Oh, The Places You'll Go

Without/Within

Notes: It was Rewind time at sn100 and I quite liked the look of #159 - Random Quotes. So I went to quoteland.com and hit 'random quotes' and when I looked through them to choose one I realized they all told their own part of the story. How cool is that? These are the exact ten quotes that were on the page, all I've done is re-order them a little.

This fic was written for suchthefangirl's birthday.


You never know how short a month is until you pay alimony. -John Barrymore

It wasn't that Casey had anything against paying child support — Charlie was his responsibility, always — it was just that the kid had a nanny, so why couldn't Lisa get a damned job and shoulder her half? It wasn't like he'd asked her to kick him out.

...

Well, okay.

But here he was, wallet emptied by said nanny who'd pointed to holes in Charlie's sneakers and now how the hell was he supposed to get blindingly drunk and forget all his woes?

A hand clapped his shoulder. "Beer?" said the voice attached to it.

Best voice ever, though Casey, and said, "Yes."

*****

If a man proves too clearly and convincingly to himself...that a tiger is an optical illusion--well, he will find out he is wrong. The tiger will himself intervene in the discussion, in a manner which will be in every sense conclusive. -Lord (George Gordon) Byron

Danny was flirting with him. Danny always flirted, had done since forever, it didn't mean anything. His thigh was pressed against the length of Casey's, but only because there was no room in the booth. The fact that he stayed like that when there were just the two of them left was laziness. Nothing more. They were guys' guys. Loved women. Loved...breasts.

The flirting was practice or something. Harmless.

Mostly.

"Fuck, Casey, please," begged Dan into his mouth, outside in the dark.

"It's not real," said Casey and gasped as Dan took his hand, pressing it against strange hardness.

Real enough.

*****

Sex: the thing that takes up the least amount of time and causes the most amount of trouble. -John Barrymore

They should've waited. They shouldn't've- Fuck. He was a two-beer-queer and god he should know better. It wasn't like he could even-

But Danny had been on his knees sucking Casey's dick and it felt good even if it-

And Casey had tried to stop him worrying; pulled him to his feet, shoved his hand in Dan's pants and brought him off lickety-spit, wiping his hand on Dan's jacket.

Then he'd noticed. That there was still nothing. And his face turned pale and he said, "I'm sorry to impose," and he didn't let Casey speak and then he was gone.

*****

The difference between psychiatrists and other mentally disturbed people is something like the relationship between concave and convex madness. -Karl Kraus

"Listen, I'm not asking you to break patient confidentiality, just tell me if he's been by."

"Did you call him?"

"No, I didn't think of that. Of course I called him. He didn't pick up." Casey used the full-on-jackass tone he kept for special occasions.

"You know," said Abby, "Sometimes people don't want to be found. Sometimes they're protecting themselves."

What the hell? Danny didn't need protecting from him. Casey wasn't the one with the hard-on. He was Dan's best friend; if he could deal with Danny's gay epiphany, Dan should at least pick up his damn phone.

Crazy shrink.

*****

It is wise to direct your anger towards problems -- not people; to focus your energies on answers -- not excuses. -William Arthur Ward

The thing was, he wasn't mad at Danny for randomly deciding that now would be the best time to come out and on to Casey. That was the way Casey's life worked after all: stroll, stroll, stroll, fuck banana skin.

The problem was they had to work together. And it was awkward, off, killing the show, and soon Dana would kill them. That's what made him mad; that he didn't know how to fix this, how to make Dan stay in the office instead of running, how to make his smiles reach his eyes again.

He'd figure it out. Somehow.

*****

I would like to find a stew that will give me heartburn immediately, instead of at three o clock in the morning. -John Barrymore

A week past 'The Incident' (capitalized and quotation-marked for posterity), Casey nursed a cup of coffee at too late at night, or too early in the morning, and let himself remember, for the first time, how it felt to have Dan's weight against him, lips murmuring against his, even as they kissed.

He felt a twinge — of what? Gas, maybe — and shifted in his chair.

He couldn't settle, though, nothing was comfortable any more. It was as though the world had taken a half-step to the right and left Casey exactly where he was, out of kilter. He had to think.

*****

God gave us memories that we might have roses in December. -John M. Barrie

There was a time, back in Dallas, when they'd sat on Casey's porch, drinking beer and staring at the stars from the comfort of the glider, talking about who even knew what now.

Danny had said, "I'd die for you, you know," and it must have grown organically from their conversation because Casey didn't remember being surprised, or shocked.

He'd turned to see Dan's profile haloed silver in the moonlight, his eyes glittering as he gazed at the sky, and thought, with a rush of warmth that fizzed in his belly, "I know."

"I know," he'd said. And Danny laughed.

*****

That's what learning is, after all; not whether we lose the game, but how we lose and how we've changed because of it and what we take away from it that we never had before, to apply to other games. Losing, in a curious way, is winning. -Richard Bach, The Bridge Across Forever, 1984

It turned out he'd already had his own gay epiphany, he just hadn't noticed. Which was kind of embarrassing for a writer who prided himself on his observational skills.

He figured he'd already let go of the construct of him as a happily married man and a full-time father and somehow he was still standing — he might as well lose the battle of repression, too.

It was a relief, actually. To be able to look in the mirror and say, "I love him. I want him," made him grin like a crazy person.

The game wasn't over yet, though.

*****

Love takes off masks that we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within." -James Baldwin

"Are you sure?" Danny said. "Because you really have to be sure."

"Danny, swear to God, this is the most sure I've been ever," Casey replied, finally, finally allowing himself to reach out and touch, one hand splaying across Dan's chest. "I was drunk before and...kind of obtuse, actually." He felt his fingers soak in the warmth of Dan's skin and smiled.

"Seriously? I'm scared half to death — no, further — but I can't be me without you. Not now I know. Does that make sense?"

Danny leaned in and kissed him, soft and slow, so Casey guessed it did.

*****

If you can spend a perfectly useless afternoon in a perfectly useless manner, you have learned how to live. -Lin Yutang

"I can't believe I'm letting you do this," said Casey.

"Yeah, well it was this or we got dressed and went to market."

"Okay." Casey laced his hands behind his head and attempted to look down the length of his body to see how Dan was doing.

"It'll freak Natalie out," said Dan, grinning. "She won't know what to think."

"How will Natalie even-" Casey struggled to his elbows. "Nice shade, Danny. Where'd you get it? The hooker store?"

"I think it's fetching."

"Fetching, my ass."

"Thought you'd never ask," said Dan, tossing the bottle aside.

This should be good.


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