Cover by dapatty
Mikey often feels a bit...not like life is unfair or any shit like that, because he's a fucking rock star, and he's not a self-centered shit-head. Being a rock star is awesome, but, like, the rest of his life is totally fucking ridiculous.
Okay, living on a bus (or in a van) and playing bass with his big brother is totally fucking ridiculous, but, like, the awesome kind of ridiculous. The rest of his life is the not awesome kind of ridiculous.
(1) His entire family are, like, curse magnets. There's this ancient family bible at home that lists out all the curses that have been cast on them, starting in scratchy ink and weird spelling with extra Us and Hs. People have stuck extra paper in, over the years, and the list now runs to fourteen pages.
(2) Mikey is the baby. Curses flow to the bottom. Mikey is the most cursed.
Gerard thinks it's fucking hilarious that Mikey regularly turns into the least impressive animals ever all the fucking time (it's for the hamster I'm gonna buy. Fucking buy? Fucking Gerard. The wheel wasn't even any good). It took forever to work out the schedule for Mikey's changes, and it's always a pain in the ass to make sure that they're not playing a show, or that Cortez is ready to go on because Mikey suddenly has no fingers and a tail. Who the fuck can keep a track of the moon cycles on Saturn?
Other than Ray Toro. Ray Toro is a god amongst men and also has the best hair for hiding in. Except when he's writing music. Or producing music. Or stat'ing up a new Druid character for Gerard's game. Then he can't remember what day it is and all the tracking he does is useless because, while he knows that Mikey will grow fur and whiskers next Tuesday, he forgets today is next Tuesday. The hair thing is always true, though, and he never minds Mikey nesting in it.
Frankie tries to keep track, too - he's more organised than Mikey, and they have a big chart up on the wall of their apartment that Frank mostly remembers to keep updated when they're home, and Frank knits little rodent cosies for Mikey to snuggle in, in case he turns into something tropical in the middle of a Jersey winter. The Frankie-cosies are usually in fucking weird-ass colors, but they smell like Frank and safe and home..
Bob doesn't believe that any of the small animals that turn up are Mikey. Like, point blank just decides that it's impossible that the tiny mouse or hedgehog or squirrel or gerbil or whatever is Mikey and doesn't believe it. Even when Mikey changed right in front of him, from vole to naked human in the blink of an eye, Bob just made a comment about exhibitionist fucking bandmates and refused to talk about it.
(Otter believed. Otter just also thought that Mikey was insulting him by never turning into an otter.)
Gerard is an asshole, but, like, a safe asshole. Every instinct Mikey has when he's small and furry tell him to run to Gee and burrow into his pockets or hair or hands. Gerard only teases the fucking shit out of Mikey when Mikey is both human and dressed, so, like, that's okay. He also keeps the best food pellets in his pockets, and that's fucking awesome.
It would just be much better if the animals he turned into were less fucking tiny and crappy (fuck cute. Mikey is already everyone's little brother, he has had e-fucking-nough of being cute).
Then one Monday on the bus he wakes up and his ears feel weird and so do his teeth and his paws are like wings.
He takes a while to get out of his bunk and he nearly gets his left wing caught on the curtain, but he eventually gets free and flies all up into Gee's face and Gee almost hits him right out of the air before he realizes it's Mikey. "MikeyWay! You're a fucking bat."
"He's a fucking vampire bat" Frank shouts from behind Gerard, pulling Gerard's hands down and away from Mikey. "Mikes, you can't eat Gee's blood, he's too fucking pale already."
Gerard huffs and turns around to face Frank. "Frankie." He says, using the voice he generally keeps for explaining things to little kids. "Mikey needs to eat, and he's only tiny so he won't take much blood. And anyway, he can't eat you, you'll just get sick."
"I wasn't fucking offering! And I would not get sick. Dick." Frank breaks off into ridiculous giggles, and really, flying is tiring and there's really not enough space on this bus to swoop right so Mikey lands on Gerard's back. He can clamber about using his claws, which is kind of cool.
"Right then." Gerard nods and tries to turn his head so he can see Mikey on his back.
"Gee-eeee. You know that to drink your blood Mikey will have to, like, bite you. With his little needle teeth?"
Mikey can feel Gerard shudder, and he tries to pat him, but it's hard with his wing-hands. It's not like he really wanted to eat Gerard anyway... like, he'd probably do it if he had to, but the idea is weirdly incestuous.
Gerard takes a deep breath and lets it out slowly. Mikey tries to climb around him under his arm. Avoiding Gerard's neck seems like a good idea right now.
"I. Mikey's my brother, if he needs my blood he can have it." Mikey can feel the unsteadiness in his breathing, can feel Gerard's pulse under his hands... paws? Mikey flexes his grip a little and nods. Hands.
Ray pokes his head out from his bunk. "Why are we talking about bloo...Oh." He pulls back the curtain and starts climbing out. "Hey, Mikey finally got to be something cool!"
Bob rattles his curtain open. "This band is fucking ridiculous." He huffs. "If you're going to insist random, possibly rabid, animals are your brother any time he goes missing, you have to get the right food for them and not fucking let them bite you." Bob shoves his way out of the bunk and past Gerard and Frank to the kitchen.
Gerard runs a finger over the top of Mikey's head, scritching it, while Frank holds his finger out for Mikey to grip onto.
"Mikes, your wings are totally fucking awesome." Frank almost-whispers.
Bob is rattling around in the fridge, and Mikey can hear things thumping on the floor where Bob is throwing them behind him, and then there is a smell. A delicious, tangy, rich smell that makes Mikey want to flex his wings and swoop. The only reason he doesn't is that he'd probably end up terminally entangled with either the bus or his band.
Bob comes back into the bunk area with a pack of steak... Bob's special, the-next-venue-has-a-grill, he-knows-this-from-his-tech-crew-learnings, steak. Mikey loves Bob.
"Give it this, Gerard, and you fucking owe me." Bob puts the pack of steak down on Mikey's bunk and climbs back into his own bunk. "And you can start paying me back by shutting the fuck up." Bob rattles his curtain closed again.
Bob's steak is delicious, Mikey loves Bob and demonstrates it by swooping past his bunk, silently (except when he scares the crap out of Ray by unexpectedly landing in his hair, making Ray scream. That's kind of awesome, even if Mikey feels guilty about the noise).
Mikey falls asleep sucking out the steak's tasty goodness and wakes up with his face pillowed on meat. It's kind of gross, and not the sort of problem he usually has with his non-badass transformations but, fuck it, he got to be a vampire bat and it was amazing.