Roommates - Ch. 26 (April Fool's Special)

Apr 1st, 2016
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  1. Roommates has moved! You can now read it at Archive of Our Own:
  3. Roommates - Ch. 26 (April Fool's Special):
  4. Inspired by Weaver's Five Nights at Freddy's Apartment AU:
  5. Part of an ongoing series written for the /5N@F/ General Discussion Thread at /vg/.
  6. Sincerest thanks to Weaver ( for all of the invaluable assistance in writing, proofreading, and editing this story as well as for illustrating the chapter title cards.
  7. Questions or comments? Drop me an ask at
  9. ---
  11. "He sees us, Mike," Beanie cries out from behind you, clinging to your arm.
  13. You drop to your hands and knees. Both of you are wedged behind a row of arcade games, cramped in the crawlspace between the consoles and the wall, tangled electrical cords and useless plugs strewn beneath you. You're cornered: the only way out is past that thing and you're not going to be fast enough to make it.
  15. You can see it stalking back and forth, catching flickers of movement through the gaps between the games. There's scarcely enough room to move, but you try anyway to crawl backward, tripping over Beanie as your foot catches a stray cord. Stopping, you contort yourself to carefully dislodge it.
  17. There's a terrible clash of metal on metal as the farthest console rocks back against the wall. He hits it again, shattering the display before attacking the next, crashing against them almost rhythmically, tearing through the machinery, coming closer.
  19. "We have to get out, we have to!" you holler, but the panicked cry is of no help; there is no way out. Your arm aches, and you want to sob aloud. Blood soaks through your tattered bandages and it seems as though you can feel it draining out of you.
  21. The console a few feet away crashes against the wall, and you flinch. He's getting closer; you can hear the grinding of gears and the clicking of servos, ever louder. Eyes closed, you can still see the way he looks at you, see the tattered marching-band uniform and exposed metal beneath the synthetic skin.
  23. Suddenly, the console in front of you is wrenched away. It topples over, thrown down like a toy. The power cords beneath your hands and knees are yanked away, and you slip, almost falling. Catching yourself, you look up just in time to see the downward swing of a metal music box...
  27. Breathing heavily, you will your tense frame to decompress as you recline back in your bed. It's always the same dream, even though the details change. Sometimes you're baking a cake or watching cheesy movies in your pajamas with friends, other times you're flirting with familiar strangers or offering up a shoulder to cry on. There's consistency in your dreams, continuity even -- some kind of enduring narrative about moving in and living alongside them.
  29. It's always them, though. Even when you close your eyes to rest, Freddy Fazbear and his companions populate your REM sleep.
  31. Curiously enough, a lot of the little particulars are still recognizable, like Foxy missing an eye and having a hook for a hand. Chica still spends all her time in the kitchen, and Freddy's a hardass as usual. In that regard, it's the same whether they're made from flesh and bone or wire and steel -- some things never change. Strangely, your dreams never seem to involve other humans. The setting and story might shift and change, but the constancy is that you're the lone human in a world full of animal people. They're the same faces you know from work, but they're... different, somehow. Gentler.
  33. Happier.
  35. Even in spite of their hardships and tragedies, they're more pleasant to be around. At your worst you might have arguments or differences of opinion, but you get along. There's never concern of being forcibly stuffed inside a meat grinder of an animatronic costume.
  37. It's time to get up and face the day -- or night, you suppose. You fumble around on the nightstand for your watch -- a cheap little plastic prize with a LCD display and a tight-fitting vinyl strap decorated with the pizzeria's mascots. You obtained it from the arcade as part of your one-year bonus.
  39. Actually, it WAS your one-year bonus.
  41. Holding the cheap piece of garbage up to the trickle of light filtering in through your window, you squint at the screen with bleary, sleep-deprived eyes. If the readout's to be trusted, it's a quarter after eleven.
  43. You're going to be late for work.
  45. The shower water's a little too cold for your liking, but the landlord's too busy drinking your rent money away to be assed to fix the heater. You pull your mostly-clean clothes on, ignoring the stains in the knees of your jeans from where you had to mop up a spill from one of your co-workers last night. Despite what the bottle says, it turns out Clorox isn't as tough on stains as they'd like you to believe.
