What was so unfair in anorexia was that even if there was that great revelation, the dramatic turning point, it, by itself, didn't cure anything. First it was all deny deny, deny, and when you finally saw that really, you weren't on a path of a healthier life choice to become a better you, you were truly sick in the head and your body was breaking down... Well, it didn't get really much easier from that point. Before you just wanted to lose weight, but now you both wanted to lose weight and gain weight, and you felt anxious and guilty for both. Add the fear of dying of a heart attack, and Adam's life was just nifty, thanks for asking.
Adam lounged on the couch, armed with his computer and a double layer of comfort wear. He was getting better, he truly was. They had even released him from the high-class private facility (or not so private since all those privileged fourteen year olds with body image issues had Twitter accounts.) and now he was home. If only because he had very strongly insisted, and he hadn't been released to live on his own, but it was still a huge step. His mom and Kris had practically moved in with him, and a nurse visited daily with her scale of doom and an opportunity for mom and Kris to rat him out for every stray from the straight and narrow.
Kris wandered in the room and came to stand behind the couch, and then peered in, trying to make out the computer screen. Adam had been Google News -surfing himself.
"What are you going to tell?"
"Anything she asks, really. I don't think that I have anything left to hide at this point." Or any dignity left, for that matter. His sickness had stayed as a gossip blog coke rumor for a long time, until his mom had gotten scared enough to get a court to order him under a legal custody and get him involuntarily committed. No one in the know had been surprised when that exploded in the media and again Adam ended up, not only in gossip rags but in columns in New York Times as an example of the decline of the American society and as the punch line of late night show jokes.
Now he was home, but there was no going out without a horde of paparazzis following his every move. Maybe his stint on Oprah tomorrow would settle people down.
Adam adjusted his position to support the laptop on a better angle. Kris grabbed a couple of pillows and stuffed them behind his lower back. Ah. Better.
Adam's house was now littered with small pillows. It wasn't a decorating choice; Adam had to slip a pillow under his bony ass to sit comfortable on hard chairs, and he wouldn't do it if there wasn't a pillow at an arm's reach when he sat down.
His house was also filled with food. It felt mildly disgusting. Healthy food, not so healthy, whatever he wanted, ready to eat and in unthreateningly small portions, so he wouldn't have the time to think twice when the mood to eat hit him. On the cupboard sat the nutrition drinks. He had officially agreed to continue taking them. That had been one of the conditions for discharging him. Eating that crap was his penance: three times a day, under a watchful eye of his mom or Kris.
He was a full grown man and giving someone else the power to decide what he was supposed to be eating... It was like letting someone else to be in charge of his hygiene products, or underwear. Like someone would be pre-approving his internet use. (Adam suspected that Kris actually kept tabs on his browser history, and he left it uncleaned just for that.) But he had been three pounds away from tubing, and if he could do something to lessen that worry on their faces, now that he wasn't three sheets to the wind, he would do it.
After a while (After Adam's strong non-verbal hinting that he was fine, go already), Kris returned to the basement studio. This time he was allowed to write his own songs, but his company sure appreciated him doing some of the production without renting studio time. Kris was more than fine with it, since it got him the excuse to stay at Adam's. Although, to keep his cover story up, he had to actually work every now and then.
When Adam was sure that Kris had settled in the basement, he got up. His mom was away for the day and it was great that Kris trusted him to be on his own. Adam continued to the weight room. He knew what he was doing. Really.
So. What to do? There was no need to change for this, his clothes were loose and stripping off a layer would only make him feel chilly. Stair climber looked inviting, but Adam didn't think he would be up to that. He decided on some light cycling. That would be healthy. He adjusted the exercise level, his eyes automatically tuned to follow the calorie counter.
"What are you doing?" Busted. There was anger in Kris' voice. Better that than disappointment, which was harder to handle.
"I'm in a weight room. What does it look like?"
Kris came to him and took a hold of his shoulder. "They said no physical activity for you without consulting the clinic first."
"Kris, it's just some light exercise, I'm not even sweating!"
Kris looked like he was at loss. "Adam, you don't have any excess energy to burn."
"C'mon, I need to get fitter!"
"I said no." Kris kept his hold of him; he was close to physically dragging Adam away from the exercise bike.
"You aren't supposed to strain yourself in any way today, Adam. If you are exhausted tomorrow, the Oprah will have to be rescheduled, and frankly, it looks like that isn't even that remote a possibility right now."
Kris could rat him out to the nurse Ratchet, and that could be it. Staying at home wasn't just about the number on the scale, but it was about him being able to follow the rules. Shit. Adam climbed off the bike with as much dignity as he could muster.
"I wasn't going to burn calories, I just wanted to know where I was at."
