Frank finds out some interesting information while at the hospital.
"Dahlia." The girl told him with a smile. "I'm a friend of Frank's."
"I've never seen you before though."
"I'm not alive anymore." She said calmly.
"If you're not alive, and I can see you," Gerard took a deep breath, "am I dead?"
"No." She laughed a little. "You're in a coma." Gerard suddenly remembered Frank telling him what it was like to be in a coma. However, Gerard saw no fork in the road or heard any voices other than that of the girl standing before him.
"So," He said with confusion, "why are you talking to me?"
"I'm cheating." Dahlia giggled.
"Cheating at what?"
"Life." She told him with a large grin. "First, you need to answer me one question. How much do you love Frank?" Dahlia seemed like an innocent child as she spoke; pure and perfect.
"With all my heart. Why?" He didn't do well with nosy people.
"Good. Come with me." She extended a hand to him and after a moment's pause, Gerard took it nervously. "What I'm going to show you is disturbing." Dahlia warned him. "But I think it's the only way you'll ever know."
"Shut your eyes." She said and Gerard reluctantly obeyed. "Understand that you can't make contact. It's like you're a ghost; part of the air."
"What do you mean, Dahlia?" A strange feeling flooded Gerard, but only for a moment.
"Open your eyes." Gerard opened them and almost screamed as he saw Frank sitting in a corner, slicing himself open. "Remember, he can't see or hear you." Dahlia reminded Gerard as he watched the blood seep from Frank's arms, horrified that Frank was hurting himself again.
"Why?" Gerard whispered.
"He believes it's his fault you got shot." Gerard looked to her with confusion because there was no way Frank could have prevented it. "I warned him by telling him to keep you inside all day. The man who shot you was an escaped mental patient determined to kill you for killing his brother on the beach a few years back." Regret consumed Gerard.
"I should have listened to him." Gerard mumbled as Ray suddenly ran into the room, Mikey following moments later as they fought Frank before medical staff came to help.
"Come, no more to see." Dahlia took Gerard's hand and suddenly the whole scene melted around Gerard. He stared in to the nothingness with fear. "Don't worry, he's fine."
"I thought he knew better." Gerard sat down, crying a little. "I just don't understand."
"Frank has inner demons." Dahlia flopped down next to Gerard. "He needs your help, now more than ever, to help him through life. Especially after hearing life altering news about twelve hours after that little trip we just took."
"He already heard he was positive. How else can he hear life threatening news?" Gerard quickly shut himself up. "How long does he have left?"
"Many, many years." Dahlia smiled and Gerard sighed relief. "Listen." Gerard concentrated on the nothingness until he heard distant voices. "Know who it is?" Gerard shook his head. "Ray. Ray Toro."
"Toro?" Gerard became confused again.
"He's talking to Frank who's strapped to the hospital bed, which he broke, so he can't hurt himself or more hospital staff." Dahlia spoke calmly. "But listen to what Ray tells Frank."
Gerard listened carefully, his heart practically exploding when he heard what Dahlia intended. 'I fucking love you Frank Iero; that's why' echoed through Gerard's mind as he lost the ability to breathe.
Frank stared at the door Ray disappeared through, his whole body consumed with shock. He always knew Ray loved him, but not in that way. The way Ray said it too wasn't any 'I love you'; It was the 'I love you' that really meant 'I'm head over heels, give my life, madly in love with you' and Frank didn't know what to do. It was the same kind of 'I love you' that he always said to Gerard. He loved Ray, but not wasn't in love with him. Frank was in love with Gerard; his fiancé.
His body numbed as he thought about his current situation. He was just told one of his best friends was in love with him while he's strapped to a bed, not in a good way, and he has no one to talk to about it because his lover's in a coma and his best friend is the reason he needed to talk. Frank couldn't think straight as he stared at the ceiling. There was a soft knock at the door, Mikey coming in a moment later. He walked to Frank with a slight smile, taking the chair Ray was in.
"Are you ok?" Mikey asked quietly and Frank shook his head, still slightly crying.
"I wish I was dead." Frank said painfully.
"Don't say that." There was a little fear in Mikey's voice.
"I don't know what to do; about anything. I'm so lost and confused."
"Why don't you start by telling me whatever's on your mind." Mikey said quietly and Frank was grateful that someone wanted to listen. He had gone to school with Mikey and done a lot with him before as well as after Frank and Gerard started dating. Mikey was one of his good friends but didn't the two didn't share much with each other only because they never really had the time to just sit and talk.
