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The Grapes Of Wrath

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CHAPTER ONE:
THE PANTS

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Bill stood in front of the hotel mirror running one hand with a comb and one with a straightening iron through his silky black hair.

Lately his hair was getting long, and he liked leaving it drape around his shoulders rather than spiking it up, unless he was on stage. He turned off the hot iron and let it cool on the counter while he finished his makeup. 

Foundation, black shadow, black liquid liner, three coats of mascara, more eyeliner, blush, lipgloss. He'd been wearing makeup since he was in elementary school almost, and he was so glad his parents hadn't banned him from it. It's not like they were happy their son wore makeup, but they just assumed that he wanted to look like a badass rockstar. Their other son looked like some hoodlum from the ghettos, so they were used to having "expressive" children. Of course, combined with the early fame and fortune their sons had achieved musically, Bill and Tom's parents didn't have much say in their upbringing anyhow. They were just happy to have nice-enough kids who didn't do hard drugs.

Tom was lying on his bed, flicking through TV channels when Bill came out of the bathroom.

"Jost wants us downstairs in ten. Just letting you know," he said.

"Shit. Ok, I can get dressed fast." Compared to the relaxed pace Bill had been using while straightening his hair and doing his makeup, he was now rushing about the hotel room in his little black boxer-briefs, obviously pressed for time. He threw garment after garment from one suitcase to another. "Tomi, have you seen that grey tshirt with the black skull on it? I tried it on yesterday."

Tom barely glanced up from the MTV show he was paused on. "You threw it in my case by the window last I saw it."

Bill pulled said shirt over his head, and made a small struggle to get into his tight black jeans, while Tom flipped past the sports channels on TV. "Humph, there's like nothing on. Ready yet, Bill?"

Bill was putting on a leather jacket when Tom rolled himself off the bed and adjusted his large pants at the ankles. When he looked up, his brother was looking through his jewelry box, and was putting several long dangly necklaces around his neck.

"When'd you get those?" he asked while feeling down the wrinkles in his ridiculously large tshirt.

"New York. Remember when I said I went shopping?"

"Oh yeah. They're nice." he said dully, then added, "No offence, but they're a bit girly, even for you."

Though the comment visibly made Bill's face drop, he shrugged it off. "K, let's go, I'm done."

When they left the hotel room, their bandmates were just leaving theirs.

"Hey. So it’s that radio thing, and the shoot, and is that it?" Georg asked unenthusiastically as the four boys walked down the hall and to the elevators.

"Yeah, we're supposed to get mauled at the radio station though. They have a street-side view apparently."

"Great," remarked Gustav, sarcasm dripping from his tone.

"I for one, don't mind signing autographs." Bill smirked. "And the rest of you can just think of it as a large menu of easy lays."

Tom chuckled. "Not so easy for Georg."

"Dude, dry," said the bassist and smacked Tom just as they saw their manager in the lobby.

"Tweedledee, Tweedledum, Gee, Gee. All here, good," began David. "Go have breakfast now, Tobi and Deiter are down there. I'm speaking with the venue manager, see how bad they think it's gonna be. I'll tell you more on the way. Don't get stressed, it's only radio. You have a shoot after however, and the pics are going in Alternative Press. It's big in the States, so don't fuck up." His gaze stopped at the lead singer. "Bill, you can change your pants at the photo studio."

"What's wrong with my pants?" Bill pouted.

"They're too tight."

"Oh." Bill's face fell for the second time in five minutes. He really liked the way he looked today. His jeans rode low to show off his star tattoo, and they stuck to him like a second skin. He liked this pair of jeans so much, he'd decided to buy more jeans from the women's section. David couldn't stop him from wearing what he wanted.

That was the end of the discussion however, as David Jost took out his Blackberry again, and waved the four band members away to the hotel restaurant.

---

Cheers and catcalls erupted when Tokio Hotel arrived at a local radio station in New York. The street in front was packed with screaming and emotional teenage girls holding signs and proclaiming their love for the band. 

Security shoved Georg and Gustav out the van door first, and they cleared a small area for the twins to get out. Tom stepped out next, and then Bill. The cheers got louder and several "Tom!" "TOM!!" and "BILL!" were heard above all else. They had time to scribble a total of three autographs before Deiter, and members of the venue security team moved them along and into the building, almost forcibly.

The four were sat down at the broadcasting studio immediately, and microphones were shoved in the twins’ faces.

"So folks, we now have Tokio Hotel with us. They've been widely successful with our younger audience lately, both here in the States and back in their home country Germany. Hello guys, can we get your names and what you do?" The middle-aged radio announcer asked.

"Hello, and we're very happy to be here. I'm Bill. I'm lead singer," said Bill, in his heavily accented English.

"I'm Tom. Lead guitarist." 

Georg and Gustav had to lean forward to use one of the twins' mics, "Georg. Bass."

"Gustav. Drums." The bassist and drummer said respectively. They'd gotten used to being almost ignored in all interviews. The label encouraged it too they presumed.

"Thanks for coming. So, tell me what's been going on for Tokio Hotel lately." The radio announcer pressed quickly. He obviously had no interest in the young band, and probably hadn't even bothered to read a briefing about them.

Bill took the question; he was the natural spokesperson for the band. "So much has happened. We have been traveling and playing many great shows, here and in Europe, and tomorrow we're flying back to Berlin and we're starting another small tour of Europe, I think it's like ten shows or something--" The cheerfulness in his voice, although fake, was abundant.

"Great. And what about your success here in the States?"

"We played an amazing show here in New York the night before last. We can't believe we have so many fans here already--"

David had been staring at Tom, and Tom knew the usual shit he was supposed to spew. "--So many good looking fans here," he interrupted Bill. Cock-master extraordinaire.

"--Yes, for sure, and just like today, they make very nice signs and they know the lyrics and they always sing with us. Thank you so much for your support."

The interview was the usual drivel they always answered, and perhaps even more boring, rushed, and meaningless than usual. Bill had gotten used to saying the same similar phrases about concerts and fans in English so many times, interviews in English were no longer a problem. That's all they were ever asked anyway. 

Their exit from the station was just like their entrance; squeezed between fans by security, and back into the van. They were off to the photoshoot now.

"Are all American radio personalities such morons? The guy got on my nerves." Bill scoffed. He was sitting on the back bench with his brother. 

"Meh." Tom shrugged. The G's were engaged in a discussion of their own, and David wasn't paying any of them attention. 

Bill sighed and spent the rest of the drive looking out the window at the street and shops bustling with people. New York traffic was a nightmare, but Bill didn't care. The traffic didn't affect him, the people rushing around on their lunch break didn't affect him, not the angry cab drivers, and nor did the fact that they were late to the photoshoot. He didn't really care. Sometimes he loved living the life he did; he'd worked hard to achieve the success they had, and when he got on stage, it all seemed worthwhile. However, at times like these, where the people he spent all his time with didn't pay him or his feelings any attention, and all he could do was stare at his own miserable reflection in the glass of the car door... he wanted to cry, to fall apart, to scream at the top of his lungs. He could feel that Tom felt similar, perhaps not as emotionally charged, but an indifference of where they went and what they did had settled into him also. They were just on a giant life-sized ride, where they were the main attraction, and the people around them leered and pointed. Sit down, turn around, do a trick... good boy. There wasn't any choice involved, and there was no choice to get off.

"Georg, go get your hair straightened. Bill, go find another pair of pants, ask the wardrobe stylist," barked David when they arrived at the photoshoot. Immediately his Blackberry was back in his hand, as Bill was discarded.

Bill was glad to find out that the stylist approved of his current outfit, and she didn't make him change. When they got on set, David noticed the unchanged outfit, and publicly chastised Bill. "I thought I disapproved of those pants, Bill."

"What's-her-face likes them and so do I."

"Well, it's not really up to her is it? I get the final approval." Just then, the stylist Bill had talked to earlier approached Jost.

"Is there a problem?" she asked.

"Yeah, find Bill another pair of pants."

"I'm sorry but I actually don't have another pair."

"Why the hell not?!" David almost blew up at her.

"I wasn't told to. I have a few different tshirts and some cute little jackets he could try on though."

That was not the response David was looking for. The vein at his temple pulsated dangerously, and he tried to keep his composure as he requested that the stylist find Bill a pair of pants-- any pair, he didn't care, she could even pull them out of her ass as long as they didn't make his lead singer look like a fag. He didn't want Bill in cute little jackets and he didn't want him looking like the pansy he was. Oh, and look at the time, they were so behind schedule. They had a plane to catch later that night.

Bill interrupted the exchange between his manager and stylist. "Can I just wear these damn pants? It's not a big deal. And even so, I'm not changing."

David shot Bill a deathly look. He knew it wasn't a good idea, but considering the time, he gave up and said, "Fine."

The shoot proceeded as any other photoshoot would. Snap. Pose. Snap. Pose. Snap. Turn. Look pretty. Snap. The photographer seemed happy with the bands performance and didn't have many requests. 

Bill had won a picometer-sized battle against David, but it didn't make him any happier. If anything, it made him feel worse, and he was quite for the rest of the night.

---

One week later, David Jost and the band were on the road in the Tokio Hotel tour bus. They were two stops into the new tour and David was already panicking. He felt it, he knew something was different this time. Something had to go wrong, Tokio Hotel's press had been too good lately. His phone rang, and his nightmares were confirmed. Universal never called unless something big needed straightening out.

"David Jost speaking." He almost cringed at the voice on the other end.

"Dave. I'm holding the latest issue of AP, and I'm not liking what I see. Can you tell me why?"

And just like that, he had something new on his plate. He knew the problem well, but instead said, "Did they mess up their names again? I didn't see-"

"NO! My problem, and you better know that this is a problem, is that the fucking lead singer looks like a chick! I can't tell anymore!"

"Oh, that." David said meekly. Fuck.

"Look, I don't have time to discuss why that's a problem for you and for the band again, but I want a bad-ass rocker as the lead singer, rap-looking guitarist, and the other two. That's the image we're holding."

"Yates, I know man--"

The Universal representative cut him off. "David, you better change what that kid is looking like. We all know he's gay, or bi or whatever, but if their stupid fangirls know for sure they have zero chance of bedding him, Tokio's sales are going down. I don't know what else to say, but fix it."

"I'll talk--"

"Bye Dave." The line went dead. 

David sunk his head in his hands. His job was on the line, Tokio Hotel's success in a conservative American market was on the line, and millions of dollars were on the line; he knew it.

Damnit Bill.


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Chapter Text

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CHAPTER TWO:
THE NAILS

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For the last three shows, Bill's pants had been almost skin-tight. It bothered David to no end. He'd been wondering if he should actually have a talk with Bill about the way he dressed, or if he should continue trying to wean the kid away gradually from things he didn't like. He'd decided to postpone the talking-to because he didn't know how to explain don't look like a girl to a rockstar. These days, most of them had tight girl pants, floppy hair, and wore eyeliner, so he knew it would backfire on him to talk to Bill so early.

There was just something different about the way that Bill put himself together. It was too stylish, too Vogue to still be masculine. However, he even managed to look girly when he was in pajamas, au-naturel. Maybe it was in the mannerisms, but it wasn't so bad before this year. And if David tried explaining all that, he might have Tom on his ass also. After all, the twin liked his designer labels also, and if Bill looked girly even without makeup on, then Tom would say David was just trying to insult him.

Tom could always be counted upon to be dressed in the exact same outfit, only in different colors; as David and the other three band members put it. He was laid-back and composed most of the time, however, David knew there were some things that riled him up big-time. The main one was messing with his little brother. The other was messing with his image. This prescribed conversation would rattle both if he wasn't careful. He definitely did not want to incur the combined wrath of the Kaulitz twins.

Then he thought about the record label, and his job, and the phone call he'd got very recently, and he was stuck. What could he do to curb Bill's image from the dangerous direction it was headed in?

---

Tom was wide awake in the middle of the night. The bus was too hot, and he was restless. He'd been tossing and turning for hours, never finding a comfortable position in his little tourbus bunk bed, and he didn't think he could do it for much longer. He was getting antsy without sleep, so he just got up. Tom pulled one of his very large tshirts over his head, and got out of his cocoon of blankets. The tshirt fell almost to his knees, completely covering his boxers. Bill always teased him about his pretty dresses

Speaking of Bill, Tom was surprised to find Bill awake when he stepped into the kitchenette. Tom grabbed a glass of water and then sat down beside his brother.

Bill was sat cross-legged at the pull-out table, nail-file and nailpolish in front of him, as he carefully applied layers of polish to his long fingernails.

Tom found it strange that Bill was painting his nails bright red, instead of his usual black, but decided to ignore it. "So you couldn't sleep either," he said instead.

"Hmm."

They sat silently for several moments; Bill moving the small brush over his nails agonizingly slow, and Tom sipping his water.

Tom watched his brother. "Bill?"

"Yeah."

"What are you doing?"

"Painting my nails."

"Why that color?"

"Felt like a change."

"Oh. I like it." He didn't know why he'd said that. 

The brothers sat in silence for some time longer, until Bill had put the bottle of nailpolish aside and spread his fingers on the tabletop for inspection. His mind however, was miles away.

"Tom? Do you ever feel really tired of it all?"

"Um, what are you getting at?" Tom asked skeptically.

Bill waved his brightly colored fingers around and brew on them.

"Well, just, nothing new happens. It's all the same. I dunno."

"I guess."

