Everything in front of me was a blur, courtesy of the never ending flood of tears falling down my cheeks. The moment I’d turned away from Mikey it had gotten worse, and this time I just couldn’t shut it off. I couldn’t do that anymore. It’s like I’d made a trade, and lost that ability… and lost everything.
I shoved random pieces of clothing in to my bag, upset with how things just weren’t fitting. It all fit in there in the first place, but now that it was slightly unfolded and being crammed in… it suddenly didn’t fit. Damn clothing.
Footsteps alerted me, and my breath caught as I waited for them to pass. They didn’t, and the door creaked open. For a second I thought that maybe Mikey would talk to me, maybe he’d listen. It was more than I deserved but… I was still hopeful.
“I’m sorry he said those things.” Gerard was the one who spoke. I didn’t turn to face him. I didn’t like to let people see me cry. That was something about me that would never change. Crying was humiliating. This entire situation had already been humiliating enough.
“How does your face feel?” I softly asked, trying to pull the conversation away from myself. I knew what I was doing, and I knew it was wrong. I got caught, but that didn’t mean I deserved forgiveness or any kind words.
“It’ll be fine.” Gerard replied, as he took a deep breath. “I’m really sorry Taylor.”
I finally turned towards him, after quickly wiping some of my fallen tears away. “My name is Elena. Usually… I’m just, Taylor is just a work name.”
Gerard awkwardly chuckled. “You’ll always be Taylor to me.”
For some reason that felt like a compliment. “I think I’m so used to being Taylor… I don’t know how to be Elena. I don’t think I’ve been her for a very long time.”
“I think Taylor might have just become something for you to hide behind. You’re still there, you- Elena, and Taylor. You’re all still there, and it was you who fell in love with Mikey. I’m sure of that.” Gerard smiled weakly. “He’s just hurt right now.”
“He has every right to be.” I replied, as my eyes fell down towards the floor. “What I did was unforgivable.”
“The point of forgiveness isn’t to forgive the easy things.” Gerard replied. “It’s so that unforgivable things… can be forgiven.”
“Do you really believe that?” I asked, thinking over his words.
“I do.” Gerard answered.
“I don’t want him to forgive me.” I whispered, feeling the stinging pain of… emotion, such simple emotions cut me so deeply because I’d shunned them previously. “I don’t deserve that, and he doesn’t deserve that. I hurt him, and this is how it’s supposed to go. He’s supposed to move on, and be okay, and I’m supposed to forever be sorry.”
“Do you really believe /that/?” Gerard asked, surprised.
“I don’t know.” I admitted, as I turned away and sat down on the bed I’d shared with Gerard. “I don’t know what to believe anymore, or how to feel. I was comfortable Gerard. I was so comfortable feeling nothing and I was so… so safe, and now that’s all gone. It doesn’t even make sense. Mikey is just a boy, and I shouldn’t love him. None of it makes sense. I only know the little things about him, and even that… that’s not even why I love him.”
“Then why?” Gerard asked, as he slowly walked over to the bed and sat beside me. I felt the bed sink under his weight and was surprised as he placed his arm around my shoulders. It was somehow comforting.
I looked straight ahead at the closed door and let out a loud sigh. “It’s the way he makes me feel, and that’s so selfish but…” I trailed off, unsure of how to continue.
Gerard laughed, surprising me. “That’s not selfish.”
“Love isn’t a certain thing about someone, like their affinity for the color red, or the way they cut their hair… it’s how they make you feel, and how you make them feel. That’s not selfish at all Taylor. That’s… love.” Gerard pulled me towards him in a one armed hug and I sank against him easily, thinking over his words.
I cleared my throat, too uncertain about my entire situation to further comment on my feelings for Mikey. “So, how does it feel to be officially out of the closet?”
“I can’t believe I came out like that.” Gerard breathed out, as his arm tightened around my shoulders momentarily. “I was terrified over those two words: I’m gay. And now it’s over, and I just feel like maybe it should have been bigger. I expected it to be bigger.”
“Did you want a celebration, or a screaming match?” I giggled. “I could go back downstairs and totally give you one just by being there.”
“So, what? We celebrate, and Mikey and Frank can have a screaming match?” Gerard teased.
“God, it hurts just to hear his name.” I groaned. “Is that normal?”
“I think so.” Gerard replied softly. “’Cause it hurts to say Frank’s… and there it is again. I’m a sucker for pain evidently.”
“You and me both.” I answered.
“We had a good run.” Gerard and I both fell back on to the bed at once, somehow making the motion seem natural. His arm hurt beneath me but I wasn’t moving just yet. I stabbed enough people in the back, it was about time I get a feel for what it was like. “I slept with Frank.”
“You what?” I hissed out, surprised. “Last night?!?” It felt so fucking good to care about something else, even if only for a few seconds. It was a distraction, one that I desperately needed.
