Title: Smiley(Getting There)
Fandom: High School Musical
Warnings: angst, light slash(yes, finally.)
Diclaimer: Nope, I don't own HSM or Disney. Rub it in.
Characters: Ryan Evans, Chad Danforth, Sharpay Evans, OMC
A/N: Ryan is getting better. Honestly. Just ask Chad.
ETA: This story can be read by itself, or as part of the Horrible!verse. This is part 8.
"What happened?" Sharpay asked as she entered the hospital wing. Chad was sitting in one of the chairs, but stood up as she neared him.
"I don't know," he said, looking sad and lost. "One minute, he was fine. We were fine. And then he just- freaked."
Sharpay sighed and sat down. She was too tired to enter scolding mode. "Have they told you anything yet?"
Chad shook his head. "Just that he's 'stable'. What the hell that's supposed to mean."
"Tell me what happened." She put her arm on his, another un-Sharpay move. The careful touch made Chad spill it.
"I told him that he was right. When he kissed me. That I was the stupid one. And then he smiled at me," Chad smiled as his voice shook.
"He smiled?" Sharpay asked, surprised. "That's the first time since..."
"I know," Chad nodded. "So, I touched his face with my hand. And he was fine then, too, I promise! And then I-" he stopped, his eyes fluttering.
"And then you," Sharpay urged him to continue. They were both talking very quietly now, whether they were aware of it or not.
"And then I told him he had a pretty mouth," Chad whispered and closed his eyes. "And then he freaked out. He just fought to get away from me, and before I knew it, he'd fallen out of the bed and hit his head." A single tear trailed down his face. "I don't know what I did wrong, I just know that it was my fault. Again." The last word he spat out in disgust.
Sharpay opened his mouth to say something, then closed it. She pulled Chad into a hug, and he started sobbing. If anyone was surprised at her actions, it was Sharpay herself. But she just felt so bad for him, and she needed a replacement for Ryan. Of course, no one could ever replace her brother, not really, but this was something. She could comfort, touch, and talk to Chad. They both needed the other.
And that was something, after all.
"Your brother has suffered a concussion," the doctor told Sharpay. "A minor one. He should be fine, but we're gonna keep him here for a couple days more."
She nodded. "Can I see him?"
"Sure," the doctor nodded, and she stepped inside.
"Hey, Ry," she smiled. She didn't expect an answer, and wasn't surprised when she didn't get one either. "How are you feeling?" Another rhetorical question as she went over. Ryan's forehead was bandaged, but otherwise he looked like himself.
Sharpay sat down. "I'm gonna touch your hair now, Ryan."
He let her, and they sat like that for a while. She stroked his hair, he stared at the ceiling.
"What did Chad do, Ryan?" she murmured. "Why were you so scared?"
He looked at her, then, and opened his mouth. It looked like he was about to say something, but then he caught himself and closed it again. Then he sighed, looking sad.
Sharpay couldn't quite hide her disappointment. So close. "Ryan? Chad's sitting outside, he's been waiting. Should I let him in?"
Ryan nodded, which was his version of "YES!" now.
Sharpay quickly got up and peered into the hallway. "Chad, he wants to see you."
Chad got up in a heartbeat, looking slightly hopeful. "Really?"
She couldn't help but smile a little. "Yeah. He even nodded."
Chad beamed. "Hey, Ry," he said as he got in.
Ryan looked at him, blinked a 'hello', and held his gaze.
"I'm really sorry," Chad murmured. "I don't know what I did, but I'm sorry I scared you. Okay? I didn't mean it, whatever I did. And I'll- try not to do it again."
Ryan nodded, looking somewhat ashamed.
"Hey, it's cool man," Chad assured him. He put a hand slowly on Ryan's, so he could see it coming. Ryan didn't flinch at all. Sharpay took Ryan's other hand, the bandaged one.
"Was it that thing I said?" Chad asked quietly. "About your mouth?"
Ryan looked away, his eyes going back to the ceiling. He blinked rapidly.
He's almost crying, Chad thought with dread. "I'll take that as a yes. It's okay, Ry. I won't pry, it's just- now I know. I won't do it again." Chad felt kinda sappy, but by the looks of it, Ryan was right there with him.
"I love you, Ryan," Sharpay whispered, then leaned forward and kissed her brother on the cheek. Ryan smiled, and squeezed both his hands. Chad smiled, too.
The next break-through came three days later. Chad was half asleep, his head leaning on Ryan's pillow. They didn't touch, but Chad could still feel heat radiating from Ryan.
Chad had been lying like this, snoozing, when he felt it. Ryan's hand, reaching tentatively towards Chad's own. Chad didn't move, as he knew it would startle the other boy. Ryan hesitated for a while, so long that Chad began to suspect he'd only imagined it. Then Ryan took Chad's hand in his own.
He let his fingers go over the darker boy's hand, feeling every ridge, every line. He pressed lightly at Chad's finger tips, testing them against his own. Then he squeezed the hand gently, and let it stay that way.
Chad had difficulty breathing. Ryan had touched him. Ryan had touched him. That hadn't happened at all since that day- it was always Sharpay and Chad asking, touching, caressing gently. Ryan had never taken the initiative.
Chad fell asleep then, a big smile on his face.
We're getting there. Slowly but surely, we're getting there.
Chad was at the Evans' house. Ryan had been released from the hospital two days ago, and had been stationed in his family's garden since then. He could walk just fine now, although his ribs were still sore, but at least he'd stopped wagging. Chad used to wonder why he did that, until he saw that Ryan didn't like to sit. That it hurt a little. Now... Chad didn't wonder anymore. He'd thrown up again when he'd realized.