"I just feel so... so blah. I don't know anymore Tomi. I want some say in my life. I wanna wear what I like and not be scrutinized to bits, and not have Dave telling me I look like a girl with that fucking snarl on his face. I, I just... never mind." The singer snapped out of the rant he'd started, and put on a smile Tom knew was fake. "I should go to bed, it's late. You should too."

Tom nodded, but didn't get up from his seat. " 'Night Bill."

He watched Bill walk down the narrow hall and climb into his bunk. 

Bill wasn't ok. Tom knew for sure now. He'd suspected that Bill had been unhappy lately, but the short midnight talk confirmed it, and brought on feelings he himself had been suppressing for some time. Sure he could have any girl he liked, attend wild parties, be on TV, win awards up the ass, travel the world, but it all felt so fake. The sudden urge to hold Bill and just cry was overwhelming. His brother was the only real person left in his life.

The guitarist sat awake till almost dawn thinking that there had to be a change, any kind, approaching their lives. Right now he didn't really care what form it came in, but he prayed for it to pull him and his brother out of the huge unhappy rut he realized they had fallen into. Yet the world outside the tourbus was dark and unremarkable as it zipped by the window Tom had fallen asleep against. 

"Just wait Tom, just wait," Bill told him in his dreams. 

He was dreaming of Bill, and those were the only words he remembered, apart from the fresh red fingernails.

---

You can bet that the next morning David had a big problem with Bill's red nails. Which he made the mistake of voicing in the presence of the elder and very groggy Kaulitz twin.

"David, seriously, it's fucking nail polish! What's it gonna do? Kill all life on Earth? You're pushing your powers too far this time. You can't order my brother around like that!" he seethed. "You're our manager, and I know our image as a band is under your jurisdiction, but you have to allow for our free will also. We can wear whatever we damn want. This isn't a shoot, we're going to have breakfast. ...Besides, I like it." He turned to Bill and gave him a small smile.

Bill looked a bit like a deer caught in the headlights at Tom's sudden outburst. It wasn't often that Tom lost his cool, but he couldn't deny he was grateful for it this time. David deserved that. 

The younger Kaulitz returned the smile and took a step closer to this twin. It felt like a small shelter to be closer to him, like protection, like acceptance. He was thankful that Tom had put his foot down and stood up for him, because he was feeling very drained this morning, and most likely would have resigned his position and just grumbled a lame "Ok, fine". Bill always felt a tug at his heart whenever he'd give in, because it felt like defeat, another blow, and he was getting weaker and weaker.

The general mood among the band members only returned to normal after generous amounts of coffee had been consumed, which was almost an hour later.

Then off to the recording studio they went. 

Studio time was stressful for the reason that it was on a schedule, timed, rushed, like everything else in their lives. But it was also calming, because Bill was free to express those emotions he bottled and released only through music.

Afterwards, the rest of that day was free to spend as the boys wished in their own hotel rooms.

Tomorrow night Tokio Hotel was to appear on a TV show, and the day after that the concert schedule resumed, but for now, all Bill had to worry about was what he wanted for dinner.

Bill was calmly looking through the room service menu, humming a new song they'd put together just earlier today. He was in the best mood he'd been in all week, and you could tell, because he felt good enough about himself to be wearing spandex leggings and a long thin tshirt, complete with his big jewelry from their day out. Bill was about to pick up the phone to order, when there was a knock on his door and he went to answer it.

"Hey Tomi. Have you eaten yet?" he asked with a smile.

Tom shook his head and made himself comfortable on his brother's bed. "I kinda feel like eating now though." He laid a few soft punches into a pillow to fluffen it up to his liking.

"Good. I was just about to order myself a chicken stir-fry. What do you want?"

"Same." Tom shrugged. He zoned out while Bill was on the phone and realized that his brother was wearing... were those black leggings? Which is exactly what he asked the minute Bill hung up.

"Yeah. They're comfortable." Bill affirmed as he looked down at his clothes. "I'll be honest, I've been getting a lot of stuff from the women's section these days." His cheeks pinked slightly at the admission. "I just feel nice in them. I dunno. They don't look bad do they?"

Tom laughed. "I sure wouldn't wear those, but they look good on you. You've always been able to pull off the crazy outfits." 

Bill gave a big goofy smile and came to lay down beside Tom on the bed. "Thanks," he murmured.

Tom looked at his twin and suddenly felt like he should say more about Bill's expressive style, how if Bill liked it, he liked it too, and he shouldn't let Jost put him down about it. He took his brother's hand and looked at the red nail polish and then at Bill's questioning face. He felt the need to protect Bill, just like back in middle school when Bill had started wearing eyeliner and some little jerks gave him shit about it. 

He'd always felt Bill's saucy style went with Bill's naturally outgoing personality, but lately he was getting a different vibe. A much more feminine flair was being infused into Bill's rocker wardrobe, and it came with a much more softspoken Bill, something which Tom felt made his brother seem more vulnerable. Perhaps that's what it really was. As he looked into Bill's eyes he thought he understood finally. This was a side of him that he felt shy about, but something that would really crush him if rejected. It was the reason Jost made him feel like shit, why he felt caged; whereas anything else would have washed over much more smoothly. But Tom knew his brother. Bill was determined, and sooner or later he would get his way. At least Tom hoped so, so that Bill would smile more. His brother's smile was like sunshine he thought, and it should come out more. 

A firm belief of Tom's had always been that you should dress however you damn well feel like because it was just stuff on the outside, what mattered was on the inside. Cheesy indeed, and rarely expressed with more than 'Fuck off, they're just clothes' but he'd never felt it to be more true than now. However, Tom didn't express emotions "and shit like that" and therefore after a long thought process just said, "You know Bill, tell Jost to fuck off next time. What's he gonna do?"

"I guess. I dunno." Bill collected his hand back from his brother and sighed.

Tom sat up on his elbow. "No, like really, we're the one's making him money, and it's not like we're super spoiled and reckless in our choices. If whatever you're wearing makes you feel good, then wear it and tell Jost to fuck himself."

Bill looked back at him but looked even more shy, like he was biting his tongue and not saying something.

"Really." Tom impressed again.

"Tomi," Bill said quietly. "I dunno if I can do that. People already call me gay and a girl and what-not. And I know I'm not helping myself, but I'm attracted to that style." His cheeks flushed red and his voice became quieter, but Tom hung on to every word. "I don't know how to say this..."

"What is it Bill?"

"Tomi,” he looked up with worried eyes.

"Come on Billa. You can always tell me. You're ok right?"

"Yeah, I'm fine. It's just, I tried on a skirt last week. Like, a mini-skirt." After he said it, it actually sounded really silly, but it killed that he'd really liked it. It killed that he couldn't buy it for the sake of buying it for fear of getting noticed doing the deed. It killed even more that Tom hadn't said anything since he'd admitted to trying on a skirt. He took hold of his brother's hand and looked into Tom's bewildered eyes. "Tomi, please don't freak out. Do you hate me? Was it too much to say?"

"No. No. I actually zoned out for a bit imagining that on you," he laughed and lay back down. Happily he sighed, glad it wasn't something serious.

It was Bill's turn to prop himself up on his elbow, his stance questioning, pleading. "What do you think?" he asked shyly. In his own mind, trying on that skirt was some sort of pivotal moment.

"I think you have the legs for it." Tom laughed.

"No, really. Tomi, tell me. Does that freak you out, me in a skirt?"

Tom thought about it some more. "Actually, no. I'm a bit interested to see what you look like. Like, you wear tons of crazy stuff that somehow you pull off, some of it really dumb, like that sparkly blue shirt I hate. It still looked good on you."

"Tom, this isn't a shirt, I wanted to buy a girl's mini-skirt and wear it." It was like Bill was determined to drill it through the thick pile of dreads atop Tom's head that this was drastic. "And you wanna see that?"

Tom felt a wave of mixed emotions. Of course it was strange, but that wasn't his cardinal reaction. Why did it seem so appealing to see Bill in a skirt? Was it for fun? Would he be ok with it if Bill wanted to wear it out? Was Bill really trying to tell him he wanted to dress like a woman? Or was this some fetish? Truthfully, he was a bit freaked out, but he remembered that he believed clothes were just clothes and that didn't change his twin from the person he'd known his whole life. The intrigue was undeniably there however.

"Yes. Don't make me feel weird about it," Tom said quietly. When the room service arrived a second later, he bolted off the bed to go get it, hoping the subject would change afterwards. 

It was all a bit much to try and think about in one night. He'd wait and go with the flow instead. At least it piqued his interest -not a lot did these days- and he was happy about that much.

---

Chapter Text

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CHAPTER THREE:
THE GRAPES

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The next week passed by without a single discussion about the lead singer's choice of wardrobe, even after several concerts and public appearances in the tight jeans David hated. Bill was starting to think that maybe their manager had just given up on the idea of trying to change him and had started taking a few risks with his clothes while on the bus with just Tom. 

Oh, the perks of having a tour bus all to yourself. 

In the last few days, Bill's leggings with long tshirts had turned into patterned stockings with short make-shift dresses and little belts. What encouraged him the most was that Tom had never spoken a word against each further push into the uncharted territories of crossdressing, because as far as Bill could see, that was where he was headed.

Tom was going with the flow. In the back of his head it scared him to think that yes, that was his baby brother in a cut-up extra-large tshirt with a belt that looked so much like a little dress. On the other hand, Bill didn't look bad in it, he thought, and that's what he stuck with. If it didn't look bad, then why tell him to change, especially when it made his brother so happy. 

They were spending a lot more time together on the bus after the shows and Tom had to admit that it had to do with Bill's clothing. Bill was smiling more. His face would light up when Tom would see him in another slightly more girly outfit and didn't disapprove. Bill felt free and empowered when Tom was by his side and they would laugh and goof around like always. Clothes didn't matter.

Tom was interested in what his brother would wear next. Last night, Bill had worn sheer black stockings with blacker vines running up the sides, and Tom couldn't stop following Bill around and staring at his legs. They just looked so... so tempting, so alluring. He had studied them in great detail as Bill fumbled through the kitchenette cabinets, looking for crackers.

When Bill had sat down on the couch next to him, he couldn't resist running his hand up his brother's leg. It was a bold move and he knew it, instantly blushing and saying, "Sorry. They're really soft though." 

Bill had taken his hand and ran it up his leg again, along with his own other. "I know," he said with a shy smile. Then he flipped his hair and handed Tom the game controller. Neither twin speculated that what just transpired may be dangerous territory.

While Tom was intrigued by Bill's changing wardrobe, Bill soon found that his twin was the only one. Gustav had seen Bill earlier that week wearing one of Tom's extra-large hoodies, shiny red leggings, and Converse sneakers when they stepped off their buses at a gas station, and had given his friend a questioning glance which Bill could tell was not approving. And as much as Bill hoped David Jost had given up tormenting him about his tight pants, or whatever else, and the man was going to accept it, that was not so.

Unfortunately, Bill's week of "acceptance" had come to an end. 

Backstage before the group's next concert, Bill had just finished applying his extensive makeup and was flat-ironing his hair when David stepped into his changeroom.

"Hey," Bill said as he looked away from the mirror.

"Bill, I need to talk to you."

That wasn't a good sign, no matter how calm and composed David looked when he said those words. It meant he was going to have some more garbage shoved down his throat, more shit Bill would be forced to abide by, more shit Bill usually hated. He really wished Tom was here with him.

The lead singer sighed and put down his hair straightener to go sit across from David on the armchair.

"What's up?" he asked, hoping to god that it wouldn't be something big, something too bad.

"Lucas and the sound guys at the studio finished mastering that song you guys recorded last week and sent me a copy."

"Awesome! What's it sound like?" Bill asked eagerly, forgetting that David must be displeased about something. He had been so happy to record that song, instantly one of his new favorites. It was about his latest feelings of being trapped in your own skin, and he actually had the audacity to smile.

The action turned David's nerves but he stayed calm. "Bill, I don't like it."

Bill's face dropped. "Oh."

"I can't very well let you guys put that on your next album. I know what you want to say, but this isn't like Spring Nicht, which Universal accepted because they saw you were all happy and bubbly and thought it would make Tokio Hotel look like good role-models. This makes you look really bad."

"What's so bad about it?" Bill frowned.

"Caged in a world I have to sell?" David iterated a lyric from the song in question. "It sounds like we're selling the public a false image."

"Well, that's kinda what I've been feeling like these days." Bill muttered and looked down to chip the last of the red nail polish off his fingernails. He was going to paint them black again in a minute.

"Well, that doesn't really matter. You can write it differently, where it doesn't look like that."

"Like what it is?"

That comment pinched another of David's nerves, but he continued calmly. "Whatever you're going through right now, I've tried to be as supportive as I can. There are some things I can't let you do. Telling the world you feel like a little caged songbird and wanting to be released might do just that: release you from your contract. Think carefully Bill. There are people above me that you're pissing off more than me. They're marketing you guys in North America now. Much of the United States are bible-thumping republicans who won't tolerate their daughters going to see some gay boy prancing about on stage singing how he wants to be free of this masquerade!"

David was taunting him, and it was making Bill's blood boil. Making fun of Bill's music was the first rule in making Bill hate you. He looked up with menacing eyes. Their manager did and said a lot of things Bill hated, but for the first time Bill actually hated him. 

"Don't look at me like that." David grinned cheekily.

Bill balled his hands into fists in anger. "That's how I fucking feel. You won't let me do anything. You criticize everything!"

