The Short One

The older Way woke up with a pounding headache in surroundings he didn’t recognize. He sat up and hunched forward, rubbing his eyes. Looking around, he concluded that he was in a tour bus, but never being in one for more than a few minutes, he couldn’t be sure. “Where am I?” He thought aloud. To his surprise, Branden Steineckert appeared into the room where he was sitting, toothbrush in hand.

“You’re in our tour bus. You passed out last night and McCrackhead brought you here instead of leaving you with the afro man. He said that he was going to kick your ass, regardless of whether you were out cold or not. So McCrackhead and Jeph carried you in here and you got to sleep in my bunk. Which gratefully you didn’t puke on. Thanks, man!” Steineckert exclaimed, and disappeared again.

Above him, Gerard heard a groan and a hand dropped into sight. He resisted hitting it and slowly got out of the bunk, room spinning as he stood.

The hand belonged to Bert, or McCrackhead. He groaned again and opened his eyes, blinking against the dim light issuing from a blind-covered window. “What time is it?”

Gerard pulled out his cell phone, seeing that he had several missed calls from Ray and Frank, “2:53,” he read off and looked at Bert, now staring at him with bloodshot blue eyes. “I should go find my tour van…Thanks for bringing me here, though. I really appreciate it.” He grasped Bert’s hand quickly in a sign of thanks. Bert didn’t reply but continued to stare at Gerard intensely, as if trying to read his mind.

A little freaked out by the stare, Gerard left the bunking area without another word and tried to open the bus door.

“I wouldn’t do that, if I were you. The bus is moving. Can’t you tell?” Steineckert asked, standing with his arms crossed in front of him. Gerard must’ve looked confused because Steineckert rolled his eyes and said, “We’re going to the first gig. We’ll be there in, like, another hour.”

“Ah,” Gerard said and went to sit on the couch. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw Steineckert almost glaring at him and Bert stumbling out of his bunk, tripping in the bathroom and letting out a rude word.

“Who’s driving?” asked Gerard randomly.

“Brian Schechter. He didn’t drink too much last night and was able to take the wheel from me for a couple hours. Why?”

“Just wondering,” Gerard twiddled his thumbs, “You wouldn’t happen to have an aspirin, would you?”

“Yeah. I’ll get it for you,” Steineckert said after a pause. Gerard was left sitting on the couch, still twiddling his thumbs and staring at the wall.

“Hey, you’re one of the Ways’, right?” said Quinn, coming into the room in only his boxers and a raggedy, white tank top.

Gerard hesitated before answering, a little bothered by Quinn’s normal voice volume, “What’s it to you?”

Quinn rolled his eyes, “No need to get defensive. I was just wondering if you were.” Gerard nodded and Quinn continued, “You have to be Gerard then. Damn, it was insane what you did to the other kid! Mickey, right? You had the whole rest of the camp fucking shaking in their panties. Will you give me a high-five? PSYCHE! Heh heh, alright, got to go. Here’s your aspirin. Thanks for that, Steineckert. Bye!”

Clutching the aspirin, Gerard stared after Quinn as he disappeared into the now empty bathroom. Bert was headed towards him, grinning almost maliciously at the aspirin in his hand.

“Rough night?”

“Uh, sure. I kind of don’t remember past my… fifth…cup of…drink?” Gerard said. His head hurt like a motherfucker and he couldn’t concentrate well. The room spun dangerously, whirling together into one swirl of color.

“Around there,” Bert said, tilting his head as Gerard got steadily greener. “Your boyfriend stopped by right after you passed out. He wanted to take you back to your guys’ van, but he was pretty pissed.”

His mind cleared at the mention of boyfriend. “Boyfriend?” Gerard echoed, wracking his brain for any memory of mentioning Mikey to Bert.

The younger rolled his eyes. Trying to play dumb, huh? “Yeah, you said that one guy in your band was your boyfriend.” Smoke you out, motherfucker.

Gerard stalled, raising the glass up to inspect the water through the light. He glanced at Bert to see that he was still looking at him intently. “Oh, you mean… Frank?”

Bert stared at Gerard, blinked, once…twice and grinned, “I guess. Is he the short one?”

Relief filled him, glad that Bert had bought the story so easily. There was no telling what he did or said when he was drunk… “That’s the one,” he nodded. The nodding stirred his head, making everything fuzzy again and for his stomach to lurch uncomfortably. He got up before Bert could say anything else and dove into the bathroom, unleashing the sick bile into the toilet bowl.

