Title: Very Bad Jockey Slash Fic 2, 1/?
Disclaimer: The jockeys mentioned in this fic aren't gayer than a spring parade, just portrayed as such. Er, most of the time.
Pairings: Gary Stevens/Alex Solis, Corey Nakatani/David Flores
Rating: PG-13 (at the moment) for swearing
Genre: Humor, melodrama, angst
Warnings: Angst that's harder to slice through than frozen pork chops.
Summary: As any person in rehab can tell you, recovering ain't all it's cracked up to be.
Was it all just a dream?
Alex wanted to believe that it was. Sometimes, when he sat there thinking and contemplating Gary’s hot manliness, it was easy to brush off the events several months ago as some kind of bizarre hallucination. A product of smoking too much weed, if you will. Jockeys in general did a lot of drugs--when you were underpaid, under appreciated, and undersized, you tended to need special substances to keep you from killing people with sporks. Before the 60s and the free-flow of drugs, there were a lot of suspicious deaths around the racetrack.
But he was digressing.
It was so damned easy to put off that horrific time to being higher than a monkey on crack, but something happened every day to bring reality crashing back down on his head.
The truth was that no matter how much they pretended that everything was all right, none of them had gotten over it. They were different people, and the aftereffects of their nightmarish encounter showed in their daily lives.
It was in the way Gary couldn’t let anyone touch him, much less approach him with food.
It was in the way Alex hovered over Gary like a mother hen, accompanying him even to the bathroom to make sure no deranged gay jockey was going to kidnap his lover again.
It was in the way David knitted more furiously than ever, and every single jockey, his significant other, and dog had received a warm knitted afghan for Labor Day.
It was in the way Corey peed in his pants every time he heard a loud noise.
No, it wasn’t a dream. Things were never going to be the same again.
“Fuck!” Alex swore as he strode back into the jockeys’ room splattered with dirt and breathing heavily. “I can’t believe I lost that race.”
“Buck up, cowboy,” Gary said sympathetically.
Some of the newer jockeys gave each other “what the fuck?” looks of confusion at Gary’s choice of language, but the older and wiser ones had long since gotten used to Gary’s quirk.
Corey ran in a second later sporting a heavy blush on his cheeks and an even heavier pee stain on his crotch.
“What happened to you, Nakatani?” Mick Ruis jeered from his locker, shifting his anorexic form in clear disdain.
“Back off, you badly-dressed little shit,” David said viciously. “Before I break your twiggy arms.” He emphasized his point by jabbing his knitting needles threateningly in Mick’s direction. The younger, naïve jockey let out a little squeak of terror and scurried off to throw up the water he had been foolish enough to consume earlier.
David was a lot more violent now. In fact, he was startlingly similar to…Alex before It.
What had happened to Gary, Alex, David, and Corey was number 3 on the “Jockeys’ List Of Things To Avoid Talking About Because of Discomfort Factor,” second only to number 2, rebelling against old, rich white men who refused to recognize them as humans and not dispensable midget slaves; and number 1, butter. There was an unspoken agreement to never mention the name of Tyler Baze, because doing so would guarantee death. When anyone did talk about him, they referred to the deceased jockey as He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named.
David laid down his knitting materials and hugged a deeply embarrassed Corey, who was on the verge of tears.
“Was it the sound of the starting gate again, honey?” David asked, concerned.
“Yeah. Scared me and I…I…”
“Peed?” his boyfriend supplied helpfully.
“Yeah.” It was amazing how much despair could be packed into one uttered syllable.
“It’s okay, sweetie. It’s okay.”
Corey clutched at David like a lifeline until he realized he was getting his pee stain on David and let go remorsefully.
Alex watched the scene unfold in silence, stony faced. Corey had discovered his psychological trigger when he came back from his first ride after It with the seat of his pants soaked with urine. They tested it out a couple more times with action movies and sudden bursts of music. The result was all the same: Corey’s bladder released itself every time he heard a loud noise.
Alex lowered his head a little, overcome with feelings of shame. If only I had let him go to the bathroom, he thought sadly.
If only I had let him go to the bathroom.
Gary pasted on a smile as another fan, breathless with excitement, approached him for an autograph. He couldn’t explain the antsy, claustrophobic sensation he got whenever someone stepped too close to him now; he could only attempt to mask it with a façade of easiness.
The middle-aged woman responded to his smile with a wheeze of happiness and reached out to touch his arm. Gary flinched and took a step back.
“I’ve really got to go,” he said hurriedly, and smiled weakly before all but running the rest of the way into the jockeys’ room.
Dizziness hit him in waves as he made his way to his locker, causing him to stumble.
“Gary, are you all right?”
“What’s wrong, man?”
Concerned voices neared and all he could think was get away get away. He took a calming breath, feeling the erratic pounding of his heart in his ears.
“I’m fine, guys,” he said quietly, turning to face them. “Just give me a minute and I’ll be fit as a fiddle.”
“If you say so, Gary. Just call us if you need anything.”
Gary never said it, but he hated how everyone coddled him now. How they treated him like he was made of glass about to shatter any second.
“Thanks, I’ll holler,” he said tightly.
As Gary’s gaze drifted back to the set of silks in front of him, a movement caught his eye. Mick Ruis was eating a piece of bread secretly, shielding it from the rest of the jockeys, but Gary had a very clear view from his vantage point. His eyes were riveted to the sight of Mick’s mouth biting into the bread and chewing that fluffy whiteness, tearing into the slice with a flash of teeth--
Terror as Tyler shoved a handful of bread in his mouth, silencing his cries for help. He couldn’t move, he couldn’t think, he couldn’t see. All he could feel were the carbs sliding insidiously into his bloodstream and Tyler’s hand on his thigh, touching him where he only let Alex touch, Tyler’s hot, smelly breath on his face, Tyler’s other hand so close to violating him. His chest heaved as he tried to vomit, but there was nothing in his stomach to retch back up, and he could taste bitterness and bile in his throat.
"You're not going anywhere. I'm going to teach you a lesson, love."
Tyler dug his finger into his belly button viciously.
--oh god no god no--
“I told you not to call me that!”
--it was happening all over again--
Tyler’s voice in his ear. “You and I were meant to be.”
--no, never, get away get away GET AWAY--
Gary heard someone screaming in the distance. The shrill screams got closer and closer until he realized that he was the one screaming.
“Gary--fuck--calm down, it’ll be okay--” A familiar voice--Alex, his subconscious whispered--was pleading with him. He opened tightly-clenched eyes to see Alex kneeling next to him, worry and fear written across his face. Alex reached out to hug him, and the sight of his nearing arms sent Gary rocketing backward.
“DON’T TOUCH ME!” Gary screamed, body trembling as he twisted away from him.
Hurt shined in Alex’s eyes at Gary’s words. He drew away from Gary haltingly.
I’m sorry, Gary thought, and the pain that lanced through him was similar to what he felt the first time he watched his father kill a chicken. I’m so sorry, but he couldn’t say the words through his fiercely chattering teeth.
“What’s going on here?” A strong voice filtered past the terror still smothering Gary, and he recognized it as belonging to Mike Smith.
Someone--he didn’t know who--told Mike what happened quickly. The older jockey nodded in understanding and assessed the situation.
“I think it’s time you all went to a group therapy session,” Mike said, gesturing towards Gary, Alex, Corey, and David.
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