Julie and Karen. This is for you two, a dedication for your unwavering support, motivation and honest opinions. You two are dear to me, and I'll never stop and try to gain your trust in my stories and satisfy your cravings for smut.
Another ending, one that is really close to my heart. Oh, how I adored Motivate Me from the very start. I remember struggling with the first chapter. I was at the start of my fresh break up, I cried all day and felt like a zombie running on alcohol and cooking programs. But, after three weeks, I somehow managed to get myself together and do something about it.
This story has been a support. It gave me an opportunity to forget about my pain and forced me to do something with my emotions rather than bawl and cry like a little girl. It made me think about things and excited to post and see your reactions. It has given me so much, and now that it is over, I can only look back and think that this is my entire grief process. So, I think it'll be hard to let go, and that might explain why I have been dreading to write the ending.
But, I dare not to disappoint you, my dear readers. Like they say, all good must come to an end, and so must MM. It'll open new doors for me, offer other opportunities and knowing I have finished this with a clear conscious, I can move towards working on my own original novel.
As for all of you, I thank you, from the bottom of my heart. You stuck with me through the rants, the drunken prattle and anger. For now, let's take one last trip down the Bayou.
Heavens waiting on down the tracks - Bruce Springsteen, Thunder Road.
Ciel fidgeted nervously with his hands. He'd tug at his tight jeans, than put his hands back in his lap. He'd curl them around his mug of lukewarm hot chocolate, and then ran them through his navy hair.
It had been two weeks since they had been disqualified from the competition. Two weeks of visitations from Sebastian, all strictly supervised by a foul looking Vincent. Fourteen days of medication, prescribed and fed to him by his aunt who never failed to poke him about the progress of his relationship. Three hundred thirty-six hours of his mother's incessant worrying and homemade pastries. Ciel was more than glad that he got as finally declared healthy enough to leave the premises.
He shoved the sleeve of his denim shirt up and checked the time. It was still fifteen minutes too early and he had already been sitting there for over half an hour. Sighing, he straightened his sleeve, cupped his cheek in his hand and gazed out the window. Outside, snowflakes started to whirl out of the navy gray sky. At first, he could easily count them to keep himself occupied, but soon, the mild shower turned into a wintry blizzard.
When the impatient waitress came around, he ordered another hot chocolate and a piece of warm apple and fig crumble to satisfy the grumpy old harpy. She left quickly to frown at the teenagers who were shooting spitballs at the Elvis Presley pictures that covered half the walls of the diner.
Shoveling around on the worn light blue cushions, he tugged at his jeans and bend forward to check if there was anything between his teeth in the chrome napkin dispenser.
"You look good, don't worry about that."
Ciel yelped involuntarily and harshly bit his tongue before turning in his seat. Sebastian smirked lopsided, his eyes twinkling with delight. "How are you doing?"
"Hi," breathed Ciel with a sheepish grin. He got to his feet and gave the taller male a clumsy hug. "I'm fine. It's good to see you without the parental authority looming over our shoulder," he said while sinking back into his seat.
"Very," Sebastian confirmed with a sly grin and tugged his leather jacket off. After sliding into the booth and brushing the snowflakes of the shawl collar of his sweater, he looked up and offered Ciel a charming smile. "How have you really been doing?"
"I've been-" Ciel stopped when the waitress dropped a plate of cobbler in front of him and set his mug of chocolate milk down with a loud thud.
"Your order," she added dryly before turning to Sebastian and retrieving her notepad from her apron and her pencil form behind her ear. "Can I get you anything?"
"I'd like a pint of pale lager and," he reached over the table and picked the menu out of its holder, studied it for a moment and ordered a hamburger with extra bacon and cheese and a large portion of fries and union rings. He chortled at Ciel's raised eyebrow and explained it with a simple. "I'm famished," and his eyes rolled to the cobbler. "May I?"
"Sure," Ciel shrugged and pushed the steaming pie Sebastian's way. "Don't think I can eat or drink anything hot anytime soon," said he will slowly running his painful tongue over his front teeth.
Before gulfing down the entire piece in one, Sebastian looked up and arched an eyebrow. "Because?" He asked, his voice laced with the same concern he had spoken with the past two weeks.
