FRERARD SMUT! It's summer. Frank usually spends the hot, hazy days with his recently elusive best friend, Gerard. But after one sweltering August day, things will never be the same again...
EDITED SINCE YESTERDAY! I’ve edited this quite a bit since I posted yesterday, I think it’s a bit better now, especially the end. I have no idea why Ficwad suddenly cut it off- sorry! So if you’ve read before, feel free to read the improved version- I’d really appreciate it (: right…enjoy!
Where the Swallows Dance
It was summer.
The cloudless sky stretched endlessly overhead, a perfect clear blue canvas for the graceful, red-tipped swallows to dance across, under the sweltering rays of sun beating down on the parched school field. Little blades of lustrous, green grass swayed shyly in the balmy breeze that swept across the school grounds and ruffled the white heads of the daisies embroidering the field, making the perfect August afternoon.
Sixteen year old Frank Iero was laying on his stomach on the lush blades of green grass, gazing dreamily out across the parched field, his chestnut brown hair swept gently across his face by the tickling breeze of pollen and heat. Opposite him, also laying on his stomach, was another boy of the same age, only instead of gazing out philosophically at the hazy heat of the field, he was hunched up over a small, battered black sketchbook, his raven black hair flopping over his face as he earnestly sketched away with a 3B pencil, smudging here and there without looking up.
Silence wove a thin web over the two boys, but it was not an awkward silence, merely peaceful; only the distant burble of their peer group lazing in the swelteringly hot, parched concrete of the schoolyard metres behind them and the soft whispering rustle of the soft breeze brushing through the grass and the wildflowers broke the peaceful quiet. It was pure contentment; each boy was lost in his own little world, one in charcoal imagination, the other in dreamy curiosity and wonderings.
“Where do you think the swallows go?” Frank asked suddenly, leaning his head on his hands and gazing up at the birds dancing elegantly across the azure sky overhead. He then turned to look at his best friend, the slim, pale boy sketching away so earnestly under a shrouding of slightly chaotically raven hair.
The boy, Gerard, looked up at his best friend with almond-shaped, empathetically emerald and hazel tinted eyes that shone in the blistering sunlight and brushed his silky midnight hair from his face with charcoal stained fingers. “Africa,” he replied simply before returning to his sketch, impatiently brushing his hair from his eyes.
“How do you know?” Frank asked, flopping over to lie on his back so as he could continue looking back up at the vast freedom of the blue stretching over their heads, the breeze brushing his face like a gentle whisper.
“Mikey told me,” Gerard replied simply, without looking up, continuing to smudge and perfect his sketch with long, pale, skilled fingers. “He’s studying them in biology next semester.”
Frank sighed and tilted his head back further to take in the wondrous freedom of blue above him hair flopping back and mingling in soft chestnut tendrils with the little blades of summer grass.
He had always liked to ask questions, always been curious, ever since his first day of nursery where he asked the teacher why he existed. Needless to say, he was still searching for the answer to that particular question.
Almost everything fascinated Frank; from the way clouds formed in the sky to why he breathed in the humid summer air, but his favourite questions to ask were those that could not be answered.
A comfortable silence fell between them once more, Gerard continuing to sketch, Frank continuing to dream. It was how they’d always been, ever since they’d fought over the little finger paints in first grade. Later on, Frank decided that art wasn’t for him, and had picked up a guitar instead. But Gerard had known what he wanted right from the start, and stuck with the paints and the brushes through the years. He was now the best artist Frank knew.
Gerard had stuck with Frank too; They’d made mud pies and wobbly crayon drawings together, played at being superheroes or goblins, patched each other’s grazed knees up and shared lemonade in the summer holidays, scared themselves to death watching Dawn of The Dead on Gerard’s tenth birthday, braved their first day at high school, done each other’s homework, and shared CDs and secrets ever since. They were completely inseparable.
Only lately, it had changed a little. It was nearly the summer holidays once more, but they weren’t buying a glass bottle of lemonade from the corner shop to share in the park, or sunbathing in the shade because Gerard hated the sun. Maybe they were just too old for that, but Frank knew, deep down, that wasn’t the real reason.
Because, of late, Frank had gotten the feeling that Gerard was starting to drift, and that was something that scared him to his very bones. He didn’t know what he’d do without his shy, earnest, talented best friend. Frank was rarely scared of things- he was too busy being curious- but he was terrified of losing Gerard.
He hadn’t asked Gerard about it, though, which was very unusual for Frank; he wasn’t one to hold back on what he was thinking. He always voiced his thoughts and feelings and was sometimes a little too honest. But for some reason he wasn’t sure, he’d kept silent on this subject.
“I like the butterfly,” Frank said softly, referring to the black, spiky-winged butterfly Gerard’s fingers and 3B pencil were creating on the once blank page reflecting the blistering sunlight. It was hard to see it properly, from the way Gerard was bent over the paper, ebony hair tickling the page and shrouding his drawing partially from view.
“Thanks,” Gerard looked up fleetingly and threw Frank a small smile before tucking his ebony hair behind his ear returning to his drawing in silence.
Frank sighed, looking across at his best friend and getting a pang of sadness in his chest. He really fucking loved Gerard, and he’d be completely lost without him; there’d be no one to sigh at his curiousness, to try and answer his endless questions, no one to understand.
Love. There was something that had perplexed Frank for years and years. In his mind, it was almost as complex and unanswerable a question as why life existed.
When he was little, he thought being married like his parents had meant love, but then his parents had split up. Then he thought love had been how he felt about his best friend, he thought it meant having someone who understood you. Then they’d gone to high school, and Frank had realised that you had to love a girl. After that, Frank had kinda ignored the whole ‘Love’ question, but now…now it was resurfacing. He had a girlfriend. She was called Cindy, and she was one of the prettiest, smartest girls in Frank’s year. Sure, Frank got on well with her and thought she was real sweet, but...was it really love? Frank didn’t know. And Frank really wanted to know.
“Hey, Gerard, what’s love?” Frank asked suddenly, cutting to the quick bluntly as usual as he turned his head to look at his best friend.
Gerard took a moment to look up. Frank would normally have just presumed he was finishing a particular part of his drawing, but Gerard wasn’t drawing because Frank could see his blunt 3B pencil frozen just over his paper.
However, after a couple of seconds, Gerard looked up, eyes bright green behind his strands of ebony hair that flopped carelessly round his intelligent, empathetic face.
“Love?” Gerard repeated, brow furrowed as he looked at Frank.
Frank nodded, plucking a little blade of grass from beside his elbow. “Yeah, love...do you know what love is?”
Gerard went quiet for a moment, just plucking the petals from a daisy in front of him, pencil rolling slowly across his sketch-pad. Then he sighed, tossing the daisy head aside. “Do you, Frankie?”
