Categories > Celebrities > My Chemical Romance > Art Is The Weapon

Ten Seconds In

by Sassy 1 review

Gerard and Mikey start to watch the DVD

Category: My Chemical Romance - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Drama - Characters: Frank Iero,Gerard Way,Mikey Way,Ray Toro - Published: 2020-10-18 - 2459 words

Gerard was confused enough hearing about the so-called ‘family business’ but their father announcing that Emmett had supposedly been looking after them was taking his ability to concentrate to the limit. Already struggling with the little information he had been given so far, Gerard knew he had to clear up that single point before he could go any further. He hoped that Mikey would understand; ideally, he would want answers too. Raising the remote, only mere seconds into the recording, Gerard pressed the pause button.

Emmett raised an eyebrow and Mikey turned a confused glance towards his older brother.


Mikey asked; his voice subdued by hesitation. Frowning with uncertainty, Mikey was at a loss to know how he could make the question any more specific. If he asked if he was too upset to continue, he would be potentially shaming him in front of what amounted to a complete stranger. Any other question could possibly give away details he himself held.

“I’m okay, Mikes,” he nodded, understanding his brother’s obvious concern. “I… I guess I have questions.”
“Already?” Emmett asked, his voice pitched slightly higher with apparent incredulity.
Already?” Gerard gasped. “I had questions the moment you walked in! But before we go any further I have two big questions that need answering.”

Gerard pondered his thoughts for a few moments before correcting himself.

“Well, technically three, but two are related.”
“And you believe I can answer these questions?”

Emmett asked the question carefully, tipping his head back slightly and almost peering down his nose at the two boys. It almost appeared either condescending or suspicious. Gerard wasn’t certain which, but he was determined to find out.

“Oh, yeah, you can answer them all right! In fact, you’d better!”

Mikey’s eyes widened slightly as Gerard’s reply emerged sounding angry, almost hostile. The reaction was also not lost on Emmett but neither commented.

“Very well,” Emmett smiled, reaching forward to pick up his coffee, still resting untouched on the table between them. “What do you need to know?”

Gerard exhaled deeply; this felt… he almost grimaced as he thought about it. He wasn’t certain how it felt, but he knew he was uncomfortable and it was now Emmett’s job to reassure them. Plucking his coffee from the table and passing Mikey’s to him, he leaned back and nodded.

“Okay,” Gerard pursed his lips. “First things first. Where have you been for the last seven years?”
“Why seven? Your parents died two years ago.”
“I… We are very much aware of when they died,” Gerard replied through gritted teeth. “But as far as we were concerned, you died seven years ago.”
“Ah,” came the quiet reply.

Taking a sip of coffee, Emmett nodded, resigned to answering but uncertain how it would be received.

“Unfortunately,” he began again, “it was necessary for it to be generally believed that I was dead.”
“In trouble with the police?” Gerard asked.
“Hardly!” Emmett replied.

A haughty expression dominating the man’s face, changing the position of many of the lines and creases, even flattening some completely. Once again the pitch of his voice was raised, leaving him sounding genuinely affronted at the suggestion.

“Then why?” Gerard pressed, wanting real answers and ignoring the man’s defensive reaction.
“It was necessary,” he repeated without explaining anything.
“Why?” Gerard pressed. “Saying it was necessary doesn’t explain anything.”
“And I am aware of that,” Emmett’s indignation returned with the cagey response.

Emmett glanced at Mikey and momentarily considered making Gerard, perhaps both of them, forget he had asked the question but he knew as they progressed with the recording that similar, if not identical, questions would emerge. He knew it had been a risk, but it was one he felt he had to take.

“Very well,” he sighed. “It relates to the business, which I assume is your second question. If you watch the video, it will be explained but…”
“I thought you hadn’t watched it,” Gerard cut in, almost growling with mistrust.
“I haven’t,” he replied, his curt tone softening as he continued: “I heard it first hand. I was there when it was recorded.”
“Okay, carry on,” Gerard prompted, gesturing with his hand to emphasise the request.
“Your parents were in charge of a large organisation that dealt with the training and deployment of gifted spies called the Paladin Society.”

Gerard frowned deeply, all coherent thought ceasing in that moment. It was reasonable to say that of all the things he thought Emmett might say, that was not one of the possibilities he had considered. Not even close.

