Title: Use It Only For Me
Word count: ~4600
Disclaimer: According to string theory, this must have happened in some reality. Sadly, I don't think it was this one.
A/N: Huge thanks and eternal hearts-in-eyes to britchick5000 for beta.
Brendon wasn’t exactly known for thinking things through but even if he had been, he still wouldn’t have seen the problem with running out from between the buses, stopping himself with an arm around Spencer’s middle and panting out, “Shit, Spencer, kiss me.”
Ryan, who until ten seconds ago had been talking expansively at Spencer, froze. Spencer made a sound not normally found in nature.
“Say what?” Spencer asked, voice high with what Brendon assumed was annoyance; it was normally annoyance when you took Spencer by surprise.
But Brendon was looking over Spencer’s shoulder and there wasn’t time for explanations so he just grabbed Spencer’s face in both hands and smushed their mouths together.
There was another high-pitched sound but this time it came from Ryan. Spencer was too busy trying to talk against Brendon’s mouth in a way that was totally distracting and not at all conducive to kissing.
Come on, Brendon thought and stuck his tongue in Spencer’s mouth and Spencer went weirdly… loose against him. Spencer opened his mouth a little and met Brendon’s tongue with his own. Score!
Cautiously, Brendon peeked his eyes open. He saw Ryan, looking part-way between horrified and amused; people in various bands gawking at them; and nobody else, thank you God.
Brendon let Spencer go, stepping back with a smile and a bounce. “Thank you, Spencer Smith, you’ve served your purpose.”
Something that had been very slightly dazed on Spencer’s face went suddenly very, very dangerous. “My what?”
Shit. Brendon gulped.
“You were the best fake boyfriend ever,” Brendon assured him, overly enthusiastic in the hope that Spencer wouldn’t kill him.
Spencer’s face went all red and murderous. Ryan – yay for Ryan, he could be Brendon’s next fake boyfriend – put his hand on Spencer’s arm, raising his eyebrows slowly (and, Brendon guessed, meaningfully) until Spencer deflated.
“Why d’you need a fake boyfriend, Brendon?” Ryan asked. Brendon watched in fascination as Ryan’s knuckles went white with effort against Spencer’s arm; Brendon couldn’t help wondering in a morbidly fascinated sort of a way if Spencer was about to hulk out or something.
“There’s this girl,” Brendon told them, eyes darting left and right in case she suddenly appeared. Seriously, she was ninja-like in her stealthiness. “I think she’s doing Cobra merch or something but she’s scary as fuck and won’t leave me alone.”
Ryan rolled his eyes. Spencer’s jaw jumped. “And what, seeing you making out with Spence is supposed to deter her? Have you met our fans?”
Brendon frowned. That was a good point. “I don’t think she’s a fan.” He checked around again then whispered, “She just really seems to want to mate with me. I think maybe she’s a preying thingamy. Preying mantis.”
Ryan didn’t bother to hide his laugh and even Spencer managed to look a little less homicidal.
“It’s not funny,” Brendon told them. Brendon was in fear of his life here.
“Right,” Spencer not-agreed, shrugging. “Next time you want a boyfriend, pick someone else okay?”
“O-” Brendon started but Spencer was already walking off. Brendon turned to Ryan, eyebrows raised because Spencer never walked off; he had a higher Brendon-tolerance than Shane even.
Ryan held up his hands. “Don’t look at me. I have a girlfriend.”
Brendon just stuck his tongue out because that hadn’t been what he’d been going to ask.
It wasn’t that Brendon was stupid; he knew Spencer was mad at him about the whole “Desperate Times, Desperate Measures” kiss thing even if he wasn’t sure why. But, yeah, desperate times, such as when there was a party on the TAI bus and Brendon was stuck on his own bus because Preying Merch Girl was prowling around outside.
“She’s not prowling,” Spencer said tiredly, toeing on his shoes. Ryan and Jon had gone on ahead and Spencer was just about to leave him and Brendon was desperate.
“She’s totally prowling,” Brendon argued. He risked pressing his face up against the glass and her head whipped around, fixing him with narrow, evil, red eyes. Possibly the red was a trick of the light, but they were definitely evil.
Brendon jerked back, swearing and landed half on top of Spencer who’d apparently been…standing right behind him?
