"Well its alright baby, I'm nobody's mother. But don't want this last cigarette to be over."
TWO DAYS LATER
Two days had passed and Gerard and I still hadn’t spoken about what happened that night. I felt awful about it. I knew it wasn’t my fault, but I still felt so guilty it made me sick. Nobody could console me; not Milo, not my loving fans, not the roar of the crowd as the house lights turned on at the beginning of our set.
I felt lost. It was like that line from The Cure’s “Just Like Heaven”; “I found myself alone, alone, alone above a raging sea that stole the only girl I loved and drowned her deep inside of me”. Just replace girl with boy and that is exactly how I felt. I was sad and angry at the same time, spending the two days locked in the bus away from the world. It rained over the two days as well. Everything just felt so dreary without Gerard.
I was filled with questions and the wondering was aching me. What had happened? What went wrong? What did I do wrong? Was there any way for me to fix this? Who put those thoughts in Gerard’s head? I had my suspicions that it was Bert, but when I interrogated him he denied it completely. I was left without any answers and all I could do about it was stare out the window of the bus and watch the grey cloud shift in the wind. Ideas racked my brain, they flowed but didn’t stick. They would land and then run off like the rain on the windshield.
“Des, what are you doing?” Milo asked as I rummaged loudly through the cupboard. I grabbed the peanut butter and a banana before I answered him.
“Eating.” I said grumpily, flopping back onto the mini couch by the window. I struggled to open the peanut butter for a moment, but got it after a few seconds. Milo sat next to me and ignored my messy eating.
“You’re gonna get fat.” he warned meanly. I gaped at him with my mouth full of food open and he rolled his eyes in disgust. I slapped his arm. “You need to get over yourself, put the food away and go talk to him.” He said bluntly after a second of silence.
“But you said yourself that he was a big asshole. “ I whined, putting the food back on the counter and throwing my head back the same way a grumpy toddler would. Milo half frowned sympathetically.
“Yes, I did say that and he was being an asshole. But do you still love him?” Milo asked in a matter-of-fact tone. I looked from my mismatched socks back up to him and he raised his eyebrows knowingly.
“Yeah, I still love him.” I said reluctantly. Milo’s eyes said “I told you so” and I looked down again.
“Go talk to him.” he ordered, pulling me off the mini couch with him
“But I’m not dressed!” I protested, willing to make any stupid excuse. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to work things out, I was just embarrassed. And it wasn’t like Gerard was making any effort. There was a negative little voice in my head whispering “if he wanted to talk to you, he would; it’s over…”. Milo rolled his eyes and grabbed a shirt off my bunk.
“Take off the frumpy ass shirt. Brush your hair and teeth, put some shoes on too.” he commanded, shoving the hair brush and shirt into my arms. “And take an umbrella, its still raining pretty hard outside.” he added, throwing me the umbrella as I tried to brush my hair and teeth at the same time.
When I was deemed suitable by Milo, he shoved me out of the bus and told me I couldn’t come back until we made up. I gulped and hoped with every fiber of my being that we would make up. “He said he didn’t need you…” the little voice hissed. I shook my head and walked across the wet parking lot through the rain to the MCR tour bus. I got there and noticed a sign on the door that read “Gone partying, be back when we feel like it” written in Frank’s handwriting. I smiled to myself but then frowned, realizing that nobody was home.
But then I heard a terrible gagging sound and then something crash and clatter inside just as I was about to head back. I got worried and tried to peer inside but the window was fogged.
“Gerard! Hello? Anybody in there!” I called into the bus, wrapping on the cold glass with my knuckles. I didn’t want to just barge in, so I breathed heavily on the glass and watched the fog disappear a little as my breath warmed the glass. I could only see a little glimpse, but it was of an unmistakable black mop of hair on the floor of the bus.
My stomach dropped and my breath caught in my throat.
