Lucky To Have You
Jean looked over to the seat next to him for the umpteenth time that morning, his eyebrows drawn together in a slight pout.
'Where is he?'
The first class of the day had started five minutes ago, and Marco was still nowhere to be found.
'He would have texted me if he was sick. I hope everything's okay…'
Jean couldn't help but fret. Marco usually informed him about everything, even things he didn't want to know, like when his mother was on her period. But that was usually because he could hear her screaming at something-or-other in the background when they were talking on the phone.
But for the first time this morning, there was nothing. The teacher was already launching into his powerpoint presentation on the stock market, and Jean was just about to actually try and pay attention when the school social worker and her assistant entered the room.
Jean's attention immediately focused on the social worker. Her dark hair was well-kept, as always, but her normally immaculate makeup was ever-so-slightly smeared.
Jean felt his eyebrows take on a quizzical tilt, but then he saw her eyes were bloodshot. She sniffed, and he gathered that she must have been crying, and it disturbed him greatly.
Something was definitely wrong if the social worker was crying at school. The teacher had stopped presenting and was whispering with the woman, and after a few moments, with a curious but worried look himself, announced that the woman had something to tell them.
She walked to the front of the room, and Jean, being near the front, heard her shaky intake of breath.
She spoke. "Class, we have received news this morning that last night your classmate, Marco Bott, attempted suicide." She swallowed harshly. "He succeeded."
Jean's response was immediate. "What?" His voice was soft, almost but not quite a whisper. "You're lying…YOU'RE LYING!" He shouted.
The social worker's assistant came over and handed him a tissue, asking him if he needed to go down to the Guidance Office.
He hadn't even realized he was crying, but now the tears were coming full force.
He vaguely heard the social worker mention something about wake and funeral arrangements and dates, but he was too wrapped up in his grief to acutely care right then.
'Oh Marco, why? I thought you were okay…'
Marco had been battling suicidal urges for years, and even a drug problem because of depression, but Jean had been with him through it all.
He was the one who rubbed his back when he vomited, held him when he cried, stayed awake all night just to make sure Marco would live to see tomorrow, and made him smile as often as he could, even if he had to act like a fool to achieve his goal.
When it all boiled down to it, he cared for Marco above everything, even his pride, and that was what made him realize he was in love with his best friend.
He never told him. It just couldn't work. And the last thing he wanted to do was drive Marco away. He wanted to stay by his side forever, even if that meant Marco would never know how he felt.
His one and only wish was to keep Marco safe and happy, and in the end he could do neither.
He never fully understood it. Marco came from a typical family, nothing horrible, and no huge tragedies had happened to him, he was just…so sad…all the time.
He was downright miserable with life, as he'd once told Jean: "Humans work, and work, and work, and then we die. What's the point?"
Jean's sobs suddenly tapered off. He felt…so cold. As if all of the blood had just left his body at once. He suddenly shot up in his seat. He did not like that feeling.
He bolted out of the classroom before anyone could do a thing. He didn't even stop to get his jacket, even if it was below freezing.
Marco's house wasn't that far. He had to see for himself. He wouldn't believe anything until he did.
After running almost the whole three blocks to Marco's house, he simply knocked and entered through the unlocked door, as he always did. "Mom!?" Jean called out frantically.
Both boys had gotten to calling the other's mother 'mom' out of familiarity.
Mr. Bott apparently wasn't home yet, judging by the absence of a car in the driveway, and he sprinted up the stairs to Marco's room, meeting his mother at the doorway. She looking frantic.
"Marco!?" She shouted before she saw him.
Jean ran towards her and she opened her arms to him instantly, half a dozen fresh tears streaming from her eyes.
"JEAN!" She keened, crushing him in her arms, and they both sank to the floor.
Jean just held her, rocking her gently, as she sobbed brokenly. "My baby…my baby…"
Jean made a choked noise. "So he's really…"
Mrs. Bott cried out before tightening her grip even further. "A train…"
There were train tracks just a mere two blocks from this house, and Jean suddenly felt sick.
He leaned against Marco's mother and practically screamed into her shoulder, prompting even more loud sobs from both of them.
Jean doesn't even know how long he's there, staring over Mrs. Bott's shoulder into Marco's room, smelling his scent on her, looking at the neatly made, unslept-in sheets that Mrs. Bott had put back in order yesterday morning.
He would never sit on that bed with Marco again, just knowing the other was still warm and alive and breathing, just being next to him and enjoying his company.
He would never do anything with Marco again. Would he ever see him again…?
Of course he would! Was that even a question? He'd be damned if Marco went to Hell.
Then there truly would be no God, and whoever says other wise can go fuck a cactus. The God he knows understands pain and helps relieve it, he doesn't throw people who don't deserve it into Hell.
And if there was one person who deserved to get into Heaven, it was Marco. Jean had even told him once that he was an Angel on Earth.
Well, apparently God was short some Angels…
He didn't realize he had said that out loud until Mrs. Bott's sobs unexpectedly stopped.
She pulled away and stared at him with the biggest, saddest eyes he had ever seen, and hoped to never see again.
