SWW PLOT BUNNY PROMPT COMPETITION.
Title: Remember Us
Number of prompt used: 15
Word Count: 7.700
Summary: Following a head injury, a man suffers from a rather drastic memory loss. It's up to his partner to not only help him remember all he's forgotten about himself, but also what he's forgotten about them, and that he is gay. 2nd place in SWWW Bunny Prompt Competition
Warning: man on man loving
"Garrett!" Tia shouts, bursting in to the waiting room of the hospital.
Everyone gives her nasty looks.
"Yes?" I ask, lifelessly.
"He's waking up!" she tells me excitedly.
I stare blankly at her, because a big part of me wants to believe Tia, a nurse, but I know what Dr. Cullen told me. The chances for my dear Benjamin to wake up were slim––close to none.
I follow her down the now familiar hallway.
I've been a constant presence in the hospital for the past three months, rarely leaving the place.
As I walk behind Tia, who has become my friend over these past few months, I think back on the fateful night that brought Benj here.
We leave the club after one too many drinks. Thankfully, we live close by and I'm not much of a drinker.
Benjamin is trashed. When he starts flirting with half of the men there, I decide to take him home. Maybe the ride will sober him up.
I help him on to my motorcycle, but he has other ideas.
"I always wanted to ride this," he slurs to me.
"Another time, baby. You're drunk."
"The road is empty, but I promise not to leave the parking lot. Please, Garrett?" He's pouting and I'm a sucker for that plump lip jutted out.
"Don't kill yourself," I joke. Before I can offer him the helmet, he's off. "Benjamin! Be careful!" I shout, worried.
He can't even keep the handles right. He's driving in circles almost.
Then he makes a turn for the main road.
"NO! You promised!" I run after him, but it's too late.
A car driving in its own lane with a high speed hits him, throwing him like a rag doll a few feet away.
The adrenaline and alcohol make my heart beat faster as I rush to his side.
His head hits the asphalt, his arm is at an odd angle, and he doesn't seem to be breathing. Blood is pooling from the gash in his head.
"HELP!" I yell, my voice raw. "Someone help! Call 9-1-1!"
The driver comes near me, apologizing, asking, consoling me.
I hug Benjamin's body to my chest, rocking back and forth, sobbing like a baby.
This can't be happening.
We were so happy together.
Just the other day was our fifth anniversary. We exchanged rings that will show us, if not anyone else, that true love knows no limit, sex, race or color. Nothing – just real love.
When the ambulance arrives, the EMT pries my lover from my arms, checking his vitals, talking in hushed voices with the driver. I don't pay attention. I can't.
On the way to the hospital, the EMT gives me a pill to calm me, though it doesn't do much. He tells me that it doesn't look good.
At the hospital, Benjamin is sent to the O.R. and much later, a doctor comes to tell me about his state. I'm informed he's the best doctor the city has. I don't give a fuck. I just want my man alive.
Dr. Cullen tells me that Benjamin is in a coma and he will wake when his body has healed.
And who knows how long that will be? I've heard some people wake from comas after years.
I lose my head once I'm again alone in the waiting room.
I don't know what to do.
There's no family to call.
We were both raised by the system, though I had it tougher than him. I ran away when I was sixteen and lived on the streets.
We have each other.
Ever since we met, we've been inseparable. I can't function without my heart.
Over the next few days I'm introduced to Tia, the nurse.
I mostly live in the hospital, since I'm a writer and I just released my latest book. Yes, no one needs me for at least another few months.
"Remember what we talked about?" Tia whispers, stopping me outside the room. "He had a severe head injury. He might not remember you. Don't lose the faith. I've seen this before. He'll come around."
I smile tightly.
I can't think of Benj not recognizing me.
"Thank you." I hug her. She should have gone home to her family, but she stayed for me. She's not even wearing her nurse clothes.
Tia opens the door and I step inside. Dr. Cullen is checking the monitor. Nothing unusual there.
What's new is that Benjamin is sitting up, looking with his curious, huge, black eyes at the door – at me.
"Benjamin, baby!" I gasp, hurrying to his side.
He frowns and withdraws before I can reach him.
"I'm afraid your friend is suffering from amnesia. He can't remember anything, not even his name," Dr. Cullen explains.
It feels like I've been punched in the gut. Hard.
I sit on the edge of the bed and stare at my lover.
He's still frowning, but not at me. This time he's looking at Tia.
"Are you my girlfriend?"
She comes to stand behind me, a hand on my shoulder. "Sorry to disappoint, but no. I'll leave Garrett here to explain everything to you. My husband's waiting for me at home." She winks and leaves with Dr. Cullen.
It's awkward as fuck.
"Who are you?" Benjamin asks in a hoarse voice.
"Would you like some water, baby?" I jump to grab him a glass of water.