  47. After dumping the grounds in the trash can, you recycle the coffee filter from your previous shift so that you have enough wake-up juice in your thermos to stay functional tonight. This proves to be a mistake as the bus ride to work is a little bumpier than usual, ensuring that you can add coffee stains to your jeans' ever-growing collection. Piling insult upon injury, the bus driver takes a wrong turn forcing you to walk two extra blocks you otherwise wouldn't have had to.
  49. It's four minutes to midnight when you arrive at Freddy Fazbear's Pizza for your shift.
  51. Checking your surroundings, you allow yourself a few seconds to calm down before you enter the building. You're back in familiar territory once again -- the dense fog of cheese, machine oil and mildew filling your nostrils confirms it. You sprint down the west hall and take a seat at your desk, not even bothering to make your rounds through the building. There's no need to do so; you can monitor everything worth keeping tabs on from your office.
  53. Leaning back in your creaky chair, you listen for the chime to signal the beginning of your shift -- the start of tonight's game. Right now, however, the only sound in the room other than your own labored breathing is coming from the plastic fan on your desk, softly whirring away in a vain attempt to circulate the air in your cramped office. All it's really accomplishing is being a drain on your ever-dwindling supply of electricity.
  55. Midnight hits sooner than you'd like, and the echoing ring of mechanical footfalls signal that naptime's over; playtime has begun.
  57. To your surprise, however, instead of the usual Bonnie it's actually Chica that comes striding towards the security office first. Instinctively, you shut the door before she can make it to your room. She places both of her wings on her hip joints, closing her plastic beak in annoyance. She's not really capable of a pronounced frown, but there's enough articulation in her face to let you know she's not at all pleased with your behavior.
  59. "Mike," Chica whines from the other side of the window, "I didn't even try to get in yet!"
  61. "Just a precaution," you reply dismissively. Chica leans against the glass, tapping it with the tip of her beak. She widens her eyes as much as she can in her best attempt at a puppy-dog stare, but you hold your ground with a tired smile. "Not falling for it."
  63. "What, we can't even talk now?" she asks, pouting. You start to tell her you're not in the mood for her antics tonight, but you cut yourself off. Chica's always been kind of fragile and the last thing you need is her telling off about you to the boss man if your words hit her wrong.
  65. "I don't feel too well tonight," you manage; it's close enough to the truth to be plausible. Her face softens as she moves back a couple of inches from the window.
  67. "Ohhh! Did you eat something that didn't agree with you?" She nods to herself as if she's already deduced what's bothering you. You don't have the heart to tell her that reality's what's got you down. You shake your head politely.
  69. "Not quite," you say. "Just... uh, it's more of a head problem than a, uh, tummy problem."
  71. "Well, why don't you tell big sis Chica all about it," she says sweetly, leaning onto the right-side windowsill. As she does, she seems to notice something on the other side of your office. You turn around and catch sight of a familiar-looking shadow -- one that vaguely resembles a set of long, floppy ears slowly creeping your way.
  73. Chica presses a wingertip to the glass, smiling at you. "Just a moment, Mike."
  75. Marching around your enclosure to the other side, you listen as her footsteps quickly click-clack across the tile floor. Seconds later, there's a ear-piercing digital wail as Bonnie is forcibly yanked from her vantage point behind your left side door. You watch in awe as the shorttank of a chicken carries the screaming, aggravated rabbit under her wing like a recalcitrant toddler before forcibly plopping her on the show stage.
  77. Hurriedly reaching for your tablet, you cut to the stage feed and watch as Bonnie pitches the biggest fit you've ever seen. The sound's cutting out but you can hear her shouting all the way across the restaurant.
  79. "I almost had him!" Bonnie bellows, her voice box's volume cranked all the way to eleven. "You fat chickenshit, it would have been my best time yet! Why didn't you keep to your side?! I'll never have a chance like that again -- he doesn't expect me in the first fifteen minutes!"
