The Hypochondriac Strikes Again
The Hypochondriac Strikes Again
Starring the Les Amis Boys
Disclaimer: I am Victor Hugo reincarnate, so all these boys belong to me! ((evil laughter))
Okay, not really. The real disclaimer is as follows: I am obviously not Victor Hugo, never was, and I’ll put the boys back exactly as I found them when I’m done. Ya hear that, guys?
Les Amis boys: ((wide-eyed terror))
Well, perhaps not exactly as I found them (some piddling detail about mental impact) but they’ll be a lot more interesting conversation companions. Anyway, after this long and apparently pointless disclaimer, go ahead and read the story.
Café Musain. The Les Amis boys were all present for this impromptu meeting--actually only Enjolras, who was thinking incredible revolutionary thoughts, was holding a meeting. Grantaire slumped dead-drunk over a corner table, clutching a bottle of half-empty wine in his left hand as he snoozed away his most recent alcoholic debauch. Bossuet, Bahorel, Courfeyrac, and Feuilly played cards at another table and cheerfully depleted Bossuet’s pockets of money. Jean Prouvaire had been playing cards too but something about the sad state of Bossuet’s gambling abilities gave him poetic inspiration, so he was scribbling something on a piece of paper held against the back of his chair. Combeferre stared dreamily off into space, quite possible on the verge of discovering the meaning of some impossible philosophical question. Joly sat some distance from the others as he was nursing the tail end of a cold and didn’t want anyone to catch it.
Enjolras looked up from his exciting thoughts and, seeming disappointed to find himself in the boring café room, appeared to come to a decision. He stood up, struck a dramatic pose, and droned, “Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country--”
Jehan, still scribbling furiously, commented, “Someone already said that.”
Combeferre shook off his brown study and reminded Jehan, “It’s the thought that counts.”
Enjolras stopped in the middle of his famous ‘Enjy Glare of Doom’ and caught it in mid-flight towards unsuspecting Jehan. “Thank you, Combeferre,” he said. To Jehan he growled, “That wasn’t exactly an attempt to be original. I am trying to get everyone’s ATTENTION!” He bellowed the last word in an attempt to catch the current object of desire.
Everyone continued doing exactly what he had been doing before Enjolras strained his voice by bellowing.
Bossuet glanced up. “Did you guys hear something?”
Bahorel looked up as well. “I thought I did--it probably isn’t too important.” He reached into his pocket, drew out a green hard candy, and popped it into his mouth.
Enjolras’ face turned an interesting shade of crimson as he struggled to control his temper; the general appearance seemed to be that of bursting a blood vessel.
Joly watched Enjolras with trepidation as he rubbed the end of his nose on the sleeve of his jacket. “Better be careful, Enjolras, you’ll burst a blood vessel--”
Something hilarious seemed to break out at the card table. Bahorel threw his head back and roared with laughter as Bossuet’s good temper seemed to be tested. At this time
Bahorel’s tongue had turned an nice vivid shade of green due to the hard candy in his mouth. Joly glanced over at the uproar, caught a glimpse of the green, and panicked.
“Bahorel! Your tongue! It’s awful!” Joly squealed in dismay and made a beeline towards Bahorel.
Blissfully unaware of his imminent doom, Bahorel lay down his hand of cards. “I have kings and aces--”
“That should be tyrants and revolutionaries,” Enjolras grumbled.
“Whatever,” Bahorel muttered while rolling his eyes.
Joly barreled into Bahorel and shrieked, “You’ve got this terrible disease! Have you been feeling ill? Headache? Fever??”
“What the--” Bahorel sputtered. The piece of candy, jostled around due to the spastic Joly, lodged itself in Bahorel’s throat and starting choking him.
“Oh no!” Joly yelled excitedly. “That’s the final sign! When they start choking, it’s all over--speak to me Bahorel!” He grabbed the man’s collar and shook him.
Bahorel rolled his eyes dramatically and made odd noises while gesturing frantically.
The rest of the Amis boys had watched this interesting display unfold with a sense of shock, mirth, and overall trepidation. Finally Courfeyrac snapped out of the alarm and shoved Joly out of the way. “Move!” he bellowed and struck Bahorel several times in the back. The little green candy shot out of the loafer’s mouth and across the room; Bahorel began wheezing in great draughts of air.
Joly twisted his fingers in his hair in horror. “Now he’s coughing up his organs!”
Bahorel recovered a little and gasped, “Shut up, you little twerp!”
Joly shut up.
Enjolras watched the end of the recent drama with seeming detachment and drawled, “Now that we know you’re alive I call this meeting to order.”
Everyone ignored Enjolras.
Bossuet tried to wipe a grin off his face as he muttered, “And I thought I had bad luck…”
Joly stammered, “But-but your tongue! It’s that nasty green color--”
Bahorel slammed his face into his palm. “You idiot--” He rummaged around in his pocket and pulled out another green candy. Joly stared at it blankly. Bahorel said, very slowly and deliberately, “I…was…eating…this…candy…you…moron!”
“Ohhh,” Joly said. “Well, it could have been a deadly disease--” He caught the death glare Bahorel was directing at him and made his best attempt at a disarming smile. “I don’t suppose sorry will cut it?” he squeaked.
Outside the Café Musain, several pedestrians dodged as a smallish young man flew out of the front door. He picked himself up, brushing the dust off his coat; two black eyes and a cut lip graced his thin face. After ridding his coat of the majority of its dust he said loudly to anyone who would listen, “Don’t eat candy! Or hang out with people who eat candy! It’s bad for your health!” He continued down the street proclaiming his newfound knowledge.
One of the pedestrians who had dodged Joly’s short flight watched the young man totter down the street and shook his head. “Those boys get crazier every day--I wouldn’t be surprised if they haul off and have a revolution one of these days.” He shook his head again and walked away.
Take me home!
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