Disclaimer: I don't own QAF or any of the characters.
Author's Note: So, I've never written QAF fanfiction before and I'm a little nervous about it. I just recently got into this show and watched all five seasons in a week and just fell in love. I'm sure you can all relate. Especially Brian and Justin just stole my heart and I came up with this silly idea for a fic and this is how it turned out. Basically, episode 203 with Howard Bellweather, his infuriating article about Brian and his stubborn attitude kind of frustrated me and I guess I hoped that during later seasons we'd see Howie again and he'd see how perfect Brian and Justin are together and that he'd take back his statements about stolen youth and innocence. Well, he didn't. So I felt like I had to write it. Don't know why I care. He was just an asshole, but still. I have a weak spot for those things. I always need people to like me in real life and in this case I need a fictional character to like two other fictional characters. Maybe I'm just insane.
Summary: Takes place after Brian and Justin get engaged in season 5. Howard Bellweather comes to town for another book signing. Brian and Justin happen to come across it and Justin realizes they still haven't gotten an apology for the article. Will he finally get it? Meanwhile Brian couldn't care less, but he's still a little upset Bellweather said he was 31. He was 30 back then, okay?
Rated for language.
A perfect fit
Justin always enjoyed his walks through the neighborhood and made it a point to always walk to his destinations when possible. He got lucky with the weather today and he loved the feeling of the faint sunshine on his fair skin as he contently turned the corner, getting closer to his destination. When he passed the book store he stopped dead in his tracks though and backed up a few steps to read the flyer on the window more thoroughly. He checked his watch and a small smile formed on his face. How interesting. The idea instantly popped into his head and it didn't take long before he got out his cell phone and dialed the familiar number.
The bell above the door chimed when he entered and the door slammed closed behind him. Justin wondered why it was always somewhat dark in book stores like this. It didn't make much sense to him, since the act of reading actually required good lighting. He needed a few seconds to adjust his eyes to the lack of sunshine, but once that was done he immediately scanned the store and spotted the desk in the back corner.
Howard Bellweather was singing a book for a young man and Justin observed him. He was casually talking to the man, smiling every now and then while writing. It surprised Justin there weren't any other customers in the store and there was no line in front of the desk. What a difference a few years could make. Howard handed the man the copy of his book who politely thanked him before wandering off. Justin walked over to the pile of books and grabbed the top one, not even bothering to check the title. He didn't care. Then he walked over to the desk. Howard now spotted him and flashed him a warm smile. His hand already reached out to the book, but Justin didn't hand it to him. Instead he just placed the book on the desk, smiling at the older man.
"Not very busy, huh?" He started the conversation. "Seems like your career has taken a turn. And not for the best."
Howard Bellweather seemed taken aback by the straight forward approach of the blond man who leaned over the desk just a little, looking him straight in the eye.
"It's still early." Howard replied politely, but obviously a little agitated, taking the book and opening it on the first page, his pen firmly in hand. "Now, who do I make this out to?"
"I take it you don't remember me then?"
The writer looked up at those unusual words and investigated Justin for a second, slightly frowning while doing so. "Sorry. I can't say I do."
"That's okay. It's been a few years." Justin admitted, standing up straight again and casually wandering over to a nearby bookcase and leaning against it, before turning back to Howard. "I think last time we spoke you thought of me as the teenage lover of a promiscuous pedophile."
A flicker of recognition spread across Bellweather's face as he took in the young man standing before him.
"Ah, right. The article. About Brian Kinney, right? Still one of the best I've ever written if I may say so myself. It sent a powerful message."
"It sure did." Justin agreed, faking a smile.
Bellweather suddenly seemed a lot more comfortable with the situation as he leaned back in his chair and looked at Justin.
"I remember you making quite a scene at one of these signings. Standing up for this Kinney character. How did all of that work out for you?"
Justin simply smiled, looking down. "It was a long time ago. When I was indeed a silly teenager. You said some interesting things last time we spoke though."
"I remember. I really felt for you, kid. So, was I right?"
"Let's see." Howard started, furrowing his brow. "How did I put it back then? He saved your life and I told you that he stole a big part of it. Your youth."
"And my innocence." Justin finished.
"Exactly." He smiled. "And was I right?"