"I'm scared of myself because I hurt so many people." Frank whispered and Mikey pulled the chair closer so he could hear him.
"The doctor said that you were really scared and worried about Gerard which gave you superhuman strength. You know, like a mother when her child is stuck under a car or something. No one really knows why or how it happens, it just does." Mikey smiled at Frank. "He's doing better by the way." Frank smiled back knowing that Gerard was fighting for life. "His heart rate and brain waves increased."
"He's going to be really mad at me." Frank told Mikey miserably. "He told me to stop hurting myself and I didn't listen."
"Gerard loves you more than anything. He might be upset for a bit but he'll get over it." Mikey undid the straps on Frank's arms, telling him that he didn't need them. Frank looked at his arms which were heavily bandaged and rather numb. "What you need to worry about right now is Ray."
"So you know too." Frank mumbled and Mikey nodded. "I have no idea what to do about that. I love him, but I'm in love with Gerard; if that makes any sense."
"Of course it does. I love you, Ray, and Gee; but I'm in love with Bob." Frank laughed slightly because the way Mikey talked sometimes reminded him of a small child. "Ray always knew that you and Gerard were meant to be. That's why he never said anything. But when he saw you last night with all that blood coming from you, he flipped out." Mikey looked to the ground. "You ended up stabbing him when you were fighting everyone because he was helping them hold you down, whispering to you that everything would be ok." Frank's stomach churned.
"What am I supposed to say or do?" Frank leaned his head back and squeezed his eyes shut. "I don't want to hurt Ray, physically or emotionally, but my heart belongs to Gerard." His head spun with emotion.
"Ray knows that. He wants you to marry Gerard. That's why he pushed it so much yesterday." Mikey smiled at Frank again. "Ray just wants you to be happy. He'll always love you, but he could never take you from Gerard."
"Hopefully Gerard and I will make it to the altar; so to speak." He told Mikey with a sigh.
"You will." Mikey said happily. "I always wondered when he would ask. He always talked and fantasized about it since that Friday night from so long ago." He laughed and Frank smiled again. "Don't dwell on it Frankie. Follow your heart; it knows what to do." Mikey stood and pushed the chair back. "I'm going to check on Gee then Ray. I'll come back later."
"Thanks Mikey." Frank said, making himself comfortable on the bed. "It really does help having someone to talk to."
"Anytime." Mikey smiled before shutting the door behind him. Moments after Mikey left, a doctor came in to talk to Frank.
"I see you go free." He told Frank with a smile.
"Yeah; Mikey." Frank said, resting his arms in his lap.
"They were just a safety precaution to protect our staff as well as yourself." He told Frank who nodded. "What you did was very risky; not only to yourself because of severe blood loss but because you're positive." He spoke firmly to Frank. "If your blood got onto an open sore or any opening for that matter on someone, you could cause that person to contract the disease."
"I had no idea." Frank was horrified at the thought of accidentally infecting Ray, or Mikey, or anyone for that matter. "Is everyone ok?"
"The only person we're concerned about is your friend, Mr. Toro. Not only did you brutally attack him but by the end of it all, he was completely lathered in your blood." Frank stomach churned more, fear flooding him as he thought about destroying Ray's life. "When we got you situated, he was thoroughly cleaned up, treated for the rather nasty wounds you caused, then tested." He told Frank, looking directly at Frank who had to look away. "As of right now he's negative, but it's too early to tell so he'll have to be tested again in a week or so."
"I didn't know I was doing that. All I remember was seeing Gerard's body, then Mikey crying. I don't remember anything about crying or attacking people or cutting myself. All I know is I woke up here, strapped down, and Ray really pissed off."
"We believe it was all unintentional based on what your friends said about you. However, facts based on your history in the hospital made us take precautionary measures by containing you. We also had a psychiatrist review your charts, old and new, to see if you might possibly need any medication so that you won't hurt yourself anymore."
"So I belong in an asylum after all." Frank mumbled.
"No, asylums are for people that could snap at any time, any place. You seem to snap when something is seriously wrong with Mr. Way." He looked intrigued as he spoke. "Are you two lovers?"
"Y-yes." Usually Frank wouldn't share such personal information with a stranger because most people around the area where homophobic. "Engaged actually."
"That's what I thought." The doctor didn't seem hostile about it at all. Instead he expressed interest. "There's a running study on the power of true love. You just contributed to helping us understand its strength."
"Y-you're welcome?" Frank muttered with confusion.
"Well you're be greatly happy to know that Mr. Way will be perfectly fine." He smiled to Frank then backed away slightly. "I have to ask you not to over react."
