On the Road 7
by Synchronik

In the dream, Gerard doesn't really know Frank. He's met Frank a couple of times, knows his name, knows he wants to get to know Frank, but they aren't friends the way they are in real life, so when Dream Frank says "hey, you should come over here" gesturing to the door of his bedroom, Gerard feels his stomach flip and follows him into the room.

Dream Frank's room is sort of a dump. There are two beds, just mattresses on the floor, really, and an old dresser that's overflowing with clothes, and a window with a sheet thumbtacked above it. The floor is covered in clothes and papers and the other detritus that seems to gather where young men live together. Frank sits on one of the mattresses and pats the rumpled blanket. "You're cool, right?" he says.

Gerard sits. Frank leans in and is so close that all Gerard can see is flashing of Frank's eyes, the paleness of his skin, his blinding smile. They are kissing before Gerard knows it. Frank seems so happy, laughing delightedly when Gerard slips a hand under his shirt.

Gerard blinks and time has passed. It is a dream, so Gerard is not surprised by the fast forward, but he is surprised when he looks down and Frank is naked beneath him, still smiling, murmuring things in his ear. "There's a guy on one of buses," he whispers in Gerard's ear, "that I would totally give up everyone else for." His cock presses up against Gerard's (still-clothed) belly. The words make Gerard's stomach flip in a different way. This isn't the start of something, then, it's just . . . a thing. Not a start or an end, but just a moment in and of itself. It means nothing.

That's okay, Gerard thinks, but when he blinks again Frank's roommate, a guy who doesn't exist in real life, a Dream Roommate, is in the room, sitting on his own bed, changing his socks. A blond girl--his Dream Girlfriend? Gerard can't tell--is kneeling next to the bed.

"Hi, Frank," the Dream Girlfriend says.

Frank, still naked, still writhing, his arms around Gerard's neck, says "hey, honey." Gerard casts a dirty glance at her, but she ignores him, her eyes fixed on Frank's ecstatic face.

"So you're having sex, huh?" she asks.

"I'll talk to you later, okay?" Dream Frank says. He rubs his cock on Gerard's jeans, and throws his head back, seeking something he's not getting.

The Dream Girlfriend sighs. "Fine," she says, and goes over to the roommate's bed, but she's still looking at Frank, wanting him.

"Hey," Gerard murmurs. He kisses Frank's face. "Hey."

Frank looks at him.

"I don't think this is going to happen right now," Gerard says. Frank's face falls, and Gerard realizes that by saying no now, he's saying no forever, that there will be no second chance. For a moment, he considers taking it back, saying "never mind," and fucking rank right through the mattress, but the Roommate and the Dream Girlfriend are still sitting over there on the other bed, showing no signs of leaving, and this. It doesn't mean anything anyway. "I'm sorry. We could go to my room if you want," he continues, although he knows it's hopeless.

He blinks again, and he and Frank are in the ruins of an old office building, bored, looking for something to do. It is some time after the incident on the bed, Gerard can tell. They haven't had sex, and yet, here Gerard is, still hanging around, waiting for the scraps Dream Frank might throw to him. It is a position Gerard is familiar with from real life, so he doesn't fight it. There's no point.

But the weather is bad, there's a storm outside, and he and Frank need to get somewhere, to some place safe, to shelter. "Frank," he says.

"I want to go out," Frank says. He seems sad. "I'm going out."

"There's a tornado," Gerard says, but when he looks through the cracked and decaying walls there is not one tornado, but three, all in different directions, different strengths.

"I'm going out," Frank says, and heads out through a crack in the wall. Gerard runs after him. Outside, the tornados are still swirling, but they seem to be heading away from the city (what city? Gerard does not know), and Frank is walking away on wet pavement.

"Hey," Gerard says, running up behind Frank and putting his arm around Frank's shoulders. His stomach flips. "It's going to be okay," Gerard says, but there's something about this Frank, Dream Frank, that's broken and cannot be fixed.

Gerard wakes up.

He went to bed at nine, worn out by a day of radio promotions and a week on the bus, but it's not morning, yet. He can tell from the murmur of the guys in the lounge that it's still nighttime, maybe not even midnight. Everyone else is awake.

Gerard pushes himself out of his bunk and staggers to the lounge.

"Hey," Frank says. He's sitting on the couch with a videogame controller. He and Bob are video bowling.

"Hey," Gerard says, sitting down next to him. He feels dizzy. Frank was just naked. He remembers the feeling of Frank's cock in his hand.

"Are you okay, man?" Frank asks.

Gerard shakes his head. "I had a dream," he says.

"Aww," Frank says. He hooks his arm around Gerard's waist and tips his head to Gerard's shoulder for a second. It's a sweet gesture, but it means nothing really. It never does. Frank's never been naked beneath him. Gerard wonders if there's a boy on a bus somewhere that Frank would give up everyone else for. "It's okay now," Frank says. His hand strokes Gerard's side.

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