I (Heart) Pamela Crimson
Summary: Mike finds a drawing in Will’s notebook of a
girl with curly blonde hair, and above it, the words I (heart) Pamela Crimson.
He doesn’t know why it makes him uncomfortable, but he starts to pay more
attention to Will after that – and more attention to himself, too.
Guys this is my first Stranger Things oneshot ever and I’m sorry if it’s not that good. Oh, and english is not my first language, so sorry if I made any mistakes!
I want to tag @eddieisalover because I said I would tag her in my first fanfic xD also @milagric because she always likes my posts and I love her for that <3 and I think I used a reference to one of @gaywillbyers fanfics in this. The one where Will color codes the notes in his notebook? Yeah, I think so.
Anyway, enjoy your Byeler <3
“Hey Will, can I borrow your notebook?”
The smaller boy looked over his shoulders to a smiling Michael Wheeler, who after all the past year’s mourning over Eleven’s disappearance, seemed to have all figured out. Will tried his best to be happy for Mike, since he was shining brightly with his “kind of” girlfriend – okay, girlfriend – but the more he thought about it, the more it made him sad.
Eleven – Jane, for everyone else – was actually really nice and he loved her as sister. So, Will kept all his feelings for Mike Wheeler to himself, and hoped a black hole would eat them while he died every single day.
“Yeah, sure, Mike. Just a second.”
He grabbed a hand of papers in the back of the notebook – full of useless drawings, doodles and confessions he would never make to Mike – and took it off rather roughly, handing in to Mike not so subtly.
“Wow, what did you have there?” the taller boy smirked, and Will looked away so he could not see him blush.
“Shut up. Anyway, I didn’t write that much today in class, but since you were sleeping…”
“Now you shut up” Mike smiled, and Will could not help but smile too. “History is boring”
“Sure is, have fun with a lot more boring notes!” Will waved, and before Mike could say anything, he was gone.
Mike wanted to say you’re not boring. Nothing you do could ever be boring.
But Will didn’t know that.
Mike sat alone in lunch time, for there was going to be a history test the next morning, and he really had to understand the subject. So he opened Will’s notebook, expecting the colorful marks in every important points - and probably adorable cartoons of historical figures.
But what caught his attention was none of those things. In the upper corner of a page, there were random words and some swearing (who would say Will Byers could swear, even by writing), and a drawing. A drawing of a girl, with curly blonde hair, big blue eyes and a classy posture that he knew quite well. The girl was Pamela Crimson, and he didn’t have to read the words above to figure it out.
But he read anyway. And somehow, he found himself feeling a little angry.
I <3 Pamela Crimson
Pamela Crimson, a random girl who sat in the back of the room at science and history class, who always seemed to be surrounded by jerks and had the most annoying laugh.
Sure, she was pretty. A lot of girls in Hawkins were pretty, indeed.
But why Pamela Crimson?
Why a girl?
The last thought startled him a little. He was with El, the girl he called for 353 days, the one he dreamed about, and talked about, the one who saved him. The only girl he would ever love.
So why was he mad? Shouldn’t he be happy for Will? For finally getting back to normal? To finally start to like someone, and trust someone else? It’s been over a year since that horrible thing got him, and even though he still had nightmares once in a while, he was much better.
So, why was he uncomfortable?
Mike started to overthink. By overthinking, he started to stare and glare at the drawing in the paper, not even blinking. The history test was soon forgotten, and Lucas had to call him three times so he would listen.
“MIKE!” he shouted, and Mike looked at him confused.
‘What the hell, Lucas?”
“Dude, you said you wanted to study, but you didn’t even turn the page!” he frowned, and when he was about to look at the doodle, Mike closed the notebook.
“I guess Will wants it back” he muttered, and Lucas looked at him weirdly.
“You bet. Lunch time is over”
“R-Really?” Jesus, how long has he been thinking?
“Yeah, Wheeler. Wake up!”
Mike sighed and followed the sea of students that left the lunch room and went to the corridors. He still knew nothing about history, but his feelings were a bigger problem.
Pamela Crimson. Tch.