He nods, watching me. "Why do you keep calling me that? Who are you?"
I hand him the fresh water and sit back next to him. "My name is Garrett. I'm your boyfriend."
He chokes and I freak, ready to call Dr. Cullen, but he calms quickly. "My, WHAT?"
Oh, fuck's sake!
"Are you joking now? It isn't funny, Benjamin! Not one bit!"
"Is Benjamin my name?" he whispers softly. His eyes are curious and confused.
He really doesn't know.
I want to rip my hair out.
This is entirely my fault.
Why did I allow him to ride my bike?
"Benjamin, we live together in a small apartment. I am your boyfriend. You're gay. You love me." I show him my ring, since they took his off when they brought him in. "Look. Remember when we exchanged them in honor of the love we have for each other?"
"I'm sorry. This is crazy. I can't be gay. I don't know you."
Those words break my heart all over again.
"Benjamin, I love you too much to lose you. If you want me to be just your friend, I will," I say quietly. "But I'm all you have. No relatives or anyone else, unless you count your work friends – our friends. They'll visit tomorrow. I'm sure they'll be happy to see you're awake."
"Maybe they know more." It's almost as if he's talking to himself.
"I doubt Edward and Riley know more than me. Christ, we've been together for five years! Benjamin, please," I beg him.
"My head hurts. Can you leave? I need to think about this," he mumbles.
"I'll go now, but I will be back tomorrow with our friends and whatever I think that can make you remember. I can't lose you," I repeat. I lean over him, aiming for his forehead but he turns his head away.
"Don't!" He sounds disgusted.
I leave his room with tears streaming down my cheeks.
I walk home, having no other way to get there. No bus reaches that side of city. My bike is in scraps.
At least the police didn't arrest me. When they realized the drunk biker was in coma, they dropped the case. I heard them saying that he's dead anyway or something like that. I didn't have enough power to go and punch them.
Once I arrive home, I shower mechanically, call Riley, and tell him to come to the hospital the next day. Then I start rummaging through our memories – pictures, trinkets, clothes, his favorite music, movies.
I'm determined to have my Benj back. Whatever it takes.
When I arrive at the hospital early the next day, Tia is in Benjamin's room. They're laughing about something.
His black eyes find me and I see him tensing up, but the smile doesn't leave his face.
Does he remember?
"So now you have a pink cat?" he asks Tia.
"No, we cleaned her. Poor thing." She winks at me. "I'll leave you two to talk. Don't upset him, Benjamin. You have no idea how much this man loves you. He never left the hospital the entire time you were in a coma."
Then she's gone.
Would he listen to her?
"Come closer, or would you like to stand by the door?" Benjamin asks, turning to look out the window.
I shuffle next to him, looking between the chair Tia vacated and the bed. I choose the chair, deciding to give him space.
"You have to tell me all about myself. I'm willing to…cooperate, but don't insist on…" He waves between us. "I'm not so sure…"
My heart aches. "It's okay, Benj. I brought a lot of memories. You're bound to make some connections, right?"
"We'll see." He shrugs, then meets my eyes. "Garrett, right?"
God, my name on his lips. "Yes," I whisper.
"Okay, Garrett. What do I like to eat? What's my favorite food? The toast they served me earlier made me puke."
"You usually eat cereal with milk in the morning," I explain, loving this somewhat normal conversation.
"What kind of cereal?" He looks so curious.
Curious Benjamin was always entertaining – his huge black eyes would grow wide, his head would cock to the side, and he'd have this adorable frown on his face.
We talk about his likes and dislikes until the door opens and our friends step inside. It's close to noon and I appreciate that they brought food.
"Benny!" Riley squeals.
Before I can stop him, he's hugging Benjamin, who seems frozen.
"Oh, sweetheart! Look at you! Does anything hurt?" Riley cups his cheek.
"Uh…" Benjamin glances at me, looking agitated.
"Rile, step away. He doesn't even remember you. You're scaring him," I tell him. "That's Riley," I add to Benjamin. "And the one caring four bags of food is Edward."
"Uh, hi. What do you have there?" Benjamin asks Edward.
"Still ruled by the hunger, I see," Edward comments and dumps the bags at the foot of the bed. He starts taking out boxes with food, juice, and plastic cups.
As we eat, I take my laptop out and put it in Benjamin's lap, bringing one folder with pictures up. I put them on slideshow.
"Stop there!" Benj shouts, making a piece of chewed up food fly from his mouth.
That sends Riley in a fit of laughter, while I stop the slideshow and go back to the picture. It's from our trip last summer. We're on the beach at sunset, he's leaning against my bike, watching the sun disappearing.
"That's your bike, right?" Benj asks, his eyes full of questions.
"You remember?" I'm surprised.
"Just the bike...did I drive it?" He's frowning now.
