Distractions were fairly easy to come by when it came to the interior of Doc Worth's office.
This was something Hanna's zombie companion found himself becoming progressively grateful for, as the weeks rolled by and he ended up spending a lot more time in that office than he would have liked. Hanna once made a cheery remark about these being 'social visits', but in his friend's humble opinion such visits generally shouldn't have involved things like Hanna bleeding all over the floor. And the visits did tend to revolve around this, whether it was due to the latest collateral damage from one of the redhead's cases or simply because of his rather stunning ability to get himself injured doing seemingly simple tasks. Between things like the run-in with that troll under the bridge and Hanna's regular trips down the stairs, the twenty-four year old and his companion tended to find themselves in Worth's office at least once a week.
Therefore things like the series of curses were essentially routine by this point, as was Worth's standard demand that the zombie haul a bleeding Hanna into the back room. Then came the growls that the zombie should either get the hell out or find something to occupy himself with so he'd stop hovering like some sort of undead mother hen, which was what had lead to the zombie seeking out distractions. Fortunately for him, Worth's office was indeed full of such things. There was that poor abused plant beside Worth's desk that had kept the zombie occupied through most of what sounded like a rather painful impromptu surgery, the various stains that one could spend hours contemplating, the rather compelling contents of several cabinets that Worth was too lazy to close and then, of course, there was the book shelf.
Admittedly, when he'd first discovered the shelf in question, the zombie was surprised to find it even existed. It was a rickety, somewhat terrifying thing that was missing a shelf and a half and looked as if it had been dragged from a dumpster... and knowing Worth, it probably had been. This seemed fitting enough when compared to the other mismatched decor of Worth's office, but it was still odd when one considered what it was. Conrad had been the one to voice that surprise on one of their many visits, which lead to a growl from Worth and a comment that had been somewhere along the lines of "What, didja think reading was only for gayass yuppies like you?". The ensuing argument had probably been of the typical fare between the two of them, but the zombie had been too engrossed in the contents of the bookshelf to care.
There had been the magazines, among them several old Highlights for Kids from the 90s, porn magazines (which were really rather tame when he considered the man that owned them), and oddly enough what appeared to be a rather extensive and up to date collection of Cosmo. There had also been one issue of Seventeen, which Worth cheerily offered to Conrad ("It has fashion an' that sort of shit, ya can learn new ways to style your hair to impress all the boys, Fagula!") only to have it shoved away. Then there had been the medical books, some of which looked official enough while others (Backyard Surgery For Dummies and Making The Most of Your Shady Drug Dealings In A Shittyy Economy ) were a bit more concerning. There were also the classics, things like Animal Farm, Pride and Prejudice, The Grapes of Wrath(Conrad recognized this copy from his own apartment and proceeded to accuse Worth of stealing, though these accusations fell on suddenly deaf ears) and a whole slew of books one wouldn't expect to find on Worth's shelf. In all, it was an impressive find, and it gave the undead man something to look at while attempting to tune out Hanna's yelps of pain. So as their visits grew in number, the zombie found himself returning to the bookshelf and thumbing through various selections in an attempt to find something he hadn't read.
This was what he'd been doing when he discovered the thing. Grayish green fingers had been making their way through aged tomes yet again, brushing against abused spines as orange eyes squinted at the titles. He paused when he spotted something he hadn't seen before, however. The spine of the book was intact, which was weird enough, but that was nothing when he considered the floral print on the side. Placed upon the top shelf and hidden in the farthest corner, it was almost invisible, but now that he'd spotted it he was beginning to wonder how he'd missed such a thing. Raising an eyebrow, the zombie reached up to grab the object in question.
His confusion only doubled when he brought the book down and got a proper look at the cover. The image seemed to be of some sort of puppy with the widest, most horrifyingly adorable eyes the zombie had ever seen. The eyes actually reminded him of Hanna's, down to the exact freakishly bright shade of blue. The whole thing looked as if it would be better suited in the room of a twelve-year old girl as opposed to a cranky backalley doctor's office... so what was it doing here? Intrigued, the zombie opened the book.. and then found himself feeling very, very confused.