Quinn growled in distaste and stepped around him, leaving the faucet on. The water splashed around in the sink, sounding horribly like when the vomit, now staring back at Gerard from the bowl, made contact with the toilet. He wiped his mouth with the back of his hand before retching into the toilet. Bert winced sympathetically in the other room while Quinn annoyed Steineckert.

Gerard finally emerged from the bathroom, looking much less green but just as shitty. “Rough night,” he agreed.


Gerard contorted his face into disbelief when he saw Mikey sitting on top of the tour van, his entire arm surrounded by plaster. Mikey looked solemnly back at him, hiding this desire to jump off the roof of the van and pummel his older brother into the ground.

“Mikes…?” He called hesitantly, aware of Bert and Jepha standing not too far away from them. “Mikey, please come down.”

“Fuck you, Gerard.”

“Mikey, come on, please!”


Angry now, Gerard jumped on the hood of the van and scrambled on the roof so he was level with Mikey. “You wouldn’t believe me if I apologized, right?”

Mikey threw him a scathing look and startled to clamber off the van, slipping and hitting his arm as he did. A curse escaped his lips and he glared at Gerard over his shoulder, daring him to make a remark. The latter was already on the pavement, though, holding Mikey’s uninjured arm and assisting him. When he realized that, Mikey tore his arm away from his brother’s and started to walk away, leaving Gerard standing there, almost…hurt.

“Hey Gerard, here comes your boyfriend,” Bert called out, watching Mikey for a reaction. Even though he believed Gerard when he said that he was dating Frank, the sound of Gerard voice the previous night when he spoke of Mikey remained embedded in his memory. It was a combination of admiration and deepest utmost love. That kind of shit isn’t hard to fake. Bert knew that. He knew that he was a fake.

The younger Way indeed did respond curiously, whirling around to see who Bert was talking about, afraid for a split second that Bert somehow knew. But his fear cooled down to anger when he saw that Bert was looking at Frank, now walking towards them, Ray in tow.

Despite his issue with Gerard, Mikey went up behind him and muttered, “What is he talking about?”

“I thought you hated me.”

“I do, I just want to know what the hell McCracken is talking about.”

“Why do you care? You hate me for breaking your arm, right?”

“And for being a total bitch to me,” Mikey snapped, raising his voice. Bert was watching them closely, putting the puzzle together in his head.

“Hey, Gee. Mikey,” Frank nodded at the Ways and then greeted Bert. His eyes paused on Jeph for a minute more than the others, his happy smile morphing into one of shyness.

Gerard felt Bert’s eyes on him, no doubt expecting him to greet his boyfriend in the boyfriend-ly manor that is customary. And not to mention, it seemed as if Jeph was undressing Frank with his eyes. Boyfriends don’t let other guys do that, right? And unless Gerard wanted to admit to his band and most likely the rest of the bands on the TOC tour that he was gay and dating his younger brother, something boyfriend-ly had to be done.

So he stepped forward, wrapped his arm around Frank’s waist and planted a wet kiss on his cheek, “Hey, baby,” he said sweetly. Frank didn’t even try to pull away, too confused to even realize what was going on.

“You guys are dating?” Jeph asked, hiding his disappointment badly.

“N-,” Frank began, seemingly realizing what the hell was happening.

But he was cut off by Gerard, “Yeah.”

“We are?” The shortest one there asked, eyes wide. He felt his heart flutter a little as he looked into Gerard’s eyes, not seeing the obvious lies apparent in the hazel coloring.

“You’re so weird sometimes,” Gerard kissed his cheek again, nodded to Bert and started to walk away with Frank pulled close to his body.

Mikey stayed back, moving aside for the happy couple. All of his anger was replaced with deep confusion and hurt. He wondered how the hell could Gerard do this to him? Hadn’t all of their alone time been spent telling each other how much they loved, and would always love the other? Yeah, Mikey was mad. Who wouldn’t be mad at someone who broke your arm, but that hardly seemed like a break-up to him. Judging by the amount of space between Frank and Gerard (none, really), Mikey concluded that the one who said he’d always be there for him, would never hurt him, had gone back on his word in the worst ways.

I dunno if you guys have heard, but I've got a new story and I'm shamelessly whoring it amongst my other narratives. It's a Gerard/Bert based off of a one-shot that I wrote a while ago. The new story is titled the same as the one-shot: What We Remember.
It would mean a lot to me if you took the time to read and comment that.