“We also know we had a weird kink for costumes” Kobra added and we started to uncontrollably laugh.
After approximately 20 minutes we got lucky. I spotted an area reflecting the moonlight quite differently than the sand and I sighed with relief when it turned out to be the lid we were looking for. This time it was easier to push it aside.
I remembered there was a ladder inside, but just in case we tied the security ropes. I slid inside and Poison threw me two flashlights we took from the base. Moments later he joined me, though first he almost drew the lid, leaving only a tiny gap.
We turned on our flashlights and I smiled to him, grateful that he agreed to take me here.
“Oh, wow” he sighed. “There is lots of stuff in here! Is there anything specific we are looking for?”
“Uhm… Well, I don’t think we can find here any weapon or anything like that, unless we try to kill drac with CDs” I explained and he smiled to me. “I just thought… Maybe there is something what would stimulate our memory. Something that would make us remember…”
“Alright. Any memory from our life, no matter how stupid, will make me happy. So what? We just dig through that?”
“Yeah. Just let set the alarm for 4am? We need to get back before guys wake up…”
It gave us only two hours, but Poison nodded in agreement. We didn’t need any of them to worry.
“Ok. CDs first?”
And we kneeled next to a number of boxes, opening it one buy one and checking the contents. Most of them remained unfamiliar to us, but we found some more from Green Day which we decided to keep and try to put them into the radio in our car. We also stumbled across a band named Anthrax and Poison insisted that it had to something with his brother. So it joined other things in the “keep it” box.
Then we moved to the books which were mixed with comics, but we didn’t really complain. I suddenly felt an urge to keep them all, but Poison tried to talk me out of it by calling me a motherfucking bookworm, which kinda explained the letters on my fingers. I settled for The Catcher in The Rye, 1984, Harry Potter and some other titles. Poison took Doom Patrol, The Sandman and Watchmen. He smiled to me coyly as he put them into the box.
We also decided we had to take some magazines with us, but there was just too many to choose from. Mainly music ones, but also National Geographic and some about fucking gardening. I took about dozen editions of Kerrang and started to look through them. But I definitely wasn’t expecting what I found in one of them.
“Poison?” I asked with a shaky voice.
“Is it… Is it you?” I mumbled the question, though sure as hell I knew it was him. There was a picture of his face, much younger face, with longer and black hair, but it was definitely him. There was also written couple of lines I didn’t have a chance to read yet, but his face was on the page with a number of awesome musicians and bands whose albums with found in boxes.
“Holy shit” he mumbled after a minute.
“What does it say?”
“Gerard Way, the lead singer of My Chemical Romance, confirms the big return of the band. The album is due to come out in the end of the year, though the title wasn’t released yet. But we have something to wait for – MCR works with Rob Cavallo, who also produced albums for Green Day” he read for me. “HOLY SHIT.”
I looked at him with my mouth hanging open. “Dude, you… you were in a band! In.. You… GERARD” I managed.
“Gerard. Your fucking name is Gerard. Oh my god” I tried to catch my breath. “Gerard Arthur Way. Born and raised in New Jersey. Went to an art school! You have your own comic! And a band! And… sweet Jesus!”
His name was apparently a key to release all the information about him storaged in my mind and I couldn’t shut my mouth. “And you like Venti mocha frappucino with no whipped cream more than your life and you worked for Cartoon Network and your favorite episode of Friends is when Joey…”
“SHUT UP” he suddenly said. And I did, taken aback with the outburst. “Just, please stop.”
I had no idea what to do, as he hid his face in his hands and for a long time said nothing.
“Poison?” I tried after a while.
“I… I know we came here to find something like that… Well. Not like THAT, but… Ugh, you know what I mean” he mumbled and I nodded. “But now it’s just too overwhelming.”
I could tell. The images of him and of things he liked just possessed my mind.
“You know what the funny thing is?” he asked after a moment. And not waiting for my reply continued “That I only remember those things when you tell them.”
“You… What? You don’t… Remember?”
“No, I don’t remember” he confirmed. “I only now can recall things you mentioned. Uhm… But do you remember? Or are those things that popped into your head?”
“Oh… I… Uhm… I remember you, things you liked, some conversations… Mostly images” I confessed but then I realized something that put me off the scent. “Poison, I only remember you.”
“What do you mean?”
“That I only remember things about you, nothing that has something to do with others… Not even myself. I still don’t know my name.”
“Fuck. This is weird. I thought… I thought that it would pull the trigger. Hmmm… But maybe somewhere in those magazines there is more articles about My Chemical Romance? Maybe you were in the band? Maybe Kobra or Star were there?”
“We would have to take all of them” I replied, looking at the pile of magazines in front of us.
“I’ll carry them” he said immediately.
“Don’t be stupid.”
“It’s unfair you know everything about me now and I know nothing about you!... And the others” he added and looked away, biting his lip.
