A.N. Hey readers! The inspiration for this came from the 2012 25th Anniversary of Les Miserables. I based the characters after the novel by Victor Hugo, but the inspiration for the story came from one moment during 'Drink With Me'. Grantaire sings a very bitter verse to remind his friends that in the long run, their deaths might mean nothing. After his verse, he turns to look at Enjolras. They share a significant look and some gentle touches, and then walk off. This instantly sprung to mind. Also, I would like some feedback on the alluded sex-scene. I'm not courageous to write a full-on slash scene yet, but I would like some feedback on what I have. Thanks, and enjoy!
Grantaire allowed himself to be led through the darkened rooms of the ABC Cafè. Behind him, he could hear the voices of his companions as they celebrated life—maybe for the last time. Grantaire felt like screaming. It was as if the boys behind him thought they were invincible. They believed that they would win the revolution, maybe with a few deaths, but with the majority of their group coming out alive. They believed that it would be just like the first battle. And—almost humorously, in a dark and bitter way—they believed that the people of Paris would join them at the barricade.
Grantaire bit back a hollow laugh. He was no naïve school boy, trundling happily through Paris with dreams of greatness. He knew that they had too few of everything—too few weapons, too few bullets, too few men with too little training. They would all be slaughtered. And Grantaire was no fool—he knew that he was going to share their fate. But they didn't need to hear his fears. So he kept a bottle in his mouth and shouted a cynical comment or two, and pretended to be as fearless as the rest. Part of Grantaire wondered why he was here, despite his fears. But he knew—the reason he remained was leading him through the hallways of the café by his sleeve.
Enjolras. His dark-haired Apollo. They had met each other at university, before Grantaire had been hardened by the world. They had spent their days together, debating furiously at the ways of the world, and swearing to each other that they would fight for the people of Paris as soon as they left school. They would become heroes of the revolution. They would be like Alexander the Great and Hephaestion—heroes and warriors. 'Just like Alexander the Great and Hephaestion,' Grantaire thought bitterly. For he had done the unthinkable—he had fallen in love with a god. Untouchable, uncompromisable, and so pure. Enjolras deserved better than him; Grantaire had no illusions about that. So he hid his love in the bottom of the bottle along with his fear. He had slowly and subtly pushed his friend away, until Enjolras only paid attention to Grantaire long enough to ensure that he was where he was supposed to be. In return, Grantaire followed Enjolras faithfully, pretending to support all of his schemes.
'And now half of my secret is out', Grantaire thought bitterly. His friends had been singing that song—that damnable song—about songs and women and life, toasting each other. And Grantaire, his wits loosened with the whiskey, had reminded them. He reminded them that they may not be remembered, that their deaths could be meaningless, that they could just be more names in the list of those who fought the Orléanists and died. The others had turned away, preferring to ignore the man that was more often drunk than not, rather than admit their own fears. But as Grantaire had moved to turn away from the celebrating men, he found himself face-to-face with Enjolras, who was casually leaning on his musket. One look was all it had taken. Enjolras had looked into Grantaire's eyes, and Grantaire knew without a doubt that Enjolras understood finally that Grantaire meant what he had said. Grantaire had turned to run, but before he could, Enjolras had grabbed hold of his arm gently, and spun Grantaire to face him. Enjolras had reached up to stroke Grantaire's cheek with a gentle hand, and Grantaire had tremblingly cupped the back of Enjolras' neck in return. Then, Enjolras gently led him by his arm away from the revolutionaries. Grantiare was jolted from his musings as he and Enjolras stopped in front of a door. It was one of the small rooms that the revolutionaries had rented. He had been sharing it with Enjolras, Combeferre and Joly. However, Grantaire knew that Combeferre would be spending the night with the whores in the café, and Joly would be drinking himself blind. This would give him and Enjolras plenty of time to talk.
"Alright," Enjolras said with a tired sigh. "What was that about?" They were each sitting on their beds, facing each other. Grantaire, however, was having trouble looking at his friend for the first time in his life. After all, people said that the eyes were a window to the soul; and Grantaire definitely didn't want his friend and secret love to see how he truly felt. "Grantaire," Enjolras called out gently, and Grantaire realized that for once he couldn't hide himself away. He had to face his friend.
"If you're looking for an apology, or for me to retract my statement," he began, his voice sounding harsh in the silence, "then you will be waiting a long time."
