© HELLMOUTHS

Quiet

This is Sergio’s request.  I think he really likes jealous Logan fics.  Sergio, I owed you this just because, but since it was your birthday yesterday, it’s doubling as a present.  I hope you had a great day!  

So this is RPS and takes place at Coachella and is just plain fluffy and cheesy and all those wonderful things.

At a huge event like this, it’s never really silent, but there are moments quieter than others — when exhaustion paired with elation permeates the air, when the scent of bodies, weed and booze are drowned out by a feeling of calm as sound floats hampered on the breeze as easily as a struck key on a piano, a pluck of a guitar string.

Logan hasn’t felt one of those moments this year; it seems as though he’s spent the whole time wondering where the fuck Kendall is.

Not that Logan doesn’t like James.  James is like that annoying, perfect brother who stays on your case about being the best you can be.  The better looking and in-shape brother who gets first pick on everything just because.  Not that Logan is jealous or anything.  Or he hasn’t been, because Kendall has always picked Logan.  Logan has always been Kendall’s first choice.

Until this stupid weekend.  Logan can’t even really remember what bands they’ve already listened to or what day it is because he’s too goddamn busy thinking something must’ve happened with Kendall and James in New York.  The two of them have been doing a lot of smiling and whispering and hanging around up each other’s asses.  It’s really fucking annoying.  Like, who acts like that?

True, Logan has been spending quite a bit of time with girl-Kendall, but she’s a pretty cool chick.  And she’s a chick.  Just because Logan wants to hang out with girl-Kendall doesn’t mean he doesn’t want real-Kendall around.  That’s not it at all.

Why did James have to come along?  He doesn’t even like this kind of thing.  Whatever.  Logan doesn’t care anyway.  Kendall can do whatever or whoever he wants, as long as he’s happy, goddammit. 

Who’s he kidding?  He knows what he’s feeling is jealousy times a million.  It’s more than jealousy.  It’s pain and want and shame and want and denial and want and almost-love and want.  Whatever.  There’s nothing new about it.  No reason to change now.  It’s not like Logan Henderson can just all of a sudden decide to make his best friend his boyfriend.  He laughs out loud at the thought.  Trying to picture introductions makes him laugh harder.  This is my boyfriend Kendall.  He laughs so hard his eyes start to burn.  From laughing.  Not because it felt so nice to think my boyfriend Kendall.

Logan really just wants to get some sleep, but he doesn’t know where Kendall is so he can’t.  James is supposed to be out running, but Logan imagines the other two guys found a nice, quiet spot to mess around.  Logan visibly cringes at the thought — James’ dumb, humongous hands where Logan has only dreamed of his own being, Kendall moaning out a name that isn’t Logan.  God, it’s disgusting.

Whatever.  As long as Kendall is happy, goddammit.  And he seems happy lately, doesn’t he?

James shows up about the time Logan is wondering if the smile Kendall had on his face the night before was an I just got fucked sort of smile, and Logan notices James is all sweaty and out of breath.  Instead of thinking his breathlessness is from a good jog, Logan can’t help but assume it’s from a much more carnal activity.

Which is why Logan can’t help but snap, “Does Halston know?”

James jumps, obviously not knowing Logan was awake.  “Hey, Logan,” he says, laughing.  “What are you even talking about?”James looks at Logan with a quirked brow, his dumb face perfect despite the sweat and red cheeks.

"You’d better not fucking hurt him or I swear, I’ll try my best to kick your ass."

Again, James laughs and shakes his head.  “Whoa, Shrimp.  What’s got you all worked up?”

"I just want Kendall happy and if you can do that then —"

"Hold on, hold on, hold on," James interrupts.  "What the hell are you going off about?"

Logan’s face heats up when he realizes he’s probably way out of line.  He doesn’t even remember sitting up, but he looks down at his hands in his lap.  “Just, you and Kendall seem really close these last weeks and I know he kind of likes a guy now and again and I just thought…”

"You thought…what? That Kendall and I were screwing?"  A loud, boisterous laugh explodes from James, and he throws his head back, arms going across his stomach.  "What’s gotten into you, huh?  You know Kendall and I aren’t anything more than good friends."

