About: The whole gang
Disclaimer: Absolutely NO idea where this inspiration came from, because I haven't seen/read any of the 10 million variations on the topic. Written with love, and for fun, not for money.
Summary: Kevin Walker is a man without much feelings… Oh, and there are some ghosts, something or other about Christmas and then there's his handsome assistant Scotty Wandell…. Other than that, not many surprises and you can probably guess the ending too. But ... whatever... It's Christmas, right? ;)
Oh, yeah, it's an AU so characters can be different than you'd expect. And it's completely bogus, not meant to be consistent and so allow for some 'artistic freedom'. I've written this in 4 days, so I might have the lost the plot here and there. :D
Alone and back in his room, Kevin stares at his hands and he feels helpless. He's still not entirely convinced that things are so bad, but it had thrown him to see Danny's sadness. There had been a time when he had truly been in love with Danny, what had happened to those feelings? When had he started to become so uncaring?
Of course, he can see the slow shift since working for Browne Carter. Any feeling of compassion got squashed. Any sign of emotion was considered 'a weakness' and you didn't want to be considered a weakling. And after Danny, there had never been anybody who managed to warm up his heart, or his bed, or his body....
Though ... if he was being honest to himself... There is one who.... He can't finish his thought because the room lights up as if an atomic bomb just went off and Kevin has to look away and close his eyes to not get blinded. When he can finally see some contours again, he recognizes the person in question.
"Well, there you are. I'm the ghost of Christmas present."
"You of all people? Do you have any idea how much you hurt mom? She has felt guilty for so many years that you didn't trust her enough to come out to her."
"Well, maybe I'm the one who can kick some sense into you." His uncle replies. Kevin doesn't seem to trust it very much, so Saul continues. "It had nothing to do with your mother, tell her that. It was the start of the AIDS-epidemic. We had so little information. When my lover was diagnosed, we both knew we would end up dead...."
He practically waves his explanation away as if it was insignificant.
"I lost the man I loved and I couldn't deal with that... It was my decision. Just like I wrote in the letter. I didn't want to move on without the love of my life. It was never about her, but of course she had to make it all about her and her self-pity."
Kevin wants to protest and defend his mother, but he already feels this sensation of traveling through time and space, like he had with Holly.
"I'm supposed to show you how everyone is celebrating Christmas without you. But it probably won't help much. You're a drama-queen like your mother, you probably won't get it."
"No hard feelings, hey?" Kevin can't help but ask cynically.
"I'm sorry, but I've been bound to this stage in death, because she keeps holding on to me. She keeps pulling me back with her woe-is-me attitude. She's the one that keeps me stuck on this plane of existence. For 20 years now. I'm tired of this."
"Well, it's not my fault...." But Kevin can't finish his sentence as he gets thrown straight into the living room of his parents. He immediately recognizes the place, even though he hasn't been there for years. "... Nothing has changed around here." Kevin notices.
"No, wallowing in the past, rather than looking at the future is so Nora's thing."
"Seriously, Uncle Saul, I know you don't believe me, but she still loves you very much and she misses you."
"Wrong. She misses the image she has of me. She never had a clue who I was."
"And whose fault was that?" Kevin finally bites back. Saul becomes quiet.
The silence is uncomfortable, because, in a way, Kevin can recognize himself in Saul's words. He had always been considered 'fragile', he needed 'protection' and it is true that his mother would believe him over Tommy, Kitty, Sarah and Justin anytime. He could get away with murder if needed... She never knew Kevin, only the image she had created of him.
"Mom, I'm sure that Kevin would come if he could." Sarah tries to comfort her mother.
"No, he wouldn't. He's an asshole."
"Tommy! Don't talk about your dear brother like that!"
"Mom, Tommy is just being realistic. Kevin doesn't care what you think or want."
"Justin!" Kitty kicks him in the shins and nods to her mother, who now seems to drown even more in her tears. Justin rolls his eyes.
"Mom, I hate to have to be the realistic and practical one..." Justin starts. "... but you have to face the facts.
Kevin hasn't been to our Christmas-celebration in 15 years. He will not come this year either. He doesn't care about you. Or his brothers or sisters. Or his nephew and niece. Will you please stop crying over spilled milk? Can't we just move on and simply accept that the arrogant piece of shit will not come here anymore and just celebrate without him?
Why can't we take his example and simply forget about his existence, like he has forgotten about ours? ... You have 4 other children and 3 grand-children. Enjoy what you have rather than cry over the one who's vain to show up!"
"Bright boy! He'll go far." Saul compliments Justin on his speech.
It's terribly silent at the table and Kevin can see that Justin wonders if he hadn't gone too far. His mother nods as if she comes to a decision and she wipes her eyes.
"Maybe you're right, maybe we should..." She says in a little voice , much to the surprise of the others. "... And maybe we should start by throwing out his gifts that are still under the tree."
