nearlylauura (nearlylauura) wrote,
nearlylauura
nearlylauura

I'm Gone With The Moon, New With The Sun

Rating: NC-17 (language, drugs, sex)
Pairing: Brendon/Ryan
POV: 3rd
Word count: 6618
Summary: ‘What the fuck is going on?’ Brendon screams, voice breaking slightly as he holds back the choking fear. And yeah, okay, Ryan totally understands. He’d freak out if he woke up in some random guy’s arms, not remembering a single second of what happened the day previous. Except he’s not some random guy.
Disclaimer: Not at all real although it would be sweet if it was.
Author Notes: My brain started spewing this out in the shower and, well, I really liked the idea of it so here it is. Memory Loss Fic. I have no experience with this kind of stuff but it was fun to be able to play around with different theories and ideas and I know you probably think this is going to be depressing and all lyrical and mysterious but really it's like my other writing. I tried to make it straight to the point and some what humorous and maybe a little sad in places. This is dedicated to Faye for being the best beta and friend ever. She's funny and reliable and amazing and I love her and I don't want to spew a load of mushy crap but just know that this is for her. Thank you also to everyone who comments or even just reads for being supportive and generally awesome. Enjoy my weirdest but probably one of my favourite fics yet.


- - -


The first time Brendon realises something is wrong is when he’s 6 years old. He wakes up and pads downstairs, sleep still clouding his brain, and heads to the kitchen where his mother will be waiting with a nutritious and delicious breakfast of pancakes as Sunday morning tradition entails.

He slips into the stool by the table and instantly begins digging into the warm, fluffy, syrup covered pancakes, glancing up expecting to see his mother smiling at him in her fond way and telling him to ‘wipe his mouth, Brendon, you look like you’re drooling’ but he pauses, eyes widening.

Next to his mother’s everlasting smile is another grin. It’s male and slightly-stubbled and tall and different and new and male. It’s male. Brendon hasn’t ever had a father. He hasn’t ever had a male presence in his life so of course it’s confusing that this complete stranger is sitting opposite him on Pancake Sunday, smiling at him like they’re good friends.

‘Um…’ Brendon says, dropping his fork onto his still mostly full plate as his brows furrow.

‘Hey sport!’ The man, the stranger, replies and reaches a hand out, tussling Brendon’s hair as his mom giggles.

‘Who are you?’ Brendon asks, leaning away from the touch.

Instantly the man’s hand detracts and his smile drops. Brendon’s mom looks at him with sad eyes, moisture suddenly glistening around the edges, and sighs. ‘This is your step-father Brendon.’

Brendon tilts his head to the side, confusion sketched on his face. ‘I don’t have a step-father.’ He says because, yeah, he’s pretty sure he’d know if he did.

‘Yes you do Brendon.’ His mother replies and she laughs a little disbelievingly and glumly. ‘You have for almost a year now. Remember?’

But the thing is he doesn’t.

He just doesn’t.

- - -

Brendon doesn’t forget everything. But it’s not conditional either.

He remembers what he learns. If he watches Food Network one night and sees a recipe for Tacos he likes and decides to try it out, he’ll still remember how to make them a week later.

If he feels like learning Japanese he’ll be able to hold a conversation with a Japanese tourist months later. He’ll remember the language.

The problem is he won’t remember the tourist. Won’t remember their conversation, what the guy looked like, sounded like, won’t remember his existence. Brendon won’t even remember leaving the house.

He’ll remember how to speak foreign words and cook exotic foods but not his own life.

- - -

His mother frets for weeks after he first moves out for college. He’s still surprised after all these years that he remembers who she is every morning even if he forgets everything else, including his ever present step-father.

His roommate is called Jon. He’s a psychology student and so volunteered to help Brendon out in return for being able to use his problem (his parents insist it’s not a ‘problem’, it’s a ‘special quality’ but Brendon’s forgetful, not stupid) as a case study for his final project.

After a few weeks of Brendon running into the living room with a baseball bat every morning, screaming ‘what the fuck is going on! Who the fuck are you!’ Jon comes up with the idea to stick a corkboard to the back of Brendon’s door.

On there he keeps a picture of Jon and a small note to himself.

‘This is your roommate Jon. He’s a nice guy and he makes the best coffee and he wears flip flops everywhere which is awesome.’

Brendon isn’t sure why he felt the need to add in Jon’s choice footwear but it’s too late to figure it out. He also has his timetable pinned up along with his teachers’ names and whether they like him or not along with the names of the people he works with, or just sits with, in class.

