Title: The Room Inside My Heart

Fandom: RENT

Rating: PG-13/T

Summary: How long does it take to feel again? Mark/Roger slash.

Disclaimer: Obviously, I don't own RENT, just renting the characters for awhile.

A/N This chapter is...well, I don't know what the hell it is. They have sex, yeah, but its not exactly what you might call smut. This stuff is a bitch for me to write, because I always tend to get too metaphysical and wordy...I did the snapshot thing again, where its basically scenes from the next day, whatever...and the stuff interspersed throughout in italics is basically just Mark waxing philosophical about the stuff thats happening...sort of like commentary, I guess.

Sex is not alway happy, wonderful, spiritual, la la la field of flowers...but I would like to believe that it could be, so this chapter is me looking through rose colored lenses at the world. Enjoy...

To All My Reviewers, especially the fabulous Harpers Pixie: I love you guys with all my heart, you make me want to keep writing.

Also: the fraulein : I apologize for the schizophrenic formatting on the other chapters; it should be fixed now.

This chapter is dedicated to my brother, who I caught this morning writing a Star Wars, Anakin/Obi-Wan slash fanfic. I was so proud...

Chapter 7: The Way You Look When You See Heaven

''nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals

the power of your intense fragility; whose texture

compels me with the color of its countries

rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes

and opens; only something in me understands

the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)

nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands''

- e.e. cummings

(Mark's POV)

I feel compelled to watch him all the time. Every move he makes, I have this need to record it. I think that maybe he gets cranky when I follow him around with my camera, but he never shows it.

Rogers eyes are different. They changed. Or, I should say, they changed back. When I first knew him in high school, and then when we moved into the loft, before the April and the drugs, and the AIDS and Mimi...then his eyes were magnetic, captivating. They were the exact color of the ocean, blue-green and deep, completely fathomless. You could drown entirely in them, feeling that there was no better way to die.

When he knew April, before the drugs, his eyes were bluer. They were a kind of bright blue, like a summer sky, but not as pretty. It was almost an angry blue. After the drugs, they were a foggy, sleepy, dull blue. After April killed herself, and he found out he had AIDS, then they were a sickly, near-gray blue for months.

With Mimi, his eyes were greener. Sometimes they were a sharp, biting green, like a blade of grass, or other times they were a swampy green, like a pond.

They were never the way they used to be, though. Not like when we were younger, and his eyes could absolutely floor you with just one look. They had not been that way for years. Not until recently.

Roger was sitting on the floor, holding his guitar, absent-mindedly strumming it. I was filming, of course. He looked up, grinned, and stuck his tongue out at me.

''Rog, don't stick it out unless youre gonna use it,'' I said.

He laughed, a real laugh that rang through the air and echoed off of the walls. ''You're cute, you know,'' he said.

''Do you really think so?'' I asked, not quite believing him. I had never thought of myself as cute.

Roger rolled his eyes at me. ''Yes, I really think so.''

A few moments passed. While I watched him, I thought about what he had said, and I could not help thinking that this whole situation we had found ourselves in bordered on bizarre. It was like a Salvador Dali painting, strange but fascinating; the different aspects not really making any sense in themselves, yet coming together to form a wonderful finished product.

There had been death, there had been change. There had been destruction like a forest fire, clearing the old so that the new could grow. There had been rain, and then sun, and there would be rain again, but it would not be the same. It never rains the same way twice, and no two snowflakes are alike. Nature is about chaos; random events that do not appear to be connected in any way, yet somehow, through whatever chain, are linked.

And so here we were, me and Roger, connecting links in the chain. What made it happen? What made us connect? I don't know. It could have been some sort of plan written long before we were born; an experiment of some god. We cant know. Its stupid to ask. What we are is a Zen koan, a question that cannot have an answer, and should not be given one. If someone asked me: ''How did this happen, with you two? How did your apparently straight best friend all of a sudden, only a little while after his girlfriend died, decide that he loves you?'' I would probably laugh, and say: ''42.''

I filmed him while he played a song, a song with no words. But words were not needed, language is a barrier to emotion, it cheapens it, and gets in the way.

His beautiful, long fingers moved gracefully over the guitar strings, and he leaned back slightly, head tilted, lost in the music. His eyes were closed, and his lips were parted slightly. I wondered to myself if he would look that way when we finally had sex, if he would wear the same look of heavenly ecstasy. I hoped so.

And he did.

We sat together on the floor. Roger put the guitar down and said, ''I went to the store today.'' He pulled something out of the pocket of his jacket, which was lying across the couch.

I smiled. He put his arms around me and kissed me, first slowly and gently, then with more intensity. As his tongue moved in my mouth, I ran my hands all over his body, touching him everywhere. His fingers fumbled with the buttons on my shirt, and his mouth moved to my neck.

