When Things Aren’t Right
Category: The Mighty Boosh
Characters: Howard Moon, Vince Noir
Pairing: Howard Moon/Vince Noir
Length: 10-20k words
Notes: I don’t own anything… If I did many things would be different. This story idea actually came to me in a dream…. Yeah I dream about the Mighty Boosh. But I don’t own it. Please don’t sue me. Honestly I only have chage in my wallet. I’m a broke college student.
When Things Aren’t Right by bellemortex
Author’s Notes: So this is my first post after creeping around and reading everyone’s beautiful work. If it isn’t too much please give me some feedback. Good or bad I’ll take it. Thanks
Vince leaned against the counter and alternated between blowing on his tea and taking sips. He was unusually quiet and as Howard looked closer he noticed he was shaking slightly.
Something was wrong, Howard could sense it. He had felt it for a while and struggled to find the start of all of the trouble. Vince just hadn’t been himself. His usually sunny disposition was chilled and aloof. Instead of wearing his loud shirts and tight trousers, he wore baggy ones and one of Howard’s old cardigans. The newspaper was just a prop for Howard, he had stopped reading it the moment Vince entered the room.
“Alright?” Howard asked hoping that for once Vince would answer with honesty. But he had no such luck. Vince merely nodded his uncharacteristic flat head of hair and walked over to the large window in the sitting area.
Howard wanted to press the issue but decided it wasn’t worth it. With a sigh he went back to reading his paper.
When the paper was thoroughly read through and the jazz articles reread several times, Howard headed towards the sitting area to see what Vince was up to.
Vince was seated on the window ledge watching all the people below. His face held very little emotion, this made Howard’s heart drop. He wanted more than anything to find out what was bothering Vince.
He wanted to know more than he wanted to become a famous jazz musician. And that was saying alot. Whatever was hurting Vince, it was hurting him too.
He softly called out to Vince from the door way. Vince didn’t seem to hear him and continued his people watching. Taking another step into the room, one step closer to Vince, Howard called out again.
Vince didn’t turn away from the window but muttered
His voice sounded like it came from someone else. Howard closed the space between them and sat down on the ledge.
“Are you okay? I mean, you seem out of it. Is everything alright? You can tell me if there is something wrong.”
With a small sigh and a faked smile Vince replied.
“I’m just tired. I got in rather late last night. It was a crazy night. I don’t even remember half of it.”
His voice sounded like him again but there was a faint hint of shakiness. Of course, it could be due to the fact that they both knew Vince had returned home quite early the night before. Earlier then he had ever before and to cover it he had snuck in the back door so no one would know.
Howard Moon, man of action, though could not be fooled. For some unknown reason he let the lie slide and simply suggested.
“Maybe you should go back to bed. The best thing for a long night out is a long day in. Yeah?”
Vince shook his head at him.
“I think I’ll take a walk instead. The weather is just so beautiful today.”
He paused, almost as if he contemplated his next sentence.
“You want to come with? You don’t have to, but the offer is open.”
Howard nodded and thought to himself that it was strange how unconfident Vince was being. It was almost as if he expected Howard to turn him down.
Ignoring the little voice in his head yelling “don’t touch me” Howard reached over and pulled Vince into a hug. Vince immediately settled into Howard’s arms without hesitation.
A soft sigh of happiness escaped Vince’s lips as he buried his face in the crook of Howard’s neck. Howard on the other hand couldn’t believe how tiny Vince felt. It was almost like he was a porcelain doll and would break if held the wrong way.
Neither pulled away and they just stood in each other company.
Finally, they ended up pulling away at the same time. Vince had a small but real smile and his face as he walked to his bedroom, presumably to find his coat.
Much to Howard’s surprise when Vince walked out of the bedroom he was wearing different clothes. He was wearing tight black jeans and a vibrant blue shirt that brought out his eyes in an amazing way. Vince looked more like himself then he had in weeks. Howard thanked whatever higher powers for this tiny miracle.
Vince gave him a weird look and headed towards the door. When the door opened Howard snapped out of his trance and grabbed his coat, almost falling down the stairs to catch up with Vince. As Howard walked next to him, he swore to himself would get to the bottom of this problem.
Author’s Notes: New chapter and one step closer to the truth…
Wow that was cryptic!!
It was one of the most beautiful days Vince had ever seen. The sun was big and bright in the sky, though Vince envied the sun for its eternal happiness. Slowly he and Howard walked through the park and just spent time together.
Vince did feel bad for being so distant towards Howard, but it had to be done. He just couldn’t tell Howard that he was leaving in three weeks. Of course, a voice in the back of his head said that Howard would eventually find out when Vince wasn’t there anymore. But Vince silenced that voice and tried to enjoy his day the best he could.
They ended up on the other side of town at an old café. The waitress was a young teenager that kept batting her eyelashes at Vince, who didn’t even try to look interested. Howard had to stifle a laugh when the waitress asked for his phone number and Vince simply said no.
Clearly defeated she took their order. Howard ordered his black coffee and Vince opted for a hot chocolate with whip cream. Throughout the day they had made small talk about insignificant things. However, every time there was a pause Howard itched to ask Vince what was wrong. There were so many reasons floating through Howard’s head that he didn’t even hear Vince say his name.
“If you could do one thing before you died what would it be?”
“What brought this on?”
“I was just wondering. That’s all”
“Well, little man, I don’t plan on dying anytime soon. But, if I had to choose something I would leave this city and travel the world. Just leave everything behind, do what I want when I want.”
There was a pause and Vince glared over his raised cup. Howard hardly noticed this and took a long sip of his coffee. Vince spoke through clenched teeth.
“Really is that how you feel? Nothing here is worth staying for? I understand.”
With a growl, Vince rose from the table and threw his hot chocolate at Howard. All conversation stopped and all eyes focused on the scene unfolding.
“I honestly thought I meant something to you Howard. But, I guess I was wrong. Wouldn’t be the first time. You make me sick.”
Screaming out loud, Vince stormed to the door. Howard quickly realizing his mistake threw money on the table and rushed after him for the second time today. As soon as Vince got through the door he began to run. Howard called after him but got no response.
Just when Howard was about to give up the chase, Vince stopped suddenly.
Howard watched in horror as Vince fell into a heap on the dirty sidewalk. Running faster than he ever had before, Howard went to his side. Vince had broken out in a cold sweat and his eyes moved rapidly under his eyelids.
