"Gerard knew what he had found was a brand new drug..."
Chapter 17 – Not Gonna Crack
It was the crisp, new morning when Frank reopened his eyes again. Sunlight peered through the blinds and rested on his bed. Once awake enough to think, he brushed away crusts from the corners of his eyes. He licked his lips to make the dry feeling go away. When he yawned, he felt the dried drool near his mouth crack slightly. Running a palm through his messy hair, he could only be thankful to the fact that nobody saw him while he was in this hideous state. He giggled at himself for being feminine enough to care and sat up. Clicking his tongue a few times, he attempted to identify the flavor in his mouth. It was not the familiar, stinky morning breath; it was more… salty. Upon recognizing the taste of tears, his eyes stretched wide.
How could he have forgotten? Where the hell was Gerard? Panicking, he felt around the mattress, trying to locate a lump of flesh that would tell him Gerard was still here. The comforter flew off the bed as Frank freaked out even more. He wasn’t there! Letting out a worried groan, the small guitarist buried his head into his hands. Had he failed in saving his friend, failed in what he’d promised just last night? He didn’t know if he could take that. Helplessly, he lifted his head and scanned the room. The singer was nowhere in sight. He felt worthless. Gerard was going to get worse, and it was all Frank’s fault for not being able to stop him. Just when all hope had died, a heroic sound echoed throughout the room: the flush of a toilet.
A few suspenseful seconds later, Gerard stepped into view. Frank sighed with relief and took the opportunity to restore his breathing to a normal rate. His heart sped up again when Gerard gave him a small smile. Frank blushed and then blushed some more because he blushed. The situation he was in reminded him of his high school days. It sure was awkward enough. Scratching the back of his head, he tried to think of something to say. The only thought in his mind was how ugly he must look to Gerard at that moment. He lifted up his head to stare at the taller man. Gerard looked so... perfect today even though he only wore boxers and a shirt. Or maybe he looked perfect because he only wore boxers and a shirt. Frank blushed again. Oh the things he could think.
On the opposite side of the room, Gerard also struggled to form words. He didn’t want to bring up the conversation they had postponed for today morning, not now when the atmosphere was so serene. The peaceful air didn’t deserve to be slashed at with angry shouting. He was sure that was what they would end up doing if the topic of drugs arose. He didn’t want to lose Frank’s love so soon after he’d discovered it. Biting his lip, he approached Frank and sat down on the bed. He had hoped this would help him start talking but instead, it made him nervous. Clearing his throat didn’t seem to be a good solution either, because it caused him to break into a fit of coughs.
Frank spoke when Gerard finally settled down, “Um...do you wanna go get breakfast?”
“Sure,” said Gerard, drawling out the word. He wasn’t feeling particularly hungry, but he’d do anything for this chat to remain light and casual.
Frank didn’t get off the bed just yet. His eyes had started to trace over the multiple lacerations down Gerard’s arm. They looked redder...fresher... He forced his eyes away and sighed. Relief wasn’t what left his lungs this time. Hesitantly, he looked up at Gerard’s face. It was troubled, as it almost always was these days. Even when he smiled, it wasn’t a smile. Frank hated it. Nervously, he reached forward and used a shaky finger to follow the trails down Gerard’s arm. The other man bit back a painful whimper.
“Why do you keep doing that? Doesn’t it hurt?”
Gerard shrugged and broke eye contact with Frank. He had a feeling this exchange wouldn’t end well; it never did. He folded his arm so that his cuts were hidden. Out of sight, but not so much out of mind. He could still feel them stinging him, reminding him. He wanted them to disappear. Quite ironically, he also wanted that remainder of pain. He deserved it for...for just being him. He wished he was somebody else. Someone normal who had the capability to be happy without fucking it up for himself...someone like Frank. Through the corner of his eye, he stole glances at his friend. The little man had his chin resting on his palm and he looked lost in thought; perplexed, even. Gerard smiled with half his mouth continuing to frown. Frankie was so perfect. Perfection like his didn’t deserve to be contaminated by ugliness like Gerard’s.
His mind drifted off to wonder what the guitarist’s life would be like without him. Frank would probably be cheerful a lot more, since he didn’t have to worry so much. He would probably have another best friend; one who would hang out with him and talk to him about normal things, like movies...or food. Frank would probably have a bee-yoo-ti-ful girlfriend, who always gave him light kisses on the cheek; who didn’t ruin her life purposely; who could smile without feeling guilty about it. But instead, he was stuck with Gerard Way; the depressed, alcoholic, good-for-nothing, druggy. Gerard sighed yearningly. He hated that he always made himself depressed, but it almost seemed like a subconscious action. Thus, the scabs which decorated his arm.
Frank stared at Gerard’s head; it wouldn’t turn to face him. His friend was embarrassed or something. He didn’t even bother to wonder why. Gerard’s emotions were too complicated for him to comprehend. Slowly, he leaned forward and touched the other man’s cheek.
“Gee, you said we’d talk about this in the morning...” he urged, “Come on, we have to at some point.”
“The later the better,” Gerard mumbled through pursed lips.
Frank moved closer and wrapped his arms around Gerard in a sideways hug, “I said I’d help you, but I can’t if you don’t tell me anything.”
Gerard moved his lips to meet Frank’s and closed his eyes for a moment. There, in the warmth and comfort, he felt good. He felt on top of the world. He slid his mouth away and broke their embrace. Immediately, he lost the sensation. Now, he felt like he’d fallen off the top of the world. Gerard didn’t like the sudden change. His hand wandered around aimlessly until it found Frank’s. He could manage a smile, to his own surprise. There was no doubt about it; Frank was magical. Gerard was willing to die for him fifty times over. He was willing to rip out his heart and all its contents, if Frank would promise to stay by his side forever...and even otherwise.
