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Recording the album coincides with a looming deadline at Jamia's job. She keeps having to work overtime, Frank is spending nearly every waking moment in the studio: to make it worse, Jamia has to leave for work around seven, and it's a good day when Frank can make it home before one AM.

They get about five minutes together a day. They make it work.

Jamia's in bed already when Frank gets home. The house is dark other than the glow of her reading lamp, shining under the bedroom door. It calls to Frank like a beacon.

He makes himself go shower first, knowing he'll sleep better if he does and that if he gets in bed now he won't get out of it till morning. He's stupidly happy to see the light still on when he gets out.

Jamia is half asleep, her face mashed against the book she's reading, but she turns and smiles when Frank gets in the room. "Hey, babe." She slurs her speech a little. "Thought I heard you c'min."

It's getting cold, but not cold enough to heat the house up yet. Frank crawls under the covers as fast as he can, clinging to Jamia, shamelessly stealing her body heat. "Shouldn't you be asleep already?" He drops a kiss on the top of her head.

Jamia grumbles something barely audible and crawls even closer, slinging a leg over Frank's thigh. She's practically asleep by the time she stops moving.

Frank pets her hair. "I know, sweetheart," he whispers. He also sleeps like shit when she's not in bed with him.

The reading lamp stays lit till morning. Frank doesn't want to risk waking Jamia up by moving to turn it off.

~~

People get weird when they hear Frank got engaged right out of high school. Real unsubtle, too, asking him how old his kid is, then goggling when Frank says he doesn't have any yet.

The worst ones are old folk. Frank would've expected to get more leering comments from the guys he works with, the roadies and the techs and the other musicians, but they mostly just nod seriously, maybe say something about how they wish they had something nice and steady to call their own before aggressively flirting with the waitress.

No, instead he gets dudes his mom's age winking while saying shit like, "Well, marriage never stopped anyone determined, right?" Gross.

Pretty much everyone, though, spares him these little looks of sympathy, like they're sorry for the lack of variety in his dick's diet. It's actually a lot like the looks Frank gets from meat eaters when he explains he's vegan. Makes him want to give the same baffled, "But why would I want to?" response.

Frank doesn't eat dead things and he doesn't stick his dick in anyone he doesn't love, and he doesn't understand why anyone would feel sorry for him for that.

~~

One good thing Frank can say about his band is that they never gave him shit about either his marriage or his diet.

They give him shit about plenty of other stuff, sure, but he gives it right back. Not like it's hard: once you get past the kicking guitar riffs and the dramatic makeup, Frank's band is a bunch of nerds.

Seriously. When Frank walks into the studio, Ray's reading a guitar magazine with an expression other people reserve for porn, Bob's halfway buried under one of the consoles and muttering something about monster cables, conductivity and analog signals, and Gerard and Mikey are arguing loudly about who's getting to read the new X-Men issue first.

The answer to that would be Frank, who fights dirty, and never claimed he wasn't a nerd, himself. There's a reason they have video footage of him stuffed into a locker.

It appears that Gerard is the one currently in possession of the comic. Frank considers tackling him, but that might result in the comic being damaged. He must plan this carefully.

So, instead, he waits for Gerard to sit down before clambering into his lap and sticking his tongue into Gerard’s ear, simultaneously worming his cold hands under Gerard’s shirt. As predicted, Gerard squacks and drops the comic. “Frankie! What the fuck!”

“Finders keepers,” Frank says, quickly picking the comic up. He makes himself comfortable in Gerard’s lap and opens it to the first page. “Ooh, this one’s about Marrow! Rocking.”

“This is ours,” Mikey says mildly.

“Not anymore.” Frank licks his finger and turns the page.

Mikey makes a grossed out noise. Like he has room to speak: unlike some people in the room, Frank showers without anyone putting a gun to his head. Gerard says, “Hey, I wasn’t done reading that yet!”

Bob climbs out from under the soundboard, wiping dust from his face. “For fuck’s sake, can’t you assholes buy your own fucking comics?”

Mikey and Frank look at each other, but it’s Gerard who says, “Nope,” right along with him.

“I’ll buy you another one if you’ll shut up about it,” Bob says desperately.

Gerard gives Bob a haughty look. “It’s the principle of the thing.”

Frank would prod Bob if he were close enough, but that would mean moving. “See? Principle. Now let me get back to the story.”