A lump forms in my throat and I can't talk. Filled with a thousand emotions...I could have lost him that night...because of me.
I walk to the window and stare out, not seeing anything.
Edward whispers that the bike got him in the hospital.
I don't return to the bed, but watch as they continue to look over the pictures. Benj seems to struggle over some memories, his eyes lighting up when he sees one picture or another, but the light is gone as fast as it appears.
I really don't want to lose hope, but if he keeps looking pensively at the pictures and short movies of us…I'll understand that I can be only his friend. That's fine by me. As long as he doesn't push me away for good, I'll accept being just his friend.
Later in the evening, Edward and Riley leave, but not after Riley showers him in kisses and hugs. I guess it's hard for him to stay away since he's used to doing that. Besides, that's how Riley rolls – he's the most affectionate person I have ever met.
I slump on the chair next to Benjamin's bed and toy with my ring, all the while watching him.
"We've got crazy friends, Garrett." He laughs hoarsely.
We've got. We.
I beam at him.
"Yeah, it's your fault, baby. You brought Riley over when he fought with Edward…and well, the rest is history."
"I did?" he asks shocked.
"Yeah." I nod. "I was working on my book. Remember, I told you I'm a writer," I whisper, my fingers twitching to touch him, but I resist.
"Yes. Before I forget…" He lips twitch up. "I want to read one of your books."
I choke on my spit. "You definitely hit your head!" I exclaim, laughing loudly. "You never wanted to read my books." I can't stop laughing.
"Better get me one of your books before I start remembering and realize why I didn't want to read them in the first place," he teases me.
"Hey, that's rude!" I chide him, still chuckling. "What was I saying?"
"I brought Riley…home."
God, so good hearing those words falling from his mouth.
My Benj boy.
"Right. When I heard the keys in the lock, I jumped, realizing you were home and I'd been into my story for hours…I hadn't cooked dinner. Then, instead of scolding me like you always did, you called for me, sounding worried. As I approached the hallway, I heard you talking and thought you were on the phone."
"I wasn't." He laughs.
"Nope. You were helping Riley take his jacket off, telling him it will be okay. At first, I thought he was someone that had been on the streets, because you always had a soft spot for them, knowing all about it." I give him a look, wondering if he remembers.
"You told me…that's where I come from," Benj acknowledges.
"Then I thought Riley was someone that was hurt by someone else…on the streets, because you kept telling him about healing and giving it time and…well, when we sat down, I learned that he'd had a fight with his long-time boyfriend. It turned out Edward hadn't forgotten about their anniversary as Riley had thought, but he hadn't said anything, wanting to surprise him when he came home that night…"
"And he didn't go home," Benj whispers. "I think I remember something… He wanted to go to the hotel…" He searches my eyes.
I gasp because that's true. "Oh, Benj!" Without thinking, I lunge at him and hug him tightly. "Sorry," I whisper a moment later, sitting back in my chair.
Surprising me, he takes my hand and squeezes it. "How did they make up?"
Still staring at our joined hands, I continue my story of how I stole Riley's phone and called Edward, told him our address, and waited for him outside the building. He nearly killed me, thinking I was his secret lover, but eventually he calmed down and listened to me. When we got inside the apartment, they had a tearful reunion, then Benjamin brought beers and we sat down talking like old friends. Of course, Riley said he didn't drink beer, choosing to drink soda.
Benjamin has a faraway look in his eyes as I talk, then he glances at me. "He's something else, huh? Riley," he adds quietly.
"Definitely." I nod in agreement. "But he's our friend and I wouldn't trade him for anyone in the world."
Dr. Cullen appears in the room and looks at me startled – then at his wristwatch. A not so subtle message to go home.
I really don't want to leave Benjamin's side.
"Good evening," he tells us. "How are we feeling today?" he addresses Benj.
"A lot better, but there's still a dull headache."
"You're still healing, but I think by the end of the week you can go home."
"Really?" I shout in excitement. "That's great news, doc!"
"Yes, but no stress, no hard working, no physical workout. And you must come for a checkup every week," Dr. Cullen says sternly. "Any problems, your friend has my number. Call me – whatever hour."
We both nod.
I'm happy, relieved, and excited to take him home.
Benjamin looks a little overwhelmed and lost.
"Another five minutes to say goodbye. Visiting hours are over," Dr. Cullen whispers to me on his way out of the room.
"Can you leave the box?" Benjamin requests when I pack my things.
"Okay. I hope it will help. There are more memories." I put the box on the chair and push it closer to the bed. "Do you need anything else before I leave?"
His cheeks flame up and his eyes flicker to the door on the left side of the room – the bathroom.
I walk around the bed and take his hand. "Come on, sit up slowly. We don't need a head rush," I say gently.
