Frank catches Gerard in the bathroom.
Frank crept silently along the second floor of Gerard's house. He couldn't sleep. He was feeling troubled by thoughts of Jamia. He missed Cherry and Lily. He had come here to forget, and while Gerard had somewhat helped him do that, the heavy feeling in his heart was always just lurking around the corner, waiting to attack him the second he was alone.
It also hurt to see Gerard hurting like he was. Gerard was a kind, sweet person. He didn't deserve this. He only wondered why Lindsey would have turned on him so suddenly. He couldn't believe it when Mikey had told him. While he admittedly had never known Lindsey very well, Gerard had always made her sound like an angel who could do no wrong. Yet when Mikey talked about her, it was like hearing about a totally different person.
Then again, he figured Mikey never liked her much to begin with. He remembered when Lindsey and Gerard first started dating, and Mikey hated her. He could swear he heard Mikey growl like a hostile dog every time she came around, her arms wrapped possessively around Gerard. He heard Mikey tell Gerard a lot of things. Things like, "She's using you for your money!" or "She's taking advantage of the fact that you just got out of a break up!". Frank knew that Mikey was only scared for Gerard. Gee had taken his separation with Eliza very hard, and Mikey saw that and didn't want it happening again. Not so soon, anyway. But one day, Mikey said something that Frank had never forgotten when he spoke directly to Mikey about what had been dubbed "the Lyn-Z issue".
"She's not good enough for him." Mikey had said to Frank. "She's no you."
She's no you.
What was that even supposed to mean?
Did it mean what he thinks it meant? What he wanted it to mean? Frank had always had an inkling that Mikey knew about his past attractions to Gerard. It was a bit obvious wasn't it? Frank had even entertained the idea that perhaps the reason Mikey had disliked Lindsey, or at least part of it, was because he knew Frank had feelings for Gee, and he was simply doing what friends do when their friend's crush got stolen by someone else. Hate on the opposition. And clearly, the whole "she's no you" comment is meant to imply that he agreed that Frank was a better match for Gerard anyway.
Mikey had been so insistent that Frank stay with Gerard while he was away. Frank had at first felt uneasy about imposing on Gerard by staying at his home, but Mikey kept saying it was for everyone’s own good. Had he forced them together for a particular reason? Was this a setup?
Frank shook his head violently. What the hell was he thinking? Frank hadn't thought of Gerard in that way for quite some time now. Was it really that late? He checked his cell. 4:32 AM. Guess it was.
He was about to turn away when he heard a noise. A slight stumbling sound from nearby. He checked in Bandit's room to see if she had made it, but she was still sound asleep. He then went over to Gerard's room. He peered inside, but there was no one in the bedroom.
'That's strange.', Frank thought. He was about to turn back when he saw the bathroom door in the bedroom was ajar, and a light was on. While Frank was not entirely sure what would possess him to walk in on someone while they were in the bathroom knowingly, he figured he was simply eager to know Gerard was awake along with him. So, he crept forward, stuck his head into the doorway, and screamed.
Gerard was sitting on the edge of the bathtub, absolutely covered in blood. He was shirtless, and there were gashes and cuts all over his pale skin, except for his lower arms, neck and face. He had a makeshift blade in his hand, and he was looking up at Frank with wide eyes like a child who had gotten caught with marker all over themselves.
"WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING?!?", Frank panicked, grabbing as much tissue as he could and dabbing them over the wounds in an attempt to stop the bleeding.
"Shh!", Gerard hushed Frank, "You'll wake Bandit!"
"YEAH. Not exactly my concern right now, Gerard!"
"Would you calm down?", Gerard hissed, "It's not a big deal. It's just something... I do. It helps me relax."
Frank let out a maniacal laugh. "Relax? RELAX?!? HOW THE FUCK ARE YOU SUPPOSED TO RELAX? YOU'RE FUCKING BLEEDING EVERYWHERE!"
"It's the only thing that helps anymore, Frank!", Gerard pleaded as he watched Frank continue to tend to his wounds.
"Well fucking find something else! Jigsaw puzzles, do your sketches, but for god sakes, not this!", Frank yelled, "Dammit Gerard, I thought you were done with this shit!"
"Well I thought Lindsey was fucking done with drugs!", Gerard retorted.
"That doesn't give you the right to disappoint me like she did you!"
Gerard fell silent. Frank knew he had hit a nerve. But he didn't care. It was something that had to be done. This had to be stopped. This wasn't acceptable. Tears filled Gerard's hazel eyes and they cascaded down his flushed cheeks.
"I'm sorry.", he said in barely a whisper.
Frank patched up the last bleeding cut with some gauze from the cabinet. He reached up and wiped the tears from Gerard's face.
"C'mon. ", Frank spoke gently; "I'll stay with you tonight."
Gerard nodded and Frank helped him up. Frank led him to the bed and they both laid down together. Gerard wrapped his arms around Frank, and Frank stroked his hand through Gerard's long, cherry red hair repeatedly. To anyone else, this would have been clearly a lover's display. Or, you know, just plain weird. But if there was one thing the boys of My Chemical Romance were known for to anyone who actually knew them, it was their closeness and comfort with one another. So to Frank and Gerard, this was a perfectly normal way to treat each other on a bad night. And Gerard wouldn't have had it any other way. He embraced Frank tighter, and he felt Frank plant a kiss on the top of his head. Bliss.
Bandit and Frank were alone. Gerard had gone to the store. On the floor of her bedroom, Bandit was introducing Frank to all her stuff toys, and boy, did she have a lot of them. Literally hundreds. Frank was baffled as to how Bandit had managed to come up with a name for each and every one. They were all quite inventive too. There was a "McGiggles" and a "Madam Monster", there was a "Sunny Simon" and a "Princess Nemo". Frank figured she must have gotten her ability for good wordplay from her father.
"Mommy helps naming.", Bandit said suddenly, as though she knew what he had been thinking about.
"Oh.", was all he had to say as he held a lavender stuffed octopus in his hands.
"I miss mommy....", Bandit pouted.
"I know, sweetie.", Frank gave her a sad smile and pulled her into his lap, embracing her gently.
"When she coming back?"
"I don't know."
Frank suddenly felt himself tear up, and he had to suppress a sob. He felt so frustrated at himself for not being able to answer that for her. Perhaps because he knew, thousands of miles away, Cherry and Lily were asking Jamia the same question about him. And it resulted in the same answer.
Next chapter: Frank and Gerard get intimate, but Gerard is facing more than he realizes.