  81. Chica says something in frustrated reply, and the two end up bickering back and forth for a few minutes. To your great surprise, Freddy eventually intervenes. Gripping Bonnie's arm, he sternly quiets her down, and the rabbit instantly buckles under his chastisement. This seemingly satisfies Chica as well who leaves her in Freddy's care before returning to your room.
  83. "Sorry about that," she chirps as if nothing happened. "Bonnie's in time-out right now. She won't be bothering you for a while." You glance at the stage camera where Bonnie's sitting on the floor, cross-legged with folded arms. Nodding, you set the camera to Pirate Cove and lower the monitor to talk to Chica again. She just pulled your bacon out of the fryer, so the least you can do is give her the time of day even if she was the one distracting you from Bonnie in the first place.
  85. "I had another dream," you state flatly, reaching towards the desk for your thermos. Chica watches in fascination as you unscrew the cap from the stainless steel container. You pause, raising an eyebrow at her. "What, do you want a cup too?" you joke.
  87. "Why, I would love one!" Chica says obliviously. "We'll have a little tea party -- err, coffee party -- while you tell me all about your dream. Pour me a cup and I'll go get a seat from the dining room!"
  89. You snort as the hen waddles away toward the center of the restaurant. Pulling one of the empty foam cups off of the stack you've got set up on your desk, you fill it up with a small portion of coffee and set it outside for her. A sound not unlike fingernails on chalkboard suddenly fills your eardrums, causing you to nearly spill your coffee on yourself for the second time tonight. Looking at the cameras, you watch as Chica drags a chair all the way back to the east side of your office.
  91. Breaking from his own usual routine, Foxy's watching her from the sidelines with interest. "You need any help there, lass?" he calls out.
  93. "I'm good," she says cheerfully, placing the chair in front of your window. She settles down onto the cushion with a smile, plucking her foam cup off the floor with unusual finesse. Chica's just barely large enough to see over the windowsill, so you're really having a conversation less with her and more with the top half of her head. It's almost like an episode of Home Improvement, but instead of Wilson you're having a heart-to-heart with a bright yellow chicken.
  95. Foxy nods, but you can tell he's a little suspicious as he stalks back in the direction of his tent.
  97. "So, dream," Chica prods, raising her foam cup to her mouth. The coffee dribbles through the gap in her beak, splattering across her thick rubber bib. If she notices, she offers no indication.
  99. "Sure," you reply. "I, uh... mmm. Where to begin..." You warily sneak another glance at the tablet, where Bonnie and Freddy haven't moved an inch. As you do, Chica continues "sipping" at her now-empty cup, not unlike a little girl having a make-believe tea party. You're half-expecting her to pantomime eating a tea biscuit next.
  101. You rub your eyes wistfully. Though the fine details tend to be fleeting, certain moments of your own sleeptime adventures stand out in your memory. You're pretty sure that, not too long ago, you had a dream where you and a flesh-and-blood Chica just sort of... hung out together. It had to do with her wings, you seem to remember. In the dream, Chica was worried about her feathers -- like, maybe she was losing them, or... she had to have them replaced? Something like that.
  103. Although they're all killer robots, this specific one's always seemed a little more benign than the others. Perhaps if you had to die, she'd be more gentle with you. Or maybe she'd rip your eyeballs out of your head like the guy on the phone said would happen. Either's possible.
  105. She still seems nice enough.
  107. "It's probably gonna sound silly," you say, chuckling nervously.
  109. "Dreams aren't silly, they're amazing," she interrupts. "I've never had a dream. I'd like to, though! Bonnie had one once, not too long ago. She still won't tell me what it was about." Robots dreaming? Now there's a thought.
  111. "Well, uh... I've had several of them now. I guess it's called a 'recurring dream', but the events are different each time. The people in the dreams are the same, though," you begin. Chica shifts her weight forward a little in an attempt to get a better view, but all she succeeds in doing is banging her forehead against the window.
  113. "Who's in your dreams?" Chica asks. "Am I there? Is Freddy?"
