Log:Let's Check each Other's Math
Hector knocks lightly on Jade's door. He is in black sweats, hair carifully combed. He has a tray with toast, peserves, butter, ice water, and V-8.
Jade mumbles, "Come in." Meezer is more welcoming with loud meowing. He's at the door to greet Hector, whereas Jade is sitting up in bed, blankets pulled to his waist, and he's drinking from the water glass Hector left for him. A bedside light is on, leaving the room dim, but lit. Jade has the vague and unhappy look of someone hungover.
Hector walks quietly, setting the tray down in Jade's reach, before producing a bottle of advil from his pocket and setting it on the tray. He keeps his voice soft, so as not to jar hung over senses, "Mind if I sit?"
"I don't mind," Jade says in a raspy voice. He takes two Advil and swallows them down with water. Meezer hops up and comes over to inspect the toast, but Jade shoos him away with a wave of his hand. Meezer stays back, but he continues to eye the toast with interest.
Hector produces a pounce can from the other pocket and sits on the edge of thebed, facing Jade. He dangles a treat casualy, as if not having noticed Meezer. "It's okay if you dont want to talk about it, but I'm here if you do."
Meezer walks right up to the treat and takes it like a little gentleman. Munch munch munch. Jade smiles a little, but briefly. "I'm just... I'm trying to cope. Cash started talking the way Cash does and I just felt like fuck, we're doomed. Nothing against Cash. It's just that he can't predict how people are going to react to him, you know? Not everyone is going to want his comfort, and that's okay. We can't make this about any of us. It has to be about getting them back."
Hector scritches Meezer's head, smiling fondly at the beast. He nods, and says with a grim determination, "It has to be about getting them back. I... sent Bubba a note about Fran. I don't know if it'll help. Silver is... really messed up over this, but I have hopes she'll be back in the fight soon. We really do need as many good minds as we can put into planning as possible." He studies Jade, "You're sensible, and you see from a direction most people don't. I also... I care about you, you know. And I suspect you have...impulses right now that are not... I have them too. He really is a sun flower and entirely irreplaceable. We need to get him back and we both of us need to be here and... and okay when we do. We need to be in possition to destory every last one of them who darkened his sky. you are far better at that last than I am, I suspect." He takes a breath, "How can I help you?" Get through this. Be who you need to be in this emergancy or after. He hasn't the words, but it's in his face, a loyal intensity, a steal underneath all the easy going surfer, a lack of limits when it comes to protectng those he loves.
Jade stares off into the middle distance as he thinks. Idly, he says, "I'm not suicidal, and I'm not self-harming. I need you to go into my closet. There's a bench there. Lift the lid, and you'll see a shoebox. Bring that to me." He strokes Meezer's fur, and the cat purrs.
Hector nods and pads over to do as he says. Hector's barefoot, as he generally is indoors. He presents his brother's lover with the requested shoebox, head cocked a little.
Jade opens the box, and he takes out a ziploc bag. It contains a few syringes, a tarnished spoon, some rubber tubing, and a couple small plastic packets of a yellowish substance. "I haven't done heroin in a long time," he says. "Nothing has happened so bad I've wanted to." He's quiet a moment, then he thrusts the ziploc bag to Hector. "I need you to keep this away from me. I don't need this kind of insurance, especially right now."
Hector's expression barely flickers as he takes in the import of the box's contents. "I'll keep them safe for you, Jade. Thank you." He squeezes Jade's foot, then sets the works behind him. He gives him a crooked smile, "You're a good man, you know."
Jade shrugs and says, "I don't know, maybe. You don't have to keep it safe. I know what heroin's like, and you can't have it and a relationship. I choose Spear." He looks away from it. "Could you please get it out of my sight?" He's not entirely sure how much he trusts himself. There's a nervous edge in his voice. "I've been careful with ketamine. I only need a bump once in awhile. I only have powder and pills. I'm not shooting it. I've got some valium, for when it's really bad, to help me sleep. Aside from weed, I'm not doing anything else right now."
Hector nods, "Careful is good, not shooting or mixing is better." He carries it out of the room and away. He returns in a bit. Another gentle knock, "Still just me if you want the company."
"Come in," Jade says. By the time Hector returns, he's eaten some of the toast and shared some with Meezer. No wonder Meezer thinks human food is for him. "I know I'll do th heroin if I can get to it," he says, "and I don't want to go down that road again. It's hard to get into rehab for heroin. No one wants to take you, because they don't think you can kick it."
Hector settles back on the bed and smiles softly, "But here you are, not taking it. Underestimated." He squeezes his foot again, "If you ever... need help not doing something. I'll help, you know. I won't judge. I'll just help. You don't have to do any of this alone, not the waiting or the planning or the rest of it." He gazes into some imaginary distance, "It's not drugs with me, but I... I don't have words for it exactly. I just feel like... It's like we're on the verge of something where... It's like I don't have the limits I normally have. Like I'll do anything to get them back, and anything might take me into some dark places. It was like that with my Mother lastAutumn. Like if I... cut enough pieces of myself away, if I gave up Cash, if I just... sacridficed hard enough.... Only it didn't save her." His eyes snap back, "I don't want to do that to the people who love my. I also know I absolutely will if I think it will bring spear home safe to you. I think it might be good if you and i look after each other. Check each other's math metaphorically."
