from Boris' grip and landed on the floor. He stood in front of Henry, a shocked look on his face. "Bo! Ya got it all wrong! Henry was never like the others. Don't you remember? He always treated us like real people, an' he saved me, Bo! I would have croaked if it wasn't for Henry! You know him, he's a good guy!" Bendy shouted, stamping his foot for emphasis, staring challengingly up at Boris.
Boris stared back, seemingly speechless. Then, his expression became shadowed, and he looked down. "We thought Joey was a good guy too, Bendy! And look at what he did!" The wolf snarled. His uncharacteristic behavior was shocking, and both Bendy and Henry could only stare in disbelief as the toon raged. "He took your arms to see if they'd grow back! He turned you into a puddle of ink and then brought you back over and over! He cut me open! He did all that... because he could! What's stopping it from happening again? I don't want to see you hurt again, Bendy... my heart couldn't take it. I just can't trust a human with our safety. not again..." Boris' words fell away into a whisper near the end of his rant, and tears welled up in his eyes as he looked away.
Bendy was trembling on his feet. If Henry wasn't behind him for support, he probably would have collapsed. "B-Boris... I-"
"Then let me earn your trust again." Henry interrupted. Both toons looked to the man in surprise. Henry had an agonized look in his eyes and tears fell freely down his cheeks. "I can't begin to understand what you two went through. I can't possibly hope to heal all the scars you'll have, but I can take you away from here. I can take you away from the pain. I can give you a place to live where you won't fear the next day. All I can do is try. But that can only happen if you give me the chance, Boris." Henry then gave a weak little smile and patted the head of the little demon that stood in front of him. "Besides, Bendy's all hopped up on a boatload of ink. If I did something bad, he could kick my keister from here to Timbuktu." Henry's smile wobbled and fell off his face, leaving behind a sad frown. "You gotta give me a chance, Boris. I just want my friends to be safe and happy, I promise."
Bendy leaned into Henry's hand and smiled. "He's telling the truth, Bo."
Boris stared Henry down with an intense, searching gaze, as if scrutinizing his very soul. Henry tried hard not to squirm under his stare. Finally, the wolf gave a tiny nod.
"Okay. I'll give you a chance, Henry." Boris said, but before Henry could thank him, his gaze turned hard and cold as stone. "But if you do anything to hurt me or my buddy, it won't be Bendy who will rub you out, I can promise you that." The wolf growled.
Henry gulped nervously, but nodded.
He knew Boris never broke his promises.
(don't forget to comment! comments are the highlight of my day!)
Chapter 6: Out in the open
The crew finally leave the workshop, and the Toons learn that Henry really loves his car.
Hey guys! Sorry for the late update... I have an explanation, though!
I've started an ask blog for this fic/AU! I would love it if you followed and asked lots of questions! Most asks will be answered with art, too!
Here's the blog: https://ask-bendy-the-little-demon.tumblr.com/
Also, Henry's car is a 1971 Buick Rivera. Look them up, they're beautiful.
NOTE: THIS FIC TAKES PLACE IN THE 1970s. I forgot to mention that earlier. If the studio shut down In the beginning of the 1940s due to Joey going batshit crazy and the fact that newer cartoons were drowning the good ol' rubber hose animation style, thus pushing Joey's cartoon to end or change drastically. So yeah.
Also Henry is like, in his fifties. Thought you aught to know.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
It was a great relief when Henry saw the front door. Walking back through the studio had been a quiet and dark affair. After a quick stop to find Boris' overalls, it was a straight shot out. No one spoke a word, not even Bendy. Boris made sure to stand between Henry and his little friend, but once they neared the exit, Bendy rushed ahead and practically flew out the door. Henry and Boris hurried to follow.
They found Bendy lying on his back in the gravel lot in front of the studio like a cat bathing in sunlight. He was practically purring. Henry laughed aloud at the sight, and even Boris chuckled.
Bendy heaved a loud sigh of satisfaction, then leaped up and bounded back to his two friends. "It's been so long since I've seen sunshine! Isn't it amazing, Boris?"
"It sure is, pal." Boris grinned and took a deep breath of fresh air, only to double over in a hacking coughing fit a moment later.
Bendy was by his friend's side in a flash, patting his back, or as much of his back as he could reach. "Ya gotta be gentle with your new organs, Bo. They're still trying to regenerate completely." He said.
Boris choked out a laugh, Ink dripping from his lips. "Y-Yeah... Woulda been nice to know that before." He wheezed.
Bendy winced. "Sorry, Boris. I got caught up in the excitement." He grinned suddenly and shuffled his feet. "I'm all jittery! We weren't really allowed to go outside much even before Joey went bats! And now we're gonna drive places! I've always wanted to ride in a car!"
Bendy was practically vibrating in excitement, and the sight made Boris smile. "I know you have, pal. You used to talk about cars all the time."
Henry watched the interaction, relieved that Boris wasn't in pain any longer. Bendy's happiness seemed to ease him, but Henry wished he could help. Though he doubted Boris would be very appreciative of that, no matter how much Henry yearned to comfort his friend.
After tending to Boris, Bendy hopped over to Henry, grinning. "So, what kind of car do ya have? I don't care if it ain't all that ritzy, I just wanna ride in it!" He asked.
Henry smiled. At least Bendy trusted him, not that he blamed Boris for his feelings toward him. He just felt so helpless when it came to the wolf. Bendy, however, was practically clinging to Henry, and while that could potentially be a problem, it was a start. At least he could do something for one of his friends at the moment.
"Why don't you go see for yourself, buddy?" Henry said, motioning to the gravel road that led through the trees. "I parked it in the trees so Joey wouldn't find-" he suddenly froze, eyes wide. "Oh shit- my baby!"
Henry took off down the road, practically flying into the trees and out of view. Bendy and Boris exchanged looks, but shrugged and raced after Henry. They found him frantically inspecting an odd expensive-looking car, brushing fallen leaves off the shining vehicle and peering into the windows.
When he was satisfied, Henry breathed a sigh of relief and slumped against the car. "She's fine, thank goodness. I thought that bastard might have slashed her tires or something."
Boris looked confused. "...her?"
Bendy, however, sported a huge grin and his eyes sparkled. "Oh Henry, she's beautiful!" He squeaked, gazing at the sparkling muscle car in awe.
Henry blushed and rubbed the back of his neck bashfully. "Really? Most people think the boattail model is ugly, but I love the new Buick Riviera. It runs like a dream." He grinned. "She's my pride and joy."
As Bendy looked the car over, Boris gave one tire a little kick, a pensive look on his face. "You sure this thing is safe? It looks sorta strange." He didn't want Bendy riding in something potentially dangerous.
