Chapter 26

Alter Ego.


Matthew turned.

"I... I seriously just..." Gilbert motioned aimlessly with his hands and whimpered. "I seriously cannot do that."

Matthew tilted his head.

"You know... what you intend to do." Gilbert rolled his eyes when Matthew still didn't understand. "You intend to have me meet your father and blah, blah, happiness and rainbows." He grumbled. "I just... I can't do that!"

Gilbert was so insecure in this one moment, more insecure in himself then he'd ever been. This wasn't something he could just stumble into.

Matthew seemed to read him for that second, and after an oddly long, awkward pause, he made down the street.

"Matt! Wait! Did I-"

"Just follow along!"

Gilbert heaved a breath and jumped into a fast stride.

The whole time Matthew ran, Gilbert ran along behind. How odd, the role-reversal between them now. Instead of Gilbert leading all the time, Matthew had taken a true initiative.

And the whole time, he decided to not complain that his side ached horribly, or the fact that his hair was so irritatingly waving in that specific spot on his face. He just followed, because, if he was honest with himself, there wasn't much more to do.

Matthew made a sharp left into an alleyway of red brick and rough gray concrete. A stray McDonald's bag sat on the ground as a sliver of the waning light lay upon it. There was a familiar rusted ladder attached to one of the buildings' walls. When Gilbert looked up, he saw the darkening sky between two tall walls.

Matthew was already halfway up the ladder. "What're you waiting for?" He raised a blonde brow.

Gilbert shook his head and blinked a few times, then climbed up the ladder as fast as he could while still not doing something ridiculously stupid. When he reached the roof, Matthew was yet again one step ahead. He was perched on the edge of the building, looking back at Gilbert as his hair curled around his face. He motioned for Gilbert to sit beside him.

Gilbert padded over and, with an 'oof', sat at the edge of the rooftop.

Matthew gave him a small glance.

"Are either of us even ready for... any of this?" Matthew inquired, looking away to the skyline.

Gilbert sighed reluctantly and shrugged. "I have no clue."

"Pfft." Matthew smiled (quite cutely, Gilbert noted) and shook his head.

"Eh. Who cares anymore?" Gilbert laughed genuinely.

Matthew rolled his lavender eyes. He reached out for Gilbert's hand and grasped it. "It doesn't matter."

"Yeah." Gilbert nodded, hanging his legs over the edge. Luckily they weren't on the street-facing side of the old, rickety building. "Everything'll be fine."

Matthew dipped his head in agreement. He then leaned over, took Gilbert's cheek in his empty hand, and kissed him lightly.

When Gilbert pulled away after a moment, Matthew lay his head on Gil's shoulder.

"I finally think I pieced together some of those lyrics." Gilbert finally said, after two minutes or so of silent harmony.

"Oh?" Matthew lifted his head and looked him in the eye.

"Well, yeah." Gilbert beamed proudly. "And I think I know what the name has to be."

Matthew cocked his head with a curious growing grin.

"Alter-Ego. Yeah?"

Matthew squeezed his hand and looked out over the city again, taking a sweeping panoramic view of the place they'd adventured and scoured.


A year later

An undisclosed bar basement in Columbus

A powerful electric guitar riff blasted through his ears.

There was quite a commotion, with a small cheer cascading into a chorus of screams.

"Well, I guess everyone knows what we're playing next." Gilbert joked.

He could barely hear anything else under another huge wave of jarring, beautiful sound. "Who even knows how we wrote this song? Seriously, any of ya?"

There were at least fifty people who very willingly offered to tell the entire story in high detail, but Gilbert went ahead anyway. "Well, you see," He began, "I met this clumsy kid a while back in a coffee shop."

"Oh, come on, they know my name."

There was another huge scream when the crowd recognized the voice. If it would have come as a surprise to anyone, the internet took to the pair almost immediately after they actually got on the 'social radar'.

Matthew came out from the backstage area and leapt up onto the main stage. He wasn't even in his disguise, something he'd come to terms with the past year. "Hey, look, I didn't trip over myself trying to get up here." He joked sarcastically.

Gilbert clapped. "Good job Matthew for not breaking your nose!"

Matthew grinned and punched him in the arm lightly.

"Hey, you two." Francis called, "We've got a time limit, and it happens to not include your lovey-dovey behavior. Not that we don't want to see it, because it's adorable."

"So he met me in a coffee shop." Matthew pushed along insistently. "And things happened."

"Well, telling the condensed version is no fun." Gilbert teased.

Matthew rolled his eyes as another loud guitar riff ripped through the air.

"So I guess that's just what this song is."

"A story." Matthew completed, as the drum solo began and the music flowed from their fingertips.

And a new story opened up, unfolding its chapters before them.


I'm kinda sad! Like really! That was so fun...

I wish the fun could've lasted longer, friends, but it's time to part. *tears*

I hope this ending satisfied you, even if it may have not been something wickedly long or the like. But I've been wanting this for so, so long, and it makes me kinda proud.

I apologize for the wait. I couldn't write just the right scene for like, a month. Or longer. I appear to not have counted, lol.

Anyway, I would like to thank the people who've been reviewing for an eternity, even if it was just a short chapter or even just an update stating how I was doing. I love you, seriously. And everyone who followed, and favorited, and just... everyone. I love you all.

I hope you all stay tuned in to my account, just in case I might write something awesome like this again one day.

And before I sign off for the very last time, if any of you just wanna check in on me or just screw around (and see what I get up to while procrastinating), I'm Redlington over on Tumblr.

So, ah, I guess it's time.

Signing off,

-Redlington (loves you)