Author's Note: This fic is actually dedicated to Bill, my landlord's crappy repair man, who never fixes our heater properly, so it rattles, and that sound, inspired this story. Drake and Josh New Year's fluff- I hate NYE, but I feel the need to write my ships nice stories for it every year anyway. Whatever.
Disclaimer: I don't think Santa took my TV show right's requests very seriously. I still don't own D&J.
Josh Nichols should be studying, but his books are sitting in front of him, a useless pile on the floor, and he's just listening. He's listening to the way his old heater shakes and rattles in its supreme effort to warm his apartment. He's listening to the wind howl outside, making branches hit against his windows, a constant tapping. He's listening his stereo; playing the same twelve songs it's been playing all night, all semester, all year, Drake's first CD. God, he's so proud, even now, on the millionth playback, it gives him chills and makes him grin like a fool. It's probably not healthy, how often he listens to these songs, but he can't help himself. For years, Drake's voice filled his room, his thoughts, and his life, making things brighter and more vibrant. He's alone now, sitting in this little room in Boston, and the ache can be overwhelming, but just listening to the CD, allowing that voice to wash over him again and again? It helps, it makes him feel less alone, and more like maybe Drake will come bursting in at any moment, telling some story about some girl or another. More like home.
He thinks, although he's never had the guts to ask, that some of the songs might just be about HIM, and it always makes him shiver a little. He wonders about them, where Drake was when he wrote each line and note, what it was that made him choose those words. He wonders what Drake is doing tonight, probably not sitting alone in his room listening to a broken heater, he thinks. It's Christmas week, and all he's knows for sure is that Drake isn't home. Audrey had been upset, both boys had begged off the 'home for the holidays' thing, but Josh had never had so much school work in his life, and as he explained to her, he needed to take this time to study, or he would fail out and then his life would be over. She'd called him overdramatic, but he thinks she understood. Drake is off- somewhere, doing something big and rock star like, Josh assumes. Christmas day had been a bit bleak, but he had at least called his family, and lectured Megan about her new boyfriend for awhile, so that helped. Now though, he's wondering if maybe he should have just gone home, since he's not getting any studying done anyway. He's lost track of time these past few days, just eating and staring blankly at text books, and then getting lost in Drake's voice for hours at a time.
Drake Parker should be having the time of his life, but he's just leaning against a wall, lost in his own thoughts. The room is bright and cheerful, and loud, deafening almost with voices and footsteps and music and cell phones and laughter, but Drake can't really hear any of it. It's nothing but a dull roar; he's numb to these sounds, to these people, to this place. It's stupid because this is exactly where he's always wanted to be, and he can't enjoy it, not really. These people are fans and fellow artists, they're groupies, models and mangers, up and coming actresses and notorious party boys, the beautiful people, famous faces, perfect bodies, they are his peers now. So he should dance with that girl in corner, giving him the eye, or take shots with those guys by the bar, they were at his last show, but he can't make himself move from this spot on the wall. He's never been good at wanting the right things, and this is no exception, because all he wants now is to see Josh.
He wants to hear Josh's voice; he wants it so badly he actually shakes sometimes. He misses Josh fiercely, and he hates it. He's a star, he's got it made, and some nights, like tonight, he wishes he could just crawl back to San Diego and on to their old couch and sit with Josh for days. Actually, what he really wants is Josh here, with him, but Josh is off being smart in Boston, studying things Drake can't even pronounce. Josh is across the country and Drake is alone, and it sucks. He knows this is what normal people do, they grow up and have lives without each other, but he's pretty sure it shouldn't be this way for them. After all, his first CD has 12 songs, and 7 of them are, in some way or another, about Josh- and that can't be normal either. Who the hell writes songs about their stepbrother? He makes an impulsive decision and pulls out his phone.
"Josh?" he says into the phone, and he grins, because no one ever sounds nearly as happy to hear from him as Josh does.
"I was wondering," he continues after a minute of Josh babble, "what are you doing for New Year's?"
"That thing isn't going to blow up or anything is it?" Drake asks, pointing to Josh's heater. It's New Year's Eve and Drake is sitting on Josh's couch, he arrived in Boston a few hours earlier, and he cannot get over just how good it is to see Josh.
"I hope not, it always does that." Josh replies, sitting down next to Drake and handing him a beer.
"And it doesn't make you crazy?" Drake asks with a raised eyebrow.
"I'm used to it." Josh says, shrugging.
"I'd have hit it with something weeks ago." Drake says opening his drink and taking a sip.