"Well, I can't let you do just anything you wanted. You're in a business to make crap-loads of money for lots of people. This is a business and sometimes I don't think you understand that."

"This is my life!" Bill almost shouted, completely outraged at the man in front of him.

"Yes, and if you want the cushy life you have, with room service and parties and designer clothes, you have to sustain the business that supports you. I'm not going to explain that again, I thought you understood that. We've only been doing this since you guys were fourteen! Do you understand?" David asked the disgruntled singer in front of him, but didn't wait for an answer. "I can't release that song, and I can't let you run around looking like a girl. I'm going to warn you as a friend- it's not pretty what the media does to those that cross the invisible lines. Do you want to be ridiculed and harassed for being a fairy in every magazine until you drop out of the spotlight?"

"I don't look like a girl."

"Don't lie to me. You do, and you know you do, so stop pushing it. It's drawing too much attention and questions about your sexual orientation. Do I have to tell you again that this pansy band has a ninety-nine percent female audience?" Bill leered at him with hateful eyes. "These little girls aren't lesbians. They want a bad-ass rocker boyfriend to dream about, and that's what the label wants also: bad-boy rockstar, not flaming fag."

"I get it, ok?" Bill felt defeated. He wanted to curl up into a little ball and die. He thought about how Tom told him to tell Jost to fuck off, but he didn't have the strength to. He still had a concert to do. "Will you leave now? I have to finish getting ready."

David checked his watch and nodded. "Yes. I hope we understand each other then." He turned around to leave, and as he walked out the door he looked back and said, "Put on some normal pants."

Bill took the closest thing he could land his hands on, and threw a plastic water bottle at the now closed door. "Fucking asshole," he muttered to himself.

He managed to pull himself together again, in order to perform the show to his own high standards, and then smiled and signed autographs afterwards. The smile was plastered onto Bill's face and he remained contained until him and Tom finally sat down in the privacy of their tourbus again, at which time the smile evaporated instantly.

Tom spoke first. "I know you weren't happy today Bill. What happened? Did Jost piss you off again?"

"Yeah. Completely." The sad face turned angry for a moment and he yelled, "He's such a fucking bastard!" Bill's fists that dug into the couch released, and instead he curled up into a little ball and Tom put his arms around him.

"I know," Tom said gently, as he rubbed circles onto his brother's lower back. "Do you want to talk about it?"

"Not really. But he said he couldn't let us release Freedom onto the next album." Bill began to sob quietly. "He told me I look like a fag and I'm pissing off the label."

"Oh Billa, come here silly." Tom pulled his crying twin into his lap and held him. He could feel the pain seeping out of Bill's shaking body. His brother was not ok, not by far, and it was breaking Tom's heart. 

Since they were little, the guitarist knew the worst times in his life were when Bill cried, because it felt like the world was tearing in two. It wasn't right that anything should make Bill cry, when all Bill did was be good and nice to the people around him. At least that's what Tom thought, disregarding all the times Bill had been whiney and demanding of things like candy or more sleep, or when he snapped at their road crew, or when he forgot his Please and Thank-You's like any other normal person. His older brother couldn't recognise many imperfections in his twin; he mostly had the same ones himself. Tom knew he bent to most of Bill's whims because they were never big and it was so worth it to see that big smile on his twin's face. It didn't look as beautiful on him, as it did on Bill. Everything Bill did was better.

Tom wasn't affectionate very often, but as Bill cried away in is arms, he really felt there wasn't a better time to be tender and caring to anyone. He caressed his younger brother's back low where the small concert tshirt had ridden up and stroked his soft black hair, which he had worn down today. As Bill quieted down and just sniffed into the comforting shoulder Tom had provided him, Tom found himself gently kissing Bill's hair. He wasn't really thinking about what he was doing, just doing what felt right to comfort the most important person in his world. 

The way Tom was holding him made Bill feel so loved and accepted that he just wanted to admit everything to Tom, even if it still scared him. 

He had stolen something from the wardrobe department on the TV show they had been on last week, and had tried it on only two days ago. They had had such a fun night together, and after Tom had fallen asleep on the bus, he had snuck with it into the bathroom and succumb to his curiosity. Now all he wanted to know was what Tom thought, then his world might be complete.

"Tomi?" he asked suddenly.

"Yes Billa."

"Can I show you something?" Bill lifted his head and looked his twin in the eye. Tom wiped at his face where his makeup had run.

"Sure."

Bill visibly swallowed. "Ok. Give me like ten minutes?"

"No problem," Tom agreed as he lay down to rest his eyes.

Twelve minutes later Bill poked Tom back to consciousness and stood in front of him in a short semi-formal burgundy dress. His hair was the same, but he'd wiped off his soiled makeup and applied a much more natural look. 

Tom could tell Bill was nervous as he smoothed his hands down the many pleats that added volume to the dress which flared beautifully from the waist. His legs were dressed in those same pantyhose from last night which Tom liked, and Tom felt speechless (in a good way).

"Tomi. What do you think?" Bill asked nervously.

"Turn around."

Bill twirled on the spot, which made the dress flare out even more, and Tom noticed the low-cut back of it. The shy and unsure smile Bill had made him look adorable Tom thought.

"Um. Wow." Collecting his words right now was hard. He preferred to just look his brother over a few more times so the image of what he was really seeing could sink in properly. How was it possible for a boy to look so good in a dress?

"Is it bad? Was this a mistake?"

"No, not at all. I... I'm just a bit stunned. Give me a minute." Tom smiled.

That meant Tom was ok with it and it made Bill smile like a big dope. Yay. 

"Really? You think I look ok? Not too weird?"

"I'm not saying it's not weird, like, I'm definitely not used to this yet, but you look amazing in it." Bill absolutely beamed with happiness right then.

"Thank you," he said and twirled again. "Tomi, I'm so happy you're not mad at me. Everyone else would be."

"Fuck everyone else. You look good, and if dressing that way puts that smile on your face, that's what I want to see." The words Tom was actually feeling seemed to slip from his lips much easier than normal.

Bill laughed. "Dork."

"Look who's talking."

"Maybe."

After he'd just stared at his brother for a couple minutes, he realized it was more like checking his brother out. He laughed. "Bill, don't take this the wrong way, but you look really hot."

Bill blinked at him comically.

"Yeah." Tom's eyes ran up Bill's long legs again. "This is really bad, but I'm kinda attracted to you right now." Tom blushed and reached his hand out to pull Bill closer to where he was sitting.

Bill became very self conscious, his natural prowess and surety not yet present in his current ensemble. He wasn't certain of how he should react. The weight of what Tom said could mean a few different things. "Oh. Um, how attracted?"

The order twin felt drunk, like the world in front of him was glossing over and he wasn't thinking his words through before he said them. "Sorry. It's the way you look right now. Those tights are what it is I think. I feel like I wanna be closer to you." 

All the words did was make Bill feel more accepted and curious. He took a seat next to his brother on the couch and followed Tom's eyes. 

"Can I touch?" The brunette's current look captivated Tom's entire attention.

Bill laughed. "Yeah."

Tom ran his hand up his thigh gently and closed his eyes, letting his senses take over for a minute. When he opened his eyes, he bit at his lip ring nervously. "Sorry."

"No, what is it Tom? Is this bad? Am I making you feel funny?"

"Yeah. Like, you're turning me on." Tom hung is head and removed his hand from Bill's thigh. "I'm sorry." His mind told him he was behaving perversely, and should stop before he did something regrettable.

Bill immediately took his brother's hand back. "No, don't be. It's a feeling. Don't hide."

"How can I not? I can't believe I just said that."

"It feels good. It feels so good to hear you say you like me, no matter what. I dunno. I just hate hiding this part of me, and the fact that you're not disgusted by it or something means so much to me." Tom was giving him confidence in himself. It felt invigorating after the excessive length of time Bill had spent in a little cocoon lately, sheltered from real feelings. Bill ran Tom's hand higher up his thigh until it was almost inappropriate. 

Tom looked his twin in the eye questioningly. "Bill? Stop it. I'm serious. You're turning me on, and it's freaking me out more than seeing you dressed like a girl."

Bill just moved to straddle him and positioned Tom's hands on his back to hold him. He leaned into his brother and breathed in his comforting smell. He felt bad about making this awkward for Tom, but he just had never felt this way before. After sharing something really personal and having it be accepted by the one he cared about most made him feel amazing. And then Tom had told him something so taboo. Kinky? Hot even? He knew in the back of his mind that it wasn't right, but it was flattering. Someone real thought he was appealing, and sexually nonetheless. It just made him more anxious, so much it overwhelmed him.

Anyone else would have been repulsed to be in this situation, but it actually thrilled him, igniting a burning desire he never knew he was capable of. He tried to calm himself, but the longer he sat in his brother's lap, the more berserk his mind and body went. If only someone could bottle this feeling! It felt as if he were standing before a giant precipice.

The older twin couldn't see his sibling's face but it felt as if Bill was vibrating in his grasp. "Bill, what the hell?"

"I'm sorry. I can't. I just want too much right now." Without any more thinking, he kissed Tom passionately. Eagerly, and wetly, he just put more of himself into the kiss. Tom's lips felt so wonderful against his. He'd never meant a kiss more than this.

It all ended too quickly. Tom ended it asking, "Wait, what are you doing?"

"Please," Bill begged. His mind wasn't processing much more than the need to feel and be close to Tom right now. He pushed his body onto Tom, chests flush against each other and Bill wrapped his arms around the guitarist's lean shoulders. He pressed his face against Tom's neck, and breathed in.

Tom knew his erection was prominent right now, and Bill could feel it against his own. "Bill, really. Stop. Have you forgotten that this is wrong?"

"No. But I don't care right now." Bill responded and instead of backing down he began to kiss his twin's neck eagerly, his accelerated heartrate blatant.

The only fight Tom put into removing himself from the situation was with his words, because his body had failed him long ago. "Bill. Don't... Bill." He protested lazily and closed his eyes hoping to regain some control over his body. His baby brother was doing delicious things to his neck, sucking and kissing, and licking, and Tom's mind was only becoming more cloudy. "Shit."

Bill's hands started wandering down Tom's torso, and slid underneath his tshirt, burning his skin. All Tom could feel was arousal when Bill kissed his mouth again. He tried to push Bill away once more.

"Let me. Please," he pleaded, choked up and vulnerable.

"Shit Bill. Why? Why are you doing this? It... it's, you're not supposed to. You know that."

"I know. I'm sorry." Bill felt tears gathering at the corners of his eyes as he kissed his brother again. "I'm sorry."

"Don't be. Just don't do it." Just then, Bill rocked his hips into Tom's and dug his nails into his back.

"Shit!" Tom exclaimed and even though he knew he shouldn't, he bucked back to increase the friction between their groins. "You're making me so hard right now. Fuck. Ah! If you want this, promise you won't regret anything tomorrow," he said huskily, his mind suddenly changed by the pleasure coursing through his lower abdomen.

"I promise," Bill responded breathlessly, as Tom reached under the dress, under the tight underwear, and took Bill's hard dick into his hand, bringing it into the dim light. He looked down at what he was doing as he stroked Bill into ecstasy, still incredulous to the situation they were in. He looked up into his brother's eyes and wiped away a stray tear with his free hand, letting his fingers remain on his cheek and using the hand to pull Bill's face to his own.

They kissed fervidly, tongues meeting and caressing, lips joining so perfectly. Bill let out an exquisite moan. For the moment, any pain was forgotten, the only feeling were the sparks of fire emanating at his groin. He was getting so close. Tom was squeezing him so well, circling his hand over the head of his arousal. He moaned and hissed between kisses and rutted his ass over Tom's clothed erection in such a delicious way. 

Tom pulled his brother closer still. He'd never been this turned on in his life and when he thought about if Bill was feeling the same, he realized this must be Bill's first time being this intimate with someone. "Shit," he murmured as Bill's head slipped back, his breathing too hitched and labored to continue kissing. 

Tom breathed heavily as he regarded the creature writhing in his lap. He felt proud that he was the one making his brother feel that good, he deserved it. He deserved to feel good, and sexy and beautiful like he was. He leaned in to suck on his neck, saying into his ear how hot and sexy he was right then. The words made Bill come into Tom's stroking hand, his fingernails once again digging into Tom's back, as his orgasm washed over him. Mouth open, heart thumping in his throat, he whispered, "Tomi."

"Fuck," Tom gasped as he came too, pressing Bill's ass into his erection and grinding upwards, before he stilled in the climax of bliss. He watched his brother the whole time. It was all just incredibly hot, and intense. Too intense to take in all at once.

Slowly, as they panted together, foreheads leaning against each other, they came down from the high, and realization hit hard.

"Tomi..." Bill looked unsure and on the verge of tears again.

"Shit. Bill, it's ok." He took a moment to consider the feelings whirling through his heart and head. "Just, are you ok? Like really ok? I'm not talking so much about what we just did. I'm worried about you." Tom wiped his cummed-on hand on his tshirt and graced Bill's cheek on his way to holding his brother in a hug around his waist.

"That was the best I've felt in so long. And it was so bad, like, I didn't want to ask you to do that, it just felt right." He sighed and tore his eyes away from his twin's. "That didn't make much sense. Um, I just felt free with you, like we could do anything. It just kinda took over. Please don't hate me," Bill said with a small smile as he looked up through his thick eyelashes.

