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Title: Sometimes A Cherry Popping Is Just A Cherry Popping (Except For When It's Not)
Author: GwenCarmichael
Pairing: Jon/Spencer, Jon/Brendon, Jon/Ryan
Rating: NC-17
Word Count: 6318
Beta: cinnamoretti
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary: Jon is a master when it comes to taking V-cards, and it just so happens that Spencer, Ryan, and Brendon are looking for just that. 
Author's Note: This was written for the fabulous jedusaur who wanted a fic where Jon took the rest of the band's virginity.
Sometimes A Cherry Popping Is Just A Cherry Popping
If someone was a virgin looking to get rid of their V-card, Jon Walker was the person they went to.
It wasn't that he had gone looking for the role, far from it. Jon was a casual guy who enjoyed good sex and having a good time. He was comfortable in his own skin, patient, understanding, and for some reason, people trusted him on instinct. His first time had been nothing special. He'd been dating a girl a few years older than he, and they'd gone to bed a few times before eventually going their separate ways. Nothing special. No scarring traumatic experience that had made him want to be the savior of all virgins everywhere.
The first girl whose virginity Jon had taken had been a pretty blonde who'd grown up down the street from him. A couple dates and she had seemed pretty trusting when she suggested they 'do it.' That wasn't a big—or long-lasting—deal either, and it wasn't long before Jon started seeing guys, too. There was the occasional one he'd go steady with for a while, but for the most part, Jon was more of a 'let's be friends' kind of guy. He had a lot of friends, and it was true that he slept with, or had slept with, a fair few of them. It wasn't a big deal to Jon. As long as both parties honestly wanted it and a good time was had by all, then it was all good.
The first boy who'd had his ass cherry popped by Jon was a slightly desperate kid from a restrictive family. He'd sneak out of the house and go to crazy parties, the kind of crazy that Jon was smart enough to stay away from—the kind of crazy where kids got date raped, got the shit beat out of them, or both. A mutual friend had talked to Jon about it.
"It's really started to freak me out," Tim had said. "The kid's throwing himself at people just so he can 'be sure' he's gay or whatever, and I'm freaked he's going to go out to some bar somewhere or one of those crazy parties and get hurt. Would you—?" He'd gestured obscurely with his hand, and when Jon just stared, he clarified, "Would you fuck him?"
Jon just blinked. "What are you, his pimp?"
"No, man! I just don't want him to get wasted and then fucked by some drunk idiot who fucks him up. I know you wouldn't do that. And he's cute. He's a good-looking kid and he's funny. I'd do it myself but—" He shrugged. "Girlfriend, you know?"
Jon nodded. "Alright. I'll give it a shot. I'm not making any promises though."
It had actually gone really well. Jon and the kid—whose name was Mike—had spent a Saturday night together while Jon's parent's were out of town. They watched movies, ate pizza, made out, and when the topic of sex was brought up, Mike seemed eager enough, told Jon he trusted him about twenty times, and had his cherry popped within an hour. A good time had by all. Mike spent the night at Jon's, kissed him goodbye in the morning, and Jon never talked to him again unless he ran into him at a party.
After that, virgins just sort of started finding their way to Jon, virgins with big eyes, desperate stories, or self-conscious questions, anything that kept someone as anxious as they were from having sex with someone else.
When Jon started working as a tech for bands, he figured his cherry popping days were over, unless some groupie mistook him for one of the band members. It was his opinion that rock stars—even baby rock stars—were all indulging in sex, drugs, and rock n roll. It didn't matter how young, dorky, or inexperienced the band members were; chicks were crazy into bands. 
That all changed when he went on tour with The Academy Is…, with Panic! At The Disco opening for them.

"Total virgins, all three of them," another tech gossiped behind the venue where he and Jon were sharing a beer.
"No way." Jon took a drink and passed the bottle over. "They're all legal age, and they toured with fucking Fall Out Boy."
The tech just shrugged. "The one kid's ex-Mormon, the other two went to Catholic school. Maybe they're all super religious."
Jon gave him a look. "Have you heard the songs they play? They're about as holy as my ass."
"I don't want to know any more about your hole than I already do."
Jon stole the beer back. "Oh, fuck that. You love my ass."
And just like that, the topic of virgin boys was dropped but not forgotten.

"Hey, Jon?"
Jon looked up from the cables he was winding around to see the drummer from Panic! At The Disco watching him. "Hi. Spencer, right?"
Spencer looked pleased that Jon knew that. "Yeah."
"Hi," Jon repeated and stuck out his hand for Spencer to shake. "What can I do for you?"
"I was wondering—" Spencer blushed a little. "Do you want to go to dinner with me?"
Jon blinked. Was Spencer—flirting? "Oh."
"You don't have to," Spencer said quickly, his flush deepening. "I mean, if you don't want to, don't. I just thought, you know, tour food sucks, and maybe you'd like to—but if you don't, it's okay, I'll just, I won't—"
Jon put him out of his misery then. "No, I want to."
Spencer paused. "Really?"
Jon smiled. "Yeah. Really. I'd like to go to dinner with you."
"Yeah, okay. Uhh, can we do early dinner? I should be back sooner rather than later—you know, tech stuff."
"Oh, sure, yeah. Early dinner it is."
Jon smiled at him, and Spencer smiled back.

Spencer's version of 'out to dinner' was nice. It wasn't The Ritz or something—Spencer was a baby rock star opening for another band; he wasn't Bowie or something—but it was much nicer than Jon was expecting. 'Out to dinner' for Jon usually involved tacos, burgers, a drive though, or sometimes all three. Instead, he was actually sitting down across from Spencer in a diner booth with a plate of ribs that didn't come from a buffet. Damn, Spencer had lucky friends.
There was small talk and pleasantries first and then tour stories. Jon had more than Spencer did, but Spencer had toured with Fall Out Boy so his stories were weirder.
"—and covered us in confetti, during our set. Seriously. He turned our confetti cannons around and blasted us. I was hacking up confetti for weeks. There still might be some in the bottoms of my lungs, but that's probably permanent."
Jon laughed. Spencer was easy to talk to and easy to listen to. He was surprised with just how comfortable things were with Spencer, effortless in a way Jon hadn't had in a while.
Eventually, there was a bit of a lull in the conversation, which then grew slightly awkward. Finally Spencer said, "Umm, I don't really know how to say this without making you sound like a hooker."
Jon's eyes widened and then he snorted. So the Panic babies actually were virgins?
"Well, I am."
Apparently Jon had said that out loud. "Sorry. Rumor mill gossip, you know?"
Spencer shrugged. "True gossip. What about your rumor, that you're the guy people go to for a good first time?"
"True. But that sounds like something you'd read on a bathroom wall. 'For a good first time, call Jon.'"
"Will you do it for me?" Spencer blurted out.
Jon's eyes widened again. "Seriously?"
Spencer was incredibly red in the face, and all Jon could think was how cute it looked. "Yeah. I—It's that first time, you know? I don't want to be drunk or have it be with some asshole. The first time is—"
"Well, yeah, I suppose. I was going to say it's dangerous, but—"
"Wait, 'dangerous?'"
"Yeah. Sex with a girl is straightforward, you know? But with a guy—"
"It's backwards and there's nothing straight about it?"
It took Spencer a moment, but then he burst out laughing. Jon smiled at him.
"I don't want the first time to be something I have to worry about," Spencer said finally. "I want to not be scared shitless hooking up with some dude and worrying myself to death about what my first time is going to be like. I'm going to have enough to worry about, what with worrying about getting him to like me and being good in bed and whatever."
"You never had the opportunity in high school? All I did in high school was experiment with people."
Spencer gave him a look. "I went to a Catholic school. The homos there are about as open as Britney Spears fans at a scene show."
Jon grinned. He liked Spencer—a little sassy, very cute, fun personality. "Okay."
Spencer's eyes widened. "Really?"
"Yeah. I'll find us a place, okay?"
Spencer smiled. "Yeah. Okay."

A couple days later, Jon met up with Spencer after his soundcheck. "Hey."
Spencer smiled at him. "Hi, Jon."
"I found us a place for this afternoon, if you want."
Jon grinned. "C'mon." He led Spencer outside to a van parked outside the venue. He opened the back doors and Spencer hesitated. "What?"
"A van? Seriously?"
"What, you've never fucked in a vehicle before?"
"No," Spencer answered honestly.
Jon raised his eyebrows. "What exactly did you do during high school? Never mind. There's a first time for everything—hop in."
Spencer followed him inside, and Jon shut the doors. It wasn't bad, not really. The windows were all covered and the van was clean. Normally full of sound equipment, the back was now empty with blankets laid down.
"It's ours for the afternoon," Jon told him. "I pulled some strings."
Spencer smiled at that but hesitated when Jon sat down.
"We don't have to do anything, Spence. I'm not expecting anything from you."
"Oh, thanks."
"Not like that. I mean, I'm not going to get mad if you change your mind or just want to make out or even if you walk out right now. That's all cool with me, man."
Spencer sat down next to him, not sure what to do with his legs, his hands, his eyes.
"Come here," Jon said quietly, reaching out a hand to bury his fingers in Spencer's hair and then kiss him.
It was different, kissing Jon. He was more demanding than a girl, but not as sharp as Ryan—the only boy Spencer had ever kissed. Jon's mouth was firm but soft against his, his tongue warm and wet as it slipped into Spencer's mouth. Spencer moaned softly and shifted closer to Jon.
He ended up straddling Jon's lap as they made out, Jon's hands roaming over his shoulders, his back, his ass. He moaned when Jon squeezed his butt and rocked his hips; Jon broke the kiss to gasp out at the friction. "Fuck, Spence," he said in a rough voice. "Fuck." He kissed him again, sliding his hands up the front of Spencer's shirt to play with his nipples, making Spencer whimper into his mouth and rock against his dick.
Spencer raised his arms to let Jon pull off his shirt and then helped Jon out of his own. They struggled out of their clothes in the small space, and when they were naked, Spencer couldn't help it as his gaze dropped to Jon dick. He reached out, then realized what he was doing, and quickly drew his hand back.
"You can touch, if you want to," Jon said, and when Spencer looked up at him, unsure, Jon added, "I'd really like you to."
So Spencer did, running his fingertips up Jon's hard length, slipping them around the head and then down the other side. Jon leaned his head back and groaned. "Damn, Spence."
Spencer swallowed. "Okay. I'm ready now." He sat back and waited.
"It'll be easier for you if you're on your hands and knees."
Spencer nodded and didn't question this, just got onto his hands and knees before Jon. His heart was pounding, and he didn't think he'd ever been this nervous, but he wanted it so much. "Jon?"
"Just getting lube, sorry."
Then he felt one hand on his hip as Jon pressed a finger between his ass cheeks, slipping down and over his hole before moving inside.
Jon smiled. "Yeah."
He took his time prepping Spencer, making sure he was fully ready before sliding a condom over his dick. "You sure about this, Spencer?"
Spencer nodded. "Yeah. I trust you."
"I don't know why you do."
"Me either," Spencer said honestly. "I just do."
"Fair enough," Jon said and pushed his way inside.
Spencer gasped, a sharp inhalation followed by a hiss. "Jesus, fuck." He took a minute to get his breathing under control, then shifted his hips a little and gave a small moan. It was like nothing he'd ever felt, his body stretching to accommodate Jon inside him. That in itself was impossible to get his head around, that the feeling of being opened and filled was because Jon was actually inside his body. It was amazing, this incredible feeling of being grounded in place—in a good place, with someone who was wonderful and trustworthy. Fucking girls had never felt like that.
"You good?"
Spencer nodded. "Yeah, yeah."
Jon set up a steady rhythm, pumping in and out of Spencer's body, reaching around to jerk Spencer off in time.
Spencer came with a cry, and Jon quickly came after. Once Jon was done cleaning them up, he lay down beside Spencer and pulled him against him. "How was that?"
"Jesus, fuck," Spencer breathed. "So fucking good, Jon."
Jon smiled. "I was thinking the same thing."
"Absolutely, Spence. You're fucking hot, dude."
"I wasn't sure if—"
"Did you not notice the way I came, like, two seconds after you did? It was awesome, Spencer. Fucking awesome."
Spencer smiled, and Jon ducked his head to kiss him for a little while. Half an hour later, they went their separate ways—Spencer to his band and Jon to the techs.

Jon was walking along the vans and buses that had recently pulled into the new city. Everyone was off doing their own thing on their time off: wandering the venue, finding food, meeting people. Jon didn't have anywhere he needed to be and just wanted to stretch his legs; it had been a long drive. Before he knew what was happening, he got an armful of Brendon Urie. Brendon wrapped his arms around him, fused their mouths together, and bowed backwards, pulling Jon over him in a theatrical kiss. His mouth was hot and wet on his as he alternated between licking into Jon's mouth and sucking on Jon's tongue. When he finally pulled away with a wet pop, his eyes were bright and he was breathing hard, a wide grin on his face.
Jon was breathing hard too, but he managed to gasp out, "What the hell?"
Brendon's grin faded. "I—oh shit. I thought—I didn't—" He stared at Jon with wide eyes. "I just—"
"Spit it out, will you?"
"I just want to have some fun," Brendon whispered.
Jon's eyebrows pulled up. "And fun is?"
"Kissing you," Brendon answered eagerly, still a little unsure of Jon's reaction. "Blowing you, if you'll let me."
"Let you? Fuck, Brendon."
"I—I'm sorry. Fuck, Jon, I'm sorry. I didn't mean anything by it, I swear. I just thought it would be fun, that's all. I'm sorry."
Once Jon had taken a moment to breathe and get his head on, he shrugged. "I don't really mind. Like, at all."
"You don't?" Brendon's voice was eager, hopeful.
Jon gave him a look. "Who would say no to making out with you? And I wasn't born yesterday; I'm not one to turn down a blowjob."
Brendon grinned. "Awesome. I thought you could fuck me when I'm done, if you want."
Jon blinked. Brendon was about the most unsubtle person he'd ever met. Ever. "Is this—are you—is this an attempt to ditch your virginity?"
Brendon's smile slid off. "It's not an attempt if it works. And who told you?"
Jon shrugged. "The techs know everything."
Brendon just watched him, gauging his chances.
"Were you really going to have me fuck you without telling me you were a virgin?" Jon wasn't judging; he was just curious and a bit in shock.
Brendon hung his head and shrugged. "It's not so much about losing it, you know? I just want to have fun." He met Jon's eyes, and Jon saw that he wasn't lying.
"Like I said. Look at you. Damn, Brendon. Damn."
Brendon grinned. "You're not so bad looking yourself. Can I kiss you now?" Before Jon could finish giving him the go ahead, Brendon launched himself at him, wrapping his arms around him and kissing him hard.
Jon pushed him back against a tour bus, and he grinned at Brendon smiling up at him before covering his mouth and pulling Brendon's hips against his, rocking hard to feel Brendon moan into his mouth. Brendon reached up to tug on Jon's hair, attacking his mouth desperately and gasping as Jon rubbed against him.
"Fuck, Jon," Brendon hissed out as he pulled away to breathe and Jon sucked hard on his neck. "Fuck."
Jon kept it up, licking, sucking, and biting up and down Brendon's throat and across his jaw. He tugged on Brendon's ear with his teeth, making him buck up against him, and then Brendon pushed him off. Before Jon could figure out what he'd done wrong, Brendon spun them around and shoved Jon against the bus, grabbing his jaw and kissing him hard.
Brendon dropped to his knees, hands on Jon's belt, and looked up at him. "Can I?"
For a long second, Jon just stared. Brendon wanted to suck him right there? Fuck. Jon had never been an exhibitionist, but just the idea got him hard. "Yeah. Fuck, yes, Brendon."
Brendon smiled and pulled open the buckle on Jon's jeans before tugging them down to his ankles. For a moment, he just stared at Jon's dick, breathing over it, and Jon looked down just in time to watch Brendon lick up his dick. "Oh, fuck, Brendon."
Brendon focused on his dick with a single-minded determination, licking the shaft and sucking the head into his mouth before going down on him until he gagged. It didn't stop him though as he proceeded to give Jon the sloppiest and most enthusiastic blowjob of his life and then swallowing on top of it all.
When Jon could see again, he looked down at Brendon smiling up at him, his mouth red and wet. "Can I fuck you, right here?" Jon didn't even know where it came from, but at the moment, he wanted nothing more than to wrap Brendon's legs around his waist and fuck him against the bus.
Brendon just grinned. "Fuck, yes."
Jon reached out a hand to help Brendon up and then went to work pulling his jeans off while Brendon struggled out of his shoes, then turned around to brace himself against the bus. With a hand on Brendon's hip, Jon paused.
"What?" Brendon asked, looking back over his shoulder.
"We can't. I don't have a condom. Or lube."
"I do."
"Seriously? What are you, a boy scout?"
"No," Brendon retorted, "I'm a horny teenager. There's a condom in my wallet and lube packets, too."
"Wow," Jon muttered, bending down to dig in Brendon's jeans.
"What?" Brendon asked. "You were never horny and desperate?"
"Yeah, okay, you win."
Brendon grinned triumphantly, but the grin slipped off his face when Jon slid a finger between his cheeks and into his hole. His eyes slid closed and then he rested his forehead against the bus. "Jon."
Jon fingered him thoroughly. It was going to take him some time to get it up again, so he prepped Brendon until he was begging, taking a moment to stroke his own cock as well.
"C'mon, Jon. Jon, please. Please."
"Okay." Jon pressed himself against Brendon's back, and whispered against his ear. "Okay. Turn around."
Brendon did, immediately, and Jon slid his hands under Brendon's thighs as Brendon jumped up and wrapped his legs around Jon's waist. Propping Brendon against the bus, Jon managed to lift him up and settle him down onto his dick. From his current angle, Jon was able to watch Brendon's face as he felt a dick fill him for the first time, able to hear the broken sigh and see his eyelids flutter.
"Brendon," he whispered, kissing against Brendon's open mouth. "Brendon."
"Jon," Brendon whispered, kissing him back and rocking his hips.
Jon groaned and when Brendon smiled, Jon set up a stuttered rhythm while Brendon bounced up and down. It was fast and quick, and Brendon's come got all over their shirts.
When they separated and pulled their pants back up, Jon balled up his outer shirt and glanced over at Brendon. He'd really just fucked Brendon Urie up against a bus in the middle of the lot where anyone could have seen. Oh God. "Brendon?"
Brendon glanced up at him, giving up on wiping the come off his shirt. "Yeah?"
"You okay?"
Brendon grinned. "I'm fantastic, Jon. Fantastic." He kissed Jon hard and rough, but the kiss was full of fun and excitement, not desperation and lust like before. "You're amazing." He reached around to squeeze Jon's ass and walked away.

Jon was minding his own business backstage after a soundcheck one day when Ryan Ross came up to him, grabbed his arm, and dragged him into a closet—a closet with a door that Ryan locked.
For a minute, Ryan just looked at him. Maybe it was ten minutes, Jon thought. He could feel sweat begin to break out across his forehead—or was that just in his head? Either way, Ryan was looking right through him and it was freaking him out. He was in deep trouble.
"I know what you did for Spencer," Ryan said finally.
'For?' Not 'to?' Maybe Jon was going to survive this.
"I know what you did to Brendon, too."
Shit. There was that nasty 'did to' phrase. Jon was screwed. "Ryan, I didn't hurt them, I swear. They wanted it just as much as I did; they—"
"I know," Ryan cut him off. "I know they wanted it. You think they both haven't talked to me about it a dozen times before? And I know you didn't hurt either of them. Spencer would have told me if you had, and then I would've killed you."
Jon swallowed. Then his eyebrows pulled together as he realized what Ryan had just said. "Wait. If you knew they were both aiming to lose their V-cards, why didn't you do it?"
Ryan looked down, his floppy hair falling in front of his eyes.
"No way." Jon couldn't keep the surprise and awe out of his voice.
Ryan gave him a sharp look. "Yeah, that's right. I'm the last virgin in Panic, unless you count Brent, but who knows what or who the fuck he's doing anymore. That's why I didn't take care of Spencer and Brendon."
Jon just blinked at him, trying to take it all in.
"Would you do for me what you did for them?" Ryan asked softly, eyes still a little hard and guarded, like he was preparing for the possibility of rejection.
Like Jon would say no to Ryan fucking Ross, with his big beautiful eyes, his sharp angles, and the innocent face that contradicted his fierce attitude. "I—are you sure?"
Ryan nodded. "I'm twenty years old, dude. Girls are great and all, but they're just not—you know. They're not the same as doing it with a guy."
Jon nodded. He knew that was true—with most girls, anyway. "Okay. Yeah. Umm, give me a couple days, I'll find us—"
"No." Ryan's voice was sure. "Right here, right now."
Jon gave him a look. A storage closet backstage? This was where Ryan wanted to lose his virginity? What was it, a rock star right of passage or something? "Are you sure?"
Ryan just nodded.
Jon shrugged. "Okay." He'd had sex in closets before, closets smaller than this one, which was more of a fair sized room filled with amps and other equipment. He stepped forward and took Ryan's face in his hands, but Ryan just shrugged him off.
"Just fuck me." Ryan wasn't meeting his eyes.
Jesus Christ. Ryan was going to boss him around, and he didn't even want to kiss him? This dude was messed up. "Ryan."
"I said I want to, okay?" Ryan's voice and eyes matched in their hard edge. "Just do it. Fuck me." He shoved down his pants, not following Jon's gaze down to his dick, and turned, bending over a stack of amps. "Just fuck me, okay?"
Jon heard a broken desperation in Ryan's voice that he couldn't explain and he stepped closer and gently said, "Okay." He trailed one hand down Ryan's spine, not caring if Ryan wanted him to touch him or not. He might not be able to kiss Ryan or lay him down in a bed, but he'd be damned if he couldn't at least touch him. He paused with his hand on Ryan's hip. "Uhh, Ryan? Do you have stuff? I don't, not on me."
"Oh, yeah. In my pants." Ryan didn't move; he seemed to be hiding his face. Jon bent down, dug around in the linen until he found condoms and a bottle of lube. Ryan really had been planning to corner Jon. It wasn't just some spur of the moment occurrence, unless Ryan normally carried lube and condoms with him. Horny teenagers, Jon thought with all the sage wisdom of being a year older than Ryan.
Slicking up his fingers, Jon slid one inside Ryan's hole.
"Oh." Ryan gave a little fluttery moan and his entire body seemed to relax a little.
Jon slowly swirled his finger around, crooking it ever so slightly, trying to loosen Ryan up.
"Another one," Ryan directed. "Give me two."
Whatever Ryan wanted, Jon figured, and gave it to him. Ryan made another little sound, this one with a bit of edge to it, and Jon worked his fingers around inside of him. It wasn't long before Ryan was rocking his hips against the amp—probably not the most comfortable surface to rub off against—and Jon pulled his fingers out to put on the condom.
Ryan heard the sound and tensed up, glancing back at him for the first time since they'd started. "No way, dude, I use more prep when I finger myself! There is no way you are sticking your dick in there like that!"
"Will you just relax already and stop whining? I've done this before, and if you trust me enough to let me fuck you, you trust me enough to know how much prep you need." Being a bossy bitch was no way to impress someone. What was up with this guy? Jon was kind of hoping it was the nerves making him like this, not general asshole-ness. Though, both could probably be true.
Ryan grumbled, "Yeah, alright."
"But since you're making such a fuss—" Jon dropped to his knees, spread Ryan's ass cheeks, and licked over his hole.
"Jesus, fuck!" Ryan cried out, stretching out over the amp and pushing his ass out further.
Jon licked his way inside him, ignoring the nasty taste of the lube now covering his face.
Ryan whimpered, pushing back against Jon's face, trying to get him deeper. "Jon," he moaned in a broken voice. "Fuck, fuck, Jon."
Jon licked deeper into him, curling his tongue and pulling out to lick around the rim and down to Ryan's balls. When Ryan was making little pleading sounds, Jon finally stopped and wiped the spit and lube from his mouth.
"Yeah, yeah, Jon, please."
Finally, a bit of pliancy. He gripped Ryan's hip with one hand, guiding his dick with the other. He stopped with the head pressed against Ryan's hole. "Relax and take a deep breath." Then he pushed until the head popped in.
Ryan cried out, but Jon knew it was best for him to get it over with instead of drawing it out and pushed all the way in. Ryan gave a broken whine, pushing his head into the pillow his arms, hiding his face from Jon. Jon was pretty sure he was crying.
"I'm going to wait, okay?" He gently touched the back of Ryan's head, running his fingers through Ryan's hair. "I'm going to wait until you're ready. Don't worry about it; just take your time."
Ryan nodded a little, though it was kind of difficult to tell with the position he was in, and Jon took deep breaths, focusing on the fact that Ryan was hurting rather than the amazing tight heat squeezing his dick. Wait, wait, wait. He's hurting, he told himself over and over, and so he waited.
Ryan shifted a little beneath him, then waited, and whispered, "Okay. You can go now."
Jon gave a little thrust, barely a roll of hips, then asked, "Are you sure?"
"Yeah, yeah, I'm sure." Ryan's voice was still a little tight. "Just do it."
Jon did, pulling out and sliding all the way back in with one strong motion. He wasn't rough, and he wasn't hard. Ryan had plenty of time for crazy animalistic sex later; right then, it was all about giving him a good first time and making sure he enjoyed it.
Jon set up a steady rhythm of thrusting in and out of Ryan's body, smiling faintly when Ryan began to make cut off sounds of pleasure. Eventually, it was Jon's name coming out of his mouth. He cried out when Jon hit his prostate, and began rocking his hips back to meet Jon. Reaching around him, Jon gripped Ryan's dick firmly and began to pump him in time with his thrusts. Ryan was whimpering furiously at the sensory overload, pushing back onto Jon's dick and forward into his hand until he came with a cry. Jon pushed into him a few more times, trying to be gentle but quick so that he could come before Ryan got too uncomfortable. After he came, he pulled out as soon as he returned to himself, giving Ryan a little space as they both pulled their pants back up.
"Thanks," Ryan said softly, glancing at his eyes quickly and then looking away. When Jon went to give him a good-bye kiss, Ryan ducked away again. "Don't, Jon." There was something worn in his eyes, sad and tired. "Don't pretend it's something it's not." He gave Jon an empty half smile and left the closet.
After cleaning Ryan's come off his hand and disposing of the condom, Jon returned to work, presuming his life was going to go back to normal. No more virgins on the tour; his unofficial work was over. For some reason, though, it didn't feel like it had in the past, like he was doing anyone a favor, not even himself. He tried to shrug it off and focus on the music. That was his life, after all.
Except For When It's Not

Loaded down with cords and equipment, Jon knocked into someone backstage. "Oh, shit, I'm sorry." When he saw who it was, he smiled. "Hey, Ryan." The smile melted off his face as Ryan pushed past him and hurried away. He chalked it up to Ryan being his scrawny weird self and didn't pay it any more mind—until it happened again.
"Oh, hey Ryan." Jon smiled at Ryan, a cup in his hand, and Ryan froze, like the proverbial deer in headlights before bolting with none of a deer's grace. "What the hell?" Jon asked, turning to the closest crew member, who just shrugged.
"That Ross kid is weird, man."
Jon shrugged in response, but he couldn't explain the nagging feeling at the edge of his brain.

