Title: The Silence of the Night.
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Word Count: ~20,000. This chapter: 3,973
Disclaimers: The people you might recognize in here are NOT mine. I'm not making any profit, I'm only doing this for fun. There's no way this ever happened and so on.
Beta: aislinntlc Thank you for all your wonderful help.
Type: Romance with just enough angst to make it good.
A/N: I had some really incredible cheerleaders on this fic!!! I love you all dearly! And I couldn’t have done it without you! So THANK YOU!!!
Summary: A candle flickers softly and helps making the sound of the rain drumming against the window cozy. The light from it caresses Tommy’s face on the pillow; shadows and light move together and Adam follows their caress with one of his own. A content smile tugs at the curve of Tommy’s lips as he drifts off to sleep.
Getting up on an elbow with a hand under his cheek Adam gazes at him, and before he can even think about holding it back he whispers, “You’re so beautiful.” Somewhere in Tommy’s subconscious the words must reach him because his nose scrunches a little, like he’s denying Adam’s words just as he would be doing it if he were awake. Adam’s smiles lovingly and because he knows it’s safe, that Tommy is too far into dreamland to really notice he continues.....
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“That was one of the best nights in my life baby. I got to hold you close, get lost in your scent and the feel of you, and then waking up to you half across my body. That is one of life’s greatest gifts. You belong there, it’s like you’re sculptured to match me, to touch me.”
Adam brings their joined hands up to his lips and presses soft kisses to each knuckle.
“Even when you’re furious at me I just want to be close to you and I know you feel the same. Remember Vegas, baby? You were so pissed and all you really wanted was for me to hold you. And I had been the stupidest, dumbest ass, so worried about not stepping over your boundaries that I hurt you. It still hurts, you know? That I didn’t know how to handle it. When I wrote Broken Open I really thought I knew, and always would know, how to deal with a friend falling apart. Maybe it was because it was far from friendship I was feeling, maybe it was because I was too invested. Anyway…”
The door slams behind Tommy and he hisses low and dangerous, “What the hell was that?” with barely controlled anger flaming in his eyes.
“The dry humping my ass! And the ‘isn’t he pretty?’! What the hell is your game Adam?”
It’s the first time ever Adam has seen Tommy angry and even though Adam has a pretty good idea of what this is all about and that he’s pretty sure this has nothing to do with the stage antics-that by the way weren’t much different than any other night- he’s still a little fascinated with this side of Tommy. Maybe if he pushes his buttons just a little more, Tommy might let him get to the root of said problem. “That was humping your ass, doesn’t take much explaining does it? And you didn’t seem to mind. And you are pretty, no scratch that, you’re gorgeous. Beautiful even. Besides, it’s nothing we haven’t done before baby.”
“Don’t mock me!” Tommy raises his voice and paces the floor, sending Adam small angry glares, like he’s scared if he looks at Adam too long, he won’t be able to control what is boiling inside him. “Why did you do that?”
“I don’t know,” Adam shrugs. “It felt right and you said I could. Whatever. Why are you upset about this?”
Throwing his hands in the air and eyes fixed on a spot behind Adam, Tommy yells, “Because you confuse me! I get so many mixed signals from you that I don’t know what to believe. And things are…well, you know…bad… and I need to at least know where I have you, because today it just felt like you were cockblocking me.”
“What?” Adam drags the word out in a high pitched tone. “Why would I cockblock you?”
“I don’t know, if I knew that I wouldn’t stand here yelling at you.” He isn’t really yelling anymore, though he’s far from calm either.
Knowing that Tommy is finally getting to the point where a real conversation is possible, Adam takes one careful step closer to him and says softly, “Maybe you should stop it then and just tell me what the hell is going on in that pretty head of yours.”
Tommy isn’t done yet, though. But he doesn’t move away from Adam either. “I feel like shouting, I’m angry for fucks sake. I feel like I’m a God damn toy you take out and play with until you get tired of me and end up tossing me into a forgotten corner; but the second a new kid shows interest you just have to claim ownership, and you don’t fucking share, do ya’?”