"Well, you’ve both just been whispering a lot and disappearing together and he’s barely…he’s barely — "

"Barely paid any attention to you?" James asks, cutting Logan off.  Logan opens his mouth to say something, probably to protest his apparent codependency, but he decides to just shut up.  He nods instead.

"I just feel kind of left out," Logan says, suddenly felling dumb and childish.

"So you automatically assume Kendall and I are fucking?"

"James, I don’t know what to think," is all Logan can say.  He has been taking his thoughts to the extreme, but then he’s always known when he and Kendall behaved the way James and Kendall have, it’s always been a little bit more than friendly.  They’ve always straddled a line, never passed it.

"Look," James starts, sitting down beside Logan, throwing am arm over his shoulder, "if it makes you feel better, Kendall has been talking about you the whole time we’ve spent together."

"He has?" Logan asks, and he wants to slap himself for how hopeful he sounds.

"He has.  But it hasn’t necessarily been good."  Logan’s expression shifts and James squeezes his shoulder.  "You’ve been hanging out with girl-Kendall.  And that’s fine, but Kendall is trying to give you space, okay?  It, geez I shouldn’t be telling you this, it makes him feel like he’s getting replaced —"

"That makes no sense!" Logan shouts.  "No one can replace Kendall —"

"It actually makes plenty of sense.  Hey, I know you guys pretty damn well and I’d have to be blind to not see."

Logan swallows, makes a face, plays dumb just like he always does.

"See what?"

James makes an exasperated face, rolls his eyes.  “Logan, did you really think he’d pine away for you forever?  He’s tired of waiting.”

Logan doesn’t respond but his heart turns it up a zillion notches and he suddenly his mouth is all dry.  Everything seems to go quiet, the world put on mute, and he can’t swallow so it’s probably good his mouth has dried up.  Is that what he’s been doing?  Making Kendall play some kind of fucked up waiting game?

"Listen, you can keep playing dumb forever, but let Kendall out if it if he wants."  Logan finally turns to James, their faces inches apart.  “I love you guys, dude.  Both of you.  Stop being dumb.”

“What do you—”

“Just because you guys dig each other in more than a friend kind of way, doesn’t make you someone other than you, if that’s what you’re worried about.  You don’t have to go around talking about how much you love dick and — ”

“You’re so weird, man.”

“And, ew, how could you think I’d go for Kendall?”  James wrinkles his nose in disgust.  “If I’m going to go for a dude, he’s not going to be twiggy.”

“Someone more like Carlos?” Logan says, wrestling his way out of the choke hold he suddenly finds himself in.

————-

It’s the last day and Logan still hasn’t seen Kendall since his chat with James.  The feeling is strange — having what he’s always known be confirmed, the words spoken aloud chiseling them into a screwed up reality.

Logan just doesn’t know what the fuck he’s supposed to do now.  He knows he needs to talk to Kendall, but the time he has where they can be alone is slipping away with the last few rays of daylight.

He’s all but given up, slipping into a crowd to get closer to some music when he finds the subject of his thoughts, sprawled out on the ground.  Kendall has spread out his flannel shirt, his head lying on top of it to keep from getting his hair all muddy.  It doesn’t seem to have helped, because he’s filthy, dirt on his face and clothes and spotted all over his exposed arms in the tank top he wears.  Logan thinks Kendall’s eyes are closed behind his no-longer-needed sunglasses, because he makes no move as Logan hovers over him.  Logan sits next to him, presses his hip to Kendall’s and sighs out loud, the small contact being something he’s missed over the last few days, few weeks.

“Hey, Logan,” Kendall says.  Logan should be surprised Kendall knew it was him, but he’s not.