Bob throws his hands up. “Are we going to record today, or are you going to keep reading about Kitty Ride or whatever the fuck she’s called?”

Ray perks up in his seat. “Kitty Pryde? What did I miss?”

Bob groans something unintelligible and disappears back under the console. There’s a sound like him hitting his head against something. Mikey calls out, “Try not to give yourself brain damage. Again.”

There’s another thud, and then silence.

Frank squirms. They really should get playing, but he’s comfy. Gerard’s arms have settled around on his hips, Gerard’s chin on his shoulder, which should be sharp and uncomfortable but just feels kind of right.

Gerard kisses him on the cheek and pats his thigh. “Come on. Let’s rock and roll.”

With some regret, Frank gives up his perch in favor of lumbering into the booth to lay his tracks. He’s still got the comic clutched in his hands, though. Like hell is he giving it up now.

~~

Jamia’s already asleep that night when he gets home, and Frank’s torn between wanting to wake her up and wanting to let her have her rest, between being glad to be home and wishing he’d taken Gerard and Mikey up on their offer of midnight movie marathon. Not like Jamia’d miss him in her sleep.

Then she rolls over with a discontented little murmur, until her forehead touches his shoulder and she quiets, smiling faintly. She’s so fucking gorgeous - she’s got red marks on her face from creases in the sheets and her hair is a mess, but there’s nobody Frank would rather look at.

He’d just rather look at her awake, if that were an option.

With a start, Frank realizes he might actually be lonely. It’s a hell of an achievement, given that he spends every waking hour surrounded by people, to the point where he would cheerfully sell his soul for two hours alone with a comic book or maybe a dumb first-person shooter. If he were spending this time with anyone but his band, probably there’d be blood on the walls already.

Huh. That’s actually a pretty cool mental image. Frank makes a mental note to pitch it as a video idea to the guys.

He brushes a kiss over Jamia’s cheek, careful. She snuffles and mumbles in her sleep, crowding closer. It’s a little better like that.

~~

The first thing Gerard says, when he sees Frank at the studio the next day, is, “Are you okay?” Then he puts his wrist to Frank’s forehead, checking his temp.

So maybe Frank hasn’t slept. That’s no reason for Gerard to transform into his mom, and he says so.

“I just don’t want you to come down with anything,” Gerard says, looking so anxious that Frank caves.

For the rest of the day he lets Gerard flutter around him, bringing him tea and tissues and his hoody when he leaves it on the chair. Frank lets it be, shamelessly burrowing his hands under Gerard’s shirt, relishing Gerard’s startled yelp.

“You realize we don’t have fans watching us,” Mikey says at one point.

Gerard frowns at him. “Are you saying I’m emoting too much?”

“He means maybe you should stop groping your work husband and get to working,” says Rob, their producer.

Frank takes the hint, albeit regretfully, moving away from Gerard.

Gerard appears to still be confused. “I can’t be his husband. He has a wife already.”

Chris, one of the techs, pipes up. “No no, work husband. Totally different. Like, this person you work with and you’re physically inappropriate with and they bring you coffee and shit.”

Gerard gives this consideration. “I don’t know. I mean, I believe in the sanctity of marriage.”

“Of work marriage,” Frank says, trying to be helpful.

Gerard flaps his hands. “See, that just has all sorts of capitalistic overtones and I’m not actually comfortable with that. Like, why is the work sphere so integral to our lives that we can have an entirely separate marriage in it? What does that say about being alienated from our own domestic sphere?”

Frank grins at him. “No, see, this is better - we’re reclaiming the capitalistic space back for human relationships! We’re making it all about love, rather than profit.”

Bob stares at both of them. “Do either of you actually understand what you’re saying? Or do you just like the sound of your own voices and two-dollar words?”

Mikey gives Frank a microscopic shrug. Which is nice, for solidarity’s sake. Ray’s in the corner, tuning a guitar and laughing quietly: maybe at them, maybe at something he just thought about or remembered.

Fuck, but Frank loves his band. He grins at Bob, takes a step backwards, and would have made a running leap at him if Bob - wise to Frank’s ways - hasn’t put a hand on the top of Frank’s head to keep him grounded.

“I hate this band,” Bob informs them.

“You love us,” Frank counters, and bites Bob’s wrist.

