In the recovery ward, of all places... Just a Rydon oneshot based on Camisado + This is the Best Day Ever (by MCR)
Anyways, this is intended to be a oneshot, but if I get reviews and ratings and whatnot, then there's a good chance I'll add at least another chapter and less of a cliffhanger ending. Sorry for the TL;DR there, I'll be quiet now. Enjoy!
Sunlight and white sheets and blinking machine monitors, everywhere. The scent of dead skin on the linoleum floor. Darkness. But as curtains were drawn open, the brightness flooded the room, drowning everything therein, specifically, a thin, pale boy with dark hair and the shadows of sleeplessness under his eyes. The starchy sunlight filtered through his eyelids in a flash of red, waking him from his sleep just as the nurse guilty of letting all the damned light in left the room. The hospital room that the boy had been alone in since he'd arrived a week before. That he was now, suddenly, sharing. Upon running a hand across his face and blinking, Ryan noticed the new arrival with slight contempt. He had, actually, been enjoying his solitude. Sitting up, careful not to strike his wrists on anything for fear of pain, Ryan gazed at the other boy in the newly acquired light.
The new boy couldn't have been much older than Ryan, and he was quite pretty. His dark hair was swept over his soft face, which looked smooth and oh so touchable. Ryan's guess was that he was probably one of those types that got whatever he wanted just by asking nicely, with a smile. Not like Ryan himself, who practically had to scream just to be noticed. The boy was almost angelic and he had an air of innocence about him.
Which left the question, for Ryan, of just what he was doing in the recovering suicide ward of the hospital.
Ryan, absorbed in his staring, didn't notice when the newcomer's eyes flicked open a little sliver, and glanced at the twig of a boy on the bed next to him. He smiled, and Ryan jumped a bit.
“You're staring. Is there something on my face?” He asked Ryan in a sleep-rough voice. Ryan just blushed and looked down at his wrists, trying to hide the medical-taped stupidity behind his back.
“Yes. I mean, no. Sorry.” He replied quickly, “Just, you. Um. Took over my room.” He blurted. The new guy raised his eyebrows, smirking.
“I didn't know this was a private suite.” He commented, waving an arm across the room to indicate the many other empty hospital beds. Suicide attempts were apparently rare in this city, but Ryan figured it was just that hardly anyone was pathetic enough to do it wrong and survive. Ryan looked discreetly over at the new boy's wrists – nothing there, they were spotless and perfect like the rest of him.
“It's not.” He mumbled, ducking his head. “I'm sorry.” He heard a chuckle.
“Don't worry.” The other said, “In places like this, I’m sure everyone's a bit touchy about their privacy.” He wasn't wrong, really.
The nurse of Ryan's ward wasn't necessarily unfriendly. She was somewhat stiff and official, but Ryan supposed she was one of those people who didn't like the idea of suicide. She probably found Ryan himself unpleasant. With Brendon, though, she acted like a giddy schoolgirl, despite the fact that he was (supposedly) recovering from a suicide attempt. Brendon seemed to sort of have that effect on people. The gaggles of visitors he got every day proved that. And what visitors they were. Especially that frightening pink-haired guy who kept winking at Ryan, and the weird William kid who'd given Ryan that weird hug. Of course, Ryan himself wasn't exactly immune to the effects of Brendon. Actually, he'd hardly been able to look away from the other since his arrival. While he'd been a bit offish the first few days, Ryan now couldn't resist chattering away to Brendon every second he could spare, despite the nurse giving him some rather terrifying looks. He couldn't resist talking about music or movies or showing off some of his lyrics to Brendon, nor could he resist stealing the occasional glance at the younger boy's sleeping form across the room when he couldn't sleep. And, in the midst of all this, he kept trying to figure out just why Brendon was there, recovering... But by the end of a week, Ryan was none the wiser as to why Brendon, the clearly gifted, handsome, well liked boy, would try to take his own life.
“Hey, Brendon.” Ryan said one day (which he thought was a Sunday, but couldn't be sure – it was easy to lose time in the Ward), “How long are you supposed to be here for anyways?” A week ago, Ryan might not have been concerned; he might even have wanted Brendon to leave as quickly as he'd arrived. But now he was worried, worried that Brendon would leave. While he did enjoy his solitude after what had happened to him, Ryan had unearthed a certain attachment of his to Brendon, and while he could probably leave the Ward just as soon as Brendon did... He somehow didn't want to. He almost wished he and Brendon both could stay there until the world ended – or a least until they wanted to leave together...
