Fandom: Professor Layton
Characters: Luke, Layton
Prompt: #60: drink
Word Count: 1829 words
Author's Notes: I do not own Professor Layton or his Top Hat of Awesome.
Summary: Luke's starting university, and experiencing everything that goes along with it.
When the day finally came that a very grown-up Luke Triton was prepared to enter university and begin working towards his chosen career path, a very proud Professor Layton sat down with his protégé to discuss some very important things about university life.
First off, Professor Layton said, your studies must come first. Secondly, I expect you to be a gentleman for the most part. Thirdly, you are going to have a great deal more freedom, so please be careful. Finally, I think it best if you live on campus. One can only get the true university experience if one is residing in the hellholes known as dormitories amidst hundreds of other noisy, badly-behaving students.
Luke listened to the Professor's lecture solemnly as his eighteen year old ears translated the Professor's words.
First of all, you should probably pay attention to some of that boring stuff at some point or another. Secondly, there will be girls there, and it would be nice if you at least attempted to behave yourself, not that I'll actually know whether you do or not. Thirdly, go nuts and have fun. Finally, you're moving into a place where having a blast and making trouble is almost a requirement, and you should probably attempt to maximize your true university experience.
If Layton was surprised at how well Luke seemed to be taking this talk and how enthusiastically he agreed, he did not voice his surprise.
Plans were made, and when the big day finally came, Luke was ecstatic to be moving into the dorms and out from under the Professor's roof. As he pointed out to a still-concerned Professor, they were in the same city. It wasn't like he was that far away, and if he got homesick, he could easily pop in for a visit. But the Professor was not allowed to "check up on him." That was a no-no.
Layton tried very hard not to feel that there was anything ominous in those words. When his apprentice was all squared away, he left Luke in the dormitories, already engaged in animated conversation with the two young men in the room across the hall. He heard the word "baseball" as he slipped down the stairs and back out to the Laytonmobile.
And so it came to pass that Luke began his university career at Layton's own Gressenhauller U.
When a loud ringing sound cracked through the otherwise silent night at three AM (give or take a few minutes), Layton was jolted out of a particularly restful sleep. After sitting up and glancing back and forth whilst muttering something about pineapples (no, he didn't know where it came from), he realized that the ringing was neither his alarm clock nor a siren, but the phone.
He stumbled to his feet and walked to the phone, stifling a yawn with one hand and threading the other hand through hair that was suffering from a rather severe case of bedhead. Not that it mattered how he looked. The person on the other end of the line couldn't actually see him. But it was the principle of the thing.
Yawning one more time, he picked up the receiver and put it to his ear. "'lo?" Let it never be said that Professor Hershel Layton was a morning person. At least not at three o'clock in the morning.
"Hi, Professor!" Luke's baritone cheered from the other end of the line. He punctuated the greeting with a small giggle.
"Luke, what is it?" Layton asked, confused. Luke sounded strange, like something was off. But his sleep-fogged mind was having difficulty pinning down what exactly that odd note in Luke's voice was. He knew that it was something he could identify, but…
"Professor, the room is spinnin'. How do I make't stop?" Luke slurred.
That was when Layton's mind finally drank its mental coffee and woke up. "Luke, my boy, are you drunk?"
"Noooo…" Luke said. "…maybe."
Layton was silent for a moment.
Luke took the opportunity to once again ask his question. "Professor, the room's spinnin'. I'm gettin' dizzy. Make't stop?"
Contrary to popular belief, Layton had been young once upon a time and had, at one point or another, gone a wee bit overboard. But once was enough for him to learn his lesson on that particular front. Still, he knew a few things about Luke's current predicament. Sighing, he leaned against the wall. "Try putting one foot on the floor to steady yourself."
He heard shuffling. Then Luke slurred at him again. "I got one foot on th'floor, and one on th'wall. S'not helping."
Layton sighed again. "Then try putting both feet on the floor."
