Life is Tough

Disclaimer: I don't own Perks of Being a Wallflower

Warning: Contains mild violence

"Get out!" Brad shouted again as his father brought the belt down across his back once more. Patrick turned and scrambled up the stairs and ran outside. He collapsed on the sidewalk, sobbing like he never had before.

"Brad," he gasped, "B–Brad." This wasn't how the night was supposed to go. Everything was perfect until Brad's father got home early. It was one of the few times they'd been able to be together alone and it happened to be on their anniversary…

Brad had made macaroni and cheese because it was the only thing he could cook outside of things you stick in the microwave. He had apologized profusely for it not being more romantic, but Patrick had just kissed him to shut him up and told him it was perfect. They had eaten dinner and then curled up on the couch to watch a film. However, the film didn't last long and soon they were making their way downstairs to Brad's room. They were lying in bed, clothes strewn across the floor, when they heard the front door open and close.

"What was that?" Patrick asked.

"Brad? You home?" they heard a voice call and Brad's eyes widened.

"It's my dad," he hissed as he and Patrick scrambled from the bed, "He's not supposed to be home until Sunday." They were hurrying to get their clothes back on when Brad's father came down the stairs.

"Brad, I–" he stopped when he saw the two boys half-dressed.

"What is going on here?" he asked slowly.

"Dad, I can explain–" But he never got the chance because that was when all hell broke loose…

Patrick was still sitting on the sidewalk when he heard the door open behind him.

"And don't come back!" the man shouted as he threw Brad out by the scruff of his shirt. Brad stumbled down the stone steps and fell into the snow where he remained motionless. His father slammed the door shut and Patrick ran over to his boyfriend.

"Brad?" he murmured, "Brad? Can you hear me?" The boy in question slowly looked up at him and Patrick saw that his face was swollen and covered in blood.

"I'm sorry," Brad said quietly.

"No, no, don't apologize," Patrick said, "You have nothing to be sorry for."

"You shouldn't have to see this," Brad continued as if he had not heard Patrick, "You should probably go home."

"I'm not leaving you here," Patrick said, "Come on, we need to get out of here in case he comes back." He helped Brad to his feet and allowed his boyfriend to lean heavily against him.

"Come on, do you think you can make it my house? Sam dropped me off so she has the car," Patrick said regretfully.

"I'll be fine," Brad said as they slowly started to make their way down the sidewalk. Brad stumbled several times and if Patrick didn't have quick reflexes they both would have tumbled to the ground.

They were walking down a quiet road when they heard a car coming from behind them. The car slowed down and the two boys glanced over to see Sam, Alice, and Mary Elizabeth in the front seat of the truck.

"Patrick?!" Sam cried as she stopped and truck and the three girls climbed out, "What happened?"

"His dad came home early," he said and the girls' eyes widened, "Please Sam, I need to get him home and make sure he's okay."

"Here, you guys get in, me and Alice will sit in the back," Mary Elizabeth said and they helped Patrick get Brad in the truck. Sam zoomed off in the direction of their house, trying to avoid all the bumps on the road. Brad tried not to groan when they hit a pothole, but was unable to when it rattled his broken body.

"Shhh, I know," Patrick whispered, running his fingers through Brad's hair, "I know it hurts, but we're almost there and then I'm going to make you better. I promise." Brad turned his face slightly so it was pressed against Patrick's neck as he tried not to cry. Once he and Patrick were alone it would be fine, but he wouldn't cry in front of the girls.

"We're almost there Brad," Sam said quietly as she pulled onto their street. She had barely turned the car off when Patrick was already helping Brad out and inside. They got him up to Patrick's room where he collapsed on the bed.

"I'll get you the first aid kit," Sam said, hurrying out of the room.

"Alice, Mary Elizabeth, can you please get me some towels and a bowl of water?" Patrick requested and the girls left the room. Patrick knelt next to his bed and started running his fingers through Brad's hair.

"How are you doing?" he asked quietly.

"Hurts," Brad admitted reluctantly.

"I know," Patrick said, "Sam, Alice, and Mary Elizabeth are going to be back in a minute and then I'll get you cleaned up." Right then, Sam walked into the room, followed by Mary Elizabeth and Alice.

"Do you want us to stay or would you rather do this yourself?" Sam asked quietly.

"Are you guys okay if I do this myself?" Patrick asked, thankful for their help, but knowing Brad wanted to be alone.

"Of course," Sam said, "We'll be downstairs if you need anything." The girls left the room and Patrick turned back to where his boyfriend was lying on the bed.

"Alright, can you sit up for me?" he asked quietly and helped Brad sit up before he wet one of the towels.

"This might sting a bit," Patrick said apologetically as he started cleaning the blood off Brad's face. The other boy tried not to wince, but was unable to stop himself at some points.

"I'm sorry, I'm so sorry," Patrick would murmur every time.

"Alright," Patrick finally said, "Can you take your shirt off?" Brad slowly started to remove it, but in the end he needed Patrick's help.

"I'm sorry," Brad said quietly.

"Don't apologize," Patrick waved him off, but Brad continued.

"I mean it," he said and Patrick looked up when he heard Brad's serious tone, "I know things haven't been easy for you and I'm really sorry for everything." Brad rested his hand on Patrick's cheek as he spoke. Patrick leaned forward and kissed Brad gently on the mouth and then on both cheeks and made his way down Brad's jaw and neck. Finally. he just held Brad as the football player buried his face in Patrick's shoulder and sobbed.

"We'll be out of here soon," Patrick whispered, "Just a few more months and then we can leave this place behind."

"W-Washington," Brad stammered, "They have music and a g-great football team." Patrick nodded, pulling back and resting his forehead against Brad's.

"Exactly, we'll be there soon," he said, "And until then you can stay here. My parents won't mind."

"What about school?" Brad whispered, feeling more vulnerable than he ever had.

"It's gonna be hard," Patrick replied, "I won't lie to you, it will be hard. But you have me. You have me, Sam, Mary Elizabeth, Alice, and Charlie. You're not alone in this." Brad leaned forward again and hugged Patrick tightly.

"Thanks," he whispered as the two boys just sat there and held each other.

Alright, so this one was a little different from my other Perks stories, but I hope you guys liked it!

Thanks for reading and let me know what you thought!