Rydon. Short and sweet.
Brendon found Ryan curled up in a corner of his bedroom, sobbing into his knees. He was gripping a file tightly in his hand, his knuckles turning white from the strain. Ryan’s whole body was trembling and small whimpers escaped his mouth.
“Ryan,” whispered Brendon, crouching down next to him. Ryan didn’t answer. Brendon put a hand on Ryan’s and said softly, “Ryan, look at me.” Ryan hesitated, and looked up, his honey eyes meeting with Brendon’s brown ones. Eyeliner was smudged beneath Ryan’s eyes and his cheeks were wet with tears.
“Is that the doctor’s report?” asked Brendon softly. Ryan nodded and held the file close to him, as if afraid that Brendon would take it. Brendon’s gaze fell on the file and back to Ryan. He knew Ryan would tell him when he was ready.
Brendon got up and walked slowly to the door. On reaching it and placing a hand on the doorknob, a voice stopped him.
“Wait, don’t go.”
Brendon smiled to himself and turned around. Ryan was biting on his lower lip nervously, walking towards Brendon. Ryan pulled Brendon to the bed, where they sat in silence. Ryan was glancing between the file in his hands and Brendon’s face.
“Brendon, this will change everything,” said Ryan, staring at the ground. He felt a warm arm wrap around him and Brendon’s face came into view next to Ryan’s on his shoulder.
“It’s okay, Ryan. You can tell me. I’ll always be your friend,” said Brendon shakily. Ryan smiled sadly and took a deep breath, looking into Brendon’s eyes.
“I-I have cancer.” Brendon felt his heart crack into tiny little pieces. Did he hear correctly? Did Ryan just say the thing he was dreading the most in the world? Brendon closed his eyes, turning away from Ryan so the older boy couldn’t see the tears forming in his eyes.
“Ryan,” whispered Brendon, clenching his hands into fists. “Please don’t say- don’t tell me that you-you…” Ryan nodded, pulling his knees to his chest. He looked at Brendon, who was still trying to process this new bit of information.
“Brendon, I-I only have a year left,” mumbled Ryan, his voice thick with sobs. Brendon shook his head feverishly, wishing it was all just a dream, a bad dream and nothing more. It wasn’t, though. It was real, as real as the boy sitting next to him. The beautiful boy, with the beautiful golden eyes. Brendon knew what he had to do.
“Ryan, I have to tell you something,” said Brendon shakily, opening his eyes and turning to the older boy.
“What is it, Bren?”
“I-I never told you, because, I didn’t know how you would handle it. But, I-I, I have to…” trailed off Brendon, looking down. Ryan brushed Brendon’s hair out of his face and trailed his thumb down his lip.
“Brendon. Just tell me,” murmured Ryan soothingly into Brendon’s ear. Brendon closed his eyes and shivered at the contact.
“I think… I think I’ve fallen for you,” whispered Brendon eventually. He waited, waited for the gasp in shock, or that shout of ‘fag!’ But, it didn’t come. His eyes remained closed as he wondered… what was Ryan doing?
Suddenly, Brendon felt a pair of warm lips on his own, pressing softly. Brendon sat there, stunned, feeling butterflies erupt in his stomach. Opening his eyes, he saw those familiar honey eyes staring back at him. Ryan bit his lower lip, looking away quickly. Brendon could see a small smile on the boy’s lips.
“You just… which means…” stumbled Brendon. Ryan giggled and nodded.
“Which means, I love you too,” whispered Ryan and kissed him again. This time, Brendon kissed back and at that moment, time stopped for the two boys. They continued to sit in each other’s embrace still, Ryan’s forehead rested on Brendon’s.
“Bren?” came Ryan’s soft voice. Brendon’s eyes met with Ryan’s as he smiled.
“Will you… will you stay with me? To the end?” asked Ryan with a scared look in his eyes. Brendon held Ryan’s hands affectionately and placed a kiss on his lips, pulling him nearer. Brendon felt Ryan’s heart beat faster as they lay together on the bed.
“Forever and a day.”