"But I'm just sitting here..." He was even more confused.
"You won't be happy with what I'm going to share with you." He turned his face to the floor and Frank felt uneasy. "See, based on your previous stay with us about two years ago, when you denied that pain medication, I was very curious as to why. Never had I seen someone put themselves through such pain purposely. Then when Mr. Way showed up, you completely changed by accepting medications and becoming happier." He smiled at Frank who just stared at him in confusion. "It got me very interested in the relationship between you and Mr. Way, especially after you ended up back here when you were diagnosed with HIV. He would talk to you, sing to you, and lay with you; even when you were completely unresponsive for awhile. It was then I assumed you were lovers."
"I am really confused as to where you're going with all this." He admitted to the doctor.
"Ah yes; back to the present." He smiled, laughing slightly to himself. "Well I recently read about this study on the strength of love; how people react when a loved one is in danger. My mind instantly went to you and Mr. Way. I was going to contact you when you ended up here on your own. Happy to be able to partake in the study, I had the best surgeons available operate on you fiancé because I knew they would succeed. One the bullet was removed, Mr. Way started showing excellent signs of recovery; something we rarely see happen so quickly in cases of major surgery. Of course this proposed a problem to my research so I administered special drugs to Mr. Way to present the signs of a severe coma so I could see how you would react. You showed excellent results; far more valuable than I imagined. I didn't mean for you to get hurt so that is why neither you nor Mr. Way will receive any medical bills. You won't have any lawsuits either."
"So that whole time Gerard was fine?" Frank felt rage course through him. "You fucking allowed me to destroy myself thinking he would die?! Do you know how much he talked to me about cutting or hurting myself?! I fucking fell back to my self pity and severe depression, hoping to kill myself! Not to mention I hurt my best friends and a good amount of your staff!"
"I told you that you wouldn't be happy." He backed away from Frank some more. "Of course the only reason I'm telling you is because I've already been fired and I'm losing my medical license. But the results you gave me made it all worth it because I will be able to help the research team come to a conclusion." He was happy about getting to join the research.
"Rot in hell asshole!" Frank spat angrily at him.
"I'm sure I will." He continued to smile at Frank. "You can leave when you wish." He walked back to Frank and undid the remaining straps. Frank fought off the urge to strangle him. "Your clothes are over there." Frank tuned to the window and saw his clothes thrown in a bag. "Mr. Way should be waking up soon. He'll be able to leave when they verify his heart wasn't affected and he his incision site obtained no infection."
"Get out of here before I kill you." Frank told him sharply, sitting up to get his clothes.
"Gladly." There was fear in the ex-doctors voice as he headed for the door. "Keep your arms bandaged; changing them once a day like you did with your chest. If they get wet, change them in to dry bandages as soon as you can. If they remain numb or become irritating, let your physician know immediately. We don't want them to get infected. Come back in roughly two weeks to have them examined." He opened the door and stepped into the hall. "Thank you again Mr. Iero. You made a big contribution to science." With a smile, the ex-doctor shut the door, leaving Frank alone to change.
Once dressed, Frank made sure his sleeves covered as much of his arms as they would in hopes that Gerard wouldn't notice them. He then headed to the waiting room of the ICU where he found Ray sitting quietly in a chair. "Hey." Frank said, walking to Ray and sitting down next to him.
"What are you doing out of your bed?" He mumbled, avoiding eye contact.
"They said I could go, saying that I wasn't psychotic. Shows how much they know." Frank joked with Ray but he remained like he was. "I'm really sorry Ray. I really had no idea I was doing that."
"I know." Ray put his elbows on his knees then rested his head in his palms. "It's just I saw all the blood and I started freaking out because I thought you knew better." A few tears ran down Ray's face so Frank rubbed Ray's back gently just like Ray would always do when Frank was upset. "I knew it wasn't really you though. I could tell by the look in your eyes. They weren't soft and loving like they normally are. " Ray's voice was calm and gentle rather than sharp and threatening. "I'm sorry I freaked out on you earlier. I'm even sorrier for troubling you with my stupid feelings."
"They're not stupid." Frank said quietly. "I love you Ray, but I'm not in love with you. I'm in love with Gerard." Ray nodded, trying to stop crying. "You're like the perfect person. It would never work between us. Gerard though, he's just as fucked up as me and we just drive each other insane every minute of every day." Ray laughed and Frank smiled with ease as Ray's mood began to change. He lifted Ray's head, looked him in the eyes while wiping away the tears, then put his lips to Ray's for a very brief moment. "I'll always love you, but I belong with Gerard."