Frank considered, frowning. “There’s loads of kinds of love I feel, but y’know, being in love…”
“What about Cindy?” Gerard asked quietly. “Do you love Cindy?”
“I dunno…” Frank sighed, flicking the little plucked petals from Gerard’s daisy across the wavering grass. “I guess I could. Yeah,” he shrugged and looked back up at the turquoise summer sky. He knew he and Cindy were the perfect match; they both loved music, she was intelligent and didn’t mind all Frank’s questions and they could talk for hours. But was that love?
Gerard’s eyes clouded with something Frank couldn’t decipher from the raven strands hiding his irises. He didn’t think much of it, though. Gerard was simply mysterious, and even Frank didn’t always know what he was thinking. Although, as he thought fleetingly about it, he was sure Gerard had become much more unreadable in later months, like there was something he didn’t want Frank to see. But Frank couldn’t see what on earth Gerard would want to hide from his best friend.
Frank was a very honest person; sometimes painfully honest. He never felt the need to hide anything, and he didn’t understand how other people could keep so much angst locked away in silence.
“Do you think you know if you’re in love?” Frank asked, plucking another blade of grass.
“Yes,” Gerard said simply and honestly.
Frank frowned, and continued to pluck grass and contemplate his emotions.
“Sure?” he asked. “I mean, it must be different for everyone, right?”
“I guess. But I’m pretty sure you’d know,” Gerard mumbled, his cheeks turning a delicate pink behind his hair as he ducked back over his drawing.
Frank didn’t know what to say to this, so instead, he changed the topic. “You don’t like Cindy, do you, Gee?”
Gerard hesitated, looking in contemplation at the grass.
Frank knew Gerard well enough by this stage to know the meaning of his silences. “Why not?” Frank asked, slightly irritated. “What’s wrong with her?”
Cindy pretty, with wavy brown hair and cinnamon coloured eyes and freckles and she was in Frank and Gerard’s French class. She’d asked Frank to the movies couple months back, and before he’d even had time to consider it, he’d found himself agreeing. But he really liked Cindy. She was real sweet.
Except it meant he saw less of Gerard. Or rather, Gerard saw less of him. Gerard had skipped hanging out with Frank the last couple of weekends, and he sometimes just holed up in the stuffy library alone if Frank didn’t come and find him and drag him out to the peace of the deserted sports field as he had done today.
In fact, today must have been the first time in about a week he’d hung out properly with Gerard. And that really did scare Frank, because he knew, deep down, that something had rocked the foundations of their friendship, and for some reason, Gerard was slipping away from him. Frank couldn’t bear the thought of that. Being without Gerard would be like walking without a shadow.
“Nothing. She’s great, Frankie,” Gerard muttered, concentrating on his sketch.
He never answered Frank like he was telling the truth anymore. He never laughed and joked and poked Frank in the ribs to get him to laugh along with him. Not that he needed to- Gerard had one of those laughs that were completely infectious, and whether you wanted to or not, you’d end up laughing along with him.
But it had been a long time since Frank remembered Gerard laughing like that, now he thought about it. Instead, Gerard, he was sure, had been looking progressively paler with deeper circles of sleep-deprivation under his eyes.
“Gee?” Frank murmured suddenly, turning his head to the side so as he could look seriously at his best friend who was still hunched over his drawing.
“Mmm?” Gerard replied vaguely.
“Are you happy?”
Gerard sighed heavily and looked away from his sketch-pad to his best friend’s olive and russet swirled eyes, full of so many unanswered questions.
“Jeez, Frankie, what’s with all the deep questions?” Gerard laughed, brushing his hair out of his eyes and smiling at Frank as if to reassure him, but strangely, this only unsettled Frank more, because Gerard’s smile was empty.
“Hang out with me after school,” Frank blurted suddenly, but before he had even finished his sentence, he could see the refusal in Gerard’s emerald eyes.
“I dunno, Frankie…” Gerard sighed, smudging the left wing of his butterfly.
“Why not?” Frank demanded, rolling back over onto his stomach so as he could look at Gerard properly. “You haven’t been over to mine in fucking ages.”
“Well, what about Cindy?” Gerard mumbled, smudging a little too hard.
“What about her?” Frank asked, frowning.
“Don’t you want to spend time with her?” Gerard muttered.
“I want to spend time with you,” Frank sighed, starting to pluck at the grass before him again as he looked out across the hazy heat of the sun-soaked field.
Gerard looked up, hair blown gently across his round face from the soft, balmy breeze that ruffled the petals of the daisies embroidering the grass that stretched out endlessly towards the hazy horizon.
“Why?” he mumbled.
“Because you’re my best friend and I never see you these days!” Frank said incredulously. “Please, Gee?” he added more softly. “I miss you. It’s not the same anymore.”
“No,” Gerard murmured, more to himself than Frank, staring sadly across at the sweltering schoolyard behind them, where the majority of their year was lounged lazily on the peeling picnic benches. “It’s not the same.”
Something horrible and sharp gouged through Frank, and he didn’t know how to respond to his friend’s enigmatic response. They spent the rest of the lunch hour in silence, Gerard bent earnestly over his drawing, the hot sun beating down on his raven hair, Frank laying on his back, gazing up at the endless blue above him with a horrible coldness inside of him the warmth of the sun’s gold couldn’t melt.
Even though Frank was almost certain Gerard wouldn’t show, he still lingered outside the gates for at least fifteen minutes after the final bell rang, sweating slightly in the blistering sunlight, sleeves of his school shirt rolled up as far as they would go as he panted into the humid afternoon air, staring in false hope at the school’s main doors and where the sun beat down on the deserted, dry schoolyard.
Frank loved the sun, but he’d never liked the horrible stickiness the summer air sometimes came with; it felt as if it clogged up his whole mind and stopped him thinking straight, and the way it made sweat prickle up his spine irritated him.
Eventually, he had to admit defeat, and sighed heavily into the thickly golden air before hoisting his schoolbag onto his aching shoulder and trailing off down the endless, parched street, heart heavy.
As he walked, he gazed up at the still cloudlessly blue sky, remembering the way he and Gerard had spent hours laying on the cool grass of the local park during last year’s holidays, staring up at the blue sky embroidered with pure white, fluffy clouds and trying to imagine what shapes they could be. There were no clouds as Frank trailed down the sweltering street, though, just the swallows that dipped and dived across the blue like dolphins of the sky.
Frank wondered if they really did go to Africa, if they really flew those thousands of miles together over oceans and cities and beaches just to go home. It was one of those things in the world that amazed him; the stamina of the tiny little birds that danced through the air.
He wondered if Gerard was watching the swallows, wherever he was.
