Frank meets the artist
I just want to assure you all though that I will continue to keep writing MCR fanfiction here just so long as there are always people who want to read it. MCR got me into my writing and I feel positive that this is not the end we will hear of them playing together, even if they come back under a different band name.
So for anyone who was worried that I will stop writing that isn't the case, and I hope you all continue to read my stories.
Much love guys,
When Frank awoke the first thing he noticed was that he wasn’t in the sea. In fact, he wasn’t wet at all. He had never felt so... dry. In fact, he hadn’t even ever been sure what dry felt like, but now he could feel it. And it was horrible.
“Ugh...” Frank groaned and rolled his head to the side, his eyes refusing to open. He felt sick, and the more aware of himself he became the more he realised his head was hurting an incredible amount. He felt as though there was an agonised throbbing in the back of his skull, and something pressing against his forehead but when he tried to raise his hand he felt as though his limbs were lead.
“J – Jamia...”
“Are you waking up?”
Frank stirred at the voice, his eyelids fluttering as he tried to place it. It was male but he didn’t recognise it. His heart began to race as he struggled to wake up properly and open his eyes, his body feeling strange to him. Something was just certainly not right.
“J – Jay...” He slurred, his voice sounding strange even to his own ears. He felt sick and drowsy, and his words were almost intelligible.
“Shh...” The male voice cooed softly, and Frank felt a presence beside him. Something warm and inviting, it didn’t feel like water. Even in his half conscious state he could tell he wasn’t in the sea anymore, but that just served to make his body even more reluctant to wake up. He didn’t want to open his eyes and see what trouble he had gotten himself into.
A soft, warm hand finally touched Frank’s forehead, brushing his hair back off his face and then skating down to trace a thumb along his cheekbone. Frank stirred a little more, parting his lips and sighing as he automatically turned his head to nuzzle against the hand. It felt nice against his cheek; he hadn’t felt such warmth before. Merpeople didn’t get warm like humans did, not that he was aware that he was being touched by a human.
“Mm... Who... Who’sat?” Frank finally managed to ask, his voice still horribly slurred but he could at least understand himself now even if the other person couldn’t. His eyelids fluttered as he forced himself to open them, managing to get them open just a crack at first but then slowly lift them higher.
For a moment Frank was blinded by the light, able to see nothing but white. He winced and squinted, groaning in pain as his head ached fiercely; but eventually the white began to glow and then it grew less bright, dimming down until he was just staring blankly at the ceiling above him.
“My name is Gerard.” The male voice responded, the hand on Frank’s cheek disappearing and then a face came into his view. Frank’s eyes widened slightly, his heart starting to race even more as his eyes focused to look at the man leaning over him. “How are you feeling? What’s your name? You were uh... naked when I found you so you didn’t have any ID on you or anything.”
Frank blinked slowly and just stared at the man, Gerard, as if he was crazy. Though his face was built the same as any merperson’s Frank could tell he was no merman. For one thing they were very obviously not in water; Frank still didn’t know what the white thing above him was. It couldn’t be the sky... But as well as that the man’s hair was just hanging forward, brushing against his cheeks like it wouldn’t do in water. And he didn’t even have gills on his neck.
“I...” Frank swallowed thickly, his throat dry and burning. He realised with a jolt in his stomach that this man must be a human and he felt panic overcome him. “I need to go.” He gasped, sitting up suddenly as if he had been electrocuted only to immediately pause and groan when his head span.
“Hey! Be careful.” Gerard gasped, quickly pushing Frank to lie on his back again. “You need to rest; you’ve hurt your head really bad. I was gonna take you to the hospital but I... I figured since you had no ID or anything I should try and take care of you first. I’m pretty good at first aid and stuff and I dunno, if I told them you were naked on the harbour they’d probably arrest you for indecency or something and I didn’t want to get you into trouble or anything.” Frank frowned and blinked stupidly at the man, getting the feeling he was rambling but he just didn’t have the strength to find his voice and tell him to stop talking.
Gerard was pacing by now, wringing his hands together and letting Frank get a better view of him now he wasn’t leaning right over him. He was still rambling about something to do with taking a first aid course at his school but Frank was too busy staring at his legs to pay any attention. He had never seen human legs in real life before and he was mesmerized. They were so... strange. They weren’t graceful at all, they looked heavy and clunky and the way they moved was extraordinary. Frank had never seen anything move like it.
“-So yeah, you shouldn’t have a concussion or anything but you should probably keep the bandage on for a couple days.” Frank shook his head to try and clear it and focus on Gerard’s words. He forced an uneasy smile, nodding and pretending to know what he was talking about though he had never heard the word concussion before and he wasn’t entirely sure what a bandage was.