"He's awake!" Mikey suddenly burst into the room. "Oh; hi Frank..." his voice became quiet. "Shouldn't you be strapped to a bed?"
"They let me go." Frank told him with a smile, Ray rubbing his eyes.
"That's great Mikey." Ray said, faking joy. He was happy that Gerard was awake but he was still at a loss about Frank; especially since Frank had just basically kissed him.
"Yeah well," Mikey walked inside the room and fell into a chair next Frank, "he's asking for you Frank." He said miserably and Frank laughed.
"Where's Bob?" Ray asked, suddenly realizing that there wasn't a blond boy attached to Mikey like there usually was.
"He went to get coffee." Mikey said. "But I didn't plan on you..."
"It's ok." Frank said as he stood. "I think I'll just go sit with Gerard." They nodded as Frank left the room, pain starting to return to his arms as he walked down the hall to Gerard's room. Quietly, he went inside, shutting the door gently behind him before walking around the curtain and sitting next to Gerard. "About time your lazy ass woke up." He teased Gerard, taking his hand.
"Frankie?" Gerard mumbled as though he was half asleep.
"Right here babe." Frank ran his other hand along Gerard's face which no longer held a breathing mask. Most of the machines he was hooked too had been removed from him because like the doctor told Frank, he was pretty much fine.
"Do you love me?" Gerard suddenly asked, slight pain in his voice.
"Of course I do. With all my heart." Frank told him compassionately. "Why wouldn't I?"
"I was just wondering." He looked at Frank with big, warm eyes that made Frank smile. "Show me your arms." He told Frank rather sternly.
"W-why?" Frank was nervous.
"Frankie; arms." Gerard repeated and Frank took a deep breath before rolling his sleeves back. He couldn't keep anything from Gerard. Lies ruined relationships. Gerard looked at Frank's arms, taking them in his hands and gently turning them, nodding slightly. "Me getting shot wasn't your fault." To Franks surprise, Gerard wasn't upset at all. He was calm and gentle as he spoke. "You have to learn that hurting yourself doesn't solve anything baby."
"How did you know?" Frank asked apprehensively.
"When you love someone enough, you just do." Gerard smiled then moved himself over some. "Come here." Frank carefully got into the bed, Gerard pulling him close and wrapping his arms tightly around Frank. "I met Dahlia."
Frank looked at him with wide eyes. "You did?"
"Yeah. She's really sweet." Frank smiled and nodded, resting his head on Gerard's chest gently. "I'm really sorry I didn't listen to you Frankie." Gerard's grip around Frank tightened. "I promise I'll never question you again."
"Gotta have trust." Frank whispered. "I trust you; I want you to trust me."
"I do." Gerard told him gently. "I was worried why you wouldn't tell me. That's why I kept asking. I was afraid," he ran his hand along Frank's arm, "this would happen."
"I'm really sorry Gee." Frank told him, a few tears escaping his eyes.
"Don't cry baby." Gerard said, wiping Frank's face. "You're fine, and that's all that matters. We just have to work on preventing it in the future." When Gerard said 'we', Frank felt warmth and compassion blanket him.
"And you're fine." He smiled as he put his arms carefully around Gerard. "And one day we'll fucking put our rings to use." Frank teased Gerard some more.
"Actually I was thinking about that as I sat in the vast realm of nothingness; talking to Dahlia." Gerard said quietly. "Look Frankie, I know what Ray said to you."
"He told me he loved me." Again, no secrets. Frank couldn't keep anything from Gerard; especially not that. "I told him that I loved him, but I wasn't in love with him. I'm in love with you."
"Good because I wasn't about to give you up Iero." He said and Frank laughed a little.
"I have no intention of giving you up." Frank rested his head comfortably on Gerard's chest. "Ever."
"So what exactly happened to me? My chest feels like it's on fire." Gerard said and Frank instantly removed his head. Gerard laughed a little and ran a hand through Frank's hair. "It's ok Frankie, you're not doing it."
"But I don't want to hurt you." Frank said with concern.
"You're in my arms, giving me your love. You could never hurt me." Gerard pulled Frank's head back to his chest. "So, what happened?"
"You got shot." Frank said quietly.
"I know that dumbass." He teased Frank. "Details please."
