"Wha-? OH!" Ryan had forgotten all about the possibility of moving in with Brendon. A sense of dread filled him at the thought of the inevitable conversation with Brendon's parents that night. It could go one of two ways: pity or disbelief. Neither was all that appealing to Ryan. "I uh.. I have detention. You know how Ms. Ann is. I'll meet you at your place later."
"I could wait-" Brendon offered.
"No it's cool," Ryan assured him, "I can walk."
"Alright.. See ya later then." Brendon walked off as Ryan breathed a sigh of relief.
Ryan’s eyes followed Brendon’s body until the last footing of his walk was out the doors.
Now, he had to fulfill his part of Spencer and his unspoken agreement.
He took a deep breath in, readying himself for the next chapter of his life, and just when he was about to make use of his temporarily brought up courage by storming off into Spencer’s direction, Ryan realized the flaw in unspoken agreements.
Wait, which hallway?
Ryan stood there, pondering and at the same time appearing like the very essence of a child up for kidnapping.
"I know I stole your coat, you can have this song I wrote."
Ryan shrieked as he staggered backwards, tripping over his own feet, and in the end, finding himself in the arms of the one and only Spencer Smith.
"S-Spencer?" Ryan stammered as he tried to overcome his recent shock.
"SPENCER, WHAT THE FUCK!!??" he yelled, sending mammoth sound waves across the entire school, but mainly concentrating on the ear of the blond haired boy.
"Ryan, jeez, calm down," Spencer started to joke, but smile fell limp after the piercing look sent at him.
"Sorry..." he started off, wanting to continue, but found his voice disobedient. There were too many things able to list after that word, too many to choose, too many to voice.
Ryan sighed; the sound was like the gentle breeze of an overcast ocean to Spencer, dazzling, radiant, and ever so melancholic.
"What were you talking about?" His voice was like the strumming of guitars.
"It’s a song."
"I thought it fit the situation." Spencer shrugged, looking off to the side.
Ryan stared for a minute before returning to the point, “You said you wanted to talk?”
“Yeah.. um.. can we sit?” Spencer gestured to a nearby bench, and the two sat on opposite ends.
“Look Ryan, I- I’ve been really stressed lately and it’s messed me up,” he continued in a quiet, almost meek voice, “My mom died last week, Ry.” There were tears in the blond boy’s eyes.
Ryan was shocked. “Spence.. God, are you alright?” He reached out to touch his friend but jerked back, hear racing in fear.
“Ryan.” Spencer’s voice was choked. “I don’t expect you to forgive me.. I just wanted you to know that I was drunk and.. and not myself. I love you.”
“Spence, I do love you.. but I just can’t forgive you. I don’t know if I’ll ever be the same after.. I’m scared now. All the time. That’s not something you can just forgive and forget. And me and Bren.. we’re together now. I love him. I need him.”
Spencer looked hurt for a moment before sighing and dropping his eyes. “Can we at least try to be friends again?”
“I don’t know.” The thought terrified Ryan. Being near Spencer sent him into a panic. But the thought of Spencer being gone from his life struck the same fear into his heart.
“Ry.. can I drive you home?” Ryan shook his head violently, his head pounding with confusion and terror. Nearly tripping over a nearby trashcan, he ran out the door and all the way to Brendon’s house. Looking up at the brick building in front of him, Ryan felt like he was going to cry. ‘No!’ He told himself. ‘I’m not going to break down again. God I’m such a loser.’ He trudged slow up the quaint steps to the neat red painted door and knocked. Brendon opened the door with his usual enthusiastic grin. His smile faded a bit when he saw Ryan’s tired worry lined face, a constant reminder of recent events. “You ready to do this?” he asked gently.
‘No!’ Ryan’s brain screamed but his disobedient mouth mumbled, “Yeah, sure.”
“Mom,” Brendon called, “Can I talk to you?”
“Can you wait a half hour Brenny? I don’t wanna miss Oprah!”
“Um.. it’s kind of important.”
With a click the TV turned off. “Sure hon, what is it?” Brendon’s mom sounded concern. Ryan felt himself sigh with envy.
“Come on.” Brendon’s voice was encouraging. He quickly wrapped his arms around Ryan in a show of support. “You’ll be fine. I won’t let you go back there.” Brendon led the way into the sparkling clean living room.