Henry smiled at Boris, not offended in the least by the jab at his car. "It's perfectly safe! I drove it here, after all." He didn't mention that he drove it here very recklessly.
Boris glared at the car for a moment longer, but then shrugged with a grunt. "Fine. Just be sure to drive safely." He said.
"Of course." Henry assured Boris. He unlocked the car and opened the passenger side door. After finding and pulling a lever on the seat, he shoved it forward to make room. "Now, there is a backseat, but it's kind of hard to get to and it's more cramped than the front. I think it would be best for Bendy to ride in back."
Bendy practically deflated. "Aw, I wanted to sit up front." He sighed.
"I'll ride in back." Boris quickly interjected.
Henry looked the wolf up and down with a raised eyebrow. "Boris... you're almost seven feet tall. You sure you'll be okay?"
Boris peered into the back seat, and hesitated when he saw the limited space, but he shook himself out of it, "I'll be fine. Let Bendy sit up front." He repeated.
Bendy glanced from the car to Boris, fidgeting guilty. "You really don't have ta."
Boris shrugged. "It- uh... doesn't matter to me where I sit." He said haltingly, his gaze flickering away from Bendy to the window of the car.
Henry frowned, confused. Boris was obviously nervous about riding in the back, but why? He didn't remember Boris having claustrophobia, but after thirty years that could have changed, especially with the horrors Joey put them through. With a sad, guilty feeling in the pit of his stomach, Henry realized that a lot of things have changed in those years, but he didn't know exactly what they were yet. He'd have to figure it out as he went, and what better time to start than the present.
Henry pushed the seat back into place and stepped away from the car. "It's ok, Boris. You don't have to sit in back." He said, drawing the toons' attention back to him. Boris looked like he was going to object, but Henry continued, "I know you're just trying to make Bendy happy, but I have a solution. Why don't you sit in the seat, and have Bendy sit on your lap? He's small enough and the seatbelt will cover you both. Technically we aren't supposed to, but that way you get more room and Bendy gets to look out the windows while we drive."
Bendy nodded his head, grinning in excitement. "Sounds good," he turned to Boris. "Right, Bo?"
Boris looked relieved, and let out a little breath he seemed to have been holding. "Yeah. That's better."
Henry smiled gently and stepped away from the passenger seat. "Well, then we'd better get going. The sooner we leave this place the better."
Boris hesitantly approached the car and bent down to get in, but almost immediately straightened and stepped back. He looked uneasy again, and his breathing seemed a little quicker. Henry reached out, and the wolf startled and flinched away from the hand he placed on his shoulder. Boris pinned the human with a wide-eyed stare.
"It's okay, Boris. It's not as small as it looks. We can keep the window rolled down the whole time, and if you need to get out for a while, just tell me and I'll stop, I promise." Henry coaxed gently.
After a pause, Boris gave a jerky nod and shrugged off Henry's hand. "I'll be fine." He grumbled before finally getting into the car. Bendy climbed in after him and stood on the wolf's knee. He reached for the seatbelt and gently pulled it over them both, even as Boris stiffened when it crossed his chest.
"If I'm smothering you, Bo, I can get in the back." Bendy offered with a smile, patting his friend's hand.
Boris shook his head, eyes darting around nervously. He unconsciously reached up and pulled at the seatbelt. "N-nah... I think I'd rather have ya up here with me." He said quietly.
Bendy nodded in understanding and pried one of Boris' shaking hands off the belt and held it between his. "It's gonna be alright, Bo. We're finally leaving. We're free from Joey, we're free from the studio. We're going to a place we've never been, and it might seem scary, but at least it's a change. Just keep thinking that, ok? I'll be right here with you. We'll be at Henry's before you know it." The little demon said softly, smiling up at his friend.
Boris took a breath and let it out before returning Bendy's smile shakily. "When did you get so wise, Bendy?" He chuckled.
Bendy grinned. "I dunno! But it helped, right?" He asked hopefully.
Boris nodded. "Yeah. I feel a little better. Thanks, pal." The wolf patted the space between the demon's horns affectionately.
While the two toons talked, Henry had to look away. He felt like he was intruding on something private. While he was sad he couldn't help calm and comfort Boris, he was grateful that Bendy could, even if it was just a little.
Unsure what else to do, Henry started the car without a word, and it roared to life. He looked back to the two sitting in the passenger seat when he heard a sharp intake of breath. Boris was tense again and his eyes were wide.
"Wh-why is it shaking? What's that sound?!" Boris cried, hands clutching the seat cushion so hard he was likely to tear the leather.
Bendy was quick to calm his friend. "Bo, it's alright! That's what cars are supposed to sound like, right Henry?"
Henry nodded and put the car into drive to pull out of the bushes and back onto the road. "Yeah. Well, not all cars sound like that, but this one has a 455 engine, so it's loud, but it's powerful and fast. We'll be at my place in no time, Boris." He smiled at the toons before turning his attention to his driving as he pulled off the gravel driveway in front of the studio and onto a paved road. "Remember, if you need me to stop, just say so."
Boris nodded, though Henry didn't see it. Bendy had his face pressed to the window as they drove through the trees, eyes wide and grin stretching from ear to ear.
"Trees are so pretty, aren't they Boris? I nearly forgot what they looked like. Have they always been so green?" The little demon babbled as his pointed tail waved around happily.
Henry smiled, and without taking his eyes off the winding road said, "you can roll the window down if you want."
Bendy quickly did just that, and soon a pleasant flow of air was spilling into the car. It brought the scent of the nearby river and tree sap. Bendy took a deep breath of the fresh air. "This is so nice. I'm so used to the smell of rotting wood and ink." He mused to himself. The sound of Henry snickering made the demon turn away from the window and look at the human questioningly. "What?"
Henry smiled and shook his head. "It's nothing. I've just always wondered how you could smell things without a nose." He chuckled.
Bendy reached up and touched his face where his nose should have been, going cross-eyed. "I dunno. I guess I've never thought about it." He said with a shrug before turning back to the window and promptly sticking his head out.
Not a second later, though, Bendy pulled it back in and rubbed at his eyes furiously. "Oof, don't do that with your eyes open, Boris. Stings somethin' awful." He warned while Boris fretted over him.
Henry stifled a laugh. It was at least a four hour drive to his home, but he had a feeling it wouldn't be a boring one.
As a reminder: this fic is not focusing on any romantic ships, only platonic ones. So the whole thing with Bendy sitting on Boris' lap isn't meant to be shippy, alright? And I know sharing a seat is dangerous, but I had to add more Bendy and Boris interactions.
Don't forget to follow the ask blog and comment here!
Chapter 7: Homecoming
Henry takes the toons to their new home. Bendy wants to pet everything.