"Ryan?" He neared the pale boy, who was sitting by the swimming pool in a sun chair. Ryan didn't answer, of course, it was just a way for Chad to let him know he was there. Ryan was still jumpier than a rabbit, and mute. He'd opened his mouth twice, though- one with Sharpay, one when Chad was there. They both figured it wouldn't be long before he'd start talking.
Ryan was asleep. Chad liked to watch him sleep; that was when he looked peaceful. Except for when he had nightmares. Now, he looked like- Well, Chad didn't want to sound all sappy, but he did kinda look like an angel, what with the blond hair and pale, peaceful features.
"You okay there, buddy?" he murmured, and sat down. Ryan didn't stir. Instead, he frowned. The frowning became fear, and sighs turned into whimpers. Another nightmare.
"Hey, Ryan, you're okay," Chad murmured, gently poking Ryan to make him wake up. He was afraid of touching him further, in case Ryan would freak when he woke up. He'd already suffered a concussion because Chad was such an idiot. "Ryan. Wake up."
Ryan didn't wake. Instead, the whimpering got louder, and he started thrashing about. Big tears started trailing down his face, and he sobbed.
"Shit," Chad muttered, and shook his friend lightly. "Ryan, wake up. Please. You're having a nightmare." This wasn't working. This wasn't working at all. And Ryan was freaking in his sleep, now.
Chad decided to try something else. "Hey, hey, shh," he cooed softly, and wiped the tears away. Ryan didn't flinch, thank God. "There you go," Chad continued to coo, "You'll be fine. I'm here, 'kay? I'm not leaving."
That seemed to do the trick. Ryan stopped sobbing, little at a time, and finally, he turned around in his sleep to lean against Chad's shoulder.
"Chad." It was a sigh, more than a word, but Chad heard it anyway. His heart leaped.
"Yeah, it's me," he murmured, and kissed Ryan's forehead. Ryan smiled, his eyes closed.
"I have an idea," Sharpay announced the next day. Both Chad and Ryan looked up from the magazine they'd been sharing.
"About what?" Chad asked.
"About Ryan, of course! About the not-talking deal," Sharpay said. Ryan rolled his eyes.
"Fabulous," Chad said, voice heavy with sarcasm. Ryan smirked a little.
"I thought," she continued, ignoring the boys, "that if Ryan doesn't want to talk, he can write. I'm not playing 'charades' for the rest of my life." And she gave Ryan a notebook.
"Wow, Sharpay," Chad said in awe. "That was actually a good idea. Oh my God, have you got a concussion too?" He leaped up. "Are you all right? Fever? Nausea? Dizziness?"
Ryan snorted a laughter.
"Begone, Danforth!" Sharpay waved him off. "Now, Ryan. What do you think?"
Ryan thought for a minute, then opened his notebook. That could work.
"Excellent!" Sharpay beamed. She sat down beside her brother. "I've missed your voice."
Ryan raised an eyebrow.
"You know what I mean."
"She means the voice in her head," Chad said helpfully. "Cos, you know. With yours missing, there's only, what? Five, six of them left? It gets lonely, you know."
Ryan snickered, and Sharpay sent him a glare. It wasn't quite her usual death glare, though, and Chad knew why. Even if it was on her expense, she was still thrilled that Ryan was smiling again.
Chad was right there with her.
"Hey, buddy." Chad dropped his school books in the sun chair next to him, and Ryan took of his sunglasses. He showed him his notebook. Hi. How was school?
"Dull," Chad said truthfully. "I miss having you there."
You've got the Wildcats.
"Yeah, but it's not the same," Chad sighed and leaned back. Although sitting in separate chairs, they were still leaning against each other. Chad for comfort, and Ryan because he practiced. Practiced on not freaking out whenever someone touched him.
Miss someone 2 discuss musicals with?
Chad snorted. "Yeah, that's it."
Ryan smiled and drew a smiling sun.
Ryan showed him the finger.
"You're giving me mixed signals, you know that?" Chad laughed. Ryan blushed, smiling. Chad's laughter died down, and he looked the other boy in the eye.
"You know," Chad murmured," I'm here for you. If you want to... try something, just- just do it. Okay? I won't push, but I won't push away either." He hoped Ryan would take the invitation for what it was.
Thank u. :)
"Smiley, huh," Chad said softly, and reached up to stroke away a stray bang from Ryan's face. Ryan frowned, his face looking curious. And almost nervous.
"What is it?" Chad asked.
Ryan bit his lip and wrote. Then he showed Chad his notebook, blushing. Can I kiss you?
Chad blinked, surprised. Then he blushed as well. "Uhm... Yeah. Yeah, you can."
Don't move. Ryan leaned forward, slowly, slowly. Chad didn't move, just kept his eyes open until they were mere centimeters apart. Then he closed them.
Ryan's lips were soft, but also a little rough. They were chapped in the middle, from where he'd been chewing on his bottom lip. He tasted of spit, cocoa, sun and Ryan. This was so very much unlike their first disastrous kiss, and so much better. At least Chad thought so. He did his best to enjoy and answer the kiss, without seeming demanding or pushy. His heart hammered in his chest.
After a little while, which seemed like a small eternity, Ryan pulled away. His lips were swollen and red, and he was beaming. Chad was too, at the thought of what had happened. Ryan looked almost happy, and Chad had made him that way. It cut away a small piece of the guilt he was carrying around with him.
"Was it good for you too?" Chad joked, and grinned stupidly. Ryan swatted him on the head with his notebook, chuckling.
Feedback's awfully nice.
Current Mood: chipper
Current Music: Dancing With Tears in My Eyes- Ke$ha