“Woah,” Spencer said, righting him. “You are a lot of crazy lately.”
“It’s her,” Brendon whispered. If she had eyes in the back of her head, she could totally hear him talk about her through the bus wall. “She’s trying to get me.”
Spencer rolled his eyes but there was totally a smile at the very corner of his mouth when you knew where to look for it.
“Please, Spencer,” Brendon begged, giving Spencer his very best puppy eyes.
Spencer sighed. It was the kind of sigh he gave Ryan right before he consented to having his face painted or to playing the tambourine or anything else that was deeply painful to his soul. Brendon did a small, tasteful victory dance.
“Okay,” Spencer sighed, “But I’m not kissing you again.”
That was a shame, Brendon thought, Spencer was a surprisingly good kisser, but it was a concession he could live with. “Okay, fine, that’s fine. Just please?”
Spencer huffed. “You’re pathetic.” But Brendon didn’t think he was being overly optimistic when he thought it was said with love. “Come on then.”
Brendon scrambled to get into his jacket and slip some (Jon’s) flipflops on. “Thank you,” he said, meeting Spencer at the door. “You’re the best.”
“Yeah,” Spencer said, long-sufferingly. “I know.”
Outside, Brendon was pretty sure he heard a squeak as Preying Merch Girl spun on her heel at first scent of him. He pressed closer to Spencer’s side and, impressively, Spencer pressed back.
“Hi, Brendon,” she said. Creepily.
“Hi, Carol.” Her name was Carol. It wasn’t as fitting as Preying Merch Girl.
“Are you going to the party?” she asked. Sinisterly.
“Yeah.” He made sure they kept walking and found Spencer’s wrist blindly and squeezed. Spencer huffed but quietly, so Brendon was the only one who heard. “With Spencer.”
He made to lift Spencer’s arm in a sort of See? Him. I’m with him gesture but, before he could, Spencer shook his wrist free of Brendon’s grip and laced their fingers together instead so that when Brendon lifted their hands it was a lot more convincing.
“Oh,” she said and it wasn’t really Oh, I’ll Give Up Immediately but Brendon thought it was a start. “Have fun then.”
“Yep,” Brendon said, squeezing Spencer’s hand. The TAI bus was only four feet away now; they were so, so close to escape. “We will. ‘Kay. Thanks. Bye.”
The door swung open as they reached it and Brendon tumbled up the steps, pulling Spencer along with him and into safety.
“Whoo,” he cheered, arms in the air, possibly a bit too soon because the door wasn’t quite shut behind them yet, but who cared. They’d run the gauntlet and survived. He flung his arms around Spencer’s neck and smacked a kiss against his cheek. “Thank you, Spencer, thank you, you’re totally my favourite.”
“Awesome,” Spencer said and shoved him off. “I’m going to get alcohol now.”
Brendon watched him go, frowning. Spencer drank, sure, but he didn’t normally sound quite so in need of it. He shrugged it off after a second because Sisky was suddenly there, flinging his arms around Brendon in a drunk, friendly cuddle.
Sisky was kind of incredibly awesome; he even made Brendon forget about potentially sad Spencers.
A while later (time was relative on the TAI bus), Brendon got accosted by an angry Ryan Ross. As Brendon was kind of incredibly wasted by that point, he didn’t think that was very fair.
“Leave Spencer alone,” Ryan told him, pinning Brendon against the fridge with a look. Also a hand in the middle of his chest.
Brendon looked around, tipping his head carefully to check. “Spencer’s not here.”
Ryan’s hand pressed more firmly into Brendon’s sternum. Brendon kind of needed that to breathe. “Leave him alone,” Ryan repeated. “Leave him out of this thing you’re having with the merch girl.”
Brendon was not having a thing with the merch girl. Brendon was kind of scared about what would happen to his head if he tried. He didn’t want it bitten off. He pushed sulkily at Ryan’s hand. “Fuck’s sake Ross,” he protested, “It’s not like I’m actually besmirching Spencer’s virtue or whatever. I’m just asking to maybe pretend for a while, just until the tour’s over or the preying mantis finds a new victim.”
“Yes,” Ryan snapped, “I get that you don’t actually want to fuck him.”
