Okay, so... after consideration, the original ending to this story was a crappy cop-out. I didn't know how to finish it, so I wrote that ending. However, I was quite unhappy with it, so I've been working on a new ending. It's a few chapters longer than the original. If anyone is interested and wants to see the original ending, just PM me. So here it is, the continuation of Can't Be Saved.
What the hell am I doing here?
The thought crossed Mihael's mind for the thousandth time since he had gotten off the bus near Matt's house. But no matter how many times he asked that particular question, there was still no easy answer. What was he doing here, lurking outside of Matt's house like some kind of sad stalker? He honestly had no clue.
But then again, he hadn't had a clue what was he doing for months. Control of his life had been taken away and given to… Matt? Mother? Some vague cosmic force? All he knew was that he hadn't been in control for a long time. Not since that stupid, stupid night when he had made the worst decision of his life. And the fucked up thing was, he couldn't even wish it hadn't happened. Because if Light hadn't died, if he hadn't made those stupid, stupid mistakes… then he never would have met Matt. And even now, with all the shit that had gone down between them, he still couldn't make himself feel sorry for knowing Matt.
"Hmm?" He was quickly brought back to the present by the sound of light, feminine voice.
"Why are you standing outside? Did you ring the doorbell? I didn't hear anything." It was Matt's mother. He had been so deep in thought he hadn't even noticed the front door opening. She was wearing jeans and t shirt, car keys in hand, and her hair was done up in a messy ponytail. And judging from her demeanor, Matt probably hadn't told her about what had happened between them. Mihael wasn't surprised. Matt didn't seem like the type to burden others with his problems.
"I just… came to return some clothes. You know, before he leaves and all." He held out a plastic bag that contained the clothes he had borrowed from Matt's closet what seemed like forever ago. It was as good an excuse as any.
"How thoughtful of you," she replied with a friendly smile. "Matt's not home at the moment but he should be along fairly soon. I have to go pick Misa up from school, but I can let you in if you'd like. You can wait for him inside."
"Oh, well I… are you sure?" Mihael was hesitant. He was already taking a huge risk today. Taking the bus to Matt's while Mother was at the dentist. It had been a split second decision and he hadn't thought it through at all. And while part of him- a huge part of him- wanted to see Matt, another, more vocal part of him knew it could only end badly.
"Of course." Matt's mother chuckled and went to open the front door. "You know, I haven't seen you over for dinner in awhile. Is school keeping you busy?"
"Something like that," Mihael murmured.
"Well, you've got to take a break sometimes and come and see us. I'm counting on you to make sure Matt still comes to see us once every few weeks for dinner once he moves!" She laughed lightly.
Mihael's brow furrowed. "Won't that be kind of difficult? Los Angeles is pretty far away?"
"Los Angeles?" Matt's mother tilted her head in confusion. "Matt's not moving to Los Angeles. He's moving up to those apartments off the highway. They're only about twenty minutes away."
"I… must have heard wrong."
She smiled and patted him on the back. "Don't worry. In my experience, most teenage boys only hear about seventy five percent of what's said to them. Matt's always had terribly selective hearing when it comes to chores, if I recall correctly." Mihael forced out a strained laugh. He felt sick. Why had Matt lied about moving?
"Make yourself at home," Matt's mother called as she headed back outside. "Matt should be home soon."
"Thanks," he murmured as the door closed, bathing him in the peaceful silence of the empty house. The inside of Mihael's head was anything but silent. Thoughts were running through a mile a minute, and there was a roaring in his ears. Why had Matt lied? It seemed like the more Mihael tried to repair his mistakes, the more his life fell down around him.
He made his way up the stairs and to Matt's room on autopilot, still consumed by his thoughts. The sight of Matt's once-familiar room stopped him as memories came rushing back. And in that moment he realized exactly what he had lost. Up until then, all he had been able to think about every night as he lay awake in his lonely room in Mother's house, was about Matt and how much he missed him. But now, standing in the same room where he finally began to be able to come to terms with who he was, he realized that what he missed even more was Matt's friendship. That closeness was something he had never known before Matt, so he had never realized what he was missing. But now that he had had a taste of it, he desperately wanted it back.
He sat heavily on the bed and put his face in his hands. When had it all gotten so thoroughly messed up? He could just feel tears beginning to prick the corner of his eyes when suddenly the front door slammed. He jumped up, panicked. All this time, and he still hadn't thought about exactly what he would say to Matt? What could he say?
Take me back. That's what he wanted to say. Take me back. Be my friend again. I don't care if you hate me for a hundred years. If I'm patient enough, the hate will go away and you'll be my best friend again.
But of course, he was too much of a coward to ever say what he really felt.
Footsteps on the stairs. Mihael swallowed a sudden lump in his throat and wiped nervous sweat from his hands on the front of his jeans. This was it. He was going to tell Matt how he really felt this time. But then, an unwelcome voice reached his ears from the hallway.
"So, you told him we're moving to L.A.?" It was Near.
Damnit. Damnit, damnit, damnit. Mihael had prepared himself mentally enough to talk to Matt, but Near threw a wrench in the proceedings. Mihael panicked and made a split second decision. Bounding to the closet door, he threw it open and threw himself inside, before closing it quickly; leaving it cracked only enough to hear what was going on inside the room. He groaned inwardly. Coward, he accused himself, sitting in the dark, hugging his knees to his chest. A hanger dug into his back uncomfortably. You're a fucking coward. And a ridiculous one too. Hiding in a freaking closet.
"Yeah." Matt's voice. Mihael felt his stomach leap into his throat at the sound.
"Seemed like the best idea at the time." There was a slightly creak of bedsprings as someone sat down.