There’s also a picture of his mother because he’s always worried he’ll forget her. She’s important. She’s all he really has; the one constant in his life that his brain recognises, the one strong steady relationship, but he still can’t trust himself to maintain that.

- - -

Brendon’s late for class because his corkboard fell down in the night so Jon had spent half an hour chasing him around the apartment and then another half an hour explaining who he was to Brendon and where they were and what was going on.

He’s doing a sort of brisk walk, bordering on jogging, and is balancing 4 folders in his outstretched arms which go flying in every direction when another warm body knocks him to the floor.

‘Shit.’ He curses and begins trying to pick himself up when a slightly tanned hand appears in front of him. He grabs it and climbs to his feet before glancing up. ‘Sorry.’

The guy he knocked into just smiles and pushes soft brown curls out of his eyes with a soft chuckle. ‘No problem.’

- - -

The doorbell rings far too early in the morning. Jon stumbles across the apartment, groaning to himself after having abandoned his coffee machine. Too fucking early. He wipes blearily at his eyes and wrenches the door open.

‘Um. Hi.’ Jon says because he’d expected it to be his best friend Tom or that creepy kid from his class that follows him around all the time but instead it’s a tall, lanky guy wearing a bandana, a fucking bandana and, fuck, are those cowboy boots? Jon thought he had bad taste in foot wear.

‘Hi.’ The guy says in a strangely soothing monotone that makes Jon want to just drop back to sleep where it’s standing but then ‘is Brendon here?’ and Jon shoots awake because shit.

Shit.

‘Okay, um, the thing is,’ Jon says in a hurry but then it’s too late and he hears the door crash open behind him and footsteps crossing the lounge and Jon would make fun of Brendon skipping but right now he sort of detests how cheery and enthusiastic Brendon is in the mornings, even is he is always a little cautious of Jon at first.

‘Hey.’ A boxer clad Brendon chirps with a grin and bounces up to Jon’s side, eyes skipping over his face in the way Jon now recognises as Brendon matching this Jon with the picture on his corkboard. Brendon’s attention quickly turns from Jon to the mysterious stranger at their door.

‘Hey,’ Brendon repeats, ‘are you Tom?’ He then asks because after a few near run-in’s with Tom when Brendon had found him alone in the apartment he’d added the name to the corkboard but hadn’t had the opportunity to add a photo yet.

‘Uh, no.’ Ryan says both confusion and hurt evident in his tone. ‘I’m Ryan. We were gonna go get coffee before class? We met yesterday?’

A frown crosses Brendon’s face as his eyes flicker from Ryan over to Jon. ‘I don’t. Um.’

Jon sighs and beckons Ryan inside. ‘This might take a while.’

- - -

Ryan sits on the sofa, eyes still wide and hands grasped tightly around his untouched coffee.

‘Okay.’ He says, voice cracking as his eyes dart from Brendon to Jon and back again. ‘So. Um. What now?’

Brendon watches Ryan cautiously, now mostly dressed as Jon had insisted it was inappropriate to be half naked in front of a guy you only met yesterday (even if you don’t remember it).

‘We could. We could still go for that coffee?’ Brendon asks hopefully, big brown eyes shining in a way he knows all too well is impossible to say no to.

Ryan looks down and bites his lip. It’s a big commitment, being friends with a guy who won’t even remember you exist in the morning.

‘Sure.’ He says looking up and giving Brendon a small smile as Jon sits silently, analysing.

Ryan’s always been one for a challenge.

- - -

After a week, Ryan’s photo sits comfortably on his corkboard with a small, hand written note.

This is Ryan Ross. The best person in the universe.

- - -

Maybe after two weeks Brendon draws a small heart next to it.

- - -

Brendon likes having Ryan around: even if it is always a little awkward at first. He also forgets how well Ryan really knows him because of how little he knows Ryan.

Sometimes he’ll find himself about to snuggle in beside Ryan and is prepared to manhandle Ryan’s arm around him but as soon as he shifts even a little Ryan automatically lifts his arm, making a comfortable little hole against his side for Brendon.

They’re watching a movie when Brendon says, ‘so sleeping beauty totally reminds me of-‘

‘Jon, I know.’ Ryan says and Brendon feels a little guilty and sheepish because obviously he’s already said this and it’s not his fault exactly but he still feels stupid until Ryan turns to him with a bright affectionate smile.

And that’s when it happens.

Before he realises what he’s doing, Brendon leans forward and presses his lips gently against Ryan’s and it just feels right. He half expects Ryan to push him away but instead he just smiles against Brendon’s lips and begins to move his lips slowly.