“Oh uh... Okay.” He nodded, just staring at Gerard with wide eyes still. Now he was done staring at his legs he was busy drinking in the rest of him, staring in intrigue at the shape of his body and the way his clothes fit him. Frank knew what clothes were of course, they had been taught about them in their classes, but it was another thing he had only heard descriptions of. He found he quite liked them though now he was seeing them, the shirt especially. He liked how it was open at the top and exposed just a little of Gerard’s chest. There was something strangely exotic about it, more seductive than seeing merman with their chests constantly on show.
“Um... Are you okay?” Gerard asked slowly, quirking an eyebrow at Frank as he stared at him. “Maybe you should stay here for a while. Do you need me to call anyone for you?” He asked gently, walking closer to the bed again but hesitating when Frank immediately shied away from him. “I’m not gonna hurt you.” Gerard quickly assured him, holding his hands up in a sign of peace. There was something strange about the man in his bed, but he wanted to help him.
“I just... I...” Frank swallowed thickly, his voice coming out hoarse and unnatural sounding. He couldn’t think straight he was so thirsty and he looked at Gerard with imploring eyes. “I need water.”
“Oh! God, sorry, of course you do.” Gerard gasped, blushing and quickly hurrying across the room. Frank watched him somewhat dazed, realising for the first time that there was a window and a door and that they were in some sort of building. He didn’t quite know what to make of it, wondering if this was where the man lived. “I’ll be right back.” Gerard assured him before disappearing through the door, to where Frank didn’t know.
Once the human had gone Frank forced himself to sit up again, moving slower this time so as not to cause a second head rush. He managed to weakly push himself into a sitting position, resting his back against the wall behind him and his hands in his lap. He was still so drained and his head was pounding, making it difficult to think properly and assess the situation.
First, he realised, if he wasn’t in water and the human wasn’t freaking out about his body then he must no longer have his tail. The thought made Frank feel sick but when he glanced down he knew instantly that he was right, even if he had a blanket covering his legs. He was sat in some kind of bed, but it was all so different to back home or how he had imagined this place. The classes that taught them about humans had been basic, giving them just the knowledge they would need most since no one had ever been unfortunate enough to actually try to interact with one... And now Frank was way beyond that, he was sat in one of their houses and could see no way out yet. He was going to have to do much more than basic interaction. He was going to have to appear... normal.
Frank took a deep breath to try and steady his nerves, ignoring his dry mouth and throat for now and just concentrating on relaxing as he took hold of the blanket and shakily pushed it aside. When he uncovered his legs he gasped and quickly threw the blanket back over them, squeezing his eyes shut and counting to ten to calm back down.
Of course the whole point of him ever coming onto land was to get legs and reproduce so he shouldn’t have been so astounded. But to have his tail one moment and then wake up with these... things having not actually witnessed the transformation was just too much for him to take in. He didn’t even want to know what the genitals looked like; for now they were blissfully covered in a pair of black shorts he assumed the human must have given him.
Frank couldn’t find it in him to look at his legs again before Gerard returned, holding a glass of water and smiling gently at him. He had a timid air about him, as if he was frightened of Frank but Frank soon realised he was actually just anxious in case he scared him.
“Here you go.” Gerard said gently, passing the glass to Frank. “I’m sorry, I didn’t even think about how you’d be thirsty.” He chuckled apologetically, Frank forcing a smile and deciding not to mention he had been requesting water as in a large body of it so that he could submerge himself. But he supposed he ought to try drinking... it was something merpeople didn’t do but Frank knew all about humans and their different forms of sustenance. He was sure he could figure drinking out, and it wasnt like he could just go swimming and reveal his tail anyway.
“Thanks.” He finally sighed, raising the glass to his lips and slowly tilting it up. The first sip turned out to be a struggle and Frank ended up choking and spluttering as it tickled his throat. Gerard jumped into action and dashed over to thump Frank’s back for him, only serving to make Frank choke more as he panicked. He didn’t know why he was being hit but he assumed it must be some sort of human tradition and when he finally managed to stop coughing long enough to suck in a much needed breath Gerard’s thumping turned into a soothing rub.
“Wrong hole huh?” He asked with a soft chuckle, Frank nodding though he didn’t know what that meant. He was glad to take any excuse for his choking though so he didn’t have to reveal he had never drank anything before. “Drink some more, it’ll make you feel better.” Gerard assured him, Frank seriously doubting that though he didn’t dare disagree.