"Don't you think there's been enough secrets around here for the time being?" Near's voice was cold, the way Mihael was used to hearing it. Nothing like the impassioned outburst the night he and Matt had kissed.
"Look, I don't want to talk about it anymore," Matt sounded tired. "I don't want to talk about him anymore. In a few weeks, we'll move and it'll be over."
Near's words were methodical. "Will it ever be over? I don't think you'll ever be done with him. Not like this." He didn't sound hurt, just observant.
Matt groaned loudly. "What the fuck, Near. I said it's done, and I meant it. Just… come here." The sound of a second person sitting on the bed, and then- Mihael squirmed unhappily- the unmistakable sound of two people kissing. Much to his relief, this only lasted for a few moments.
"I'm going home."
"What?" Matt sounded genuinely upset. "What is this- Are you still upset about… Look I said I was sorry. I've said it a hundred times. I'm sorry."
Near sighed. "I think we'll all sorry about the last few weeks, Matt. Forgiveness is a difficult thing. You, of all people, should know that." Mihael heard Matt exhale in frustration as the door clicked open and shut, but- he noticed- the redhead made no move to follow Near out.
In fact, Mihael was so busy thinking about what he had just overheard, that he didn't take notice of the approaching footsteps. A bright strip of light hit his eyes as the closet door opened, momentarily blinding him.
"Shit!" He flung up a hand in vain as the image of a half shocked, half angry Matt came swimming into view.
"What the fuck?" Matt took a deep breath, seeming to try and calm himself. "What the fuck are you doing in my closet, Mihael?" Irrationally, the use of his real name stung him. Just another reminder that their friendship was in ruins.
"I um.. I was-"
Matt cut him off immediately. "I don't care. Get up."
"Get up and leave my house. I thought I made it quite clear, I am done with you. Leave me alone."
Mihael stood, and tried to meet Matt's eyes, hoping to see something- anything-, but the once-familiar green eyes seemed to only hold anger. He had almost reached the bedroom door, when a thought struck him. He turned, eyes trained on the ground. "Can I… have a ride home? Mother doesn't know I've left, and I need to get home before she does and… it would just…"
Matt inhaled sharply through his nostrils. "Fine," he said through gritted teeth. "I will give you a ride home, and in exchange you will listen to me, and stay the fuck out of my life."
Matt's words stung, but at least Mihael's ploy to extend their time had worked, as pathetic as it was.
"So…" The red Camaro was halfway to his house by the time Mihael managed to work up the voice to say anything. His words hung in the air, Matt's stony silence their only answer. "You lied to me," he blurted out suddenly.
Matt didn't hesitate. "And you lied to me. For months."
Mihael swallowed. There was nothing he could really say to that.
"Look," Matt continued, as cars and houses zoomed by outside the car's open windows. "Just stop. Don't you get it? I don't want to be your friend anymore. You fucked that up."
"I didn't mean to."
"But somehow you still did."
"But what about forgiveness? You're upset that Near still hasn't forgiven you for kissing me. The least you could do is not be such a fucking hypocrite."
Matt laughed, but it was cold and calculated. "Really? You think listening in on my conversations and turning them back on me is the way back into my heart? You're a real piece of work, Mihael. I mean, seriously-"
"Shit." Mihael interrupted Matt's tirade as they turned down his street and his house slid into view in the windshield. It was Mother. As Matt slid his Camaro next to the curb, Mother was climbing out of her own car. Mihael didn't even have to look; he could feel her anger from where he sat.
"Shit," he said, quieter this time. It was either sit in the car and face Matt's anger, or go outside and face Mother's. Sadly, he knew which one would probably hurt less. "Thanks for the ride," he said as he unbuckled his seatbelt and opened the passenger door.
"Mihael!" Mother's angry voice greeted him as soon as he stepped out of the car. Her normally pretty face was red with indignation. "What have you been doing?! We had an agreement. You were never to see this… degenerate again!" She pointed an accusatory finger at Matt's open window. Mihael closed his eyes in resignation. He wished Matt would just hurry up and drive away. At least he could be spared the humiliation of being screamed at in front of him. But then to Mihael's surpise…
"Excuse me?" Matt sounded more indignant than Mihael had ever heard him. Mihael's eyes snapped open as he heard the click of the car door opening. Matt stepped out onto the lawn and approached Mother. "Degenerate?"
"You," Mother seemed to momentarily forget Mihael and focused her energies on Matt instead. "You are what's wrong with my son. You and your filthy lifestyle."
"Me?" Matt's eyes blazed dangerously. "Me? Listen up lady, there is absolutely nothing wrong with me. I'm gay. It's who I am. It's not a 'filthy lifestyle'. And as for your son? Yeah, there's a lot wrong with him, but I'm not it. And neither is being gay. In fact," Matt seemed to be picking up steam and all Mihael could do was watch in a strange mix of terror and fascination, "I think what's wrong with him is you. You and your archaic values and gender expectations. Just because someone doesn't fit into life the way you think they should, they're automatically disgusting and worthless? That's bullshit and I have spent too much of my life dealing with it to have to hear from someone who doesn't even know me."
Mother seemed to have lost her words for a moment. Bu that was okay, it seemed Matt's little tirade was over.
"Come on." Matt gestured to the car.
"Huh?" Mihael said in confusion.
"Get in the car, Mello. Let's go. I wouldn't wish this kind of bigotry on my worst enemy." Matt gave Mother a last scathing look and ducked behind the wheel of the car. Mihael moved on autopilot, shock blanketing his senses. Only one thought penetrated his mind as he slid back into the passenger seat, leaving an astonished Mother on the front lawn.
Mello. He called me Mello.
Reviews? I've been away for awhile and I'm afraid my writing has gotten a bit rusty.