"Oh Jean," She took his face in her hands and kissed his forehead. "Marco was the luckiest boy in the world to have you. This is from him." And she kissed his cheek.
Jean looked at her in confusion, but she took something from the inside pocket of her apron with shaky hands. "This is Marco's," Her voice broke, but she sniffed and handed it to him. "I want you to have it."
Jean took the small journal slowly from her, opening it up towards the middle.
He leafed through it, smiling slightly at the things written. It mostly involved himself and Marco and some of the fun things they had done over the years, and the journal made them out to be the happiest moments of his life, and he quoted, "Especially since it was with Jean."
Towards the end, the entries started getting more descriptive. Like Marco had wanted to engrave them into the mind of whoever was reading, or maybe his own.
But when he came to the last entry, Jean was not prepared for what was there.
"Jean spent the night again last night. It was fun, we just watched movies and tried tossing popcorn into our mouths.
Jean missed, I swear, a hundred times if the popcorn all over the floor was anything to go by.
But that wasn't the best part. I finally told him. The only thing was, I whispered it to him after he fell asleep.
We both just passed out on the couch, but somehow he made it on top of me and sort of hugged me in his sleep.
His hair is waaaaay too fuzzy when it's up my nose by the way.
But it made me so happy. I just watched him for a minute, but then it sort of slipped out. And I kissed his cheek.
A part of me hoped he would wake up, but he didn't. I forgot that he sleeps like a rock.
But it's alright. He's still my best friend in the entire world, and that will never change.
Just as I will never stop loving him."
Jean's hands shook, so badly in fact that he let the book fall into his lap from the shaking.
Marco's mother reached out and hugged him to her, guiding his head to her shoulder as she rubbed his back.
Her voice was surprisingly steady when she spoke. "He really loved you, you know." Jean let out a shaky breath. "Whenever he talked about you, his eyes would light up and his smile-" She had to pause and swallow. "I never realized until I read that exactly what he felt. …And I think you felt the same…"
Jean simply nodded. Mrs. Bott rubbed his back some more. "I'm so sorry all of this happened baby, I'm so sorry."
Jean hugged her back. "It's going to be okay."
Mrs. Bott scrunched her eyebrows together, the freckles she gave her son crinkling as well.
"I just feel like everything will be alright. It won't be the same, but it'll be alright. I'll live for the both of us."
Jean's grip tightened, and Mrs. Bott nodded, repeating as she had before.
"Marco was so lucky to have you."
Well, where to start with this one. I guess I should start by saying that I did this because 1) I was reading JeanMarco fan fiction the other day when I ran into something of similar beginnings to this fic. The author had put no warnings, no indication that Marco would end up committing suicide by the end of the fic, and not only would that have saved me some grief, but some really nasty trigger-induced flashbacks. You see, it is two years to this day that I had a friend commit suicide, in the exact way described above. And the way that certain person had written their fic, (it was a high school AU) it was almost EXACTLY how my experience went as far as finding out. I honestly never knew exactly what a trigger was before reading that. It's not fun. You can't breath, you can't think about anything but what happened, and you scream. I screamed. I don't scream. It was to the point where I almost blacked out it was so powerful. It scared the LIVING FUCK out of me. But I wasn't gonna be that one asshole that tells another person what to do, so I just left it. In retrospect I probably shouldn't have, but I don't even remember the name of the fic so…. But the reason I chose JeanMarco for this was not because the original was JeanMarco, but because of Marco's uncanny similarities to my late friend. He had dark eyes and hair, and was one of the few people of whom I noticed had freckles, always cheery, and oh my God his smile… It is seriously uncanny, just how much they are alike. Now granted I wasn't as close to him as I made out Jean to be to Marco here, but I can't even imagine the intensity of the pain I would have felt had I been closer to him. It was almost unbearable. But it's funny you know. I actually used to believe in the stereotypical God who sends people who kill themselves to Hell. And I'm not trying to bash anyone here or force things down your throats, because that is the one thing I won't stand for above all else, but if you do think that way, imagine for a moment this: The person, anyone, who means THE MOST to you in life commits suicide. They are the most wonderful, perfect person in the world to you. Would you still believe God will send them to Hell? I just can't wrap my brain around the fact that our all-loving and wonderful God wants to prolong the suffering instead of relieve it. And I'm sorry I'm not sorry if this offends anyone, I'm not trying to do that here. I never really extensively talked to anyone about it or anything, and I had to put up with a lot of shit as far as what people said about him back when it happened, and nothing ever fully got out of my system. They aren't kidding when they say healing is a process. It takes a fucking lot. And I know this probably wasn't what you bargained for if you managed to read this all the way through, so I apologize for that, and just have one last thing before I go. Please, no pity party. I'm not doing this for people to feel sorry for me, this is just something that I've needed to get off my chest for far too long. I did this for myself, and the only thing I can say is thus: Always, no matter what, make sure to tell your friends EXACTLY how much you love them and how much they mean to you. My friend was proof that you never know how someone is really feeling, and when they've had enough.
Characters © Isayama Hajime
Story © MarluxiaSutcliff116