AN: Okay folks, first of all, if you haven't read CP Coulter's "Dalton" then go read it now. Otherwise this will probably make absolutely no sense to you. So this is a Jogan or Julian/Logan or Juligan or Light or whatever-the-heck-you-want-to-call-them fic. Personally, when I started reading "Dalton" I hated Logan (didn't we all?), but the INSTANT I learned that Julian was in love with Logan... I dunno. Everything turned upside down and now they're one of my favorite pairings. Please enjoy!
DISCLAIMER: (I should really do these more often) I own nothing. Julian, Logan, Bailey, etc. all belong to the wonderful CPCoulter. The Warblers, Dalton, and Kurt/Blaine belong to Ryan Murphy I believe. OH! Also, the song belongs to Enrique Iglesias :)
His chin was held high as he strode in through the doors of the Stuart house. A strange sense of nostalgia filled him as students instinctively gravitated away to give him room and the young freshmen gawked shamelessly. The familiar, comforting power of being feared was strangely soothing. He had never thought that he would miss the apprehensive reception he always encountered in Dalton. It was calming. It was home.
Julian Larson-Armstrong had not been on Dalton grounds for nearly nine months, having been away on set. He still remembered with vivid clarity the day that he left, thinking that he would never return again. He could clearly remember striding through the same doors he had just entered through, his posture stiff and his glare cold. No one had approached him then, just like no one approached him now. The seemingly permanent departure had come exactly one week after he received the bloody threat on the steps outside, and when his parents and agent found out they had panicked. Julian had been pulled from school immediately, never to return to Dalton again. Yet despite their assurances that he would never be here again, there he was, back again for yet another year.
They had found his stalker within the month –arresting Adam Clavell and sending him to the mental institute– but Julian had opted out of returning to his boarding school. He had finally escaped the drama and strict teachers, not to mention the one person that could make his blood boil and his palms sweat. Logan. He had at last gotten away from the boy who dominated his every thought, and that was what he had been trying to do for the past three years. Now that he was out, he had absolutely no desire to go back in.
"Welcome back, Julian!" Bailey, one of the other Stuarts called happily from his place on the common room couch. Julian attempted to smile back, but it came out as a grimace. Damn him and his inability to stay strong. Had he just forgotten about Dalton, he would not be in this position. He had managed to keep away for eight months! After eight months he had thought he was rid of Dalton, but as always that sickening pull towards Logan had dragged him back. Back for senior year. He had fought against it desperately, spending the first month which could have been school cruising clubs around Los Angeles, but after a while he realized that his heart sped up every time he saw a tall blonde. He was beat, and he knew it. So, he spoke to his parents who agreed that he could attend Dalton once again on the condition that he would tell them everything that happened while at school. His parents might not have been deserving of a medal, but they didn't want their son in harm's way.
Now, here he was, back in the halls he had sworn that he had left forever. Some students were brave enough to call out greetings as Bailey had, but most simply scuttled away in trepidation. Julian was known around campus to be a diva, sure, but he was the one who always set their prefect on a rampage. No one wanted to be in the room when Logan and Julian started going at it, as it was likely that some of the anger would be transferred onto them as well. Julian however loved those moments. He cherished them, because for those few minutes, he would have Logan's absolute attention. It didn't even matter that he was being yelled at or that Logan looked like he wanted to kill him. There was honest emotion in Logan's expression and voice; it was quite possibly the only time that he was being honest with the young actor. All that mattered in those moments were that they were wholly focused on one another.
"Jules!" Julian's neck snapped to the side to see Derek walking briskly towards him. He looked good, his skin was tanned from obvious time spent playing sports outside all summer and his hair now had lighter streaks in it. His expression however did not show anything so carefree. His face was set into a hard mask, his eyes sharp as he marched towards the actor. Automatically, Julian stuck a hand out for his friend to shake when he got close enough, but the other boy ignored it completely and instead yanked Julian in for a tight hug. An almost uncomfortably tight hug. Julian was shocked, to say the least. Derek had never particularly been a touchy-feely person, and this sudden display of physical affection was completely unexpected. Hesitantly, Julian hugged him back, not completely certain how to react.