~~

“I have a work husband,” Frank tells Jamia that evening. Rob let them take a half-day off, muttering something about goofball idiots who can’t focus on the actual music. Frank elected to ignore the muttering in favor of running home as fast as he could, hoping to find Jamia still awake.

She was, and they decided to celebrate this rare occurence by having an actual cooked meal. Frank’s making pasta sauce and Jamia’s ripping lettuce for a salad, and he actually gets to hear her say complete sentences that don’t fade into snores. It’s awesome

“Oh?” Jamia says. “Is it Gerard?”

“Yep.” He tastes the sauce, makes a considering noise, and points the spoon at Jamia. “Whaddaya say, more pepper?”

“Always more pepper,” she says promptly.

Frank wrinkles his nose. Right, he forgot who he was asking. “I bet Gerard wouldn’t always make me add extra pepper.”

She opens the utensil drawer, gets out a spatula, smacks him with it, and puts it back in place. “I’m not letting you have a work husband if you pit him and me against one another. Solidarity, motherfucker.”

“You can’t call me that,” Frank says, aghast. “I didn’t even get you pregnant yet.”

There’s a twinkle in her eye, but he knows from experience it’s about one ill-placed word from turning into a flame of terrifying fury. “Don’t be an asshole and I won’t call you names, Frankie.”

He lowers the fire and turns to her, sliding his hands over her hips and nuzzling her neck. “Do you mind it?”

She shudders when he kisses behind her ear, then laughs. “Mind what? Your shitty schedule? Your work husband?”

“Either,” Frank says. “Both. If it bugs you I won’t let people call us that.”

Jamia snorts. “And you’ll also stop climbing your bandmates like a monkey?” She lays her hand over his when he stiffens, petting him. “I’m just teasing, baby. You know I don’t mind.”

“You don’t? For sure?” Frank has no idea why he’s even still talking. Maybe those who said he has no self-preservation instincts were right.

“For sure.” She raises his palm to her lips and kisses it, lingering. “Now get cooking. We have an evening together, I don’t want to spend it on insecurity crises.”

Frank grins, even though he knows she can’t see it. “Yes, ma’am.”

~~

The thought stays with him, though. As he tries to con piggyback rides out of Bob (and fails), as he tries to put shit in Ray's hair without Ray noticing (with moderate success). Frank's a social creature, and tactile as all fuck. He's not getting enough cuddles at home, through no fault of his or Jamia, so now he's making up for the lack.

"Pet me, motherfucker," Frank says, pushing up under Gerard's hand. Gerard shoves him off. "Hey, not fair! This is neglect of your marital duties!"

"Marriage doesn't mean you have a right to somebody's body, Frankie," Gerard says, disapproving. "No means no, even if you're married."

Frank grins gleefully and gets right back under Gerard's arm. "So you admit we're married?"

Gerard probably doesn't even notice he's playing with Frank's hair. Desensitization is the best, fuck yeah: get in people's personal space, little by little, so they end up providing you with cuddles without even realizing it. "I guess we can be," Gerard says. "If it's that important to you." He perks up a little. "Hey, maybe we can--"

"No," Bob and Mikey say in unison.

Gerard pouts. "You don't even know what I was going to say."

Mikey gives him a pitying, Like hell I don't, look. Bob just folds his arms over his chest and looks unimpressed.

"It's important to reaffirm group relationships," Gerard mumbles.

Ray gets out of the booth and beckons him in, though, so Frank misses the rest of what Gerard has to say about intimacy in a cold and mechanized world; when Frank finishes laying his guitar tracks to Ray's satisfaction, Gerard's busily scribbling in a notebook. Frank stops himself before poking Gerard for the rest of the rant. Mikey would probably never forgive him if he did.

Weird to realize that he actually kind of wants to hear it.

~~

As they filter out of the studio at the end of the day, Gerard hangs back, tugging Frank aside with him. Mikey gives them a look, then shrugs and walks out once Gerard communicates something at him in their secret eyebrow language.

“What,” Frank says, wary. He tries to remember whether he broke anything expensive that day, but unless you count Ray’s spirit, he can’t think of anything. Which you shouldn’t: Ray’s spirit is resilient. He just needs a good night’s sleep and the expensive hair conditioner he keeps at home and he’ll be fine.