Hesitating, Frank tipped the glass up again and let the water pour down his throat. This time he was prepared for it and he soon found himself gulping down the entire contents of the glass without any trouble. Once it began to wash down his dry throat his eyes had closed in pleasure and he could swear he had never felt anything more blissful. The aching and the burning were immediately soothed, disappearing as if it had never even been there and Frank put down the empty glass with a satisfied intake of air.
“Better?” Gerard smiled, biting his lip when Frank nodded and thanked him again quietly. Now that he had drank something he sounded more like his old self and Gerard smiled as he dared to sit down on the edge of the bed. “So uh... What’s your name?” He asked softly, still knowing nothing about Frank.
“Hm? Oh my name?” Frank didn’t know why he was so surprised to hear the question, after all he knew Gerard’s. But something felt wrong about giving out his name, as if it was forbidden.
“Yeah... I... Like I said, you had no ID or anything...” Gerard trailed off, wondering if he had done something wrong. “I mean you don’t have to tell me just... I’d like to be able to call you something.” He chuckled, frowning slightly and just finding this man incredibly strange. Frank just stared back at him as if he was uncertain for a long moment, before finally sighing and relenting.
“My name is Frank.” He said quietly, glancing about the room before meeting Gerard’s gaze again. “How did I get here?” He asked quietly, just feeling confused and disorientated still. In the back of his mind he kept thinking about Jamia and wondering if she was in this place too somewhere. “My friend... Jamia... Is she here?”
“Jamia?” Gerard repeated, his brows knitting together in confusion. “No I’m sorry, I don’t know who that is. Do you know her number? I could give her a call for you? Or anyone for that matter.” He quickly offered, eager to move Frank on back to wherever he lived. Gerard wasn’t the most social person at the best of time, but he was especially social-phobic when it came to strangers. But he had simply not known what else to do when he found Frank on the harbour.
“Her... Number?” Frank blushed, not sure what Gerard meant but he already knew there was no way Gerard would be able to find her if he hadn’t seen her already. “No I uh, I don’t have anyone’s number.”
“Oh...” Gerard frowned, biting his lip and trying to think of ways to be helpful. “Well do you live near here? I could give you a ride home.” He offered but Frank’s face was less than inspiring.
“I don’t live here.” He responded flatly, Gerard raising his eyebrows at him. “I live... Um... Somewhere else.” Frank blushed and turned his face away, not wanting to reveal too much. He didn’t know what to say or do, he was just in this man’s house and he now needed to think of a way to leave without coming across as strange. “So how did you get me here anyway?” He quickly asked, trying to change the subject.
“Oh. I found you on the harbour.” Gerard quickly explained, letting Frank change the subject easily since he felt the guy probably deserved to know what had happened anyway. He looked pretty confused. “I was up early this morning and went to take a walk down the seafront. It was only about five am so no one was around yet. I struggle to sleep sometimes ya see.” Gerard explained, sheepishly rubbing the back of his neck.
“There was a storm all night – well I guess you know that. But it had stopped by then and I wanted see what damage it had done to the harbour and stuff. I’m like... I’m kinda like an artist so I wondered if it would give me inspiration.” Gerard blushed at the admission, always finding it strange to admit his profession. He felt like it made him sound arrogant or pompous when in fact he spent most days eating gone off food for lack of money, and staring at black canvases for lack of ideas.
“Anyway, I was just walking down the harbour and I saw you under a bench. You were in a pretty bad way, you had blood all around your head and you were naked, I thought for a second you were dead.” Gerard blushed slightly, looking at Frank with concerned hazel eyes. “But when I checked your pulse and stuff and found you were okay I picked you up and carried you back to my car. Like I said before, I was going to take you to hospital but when I realised the cut on your head wasn’t too bad I decided to take care of you myself in case you got into trouble or something... What were you doing out there? Were you drunk last night?” Gerard had been trying all morning to come up with an explanation to Frank’s presence beneath the bench and could come up with only one answer – alcohol.
“Drunk?” Frank repeated, shaking his head slowly, looking slightly dazed. “No I wasn’t drunk.” He sighed, knowing the word well. Sailors were well known to be drunk often, but Frank had never even drank anything until the glass of water Gerard had given him, let alone alcohol.
“Then what happened?” Gerard asked gently, looking nervously at the younger man. He began to wonder if he had been attacked or something, whether he had put himself in danger by bringing him into his apartment. He knew that New Jersey had some mob activity but he had never imagined he’d get involved in any of it.
“I was caught in the storm.” Frank sighed as if that explained everything and just confusing Gerard further. “I was carried by a wave and I guess it threw me beneath the bench. I must have banged my head on the ground.” He sighed, trying to remember the night before but his most vivid memory was just of when he had been desperately searching for Jamia. “My friend was with me, I need to go and find her.”