"Uh, hey Derek," his voice was confused and laced with wariness. Instantly, Derek wrenched Julian away from himself, glaring down at the brunette. Dragging back a fist, he threw his arm forward and punched Julian square in the nose. The actor staggered back in shock, his hand instantly coming up to check that nothing was broken. Derek wasn't going to break anything, however. He was just trying to knock some goddamn sense into his best friend.
"What the hell, Larson?" he shouted, his voice furious and bouncing off of the walls. Julian glared right back, unafraid of his enraged friend while still tenderly probing his nose to check for any cracks.
"I think I should be asking that, Seigerson!" Julian bellowed back, "You do realize that if my face is messed up for my photoshoot on Sunday, that I'm screwed?" He cautiously took off his sunglasses for the first time since arriving, and inspected them for any damage. The nosepiece was a little bent, but thankfully Derek hadn't put his all into his punch. As soon as the glasses were off of his face, Derek was privy to the dark circles under his best friend's eyes, a clear indication of lack of sleep.
"Eight months," Derek continued without pausing, knowing that the last thing Julian would ever accept was pity, "eight months and you didn't phone me once!" Julian rolled his eyes.
"Getting soft in your old age there, D? Or possibly losing your memory, because I actually did call." Derek snorted.
"Technically I called you, dumbass," he retorted, "and that was one goddamn time! The only reason I called was to make sure your freaky stalker hadn't gotten you! Are you aware that you just upped and disappeared out of Dalton without telling me or Logan?" Pain and something else flickered in Julian's eyes for a split second before he settled on the usual indifferent mask.
"My parents yanked me, nothing I could do about it."
"Yeah, because you protested it so painstakingly! I knew you were going to ditch, Jules, but I didn't expect you to leave without a goodbye!" Julian set his suitcase down.
"I'm back, aren't I?" he asked rhetorically, to which Derek paused. That was true. Why was Julian back? Seeing the confusion on his friend's face, Julian elaborated. "I've got nothing else to do until I get another offer, so I figured I might as well attend school."
"What about him?" Julian cut his friend off savagely before realizing how much emotion had been in his voice. Carefully, he schooled himself once more. "He's probably off wooing some new Warbler, so he's the least of my worries. He won't even notice I'm back until we're at each other's throats again," he worked hard to sound bored, but knew it didn't work when Derek simply rolled his eyes.
"Sure, Jules. Just keep telling yourself that. Look, you know the way, right? Your room's the same way you left it. I've got a date. Don't be an ass and leave again." Though neither boy would admit it, this was Derek's way of telling Julian to stay because he cared. Julian nodded almost imperceptibly and replaced his glasses on his face, and the two parted once more. This was how it always was with the three. They would yell and cut each other down, but when it came down to it, they genuinely cared about each other. Or at least, that was how it was with Julian and Derek. Logan was a whole other story.
Shaking his head to rid himself of those thoughts, Julian hoisted his suitcase up once more and made his way up the curved staircase to the room he had called his own on and off for three years. The hall echoed with the sound of his footsteps, and it seemed to him that it was louder than usual. When he finally arrived at his dorm, Julian pressed the door open to see the room spotless. No longer did his collage of hundreds of pictures adorn the walls, and the desk wasn't a minefield of homework and scripts. The room was hardly recognizable, like a stranger's empty home. Tightly, he swallowed, trying to rid himself of the lump now lodged in his throat. It looked almost as though he had never existed here. This is what happens, he thought savagely as he threw his suitcase down, out of sight, out of mind. Roughly, the actor ran his hands through his hair. He had been here only for maybe fifteen minutes, but already he felt repressed, caged and agitated. And he hadn't even seen Logan yet.
