Three Cheers for Tragic Ends

Chapter Seven

August 19th, 1997

“D’ya wun gotuf owwit ‘e?”

“What?” The younger boy looked up, bemused expression on his face, half hidden by a small teacup. Gerard rolled his eyes and put his own cup down, and said again, “Do you want to go into town with me?”

“Okay, I swear to God that’s not what you just said, some weird Vulcan language or something or other…” Mikey set his cup down next to Gerard’s, and began walking to the stairs. “Uh, yeah. Just lemme grab my coat.”

And Gerard sighed, and took the two nearly-empty teacups and discarded their remains in the sink, and grabbed his keys off the counter and stopped in front of the stairs, and shouted, “While you’re at it, grab my wallet. It’s in the top drawer of my… oh, whatever.”

“Sorry?” Mikey popped his head around the corner of the hallway and raised a skeptical eyebrow. “Your what?”

The artist blinked at him. “Never mind, I said,” he clarified. “I remembered it’s still in the car from last time.”

“Oh. Well, let me get my coat then…”

“What were you just doing?” the noirette cried. He rubbed at his eyes and said, “Sorry, my patience is just a bit thin today. I just want out of this god damned house…” He leaned against the stair banister and closed his eyes, and counted out 7/11 breathing until he heard his brother descend softly down the stairs.

The artist snapped open his eyes when he felt a hand on his shoulder, and Mikey asked, “Hey, you okay?”

“I’m fine; like I said, I just need out of the house. I’ll even buy you shit again, just– I wanna be away, but not alone… does that make any sense?” Gerard sighed again, “I’m sorry. Whatever.”

“Something’s really stressing you out, Gee,” the blonde boy worried.

“Yeah, I know. Can we just… go?” Before his brother could respond, the artist had made his way to the door, and he was struggling to get it open. “Jesus Christ, I’m fucking trapped in here.” He rolled his eyes again, huffed, and slammed his fist against the old wood of the door. “Let me out of this god damned old house!”

Mikey furrowed his brow and rushed himself to his brother, where he pulled his arm down from threatening height and said, “Stressed, Gee.”

“Where’s the Xan–”

“No!” At that, Mikey hip-checked his brother out of the way, opening the door with ease. “Don’t you dare, Gerard. You’re just stressed; we’ll get through this. Look, door’s open, okay?” At this, he ushered his brother out the door.

“No need to push,” the older boy grumbled; and he sent an upset glare to the old house. Mikey sighed; and shut the door behind him, and looked up to the artist and said, “Talk to me.”

“I’ll tell you in the car, okay?” The lie burned on Gerard’s tongue, and on his lips like venom and he pushed at the bridge of his nose in frustration. “Jesus, beat me please.”

“So, what’s up?” The second Gerard’s car had left the driveway, Mikey was on his case and practically in his lap, trying to get the older boy to spill.

“You’re not helping!” the artist cried, and shoved his brother back into the passenger seat. “I’m just pissy. I need a drink.”

“You want a smoke?” Mikey asked, voice anxious as he tried to divert his brother’s attention just slightly. “I have smokes…” and the younger boy pulled from his coat pocket a half-full carton of Marlboros.

“Oh, good. Give me the whole pack,” the artist whined, and took the box from Mikey before the younger boy could even blink. “Oh, Jesus…”

“Please don’t chain-smoke all of ‘em,” the blonde boy begged; but Gerard was already frantically lighting up the cherry of the cigarette that had ended up somehow in his mouth.

“Do you think I could do two at a time?” the artist questioned. His eyes were blown wide when he looked at his brother, and he was twitching in his seat.

Mikey wanted to say about ten different things at the same time, starting with, “Watch the fucking road,” and, “Calm the fuck down,” but he settled on, “What, are you on crack?”

Gerard whimpered loudly and let his head fall back onto the seat with a thud. “I wish.” He inhaled deeply around the cigarette and pulled it out, blowing out a large cloud of smoke. He immediately moved to take another puff, and Mikey cried, “Jesus, not so fast!”

“I’m trying,” the artist moaned. His fingers were drumming frantically on the steering wheel and he looked about ready to jump out of his skin.

“Why are you so fucking antsy?” Mikey cried, and then, finally, “Watch the road, dumbass!” because Gerard was watching anywhere but the road, and if he kept that up they would crash.

“I miss sex,” the older boy whined finally, and took another huge puff off his cigarette. Mikey narrowed his eyes at him.

“Is that really the reason?” he cried, appalled. Gerard groaned out a, “No.”

“It’s because… oh, Jesus fuck,” and then, “Fuck,” about ten more times; and another three heavy puffs off his cigarette before he slammed on the breaks suddenly, and cried, “Fuck!” one more time. And then seven.