"It will be embarrassing, but I think I need you to stay in there with me. Before you came this morning…that nurse helped me to the bathroom and left me alone inside."
"Aw, poor baby," I whisper, grasping his elbow and helping him up. "Don't worry. I'm always here for you."
He shows me a small smile and we walk slowly to the bathroom. Benj sways lightly, but I keep a strong hold on him.
Once inside the bathroom, I'm not sure how to help him. He must see my problem and with a smile, he tells me to just hold his waist or something so he won't fall.
And we stand there for five minutes, until he starts laughing almost hysterically.
"I can't go with you here."
I snort and rub a hand over his back. "What if I turn on the water?"
With the water running and my hand touching his lower back, he relaxes enough. I truly hope this shows him how much I love him, because I bet not many people accept to be there for their other half while they pee.
When Benj is done, I walk him to the sink, and while he washes his hands, I flush the toilet. Then I hand him a towel and walk him back to the bed.
"Thank you so much, Garrett," he whispers gratefully.
"Anytime. I'll come earlier tomorrow to help." I wink.
"Oh, and bring me decent breakfast. Will you?" He almost begs me.
"You know it." I nod. "Well, good night, bab… Benjamin."
He smiles softly. "Night."
I'm at the door when he calls my name and I turn quickly, almost losing my balance, making him laugh.
It's so good to see my man laughing.
"Can you hand me the remote, please? I'd like to watch some TV…catch up with what I missed these past three months."
It's meant as a joke, but it nearly tears my heart open. I could have lost him.
When I put the remote control in his hand, he grabs my wrist. "You're a good person. I truly hope you understand it's extremely difficult for me to grasp what's going on. Please, be patient with me. As for…what's been between us…I'm so sorry for hurting you. I just need a friend."
"I'm your best friend, first and foremost." I really want to kiss him, to smother him in hugs, but I just stroke his hair out of his eyes and leave.
Just to give me something to do, when I get home I clean our apartment. Whatever happens, Benj is coming home at the end of the week.
During my cleaning spree, I stumble over the only personal belonging he has had as long as he can remember – a plush teddy bear. It's ragged as hell, but this should do the trick.
If he remembers about himself, his past, it will be easier to accept the present. As the saying goes – you have to love yourself then others will love you, too. Same principle applies.
In the morning, I arrive bright and early at the hospital, in case Benj needs my assistance again, with the plush toy in tow.
When I step inside the room, there's a male nurse helping him in the bed. I guess they understood his bathroom problem.
Jealousy is burning at my insides.
"Otto!" Benjamin exclaims, his eyes lighting.
My mouth drops and when our eyes meet, I know he realizes what just happened.
He remembered something – on his own.
"Gimme!" He's grabbing the air in front of him like a toddler. "Otto!" he says affectionately when I put the bear in his hands.
I give the male nurse a tight smile.
"This is good progress," he tells me. "I've been assigned to Mr. Amun, considering he refused to allow female nurses to help him in the bathroom."
Benjamin looks up startled. "That's the third time you called me Mr. Amun. My name is Benjamin."
I laugh despite myself. "Your last name is Amun, sweetie. Mine is Steel. Garrett Steel."
Benj nods. "Oh." Then he rubs his forehead. "It's so annoying that I can't remember anything. My brain is foggy."
"You'll remember. Have faith, baby. Look, you remembered Otto," I encourage him.
It's hard to be careful with what I say around him, but I'm so used to calling him "baby" – like second nature.
The nurse introduces himself as Jasper, and says to call him if we need anything else.
"Don't worry. He won't need you as long as I'm here," I hiss, more cutting than I meant, but he's rubbing me the wrong way.
"Just doing my job, sir. Even though you're here for you partner, I'm here to do my job." He turns to look at Benjamin. "If you need anything, push that button, okay?"
Benj nods and with that, Nurse Jasper leaves. I scowl after him.
"That was so rude of you, Garrett!"
I roll my eyes and sit at the foot of his bed. "How are you today?"
I need a distraction.
"Clean," Benjamin jokes.
My eyes widen. "NO!" I yell. "Tell me that…that… He didn't touch you!" I see red suddenly.
I want to go after that stupid nurse and wring his neck.
"Don't worry, buddy. He's happily married with two kids. He showed me a picture of his wife and children." Benj winks at me. "But it's funny to see you jealous."
I huff and fold my arms over my chest.
"So… How are you?" I insist.
"I feel better. Dr. Cullen was here earlier and told me once I'm free to go home, I need to start visiting the gym for toning my muscles. I had my leg and arm broken, plus I've been on bed rest for the past three months."
I nod. "We'll go to the gym."
Something on the nightstand catches my eye – Benj put a picture of us there.
"I like that one," he explains. "Have you always had a beard?"
"It's a goatie, and yes. Especially since you encouraged me to grow one because it felt good," I answer.