She sits straight up looking at her children, whose chins have dropped in shock. Though she's clearly upset, she also seems determined. Saul whistles in appreciation.
"When did she suddenly grow a spine?" He wonders.
"I'm done. I can't take this anymore. He's been ruining my Christmases for 15 years now." Nora says.
Kevin feels as if someone punched him in the gut. Nora gets up.
"Let's open up the gifts and see if there are things we can still use and, otherwise, out with the trash." Julia, Tommy's wife, jumps up and gets a garbage-bag from the kitchen.
The others start ripping open the presents that are still under the Christmas-tree. Kevin looks away. The only one not participating in the 'carnage' is Tommy. Nora walks up to him.
"How are you, sweetheart?"
"Mom, would it be possible for Julia and me to move back here with you. We've run up so much debts that we can't pay for our house anymore. We'll be evicted. If not this month then the next. Just want to move as fast as we can."
"Oh, honey, you know you can stay here. But... Kevin owns your house, can't you...?"
Before Nora can finish her sentence, Tommy shakes his head.
"No. I never, ever, ever want to talk to him again. I hope I never see him anymore either. I'm so done with him, he has done so much damage to this family..."
"Not just him... I was blinded by my love for him as well."
"I don't blame you, mom. You were just trying to be a good mother and protect one of your children which you believed to be the weaker one. It's Kevin who is a liar and a fake." Kevin is shocked to hear how his mother and brothers talk about him. He turns away once more, but not before he has seen how Tommy wraps his arms around his mother and comforts her.
Kitty and Sarah stand to the side, talking more quietly and Kevin gets closer to hear what they say.
"I'm glad that mom has finally given up on this fake memory that she has of Kevin. As harsh as Justin was, he was right. Kevin never cared about any of us." Kitty whispers.
"And it's not just us. He doesn't care about anyone. He's cruel, vindictive, mean-spirited and greedy. I'm so glad that I decided to not talk about him again. As far as I'm concerned he's dead. And I only have two brothers, not three. I never even mention him to the kids anymore either. They only have two uncles."
Though Kevin has to admit that he hasn't been too interested in Sarah or her kids, somewhere it hurts that they talk about him like that.
"Come on. You've done enough damage here." Saul grabs him by the arm.
"They .. they aren't serious, right? I mean, I'm still their brother and..."
Kevin bows his head. He gets the nagging feeling that he hasn't exactly earned that title much lately.
"Let's go." Saul says. "We're not done. And time is limited."
"Where are we going?"
Kevin has the impression that he only blinked, but suddenly he's in a room he doesn't recognize. It's warm and pleasant, but everything looks second-hand, dated and faded.
"Where are we?" he asks Saul, but at the same time, the door swings open and he recognizes Jason McCallister, the minister from that afternoon.
He's followed by another man, who, as soon as Jason's stops, stops behind Jason and hugs him from behind.
"We'll find a way, love." The man kisses Jason's neck. Jason shakes his head.
"I don't know how."
It's only now that Kevin can see tears in the eyes of the otherwise always cheerful minister.
"The man standing behind Jason is Chad Barry, Jason's husband. He's an actor, but he hasn't been getting too many jobs lately."
"That's not my fault." Kevin shrugs.
"No, but adding to their misery by being so merciless is your fault." Saul points out.
"They're always late, they have been from the start, it's always something, there's always some excuse... And I'm done with it." Kevin answers. Saul frowns.
"And what about the children?" Jason suddenly wonders. "What can we do?"
He turns to Chad.
"I could take that part that has been offered to me..." Chad suggests.
"Chad, no. I love you and I know you want to help, but that script is a porn-movie veiled by some flimsy story to make it look like something halfway decent."
"It will bring in money...."
"It's porn... and it will permanently destroy your career... what's left of it anyway."
"But, the kids..."
"No. I cannot accept that. I could never forgive myself."
"It will be my choice, sweetheart. I can't stand the thought that we and our children will lose the only place we have. It will break your heart and you know it." Chad gently takes Jason by the chin and forces Jason to look at him. "I love you." He kisses Jason's lips. "And accepting that job is the only way, that I can think of, that we can keep this place."
Saul grabs Kevin's arm and yanks him away from the beautiful, lovely couple.
"You know, that movie will be a became the porn-movie which will destroy Chad's life permanently." Saul says quietly as they move up the stairs of the run-down place.
"Not my problem." Kevin shakes his head. "Like he said. He makes his own choices."
Saul looks at Kevin with a dubious look on his face, then he shrugs.
"Whatever." He then says. Kevin feels as if he missed something important, but he has no idea what it could be. "The children. You should at least see what you're throwing out." Saul and Kevin enter a dormitory where 10 children sleep.
