Soon all of Zim's tremors just seemed to halt. He pulled himself back up onto all fours, extending his head up with his neck still cocked at an awkward angle so he could see Dib's face. He parted his lips into the grin again, beginning to screech out in a single laughter with that eerie 'e' sound again.
The sight of that haunting grin seemed to paralyze the boy as he slowly let himself down to the floor, wrapping himself in a fetal position as he rocked himself very stiffly as if to comfort himself. Violent shivers also shook him as the cackle rung in his ears as they only intensified the dread he was already feeling.
Zim slowly began to drag himself over to him, seeing him as wounded prey now. His limbs still had trouble taking turns, looking even more like a creature in dire need of an exorcism.
Dib's eyes expanded as the other drew closer to him. He didn't blink now since in his mind, blinking only made him made him more vulnerable than he already was, even though he would only lose sight for just a millisecond.
Zim watched him, a crazed smile that if it were a little less insane, could have looked like he was thrilled to see him. "IB.." He spoke slower, as if admiring the way it came out of his mouth. Somehow, the Irken had only recovered a portion of his long time enemy's name. He had up to this point only referred to him as 'IB' now.
Despite the previous fear of taking his eyes off the other, Dib buried his head in his knees as a sort of escape from the blood-curdling simper on Zim's face. The name, IB, rung through his head endlessly, almost accepting it as his real name now since that was the only one he had heard all day.
Zim finally stopped right beside him, dropping right against his side and actually losing consciousness. Those hollow eyes finally slipped closed and his mouth still remained parted. By how he slept, it almost looked like he were just normal Zim taking a snooze. But what lie beyond that sleeping refuge was a nightmare world he had created to live through in the waking world.
It was quiet again, which confused the boy since the last he had seen, Zim was coming at him with intentions to attack once again. He lifted his head very slightly and looked around, seeing no sign of the Irken. That was until he looked down at the floor to see him passed out beside him.
The sight of him sleeping now seemed to all but settle him. The fact that he looked so normal in his sleep, despite the blood that stained his skin and clothing, only added to his distress. He found himself forcing himself to believe that Zim was in fact sane now and that he would wake up as his normal self. It just seemed so real now, even though his breathing was rather uneven and obviously not normal.
Dib couldn't help but smile very weakly at this as he was slowly starting to believe his own fantasy was real. He outstretched a hand and hovered it very closely over Zim's shoulder, though he never let it touch. Instead, he took a moment to run his eyes over the other's body, taking in every detail, mostly his peaceful expression.
Zim's body hadn't changed any except maybe it had become even more lithe than before. And of course, he was covered in blood up his arms and his head. Down his cheeks and from his eyes there was a long straight line of puffed up skin, like a burn from the tears.
Finally, Dib had built up the courage to rest his hand upon Zim's shoulder, rubbing it very softly with his thumb. It wasn't a romantic act, more of just one that resulted from deep concern and longing.
"What happened, Zim?" Dib whispered, expecting the other to respond within several seconds.
Zim only gave a low 'screeee...' sound before remaining quiet and motionless again. Whatever had happened had obviously been enough to send the Irken deep into an irreversible psychosis. This was leading him to harm not only himself, but target Dib as well.
Dib's exhausted smile lingered on his face as his thumb continued to move lightly along Zim's shoulder. He attempted to reassure himself that everything would be fine now as he slipped deeper into his fantasy that the Irken would wake to be normal again, even though he was anything but normal before. He took in a deep sigh and rest his chin on his knees as he continued to watch the other.
But by the way Zim gripped his wrist now in his slumber seemed anything but reassuring. He'd always been maniacal before, and now he was maniacally insane. Now his new mission seemed to shift to destroying Dib, or IB as he claimed him to be.
This action snapped the fantasy from Dib's mind now as he could sense this as a dangerous grip rather than one of comfort. At this, the boy seemed to accept his fate as Zim's target. It was almost funny to think about actually... He had been pursuing the Irken for many years, waiting for the day he had finally cornered him. Now, the roles seemed to switched as it was Zim who was waiting for the day to finally catch 'IB' as he called him.
