Chicken Voices
by Megolas

"Please stop the noise, I'm trying to get some rest, from all the unborn chicken voices in my head" - Paranoid Android, Radiohead.

Whoever said fame was fun obviously never had to deal with the kinda of shit Chris got on a regular basis. If it wasn't fans sitting outside their houses twenty-four/seven or stealing anything that wasn't nailed down and some stuff that was, then it was the occasional fights and hurt feelings that happen when five people were stuck together for long periods of time. Or the really small cramped bunks.

At least they were home and back in their houses - which were firm and steady and didn't have bunks, wheels and all the assorted mechanical problems that came along with all that - for the next two weeks. He couldn't hear Joey's snoring or Justin's singing or even JC's goddamn keyboard. In fact, when he was at home in his nice warm bed, he didn't wake up in the middle of the night and stare at the low ceiling of the bunk and wonder blearily where the hell they were going to now. (Lance could tell him but Lance would be asleep so he'd just settle for calling it 'buttfuck, nowhere.') Instead, he lay in bed and stared at the high ceiling of his room and wished that the unborn chicken voices in his head would shut up and didn't sleep at all.

He makes it two days before he cracks and phones Justin at 2 am. Justin's voice is rough and sleepy and just a little cranky about the hour and the phone call. He tells Chris to "shut the hell up and go to sleep, man." Does Chris even know what time it is? Yes, Chris does but he. can't. sleep. Justin humours him for a few more minutes but Chris can hear the barely held back yawn in every word and lets him go before Justin goes back to sleep on the phone because he's not a complete bastard, really.

Strangely enough, he falls asleep after that and doesn't wake up until the golden Florida sunshine lights up the whole room but the next night it's back to staring at the ceiling. Justin doesn't even humour him this time, just swears and hangs up so Chris tries Joey. Joey's awake but only because Brianna is up and teething. He sounds frazzled and tired and has to go comfort Brianna. Chris falls asleep again that night.

Two more nights of no sleep and Chris is practically dead to the world. He even misses the bus because at least then he gets some sleep. That gives him an idea, so he visits JC and falls asleep on the couch to the sound of JC scratching in his ever-present notebook. It's the best night of sleep Chris has had in his life. Or since they started the break. He finds himself counting down the days till they're back on the road and he is the first person back on the bus.

He can't wait for the familiar noises to start up. Joey's snoring, Justin's singing, JC's keyboard and Lance's laptop. Hell, he falls asleep to the sound of the wheels on the road and ignores the looks he gets when he announces three days in that he wants to live on the bus for the rest of his natural life.

He's sleeping like a baby and the unborn chicken voices in his head have finally shut up. Maybe fame's not so bad after all, it may have fucked up his sleeping patterns for life but it's provided him with a second family and the ability to sleep in small cramped spaces instead.


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