AN: Thanks for all the responses everyone. They really motivated me to continue writing this story. The review so far have been absolutely amazing.
Stanley was sitting at the kitchen table munching on a candy bar that Mabel had found left over from Summerween. Dipper and Mabel were looking at him as he ate, and so was Ford, it was kinda weird to be honest. They all acted like he was an illusion or something, like any minute he was going to disappear. He still had no idea what was going on. How was he a Grunkle to these kids when they were even older then he was? Why was Ford so old and looked like as though he hasn’t slept in a long time?
He opened his mouth to speak—
“You'renotreallynineyearsoldyou'rereallyfiftyeightbutyougotagedbacktoakidagain!” Mabel blurted out kinda fast but luckily for him he spoke fast talk. And was able to hear what his niece had said.
Dipper face palmed.
“So…what do you remember, Grunkle Stan?” He asked as he gave Stan some Pit cola. Ley resisted to roll his eyes at the ‘Grunkle’ comment. “All I remember is wakin up in a field.” Dipper eyes widened at the kids short answer.
Ley nodded as he finished off the last of his candy bar and took a huge gulp of soda. “Yup! After I woke up I made my way here.” He burped loudly and smiled like any typical boy his age would, even if he technically wasn’t. Stanley glanced at Ford. “So…I’m not actually a kid?” He asked slowly, still not believing that he was actually a fifty eight year old man. “I look like you?”
For the first time a tiny smile ghost it’s way on his twin’s lips. “Not exactly identical. But we look more alike then we did as kids..”
The nine year old let that sink in before he asked another question that’s been on his mind. “All this weird stuff— I mean I knew you liked sci-fi, Ford. But… for it to be all real is…” Dipper rubbed his arm, feeling sympathy for his young Grunkle.
“I know how you feel, Grun—”
“—AWESOME!” Dipper’s eyes widened once again at the overjoyed answer. Then he sighed quietly, leave it to Stanley to find this situation an adventure. Ley jumped in his chair and grinned from ear to ear, and jumped up and down in his chair. “I mean, if you look this cool, bro— I must be a really cool monster hunter too! Using my fists to punch jerkish creatures like Crampelter, while helping you solves mysteries, Ford?! That’s like your dream!” He looked at his brother straight into his brown eyes with identical innocent ones.
In that moment, Ford knew that he couldn’t reveal anything to his de-aged brother anything, his death, his 30 year quest to restart the portal, his accident at the science fair, his grifter years of being homeless, and especially and most importantly his incident with the portal. Stanford wouldn't— couldn’t tell him any of that. The information would scar him forever. Yes, he’d stay silent. At least, until he figured out a way to change Ley back. “Yes, we do a lot of hunting, Ley.”
Ley’s face beamed. “And we do it together?”
Ford nodded, the lump in his throat returned when he realized that being together, with each other was all Stanley ever wanted in his life. “Yes— we do it together.”
“And— Dipper and I help!” Mabel interjected as she caught on quickly to what and why Stanford was lying to her Grunkle, grabbing Journal 3 from Dipper’s vest, Journal 2 and 1 from Ford’s jacket. “You’re bro-bro wrote these journals of all the creatures here in this town! And where like your sidekicks!”
Stanley gazed at the Journals and flipped them opened and looked inside. He grinned proudly. “I’m not surprised! Fordy was always drawing things like that in his notebooks at school.” Ford choked on air that he had breathed in at his twins statement. “Ley—!” Stanley laughed at his brother’s reaction, jumping up on the table he placed a hand on top of Ford’s head.
“Don’t worry, Poindexter! You know I’ve always liked ya’s weirdness!”
Stanford’s expressions softened, knowing it was true. No matter how obsessed he got, or how many drawings Ford did or books he read, Ley always encouraged Stanford, he never called him a freak, he was always supportive and there. Even now as Ley stood in front of him de aged back to nine years old he was still supportive as ever. That was only because he didn’t know the truth on just how obsessed Ford had gotten with his strangeness. And Stanford was planning on keeping it that way.
Stanley saw the distant look in his twins gaze and he knew that Ford was thinking about something, that he was worrying over something. He never liked that look. He didn’t like to think Ford going somewhere where Ley couldn’t follow. He was sure the adult version of him didn’t either. So he grinned slyly and abruptly yanked Journal 2 off the table and bolted down the hall.
“Mine!” He called out as he laughed and outside with speed only a child his age could have. “Haha!” Ley cheered triumphantly as he heard his grandkids and brother chasing him. Placing his foot on fallen tree log he leaped into the forest, he giggled with glee, if they wanted to catch him they were gonna have to try harder then—
The voice made him skid to a stop. “Stanley, get over here!” His shoulder stiffened. Heck, his whole body stiffened, for the voice, so stern and gruff and full of order, sounded like his father. Now he was scared, for he knew the punishment for making his father use that voice. And he didn’t want a punishment, he done nothing wrong in his eyes, but to their father, he had. Slowly, he turns around, expecting to see Filbrick. Because of such he kept his eyes closed.
Ford’s heart raced. He was scared, for his brother was in the forest filled with monster and other dangerous things. Ley was only a few feet inside, he wasn’t even in any danger, yet Stanford was still afraid. The creatures had come here through a rift in dimensions and now lived in the forest, he had expended that rift with his portal, he had brought Bill here and Bill had been the one who killed Stanley, the woods beyond his shack was just at much fault as he was.
“Ley—” He began as he took a step forward.
Stanley flinched and took a step back. “I’m s-sorry, sir.”
