“So where are we all staying?” Spence asks as he finally comes out of his interview.
“I’ll go to Birch’s place.” Blue says.
“George will come to my room.” Dylan says yawning. None of them will make it to class today.
“The rest of us should get hotel rooms.” Andy says.
“Not alone.” Antonio says.
“Of course not. Lets see if we can get the connecting rooms to my suite, or to another.” Gervais says.
“Call now.” Spence says.
“You not staying with Magnus?” Blue asks Spence.
“Feels like too much too soon.” Spence says.
“Call me when you wake up.” Blue says.
“I just want to shower off all this blood.” Spence says.
“Me too. I can’t believe what happened.” Blue says.
“I know. It is just unbelievable. He’s gone.” Spence says.
“We did what we could.” Blue says.
“I hope so. I love you, we’ll get through this.” Spence says.
“Love you too.” Blue says.
“Baby you look awful.” Birch says opening the door. The clean t-shirt that Robin gave to Blue also ended soaked with blood. Blue’s hair is caked and he looks like he stepped off a slasher movie set.
“I have stitches. Can you help me wash up? I just need to be clean.” Blue says trying to hold back the tears. He’s exhausted and just needs to sleep.
“Of course I will. I have class in an hour. Will you be okay alone?” Birch asks.
“I’ll be asleep.” Blue smiles weakly.
Birch undresses Blue who is too tired to do much himself. He puts all the clothes straight into a garbage bag and winces at the sight of the state of his boyfriend’s arms and back.
“He got me good.” Blue says.
Birch gently washes Blue. It takes a couple of shampoos to get the mated blood from his hair. He wraps him in a towel and gently dries him before leading him to the bed. They kiss gently for a few minutes.
At the hotel Jesse’s mom has already left. They are able to get rooms together and are soon organizing themselves into pairs and threes.
“I’ll go with you babe, you need some help in the shower.” Andy says to Spence.
“Yeah.” Spence says wanting to be with Andy more than anything.
Antonio and Robin grab a room and DeShawn and Elliot go in with Gervais into his suite.
Spence gets new clothes from the hotel gift shop. Totally not his style but Robin and Gervais things are too small and he can’t manage anything else.
Andy runs the water until its as hot as can be as he peels off Spence’s clothes. Spence lets him, he needs the comfort of the familiar. He needs his Andy to make it better.
Andy washes Spence and Spence leans on Andy as he does it. Their lips meet soon and it is passionate. They want to feel good. They need to comfort each other. They need sex. Ache for it.
They lean against the wall kissing hard, Andy slams Spence around so he’s facing the wall and is kissing and biting at Spence’s neck as he fingers his hole. Spence is gasping with excitement and need. He yells loudly as Andy pushes inside. No one makes him feel like Andy and that is all he needs right now.
They enjoy a hard fuck while the water scalds their skin. Its rough and hard and Spence is crying from pleasure and pain as Andy slams into him. He shoots hard and groans as Andy finishes inside him, feeling whole again. Pink from sex and hot water they tumble back out into the bedroom. Ready to finally sleep.
“Thank you.” Spence says as he dries off.
“I won’t tell.” Andy says.
“You’re amazing.” Spence says.
“So are you. Man you wrestled a knife wielding maniac last night. I love you Spence. We’re so good together.” Andy says.
“We’re a great team.” Spence says running his fingers over Andy’s cheek in wonder at the beauty of his ex. Andy knows him so well, knows what he needs, they just lost their way.
All the guys are about to sleep when they get a series of calls telling them to come in for a meeting with the administration. They all beg for it to be tomorrow as they need sleep but there is no changing it.
Birch puts Blue in a cab worried that he shouldn’t be driving tired and messed up as he is. He wants to go with him but he has to go to class and knows Blue will be with his friends.
“You okay?” Birch asks Grant as they get to class.
“Yeah, you look rough, late night?” Grant asks.
“Did Magnus not tell you what happened at the guy’s suite last night?” Birch asks.
“No I didn’t see him yet.” Grant says worried.
Birch outlines the events and the state that Blue was in when he turned up. Both boys sit there tears falling. Neither were close with Jesse but that he’s gone suddenly hits Birch who had been focused entirely on Blue. Grant is shocked that the creeper from his party was the murderer.
They try and pull themselves together to focus but the news of the death of a student across town is swirling around the class.
After hearing a crass joke Birch can’t take it and walks out.
“What’s the problem?” The teacher asks Grant.
“The student murdered last night was a friend of ours. It happened in Birch’s boyfriend’s dorm. It’s hard to focus with these jackasses gossiping about it.” Grant says.
“Go, take the time you need.” The teacher says knowing neither student is the type to jump on someone else’s trade by for attention.
“Thanks. We’ll make it up.” Grant says and leaves to find Birch.
“Sorry for dragging you out.” Birch says.