Leaning back in the couch, Gerard still held the mug poised ready to drink but it was forgotten. His grip softening, the mug started to slip, the hot liquid threatening to slop over the side. Without his awareness, the mug suddenly it righted itself and maintained its position initially independent of Gerard’s grip.

“Spies?” He finally choked out, moving forward to almost drop the mug on the table. “Government spies?”
“No,” Emmett replied simply. “More freelance really.”
“Freelance?” Gerard shook his head in disbelief. “You mean traitors or something? Because if you do, there’s no way…!”

Emmett raised his hands in a calming gesture, shaking his head all the while.

“No,” he began. “No, absolutely not!”
“Then what? Who are they spying for if not our government?”
“For themselves,” Emmett replied as if the reply was obvious.
“Why? What do they need to do it for?”
“The Paladins are gifted,” he explained. “I guess, to put it into terms you would understand, they are superheroes.”

Gerard leapt to his feet, rounding the couch and pacing behind it with sharp jerky movements.

“No!” He shouted, waving his arms to the side. “No, no, no, no, no! This is ridiculous!”
“But true,” Emmett added calmly before getting to his feet. “Gerard, this is a lot for you to take in and clearly it’s distressing you…”
“Oh, you think?” Gerard snapped, turning furious eyes toward the old man. “Why would it possibly upset me? This is all perfectly normal You - a man we believe is dead - turn up out of the blue and tell us mom and dad ran a group of spies!”
“Yes,” the man nodded, “and the academy where they train.”
“Trainee superheroes! Oh, I’ve heard it all now!”
“I’m going to leave you to process this. You obviously need some time. I’ll come back tomorrow evening and maybe we can continue?”
“Yeah,” Gerard pointed a finger towards him. “You do that, and you come with proof that you’re who you say you are or you’re not even getting through that door!”
“By all means,” Emmett nodded, still speaking calmly, which was serving to infuriate the young man further. “Gerard, Mikey. I’ll see you tomorrow night but I would encourage you to view the recording before then. It will help, I promise you.”

Exasperated, confused and shocked, Gerard was now struggling to even find his voice and Emmett left without a further word from him. Mikey sucked his top lip into his mouth as he pondered the evening’s events. Although the concept of real-life superheroes and the academy in which they trained was not unknown to him, the rest certainly was. He too had a lot to take in and more than that, he felt he had to work out what his reaction should be if it was all new to him. After only a few moment’s consideration, he realised that it practically impossible and by accepting that the role their parents had played was surprising enough, Mikey didn’t need to pretend.

“Well, that was strange,” he finally announced.

At first, the words drew little more than a chuckle from Gerard, but he was soon overtaken by the impossibility and bizarre nature of the conversation. Laughing uncontrollably for several minutes, Gerard flopped back down onto the couch shaking his head in dismay. His head felt empty of all reason and thought.

“I’m… I don’t know how I am,” Gerard sighed. “I just can’t get my head around this. How are you?”

Mikey took a deep breath and opened his mouth to speak before merely letting all the air out of his lungs without saying a word.

“I have no idea,” he replied, with a deep shrug restricted somewhat by the couch. Rolling his head to the side, he looked dazedly at Gerard. “I guess I’m confused.”
“Do you believe him?” Gerard asked.
“Mom and dad? Spies?” Mikey’s face screwed up with uncertainty. “When did they find the time? And you know, he never actually explained the whole dead thing.”
“Damn it!” Gerard slapped his hand on the arm of the couch. “He changed the subject! I didn’t even notice.”
“I guess we…” Mikey paused, glancing at the TV and the paused image. “I guess we have a lot to find out.”
“What do you want to do?” He asked his younger brother.
“Well,” Mikey shrugged. “I think we should order the pizzas before it gets late.”

Gerard stared at Mikey; he was replying as if either, the previous conversation was the most normal he had ever had or he was completely overcome and zoning out - a response he at least understood.

“Yeah,” he replied quietly. “Yeah, pizza. Dominos?”
“Of course!” Mikey looked thoughtful for a moment. “And some chicken. No, a lot of chicken. Double popcorn chicken, wings and some kickers.”
“Someone’s hungry!” Gerard grinned. “Always.”

Normality. Right now he craved it like air.


