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Like Children

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Rose’s first mistake is in leaving her comically enormous and gaudy tome out in the open, when she knows for a fact that you and Karkat are nearby, prowling the common area for something to scribble dicks onto. Her second mistake is having a comically enormous and gaudy tome to begin with, which is pretty much prime real estate for poorly drawn phalluses. It’s the sprawling downtown penthouse with oceanfront views and free parking of the dick real estate world, as far as being prime goes. 

Rose also makes a third mistake, which is leaving her brand new thick-barreled pen just sitting in the crease of her journal, waiting for someone’s sweaty hands to come grip its shaft and use its delicate head to produce dozens of misshapen penises. It’s basically calling to you, lying against the pages of the book like a young Hollywood starlet draped over a chaise lounge, giving you bedroom eyes between overly sensual sips of a martini, extra dirty and with double olives. 

It becomes apparent immediately upon seeing the book that you absolutely do not possess the self-control or discipline necessary to prevent yourself from fucking with it, so you don’t even bother trying to suppress the urge to begin with. Instead, you pull Karkat by the sleeve of his shirt towards the table and tell him, “We gotta fuck with Rose’s stupid book,” to which he agrees with little fanfare.

“What does she have this thing for anyways?” he asks, situating himself in front of the tome with a little sneer, like he’s afraid it’ll taint him in some way. The stark blank pages stare naively back at the two of you, not yet knowing their fate. 

“I think she’s trying to document our journey or whatever the fuck,” you answer. You grab the pen out of the creases of the pages and tug the cap off, sticking it back on the end for full convenience. “It’s basically a glorified diary that she’s parading around under the guise of it being even remotely useful.” 

“Are we supposed to be reading it?” Karkat asks. “Should I be taking notes on the undoubtedly embellished and confusingly worded entries she’s filled this thing with? Will there be a test?” 

“Dude, it’s our  journey - we don’t need to read it, we’re livin’ in it,” you point out. “And besides, I’m sure she’s put some personal shit in here too and I’m not really in the mood to read about my sister getting dicked down by her alien girlfriend.” 

Karkat grimaces at you and you get a peek at one of his sharp teeth. “Is it at all possible for you to go more than an hour without finding it necessary to once again mention the fact that Rose and Kanaya are, as you so elegantly put it, ‘bumping uglies?’” 

“No,” you answer confidently. “I’ve gotta laugh about it or the awkwardness will consume me. I won’t be able to look her in the eye, dude, we’ll be fighting Lord English and she’ll say ‘hey Dave, can you pass me my magic wand or whatever?’ and I just won’t be able to do it, not with the phallic imagery involved in just the concept of a magic wand. I’ll be scrabbling around trying to hand her magic stick over without looking at her too hard and next thing you know Lord English has skewered me into another dimension and is roasting my body over a spit to consume later.” 

“Ew,” Karkat offers. 

“Exactly,” you say, pointing your pen in his direction. “But if I can endlessly rag on her for it, then it’s fine, you know? ‘Hey Dave pass me that magic wand,’ yeah sure here you go Rose, you know don’t feel bad about the size of your wand, it’s not about the length but about what you do with it, trust me, Kanaya’s a lucky girl. You feel me on this?” 

Karkat nods, “I feel you.” 

“Glad we’re on the same page,” you joke, to which Karkat rolls his eyes. You hand the pen over to him and step to the side so he can get a full view of the pages in front of him. “You do the honors, man.” 

He studies the blank journal for a moment with his lips pursed, a contemplative knuckle pressed to his mouth as if he’s actually considering what to draw. Eventually he picks the top left corner of one of the pages to scribble something onto, scrawling an image in just a few seconds. When he stands up straight again and you get a good look at his drawing, you can’t help the baffled laugh that bursts out of you. 

“Dude, what the hell is that?” you wheeze, hand gripping the front of your shirt as you try to hold in your laughter. 

“It’s one of your absurd human phalluses!” he exclaims indignantly. “They’re your favorite!” 

You ignore the implications in the second part of his comment in favor of pointing at the drawing and telling him, “Man, I dunno what the hell kind of internet porn you’ve been looking at but that is not what a human dick looks like. Trust me.” 

The illustration in question looks more like a cubic representation of what could be a dick, with blocky, crooked balls and an even more rectangular shaft. There are some scribbles around the edges that imply an attempt was made to make the figure appear more circular, but the result is still abnormally angular. 

“Didn’t realize you were the resident expert,” he grumbles unhappily. “I guess all of the dick drawing connoisseurs back on Earth would immediately defer to you for advice on their penis illustrations, right?” 

“Ah, come on,” you whine. “You know they don’t look like that - they’re way more rounded.” 

“Jesus Christ, fine,” he huffs, and draws a second attempt on the other side of the page. When it turns out slightly less rectangular but much more pointy, you let out another startled laugh. 

“Dude, no, are you kidding?” You try to take the pen from him with a comfortable, “Let me show you,” but he tears his hand away from your grasp like a child having a sharp object wrenched away from them by a concerned adult. 

“I can do it myself!” he insists, and demonstrates this fact by producing yet another horribly constructed dick on the page. 

“Nah, you’ve lost your dick privileges,” you say, and also immediately regret. “By which I mean you’ve lost your dick drawing privileges, and you won’t get them back unless you can improve your behavior by the end of the week, then I’ll put your gold star back on the chart and you can pick something out of the prize box. It’s just a bunch of shitty plastic toys from the dollar store and they’re probably a huge choking hazard but they’ll fucking suffice, won’t they.” 

“What the fuck are you talking about?” he demands, voice rising. Sometime in your metaphor, you pressed your fingers into his wrist to stop him from drawing anything else. 