  115. "You both are, a lot," you answer. "And... Bonnie, and Foxy, and everyone else. Uh... and I do mean everyone. A lot of the animatronics from the other sister locations are there, too."
  117. Her eyes light up a little as she processes this information. "Like... like our replacements?" she asks with a tinny gasp. "Was Toy Chica there?"
  119. "I don't remember one with her," you answer forlornly. "But, uh, the other Chica is there. And... the tall orange one with the broken beak? I remember her, too. And then there's the other Bonnies and Freddys and... even Mangle's there. Both Mangles, actually."
  121. "Even Mangle? Wow," Chica says, simulating breathlessness. She props her head up on her wings as her electronic mind tries to process the weight of what she's hearing. "That's a lot of animatronics. Must be a realllly big pizzeria to have that many shows going at once. Are they all trying to help you into your suit?"
  123. "No," you reply. "The silly part is... they're all, uh, real." She stiffens a little, her lower eyelid twitching up and down.
  125. "Real?" she asks, tone dangerous. You instantly backpedal, raising a hand.
  127. "I mean they're organic," you explain. "You're obviously real, and so am I. I just mean they're like, actual chickens and birds with feathers and fur, and not robot chickens or robot birds with metal parts."
  129. Chica doesn't seem to really understand such a complicated concept, but your explanation seems to calm her down. "I guess," she replies. "What happens in your dreams? Do you all sing on a stage, or...?"
  131. "Nothing like that yet," you admit. "I don't remember too many details. Just that I keep having them. In them we're usually doing simple things like, um... playing games, or going to the store. I baked a cake with you in one, I think, and another time I went to the shopping mall with Bonnie."
  133. "Sounds really nice," Chica says dreamily. "I'd like to go to the shopping mall, but I don't have any money. Plus we're not allowed to leave the building."
  135. You ponder this last statement, rubbing your chin. "That's actually something I've been meaning to ask you. What happens if you try to leave the restaurant?"
  137. "We'd short out, probably," she says, taking another "sip" from her cup. "Or our servos would freeze up. As long as we have a map of wherever we're going, though, our systems will let us move around. We used to not be this way, but there was the, um..." She slams her beak shut sharply for emphasis, and you nod, recalling your predecessor's words.
  139. The Bite.
  141. If you remember the story right, the animatronics used to be allowed to free-roam the pizzeria, but they were tethered to the stage during day performances afterwards. The rules look like they've been relaxed somewhat since, as you remember visiting a few months ago to pick up your paycheck during the daytime and they were tooling around the arcade, but it looks like they still can't leave the perimeter. At least the town's safe.
  143. "So what is it that has you so down, Mike?" Chica asks. "I mean, at least you can come to work and we're all here. You've got us to talk to, don't you?"
  145. "I do," you reply. "And thank you, Chica, for talking with me. I guess I'm just... I dunno. I feel like I'm torn between two worlds, and it's like, when I have these dreams they're so... so vivid that I can't even, um... it's like I can't even realize they aren't dreams. It's like I'm really there and everything's really happening."
  147. The hen nods slowly. "I can see how that'd be frustrating," she says. "Foxy, no, don't. We're having a serious conversation."
  149. You whirl in your chair and see Foxy standing behind you. He instantly backs off, hand and hook raised in surrender. Clearly he isn't wanting the same treatment that Bonnie's currently on the receiving end of.
  151. "That's twice I owe you," you chuckle. Sparing a glance at your power, you sigh. Although talking to Chica has been enjoyable, you kind of wish she'd leave -- keeping the right door shut has been a massive drain on your meter, and as it is you're running dangerously close to the risk of having a staring match with Freddy come six AM.
  153. Perhaps she senses your agitation. With an almost maternal nod, Chica stands up and brushes the coffee off of her bib and onto the floor. "Well, if you ever want to talk about it some more, our office is always open," she giggles. "I'll let the others know to take it easy on you tonight. It's no fun if you're not at your absolute best."