“What in the Hell is up with you?” Mikey shrieked, distress heavy in his voice. “Are you trying to kill us both?”

“Give me another cigarette,” the older boy said. His voice was unnervingly steady for his jittery state. Mikey looked at him in high alarm.

“Um, no?”

“Mikey, give me another fucking cigarette I swear to God–” but he cut himself off, cried, “I’ll do it my fucking self,” and slid another Marlboro from the pack. He put it in his mouth, replacing the half-smoked one, which he put out on the dashboard; and his hands were shaking violently as he lit the cigarette.

“You are scaring me to fucking death, Gerard, what the fuck!” But Gerard still ignored his younger brother; and slammed himself against the back of the car seat and threw his legs up on the steering wheel; and took long, steady puffs with second-long breaks off the Marlboro between his crooked lips.

“I kissed him,” Gerard finally said, and then moaned, really loudly, “Jesus, I kissed him.”

“Who the fuck are you talking about?” The blonde boy looked scared to death and fed up to here with the artist. Gerard rolled his eyes and took another puff of his cigarette.

“Frank,” he spat. “Duh.”

“Gerard, for fuck’s sake there is no Frank–”

“Except there is- and I kissed him, okay? I did and it was great and fuck, Mikes, fuck because I think I might be in love with him, oh God..” and the older boy trailed off, and let out a choked-back sob, and said, “God.” And he put out his cigarette on the dashboard again, and threw it somewhere in the backseat and said, “Oh, God, Mikes. I fucking love him.”

“Um, problem?” the younger boy asked, one eyebrow raised skeptically.

“Hinderances,” the older boy cried.



Mikey sighed, and slumped back into the passenger seat. “Oh, fucking Hell.”

“Are you sure you’re fine now– Gerard, what the fuck are you doing?”

The older boy’s expression was akin to a child with their hand in the cookie jar; and he was crouched down, hand hovering frozen over the head of a very scraggly-looking cat. “Um, petting?”

“You fuck, you’re allergic!” Gerard pouted, and lowered his hand to the cat. “Don’t you fucking dare–”

“But I want to!” and with that, the older boy clutched the cat to his chest, buried his face in the mangy fur, and let out a very loud sneeze.

Of course this loud disruption scared the cat to its wits, and it hissed loudly, batting a paw at Gerard’s face and cutting a heavy, red line down over his eye. The artist cried, “Fucking ow!”, sneezed again, and dropped the cat; which ran away immediately.

“You absolute fucking idiot!” Mikey cried, and dropped down on his knees next to his brother. “Why the fuck would you do that?”

Gerard was pressing a hand to his steadily bleeding eye and cheek, and he sniffed, loudly, and sneezed again. “I’m sorry,” he pouted, and then coughed.

“You fucker, you dumb fucker.” The younger boy fretted at him, grabbing his wrist and pulling his hand away. “Let me see, let me– fuck, Gerard, let me help you, you idiot!” Gerard shook his head frantically, and let his legs bend out underneath him, falling to his ass on the concrete.

“I hate myself,” he cried, and buried his face in his knees; and sneezed again. Mikey sighed, exasperatedly, and rolled his eyes.

“Let me see your eye, please?” Gerard shook his head again. “Please? I swear, dealing with you– it’s like a fucking child.”

Gerard looked up at his brother, cut eye squinted shut, the other watery and red. He sneezed again.

“Gesundheit,” Mikey drawled, and then, “Open up,” and he prodded lightly at Gerard’s cheek. He wiped the blood from his finger onto his pants, which Gerard cried out in protest to, because, “I just bought those for you, idiot!”

“Shit, this is bad, Gee,” the blonde crooned worriedly, and took the hem of his shirt and began wiping the blood away. Gerard sneezed again, and Mikey cried, “Watch it! I almost jabbed you again.”

“I can’t help it,” the artist whined.

“You could have. Oh, Jesus, today just isn’t your day, is it?”

“No,” Gerard pouted. “Mikey, I feel shitty.”

“I know, fratello, I know… C’mon, come up, okay? It’s still bleeding, I need to get you to a bathroom…”

“How bad is it?” the artist asked.

“How bad does it hurt?”

“Like a lot of fucking knives in my eye,” the noirette replied.

“That’s how bad it is,” Mikey said back.

“Yay,” the artist said sarcastically.

“C’mon, though,” the younger boy pleaded, and he stood up, and pulled Gerard up with him. The older boy sneezed again, twice in succession. “Let’s go get you cleaned up.”

“Ah, Jeez… don’t– stop!” Mikey sighed, and put his arms down, sighing heavily. “Gerard, please stay still…”

The artist was currently occupying himself poking at the reddened, still-bloody scratch that trailed from slightly above his right eyebrow to barely underneath his cheekbone. “I look like a psychopath.”

