Roses Are See-Through [frank/gerard r standalone]
Pairing: Frank/Gerard (Gerard/Bert)
Disclaimer: This never happened.
Summary: “Ghosts are overrated,” Gerard says. A transparent Frank laughs.
Warning: Character death... sort of?
A/N: Um, I'd like to thank ivesia19 who basically let me steal this out from under her - what? she wasn't going to write it ;] Hope I did the thing justice. Oh yeah, she wrote the summary, which is what all this was based off of in the first place.
It isn’t like Gerard actually believes in ghosts anyway.
When he tells Mikey about it, Mikey just laughs at him, sort of vaguely amused, and yeah, Gerard is never telling anyone about the ghost that lives in his apartment.
When he moved into the building, Gerard hadn’t expected anything other than maybe a few leaky pipes, maybe the walls would need to repainted, maybe, if it was really bad, he’d find a mouse in a corner. He hadn’t expected to wake up one morning with the strange feeling that he was being watched and find that he actually was being watched.
Frank is the kind of ghost that Gerard always pictured as the kind he’d like to live with, if he had to live with one, which now, he does.
He can’t really explain anything about Frank except that he’s always there, and maybe it had freaked Gerard out a little when he’d woken up that day with Frank fucking hovering over the bed, but he’s gotten used to it, mostly.
“Ghosts are overrated,” he says when Frank drifts after him into the kitchen where he makes coffee and Frank pouts at him because he can’t have any. Gerard finds it slightly odd that ghosts can pout, but then he finds it odd that he can even talk to Frank at all.
Frank laughs at that, crossing his arms, that same impish grin on his face as he always has.
“You only say that because I’m here. I bet before you denied they existed.”
“Didn’t you?” Gerard asks because, honestly, it’s true, but he can’t tell Frank that. Frank knows him too well by now.
Frank shrugs, picking at the sleeve of his ripped tee shirt. Gerard has never asked how he died, never wanted to. All he knows is that Frank has a tear in his shirt down the front and it never goes away no matter how much Frank tries to fix it.
“I believed in zombies and vampires. How could ghosts be much different?”
Gerard has to give him that one as he pours himself a cup of coffee and takes a sip. Frank watches him sadly. Gerard has heard enough about Frank’s love of coffee to know that he misses it, possibly more than he misses sex, but Gerard tries not to think about Frank and sex.
Frank, despite being dead, is a very good-looking ghost, and sometimes, Gerard has dreams where Frank is real and corporeal and they somehow get into situations he wouldn’t mind acting out if only it were real. But it’s stupid and pointless and crazy, so Gerard does his best not to think of Frank like that.
Frank never notices though, just sighs at the coffee and sweeps his transparent hand through the countertop.
“Can you see other ghosts?” Gerard asks as he leaves the kitchen for his studio.
He used to think it was weird, having gotten the apartment so he could live alone and work on his art, and then finding Frank there and that he wasn’t going anywhere – Gerard hasn’t asked about that yet either. He’s not sure if he’s scared to know or if it really doesn’t matter. Frank never says anything.
Frank drifts after him lazily, messing with his hair, and Gerard looks away, because, like everything else with Frank, he has nice hair too.
“I’ve never seen any others,” Frank replies vaguely. “But I don’t really leave the apartment.”
Gerard pauses as he gets out his paints, glancing at where Frank is hovering over a stool, legs folded beneath him but he’s not touching the chair. Gerard has long given up trying to figure out how it works. Instead, he selects a shade of green from his many jars.
“Can I what?” Frank asks, unfolding his legs and drifting over to peer over Gerard’s shoulder.
“Leave the apartment,” Gerard adds, turning and accidentally turning halfway through Frank. It always seems weird as he stumbles back and Frank hardly looks perturbed. Gerard thinks that if he was real, he might be able to touch him, feel his smooth skin. Instead, he just feels awkward as he maneuvers around Frank.
“Never tried,” Frank replies thoughtfully. “But why bother? I’ve got everything I need here.”
His grin is as bright as the fucking sun, and sometimes, Gerard wishes he did live alone so he could paint canvas after canvas of it and Frank wouldn’t know.
“How’s the ghost?” Mikey is still sort of laughing at him and Gerard rues the day he ever brought it up, but it had been fucking weird the first time! He’d had to tell someone. Of course, when Mikey had come over, Gerard determined to prove it to him, he hadn’t been able to see Frank. Frank had spent all the time making fun of Mikey’s glasses.
