Gerard has what you might call an "identity crises" when he looks in the mirror.
Pt. 1: The Mirror
His mouth smelled putrid. His teeth were gnarly, lacking of their usual spotless shine. His pillow smelled like vomit, despite the fact that none was actually present. Gerard moaned into it, awakening to another day of the hell he had been living in for the last three weeks.
Tossing around in his sheets, he wondered just how early or late it was. They had plans today, he knew, he just could not remember what. Figuring that he ought to find out, Gerard pushed himself off the hotel bed. Had he looked back on his way to the bathroom, he would have seen the long strands of red hair that he left in his wake.
Stumbling slightly, he found his way to the toilet. A mess of chunk and bile was residing in the toilet's water, as he neglected to flush it last night. A silly mistake, really -- if Mikey ever found out -- well, Gerard shuddered at the thought.
He brought himself to the mirror, and leaned against the sink's basin. Already weak before the day had even begun, Gerard gripped it to steady his balance. He contemplated his appearance in the reflection before him, and saw a beautiful image.
Gerard saw his complexion pale, his cheeks with a slight pinkish hue. His locks fell gracefully upon his face, its bright color contrasting strikingly with the rest of his features. Still, his cheeks still looked a little plump. It would be much nicer if his cheeks were a bit more sunken.
Yet what was looking back at him was an entirely different picture. One the other side of the mirror was a skeleton of a man. His skin was visibly dry, and his lips were chapped. He had no evidence of life upon his appearance, and seemed to be nothing more than a walking corpse.
The two Gerard's, on either side of the mirror, remained blind to one another. The beautiful Gerard could not see the dying Gerard, and the dying Gerard could certainly not see anything beautiful -- even if it was right in front of him.
For good measure, Gerard vomited again into the toilet beside him. The concoction met with last night's former creation, and the mixture sloshed around in the bowl before Gerard hit the handle, sending it all out of sight. He clasped his cheeks, as though checking to see if that action had automatically reduced the fat in them. His hands met nothing but bone, yet somehow he still felt padding there.
He was tempted to empty himself further, but was interrupted by the sound of his phone going off. Gerard dragged himself back into the room and found the noisy device after a bit of searching. He saw that it was Frank who beckoned him. He felt in no mood to actually answer the call, but he knew this meant that it must be time to leave.
Gerard gathered whatever clothes he could find and clothed himself, not noticing just how much his jeans slid down his waist. He sat down on the bed for a moment, feeling fatigued from such a heavy activity as changing into clothes.
As he did, he found himself plopped down next to a small card with a phone number on it. That phone number belonged to a photographer they had met with just recently, a meeting that took more of a toll on Gerard than anyone realized.
It had been early in the morning. They arrived for the meeting and everything had started off well enough. They went into make up and wardrobe. They tested a few different backgrounds. After choosing a good one, they took a few test shots.
When everything was set, they took the first round of shots. There were a few breaks between the shots, and it was during the third break that Gerard happened to overhear an exchange between Frank and one of the editors.
Frank had been watching them photoshop the images. Understandable, of course --- almost every magazine photoshoot required the photos to be touched up. However, the editors seemed to feel like more than just a touch up was required for this shoot.
"What are you doing?" Gerard heard Frank say through the door to the coffee room.
"We're just slimming down his waist a bit, you know. Your singers a bit on the thick side there." the editor had said, laughing.
It was quiet for some time after that, until he finally then heard Frank respond. "He isn't. He just has sort of a muffin top, that's all."
Then came a snicker, quite clearly from Ray. "Yeah it's nothing compared to how he used to be. We used to call him Uncle Jiggy."
"Uncle Jiggy huh? Ha, that's a good one." remarked an editor. "Well he's still got some jiggle, but nothing we can't fix -- there we go."
The subject of Gerard had ceased at that point, and nothing else was said from then on. Yet, as light hearted as the conversation had been, Gerard felt humiliated in the days to come.
While he knew Frank and Ray loved him, that fact was suddenly overpowered by the insecurities he still felt from his days an obese child.
He suddenly felt as though he had been described by those he trusted, thick and jiggly. It was because he trusted them that caused him to believe them even more. Worse still was the revelation of the origin for the band's nickname for him. It had never occurred to him that they were laughing at him instead of with him.
Gerard did not confront Ray or Frank about it. He did not tell a soul about it, and forced a smile after the shoot, thanking the magazine for the opportunity to appear in it. Instead of working it out like he knew he should have, Gerard went home that night and emptied the contents of his stomach into the toilet.
He had not intended for it to be a habit, or even an occasional thing. It was just once, just to help him feel better. And that was that.
Yet old habits die hard, and Gerard had ressurected one that had always particularly difficult to destroy.
And it was a matter of days before it began to destroy him.
It started with visiting the toilet once a day. Then it was one in the morning, and one at night. Gerard also began to obsessively check food for fat content, looking at calories and transfats like never before.
Everything was nauseating. He would force himself to eat now and then, contemplating the fat he was swallowing with every bite. Yet he only did it to avoid suspicion, and he was almost alarmed to see how well he was hiding it.
Or did they just not care?
It didn't matter. If anything, it was a good thing. One day, he figured, the world would look at him with surprise.
"When did Gerard get so skinny?" they would ask themselves, staring at him in awe and amazement. No photographer would ever have to slim him down, because there would be nothing to erase.
There would be nothing there.
And no one would dare ridicule him ever again.
As Gerard thought of it, his resolve hardened. True, he felt ill. However, he figured he could always just eat a bit more if it ever went too far. In Gerard's opinion however, he was still a while away from it.
Gerard pushed himself from the bed and began to make his way to the hotel room door. He could hear his phone ringing again, and saw it was Mikey this time. They were getting impatient.
He passed by another mirror as he went, and again the two Gerard's met each others gaze.
Yet for that moment, for one small second, the beautiful Gerard caught the slightest glimpse of the dying Gerard on the other side. It stared back at him, with sunken eyes that begged him to stop this at once. Something alike to fear flashed inside him, and Gerard grabbed the mirror, hurling it on the ground.
It hit the floor and smashed to pieces. Gerard felt a strange satisfaction, and beautiful Gerard stared at the mess. The mirror lay face down on the floor, assuring him that be would not see that other Gerard through it again.
Still, as beautiful Gerard walked passed it's fragments, he could have still seen dying Gerard there; the real Gerard, who was as broken as the little glass shards that lay shattered on the ground.