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hey you got drugs?

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The sky outside the flower-decorated window was darkened, evening sweeping over the city. It washed over the glowing hotel lobby where fifty people, all in various shades of emotional, were gathered. The happy couple stood at the front of the aisle, their murmured exchange drowned out by the thunderous applause. Theodosia and Aaron Burr were officially married.

It had been two years of change since John Laurens had died. Two years of drugs and meaningless hookups, all without the stabilizing light of his better half. Now, having arrived at a place of understanding, Alexander recalled the voices in his head saying he could never change. Maybe he never really did, not completely. But standing amongst the rows of guests, dressed in a suit he had dug up from the back of his closet, standing next to the last man he’d ever thought he would love—Alexander knew that he was different than when he first put John into the ground.

He and Thomas had gotten up somewhere around noon, rubbing the hazy stick of sleep from their eyes and kissing as long as they could stand the other’s morning breath. It was beyond nice, the intimacy and comfort of waking up to someone that wasn’t going to disappear. Alexander thought back to when every hour spent with Thomas was temporary. Keep loving me for a night , he would plead silently. Please don’t leave again.

But now they were together. And Alexander didn’t have to be scared.

As the newlyweds walked back down the aisle together, Thomas reached out and laced his fingers with Alexander’s. A silent show of affection.

“I don’t suppose we have to get married now?” Thomas whispered, smiling broadly. “Not that I mind being tied to you until death do us part but….”

Alexander stood up on his toes to respond. “Think you’re free? I don’t quit.” The crowd was starting to disperse, scatter around as the lamps lighting up the rented lobby turned dark blue, then red, then yellow. Nightclub themed, how wonderfully ironic.

Thomas stepped away, and Alexander found himself staring. He cleaned up well, always had, even when Alexander refused to admit it. The way he looked now was bringing back memories of another club, almost a year ago, when Thomas was nothing but a sweet escape, used only for a while. Just as expendable as clothes to try on. But he quickly became so much more.

“What’re you thinking about?” Thomas asked. “Actually, never mind, don’t answer that. Dance with me?” He reached a hand out to Alexander, beckoning him forward. Alexander looked towards the dance floor and paused, remembering all the times before; dancing away. Back then it was all fun and games, until it wasn't. Even though he had Thomas in his corner now, he still didn’t want to take the risk of falling back into addiction and seeing everything around him crumble.

Alexander took Thomas’s hand, let himself be spun in a circle before latching on to some techno beat coming from the speakers. Elation soared in his heart, and he was startled by the realization that he didn’t want to go home.

“C’mon, better dance for us,” Thomas chuckled, body matching up to Alexander’s until they were dancing together, limbs pulsing to the beat. Alexander grinned wildly, feeling more alive than he had in a long time. But then he hesitated a moment, remembering that night in the club where they had spoken for the first time without fighting. They were both fucked but, oh it's so fun.

Thomas slowed them down into a sway, another frown reappearing on his face. “By the way, how are you holding up?”

Alexander rolled his eyes. It was a valid question. After all, being surrounded by so much stimuli wasn’t going to be good for anyone, much less a recovering addict. “I’m fine. I just...don’t want to think about tomorrow. I don’t want to know it.”  The song’s beat had tapered off slightly, so they were left with the same rhythm.

“If it ever comes or not.” Although the words were concerning, the way Thomas said it was more amusing than anything else. Alexander dug his fingers into Thomas’s belt and pulled them flush against each other, just like he did so long ago. He leaned up and whispered into Thomas’s ear. The beat dropped, and Alexander’s heart rate picked up along with it.

“But I promise for life, you can brag about tonight.” They both laughed.

Somewhere between the neon strobe lights and the dancing and the adrenaline, Alexander realized something.

John wouldn’t save the night for Alexander, he was gone. Eliza wouldn’t save the night for Alexander because he wouldn’t let her and because she needed to save herself. And he had thought Thomas wouldn’t want to save the night for him either, but in reality, he did.

It was the most miraculous part of Alexander’s life, all leading them up to this moment. His words came to him easily in his joy, and Thomas watched him speak as they spun and twisted and danced.

“I’m not ever gonna….—”


 

“—go home?” Maria tilted her head at Eliza, who looked almost uncomfortable, fiddling with the blue sleeves of her dress and glancing around the room. The three of them: Maria, Angelica, and Eliza stood on the outskirts of the crowd. She couldn't help but feel bad for her; while Maria and Angelica were side by side, arms linked together, Eliza only got painful reminders of the love she had and lost. After all, Alexander Hamilton was invited to the wedding.

“I'm okay,” Eliza said, smiling reassuringly.

Maria had become friends with her fairly quickly, to Angelica’s delight. She remembered one time, in bed with Angelica, when she asked about Eliza’s history. Angelica had told her that Eliza was a good girl in high school, but because of her crush of Hamilton, always got stuck with the crowd of people that chased joints instead of relationships. And that bad habit extended to her adult life, surrounded by ten years of highs, just for fun. But they were over that, finding better places to go. Just because Hamilton got caught by his addictions didn't mean Eliza had to follow in his footsteps.