Ford froze. Take aback by not only Ley’s sudden apology, but little 'sir’ he said afterwards. 'Sir’ was something they had called their father. He must think I'm—
“Ley— it’s me, Ford. I’m… I’m not dad.” Stanford explained as he tried to reassure his brother that he wasn’t their father. Stanley still was nervous it was Filbrick, but opened his eyes anyway. Only to see a terrified looking Stanford a few feet away. It wasn’t Filbrick after all, it had been his twin that had sounded so stern and adultly. He didn’t like that. He clinched his hands into fists, tears gathered in his eyes as he bit his lip.
“F-Ford…” His voice cracked and sounded so small as his twins name fell from his lips.
His heart dropped into his stomach. Ford shook his head as he tried to explain. “No, no, no. Ley, you’re not in trouble. I'm— I’m not going to yell at you.” He said truthfully. Not being able to stand the thought of his twin fearing him and making him cry. “Just…” Ford clinched his hands and knelt down, knowing that his father never once did that, so because such, he hoped that would ease Stanley’s mind. “Come here.” As he gave Ley a look that was all but begging.
The tears fell then and the nine year old forward, ran towards his brother as he leaped over the log, now safely inside the Mystery Shack’s space, he dropped Journal 2 carelessly on the and buried his face in Ford’s soft cotton turtle neck. “Y-Yousoundlikedad!” His exclaim was muffled by the clothing. But Ford, Dipper and Mabel could still hear it’s raw emotion. Ley gripped the back of his twins jacket like a viper.
“Please— Don’t do it again!” Stanley never wanted to hear that voice come out of Stanford’s mouth ever again. Because for one, that voice will forever send a shiver of fear down his spine, but then it reminded Ley that their parents, will no longer with them. And that saddened the child, knowing that he doesn’t remember his relationship with his mom and dad passed age nine.
Strong arms wrapped around Stanley’s body and rubbed his back gently. “It’s okay, I won’t.” Ford promised feeling guilty he caused his de-aged big brother distress. He clung on to the child as Stanford tried to calm his heartbeat that was ringing in his ears and giving him a headache. He’s fine, he’s safe. Calm down. He told himself as he felt Ley’s body start shaking. Placing a hand on the back of the boy’s head he pulled him closer. “Shh. Shh. It’s alright, Ley.” Ford whispered comfortably, right now nothing matter but calm his twin down was his number one job. Pulling away he and placed his hands on Ley’s cheeks when he saw how red they were.
“Just don’t go into the forest anymore, okay?” Stanford gently wiped away some tears away with his thumbs. “I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if you got hurt, it’s just too dangerous.”
“Yeah, Grunkle Stan.” Dipper said as he clinched Journal 3 in his hands. “I mean, it’s even dangerous for Mabel and I and we’ve been in the forest hundreds of times.”
Ford turned his attention back on Ley and smiled. “I know this is difficult and confusing for you, but— You understand?” For a minute Stanley said nothing, just hung his head low while his brother’s hands were on his neck, and his brown hair tickled Stanford’s chin. “Okay.” Ley said finally, looking up he gave Ford a grin that still had tears within the corners. The time for tears for now was over for the child, he smiled even more when he saw the relief on Ford’s face.
“Buuuut—” He stated dragging out the word, then his face became mischievous again, he yanked Journal 3 from Dipper’s hands and bolted towards the house. “I get to kept Dippingsauce’s Journal!” He cackled happily.
“Grunkle Stan, give it back.” Dipper yelled as he chased after the nine year old. He attempted to dive bomb the kid, but Stan just moved out of the way. “Stan, you’re not old enough to understand the contents of the Journals!” Ley threw the Journal to Mabel who caught it with a smile.
“Says the twelve year old who cries easily.”
“Mabel!” Dipper blushed, gaze shifting to their Grunkle Ford a second. Stanley beamed at Mabel’s comment. “Hahahaha! Mabel’s in on it now! Double Team!” He cheered doing a cocky dance as his niece threw him the book once more.
Dipper looked less then amused now. He clinched his hands into fist and raised them to his face. This… Was probably a bad idea.
Ley smirked. Tossing the book to Ford, who caught it with ease. And held up his hands in unison. “Alright! Put up your dukes, Dip!”
“Go Grunkle Stan!” Mabel cheered, she jumped up and down as Stanley and Dipper began to box.
Stanford, still kneeling in the grass, looked at the sight before him and smiled. Clapping along with Mabel when Stan was able to trip Dipper and send him falling into the grass. His eyes narrowed and his gaze moved to the forest then to his Journals. The way to change his brother back to his adult self was probably in the woods, but he had no idea what that magical way might do to his brother, it could successfully reverse the effects, but it’s possible Ley might— Revert back to his previous state. No, no he was going to figure this out without the forests help this time. From now on he vowed to himself to never again step foot into that forest again.
And as long as he could help it, neither will Stanley. Because he will not lose his twin, not again. Never again.
AN: Another chapter as you all wished. I hope this one was just as good as the first one. I had a hellava time writing the beginning of this second chapter. I just kept getting writers block and it annoyed the shit out of me.
Im sorry that there’s a lot of feels between Ford and Ley, but I just can’t help it. LOOK at the situation their all in! How can there NOT be tons of feels!? How I tell you!?
BUT it’s done and I’m happy with how it turned out! And for those who may wonder, Stanley is going to “borrow” Journal 2. And as we all know Stanley Pines borrow in his vocabulary means he’s going to steal it. Why? Because why not!? After it was stolen by Grunkle Stan from Gideon, it hasn’t been used since.
Soooo— Thoughts? Please leave a review!