Grumbling to himself, Gerard just sips his coffee and tries to remind himself that it is a good thing to meet his brother at least once a week so he can be sure he didn’t die.
“He’s real,” he insists, annoyed. Mikey still doesn’t believe him, and he might be beginning to think that Gerard is losing it, shut up in his apartment with only paint fumes for company.
“Right,” Mikey mutters, clearly just humoring him. Rolling his eyes, Gerard sinks down into his chair instead. “So when is the gallery show?”
“Next week,” Gerard mutters, thinking about the paintings stacked up in his studio, the ones that Frank actually agreed to pose for, and Gerard wonders if painting someone transparent should have been harder.
“And you’re actually going to be there and talk to people, right?” Mikey asks. “Because it’s your show, and sometimes people like to talk to the artist.”
“Yeah, yeah,” Gerard mumbles. So he prefers to stay home? So what? Home is nice.
Mikey nods slowly. “Maybe you should bring a date.”
“A date?” Gerard stares slightly. He hasn’t been on a date in god knows how many months. He can’t remember the last time he went on one. He certainly hasn’t been with anyone since he realized Frank could float through walls and locked doors. It’s made things slightly difficult when he just needs relief and he ends up thinking about Frank with his hand shoved down under his boxers. It’s sort of awkward to be thinking about a ghost who could float in at any moment.
Luckily, Frank seems to understand the personal space thing pretty well, and has only surprised Gerard a few times in the shower.
“Yeah, like a living, breathing person,” Mikey says. “You do remember what those are? Not a ghost.”
Gerard glares. “Yes, I know.”
Mikey only shrugs, reaching for the cinnamon on the table. “Just making sure you can still tell the difference.”
Gerard is never telling Mikey anything about his life again.
Gerard is always frazzled before gallery shows because people call and he doesn’t know what to tell any of them. His agent calls repeatedly, so much that he nearly throws his phone in a jar of paint, but Frank is there, whispering soothing things into his ear about how he should channel his frustration into painting, which he does, and it turns out pretty well considering it’s an abstract piece about strangling a phone.
“You shouldn’t freak out,” Frank tells him as he hovers near the studio door, away from where Gerard is flinging blue paint at the canvas. It’s already in his hair and covering his fingertips, but he just frowns as he glances over at Frank.
“Easy for you to say,” he mutters. “You’re dead.”
Frank quirks a smile. “Wasn’t always. And I know it sucks, but think of afterwards.”
“When I can come back here and pretend I didn’t spend a day schmoozing people who don’t give a fuck about art?” Gerard asks, rubbing his forehead tiredly and smearing more paint over his face.
Frank drifts over, and Gerard imagines that if he could actually touch things, he might be hugging him, but as it is, he just pauses next to Gerard.
“After you make a ton of money on your awesome paintings and everybody wishes they were as awesome as you,” he says warmly instead, and Gerard catches his smile.
“Are you actually a muse spirit or something?” he asks and Frank grins.
“Nope, just a regular, run-of-the-mill ghost, trying to make life a little easier.”
Gerard raises a skeptical eyebrow, but Frank just smiles at him and he sighs.
“Okay, so after everyone tells me I’m awesome, what do I do?”
There are a lot of things Gerard has never asked Frank, and granted he’s only know Frank for about four months, but he thinks there are things he wants to know. He wants to know what it’s like to die, if it really hurts, if there’s some sort of catch to coming back as a ghost. But he doesn’t ask because as much as he wants to know, Frank doesn’t ever talk about his death, and whenever Gerard hints about it, he usually changes the subject and doesn’t answer.
Sometimes, late at night when Gerard can’t sleep, Frank will lie on the bed, like he can almost feel the warmth of the covers. Gerard’s not sure what he can feel and what he can’t, or if he can feel anything. Sometimes, Frank will stay up with him – he’s not sure if Frank sleeps either – and listen to him talk about all the strange things he thinks about, like vampires and zombies, his irrational fear of needles, how when he was younger, he and Mikey used to play hide and seek in his grandmother’s basement, how he’d gotten stuck in an old box once filled with musty clothes and they didn’t find him for hours. It’s stupid since Gerard knows that Frank is a ghost and he can’t do anything except listen and offer his opinion, but it makes him feel less alone, and he knows it’s stupid, but sometimes, he really wishes he had met Frank when Frank was alive, because he’s pretty sure it would have been awesome.