"It felt good?" he echoes me, confused.
I put my hand on his leg. "You know…when we kissed, when I went down on you…" I hint, raising an eyebrow.
His black eyes grow wide and seem to dilate. I can see that he remembers something. There's even a whimper that leaves his throat.
I stroke his leg. "It's okay. We're going at your pace."
Benj sits up and leans toward me, hand stretched. "Can I…touch it?"
I chuckle and tilt my head toward him.
It's bittersweet to feel his soft palm against my stubbly cheek. There's amazement in his eyes as he keeps touching my cheek and jaw.
"It's soft…I thought it would be itchy."
I smirk, but bite my tongue. It's not the right time for dirty jokes.
We spend the whole day talking – mostly about him, and I'd lie if I said I didn't try to hint at us every now and then.
I miss my Benj. He's so close, but so out of my reach.
By the end of the week when he's released, I can say he's my best friend once again. One thing is certain – Benjamin hasn't tried to acknowledge that we once were a couple. He dodges that subject every time it's broached by me, Tia, Dr. Cullen and even Nurse Jasper, who I realized isn't that bad. He's very professional.
Edward's driving us home early on Saturday morning. I'm surprised when Benj asks about Riley, but after glancing at Edward, I answer that Riley is busy.
Actually, he's in our apartment, preparing a nice welcome home party for Benjamin. I hope he appreciates it. He seems quite taken with Riley's bubbly personality.
Everyone loves Riley; even homophobes love him, which is beyond amusing. A man once talked with Riley for half an hour, and then when we joined them and Edward wrapped his arms around him, the man scowled but carried on talking. That was a ray of hope, that if people would actually listen to us…they'd understand we're just like them.
Edward's babbling about some new movie he wants to see and Riley thinks it's stupid, but I'm not listening to him. All my focus is on the hand on my knee. I'm jittery, and when Benj covered my knee with his warm hand, giving me a sideways look, it stopped bouncing – the small touch made my dick come to life.
Before I can self-implode, we arrive.
To our surprise, Benjamin leads the way to the right building and up the stairs to the right door.
"Does he remember and is just fucking with us?" Edward whispers in my ear.
"Uh, no. Trust me. Dr. Cullen told me he remembers trivial things…like how to eat, how to scratch himself, how to find his way out of a room or building. I guess this is why routine is good. The way home stuck to his brain."
We watch as Benjamin stops in front of our apartment, hand on the door handle. He turns to me, his eyes wide with awareness of what just happened. A huge smile breaks on his face.
"I remembered!" His black eyes grow even wider. "Oh. Here…" He touches the wall next to the door, smirking at me. "We…" He gulps, eyeing Edward, embarrassed.
"Yes, we kissed there many times," I whisper, stepping closer.
I want to kiss him right now. Against that wall.
"I need more time, Garrett. It's all coming back…slowly."
I smile and stroke his cheek. "At your pace, baby." I repeat what I've been telling him ever since he woke up.
The door opens, making Benj shout and grab my arm, looking startled at Riley.
"You nearly gave me a heart attack!" he accuses Riley.
"Oh, what are friends for?" Riley jokes, grabs Benjamin's hand, and tugs him inside. "If you don't follow in the next five seconds, I'm locking you two out and having my wicked way with baby boy."
As I stride after them with Edward in tow, Benjamin winks at me and closes the door in my nose.
What the fuck?
"Are you sure he's not fucking with you?" Edward snorts out.
"He better not be! I'm going to kick his ass if he remembers and is just worrying me sick with this amnesia shit!" I shout as I try the door handle.
I can't believe him.
"I truly don't remember, Garrett. But it's fun getting a rinse of you. You're too easy!" It comes Benj's answer from the other side, followed by Riley's loud laughter.
"Well, you can be easily played," Edward states.
I whirl to him. "They're safe on the other side….you're right here. So you better be careful what you say!" I hiss.
"Don't hurt the goodies and you'll still be my friend!" Riley shouts at me.
"Fuck you!" I snap, kicking the door.
It opens to show me a giddy Riley and a happy Benjamin. Everything around me melts away when I see him smiling, his eyes shining. I love seeing him happy.
"Now? What would our men say?" Riley whispers, making me turn to him, confused. Then I remember what I just said.
Trust him to make jokes.
"I don't mind…but Edward might," Benjamin answers.
"Nope. We're cool like this. You're our friend." Edward winks at me.
I allow Riley to drag me to Benjamin's and my bedroom, still shocked. "Is this part of the plan? We're not re—"
"Shh," he whispers, closing the door behind us. "It was Edward's idea. If Benjamin comes after you, he must feel something, or realize he has some feelings for you."
"And if he doesn't?" I wonder, plunking myself on the bed.