Jade nods and says, "I think you're right. I'll keep an eye on you, you keep an eye on me." He pets Meezer, who is sprawled out on his side, snoozing. "We both need to remember that self-harm isn't going to help. We might feel better for a moment, because we feel like we're doing something, but she's not going to let them go if we debase ourselves enough. That's not part of the equation."
Hector flashes him a relieved smile, "Thanks, Jade. I suspected you'd understand. That's it, exactly."
Jade smiles a little. "I've done my share of trying anything for approval. I've learned what definitely doesn't work. I don't want her approval, though. I just want her to die. I want it to hurt, but if it has to be quick, that's fine, too. As long as she's dead, you know?"
Hector smiles the sort of smile that makes people avoid a man on public transport, "I want the same. I hope it hurts so very, very much, but simply dead will do."
"She's an idiot to mess with our families," Jade says. "Whatever she's playing at, she's overreaching. Especially now that we've got grownups believing us. Just looking at it coldly, it's not going to end well for her. I understand the payoff will be great if she can pull it off, but she can't."
Hector nods, "All united, I think we may be terrifying. I think it interesting that she took people from the three families less likely to... go all in until she did that." He reaches over to help with the Meezer petting, "I think a threat to the children of all five families is the best chance of uniting them sceptical or not... I wish I knew why she'd risk it. Why go to war with the five families? What's the Cracker Jack prize if she wins?"
"I don't know specifically," Jade says, "but if I had to venture a guess, it's because our blood is tied to this place and that stone. There's power in our blood yet. Maybe she thinks she can channel it, use it somehow. Hell, taking the least mystical angle, it's a huge fuck you to Bubba. He tells her don't do this, she pulls it off, she can tell him, with her new brood, I don't take orders from you anymore."
Hector snorts, "Vampire teen rebelliion. I lean towards a more mystical value. What if it gives her power of Swidon?"
"We're fucked regardless," Jade says. "As much as I'd like to think they'd all destroy each other in a bloody civil war, a lot of innocent people would die in the crossfire. Point is, we can't afford to find out. We need to kill her, and the full moon is our chance."
Hector says, “I hate leaving things until the last minute. I wish I were clever enough to work out something to do in the mean time."”
"I don't know how else we can draw her out," Jade says. He's quiet a moment, then says, "I don't want anyone to die, but if someone gets stupid and puts them at risk, I will do whatever's necessary to get Spear to safety. If Silver can't hold her tongue and it causes things to go downhill, I will do whatever's necessary to get Spear to safety. The way she went off on Fran, it could have escalated badly."
Hector rubs the back of his neck, "Cash keeps volunteering as bait." He eyes Jade, "Are we talking raid to respue Spear if someone puts them on the attack?"
"I mean if I have to choose between saving Spear or someone who got into trouble because they couldn't use their god damned head, I'll save Spear," Jade says. "We don't need to bluster at her. We don't need to try to convince her we're badass. We just need to be badass. We just need to kill her. The less posturing the better."
Hector says, “I don't think Silver will do that again. She blames herself for them taking Spear.”
Jade shakes his head. "Nah, they took him before she confronted Fran. I think they snatched whoever was closest. He was right beside me, and I should've grabbed him. I've been going over that in my head since it happened. He was right there, and my first instinct was to freak out. If I could've only grabbed him instead..."
Hector says, “I should have grabbed him too. He's my brother and I'm strong. It happened so damned fast.”
Jade nods slowly. "That's what I've been telling myself. Even if I could've grabbed him, I wouldn't have been strong enough to hold on. I wish they'd taken me, too, because no matter what, I would've been with him. But I'm just going to try to take advantage of being on the outside to fix things."
Hector reaches for his hand, "We both do. I love that wonderful little guy. I want him back home with us."
Jade closes his eyes, and he draws a shuddery breath. He doesn't cry, though. He's cried out. "I love him," he says. "He's sunshine and rainbows, and he makes he happy, and we can talk about anything. We had a date in the cemetery, and I was able to talk about being an addict, and there was no judgment. We could just talk about it."
Hector says, “He was good to me when I first came here and everything else was fucking terrible. I love him so damned much, Jade." He takes a breath, "May i hug you or would that be weird?"”
Jade leans in and hugs Hector tightly. "We're going to get him back," he says. "We have to. I don't want to live in a world where we don't get him back."
Hector hugs him back feircely, "We have to. I will not accept anything else."
Jade keeps hugging Hector, and he's frail, clinging to the stronger youth. "Promise me," he whispers, "no matter what happens to me, you'll keep fighting for him. I don't intend to die, but if it happens, don't let him give up. Tell him I'll meet him in the next life."
Hector says, “Of course I promise. Promise me the same, Jade Marchant, because he is too damned importnt not to have people waiting for him who love him when he returns."”
"If you fall, I'll pick up and carry on where you left off," Jade says. "There's time to mourn after it's all said and done. Man, what a fucking way to grow up. Goodbye childhood, huh."
Hector says, “I'll do the same. Jesus, I'm glad we're friends."”