Disclaimer: B&S doesn’t belong to me. Written with love, not for money.
Summary: The Martian Tape.
Scotty unpacks yet another box. Kevin looks on with growing curiosity. Since they decided Scotty should move in with Kevin, Scotty has slowly been retrieving his remaining properties, that didn’t fit in the Ranchero, from his friends and this time they got a few boxes stashed at Jordan’s place. As Jordan is one of Scotty’s best friends, he entrusted Jordan with some more valuable belongings. And the box that Scotty unpacks holds important documents, some small pieces of jewelry and some other personal items.
Kevin is surprised when he finds, in a plastic box, a telephone with an answering machine.
“Don’t laugh at it. I bought it for five dollars and works perfectly.” Scotty warns.
“Well, we can throw that one away.”
“No, no, no, we don’t.” Scotty says, nearly yanking it out of Kevin’s hands.
“We don’t?! Come on, Scotty. I have the latest telephone/answering machine there is, we really don’t need this old thing anymore, no matter how good it still works.”
“Are you crazy?! It’s mine and it helped me through quite some lonely loveless nights.” Scotty replies, almost devastated that Kevin is suggesting throwing it away. Kevin raises an eyebrow.
“An answering machine? Of all the appliances, working on batteries, that can bring joy on lonely nights… I have to admit, ‘answering-machine’ does not rank that high on my list.”
“No, I can imagine what would rank high on your list,… but those don’t really boost your self-confidence. This one does.” Scotty replies with a mysterious smile.
“You know, how somewhere someone says something to you that changes your whole life and the way you look at yourself?… Well, this is it for me.”
“Should I be jealous?” Kevin wonders, Scotty smiles.
“Depends…” he plugs it in and lets it play back an old message and to his surprise Kevin hears:
“Hi, Scotty, It’s.. ahm… it’s… it’s Kevin. Your… your least favorite Martian. Look,.. I… I… I’ve been on your planet for 34 years and I still get a lot of things wrong. Like about… money… and work …. and people….and life… and love and …Everything…. Anyway I just wanted you to know I think you’re amazing… and funny …and cute as hell, I just hope that someday, maybe I don’t know….. 3 Martian years from now, because our years are longer than yours, maybe I could be worthy of your human love and respect, whether we are together or not. That’s all.”
Kevin gives him a non-understanding look and Scotty explains:
“At the time I didn’t think that highly of myself. Always asking myself if I was good enough. And then I found myself in a relationship with a lawyer and I felt completely out of my league. When we broke up, I felt worthless…..”
“I’m sorry….” Kevin starts, but Scotty prevents him from going on.
“No. Please, listen, it wasn’t about you. I was constantly aware of how I was not good enough and never considered that maybe….”
“…I liked you just the way you were…?” Kevin finishes. They look at each other.
“I was so in awe about you, about being with you… But hearing you say that you thought I was ‘amazing’ just surprised me. I never thought of myself as being ‘funny’ or ‘cute as hell’…”
“I still stand by my words of way back then, Scotty.”
“It was hard to work two jobs and study at the same time. I made some long, long days and sometimes at night I would no longer be able to focus and I’d listen to your words. You gave me strength….” Scotty confesses and Kevin feels strangely choked up, for Scotty is so sincere in the way he talks. “Your opinion of me mattered to me.” Kevin kneels down in front of Scotty and kisses his lips…
“I am not taking a single word of it back.” he says tenderly.
Kevin browses through the documents before him, with the experience of a lawyer, used to paperwork. He already cancelled two of Scotty’s insurances and got him different ones, who are less expensive and just as good. It’s not much, but still it makes a difference. Of course it helps that Kevin is a lawyer, doesn’t take "no" for an answer and goes into to a conversation well prepared. A year ago Scotty would have felt like he should be equally good at this. Now, he knows better.
He smiles as Kevin hangs up with a satisfied face.
“Taken care of.” He says. He files Scotty’s insurance documents. They went through all the paperwork together and Scotty is amazed at how efficient and practical Kevin can be at this. Since Kevin takes them living together very serious, he has given Scotty access to his own documents. Filing Scotty’s certificates, insurances, etc with his own.
But now Scotty knows where to find everything. Every agreement and policy. Kevin has even shown Scotty how much is on his bank-account, including his savings and that had caused Scotty to swallow hard, because Kevin owned more than he thought. But after that, he had allowed Kevin to pay off two of his outstanding loans so he no longer owed the high interest on them. It had been hard to accept that financial help, but once accepted he was glad he had. His financial situation is getting better. His life is becoming more organized. He is in love again with the man he wanted for year and a half and this time it looks like it was actually working.
He smiles as he picks up the box and puts it on the table. He shoves it aside and at the same time there’s the loud cracking noise of something falling hard and breaking. Shocked Kevin turns around.
“What was that?” He asks.
“No idea.” Scotty says and he looks over the side of the table to exclaim: “Oh, no!”
“What?!” Kevin gets up and walks over to the table, just as Scotty picks up the pieces of his old phone.
“Oh, I’m sorry, sweetheart. What happened?”
“It was on the table. It fell…” Scotty looks as if he’s about to cry but then Kevin sees him put on a brave face and hears him say. “Guess I no longer need it anyway, huh?”
“No, I guess not.” Kevin says carefully. Scotty hands it over to Kevin.
“Could you.... throw it away for me for me, please?”
“Sure, hon.” Kevin says with the right amount of compassion.
Scotty steps out of the shower. Nothing like a hot shower to make you feel better when you’re feeling down, Scotty figures. For one moment the loss of the precious little tape comes back to him, but then he puts it aside. It’s gone, it’s gone.
He sighs and dries himself off, wraps that towel around his waist and goes to the living room, where Kevin is on the couch, reading a book.
“Hey. You smell good.” Kevin compliments him and Scotty grins.
Walking by Kevin’s desk Scotty sees his phone on the desk. There’s a message on it. He looks up. Why hadn’t Kevin replied to it? But Kevin is lost in his book and Scotty doesn’t want to disturb him. He presses ‘play’ and hears:
“Hi Scotty, It’s Kevin…. I just wanted you to know that whether Martian or Earthling, we are a part of each other and I can no longer imagine my universe without you. No matter what planet we’re on, I want to be there with you. Because I still think you’re amazing… and cute as hell. You make my life worth living again and ...I love you.... so very, very much.... Bye.”
Scotty’s eyes search for Kevin, who is still pretending to be reading, but then Kevin looks at Scotty. Their eyes meet and Kevin gives Scotty a little insecure smile, not sure if he did the right thing and Scotty just melts. Without another word, he walks over to Kevin and starts to kiss him. Kevin’s arms circle around Scotty and it doesn’t take long for the towel to end up on the floor and for Scotty to end up underneath Kevin.