As it is, Frank is transparent and spends his time drifting around the apartment aimlessly, never leaving when Gerard does, and always there when he gets back.
The night of the gallery show, Frank watches Gerard pull on a nice jacket and jeans, forgoing the uncomfortable shoes and just wearing his paint-splattered converse instead. It’s his show; he should be comfortable.
“You look awesome,” Frank says, and Gerard thinks he hears a hint of longing in Frank’s voice, but Frank just smiles at him in the mirror and Gerard wants to ask about ghosts and mirrors but he doesn’t, turning around.
“Yeah?” he asks uncertainly. He doesn’t like dressing up. Hell, he doesn’t even like dressing at all and he’d lounge around all day in his pajamas if he actually lived alone.
“Yeah,” Frank echoes firmly. “You’re gonna sell a million paintings.”
“I’m only showing forty,” Gerard replies, but Frank rolls his eyes fondly.
Gerard doesn’t correct him as he sweeps his hair back uselessly when it falls back almost automatically. “Okay,” he says finally. “I think I’m ready.”
“Go sell those pictures,” Frank says as he turns from the mirror. “And be careful crossing streets.”
Gerard doesn’t ask what that means as he stuffs his wallet in his back pocket and leaves, locking the door behind him.
“You didn’t bring a date.”
Gerard wants to scowl, but Mikey is arching a knowing eyebrow as if he expected it to happen, and really, he should have. Gerard never said he would bring someone. He has no one to bring anyway, and the one person he would have liked to have brought is see-through and currently hovering over his couch, not to mention he can’t do what he wants with him.
“I brought myself,” he replies instead. “That’s enough.”
Mikey doesn’t roll his eyes, but he nods through the crowd at Jepha over by one of the paintings.
“Jepha brought a new guy,” he only says. “Someone from work.”
“A new toy?” Gerard asks dully because Jepha always seems to have one.
“Just a friend,” Mikey replies. “Apparently.”
The guy standing next to Jepha looks a little bored to be honest, and Gerard doesn’t blame him. Art isn’t for everyone, especially when they get dragged there against their will. Although Gerard would like to think that his art isn’t as boring as some of those impressionist artists who stick a can on a pedestal and call it art.
“You should go talk to him,” Mikey says and Gerard knows it’s a push, and he doesn’t need a push, okay? He’s perfectly content with the way his life is going even if he doesn’t ever see anyone other than Frank and Mikey.
“I don’t want to talk to him,” Gerard just says, but when Mikey just shrugs and his gaze strays across the room to Pete on the other side, he knows it’s only a matter of time before there’s a plan to get him and the guy together.
Bert isn’t a bad guy, and actually, Gerard kind of thinks he’s pretty hot, which might explain how they end up stumbling up the stairs to his apartment, Bert’s hands pawing at his belt before they even get to his hallway.
Bert pushes him up against the wall, a little rougher than Gerard is used to, a dark gleam in his eyes as he tugs at Gerard’s belt, the clink loud in the empty hall as he gets it apart.
“Bert,” Gerard gasps as Bert goes for his neck, biting down hard, so hard there’ll definitely be a mark the next day, sucking hard as Gerard tries to remember that they’re still in the hallway and he may not know his neighbors very well, but he’s pretty sure they’d be upset if they walked out and found him having sex in the hallway.
Bert pulls away for only a second, hands moving to the zipper on his jeans and pulling the button undone.
“Jepha said you weren’t adventurous, but I think he was wrong.”
Gerard jumps as Bert’s hand shoved into his jeans and he gropes helplessly at the doorknob to his apartment.
“Yeah,” he breathes, fumbling to pull the door open as Bert returns to his neck, sucking a dark bruise against the skin.
When they finally stumble in, Gerard slams the door shut, tugging Bert in after him, breaking him away from his neck. Bert doesn’t seem to care, lunging at Gerard as they trip over the couch, falling backwards onto it, Bert on top as he kisses Gerard hard, hand digging into his jeans still until Gerard gasps and arches up.
“Bert,” he mutters around Bert’s mouth, breaking away to pant for breath and look down as Bert grins darkly, hand wrapping around his cock and stroking once.
Mouth falling open, Gerard lets his head fall back against the arm of the couch, eyes closing as Bert tugs his jeans down quickly, jerking roughly until they slide down a few inches and his hand is back.