“You are a psychopath. You know you’re allergic…” To further prove the younger boy’s point, Gerard’s nose began to run a bit. He sniffed, and put his hand down, turning back to face his brother. “You’re absolutely ridiculous.” And Mikey continued to wipe at the cut until it was all the way –or nearly all the way– washed of any blood. Gerard sniffed again, scrunching his face up, and let out a whimper. The cut began to bleed again.

“Dammit, am I gonna have to take you to a hospital?” The blonde boy gripped the artist’s chin, holding his face in place, and brought the wet tissue down across the scratch one last time, before he leaned in and kissed his brother softly on the nose.

“You’re babying me,” Gerard whined, and rolled his eyes. Mikey smirked.

“You’re being one.” He then brushed his finger over the cut and, when it didn’t start bleeding again, threw the tissue into the trash bin below the sink. “C’mon, big baby.”

“Thanks for letting us use your restroom,” Mikey called flirtatiously to the young boy behind the coffee counter– Brendon, the one from before. The boy blushed then, and said, “Oh, no problem. He– he looked like he needed it.”

“Well, we’re all cleaned up now,” the blonde spoke back, voice still holding the same air of promiscuity from before. Brendon blushed as Mikey made his way over to the counter, draping his arms over it and leaning so that his face was aligned with the younger boy’s. “Do you think we could get two mochas to go?”

“O-of course,” Brendon stuttered in reply. His face only grew darker in crimson color.

“Mikey,” Gerard warned from behind his younger brother. Mikey shrugged half a shoulder at him, and winked.

“So, what did you say your name was again?” Brendon muttered from somewhat under the counter. Mikey looked down at him, cheek sitting in one hand like a daydreaming teenage girl.

“Michael,” he purred, “but you can call me Mikey.”

“Well, of course I remember that…” Gerard made a mental note to hit his brother upside the head later, when they were alone. The poor kid was a beet by now. “I meant your last name.”

“Oh,” Mikey said softly. “Ah, it’s Way.”

At this, Brendon shot up directly, almost spilling the two coffees in the process. He set them down in front of Mikey carefully, and to the blonde boy, said, “Wait. Way? Like Elena's grandkids, the one who owns the haunted house down in the Grove?”

“Haunted?” Gerard said, surprised, but Brendon ignored him, continuing to ramble.

“Well, I mean. Pete knows way more about it than I do, but yeah. I guess like, a hundred-year-old ghost haunts that place, or something.”

“Great,” Gerard commented. Again, he was ignored. Mikey’s eyes grew wide with fake interest, and he leaned over the counter more.

“Do you think you could tell me more about this ghost?” Gerard almost threw up at the tone of his brother’s voice. At the least his eyes rolled all the way back into his head. He needed to sit down if he was gonna deal with anymore of this.

The artist looked over to the Brendon kid, the one who looked like he had just creamed his pants. Gerard sighed; Mikey was a fucking jerk.

“Well, I really don’t know…”

“Are you sure?” Mikey teased. “Do you think you could get your friend to tell you more, and then come back and tell me?” Brendon nodded with speed so lighting-fast that Gerard practically missed it; and he hadn’t blinked. “Okay, well you go talk to him, then you come back and I’ll be waiting, okay?” Brendon lightning-nodded again.

Mikey winked after him and grabbed the two cups of coffee, and sat down at a table. Gerard quickly followed.

“You’re an absolute ass,” he let out, once he’d downed about half of his coffee. Mikey shrugged.

“Look, we’re getting dirt on our house. That’s pretty cool.” And he cracked his knuckles like it was so easy, like he made fourteen-year-old boys cream their pants and spill out their hearts every day.

“You’re pretty fucking gross.”

“You sound stuffed up, still.” Mikey contemplated his brother for a moment, before sighing and saying, “Yeah, I know. I’m pretty fucking gross. But it’s not like there’s anything else to do out here in piss-hole bum-fuck nowhere.”

“So you have to take advantage of a prepubescent boy? Gross, Mikes. Gross.”

“Well, when you put it that way…” But the young counter worker was already scampering back to the table, and Mikey immediately slid over, letting him room to sit down. Gerard wouldn’t put it past his brother to end up patting his lap either.

“Lord, help us all…” Gerard muttered to himself, as Mikey held his arms out to the younger boy. He wrapped them around Brendon’s neck and smiled, teasingly. The artist was surprised the youngest hadn’t passed out already.

“So, what did your friend say about my house, huh?” Mikey hummed. Brendon stuttered out a few inhuman noises, and Mikey smirked slightly; and ran a hand up the boy’s arm, and said, “It’s okay, don’t be nervous.”

Gerard took it upon himself to write on the napkin next to him, “You are actually going to Hell and watch me send you there,” passing it to his brother. The blonde boy read it and shrugged again.

