No One I'd Rather Waste My Time WithRecipient: chiromancyPairing:
R (language, sex)Word count:
4557Request: Frank/Bob. Frank is fearless and an idiot, and sometimes it drives Bob crazy, and sometimes it turns him on to a ridiculous degree.Notes:
Written for the mcr4u
fic exchange. Set vaguely in early 2003. First time writing this pairing, so I hope you enjoy it.
Five days into the European tour, Bob's pretty much decided that My Chemical Romance doesn't need a sound guy as much as they need a minder. Which he sort of knew already, given that he met them on tour with The Used, but he'd had the idea that they might be easier to keep track of on their own. By the third time he has to wade into a German nightclub to help Brian find Frank, Gerard, and Mikey, he's starting to rethink that.
They round up both Ways easily enough--Gerard's getting drunk in a shadowy booth and Mikey's well on the way to having a threesome with a couple right on the dancefloor, but neither of them put up too much of a fuss at being tugged away. Frank's harder to find, until Bob hears shouting and turns in the direction it's coming from just in time to see the first punch being thrown.
"Oh, for the love of--" Brian begins, exasperated, and Bob hands Mikey off to him, leaning over to talk over the club's noise.
"I've got it. You get these two back to the van."
As far as Bob can tell, the fight starts off between Frank and one other guy, but while Bob's making his way over there, the other guy's friends jump in to back him up--two of them, one at least twice Frank's size, not that that's hard. Frank takes a hit to the jaw and rocks back on his heels a little, then lowers his head and barrels straight toward his attacker, catching him in the stomach with a shoulder.
One of the other guys catches Frank by the arm and hauls him away from his friend, cocking his fist back for a punch, and that's when Bob gets there, catching the guy's fist in one hand and shoving hard. He makes a grab for Frank, hoping to get him out of here before the situation escalates even further, but Frank twists away and jumps on the big guy's back. He's a scrappy little motherfucker, Bob will give him that much.
The guy whose punch got intercepted takes a swing at Bob, now, and he dodges back just in time. Something catches his eye, and he turns his head--there's a big bald guy with tattoos up and down both arms, the sort with "bouncer" written all over him, heading their way.
Bob rushes over to where Frank's still hanging tenaciously off the big guy's back, grabbing him around the middle and hauling him off. Frank lets out a stream of profanity and kicks him in the kneecap--possibly on accident, given how much he's flailing around--and Bob squeezes him hard, growling "Calm the fuck down, Iero, it's me!"
"Fucking put me down
, Bryar!" Frank snarls at him, and Bob sets him on his feet but doesn't let go, keeping one hand locked around Frank's bicep and the other fisted in the sweat-damp material of his t-shirt.
The bouncer's reached them by then, collaring two of the other guys and yelling something in German. He looks over at Bob and Frank, and Bob lets go of Frank's t-shirt to raise one hand in a pacifying gesture, then points towards the door.
"It's cool, it's cool, we're going!" he shouts, and the bouncer seems to get the gist of it, jerking his head towards the door and then giving a satisfied nod.
Bob keeps hold of Frank's arm as he hustles him towards the door, only letting him jerk away once they get outside.
"What the fuck was that, Frankie?" Bob asks, his voice sounding weirdly quiet in his own ears after the noise of the club.
Frank kicks a nearby trash can, then digs in the pocket of his jeans for his cigarettes, scowling. "The other guy started it."
"I don't care if he did, you need to stop pulling shit like that!" Bob returns.
Frank's shoulders are hunched, his expression mutinous. "Whatever you say, Mom
," he mutters around the cigarette clamped in his mouth, and then flicks his lighter open.
Bob catches hold of Frank's wrist before he can bring the lighter to his mouth, tilting his head down to look Frank in the eye. "I'm serious, Iero. You're not playing basements in Jersey anymore, you're on a European tour your manager's paying for most of. Least you could do is not
end up making your manager come bail you out of jail in fucking Germany."
Frank looks back at him stubbornly for a moment, then sighs, some of the tension dropping out of his shoulders. "Fine," he mumbles, and Bob lets go of his wrist, then touches him lightly on the shoulder.
"Come on, let's just get back to the van," he says, and they walk side-by-side in silence for a little while before Bob says, "So what happened, anyway?"
Frank shrugs. "I bumped into this girl on the dance floor. Almost knocked her over, and my parents didn't raise me to do shit like that and not apologize, okay? So I'm trying to apologize, but I can't remember what 'sorry' is in German, so I tried to sort of brush her off, y'know, show her what I meant? And the next thing I know, this guy's in my face accusing me in bad English of trying to grope his girlfriend. I tell him to back off, I'm
ready to just walk away, and he fucking shoves me, so, I mean, what the hell?"
