DISCLAIMER: Gah, you're so obnoxious. Fine -- they're yours. Pansy bastards.
NOTES: Inspired by two unlikely sources: The quote "In my dreams, I'm jealous all the time," from Moby's song, "Porcelain"-- and the maddened toss-outs of Poi. And of course, there's always Lise.
DATE: September, 2000.

Not Mine
by Alestar

"Well ...... maybe a little cock, but it's not mine, I swear!!"
~ White

There are ... things that you don't do for the right reasons.

You do them because you like the look of them, when you step back and look at your life. For aesthetics, I guess. Or irony, maybe, I don't know, I've never been really clean on my irony. In any case, you do them-- not to feel worse, and definitely not to feel better, but just to feel all wrapped up in a picture of something.

A picture of what, is the question.

Anyway -- I'm wearing one of Remy's old shirts. He left it in my room one night when he accidentally fell asleep and didn't wake up until morning, and had to rush to his room before anyone saw him. It's a little bit -- tight, compared to what I usually wear. And it's red, which isn't really my color. But that's not the point. The point is that it's Remy's shirt, and I'm wearing it because I want to see if the man at the other side of the pub recognizes it.

He knows I'm watching him, probably. I've been trying the corner-of-my-eye thing, but subtlety was never my strong suit. I watch him, and I figure that when he looks up I'll keep watching, and then there will be one of those things. But, well. He looks up and I hurl my gaze down at the bartop.

Because I recognize wrong reasons when I see them.

It's funny, the only thing keeping me from leaving is the persistant thought that I should. I should go home. I should take the ferry back to Muir and see what Hank's up to. I should take Rahne out to some light-hearted, tame movie playing at the local theatre. Buy some pastries. Y'know. There are lots of very Bobby things I could and should do with my evening instead of sitting here with half a plan to insinuate myself into something tangled and appropriate.

But I don't. And sometimes that's the way it is.


I look up the bartender.


He pushes a glass in front of me, filled with something alot stronger than what I'm drinking now, and nods over at the man in back booth.

"Compliments 'a that man there -- says if ye've got a mind t'do somethin' then feckin' do it, or stop starin'. Is what 'e says."

I take the drink and look over at the man who is regarding me cooly. I roll my shoulders, trying to loosen up-- the tight, red material of the shirt drawing close over my back-- and throw back the drink. My eyes sting with the burn of it, but I stand, take a moment to think "this is me", and walk over to his table.

"Hey," I say firmly, standing over him. "Thanks for the drink."

He nods and gestures across from him. I slide into the booth. I breath. I'm not going to offer my name to him -- but in my head I see the introduction.

Bobby Drake, meet Pete Wisdom.

Pete Wisdom, meet Bobby Drake.

A picture of what.

And with that thought, I've suddenly forgotten why I'm here. Why of all places and all people -- why I'm sitting here in a smoke-filled pub trying to pick up my ex's three-month stand. Four month. He doesn't say anything, and I don't either, and truth to tell, I feel a very Bobby panic attack coming on. I think, jesus christ, I should just go ho--

"Nice shirt."

My mouth clicks shut and I look at him. Searching his face for any signs of humor or "aha", I find none. What I do see is him sloped back in the booth, a cigarette dangling from one hand, mouth closed, eyes guarded, head tilted casually.

I can also see Remy -- running into Pete in a pub like this for the first time. Him seeing Pete in a shroud of smoke and a beaten black suit, with just that expression on his face. Him letting a challenging grin fall over him and moving into this man-- four months of bending down and exhaling breathily against Pete's ... wary ... upturned ... face.

I can see Remy loving it.

"Thanks." My mouth curves into a slow smile and I lean forward. "You wanna get out of here?"

Pete's mouth pulls into a smirk and he nods. He throws some coins on the table and we stand and walk out together.

We wind through the London streets towards some reckoning place or another, and the wet stone of it is so unlike anything-- I am-- that I fall into it, into the picture of it. The paint smears, and I can see me in a small red shirt and dark slacks sludging along a step behind a man in a long, black coat through the wet and cold towards the wet and hot.

We finally reach a place, an apartment, and we walk up the stairs in silence, and into the dark. He doesn't turn the lights on, we go straight into the bedroom.

There's one window, and light from streetlamps and signs and headlights bleed through, illuminating a bed strewn with clothes and cigarette ashes, and dingy walls. I think, oh yeah, Remy would've loved this.

Must have loved this.

