Fandom: Sky High
Characters: Warren Peace and the rest of the gang
Word Count: 2,583
Spoilers: All of the film
Disclaimer: Sky High is owned by Disney. I make no money.
Notes: This isn’t precisely fluffy, nor is it exactly a laugh-fest, but I thought it was fairly amusing, and hopefully you will too. This is kind of an outtake from chapter 22 of War and Peace In Mind, but I also wrote it as a stand-alone.
Summary: The gang finds out when Warren's birthday is and become determined that he have a good time. Wacky hijinks ensue!
“So what are you working on?” Ethan asked. I refrained from sighing as I tried to tune out the distractions in the lunchroom, failing miserably.
“My hero’s license application,” I said finally, tapping the pen twice on the paper before considering another question. Please list all members of your family that previously worked as superheroes. Yeah, how exactly do I answer that? Do they want the answers from before or after my dad was jailed?
“I thought you couldn’t turn that in until you were eighteen,” he said.
“I’ll be turning eighteen soon,” I explained. What does my favorite food have to do with being a hero? Half these questions make no sense!
“Really, when’s your birthday? You didn’t say anything about it last year,” Layla asked.
“I didn’t say anything because I know you’d end up decorating my locker or something equally cute,” I pointed out. Costume preferences: Spandex – God no!
“Aww, come on, it’ll be fun! When’s your birthday?” Layla pleaded.
“Not telling,” I replied. Sidekick preference? This form must be outdated.
“No.” Please list all your powers bel-
I abruptly found my application snatched out of my hand by a shifted Magenta, who scurried down to the end of the table before I could snatch it back.
“Give it,” I snapped, standing up. Magenta calmly shifted back and perused the sheet briefly, then slid it back down to me.
“Halloween,” she said, grinning. I thunked back down on the bench and put my head in my hands. Oh no…
“Your birthday’s on Halloween? That’s so cool!” Zack exclaimed. “You going trick-or-treating?”
“I’m a senior in high school, I don’t trick-or-treat,” I growled, staring at the application again. “I’m giving out candy.”
“On your birthday? Come on, at least we can throw you a party!” Will exclaimed.
“I don’t party,” I reminded him. “And I like giving out candy. At least people are expected to be scared of me on Halloween.”
“Dude, that’s just not right. Seriously, giving away candy? That’s wrong,” Zack said soberly.
“Just because you can eat a hundred Pixi Stix at a time doesn’t mean the rest of us run on sugar,” I reminded him.
“He still trick-or-treats,” Magenta confided in a stage whisper, and the rest of us burst out laughing, Zack harder than the rest of us.
“Where else am I going to get that much free food?” he asked reasonably.
“Tell you guys what, if you promise to not decorate my locker, you can come over on Halloween and we can watch movies or something,” I offered. Anything was preferable to having them bruit that about. I was odd enough as it was without having people tag me as a “devil’s child” for being born on Samhain Eve. Not that they didn’t do that already…
“Whoa, invitation to Warren’s that doesn’t involve studying? Totally there!” Zack said.
“I mean it,” I warned. “If there’s even a single balloon, the deal’s off.” I glared at Layla in particular, knowing her practically pathological obsession with cuteness. She only smiled sweetly. I had a bad feeling about this.
I had half-expected it, so wasn’t totally surprised when on Tuesday morning my locker was plastered with black, red, and orange crepe paper and balloons, a little sign proclaiming “Happy Birthday Warren!” and taped with black roses. The roses are what tipped me off, because I knew only Layla could have gotten a hold of them in Maxville this deep into the fall.
“Stronghold, your girlfriend has a hearing problem,” I told him when I sat down to lunch that day, completely ignoring Layla.
“Well ‘his girlfriend’ can speak for herself,” she said indignantly, folding her arms.
“What part of ‘don’t decorate my locker’ didn’t you understand?” I asked pointedly.
“It was Magenta’s idea!” she protested, and Magenta carefully pretended she couldn’t hear us.
“Sure, right, and the roses?”
“Ok, the roses were mine. Did you like them?” she asked hopefully.
“Stronghold, does it bother you that your girlfriend gave me roses?” I asked him, hoping for some backup. Will looked at me, then at Layla. He swallowed.
“Nope, doesn’t bother me at all,” he said quickly. Girl’s got him trained… I thought.
“Well, here’s your decorations back,” I told her, reaching into my pocket and pulling out a baggie full of ashes, which I dropped next to her lunch tray. Zack, Ethan, and Magenta started snickering at the other end of the table.
“You didn’t burn the roses, did you?” she asked, looking pained, poking the baggie uncertainly.
