Gerard has given up on his life, but he's not prepared to end it. He’s resorted to making his deadbeat life in run-down Belleville more interesting by peppering it with alcohol, smokes, anything ...
Chapter 1; Veni, Vidi, Fuck Shit Up
Trigger warning, depression and self harm thoughts, no graphic descriptions though.
Copyright blah blah blah this is all fictional in an alternative universe.
You might have concluded that waking up the morning of an eventful day would be a good place to start a story. I'm inclined to agree with you, but I'm afraid we can't do that. We can't start off in the morning and let the story roll by without you knowing just how crooked a boy young Gerard has become. Because trouble doesn't happen in one day.
Trouble doesn't just spring up and take over a shy teenager's instincts. You'll find that shy teenager is just introverted. Weak. Bullied. Pressured. Troubled. They don't simply wake up and decide they are about to wreak havoc. These things take time.
Like all good things.
It would be nice if Gerard could leave.
His dreams were to have dreams. Confusing, yeah. He had this shit figured way before DiCaprio coined it though started knocking people out and raping their brains though.
This was different to Inception, however. Gerard dreamed of breaking out of the cyclical lifestyle Bellevillians had settled into, leave this dead end, and find a life to live, because he sure as fuck wasn't living right now. He was alive, surviving. Gerard existed.
And that was his only achievement in life so far.
At seventeen, kids in the wider world had a vague idea of what they wanted to do. They had friends, dreams, they bothered their asses in school because they had something to work towards, people to work for and a life they wanted to earn.
At seventeen, kids in Belleville had dropped out of school and swept floors or cleaned toilets, working their way up the grimy ladder that meant they would someday get a managerial position. And boy was that a job to be dreamt of.
Perhaps once he finished school he could enrol in college or leave the town. Newark wasn't too far, and it was his best shot at achieving... well achieving anything. But that yearning still entwined in his heartstrings, and he wanted to go further, far away. San Francisco had a cool gay area, apparently. New York was the typical place to go. Chicago seemed like the most enticing for some reason.
These things just didn't happen in Belleville. Achievements, hopes, dreams, that crap. You could ask three Bellevillians what their life goals and you'd come out of it with three identical life stories. Leave high school. Become the manager of a convenience store or a coffee shop.
On the bright side, there were quite a few Walmarts in Belleville.
Another school year was looming across the threshold, counting on Gerard spending his days just opening his locker, going to class, closing his locker, going home. Repeat. Life was established, life was a routine, and he was used to it. He woke up as per usual, brushed his teeth as per usual, skipped breakfast as per usual, and downed his coffee with a shot of something special that just gave everything less of an edge.
At least his little vials of vindictive addiction reached in and tugged on his cheeks. That woozy smile passed over and shivers tickled down his spine, with a pinch at the base of the neck. This was great; every morning had a kick like this. Gerard had something to look forward to whenever he gingerly rolled out of bed. Small things like this peppered through his day. Truth be told, Gerard couldn't live without them. His shots in the morning, cigarette breaks at lunchtime, that time alone with himself and the razor blade in the evenings, hitting his head against the wall hoping it would knock him out before he went to sleep. All in good nature, he told himself. All for his own wellbeing.
Time had passed slowly over the summer. The only thing of remote interest was a new comic store opening in town. The thought fleeted that Gerard could apply for a job there once he finished school, to busy himself whilst he rotted away. Such a horrible image, but it played on his mind. The idea that no one would notice if he was gone, if he'd just decayed into a mess of life force. He was a sad excuse of a human being in his own opinion, yet he enjoyed coping with it. That sort of thing drew him in, hurting himself, healing himself, that spinning cycle. Gerard had a lust for his own blood of sorts.
As we were saying, summer. Not much had happened as the two months rolled by painstakingly slowly. Some new kids had moved into town, some lucky kids had moved out, some left in coffins too.
One girl had left them but yet she was still there, six feet under, with a stomach full of pills and that blissful look on her face until the maggots ate it away.
Sucks to be her.
Gerard had mulled it over for a while. The death, that was. It wasn't the first suicide in Belleville and it sure as fuck wasn't going to be the last one. But this girl was his age, only seventeen years old. And he just didn't get it. He'd toyed with the idea of just ending his life; he'd nicked the skin on his throat and wondered should he press further. Yet in the end, that ounce of hope outweighed the omen looming over his shoulder. He staved it off again, saving his own death for a less merciful day. Because in the end, that small feeling that things could get better always won him over.