The boy whimpered as he pulled at his arm, trying desperately to escape the grip without waking Zim.
Zim's eyes shot open and he tightened his hold on Dib's arm significantly. "IB..." He screeched again, yanking to try and pull his arm out of socket a second time today.
Dib squealed in pain as his arm was pulled about, actually hearing a few small cracks which brought short shots of pain along with them. "STOP!" He pleaded in a cracked voice.
Zim bared his teeth to him, tugging on his arm. "IB!! ANSWER!!" He screeched at him, still seeming to be wanting an answer to the garbled sentence he had spoken at school that was still to this point, unable to be identified.
Dib cried out at the grimacing expression on Zim's face as it added more stress to the already unbearable situation. He tensed his body up, hoping this would keep the other from completely tearing his arm apart. "Y-you want me dead?!" He cried out with hopes that this is what Zim was looking for.
Zim gave that psychotic grin now as he stopped pulling. He reached forward and slid his bloodied hands across Dib's cheeks as if lovingly. "Answer.." He forced out again, staring straight into his eyes with that psychotic expression frozen on his face.
Dib closed his eyes and shivered at the touch for a moment, opening his eyes once the had slid half way down his cheeks. He stared, frozen as he came to terms with this truth now as well. The Irken really did want him dead...
Zim's face soon darkened into one that looked like impatient anger. "IB!!" He screeched again, his claws cutting into his cheeks. "KILLS!!" He screamed, his hands trembling against his cheeks.
Dib squealed and ripped his head up, though this only drug the embedded claws through his skin which created deep cuts that seeped crimson blood. He ended up losing his balance as well, falling backward on the floor and looking up wildly to see the door very close to him now. He rolled himself around so he was on his belly now, pulling himself to his knees and reaching out for the knob.
Zim reached a hand out from his sprawled position on the floor, holding his hand out weakly for him. "C..Come...back..." He rasped weakly as he stared at him hollowly as he tried to reach the door to escape him.
The tone of Zim's voice was almost needy and sorrowful and that in itself had quite an impact on the boy. He looked over his shoulder slightly to see the outstretched hand and he let out a whimper as this only intensified the effects of this. Dib struggled to escape this trap as he made it to the door, placing a hand on the knob and turning it slightly but hesitating to go any furthur.
Zim looked furious now as that mouth parted with a rage filled cry as he continued to stare him down with wild eyes that had every intention of attacking him. He weakly began to claw his way toward him, leaving more smears of blood in his path toward him.
This was enough to convince the boy of of his spell and open the door completely now, slamming it shut behind him as he rushed down the hallway and towards the stairs. He had miscalculated a few steps along the top though and ended up tumbling violently down. He smashed into the wall below, creating a large dent in it. He groaned and took a moment before working his way to his feet since this pain mixed with the rest seemed to stun him quite a bit.
Once to his feet, Dib rushed towards the kitchen and threw himself towards the drawers, opening and closing several in an attempt to find something. Seconds later, he pulled out what he was looking for; a large clever with a rather reflective blade as it hadn't been used much before. His reflection caught his attention for a moment and he examined himself.
His hair was rather messy and his face was so deeply cut from the claws, which were sure to leave scars once they healed. Dib's eyes looked weary, desperate and just plain scared. Though his hands shook violently so he wasn't able to get a clear vision of himself, but what he did see seemed to give him some discomfort.
At a particular jerk, there was a slight flash of green that could be seen from the mouth of the kitchen now, but only just a glance as the jerk had soon brought it away from that particular area. Dib's eyes strained more at this as he snapped around to see the crazed Irken before him, staring just as blankly as he had before. He stared for a moment before slowly, and shakily, raising the clever over his head as he tried to threaten the other.
"D-don't make me do something I'll regret.."
Zim didn't seem to understand what he was saying though as he began to almost limp toward him. "IB.." He forced out again, keeping his hand out for him while his other arm hung limply down in front of him.