“Hey.” Gerard sighed, holding his hand up to stop Frank from trying to get out of bed. “What were you doing in the water anyway? That storm was crazy last night, and you’re not allowed to swim in the harbour.” He frowned, not wanting to lecture Frank on it; it wasn’t like he was the coastguard or something but he just found it hard to believe anyone would be foolish enough to swim in the harbour during a storm.
“We were just...” Frank bit his lip, not sure how to explain it. “We didn’t realise that there was going to be a storm. It came on us suddenly.” He muttered, Gerard sighing as he looked at him.
“Well... Either way you shouldn’t have been swimming there. But I guess there’s nothing we can do about it now.” He said gently, it obvious Frank was worried about his friend and didn’t really want to talk about what they had been doing. Gerard supposed it was probably for the best too, if they had been swimming naked.
“Listen, if your friend was found in any state similar to yours then it’d probably be on the news and I haven’t seen anything. But I can call all the local hospitals and police stations to see if they’ve got her if you want.” He offered, Frank looking alarmed at that and immediately shaking his head.
The classes they had took had explained about the emergency services and what they could do if they needed their help. They had all been warned to try not to approach them though. They would ask lots of questions that they simply wouldnt have the answers to, and if they had to see a doctor and blood was taken they jeopardised the whole race. They didn’t know if their blood was different to a humans, but they didn’t want to find out by causing a sensation. Frank knew that the best thing he could do was just return to the sea as quickly as possible and get a search party together there. The merpeople who had all been on land before could then come and search for Jamia, assuming she hadn’t already made it back home.
“No no, it’s fine.” Frank quickly assured Gerard, blushing slightly. “I’m sure she’s fine.” He lied, Gerard looking unconvinced though he didn’t push it.
“Well... Okay.” He said slowly, not knowing what to do now. Frank didn’t want help finding his friend, he didn’t want to reveal where he lived and he didn’t know a way of contacting anyone he knew. Gerard got the feeling Frank wasn’t everything he was letting him believe. He got the distinct impression that he actually didn’t know where he was or where he was from or even know anyone who could help him. Perhaps he was an orphan.
“So um... Who are your parents?” Gerard asked, Frank shrugging on instinct, staring down at the duvet where he was picking at a thread.
“I don’t know.” He said simply, confirming Gerard’s fears though Frank didn’t know it himself. He didn’t elaborate, knowing that humans were raised by the two people who conceived them, and that if he mentioned that where he was from babies were raised by the community as a whole then it would just lead to more questions.
“Look,” Frank sighed, looking up to meet Gerard’s gaze again. “Thanks for helping me. I really appreciate it but I should get going now.” He said softly, Gerard looking somewhat alarmed at that.
“Well... I can’t stop you but... I don’t know. I think you need to rest a little more.” He said anxiously. He was sure Frank didn’t have concussion but knowing he had no one to keep an eye on him made him feel responsible for it. “If you have nowhere to stay you should just stay here a couple days, I really don’t mind.”
“Oh no, I couldn’t do that.” Frank said instantly, knowing he just needed to get into the sea again but at the same time feeling touched at the offer. He had always heard about how destructive humans were; how they were cruel, stupid creatures that ruined their world and the sea. He had never imagined one would save his life and then try so hard to help him. It just made him even more curious about them and he sort of wished he could stay and learn more.
“I honestly wouldn’t mind.” Gerard promised Frank again, blushing slightly. He didn’t know why he was so eager for the younger man to agree to stay. He was worried about him but he got the feeling that wasn’t all of it... He was just intrigued by him. Nothing interesting ever happened to Gerard and he was finding it strangely easy to relax with Frank in his home and he wanted to get to know about him. “I wouldn’t feel comfortable knowing you’re out there all on your own when you’re hurt.” He added gently but Frank shook his head.
“Don’t worry about me, I feel fine.” He promised, pushing the covers back to move out of bed but hesitating when he saw his legs again. They really were remarkable... Frank had thought them ugly for a while, but now he looked at them again he just found them... odd. “I just... Need to um...” Frank slowly slid forward, letting his feet touch the carpet and biting his lip at the sensation of the soft fabric against the soles of his feet.
“Need to just...?” Gerard trailed off, watching Frank closely and curiously. He really was strange, Gerard couldn’t work him out. He watched quietly as Frank ever so slowly pushed himself to his feet and took a shaky step forward, immediately falling into a heap on the floor.
“Frank! Oh God are you okay?” Gerard gasped, springing to his feet and quickly helping Frank get up. “You must have hit your head harder than I thought, or do your legs hurt? Can you walk?” Gerard asked anxiously, practically lifting Frank up as the younger man clutched his arms and used him as a crutch to get to his feet again. His legs were wobbling like a baby trying to walk for the first time and he blushed as he gripped Gerard’s arms tight.