"Shall I recount the past two days for you?" Gerard nodded so Frank took a deep breath in. "You went outside, I heard a gunshot. I ran outside, found you oozing blood all over the lawn. Younger brother of the dude you killed was holding gun when our neighbor took him down until the cops arrived. You were rushed here where they stuck you in surgery, removing the bullet that missed your heart by like a fraction of an inch. I didn't tell anyone we were here but they of course found out after Ray called wondering where we were. I came to see you, freaked out by all the machines and whatnot, then freaked out and ran when Mikey started hysterically crying. I blacked out and woke up strapped to a hospital bed because I guess I started cutting myself then brutally attacked Ray as well as some of the staff. Ray flipped out then told me he loved me, Mikey talking to me and telling me that I should follow my heart, which always leads me to you. Asshole doctor comes in and tells me that you were fine right after the bullet was removed but they kept you in a coma for some stupid experiment they were conducting on the power of true love. I was released, told Ray that my heart belonged to you, and here I am." Gerard just stared at Frank with shock.
"Wow." He finally said. "We have very interesting lives." He said with a smile.
"Yeah, we do." Frank got comfortable again. "Guess what you get to do?" He chimed in his childish voice. "Help me change the bandages on my arms each day!"
"Oh joy." Gerard muttered with a smile. "But before we talk about anything else or fall asleep, I want us to choose a fucking date to get married. I'm tired of everyone harassing us." He laughed slightly as he spoke.
"That would be nice." Frank added. "I'm starting to forget what this ring is for." He teased and Gerard smacked him in the side of the head.
"Don't be such a whiny brat." He told Frank, pulling the blanket up since he was starting to get chilled. He tried not to look at his arms because there were needles; the one thing that Gerard couldn't stand.
"Would you want me any other way?" Frank said teased some more.
"Nope." Gerard held Frank tightly to him. "You're perfect just how you are. I couldn't ask for anything more."
"Stop being a sap." Frank said with a cocky smile. "Date. Now."
"I really don't care." Gerard said with more laughter. "Any day, any time, any where. As long as it involves you, me, rings, and cake." Frank laughed when Gerard added 'cake' as though it was a major factor. "And warmth. Preferably dark. We need music, suits, maybe a dress for you;" Frank hit Gerard while both started laughing. "Whatever you want."
"You'd look better in a dress than me first off." He told Gerard.
"But I'm not as much of a pansy as you are." One thing that made their relationship so manageable for both was the fact that they constantly teased each other, keeping it fun and entertaining. Anything with Frank was fun and entertaining. "So, you would get the dress."
"The only reason I would do a better job in a dress than you is because you can't pull off a tiara." Frank continued to tease.
"You have me there Iero." He admitted, pretending to be ashamed as he spoke by putting his head down. "No one pulls of a sparkly pink tiara like you do." Gerard began to laugh again as he spoke.
"You better remember that too." Frank pretended to be stern with Gerard.
"I think I should be fine. Coming home to a clean house, cooked meal, and perfectly behaved children." They both choked with laughter as they continued with each other.
"You can do the whole child thing." Frank said when he was able to breathe long enough to put a sentence together. "My body's too good to ruin with stretch marks." The laughter continued until both couldn't move; their sides as red as their faces.
"Ok. Focus." Gerard said, still getting over the last of his laughter. "Date." He could only manage single words.
"June 23." Frank said. "It's summer, random, and just came to my mind." He continued to fight off the remainder of his laughing fit.
"Finally...got...that...done." Gerard started laughing all over again, unaware of why. Something about being close to Frank made him laugh, making all his pain disappear. "We're going to have too much fun together." He said, managing a complete sentence to his surprise.
"I like having fun with you." Frank coughed a bit, his lungs stinging from his rapid gasps for breath between his continuous laughing fit. "My life feels complete when I'm with you."
"I'm just that perfect." Gerard said cockily and Frank nodded. They both settled down, the hospital quieting down as the night shift got ready to start. Mikey had stopped by once to see how everything was but left when neither Gerard nor Frank could muster up words while they laughed. Gerard actually thinks they might have scared Mikey because he left in a hurry. "How did I get lucky enough to get you?" He asked Frank quietly when he finally got past insane laughter.
"We're simply meant to be." Frank told him with a smile.
"You watch that movie too much." Gerard told him, fighting off laughter. "But it's true." Gerard turned onto his side slightly so they were in a tight embrace rather than Frank on top of Gerard. "We are simply meant to be."
A/N---REALLY long chapter xD Kinda couldn't stop because I had to make things right between Gerard and Frank. You'll love the next chapter. I think we're nearing the end of this story. For those of you who read my one about the 'Im Not Ok' video, sorry I haven't updated! I kinda got absorbed into this story. I have the next chapter written though so be ready for it within the next week or so.