“Yeah… He said, he said it was the best sex he’d ever had.” Gerard’s voice became just a little quieter with each word. “And then I told him I was with you, and completely humiliated him… just to be humiliated. I kind of deserve it.”
“You were just afraid.” I didn’t feel any sympathy for myself, but I did towards Gerard. He was just afraid, and he had good reason to be afraid. No one else was being clear with their feelings. Frank certainly wasn’t. How was Gerard to know that he didn’t have to lie? Sometimes people didn’t accept the truth that well, especially when the truth was that someone close to them was gay. “He might not be happy right now, or even later but he’ll understand Gerard. Especially since he’s kind of going through the same thing. I really don’t think he thought that he was gay. I think the lie went so deep with him that he believed it, and so you’re making him face that truth… and it’s not easy. He’ll understand that it’s not easy.”
Gerard made a noise, signifying that he was listening. I knew he didn’t know what to say in return though. I didn’t really either. We’d reached our ending point, and we didn’t have any direction anymore. I just knew I was leaving, but I also knew that once I left… Mikey would be my past, instead of my present and that hurt more than I cared to admit out loud. I always knew this would end badly, but I never thought it would mean much more than any of my other jobs. I never thought Mikey would mean more, but he did.
“I need to get going.” I wiped a few stray tears away. I couldn’t remember when they fell. They were just there.
“Already?” Gerard’s tone was panicked but I couldn’t understand why. He probably didn’t want to face everything alone, and for that I was sorry. He didn’t deserve that, but if I stayed then things would be worse.
“Unless you want me to stick around and say goodbye to your parents?” I didn’t really want to have to do that, but I would if I had to. I would if it made things easier for Gerard. “What are you going to tell them?”
“My parents are fairly open.” Gerard replied softly. “I think I’m going to have to tell them the truth. I’m all out of lies.”
“Me too.” I answered, feeling emotionally spent.
“You don’t have to stay.” Gerard replied. “I know you don’t want to.”
“I don’t.” I agreed. “But I’m not so much a coward that I’d make you take the heat all alone.”
“But I deserve it.” Gerard answered quietly. “I made up this lie, and I just dragged you in. You were fairly innocent.”
“Do you know what innocent is?” I joked. “You won’t find me in the dictionary under that word anytime soon.”
Gerard chuckled. “Me neither. It’s not a very fun word though.”
We were silent for a few minutes and then I spoke, knowing I’d regret my choice. I had been thinking it over since I started accepting my feelings for Mikey though, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to accept payment for this. Even more so now. “I can’t take your money Gerard.”
“What?” Gerard turned on his side, moving his arm out from underneath me. I stared up at the ceiling, unable to face him. “But you did what I paid you to do. You didn’t do anything wrong Taylor.” For some reason I liked that he still called me that. Elena felt dirty, even though Taylor had been the one to do all of the dirty deeds in my life. It all just fell right off and hit Elena instead, and I- I didn’t want to be her.
I didn’t want to be me.
“That’s the thing though…” I turned over to face him. “I did a lot of things wrong, and not even just things here but this time things just…” I didn’t know how to make my feelings clear without turning in to a mop of wet emotions, since tears were coming easily today. “This time I can’t just ignore how wrong I’ve been. Mikey made things so much more clear. He made me feel how I want to feel, but I didn’t deserve it and so I lost it and… and I just want to stomp back down there and kiss him and I just want him so bad but I can’t have him again. I just need to face my mistakes and… fuck, I need to grow up Gerard.”
“It’s easier to grow up if you have money.” Gerard whispered.
“Maybe, but should I really be paid for a mistake like this?”
“Do you really think Mikey is a mistake?” Gerard challenged.
“No, but hurting him was.” I replied.
That shut Gerard up.
That shut me up.
I quietly got off of the bed and continued violently shoving my clothing back in to my bag. I wasn’t taking everything because everything wasn’t fitting, but I didn’t care. These possessions meant very little, and most of it was stuff Gerard bought me when we stopped to go shopping on the way down. It had been a funny trip. I remember laughing, but even then… my laughter didn’t feel as good as it felt around Mikey.
He was something else.
But I lost him, because I never really deserved to have him in the first place.
Gerard didn’t say anything but I could feel his eyes on me the whole time. “If I write Mikey a note, will you give it to him? I mean he probably won’t read it but…” I let myself trail off.
“Of course.” Gerard whispered.
I didn’t even hear him move but then he was wrapping his arms around me, but I wanted so badly for it to be Mikey… not Gerard. As I shook his arms tightened. My eyes started producing tears once again, which fell freely down my face. Gerard stroked my hair and tightly held me, while whispering things I couldn’t comprehend. I listened to the tone of his voice and tried so hard to make all of my hurt go away.
I’d never gone through something like this before.
It was… my first heartbreak.
And it hurt.