“Mike” El greeted him with a peck in the cheek when he decided to visit her over at Hopper’s. He newest dad decided that she should receive a year of homeschooling before starting school for real, figuring out that she might not have had that much of an education back at Hawkins lab. Eleven was still a quiet girl, but she knew a lot of new words and was starting to socialize more, which made everyone – especially Mike – very happy. “How are you?”
“I’m fine” he blushed. “Though I have a history test tomorrow, and I know nothing.”
“Well, that’s bad.” she muttered. “I’ve been learning some history with dad today. Did you know Hawkins was founded more than four hundred years ago?”
Mike chuckled at her enthusiasm, which he found endearing. “Yes, I knew that. What else have you been studying? Tell me everything.”
He sat down at the table beside her. There were eggos in a plate and a lot of books and pencils all over it. Eleven liked studying, because it was a right that had been partially taken from her all these years. Now, she was almost getting to their level, all by herself, and Mike couldn’t be more proud. Besides, her bond with Hopper had gotten even stronger, and now she called him “dad”.
“I have daily new words, you know that right?” she asked rhetorically and Mike nodded.
“So, sometimes, dad lets me pick a word, some word I heard or one I read somewhere. You know what my new word is?”
He shook his head, smiling. El offered him an eggo, which he accepted gladly.
“Today’s word is… gay”
Mike almost choke with the food, coughing uncomfortably.
“I’m-I’m sorry” he coughed again. “What… What is the word?”
“Gay” she repeated, sounding a little confused. “You surely heard about it before. It’s a person who likes someone that’s similar to them. Not like you and me. It would be like… Me and Max”
“Do you like Max this way?”
“No” she blushed furiously, and turned to look at the plate of eggos. “It means boys who like boys and girls who like girls. I didn’t know it was possible, I find it kind of…” she struggled to find a word, and Mike helped her.
“Endearing.” She replied, happily. “I like this new word”.
Mike tried to kiss her when he was about to leave. He wasn’t surprised when he couldn’t do it.
Mike kept thinking about the definition of gay in his head. A boy who likes boys. A girl who likes girls. Could a boy like boys and girls at the same time? Could a girl like boys and girls at the same time? Would that be so insane?
He thought about Pamela Crimson. Cute Pamela Crimson, with her red sweaters and beautiful smile, laughing at some of Will’s nerdy jokes and blushing at one of his drawings. Adorable, sweet, kind Will Byers, kissing Pamela Crimson’s reddish lips in a Thursday afternoon after class, when no one is around and yet everyone knew something would happen eventually.
He thinks about Mike Wheeler, watching them from a distance, and clenching his jaw, mentally complaining that Will should be kissing someone else.
Nah. He shook that feelings and thoughts away. That’s stupid, Wheeler. You’re just concerned about him. You can’t have your best friend all to yourself forever.
However, sleep didn’t come. His brain mixed a lot of completely catastrophic scenarios featuring Will Byers and Pamela Crimson, and each of them looked terrible at his eyes. Will’s soft hair and brownish green eyes were constantly looping in his head, and he felt like a creep. Anxiety took over, insomnia showed up, and he only went to sleep when the sun rose and the smell of a failed history test filled up the room in its disastrous sadness.
“Man, I can’t believe you got an F” Dustin exhaled, unhappily. Mike, however, just wanted to go home and sleep until he died. “You got Will’s notes dude, he color codes them.”
“I know, alright? I know, dammit.” he sighed, and Lucas looked at him like he knew every single worry in his soul.
“Is it something with El?”
Mike eyed him, confused. “What?”
“Is it about El? Is she alright? Did you guys have a fight?”
Max snorted, and Mike, to be honest, felt like snorting too.
“Eleven and Mike? Fighting? It’s more likely Will becoming Superman or something”
“Hey!” he exclaimed, furrowing his brown that Mike hated to find cute. “I’m a damn hero!”
“Aaaaaaw, look at you swearing…!” Max started to pinch his cheeks, and Will blushed mercilessly.
“Stop it Max! We’re in the corridors…”
“No, this has nothing to do with El” Mike returned to the topic, even though he wanted to be left alone. He knew his friends wouldn’t stop bickering until he told the truth – but what was the truth? What was he feeling, anyway?
“Then what is it, man? You can tell us! You know we won’t judge” said Dustin, and the more he pleaded, the more Mike wanted to hide.