"Just bit my tongue. Nothing serious," Ciel said and waved his hand to pass it off as nothing. Sebastian put his fork down, leaned forward and cupped Ciel's chin. "Let me see."
A bit stunned, Ciel opened his mouth. "Stick out your tongue," Sebastian ordered gently and the younger male followed without further question. Sebastian sucked air through his teeth and clacked his own tongue. "Looks like a nasty bit, maybe this will help," he said and leaned in.
"Sebastian, what are you-" Ciel's question was muffled when Sebastian sucked his tongue into his mouth and gently brushed his own against it. For a moment, Ciel was too shocked to respond, but soon after, he leaned in and eagerly returned the unexpected kiss. That was, until his rational side made him pull back with a sinful blush splattered over his cheeks.
"What are you doing?" He hissed while looking left and right. "What if somebody sees us? This faux pas could be tomorrows' new headline in every newspaper."
Sebastian shrugged, sat back and rammed his fork into the pie, unnecessarily molesting it before bringing a bite to his lips. "I don't care anymore," stated he before stuffing the pastry between his lips and chewing violently. "This is really good," he mumbled, not so subtly changing the subject.
"What has gotten into you?" Ciel asked while picking up his mug. "This is not like you, kissing in public and not caring that the entire diner is staring at us like we're vermin."
"Let them," Sebastian answered and tore another bit of the cobbler. "Want whipped cream?"
"Want whipped cream with your cobbler? Because you really need to taste this," he went on and bluntly dunked the bit into the dot of whipped cream and held in front of Ciel's mouth. "Fruity," he said with a sheepish grin.
"You're ignoring the subject," Ciel pointed out. Sebastian waved it away with a soft pfft and persistent held up the fork. "Come on," he pushed. Rolling his eyes, Ciel leaned in and closed his lips around the bite. He was right, it was very good cobbler.
"You've got some whipped cream," said Sebastian and bend over the table. "Sebas-" Ciel fell silent when the raven haired male slowly licked the whipped cream off his lip. After losing all sense of reality for another moment, Ciel shoved his hand in Sebastian's face and pushed him back. "What has gotten into you?"
"We haven't seen each other without a chaperon for two weeks. I missed this, didn't you?" He asked and feigned a hurt pout. Ciel twitched, shook his head and laughed. "It's not that, it's just…" He once again kept his mouth while the waitress came by and placed a loaded plate in front of Sebastian's nose. Without even as much as a thank you, he dug in and sank his teeth in the enormous burger. "Than what is it?" He asked between chewing and jugged back half his pint before brutally attacking the bun again.
"It's like you don't care if anybody will see us like this," Ciel said carefully and threw a cautious look around the diner before continuing in a softer tone of voice. "All the objections you used to have about people knowing you're not the womanizer they think you are. It's almost as if they're gone."
Sebastian's jaws slowed down and he chewed thoroughly while putting the violated burger down. Sliding his hand over the table, he covered Ciel's and looked him in the eye. "I do not care about that anymore. I told you that just now."
Ciel gasped, obviously taken back by Sebastian's words and the determination with which he had spoken them. Briefly, the navy haired male was lost for works and could just stare into the calm crimson eyes. He sucked his bottom lip between his teeth and let his eyes wander around the small restaurant. Nobody was paying any real attention to them, or they were very good at hiding it. He couldn't spot telephones or cameras that were kept at ready to take a picture once he turned his attention away. Everything was normal and real life kept going, even after what seemed like a huge confession from the man he loved.
"Why?" Was the first and only word he could produce. Sebastian exhaled a sigh, curled his hand entirely around Ciel's trembling one and used his thumb to rub soothing circles on the sweaty palm.
"Because being with you these past two weeks without having to worry about our career, the press or anything that is remotely related to it made me realize… I treated you so badly, but I was too focused on getting back at the top again, and didn't stop to consider what my foolish actions did to you or the dynamics in the band. I am sorry."