Maria followed Eliza’s gaze to find her staring at Hamilton, dancing with another man. She heard Angelica scoff ‘Jefferson’ under her breath. Eliza must have realized what she was doing because she turned to Maria and said:

“Pain from the past, it's like a small piece of glass in my heart.”

Maria knew exactly what she meant. After the court trial, she made five agonizing seconds of eye-contact with Reynolds because he was cuffed and guided out, found guilty on charges of marital rape and domestic violence. Those short moments made Maria feel like someone had gone to town on a glass window in her chest.

Maria and Angelica moved at the same time, enveloping Eliza on a hug. She pulled away, looking apologetic.

“Hey, I'm just going to say hi to Theo, okay?” Eliza glanced over at Alexander again, and then steeled her expression. “Try not to start having sex while I'm gone, okay?”

Maria laughed, while Angelica shouted: “It was only one time!” Eliza’s eyes sparked with the slightest bit of joy as she walked away, and Maria knew things were going to be alright. Eliza was strong and Hamilton was a jackass anyway.

Angelica kissed Maria's cheek, pulling her closer by the waist. “How are you feeling?”

Maria sighed. “I want to be happy for my friend, I mean, Aaron’s probably the most sensible one out of all of us. This should be the time of my life, but really I'm just happy that you made it your deal, your deal to know me more intimately than anyone else.”

Angelica’s eyes widened with awe before relaxing into an expression like adoration. “You're a sap and I love you.”

“I love you too, angel.” Maria brushed a stray curl out of her eyes. “But really. You're one of the only people who actually made it their business to care about me. Even when I couldn't care for myself.”

They stood in silence for a second, just holding each other. In that moment, Maria knew that she would take all the pain, all the darkness, all the drinking and hookups, if it meant she got to meet Angelica. Their second of peace was broken when the music’s tempo increased and everyone else cheered. They were all dancing away, and she wanted to join them.

She reached out to Angelica, guiding her to the dance floor with a grin. Maria knew it was all fun and games until things got real, but all she wanted to do was relax and celebrate for a night. And after all, this was kind of similar to how she met Angelica, so what was the worst that could happen?

“We don't wanna go home,” Maria said, giggling when Angelica took control of their dance, spinning Maria around.

“Then you'd better dance for us.” This time, Angelica pulled Maria closer, linking their hands together. How was it that only a year ago, they were just fucked up people looking to have some fun? Maria got momentarily lost in her thoughts, but Angelica pulled her out of them.

“How’re you holding on?”

Maria laughed, letting them melt into the beat. Everything was glowing in shades of violet and pink, and she had never felt so alive. “I don't know tomorrow,” she replied truthfully. “Or if it'll even come or not.”

Angelica’s face quickly changed from thoughtful to devious. She grabbed at Maria’s hips and pulled her closer until their bodies were pressed flush together.  “In that case…” she rocked her hips up against Maria’s and try muffled the sound they made with each other's lips. “I promise for life you can brag about tonight.” They kissed again, and again, until Angelica’s lips were smeared with red lipstick and they are both blushing, bodies hidden by the smoke and strobe lights.

Maria knew Reynolds wouldn't save the night for her. Or if he did, it would leave her feeling worse than ever before. The random girls she used to go home with would never save the night for her. And Angelica wouldn't save the night for Maria either, because she would also be saving the morning, and all the mornings after that.

Maria looked at Angelica and saw so much love reflected in her eyes. “I'm not ever gonna—”


 

“—go home?” Thomas and Alexander pulled themselves away from the dancing crowd, breathless and joyful.

“I told you before, I'm fine.” Alexander leaned against the wall. “Although I really wouldn't mind a drink…”

Alexander.”

“No booze, I promise.” He smiled sweetly, pecked Thomas on the cheek. “Would you mind going to get us something?”

Thomas rolled his eyes but obliged, leaving Alexander alone. For a while, he watched people come and go, nothing of interest happening. That is, until a tap on his shoulder startled him out of his thoughts. When he turned, he did not find Thomas, but instead a woman with long brown hair and a coy smile.

“Catherine, but my friends call me Kitty.” Her eyes danced with mirth, something in her movements setting off warning bells in Alexander’s mind.

“I'm Alex. Alexander,” he said, not quite knowing what to do. He prayed for Thomas to come back fast and save him from this awkwardness.

Kitty trailed her fingers along his arm, leaning in close to whisper to him. “Hey, you got drugs? I just need a pick-me-up. It's only for tonight, don't worry. I won't tell anyone I was with you.”

Alexander was sharply reminded of how he acted towards Thomas, so long ago. Kitty was like a fragment of the past, coming back to haunt him. He pulled away, stepping to the right so that they were a fair distance apart. She looked almost disappointed.

Alexander chuckled. “Yeah, it’s good stuff, but I’m resisting it now. You can take it if you want, though.”

Kitty bit her lip slightly, cocked her head. “And what about you?”