Gerard gives him a quick look, jamming his hands in his pockets. “I was wondering,” he says. “Is everything okay with you and Jamia?”

“Huh?” Frank’s eyebrows bunch together. “I mean, we haven’t seen a lot of each other lately and that sucks. Other than that, we’re fine. Why are you asking?”

“No reason,” Gerard says. He looks away at the ceiling like he’s seeing Jesus in the cracks, or, like, some monster out of Doctor Who.

Frank glares at him until he folds.

“Just, you know if you need a hug, you just have to ask, right?” Gerard gives him such a soulful look that Frank cracks out, laughing.

“Gee,” he says, wheezing a little because, fuck, how is this guy for real? “I do not need a hug.” Then he considers. “You know what? Scratch that. Fuck yeah, I need a hug. I need all the hugs. C’mere.”

Gerard does, without stopping to think. He gives good hugs, not too macho-back-pounding, nice and solid against Frank. Frank hums and squirms happily, resting his head on Gerard’s shoulder. Gerard’s hair tickles his nose. It also needs a wash, but Frank doesn’t really mind. “Is that better?” Gerard says.

Frank smiles and kisses his cheek. “It’s great,” he says, with utter sincerity.

Gerard squeezes him. “Anytime.”

~~

Once he’s on the way home, Frank actually feels kind of guilty. Time spent hugging Gerard is less time spent with a potentially awake Jamia, and it’s not like he hasn’t spent the entire day with his band as it was.

Miraculously, Jamia’s not asleep, although just barely.

Frank slides into bed beside her, kissing her softly, sliding his hand across her stomach. “Hey,” he says, “how long till the deadline?”

She groans. “They moved it back a week, so that’s…. how long is an eternity plus one week?”

Instead of answering, he kisses her again. He draws back, and the words, “Let me go down on you,” tumble out of his mouth mostly unbidden.

“I’m tired.” Jamia bites her lower lip. She looks thoughtful, though, and her thumb is still tracing little circles around his hipbone.

“That a no?” He kisses her collarbone.

Her thigh nudges against his. “That’s a ‘Sure, if you don’t mind me falling asleep halfway through’.”

He considers. “Can I keep going once you fall asleep?”

“Sure.” He feels her shrug more than he sees it. “You’re getting off on your own, though. Don’t get me sticky.”

He laughs, already nosing his way down. “Aye aye, cap’n.”

He kisses down her belly, nuzzling the soft thatch of hair over her pussy. Loves the way she smells, shower-clean but still like herself, like sex. Just starting to get wet for him on his first curious lick, so he detours to kiss her thighs, rub his cheeks against them.

She sighs and lets her legs splay open, her clit jutting out at him, so Frank mouths at it softly until she shudders and pushes against him for more.

This - fuck, but he missed this. He doesn’t even care if he gets off, particularly: or, okay, he kind of does, as evidenced by the way he’s rubbing off against the mattress. But he can take care of that himself later, that’s not the important part.

The important part is Jamia under him, shuddering, breathing gone labored. Her fingers tangling in his hair and pulling.

Pulling in the wrong direction.

Frank makes a little noise of protest when she’s moved him away. She cuffs the back of his head. “I want your fingers,” she says.

Never let it be said that Frank Iero had to be asked to finger his wife more than once.

He takes her nipple in his mouth as he climbs up, craving the taste of her skin. It’s small and hard, and makes her moan when Frank bites it gently. She opens up easily for his fingers, wet and soft, clenching hard around him like she wants to keep him for good. “I missed this,” he says, with a small groan. “Miss taking my time with you.”

“Fuck,” she says. “Hell yeah, baby, that feels so good.” Her hips shimmy, moving with him. “Oh, you know what I miss, Frankie? I haven’t fucked you in ages.”

Frank’s own hips buck forward, just once. It really has been ages, but the words bring a vivid memory of being face down on the bed, his ass raised up, seven inches of solid silicone sliding in and out of him, Jamia’s weight warm on top of him.

She laughs, not unkindly, and kisses him. “Just a few more weeks, babe.”

In retaliation, he bites harder around her nipple. Jamia, who never fought fair, gets her hand between them and rather than touch his dick, goes to rub around his hole. Things kind of escalate until he’s got three fingers pumping in and out of her and she’s got one hand twisting his nipple and the tip of one dry finger breaching him, until they’re both shuddering and writhing against one another, messily getting off.

