"I'm not saying the Black Death was a good thing, it was horrible. I'm just saying the Fraggles could benefit from something like it"
Daniel gave Soren a sideways glance. It was the third time this month Soren had expressed an interest in genocide. It was a very average number for him, but Daniel took note anyway, just in case Soren some day decided to raise to power and become a dictator. Daniel had no idea what he'd do then, but at least he'd see it coming.
Suddenly without warning Soren turned down a dark alley. Daniel stopped dead in his tracks.
"You're sure that's a good idea?"
Soren looked puzzled "It's a shortcut"
"Through a death trap!"
"Come on Daniel" Soren smiled "I know a mix of five martial arts that I invented myself, I call it Flying Bowie, and you're a big strong guy. Nobody's going to mess with us"
"I don't think I can actually fight anyone though" Daniel said.
"And you won't have to if you just straighten your back and lift your head a bit. Look confident" Soren said, padding Daniel on the back which made him tense up and jerk away from the touch out of old habit. Soren either didn't notice or had gotten used to it. He just smiled and continued down the alley. Already starting to sweat, Daniel followed him.
The alleyway was the most terrifying thing Daniel had ever seen. It was the sort of place vampires found a snack, and serial killers made themselves more prolific. He walked as close to Soren as his own social anxiety would allow, casting nervous glances over his shoulder. If a deranged murderer wasn't going to kill them, surely a bite from the rats running along the wall would.
He was so busy looking behind them he didn't see Soren stopping and walked straight into his back. "Sorry, I- !!"
Soren didn't move. In front of them stood three guys, all wearing black.
"Stay behind me" Soren said, his tone firm. He seemed to get into some sort of pose, almost like he was both brazing himself and getting ready to attack. Daniel grabbed his shirt.
"Let's go back" he said with an onset of panic in his voice, but Soren didn't move.
"We can't. Let go of me"
Daniel just pulled at his clothes harder "Soren!"
A firm pull made Soren stumble sideways and suddenly everybody were moving. Daniel saw the men running towards them just as he felt Soren push against his chest with more force than seemed humanly possible. It sent waves through his body, like a deep hollow ring, he lost his balance, tripped over his own legs, fell, and landed in tall grass.
Everything went quiet.
Over his head soft pink and yellow clouds drifted by against a pale blue sky. White flowers swayed gently around his face in the wind. Somewhere birds were singing. For a second he wondered if he had died when he felt an insect crawl over his hand.
Daniel jumped up, shaking his arm violently and spinning around himself. At least it was now confirmed he hadn't gone to Heaven. There would be no insects in his paradise.
When he finally calmed down he looked up and let out a gasp. He was standing in a small clearing by a rocky edge with a perfect view of huge mountains as far as the eye could see. They too were a soft shade of pink, colored by the sunset.
He could feel a panic attack coming on.
Where was he?! What happened?! He fell, so was he in a coma?! Was he going to be okay?! Unless he woke up in five minutes he was going to get brain damage!
"Um, hi Dan"
He spun around and was met by Soren standing between the trees, looking a bit confused and with a bleeding wound over his left eyebrow.
"Soren?" Dan looked at the wound "What happened?"
"Nothing. How long have you been here?"
"I don't know. I don't even know where we are"
Soren walked around him, looking him up and down, then nodded in relief "You're okay"
Daniel was about to say he was probably in a coma and in need of medical attention, when something made him stop. Soren against those mountains seemed so familiar...
"This is where you grew up!" he blurted out.
Soren didn't say anything.
"It is!" Daniel continued "I remember now, from when we visited your parents. This is your childhood home" He looked around like he was seeing it for the first time "Why are we here?"
Soren suddenly straightened his back and put on his most serious voice "You're dreaming"
"Actually, I was about to say I think I'm in a coma. I'm probably already a vegetable..."
"No" Soren said, stepping closer "You just hit your head and passed out"
"Well, that's basically what a coma is-"
"You're fine. Right now I'm driving you home. That's why you're dreaming about me and this place"
Soren looked so serious, and it was like a cold reality shower. The wind was chilly against his skin and Daniel could still feel a lingering hunger. He didn't feel like he was dreaming at all.
"I don't think I'm dreaming..."
"You are!" Soren insisted, pressed his palm against Daniel's forehead and with a jerk Dan woke up in his own bed.
Early afternoon sun flooded in through the window, meaning he hadn't put himself to bed. He would have drawn the curtains. On his nightstand stood a glass of water with a note besides it.
'Call me when you wake up. - Soren'
He rubbed his head. If he had knocked himself out on the pavement he expected to at least have a headache, but he was fine. It was like none of it had ever happened. Not even the walk down the alley. How long had he been passed out? It was highly irresponsible of Soren to just take him home instead of to a hospital. Maybe he didn't feel any pain because something had been damaged beyond repair!
He picked up the glass of water but didn't drink any. Who knew how long it had been standing there. Instead he went into the kitchen and poured himself a new glass while debating if he should call the hospital or Soren first.
Soren knew he was doing some borderline Edward Cullen shit right now, but he wasn't spying on Dan through the window to look at his sleeping face or whatever. He just wanted to make sure he woke up okay.
This wasn't good. He messed up big time, Soren knew that, and now he could only hope Dan believed the whole 'passed out' story. He really didn't want to have to erase Dan's memory. Soren just wanted Dan to be safe, and in the panic of the moment he must have accidentally teleported him to his own safe spot back in the mountains, though Soren wasn't sure when. It was all a bit of a blur.
He poked at the wound over his eye. Those assholes were getting too cocky. Before long they'd try and get to him at the diner and then who knew where he might send everybody?
Michael would probably end up in a volcano. By accident, of course.