Title: Promise

Author: I_nv_u50

Disclaimer: Characters belong to Stephen King…

Rating: PG13

Warning: Chris/Gordie Slash… shounen ai… yaoi… boy/boy relations… get the idea yet?

Author's Notes: Hardly any Chris/Gordie slash out there O.o; and with so much potential in the movie… ah well. Another new favourite pairing of mine (this makes it what, thirteen +?) and one that was begging to be written… Not much else to say, except that I do plan to write more… eventually…

Justification of Pairing: Take your pick of moments from the movie. After the race in the junkyard, the look they shared…. When Gordie broke down and Chris got so close to comfort him… Teddy's face when he heard Ace call Chris a faggot (though that could be symbolic of an unrequited Teddy/Chris relationship… have to look into that…)  That last look Gordie and Chris share before Chris walks off at the end of the movie… any of those and more, actually…

Further AN: No offense is meant when they say faggot in the story – it's just the word they used and it wouldn't work to any other way of saying it T.T Really sorry about that…

Other than that, I hope you enjoy it ^^ Please review!! ^^

Christopher Chambers loved physical human contact. A pat on the back, a comforting arm around the shoulders, a shared laugh and a playful tussle, it was all well and good for him. There was something so incredibly comforting about touching, because it said all the things that to say aloud would demean, and in a way that was right, that was… perfect, in a way.

For Chris, human contact was perfect.

As it had become normal behaviour for Chris to touch his closest friends casually, none of them minded after a while. They seemed to realize he needed the reassurance, the stability of knowing that at least something was right in his world.

Chris' mother had died two weeks prior, and that left Chris alone to the mercies of his father and older brother, men who reputedly had no mercy. Losing his sole support in the family had almost sent Chris mad, and he had been found wondering the streets with a bloody nose and bruises covering what could be seen of his arms. He had claimed he fell down the basement stairs, because there had been no light. Although no one had really believed him, they accepted it, more comfortable in believing what they were told rather than believing what they saw.

Chris didn't come to school the next day, nor the next. When he appeared again, he had an arm crudely bandaged in a sling, and his face was bruised almost black.

Gordie Lachance observed it with a kind of bottled fury. He spoke quietly to Chris the entire day, not speaking louder than a murmur because of the way Chris inevitably flinched when he did. Yet still Chris grinned his shit-eating grin, and joked around in a voice hardly louder than a hoarse whisper.

When Gordie asked him why he looked like he did, trying to get Chris to answer truthfully, Chris shrugged and looked away, his expression resigned.

"It's not too bad, Gordie. He'll be out of it soon."

Gordie subsided, bristling with suspicion, yet unable to say more. There wasn't much more to say, in reality, although he hoped there would be.

Chris went home slowly that day, dawdling as he walked silently beside Gordie. And Gordie, wanting to help, tentatively reached out a hand and rested it lightly on Chris' unhurt shoulder, ignoring the smallest flinch the action received.

"Chris," he said softly, "why don't you stay the night? We can study what you missed and find some other stuff to do."

Chris turned his head to look sideways at Gordie, his eyes expressionless but for the flicker of gratefulness. "All right." He answered, and they turned right together instead of splitting up.

Gordie's parents were out that night, so he and Chris had the entire house to themselves. While these situations ended up being fun and carefree, almost utterly insane in the stupidity and absurdity they indulged themselves in when they had free reign of the house, this time was different.

Chris sat down at the kitchen table, looking blankly around as if he didn't quite know what to do. Gordie watched him for a second, a pang of not pity but sympathy mixed with anger making itself felt when he compared this Chris to the one who had been around before his mother's death.

"Chris?" he queried softly, and Chris started, and then shot Gordie a fake grin. The difference was more obvious, it lacked the brilliance, the Bite Me message his usual one held.

"What's it to you, Lachance?"

Gordie cocked his head thoughtfully. "What do you want to do?"

Chris watched Gordie silently for a second, then shrugged indifferently and turned away. "Nothing, actually." He responded quietly.

Gordie frowned, then glanced around, making sure that his parents actually were out of the house. "Want a smoke?"

Chris turned again at that, grinning a bit more normally. "Hell yea! It's been days, ya know?"

Gordie sneered back and sprinted up the stairs to his bedroom, heading straight for his secret stash, something his father had no idea about. His father would kill him if he found out, or he'd blame it on Chris. Which might actually be worse, considering.

He took two out and hid the rest of the packet carefully, cautiously noting that he'd have to get a new pack soon. He and Chris always seemed to have one when Chris came over.

Chris was waiting wordlessly for him at the bottom of the stairs, his eyes bright and anticipated. He looked more like Chris, and Gordie was pleased.

They stood outside on the porch as they smoked, in companionable silence, not needing words, but accepting the comfort that came which words would have complicated.

Gordie waited for Chris to sling an arm comfortably around his shoulders, as he usually did sometimes, or to rest a hand on Gordie's shoulder before letting it slide off, a quiet reassurance that somebody did care when Gordie's own father didn't.

He was surprised, and made more worried about his best friend when Chris made no move to touch him, rather choosing to stand leaning against the railing to the side of Gordie.

And Gordie felt a twinge of something that wasn't quite disappointment, but nor was it relieve. It was worry yes, and distress also, that came far too easily as identification.

"Chris," he began, suddenly feeling awkward.

Chris spun around to look at him. "Leave it alone, Lachance. There's nothing you can do. I'll just have to wait until I can get out of here, and then it'll be all right. Then," Chris paused, his voice catching in his throat, and he had to try twice before he could continue. "And then I'll never have to see him again!"