"I guess in some ways you were."
"I'm glad you finally realized it and got out on time. You seem to be doing well."
"I am doing well." Justin confirmed. "I'm happy."
"Glad to hear it. Now, I don't mean to be rude, but I don't recall your name. So who do I make this out to?" Bellweather asked, focusing on the book again.
As if on cue, the door of the book store opened, accompanied by the chiming of the bell. Both Justin and Bellweather looked up and saw how Mr. Brian Kinney himself barged in through the door. He seemed annoyed as he took off his sunglasses and searched the store. It didn't take him long to spot Justin and he immediately walked up to him.
"Jesus, Sunshine. Where's the fire? I got your message. I thought we were meeting at the tailor. What the fuck are we doing in this stuffy book store?"
It became clear that Brian only had eyes for his partner and didn't even notice the presence of the author who seemed surprised by the appearance of Brian and there was no doubt about the fact that Bellweather did recognize him.
Brian wrapped his arms around the young blond when he reached him and placed a breathtaking kiss on his lips that Justin greedily answered and returned. It was Brian who broke the kiss, repositioning his arm around Justin's shoulder, pulling him closer, but giving him a questioning look.
"What the fuck is going on?"
Justin smiled. "Something unexpectedly came up. Figured it was worth the detour."
Brian's gaze moved to the desk.
"You remember Mr. Bellweather?"
It seemed as if Brian was surprised, but he recovered within a second as he let go of Justin and approached the desk.
"Howie! Of course I remember. Can't believe you're in town! You should've called. We all would've gone out for drinks or something. Of course my schedule is pretty full now, so it's not going to happen this time, but…hey, next time give us that call, okay?" Brian exclaimed, feigning enthusiasm as he tapped the desk with his fist, before looking around the deserted store. "Good luck with the crowds. Damn, your popularity is never-ending, isn't it? Quite the career, buddy."
With that Brian turned around and walked back to Justin, taking him by the hand. "Now, let's go. The tailor is waiting."
"No, no, no." Justin objected, pulling Brian back. "I think Howie still owes you that apology. Hell, he even owes me an apology."
Brian sighed. "You're still not over that? It's been years."
"Exactly." Justin agreed, letting go of Brian's hand and walking back up to the desk, facing the author. "I think it's time Mr. Bellweather here admits he was wrong about you. About us."
"I still stand by every single word I wrote." Bellweather finally spoke, but a slight uncertainty shining through his voice. "And I'm sad to see you still haven't figured it out."
"Five years." Justin spoke carefully. "Brian and I have been together for five years."
Brian let out an exaggerated sigh, before walking over to Justin, standing still behind him and wrapping his arms around his waist. He then rested his head on Justin's shoulder.
"Who cares what this nobody thinks? Can we just go and leave Howie with his adoring fans?"
"No." Justin once again objected. "He called you a pedophile! He called you…"
"31." Brian interrupted him bitterly, frowning a little.
"He portrayed me as some kind of lovesick teenager with a crush."
Brian gently kissed Justin's neck, ignoring the writer completely. "Let it go, sunshine."
Justin focused on Bellweather again. "Just tell us you're sorry."
"I won't." Howard spoke, getting up from his chair. "It's been five years of lying and deceit. The words I spoke to you then are as true as they are now. Maybe even more so. He's got you under his spell. And I really do feel for you. Mistaking that for love."
"Brian loves me." Justin continued.
"I know you think he does, kid. That's the sad part. But you're just his boy toy. You're how old now? 21? 22? Be careful. Soon he'll start looking for something fresh and new."
Brian closed his eyes for just a second at those words.
"We're getting married." Justin concluded.
The brunet suddenly let go of his partner as he stepped aside and leaned over the desk.
"Can I just cut in for one second?" He asked. "I really don't give a shit about that article you wrote years ago and I sure as hell don't want an apology for it. I suppose it had some truth to it, I'll even give you that. But we have an appointment at the tailor to get our wedding suits and frankly, I'm just very bored with this whole situation. So just humor us and tell Justin you were wrong. That way we can all move on with our lives and I can forget you even exist. Like the rest of the world apparently has."
Bellweather hesitated for a second. "You're getting married?"
"Yeah, we are." Justin confirmed.