"Get it together," he muttered to himself, sitting heavily down on the edge of the bed. "You're Julian Larson-Armstrong, and this is just high school. Piece of freaking cake." Even as he spoke the words, he didn't believe them. When had his high school experiences ever been that easy? When he wasn't pining agonizingly over Logan, he was either having a screaming match with the prefect or Derek, or trying to escape his stalker. He could hardly remember any moments in time when he had been completely at ease or worry-free. With a heavy sigh, he flopped backwards so that he was lying half on the bed, staring up at the ceiling. To be honest, he probably could count those instances on his two hands. There was always something there to destroy the peace.
"I see that you're back," Julian's eyes snapped open. Speak of the devil, and he shall appear. Slowly the brunette sat up to see Logan standing in the doorway, half leaning against the frame. Briefly, Julian allowed himself to be awed by the reappearance of his best friend.
Logan's blonde hair was shaggier than before, falling slightly in front of his pale green eyes. He had heard Logan complain once that his eyes were too pale, and he had responded that they made him look like a bug. In the resulting shouting match, Julian had to watch himself to make sure that he didn't mention that they reminded him of his favorite gemstone peridot. Logan's jaw seemed stronger and more defined, and a shiver ran down Julian's spine when he noticed the light stubble there. Clearly, Logan had begun shaving. Those muscular arms Julian had found himself dreaming about too often were crossed over a defined chest hidden beneath only a white dress shirt. His mouth went dry as he realized for the first time that the blonde had forgone the blazer for the day.
"That I am," there, that sounded sharp enough to be considered normal. He had to put a little extra venom in his voice to ensure that he wouldn't sound like a lovesick fool. Smirking, Logan held up two hands in mock surrender.
"I didn't come here to start a fight, Jules. Just wanted to be sure that it was true," at Julian's confused look, he elaborated. "I saw the moving van pulling up. Your stuff should be here any minute. I would recognize that crappy antique dresser of yours anywhere." Julian gave a jerk of his head, not wanting to reveal that the only reason he had kept that old junker was because during their stint as roommates, Logan's cologne had spilled on it. On humid days, you could still catch a whiff.
"Yes, well, while the welcoming party has been truly wonderful, I think I should start unpacking. So-"
"Why did you do it?"
The question caught Julian off guard, and he frowned in confusion. He hadn't been back that long. What could he have possibly done already?
"I have honestly no idea what you're referring to," he finally responded, standing and lugging his suitcase onto the bed to unpack.
"Don't give me that," Logan bit out, "Why did you leave without saying goodbye? Why didn't you call us? Why didn't you come back?" Instantly, Julian was defensive. Logan was already getting that self-righteous tone in his voice.
"I left because I was receiving death threats, Lo," he answered quickly, "As for not calling, it's a two way street. It's not like you picked up the phone either. And I came back, didn't I?" Logan scoffed.
"Sure, you came back. Half of a goddamn year later!" he growled, to which Julian rolled his eyes.
"I had forgotten how melodramatic you can be, Wright," the brunette retorted mockingly.
"Don't get cute with me, Julian! Derek thought your stalker had gotten to you!" it didn't escape the actor's notice that it was Derek who was worried. "We had to find out through the tabloids that you were alive and out clubbing! We thought you were dead!"
"Were I dead, it would be splashed all over the news," Julian stated factually, his tone haughty.
"Oh yes, the whole nation would be in mourning," Logan snorted derisively.
"Of course," Julian sniffed, "but we all know that you would be the one throwing yourself at my coffin."
"I'd more likely be relieved that I didn't have to worry about you getting yourself killed," at this, Julian felt his heart drop to his stomach. Logan, not noticing Julian's change in demeanour, continued. "Do you realize how disruptive you are? I mean, one minute you're clogging the hallway with your massive ego, and the next you're pulling some disappearing act leaving us all to wonder where the hell you've gone! Why don't you just pick? It would save the rest of us a lot of trouble!" Julian didn't even register the worry that Logan had professed.