Adam swallows, he fucked up and he only just realized how bad. He’d hurt Tommy and that was the last thing he wanted. The morning after that mindblowing kiss at the club and the waking up in each other’s arms had been over way too soon when Lane had popped her head in and asked Tommy to call his mother. Half an hour later Tommy had told them all that his dad was sick, dying actually and nothing could be done. And Adam had decided to give Tommy all the space he needed, backing off completely. Not in ways of talking, they did plenty of that but no more inappropriate touches. Tommy had enough on his mind as it was. But now Tommy is thinking this is about something entirely else and that means Adam fucked up even worse.
“Tommy?” Adam’s voice is tiny, regretful.
With his back to Adam, staring out the window, shoulders so tense Adam’s own almost hurt from it, he says in a too restrained, too cold tone, “The last time something like this happened was the night we made out in that club. I had the perfect opportunity for some action but oh no, you throw in a dare and made me work like I’ve never had to work for a fucking kiss before.”
Tommy turns around and pins Adam to the floor with a hard stare. “And it was good… or at least I thought it was, but then you go all cold on me. For the last month the only physical interactions you and I’ve had is on stage or if I’m practically begging for a hug. But today? Today I get my fucking hair tousled, my shoulders rubbed and several hugs without asking for any and you amp it up on stage too. Humping my fucking ass, not that I’m complaining about that, but if it’s not about you thinking I’m hooking up with Delmy again, then what the hell is it?”
“Delmy’s here?” Adam had no idea and he sure didn’t like the sound of it either, had he known he might actually have tried to get in the way of that, but as for now it came as a complete shock. The jealousy burns hot, fast and devastating and makes his stomach feel like it’s burning with acid.
Tommy’s voice carries a lot of distrust but there is also something off there, like he’s a bit hurt. “You didn’t know?” he looks away and so quietly that Adam knows the words aren’t meant for him, that Tommy is doing that thing where he think out loud without realizing he’s doing it, he says. “So you’re not cockblocking. It’s really about me then. Fuck.”
Adam isn’t sure what that means though, and chooses to answer the question he knows was for him. “No. Are you guys?”
Tommy whips his head up and with large eyes he hurries the words out. “No of course not. No, she talked to Lisa and when she found out about Dad being sick she decided to come see how I was doing… Guess she didn’t quite believe me when we talked on the phone and I said I was fine.”
“She’s right you know,” Adam says matter of factly.
“You’re not okay, and it’s quite understandable you’re scared, and I’ve been so afraid to push you over the edge that I’ve been walking on egg shells. I didn’t know what to do and apparently I did all the wrong things. I’m sorry Tommy. I just figured you had enough on your mind to…” He wants to say ‘deal with me too’ but he knows Tommy will be pissed again if he does, so instead he moves on to what made him toss all caution out the window and just do what felt right. “But then you practically purred today when I touched you and I just kinda thought to hell with it and did what felt right.”
Sounding more and more like the normal laid back Tommy, he asks with a raised eyebrow, “Humping my ass on stage felt right to you?”
Adam can’t help it, he grins. “It’s a nice ass.” When Tommy tosses a glance over his shoulder and down his back, shrugging; Adam reaches out to grab his hand and pull him back to focus on the more serious stuff. When their eyes meet Adam gets out what’s been eating at him for a long time. “No, but seriously Tommy, after that kiss and you getting the news about your dad being sick later that day… I just… thought you might need space from me.”
“Why?” Tommy tilts his head and looks at Adam with a speculative gaze. “Why would I need that? You’re my best friend. Damnit Adam you know I’m like you, touchy-feely. I need you to ground me. My mind is a fucking mess and you avoid me? It was just a kiss for fucks sake!”
For a second there is something looking much like denial playing in Tommy’s eyes and Adam is split between thinking he imagined it and hoping it didn’t flash there because Tommy didn’t want to think about the kiss, but no matter what, Adam is sort of desperate to know now that they’re talking about it. “I-- You can’t tell me that kiss didn’t make you feel anything because I was there Tommy. And you just said it was a good kiss.”
