The Untold Want
As Justin walked towards the door, Brian realized that kissing him again had been his downfall.
Because it wasn't just a kiss, it was a return, a reunion, a sealing of fates.
A life changing, catafuckingclysmic event.
And he couldn't change it now, wouldn't change it if he had the chance to.
When Justin was just steps from the door, Brian felt his skin prickle, and knew that he wasn't going to let Justin walk out again.
And it was all because of that fucking kiss.
Before it he would have been able to go on living his life without Justin. It would have been annoying, but he would have carried on and, eventually, their relationship that wasn't a relationship would have become a memory, a funny anecdote for him and his friends to laugh about over breakfast. Yes, Justin had left him for that fucking violin playing twat, but he had been dealing with it just fine, thank you very much.
That kiss, though, that reminder of what was no longer his, had made the loss unbearable.
When Brian had come stumbling home from Babylon the previous night, the loft had seemed abandoned. It was like walking in and discovering Justin had moved out all over again. There was no longer the presence of a life being lived there. The open space around him seemed incredibly vast, and the stylish décor was too cold for him to find comfort in. All of his beautiful things had turned ugly.
Everything in his apartment appeared to be mocking him. The coffee table free of used dishes and soda cans, the dining table that was no longer covered in sketches, the empty refrigerator, the single toothbrush in the bathroom, the lack of sneakers kicked off on the floor, even the water marks on top of the dresser, faint reminders of the glasses of water Justin used to sit upon it before bed, demanded that he finally pay attention to what he had lost.
It was more than he had thought it was.
He had sat on the edge of his bed drinking Beam and smoking cigarettes as if he would never be able to consume them again. He was sweating and tired and angry and sad and he had no one to turn to. He was alone and he was lonely and that was really fucking aggravating. The bottle in his hand was the only positive thing in his life.
His lungs felt tired and strained but he continued to smoke, each drag burning sharply at his insides. His throat was beginning to tighten up in an involuntary effort to keep the smoke out. He imagined that he could feel tumors forming inside him, a sickness spreading that he would eventually succumb to. As he stubbed out the cigarette, he felt in his bones that he would die from this habit.
He was, after all, just like his father.
Taking the bottle with him, he began roaming the loft like a lost child, turning suddenly from one direction before heading in the next, picking up objects as he came across them. As he held them he wondered what their value really was, if he would miss them if they suddenly disappeared.
Eventually, he found himself pulling out the portrait Justin had drawn of him way back when. He held it stretched out in front of him and stared at it. It was nothing more than a beautiful mirage etched on paper or, quite possibly, a blatant lie. He had never been the man they had all thought he was. But had he ever, even for just a moment, been who Justin had wanted?
Brian decided the answer was no. The man in the portrait had never existed at all. He was a myth, grown to heroic proportions in the eyes of a love-struck boy.
He clumsily hurled the portrait and cursed it when it shattered on the floor. For a moment he felt a sense of triumph, as if he had finally broken free from a trap he had been caught in for years.
And then there was nothing but pain and remorse and a sense that he had lost more than he could ever have possibly gained in a lifetime. He came to his knees as the reality of the situation finally hit him and, for the first time since the bashing, he cried over Justin.
Or maybe he was crying over both of them; over how fucked up his life was, over how fucked up Justin's life had become since they'd met. Or maybe he was crying because he was drunk and high. It didn't matter, it was nauseating all the same.
The tears became hot and angry and he fought to keep down the bile that threatened to rise in his throat. He needed to brush his teeth, the taste of alcohol and cigarettes were only encouraging his need to vomit. He took several deep breaths and tried to calm down. He was already a fool for crying. Puking would only humiliate him further. He refused to allow that.
He inhaled and exhaled the way Lindsay had learned while she was pregnant. He remembered making fun of the heavy breathing, and thought she would be deeply pleased to see him reduced to this. But it was helping, his head was clearing and his pulse was beginning to slow.
He kept breathing steadily until sleep overtook him.
When he came to the next day, his mouth was thick with the taste of stale cigarettes and his head was throbbing. Rising, he noticed the broken glass and a small puddle of Beam on the hardwood floor. It was not one of his finer mornings.