  155. "I appreciate it," you answer with a forced smile. Even at their nicest, they still want to kill you. Hefting her chair, she drags it off into the depths of the dining hall, leaving you alone with your thoughts and a noisy desk fan to keep you company.
  157. True to her word, Chica and the others give you a much easier go of things for the rest of the night. Something's wrong with Bonnie as she doesn't leave the show stage once the entire evening -- not even to go sulk in another room. Nevertheless, despite your best efforts to manage your power, the gas-powered generator runs dry at a quarter till six. As per the usual, Freddy shows up and quietly stands outside your door, hands clasped over his ample belly.
  159. Something's different tonight. The usual music box song he plays is gone, and neither of you speaks for the entire duration of fifteen minutes. You simply stare at each other, and as soon as the time runs out, his normally dour expression gives way to his softer, child-friendly daytime features.
  161. "See you tomorrow, Schmidt," the bear rumbles, tipping his hat at you before trudging off in the direction of the stage. Without thinking, you reach out to grab him by his paw at the last possible second. As if he has eyes in the back of his head, he jerks his hand away before you can make contact, whirling to face you. "Hands off! You know the rules!" he barks.
  163. "Sorry," you stammer. "I just... I have to ask you something."
  165. Fazbear sizes you up for a moment before nodding. "Go on."
  167. You draw a deep breath and contemplate your words carefully before deciding that the simplest question is best.
  169. "Why did you let me go?"
  171. It's Freddy's turn to look contemplative. He straightens his bow tie with care, making sure it's centered perfectly on his stout frame.
  173. "Because this too is a dream," he says. "You don't seriously think we'd be so merciful, do you, Mikey?"
  175. You flinch, taken aback. "What?"
  177. "Mikey?" he repeats somberly. "Mikey?"
  179. "Whab, Frebby?" you ask. Suddenly your tongue doesn't seem to want to work right. "Why'm youcall... maname?"
  181. "Mikey? Wake up, little man."
  185. Your eyes open slowly, but as soon as you see who's in the room with you, you hurry and squeeze them shut, pulling the covers over your face. Your brother's standing over your bedframe, all smiles. "Today's the big day!" he says.
  187. "No, I don't wanna," you mumble. Feels like your mouth's full of sand. Your tongue's dry, and your head hurts. "Lemme sleep."
  189. "Today?!" he asks, still smiling. It's not a nice smile. "Mikey, come on, it's already noon! Don't sleep your whole birthday away! We've got a great party lined up for you over at Fredbear's. You know you've been wanting to go! I overheard you telling mom about it the other night."
  191. "I was telling her I didn't want to go," you whine, trying to pull away from him. He's not having any of it, though, and he grabs you roughly by your wrist to yank you out of bed.
  193. "That's some stinking thinking," Jeremy insists. "Mom's got work today, but don't you worry -- me and my friends are totally willing to make sure you have a great party. Come on, buddy!"
  195. Fighting him's impossible; he's just too strong. You have a really bad feeling about going to Fredbear's today. The nightmares have been getting worse and worse, and it's been hard to stay awake in school. Twice you've gotten sent to the principal's office this week for falling asleep in class. You're pretty sure your report card's going to be full of Fs.
  197. Jeremy gives you just enough time to get dressed before dragging you outside. You don't even get to eat anything before you leave, since he tells mom that you'll "grab a bite" while you're at the arcade. The neighborhood kids point and laugh as he jerks you down the sidewalk, all the way to the restaurant. What's worse, he invites them all, insisting that games and rides are "on him" for the day as his present to you.
  199. The arcade's packed full of screeching, laughing, running children. They're jumping and playing on the game machines and waving tickets and plush toys as Freddy and his friends walk around, playing their songs. You finally jerk away from Jeremy as soon as you're inside, running as fast as you can for the cover of one of the tables in the dining room. He calls out to you, but you do what you can to lose him in the blinding, flashing mess of lights and loud music.
  201. You don't want to play any video games. You don't want to eat any greasy pizza or drink any sugary soda. You don't want to get your fingers pinched in a stupid Spring Bonnie doll. You don't care if everyone here laughs and makes fun of you and calls you names.