“Fuck,” Gerard breathes, eyes fluttering open at Bert’s mouth, his tongue swirling down his stomach, pressing bites to his skin, trailing down his thighs quickly. Bert’s an impatient man.
It isn’t until Bert’s mouth finally encloses around him that Gerard sees him.
Frank is hovering in the doorway to the kitchen, arms crossed and a very unamused expression on his face as he watches unblinkingly.
Gerard’s eyes widen and he curses under his breath. “Shit.”
Frank doesn’t move, eyes narrowed as he just stands there and watches.
Flushing with embarrassment, Gerard struggles to sit up, pulling Bert off him.
“What?” Bert asks, wiping his mouth almost as an afterthought and Gerard feels a clench in his gut. He’s glad Bert can’t see Frank because Gerard is pretty sure if Frank could touch things, he’d be strangling Bert right now.
“I-I,” Gerard says, glancing back to where Frank’s mouth is in a thin line but he doesn’t say anything, glaring. “I can’t do this.”
Bert gives him a strange look. “What?”
Struggling up, Gerard zips up his jeans and backs away from the couch. “Sorry, I-I just can’t.”
Bert still looks confused as fuck as he pushes himself up, glancing at the way Gerard is obviously hard, and he pauses.
“I thought you were weird,” he says after a minute, sweeping his lanky hair back, “but I didn’t think it was this weird.”
Gerard doesn’t reply, licking his lips and feeling horribly awkward about the whole situation, especially considering Frank hasn’t said a word and his arms are still crossed.
When Gerard doesn’t say anything, Bert scoffs and rolls his eyes. “Call me if you ever get less weird,” he only says as he lets himself out, the door shutting behind him a little harder than it might normally.
Letting out a breath, Gerard turns to Frank, but Frank has already vanished from the doorway. Gerard doesn’t see him the rest of the time he takes a shower and jerks off because he was hard, but it’s not Bert he’s thinking about when he comes, one hand propped against the wall to keep himself upright. He lets the water wash away all evidence of his slip and redresses in silence, no sign of Frank anywhere.
When he crawls into bed, he can’t help thinking about the look on Frank’s face, tempered anger like all he wanted to do was tear Bert’s head from his body. Rolling over, he tries not to wonder what that means because, as he reminds himself for the millionth time since he moved in, Frank is dead and dead people don’t make good boyfriends.
The next morning, Gerard makes coffee like normal, waiting for the smell, or the sound at least, to draw Frank out of wherever he’s hiding. He takes his time waiting by the pot, listening to it percolate and pouring it into his mug. He doesn’t know why he’s so worried, but Frank has never been mad at him before and he doesn’t like it.
Eventually, Frank appears in the kitchen doorway, hovering lower to the ground than normal, a sort of flat expression on his face as though he knows what Gerard is doing.
Gerard never thought having a ghost in the house could be so much trouble.
“Hey,” he greets him quietly when Frank doesn’t speak but just sort of hovers in the doorway sullenly. “Frank,” he says after a minute but Frank shakes his head.
“Sorry about last night,” he says, although he doesn’t really sound sorry, and he isn’t looking at Gerard. He still has the rip in his shirt and he’s raking his hair back. Gerard’s pretty sure that if Frank slept, he wouldn’t have last night. “Didn’t mean to interrupt anything.”
Gerard isn’t sure if Frank is still mad or if he’s actually apologizing. Either way, he’s not sure how to reply.
“Uh,” he says instead while Frank shifts his weight and finally glances at him.
“You’re meeting Mikey today?” he asks instead, and Gerard pauses.
Frank nods slowly. “Watch out for busses.”
Gerard doesn’t understand why Frank keeps giving him useless warnings, but he takes it as a good sign that Frank isn’t yelling at him for the night before. He knows he shouldn’t feel ashamed because it’s not like Frank is really there, not like they’re in some sort of relationship, although if Gerard actually pauses to think about it, they probably kind of are.
“Sure,” he just mutters instead, wondering why everything feels like a marital spat that he can’t explain.
Frank doesn’t say anything more, just casts him one last glance before drifting the other way.
Lunch with Mikey is just the same as always except that when he asks about Bert, all Gerard can do is shrug and mumble a vague answer.
“But he actually liked you,” Mikey says like he can’t believe how much of a loser Gerard is, and really, it should be no surprise. They did grow up together.
