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Secret Santa for Spoo! (Mystery Skulls, Arthur)


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Happy super late holidays, Spoo! Honestly, I think my heart kind of did a back flip when I found out I was going to be your SS this year, and I apologize IMMENSELY for the delay in posting. And although I'm still fairly wet behind the ears when it comes to the Mystery Skulls fandom, I couldn't help but try my hand at a fic that you could hopefully enjoy. Plus I fell in love with scaredy cat Arthur and just.. Ffff okay, before I start rambling, this is only part one, and I hope to get part two up in the next coming weeks. Hope you enjoy darling!!! cheekkiss.gif <3


"You're gonna do it again,"


"I can see your nose twitching! It's kind of adorable but also painful to watch,"

"Who said you had to watch me? I'd prefer ihh-if you didn-"

"See! Right there, don't you hear it too, Lew?"

The driver in question heaved a steady exhale, lavender hues flicking over to catch a glimpse of Arthur's slightly zoned out expression. "You really shouldn't hold them back, man, you know it always just builds up and builds up, until.."

"Lewis, I--.. heh!hh'ZNGT!-uh.. hHZNGkt'uhh.."

"Yeah, until that,"

Giving the rosy pink appendage a rough swipe, Arthur slumped down in the back, avoiding Vivian's more than likely 'I told you so,' look. Though her actual expression was bathed in worry, and more than a little guilt for egging her friend as she had. Loathe as he was to admit ever feeling even remotely out of it, the symptoms were obvious, now glaring in the pale-faced, clammy, cranky ball curled up on the van's back seat.

Suppressing a sigh, Vivian turns in her seat, moving back to seat herself across from Arthur. Who is still adamantly avoiding her gaze, she notes silently.

"Artie? C'mon, at least look at me. I'm gonna start thinking you really do hate me one of these days," That's enough to get his eyes widened, uncurling a bit to straight.

"Don't say stuff like that, Viv.. I get that you're trying to, do whatever it is that your minds telling you is right but, Jeez," A hand comes up to rub at the back of his neck, "Y'know I could never hate you.. But I'm fine,"

Vivian's lips, once parted briefly in question, pressed together firm, her own gaze lowering to the quietly observing Mystery coiled up by Arthur's side. Of course he wouldn't admit it outright. Even so, Vivian was pretty sure he knew both herself and Lewis were aware this wasn't just some random sneezing and sniffling. She wonders why he insisted on stating otherwise; as if he could stop the illness by just denying it's existence over and over? Maybe he did. If only she were a selective mind reader.

"If you say so. But it's okay not to be fine; I know, that's starting to sound like my catchphrase," her gaze softened, a hand coming to rest on his knee, "Doesn't it make it any less true. Okay?"

Swallowing, Arthur tried to ignore how soothing the warmth of her hand felt, simply nodding and mustering up a tight half smile. Although not looking completely satisfied, Vivian mirrored the expression before moving back to her seat.

It's not like he could ever pull the wool over his own eyes. He was sick as a damn waterlogged rat; everything ached, and his body was constantly torn between stifling heat and bone chilling cold. He hated the idea of something invading his body, weakening it, sending him into spasms of sneezing and coughing. The idea that something so microscopic could knock him down was even more frightening than an actual physical confrontation.

Still, his friends have never shared the heightened anxiety, though they tried their best to understand, he knows. It's not like they can reach into his mind and pull out every single thought to examine. And for that, he was immensely thankful. Paranoia mixed with bubbling emotions and self loathing couldn't be a pretty sight.

"hiHGSHHh-nn.." Arthur wanted to cringe at the pitiful whimper he failed at staving off, only curling further into himself and muttering a hoarse 'Thanks' at the conjoined blessing from the front.

He didn't have to raise his gaze to know Vivian's brow was furrowed at him with concern, or notice Lewis' gaze flickering more often into the rear view mirror. And it made his stomach near lurch at the thought of that shared glance between them, a silent question of 'Is he going to be alright?' or 'Gosh, he sounds even worse than before'. Like he's a pathetic little child who has to be fussed over. Okay, maybe the petulant behavior and pouting doesn't help, but he still wanted to salvage a sliver of pride.

"Hey, finally! Thought we'd never see a vacant sign," Vivian's voice breaks through Arthur's train of thought. Sure enough, the neon green reflects like a Gatsby type beacon in the evening as Lewis pulls into the parking lot.

A hot shower, warm bed and soft towels to bury his sore face into? Screw pride. He wanted to weep.