*arrives two weeks late with Starbucks* Hi! Sorry for the horrible delay! Here is the long awaited chapter. It sucks and it's short, but It's all I could squeeze out in the slump I've been in lately.
Henry was right about one thing, the trip wasn't boring in the least.
"Look! Cows!" Bendy exclaimed, pressing his face to the window. For the entirety of the trip so far, he was in that position, eagerly soaking in the scenery as it flew by. They drove through simple fields and farmland at the moment, but that didn't seem to bore Bendy whatsoever. "Can we stop to pet them? Pretty please?" The little demon begged.
Henry laughed, not annoyed in the least by his friend, despite it being the fifth time he'd asked a variation of that question. "No can do, buddy. Some of those are bulls, and they're dangerous. I don't want you gettin' hurt. I have a dog at home if you wanna pet an animal.
Bendy whipped around to stare at Henry with wide, sparkling eyes. "You have a dog?" He whispered in awe. Henry nodded in reply. "What's his name?"
((here have a crappy illustration. I can't mcfreakin' draw car interiors hhhhh))
Henry's smile fell off his face. "His name is- uh- well..." the man's cheeks were flushed red as he struggled to form words. Finally, he sighed, looking resigned. "His name is... Hamster."
Bendy and Boris blinked at Henry, silent for a few moments, then, the smaller of the two broke into a raucous laughing fit. "You named your dog Hamster?!" Bendy shrieked.
Henry hunched his shoulders and ducked his head in an attempt to shield his tomato red face without taking his hands off the wheel. "When I was a kid I had a pet gecko named Gerbil, and then a bird named Kitty, so I had to keep the tradition going when I got Hamster."
Bendy tried and failed to Hold back another bout of laughter. "That's rich! A dog named Hamster! Please tell me he's a Chihuahua or something at least!"
Henry stayed silent.
This time, Boris joined in on the laughter. "You're kidding! What breed is he? Oh, you gotta tell me!" Bendy's eyes were wide and pleading, shining with mirth and little black tears.
Henry couldn't refuse those eyes, despite his wounded pride begging him to spare it's life. "He's... he's a pharaoh hound." The man mumbled.
"Never heard of that one, but it sure doesn't sound like a little dog. Oh, Henry, you've doomed your pet to be bullied by all the other dogs. How irresponsible of you as a parent." Bendy said in mock horror, placing a gloved hand over his heart and shaking a finger at him.
Henry cracked a smile and laughed along with the two toons. He had a feeling his life was going to get a lot more interesting from then on.
Bendy had fallen asleep in Boris' lap by the time Henry neared his home. It was located in a thickly forested area outside of a small town in Northern California. As he drove along the winding road through the trees, Boris stared out the window in silence. Henry gave up trying to converse with him an hour ago, as Boris only responded with clipped replies and grunts. The silence wasn't uncomfortable, though. It was kind of nice considering just a little over an hour before, Bendy was babbling away about anything and everything. Not that Henry didn't like Bendy's chatter, it was a reminder that he was alive and well.
Henry turned the car down a side road, and drove across a little bridge that went over a creek before stopping before a large iron gate. He put his car into park and opened his door. "Gotta open it. Be right back." He told Boris, who simply nodded.
Henry quickly unlocked the padlock keeping the gate closed and pushed both doors open with a metallic squeal. He got back into the car and drove past the threshold before stopping once again to close and lock the gate behind them.
Boris was looking at him weird when he got back into the car. It took Henry a moment to realize why.
"Oh, I'm not trying to lock you guys in, I promise. Here," he pulled out the gate key and offered it to Boris. "You hang onto this until I can make a couple more copies for you." Boris looked surprised, but took the key anyway and tucked it into the pocket on his overalls.
Henry nodded and began driving again, up a narrow winding driveway. Soon they could see a large two-story house appear through the lush trees. It was a fairly large home, painted a light shade of grey with darker accents and a wrap around porch. It was set in a large clearing of tress, most of it being a lawn and a flower garden visible around the back.
Boris continued to stare at the house through the window even after Henry parked the car in front of it and opened the door to get out.
"Henry." Boris suddenly said in a wary voice, startling the mentioned man as he moved to exit the car.
"Y-Yes Boris?" Henry asked, sitting back down and twisting to face the wolf.
"You didn't say anything about anyone else living with you." Boris sounded angry.
Henry looked confused, then he realized what the toon meant. "Oh, no one else lives here. I'm unmarried and I inherited the place from my father. My brother and my cousins like to bring their families here to visit sometimes, though, so all that space isn't completely wasted. Besides, now you guys are here! You'll make the place seem less empty." Henry's smile was a happy one, so Boris chose to believe him for now.
The wolf simply nodded to Henry and looked down at the sleeping demon on his lap as the human left the car. "Come on, pal. Time to wake up." He said, prodding Bendy gently.
Bendy squirmed and made a soft noise of protest as he stubbornly tried to stay asleep. "Five more minutes, Bo..." he mumbled, covering his face with his gloved hands.
Boris was about to speak again when the car door opened, startling him into covering Bendy with his body and snarling at Henry who stood outside the car. Henry jumped back at the sound of Boris' growl, but was quick to recover and try to calm the wolf.
"It's ok, Boris, it's just me. Sorry for scaring you." Henry said.
Boris stopped growling and looked slightly embarrassed for his outburst. He opened his mouth to say something, but Bendy chose that moment to speak up. He poked his head out from under Boris' arms, blinking blearily. "Wha' goin' on?" He slurred, rubbing the sleep from his eyes with a comically huge yawn, showing off his sharp little fangs.
Boris let go of his friend, smiling sheepishly. "Nothing's goin' on, buddy. We just got to Henry's house." He told the little demon.
Bendy immediately perked up, all signs of sleep gone. "Really?!" He gasped. "I wanna see!" He leaped out of the car, nearly bowling Henry over in the process.
The demon's mouth gaped open in awe as his wide eyes took in everything. The sun was shining, birds were flying in the clear blue sky, the cool breeze rustled the foliage of the surrounding trees, the flowers were in full bloom, and Henry's house had even been recently painted. Everything was so bright and vibrant. It took Bendy's breath away.
"Oh... oh golly." Bendy whispered, slowly spinning in a circle to take it all in. Soon, a huge grin split his face and a fit of giggles bubbled up in his chest. "Oh, golly!" In a flash, Bendy was a blur of movement, scrambling here and there, dashing up and down the driveway, clambering on top of Henry's car for a higher vantage point, babbling about every little thing he saw. He leaped off the vehicle and landed in a heap on the lawn.