Summer's lease hath all too long a date and Belleville High School's reopening couldn't come fast enough for Gerard. School was his only occupation, for the most part. That's not to say he had no friends, he just didn't see them much outside the classroom. There was Jimmy and Rob, they were friends, they liked the same music as him and they all sat together at lunch, which totally meant they were friends! Gerard wasn't a loner, he just wasn't known for his prolific social interaction. Even his little brother Mikey tended to stay away from him these past few years.
"See you later Mikes!" Gerard hollered through the doorframe, just about ready to click the door shut and make his way to school.
"Wait up cocksucker!" Mikey yelled, and before Gerard knew it, there was a foot jammed in the doorway and an extremely pissed off Mikey to answer to, glaring at him from the inside of the house.
As I was saying- they weren't on best terms.
"Open the door jackass, you're hurting my foot." he snarled, wrenching Gerard's hand off the handle and pushing his way out of the house. Gerard stood aside in awe, trying to figure out why Mikey's angst was spiking up this morning, and more importantly why this year he'd decided that walking seemed the best way to get to his school on the other side of town.
"Why aren't you getting a lift off mom...?" Gerard dared to ask, clicking the door shut behind him woozily and staring at Mikey as he stalked down the path to the corner of their street. The steps creaked softly underfoot as Gerard hesitantly dropped his grip from the door handle. He rarely saw Mikey this early in the morning and much less saw him this angry without a cause. These shambles of late dawn were making less and less sense as the year went by, perhaps Gerard had taken the shot that blew his head off.
"I start high school today you moron!" Mikey yelled again, shooting an angry look over his shoulder and not waiting up for Gerard - who consequently fumbled with the house keys and sprinted down the street in an effort to catch up with his little brother.
"Why are you being such a bitch?" Gerard wheezed, stumbling up to Mikey's side.
"Why do you think?" he huffed, tugging on his grey beanie and flicking his long brown fringe aside in the most irritating and an unbearably stuck up manner.
"I got nothing here Mikes-"
"Don't. Call me. Mikes." he hissed slowly, frustration snarling and seething from every syllable. Gerard was still at a loss. What had he done this time? By the norm standards, they didn't have the closest relationship, but it was still uncharacteristic of Mikey to lash out like this instead of just ignoring Gerard's very existence.
"I'm showing up for my first day of high school with my piss-annoying older brother who's a fucking social hermit, has no friends and will make me look like a tool in front of highly impressionable teenagers." Mikey sighed, shooting another glare at Gerard as they stalked down the street.
"Fair deuce, I'm a sociopath." Gerard shrugged.
"And you say annoying shit like that." Mikey added. "Now, everything will just work out better for us, if once we turn that corner, you go ahead, I stand back, and we pretend we don't even know each other, okay?"
Although he could perfectly understand why Mikey was annoyed today, Gerard still couldn't see why he had to be such a douchebag about it. They stalked down the street in silence, with Mikey's aura of I Hate My Life making an impenetrable shield of awkward. Gerard lit up a cigarette after a minute or so, and once they finally reached the end of the road, the Way brothers agreed Gerard would stay back to finish his smoke and Mikey would go ahead to meet up with his middle school friends. No one would even know they knew each other, much less they were brothers.
Mikey trotted up the steps to Belleville High School, met his friends, smiled, laughed, hung out by the main entrance and seemingly had a great time, and once again, Gerard was an antisocial loner, who couldn't even get his own brother to like him.
He smiled and plucked the cigarette from his lips, exhaling slowly in a long stream of smoke.
This was just how he liked it.
He liked being alone, ignored, he liked standing by himself. He liked the things they spat at him, the smoke in his lungs, the remaining traces of cheap vodka caressing the inside of his veins. He liked the nicks in his skin tickling down his arms.
He liked the harm in it all. There was something so pretty about it.
He didn't need anyone else when he had a romance between himself and self destruction.
The ash blew off the tip of his cigarette and brushed against his knuckle. He held the stick between his fingertips and stroked his lower lip with the filter absentmindedly, like some cancer flavoured lip balm. Maybe he could make this year different somehow. Maybe he could do something good, make a difference. Maybe he could quit smoking, quit drinking, start talking to people start a reputation. Maybe he could be remembered in the school.