"I know, but you can't just make decisions like that by yourself right now." Adam wasn't sure if Kris believed him. "And you have a muscle and body mass testing next week, anyway."
"Off you go. I will bring you your shake."
And back to the couch it was. Adam felt like sulking, but what good would that do. He also felt like just lying there and closing his eyes. He wasn't tired tired, but just physically drained.
"Shit that was stupid. Now I'm totally dead." And how it was possible that he had slipped back to unhealthy thought patterns, without even noticing?
"Yes, it was." Kris handed him the nutrition drink. He didn't look angry anymore, only sort of dreary.
Adam sipped his drink, this time simulating... chocolate? He checked the label. The sludge tasting like soy and feeling like grease happily announced to be cocoa flavored. Yuck.
Kris sat on the couch and picked up the remote. Adam knew that after his stunt, there was no way Kris was leaving him alone for the rest of the day. Adam finished his drink and let his body slide to the side to lean against Kris' shoulder. It felt kinda nice.
Until Kris poked his neck. "Hey, don't go napping on me, you'll be all crooked when you wake up."
Adam tried to settle back to his slumber. "But I'm tired, and my bed is soo far away."
"I'll carry you."
"Not going to work."
"C'mon, you are a stick. It will be easy." At least they had reached the state of comfort where Kris calling Adam a stick didn't turn things awkward.
"Okay, but it's your funeral." Kris flashed a smile at him. Adam seldom let him do things for him, and letting him be this chivalrous was a record winning occurrence. "And if you'll drop me, you'll go to Oprah tomorrow instead."
With extreme care, Kris gathered Adam to his arms and lifted him up. Adam wrapped his arms around Kris' neck and leaned against Kris' chest. It was a nice chest. Adam mouthed Kris' neck and planted a kiss where he found skin above the collar. That made Kris pause, but he didn't stop or ask what was that about. With no visible strain Kris slowly carried him upstairs and to his bedroom.
Lying on his bed, Adam didn't feel so tired anymore. "Stay."
Kris stood there, hesitant. He immediately knew what this was about. "To sleep, or...?"
"To have sex. The whole deal. It's been a freaking long time."
Kris looked hopeful. Now it was only about Kris being able to give himself a permission to have what he wanted.
"C'mon, let's try it. It's a milestone in getting better, right?"
They had never touched intimately before. They had been slowly going towards to what had seem to be inevitable, but then this little thing of Adam trying to starve himself to death came between them. First Kris had been so angry with him for refusing to listen, for refusing to see what the hell Adam was doing to himself. After, when Adam and the whole fucking world realized what was really happening, Kris had acted like he was afraid of breaking Adam to pieces with a simple touch. Adam had been so wrapped into his own sickness to even really notice when his desires faded away.
Now, though, Kris wasn't afraid of touching him anymore, and Adam's libido seemed to be back. Not entirely, but why wouldn't he let Kris enjoy. He deserved it.
"Okay." And yes, Kris had obviously made his decision. "Okay! Let's... Let's get you out of those clothes, first."
Kris helped him to remove his clothes. Adam shivered. How had he forgotten how unattractive he was? "Turn off the lights?"
"No, there is no need." Kris kept looking at him, his ugly body lying there, like wanting to prove that Kris didn't see him disgusting.
Kris grabbed pillows to prop him in a comfortable position. The pillows wouldn't run out, it rather looked like Adam's queen sized bed was the queen bee breeding the pillows that had taken over the house.
Adam arranged his face to show a pinched smile. "I thought that I wasn't to strain myself today?"
"Says the guy who sneaked in the gym."
Adam watched as Kris stripped his clothes quickly. He was so gorgeous and Adam... was not. "You sure about this?"
Kris smiled at him for assurance. "Just let me take care of everything, okay?"
They had sex, and by god how could he have survived this long without? Adam laid there and let Kris do all the work, let him give it to him, and he was gentle as hell, Kris was fucking loving in the way he caressed Adam's thin skin and wrapped his fingers so easily to cover fully Adam's thin bony wrists.
Afterwards, Adam felt pliant and safe and exhausted in a good way. He didn't want to move, but sleeping naked would only make him wake up shivering later. "Pass me my pajama?"
Kris felt around the floor in hopes that he would be able to find the clothes at arm's reach, but was eventually forced to rouse from the bed. He grabbed the clothes and threw them towards Adam's head, but at the same time he couldn't help asking, "Do you need some help?"
Adam gestured that he was fine and wiggled himself into the pajama pants. "You really liked to be in charge, didn't you?"
Kris looked at him. That was what genuine affection looked like. "Yeah, I guess so."
"Never though you to be a care taker top."
Kris brushed away Adam's hands to button Adam's pajama top himself. "Me neither."