Bendy yelped and scrambled to his feet, bouncing from foot to foot, laughing. "I didn't know grass could be so soft and prickly!" He exclaimed before flopping down and rolling around in it. "It smells so nice! Everything here is amazing!" Bendy stopped moving and just stayed there, lying on his back in the grass with his eyes closed. He took a deep breath of fresh air and opened his eyes to stare up at the bright blue sky. Little black tears blurred his vision and his grin was as wide as could be.
"I think... I think I'm gonna like it here, Henry." The demon whispered.
Henry couldn't help the smile on his face and the blurring of his own eyes as he watched his little friend. 'You know, buddy? I think I'm gonna like having you here, too.'
Chapter 8: new life
The toons meet Henry's loyal dog, Hamster, and they begin the process of settling into their new home.
SORRY FOR THE WAIT!!! I had major writer's block for like... two months. And, I decided to start a couple other fics like a doof.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
The peaceful moment lasted for a total of thirty seconds before Bendy suddenly sat up ramrod straight. He turned his head to Henry and pinned him with a wide-eyed stare.
"Henry, where's the dog!?" He asked breathlessly.
Henry choked on a laugh, which caused him to fall into a coughing fit. "Of course you'd want to see him first thing." He wheezed out. "He's in the back yard where there's a fence. I can't have him running around when I'm gone. Stay here, I'll go get him." The man hurried away, a grin on his face.
Boris watched him walk away and disappear around the back of the house, before looking back down at his fellow toon. Bendy was currently distracted by a tiny red bug on his finger. He stayed as still as could be, hardly daring to breathe in fear of hurting the delicate little beetle as it crawled along his hand.
"Boris." Bendy whispered. "Boris look! It's a ladybug! They don't look anything like they do in the cartoons! Isn't she wonderful?" He slowly lifted his hand higher for his friend to see.
Boris crouched down next to Bendy. "Oh wow." He said in awe. "I knew they were red but I didn't know they were that bright!" He gently reached out a gloved paw as if to touch the ladybug, but it suddenly lifted its outer wings and took flight, darting away. Bendy and Boris gasped and watched it disappear from sight.
They were both startled from their serene trance by a sharp bark. They turned toward the noise and saw Henry walking across the expanse of lawn with a medium sized dog bounding about his legs. The dog's short, smooth fur was a light chestnut color, and his eyes were a golden brown. His slender body and long legs gave him a graceful look; or, it would if the dog wasn't leaping and stumbling in its excitement, nearly getting tangled up in Henry's legs.
"Yes, yes, I love you too, Ham," Henry laughed, shooing the dog away from him. "but I'll fall on you if you keep doing that, you pest." He scolded. Hamster only barked happily, his thin tail wagging so fast it was a blur.
Bendy's happy gasp caught both the human and the dog's attention. Hamster cocked his head curiously at the sight of the strange creature a few yards away. The little demon was jumping from foot to foot excitedly with his hands clasped together against his chest. "Oh, golly he's so shiny! I didn't know dogs could be shiny!" Bendy gushed. He grinned wide and opened his arms up as if asking for a hug and gave a little whistle. "Here boy! Come meet your new pal, Bendy!"
Hamster seemed torn. His tail was low, but not quite tucked between his legs. He looked more curious than scared as he took a few hesitant steps forward. Ham's nose twitched as he sniffed the air. He didn't seem to mind the smell of ink while he continued to creep forward. Bendy graciously stayed still as the dog stopped in front of him, sniffing once again. Bendy slowly reached out a hand, and Hamster sniffed that as well. Henry and Boris watched with bated breath, knowing that Bendy would be devastated if the dog rejected him.
Their fears turned out to be unfounded as Hamster suddenly leaped onto the little demon, bowling him over, yipping happily. Bendy's laughter was music to Henry's ears as he watched the two tumble around on the grass. 'A demon and his dog, a tale as old as time.' He thought, chuckling to himself.
It was all fun and games until Hamster gave Bendy a big slobbery doggy kiss. It was at that moment Henry remembered that his two new charges were made of ink, which contained Para-Anisidine, a very toxic substance. It was also the moment that Hamster realized that his new friend did not taste good.
That was how Henry ended up having to catch his slippery pet only to then hold the squirming dog's mouth open so Boris could clean it out. Bendy stood off to the side hysterically apologizing.
After panicking a lot, Boris told Henry that the toons had some control over the ink they were made of, like some kind of ink-kinesis power. Atrakinesis? Which was lucky for poor Ham because all Boris had to do was pull it out of his mouth in one big glob and he was safe. Henry was confident Hamster wouldn't try to lick Bendy again, but he was relieved there was an easy fix just in case. He didn't know what he'd say to the vet. The kind of ink Bendy and Boris were made of wasn't even really used anymore, so how could he explain how his dog even came into contact with it?
"The little fella will be fine, Bendy." Boris told his worried friend as he manipulated the last of the ink out of Hamster's mouth.
Henry let the dog go with a sigh of relief. Hamster leaped away with a huff and shook himself thoroughly. He gave Henry a betrayed look and a sneeze before bounding back to Bendy's side. The demon promptly hugged him around the neck, apologizing profusely as if the dog could understand him. Hamster simply wagged his tail and bumped the side of his head against Bendy's. He didn't try to lick him again.
The whole ordeal made Henry realize something. He had no idea how to take care of his friends. He was responsible for them, but he knew next to nothing about them physically. He'll have to ask them about everything to make sure he doesn't do something wrong. He'll have to be careful from now on. This was a big change that would affect him for the rest of his life and theirs. He wanted to take care of them to the best of his ability, he wanted to make them happy, he wanted to give them the life they deserved.
Henry vowed then and there to do whatever he could to help and heal his friends. No matter the cost.
"What are you thinking so hard about, Henry?" Boris suddenly asked, startling the man from his thoughts.
He looked over at the wolf that stood next to him. Boris was nearly a foot taller than Henry and had an intimidating figure. In person he wasn't much like his animated counterpart. He wasn't all that lanky, and his snaggleteeth weren't exactly rounded. He had actual fur as well, it was made of ink, yes, but it looked and felt like fur. He certainly didn't look like a pushover, though in personality he was before, that definitely changed over the years.
Henry sighed and gestured to Bendy and Hamster as they played. "I just realized that I don't know much about you guys. I'll need to know a lot more than I do if I'm gonna take care of you."
Boris looked suspicious, eyeing Henry critically. "What kind of things would you need to know?"
Henry caught on and quickly shook his head, holding up his hands placatingly. "Nothing extreme! Only what you guys need to live. Do you eat? Can you eat? I've never seen you eat anything before. Are you allergic to things? Do you need sleep? I have seen you sleeping before. What kind of unconventional things would hurt you guys?" Henry rambled. "You know, the essentials. We'll probably figure the rest out as we go."
