I hate Valentine’s Day, Gerard thought as he gloomily put the finishing touches on the card he was making.
Inside the card was a very gushy, sappy confession of love he had written to Frank Iero, his long-time crush who didn’t even know he existed. But, like every other year, Gerard knew he would never have the guts to give it to Frank. So, like every other year, on February 13th, Gerard tossed another perfectly made Valentine’s Day card into the trash can by his desk.
He leaned back his desk chair, letting his shaggy bangs fall over his eyes and sighing dejectedly.
I’m such a coward, he thought, hating himself for being so spineless, No wonder Frank doesn’t even know me.
Gerard bit his lip, feeling his eyes start to sting with tears but just as he was about to burst into tears, Mikey burst into his room.
“Mikey!” Gerard said, clearing his throat and quickly brushing his palms across his eyes. “Haven’t you ever heard of knocking?”
Mikey shrugged suspiciously, “Um, were you crying?”
Gerard snorted, “Hell no.”
“Uh huh…” Mikey nodded sceptically.
“What do you want?” Gerard snapped, blushing.
Mikey smirked at Gerard’s discomfort and held up the camera clutched in his hands.
“I need some photos of you.”
Gerard groaned, “Mikey, you have a billion photos of me, couldn’t you use some of those?”
Mikey looked away and suddenly, he looked decidedly uncomfortable. Gerard arched an eyebrow. When his brother got looks like this, it could only mean bad news for him…
“Actually… I kind of need… uh… specific pictures of you.” Mikey stammered.
“Specific how?” Gerard asked suspiciously, twisting a lock of his jet black hair between his fingers.
Mikey opened and closed his mouth a few times, as if tasting different ways of replying. Finally, he blurted, “They need to be really sexy.”
For a moment, Gerard just blinked, not quite sure he’d heard his brother right. Then it registered.
“WHAT?!” he nearly choked, “Why?!”
“Well… uh… I’m doing this project on photography in advertising for art and I need a model and it’s sort of due for tomorrow so… yeah.” Mikey stammered.
Gerard rolled his eyes. It was just like Mikey to wait until the last minute to do his homework and normally, Gerard would have helped him. But, on top of this being a really strange project that could possibly result in a lot of embarrassment for him, Gerard was still feeling the annual Valentine’s Day depression he always felt and was not in the mood for a photo-shoot.
“Sorry Mikes, I’d help you but… not today.” Gerard sighed.
“But why?” Mikey whined.
“I just don’t feel like it.” Gerard muttered, turning away from Mikey.
“Come on Gerard, be brave for once!”
Gerard flinched but said nothing.
“Are you depressed because tomorrow’s Valentine’s Day and you don’t have a date?”
Suddenly, Gerard leaped to his feet, his hazel eyes blazing, and stood two inches away from Mikey, “None of your business! I just don’t feel like it okay?”
Mikey took a step back, raising his hands in defence.
He turned to go and Gerard sat down, sighing with relief.
“Oh but Gerard?”
“Mm?” Gerard grunted, not bothering to turn around.
“No wonder no one wants to date you. You’re such a coward.”
“Such a coward.”
Frank doesn’t know I’m alive.
“Such a coward…”
For the second time in a minute, Gerard jumped to his feet and within seconds, he was blocking the doorway for Mikey. He had a look of fury and determination etched across his face as he slammed the door shut, locked it, and turned to Mikey.
“Let’s do this,” he growled.
Mikey grinned and lifted the camera to his face, jumping onto Gerard’s bed so that he had a better view of him. “Alright!”
Gerard put one hand just above the waistline of his skinny jeans, lifting his shirt up ever so slightly. He jutted out his hip, let his other arm fall to his side and smiled at the camera in an “I know you want me” way.
He fell on all fours, his shirt falling forwards to reveal part of his back, and froze in the middle of a cat-like motion and winked with a dangerous grin.
