Title: Sleep to Dream
Author: Ann Valentine
Rating: PG
Pairing: Eventual Specs/OC
Status: WIP
Feedback: YES! Please!
Archive: My site, lumos et nox (lumosetnox.envy.nu); Seize the Night; Slashyways
Summary: Specs and Dutchy stumble upon a girl in an alley, but is she all that she seems?
Disclaimer: Disney owns the boys, I don't.  I do, however, own Slash/Aidan Connolly.  Stage came up with the name Alexander Durecht.
Notes: The little song that Specs sings when he's kicking the door of the Lodging House is to "I've Been Working on the Railroad."  Enjoy!


Sleep to Dream
Part the First

"Yeah, so then this guy, he grabs me by the back of the shirt and goes, 'I don't see anything about a fire on here!' I think, 'Oh m'Gawd, I'm caught!' So I go--and lemme tell ya, Cowboy would've been proud--'On page nine, sir, gotta go!' Then I jerk away from him and run like hell.  Best part was, the guy gave me ten cents and didn't get his change."  Dutchy grinned and jingled the change in his pockets.
"Dutchy!" Specs said, the scolding tone in his voice offset by the grin on his face. "That's awful!"
"You can't be lily-white and live," Dutchy replied cheerfully.  " 'Sides, he was rich, he ain't gonna miss a dime."
"Dutchy, Dutchy, Dutchy.  What am I going to do with you?"
Dutchy remained silent.  Specs glanced over at the blonde, seeing that he was frowning and glancing around for something.
"Hey, Specs . . . you hear that?"
"Hear what?"
The two boys stopped and Specs strained his ears.  Suddenly, the noise became quite audible to him.  Someone nearby was breathing heavily, and every once in a while there was a soft sob. 
"What is that?"
"Let's check it out."  
Moving on cats' feet, Specs and Dutchy padded to the location of the sound and peered into the alleyway.  Specs gasped and Dutchy jerked away from the sight. 
A girl knelt in the alleyway, her hands covered in blood. There were dark red streaks along her forehead where she had apparently wiped her forehead and smeared blood across the skin.  Blood stained her dress and pooled in the uneven covering of the ground.  However, it was not all the blood that disturbed the newsboys.
It was the dead body she was straddling and the knife in its chest. 
At their arrival, the girl looked up at them with dull green eyes.  Absently, she raised a hand and pushed a lock of auburn hair out of her face, further staining her forehead.  She blinked, swayed, and fainted.
"H-holy crap!" Dutchy finally managed to say.  "We-we gotta call the bulls!" He grabbed Specs' hand and began dragging him away.
"But what about the--?"
"If the cops see us with the girl, it won't matter if we didn't do nothin'! They're gonna think we helped her!"
"Hold it!" Specs yanked against Dutchy's hand and pulled away.  "I'm going to go back and help her.  Give me enough time to get her away from there, then call the bulls."
Dutchy stared at Specs, then shook his head.  "That's a really stupid plan." 
"I know, but we can't just leave her there!"
"Someday that big heart of yours is gonna get you killed.  Well, what are you waiting for? Go! I'm giving you a ten minute head start, then I'm calling the bulls." 
"Right."  Specs began jogging back to the alleyway, then stopped and waved.  "Thanks!" With that, he ducked into the alley. 
"Yeah, save your thanks," Dutchy muttered, waving vaguely in the direction his friend had gone.  "Clock's ticking."  Specs reappeared, carrying the girl, and began sprinting back towards the lodging house. 

At the lodging house, Specs arrived only to realize that he had absolutely no way of letting the others know that he was there.  Carefully shifting his burden, he began kicking the door rhythmically. 
"Open up the stupid door/'Cause it's cold out here/Open up the stupid door/Or I'll kick your rear/I'll stay out here keepin' kicking/Until early in the morn/Can't you hear my endless kickin'/OPEN THE GODDAMN DOOR!" As he sang the last few words, the door opened and Snipeshooter stared at him.
"Whatcha got there?" he asked curiously. 

"A girl Dutchy and I found in the alley.  Now move it."  Gesturing with his head for the younger boy to move aside, Specs entered the lodging house and headed for the sick room.  "Get Kloppman!" he yelled as an afterthought. 

After setting the girl down, Specs stepped aside to let Kloppman look her over.

"Dutchy and I found her like this in the alley," he explained.  "I didn't get a chance to look her over for wounds."

The lodging house owner chased him out, telling him that a man couldn't work with someone hovering over his shoulder.  Once he was alone, Kloppman began to work. 

He checked her for obvious wounds first, feeling extremely baffled when he found nothing. 

/Why is she covered in blood if she ain't hurt?/

Kloppman hitched her skirt up as much as he dared, seeing no wounds on her legs either.  /Okay, this is getting extremely weird./

Swallowing, he reached out to unbutton her shirt, frowning at the feel of her chest.  It didn't feel . . . right.  Opening the girl's shirt, he gasped and then had to choke back laughter. 

The girl Specs had found wasn't a girl.

She was a man.

With cantaloupes in her corset.

Continue to part 2...