Rhythm & Bruise: Gaara's StorySeries:
Main pairing: Kiba/Gaara. Other pairings from the Monoshizukanohi series make appearances.Word Count:
THIS CHAPTER: Language, angst, adult situations, mild violence, references to child abuse, horror elements, etc. Overall: Dark fiction. Bloodplay, angst, violence, abuse, gangs, D/s, bondage, impact play, other.Spoilers:
The streets of Monoshizukanohi are not kind to youth, and Gaara is no exception. After running away from an abusive home, Gaara struggles to find meaning in life through violence, drugs, and anything he can manage to survive. Join him as Gaara and his ever-present friend Jody struggle from the streets to the top of the social strata. It's rags to riches, despair to hope, and everything in between.
The parking lot of Akasuna Auto was deserted, the safety lights glowed, and Gaara felt a pang for the wreck of Kiba's vehicle he knew was parked behind the locked gate. Jody moved it there the same day the Dogs destroyed it, and Kiba called a taxi to take himself home, even though Jody offered to do the honors. That was three days ago, and Gaara had not seen hide nor hair of the Inuzuka since.
Ignoring his aches and pains both physical and otherwise, Gaara turned off the road to head home. Car lights vanished behind Gaara as Jody did likewise, and Gaara felt sick when he wanted to stop, turn around, and follow Jody. He could almost smell the air freshener Jody plugged into outlets that reminded Jody of apple pie, and Gaara stifled a flash of unrestricted panic. He wasn't acting right; the thought of running to Jody was ludicrous, childish, insane, and irresponsible. Gaara bit into his healing lip, found the dent of the hole made by Kiba's tooth, and chewed until he sucked blood.
Gaara's house was better lit than the shop, and he hit the button on the sun visor for the garage door, pulling forward until he slammed on the brakes at the sight of a Kia parked where Gaara's bikes usually sat. Distaste made Gaara's mouth bitter and anxiety thickened his throat as he eased Beast in next to what he hoped to God was a rental, and he killed the engine. After a moment, his finger hit the button to shut the door, and he sat in darkness; waiting while all the pieces clattered to the floor of Gaara's mind.
The only person who had the codes was Jody. It fell to reason that Jody gave the codes to the driver of the Kia. Gaara suspected that green-eyed fortune lay beyond the entrance to his home, but Gaara grabbed the Sig along with his jacket before starting the journey to discovery.
Unlocking the front door with shaking fingers, Gaara got inside, reset barriers and alarms, and jerked to another halt. He stared at the tiny screen telling him all was secure and listened. Not hearing so much as the air flowing from the heat vents, Gaara leaned his forehead against the wall and banged it. Hard.
Still nothing moved or stirred, and Gaara took off his shoes and hung his jacket in slow motion. He inched down the dark hallway, gun in hand with finger on the trigger, and he saw faint light coming from beneath his bedroom door. He stopped, squeezed the Sig's grip, and his heart pounded so loudly he couldn't think over pressure and volume. Every thud made his head hurt; every breath felt like glass in his lungs. Images scattered when he tried to organize his thoughts, words left, and his mouth went dry.
Gaara wanted Kiba, and the desire made him spin, start to run away, and then kick himself for cowardice. He twisted, turned the knob with the hand not full of weaponry, and he stepped into his room.
Not only was the Inuzuka there, he was sprawled in Gaara's bed: nude and asleep with one arm hanging over the edge of the mattress. The ink on his back gleamed in the low glow of the single lamp, the dip and swell of muscles rose and fell with even breathing, and dark hair slashed across cheek and neck.
The vision rendered Gaara immobile and insane, and he stood stock still, bullets unspent and issues unresolved. He felt completely unhinged: a diluted and delusional version of self. This wasn't real; it was a nightmare. And Gaara wasn't even fucking sure why
. He felt peaceful and like he wanted to huddle in the corner and die or cry or something equally undignified, and Gaara didn't understand what in the hell--
"…is wrong with me?"
"Hm?" Kiba snorted, wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, and sat up. One heavy leg sliding across the sheets caught all of Gaara's attention until a gleam around Kiba's throat pulled Gaara's eyes to a medallion about Kiba's neck. Gaara didn't remember crossing the room, grabbing the poorly-wrought thing in a fist and yanking on the chain until Kiba had to catch himself before falling off the bed.
