Title: Chase Down All My Demons
Rating: M (Just a precaution, for the dream-rape scene at the beginning and the mentions of it)
Word Count: 4,850 (Summary, warning, A/N, disclaimer, etc. not included.)
Summary: Getting better wasn't going to be easy, Julian knew. But he also knew the things worth living for never were.
Warnings: Mentions of rape, kidnapping, and assault. Vague description of rape. Tense/POV switching when going from dream to reality.
Author's notes: Another Jogan story, of course. I love writing these two. I'm planning for this to be a three-part thing (the second part will just be a small fic already underway called Progress and the other will focus on the cruise. Both will probably be sprinkled in smut). Someone asked for more cuteness with the daddies and their boys from A Day in the Life, so I'm working on two little side ficlets: Small Moments: John Logan Wright IV and Small Moments: Felix Antoine. I can't say when they'll be done, but I'm working on it. I'm also plotting out a second full-blown story set in the A Day in the Life verse. Hopefully they'll all come together. The same thing applies for this one as did for the other one when it comes to mistakes: if you notice them, tell me, and I'll fix them, especially unintentional tense changes because I'm so used to writing in the present tense that I wouldn't be surprised if I slipped up. Whether you inform me in a review or a PM doesn't matter. I hope you enjoy. Reviews are lovely and make me want to write more (I'll write more whether you review or not, though).
Disclaimer: The work which I base my fanfic is a fanfic from Glee, and I don't own that. Nor do I own Logan, or Julian. Or any other characters mentioned. They belong to the wonderful Miss CP Coulter, author of Dalton. Also, titled is from Fuckin' Perfect by Pink.
"Let me go!" I shout, muffled by my face being shoved into a pillow.
"Never. You're mine, Julian," he tells me, pinning my wrists against the mattress.
"Why? Because I'm not him? Is that it? Is it because I'm not Logan?" That stings more than it should.
"Please, don't do this. If you love me—" I whimper pathetically.
"Don't even try it, Julian. I love you, and that's why I'm doing this. He doesn't deserve you." He releases one of my hands for a moment. A grunt follows. And after that, an intense burning.
"Ow! Stop! I—it hurts!" And it does. Worse than anything I've ever felt before. I keep trying to fight back, keep trying to get him to stop, but he just hits the back of my head hard enough that I see spots.
"It always does. You'll get used to it. It'd hurt less if you stop struggling." I do my best not to cry, but it doesn't work. Tears still pour down my cheeks. This is even more degrading than when he shoved me to my knees and forced me to open my mouth. And least then I wasn't in complete agony. I don't care what happens afterwards anymore. I don't care if he kills me. I hope he does. Anything's better than this. Oh, I just want this to be over.
"You feel so good, you know that, Julian? So tight—if I didn't know better, I'd say you were a virgin." He punctuates his words with a harsh thrust, and I can't help but scream. I'm not a virgin, not in the technical sense, but…I've never been on bottom before. I've never trusted anyone enough to be. Well…there's one person but…. I think he senses what I'm thinking because I can feel his grin against my shoulder where he buried his face. "I am your first time, aren't I? Like this, anyway. That just makes it so much better. Now you'll never forget me, Julian. Never."
Julian woke up in a cold sweat, tears pricking the corners of his eyes.
"It's just a dream," he whispered to himself. "It was just a dream. He—he can't hurt you anymore. He's locked up. For good. And you'll never have to see him again." He always felt stupid for talking out loud to himself, but it was something his therapist, Dr. Hendricks, told him would help manage his feelings when he was one bad thought away from doing something incredibly stupid.
He sat up, the blanket clenched tightly in his fists. Now for the second part of his coping mechanism: How could the dream be taken in a nonnegative (not necessarily positive) manner?
It's been a really long time since I've had a nightmare that bad. I'm getting better.
And the third and final part. Think of all the good things. All the things that made life worth living. His family. His friends. His career. Logan.
Logan. Julian sighed softly. Even just his boyfriend's name was enough to bring Julian down off the ledge of mental instability dreams like that constantly left him teetering on.