"He will. You know how persuasive Edward can be."
"You need to relax, sweetie. Benjamin will be okay. You'll see. I never expected him to be all over you so soon. Just remember, he's been in a coma for three months, and awake for only a week. This time, he tried learning about himself. Cut him some slack."
"Since when did you become the voice of reason, Rile?"
"Since my best friend started thinking with his lower head, never mind using his heart." He glares at me.
The door creaks as it opens and Benjamin sticks his head in the room. His eyes immediately find mine, and I can almost hear him sigh in relief.
"Can we talk in private, Garrett?" he whispers, shuffling inside.
"Baby steps," Riley murmurs to me before leaving.
"I think…this place…" Benj waves around. "A lot of memories are swirling in my brain, but they're out of my reach. It's like a broken movie or just pictures thrown into a box."
"What do you remember?" I ask curiously, patting the spot next to me.
He comes to sit, turning to me. "Your face is in all my memories…you're smiling, you're angry, you're amused, you're asleep, you're…uh, you know…flushed, there's lust, happiness, joy, sadness…love."
He really does remember.
Benjamin cups my cheek. "You have to teach me, but I don't want to see you sad if I can't…if it's too soon…"
"Baby, I really want to kiss you," I whisper.
He searches my eyes then closes his, titling his head. As I approach, he feels my breath closer and cringes lightly.
Maybe Riley is right, but I need to try.
Maybe kissing him will help.
I wind my fingers through his hair and press my lips to his soft ones, just staying there. Then ever so slowly I massage them, never trying to open his mouth.
Suddenly, Benjamin pulls back groaning and turns around, but I still can see him wiping his mouth. It's like a dagger to my heart.
"I'm so sorry," he mumbles.
I swallow the lump in my throat. "It's okay."
But it's not okay.
I'm slowly dying inside every time he pushes me away.
Days melt into weeks, which melt into months.
Benjamin remembers the most amusing things ever – like how he threw the coffee maker out the window, nearly killing someone in the process, how he once threw up all over Riley when we went to a bar, how I took him to bed once when he fell asleep on the couch and bumped his head into the doorframe.
When he bursts out in laughter without warning, I know he's remembered something.
We go to the gym twice a week and I have to say it's great. And it gives me an opportunity to see my man without a shirt and sweating.
We have our get togethers with Riley and Edward every weekend – like always.
He starts going to work a month after he woke up. His boss is an amazing person and very understanding.
I work on my newest book.
Everything is back to normal.
Minus having my Benjamin back. He even made me take the ring off within the first week back home.
We are best friends living together.
That's what I promised, isn't it?
I can't do it.
I need him in my arms.
I need to kiss him.
I need to touch him, him to touch me.
I need to be inside him so badly.
It's much more difficult than I thought possible to live with him, but not be able to be with him.
I come to accept that you have to sleep on the bed you made…or whatever the saying is.
We're close to Christmas. When I arrive home in the late evening after a last minute meeting with my publicist before the book's release, I know something's wrong.
The apartment is suspiciously quiet and dark.
"Benj?" I call out, flipping the light on in the hallway. "Benjamin?" I repeat, louder. "You home?"
"In here," he answers lifelessly from the living room. "Don't…no light."
I turn off the light, toe my boots off, and make my way to him. He's on the couch, hugging his knees, rocking back and forth.
"What's wrong? Does anything hurt?"
I sit on the arm rest, hugging him close to my chest. He becomes a sobbing mess, clinging to me and burrowing his face in my stomach.
"I'm a failure," he chokes out. "How can you even stand me?"
"Benjamin!" I gasp, tilting his head. "God, please don't cry," I beg him. "You're not a failure. How can you even think that? I'll always be there for you. I can't even think of losing you. You need me more than ever, baby."
"See? How can you still call me that even though I can't seem to remember what we once had. I know it's buried deep within me. I can't…" He sniffs. "I even sent you away from our bed."
"Benjamin, look at me," I murmur, wiping his tears. "I love you." He cries harder and I'm at a loss of what to do.
"I don't understand how… If you hated me I'd understand that, but love me? No." He shakes his head. "Don't worry, though. You won't have me as a burden for too long…"
"What are you talking about?" I ask afraid.
"If you didn't come home now…" He looks away, and I follow his head.
There are five different pill bottles on the coffee table.
"NO! Please! Did you take any?" I shout, my heart beating out of my chest.
"Thank God!" I breathe in relief. "If you even think of that once again…Benjamin…" It's my turn to choke up, and I slide on to the couch, hugging him tightly. "Don't leave me."
"Garrett…I remembered something."
"What was it?" I wonder.
"Our first time," he admits quietly. He grabs his stomach and squeezes his eyes. "I got sick."
I can't keep the tears at bay.
There's really no chance in hell Benjamin will be my lover ever again.