"Congratulations. So what happened to you, Brian? This doesn't sound like you."
"Oh, for fuck's sake." Brian sighed. "You're pretending to know me now?"
"I've heard enough about you."
"Yeah, I'm a fucking legend."
"That still doesn't answer the question."
"I don't owe you an explanation. It's none of your fucking business."
"Yet you want an apology."
"No, Justin wants one. I'm just standing here growing more and more bored with this conversation."
Bellweather hesitated, before slowly sitting down again and taking his pen in hand.
"You know, you and I have one thing in common, Brian."
"Well, that's unfortunate."
"We're both very stubborn." Howard revealed as he started to write.
Brian raised his eyebrows as he turned to Justin. "You heard that? He's never going to admit he was wrong. So is there any way you can just make peace with that and forget this fucker? Please?"
Justin smiled as he leaned in and gently kissed Brian on the lips. "I just wanted him to know, that's all."
"That the fucking legend has met his match in his teenage lover." Justin said flirtatiously, smiling. "And that they're a perfect fit. They have been for the last five years and will continue to be so even if the failed writer doesn't want to acknowledge it."
Brian smirked as he leaned in once again and kissed Justin. "Does this great revelation mean we can finally leave?"
"Yes, please. Just get the fuck out." Bellweather added as he held out the copy of his book that Justin had placed on the desk when he first came in. "And take this. Consider it a wedding present."
"And there was hardly any sarcasm in that statement." Brian replied, taking the book. "I know just the place for this."
"The fireplace?" Justin asked.
"I was thinking trashcan, but the fireplace is a good option, too."
"Get out." Bellweather sighed.
"Gladly." Brian replied, smiling at the writer. "Good luck with everything, Howie. Make sure your hand doesn't get too tired from all those books you're signing."
Justin simply waved at Howard, a proud smile on his face. Then Brian wrapped his arm around him and pulled him away from the desk towards the door. The chiming bell announced their exit as they stepped out on the street.
"Freedom at last." Brian sighed.
"Sorry I dragged you in there."
"I didn't know you still cared so much about that damn article."
"I didn't." Justin answered truthfully. "I just saw the flyer and wanted him to know."
"That we're a perfect fit." Brian repeated sarcastically, imitating Justin's sweet voice.
"Shut up!" Justin laughed, hitting Brian on the chest who in turn pulled Justin closer and smiled into the younger boy's hair.
A short silence fell.
"Can I see the book for a second?" Justin broke it.
"You see a trashcan?" Brian asked, handing over the book he was still holding.
"No, but I think he wrote something inside of it."
Brian immediately placed his hand over Justin's who was about to open the book to read the message Bellweather had written inside of it. Justin's gaze went up to Brian's. "What?"
"Just promise me that no matter what that asshole has written in there, we're not going back to the book store from hell to confront him."
Justin chuckled. "Promise."
Brian removed his hand from the book and the twosome continued to walk as Justin opened it to the first page. Brian watched Justin from the corner of his eye as he read the message and saw how the expression on his partner's face softened.
"What is it?"
"It's kind of sweet." Justin admitted.
"Give me that." Brian ordered as he grabbed the book and scanned the message. "Ah, Jesus fucking Christ."
"It's sweet! Admit it."
"I won't." Brian said firmly, shaking his head.
"Well, from now on I won't say bad things about him anymore."
"He said I was 31!"
"Like four years ago! You'd kill for somebody to say you're 31 now."
"I am 31."
"Sure you are."
"I'll always be 31." Brian muttered softly, smiling.
"Okay, old man." Justin agreed, wrapping his arms around Brian's chest.
"Okay, Sonny boy." The older man replied, before kissing Justin's cheek.
They continued their walk in silence, Brian clutching the book to his chest, Justin's hand covering his, both of them holding on to the book.
To Brian and Justin,
I stand by what I wrote all those years ago. And I won't admit that I was wrong.
I will admit to what I saw today. Because I recognize love when I see it.
Congratulations on your upcoming nuptials.
Now stay the hell away from me.
Author's Note: Okay. I have no idea what this was, but at the very least it gave me some satisfaction. I'd love to hear your opinion! Can't wait to read them. Thanks for reading. And who knows, maybe I'll return to writing for this fandom some time.