Brendon threw his hands up in the air. One of them smacked into Ryan’s shoulder but it was totally an accident so he hoped Ryan didn’t hold it against him forever. This was insane. “So what is your problem? Are you worried about Spencer’s reputation or something?”
Ryan just looked at him. “Christ,” he said after a lengthy, dramatic pause, “You’re an asshole.”
For the nine-hundredth-million time that week, Brendon was left watching a member of his band storm away from him. Brendon was getting really tired of being confused.
“In my defence,” Brendon told the table top. “I didn’t mean to pick Spencer. He was just there. And he was prettiest. It’s not my fault.”
“Yeah,” Gabe laughed. Gabe did not have a particularly soothing laugh. “Sure.”
He pushed another beer bottle over the table to Brendon and Brendon would have loved to ask what he meant but ooh, beer.
Brendon’s hangover was kind of a shitty one. He got a lot more acquainted with the bus bathroom than he’d been before.
By late morning, Ryan had taken pity on him and started bringing him juice and dry foods and things that wouldn’t make him puke. At lunchtime, Jon brought him soup.
“Where’s Spencer?” Brendon asked because Spencer was normally the one who fussed when someone else had made an idiot of themselves. He would never have called it fussing, but fussing it was all the same.
Jon just smirked. “In a way worse state than you, dude.”
Which, wow. Spencer never drank enough to get hungover.
Mid-afternoon, Brendon risked crawling out of his bunk, dragging his blankets with him, to go curl up on the sofa. He thought he should spread his dying out over as much as the bus as possible.
The sofa, however, was already occupied. By a very pale, unshaven Spencer Smith. It was like the Return of the Beard, which Brendon thought had left with Haley.
“Hey,” Brendon said, climbing up next to him and spreading his blanket out over both their legs. He sort of wanted to snuggle but Spencer looked really fragile. Plus Brendon wasn’t sure Spencer wasn’t still pissed at him.
Spencer smiled weakly. “Hi,” he said and opened up his arms and well, if Spencer was offering.
Brendon cuddled close, putting his head on Spencer’s shoulder and his arms around Spencer’s middle, ignoring the slightly stale smell on Spencer’s skin, hoping Spencer would do the same for him.
“Okay?” Spencer asked after a nice period of quiet.
“Mm.” Brendon nodded. For the first time in what felt like ever, his head had stopped aching. He nosed at Spencer’s jaw until Spencer laughed and lifted his head so Brendon could tuck his face away more securely. “Are you sad, Spencer?” he asked, because the very idea of that was horrible.
Spencer shook his head. His cheek dragged against Brendon’s hair which felt weird but kind of cool. “I’m okay,” he said softly. “Don’t worry about me.”
Brendon had been constantly worrying about Spencer since he'd broken up with Haley; they all had. But he wasn’t going to admit that aloud.
“I’m sorry if I made you mad,” Brendon said quietly.
Spencer squeezed him. “It’s okay. You didn’t really.” Warm air blew across the top of Brendon’s head and he thought maybe Spencer might have kissed his hair. Which was very nice. “Just don’t ask me to pretend again, okay?”
Brendon nodded. He’d agree to pretty much anything if it meant Spencer wasn’t mad at him.
He’d even face Preying Mantis Merch Girls unsupported.
Help, Brendon thought really loudly but didn’t dare say. Help.
Carol the Merch Girl had him pinned, literally, into a corner. Her mouth was on his neck, her hands were down his pants and he wasn’t totally sure she wasn’t about to bite some vital part of him off.
“Hey,” he said desperately. “Do you want to get a drink?” Brendon wasn’t drinking ever, ever again, but he didn’t see the problem with getting other people blazed to get away from them.
“Mm,” she said, licking his collarbones, all wet and sloppy. “No.” Her hand tightened around the very important part of himself that he normally kept tucked away safe in his pants.
“Food?” he asked, voice rising worringly in pitch. Once she’d ripped his dick off, he’d always sound like that, he realised glumly. It would totally fuck up their harmonies.
“No,” she said, a lot more forcefully than Brendon liked people to be when they were holding his junk. Her nails – Jesus Christ. Nails. – dug into his balls. What the fuck was that? Was that supposed to be hot? Brendon kind of wanted a knight in shining armour. Or his mom. Or.
