Eleven

A/n. How many of you have peeked into my blog? Did the posts there give too much of the story away? Any predictions, comments, anything? All this white noise makes me nervous.

I am going to try and post once twice a month. I'm setting a reminder on my phone to do it. However, I am willing to post "bonus" chaps if you guys provide some reviews/comments/con-crit. I am not withholding chps for reviews, just giving bonus chp. Hope no one gets offended by this. I'll start with 2 review for an extra chp a month. Next update should be the week of the 25th (xmas gift?) Bonus cup would be next week.


Sean sat on his bed acoustic guitar in his hands. His wavy brown hair fell onto his eyes as he concentrated on tuning the instrument. When the guitar was ready he looked up at Gerald, a smile on his lips. Sean's blue eyes were covered by thin wire glasses, and held a softness never found in his brothers eyes. He didn't wait for Gerald to take a seat he just started to play. He played a sad tune, followed by his soft and melodic voice. Gerald crossed his legs sitting in front of him with out thinking twice about it. He closed his eyes and let the young boy's voice and music calm him.

Sean had by far surpassed Gerald when it came to music ability, he had the ear for it and if he heard a song twice and sometimes once he'd be able to play it for you. He strummed his guitar, the notes enchanting to the point that Gerald gravitated towards him, his head naturally resting against the boy's knee.

The Bruce Springsteen song sliced like a knife through his heart, bringing emotions up to his skin, thick like a layer of sweat. All the words of comfort Gerald had ever wished to hear, all the words of comfort he had rejected fell into him in the sweet soft voice of Sean like a warm blanket.

"Because sad eyes never lie." He couldn't stop the tears; they flowed silently onto the jean clad knee. Sean felt the wetness but just continued to strum, to sing putting everything he ever wished to say into the song. "Well for awhile I've been watching steady, ain't gonna move 'til you good and ready."

Nothing needed to be said, no touch was needed. Sean just continued to play "Sad Eyes" over and over again and Gerald silently cried letting the music comfort him, letting Sean touch his heart like he so many times wished Michael would.

Gerald grew tired, the silent release of tears and feeling wearing him out. His eyes close and the slow rhythm of his breathing alert Sean of his state. The notes become distant slower, silent.

Sean lets the guitar gently fall beside him and his fingers comb through Gerald's head wishing to soften away all his problems with the same ease that he unties the knots from the tresses. He hums to him the same sad tune.

"I guess sad eyes, never lie."

"Are you going to tell me what's wrong?" Gerald's eyes fluttered open and he fetl disoriented for a minute.

Sean had been playing a different tune, something original Gerald suspected. However, once he noticed Gerald was awake he put the guitar down despite Gerald's complains. He scouted back towards the wall his bed was set against and patted the space beside him.

Sean was growing about as fast as his brother had, Gerald could tell that in a few months he would be much taller than him.

Sean leaned his head on Gerald's shoulder and whispered again "Tell me what's wrong."

Gerald was frighten the flood gates would open again, he whispered back not trusting his voice not to break if he did it loud. "Everything is wrong."

Sean had always known that Gerald's shoulders carried too much weight. When Gerald was seven he had come over and there were envelopes on the kitchen table, the mail that Sean's dad had brought in. Sean was barely 4 and the memory is now a bit blurred but the essence of it remains. Gerald noticed a bill and his little hand came to hit his forehead

"We have to pay bills." Sean's concept of bills wasn't clear yet, but he recalled his father taking a similar stand sometimes.

"Tell me so I can help make it better." Gerald smiled; the naivety of his friend was tender.

"Just keep playing, that makes me feel better." Sean didn't ask again he took the guitar in his hands and continued to play.

Gerald didn't go home that night, he lied down on Sean's bed and Sean played until his fingers hurt and then some more.


Michael came home past midnight. He had some beers but not enough to be drunk, the whole time he spent with his friends the only thing he had on his mind was to find out what was wrong with Gerald.