“Vince. Vince, are you okay?”
Howard got no response and began to shake Vince, willing the electro poof to wake up. Howard held him close and sobbed, not really knowing what to do. He hated feeling helpless.
People just walked by, not even paying attention to them. After what seemed like an eternity Vince’s eyes began to flutter and open. Howard continued to sob while Vince looked at him with impossibly blue eyes.
Vince sounded shaky but he held his voice together. He shifted slightly getting comfortable in Howard’s arms. With his sobs subsided Howard continued to clutch Vince. It was as if his life depended on it.
“Howard, can we get up now? My clothes are getting dirty and these jeans are brand new.”
Nodding slowly as if he didn’t trust himself to talk, Howard stood and then pulled Vince off the ground and into his arms. Instead of keeping his normal distance for Vince, Howard kept an arm around his waist the entire walk home.
People gave them weird looks but either Vince didn’t noticed or didn’t care. Howard knew he didn’t care as long as he was there to catch Vince if he fell again. Silently Howard promised himself that he would insist that Vince told him what was going on once they got back to the flat.
With little difficulty they got back to the flat. Howard demanded that Vince sit on the couch and rest while he made tea.
The turning of pages coming from the other room reached Howard’s ears. Taking this as a good sign Howard took his time making the tea and contemplating how to address the rather looming issue.
Why had Vince passed out?
A thought struck him as he poured the hot beverages.
Why didn’t Howard bring Vince to the hospital?
That idea didn’t even cross his mind.
The noise of the television turning on brought Howard out of his sudden trance. He really needed to talk to Vince. He took a deep breath and walked slowly into the room.
The lies ended here and now. Howard wanted, no needed, to know the truth.
Even if it hurt him in the end.
Author’s Notes: On with the third chapter! I like reviews but if you don’t want to review its chill. Thanks for reading!
Even though the magazine was open on Vince’s lap he wasn’t really looking at it. His mind was definitely elsewhere.
As much as Howard wanted to stand in the doorway and watch Vince, the tea was burning his hands and he desperately wanted to put it down on the table.
Vince looked up and nodded his thanks. This left the room painfully silent. And silence was something that rarely happened between them. Howard was thinking of way to delicately bring up this situation, while Vince was thinking of a good excuse for what had happened. Neither knew where to start or how to end once it begun.
The TV continued its mindless blundering in the background. Howard just couldn’t stand it any longer and broke the silence none too gently.
“Vince, what is going on? I want to know. You have been acting absolutely prosperous lately. I just want to help you but I can’t if you keep on blocking me out. Vince, please.”
Vince immediately dropped his gaze to the floor and shook his head.
“It’s nothing. I told you everything is fine. Really I’m telling you the truth.”
“Vincent Noir,” Vince cringed at his full name being used.
“You are not leaving this room until you tell me what is wrong with you. You passed out on the sidewalk and you expect me to just let it go? Oh, I don’t think so. Tell me NOW!”
Howard got so angry that he stood up and screamed at Vince. He inwardly cringed at how much he said like a parent yelling at a teenager who was hiding something.
Instead of getting upset Vince just sat there and kept a straight face. If anything he seemed to go into his own little world not even paying any attention to Howard.
“Howard it is nothing. Just leave it alone okay? I’m going to lie down.”
Vince stood up and walked off calmly. Howard, on the other hand, was completely speechless. He was shocked, he had expected Vince to explode or get angry. But instead he just walked off. After a few minutes Howard came to his senses and made his way to Vince’s room.
He knocked quietly on the door in case Vince really had fallen asleep. The door opened a tiny bit and Vince stood blocking the room behind him.
“Yeah? What do you want?”
Howard is taken back by the animosity in Vince’s words. He tried to push past Vince to get into the room, but Vince wouldn’t let him.
“Howard, tell me what you want.”
“The truth” He said swallowing loudly. “I want the truth from you once and for all.”
With much effort Howard pushed Vince out of the way and walked into his room. The room even more messy as usual but something wasn’t right. There were boxes littering the floor. Unable to comprehend why the boxes were there Howard looked at Vince for an explanation. With a large reluctant sigh, Vince walked over and sat on his bed.
“Howard, I’m leaving.”
“I’m leaving, going away, moving out. I’m going somewhere else. I can’t stay here anymore. It’s just… it’s too much. I… I… I don’t know what to say.”
Howard stayed silent and looked at Vince who was fidgeting under the stare.
“Say something. I don’t know, yell at me, cry, and beg me to stay, or tell me to go. I don’t care what you say. Just say anything.”
Vince looked up and made eye contact with Howard, there were tears in Vince’s eyes. In the back of Howard’s mind, he realized he had never seen Vince cry before.
“You really want to know Howard?”
Howard nodded with determination.
“Yeah? Well, I’m dying.” Vince began to sob.
“I’m dying. God it sounds so weird to say it out loud.”
Pausing Vince said it again as if trying to understand himself.
“I didn’t tell you because I didn’t want to hurt you. I don’t want you to look at me like I’m a broken doll. Like I’m going to break or die on you or I don’t know. Please don’t hate. No hate me if you want to. It doesn’t matter I’m not going to be here to know. So you can do whatever you want. It doesn’t matter to me. I need to finish packing. I… I…”
Vince broke into loud sobs.
Howard’s mind tried to wrap itself around this new information. Vince was dying. Dying, as in he was going to die. Coming to his senses, Howard collapsed next to Vince on the bed and wrapped his arms around him. The sobs continued to rack Vince’s body. Soon Howard began to cry too.
Slowly the sobs and tears began to subside and they just looked at each other. Howard had so many questions that he wanted to ask.
“What is it?”
Howard asked trying to word it lightly and hoping Vince knew what he was talking about. Howard really didn’t know what he would do without Vince. His life wasn’t complete without him.
“Heart disease. My heart is slowly dying. That’s why I fainted after I ran away from you at the coffee shop. I mean, I’m sorry about that. I shouldn’t have reacted like that. You were just being honest. It’s just hard because I’m not even supposed to be here right now. The doctors said I only had a year and that was fourteen months ago. When I found out, I tried to go about my life like nothing was wrong but I just didn’t have the energy. I had planned to leave the apartment six months ago but I couldn’t bring myself to leave you. I felt so guilty. Even now I take a chance staying here, you could wake up one day and I could be dead. I’m so selfish but I really can’t imagine my life without. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry Howard.”