“Yeah! I mean, sure, if you want to keep this personal… But if it’s bothering you, we can help.” Will continued, acknowledging Mike’s obvious change of humor. Two days ago, he was shining bright like a diamond – now, he felt like burning the feelings department inside his brain.
“Thanks guys, but this is a very, very personal problem. It’s something I have to deal myself”
Excusing himself, Mike Wheeler left to his next period, and all four of his friends were staring at his back like he was a brand new person – and maybe he was.
Over the next few weeks, Mike had come to observe not only Will, and not only El, but himself. He kissed El in the lips every once in a while, and even tried more intense moves with her – the further a 15-year-old could. Every time he was with her, and every time he looked into her eyes, he knew: he liked girls.
But then, there was Will.
Will Byers, the boy with the bowl cut. The boy with artistic soul and good heart. The boy who survived the Upside Down and The Mind Flayer. The boy who came back to life. The boy he met at the swings when he was in kindergarden. The boy who has been his best friend ever since. The best thing he’s ever done.
When he was with Will, he felt like he could be anyone and be himself at the same time. He felt like he could be flawed, and felt like he could be perfect. He was loved so innocently and so intensely at the same time, and every time he looked at him his heart swelled and broke, because he was too good for all that crap.
And with crap, he means Upside Down, Demogorgon, Mind Flayer and, of course, Pamela Crimson.
So, every time he was with Will, he knew: he liked boys.
After everything that he and his friends been through, liking both sexes was the least weird thing ever. But still, he only heard about gays and lesbians – and not even good things. Society was conservative, people were prejudiced, feelings were confusing and apparently, Will liked girls.
But what if Will was like him? What if he liked boys too?
He felt like a creep, again. A freak, someone who should be hidden somewhere dark. Was there anyone like him? Was he only indecisive?
He had to tell someone. But who?
Mike was staring at the door for what felt like ages.
He knew what she was doing, and probably how she would react to him knocking at her door this time in the evening. He almost gave up many times, imagining the look in her face when he told her the truth – the horrible, messed up, weird truth.
But then, he decided to knock. She would find out anyway.
“Mom?” Nancy asked, her voice stuffed by the door.
“No… Hm, it’s… It’s Mike.” He stuttered, feeling all the confidence he had built up behind that door to vanish as soon as he started talking.
“Mike?” Nancy seemed a little startled. Mike never really talked to her, let alone knock at her door to do so. Nonetheless, Nancy tried to be rational, and concluded he wanted, perhaps, to ask just a stupid question or annoy her as always. “What do you want?”
“Can I come in? I need to talk to you” he gulped, asking himself why Nancy specifically. He could have just waited until he was completely mad or dying suffocated by his own feelings. Was he jumping to conclusions? Was his crush on Will just a misunderstanding?
“Come in” Nancy tried to not sound worried or confused, but those were the only words that could describe her tone of voice. Mike entered the room, messy with lots of books and notes for her final exams before college, and sit on the edge of the bed. Nancy stopped everything she was doing before and stared at Mike, worried.
And in that moment, he realized, things were about to change.
“I think I might be gay.”
Nancy gulped. She got a little bit closer and held his hand, and Mike somehow felt a lot weirder and a lot more comfortable at the same time.
“I’m not done yet.” he continued, and Nancy frowned, but let him speak. He blushed deeply, and took about five excruciating long seconds for him to confess again. “I also like… Girls.”
Nancy stared at him with an even bigger frown, but then just looked lost.
“How… Mike” she shook her head, extremely confused, still holding his head. Mike felt his heart starting to race painfully in his chest, his palms starting to sweat. “You can’t be gay if you like girls.”
“But…” he started again, but it was Nancy’s turn to stop him.
“Listen, Mike, I know you might be confused about your sexuality, but you can’t be gay if you like girls, and you can’t be straight if you like boys.” She said, so calmly, and Mike suddenly reminded himself why he came to Nancy.
“Is this about Will?”
Because Nancy would understand. She had been a confused teenager before, might still be. He couldn’t be there for her, but she was for him.
“How do you know?” he blushed and turned his gaze away, although he was smiling – and he could feel Nancy smiling too.
“Duh, have you seen the way he looks at you? He’s head over hills!”
Once he heard that, Mike felt his stomach flutter and he could definitely die right there. Will, in love with him? How surreal was that?
