Slimesunday is a moniker that is not supposed to make any sense or have some profound hidden meaning behind it. Its a random incidental title I gave myself in late 2014 while watching an old Eminem interview.
The goal from day one has always been to create something; To occupy a blank page with some idea before I fall asleep. If that day I’ve created nothing, then I won’t fall asleep because there is this overwhelming feeling of dissatisfaction. If there is something there, I wake up the next day ready to repeat the cycle. I have created a situation for myself in which the only way to sleep is to create something before the day ends. It doesn’t make sense but it’s how I’ve come to operate on a daily basis. It’s more or less an obsession that has taken over my life but in many ways this obsession does not deserve any negative connotation.
I’m watching this old interview from when Star Trek 2009 came out and it’s Zach and Chris talking about how Karl somehow got ahold of a tiny Enterprise ship toy and he would play with it and like make videos of it and it’s just fuckin g:
Z: He brought it with us for the rest of the trip and you’d be on the plane sleeping-
C: -and you’d just hear:
Z: And Karl would be taking a video of the Starship Enterprise like flying across your face-
C: But dead serious! The man is dead- the man is 36 years old!
Z: And he was just really - he was just really into it.
Z: And then he broke it - it broke in Dubai, as we were on our way to Kuwait… and then it was all… downhill from there.
C: I think someone prevented him from shooting it in some part of the airport. He… he was asked to put it away which had to be humiliating,
C: “Sir please, could you please-”
Z: “Could you please put away your toy spaceship?”
Levi watched as Jean draped his arm around Eren’s shoulders and said something into his ear with a wide grin. Eren laughed and poked his tongue out, and Jean pulled a face and pretended to recoil.
But they stayed close, those two.
Levi sort of thought they would have mentioned it if they were actually together, but with the way they acted sometimes he honestly wasn’t sure. It wasn’t really his business, he supposed, only that it was; Eren had told him flat out that he was good at shutting down their arguments, and doing that for a couple seemed weird and inappropriate.
Levi was ushered forward next, to be included in the photograph. The label still wasn’t sure how to ‘massage him into the band’s core brand’ as one of the bright, interchangeable young PR people had put it and Levi wished he didn’t even have to try. Some bullshit never changed.
They wanted him to watch all the band’s old interviews, and Levi put on a dutiful look and agreed, but secretly it wasn’t such a hardship.
They were both gorgeous, those two; fresh faced and charismatic, and Levi watched them joke and giggle and prod each other, squirming across a variety of TV talk show couches, along with their ex-bandmate Reiner. They’d always been all over each other, apparently, and Levi wondered why the PR people hadn’t told them to put a stop to it. Some of their comments were downright suggestive.
Levi didn’t need the mental images of the lean, leggy young men wrapped around each other like that, their stories of sharing hotel rooms and the back of a van working all too vividly on his imagination.
He didn’t know what to make of this whole situation sometimes; no one gets a second chance like that, a rediscovery and the opportunity to return to the stage after all those years. That alone seemed too much to expect, and here he was with two frankly beautiful young men who apparently saw in him nothing but good things. Even after they found out about his stage fright they seemed to think it was just something to manage rather than a deal-breaker.
He should be more grateful, and stop imagining them naked at the very least.
“At least you’ve done all this before,” Jean said when the shoot was over and they were heading back in the car. “It was a hell of a learning curve for us.”
“Mm.” Levi didn’t feel like discussing it; he’d felt like a third wheel for most of the time, and he doubted no amount of massaging the message was going to change that. How could it? He was a decade older than they were, and they’d almost literally found him in the trash.
He could almost sense them looking at each other, trying to work out why he was in a bad mood. Did they really know him so well so fast? Or maybe it wasn’t him at all, and they were silently communicating about more personal things.
“We should work on our narrative,” Eren said, when they’d retreated back to the boys’ apartment. Levi had sort of wanted to leave, but they had work to do. “They’re gonna keep bugging us until we have something.” He frowned. “We need something.”
Levi watched Eren return from the fridge and choose a seat across from Jean, flopping into it and somehow managing not to spill his drink. They always pulled apart when he was with them, and it was starting to bug him a little. He wasn’t prejudiced or anything.
“You don’t have to do that, you know,” he said.
“Do what?” Eren asked.
“Act distant with each other when I’m here. I’m not going to be bothered,” he lied slightly. It didn’t bug him for the obvious reasons at least.
“We’re not?” Jean looked puzzled.
Levi rolled his eyes. “You were practically sitting in his lap earlier.”
“Oh that!” Eren laughed, a little awkwardly. “It’s for the cameras, you know.”
“The fans love it,” Jean explained. “The idea that we might be fucking in private. They get really invested. So,” he shrugged. “We play up to it a bit.”
“Don’t worry, Levi, we won’t make you do it,” Eren assured him.
“Too old?” Levi suggested wryly.
“No. I mean, you wouldn’t like it, right?”
He could feel their eyes on him, and he resisted the urge to squirm in his chair. He wished desperately he’d never raised the topic to start with.
“I wouldn’t really mind,” he said eventually. “I mean, if they like it.”
“Well that’s great!” Eren said, with more enthusiasm than Levi thought was necessary. “We know our narrative now, don’t we?”
Levi got the distinct impression they were communicating via eye contact again.
“And he was so good!” Jean declared, beaming at the host. “We were like, we have to get this guy to play with us.”
“And then we got him out of those overalls,” Eren said, leaning against Levi on the other side. “And look at this!” He grabbed Levi’s bicep and Levi flexed good-naturedly as the crowd oohed.
“Oh my God, those arms,” the host said, pulling a shocked and delighted face for the camera. “Can I touch them?” she asked.
And Levi, firmly wedged between his bandmates, Jean’s thigh pressed against his own and Eren’s breath tickling his ear, wasn’t sure if he was in heaven or hell, but he wouldn’t have traded it for anything.