Ciel arched an eyebrow. It had been the things he had wanted to hear all along, but now that they were out in the open, they hung over him like a cloud of guilt. "It wasn't just your fault," he admitted. "I was expecting too much, even though you already made it clear that you wanted to keep our private business out of the media."
"Had I not been that obsessed with glory and fame, things might've gone different," he said through gritted teeth. Ciel saw him turn his eyes to the table and he knew Sebastian was thinking about William. "Had not been that blinded-"
"No Sebastian," said Ciel, shaking his head in a reassuring manner. "That was not your fault. I was drunk and William was there. He took advantage of a very delicate situation and I let him, pure out of ungrounded jealousy."
"I have to confess that I was mad beyond repair. I was disgusted and despised you for unreasonable reasons. But after you fell ill and I got this unbearable fear of losing you, I came to realize that had I not been acting like the uptight prick I was because I used my parents their incapability to love me to keep you at bay, you might not have gotten drunk like that," Sebastian pointed out and jugged back another large gulp of lager. The contradiction between his words and actions made Ciel chortle soft. "But had that not happened, we might not be here right now, talking about our relationship."
"Quite the observation," Sebastian grinned and downed his pint. "Hang on while I get another, you want something?" Ciel shook his head and waved his hand. "I'm good, thanks." Sebastian smiled, shoveled over the cushions and got up. "Help yourself to anything if you're hungry," he offered, gesturing to the loaded plate.
Ciel nodded, produced a soft mhmm and picked a crunchy looking union ring from the platter. Now that they were finally discussion their obstacles, he felt his heart was racing and it seemed to even skip a beat every now and then. He angled his head and scrutinized Sebastian's back. He leaned calmly on the bar and seemed to flatter the foul looking waitress with sweet nothings; got her to smile and even to giggle like a schoolgirl. It irritated him immensely but he kept from displaying a dramatic tantrum over it. When Sebastian walked back, all eyes in the diner seemed to follow him, attracted to his looks and fame like moths to a bug lamp.
"There," Sebastian placed his beer on the table and smoothly slid back into his seat. "Since we are talking about our relations, there is one thing I always wanted to ask but never bothered. You were in therapy and all and…" Sebastian trialed off when he saw Ciel's smile. "What?"
"I wondered when you were going to ask me about that. I'm surprised it took you this long," Ciel said, curling his hands around his now lukewarm chocolate. "The answer is yes. What happened back than has influenced my personality. More than I care to admit."
"What happened?" Asked Sebastian, not even minding his peckish feeling and completely ignoring his fresh beer. "Your mother has told me some of it…"
Ciel nodded. "I know she did. She almost has this convulsive obsession with that part of my history. I was in an accident, in his drunken rage, my boyfriend tried to take the wheel and steered us straight off road and into a rock-face… it has scarred me, deeply. Especially when his bleeding dead corpse slumped against my body and all I could do was wait for the ambulance and firemen to arrive. I regret that I never took the time to fully declare my feelings for him, and that night has tainted my future love life a great deal; I guess it made me more vulnerable and desperate to let the other person know that I care, you know, before it was too late," he looked up with a sheepish smile. "I am sorry for letting it interfere with what we have. You're not Dagger, even if you went ahead and come to my house, dead drunk. You are not him and I try to fully trust that you will never put me in that kind of a situation."
Sebastian nodded slow and gave Ciel's trembling hand a squeeze. "I am sorry, Ciel. I am sorry for ever putting you in the position where you thought you needed to prove anything. I know you care, and I wish I had been a little more open and appreciative of that. I treated you badly, even if all I ever really wanted was to be near you since that day I saw you bump your nose against your locker." Those words made Ciel roll his eye and chuckle, it made Sebastian smile at how happy he looked.
"I guess we were both a bit foolish. Rushing into something so passionate without properly thinking about or discussing the consequences," admitted Ciel. A calm smirked formed around Sebastian's lips and he spoke in an animated tone. "But I reckon it is not very romantic to sit down and each discuss your fucked up memories before rushing into something passionate," he teased with his honey-like voice. Ciel could only shake his head at that and had to take a sip of chocolate milk to settle his rising hormones.
"But what do we do now?"
