Of things to be grateful for, the fact that Spot’s looks couldn’t actually kill was very high up on Jack’s list. If the hypothetically deadly glares had any weight behind them, he knew that Davey would have been a goner by the time he had stepped into his apartment.
Spot came stumbling in after Race, groggily rubbing the sleep out of his eyes. “I’ll kick yer ass, Kelly, swear on me mother’s gra-” (The gaelic accent tended to rear it’s Irish head whenever the boy was especially tired) Just as his boyfriend had been taken aback, Spot stopped in the middle of the hallway behind Race. His gaping stare was illuminated by the light seemingly coming from the inside of Davey, making him glow in a forbidding way.
Jack, tired of the evil supervillain act, flicked the living room light on and sat down on the couch. “I found him crying in an alley.”
This caused Davey to break, sputtering out excuses and suddenly the electricity crackling up and down his body lessened. “Sorry,” Spot cut him off. “Who the hell is yer boy?”
“My name is David Jacobs, and I am not his boy.” Jack scoffed from his comfortable position on the couch.
“You’re mine enough. I’m not the one wearing handcuffs.”
“I could have killed you, Jack, do not start- ”
“Who was holding a knife to your throat?”
“Who drives a shitty blue Honda?”
“Are you seriously making fun of my car right now? You’re my hostage!”
“Which is totally illegal in the state of New York, by the way!”
“So is robbery, dumbass-”
Clearing his throat, Race raised an eyebrow. His facial expressions betrayed the humor he felt in the situation, watching his best friend bicker with the boy who had nearly killed him on a number of occasions. “Babe, if you haven’t caught on already, this is Override.”
Spot had not caught on because of the exhaustion, but these words roared his brain to life. “You’re Override?” Race placed a gentle hand on his arm, reminding him that this was still an apartment building at three in the morning. “The puny little wimp who hides behind clouds?”
Since Davey was now available to ask questions and figure out his dastardly plans, Jack was relieved that Spot’s looks could not kill. His fists, however, curling together, were a different story, and possibly just as lethal. “I do not hide behind clouds, thank you very much.” Davey sniffed. “The clouds are under my control. And it’s really an emphasis on lightning.” Jack rolled his eyes, tired of listening to the boy with the egotistical complex speak. He got to his feet and took Davey by the shoulders, steering him towards his bedroom. “Where are you taking me?” He questioned, struggling against the handcuffs. Why didn’t I get super strength instead? What the hell is energy going to do for me? “You have to let me go!”
“Think of this as penance for the whole throwing me into a rosebush thing, asshole. You’re staying with us.”
“Where are we going to keep him?” Race questioned, walking into the kitchen for paper towels. The coffee was staining the carpet.
Metal cuffs. Green wiring. ...Some room for escape. “Materialize.” Before anyone could react, Jack cuffed one of his wrists to the chain connecting Davey’s hands. “Only I can make a key for these, and they’re resistant to your...” The gesture with his free hand was vague, waving at the glow still emitting from the body. “Whole thing. Hope you’re comfortable sharing a twin bed.”
There were flaws in this plan, as there are in any half-baked ideas. The first was getting zapped awake by Davey, stating that he had an eight o’clock class where attendance was mandatory. Next was finding out a schedule for which the boys called ‘Davey Duty,’ where they each went to his classes with him to make sure that he didn’t run at the first chance he had. Last, and possibly the hardest roadblock of them all, was getting the boy to talk to them.
“I’ll talk to you about literally anything else, but not my powers. I already told Jack everything.” Spot crossed his arms, irritated at the fact that they had held him in the apartment for almost two weeks and were getting positively nowhere. Soon, he was going to resort to making Davey stick his fingers in electrical sockets to see what happens, but Jack had called it ‘inhumane’ and ‘against our code,’ whatever the hell that meant. Race had been totally on Spot’s side.