"I'm so sorry that I've blipped on the radar of Logan Wright," he snapped, dark eyes flashing. "I'll do my absolute best not to disturb you again, Oh Tempestuous One."
"It's not just me, Larson! You piss everyone off just by showing your pompous mug around here! You think that we care about your diva drama?"
"Is my diva drama actually any worse than your Windsor drama? You are such a hypocrite, Logan! You tell me that I mess everyone in this school up, but then you go and actively screw with everyone's lives! Of course all of us want to know who your latest obsession is! Of course we care exactly what Hummel and Anderson did today in practice!" at Logan's murderous glower, Julian simply laughed. "What? Hummel's no longer the be all, end all?"
"Shut the hell up, Larson!" he snarled, his lip curling up slightly. "It's better than you bitching all the time about your stupid actor dramas! Not to mention the constant recollections of whatever model you've been screwing around with. People think I'm messed up, and maybe I am, but at least I don't pretend to be fine!" he advanced towards the smaller boy. "All those girls, those parties...it's just a cover up, isn't it? A pathetic mask to hide that you're just as screwed as the rest of us!" Julian stormed past him and gestured furiously at the door.
"Why? Scared I'm onto something, Larson? Scared I'll uncover some deep dark secret that you've been hiding from us all?" Julian felt his eyes stinging though the tears hadn't come yet. They would though. Soon. "What're you hiding, huh Julian?" Logan stalked forward and stood hardly a foot away. "What are you so goddamn afraid of?" Without a word, Julian tried to pass him so that Logan would be closest to the door, but as he passed Logan grabbed his arm and whipped him back around. "You're even more pathetic than I am," Logan hissed in his face, "no wonder you've never had a relationship ever last."
That was the last straw. With one almighty push, Julian shoved against Logan's chest, sending the blonde stumbling back ever so slightly.
"Get the hell out of my room," he managed through a rough throat. Logan opened his mouth to retort something nasty no doubt, but Julian stopped him dead. "I said get out!" his raised voice echoed through the hallway, and the distant sounds of Stuarts quieted. Everyone who hadn't known before knew now. Julian was back, and the two were at it again.
This time, however, it was different. Tears were pooling in Julian's eyes, and as much as he tried to will them away, still they came. Thankfully none spilled over, but they were there nonetheless and made him feel like some over-emotional girl. His throat was tight with unshed tears, his face growing heated. Logan stared at him for a long minute, and then turned sharply and strode away. With all his strength, Julian threw the door closed. The slam hit him hard, and he instantly leaned against the door digging his palms furiously into his eyes to stop the tears.
"Suck it up, Larson," he grumbled quietly to himself, internally berating himself for being so... "pathetic," he whispered now, the hateful word bubbling out of his throat without his permission. The spiteful word that had been bouncing around his mind since he had fallen for the blonde prefect. And now Logan had called him pathetic, voicing that which Julian had feared for all of those years. He had always thought that Logan would find him to be pathetic, would laugh in his face. And now he had.
A quick rapping knock on the door made Julian jerk away quickly.
"Who is it?" he demanded, his voice coming out rough and angry.
"Joseph, Mr. Larson-Armstrong. We've got your furniture out here," Julian took a deep breath and turned to open the door. Directly in his line of sight was the antique dresser that Logan had mentioned earlier. His throat closed up, and wordlessly he gestured them in. The movers entered, each doing their part to carefully haul in the slight brunette's belongings. Julian watched silently, his eyes scanning everything as it was brought in to check for damages. There were none.
When the movers left, a strange silence fell over the dorm. Normally, there would be some kind of music playing somewhere, or you would be able to hear the distant sound of other Stuarts talking. Now however, all was still. Stuarts were creeping around the house trying not to agitate their furious prefect or his newly returned friend. The lack of music was nearly as unsettling as the lack of talking. If there was one thing that Julian remembered about Dalton, it was the continuous presence of music. Especially considering that the Stuart prefect was in the Warbl- no. He wasn't going to think about Logan. There was no reason why he should.
