Fandom: Huckleberry Finn
Title: Tellin’ Stretchers
Author: Me, Kaos
Disclaimer: Fact: I don’t own them.
Summary: Huck tells more stretchers that finally catch up with him.
Notes: I realise this place is a little dead but I just thought I'd post it here anyway...Just a short little piece of work that I wrote while I was bored lol
Huck sighed as he reached a hand up, wiping at the sweat that persistently rolled off his forehead and down his face, causing him to feel uncomfortably and terribly warm.
He held onto the saucepan in front of him, watching the watery stew with mild distaste, wishing the nausea that had been creeping up on him for days would leave him alone so he could get on with his job of helping his best friend get to Cairo.
“How’s supper comin’ along Huck?” A deep voice called from the top of the raft as Huck raised his head to look into the caring eyes of the handsome, black runaway slave.
“It’s comin’ along just fine Jim,” Huck nodded, faking a smile to put his friend off his discomfort. His head was pounding and his eyes were becoming ever more sensitive to the light so for once he was glad that night was upon them.
He stretched his legs out in front of him, mentally groaning at the ache that was coming from them - he had sat in one position for far too long. He would never get used to not being able to move about freely.
He looked up when Jim deposited himself down beside him, smiling tiredly at him.
“You okay Huck?” Jim asked softly, raising an eyebrow when the youth looked startled.
“Sure I am Jim,” Huck nodded, dropping his eyes to the floor of the raft, “Why wouldn’t I be?”
“Jest ‘cause…well…you ain’t lookin’ so good,” Jim pointed out as he reached forward, attempting to place his hand on Huck’s forehead.
Huck effectively dodged him and fell off his seat, landing with a loud groan on the hard raft.
“You okay Huck?” Jim asked hurriedly, rushing to help Huck up.
“Jest fine Jim,” Huck breathed out, clutching his stomach in obvious pain. Jim was lost - he wanted to help Huck but knew that his small friend wouldn’t let him.
Huck let out another groan as he double up, a short, sharp spasm of pain flashing through his stomach. He stumbled over towards the side of the raft and emptied his stomach, tears of pain slowly running down his flushed cheeks.
Jim didn’t care anymore and ran over to help his friend, rubbing his back and pushing his hair out of his face.
“What have I told you ‘bout them stretchers?” Jim joked softly. Huck coughed and looked up at him, wiping at his mouth with his filthy sleeve.
“Shut up Jim,” he smiled weakly, nearly collapsing before Jim caught him under his arms and sat him down on his chair.
“How long you been feelin’ sick Huck?” Jim asked, grabbing a blanket from inside the tiny tent and wrapping it around his friend’s trembling shoulders.
Huck shrugged softly, “A few days,” he stuttered, biting his lip and pulling the blanket closer to his body.
“…And you didn’t tell me? Why Huck?” Jim questioned him, confused and hurt that Huck would hide something so serious from him.
“I didn’t want you to worry…besides, we gots to be near Cairo by now, I figured I could hold out ‘til then,” Huck nodded proudly before shrinking under Jim’s effective glare.
“Of all the stupid-” Jim stopped himself, pacing the length of the small raft, his arms folded about his chest.
“Huck, how could you keep something’ like that from me? I thought we was friends,” Jim sighed, sitting down beside the exhausted boy.
“We-we are friends Jim,” Huck spoke softly, so soft that Jim strained to hear it over the water they were on.
“Well Huck, friends don’t keep stuff from each other…especially if one of ‘em is sick,” Jim explained, reaching out and touching Huck’s forehead, shaking his head at the heat that was coming from it.
Huck let his head fall forward, feeling guilty that he hadn’t told his friend that he wasn’t feeling well.
“C’mon then, bed. You need to keep up your strength if’n we’re to make it to Cairo at all,” Jim told him, helping him lie down on the wood and covering him tightly with the blanket to prevent him from getting a chill that would make him worse.
“I’m real sorry Jim,” Huck whispered, gazing up at his friend with big blue eyes, brimming with tears.
“Aww, it’s alright Huck,” Jim smiled gently, brushing the unruly hair back from the boy’s forehead. “I know what you was tryna do.”
Huck smiled his thanks as best be could before closing his eyes, the gently swaying of the raft helping him fall into sleep.
Jim smiled at the innocent, sleeping face before getting up and walking back over to where his seat was. Glancing back, he was glad that Huck had come with him.
He had learned more in the last few weeks than he ever had, and probably ever would.