“Hey,” said a voice behind him. And Brendon sagged because oh thank you, God, Brendon was totally sorry if he’d ever been a disappointment. “Can you get your hands off my boyfriend, please?” It was the kind of please that meant do it or die. Painfully.
Preying Mantis Girl (and Brendon was sure of it now; she had fucking talons) stepped back, glaring at him narrowly. “I’ll see you later, Brendon,” she said (menacingly) before slinking off.
Brendon stared after her, making sure she’d actually gone before sticking his hand into his pants and massaging his poor, tortured manhood.
When he looked up, Spencer was watching him with raised eyebrows and oh. Oops. Brendon pulled his hand away and buttoned his fly, feeling his cheeks get hot.
“Okay?” Spencer asked, expression arch and like he was fighting a smile. Asshole.
“No,” Brendon said, a little hysterically.
Spencer laughed but it was – Brendon told himself – mostly affectionate. “So maybe you were right,” Spencer told him, leaning against the wall beside him. “She is kind of scary.”
“Terrifying,” Brendon corrected firmly. And the thing was that yeah, this was mostly insane, kind of a joke, but she did actually scare him kind of a lot. Apparently that showed on his face because instead of laughing at him again or leaving him or anything, Spencer slung a casual arm around Brendon’s shoulders and rubbed his arm a bit until Brendon stopped feeling quite so freaked out.
“Spence?” Brendon asked then didn’t say anything else. He wasn’t sure what he’d been planning to say.
Spencer sighed. “Okay,” he said, sounding worn-down but still just a little bit warm. “I’ll be your fake boyfriend.”
Brendon managed not to pump the air. Just.
It turned out that Spencer was a really rocking fake boyfriend.
They usually hung out together a lot anyway so that didn’t have to change, but he started bringing Brendon drinks and standing more inside his personal space than usual and it was all kinds of awesome because usually Brendon got sick of being crowded by people he was dating but it turned out that when it was fake dating (and when it was Spencer), he didn’t mind at all.
And best of all, Preying Mantis Girl looked to have found herself a new victim. Poor Singer; he never stood a chance.
There were, however, some situations that Brendon could handle all by himself. For example times like right now, in a club outside Reno, where he was being hit on by a hot scene kid with a lip ring. (Lip ring, Brendon mouthed at Jon excitedly. Jon gave him a thumbs-up. Brendon was never sure when those were sarcastic.)
“Hey,” Spencer said, sliding up to him and knocking a bottle of beer against his arm. “Here.”
Brendon’s eyes skittered from Spencer and beer on one side and Hot Scene Guy and lip ring on the other. It wasn’t the sort of decision Brendon should ever be asked to make.
Hot Scene Guy whispered something low and dirty and really, really awesome into Brendon’s ear and yeah, okay, so maybe the decision wasn’t so hard after all.
“It’s okay, Spence,” Brendon said, waggling his eyebrows in what he hoped was a meaningful manner. “You can take the night off tonight; I think I can handle this one.”
Spencer’s eyes narrowed for a minute before his expression went weirdly neutral. “Right,” he said, shrugging. “Enjoy yourself.”
Brendon watched him walk away, feeling all over again like he’d done something wrong. Really, he was starting to get sick of feeling like that.
“Hey,” Hot Scene Guy said, “You want to get out of here?” And yeah, Brendon really did.
They got another thumbs-up from Jon on the way out and a couple necking in the corner turned out to be Ryan and Keltie necking in the corner – Ryan narrowed his eyes when he saw Brendon so Brendon hustled Hot Scene Guy past quick before Ryan could tell him not to pick up groupies or whatever Ryan was opening his mouth to say – but Brendon didn’t see Spencer anywhere.
“Lost something?” Hot Scene Guy asked, not waiting for an answer before crowding Brendon up against the wall down the side of the club and proceeding to try to help find Brendon’s tonsils. That was nice of him; Brendon thought, dazed.
It took a minute (or two) to realise that the vibrations against his hip weren’t a happy byproduct of getting felt up. He thought about ignoring it but Hot Scene Guy was stepping back, just enough for Brendon to get to his pocket.
Brendon flicked open his phone. “Hello?” he asked. Sometimes, on bad days, Ryan answered his phone with What? Brendon wished occasionally that he had the guts to do that.