The only thing he could do was hold Vince closer and begin to sob again.
Then the realization hit Howard at once.
Vince was going to die.
He was going to die soon.
End Notes: Umm yeah…
Thanks for reading. The next part should be up within a week. Meaning I haven’t written it yet. Hope you like it!
Author’s Notes: Okay so I said it would take a week to write the next chapter. That was a lie. It took me less than 24 hours to write this.
When Vince’s breathing became even and soft, Howard laid him down and tried to leave the room. However the moment Howard let go of Vince, he woke up.
“Please stay. Please just hold me.”
Howard nodded and pulled the duvet back and slid in. Vince immediately attached himself to Howard and drifted back off to sleep. On the other hand, Howard took this time to watch Vince sleep. He looked so peaceful and quiet.
Thoughts began to race in Howard’s head suddenly, pieces of the Vince shaped puzzle fell delicately into place. All the weird mannerisms that Howard had observed was Vince just trying to hold it together.
Sure, Howard was upset that Vince had kept this from him but in a way he couldn’t blame him. Vince truly and deeply cared for him and just wanted to protect him from the pain that happens when someone dies.
Slowly as Howard’s mind slowed down and began to think jazzy thoughts, he fell asleep. A single thought crossed his mind before he slept.
This feels right.
The sun began to creep silently into the night sky. The happy rays of light woke Howard from his slumber only to find he was alone in the bed. Trying not to panic, he listened for the shower or any telltale signs of life in the flat. All that met him was silence. Howard felt the panic set in.
He had to find Vince. In his haste, Howard’s legs got caught in the blankets and he tumbled to the floor in a heap. Painstakingly he extracted himself from his self-induced capture.
Howard rushed around the flat afraid that when he turned the next corner Vince would be on the floor or something horrific like that.
Vince’s room, nothing. Howard’s room, nothing. Bathroom, nothing. Kitchen, nothing. The last room was the sitting room.
With a deep breath Howard toppled into the room.
To his greatest relief, there sat Vince perched once again on the window sill watching the sun rise. He was wrapped in a blanket from the couch and his eyes glistened. Howard slowly walked to him and placed a hand on Vince’s shoulder. Without looking back Vince placed his hand over Howard’s.
“It’s so beautiful. I mean, I love watching the sun rise. It means I made it another day. It makes me happy to know that I’m still alive. Do you think there are sun rises where I’m going?”
Vince sounded so innocent, as he said the last part. But Howard didn’t want to think about where Vince was going. He didn’t want to think about life without Vince; however, he felt he should at least answer Vince.
“I’m sure there are, little man. I’m sure they’re even more beautiful than the ones here.”
Finally tearing his eyes away from the sun rise, Vince looked over his shoulder and looked at Howard. He smiled softly at Howard’s appearance; clearly he had rolled out of bed in a panic because his clothes were all wrinkled.
“Howard, come sit with me. Please.”
Vince moved forward on the ledge so Howard could sit behind him. Without a second thought Howard pulled Vince into his lap and Vince happily obliged. Vince rested his head on Howard’s shoulder and Howard pressed a small kiss to his temple. Smiling, they watched the sun continue to rise in silence. Slowly people began coming out of their houses and began their days. The world continued around them for now.
They both knew that this moment would stay fresh in their minds forever. Nothing could take this away from them. Vince snuggled closer to Howard marveling in how warm he was. Howard chuckled quietly and tightened his grip on Vince.
Suddenly, Vince grabbed Howard’s hand and placed it over his heart. Turning his head to look at Howard, Vince said.
“I know it’s not healthy but you have always had my heart and you always will. I mean it, always and forever.”
Tears began to fall from Howard’s eyes and landed on Vince’s shoulder. Vince couldn’t help but smile slightly.
“Don’t cry silly. Be happy.”
Trying to keep the mood light Howard laughed but the laugh only brought on more tears. Eventually he was sobbing into Vince’s shoulder. Vince shifted so he could face Howard better and pulled him close.
“Please, Howard, stop crying. Crying just doesn’t suit you. Don’t think about the sad, think happy. Look at me I’m happy just being here, how about you just be happy to be here with me. Okay?”
All Howard could do was nod. He couldn’t figure out why Vince was so calm about this. He knew that Vince was the Sunshine Kid but if he was Vince, he would be a mess.
When the sun was past the horizon, Howard and Vince made their way towards the kitchen to find breakfast. With minimal begging Vince got Howard to make him pancakes. Blueberry ones to be exact. They began to fall into their old pattern of banter and fake insults. It felt good especially when things suddenly got so jumbled. The only difference was that when Howard showed fake hurt, Vince would just walk over and kiss him on the cheek. Howard couldn’t hold back a smile after that.
Vince had decided that he wanted to go to the park again. So they get dressed and made their way outside. They walked arm in arm towards the park with smiles on their faces. It was another beautiful day and the sun seemed to shine even brighter than it had before. They found an open bench and sat down. A thought crossed Howard’s mind and couldn’t help but ask Vince.
“Where were you going to go? You know you said you were leaving. I was wondering that last night.”
Vince looked thoughtfully at Howard.
“The hospital, they were going to set up a hospice room for me. They had pleaded for me to go months ago but… you know I didn’t go. I finally got the courage to start packing my things though. I was really going to go this time. Of course I think if I don’t they will send someone to find me.”
They both laughed at that but then the moment turned serious again. Howard asked Vince another question.
“Can I come with you? Is that okay? You can say no, it’s okay.”
“You… you want to stay with …me?”
“More than anything in the world.”
Vince’s eyes filled with tears but they were happy tears.
Howard smiled while he held Vince’s small hand in his and
“We’ll go together.”
End Notes: Hope you like. I think there will be three or four more chapters. As for the ending, there are three different possiblities. I might write all three and then choose afterwards. Thanks for reading! And umm reviews are nice…
Author’s Notes: Chapter 5. Hope you enjoy it!
With a renewed amount of energy Vince and Howard began to put all of Vince’s things in the boxes. This was easier said than done of course. Vince’s room was in shambles and there was too much to place in the limited number of boxes they had. Vince actually didn’t put up a fight when Howard suggested not packing certain things. They spent the whole day sorting it out.
In total there were only five boxes to bring with them. Collectively they decided that Vince would go to the hospital in two days. Howard wanted to do something really special for Vince but couldn’t figure out what.
During dinner, Vince asked Howard the same question he had before in the coffee shop.