They’re quiet for a while. Frank’s got his head on Jamia’s breast, listening to her heart beat.

She breaks it off by groaning, and not in a fun way. “I am not taking another fucking shower. Fuck everything.”

With a pang of conscience, he glances at their bedside clock. “Damn, I shouldn’t have kept you up so late.”

Jamia’s smile warms up her entire face. She kisses him. “Hey, that was my decision.” Then her expression clouds. “Call it one for the road. I might have to actually sleep in the office for the next few nights.”

“Ugh.” Frank clutches her tightly. “Do you want me to give you a note? ‘Jamia can’t come to work today because you’re slave driving douchebags. Signed, her husband.’”

She swats his shoulder, none too lightly. “Don’t be a dick.” Then she sniggers. “Well, not too much of one.”

“Yeah, how will you recognize me if I’m not?” He sticks his tongue out at her.

There’s some wet wipes stashed in his bedside drawer, just for cases like this. He hands them to Jamia, leans precariously out of the bed to bring the trash can within comfortable tossing distance. Watches her as she perfunctorily cleans herself up.

“Hey,” she says, just as she’s finishing up. “Remember when you told me you wanted to get fucked by a guy? Is that still a thing?”

“I guess?” He frowns. “I’d rather get fucked by you, if that’s what you’re aiming for.”

“Jerk,” she says fondly, tossing one last wet wipe away and curling herself around him. “I’m not worried about you cheating on me, okay? Really. Call it curiosity.”

“Assuming for a minute that I buy that,” Frank drawls, “then yeah, sure. If I weren’t happily married, taking it up the ass from a guy would be pretty cool.”

“Well, if something like that happens,” Jamia says, “just remember I want video.”

Frank just snorts and turns off the light.

~~

The next day, when Frank wakes up, Jamia’s gone. That’s par of the course these days. She’s still not home when he gets back, which isn’t. Frank spends the night tossing and turning, and arrives at the studio the next morning groggy and kind of pissy.

Or, okay, Frank’s willing to admit it: he’s being a little shit.

Bob’s the first to call him on it. “For fuck’s sake,” he says, disgusted, all but picking Frank up and dangling him by the scruff of his neck. “What the hell is wrong with you?”

Frank’s about to spit something mean back at him when Ray gives him a look, frowns and says, “This isn’t like you, Frankie.”

“Oh, fuck you, too.” Frank wrenches himself out of Bob’s grip and glares at ray. “The one fucking time you bother to get your head out of--”

“Frank.” Gee’s voice is the one he uses to get the crowd to shut up and pay attention on particularly rough gigs. “Shut up.”

Against Frank’s better judgement, he does.

“Go outside,” Gerard says, still in the same tone - not loud, just sort of. Penetrating. “Take a smoke break or something. Call your wife. Come back when you’re fit for human company again.”

Frank mutters uncomplimentary descriptions of Gerard’s parentage as he leaves, but he does leave.

The ally behind the studio isn’t too filthy, lucky for him. He leans against the wall and lights a cigarette, nearly dropping the lighter because his hands are shaking. He takes a hit. Filthy habit, and one that makes him feel so fucking good.

His phone rings when he’s halfway through the cigarette. He doesn’t look at the display, just flicks it open and says, “Yeah?”

“Babe,” Jamia says, fond and reproving in the same breath, and Frank’s carefully built facade of anger crumbles just like that.

He tries to take another hit of the cigarette, chokes, and drops it. Nearly drops his phone, too, in the ensuing coughing fit. He’s half worried she’d have hung off when he finally rasps, “What?” into the receiver.

She laughs at him. “So I take it you’ve been a little bitch today?”

“Gee call you?” He’s got a sinking feeling in his chest. He figured he’d been an asshole, but not enough of an asshole that people would ask his wife to intervene.

“I know you, Frankie.” He can practically hear her rolling her eyes on the other side. That kind of helps. He knows her, too. “I figured you’d get unbearable about now.”

“I can go through entire tours without needing you to hold my hands,” he gripes, without any real venom in it.

If he’s totally honest, he’s mostly pissed off at himself.

“I know,” she says. She doesn’t have to say anything else.

Frank lights another cigarette. Just her silence, the sound of her breaths on the other side of the line, is companionable, and Frank misses her ridiculously. “I saw you less than forty eight hours ago,” he says, plaintive.