“Brendon,” Ryan’s voice said, “I need to talk to you.”
Brendon rolled his eyes. “What, Ross? I’m kinda busy here.”
“Look, I’ve been trying to keep out of this-” Here, Brendon maybe said ha but he wasn’t going to admit that if Ryan hadn’t noticed – “But I can’t let you do this to Spencer.”
Hot Scene Guy’s tongue was in Brendon’s ear but it wasn’t that that made Brendon bang his head back against the wall. “Do what to Spencer? I’m not doing anything to him. Anyway, you're the one who told me to leave him alone.”
“I meant leave him out of your stupid feud with the scary merch girl not, not this.” Ryan’s voice broke and Brendon realised with a wave of hysteria that he wasn’t the only one trying to have this conversation while getting lucky. Ryan was confusing the hell out of him and it made him want to say something stupid like Bet I can come first.
Hot Scene Guy’s hands wandered to Brendon’s crotch and yeah, awesome place for hands to be. But he kind of needed his brain to work out what the hell Ryan was saying so he put his hands over Hot Scene Guy’s and mouthed hang on. “Not what?”
Ryan made a soft, muted kind of mm sound that Brendon really did not need to hear. “You can’t keep going hot and cold, Bren; it’s shitty.”
“Hot and-” Brendon started to ask only suddenly, like the big, dramatic reveal in a movie or something ,everything made perfect sense. “Oh holy shit. I’ve got to go,” he said to Ryan and Hot Scene Guy. He hung up his phone and ran.
Spencer wasn’t still inside the club. Brendon looked everywhere then rang Ryan again.
“Spencer went back to the hotel,” Keltie told him and Brendon didn’t ask why Ryan couldn’t talk because he didn’t want to know.
“Right,” Brendon said and hung up. He called her back to say thanks. She laughed at him but he didn’t care; he was a man on a mission.
It took him a half hour to get back to the hotel and he spent it carefully… not thinking at all. That had always proved to work best.
“Do you have a crush on me?” Brendon asked when Spencer opened his hotel door.
Spencer’s arm twitched like he was thinking about slamming the door shut but Brendon nudged his foot into the doorway just in case.
Looking tired, Spencer just sighed and waved him in. “Well done, Brendon,” he said, sitting down heavily on his bed and motioning around the room like Brendon could sit himself wherever he wanted. “It only took you a year longer than everyone else.”
Brendon gaped because a year? Holy fuck. He sat down on the floor in front of Spencer because there wasn’t anywhere else to sit that would let him look Spencer in the eye and he absolutely had to see him for this conversation.
“I had no idea,” he said weakly.
Spencer laughed shortly. “Yeah. Thanks. I got that.”
“No, I mean.” Brendon rolled up onto his knees and put his hands on Spencer’s thighs. “I had no idea.” Wow, he’d really been an asshole. “No wonder you were pissed at me.”
Spencer was tense under Brendon’s hands but he didn’t shove them off. Brendon wondered if maybe he should move them himself; he didn’t want to keep doing shitty, wrong-impression-giving things to Spencer.
“I was pissed at me,” Spencer admitted at last and Brendon left his hands where they were. “I knew it was only pretend, but I still let myself enjoy it. So I guess I got mad.”
Brendon really didn’t know what to say. He sort of wanted to fold Spencer up into the biggest hug ever but he wasn’t sure Spencer would appreciate that; Spencer liked hugs on his terms.
“Because yeah,” Spencer continued bitterly. “I’m the biggest fucking cliché in the world. Everyone’s in love with Brendon Urie, even me.”
Brendon’s tongue suddenly felt three sizes too big for his mouth. “In love?” he choked out, watching in fascination as Spencer went abruptly red then white.
“Oh God,” Spencer said, hiding his face in his hands and talking through his fingers. It was stupidly cute. “Please pretend I didn’t say that?”
“Um.” Brendon thought about it. “No.”
Spencer looked up, frowning and uncertain. “No?”
Brendon shook his head. “Really, really no.” He pushed himself upright with his hands on Spencer’s thighs and leaned in so he was sort of looming over Spencer. But not in a scary way.
Spencer tipped his head up and made a soft, questioning sound. It was pretty obvious, at least to Brendon, what was going to happen next, which was maybe why it was so easy to move that extra little inch forward and press his mouth to Spencer’s.