Bob sighs. "Okay, so he was a bastard. Keep walking away next time, huh?"
Frank makes a noncommittal noise, but then grins and leans over to bump Bob with his shoulder. "Next time we go out, you should just come along. Then you could keep an eye on me."
Bob snorts. "Amazingly enough, Frankie, I have things to do besides babysit you."
Frank giggles at that and moves closer, grabbing hold of Bob's arm and leaning his head against Bob's shoulder. "If you were my babysitter I'd have to pay you. You just love being around me, Bob, don't deny your true feelings."
"Yeah, that's it," Bob grunts, rolling his eyes, but lets Frank hang off of him the rest of the way back to the van.
On their last night in Germany, Frank stage-dives and the crowd lets him drop. One second he's up on stage thrashing around and screaming into his mic while Gerard sings the chorus to "Honey...", and the next his guitar's lying on stage and he's disappearing into a flailing mass of limbs.
Venue security takes their sweet time restoring order and hauling him out, and Bob can see Brian standing sidestage, arms folded across his chest, brow furrowed. After another second, Bob leaves his place at the sound booth and hurries over to stand next to him.
Brian glances over at him. "I swear to God, I am going to kill that little bastard."
"Kill him after the set's over," Bob replies.
Frank finally surfaces, scrambling back up onto the stage and throwing metal hands up at the crowd before bending down to scoop up his guitar. Gerard shakes his head, grinning, and thanks the crowd for returning their rhythm guitarist intact. He gives Frank a playful shove as he walks past, and Frank spins around and blows him a kiss before retreating back to his spot, laughing.
In Spain, Bob wakes up from a dream about having sex with Frank and spends a full minute blinking dumbly up at the ceiling, trying to remember where he is and what he's doing here and why the fuck is he having sex dreams about Frank Iero?
Where he is is the easiest question to answer--he's on the floor of a tiny Spanish hotel room, with Gerard, Ray, and Frank crammed into one bed and Mikey, Matt, and Brian in the other.
What he's doing here is a little more complicated--or maybe not that complicated at all, just hard to put into words. All Bob knows is that after being on one tour with this band Stateside, when Brian had said "We probably won't be able to pay you much" ('much' turned out to mean 'at all'), Bob had barely hesitated before answering "Not a problem".
As for the dream...
Bob looks over at Frank. He's squeezed onto the edge of the bed, curled on his side and drooling on his pillow, and his stupid orange faux-hawk is mashed flat in the front and sticking out crookedly in the back.
He looks like an idiot, and he's still kind of stupidly hot in spite of it. This isn't the first time Bob's looked at Frank and thought that, but he's always thought of it as an objective observation, the same way he's observed that Toro can shred like nobody's business and Gerard can sketch something in a few minutes that's better than what a lot of people could draw in an hour. Bob's never given all that much thought to Frank's hotness, because a lot of the time he thinks about Frank like he would a kid brother, and sometimes he thinks of Frank as an annoying little shit who needs someone to sit on him so he can't get into trouble, and anyway, he's seen Frank flirt with guys but isn't sure how much weight he should give to casual flirting.
Only apparently, his subconscious has different ideas. Bob looks back at Frank, at his open mouth and his bare shoulders and the outline of his legs where they're tangled in the sheets. In the dream, Bob had been straddling him, pinning his wrists to the pillow and holding himself just out of range while Frank strained upwards for a kiss.
Bob realizes he's flushed and sweaty and half-hard, and looks away from Frank, swallowing hard and thinking about Otter in his underwear. He feels like a fucking teenager with no self-control, but in his defense, it's been a while--the way they've all been piled on top of each other this whole tour, opportunities to jerk off have been few and far between. It's tempting to take advantage of the fact that everyone's asleep now and slip into the bathroom for a minute, except that he already feels like enough of a creep. He rolls onto his side, facing away from Frank, and does his best to just put the dream out of his mind.
The next day, Bob does his best to act normally around Frank, and thinks he succeeds pretty well. At first, it's not that tough--Frank's fairly subdued, by his usual standards, and Bob doesn't have to restrain him or pick him up for any reason and only sees him naked for about thirty seconds in the morning.
Bob's with Frank and Gerard, heading outside to smoke after soundcheck, when Frank latches onto him from behind and tries to climb onto his back. Bob's gotten kind of resigned to Frank doing this sort of thing by now, so he lets out an annoyed grunt, but stops and reaches down to grab Frank's legs and hitch him into a better position.