“Can you tell me what the hell is wrong with you?” I honestly didn’t know what happened with my brain, but suddenly I felt angry.
“Why… why are you talking to me late at night, why did you freak out that much when Korse caught me, why did you agree to come here with me? Poison, why all of these?”
He looked away and repeated shallowly “… wrong with me.”
And before I managed to ask what he meant by that, my alarm went off.
“We should go” he said and started to gather all the stuff we agreed to take.
I knew he didn’t want to talk about this and it pissed me off. But more important was why he didn’t want to talk about it. We promised to each other, all for of us, that we should tell the truth no matter what. And never hide anything. He agreed to that. And now he was doing everything to brake that promise.
I positioned the ladder to the exit, grabbed my books and left, not waiting for him.
“WHERE THE FUCK HAVE YOU BEEN?”
It kinda reminded me of the time we came back from the Battery City for the first time. Just like then D. was waiting for us on the porch, obviously infuriated. Poison parked the car on its usual place, I took the stuff from the backseat and without a word got out from the car.
As I entered the kitchen D. shot me a death glare, but I really couldn’t bring myself to care. I threw all the books and other thing on the kitchen table.
“Dare you do explain?” I heard Death Defying snapping at Poison, but just like me he chose to ignore him.
I walked into the room we slept in and as quiet as possible, because apparently Jet Star and Kobra Kid were still sleeping, took off my jacket and slid into my bunk.
I haven’t heard Poison walking in that day.
Morning was really awkward for me, especially since Poison was nowhere to be seen. I wasn’t really in the mood to look for him and Pony promised to take care of it. Either way I had to deal with D., Jet Star and especially Kobra, who went absolutely nuts for… oh, wait for it… not taking him.
“Dude, if I knew you were up to it, it would be no fucking problem, ok? We wouldn’t have to sneak out… I thought you were all against this idea.”
“Well, too many things could go wrong and there was nothing valuable, just some old magazines…” Star trailed off, but I couldn’t let him continue anymore.
“I remembered” I told him harshly. “About Gerard… yeah, that’s Poison’s real name… about Gerard only, but still. Don’t tell me it’s not valuable.”
They all, including D. who looked the most shocked, immediately turned to me.
“You… You remembered?” asked Death Defying.
“Well, yes… There was a picture in this magazine…” I started and tried to find the right edition and then the right page. “You see? It is Poison. When I read his name… It all clicked.”
Kobra and Jet Star looked at me with open mouths, but then Kobra released a sound that I swear was not human and then said it was completely awesome and immediately wanted to know everything. But just before I started talking, D. interrupted me.
“What do you mean you remembered?!” he demanded.
“I… it…” I didn’t even know why, but I suddenly felt nervous and started to stumble over words. Maybe it was something about the look he gave me or the harsh tone of his voice, I had no idea. “He just read this to me and then all these things just… flooded my mind” I tried to explain. “I honestly don’t know what happened, ok? I’m glad it did, though. Even though I only remember things about him not the rest of us… Not even me.”
“Fun Ghoul, you don’t get this” he begun. “No one EVER remembered anything from our previous lives, ok? It was weird that you could tell that Poison and Kobra are brothers… But I tried to convince myself that it was because maybe they look alike and this is how you figured out. However this thing now? I have no idea what went wrong… or actually right… but you obviously didn’t lose connection with our previous lives.”
“Oh” I mumbled surprised. “I… I just don’t know what the trigger is.”
“Me neither, but I’m willing to figure it out.”
“You know, the first two times it happened – I just knew. But they were all small things. Or actually no, sorry, being brothers is not a small thing. But this is just one piece, you know what I mean? And this morning… I heard his name, Gerard, and wow…”
“He was in the band, right? Maybe some of us were in the band too? Surely there must more articles in those magazines” stated Jet Star.
“And maybe there will be names given too. I will look through them” Kobra offered and I smiled to him. “But first. Tell us. Everything” he said.
And I did. It felt like real class gossiping, but for once I forgot I was mad at Poison.
With our combined effort it took as only three hours to read carefully every page of the magazines me and Poison brought. Most of the articles were completely useless – words about people whose names meant nothing to us. However we dug out some parts that were interesting.
“… soon after Mikey heard his brother’s band playing, he decided to drop out from college and join him” read Jet Star out loud. “You’re apparently Mikey, dude” he said with a smile.
Kobra stopped reading whatever he was reading and looked up at Star. “Mikey?...” he repeated uncertainly. “Mikey Way. Micheal Way. No. That was weird. Mikey” it seemed like he was almost discussing it with himself and we giggled.
“Yeah, Mikey’s better” I confirmed and beamed to him.
But then he looked at me expectantly. “I’m sorry” I mumbled and looked down at the table.
“Nothing. I don’t know why, I…”
“It’s OK” he cut me off.
I had nothing more to say to him, though deep inside I felt guilty. Wasn’t it weird that the very first second Poison read his name I immediately knew everything about him? I thought… I hoped the name was the trigger. But it seemed I was mistaken and I didn’t know how to make it better. I just really wanted to help.
