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"Patrick? Patrick, pick up, pick up, pick up..." Mikey's not sure if talking out loud helps, especially when Gerard is driving and on his phone, too, trying to explain to their parents.

"Mom, we're heading to Patrick's house, Pete's hurt." Gerard is saying into the phone. Pause. "No, both of us are okay, but Pete... Yeah. Yeah, we'll be home late. It'll be okay. No, don't freak out, don't-"

That might be the worst explanation ever, but Mikey doesn't care. He keeps whispering into his own phone, as if saying Patrick's name enough times will cause the ginger to pick up the phone and explain everything properly.

"Hi, this is Patrick Stump. I'm sorry I can't pick up, but-" Mikey hangs up immediately, and calls again. "Patrick, pick up," He repeats. "Patrick, Patrick,"

"Mikey?" By some sort of miracle, Patrick actually answers, and Mikey wants to cry with relief. "Mikey, we're heading towards Beaumont hospital, and-"

"Is he dead?" Mikey asks, before turning to Gerard (who's still on the phone with Mom), and mouths Beaumont. Gerard nods and Mikey turns attention back to Patrick. "Is he dead?"

"He's unconscious, but they keep telling me he's breathing, but they put an oxygen mask on him, and-"

Mikey closes his eyes. He wants to scream. Or cry. Or fucking jump out of this slow ass car and run to Pete on his own, but he can't, he's trapped, and he feels so suffocated, and if he even sounds like he's in remote pain, Mom might hear, and she would worry, and-

Gee stops the car and pries the phone from Mikey's ear. Mikey didn't notice when Gerard stopped talking to their mom, or when he started tuning out Patrick, but Gerard tells Patrick something about being outside the hospital and hangs up.

They don't say anything for a minute, and finally, Gerard reaches over and takes Mikey's clenched fist and just holds it. "Pete will be okay."

Mikey wants to believe it so badly he just nods.

Pete will be okay.


Pete certainly doesn't look okay.

Pete's eyes are closed. He's wearing a hospital gown, and he's connected to some sort of fluid, but all Mikey sees are the multicolored bruises covering his arms. He has a split lip and a black eye, and Patrick tells Mikey that there were cuts on his back.

His breathing is shallow.

Mikey hates everything about this

He doesn't cry when he holds Pete's hand and sees little cuts all over them.

He doesn't cry hours later, when Gee forces them to go home and admits that Pete looks absolutely horrible.

He's close to crying when Patrick calls later that evening and tells him exactly how Pete got hurt.

But at 4am, Mikey imagines life without Pete, and he starts crying and is afraid he'll never stop.


Mikey thinks about everything he knows about Pete.

Pete's favorite artist is Frank Ocean.

Pete's best friend is Patrick Stump, and they met freshmen year.

Pete likes making up stupid nicknames.

Pete thinks he's selfish.

Pete's mother apparently left when Pete was 14.

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