Nodding in agreement to Adam’s last statement, Tommy asks, “What do you want me to say? That it turned me on? I have no problem in admitting that but we didn’t do anything, we slept in your bed, snuggled close and that was good too. Why make this into something it isn’t?”
Adam’s heavy sigh echoes in the room. “Because I’m gay and maybe I thought that my straight, though very laid back straight friend, getting turned on by kissing his gay best friend would be enough for him to freak out, and I thought that with the news of your dad and all you just needed space. From me.”
“Well it didn’t freak me out, I would never have accepted your dare if it would have. I fucking know myself, give me some credit. And just so you know. I’ve felt like climbing the God damn walls, going nuts because you kept shying away from me… and because I’m scared like hell.”
Adam feels like he’s too far away from Tommy to have this conversation, and as if they have some kind of secret cue they both move toward each other until they’re standing in a warm embrace. Holding on tightly, Adam murmurs, “I know you are baby, and I wish I could tell you that things are going to be fine.”
Tommy finishes the sentence quietly. “But you can’t, I know. You can however cuddle me and make me feel a bit more… like I’m safe, loved.”
Adam presses a kiss to Tommy’s temple. “Yeah I can do that. I’m sorry.”
Tommy gigglesnorts and Adam pulls away enough to gain eye contact. “What?”
Grinning, Tommy asks, “You sorry enough to kiss me again? That kiss was kinda mindblowing, I bet not one thought of Dad would get through if you kissed me like that again.”
Trapped with the urge to do just that and the need to keep his own fucking heart from breaking, Adam says in a reprimanding tone, “Don’t lead the gay guy on baby, that’s not nice.”
Tommy lets out a sigh and breaks their gaze. He snuggles into Adam’s arms again and Adam isn’t sure if the words mumbled against his chest really are, “What if I’m not leading you on?” or if he just really wants them to be.
“I’m still sorry for putting you through it, but also I think that maybe it was for the best. Maybe we would have rushed into this too soon, too unprepared, too immature, if that terrible thing with your dad hadn’t happened. My grandmother used to say: “there’s nothing so bad that it’s not good for something else.” No matter how insensitive that sounds, there is some truth to that. But it doesn’t make things easier when you’re knee high in deep shit.”
Adam lets go of Tommy’s hand and scoots a bit closer, needing to feel the heat coming from him, to feel connected. The moment Adam settles, Tommy moves closer, fitting his small figure perfectly into Adam’s and making Adam sigh contently. “That night you got the message that he had passed away. That was one of the most difficult nights in my life. Your pain almost killed me.”
Adam is pulled out of his sleep because of a timid little knock on the door as a softly spoken “Adam?” travels through to him. He’s immediately wide awake knowing only one person would do that and only for one reason. Fuck.
He hauls on his pajama pants and hurries across the floor. Opening the door, his gaze meets Tommy’s and the pain Adam sees paralyzes him for a minute; he’s so not ready for this kind of pain and least of all from Tommy, it tears Adam’s heart apart.
Blinking hard and with a broken voice, Tommy asks, “Can I…come…” when his voice deserts him Adam jolts into motion, flinging the door open and pulling Tommy into his arms. “Fuck,” Adam says into Tommy’s hair and a shudder ripples through Tommy.
“Yeah,” he says and then after what feels like an eternity he adds, “Lisa called, he’s gone.”
Adam doesn’t know what to say other than “I’m sorry,” so he just holds him close, hoping it’ll tell Tommy what he needs to know. For a long while they just stand there rocking back and forth in a comforting monotone motion. Tommy is the first to break the silence. “I have to go home, I’m sorry Adam, I know-”
“Shhh. Don’t you dare to worry about that. None of your concern,” Adam murmurs and guides them closer to the bed without easing up on the hug.