Something must have happened during the accident…
But he's not interested in females, either. He has a dozen around him at work, but they're just friends.
With every passing day, I'm losing Benjamin.
More time passes and I keep an eye on him all the time. I even have Riley and Edward to watch him at work.
I'm paranoid, but his suicidal confession scares the shit out of me.
The more time that passes, the more distant he becomes.
Now, over a year after the accident, Edward says he wants to have a vacation on the beach. So he rents a cottage for the four of us.
The trip there is filled with fun and laughter, but Benjamin's smile disappears as soon as it appears.
I have a feeling everything will change over this break. The question is – good or bad change?
I truly hope good – fucking amazing.
Yeah, wishful thinking.
The cottage is small, but it has two rooms, a living room, a kitchen and two bathrooms. It's perfect.
The couch looks comfortable, because I know I won't be sleeping in the same bed as Benj.
We unpack and sit at the kitchen table ready to eat something. Five hours of driving is too long.
I'm not the only one watching Benjamin, confused when he fidgets and refuses to make eye-contact. When our fingers touch as I pass him more bread, he whimpers and snatches his hand. The second he's done eating, he runs out of the room.
"The fuck?" Edward asks, looking after our friend.
"He's been acting weird for the past few weeks." I shrug. "I guess more memories…"
Riley snorts. "I think he's starting to feel attracted to you…and it's freaking him out."
The piece of chicken I just shoved in my mouth goes down the wrong pipe. "You think what?" I choke out, drinking water.
"Trust me. I've seen guys coming to terms with their sexuality. He wants you, Garrett."
Edward clears his throat, tapping his fingers on the table, looking pensively at Riley.
"Present company excluded, honey," Riley jokes.
That's true. We learned that Riley hit on Edward when the poor guy had no idea he was even gay.
"Maybe you can talk to him…" I tell Edward.
"Man, he needs you now. Not me. You two have to talk about this. Alone."
"Garrett?" Benjamin's tentative voice comes from the doorway. "Can we talk once you're done eating?"
"I'm finished," I say quickly, getting up and nearly toppling the table over.
It gets laughter from my friends and it steals a small smile from Benj.
"On the beach?" he whispers.
"Anywhere you want," I assure him.
We walk on the soft sand for about five minutes before I feel his hand taking mine, intertwining our fingers.
"We both know I remember more and more every day," he starts quietly.
He squeezes my hand. "I really like it when you call me that. Did I have a pet name for you?"
"I'm glad you don't remember it." I laugh.
"Was it something bad? Didn't you like it?" he asks worried.
"I loved it, but you tended to use it outside the bedroom. It was embarrassing."
"How bad can it be?"
"Pooh Bear…you know like the cartoons?" I glance at him. "Don't laugh!"
Benjamin surprises me by stopping in front of me and putting his hands around my neck.
What's he doing?
"Pooh? I like it." He smiles softly. "I have to tell you something important."
I can't think.
I'm captivated by his huge black eyes – they're soft and warm.
"I love you, Garrett. I've been coming to terms with these feelings for a couple months. I remember how much you mean to me, how much I loved you. I'm sorry I didn't say anything…"
"Really? You love me?" I could cry.
"Yes." He nods once, watching me worried, his lower lip disappearing between his teeth.
"I love you too, Benjamin. So fucking much it hurts." I crush him to my chest.
"Oh, and no more sleeping on the couch. Unless we're fighting."
I'm truly crying now.
"Oh, baby! You've made me so happy!"
"I want to make you happy every day." He leans closer and kisses me softly.
We're so lost in our bubble, that only when it starts raining do we realize we should head back. Edward and Riley are probably locked in their room giving us privacy.
"Let's get out of these wet clothes," Benj proposes, winking at me as he starts undressing in the hallway. I follow suit.
On the way to our room, we leave a trail of wet clothes.
I don't care.
Once inside our room, I foot the door closed and press Benjamin's back against it. Our eyes meet and I can see he truly wants this.
"Benj, baby," I whisper, cupping his cheeks. "I still can't believe you're here."
"I'm really sorry for hurting you for so long. And to think…it's all been my fault. If I hadn't insisted on riding that bike while drunk…"
I press two fingers over his lips. "Shh. Focus on now, baby."
He smiles breathtakingly and crushes his mouth to mine. I've missed his kisses more than anything else in the world.
We don't say another word as we slowly make our way to the bed, where I push him down, coving his body with mine. I start worshipping every part of him from his head, neck, and chest to his legs and fingers. I don't want to leave a spot of his body un-kissed. I save the best for last.
Benjamin moans gutturally as I wrap my lips around his shaft.
His fingers tangle in my hair, and his hips buck up as I give him the best head he's ever had.
"Gar…eetttt!" he moans loudly, twitching and emptying too quickly down my throat.