Knowing Gerard, he was more likely to be drawing them, long, pale fingers gripping his pencil tightly, hair flopping untidily across his eyes so as every so often he’d have to tuck it earnestly behind his ear before continuing.
Frank came to a sudden halt halfway down the sweltering street, suddenly knowing where Gerard would be. Rolling his sleeves further up his arms and pushing his floppy hair out of his face, Frank doubled back to the back to the back entrance of the school that was almost completely hidden with wildflowers and tall grasses.
Not wanting to traipse all the way back into the school sports field in the overwhelming heat, Frank scrabbled for a second in his pocket and then drew out his mobile, quickly punching in Gerard’s mobile number with sweat salted fingertips. He knew it off by heart, despite the fact Gerard was always losing his phone and getting new ones.
It took nearly eight rings for Gerard to pick up on the other end.
“Hello?” his voice sounded slightly muffled.
“Gee, it’s me,” Frank said into the receiver, slumping down against the wall behind him and sighing into the humid air.
“Oh. Um, hey.”
“You were meant to meet me,” Frank accused.
“…I was?” Gerard sounded confused.
“Yeah, I mentioned it at lunch hour, remember?”
“Where are you?”
“In the field,” Gerard replied, proving Frank’s suspicion right. Having been best friends for years, Frank knew that if Gerard wasn’t with him, he was either at home, in the library, or in the school field, drawing. For someone who hated school, it was sort of strange that Gerard spent time there after school in the hotter weather, but when Frank had once asked, Gerard had said that it was ‘Peaceful being alone in a place everyone hates you’.
“Okay, I’m on my way,” Frank announced, and hung up before Gerard had the chance to object. Half a year back, Gerard would never have turned down hanging out with Frank- they were inseparable. But in recent months, Frank had been finding it increasingly difficult to see his newly elusive best friend, and it killed him a little inside when he remembered how close they used to be.
Frank was as determined as he was curious, though, and he was not going to let Gerard go without a good reason.
After pocketing his phone, he had to push all the overgrown plants out of the way to get through the forgotten entrance, dislodging flies and butterflies similar to those Gerard had been so carefully drawing at lunchtime, only these were brightly colored and stood out like flowers as they fluttered up into the blue. Fleetingly, Frank wondered if they flew with the swallows.
After a couple of minutes of panting and pushing, Frank stumbled through the entrance and found himself at the bottom of the sports field, sweating profusely, shielding his eyes from the blistering sun with his hand and quickly scanned the overgrown, deserted field.
His heart leapt as he spotted a lone figure lying on the grass halfway across, under the dappled light of the lush leafed oak tree, ebony hair falling across their face and shining almost blue in the bright sunshine, like a raven’s feathers.
Frank started making his way across the summer field, walking slowly in the thick heat with aching feet and a shirt sticking to his back with sweat, the butterflies swooping around him, until he finally reached the dappled shade of the oak tree and flopped down gratefully in its comparative coolness, panting into the heady, pollen filled August air.
Gerard looked up and smiled gently at Frank, putting his pencil down and tucking his ebony hair behind his ear. “Hey Frankie,” he said softly.
“You’re a dick,” Frank groaned, fanning his face with his hand. “I waited fucking ages for you after school. Do you have any idea how hot it is?!”
“Why do you think I’m in the shade?” Gerard smiled slightly uncertainly, but this time it reached his emerald, almond-shaped eyes truthfully, and suddenly he was just Gerard again, Frank’s other half, Frank’s talented, sensitive, raven-haired best friend, not something of a ghost slowly but surely drifting away.
“You always were a vampire,” Frank shook his head fondly at Gerard, poking him with his foot and making Gerard smile more widely and duck his head a little, biting his lip.
“You were always a dreamer,” Gerard replied softly, looking down at Frank with reminiscent fondness in his intelligent hazel swirled eyes.
“Even in like, first grade, you’d always play in the shade,” Frank remembered, sighing nostalgically as he plucked a daisy from the lush grass tickling his cheek. “And try and suck my blood.”
“You’d never pay attention in class cause you were too busy daydreaming,” Gerard recounted, grinning down at where Frank was laying now. “You always ended up copying my work.”
“Oh yeah,” Frank grinned too, flicking the daisy at Gerard. “Do you remember that time we both got yelled at by Mrs. Jenkins for trying to exercise our ‘vampire powers’ on that horrible guy with the shaved head and the extra toe?”
“Yeah,” Gerard smiled fondly, shaking his head at the memory, poking Frank’s nose gently. “The one that used to lick the glue and snort the sand in the play sandpit, right?”
“Yup,” Frank giggled, reaching up and poking Gerard back. “Good times.”
“Good times,” Gerard echoed, breaking his gaze with Frank and gazing up at the sky where swallows were still swooping and diving across the blue, black with white bellies and red-tinted tails.
A silence fell between them, peaceful and reminiscent, broken softly by the buzz of insects on the wildflowers and the hush of the humid air whispering through the strands of summer grass and the lustrous leafy green of the oak tree’s canopy.
“God, I’d kill for one of those lemonades we used to buy,” Frank sighed, stroking the tendrils of cool, juicy grass between his fingers. “Remember them, Gee?”
Frank sighed dreamily again, gazing out into the heat haze that shimmered at the bottom of the field as he remembered the way the sweet and sour liquid would trickle down his parched throat like an icy stream, quenching his deprived throat.
“Hold on a sec,” Gerard mumbled, fumbling in his schoolbag for a second and then drawing out a familiar glass bottle of old-fashioned cloudy lemonade. He held it up. “Want some?” he smiled.
“You’ve got some!” Frank beamed, sitting up and enthusiastically taking the bottle from Gerard’s long fingered grasp. As their fingers brushed lightly, Frank’s hand tingled in a weird kind of way, but he guessed it was just the heat.
“Yeah,” Gerard ducked his head slightly, smiling at Frank through tendrils of his midnight hair, eyes shimmering in the blistering afternoon sunlight that was only somewhat diminished by the leafy canopy swaying gently over their heads.
Frank eagerly unscrewed the cap and raised the cool bottle to his lips, taking a long gulp of the sweet, refreshing liquid that was dusty with memories.
“Thanks, Gee,” he smiled, handing the bottle back and wiping his lips with the back of his hand as he felt the lemonade trickle icily down his thirsty throat, exactly as he remembered.
“You’re welcome,” Gerard replied softly, before taking a swig himself and then setting down the bottle on the grass. “Do you mind if I carry on with my drawing? We can still talk.”
“Sure,” Frank replied lazily, stretching out on the grass and shuffling over so as he could rest his head on Gerard’s lap. It was interesting seeing Gerard from that angle; he was mainly chin and long, dark eyelashes with a mass of raven hair flopping across his face as he concentrated on his drawing, leaning on one elbow.