He showered and then tried to quiet his head with coffee. About half way through the cup, an image flashed in his mind of Justin's face as he had walked away. With the clarity of sobriety he was able to remember a very important fact. Justin had wanted to come home with him. He felt infinitely better.
But when Justin had showed up on his doorstep a couple of hours ago, he was a bit taken aback. He'd thought it would have taken a little longer. The sight of the duffle bag hanging off Justin's shoulder didn't help the situation either. That thing meant trouble, it always had. Still he hadn't meant to antagonize the kid. It's just that after Justin fell asleep, he'd had a lot of time to think about their situation.
And it had kind of pissed him off when he began to understand that Justin had left Ethan over one fucking kiss.
Because what did that say about Justin?
He had always been too emotional, too captivated by ideas of what romance and love were supposed to be. Once he had met the violinist, Brian had gone from being God to being nothing in what felt like the blink of an eye. He guessed that Ethan had just taken a similar plunge. It almost made him feel for him.
It definitely made the kid sleeping on his couch seem like less of a prize.
By the time Justin had woken up, Brian had already decided that he had been fooling himself into thinking he had missed him. If he wanted to fuck, Brian was fine with that, but he was drawing the line this time. There wasn't going to be any bullshit relationship talk.
Of course that was exactly where the conversation had gone. He was feeling pretty confident about his deflection skills when the little shit had broken out the big guns and declared his love.
Well, Brian had thought, what the fuck was that worth? Yesterday morning Justin had been in love with someone else. He was capricious, and not to be trusted. Brian wanted to get rid of him once and for all.
But when Justin had picked his bag up, there was only one thought running through Brian's mind, 'What the fuck am I doing?'
He eyed Justin as he took his first steps towards the door, waiting for him to turn around. When that didn't happen it dawned on him that Justin was actually serious about leaving. If he wanted Justin to stay, he was going to have to stop him.
If they hadn't kissed the night before he wouldn't have thought twice about letting him go. But it had happened and now everything was different.
He took ten angry strides, reached out, and stopped Justin from leaving.
When Justin turned to look at him, Brian realized he had no fucking clue what to do next.
They began speaking again, but the words made no sense. Justin wanted to go to a hotel, but Brian couldn't let that happen. If Justin walked out the door it was all over.
Traitorous words ran through his mind over and over, 'Tell him to stay. Just tell him to stay.'
He was opening his mouth when Justin asked for a loan and then tapped his knuckles against Brian's stomach. It was almost too mundane a gesture to be so full of meaning, but he was pretty sure Justin was throwing him a life raft.
Justin stepped closer to Brian. "Guess you're stuck with me then," he said as he let his bag drop from his arm to the hardwood floor.
Brian exhaled as the bag fell, if the bag was staying so was its bearer.
He rolled his eyes towards the ceiling. "Well aren't I just the luckiest fag in Pittsburgh."
Justin looked up at him and Brian smiled a little before covering his mouth with his hand and turning away. He didn't want Justin to think that this meant anything. He didn't know how to fix or save them. He was unsure of himself, unsure of the people they had become while apart. It was annoying and unfamiliar.
He hated feeling so fucking unbalanced. He walked to the kitchen counter and grabbed a cigarette from an open pack. It was the last one, the wish cigarette. He sat on the end stool, lit up, inhaled deeply, and felt the sharp sting in his lungs. He swung his body around so he could look back at Justin.
"Where's your computer?" he asked, surprised as the words tumbled out. He guessed that Justin was surprised too, as it took him a moment to answer.
"It's still at Ethan's. I couldn't carry it," he said with a shrug.
Brian nodded. Still, the fucking fiddler was probably out at that moment pawning it off for a new bow. Integrity tended to fly out the window when someone's heart was breaking. And Brian was sure that Ethan's had broken pretty badly.
"We'll take care of that tomorrow," Brian said.
Justin rolled his eyes a little. "It's fine Brian. He's not going to smash it up or anything."
"What else is left there?"
"School stuff mostly, clothes, a couple of CD's and some DVD's. Nothing major."
"We'll get some boxes in the morning and then we'll go get the rest."
"You don't have to help me."
Brian inhaled another drag and thought for a moment. He didn't have to, but there was no way in hell he was letting Justin go alone.
"It's not a problem."