Jon became pretty popular with the Panic! kids. When Spencer had first asked him to come hang out, he'd thought things would be awkward—but they weren't. He wasn't sure if it was Brendon's outgoing nature or Spencer's sweet charm, but it was impossible to feel out of place with them. He started hanging out with Brendon and Spencer pretty frequently, but Ryan was never anywhere to be found. He always had somewhere else he had to be, someone to see or something to do, and since it was none of Jon's business, he let it go. It was a little weird that Ryan would make excuses to be on another bus—or even curled up in a tech van, as Jon had once discovered—instead of being with his band if Jon was there, but Jon couldn't figure out what the big deal was.

"Ryan falls for people," Brendon said offhand one day.
Spence nodded in agreement. "He has since we were kids. He barely knows a girl and he falls in love with her. There's nothing wrong with it—not for the girl, anyway. But Ryan always gets his heart broken."
"He falls in love fast and hard," Brendon said. "Why do you think he writes me the lyrics he does?"
Jon nodded. That made more sense than it didn't, but it didn't really explain—unless— "No way."
Brendon looked a little wary, like he'd been caught red handed. "What?" he asked guardedly.
"Do you think Ryan—?"
"Is tall? Scrawny? A weirdo? A twerp?"
Jon snorted. "I know that already."
"Good. I hoped you weren't deaf, blind, and dumb."
Jon threw a shoe at him. "Fuck you, Brendon."
"You already did, baby." Brendon winked at him and Jon laughed.

"Hey, can I talk to you?"
Ryan looked terrified when Jon walked up to him. "Umm, no, not now. I'm busy. I've got to—" With that, Ryan hurried away.

"Ryan! I've been meaning to ask you something."
Ryan looked up at Jon from tying his shoe, his hair falling in front of his large eyes. "Jon. Umm, I, it's not really a good time. I'm supposed to be with Academy, we were going to, umm, go see some people. Another time?"
Once again, Ryan disappeared.

"Let's go." Jon took Ryan's arm and hauled him away.
"I—Jon, I can't right now, I've got—"
"Nothing to do, nowhere to be, no one to see. It's my turn for your attention." He noticed Ryan blush but didn't say anything about it as he pushed Ryan into the makeup room and locked the door behind him, standing in front of it with his arms crossed.
Ryan didn't meet his eyes, just stood awkwardly in the center of the room, crossing and uncrossing his arms before pushing them into his pockets. He ended up kind of hunching in around himself.
"Ryan, what's going on?"
Ryan shrugged, not looking at him. "Nothing."
"C'mon, you've been avoiding me."
"What? That's stupid. Why would I—"
"We both know why you would. I just don't know if that's why."
"Jon, c'mon. Don't do this."
"Don't do what, Ryan? Just tell me."
"It's none of your business!" Ryan finally looked at him, his eyes hard and guarded.
"Like shit it's not! You're avoiding me—that's my business."
"Just leave me alone, okay?"
"No. If you wanted me to leave you alone, you shouldn't have asked me to fuck you."
"You got what you wanted, okay, so just—"
"I got what I wanted? What the hell, Ryan? I'm not like that."
"Aren't you?"
"No, I'm not!"
"It was just sex, okay? Don't make it into something it's not."
"I just want to know why, Ryan. Why are you doing this? What did I do wrong? Why are you—?"
"It wasn't just sex for me, okay?" Ryan's eyes were bright and fierce, with a desperate pained edge to them in the shimmering tears. "I wanted more than that."
Jon just looked at him. "Then why didn't you tell me that?"
Ryan snorted. "You collect V-cards; you weren't going to want to be my boyfriend. So I took what you were willing to give me and pretended it was enough."
Jon shook his head, speechless. "I didn’t—Ryan—I—"
"Just spit it out, okay?"
Jon glared at him. "If you had wanted more from me, I would have given it to you. Okay? Usually I don't want more, that's true. Usually I just want a good time with someone. But with you, I would give you anything you want."
Ryan's eyes narrowed. "Would have given, or would give?"
"Would give," Jon whispered.
Ryan's eyes went round and open as he blinked at Jon, not quite daring to hope but wanting to so badly. "Really?"
"I don't—you don't even—I'm just—"
"I think you're beautiful. Did you know that?"
Ryan shook his head.
"It's true. You have the most beautiful eyes I've ever seen, and I love the way you hide behind your hair and your makeup. You're gorgeous and sexy and sweet, and you have more attitude than any dude I've ever met. And I love the way when you get up on stage and nothing else matters except you and the music."
"Yeah. I'm not messing with you, Ryan. I really mean it. I really want to be with you."
Jon took Ryan's hand and tangled their fingers together before kissing him softly and sweetly, and Ryan believed him.

Shut Up And Blow Me

Title: Shut Up And Blow Me
Author: GwenCarmichael
Band: My Chemical Romance
Pairing: Frank/Gerard
Rating: R
Word Count: 1460
Beta: cinnamoretti
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary: Frank owes Gerard after kicking him in the balls on stage.  
Author's Note: Inspired by this video here
Shut Up And Blow Me
Frank toweled off his ass before dressing the bottom half of his body. Screw putting on a shirt—it was too hot for that. He wouldn't have bothered with pants either, but he was still at the venue. God only knew what kind of people he'd run into or who would post pictures of his junk online.
He ran his fingers through his hair as he stepped back into the dressing room. He personally believed that all venues should install showers. He might be used to the reek of tour life, but there was no need for civilians to be exposed to it. Venue showers were a win-win all around.
Not that the rest of his band was taking advantage of the shower opportunity. The Way brothers smelled like a sewage treatment, and while Ray didn't wash up half as often as Frank would have liked, he at least used dry shampoo every couple days.
Gerard was sprawled in a chair, a water bottle pressed to his crotch, with the rest of the band spread throughout the room. A few friends and techs were there as well, all either oblivious to the stink of the band or very good at repressing their gag reflex.
"Did you get kicked in the balls by someone named Frankie?"
Frank grinned, and Gerard nodded somberly. "I was wondering what he was doing over there in the first place. I was like, 'Oh, he's way over here', and then when he kicked me in the balls, I was like, 'What did I do?'"
Frank laughed, at Gerard's expression, the memory of kicking him in the balls, and the adrenaline still plowing through him.
Gerard finally saw him and looked at him with wide eyes. "Did I do something?"
Frank grinned, wide. "No."
"Then why?"
"I just felt like it." Frank shrugged, laughing.
Ray crossed his legs protectively. "Glad I have a guitar to protect my junk from you."
Frank burst out laughing. It wasn't really that funny—none of it was—but in his wired state, it was hilarious.
"Are you fucking kidding me?" Gerard asked, tired eyes wide.
"Yeah. I just—I just felt like it. For no reason, man. I was all over the stage, and then I was next to you, and I was just like, 'I should kick him in the balls,'" Frank gasped out, still laughing.
"Oh, yeah, fucking great idea," Gerard muttered.
Mikey shrugged. "It'll keep the fans on their toes. Every time Frank gets close, they'll wonder, 'Is he gonna kiss him or hit him?'"
"Your face was priceless," Ray said with a laugh.
"That fucking hurt!" Gerard cried indignantly. "You won't think it's so funny when it's your balls he's kicking."
Ray winced, but he was still smiling good naturedly.
Frank pulled out a chair and plopped down next to Gerard. "Sorry. I'll try to keep my feet on the floor. Off your balls, at least."
"And off my drums," Bob added.
"And off your drums."
Suddenly Gerard leaned forward, reached across Frank's bare chest, and grabbed one of his nipples, pinching and twisting hard.
"Jesus, fuck!" Frank cried. "What the fuck, Gee? Why would you—okay, I know why—but fuck! I got you on stage; I wasn't even thinking. This was premeditated!"
Gerard sat back and shrugged. "Not really. I was just sitting here, with my balls in a knot, and I thought, 'I'd like to hurt Frank.' So I did."
Frank hunched forward protectively. "Jesus. Who peed in your Wheaties?"
"You kicked me in the balls!"
Frank couldn't help but smile at the memory again. "That's going in the tour DVD."
"You owe me, fucker."
Frank just smiled. "Sure. Anything you want. Want me to lend you my shampoo?"
"Oh, fuck you." Gerard flipped him off, but he was smiling.
"Mikey might want to borrow it," Ray said, running his fingertips over Mikey's slick hair. When Mikey jerked away, pulling a face, Ray added, "He won't be getting any if he doesn't shower."
"TMI, Ray," Gerard replied on reflex.
Frank's eyes lit up. "That's genius, Ray. I may start employing that rule."
Gerard snorted. "Good luck with that. I can go a lot longer without showering that you can go without getting laid."

At the hotel—it was a rare and glorious hotel night—Gerard dumped his bags at the side of his bed and rubbed at his head, pushing his hair around in a ratty mess. It looked like someone had dumped a vat of fry grease on his head, and Frank couldn't imagine touching Gerard's nasty hair.
"Come here," Gerard ordered, hands on his hips.
Frank glanced up from digging in his bag, surprised by Gerard's tone, and obeyed, moving to stand across from him at the foot of Gerard's bed.
Gerard just looked at him for a moment, then wrapped his arms around Frank's neck and bowed into him.
"Gee! I just showered, fucker."
"I don't care." Gerard kissed him roughly, all tongue and teeth—hard, sloppy, and aggressive. He pulled back, panting, and demanded, "Blow me."
Frank cocked an eyebrow.
"You owe me." Gerard pushed down on Frank's shoulders. "So blow me."
Frank willingly went to his knees, gripping Gerard's hips and burying his face in Gerard's crotch. He pulled a face, even though Gerard couldn't see it. God, he smelled bad, and his jeans were filthy with sweat and B.O. Frank tried to remember the last time Brian had raided the bus with the Febreeze bottle. Whenever it was, it was overdue again. Long overdue.
He tugged at the button and zip of Gerard's pants, pulled them down with his underwear, and gagged at the overpowering wave of stench. Jesus Christ. Why was Frank the only one concerned with personal hygiene?
"C'mon." Gerard rocked his hips a little, impatient. "Do it."
Frank licked at the head and down the side, pulling back long before he reached the curls of hair at the base. He went down on him tentatively, and Gerard made a low sound. Frank gagged, even though Gerard's dick was nowhere near the back of his throat, and pulled off.
"Fuck, you taste nasty. Have you showered yet this tour?"
"Shut up, you fucker, and blow me," Gerard growled and pushed Frank's mouth back onto his dick.
Frank was sloppy, but Gerard didn't seem to mind. Breathing through his nose wasn't very helpful, but it was that or be suffocated by Gerard's dick. He could feel spit running down his chin, but before he could get self-conscious, he heard Gerard making desperate sounds above him.
Gerard grabbed onto his hair and fucked his face a little, nothing rough, just enough to get what he was looking for. Frank relaxed his throat and let him do what he wanted. Gerard knew how much Frank could take, and he didn't push the limits.
Frank gripped Gerard's hips tighter as Gerard came in his mouth, sucking him through it and swallowing as much as he could. When he pulled back, he wiped at the come and spit on his chin and grinned up at Gerard, who was still breathing hard, eyelids heavy.
"You should fuck me, too."
Frank snorted as he got to his feet, feeling the blood flow in his knees. "That's where I draw the line. Shower first. Then I'll fuck you."
Gerard rolled his eyes. "God, Frank."
"Not even God would fuck you like this."
Gerard laughed and tugged off his shirt. "God wouldn't fuck me if I showered in holy water."
"Smart man."
"Oh, fuck you." Gerard struggled out of his pants. "You love it, and you know it."
"Yeah, yeah." Frank was smiling though, and he reached out to smack Gerard's bare ass. "Shower, then sex."
Gerard rolled his eyes but went to shower anyway. If it meant getting to have sex with Frank, he'd even use soap.

Frank lay in bed, curled up with his finally showered Gerard. He sighed contentedly.
"You know we're both nasty again," Gerard pointed out.
"At least we were clean when we started. That's what counts."
"I have come in my ass."
Frank snorted. "You like to be nasty. That should feel normal for you."
Gerard elbowed him. "Maybe I won't let you fuck me anymore."
"Yeah? And then who'd make you shower once a month before you kill our fans with your stink?"
"You're really great with pillow talk," Gerard said dryly. "Such a charmer. Why do I put out for this?"
"'Cause I rock your world."
"Not helping your argument, Frank."
Propping himself up on one elbow, Frank threaded his fingers in Gerard's hair and kissed him long and slow, leaving him breathless. "That's why you put up with me."
"Yeah." Gerard smiled up at him. "That's why."

In The Same Place At The Same Time

Title:  In The Same Place At The Same Time
Author:  GwenCarmichael
Pairing:  Adam/Kris
Rating:  NC-17
Word Count:  8574
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary:  Kris and Adam are reunited as judges on American Idol Season Sixteen and realize that they're completely different people than they were before.   
Author's Note:  This was written for the beautiful, wonderful, amazing Caris, for always being willing to lend me an ear, for encouraging me when no one else notices, and for being absolutely beautiful. 
In The Same Place At The Same Time
Hollywood, CA
Randy Jackson decided to leave American Idol after fifteen years.  He'd outlasted half a dozen judges and guest judges, but after fifteen years, he decided it was time to quit.  Instead of cancelling the show like almost everyone in the world expected—honestly, they'd been waiting for cancellation to be announced since Simon left the show—the producers pulled out one final stunt to keep the show afloat. 
That was how Kris Allen and Adam Lambert, two thirds of the Kradison hit of season eight, found themselves as judges on American Idol, Season 16.  A lot had changed for the two men since their run on the show had ended seven years before and they hadn't really spoken since. 
Kris and Katy had divorced a few years back.  His first record wasn't the success it was expected to be and he toured on and off opening for bands younger than he was.  He had trouble finding a producer for the second record and then spent long months in the studio trying to please the producer he'd found.  The record had been a hit—but his marriage had tanked.  When Katy filed for divorce, he cancelled his tour, breaking his contract, to try to fix things.  He failed at that, too, and his wife left him.  He was at an all new low with no wife and no contract and no prospect of getting either back. 
Adam, on the other hand, was huge.  His first album had been a success, but the second had been phenomenal.  World tours went on and on with new legs being added every few months.  His third album was just as big and just as successful.  He was on top of the world, having just come off his third world tour and about to get back in the studio to record album number four. 
They had thought they were in separate worlds when they'd been on Idol together, but this time around, they were in completely different galaxies. 
Auditions: Week 1
Phoenix, AZ
When Adam arrived—a little late, but nothing detrimental—at the first week of American Idol auditions and saw Kris Allen waiting, it was like he was back seven years before.  Kris had always looked young and the seven years had only done good to make him look closer to his age, though he still looked more like a young man than any other 33-year-old Adam knew.  Kris didn't notice him right away, which gave Adam a minute to look him over.  His worn jeans and blue plaid shirt over a black t-shirt were just as casual as ever, his floppy hair just as sexy, his dark eyes just as beautiful, his smile just as infectious. 
Adam knew that he himself had changed.  Seven years of regular touring had toned his body well, and there was no longer any part of it that he wasn't a hundred and ten percent comfortable with.  The hair on the sides of his head was cropped tight, and his black coif was sprayed quite high with layers of black and red extensions dangling down his back.  His leather pants were tight and black, as were his boots, and the loose black shirt he wore was torn to reveal slits of red.  He was cocky now—cockier, at least—and even more confident than ever before.  He was on top of the world, and American Idol could only further his dreams this time around—not destroy them, like it could have done seven years ago. 
"Hey."  He smiled at Kris as he walked up to him, watched the light in Kris's eyes change when he saw Adam. 
"Adam."  He got to his feet, eyes wide as he took in all of Adam, and then he gave an easy smile.  He hugged Adam when Adam reached out to him and then looked him over. 
"You look…" He considered for a moment.  "Even more overwhelming in person."
Adam grinned at him.  "You're still my sweet southern boy." 
Kris smiled and his eyes slid away for a moment.  When he looked back at Adam, he asked, "Isn't 109 degrees a little too hot for leather pants?"
Adam laughed.  "Honey, I wore leather pants in Australia—with no underwear."
Kris winced.  "Masochist."
"In the right situation."
The first day of auditions was eye-opening.  It wasn't as dreadful as Simon has always made it out to be, but it wasn't Adam's favorite way to spend his time, either.  Having been on the other side of the judges' table before, Adam tried to be constructive but realistic.  Kris, on the other hand, was very supportive, encouraging everyone to chase their dreams while they had the chance.  It was different from the down-to-earth Kris Adam remembered. 
"Do you want to do dinner?" Adam asked as Kris rolled out his shoulders at the end of the day. 
"Uhh, sure."  Kris nodded.  "That'd be nice." 
Adam grinned.  "You want to call your people and let them know you'll be with me for a couple hours, they can pick you up later?"
For a minute, Kris blushed ever so slightly.  "I—I don't have people anymore, Adam."
Adam blinked at him, taken aback.  He didn't take advantage of his people, but he took them for granted, just a little.  Mostly, he just knew they'd always be there.  They were just more constant people in his life, like his band or his brother.  Kris didn't— "Oh.  Okay.  You want to ride with me then?"
Kris glanced away and put his hands in his pockets.  "Yeah, that'd be nice, yeah." 
Adam smiled at him, trying to relieve his embarrassment but not really sure how.  Kris had never needed—or wanted, really—any of the fame attached to being a musician, and it was strange to see him self-conscious of not having it. 
Adam—Adam's people—drove them to a quiet out of the way place with dark mood lighting and high-up fancy-to-do people.  He thought he saw Kris flinch at the prices on the menu and quickly added, as casually as he could, "My treat tonight, huh?"
It was awkward talking to Kris.  That was the first thing Adam realized over the course of dinner.  Their initial greeting had been comfortable, and Kris had been everything he'd been seven years before—sweet, innocent, hopeful, shy.  This Kris was different.  He was uncomfortable and out of his element; he was self-conscious and tired.  He was worn down and completely unlike the boy Adam had known before. 
"I still write," Kris said, a touch of reluctance and defensiveness in his voice, like he'd answered this question one too many times before.  "I've written songs for a lot of musicians, and they've all seemed to like them just fine."
"But why aren't you the one singing them?" Adam asked, certain he was missing something. 
Kris shrugged.  "I don't have a label.  I barely have a manager—he's more of a liaison between me and artists who want my songs.  Besides, no one wants to hear me anymore.  I'm a has-been, if I ever was anything to start with."
The casual way that Kris said this, like he was stating a fact not looking for pity, caught Adam completely off-guard.  He was used to Kris being unsure of his skills, of being too modest, but this was absurd.  He didn't know what to say to that.  Adam surrounded himself with people who were self-confident, with people who knew what they wanted out of life and worked themselves to death to get it.  They were the best kind of people and the only kind that Adam wanted to associate himself with.  He wanted their drive and passion to rub off on him and encourage him; he didn't want self-deprecation and a lack of care in his life. 
Adam's people dropped Kris off at the hotel he was staying at, a hotel that was much smaller and less impressive than Adam's. 
"Goodnight," Adam said with what he hoped was a promising smile. 
"Night, Adam.  See you tomorrow." 
The way Kris said it made Adam think they were co-workers at a shitty job that Kris wouldn't stay at if he had anywhere else to go.  
Auditions: Week 2
Kansas City, MO
Sitting next to Kris for hours a day made Adam very aware of one thing:  he still wanted him.  It had been no secret that Adam had wanted Kris back in their day on Idol; he'd even said it in an interview, joking that it had been just his luck to be paired with the cutest guy in the house.  And Kris had had a good time with it, too, saying he had a crush on Adam.  It had been perfectly innocent—they'd said that in an interview, too—and perfectly casual.  Nothing came from it but a deep friendship, a friendship that had somehow been forgotten as soon as the Idol Tour had ended that summer, and they had both gone their separate ways. 
The attraction was still there, and it was still strong.  Kris was still beautiful, and funny, and sweet.  He still had puppy dog eyes that made Adam melt inside; he still had that beautiful carefree smile.  Sitting beside him in the judges' booth, Adam found himself making up reasons to lean close and whisper something to him or to inconspicuously sprawl in Kris's space—anything to get closer to him. 
Adam had had his fair share of beautiful men over the past years.  Most of them were high profile love affairs or flirtations, and they'd all been exciting, glamorous, and sexy.  It was no secret that Adam had a type and that he liked his boys young, pretty, tiny, and glam. 
Kris wasn't any of these things.  He wasn't a boy anymore; he was a man.  He was beautiful and handsome, not pretty.  He was shorter than Adam, but he wasn't tiny and pliant.  He certainly wasn't glam.  He wasn't even southern boy chic.  He was just Kris—just perfect, beautiful, wonderful, heart-stopping Kris. 
And Adam couldn't believe that he'd let Kris go seven years before. 
Auditions: Week 3
Los Angeles, CA
Kris was tired.  He was worn out, worn down, and just plain tired.  He'd tried reaching for his dreams, he'd worked hard, and he'd lost everything.  He'd lost his record label, his chance at a music career, and his wife.  He had absolutely nothing. 
This bit on Idol was a desperate attempt he no longer believed in.  The publicity was great for judges.  Hadn't J Lo and Steven Tyler milked it for all it was worth, using it as an opportunity to market albums and singles that weren't even very good?  It had been a miracle, almost like a dream, when the producers had reached out to him and asked him to be a judge.  Here it was, his last chance to make it or break it before it was all over.  He had jumped at the chance, reached out towards that long-abandoned dream. 
Now… now he just wanted to let it go.   
He'd had his chance, and he hadn't made it.  He was going down with Taylor Hicks as the two greatest failures to ever win American Idol.  At least Taylor was still making albums.  What did Kris have?  He used to live, breathe, and dream music.  Not anymore.  He was tired of trying, tired of failing, tired of having everything blow up in his face. 
This was it—his last public appearance.  After American Idol, he was going home.  Maybe he'd teach.  Maybe he'd work construction.  Maybe he'd just disappear and sell paint again. 
Honestly, he didn't even care anymore. 

Auditions: Week 4
Chicago, IL
"I'm done, Adam," Kris said tiredly.  Everything about him was tired:  his eyes, his voice, his body, his mind.  He was just done, with everything.  "It was a nice dream, but now it's over."
"How can you say that?" 
They were at dinner together after a two very long days of auditions in Chicago—days full of kids who couldn't sing to save their lives but thought they could, kids who would do anything to reach their dreams but it still wouldn't be enough, kids who needed music to save their lives but couldn't express it.  It broke Kris down. 
"It's the truth, Adam.  I had my chance, but I couldn’t make it.  Now I'm done."
Adam shook his head.  "You have to fight; you have to work for it."
Finally, a light burned in Kris's eyes.  "I have to work for it?  You think I haven't been working my ass off for years to get to where I am now?  You think I didn't sing at shitty empty bars until two in the morning every weekend in college while you were in touring musicals?  You think I didn't smile and play nice while opening for bands younger than me while you were touring the world?  You think I didn't throw myself at any producer who would take me while producers were lined up outside your door for the chance to work on your second album?  You think—" His voice and he swallowed hard before brokenly adding, "You think I didn't give up everything I had for the woman I loved, just so she could leave me anyway, while you were surrounded by beautiful men who would have done anything for you?"  Kris looked away and when he looked back, his eyes were wet.  "Don't you dare say that I didn't work, Adam, because I worked my ass off.  It just wasn't enough, for anyone."