Still, it'd been over eight months since he had kidnapped, raped, and beaten the living hell out of Julian. Left him naked in an alley to die of hypothermia. Completely stripped Julian of every last bit of dignity he had. And Julian was still having nightmares about it.
Julian sucked in a deep breath as the mental wound he'd been trying to close for the eight months since then began to throb, making him physically nauseous. Don't think about that. Think soothing thoughts. Think about Logan more. Today's our six-month anniversary.
Six months. They'd really been together for six months. Logan had been there for Julian from the moment he'd been found and rushed off to the hospital, of course, but they'd officially started dating a little past two months after. Logan had refused to push Julian into a relationship, and Julian wasn't going to screw up his only potential chance at being with Logan by jumping in too quickly. But after some long conversations, here they were. Together, even when people had sworn they wouldn't make it this long.
Six months of dates, soft kisses, whispered declarations of how much they loved each other, and Logan still didn't know what Julian really had nightmares about. He'd assumed—and Julian never bothered telling him otherwise—Julian's nightmares all revolved around when he assaulted him, broke his arm, and smashed his head against the wall. That or his dreams were about when he had been kidnapped, shoved into a van without any warning and then knocked unconscious.
Six months, and Logan still had no idea that Julian had been raped.
Not that Julian didn't want to tell him. Logan had every right to know why Julian was having a hard time barely making it past second base. But Julian was scared. Scared about how Logan was going to react, what he was going to say. What he was going to think. He'd more than likely be mad that Julian had kept it from him for so long, but how could you just bring something like that up? Talk about the weather and then toss in a quick, "Oh, forgot to mention this before, but not only did my psycho stalker beat the shit out of me, he raped me too. Crazy, huh?"
Julian could tell the lack of intimacy was really getting to Logan. Every time he'd try to slide his hands underneath Julian's shirt, or into his pants, Julian would immediately tense up and make some excuse to put an end to it. He had homework. He thought he heard Derek knocking. He had to feed Sonic. And each time Logan patiently endured it, pulling back and faking a smile. But Julian knew that he was starting to worry as well as getting sexually frustrated.
But tonight was going to be different. It was their six-month anniversary, and they were going to go all the way. He wasn't going to run Julian life's or ruin his relationship. Like Dr. Hendricks always said, Julian was in control. And if Julian wanted to have sex with his boyfriend, then dammit, Julian was going to have sex with his boyfriend. Maybe then he wouldn't have to tell Logan because it wouldn't matter. Sure, he might say something down the road, but he wouldn't have to now. Logan would keep looking at him with those pale green eyes that told of unspoken admiration for how much Julian had gone through—and was still going through. Those pale green eyes that said so much of what Logan couldn't put into words.
Logan deserved this. He'd put up with Julian's crazy for this long, supported Julian when he was at rock bottom, and asked for nothing in return. Tonight, Logan was finally going to get something back, and with any luck, Julian would too.
The night was set up perfectly. Since neither of them really knew how to cook all that well (Actually Julian could. Logan was the one who was culinarily inept, but Julian really didn't feel like making anything), they settled for ordering from Panda Express, splitting an order of eggrolls while Julian had Beijing beef and Logan completely devoured two bowls of barbequed pork.
"Your appetite worries me sometimes," Julian said, shaking his head as Logan scraped the last bit of pork into his mouth.
"I'm still a growing boy, you know," Logan told him with a wink. Julian rolled his eyes.
"You're incorrigible sometimes."
"I'm shocked you know that big of a word, let alone how to use it properly in a sentence."
"Funny, Wright. Absolutely hilarious."
"I thought so," Logan smirked. Julian opened his mouth to make some witty retort when Logan pressed a finger over his mouth. "Shh. Enough insulting. I got you something."
"I thought we agreed on no presents—"
"I know, I know, but I was goofing off on facebook, and an ad for it popped up, and I knew I just had to get it for you." Logan reached into the pocket of the coat he draped over the back of Julian's couch. "You have to promise not to make fun of me, okay? It's a little…mushy."
