Ever read My Sister Jodie? Yeah, this is me basically writing the MCR Version of that (:
Gerard. It was the first word I ever said. Most babies first words are mama, dada, drinkie or teddy. Maybe everybody says the thing they love the best. Well I said Gerard. My brother.
I said his name first thing every morning "Gerard? Gerard! Gerard, please wake up!"
Gerard was always hopeless in the mornings unlike me. I was always up early - At around 6AM usually, or sometimes even before that. When I was younger, I'd bring out my teddies and I'd play with them. I know it's kinda girly, but they were fun. They'd go for walks up and down my duvet and then afterwards I'd let them have some honey to eat. Not real honey of course, but I used my imagination.
I wasn't allowed to eat anything so early in the morning so I just had to wait until I was allowed to get up. I was fine once I could read. Sometimes I'd get through a whole book before our alarm went off. And then when I was done I would lay back, stare at the ceiling and invent my own stories in my head.
I'd do this for as long as I possibly could and then I'd get up and get into Gerard's bed and start telling him the story. They were always about two brothers. Sometimes they were in a famous rock band, sometimes they just lived together and sometimes I remembered other stories I had read like The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe and used us as the main characters.
When Gerard was wide awake he usually took over the story. I loved it when Gerard told me stories, he always made things come to life. They were always much better than mine.
I begged and begged him to write them down properly for me, so I could read them whenever I wanted but he could never be bothered.
"You write them down!" He said "You're the one that wants to be a writer."
I wanted to write my own stories and illustrate them.
"I could help you with the ideas," Gerard suggested "You do the drawings and I'll colour them in."
"Okay," I agreed "But so long as you do it properly and carefully!" Gerard sometimes coloured peoples skin blue, their hair green and nearly always went over the lines just for the fun of it.
"Okay, okay, I'll do it properly..." Gerard laughed "But that won't be my real job. I want to be an actor or a singer. Reckon I could make it?"
I nodded "Maybe one of my books will be turned into a play and you could be the starring role? They might even turn it into a musical!"
"Yeah, I'll be an overnight success and I'll earn loads and loads of money and we'll live in a mansion together."
It was one of our favorite fantasies. I often took to drawing a picture of our mansion towers on a piece of paper and doing all the colouring. Once I even tried to draw in every indivual blade of grass but had to see sense after half-an-hour of delicate dabbing. My arms was killing me afterwards.
I knew just where it'd be too. I knew I would walk right up to the gates and I'd know how to get in. I'd know how to push the lions snout on our fancy door knocker so that our door sprung open and Gerard would be in there waiting for me...
I'm not stupid. I know it's not really real.
Then one morning everything changed. We were having breakfast as we normally do on a Wednesday morning. I was eating a honey sandwich. I liked to open up the sandwich and lick out the honey and let it leak across my tongue. But I only did that when Mum wasn't looking, because she was very fussy about tabke manners and germs and other stuff that Mums worry about. She was forever nagging at Gerard to sit up straight at the table and to stop banging his spoon against the bowl as he ate his cornflakes. Gerard bent further over so that his body was in an S shape and he banged his spoon against the bowl so much it nearly cracked it. Mum took hold of him by the shoulders and gave him a good shaking.
"Would you stop doing that to annoy me, you stupid boy!" She cried, going shake shake shake.
Gerard's head rocked backwards and forwards on his stiff shoulders.
"You're going to hurt him!" Dad told her, looking up from his newspaper and looking nervously at Gerard and our Mom.
"She's not hurting me," Gerard told him, waggling his head himself and then started da-da-da-ing part of the song 'Bohemian Rhapsody' song when everyone bangs their heads to the music.
"Stop making such a stupid row! I suppose you think you're funny!" Mum huffed, folding her arms but letting go of Gerard.
But as usual, Dad was laughing a long with Gerard and shaking his own head "You're a right head-case, our Gerard." He said.
Mum sighed, clearly irritated "Trust you to enourage her Donald. Why do you always take Gerards side?"
"Because he loves me!" Gerard said, batting his eyelashes like a girl at Dad.
He did too. Gerard was always in trouble for staying out too late and bunking off school. Mom could shake his head until it snapped right off, but Gerard wouldn't care. Dad could still make him feel guilty for his actions and make him hang his head and cry.
Dad would never say a bad word against Gerard.
"It's not his fault. Okay, he's a bit cheeky here and there... He's always been a good kid, he just got in with the wrong crowd right? He's no worse than his mates at school."
"Shut up!" Mum snapped "Moorcroft's a rubbish school. The children don't have a proper education, most of them are in trouble with the police... And he's no better! Just look at him!"
I thought Gerard looked lovely. He used to have short black hair but he grew it out and dyed it red and cut it all choppy. Dad said he looked like a pot of jam - he'd spread him on toast if he didn't watch out. Mum said Gerard had ruined his hair and now he stood out too clearly. Gerard was delighted. He wanted to stand out.
Luckily for Mum, Gerard couldn't get any piercings or tattoos because he had a phobia of needles. But Gerard got pens and doodled tattoos all over himself and brought himself a couple of fake piercings but he confessed to me that they dug into his skin and he disliked them. He only wore them to look cooler in front of his friends. They were convinced that they were real.