“So honestly if you were dying what would you want to do before you were gone? If you could do anything in the world. There are no limitations just you and your deepest longing.”
Howard thought for a while, he wanted to really think before he answered. Although he knew that Vince wouldn’t be upset this time, no matter what he said. So many things that Howard wanted to do rushed through his mind. He landed on the one he really wanted.
“I would want to spend the rest of my time with the people that loved me the most. Like My parents and of course you. I want to keep everyone close. It wouldn’t matter what we did just time spent together is enough.”
Vince smiled it was a good answer. He really admired Howard, even though he would never tell Howard that. Howard smiled right back glad he could please Vince. Howard practically lived his life trying to please Vince one way or another.
“Vince, what would you do?”
Without having to think about it Vince answered,
“Get married and watch the sun rise every day. Well that’s two things really. But before it’s over, I want to say good bye to everyone. Well, most of my friends have ditched me because I don’t go out any more. But, you know that don’t you? You know that I have been sneaking back into the flat early.”
“Yeah, I know.”
Howard nodded to reiterate his statement.
“Of course, you know. I don’t know why I tried to hide it from you. I really should have just told you at the beginning. I’m sorry. Really I am.”
“Vince, stop apologizing. It’s not your fault, okay. You just wanted to prevent me getting hurt. And I appreciate that.”
“Okay, okay I’ll stop blaming myself. What would I do without you Howard?”
They both smiled softly.
“Better question, Vince what am I going to do without you?”
Vince sighed and closed his eyes. When he opened his eyes, his mind seemed far off and thinking of other things.
“I don’t know. Promise me something.”
“When I am gone I want you to move on. Find someone else who will love you. Live your life like I never existed. Live your life how you have always wanted to. Go out and become a proper musician, expand stationary village or something. Move far away if you have to. Forget me, please Howard, and just forget.”
Howard was shocked to hear Vince of all people say this. He knew that never ever could he forget Vince. Vince had been there for him through everything. They were two halves of a whole.
Vince watched with wide eyes as Howard processed what he had been told to do. Vince really did want Howard to forget him.
Sometimes, he wished that they had never met. He wished that he had never paid attention to Howard when they were in school. He wanted to go back and disappear during that week they spent apart. He hated himself for staying so long with Howard, he felt weak that he couldn’t leave.
Thinking back Vince remembered when he found out that he wasn’t well. It was hard but he took it in stride. He vowed to himself that he would leave the flat in two months. Hell, he even found another flat to live in by himself. He had a new live planned out. He would make Howard hated him and sever the ties forever.
But just as he was about to start what he referred to as “the fight” Howard walked in carrying a present for Vince. He was thoroughly distracted and didn’t remember what he was supposed to do until after Howard had fallen asleep on the couch. So he put it off until the next day, but there would always be a new excuse for not telling Howard. He just wanted the excuses to stop.
Sure, he was happy that Howard wanted to stay with him at the hospital. He was happy that Howard had forgiven him. But once he was gone, he just wanted Howard to move on. He really only wanted the best for Howard, even if the best meant being without him. Sure, Howard would be upset and in pieces but Howard needed to pick the pieces up and move on. All of these thoughts brought tears to his eyes. They fell delicately and landed on his lap.
Howard’s voice brought Vince out of his inner ramblings.
“I am sorry but I have to break your promise. I will never forget about you. You will be on my mind every single day. And I would never want to forget you. Yes, my life will go on and I will probably hate myself for still being alive but you will never leave me thoughts. And even though you won’t physically be here, you will be in heart and in my memories. And I will never ever love someone the way I love you, ever. You saved me from myself more times than I care to remember. Please let’s not talk about this right now. As someone wise said to me once, ‘Crying just doesn’t suit you. Don’t think about the sad, think happy.’ Okay?”
Needing the comfort of a warm body Vince stood up and walked over to Howard. Howard opened his arms in a warm welcoming gesture and scooped the smaller man up into his arms.
It was at that moment that Howard knew what he wanted to do for Vince. It was something that would take some planning but in the end hopefully would all work out. Smiling he looked down at Vince. When their eyes met Vince gave him a strange look.
“What are you smiling at?”
Laughing Howard replied,
“You’re beautiful when you cry. Hell you are beautiful when you do anything and everything. I guess crying is no different.”
Vince had the grace to look horrified but quickly recovered by pushing Howard away more forcefully than either imagined he could.
Even though Vince’s face was serious his eyes were sparkling with laughter. He reached out again to push Howard, who was still sitting in his chair. However, Howard was quicker and grabbed Vince’s wrist, effectively pulling Vince into his lap. Shocked Vince just sat down. Taking his opportunity, Howard turned Vince’s face towards him and kissed him. Sparks seemed to flow between them and Vince shifted so he faced Howard better. Finally out of breath they pulled away with smiles on their faces.
Howard brushed Vince’s long hair away from his face and brushed his lips against Vince’s again.
“I love you, Vince. Is that okay?”
“It’s more than okay. It’s wonderfully perfect.”
“You’re wonderfully perfect.”
Reaching out and grabbing Howard’s hand, Vince said.
“No, we are wonderfully perfect, together.”
They both giggled and started washing the dishes. But just under the surface, they both were worried what tomorrow would bring.
Sadly, tomorrow would be Vince’s last day in the flat ever. Howard would catch Vince looking around, taking everything in silently. He knew that Vince would never see the flat again. The moment he was in the hospital that is where he would spend the rest of his life. But Howard knew it wouldn’t be that bad because Vince was not alone.
No matter what happened they would get through it together.
End Notes: Reviews are welcome and tears (if any. I didn’t think this one was as sad but nonetheless) can be placed in the Tear Jar on your way out. Thank you for reading!
Okay I think 3 more chapters will finish the story nicely. The next one might be up by the end of the week. But after that I really can’t promise anything because I got a summer job and I will be working more then 40 hours a week. Translation My life sucks this summer.
Sorry I was rambling!
Author’s Notes: Wow this took me forever. Alot happens in this chapter!
That night after Vince fell asleep, Howard slipped out of bed and went up to the roof. Sitting there watching the stars, Howard really tried to think about all that had been happening. He began to imagine a life without Vince, a lonely life. Sure he would meet other people but no one could be Vince. Vince was the sunshine to Howard’s rain clouds. Vince was always there to catch him when things didn’t work as he had planned. Vince was there to smile when Howard thought that life had given up on him. Vince was and always would be Howard’s world.