Boris looked relieved and a little embarrassed. He scratched his head as he cocked it to the side, thinking. "Well, uh... We can eat. Joey never let us for some reason, but I've snuck snacks from workers before. It isn't essential, but Bendy likes the taste of food, at least. We don't have allergies, either. We do need some sleep, but not much. And the only thing that can really kill us is water if we're submerged for too long." Boris listed, ticking each off on a finger.
Henry nodded along, committing the new information to memory. "What about little things that will hurt you? Will you dry out in the sun? What about rain?" He asked.
Boris' muzzle scrunched up as he thought. "We don't dry out, and I've never experienced rain before, so I couldn't tell you. I don't reckon a little rain would hurt us, but I'm not so sure. Just give us a roof over our heads and a place to sleep, an' we'll be fine." He concluded and turned away from Henry to watch Bendy play.
Henry frowned. He didn't just want to provide shelter for them. He wanted to do so much more. Boris didn't have any reason to expect anything else from him, but Henry was going to prove him wrong if it was the last thing he did.
"Boris!" Bendy shouted, drawing Henry's attention. The little demon was holding Hamster under his forelegs up toward his fellow toon. The dog didn't seem to care. "Here, hold him! He's so smooth! You gotta feel it!"
Boris hesitated, but obeyed after a moment of indecision. He reached out and picked the dog up, his gloved paws nearly completely encircling Hamster's chest. The wolf brought Ham closer to his face and gave him a sniff. Hamster responded by sticking out his tongue as if to lick Boris, but decided against it halfway and just left his tongue out. Boris gasped quietly, eyes wide. "Oh... oh my..." He suddenly brought the dog close and hugged him tight, spinning around on his heel. "He's adorable! And yer right, Bendy! He is real smooth!" Boris laughed.
Bendy grinned as wide as could be, happy that his best friend was smiling and laughing after so many years. "Told you so! Now, give 'im back!" Bendy reached up toward Boris, grasping at the air.
Boris whined, holding Hamster higher out of his little friend's range. "In a bit, Bendy. I just wanna hold him for a little longer." He nuzzled the top of Hamster's head and gave him a little squeeze before handing him back to Bendy.
Bendy held the dog close to his chest. "Henry, Hamster is the best dog in the whole wide world!" He exclaimed, looking up at the mentioned man with wide, sparking eyes.
Henry laughed and patted the space between Bendy's horns. "He sure is, bud. Now, let's all go inside so we can talk." He said before heading toward the house. He didn't see Bendy and Boris exchange nervous glances before following with Hamster in tow.
The front door opened up into a small room that held a few potted plants, book shelves, and a piano. There was a closed door on the far left side, and a door-sized opening on the opposite side that led into what appeared to be a kitchen. The room had big windows that looked out over the porch and front lawn. Next to the door was a wooden bench with space under it where a pair of shoes were visible poking out. Henry sat heavily on the bench and pulled off his boots before placing them under the bench.
Bendy plopped down next to him. "You want me to take off my shoes?" He asked even as he struggled to pull said shiny cartoonish footwear off. "Boris is barefoot, so I dunno what you want to do with him."
Henry gave a start when Bendy began to tug at his foot and quickly said, "N-No, it's ok! You don't have to-"
With a comical pop, off came Bendy's shoe. Henry blinked in astonishment. He didn't even know Bendy could do that. The toon saw Henry's shocked look and grinned mischievously, wiggling the shiny black cloven hooves that were revealed. Henry could only gape.
Bendy giggled. "Wacky, ain't it?"
Boris gave a snort from where he stood by the door. "Bendy, humans can take their shoes off, it's not all that strange." He chuckled.
Bendy pouted and stuck out his leg and pointed at his hooves. "But human feet don't look like that! Even you don't have feet like mine! I've got wacky feet!" He protested.
Henry, recovering from his shock began to laugh deep and loud. Bendy and Boris looked at him in puzzlement as the man fell into stitches. Henry struggled to quiet his guffaws, but it took him a good minute or two to do so. Once he did, the man wiped his eyes and said, "Bendy, your feet aren't strange. They're hooves!"
Bendy cocked his head. "Hooves? What are those? Why do I have hooves and not fuzzy feet like Boris? I want fuzzy feet!" He said, glaring as he yanked off his other shoe and plonked them both under the bench.
Henry chucked and shook his head. The toons were just full of surprises. "C'mon, lets go to my study. I'll explain that and more there." He said as he stood up with a groan. The man walked across the small room and into the kitchen, beaconing the toons to follow.
Bendy and Boris gazed around eagerly as the three walked through the kitchen, Bendy's hooves clicking against the tile floor. The kitchen and dining room consisted of a large freezer, a counter with a double sink, an island counter with stools, and a table with five chairs. The dining room was connected to a small sitting room to the right, with floral print couches complete with doilies and large paintings hung up on the wall, illuminated by a large window and a glass door through which the garden could be seen. Through an arched entrance to the left of the dining room was a living room with a television in front of a long couch and a recliner. There were several closed doors along the wall to the right of the TV. Between both sitting rooms was a wall against which a wood stove stood. To the left of that was a door. Henry opened the door and disappeared around the corner.
Bendy scrambled after the man, and discovered a case of stairs going up in a sharp incline through the door and to the right. The toon quickly scampered up the stairs. Henry waited at the top for his charges.
Once Bendy crested the stairs, he could only gasp and stare. The room he entered was tall and huge. From floor to ceiling were massive book shelves, full of colorful books. There was a large bay window between two shelves on the opposite side of the room, letting the waning light of the setting sun spill into the magnificent room. There were chairs, couches and coffee tables scattered around. a single desk with a lamp sat against the only bare wall. a few of the chairs had books stacked on top of them, as did the tables. The study had a homey, well-used feel. Bendy immediately fell in love with it.
"Oh golly, Henry..." Bendy whispered, turning around and around to take it all in. "It's so beautiful!"
Henry smiled. "I thought you'd like it, bud. I know how much you like to read." Henry murmured, patting the little demon affectionately.
Henry motioned to a couch and went to clear a stack of books off of it. Bendy sat down obediently and folded his hands in his lap and kicked his legs. Hamster jumped up onto the couch next to him and rested his head on Bendy's lap. Boris was already perusing Henry's collection, but he didn't touch any of the books. Henry cleared his throat to get the wolf's attention. Boris nearly jumped out of his skin at the noise, but quickly recovered and sheepishly approached and sat next to Bendy.
