Pair: WildCat x SMii7Y
Word count: 2987
Trigger Warning(s): none
Writer: Me/johnny_writes (wattpad)
Dedicated to: @derpydoodlez
It was still an hour till midnight, but I drunk. No, drunk isn’t the right word for it. I was blitzed. Blitzed and surrounded by the best people in the world.
“I love you, John.” I hung off of him whilst Tyler and Jay tried to light up the cheap firecrackers Jay had bought from Tesco as a surprise Jay kept trying to light the whole box, and Tyler was doing his best to make sure no one blew off their fingers, whilst Sami watched from a lawn chair, her belly big and ankles swollen. “I do. Love you. I was an ass.”
John looked great. He’d worn a simple sweater with jeans that highlighted how handsome he was. Sometimes I forgot. “I love you too.” I didn’t know if John was drunk but perspiration beaded his upper lip, and he sipped his vodka and Pop! through a Krazy straw.
A bottle rocket zipped through the air, over Tyler’s shoulder, narrowly missing his ear, and exploded with a frantic crack. Jay’s buddies hooted and crowded. He seemed to have reverted to his teenage self in their presence, but he deserved this time to be dumb—parenthood offers no vacations or sick days. Tyler silently begged me for help before telling off my sister’s fiancé for shooting fireworks at his face.
“I think I love that guy too.”
“Yeah?” John said. “Does he know?”
“No. Maybe.” Tyler wrestled the lighter from Jay and then lit Roman candles, which sent streamers of blue and red and green sparks into the air. Jay pumped his fists and hollered. “It doesn’t matter, though. We’re just friends.”
“You’re obviously more than that, Lucas. Any idiot can see it.”
I couldn’t think of the future and not imagine all the ways it could fall apart. “I don’t think I deserve him.”
John shrugged. “Probably not. But he doesn’t deserve you, either. Maybe that’s why you’re perfect for each other.”
“Do you think it could last?”
John sucked up his drink and tossed the empty cup onto the ground. It’s going to be a pain in the ass to clean everything up. Fuck it.
“You like bacon, right?” John asked.
“So, when you’re offered bacon for breakfast, do you refuse because you’re worried about what’s going to happen when it’s gone?”
“No!” John smacked me in the chest. I stumbled back a little, not expecting him to do that. The rings on his fingers hurt more. “You eat that bacon and you love it because it’s delicious. You don’t fret over whether you’ll ever have bacon again. You just eat the bacon.” John stood in front of me and held my face between his hands. His expression was so solemn that it was difficult not to laugh. “Eat the bacon, Luca.”
A roar erupted from Jay and his friends. John and I turned in time to watch the plume of fire and sparks shoot into the air and explode like a supernova. Tyler winked at me from across the lawn.
“I’m assuming Tyler is the bacon in that analogy.”
“I need another drink.”
Tyler and I sat down on my unmade bed, the lights off, our hands intertwined. The TV blared in the living room. It was still ten minutes to midnight, but it could have been ten seconds, and I wouldn’t have cared.
I stared into his eyes, and I could vaguely see him staring back. I noted that Tyler’s entire personality was concentrated in his eyes; they were pale blue, of exceptional brilliance, depth and attraction. His gaze was at once piercing and caressing, naïve and cunning, far-off and intent. I took in every subtle detail I could see from the moon light that shone through my window. I had frozen Tyler’s face in my mind, committing to my memory of the curves of his fair cheeks and the way he would shiver ever so slightly when I touched him.
He laid his thumb on my lips to see if I’d pull away. I didn’t. He leaned closer. I could tell Tyler wanted to close his pale blue eyes, but he didn’t trust me not to leave him standing there.
When his lips were just almost touching mine, I shook my head. My nose rubbed against his.
“I’ve never done this before,” I said meekly.
“It’s okay,” he said.
“But it’s not, it’s going to be terrible.”
Tyler shook his head. “No it won’t.”
I shook my head a little more. Just a little. “You’re going to regret this,” I sighed.
That made him chuckle, so he had to wait a second or two before he kissed me.
It wasn’t terrible. Tyler’s lips were soft and warm, and I could feel his pulse in his cheek. I suppose it was good that I was so nervous, because it forced Tyler not to be. I could tell it steadied him to feel my trembling.
Tyler pulled away before he wanted to. He, I assume, hadn’t done this enough to know how to breathe.
When he pulled away, my eyes were mostly closed. The moon light shone through my window, and Tyler’s face caught every bit of it.
“Okay?” he whispered.
I nodded. He pulled me closer and kissed the top of my head. He tried to find my ear in the darkness.
“Come here,” he said. “I want to show you something.
I laughed. Tyler lifted my chin.
The second time was even less terrible.
Tyler cautiously grabbed the back of my head, his long fingers getting tangled in my hair, and brought me close to him, kissing me once more. His skin pressed against mine as he kissed my lips. He trailed gentle kisses down my neck, lingering only long enough in a spot to make me want even more. This was blissful, better than anything.
