„Shush, don’t move!“
Dave tries to be gentle, applying the soothing ointment around Alan’s neck yet every now and then he cringes from the discomfort he still feels.
„You’re worse than Calo as a baby boy when I tried to apply his sunscreen for the beach!“, Mart cuts in.
„And you didn’t drink your portion of ice tea so far. So here, have it now.“
Alan grumbles and reaches for the huge glass Martin passes over to him. Drinking almost half of it he sets it down next to him onto the side table. Then he whimpers a little, still feeling uncomfortable. Dave’s touches on his skin let him not only shiver from the pain. Mart returns from the en suite bathroom.
„The tub is ready, the water temperature hopefully OK – not too hot – like the doc advised.“
Both men’s eyes meet and Alan tries to hold the view. Martin shortly blinks yet can’t avert his eyes from the begging and sad gaze.
„No, don’t tell us again how sorry you are, Al. The message starts to sink in.“
Mart places the black dress robe onto the blanket, for Alan to slip in. It’s not that far to the bathroom but Alan gets the hidden message. No unnecessary exposure. David smoothes down the neck a last time and then puts away the ointment. Al grabs his moving arm.
„Dave – I...I really needed...love. You hit me so hard whe you left me...like that. If I could do anything to make you feel better...believe me, I would! The damage is done...I know.“
Alan sort of clings at his former band mate’s arm now, the desperation on his features obvious. David closes his eyes and tries to keep his composure.
For how many times did I find myself in kinda situations, having fucked up everything with everybody I loved and who cared for me? All I ever wanted was to be loved and forgiven.
„Al, move – let’s get you into the bath before it gets cold.“
Martin senses Dave’s state of mind and the uneasiness of the moment.
„Dave’s right, Alan. Give us a little space to think – and feel. Hop into the water and relax.“
When Alan finally sits in the tub he cries out in pain again – the warm water hitting his private parts.
„Oh my fucking god!!“
„The guys in the hospital told you it’s not going to be pleasant.“
Dave manages a tiny smirk.
„I thought you were into that pain thing.“ Then he turns serious again.
„Sorry for that, Al. Suppose it’s nothing I’d wish my worst adversary.“
„It gets a little better with the time.“
Alan still pulls a grimmace and tries to control his accelerated breath.
„No, don’t go – Mart, Dave...please!“
The pale man leans his head exhausted back against the cool, black tiles. Martin sits down on the bath stool while Dave gets down on his haunches and then completely sinks down onto the fluffy mat next to the bath tub – resting his back against the wall. Giving the man in the water another look-over his anger gradually changes into compassion. Alan used to be a lean, handsome guy back in the days. Meanwhile he put on some weight. Judging his swollen face it’s not just the food but for sure the booze – though Alan always stated in public he’d never be one for it as he’s so much in control of everything in his life – opposed to the other band members. He was clearly shooting arrows in Mart’s direction for his drinking habits – and himself, of course – adding all the other addictions.
„Yes, you’re right, David.“
„That I’m an ugly, stupid fatso. I know how I look and what I’ve done to get into this state. Yes, I’m a hypocrite – I’ve got a problem with alcohol for a while.“
„Me thinks that’s just part of the truth, Alan.“, Mart chimes in. „You need professional help.“
„Martin, I need my friends now. More than anything.“ He sighs and wipes some wet drops from his forehead. „Though I did more than enough to destroy all friendly feelings between us.“
Dave slightly nods. Then he cleans his throat.