After a few moments they pull back and Brendon lets out a shaky breath. ‘First kisses are always the best right.’ He says jokingly because he wouldn’t know, doesn’t remember if he’s ever kissed anyone.

Ryan’s smile drops slightly. ‘Um, second actually.’ He mutters and Brendon’s face drops.

Shit.

‘I, I’m sorry. I didn’t. I don’t.’ He gulps and tries to pull back but Ryan just clamps a firm but soft hold on his chin and keeps Brendon’s eyes level with his own.

‘It’s okay.’ He murmurs and presses his lips against Brendon’s.

‘It’s okay.’ And Brendon believes him.

- - -

They fall into a weird sort of relationship.

Every morning Ryan will cautiously ring the doorbell, 2 cups of steaming coffee in his hands and will pass one of to an anxious looking Brendon who is clearly confused about how to act around the guy who is supposed to be his boyfriend but doesn’t actually know anything about.

Sometimes Ryan will walk Brendon to class or sometimes they’ll just veg out on the sofa together. But however they spend their day, Brendon will always slowly become more confident. He’ll touch Ryan openly and curl into his side and hold his hand.

Eventually, usually in the early stages of the evening, Brendon will lean in for a cautious kiss and Ryan will be soft and gentle and open up and say, ‘it’s okay’ even though he really wants to scream that it’s more than okay.

Sometimes there’ll be some mild groping but Brendon will always stop it from going any further because he doesn’t actually know Ryan. He’s the third date kind of guy, even if he’ll never actually get to the third date.

Every day is the first and for some couples that might make it feel exciting and new but for Ryan it’s exhausting. Not being able to hold Brendon and call him his own. Not being able to touch him and kiss him and wake up with Brendon snuggled comfortably into his arms, nicely naked and trust me.

Ryan has thought about it a lot.

- - -

Jon has a party for his birthday. A big, elaborate, loud and popular party with everybody he knows.

But not Brendon. Not Brendon because, although he loves people, he can’t stand the thought of meeting all these awesome people and making connections and relationships and friends and then not even remembering them in the morning.

Instead, a few days later Jon organises a quiet movie night in. Just him and Brendon.

Jon’s always been a big fan of horror flicks and Brendon, not so much so it’s not surprising when Brendon ends up curled against his side.

When Brendon doesn’t know is that Jon has been carefully watching the time all night. When it hits 1 minute past midnight he turns his focus from the TV to Brendon, looking for any signs that Brendon’s brain has suddenly been wiped. One of his theories is that Brendon’s brain automatically reboots every 24 hours and that this allows him to absorb more information than most people. He did learn how to play 11 different instruments in just 2 years and that’s more than a little abnormal.

But when Brendon notices Jon’s stare he turns towards him with a frown and says. ‘What? Do I have something on my face?’

Jon just shakes his head and turns back to the movie with a sigh just as some girl is getting her guts carved out.

Back to the drawing board.

- - -

‘It’s sleep.’ Jon says, crashing through the door after a 3-hour discussion with his psychology professor on Brendon’s issue. And then oh. ‘Crap.’ He adds as Brendon and Ryan jump apart on the couch, Brendon hurrying to fasten his jeans back up while Ryan wipes a hand across his mouth and hugs his bare chest some what awkwardly.

‘I could. Um. I could come back in a bit?’ Jon asks, already slowly backing towards the door.

‘No. No. It’s cool. Fine.’ Brendon hurries to say, seeing the carefully concealed excitement in Jon’s eyes, as Ryan retrieves his shirt from the floor. ‘Sleep?’

‘Yeah. Right. Okay.’ Jon says as he takes a seat on the sofa opposite. ‘So you know there’s like, stages of sleep? And then there’s the one stage which is like dead time that your brain uses to record all the information from the day and file it away?’ Brendon nods cautiously. ‘So I think your brain never enters that stage, just skips past it.’

‘Okay.’ Brendon says, eyes narrowing as he thinks the possibility through.

‘That makes sense.’ Ryan adds as his eyes connect with Brendon’s and he offers a reassuring smile.

‘So what do we do now?’ Brendon asks and Jon smiles sheepishly.

‘Well…’

- - -

Three days without sleep. Brendon can totally do that. Ryan promised to stay up with him and he has enough energy for the both of them most of the time anyway. Jon has promised them coffee whenever they need it and has offered to drive them around whenever they need in order to keep them entertained.

Really Brendon thinks that spending 72 whole hours with his boyfriend and not having to worry about forgetting who he is sounds pretty awesome anyway.

