Categories > Theatre > Rent
Trigger warning for self-harm. Roger and Mark are happily in love. But Mark has a dark secret, and what will happen when Roger finds out?
Mark and Roger sat on Mark’s bed peacefully, Roger’s sandy blonde head resting on his boyfriend’s shoulder as they watched Mark’s favorite film.
The video faded to black and Mark got up, taking the video-cassette out of the VCR. Roger’s green eyes lingered on Mark, as he put the Breakfast Club back into the drawer below his television. The young filmmaker moved gracefully back to the bed and bowed down to kiss the rocker on the top of his head.
“I’ll be right back,” Mark said, smiling sweetly as he left the room, heading for the bathroom. Roger sat up, his body still processing the electricity of Mark’s kiss. Dizzy with affection, he got up to fiddle around with the ornaments resting on Mark’s desk. There was a small wooden elephant, a picture of him and his sister, and another picture of him, Mark and his and Roger’s best friends, Maureen Johnson and Nanette Himmelfarb. Mark’s stationary was in a neat pile on the right side and an old mug was filled with pens and pencils. Still sleepy from the film, he knocked over the mug, the contents shattering over the desk.
Roger calmly placed the pens back into the mug until a shimmering object caught his attention. It was a good thing the sunlight was hitting this room at that particular angle, or else the rocker never would’ve seen a small, yet deadly sharp blade, which fell onto the floor as Roger was reinstating Mark’s writing tools.
A small, brown stain was decorating the object as Roger picked it up and held it in his hand, holding back tears.
So this was the reason Mark always wore long sleeves, even when it was hotter than hell. This was the reason he skipped gym class so often and this was the reason he flinched slightly each time Roger slid his hand across Mark’s arm.
“I’m back,” Mark said, as he walked back into the room with a smile on his face, ready to find his boyfriend on the king sized bed. But the filmmaker’s happy expression faded when he saw Roger’s worried, angry and scared face, and turned to fear and despair when he noticed the tool in Roger’s hand.
“Roll up your sleeves,” Roger ordered, shutting his hand, forming it into a fist, as he was not emotionally capable of seeing the blade again.
“I said, roll them up,” Roger said, the look in his eyes begging Mark for it to not be true. The rocker wasn’t prepared, though, to see the faded scars, red marks, burns and scratch marks on his boyfriend’s arms, standing out so deeply out of Mark’s pale skin.
Mark broke into tears, and Roger angrily threw the blade onto the floor. “Why would you do this!” He screamed, letting tears flow down his face as well. “And, why didn’t you tell me?”
Terrified he would break his scrawny body, Roger hugged the filmmaker carefully, crying onto his back.
“I’m sorry, I’m so sorry,” Mark kept repeating, sobbing into Roger’s shoulder, clutching him tighter and tighter.
Eventually, they both let go. Roger was the first one to sit down on the bed, followed immediately by Mark, who was yearningly staring at the shiny metal object, left abandoned on the floor.
“How long have you been doing this?” Roger asked with a calm, but unmistakably sad voice.
Mark sighed. “When my sister passed, I did it a few times.” He glanced over to his boyfriend. “When we started dating, it got better and I didn’t cut for a really long time, but…” Mark stopped.
“But what?” Roger demanded.
“I couldn’t live without it anymore. I couldn’t look at a pair of scissors or a kitchen knife, or even the spikes on your belts without wanting to scratch and cut myself,” Mark admitted, and started crying even harder. He hid his face in his hands, thinking the darkness he’d always been afraid of couldn’t be worse than facing Roger’s afraid, disappointed, and hurt look.
The rocker hugged Mark and kissed his arms and hands. “You should’ve told me. I can help you, I can fix you up,” Roger assured his boyfriend, as Mark unburied his face from his hands and kissed Roger passionately.
“I love you, Rog.”
“I love you, too, Marky. I love you so damn much.”