“I’m not that dumb. I don’t want to have to worry about the grass trying to trip me every time I go outside,” I told her, and fished the roses out of my backpack. They were a little squashed, but otherwise ok.
“Take ‘em,” I said, handing her the bunch.
“Oh, that’s so sweet!” I heard someone exclaim, and turned to see a few freshman girls watching the exchange between Layla and I. I suddenly realized what it looked like and began to pound my head on the table. Will didn’t even bother to stop me.
“Dude, you walked right into that one,” Zack said sympathetically.
Despite my threats of fiery death to the contrary, the rest of gang showed up that night, movies in hand.
“Uh Warren, you have a cat on your head,” Zack said when I opened the door.
“It’s my costume,” I said off-handedly. My cat Trixie had insisted upon accompanying me around during Halloween, as she never missed an opportunity to get cooed over.
Unfortunately she had also insisted on reclining on my cranium, for reasons past understanding. She also had objected strenuously to moving to a different location, no matter what I did, so I finally had to give it up. I just chalked it up to the full moon and the inherent madness of felines.
“You’re going as… what?” he asked.
“A pyrokinetic with a possessive pet, what do you think? Next person to make a smart comment gets their movie sacrificed in a satanic ritual on the grill in the backyard.”
“Wait, you know a satanic ritual?”
“It was my mid-term project for Comparative Religions class.”
Zack opened his mouth, shut it again, opened it, shut it, and then finally decided there was no possible comeback line for that, and walked inside. I smirked. I didn’t really know one of course, but sometimes messing with Zack was just a little bit too much fun.
“You’re expecting that many people?” Layla asked, looking at the three bowls of supplies I had by the door.
“They’re for different people,” I said, as Magenta smacked Zack’s hand away from the bowls.
“Big candy bars are for the kids with the cool costumes, little ones for the ones with lame costumes, and the apples are for the lame high school kids out for free candy.”
“I like the decorations, but why no jack-o-lantern?” Ethan said, nodding to the fake spider webs and paper cutouts of ghosts and black cats, while Will frantically tried to signal to him to shut up. Too late. Layla got going on a ten-minute diatribe about the senseless slaughter and mutilation of thousands of helpless gourds every fall while the rest of us set up in the living room.
Will had forewarned me, and my own mutilated pumpkins were safe in the backyard. Halloween was one of the few holidays super-kids could get away with using their powers openly, if they were clever about it, and I had always liked being able to light up a half-dozen pumpkins at once. But no amount of fun with fire was worth a Layla lecture, so I decided on discretion.
We had at least a half-dozen bad horror films to watch in between my answering the doorbell, and in between feeding witches, monsters, movie villains, and little superheroes, we watched zombies plague the earth, bad dreams come to life, and crazed psycho stalkers menace small-town heroines.
“Doesn’t that actor look kind of like Boomer?” Zack was asking, as some macho guy in a cabin slaughtered zombies with a chainsaw attached to his hand.
“Nah, chin’s not big enough,” Magenta said back.
“So Magenta, I think you owe me for decorating my locker this morning,” I said with deceptive casualness, pausing in the doorway to the living room during a lull.
“You burned my decorations,” she said, crossing her arms, turning away from the on-screen antics.
“You still owe me. Now half the school knows when my birthday is,” I said, not backing down.
She rolled her eyes.
“Ok, fine, it’s your birthday, what do you want?” she said with a sigh.
“Play with Trixie,” I said simply.
“That’s it? Play with your cat?” she asked incredulously. I waited a few heartbeats and gave her an evil smile. She suddenly got it and her face fell.
“Oh no, no, no, no, you’re not serious…” she said, her eyes wide.
“Completely and totally,” I said.
“But you know-,” she started.
“Trixie won’t hurt you,” I said more seriously. Magenta did have a serious problem in her vulnerability in her shifted form, and I wasn’t about to do anything that cruel to her. This was supposed to be funny, not dangerous.
“Totally. And this’ll make up for Yellowstone too,” I added. Magenta turned an interesting shade of… well, magenta, and shifted. Trixie perked up at the appearance of a guinea pig and jumped down from my head to investigate.
“Mrow?” she inquired, looking back up at me.
“Go play,” I told her. Trixie chirped to herself and sniffed at the guinea pig. Then poked her carefully with a paw. Then she wrapped Magenta up in her arms like she did to her favorite toys and started licking her face.
“Zaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack!” Magenta cried indignantly.
“Stay out of this Glowstick,” I warned, as Zack popped out of his chair to avenge his girlfriend. “She owes me. And you.”