He stood up, legs spread as wide apart as his tight black jeans would allow and tiled his head ever so slightly back, blowing a teasing kiss at the camera.
He turned completely away from the camera, wrapping his arms around himself and tossed a sexy pout over his shoulder.
Finally, he leaned back against the door, bringing his hands up in a gun shape to his lips and blowing on his finger tips with half-lidded eyes.
Mikey jumped up and down on the bed in excitement and, when Gerard resumed a normal pose again, fell into a cross-legged position.
“Gerard, that was…!” Mikey couldn’t find any words to express how awesome that was. “You went all sex-kitteh on the camera!”
Gerard giggled, his bad mood from a few moments ago suddenly lost. He ran his fingers through his now slightly sweaty black hair and bounded forwards so that Mikey could show him the photos.
And he was… shocked. Was that really him? The boy in the camera looked… confident. And brave. And wild. All the things that Gerard believed he was not.
“Wow Mikey, you are some good photographer!” Gerard whistled.
Mikey laughed and shook his head, “Nah, I just had a really great model!”
Gerard flushed with pleasure, a beautiful smile lighting up his face, and Mikey couldn’t resist bringing the camera up to his eyes one last time.
“Hey, don’t get carried away now!” Gerard grinned, swatting his brother on the arm.
Mikey grinned back. He had enough photos to serve his purpose. He stood up off of Gerard’s bed and just as he was about to leave, something in Gerard’s trash can caught his eyes.
“What’s this?” Mikey reached into the bin and pulled out the card.
But before he could open it, Gerard squeaked and grabbed it out of his hands, tossing it into the bin again.
“It’s nothing!” he snapped, his good mood suddenly evaporating.
Who was he kidding? He was still as spineless as ever, no way were a few pictures going to change that. And to Frank, he would always be invisible.
Gerard ducked his head.
“I-it’s nothing,” he repeated.
For a second, a fleeting look of mischief passed across Mikey’s features but then he shrugged and smiled, “Well, thanks for your help.”
“Anytime,” Gerard muttered.
As soon as Mikey left, Gerard flopped backwards onto his bed and sighed. Photo-shoots were tiring as hell!
Within moments, he’d fallen asleep, dreaming of becoming a famous model and of Frank finally noticing him.
He was so deeply asleep and so caught up in his dreams that he didn’t hear Mikey sneak back into his room.
“Gerard?” Mikey whispered, checking if he was awake.
“No… no more signatures…” Gerard mumbled, turning over in bed and tucking his hands under his cheek.
He looked so adorable, the side of his face pressed against his hands and his hair pushed back off his face for once, that Mikey just had to take one more picture.
The more “adorable” he had, the better chance his plan had of succeeding… But he couldn’t get distracted now…
Mikey took a quick look around and immediately found what he was looking for.
“Sorry Gee, I forgot this,” he giggled, picking it up and slowly backing out of his brother’s room.
The next morning was a blur. Gerard’s alarm didn’t go off so he woke up to the sound of Mikey shouting “You have ten minutes to get out of the house or you’re gonna miss the bus!”
Gerard took a shower so quick he felt like the water never even touched him and then he barely had time to pull on a pair of jeans, a black t-shirt, shove his feet into his beat up black Doc Martens and draw messily around his eyes with black eyeliner before he grabbed his backpack and an apple and raced out the door.
All too soon, he was in front of his open locker, staring covertly at Frank, who had the locker across the hall from him.
A messy line of girls had formed in front of him and as each one handed him a Valentine’s Day card, he read it, kissed her gently on the cheek and flashed her a dazzling smile. Gerard sighed dreamily with the other girls. For a second, he wondered if he would have received a kiss and a smile if he’d been brave enough to give Frank his card. But then he shook his head. Frank would have probably just laughed.
As if hearing his thoughts, Frank suddenly looked directly at Gerard, who blushed and looked away just as suddenly. His eyes fell to the very back of the line where a single boy stood, holding an envelope casually in his hands. Gerard’s mouth dropped open. It was Mikey.