Frank plopped his tray noisily onto the lunchroom table, a combination of the plastic, the plates and the cutlery rattling against each other drew a deep frown from the young man sitting opposite the chair Frank was now sliding into. A book in his left hand and a fork in his right hand, the student looked up to see who had disturbed his peace.

“Huh!” He rolled his eyes. “I should have know it’d be you.”
“What?” Frank’s expression was the picture of innocence. “What have I done?”
“I wondered who would be so annoying and irritating. But, of course, it was you.”
“You don’t mean that,” Frank grinned, waving his hand in a dismissive gesture.
“Whatever gave you that idea?”
“I know you, Ray,” Frank chuckled. “Nothing irritates you, you’re a goddamn saint!”
“What do you want, Frank?” Ray rolled his eyes - he didn’t think of himself as a saint, but he certainly had the requisite patience.
“Have you seen Mikey today?” Frank grew serious.

Ray pondered the question for a few moments, placing his book on the table and his fork on the tray as he tried to fill in the gaps between the likely places he might have seen him.

“No,” he finally replied. “Maybe he was late for breakfast, like you?”
“Oh, don’t be like that!” Frank whined. “I overslept! I didn’t mean to leave you on your own.”
“I wasn’t complaining,” Ray shook his head, the mass of curls that made up his hair swaying as one.
“So, Mikey wasn’t here?”
“No, maybe he ‘overslept’ too?” Ray smirked, adding air quotes for emphasis.
“What’s that supposed to mean?” Frank pushed his shoulders back, stiff with indignation.
“You got high again last night, I take it?”
“Shhh!” Frank whispered surprisingly loudly, whilst indicating with his hands for Ray to keep his voice down. “You wan’t me to get scorched again?”

Ray scratched his head and looked at Frank with an expression that looked like amused pity.

“You’re kidding yourself if you think Scott doesn’t know,” he chuckled. “Mikey get high with you?”
“Yes he did.”
“Why did you ask, then?”
“Why did you lie?”
“I didn’t… technically. It was the afternoon and he went home after. You know he goes home most nights.”
“Oh yeah,” Ray nodded. “So, did he come back? Have you checked his room?”
“Yeah,” Frank nodded. “He’s not in any of my classes on a Wednesday. I hoped he’d be in here. You know, follow the food.”

Ray frowned; if he wasn’t ill, then where was he? It wasn’t like him to miss classes and certainly not meals and the look on Frank’s face only served to enhance his own concerns.

“Do you think he got home okay?” Ray finally asked.

Frank rubbed his eye as he decided how to answer.

“I don’t know,” he shook his head. “I mean, do you think he could be in any danger?”
“Wouldn’t we have heard from someone? Ray asked.
“Who?” Frank waved his arms to the side. “It’s possible that his brother has the academy’s number, but who’d tell us?”
“You think we should speak to Principal Scott?”

Frank closed his eyes, his shoulders sagged and he sighed deeply. He had had several meetings with the principal already - very few had gone well and some had been painful to say the least. It wasn’t that he was a particularly badly behaved student, but he was just very bad at covering it up. Added to that, when he was caught he admitted everything freely - not out of pride or gloating, but simply that he was honest. If you were honest, you didn’t have to have a good memory. Besides, being caught in a lie would be so much worse than whatever punishment he could expect merely from being found guilty of some infraction. Going voluntarily to Scott’s office, especially after receiving the mild reprimand via Mikey for trying to manipulate Scott’s secretary’s mind, seemed almost suicidal.

“Well?” Ray pressed, unaware of the cold sweat that Frank was currently experiencing.
“Isn’t there any other way?” He pleaded.

As Ray opened his mouth to speak, an announcement called out across the academy-wide tannoy system.

“Frank Iero and Ray Toro to Principal Scott’s office, immediately, please. Frank Iero and Ray Toro to Principal Scott’s office.”

Frank hung his head as the mechanical sounding voice called him to his doom. Sighing with resignation, Frank pushed his chair back.

“I guess not,” he grumbled.

Ray chuckled at the response. Picking up his book as he rose waiting only a second or two for Frank to do the same, Ray slapped a hand on his friend’s back.

“Come on, I doubt we’re in trouble.”

Frank looked up at him, wondering if he was either naive or correct. After all, the man was a saint - how could they be in trouble?
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