“I don't know,” Brendon responded unsurely to his question. “They want me here at least two weeks. Maybe by this time next week I’ll be on to the next place.” Brendon sighed, a sad, distant look on his face, and stared out the big, open window at the green, blossoming spring scenery stories below. Ryan frowned; he didn't understand Brendon at all, but he didn't sound really happy. And a boy like Brendon didn't deserve to be unhappy.
“What do you mean the next place?” Ryan asked, hearing his voice almost crack, “You mean like... you... do you mean heav... Uh..”
“Heaven?” Brendon asked, raising an eyebrow at Ryan and chuckling. Ryan felt his face heat up with a blush. “No, Ryan, I don't think so. I’m in a recovery ward, not a terminally ill, gonna-die-any-second ward.” And thank God for that, Ryan thought.
“Well, um. What did you mean then?” Ryan didn't get an answer before a group of Brendon's visitors once again stormed in, making a huge racket and freaking the nurse out. They were all shouting various things, including several nicknames for Brendon and profanity (Ryan was almost certain he'd heard a greasy-black-haired short guy named Frank yelling about penile augmentation), and two of them, Pete and Gerard, waved at Ryan. But after that, they were too busy coddling Brendon to notice the skinny boy with the bandages on his wrists, just like always.
A couple nights after that, Brendon had a panic attack. It wasn't simply a bit of freaking out and crying, it was a full-scale, shaking and shivering, sobbing and twitching fit. He told Ryan the next day not to worry too much about it, it was a commonplace occurrence and it was only because the nurse had forgotten to give Brendon his pills (because she was so busy flirting and giggling with him). Ryan hadn't even noticed Brendon taking pills, but maybe it was due to his watching Brendon's big brown eyes and his movements and trying to figure out, continually, just what had put him in the recovery ward. Ryan himself took medication nowadays for Depression, by diagnosis of a very annoying psychiatrist at the hospital, and he had to wonder if he was overstepping things – Maybe Brendon was just crazy like him and that's why he was there. But, probably not. By the time Ryan had gotten to the point of brainstorming ways Brendon could've tried to off himself, he decided he was going way, way, way too far. He'd just have to suck it up and ask.
“What are the pills for?” He breathed during an especially quiet morning, to Brendon's apparent chagrin. The boy looked down at his little plastic cup of pills before tossing them into his mouth, swallowing them, and pushing them down his throat with a little Styrofoam cup of water, then stacking the cups neatly in the middle of the tray on his bed. He kicked all his covers to the edge of the bed, pointlessly smoothed several creases in his pajamas, and twiddled his thumbs before looking over at Ryan, not making eye contact.
“They're.... It's Methadone.” Ryan's eyes widened, and he instantly looked down to pick at his bandages to hide his shock. That was it. Drugs. Of course that wouldn't involve any obvious signs like gauze or wrappings. Of course. But why?
“Oh...” Ryan said meekly. Brendon just nodded.
“I'm getting over an addiction.” Brendon said, like he really needed to explain, “To heroin. It was just a stupid thing I did, Ryan.” Ryan shrugged, hunching his shoulders. “I'm just glad they sent me here instead of rehab, first.” Ryan was glad too, actually, though he couldn't guess WHY they'd done that. Unless...
“You overdosed, didn't you?” He asked. Brendon looked like he might cry, which just made Ryan want to do the same, and murmured a small 'yes... sorry'. “Well you don't have to apologize. Just... Why are you here anyways? Shouldn't you be in rehab or something?” Brendon looked taken aback.
“Well, I. When I overdosed they kinda gave me the choice to either go to rehab for a while or go here for however long it took for me to get off the drug... And rehab scares me... so I came here.” Ryan shook his head. While he wasn't exactly in the position to scold, considering what was underneath the medical tape on his wrists, but he couldn't help but be somewhat mad at Brendon for what he'd done. They'd only known each other for two weeks but at that moment, Ryan felt disappointment – and pity – like one would feel for one's oldest friend.
“Ryan, you can't just lie around in a hospital forever, you know. You've gotta leave sometime. Sometime soon.” Spencer was saying as he tapped his knees in a nervous rhythm, and Ryan just shoved his face into his pillow. Fuck leaving. He didn't want to leave.
“I don't want to.” He stated. Spencer was his best friend, and had the marvelous tendency to act like his mother. “Why can't I stay here? Not like I’m taking up any much-needed space.” Spencer sighed overdramatically.