- - -

Their days consist of cinema trips, ice skating rinks, picnics in the park, cuddling up on the sofa and many visits to the local coffee house. Despite Jon’s promise, he’s out most of the day so they have to ferry themselves around and get their own coffee.

But a day passes and Brendon doesn’t forget. He remembers Ryan and he remembers everything they did the previous day. He remembers how he feels for Ryan and knows that the smile on Ryan’s face is just for him.

Instead of shying away as he would usually do when Ryan wraps his arms around him, Brendon leans into the touch and overlaps Ryan’s hands with his own. Instead of Ryan waiting for Brendon to initiate kisses, worried Brendon isn’t quite ready yet, he helps himself to them freely.

And it’s perfect.

It’s inevitable, of course, that they end up back at Brendon’s apartment, wrapped up in Brendon’s bed sheets. Not sleeping, just resting and twining their limbs together as their lips glide over each other.

Brendon strokes a hand up Ryan’s back and cups it around the back of his head simultaneously with Ryan’s sliding down Brendon’s own back and carefully, cautiously, settling on Brendon’s ass. Asking.

‘Yes’ Brendon thinks and opens his mouth, pushing the approval into Ryan’s own with his tongue.

‘Ryan.’ He gasps and Ryan’s grip tightens, pressing into the soft, rounded flesh. ‘Ryan.’

There’s a blur of movement and suddenly they’re both shirtless, only underwear left, and Ryan’s hovering over Brendon, sheet pooling at his waist as his hands glide down Brendon’s sides and hook into the waistband of his boxers.

He pauses, eyes staring into Brendon’s, asking permission again. Brendon’s mind flashes ‘it’s okay’ and yeah, it’s okay.

He reaches up and pushes his lips against Ryan’s, softly, tenderly as Ryan drags his boxers down, down and off.

It’s better than Brendon could ever have imagined. Feeling every inch of Ryan against him, hot and warm. He wraps his arms around Ryan’s small waist, wants to say ‘stay, don’t go, ever’ but instead just squeezes him tighter and pulls him closer.

Their mouths are pressed together, exchanging air and spit and yes. ‘Yes’ Brendon thinks as a slick finger presses into him and wow, when did Ryan have time to do that, but it comes out as a long moan that Ryan licks from his mouth.

Then it’s fingers and fingers and yes and please and now and Ryan and fuck. Oh fuck.

Ryan’s hot and heavy inside him and it’s uncomfortable and perfect and full and Ryan.

Ryan Ryan Ryan.

Brendon claws at Ryan’s back and he knows he’s leaving marks but he likes it. He likes it. And Ryan’s biting and licking at his neck and he likes that too. Fuck. He really likes that.

‘Fuck,’ He growls, feeling Ryan pull out and push back in faster and harder and sweeter, pushing all of Brendon’s thoughts together into a jumbled mess.

There’s something pooling in the bottom of his stomach and it feels hot and molten and he doesn’t remember this. Fuck, why doesn’t he remember this.

Brendon feels himself lose control, feels himself drop over the edge and he vaguely feels Ryan shaking above him, feels heat spill inside him. Fuck. They probably should have used a condom right?

Then fuck. What the fuck just happened.

His arms go slack around Ryan who’s panting steadily into his shoulder, still fully inside Brendon, and he slowly tries to push himself away. Ryan looks up at him, clearly confused but there’s something in his eyes that makes Brendon stop, pause, and tip his head back, pressing his lips against Ryan’s because it felt like the right thing to do.

Felt like he wanted to do it. Felt like he’d never not want to do it.

- - -

They don’t fall asleep, Ryan makes sure of it. Instead they end up spread out on Ryan’s couch, wasting the time away until Ryan’s roommate comes home.

‘Spencer,’ Ryan says, stroking a hand through Brendon’s soft, dark hair, ‘keeps his stash at the bottom of his underwear drawer.’

Brendon just nods limply and sinks further into the cushions as Ryan goes to retrieve the pot, idly wondering if he’s ever done drugs before and imagining what could have happened, what it is he doesn’t remember.

- - -

‘We should fuck.’ Brendon drawls and collapses against Ryan’s chest, giggling into the smooth, warm flesh.

‘Brendon,’ Ryan moans, attempting to roll away from the sudden weight, ‘we already fucked 2 times. My dick needs rest.’

‘But it’s such a nice dick Ryan. The nicest I’ve ever seen.’ Brendon wriggles down Ryan’s body until he’s nuzzling at Ryan’s crotch and, if he weren’t high, Ryan might think about the fact that his dick is the only dick Brendon remembers seeing, except his own obviously.