Spencer made a little sound, soft and questioning, and like he’d like to be arguing if only his mouth wasn’t busy doing other things.
It was only really meant to be a brush of lips, a mixture of wow and thanks and apology. He loved Spencer, sure, but the way Spencer was looking at him, the expression that was so blatantly in his eyes now that Brendon knew for look for it, wasn’t anything Brendon had ever felt for anyone.
Except it felt good, really good and Brendon liked things that felt good. Spencer kissed with all his body, shoulders down to his hips and even though they weren’t touching anywhere but Brendon’s hands on Spencer, Brendon felt engulfed.
Spencer’s hands landed on Brendon’s hips, and Brendon found himself pushing into the touch. This was insane, he was kissing Spencer, kissing pretty much his best friend in the world. And it was really good. Brendon got one hand in Spencer’s hair and the other on the soft skin at Spencer’s waist and he couldn’t help wondering what the hell had been wrong with him that they hadn’t been doing this every moment since they met.
“Wait,” Spencer said and he stopped which, wow, was so not on.
Brendon made a sad, inquiring sound and Spencer’s lips twitched.
“What are you doing?” Spencer asked, looking up at Brendon with serious eyes and kiss-swollen lips.
Brendon made his smile huge and obnoxious. “Kissing you.” And how.
“Yeah,” Spencer said, drawing back. “I’m sorry. No.”
Brendon reached out for him as he tried to pull away. Spencer was amazingly soft and his tongue tasted like candy and strawberries and Brendon really wasn’t prepared to give that up without a fight.
Spencer stopped him with a hand against his chest. “Sorry,” he said and shook his head. "I don't want this like that. Well I mean, I do. Duh. But I want you more than like that and dude, that's not how you want me."
Brendon totally fucking hated it when Spencer looked sad. "Spence."
"No, it's cool. It's fine." Spencer’s smile was small and not fine at all and Brendon wanted to kiss him there kind of a lot.
"It might be how I want you," Brendon argued.
"You don’t need-" Spencer started but Brendon was on a roll.
"Oh come on, when I have I ever done anything just to make someone else happy?" That was a total lie, Brendon did stupid shit all the time just to make Ryan or Spencer or Jon smile, but this wasn't like that. Brendon had never had sex with anyone just because they wanted him to.
Brendon gave Spencer his very best smile but Spencer only wavered very slightly. He was kind of a tough crowd.
“I’m not doing anything that’s going to fuck us up,” Spencer said firmly and Brendon didn’t know if he meant the band or Brendon and Spencer but either way, Brendon was firmly behind that plan.
“Hey,” Brendon said. He sat down on the bed and shuffled close until his knees were pressed against Spencer’s. Spencer tipped his head in a listening way. Brendon picked up Spencer’s hand and spoke to his knuckles. “I asked you to be my boyfriend,” he said quietly.
“Yeah,” Spencer said, “But you didn’t mean it.” He sounded cross again, not sad, and weirdly that made Brendon feel better.
“But I asked you. Not Ryan who was like, right there and – no offence dude – looks way more like someone who would be my type. And like, I liked you being my fake boyfriend. It felt kind of cool.” Wow, it was actually really scary telling someone important something important like that.
Spencer was still looking at him doubtfully. Brendon was getting tired of it. “Brendon,” he said.
“Spencer,” Brendon said because seriously, his name was going to get worn out at this rate. “Stop fucking arguing and kiss me again.”
Spencer blinked at him for a second and Brendon cheered – inside – because making Spencer speechless was awesome. Then he moved, sliding his fingers over Brendon’s cheek and around to the back of his neck, pulling them together so their lips were a couple of inches apart and their noses were almost touching.
“Hey, Spencer,” Brendon said, because he was physically incapable of just enjoying a meaningful moment. He looked Spencer in the eye with the most serious expression he could muster. “Will you be my boyfriend?”
Spencer rolled his eyes but Brendon wasn’t fooled; his cheeks were totally pink and he was smiling. Up close, his eyes were really, really blue. “You better mean that,” he said and it was probably meant to be intimidating but he just sounded sort of breathless.
Brendon kissed him.
NB: Title from Secret Smile by Semisonic