It's something that's happened dozens of times since Jepha mentioned that Bob gives good piggyback rides, so there's nothing new about Frank pressed against Bob's back or Frank's legs wrapped around his waist. All the same, Bob's suddenly incredibly aware of how close they are, of the fact that his hands are wrapped around Frank's thighs
, which is the sort of thing that's taken on sudden new implications.
"Uh," Bob says, loosening his hold on Frank's legs. "Mind actually walking for once? My back's been feeling kind of funny today."
"Shit, of course," Frank says, and slides back down instantly. "You okay?"
"Just slept on it wrong, I think," Bob says.
"Aw, dude, that sucks," Gerard says, looking over at Bob with faint concern. "Next time we get a hotel, you should get to be in a bed."
"I can deal." Bob shrugs, and then grabs Frank in a headlock, giving him a noogie before he can squirm away. "Gotta make sure you rock stars get your beauty sleep."
Frank touches Bob a lot, sure, but the thing that makes Bob unsure how much he should read into that is that Frank touches everybody
a lot. Bob may be his go-to guy for piggyback rides, but he also spent almost two hours sleeping with his head in Ray's lap today, and right now he's kneeling behind where Gerard's sitting, hands on Gerard's shoulders as Frank leans forward to say something in his ear, and Bob knows he's in trouble, because seeing Frank and Gerard together like that didn't used
to give him an unpleasant twisty feeling in the pit of his stomach.
The band plays a good show that night. Not that Bob's seen them play many bad ones, but the kids in Spain have been some of the best audiences they've had on the tour, and the band's feeding off of that energy, giving the best performance they can in response. Frank actually stays on the stage, this time, but he's all over, and somewhere around the point where he's sprawled on the stage with his head tilted back, eyes squinched shut and mouth wide open, Bob finds himself wondering how he ever watched Frank play without
getting inconveniently turned on.
Frank's still a ball of energy after the show, and Bob's been around him enough by now to know how this works. When Frank crashes, he'll crash hard, but that won't be for at least another few hours. In the meantime, he's not the only one with a post-show buzz to work off.
"So we're gonna go see how clubs in Spain compare to clubs in Germany," Frank informs Bob when he finds him. Bob's shuffling things around in the van, getting instrument cases and cardboard boxes full of t-shirts packed in as neat and tight as he can and tossing out empty bottles and crumpled chip bags. Van-cleaning's one of those things that's technically not his job, but he and Brian trade off on it, because if they left it to the band they'd be up to their ears in trash.
"Okay," he replies distractedly, wondering if he should try to clean out under the seats at all, and then deciding that's a job for a braver man than him. "Have fun."
Frank stays where he is, leaning against the side of the van. "You should come with."
Bob snorts. "Yeah, and keep an eye on you, right? 'Cause that's exactly how I want to spend my night."
Frank tilts his head down a little and looks up at Bob with big eyes and a guileless expression, and anyone who's known him for more than five minutes shouldn't be at all fooled by that look, but fuck, he pulls it off well. "Bob Bryar, if you'd rather spend your night cleaning out the van
than keeping me out of trouble, I might have to cry."
Put like that, he's got a point. Of course, Bob's not struggling with an increasingly strong urge to do inappropriate things to the van, but he's not going to tell Frank about that part.
Two and a half hours later, Bob has a mild beer buzz, a slight headache, and a sweaty, tired, drunk musician on either arm. No one got into any fights this time, the roundup was definitely easier, and three-fifths of My Chem are walking in a relatively straight line, but Gerard's pretty bombed and Frank's starting the inevitable slide down into exhaustion. Bob counts it as a win when he gets them back to the van without either of them collapsing.
Brian takes first shift driving, Ray calls shotgun, and Otter, Gerard, and Mikey sprawl out in the back, which leaves Bob in the middle with Frank nodding against his shoulder. When Bob's arm falls asleep, he moves, dislodging Frank briefly (Frank makes a grumpy noise of protest without really waking up) and shifting to try and get more comfortable. He ends up leaning against the window in a position that hopefully won't kill his back too much, a bunched-up hoodie wedged between the glass and his head, and then lets Frank snuggle back against him. Bob's too tipsy and tired for an inconvenient hard-on--right now, it's just nice, and he wraps one arm around Frank's back, rests his chin on top of Frank's head, and closes his eyes.
When Bob wakes up a few hours later, his headache is worse and his neck is sore, but Frank is a warm, comfortable weight against him, like sleeping with a hot water bottle that's really good on guitar. His head's more on Bob's chest than on his shoulder by now, and he's got one arm slung loosely across Bob's middle.
