Party at the End of the Universe

Two teens who realise that a billboard at bus stops in north London for adverts have been going up for a widow service they say for the one that left us .co .uk. if you go on the website it directs you to two emails, it is not what it seems and so they investigate.

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1. Chapter 1

 

It was cold and the air froze with each exhale as Damien rushed through the corridors of Dean Hill School, the bell had rung and the students poured en mass from the building, the doors opened wide for the end of school. They had shut the heating off at noon to conserve energy as, according to teachers, there was only a short assembly.

 

Damien was not pleased by this, while he sat on the seats that towered over the gymnasium in a short sleeved collared shirt with cacti in many colours and sweater vest, he could feel goosebumps forming across his body as he shivered violently, only to look to teachers in duffel jackets and scowl. He had tried to take his coat into assembly, but it wasn’t allowed apparently, not to mention he had been told the gymnasium would have been warmer. It wasn’t. 

 

At least Thorvald’s hand was warm. He could feel his hand warm from numbness when it was in his. He glanced at Thorvald and raised an eyebrow and received a smirk in return. Thorvald took a moment to glance back at Damien, whilst he gazed out of the window across the room. Rays of yellow orange light danced delicately upon the ashy curls of his hair, making it look like it was entertained with strands of gold. His head was only slightly turned away, so he could see the constellation of freckles that glimmered in his soft face. Thorvald squeezed Damien's hand a little tighter, a wave of protective instinct drowning him. He could feel himself blushing when he finally turned away, a deep seated warm raged inside him, he felt delirious with love. The assembly dragged on, and what was meant to be forty five minutes became an hour and then an hour and a half, in that very school way. On his way out, Damien had seen Head Thomas being shouted at by a student’s parents because the assembly overrun to such an extent that they missed their train to the cotswolds. 

 

“So, most of the school go to the pizza express shop up the way.” Thorvald explained to Damien.

 

They had stopped two streets from the school grounds. Damien was sitting on the red brick wall, his feet scraping across the ground as they dangled, leaning on Throvald. Thorvald stood next to him, leaning 

on the wall. He was wearing a thin bomber jacket and seemed undeterred by an icy wind. Damien shivered again, unable to stay warm even in a woollen overcoat. 

 

“But,” he paused to brush a curl of hair from Damien’s face, “there’s a very small nice café the other way all together, I know that you prefer less people.” 

 

Damien hunched over a bit, trying to avoid the cold by decreasing his surface area. To him it made sense to him, theoretically and yet to his dismay it didn’t work. 

 

“Yeah, that sounds really nice.” He pushed his head against Thorvalds arm affectionately before looking up. “Does it have central heating? Or just warmth above four degrees?” 

 

Thorvald smirked in that way that made Damien feel butterflies and made him want to fall in love Thorvald all over again, thousands of times. “Of course. I would not suggested it if it had no heating system, Damien. You are shaking as much as a leaf.” 

 

They walked through the coffee shop into a an odd sort of quiet, the coffee machines screamed but there was little chatter as it was only two in the afternoon. The door chimed to greet them and the warm air showered them. Damien sighed, thrilled by the change in temperature. They shuffled to the counter, covered in cakes and breads and muffins. Coffee filled the room, the scent wafting across the wooden furniture. 

 

“Black coffee and could I have some sugar on the side?” Damien smiled at the girl behind the counter, she looked about sixteen and her hair was falling from a bun. Her eyes darted around her little area to see where all the ingredients are and then back to Damien sympathetically. 

 

“What size, also, take away or stay in?” She stuttered, trying to smile but growing pale with panic. 

 

“Medium, please, to stay.” Damien replied. Thorvald smiled at her trying to lessen her worry. He had that affect on people. Like his gaze projected soothing words in your mind. 

 

“Could I have a medium hot chocolate to stay?” Thorvald added. 

 

“Whipped cream and mashmallows?” she smiled weakly at him, very accepting of his gesture. 

Thorvald nodded and smiled again. 

 

They sat down with their drinks at a bar like area with tall swivel stools and a view of the small street. The table was made of the same ashen wood that covered most of the rest of the cafe. It had a cabin-home vibe that couldn’t be mistaken. This was greatly amplified by the warm glowing fire that smoked and spat in 

a corner; sputtering out ash and embers. 

 

“Have you seen those weird adds on the busses?” Damien asked, sipping on his coffee. 

 

“The widow service?” Thorvald offered, removing a sketchbook from his bag as well art a worn down pencil case. “Can I draw you?” 

 

Damien nodded, “Yeah, you can and I do mean those.” 