“Look, dude, I know you need to recover and shit, I just seriously doubt you need more than two weeks to do it in. Anyways, hospitals do cost money.”
“My dad's money.” Ryan muttered unhappily.
“Exactly.” Spencer replied. The sun was beginning to set, and soon enough the nurse would come by and make her 'nighttime' rounds, thus getting rid of the nag that was Spencer. The hospital didn't really operate on a night owl schedule, and due to how lonely Ryan got early in the evening, he couldn't quite say he wanted his friend to leave, but if Spencer was going to get all demanding and motherly, then, well, maybe he could.
“Spence, please. Just... give me another week or so. I’m not ready to go.” Ryan sighed, and Spencer smiled slightly.
“Alright, fine. But only cus I love ya.” The small sound of a woman delicately clearing her throat resounded through the empty room, signaling the nurse's entrance.
“Excuse me, sir, visiting hours are over.” She said, a tight smile on her lips.
“Sure thing.” Spencer replied. He gave Ryan a quick, one armed hug before trudging to the door, where he grinned at the nurse before walking out. The nurse gave Brendon, who was sleeping, a look that reminded Ryan of a look one would give a baby kitten, then turned on her heel and left.
“Goodnight to you, too.” Ryan said softly, pulling covers over his head against the slowly approaching nighttime chill.
“Ryan?” A voice asked, causing Ryan to yank the blankets back off again. Brendon was sitting up in bed, not looking at all like someone who had just woken up from a long nap. Ryan scraped himself up, fighting off sleep, to look at the gorgeous boy.
“What?” He asked sleepily.
“Just... when you leave here... you know...”
“When Spencer forces me to come back to real life?” Ryan suggested. Brendon nodded, licking his lips and blinking slowly.
“When you get out, don't forget about me.” Ryan was stunned, beyond answering. He'd never forget Brendon, of course, but Brendon specifically requesting such a thing... Ryan simply didn't know what to do with it.
“I won't, Brendon.” He assured. “I don't think I could forget about you if I tried to.” Brendon sighed.
“I don't know about that. I can be pretty forgettable sometimes.” His voice was hushed and sad, and Ryan furrowed his brow at it.
“You're too amazing to be forgettable.” He muttered to Brendon. “But believe me, I won't forget you.”
“Good. And Ryan...?” Brendon was falling asleep now, his voice getting fainter and his eyelids flicking closed.
“Please come back and get me out of here...”
Brendon had kissed Ryan the first time on a Tuesday. It was unexpected – they had been talking, chatting like they always did, when Brendon clambered, weakly but gracefully, out of his hospital bed and over to Ryan's, where he planted his soft lips on the thin boy's chapped ones. Then they broke apart in surprise - and then kissed again. And again. And so on, until the nurse's cart banging into the door startled them back into their proper place, slightly askew. Ryan himself found this occurrence brilliant, and desperately wanted to continue, to just kiss Brendon forever, but Brendon being who he was acted sultry and aloof for the next few hours. Which, truth be told ,was about as long as he could last.
He might have been hoping to become addicted to Ryan instead of heroin. If only it were really possible. But, reality dictated that instead, Brendon would have to keep taking methadone. And then fate dictated that he would stop being so diligent about this, forgetting every day and neglecting his medication, and putting himself in a worse state with every forgotten pill that landed on the floor and rolled under the bed when he hopped up to attack Ryan with kisses. If only reality wasn't such a bitch, he thought, Ryan could be saving him, rather than slowly, unknowingly, sending him back into addiction.
Ryan woke in the wee hours of Saturday morning, two days before he had to leave the hospital, to sobbing and crashing. His eyes shot open and he jumped up in bed, to see that Brendon curled in a ball on the floor, crying and clenching his jaw and shaking like a tattered, worn out leaf. Gasping, Ryan launched himself to the floor next to Brendon, putting his arms around the boy.
“Brendon!” He whimpered, “Brendon, what's wrong? What do you need? What's going on?” questions spilled frantically out of Ryan's mouth, but Brendon just looked up with half closed and teary eyes, grimacing in pain
“Help...” He muttered, his eyes closing briefly.