“Music?” Frank asked after a few moments of silence, looking up at Gerard, who’s face was tensed in concentration.
“Do you even have to ask?” Gerard smiled slightly, but didn’t stop drawing.
Frank drew out his beloved iPod and scrolled down to find Nirvana’s ‘Bleach’, before turning the volume up full so as Kurt Cobain’s husky voice leaked out of the buds into the soft summer air around them.
After the first song, Frank could feel himself being lulled into a peaceful doze from the warmth of Gerard’s lap and his soft breaths of concentration on brushing Frank’s cheeks along with the humid, pollen-filled summer air that gently carried in the sounds of a distant lawnmower and the swallows’ calls to mingle with the soft music and the familiar scratching of Gerard’s favourite 3B pencil.
“Good day?” Gerard asked softly, shading his drawing.
“Mmmm,” Frank breathed sleepily, nestling into a more comfortable position on his friend’s lap. “…You?”
“I guess…we had art,” Gerard replied quietly. “We were learning how to texture oil paints and use watercolours with other materials. I can’t wait to try it out properly at home.”
Frank felt a soft smile stretch across his face at his friend’s enthusiasm.
For a few moments, he watched Gerard’s experienced, nimble fingers creating a world on the blank paper before him, watching how his best friend smudged so carefully and used thick strokes and soft strokes of the pencil. Frank thought it was fascinating. He’d always loved watching Gerard draw; seeing the silent concentration on his friend’s face and watching him create his own little worlds in black and white charcoal.
“What does art mean, Gee?” Frank asked suddenly, after a couple more minutes of comfortable silence, having been letting his mind wander over the concept for the past few moments of listening to ‘Floyd the Barber’ and Gerard’s strokes of pencil. Frank opened his eyes and looked up questioningly at the earnest face of his best friend, who sighed and paused his drawing, but was unable to suppress a slight smile at Frank’s curiosity.
“Art is expression, I guess,” Gerard mused, eyes thoughtful as he considered the question. “It’s being able to express whatever you want however you want. No one can tell you to stick to the rules because there are none. Art…Art is freedom, Frankie.”
“Freedom…” Frank repeated quietly, turning his gaze up to the brilliantly blue sky and watching the swallows dancing. “I wonder how many people are really free.”
“Not many,” Gerard replied, smiling slightly as he continued with his drawing.
“Do you think the swallows are free?” Frank asked seriously, looking back at Gerard’s earnest face of concentration.
Gerard laughed softly, shaking his head slightly. “You and the swallows, Frankie,” he sighed fondly. “But yes,” he gazed up and the graceful birds dipping across the ocean of endless blue. “I suppose they are.”
They lapsed into contented silence for a while, Frank concentrating on the guitar melody to ‘About a Girl’.
“I love this song,” he mused, playing with the grass by Gerard’s knee and gazing up at the dappled light and the blue sky above the leaves of the oak tree.
“Me too,” Gerard agreed softly.
“I’ve missed this, Gee,” Frank said suddenly, looking seriously at Gerard. “I miss you. Why don’t you hang out with me more these days?”
Gerard ducked his head and shrugged.
“Seriously, Gee?” Frank persisted.
“I just…thought you might not want me when you’re with Cindy,” Gerard mumbled, shading furiously, hair hiding his face.
“Not want you?!” Frank exclaimed loudly, Making Gerard jump and smudge his drawing. “Gee, you’re my best friend! I don’t know what I’d do without you.”
Gerard said nothing, just continued to draw feverishly.
“Please hang out with me and Cindy sometimes at least?” Frank pleaded.
“You really want me?” Gerard whispered so softly Frank barely caught it.
“Yes, you idiot!” Frank said incredulously. “Of course I do.”
“I guess I could try…” Gerard muttered, cheeks slightly pink.
“Promise?” Frank said seriously.
“…Promise, Frankie,” Gerard murmured, before returning to his drawing.
Frank was satisified, and curled back more comfortably into his best friend’s lap. In all the years Frank had known him, Gerard had never broken a promise.
They spent the afternoon in peaceful silence, Frank snuggled onto Gerard’s lap, gazing up at the sky and watching the swallows while Gerard drew, until fireflies started to dance into the hazy horizon, and the blistering summer sun started to sink into the heady skyline in a potent glow of gold, casting the shadows long and wavering on the long grass. Eventually, the two boys conceded that it was time to head home, although Frank didn’t really want to move from the comforting warmth of Gerard’s lap and trail home at all.
“You wanna hang at mine?” Frank asked hopefully as Gerard gently pushed Frank off of him and started gathering his things together.
Gerard bit his lip, considering, and Frank once again caught that troubled glimpse of something hidden in his friend’s almond shaped eyes, but then Gerard shook it off and said- “…Uh, sure,” and smiled slightly shyly at Frank.
“Great,” Frank beamed, pocketing his iPod but keeping Nirvana’s ‘Bleach’ running on replay so as the soft music filtered out of his jeans pocket as they waked away from the shade of the tree and out into the golden sunset and the hazy air of fireflies and meadow grass pollen.
As Frank glanced fleetingly at the skinny, earnest figure sloping along beside him with a thousand tendrils of messy midnight hair, trailing converse laces and milky-white forearms exposed from where the sleeves of his paint-stained school shirt were rolled up, Frank got a funny feeling in the depths of his chest and suddenly a surge of affection and closeness towards his best friend. He felt he should almost snake his hand out and hold Gerard’s to link them together.
But that would just be weird, so Frank stuck his hands determinedly in his jeans pockets, somewhat perplexed at the mysterious urge as they continued down the field and squeezed through the gap in the hedge at the bottom, getting tangled in the same wildflowers and flowering grasses Frank had earlier.
However, they eventually squeezed out the other side onto the parched street, panting slightly. Frank glanced up at Gerard and smiled slightly as he saw his friend had a daisy entangled in his jet-black hair.
“You’ve got…” Frank reached out and gently plucked the wilting flower from Gerard’s ebony locks. He held the daisy up in explanation.
“Oh,” Gerard’s cheeks turned a delicate kind of pink, as they started off down the deserted, sweltering sun-ghosted street in companionable silence and Frank found himself thinking about just how incredibly soft and silky Gerard’s hair had felt under his callused fingertips. Like black water.
Frank’s house was only a few blocks from the school, and what felt like no time later, they’d meandered their way to the squeaky garden gate and were going up the garden path, golden sunset shimmering all around them like fireflies.
Still in a strangely potent kind of silence, they trooped up the stairs to Frank’s room, which was right at the top of the house, and caught the sun easily, making it almost as hot as the outside, although without the horrible stickiness of the air.