Frank stirs a little and then looks up, blinking. It takes a second before he focuses on Bob, and then he smiles. "Hey."
"Hey," Bob replies quietly.
"You make a really good pillow," Frank says, and Bob smiles a little.
Frank leans up, eyes falling closed again, and kisses him on the mouth.
Bob freezes for a second and then rears back a little, startled.
Frank looks at him from up close, biting his lower lip just a bit uncertainly. "And you're kind of hot, and Mikey bet Otter five bucks that you have a crush on me."
Bob's eyebrows go up a little. He's picked up on the fact that Mikey notices a lot more than people usually give him credit for. He just...hadn't noticed Mikey noticing this
Bob darts a glance around. Ray's driving, eyes fixed on the road, and everyone else seems to be asleep. He can hear music from someone's earphones, tinny and distant. It's as close to private as things ever get with everyone in the van.
"Otter owes Mikey five bucks," he says in a low rumble, and leans in.
Frank's mouth opens under his, warm and slick, and his arm tightens around Bob's waist, fingers curling against his hip. Bob glides his palm down Frank's back, hitching him closer, and Frank scrambles into motion, kneeing Bob in the stomach as he climbs into Bob's lap.
"Oof," Bob grunts, and Frank lets out a breath of laughter, and then they're kissing again, Bob's hands sliding under the hem of Frank's t-shirt, and Bob's completely forgotten about the part where they're in the van when Frank pulls back with a swollen mouth and darkened eyes and gasps out "Nosexinthevan."
Bob blinks. "Huh?"
"No sex in the van," Frank repeats, more slowly. "It's a band rule."
"No sex in the van especially when the rest of us are in here
, Iero," Ray says quietly from the front, and Bob starts a little, pushing Frank off of his lap.
"Hey!" Frank protests, but settles back on the seat next to Bob without any further protest.
"Sorry, Toro," Bob says.
"It's cool," Ray says resignedly. "I've heard worse."
Frank turns to sit sideways and looks over at Bob, biting his lip again. "Um. I'm not, like, getting ahead of myself here, am I?"
"Huh?" Bob says, and Frank fidgets a little.
"Well, I mean. There's making out in the van, and there's...other stuff, and just because you're apparently interested in one doesn't mean..."
Bob leans over, cupping Frank's face in one hand and kissing him. He pulls back before they can get carried away again, but keeps his face close to Frank's, speaking low enough for only him to hear.
"Wait until the next time we get to be alone in a room for more than five minutes, and I'll show you how interested I am, Frankie."
Frank grins--this close, Bob can feel it against his cheek--and leans his head against Bob's shoulder. "Okay. Good."
Bob curls his hand around the back of Frank's neck, keeping him close. "You wanna go back to sleep for a while?"
Frank gives a little "mm" of assent, and Bob moves to lie down, stretching across the whole seat and letting Frank get settled on top of him, both of them squirming around until they get comfortable.
Getting Frank alone in a room for more than five minutes turns out to be a challenge. Brian likes to get his band into a hotel whenever they can afford it, but separate rooms are a luxury they can only dream of. Venues have bathrooms and dressing rooms, but also a fucking lot of people constantly going in and out of both. There's a lot of interrupted making out, a lot of frustration and teasing from the other guys, and it seems like no time at all before they're on a plane back to Jersey, with Bob flying back to Chicago the next day for a few blissful days off before he's back on tour with The Used.
They're all sitting in the baggage claim area at Newark, jetlagged and grumpy and waiting for their luggage to come around, when Frank nudges Bob with his shoulder and says quietly, "So, you need somewhere to crash tonight?"
Bob shrugs. "Dunno, I was thinking about maybe investing in a hotel room without six other people in it."
Frank shakes his head. "Nah, man, if I were you I'd save my money for the next time I go on tour for free because a band's just that awesome."
"So we should have a sleepover at your parents' house instead, is that it?"
Frank looks over at Bob and waggles his eyebrows. "My parents are out of town."
They get to Frank's house around nine in the morning, which gives them almost exactly twelve hours until Bob leaves for Chicago. Bob reminds Frank of this when Frank starts trying to take Bob's pants off while yawning so wide his jaw cracks.
"Man, this is bullshit," Frank mutters grumpily, letting his head fall on Bob's chest. "This'll be, like, the fiftieth time we've slept together and not had sex, and not that I don't like cuddling, but seriously
"Sooner you shut up and we get to sleep, sooner we can wake up," Bob grumbles, and either Frank falls asleep before he can reply, or Bob falls asleep first and doesn't hear him.