“Here,” you add, covering his hand in your own. His fingers are gripped tightly over the pen so you don’t take it away from him again. “If you wanna do it so bad then you can do it, but I’m gonna be the guiding hand here. Literally.” 

“No,” he starts protesting, but you interrupt him. 

“I’m the expert here, right? If you’re gonna learn how to inscribe a human dick like a pro then you’ve gotta get the help of a pro.” You tighten your grip around his fist. “Gotta feel what it’s like to do this the right way, you know? Gotta get used to the flow of the pen and everything, it’s all in the wrist, man. Let me be the puppeteer pulling the strings of your cock drawing journey, I promise I’ll be gentle.” 

“I don’t want you to pull any of my strings!” he argues, though you’ve already started guiding his hand across the page. “Get your greasy human fingers off of me, Dave, I swear to fuck-”

You shush him in his ear, already satisfied with the warbly, vaguely dick-shaped figure that’s slowly making its way onto the page with your influence. You put your other hand on Karkat’s back under the guise of getting more leverage, at which the next shout trying to scrape out of his mouth suddenly dies down. 

“Patrick Swayze wishes he could see this, dude,” you say lowly, despite knowing that Karkat has no fucking clue who Patrick Swayze is. You barely know who he is. “His shit movie is nothing compared to this, he’s lucky I wasn’t around when it was filmed otherwise he would’ve had a breakdown from all the shame of even being on the same planet as someone with infinitely more talent and potential than him.” 

“What the fuck are you ever talking about?” he asks angrily, though his hand is a little more malleable under yours. “It’s like you’re just stringing random fucking words together and expecting me to decipher them on my own to make any sort of sense out of your consistent and unrelenting word vomit.” 

“Aw, that’s so sweet,” you joke. “Tell me more.” 

“See, what the hell is that?” he asks, maybe to indulge your request. “I need some sort of annotated key or something just to get the gist of even half of what you’re saying. Do you think Rose has compiled some sort of legend in this enormous book of hers? A glossary of your most ridiculous and confusing sentence structures and soliloquies that’s she’s gathered over the years of knowing you? Something I can refer to so that our communication doesn’t consist entirely of you speaking in tongues and waiting for me to reply like you said something normal?” 

“She might actually have something like that,” you muse, arching the trajectory of your joined hands to make more luscious, curved lines. “But it’d be full of psychoanalysis and way too much subtext and it’d also be impenetrably stuffed with confusing words. Just fucking bursting at the seams with four-syllable words and synonyms you didn’t know existed.” 

“Well it must run in the fucking family then because she’s no better than you,” he gripes. “Where in mother grub’s percolating roosting cave did she get such an extensive vocabulary, anyways?” 

“Eh, she wrote a bunch of weird fanfiction as a kid,” you guess. “Probably got onto some inappropriate websites to find more synonyms for ‘pulsating’ or something and it just went from there.” 

You shut up in favor of completing your Sistine Chapel-esque dick masterpiece, which is turning out kinda overcrowded and messy but still obviously spectacular. Karkat stops fighting you for a few minutes and instead comments on the sweatiness of your palm and the concerning speed and accuracy at which you produce phalluses on the page. 

“Years of practice,” you explain. “One day you might be able to get on my level, maybe even surpass me. The student becomes the teacher and all.” 

You can only see the side of Karkat’s face, but you don’t miss the exaggerated way he rolls his eyes. Paired with your proximity to him, it makes the center of your stomach feel warm and thick, like you just gorged yourself on a bunch of maple syrup. You don’t say anything about how your sweaty hand is a direct result of touching him, and instead you finish absolutely destroying the two previously blank pages of Rose’s journal together. 

“See?” you say with a hand out to gesture at the defiled book. “Looks way better now, doesn’t it?” 

“It looks ridiculous,” Karkat says, but it’s with a small smile and a laugh in his throat. “And obscene.” 

“That’s a perfect title, ‘ridiculous and obscene.’” You scribble the words onto the top of the page and then sign below it, handing off the pen to Karkat so he can do the same. His signature is as blocky and scraggly as everything else he writes, and he turns to you with a genuine grin at the end result of your fucking around. 

“This was stupid,” he admits with a hardly suppressed chuckle. “Can’t believe we wasted thirty minutes doing this shit.” 

“Yeah,” you say, with a small giggle of your own. You feel like a preschooler doing something you definitely shouldn’t be doing, and it’s only funny because you might get in trouble. “Now that you’ve improved your skills, we can fuck up even more of this thing in record time. If you want.” 

Karkat thinks for a moment and then says, “Let me get a second pen.” 

The two of you spend far too long engaging in what is probably the most immature activity possible, putting cocks all over a few more random blank pages in the book. Karkat gets increasingly more confident in his abilities, which leads to increasingly ridiculous drawings including dicks that are swordfighting, dicks riding horses, and dicks disguised as other vaguely phallic objects The result is an immaculate paragon of artistry, probably your best work; your style has meshed well with Karkat’s, and in the end you think it rivals even some of your SBaHJ comics. 

Over the course of your tomfoolery, the two of you get more and more noticeably giggly about it, until you’re just barely holding in howls of laughter from the few other people milling around in the common room. By the time Rose comes by and asks you if you’re done acting like children, you’re both pink cheeked and teary eyed over the absolute mirth that comes from scribbling dicks in places they shouldn’t be. 

You abscond to Karkat’s room with hoarse voices and tears on your cheeks, where you indulge in finally letting your laughter escape in full force, falling all over each other in delight. Karkat wipes the moisture off your face and makes fun of how pink you humans get when experiencing emotion, and then you make fun of him for having a wheezy laugh, and then the two of you spend the rest of the day dizzy with the joy of doing something stupid, and the joy of doing it together.