Gerard can’t tell Mikey that it got interrupted by his ghost roommate because all he’ll get is a skeptical look and a resigned sigh.
Instead, he just shrugs into his coffee, frowning at the bottom of the mug. He hears Mikey’s sigh but tries to ignore it. It isn’t like he has a particularly exciting life and one guy wasn’t going to change that.
Well, one guy who’s actually alive. A dead guy on the other hand…
After lunch, Mikey just gives Gerard a disbelieving shake of his head. “You should really try to get out more,” he says as they stand on the sidewalk and the light turns from red to green. “Maybe you’d have more friends than an imaginary ghost.”
“He’s not imaginary,” Gerard tries to argue but the woman next to him is giving him a strange look so he just scowls as Mikey shrugs.
“Either way. You should go out more.”
“Thanks,” Gerard mutters. “Same time next week?”
Mikey nods easily. “Maybe you should bring a date.”
“Shut up,” Gerard just mumbles, turning to cross the street to the subway station on the other side.
“Gerard!” Mikey calls sharply, eyes wide when Gerard steps out and pauses to look back. The last thing he sees is a yellow taxi screeching towards him until everything goes dark around him.
Gerard’s head feels as though somebody took a jackhammer to it, or like that time after the New Years’ party in college when he’d woken up with a hangover to end all hangovers. This isn’t like a hangover, though. This is like ringing and hammering and pounding all combined and he wonders where the hell the extra extra strength Tylenol is.
As he sits up, he realizes he’s in his apartment on the couch. He thinks that the least Mikey could have done was take him to the hospital because obviously he’d had some sort of head trauma, if the throbbing pain in his temples is anything to go by.
“Gerard!” Frank’s voice is entirely too loud as Gerard winces in pain and Frank immediately quiets. “Oh, right.”
“Right what?” Gerard mumbles, wondering why his head hurts so much. The rest of him feels fine except the hems of his pants are ripped and his shoes are more scuffed than usual.
“Your head,” Frank says like he knows the pain now pounding in his temples. “Hurts, right?”
“Yeah,” Gerard grumbles. “Where is the aspirin?”
Frank only smiles, and Gerard thinks it’s a little mean to be laughing at his pain right now.
“You don’t need aspirin,” Frank tells him, drifting over to the couch and hovering in a sitting position next to him. He hesitates a second before reaching out.
Gerard expects his hand to go right through him like it usually does when Frank accidentally moves through him instead of around him, but this time, he can feel the press of calloused fingers against his skin, a hand on his forehead.
“How are you—” he asks, confused and amazed since he’s never been able to feel Frank before. “How did you do that?”
Frank pauses before giving him a sad look. “Gerard, I hate to be the one to tell you this but… you’re dead.”
Gerard stares. “Dead?” he echoes dimly. “What do you mean ‘dead’?”
Frank pauses. “I mean you’re dead, gone, worm food, dust in the wind.”
Gerard still stares. “What are you talking about? I can’t be dead.”
“Sure you can,” Frank replies, moving his hand down, and Gerard can feel the touch on his skin, sort of glowingly warm, and he’s pretty sure ghosts don’t feel warmth.
“No, I’m not dead,” Gerard replies as though Frank is crazy, as though the fact that he can feel Frank is just a weird coincidence to go along with the piercing headache.
Frank just sighs. “You are. You wanna know how I know?”
Gerard doesn’t believe him and he scoffs as he tries to climb up from the couch, but his hands don’t push off the cushions at all and his legs aren’t quite moving the right way.
Frank watches him struggle. “There’s a reason only you can see me, you know,” he says finally, and Gerard glances back at him, still trying to figure out what’s wrong and why he can’t move. “You can only see me because only people who are about to die can see ghosts.”
Gerard’s face transforms into a disbelieving frown. “You’re crazy.”
“No, you’re dead,” Frank replies simply, taking Gerard’s arm and pulling him up. Gerard flails for a second, but when he looks down, he sees that his feet aren’t touching the ground and that’s when he starts to get scared.
“What do you mean I’m dead?” he demands now, ignoring Frank’s sympathetic look.
“I mean you got hit by a taxi and you died,” Frank says. “I warned you.”
“You warned me about busses!” Gerard cries semi-hysterically. He can’t possibly be dead, and if he’s dead, why is he still there? Why are his feet hovering inches over the floor and why are his legs transparent? He can see the wood floor through them now. This is just wrong.