Pete throws his jacket onto the bed, begins to unbutton his shirt. I shake my head clear -- take a deep breath, move my hand to the fastener on my slacks. Whisper:

"This is me."

Pete's shirt hits the floor, and for the first time his face falls into a grin.

"Yah. I see that."

The milky blue light through the window pushes into the room, and it's there again, the picture -- of me moving across the room to this guy that I don't know. Or rather, that I only know from the dossier files at the mansion and my own imaginings as to what he must've looked like when Remy said that or did this. Which means that I know nothing about, say, his hand cupping my ass briefly before pushing the slacks down and off -- me kicking them off to some corner of the room. Nothing about the push of his pale chest against mine as he pulls me toward the bed. Nothing about my tongue in his mouth.

Bet even Remy doesn't know about that last one.

I breathe a question heavy onto Pete's bottom lip -- he murmurs an assent and pulls a few packages out from underneath a pillow somewhere. He rolls the condom on me -- and I shove down on his shoulder as my hips buck uncontrollably, his mouth on my throat.

There are ... things that are really only ever done for one reason.

Stuff happens in life, and we have a say in about twenty-five percent of it. Some of it feels good, some of it doesn't, and most of it is pretty -- but all of it makes a picture. We don't have to do anything special to paint a story, because it's already there no matter what we do.

This occured to me when this stranger who'd loved Remy reached up and brushed a wet piece of hair out of my face-- but by then, the heel of his foot was digging into that place just below my shoulder blade, driving my hips into him, and I figured it didn't really very much matter.

"Oh. Pete. Fuck."

Hey, Bobby. Picture this.

Morning light means I stayed, which is suprising. I guess I'm just not the skipping out kind, no matter how Remy I think I'm being.

A cough from the other room means he stayed, too, which suprises me more.

I slip off of the bed, grin at the smell of must and sweat and sex hanging in the room. I find my clothes scattered across the room -- I slip on the slacks and the shoes, wind the red shirt around my hand. Step out into the other room.

Pete's sitting in a fold-out chair near a window. He doesn't look up, but flicks a cigarette and says, "Drake. Breakfast."

I walk across the room to the fold-out table, where sits a small bag of donuts -- and I then turn sharply back to him. "Oh," I say. "So, you..." I gesture vaguely at him and then at me. "Okay."

He unfolds the paper and turns the page. "Yah."

I past him out the window, then, and it all seems so ridiculous. I laugh a little and fish a donut out of the bag. "I think I hyperextended a groin muscle."

"Yeh don't wanna hear what I think I hyperextended." Finishing with the paper, he throws it aside onto the floor. He looks up at me with an expression that I don't know but that I'm sure Remy -- after four months -- would've been able to translate effortlessly. "You want a fag?"

"Um. What?"

"A cigarette. You want a cigarette?"

"Oh -- no, thanks, I don't smoke." At that, he grins and shakes his head, looking down -- and I get the sudden impression that I'm not the only one painting pictures.

"Look, Pete--" He cocks an eyebrow at me and I shrug. "--Wisdom. Look. I don't want you to think this is, like. A psychotic thing. Like I'm stalking you or any of Remy's. Y'know."

"Yeah." He pulls a cigarette from his shirt pocket and cups his palm to light it. "I know."

Bobby Drake, meet Pete Wisdom.

Pete Wisdom, meet Bobby Drake.

A picture of what? Well.

Morning London light comes in the dirty window, scattering on a bare floor. We'd both loved and fucked Remy LeBeau, and we'd both hyperextended sensitive body parts. He sits, smoking, looking out at the street, and I stand eating a donut.

"Hey, I'm gonna leave this shirt here, if it's okay with you. It's not, y'know. Really my thing."

He nods and gestures for me to just toss it in the corner. Then looks up at me. "Yeh'll freeze goin' out like that. You want to borrow a shirt?"

I dip my head to hide my grin. "Yeah. Yeah, that'd be -- really good. Thanks."

He points me to a pile of clothes, and I dig out a white button up shirt -- slip it on, and it's actually a pretty good fit. A little wrinkly. I figure I'll wear it at home and see if Remy recognizes it.

"Okay, well." I smile. "Thanks for the donut."

He nods his head, and the corner of his mouth tilts. "Thanks for the shag."

Laughing, I walk out of the apartment, and as I turn to shut the door, I see him light another fag against the backdrop of pavement and the reserved London morning sun.

It's a good picture. Even if it's not mine.


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