Apparently this book was a photo collection of some sort. This in itself was somewhat odd, since Worth did not strike him as the type to keep such things. Stranger still was the fact that these pictures were all photos of Hanna, and upon further inspection, they all seemed to be photographs of him in various states of injury. The zombie's brow furrowed as he thumbed through the pages of the book, catching sight of what looked like Hanna with broken kneecaps, missing teeth, burnt fingers, and what appeared to be Worth cheerily holding up one of his kidneys. Glitter and Lisa Frank stickers (mostly the shiny dolphin and unicorn ones) helped to complete the strange image.
"Oh, hey, I see you found the scrapbook!"
Lamont's voice would have made the zombie jump had he been the type to do so. However, he wasn't, so he went for the ever stunning single blink of surprise as he glanced back at the man in question. Lamont was grinning even as he stumbled a bit under the weight of the boxes in his arms. They looked appropriately suspicious, and the zombie decided to pretend he hadn't seen the hand poking out of one of them. "Yeah, there's a story behind that one. Originally we just got it from Wal-Mart as a gag since Worth said the front looks just like Hanna, but then there was the whole incident with the lawn mower..." The dark-haired man snickered at the memory as he set down the boxes.
"Lawn mower?" The zombie repeated, looking quite confused.
"Yeah, it should be on the first page. Worth liked to save the more spectacular ones for the back and uses the stickers to rate them. The best ones get the unicorns," Lamont gestured as he made his way over to the zombie, pausing at the undead man's side so he could look at the book as well. "No, no, that's the whole mess with the spaghetti-- oh, oh, man I remember this one, wait a sec!" The dealer tapped the zombie on the shoulder, forcing him to stop so he could properly gape at the image of Hanna with his face stuck in the broken remnants of a computer screen. Wires were poking out of the machine and Hanna's legs were stuck high in the air, characteristic checkered vans seemingly sparking due to electricity.
"Awww, man, that was the day we went to the Apple Store!" Lamont grinned as he reached out to poke the picture in question. "See, you can tell because the computer monitor's so damn thin, heheheheh."
The zombie's brow furrowed as he stared at the picture. "And... how did this happen?"
Lamont's face seemed to light up at the opportunity to tell the story. "Oh man, you don't even know. See, we went in there because Worth was drunk and he fucking hates Macs and-- ahahahah... hahaahha... oh God..." The dealer had burst into laughter again. He then reached for the scrapbook, gently taking it from the zombie's hands as if it were sacred. "D-do you mind? Ahahaha... hey Worth, you've gotta see this!" He called out as he made his way to the back room, scrapbook in hand.
"Damnit Lamont, can't ya see I'm fuckin' working here!?" Worth snapped as the door slammed open, pulling just a bit too hard on the last of Hanna's stitches. "And stop slamming my Goddamn doors already, Jesus fucking Christ!"
"Ow!" Hanna winced in pain, though his face broke into a grin as Lamont walked in. "Lamont, hey! What's--" He paused, his electric blue eyes lighting up as he caught sight of the object in the dealer's hands. "Ohmanohman is that the scrapbook!?" He exclaimed, jolting up from his seat. He immediately tried to spin around to face Lamont, which proved to be a bad idea since there was still a thread being pulled through his skin. "I-- ah, ow!"
"I wasn't done yet, you little prick!" Worth snapped, tugging even harder on the needle. He then looked to Lamont in the doorway, raising a brow. "And where'd ya find that? I coulda sworn we lost it..."
"It's not exactly hard to lose stuff in this mess," Lamont scoffed as he made his way over, waving a bit as Hanna attempted to turn to him. "And Hanna, stay still before Worth stabs you again, please."
The redhead flashed a sheepish grin as he shifted on the metal table. "Sorry," He said as he stretched forward in an attempt to get a look at the scrapbook. "Seriously though, where'd you find it? Last I checked, it had vanished into the landfill-- ooooowwww Worth stop that!"
"Stop whining like a fucking pussy," Worth scowled. "The stitches are done, ain't they?"
Hanna's zombie friend winced as he heard Hanna's whine of pain, poking his head into the doorway. Maybe they should have waited until later to provide ways for Hanna to get himself injured yet again. "I found it on the book shelf," He explained as he made his way across the grime-coated floor.
"Huh. Forgot I had that," Worth muttered as he tied off Hanna's stitches. He set the needle and scissors down, then reached out to snatch the scrapbook from Lamont. He got a page in before his face broke into a yellow-toothed grin. "Aw man, it's the trip to the Fag store!" He exclaimed as he pointed to the picture in question.
"Yeeeaaaah. Remember how Hanna pissed off all the little white nerds at the Genius Bar?" Lamont snickered as he leaned against the table.