He’s surprised as Frank pulls him into a hug, and it’s just like he imagined it would always be, sort of warm and all-encompassing, Frank pressed against him, arms squeezing tightly.
“I’m sorry,” Frank murmurs into his shirt. “I didn’t want you to die. I tried to help.”
Gerard is still confused as fuck and none of this is making sense. He’s trying to calm himself down, trying to figure out exactly what’s going on and why it feels so good with Frank wrapped around him.
Swallowing, he tries to calm down. “So if I’m dead,” he says finally, forcing the word out. “Why am I still here? Shouldn’t I have moved on or something?”
Frank pulls back after a second, pausing as if considering his answer. “Some people don’t move on,” he replies after a minute. “Sometimes they stick around for other reasons.”
“I don’t have a reason,” Gerard argues. He doesn’t have anything to stick around for except maybe to tell Mikey goodbye. Oh God, Mikey. “Oh God, Mikey,” he says, suddenly stricken.
“He’s okay,” Frank assures him. “Well, not okay, but okay enough, you know?”
“No.” Gerard shakes his head. “Can I see him?”
Frank hesitates. “Can you move?”
Gerard tries. He can move his arms finally but his legs are a different story. With nothing to push off of, he goes nowhere.
“What’s wrong?” he asks, confused, and Frank sighs.
“It takes a while to figure out,” he just says. “It’s like relearning how to walk.”
Gerard wonders why he couldn’t have just moved on. Groaning, he lets his arms fall limply to his sides.
“I’m dead,” he says finally. “I’m dead.”
Frank gives him a sad look. “Yeah, but you’re still here.”
“Well, what does that mean?” Gerard asks, frustrated.
Frank pauses, biting his lip, and Gerard bets he could feel the lip ring now. Shaking away that thought, he tells himself that this is the exact wrong time to be thinking about Frank’s piercings.
“Gee,” he says finally, slowly. “I know this is probably a bad time since you just died and all, but it’s not like you have anywhere to go.”
Gerard frowns. Even if he is dead, he doesn’t want to be reminded. He just keeps thinking about Mikey and his parents and his art. What is he going to do with all his art?
“I kinda wanted to tell you for a while,” Frank continues, “but it was stupid ‘cause I couldn’t even touch you, but now that you’re a ghost… well, now, it’s different.”
“What is?” Gerard asks, confused when Frank drifts closer and Gerard really wishes he could figure out how to move on his own.
“I can touch you now,” Frank says, reaching out and grazing a hand down his arm. He pauses, licking his lips. “And ghosts can’t feel real warmth, but we can feel the glow from other ghosts. I can feel you now.” He glances up at Gerard, who still feels confused, but he can feel a tingle of nerves on his skin and he wonders if ghosts can even feel things like that. Now is not the time to be contemplating the intricacies of ghosts, however, as Frank drifts even closer and he can’t move. “And I’ve wanted to do this pretty much since I met you.”
Gerard doesn’t ask what because Frank is leaning in and kissing him, and Gerard thinks that maybe he should die more often if he actually gets to do this with Frank.
He kisses Frank back, noticing that Frank somehow hovers higher to get their heights right, one hand twined in his hair as he kisses him hard, like he’s wanted to do this forever and never could, which, Gerard thinks, is probably true.
“Shit,” Gerard mutters when Frank pulls back, breathing against his bottom lip, and somehow, Gerard can feel it, although he’s pretty sure he’s not supposed to be able to. He takes a shaky breath when Frank moves back, fingers loosening in his hair. He smiles slightly, licking his lips again.
Gerard isn’t sure what he’s supposed to be feeling since he just found out that he’s dead. But Frank is still there, and Frank just kissed him, and Frank is giving him that look that Bert gave him the other day except there’s less predatory gleam and more genuine care.
“I wanted to do that too,” he admits after a second, and Frank’s smile widens.
“I knew when you died I could finally tell you, but I still didn’t want you to die,” he replies quietly. “Nobody really deserves to die for nothing.”
Gerard frowns. “Death by taxi. What a great headline.”
“I’m sure Mikey will think of something better to put on your headstone,” Frank assures him with a nod, and Gerard feels that same sinking feeling in his stomach. He wishes he could sit down but it doesn’t seem to be working as he glances sadly at the couch.
“I can’t believe I’m dead,” he says again. “And you knew it was gonna happen the whole time?”