-Its quiet and different. It is not odd, it is not strange. It was supposed to be. Predestined. We were born to fit together. Like a puzzle that could not be completed without the missing piece. Not weird. Familiar. Ok. Does it really matter what body a person comes into the world with; male or female? Is gender a barrier to love? I heard somewhere that the ancient Greeks believed that in the beginning of time, when souls were created, they were split into two pieces. The pieces were separated, sent to opposite corners of the earth. Throughout many lifetimes, they have to find their way back to each other; find the body that the missing half of their souls resides in. It could be a man, or a woman. It does not matter. All that matters is, they fit together. There is a coming home, a sense that, yeah, this is what I was missing. No questions. Don't ask. It gets in the way. Feeling, that is what is important.

I moaned and let sensation wash over me. Then I pushed him away from me gently, because I wanted to look at him. I just wanted to see, to burn the memory into my mind.

-I lived my whole life seeing things through a camera lens, finding a perfect moment worth capturing, something that I could always hold on to, rewind it, replay it. I could think, ''this is what I saved, I froze this scene in time, it is mine.'' My camera was turned off now, and sitting idly on the table. It looked small, and like a toy. Machines can break, film reels can be lost, but the mind can remember things, emotions, sensations, that will never be lost or broken. Those things, those perfect moments, will live on inside the mind, forever etched into the consciousness of whoever chooses to keep them there.

His long hair framed his face like a cloud; his eyes burned like fiery oceans. Lips were reddened and full from bruising kisses. Beautiful.

Roger managed to get all the buttons on my shirt undone; three broke in the process and made sounds like pins dropping as they flew across the room, landing where, I did not know. They looked like shooting stars while falling.

He kissed my bare chest; his tongue ran along my collarbones and sent little shivers and delicious shockwaves throughout my body. His hand groped at the zipper on my jeans, pulling it down. He touched me where I most needed to be touched; fingers closing over the hardness between my legs. Moving his lips away from the top half of my body, he focused his attention on what was lower. I closed my eyes.

-Every now and again, one door in our life closes, and another one is opened. There are exits and entrances, faces move in and out of our eye view, and some almost disappear, but they are never truly gone. They are waiting behind some other door, a door that we have not yet discovered. And sometimes there are windows in our life, windows that we never knew were there until one day, the sun shines through them, and we truly see for the first time.

The window in the loft was open. It was twilight; that sacred, in-between time of the day when the veil between the worlds is thinnest; you are not quite sure if it is day or night, the sky holds both the sun and the moon in her arms, and a kind of hush falls around the world.

Hands touched, fingers entwined, mouths kissed, and licked, and sucked, and bit. Bodies crashed together like the meeting of waves out on the ocean. I watched him while he came; sweat on his skin like dew droplets on roses in May mornings, head tilted, eyes shut, lips parted. A wordless sigh that sounded like music; a moan.

-The French have a word for everything, or so I have heard. They have invented some of the most important and descriptive sexual phrases that permeate language today. Their term for orgasm means ''the little death''. Do you really die, in a sense? Men are different than women with this; women are multi-orgasmic creatures, they can come over and over again right away during sex, whereas with men, it is once. One time, one explosion of hot life that comes rushing, while the man is powerless to stop it. So, in a sense, it is a death. A complete and utter lack of control, a letting go, a surrendering. Just holding on tightly to whoever you are with, whispering and gasping, sighing and screaming with pleasure as you touch heaven, and then fall back down to earth, to waiting arms.

Roger looked at me, through eyes half-closed. He and I were lying together silently on the floor, wrapped in each others arms. Part of me was terrified, yes, utterly and completely terrified that this was a mistake, a scar on our relationship. Things could get weird, confusing, or even just utterly horrible for us, because of what had happened. Some lucky people can just fuck whoever, some nameless person whose face they will never remember, because they did not feel anything. They felt the physical; they felt pleasure and joy and happiness; sex was like a drug for them, they took a hit, and were ok for a while.

Love is different. When you have sex with someone, and you love them...then making love becomes terrifyingly beautiful, white-hot and extreme. It can be the most wonderful thing that you could ever possibly do, or it can scare you to death.

I looked back at him, stared into his eyes, and I saw the ocean again, deep and perfect. Those were the eyes I remembered, and they made his whole face look somewhat different. Softer, more relaxed; less tense and severe. It was like a completion, a wheel had come full circle somewhere. We had moved out of the darkness and into where it was lighter. And there would be more darkness, but it did not seem so frightening any more, something had taken the edge off the Night. Maybe it was the moon, which was still full. Like the sun always being underneath the clouds, the Moon is always there, up in the sky, looking down, even when we cannot see it. Knowing these things is a comfort, it gives us a sense that we are not alone. Things happen, seasons change, and we change too; people are always growing and evolving.

I put my fingers against his cheek, and he brought his hand up and rested it on top of mine. Links in a chain. No words.

We fell asleep like that, the moonlight covering our bodies like a blanket. As I drifted off, I heard the Moon Goddess laugh again, but this time she was laughing along with two strangely familiar voices.

A/N I have noooooooo idea...tell me what you think, and I will buy you the entire town of Hershey, Pennsylvania.