"Hey, I'm not gonna say I didn't like it. I did, I just really shouldn't. I think we're in the same boat on that one... I'm not gonna avoid you or anything, and I definitely don't hate you silly, so don't worry about that part. Just, I'm freaked out now." He sighed and tried to follow Bill's wandering gaze for a minute. "You're freaked out, aren't you?"

"Yeah." Bill's voice trailed off as he leaned into his brother.

They sat for several long minutes like that, lost in what had just happened; thinking, but at the same time not thinking. Just staring and breathing each other in, both feeling calmer than they knew they should be. 

Tom put a few more thoughts together in his head, and asked carefully, "So was that spontaneous, or do you usually want me... in that way?"

"Um, I think it was more spontaneous than anything. It just poured out of me." Bill lifted his head off his brother's shoulder to see his reaction. "You?"

"It's new for me." It was Tom's turn to duck his head, and if Bill wasn't mistaken, his cheeks had pinkened. "I never thought about acting on something like that. You, just, this past week, past months, lately, you're really... sexy." Tom blushed visibly now and averted his eyes to a new haphazard location. "I swear I wanted to touch your legs so bad yesterday, I just never thought I'd get here, you know? Like, it didn't really cross my mind we'd ever do something like this."

Bill felt a bit more self-aware now. "Fuck. Should we even be talking about this?" The younger twin wiggled around and looked down to cover up his now soft cock. He shifted himself backwards from Tom's closeness, patting down his rumpled dress.

Tom's need for Bill's approval and safety, his underlying need to reconfirm their congruity as twins was the next most predominant thought. "Not sure, but I feel like I need to just tell you everything. I don't know how good of an idea it would be to bottle this stuff up." He watched his companion's face prudently, "Like, we need to be ok, you know? We need to be good, Bill." 

A small grin broke over his twin's lips. "I'd kill myself if we suddenly weren't 'cause you're the last not fucked up thing in our lives." Bill wrapped his lanky arms around his brother as well, so that they were talking into each others' shoulders. 

It was reassuring that neither wanted to run away from what was happening between them. Tom knew that without Bill he was pretty damn useless. "Billa," he kissed his brother's neck softly, "Sleep with me tonight? Like, just so we're together. Today sucked."

Bill nodded and pulled his kin up by the hand leading him into their bunk area. He turned his back to Tom and lifted his hair, Tom automatically knew to pop the button at the base of Bill's neck and Bill quickly discarded the dress after. Tom's tshirt was thrown into the crumpled pile as well and they crawled into Tom's bunk. 

The younger twin took the older's hand into his and massaged it between his fingers, thinking. Silence surrounded them (except for the road zipping by outside), and Bill collected his thoughts together. Part of him was tired and wanted to drop the subject, just curl up and go to bed. And the other part of him was hyper and thinking about how they could proceed, what would happen next, if this was the breath of fresh air they both needed or if this was the dumbest decision ever and it would all turn into a huge cluster-fuck. God, he prayed it wasn't a bad idea, that no-one would ever find out, about him and Tom at least.

Just as Tom was dozing off, Bill asked one last question. "Would you ever want to do that again maybe?"

"I would. I just don't think we should."


---

Chapter Text

---

CHAPTER FOUR:
THE WRATH

---


It had taken Bill some time last night before his mind stopped going haywire and let him fall sleep.
This morning he woke up when he heard Tom flush the toilet in their tourbus. He open his eyes groggily and saw Tom picking up his cellphone, having received a new text message.

Tom looked up after reading it, saw his brother was awake, and gave him a big smile. "Good morning," he said and went to sit back on the bed beside Bill.

"Morning," said Bill with a big goofy grin as he wiggled round to lay his head in Tom's lap. "What's up?" he asked and Tom knew he was referring to the text message.

"Jost. He says we're in Lisbon today, and that we have to give a video message to some local TV station before we go to the studio. And then the show tonight. I bet he'll cram in another interview or something too, you know how he is." He laced his fingers though his brother's silky hair absently.

"Dick." Bill frowned, remembering the talk he'd had with David yesterday.

"Ha. You should do that message bit wearing that dress, it'd blow his socks off. I just wanna see his face," Tom said, laughing. "It'd just get him back so bad. For being an ass to you."

Part of Bill wanted to be vindictive and pull a stunt like that too, but he knew it would be a turn off to most fans as much as it would be to David, and that wasn't worth it. He sighed. "You know I can't."

"I know, I know, I'm just musing," Tom replied as he continually petted Bill's hair. Yesterday seemed so long ago now, like it was normal already, and wasn't too soon to make light of.

"I promise I'm not going to wear any skirts or dresses in public. I'm not dumb. I've decided I only want to wear them with you," he smiled up to his brother. They locked eyes and Bill continued. "You're the only one that makes me feel beautiful in them. It's not the same as tight pants or some weird jacket or whatever Jost doesn't like, some outfit that he doesn't think I can pull off image-wise," the teenager huffed. "Skirts are like, supposed to be different, I don't see them the same. They're for me, and you I guess, only. It's different territory and I'm glad I can share that with you." The hand in his hair stopped strumming and grasped his shoulder instead.

"We share everything, Bill. I hope we always will." Tom's cheeks tinted slightly, "Obviously, even last night. Can you give me some more warning before ambushing me like that?"

"I said sorry. If I feel like that again, I'll let you know." He smirked and pushed Tom down on the bed so he could cozy up beside him again. "And you'll be ok with a next time?"

Tom remembered the way Bill just radiated sexuality and he didn't think he could resist if that was ever directed at him again. He had his first taste of it and he was hooked; he wouldn't deny it either. "Bill, a next time would kinda change things between us," he explained slowly. "Right now, I could go back to how things are between us, but I think if I got used to seeing you like that, I wouldn't be able to go back. I'd be addicted to it." He looked Bill in the eyes. They were so close, sharing the same pillow, limbs linking their bodies together. He felt his brother take in a breath of air and hold it for a second as his eyes searched his own.

"You think we'll always be together no matter what though, right?"

"Yeah. Always. Just, this would be new. You have to think about what you're doing. Not only 'cause we're famous, but... last night was incredibly hot. I don't want you to regret anything, I don't want to hurt you," Tom rambled out his concerns. "It's illegal. No one else would understand."

Bill's eyes flickered, and he leaned in to close the little remaining distance between himself and his twin, leaving a sweet kiss to linger on Tom's lips. He thought that Tom was the only one who understood him anyways.

Tom laughed. "And you really gave that a lot of thought didn't you?"

"No one else needs to understand, as long as we understand each other," Bill said sincerely. From his point of view right now, he thought they had found the perfect way to be closer to each other. The singer didn't think much about other consequences, it wasn't in his nature. Bill's psyche understood that this exciting path was a big chance to take, but he was going with it because Tom would be at his side, and that's all he needed.

"Ok. So where is this coming from for you?" Tom asked, with the intention of understanding. "You said it was spontaneous."

"I know. It is. Like you said, this is new, and it feels like a breath of fresh air to me. You feel like what I've been missing." He smiled shyly, knowing it was the biggest contradiction- Tom had always been there.

Tom wondered if this was the change they needed to rip their lives out of the perpetual rut they were in. 

"I need to think. Don't be upset, I just think we need to use our brains 'cause there's a lot on the line. And right now we need to get up and get ready for all the shit Jost has today."

Before Bill got up though, he rolled onto Tom to straddle him, connecting their lips once more. He lapped at Tom's lips with his tongue on every pass until he was granted entrance, and then moaned flagrantly when his tongue met Tom's. Initially he'd wanted to make it short, but the emotions quickly took over and he found it really hard to pull himself away from his brother's mouth. When his hands had started traveling south on Tom's body, the motion was stopped and their kiss ended. Tom looked flushed beneath him, and Bill smirked. 

"So yeah, think about that," he said.

---

Bill felt more courageous and empowered than he'd been in a long time. He smiled genuinely throughout the video shout-out they recorded for the TV station, and through all the other comments and directions David gave him that day. He felt good, and Tom couldn't stop watching him. That smile was infectious.

At the studio they had rented for a few hours, Tokio Hotel sat with a few sound engineers in the control room. They went through playback and different arrangements for pieces they'd already recorded, and Bill felt inspired. He'd bounded off to the recording room and lay down a new bridge he'd just come up with for a half-finished song they were working on. Afterwhich they played it over and over, and Tom and the G's came up with the background. It was all recorded in minutes and the song in question came together nicely. When their time was up, Lucas told the group he'd get back to them after the mastering and levels were finished so they could go over it again.

Georg and Gustav left the room first, along with two of the techs, leaving only Lucas, Bill, and Tom. 

"Hey Bill, before you leave, I wanted to say I'm sorry Jost axed Freedom for you guys. I had liked the way it turned out. Killer vocals on your part."

"Thanks. Wish I could hear that."

"You never got to hear the finished deal you mean?" the tech inquired.

"Not yet, nope," answered the singer. Suddenly Bill got an idea. "It's too bad it won't be released," he pouted, "I was really fond of it too. It's such an upbeat song, I'd love to just play it on my laptop and sing along, you know?"

Lucas laughed. "No actually, 'cause if I did that, my daughter would never stop taunting me for it. And then she'd want her own copy, and then that's how Cody accidentally released Dark Side early," he said jovially. The words were like a shining beacon to Bill, who couldn't wait to tell Tom what he was thinking. 

"...His daughter heard it from him and convinced him to give her a copy and then even though he made her promise to keep it to herself," he laughed, "teenage girls don't work that way, and it ended up on YouTube and that was that. He's still sorry for it all. I think we all learned our lessons."

Bill couldn't contain his smile. "Well, you know it's for me. I recorded it and I just want to sing along, and annoy Tom with it," he said and winked at Tom. "And he loves the guitar on it. Send me a copy of it, will you Lucas?"

"Freedom? Yeah, of course. Here, I'll do it now."

The middle-aged sound engineer opened up his laptop and sent an .mp3 file to Bill's email in minutes.

After Bill had thanked Lucas and dragged Tom out of the room, he pulled him into the nearest bathroom. Tom knew something was up, and he was right, because as soon as the door closed behind them, Bill blurted out his brilliant idea.

"Wait, what?! You want to leak Freedom?" he asked disbelievingly, in a much more hushed voiced than Bill, who was too excited to keep his voice down.

"Yeah. It's so easy. It would piss Jost off so bad!" Bill grinned.

Tom pulled his brother further into the bathroom. "Quieter, dumbass."

"What do you think?" The brunette looked so incredibly eager as he bounced up and down on his toes, and wrung his hands together.

Tom turned it over in his mind and frowned. "I'm thinking."

"I think Tom thinks too much these days," he laughed. 

Bill was on too much of a high to accept anything but a positive answer. Tom last night, seeing Jost pissed at his hot outfit this morning, the awesome studio time just now, this great idea; it was making his ego soar. 

The young singer pushed his [slightly] older brother into a bathroom stall, pinning him to the wall and attacking his lips. His hands wound themselves into the guitarist's blond dreadlocks pulling him even closer. Tom was definitely responding positively to this. He ran his hands over Bill's lower back, and then gripped his ass pulling his groin forward so they could grind together. Bill moaned into the heated kiss. "I can't believe you make me feel like this," he breathed as Tom captured his lips again and dove his tongue into his mouth, searching for the silver stud that drove him crazy.

"Let's release Freedom." Bill looked into the identical eyes before him, as they rested their foreheads together. His hands still roaming Tom's body in excitement. There weren't any more uncertainties in Bill's mind. The decision was instant: his thing with Tom, this was the way to go, he was positive. "This is what the song is about!" he argued sprightly, "That feeling that we can't do anything about the constant pressure and scrutinization by everyone, all the same stuff we deal with, all the fake smiles, when we feel like shit. What we're doing now, right now, I feel like we're breaking free."

That's the exact feeling, Tom thought. Breaking free, that's what they're doing. They're fighting back. 

Tom closed his eyes and pulled Bill into another crushing kiss. "Yes. Yes."

---

It was a rash decision to leak the song onto the internet, but they did it. That night, after the concert, when the bus drove off into the night, the Kaulitz twins sat around Bill's laptop. They sent the file Lucas had sent Bill to three Tokio Hotel fanclubs under an alias. 

This was vengeance. 

When the twins worked together, they always got what they wanted. Together they were strong, and they knew this. Nobody could touch them. Dare to.

They celebrated that night with more kissing, and rubbing, until they trembled down from their high, and fell asleep together with huge sated smiles.

It took almost a week for the news of the leaked song to get back to David Jost. It was just after the last concert of the mini-tour they were on, and David called the four boys together to make them aware of the issue.

The twins feigned innocence at the brief meeting, and later when they had privacy, they gathered around Bill's laptop once more. In order to make sure all the fans would know the song was out there, Tom updated his blog blaming a possible unnamed employee for the leak, supposedly angry it was leaked.

This too got back to David, much quicker however, as he was breathing down Tom's neck the next morning. 

"I'm sorry Dave, I wasn't thinking when I posted that," Tom lied smoothly.

"Well, all you've done is practically tell every little girl out there to look for that blasted song!"

"Sorry, jeez. I said that already, what do you want me to do about it?"

David thought for a moment. To remove the post would draw more attention, but to leave it there would be leaving it there: an advertisement. As it was still only the morning after the post, he hoped not many people had got proof of the post, and he voted on removing it. "Remove it from the blog. Replace it with some shit about cool shoelaces or something!" he barked savagely.