Or, on the other hand, maybe he could start himself a bad history.
A smile crept up Gerard's cheeks. That sounded like a funny notion. The goody two shoes kids were always about making their lives better, making a difference. But maybe Gerard could have some fun and fuck shit up. Or make things worse for himself.
That sounded enticing.
He glanced around the corner, to see Mikey and his friends were still stalling around the student entrance. Laughing, nodding, smiling, all crowded around having an awesome in their awesome clique with their awesome friends. The cigarette tumbled from Gerard's hand to the ground, and he couldn't even bother stub it out. He started marching towards the school with a certain air of determination about him. Determined to do what? He wasn't even sure. But he was sure to get his shit together and do something, anything, to make the days go by faster. Time flies when you give yourself cancer.
It's not like it mattered anymore. There was no chance of him leaving Belleville after high school, might as well make a deadbeat life slightly more interesting.
He suspected it might've been his morning shot's last kick stemming the strangest ideas in his mind, but the malignant thoughts stuck to his brain like some pleasing tumour, resignated to ruining his life whilst simultaneously giving him a good time. Going out with a bang, you could call it. Thoughts drifted back to his earlier ponderings. Such a horrible image, the idea that no one would notice if he was gone, if he'd just decayed into a mess of life force. That was the last thing Gerard wanted. Sometimes he'd want to just give up, make it stop, let this breath be his final, but that wasn't to say he didn't want to be remembered. He'd come back and haunt this town if he needed, but Gerard Way was going to do something before he died, he was going to be remembered, he was going out with a crash, bang and explosion.
At least the thought didn't fall through like most of his rare points of optimism did. Gerard had barely crossed the school grounds' threshold and set foot on the grimy steps leading to the main building before a kid standing a few feet away from Mikey caught his attention. The boy was hanging around awkwardly by one set of the school gates, and Gerard couldn't tell if he was loosely attached to Mikey's group or if he was just simply alone. That in itself was weird, as most people - excluding Gerard , obviously - found comfort in numbers at school. He was an intriguing figure, to say the least. No special, aura, none of that butterflies and radiating magic shit, he just looked different. Half shaved hair, eyeliner, band t-shirt, ripped jeans - y'know that kind of kid. Goth, punk, emo, as you like it. He wasn't strikingly hot, he wasn't repulsively ugly, but when he's the only other kid in a ten mile radius with an interest in The Cure, you got curious.
Gerard was most certainly not the only misfit in the school, himself and the other oddballs found company in each other, but sometimes it just boiled down to the fact they had no one else to go to. Jimmy, Rob and himself were the regular trio found at Table 12 at lunchtime, sometimes joined by Ray, or Jennifer, and on even rarer occasions, Bob. But even at that, Gerard was the only one who truly stuck out of the crowd. In fact, he couldn't name another person who dressed as such apart from himself. And this kid, apparently.
He was new on the scene. Never seen before. Brand new, coming to a theatre near you, available in all good retailers. But he looked too old to be a freshman, so Gerard narrowed it down to a) he'd just moved to Belleville in the recession like a lot of newcomers or b) maybe he'd been in the school for years and he'd had some sort of spiritual awakening during the summer whereby he'd realized he would be a really good looking faggot. Gerard smirked at his own amazing humour. Hardy har har.
Who was this boy though? Gerard's thoughts zoomed back into focus. He did his best to soak in every detail of his image while he walked by him in the direction of the student entrance, whilst trying remaining inconspicuous - and as a result nearly walked into one of the midgets in Mikey's group of friends. He considered pissing off his little brother with an "Oh hey Mikeeey!", but decided against, freshman had been hard enough on him and he didn't have an annoying queer brother peering over his shoulder. What, you thought he was a douchebag? He hated himself, that's not to say he wanted to ruin Mikey's life too. If anything, Mikey deserved the best chance he could get.
Ignoring the affronted look that Mikey's friend gave him, he marched up the steps and paused at the building's doorway. He was really curious, and more so reckless. If he didn't find out who this stranger was now it would probably eat away at his head for the rest of the day. Chances were part luck, part stupidity, and Gerard was a stupid boy feeling lucky.
