Apparently the vision-memory projection takes its toll on the propeller, although Gerard had not been able to tell immediately with the way that Frank had attacked lips first immediately following. Still, the boy-angel spends the next week mostly laid in Gerard’s bed, pale, weak and sickly looking, leaving the older boy restless and without sleep in worry.
It’s a challenging week for both men; Gerard has never been very proficient at taking care of himself, let alone another person, but there’s an undeniable pull towards protecting the smaller boy, wrapped up in every blanket Gerard can find and trembling beneath his fever. Frank barely has enough energy to open his eyes most days, wavering between consciousness and expelling stomach contents that aren’t replenished.
Gerard’s contemplating, not for the first time in the past six days, whether he shouldn’t just take the fallen angel to the hospital and contend with the whimpers and scowls and pouting lips he receives everytime the subject is approached; Frank is leaning over the side of the bed, dry heaving into a pot Gerard had brought in once the boy was too weak to make it to the bathroom. Rubbing circles on Frank’s back Gerard can feel the knots of his spine, could count each vertebrae as the boy shakes beneath the force of another cough.
Sudden realization strikes Gerard like a punch to the gut and he’s grabbing Frank’s shoulders, pulling the smaller boy towards him, fingers prying into the sunken skin of his cheeks, eyes peering through the haziness clouding the dulling green.
“Frank! Fuck! Are you dying?!” The indefinite shake of the small dark head and slight smirk might have gone unnoticed had Gerard not been staring so intensely; the sigh of relief that expels itself from between Gerard’s lips elicits a small giggle from Frank before yet another coughing fit and Gerard is smoothing and soothing and cooing once again.
Even after Frank is settled back into the bed, blankets wrapped securely around his shoulders and eyes closed, Gerard’s fingers are skating across his forehead, his cheeks, his neck and then back again, always touching and tracing and memorizing; anything to make contact with the angel’s skin that seems to, even in his weakened state, emanate some radiance that Gerard himself apparently doesn’t have. Of course, it doesn’t appear that anyone else does either. It’s a quality reserved for angels, even fallen ones ostensibly.
Gerard’s developed a real quandary where Frank’s skin is concerned since their basement adventure; he can’t seem to stop touching it.
Despite the fact that both of them have just returned from a haircut and a late lunch and that Mikey is due to arrive in less than 10 minutes, Gerard’s fingers are lazily dragging across the satin expanses, the angel’s eyes having fluttered shut minutes ago as Gerard traced over the tattoos painted across his skin.
Gerard knows he needs to change out of his t-shirt and jeans combination, knows that he needs to prepare for his interview, perhaps put some last minute touches on his portfolio; the lure of Frank’s skin beneath his own callused fingers keeps him locked to the couch and wrapped around the smaller boy.
The knock on the door snaps both from the reverie, Frank jumping from Gerard’s embrace to run to the door, looking through the small peep hole before ripping open the door, little face wide in his excitement, eyes and skin and teeth bright even in the semi-darkness of the apartment.
“Hey Frankie!” Laughing awkwardly, Mikey wraps his arms around the shoulders of the fallen angel who’s launched his small body at the lithe form of the visitor. “Gerard.” The offered nod is accompanied by a raise the younger brothers eyebrows at the state of Gerard’s clearly unprepared state, still lounging, although now uncomfortably, on the couch, having been abandoned.
Scowling, Mikey untangled himself from Frank’s limbs, making his way towards his brother before placing himself with more grace than Gerard has ever managed, into the seat across.
“What time’s your interview?” There’s no preamble, no warm greetings from the younger Way as he folds his long arms across his chest.
Gerard knows he’s in trouble, knows that even as the younger sibling Mikey has always been the more responsible, the one taking care of him and he can’t help the slight blush that covers his cheeks, the way the guilt makes him want to melt into the couch to escape the glare of disapproval that Mikey’s shooting his way.
“Let’s go.” Once again there’s no need for anything more than Mikey’s directions as both Gerard and Frank follow the taller man into the shared room, even Frank’s exultant mood dimmed beneath Mikey’s obvious displeasure, following the siblings silently.
It takes only twenty minutes for Gerard to be showered and dressed, his clothes having been laid out by Mikey, Frank helping pick out his shirt and shoes under Mikey’s guidance as the Gerard washed quickly beneath a spray that barely warmed his pale skin and then Mikey is pulling a twittering angel-boy out of the room by his arm, insisting that Gerard needs to get dressed and is perfectly capable of doing so by himself; Gerard can’t help feeling like a teenager once again.
And then he’s standing in the hallway, twirling slightly before his brother and angel, sweat already building beneath the sleeves and collar of his black dress shirt, nerves and anticipation too high in his throat and Mikey is pushing at his shoulder, urging him towards the door as he struggles with his coat.
“Gee, it’s fine! God, Frank and I are just gonna sit here and watch the Halloween marathon, ok?”
“I know Mikey, I just –” He knows he’s being a bit ridiculous, it’s only a few short hours that he’s going to be in the City and his little brother is more than capable of staying with Frank during that time – Mikey’s probably going to be better at it than Gerard is, but he can’t help the feeling in the pit of his stomach, the ache in his chest at the thought.
“No excuses. Get the hell out.” Gerard can’t help the backwards glance into the living room where Frank is standing just inside the doorway, eyes wide within his still pale face. Gerard swallows hard against what he imagines might be causing that look, taking a deep breath before smiling up at the two most important people in his life.
“Ok. I’ll be back soon.” His fingers are grasping the handle of his bag, hoisting it onto his arm before pulling open the door, Mikey’s fingers against the shoulder of his coat. “Please watch him, okay? He’s still not feeling great…” He appreciates the smile that his brother offers him and the squeeze of reassurance and he tries not to make eye contact with Frank as he shouts a final farewell before Mikey’s finally managed to drive him out the door.
Thoughts? Sorry it's so short!! I'm terrible!!