"I was just trying to get them to answer my question!" Hanna pouted as he swung his legs over the edge of the table, folding his arms before him. "Worth's the one that antagonized them and made them throw me into a computer monitor."
Worth gave a snort as he reached into his pocket for his standard crumpled packet of cigarettes. "N' my fault. 'Sides, they needed a blow to their pretentious egos. Bastards think they're so much better because their computers are shiny and white and have like two damn buttons and cost a million bucks and don't do shit." He grumbled. The vehemence in his voice was mildly terrifying, as if he were describing some terrible monster that had murdered his entire family as opposed to overly expensive computers.
Lamont snickered. "Yeah, yeah, you're just mad because they wouldn't give you the free iPod," He drawled as he glanced over at Worth and arched a brow.
"Fuck off. I dun' need their fuckin' shiny, gayass fag COMMUNIST charity!" Worth spat as he pulled out a slightly bent cigarette, then lit it.
"Communist?" The zombie repeated as he tried to peer around the three of them to look at the picture in question. He was having trouble, however, as the trio was seemingly too wrapped up in reminiscing.
"Oh man, remember when they all tried to pull me out of the monitor?" Hanna put in excitedly, a wide grin on his face. "It took the whole Genius Bar to do it!"
Worth let out another snort at this. "Yeah, that's cause they're all nearly as skinny and nerdy as you, dumbass," He said as he elbowed Hanna a bit too hard in the side, then flipped the page. The instant he saw the image, his face broke into an even wider grin than before. "'Ey, it's that time we took ya bowling and you got your fingers stuck in the ball!"
"Oh yeah!" Hanna grinned. "And then I got stuck in the loading mechanism for the pins and they had to call the fire department and then we couldn't get the bowling ball off of my fingers so you pulled out the chainsaw!" He threw back his head and laughed as he kicked his feet in the air, clearly amused by the memory.
The zombie frowned as this time he did manage to catch sight of the image in question. Hanna was beaming and flashing a thumbs up at the camera, his horrifyingly bright bowling shirt only adding to the general dorkiness of it all. Worth was indeed standing over him with a chainsaw, a terrible grin on his face as he revved it in the air. The bottle of vodka on the table did not inspire confidence. "I wasn't aware you had a chainsaw," He muttered.
Worth glanced at the zombie and shrugged. "'Course I have a chainsaw. What kind of self-respectin' doctor doesn't have motherfucking power tools?"
"Ones that actually finished med school?" Lamont put in with a smirk.
He got a punch to the shoulder for the comment, but judging from his laughter Lamont didn't really care. Hanna ignored their standard bickering, reaching over Lamont's shoulder and flipping through a few more pages. Upon reaching the back his eyes lit up. "Oh my God it's the flipbook!"
"Flipbook?" His undead friend repeated, eyes widening a fraction.
"Oh man, seriously? I thought you were joking about that," The dealer said as he squinted down at the page.
Worth shook his head. "When you gonna fuckin' learn that when I say I'll do something, I'm gonna do it? Honestly, this thing's m' pride and joy," He huffed as he reached down to grab the edge of the little booklet that had been glued to the inside of the scrapbook. He flipped through it, revealing the image of Hanna beaming and waving from the top of a flight of stairs. The redhead waved, took a step forward, then tripped on his own shoelaces.
"Oooh!" The trio tried out as one as they watched Hanna take a rather fantastic faceplant down the stairs.
"Aw man, that looks like that hurt," Lamont snickered.
"It did!" Hanna sounded far too happy about this as he bounced up and down on the table. "Man Worth, that was great. How'd you do that!?"
"Well, if I told you it wouldn't be fuckin' secret anymore, now would it?" Worth said as they got to end of the flipbook and were graced with the final image of Hanna flashing a bloodied grin. "Aaaannnd that's the day we decided to add shoelaces to the List of Things Hanna Can't Have Because He's a Dumbass!" The doctor declared, a note of rather worrying pride in his voice.
"There's a list?" Hanna's zombie friend put in, brow furrowing.
Lamont's eyebrows rose. "You didn't know about the list? Seriously?"
"That so?" Worth quirked a brow, then looked to Hanna. "Interesting... thought for sure the little bastard'd mention the list," He growled, dark eyes narrowing as he flicked a bit of ash from his cigarette. "What with you livin' with him and all."