“Oh, I have another one” informed us Kobra like nothing happened before. “New Jersey boys, Gerard Way, Mikey Way, Frank Iero, Ray Toro and Bob Bryar… Something about MCR return. And finding some awesome drummer. And there is a picture of us standing in some creepy black costumes. Us and one blond dude… And in this pic, that blonde dude gives a piggy back ride. Wanna see?”
I nodded and he tossed the paper. It was indeed me, but with way shorter hair, lip and nose piercing and… lots of red eye shadow and eyeliner.
“That looks… That looks pretty badass” I commented and laughed.
I had to be way younger than I was now, because I had almost no tattoos on my right arm and now it was all covered by ink.
Also, the other dude, looked painfully familiar. He had strawberry blonde hair and seemed to be someone you don’t want to get in trouble with, but by the look in his eyes (and the fact he let me climb on him) I could tell he was a good guy.
“Okay. So now we know that we all were in the band and that explains why we are close to each other” I said. “Also that me or Jet Star could be named Frank, Ray or Bob. And it’s pretty awkward, because I have no idea who could be who” I added and smiled to Jet Star.
“We also know we had a weird kink for costumes” Kobra added and we started to uncontrollably laugh.
It took us another half an hour to read the rest of articles, but we didn’t find anything useful. Unfortunately no more pictures that could help us to figure out our names. And I felt disappointed that they meant nothing to me.
“I think you need to talk to Poison” told me Kobra in the evening, after he came back from so called walk. Jet Star sent to get some maps, because we were discussing what should be our next aim and while I was rummaging in boxes who walked in and took by a surprise. Again.
“Yeah. I talked to him…”
“…obviously” I interrupted him, rolling my eyes.
“…and this my conclusion” he said and bit his lip. “What?” he added in annoyed voice, when I looked at him for too long.
“What did he tell you?”
“Enough to make you go and talk to him.”
“If he wants to talk, he knows where to find me.”
“He thinks you despise him. Do not look at me this way. His words, not mind. And yes, I do understand it’s pretty ridiculous. Just please, go talk to him?”
“Oh hi” he whispered surprised when he finally noticed my presence.
It took me about twenty minutes to find him, he was sitting hidden in the shadow of the tree and some bushes which grew couple of minutes of walk behind our base. I took him a can of pasta with chili which tasted not so good served cold (however I was still a bit upset with him) and a bottle of water, since obviously, he didn’t have anything in his mouth since yesterday evening.
“Thank you” he mumbled tentatively, taking the food, but I could tell he was grateful for it.
“That’s no problem… Aren’t you scared of snakes?” I asked sitting next to him.
“They prowl only at night” he explained. “I thought you wouldn’t want to talk to me after this morning…”
“I was mad for exactly five minutes, then just too stubborn to open my mouth” I told him. “I’m sorry if I made you sit here for entire day.”
“I think I was stubborn myself. And I’m sorry.”
“You still didn’t answer my question… About what’s going on.” It maybe wasn’t most gentle way of bringing the topic back, but I needed to know.
“No, I didn’t. Not sure if I can” he said and I rolled my eyes. “No… I… Ugh, I’m just not sure myself what is it” he explained after a while.
“You could try.”
“Ugh… I just feel… very protective over you? Which is kind of weird, because it’s Kobra who is my brother and… and it’s not that strong with him.”
“Listen, we don’t know much about our past, it’s ok to be unsure and confused about things.”
“Yeah, I guess… But. Were I and Kobra close?” He tried to make it sound casual, but by the look in his eyes I could tell he was scared of the answer.
“Yes, very” I told him. “Like best friends in the world and so on.”
“What about us?”
“I honestly don’t know” I mumbled. “Hey, did Kobra tell you what we found in the magazines?”
“Yeah… That we were all in the band, his name was Mikey, one dude is missing and you are Frank, Bob or Ray.”
I giggled. “And what name suits me best, you think?”
He gazed at me for a while, studying my face and thinking. “Uhm… Frank?”
“Really?” he nodded. “Mikey said the same. And Star too. So I’m Frank, I guess. Frank Iero, wow nice. And Jet Star?”
“Why so sure?”
Poison wiggled a little on his place, put the can on the ground and only then I noticed he was sitting on something. It was another two magazines, he probably took them from the kitchen table and I haven’t noticed. He looked through the pages until he found the part he was interested it. There was an article that I decided to read later and a picture, that was signed with our names with arrows.
“You fucking asshole! That’s cheating. You already knew my name!” I yelled at him and made a grumpy face, so he could laugh.
After a while we managed to calm ourselves down and somewhat completely naturally we leaned to each other and he laid his head on my shoulder, while my arm encircled his waist. It felt good, very comfortable too and also we had a perfect view on the setting sun.
“Frank sounds really nice to me” he said.
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