Then, Dib jumped at Zim and grabbed a hold of the outstretched arm, pulling him over to the kitchen table and pinning it against the surface. He continued to hold the clever over his head as he intended on taking the limb off. All it took was one forceful swing...
Zim screeched as he thrashed against the restraining hold on the table. "IB!! IB!!" He continued to scream, as if almost trying to plead with him with the little rash thought he had. He slammed his forehead repeatedly against the table, continuing to scream.
Dib winced at the other's headed banging against the table as if it were his own. After this reaction, he couldn't bring himself to cut off the other's limb, even if it were a threat. Instead, he lowered the blade to Zim's forearm and pressed it against the limb, digging it down deep so it ripped the uniform and the skin beneath it as he dragged it up very slowly. This action drew a good amount of blood and was mostly intended to make a point that the boy was going to fight back against his attacks.
Zim continued to screech as he thrashed around and twitched. He turned his head to an awkward position and began biting his own forearm, as if feeling the only escape was to gnaw off his arm now.
Dib continued to move the blade so agonizingly slow that it almost took him a full minute to run the blade completely up his forearm. Once he felt that he had made his point, Dib released the arm and stepped backward a little, panting heavily as he comprehended what he had just done.
Zim stumbled back and hit the wall after a moment, eyes still staring hollowly at the human standing a ways away from him. "IB!! KILLS!!" He screeched as he kept his wounded arm dangling now and began to limp toward him again with a hiss of rage.
Dib dropped the clever where he stood and dashed towards the Irken, out of the kitchen and towards the front door. He unlocked it and ripped it open, rushing to the end of his yard and searching desperately for anyone. No one in particular, just someone who may help him.
He spotted a woman who seemed busy on the phone, but that didn't seem to matter to him as he dashed towards her and grabbed her arm in a distressed grip, staring up at her with a distraught expression. The woman jumped a bit in his grip, pulling the phone away from her ear and staring at him, though she seemed disillusioned just from the look on his face.
"P-please help me.." Dib started of in a shaking tone. "T-there's a psycho alien in my house trying to kill me!"
"Uh.." She started before she was interrupted.
Dib pointed up to his cheek with his free hand, looking more strained as he did so. "He did this to me!! He did all of this to me! Please help me!" He screeched as he motioned to the seeping wounds that scarred his flesh.
The woman seemed eager to get out of his grip now as she tugged against him, eventually working her way free. "It's... Just in your head..." She suggested as she practically jogged away from him.
Dib wiped the blood from his cheeks now and held out his hands shakily to no one in particular but to anyone who would bother looking. "He did this to me! Please help me!!" He screamed in agony.
Wherever anyone looked though, there was no alien out trying to get the boy. To them, it was just the neighbourhood's disturbed kid who's rich and famous father probably sighed disappointingly over everyday. And, of course, no one ever believed a word out of his mouth.
Dib had managed to scout out two boys walking home from skool and he made his way clumsily towards them, holding his hands out to them to reveal the blood that stained them. "P-please help me... Zim's going to kill me.." His tone was rather needy now, but of course the boys paid it no mind as they just ran past him to avoid anymore interaction with him.
People down the street were now paused to stare at him oddly and a bit frighteningly. A kid nearby frowned more and shuddered at the deranged Membrane. "Dude... you need some serious help..." He commented before walking briskly away to try and get away from the craziness.
"N-no.. I'm not crazy! He's in there!" Dib shouted as he motioned towards his house, looking again for anyone who would pay him any mind.
Soon enough, everyone just went about their own business again and left the poor boy alone. There again, no one had believed him and a good percentage had just called him insane once more.
Dib had soon lost hope and stood with his eyes closed for a moment before opening them to slowly return to his house. He stood at the edge of the yard, staring at the house which seemed to haunt him now just from the sight of it. A place where he used to feel so safe had turned into a living hell for the boy in just a matter of hours. He hated the idea of going back in there from the fear that he would endure more attacks, but where else was he to go?
The Irken could be lying just beyond that door, waiting for his IB. He could even be back in his room, just waiting for him to fall asleep and become vulnerable to him. He was going to get his IB eventually.