Iggy sighs, his irritation setting in as he rolls over and realizes it's three in the morning. This is the problem with living in a house where everyone had different schedules and no matter how much he wants to, he knows that stabbing whoever is making the racket in the kitchen right now is not really a viable option. So instead he pulls on his tracksuit pants that happen to be lying next to his bed and wanders towards the noise, because there's no way he's getting back to sleep. Life experiences have made him a light sleeper.
As it turns out the noise is coming from Mickey, who is drinking a can of beer and stabbing the counter top with a steak knife.
“Why the fuck aren't you asleep?” Iggy asks cautiously. Ever since Ian's being in the hospital Mickey's been pretty easy to set off.
“Why aren't you?” Mickey snaps. There it is Iggy thinks bitterly, he didn't sign on to deal with this crap. It shouldn't be his problem, but he can't bring himself to leave, to abandon the people he loves, maybe it's because he's stubborn.
“cause you're loud dip shit” he points out rather forcefully. Mickey stops stabbing and puts the knife down. He eyes Iggy up and down wearily.
“yeah okay, sorry” Mickey tells him.
“What's with the knife, you gonna stab someone?” Iggy laughs, the laughter doesn't last long though because the look that flashes across Mickey's face makes Iggy's chest feel tight. “What's? Mickey what's the matter?” he asks his younger brother. Mickey doesn't answer him and goes back to playing with the knife.” Iggy's mind flashes with a mix of anger and protectiveness “GIVE ME THAT FUCKING KNIFE MICK” he bursts out. He's surprised no one else has come to find out what's going on.
“why should I?” Mickey mutters, he's talking to himself at this point. Iggy grits his teeth and resists the urge to throw up his hands in defeat.
“Because I don't want to deal with your fucking shit” Iggy growls, he pulls open the fridge to grab his own beer.
“Oh you don't want to deal with my shit?” Mickey scoffs. “Why don't you just leave then? You've never been around before.” He continues. Iggy stares at him in disbelief.
“I was, I tried okay, but you know... Jobs for Terry and juvie...jail, hooking up with girls...” Iggy trails off. He flicks his tongue across his lips trying to find the right words for what he wants to say. “Would you leave Ian?” Iggy questions softly.
“Of course not” Mickey says fiercely. There's a silent I love him attached to that but Mickey is still kind of emotionally retarded. It's a Milkovich family trait, they drink too much, smoke too much, swear too much and care too much. None of them admit to that last one in a million years though.
“Why not?” Iggy prompts, he's trying to get a point across.
“Cause he's fucking family, he's important and I'm never going to bloody abandon him” Mickey hisses out, his defensiveness clear in his tone. Iggy raises his eyebrows.
“Yeah exactly. Ian's family, you're family, I ain't going fucking nowhere. You guys and Mandy and Lana and what's the...fucking...Nika? You guys piss me off, the house is always loud. Yev has a set of lungs, you all have sex at the top of your lungs. But I am never fucking walking out, you'll just have to drag me out kicking and screaming instead. I stay, cause someone's gotta be sane in this shit storm” Iggy rants. Mickey cracks a small smile.
“Ig, you're dreaming if you think you're sane” Mickey jokes lightly.
“We cool?” Iggy asks.
“Yeah we're cool, I'm gonna go back to bed” Mickey informs him.
“Awesome cause I gotta get up for work in a few hours” Iggy says and they both trail off towards their bedrooms.
It's a couple of days later when Fiona Gallagher's name flashes up on Iggy's phone.
“Oh hey Fi” He greets cheerfully. The two of them have been starting to talk more since it's become abundantly clear that the Gallagher's and the Milkovich's were all going to be permanently thrown together in this screwed up universe.
“Hey Iggy” She greets back, she sounds happy but there's an underlying businesslike tone to her voice that gets his attention “Ian's getting released early, so we're going to pick him up tomorrow. Wanna round up anyone from your household that wants to see him we're having a barbecue that night for dinner” she tell him.
“Yeah sure thing, see you then” He tells her and hangs up the phone.
“Yo Fuckheads, Everyone in the lounge room now” He yells out. People trickle in from various areas of the house.