Justin looked nervous now. His hands were stuffed into his pockets and Brian watched the slow shuffle of Justin's foot as it brushed back and forth over the floor.
"I'll be good," Brian offered with a wry grin.
Justin looked over at him and smiled a little. "I know," he said as he walked towards him. He reached out his hand and Brian passed him the cigarette.
Justin took a long drag and looked down at the floor before he began speaking. "I wasn't happy there Brian. I never really loved him."
The words came out in puffs of smoke that drifted up into the air before finally dissipating.
Brian pursed his lips, "You weren't happy here either, though."
Justin's head popped up at that. "Sometimes I was. Sometimes you made me really happy."
Brian wondered why that was enough for Justin to come back to. He noticed that Justin was staring at him, trying to read him. He'd been pretty good at that once.
He reached for the cigarette and picked up a small glass ashtray as he rose from the stool. "Sometimes isn't a whole hell of a lot," Brian said quietly. "What makes you think it would be any different?"
Justin handed him the cigarette. "I'm not the same person I was back then. I know what I want now."
Brian took a drag, letting the burn take him for a moment. He exhaled and slowly walked over to the window. It was late, but there were lights on in most of the windows across the street. The city was still awake, cars kept rolling down the street, a handful of people were walking on the sidewalk, and somewhere off in the distance a siren screamed out its warning. It didn't feel right that so much was going on out there, it should have been quieter. He wanted the ground to open up and swallow all of the people, he wanted the cars to stop coming. Nothing outside acknowledged what was happening here. None of those assholes seemed to understand that they should have been silent, waiting breathlessly to see what would happen. He guessed that out there the two of them didn't really matter. But in here, in here they were the whole fucking world.
He shifted his focus so he could observe Justin's reflection in the glass. He had moved from the counter to just behind the couch. Brian hadn't even been aware of the footsteps. "What about what I want?" he asked.
Justin smiled a little. "I know what to expect from you Brian and I know what you expect from me. I'm not coming into this blind."
For some reason the answer stung. Brian wasn't about to contradict him though.
"Oh," was all he could muster.
Justin was seeking his eyes in the window, but Brian dropped his gaze.
"It's enough Brian. For me it's enough."
Brian stubbed out the cigarette butt, watching as the ashes glowed brighter just before they turned black. He rested the ashtray on top of the end table beside him and wiped his hands on his sweatpants as he turned towards Justin.
"I'm not sure it really is," he said with a slight shrug.
He saw Justin's body tense as the words reached him.
Justin took a tentative step towards him. "Brian," he began, his mouth hanging slightly open as if he could honestly argue the point.
Brian swallowed hard and then spoke before he lost his courage, "I want you to promise me something." The words felt strange in his mouth, and his stomach fluttered at the hypocrisy.
Justin's eyes narrowed. "What?" he asked.
How could he ask this without embarrassing himself? He thought that maybe he should just let it go. His mouth was hanging open and he was sure that he looked like an ass. Justin was staring at him warily and his mind reeled to find something else Justin could promise him. There was nothing else though, and truth be told, he wanted him to do this. He wanted Justin to give his word and stick to it. Hell, Justin would probably be thrilled that he asked him to. He'd take it as a sign that Brian had missed him. He'd think that Brian thought that they meant something, which, he begrudgingly admitted to himself, he sort of did. He swallowed his pride and went for it. "You won't do that lying shit again. Not ever."
Justin looked pained for a moment, but then his face softened and his eyes opened up.
"I promise," he whispered.
Brian gently nodded but neither of them moved from where they stood.
Justin's voice was tentative when he finally spoke, "Um, Brian?"
"Are we okay now? 'Cause if we are, you should really fuck me."
Brian teasingly raised one eyebrow. "Not even back for a minute and already you're telling me what to do."
"Well we don't have to fuck if you don't wan-"
"Get your ass in that bed Sunshine."
The room was lowly lit by the blue lights over the bed, and Brian watched as Justin slowly walked ahead of him, pulling his clothing off as he went.
A shirt flew back and smacked him in the chest, and Brian felt a surprising thrill run through him, as if Justin were something forbidden he had gained access to.
Justin was smiling as he pulled off his jeans and underwear. He kicked his ankles free before crawling onto the mattress and flipping himself onto his back. Brian stood at the foot of the bed and smiled, Justin was hard and ready for him.
