"As long as he’s in my arms, I can’t let anything or anyone hurt him." FRIKEY one-shot. Read, review, rate and feel my love. :P
I know that he thinks nobody’s watching, but we are. All of us are. Even Gerard is. We’re all watching, but I’m the only one who’s seeing. Seeing the falseness of his empty smiles; the damp patches on his pillow from where he cries himself to sleep at night; the way his face falters whenever he sees Gerard, his big brother, so off of his face that he can’t even stand upright without support; the way he’s pulled even more into himself since the start of the tour; how he’s fragmented and broken inside. We all watch him, like we watch each other, but I’m the only one who actually sees him like we all see Gerard’s antics. Maybe that’s why they don’t see Mikes; we’re all too busy seeing and worrying about his big brother.
But not me. Don’t get me wrong; Gee’s a great guy and I know that he'd never purposefully hurt anyone, much less his little brother, but Gerard’s killing his brother inside and he’s too drunk to even notice that anything’s wrong with the poor guy! Gerard once told us that he and Mikey had practically raised each other, so how is Mikes supposed to feel now that his protector, the guy who practically raised him, is in a downward spiral that can only lead him to one place; the morgue. Not that Mikey ever says that Gerard’s behaviour bothers him, he doesn’t even want anyone to see that it does; but I do. I see it as clearly as a blood stain on a white polo shirt. I see how much this hurts him and how much he doesn’t want to worry the others, that is why I’ve decided I have to help him, let him know that I see him, that I’m not blind to his problems. I have to do something; the guy’s my best friend for fuck’s sake! It hurts me to see him so distant and pained, but too quiet to say anything.
“Hey, Frank. Earth to Frank. Come in Frank, do you read me?” Ray’s friendly voice breaks into the thoughts I was drowning in and I blink a few times, needing a few seconds to reach the surface of reality. “You alright? You were kinda, I dunno, spaced out?” He asks with the kind of concern that is, in my honest opinion, better directed at the subject of my bottomlessly deep thoughts.
“I’m good, just thinking.” I offer him a slight smile to enforce my words, knowing that Ray is the sort of person to worry about a problem when he realises there is one; it’s just getting him to realise it that’s the hard part. He nods in understanding, giving me a friendly smirk of his own. “Do you know where Mikes is?”
“Backstage. That’s why I came to get you, we playing in ten minutes!” Ray laughs at seeing my confused face; was I really lost to my thoughts all afternoon? I look up at the red clock which adorns the far wall of the tour bus and grimace; apparently I had. I guess it just goes to prove how much Mikey’s behaviour really is worrying me, I can’t lose one of the nicest guys I know to himself just because he doesn’t want to worry anyone as we’re all already worried enough about his big brother; I refuse to let that happen to him. “C’mon, Frankie, we gotta go.”
I nod half-heartedly, already starting to be claimed back by my thoughts of Mikey, and follow Ray out of the bus.
The whole show I watch Mikey and see how he doesn’t take the joy he normally does in showing off his amazing bass skills to all of the kids in the audience; how he doesn’t even smile once, not even one of his fake ones; how the whole time he is either looking at the ground or gazing at his stumbling, yet somehow still managing to give one hell of a show, brother. I decided, whilst doing the final few chords of our closing song, that I couldn’t let this go on any longer. I’m getting to the bottom of this tonight, I’m tired of pretending to be blind to his pain!
That’s why, whilst the other three are hanging out back stage and drinking, I’m sprinting hurriedly to the tour bus, where Mikey always goes after a show. Not that he used to; he used to chill with us, have a few drinks himself, but now it’s like just seeing his brother self-destruct without realising what he’s doing agonizes the younger Way brother. I’ve never gone after him before and I’m not entirely sure what to do or expect; what if he’s crying, how do I blot out his tears with the happiness that he deserves? What if he’s fine, should I bring it up and address it with him anyway? What if he doesn’t want my help, should I force it upon him? What if he doesn’t want me to see, should I just be blind?
As I walk into the scruffy, teen-bedroom of a bus, the first thing that hits me is the fact that the bathroom door is locked. Oh well, looks like I’ve got a few more minutes to decide my plan; I must admit that, although I care about Mikes and want to help him with all of my heart, I’m not looking forward to dealing with an upset Mikey. It’s not that he’ll be an asshole or anything (not that I’d blame him if he was), it just… it sort of hurts me to see him upset, like I can only be happy if he is.