Sebastian blinked, thrown of his seductive balance at the simple words that could determine their entire future. He picked up a chip, put it between his lips and sat back, chewing and grinding those words over. "What do we do now," he repeated slow, almost as if in a trance.
"I think it is best to keep up our charades and continue what we have been doing all along. You are right, the world is not ready for homosexuality to enter the country music business and if we want to truly make it out there, it is best to save our true selves under cover. I hate to see everything we worked for fall apart because of some teenage trauma."
Sebastian chuckled a little, it seemed to come from far. As if he was lost in deep thought. His entire body jerked in surprise when he felt his phone vibrate in his pants pocket. He reached, checked the number and contemplated about not picking up for a second. Curiosity got the better of him and he raised a finger at Ciel. "Just a minute," and he shoved his thumb over the screen. "What do you want, Faustus?"
Ciel looked away, trying to give Sebastian some privacy instead of audaciously staring at him while he was on the phone. When he felt Sebastian's hand squeeze his own a couple of times, he turned back and was surprised by the sparkle in his crimson eyes. "We're having a press conference tomorrow about the competition," he said, grinning broadly. Ciel smiled, automatically enthusiastic by Sebastian's excitement. "Yes, Claude. We will go over the details tonight, I promise," Sebastian mumbled into the phone and rolled his eyes at Ciel, adding a playful wink after. It made the younger male beam with newfound interest in this careless side of Sebastian and possibly made him love his lead singer even more.
"Will do, Claude. I have to go, we will pick up some dinner on the way home. Yes, no detours, I promise. See you in a bit." He hung up, stood and retrieved his wallet and dropped some cash on the table. "How did you get here?"
"My mother brought me over. They seem to believe that you can't drive after a pneumonia."
"Well, get your coat and call her when we arrive at my place," said Sebastian while shrugging on his jacket. "You're driving," he concluded and placed his set of keys in Ciel's hand. Following his orders, Ciel put his grey overcoat and loosely draped his blue scarf around his neck. He chortled, rolled his eyes and told Sebastian he looked like his mother when the male wrapped the thick wool closely around his nape and tied a tight knot in it. "She's right, I wouldn't want you sick and back to ordered bed rest again," he lectured.
Outside, the cold wind immediately blew a gust of snowflakes in their eyes. Ciel followed Sebastian down the sidewalk and up a steep stairs. Half way, he had to stop to catch his breath. He waved away Sebastian's offer to carry him, thinking it would be too awkward. After a minute, he smiled and nodded, signaling that they could continue their struggle up the steps. Sebastian asked him again to be sure, and after a firm conformation, he took Ciel's hand in his own and walked on.
At the top, on a nearly deserted parking lot, stood Mary. Ciel had never been more happy to slide into a drivers' seat, it strangely felt like coming home. He started the engine and was nearly blasted away by the Scissor Sisters. He arched an eyebrow at Sebastian and he just shrugged and laced his hand behind his head. "Just drive," he said and closed his eyes.
On the way to the house, they stopped at a tiny supermarket and bought some frozen pizzas, juice and a pack of mixture Ciel swore he and Alois would turn into delicious brownies. "But not the funny kind," he added firm while putting a jar of peanut butter and chocolate chips into the cart. "Do you have whipped cream at home?" Sebastian shook his head and watched with delight while Ciel pulled products from shelves and it felt good to do these regular things together without having to worry about his image. He could easily ignore the stares and the suspicious eyes of the shop owner that burned in their backs when they walked out, Ciel's hand secure in Sebastian's.
They hadn't even parked yet when Alois already came running up the car. When the engine died, the blonde yanked the door open and hurled himself at Ciel with a loud squeal. "It is so good to see you up and going again," he peeped delighted and planted kisses all over his friends face. Sebastian cleared his throat and leaned, pushing the pushy blonde back with the warning that his queer germs might infect Ciel again. Alois stuck out his tongue, told the older male he was a snarky nag and jumped out of the car in time to avoid Sebastian's flailing arm.
Claude looked up from his notepad and gave them a nod to acknowledge their presences. "He is on the phone again, has been all day. He never makes time for me anymore," said Alois, adding a longing pout. Claude easily ignored it by turning in his seat, crossed an ankle over his knee and tapped his shoes with his pen. Alois rolled his eyes, snorted and jolted to the cooking island. "What did you get?"