Howard didn’t realize he was crying until the tears started to stain his shirt. He sighed and wiped the offending tears away. As an off thought he told himself that he needed to stop crying in front of Vince. He needed to be strong for Vince. If he needed to cry he would just have to leave the room from now on.
Remembering the real reason that he had made his way up to the roof, Howard began to create his plan for Vince’s last day in the apartment. Then he thought back to the idea he had come up with at dinner and silently he worked out what he was going to do.
Finally, Howard made his way back to bed and quietly slipped under the duvet, pulling Vince’s lithe body close. Eyes fluttering shut, Howard fell into a deep sleep filled with jazz notes and smiling Vinces.
The next day was spent lying around the flat. That morning Vince had gotten up to watch the sun rise as usual. However, just before the sun cleared the horizon strong arms wrapped around him and Howard placed a gentle kiss on his jaw. Together they brought in the new day. It was something that was so important to Vince, he loved the fact that Howard was willing to stay with him. A long time ago Vince had come to terms that he was not going to be alive much longer but now that Howard was so supportive, it made the fact harder to accept.
Vince kept thinking is this, what dying feels like?
Knowing that the one person you love will be left alone in this world while you go on to the next world.
Would they meet again in the next life?
Is there a next life?
What if this is it?
What if there is only one chance to find the one true love of your life?
If that is true, why did he wait so long to tell Howard how he felt?
Would things be different?
What if they had never met?
Where would they both be?
Would Howard have found someone to love him as Vince did?
So many what ifs and would thats crossed Vince’s mind that he completely zoned out. He didn’t even hear Howard calling out to him. Finally Vince turned his attention to the one person who knew him better than he knew himself.
“Alright, little man?”
It was then that Vince noticed the tears streaming down his face. Not trusting himself to speak, Vince just nodded. He turned to face the sunrise again and tried to memorize every singular detail about this moment. He knew that there would not be many more moments like that.
Although nothing grand was accomplished Howard made sure that Vince was happy and that was reason enough to waste a perfectly good day. But neither thought that the day was wasted. It was time to spend together, it was time to say goodbye without those exact words. It was time to say as many I love you’s as possible and holding each other closer than ever before.
When night fell they climbed to the roof to look at the stars. Howard looked back and forth from the stars and Vince. Neither had ever taken the time to really watch the stars before this night.
It was a perfect night; the sky was clear and cloudless. There was a slight wind tickling their faces and blowing through their hair. Vince giggled every time there was a gust which made Howard laugh. The silence was comfortable but Howard could tell Vince was thinking. Vince’s eyes seemed to be searching from something, whether it was in his mind or on the horizon Howard couldn’t tell.
“You know I always thought I would die young. I could never imagine myself as old. When I was little I tried to picture how I would look and the image always came up blank. The thought didn’t scare me though; it was just how things were going to be. But then after we met I knew that for however long I was here for I would spend it by your side. There was never a doubt in my mind. And then I started to think of the future and I saw us together growing older and I thought I was cured. I thought we would live forever and only have each other for company. But I was fine with that; I welcomed it as long as I was with you. It was right about that time that I found out that my life was ending slowly one day at a time. It was a shocker, to have planned out the rest of my life with someone and then having that future taken away violently. Have you ever imagined the future, who you would be, where you would be in life? Wow, I’m sorry I didn’t mean to ramble like that. It just all fell out like some kind of word vomit.”
Vince looked embarrassed and laughed uncertainly like he was just caught with his hand in the cookie jar. Howard didn’t really respond to him at first, all he did was nod. The silence came back and settled around them. Vince wasn’t planning on blurting all that out. It just happened. His biggest fear was scaring Howard away now that he had finally caught Howard. Biting his thumb, Vince tried to sit still and wait for Howard’s reply, which was no easy task for Vince.
Howard reached over and pulled Vince closer and hugged him tightly.
“Honestly Vince, I am exactly where I want to be at this point in my life. I found someone to love me unconditionally and I am happy. I must admit though that I thought I would have you for a little bit longer. But I am going to take this time and make the most of time. Time is precious and it has taken this happening for me to realize that. You are the best thing that I could have asked for. From the moment I met you I knew that you were different.”
Vince shot Howard a questioning look.
“Don’t look at me like that. You know what I meant. It is a good different. It means you’re not the same as everyone else who has come into my life. You are the only one who has left a lasting impression on me. You have changed me for the better. If you had never shown up I don’t know where I would be and I don’t even want to think about it. I definitely would not be as happy as I am right now sitting here holding you in my arms. And for the record, I could not imagine you getting old and wrinkly. And I definitely do not want to be there when your hair started to fall out, you would probably throw a fit and kill someone. Maybe like you said you were meant to die young. Some people are like that, they just know.”
“Howard thanks. For everything I mean, you taking care of me, helping me pack, and offering to stay with me. I was thinking about it last night before I fell asleep and I think you might be my guardian angel. And this isn’t something that just happened I think all along you have been watching over me. I was incomplete before I met you and then the moment we locked eyes in school something in me clicked and I was whole.”
“I know what you mean. It felt like the last puzzle piece of life fell in place. Hell, it was magical.”
Another gust of wind blew against them as they smiled and laughed. Vince shivered involuntarily and Howard decided it was time to go inside. Quietly they got ready for bed and lay down in each other’s arms. Smiling they fell asleep at the same moment.
The next morning Howard woke up before Vince and got dressed. Quietly he moved all the boxes into the sitting room. The sun hadn’t even started to rise as Howard made his way into the kitchen. He packed a few snacks and some wine and placed them by the door. Howard then tiptoed into the bedroom and woke Vince up.
“Vince, darling, time to wake up. Come on open your eyes.”
Vince opened one eye and looked groggily at Howard. Howard just smiled and brushed Vince’s hair out of his eyes.
“Time to get up and get dressed come on.”
“Why?” Vince croaked out.
“Why you ask? I can’t tell you for it is a surprise. So get dressed and you can find out.”
With slight annoyance, Vince got out of bed and started pulling on whatever clothes were closest by. Finally taking the time to glance at the clock Vince noticed what time it actually was. 3:45 in the morning.
“Why are you waking me up this early? If you think that we are going to the hospital right now, you are very, very wrong. At this rate I will probably miss the sunrise. I am not going to miss the last sunrise I will ever see from this flat. Do you hear me?”