“And apparently, you feel the same way too” Nancy continued, and Mike turned to look at her.
“But I still love El. I mean, I do, but not like I did a year ago or something.”
Nancy sighed. “Yeah, I know how that feels.” She made a ‘been there, done that’ face, and suddenly he thought of Steve Harrington. “You know what you have to do Mike. Trust me, I know he feels the same. Go for it.” She smiled, and Mike felt a strange rush of love for Nancy that he hadn’t felt in so long.
Things were about to change.
Nancy. His annoying older sister who was nothing but the stereotypical teenage small town girl in his eyes, was now about to move to some college far away. His sexuality was a mystery, what would happen after all that, an even bigger one.
“You’re right. I gotta talk to him!” he jumped excitedly and rushed to the door, only to be stopped by Nancy’s yelling.
“Dammit, what is it?” he grumpily asked, his face all scrunched up. Nancy gave him a dirty look.
“You have to talk to your girlfriend first!”
Mike stared blankly at the wall for a fat second, and then let out an annoyed sigh.
“Geez, Nancy, I know that!” he scoffed, going down the stairs pretending like he wasn’t about to cheat on his beloved Eleven/Jane. Nancy rolled her eyes, but smiled nonetheless. Whether Mike liked boys or girls – or both, as he implied – Nancy didn’t care. He was her brother after all – the same annoying little brother.
And though things were about to change, she knew some things would always stay the same.
Mike biked his way to Hopper’s house. It was late, and he knew he wasn’t supposed to show up like this, but he had to. He had to tell El as soon as possible – or else he would explode. The more he thought about Will, the more he felt bad about his relationship with Eleven. Avoiding the grumpy face of Jim Hopper, Mike knocked softly on El’s window, wishing she wouldn’t use her powers – especially on him.
“Mike?” Eleven showed up seconds after, like she knew he was there all along. Mike reminded himself of El’s connection to other’s minds and psychic abilities, and suddenly felt afraid. He entered her room without any sort of permission, climbing onto the wooden windowsill with his long skinny legs.
Surprisingly, El didn’t ask him what was he doing there, why at that time in the evening, and why so suddenly.
She already knew.
“I don’t love you.” He opened up. He expected to feel sad, although the only feeling inside him was relief, and a little bit of concern. Jane’s face was blank and calm, like most of the time. “At least not like I did a year ago, or two years ago. I’m so sorry.”
Please don’t hate me. He wanted to say. He suspected she could somehow read his mind.
Eleven sighed, and, for his (another) surprise, hugged him.
“It’s okay.” She reassured him, with her soft head in his chest and her arms around his waist. He held her back and soothed her calm petite figure for what seemed to be the last time. “I don’t think I love you like that either.”
“I still love you, nonetheless” he reassured her, even though that wasn’t needed. “I’ll always love you.”
“I know.” She murmured, and they stayed like that for a long time, saying goodbye, saying hello, and saying until tomorrow with no words at all. Dancing with no music, swaying back and forth in a comforting way, like the best friends and soulmates they knew they were.
When Mike left her room, the moon shined brightly and Eleven knew exactly what to say:
“Hey, Mike” she called him once he got in the bike. He turned his head to her, expectantly.
“I know how you feel” she said, smiling slightly. Mike felt like he was looking at her for the first time. And she looked so beautiful.
“Guess I’m not the only one, then.”
He sped up his feet, riding his bike until he finally got home, extremely relieved.
Now, there was only one person he needed to talk to.
Mike didn’t get that much sleep that night either, thinking about 350 different ways to tell Will the obvious. I love you was too intense, I like you couldn’t describe what he felt, you’re my best friend but I wish you were more sounded painfully weird in his ears.
So, when he sees Will before class that day, he says the only reasonable thing he can think of:
“Why Pamela Crimson?”
Will shut his locker door with a bang. Mike was staring at him with dark bags under his eyes, like he hadn’t slept for days. His eyes were puffy and red, like he had been crying. Will frowned and stared at him with nothing but fear and concern.
