Title: The Strange Attraction Syndrome - Chapter Fourteen
Summary: Ten years is a long time to have an unrequited crush, but Tweek’s wait is just about over. So much for Craig being asexual.
Point of View: Craig
Then, I turned around and walked to my room and closed my door and put my head under my pillow and let the quiet put things where they are supposed to be.
—The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Currently, I was intoxicated, scribbling mass images of one thing.
The past couple of days had been like those drab paper towels. The kind without any imprints or colors or cute little designs. They were thin too so you’d have to use like, five. And then by the next day all of them were used up, lost somewhere in the trashcan, and you’re stuck with wet hands. I hate wet hands without any paper towels. It just really put a damper on my mood. That’s what every day has been leaving me with.
In all of my classes I just sit there. A few of them I don’t even attend. I knew what was wrong, but it hasn’t happened in such a long time that I’ve been trying to pass it off as something else. Something curable. My professors started noticing and I like to remain as inconspicuous as possible so I just stopped showing up. I’ll return with a bunch of make up work and then everything will be fine, but until then, things were going to suck. I mean, I could handle boring. I made love to boring. But when things sucked, they just fucking sucked.
My classes weren’t doing anything for me, anyways. Whenever a model came in I spent too much time trying to concentrate on concentrating rather than concentrating on turning their features into paper and colored lines. I’d have to draw them incredibly slow just to keep myself from dropping the corners of their lips or enlarging their eyes. I wanted to give everyone that saddened glint to the light reflecting from their pupils because that was the only way I’d been able to draw Tweek.
I couldn’t even doodle in my sketchbooks without stopping abruptly because it just wasn’t working out. Even painting couldn’t harness my inspiration, and I loved painting Clyde and his girlfriend together with their identical rosy cheeks. My artistic frustration was so obvious that Token offered to let me hide his camera so both of us could sit there like retards wondering why our imagination was just dead. His offer was characteristically generous, but I didn’t want anyone to be stuck on my boat. Not that this was some fatal, catastrophic disaster because, like I said, this just flat out sucked. I’d come out of my rut soon. I could feel it all coming back to me now that my artistic paralysis had had the pleasure of corrupting me for a few days.
It was better just to stay at home until I got over this sickness of sorts. That’s why I decided to speed up the process by throwing down shots with the lady—it just so happened that she didn’t have school today—because when I was drunk, I had no concept of time.
"Alcohol shouldn’t taste so delicious," she grumbled, refilling our shot glasses with vanilla flavored vodka. She wasn’t wrong. Upon first impact with your tastebuds, there was that rancid splash of you-are-not-going-into-my-mouth―and then it was gone, consumed by a vanilla aftertaste. She didn’t even need a chaser and she was the type who never drank without one.
"Tweek shouldn’t be so goddamn hard to get rid of," I added, sitting up so I could throw back my shot before returning into a slump with my sketchbook open and ready to eat up my pencils. The doodle I was working on was almost complete. I just needed to go in and shade Tweek’s lips, thicken his eyelashes, give his cheeks some color, and wish that at least his stupid eyeballs were here so that I could paint the color of them. My hands were itching to paint him, but I wanted to do him justice and I couldn’t do that when he wasn’t present. Fucking South Park had to swallow him whole again, and I didn’t know when he’d be back.
Pretty Lady wiggled her way to my side, head resting against my shoulder to spy on what I was working on. “This is all you’ve been doing lately?” She was looking at the page that held Tweek’s face, a few variations of his eyes, and one small Julibob in the corner. I almost felt embarrassment when she took it away from me and flipped through the previous pages because this sketchbook was new and a good chunk of it was already filled with repeated images of Tweek. Kenny appeared every now and then with his charismatic smile or shit-eating grin, but it was obvious that the majority didn’t belong to him.
"Pretty much," I admitted, stealing my sketchbook back so that I could finish my doodle. It aggravated me when I left Tweek undone. He needed to be completed otherwise I couldn’t sleep. I’d stayed up a night or two just so that I could tell myself he was done and didn’t have any broken ends. Maybe it was a subconscious thing, like he was so haphazardly put together in reality that I absolutely had to bring him together on paper. Whatever it was, it was really screwing me over.
"Why do you draw him so much?" She asked, watching as I darkened his upper lip with a precision that, although quick, was treaded carefully.
"He’s different. The people I’m assigned in class are either generic or ugly. I want something else so I guess that’s Tweek." Something else was about as accurate as I could get when it came to the blonde. I couldn’t see him as the kid I’d practically grown up with, lived in the same town with, went to the same school with. This was someone new to me.
"But you never thought about drawing him before? Like back when you lived in South Park?"
I shook my head, pigmenting his cheeks to give them a blush effect. “He was nothing that entire time.”
"You knew who he was, though?" This time I nodded. "What changed?"
"Like I know," I snorted. "I didn’t want to build up my ability to draw in South Park so I tried not to be as creative as possible. His friend, Thomas, has Tourettes and he’s pretty much the coolest person ever."
The brunette girl laughed at my random piece of information. It wasn’t until I flipped to a new page and began scrawling for a numerous time the now familiar shapes and angles of Tweek’s features that she spoke up. “I think he’s really cute.”
My hand never once stilled as I responded. I didn’t even have to think about him for my pencils to execute him perfectly. Instead, I focused on my words. “Go for it. I suggest staying with Clyde, though. Tweek is a little gay.” Again, she laughed. We all knew that he wasn’t just “a little” gay.