“I’m glad you like me too.” Tyler’s voice was so soft that I felt his words vibrate against my delicate skin. I rubbed my thumb on the side of his face, but didn’t move otherwise. “I don’t know how I would’ve taken it if you rejected my feelings towards you. It would have crushed me, if I’m being honest. I really do like you, Lucas.” His voice broke.
“You don’t have to talk about this.” I tried to imagine being rejected by someone I fancy, and I could. I felt a pain in my heart when I did.
Tyler buried his face in the crook of my neck. “I just wanted you to know.” He pulled me closer to him, almost as though he was afraid of losing me.
He slid his hands under my shirt, beginning to pull it over my head. I thought it must’ve been midnight because I heard shouting, but I ignored it. Only Tyler and I existed.
My bedroom door burst open. “Luca! Lucas, you gotta come quick!”
I scrambled up off my bed. “Jesus Christ, Jay, we’re fucking busy in here!”
Jay was crying. I didn’t notice that at first because I was freaking out my sister’s fiancé walking in whilst Tyler and I were about to get naked and do the dirty. But when I did, I knew something was wrong. “Lucas, please. It’s Sami.”
• • •
I watched my sister’s fiancé chew his fingernails down to the quick, and then keep biting. He gnawed on the ends until they bled, and I finally had to pull his hands away from his mouth. He looked at his finger and shook his head.
“How long are they going to be in there?” he asked.
“I’m sure someone will be out soon.” The hospital waiting room was far from comforting, and our coffee cups sat forgotten on the small plastic side tables. We’d been waiting for more than an hour, starving for even the smallest scrap of news. Tyler had been the only one of us sober enough to drive, and we’d rush Sami—groaning in pain and clutching her belly—to the nearest hospital in John’s car. I wanted to call an ambulance, but Jay refused to wait.
“Do you think I should call your mother again?”
“You left her a message, right?”
Jay nodded. “I don’t think she has good reception on the train.”
Tyler held my hand and smiled when I glanced his way. It was difficult to think of anything other than what we’d been about to do when I looked at him, but Jay needed me, so I tried to pretend Tyler wasn’t there.
“Do you think she’s going to be all right?” Jay asked.
John’s eyes were half closed—he never could hold his liquor—but he said, “It was probably false labour. Sometimes it happens.”
Tyler and I agreed, but I’d seen the blood on Sami’s hands and between her legs. I didn’t know what it meant, but I doubted it was good.
“Well, she’d be the first Murron in history to be early to anything.” I tried to loan Jay my smile, but he wasn’t in the mood. Anything that anybody said in this unnerving waiting room was desperate.
Desperate was white noise, as far as I was concerned—it was the hope that gnawed and pulled at my heart with dirty fingers and sharp teeth.
Tyler couldn’t figure out which cup of coffee was his and so just took one at random. He grimaced. I sensed Tyler was going to say something, but Jay stood up, drawing our attention. I followed his line of sight to the doctor walking through the double doors. She was short and stocky, and carried herself with confidence. Jay rushed to meet her, and Tyler held my hand whilst we watched. I knew it was bad news the moment I saw her pinched lips and tired eyes. Jay went rigid, offering the doctor robotic nods as she explained what happened. We were too far away to hear.
“They’re going to take me to see Sami,” Jay said when the doctor left. “You should go home.”
“What about you?”
John stood, his keys jingling in his hand. “We’ll drive your car here and leave it in the parking lot.”
Jay nodded, but I doubted he’d heard the words.
“Mr. Marksman?” A nurse stood waiting by the doors.
I slugged Jay lightly in the arm. “She’s okay. You’re both going to be okay.”
“Yeah, Lucas. Sure.” Jay followed the nurse into the bowels of the hospital, and I watched him go. I jumped when Tyler touched my shoulder.
“We should get out of here.” he said. “Clean your house a little.”
“What do you think happened?” John asked.
“I think I’m not going to be an uncle anymore.”
• • •
John tried to make me sit in the front seat on the way home, but I refused. It was his car, after all. I stared at the streak of blood on the leather and wondered if the baby was already dead or if it had offered the world one mewling cry—a first and last protest—before succumbing to gravity.
We sat parked in my driveway for a while. I didn’t even realise we’d arrived until John looked at me in the rearview mirror and said, “We missed midnight.”
I didn’t know if the stain would come out or if some shadow of it would always remain. “We didn’t miss it,” I said. “It just happened without us.”
It seems silly to worry about the arbitrary moment some person long dead declared to be the end of one year and the beginning of another, as if our attempts to divide time into meaningful chunks that actually mean anything. People wait for the countdown to tell them that it’s okay to believe in themselves again. They end each year with failure, but hope that when the clock strikes twelve, they can begin the new year with a clean slate. They tell themselves that this is the year things will happen, never realising that things are always happening; they’re just happening without them.
