Summary: Pony has been acting strange for the past few months. One night they decide to follow him and what they find is a shock. OMC/Pony

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''Chapter One

The months after Johnny and Dally died were hard everyone, especially Ponyboy. He stopped eating and sleeping, stopped writing and drawing. Instead he put all his energy into studying sometimes working until he literally collapsed in exhaustion. He was spiraling and no one knew how to help him. It left Darry terrified and for a long while he would be forced to bury his brother next.

Then, something changed.

None of them knew what it was all they knew was that Pony slowly began to get better. He started to eat and sleep again, and carry both his journal and his sketchbook everywhere he went. He even started going out again (although none of them knew where exactly he went, they were just glad that the baby of their family was showing some life again). It took nearly a year but finally everything in their small world was back to normal, or rather, as normal as it could get without Johnny and Dallas anyway.

Two long years passed without incident. Then... Pony began to act...strange.

It started with his appearance.

He grew his hair out until it fell down his back in thick lush waves, keeping it tied away from his face with a thick leather band. He bought kohl to outline his eyes, the grey-green hues even more striking on his soft features.

After his appearance came his attitude.

At random moments he would stare off into space with a small content smile playing on his lips. Whenever the older guys in the gang teased him about his non-existent love life he would blush and smile a secretive little smile that left them all guessing. All in all he was happier than any them had ever seen him and his bouts of depression had all but vanished.

And finally there was his schedule.

Every morning Pony left almost an hour early for school not returning home until half way through dinner, sometimes even later. Darry continuously questioned him but was rebuffed for his efforts, however they did discover that he wasn't doing drugs or worse so they were forced to leave it alone...

Which of course they didn't.

Five months had passed since these changes had begun and it was frustrating to all the older men in their small family that none of them knew what exactly their youngest was doing that required him to be so secretive. They all had guesses, none good, and all of them were praying they were wrong, which of course, led to their current predicament ; sitting parked in Darry's truck watching as Pony's school let out.

They watched as Pony exited the school and looked around, obviously searching for someone.

"Who's he lookin' for?" Soda whispered and Darry frowned deeply.

"I don't know. I know it's not us."

Up on the school steps Pony continued to look around before his gaze landed on whoever he was searching for and a vibrant smile stole across his face. Two-bit followed his gaze and gasped.

Striding toward the young greaser was a tall, handsome man standing at 6'4 with short black hair, barely long enough to touch the top of his ears, and kind grey eyes. He wore a pair of black slacks and a bone white dress shirt that showed of his tightly muscled frame.

"W-Who's that? And how does he know Pony?"

Darry growled softly watching as the unknown man came to a stop directly in front of his baby brother. One of the man's hands reached out to cup Pony's cheeks before their lips met in a passionate kiss.

"Holy Shit." Soda shot Steve a dirty look for his comment, watching as the couple broke apart with matching smiles.

"That's why he's being all secretive? He's gay? Why would he hide this, he knows we don't mind."

Two-Bit questioned, hurt that his young friend thought so little of them that he felt he had to hide his relationship. Darry shrugged refusing to show that it hurt him just as much, instead he watched as Pony and his mystery man started to walk toward a beautiful black mustang, hands clasped together. As the two enter the car he revved up his truck and began to follow it at a safe distance.

They drove for nearly twenty minutes before they pulled up to a theatre just on the outskirts of town. In front of them the couple exited the car and entered the building carrying black dry cleaning bags.

"What the hell is going on, Dar?" Soda inquired softly and the oldest Curtis brother sighed.

"I don't know. Only one way to find out."

The four greasers shared a look then as one the left the car and entered the building.

The inside was huge and filled to the brim with people of all ages and states of dress, all focused on the dimly lit stage in front of them. However Ponyboy and his beau were nowhere in sight.

"Good Evenin' and welcome to the Tulsa Theatre Club's performance of The Moulin Rouge Spectacular Spectacular."

Greeted a voice and they turned to find a cheerful looking brunette behind them wearing a tag that said Mindy, her blue eyes full of mischief.

"I'll be leadin' to yer seat." She continued leading to a row of seats near the door. Bemused the men stared at her and took a seat nodding their thanks.

"No problem. We hope you enjoy the show." This said she sent them one more smile then disappeared.

Once she was gone the theatre went completely dark and everything went silent.

A spotlight appeared on stage to show a tall broad shouldered man wearing a finely fitted suit, the sleeves cut off.

"Good Evening. Welcome to The Tulsa Theatre Club's performance of a Moulin Rouge Spectacular Spectacular, written by two of our very own actors. Our very own Kristopher Reigns who will be playing Christian and his beautiful lover Ponyboy, who will be playing our courtesan. We ask that you be respectful and keep conversation to minimum. Thank you. Please enjoy."

Another spotlight appeared on stage as the first man left it and a short blond man appeared wearing a victorian jester outfit minus the hat.

Music began to play and he began to sing.

There was a boy,

A very strange enchanted boy

They say he wandered very far

Very far, over land and sea

A little shy and sad of eye, but very wise

Was he

And then one day

A magic day, he passed my way

The stage lights came on to reveal Pony's beau sitting at a typewriter, his face haggard as he stared down at it in mourning. A bottle of whiskey was clasped in his hand and a look of deep pain crossed his features as he placed his trembling fingers on the typewriter.

Had they not known he was acting they would've thought his world had been ripped away from him.

The jester continued to sing.

And while we spoke of many things

Fools and kings

This he said to me

Kristopher spoke the next line as the Jester sang it.

The greatest thing, you'll ever learn

Is just to love and be loved…in return

The jester's spotlight dimmed leaving Kristopher alone on stage. The man began to speak his voice broken.

"The Moulin Rouge. A nightclub. A dancehall. And a bordello. Ruled over by Harold Zidler, a kingdom of nighttime pleasures. Where the rich and powerful came to play with the young and beautiful creatures of the underworld. The most beautiful of these creatures was the woman I loved, Satine."

A dimmer spotlight showed in a balcony built on the stage to show someone sitting in a chair, face hidden by a black veiled hat. They didn't speak but Kristopher continued to do so.

"A courtesan, she sold her love to men. They called her the sparkling diamond and she was the star of the Moulin Rouge. The woman I loved is…dead."

The crowd gasped at his words and the theatre went dark, but the man continued to speak. He spoke of his arrival in Paris and of joining the Children of the Revolution introducing the dwarf, Henri-Marie-Raymond de Toulouse-Lautrec-Monfa, although they only called him Toulouse. As the play progressed the Greasers found themselves becoming further engrossed in the story it painted, each of them hanging on to the edge of their seat.

They watched as dancers "Zidler" danced merrily on the stage anticipation building in their gut. Pony still hadn't appeared on the stage. The actors all fell silent and the lights dimmed slightly.

A swing was lowered from the ceiling and on it...sat Ponyboy. Darry couldn't help but gasp, narrowing his eyes as he noticed many men shifting in their seats. The teen was wearing a tight white jewel encrusted bodice that clung to his slender frame, delicate nylon stockings that showcased his long shapely legs, and a pair of white 6-inch heels, a top hat perched daintily a top his head. His hair was pinned back in an elegant tail of curls that fell just below his shoulders.

"Whoa." Soda breathed and the others nodded in agreement. The teen began to sing and dance, moving through the complicated dance moves comfortably despite the heels adorning his feet. They began to cheer only to still as the teen froze on the swing, gave a gasping breath, then fell backwards unconscious.