Again, she says, “I know.” After a pause, she sighs and adds, “This sucks, Frankie.”

“It does,” he says with feeling. It’s almost worse like this: on tour, he knows that he’s going to be away, and he copes. It’s pathetic and dumb, but he wasn’t expecting being home to ever feel like this, constantly lonely but never alone.

As soon as the thought crosses his mind, he feels guilty. Why should he feel lonely? True, Jamia hasn’t been around as often as either of them would like. But he’s with his band the whole day, and the time he has been able to spend with Jamia was, like, quality time.

So he does what he always does with weird thoughts he doesn’t know how to deal with: blurt it to Jamia. “I’ve been lonely,” he says.

“I can tell,” Jamia says, sympathetic, which--

What?

He hears her laughing across the line, affectionate. “Oh, honey,” Jamia says. “You think I don’t know you? You’re like a puppy, you need someone to play with you or you start chewing the furniture and peeing on everything.”

“Hey!” The protest is automatic. Jesus Christ, she kind of has a point. Frank swallows the rest of his objections. “So what else do you suggest?”

For a few seconds, she’s quiet. Just as he’s about to poke her, she says, “What do you do with bored puppies? Get someone to walk them and play with them.” There’s a rustle, and she says, “Shit, I have to go if I want to take care of this before my break ends. Love you!”

Frank holds the suddenly dead phone with identical measures of awe and disgust. What the fuck did she mean, getting someone to walk him? Was that a dig about his weight or something?

Before Frank can make up his mind to call her again, or at least leave some very empathetic texts, the door opens and Gerard beckons him in, smiling solicitously. “Feeling better?”

“Bunches,” Frank says, surprised to realize he’s not even sarcastic. Maybe Jamia’s right and he did need a walk.

To, like, clear his head. Not one with a collar and leash and things.

~~

The realization crystalizes as Frank walks back into the studio. Specifically, it comes as he walks past Mikey and gives him an affectionate headbutt without really thinking about it.

Mikey sort of stands there awkwardly, not reacting much. That’s fairly standard. Mikey’s not the most demonstrative of people. The weirder part is catching a whiff of Mikey as he comes close: or, more accurately, coming close and not catching a whiff of Mikey.

It leaves Frank disoriented, for just a moment. Then his mind re-alignes it. Of course Mikey doesn’t stink the way he does on the road. Mikey’s currently living at home, where he has a washing machine and readily available hot water and, more importantly, a girlfriend who’ll make his life hell if he doesn’t stick to a normal standard of hygiene.

Tour-rules aren’t home-rules. Frank’s known that for years. It shouldn’t be surprising that Bob shakes him off irritably rather than play along when Frank wants to prank Ray, or that Ray gets pissed rather than laughing. When they’re not on the road, Frank’s supposed to be toning that shit down.

On the other hand, when Frank’s not on the road, he’s supposed to have his Jamia to cuddle with. Life’s a bitch.

Well. He supposes that’s not their fault. For the rest of rehearsal, he makes an effort to tone down his ‘tude.

When Frank goes through the rest of the day without making Bob swear more than like, five of six times, Gerard gives him this encouraging, happy smile. Which should feel patronizing and insulting, but doesn’t, because Gerard’s the kind of dude who honestly means shit like that so much he practically drips sincerity, and also Frank loves him.

Gerard’s also the only one of the guys who’s still abiding by tour rules. When they’re not on the road, he’s usually nowhere near as physically affectionate. Like, sure, he’ll hug Frank or kiss him on the cheek if Frank initiates or, like, hangs out in Gee’s space for long enough.

Possibly it’s just that usually Frank doesn’t.

~~

Gerard holds him back again after they’re done for the day. Frank squirms and tries not to feel like a naughty kid sent to the principal’s office for bad behavior.

Not that Gerard seems unhappy with Frank for anything. No, instead he’s brandishing his car keys at him, saying, “Jamia sleeping at work today again?”

“Unfortunately,” Frank says glumly. He’d received her text message in mid-afternoon, ninety percent of which would have had to be typed with the special keys screen to be rated PG-13.

“Come stay with me.” Gerard wiggles the keys at him again, like he’s hoping Frank would pounce on them like a kitty. Great. First a puppy, now a kitten. What the hell is going on with Frank today?