‘Spencer.’ Ryan mutters, will power already wavering.

All it takes is one broad lick over his jeans for him to give in.

- - -

‘You have a nice couch.’ Brendon gasps and Ryan pushes in harder.

‘Shame really.’ He mutters against Brendon’s shoulder before he bites down and Brendon’s coming, white streaks decorating the couch.

‘It really was a nice couch.’

- - -

It’s the sudden loss of warmth against his bare skin that wakes Ryan up, not the bloodcurdling scream.

The first thing he thinks is that Spencer came back to the apartment and found him and Brendon curled up on the couch together naked but when he jumps to his feet the first thing he notices is the lack of Brendon, who is, in face, pressed up against the wall at the other side of the room.

He’s still butt naked but no more does he look relaxed. His eyes are darting wildly around the room, muscles flinching every time his gaze falls on Ryan.

‘Brendon,’ Ryan begins calmly.

‘What the fuck is going on?’ Brendon screams, voice breaking slightly as he holds back the choking fear. And yeah, okay, Ryan totally understands. He’d freak out if he woke up in some random guy’s arms, not remembering a single second of what happened the day previous.

Except he’s not some random guy.

‘Brendon, you need to calm down,’ Ryan says, careful to keep his voice flat and even more monotone than usual as he takes cautious steps towards Brendon as you would towards a deer.

‘Where am I?’ Brendon says and Ryan almost bursts into tears himself at how broken it sounds.

‘You’re at my apartment.’ Ryan says, not even noticing that they are both completely naked, which is more than slightly inappropriate in this situation. But it shouldn’t be. It shouldn’t.

‘Who are you?’ Brendon asks, pressing himself further into the wall with every step Ryan takes, eyes still searching for a quick exit.

‘I’m Ryan. I’m your boyf- your friend.’

Brendon looks at him critically, only now taking in their state of undress and his eyes narrow in response. Ryan bites his lip uncomfortably; he’s never had to deal with Brendon like this before.

‘Look. If you just. If you get dressed then I can, I can take you back to your place. Jon’s there. He can. He can explain.’

Brendon looks hesitant but eventually agrees, giving Ryan a wide berth as he circles the room to pick up his clothes and enter the bathroom.

- - -

Brendon strokes a finger over the hard wood edge of the corkboard, eyes scanning the contents. Ryan sits on the bed, chewing his lip and remembering how they put it up after the Three Day Plan was first hatched. How Brendon had said, ‘I want to remember everything.’

It’s slightly smaller than the other, but it’s exclusively about Ryan. His name is written in permanent marker at the top with a small heart floating nearby. There’s a picture of the two of them pinned to the middle and a few others scattered around.

The rest of the board is covered with small material memories, like the cinema tickets from 2 nights ago and the leaf that fell in Ryan’s coffee when they were sunbathing in the park, and a rainbow of post it notes, all with a different story or fact or random piece of nonsense scribbled on.

But it’s all about Ryan.

How Ryan hates sushi and his favourite colour is green and that one time when he was 8 that he drove his bike into the lake. But some things are more intimate. How Ryan likes being tickled on the back of his neck, just below his left ear, how loud he moans when Brendon bites down on his right hipbone.

Maybe Ryan’s favourite part of his own personal corkboard, even if he had protested endlessly when Brendon has first grabbed a pin and exclaimed ‘it’s yours Ryan. If it’s yours then I want to keep it, want to remember it. I want it to be us’, is the slightly crinkled pencil sketch hanging from the bottom right corner.

Brendon’s fingers linger over it, caressing over the curve of his own back, tracing over the shape of his lips, poised as smoke pours out, stroking over the cigarette dangling from his talented fingers.

Ryan feels blood pour into his mouth but he doesn’t stop his teeth digging into his lips.

Something has to flow if his tears can’t.

- - -

Days pass and their relationship returns to normal but, Ryan can never forget the way Brendon had looked at him, genuine fear in his eyes.

Even if Brendon can.

- - -

‘Three whole days Spencer.’ Ryan says into the phone and Brendon pauses in the hallway, curious. ‘We spent three whole days together and they were fucking amazing. You know why? Because he remembered me. He fucking remembered me.’

Ryan laughs slightly disbelievingly before continuing, ‘you have no idea how good it felt to have him look at me with recognition, not the usual guarded confusion or any of that crap. I could touch him and kiss him and just be with him and it was. Fuck.