Once again, an unwelcome sound shatters my peaceful, yet somewhat painful, thoughts. Oh, God, it’s Mikes. He’s locked himself in the loo and he’s crying. What am I supposed to do? Listen in to see if I can learn anything? Try to comfort him through the locked door? Leave him to cry and act blind? Try to get him to come out of the toilet so that I can look after him?
I opt for the last option and walk tentatively towards the source of the heartbreakingly heartbroken sobs and reach out my fingerless-skeleton-glove covered hand to knock softly on the door. I knock out the typical comedy stile knock that cartoon characters always use in an attempt to lighten the mood and make Mikey feel more comfortable.
“Hey, Mikes. It’s Frankie, can I come in?” My voice shocks me with it’s hoarseness, apparently the situation has caused the lump that seeing Mikey upset usually causes to manifest to next stage of near-tears. I swallow it back, I can’t let Mikey think that he’s upsetting me; he’ll never talk to me then.
No answer other than the sudden silence of his cries. Fan-fucking-tastic! Nice one, Iero, you’ve gone and cost him the relent of not having to hold in his tears; well done on making a bad situation even worse! I sigh and strengthen my resolve to help him, I can’t not.
“Mikey, I know you’re in there. I’m not fucking stupid. I’m not blind either, I see how all of this is killing you inside and it’s starting to kill me too!” I yell in false anger, perhaps hoping that my change in tactic will get through to him better. “Please, buddy, please let me help you.” This time I do nothing when my tears fight to escape, a solitary one making it’s desolate and lonely journey down my distressed face. “Please.” It comes out as sincere sob that, although quiet, cannot be mistaken in it’s concern.
I suck in a breath of anticipation as I hear him click open the lock. I let out a sigh of sympathy when I see him. His face is all blotchy from his acidic tears and his, normally perfect, hair is in frenzied disarray. His eyes are the worst of all, though. I remember once being told that someone’s eyes are the window into their soul, into their inner-most thoughts and feelings; I never really believed that until seeing Mikey’s as they are now. The curtains are no longer pulled and I can see the trauma and hurt and anguish clearly for the first time, making me realise that I’ve nearly been as blind as the others; I knew he was suffering, but as badly as his eyes seem to indicate? Poor, poor guy. And he’s holding something behind his back, something he obviously wants me to be blind to.
“Mikes, what’re you hiding?” I ask, fearing the answer as much as I long for a positive one. He shuts his eyes and takes a shaky breath before holding his hand out to me. Holy fuck! It’s a motherfucking razor blade, the sort people use to hurt themselves. No, not Mikey! Not my Mikey, not my best friend! Why would he do that instead of talking to me? Am I really that bad of a friend? I snatch it from his hand, wincing as it’s sharp edge digs slightly into my thumb, and throw out of the open window. Without hesitation, I viciously yank his jacket sleeve down. I yank it down to something I think that I’d rather be blind to; an array of cuts all in varying depths and stages of healing (some still bleeding slightly, others nothing but faded lines, barely noticeable to those ignorant of his habit) adorned his shaking and pale arms. Oh no, anything but this; anyone but him.
“What were you thinking, Mikes? Why the fuck didn’t you come to any of us?!” I find myself feeling inexplicably furious. Wait. No, it isn’t inexplicable. I’m not really furious, just ridiculously worried because I care deeply about Mikey and I despise seeing him in any sort of pain. He bursts into fresh tears and falls forward into a hug I wasn’t even aware I was offering, but I’m extremely glad because as long as he’s in my arms, I can’t let anything or anyone hurt him. In my arms I couldn’t be blind, no matter how much my subconscious longed to be.
“I-I’m sorry, Frankie. Really I am.” I sigh at his helpless, hopeless, yet heartfelt, apology.
“Don’t be. I should’ve done something.” So I’ll do something now. Before I’m even aware of it, my lips press down on his own, which are painfully wet from his tears. I can feel him melt into it and in return my own heart melts. I feel him smile a little and immediately I know it isn’t a fake smile, so in return I break away to beam at him. “Don’t ever hurt yourself again, okay? Just come to me and I’ll help you.”
“I won’t hurt myself again. Ever. I just know it.” His cute little smile blinds me to all of the outside world, including what I’m sure to be a sloppy wolf-whistle from Gerard followed by something along the lines of “get in there” from him, most likely directed towards his brother. I see Mikey’s first real smile in a long while falter at seeing and hearing his older brother outside of the tour bus window, but the I grab his hands and our eyes fall into each other’s. “I won’t ever do it again. I’ll never feel like I need to, because now… Now I have you.”
A/N: Thanks for reading, please review!