Ryan Ross has guts. Short Pete Wentz/Ryan Ross one-shot. Read, review, rate and feel my love!
“C’mon, Ry. Jim-jam time.”
He stumbles towards me like a zombie, but with his arms outstretched like a teddy bear waiting to be cuddled. Ryan Ross is kind of like that; some sort of paradox that shouldn’t work but somehow does. He’s my paradox, though. All mine. Ryan Ross; property of Pete Wentz.
Everyone knows it, even the kids at the school I was attending alongside Ry until last semester, when I got expelled for setting off fireworks in the direction of the principal’s shiny new sports car. The bitch deserved it though, I wouldn’t have done it if she didn’t, deserved it for ignoring my poor little Ryan when I’d finally managed to convince him to go to her about the bastards that bully him. They bullied me too, just never to the magnitude where I’d find walking a struggle and contentment an impossibility.
So I got expelled. And in response to that, my parents kicked me out. Still worth it, though. The look on Ryan’s face when he’d seen what I did for him made it all worth it. Besides, living in my own apartment can hardly be considered a hardship; it just means Ry and I don’t have to be quiet anymore.
“But it’s four in the afternoon, Pete.” He mumbles, trying to act like the cynic that everyone expects him to be, but collapses into my arms regardless. “Too early for jim-jams.”
It breaks my heart when he’s like this; when he’s trying so hard to be himself in order to cover up the painfully obvious fact that everything inside of him is falling to shit. Everything on the outside of him appears to be heading that way too, if the bloody rips in his jeans and the splitting of his delicate lip are anything to go by.
I carefully lead him through the lounge and into my bedroom, the fifteen-year-old doing nothing to separate from me as I lay us both down on my bed. When I’ve finally managed to get the covers around our fragile bodies, the act prolonged by both Ryan’s refusal to let go and my refusal to rub against any injuries, he’s crying quietly into my shirt.
“Hey, Ry. Ry. Look at me.” My voice is soft, but not quite as soft as his hair, and when he complies I place a butterfly-like kiss onto his grazed nose. “You’re okay. You’re okay now. I’ve got you, you’re in my bed and we’re both okay.” He nods, biting down hard on his lip and reopening where it had started to scab over. “Kids at school again?”
“Uh huh.” He sounds small, tiny even, as though my caring arms could smoother him at any given moment. “Jumped me after school.” I give him a look that’s begging him to elaborate, but also lets him know I won’t push it; he doesn’t need to be pushed right now. He just needs to be snuggled. “I tried to tell on them again. Like you said to if it started getting worse. So I did. But nobody believed me and they just got angrier.”
There’s nothing I can do to stop myself from bundling him even tighter into me, it’s like a natural mechanism built within my being for when my Ryro needs cheering up and/or protecting. The same kind of logic as a hedgehog rolling into a ball to protect it’s important parts. Yeah. He’s the important parts and I’m the spikes.
He sniffles a little into my shoulder and I card my fingers through his hair, wincing as my action causes a nasty looking bruise to become painfully visible. All because he was brave enough to ask for the help that we should both understand he won’t be getting anytime soon. Because our school is full of such infallible prejudice that it actually makes me feel physically sick just to think about it.
His sniffles grow into cries and then blossom like a black rose into full-on sobs. Sobs and gasps and more tears than there are stars in the sky. When stroking him, holding him tighter, does nothing to help I start to feel panic stewing inside of me; what if they’ve gone too far; what if they’ve broken him in a way that I can’t fix?
“Breathe, Ryan. Breathe.” I start exaggerating my own breaths, remembering all of the times that Ry’s done something just because I’ve done it; just like a little kid. “That’s it, Baby. Calm down. There we go.” I offer him a small smile as he slowly regresses back into himself, into a meek silence that somehow sounds worse than the sobbing. “Want me to call Spencer?”
Spencer Smith; Ryan’s best friend, protector and, for all intents and purposes, father. Of course Spence isn’t really his father, he’s a year younger than Ry, but he sure as hell acts like it more than Ryan’s real father does. Actually, I think Spencer acts more like Ryan’s mother than father; takes him lunches into school, makes sure he does his homework on time, bakes him cookies when he’s down and does all those little things that moms do.
Yeah, Spencer Smith is Ryan Ross’ mother. Sort of.
“N-no.” I raise my eyebrows, semi-shocked at his response. “He’s on holiday with his family. Niagara Falls.”
“Yeah. Lucky bitch.”
“What about home? Want me to take you home?” I ask although I already know the answer, but it only seems fair to give him the option. Sure enough, he shakes his head as though I’ve just suggested a puppy massacre. “Okay. You can stay right here and I’ll stay right here with you.” He nods at that, a blanket of almost-contentment encompassing his features. I catch sight of another bruise, this one at the top of his right arm, like a handprint. “Do you need anything? Painkillers? Bandages? Water? A bath?”
“Huh?” I ask, my tone letting him know that I have no idea what the fuck he’s going on about. In fact, it’s making me start to think that the poor thing’s wound up with a concussion, like last time.
“I need to be brave.” He mutters, voice haunted in a way that sends a rat-race of shivers down my spine. “Like you. And them. I need to brave like you and them and then maybe they won’t pick on me. But I’m not brave. And they do.”
Oh. Oh, Ry.
I jam my lips against his before he can start sobbing again and just let them stay there until I can feel his urge to cry melt away from behind his teeth.
“Ryan, Baby, you’re braver than all of us. You don’t do anything to hurt anyone, not even them, even though you know you’ll get hurt. That takes guts, not to sink to their level. A hell of a lot of guts.” The words just flow from my mouth like they’re a well-known fact and I can’t ignore the way they’re making Ryan smile properly, at least a little.
“You think I’ve got guts?” He whispers, as though it’s the greatest thing he’s ever heard. “Really?”
“Baby, you’ve got more guts than a fucking abattoir.”
He nuzzles into me, smiles finding their respective ways onto our faces.
“Anytime, Ry. Anytime.”
A/N: Part seven in my Alphabet Challenge. Thanks for reading and please let me know what you think! :D