Title: His Heart So Full Characters: Dustin Henderson, Suzie Genre: romantic drama, light angst Summary: Shortly after Starcourt, frustrated with friends and family, Dustin retreats to Cerebro to try and contact Suzie. A/N: I don't care what anyone say, I like Suzie and Dustin and Suzy. That song is 3x8 is amazing! This is Dustin's wacky way of dealing with events in 3x8 and a long distance girlfriend. His Heart So Full It had been two days since the Battle of Starcourt and Dustin Henderson was sitting atop the highest, greenest hill in Hawkins, in the shadow of Cerebro, twisting the knobs on his radio. He had been trying to reach Suzie for over an hour with no success. He knew communicating with her was not going to be an exact science and he shouldn’t expect her to be sitting at her desk waiting with baited breath for his next call. But he really needed to talk to her. He had talked to everyone else and was tired of talking to them. He was tired of El’s tears. He was tired of Max wishing it wasn’t so. He was tired of Mrs. Byers’ sad eyes. He was so tired and in so much denial about Hopper. But most all, he was just done with ‘Dusty-Buns’ and ‘Suzie-Poo’ and that stupid song. How did his friends have time to tease him in face of so much horror? He pressed the button on his handset one more time. “Suzie? This is Dustin. Do you copy?” A low hum of static met his plea and his shoulders sank in disappointment. In frustration, he threw the handset, connected to the cord, connected to the radio. It snapped back quickly and hit him on the wrist. “Ouch!” he exclaimed to the air. He stood up, ready to kick the radio down the hill, when a burst of static stopped him. He picked of the hand set again. “Is anybody out there?” He said, despondently. Suddenly, the voice of angel emitted from the speaker. “Who else would it be, Dusty-Buns?” Suzie said, sweetly. “This is our frequency, isn’t it?” “Of course it is, Suzie,” he replied, the smile in his voice fighting the pent of grief and frustration of the last week. “It’s so good to hear your voice.” “We talked a couple days ago, Silly,” she replied. “You were saving the world, remember? How did it end up?” Dustin hated the idea of lying to Suzie, so he told her the truth. “We saved the world, but it cost us a lot.” “Is this another one of your Dungeons and Dragons campaigns, Dusty-Buns? she asked, playfully. Dustin bit the inside of his cheek. He wanted to tell her; tell her everything. But, he couldn’t. He didn’t want to put her in danger. He doubted if she would believe it. She could only hear him. Should would hear something in his voice, some truth, but without seeing him, without body language and facial expression, could she believe such a terrible story? “Dusty-Buns?” she asked after an awkward silence. “Can it be just Dustin, tonight, Suzie?” He sighed, after being brought out of his reverie. “It’s been a tough week.” “You don’t sound so good, Dusty-Dustin,” Suzie said, concern creeping into her voice. “Are you okay?" “Not really,” Dustin replied, morosely. “We saved the world, but people died.” “You sound awfully broken up about the outcome of a game, Dustin. Do you want to talk about something else?” Dustin laid down in the grass, his head next to the speaker, clutching the handset to his chest. “I need to talk about this, Suzie. The game was the game, but something happened here and good friend died. Like, for real, died.” “Oh my goodness,” she replied in a near whisper. “I’m sorry, Dustin. Who was it? One of your friends from the Party? I wish I was there. I want to hug you so much. Or just hold your hand. Whatever you need.” “I wish you were here, too, Suzie Poo,” he replied reflexively. “I really need you. Not just because you are the most beautiful girl in the world, either. I need to talk to you because…I just need a break from all my friends and family. The person who died was an adult. Kind of a mentor. To all of us.” “Mr. Clarke!” she exclaimed in shock. “Oh Dustin!” Dustin took a deep breath, quelling his momentary irritation. “Suzie. Listen to me. It was not Mr. Clarke. That would have been horrible. But, in some ways, a lot of ways, this was worse.” “Steve?” she blurted. “Steve Harlington?” “No,” he declared, edginess emerging despite his