He pulled his sweats off and slid slowly on top of him, causing a moan to escape from Justin's mouth.
Justin's hands trailed up his sides, lightly tickling as they brushed up and down. Brian let his fingers wind through blond hair and then touched his forehead to Justin's.
Justin smiled, and Brian felt a shiver run through the body beneath him. He pulled his head up and smiled too.
Justin brought his hand up to Brian's face and traced a finger across Brian's mouth as he whispered, "Hey."
Tugging lightly on a chunk of hair, Brian continued. "Your hair got long."
Justin laughed a little at that. "I was too poor to get a hair cut."
Brian smiled. "I like it," he said as he slowly lowered his mouth to Justin's.
His lips were gentle, lightly brushing against Justin's before becoming more demanding. His tongue suddenly raced for entry and darted into the space it had been denied for so long. Justin was reaching up to meet him, his mouth open and his hands pulling Brian's head more firmly against him. The kiss was sloppy and frantic, and Brian found he didn't really give a shit about technique at the moment.
Brian pulled his mouth away and began to litter kisses down Justin's throat. He paused at his clavicle, and licked at the indentation before trailing a path to Justin's nipple. His tongue swirled around it slowly before he quickly sucked it into his mouth and lightly bit down. After a moment, he let the nipple slip from between his teeth and blew cool air over it. Justin arched his back and gasped Brian's name as his fingers tangled into dark hair. At the sound, Brian felt a surge of possessiveness course through him. He wanted to erase the memory of Ethan from Justin's body, he wanted to erase the memory of Ethan from both of their minds. There was no doubt that he could do one more easily than the other.
He let his fingers wander over Justin's stomach, as he kissed and licked his way up Justin's chest. When his lips reached the spot where Justin's shoulder sloped up into his neck, Brian sucked the skin into his mouth, his teeth grazing the flesh as it rested between his lips. He wanted to make a mark, he wanted Ethan to see it in the morning and know that he had been nothing more than a stand in. He wanted him to fully understand that Justin had come back to where he belonged.
Justin's hands pushed his head back a bit and Brian released the flesh from his mouth. He watched as a deep purple mark spread out over pale skin, and he felt ashamed that he had marred it, ashamed that he had wanted to prove anything to anyone. His finger traced the edges as Justin whispered, "It's okay, Brian."
Brian leaned down and kissed the spot, before he brought his lips back to Justin's. His hand was still busy as it wandered lower and lower on Justin's torso. His fingers dipped just below Justin's belly button, lightly brushing over fair hair before skimming back up. Brian felt a sense of power as Justin started murmuring pleas against his mouth for him to go further.
At the moment though, Brian just wanted to keep touching him. Justin was as warm and smooth and perfect as he had always been but it seemed extraordinary to Brian that that was actually true. He was relieved that he hadn't built Justin up in his mind while they were apart. Justin was still Justin. His memory hadn't exaggerated anything at all. He pulled his mouth away and began to lift himself up to a sitting position. Justin's hands slipped from Brian's shoulders and his fingernails trailed down Brian's chest before they finally rested on his own stomach. Brian looked down at Justin and noted his swollen mouth and heavy lidded eyes. Justin was aroused but it wasn't enough. He wanted him panting and begging for him, he wanted him raw and desperate.
Justin's hand reached out and brushed over Brian's inner thigh before slowly skimming over to his dick. Brian inhaled sharply when pale fingers wrapped firmly around him and began pumping slowly.
It was too much, Brian would be the desperate one if Justin kept going. He reached down and stilled Justin's hand. Grasping one slender wrist he reached for the other and pulled both of them up over Justin's head as he pressed his chest down towards Justin's.
When he had settled, Justin nodded his chin up and kissed Brian gently. Brian released Justin's wrists and twined their fingers together.
Something was tugging at Brian's heart. It was a little like joy. If he didn't know better he would almost say he was giddy.
Justin was wantonly grinding against him, his legs had wrapped themselves around Brian, trapping him in place.
Justin bit at his lips and then whispered, "Fuck me Brian."