His room always looked empty without Gerard, who spent almost as much time at Frank’s house as Frank did. To begin with, they’d played red Indians and made tepees out of Frank’s batman duvet or built giant Lego towers, or Gerard would draw lots of pictures of him and Frank as superheroes, sitting at Frank’s desk with his tongue poking out of his lips in concentration, legs dangling, too short to reach the ground.
Later on, they’d spend hours and hours playing games on Frank’s ancient computer and groaning about the amount of homework school was starting to give them while devouring copious amounts of sugary snacks.
In most recent years, Frank would strum away at his guitar and Gerard would draw earnestly, while a series of rock bands would blast from Frank’s stereo system as they did their separate things in contented silence or talked animatedly about anything and everything.
And then Cindy had come along and Gerard had started to drift.
But Gerard was here now. Frank could see the way he kept tucking the uncut strands of hair behind his ear and smell his vanilla shampoo. Gerard was here, and it was all okay again. Frank was feeling an unexplainable closeness to his raven-haired best friend as they closed Frank’s bedroom door behind them and dumped their schoolbags on the carpet.
“Um, music?” Frank asked, shaking himself out of the quiet as Gerard kicked his converse off by their discarded schoolbags.
“Whatever you’ve got in,” Gerard replied, so Frank just plugged his stereo system in and pressed play. Once again, Nirvana’s ‘Bleach’ trickled from the speakers and into the still, lingering sunlight of Frank’s room.
“Oh, sorry…want me to change it?” Frank asked, realizing they had spent the afternoon listening to the same album.
“No, it’s cool- I love this album,” Gerard smiled, sitting down tentatively on Frank’s bed and pulling his knees up to his chest. “It reminds me of the summer, for some reason.”
So Frank left it and flopped down happily on the bed opposite Gerard so as he could gaze up at the ceiling which Gerard had helped him paint last summer; it was a beautiful deep indigo with star constellations shimmering purples and greens and silvers, along with a delicate crescent shaped moon with bats flitting across it. ‘A world for dreams’, Gerard had told him once they’d finally finished, tired and splattered in various colors of paint.
Frank loved the ceiling. It always made his mind wander and dream and meander into conclusions and wonderings.
There was a contented silence for a moment, until Frank suddenly said-
“Do you think there’s anything out there?” and he turned to look at Gerard, who was staring in silence out at the setting sun that glowed through Frank’s window, hot and gold, illuminating all the tiny little particles of dust in his room so as they drifted gently through the air, like the fireflies flitting through the dusk.
“Will you ever stop questioning things, Frankie?” he sighed, turning to look at his best friend, but he was smiling gently as he said it.
“Of course not!” Frank exclaimed. “There’s SO much out there, Gee- so much to be questioned and discovered and answered and never answered. How much will any of us really know? Will we know why we exist? Will we know why swallows fly to Africa? Will we know what love is?”
“Part of the magic, Frankie,” Gerard said softly, tucking his straying ebony hair behind his ear and looking earnestly at me. “Is not knowing. But I think almost everyone gets to find out what love is someday. That’s one of the few things I think most people get to find the answer to.”
“But how do you know when you know?” Frank sighed, looking back up at the ceiling.
“You just do, Frankie,” Gerard replied gently, looking down at Frank’s shining eyes that glittered with so much interest and enthusiasm, olive and russet curiosity.
“Why are you so sure?” Frank asked, sitting up suddenly, cross-legged, hair flopping in chestnut waves across his face as he gazed questioningly and intently at Gerard, eyes bright.
Gerard dropped his gaze to duvet, shrugging.
“Don’t go all shruggy on me, Gee,” Frank smiled fondly, reading his best friend like a book, leaning towards Gerard and poking his chest gently. “Tell me. How do you know?”
Gerard sighed heavily, but looked up at Frank’s bright eyes seriously. When he spoke, his voice shook slightly, as if he was scared. “…It’s when you find someone who understands like no one else does. It’s when you get butterflies in your stomach when they smile. It’s when you cry yourself to sleep because you know they’ll never like you that way. It’s when you can’t get them out of your thoughts. It’s when…”
He trailed off, leaving the small space between him and Frank oddly charged and full of something new, something electric, something Frank didn’t quite understand. It was as if all the world around them had crashing to a standstill, and it was just him and Gerard in their his golden bedroom. All he could do was continue to gaze into Gerard’s potently emerald irises and wonder what those eyes saw.
“It’s when…” Gerard mumbled. “…You can’t stop yourself doing something crazy…”
Before Frank could ask him what he meant by that, Gerard’s face was suddenly very, very close. Frank could feel the warmth of his friend’s shaking breath against his lips, smell the ghost of cloudy lemonade and flowering grass on his breath. He could almost feel Gerard’s heartbeat as he stared, unable to break the engulfing gaze between their eyes. Gerard had gotten this funny, slightly wild look in his eyes, but before Frank could wonder what it meant, Gerard’s pale pink lips were pressing shyly, softly, sweetly against his.
Frank stopped breathing. Shock flooded through him, numbing him to the bone so as time was nothing and yet everything at the same time. He was frozen, but he could feel one thing other than the light, silky softness of his best friend’s lips; the wild, heavy pounding of his heart against his ribs.
However, before Frank could unfreeze himself and figure anything out, Gerard seemed to sense his friend’s hesitance and drew back, eyes tortured, expression full of horror at what he’d just so impulsively done. He clapped a hand over his mouth, cheeks burning with humiliation. “Oh-oh-god,” stammered, eyes wide as he scrambled desperately off the bed.
“Wait!” Frank’s voice felt oddly detached from himself as he swung himself off of the bed, feeling as though he was in some kind of surreal dream, and grabbed Gerard by the back of his shirt to prevent him escaping.
“Frankie, let me go, please,” Gerard panicked, flailing and trying to release himself from Frank’s grip.
“Gee,” Frank murmured, still feeling dream-like. “Please turn round.”
After a few more moments of wild struggling and what Frank thought sounded horribly like stifled sobs, Gerard finally turned round, eyes wide and wild, cheeks still burning.
Frank’s heart turned over in his chest as he was engulfed by his best friend’s potent, enchantingly emerald eyes laced with a wild fear Frank had never seen in their pooling depths before. They were amazing eyes; they seemed to have no end, churning and seething with the tortured agony Gerard had silenced. But his eyes screamed it out. Frank could see every tiny little fleck of honeyed hazel hurt mingling with the glittering green, unfolding into the depths like sweet poison.
They were beautiful.
And as Frank stood there, enthralled in the captivation of Gerard’s unending eyes, he realized something groundbreaking that made his heart turn over.
Gerard was beautiful.