‘But now. Now I could leave and by tomorrow he wouldn’t give a shit. And I know. I know it’s not his fault but I can’t help feeling like it is. Like he’s doing it on purpose. Like he doesn’t give a shit anyway and it hurts. It hurts so fucking much Spence.’

It’s silent for a few moments and Brendon guesses Spencer is talking on the other side of the phone, offering comfort or advice or anything. Anything to stop Ryan feeling like this even though it should be Brendon helping him because it was Brendon that caused this.

Fuck. He did this.

‘Yeah, okay.’ Ryan mutters and throws the phone onto the couch before rubbing his eyes with clenched fists and taking in a deep breath.

Finally he looks up and freezes when he sees Brendon watching him with wide, sad eyes.

‘I didn’t…’ He says but Brendon cuts him off with, ‘It’s okay.’

Ryan nods and Brendon offers a small smile before disappearing back down the hallway.

Ryan pretends he’s surprised when he hears Brendon call, ‘I’m going out’ and the door slamming behind him.

- - -

It’s 1 am and Ryan’s pacing the lounge, attempting not to chew his entire hand off in worry.

Brendon’s not back.

Different possibilities flit through Ryan’s head. He got lost. He got kidnapped. He got raped. He’s having sex with someone that isn’t Ryan.

He fell asleep.

And believe it or not, that’s the worst scenario Ryan can think of. If he fell asleep in the middle of nowhere and woke up confused and disorientated, no idea what was going on, then Ryan would probably never see him again. He can’t let something like that happen to Brendon. He’s seen the fear in Brendon’s eyes every time he wakes up.

He can’t.

- - -

Half an hour later, after roaming the streets and the words of a guy who claimed to have seen somebody with Brendon’s description enter a nearby bar, he finds Brendon.

It’s not as bad as he expected but it’s still pretty bad.

The place is hazy, smoky, and he almost doesn’t spot the brown haired boy at first. But then as his eyes glance back again, relief hits him, and then confusion, hurt, anger.

Brendon’s hands are tangled up in the tight curls of another guy as they almost devour each other and Ryan feels sick. He marches over to the booth and slams a hand down on Brendon’s shoulder, causing him to flinch and pull away from the other guy, hastily wiping a trail of spit from between their 2 mouths.

‘Brendon.’ Ryan growls and Brendon looks up at him with blank, dead eyes. ‘What. Are. You. Doing.’

‘What does it look like?’ Brendon laughs and, yeah, he’s sort of drunk, while the guy leans in and starts lapping and biting at his jaw.

‘You’re drunk Brendon. You shouldn’t be…’ Ryan trails off at the harsh glint in Brendon’s eyes.

‘Why?’ He snarls and Ryan’s eyes widen at the sudden venom lacing his tone. ‘It’s not like I’ll remember tomorrow right?’

Ryan drops his eyes to the floor and folds his arms defensively across his chest. ‘No.’ He mutters, ‘but I will.’

It’s not until Ryan’s halfway to the door until Brendon breaks from his trance, quickly shoving the guy who’s steadily groping him out of the way and hurrying to catch up with Ryan.

‘I’m sorry.’ He says and the lock of his apartment door clicks open.

‘I know.’ Ryan says and the door closes behind Brendon.

‘Please.’ Brendon says and Ryan walks silently to the bedroom.

‘I’m sorry.’ Brendon repeats and follows him through the open doorway.

‘Please.’ He whispers as Ryan’s arms wrap around him.

‘Please.’ He whispers as clothes are stripped and he feels Ryan’s skin, bare and open against him.

‘Please.’ He whispers as Ryan pushes in and they’re together. One.

‘Please.’ He chokes as his body releases.

‘Don’t go.’ He breathes into Ryan’s neck, arms clamping tighter around his waist.

‘I love you.’ He chokes and it’s true, true, true.

‘Be here in the morning.’ Brendon whispers as Ryan curls into his side.

‘Don’t go.’

- - -

Brendon stretches out, fingertips brushing the headboard as his muscles pull loose. He swings his legs off the bed, rubbing the sleep from his eyes and leans down, pulling on a pair of discarded boxers that look vaguely clean.

He stumbles towards the door and pauses to skim over the corkboard, taking in the information as every morning, before continuing out of the room and over into the kitchen.

Brendon pulls the orange juice from the fridge and gulps it down, straight from the carton. He heads back into his room and grabs a towel, ready to shower, when his eyes catch on another corkboard.

It’s empty except for a small sketch at the bottom and his cheeks tint red as he realises that it’s of him. Naked.

He quickly walks over and rips it from the board, stuffing it into a drawer and hopes Jon hasn’t seen it yet.