"Mushy? Be still my beating heart!" Julian said dramatically, clutching at his chest. Logan just glowered at him before tossing a box unceremoniously in Julian's general direction, but completely missed his intended target.
"No wonder you're not in any sports. You'd be terrible with coordination like that."
"Just shut up and open it." Julian pulled a face, but began to comply nonetheless. The box was wrapped in bright, shiny green paper and a red bow on top.
"Christmas isn't for a few months, dear—"
"Seriously, Jules. Open it."
"I'm calling your bluff, Wright."
"Dammit, Julian, open the present before I do it for you!"
"Okay, okay! Jeez. Calm down," Julian murmured, plucking the bow carefully and then, with a smirk, slowly dragging his finger beneath the folds of the paper.
"Now you're just being mean."
"That's what you get for calling me dumb." Finally, all of the wrapping was off, and all that remained was a longish, black box. "I'm going to be hella pissed if it's some girly necklace, Logan, I hope you know that—" Actually, he was lying. He was flattered to be getting anything at all from Logan, and he felt a little guilty for not getting Logan something anyway.
"It's not jewelry, I promise," Logan stared anxiously at him, though only Julian and a select other few would have seen it as anything other than bored arrogance.
Julian slid the lid off the top, and inside wasn't jewelry.
It was a ticket. Two tickets actually. For a Royal Caribbean International Cruise. To the Caribbean, over Winter Break.
"Logan—you can't be serious."
"I am. Pretty much everything's set up. Or it will be, if you say yes. I can still refund it if you say no."
"I—these had to have cost an obscene amount."
"Of course they did. I got the Grand Suite and everything."
"That has to be over five thousand dollars alone."
"So? Michelle's giving me the money for it and whatever other money we'll need, since my dad won't, and all I have to do to pay her back is do well in school, take my meds, and try to argue with my dad as little as possible. Along with a few other harmless things." When Julian gave him a look that screamed 'There's no way in hell I'm letting you do this,' Logan continued, "Julian, you're just so stressed. I'm starting to worry. You need some time to get away from everything around here, and you've told me how much you love the Caribbean. I guess I thought it'd be nice to go off for a week. Just the two of us."
"It's okay, Jules. I get it. I'm rushing things." Logan sighed. "I'm not trying—I just saw it and thought you'd like it. I—" Julian cut Logan off with a quick but meaningful kiss.
"No one's ever gotten me anything like this. Ever," Julian said. "Thank you. And I'd love to go." Logan smiled broadly before Julian pulled him in for a warm, seemingly harmless kiss. But soon enough, Julian's fingers wound up threaded in Logan's hair and Logan was guiding him to lie on the couch, hands resting firmly on Julian's sides. The brunette made a small noise in the back of his throat, and Logan just lost it, hands beginning to trail all over the clothed-body beneath him until they came to the bottom of Julian's shirt. He was waiting, Julian knew. Waiting to see what Julian would do. If he tensed, Logan would back off and not say another word. If not, then they might actually get somewhere. Julian willed himself to stay relaxed, distracting himself by kissing at Logan's neck, right where his pulse throbbed boldly and steadily.
It's just Logan. Just Logan. And he loves me. So much, and he should get more for it than blue balls. Julian continued repeating this over and over in his head as one of Logan's hands finally slipped under his shirt, exploring the prominent, but not overly so, muscles of Julian's stomach and chest.
To Julian's utter satisfaction, he remained completely calm and in control. Well, calm anyway. There was no way he could consider what he did next as being in control because it was pure instinct that drove him to pull Logan even tighter against him, arching up so Logan could feel exactly what this did to him and he could feel what it was doing to Logan. And it was doing very interesting things to Logan, if the way he moaned and pressed Julian even further into the couch was any indication.
"God damn, Jules." Logan let out a breathy laugh. "I was starting to think you'd taken a vow of celibacy or something."