Auditions: Week 5
Orlando, FL
In Orlando, things were tense between them.  Kris was still bitter that Adam had presumed to think he could make assumptions about how hard Kris was working and how much fight Kris had within him, and Adam was still sure that Kris was giving up and that he had more in him than he was letting on. 
After one young man sang a snippet of a country song Kris had grown up loving, Kris was the tie-breaking vote between Adam's 'no' and Kelly's 'yes.'  Kris looked at the young man and he saw himself standing before the judges seven years before with nothing but his dreams to his name.  "Yes."
Once the boy left, Adam turned to him.  "You have to be realistic about his chances of making it, Kris.  Telling him he's got a great voice and a lot of confidence isn't going to help his shitty voice."
"Oh, his voice is shitty?" Kris challenged.  "What about the last kid who came out here in glitter and did that Gaga medley?  You just liked him 'cause he was a flaming homo."
Adam's eyes widened like Kris had slapped him.  Shit.  Kris hadn't meant to say that, hadn't meant to sound like the homophobic assholes Adam had had to put up with his whole life, but he couldn't take it back.  It was the truth, even if it wasn't polite or even decent to say it out loud. 
The emotion flooded out of Adam eyes then, leaving them hard and empty.  "So that's how it is.  Fine."  He turned away and didn't speak to Kris for the rest of auditions.
Auditions: Week 6
Las Vegas, NV
"What are you talking about?  He sounds like Bowie.  Bowie is a legend.  Definitely a yes." 
"Beautiful.  You're beautiful, you have a beautiful voice, and you have beautiful dreams.  I loved it."
"I just don't think you can break out of the shy southern boy mold."
"I think you have too much self-confidence and nothing to back it up." 
In Vegas, Kris and Adam bickered incessantly.  If Adam liked someone, by default, Kris hated them.  They started using the contestants as outlets to vent their frustrations at each other, leading to comments about someone being "too camp" or someone seeming like a "quitter."  Kelly, a one-name songwriter/producer who was the season's third judge, tried to keep things under control and give everyone a fair shot, but she was fighting a losing battle.  Adam and Kris were out of control, and she could only hope they wore out their fight before the next big thing walked in and they kicked it out on its ass.  They both felt a bit guilty about crushing kids' dreams just to get back at each other—a lot guilty—but they couldn't stop.  They were in their own private war, and anyone who came into contact with them became a casualty.
Auditions: Week 7
New York, NY
In an interview in New York, they were named the new Simon and Paula, only with more sexual tension and no cute down time. 
"Adam's had everything in life that he could possible want," Kris said in response to questions about Adam's judging style.  "He's part of a glam scene where the clothes you wear are more important that what you're singing about, where being able to make the audience spontaneously orgasm is the main goal.  He's lost sight of real music, when it's just about someone's heart and voice." 
"Kris just isn't willing to go after what he wants," Adam answered in another question.  "It's good for kids coming on the show to see a has-been who could've been more.  It encourages them to keep being individual, to keep going after their dreams, and to never give up or you become miserable."  The 'like Kris' was heavily implied, but not said. 
Adam laughed.  "I guess we'll have to wait until moving in day to see who the prettiest boy in the house is, but I doubt it'll be Kris this time around.  I've seen a lot of pretty and talented boys this round through on Idol and there's going to be some serious competition."
"I think the girls are really bringing it this year," Kris said.  "There are a lot of very beautiful, very sweet, and very talented girls on the show, and I'm really excited to see more of them." 
The magazine went so far as to call season sixteen the 'most provocative and sexually driven' season of Idol so far, due to what they called the 'high risk of Kris and Adam either strangling each other or fucking each other on live television, center stage.' 
The show's producers had never seen this coming.  They had expected to get all the season eight fans back into Idol, because for some reason, Kris and Adam had always been popular, for absolutely no reason that the producers could see.  However, they certainly weren't complaining about the media coverage Kris and Adam were bringing in with this unforeseen tactic.  All publicity was good publicity, after all. 
Hollywood Week
Hollywood, CA
There were a couple weeks before the auditions and Hollywood week, and during this time, Kris really took a moment to breathe and refocus.  Adam was right, in a way.  If music was what he loved, if music was all he wanted out of life, shouldn’t he die fighting for it?  Wasn't that what he was always telling everyone?  Maybe it was time to start listening to his own advice. 
Apart from that, he didn't want to fight with Adam anymore.  Adam had been a rock for him back during their time on Idol—the one to reassure him when he got worked up over a show, the one to take away a bit of the judges' criticism when it got to be too much, the one to talk to Kris until he fell asleep.  Adam had meant the world to him and just because they had gone their separate ways didn't mean that he wanted to spend the rest of his life fighting with him. 
Before they were due at the judges' table, Kris walked up to Adam.  "Adam?"
Adam looked at him warily, his eyes guarded for whatever poison Kris might throw at him. 
"Can we start again?  I don't like the person I've been lately." 
Adam's eyes widened, but Kris had always been the first of them to admit he was wrong.  Adam nodded.  "Yeah.  Yeah, I've been an ass." 
Kris smiled.  "Good."
"Good that I've been an ass?"  Adam was biting back a smile. 
"Well, no, but you know how I feel about your ass." 
"I thought that was just me."
"We both know you love your ass, Adam."
Adam laughed, and so did Kris.  It felt good to laugh again; it felt even better to be laughing with Adam. 
Hollywood, CA
Sitting in the Kodak Theatre to judge the semi-finals was the first time Kris had been on Idol in almost seven years.  He'd had one come-back performance on Idol the year after he'd won, but Adam had been back multiple times, both as a performer and as a mentor.  It was just another reminder of how different their lives were, how their two paths that started in the same place had veered so far apart. 
"It's Derek for me," Adam announced after the Top 13 were announced. 
"Derek," Adam repeated.  "I'm putting my money on Derek winning.  I like him, a lot."  Derek was a little older than the other contestants and a seasoned performer, someone who commanded attention as he owned the stage and his voice.  He impressed Adam and not just because of his rock edge.  "How about you?"
"C'mon.  There's only thirteen of them.  You don't have a favorite?"
"Sarah," Kris said softly, and Adam smiled knowingly.  Sarah was young, pretty, and amber-haired with a voice like an angel.  She was sweet mannered, soft-spoken, but loved life, if her performances were anything to go by. 
"Of course."
"She's not your type at all."
Kris raised an eyebrow.  "What about Derek?  There hasn't been a contestant more like you since James Durbin." 
Adam laughed.  "True.  Very true.  Even if James was metal and—"
"—and you're glam, I know, I know," Kris finished with a sigh and a smile. 
They went out to dinner together, and for Kris, that was the pivotal moment.  That was when Kris found himself staring into Adam's eyes and picking out the random shapes in all that blue, found himself wondering what the short hair on the sides of Adam's skull would feel like under his fingers.  He wondered just how much of Adam was soft and how much was firm muscle.  Sitting across from Adam, he felt like he was in orbit of a sun and there was nothing else in the world.  Adam was breathtaking, life-altering, mesmerizing. 
Holy shit, Kris thought to himself.  Holy shit.
Top 13
Hollywood, CA
To celebrate neither Derek nor Sarah being kicked off, Adam brought Kris over to his house.  It was less a celebration and more a casual hang out, Kris quickly realized when he and Adam were sprawled on the couch barefoot with their show clothes reduced to pants and a single shirt instead of Kris's sweater/tie combo and Adam's vest/jacket ensemble.  There was a movie playing that they were both only half watching—a remake of The Shining—while they ate junk food; Kris was digging into a pan of fudge brownies while Adam emptied a the remains of a half-gallon of ice cream. 
It was causal and relaxed, but Kris was still hyper-aware of just how close he was to Adam and exactly how much space was between them.  Adam's feet were on the coffee table and his right foot was very close to Kris's left.  When he stretched almost in half to reach the remote control, Kris saw Adam's shirt ride up, revealing an inch of pale skin across his lower back. 
It was so easy with Adam, and Kris had missed that.  He'd missed just feeling at home with someone else, like there was nothing demanded of him, like he was only a means to an end.  There was an uncomfortable feeling with Adam, too, a feeling of being pushed and encouraged to reach farther than he thought he could, but it was a good feeling, a reassuring feeling because somehow he knew that even if he fell, Adam would never desert him; Adam would be the net to catch him.  It was a good feeling. 
"Oh, shit, I forgot to tell you!" Kris exclaimed suddenly. 
He had Adam's full attention, and for a moment, his breath caught.  "I—I'm getting a record deal again."
Kris nodded.  "My manager's talking with some labels, working things out.  I'm going to start writing again—writing for me, not for someone else—and then it's back to the studio."
Adam grinned his big beautiful smile that was like a breath of fresh air into Kris's lungs, and Kris smiled back.  Adam wrapped him in a hug—a real hug full of love and warmth and strength, none of the phony Hollywood hugs that had filled Kris's life up to that point.  "I'm so proud of you," he heard Adam say into his neck, and Kris felt proud of himself for the first time in a long time. 
Top 12
Hollywood, CA
From the minute he got into Adam's house after the Top 12 were cut to eleven, Kris could feel that something was about to change.  He didn't know what it was, but as the night went on, the feeling got stronger and stronger.  He and Adam crashed on the couch as they talked about music, talked about their families, watched some bad reality TV—
— and then Adam's mouth was on his, firm but gentle and oh so soft.  When Adam pulled back, his breath was shallow and Kris's eyes were wide, his lips parted.  Adam leaned in again, but Kris turned away.  "No."
Adam looked at him and evenly said, "I want you."
"I do too.  We just—we can't."
Adam's eyes were hard, like he'd been told that line one too many times.  "Why is wrong to want what we want?"
"It's not!  It's just—this—we can't."
"Why, Kris?  We've waited seven years to both be in the same place—isn't that long enough?"
Kris hung his head, and when he spoke, his voice was pained.  "Adam."
"No, Kris!"  Adam stood up then and moved away, pushing a hand through his hair and then turning back to Kris.  "I want you.  You want me.  It's that simple.  This isn't wrong, Kris."
Kris got to his feet as well.  "I know it isn't wrong, but it's not simple, either."
"Yes, it is!"
"No, it isn't.  We have our careers to think about, and our friendship—"
"Don't give me that crap. 'Your friendship is too good to lose—'"
"It is!  Adam, tell me about Brad.  Tell me about Sauli.  Tell me about Patrick or Anthony or Gabriel or Alexander or Jason.  Things didn't last for you, they didn't work out, and everything was a huge mess when it ended!"
"Oh, that's real rich, pointing out every boy I've loved over the past ten years.  At least I wasn't married.  I knew I didn't want to spend the rest of my life with any of them."
"I did want to spend the rest of my life with her!  She just didn't want to spend it with me." 
Adam looked at him evenly, not saying anything because there really wasn't anything for him to say. 
"Adam," Kris said finally, "I want my music back.  For the first time in a long time, I have a chance of getting it, and I don't want to lose it.  I can't."
Adam seemed to deflate them, and even though he didn't look particularly happy about it, he nodded.  "Alright."
"Yeah.  I bugged you to death about following your dreams; it'd be pretty hypocritical of me to say the opposite now."
Top 11
Hollywood, CA
The shriek caught Kris's attention and his head swung up just in time to see a black blur topped with red flames throw itself at Adam.  Allison had arrived. 
Kris stood back as Adam swung her around in a circle and as soon as she was set down, Allison launched herself at Kris.  He laughed and hugged her back. 
"It's so good to see you!" she cried out, standing back to take them both in.  "How are you guys?"
As Adam answered her, Kris looked her over.  He could still see the funny young girl he had met eight years before, but she was only part of the beautiful woman standing in front of him.  Allison was taller, wearing shredded jeans and a black shirt, and her hair was red again. 
"Your hair looks great," Kris said. 
"Oh, thanks!"  Allison smiled at him.  "I think the red fits me right now."
Kris nodded.  "Everything fits you."
She grinned again, showing all her straight white teeth. 
The three of them spent the night at Adam's, something that was quickly becoming a regular event.  Allison told stories from the road and about recording her new album.  The first single was doing extremely well, and she was scheduled to perform on Idol before leaving for the tour.  There was talk about singing with Kris and Adam too, if they had time to put something together. 
"And when Jared and I hooked up, I thought things would be weird with the band and all."  Jared was Allison's lead guitarist.  "But it's totally not!  And it's great having him around all the time when I'm on tour.  I remember when I was dating Braden and being a country away from him for months at a time was awful.  Not this time around!" 
Kris smiled at her and ignored the pointed look from Adam.  Kris wasn't concerned about destroying his friendship with Adam or ruining their professional relationship.  Honestly, he figured that dating Adam would destroy any chance he had of a comeback in his career, and he couldn't risk it when everything was still so fragile.  Adam would just have to deal with it. 
Top 10
Hollywood, CA
As he waited in the rafters above the stage listening to the opening synths of "Sing," Kris was having serious second thoughts.  A My Chemical Romance song?  Who was he kidding?  Allison was punk; this song was right in her range.  And Adam was glam rock, he could adapt to anything.  But Kris… What was Kris?  He was going to be a lame sidekick taking up space on stage while Adam and Allison battled it out. 
It started with Allison and Adam alone on a fog covered stage, looking beautiful and individual.  Kris adjusted his harness, wondering how he had been talked into this, and as the drums got heavy, he jumped off the rigging.  As soon as his toes touched the stage, it exploded in flames and he burst into the chorus with Adam and Allison. 
It was absolutely amazing.  He never thought he had it in him, never thought he could hold a candle to Allison or Adam except for 'in his own way.'  But this… This was something else entirely. 
For the bridge, the three of them battled their way through the lyrics, fighting each other, and then erupted into the final chorus.  It was phenomenal, and Kris had never known anything like it.
Allison and Adam were both hugging each other when Kris got off the stage, and he walked straight up to Adam, grabbed his shoulder, spun him around, and kissed him long and hard on the mouth. 
He went home alone with Adam that night, promising to spend the next day with Allison before she caught her flight out, and within minute, he was facedown on Adam's bed, Adam's long fingers pushing in and out of his ass. 
"Oh, God, Adam.  Fuck.  Adam."
"Yeah, I know.  I know."
Kris smiled into the pillow, but an instant later, he was shuddering as he felt Adam's tongue hot and wet in his hole.  "Jesus, fuck, Adam!" he shouted, his back arching for more.  Adam took hold of his cheeks, spreading him further, and continued to assault his senses until Kris didn't think he could take any more.  "Please, Adam, please.  Please, please, Adam, please!"
Adam turned him over then, slicking up and sliding into Kris's body, locking eyes with him the whole time.  Kris tried to keep his eyes open as Adam thrust into him, but the sensation was too much.  He felt full, whole, completed, like he was part of something more.  How had sex never felt like this before?  "Adam," he sighed, and pulled Adam down for a kiss. 
The kissed messily as Adam continued pushing into him, and Kris hitched his legs as high as he could around Adam's back, rocking to meet him.
"Yes, Adam, yes, yes, yes!  Jesus, fuck Adam!"  Kris screamed as he came, Adam coming seconds later.  He'd never been a screamer, ever, but with Adam…
"Holy shit, Adam," he gasped as Adam pulled out and dropped down next to him. 
"Yeah."  Adam smiled at him, sweat covered, his hair a mess, and Kris had never seen anything so beautiful.  "Couldn't have said it better myself." 
Kris smiled and wrapped his arms around Adam, snuggling against him as he fell asleep. 
Top 9
Hollywood, CA
Adam's band got together to record a couple demos with Kris, and it felt like he'd been reborn.  The music was flowing through him, running in his blood and circling in his head, but it was a new song that he'd never thought belonged to him before.  It was beautiful and passionate and alive; it was a song of creation and recognition.  Song after song had a new beat Kris had thought he'd lost, lyrics more personal than the ones he'd sold out with for his 'hit' second album.  It was exciting, with a bit of a soul punk edge, and it was the most exhilarating Kris had ever felt. 
Adam's band members were cool too.  Kris had never spent any time with them, but he recognized them on sight.  First off, they were Adam's band, so Kris was fairly familiar with their faces from their time on TV and YouTube.  There was Tommy, who everyone in the world recognized as one half of the gay kiss that rocked MTV.  Monte had toured with Madonna, for goodness sake.  Cam was quiet but impressive, and Isaac was amazing at the drums and just as wild in real life.  Kris took to them quickly and enjoyed the time he spent joking around with them or swapping stories. 
Kris went home with Adam every night, spending long hours making sweet lazy love or wild crazy sex.  Everything inside Kris was new and alive, and he never wanted the feeling to go away.  He felt like a livewire, and it had been a long time coming. 
Top 8
Hollywood, CA
Kris set down the phone, his eyes burning, and Adam came up behind him.  Adam wrapped his arms around Kris's waist, thrusting shallowly against his ass and sucking on the side of his neck.  When Kris didn't respond, even after Adam reached down to cup Kris's dick, Adam pulled back and turned Kris to face him.  "What is it?"
Kris shook his head, not daring to look Adam in the eye. 
"Kris, tell me what's wrong."
Kris looked away as he hoarsely whispered, "The record deal fell through.  They don't want me.  It's over." 
Adam immediately shook his head.  "It's not over.  You've only just started.  We're going to make this work, we will.  If I have to march into my own label and demand they sign you—"
"Your label rejected me."
Adam was nonplussed.  "Fine.  I'll sign you myself."
Kris pulled away.  "I don't want that.  I want to know that someone believed in me enough to sign me, not just that someone did it out of pity."
"I don't pity you."
"Of course you don't!  You're on top of the world and keep trying to push me to get there myself.  Well, maybe I'm not going to get there, Adam.  Maybe this is what I was meant to do, write songs for other artists for the rest of my life just get a taste of what I want but can't have."
Adam took hold of Kris's shoulders, hard.  "Don't you say that.  Now you listen to me.  We are going back to the studio.  We're going to keep recording your demos and we will bring them to every label in the country, a dozen times over if we have to.  We'll make them see what I see in you."
Kris hung his head.  "I felt special, Adam.  I finally felt like I was good enough."
"You are good enough."
"Make me believe it, Adam.  Show it to me."
In his bedroom, Adam went down on Kris, deepthroating him as Kris moaned above him, his fingers in Adam's hair.  Adam went still until Kris fucked his throat like he wanted to and swallowed him down as he came.  He played with Kris then, exploring every inch of his body and torturing every sweet spot he found.  When Kris was hard again, Adam slicked him up and pushed inside, fucking Kris long and slow with steady hard thrusts directly to his prostate.  He held Kris to him as he buried himself in Kris's body, pushing hard and filling Kris so completely.  Kris cried with Adam inside him, overwhelmed with all the sensations coursing through him, not knowing what to do with all the emotion except to let it out. 
Later that night, he cried again as Adam spooned him, fucking into him slowly from behind and holding Kris tightly against his chest.   
Top 7
Hollywood, CA
"Have you thought about how you want to do it?"
"Do what?" Kris looked up at Adam from the other side of the table.  There they were, eating dinner together; they were so domestic. 
"Come out."
Kris gagged, choking on his parmigiani.  "What?" he gasped out.  "Why?"
Adam gave him a peculiar look.  "You need to come out eventually.  If not to the public, then to your family.  And you really should think about coming out to the fans, too.  The community always needs more role models to look up to."
"I think you, Elton, and Gaga have that down, thanks."
Adam made a face.  "As much as it kills me to say this, but the kids could use someone a bit more—well, someone normal to look up to.  It's all well and good for them to be creative and express themselves, but they're not all going to grow up and make a living wearing latex.  They're going to be normal people with normal lives.  You know.  Careers, families, friends.  They're going to be happy, and you can have all that, without—"
"Without wearing purple suits or rubber bras?"
Adam smiled.  "I wouldn't stop you if you wanted to." 
Kris burst out laughing, but the thought of coming out stayed heavy in his mind. 
Top 6
Hollywood, CA
Kris praised Sarah for her performance during the Top 6, commenting on her beautiful voice and charming smile.  That night, though, when he went out alone to walk through the city, he had second thoughts.  Maybe he wasn't doing the right thing to encourage her.  She was beautiful, she had a lovely voice, and she had a sweet personality, but these things weren't enough to make her into anything.  Hadn't people said the same about Kris?  He was handsome, he was sweet, he had a nice voice.  America was looking for a freak with quirks.  They wanted someone who demanded attention, someone who caused a riot, someone who rubbed against the grain. 
Sarah wasn't anything special, and neither was Kris. 
He wasn't Adam.  He didn't have a gay agenda to propagate.  His presence didn't turn heads and make people stop whatever they were doing and pay attention.  His voice didn't give people chills or cause millions of people to fantasize about him. 
Kris had a beautiful voice, but it didn't stand out.  He was just another good-looking guy singing about the girl he loved.  He was just one of a million others, all doing the same thing and getting nowhere with it. 
Kris had to face the reality that he was nothing special, and his dreams of living his music and sharing it with the world were unrealistic and unattainable.  It was over for him, if it had ever started to begin with. 
Top 5
Hollywood, CA
Kris pushed through the crowd outside the Idol theater.  They were haters waiting for Adam; they always were.  Dozens of them with signs and shirts and slogans, all proclaiming how Adam was going to burn in hell, how he was sinful and disgusting, how he should be ashamed of himself, and wishing him dead.  Kris shoved through them all, ignoring their shouts but unable to ignore the fact that if he kept going down his current path, one day there would be crowds of his own shouting slander against him.  One day, sooner rather than later if he kept things up with Adam, he wouldn't be able to go to work, he wouldn't even be able to leave his house, without a throng of torches and pitchforks waiting for him, egging him on to his demise, encouraging him to give in to their demands, degrading him and breaking him down, reiterating every painful truth he hoped to avoid.  It was hard enough to deal with the voices in his own head, much less giving them faces and banners as well.
"I'm just so fucking sick of it!" Kris burst out as he slammed open the door of the makeup room. 
Adam was already there, lining his eyes in cobalt and ebony, and he glanced up at Kris.  "Sick of what?"
"Your fucking hazers everywhere, saying nasty shit."
"My hazers?  They're your hazers too—or they will be."
"Maybe I don't want them to be."
Adam froze.  "What are you saying?"
"Maybe I don't want this."
"It's not something you pick, Kris." 
"This isn't my life, Adam.  I don't want it."
Adam just stared at him for a moment, then exploded, getting up in Kris's face as he shouted, "Fuck, Kris.  Fuck you!  They all told me I was crazy.  You can bend a straight boy but you can't make him gay—he'll go back to straight in the end and dump you on your ass."
"Oh, fuck you, Adam!"
"No!  Because I was right.  This was just a fling for you.  You just wanted some of my fame, some of my success, some of my happiness, because you couldn't get any for yourself, because you threw all yours away."
Kris gaped at him.  "Fuck you, you fucking asshole!  You don't know shit about me and you never did.  Get the fuck out of my life."  Kris shoved him and stalked out of the room.
Top 4
Hollywood, CA
The next few week was miserable.  Adam and Kris didn't speak and there was obvious tension between them behind the judges' table.  Derek was in the bottom too, and Kris was afraid that if he was sent home, Adam might explode.  Not that he cared anyway.  If Sarah beat Adam's pet, then all the better for Kris.  Maybe then Adam would see that you didn't have to shove your lifestyle down other people's throats. 
Kris made plans with his agent to get him in the studio with a few other artists.  He was going to write songs and sell them to other people; his singing days were over.  His manager agreed that this was the best possible route for him and all he could hope for now. 
Adam called up his manager as well and scheduled some studio time.  He had a successful album to write and record and didn't have a moment to waste.  He'd show Kris that sitting around on his ass wouldn't get him anywhere in life and that Adam was going to be happy and successful without him.  He wasn't going to let Kris jerk him around on a leash anymore. 
Derek was safe, as was Sarah, and both were headed into the Top 3.  Only two more weeks, and Kris and Adam would never have to see each other again; wisely, they had both only signed up to judge Idol for one season.  They didn't want to spend another minute together if not necessary by contract. 
Top 3
Hollywood, CA
Kris and Adam were to open the Top 3 show with a duet, if they could get their act together and work on it.  Kris let Adam do all the work—picking the song, working the arrangement.  He just took his music and left to work on his part alone. 
He and Adam were scheduled to do a run through with the techs Tuesday morning, as were the other Idol contestants, and on his way down the hallway, Kris pulled up short at a shocking sigh.  Derek and Sarah were sitting on the floor together, Sarah between Derek's legs and leaning back against his chest, their fingers intertwined in Sarah's lap. 
"No fucking way."
They both glanced up at him, taken by surprise, and began to pull apart.  He waved a hand at them.  "Don't mind me.  Jesus Christ."  He walked out on the stage and finished the run through as quickly as possible. 
The duet sucked.  It sucked in practice, and it sucked on live TV.  Adam was pissed and hurt, and Kris didn't care.  He wanted to get as far away from music as he possible could.  He wasn't a singer and he wasn't a musician, not anymore.  He was going to write songs for other artists and never sing again.  This was it for him. 
Later in the show, he watched the videos of the contestants returning to their hometowns and was surprised to see Derek and Sarah wearing matching bracelets with each other's names on them.  "I wanted her to have something to remember me by," Derek answered when Ryan asked about it, and Sarah smiled at him.  On live TV, Sarah leaned over and kissed him. 
Kris remembered his own time on Idol when he'd returned home with a blue-painted thumbnail—to remember Adam by.  Here, these two crazy kids, even more different than he and Adam, were following in their footsteps.  The two kids seemed to be doing a hell of a lot better job than he and Adam had done and certainly much better than he and Adam were doing still. 
He glanced over at Adam who was running the pad of a finger over his thumbnail, and knew Adam was remembering the same. 
That night, when Kris pushed through the hazers, their shouts moved him to take action, not to run and hide. 
Hollywood, CA
Kris kept busy for the following week.  He fired his manager and got a new one, one who could do what Kris wanted him to do.  He made plans and took action.  And once things were in order, or some semblance thereof, he went to talk to Adam. 
"No, let me say this," Kris said when Adam tried to shut the door in his face. 
Adam sighed and let him in. 
"I signed with an idie label.  I've got full control of my music and full control of my image and any publicity I want.  And I'm going to keep writing for other artists.  I'm taking control of my life, Adam, and I want you in it."
Adam just looked at him, processing, so Kris repeated, "I want you in my life."
Adam shook his head slowly.  "I don't—that's great for you, Kris.  I'm happy for you; I think this is going to be really good for you.  But all the reasons you didn't want this—being gay in the media, the fans reaction, the hazers—those things aren't going away.  They're all still there, and no matter where we go or what we do, they always will be.  I can't change that."
Kris shrugged.  "I don't need you to.  Whether I'm out or not, those are my hazers too, and for the first time in my life, they inspired me instead of making me feel afraid.  I'm going to write music that means something; I'm going to stand for something.  I'm going to be who I am, and I won't let the hazers make me run away or turn me into a rubber wearing diva.  I know who I am and who I want."
"And you want me?" Adam asked softly.
"Always." When Kris saw the acceptance in Adam's eyes, he reached up to hug him.  He didn't feel like he needed to complete him anymore.  He was his own person; he was whole.  He wasn't half of a whole, but he was a whole that could create something even more with the whole person that Adam was and had always been. 
"I want to change our duet song," Kris said.  "I want to come out."
Adam's eyes widened.  "On stage, in front of the entire world, before you've even told your family?"
Kris shook his head.  "I flew home four days ago and told my family.  They're good with it.  And the rest of the world will be too, or they suck my dick—or not, you know, whatever."
Adam shook his head.  "Coming out on stage?  You keep this up and you'll be a feather wearing freak in no time."
Kris grinned.  "Don't hold your breath."
Kris and Adam debuted a Kris Allen original the next night on the American Idol finale, shocking the world not unlike Adam had done when he had kissed Tommy years before—just without the graphic sexuality that Adam brought with him everywhere.  It was a beautiful heartfelt love song that expressed everything inside Kris, showing himself to the world for the first time. 
Sarah and Derek were the final two, just like Kris and Adam had been, but this time around, the edgy rocker won—only to propose to his girlfriend on live TV as the confetti fell around them. 
"I'm sorry, the traffic was terrible."
Adam smiled at Kris's lack of a hello and kissed him anyway.  "It's okay.  How was your day?" 
Kris grinned.  "Amazing."  He stretched out his shoulders.  "Tour practice is brutal, but I'm excited to ship out in two weeks."
"Are you sure you don’t need me to lend you my dancers?  What about my top hat?"
Kris laughed and kissed Adam gently.  "No thanks, hun.  You can wear the hat yourself if you want to.  I'll watch for you in the crowd."
"The crowd?  What kind of groupie do you think I am?  I'll be waiting sidestage so I can ravage you the minute your set is over."
"Oh yeah?" Kris cocked an eyebrow.  "What kind of ravaging did you have in mind?"
Adam showed him, repeatedly, in several rooms of the house and on multiple surfaces, and Kris had to agree—he certainly preferred a boyfriend who would ravage him.  A groupie just couldn't show him the unquestionable love Adam could.  It was strange to think that he had started this road eight years before when he had first seen Adam smile at him during an early round of American Idol.  In the end, his journey after Idol might have been rougher than the glamorous paths of other winners, but he wouldn't have had it any other way.