“Oh hi Ryan dear,” Mrs. Urie greeted, her voice as warm and inviting as fresh baked cookies.
Brendon and Ryan sat on the flower patterned couch opposite Mrs. Urie. Brendon fiddled with his watch for a second before speaking, “Um Ryan’s dad..”
Ryan had to look away as Brendon’s mother turned her concerned face to him. Brendon continued awkwardly, “He um.. he abuses Ryan. And we- I was thinking he could stay here with us.. and.. yeah,” Brendon finished lamely.
There was a stunned silencing following Brendon’s words in which Ryan flamed red. The next thing he knew he was being pulled into a hug by Mrs. Urie as she sobbed. “Poor dear! Yes of course you can stay with us; we’ll make sure you never have to see that man again.”
Ryan simply sat there frozen. ‘Never see dad again?’ He knew he should be happy but he couldn’t help feeling like that would leave him completely and utterly alone.
Ryan lay on Brendon’s bed as Brendon and his mom waited downstairs so that they could tell Mr. Urie everything when he arrived back from his business trip. Suddenly thirsty, Ryan dragged himself off the comfortable mattress and crept down the stairs. He froze in the hallway as voices drifted out of the kitchen. “All I’m saying Anna, is kids cry abuse for anything these days. I highly doubt that it’s anything serious, you know how teenagers are.”
“Dad, Ryan needs your help; I can’t believe you would refuse him that!” Brendon stormed out the door and nearly ran into Ryan. “Oh shi- sorry Ry.” Brendon grabbed his arm and pulled the shocked boy into the light of the kitchen. “Come on, show him Ryan,” Brendon said encouragingly. Ryan glanced at Brendon before slowly peeling off his shirt and unwrapping the bandages. He tried not to show how much it still hurt to touch his injuries as he unwrapped. Finished, he looked up at Brendon who gave him a small smile. Mrs. Urie gasped, while Brendon’s father simply examined the boy with scrutinizing eyes. After a minute he nodded and said, “I’m sorry I doubted you son. You’re safe here. We need to talk about what legal action you’re going to take; I assume you will be pressing charges against your father.” He spat out the last word with disgust.
Brendon quickly came to Ryan’s rescue, “Dad, Ryan’s tired; don’t you think this can wait until tomorrow?”
Mrs. Urie gave Ryan a sympathetic look. “Of course dear, you two can go to sleep, just let your father and I handle everything.”
Brendon lead them back into his room, Ryan trailing behind like a lost puppy, lost in his thoughts, his emotions, and most of all, himself.
“OMPFH,” Brendon grunted, mockingly as he landed into his bed. Smiling, he turned back around to an emotionless Ryan, still standing in the doorway, gazing off into the floor.
“Uhm, yeah. Well, welcome to my humble abode!” Brendon chuckled with cheer.
Snapping out of his thoughts, Ryan looked back to the enthusiastic teen, now sitting on the bed.
“Well, huh, I guess we’ll have to think of sleeping arrangements.” Brendon clasped his chin onto his hand, pouting and furrowing his eyebrows, all at once.
Amused, Ryan beamed a small smile. No matter what Brendon did, his actions always seemed to have a dash of comedy.
“Hm...Well, I s’pose I can sleep on the couch. I think I’d be more comfortable around my pa-“
Brendon paused as he watched Ryan collapse, face first into the bed.
Brendon sighed, slowly lowering himself closer to the tussle of hair.
“Stay with me,” a voice said, so light it sounded, at most, like the rustle of feathers.
Brendon smiled and lowered himself gently onto the bed with Ryan. “Ryan, I just want you to know that everything’s gonna be okay. Your Dad’s going to jail, we’re gonna live together, and nobody is ever gonna be able to hurt you again. I won’t let them. I love you Ryan.” At this Ryan turned his head to the side and peered at Brendon through messy bangs. “I love you too.” Brendon’s face lit up as he heard those three words. He gently kissed Ryan’s forehead. “Sweet dreams beautiful.” Ryan smiled and buried his head in Brendon’s chest. Brendon sighed and wrapped one arm around his boyfriend, feeling himself begin to doze off.