Trevor was about to crawl into bed when his phone rang. Instantly, he started to panic. An unexpected phone call and one in the morning was never a good thing. When he looked down and saw Mike's name on the screen, he didn't know whether it was a good sign or a bad one. Mike didn't get into trouble, not without him, but if anything had happened to him...
"Hey, what's up?" He kept his voice calm. This was no big deal. They hadn't spoken in weeks, not since he'd packed him off on a bus on his boss's orders but, sure, there could be a completely normal reason for this. Mike was probably fine.
"Hey." That was all he said. Nothing more. Trevor took a deep breath.
"Are you okay, man? It's late."
"Sorry, did I wake you?"
"No, of course not just... is there anything wrong. You're worrying me, here."
"No, I'm fine, I guess. Nothing major."
"Okay, so what is wrong? Major, minor, I don't care."
In all honesty, he was relieved to hear Mike's voice. He'd wanted to call but there was that unspoken agreement, sealed with their trademark fake punch up, that Trevor was going away to give him his space, let him get on with his life. It had almost caused him physical pain to walk away from his oldest friend but, of course, he didn't show it. He just grinned and walked away, like he knew he should.
"It's just... everything. Work is hard, people are dicks, the usual."
"I know how you feel," Trevor said offhandedly.
"No you don't." It was casual but there was something about the way Mike had said it. He sounded bitter, almost angry.
"Yeah, man, I do."
"You don't have a job, Trevor. You've never had a job, not since highschool."
"Oh come on, what is this? Phoning me up at one AM to lecture me on my life choices?" he laughed, trying to shrug it off. "Firstly, what I did, it was still work and I'll bet you I had to deal with more crappy people than you do right now. Secondly, I'm working in a mail room, actually."
"Yeah, its shit work for even worse pay but it's a job, right? And hey, it's for a law firm, so I bet I'm having to deal with as many douchebags as you are."
"Fuck, you in a real job? Do you have to get up in the morning and everything?"
"No, I'm just allowed to waltz in at noon. Yes, Mike, every morning, six AM."
"Shit, sorry, I didn't think, you should get some sleep."
"Don't be an idiot. You called and I'm going to talk to you, tell me what's up. You wouldn't have called me for nothing."
"It's just... everything is harder than I expected, okay? I don't think I can do it." Mike's breathing sounded slightly shuddery and Trevor suddenly needed to be there with him but he couldn't.
"It's alright, fuck, of course you can do it!"
"No! I can't! There's this guy that seems to have it out for me for some reason and he's just a dick and there's a junior partner that hates Harvey so seems to hate me by default and I just can't... I can't do anything right and-"
"Shit, Mike, calm down. Take a deep breath." Trevor was quickly reminded of highschool, the way people had said some really nasty shit to Mike, because, of course, they were jealous. He was a genius, he could sit there and just stare at the board all year and get straight As (except in Art class, that was his one weakness) and people just didn't like him for it.
He remembered the day he'd walked down the hall and he'd seen two guys pinning Mike up against his locker, threatening him to make him do their homework. He remembered how that was the first time he'd really gotten in trouble for anything more than sheer laziness. He remembered how, despite everything he'd said, the principal just hadn't thought that kicking two guys in the faces as they lay on the floor apologising was a good way to behave, no matter which circumstances.
The way Mike sounded now was the way he'd sounded back then, scared and alone. There had been that night when Mike had finally admitted that everything at school bothered him, that the way he shrugged it off was just an act. He'd told Trevor how hard it was, how he couldn't cope and that had been their first time doing pot together. It wasn't the drugs that had helped, not really. If it was, Mike probably wouldn't be calling him now, he would have just been able to get drunk or something.
"It'll be okay, man. This isn't... it isn't highschool."
"Well it fucking feels like it sometimes."
"It isn't. Some people are just jerks and there's nothing you can do about that. But, shit, Mike, you're a good guy. People like you. You don't have anything to worry about."
"That's easy for you to say. You always know how to deal with people."
"Do I? Really? Just because it gets them to shut up, doesn't mean it's a good way to deal with them, Mikey."
He couldn't hear sniffing now. Fuck, he wanted to jump in a cab and go over there. He wanted to hold him and tell him everything was going to be okay but Mike didn't even know he was back in town.
"I know but... it's so hard. I don't even... I don't even have you."
Part of him wanted to tell him that he was the one that had made him leave but he knew it wasn't his fault, not really. Trevor knew how people saw him, as an anchor, someone so dependent on Mike that he dragged him down, never letting him succeed. It wasn't true, not entirely. He did depend on Mike, probably more than anyone would ever know but they needed each other. As he sat there listening to his best and only real friend crying on the end of the phone, he missed him more than he ever had.
"Mikey, it's okay. Really, it is. I'm always on the end of the phone."
"It's not the same, I need you. I need... I need us, Trev."
He couldn't say anything to that. He just... he knew things couldn't be like they used to be, not for a while at least. Trevor had been trying to sort things out so he could go back, but for now, they had to stay like this. He'd stopped dealing and he'd been clean for a week now. It hadn't been too hard but Mike and his relationship revolved so much around pot that he could barely imagine spending a night with him without it.
"I know, man. Soon, okay? I've cleaned up, I swear. I'm not even using right now."
Trevor tried not to think about how his whole life seemed to be about Mike right now, but it always had been, really. Right now, he was sorting his life out, just so he could continue hanging out with him for a night a week. He hadn't even called Jenny, hadn't even thought about getting her back.
It had always been like this. He'd started dealing when Mike's Gram had medical bills to pay. Mike didn't speak to him for three days after he'd forced him to take the money, but they didn't have much choice. Deep down, he knew that was why Mike had never voiced any real complaints about his dealing, until he started to worry that he might get hurt.
"I just don't know what to do."
"You need to calm down. You'll feel better about it in the morning, I swear. It's all going to be fine, Mike."
"Okay..." He sounded sad, but better. He wasn't crying, which was a plus sound. "Thanks for listening to me, man."
"Don't be stupid, of course I listened."
"I know just... I love you, okay?"
"Dude, I am rolling my eyes at you right now." He knew Mike knew what he meant by that. He loved him too, but then again, everyone loved Mike from the moment they met him. It was impossible not to.
"Yeah. I know. I'm going to get some sleep. Sorry for keeping you up."
"No problem, any time."
They hung up and Trevor sighed. He wondered how long it would be until he could see Mike again and what they'd do. They'd probably just end up hanging out without pot and it would be fine. They'd done it before, when they'd been short on cash and supplies. It wasn't as fun, but it still beat anything else. His phone buzzed as he put it back on the side. One new message:
Really, thanks. Means a lot to me.
Trevor sighed and typed out a quick reply:
Just this once, okay? If you tell anyone, I will kill you and then never speak to you again. I don't have dead people for friends. I love you too.
Mike sent back a reply quickly:
I know :)
Trevor always got the last word:
Goodnight Mikey x