Then there was his shoes. Mum was in charge when it came to clothes. Dad wasn't allowed to give Gerard any more money for clothes. He'd told him about his school shoes rubbing his feet so Dad gave him some money to buy some new ones. Gerard went out and brought some new goth boots that ended just below his knee. Mum was furious and Dad had to keep apologising to Mum. They tried to take them back, but Gerard had binned the reciept so of course they wouldn't accept them. And Dad had said "You might as well let him wear them now, now that we can't take them back..."
Gerard was wearing his clunky shoes that 'rubbed' him now and his grey Moorcroft uniform. He'd done his best to customize it, pinning funny badgers all over his blazer and inking cartoon characters all over his school tie. Mum started on a new nag about the tie, but she was interrupted by the letterbox banging.
"Post, Mikey. Go and get it, pet."
I'm Mikey. I only weight a kilo when I was born and was still so little when they were allowed to bring me home that Dad could cradle me in one of his hands. They were very worried about Gerard's reaction to me. Gerard had always been a energetic and destructive child, ripping the heads off Action Men, kicking his teddies around his room and smashing his rocking horse to pieces. But he was incredibly careful with me. He held me very gently and said I was the best little brother in the whole world.
I picked up the post. Nothing intesting, I thought as I flicked through the post. And then I found a letter addressed to Mr and Mrs Way - Mum and Dad. A proper letter in a big white envelope, not a bill.
I looked at it curiously. I hoped it wasn't a letter from Moorcroft complaining about Gerard. I knew that him and his friends had been caught smoking once or twice and they sometimes bunked off school at lunch time to get chips and sometimes they didn't bother to go back. Gerard didn't like smoking he confessed to me, it had him feel sick and dizzy and he also said the school chips were much better than the pale greasy ones in polystyrene pouches from the chippy. But he was trying to keep in with his mates Bert, Matt and Jeff. They were the three toughest boys in Gerard's class. If you kept them on your side, you were laughing.
"Mikey?" Mum called, coming out into the corridor.
I froze. I had been hoping to shove the letter some place safe so that we could open it before our parents and if it was anything too bad, we wouldn't show them. But Mum whipped it out of my hand before I could say anything else.
"It's addressed to Dad too." I said quickly. He'd be easier on Gerard, he always was.
"Yep." Mum said, dismissively as she opened it.
There was a letter inside (Of course) and some sort of brochure. I peered at it the best I coul. I saw the words boarding school. I gasped, my heart beating fasster. They couldn't send Gerard away!
"No, Mum!" I cried, my voice a pathetic little squek.
"No what?" She asked, still reading.
"Don't send Gerard away!" I begged.
Mum laughed at me "Don't be silly," She said, walking back into the living room. She flapped the letter in front of Dad's face.
"Look, Donald, look!" She cried, smiling "Here it is in black and white!"
He blinked at the piece of paper "Well I'll be damned!"
Gerard pushed away his bowl of cornflakes and got up from the table, not paying much attention as usual.
"Sit down, Gerard." Mum demanded.
"But I'll be late for school." Gerard told her.
"It doesn't matter just this once." Mum snapped "Sit down! You too, Mikey. Your Dad and I have something to tell you."
"What?" Gerard asked, sitting on the edge of his chair. He guessed "You're getting a divorce?"
"Don't be stupid!"
"You're going to have another baby?"
"Shut up! Just let us tell you what we have to tell you! Jeez Gerard, you're going wild now-a-days. It's just aswell you'll be making a move."
"You are sending her off to this boarding school!" I wailed.
"You're geting rid of me?" Gerard asked, looking startled "What boarding school?"
"No, no," Dad said quickly "We're all going! We've got new jobs, me and your Mom."
Me and Geard glanced at each other "You'll be teachers?" I asked, doubtfully.
Dad laughed "God help any child that I have to teach read and write! No, no, I'm going to be the school caretaker and your Mum will be the cook."
"Let's see the brochure then," Gerard demanded. Mum handed it over to him "It looks terribly old fashioned."
I looked at the picture on the front and gasped "It looks just like mansion towers! Will we really live here?"
"There's a basement flat for staff. We'll live in there," Mum told us.
Gerard folded his arms "I don't wanna go. And neither does Mikey. Do we Mikey?"
He saw me hesitating "You can't seriously want to go there!"
I looked at him helplessly "But... I think I do..."
"Fine!" snapped Gerard "Mikey can go if he wants, but I'm not going!"
"I can't go without you!" I cried, bursting into tears.
"You've reduced your brother to tears!" Mom yelled at Gerard "I hope you're happy Gerard Arthur Way!"
"Oh poor Mikey! Why does nobody care about me!?" Gerard yelled, before storming out of the house.
But that night when we were in bed, I started crying again, he came and got into my bed. "Do you really want to go to this school?"
"Yes, but not without you!"
He sighed "Fine, I'll go."
"Yeah. I'll hate it, but I'll come, just to look after you."