Not What You Signed Up For

Title: Not What You Signed Up For
Author: GwenCarmichael
Pairing: Frank/Gerard
Rating: NC-17
Word Count: 2184
mcr_bingo prompt: First—Topping
Beta: cinnamoretti
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary: Bert has messed Gerard up, and Frank helps him get through it.
Author's Note: Bert McCracken is not the asshole I've written him as in this story, and if he is, I don't want to know.   

Not What You Signed Up For
Gerard tangled his fingers with Frank's as they walked back to the bus after a late-night dinner—or early morning breakfast—somewhere in the northeast. He loved how comfortable and relaxed he felt around Frank, how Frank never pressured him or made demands. Frank was an easy going guy, and what was more, he cared.
They'd been dating for a while, having gotten together some time after Bert had realized sober Gerard wouldn't worship the ground he walked on or get so drunk he'd let Bert fuck him dry. Frank and Gerard had progressed to the point where sex was the next logical step, and that was when they realized Bert had messed Gerard up pretty bad. For the time being, sex was off the menu, and every so often, Gerard would randomly mention some scarring experience. Telling Frank each story healed Gerard bit by bit, and Frank was moved every time with just how much Gerard trusted him.
The pair of them stretched out in the front of the bus, assuming that the cries of 'Die, Mikey, just die already!' and 'Bob Bryar, I'm going to shoot you in the head!' were just the guys playing video games, not actually murdering each other. If they were short a bass player or a drummer at the next show, they'd consider themselves corrected.
Frank pulled Gerard against his chest and ran fingers through his freshly—well, recently—washed hair.
"Bert wasn't really into this part of the sub/dom relationship," Gerard said softly, his eyes closed.
Frank tilted his chin to watch him but didn't interrupt.
"It was never right for us anyway. There were times when I was too drunk or too scared to go under, and he'd get pissed. Even if I did it right, he didn't really care too much for the after part. He usually just passed out."
"If you were scared of him, how did you go under, ever?"
Gerard shrugged against Frank's belly. "I was drunk most of the time, or on something. And I like being under, trusting someone else with my life, even if I was scared of him."
Frank made a little noise and Gerard went still. "Do you think I'm a bad person?"
"What? No, of course not. Never. I just, I don't know how you did it—put yourself under, trusted him, even though you were scared of him. I couldn't do it."
"You're not a sub, Frankie."
"Screw being a sub or a dom. Sex is a lot of fucking trust."
"Yeah, it is." Gerard sighed. "Thanks for putting up with this, Frankie."
"I'm not putting up with anything, Gerard," Frank said firmly.
"You know what I mean. I know it's gotta suck for you."
Frank snorted. "Going without sex never killed anyone. I've got dozens of men I grew up around as proof—Catholic school boy, remember?"
Gerard laughed. "Still, thank you, Frankie. I know this isn't what you thought you were getting yourself into."
"I came into this with an open mind, Gee. No expectations. I'm not just here to fuck."
"Yeah." Gee smiled and burrowed his head more comfortably against Frank's chest. "I know."

After leaving the gas station bathroom, Gerard filled a tray with coffees as Frank filled the counter with junk food. Bob was scouting for new movies while Ray picked up postcards and maybe—probably—a hat he'd never wear. Mikey was standing outside talking on the phone to someone, maybe Pete.
Gerard ambled over to Frank to place his vote on which chips were better and found himself saying, "Bert used to leave me in bathrooms."
"What?" Frank asked, caught by surprise.
"In gas stations or truck stops, usually. We'd get totally wasted and he'd find us a bathroom somewhere. He'd fuck me 'til I passed out or wait 'til I passed out, then fuck me. He'd leave me there when he was done. I'd wake up in a bathroom somewhere, and then try to figure out who to call to hook back up with the tour."
"Jesus, Gee." Forget dangerous sex games. Frank knew how stupidly dangerous it was to leave anyone passed out in a bathroom, much less Gerard fucking Way. "He left you in truck stop bathrooms?"
Gerard shrugged.
"So, you never got drunk and then just got lost?"
Gerard snorted. "I did that, too. Just not very often. I just said I did."
He grabbed a bag of licorice, and Frank couldn't help but stare wide-eyed as Gerard casually made his way to the counter. Frank had thought he was a crazy messed up fucker, but Gerard, Gerard took it to a whole new level, one that freaked Frank out a little bit.

"Bert liked enema."
Frank looked up from his cereal. It was midmorning on the bus ride to God-knew-where, and even though they hadn't been on the subject of sex or any liquids in anyone's ass, Gerard blurted out one of his sexual experimentations with Bert. Frank swallowed his cereal. "Yeah, I know what that is."
"Have you ever done it? Or had it done to you?"
Frank shook his head.
"It hurts like a motherfucker," Gerard said bitterly, eyes hard. "And it's humiliating as shit. But Bert liked it, so…"
"So you did it."
"Well, yeah. It's not—There's some pain I like, okay? But this, there was nothing sexy about it. I'd cramp up so bad and get nothing out of it and then Bert always watched it all drain out of me. So fucking humiliating…"
"I don't think filling my ass with water got him hot, not really. He just liked to hurt me, watch me be embarrassed as fuck. Sadism, fine, whatever. I told him I hated it, that it didn't do anything for me, and I think that just made him like it more."
Frank continued eating his cereal, but his full attention was on Gerard. His stomach was tight and he didn't think he'd be able to keep his breakfast down, but if he stopped, it would make Gerard uncomfortable.
"I never want to do that again, ever." Gerard hesitated for a moment and glanced at Frank through his eyelashes, adding, "But, if you want me to…"
Frank shook his head. "No. I don't want to do that, and even if I did, I would never ask you to do something you didn't want to do."
Gerard blushed a little and looked down. "Thanks," he mumbled.
"It's nothing."
"Yeah, it is."
Where Gerard was concerned, it meant the world.

"I think the worst part about everything Bert did to me was that I liked it."
Frank glanced up at Gerard, mouth full of waffles, eyes wide. "What?"
Gerard shrugged. "Some of it sucked. It always sucks to wake up alone, especially in the middle of God knows where. I didn't like that shit. But the rest of it? I like it rough; I like it to hurt a little bit. I like it when a guy can just fuck my face, you know? Bert just took it to extremes."
Gerard held up a hand. "Wait, okay? I know what you're gonna say. But that's what I like."
Frank shook his head. "That's not what I was gonna say."
"I was gonna say that I like to try stuff too, you know? But no matter what, no matter what stupid roleplay or kink we're trying, I'm never going to hurt you—really hurt you, I mean. I'm never going to leave you somewhere or fuck you when you're unconscious. I'm never going to get mad if you can't go under, or don't feel okay with it, or if you want to dom me. I'm never going to be Bert, Gerard, ever. I swear to you, I'm not."
Gerard watched him solemnly, his eyes open and trusting. "I know, Frankie."
"Do you?"
Gerard paused for a moment, then nodded. "Yeah. Yeah, I do know. You're not Bert; you're never going to be. You're everything he never was for me. You give a shit about me; you want what's best for me. You care, Frankie."
"Yeah, I do," Frank said quietly.
"I care, too."
Frank nodded immediately, a small smile on his mouth. "I know."
"I trust you."
"I know that, too. It takes a whole fucking lot of trust to tell someone all the things you've told me."
Frank smiled at him.
"I love you."
"I know."
"This isn't Star Wars. This is where you tell me you love me too, asshole."
"'I love you too, asshole.'" Frank grinned wide at him.
Gerard rolled his eyes. "Yeah, I'm feeling the love."
Frank pushed back his grin, leaned forward, and looked straight into Gerard's eyes. "I love you, Gerard Way," he said in a soft, even voice, and Gerard was pretty sure either his heart was about to explode or the butterflies were going to eat their way out of his stomach.

"I'm ready," Gerard said, sitting down beside Frank on the hotel bed.
Frank's eyes widened slightly. "Are you sure?"
Gerard nodded. "I've been thinking about it a lot. I love you. I trust you. I'm ready."
"I've been thinking about it a lot, too."
"Yeah." Frank watched Gerard carefully, wanting to gauge his reaction. "I think you should fuck me."
For a moment, Gerard didn't react at all. Then he blinked and drew his eyebrows together. "What? Why?"
"Bert was an ass to you," Frank said flatly. "He hurt you, and he used you. I will never do that to you, ever."
"I know, Frankie."
"So I want you to fuck me, at least the first time."
Gerard shook his head. "Frankie, I've never—you know. I've never topped before."
Frank's eyes widened. "Never?"
Gerard shook his head and quoted, "'Too sassy to top.'" He snorted. "More like, 'too drunk and stupid.'"
"Hey," Frank said. "Don't do that."
Gerard just shrugged, not meeting Frank's eyes.
"I want you to fuck me, Gee. Do you want to?"
"What if I fuck it up?"
"As long as the 'up' is me, that's kind of the point," Frank joked.
Gerard elbowed him. "You know what I mean."
Frank smiled. "I’m not worried. Gerard—" He waited until Gerard met his eyes. "—I would love to be the first person you ever fuck. But I'm not going to ask you to do something you don't want to do."
Gerard watched him carefully. "Frank Iero, what the fuck are you doing with me?"
"Trying to make you realize I'm in love with you," Frank replied, his voice soft and sure.
Frank smiled. "Head over heels. Forever."
Gerard smiled. "I've got lube in my bag."
Frank's smile widened. "I've got a bottle in pretty much everything I own, just in case."
Gerard laughed and Frank kissed him, one hand cupping Gerard's jaw, the other resting on his hip. Gerard threaded his fingers in Frank's hair, hauling him closer.
Frank's lips were warm and soft and perfect, his tongue hot and slick as he climbed onto Gerard's lap and attacked his mouth. He rocked against Gerard, making him moan, and slid a hand up under Gerard's shirt, his fingers warm and firm on Gerard's skin.
Gerard pushed Frank back and tugged off his shirt. Frank got the idea and pulled his own over his head before Gerard knocked him back onto the mattress. Running his fingers over Frank's colored skin, Gerard mouthed across his chest, nipping, licking, and sucking. Frank groaned when Gerard got to his nipples and tugged them with his teeth.
"C'mon, Gee," Frank panted. "C'mon."
Gerard unbuckled Frank's jeans and pulled them off along with his underwear and then struggled out of his own. Digging out a bottle of lube from his bag, his only thought was to spread Frank open—until he was distracted by the sight Frank's red and swollen mouth. He slipped his tongue along Frank's, groaning as he rubbed off against Frank's cock, moaning as Frank's fingers grappled over his sweaty skin.
He pulled away, inching down Frank's body and slicking his fingers with lube. Frank spread his legs, and Gerard slowly pressed a finger inside him. He could hear Frank making sounds above him, but all he could do was stare, mesmerized by the way his finger disappeared into Frank's body. He went slow and took his time, watching with wide eyes and an open mouth.
By the time Gerard had three fingers inside him, Frank was writhing. "Please, Gerard. I can't—I need you. Next time we'll go as slow as you want, I promise, but this time, I need—please."
"Okay, Frankie." Gerard came up, kissed Frank gently, and caught Frank's choked exhale as he slid inside.
Frank didn't last long, coming untouched well before Gerard.
As Gerard lay tangled with Frank after, he whispered, "Was that okay?"
Frank made a choking sound. "Any idiot who didn't beg you to fuck him doesn't know what he's missing. Best of my life."
Gerard smiled. "Yeah, me too."
Frank kissed him. "I love you."
"I love you, too."

Prove It

Title: Prove It 
Author: GwenCarmichael
Pairing: Mikey/Brian
Rating: PG
Word Count: 4674
mcr_bingo prompt: Kink—Piercings
Beta: cinnamoretti
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary: After Brian talks Gerard down from suicide, Mikey sees him as more than just their manager. 
Prove It
When Gerard got clean and sober, things changed.
They were all back on the bus, in the summer heat, on the road touring again. That was the norm, but everything was different. There was no alcohol anywhere. It was to be expected, really, but Mikey was still caught off guard at times. Just a month before, the mini fridge had been stocked full of beer and the trash had been overflowing with cans, bottles, and plastic cups. Throughout the bus, unwashed clothing that had been the victim of a beverage spill gave off the smell of alcohol; dirty cans had been set on various surfaces. The bus had been full of empty containers and the lingering smell of alcohol.
Now, there was not a drop of booze to be found. No cans, no bottles, no dirty cups. The smell was gone, too. The bus had been meticulously cleaned so that there were no remains anywhere.
The meds were cleaned off the counters as well. Everyone on tour was on some kind of pills. Frank was always dying of something, so he was generally on one antibiotic or another. Aspirin, Tylenol, and any other pills for cramps, or pain of any kind that one could assume while touring, had never been hidden away. They were left out on counters and tables, left lying in open cupboards and any other convenient surface.
Not anymore. Anyone who needed pills kept them stashed in their bunks or in their private bags, out of sight and, theoretically, out of mind.
There was a new face to get used to as well. Bob fucking Bryar, sound man extraordinaire who had somehow been convinced to join their messed up group of miscreants was filling in the place of their new drummer. It was less than ideal timing for him to try to fit in; everything was new and different and uncertain. Bob was doing extremely well, though, considering the recent upheaval. He was quiet and unassuming, but he didn't take any shit. It was a welcome change from the previous months of denial and avoidance.
Finally, Brian had joined them on tour. It was only temporary, he assured them, just a precaution to keep an eye on Gerard and make sure he was okay, to be close by if he needed any help of any kind. Brian was keeping an eye on Bob too, making sure he settled in with the group and was alright with the sudden changes in his own life. He was making sure they would all be able to settle into this new clean—drug and alcohol free, if not actually clean—existence without any mishaps or slipups.
Everything was different. The guys didn't give up drinking, not completely, but they certainly never got shit wrecked around Gerard. If they wanted a drink, they went out and did it privately, out of Gerard's sight, and made sure to get rid of the smell before coming back to the bus. No matter what Frank was dying of, he never took any pills or sleep medicine in front of Gerard; even if it killed him, he moved to the back of the bus to take the drugs and then returned to his space.
Everything was different. Mikey had to watch himself in a way he had never had to before, had to make sure he didn't say or do the wrong thing around Gerard, but it was worth it because every time he looked in Gerard's eyes, he saw Gerard. He didn't see blank empty eyes that barely recognized him; he didn't see falsely adoring eyes that clung to him. He didn't see Gerard staggering around, sneaking away from them, puking his guts out. All he saw was his big brother, and no matter what changed, no matter what stupid things he had to remember, he would never give up the chance to have his brother back.
For the first few days, it seemed that everyone was caught off guard when they woke up to find Brian already drinking his coffee, or when they heard Brian snoring as they tried to sleep. Everyone seemed to get used to it and get over it by day three. Mikey, however, wasn't getting over anything.
That was his first clue that something was going on.
When Brian passed him on the way back to the bunks, Mikey almost jumped out of his skin. Brian gave him a strange look and mouthed 'sorry' at him before returning his full attention to whoever he was on the phone with.
Later, when they all crashed together to watch a movie—'Bonding with Bryar' as Gerard called it—Mikey found himself tracing random shapes on his forearms while staring at Brian. It was then that he realized he was drawing Brian's tattoos on his own arm with his fingers.
He just about had it figured out by the time that he became hyper-aware of Brian's presence. If Brian was standing nearby, Mikey was acutely aware of just how much space was between them, how close together they were. Not only that, but the closer Brian was, the louder his heart pounded and the harder it was to breathe.
When he started dreaming about Brian, there were no more questions. He wanted Brian.
You don't fuck your bandmates. Mikey was pretty sure that that was the number one rule—or at least in the top ten—when it came to bands. The easiest way to fuck up a band was to fuck someone else in it—fuck them, or date them. He wasn't sure it was forbidden to date the manager, but it had to be pretty frowned upon. It would just look bad. The world would either think he was trying to get favors or that fucking was in their contracts, and even though Mikey didn't give a shit what the world thought, his band's opinions still mattered to him, a lot.
He was pretty sure none of them would support him fucking management.
He told himself that it was just a crush; it was just adoration. Brian had saved Gerard's life. Brian was the reason his brother was still alive. It was only natural to feel what he felt—natural and temporary.
He gave up on that attempt pretty quickly. He adored and looked up to a lot of people—Gerard, his mom, Morrissey—but he didn't want to fuck any of them, thank God. The more he thought about it, the more he realized he didn't just want to fuck Brian. He wanted a whole lot more.

Brian was not oblivious to the fact that Mikey wanted to spend more time with him than he ever had during their years as band-and-manager. He certainly wasn't complaining. Mikey was cool, he showered slightly more than Gerard, and he didn't yap Brian's ear off, steal his phone, or sit on him. There were other reasons—reasons more profound than Mikey not being a pain in the ass—that he liked Mikey's attention, but he had spent a fair amount of time not thinking about those reasons and saw no reason to start.
These reasons might have included Mikey's laugh, Mikey's smile, Mikey's general awkwardness, Mikey's strange habits, Mikey's geeky coolness (and other oxymorons), and the fact that Brian was in love with him. These reasons would have come to mind if Brian was not religiously repressing them with a steadfast severity.
It did no good to think about Mikey as anything more than a member of the band he managed, as a friend. That was what he and Mikey would always be, friends, band and manager, always. That was more than enough for most people. It might never be enough for him, but he could pretend. He could act like it was, even fool himself into believing it.

When Mikey asked to room with Brian on a hotel night, no one really thought anything of it. They'd all noticed Mikey drawing closer to Brian and just assumed it was because of Gerard, for Mikey and for Brian. Mikey was Gerard's brother, and Brian… Brian had been on the other end of the phone to keep Gerard from killing himself. If they were getting closer, they had more than enough reason.
In the hotel room, Mikey sat at the foot of his bed, feeling awkward and unsure. He'd decided to tell Brian, he'd been so sure, but now, now that it was time…
"What the fuck is it, Mikey Way?"
Mikey glanced up at Brian, dressed in sleep pants and a t-shirt after his shower.
"What's going on?"
Mikey shrugged. "Nothing."
"Liar." Brian lay down on his own bed, facing Mikey on his side.
"I'm not lying."
"Fuck that. I've known you for two years. I know when you're lying to me."
Mikey shrugged.
"Come on, Mikey. It can't be that bad."
"Yeah, it could," Mikey muttered.
Brian sat up, hearing the seriousness in his voice. "Did Gerard slip up?"
"No! Of course not."
"Do you have a drinking problem?"
"Drugs? Pills?"
"No." Mikey shook his head. "It's not like that."
"Then just tell me, Mikey."
"I like you, okay?"
Then there was silence.
"You mean, like…"
"Yeah." Mikey hung his head. "Like that."
Brian choked out a laugh. "Good one, Mikey."
Mikey's cheeks flushed and his eyes burned when he looked at Brian. "I'm not joking around, Brian."
Brian swallowed hard, and when that didn't help, he did it again. There was no way— "Don't worry about it, Mikey." His voice was strained, even though he was attempting nonchalance. "It's natural. It'll go away."
"I don't want it to go away," Mikey said quietly.
Brian thought he was going to choke on air; his lungs and heart weren't functioning properly. "It's okay, Mikey." Comfort Mikey? He could do that. He was the fucking manager; it was in the job description. "You'll grow out of it, I promise."
"No." Mikey shook his head, stubborn. "It won't go away. I've tried, okay? I like you. I can't stop thinking about you, about your tattoos, your lip ring, your hands, your eyes. Fuck, Brian, you're all I can think about, all the time."
Fuck. Fucking fuck. Fuck again. Brian was getting hard hearing this from Mikey. After all this time, now? "Why now, Mikey?"
Mikey ducked his head. "You saved Gee's life. My brother is alive because of you. I guess I just started paying more attention to you, and what I saw… Fuck, Brian. I know it's messed up. I know it's wrong. I know—"
"No, Mikey. There's nothing wrong with you. It's fine."
"Do you…?"
Oh, God. What was Brian supposed to say to that? The truth? 'Yes, Mikey, I've jerked off thinking about you more times than I can count?' He had spent months protecting himself, and he wasn't about to throw that all out the window over some crush. "Mikey, listen to me." He mentally congratulated himself on sounding level-headed; his manager voice was creeping in but it was still working. "It's perfectly natural. It's like hero worship or something, you know? You look up to someone, you admire someone, it's natural to think it's something more than it is. But that's all it is, Mikey. You just have a crush, I promise, that's all there is between us. That's it."
"You—oh. Okay." He turned away so Brian couldn't see his face.
Mikey wasn't going to cry, was he? Oh God. Brian stood up. "I'm going to go get some magazines. You want anything?"
Mikey just shook his head, not looking at him. As Brian walked past, he wanted more than anything just to reach out to Mikey, to put a hand on his shoulder to comfort him, but that would only make it worse for both of them.
Outside the hotel, he walked down the sidewalk toward a gas station. Mikey didn't love him; his feelings weren't real. He was thankful to Brian and thought that it was something more. It wasn't. Eventually, Mikey would've come to realize that and he would've run. If Brian gave in and let himself be with Mikey, he would just be setting himself up for heartbreak. This was best, for both of them. Mostly for himself.

