‘Frank? Frank? What’s wrong?’ I heard E-Jay ask. I sat up slowly, rubbing my head as a headache developed.
‘I don’t know.’ I whispered. Pete was standing in the door way, laughing softly.
‘What’s wrong with Gerard? Did I do something wrong?’ I asked, still rubbing my head.
‘No, Frank. Everything’s fine.’ She said, grabbing my hand away from my head. I nodded slowly, averting my gaze to the dark brown carpet.
‘Stay here, okay? I’ll get Mikey.’ E-Jay left down the hall, leaving me with Pete who was sniggering. I sighed and rested my head in my hands. It wasn't long till Mikey was at my side.
‘Dude, it’s not your fault. Gerard’s just going through a few things, y‘know? He said he’ll explain everything when he’s ready.’ Mikey said, taking my wrist and dragging me to his bedroom. I played many-a-rounds of MTX with him. It helped me get Gerard off my mind for a while.
‘You cheat!’ I yelled as he knocked the controller out of my hand.
‘You snooze, you lose!’ He giggled, racing off along the track. I was better at corners, he was better at small jumps. Either way, it was pretty even. While he was getting ready to turn the last corner, I shoved my foot in his face. He screamed and fell off the bed. I giggled loudly, falling off as well.
‘I am so going to kill you!’ I yelled, pouncing on him while he rolled on the floor. I pinned his arms over his head, sitting on his stomach.
‘Fuck, you’re so heavy!’ He giggled, trying to roll over. I finally gave up and let him push me over. He sat on my chest, his crotch in my face. I smirked up at him before head butting his crotch. He fell to the side, clutching himself. I laughed harder, pounding my fists on the floor. Mikey rolled around, groaning. My giggle fit subsided with a few chuckles, and then my mind got to work. It seemed I couldn’t stop thinking about Gerard. I wanted so badly to go see him, to find out what I had done wrong.
Either I was too easy to read or Mikey could read minds since he got up, rubbing his balls.
‘He’s fine. I swear. He’s going to talk to you, just let him deal with this.’ He said, his voice slightly higher than normal.
‘Can’t you tell me what I did wrong?’ I asked, wringing my hands together.
‘I can’t explain it properly. Plus, what he has to say will shock you. I’d rather not be there.’ He said smiling. I nodded slowly, thinking.
‘Come on, let’s go to the mall.’ Mikey said, grabbing my arm. He dragged me from the house, yelling out a goodbye to Gerard and E-Jay. He grabbed the car keys from the hallway table and literally threw me in the car, slamming the door on me.
I wasn't sure if Mikey knew how to drive. He handled it well…. Till he had to stop at the traffic lights. He’d always stop over the line or too far back. The other drivers were pissed. I sat in my seat, slightly scared. When we finally pulled into the car park, I launched myself from the car. The people in the car park all looked at me. I regained myself and stood straight, waving at those staring.
‘I hate you so much right now.’ I whispered to Mikey as we walked into the mall. I hadn’t been to the mall yet, so the new shops were just calling me. We wandered through a few shops together, laughing at some of the clothes. I held a pink dress up to him, giggling.
‘It suits you.’ I said, putting it back on the rack. He whacked me over the head.
After a while we went and got food. A lot of food. I watched in amazement as he scoffed it all down. I left Mikey’s side to go investigate Parachute. The first thing I ran to, was the jewelry. Lip rings, nose rings, necklaces and general rings caught my eye.
‘Excuse me?’ The lady behind the counter asked. I looked away from the shining metal.
‘Are you Frank Iero?’ She asked, smiling. I looked at her for a moment, trying to figure out if I knew her. Her face was one of a total stranger, yet she did hold a resemblance. Maybe it was her fashion. Everyone looked the same.
‘Yes.’ I said quietly. She smiled wider and ducked under the desk, only to re-appear seconds later with a small black box wrapped with a red ribbon in her hands. It wasn't small as in a ring box, it was at least the size of shoe box.
‘I was told to give you this.’ She said, holding the box out to me. I took it slowly, waiting for her to snatch it away and laugh. But she didn’t.
‘I was also told to tell you not to open it till you’re alone. Have a good day, sir.’ She said happily. I looked at her for a moment and left the shop. I sat down at one of the tables outside the Starbucks that was right next door to Parachute. Mikey had disappeared but that didn’t bother me. My mind was set on the gift I had just been given.
“It might be a bomb.”
I twisted the box in my hands, resisting the urge to shake it. I slid my finger under the bow, feeling the silk on my fingers.
‘What’s that?’ I jumped as Mikey slid into the booth. I shrugged my shoulders, still touching the ribbon.
‘Where’d you get it?’
‘A lady gave it to me.’ I said. He looked at me then shrugged it off
‘Let’s go. Gerard called.’ He said. I jumped up automatically. I grabbed my box and ran to the car. Mikey walked very slowly, taking his time. I wasn't as terrified of the drive home as I thought I’d be. Mikey’s attention was on Gerard’s radio, which resulted in 3 near collisions. I hadn’t realized we’d gotten back till my door was swung open. E-Jay stood there with a grin.
‘Come on.’ She said dragging me into the house. She took the box from me and pushed me down the stairs to Gerard’s room. Gerard sat on the floor, art book in front of him. He hadn’t noticed my presence yet, still drawing an unusual picture. I edged forward, trying to get a better look. Mikey had said Gerard was an amazing drawer but I hadn’t believed him. I was dumbfounded when I saw the picture. It looked like a photograph, the lines perfect, as was the shading. The picture was of a little boy, laying on the grass with a man on top of him. The boy was crying, screaming as it seemed. I almost felt bad for the kid, even though it was just a drawing. The emotions were visible. The pain the boy felt, the fear on his face. I looked closer at the face. My heart raced as I recognized the boy. My whole body stopped, even my breathing.