He is not everything she ever wanted to be, but he is half of it, if her desire for fame/glory/lust/violence/divinity can be said to be a finite whole. He wears masculinity like an old white muscle shirt, like the cigarette tucked behind his ear, both easily removed and easily burned. Like her, he is nothing but a façade, masks all the way down to the bone; but not a construct, no. There is no artifice between he and she, or between the two of them and their monsters (humans and ghosts alike), just the truth: elaborately clothed and more honest than any bare-bones, stripped-down acoustic singer-songwriter could ever be; and though they differ in many, many other ways, they have one thing in common: they both love starting fires.
She sets her shoulders and lifts her chin, classical aggressive posturing, and he does the same. His eyes narrow, glancing her over, and hers droop seductively, though the glow of her irises is anything but; the false eyelashes are heavy, that's all. She is everything he wants, everything he could possibly seek in a woman, exaggerated to the extreme, femininity as analyzed microscopically and blown up one hundred times actual size. His gaze lingers on the spiked metal bodice, molded to her shape, forgiving no flaw and emphasizing each curve, and on the huge metal hoop-minus-skirt that nearly unbalances her, the skeleton of antebellum-era womanhood. She lets him look his fill, drinks in his awe; his simplicity overwhelms her at times. She craves him for it, envies it, almost; how easy it is, to be a boy. Or at least their perception of a boy, shaped by the bright flashes of cameras carried by princelings in a pop culture empire riding a wave of gendered expectations and ripped-from-the-headlines truths - bitch is a hermaphrodite and bitch is a lesbo slut and I told you she had a dick - she's proud of all the words thrown at her, but it still makes her question.
"Why should those things be insults, anyway?" she asks him, and he raises an eyebrow. "Why the fuck should they hurt?"
He glances down, and the set of his shoulders is sorrowful. He can't reply, of course, he doesn't have the words to do so. No one has asked him the right questions yet, except for her, and she's the only one he can't tell.
"You're fuckin' beautiful," he says instead, that gorgeous Sicilian accent rolling off his tongue. She can do quite a credible impression of it herself, but not now. She smiles and touches his crotch; he's already hard. Always is, as a matter of fact, a big silicone dick that hangs to the left, and when she strokes it, he moans, high-pitched and breathy, and, if things go as they usually do, eventually her own cries will sync with his; when they come, it's always together, and neither of them are ever silent. Why would you be, if the only one to hear you is your other half?
"Ms. Germanotta?" says a hesitant voice from the opposite side of the door, and she yanks her gaze away from him in annoyance.
"My name is Lady Gaga!" she shouts, then bites her lip hard; the assistant is a newbie, and doesn't know her rules yet - but he should, he should - and if he calls her by that name, the only wrong one of three she's stuck with over the years, then so it is.
"You asked me to get you fifteen minutes before rehearsal starts?"
"Yes, all right, thank you - I'll be right out. Thanks." She repeated herself, it sounds stupid; she hates it when she does that. Hates having to repeat herself at all, even for idiots who can't get her rules straight. My name is Lady Gaga, and this is my house.
She looks back to the mirror, but Jo has fled from sight. Still, he's not gone; she could never say that. Her body is used to housing more than one half-life inside of it, and Jo has always been there, in spirit if not in image.
"When you're lonely," she says to herself, and smiles. Her lipstick reaches past the edges of her mouth, the better to see from stage. "I'll be lonely too. And together…"
She trails off, turns from the mirror, and with Jo she goes to greet the fame.