"Hey man, I'm gonna have to ask you to leave," I tell one of the customers at the bar, not more than ten minutes after I get back from the diner. I'm still feeling kinda wound up and I never actually beat the crap out of that guy like I wanted to, so I'm pretty much ready to drag the guy out by his collar if I have to.
And then he turns to face me, a little white powder dusting his nose already.
"Damien!" He squeals, a huge grin spreading across his face.
"Rayn?" I ask incredulously. Rayn was the guitarist of the band me and Phil were in. And Cancer's bestie. I never knew why he was such good friends with Cancer. I mean, Rayn's like a child. An excitable child that's on a permanent sugar rush. Or in his case, a coke high. But Cancer was just an asshole. A drop dead gorgeous asshole, but an asshole nonetheless.
He shoves his wrap in his friend's hand and jump hugs me, making me stumble. I laugh slightly, hugging back for a moment.
"It's been too long, man. C'mon, do a line or two with us?"
I shake my head, letting go of him. "Aside from the fact I work here and I'm on shift right now, I've given up all that crap. Or, I'm trying." I shrug. What's the difference, anyways?
"That sucks vagina. Not even one, itty bitty little line?" I bite my lip, feeling the nagging cravings clawing at me. I groan.
"Maybe later. Just one." I have no spine.
"Yay!" he grins, patting me on the back.
"But seriously, no more drugs on premises, ‘kay? I don't wanna get fired for turning a blind eye on my first day." He pouts, and I prod the corners of his mouth upwards.
"...Where's off premises?"
Rayn tells me he's gonna be in town for a while, and gives me his new phone number before fucking off with his friends to go get high. I feel a little pang of envy as I watch him leave, kind of wishing I was going with him. I give myself a mental slap, remembering what's happened the last couple of times I've given in to the cravings.
I can't lose Kyle.
I finish up my shift and avoid them on the way home, not even giving into that one line. Fuck - walking away from that offer is way harder than it should be.
When I get to the apartment home, I find Kyle half asleep on the couch.
"You'll fuck up your back if you go to sleep there," I mutter, kicking my shoes off.
"Meh." Rolling my eyes, I pick him up bridal style, and carry him into the bedroom. He nuzzles my chest as I set him down on the bed. Kissing the top of his head, I lie down with him, cuddling him to me. He presses his nose to my chest. The poor guy's exhausted. "Love you," he says, falling asleep even as he speaks.
"I love you too," I hum, pulling the covers over us. I can't be bothered to get changed. I have plenty of shirts, and let's face it - pants never seem to need washing until you spill something on them. He's asleep within seconds and I kiss the top of his head again, closing my own eyes.
In the morning, Kyle nudges me. What? I didn't get to sleep til some stupid hour. Lemme alone. I grunt and roll over.
"Damien, why's there blood everywhere?"
"Wha?" I ask sleepily, not really understanding why he's waking me up. So I might've picked a couple scabs while he was asleep. I didn't bleed that much.
"There's blood everywhere," he says. I groan, shifting onto my back, cracking open one eye. "Why's there...?" he questions, staring. "Why's there blood on your shirt?" he stares at it, and I look down, my own eyes widening as I hold back a panicked yelp as I see the dark patches on it. Maybe I had bled more than I thought. I get up sharpish and scoot into the bathroom, locking the door behind me.
I start peeling my shirt off, letting out a quiet hiss as it takes the fresh scabs with it.
"Damien?" he knocks on the door. "Damien, are you okay?"
"Umm... Can you get me a clean shirt?" I mumble, trying to clean myself up with tissue paper and water. I open the door a tiny bit, sticking my hand out for the clean shirt as he comes back with it. I grab it from him, shutting the door and locking it again.
"Babe, what's wrong?"
"Nothing. I just... scratched too hard." Because he's totally gonna believe that.
"There's something you're not telling me." There we go. I slip the clean shirt on and open the door again.
"I'm fine, it was just the scratching," I insist. "Campbell noticed it in my last session. Apparently being itchy is one of the few million withdrawals from methadone." I don't even need to look at him to be able to tell he doesn't quite believe me. I just focus on stripping off the bed sheets. He watches me, and I can almost feel him not believing me. I carry on with what I'm doing, shoving the sheets into a bag to take down the Laundromat later.
"I better get going," he says eventually.
"'Kay," I nod. "Don't exhaust yourself so bad today."
"I'll do my best," he grins and I smile, kissing him. He kisses back, before disappearing off to school.
That was too fucking close.