The next day, Brian left the tour. He acted all nonchalant, saying that Gerard was as clean as a nun (in the drug and alcohol area, certainly nowhere else) and Bob was practically family, so his job was done. Mikey was the only one who knew—or thought he knew—Brian's real reasons for leaving.
Mikey indulged in what Hollywood cinema had told him was the proper medication for rejection: tubs of ice cream, throwing himself into other activities, and looking as fuckable as possible. It wasn't that he'd never experienced rejection before—hello, high school—but this was different. Brian was different. He was real; he was Mikey's friend. Now, he was gone.

The time around, the band noticed that something was going on. It wasn't that Mikey never ate ice cream, spent hours feeling out new bass lines, or looked like a wet dream. He did all of these things rather regularly. It wasn't his activities that had changed, it was Mikey himself. His silent observance had turned to broody moping; his awkward laughter had turned to careless sound. He just wasn't himself, and Brian got a call when Gerard decided he needed to do something about it.

"Hey, Gerard," Brian answered his phone after checking the ID. "What's up?"
"Brian, we need you back on tour."
Brian sat up instantly and shut off the TV. It was late on Tuesday night; Gerard's calls usually didn't come until early morning when the booze wore off or the drugs freaked him out. Immediately, Brian began making plans: what flight to catch, who on tour to call. "Are you alone? Where are you?"
"In my bunk. The guys are in the back, some kind of tourney or something."
"Okay." Brian reached for his shoes under the coffee table and stomped them on. "I want you to go back by them and tell Ray—"
"I'm fine, Brian. This isn't about me."
"Oh." Brian sat back on the couch, relaxing slightly but not completely. "Then what's going on?"
"It's Mikey."
Fear hit him in the chest for the second time that night. What had happened? Was Mikey drinking? Doing drugs? Fucking fans? "What's wrong with him?"
"I don't—" Gerard sighed. "I don't think he trusts me to be okay without you looking over my shoulder."
"What do you mean?"
"He's been weird, lately. He watches me funny and doesn't leave the bus unless we all go out. He'll let me bounce song ideas off him for hours, but I can tell he's not really listening. He wasn't like that when you were here, but now that you're gone…"
Brian sighed. Gerard saw a worried brother where Brian saw a rejected would-be lover. "He's fine, Gerard. It's not that he doesn't trust you or some other shit, okay? He and I handled it. It's fine."
"My brother is not fine." Brian could hear the steadfast determination in Gerard's voice; he would never back down where Mikey was concerned. "I need you to come back."
When Brian hung up a few minutes later, his flight out was already booked.

Back with the band, Brian's plan was simple: avoid Mikey like the plague. He slept as far away as possible and refused to share a room with Mikey even if the alternative was rooming with a hyped-up Frank or an ultra-intense Gerard. Plain 'Avoid Mikey' also involved a lot fake phone calls, intense text message conversations with himself, sudden headaches, and 'I just remembered this one thing I had to do' situations. It was pretty transparent, and Mikey called him on it.
"I know what you're doing." Mikey cornered him by the bunks one day when Brian skipped watching a movie with the band because the only seat left was beside Mikey.
For a moment, Brian considered denying it, but he decided against that pretty quickly. He also wasn't going to admit to it, so he said nothing.
"You don't have to be such a dick about it."
Mikey gave him a look, suggesting he was exemplifying the accusation just then. "I get it. You don't like dick, you don't like me, you don't like my dick—whatever. But you don't have to be a complete jack ass about it."
"I… Mikey—" He rubbed over the tattoo on the back of his neck. "Fuck it."
"I like you." He spit it out, and fuck, it actually felt kind of good to finally say it to someone.
"You what?" Mikey's voice was quiet and hesitant.
"I like you," Brian repeated. "A lot. I have for a long time."
"Then why—"
"Because you don't want me for the same reasons. Not really."
"For fuck's sake, Brian. Really? This again?"
"It's the truth."
"I liked you before you saved Gerard, okay? And either way, the fact that you saved my brother's life isn't going to go away. We'll always have that."
Brian shook his head. "That's not enough for me. I wanted you for a long time; you can want me for a while longer. You'll be fine."
Mikey gave him a determined look. "I don't want 'fine.' I want you."
Brian tried to ignore the tingle those words set off in his belly, tried to tell himself that Mikey was going to realize it was just a crush. "Then wait for me."
"What do you mean?"
"I can't—I won't let myself get involved with you if you're going to wake up one day and not feel the same."
"No, Mikey. That's just how it is. If you really want me, prove it. Wait for me."
"Okay. I will. I'll wait for you."

The next day, Mikey rolled into Brian's bunk, forcing him to make room where there really wasn't any. "What do you like about me?"
"What the fuck, Mikey?" Brian was more surprised and confused than mad. "I thought—"
"Yeah, yeah. I'm waiting for you. Did you expect me to do it on the other side of the planet? Just 'cause you don't want a 'relationship' or whatever doesn't mean we can't talk. Besides, if I stay away from you, I'll pine or whatever and that'll just make this shit worse and you'll never know if I 'get over' you."
Mikey had a point. Brian had always known Mikey was the smart one out of the pair of them. "What did you ask me?"
Mikey smiled in victory. "You said you liked me before. What do you like about me?"
Brian closed his eyes for a moment. What didn't he like about Mikey? "Your laugh," he decided on finally.
"My laugh?"
"Yeah. And your smile. And the fact that you are the coolest geek I've ever met."
Mikey gave a little laugh at that.
"See? Right there. That's why I—"
"Why you what, Brian?"
"That's why I fell for you." Brian's voice was as soft as Mikey's.
"Is it hard to say that?"
"Yes," Brian answers immediately.
Brian rubs at his face, mostly because he's lying on his back and can't get at the back of his neck. "I've spent the last two years on and off between trying to convince myself that it wasn't real, failing, and then pretending that I didn't want you."
"You could've said something."
Brian rolled onto his side to face him. "Could I have?"
Mikey doesn't answer, but they both know anyway.

"Why do you like me?"
Mikey was absently running through bass lines on his guitar as the bus drove to yet another city when Brian came and sat beside him. Mikey was a bit surprised at the question. It was fair, he thought, since he had asked Brian the same thing, but what really caught him off guard was the fact that Brian was reaching out to him.
"Your eyes."
"My eyes?"
Mikey nodded. "Yeah. Your smile, your laugh. Your tattoos, your piercings." He smiled. "I love how you can look like a little boy in a hoodie and backpack but at the same time look like you can kick my ass."
"That's 'cause I can kick your ass." Brian bumped his shoulder against Mikey's.
"Yeah, that's what you think," Mikey muttered, failing to bite back a smile.
Brian snorted. "No thinking needed. That's a fact of life. Have you seen your arms? I could snap you like a twig."
Mikey smiled distantly. "That's another thing I like about you."
Brian raised an eyebrow. "That I could snap you like a twig? I didn't know you were into that, Mikey Way."
Mikey laughed. "Not that. I like your arms. You have nice arms. And abs. Nice muscles in general. You're hot."
Brian smiled. "So, we've established that I'm a stud and you're not too bad looking yourself. Tell me something deep, something real that you like about me."
"Are you saying I'm shallow?"
"If you can't come up with something better than my amazing looks…"
"Shut up." Mikey shoved him. He thought for a moment, then quietly said. "You have a really good head on your shoulders. Even when things get crazy and fucked up as hell, you're still totally cool with it all. You can handle anything. You can be so serious and intimidating that suits will do whatever you say, but in the next minute, you're one of the guys and you're cool as fuck to hang out with. I really like that."
Brian's eyes widened just a little, like maybe, deep down, a part of him had only expected Mikey to like him for his looks.
"Who's shallow now, huh?" Mikey grinned.
"I don't just want you for your body."
"Yeah? Prove it. What you got?"
Brian looked straight into his eyes and said, "You're the most beautiful person I know."
Mikey shivered, but Brian continued. "You're sweet and funny. You're so fucking smart. I could talk to you for hours about nothing but still feel like I'm more connected to you than I've ever been to anyone else."
Mikey slowly let out the breath he'd been holding, eyes wide. When he spoke, his voice was low and a little rough. "I really want to kiss you right now."
"I always want to kiss you."
Mikey shivered again but didn't take that as an invitation, just a statement of fact. "Can I kiss you, Brian?"
Brian actually thought about it, thought about what it would finally feel like to have Mikey's mouth on his, to touch Mikey's skin with intention, what it would mean. "Yes."
When Mikey's mouth touched his, it was everything he had imagined and more. Mikey's lips were a little chapped but still soft and warm. He was gentle, oh so gentle, and a little hesitant, not wanting to push in any way. Brian slid a hand up into Mikey's hair, parting his lips just a little bit, and felt Mikey sigh into his mouth. When he pulled back, Mikey looked at him with gently lidded eyes.
"That was even better than I imagined."
Brian smiled. "I was thinking the exact same thing."

"My brother is the most important person to me in the world."
Brian knew this—it was obvious to anyone who'd ever seen Gerard and Mikey together, but he just nodded, letting Mikey continue as he straightened his hair, occasionally glancing in the mirror to see Brian ignoring the magazine on his lap. 
"Every since we were kids, it's always been me and Gerard.  Me and him against the world.  He taught me everything; he fucking taught me how to jerk off.  He brought me comics and old movies and mix tapes.  And when the kids at school were mean to him, I tried to stand up to them as best I could. 
"And now, now we're together all the time.  It's me and him against the world still.  I never thought—I never thought it would be like this, that it could be like this.  Gerard was going to be an artist; he had a fucking good job in New York.  I was going to play in a band and starve in a van driving around the country.  We were barely supposed to ever see each other, but now, we're together all the time."  He met Brian's eyes in the mirror.  "I just never thought it would be like this."
And Brian knew he wasn't talking about Gerard anymore. 

"I would've given anything to manage you guys."
They were killing zombies in the back of the bus when Brian glanced over at Mikey and started talking. 
"When I heard you guys for the first time, I knew right away.  I would give up everything I had to manage you.  I'd spend all my savings, sell everything I own, to be your manager. 
"And when you didn't say 'yes' right away, I freaked the fuck out.  I didn't know how to prove myself to you guys.  I only knew that I needed to be part of this.  I would've done anything you guys asked, anything I thought you wanted."
He met Mikey's eyes.  "And I still would."

Mikey and Brian talked a lot.  During movies, during soundcheck, on rides to venues, in make up rooms, at fast food joints.  It didn't matter where they were or what they were doing—or supposed to be doing.  Slowly, Brian began to realize that Mikey's feelings weren't going to up and disappear one day. 
Brian let them make out, just once, but it was the most amazing experience of Mikey's life.  He thought about it constantly, thought about the feel of Brian's hands on the small of his back as he straddled Brian's thighs in the lounge one night when the rest of the guys were out.  Brian had slipped his hands down, squeezing Mikey's ass, and Mikey had moaned into this mouth, gripping Brian's too short hair tighter in his fingers.  He had sucked Brian's lip ring into his mouth, found that it was a turn on for Brian, and did it again and again.  Warm mouths and slick tongues, too much teeth and spit, but it was amazing and perfect and Mikey never wanted it to end. 

Brian stood sidestage at a concert one night, watching them play.  He was incredibly proud.  The five small town idiots he managed were taking the world by storm and nothing was going to stop them.  They'd faced their roadblocks—losing their drummer, almost losing their frontman, drugs, pills, booze, and all the horrible wonders of the world.  Here they were on the other side, stronger and better than ever before. 
If they could stand in front of the whole world and let all their fans watch as they faced their demons, maybe Brian could too. 
When Mikey got off stage, Brian wrapped his arms around him and kissed him deeply.  Brian had never kissed him in public, or even in front of the other members of the band, and for a moment, Mikey was too surprised to do anything. Then he slid his fingers into Brian's hair and kissed him back. 
When Brian pulled back, both of them were flushed and a little lost for breath. 
"Do you want to be my boyfriend, Mikey Way?"
For a moment, Mikey just blinked at him, but then he broke into a beautiful smile. "I was afraid you'd never ask." 
Brian leaned in again, but instead of kissing him, he whispered, "So was I." 
They kissed again, and Brian didn't care if the entire band and crew saw them.  He didn't care if fans or cameramen saw them and posted their pictures all over the web.  He didn't care about worrying if what he had was real or not.  It was their turn, his and Mikey's, and everyone else would just have to deal with it.   


This Is Not Some Kind Of Initiation

Title: This Is Not Some Kind Of Initiation
Author: GwenCarmichael
Pairing: Frank/Tyler Glenn (of Neon Trees)
Rating: NC-17
Word Count: 1353
Beta: cinnamoretti
mcr_bingo prompt: Band—Neon Trees
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary: Frank hooks up with Tyler Glenn when Neon Trees opens for My Chemical Romance.
Author's Note: In this story, Jamia doesn't exist.

This Is Not Some Kind Of Initiation

Tyler Glenn was hot. Frank decided this the first night that Neon Trees opened for My Chemical Romance. He'd already been pretty aware of Tyler's good looks—he'd seen plenty of videos and photos of the band when he was giving his input on what bands should open for them on tour—but watching him live was a completely different thing. Tyler strutted around the stage, dancing his ass off, looking slightly like he was having a seizure; he reminded Frank of Gerard at in that respect. His voice was hot, his tight pants were hot, his being shirtless was hot. Tyler was just hot all around.
For the next couple days, Frank found himself side stage for at least part of Neon Trees' set, even if he was supposed to be getting into the zone with the rest of the guys. It was just so good to watch, to see Tyler in his element: calm, cool, and collected even though he was in front of a bunch of people who were lucky to know two of his band's songs. He took everything in stride, looking like a wild animal but not letting anything go to his head or phase him in any way. Frank didn't mean to sound old and experienced—because going on thirty was not old, even if he had told Gerard it was when Gerard turned thirty—but if the band kept going the way they were, Neon Trees was going to be a force to be reckoned with. A couple years, maybe a solo tour of their own, and they'd be so tight there would be nothing that could get in their way. He kind of wanted to see that, wanted the chance to see that.
After the My Chem set, Frank jumped around backstage, hugging everyone in sight—everyone who wasn't carrying his beloved guitars or heavy amps. He might be crazy, but he wasn't stupid.
He saw Tyler grinning at him and rushed to hug him, too. God, every inch of Tyler was firm muscle and steady heat against him.
"Did you just moan?" Tyler joked, smiling, a light in his brown eyes.
"Maybe." Frank leaned in and kissed him, right on the mouth, and it was Tyler's turn to moan, clutching at Frank's shoulders while Frank ran his hands over the smooth sides of Tyler's head before rubbing his Mohawk against the grain.
When they separated, they were both breathing hard.
"Frank." No question, no order. Just his name, and that light in Tyler's eyes.
"Come to the hotel with me."
Tyler just nodded.

In Frank's hotel room, Tyler pressed him up against the door, kissing him anxiously as he rubbed against him, running his hands over Frank's hips and sides. Frank clutched at Tyler's shoulders and then spun them around. As short as Frank was compared to Tyler, he'd be damned if he didn't get a chance to see what sounds he could get Tyler to make under him.
God, they were beautiful sounds.
Frank pulled back, short of breath. "You should know," he panted, "that this isn't some kind of initiation or rite of passage or some shit. We don't, like, require the opening bands to be our fuck buddies or something. I just want you."
If possible, Tyler's dark eyes went darker. "Fuck. I—I just want you, too."
"Oh, thank fuck." Frank attacked his mouth again, rough and sharp and wet.
They had their shirts off by the time they crashed down on the bed, and Frank gasped helplessly, staring wide-eyed at the ceiling, his hand on Tyler's head begging him not to stop as he licked and sucked across Frank's tattoos. As he arched into Tyler's mouth, Frank had never loved his tattoos more.
When Frank was half-mindless with need, Tyler moved up to his mouth and firmly thrust his tongue inside, grinding down hard against him. Frank groaned, hands grappling against the planes of Tyler's back, not sure if he needed to touch him or hold onto something.
Tyler climbed off him quickly, and Frank gaped at him, panting, until Tyler choked out, "Pants. Get your pants off."
Tyler shoved down his own jeans and then helped a struggling Frank by stripping the sweat-soaked denim down and off his legs. He got back onto the bed between Frank's legs and took hold of his knees, pushing them up and out before nosing below Frank's balls and licking across his hole.
"Jesus, fuck!" Frank's voice was high and breathless, and he needed Tyler to do that again. "More," he begged. "Please, Tyler, more."
Tyler licked at him again, sliding his tongue in circles before pushing it deep into Frank's ass. Frank threw back his head and screamed.
Tyler just kept licking into him, again and again, sliding in his fingers as well and rubbing Frank from the inside out. Frank grabbed onto the base of his dick, desperately trying to keep from coming, and gasped, "Tyler. Tyler, please."
Tyler's head came up slowly from between his legs, eyes dark, mouth red and wet. "Frank?" His voice was raw. He hesitated above him, unsure, until Frank wrapped his arms around him and pulled Tyler's mouth down to meet his. As he sucked on Tyler's tongue, he didn't care that it had just been in his ass; the fact that Tyler was willing—and wanted—to do that to him just made it hotter.
He turned his head, gasping for air as Tyler bit and sucked at his throat. "Tyler. Tyler, I'm ready. Please. Fuck me."
Tyler leaned over Frank, holding his weight up on his arms, and looked down at him. "Condom?"
Frank panted, trying to think straight. "My bag. Front pocket."
Tyler moved away quickly, and Frank watched him dig in his bag, staring at the curve of his spine and the swell of his ass.
"Hurry up, Tyler. C'mon."
Tyler came back between his legs, mouthing at the inside of his thigh while he rolled on the condom and slicked himself up. "How do you like it?" he asked, meeting Frank's lust blown eyes and resting a hand on his knee.
"Like this." Frank rocked his hips, trying to bring them closer together. "Tyler, please."
Bracing one hand beside Frank and guiding his cock with the other, Tyler slowly pushed inside, pausing and watching Frank's face when he was all the way in. Frank's mouth was open wide in a silent cry, and his eyes slowly opened to meet Tyler's, holding his gaze as he waited for the initial burn to pass. When Tyler rocked his hips and Frank's eyelids fluttered, Tyler took that as an invitation and began thrusting into him in earnest.
"Tyler, Tyler, Tyler…" Frank began chanting his name breathlessly as their hips moved together, and Tyler bent down, letting Frank rub off against his belly as he kissed him hard.
"Tyler, Tyler… oh." Frank cried out into Tyler's mouth, clutching his shoulders hard as he came between them.
A few unsteady thrusts into Frank's clenching heat and Tyler was coming as well.
After Tyler threw away the condom and cleaned them both up with his t-shirt, he lay on his back beside Frank, both of them breathing hard as they came down.
"Fuck, you're amazing," Frank gasped out, and Tyler grinned.
"Was this a one night only kind of thing?" he asked. "I mean, I'll still be on tour for another two and a half weeks."
Frank rolled onto his side to meet Tyler's eyes. "Are you offering me another two and a half weeks of nights just like tonight?"
Tyler grinned. "I think I could agree to that."
"Deal." Frank reached down for the blanket and pulled Tyler's arm across his chest. "If you're one of those fuckers who gets up at the ass crack of dawn, you better not wake me up until a decent hour. Like, lunch hour."
"What if I wake you up with a blowjob?"
Drowsily, Frank muttered, "If it's truly phenomenal, you might be forgiven." Tyler's laughter was the last thing he heard before he fell asleep.

You Make The Noise Go Away

Title: You Make The Noise Go Away
Author: GwenCarmichael
Pairing: Frank/Gerard
Rating: R
Word Count: 2484
Beta:  cinnamoretti 
mcr_bingo prompt: Person—Jamia
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental." 
Summary: Frank helps Gerard with his withdrawal needs.
Author's Note: The Gerard/Lyn-Z timeline has been altered to fit this fic. 

You Make The Noise Go Away

Gerard was losing his mind. He'd seen enough TV and movies that he knew withdrawal wasn't going to be easy. The media didn't do a horrible job; they showed the depression, the short temper, the anxiety, the cravings. What they didn't talk about was the constant itch, the feeling just beneath his skin of crawling and burning, the pounding in his veins, the million-mile-an-hour speedway in his head. If he was going to keep still, he had to really focus and lose himself in something or else his body would crawl out of itself.

He was trying so hard and doing so well. He was proud of himself, more in control and more conscious than he'd been for years.

He was just dying for the itch to go away.

The band noticed. How could they not? Mikey went with him on coffee runs; Bob joined him on smoke breaks. Ray scoured the Internet for movies, comics, and general nerdiness for Gerard to focus on, and Frank… Frank was always there, always with him.

It made sense then that Frank saw what was happening and realized what it meant before anyone else.

Gerard hit his head against the wall and bit down harder on his hand, struggling to keep silent and to keep his hips still and not choke Gabi. She was a road PA with pretty eyes and cool sleeves, and she managed to steal them time whenever she could get away.

Sometimes Gerard felt bad about using her like this, but Gabi always assured him that she understood and it was fine. She did understand, as much as anyone could, and God, she was good.

She sucked him through his aftershocks, then dealt with the condom as he sagged against the wall mindlessly. This was it, the break he so desperately needed. Just for a few minutes, his mind was quiet and his blood was still; Gerard was in complete control.

When he could breathe again, he unzipped Gabi's jeans and stuck his hand in her panties to return the favor.

It wasn't too long before the guys noticed. Gerard was on a first-name basis with half the tour crew, and his disappearances were too frequent to be explained away unless he had some serious bowel problems.

The guys knew what was going on, to some extent, but they didn't do anything about it. Gerard's sex life was his own business, and unless it began to negatively affect him or the band, it was none of their business.

When Frank saw Gerard and one of the male guitar techs disappear together after a soundcheck, he followed. Just before they disappeared into a storage closet, he called out, drawing them up short. "I've got this." He met the guitar tech's eyes until he shrugged and backed off, then took Gerard's elbow and guided him into the closet.

"Frankie? What is it? What's going on?" He tried to hide the fact that he was already half-hard in anticipation of the man Frank had just dismissed.

"I know what's going on, Gee."

Gerard just shook his head.

"Gerard, I know."

"No, Frankie, you don't know. I'm fighting so hard, but my mind is always spinning and my blood is always racing and sometimes I just need to be able to breathe, just for a minute."

"I don't want you doing this anymore."

Gerard's eyes widened. "No, Frankie, listen. No one's getting hurt, not me, not the crew. We're safe. And for a couple minutes, when it all gets to be too much, they let me breathe. Please, Frankie. Please understand. Please don't ask me to stop."

"I want you to stop—"

"Please, Frankie," Gerard whined, nearly begging.

"I want you to stop fucking the crew. I want it to be me." Frankie watched, waiting, while Gerard processed what he was saying.

"I… I don't understand." Frank wanted to fuck him?

"I don't want you hooking up with random people just because you need to. I want you to be with someone who understands, someone who cares about you, someone who's got your back. I'm all of those things."

Gerard's eyes were wide and uncertain, and Frank stepped closer, pressing them together.

"Whenever you need, I want you to let me know, and I'll take care of you."

"I need, Frankie, I need." Gerard was almost begging.

Frank nuzzled at Gerard's neck, hoping to calm him down a little. "Okay. Okay, Gee. I've got you." Frank slid to his knees. "Will a blowjob work?"

Gerard actually whimpered, nodding his head furiously and gripping the stage piece behind him.

Frank tugged Gerard's pants down and ghosted ink stained fingers over Gerard's hardening length. "You clean?"

Gerard nodded, eyes closed.


"Yeah. Yes, I'm clean."

"You sure?"

"Yes. I'm sure. I swear."

Frank went down on him in one smooth motion, bracing one hand on his hip, and Gerard couldn't hold back his cry. Shoving his free hand into his pants, Frank got them off together.

When Gerard came back down, he reached for Frank, who shook his head. Gerard frowned. "I always reciprocate."

"No need. I did it myself." Frank smiled at him and kissed his temple. "C'mon. Let’s get out of here."

Things were awkward at the hotel that night—on Gerard's end, at least. He sat on the edge of his bed, picking at the threads of his jeans and listening to Frank shower. He still wasn't quite sure what had happened or what it meant for them, but was too embarrassed to ask.

When Frank came out of the bathroom, water dripping down his bare chest and disappearing beneath the waistband of his pajama pants, Gerard had to catch himself and look away. Frank flopped down on his bed.

"It's okay to look, you know."

Gerard blushed red. "No, it’s not."

"Sure, it is. I look at you guys all the time. It's not wrong to appreciate a good view."

Gerard's eyes widened. "You do?"