Wrong. One of the online fanclubs had already reported the leaked song to be acknowledged by the band and posted a screen-capture of the now missing post. The news of the removal only spurred the rest of the fans and then the song was everywhere within days: fanfiction references, on online radio, YouTube, forums, other blog posts. It could have been an official song for all the buzz about it and why it was rejected from the upcoming album.

The gutsy new Tokio Hotel song had captured a huge audience, and David was fuming about it. Don't even mention it to him unless you want to walk away with missing limbs. He was loosing control of the twins and he knew it. Even worse was that he knew they were happy about all of this. David could just feel Bill's smugness when he showed up with more and more of what David believed to be outrageous outfits. Bill's dress code had dissolved, and he looked as girly as he wanted (apart from wearing a skirt, as he'd promised) and David couldn't do a thing about it because the truth of the matter was that it was attracting attention to the band, a lot of attention.

The mixture of a hectic schedule, unruly twins, and a pissed-off manager finally took a toll on Georg and Gustav also, who approached the twins with their new concerns.

"Bill, you know we love you, but you're projecting a different image these days and I'm beginning to question if this band still has the same goals as before." Gustav voiced.

Georg nodded, "Like, we're not trying to take Jost's side, but we're all in this together and I think we should talk about this kind of thing. Whether you realize it or not, changing your image affects us too."

Bill looked to his left to make sure Tom was beside him, before he responded. "I know, I'm sorry. I'll be honest, I haven't been thinking about much lately other than the crazy schedule David has us doing, he's being horrible to me lately, and like, in a way it's my way of fighting back to all the shit. He's being too controlling, and I just want a say in my life."

As he knew, Tom would be there to back him up, and he did, saying, "I think that's something we can agree upon, right? That we want more say in what they're bossing us around to do."

That line hit a nerve with the other two band members.

"Yeah, I guess." Georg seemed to be backing down already.

Gustav on the other hand still wanted a debate. "Yeah, we want more control, but we have to talk about these things, everything, together. We're a band, and like, I hate being taken for a ride as much as anyone. I'm trying to say that Bill's new look is not something we've talked about and it may change our fan base or whatever. You never know." He looked at the twins' guilty faces. "Also, even though we approve, we know it was you guys that leaked Freedom, which is kind of a big deal and you really, really should have told us."

Bill sighed. He knew the drummer was right. He'd been so caught up in his own feelings, he'd totally forgot to think about the other members. Tom was about to say something but Bill cut him off. "You're right. My head's been messed up lately. I've been too busy wanting to finally dress the way I want, and say whatever I want, without Dave bitching at me for it, monopolizing idiot," his voice trailed off as he looked at the drummer and bassist ahead. "I should have talked to you guys sooner. The song, I can't undo that, but we won't do it again. Ok?" He looked at Tom for reassurance before proceeding. "And as to the other thing, I... I've been dressing more feminine, and I know that," he hung his head and admitted, "But that's the way I feel comfortable looking."

Gustav and Georg exchanged uncertain looks.

"So what exactly are you saying Bill?"

"I'm not saying anything except that I know I've been dressing... girly. I'd never wear a dress or something in public, so don't worry about that, but yeah," Bill tried explaining. "That's ok, right?"

Georg spoke first. "Yeah, it's ok with me," he shrugged. Bill was girly already and the fans liked him anyway.

"If it's fine with Georg, it's fine with me too I guess," Gustav said, however more unsure. He too looked behind him for allegiance, as if the G's and the Twin's were two teams of two consorts in dispute with the opponent. Though, it seemed they were all in accordance now. In the end, the G's weren't really mad about the leaked song since it turned out to be a favorable occurrence, only the fact that they'd been excluded from the verdict process. "I think we've all been high-strung lately, so I'll definitely agree with Tom: Dave's been too demanding lately. I say we put our foot down and take a week off or something, to chillax and re-group. Cause I dunno about you guys, but I care about us more than Dave. We're in control, not him."

Tom nodded, "Well-said Gus."

"My number one peeve right now is the way he's scheduling random recording days in rented studios while we're on tour. Like, I work a lot better when we do everything at once in our own studio back home."

"Fucking hate that," Bill agreed. "Let's tell him we need a break. Let's take a week to ourselves cause we need it I think, and then let's finish off the new album at home without other shit going on. Release the damn thing, and then continue with shows and what-not."

"I'm down with that," Gustav nodded.

And so it was agreed. 

It pissed David off to no end that he had to postpone or cancel a million appointments but he too knew when to back down. And you back down when you have four out of four disgruntled band members after your ass. So before they knew it, Tom and Bill were on their parent's doorstep knocking on the door.

Simone answered the door and for a moment stopped dead in her tracks, before leaning forward to trap both her sons in a hug. Their mother was a fair (in more ways than one), lean woman, with naturally red hair which looked like it needed conditioning. While she was not incredibly close with her sons, she cherished the moments when they chose to come to her, for it was impossible to do it the other way around. They were in too many places around the world to track down, and were far too individual to approach even if they lived next door.

"Goodness, I didn't expect you for another few days," she exclaimed when she'd let go of them and they dropped off their baggage in the foyer of the modest house. "Gordon's still at work. Won't be home for a few hours."

"That's fine, mum," said Bill, peering into the living room. The house was a little neater than when they all lived in it, but other than that, not much had changed. He did notice a new painting on the wall however, one if his mother's no doubt.

Tom nodded along. Despite having grown up in this house, he felt like he was standing in a stranger's house right now. If Bill wasn't here with him, he probably would never have come. It felt cold, and for some reason he was really immersed in his own thoughts at the moment. He couldn't wait to just sit back and clear his head, there was too much floating around up there.

"Tom, are you alright dear?" his mother asked him.

He nodded again. "Fine, just tired and a bit out of it. Is it ok if I just go up and lay down?" he smiled weakly.

Bill gave him a concerned look but thankfully didn't follow him up the stairs. 

When he reached the landing on the second floor, he felt as if the walls around him had closed in a few inches. Tom swallowed audibly and opened the door to his bedroom. It still looked like a ten-year-old lived there, with small exceptions which were dropped off randomly when they visited their parents. So rarely, so rarely did they visit their parents though. When Gordon would get home, he would no doubt comment on how long Bill's hair had got and greet Tom by saying "I see you're still ready to go camping,"-- his friendly jab at Tom's tent-like clothing.

Tom dropped his luggage by the foot of the bed and instead of laying down like he'd intended, he was distracted by the dust covering his old bookcase. He dragged a finger through it, and it left a visible line. He drew another line in the dust and sighed deeply, resigned.

This didn't feel like home. 


---

Chapter Text

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CHAPTER FIVE:
THE BROTHER

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When Tom woke up it was just after midnight. He looked at the bedside clock dopily and realized he must have fallen asleep and missed dinner. Energy to get the fuck up however was not something he planned on exerting yet, so he settled on staring at the ceiling. It seemed a new spot of water damage had formed on the drywall since he had last visited this old house, and he wondered if Simone knew she had a leak in the master bathroom upstairs.

Why was he even here? This house and lifestyle felt more foreign every time the twins returned to see their parents. It was too... how do you say... suburban? Mediocre? He should be at home, his home, the one he and Bill shared; with all their tour mementos and all Bill's fancy clothes scattered everywhere. Tom smiled at the thought. That was home, and while it was just a moderate flat in downtown Berlin, there was nothing he wanted to do more than hold Bill and watch the sun set over the Berlin skyline. 

Oh Bill... he sighed. What had they gotten themselves into lately? Tom had planned on being responsible and thinking before proceeding with their impromptu relationship, but it had swept him off his feet and here he was. Moreover, it wasn't like he could say No to Bill. His heart fluttered and he became a lovestruck fool whenever Bill smiled or pouted that cute little face at him these days. Tom was spellbound. And actually, it was the best feeling in the world.

Maybe this thing was good. This thing, this relationship, was a good thing, right? 

This was totally what he'd been waiting for. Something to light up his world, to get that spark back, that enthusiasm that made being a rockstar fun again. 

He realized that all the best moments included Bill. He wasn't talking about winning awards or playing guitar in front of thousands of fans; he was talking about the small moments. The times when they had three stupid interviews, a photoshoot, and god-knows what else racked on top of each other with no room to breathe, and then Bill would hand him a pack of jellybeans. Or maybe they'd sit down in their dressing room for five minutes and Bill would make some retarded comment about unicorns. While not remotely intelligent, "I wonder if unicorns piss rainbow colors" was guaranteed to make everyone in the room start laughing, including Tom. If he couldn't have simple moments like those in the midst of chaos he would suffocate. 

Even though he and Bill had spent 99.9% of their lives together, Bill was like fresh air, he really was, thought Tom. That's how the dreadhead knew that what they were doing was right. He was only getting closer to paradise. Every kiss and rub and touch brought he two boys closer, and Tom finally knew that this was where he belonged. Their naughty relationship was only for them. 

He smiled to himself and continued to muse happily about how lovely his brother was. 

Just as Tom was considering taking a walk to the corner store to buy a pack of cigarettes, there was a light knock on his door and then Bill stepped in.

"Hey. I thought you'd still be asleep," remarked the skinny brunette when he saw that his brother was in fact wide awake with his arms crossed behind his head. "Mom and Gordon are about to go to bed. Wanna come down and have a snack with me?"

Seeing Bill brought butterflies to Tom's stomach, confirming yet again how in love he was. Now he knew it too and didn't plan on stopping, ever. "Yeah, I'm coming. Lemme just get my lazy ass out of bed." 

Before Tom could swing his legs over to reach the floor, Bill had sat down at his side and taken hold of his left hand. "You're ok, right?" he asked.

"Yeah, I'm ok. I just felt blah when we got here."

Bill had a concerned look on his face. "But you're better now?"

"Now that you're here." Tom beamed and squeezed his twin's hand fondly. 

Never in a million years did he think that starting an incestuous relationship with his brother was the answer to all life's problems. What a paradox, he thought in amusement. 

The ecstasy in Tom's bosom bloomed once more as he admired Bill's delicate face. He leaned forward to capture Bill's lips in a gentle kiss. "Thank you," he said with a broad smile.

Bill tittered adorably. "Why, Tomi?"

"Because, umm...," he struggled to explain what he was feeling, "Because you're with me. And you're a goof, and you started this, us."

"Aww," Bill gleamed. "No, you started it."

"No, you did." Tom retorted and poked Bill in the arm childishly.

"You did. You got a boner cause I'm sooooo pretty." The slim singer poked back.

"Well, whatever. I love you."

Bill hesitated mid-poke, like the sentiment was a surprise to him. "I love you too, Tom," he replied in earnest, then looked down at their joined hands.

Tom lifted his chin and presented him with a chaste kiss. "I do. You're amazing to me, and at like, everything." He kissed Bill again, and again, and then dove his tongue into his twin's willing mouth. The guitarist moaned when Bill caressed his tongue stud deep over his own tongue, and invaded further. He palmed at Bill's sides and began exploring under Bill's little tshirt, fingering his pert nipples.

Talking wasn't Tom's forte, but showing affection physically he was great at. They'd been going to second base regularly these days and Tom delighted in touching his brother in any and every possible way. They'd even stroked eachother to climax a handful of times and Tom couldn't get enough. He pulled is little brother down over him and continued his attack on Bill's mouth. Zealous strokes of Tom's tongue had Bill moaning and rubbing himself onto Tom's tented trousers. 

"Ah, Tomi," he panted when Tom ducked his head and suctioned his Carotid hard enough to leave him breathless, and maybe even with a hickie. Bill arched in his brother's grip, offering more of his neck for Tom to lick and nip at pleasurably. Tom rutted up against Bill's equally firm arousal.

Strangely, it was Bill who stopped their heated activities. His head perked up suddenly and he whispered, "I think I heard... Never mind."

"Mom?"

"Maybe. We should stop; Mom and Gordon are just downstairs. Let's go say goodnight."

Grudgingly, the twins went downstairs only to find the livingroom and kitchen both empty. Their parents had gone to bed already. 

Bill expressed fear that the adults had heard what they had been doing upstairs, but Tom consoled him easily and went on to have a peach from the fridge. 

They spent several hours chatting, in which Tom disclosed his reluctance to stay with their parents as long as they had initially promised. Bill was sad, but had agreed on the condition that they come visit their parents again as soon as possible.

---

Back in the comfort of their own home, the twins were free to be as obscene and loving as they wished. It truly was their little slice of heaven (at least, for the next five days).

While it was nothing new for them to sleep in underwear, Bill had taken to wearing lacy boy-cut panties; something which made Tom's morning wood so hard it hurt, and he seemed to defy all logic for not having died of dehydration from excessive salivation at the mere thought. Bill had also unashamedly been wearing little mini-skirts and fishnet tights around the house in order to taunt the elder twin even more. 

High heeled pumps and other womens-wear had become commonplace. Where Bill got all this new clothing was a mystery, but Tom was the last person to complain.

They spent a majority of their time writing music together, cuddled up in front of the TV, or in bed *ahem*; but no matter where they were, they kissed and touched constantly. Such is proven by the fact that they couldn't even keep their hands off each other long enough to finish playing the first level of a videogame.

The game controllers sat idle, and the flatscreen TV on the wall read Zero Health Points, Sorry You Died, but the only thing Tom gave a shit about right now was licking Bill's nipples so that he could keep making those incredibly sexy mewing noises.