“I – I’m sorry, I just... Uh, I just need a minute.” Frank coughed, embarrassed to be making a fool of himself. He hadn’t expected walking to be difficult, Gerard made it look so easy.
“I think you really just need to rest.” Gerard said gently, moving Frank easily back to the bed whilst he was so unsteady on his feet. He lay him back down amongst the pillows and pulled the covers over him, sighing as he looked at him. “Look, this is my spare room okay. You won’t be in my way, I have my own bed I can sleep in, and you’re obviously not in a good way. Please just stay and get your strength back, even if you leave tomorrow I’d just feel much better if you stayed tonight.” He sighed, Frank groaning and shaking his head.
“I can’t. I need to go I –”
“Frank please.” Gerard sighed, looking at Frank with open, concerned eyes and Frank just found himself entranced by them. He knew he needed to leave, he had to find Jamia and get back into the sea and yet... He supposed Gerard had a point. He couldn’t even walk, he wasn’t going to get very far if he had to drag himself by the hands like a fish out of water.
“I... Alright.” He whispered, his heart missing a beat but Gerard’s warm smile made him feel a little better. “But just tonight.” Frank warned, the artist nodding.
“I can live with that.” He smiled, squeezing Frank’s shoulder in a friendly gesture. “Now then, I haven’t eaten yet today and I’m pretty hungry. I’ll make us some breakfast, you just stay here and rest okay?” He smiled, Frank nodding with still pink cheeks and just not knowing what to say as Gerard smiled and turned, leaving the room once more.
Once he was left alone Frank hesitated for a few seconds before he threw the covers back and looked curiously at his legs. Since he couldn’t walk on them yet he wanted to at least look at them and try and figure out how they worked.
They were a little different to how he had imagined them. He had known they would look like this, but he hadn’t thought of the little details. Like how he could see tendons at the back of his knee and on his foot when he flexed different muscles. He hadn’t known he would be able to wiggle his toes like he could, and he had had no idea that legs had hair. He stroked his hand down his calf, feeling the soft, short hairs and tugging at a few. He gasped at the pain, finding them to be more sensitive than the hairs on his head and he winced as he rubbed the pain away. It was strange not having his tail anymore, and he did miss it already, but at the same time having legs felt almost natural.
Frank moved his hands over his knees and for a moment he just stared at them resting on the joints. He began to frown as he wondered how it was merpeople had come to exist. Legs and arms just seemed to go together, hands and feet looked almost similar... But his tail looked like it belonged on a fish, and his torso to a man. He had never questioned it before, but now he couldn’t help but wonder how strange it seemed. No wonder humans had always been alarmed whenever they had seen merpeople back in the old days.
Frank sighed and moved his hands away, using them to push his body so that his legs dangled over the edge of the bed and his feet touched the floor again. He didn’t try to stand up straight away, but just took a moment to figure out how his knees and ankles worked, twisting his feet about and brushing them across the carpet. He found he quite like the texture of it on his soles and he smiled as he wiggled his toes and buried them in the plush fabric. He didn’t know how Gerard would take to make breakfast and he so he moved on quickly.
Frank lifted one leg up high, bending the knee and then straightening it again before doing the same to his other leg. He flexed the muscles and tried to locate each one and figure out what he could do before he planted his feet on the floor and slowly rose up. He touched the bed post to support himself as he got up, managing to stand easily enough but he wasn’t sure how easy walking would be.
At first Frank simply bent his knees and performed squats whilst holding onto the bedpost. He was wobbly at first, but the more he did them the stronger he felt. When he stopped he was out of breath, but he felt like he could use his legs more at least. He continued to grip the bedpost for support as he took a small step forward, testing the way it felt. Another step soon followed, shaky and uncertain but he didn’t fall.
Frank glanced at the bedpost he was holding onto, seeing that if he took another step he wouldn’t be able to reach it anymore and so he slowly removed his hand from it as he was standing upright. He faced forward again, taking a deep breath and taking another, larger a step forward.
Frank felt shaky and unbalanced on his feet, but he managed to walk unsteadily forward. He grinned and picked up his pace, finding it much easier as he got into his stride. Soon enough he was walking round the room in circles, learning how to use his legs and finding he quite enjoyed walking. It certainly felt like more effort than swimming in some respects, and yet the novelty of it made him enjoy himself.