“I should get home,” John said.
“Are you going to be okay?” Tyler asked.
When John’s BMW disappeared into the night, Tyler hugged me close. I wanted him to kiss me, to kiss away everything that had happened. To kiss me until time reversed and we were back in my room. But you can’t live in the past; you can only visit. I wasn’t sure what was happening between us, but I didn’t want it to happen without me.
“Happy New Year, Lucas.”
“Happy New Year, Tyler.”
Tyler and I stood in my bedroom, the lights off, our arms wrapped around each other. There was a calming silence filling the void around us.
I was staring into his eyes, and could vaguely see him staring back. I again noted that Tyler’s entire personality was concentrated in his eyes; they were pale blue, of exceptional brilliance, depth and attraction. His gaze was at once piercing and caressing, naïve and cunning, far-off and intent. The bright moon shone through my window, and I froze Tyler’s face in my mind, committing to memory the curves of his cheeks and the way he shivered slightly when my hesitant fingertips touch him.
Tyler’s skin pressed against mine as he kissed my lips and my neck, lingering only long enough in one spot to make me want more. This was prolonged euphoria, better than any blow job I’ve had—which was none.
“I love you.” He spoke so softly that I felt his words vibrate against my skin. I stroked Tyler’s hair but didn’t move otherwise, likewise I had hours ago.
“I love you too.”
Tyler rested his forehead against mine. “I just wanted to remind you.” He pulled me to him and kisses me as if that might erase his memories of the past. He kissed me like my lips were air and he couldn’t breathe. Tyler slid his hands under my shirt and pulled it over my head. I couldn’t unbutton his shirt fast enough. I lost track of time. We were arms and legs and lips, fearless and frenzied. He was warm—warmer than I expected, and it was nice.
“Is this all right?” he asked as if I wasn’t the one who’d wrestled him out of his black dress pants. “You’ve had a lot to drink.”
“It’s good,” I murmured, I had sobered up by this point. “Is it okay for you?” I looked into Tyler’s eyes, feeling self-conscious now. Standing in front of Tyler was the most naked I’d ever felt.
“Better than okay.”
“Have you ever done it with a guy?” I asked. Tyler shook his head
I was silent and so was he. I gave him a kind smile and said, “We can stop.”
“I don’t want to. Unless you do.”
You think that by holding someone hard will bring them closer. You think you can hold them so hard that you’ll still feel them, embossed on you, when you pull away.
Every time I pulled away from Tyler, I felt the gasping loss of him. I feel like the next time when I ripped myself away, I’d lose some skin.
I held his beautiful face and rubbed the side of his face with my thumb. I bent my neck back and kissed him like I never have before. Like I wasn’t scared of doing it wrong—like it was the end of the world.
I led Tyler to the bed, and we eased under my sheets, letting instinct and hormones take control.
If I weighed 156 pounds and Tyler 162 pounds, and the distance separating us was fractionally nothing, then the gravitational force between our noncelestial bodies was approximately equal to three times the force a seat belt applies to a restrained passenger in a vehicle traveling at sixty-three miles per hour when it collides with a stationary object.
You can’t fight gravity. Gravity is love. Love requires us to fall. Anyway, I couldn’t have reached the escape velocity required to break free of Tyler even if I’d wanted to.
“Why do you keep laughing?” Tyler asked. His skin was damp with sweat, but I didn’t mind.
“Your scruff tickles my nose.”
“Then stop kissing my neck.” Tyler paused. “On second thought, definitely don’t stop.” He pulled me on top of him, running his hands up my bare back, holding me like the last note of a song. His hands were soft against my back, rough fingers massaging my tense muscles, relaxing them.
When Tyler kissed me, I could hardly believe it was real. Believing Tyler liked me and wanted to be with me seemed more implausible than being abducted by aliens. If I thought about it too long, doubt burrowed into my brain, multiplying and feeding on my fears.
Tyler sat up, breathing heavy. “I think my lips may fall off.”
“That would be unfortunate. And so damb gross.” I grabbed one of the glasses of water sitting on my desk, and drank. My tongue felt heavy and my lips raw.
“Shut the fuck up with the stupid ‘damb’ shit.” Tyler laughed softly.
I stuck out my tongue playfully at him and set my glass back down on my desk. The clock in my room suffered its preliminary strain and struck the hour. “Let’s just go to sleep.”
I climbed off of Tyler, laying down beside him. I felt him snake his arms around me loosely, his arms feeling like cotton. He pulled me close to him, kissing the back of my neck gently. I had never dreamed of anything as nice as this, as nice as Tyler, sleepy-soft and warm…warm through.
“Goodnight,” I said in a quiet, private voice.
He caught me by surprise, and before I could help myself, my heart was breaking for him. Like it didn’t have anything better to break over…