Brian couldn't imagine hearing a better idea again in his life. He untangled himself from Justin as he reached out to his nightstand and grabbed a condom. Justin snatched it from his fingers, tore off the wrapper, and slowly slid it over Brian's cock. Brian shivered at the touch and quickly moved to position himself between Justin's parted legs. Looking down at Justin for a quick moment, Brian took pleasure in the sight of the body before him. Justin lifted his legs, resting his calves against Brian's shoulders. For the millionth time in his life, Brian wondered how the hell the kid was so flexible, and then he wasn't thinking anything at all as he slowly sank into Justin.
It was better than he had remembered. He sought Justin's mouth as he kept the rest of his body still. It felt so good to be inside him, Brian wondered if he had ever realized how amazing it really was before he had lost him. Justin was running his hands over Brian's arms as he whispered Brian's name between kisses. Brian clasped his wrists again and yanked them over Justin's head as he thrust deeply inside him. He swallowed Justin's sudden cry and felt teeth biting into his lower lip as Justin brought his hips up to meet his next stroke. Brian felt like he had never been so perfect before and that Justin had never been as incredible as he was right then. They were perfectly matched here, perfectly suited in every way.
Justin pulled his lips away from Brian's and his neck arched back as a shout rang from his mouth. Justin was struggling to bring his arms down but Brian held them firmly. He pushed them together until he was able to hold both of Justin's hands under one of his own. He felt Justin try to escape his grasp and he whispered, "Don't." When Justin nodded and relaxed his arms, Brian trailed his free hand down the side of Justin's face and neck, before slipping down the center of Justin's body and finally lightly grazing over Justin's cock. His thumb circled the head, before he slowly started jerking Justin off. Justin was breathing heavily and his body was becoming slick with sweat. He arched into Brian's hand and gave in to the sensation. Brian felt Justin's body shake, and he gripped Justin's hands tighter as they began to resist him once again. He thrust hard and felt Justin's cum against his body.
When Justin stilled, Brian began thrusting more erratically, his hand still holding Justin's in place. Justin looked up at Brian and smirked as Brian felt muscles squeezing tightly around his dick. He came much sooner than he had planned to.
He released Justin's hands and collapsed against him. He felt hot air puffing against his neck as Justin's arms and legs wrapped around him. It felt so incredibly real and solid that the panic he felt was unexpected. Brian squeezed his eyes shut and took a deep breath. When he opened them again, Justin was still there. This time he hadn't imagined it.
Relief ran through him as he pressed his lips to Justin's forehead. He slowly rolled out of the embrace and sat up. The air felt cold against his chest as he took the condom off and tossed it to the waste basket. He reached for the duvet, pulling it about half way up before he pulled his legs under it. Lying back, he waited for Justin to move closer. Justin rolled towards him and rested his head on top of Brian's chest, his arm was bent and his fingers began to stroke lightly over Brian's heart. Brian arranged the duvet around them before placing his arms around Justin.
They were quiet for a long time.
Brian couldn't stop thinking about how long it had been since they'd last been like this. He found himself regretting the amount of time they had spent apart.
If he had been a man and told Justin he hadn't wanted him to go, the last six months could have been so very different. Justin wouldn't have gone if Brian had just been honest. Things would have to change if he didn't want to regret anything else.
He spoke quietly, but quickly. "I noticed."
"Noticed what?" Justin asked with a yawn.
He thought Justin would remember, he didn't think he'd have to explain. He wouldn't have said anything at all if there was going to be a fucking discussion about it.
He continued, hoping that it would be enough. "I noticed you weren't here."
"How very perceptive of you."
"No, I mean…you asked if…ah fuck it." He wasn't cut out for this shit, he hated this shit.
Justin's hand stilled as he lifted his head up to look at him. Brian saw that he looked sleepy and sated and honestly confused. He leaned in and kissed him gently, but Justin didn't want to be distracted.
"What did you mean, Brian?"
Brian closed his eyes and just spoke. "I meant that I missed you."
Justin was quiet.
"Only a little though," Brian tacked on before opening his eyes again.
Justin nodded as he somewhat mockingly said, "Of course." Then he began to quietly laugh. "You're such an asshole," he whispered.
Brian smiled at him. "I know," he whispered back.
Justin laughed a little harder before he rested his head back down and placed a light kiss on Brian's chest.
Brian kissed the top of Justin's head in return and drifted off to sleep.