“Okay, Hozzie. Let’s pack your things so you can go to Gerard’s house…” Frank Iero tells his daughter Hozzie, helping her put her tiny clothes into a small suitcase.
“Why can’t I stay here with you and mommy tonight?” She questions, looking up at him with her large blue eyes. Frank smiles and pushes her brown fringe out of her eyes.
“Mommy and I would like to have a night all to ourselves…” He tells her, putting the final item into the suitcase and zipping it shut. Hozzie giggles and skips out of her room and down the stairs.
“Okay, dad.” She says, waiting patiently at the door. He just chuckles at her adorableness, kissing his wife goodbye and getting the car keys.
By the time Frank and Hozzie arrive at Gerard Way’s house, the sun has gone day and the moon is shining brightly. Hozzie waits for her dad to open the door, because, well.
Seven year old Hozzie is terrified of the dark. Horrified.
She clings to her dad’s arm as he walk to the door. Frank rings the door bell, and they wait for a few moments until the door opens.
“Hey, Hozzie!” Gerard says, grinning widely. He tucks his matted black hair behind his ear and gives her a hug.
“Why are you all covered in paint?” She asks, pointing at his paint splattered arms. He looks down at them and laughs.
“Oh… I was painting and didn’t have time to clean up afterword.” He tells her.
“Okay.” She giggles, walking into his house and looking around. She stands there while Gerard and Frank converse for a few moments. After a while, Frank gives Hozzie a small wave and heads out the door.
“So, Hozzie, what do you want to do?” He asks, looking at the clock. 6:50 PM. Only a few hours ‘til her bedtime.
Hozzie shrugs, causing Gerard to sigh. Then her face lights up.
“Can you draw me?” She asks excitedly. Gerard chuckles.
“Well… I suppose. As long as you sit still.” He tells her, gently patting her on the head. She giggles.
“I will.” She promises. And with that, the both of them head up to Gerard’s studio.
“Do you have any dollies?” Hozzie asks, sitting on a stool and swinging her legs back and forth. Gerard sighs.
“No, I don’t Hozzie. Now can you please sit still?” He says, barely looking up from his sketch. Hozzie nods. After a few minutes she starts to hum.
It’s a childlike tune, but her voice was so clear and beautiful. It made Gerard even more inspired to draw this little girl.
To draw her in all her beauty. The way her eyes shined. The way her mouth formed the words perfectly. The way she looked like she aged many years when she sang.
Gerard was so wrapped up in his drawing, he didn’t notice that Hozzie stopped singing and tiptoed quietly over to him.
“Wow.” She says, just as Gerard makes the finishing touches on the drawing. “That’s… so amazing, Gee.” She whispers.
“Just like you, Hozzie. Just like you.”
“Do we really have to go to bed now? This game is so fun!” Hozzie whines, sitting cross-legged on the floor. Gerard smiles apologetically.
“Yes… I already let you stay up and hour late, Hoz. So now it’s time to sleep.” He replies, packing the candy land game back into the box. He stands up, and heads toward the closet.
“But… where am I gonna sleep?” Hozzie asks quietly. Gerard nods toward the couch.
“That pulls out to make a bed.” He says simply, pushing the game into the closet and heading back to the couch. Hozzie watches silently as he pulls the bed out and makes it. The sheets are fuzzy and pink.
“Then… where are you sleeping?” She asks, trying not to let her voice tremble. All alone in the dark? Not for Hozzie.
Gerard sighs and turns toward her.
“In my room.” And with that, he plugs a nightlight in, then switches the lights off. “Call me if you need anything.”
Hozzie still sat on the floor, watching him lock the doors, and then go down in the basement toward his room.
And then she sat. She listened. She watched. She didn’t even know what she was waiting for.
Maybe for Gerard to realize what a mistake he made to leave her in the dark alone, and come back upstairs? She wasn’t really sure.
After an hour, she took her suitcase and tiptoed into the bathroom. She changed into her nightgown and brushed her teeth. And then, she headed back out into Gerard’s big living room.
She crawled into the big couch bed and laid down.
She attempted to close her eyes, but every time she did, something scary would flat across her vision, or she would hear a sound, and her eyes would spring open.
Her fear wallowed in the pit of her stomach, and her throat tightened with tears.
And she cried.
She cried and cried and cried. She hated the dark. Hated it. And she hated Gerard for leaving her alone in it.
“Hozzie? Wassa matter?” Gerard asked sleepily, walking up the stairs from his bedroom.
“I-I’m af-f-fraid of the d-d-dark!” She wailed. Gerard sighed and climbed onto the bed with her.
“You should’ve told me…” He whispered, wrapping the crying little girl in his arms.
“I wanted t-t-to be a b-b-big girl.” She sobbed. Gerard calmly stroked her back.
And then he remembered her singing. The way she sang when he was drawing. And, he did something he had never done before.
He started singing to her.
Gerard had never sang in front of anyone, so his voice was tentive and quiet. But after a few moments, it grew stronger.
"Hush, little baby, don't say a word. Papa's gonna buy you a mockingbird…” He sang, and Hozzie stopped crying.
“And if that mockingbird won't sing, Papa's gonna buy you a diamond ring…” By then, her breathing had slowed, and she was slumping against him.
He lay back, making sure to keep the small girl in his arms, and continued to sing the whole song. And once it was over, he too sank into a deep, peaceful slumber.
So yea. I hope you didn't hate it too much... and if you did, I will gladly rewrite it.(: I will say though, I had a lot of fun writing it!!