Gerard opened his mouth and found that his upper lip was quivering. He swallowed the emptiness in his throat and took a pause from his silence, “Uh...I pretty much started this,” he gestured towards his arm, “...because Bert told me it helped if I ever got too high and well, y’know, acted like a bastard...and he’s right. It feels kinda good.” His hand felt choked by Frank’s fingers; the grip was too tight. He winced and tried to pull away, “Frank, that hurts, let me go.”
Frank loosened his grasp, but only slightly, “That fucking asshole...how can you even...? Well, maybe he’s right, I don’t know. But if you didn’t get high at all, there would be no problem.” Frank frowned when Gerard said nothing. “Right, Gee?
Gerard fiddled his thumbs and looked down, “But I have to.” He feared what Frank would say in response. It would be something logical, something that made perfect sense. Logic wasn’t what he wanted, though...because logic had nothing to do with getting high.
Frank scooted closer to his friend, “You have to? It’s a choice. It’s like deciding what to wear in the morning...only more important. Look, you say crack makes you feel better but why did you even start feeling bad in the first place?”
The singer’s jaw dropped and then snapped shut. Why did he feel bad? It was such a simple question and yet, it had no answer. His eyebrows furrowed. He tried to think back to the time he first got high; that was probably when he felt the worst. It hurt his brain to go that far back into his memory archives. He could vaguely recall that it was dark...he was maybe, around twenty at the time. His drug dealer at the time was an old guy. But maybe he just seemed old because Gerard was young...and kind of stupid too. Gerard sighed. He couldn’t remember anything clearly enough to form a reply to Frank’s question.
“I don’t know,” he whispered.
Frank looked worried, but said nothing. Gerard took time to, once again, obsess over how adorable Frankie was. His stomach twisted up into multiple knots. It wasn’t just that Frank was too good for him anymore. He was getting a little envious. Wasn’t it twisted? He was jealous of one of the only people in the world who still loved him. It was as if he felt no gratitude. He was such a pathetic little human being. He stared at Frank wistfully and sighed.
“What’re you thinking about?” Frank asked softly.
Gerard tilted his head, contemplating whether to tell the whole truth or not. He finally settled for golden medium, “About how cute you are...” he smiled crookedly when Frank’s cheeks turned red. The shorter man looked so happy. Then, of course, Gerard had to ruin the moment by muttering under his breath, “It’s so fucking unfair.”
Frank’s thin eyebrows came together, as close as possible, “What do you mean? What’s unfair?”
“Everything,” Gerard blurted. He couldn’t stop his mouth from moving, “I know you’ll get mad, but fuck it, I don’t even care! You...you’re so...you’re so perfect! And I’m not. I’m so ugly and stupid and useless. It’s really fucked up that I think that, I know...I guess that’s why I like getting high. I feel like I can do anything. I feel like I’m you...” he paused. His breathing was growing erratic as he felt his eyes ready to explode with tears. “Do you really want to take that feeling away from me? I mean, if you did, I’d basically die. But that’s okay, if it’ll make you happy. I’d do anything for you.”
Frank couldn’t decide what to say. A part of him was furious that Gerard brought up the “perfect” conversation again. Still, he couldn’t help but be a little flattered. Gerard was just so sweet; he probably didn’t even realize how sweet he was. And then there was the main problem, the “I’m so ugly” statement that Gerard had uttered, so ignorantly. Didn’t he know how amazing he was?
Frank made up his mind, “Gee, I love you... I think you’re one of the smartest, most talented people I’ve ever met in my entire life. You need to stop hating yourself so much. I think, if you did, you wouldn’t depend on drugs so much.”
“I can’t stop,” Gerard moaned, “I know I need to, Frankie. But I can’t, I just do it...I just make myself miserable...and I’m making you miserable. I’m screwing up everyone with this crap. I should just die. Things would be so much—”
“No!” Frank gripped Gerard’s wrists, “Look, everyone feels crappy at one point. Everyone feels like they’re the most useless piece of shit on the planet. Hell, I feel like that a whole fucking lot. You know what, though? I’m not. And neither are you. Because, well, do you know how many people we’re helping with this band? A lot. If you fuck yourself up, if you kill yourself, what are the fans gonna think? They’ll think, Hey, Gerard didn’t face his problems, he just killed himself! And then they’re gonna kill themselves and then...I don’t really know! But do you want that, Gee? Do you want our fans to kill themselves?”
“N-no...” came a muffled response.
By now, Gerard’s face had crumpled into a soggy mess. He could only cough out incoherent sentences, which didn’t even sound like they were spoken in English. Automatically, Frank pulled him close and kissed the side of his head. Gerard squoze the smaller man tightly and sobbed harder. But the tears weren’t hot and angry, nor were they filled with sorrow. They were, in a way, tears of joy. Gerard felt so relieved, after a long time. He knew his problems weren’t completely solved; life would be too easy if they were. However, his head didn’t feel so heavy anymore, now that Frank knew what was inside it. As he clutched his friend, his best friend, and maybe his boyfriend, he knew what he’d found was a brand new drug. And that drug was Frank.
More Nirvana references, and a Dr. Seuss reference too...I bet no one caught that one.
I'm going out of the country for a month, so I don't know if I'll have internet or not. So if you guys don't hear from me for a while, I'm not dead. Probably not.
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P.S. If you haven't already, check out thankyoumcr.net it is fucking awesome. Not to mention that, my "how mcr saved my life" story got into the 'featured stories' section there. My name's Crys, in case anyone wants to go read it. =D Oh gosh, I'm such an egotist.