Sequel: Paralians
Status: Completed.

The Redemption of Peter Wentz

Decrescendo, Fine

Pete stares for a long moment at the headstone. He thinks, if he wished hard enough, that Patrick would be waiting in his study for them to get back, like nothing ever happened. Brendon would be sleeping soundly without having to fare for Pete’s nightmares. Andy would still be in college working toward his master’s degree, and Joe would be running his guitar shop like he wanted. Pete, well…Pete wouldn’t be this way. He’d be warm, comforting. Not this.

They’d burned what remains they’d found of Beckett that evening. Brendon’s skin still fought to heal, and Pete followed them out the front door, limping with the lighter and can of kerosene. He felt nothing, not even Brendon pulling at his mind as they watched the flames scorch the clothes and rise higher, hotter, and brighter into the air. Brendon had retreated early on while Pete stayed behind until dawn, burning a hole in the ashes with his eyes.

The next day, they buried Patrick by the lake in a private plot. Brendon insisted that he do it out of respect, but Pete could feel the intense guilt that fell off of him like rain. They now watch the newly dug grave in the snow in silence. Pete doesn’t take his eyes off of the epitaph written crudely into the stone with his fingernail, and the broken pair of glasses sitting snugly in the dirt.

He can feel Brendon’s intentions before he can hear him through the snow. Pete stands there in his a shirt, maroon, that smells like both of them intertwined, blood up and down his arms and dripping from his chin. Pete’s eyes are dilated from the adrenaline and pure bloodlust, and he’s not ashamed to hide it anymore. Brendon gently takes Pete’s hand and wippes away the blood from his palm.

Carden didn’t stand a chance.

“Where will we go?” Pete asked absently. His eyes slip shut when Brendon begins drawing patterns along the creases, and the wind begins to pick up again.

“To the sea. Paralians, remember?” Pete nods. He can’t forget a lifeline like that. “Tell me, do you feel satisfied now that they’re gone, at your hands?” Brendon’s tone is sharp, but curious all the same.

“I don’t feel anything.” Pete responds. He’s been numb since Chislett burst into ashes against the wall, the last of them.

Liar.” Brendon hisses. There’s an accent beneath it that doesn’t belong to him. Pete looks at him quickly with searching eyes, but Brendon’s already caught his fault. He sucks in a breath and hisses, clutching the side of his head where his brain is being squeezed into a small point. A small trail of blood drips from his nose, but he wipes it away with the back of his hand before Pete can say anything. “I’m sorry. It comes and goes.” he explains.

Yes, traces of him still linger. The pull had been that strong on delicate, little Brendon, but the years have aged him enough. He’ll keep himself in control, and if that fails, Pete will be there.

Brendon tugs on the sleeve of his winter coat to hide the blood that Pete’s already seen.

“Is everything gone? Have Andy and Joe moved on?” Pete asks.

“Yes. I saw them off, sold the furniture.” Brendon assures. Joe and Andy gave him weary looks because they knew, just knew, Brendon will never be the same. He’s tainted and damaged, not entirely stable. But this is the end. They’re at peace. There is a balance.

“We’re coming back.” Pete says it like a promise. “Every year, same time, same place.”

The wind is whipping fast now, making their hair blow wildly around their faces. Brendon laces their fingers and makes a pull at Pete’s hands for him to follow. “I go where you go.”
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