"Tomi, Tomi." Bill yelped huskily, as Tom starting massaging his member for the second time before noon. "Shit."

The dreadlocked boy released his brother's nipple, but only to move his mouth up to the other boy's lips and start kissing those instead. Bill's tongue stud had become very familiar in Tom's mouth and he loved it. The soft inside of Bill's mouth and the feel of Bill growing beneath his hand had his heart accelerating.

Tom's tongue grazed his brother's hungrily as he pulled him closer into his embrace. Steadily he palmed Bill's growing erection until it became prominent enough to no longer fit in the skimpy underwear he was wearing, and then he resolutely wrapped his hand around it. Bill audibly whimpered when the sensitive head of his cock was touched.

Tom repeated swiping his hand up the shaft and around the head of Bill's rigid cock, making him shiver and squirm in delight. 

Swept away in the sensations that were building low in his abdomen, Bill didn't even notice when Tom had pushed him down on the floor of their livingroom and ducked to capture his erection into his mouth.

Bill had been on the receiving end of a lot of handjobs this week, but this was Tom's first blowjob and it was certainly unexpected on Bill's part. "Oh shit Tom," he sighed as his arousal disappeared into the velvety confines of his twin's mouth. "Shit. I can't believe you're doing that."

Tom raised an eyebrow at him playfully. One could tell he was relishing in Bill's affected response.

After a few messy licks, Tom adjusted into the practice of sliding his lips downwards and then swirling back up to the tip, where he flattened his tongue over the glans before repeating. 

Tom was by no means an expert on giving head, but he knew what he liked done to himself and tried to mimic that as best he could. He hollowed his cheeks and sucked before releasing the pressure and letting his lips glide down the shaft as far as he could. 

The delightful symphony Bill made as he tensed and coiled beneath Tom let the elder know he was doing pretty well. Curiosity got the best of him and Tom looked up to see Bill trying to prop himself on this elbows. Bill could hardly keep his eyes open and his arms were failing him, as all his muscles seemed to be preoccupied with his impending orgasm. Tom smirked, all the while slurping his way up the cock in this hand. 

This wasn't as bad as he thought it would be. The taste was more than tolerable and in fact it was quite arousing to have his little brother so at his mercy. He looked up again to see Bill tweaking his own nipple with one hand, and trying to grasp handfuls of the carpet beneath him with the other. Damn, that was really fucking sexy. 

"Yeah... uh, yeah, Tom! Fuck." Bill was getting close, Tom could tell by now. His labored breathing and increasingly illiterate language was a dead giveaway. 

"Common Bill. I wanna see what you taste like," Tom urged confidently as he moved one hand to cup his balls and then pointed his tongue into the slit. With one last impressive moan, Bill's body strained and he spilled into Tom's mouth. While still somewhat surprised to be receiving a mouthful of come, he licked and sucked Bill until there was no more to swallow.

When Tom came up from between Bill's legs, he had a big cheesy grin on his face. "So, how was it?" he asked as he crawled back up his brother's body.

"Intense." 

Bill looked completely blissed out. He opened his eyes and pulled Tom up so they could share a heated kiss. His mind ran wild with thoughts like Holy shit, first blowjob and Wow, that was good. He would definitely do this for Tom sometime. But before he could reach down and grab at Tom's erection, Tom had lifted himself off.

"I wanna take you to bed," he said, his voice rasping as he removed the lacy panties from around Bill's thighs. Then he moved on to unclasp the miniskirt that had pooled at Bill's midsection and shimmy him out of it. 

Bill hadn't bothered to put on any further clothing that morning, so now he lay completely naked on their livingroom floor. He rose off the ground and gave his brother a soft kiss. "Yeah... Yes," he murmured in between their lips, then without further ado grabbed Tom's hand and led them down the hall.

On the way back to the bedroom, Tom shucked his tshirt and wiggled out of his boxers, so that as soon as they got to the bedframe, he bent Bill over it and pressed his cock between the buttcheeks presented to him.

In awe of the rougher treatment and how it turned him on, Bill arched and stuck his ass out more for Tom.

The guitarist had taken a handful of Bill's hair in his hand and pulled sufficiently hard to make Bill moan, but not enough to hurt him. He started placing kisses along his lover's shoulder blades and whispered his name.

"Tom," Bill whispered back.

"Yeah?"

"Can we...," he started and lost his voice when Tom bit his neck. "Ah!"

"Can we what, Billi?" Tom smirked. He hoped he knew what Bill was trying to say. At least, he really hoped Bill was going to ask for it. Pre-cum had lubricated his path up Bill's ass and the sensations were making him greedy for more.

A flush rose up Bill's face and neck. He wanted to ask Tom to fuck him but was at a loss for how to voice such a lewd question. He reached a hand down to stroke his own erection as Tom dug his fingers into his hips and asked again, "Can we what?"

Bill whimpered. He really wanted to say it. He really wanted to be with Tom like that. However, the other half of his conscience told him there was a big red line and this would be crossing it. Think Bill, think. He shut his eyes and ground his ass backwards into Tom. The images of Tom hovering above him, rutting into him, his face twisted in pleasure, flashed behind his eyelids.

Suddenly the request wasn't that hard to make. He swallowed back the lump in his throat. 

"Yes. I want it Tomi." 

And Tom knew exactly what he was talking about. "Say it, Bill."

"Make love to me."

Fire shone in Tom's eyes and he whipped Bill around fiercely, gathering him into his arms. Manhandling his lover, crushing their lips together, he clumsily brushed hair away from Bill's face at the same time. 

Bill felt like goo melting in Tom's strong hold. He was positive that if Tom let go of him right now, his knees would give out and he would crumple to the floor. Tom wouldn't allow that though, for he pushed Bill backwards onto the bedspread and spread his twin's legs. He moved back a touch so he could reach behind Bill's balls and see Bill's face simultaneously.

Starting slow, he drifted his hands over the creamy skin of Bill's thighs. The brunette had shut his eyes and was rolling one of his nipples between his thumb and forefinger again. Tom glided one hand upwards towards his ribcage and then back down to press against the star tattoo on Bill's hip. Leaning in a bit more, he feathered a number of kisses to Bill's midriff. The scent of his brother, laid out and bared for him, wafted its way up Tom's nostrils and into the pleasure sensors of his brain.

Finally he reached a tentative hand further down Bill's body, and began lightly caressing and circling his fingers around Bill's asshole. He spit into his hand and brought it down again so the pad of his index finger slid more smoothly over the small puckered hole. 

This was all on instinct. Tom knew the mechanics of gay sex, but before this last month had never imagined he would be a participant. Especially not with his brother. He squeezed his eyes shut for a moment and thanked the stars he was here now though. 

Bill was so beautiful, thought Tom. Instead of watching what he was doing with his fingers, he examined the nuances of his twin's content facial expressions. Bill looked relaxed, and when Tom prodded two fingers at the entrance of his mouth, Bill accepted them eagerly.

The younger twin lapped at the fingers in his mouth hungrily, as if he was tasting a very different body part. The visual had Tom gulping back his enthusiasm in order to control himself. After much longer than compulsory to get the digits slick, he withdrew them from Bill's mouth which trailed a line of spit down his chin.

Bill daintily wiped at his chin and looked back at Tom with a raised eyebrow and a naughty grin. Not so subtle seduction on his part. Especially not when Tom's fingers arrived at his hole again and Bill said "Wow. Slippery." He winked mischievously.

"You know what they say: Slippery when wet," he chuckled in his normal cocky style, before bending over to give Bill a quick peck. 

Tom's index finger breached Bill's body with no resistance, and he found that he could add a second finger soon after. He twisted and scissored his fingers inside the pillowy cavern that was Bill's bottom, all the while watching Bill's face for any pain.

The singer was in a daze. Tomi's fingers are in my butt and it's not weird. He almost giggled. And Tom is being so wonderful with me.

Bill was ripped out of his daydream by an overwhelming rush of heat which made his back arch instinctively. He craned his neck to try and see what Tom had done to achieve such a result.

"I found it, right?" Tom smiled up at him.

Then Bill remembered what must have happened. "My prostate. Yeah. Do it again Tomi," he replied dreamily just as the pads of Tom's fingers alighted that part of him again. This time, Bill's expression stirred in a show of discomfort and Tom stopped his ministrations.

"One sec. I need to go find the lube." Tom traipsed to their bathroom quickly to find the 'KY' he knew was hidden somewhere under the sink.

Upon arriving back to the bed, Bill had moved up so his head lay on the pillows and spread his legs further so he could reach his little pink opening himself. He had three fingers buried deep into his small bum and it was the hottest thing Tom had ever seen.

"Fuck, Bill! You little minx," he exclaimed. "You're so fucking sexy."

Bill grinned back at him, but it didn't last long for he swiped across his prostate and his face contorted in pleasure. 

Tom squeezed the base of his own cock in reaction. He needed to calm down or he was going to blow his load right there and then. Dragging his eyes away from the way Bill was working his fingers into his own body, he perched himself over Bill and kissed his collar bone. From his neck, his lips traveled to his hairline and he bit at his twin's ear. Bill squeaked cutely and then Tom devoured his mouth in a sloppy kiss. 

The younger twin had found his courage. He retracted his hand from his asshole and ended their kiss by grabbing Tom's member; which Tom was profoundly grateful for, seeing as his cock hadn't gotten much attention today: only frustration and relentless teasing under Bill's sex-kitten administration. Bill knew that was the case as well.

"Don't worry, Tomi. You'll get to jump me soon enough." He followed the devilish comment by uncapping the tube his brother had brought to bed, and squirting a generous amount into his hand, which he proceeded to wrap around Tom's aching cock.

Bill pumped his hand over Tom's hardon much too jubilantly for a virgin. Maybe it was the fact that Bill was also a boy and knew how to use the equipment, or that he felt comfortable with his twin, but he wasn't showing any signs of hesitation. 

Tom would have questioned Bill's certainty as well if the way his dick felt hadn't told him to shut up. "Stop, stop!" he cried. "I'm not gonna last if you keep doing that." He shivered as Bill stopped right before he could climax.

Anyways, Bill wasn't the type to regret even his dumbest decisions. Perhaps sleeping with your twin was the dumbest of all, but Tom planned to take care of Bill and any tumultuous aftermath. Right now, they needed this. And it wasn't like he was going to hurt Bill; if anything should happen he'd stop.

So he proceeded with his plan of ridding his baby brother of his virginity by applying more lube to his fingers and making sure Bill's insides were coated and ready. 

Tom grabbed one of Bill's hands into his and kissed it affectionately. "You sure you want this?"

"As sure as you are," Bill replied with a smile, before wrapping his legs around Tom's waist and trying to relax. 

Tom positioned himself at Bill's entrance and said, "I love you, ok?"

"Dummy. I know." Bill rolled his eyes but had a brilliant smile. "I love you too. Now just do it." 

For all Bill's assertiveness, he still clenched when Tom pressed his cock in past the pink ring of muscle. Tom inhaled sharply at the constriction.

"Sorry," Bill quipped, and then relaxed again.

"Just tell me if it hurts." Tom's forehead wrinkled in concentration.

It was obvious Tom was bigger than the fingers they'd previously inserted.

"Yeah, it hurts. But don't stop, it's ok," Bill encouraged, so Tom sunk himself deeper in what was the slowest pace he could manage. The friction on his cock was wickedly good and it look discipline not too plunge into the heat full force.

When a tear escaped down Bill's cheek, Tom squeezed his hand. He knew how his brother was. "You don't want me to stop, do you?" 

Bill shook his head.

In order to keep himself in check as well, Tom dipped his head to kiss Bill's panting mouth as he seated his erection into Bill completely. He tried to lessen the pain Bill felt by stimulating him in other ways. He raised their joined hands above Bill's head and massaged Bill's hip and thigh with the other, all the while kissing him passionately.

Tom swiped his tongue over Bill's and held them steady at the hip until it was Bill who started shifting under him.

"Move Tomi," he mumbled against Tom's lips.

His brother obliged. Gently, he pulled back and pushed forward again slowly. Again. This time, the angle was right for Tom's cock to brush Bill's prostate and Bill shut his eyes tight. 

Tom thrust in again. And again. Until Bill was a withering wreck.

Their hands locked, restrained above his own head, Bill felt euphoric. He was sure he could come like this, just like this, the way Tom was plowing into him. 

"Fuck!" He squealed at a particularly good slam of their hips.

Tom opened his eyes to see Bill's mouth slack as he moaned with every stab to his sweet spot. "Fuck, fuck, Bill." Tom closed his eyes again. It was too much. 

He released Bill's hand and closed it around the boy's prominent arousal, pumping him along to the rhythm of his thrusts.

Bill reached forward to drag Tom's face to his to make out, but they never got to. 

Tom groaned as his dick was squeezed even tighter from bending over and he orgasmed; leaving more of his seed inside Bill with every impetus until he became too sensitive and only panted into Bill's mouth. Aftershocks coursing though his body, Tom pulled out and focused on stroking his partner into completion as well.

Bill kept a strong grip on Tom's shoulders to keep him close, and the nearer he got to his climax the more he wound his hands into Tom's long dreads. It didn't take long before Bill also tipped over the edge. Flashes shot behind his eyes, and sparks flew from his abdomen to his very fingertips as his own orgasm washed over him. Tom milked his cock until he was spent and then lifted his soiled hand up to his mouth. He took a tentative lick and then Bill popped his tongue out for a much more ambitious lick of his own fluids.