"Yeah, right," Julian whispered as Logan brought his mouth to meet his. "You think I'd be able to remain celibate for any prolonged period of time?"
"I was hoping the old Julian's sexual prowess would come back," Logan panted against Julian's lips. "I've been waiting to touch you like this for months."
"I would like you to stop moving your lips for talking purposes and start using them for other, more urgent reasons," Julian told him and nipped lightly at blond's lip.
"Fuck," Logan growled, lower and sexier than anything Julian had heard come out of his mouth. "I'm never going to let you go, Julian. Never."
It was suddenly like the bottom had dropped out of everything, and he was stuck in free fall. And he wasn't sure if he was ever going to stop.
Julian sat on the bathroom floor with his face buried into his knees. Dr. Hendricks had said he needed to be careful when it came to how he interacted with others—certain acts, touches, or even phrases would be enough to cause flashbacks. That along with the nightmares, his kneejerk physical reactions—the heart pounding, the sweating palms, the intense urge to cry for no reason—and the suicidal thinking that sometimes plagued him were all a part of his post-traumatic stress. All it had taken was that one word and Julian was back there, pinned beneath him and completely helpless to stop it.
He remembered a voice screaming—"Let me go! Don't! I don't want it! Stop!"—but didn't want to believe it was his. It didn't sound like him. It sounded like some broken child, fighting to escape some monster trapping him in his dream. But it had to have been his because Logan jumped back almost immediately, eyes wide with hurt and confusion and saying, almost accusingly, "Julian?"
Julian had stopped then, stopped crying out, completely horrified by what had just erupted from his mouth. It had been Logan—the boy who took care of him every time he got sick from the weakened immune system being left in that cold alley for so long had done. The boy who held his hand at several of his follow up doctor's appointments, to see how he was doing and if everything was healing/had healed properly. The boy who loved him so much and told him so every day. He'd screamed all those horrible things at his boyfriend as if Logan were the one who'd raped him.
That was how he found himself here. After seeing the devastated look on Logan's face, he'd run, locking himself in the bathroom without another word. Now, sitting on the cold tile floor in nothing but a bathrobe after tearing his clothes off and throwing them to the side (because for some God awful reason they made him feel filthy), he felt utterly alone and dejected. Logan probably hated him. Who wouldn't?
And it was all because Julian couldn't man up and tell Logan everything. If Julian couldn't even tell Logan something important like this, then how could Logan expect Julian to be upfront and honest about anything else? Why wouldn't he hide the stupid shit too?
This was it. The end of everything he'd ever wanted, and it was all because of what that selfish, lowlife, pathetic monster Adam did to him.
Julian sobbed into his knees, the sound muffled by the thickness of his white bathrobe. He hated that name. Adam. Thankfully, he didn't have any friends named Adam because he couldn't even say it aloud anymore. He could barely think it without his chest contracting painfully and everything about that night flooding back to him in giant waves, one tsunami after another knocking him down right after he'd just gotten the strength to get back up. Dragging him further and further out into a sea that had no end in sight and with no chance of ever being saved. Not even by Logan.
"Julian? Please come out." Logan's voice was shockingly soft. So soft that if he'd been said something earlier, when Julian had first slammed the lock shut and slid to the floor and bawled, he wouldn't have heard it.
"Just go away," Julian said, feeling absolutely pathetic by how meek and broken his voice sounded.
"I'm not going away. I'm staying right here until you come out and talk to me."
"Why do you even want to talk to me?"
"Because obviously something's wrong. And I'm your boyfriend, and I want to know what."
"It's stupid. So fucking stupid."
"If it's making you act like this, Jules, then it's not stupid. It's something I should worry about, and we need to talk about it. So come out here."
Julian really didn't want to. He just wanted to stay locked up in here and not let Logan see his red-rimmed eyes and splotchy face. But he'd hid from Logan for so long, figuratively and literally, and the boy still wanted to make things work with him. So, slowly, Julian forced himself to get up and unlock the door.