"Sure." Because Gerard looked like he needed reassurance, Frank rolled onto his side and propped himself on one arm to look at him properly. "Mikey has this line over his hipbones where the sun gets to that little strip of skin where his shirts never meet his jeans. Screw Ray's mouth, have you seen his hands? Those things are huge. Crazy talented fingers. Makes a guy wonder what else he's good at."

He had to ask, even if it was just to hear Frank say that there was nothing attractive about him. "What about me?"

Frank grinned. "You, Gerard Way, have three freckles right above the crack of your ass."

Gerard blinked in surprise then smiled, ridiculously pleased Frank not only noticed, but remembered something so intimate and insignificant.

"See? Unless I’m a complete freak—"

"You are."

"It's completely normal."

Gerard's smile faded into the silence stretching between them. "What are you doing, Frankie?"

Frank didn't make a joke or shrug it off, just met Gerard's eyes. "I'm helping you, Gee."

Gerard shook his head. "Do you understand what you're getting into, Frankie? What if I need you forever?"

"I hope you need me forever."

Gerard gave him a look. "Like that, always. But like this? Do you know what you're asking for? Do you know what you're letting me do to you?"

Frank cocked an eyebrow. "It's not exactly a chore to let you fuck me, Gee."

Gerard's eyes widened. "You—you’d let me fuck you?"

Frank shrugged. "Well, yeah. It's not exactly a chore, like I said. Only if you want to, that is."

"I do," Gerard said quickly. "I like to top. I like to bottom, too; I'm versatile. It's fun to switch it up sometimes."

Frank grinned. "I feel you, Gee. Some days, I'm in the mood to fuck someone, but others, nothing does it like getting my brains fucked out."

Gerard's mouth actually opened in surprise. He had never known about this side of Frank, never guessed it even existed. "You—before, you've… with guys?"

"Well, yeah. You didn't think I was born knowing how to blow someone like that, did you?"

Gerard didn't know what to think. "Still, Frankie. What if… what if I do something?"

Frank sighed. "Gerard, I am—in no meaning of the word—a virgin. Okay? So don't worry about being my first or scarring me for life or anything. You're in this to clear you're head; it's gonna be vanilla." He paused. "Right?"

"Yes, absolutely," Gerard answered quickly, and Frank smiled. "Frankie, what about us?"

Frank fixed him with a steady look before answering. "Gerard, I love you and I respect you. I am never going to think any less of you for wanting to be able to take a breather the only way you know how. Are you going to think I'm a slut or treat me like an object?"

"God, no!" Gerard's eyes widened in horror and alarm. "Never, Frankie. Never. I'm so grateful to you for doing this; I could never think…"

Frank smiled. "See? No worries. Everything's going to be fine."

Everything was fine. Frank was there for Gerard whenever he needed, always there to clear his head. He even let Gerard blow him when he just needed to focus—though he did have to repeatedly assure Gerard that it was more than welcome. Frank figured that Gerard was the only person on the planet who would ever thank him for receiving a blowjob.

At first, there was a lot of sex. Even for Frank, who enjoyed frequent sex of any kind, it was a lot. As time stretched on though, it began to taper down as Gerard was able to manage the urges and control his body.

As the months stretched on, Frank was always there whenever Gerard needed him. When the stress of touring got to him, Frank was there to help him catch his breath. When he freaked out while recording at The Paramour, when Mikey had his breakdown, when the darkness of The Black Parade finally hit home—Frank was always unwavering and unyielding, the line Gerard depended on to keep himself from flying away.

Frank and Jamia were forever beautiful in Gerard's eyes, and not just because Jamia was okay with Frank and Gerard's arrangement. Gerard had never seen Frank so happy, so calm, so sure as he was with Jamia, and Gerard was more than happy for them.

Then Frank decided he was going to marry her, and Gerard knew everything was about to change.

"We're cool, Gee," Frank said, rejoining the tour after spending three days with Jamia to celebrate their engagement. "I talked to Jamia."

"You—what? Why?"

Frank shrugged. "I needed to know it was cool with her, with us, and it is. She gets it, Gee, she really does. She understands it and she gives her blessing and shit."

"Frankie…" Gerard felt his stomach sinking.

"Relax, okay?" Frank laughed. "You worry too much. Just trust me. Everything is cool."

Everything is going to be cool when you're cheating on your wife with me? Gerard didn't say it, though.

He wasn't quite sure how Frank being married made things different; it wasn't like they all hadn't known all this time that Frank would marry her eventually. Now that there were rings involved and dates being looked at, suddenly everything was different.

Gerard loved Frank. He wasn't in love with him; he wasn't about to make some grand declaration and try to outdo Jamia. He loved him, loved everything about him, and was connected to him in ways far more lasting than blood, sex, or marriage licenses. He wanted the best for Frank; he deserved it and more. He deserved everything.

Jamia was everything. She was sweet and kind and beautiful, funny and stubborn and wild. Everything she was complemented Frank in every way. They would be so happy together; Gerard knew it. They would have kids and dogs and a family. They would have a life together.

There was no place in that life for a sex-dependent friend. Gerard didn't belong there; he didn't want to be there. It didn't feel right to him. Frank belonged to Jamia and Jamia belonged to Frank. There simply wasn't a place for Gerard there, and he both accepted and agreed with that.

It was time to face withdrawal again.

Gerard didn't need Frank as often as he had when they started, but the knowledge that he couldn't have him made him need him more.

He was frustrated and bitchy, short-tempered and unfocused, and these shortcomings just made him more frustrated and angry. Frank noticed, as usual, like he had a satellite under Gerard's skin, but Gerard brushed off his offers.

Strangely, Gerard felt better by rejecting Frank's offers; he felt stronger, more in control. It felt good.

He still felt pretty shitty at times; his blood and thoughts still raced. Sometimes, he thought about seeing a doctor, but that would only lead to pills. No matter how helpful those pills would be, they were still a drug, and drugs lead to addiction. Gerard resigned himself to the fact that this was his new reality.

"Gerard, what are you doing?" Frank's tone was exasperated. "You're going crazy; just let me help."

"No." Gerard sat in the back lounge of the bus, tapping random beats on his thighs, each hand beating a separate rhythm. His ears were ringing and his thoughts were racing so fast, it was hard to breathe. Frank had always been there to stop things before they got his bad.

"Jamia is fine with this. I'm fine with this. Just let me help you."

Gerard needed, so badly, and Frank was right there, completely willing but— "I'm not fine with this."


"No, Frank." Denying Frank had cleared his head a tiny bit. He got up and took Frank's face in his hands, meeting his eyes assuredly. "I don't want it to be like this anymore. It doesn't feel right anymore. We're done with this." He kissed Frank, mouth warm and soft. "I'm going for a walk."

He grabbed his jacket as he left the bus and wandered aimlessly through the venue.

His thoughts kept tripping over themselves, and he clenched his jaw. Maybe it was always going to be this way now. Without Frank to give him a break, maybe the rushing would just build up until he exploded—or went insane.

He rubbed at his temples, tried to breathe, and listed off superheroes in order of their worldwide release date.

Without realizing it, he had arrived at the venue stage where Mindless Self Indulgence was running a soundcheck. Lyn-Z was in a backbend when she saw him watching her, and she smiled brilliantly at him, dark eyes lighting up in her pale face. Gerard smiled back.

Just like that, his mind went completely blank, except for one thought. 

I'm going to marry her. 


The South Could Be The Death Of Me

Title:  The South Could Be The Death Of Me
Author: GwenCarmichael
Pairing: Ryan/Brendon
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: 2760
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary: The ungodly heat drives everyone a little crazy.
Author's Note: I don't know about the rest of the world, but the ungodly heat in northeastern Wisconsin has driven me to write this fic.       

The South Could Be The Death Of Me
It was ungodly hot.

Brendon was almost 100% positive that he was about to melt into a puddle or spontaneously combust—whichever took the least amount of energy. This heat was going to be the death of him, and that was saying something—he was from Vegas, the middle of one big desert. The only difference was that the desert got cool at night; the south did not. Ever, it seemed.

Ryan had been bitching for days. He could be a real asshole when he wanted to be and a prima donna whenever he felt the urge, and it seemed that the heat had inspired both. He complained about everything, sniped at everyone, and picked fights with anyone stupid enough to take the bait.

Spencer was quiet. It seemed that his coping mechanism was to play dead and exert as little energy as possible, choosing not to move or speak unless absolutely necessary. He'd slump over any available surface and, for all intents and purposes, be dead to the world.

Jon… well, Jon didn't seem too different. He took Ryan's bait and let him yell at him every once in a while, hit on every girl he came across, and took pictures after he placed strange objects on Spencer's immobile body. Apparently, being from Chicago made him immune to the heat that killed Vegas boys

After a show, they all crawled back to the bus and collapsed in sweaty piles, trying to keep as much space between their heat-generating bodies as possible. No matter how many water bottles they poured over themselves, they never got any cooler. It was possible that the water boiled as soon as it made contact with their skin; it was equally possibly that the water evaporated in the air as soon as it left the plastic bottle.

"God, Spencer," Ryan growled. "Would it kill you to keep a steady beat through an entire song without rushing the final chorus?"

Spencer didn't even try to defend himself, just let his head sag even further back against the couch.

Frustrated, Ryan turned on Brendon. "Could you try to keep your clothes on? We designed those fucking ridiculous costumes for a reason."

"I'll try, Ry," Brendon mumbled, exhausted.

Desperately, Ryan tried a final target. "If Jon could just—"

"I can't, Ryan, not tonight," came Jon's voice from the far side of the living area. "It's too hot. We'll fight tomorrow."

Ryan slumped in his seat, dejected, just as the van moved onto the highway, allowing cool air to stream through the open windows. Brendon could have led the bus in a prayer of thanksgiving—if he still did that, and if it wouldn't have required so much energy. 

The guys lay sprawled behind the venue after soundcheck, hiding in the shade. It was cooler in the shade by about point two degrees, dropping the temperature down to only a thousand degrees Fahrenheit, by Brendon's calculation.


Ryan grunted.

"'I Write Sins Not Tragedies' was a good song."

Ryan rolled onto his side, sweaty hair sticking to his forehead, and Brendon reached out and brushed it aside. "It's awesome. Why?"

Brendon shrugged. "I was just thinking that if we die, it'd be okay that we had one great hit."

Just as Ryan smiled at him, Jon's voice drifted over from the other side of the tree. "We're not going to die."

"I think I might," Brendon countered. "South Carolina could be the death of me. Do they even know who we are here?"

"You'll live," Jon said firmly. "We'll get out of here and go to, like, northern Wisconsin or Michigan."

"I can't go there!" Ryan yelped. "Rednecks—hello? Do I look like redneck-friendly material?"

"Is this a trick question?" Brendon asked cautiously. "Like the time you asked if you were prison-bitch material?"

"Yes, everyone in prison would jump at the chance to tap your fine ass," Spencer grumbled groggily. "No, your attitude would drive them all insane so they'd kill you."

"Don't get sent to prison," Jon answered.

"Oh!" Brendon's light bulb went off. "Don't go into redneck territory?"

"Exactly." Ryan rolled onto his back, spread his arms in a Jesus Christ pose, and closed his eyes.

Brendon watched him breathe for a moment before rolling over again. 

Slowly dying behind the venues—seriously, did no one in the south have AC?—with bottles of water after soundchecks became a regular thing when the heat refused to let up.

Brendon came up with weird games for them to play, and as long as they didn't involve moving, the guys played along.

Still sure they were going to die, Brendon had them all say one reason why it would be okay to die right then. The answers were sweet or even funny… until they got to Ryan.

"We were nearly platinum before my dad died, and he knew it. He told me I would never amount to anything, and I can die tomorrow because I know the fact that I did was kicking him in the balls when he died."

For some reason, hearing Ryan say that, hearing the way he said it, made Brendon's heart hurt. 

"What's something you've always wanted to do but never did?"

Jon laughed and immediately answered, "Two girls, same time."

Spencer laughed. "Niagara Falls."

"Seriously?" Brendon arched his back and tipped his chin up so he could see Spencer behind him.

"Yup. Isn't is supposed to be the coolest thing ever? I want to know if it lives up to all the hype."

"Nice," Ryan praised. "How bout you, Bren?"

"I wanna fall in love," Brendon said quietly, "with someone who loves me back. No more of this unrequited shit all our songs are about."

Spencer and Jon laughed.

"Yeah, unrequited love sucks," Ryan said amiably, and they fell into comfortable silence.

"Hey, how bout you, Ry?" Jon asked.

Ryan shrugged. "I don't know."

"Come on," Jon teased. "No kinks you've been dying to try? Nothing you want to see?"

"I don't…" With a sigh, Ryan rolled over to Brendon, propped himself up on one arm, and pressed his lips to Brendon's in a gentle chaste kiss. "That," he said with a smile as he pulled back. "I wanted to do that but never did." He laid back down.

"What?" Jon asked. "You've always wanted to kiss B?"

Ryan shrugged. "You'll kiss anything that moves, and Spence and I had that phase in high school—"

"Which you promised never to mention again!" Spencer cried in a strangled voice.

"—so Bren was the only one I hadn't kissed yet. So I did."

No one questioned this, and Brendon couldn't help but bring his fingertips up to gently touch his lips where Ryan's had been a few moments before. 

"It's storming in New Orleans." Zack's voice was tinny coming from the speakerphone the band was gathered around, but they were all hanging off his every word.

"Our next show is there," Brendon stated, and Ryan was suddenly more excited than he'd been in ages.

"Seriously, Zack? Rain?! I bet it's cold there, sixty degrees; we're gonna need fucking jackets and—"

"You're not going."

Stunned horrified silence followed.

"W—what? What do you mean?"

"Management cancelled the show."

"You are management!"

"Take it up with Pete, okay?"

"Oh, I will." Ryan was livid now. "I will fucking call him right now and—"

"And you're staying in Alabama for three days."

"What?" Ryan's shriek made Brendon wince. "What the fuck, man?"

"The other option is Houston, and that's even hotter than—"

"That's desert heat; it's practically home. We can handle—"

"The hotel's already booked; you're staying for three days. Bitch at Pete. And don't kill each other.

When Brendon looked over, he couldn't tell if Ryan was going to cry or break something. 

They pulled up to the hotel and just sat looking at it. It was certainly better than the shitty motels they usually slept in but was in no way a five star. Maybe a generous two star, probably a one and a half.

Ryan looked like he was about to implode.

"I'll room with Ryan," Brendon said quickly and felt Spencer give him a one armed hug.

"Thank you," he whispered in Brendon's ear and kissed his temple before following Jon off the bus.

Brendon helped Ryan with his bags, let him pick which bed he wanted, and tried to keep him comfortable as they waited for Jon to call so they could go to the pool.

When Ryan's phone rang, he dove for it and answered before the first ring. He set it down a moment later and flatly said, "Pool's out of order, maintenance bullshit." He crawled into bed, flopping down on his belly and burying his face in the pillow. "I'm going to bed."

So he wouldn't make any noise and disturb Ryan, Brendon went to bed, too, and fought himself to stay still and silent.

The next day dawned hot and sticky. With the windows covered and the AC on full blast, Ryan and Brendon sat half-naked on the floor as they watched TV.

Just before lunch, the AC sputtered and died, and Ryan muffled his scream in a nearby pillow. No amount of banging or jimmying would coax the machine back to life.

Ryan called the front desk, and after a long hold and a lot of yelling, he threw his phone on the bed. "They're too busy to keep us from dying. I hate Pete Wentz. I fucking hate him!" When he stormed into the bathroom and slammed the door behind him, Brendon was pretty sure he was crying.

Ryan was lying facedown on his bed, waiting for death to take him, when he heard the door opened and turned over to see Brendon stagger in under the weight of several giant bags of ice. "Bren?"

Brendon smiled at him, his exhausted face breaking into a child's grin. "I got you something." He kicked the door shut behind him, just managing to keep from falling over.

Ryan scrambled to sit up. "You… for me?"

"Yup." Brendon's grin seemed permanent as he made his way into the bathroom and began filling the tub with cold water. The hotel room was shitty as fuck, but it had a great tub.

Ryan came in behind him. "How…? I asked to borrow money for a slushie yesterday, and you said you were broke."

Brendon shrugged. "I took my guitar and sang on the corner."

Ryan's eyes widened. "For four hours?"

Brendon shrugged again. "Not too many people out there."

Ryan just stared at him for a minute then quietly said, "You sat on a street corner for four hours in 120 degree heat to buy me ice?"

"Well, yeah."

Somehow, they were having a much more profound conversation than ice.

"But… I've been a bitch."

Brendon gave a small smile and shrugged. "You're still my Ryan."

That made Ryan smile, and it felt to him like his first real smile I months. "Always."

Brendon smiled back, then ripped open a bag of ice and dumped it in the tub. "Climb in."

Instead, Ryan took a step forward, studying him softly. "Bren," he whispered, gently brushing a lock of hair out of Brendon's face.


"Do you even know how perfect you are?" Without waiting for a response, Ryan leaned forward, closing his eyes and gently pressing his lips to Brendon's.

Brendon let his eyes flutter shut, not daring to move or breathe as the kiss went on and on. Ryan's mouth was soft and gentle on his, not demanding anything, just giving and sharing.

When he finally pulled back, Ryan reached for Brendon's hand. "Come in with me?"

"I got it for you. You don't have—"

"I want you to. Please?"

Brendon just nodded helplessly as they stripped down to their underwear and climbed in, Brendon's back to Ryan's chest. Brendon ripped open another bag of ice and poured it over them.

"Oh, God, Bren," Ryan whispered, head leaning back. "How are you so perfect?"

Not knowing what to say, Brendon allowed Ryan to pull him back against his chest.

"You're so perfect. So so perfect." Ryan gently ran his fingers through Brendon's hair, occasionally reaching for ice to trail down Brendon's neck and shoulders.

It felt amazing. It was wonderful to be cool for the first time in what seemed like weeks, but Brendon was pretty sure Ryan's presence was the best part of all.

He sighed through Ryan's gentle ministrations, loving the feel of Ryan against his skin. Eventually he came to notice something warm and hot pressing against the small of his back, and when he shifted, Ryan whimpered.

"Sorry," he whispered. "Bren, I'm sorry."

Brendon took a deep breath, but his voice still shook as he said, "It's okay."


"Yeah." His voice was barely audible when he admitted, "I liked it."

That seemed to catch Ryan off guard. "Yeah?"

In response, Brendon nudged back, shivering at Ryan's moan. Ryan settled his hand on Brendon's hip and gave a little thrust forward, unable to hold back a groan.

Stilling his hips, Ryan pulled Brendon against him more tightly, running fingers across his collarbone. "Oh, God, Bren," he whispered, kissing the side of his neck. "If it wasn't so hot, I'd—I'd like to fuck you. I'd love to fuck you."

Brendon gave a low groan and shuddered. "I'd—I'd like that."

"Would you let me, Bren?" Ryan whispered in his ear, voice deep and hoarse. "Would you let me love you like that?"

Brendon nodded furiously, hard at Ryan's words and touch, at the feel of his lips at the soft skin of his neck. "Yes. Yes, Ryan, please. I want you to. I want—"

"Shh." Ryan kissed his neck, on hand on his collarbone, the other in his hair. "It's okay. Oh, God, Bren, I want you so much. You can feel that, can't you?"

Brendon nodded, trying to calm down, and felt Ryan moving behind him.

"Move forward?"

Brendon did, and Ryan stretched for another bag of ice, dumping it over them. He could feel Brendon gasp as they lay back.

"I could fall asleep like this," Ryan murmured against Brendon's hair, feeing him nod. "Stay here with me?"

"I—I don't…"

"It's okay." Ryan felt his heart sink and told himself to stop being stupid. "You don't have to, if you don't want to."

"I do! I do want to. I just…" Brendon ducked his head. "If I can't stay still, I don't want to—"

"I don't care," Ryan said simply. "I don't care if you stay still. I just want you to stay."

Brendon relaxed against him. "Okay."

Ryan wrapped his arms around him, taking Brendon's hands in his and interlocking their fingers. "I've got you, Bren. I've got you."  And I'm never letting go. 

They fell asleep like that, tangled together in the ice filled tub, oblivious to the heat and humidity.

Brendon's phone rang around three in the morning but they didn't hear it. The same happened when Ryan's rang a couple seconds later.

Brendon awoke with a jump when thunder rumbled overhead, smiling as Ryan's arms tightened around him.

"I've got you, Bren," Ryan mumbled, still asleep. "Go back to sleep."

Brendon wriggled free of Ryan's grasp and turned to shake his shoulder. "Ryan? Ryan, wake up."

Ryan opened his eyes slowly, sleepily focusing on Brendon's face. "Bren?"

"Ry, it's storming."

Ryan's eyes widened. "I—Wh—Really?"

Brendon grinned, just as someone pounded on their door. "Bden! Ryan!"

"Get up you idiots; you're going to miss it!"

Scrambling from the tub, they hurried outside—and into the downpour.

Brendon whooped and ran to climb on Jon's back as Spencer tugged Ryan out of his amazed stupor.

The four of them ran and danced and screamed in the downpour like four idiots who had never seen rain before. The temperature change was instant and dramatic, and the boys couldn't stop themselves. Brendon caught Ryan's eyes across the parking lot and smiled as the world slowed down; the smile Ryan gave in return was the most beautiful thing Brendon had ever seen.

They didn't go back inside until the lightning got close and a lady from one of the hotel rooms shouted for them to get inside before they got themselves killed.

Ryan tossed Brendon a towel and continued drying his hair as Brendon peeled off his soaked underwear.


"Yeah?" Ryan focused hard on not looking at Brendon.

"It's not hot anymore."

Supernova For You

Title: Supernova For You
Author: GwenCarmichael
Pairing: Ryan/Brendon, Ryan/Pete
Rating: NC-17
Word Count: 7695
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary: Ryan would do anything to make Brendon happy. Anything.
Author's Note: Pete Wentz is not the complete dick I've made him out to be in this story, and if he is, I don't want to know.     

Supernova For You

Brendon was still such a little boy, Ryan thought, with his big eyes, long hair, and easy grin. He was so innocent, so hopeful, so excited… He wanted this so much, and Ryan couldn't deny him anything. 

So when Pete Wentz had his doubts about signing them, saying that they were young and inexperienced, Ryan went to change his mind. 

Two hours into their discussion, most of which was filled with Ryan's heated promises and Pete's casual rejection, they were no closer to a record deal than they had been the day before. 

"What will it take, Pete?" Ryan asked, leaning forward on Pete's couch. "What do I have to do for you to sign us?"

Finally, he had caught Pete's attention, and Pete leaned forward as well. "Will you blow me? And then let me fuck you?"

Ryan's heart sped up and his stomach dropped. Hadn't he expected this? Wasn't this what it meant to be willing to do anything for Brendon?
Brendon. That's was this was all about. To make Brendon happy, Pete could do whatever he wanted to him. 

"Okay," he said softly, trying to appear calm. 

Pete smirked, leaning back in his armchair. "Right here, right now."

Ryan nervously licked over his bottom lip, suddenly aware of how dry his mouth was. "Okay."

As he watched, Pete stood up, tugged his hoodie and t-shirt over his head, kicked off his shoes, and stripped out of his pants. Completely naked and watching Ryan with a smirk, he sat back down and spread his legs in clear invitation. "Well? What are you waiting for?"

Hesitantly, Ryan stood up and took a step forward. 

"Clothes off." The taunting smirk was permanently etched on his face. 

Ryan swallowed.  Brendon, he reminded himself.  You're doing this to make him happy. Just think of Brendon.  When he stood before Pete, completely naked, he had never felt so self-conscious, so uncomfortable in his own body. 

"Well?" Pete jerked his head. "Get over here."

Ryan moved slowly, settling on his knees between Pete's legs, purposely not touching him, and staring at his dick with wide eyes. 

Pete pushed his fingers into Ryan's hair, tugging him forward, forcing him to brace his palms on Pete's thighs before he ended up facedown in Pete's crotch… which was pretty inevitable.  

"Have you ever done this before?" Pete's voice was taunting, incredulous, and Ryan shook his head. "You've never blown a dude?" Ryan shook his head, but Pete tightened his fingers in his hair. "I want to hear you."

"No," Ryan whispered.

"You've never been fucked before?"


"You've never had anything in your ass before? Not even fingers? Not even your own fingers?"

Ryan blushed, and his voice was barely audible. "No."

"No what?"

Ryan took a breath. "No, I've never had anything in my ass."

Pete's grin was dark and hungry. "Don't worry; I'm gonna change that." And with that, he firmly guided Ryan's head down, pushing into the wet heat of his mouth. 

Brendon, Brendon, Brendon, Ryan thought, trying to ignore the taste of Pete's dick in his mouth, the feel of it on his tongue. 

Not knowing what to do, he licked at the head, keeping his eyes shut tight as Pete laughed at him. He sucked gently, trying to keep as much of Pete's dick out of his mouth as possible. 

And then Pete's dick was gone.  What? That was it?

Pete's taunting grin was back. "Suck your fingers."

Confused, Ryan did what Pete said. 