Henry pulled up a chair and sat in front of the toons. He noticed how they seemed to grow nervous, and smiled in an attempt to ease them. "Now, since you guys will be living here with me, I'll have to set some ground rules." The toons' nervousness turned to something akin to fear in their eyes, and Henry was quick to continue, "Just a few things to keep you safe, don't worry! The most important rule is to tell me where you are going if you're going outside. Those woods are easy to get lost in. I know them like the back of my hand, so I can find you if I have to go looking, but I will feel much better if you tell me where you are going beforehand. Second rule, if you hear someone that isn't me, you have to find a place to hide. I don't often get visitors, but if I do, it's best that they don't discover you. Third rule, you are to come to me with any and all concerns. I'm here to take care of you guys, I want you to feel safe in my home. If you need help with anything, come to me. And last but not least, what's mine is yours. You are allowed to go anywhere on my property. This is your house now too. Just, try not to break anything." Henry finished.
Bendy and Boris exchanged glances, seemingly confused. "That's it?" Boris questioned incredulously.
Henry raised an eyebrow, puzzled. "What do you mean? I'll probably add more little rules as we go, but those are the main ones."
Boris looked away and glared at nothing while Bendy fidgeted in his seat, head bowed and widow's peak low as he worried over something. Finally, he looked up at Henry, who was shocked to see little rivulets of ink slipping down his stark white face.
"What about... a-about punishments?" He whispered fearfully. Boris glanced sharply at his fellow toon before pinning Henry with an intense gaze.
Henry suddenly understood what was wrong. He just told them rules, but not the consequences of breaking them. With a sinking heart the man realized that they probably feared the worst.
Henry straightened his back and put on a stern expression. "If a rule is broken deliberately, you will get a stern talking to and lose privileges such as tv, free time, and... uh... well, you don't have many things yet so I'll get back to you on that one. You may also be sent to your rooms to think." Henry stated firmly. After a few beats of silence with Bendy and Boris staring at him in shock, Henry broke into a fit of laughter. "Sorry, I'm not used to this. I'm only familiar with helping my brother and sister out with their little kids. You guys are much older than them! I don't know what I'm doing." Henry smiled at his new charges. "I guess we'll both be learning along the way!"
Bendy and Boris exchanged yet another puzzled look before staring once again at Henry. The man continued to laugh, which oddly put them at ease. Soon, they joined him.
They were an odd trio for sure, but they'd make it work.
there you have it! Hopefully I've shaken off the writer's block and will be able to post the next chapter a lot sooner. Don't forget to review! Reviews are the highlight of my day.
Chapter 9: In The Dark
Bendy finds out what he is, or what he's based on, and he is not happy about it. Henry and the toons have some dinner and head to bed, but not everyone in the house is sleeping soundly...
aaaaay. How's it goin'? Yeah, its been a while. Sorry about that. I've just been in a slump, but I think I'm pulling out of it. I wrote like half of this chapter in one sitting. It's a long one!
Now, there has been some confusion over whether or not Alice is in this au, especially with the awesome new chapter. Keep in mind that this fic was started back when only chapter one was available. Alice did not exist to the masses yet. Unfortunately, I had quite a lot written already when chapter two came out, and I didn't want to rewrite the whole thing to add her in, so I thought up a reason for her absence in the au. This explanation has been posted on the blog already, but I'll put it here as well. It is as follows: Alice was added to the show later on (as stated in the game), by that time, Bendy and Boris had already been brought to life via the ink machine, and had been living in the studio for a couple years. Unfortunately, it was also around this time that Joey began to fear his creations. He became convinced that they were going to turn on him, and he didn't want to add another character to aid them. Thus Alice was never brought into the world. Bendy and Boris were deprived of a little sister all because Joey thought they were dangerous. Not long after, Joey had his breakdown and closed the studio doors.
(See the end of the chapter for more notes.)
(recap: the toons are now in Henry's house, chilling in the Library on the top floor)
It was once the laughter died down that Bendy spoke up about Henry's promise. "So, you said you'd tell me about my feets!" The little demon said, bouncing excitedly in his seat.
Henry grinned and chuckled at Bendy's antics before getting up and walking toward one of the book cases. "It's just 'feet', Bendy, not feets. And I think I have a book that will interest you." The man said as he ran a finger along the many colorful spines in front of him. Finally, he plucked a book off the shelf and began flipping through it as he turned around and walked back to his chair. Henry sat back down and turned the book around so Bendy could see, pointing at an illustration on one page. It was a drawing of a fire-spitting demon with goat legs, bat wings, horns, and all. "See, this is what a traditional demon is supposed to look like. They don't really exist, but your design was based on them," Henry explained.
Bendy gently took the book from Henry and sat it on his lap, staring at the scary illustration. He looked up at Henry, a worried expression on his face as he pointed at himself. "I'm supposed to be one of these things?" He squeaked.
Henry smiled reassuringly at the distressed ink creature. "Loosely based, obviously. You're supposed to be a demon, but you aren't really a demon. Like I said, they don't exist. Kind of like how Boris is supposed to be a wolf, but obviously he isn't really a wolf. But see-" Henry reached over and pointed at the drawing. "You've got the horns, the tail, and the hooves! Like I said, it's just how you were designed back when you were a drawing on paper. Your heart is pure as can be, so don't worry about what the book says about their behavior."
Bendy looked relieved at Henry's explanation, and looked back down at the drawing curiously. He tilted his head and pointed at the bat-like wings protruding from the horrible demon's back. "Why don't I have wings?" He asked.
Henry was silent for a few moments as he thought. "I'm not sure. Joey was the one to design you both, not me. Maybe he thought wings would be too hard to animate constantly?" The man sat back in his chair, a hand on his chin as he studied Bendy. "You know what? You'd look pretty nice with a pair of wings. I'm sure you'd love to fly, too."
Bendy's eyes sparked at the notion. Henry stared at the toon for a few more seconds before shrugging. "Well, it can't be helped. I wish I was around when your character was still in development, maybe I could have mentioned adding wings."
Bendy looked crestfallen, his bottom lip trembling a bit as he touched a finger to the illustrated demon's wings. He didn't say anything else, though. Henry felt bad for the little creature and reached out a hand to pat Bendy's shoulder. "Maybe one day I'll be able to take you flying. There's a little airstrip in town that does helicopter rides over the valley. It's a bit of a tourist attraction. One of the pilots is a buddy of mine. I'm sure you'll love it."
That seemed to cheer Bendy up a tad, but he still looked down. Henry smiled sadly and gave the demon's shoulder one last pat before standing up. "Well, we'd better get you two settled in! Your rooms are this way." Henry waited for the toons to stand from the couch before leading them across the room to a wall where, between two spaces in the book cases, stood two doors.