Howard didn’t say a word and grabbed Vince’s arm pulling him out of the room. Vince tried to fight against Howard but there was no point. Vince was so weak and even if he wasn’t Howard was still stronger. Vince continued to pout as Howard loaded him into the car.
The sky began to lighten and Vince went into panic mode. He yelled at Howard telling him how much he hated him and how Howard would regret this for the rest of his life. Howard on the other hand stayed quiet and continued to drive.
“Howard, pull this car over right now. The sun is starting to come up. I can’t miss it Howard. I can’t. Please, stop. This isn’t funny. If I miss the sunrise then I don’t know if I’ll make it through the day. I have watched the rise every single day since the doctors told me. Howard, pull this fucking car over. Now. I hate you.”
Vince was completely hysterical. He was grabbing at Howard and the steering wheel trying to make the car pull over. It was really bothering Vince that Howard didn’t seem to care at all. Howard drove on and didn’t blink when Vince pulled at the wheel.
“I hate you. I hate you. I hate you. Howard, I don’t ever want to talk to you again. You have officially ruined my life. I hope you are happy with yourself. I hate…”
Vince stopped in the middle of his sentence when he saw the sight before him. Howard had taken him to a cliff overlooking the ocean and the sun was just beginning to clear the horizon. It was the most beautiful thing he had ever laid eyes on. Immediately his vision began to blur as the tears formed in his eyes.
He tried to speak to apologize but the words couldn’t leave him mouth, he site was too captivating. Then Howard smiled and brought out a blanket for them to sit on. After laying it out, Howard nudge Vince towards it.
“You have no idea how hard it was not to tell you where we were going.”
Vince laughed embarrassingly.
“Sorry for yelling at you. It’s amazing. It’s just wow.”
“I was trying to come up with something special to do for you and then the idea just hit me and I thought that you might like a change of scenery. My parents used to bring me out here was I was small. It was beautiful then but with you here it is even more so. Go on sit down.”
Howard poured the wine and sat down next to Vince. Throwing an arm over Vince when he snuggled close.
“Howard really this is perfect. Thank you.”
Vince kissed Howard reiterate the point.
That was the last thing they said for a while. The color reflected so vibrantly off of the water and the breeze was so delicate and light. Howard held Vince as tight as he could and never wanted to let go. These past few days had been the best days of his life and he really hoped they were for Vince too. Even though the sunrise was absolutely beautiful that wasn’t the real reason Howard dragged Vince out here.
Howard got up and went to the car leaving Vince a little confused. When he came back his hand was in his pocket. Slowly he knelt down on one knee.
“I know that we really haven’t been together that long but you are always on my mind. They say that the best couples start off as friends and if that is true then we have a very unfair advantage. I knew from the moment we met in school that I was going to spend the rest of my life with you. That first time I heard you speak I just had to ask who you were. And then when you wanted to be friends with me I was so shocked. Vincent Noir, I am sorry that it has taken me this long to tell you my feelings but I love you. And I want to know if you will be mine, always and forever.”
“Howard. I… I… Yes.”
Vince leapt into Howard’s arms and began to cry with happiness. Howard pulled him back to look him in the eyes.
“You have made me the happiest person alive.”
They both smiled and Vince finally looked down at the engagement ring. It was a beautiful sapphire that matched the color of his eyes. It fit perfectly as if it was made for him.
“This is my great grandmother’s engagement ring. My grandmother gave it to me right before she passed away and told me that when I found the person I love to give it to them. I never found someone worthy of it until I met you.”
“Thanks for everything. I don’t think I can thank you enough. You are so wonderful.”
With content smiles they kissed and finished watching the sunrise in front of them. Neither of them wanted to leave once the sun rose. But there were places to go and things that needed to be done. Vince had too many things going on in his mind to really concentrate on one thing. He was engaged; he never thought that he would be engaged.
When they got back at the flat, Howard packed up the car while Vince walked around the flat. Finally Howard coaxed Vince into the car and they drove off.
They headed off towards their next adventure.
And it would happen whether they were ready or not.
End Notes: Thanks you for reading!
I really appericate it! Usual things Tears are to be placed in the Tear Jar. And reviews are always welcome!!!
Author’s Notes: Here is the next chapter. Hope you like it!
The hospital was stark white and Vince looked so out of place. This wasn’t right Howard thought to himself. Vince didn’t belong here.
He should be at the flat in his colorful little room with the walls that he had colored all over. When Howard walked into his room first saw what the walls looked like he almost had a heart attack. He immediately demanded that Vince scrub the walls until they were clean again. But Vince just laughed and said that it was his room and if he wanted to paint and color on the walls he was entitled too.
But this white walled room haunted them both. Vince was standing completely still and listened to what the nurse was telling him about the rules of the hospital. He nodded and spoke small yeah’s and okays. When the nurse left the room Vince just turned to Howard with a lost look on his face.
“I can’t stay here.”
“You can’t stay here”
They both spoke at the same time. It was such a silly coincidence that they burst into laughter. But both knew they spoke the truth. The two men walked towards the other until they were standing as close to each other without touching. And in a moment Vince had his arms wrapped securely around Howard’s neck. In the safety of Howard’s arms, Vince spoke again.
“Please don’t make me stay here. The walls are so… It’s not home. I want to go home. I want to plan our wedding and everything. And I don’t want to have to get married in the lame chapel downstairs.”
Vince looked up at Howard with his eyes wide and pleading.
“Take me home. Take me anywhere but here. Howard, I don’t want to die here.”
Silently pulling Vince closer Howard whispered,
Howard kept his arm around Vince’s waist and grabbed a box to carry out to the car. They didn’t say a word to the staff and walked out of the hospital for good. With Vince safely in the car, Howard went back to grab the other boxes.
Sure, he was happy that Vince was coming home but he wasn’t so sure that leaving the hospital was the best idea. Here the nurses could care for Vince better then he could. But they didn’t love him, Howard loved him. Hell, Howard was going to marry him and love him as long as he could.
When Howard was walking back in the car with the last box, one of the nurses, the one that showed them to the room, asked him what he was doing. As quick as a rabbit Howard jumped in the car, the nurse trailed right behind him.
Vince’s laughter surrounded them as Howard shifted the car into 1st then 2nd. Then they were gone out of the parking lot with an angry nurse trying to chase them down but failing.
“That was fucking genius.”
Vince was breathless and smiling ear to ear.