‘Why the fuck would I do that?’ He mutters to himself, laughing slightly.

Who would he even let do that?

- - -

It’s almost a month later when Brendon is woken up hammering on the apartment door. He stumbles out of bed, glancing at the corkboard, and heads out of his room and over to the door.

Behind it stand a tall lanky guy, damp brown curls hanging past his red, slight blood shot eyes. His shoulders are hunched and he looks like a depressive if Brendon’s ever seen one.

‘Um, can I help you?’ Brendon asks cautiously, narrowing the gap between the door and doorframe because this guy is kind of scary.

The stranger’s eyes shoot up and pierce into him, gold and bright and vibrant but somehow dead at the same time.

‘Are you here for Jon?’ Brendon asks when the guy doesn’t reply and he’s about to shut the door when the guy’s arm extends, preventing him.

‘Brendon.’ He croaks, voice breaking on the word and Brendon freezes because apparently this guy knows him.

‘Um…’ He says, retreating slightly into the apartment but the guy just follows.

‘I’m Ryan.’ The guy says in a rush. ‘You remember me right? You remember? Do you remember?’ But Brendon shakes his head and the guy let’s out a choked sob.

Suddenly he reaches into his jacket and Brendon’s eyes widen as his brain screams ‘GUN GUN GUN’ but all he pulls out is a pile of slightly damp papers.

He shoves them at Brendon, eyes still staring at him intently, and Brendon takes them hesitantly. There’s post it notes and small drawings and random objects, leaves, tickets, receipts, and then there’s photos.

Photos of him, Ryan. Photos of Brendon. Photos of them together and he looks up at Ryan, eyes wide and frighten and confused and maybe slightly deranged but he’s only echoing what Ryan feels.

‘I don’t.’ Brendon chokes but Ryan just shakes his head and pulls Brendon’s body towards his own.

Brendon should pull away but he doesn’t. He sags into Ryan’s touch and gives in.

Gives up.

- - -

‘Move in with me.’ Ryan mutters into the crease of Brendon’s neck, licking the words into his skin as Brendon’s soft, calloused hands roam over his back.

‘What?’ Brendon replies, pausing his movements.

Ryan raises his head and looks down at Brendon beneath him and thinks ‘beautiful’ and ‘mine’ and remembers the month when he didn’t have this. Couldn’t have this.

He doesn’t ever want to be without it again.

‘Move in with me.’ He repeats and dips his head again to nuzzle Brendon’s jaw. He feels the smile before the nod, but his heart jumps with the small movement anyway.

- - -

Jon helps Brendon transfer all his stuff from his place to Ryan’s. Spencer moves in with his girlfriend and Jon assures Brendon that it’s fine, really.

‘Tom say he’ll probably need a place to stay now thing’s are going downhill with his girlfriend.’ Jon repeats, again as he places the final box onto Ryan’s sofa.

‘But what about your project?’ Brendon asks, puppy dog eyes round and sad and sorry.

‘It’s basically finished anyway Bren.’ Jon chuckles and walks over to Brendon, pulling him into a tight hug. ‘Don’t worry B. Ryan’ll take good care of you. Better than I ever did.’

Brendon let’s out a wet laugh into Jon’s chest and squeezes his arms tighter.

‘I’ll miss you.’ Jon whispers and Brendon wishes he knew why he was crying, wishes he knew why it feels like he’s leaving such a big memory behind when he doesn’t even know Jon. Not really.

Maybe it’s better that way.

- - -

Some days Jon wonders if Brendon really remembers him.

If the phone calls are Brendon really wanting to remember him and keep him in his life or if he just feels like he owes Jon something.

But when he hears the warm voice on the other end of the line his doubts evaporate and he thinks that maybe this was how it was supposed to be.

- - -

It’s an easy Sunday morning when it happens. The kind of morning Ryan used to dream of. Only not this.

Ryan was a lot less cautious with Brendon now, assured that if he felt they were going to far he would tell Ryan. He hadn’t said anything yet. They slept in the same bed and sometimes Brendon would pull away from Ryan’s embrace in the mornings until his attention was caught by the corkboard, now firmly in place by the side of the bedroom door, and then he would relax slightly.

Usually Ryan woke up first, just in case. But this time he didn’t.

It is quiet and he feels soft fingertips skimming over his sides, a hot warm palm on his chest, and he snuggles closer. Gradually his eyes flutter open, expecting to see Brendon’s own dark one staring back but they’re not looking at him. They’re looking over his shoulder.