He stopped by Gerald's apartment; he knocked on the door until his knuckles were red. He didn't want to give up, but when a neighbor came out threatening to call the cops if he continued with the racket, he had no choice but to leave.

He stumbled up the stairs, more tired than intoxicated. His frustration turning into anger with every step he took. In the hall way he looked towards his brother's door. His feet fell heavy against the carpet as he approached the room. He didn't knock; he simply burst in as though it was his own. He was there to demand answers. Gerald was his best friend, not his brothers. Sean had no right to take him away from him. Gerald wasn't an old toy he would pass down to his little brother.

The sleeping boys didn't stir when the door banged against the wall. They were too far-gone in dreamland, covered with the safeness of each other's presence, the soft songs Sean sang still silently lulling them.

Michael's eyes swept over them, jealousy and tenderness collided in his chest; he just stared unable to react. Sean's left hand over his guitar and his right hidden underneath Gerald's body. Gerald's long hair fanned out over Sean's shoulder and the shared pillow. His right arm over Sean's chest and what hurt the most: Sean's head leaning towards Gerald's fore head, his lips resting against the bronze skin.

The only thing that stopped Michael from stomping in there and pulling them apart was the strong feelings he had for both boys. No matter how strong his jealousy was he couldn't be the one to tamper with their content state. They looked too peaceful, too happy. He reached for a blanket and covered them and then silently left the room.

His cell phone beeped alerting him of a text message. His friends wanted to make sure he got home ok.


A noise startled Gerald, his eyes flipped open but the room was empty. He felt soft lips on his forehead and the comfort that surrounded him took him straight back to sleep.

Sean also was woken by a sound, but not the beep of a cell phone, but his door being slammed against the wall. He watched how his brother stood watching them, how his hands fisted. He waited for Michael to do or say something.

'Just do something stupid,' he thought "give me a reason."

Sean had once admired his brother, granted he always thought he was a bit dense, but still he was someone to look up to. It hurt Sean that his brother pretended to not know him while at school. He pressed a true kiss to Gerald's forehead and tried to sleep again.

Morning was tense; the boys were woken up by Trent calling Sean's cell phone. Both youths tried to pretend like everything was fine. Sean tried to sound happy to hear his boyfriend's voice and Gerald tried to ignore the separation anxiety he felt when Sean pulled away.

Breakfast didn't go any better. Michael had barely grunted at them and wouldn't look them in the eyes. Sean was just waiting for him to say something stupid anything because he really needed a reason and any reason would do.

Gerald was quiet playing with his spoon. He knew Michael and the way his jaw was tense was a clear sign he was holding anger back. Gerald wondered if he was upset he spent the night there or that he had the last cup of orange juice.

He pushed the cup towards Michael, a shy smile on his face. Michael graced his fingers while taking the cup. Gerald felt a chill run down his arm and a blush grow on his face. The door bell rang and Sean excused himself since he was sure it was Trent.

"Did you have fun yesterday?" Michael had to strain himself to hear Gerald. He nodded his head handing the brown haired boy his juice back.

"Are you feeling better?" Gerald noticed how Michael's jaw relaxed and he wanted to touch it. He had stubble and the blond beards looked so soft. Gerald graced his hand against his own chin, it had been two days since he last shaved and you could barely feel any hairs growing.

Gerald nodded and Michael wanted to ask him how to fix their friendship. He wanted to tell him that with all the new friends he had, he felt nothing but lonely. That he missed their chats about comics and the noise of the arcade. He took a deep breath and was about to talk when Trent and Sean walked in.

Frustration turned to anger, because he'd lost his chance and because it was the feeling he felt most comfortable with. Gerald had immediately turned away from him and was chatting happily with Trent, no whispered words, no awkward silences.

Sean sat on Trent's knee and Michael sneered at them. Gerald observed how his jaw tensed back up. He tried to catch Michael's eyes, to give him the look that said calm down, but Michael wouldn't look at him.

