Rate: PG-13 for language?
Disclaimer: I don’t own Brothers and Sisters, but Alex Grodin is a figment of MY own sick mind.
Summary: The boys realize that they need to talk. Resistance is futile.
Writer's note: It helps if you know my series: Happy now? and Last Christmas
Kevin stares at the night-sky. It’s a very clear night and he can see the stars. With all the lights in his own neighborhood it’s sometimes hard to remember how many stars there are in the sky, but, here, the night is still dark and Kevin finds them as fascinating now, as he did when he was a child.
The porch gives a good view of the valley that stretches out below them and Kevin enjoys the cold night-air. His coat is very warm and the cold can only penetrate his body through his jeans on the spot where’s he sitting on the wooden ledge. He hears the door open and smiles when he sees his husband walk up to him.
“I thought I find you here.” Scotty says, handing Kevin something hot to drink. Kevin figures it’s one of those health concoctions of Scotty’s, but takes a sip nonetheless. It’s tea, some herbal tea, with lots of sugar… and he starts to feel all warm inside.
“Thought you could use some ‘comfort’-sugar.” Scotty jokes.
“Thank you. I really did.” Kevin laughs… “Any news?”
“From the hospital? No… How are you doing?”
“Don’t know. I honestly don’t know. I’ve been sitting here, looking at all those lights in the valley and I feel numb.
I spoke to him a few hours ago and told him I would leave. I meant what I said. I did leave. I thought I had made up my mind. And then he tries to kill himself and ... I have all these doubts to deal with.
There’s a lawyer in my head yelling that I’m responsible. That my cold way of just walking out on him, triggered his suicide-attempt…. There’s the opposition begging to differ that he’s responsible for his own actions and that he’s caused me enough trouble. And then, lawyer number 1 reminds me, that Alex used to be my best buddy.
To which lawyer number 2 protests that he’s a murderer who killed innocent people, nearly killed the man I love and left two of my exes to die…”
“Sounds like there’s a lot of fun to be had up there in your head.”
“Yeah… great!” Kevin replies sarcastically.
“Which side is winning?”
“They both make a good case.”
“Which one shouts the loudest?”
“They are both vocal and articulate and putting a very good guilt-trip on me.”
“So, you’re the judge…. What do you think he will decide?”
“That he wants a ten-minute recess because he has a splitting head-ache?” Kevin’s immediate reply makes Scotty laugh and a little smile curls around Kevin’s lips as well.
“Hey.” A voice says and Chad joins them, followed by Jason.
“Still up?” Kevin asks.
“Yeah. Couldn’t sleep without knowing how it turned out for Alex… Not that I’m concerned about him. But I am worried about you, Kevin Walker.”
“That is sweet, Chad, but not necessary. I … I just don’t know what to do. Should I stay here? Should I go over there? One moment I feel like I made the right choice to stay here, the next I feel like such a traitor.” Kevin shakes his head. Jason moves closer.
“Kevin? Are you staying here because of us? Do you think we’d get mad if you would want to see Alex in the hospital?”
“Would you be mad, if I did?” Kevin immediately questions in return.
“Kev, please, don’t do that. Don’t answer a question with a question.”
“I know you hate that, Jason, but … I haven’t exactly analyzed myself any further. I haven’t figured out which percentage can be given to what thought.” Kevin feels annoyed. "I can't win this. Regardless of what I do, there’s just no ‘good’ choice."
“Let’s go.” Chad says.
“To the hospital. Listen, if it would have been any other friend, you’d be there for him. We are not the persons who can judge here. We didn’t have any other relationship with him other than that of victim-aggressor.” Chad’s words make sense.
“But I decided this afternoon…”
“You decided with your mind, not your heart. Obviously a piece of your heart is still there with him…” Scotty simply states. Kevin looks miserable.
“I don’t want you think that… you’re ‘irrelevant’.”