Possibly the saddest thing is that Gerard and his keys are legitimately tempting, especially in comparison to the cold, empty bed awaiting Frank at home. So Frank says, “Sure,” and gets into the car with Gee.

Gerard tosses Frank his phone as he gets in. “Can you look at my messages?”

Frank gets buckled in and starts scrolling. There’s a couple new ones - spam from Dominos Pizza, a short cryptic “njoy” from Mikey, and--

“Hey, what are you saying to my wife,” Frank says even as he’s opening Jamia’s text. It says, All yours. Plan is go.

“Um,” Gerard says.

Before Frank can prod him for more, his own phone buzzes. He flips it open to find a text from Jamia. “Don’t forget the video,” Frank reads, out loud, then adds, “What?”

Gerard’s getting red in the face, eyes firmly on the traffic ahead. “She says that you might want. Um. And maybe you changed your mind, and that’s totally cool!” He hits the brakes at a stop light. “Like, I get it, some things are hot as a fantasy but you don’t want to actually do them - did I ever tell you about the time with the rubbing alcohol--?”

“Gerard,” Frank says, slowly. “Is my wife setting me up for a sexy playdate with you?”

“I wouldn’t call it a playdate,” Gerard says. He’s still pink around the ears, and kind of adorable, even if he’s still refusing to look at Frank. “I was thinking we’d stay pretty vanilla, at least to start with. Not that I’m assuming we’ll do it again!” He hurries to say. “Or. At all. But if we did.”

Which sounds a lot like what Frank’s suspecting, but he needs it straight. “Gee. Yes or no: did my wife call you to say you should fuck me?” Gerard opens his mouth, and Frank adds, “If you say Um again I will cut you.”

“I wasn’t going to,” Gerard says, with great dignity. “I was going to say that yes, she did.”

“Oh.” Frank considers this. “Cool. Do we want to have dinner first?”

~~

Dinner, on mutual agreement, is picked up along the way and put aside for later. “The afterglow always makes me hungry,” Gerard says sagely. “Plus, y’know, fucking on a full stomach, not always the best idea.”

“This is killing my mood,” Frank informs him as he puts the takeaway boxes on the counter and pins Gerard against his kitchen wall, kissing him until he shuts up.

It’s - weird. And also not, at the same time. Because he kisses Gerard all the fucking time, on stage and just because, but he hasn’t kissed kissed anyone but Jamia since, like, junior high.

And it’s different, too, kissing Gerard in his dark kitchen. His mouth all soft, patient, his lips chapped. Neither a casual little kiss granted in passing nor a fucking show for the audience to scream at.

Gerard pulls back a little, leaning his forehead against Frank’s. He’s breathing a little faster, which is gratifying, and says, “Do you like it?”

“Fuck yeah,” Frank says, crowding in happily for more kisses.

One of Gerard’s hands is splayed across his back, the other cradling his neck, and it’s like Gerard’s grounding him, drawing away all of Frank’s restless energy into himself, leaving Frank relaxed and pleased and clinging closer for more.

Frank must say something along these lines, because Gerard murmurs, “Anything you want, Frankie,” even as he’s fidding with Frank’s belt, and then he’s on his knees, taking Frank’s dick in his mouth.

But Frank groans, and pulls Gerard’s hair, and says, “No, up, c’mon,” feeling a weird sense of deja-vu-kinship with Jamia.

He knows how he wants to come, and it’s not like this.

Gerard’s wet mouth is incredibly distracting, though, especially when he keeps licking his lips like that. Fucker knows it, too, grinning at Frank.

Frank groans and grabs him by the hand, walking to the bedroom. “Come on. Let’s do this right.”

~~

Frank’s almost forgotten how good this feels. He’s face down, ass up, groaning weakly into the pillow as Gerard gets him wet and open with his fingers. “Go fucking faster, I’m not gonna break.”

Gerard says, “I can’t rush my process, Frankie,” and then twists his fingers in a way that leaves Frank breathless. Not fucking fair.

It’s just-- he missed this, feeling full and cared for, having someone’s eyes hot on him like this. Missed even the twinge of pain that comes with taking things a little too fast, barely present now since Gerard is treating him like he’s made of porcelaine.

