You don't ship Stanchez? That's cool, that's fine. But consider the following...
Stan with a ton of internalized
homophobia who, even in his old age, isn’t very comfortable admitting
he’s into another man. Canonically pansexual Rick with a
who-gives-a-shit attitude to the gender binary and a strong desire to
make other people uncomfortable.
Soos going through Stan’s records to
find music for some event the Mystery Shack is throwing and
discovering a brightly colored album of bizarre, vulgar, screaming
punk music tucked in among the subdued oldies.
Stan getting flustered
when he mentions it, snatching it away and telling Soos to go clean
the gutters or groom the Sascrotch or something.
Rick wearing Stan’s shirts and swimming
in them. Stan wearing t-shirts with Flesh Curtains’s logo on them.
Rick writing several songs about Stan
for Flesh Curtains that don’t have Stan’s name in them but when Stan
hears them he knows, he knows. Stan hearing torch songs on the radio
and thinking of Rick.
Rick picking some obnoxious pop song and
jokingly declaring that it’s “their song” just to annoy Stan,
playing it on every jukebox and generally being an enormous troll
about it, but then years later when the two of them are on the outs
Rick hears that annoying pop song on the radio and starts crying and
Rick saving Stan’s life without even
knowing it by coming into his life and distracting him from his
problems just when he was losing hope. Stan saving Rick’s life
without ever knowing it by giving him a purpose and a goal when he
was beginning to think everything was pointless.
Both of them caring about each other
so, so much but being far too emotionally constipated to express
their affection openly so they develop a way of showing each other
they care that looks incomprehensible, even dickish to outsiders.
Like Rick is hanging around the shack and sees Stan wincing and
rubbing his back, so he throws his back brace at him and says “here,
dumbass.” And Mabel and Dipper are like “that guy is so rude”
but Stan is touched.
Stan and Trans!Rick. Just…Stan and
Rick collapsing on Stan’s doorstop
after nearly sending himself into a coma via a variety of illicit
substances. Stan frantically trying to care for him even though he
has no idea how to treat an overdose of neputian dream crystals. Stan
screaming at Rick when he’s finally healthy enough to talk again.
Stan and Rick going on crazy crime
sprees when they were younger. Stan and Rick still going on crazy
crime sprees now that they’re older.
Morty visiting the twins and getting
made over by Mabel. Morty going on a monster hunt with the twins and
being pleasantly surprised at what a nice, non-abusive fun adventure
Rick hiding out from the Galactic
Federation in Gravity Falls. Rick living in the Mystery Shack with
Stan. Rick slowly, subtly becoming more content and domestic.
realizing he just spent forty minutes shopping online for a birthday
present for Stan and thinking he’s settling down and getting
incredibly pissed off about
it and taking Stan on some crazy space adventure to compensate.
Rick making cocoa
and watching TV on the couch with Stan afterwards and realizing he’s
actually enjoying this more than the intergalactic adventure and
becoming incredibly angry at himself and acting like a pissy house
cat for a week.
I was thinking about how Hyperion would be like if Rhys and Jack managed it together as Co-CEOs. The classic ‘Good Cop/Bad Cop’ seems to fit well with these two corporate jerks.
One of the aspects I enjoy most about Rhys and Jack’s dynamic is that their temperaments are different enough to balance each other but overlap enough for them to collaborate ::::: Rhys is level-headed enough to keep Jack grounded and keep him from making rash/destructive decisions. Jack is a lot more experienced in running a business and I assume he’s quite brilliant at it. There’s a limit to what sheer force can achieve, and waving a gun around alone can’t push a corporation to the top while making the population love/hate him. He’s a man who knows when to use a whip, make bold decisions, and when to use a carrot (he just likes using the whips too much). He can mentor Rhys in those aspects.
So I guess this would be a rough draft of a (canon divergence?) AU where the Vault Hunters and residents in other galaxies refer to them as the “Two-Headed Snake of Hyperion” (idk it’s funny to me)::::: Together, they launch a planet rehabilitation project called “Project Angel” for Pandora, where they combine Jack’s approach of using force to wipe out legit trash bandits and dangerous creatures, and Rhys’ approach of forming a safe community and living environment with more consideration for the rest of the Pandorans.
—edit: I’ve decided to call this a “HyperionSnake!AU”