“Shhh.” Somehow Adam manages to get Tommy to sit down on the bed and then he pulls back gently. “Just stay here, I’ll make a quick call and make sure your travel arrangements get taken care of and then I’ll be back.”
Tommy nods slowly, lost in his own headspace. “Yeah, okay.”
“Get under the duvet baby; you’re not going back to your room tonight.” Another nod and with a numb face Tommy strips his clothes until he’s in a t-shirt and briefs. Adam stays, watching until Tommy is in bed curled up in a ball, arms around himself. With an aching heart, Adam calls Lane and asks her to do what needs to be done.
Minutes later he crawls onto the mattress and under the duvet. Tommy doesn’t move, doesn’t even look at Adam, and that’s when Adam sees the tears, silently falling. He feels his own eyes water and blinks the wetness away; without words he folds himself around Tommy and holds him tight, just letting him know he’s there. Breathing.
At some point Tommy’s tension leaves a little bit and he turns to look at Adam. His eyes are red from crying and tears are stuck in his long lashes. Adam wipes them away with a soft caress and let his fingers linger on Tommy’s face.
Licking his lip before biting down on it, Tommy brings his own hand up mirroring Adam’s touch. He runs his fingertips over Adam’s cheek bones, forehead and lips. Adam sees his intention, feels it in his body that responds so fucking willingly to Tommy’s. When Tommy inches closer, eyes focused on Adam’s lips Adam puts a hand on his chest. “Tommy. No,” he whispers right before their lips touch. Tommy jerks his head back, the hurt caused by the rejection evident in his eyes.
“I just… I need… I need…” he says as he tries to get out of the bed, out of Adam’s arms. Adam doesn’t let him, with his entire body he keeps Tommy close, keeps their gazes locked. “I know, but it’ll screw things up because this isn’t really what you want, and you need a friend much more than a distraction.”
“I’m sorry Adam, I shouldn’t have…”
Adam runs a hand through Tommy’s hair, soothing. Trying to do exactly what Tommy asked him to a couple of days earlier, grounding him. “Don’t be. Tell me about him instead. Tell me what you loved the most about him or the things he did that pissed you off. Anything, just don’t shut me out.”
“I wasn’t.” Tommy’s voice is tiny, broken, hurt and Adam fights his own tears.
He feels every little bit of Tommy’s pain and he wants nothing more than to take it from Tommy, to make his heart lighter again. “Yeah you were, but it’s okay. I’ll make out with you any other day.”
That makes a tentative smile tug at the corner of Tommy’s lips, and slowly words start spilling from him, gently nudged by soft caring questions from Adam.
Thinking back on that night, Adam rakes his fingers through the soft strands of Tommy’s hair, the exact same way as he did that night. “None of us got any sleep that night, but up to that point that was by far the most intimate night we’d spent together and I got to know your dad a little even though it was through your memories. You were so loved and your dad made sure you knew it.”
Adam lies silent and thoughtful for a minute, just relishing in the feeling of Tommy’s body against his own.
“I don’t know what happened when you were home, but you came back faster than any of us had ever anticipated and you were dead set on giving everything you had. We were all so worried about you! Especially when it became pretty obvious that you very deliberately avoided time alone with me. Neil of all people told me to corner you and make you talk. Every time I tried to do that you just told me you had it covered. I don’t think I’ve ever been that hurt before.”
Adam’s heart is pounding in his chest; he never once thought he would have to manipulate Tommy to make him talk to him. “Tommy? Can we talk? Please.”
Tommy looks at Adam with a haunted expression in his eyes before they flicker across the living area in the bus, and the defeat is evident when he realizes they are alone. He huffs out a sigh. “Sure. What’s on your mind?”
Adam eyes the spot on the couch next to Tommy. “Can I?”
Tommy nods and moves a little, so they won’t touch and gestures for Adam to sit down. Adam screams silently in his head at Tommy; he wants to hug him, to hold him close and to share his pain, but ever since Tommy came back he’s shied away from Adam’s touch and most of the time he’ll even excuse himself the moment Adam enters the room.