Even so, it’s good, heady, making so Frank’s floating on hazy pleasure when it all stops. Gerard’s fingers still in him and draw out. For a moment Frank figures that means he’s getting Gerard’s dick now, gleefully anticipates it, but nothing comes.

Instead, Gerard says, “Shouldn’t we film this?” worriedly. “For Jamia, I mean.”

Frank groans again, this time in a distinctly less sexy fashion. “It was a figure of speech, Gee.” When that doesn’t get Gerard back to the fucking immediately, he tries, “We can recreate the scenario for her later, if you want.”

That, fortunately, works.

Getting fucked by a real, flesh-and-blood cock is different from getting fucked by a fake one. Gerard’s cock has more give to it than Jamia’s, is a little smaller, and it’s warm in a way Jamia’s couldn’t ever be, even if they stuck it in hot water first. Instead of feeling the seams of Jamia’s harness, he’s feeling Gerard’s balls nudge against his skin, Gerard’s breath on his neck coming from a different angle than Jamia’s does when they do this.

Frank squirms back, wanting Gerard to stop being a gentleman and fucking fuck him already, push his head down on the bed and make him take. No chance of them actually recreating this with Jamia watching, not the way it’s currently going - she’d probably hoot and wolf-whistle and yell at Gerard to get on with it, he’s spoiling her husband.

Fuck, just thinking about Jamia with them is almost too much. The sheets smell like Gerard, a concentrated scent that would probably be gross if this weren’t someone Frank loved. As it is, it makes Frank’s mouth water, yearning for something to fill it. It’s not hard to imagine Jamia’s scent mixing up in the sheets as well. Frank knows that smell like his own name and address, like a way home.

He can see it, Jamia using his mouth while Gerard fucked him, taunting Frank to use his tongue for something other than talking shit. Gerard is heavier on top of him than Jamia is, his hands firmly holding Frank’s hips down. Getting Jamia off while Gerard pounds into him would be a challenge, but Frank bets he could do it, make her come even as Gerard’s dick grazed his sweet spot over and over.

Could make him come like that, probably, no touching needed except the sweet rub of the sheets against Frank’s dick. Jamia did that often enough, pausing while he was high on afterglow to gloat about how she fucking owned him, inside and out.

Then she’d keep fucking him, because hey, since when orgasm mean sex had to stop?

Frank’s getting close, though, and he can feel Gerard getting there with him, evident in his hitching breaths and the helpless tightening of his grip. Not that Frank can blame him. If Frank is nearly as hot and tight as Jamia is, when they fuck like this, it’s a wonder that Gerard’s lasted even this long.

Kind of puts a time limit on getting off, though. Call it a downside of getting fucked by an actual dick. Frank pushes back and focuses on feeling Gerard in him, all around him. He’s been biting the pillow, probably grossly obvious, so it’s no surprise when Gerard pushes a couple fingers into Frank’s mouth.

The taste is, though. Like the kissing, it’s both deeply familiar and foreign - coffee and nicotine and sweat, bitter-salty and right. It gives Frank this vivid mental image of Gerard’s dick in his mouth, deep, leaking precome and stretching his jaw wide.

Combine that with the thought of Jamia behind him, fucking him mercilessly where he’s already so open for her, both their hands comforting on his skin, and he’s clenching around Gerard and moaning as he comes.

Gerard just makes it better, panting, “Frankie,” into his ear with the same star-struck tone he gets when Frank nails a bridge on the first go, gets it just right for them, oh, Frank wants to get everything right for Gerard all the time, yes.

~~

Frank wakes up at five AM groggy, disoriented as fuck, and a little sore. His phone is beeping, which is probably what woke him up. He’s not surprised to see a text from Jamia.

No video? :(((

Well, now Frank feels like a douchebag. He replies, ill record round 2 4 ya?

He gets back a smiley face and a Just let me watch next time and closes his eyes, snuggling back in with a grin. He knows his wife, yes he does.

Beside him, Gerard mumbles something about coffee and breakfast.

Frank kisses him. “Later. It’s too early, go back to sleep.”

Gerard subsides gratefully. “Want bacon,” he mutters into Frank’s side.

Frank considers cuffing him, decides against it since he can’t expect actual reasoning from pre-coffee Gerard. “You can have Morningstar strips.”

Gerard makes an approving snuffle, falling back asleep. Frank kisses the top of his head and dreams about cooking delicious vegan breakfast for all the people he loves.