Alexander hesitated for a fraction of a second. “I think I've fallen out of my feelings.”

It was only when she left and he relaxed back against the wall that Alexander realized he spoke the truth. Against all odds, he fell out of his feelings for drugs, was freed from his dependency. Alexander grinned, resisted the urge to shout. Although he knew a full recovery would be impossible, he had said no. Right then, he had declined. And that small thing was worth all the fevers and the cursing and the appointments at the clinic.

Thomas came back, and Alexander took the fizzy, limey drink from him. They looked out at the crowd. Alexander took the hand that wasn't holding his drink and linked it with Thomas's.

—we don't wanna go home—better dance for us—

“Hey, Thomas?”

“Hm?”

Alexander took a deep breath, trying to figure out what to say. His short conversation with Kitty as given him a lot to think about. “I think I've finally broken the cycle. Freed myself from my mistakes and all that.”

—you're fucked but, oh, you’re so fun—how you holding on—

Thomas laughed, but he sounded startled. “Where is all this coming from?”

Alexander figured this wasn't the best time to talk about a random woman trying to hook up with him. “I'll tell you later. But that's not the point. The point is that it won't be easy for us, not that it ever had been.” Alexander sighed, combed a hand through his hair, took a large sip of his drink. “Look. What I'm trying to say is I might never be completely normal.”

—I don’t know tomorrow—if it comes or not—

Thomas leaned down to press a kiss to Alexander's lips. “I don't want normal. I want you.”

—but I promise for life you can brag 'bout tonight—


 

Thomas and Alexander aren't saving the nights for them, they're saving the mornings for each other

Maria and Angelica aren't saving the nights for them, they're saving the mornings for each other

Aaron and Theodosia aren't saving the nights for them, they're saving the mornings for each other.

And none of them wanted to go home


 

Gradually, the crowd began to trickle outside. Eliza came back over to Maria and Angelica, looking much happier than she had been for a while. They walked out into the midnight air. Maria breathed in deeply, freed from her dependencies. She had won against Reynolds in court, she had stepped away from her family, she had found happiness. There was no point in relying on alcohol and one night stands, not when Maria had so much more to wake up for.  

—hey, you got drugs?—just need a pick-me-up only for tonight—don't tell anyone I was with ya—

The air was surprisingly cool, and Angelica moved closer to Maria, until their arms were pressed together. Maria’s knee-jerk instinct was to jump away, avoid connection, avoid attachments, avoid emotion. She would always feel the temptation to run away, but with Angelica by her side, she could resist it.

—yeah it’s good stuff but I’m resisting now—take it if you want—

When Maria leaned over and kissed Angelica, she not only fell out of her feelings, but fell into her new ones.


 

Thomas followed the mass of people outside for the conclusion of the reception, Alexander slipping away for a few minutes to say hello to Gilbert and Hercules. As he stood outside, the wind crisp as it messed with his hair, Thomas allowed himself s moment of peace. He felt alive, no longer bound to his fear of rejection. The urge to hide himself away, to distance himself from Alexander before they ended up hurt was still there, in the darkest parts of Thomas’s heart. But just like he let go of his drug habit, he could let go of his facade.

—hey, you got drugs?—just need a pick-me-up only for tonight—don't tell anyone I was with ya—

Coming out to his sister, telling Alexander the truth, it was all the start of a new beginning. Thomas jumped when Alexander came up behind him, murmuring a quick ‘hey.’

—yeah it’s good stuff but I’m resisting now—take it if you want—

When Thomas kissed Alexander, unafraid of what people might think, he could feel himself falling out of his old feelings and into his new ones.


 

Alexander made his way back outside, a smile on his lips after the short conversation with his old friends. He was still left shaken after his encounter with Kitty. It had made him rethink his recovery, helped him realize that maybe he was doing much better than he initially thought. He felt happy, especially when he saw Thomas standing outside. Even as a faint memory of John whispered to him to drown his worries with highs. Although he would always grieve for John, there was so much more than his self-imposed cycle.

—hey, you got drugs?—just need a pick-me-up only for tonight—don't tell anyone I was with ya—

But Alexander resisted, he always would. He let John drift away into the midnight sky. Thomas reached out for Alexander. They found each other under the starlight, surrounded by people.

—yeah it’s good stuff but I’m resisting now—take it if you want—

When Alexander kissed Thomas back, he fell out of his feelings and into new ones.


 

Everyone stood outside, a cheer building up and spilling from their lips when fireworks began to go off, brilliant sparks against a dark blue backdrop. They all have their pain, which they try to mask with some coping mechanism or another. And they all have to try their best to resist, to face their feelings head-on and free their minds to be the best version of themselves.

Theodosia threw her bouquet, white roses, over her shoulder and it landed neatly in Angelica’s hand, the one that wasn't linked with Maria’s. A peal of laughter resonated through the crowd, and those who kissed their loved ones did so with lips that were tinged blue from the cold.

Everyone was falling out of their feelings. Or maybe, judging from the way they were looking at each other, just falling.