Logan was standing right outside it, leaning against the wall. In that moment, Julian knew just by looking at him that Logan knew. It was written all over his face. The way he held his hands, the way he stared at Julian, like he might break if he wasn't handled with care. The way his eyes locked on Julian and behind them the clear message was burning as brightly and intensely as a neon sign in the middle of the night. He knew. Maybe not the specifics, but he knew.
Logan had only seen Julian cry once before. It had been a very, very bad day, where everything seemed to be crashing down around Julian and there was nothing he could do about it. That day Logan had burst in to shout at him for being a prick, but froze up once he saw the tears running down Julian's face. In that moment, after seeing the blond boy stare at him with wide eyes (like Julian didn't have the right to cry), Julian had shoved Logan out of his room and swore he'd never let it happen again.
Today, however, he broke that vow and threw himself into Logan's arms while the tears began to fall. Logan clutched him tightly, taking extra care to keep his hands in a spot high up on Julian's waist.
"I'm sorry," Julian whispered, face buried against Logan's neck. "I'm so, so sorry. I know I should have told you sooner, but I didn't know how. I just—you were already so upset when you got to the hospital and I couldn't give you anything else to worry about, anything that might make you go off and do something stupid like try to find—" Julian broke off and trembled in Logan's embrace. Logan hand dropped from where it rested on Julian's waist to the crook of Julian's knees, so he could pick the smaller boy up and carry him to the bed. He set him down as gently as possible before climbing in next to him, close but not too close.
"Why don't you tell me everything?" Logan murmured, brushing the hair out Julian's face.
"You don't want to hear everything." Julian shook his head.
"No, I don't. I hate that bastard enough as it is, and chances are this will only make me wish I'd gotten to him before the police even more. But I need to hear it. And you need me to hear it. Because I don't know exactly what happened. I have a vague idea, but I should know the whole thing. If…if you're not comfortable enough with telling me yet, then I won't push you. But if this is going to work, you'll have to tell me someday."
Julian inhaled deeply, and the smell of Logan's soap, cologne, sweat— just the smell of Logan—calmed him down enough to speak.
"It's a long story."
"I'm willing to listen."
And so Julian told him. He told him everything. The entire story from beginning to end and all the gruesome details in between.
"He—he asked me after he was done if I liked it," Julian paused to shut his eyes and try to block out the horrible sound of his voice cooing in his ear, "I felt good, didn't I? You enjoyed every second of it, I can tell." Julian gripped Logan's hand, the one that had become intertwined with his at the part when he had Julian forced Julian to his knees, as if Logan could sense that it was where everything was going to get really ugly. "If I liked how he felt…inside me. I spat at him and told him no, that I thought it was disgusting, that I thought he was disgusting. That was when he broke my arm. And then hit my head against the wall. Everything starts to get fuzzy from there."
"Julian." Logan's eyes were wide.
"Was that too much?" Julian said, curling in slightly on himself, so terrified of what Logan was thinking. "I'm sorry. You probably didn't want to hear that much…" Logan silenced him with a gentle kiss to his temple.
"It's not that. It's…you've been carrying that around this whole time?"
"Dr. Hendricks knows," Julian murmured. "It's not like I could keep that to myself since the doctors knew. In fact, Nurse Dolly was the one who referred me to Dr. Hendricks. She's actually an expert in dealing with victims of violent sexual assaults. So I've talked it about it with her. About the nightmares."
"Oh, my God, Julian," Logan breathed suddenly. "Your nightmares—they're about that?"
"Usually," Julian said curling and uncurling his fingers on the hand not clutching Logan's in an agitated manner. "Sometimes I'm back in the alley, waiting for someone, anyone, to come save me. But usually it's—it's the rape." Julian didn't even know he could say the word rape out loud.
"And every time I tried to—to—dammit, Jules. I didn't know what I was putting you through!" Logan said with a shudder. "I'm sorry."