"Now stick them in your ass."

Ryan's eyes grew wide, and he froze as Pete laughed.

"You gotta open yourself up for my cock, baby."

Ryan swallowed. He couldn't do this. It was bad enough he was going to let Pete fuck him. Was he really going to… while Pete watched?

"C'mon, baby. I've got plans for tonight. Stick 'em in."

Trying to breathe evenly and trembling, Ryan spread his knees a little and reached back to slide a finger between his cheeks and press it against his hole. Pushing in, just a little, actually felt comfortable…

"C'mon, baby, I'm a hell of a lot bigger than your fingertip." Pete reached down and pushed Ryan's finger all the way in. Ryan gasped, giving out a little whimper when Pete gave another push before letting go and sitting back. "Finger yourself, baby. I'm watching."

Ryan bit his lip in concentration, wiggling the finger and making faces at the intrusion.

Pete laughed at him, like watching him struggle awkwardly was the funniest thing he had ever seen. This only made Ryan blush harder and stumble even more. 

"Keep going." Pete guided Ryan's mouth onto his cock again. "I said, keep going."

Ryan couldn't do it. He had no idea how to give a blowjob or finger himself open, and he couldn't attempt both at the same time. 

"Fine." Pete's hand found its way back into Ryan's hair. "I'll take care of this end. You keep fingering yourself." He pushed in deep, making Ryan gag, and laughed. 

Fighting to breathe, Ryan kept pumping the finger in and out of his ass, whimpering when he added a second. The sound made Pete groan. 

Brendon, Brendon, Brendon.

Suddenly, Pete pushed him aside, and he barely got his fingers free of his ass in time to break his fall. Pete slid off the couch and came up behind him. 

"Hands on the couch."

Ryan obeyed. "Condom?"

Pete snorted. "I'm clean, and we know you are." Like Ryan not being a whore like Pete was something to be embarrassed of. 

Before fear had time to swamp Ryan, Pete guided his dick to his hole and bottomed out in one hard push. 

Ryan cried out, gripping the couch as tears came to his eyes. God, it felt like someone had rammed a bus up his ass; he felt like he was going to rip apart. 

Pete's voice came rough at his ear. "Popped your cherry."

Ryan whimpered as Pete pulled out, beginning to cry silently as Pete shoved deep inside him again and again. 

Brendon's laugh. Brendon's eyes. Brendon's smile.  That's why he was doing this, and he repeated it over and over, picturing Brendon in his mind, sweet, beautiful Brendon. 

With a shout, Pete slumped over Ryan's back as he pulsed deep inside him, taking only a moment before pulling out. Ryan collapsed but moved quickly to take all pressure off his throbbing ass. Feeling wetness on the inside of his thigh, he looked down to see Pete's come trickling out of his ass.  Oh, God…

Pete panted a laugh. "Don't worry, baby. I can get it up again. I want to see you ride me."

When Ryan finally got back to his band, he found Brendon waiting up for him. He couldn't stop the tears that welled up when he saw Brendon's sweet face and staggered over to collapse against him. 

Sweet Brendon, perfect Brendon, didn't ask questions, just held him tightly to his chest as he cried, rocking him back and forth. 

This was why he'd done it, for Brendon, because Brendon deserved the world and everything and anything that made him happy. Brendon was worth everything Ryan had given up and more. 

Ryan never talked about what had happened, never told anyone what he did for Brendon and the band. 

When Pete signed them to Decaydance, they threw themselves into the studio to record their debut album. Every time Ryan hear Brendon sing, watched him play, or saw him smile, he knew he'd done right for Brendon. 

Pete never brought it up, never looked at him differently, just acted like it had never happened. But it had happened, and Ryan would never forget it. 

"Do you know what gay sex is like?"

Ryan and Brendon were sharing a bed in a hotel room while on their first tour. 

Ryan tensed and then turned to look at Brendon, lying next to him on the hotel room bed, who flicked his eyes away from the ceiling and towards him for a moment. 

"Are you trying to tell me something, Bren?"

Brendon grinned. "No. Not really. I'm just curious, I guess."


Brendon rolled onto his side, looking him in the face. "Do you know what it's like?"

Ryan rolled onto his back to avoid Brendon's eyes. "Yeah."

"Really?" Brendon's excitement was just like a little kid's. "What's it like?"

"It hurts."

Brendon's face fell, and Ryan backpedaled. He didn't want to scare Brendon or make him think gay sex couldn't be good. 

"You have to lube up properly, really get yourself open and ready. And go slow at first. Give yourself time to adjust. Like, really focus on what's making you both feel good, you know?"

Brendon nodded, fascinated. 

"Make sure you can really trust the guy," Ryan continued, thinking back. "Make sure it's someone who won't laugh at you or make fun of you, no matter what. You're so vulnerable like that… Make sure he loves you."

"No specifics?"

Ryan shrugged. "I don't really know. I just… it's really important that you love the person you're with, that you really want to be doing it. I think you don't need technical stuff then, that it'll be good no matter what happens."

Brendon was quiet, and Ryan was sure this wasn't what he wanted to hear.

"How many times have you done it, with a guy?"

"Twice. With same guy."

"Oh. I haven't ever. With a guy."

Ryan smiled. "I know." He met Brendon's eyes. "Don't rush, okay?"

"Okay, Ryan." Brendon curled against his side, placing one hand on Ryan's chest, and fell asleep. 

"I think Pete would be good. Don't you think so, Ryan?"

Ryan glanced over at Brendon, the two of them watching a movie in the bus lounge area. Well, Ryan had been, at least. It seemed that Brendon was thinking of something else. 

"Good for what?"


Ryan almost choked on air. "Oh, no. No, no, no."

Brendon's eyebrows came together. "Why not? He says he's gay above the belt, but I doubt he spend an entire summer just kissing Mikey Way. And what about Patrick?"

"I don't know, Bren. He just… kinda seems like he'd be a dick in bed. And he's kind of a whore. Who knows where he's been?"

Brendon made a face. "But he likes me. He told me I was cute the other day and grabbed my ass. And he's funny and hot and…"

Oh, no. Fuck, no. "No, Brendon. Just trust me on this. You don't want to get involved with that. Let Patrick and Ashlee fight over him, okay?"

He waited until Brendon nodded. "Okay, Ryan."

"You deserve better than him, Brendon. So much better."

Brendon smiled and turned back to the movie, and after a minute, so did Ryan. 

"Leave Brendon alone, Pete."

Pete cocked an eyebrow. "This is why I cancelled my plans? Because you want to tell me what to do with the bands I sign? With this empty bus to ourselves, I thought you could've come up with something more fun."

A thrill of fear raced through him, but Ryan forced himself to hold his ground—for Brendon. "Brendon's not interested."

Pete made a doubtful sound. "I beg to differ. You didn't hear the sound he made when I smacked that fine ass of his. Do you think he likes to be roughed up? Can't you imagine him over my knee, begging me to spank him, then crying out as I hold him down and pound into his tight red—"

"Stop! Stay away from him, Pete."


"Aren't Patrick and Ashlee enough?"

Pete snorted. "Ashlee's a bitch. Kinky, but a bitch. And Trick… okay, Trick is my favorite fuck. He talks too much, but he's so eager to do anything to make me happy, to let me do anything to him…"

Ryan shuddered.

"Besides, your little Brendon's never been touched, and I have a… fondness for V-cards. But you already know that." He smirked. 

Ryan bristled. "You already have mine. You don't need—"

"You make it sound like I have a collection! I guess I do. Let's see… there's you, of course. Trick. Mikey Way. Gabe—"

"I don't want to hear your list of conquests! Just don't touch Brendon."

Pete considered him for a moment. "Make it worth my while, and I won't."

"What… what do you want?"

"What do you think I want, baby?"

Ryan shuddered. 

"It's you or baby Brendon," Pete said lightly, as if he didn't care one way or another. "Your choice."

"Me," Ryan whispered immediately. "Take me."

Pete grinned. "Get your pants off. And get on your back."

Ryan hesitated, wondering which bed was Pete's. 

Pete laughed. "On the floor."

Blushing, Ryan took of his pants and laid down, watching as Pete pulled out his dick and stroked it. 

"What? You don't need to prep anymore?"

"I… I—" Ryan stammered.

Dropping down, Pete pushed Ryan's knees apart, exposing his hole, and thrust in two fingers without hesitation. Ryan whimpered, and Pete laughed at him. "You prepped before coming over? You knew where you wanted this to go." He wiggled his fingers around, watching Ryan squirm uncomfortably. "Either you suck at prep or you haven't been fucked since me." He pulled out his fingers, replacing them with the head of his cock. "I'm going to bet both." He shoved in hard, balls deep in one slide, laughing as Ryan cried out. 

Pete lifted Ryan's legs over his shoulders and pushed in hard, covering Ryan's face with one hand and forcing it to the side. He leaned in close and teased, "Just so you know… I was never going to fuck Brendon. He's not my type, and he seems like he'd be shit in bed. You're a shitty lay, too, but you take it so fucking good and you just keep coming back for more." He pushed in and out, hard and rough. 

Even thoughts of Brendon couldn't stop the tears that ran down Ryan's face or block out the sound of Pete laughing at him. 

Everyone on the bus was asleep when he got back, and he crept into his bed to cry alone. It wasn't too long before a sleepy-eyed Brendon crawled in with him, gently spooning him and holding him tightly as he fell asleep. 

"Can I talk to you?"

Ryan was in his bunk writing lyrics, but he would never have told Brendon no, especially not now when he was bouncing anxiously. He scooted over as Brendon crawled in, tucking his notebook into a cubby. "What's up?"

Brendon met his eyes, watching carefully. "I like boys."

Ryan waited but that seemed to be it. "Okay."

"'Okay?' That's it?"

Ryan raised his eyebrows. "Umm… It's not exactly news, Bren. We've talked about this before."

"Before was hypothetical."

"And now…?"

"Now I'm sure. I wanted to tell you first."

Ryan smiled. "I'm glad you did."

Brendon smiled back. "Me, too. What was it like when you came out?"

"I… I never…"

"You never came out?" Brendon's voice was stunned. 

Ryan shook his head. "I'm not exactly…"

"You don't like boys?"

Ryan shrugged. "I don't… I never thought about it."

Brendon's eyes widened. "You had sex with guys without—"

"Guy," Ryan clarified quickly. "One guy. Three times in my entire life."

"Three times? You told me it was only twice."

Ryan looked away. "It... it happened again since we talked." He glanced at Brendon. "Besides, being gay has nothing to do with sex."

"Who said anything about being gay?"

"But… you just…"

"I said I like boys, Ryan. I like some girls, too."


"And I am very aware that it has nothing to do with sex."

Ryan just looked at him.

"Can I tell you something?"

"You can tell me anything, Bren."

"I've never had sex with a guy. I'm a virgin." He didn't look embarrassed by that fact; rather, he looked a pleased and a little proud. 

"You are?"

Brendon nodded. "You told me to be sure. So I'm waiting." 

Ryan couldn't help the smile that spread across his face, and he looked at Brendon, really looked at him, and was surprised to see that the little boy he'd thought Brendon would always be had grown into a man. A beautiful, sweet, funny, confident man who was a hell of a lot smarter than Ryan was. 

"What?" Brendon asked, aware of Ryan's staring. 

"I like boys, too."

"But you just said…"

"I thought about it."

"That was pretty fast, Ry."

"I've been thinking about it for a long time; I just didn't realize."

Brendon grinned at him. "Doesn't it feel good to say it out loud?"

Ryan nodded. 

"Say it again."

"I like boys." Brendon's smile was infectious, and soon Ryan was smiling back at him. 

Brendon kind of attached himself to Ryan's hip after that. It didn't matter what Ryan was doing; Brendon would happily sit beside him as if it was the best place in the world. Ryan certainly didn't complain. Whatever made Brendon happy made him happy. 

Brendon lay beside him in Ryan's bunk, staring up at the next bunk as Ryan lay on his belly scrawling lyrics. This had become quite the regular thing for them, but this time was different. Usually, Brendon gave off this satisfied happy vibe but today… Today something was on his mind. Ryan waited for him to say something, but when he never did, Ryan tucked away his lyrics and turned onto his back. 

"What's up, Bren?"

Brendon didn't say anything for a minute, then softly asked, "Do you think I'm pretty?"

Ryan smiled. "Yes."

"I think, you're pretty, too. You're beautiful." Brendon's voice was fast and filled with awe, and he propped himself on one arm so he could look at Ryan while he spoke. "You have such beautiful eyes. And your hair is so soft; I want to touch it all the time. I love your voice. I could listen to you read phone books, and I'd never get bored. You're so smart and kind and wonderful and… and I don't think there's anything I don't like about you."

Ryan smiled, his entire body feeling a pleasant warm glow. He wasn't entirely sure what they were doing, but he could totally get behind it.
"I think you're beautiful, too, Bren. You have the most beautiful eyes and smile and laugh. You're the sweetest person I know, and you care so much. You're so much smarter than I am. You're so perfect." Huh. What kind of declarations were they making, exactly?

Brendon looked down at him, this strange desperation in his eyes, and whispered, "I think you're perfect, too." And then he ducked his head, lips gently touching Ryan's, hesitant at the possibility of rejection but too far in to stop. 

There was no chance of Ryan rejecting him, not now that he felt the same need, and he kissed him back, threading fingers into Brendon's hair to try to hold him there as their lips moved gently against each others. 

When he needed to breathe, Brendon pulled back, gave Ryan one more gentle kiss, and lay back down beside him, starting up at the next bunk as he tried to catch his breath. "I've wanted to do that for a long time." 

Ryan couldn't help the stupid grin that broke over his face at hearing Brendon say those words. "I'm really really glad you did."

A dorky grin filled Brendon's face as well. "I've never kissed a guy before."


"I wanted it to be you."

Pride flooded through Ryan, and then he realized… "You were my first, too."

Brendon's eyebrows came together. "But… you've had sex before."

Ryan shrugged uncomfortably. "My history isn't exactly… normal. It's not what it should have been; it's not something you should ever compare to."

From the look on Brendon's face, he wanted to ask more, but instead, he curled against Ryan's side, and Ryan wrapped an arm around him, holding him close. 

The kissing became a pretty regular thing. Chaste gentle kisses in passing, deep probing kisses alone, long languid hours spent kissing in the bunks. In the midst of the chaos of tour, the quiet time shared between the two of them brought everything together. 

They lay in Ryan's bed, kissing slowly, having all the time in the world. Brendon was half sprawled on top of Ryan when he pulled back.

Ryan smiled slowly, still loving the way Brendon said his name. "Yeah?"

"Do you want to be my boyfriend?"

Ryan's smile widened. "I thought that's what we were doing."

Brendon shrugged. "Not officially."

"You just don't want any of the fans hitting on me."

Brendon met Ryan's eyes. "I just want to be yours."

An ocean of warmth flooded through Ryan's body at the words, and he shivered pleasurably. Brendon seemed pleased at his power over Ryan and bent to kiss him again. 

For a while, things were great. There were dates; there were make out sessions. Ryan and Brendon got to know each other in ways they never knew possible, learned things they'd never thought existed. 

Through it all, however, Ryan was always holding something back, always hiding something. He was protecting Brendon from the ugly truth of his past, protecting himself from the shame he felt. 

As things moved forward, as sex became a viable next step, Ryan began to pull farther and farther away. 

Ryan could have kicked himself in the balls when he saw Brendon's hurt face after Ryan rolled off him and lay beside him to cool off. He had turned Brendon down again. He was going to hate him soon and Ryan wouldn't be able to blame him. Who wanted to offer themselves up for rejection again and again? He certainly didn't, and he would never want that for Ryan. 

God, he was a horrible person. 

He walked in on Brendon jerking off one day, and instead of talking to him about it, instead of helping him out, he ran… but not fast enough that he didn't see the hurt that slapped across Brendon's young face. 

"Ryan? Can we talk?" Brendon's voice was quiet, almost hesitant. His body was still, possibly more so than Ryan had ever seen him. He'd been lying quietly beside Ryan for almost an hour, barely touching him, not initiating anything even though they had the hotel room to themselves. He was wearing a plain hoodie over a t-shirt and sleep pants, looking as young and innocent as ever, and it gripped Ryan's heart. 

"Always, Bren." 

"Did I… did I do something?" Brendon's voice was full of uncertainty and self-doubt. "Something wrong?" 

"No, Brendon." Ryan was firm on this. "You could never do anything wrong."

"Then why…?" Brendon's eyes were wide and confused, searching Ryan for answers even if it hurt him to hear them. "I've been waiting for you. I wanted this to be with you. And I thought you wanted that, too. But now… you don't want me. Is there something wrong with me? Is it that I don't have experience, that I don't know what I'm doing? Is it the ADHD? Is it the way I look or the way I act or that I can't stay still or that I can't shut up? Is it me? Ryan?"

Ryan had closed his eyes, his heart breaking. God knew he had never wanted this, never wanted sweet, beautiful Brendon to doubt for a moment that he was the most special and treasured thing in Ryan's life. He was hurting Brendon so much…

"Ryan? Please talk to me. Don't shut me out. Just tell me what it is, I'll—"

"Brendon, you are so perfect." Ryan finally opened tear filled eyes to look at Brendon, to look into the hurting eyes of the man he loved more than anything in the entire world. He turned onto this side a little, letting Brendon see all of his face and looking back at everything he loved. "You're everything I could ever need, everything I could ever want, and so much more. You're so much more than I deserve, and you deserve so much more than me. You're so beautiful and so innocent, so clean and wonderful, and there isn't anything I don't love about you. I love that you haven't been passing yourself around; I love that you waited for me. You have no idea how much I love that you saved yourself for me, God, Bren… I love the way you look, the way you talk, the way you act. I love the way you can't be still; I love the way you say whatever's on your mind, so honest and open about everything. I love you, so much, so fucking much, Brendon." He closed his eyes again, letting warm tears slip free and slide down his face. 

Brendon's fingers came up, gently tracing the tears on his face, softly, almost reverently, like Ryan was something precious. "Why, Ryan? Why don't you want me?"

Ryan shook his head, hard. "I want you, Bren. I want you so much. You have no idea… you don't know… the thoughts I have, the way I feel when I'm around you. The way you look at me, the things you say to me… I just want, so much. I want you, Brendon. I do." 

"Then… why?"

Ryan let a few more tears slip out, knowing that this was the end. He had to tell Brendon; he had to. There was no way around it. He couldn't keep secrets from Brendon; he had every right to know. He couldn't let Brendon doubt that he was the most important thing to Ryan, ever; he couldn't let Brendon think he was anything less than sweet beautiful perfection. 

"I have to tell you something," he whispered. 

Brendon didn't say anything, just waited quietly with his big brown eyes watching Ryan's every move. 

Taking a moment to wipe at his eyes, Ryan sat up against the headboard, drawing up his knees and crossing his ankles, feeling more vulnerable than he ever had in his entire life. This was Brendon, Brendon looking at him with those eyes, waiting for him… Brendon, who had been the reason for every decision Ryan had ever made.  Brendon

"I let Pete Wentz fuck me."

Brendon's eyes widened, certainly never having expected to hear that come out of Ryan's mouth unless it was some form of weird punch line to a joke that only Ryan understood. 


Ryan shook his head. "Please, Bren. Just let me get it all out and then you can say everything you want to." 

Brendon just nodded. 

Ryan took a deep breath. "I let Pete Wentz fuck me, back when we were trying to get the record deal. Pete wasn't feeling it, wasn't feeling us, but you wanted it so bad and I just wanted to make you happy, so that night I went over to talk to him… I talked for hours, I made so many promises and told him everything we were capable of, and he still didn't want us. I asked what he needed to sign us, and he said he wanted me to… he wanted me to blow him and then let him fuck me. And I did. 

"God, it hurt so much; it was so horrible. I was just so naked in front of him, so unsure, so uncomfortable, and he laughed at me. He fucking laughed at me the whole time, made me feel so stupid and worthless and so insecure. I made myself so fucking vulnerable, completely opened myself up to his scrutiny, and he just laughed." 

Brendon had a right to know every uncomfortable detail, every horrible part of Ryan's story, just how ashamed Ryan was, what Pete had made him, so Ryan told him everything and didn't hold back. 

"I blew him, and it was horrible. I had no idea what I was doing, and he just kept laughing. And then… then he made me… he made me finger myself while he watched, while he fucked my face. And then he fucked me, raw and rough. When it was over, when he was done laughing, he made me ride him. 

"I thought of you the whole time. How perfect you are, how you deserve everything in the world, how sweet and wonderful and beautiful you are. I just wanted you to be happy; I had to do everything I could to get that for you.

"And when I came back that night, fucked to pieces and so hurt and humiliated, you held me, just held me while I cried, like I wasn't some disgusting piece of shit."

He sniffed hard and wrapped his arms tighter around his knees, squeezing himself into a tighter ball. 

"That was the only time I'd ever been with a guy, the first and only time, and it was horrible. You asked me what gay sex was like, and all I could think about was how horrible Pete had made me feel, like I was stupid and worthless and pathetic, and I never ever wanted you to feel that way. 

"And then… then you talked about sex with Pete. I couldn't let him do that to you, and I told him so. He said to make it worth his while… He took me so hard and so deep and so rough… And then he told me that he was never going to fuck you in the first place, that I was just a game. I threw myself around for nothing, because I'm a stupid fuck who just lets Pete rip me apart from the inside out because I don't know how else to get him to listen to me." 

The tears were falling freely, and he couldn't stop the way his shoulders heaved. "I'm so sorry, Brendon. I'm so sorry. You deserve someone who isn't fucked up; you deserve someone who hasn't thrown himself around and let himself be ripped apart until he's not sure where the pieces are. I'm so scared to have sex with you, scared I'll get hurt again, scared I'll hurt you like Pete hurt me, even though I would never ever try to hurt you. But what if I did? I couldn't live with myself if I ever hurt you, and I have anyway, and I'm just so sorry. I'm so sorry!" 

He let himself fall apart then, hunching in on himself and sobbing. Brendon just stared at him, wide-eyed with shock and horror and hurt, and then he wrapped his arms around Ryan, pulling him against his chest and running a hand through his hair comfortingly as he rocked him.
A long time later, when Ryan finally got himself under control after several failed attempts, he pulled back. 

"Go ahead." His voice was hoarse, raw and rough from crying. "You can say it now." 

"Say what?"

"How disgusting I am. How you're ashamed of me. How you don't want to know me, much less be with me." 

Brendon shook his head hard, hair getting in his eyes. "No, Ry. Never. You will never disgust me. I will never be ashamed of you. I'll never wish I didn't know you. I'll never not want you, Ryan." He kissed Ryan's forehead slowly, lips lingering. "I love you, Ryan. All of you. I can't believe you did that for me… I'm so sorry you thought you had to. As long as I have you with me, I don't need record deals, I don't need to be protected from Pete or the world; I just need you. You're so brave and so strong; I could never do what you've done. I'm not strong enough." He took Ryan's hand, holding it firmly but gently on the bed between them. "I don't want to hurt you, Ry, not ever. I've waited for you this long; I will wait for you for forever. If that's what it takes, I will spend the rest of my life waiting for you, holding you when you're hurting, loving you every minute of every day. I love all of you, Ryan. No exceptions; no doubts. Just me and you and more love than I've ever felt for anyone. I want to wait for you, Ryan, and I would wait for you forever." 

Unable to do anything else, Ryan threw himself at Brendon, clinging to him as he cried and kissed him. 

Things got better after that. 

They still kissed and touched, still made out for hours so hot and heavy that Ryan had to go jerk off or risk explosion. Brendon still took them both to the edge but didn't push to go farther. He still treated Ryan like was the most important thing in the world. He was gentle with him—not like Ryan would break, not like Ryan needed to be coddled, but like Brendon wanted to take care of him—and that meant all the difference in the world to Ryan. 

"Hey, Bren?"

Brendon pulled back, breathing hard. "Yeah?"

"You wanna rub off on each other?"

The grin that broke across Brendon's face was so beautiful that Ryan immediately felt more confident. 

"Pants on or off?"

The uncertainty was back. "Oh..."

Brendon shook his head like it didn't matter, making the decision for him. "On, this time."

He crawled on top of Ryan, knowing it made him feel more comfortable to let Brendon take control. Lining up their hips, he sank down into jean covered friction, both of them moaning. 

The make out was sloppy, open gasping mouths with too much spit as they rolled their hips together, but it just felt so good

Feeling suddenly brave, Ryan pushed Brendon's hips and rolled them over, lying on top of him with a groan, tangling their legs together for a better angle, and pumping his hips. 

"Oh, God, Ryan," Brendon moaned, tossing his head back. "I'm so close. Please, Ryan…" With a strangled cry, he came, shaking hard and falling back on the bed. 

Ryan shifted so he was humping Brendon's thigh instead of his oversensitive cock, and Brendon lay still beneath him, watching him quietly. 

Ryan's face screwed up, hips moving furiously, breathing hard. Brendon watched as he came silently, mouth dropping open as his face smoothed out. 