Howard, on the other hand, could not believe that he had just stolen Vince out of the hospital.
Even when they got back to the flat, Vince was still giggling and throwing spare glances at Howard, to see if he was laughing too. Vince was met with an unusually wide eyed Howard.
Then laughter was still in Vince’s voice but his face was serious. He couldn’t understand why Howard suddenly clamed up. Did he do something wrong? Howard was silent as he brought in the boxes.
Howard ignored Vince and sat down on the couch with his head in his hands. Whispered words reached Vince’s ears. Something along the lines of God help me what have I done. Vince stood completely still for a moment and then went and knelt in front of his fiancé.
“What is it? What’s wrong?”
Slowly Vince put his hands over Howard’s and felt the telltale dampness of tears. A small sob escaped Howard’s lips before he spoke.
“I shouldn’t have done that. I really shouldn’t have. I can’t take care of you like they can. What if something happens to you and you die because I don’t know what to do to save you. Vince you need to go back.”
Vince looked down and then looked up thoughtfully.
“Okay. I’ll go back.”
Howard’s head popped up to see if Vince was being serious. Vince couldn’t really want to go back could he?
Then he noticed the evil little smirk on Vince’s lips.
“I will go back after we get married. Then and only then. Hell, I’ll go back without a fight. You’re right no matter how much you love me you can’t give me the care I need. For now, let’s get ready to plan a wedding, okay?”
Howard nodded and pulled himself together. Then he stood up pulling Vince with him. In a burst of excitement he grabbed Vince dipped him and gave him a sloppy kiss. Vince began to giggle as he did while they were in the car driving away from the hospital.
They went to the kitchen and each started on their own tasks. Howard began making lunch while Vince called a few old friends that owed him favors. Vince ended up finding a wedding planner who was more than willing to plan their wedding for no charge. The only requirement was that the wedding planner could bring guests to the wedding.
During lunch Vince went on about all the good luck he had had and how this wedding was going to the wedding of the year. He said people were going to be lined up to see them get married. All this talk made Howard kind of nervous. He was never good with crowds and he had wanted the wedding to be small and intimate. So much for that plan.
Vince spoke nonstop until dinner time. Howard was getting anxious about the wedding and they hadn’t even started planning it.
Even though he had a weird feeling about it Howard didn’t want to tell Vince incase he thought that Howard didn’t love him. And he didn’t want Vince to think that.
Howard was in the kitchen making delicious fish when Vince, who was in the other room, stopped talking. Slightly worried but trying not to overreact Howard called out to him and began to walk into the other room. Vince’s eyes were wide and his hand grabbed at his chest.
Vince whispered and his eyes began to water.
Howard fear held him to the spot he was standing. His mind raced, thinking of what could be happening and how could he fix it. Should he call the hospital again? He really wasn’t cut out for this.
And then as quick as it came on it stopped. Vince brought his hand down and looked at Howard.
As soon as Vince spoke Howard’s legs were back in his control and he rushed over to Vince. Both were so relieved they started to cry. Vince jumped into Howard’s arms causing them both to fall backwards onto the carpet. Vince hid his face in the crook of Howard’s neck.
“Is this what dying feels like?”
Vince whispered into Howard’s ear, his voice quivering.
Howard pulled back to look into Vince’s eyes.
“No Vince this is what living feels like.”
“But it hurts.”
With a sad smile Howard replied.
“I know it usually does.”
They sat in each other’s arm for a while before Howard remembered he had been cooking and the fish should almost be done.
“Why don’t you go lie down and I’ll bring you supper in bed?”
Vince shook his head no.
“I want to eat at the table.”
Vince turned his head to look at Howard.
“I want to eat there as long as I can. When I can’t then I’ll eat in bed, okay?”
There was a hostile tone in his voice but Howard ignored it and said okay.
They sat in silence, it was an odd silence. Vince hardly ate anything on his plate, he just pushed everything around. Howard didn’t eat either, his mind raced to fast to try and say the right thing to Vince to calm him down. Finally Vince stretched his arm across the table to Howard. Immediately Howard put his hand over Vince’s and they both smiled brightly.
They spoke at the same time like they did when they were in the hospital earlier. And for the second time in the day they burst into laughter.
“I love you”
Howard spoke and brought Vince’s hand to his lips.
“I love you more.”
Vince tried to one up him.
“I love you most. I win.”
Vince faked a pout but quickly the pout turned to a smile.
“Well I will just have to fix that now wont I?
Their laughter surrounded them and all past hostility and anger completely vanished.
End Notes: I have to say sorry for the long time inbetween updates but my dog who was like my little sister passed away and its been kind of tough. And my job to be nice is a complete bitch so yeah. I really don’t know when the next update will be. But I hope you liked this new chapter!
Author’s Notes: New Chapter!
Even though Vince got up to watch the sunset each morning, Howard would get nervous if he woke up and Vince wasn’t in bed. Sometimes after the sun had rose and Howard was still in bed Vince would lie back down with him so he wouldn’t worry. They lived for each day and each other.
Sometimes they would talk about the wedding and what they wanted to do about certain things. Howard tried to give Vince whatever he wanted. There was really only one argument, the amount of people. Vince of course wanted as many people as possible while Howard wanted as little as possible.
In the end it was Vince who compromised and gave into Howard’s demands. It would be a small and intimate affair. The wedding would be held in a month that would give them enough time to plan everything.
Sometimes they would talk about how Vince was feeling.
That conversation usually ended in someone crying. It was difficult but it needed to be dealt with. Howard watched how everyday Vince seemed to get weaker and thinner. It troubled him and resorted to giving Vince as many fatting foods as possible. Sometimes Vince would reach for a mug and when he lifted it his hands shook.
There were mornings when Howard would get up and check on Vince as he watched the sunrise. Just to check on him, make sure he didn’t need anything. Vince always said no he was fine but his eyes said otherwise. The things that Howard noticed, Vince knew and he was scared.
When the wedding planner, Wendy, arrived at their flat bright and early one morning, Vince greeted her warmly while Howard put on some tea. The three of them sat down and started discussing their ideas. There would be roses and bright colors. One of the biggest decisions was about the time of day that the wedding would take place.
Did they want to have it take place at sunrise or wait till later in the day?
Wendy suggested that they plan it for later in the day because she didn’t think they should share their special time in the morning. She was extremely kind and helpful. She had even booked them at a quaint little church down the road. Vince and Wendy set a date to go and pick out his wedding dress and the bridesmaids’ dresses.