"Grantaire," Enjolras sighed, and Grantaire winced as if the sound had an edge as sharp as a knife. "I do not want you to apologize, or retract your statement. All I want is the truth." Grantaire wanted so badly to just play it off on the alcohol, like he had done before, but this time the whiskey had the opposite effect than what he had hoped. Instead of allowing him to say what he wanted to, this time the alcohol stopped him from keeping his mouth closed.
"I studied history at university, Enjolras," Grantiare said softly. "I studied the famous revolutions, both those that succeeded and those that failed. And I warn you now—ours will be one of the ones to fail." Enjolras began to object, but Grantiare cut him off before he could voice his complaints. "Please, listen. There are two ways in that a revolution can succeed—either we need the military on our side, or we need the people. The military don't care about our cause. We are opposing the government—one that pays them well, and treats them well. They do not care about democracy; instead, they will shoot us down. As for the people, well…" Grantaire choked out a bitter laugh. "The people of Paris prefer us to the government—that much is obvious. But they will not come to fight at the barricade." Enjolras began do object venomously, but Grantaire stopped him for a second time. "Enjorlas, if they were planning on joining us, they would have been there at the first battle to fight alongside us. Or they would have brought food and bandages to the Café. Or they would have offered us free lodging for the night. Face it Enjorlas—they aren't coming."
Grantaire risked a look at his face, and winced. Enjorlas looked crushed; his face falling like someone had closed a shutter over his heart. Grantaire cursed the alcohol. His intention was never to hurt his Apollo. That beautiful face should never look that unhappy. Grantaire considered crossing the room to stroke his hair, hug him gently and offer what little comfort he could. Still, Grantaire was determined to keep his secret a little while longer.
"Well, if you don't believe that the revolution will succeed—if you think that we will all die—then why are you here? Why didn't you… I don't know, volunteer to spy and just not come back?" Or not. Again, Grantaire tried to stop himself from answering. But it was too late—the words were already slipping out. "Because of you."
Faced with Enjorlas' shocked face, Grantaire instantly tried to back-track. "I'm so sorry, Enjorlas. You know what whiskey does to me. That was not what I meant to say. I think I will try to swap rooms with Marius for the night." Grantaire turned to leave, but Enjorlas moved quickly to stop him.
"That may not have been what you meant to say," Enjorlas said softly. "But it's the truth anyways, isn't it?" Grantaire ducked his head, face flushing in embarrassment. A soft hand reached under his chin to lift his head. Grantaire allowed his head to be raised, and then gasped softly as a pair of lips pressed firmly against his. A gentle tongue took the opportunity to sweetly slip into his open mouth. Grantaire took a moment to enjoy the sensations of his secret love kissing him, and then stepped away from the pleasure.
"Enjorlas," he said firmly. "I may be in love with you…" (and how strange felt to be saying that out loud) "…but I will not let you fuck me out of pity!" Enjorlas sent him a wounded look in response—another look that stabbed Grantaire through the heart.
"I was not going to make love to you out of pity," Enjorlas replied, placing emphasis on the 'make love'. "You seem to think that our revolution will fail—well, I find myself agreeing with you. So tonight, while our comrades are drinking themselves blind and chasing women across the floor, you and I will try to create at least one happy memory to comfort ourselves through tomorrow." And with that, Enjorlas gently pushed Grantaire backwards onto one of the beds.
They were being slaughtered. It had started with brave Gavroche, clambering over the walls of the barricade, sacrificing his life for some extra ammunition for the revolutionaries. Then the fight began in earnest, and Grantaire's dire prediction came true. They were being slaughtered. Joly, Bahorel, Lesgle, Combeferre… each had fallen to the bullets of the soldiers that were storming their weak barricade. Grantaire had smiled to himself as he watched the new volunteer—the one who had asked to kill Javert—carry Marius away from the battle. At least that school boy would be able to grow up in peace with the 'ghost' that he had fallen in love with.
Now, however, it was only himself and Enjorlas defending their barricade. Enjorlas grabbed one of the red revolutionary flags, waving it proudly in a final act of defiance. Grantaire joined him, clasping Enjorlas' free hand in his own. The bullets pierced the pair almost at the same time. They fell behind the barricade, still clutching onto each other. In his last moments, Grantaire looked deep into his lover's eyes, knowing that they were thinking of the same thing:
Soft moans intermingling with the sounds of the wild party down the hall.
Tentative hands grasping, clenching, squeezing, stretching
Lips searching blindly for another set in the darkness
Burning pain, blissful warmth, aching fullness
"Will you remember me when I fall?"