“What are you doing?” Frank gasped and jumped, turning to find Gerard watching him from the doorway. He was holding two plates of pancakes and he quirked an eyebrow at Frank. “You should be resting.” He said gently, Frank blushing fiercely as he tried to come up with a good excuse for being out of bed and wandering around the room.
“I uh, I was just. I was... Toilet.” He finally gasped, Gerard raising his eyebrows at him. “I uh, I need the toilet.” Frank blushed, hoping he had got that right. He had been told his human body would expel toxins in different ways and that humans used the toilet since it wasn’t acceptable to defecate in the street. Frank didn’t know if they had them in their houses though.
“Oh right! Sure, the bathroom is just out here.” Gerard smiled, turning and leading the way out the room. Frank breathed a sigh of relief and followed him carefully, walking slowly so he could keep track of whether he was going to fall or not. He managed to make it out of the room with ease, Gerard indicating a door across the living room.
“Shall we eat in the kitchen then, since you’re up?” He smiled, lifting the plates slightly to indicate the food and Frank nodded absently over his shoulder, forcing a smile before disappearing through the door to the bathroom.
Once inside Frank closed the door and leant against it, closing his eyes and taking a deep breath. He was going to have to work much harder to try and come across as normal. He guessed he would just have to observe Gerard closely whilst he was here to see how he acted and the things he said and then just try to replicate that.
Frank sighed and looked about the bathroom with intrigued eyes, looking at the different fittings and raising his eyebrows. He hadn’t been told much about the inside of human houses since it hadn’t been important, but he knew what the toilet was at least. He wondered whether he should to try to use it or not, feeling a pressure in his abdomen he had put down to his fall but he supposed he could try to urinate. It would give him an excuse to see what his genitals looked like at least.
Feeling uneasy Frank pushed the shorts he was wearing down his legs, hesitating a moment before leaning over and looking down. He wrinkled his nose up in disgust at the sight of the... thing, hanging between his legs. He had been told what to expect, how it should look and how to use it but that didn’t mean it wasn’t ugly. Frank wondered how females could be attracted to this and turned to the mirror, tiptoeing up to look at the reflection of it and finding it didn’t look that much better. He much preferred his tail where it was just smooth. He was soon distracted by the rest of him though. His whole body seemed strange with the legs attached... His skin seemed more tanned, and now the gills on his neck were also gone he just looked... human. He had some white fabric wrapped around his head and he murmured quietly to himself as he touched it.
“Bandage...” That was what Gerard had called it. He could work out its function easily enough, the merpeople used seaweed to bind wounds and he supposed this was for the same reason.
Sighing Frank turned to face the toilet and shuffled over to it, moving his hand away from his forehead as he went. He wasn’t sure how to pee but he had been told the basics though he had never expected to be in his human body so long that he would need to know this. Of course merpeople defecated too, but they did it like fish... Fish didn’t use toilets or... penises.
Frank took a long time in the bathroom, figuring out how to aim and not spray all over the toilet seat. He didn’t like touching his penis at first, it felt strange and alien and like it shouldn’t be a part of his body. But he did feel much better once he was done and washing his hands. The pressure in his abdomen had gone and he felt a little more confident in himself. This body wasn’t so hard to figure out... He just needed a little time was all.
When Frank stepped out of the bathroom Gerard was sat at the kitchen table looking a little anxious. He smiled when Frank walked in and gestured for him to sit down, sliding one of the plates over to him.
“Are you okay?” He asked softly. Frank had took a long time in the bathroom and Gerard was worried there was something really wrong. Frank only smiled and nodded though and he did seem much better as he picked up one of the pancakes with his hand. Gerard quirked an eyebrow and looked at Frank examining the pancake.
“They’re uh... banana ones. I don’t know if you like that.” He offered quietly, holding his own cutlery ready to tuck in but he was more interested in watching Frank practically molest his pancake.
“They’re a strange texture...” He whispered and Gerard got the feeling he was talking mostly to himself. He ran his fingers over the pancake before raising it slowly to his mouth. “I’ve never had banana before...” He said thoughtfully, Gerard looking at him in surprise.
“Really?” He asked in disbelief as Frank bit into his pancake, ignoring the cutlery Gerard had laid out for him. He watched as Frank chewed thoughtfully on the pancake, his expression changing from curiosity to utter delight and he sighed in satisfaction once he had swallowed the mouthful. “Do you like them?” Gerard asked, smiling a little as Frank nodded with a wide, genuine grin.
“It’s the nicest thing I’ve ever tasted!” He said enthusiastically causing Gerard to laugh softly. He found that hard to believe too but then he wasn’t really sure what to think of anything Frank said. It was like he had never been to America before or something.