At once I tried to open the door, but was horrified to find it locked. I banged louder and called louder too, but there was no answer. I tried ramming the door with my shoulder but then remember a trick Leah had taught me. I whipped out my credit card and jimmied the lock with it. The door swung open and I rushed inside, leaving my umbrella behind to blow away in the wind.
Gerard was laying in the floor, hair in his face and in a puddle of his own sick. I bent down to help him and cringed. He was still breathing and had a pulse; a little relief found me. But he was still out cold.
“HELP! HELP!” I screamed out to anybody who may have been listening. Maybe Milo could hear or maybe the guys were coming back. Or maybe some good person walking down the street would help me. All were unlikely.
“HELLLP!” I screeched desperately, putting Gerard’s head so that it was resting in my lap. “Gerard, come on wake up. Wake up, wake up, wake up.” I urged, rubbing his cheek and bending over to kiss his forehead. He didn’t rouse or stir.
I saw his cell phone sitting on the counter. I grabbed for it and dialed Mikey’s number because it was on speed dial next to mine. He picked up after the third ring and I felt so relieved I wanted to cry.
“Mikey! Mikey, Gerard is sick. Real, real sick. I-I don’t know what he took but it was bad. He won’t wake up. You guys gotta come back. Hurry, please. I‘m scared. ” I shouted into the phone.
“Woah! Okay, we’ll be there in two minutes. Just keep an eye on him for us, kay?” Mikey said, not asking any question. Without any further pleasantries with hung up on each other and turned our full attention back to the matter at hand.
I kept trying to wake Gerard up. I kiss him, I screamed at him, I shook him, I splashed water on him. Nothing worked. He just laid there like a rag doll. His pulse was getting slower by the minute. My hands were shaking so bad it made me think of my late grandmother, who had had Parkinson’s.
I heard sirens outside suddenly and was reminded of the last time Gerard had gotten himself sick from drugs. “Is that for me?” his impish tone rang in my ears. I kissed his forehead again.
“Yes Gerard, this one’s for you.” I said sadly, squeezing a few tears from my eyes and onto his pale skin. Mikey, Frank, Ray and Bob all burst in along with two paramedics. I was surprised and amazed at their speed.
“How did you get here so fast?” I asked, stepping away from Gerard so that the medics could do their job.
“We met these guys at the bar.” Bob said. What a stroke of luck, finally.
“Is he gonna be okay?” I asked, leaning over one of the paramedics shoulders. They were checking his blood pressure and shining flash lights in his eyes.
“We’re gonna have to pump his stomach, but after that he should be fine. Looks like alcohol poisoning and he may have taken one too many Xanax. Not a good combo.” the medic said as they picked Gerard up and started leading him to the ambulance.
“Do you wanna ride in the back with him?” the other one asked, plugging an IV in him arm. I cringed for him and his fear of needles. I shook my head fervently. I couldn’t bare to look at him all fucked up. I couldn’t stand to look at him.
“No, no I can’t.” I stammered. The medics shrugged and packed him away, shutting the doors behind them. Then they drove off, leaving me shaking and empty feeling.
“What was that about?” Milo asked, coming up beside me. I opened my mouth to speak but instead of explaining all I could do was cry. Milo’s eyes widened and he looked around to see that Gerard was missing. He put two and two together and then wrapped me in a tight hug. Mikey and the rest of the guys came over too and Milo invited them to join in a weird sort of group hug which the all accepted.
“I think you should come with us and meet him at the hospital. He’ll freak out if he wakes up and you aren’t there, Des.” Mikey said as our hug broke apart. I wiped my eyes and sniffed.
“Why should I? Just the other night he told me that he didn’t need me.” I whined, finding black eye make up on my finger and wiping it on my pants. Frank sighed and stepped him, putting his hand on my shoulder.
“Listen, that wasn’t Gerard talking. That was like, his evil twin or something. That was the booze and the pills talking. Gerard is still crazy about you. He’s just paranoid and needs help. He’s struggling. And judging by what just happened, I’d say he needs you more than he knows.” Frank explained. I felt a little bit better.