"Pizza and this," Ciel rummaged through the paper bag and retrieved the package of brownie mixture. Alois beamed bright and opened his mouth, Ciel beat him to it. "No funny brownies, I recently recovered from a bad pneumonia." Alois shrugged his shoulders. "Fair enough. Sebastian, where do you keep your baking materials."
The male opened the fridge, bend down and retrieved two bottles of beer. "No idea. Try the pantry," he said and walked to the dining table. "Perfect," Alois quipped, grabbed Ciel's hand and dragged him to the adjacent pantry. Sebastian took this time to pull the phone out of Claude's hands, tell the person on the other side he'd call back and hung up.
"What the fuck? Do you know who that was?" Claude fumed. Sebastian opened the bottles with his Zippo, handed one to Claude and nodded to the backyard. "We need to talk."
Claude knitted his brows together, stood and followed his best friend out without question.
Throwing a look out the window, every now and then, Ciel could only wonder what Sebastian and Claude were discussing. They both looked serious while Sebastian took the lead in conversation and Claude just seemed to listen and nod. Alois was chatting up a storm while mixing the batter in a huge bowl. He too noticed the gravity of the tension between the two males, but he choose to ignore it, knowing full well he would find out sooner or later. "So, what is the current situation between you and Sebastian?"
Ciel snapped his head around, a blush of shame burning on his cheeks that he had only half listened to the ramblings of the blonde. "We talked. About us, about our mistakes and the effect it had," he pursed his lips and thought about it. "I think Sebastian is now more open to the possibility of a more public sort of relationship," he decided. Alois grinned and congratulated him before throwing himself back into battle with the thick and sticky batter. "I told you that if you played your cards right, he would come begging. Didn't think it would take cheating and an illness but fair enough, he is open to a more intimate relationship," he looked up and blew a string of blonde hair out of his eyes. "I am very happy for you, for the both of you."
"Thank you, Alois. For everything," said Ciel and touched the blonde's shoulder for a moment. "I don't know how I would've gotten through all of this had it not been for your friendship."
Alois chuckled. "No need to get all sentimental on me. I hardly did anything more than point out the obvious. Now, what is the function of that jar of peanut butter?"
That night, Ciel stayed over at Sebastian's place. He had called his mother and had gotten into a pointless discussion with his father about morals and values. Eventually, he had screamed I love him and I am staying here into the phone and it had cut his father's useless prattle off. Ciel heard his mother threaten his father in the background and it had made that Vincent finally complied and told him to be safe.
For the second since he had known him, Ciel was lying in Sebastian's bed, curled up against his warm body. There was no tension between them, and it was hard to fathom that there had ever been a time where it was so thick, they could almost touch it. They talked, about little nothings and Sebastian's parents. About the childhood he missed and his forced engagement to Angela. Sebastian seemed to completely open himself up, even dared to be vulnerable while he dragged his long fingers through Ciel's navy colored hair. It was one of the moments he could swear that the rest of world did not matter, that it was maybe even non-existing. He just placed his head on Sebastian's strong chest and listened to a mixture of his honey-like voice and his slow and steady heartbeat until he fell asleep. He did not notice the kiss Sebastian pressed on his hair, and the way he pulled up the covers to cover his bare shoulder. He was far away in a well deserved and dreamless sleep, the kind he hadn't had in years.
The entire room was packed with reports, photographers and camera crews. Ciel had felt sick to his stomach, nervous to the core. It was not his first press conference, but it was the first time that it was broadcasted live, worldwide.
Before going on, Alois told him to just breath. To take a deep breath and let go of the cameras and pressure. To enjoy the moment that they would be making history. It didn't help much, but it rid him of the queasy feeling in his stomach.
There was a modest applause when they walked onto the stage. His father, who had shortly introduced them, tapped him on the shoulder and winked, silently wishing him good luck before disappearing behind the scenes.