"That doesn't surprise me," Josh says, smiling a little. Drake grins back at him, almost beaming. He wishes everything in his life could be as easy, could make as much sense as him and Josh does. " I am still kind surprised that you're here though." Josh says after a minute.
"Why? I told you I was coming." Drake says.
"Yeah I know but, you must have had like, a million cool party invites tonight, and you came to sit with me and my broken heater. How come?" Josh asks.
"I have a thing for broken heaters." Drake deadpans.
"Drake! Seriously." Josh chides, and Drake grins again.
"I don't know man, I guess I just miss you." He says with a shrug. It's a huge understatement but he decides Josh doesn't need to know that. Not yet anyway.
"I miss you too." Josh says softly, "You should call more." He accuses.
"You know I don't like the phone." Drake says, scowling a little, "you should just come on tour with me." He says.
"College?" Josh says gesturing around to the stacks of textbooks that decorate his apartment.
"Overrated." Drake says.
"Not really," Josh replies, rolling his eyes.
"Ok, but I'm cooler." Drake says.
"Of course." Josh says, and Drake smirks a little at the sarcasm in his voice, they've had this same conversation about 100 times. He figures one of these times Josh will give in. After all Drake is good at getting what he wants, and Josh isn't good at saying no to Drake.
"So you'll do it then?" He asks.
"Nope." Josh says, grinning.
"You're no fun." Drake says, pouting playfully.
"I am so fun. I am super fun, like amazing fun, like fun times a billion like-"
"Josh!" Drake holds up a hand to stop Josh's self defense babble, " shut up." He says.
"I resolve to pass my finals." Josh says, taking a gulp of beer and staring at Drake.
"Boring." Drake chides, and Josh sighs,
"And what do you resolve to do? Sleep with eight super models?" Josh asks.
"Nah. Did that last year." Drake says, grinning wickedly and waggling his eyebrows.
"Course you did." Josh says, rolling his eyes and deciding it's best not to think about how true that may or may not be.
"Good times," Drake says, " but no, I have better plans for next year."
"Which are?" Josh asks, and a tiny selfish part of him, wants Drake to say, 'I resolve to stay in this crappy apartment with you Josh! We'll just stay on this couch forever! Screw my music career!' But he's pretty sure that won't be Drake's answer.
"Convince you to come to LA with me?" Drake suggests, grinning.
" Drake" Josh chides, grinning.
"Yeah, yeah, school." Drake says, " Seriously though 'see Josh more' is on my list. Missing you sucks." He says, and Josh's heart rate speeds up.
"I know the feeling," Josh says.
"It's not normal." Drake says, running a hand through his hair and suddenly looking nervous.
"What's not?" Josh asks.
"Us. This." Drake says, shifting closer to Josh on the couch, " I mean when I'm surrounded by gorgeous models I should not be like, 'I miss Josh,' and you should not have listened to my CD so many times it skips."
"We never were normal," Josh says, swallowing the hard lump that is rising in his throat.
"Yeah I know- I just, even fun stuff isn't as much fun without you, and I keep trying to figure out why." Drake says, and he moves even closer to Josh, close enough that Josh's skin begins to tingle, and this is not good. Not good at all.
"Did you come up with anything?" he asks, and his hands seek Drake, almost of their own accord, settling on his knee. Drake grins and puts his hand over Josh's, and Josh thinks, just for a second, he'd do anything Drake asked.
"I think so," Drake says, leaning in and kissing Josh softly.
The year is ticking away, and Drake is licking his way from Josh's ear to his collarbone, and it is easily the sexiest thing ever. Drake has heard it said that the way you spend your New Year's eve is a sign, a prediction, of the way you'll spend the rest of year. Well, it's like, 11:59, and he's naked, and his hands are all over Josh, everywhere they can reach, and his mouth his following, and Josh's tongue is tracing these little circles that-fuck- yes, Drake can totally do this for the rest of the year, for the rest of his life even.
Who would have thought that Josh was this good a kisser? It's amazing, because it makes Drake feel like every other person he's kissed means nothing, like his lips where actually made for Josh's lips. Like his body was made to slide up next to Josh's and his skin was made to come alive when it feels Josh's touch, and everything they have was just made to be together. So Drake thinks, when he his mind is capable of more than moans and grunts, that if this was wrong, or abnormal or whatever, than it wouldn't be this... perfect.
" I love you..." Josh breaths out, gasping, moaning,
" I know, I love you too," Drake returns, beads of sweat running down his forehead. And Josh's heater rattles, and the wind howls, making branches beat against the window, and the on the television people scream and shout, but all Drake can hear is the rapid beating of Josh's heart. The most beautiful sound he's ever heard