 

Damien got his own notebook and pencil case out of his own bag and side by side they were almost juxtaposed. Damien had nice minimalist line and order. His pencil case was sleek and clean, his pens were black and pencils were sharpened. Thorvald’s, however, was not. The leather pencil case and a hole in one end and ink had soaked through the bottom. It was also huge. His sketchbook, while still intact was scribbles and sketches and colour and collages. It was messy. He opened the page and wrote ‘Damien Drawing No.23’ and began to sketch across the off white pages. Damien opened his phone meanwhile, scrolling through news apps and websites, occasionally writing notes in his notebook. The pencil scratched across the page as Thorvald offered Damien one of his headphones. Mozart simmered in the background noise of the restaurant, mixing together with the surroundings. 

 

“This is interesting,” Damien noted, tapping Thorvalds sprawled fingers gently. “Serial Killer in the making, no suspects or anything from the police, they always take a canine tooth, but the killing differs from 

victim to victim. However, they’re all displayed in a glade on Hampstead Heath in the same ritualistic fashion. Antlers attached to the skull with surgical pins and -“ 

 

“Stop, please.” Thorvald grimaced slightly before clasping Damien’s hand tightly. He looked to Damien, eyes shining, his lips curled into a horrified grimace. He blinked and smiled again. “I love your hobbies, I 

hate the gore.”

 

Damien nodded, “Sorry. This one's unsolved. Plus, we need to go home. It’s four o’clock and I want to get my homework done before ten tonight.” 

 

 

Damien stood on tip toe trying to get a physics textbook from his shelves before Thorvald finally laughed, 

getting up to help him. He got the book and placed his arms around Damien’s waist and pulled him closer, kissing his cheek gently. 

 

“You are very small person.” He chuckled, pulling away, drawing the textbook across Damien hip gently, the pages turning at the top corner. 

 

They lay down again, papers strewn across the floor, and bags tossed in the corner of the room. 

 

“You may be a small person, but, you are a lot better at this than me. Help me out, please?” Thorvald nudged Damien gently and then placed his hand on the small of his back tracing patterns with his fingers. “You jogged me.”

 

“You are ridiculous.” Thorvald smirked in that way again and it was as though Damien’s heart was melting from his chest. 

 

“Mmm, okay.” Damien muttered bitterly, upset about his easy defeat. He so easily gave into Thorvald's demands, all he needed to see was the sheepish grin or his lilting eyes gazing into his and it was as like his heart just stopped, like everything stopped to admire him. 

 

Damien shifted his weight onto his forearms and grabbed a pen and Thorvald’s piece of paper and moved his out of the way. 

 

“Due to the atmosphere being different in different places in the solar system, we have to look at the pressure in pascals upon each place and also how many newtons per kilogram squared. We know on earth we just call this general force of gravitation g, but on another planet we actually have to work it out-“ 

 

“You know.” Thorvald said, “Your eyes get really wide and excited whenever you get to explain something to me.” 

 

Damien blush looking away, “I can’t believe you weren’t listening to my explanation.” he mumbled, turning back to the work as he felt his cheeks cool. “I give up, I’ve done physics and maths already and I can’t for the life of me figure out which version of ‘rem’ they want us to use in this translation. Not to mention, you aren’t listening to me. I’m saying I’m done for today.” 

 

It was raining outside and the droplets slithered down the glass on the outside, blurring a grey sky and a view of an ugly hospital building. They were lying on the floor in amongst papers and books and stationary. Damien and Thorvald had just finished doing their homework together. Physics had been hard and mathematics had been harder still and neither of them could figure out how exactly it was that they were meant to translate ‘rem’ in the context. Thorvald was lying in the centre of the room facing the huge glass window leading to a small platform that, if you were willing to climb a bit, made a great makeshift balcony. Damien was lying on him turned on his side, leaning his head against Thorvald chest, listening to the gentle breaths from Thorvald rising chest and also the sound of the DS that he was playing on. Damien shut his eyes, enveloped in quiet and rain and his boyfriend. 

 

"What do your think for a name for my new pet? Monday, apricot, Spock or spooky?" Thorvald mumbled, placing the DS on the floor and pushing it away from himself to grasp Damien's hand and then let go and trace circles and patterns aimlessly across his palms. 

 

Damien looked up, their gazes meeting as he shifted his body so that his chest leant on Thorvald's and his hands drummed a pattern across his collar bones. 

 

"Mm, Monday I think." Damien muttered back sleepily. 

 

He pushed himself forwards and kissed Thorvald softly, feeling the butterflies in his stomach, before he placed his ear back on his chest and listened to the silence, the rain, the DS and his boyfriend breathing. He could feel the tremors that reverberate from his tapping fingers that darted across his shirt and brushed past buttons nonchalantly. 

 

It started raining more heavily and the thunder echoed around and the air was thick. The lightning forked across the sky and the restless sound of duvet’s and blankets and hushed counting between thunder and lightning enlightened the silence in between. The papers were gone and stacked in neat piles and the soft sound of Concerto in D for Violin by Sibelius lingered softly behind the rain and the thunder. 

 

 

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