"Yeah right," Julian muttered, before walking slowly towards the dresser. Who was he trying to kid? This piece of ugly wood was a testament to how frequently he thought about Logan. As he drew closer, the intoxicating smell of cologne permeated the air. Clearly, it had been humid in the moving van, as the scent was strong. So strong that it felt as though the cologne had wafted throughout his entire room, tainting everything. It was beginning to make him feel lightheaded.
The sudden urge to escape from the heady scent was overwhelming, and without thoroughly thinking it through, Julian turned and practically ran out of the room.
Aimlessly, he wandered the halls, no longer relishing in the terror of the other Stuarts. Instead, he almost wished that one might shoot him a small smile or heaven forbid make some small gesture of kindness. Anything but the deafening silence that rang in his ears. Was he actually that unapproachable? Even his footsteps were muted in the marble hall.
After a while, Julian came across the spare furniture storage room. The door was unlocked as it always was, and after glancing quickly around, Julian slipped inside. The room was actually an old dorm room, but it had been commandeered as a storage room years before the actor had come to attend Dalton. There were stacks of mattresses piled in the corners, and clusters of bedside tables along the walls. Julian walked through the maze of items, letting his fingers trail over the dusty surfaces. It smelled dank and musty, nothing at all like the enticing aroma of cologne. It was perfectly unappealing, clearing his senses of all that was Logan. After all, what would the perfect prefect want to do in this room? He had probably never even been in this room.
At the far end of the room, partially hidden beneath bundles of excess sheets and other various odds and ends, was what appeared to be an old piano. Cocking his head slightly to the side, Julian approached the aged instrument. A small stool was perched on top of it with a sheen of dust coating its surface, indicating that it had not been touched in possibly years. Almost reverently, Julian ghosted his hand over it, the film of dust transferring to his fingertips. Julian's tongue flicked out to moisten his cracking lips as carefully he lifted the stool up and then set it down directly in front of the piano. Glancing around, almost as though to make sure that no one was around, he sat down upon the stool and rested his hands against the cool keys. They felt smooth beneath his fingers, well worn from years of playing. Quietly, almost so quiet that he could hardly hear it, a chord was played. Then another. He let the chord ring for a moment, before hitting a single note, and memories came flooding back to him.
He remembered a time when he was seven years old. His mother, the Dolce Larson, had been sitting with him on the stool of the grand piano in one of his many childhood homes. His parents were still together, but he knew that something weird was going on with them.
"Julian," his mother had smiled brightly, one of her few genuine smiles, "Today I'm going to teach you one of my favorite songs, alright? It's brand new, but I know that someday you're going to love it as much as I do." Julian had nodded excitedly, glad to have his mother's full attention for once. These moments were few and far between, and when she genuinely wanted to spend time with him, he reveled in it. She gently took his hand and placed it on the piano, her own slender fingers curling over his slightly chubby ones. Softly, she began to sing, and her voice –though not professional– was the most beautiful thing Julian had ever heard. From that moment on, it was one of his favorite songs. He hoped that someday he would be able to play and sing it to the one he loved.
Slowly, yet another tear slipped down his cheek. He had never in a million years expected it to be a boy he wanted so desperately to sing it to. Never in a billion years did he think that he would be singing it alone with tears stinging at his eyes, and yet here he was. Clearing his throat, he softly played the introduction, his fingers shaking ever so slightly.
"Would you dance if I asked you to dance?
Would you run and never look back?
Would you cry?"
A watery, sniffling laugh weaseled through his lips. No, Logan would never cry.
"If you saw me crying?
Would you save my soul tonight?
Would you tremble, if I touched your lips?
Would you laugh? Oh please tell me this
Now would you die? For the one you love?