“How are you?” Adam deliberately keeps his voice soft and low, he doesn’t want to give Tommy any kind of excuse to leave. He wants to reconnect, that’s all.
Tommy glances at him before wrapping his arms around his legs and putting his chin on his knees. “I’m alright,” he says, but he doesn’t look at Adam, he’s staring at the carpet instead.
Afraid to move closer, to comfort Tommy the way he really wants to, Adam stays put and murmurs, “I don’t believe that. You just lost your dad.”
“Yeah. But you don’t need to worry, I’m dealing.” Tommy sounds defiant, and Adam can’t help but to think he’s trying to convince himself as much as he’s trying to convince Adam of it.
“I’m here baby, whenever you need me. I’m right here.”
Tommy worries his lip, catches it between his teeth so hard Adam knows it’s gonna leave a bruise.
“Yeah,” Tommy begins, “listen, it’s not- um, I think it might be wise of me not to…” He stops his stuttering attempt to speak and hides his head between his arms. His voice is muffled when he decides to speak again. “Shit! First, I’m sorry for that night. You know when my…” his voice trails off, the embarrassment and hurt he tries to cover up breaks Adam’s heart.
“Don’t say that. I’m glad you let me be there for you. I wish you’d let me be here for you now as well.”
“Yeah about that… I think I need to back off for a while, you know.”
Adam wishes Tommy would look up. “Oh.You mean on stage, that’s okay we can-”
“No, I mean this, you and me; I don’t care about the stage antics.”
Tommy sounds dead tired and for the first time Adam feels like this could be the end of them, so his voice trembles and he’s unable to hold his terror back when he says, “You don’t… you don’t want me to be your friend?”
Tommy whips his head up, stares at Adam and he sounds down right upset. “Of course I do, but I don’t want you to think I’m crawling into your bed because I need a friend, I got Mike for that.”
“Oh. Okay.” Adam says, clueless to what Tommy means.
“No actually it’s not okay, but it’s the way it has to be because I can’t lose you as well, and that’s why I can’t keep running back to you.”
Adam is utterly confused. “I feel like we’re talking in code here and I don’t have the key for yours.”
Tommy sighs. “Yeah we do that a lot and that’s why we’d fuck things up if I can’t deal on my own.”
“Mike is helping with that?” Adam asks, because he needs to get at least that one cleared out of the way.
“He knows me, we talk.” Tommy shrugs. His gaze is locked at the carpet again and Adam misses the connection immediately.
Adam knows he’s about to push it but he needs to know that there is at least one person Tommy can talk to if he won’t talk to him. “So if you’re really sad you can actually pour your heart out to him?”
A quick glare is sent Adam’s way and harshly Tommy says, “You make it sound like because he’s a straight guy we can’t share our feelings. I’ve known him all my life, even if I wanted to keep a secret from him I wouldn’t be able to.”
“Okay. If you say so.”
Adam can’t hold the doubt out of his voice and Tommy looks at him pleading. “Adam? Please.”
“Fine! It’s just…You confuse me. I thought you said you needed my hugs, us being close like this, to ground you.” He knows he sounds like a spoiled kid that just got denied his favorite candy, but damn it this rejection hurts.
“I did… I do… but you seem to think it’s for all the wrong reasons and I can’t-- we can’t be more cuddly together than we are with the rest of the group.”
“Is that what you need?”
“Yeah I need a little bit of distance.”
Adam sighs; he knows by now he’ll do just about anything for Tommy, even if it kills him to do it. “I know you probably won’t understand this but can I get Mike’s number?”
“If you don’t feel comfortable talking to me. Then I need to know that I can get a hold of someone you do feel comfortable around. Just in case.”
“The hamster jumps off the wheel and takes off??” Tommy snorts but nods thoughtfully.
“Yeah. And please, Tommy, if you change your mind? I’ll be here to cuddle the fuck out of you and listen to whatever you feel like saying. I do love you, you know?! And that’s what friends are for.”
“And therein lies the problem,” Tommy says quietly.