Bob wakes up to late afternoon light slanting through the windows and the sound of chewing, and turns his head to find Frank sitting cross-legged on the bed with an open box of Pop-Tarts resting in the space between his legs.
"Time is it?" Bob mutters, rubbing his eyes with the heel of his hand.
"Four-thirty," Frank says around a mouthful of toaster pastry, and digs another packet out of the box, holding it out to Bob. "I was gonna wake you up in a minute."
Bob takes the packet and rips it open, breaking off a chunk of Pop-Tart--brown sugar--and cramming it into his mouth. He's got four and a half more hours in Jersey, Frank's bed is small enough that he's almost in Bob's lap as he sits there, and if anyone interrupts them this time, Bob may have to kill them.
Frank finishes his own Pop-Tarts, dusts the crumbs off his fingers, and sets the box aside. "I called my parents to let them know we got in okay," he says, casually. "And then I unplugged the phone and turned both our cells off."
"Yeah?" Bob replies, equally casual. He shoves the last chunk of Pop-Tart into his mouth and chews quickly, then reaches over and hooks a finger into one of Frank's belt loops, tugging gently. "Sounds like you've got plans you don't want to have interrupted."
"Eh, y'know, nothing special." Frank swings one leg over Bob's waist, settling on top of him. "But there is
this really hot guy I finally got into bed after weeks of trying."
Bob slides his hands under Frank's t-shirt and up, and Frank lifts his arms to shrug it off. "Sounds like a good opportunity."
"Yep." Frank tugs at Bob's shirt with one hand and goes for his zipper with the other, like he can't decide which he wants to take off first. "Now if I could just get him naked, we'd really be getting somewhere."
Bob sits up and lets Frank tug his shirt off, then goes for Frank's jeans. Frank backs off to shimmy out of them, and Bob loses his own pants and then grabs Frank by the waist, flipping him over and settling on top of him.
"Hi," he says.
"Hi," Frank replies, squirming around until he can hook one leg around Bob's waist.
Neither of them is in the mood for anything complicated, just looking to finally
get each other off. Bob does what he's been wanting to do for weeks, holds Frank down and rocks against him, and it's fast and messy and fucking perfect. Frank pulls him down for a kiss and bites Bob's lower lip when he comes, muttering "Sorry," and running his tongue over the sore spot later.
Bob rolls to the side, tucking Frank into the curve of his body, and they lie together quietly for a while.
"Hey," Bob says eventually. "I don't want to make things awkward just before I go, but..."
"What happens now?" Frank finishes for him, and Bob nods. It's been easy to just let this happen while they've been on tour and seeing each other every day, but Bob doesn't want to leave without talking about it.
Frank moves away a little, propping himself up on one elbow. "Well. I haven't really been looking for anything serious, relationship-wise, and even if I were, there's the long-distance thing, and the fact that we're both on the road a lot. That said, I'm not dead-set against
long-distance relationships, I already really like hanging out with you out of bed, and I think I could really get to like hanging out with you in
Bob rolls onto his back, looking up at the ceiling. "I've never really done the long-distance relationship thing. Or the no-strings-attached sex thing. And right now I'm not sure if I want to get into either, I just know I want to spend time with you again as soon as I can."
Frank tucks his head against Bob's shoulder, slinging an arm around his waist. "Maybe we should just take it easy for now," he says. "We're touring with The Used again next month, wanna just wait and see how it goes then?"
Bob smiles crookedly, resting a hand on the small of Frank's back. "Sounds like a plan."
Half an hour later, they head downstairs to rifle through the fridge and end up ordering pizza instead, sitting close together on the couch while they eat.
An hour after that, Frank drives Bob to the airport and they spend a long time making out in the lobby, and the realization that they're totally being one of those annoying couples who make out in airport lobbies isn't enough to stop Bob from kissing Frank as much as he can before he finally has to pull away and get through security.
When he lands in Chicago, Bob turns his phone back on, immediately gets the beep that means he has a text waiting, and pulls the message up.call me soon, okay? xo frank
Bob realizes that tonight was probably a little sooner than Frank meant. Still, after he gets home and kicks his shoes off and sprawls out on his own bed
, he pulls his phone back out of his pocket and dials.
When Frank answers, he sounds like he's smiling.
"Hey! How was your flight?"
"Nice and short, compared to the last one I was on," Bob says. "Got your message, but I can call back some other time if now's too late..."
"Now's fine," Frank says instantly.
Bob smiles wryly. "We're...not really doing that great at taking it easy and seeing how it goes, are we?"
Frank laughs. "Maybe not. But hey, if you ask me, taking it easy is overrated."