A billion thoughts raced through his head. Maybe Mikey secretly had a crush on Frank too. Maybe Mikey was just saving a spot for another girl. Maybe he was… maybe he was… maybe he was about to give Frank the photos he’d taken last night. The photos that were supposed to be for an art project on models. A project which Gerard never recalled doing when he was in Mikey’s grade… Oh dear God.
Just as Gerard was about to surge forwards and tear the envelope out of Mikey’s soon-to-be-dead hands, his brother reached the front of the line and handed Frank the envelope. Frank looked taken aback and Mikey laughed, pointing straight at Gerard and saying something into Frank’s ear.
As Frank looked up to him again, Gerard turned away quickly, busying himself inside his locker. He was dead. He was so dead.
He stealthily snuck a glance over his shoulder to see Frank tearing open the envelope and pulling out several photographs and… was that his card?!? Jesus Christ, Gerard was beyond dead.
He closed his eyes, willing this to all be a dream but when he opened them again, Frank was flipping through the photos, his mouth open and his green eyes growing wider and wider with each photo. Oh God no.
Finally, Frank opened the card, his eyes reading Gerard’s words quickly but with care. Gerard cringed as he remembered all the gushy crap he’d written. Something about loving him more than words could ever say and him being so far away… Gerard blushed, remembering he’d actually written a poem of sorts.
To Gerard’s utter horror, Frank closed the card and turned and started heading directly towards him. Mikey grinned and slipped away while Gerard slammed his locker shut and started speed-walking to get lost in the many students milling around the hallways.
But Frank must have had some sort of heat seeker or something (Gerard was sure his face was burning) because soon, Gerard felt a light tap on his shoulder and whirled around to come face to face with Frank.
“Hey,” Frank said, his expression neutral, “Gerard Way, right?”
Gerard nodded wordlessly, his knees suddenly weak.
Frank stared awkwardly at the floor, “So your brother gave me this card and these photos and he said they were from you and I was wondering if-”
“Oh God Frank, I’m so sorry, my brother is a moron and an imbecile and an idiot and he told me the photos were for a project and I didn’t write that card for you, well I did but I wasn’t going to give it to you because I was too scared to and my idiotic brother did give it to you and I’m…” Gerard started to babble, going redder and redder with every word he uttered.
But he was soon cut off by Frank’s sexy, musical laugh.
“So you did write it?”
Gerard was sure he was redder than a fire truck but he nodded, “Yeah, I know it’s stupid and I’m sorry and I didn’t know what I was-”
Frank held up a hand, his hazel eyes flashing, “Shut up and kiss me idiot.”
He crushed his lips against Gerard’s and pushed him back until he was pinned against a locker. Gerard froze in utter disbelief for a second before melting into Frank’s kiss and wrapping his arms around his waist. All the noise of the hallway blurred around him and for ten, blissful seconds, the only sound Gerard could and needed to hear was the in sync beating of his and Frank’s hearts.
Finally, Frank pulled away, smiling shyly at Gerard, “Could I ask you a favour?”
“Anything,” Gerard breathed.
Frank held out the now slightly crumpled photographs that Mikey had given him. Gerard cringed with embarrassment. Mikey had scribbled slutty messages on each of them like, “Meow, come and get me,” and “I know you want me babe.”
But Frank seemed to like them. In fact, he was staring at them and looking quite mesmerized.
“Frank?” Gerard said, lifting one hand off Frank’s slim waist to wave it in front of his face, “What was that favour you wanted?”
“Huh?” Frank shook his head, dazed, “Oh yeah…”
Gerard smiled and tapped Frank cheekily on the nose.
Frank blushed and took a deep breath, “I know it’s kind of weird but… could you sign these for me?”
Valentine’s Day was officially his favourite day of the year.