“Okay, I’ll come. Lemme just go get my keys…” I said with an air of hopelessness.
THE HOSPITAL THAT NIGHT
After the doctors finished pumping his stomach, we all piled into Gerard’s room. The nurse had to get us extra chairs. But as the day wore on into night, everybody dwindled out of the room and to the waiting room and then from the waiting room back home. Soon the only people that were left were me, Mikey and Milo.
“Des, it’s nearly one. I’m gonna go back to the bus and hold down the fort. Call me when he wakes up or if you need anything, okay sweet cheeks?” Milo said, getting up from his seat next to me.
“Okay.” I said hoarsely. I cleared my throat and feigned a smile for his sake. He kissed my forehead before he left. I glanced over and saw that Mikey was still snoozing in his chair. Now everything was silent except for Mikey’s sort snores and Gerard’s heart monitor.
I got up and took the seat next to Gerard’s bed. He looked sick. He looked real sick, like he was dying or something. The doctors said he should be fine, that he’d be sick for a couple of days. They also said they gave him a light sedative and that he would wake up wither tonight or tomorrow morning. I was adamant about being there when he awoke.
Watching him sleep, never having seen him look so dead, was taking its toll. Sometimes I would look over at him and see my father or my sister laying there instead and have to do a double take. I was so tired I was delirious. But I knew I wouldn’t be able to sleep until Gerard woke up or at least gave some sign of life.
My father barely being able to sit up in the hospital bed. So weak and so tired after the news that my sister had “expired”. I stood with my mother by his right side. I clutched his blackened claw of a hand, both of us just waiting for something to happen. I started to cry.
“Don’t cry Roscoe.” he said to me in a raspy voice, the non-burnt half of his trying to smile. He had always called me Roscoe, though I couldn’t have told you why. It gave me an odd sense of satisfaction when he did. “Roscoe, don’t cry. We’ll have some high old times.”
He fell asleep. He stirred twice over the course of three hours. Once he stirred as I took my hand away to scratch my nose. An hour and a half later he stirred once more and died…
Soon another sound filled the room and it was me crying. I put my face in my hands and wept as softly as I could manage so that I didn’t wake Mikey.
“Roscoe, don’t cry. We’ll have some high old times.” I cried to myself under my breath. Gerard’s eyelids began to flutter suddenly and his hand reached out. I grasped it in mine at once.
“Hey, sh, hey.” I said softly, pushing my tears to the side. Gerard tired to sit up but then stopped and laid back down, his eyes scanning and searching the room until they reached my face.
“Wh-what’s all this?” he asked, his voice like a croak of a frog. His eyes were filled with fear and it broke my heart.
“Its okay, I’m here.” I cooed, petting his hair. He relaxed slightly. “Gerard, you over dosed and they had to pump your stomach. I came to talk to you about the other night and found you passed out.” I explained. Gerard was silent for a moment.
“Oh…Desolé, can you please forgive me? I didn’t know what I was saying. I-I just got so paranoid.” He said eventually.
“I forgive you, but please don’t ever walk away from me like that again. I need you more than I thought I did. And it seems like you need me, too. You can’t be paranoid Gerard. You know I’m crazy about you.” I said, still stroking his hair. His eyes looked their way up my arm until they met mine.
“I’m crazy about you, too.” he said kind of sadly. I leaned forward and planted a very soft, gently kiss on his lips.
“Gee, you gotta tell me what happened today and last night. What happened to you? What did you take?” I said finally, getting down to business. He looked away bitterly. “Please, just tell me what you took.” I said, feeling my tears sneaking back. I wanted to hold them in, but there was no way I’d be able to.
“I can’t. It’s really complicated.” he said through gritted teeth. I was about to plead with him again, but he held up his other hand. “Des, please. The important thing is that I’m alright now. Can we please just be together for a while?” he asked. I bit my lip, but then nodded.
“Alright. But I have to go call Milo and the guys and tell them you’re awake.” I said, giving him another kiss before I left the room.