With an afternoon full chock full of embarrassment, self loathing and either constant sneezing or the need to sneeze, Arthur relented to his sickly state. Just because he couldn't attain sleep last night didn't mean he shouldn't try again. Not like he had much energy for anything else. Despite Lewis and Viv's constant protests, he'd finally managed to sway the two of them into taking the van in search of sustenance. Of course take out had been an option, but Arthur argued that everything would only upset his stomach further - if they wanted to play nurse, he could at least indulge them with some realistic standards, right? In the end, he'd just been subconsciously pleading for them to leave him alone, if only a few minutes. It was no offense to either Lewis or Vivian, who was the most difficult to persuade. Built in mothering instincts were a bitch to work around.

But the alone time was, if anything, giving Arthur a few moments to let the wall of passive indifference to crumble.

Tugging the extra blanket Vivian had insisted upon draping over him to his chin, he resisted the urge to burrow down into the motel bed. He couldn't lay down now, not with.. all this gunk inside of him. Once he'd reached the bathroom, hand sliding down the wall before bumping over the light switch. He hesitated, already dreading the process of even looking at himself - or whatever was spared from this virus, but eventually flicked it on.

And that was the first mistake. The pale fluorescence nearly blinded him, and as his eyes began to prickle so did his sinuses, spiking the deeply embedded tickle that had lain dormant the past few minutes. "Oh y-you've gotta be k-kihhihh!-!" Nearly whimpering in anticipation, Arthur ripped a bundle of tissue from the dispenser, nestling his poor, wriggling nose into the pile as his breath see-sawed.


Why did they always linger like this? It was maddening, not to mention extremely embarrassing, having to sit hunched over while his nose held him in throws of ridiculous gasping and groaning with it's indecisiveness. "-iiihhh.. hiihh?.. d-damb id.." Slamming his eyes shut, he raised his index finger to the side of the shivering appendix, lightly grazing down across the irritated flesh. The stretch of skin seemed to spark, gradually igniting his sinuses until the sneeze finally burst forth in a sharp, fire-cracker fit.

"hhH'GSHHh'ue! ihh'GSHHHuh! heh-GTCHSHUuh!"

A break, the tickle fluttering just near the tip of his nose, knuckles turned stark white as they gripped the sink basin, before he was thrown forward by a final, heavy,


The spent, languid moan that rolled up from Arthur's throat signified he'd been released from the grips of sneezing for the time being. Still, relief was miles away. His throat felt rubbed raw, each thick, spraying expulsion like a cheese grater to the tender lining of his throat.

A flash of red and black flickered in the edge of his murky vision, and he pressed the nest of tissues tighter under the curve of his chapped nose. "Let be guess.. I shouldn'dt have sedt theb away, right? Id's all id by head.. ad they odly wadn't to help so, I should've just sucked it ub and led theb play house od be, righdt?"

Blinking back tears, Arthur turned his gaze to receive some kind of reaffirmation from the canine; a bow of the head or a sage narrowing of the eyes. But when he only got a soft, sympathetic whimper in response, he could only heave a croaky sigh. He couldn't project the words onto Mystery, knowing that they weren't anyone else's but his own.

A splash of water to the face and taking a washcloth to the sweat-slicked skin, paying tentative attention to the sore, tender areas around his nose and eyes, Arthur was at least mildly satisfied. At least he'd taken away the complete phantom appearance and now just looked as though he'd suffered a minor allergic episode. He raised an eyebrow to Mystery, "Well? Damage codtrol effective?" An emphatic bark caused a weary smile to stretch across his lips, fingers running through the tuft of thick hair atop Mystery's head gratefully.

"What would I do without you, huh?" Probably lose whatever was left of his mind.

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This is beautifully written! You do great work on character interactions :) Please tell me you've got more writing on the board! I'd love to see your other works!

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Spoo: HNNNNGGGGG I AM SO SO SO! glad you like it dear! :D that whole audio had me grinning like a dope for the rest of my evening, I swear, that's the sweetest thing ever. And yesss all the poor sick, anxious, feeling bad Arthur angst gimmegimme *drools* Seriously, I'm so glad I you like it, you're the best~ hopefully you'll part two just as much! hug.gif

SneezingCosmos: Ohmygosh thanks! Guh honestly my writing fluctuates between 'Hey that's actually good' to 'Was I half asleep writing this' xD But yeah, there might be some old stuff floating around idek?? I'm so flattered I might cry

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