Then Okay – Chapter 1 – eightatleast – Video Blogging RPF [Archive of Our Own]

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I love and admire both Dream and George immensely and I would hate for my work (or anyone else’s work) to become fodder to attack them with. As much as they say they like or are flattered by fanfiction/fanart, there is a line that should not be crossed.

Try to separate the character from the person. It is fun to imagine. It is not fun to bully.

My work, and ideally, all other works of fanart and fanfiction, are meant to entertain.

With this in mind, not everything in this story will be accurate. A lot of it is not. This is a work of fiction, and the artistic liberties I take will serve to separate reality from fiction. Further, this work will take place in an Alternate Universe — hence, fiction. I hope this will remind you, the reader, that my work is not meant to speculate, investigate, or imply anything about anyone’s personal life.

Disclaimer:Shipping real people is delicate and dangerous. I am not writing this story with the intention of forcing a relationship on two good friends. I do not condone harassment of the subjects of this story, or prying into their personal lives.

I love and admire both Dream and George immensely and I would hate for my work (or anyone else’s work) to become fodder to attack them with. As much as they say they like or are flattered by fanfiction/fanart, there is a line that should not be crossed.

Try to separate the character from the person. It is fun to imagine. It is not fun to bully.

My work, and ideally, all other works of fanart and fanfiction, are meant to entertain.

With this in mind, not everything in this story will be accurate. A lot of it is not. This is a work of fiction, and the artistic liberties I take will serve to separate reality from fiction. Further, this work will take place in an Alternate Universe — hence, fiction. I hope this will remind you, the reader, that my work is not meant to speculate, investigate, or imply anything about anyone’s personal life.

Disclaimer:Shipping real people is delicate and dangerous. I am not writing this story with the intention of forcing a relationship on two good friends. I do not condone harassment of the subjects of this story, or prying into their personal lives.

They sat on flimsy plastic chairs, the rubber bottoms sinking into the hot August mud, as wasps buzzed by the lemonade dispenser and an old man rattled into a microphone up on the platform. Clay was fiddling with his paper cup, unfolding the rim, only half paying attention to the empty promises the dean was making about his, and every other bored freshman’s next four years. A little pessimistic? Maybe. But Clay really only committed so he could move out — a boring little school in New York, as far away from home as money would allow.

His dad snatched the cup away. “Pay attention,” he whispered sternly.

It felt like hours before his mom was finally wiping away her tears as they stood at the entrance of Clay’s dorm building, his dad tapping his foot. “I know this will be tough, but we all have to be strong,” she said. “Call me every night, okay?”

They exchanged their hugs and she went, sniffling, to the car. Clay’s dad gave a sniff and a nod, and followed suit. Clay waited at the door, waving until the car turned around the bend, watching until it pulled out onto the road, then swiped his ID card and danced into the hallway. Freedom at last!

His parents had taken so long touring the campus and organizing his room that all the other students were in their beds already. Well, at least it seemed that way since the hallway was eerily quiet and empty, a drastic difference from the move-in bustle in the morning. Clay pulled out his phone to check the time: 8pm! He was too busy gawking at the screen to notice the figure coming out of their room and collided head first with a giant cardboard box.

The figure didn’t seem to notice either, as they lost their grip and the box and its contents tumbled to the floor.

“Shit, I’m so sorry!” Clay said, bending down to help pick up the mess.

“You’re fine, I wasn’t watching,” the figure said with an accent. Clay looked up, surprised at the foreign accent to see a flustered freshman, dark haired and red in the face.

“It was totally my fault,” Clay retorted, grabbing a handful of pencils and putting them back in the box. The boy met his eye and smiled.

“No, I’m pretty sure I was the one with a box in front of my face,” he threw back.

“Yeah, well I was the one dancing through the hallway,” Clay added with a smirk.

The boy chuckled. “You were dancing through the hallway?”

“No, but I might as well have been.”

They looked down at the box all filled up again, then back at each other.

“So I’m guessing you’re not from around here, huh?” Clay said.

Clay leaned against the wall. “What were you even doing with that, anyway?”

George leaned back against the opposite wall. “Just recycling the massive amounts of trash I’ve accumulated from unpacking.”

Clay casually glanced into the box again. “You’re still unpacking?”

“Well, yeah,” George responded. “I only arrived about an hour ago.”

Clay peered past the propped door into George’s room. While the right side of the room was fully furnished, the left was still bare save for a made bed. Bins and boxes and bags were scattered around on the floor, but not another person was there.

“Well, plane tickets to America aren’t exactly cheap, so yeah. It’s just me.”

Clay frowned a little at that. As much as his parents were pestering him today, he couldn’t imagine moving in alone, much less moving to a new country.

“Do you want some help?”

“I mean I’m really not busy –”

“I’m just saying, it seems like you’ve got a lot of –”

“Alright!” Clay chuckled. “Alright, if you’re gonna be stubborn, I’ll just let you suffer, then.”

Clay continued, grabbing the cardboard box, “But at least let me take this to the trash for you.”

“Come on! I was the one that spilled it all over the floor anyway!’ He lifted the box into his arms and started walking backwards.

“Oh my god,” George said, rolling his eyes but smiling. He started to trail towards Clay.

Clay picked up the pace. “I’m gonna recycle it! I’m gonna save the Earth and there’s nothing you can do about it.”

Clay jogged down to the trash room and disappeared behind the door for a second. George stood by the wall shaking his head.

“See, was that so hard?” Clay said, emerging again.

“I’m your hero? Is that what I heard you say?” Clay teased.

“Thank you, did you say?” Clay said, walking backwards towards his own room. “Oh, you’re welcome!”

George shouted down the hallway, “I’m gonna go crawl in my boxes, now, goodbye!”

Laughing, Clay turned the key in his lock.

His roommate, Darryl, was sitting in bed on his laptop. He had headphones on, but promptly pulled them off to smile at Clay. “Hey, what’s up?” he said cheerfully.

“Oh, my goodness, I know. Me too.”

Suddenly, Clay’s phone started ringing. He took a glance and sighed dramatically.

“It’s my mom,” Clay huffed. Darryl pursed his lips and looked away. “Jesus –” Clay raised the phone to his ear. “Hi, mom.” There was vague babbling on the other end. “Okay.” More babbling. “Yeah, I get it, it’s a long drive.” She babbled on. “Okay, yeah. Mmhm. Goodnight. Yeah, I love you, too, mom.” He hung up.

Clay swiveled his head back to Darryl. “She didn’t want to fall asleep without saying goodnight,” he said, exasperated.

“Alright,” Darryl replied, drawing out the word. Clay flopped on his bed (with a bit of difficulty, since it was raised higher than the previous beds in his life) and squeezed his eyes shut.

Despite everything, as Clay was laying in bed that night, recalling the events of the day, he smiled softly to himself. Maybe this wouldn’t be so bad after all.