Ryan lifts a hand and slowly touches it to Brendon’s cheek. When Brendon doesn’t shift his attention but only leans into Ryan’s caress slightly, he drags his fingers down Brendon’s neck and leaves them to rest against his toned, perfect chest.

‘Do I love you?’ Brendon says, ringing clear, slicing the silence.

The pause after is so long that eventually Brendon does bring his attention to Ryan and they study each other for a few quiet, strangely intimate and honest moments.

‘You did.’ He whispers eventually and Brendon just nods like it’s that simple.

It is that simple.

- - -

It’s clear Spencer doesn’t like Brendon from the word go.

When Brendon first opened the door for him, he was met with an icy, blue glare. Spencer’s answers were short and sharp and Brendon tried to remain positive and upbeat throughout their first meeting but it was hard.

Brendon excuses himself to get a drink for a moment and Ryan takes the opportunity to corner Spencer.

‘The fuck are you doing?’ He whispers angrily, pressing a pointy finger into Spencer’s chest.

‘You shouldn’t be with him Ry.’ Spencer replies calmly, used to Ryan’s harsh and bitter tone.

‘Why the fuck not?’ Ryan chuckles darkly.

‘You can’t really be together Ryan. He’s not good enough for you. He doesn’t even rememb-‘

‘Do not,’ Ryan growls, jabbing his finger even harder into his best friend’s ribs and he’s sure it’s bruising but he doesn’t even care, ‘just, don’t.’

And Ryan’s eyes are hard and dead and alive and fiery and serious enough that Spencer doesn’t argue for once.

- - -

No matter how much he tries to deny it, Spencer’s words get to Ryan.

And that simple fact causes him to grip Brendon’s hips tighter, push in harder and faster and let Brendon’s moans vibrate through every inch of his body.

‘Remember this.’ He pants into Brendon’s neck.

‘Remember me.’

- - -

Brendon doesn’t remember.

- - -

‘Hey Ry.’ Brendon says as he slips his arms around Ryan’s neck from behind and it’s times like this that make Ryan thankful Brendon is a naturally affectionate person.

‘Hey.’ Ryan says as he pulls Brendon around the back of the sofa and on to his lap. Brendon is chewing insistently on his lip. ‘What’s on your mind?’

Brendon leans in and pushes his lips to Ryan’s once, carefully, before he burrows into Ryan’s chest.

‘Do you ever think about what would happen if I could remember?’ Brendon asks and Ryan replies,

‘No.’

But what he really means is yes yes yes.

Brendon raises his head and looks at Ryan with such innocence that he can’t help pushing their lips together once more.

‘Yes,’ Ryan says before his brain can think of a reason not to, ‘I think about the dates and the movies and the inside jokes and the morning sex and seeing the glint in your eye and knowing that your mine. I think about it all.’

Brendon smiles sadly, eyes glistening slightly, and ducks back down to tuck himself into Ryan’s chest again.

‘But I think about how we wouldn’t have met.’ Ryan adds softly, ‘about how I wouldn’t ever see you smile, or hear you laugh, or feel you creep up behind me because you get a thrill out of making me scream you idiot.’

Ryan laughs, Brendon joining in, and pokes Brendon in the side jokingly.

‘I love you.’ Ryan says softly into Brendon’s hair and Brendon nods.

‘I know.’

- - -

They spend another 3 days awake together.

But it isn’t full of sex and sweat and drugs and alcohol like last time.

They fill their time with soft touches and hidden glances and careful lovemaking and Ryan’s laugh and Brendon’s smile and at the end of it all they curl up in bed together, heavy and sated and relaxed and perfect.

Ryan feels Brendon’s grin press into his chest and he looks down, raising an eyebrow. ‘What?’

‘I wouldn’t want it to be any different.’ Brendon says and looks up at Ryan with clear eyes.

‘Me neither.’ Ryan says softly, combing his fingers through Brendon’s dark hair because no.

He wouldn’t.

- - -

Brendon feels the mattress shift beneath him, springs groaning, and tightens his arms around the warm mass beside him, trying to ignore the bright rays of sun shining through the shutters. The body chuckles and Brendon smiles before it attempts to roll away once more.

‘No Ry,’ Brendon moans, ‘It’s cold…’

And then the body beside him freezes, Brendon’s own stiffening in response. His eyes fly open thinking ‘oh shit it isn’t Ryan’ but it is and all’s fine again. Until it’s Ryan. It’s Ryan.

Ryan.

Then they are kissing and touching and whispering and fucking and being and he remembers.

He remembers.

Tags: nc-17, ryden, rydon, standalone
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