Dimitri’s head was killing him. Why the hell was his room so bright? It felt like the light was searing his corneas through his eyelids. Maybe it was time to buy new curtains? Groaning he rolled over and tried to cover his face with his arm while resisting the urge to shiver. They needed to buy some rugs, the stupid floor was cold in the fall. Wait, the floor? Despite the bright glare he cautiously opened his eyes and looked around.
Immediately to his left were wooden legs that he followed up to the plain beige couch cushions his older brother Kenric had picked out. He’d never understand why his brother was such a stick in the mud when it came to the colors they decorated their apartment with. Tossed over the back of the couch after an Avatar marathon with Katcha; the bright purples, pinks, and yellows of his favorite quilt shone brighter than the light coming through the blinds. The pounding in his head had him wondering if his brother was on to something with the boring color scheme.
Stretching his legs, the battered beige armchair hit his foot. They needed a bigger apartment. They were both young, though he’d never admit that to Kenric who he teased mercilessly about being a whole six years older at thirty-two. Fenton Security paid them both damn well as two of their top security specialists. They could afford something better, right?
There was something more important though, wasn’t there? Oh yeah. Why was he on the living room floor? Shifting onto his side proved to be a tactical error as a wave of nausea rolled through him. Luckily they kept a bucket next to the couch for just such an occasion. Once his stomach was blessedly empty his head decided to go double time with the pounding.
“Keep it down, D. Dammit. How much did we drink last night?”
Following the sound of his brother’s growling voice, Dimitri realized Kenric was laid out on the floor too. Kenric shifted over reaching for the bucket and Dimitri had to hold in his laughter. Well. He tried. He really did but he was soon shaking too hard to hold it in and burst out cackling. Kenric looked over at him annoyed, “Since when do you find hangovers funny?”
“Since I found out you’re naked! Where the hell are your clothes? Hahaha!”
Dimitri continued laughing as Kenric looked down and realized he was stark naked. Looking around he spotted his pants and grabbed them. Halfway through putting them on he noticed something that put a nasty grin on his face. Never a good sign.
“Looks like I’m not the only one.”
“Not the only what?”
Chuckling Kenric only shook his head as Dimitri finally noticed that he too was without a stitch. What the fuck was going on this morning? Looking around he found his pants near the door along with his shirt and the rest of his clothes. Why the hell had he started stripping in the kitchen? His head chose that moment to remind him he’d abused it the night before. Groaning he put on his pants and reached for the aspirin. They had started out keeping things like aspirin and band-aids in the bathroom, like normal people, but their personal first aid kit had grown to the point that it took up an entire cupboard in the kitchen now. Blessedly clothed, Kenric let him know he wasn’t feeling so hot right now either. He always growled when he was hung over.
“Tell me we’ve got enough painkillers to knock my ass out.”
“First come, first dose. How about you close the blinds? I swear the sun is trying to blind me.”
Rooting through the cabinet he finally found the bottle of aspirin and downed two pills, not bothering with getting water first. Leaning his head against the cool cabinet door he prayed for medicated tranquility while Kenric shuffled around the room closing all the blinds. When it was finally dark enough he could open his eyes without his head feeling like it was exploding he turned around to look at their apartment. Kenric was on his way to the kitchen but what caught Dimitri’s attention was closer to the front door.
“Um, did we knock over a bank last night? Rob an ATM? Armored car?”
“The hell are you talking about?”
Grabbing the aspirin bottle out of Dimitri’s hand Kenric also chose to skip the water. Dimitri walked across their living room to pick up a few of the dollar bills scattered around the floor. He saw ones, fives, tens, and some twenties too. That was quite a bit of blunt. Checking his pockets he found more.
“The fuck did we do last night?”
“Call Katcha. My phone’s dead.”
Nodding, Dimitri reached for his cell phone to find it wasn’t there. Patting all his pockets he didn’t find it, though Kenric found a white lace thong in his. There was a name and phone number written on them that Ken didn’t remember how he got but was debating calling later. His headache now forgotten, Dimitri started searching the living room. His phone wasn’t under the couch or between the cushions. It wasn’t in any of the cabinets or the fridge. What had he done with the damn thing? This was no longer funny. It was just his luck that his brother was there to witness this too. He loved it when Ken pointed out the obvious.
“Don’t tell me you lost your phone.”
“How about you just help me find it?”
Kenric shook his head and started on his usual spiel about responsibility and keeping organized as Dimitri gradually lost his cool. Where the fuck had he left his phone? Pulling all the books off their shelves and looking behind the TV, he didn’t find it. He checked his dresser and closet with no luck. Tearing off his sheets and flipping over his mattress didn’t solve the mystery though he did find that copy of Gulliver’s Travels he’d been looking for the other day. “The fuck is it?”
“How about being a little quieter? I’ll call your fucking phone once mine is charged and you can find it then.”
Glaring at Kenric it occurred to him that his brother had hidden his phone before as a drunken prank. Ken wouldn’t remember doing it right now but it wouldn’t be odd if he had last night. Stalking over to Kenric’s room he ignored his brother’s smirk and opened the door. What he saw laid out on the bed made him pause.
“Bro. Uh. I know you’ve got a major kinky streak but seriously. There are limits. If this is the way you’re going I may need to move out.”
The aspirin must not have kicked in yet because Kenric was still growling at him, “The hell are you talking about and do it more quietly.”
“I’m talking about you dabbling in bestiality. I try to keep open minded about shit but this…it’s pushing even my limits and I have to say I didn’t think I had a limit when it came to kink.”