“I couldn’t deal ether. Let’s go and be with the guys.” Grant says.
“Yeah they must still be in the meeting, Blue hasn’t called yet.” Birch says.
At the meeting it isn’t just the guys but all of Justin’s suite and the rest of Elliot’s. They are told about grief and trauma counselling and that the police will be keeping them out of the suite for another day. The suite guys also have a package of clothes and toiletries each too.
“We need our things but I don’t see us moving back in.” Blue says.
“Right. The door was locked and he got in. None of us feels safe.” DeShawn says knowing his influence will get things done.
“Security will be reviewed. If you make your own living arrangements we’ll see what we can do to help.” The dean says.
“Is there anything else? We’ve been in hospital and with the police all night. We really need some sleep.” Spence says.
“Jesse’s family have asked that you do not contact them and that none of you attend the funeral. We understand this is distressing but ask that you all abide by their wishes. Of course we will have a memorial service here for him.” The dean says.
“His parents wanted nothing to do with him. He shouldn’t be going to them.” Elliot says.
“They are his next of kin. I fully understand your frustration Elliot and I wish his parents accepted him for who he was and saw the great community that you guys have created here. That it is your group in front of me again is incredibly troubling and we want you to know we are doing all we can to keep our students safe.” The dean says.
“So is it true what they are saying on the news? That he was locked up in a psych ward for the last year? That he stalked guys before?” Corey one of Elliot’s suite mates asks as the others gasp.
“Normally we would not disclose any medical information about a student but it has been leaked and is now in the public domain. Justin was not on a semester abroad but was in a treatment facility, he had been assessed as being well and he had regular evaluations whilst he was here. There was never a suggestion he was dangerous or could become dangerous. We would ask that you all refrain from talking to the media.” A lawyer for the university says making it apparent why he needs to be here.
Elliot crumbles. Everything has been too much and he just can’t deal with more. All the guys are too devastated by all that has gone before to take it in. Gervais tries to comfort Elliot the best he can. That Jesse’s death was preventable is too much t take in.
“So when I made a complaint about him earlier in the semester why wasn’t he removed?” Bailey who lives in Tyler’s suite asks.
“And we weren’t warned after I made a complaint a few days ago.” Spence says.
The lawyer clearly unaware looks visibly flustered.
“You reported him too?” Blue asks Bailey.
“Yeah, he started following me as well as Gervais. I’d barely even spoken to him so I was told to use the RA system but no one covers our floor. I just kept out his way.” Bailey says.
“So was he in with us to keep precious athlete DeShawn safer?” Tyler asks.
“That would make sense, it was always weird I wasn’t in with you guys.” Antonio says.
“We have no information on room assignments.” The lawyer says.
“I trust that scholarship students won’t be affected by any dip in grades over the next few weeks.” Blue says suddenly.
“Of course.” The dean says and Dylan looks at Blue curiously, hating to be that guy but wondering if he can get something from the situation.
Tyler’s suitemates and Elliot’s all have some further questions and the guys try to pay attention but struggle. Blue calls Birch when they leave and he and Grant find them quickly.
“Magnus and I have a lot of space if you guys want to stay with us for a while.” Grant says. Spence and Andy share a look.
“We’re in a hotel for a couple of days but yeah that might be good.” Andy says.
“Right now we just need some sleep. Lets all meet for dinner at Cheryls later. We need to eat and talk.” Blue says.
“Are we agreed no talking outside the group? No one is selling Jesse out?” Andy asks.
“None of us are talking to the media.” Spence says.
“If anyone is made an offer they can’t afford to refuse talk to me I will match it.” Gervais says.
“I would never and Elliot won’t.” George says.
“Of course not. Hey and thanks for getting me a pass on my grades. I might have to withdraw though. I don’t know I can cope.” Elliot says he’s feeling so broken.
“We are all here for you. All of us. Study will take our minds off it. But lets just get through the day.” Blue says.
“Thanks Blue. I wish we’d never broken up but then Gervais would be dead and you’d be the way I am. I let him go. I let him go.” Elliot says breaking down.
“Come on lets get you to student health and see if we can you something.” Grant says taking control.
“Thanks. Fuck I don’t know what to do.” Elliot says scared of how he’s feeling.
“You guys get going you all need sleep. Lets meet at 6. I’ll call Cheryl.” Birch says.
“Thanks Birch.” Spence says and they all filter away.
“Can you manage to stay awake a little while longer?” Birch asks Blue.
“Yeah its fine.” Blue says.
“I don’t know how I’d cope if that happened to you.” Birch says as they wait on Grant and Elliot.
“My momma would never exclude you from my funeral.” Blue says.
“Mine either. Fuck man I cannot get my head round Jesse being gone.” Birch says.
“They knew Justin was a little psycho.” Blue says.
“They what?” Birch asks.