Absolutely fucking beautiful. The most breathtakingly beautiful person Frank had ever laid eyes on. He wasn’t cute or pretty or hot…he was just pure, misfit beauty. Frank couldn’t understand how he’d never realized this before; how he could have been blind to that perfect, porcelain skin or that adorably disheveled hair that fell across Gerard’s face, half-shrouding his expression with tangled tendrils blacker than a million midnight wishes. And those eyes…those enchanting, emerald eyes.
In that moment, everything about the trembling, raven-haired boy in front of him drew Frank closer, tugging at the strings of his heart almost painfully. His presence was reeling Frank in the way the unanswerable questions of the azure sky did.
The long, nimble fingers with ghostly skin stained at the tips with charcoal. The paint stained school shirt and the fraying tie lying limply on his skinny chest. The way his uncut hair tumbled across his face. It was all perfect. He was all perfect.
And he was Gerard. The Gerard Frank had grown up with, had played imaginary games with and daydreamed with, had cried with and laughed with, had loved, and the trembling Gerard who had just kissed Frank, softly and shyly with silky soft cherry lips that Frank could still feel the ghost of lingering on his, tasting of lemonade and skin and summer. He wanted to feel those lips again. Again and again and again.
And for once, Frank didn’t ask questions; he didn’t need to, because he was on the brink of understanding, and only actions would feed his curiosity now. So Frank stepped closer to Gerard, heart beating very fast, and cupped his trembling hand under Gerard’s chin, feeling the soft, warm skin and tilting it tenderly so as Gerard had to meet his eyes. A shock of something shot through Frank as their gazes met, and he swallowed, feeling as if his heart was pounding in his throat.
Something about Gerard was reeling Frank in, closer and closer, body and soul. It felt as though the small space of air between them had condensed to heady, dusted summer gold, flavoured delicately by the ghost of the cloudy lemonade they’d been drinking earlier and Frank could now subtly taste on Gerard’s trembling breaths that mingled between them.
The air was fizzling with something new; something charged and exciting and forbidden, something that made Frank’s pulse race and his heart stammer unevenly in his chest as he subconsciously moved slowly closer.
Frank could feel his heart thumping wildly against his ribs and he felt sort of unreal; completely compelled by the newly intoxicating presence of his best friend as he drew closer still, feeling Gerard’s breathing falter slightly in shock.
Still feeling as though he was in some kind of dream, Frank drew closer and closer to Gerard, not once breaking the gaze that made the room seem oddly airless and Frank kept having to remember to breathe as he drew closer and closer and closer still until he was resting his forehead against Gerard and breathing heavily as if he’d just run countless laps round the sports field at school.
Frank felt Gerard’s breaths stutter to little shaky gasps, and this somehow gave him the little push of courage he needed. His heart felt like it was going to explode as he breathed in the heady, tense, electrified air in the very small space between his and Gerard’s lips, until it was too much to bear, and Frank closed his eyes and grabbed the back of Gerard’s head and pulled his mouth down so as it sank into Franks, soft and warm.
Sparks rocketed up Frank’s spine and his lower belly flipped wildly as he felt Gerard sigh softly, eyes fluttering closed against Frank’s cheek. Frank just kept his lips motionless against his best friend’s for a few frenzied heartbeats, trying to get used to the feeling of Gerard’s gently chapped, warm lips pressed to his as his heart rate skyrocketed, going completely crazy until Frank couldn’t ignore it any longer. Tentatively, he started to work his lips shyly against Gerard’s, heart beating even faster than before as his knees felt ready to give way at any second, especially when Gerard started to move his lips gently against Frank’s too, soft and sweet and innocent, sighing gently as his arms tentatively snaked their way round Frank’s, pulling him close.
They just stayed like that for a few moments, just getting used to the brand new feelings that were suddenly overwhelming them, but then Gerard breathed out shakily into Frank’s mouth, and Frank shuddered as his lower belly went all tingly again. He started kissing Gerard more deeply, losing himself in the soft, wet warmth of his best friend’s mouth that made sparks erupt all the way down his spine.
It wasn’t a movie-star kiss. It wasn’t how Cindy kissed Frank. It wasn’t fireworks and explosions.
It was real. Wonderfully, tremblingly real. Full of raw, uncertain passion, shaking hands and stuttering hearts.
And it was the best thing Frank had ever experienced; the silky soft shyness of Gerard’s lips, the tremble of the hands uncertainly clasping his waist, the midnight black hair tickling his face, the small, soft little shaking sighs into his mouth that made Frank feel as though his chest was going to detonate.
Frank’s chest almost seemed to ache with the strength of emotion he was feeling towards his best friend, his heart strings tugging with tenderness as he crushed himself into Gerard’s skinny body, wanting him, needing him, craving him, as their lips slowly became more confident, kissing more deeply and urgently, noses clashing and bumping slightly as they pressed themselves needily closer to each other.
Heart pounding fiercely, Frank snaked his tongue out to tentatively brush Gerard’s soft lips, almost asking his friends permission. In response, Gerard let out a deep, shaky sigh and opened his mouth slightly, allowing the kiss to deepen further, lips starting to tangle more confidently and urgently. Frank felt a wonderful tingly squeezing feeling shudder through his lower belly as his tongue collided with Gerard and he was unable to stifle a soft moan, mind hazy and lost in this new cloud of lust.
It was possessing him. Gerard was possessing him; the warm wetness of his mouth and the lingering taste of cloudy lemonade, the shuddery, hot breaths into Frank’s mouth and funny little gaspy sounds when Frank pulled him closer still.
Somewhat wildly, Frank ran his hands up Gerard’s neck, feeling goose bums erupt on the pale skin as he tangled his hands into his best friend’s midnight hair, tugging him closer so as their bodies were crushed together and Frank could feel every bone and curve of Gerard’s skinny body.
Finally, they were forced to break apart for air, and their gasps filled the room, deafening the small, sun-soaked space as Frank leaned his forehead against Gerard’s again, eyes still shut as he tried to take in the enormity of what had just happened. Eventually, he summoned enough strength to let them flutter open, and found himself staring straight into Gerard’s wide, dilated emerald eyes which instantly sent him into a turmoil and he groaned softly, heart hammering at his ribs, and smashed his lips into Gerard’s once more, losing himself in this wonderful, brand new haze of emotions.
It was ecstasy. The way their lips bumped urgently, pressing fiercely against each other as their tongues lapped fleetingly together for a couple of frantic heartbeats before they had to momentarily break off for air, gasping. Each time their lips met, it became more urgent, more haphazard and fragmented, until they were stumbling frantically out of sync, just meshing irregularly and fiercely, bumping desperately into each other before gasping desperately in between and clutching each other closer.