“Well, Pete says that a hundred years ago, about exactly… there was a boy. I guess he was the definition of tall, dark, and handsome… His name was Frank.”

At this, Gerard’s head snapped up. He could deal with his brother being a pervert on an innocent bystander to hear this.

“Yeah?” Mikey said, feigning interest. He let his hand fall from the boy’s arm to his chest, where he dragged it down teasingly. “Any more to this story?”

Okay, maybe Gerard could use super-hearing to listen to this story, but not actually look.

“Well, he lived in your house, right? And back then, people were pretty hard about anything that wasn’t straight out of the Catholic Book of Life, I guess…” Mikey nodded, and he scooted Brendon forward so that the younger boy was sitting in his lap. Gerard gagged.

“Yeah, I heard people were pretty hard-assed about in the 1800s,” the blonde boy crooned. Brendon blushed; Gerard was seconds away from jabbing a fork through his eye.

“Well this boy was strange, right?” Gerard made a mental tick in his head. “And promiscuous.” Another mental tick. “And he had a boyfriend, cute little slut one, that’s what Pete says.” Yet another mental tick. “Well, boys weren’t supposed to like boys back then… I guess Frank had done enough bad that when the pastor finally caught them out grinding on each other by the church… Well, he was convinced that Frank was possessed.

“The kid used to be all cute, sweet little ladies’ man when he was younger; grew up in good studies, he was gonna be a doctor one day, that’s what Pete says. But one day, he just changed– that’s why Harmse was convinced he was the Devil’s son.”

“All of this is very interesting, sweetie, but can we get to the climax of this story, already?” Gerard really did gag that time. If he had to hear his brother say ‘climax’ once more, he would shoot himself.

“Sorry.” Brendon blushed again, and Mikey rubbed his hand up his chest and said, “It’s okay, keep going.”

“Well, long story short… sorry… He was hung to death in the attic. I guess his spirit has been trapped there ever since?”

“Oh, wow,” Mikey said.

Gerard felt like throwing up- but now, for entirely different reasons. He swallowed, and squeezed his eyes shut. It had to be just a coincidence. “What was his last name?”

“Huh?” Brendon asked, snapped out of the haze of Mikey’s hands running over the top half of him. “What, sorry?”

“His last name, does your friend know? What his last name was?”

“Oh.” Brendon appeared to be thinking for a moment, before he said, “Oh. It was Iero.”

“Iero?” Gerard repeated to himself; and suddenly, he was having flashbacks of Frank. Frank in the attic, always there one second and gone the next; Frank talking about his boyfriend, Frank talking about how everything had ‘been a while’…

~“God, I love that laugh,” he grinned. “Say it again though. No, say my last name.”

“I don’t know your last name,” the noirette pointed out.


“Mikey, we have to go.” Gerard had one hand to his mouth, as if he were going to be physically sick without it there as barrier. Mikey looked up, startled.

“Oh, yeah. Okay, um…” and he turned back to Brendon, and ran his hand up the kid’s chest once more, to his cheek, which he cupped, and then said, “Thanks for all that.” And he leaned in, and brushed their noses together, and pressed their lips together…

“Mikey, now!” The blonde boy snapped out of his haze, and looked down, to where Brendon was still sitting stilled in his lap, their lips pressed together. He pulled away quickly, and said to a very startled Brendon, “Sorry, duty calls!”, ushering the boy out of the seat, mortified expression on his face.

“Oh my God,” Mikey muttered, as he and Gerard rushed their way out of the coffee shop. “Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God… I kissed a boy, I kissed a boy, oh my God…”

“Well, to be fair, where did you think that was going?” The artist sighed. Mikey whimpered.

“I fucked, Gerard, okay? Fuck, fuck, oh my God I kissed a boy, oh my God I kissed a boy, oh my God…”

“Look, that’s the least of our problems right now, kid,” Gerard said, as he was starting up the car. Mikey looked at him, stupefied.

“Least of our problems–!”

“Your boy love can be dealt with later, okay?” Mikey narrowed his eyes at the older boy.

“Excuse me, you did not just go through what I did! God, he was sitting in my lap all hot and bothered and hot, and I kissed him, oh I kissed him,” the boy moaned loudly, trailing off, “Oh, boys…”

“Mikey, Jesus Christ–”

“Gerard, I think I like boys.”


“Oh, God, oh my God, I kissed a boy, I like boys, Jesus…”

“Literally, you shit!” And Gerard slammed on the brakes, and turned to his brother, who had been once again snapped out of his haze of whatever-Gerard-didn’t-really-care-to-know. “Look, I’m glad your discovering yourself in my fucking car, cool for you, gross a bit, but we have bigger problems.” Stress on the word ‘bigger’. “Look…” he said, and sighed.

“I think we have a ghost.”