Hold me in your arms-"
What was he doing? Julian stopped hesitantly, more tears sliding down his cheeks. Logan would never hold him in his arms. Never would he feel those arms wrapped securely around him in comfort or love. The closest he would ever get was if he were to tackle the blonde under the pretense of fighting. Swallowing tightly, however, he pressed on.
I can be your hero baby
I can kiss away the pain,"
It was only too true. He would do all that he could to take away any pain of Logan's. Whenever the blonde was pining over another boy, Julian swallowed whatever proclamations of love he wanted to spew and instead nudged the other boy in Logan's direction. Anything to make Logan's life sweeter.
"I will stand by you forever
You can take my breath away,"
It seemed that every time he saw Logan, he felt a hitch in his breath. He inhaled deeply now, reveling in that he could breathe. Yet still, lingering on the edge of his senses was that smell of cologne. That perfect, masculine scent.
"Would you swear that you'll always be mine?
Would you lie? Would you run and hide?
Am I in too deep? Have I lost my mind?"
God yes, he had lost his mind. Singing this song while thinking of Logan? Never would Logan swear to be his. Never would Logan do anything but lie or hurt him.
"I don't care, you're here tonight."
But he wasn't there. He was never there. He was always off wooing some new Warbler and forgetting all about his best friend who was left in the background always. Always in the back, never the front.
"I can be your hero baby
I can kiss away the pain
I will stand by you forever
You can take my breath-"
Julian cut himself off with a choked sound. Never. He would never have those things with Logan. Silently, with tears streaming down his cheeks, Julian played the instrumental section, still able to breathe in and taste Logan's cologne on the air he breathed.
His voice was breaking, the tears evident in his pained singing. He imagined Logan to be standing on the other side of the piano, staring at him.
"I just want to hold you
I just want to hold you, oh yeah.
Am I in too deep?"
Julian's eyes slid closed, more tears cascading down his cheeks as his voice grew louder.
"Have I lost my mind?
Well I don't care, you're here tonight."
His fingers pounded on the piano now, not even caring that he was still in the middle of the Stuart house and that anyone could hear him. He was lost in his own world now, staring into the imaginary eyes of Logan as his image shimmered.
"I can be your hero baby!"
In his mind, he could hear Logan's deeper voice mixing in with his own, could hear the harmonies their voices created. He choked slightly, knowing that he would never actually hear their voices harmonizing.
"I can kiss away the pain! Oh yeah!
I will stand by you forever!"
Julian paused to catch his breath, but froze when the voice inside his mind kept going. His eyes snapped open.
"You can take my breath away,"
His fingers kept playing, despite the confusion and terror running through his mind. No longer was he seeing Logan's figure in front of him, and the voice was louder now, as though coming from right behind him.
"I can be your hero baby!
I can kiss way the pain
And I will stand by you forever!
You can take my breath away
You can take my breath away."
Julian never continued singing. He willed the voice in his head to stop. It never did. It couldn't be real though, it wasn't possible. Slowly, he turned on the stool to see Logan standing a foot away from him, his pale green eyes shining like peridots in the sun.
"L-Logan," Julian choked out, his voice breaking. Slowly but determinedly, Logan stepped forward and grabbed Julian's shoulders. The actor didn't even have the brainpower to struggle as he was pulled towards the blonde so that their faces were inches away from each other.
"That was beautiful." Logan stated firmly, his lips still trembling slightly. "I...Derek told me. Everything." Julian's eyes widened in horror, and he tried to pull away for the first time. Logan held him tightly, not letting him move an inch.
"I can be,"
He sang softly, moving closer, his lips barely brushing against Julian's before pressing firmly against them. The sensation sent shockwaves down Julian's spine, and he leaned into the taller boy.
AN: That's it! So, whattaya think? This was my first published Jogan fic, but there's certainly going to be more :) Tell me what you think by reviewing, pretty please! Reviews make me SMILE! I looove reviews and reviewers, even if it's anonymous :) Thank you for reading my story, I'll see you soon!