Frank was completely overwhelmed with all these new feelings, and soon, it wasn’t enough. No matter how fiercely he crushed Gerard to him, it wasn’t close enough. No matter how deeply he kissed him, it wasn’t just wasn’t enough to stifle the unknown longing inside of him that tugged at his chest almost as desperately and powerfully as the millions questions he wanted to ask and thousands things he wanted to understand about the world.
The next time the broke off for air, gasping more loudly into the silence, Frank slid his frantic hands under the hem of Gerard’s paint-stained school shirt, sparks shooting up his spine as his eager fingers wandered feverishly up and down his best friend’s back, caressing the soft skin and the jutting bones of his spine.
Half unintentionally, Frank let out another soft moan as Gerard started to shakily kiss his way down Frank’s neck, lips moist and hot and tender on the goose bumpy skin. In order to prevent any more groans slipping out, Frank bit Gerard’s shoulder, feeling his stomach turn inside out as Gerard gasped into the tingling flesh of Frank’s neck.
Everything about Frank felt as if it was going crazy; his mind, his heart, his pulse, his lower-belly, all because of the pink-cheeked, raven-haired boy devouring his neck. Heart pounding, Frank slid his hands round to the front of Gerard’s shirt and started feverishly unbuttoning it with trembling fingers while Gerard himself was nibbling and sucking at Frank’s collarbone.
After what felt like eternity, the buttons were undone, and Frank pulled the shirt from Gerard’s chest, unknotting the tie and throwing it to the floor along with the shirt. Almost instantly, Gerard froze at Frank’s neck.
Sensing his best friend’s tension, Frank pulled away, looking worriedly up at Gerard, who was biting nervously at his lower lip so hard Frank thought it was going to draw blood. Behind his ebony hair, Frank could see he was blushing furiously.
“…Gee?” Frank murmured, trailing a gentle hand down Gerard’s torso, not taking his gaze from his friend’s uneasy expression. “…Is this too fast?”
Gerard shook his head frantically, biting harder still at his lip.
“Then what’s up?” Frank asked softly, his voice sounding slightly rough as if he used it for weeks. His heart was still thumping wildly against his ribs.
“I…I’m…not exactly…pretty,” Gerard mumbled, ducking his head and not meeting Frank’s eyes.
Frank blinked. “What?” he asked incredulously. “Are you serious?”
Gerard glanced up fleetingly at Frank from behind his hair, and in that split second look, Frank knew that his best friend was being completely honest. Frank’s chest suddenly ached horribly, the thought of his best friend not realizing how beautiful he was tugging painfully at his heartstrings.
“Gee, you’re beautiful,” Frank said honestly. “Don’t ever think you’re not.”
Frank half wanted to ask more, to find out just why it was so many beautiful, talented, wonderful people, just like the raven-haired boy trembling in front of him, seemed convinced that they were ugly. But in that moment, questions didn’t seem to hold quite such an overwhelming importance to Frank, so he remained silent.
“But-” Gerard started to protest.
“You are, okay?” Frank said firmly, kissing Gerard lightly on the lips to enforce his point. The contact made his stomach flip inside out, and he felt Gerard sigh shakily against his mouth.
“…Okay,” he murmured, eyes half closed as he started kissing Frank properly again, deeply and potently, as if he was trying to drown himself in Frank and forget about his insecurities.
This time, the kiss was more like the first; tender and full of trembling passion, but more confident than before, as Frank gently danced his fingers down Gerard’s spine, feeling the taller boy shiver slightly under his touch. Frank wanted to prove silently to his best friend how beautiful he thought he was. As their lips grew more furious, meshing feverishly fast together as breath flowed unevenly between them, Gerard’s long, nimble fingers slid to the front of Frank’s school shirt, unbuttoning it much more efficiently than Frank had his, and tossing it to the floor.
As their lips bumped fiercely once more, their bare chests pressed crushingly together, and both let out stifled involuntary gasps at the feel of flesh on flesh. Frank felt as though every nerve in his body was a live wire as Gerard kissed him more passionately, and their hips ground needily together, making Frank bite down hard on Gerard’s bottom lip and Gerard gasp involuntary into Frank’s mouth.
Frank gripped Gerard more furiously, propelling him so as they both were stumbling blindly towards the bed, lips still locked in fierce combat, hips grinding intermittently, straining against the confines of their jeans, digging nails into each other’s bare backs or tangling them in each other’s hair as they staggered back onto the bed, Frank landing on top of Gerard still without breaking the kiss that was rapidly getting harder and faster.
Heart thumping crazily, lost in a mist of lust, Frank ground his hips down on Gerard’s beneath him, and they both groaned, Gerard digging his hands into the flesh of Frank’s back and making his belly tingle and flip even more.
Sweat was beginning to ooze from their pores as they ground more frantically together, a thin sheen of sweat coating their torsos and making it easier for them to move yet still keep kissing fastly, furiously.
The feel of Gerard’s hardness rutting up against his was almost too much for Frank; pleasure was shooting through his cock and lower belly almost like pain, white hot and yearning, making his heart stammer so fast that he was forced to break the kiss with Gerard to take needy gulps of the air around them.
Frank glanced down at the boy beneath him, and realized a second too late that it was fatal; Gerard was a writhing, disheveled mess of swollen lips and glistening white chest, the pupils of his enchanting eyes darkened and dilated with the same lust Frank could feel throbbing through him and possessing him.
Overcome completely, Frank dipped down and started sucking and gnawing at the flesh of Gerard’s neck, making the raven-haired boy gasp out and tangle his long-fingered hands deep into Frank’s messy chestnut hair, gripping it fiercely as Frank trailed his way sloppily down to Gerard’s chest, savoring the taste of sweat and lemonade on his smooth skin.
He reached Gerard’s lower belly, and still nibbling and licking at the sensitive flesh to make his friend gasp and cling even more tightly to his hair, started to shakily unbutton the taller one’s jeans.
Gerard sat up and started doing the same to Frank, nibbling on the shorter’s ear and giving Frank wonderful shivery goose bumps all the way down his neck while both struggled out of their jeans, leaving them gaspy and shuddering and wide-eyed, staring at each other.
They’d come to an involuntary pause, breathing shakily and pushing tangled hair out of their eyes as they sat opposite each other on Frank’s bed.
“…You…you wanna…?” Frank asked, suddenly feeling nervous butterflies swooping round his stomach as he looked at his pink-cheeked best friend.
Gerard bit his lip, and for a horrible moment, Frank thought he was going to be harshly rejected in such a vulnerable situation. Frank wasn’t a naturally vulnerable or shy person, but suddenly he felt way out of his depth. He felt scared. He was about to delve into something far more unknown that most of the things he wanted to discover and understand, and it scared him.