attempt to stop it. “It wasn’t Steve. Stop guessing, Suzie! The person is not someone I told you about. There was silence on the other end of the radio and the low hum of the radio seemed to pulse in Dustin’s ears. He shouldn’t have snapped. She’s only trying to show her support the best way she knows how in the moment. “I’m sorry, Suzie-Poo,” he said, softly, adding the pet name as a peace offering. “I didn’t mean to yell. There is a lot going on here. Will you please forgive me?” “I don’t like being talked to that way, Dustin,” she said, evenly. “I was only looking for answers. I want to know how hard it has been for you.” “I know. I know. I’m sorry. I just need you to listen to me. He was like a father figure to us, you know. He wasn’t around all the time, but he was around when it counted. He wasn’t the most fun person to be around, but he was the bravest man I’ve ever met. He didn’t show his emotions well, but he protected us with his life. There are monsters out there, Suzie. Just pure evil. Not like in games or movies, but just as terrible. He protected us. He wasn’t my dad, but I would have been proud to have him. Do you know what I mean?” “I think so,” she replied, quietly. “I’m so sorry, Dustin. There is evil out there. I know. I watch the news. I see it how the world just seems to be getting worse.” “You have no idea,” Dustin said, without thinking. “Yes, Dustin,” she challenged. “I do. I have enough of an idea to sense that the evil touched you. Didn’t it?” Dustin turn over on his stomach and beat the ground furiously with his fist. This call was supposed to be a comfort, but it was starting to make him feel worse. He thought he could skirt the truth, but that had only made her think something altogether different, but none the less traumatizing, had happened to him. He had to tell her the truth, consequences be damned. Max believed. Dammit! Only after she saw for herself. A fine corner you’ve talked yourself into, Henderson. “It’s not what you think, or don’t think,” Dustin stammered. “I don’t know what you’re thinking. But, it has nothing to do with Creepers or kidnapping or abuse of any kind. It’s not like that at all. I have a story to tell you, Suzie. I want you to listen and don’t ask any questions until the end. Y-You are my Suzie-Poo and this will blow your mind.” “Dusty-Buns,” she said, back her sweet and lovey-dovey tone. “You don’t have to tell me. It’s okay. It’s enough to know that you wanted to talk to me when you were feeling down. It’s enough that you sang our song when you didn’t want to, and probably in front of your friends. Now what movie should we watch this week and talk about on our next call?” Dustin sat the grass and shook his head at the weird places this call had been. He liked Suzie a lot and he would call her back. This was her way of ending the madness. Bless her heart for letting him of the trap he had placed himself into. Knowing her, this might only be a short reprieve, but he was thankful for it. “Thank you, Suzie. How about we make it Grease?” “Excellent choice!” she exclaimed. “What song should we do?” “Grease itself isn’t the obvious choice. How about that?” “Grease is the word…” “That you heard…” “It’s got groove…” “It’s got meaning…” “Grease is the time, is the place, is the motion…” “Grease is the way we are feeling.” “Suzie-Poo signing off.” “Sleep tight Suzie-Poo. Dusty-Buns signing off.” Dustin lay in the green grass, on the top of the tallest hill in Hawkins and grinned his toothiest grin. The butterflies danced a funny jig in his belly. He had a lot to be sad about, but now so much less to be mad about. Suzie made it better. She helped him let go of the bull**** and embrace what was good. His heart was so full at the moment, he would willingly save the world with a song for her again if it came to that. He could now hug El and a comfort Max and commiserate with Mike. He could now be sad about Hopper is a positive way. Now, he could school Lucas in any and all video game challenges. At least, he felt like he could. He picked up the hand set one last time. Pressing the talk button, he said: “I miss you already, Suzie.” Only one heartbeat passed. “I already miss you too, Dustin. Don’t let the bed bugs bite.” His heart was so full it could burst. Fin.