wasn't prepared for this
lady_deathangel ~*~ 1,944 words ~*~ PG-13 ~*~ mentions of Bren/Audrey, past Ryan/Jac, vaguely implied Bren/Ryan
||Disclaimer: This is in no way real. Don't read if you googled yourself and this came up on the first page, you won't like it.
Whoo, so remember how I started writing this awesome 'verse where Brendon's a girl and shenanigans ensue? Well, this is an extension of that 'verse for the lovely pressdbtwnpages who I love muchly. I've been wanting to write more about Bren for ages and her prompt finally got me writing, so thanks sweetie! This takes place during all the wrong reasons - post Ryan and Jac's breakup, before Bren and Audrey's. Title from the Eisley song of the same name. ||
Right Where It Belongs
Ryan’s bent over his pedals again, face screwed up in an expression of sheer frustration. His fingers are gripping the neck of his guitar a little too hard and Bren can’t stop staring at the whiteness of his knuckles. He’s been tense for a while, short-tempered and a little hard to be around. Bren’s pretty sure it’s a combination of new tour nerves and residual anger over how things ended with Jac; Ryan keeps starting fights over possible covers and making thinly veiled comments about his ex so it’s not hard to figure out.
Bren just wishes she could help, but Ryan’s keeping her at arm’s length and she’s got her own problems to deal with, her own set of nerves and her own girlfriend.
Ryan sighs loud enough for Bren to hear from a few feet away, and she’s about to go over and see if she can help when a tech beats her to it. He doesn’t look like much, with his short hair and smallish frame. He doesn’t have any visible tattoos or piercings and he’s wearing flip-flops. Bren figures he’s probably with William and his band since a guy like this probably wouldn’t be caught dead doing tech work for anyone any more hardcore than that.
He smiles at Ryan with a wide-open, sweet face, and Ryan blinks back and offers a small smile of his own. Bren narrows her eyes and watches as the tech leans down over Ryan’s pedals, works some kind of magic, and fixes the problem. The tension immediately leaks out of Ryan’s thin body, his fingers relaxing a little, his forehead smoothing out.
The tech says something, a little quiet, and Ryan answers back. Bren wishes she could hear what they have to say, but they’re talking in near-whispers, like they’re sharing secrets or something. The tech just keeps grinning up at Ryan through his lashes, even when he gets to his feet, and Ryan’s smiling back. Actual smiles, even, not the thin-lipped shit he’s been gracing Bren with for the last couple weeks.
Bren knows she’s being unfair because it’s not like Ryan’s only been a jerk to her or Spencer or Brent for the last few weeks. He’s just been more noticeably prickly, harder to get to relax, way less fun to be around. And here’s some stranger doing something that takes a huge amount of effort from everyone but Spencer. Ryan’s still smiling, talking a little more animatedly. Bren can just pick up the even tone of his voice, can hear the tech’s answers in soft rises and falls.
She tears her eyes away and frowns to herself before stalking off stage to find Brent and Spencer for soundcheck.
Bren isn’t one for irrationally hating anyone and she certainly doesn’t hate the guitar tech (whose name, apparently, is Jon). She’s just a little jealous, is all. Ryan talks about him in glowing tones, keeps telling the story of how “Jon Walker saved my life, can we keep him?”, and for the next two days keeps finding him backstage so they can talk about music or magazines or whatever it is Jon is so very knowledgeable about.
“I don’t like him,” Bren tells Spencer one afternoon.
She’s tuning her guitar, because she can do those things without the amazing tech’s help, and Spencer’s staring at her like she’s grown another head.
Bren shrugs and Spencer crouches down into her line of sight. She keeps her eyes determinedly on the frets of the guitar until Spencer pokes her in the nose and coaxes her gaze upward.
“What?” she asks, sounding a little petulant.
Spencer just raises his eyebrows in that way he has, and Bren feels herself flush a little self-consciously.
“He’s just so. I mean. I don’t see the appeal, that’s all,” she says, frowning.
“Maybe you should try talking to him,” Spencer says. “He’s William’s favorite guy ever and he’s Tom’s best friend and Ryan thinks he’s cool.”
Bren sighs and taps her fingers against the body of her guitar.
“He thinks you’re cute,” Spencer adds, his voice lilting in a little bit of a tease.
“Flattery will get him nowhere,” Bren announces haughtily, but Spencer just leans forward to bump their foreheads together.
“He’s really nice, Bren. And he’s not trying to steal Ryan, okay?”
Bren sputters but Spencer just smiles knowingly, straightens up, and walks away.
Bren is a little drunk. Not much. Or at least, everyone else on The Academy’s bus has her beat by a lot. She’s just buzzed, her words a little thick in her mouth, her laughs tingling pleasantly in her tummy. She feels warm and weightless and happy and she likes the feeling a lot. She should do this more often, drinking with the guys.
“You’re always welcome here,” Tom says, and Bren realizes a few seconds too late that she was talking out loud.
“Good,” she says, smiling broadly and tilting the neck of her beer bottle in Tom’s direction. “That’s good.”
“What’s good?” someone asks from just outside of Bren’s line of sight.
She swivels her head around and sees Jon standing above her and Tom, bottle of whiskey in hand, smile in place. She blinks and tries to remember why this isn’t a good thing, but she can’t so she just shrugs and smiles back.