“So, this is about us…? Good, now let’s go. We’re going to get you to the hospital…”
“Jason will drive. You’re getting in the back, with Scotty. … I will not let you make a choice that you don’t agree with deep in your heart, because you consider my feelings and not your own…”
Sheriff Styles looks up when he sees Chad and Kevin, followed by Scotty and Jason get off the elevator.
“Hi, boys. Decided to come here anyway, huh?”
“We were in the neighborhood.” Chad shrugs. “Any news?”
“Yes, as of 15 minutes ago, Alex’s situation has been upgraded to ‘satisfactorily’. He’s still on the IC where people can keep an eye on him, but he seems to be pulling though.”
“That is news…. I’m not sure if it’s good or bad.” Kevin mumbles.
“Do you want to see him?”
“Yes.” Kevin replies, though his mind screams ‘no!’. The sheriff points out where Kevin has to go and once Kevin pushes away the curtain, he sees Alex there, in a deep sleep. Again Kevin is sad about how thin and lonely Alex looks in the large bed. The machines are beeping all around him. He closes his eyes.
They let themselves fall on the sand. Their bodies wet and tired from swimming in the sea.
“Hungry?” Kevin grins, sticking a sandwich Nora made, in Alex’s direction.
“Could eat a horse.” Alex replies.
“Kitty would kill you if you did.”
“Yeah? Well, warn me if she’s flying back home.” Alex grins. Kevin laughs and lies down on his belly to let the sun warm his back.
Alex remains seated, looking at Kevin with only one eye open, because the sun on the sand is too bright and he forgot his sunglasses in the car.
“Will it be like this forever?” Alex asks, just before Kevin falls asleep.
“Us. You and me.”
“Who else will have me?” Kevin grins.
“Or me.” Alex admits. “If you could have better friends than me, would you dump me?”
He promised. He once made a promise. When he was 17 years old. And now he just stares at the head on the pillow and he's reminded of that promise. For a few moments he only looks at Alex, then he walks up to the bed and places his hand on Alex’s. It feels cold. As cold as Kevin feels inside.
Earlier this day there had still been a bit of hurt, fear, sadness, maybe even a twinge of that promise he hyad made so long ago, but now there’s nothing. He relaxes in a way that he had been unable to earlier.
He studies Alex. The large curls fall around a face that, now that it’s relaxed, show lines that make him older than he really is. The frown is a discontent one. He has stopped being this larger than life character, someone to be afraid of. Instead, Kevin suddenly feels sorry for Alex.
He feels sorry because Alex could have been so much more, and now will never become who he could have been… But at the same time, that is as far as Kevin’s sorrow goes. The man in this bed is a stranger to him, like he is a stranger to Alex. They lost each other a long time ago…
Kevin bends over, kisses Alex on his forehead and whispers:
“Goodbye, Alex…. I hope you will find peace some day,… but it won’t be with me.”
And with those words he leaves Alex behind to join the others. When he approaches the waiting area, he stops.
He watches quietly for a moment how Chad reads his magazine and Scotty plays with his coat, while Jason brings them coffee. He watches Scotty’s grateful smile, sees how Jason says something that make both Chad and Scotty laugh. They sit together and talk. Kevin sighs.
“If you could have better friends than me, would you dump me?” No, Kevin would not have, but Alex had. Alex had looked for something else... He's the one that left and left Kevin alone... But he's no longer alone. He has a husband and he has friends. So, he's better off than Alex could ever be.
“Hey!” He joins them at their table… “Can we go home?”
“What about Alex?” Scotty asks.
“He’ll probably make it. He’s one tough cookie…. But I won’t be here when he wakes up. The judge has decided.
I’m moving on. I don’t know in how far I’m responsible for his actions today… but, he made his own choice and I’m done. I should not have come here, but I’m glad I did… I’ve taken back the last piece of my heart he still owned. I will remember the boy he used to be… but I don’t know the man he became…”
Kevin shrugs and three others realize that Kevin has made his ultimate decision.
“Fine with me.” Chad says, getting up.
“I can live with that too.” Jason nods. Scotty doesn’t say anything, he just squeezes Kevin’s hand tightly and smiles.
END OF PART 11