“Well they’re okay I guess...” Gerard said modestly, smiling as he tucked into his own using his knife and fork. Frank continued to eat using his hands but Gerard didn’t really mind. “Sorry this place is a bit of a mess by the way, I haven’t long moved in.” He blushed. It wasn’t really a lie, he had moved in only a month ago. That was plenty of time to have unpacked but he was still mostly living out of boxes. He couldn’t even blame hard work for it, he had been suffering artists block for a long time and had done hardly any work. And his bank account was really feeling it...
“Hm? Oh, you mean all houses don’t look like this?” Frank asked, looking about at the clutter lying around, the open boxes against the walls and the general mess. There were pots of dirty water and paint brushes all around, along with canvases half finished or still completely blank. Gerard blushed and shook his head at Frank’s question, looking at him like he was crazy.
“Uh... No. No not that I know of.” He chuckled, cocking his head to the side. He couldn’t tell if Frank was being genuine or not. How could anyone be like him? Yet he didn’t seem to be mocking Gerard or acting, he just seemed like a genuinely oblivious person.
“So you never told me, where do you come from?” He asked curiously when Frank didn’t say anything else. He was eating his pancakes with gusto which made Gerard feel a little better at least. People didn’t often compliment his cooking... but then he couldn’t actually remember the last time he had ever cooked for anyone. He could barely afford to cook for himself.
“Oh um...” Frank blushed and shrugged, eating the last of his pancake and smiling curiously when Gerard slid a mug of black liquid over to him.
“I have milk and sugar too, but I didn’t know how you take your coffee.” Gerard quickly explained, Frank smiling at him and shrugging. He didn’t know how he took his coffee either, he’d never tried it. He picked up the mug, surprised to feel that it was warm, and slowly took a sip of the liquid. Immediately he wrinkled his nose up in disgust, putting the cup down and pushing it away.
“Or I... Have tea if you prefer...” Gerard said softly, staring at Frank with wide eyes. He just couldn’t work the guy out, but he found he sort of liked him. He was interesting if a little strange. But then Gerard felt like he hadn’t had a man half naked in his house since he was sixteen so that was probably something to do with it.
“I... No, this is fine.” Frank coughed in regards to the coffee, determined to be normal and if Gerard had expected him to like it then clearly coffee was a normal thing to enjoy. He picked the cup up again and gave it another try, finding it wasn’t so bad now he was expecting it. “It’s nice, thank you.” He lied, Gerard smirking a little fondly at him and shaking his head.
“Okay. Well, you were just telling me where you were from...” He coaxed causing Frank to blush again.
“Oh um. I’m from...” Frank bit his lip, not knowing what to say. He didn’t know any of the names of the surrounding areas, and he couldn’t very well tell Gerard the truth. “I’m just from some like... little town.” He finally muttered, it not entirely a lie. Gerard ‘hmm’d softly, taking the hint that Frank didn’t want to tell him the truth so he dropped it.
“And you really don’t have any place to stay?” He asked, Frank shrugging and shaking his head.
“It doesn’t matter though. I don’t need one.” He said softly, knowing that if he told Gerard he would go home soon then Gerard would want to know where home was. Or offer to take him.
“Well of course you need a place to stay.” Gerard gasped, sitting up straighter from where he’d been leaning closer to Frank. “You know I mean it, you can stay here as long as you like.”
“Thank you but I really don’t think it will be necessary.” Frank said slowly, though the offer was seeming more alluring every time Gerard gave it. Sitting at the table after coming to grips with his new body at least slightly, and having tasted human food for the first time and finding it to be utterly magical; Frank just didn’t want to leave anymore. He was even forgetting Jamia, his worry for her falling to the back of his mind as he gazed at Gerard and found he just never wanted to look away. He was so interesting to look at... Handsome really. Frank could feel a strange sensation in his gut, and he found whenever Gerard leant closer the sensation got stronger.
“Well... We’ll see how you feel tomorrow.” Gerard sighed, deciding to drop that for now. “Why don’t you tell me a little about yourself instead.” He smiled, just wanting to learn at least something about this strange man. He could understand if Frank didn’t want to open up to him, but he wanted to know at least a little more than just his name.
“Oh, well... There isn’t much to tell.” Frank shrugged, biting his lip. “Why don’t you tell me about yourself first.” He suggested, deciding he’d be most convincing if he framed his answer based off the one Gerard gave first. Then he’d have a better idea of how these sorts of questions were handled by humans.
“Me?” Gerard blushed slightly, never one to talk much about himself but he supposed if he didn’t then it would just give Frank more reason to remain closed to him. “Well... Let me see. I’m... an artist.” He chuckled, stating the obvious concerning all the art supplies strewn around. “I moved here a month ago. I used to live a lot further inland, but I moved here to be close to the sea.”