He mimed looking at his phone, trying to keep his glances in check so he wasn't too conspicuous. And right after he checked himself, he realized- fuck that. Gerard wanted to show interest, he wanted the guy to be aware of the piqued curiosity he'd caused. It only took one more casual look over before Gerard had decided 'to hell with it' and walked over to the boy.
Some small part of his mind was thinking that maybe he should stay away. This kid had good style but that didn't mean he would take too kindly to some ascetic, lanky eighteen year old waltzing up and asking how he was. He had a fauxhawk from chrissakes. Fauxhawks are not for the faint of heart.
Then again, that was the small part thinking. There also remained that overbearing percentage of his possible choices that seemed to have bought most of the stock in Gerard's brain, and was now urging him forward to retrace his steps back down to the gate, to say hello to this kid.
And finally, there was the sweet remains of that Irish taint to his morning coffee. Maybe alcohol wasn't a healthy choice for breakfast, but hey, nothing says let's start a new school year like a swig of knock-off whiskey from the downstairs pantry.
He found himself face to face with this kid. When did he get to the bottom of the steps? Oops. Perhaps he should pay attention to this kind of shit in the future.
"Hi." Gerard stated briskly, planting his feet on the ground and pushing a few strands of his greasy black hair out of the way. He looked like shit, as far as he was concerned. The new kid glanced him up and down and stared bemusedly, soaking in every detail of what was going on. It was such a simple action but he was fuck confused. There was a boy who looked a bit older than him and possibly had vampiric ancestry staring at him, his eyes widening over the his hollow cheeks, awaiting an answer. He looked freaky, to be honest. Greasy, pale, skeletal, and the long black bangs framing his face complemented the creepy ass knee-length jacket.
"Hey." the kid smiled warily. He looked more surprised than anything. In fairness to him, a Dracula lookalike had appeared out of the blue to say hello to him. Gerard gave him another look from head to toe. He had some badges on his bag strap. All good bands. The Smiths? Hm. Bit different to the rest. Still good music though, and always fallback for shitty conversation in case things turned sour.
Sure, here's a tip from Mr Gerard Way- if anyone's ever beating the shit through you for being an irrational faggot, ask them if they like brit-pop.
"I haven't seen you around." Gerard stated again, continuing the conversation with his brilliant social skills. "You new? What's your name?"
"Oh." the kid's face cleared a little, probably because he thought this dude was a little less likely to use him as a blood sacrifice or some shit now. Because he totally looked like that kind of guy.
"Yeah. I just moved from Newark, my name's Frank." He nodded.
"Nice meeting you Frank. My name's Gerard. Do you like The Cure?" Gerard questioned immediately, rattling questions off like the world's most apathetic game show presenter.
"Well, yeah." Newark replied with a gesture towards his shirt, still too confused to break a smile in this conversation.
"Good, I like them too. And I'm tired of all those jackasses wearing band tees without knowing the band." Gerard grinned, and Frank's lips finally twitched into a small curve. This guy wasn't so bad after all. Still freaky looking but a nice guy. Frank wasn't one to judge, he was usually interpreted as the aggro, kill-all-your-friends, punk kid.
Okay in fairness he did have a few 'anger issues', but that was why they'd moved to Belleville, so he could have a new start. A start where he wasn't known in the school for giving a kid a black eye because he said The Smiths were faggots.
(You don't diss The Smiths around Frank Iero.)
"So you like The Cure?" Frank shrugged, slowly trying to make headway in the conversation. He wasn't the shy type, and since someone else had approached him first he sure as fuck was not going to let them go this easily.
"I do indeed Newark, and all these other badges..." Gerard nodded, leaning in to stare at the buttons peppering over Frank's jacket. In response, Frank almost backed away, but decided to grit his teeth and clench his fists at this sudden intrusion of his personal bubble.
Out of the bubble. Frank muttered in his mind. Out. Gerald. Or Gerard. Whatever.
Out. Of. The. Bubble.
"Surprised to see The Smiths in between Skunk Anansie and Murderdolls though." He added, pulling away and standing once again in his strangely rigid posture that just enforced his skeletal image. "Still, I love all of them."
Frank found himself grinning absurdly.
"You love them all." he smiled breathily. "You like The Smiths."