“They knew. They fucking knew and they put him in our way. It could have been any of us. He could have killed Elliot or Gervais or Tyler. Fuck. They knew.” Blue says.
“Oh baby this place is a disaster. At least you’re transferring. I hate this place for all it has done to you.” Birch says.
“I need a fresh start. So many shit memories here. I hated Jesse at times, I especially hated him recently. I was so mean to him and I can never apologize.” Blue says.
“He wasn’t a saint and he hurt you. Don’t rewrite history. Remember the good baby.” Birch says.
“Yeah. It’s so hard.” Blue says and cries on Birch’s chest.
“Can I come in with you?” Grant asks after they drop Elliot back to the hotel.
“Yeah. Blue just needs sleep.” Birch says looking at his sleeping boy in the backseat.
“Thanks. I don’t want to be alone. I messaged Magnus but no reply yet.” Grant says.
They Blue into bed, poor thing can barely stand and Grant starts looking at Birch’s work.
“I love what you’ve started here, from the boat.” Grant says.
“Thanks. I’m surprised you’ve not done loads of work influenced by the ocean already.” Birch says.
“Trying to deny who I am. Not wanting people to know I’m from the sort of family that vacations there.” Grant shrugs.
“I had no idea. That you and Magnus are brothers with the same upbringing is funny.” Birch says.
“He is of the family mood for sure.” Grant smiles.
The two chat quietly all afternoon while Blue sleeps heavily. Birch tries to gently wake him so they can go to dinner and he just pulls Birch onto the bed to cuddle. Grant looks at them and smiles. He wishes he had what they have and dives on the bed to join the snuggles which sets Blue off laughing.
Cheryl has feast ready for the boys who have all woken starving. Willow and Magnus join them. Ocean climbs on to Blue as usual, he is far too big but Blue is happy to have his young friend around. Gervais moves to sit next to them and Ocean spends dinner distracting them from their grief and pain.
“Can I stay with you for a bit?” Gervais asks Cheryl as he helps her serve more food.
“Yes and bring a friend or two. Ocean can sleep in my bed for a bit, he has a sleepover bed so two or 3 of you can fit. Hotels can be a bit impersonal and I’d feel better having you close.” Cheryl says.
“Thanks. The hotel is such a reminder of Justin I feel sick being there.” Gervais says.
“I’m so worried about all of you.” Cheryl says.
“I don’t think it can get any worse.” Gervais says.
“Take care of yourself and be kind to each other. You will need each other.” Cheryl says.
“We’re all wide awake to that.” Gervais says and sits back down next to Blue and Ocean.
“You okay?” Gervais asks Blue.
“I’m fine.” Blue replies and turns his attention to Birch.
“I have some news.” Elliot says quietly.
“Go on.” Spence says gently and they all shut up.
“My mom called me. She saw about Jesse on the news. She wants me to go home and I’ve agreed.” Elliot says.
“Will that be safe for you? Will they try and put you in one of those programs?” Andy asks.
“She has told my dad she’ll divorce him if he even thinks of bringing up changing me. She’s ready to accept me and I need my family right now. I’m going to withdraw and take some time to think about my next move.” Elliot says.
“That sounds like a good plan.” Cheryl says thrilled that Elliot’s mom has finally woken up.
“You’re going to need some dick before you go.” DeShawn whispers to Elliot making him grin.
“You offering?” Elliot whispers back.
“Lets make sure its just us in the room tonight.” DeShawn says.
“Are you staying with Birch tonight?” Gervais asks Blue.
“Look just because Jesse died doesn’t make us friends.” Blue says through gritted teeth.
“We need each other right now.” Gervais says.
“No, I need my friends.” Blue says.
“No fighting.” Ocean says grumpily and they both turn away from each other.
“Will you stay with me tonight?” Magnus asks Spence.
“Uh I don’t want to leave Andy alone tonight but it would be great if I could stay with you for a few days.” Spence says.
“Why didn’t you call me last night? I found out from Grant.” Magnus says.
“Honestly it felt too big too soon. I didn’t want you getting mixed up in my shit.” Spence says.
“I thought we were together. I should be there for you.” Magnus says.
“I’m sorry. I wanted us to be something but I fucked up already.” Spence says.
“With Andy?” Magnus asks devastated.
“Yeah. We have so much history and that is what I needed. I didn’t give you the option. I’m sorry.” Spence says.
“We have history too. You can count on me. I don’t want this to be over. We’ll talk tomorrow.” Magnus says.
That night DeShawn gets a room for him and Elliot and they fuck all night like crazy. Finding each other to be more than willing to try anything they have a great time and Elliot almost regrets his decision.
Andy and Spence sleep together knotted tightly and taking great comfort from having the other there. Spence wants Andy back for good, he cannot imagine anything will ever feel as good as sleeping in Andy’s arms.
“I love you baby.” Spence murmurs as he snuggles tighter.