But then Gerard smiled gently, the smile he’d given Frank for years and years; the honest, wide smile that lit up his whole face and showed off his cute little teeth. It was the same smile Gerard had given Frank when he patched up the latter’s knee after Frank had cut it open trying to ‘fly’ from the tree in the back yard. It was the same smile that Gerard had given him to reassure him on their first scary day at high school. And it was the same smile that Gerard had given him this afternoon, when they were watching the swallows dipping and diving gracefully across the brilliant summer sky.
All of Frank’s sudden, gnawing terror evaporated, because it was just Gerard. Just him and Gerard as it had always been.
Softly, Gerard leant over and kissed Frank softly, sweetly, tenderly. He tasted of the dusty memory lemonade and adrenaline and summer, and Frank suddenly knew he was safe.
He slid his hands up into Gerard’s tangle of midnight hair and started to kiss back. Slowly at first, but then Gerard slipped a tongue in and the kiss got deeper and hotter and more urgent, until Frank was so overcome by the feel of Gerard’s mouth doing the most devastating things to his and the wonderful way his lower belly was turning inside out and sending sparks of pleasure straight to his cock that he slipped a slightly sweaty hand down between their chests.
He slid it lower and lower until it was resting on the elastic of Gerard’s boxers. Then, with a particularly devious flick of Gerard’s tongue, Frank slid his hand slightly uncertainly inside, skin on skin, sweat on sweat.
Gerard gasped out loudly into Frank’s mouth as Frank bit back his fears and wrapped his hand firmly round Gerard’s throbbing cock, feeling it twitch under his touch. Frank’s slightly shaking pumping up and down seemed to set off some kind of trigger in Gerard, who started kissing Frank wildly, messily, lips out of sync completely and tongues clashing.
Frank exhaled shakily into his best friend’s mouth as he felt Gerard’s hand pushing his own boxers down, and then doing the same to Frank, leaving them both completely naked. Frank was a little too scared to stop kissing, but Gerard didn’t seem to mind, kissing back as eagerly as before, tongue hot and wet.
Frank jumped wildly and groaned loudly as he felt Gerard’s nimble fingers curl tentatively round his own cock, and start rubbing shakily up and down the flesh, making Frank gasp and moan and bite his lower lip as more sparks of white-hot pleasure shot from his dick to his lower belly, liquidizing into a sort of melting buzz that surrounded his whole body.
After a few moments, Frank pushed Gerard back down on the bed and dived at his lips, closing his eyes as his vision was blurry and he felt vaguely dizzy and light headed with pleasure. Then, without thinking, he ground his hips down.
It felt like some kind of explosion; the feel of Gerard’s hot, pulsating flesh and hardness grinding against his own. Every nerve was on fire, his skin so hyper-sensitive that the white hot pleasure that shot through him became little white stars behind his closed eyes. All of this was completed by Gerard moaning, loudly and raggedly beneath him in a way that Frank thought wasn’t even possible, and made him want to come there and then.
As Gerard desperately snapped his hips up to grind against Frank’s again, Frank knew he wasn’t going to last much longer. He could see a thousand white blurry stars exploding before his closed eyelids. He could feel the faint thud of Gerard’s frantic heartbeat against his own. He could feel every inch of softly sweating skin on Gerard’s body. He could feel his lower belly flipping inside out and tingling so many times it felt like it was going to combust. He could feel the blinding, searing sparks of pleasure shooting up his cock as Gerard’s ground down against it.
Gerard groaned wildly, digging his nails deep into the flesh of Frank’s back, slammed his hips up to Frank’s, and Frank couldn’t take anymore as he half-moaned, have gasped, shuddered violently, and came hard in hot spurts that shook his whole body, convulsing again and again and grinding down on Gerard until he let out a low, ragged moan and Frank felt his warmth splurt violently between them.
Finally, Frank collapsed, weak-kneed and dizzy on Gerard’s sweat-soaked chest. There was silence for several long moments, during which Gerard tangled his long, shaking, sweaty fingers with Frank’s as they lay there, breathing heavily into the warm air of Frank’s sun-ghosted room.
After what felt like an eternity, Frank flopped over onto the patch of duvet beside Gerard and curled up against his raven-haired best friend’s chest, hand slung over his pale ribs so as he could feel the heartbeat of his friend gradually slowing.
Sighing shakily, Frank brushed his hair from his eyes and looked up at Gerard.
“Hey,” he murmured, voice trembling slightly.
Gerard looked down, eyes intelligently emerald and swirling with empathy and silent smiles. “Hi,” he whispered, and started to gently stroke Frank’s messy hair as their breathing slowly slowed down to peaceful sighs.
“Why didn’t you say something?” Frank mumbled suddenly, leaning into Gerard’s delicate touch.
Gerard sighed heavily, his warm breath brushing Frank’s hair and ruffling it like the balmy breeze did as they sat in the field in the blistering midday heat at lunchtime when Frank was dreaming and Gerard was drawing and they were both talking about the freedom of the swallows
“I thought you wouldn’t feel the same,” Gerard muttered, looking embarrassed.
“I do,” Frank smiled up at his friend, eyes bright. “Of course I do.”
Gerard smiled, the warmth shimmering in his hazel tinted eyes.
And as Frank lay there in the once again peaceful silence, snuggled up against his best friend, he suddenly understood.
He realized that love was something you found where you least expected it. It wasn’t having the perfect girlfriend who was pretty and intelligent and popular. It wasn’t merely marriage between two people. It wasn’t crushing deeply on someone you’d probably never speak to.
In that soft, ghosted gold moment of setting summer sun in his room, Frank realized what it really was. It was lying in the bare arms of his best friend, sweaty and smiling softly, breathing in each other’s familiar scents with the delicate flavor of lemonade lingering on his tongue, Gerard’s ebony hair tickling his cheek.
It was just knowing that there was someone out there, in that world of so many answerless questions, who understood and appreciated your quirks and your questions and everything about you. Someone who’s heart beat with yours.
And it was the skinny, softly smiling raven-haired boy with his arm curled round Frank, his almond-shaped, enchantingly emerald eyes shimmering with the contented happiness that glowed all around them; a happiness that could only exist between those two people alone.
That was what love was.
Frank sighed happily and turned his head to gaze out of the window where the golden sunlight sinking low in the clouds was filtering through into the room, as he softly kissed Gerard’s delicately pink cheek.
Beyond the glass, the swallows were still dancing across the blue and pink sunset streaked sky.
What did you guys think? I really hope it was okay. I was so nervous about posting this! I’d love love love to know your thoughts on it, cause I worked like, really hard on it… Please R&R? Thanks so much for reading, love you all so much!