“What's with all the yelling, I was having a good time” Kenyatta laughs and Iggy actually reaches for his open toolbox next to the couch. He really doesn't like the guy.
“We're having family dinner at the Gallagher's tomorrow” He informs the clan.
“How come?” Mickey asks hopefully and Iggy realises he has no idea Ian's getting out early.
“It's not family dinner, those cunts aren't fucking family” Kenyatta interjects and Iggy loses his patience. His hand wraps around a wrench tightly.
“Correction, you ain't fucking family” he says coldly and swings the wrench. It connects with Kenyatta's knee with a sickening yet satisfying crack and the man begins to scream. Iggy ignores him, in fact other than a half-concerned glance from Mandy no one seems to give a shit.
“Ian, who is family, is getting home early. So we're going” Iggy says his tone dripping with authority.
“Orange boy is coming home?” Svetlana reiterates a grin coming over her face. “this is great news! Miss him, he good.” She says happily, bouncing Yevgeny up and down in her arms. “now he's all better he can maybe help with baby again” she continues softly, obviously contemplating if it's actually a good idea.
“You just want a glorified babysitter” Mickey scoffs and the two begin to banter with occasional input from Mandy and Nika. Iggy ignores them however and crouches down next to Kenyatta.
“Can you walk?” He asks gently and Kenyatta shoots him a look of disdain.
“Yeah, I guess” Kenyatta pushes out.
“Good, you have an hour to get the fuck out of my house” Iggy informs him. Kenyatta looks like he's going to argue for a moment but he obviously thinks better of it because he stands up and limps towards Mandy's room.
The next evening they make their way to the Gallagher house. The nervousness and excitement hanging around them like a distinct electrical current. They don't talk on the way so the only noticeable noise is a couple of passing cars and Yevgeny fussing in Mandy's arms. Mickey pushes the gate open when the get there and immediately makes his way to his boyfriend, who is leaning against the stairs at the side of the house. The two of them stare at each other before Ian grabs him by the the hand and drags him quietly into the house. Iggy spots Fiona and walks over to her. He pulls her into a quick hug.
“Guess the guest of honor is gonna be busy for a while” Iggy states, nodding towards the door that the boys just went through.
“Let him, Mickey's all he talked about on the drive home” Fiona tells him as she passes him a sausage in bread from the barbecue. “Anything to report?” She continues. Iggy bites into the sausage and thinks for a moment.
“Kicked Kenyatta out, pretty sure I broke his fucking knee” He informs her and she nods. Fiona never had much to do with the guy but she knew he was bad news.
“Anything about Terry?” Fiona asks him, pushing him towards what she actually wants to know about.
“Nothing much, he tried to recruit Colin into coming over and shooting up the house. Said Col was the only real son he had.” Iggy lets her know
“What'd Colin say?” Fiona queries
“Well let's put it this way, I don't think Terry counts him as family any more” Iggy lets a reassuring smile plaster his face. “Don't worry about Terry Fi, We got enough people to keep our boys covered and there really isn't enough people that are willing to do my walking sperm donor any favours. Even Uncle Ronnie's 'bout bloody ready to kick him to the curb” He says finishing off his food and reaching down to check the cooler by Fiona's feet for beer. He finds one and clicks it open, handing it to her before getting one for himself.
“Yeah but I do worry about him Viggo.” She says softly. He leans forward toward her
“Ya know it kind of turns me on when you say my name” He says playfully before straightening back up. “Seriously Fiona, It'll be okay. I promise, at the very least forget about it tonight. Go throw on some music and dance with Vee or some shit” He tells her before wandering off to chat to Kev.
The night continues into the small hours, everyone has too much to drink and they dance wildly, with no inhibitions. When sleep finally starts to wash over them no one bothers to make their way upstairs to the bedrooms, they instead just pack into the lounge room and collapse in a mess on the floor. People using each other as pillows and for warmth. Not that it was a very cold night to begin with. For the first time in a while it actually felt like everything was going to be okay. Not just for a few days but forever. Deep down everyone knew this wasn't true but they desperately clung to that feeling as they succumbed to dreams one by one.