“I don’t know,” she says, giggling a little.
“You’re cute when you’re drunk,” Jon says, sitting next to her and she makes a face.
“I’m not drunk,” she says, and Tom nods.
“True. You’re not drunk until you let Andy talk you out of your clothes.”
Bren laughs loudly and claps a hand over her mouth to muffle the sound. Tom grins at her and she swallows the rest of her laughter.
“I need another beer,” Tom says, standing up.
He leaves and Bren can’t remember if she wants to be alone with Jon or not, but she is now and he’s just watching her with careful eyes. She twists her torso so she’s facing him on the small lounge sofa.
“So,” she says, and then forgets what she wanted to say.
“So,” Jon says back.
Bren, she’s really not that drunk so she doesn’t get why she can’t figure out how to talk right now, why her brain’s turned to Swiss cheese. She bites her lip.
“I don’t like you,” she blurts out, and Jon just blinks. “I mean,” she goes on, “I don’t not like you. I barely know you, you know? But Ryan really likes you. I think I’m jealous.”
It takes a moment for the words to catch up to her, and as soon as they do Bren wants to run away and hide. But Jon just looks thoughtful.
“Okay,” he says slowly.
Bren stares at him. “Okay?” she repeats, and he nods, turning to face her more fully.
“I think we should get to know each other. You can forget about Ryan for a second, can’t you?”
Bren shakes her head slowly. “I don’t think so,” she admits, and Jon smiles. It’s small, but it’s honest and warm.
For a moment Bren wants to be stubborn and insist that she can’t and she doesn’t want to know Jon, doesn’t want to see how awesome and amazing he is. But she nods anyway and thrust her hand out in front of her.
“I’m Brendoline Urie, I hate my first name, and I sing in a band,” she says. “I’m also a little drunk,” she adds.
Jon grins and takes her hand in his, giving it a firm shake.
“I’m Jonathan Walker, I have a cat named Dylan, I tech for a band, and I totally didn’t notice.”
Bren giggles for no real reason and it’s a few beats before Jon lets go of her hand. She blushes a little when she takes it back and Jon taps his fingers against her knee. The touch resonates in her bones even through the denim of her jeans. She’s beginning to wonder if Jon’s magic or something, the way he makes Ryan smile and takes away Spencer’s suspicions and has her tingling more sharply than the vodka she drank earlier.
“That’s a good start,” he says, and Bren nods in agreement.
“Yeah, yeah you’re not so bad,” she says with a sloppy wink.
“I hear you like Disney,” Jon says, and Bren looks up from her Gameboy.
“Um,” she says, looking around for whoever might have spilled her secret.
She decides it was probably Spencer because of the way he won’t look up from the book he’s reading a few feet away.
“Do you have any on your iPod?” Jon continues, and Bren finally looks at him.
His eyes are the same warm color as always, his mouth relaxed and barely smiling. He’s not teasing. He’s serious, and from the way he’s tapping his hand against his thigh, Bren thinks he might be a little nervous. She doesn’t see why; they haven’t talked since the other night, but she’s pretty sure they bonded over Coronas with limes.
“Yeah,” she says slowly, scooting over to make room for Jon next to her.
She grabs her iPod from her hoodie pocket and starts scrolling through her music for the right folder. Jon leans in close, pausing before Bren angles her body toward him so he can lean in a bit more. He’s warm, a nice solid weight against her side. He smells nice, a little girly but it somehow fits. Bren frowns to herself and tries to ignore him long enough to pull up all of her Disney albums.
“I don’t have much,” she says but Jon doesn’t hear. He’s too busy making an excited sound, snatching the iPod out of her hands and selecting a song.
Bren raises her eyebrows when he carefully places the earbud in her ear and takes the other for himself. There’s a tiny moment of silence and then a familiar song starts up.
“This is my favorite!” Jon says when she looks over at him, wide-eyed.
In their connected ears the familiar strains of Aladdin’s soundtrack have started up and Bren can’t help the fact that she’s already bouncing in her seat.
“No shit! Mine, too!”
It’s hard to be self-conscious with Disney playing and Bren forgets where she is and who she’s with in favor of singing along and it takes her a few seconds to realize she’s not alone. Jon’s singing with her, voice a little more hesitant than hers until he catches her eye. And then he makes a ridiculous face and sings a little louder, exaggerating the words. Bren laughs and matches him word for word, wild gesture for wild gesture.
It isn’t until they’ve gone through the entire album (and “A Whole New World” twice), that Bren realizes she’s practically sitting in Jon’s lap. Jon doesn’t try and push her away, though. He just smiles, eyes crinkled at the corners, and says, “so, you’ve got the most awesome Disney soundtrack ever, but do you have any Beatles on here?”
Bren rolls her eyes. “Do I!” she exclaims, taking her iPod back and settling a little more loosely against Jon’s side.
He lets her nestle close without batting an eye or copping a playful feel and then he sings “Here Comes The Sun” in her ear when she picks the song out first. Bren doesn’t really get it yet, why Ryan loves Jon so much. But she’s maybe a little in love with him herself and it’s surprising but she smiles to herself and lets him pick the next song and thinks it makes a weird sort of sense.
- Current Mood: creative
- Current Music:Ender Will Save Us All - Dashboard Confessional