“You like the sea?” Frank interrupted, grinning at Gerard and taking much more interest in him all of a sudden.
“Yeah I...Yeah I like the sea.” Gerard chuckled, smiling curiously at Frank. It was the most lively he had seen him yet and he found it endearing. “Do you?”
“I love it!” Frank beamed, thrilled to hear Gerard liked it too. “So you came here to be closer to it? That’s really nice. I don’t think I could live anywhere where I wasn’t close to it.” He smiled, Gerard nodding slowly as he gazed curiously at Frank. That at least told him that Frank had always lived by the sea, or at least always wanted to.
“Well... I liked where I lived before too. But I thought maybe living here might help give me inspiration for my art ya know?” He shrugged, sighing as he looked around at the many blank or ruined canvases and feeling a stirring of guilt. He had spent his savings on moving to this apartment, convinced he’d be fine but he just couldn’t paint anything. It was like all motivation had gone. “As it is though I’m not getting much.”
“Oh...” Frank bit his lip, sensing the sadness in Gerard’s voice and feeling his chest hurt to hear it. “Well... I’m sure something will motivate you soon. I always thought the sea was incredibly beautiful, and if you think about it there’s so much in it that you could use for inspiration if you’d only let yourself believe in it.” He sighed, blushing at Gerard’s intrigued gaze and realising he had said too much. “Or... I don’t know. Maybe not.” He tried to back track, Gerard shaking his head as he chuckled.
“No you’re right.” He smiled, finding Frank’s passion for the ocean incredibly attractive. He spoke the way Gerard had thought he would when he got here, only to find his walks along the harbour only served to tire him out and that looking out past the boats and to the sea beyond only made him feel more lonely than ever. “You know when I was kid, I used to love coming to the sea. I used to go swimming to try and find mermaids, and would get really disappointed whenever I didn’t.” Gerard chuckled but blushed slightly over a story he now thought to be embarrassing. He wasn’t quite sure why he was telling Frank, he just supposed he trusted him not to make fun of him since he was so in love with the sea himself.
“Really?” Frank grinned, knowing that Gerard probably didn’t believe in mermaids anymore like all humans did but it was still sweet to hear he once did. “Why don’t you paint mermaids?” He suggested, causing the artist to blush and laugh softly, shaking his head.
“No, no... I... I don’t think anyone would want to buy paintings of mermaids.” He chuckled, making Frank frown.
“Why not?” He asked, hoping humans really weren’t that bad. He had thought them to be heartless, idiot creatures but Gerard was making him question that. But if people didn’t like mermaids then he wasn’t sure he could hold onto that belief. “Mermaids are beautiful. Don’t people like beautiful things?”
“Well sure.” Gerard blushed, surprised at how defensive Frank got. “But... I dunno. I guess I just never considered it before. I guess I could.” He said softly, wanting to appease the man he had clearly offended. “I doubt I’d do them justice though... I always imagined them to be so incredibly beautiful, I’m not sure I’d be able to make them look right.”
“You won’t know if you don’t try.” Frank pointed out, smiling again and Gerard relaxed when he saw he had managed to appease the situation. “I could help you if you like. I’m... something of an expert when it comes to mermaids.” Frank smirked, Gerard raising his eyebrows at him but smirking back.
“Oh really?” He chuckled, watching as Frank got to his feet and nodded, stretching his arms above his head and making Gerard’s mouth run dry to see all those softly toned muscles stretching beneath soft tanned skin. He had swimmers muscles, Gerard could tell, and part of him just wanted to pin him down and run his tongue all over them but he tried to push that thought away. Frank probably wasn’t even gay, and if he was that didn’t change the fact that Gerard had only known him all of one hour.
“What makes you such an expert?” He asked as casually as he could, downing the rest of his coffee and trying to get his thoughts back onto a less sexual track.
“Hm...” Frank shrugged, not sure how to answer that. “I guess you could say I just... hear a few things.” He shrugged, Gerard cocking his head to the side curiously and chuckling as Frank grinned at him and offered him his hand. “Come on! I wanna help you paint.” He beamed, it not being something he had ever done before but he understood the basics and he wanted to try.
Gerard couldn’t help but laugh as he got to his feet with a nod, letting Frank take his hand and lead him to the living room where his canvases were all set up. He didn’t know much about Frank still, and he still found him bizarre, but he found himself hoping even more that he would stay a few days. It had been a long time since Gerard had had company, and he had always been of the opinion that was because he didn’t like it. But Frank had only been in his apartment since that morning and already the thought of him leaving made his heart sink with disappointment.