Frank looks apologetic. “Whenever someone sees me, it always means they’re gonna die. I can’t help it. I think it’s just a force of supernatural nature or something.”
Rubbing his hands through his hair, Gerard sighs. “But what happens?” he asks. “Is this it?”
Frank shrugs. “It’s different for everyone, I guess. I don’t really know. I’ve only known two other people like you.”
“What about when you died?” Gerard thinks he’s allowed to ask now that he’s dead too.
Frank sort of shrugs again. “I don’t know. When I died, I was kind of like, ‘this is it?’ and that was it. My friends came to my apartment and cleaned out my stuff and I couldn’t talk to them at all. It sucked, but there’s nothing you can do. The best thing is to just accept it. The bright side is you don’t have to worry about anything anymore.”
Gerard doesn’t really see how that helps at all, but he sighs.
Frank gives him a small smile. “Hey, it’s gonna be okay. You’ve still got me.”
Gerard laughs slightly, thinking that Frank’s all he’s had for a while now, he just didn’t realize it until it was too late.
“So the other day with Bert,” he says after a minute and Frank frowns at the memory. “Were you jealous?”
Scoffing, Frank shakes his head. “No, Bert was disgusting.”
“He was pretty hot,” Gerard points out but Frank’s expression darkens.
“Well, you aren’t the only person who lives in this apartment,” he points out moodily.
“You’re dead!” Gerard says with an obvious look.
“Well, so are you!” Frank replies.
“Not then, I wasn’t!” Gerard says indignantly. “Then I was a guy who hadn’t had sex in, like, a year.”
“Really?” Frank asks curiously, and Gerard immediately flushes.
“Yeah,” he mutters finally, “and now I’m dead, right? So I guess I’m never gonna have it again.”
Frank pauses, a smile tugging at the corner of his mouth. “Weren’t you listening before?”
“To the part about Bert being disgusting?”
Frank shakes his head, pulling Gerard closer. Gerard still feels unbalanced as he drifts forward into Frank. “To the part about ghosts and mutual senses of touch.” His hand is wrapped around Gerard’s arm and he somehow maneuvers Gerard down so he’s hovering over the couch in a sitting position. Gerard will definitely have to ask him how to do it later.
As for now, Frank is straddling him and it doesn’t even feel like they’re hovering. He can feel Frank’s weight on top of him, and he doesn’t really want to think about the physics of this because he was never good at science or math and this surely can’t make any sense.
“We can do everything other people can but only together. Make sense?”
“No,” Gerard replies honestly because it doesn’t, but he kind of doesn’t care when Frank leans in, placing kisses to his throat, working his way down. He can feel the cold scrape of his lip ring and he wonders how that’s possible, but it doesn’t matter when Frank nips at his neck, tongue sliding over the dip between his collar bone.
Frank shifts on top of him, an impression of weight over Gerard, and it doesn’t matter that it’s more an illusion than the real thing.
“I can touch you,” Frank mutters, fingers sliding under Gerard’s transparent shirt, rough pads gliding over his skin and Gerard really wishes he had met Frank when they both were alive, but this was going to have to do. “I can kiss you.” The kiss he presses to Gerard’s neck is wet and open-mouthed, tongue slicking up his skin as he licks up to his ear, biting the lobe while Gerard shifts underneath him. He won’t admit that he’s thought about this pretty much since he woke up that first morning and fell out of bed at the sight of Frank. “I can feel you getting hard.”
Frank grins deviously as he reaches down and cups Gerard through his torn jeans, and Gerard groans softly, thinking that none of this even really makes sense. He’s never been a logical thinker, but this is just too weird even for him.
“How—” he tries to ask, but Frank shakes his head, using his free hand to tilt Gerard’s head back, licking his bottom lip slowly as he presses forward with his hips.
“Stop thinking about it,” he murmurs, teeth scraping over his skin as he sucks on Gerard’s bottom lip. “You don’t need to worry about anything anymore. Death is actually a lot better than most people think.”
Gerard doesn’t question that, although he wants to, but Frank’s hand is digging into his cock, rocking forward, and he can’t help but push up into the touch, thinking that – dead or not – it has been a fucking long time.
“Frank,” he mutters against his mouth, tongue flicking out to lick at Frank’s lip ring as he pushes up, needing more, more.
“Yeah, fuck,” Frank whispers back, untangling his hand from Gerard’s hair to undo the zipper and shove the jeans halfway down his thighs. When Gerard glances up, Frank just shrugs. “Can’t take things off all the way. Doesn’t work like that.”