“What do I do! Oh my god, holy shit, what's happening?!” Ryan was panicking in the worst sense of the word, forgetting his surroundings and the very obvious solutions to everything. As Ryan ranted pathetically at nothing, Brendon went almost still, shivering only slightly, his eyes shutting tight. Being in the state he was in, Ryan only panicked more, checking pulses and not feeling anything (mostly because his own pulse was going too fast and he couldn't tell either way)
“Oh god, Brendon!” Ryan choked out, pulling the other boy into his arms, “Please, please don't die on me! You don't deserve this, and, and”- he sniffled, biting back tears, for the longest two minutes there had ever been - until Brendon suddenly, slowly blinked.
“Dude.” He rasped, “Calm down. I just need my medication.” Ryan almost shrieked in relief.
“Oh my god, Brendon, I thought you were dead, please don't die! Are you okay? What do I do! Oh my god...” Ryan carried on through Brendon instructing him to press the small red button that called the nurse, and then through the nurse arriving with several others, through them settling Brendon back into his bed, giving him a shot of something, and then giving him his pills, and he cried all the way until the doctor had finally left and the nurse had gotten him back into bed with a cup of tea, writing all Ryan's concern off as, simply, shock. Ryan would've been offended, but it wasn't her fault he and Brendon were secretive as could be about their kissing and whatever else. He crawled over to Brendon's bed later, only to find that he was already asleep. It took Ryan hours to do the same, with all the thoughts racing through his head.
“Remember, you can't forget about me.” Brendon whined to Ryan as they sat on Brendon's bed together, hands clenched. Spencer was checking Ryan out of the hospital today. It felt peculiarly like the end of the world.
“You know I won't.” Ryan said, setting his jaw so he wouldn't cry and ignoring the ache it was giving him, “how much longer do you have to be here?” Brendon shook his head.
“I don't know. However much longer it takes. Ryan, please don't leave me here, I have nothing to live for out there and”- Ryan shushed him by putting a finger to his lips, and glancin over at the door – Spencer and the receptionist were right outside. Brendon nodded knowingly.
“Brenny, listen. I’m going to come get you out of here as soon as they let you go. The very second, in fact. I’m going to visit you every day and you're going to get better, and then you're going to stay with me. Okay?” Brendon nodded sadly.
“It'll take too long.” He stated softly
“I know, Bren.” Ryan replied, “But it'll be over someday. It can't go on forever.” In that moment, Ryan really believed his words – he just hoped they would be true in the long run.
Three weeks later, Brendon had almost recovered – and then relapsed. Twice. It would never end, Ryan was convinced. He sat with Brendon every day from the beginning to the end of visiting hours, and he made sure Brendon took every pill presented to him, but somehow, Brendon just couldn't recover. He just couldn't understand it. Or, not until the nurse found the tiniest amount of heroin somehow in Brendon's possession.
It was unbelievable. As much as Brendon wanted to get out of the hospital... How could he do this to himself? Ryan felt almost like... No, he felt betrayed, completely betrayed. And the worst part was – that was the final straw. After an incident of the likes, the hospital had no choice but to send Brendon to a rehabilitation center. He didn't know for sure, but Ryan could only assume it would be Brendon's worst nightmare realized.
Visiting hours were few and far between - only an hour long on weekdays and three on Saturdays. None on Sunday. Brendon looked wan, and close to tears, almost constantly. His skin was sallow, and he sat on the edge of his bed as still as could be every time Ryan came in. It was enough to make Ryan cry for hours afterwards – all he could ever think about was Brendon locked up in that awful place, and the countless movies and TV shows where people were sent to rehab only to be locked away like prisoners, tied down on their beds, fed next to nothing and talked to like they were psychotic, like they were beyond help or simple logic. And Brendon's behavior could only add to his fears. Almost a month had passed since Brendon's incarceration, and though he was physically better - his addiction nearly cured – he was becoming more withdrawn each day. As Ryan was leaving Brendon's room at the end of visiting hours one Saturday night, he was stopped by Brendon's whispery voice.
“Ryan,” He whimpered, “Please. Get me out.” the tone of Brendon's voice, the weakness and fear therein, was enough to nearly bring Ryan to his knees. Brendon's big, sad eyes stared straight into his, and he suddenly had the urge to grab Brendon up in his arms and pull him out of the center, right past the psychiatrists and guards and everyone who was keeping Brendon locked up in that awful place. But Ryan knew he wouldn't. He couldn't. It wasn't going to happen that way. But he'd get Brendon out, he would, someday.
“I will, baby.” Ryan whispered, tears stinging his eyes as he closed the door, letting the last rays of sunlight into the hallway for a brief moment. “I will. Just wait.”