Gordie ached for his friend, and didn't bother to consider the consequences. Chris had always been there for him, and he had always been there for Chris, it was only right that he be there for his best friend now as well.

He reached out and yanked Chris' good shoulder towards him, pulling Chris into a one armed hug that had felt so much less awkward when they were twelve.

Chris froze against him, tense and unyielding before Gordie squeezed wordlessly with his arm, offering comfort and solace, telling Chris wordlessly that he was still there, that Chris was safe for the time being.

Chris breathed out sharply, then swore softly. "Tell anyone about this Lachance and you're a goner." His voice was low and almost defeated.

Gordie smirked habitually. "I won't tell if you don't, Chambers."

Chris turned his face to look at Gordie, his expression considering and thoughtful. His eyes were over bright, and his cheeks strangely flushed. "I guess you wouldn't, huh Gordie?"

Gordie shook his head in reply, agreeing. Then he smirked again. "Pinky swear."

Chris paused, then smiled again, a real smile, so much like the old Chris that Gordie almost couldn't tell them apart, except for the lurking traces of defeat in the blue eyes. "Pinky swear." Chris returned, and lifted a hand to cross himself, kissing his pinky and holding it up.

Gordie stared at it, his smirk fading, struck by a sense of déjà vu. They hadn't talked about it for a long time…

Chris' smile just stopped and he sucked in another sharp breath. "Gordie… Don't. Not now."

Gordie grinned back guilelessly, dropping the subject before it even began. He wasn't sure he wanted to explore the memories of that summer just yet either, not ready for the same thoughts that had crossed his mind on their long trek back Castle Rock to return just yet. He changed the subject. "Chris…" he started, unsure about how to go on.

"Leave it alone, Gordie." Now Chris just sounded tired, and he was looking away again, taking a long drag from the cigarette he still held between his fingers. He had held it that same way when they had been twelve, between thumb and forefinger, the other fingers curling restlessly above.

Gordie smiled, both at the memory and because the feelings the memory and the current Chris invoked in him ensured that he couldn't stay expressionless. "You'll always be safe here," Gordie said simply. "And welcome."

Chris stared at him for second longer than he usually did, and then took the cigarette from his mouth. "Gordie…" he murmured softly, and then Chris kissed him.

Gordie, unable to bring himself to feel surprised, relaxed almost immediately. Chris tasted like smoke and mist and fog, almost like fresh rain but for a slightly bitter taste that reminded Gordie of the coffee he sometimes drank in the mornings when he couldn't bring himself to wake up enough. Chris made a soft sound against his mouth, and Gordie brought up his other hand, suddenly understanding, holding onto Chris' shoulder, squeezing it gently, encouragingly.

After a few more seconds, Gordie decided he liked it. He began to kiss back, and Chris pulled away, suddenly looking distraught.

"Oh shit… oh shit Gordie, I'm sorry. Really I am…"

Gordie opened his eyes, trying to keep his feet on the ground and attempting to calm his spinning head. "What for?" he asked bluntly. "I liked it."

Chris gave him a dubious look.

Gordie sighed. "Chris… Really, I did. Sincerely," he added, smirking as Chris started to grin.

"Then… You don't mind?" Chris asked slowly, trying to figure something out.

"Why should I mind?" Gordie countered, and Chris grinned again, a real Chris grin, the kind he used to give. Gordie grinned back, pleased and happy about its return. He'd been worried for a while because of its absence…

"So… what now?" Chris asked after a few minutes of grinning.

Gordie shrugged. "Dunno."

They stared at each other for a few more seconds, then they both laughed.

"We could try it again…" Chris suggested, still sniggering.

Gordie nodded. "We could…"

Chris came closer. Gordie tried to catch his breath. "I've never kissed a boy before, you know," he said conversationally once he had caught his breath again. Chris' face was only a few inches away.

"I haven't either." Chris confided, smirking. "Can't be that much different from kissing a girl?" Chris quirked an eyebrow at Gordie's sudden flush. "Never kissed a girl either? Lachance, I think I'm disappointed."

"You shouldn't be," Gordie retorted hotly. "Otherwise I wouldn't be here kissing you, would I?"

Chris froze at that. "You're right…" he said softly, lifting his eyes to study Gordie's. "You shouldn't be. If word gets out that either of us are faggots… My father will just about kill me, and yours…"

Gordie shrugged, trying to look unconcerned. In truth, he cared more about Chris' family's reaction compared to his own. "He'll disown me or send me to boarding school or something. Are you sure you're all right with it? I think I'll be happy with it. I know I wouldn't give up our friendship for the world, maybe this is just the next step to take."

Chris stared at him thoughtfully, trying to weigh things in his mind. Finally he sighed. "I wouldn't mind being with you, like that," he said eventually, his voice heavy with the reluctance of saying it. He gave a quick glare in Gordie's direction. "And if you call me a pussy because of it I'll pound you one."

Gordie laughed outright at that. "Chris… If I call you a pussy, you could always return the insult!"

Chris grinned again at that. "It isn't so much an insult," he responded. "Now are we going to kiss again or not?"

Gordie smothered his laughs and reached out for his best friend, pulling him closer somewhat shyly.

Chris smirked and bent his head, making the kiss fiercer than their first had been. Gordie barely had time to think before his brain melted and his eyes fluttered shut. Against his mouth, Chris smiled.