"Don’t you think so too?" Pretty Lady picked up one of my pencils with led of a darker color, twiddling it around between her fingers.
"He’s cute," I agreed. I might not have found people appealing, but I knew when someone was attractive.
"Was he a good kisser?" The memory from a few days prior resurfaced. It was a bit muddled, attempting to push through the growing smog of intoxication that had taken to clouding my head. Tweek’s mouth had been soft and warm, but everyone’s usually was. There hadn’t been tongue or teeth or spit so I couldn’t really pass any judgement. A kiss was a kiss, although for the girl’s sake, I would comply.
"Sure," she repeated, unsatisfied. "Well, I think you blew his mind."
"Craig Tucker usually does." The point of my pencil found the underside of my neck. "I’m being serious. Take your boyfriend for example. He swoons every time I look at him."
Pretty Lady pouted, mumbling, “You’re right.”
"Craig Tucker usually is." She stabbed me a second time.
Sometime between then and there I’d passed out. It could’ve been the alcohol or maybe I’d just drifted off after zoning out during my moment of intense doodling. Either way, I woke up to Token positioning the Julibeagles on the couch with me, his camera hanging loosely from his neck. “What are you doing?” I grumbled, tightening the muscles in my stomach when Julibee stepped on it.
Token whistled and snapped his fingers, raising his hand high into the air. The beagles watched and sat down as he instructed them to. “I’ve got a few words that I need to photograph, but I can’t use the actual words, you know? You’re my picture of ‘lethargy’.”
"Oh." He positioned his camera in front of his face. "Should I do anything?"
"Yeah. Why don’t you get up and quit being lethargic?" With his finger hovering over the capture button, he added, "No, I don’t want you to do anything. Just resume sleeping."
"I wasn’t sleeping." But then I yawned, and I had to cover my mouth so that Token didn’t get some disgusting picture of me with a double chin.
"No? You were just practicing your snoring?" Token then did this thing where he got up onto the table or crouched down low or moved to either side of the couch where he got me snoozing from every angle.
"I was snoring?" I asked, bending my leg until my knee stuck up. "I only snore when I nap." That was actually false, though. I had no fucking clue when the hell I snored.
Lowering his camera, my friend took a step forward and sat himself down on the couch. The dogs took this as a greeting and unanimously rose to return Token’s imagined gesture. One of their tails smacked me in the face before they left. I took this as a sign that I was meant to stay put, so I did.
"The vodka was out when I came home. Don’t tell me you dropped out of college so you could be a drunk."
"Clyde’s woman was home today. The vodka kept us company." There was some wooziness in my head still remaining, something that I figured would return full blast when I sat up. "I guess she left me."
"She went to go have dinner with Clyde. She also warned me that you’re in some type of funk and that I should take care of it. So what’s bothering you?"
I threw an arm over my eyes and felt around the couch with the other. My creativity was nagging at me, pounding at the base of my skull. When my searching fingers found my sketchbook, the knocking ebbed away. “I have been in a funk,” I stated, collecting as many pencils as I could find, blind as I was. “It’s all coming back to me, though. I can even draw again.”
Another pencil hit my side, one of which I figured Token must’ve thrown to me. “You sure about that?”
The Lady must’ve told him that all I could really draw was Tweek. At least it was something. “Sort of.” Removing my arm from my face, I made to situate my sketchbook before me in much the same position it’s been in since I’d woken up this morning. And then I saw that Clyde’s woman had drawn a picture of what looked like herself killing me in my sleep on one of the pages. I found it kind of funny that the image of me was happy. That’s when I noticed that there was a dream bubble growing in size above my stick figure head, and it must’ve been the alcohol, because I started laughing when I saw that she’d put Tweek inside of it. Before my murder, I’d been dreaming of him.
"Can I see that?" Token asked, referring to my sketchbook. I handed it over and idly surveyed him as he flipped through the pages. Part of me thought that it must’ve looked creepy, all of these identical faces that belonged to Tweek. But I had folders and sketchpads and throngs of paper filled with nothing but Stripe and that never came across as creepy, so why would this? Art was a compulsion for me, specifically when it came to something I very much so liked. It used to be that every time I thought about Stripe, I had to draw him. The same was happening with Tweek and I didn’t know why that was.
There were just things that I favored and I couldn’t stop myself from indulging in them in the only way that I knew how. Unfortunately, Tweek wasn’t that simple. I liked to touch things, to literally get a feel for what I was drawing. Skin, texture, bones—if I could feel it, I could turn it into one-dimension. Stripe had always been at my disposal for that; Tweek was not. “He looks sad in all of them,” Token observed. That was my constant when it came to the blonde. It was the only emotion I could associate with him.
"That was the only thing he wore when I drew him. It’s just kind of stuck now." Which was why I needed him to come back. I wanted to see the difference in his eyes when he felt other things. He would interest me no matter what, and yet that was all I’d been given. Spending so much time on this one emotion had me picking it apart and I was getting lost, circling back around only to end up at that same forlorn feeling, even when I tried to imagine him with something else in his eyes. I needed to see it and know that he was capable of it to be able to repeat it.
"Kenny will find a way to get him back down here." My brows knit together. Was he trying to reassure me? "Don’t look at me like that, dude." He laughed, tossing me my sketchbook. It landed in my lap, folded over on a page I’d worked on a day or two ago. I’d tried to replicate Tweek’s eye color. The failure was mocking me now, a shade too dark.
I ripped it out, not caring what was on the other side of the paper, crumpled it up until I couldn’t see his false eyes anymore, tossed it, and buried my head in the couch.