Gerard had messaged him for the third time that night. He didn’t respond, of course, because he had far too many people and far too many things to do besides chat with him, but he could only hope.
Who he was talking about was the one and only Louis Tomlinson. One of the five people in the biggest boy band, and his favorite band, in the world. One Direction. They meant everything to him. They were the only thing that mattered to him, really. It was their music that kept him happy, their music and how nice and kind they were to their fans. He especially liked Louis, who was the best of them all.
But whenever he messaged Louis on the Social Media site, he never responded. No matter what it was, nothing was ever sent back to Gerard despite the hundreds of messages he’d sent. And that was okay with him. Just sending the message made Gerard feel better inside. At least he had their music. If he didn’t have that, he would be more miserable than he was now.
His life wasn’t easy. And for a 16 year old boy, he knew it would only get worse. His father beat him, and yelled at him. His father, Scott, hated his son. Gerard was blamed for his mothers’ leaving them a few years ago. He came out as gay and his mother despised him for it so much she couldn’t even be around him. After that, his father began the abusive words because he hated that Gerard was why his only love left. ‘Fagot’ wasn’t even the half of what was said every day. He cried his self to sleep from pain, emotional and physical. His father used corporal punishment when he didn’t say something right. He used his belt and made him bleed. The only freedom from his father was when he went to work, as a bouncer at a local club.
He had no one. He didn’t even have a friend or go to school to make anything because his father home-schooled him, and never let him leave the house, and that was torture. Being surrounded by nothing but bad memoires and his father’s hurtful words and fists, Gerard had only dreamt of a better life.
It was that evening he was beaten for being stupid, so said his father. With swollen eyes from crying, and a throbbing pain on his butt and back from the belt, he messaged Louis one last time before passing out.
‘hope ur night was better than mine, it ended in pain’
He woke up and was surprised to find his father gone. Usually he was back from work, and would have Gerard cook breakfast for them both. So he put in an Eggo and waited, and checked his phone. And there was a new message in his inbox.
It was from Louis Tomlinson.
Gerard’s heart stopped beating. Then, it went into overdrive. He clutched his phone (he got it from his father, a hand-me-down that had a cracked screen but it worked so he was glad to have it) to his chest and lost it. He grinned for a second, took a seat, a breath of cool air, and opened it. It was recived four hours ago, 5 am.
‘oh, love, what happened?’
Gerard checked his last message he’d sent. He couldn’t remember last night after his father came into his room and took hold of his belt to whip him. He was so high on pain that apparently he’d spilled that he’d gotten hurt, and Louis cared enough to respond.
Gerard didn’t usually send such and emotional message. It was usually ‘hi how are you’ and ‘love this song’ and so on.
But he’d responded. And that, that was more than Gerard could ever hope for. Louis Tomlinson actually chatted back to him.
Gerard nibbled on a banana and hummed. He resituated his self on the sofa so he didn’t lay on his butt too much, it still had some welts on one cheek. He got to thinking. Maybe he could spill everthing to Louis. He’d never done it, because he wanted positive thigns to say to Louis, he made Gerard so happy. But he could fianly tell somebody and why not Louis Tomlinson? He wasn’t there, he couldn’t do any harm by saying that over the internet in a private chat box. Louis didn’t know him or anything about him besides Gerard’s username. It was sort of like he could say anything he wanted and it would be all right.
After thinking of what to say back, he responded to Louis with ‘the usual nightly routine’. It seemed a bit emo, but it was true. Almost every day or night Gerard got beaten, if it wasn’t a slap in the face it was a spanking with the belt on his bare ass. If it wasn’t a beating, it was choking while Scott told Gerard how worthless he was, and how he wished he had left like his mother had.
Gerard sighed, and took some pain meds before putting on the TV. He waited for a reply as he watched My Little Pony, something he could only watch when his father wasn’t home. He couldn’t watch TV at all when Scott was home unless he wanted more of his belt.
It was an hour later that his phone dinged. He was so quick to grab it and look, jittering, wondering if he went to far, if it was Louis or just an alert.
But it was him. ‘the usual? That isn’t good at all love. Please talk to someone okay’
‘cant its too risky I’ll get in trouble’
That, and Gerard didn’t want to live in a foster home, which is what would happen if he left or told.
Louis still kept messaging him. ‘please love if someone is hurting you get the police or a friend to help you. I don’t want you hurt’
Like Louis actually cared about him, and Gerard was so touched he actually made a half-sobbing sound. No one cared about him before, and now Louis friggin Tomlinson cared about him. ‘don’t have anyone to help tbh’
‘so then the cops? A neighbor?”
Gerard didn’t respond to that yet. He didn’t know what to say to that. What could he say? That his father trapped him in the house. That he barely got out, only at night to walk to the corner store to get snacks with his pitiful money he earned doing mediocre things for the neighbors that didn’t care about him still. That his father beat him.
He grit his teeth to keep from crying. ‘I have no one’
Louis didn’t reply.