“Mike? What happened…”
But Michael Wheeler was having none of that ‘I-care-for-you-but-only-as-a-friend’ bullshit. He wanted to take that burden out of his chest. He wanted to shout for all the gods and monsters that he was in love with Will Byers and fuck society. He wanted to kiss him in the mouth and in the cheek, and hold his hand, and cuddle in rainy days. He wanted to tell the truth and know the truth. It was now or never.
So he grabbed Will’s hand and easily pulled him to the janitor’s room, empty and full of cleaning equipments.
“What the hell, Wheeler?” he sounded angry, but his eyes told him otherwise. It had been over a month since Mike had found that doodle in Will’s notebook, and he had been quite the observer. Will always seemed to blush when Mike was next to him, and blush even deeply when he complimented him. He grabbed his hand when he was scared and looked out for him when he wanted to talk. He always jumped into his bike when the boys offered him a ride home, and always hugged him when they watched a horror movie. Sometimes he caught Will staring and blushing when he noticed, and he often got a little distracted or sad when he talked about Eleven.
If Mike wasn’t the one for Will, who was it, then?
“I need answers. Answers for questions I’ve been asking myself for over a month” Mike didn’t want to sound as pissed as he did, but the truth is that he was kind of pissed. He had confessed to El yesterday, and he hadn’t been able to sleep at all, and he always got grumpy when he didn’t sleep.
“Yeah, you’ve acting weird for the past month.” Will murmured, touching his wrists with a frown. Mike wondered if he had hurt him, and his expression softened.
“Will, why Pamela Crimson?” he asked slowly, like he already knew the answer and was sad even before listening to it. Will let out an angry sigh.
“Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about!” he answered, pissed. “I don’t even talk to Pamela Crimson! Nobody in our party talks with Pamela Crimson!”
Mike raised one eyebrow.
“Then why her name was written in your notebook?” he asked abruptly, as if those words where a bomb that just exploded.
“What?” Will seemed more confused than ever.
“Your notebook, your history notebook! There was a drawing of her, and above it, I (heart) Pamela Crimson. I mean, really? Don’t you have another notebook for that?”
If his crush was indeed true, Will would have been offended. Instead, he just laughed.
“Why are you laughing?” But Mike was offended.
“Dude… It’s just… God!” Will laughed some more, and had to catch up his breath so he would be able to talk. “That was Dustin!”
Mike felt like someone had just punched him in the chest.
“W-What?” he stuttered, skeptical.
“It was Dustin.” Will had finally stopped laughing, looking at him with a funny kind of frown in his pretty face. “Dustin sits between me and Pamela on history class. Sometimes she sits in the back of the room, but anyways. One day, he didn’t want to pay attention, so he just grabbed a pencil and wrote that in my notebook. I thought about complaining, but I decided to draw instead. Sometimes history is really boring indeed.” He justified, looking straight into Mike’s confused, blushing face.
“So… You don’t like her?” he questioned, still somewhat afraid he would start laughing again and say ‘obviously I like her, everybody loves Pamela Crimson’.
“Nope” Will shook his head, and Mike never saw him so certain. He let out a contented sigh, feeling like a huge weight had been took off his shoulders.
“And… And… Do you like girls?” he asked again, a little more excited.
Will blushed mercilessly.
“What kind of question is that?!”
“Friends don’t lie, just say it.”
“Mike, what is wrong with you…”
“No! Okay? No!” he yelled, irritated. His face was flushed with all different colors of red, and if Mike knew how to draw, he would register his pretty embarrassed face forever. “Why… Why are you being such a jerk, Mike? What did I do?” his voice cracked and Mike could see a few tears threatening to spill out of his hazelnut eyes.
He felt like he was seeing Will for the first time.
And he was so beautiful.
“You have no idea what you did to me” his own voice cracked. “what you do to me…”
And Mike kissed him. Kissed him like his life depended on it, because at that point he felt like it did. His lips were so soft and plump, naturally reddish, and he wondered how he had survived so long without kissing it. His face was hot and slightly wet from tears he just spilled when they kissed, smooth and pleasant to his fingers. Will didn’t react for seconds, but then gave up to the kiss, and they didn’t let go of each other for what felt like the greatest eternity.
When they broke apart, flushed and smiling shyly like two dorks, Will was the first one to say anything:
“What about El?”
and smiled brightly. He realized he didn’t hate Pamela Crimson that much anymore.
“We broke up. I think she likes girls.”