I guess over a year without a release was enough for him. But my Benj is young and I'm sure he'll recover quickly.
Three years make a difference. He's twenty seven, still young.
"I need you, Garrett. Please," he begs softly.
I rub a hand over his inner thigh, feeling like shit. I don't have any supplies.
"Baby, I had no idea… I'm not prepared and I don't want to hurt you," I whisper.
Benjamin winks at me, smirking. "Try my backpack. We have to thank Edward."
"That sneaky bastard!" I mutter. "Wait. If he knew… He knew, right?" I check.
"I'm sorry. When I asked him to help me with a few things…he figured out what was going on. Don't be too upset, Riley didn't know either. That's why I chose Edward to trust with my secret."
"You're right." I laugh, grabbing his backpack. "Riley would have spilled the beans by now."
"Several times," Benjamin adds, chuckling.
I take the bottle of lube and go back between Benjamin's opened legs. I put a pillow under the small of his back for good measure, then squirt a generous amount of lube on his crack. He hisses at the cool lubricant, but I immediately catch it with my hand and slowly massage around his fluttering hole.
He's even more beautiful than I remember. Which is unbelievable.
First, I run my thumb over his rosebud, before slowly inserting it inside. He trembles lightly, opening to me. My index finger follows my thumb, being sucked inside his willing body.
"Garrett…Garrett…Garrett…Garrett…Garrett…" He sounds like a broken record, chanting my name over and over.
I can't say that I don't like hearing him say my name like that.
"I want you ready, baby."
"I am. God, I'm ready," he whines. "Please…" Benjamin picks his head up, looking at me with huge dilated black eyes. "Please, Garrett Pooh."
I groan, moving my fingers faster inside him.
It's been too long and I don't want to hurt him. Ever.
I continue stretching him, kissing his thighs, sucking his balls until he's writhing under me, begging, moaning, whimpering.
When I leave his body, Benjamin sighs in relief, squeezing his dick, and watching me through his lashes. "Garrett…"
I smile and crawl closer, kissing the living shit out of him. We kiss frantically, grinding against each other, grasping at the other's body, marking our skin.
Then I settle between his legs, widening them further, and guide my aching dick into my man. It's been such a long time I'm afraid I'll embarrass myself, I'll disappoint him, but I focus on how good his ass feels around my skin, sucking me in.
"Ahhh!" Benjamin moans, throwing his head back, but his hand is on my stomach, trying to push me away or keep me still.
"Want me to stop?" I whisper, rubbing my hand over his leg.
"Just go a little slower," he murmurs, gulping visibly. I want to suck on his Adam's apple.
And I do just that, but too late, I realize by leaning up I'm sliding further inside him. He shouts my name, bucking up and sucking me all the way in. I don't move for a good minute, allowing him to adjust to my girth, length, and the feeling of being filled.
All this time, I kiss his neck, his shoulders, paying extra attention to his pebbled nipples. His hands are on my back, his nails digging into my skin.
"Pooh, need you to move," Benjamin breaths in my ear. He seems quite taken with the nickname, but he always loved to call me that.
"Okay, baby." I kiss his mouth before sitting on my knees. I raise one of his legs and put it on my shoulder, then shuffle closer and anchor on his leg, I start moving.
It feels better than before if that's possible.
I press small kisses to his ankle as I slide in and out slowly. My eyes cross at the pleasure engulfing my body and Benjamin seems just as lost as me.
When his eyes find mine, I know he wants me closer so I move down his leg, then cover his body with mine, just rocking my hips. He wraps both legs around my waist and bucks up.
"I love you, Garrett." He threads his fingers through my hair, seeking my mouth. "Love you so much."
I gulp through the lump in my throat. "Love you too, Benjamin." I hook my arms under his shoulders, holding him tightly before I sit up, bringing him with me. Then I lean back until I'm lying on the bed and he's on top of me. He immediately starts moving faster, holding his dick tightly as he bounces on top of me. His beautiful eyes are closed, pure pleasure written all over his face. My hands explore his toned stomach, his strong shoulders, his nipples, his ribs. There's not an inch of his torso I leave untouched.
"Ah! Oh! Uhhhh!" Benjamin squeezes me deep inside him as he trashes on top of me.
I bat his hand away and grip his cock – that's all he needs to explode on my stomach, yelling my name at the top of his lungs.
I don't even care our friends can hear us. I follow suit, emptying my load inside his tight ass, chanting his name.
He falls exhausted on top of me, trembling delicately. I stroke his wet hair.
"My beautiful boy."
I hope you all enjoyed this. The beautiful banner made for me is on Facebook. I will add it in my group too when I get home - that's right, I'm doing this at work. :) I really couldn't wait.
PS: I will post this on AO3 too in case ffn has a problem with it.