"The fuck?" Gaara asked, quiet and somber.
"Nice t'see you, too, sweetheart," Kiba answered.
"This," Gaara whispered, tugging with each emphatic word. "What. Is. This?"
"The medal of Saint Dymphna: patron saint of the insane," Kiba answered, and Gaara felt himself studied; could practically taste Kiba's patience and anticipation. The world slid into blurry lines, and he could no longer clearly see the flat disc he'd worn for so long; couldn't hear over the sound of Leon telling him to pick a saint--
"Choose your new name."
"So you can be reborn."
-- to take as his own. Gaara felt flipped upside down; stuck on a carnival ride with no relief from the loops in sight.
"Why…?" Gaara croaked.
"Jody gave it t'me."
Gaara heard blood rush, felt something slip inside himself into a darker, harder place. He grunted, slammed the gun on the nightstand with enough force to chip wood, and brought his hands up to his mouth, biting flesh and trying to see, to understand, to get a goddamned grip
but it felt impossible.
"You think you know me," Gaara husked, heels of his hands digging into his eyes.
"Yeah," Kiba replied, getting up. Gaara took in arms, chest, hip, cock, knees, and swayed on his feet. And then Kiba was there
and holding him. Kiba manhandled Gaara to the bed and forced Gaara onto it. A strangled noise filled the air, and Kiba shushed it with a kiss, an embrace, a warm palm over a soured stomach.
"How did you get in?" Gaara asked, but Kiba didn't answer. Instead, the Inuzuka brought up the blankets and enveloped Gaara with body and comforter.
"What did Jody tell you?" Gaara asked, but Kiba merely turned out the light and, oddly, began to brush one knuckle over Gaara's face: beneath eyes and over cheeks. Gaara didn't know why
. But it felt… felt like…
"Got ya baby," whispered a familiar growl.
"Why didn't I do it?" Gaara said, frantic and trying to squirm, but gravity and Kiba wouldn't let him. "Fucking stupid.
I should have… I needed to…for you. I wanted it for… for…"
Cooing noises in his ears, lips on skin, hands everywhere: warmth, solace, safety, peace a slow breath and a long light year away.
"Right here, sweetheart."
"But--" Shattered gasps, rough swells of diaphragm, chaos and hunger and need.
"Not goin' anywhere."
A deep suck of wind, and Gaara managed to say: "I am…"
The world vanished, reality snapped, and then:
A woman with strawberry blonde hair lays in a bed. Tubes are everywhere; so many Gaara can't tell where they begin and end. He makes a game of it: guess where this ends, guess where that goes.
"I'm getting coffee," Father says. Gaara sits up in the bad plastic chair, curls in on himself.
"I'll come with you," Uncle says.
Father pauses, makes the unhappy face that means Gaara has to try harder. "The boy…"
"He'll be fine. The nurses won't let him wander off." Uncle smiles at Gaara, and his eyes are like the monsters in Gaara's closet. "You'll be good for me, won't you? Don't want to upset Daddy, do you?"
Gaara doesn't answer, and Father vanishes. Uncle goes with him, and Gaara's left with Mother who Isn't Really There Anymore. At least, that's what Father says.
But Gaara doesn't believe that. So he climbs off the chair and uses the metal rail to crawl onto the bed.
"Mommy?" Gaara whispers. A machine beeps, and Gaara watches the lines jump on the screen. He knows that means she can hear him, but it's hard to talk to her with her eyes closed. Frowning, Gaara bends to Mother's ear, carefully avoiding the BeginandEnd Tubes.
"I heard the mean nurse tell Father you're dying 'cause the way I came into the world was bad."
The beeping seems louder, and Gaara brings his hand to his mouth, gnawing on a red fist.
"Is… is that true?" Gaara waits. "Mommy?"
The beeping is louder, more urgent, and Gaara doesn't know what that means.
"I'm sorry," Gaara whispers and kisses Mother's cheek. It feels like tissue under his lips, and Gaara makes a face he hopes Mother doesn't see.
"I didn't mean to."
Beeping, an alarm, and Gaara needs to hurry before Father comes back.