“You’ve had experience?” Gerard asks, and he wonders who the other two ghosts Frank had met were. It must show because Frank quirks an eyebrow.
“Just because I can’t breathe or eat anymore doesn’t mean I don’t still want to have a steak,” he says. “Doesn’t mean watching you get dressed doesn’t make me want to fuck you so hard you’d moan my name and your neighbors would think you were crazy.”
Gerard sort of stares, but Frank’s hand is working its way under his underwear, warm fingers wrapping around his hard prick, and he laughs finally, sort of embarrassed.
“They already do,” he admits, and Frank smiles, stretching up for a kiss that starts out slow and quick, but turns hard and dirty as Gerard drags him back when he tries to pull away.
“Thought so,” Frank replies, shoving Gerard’s underwear down and starting to stroke.
Gerard doesn’t care if this is real or not; it feels good and he can’t remember the last time he had a guy as hot as Frank jerking him off.
“Here,” he mutters as Frank licks a line down his palm and reaches back. Gerard stutters as he reaches forward for Frank’s pants, pulling the button undone and shoving his hand underneath. When Frank gasps, he takes it as a good sign and wonders just how long it’s been for Frank too.
“Fuck,” Frank pants, thrusting into Gerard’s hand as he tries to keep up the pace with his own hand. His mouth is pressed against Gerard’s neck, open and hot as he pushes forward with his hips and strokes down with his hand all at the same time.
Gerard tries to keep focus, but things are sort of spinning when Frank’s grip tightens and he bites back a moan, pushing up into his grip and almost stalling out on Frank until Frank grunts and thrusts forward again.
“Sorry, sorry,” Gerard pants but Frank cuts him off with a kiss, mouth dragging against his, biting his bottom lip and sucking hard. He just pushes forward, thrusting into Gerard’s lax grip as Gerard tries to keep up when Frank squeezes around his dick and he feels the sharp tightening in his stomach.
“Just, shit,” Frank mumbles, jerking Gerard off as quickly as he can, and Gerard feels everything going fuzzy as he pulls back from the kiss, gasping for air that he can’t breathe and feeling the same illusion of release except that nothing happens. He feels the tighten and release, the strength and the fulfillment but nothing happens, and Frank doesn’t pull away, biting at his jaw.
Shaking himself, Gerard decides not to focus on it as he smoothes his thumb down Frank’s length and Frank shudders against him, a low whine caught in the back of his throat as he reaches his high and comes down slowly. It’s surreal, Gerard thinks, when he pulls his hand back and it’s completely clean. He supposes that’s what Frank meant about mutual senses.
“Fuck,” Frank mutters against Gerard’s cheek. “That’s so much better than jerking off alone.”
Gerard doesn’t know what to say to that, so he remains silent, feeling Frank’s weight sinking against him still, warm and comforting, which is nice when he starts to think about his death again. He supposes that he really shouldn’t but there are things he should have done, people he should have talked to; mostly Mikey.
Frank must sense what he’s thinking because he wraps himself around Gerard somehow, and Gerard is glad there’s no post-coital stickiness to ruin the moment.
“Being dead isn’t so bad,” he murmurs. “And I kinda lied. I can leave the apartment, I just didn’t want to.”
Gerard frowns slightly but isn’t really upset that Frank lied. “How did you die?” he asks finally because he thinks he deserves to know now.
Sighing, Frank’s arms tighten. “Jersey mafia.”
Gerard is silent for a moment before he laughs and Frank scowls.
“Shut up,” he says. “It’s true.”
Gerard tries to stop laughing, grinning at Frank now. “Seriously?”
Frank nods. “I was a waiter and I caught them doing a deal. I was a goner after that.”
“Is that why you stuck around?” Gerard asks finally because he can’t really figure out why he’s still around. He doesn’t have any unfinished business.
Frank shrugs. “Who knows. The world works in mysterious ways.”
“Do you think I have some other weird reason for still being here?” Gerard asks after a moment and Frank glances up at him.
“Are you a vampire or any other undead creature?”
“Not that I know of.”
Frank pauses then shrugs. “Maybe it’s just what’s supposed to happen, being a ghost and all.” He leans back against Gerard, and Gerard thinks that maybe this is why he’s still here. Finally, he just sighs.
“Ghosts are overrated,” he mutters, and Frank just laughs, holding tighter.