“Owes me for what?” he asked, confused.
“Yellowstone,” I said, and Will choked on his pop. I glared at him, another mystery solved. Last year, we had gone to Yellowstone Park on a camping as a reward after our first real mission. The only problem for me was that it was in late fall, which in that neck of the woods, meant snow.
Cold weather and the aftereffects of the mission had apparently had a rather adverse affect on me. I had wandered, delirious, out of camp one morning and thrown myself into one of the hot springs, in only my boxer shorts, in an unconscious attempt to get warm. When the gang had found me missing, Will had apparently located me, and then sent Magenta to bring me back. Which was why she still sometimes called me “Ab-Boy,” when she felt the need to rile me up. I figured a little romp with Trixie counted towards getting back a lot of the embarrassment that stunt had garnered me.
Luckily only Magenta (and Will too apparently) had all the details about the “Yellowstone incident,” so while Zack tried to figure out what the hell we were talking about, I went to answer another ring at the doorbell.
I took a quick look out of the peephole and had to take a second and third look to make sure I wasn’t hallucinating. Then I had to call the rest of the gang over to see this. While they hid themselves behind various pieces of furniture, I put on my best angry face and opened the door.
“The Hamburgler and Grimace?” I said casually, leaning against the door. “That’s low, even for you.”
Lash and Speed’s eyes widened behind their masks and costumes when they saw me.
“Crap, this is Peace’s house?” Lash whispered frantically to his partner in crime, clutching a bulging pillowcase full of candy. Speed looked back at him and shook his head in confused denial. There was no way those two had gotten that much candy through honest trick-or-treating. Even money said they had been swiping candy from the kids all night long; it was just their style
“Get off my lawn,” I said menacingly. Just at that moment, Trixie poked her head around the door, holding Magenta gently in her mouth.
“You suck,” Magenta said to me indignantly in her squeaky voice. Someone behind me was desperately trying to choke down laughter and failing miserably. The two bullies looked from me, to Magenta, to Trixie, to each other, and burst out laughing.
“Nice going, birthday boy,” Speed choked out.
“Yeah, didn’t think you could get her to turn that trick,” Lash laughed, leaning against Speed so he wouldn’t fall over.
I took two steps outside, smiled evilly, and powered up. Even the birthday crack didn’t excuse disrespecting my friends.
“Off my lawn. Now!” I yelled, and hit two fireballs at their feet. The two jumped and ran, Speed vanishing in an instant, Lash receiving the full brunt of my wrath as I finished chasing his stretchy ass off of my property. I paused at the end of my sidewalk, making sure he was all the way down the block before bringing my attention back to my own street.
Two kids and their parents were looking at me with horrified looks on their faces.
“Uh… they wanted to take all your candy,” I said to them, frantically trying to remember any excuses from that one project in Protecting Your Heroic Identity class.
“Wow…” one of them said.
“Cool special effects!” the other exclaimed, in the tones of awe. Poetically enough, the kids were dressed up as the Commander and Jetstream, and when I turned back to my own front door, Will was standing in the doorway, his shoulders shaking with laughter. I ignored him and gave the kids their pick of the large candy bars, waiting until they were out of earshot before turning to Will.
“Warren Peace saves the Commander and Jetstream from school bullies. Film at eleven,” I told him in a deadpan voice, and he completely lost it, collapsing against the wall and trying to get his breath again between bouts of laughter.
“Ok, ok, I deserved that,” he gasped out.
“Hey Warren, I think Layla found your jack-o-lanterns,” I heard Ethan call from the back of the house, and I sighed in exasperation and headed out back. Instead of a livid Layla trying to coax life out of my collection of mutilated gourds, I found them all lit up cheerfully, surrounding a pile of presents and a mound of fortune cookies.
“Sorry, we didn’t know what kind of cake you liked, and since we only found out about your birthday just the other day…” Layla trailed off.
“So we raided the Paper Lantern,” Will said from behind me. “Happy birthday, Warren!”
“You guys…” I started, and then trailed off. I don’t think anyone had ever thrown me a party before, aside from my mom.
“You can thank us later, open your presents dude so we can eat the cookies, I’m starved!” Zack said.
“Where’s Magenta?” I asked, seeing everyone out here but her.
“Right here,” I heard near my feet, seeing Magenta patiently accepting a rather thorough bath from my cat.
I laughed at that and picked up Trixie, letting Magenta shift back.
“Any cracks about my hair and I’m going to bite you,” she warned.
I bit my tongue and went to go open my presents. Despite everything, it was best birthday I had ever had.