Gerard had an odd little fantasy. He wanted to be treated like a baby. So when he found that out about his self, thinking himself an outcast, he searched online and found an entire community of people that also liked that. And he found more about it. He almost wanted to join some of them in their little groups, but he found it too frightening and scary.
So instead, he read, looked, and dreamed and imagined being an adult baby. Pictured himself in diapers and onesies, and sucking on pacifiers that were big enough for his mouth. If he owned a credit card he would buy so much cute stuff online. And their were mommies and daddies that took care of their ‘littles’, and Gerard wanted that, wanted somebody to care for him like that so desperately. It would make everything so easier. He just wanted someone to love him.
Sometimes, he slipped into a headspace. At night when he got comfy with his blankets, when Scott wasn’t home. But he couldn’t do it too often, only once a week or so. It made life seem better, and his head less crazy. All he did was watch cartoons, My Little Pony was one of his favorites, and cuddle his blanket and be as little as he wanted to be. Gerard was his happiest then.
For the next few weeks Gerard and Louis chatted. It was nice, and the best part of Gerard’s day was when he got Louis’ messages. They talked like normal friends, and then they talked about the not so normal things. Like Gerard’s life. Eventually Louis got it out of him why Gerard had sent him that first chat he'd read. There were so many supportive messages, x’s and o’s by the hundreds, and it made him feel so good. He felt wanted and liked. He knew that not all people were like his father, but it was great to see it.
That night Louis was the first to send him something. He lay in his bed on his belly, kicking his feet up and down. His father was at the club working so he was free to do what he wanted.
‘hi lovely how are you? :)’ He was so sweet to Gerard.
‘Good! Just having a quiet night. You?’
‘Not so quiet. H is having a get together for us five, making drinks and dinner. Everyone is drunk haha’
Gerard smiled and giggled to his self. ‘you aren’t?’
‘nope. Wanted to be sober to talk to you, sweetheart. Make sure you were okay’
Gerard blushed. Louis said the kindest things, and when he called him sweetie or love his heart pounded.
‘oh thanks! But you rlly didn’t have to im fine’
‘he not home 2nite?’
Gerard frowned. He didn’t like talking about his father. ‘no, he’s working.’
Gerard grabbed his blanket and covered himself with it. It was a comfort item to him. He really didn’t want to think about his father. Not when, just yesterday, he got caned for failing his math quiz. Scott printed things from online for his home-schooling but didn’t teach him anything, and just beat him for it when he failed.
‘G, when are you gonna get help? I worry about you every day love’
He sniffled, wiping his nose on his pillow. ‘don’t know. Im afraid I guess’
‘what are you afraid of? Don’t you want it to stop?
‘of course. Im just afraid of what will happen after. Im only 16’
He didn’t want to go to a foster home, that sounded just as awful.
And, oh. He just told Louis his age. He was 5 years younger than him. Would this be it, the end of their conversations that made Gerard the happiest he’d ever been? He would go lay in a deep, deep hole if that was true. Was he too young for Louis to talk to, or was he too immature?
The next message was a little bit late, and those 8 minutes that went by were terrifying, Gerard thinking he was forgotten again.
‘It will be hard I know, but you’ll be away from that pain and be happy without him, that im sure of. Im only trying to help you, love, so don’t take this the wrong way xoxx’
Gerard giggled through his little amount of tears. ‘can we not talk about it anymore plz?’
‘ok, if that’s what you want baby.’
Gerard’s heart stuttered. ‘so how’s that party?’
‘niall and li are trashed dancing on Wii. Z is with Haz in the kitchen eating everything’
‘bored. They think ive been ignoring them cuz im talking to you.’
‘im sorry! :(‘
‘don’t be, I like talking to you! x’
Gerard rubbed at his eyes. He was suddenly tired. He didn’t know if it was from staring at his phone screen or the usual emotional nights of his life, or what. ‘im think im gonna head to bed now.’
‘ok baby have a good sleep. Before you go can I get your phone number?’
Gerard held in a scream. Without question, he typed it in. Not a minute later he got a text message. ‘this is lou! Xoxoxx’
He hadn’t ever felt anything better before. He went to bed, grabbing his newly bought pacifier (he had to settle for a regular one he’d gotten at the store, it was a pink one, too. It wasn’t good for his jaw but he had a tiny mouth anyway, and he stuck his thumb in there sometimes as well). Feeling content in his heart, he fell asleep.
He’d had enough of the pain. Enough of the crying. Enough of his father. He just wanted it to end.
His father was drunk, and it was the first time he’d come home wasted. And he beat his ass with a belt, and choked him, so much that Gerard was lifted off the ground for a second, and slapped his face and kicked him in the side. He spat on him. Called him ugly, faggot, and an idiot he never wanted.
Gerard watched him go into his bedroom, slamming the door. Everything came crashing down on him and he decided with finality right then what to do.
So he left.