After she left Howard convinced Vince to go for a walk in the park with him. It was colder than usual and the wind was harsh against their skin. Strangely they ended up in the same café as a few weeks before. But this time their conversation was less strained. There were no lingering questions running through their minds. Vince and Howard were calm as they looked out the front window. Vince then turned his attention to Howard.
Vince began jumping in his seat as he spoke.
“Yes, I can’t wait to go pick out the bridesmaids’ dresses and then my dress. It’s going to be amazing. Wendy is taking me to this cute little shop and it’s going to be so much fun!”
“I know little man I was there when you two were talking about it.”
“I know. I just never imagined I would be getting married. There are so many things that I thought I would never get to do. I mean this is exciting and I just want to jump and run and sing and scream.”
Vince began to laugh and smile at Howard. Howard smiled back and held Vince’s hand, happy that his fiancé was so happy.
“When are you going to go and get fitted for your tux? Who’s going to be your best man? Who is going to be the maid of honor? Who’s going to walk me down the aisle? Goodness there is so many things I haven’t thought about…”
Vince rattled off the questions like a young child who went to the zoo for the first time. Vince hardly paused to take breaths. Was he really this excited about the wedding?
He stopped talking at the sound of his name.
“It’s just a wedding. You need to calm down.”
Vince’s eyes narrowed as he continued to look at Howard.
“Just a wedding, eh?”
“That’s not what I meant.”
“Really, then why did you say it? You don’t want to get married, do you? Don’t lie to me I can see it in your eyes when I start talking about it. If you are so reluctant to marry me then why did you propose?”
Vince’s voice held a hint of anger but mostly plain curiosity. Howard gave Vince a long look, taking time to think about the answer.
“I’m just nervous, Vince. I want everything to be perfect. I love you more than anything in the world, that’s why I asked you to marry me. What if I get the chokes when it comes time to say our vows? What if I trip when I walk down the aisle? It scares me that I might mess up the happiest day of our lives.”
There was silence and then Vince began to laugh out loud.
“Even if that did happen it doesn’t matter. All that matters is that you will be waiting for me at the end of that aisle. Please don’t worry. It’s going to be wonderful and at the end we will be married.”
There was a pause and Howard just stared at Vince. Howard tried to come up with the right words to say. He settled with the first three that came to his mind.
“I love you.”
Vince laughed again and squeezed Howard’s hand.
“I love you too.”
Wendy arrived at the flat on a Tuesday morning to whisk Vince away to find the perfect dress. As Vince meticulously picked out his outfit to go shopping in, Howard took this opportunity to talk to Wendy privately. Keeping his voice low so his fiancé wouldn’t hear, Howard ran through the rules she needed to follow.
“Be careful with him if he has an attack call me and I’ll be right there. Even if he says he is fine call me so I know. He shouldn’t run or jump or really do anything physical. Don’t say anything that would upset him. And finally make sure he has fun, he has been talking about today nonstop. He can have whatever dress he picks out. If he doesn’t want a dress anymore then he can have whatever he wants. Hell if he wants to wear a tutu he can. Okay?”
Wendy nodded her agreement.
“You really shouldn’t be so worried about him. He’ll be fine. I’ll look after him.”
“I’ll worry about him if I want to.”
Vince had chosen that moment to emerge from the room like a butterfly from a cocoon. He walked over to Howard and put a hand on his arm.
Vince paused till Howard looked at him.
“I’ll be fine. It’s not my time yet, okay?”
Reluctantly Howard responded.
“Okay little man.”
Quickly Vince turned to Wendy with a wide smile and bright eyes. Wendy smiled back and said,
Vince was too excited to respond and dragged Wendy down the stairs. Just before the front door slammed shut Howard heard a loud love you from Vince.
The dress shop was enormous. Vince was almost overwhelmed when he walked in but quickly recovered. He began darting around picking out different patterns he wanted to try on and others he wanted the bridesmaids to wear. He already knew that he wanted the bridesmaids in pretty blues. So he focused on his own dress. There were so many different colors and styles. Vince tried on pinks, blues, oranges, reds, greens, and whites. He decided that white was the way to go for his dress.
There was one dress the particularly caught his eye. It was white and strapless and everything he had ever imagined wearing. The front of the bodice was covered in iridescent sequins and the back was lace up. He just had to try it on.
The dress fit even better then Vince thought. It really was made for him. As he stood on the platform in front of the mirrors he felt like a princess. When he looked to Wendy for her opinion she just beamed.
The seamstress was pinning in some parts of the dress when suddenly Vince fell to his knees on the platform. His hand gripped his chest and his breath became rapid. The smile that was on his face moments ago vanished. Vince’s eyes were wide with panic and pain. Wendy yelled for someone to call an ambulance.
“I’m fine. It will pass. Just give me a minute.”
Wendy looked on with disbelief, but waited like he asked. Then just as suddenly as it came on it was over and they both breathed a sigh of relief.
“Told you I would be okay.”
As gracefully as possible Vince stood back up on the platform and began to smile again.
“Promise me you won’t tell Howard this. He already worries too much about me.”
Wendy toyed with the idea of promising Vince and telling Howard anyway but she agreed that Howard did worry too much.
Howard was happy when Vince walked through the door. He had spent the last three hours pacing around the flat. Vince’s presence immediately calmed him down. Neither Wendy nor Vince mentioned the episode.
Vince continued to talk about shopping and how he found the perfect dress. When Howard asked him what the dress looked like, Vince wouldn’t tell him. He said that if he told Howard then it would be bad luck. And they didn’t want any bad luck.
Wendy left with promises to come back tomorrow to take Howard out for a tux fitting.
“So what did you do while I was gone?”
Vince asked as they ate dinner.
“Nothing really, waited for you to come home.”
Vince gave him a pointed look.
“You really need to stop worrying so much. It’s not healthy, Howard, really.”
“Do not tell me what to do.”
Howard yelled and stood up.
“I’m going for a walk.”
With a loud bang Howard raced down stairs and out the door, leaving Vince sitting alone at the table.
End Notes: Thanks for reading as always!!
I am back at school so I should have more time to finish this story. I know that I said it was going to end like next chapter but its not. So don’t worry.
Reviews are welcomed and loved.
And fyi the tear jar has been replaced with a tear bucket. My floors were getting wet……