Brendon smiled as they lay side by side, a little gross below the belt but not willing to get up just yet. "That was amazing, Ryan. That was so good for me. How was it for you?"  'Are you okay?' was the silent question.

Ryan smiled. "So good, Bren. So good." He kissed him, mouth open but soft and sweet, and Brendon couldn't help but sink into him. 

Rubbing off without pants came a little later, followed—a bit more hesitantly on Ryan's part—by hand jobs. 

There came a time when Brendon was dying to suck Ryan off and was killing himself trying not to bring it up too soon. 

"Ryan," he gasped into his mouth. "Can I suck you? Please? I want to, so bad." 

Ryan swallowed. AS hard as Ryan's words made him, he was still hesitant and unsure. "I… umm… I don't know if I can…"

"Please, Ryan? Let me suck you. You don't have to do it back if you decide you can't; I don't mind. Please, Ryan." 

Ryan just nodded, staring as Brendon slid his pants off and began mouthing his cock. Ryan arched up without meaning to; Brendon just felt so good

Not really knowing what to do but wanting to so bad, Brendon licked across the tip of Ryan's cock before gently sucking the head into his mouth. 

Ryan groaned, fisting the sheets and trying to keep his hips down, fighting the urge to push deeper into Brendon's mouth. 

Brendon fisted what he couldn't fit into his mouth, sucking enthusiastically, not letting it stop him when he pushed too far and gagged himself.
Ryan was a mess beneath him, groaning and fighting the urge to come right then. 

Brendon pulled off, breathing hard, and gently kissed Ryan's belly. "You can come in my mouth, if you want." And then he went down on him again. 

Just hearing Brendon say those words pushed Ryan to the edge, and he pushed Brendon back a bit, not off, just back so he wouldn't completely choke him when he came. 

Brendon gagged and sputtered a little, but he recovered fast, licking Ryan clean and wiping his mouth before smiling up at him. 

Ryan hesitated as they slowly switched places, aware of how eager Brendon was. Sliding Brendon's pants down, staring at his cock, hard from sucking Ryan off… Ryan froze, feeling like he was drowning as fear and intimidation washed over him. 


Ryan shook his head. "I can't, Bren. I can't. I'm sorry."

Brendon couldn't hide the disappointment in his eyes or his voice. "Oh. Okay. You can just jerk me off, if you want. I mean, if that's okay."

"I'm sorry, Bren," Ryan whispered, burying his face against Brendon's belly to hide his tears as he wrapped his hand around him. 

Two days later, after a soundcheck, Ryan pushed Brendon into a makeup room and locked the door behind him. Brendon grinned; he always loved it when Ryan took control. An impromptu make out session sounded pretty fantastic just then. 

And it was. Ryan's mouth was firm against his with only a touch of hesitancy making Brendon wonder what was on his mind. Long probing kisses, the touch of Ryan's nimble fingers running all over his skin. He was shaking and breathing hard when he finally pulled away to gasp for air. 

Ryan slid to his knees and buried his face in Brendon's crotch, making him buck uncontrollably. 

"Fuck… Ry? Ryan?" 

Ryan nuzzled him through his pants. "I want to, Bren. I want to blow you so much."

Brendon shook his head. "No, no. You said you weren't ready. You said—"

"Fuck what I said. I'm your boyfriend; I should be able to give you what you want whenever you want me to." 

"Ry, no… You don't have to do this now. You don't have to." 

"Yes, I do." 

Quick fingers pulled open Brendon's belt, undid his jeans, and bared his cock to Ryan's face. 

Ryan looked at it for a moment, trying to calm his breathing.  This is Brendon, he told himself fiercely.  This isn't Pete. He won't hurt you; he won't laugh at you, ever. Brendon loves you. He loves you. 

He wrapped his lips around Brendon's cock before he could chicken out, sucking gently as Brendon thumped his head back against the wall with a groan. "Fuck, Ry…"

Taking that as encouragement, Ryan pushed down a little farther, licking at Brendon's cock, sucking it in his mouth. 

Brendon was never quiet, and in this moment, Ryan had never loved it more. Every sound Brendon made was praise and encouragement, telling Ryan just how good he was doing, how good he was making Brendon feel. Ryan had never felt so powerful, so good

"Fuck, fuck, Ry… Fuck, I love you." 

Ryan humming his appreciation made Brendon buck up slightly and made beautiful sounds spill out of his mouth. Ryan reached up for Brendon's hand and put it to his hair, desperately needed Brendon to touch him then. Brendon slid his fingers into Ryan's long hair, not pulling or directing him in anyway, just a firm comforting presence that made Ryan moan. 

"Ry… Ry, I'm going to… I'm so close; I'm going to…"

Ryan pulled back a little bit as Brendon tensed up and came in his mouth. He licked Brendon through it and carefully pulled his pants back up, taking his time putting the belt back in place so he could calm down. Brendon pulled him up and kissed him gently. 

Ryan wrapped his arms around Brendon, burying his face in his shoulder and holding him tight. "Thank you, Bren. Thank you so much. I love you." 

Brendon hugged him back. "I love you, too, Ry. That was… you made me feel so good." 

Ryan nodded into his shoulder. "Me, too. I felt so good… I feel so good, Bren. Thank you." 

Brendon reached down between them, feeing how hard Ryan was against him, but Ryan shook his head. 

"Let me hold you, for just a minute. Please?" 

Brendon nodded, and they sunk to the floor together, wrapping around each other in a warm pile of long limbs. 

"I love you so much, Brendon," Ryan whispered, pressing a kiss to his temple. "Thank you for being so perfect." 

Brendon moved to kiss his mouth. "I love you, too, Ryan. Forever." 

"We've almost fixed everything Pete did to you, hmm?" Brendon murmured as he and Ryan lay wrapped together against the headboard of their hotel room, watching a movie. 

Ryan stiffened just the smallest amount and nodded. "Almost." 

"Only thing left is for you to be inside me?" 

Ryan started a bit. "You… you want me to…?"

Brendon smiled at him. "Of course I want you to." 

"Oh." Ryan blinked. "Oh." 

Brendon smiled. "You don't really like being on the bottom, do you?"

Ryan hesitated, then shrugged, muttering, "I don't really know." 

"Well, I know I do." 

"You… How? How do you know?"

Brendon laughed. "I like having my fingers in there." 

"You… oh." Ryan was pretty much at a loss for words, which was a pretty rare thing. 

"I mean, we can try it both ways, sometime, if you want. I just…"

"What?" Ryan turned his full attention to Brendon, hearing the change in his voice. "You what?"

Brendon took a breath and then met Ryan's gaze. "I don't want you to fuck me to get over Pete." 

Ryan's eyes widened. "No, Bren… I would never…"

"I don't mean like a rebound, or something. I know you love me." 

Ryan was amazed with just how comfortable Brendon was when he said that; when he even thought about Brendon loving him, he was awestruck and speechless. 

"I mean, I want you to want to do it. I don't want you to feel like you have to do it to be a good boyfriend or because you're trying to prove you can. I just want us to want it."

"I… okay." 



Brendon smiled his beautiful smile at Ryan. "Good." 

Ryan went to talk to Pete on their next day off. He didn't tell Brendon, just told him he had something he had to do that day. Brendon was put out; he had hoped they could spend the day together. However, he trusted Ryan, and when Ryan said he had to do something and that he'd make it up to him later, he kissed him goodbye and went to go hang out with Spencer. 

"I don't belong to you." Those were the first words out of Ryan's mouth as soon as Pete let him into his house, and God, they felt good to say. "I'm not yours. I'm not your toy or your plaything. I'm not Patrick; I'm not so in love with you that I'll let you treat me like shit just so you won't leave me. I'm not Ashlee; we can't treat each other like shit and then fuck like rabbits anyway. I'm not yours."

Pete laughed, and as much as Ryan hated hearing the sound, it wasn't quite as painful as he remembered it being, didn't have as much power over him. "I wouldn't want you to be my Patrick or Ashlee, hell no." 

Ryan shrugged. "I won't be your Gabe or Mikey or William. I'm not just some thing you can fuck whenever it pleases you; I'm not yours to play with. It doesn't matter that I never meant anything to you, that fucking me was just a game to you.  I'm not yours." 

"Yeah?" Pete challenged. "Whose are you, Ryan? Who?"

"I'm mine," he said firmly. "I always have been. And now I'm Brendon's." 

"Brendon?" Pete laughed. "That kid is the reason you're here? Trying to 'cut ties' or whatever so he doesn't get mad, so he doesn't find out?"

"He already knows." 

"So he found out what a sick fuck you are, Ryan baby? Huh?"

"I told him. And he loves me still. It doesn't change anything."

"Like fuck it doesn't!" 

"It doesn't." Ryan pushed past him to the door. "I belong to Brendon now. And I never belonged to you. Goodbye, Pete." 

"I talked to Pete," Ryan said softly, running his fingers through Brendon's hair as they lay in bed together the next night. 

"Yeah?" Brendon's eyes widened. "What happened?"

Ryan shrugged. "I told him I never belonged to him, and that I'm not his to play with anymore. I belong to you now." 

Brendon smiled happily, proud and pleased. 

"I feel so much better," Ryan sighed. "It's like this huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders. I've been letting Pete hold me back all this time, but now… now I'm free to be yours, completely yours, with nothing to hold me back." 

Brendon's grin spread across his face even farther. "I'm so happy, Ryan."

"You know what? Me, too." 

Ryan bent to kiss him, and when he pulled back, Brendon whispered, "Make love to me?" 

Ryan smiled at him and kissed him again as an answer. 

Without Pete holding him back, he didn't have to be afraid of Brendon or afraid of himself. He was completely comfortable in his skin, free to be cocky motherfucker Ryan Ross… just without the mother fucking, of course. The only person he ever wanted to be fucking was Brendon… and maybe letting Brendon fuck him, too. He loved Brendon and trusted him completely, trusted him enough to let him fuck him, if he ever wanted to. 

After, they came down together in a warm tangle of limbs. 

"I love you so much, Ryan," Brendon whispered, kissing his jaw. 

Ryan smiled. "I love you, too. Thank you for waiting for me." 

"You're worth waiting for, Ryan." 

"So are you." 

Brendon smiled again, a small happy smile filled with love. "I love you," he said again, not knowing what else to say and not sure he could ever say it enough. 

"I love you, too, Brendon Urie. Forever." 

I Feel Like A Stupid Teenage Boy

Title: I Feel Like A Stupid Teenage Boy
Author: GwenCarmichael
Pairing: Frank/Mikey
Rating: PG
Word Count: 2982
mcr_bingo prompt: Pairing—Frank/Mikey
Disclaimer: In the words of Gru from Despicable Me… "Any relation to persons living or dead is completely coincidental."
Summary: Frank's falls in love with Mikey but knows he can never tell him.   
Author's Note:  Halfpennymcr asked for a sequel to Stupid Teenage Girl so...

I Feel Like A Stupid Teenage Boy

Frank was fucked. 

Not literally, thank God. It wasn't that he didn't want to be—every part of him wanted to be—but if he was literally fucked, that would make this mess even messier. Literally and figuratively. 

Since Mikey had opened up to him two months before about how lonely he was, Frank had made him his special project, going out of his way to spend time with Mikey. They'd go out for coffee, lunch, late night sugar fixes. They'd gone to malls, tourist attractions, movies, comic books stores. They'd even gone together when Frank got a new tattoo. 

And over the course of it all, through all the pranks, heart to hearts, and laughs, Frank had done the unthinkable. 

He'd fallen in love with Mikey. It was a lose-lose situation all around. The best thing for him to do was keep his mouth shut. Pine over Mikey in secret, silently jerk off to thoughts of him, keep being the best friend Mikey needed. 

The second option had two outcomes, both shitty. 

If he told Mikey, there was a strong chance Mikey would reject him. He probably wouldn't be too harsh about it—Mikey was never intentionally cruel—but rejections was still rejection. Then things would be awkward between them, no matter how much they denied it. 

On the slim possibility that Mikey wanted him, Frank would be killed. Gerard would kill him for fucking his brother; Brian would kill him for fucking up the band. Bob and Ray… Frank wasn't sure how they'd react, but he was pretty sure it wouldn't be with wolf whistles and high fives. 

It was official. Frank Iero was completely and totally fucked. 

Frank lay awake in his bunk, staring at the bunk just a few inches above his head. The bus was quiet; the sounds of the road mixed with Gerard's snuffling sleep sounds and Ray's snores. Bob and Mikey slept silently, and Frank… Frank didn't really sleep anymore. Sometimes he'd get lucky, and a show would be so draining that he'd be ready to collapse by the time they got back to the bus. Usually, though…

Usually he'd lie in bed for hours, wishing he could stop thinking about Mikey even though he knew he never could. 

"What's up, Frank?" Gerard settled next to him on the bus couch, cup of coffee in both hands. 

Frank glanced over and shrugged, not really watching the black and white B movie he'd put in to distract him from the sounds of Mikey, Ray, and Bob gaming in the back of the bus. He attempted nonchalance and a smooth half-grin. "Nothing. What's up with you, G Way?"

Gerard rolled his eyes and took a long sip of his coffee. "Are you okay? Something wrong?"

Frank's mask began to slip. "What? No, I'm great."

Gerard clearly saw through his transparent pretense. "C'mon, Frank. You don’t have to lie, not to me."

"I'm cool, Gee. I'm good."

"You don't have to be so strong that you can't let me in. I'm not going to think you're any less of a man or something." Gerard sighed. "I know you're not sleeping. You're tired all the time and withdrawn and so still. It's completely unlike you, Frank. I know there's something wrong. I want to help or at least listen. You can talk to me, Frankie. Nothing you could say could make me love you any less than I do."

For a moment, Frank felt the walls in his eyes go down. This hurt, it hurt so much… but he couldn't. If he told Gerard, then everything was over. The band, his friendships, his life…

"I can't, Gee," he whispered. "I can't."

To his credit, Gerard didn't push him or storm off; he set down his coffee, pulled Frank to his chest, and held him tightly. 

Things didn't get any better. Mikey still need him to be his best friend, and he couldn't deny him that just because it broke Frank's heart to be around him. 

They went out together in almost every city, it seemed: coffee shops, stores, city streets. 

And Frank spent hour after hour hanging off Mikey's every word, memorizing his laugh, the different tones of his voice, the way he said certain words. 

He found himself watching Mikey closer than ever, starting at his slender fingers, the fall of his bangs, the different shades in his eyes. 

Mikey had quirks. He was gangly, unsure of himself at time, quiet. Slow to smile, slow to anger. Feeling so deeply that I consumed him at times. 

Frank not only loved each and every one of Mikey's quirks but loved Mikey himself even more because of them. 

He just couldn't ever have him. 

"Spill, Frank." Mikey sucked the straw of his soda, drawing Frank's eyes to his lips for a moment. They were sitting in a mall food court, Mikey's new pair of jeans in a bag at his feet. 

"What?"  Shit

"C'mon, Frank. We hang out all the time, just the two of us. Did you think I wouldn't notice something was wrong?"

The knowledge that Mikey thought about him didn't have time to make Frank tingle pleasantly. All he could think was that he had to fight hard and fast before everything came tumbling down around him. Frank shrugged. "Maybe I'm getting sick."

"What's going on, Frankie?"

Frank just shook his head. 

"I don't think I've ever seen you this quiet, not even when you're dying of your latest disease. What's going on?"

Frank shook his head desperately, not trusting himself to speak. 


"I can't, Mikey Way," he whispered. "I can't."

Mikey just looked at him with the saddest eyes Frank had ever seen and made him want to die. 

Frank was so miserable that all he wanted to do with the rest of his life was lie in his bunk and cry, clutching his pillow to muffle the sound. He wanted Mikey so badly that it hurt, physically, mentally, emotionally… He was in agony. It was incurable and insufferable, something he was going to have to bear in his heart for the rest of his life with no chance of relief or release. 

It was his own fault. He was on top of the world; he was in a killer band, made killer jams, had killer fans. He was changing lives, saving lives, changing the world for kids everywhere. He was living his dream; he had everything he'd ever wanted. 

But it wasn't enough. It would never be enough. 

He wanted Mikey. No, he needed Mikey. He needed to get this off his chest; he needed things to go back to the way they were before, when he could still spend an afternoon with Mikey without wanting to cry, when he could be around Gerard without the guilt making him nauseous. 

He didn't want to play anymore. His heart just wasn't in it, not the way it should have been, not the way he demanded that it be. He wasn't the crazy little cyclone monster on stage, destroying sets and attacking his bandmates. He spent his days lying listlessly, listening to his iPod when he could stand the music, watching the world fly by in a blur outside the window. It just didn't matter anymore. 

This was unacceptable. He was throwing his life away. So he couldn't have Mikey. Big deal. He'd lived twenty-six years of his life without Mikey Way loving him like that; he could most certainly live the rest. The past five years had been great—no, they'd been fucking amazing. He wouldn't allow himself to let down the fans, let down the band, let down himself because he couldn't get himself together. So he was going to get over Mikey. He was. It was just that simple. 

It was not that simple. 

He roomed with Mikey at the hotel the very next night. It wasn't by choice; it was just a random occurrence that was terribly timed. 

Mikey was lying on his bed, across the room, and Frank couldn't help but stare. He was sprawled out on his stomach reading a comic book, and Frank laid on his own bed, mesmerized by the dip of the small of Mikey's back, the swell of his ass. Oh, God. He buried his face in his pillow, wondering if he could smother himself to death like this. 

"Frankie? What's going on?" Mikey asked, watching him with his eyebrows drawn together in confusion. 

For a moment, Frank strongly considered just lying there and ignoring him. Or maybe smothering himself harder. Both were tempting…
But he rolled onto his side and looked at Mikey. "I have to tell you something."

Immediately, Mikey tossed the magazine onto the floor and sat up on his side of the bed, giving Frank his full attention. Frank had never been so conscious of the space between them, so conscious of his own body and his awkward movements. 

"I have to tell you something," he repeated. 

Mikey waited patiently, but when no further information seemed forthcoming, he gently prodded, "What, Frankie? What is it?"

"I… You… Since you told me…" He took a deep breath. "I love you, Mikey."

Mikey watched him with level eyes. Nothing ever took Mikey by surprise, and if it did, he never showed it. Then, slowly, he said, "Yes. I know that. I love you, too. I've told you that a hundred times; so have you."

Frank shook his head quickly. "No, Mikey. Not like that. It's more than that. I'm in love with you, Mikey.

"And I'm sorry. I know I shouldn't; I know it's going to ruin the band. It's stupid; I'm stupid. I feel like a stupid teenage boy who falls hopelessly in love with his best friend who he can never have. And I'm sorry to do this to you. I'm so sorry, Mikey. I'm so stupid; I can't believe I—"

"You're not stupid, Frankie." Had they had this conversation before? It seemed strangely familiar, just with the roles reversed. "You don't have to be sorry for anything." Mikey was quiet again before he softly said, "Really, Frankie? You're in love with me."

"Yes. Oh, God, yes." And it all came spilling out then. It seemed that once he started, he couldn't stop, and it just felt so good to say it finally. "You're so beautiful, Mikey. You're funny. You're level-headed and honest and loyal. You're so fucking smart; you get me, you get me so good. And I think about you all the time; I can't stop thinking about you no matter how hard I try. I just want you so much."

Mikey's eyes were wide and there was a light in them that Frank couldn't identify. He waited… and waited… but Mikey didn't say anything else. 

"Mikey?" he whispered. "Mikey? Please say something."

"I… I love you, too."

Then it was Frank's turn to gape silently. "You… what?"

"I love you, Frank. I have forever… since you joined the band, maybe? I don't know, really… But these last two months, when you've been doing so much with me, since we've spent so much time together… God, Frank, you're just so perfect. Do you know that? Do you know how crazy and funny and smart and beautiful and cheesy you are? Do you know how much I love you because you care so damn much?"

"Mikey…" Could this really be happening? Was Mikey really saying he loved him, too? That he wasn't alone in this?

"Can I… Can I kiss you, Frankie?"

Frank just nodded, scrambling to sit against the headboard as Mikey crossed the room, eased onto the bed, and then pressed his mouth to Frank's. 

Oh, God. This was what dying felt like. Or maybe living for the first time? Mikey's lips were soft and moist against his, warm and firm, and Frank just wanted this to last forever. He made a noise of complaint when Mikey pulled back, and Mikey gave him a little smile. 

"Shh…" he whispered, moving closer, straddling Frank's thighs and threading his fingers in Frank's dark hair before ducking closer to kiss him again. 

There was tongue this time, Mikey's tongue gently sliding across Frank's lips and into his mouth to move against his own. Frank gave a desperate little whimper and clutched at Mikey's back, never wanting him to leave. 

When they finally broke apart for a breath, Frank whispered, "Sleep in my bed tonight?"

Mikey gave him another little smile. "I'm not that kind of boy, Frankie."

Frankie's heart sank. "What do you mean?"

"I'm not the kind of boy who puts out that fast."

Frank grinned. "Yeah? What kind of boy are you?"

Mikey moved to Frank's side, curling up against his chest and tangling their fingers together. "The kind of boy who wants to watch lame movies with you and kick your butt at video games. The kind of boy who wants to be able to bring you home to his family. The kind of boy who wants to be able to kiss you whenever he wants." 

Frank swallowed. "I can be that boy for you."



"Good. Cuz I want you to be." He pressed his cheek against Frank's chest, happier than he could ever remember being.

Mikey was gone when Frank woke up the next morning, but there was a text on Frank's phone, which was lying on the pillow beside him.  'Out with G. C u on bus.'

Frank fell back against the pillow, not even caring that he was grinning like a lovesick idiot. He was such a stupid teenager. 

The high took a nose-dive pretty quickly, unfortunately, the feeling in his stomach going from giddy to guilty in just a couple seconds. He avoided the rest of the band members as they got on the bus, sure that they knew, even though there was no way they could. And wasn't it just his luck that Brian had chosen this week to spend on tour with them?

He hung out with Mikey for a bit, playing video games and fooling around, but kept glancing at the door, sure Bob was going to break it down at any moment and beat Frank to a pulp. Mikey laughed it off, soundly kicked Frank's ass at their game, kissed him quickly, and left to go catch up with Brian. 

As for Frank? He hid in his bunk like a teenage coward hiding from his boyfriend's brother and family… which he was. 

It didn't last. Gerard cornered him after the show, taking his arm and leading him outside the venue where they could be alone. The night air was cool, but Frank was still burning up, guilt and fear and a feeling that the end was near overwhelming him. 

And then Gerard hugged him.  Hugged him. 


"I'm so happy for you, Frankie." Gerard's little kid smile was wide and honest, and Frank blinked at him. 

"Umm… You… How?"

Gerard shrugged, like it was obvious. "Mikey told me, this morning. We tell each other everything, duh."

Oh, right. "Oh. So… you're not mad?"

"Mad? Of course I'm not mad. I'm so happy for the two of you!" Then he got suspicious. "Why would I be mad, Frankie?"

Frank scuffed his shoe at the asphalt. "Cuz I'm with your brother," he mumbled. "Like, together, with him."

Gerard laughed. "Yeah, I know that. What, did you think I was going to kill you?"

Frank shrugged. "I certainly didn't expect this."

"You're waiting for the older brother speech?"

Frank shrugged again. "I guess, yeah."

Gerard just laughed. "I'm shit at that. Mikey's always been the one looking out for me; I don't think I ever had to threaten anyone he ever wanted. I'm not gonna bite you, Frankie. Jesus. I haven't been this happy in… in a long time. Just as long as you don't get hurt—either of you. You're my brother, Frank. I want you both to be happy, and if you can both be happy, together, well… then I'm happy."

Gerard smiled at him and suddenly got an armful of Frank as Frank launched himself at him, wrapping his arms around Gerard, squeezing him tightly, and kissing the side of his head. "Thank you, Gee. Thank you so fucking much." 

He had the Ways on his side; that was what gave him the courage to get on the bus and do what he did next. 

Everyone was in the living area already when he and Gerard got back, and Frank made a beeline for Mikey, plopped down beside him, and took his hand in his. "Mikey and I are together." 

Mikey smiled, looking a little surprised but entirely pleased. Gerard already knew, so his reaction was still that giddy smile from before. Frank anxiously watched Bob, Ray, and Brian, whose faces weren't really any different. 

"Umm… guys? Me and Mikey? Together? Boyfriends? You know?"

Ray laughed. "You thought we'd hate you?"

Frank looked uncertain. "Umm… yes?"

"We could never hate you, Frankie."

"But… what about the band?"

Bob shrugged. "You're not planning to leave, are you?"

He shook his head quickly. 

"Just don't get hurt—either of you. That's all we care about."

Ray nodded fervently, hair bouncing slightly. 


Brian grinned at him. "I'm just happy you're the clean one on this bus. I shudder to think what it would be like if this was Gerard… I don't want to find anything on any of my bus attacks with the Febreeze bottle. You keep your shit together and out of my line of sight." 

Frank grinned. For a moment, he considered telling them all that he and Mikey were taking this slow… and then decided not to. This was no one's business but his and Mikey's. 

As Mikey leaned closer, forcing Frank to drape an arm around him and pull him closer still, Frank had never felt so happy.