"Here are the guest bedrooms. Well, I guess now they aren't guest bedrooms anymore. There's another one downstairs, but I'd rather you guys stay in these ones, since mine is just over there-" he pointed down the large room, toward the stairs. They couldn't see the door because of an obstructing book case, however. "-so you can come to me for help in the night."
Bendy looked from one bedroom door to the next. "Which one is mine?" He asked.
Henry moved forward to open one. "Well, they're both the same in terms of furniture and size, so just pick whichever one you like best."
Bendy and Boris peeked into the open room and saw that it was of a decent size, around 140 square feet, with a queen sized bed situated under the window located on the wall opposite the door. By one side of the bed was a nightstand with a lamp, and on the other side was a dresser. A small desk and chair stood against the right wall. The left wall had two doors, which Henry pointed out, saying one was a closet, and the other led to a joint bathroom that was between the two guest rooms.
After scoping out the room, Bendy was quick to run inside and inspect it further. He pulled open the drawers on the dresser and desk to see if there was anything inside. All he found were old papers and pencils in the desk and nothing in the dresser. He opened the closet, but quickly shut it when he saw that it was empty. Finally, he pulled himself up onto the bed and began to jump, giving the mattress a springiness test. He seemed satisfied with the results and, after one last leap, let himself fall against the soft blankets.
Bendy made a humming sound before he abruptly sat up. "This will do perfectly!" He decided with a grin.
Henry felt relieved. Watching Bendy search the room made him realize how bare it really was. He intended to fix that. "I'm glad you like it, bud. Tomorrow I can go buy you both some things to brighten it up. Unfortunately, you can't come shopping with me, but I'll be sure to get what you want. For now, let's go eat dinner and head to bed. Tour's over." The man said before pushing away from the doorframe and beaconing the two toons after him.
Bendy grinned and scampered after him, slipping once or twice on the hardwood floor. Boris followed much more sedately, but had a small smile on his face nonetheless.
Soon, the two toons found themselves seated at the island counter as Henry heated up two bowls of leftover stew in the microwave. Bendy watched the contraption with wide, curious pie-cut eyes. Henry could tell the little guy was just bursting with questions about all of the new and unusual things he had never seen before. Such as the LCD tv in the living room, the house phone by the spice rack, and the CD player plugged in at the edge of the island counter against the wall.
Once the stew was done heating up, Henry presented it to the two of them. "Ta-da. I may not be the best cook, but even my culinary inclined sister agrees that my beef stew is pretty good. Sorry you can't have it fresh. I'm much too tired to cook tonight." While Henry spoke, Bendy was busy digging into his food, while Boris poked at his with a spoon.
"You sure it's safe?" Boris asked, giving the microwave a nervous glance. "I-I don't like the look of that doohickey you put it in."
Henry chuckled. "That's a microwave. It uses radio waves to heat up food. It's perfectly safe. Reheated food might not taste as good as freshly made food, it still gets the job done." Henry nudged Boris' bowl closer to the wolf. "C'mon. Eat up. Ah, unless you really don't want to." Henry quickly backpedaled. "I'm not forcing you. If you don't need food to live, then you don't have to eat."
Boris gave Henry a searching look, eyes narrowed. After a few seconds, he seemed to come to a decision and returned his gaze to the bowl. After giving it a few sniffs, the wolf finally began to eat. He seemed to be enjoying it, but he didn't say anything. Henry was pleased anyway.
After dinner, Henry had to carry Bendy up the stairs. The poor little guy had eaten two whole helpings of stew and fell asleep in his third bowl. Boris was also sluggish as he followed Henry across the library. Henry himself was feeling tuckered out, but he wanted to get his two charges to their beds before he even looked at his own.
Boris entered his room on his own, and despite wanting to help him get settled, Henry knew to keep his distance. Instead, he whispered a good night to Boris before his door closed. He didn't know why he felt the need to tuck in the thirty-four year old wolf anyway. He just did. Bendy, however, did need to be tucked in, as he was still fast asleep in Henry's arms, snoring softly.
As quietly as he could, Henry opened the squeaky door to Bendy's room and padded across the plush carpet to the bed. Balancing Bendy against his shoulder with one arm, Henry pulled the blankets back with the other. He lowered the little demon onto the bed and pulled the covers up to Bendy's non-existent neck.
Just as Henry began to straighten up and walk away, a pair of arms wrapped around his neck, keeping him from leaving. Bendy sluggishly cracked open his toonish eyes and gave Henry a little smile.
"Thanks, Hen. For helpin' us," Bendy murmured sleepily, pulling Henry down for a hug.
Henry's lips formed into a tearful smile as he returned the hug, even as his back protested painfully at the awkward angle. "You're welcome, buddy. Good night," He whispered back.
Bendy's arms went slack, and Henry pulled away. The little guy was once again fast asleep. Henry smiled warmly and readjusted the blankets around him before patting his head and turning away. The man walked quietly out of the room, but not without one last glance back at the bed where his dear friend slept.
With a warm feeling in his chest, Henry got ready for bed himself, thinking of all the things he was going to do for the two toons the next day. He wanted to do everything they had missed out on. He wanted to make up for thirty years of lost time. He knew it would be tough, nigh impossible, but he was determined. He would pluck the moon from the sky if that was what it took to make his friends happy.
It was calm that night. The halls were dark, and the only sound was the occasional creak of the old house and the faint chirping of crickets outside. There was one resident that wasn't so serene, however.
Bendy tossed and turned in bed, his whole body shaking, caught in the throes of a nightmare. Finally, he woke in a violent fit, which in turn caused him to get tangled up in the covers. Terrified, he fought against the cocoon of blankets that had been so comforting when he fell asleep, but now trapped and smothered him. Despite being scared out of his mind, Bendy didn't make a sound. He didn't want to wake anyone up. He knew nothing good would come of it. Joey might-
That thought ended when Bendy and the blankets rolled off the bed and hit the floor. The jarring drop dazed the panicking demon for a moment, which was enough for him to realize that something was different. The studio didn't have blankets. Nor did he remember falling asleep on top of something. In fact, he couldn't remember going to sleep.
Bendy once again tried to untangle himself, this time much more calmly. He succeeded and was greeted by the fresh air of his dark room in Henry's house. Not the studio. While that was comforting, the shadowy walls of the room were no longer welcoming. They were cold and confining. He was all alone. He and Boris shared a room back at the studio whenever they had a moment's rest. Or when Joey left for long periods of time, and left them alone in a small locked room, dreading his return just as much as they hated the dark confines.
Bendy whimpered and shook his head quickly, trying to banish those awful thoughts. He didn't feel safe. The room was too big, yet too small at the same time. He had to leave.
