Stream the podfic:
Frank stretched under the covers, yawning, and cracked one eye open to watch sleepily as Gerard padded across the room in what he probably thought was a stealthy manner. He failed miserably at stealth, however, as he stumbled over a pile of dirty clothes (dirty in Frank’s eyes, though he’d be unsurprised if Gerard later ended up in a shirt from said pile), swore as he rammed his hip into the corner of the low dresser, and then swore again as Frank’s guitar started to slide against the wall. Gerard dove for it and set it upright, murmuring something soothing to it.
Frank shifted and grinned into his pillow, not letting Gerard know he’d awakened him. He’d only feel bad, and Frank always woke up when Gee tried to slip out of bed in the early morning hours anyway. Sometimes Frank endeavored to convince him to stay, usually with success, but some days he just let Gerard go, let him create. Graphic novels rarely wrote themselves after all. No matter how cool that would be. He heard the quiet snick of the bedroom door closing, and allowed himself another, fuller stretch, then slipped back off into slumber, content.
When he woke again, there was way more light spilling in around the cheap blinds and his phone was blaring at him, Glenn Danzig informing him that it was time to get up. Frank groaned but didn’t allow himself the option of snoozing, and instead sat up to turn off the alarm. He pulled on a pair of Gerard’s pyjama pants, rolled up the cuffs, and picked his way across the floor of the tiny bedroom, avoiding all the pitfalls Gerard had encountered hours earlier.
Frank was unsurprised to see both Way brothers in the kitchen, filling coffee mugs from two different pots, never seeing eye to eye on what constituted good coffee. Frank privately thought Mikey’s machine made coffee just fine, but he wasn’t ever going to tell Gerard that. Instead he grabbed his mug from its place on the counter and thrust it in Gerard’s direction. Gerard grinned at him, black smudges already staining his left cheek and right temple, and filled it up.
Mikey screwed the lid onto his travel mug and took a sip. “Alicia’s still asleep,” he said, which Frank interpreted to mean “No sex in the common areas,” though it could have also have meant “Don’t be loud,” or “No guitar.” Whatever. Frank didn’t really have time for anything but breakfast and getting dressed. He had to be at Concrete Studios by ten, and they were all the way across town.
He waved Mikey out, kissed Gerard good morning, and sipped at his coffee while Gerard wandered over to the toaster and put a couple pieces of bread in. Frank helped himself to some Rice Krispies, made a distressed sound in his throat when he saw that they were out of soy milk, and poured some two percent over the cereal instead. He handed the bowl to Gerard, who smiled at him in thanks and handed him the toast. Frank slathered some peanut butter on the bread and chewed happily, leaning against the counter, feet crossed at the ankles.
Gerard finished his cereal first, leaned in to kiss Frank’s cheek, then wandered off to draw some more. Frank watched him by the window for a while, watched as Gerard became absorbed in the story he was telling in black ink first, colors later, and then rinsed his plate and mug before placing them in the dishwasher. He followed them with Gerard’s bowl and spoon, then took himself off to the small bathroom.
The shower water was cold when Frank stepped in, and it took a fucking age to heat up. He grumbled some about how long Mikey must have been in there, but since it was technically his and Alicia’s apartment, Frank knew he really didn’t have the right to bitch. Once clean and dry, he picked his toothbrush out from the holder with the other three, and his razor from the other two (the pink ones under the sink clearly didn’t count) and used Gerard’s hair products and eyeliner to make himself presentable.
He put on the previous day’s jeans, and one of his shirts that lived in Gerard’s closet, and grabbed his hoodie from where it had landed on the dresser the night before. He grabbed Gerard’s mug from him as he breezed past, refilled it from the correct pot, added two spoonfuls of sugar and too much cream, and took it back to Gerard. But instead of placing it back in its usual spot, Frank held onto the mug, hesitating. Hovering. Waiting.
Eventually Gerard’s hand reached out, grasped only empty air, and he looked up, confusion in his expression until he saw Frank. “Thanks, Frankie,” he said, taking the coffee with a smile.
“Yeah.” (Long pause) “So, um. Bob’s thinking of maybe going back to Chicago? In a few months.” Bob was more than thinking about it, really, already talking to Patrick and Pete about places available near them.
“Yeah?” Gerard asked, his eyes back on the papers in front of him.
“Yeah. And I thought. Well. I’m getting way more work, right? I can maybe afford a place on my own. A one-bedroom. But maybe just a shitty one. Unless I found someone to just take Bob’s old room. But I don’t really want another roommate. Not like that.”
Gerard nodded. “Yeah, I’m glad Mikey let me stay, you know? We already know each other’s bad habits and shit. Don’t have to train anyone new.” He took his first sip of coffee. (Hum of coffee appreciation) “Perfect.”
Frank grinned. His boyfriend was kind of an oblivious dork. “Yeah. But maybe, like, if there was someone who already knew me. Knew my bad habits. I might not mind sharing with him.”
(Imperious tone)“Or her,” Gerard corrected. “Don’t rule out girls, Frankie, that’s not fair.”
(Firmly) “No, him,” Frank replied. “This better be a him. It better fucking well be a him because it better fucking well be you.”
Gerard finally looked up, his forehead crinkled. (Confused) “You want me to take Bob’s old room?”
(Little disbelieving laugh or huff) “No, you moron. I want you to share a one-bedroom with me. And maybe we could get something that’s not a total shit hole.”
Gerard’s eyes brightened and his expression cleared. (Surprised) “Oh! Oh. That . . . (Pause) That could be good.”
“Yeah?” Frank asked.
“Yeah.” Gerard stood and pulled Frank to him with a smile. “That would be very good.”