Jack and Davey couldn’t be in a room without picking a fight with one another, arguing about the lack of information Davey was giving over, or the fact that Jack had warmed up soup that Davey didn’t like the smell of. They found ways to push each other’s buttons until the other had to leave the room, hands flung in the air, frustrated. When they weren’t together, however, Spot and Race noticed the change in tone when the other boy was brought up. Davey, on more than one occasion, had praised Jack, “He’s good at what he does. There isn’t a hero I’d give the time of day that isn’t him.” On the other hand, Jack stopped Spot from conducting his experiments on the boy, and the couple knew exactly what that meant. If Jack wasn’t up for wacky tests on evil subjects, it could only mean one thing.
“So r’we gonna talk about you and Kelly?” Spot questioned, casually leaning back in his chair. If he couldn’t do his research, he might as well have a little fun with it.
“I have no idea what you’re talking about.” Davey answered, his tone final. He didn’t want to talk about Jack, the idiot in the latex rainbow suit who had caught him. Especially not since the fighting had been growing worse between them, the air in a room changing immediately the second they were both inside of it. Davey would be the first to admit that yes, he had done some terrible things to him in the past, but he didn’t know Jack was inside of the suit! Like, couldn’t he get over it already?
It made his insides burn that Jack wouldn’t forgive him for his past actions. He would never understand that he did everything for his family, his brother and sister who worked so hard, his parents who bleed themselves dry for their children. Les was going through a rough patch and he shouldn’t have been punished for this. What was the point of having magical superpowers if you couldn’t use them to saving your own fucking family? The added financial stress began to make his head ache with worry. The next pay period for school was over in four days, and he had to pay both him and his brother’s tuition statements.
There was no point in asking Jack to go home, even if for a moment, to explain to his parents what might happen. They would just fight and Davey would leave feeling worse than before. He didn’t want to think about the implications of these feelings, the ones he hadn’t felt since Stanley Eidelman wanted to be his lab partner junior year of high school. Stanley wasn’t just a lab partner in the end, but they ended things the same way Davey was trying to end things with Jack: fighting constantly. But that was ridiculous to say, because they were not anything, not lab partners, certainly not boyf- No. They were captor and captive. Tormentor and hero. Good and evil.
“I won’t talk to anyone but Jack.” He crossed his arms to signify that he was done and he wouldn’t speak to Spot anymore.
“Thas what I thought you’d say, Sparky.” The smirk on Spot’s face was enough punishment for Davey’s lifetime.
A knock on the door rang through the room, startling Davey out of his quiet thoughts. “Heard you wanted to speak ta me?” Jack stood at the doorframe.
“You don’t have to knock if you’re the one keeping it locked,” Davey spit at him.
“Don’t get me started today, Jacobs. You’s the one who kept disagreeing the whole time we was talkin’ about Jane Austen and makin’ everyone feel weird.”
Davey huffed loudly, turning to face the wall. “It’s not about that, even though you were wrong. She’s a great example of female literature.”
He entered the room, sitting on his bed. “She believes too much in’er written men, but whatever.” It was strange, seeing his room inhabited by someone else. There were more textbooks on the desk, an extra pair of shoes by the door, the laundry basket piled up faster. He couldn’t find himself to be annoyed by the new additions, however, and he couldn’t figure out why. ( You know the reason, his brain nagged at him.) “What’s it about then?”
“Tuition is due on Friday.” There was no point in beating around the bush. Everyone in that apartment knew the motive behind Override’s evil acts of theft, and had watched as Davey Jacobs tried desperately to fix his family. “If I can’t pay it on time, I swear I’ll kill you.”
Davey didn’t turn around to face him, and Jack was glad for that. The crestfallen look that had shadowed over his face for a split second was just a sign of weakness. The steely tone of Davey’s voice cut him as he threatened, “I’ll drop you in another lake and make sure you never come back up.”
“All this for school?” Jack questioned, his tone pleading.
“You don’t understand!” Davey roared, turning around in his chair.
Backing up, growing closer to the doorway, Jack held out his hands. “You’re right. But Davey, please. Make me get it. Let me help you.”
The words he was prepared to throw like bolts of lightning died in his throat at Jack’s soft tone. They reminded him of the days when his father asked him to help with bills, his barely educated mind not understanding what was due when. Or how his mother would look at him and Sarah at the grocer’s till, waiting for them to translate what was expected of her into Hebrew so she could understand. Make me get it.