“Hey, Kendall,” Logan replies.  He looks down at Kendall, taking in his disheveled appearance from head to toe, and he smiles, because Kendall looks his best when he’s a mess.  The stars are coming out, replacing the garish sunlight with something much more silver, and Logan can’t tear his eyes away from the sliver of flesh peeking out from between Kendall’s shirt and shorts.  He can’t count the amount of times he’s seen the skin of Kendall’s stomach, but it’s never seemed such a tease before.  It’s just a tiny bit of exposed skin, clean where the rest of Kendall is filthy, heated silver from the approaching moon, but it’s making Logan go back on everything he’s ever believed, rethink every thought he’s ever fought. 

Kendall takes off his sunglasses, narrowing his eyes at Logan.  “Like what you see?” he asks, chuckling quietly.

Logan decides to jump right into it, afraid of losing nerve.  “You’ve been avoiding me.”

Avoiding sounds so rude.  I’ve just been giving you some time without me,” Kendall replies, rising up and propping himself on his elbows. 

“Why?”

“Logan,” Kendall starts, lying back flat on his back, throwing an arm over his eyes, “I’m just tired, okay?  I — shit — okay, this used to be okay, like, when we were first getting to know each other and I could just enjoy being around you and learning about you and not really knowing how what I was feeling was — fuck.  Because now, when I’m with you I still feel alone.  And I’m angry and tired of waiting because this has always been your call.  God, the idea of not being around you so much hurts, but I’m not obligated to stand around and watch you live happily ever after either.  So there’s that.”

And, goddamnit if Logan hasn’t seen Kendall be brutally honest before.  He’s seen Kendall’s nostrils flare, his eyes flash when laid-back, calm Kendall fizzles away in a hot vapor of anger.  But this thing between them they’ve been dancing around for years has just been laid out in less than ten seconds.  Logan is impressed and horrified.

“Are you high?” Logan asks.  It’s dumb but it’s the only thing he can get out.

“Um, probably?  I think I’ve been high for, like, two or three days.”

Logan lies on his back next to Kendall, shoulder to shoulder, elbow to elbow, hand to hand.  “I’m sorry,” Logan says.

“Yeah,” Kendall replies, his voice cut-off and choked.

“We’re in a boy band.” Logan zones out on the stars, lets the dark and the music curl around him, keep him warm as the air cools down.

“Yeah,” Kendall says.

“I’m from Texas.”

“Yeah,” Kendall says.

“And you’re from Kansas.”

“Yeah, but my family’s pretty liberal.  That’s all I’m sayin’.”

“My grandpa would hate me.”

Kendall turns his head; Logan can feel him staring at his profile.  “Your mom loves me.”

Logan has one of those moments, those quiet moments when exhaustion paired with elation permeates the air, when the scent of bodies, weed and booze are drowned out by a feeling of calm as sound floats hampered on the breeze as easily as a struck key on a piano, a pluck of a guitar string.

Possibility is a quiet sound, a sound he couldn’t quite hear until now.

“Yeah,” Logan replies.  “And your mom loves me.”

So he turns his head to meet Kendall’s eyes, dark as pine in the low light, the black of his iris wide open to see possibility right along with Logan. 

The thing is, Kendall has always seen it.

Logan swallows, something like a sobering joy pulsing through him, and he looks at Kendall’s lips.  He licks his own, the thought of their mouths pressing together never seeming so real.  Logan thinks it might be okay now. 

“I really want to kiss you,” Kendall says, the words whispered on a breath and moving across Logan’s lips — a promise.

“Take me somewhere you can.”  Logan moves his hand to interweave his fingers with Kendall’s and it’s all warmth and strength and assuredness.

“How about right here?” Kendall bites his lip, moves in a little closer.

Logan breathes deep.  Someone might see. 

“O-Okay,” Logan answers.

So Kendall’s mouth presses against Logan’s, and it doesn’t matter if anyone sees because — it’s true what people say — it’s like they’re the only two people in existence.

Maybe Logan can’t scream to the world that he loves Kendall.  Maybe someday, he will anyway.

64
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