It's cold in the room and the children all sleep under thin blankets. The place is clean, but shows clearly that there is quite some overdue maintenance. There are cracks in the walls. The curtains are old and the paint is faded, so everything looks bland and not very welcoming.
Kevin looks at the children. Tiny white faces in the light of a nightlights. Saul smiles gently down on them.
"Aren't they beautiful?" He says lovingly. Kevin looks at him and then at the children. Yes, they are beautiful. "I just would like you to see what you're throwing away."
"I'm not thr...." Kevin can't finish his sentence, because the door opens and Chad comes in to check on the children. He covers up some of the children who have fought off their blankets and one little girl wakes up. Chad smiles at her, gives her small kiss on the kiss on the forehead, covers her up and gently tells her to go back to sleep.
"Is Jason alright? He seemed a little sad tonight." She asks. "The other kids say that some mean man wants to close this place and throw us out." Her eyes are big and they show her worries. Chad smiles, but he isn't fooling anyone. Both Kevin and the little girl recognize that the smile is fake.
"Don't worry, sweetie, I'm going to find a solution... We're not going anywhere." He promises and he caresses her hair. When Chad turns away however, Kevin can see that he has tears in his eyes.
"I think that Chad just made a very bad decision for himself." Saul sighs.
Kevin is still trying to figure out what is going on and what emotions exactly he's feeling when, with the blink of an eye, he's yet in another room he doesn't recognize.
"Where are we this time?" He asks.
"Jordan. He's the best friend of Scotty Wandell. Nice guy."
"Which one? Scotty or .. Jordan?" Kevin asks.
"Both. Look there's Scotty. Quite attractive too."
Kevin turns to see Scotty exit the kitchen holding a plate covered with a towel. Scotty looks amazing in black jeans and a blue sweater that matches his eyes.
"How late will the others get here?" Scotty asks, putting the plate on the table. It smells delicious and again Kevin's stomach growls.
For some reason Scotty looks straight at Kevin as if he can see Kevin standing there. Kevin can't see the confused look on Saul's face. That is not supposed to happen. The people they visit usually don't know that they're there. Why does Scotty know where Kevin is?
Scotty quickly shakes his head as if he has no idea what has come over him and focuses his attention on Jordan for the answer.
"Between now and half an hour." Jordan replies. "Feeling somewhat better?"
"What is wrong with him?" Kevin asks Saul, suddenly worried that his faithful employee might have some sickness he doesn't know about. Saul simply nods at the two men, signaling Kevin to listen to the two men.
"You looked worn out when you came in."
"I feel that way too. Thanks for letting me use your shower. The apartment next to mine is still empty, and my other neighbor is on some tropical island, so with no one heating there, my walls are like a gigantic ice-cubes. I came home and the place was cold and empty and I felt so sad and miserable. I just needed some warmth."
"Glad you could find that in my apartment and under my shower, but I have to say this: I don't understand why you continue to work for that asshole." Jordan continues. "Scotty, you're better than this. You deserve better than that dried up raisin. The man is so evil that he absorbs all your kindness and leaves you empty and sad."
"How poetic." Scotty tries to laugh off Jordan's words.
"Not poetic. Truth. Lately, whenever you come here, you're exhausted and sad. You see and hear so much misery. You're too compassionate. You care. It's destroying you. It's making you sick."
"What else can I do?" Scotty asks.
"Leave! Get out! Quit! Tell the asshole to go to hell and walk out!" Jordan practically shouts.
"I can't. I love him." Scotty answers and Kevin feels a shock go through him.
"You're a fool." Jordan raises his hands to finish the conversation, but Scotty takes his hands.
"Please, don't be mad at me." Scotty begs. "I couldn't bare it if I lost you or your friendship. I know I'm acting like a love-sick fool, but..."
Jordan leans in and gives Scotty a quick kiss on the cheek.
"You'll never lose me, you little idiot, but I'm going to keep talking into you to leave. That man is extinguishing the light in you... And I won't let it happen." Jordan says. Scotty doesn't want to talk about Kevin anymore.
"I made you these." Scotty deflects the attention by pulling away the towel from the plate . "Red velvet cupcakes. The best in the world..." He teases.
"I hate you..." Jordan replies with love and sweetness in his voice. "Can't you just fall in love with me?"
"Sorry." Scotty apologizes. "Look, I heard you. I am taking your words and suggestions into consideration. I know I'm not happy, but ... I don't want to quit on him either. If I leave there will be no one left who'll care for him."
"So what." Jordan shrugs, but before Scotty can answer, the doorbell rings. Their first guests arrive.
Kevin's chin is almost on the floor. Scotty loves him? He feels confused. He turns to Saul to ask for further explanation, but at that moment, he blinks and suddenly he's back in his cold and dark bedroom-annex-library-annex-living-room.
End of Part 3/5