Thanks to Brooke, Britania Control 1.0, Four Way Crimp, xXxBooshLoverxXx and xxpipxx for reviewing.
Dedicated to Britania Control 1.0 for the most lovely comments I've ever received for anything I've written.
Vince didn't get any better. It had been a week. Howard had called the doctor out but the pretentious knob said it was just flu and that there wasn't much he could do to help. Between them, Howard and Louisa just about managed to get Vince comfortable but it was virtually impossible to stop the pain he was feeling. The younger man just felt as though he was constantly spewing his guts up. He could hardly even make it to the bathroom alone. Howard was constantly helping Vince to his feet and steering him, sweaty and shivering, to the toilet.
"I don't like it." frowned Howard, watching nervously as Vince slept restlessly, twitching about erratically.
"It's just flu." Louisa said calmingly, "There's nothing you can do. Just let him sweat it out."
"But he's not getting any better."
"But nothing. If you're really concerned you can ring Eleanor, see if he suffers from anything."
"No. It's okay, I'll ask him when he wakes up."
"You wont get any sense from him, he's delirious. He was talking about talking gorilla's, Shaman and flying carpets earlier."
Vince hurled again, moaning loudly.
"Have you noticed how fat he's getting too?" Louise continued, "It doesn't make any sense coz he hasn't eaten anything since he's got here. It does seen a bit… strange."
"I'm sure the doctor's right. He'll be fine." Howard tried to cover his nervousness.
"Grow a backbone. Ring her."
It took Howard thirty minutes to work up the courage to ring Eleanor and even when he did, he hung up as soon as she answered. Three more attempts and Louise ripped the phone from his fingers and rang Eleanor herself.
"Oh, hello. Is that Mrs Noir?… My names Louise, I'm Howard's cousin… Howard Moon… You were engaged to him… he's in love with your son… Vince, yes. I know Vince. Hang on, here's Howard." she thrust the phone at her cousin. "Talk!" she scowled.
"Uh, hello." Howard said.
"What d'you look like?"
"Umm, quite tall. Moustache."
"No, I don't remember you at all."
"Well, that really doesn't matter. Vince is here."
"Oh. Is he? And I suppose you want me to come and get him, do you? Flaming pain in the arse he is. Though you do sound a particularly well hung young man. Maybe there's some way I can repay you for your… kindness."
"Umm, no." Howard stammered. "Look, Vince isn't well. I just wondered if there's any medical things I should no about."
A short pause and then; "What's wrong with him?"
Howard noticed the subtle, yet massive change in Eleanor's tone. She sounded genuinely concerned and Howard's brain went immediately into panic mode. Eleanor had never been shown to care about her son before, maybe there was something seriously wrong.
"Well, he's exhausted, he keeps throwing up-"
"Has he been eating?"
"Does he look fat?"
"A bit. I guess…"
"Well, I suppose…"
"Get him to hospital!"
"Get him to hospital. Tell them he's got Wilson's disease."
Howard had leapt into action. He'd bundled Vince into a taxi, drove to the hospital, told the doctor what Eleanor had said and then got shoved onto a seat in a waiting room while people began to rush around.
One nurse kept coming over to check if he needed a cup of tea but he couldn't stomach it. He just wanted to know what was going on inside the room. This waiting was killing him.
"Mr Moon?"Howard jumped awake. He didn't know how he'd fallen asleep or when but now there was doctor sat on the seat next to him, looking solemn.
"What's happened? Where is he? Is he okay?"
"He's fine." reassured the doctor, "Absolutely fine."
"He's got a genetic disease, it causes too much copper in the blood. It was spotted early in his life so he can control it with injections and eating fruit and stuff. Usually it's totally under control, hardly noticeable."
"So what happened?"
"He's been drinking too much, not getting enough sleep… it all adds up. And he says he hasn't eaten since you left him."
"But that was three weeks ago."
"Mmm." The doctor frowned. "Exactly. He's in there now. You can go and speak to him if you want, he's asking for you."
Howard shuffled nervously into the room. Vince smiled as he walked in. He had a drip in his arm, his hair was plastered to his sweaty forehead but his eyes were bright.
"Hey." he grinned.
"You." Howard said coldly, "are an idiot. What the hell were you thinking? Not eating and taking your medication. You knew what it would do to you."
"It didn't matter at the time." Vince sulked.
"Don't be ridiculous. It matters. It always matters. You matter."
Howard walked over and stroked the back of his hand down Vince's cheek.
"I love you Vince. Don't you dare do anything like this to me again! You're gonna eat all the right foods and get the proper amount of exercise. No more alcohol, ever and…"
"Awww, Howard! Don't be like this! I know you shagged my mum but you ain't my dad! I ain't gonna stop doing nothing. I'm fine!"