The questions were nothing they weren't used to. As usual, Claude took it upon himself to answer most, and he did a wonderful job at it. Sebastian slugged in his seat, his eyes almost focused on his glass of water while he tapped his fingers on the red tablecloth. Ciel looked sideways every now and then, worry drawing his face while Sebastian seemed to become a little more anxious with every passing question.
"Yes, Arthur Randall for the New York Times. We heard that the record label that organized the Country competition was willing to offer you a contract, despite your disqualification. Is this true?"
"That is correct, but we are yet to accept this generous offer. We have been with the Phantomhive record label since the start, thus switching labels is a more personal matter for us," answered Claude.
"Ronald Knox for Rolling stone magazine. What are you going to do now that your band has a name amongst the great country legends?"
Claude angled his head, offered his best friend a knowing smile and a nod. "I Sebastian should answer this question, for all of us," he added. It made Alois and Ciel exchanged a clueless frown before focusing their attention on the raven haired male in the middle. Sebastian took a deep breath and a sip of water after. The minor suspension he created rendered the entire room silent.
"You know. These have been very interesting weeks. Over a thousand hours, I have been presenting a most complicated puzzle, lies and truth all mixed up," he turned his head and looked to his right. Ciel's blue eye was confused, or even a little suspicious. Sebastian smiled and snapped his head back to the mass of reporters. "Shortly after we met, I began to fall in love with Ciel Phantomhive."
A gasp rose in the room. Alois looked at most bewildered and Ciel's jaw slowly dropped. Sebastian raised a hand, palm out to command silence and continued. "I have been a fool, choosing this bands fame over my own feelings and hurting many people in that process. With this said, I would also like to announce that I am retreating myself from the Funtom Company. I do not wish to be part of a world that does not accept me for who I truly am. I know that there have never been any formal hate accusations in newspapers or magazines, but that is solely because we kept it private, and I do not want to do that anymore. I'd rather spend my time with the man I love, than living the lie of a famous hypocrite. Thank you," said Sebastian, and stood and calmly walked away, leaving the room disconcerted.
"Claude," Ciel bend over and grabbed his sweater. "You have to fucking do something," he hissed, careful not the let the reporters overhear. "You have to get him back and make him tell it was a joke." Claude raised an eyebrow and shook his head. "No Ciel, he did this for you, and I fully agree and support him," said he and got up and walked away too.
Helpless, Ciel turned to Alois. The blonde seemed to be lost for words as well, but he quickly recovered himself, got up and leaned on the table, his lips close to his own microphone. "We, as a their friends, fully support both Ciel and Sebastian in whatever decision they wish to make and are nothing be rejoiced for them. That was all, thank you," and he jerked his head to Ciel, ordering him to follow. With a blush of both embarrassment and excitement splattered across his cheeks, the navy haired male left the stage without a word.
Backstage, Ciel learned that Sebastian had already left. When he demanded his father's car keys, Claude told him it would be better to leave him for a moment. "This is a huge deal for him, the biggest sacrifice he ever made. I think he needs some time to get his head together."
Turning to Alois for help was fruitless, for once, even the blonde agreed with what his partner had said. "He's right. He gave up a blossoming career to prove to you how much he loves you. I think he needs his time to mourn."
Ciel knitted his brows together. "But I never asked him to do that!" He spat, flailing his arms around. "All I wanted was to be with him, but if he has to give up his career for that, I couldn't ask such a thing of him."
Claude stepped forward and looming over him, he rendered Ciel silent. "You are more important to him, and I am glad he finally sees that."
Ciel dropped his chin to his chest and sucked on his bottom lip. "But what about you guys? The band? We cannot just give up now that we are on our way to the top."
"We will be fine," Alois assured him and wrapped an arm around his friend. "Just because Sebastian decided to end this career, doesn't mean this opens doors to new options. We'll manage and fight our way back. Him quitting a band has never stopped us before," he added with a wink and it made Ciel chuckle and nod in agreement. "In the meanwhile, all Claude and I want is for you two to be happy. Love and happiness is worth so much more than a lonely career."
"I guess," Ciel wavered and rolled his eye up to Claude. "You two were discussing this yesterday, weren't you?"