Tom's eyes rolled back as a shudder coursed though him from the sight. "Bill!" he yelped in amazement, like it was any more condemnable than what they had just done. 

"Mhmmm," Bill hummed around Tom's fingers as he licked them clean. "I want to do this to you too. Really soon Tomi." He gave Tom a big toothy smile, as if he hadn't just committed a dozen or more sins, and then sunk his devious tongue into his twin's mouth.

Tom just nodded into the kiss. His brother really was a little sex kitten, and right now he was swept far away into such a Utopia that he didn't care what he'd just admitted to. Truthfully, he wasn't sure if Bill wanted to fuck him or just suck him off.

---

In the following week, Tokio Hotel spent a majority of their time in their familiar hometown studio, laying down the remaining vocals and instrumental parts for their upcoming album. The tight schedule spared them little time but that to eat and sleep as they worked on the music. It resulted in the boys napping on the studio couches, eating during playback of recently-recorded fragments, taking potty breaks only while the techs searched for sound effects; and all-in-all living in closer quarters than they had when their band could only afford one tourbus.

Among friends, Bill grew lax about his outfit choices, and both the twins had taken turns slipping up marginally and nearly revealing what was no longer normal brotherly etiquette. They promised each other to be more careful when they went back on the road, and hoped fatigue would be enough to erase any suspicion of their relationship from the G's minds.

When their recording was over, the boys packed up and left the remaining engineering and post-production to the higher-ups and embarked on yet another advertising tour.

By the week of the new album release, Bill Kaulitz had become an international staple in not only tabloids, but fashion magazines too for his outrageous clothing choices.

---

With morning coffee and laptop computer in hand, David Jost sat down at the makeshift desk in his hotel room. The album release and the largely demanding, still unabated, marketing that came with it was taking a toll on his nerves. The twins were his major source of disappointment and disorder.

Sighing, he checked his email and found a message from Yates Kohler, his Universal label executive contact. He reluctantly clicked to open the link.

David read over the screen in front of him in disbelief. Tokio Hotel's chart ratings worldwide and album sales were much higher than predicted. Then he looked at the new US numbers and found the same unexpected result.

Well, I'll be damned. He smirked and he scratched his nape in confusion. Bill had proven them all wrong.

---

Chapter Text

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CHAPTER SIX:
THE RING

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After months of what seemed like a neverending tour-slash-advertising-campaign of not only concerts, but TV appearances, signings, interviews, and other miscellaneous appointments involved with the release of Tokio Hotel's latest album, the Kaulitz twins were finally going back home for a break. The band, as well as David and a few of their security team were in vans driving to the airport to catch a trans-Atlantic flight back to Germany for a week with their families.

David Jost was seated in the passenger seat of the van carrying the twins, who were on the very back bench whispering to each other and giggling like schoolgirls. In the side-mirror of the vehicle, he was able to catch glimpses of flailing limbs, but mainly he stared at Tom's shoulder and the side of his head. 

He reflected upon about how unexpectedly well the release had gone and how unbelievably good their luck was that the public, somehow, miraculously hadn't been turned off by the way Bill had changed his look. Bill's outfit this evening consisted of a strange jacket-sweater article in crocodile-embossed leather, with shiny silver pants and silver accessories, topped off with high-heeled ankle boots. They had come straight from a last-minute interview with a web-magazine at which Bill had actually been complimented on such a "fantastic ensemble". 

All David could think about was How the blinking Jesus was that called fashion?! His lead singer looked like a dress-mannequin for Barbie and Ken mixed together, and people liked him for it!

Maybe he was getting old. Maybe Universal felt uncomfortable sanctioning an image more popular with Indie bands. Maybe this generation's youth were completely warped in the head. Whatever the reason for the success, David and Yates could only attribute it to letting the twins off the leash. The two men had actually discussed this at length several nights ago and came to the professional equivalent of throwing their hands up and saying "Fuck It!" to anything the twins wanted to do.

All he had to do now is let Bill know he had the green light, that he was no longer going to discourage any (by any, he meant most within reason) outrageous fashion choices, and because his guilty conscience told him to: he wanted to apologize. He stared at Tom's shoulder and thought about how such an admission should be made.

Tom eventually shifted in his seat and David had seen the twins peck on the lips before Bill settled his head on his brother's shoulder. The boy had slid his hand into the neck of Tom's shirt leaving it on his pectoral, and Tom's kissed his forehead in return.

Strange, thought David. In the half-decade he'd been working with the Kaulitzes, he'd rarely seen them act so carefree. No, that wasn't the word. Romantic? Naw, that wasn't right either. He couldn't put his finger on it, but the brothers looked calm and happy. Shrugging, he didn't think about it any further.

David looked away from the drowsy couple in the back and saw the driver had turned into the drop-off lane of the airport Departures terminal. A minute later Tom was out back removing luggage with Deiter and Reggy from the trunk, while Bill packed up his iPod and finally stepped out onto the curb.

Now was a good a time as any for an apology, the manager supposed.

"Hey Bill, can we talk a moment?" He touched the boy on the arm, and took him aside.

"What's up Dave?" Bill looked at the man, suspicious already.

"Well, Yates and I had a chat--"

Bill rolled his eyes and turned away. Oh, it was going to be another one of those.

"Wait Bill. You don't even know what I'm going to say," he pronounced as he grabbed the singer's elbow so that he wouldn't walk away.

The small smile David was trying to give him had Bill nervous. Did Jost finally take a chill pill? or did he have some news even he wasn't happy about? He crossed his bony arms before contesting, "So you're not going to ruin my day and tell me some shit about how effeminate I look?" He raised an eyebrow.

David looked away briefly to compose himself. He chose to ignore what Bill had just said. "I started saying that Yates and I talked about how you and your brother have been running wild lately, AND--," he said quickly, before Bill could rebut, "and, we don't want to say we're happy about it, but we admit that it hasn't turned out as badly as we thought."

Bill was still looking at his manager with a raised eyebrow. He looked like a teenager waiting for his parent to finish scolding him.

"Truthfully we're scratching our heads at how you managed to interest the fashion industry in you, but we also see that this has some great potential for expansion. I'm personally going to make an effort in branching out to brand names and get you modeling and stuff."

The sour look on Bill's face diminished but his guard was still up. "I only want the best designers. No Old Navy or that bullshit, I won't do it."

"If you're successful, we can think about a fashion line or a similar collaboration with a major label."

Bill considered. He pursed his lips and squinted at David as if to intimidate him into admitting that this was all a farce. When no such admission came, but David still waited for Bill to speak, Bill repeated what he'd already said. He didn't want his face plastered on cheap department stores. He wanted to wear and work with the likes of Galliano, Lagerfeld and Gaultier. 

"So you want do go after the big fish?"

"The biggest fish." Bill grinned.

"We're not going to get Dior and Chanel right away, you know that? But I'll work on getting some other big couture runway name on board, talk it over with Yates and the team as well."

They were getting somewhere and this made Bill smile.

"The only thing you have to worry about in this venture is making sure you're fashionable," David made air-quotes for emphasis, "at all times, and make Tom look half as spiffy as you do." 

The young singer nodded in understanding. 

"I realize that taking this new path is pretty much condoning the effeminate-" David once again made air-quotes, "way you dress, but I'm hoping the public will view it more as daring. If you look like that, at least it came off a runway and they can't blame it on you being gay." David laughed, while Bill frowned slightly. "Hey, I don't want to see excessive nudity, like ass-less chaps just cause it was on a runway, or whatever they make these days, but we'll work on this, ok?"

Bill laughed. Old men were so clueless about fashion. "Yeah, no worries. I'm down with this fashion thing a hundred percent." He was already thinking about putting Tom in Dior, almost salivating at the thought.

Before Bill could go back and grab his luggage from where it was now lined up at the curb by the other men who were laughing among themselves, David caught Bill's elbow again. "Bill, one more thing."

"Yes David?"

"I wanna say I'm sorry I was so harsh. You're a good kid, and you turned out to be right about this thing."

"Oh." Bill was shocked. Never in a million years had he thought he'd hear something like that from Jost. In fact, he twisted his pinky into his ear to make sure he wasn't having an auditory hallucination.

"I'll trust you to be mature about this, and we'll talk more from now on, ok?"

"Yeah, sure. Sounds good," Bill agreed, still quite bewildered at what had just transpired.

---

The twins were on their mother's doorstep again, waiting for her to answer the door. Bill had made Tom keep his word, and this time they planned to say for at least three days before spending the rest of their break in their own apartment.

Tom however, was still trying to get out of their agreement. "Wouldn't you rather be at our place where I can ravage your body in private?" he wiggled his eyebrows suggestively.

"Shut up Tom. One, it's not fair to Mom. Two, she could hear you!" Bill made a horrified face, as if he was spelling something foul.

"Hear what, huh?" Simone opened the door and greeted them with big hugs, one for each of her sons. "So, hear what?" she smiled.

"Um, how glad we are to see our parents again?" Bill bluffed, and of course Simone knew it too.

"I'm sure," she chided. "Come on in then. It's always too long between when my boys visit me. Gordon's home too, but he's on the phone." The ginger woman stepped aside to let the boys deposit their bags in the foyer.

Bill peeked down the hall into the kitchen where Gordon had the family's old, faded, and corded home-phone clutched between his shoulder and jaw. He caught sight of the twins being home, and raised his hand in a single-finger salute that said "I'll be a second". Bill waved back at his step-father.

When they all gathered into the living room, the younger twin began recounting a thousand and one stories from their recent tour. "And the interview with GQ, Tom and I are both in it. There's a ton of good pictures, and I remember the photographer told me she liked my shoes. She was a nice woman..." he chattered. "Almost didn't believe me when I said those were my own. The stylists like what I wear, sometimes they keep parts of what I'm wearing and let me wear it on the shoot. I like dressing up though. That open black shirt from that one shoot, the one with--"

"It was for Blender. The shirt was Dolce." Tom filled in his brother's blanks. It was normal behavior for them to be finishing each other's sentences.

"--yeah, it was one of my faves. I wanna find it online. And that sweater, Tom--"

"Black on black argyle, from Gareth what's-his-face."

"--- yeah, I liked that one on you," the younger twin jabbered happily. He took Tom's hand and said, "I'm gonna buy you that one too."

Tom's face pinked and when he looked up from where his hand joined his brother's on the couch, he found his mother's eyes on him. For some reason, Tom had the feeling she saw right through them. It made him uncomfortable and he dropped her gaze.

"Oh, Tom, TOM! I just remembered!" Bill clamored.

The guitarist almost rolled his eyes at the way Bill got excited over telling stories. "What happened?" he asked, curious nonetheless.

"David, when we got off at the airport, guess what he told me?" he squeezed Tom's hand and grinned stupidly.

Gordon laughed. "You guys get your own plane?" he perked at the speculation.

Bill turned to him and shook his head. "I wish! Naw, he said sorry for being a dick and said, like, he said he's going to go after more fashion gigs for us, and maybe my own fashion line!" He was practically bouncing in his seat at the prospect.

"Bill, you dummy. Why didn't you tell me sooner?" Tom shoved his foot into his brother's for emphasis. He was happy that Bill was happy, and the big smile on his own face reflected that.

"I forgot. Sorry, jeez." 

Tom then looked back at Simone. She seemed more reserved than normal, or maybe it was just his paranoia. Again, the idea that his relationship with Bill was discernible made Tom shallow nervously and he couldn't stand watching her any more. It probably didn't help their situation that Bill announced aloud that they should "celebrate later" and poked Tom in the ribs.

The conversation then changed to the new art piece Simone had been working on this past week. Gordon chuckled when she led the twins away to the small den at the back of the house which housed all her art and supplies, so she could show it to them.

Their family dinner that evening ran late into the night, and so the twins only got to talk privately again after 11:00PM. Tom sat on his childhood bed as Bill looked through Tom's desk drawer aimlessly. They talked about David and the fashion image they wanted to forge. As always, Bill was full of ideas about the future.

When Bill didn't find anything interesting in Tom's drawer other than some stubby crayons he remembered from grade school, he moved on to scavenging through Tom's closet; also aimlessly. 

Tom watched his brother move and his mind zoned out. The elder Kaulitz was now thinking about how fabulous his brother looked bent over like that, and pretending he had x-ray vision to see the black lace boyshorts he knew for a fact his brother was wearing under those pants.

His eyes had glazed over and he didn't even see when Bill turned around to face him again. "Tom! I said, how do you feel like celebrating?"

"What?" Tom's head snapped up, and saw his brother was looking at him amusedly.

"You do feel like... celebrating, right?" he asked yet again, this time with a raised eyebrow.

Tom hurried to reply. "Yes! Yes. ...How?"

Bill's smile got even brighter. "Well, I wanted to go for a swim with you, but since I didn't find any swim trunks in your closet, I want to go skinny dipping now."

"Now?"

"Yeah, now. It's the great idea I just had. Mom and Gordon have gone to bed so they won't see, and it's not like they'll mind if we use the pool anyways. What do you say?"

Tom seemed unsure at first, but then Bill began sliding his hand down his side in a sexy manner, and then the hand made it underneath his shirt, where he was positive Bill was rubbing his own nipple. The air seemed to get thinner as he watched Bill tease his own waist band with his other hand, and he couldn't take it anymore when Bill finally reached into his own pants to touch himself.