Before Uncle sees him being a Bad Boy and gives Gaara his Punishment. It's worse than Father's belt. And Gaara thinks it's really unfair that his half brother and sister never get punished. They only visit, but Uncle's always there. And he never even looks at them.
Not the way he looks at Gaara.
"I love you, Mommy."
Gaara clasps Mother's hand in both of his, puts his head on her belly, and tries not to cry. Uncle likes it when Gaara cries, but not too loud.
Father hates it, though. Hates it a lot.
"Don't go, okay?"
The hand in Gaara's jerks, the alarms get really loud, and Gaara smiles as Mommy relaxes in the bed.
She's resting the Good Sleep, and Gaara wants that, too.
But then the nurses are there, pulling him away. Shaking him.
"Gaara?"Gaara yells something, his father and uncle shout.
"C'mon, sweetheart."Gaara blinks and holds up his hands. The room is full of white. And it's--
"Bright," Gaara gasped, and Kiba stroked back his hair, touched his face, kissed his open mouth. Kiba lay back down behind Gaara, and the motion made Gaara seasick.
"A'right," Kiba said, but his voice didn't sound right; too thick.
"I'm… sorry…" Gaara tried to say, but his tongue was a useless hunk of meat in his mouth.
"I can fix it, baby," Kiba said, and a warm palm covered Gaara's eyes in the pitch darkness of the room. "I swear."
"Okay," Gaara managed, the word clearer. He shook hard, Kiba held him harder, and the promise lulled Gaara; eased him away from the brink. He wanted to tell Kiba that the memories were back and that they needed to die swift deaths. He needed to explain to Kiba that gentle wouldn't make the angels stop singing. He had to warn Kiba that no matter what anyone said, Gaara was irrevocably broken.
And it wasn't his mother's death, his Uncle's abuse, his father's neglect, or the years of violence and drugs that did it. Those were the symptoms of the illness that had no cure.
Gaara was born bad.
Breathing slowed, time ticked, and Gaara couldn't remember the last time he slept. He counted all his blessings: alcohol, drugs, smokes, sex, whips, lashes, and pain. He tried to long for any one of them and found that he only wanted the result: oblivion.
Sitting up, Gaara turned and studied Kiba. The Inuzuka rested, eyes roving beneath the lids, and salty tracks lined his face. Gaara started to touch one, thinking it would wake Kiba up, and maybe Gaara could ask for--
"He'll never love you like that," said a sibilant voice. Gaara suppressed a sigh, turned his torso, and saw the bloodied, burnt corpse of his uncle. He wore a tattered black suit like he used to wear in life. His eyes ran red, his lips were gone, and his teeth were too white against the spotted black pink of gums.
"You're not real," Gaara said, standing and walking toward the door leading out to the lanai.
"No one will ever love you but me."
"Get fucked," Gaara whispered, bare feet padding over outdoor tile. The blue lights in the pool danced below the surface of the water, and the dark granite bottom looked fathomless; endless.
"You can't ask him for that
. He'll hate you, my dirty little whore."
Gaara smiled, faced the dead man, and made thumb and forefinger into a flesh pistol. He fired -- bang
-- and Uncle died by bullet instead of by flame. To this day, Gaara didn't know who started that blaze. It wasn't Jody. It wasn't Gaara. So maybe…
A blur in peripheral vision; something that looked for all the world like a tall, thin man in a sport coat and--
"Father?" Gaara said, toes hanging over the edge of the plunge pool. But there was nothing but silence, steam from the water, a hint of snowflake, and the siren song speaking of dreamless relief.
"The Good Sleep," Gaara said.
Because while Uncle was dead, Father was buried, Jody was home, Kiba was sleeping, and Gaara stood on the precipice of understanding it all -- of what he needed, what he wanted, and how to say it in words instead of with violence -- none of it mattered. He couldn't protect the people he loved, couldn't be worthy of the care they wanted to give him, couldn't survive the way a normal person should, and he couldn't make himself take the steps closer to the man who might, Gaara knew, be able to prove him entirely wrong.
…he walked into the light…Please…please…
…stroked toward the blackness…Make it stop…
And sucked sweet liquid oblivion into the chambers around his heart.~*~Author's Note
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