"It's not your fault. It happened. No one can change that." When Logan frowned at him, Julian continued, "But I'm getting better. The nightmares are going away. Slowly, but I don't have them as often. And I didn't even start freaking out until you said…" Julian trailed off. Logan looked at him with a graceful patience, enough of it to give Julian the confidence to tell him, "He said never. Not the way you meant it. He said I'd never forget him and what he did to me because it was my first time."
"…I'd always been on top when I was with other guys. There was only one person I was willing to bottom for—" Julian smiled when Logan blushed at the realization that Julian was referring to him—"and I never thought he'd want me, so it never happened. Now I wish I had, even if it'd been some casual fling, so he wouldn't have the sick satisfaction of knowing he was my first." It was until this moment that Julian realized how close he and Logan were. Logan had been keeping his distance, trying to give Julian the space he needed so he didn't feel overwhelmed or suffocated, but he'd moved closer the more and more Julian talked, as if needing to be nearer to him, to just be there for him when Julian was most vulnerable. It was a different vulnerability than what he—Adam, Julian thought. I have to start calling him Adam. I can't hide from his name forever—had forced onto Julian. This was a chosen vulnerability. Julian wanted Logan to know it, wanted him to see the damaged part of Julian that was taking so long to heal—because he loved Logan like he'd loved no one else before, and that meant being open, even when the soft, squishy underbelly being exposed made him feel naked and so, so easy to break.
"I'll never force you to do anything," Logan said suddenly and with conviction. "You know that, don't you? You'll always have a choice with me. I know it's hard, from everything you know about me, to believe I'd ever back off. But this is different. You're different. I—I'm learning how to be a better person because of you."
"You never were a bad person, Logan."
"The old me would've gotten angry with you for not letting me go further. I would have demanded that you tell me what the fuck's going on or told you to quit being a prude. I would have been such a jackass to you, Jules. But after seeing you in the hospital after what he did—I knew I'd never be rough with you again. I'd still tease, and we'd still have our little fights. But I would never, ever say things to purposefully cut you down or make you feel like you were anything less than a person. Because he's already done that." Logan stopped long enough to suck in a long breath and thumb down Julian's side. "I'm going to do everything I can to help you build yourself back up. I know you'll never be the Julian from before—and that's okay. I'm not the same Logan either. But I know we can get some of the old Julian back. The one who loves to laugh for no reason other than he can, play with Sonic just to play with the annoying little guy, and make music just because he loves making music. He's in there. I know he is. He's just afraid of what will happen if he comes back out into the open, where he can be hurt again."
"How are you so sure?"
"Because I don't think I'd love you so much if you were a completely different person."
"You didn't love me before." Julian regretted it the moment it came out of his mouth, but Logan just nodded sadly, as if he knew Julian was going to say that.
"I didn't. Or at least I didn't see it. Until I almost lost you. Then it hit me harder than a fucking diesel locomotive." Julian laughed softly. A real laugh. One he hadn't produced in a long, long time.
The weight of everything wasn't necessarily taken off his shoulders so much as the heaviness of it all was now less cumbersome and exhausting because Logan was there to take away some of it. Logan wouldn't ever let him forget what it was like to be loved, cherished, and wanted for nothing more than being himself. He couldn't make the nightmares disappear, couldn't make the flashbacks quit smashing into Julian, or even take away the thoughts of wanting to make all the pain stop by just ending it all. But he could make it endurable long enough for Julian and time to do the work they needed to do to make it better.
It would never fully go away. There would always be some small speck of Julian that would be haunted by nightmares, of demons long since pasted. But Logan would be there for those moments too. When Julian wasn't strong enough on his own, Logan would be there to prove to him he didn't have to be alone because someone loved him enough to hold his hand and whisper in his ear that everything would be all right. That he was strong. Strong and beautiful and the most courageous person in the world. Logan wouldn't ever let Julian think otherwise. Not so long as Logan's heart beat steady and strong beneath his chest, which it did as Julian curled into Logan's side, his head resting right over it as exhaustion began to set in. God, he was tired. So very, very tired.
Getting better wasn't going to be easy, Julian knew. But he also knew the things worth living for never were.