"Tease," Tom accused breathlessly, as his lips had already reached his brother's, and his hand was already on top of Bill's helping to put pressure on the area that made Bill moan back. They kissed, slow and hot. With every wave of arousal that emanated at his groin, Bill would push his tongue deeper into Tom's mouth, mewing in excitement. Tom pushed him back into the closet door which clanked loudly. He was intending to make love to his brother against the wall, but the noise awakened Bill back to alertness.

Pinned against the culprit closet door, Bill remembered his wish of skinny dipping. "Common Tom, we should go. It'll be quieter in the back yard anyways," he reasoned.

Tom could hardly say No when Bill made that pouty face at him. And so, after grabbing towels and tip-toeing down the stairs, the boys made their way to their parent's small backyard pool. The basin was almost as old as the house and about a quarter of the tiles were cracked, but at least it wasn't one of those dinky above-ground pools.

It was a little late in the season to be taking a swim outdoors as Bill soon found out. He had lowered his pants, winked at Tom, and nose-dived straight into the deep end. He surfaced shivering already, and was about to say "Holy shit, its fucking freezing!", but Tom asked him how the temperature was.

"It's pretty good. Freezing when you get in, but it's feeling better al- already." Bill lied smoothly enough even though his teeth began chattering.

Tom laughed. "I don't believe you. Your lips are turning blue."

"Toooooom! Please get in. I can't do this myself." There was that magic pout again.

The older Kaulitz sighed. Of course he would get in. Slowly, painfully slow actually, he stepped farther down the stairs into the shallow end. Bill floated nearby, huddling into himself to keep warm.

"Fuck, fuck, fuck! Fuck you little brother!" Tom swore savagely, his words obviously more intended for the icy water he was submerging himself into rather than the giggling boy before him.

"You wanna, Tomi?" Bill asked seductively. "You wanna fuck me, don't you?"

"Not now," he gritted through his teeth.

Tom finally stepped onto the floor of the pool. The water billowed only at mid-waist for him, but it was deep enough and cold enough to make him shut his eyes for composure. 

Bill's giggles filled the air. "You're so cute. Just get in."

"I am in." Tom squinted at him reproachfully, then got a hair tie off his wrist and bunched his dreadlocks further up on his head. His little brother was still laughing though. Tom waded a bit closer to him and with a great big swing of his arm, a huge swell of water had Bill soaked all over again.

"Motherfucker!" the younger twin yelled, as he retaliated with wave after wave directed at Tom.

Tom fought back, splashing with all his might, trying not to wet his hair. That was one of the drawbacks to having meter-long dreadlocks: it always gave Bill the upper hand at water games, who could just immerse himself in the water to avoid any attacks. One day, when he was middle-aged or older and didn't have dreads anymore, he vowed to get his brother back for all the years of wrongful victories.

Back in the house, Simone had come downstairs to get a glass of milk. Her mind wouldn't let her rest. Having the twins return home, being all noisy and rambunctious, always reminded her of when they were young. Then fame had come and taken them away from her, and she saw them grow up on TV and in magazines. Sometimes she was jealous of David Jost, the man who got to parent her children more than her.

As she leaned on the kitchen counter reminiscing, she heard giggles and splashes coming from outside. Simone moved into her art alcove where she had a perfect view of her sons playing in the pool. The old-time memories made her stick around and watch them wrestle in the water.

"Quit it! Quit it, oh my god, or I'm going to hold you under water!" Tom threatened, because his brother was definitely winning. Somehow, he got a hold of Bill's arm, then the other one, and managed to hold him down under for a few seconds. Bill fought back, and the second time he was submerged, Tom had him in a neck brace. He came up spluttering and swatting Tom away from him as Tom laughed. "Will you be good now?"

"Will you fuck me now?" the younger Kaulitz retorted.

"Not here, and you know that," he said as he nonetheless got closer to Bill. "I don't wanna fuck at our parents place. It creeps me out."

Bill placed his hands on Tom's toned chest and looked into his eyes. "Chicken?" he asked with a smirk.

"No. Well, yes. Like, ew."

Bill wasn't backing down though, he wanted at least a little action, otherwise he wouldn't have suggested swimming naked in ice-cold water. He reached his hand to Tom's cock and started massaging it to life.

Their mother was still watching from indoors. She'd zoned out for a second thinking about how she'd told Gordon a month ago to empty out the pool and prep it for winter, and when she looked back at her sons she almost dropped her cup of milk.

Tom's eyes were closed as Bill stroked his cock under water. His neck bared, his twin kissed and sucked up his neck until he reached his ear, where he whispered "Is this ew as well, Tomi?"

Tom didn't answer, he only grabbed the back of Bill's neck and smushed their lips together for a kiss hot enough to scorch the water they were in until it was only vapours. He grabbed handfuls of his brother's silky hair, keeping their faces close dare he part their mouths. They traveled to the stairs at the shallow end, where Tom could sit and continue to kiss Bill, ultimately giving their mother an even better view of their improprieties.

The elder twin moaned with every stroke on his cock. The varying temperature between Bill's warm hand and the cold water was something he'd never felt before and it was working wonders on his arousal. He was getting close to finishing and he knew it. Breathing heavily into the kiss, he spoke "I'm gonna--" before plunging his tongue even deeper into his twin's mouth and releasing into his pumping hand.

Bill held and caressed his cock until he became supersensitive and Tom shuddered from the smallest touches which sent pleasure to his very fingertips. He panted into his twin's face, as Bill continued kissing him soft and lazy.

---

When Tom woke up the next morning, it was to a wet pillow and Bill hogging the majority of their blanket. Nevertheless, he felt great. After trying to dillydally in bed because it was still early by caressing the small of Bill's back as he slept, Tom decided to get up anyways.

Down in the kitchen, Simone was pouring herself a cup of coffee. 

"Morning, Mother," Tom greeted cheerfully.

"Morning, Tom. Would you like coffee?" she asked without looking up.

"Yeah, for sure. Where are the cups again? I forgot."

"The cupboard to the right of the stove."

Once Tom had creamed and sugared his coffee and sat down at the kitchen island, the conversation dwindled to nothing. Mother and son sat there nursing their own cups, sipping occasionally. While Tom was in a fantastic mood, his mother was completely tormented in her thoughts. She wondered if it was a good idea to even bring it up anymore. What she saw last night could have been the first and only time her sons would behave that way. She huffed, not believing such a thing for a second. She knew deep down that she had suspected them of something minor, perhaps not this big though. This had most likely developed on tour and whether it had been going on for a while or it was still new for them, she came prepared to remind at least one of her sons what he was missing. The little box in her robe pocket shifted against her leg when she crossed her legs. 

The frown on her face betrayed her, for Tom asked if she was ok this morning.

Did she really want to go through with this? She pondered a last time before answering.

"No Tom." She looked up at her son. Some emotion she couldn't place flashed across his face for a second before it disappeared. "Do you know what I'm talking about?"

"Not a clue. How's your painting going?" Tom stared at his own coffee, his mind swearing madly. FUCK. SHIT. FUCK. FUCKFUCK!! He tried to divert the conversation uselessly.

She studied his face. Her son was not the most open person emotionally, but right now it was clear as daylight that he was lying through his teeth. Even so, it gave her one last exit. One last opportunity to not open what was obviously a Pandora's Box. "My painting is fine. What are you and your brother doing?"

"Umm, well, I'm here and Bill's upstairs sleeping I suppose," he replied nonchalantly. Yes Tom, that speck of dust floating around in your coffee, focus on that.

"Is that all?" she pressed.

Tom nodded, and got up off his chair, not meeting the deathly stare in his mother's eyes. "I should go see if he's up."

"Sit down Tom. I'm talking to you," she rose her voice in warning. "What you two did in the pool last night, it's happened before, right?"

Tom was reluctant to admit to anything. If he dodged it long enough, maybe Simone would drop the discussion. "Um, yeah, we've gone swimming before." 

"Stop playing with me, Tom. It's happened before. Hasn't it?"

He grumbled. It seemed like the speck of dust, nor the scratch on the countertop, nor his ugly toes were going to get him out of this. "What do you want me to say?" he finally acknowledged the subject with a frown.

"Say that it was a mistake. Say that it will never happen again," she filled in for him with an austere look.

That request was preposterous. Tom almost laughed. Bill was the love of his life, and what they had started doing was so natural, he wondered how they hadn't done it their whole lives. "I can't do that, Mom."

"Tom, whatever this is that you two are going through, you'll grow out of it." She continued talking past Tom's snort, "I'm not saying I expect Bill to bring home some young lady, but I always thought you at least would get married and settle down one day. Think about the consequences. You're going to ruin both your futures if it gets out of hand." She tried to make her son see reason.

"It's not some phase, I love him."

"I know honey, but don't get confused. He's your brother," she coaxed gently. "There are plenty of lovely girls out there that you've yet to meet. They get older and wiser and they're not always going to be the brainless teenagers you see at your concerts. They're not all like that."

Tom smirked, "Mom, I know, but I'm not interested."

His mother's face contorted into a wicked grimace. "Will you just listen to me for once? I'm trying to make you understand that you're making a terrible error in judgement here. Stop being so goddamn stubborn!" she barked, in a completely new argumentative strategy.

That was a mistake on her part. See, while on the road, that twins had become used to being granted every whim, and with the exception of David, being treated like royalty. The thing they hated the most were rules: being tied down and told what to do. They'd spent a majority of their young lives breaking every rule they could think of, and fighting a calamitous war against those trying to restrain them. She had hit a cord with the boy in her midst, and as he balled his fists, he yelled back, "No! I don't care what you think! I LOVE HIM, SO JUST STAY OUT OF IT!!"

He turned to leave, but Simone caught him by the arm. "Tom, wait. I swear it's for the best. I'm just trying to help."

"Well you're not. Bill is everything I've ever needed." His jaw was tight and the tears in his eyes threatened to spill down his cheek. That was the truth, Bill was everything.

Simone raised her hand to her son's face but he moved away from her touch. Instead, she reached for his hand and placed in it a small black box. "Here. Take this, and don't disappoint your grandmother. Use this to marry some pretty girl in the future." 

Tom looked back at her with hateful eyes.

"Don't Tom," she said sternly. "You'll get over this."

He really wanted to keep yelling, and bitch at his mother for not understanding her sons one bit. But alas, it was his mother and he couldn't do that, especially not after shattering her dreams with such a surprise. With one nod to end the debate, he ran back upstairs before he could start crying.

Bill had awoken due to the shouting from the kitchen, and when Tom burst in with red cheeks and watering eyes, he rushed to hold his brother. "She knows, doesn't she?" the singer asked weakly.

Tom couldn't answer. His heart beat so fast, he felt as if it was constricting his airways. He inhaled the sweet scent of his twin, squeezing him sharply before nodding. The weight of their relationship seemed to have grown since the last time he was in this room. A tear found its path down Tom's face, landing on Bill's shoulder, and he shook fiercely from the emotion. Bill held him tighter, telling him it was ok to cry. For once, Bill tried to hold himself together, to be the strong one instead.

When enough tears had soaked through Bill's tshirt, Tom whispered, "This is forever," as if his life depended on it. This was forever, and it always had been. He kissed his twin's face feverishly and clumsily swiped hair away with his shaking fingers.

"Yes, Tomi. Forever," Bill breathed back.

As they stood wrapped in each other's arms, Tom thought back on how it had started. Even before he started to fancy Bill, he knew they were going to spend the rest of their lives together; but as brothers, best friends. Like his mother had said, he had figured that out of the dozens of girls he bedded, that one day he would find a meaningful connection. When Bill forced open the door of intimate contact for them however, it finally felt as if the pieces of the puzzle were falling into place. Tom didn't need anyone else because he could find that last puzzle piece in Bill as well.

Tom wondered when exactly it was he stopped feeling like a pervert for desiring his brother in a sexual way. It must have been the moment he realized the magnitude of what he'd been saying in interviews this whole time about them being soulmates. Somewhere along the line, Bill had made the transition from "twin" to "another part of me", where they were no longer two beings that were separated, but two parts of the same whole. Therefore being together in every way was just normal and natural. If anyone should understand this, it should be the woman who gave birth to them. Alas, she thought she could guilt-trip Tom into marrying some girl just because she handed him his grandmother's engagement ring.

By the time Tom had finished his internal monologue, all he wanted to do was shout from the rooftops how much he loved Bill until someone would believe that this wasn't a phase, or something. Unfortunately, doing such a thing was worse than shooting oneself in the foot. He was however now one step closer to a silent affirmation of the exact same pledge. 

He gathered the courage to look into Bill's eyes. With a smile, he took Bill's hands into his own, and lowered himself onto one knee. 

Bill felt as if his heart had stopped beating. This was a dream, one he never thought would have been realized. His smile beamed brighter than the sun filtering through the curtains, and if he wasn't so stunned, he would have squealed in his usual exuberant manner.

Tom looked up at his twin with a shy grin, then cleared the lump in his throat, and spoke, "Be mine forever." He took the velvet box from his pocket and opened it to reveal a moderate-sized diamond and gold ring. Looking up at his lover, he felt as if all the sorrows in the world had been resolved.

"I already am, but sure, you can put that thing on my finger," Bill laughed.

"Well, you know, in an official but actually unofficial way," Tom disclaimed with a smirk as he placed the ring on his brother's finger.

Fuck marrying some stranger, when Bill would look better in a white dress anyway.

---

 

THE END.