"We were, and even though I hate to see him give up on another fruitful career, I could completely understand his motivations. It might not look like it, but I would do anything for that blonde idiot as well" said Claude and gently punched his arm in a friend-like manner. "Now, let's go and toast to what must be the shortest, successful career in the history of country music."
Early next morning, Ciel drove up to Sebastian's house. His eyebrows shot up in surprise when he saw a for sale sign at the beginning of the lane. Driving up to the front porch, he saw Sebastian walking to his car, carrying a backpack and a box of records. The crimson eyes peered over the edge of the wayfarers and briefly crossed with Ciel's while he parked his car and cut off the engine.
"Morning," he said, walking the gravel lane. Sebastian placed the items in his trunk and closed it with a loud thud. He turned, sat on the trunk and crossed his arms. "Morning," he greeted with a broad smile. It struck Ciel that he looked exactly like the day they met at his university, the comfortable worn jeans, vest and white shirt with rolled up sleeves. It caused a very pleasant shiver down his spine. "Going somewhere?"
Sebastian nodded. "Last night, I bought a penthouse in New York, close to Alois and Claude. They're already on their way back with Bard, both Bard's," he said with a sly grin.
"That is a bit unexpected and rushed," Ciel said while he halted in front of him. "Were you even going to tell me?"
Sebastian retrieved a smoke, lit it with his Zippo and clicked it shut. "It was a spur of the moment thing, and as a matter of fact," he pulled Ciel between his legs and wrapped his arms around his waist. "I was on my way to come and ask if you'd like to come with me."
"To New York?" Ciel exclaimed. "What are you planning on doing there?"
"I have no idea yet. All I know is that I want to leave Memphis and start somewhere new, with you preferably."
"What about my parents? My life here? You expect me to just drop everything and go with you, especially after what you did yesterday."
Sebastian inhaled a huff of tobacco. "As a matter of fact, I do. But, to give you some time to give it some consideration, I planned to take a road trip first, see," he retrieved a map from his back pocket and unfolded it.
"Where would we go?"
"Anywhere," Sebastian said with a playful wink. Ciel couldn't help but chuckle at the reference and angled his head to study the other male's profile. "Are we going to talk about yesterday?"
"In good time, we will," Sebastian answered. "All I can tell you right now is that it seemed like my best option, and I am glad I made it. This opens up other opportunities you might've never thought off."
Ciel arched an eyebrow, a bit rattled at how easy Sebastian made it all seem. Hours ago, he threw away a very lucrative career and now, he was talking about road trips and new options. It seemed too idyllic, and for once, Ciel tried to go along with it. "New York?"
"Suppose I never thought about a rock career before," Ciel shrugged.
Sebastian grinned wide, folded the map and pushed it in his back pocket. "Is that a yes?"
Ciel made a quick summary of the past weeks. All the pain he had felt, his desire to be with Sebastian and the pressure the forced secrecy had placed on their relationship. Looking in his crimson eyes, Ciel leaned in and placed his lips against Sebastian's. "Motivate me."
Sebastian smirked and let the younger male drag him into a leisurely kiss. "Get in the car and allow the road to be our redemption."
Without giving it a second thought, Ciel walked to the passengers' seat and slammed the door. He'd call his parents on the road, but it did not matter right now. Sebastian started the engine, allowing Bruce Springsteen's voice to fill the car with an ultimate road song. They looked at each other. "Are you sure?" Sebastian asked. Ciel nodded. "Positive, let's chase that dusty road."
Sebastian smirked, reared his car and drove off, leaving behind Memphis, country and all their insecurities.
I am nervous. Terribly nervous and unsettled. I know some of you thought that the ending of 'The Circus Macabre' was too easy and not satisfying enough, although, killing off several crucial characters was not that easy, but.. I can only hope this ending will be to each and everyone's satisfaction.
This is it, the end. They're driving towards better futures and richer dreams. I can only wish you will find the ending as hopeful as I did, clearing the way for me to dare and dream of better days.
It has been a tremendous honor, writing for you all, and I am more than thankful that you stuck with me until the end. Please, leave a review and let me know if you appreciated it. I would be really grateful.
Thank you, all of you.