The little demon scrambled out of the cocoon of blankets and ran to the door. He opened it as quickly as he could, still trying to be quiet. As soon as his hooves hit the wood floor of the library, however, any attempt at silence was thwarted. Bendy jumped at the sound of his own feet against the wood. The clacks seemed impossibly loud, ringing in his head and making his anxiety shoot through the roof. He was making too much noise. Joey would be there any seco-
Again, Bendy shook his head, tugging at his horns with his hands and curling in on himself, eyes shut tight. "Stop it. I'm not there. I'm with Henry. Henry is safe." As soon as he said that, Bendy let go of his horns and swiveled his head around to look at the door Henry had gestured at, saying it was his and that they were free to come to him if they needed anything.
Bendy moved his tail within reach and wrung it between his hands nervously. Should he go to Henry? He said they could come to him if they needed something. Bendy didn't know what he needed. He just wanted to see Henry. To be reassured that he was safe.
With one final twist of his tail, Bendy let go and began to walk across the wood floor to Henry's room as quietly as he could. He didn't want to wake Boris. He didn't hear a thing, which meant his friend was sleeping soundly. Boris always made noise when he had nightmares, unlike Bendy. If he wasn't having a nightmare, then Bendy didn't want to disrupt him, no matter how much he craved his best buddy's company.
Bendy arrived at Henry's door, and he froze before it, fighting back the urge to twist at his tail again. He was nervous and a little scared, but he just kept reminding himself that Henry was safe. He wouldn't be mad if Bendy woke him, right? Eventually, Bendy lost one internal fight and won the other, and opened the door with his right hand as he clutched his tail with his left.
The room was dark, and didn't smell like old books like the library did, it smelled like mint and coffee. The smell was comforting, somehow. Bendy, feeling a mite braver, stepped over the threshold and realized, to his dismay, that Henry's floor was hardwood, not carpet. Bendy slowly but surely made his way into the room and around the bed he could barely see in the darkness, trying not to make so much noise. He hated having hooves.
Finally, the little creature stopped at the side of the bed, where he could just make out a shape in the blankets. Once again, Bendy's anxiety made an appearance, but he quickly made up his mind before he could back out.
"H-Henry?" Bendy called quietly, reaching up and tapping what he thought was Henry's shoulder under the covers. "Wake up."
It wasn't long before the blanket lump moved, and a familiar head poked out. Henry groggily rubbed his eyes and looked around. "Chrissy? That you?" The man mumbled.
Bendy shuffled his feet, and winced at the noise it made. "N-No, it's me."
Henry was now almost fully awake. He reached out and turned on his bedside lamp before propping himself up on his elbow and looked down at the toon. "Bendy? What's wrong, bud? Do you need something?"
Bendy was relieved that Henry looked concerned and not mad, but the man's question made him pause. Yes. He needed something. What that something was, he didn't know. He just felt that Henry could give it to him, whatever it was. Bendy realized he'd been staring off into space for a while, and was quick to recover and try to answer Henry.
"I... I don't know... I just... I-I couldn't- the dark. I can't stand it. I keep seeing bad things in the dark. I keep thinking of bad things in the dark... I'm not safe alone in the dark." The demon haltingly stuttered, once again unconsciously twisting his tail harshly between his hands. Bendy tried to force out more words, but Henry's hand entering his line of sight made him flinch back and fall silent.
"Hey..." Henry murmured soothingly, "its all right, bud. I get it."
Bendy nervously looked up at the man and saw his warm brown eyes staring back at him, putting him at ease. Henry's hand moved again, drawing gaze. Henry gently tugged at Bendy's tail and the demon slowly unclenched his fists, relinquishing the limb.
"Try not to do that to yourself. It looks like it hurts." Henry said as he let go of the tail before looking back at Bendy, who was busy staring at the floor, cheeks an odd grey color that Henry identified as an embarrassed blush. The man chuckled softly and reached out to tip Bendy's head back up to meet his eyes. "I get it, bud. C'mon. Climb up." Henry shuffled over onto the other side of the bed, leaving a space.
Bendy looked confused. "C-climb up?" He echoed. Then he realized what Henry meant, but only became more confused. "You mean get into the bed? W-why?"
Henry scooted back over so he could see Bendy. "You had a nightmare, right? You're in a place you're not used to, and you don't want to be alone. My niece has night terrors all the time when I babysit her. If she has a particularly bad one, she'll come in here and sleep with me. It seems to help with the nightmares." He explained gently.
Bendy perked up a little. "R-Really? It helps?" He asked, hopeful.
Henry nodded. "It does. When I was little, I would crawl into bed with my parents when I had a bad night. In this very room, too. It sure helped me. Maybe it will help you?" Henry moved back over and patted the space he made. "If this doesn't help, we can try other things. There are a few ways to help with night terrors. We'll find one that works." Henry promised.
Bendy jumped and scrabbled at the blankets to pull himself up onto the bed. Sometimes he hated being so small. Henry had to help him, but he eventually made it. For the second time that night, Henry tucked Bendy into bed. Once he was settled, he reached over and turned off the lamp, plunging the room into darkness. This time, though, it didn't bother Bendy.
'Maybe Henry's on to something.' He thought. Bendy turned into his side, facing Henry, who had his back to the ink creature. "Hey Hen?" He whispered.
"Hm?" Henry grunted in response.
Henry turned a bit so he could face Bendy. "She's my niece. Why?"
Bendy shrugged. "Dunno. You said her name when I woke you up."
"Ah, well she's the niece who has night terrors, so I guess I thought you were her." Henry said before turning away again. "Good night, Bendy."
Bendy was silent for a minute, just staring into the darkness. His thoughts turned to why he came to Henry in the first place. "Hey... Hen?"
Henry didn't turn this time, only grunted to indicate that he was listening.
"We're safe here, aren't we? We'll never have to go back to the workshop?"
Henry rolled over completely to face Bendy, a sad look on his face. "Of course, bud. You'll never have to see that place again if I can help it. You'll stay safe right here with me and Boris. Joey will never hurt you again. I promise." Henry said it with so much conviction that Bendy believed him without a second thought.
The toon smiled wide, a nice warmth blooming in his chest. "Thanks, Henry." He whispered.
Henry smiled back and reached out an arm to pet the top of Bendy's head. "You're welcome, bud. Now, go to sleep. We have a big day tomorrow."
Bendy nodded, yawning as he felt his eyes grow heavy. It didn't take long for both of them to fall asleep. Soon the only sounds were the soft snores of Bendy and the gentle breathing of Henry.
Neither woke to the sound of the door opening. Nor did they notice the weight that settled itself at the end of the bed. A third sound joined them, the snuffling snores of a wolf.
thanks for reading! If you're so inclined, leave a review! Reviews are my lifeblood.