„I know indeed how that feels. Honestly, I’m lost what to tell you now. My emotions are upside down. Part of me really hates you – the Alan that takes advantage and forces his control over everybody that is vulnerable enough, weak enough or blind.“
„Don’t forget naive and stupid.“, Mart adds. „It needs two for starting a real mess. And we’re not talking about a simple fight.“
„Why Hep, Alan?“
„Do you really have to ask that, Dave?“
„I want to hear it from you.“
„She was so sweet and caring till the end – I simply couldn’t stand it! I dragged her through so many horrible situations – I couldn’t see myself in her irises any longer – the monster I had become...I am. I do not deserve her affection and love. Christ, you have no idea how much I hate myself for all the things I’ve done! That goes for you two as well!“
„Do you know that Martin has written two lengthy diaries – lots of the contents dealing with his suffering from your fooking...relationship?! Or whatever you want to call what you shared. He’s still not over it!“
„No, Curly! He needs to know! It still breaks my heart. Reading all those pain filled lines, all the thoughts not shared with anyone before.“
„You really love him, do you, Dave?“
David now directly fixes Alan’s view.
„Oh yes, I do! It took me a while to realize and accept, but your ways also cemented those feelings.“
„I still do, too.“ Al turns his face towards Mart. „My heart still belongs to you, Martin. I fully understand that you can’t accept it. I tried to make my peace with it but it will never change.“
The water splashes a little when Alan shifts his position in the tub.
„All I ask of you...both of you...is for your absolution. That I can go on with my life without that burden. I can’t carry it on my own.“
„Do you really want to live, Alan – or are you waiting for the next time to succeed?“
„If that bloody knot didn’t slip...I’m not sure anymore what I was doing...thinking...feeling. It just hurts...“
„It will not get better inflicting that pain on other people. You should know that much meanwhile.“
David reaches for the large bathing sheet.
„Let’s get you out off here.“
„Is he asleep yet?“
Martin sneaks back into Alan’s bedroom. Dave adjusts the blanket while Alan’s eyes are already shut.
„No, I’m not.“
„Good. I want you to listen to this. It’s not going to be easy for me but I think you should know.“
David sees the blue diary in Mart’s hand, his fingers trembling a little.
„You knew I still carry them with me?“
„I know you, Dave.“
The blonde curly man plants a soft kiss onto his lovers right cheek and then sits down at the edge of the bed, flicking through some pages. Alan moves nervously in his pillows and stares at Mart in awe.
„This was some time back in 1993.“
I lie awake and the taste of leather still lingers on my lips – mixed with traces of my blood and your cum. You told me not to shower till the morning and I obey – as usual. I feel empty, lonely and cold. The pain in my ass slowly subsides, the scratches your nails left on my hips and thighs burn – your abscence hurts more! For sure somebody will make snark remarks concerning the large hickey below my throat – but I will just smirk and tell them that the girl was a wild kitten.
Alan, I can’t go on like this much longer. My yearning for love is so strong. I can’t have what / who I want – and what I get leaves me broken and desperate. You both – Dave and you – don’t take me serious – my emotions and feelings. OK, I’m not that verbose addressing it – I’m just not like that. You might think – and I know you do to a certain degree – that I’m weak and easy prey. You’re wrong there, Al. If I was I already was dead. Every now and then I find myself playing with these thoughts. How would it be? No more suffering, no more struggeling...no more...love. That’s the only truth that keeps me going. Love is the core of everything, the most essential thing – the last that remains when we’re long gone – the last resort and hope. As long as I can feel, give and get love I’m alive. Anything else is just a completion. Being a vegetarian I know one can easily live without meat as long there’s protein of any kind. I don’t want love of any kind, do I? Martin, you hypochrite! Sure – I’ll take all the love I can get – wherever I find it! Every human being deserves to be loved and worshipped. God, David! My heart breaks every time I see you suffering there in your bubble and I know sooner or later that bubble will burst with a terrible bang. And you Alan? You mask your feelings, too. As much as you try to act like the one in control and as much as I give in – your love is bitter and venomous...and despair is written all over it. Still – I can’t live without it.
The tears that find their way over Alan’s face are silent this time. He slightly nods.
„Thank you, Martin.“
Mart pushes Dave over to their bed in the guestroom.
„God, I need you!“
David nearly mauls him under his body when they both land on the mattress. Hastily they get rid off each others clothes. Mart’s teeth scrape along Dave’s throat and then find his hard, erect nipples. Biting down he gets a little cry out off his partner who’s busy with his hands all over his skin.