“You won’t get it. You’ll never understand.” There was nothing Davey wanted to do more than shoulder his way past Jack and storm out of the room, but he was trapped there. Trapped in this room, trapped by his money, trapped by his own feelings.
There was a soft click as the door shut and locked behind him.
He should’ve known the moment there wasn’t an answer to the knock on his door. Assuming Davey was asleep, Jack settled to try later in the day, but no one answered then, too. In a panic he flung open the door, finding an empty room with the window curtain fluttering in the breeze. The broken panes of glass littered the grass beneath it, with no body or blood to be found. Jack breathed a deep sigh of relief, Davey was still alive, he could still be rescued.
Not that he’d call being held captive rescue. More like rehabilitation.
It wasn’t difficult to find him, he was being sporadic with his movements and weather patterns. Race tracked him within thirty seconds, giving Jack an address to a park that wasn’t too far away, about a five minute drive if Jack really tried to ignore speed limit laws. (Which he did normally.) Throwing on his suit and leaping into his car, Jack careened down roadways until he pulled up next to Larkin Park.
Immediately he knew that Davey was still here, the air was charged with energy and the clouds swirled around overhead angrily. He felt damp, like it had just finished raining but his socks were wet, so the discomfort lingered but the aerial magic was gone. “Davey?” Jack called out, the name echoing in the wind. Race hissed at him to be quiet, Davey could be in an unstable state and Jack wanted to have the upper hand in the situation.
After some rooting around in the trees, Jack came across Davey sitting quietly on the floor. He was surrounded by trees, a carpet of grass underneath him, and looked almost peaceful if it were not for the pile of money sitting in front of him. The image stopped Jack cold, and Race asked if he was okay, his heart rate was fluctuating, did anything happen? Instead of answering him, Jack slowly walked toward Davey. The wind whistled in his ears, hard and fast.
“Davey?” At the sound, the boy turned around in shock. The speed of the wind picked up, making Jack shiver with terror. He could feel the electricity in the air, he could taste it on the currents.
“I told you, Jack.” His voice was low. “I told you I would do anything for my family.”
“But you didn’t! You never said it was about them! It was always about school!”
His laughter was maniacal and Jack swore his heart stopped beating for a moment. This was not the boy who he had been teasing for weeks, bickering about classic literature and which poptart is the best. This was another man entirely. “You’re a fool, Jack. It’s always been about my family. My parents worked so hard to get here. My sister is a genius, but they won’t see her as anything but the coffee girl. My brother wants so much but I can’t give it to him!” Thunder rolled across the sky to mask the quiver in his voice on the last words.
“I’ll do anything for them.”
“It’s a waste to not use what I have for them.”
“I could do anything for you too, you know.”
Slick to the tou- What?
The thought of the throwing knife abandoned itself in his mind as he thought about the sentence Davey had just said, the quiet tones of embarrassment evident. I could do anything for you too, you know. Just as he was about to respond, a gust of particularly strong wind blew the words right out of him and took the pile of cash with it. Money fluttered around them in different directions as Davey howled, desperately grabbing at the air. The swirling eye of the storm gathered most of it and left the boy hunched over on his knees.
“Davey,” Jack moved to touch his shoulder, thinking the storm had finally passed.
“No!” He howled, shooting a bolt of lighting back at Jack. He ducked in just enough time, but the energy hit the tree behind them and erupted into flames. The dark, grey light of the storm above was now terrifyingly mixed with the orange glow of the fire, illuminating the tears running down Davey’s face. Jack didn’t hesitate this time.
Grey. Steel. Slick to the touch. “Materialize,” he whispered, the sound barely audible against the bouts of thunder. He flicked the knife with precision, landing it into Davey’s leg and wincing at the scream of pain.
He rushed to Davey and hunched over him with care, tears running down his own face, and Jack finally looked into Davey’s eyes. He was defeated. He was tired. Jack was not. “Jack.” Davey tried to speak, but it came out in more of a croak. “I’m sorry.”
The fire roared behind them, the lighting cracked across the sky, but Jack held Davey in his arms. “Yea, Dave. I got you.”