Hanna's mouth immediately spread into a wide, sheepish grin and he fidgeted in his seat. "Errrr, I... forgot?" He chirped, his expression similar to that of a child who had conveniently forgotten to remind their babysitter that they weren't allowed to have cookies after seven.
"Uh huh. Pretty damn convenient amnesia you've got there, brat," Worth grumbled as he flipped to the back of the scrapbook. He then proceeded to grab the piece of paper stuck at the back and pulled it out, revealing it was actually a fold-out that was roughly six sheets of paper in length. "Christ, this thing needs its own damn book," He muttered as he handed the list to Hanna's zombie friend.
The zombie frowned as he took the list and began to glance over it, first eyeing the hastily scrawled title in what appeared to be Worth's positively horrendous handwriting. The things written below it came in a variety of sizes and shapes, some in Lamont's cursive (which was so small and scribbly it was nearly impossible to tell what he'd actually written) while others were written so messily that the zombie was sure the doctor had been drunk at the time. Then there were the blood splatters and places where things had been scribbled out, adding to the sheer mess of the thing. In spite of all this, however, the undead man found he was still able to make out quite a bit of the list.
"'Hanna is not allowed to drive, ever'," He read aloud. "No automatic can openers, no hot peppers, no 'Goddamn fucking ghosts', no shoelaces, no getting anywhere near an oven or a microwave without anyone else around, no coffee under any circumstances, no lighters... no mechanical toothbrushes?" He quirked a brow at this, glancing over at the paranormal investigator.
Hanna grinned sheepishly. "Er.... there was an... incident," He said slowly. "It's really too bad, the toothbrush made race car noises and everything..."
Lamont snickered as he glanced over the list as well. "And you wonder why people think you're twelve... hey, did you scribble out the one about skateboards?"
"You did, didn't you? Nice try, fucker. I'd better see it back in there the next time I check that damned list or you're gonna be sorry," Worth snorted, though he seemed too engrossed in the scrapbook to actually do anything about it for the moment. "Ooh, here's a good one! 'S that time you got your leg caught on escalator!"
"Hey, you're right!" Hanna said excitedly as he tried to peer over Worth's shoulder.
Lamont glanced over as well, then gave a low whistle. "Man, look at all that blood."
"I told you to respect the fucking escalator," The doctor muttered as he elbowed Hanna sharply in the side. "Dumbass." Hanna, of course, just laughed.
The zombie glanced up from the list (He really did wonder what the story was behind 'no plush ducks') to watch the three of them. He had to admit, the laughter over Hanna's misfortune did make him feel a tad concerned. He supposed he could be a tad overprotective at times, but a scrapbook? Really? However, as he watched the three of them laugh over the various photos, he couldn't help but smile.
Was it twisted and terribly dysfunctional? Certainly. In fact, those things were practically a given when it came to Worth and Lamont. But he supposed he couldn't see the two of them making a scrapbook for anyone else, so in a strange way it almost seemed vaguely affectionate. And of course, there was the list, which seemed quite extensive. Granted, if he mentioned it, he was sure Worth would just insist it was because he found the images of Hanna suffering impossibly hilarious and he was sick of having to deal with certain injuries. Perhaps that was true too.... but the polaroid he'd just found tucked into the list in his hands told a different story.
The picture in question was terribly worn and covered in fingerprints, as if it had been handled often. It depicted Lamont and Worth sitting on a couch, Hanna poking his head between them and beaming. Worth gestured angrily as if he were trying to shove the camera away, and of course Lamont was laughing hysterically beside him. Upon turning the picture over, Hanna appeared to have scribbled something onto the back in his untidy scrawl.
'Hey Worth! I know you might just throw this away but I thought it was a funny picture. You had red eye and look like you're going to eat the camera, haha! Man your teeth are gross. ANYWAY seriously, thank you for everything. -- Hanna'
The zombie shook his head as he glanced from the photo to the trio looking over the scrapbook. Hanna really did have a talent for finding the strangest people and adopting them whether they liked it or not... and really, when it came down to it, that seemed to be what had happened here. Lamont and Worth were the closest thing Hanna had to family.. and who was the zombie to question that?
"'Ey look, it's that time you got into my personal files and Snapper got your finger!"
"I said I was sorry!"
Although, he had to admit, as he saw Worth flip a page and snicker at the image of Hanna stuck inside a washing machine, he was kind of grateful Hanna was in slightly more caring hands these days.