There was a pause before Luke spoke again. "…but then won' I be standin'?"
Layton gave up. "Tell the room to stop, and go to sleep."
It had been a silly misstep, just a moment of poor timing combined with bad luck whilst on an otherwise uneventful investigation, but it had resulted in Layton crashing headfirst into a wall. The resulting blow had actually rendered the Professor momentarily unconscious. When he had opened his eyes, he had been lying half on his side and half on his back, his vision blurred and unfocused.
All he had really wanted to do was close his eyes and go right back to sleep, but the emergency personnel who had been on the scene had strong advised against that. He had been taken to the nearest hospital, where he had kept dozing off, only to be prodded awake every short while to answer questions about his name, his date of birth, and the capital of Japan. Someone contacted Luke (possibly a next of kin thing, which did absolutely nothing to ease Layton's aching mind), and his young apprentice came to see him.
Finally, he was permitted to go home with instructions to rest and not do anything too strenuous for several days. He sent Luke back to the university, insisting that he would be fine and Luke had his own responsibilities to attend to. The young man seemed skeptical, but he acquiesced. When he arrived at the safety of his home, he stumbled up the stairs and crashed into bed, pausing only long enough to remove his hat, coat, and shoes. He was asleep before his head landed somewhere in the general vicinity of his pillow.
It was some time later that he was awakened by the phone ringing. The sound was like a railroad spike going straight through his ears. He managed to lurch to the phone, and after a moment of fumbling, picked it up and managed a greeting.
Luke's voice cheered at him from the other end of the phone. "Life is lifey, wind is breezy, and you're brain-damaged!"
Layton hung up the phone and went back to bed.
As the end of the semester arrived and the winter holiday drew close, Layton came up to help his apprentice move back home for the break. He arrived at the dorm and knocked on the door. Several minutes passed with no reply. He knocked again.
And once more.
Finally, the door cracked open, and Luke peered out. "Whaddya want?"
The young man, for lack of a more eloquent phrase, looked like hell. His eyes were glazed and exhausted, there were thick black smudges under his eyes, and he was standing like the doorframe was the only thing keep him upright. "'fessor?"
"Luke, what's wrong?" For a moment, he wondered if the young man was ill, but there was something in the way he carried himself that didn't quite suggest flu or fever, and his pallor was pale, but not in a sickly fashion. It took the great Professor Layton a mere moment to put two and two together and land somewhere in the area of four. "Luke, what were you up to last night?"
The young man's eyes flickered to one side before he answered. "Nothing."
Layton had already resigned himself to two things. One, he was going to be doing the bulk of the packing and hauling here. Two, he and Luke were going to have a serious and lengthy talk about responsibility while Luke was home over this holiday. "Very well, Luke. Give me the keys to your car, and I'll bring it around to start loading things into it."
Now Luke looked directly at him. Or rather, ever so slightly to his left. And his eyes were as wide as his hangover would allow. The gears turning inside his head were almost audible. After a moment, he looked down.
"Luke, where is your car?"
After a moment, the reply came in a whisper. "I'm…not…sure."
Layton's calm façade was gone. He openly gaped at his apprentice.
Luke visibly swallowed. "At least I didn't drive it home last night?"
As Layton did a flawless impression of a feeding goldfish, he decided that perhaps he should encourage Luke to move back home to the brownstone they had shared since Luke was a child. Or perhaps he should drag the boy off to a monastery and leave him there.
One or the other.
PS. My friends on Plurk demanded drunken Luke, and lo, there was drunken Luke. The worst part of all this? All of the above alcohol-induced incidents are based on real things that my sister did when under the influence. Yes, SHE LOST HER CAR. I suppose we should be grateful that she didn't drive it home, and they did find it, safe and sound. So we can thank my sister for inspiring Luke's intoxicated antics.
AND YES, BASEBALL WAS IN THAR. Hope you at least got a giggle out of it. Thanks for reading! Much love!