5."You're Afraid Of The World Too"

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My phone was ringing. The familiar tones of an older David Bowie song made me jolt awake. The song abruptly came about from my phone that lay abandoned on my desk across the room.

The first thing I noticed when I swung my legs off my bed to go answer it was the splitting headache I had, laying behind my eyes and right inside my skull. My eyes burned from crying so much last night. I must be dehydrated from the water loss.

I checked the time on my phone. It was almost noon. I'd slept too much, I probably worried Mikey. Looking at my door, I saw that it was open a crack. He probably checked on me before he left.

Second thing I noticed was that Frank was the person calling me.

It was then that I remembered I was supposed to call him first thing in the morning to let him know about the gig we'd discussed, and I groaned when I realized I'd forgotten.

I cleared my throat and answered immediately.

"Frank." My voice was still gravelly from sleep. "I'm so sorry I didn't call, I had a rough night."

I heard Frank sigh with relief. "Thank god you're alive, Lindsey wasn't answering her phone and neither of you showed up at work. I thought something bad night have happened since you carpool, ya know?"

The worry ridden tone of his voice made me feel strange. No one's really fussed like that over me in a long time.

"I'm fine, and so is Lindsey. I think. I haven't seen her but we both took the day off today." Mentioning Lindsey made my almost lose my calm facade. I wanted to wrap myself in my blankets and cry again. But I swallowed the emotion down and willed myself to only focus on Frank's voice. It didn't take much, I enjoyed hearing him speak.

"I'm sorry." He said sheepishly. "I have a really bad habit of thinking the worse case scenario." I could imagine him wringing his hands and biting his bottom lip.

I chuckled but it sounded forced. "It's okay to worry sometimes."

There was a short pause. Frank spoke again in a quieter voice. "Are you alright, Gerard?"

I blinked. "Uh, yeah. I just woke up, I might sound a little out of it."

"Well, your boss did mention to me that Lindsey said you both aren't on good terms right now."

Even when I told Lindsey to stop opening her mouth about my personal business, she still did it. She told Ray about our argument.

He probably thought I was a royal asshole now. Unless she left out the details. But I bet she made it sound like she was the only one hurting over this. I knew I'd been the one to make the wrong move, but she had embarrassed me after all, and my first instinct was to be a little defensive.

I had to stop and give myself a check into reality. She had a right to feel hurt and go to someone to vent about it. I threw too much into her face all at once when it was very uncalled for. Nonetheless, it irritated me.

I sighed with frustration. "No. Her and I aren't on good terms. That wasn't her story to tell, it was just between us two." I may have sounded too sharp when I said that.

Frank sounded taken aback. "O-oh, I'm sorry for bringing that up . . ."

Another thing I learned about Frank Iero; he apologizes for everything.

"No," I argued more softly. "It isn't your fault that you heard about it. It's just," I paused to take a deep breath and lick my dry lips. "I didn't want to seem like the bad guy. Even though I kind of am, she had her own fault in it and-" I stopped myself before pouring everything out to Frank. He'd probably freak out a little. "It's complicated. So many layers are underneath this."

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