"Don't fuss." Vince whispered, "I've been like this since I was 7. I'm allowed to live my life. You just have to make me happy."
"I'll do that!" Howard promised.
Vince was finally being let out of hospital. Howard was there, laughing fondly as Vince scorned a young nurse for clumsily helping him out of the bed.
"Watch what you're doing! Stop touching my arse!"
"I'm not I just… sorry sir." she blushed.
In amongst the commotion of Vince trying to get dressed a loud voice cut in.
Howard span round to see Eleanor, posing by the doorway in a way that Howard supposed was meant to be seductive.
"Vincey, guess what! I'm engaged."
"That's a surprise." scorned Vince, batting the nurse away from him and going to lean on Howard for support.
"Do I know you?" Eleanor asked, holding her hand out to the older man..
"Howard, Howard Moon."
"That's a no then."
"Mum." frowned Vince "What are you doing here?"
"I'm saying goodbye."
"Yes, I'm going to Las Vegas to get married and then… not coming back. Gregg's going to be involved in bringing the funk back to America… it's all to do with a band called Parliament."
"Right. So I guess… I'll see you then."
"I'm glad you found someone that made you happy. Really." Howard put his arm around Vince's shoulders and squeezed.
"Me too." Eleanor agreed, smiling at Gregg, who in turn had his eyes fixed on Howard. The weird man licked his lips as though ready to pounce but, before he had opportunity, Eleanor was dragging him away.
Vince burst out laughing.
"What?" Howard scowled.
"I think you almost had your face chewed off by Old Greggory."
"Don't be ridiculous!"
"I can't believe she didn't remember me."
"Don't beat yourself up about it." Vince sighed, taking a long drag of his cigarette. "She never remembers anyone. She sent me a postcard the other day. As soon as she got to America, she dumped Gregg because she found him in bed with a conga-eel. She went off with some long-haired British comedian who's been doing some acting over there. And now she's in Australia or something…"
"Hmm. Should you be smoking? Aren't you still recovering?"
"I'll have a fruit salad later."
"Not the sweet!"
"Fine, not the sweet! I wish you'd stop fussing though."
"Well in a few minutes we'll have moved in together… this is a big step for me."
"Mmm." frowned Vince, looking across the road as a small group of neighbours gathered to get a glimpse of their new neighbours. "Look at that woman with the red bag. She wants me."
"Vincent! She's about 87."
"Doesn't mean she doesn't have… urges." smirked Vince, winking seductively at the woman who turned away in disgust.
"You're right, she's all over you."
"You don't seem very jealous."
"I trust you."
"I mean, even with my mum and my track record. You gotta be mad."
"People do mad things when they're in love."
Vince stared for a long moment, taking in every line of Howard's face. Saving it all to memory and then;
"Urgh! You're so goddamn soppy. Hey" he yelled at the men who were hauling the boxes inside, "You be careful with that box, it's got the TV in it."
Vince went to take another drag from his cigarette but it was pulled off him just at it reached his lips and thrown to the floor by Howard in some heroic half-attempt to give Vince another ten minutes of his life (or whatever the NHS had proclaimed the damage caused by a cigarette these days).
"Howaaaard!" he moaned. "You owe me a fag now."
But the older man wasn't listening; "What are they looking at?" he asked, still staring at the new neighbours.
"Oh, who cares?" groaned Vince. "Hey! D'you reckon they'll bring us cake?"
"Why would they do that?"
"Dunno." Vince shrugged, "I saw it on an American TV programme once."
"You're ridiculous… don't get another cigarette out!"
"Piss off!" Vince scowled, placing the offending fag between his lips and smirking defiantly as he lit it and blew the smoke in Howard's face, causing the older man to splutter.
Vince looked over to the crowd again, they seemed to be gossiping about something and Vince suddenly raised an eyebrow.
"Give us a kiss."
"Reckon that nosey lot are trying to figure out if we're gay or not. Reckon they'll piss of 'en."
"I'm not really a fan of public displays of affe-"
But the rest of his words were lost as Vince's tongue wrestled his own to silence. In the distance there was the sound of a wolf whistle but by the time they broke apart the crowd had gone.
"Told you." Vince beamed at Howard, as he took the keys from a man, who was holding them out to Howard. "Come on old man, lets go explore our house! Haha, our house! This is so weird!
Also, sorry if anyone knows anything about Wilson's disease, I don't I was just looking for a suitable disease for Vince to have and it was the only one that seemed to fit any of the things I needed.