Summary: When it was just Pete and Mikey, Pete treated Mikey like he invented his air. But when anyone else walked into the room Mikey is unimportant. Invisible, even. In spite, one night he wished on 11:11 that he would become just that.
When he woke up in the morning, his wish had come true.
Author's note: The first chapter of my latest work. This story was written for the Michael James Way contest on Mibba. My prompt was "I couldn't hear his voice over the noise of the band on stage."
Mikey had always, always had an obsession with the concept of just disappearing into thin air.
It started when he was ten and some kid said to him as Mikey wiped the blood off his lower lip, “You’re nothing, Way. No one would even bother to look for you if you disappeared.” He thought to himself that it would be awesome to be invisible and able to beat the shit out of everyone who had ever hurt him, and they wouldn’t be able to stop him. Finally he’d get revenge.
His interest only grew when he was fifteen and his parents were fighting all the fucking time. He and Gerard would get home and they’d lock themselves in their respective rooms. Mikey would sit on the floor by the window with a comic book propped up on his folded legs and wait to hear the first car arrive--Mom’s, and then the second--Dad’s. On the worst nights, when the fighting was so bad that not even Iron Maiden could cover the sound of their yells, he’d sit with a notebook and write one sentence over and over again until it didn’t even make sense to him anymore and his wrist was throbbing.
‘I want to be invisible.’
And then, then he read the Harry Potter books in the back of the My Chem van. Wedged between the instruments and boxes of merch he developed an obsession with the invisibility cloak and he was done for. Harry Potter was one lucky motherfucker.
“I think I want to get ‘invisibility cloak’ tattooed somewhere,” he told Gerard one day after sound check. “What do you think?”
Gerard scowled for a moment as he turned the idea over in his head and then laughed. “You’re weird, Mikes.”
Mikey didn’t think he was weird. Well okay, yeah, he was. But this… this wasn’t weird. This was important to him.
He didn’t get the tattoo, though. He didn’t really think about it much after that, either. The band was finally starting to really take off and he was way too busy playing shows and sleeping to worry about getting inked.
That was until Pete came along.
Pete was Mikey’s type, for sure. Dark and handsome, kind of short and muscular--well, more muscular than Mikey, which wasn’t a big feat. But Pete--he could talk for both of them, which although Mikey normally found annoying, something about Pete answering for him was endearing.
He had a knack, though, for making Mikey feel like complete and utter shit.
Everything had gone exceedingly well with their friendship until one day as they sat between the buses smoking cigarettes Mikey said “So I kind of like you.” He’d stood in the tiny bus bathroom practicing it over and over to his own reflection until Frank had yelled “I know I’m quite likeable but would you please shut the fuck up, I’m trying to sleep.”
Pete looked up from the cement and said earnestly, “I like you too.”
Mikey was in the middle of recovering from the shock and trying to think of something romantic to say when Patrick emerged from the bus and said “Hey man, you ready?” Pete stood up and walked briskly by Mikey. “See y’later, Mikey,” Patrick said and Pete mumbled something similar before they both walked off.
Mikey was confused. Had Pete not understood what he meant? No. No, he hadn’t misinterpreted what he’d said. Then maybe he’d just said it in return so it wouldn’t be awkward between the two of them? Pete could be a douche but he valued friendship--maybe he didn’t want to jeopardize what they had.
But something… something told Mikey that it wasn’t either of those theories. Pete had understood and he had meant it.
Maybe Pete was just the kind of guy who just wanted random hook-ups. Mikey wasn’t stupid, he’d heard about Pete before, he knew what the guy was like. Maybe that was how it worked with Pete. In front of anyone else, you didn’t even know one another but behind close doors was another story.
But random hook-ups, a ‘fuck buddy’… that wasn’t what Mikey had been asking Pete for. He could get that from anyone. He wanted Pete for more than that, he really liked him.
He sighed to himself and stood, wiped the dirt from the back of his jeans and stubbed out his cigarette.
That night after both of their shows were through Mikey waited for Pete to meet up with him between the two buses like he had been doing all summer. Except Petee didn’t show, and after twenty minutes of sweating in the July night heat he retreated back to his own bus.
“Fuck. Just, fuck,” he whispered to himself as he lay in his bunk, covering his eyes with the backs of his hands. “Fuck.”
Things got increasingly worse as the week went on. After three days of Pete dodging around not only Mikey but the rest of My Chem, Gerard finally questioned him on the matter.
“Did something happen between you guys?”
Mikey pushed a piece of sweaty hair out of his face and sighed. “I don’t know. I thought things were fine and then all to a sudden it's just... they're not."
“Did you finally tell him you like him?”
“What?” He hadn’t told anyone besides Pete--how did Gerard know?
“Oh come on Mikey. Don’t write me off like that. I’m your brother, I know things, okay?”
Mikey sighed. “Yeah, okay, fine. Yeah. I told him.” He felt his throat go tight and dry all of a sudden like he was going to cry and tried to turn away, but Gerard caught him in his arms and pulled him into a tight hug.
He whispered in his ear as he let Mikey sob, “Don’t worry, Mikey. Our band could kick his band’s asses. Frank can chase down Patrick in a second and Ray can wrestle Andy with his hair.”
Mikey had to laugh at his brother as he continued to cry.
By the fifth day of Pete completely ignoring him, Mikey was going crazy. Everyone took turns listening to Mikey blab on and on.
“But I don’t want to walk up to him and be all ‘hey dude, stop ignoring me, I think you’re hot and I want us to fuck. But I don’t want it to be just that. I want a relationship with you. Like going steady. Except not cause that makes it sound like we’re living in the fifties.’ I think he could sue me for sexual harassment for that. Do you think Pete would sue me? Oh god. And then I’d have to tell my mom that I had sexually assaulted someone. My mom--Frank. The woman who gave birth to me.”
Frank laughed as he took another swig of his root beer. “Do you really think Pete would sue you? The minute they called him into court your lawyer would be able to pull out all this shit against him and you’d be fine. Who knows. The court might reward you with a medal and a key to the city for having caught such a criminal.”
Mikey groaned and buried his face in his hands. “I don’t know. All I know is that this fucking sucks. I tried to talk to him today after the show and he just nodded and then said really loudly to Patrick that they had to have a rematch in some contest ASAP and they both wandered off. I. Can’t. Deal.”
“God, dude. You’re acting like a twelve year old girl. Next you’ll be sending him ‘are you angry with me? Check yes or no’ letters.”
“Kill me. Kill me now.” He rubbed furiously at his temples.
Frank pat Mikey on the back supportively. “Hey, man. It’ll be alright.”
“He makes me feel invisible.”
Frank looked down from Mikey’s face to his watch and smiled. “Well, if you’re going to be a twelve year old girl you might as well do it right. It’s 11:11. Make a wish.”
“I wish that I was as invisible as he makes me feel.”