  203. The only gift you want for your birthday is for today to be over as soon as possible.
  205. Moving from table to table, you try your best to stall Jeremy out until he gets bored of chasing you down. Then you'll slip out the back exit -- the fire exit, if you have to -- and run as fast as you can to hide outside. Once you're out of the arcade you can just hide out for a few hours and then everything will be okay. Hide and survive.
  207. Just like in your nightmares.
  209. You manage to give him the slip for a while, but you don't even make it to 12:30 before he recruits his dumb friends to move in on you. Like a SWAT team in the movies, they close in on you with their ugly masks. You're too busy looking for your brother that you didn't watch your back.
  211. "Wow, your brother is kind of a baby isn't he?" Scott asks, adjusting his Bonnie mask.
  213. Jeremy laughs, wiping pizza sauce on his shorts. "It's hilarious."
  215. "Terrified of the animatronics, I take it?" You don't know who the girl wearing Chica's head is, but you already hate her. You hate everyone here, actually. Tears won't stop streaming down your face as you wipe your nose and eyes on the back of your sleeve.
  217. "Why don't we help him get a closer look?" Jeremy asks, laughing. "He'll LOVE it."
  219. "No! Please!" you shout, trying to get the attention of one of the employees. They're too busy dealing with other hollering kids to even pay attention to you.
  221. Jeremy grabs you by one of your arms before you can get your feet under you. "Come on guys, let's give this little man a lift. He wants to get up close and personal!" Scott realizes what his brother's up to faster than you do and grabs your other arm. Jeremy's already six years older than you are, so it only takes the two of them to completely subdue you. You begin to cry and wail hysterically as you realize they're taking you right towards what you saw the other day.
  223. "No! I don't want to go!" you scream as loud as you can, but the stage music is drowning you out. Laughing all the way as they carry you up to the stage, Jeremy holds your hand in the air triumphantly as you kick and struggle.
  225. Fredbear and Spring Bonnie loom over you in all of their menacing, awful glory. They're nothing like the adorable stuffed animals the Puppet gives out from the prize counter -- instead of cute little teddy bears and bunny rabbits, they're horrible, jerky machines that flail and spasm. Fredbear's leading in a song as Spring Bonnie strums along on her red guitar, but you don't feel like singing along. The girl in the Chica mask and whoever's wearing Freddy's face all share a laugh as the enormous yellow bear's head jolts up and down like a trash compactor.
  227. "You heard the little man! He wants to get even closer!" he says. "Guys, I think the little man said he wants to give Fredbear a BIG kiss!"
  229. Your eyes go wide as saucers, and you furiously try to swing your weight away from them.
  231. "On THREE! One... two..." Jeremy counts. Before you know it, your entire head is inside Fredbear's mouth, and you're doing everything you can to shake loose. Jeremy's friends are in stitches as they laugh at your humiliating predicament.
  233. Unfortunately, there's a special moment in Fredbear's "Smiling Song" -- and that's when he goes for the big smile as a finish. Only now, he can't smile because your head's in the way. The safety mechanisms in Fredbear's mouth snap in half causing his mouth to collapse in on you, crushing the side of your face. You cry bloody murder, and this time, everyone in the restaurant can hear you.
  235. Jeremy's not laughing any more.
  237. The pizzeria falls quiet as your blood drips down Fredbear's golden costume. You collapse to the floor, all fifty pounds of you smashing into the tile. A woman's voice overhead shouts out Jeremy's name. You watch out of your still-functional eye as Mangle lowers herself from the ceiling.
  239. "Jeremy, you rotten child!" she declares. Your brother pulls his Foxy mask off in tearful shock as she slithers toward you, cradling your head in her good arm. "How dare you!"
  241. "M-Mangle, I..." He has no words as she glares daggers into him. It's obvious from her anguished expression that she's disgusted with him.
  243. "Oh, you NAUGHTY boy," she seethes. "How dare you let Fredbear have all of him and not save a bite for me?" Mangle asks right before plunging her teeth into the side of your skull.
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