Trent kissed Sean gently on the lips after complimenting him on his new shirt. Michael pushed his chair back and said that he didn't want to ruin his breakfast.

"Too early to feel sick." Gerald shot daggers at him. How dare he be such a hypocrite? Before Gerald could think of a response Sean was in his brother's face.

"What the fuck is your problem?" Michael didn't back down he looked down at his brother, his jaw looked so tense that Gerald doubted he'd be able to talk.

"You know very well what my problem is," he growled. Michael didn't know what his problem was; he just knew he was mad. Mad because Gerald was more comfortable with Sean, mad because attention wasn't on him or mad because his brother was kissing another boy, he had enough reason to be imad./i

Sean stepped away from Michael he moved towards his boyfriend and pulled him up for a forceful kiss.

"Is that your problem?" Michael's fist clenched. "I thought you were a homophobe only in front of youri friends,/i" He spat that word out like it was sour milk.

Michael gave Gerald a quick glance. The boys brown eyes were shining red with anger.

"I don't like watching you be a perv around me," his eyes were focused on Gerald, but the words were directed at his brother.

Gerald stood up, unsure of where he was getting the courage but tired of seeing Michael be an ass to his little brother. What happened to the over protective big brother?

"You need to shut up before you say more things that you will regret later." Gerald pushed Sean behind him. He knew Michael and the way his fist kept clenching and unclenching was clear sign that he was doing his best at holding back a punch. Trent who had been paralyzed in his seat took Sean's hand.

"Now you're the faggots' friend more than mine?" Gerald came up close to Michaels face. He wasn't intimidated, he wasn't scared or love sick, he was pissed. And he knew why, he was pissed because Michael was a hypocrite, he was pissed because Sean didn't deserve this in his own house and he was pissed because he still loved this ass hole in front of him.

"You are insulting your brother, Trent and I. I might not be able to hurt you, but if you call anyone that word again I can guarantee I will do my best to punch the stupid out of you."

Michael let a deep growl escape and flung his fist into the wall behind him. The other boys flinched at the noise and Gerald immediately ran to see if he was ok. Michael stopped him with one look and left the kitchen.

Gerald stared at the hole in the wall and Sean ran after Michael ignoring his boyfriend's protests.

He yelled at Michael to stop. When Michael swung his bedroom door shut he stopped it with the palm of his hand. Just like Michael had done the night before, he marched into the room as though it was his own.

"I'm fucking tired of you!" he yelled at his brothers back. Michael kept clenching his fist, he didn't want to hit his brother with this much anger because he was sure he would later regret it. "This is my house too and if I have to see you put your hands down your fucking girlfriend's pants you can shut you pie hole when I kiss my boyfriend."

"He is my Friend!" Michael yelled turning to face Sean. Sean smirked. "My fucking best friend, mine." Michael pushed Sean back against his bedroom door. Sean did nothing but smile.

Michael took him by the shirt lifting him until only the tip of his shoes touched the floor.

"Really?" Sean asked, the smile still in its place. "But are you his best friend?"

"Of course I am." Michael dropped his brother.

"Yes of course you are." Michael gave him a warning look, but Sean simply ignored it. "You are such a good friend that you stopped Frank from beating him up. You are such a good friend that you don't forget his birthday, that you know his mom as an alcoholic and he works so he can buy food and pay the light bill."

Michael knew none of this. He turned his back to Sean and mumbled something that Sean didn't care to decipher.

"You never got mad when he had to work extra hours. You never got mad when he stayed at home taking care of his mom."

"You're lying." Michael yelled.

"Why? Because he'si your best friend?/i" Anger was the emotion Michael felt more comfortable with, the one he hated the most was regret and the second his fist collided with his little brothers chin regret traveled through his veins.

Sean cleaned the blood from his lip. He didn't care that his brother looked sorry.

"As Gerald's best friend, I'm sure you wouldn't mind pulling the trigger." With that he turned around and left the room.


This chapter still needs a lot of work.

Song borrowed is "Sad eyes" by Bruce Springsteen