A/N: So, to recap the last chapter, Paul and John have just been caught in a rather, erm, "compromising" situation by Ringo and George.
Will it get resolved? Read on to find out! :)
I felt a wave of nausea rush through me and had to close my eyes very tightly to avoid throwing up all over the bed which seemed to feel so much dirtier than it had moments ago. We had thought we were being so careful.
"Could you two, uh—" John was at a loss for words, which hadn't happened in a long, long time. Ringo and George nodded, both of them now steadily turning a vibrant shade of red after the initial white of shock. They backed out the door and couldn't seem to shut it fast enough.
I dashed around the room in search of my rather hastily discarded clothes. I could practically feel the heat waves pouring off my skin. "John, what are we gonna do?" I hissed, hopping around the room, attempting to pull on my jeans.
"I... I don't know," said John, yanking his t-shirt over his head and rubbing the back of his neck insistently, as he always did when he was worried or thinking. I suspected that both were taking place in his head.
"Are you okay?" I asked, tugging my shirt on and sitting on the bed beside him. He nodded, but the hunched angle of his shoulders and his pale complexion suggested otherwise. "We'll figure it out," I said, rubbing his back and kissing his temple gently. "We always do."
"I hope so," he said heavily, as though the weight of the world had suddenly dropped onto his shoulders. "I hope so."
I got to my feet and walked over to the door to open it. Ringo and George were sitting on the couch, looking at a total loss for what to do or say. "Lads?" I called. Their heads snapped around and they got up to come into the bedroom. I sat down again on the bed next to John and they sat on the chairs around the small table in the room.
For a long moment, there was absolute silence in the room as everyone waited for someone else to start speaking. Finally, Ringo blurted out, "How?" Of all the possible questions either one of them could have asked this was second in awkwardness only to, "Why?"
George added, "And when?" John cleared his throat loudly, searching for the right words in the ceiling, as though they might drop down from there and into his head.
"Right around when John was sick," I said, pulling at the hem of my shirt like I was trying to anchor myself to something.
A light seemed to click on in George's head. "So that's why..." he trailed off and I knew exactly what he was talking about.
"Uh, yeah. That's why I got sick," I admitted. George bit his lip and looked away, obviously feeling a bit strange about the whole thing.
"But how?" Ringo asked. "Neither of you are... are..."
"Queer?" supplied John bluntly. Subtlety never was a strong virtue of his. Ringo flushed and nodded.
"I don't think we thought that we were either, but it's just one of those things that kind of happen, you know?" I said, trying to smooth out John's more than rough comment.
"No, I don't know," George said, and I could tell that this was really unsettling to him. I suppose I couldn't blame him.
"It's just like falling in love with a girl, but it's another bloke," I said, trying fruitlessly to explain.
"Look, the pair of you are trying to explain this away like it's nothing, and to be perfectly honest, it's not just nothing. We've just walked in on our two best mates shagging like rabbits and you're pretending it's all fine?" George burst out.
"George—" I started, but he got up and stormed out of the room. A suffocating silence settled in like a big blanket.
Ringo shrugged helplessly and got up to leave. Tears stung my eyes. Of all the people we hoped would be understanding, it was George and Ringo. I couldn't tell with Ringo, but George had taken it none too well.
I fell across John's lap. "So, what do we do now?" he asked, running his fingers through my hair softly. I didn't have an answer for him.
My head was just reeling in circles. I supposed that it would be hard for George and Ringo to wrap their heads around something like that, but I didn't know they would take it so badly.
Quietly, I snuck out into the main part of the hotel room and plopped down on the couch. My guitar was leaning on the end table and I picked it up. I began to play nonsensical chords, hoping to clear my head a bit. As you might imagine, it didn't really help.
Some time later, Ringo came into the room and sat down in the armchair opposite me. "Hi," he said quietly.
I didn't look up or stop playing. "Hi," I responded emotionlessly.
"Look, I'm really sorry about George's outburst and my leaving," he said, fumbling desperately for the right words. "It's just a bit much to wrap our heads around, y'know? One moment, you think your mates are straight, and the next..." he made a vague gesture to express his loss of words on the subject. "Well, you can imagine that it's a lot to take in."
"Yeah," I agreed, I just thought that, y'know, you would sort of understand. Even a little bit."
"Well, I get the fact that you guys obviously seem to love each other," Ringo said. "Even if I don't really understand how. I think George is mostly worried that it'll ruin the band. Music is all he's ever wanted to do since he was a lad." I nodded in understanding.
"It won't," I said. "Work and pleasure are two different things and both Paul and I know that."
"I sort of figured you two would be able to, you know, work it out," said Ringo, still looking extremely awkward. "I mean, you're not going to, uh—"
"Make out in the studio, or anywhere within eyeshot of you two?" I asked, smirking. Ringo turned a vibrant shade of red and refrained from comment. "We'll try to keep any 'public snogging' to a minimum, I promise."
"Cor, this is just so bloody weird," he plunked his head back against the chair. "I think I'm fine with it, but at the same time I don't really know—" I held up my hands to cut off his confused rambling.
"Jesus, Rich, shut your mouth for a second, will ya?" I joked. "You don't have to be totally fine with it all of a sudden. I'm pretty sure I bloody well wouldn't be if I walked in on you and George getting it on." His eyes just about popped out of his head.
"We'll just see how things work out, yes?" he said, getting up.
"I guess so," I said, rumpling up my already rumpled hair.
Ringo stopped mid-stride. "Um, John, do Cynthia and Jane know?"
I shook my head no. "Nope. Before you say anything, yeah, I know we need to tell them. It's just going to be hard, you know?" He winced in sympathy and I was once again left alone.
I picked up my guitar and softly began to sing:
Oh yeah, I'll tell you something
Not sure if you'll understand
When I say that something
I wanna hold Paul's hand...
A/N: So, there's still some resolving to do, yes? I take any ideas you might have into consideration, because at the moment I'm not quite sure where to take it from here.
This chapter is dedicated to a very special Beatle on the day after what would have been his 72nd birthday. I meant to post it yesterday, but as I've said a million and one times, life is what happens. Happy (late) Birthday, John. Wish you could be here to celebrate it.
PS: The lyrics are somewhat sort of stolen from TheCrazyViolist. I probably should have asked her first, so if you read this, CrazyV, I'm sorry!