It was 1 in the morning. He was just walking the streets, well, limping in the streets. All he had was a backpack with clothes and a few other things. He was done with his fathers’ shit. He was done with the pain. He just wanted to have one person care about him, one that didn’t hurt him like Scott.
So he called the only person in his contacts besides 911. The only one who did care about Gerard. Louis.
They hadn’t ever heard each other’s voices over the phone. He’d had his phone number for four days now, and all they did was text. Still messages online too, but mostly just short little texts.
When he answered, Louis sounded wide-awake. “G?”
“L-loui-is?” He could barely talk. His voice trembled and his throat hurt and he just wanted to sleep and not be in pain.
“Sweetheart what’s wrong?” he panicked. “Where are you at?”
“I-I don’t kn-know.” He sobbed, and curled up in an empty street way. “Please. It h-hurts.”
“Do you need a hospital, an ambulance?”
“N-no.” He let out some hiccupping sobs. “It h-hurts so m-much Louis, please make it sto-op!”
“Oh god. Harry, we need to leave now!” he shouted. Then, much softer, “Ger, honey, I’m coming for you, okay? We just landed here, and I can go to you. It’ll be a while, so I want you to find someplace safe, a locked bathroom somewhere or anything, and wait for me.”
Louis was here? Why? “Why?”
“Why what love?”
“Why…here?” He wiped his eyes, and groaned. His face hurt. It was swelling, too, he could feel it.
“To see you. I wanted to see you. Now just do as I said, please, love.”
“Okay.” He started walking to a nearby fast food chain that was open 24/7. He would sneak in and use their bathroom, lock the door if he could.
“Where are you gonna be, G?”
He told him where, they said their goodbyes and that was it.
Then Gerard waited for him in the tiny bathroom. He put cold water on his face to make the swelling go down, pressed a wet paper towel to his neck to help take away some pain from the choking, and he looked at his behind in the mirror. It wasn’t pretty, had lots of red and black and purple lines of bruises. His dark black hair was matted, his green eyes dull and swollen from crying.
And Louis was going to see him like this, which just made him cry. The first time they would meet and he’d be covered in marks his father left. Perfect.
He had his phone clutched to himself in case anything changed, but it was low on battery. He got one message from Louis saying that he was an hour away, and then his phone died. So he lay on the floor, curled up, he was short anyway, only 5 foot 5, using his bag as a pillow even though it hurt his face, and closed his eyes.
There was a banging on the door that woke him up. He whimpered when he opened his eyes it was just darkness, the lights having timed out. He tried to sit up but it hurt his back and bottom.
Luckily, the door was thrown open, and there was his hero, Louis. Behind him, a fast-food worker girl, and Harry Styles, all three with worried looks, but Louis’ the most worried of all. He was ashamed, so he looked down, avoiding their eyes.
“Ger, honey,” he cooed, and knelt in front of him. He touched his chin to lift it, and he had the kindest brightest eyes. “We’re gonna get you help, okay?”
“N-no hospitals please.” He whispered, throat throbbing.
Louis looked him over, saw all his injuries that were bare, then looked back at Harry, who shrugged. The worker was gone by now, Harry probably shoed her away. “We can get one for him at the hotel. If he can wait a few more hours.”
“Please,” he begged. He didn’t want anyone else seeing him this way, and he didn’t want anyone finding out about this, about how it happened. “Please, Louis.”
“Okay. But we’re getting you some meds, and then you’re going to rest.”
He nodded, wincing. “Okay.”
“Save your voice, love, your throat looks very bad. Can you stand?”
His lip wobbled. “N-no.” He wiped his eyes, and whined. “Hurts everywhere.”
“Okay, honey, I’ll carry you.” He somehow maneuvered Gerard into his arms with little pain, and Harry took his bag for him, Gerard thanking him. “No talking,” Louis scolded gently, taking them out to a car. It was Harry’s car. If Gerard wasn’t in so much pain, he’d be star struck. But he was just embarrassed, and wanted to sleep and not hurt all over.
“Lay him in the back, I’ve got a blanket he can have.” Harry opened the back door, and Louis lay him down along the seats. Harry had a light blanket and Gerard gave him thanks with his eyes, and Harry smiled softly at him.
“We’re going to the store to get some pain meds for you, then you can sleep good, okay, hon?” Louis pet his hair, and Gerard sighed. “I’ll look after you, I promise. I’ll take care of you now, G.”
Gerard closed his eyes, and smiled. He always wanted to hear that.
The ride to the store was quick, and they made him drink a bottle of water and three pills, they didn’t say what they were but he trusted them more than he did his own family. 15 minutes later, he was feeling better, numb, and then he was asleep.
“Lou, I don’t think this is a good idea.”
“I do. He’s got no one anyway, he told me. I will take care of him and he knows that.”
“But this way? Are you sure?”
“I’m positive. Didn’t you see his bag? He’s got a pacifier and a baby blanket, and he sucked his thumb the whole ride here. If it doesn’t work, I’ll stop. But it will.”
“If you’re sure.”