Kenric looked annoyed but that changed once he stood next to Dimitri and looked into his room. There was a snow-white duck sitting in the middle of the bed. The bird turned to look at them and gave a sleepy quack before resettling his wings and closing his eyes to go back to sleep. He didn’t really think Kenric was into that but hey. He couldn’t say much with the duck there on his brother’s bed. At least it wasn’t wearing lingerie.
“There’s a duck in my room.”
They stood there in silence staring at the sleeping bird until Kenric asked the question that Dimitri was half afraid to ask. “Why is there a duck in my room?”
“How the fuck do I know? It’s your room.”
Kenric glanced at him in annoyance before pushing past him. The duck looked at Ken seemingly unconcerned until his brother tried to pick the bird up. Dimitri had to work to keep standing because he was laughing so hard. Kenric swore a blue streak as he tried to grab the bird but got a face full of feathers instead as it batted at him and half hopped half flew across the bed. Dimitri was clinging to the door frame, watching Kenric spit out feathers and stare daggers at the now equally ticked off looking bird.
“How about you make yourself useful and help me get Daffy out of here.”
“Daffy? He looks more like Donald to me. Besides! You’re doing a great job, bro! Keep it up!”
The look Kenric gave him had him laughing again. He better get a hold of himself before Ken changed targets but fuck. He was having a hard time catching his breath. After about five minutes of watching his brother chase the bird around the room, during which it took a nice sized crap on Ken’s comforter, Dimitri relented and helped corner the bird so they could toss a sheet over it and finally get it under control. By the look on Ken’s face, his headache was now worse. He also had the joy of cleaning feathers and bird crap off of his things. The day was starting to look up! At least for Dimitri. Taking the bird from Ken’s arms he was amused to note that it was much more docile with him. Probably because he wasn’t talking about plucking, roasting, and eating it like Ken was.
The bird turned and quacked at Dimitri which made him smile back at it, “I think I’ll call him Wilbur.”
“No names. We’re not keeping it.”
“Why not? I kinda like him.”
Kenric gave him a nasty look then checked his phone. It must have still been charging because he groaned and flopped face down onto the couch. Dimitri sat in the recliner and petted the duck. It settled right away and seemed to enjoy the attention. The feathers were softer than he’d have guessed and he almost forgot about his missing phone, the cash of unknown origin scattered around their apartment, and that they’d woken up naked on the floor. Oh, and the mystery of why there was a duck in the apartment. Can’t leave that one off the list. Kenric must have known what Dimitri was thinking or not thinking because he spoke up, voice slightly muffled by the couch cushions.
“You can’t keep it.”
“But he’s a nice bird. See how good he’s being? The cash over by the door will easily pay the pet deposit and get all the bird stuff he needs. We could even put a little kiddie pool in the corner for him. Admit it, Wilbur is a good fit. Especially with our fur allergies.”
Kenric lifted his head just enough so that Dimitri could see the death glare being directed his way. “Not. Keeping. It.”
“Have it your way then. What are we doing with Wilbur since we’re not keeping him?”
“Chuck him out the window and wish him the best of luck?”
Dimitri had to snort at that. Most people didn’t know it but his brother was actually a big softy when it came to kids and animals. Kenric would likely dive out the window trying to save the duck if he did toss it out. That would be funny as hell and if they weren’t both hanging so badly he might have pranked his brother by pretending to do just that. Unfortunately, the pounding in his skull was coming back and he still had to find his phone.
“Where the fuck did I leave it…”
“Check to see if my cell is charged. If it is call yours and pray your annoying ass ringtone doesn’t make my head hurt more. If it does, you’ll be going out the window and Wilbur gets your room. Now that I’m not chasing him he’s quieter than a certain redheaded shit I know.”
If his head wasn’t hurting too he’d put on the radio and blast it but since it was he chose to let the comment go. He still had to find his damn phone too. It was a few more minutes before Ken’s cell was charged enough to turn on but when he did it started going off with both text message and voicemail notifications. He’d let Ken mess with those later and called his phone, walking around the apartment so he’d hear it ringing or the vibration if it was on silent. Just his luck though, there wasn’t a peep anywhere in the apartment.
“Well, fuck. It’s not here.”
Kenric growled something from the couch but it was lost in the cushions. He could guess what it was though and he called Katcha. Not encouraging, it went straight to voicemail. What the hell had they done last night? Katcha practically lived by her phone and wouldn’t miss a chance to regale them with their drunken antics. This did not bode well.
“Cheshire isn’t answering.”
That got his brother’s attention, he was pulling himself off the couch and frowning. Dimitri tried calling Katcha’s brother Eamon, their designated driver last night, but his phone went straight to voicemail and so did Ryan’s, their other drinking buddy. They couldn’t all have let their phones die so something was definitely up. Turning to Kenric he knew he looked as worried as he felt.
“What’s wrong, baby boy?”
He hated when Kenric called him that but at least he wasn’t growling at him anymore. “No one’s picking up. I think we need to figure out what the hell happened last night. How are we gonna do that?”
Kenric rolled his eyes at him. “Easy, we backtrack. No idea where we ended the night so we go where we started. Need to catch a cab to Fitzhugh’s and see if anyone knows where we went after we left last night. Even if they don’t know we’ll hear something. With our crew, if we did anything monumentally stupid everyone there will already know about it.”
His brother had a point. Hell, if they’d been doing anything near as stupid as he was afraid they had then it’d probably be up on the board along with bets on how they’d react when they found out. Looking over at the money still scattered by the door he hoped the bar wasn’t taking bets on how long before the cops picked them up for bank robbery. That’d really suck balls.