Here to Stay Ch. 02bytml_writer©
Cassidy stared as Gavin led Emmett into the club. She smirked to herself, proud of the match. She knew they would get along. There was only one problem: Gavin was a little too crazy for Emmett. It was readily apparent, written all over his face and in his eyes. At least with Emmett he didn't have to worry about being obvious in that manner. She could tell, though, that Emmett was, as with almost everyone else he met, keeping himself distant enough to only be friends, and nothing more. Cassidy watched as Emmett took his seat, inadvertently letting his hand slide down Gavin's arm. Gavin shuddered at the contact, his arm tingling from Emmett's light touch.
"Hey, you two," Cassidy shouted over the music. "How was dinner?"
"It was great," Emmett answered, smiling. "The food was really good," he added, turning his head and smiling in Gavin's direction. Cassidy immediately saw Gavin's eyes light up. "The company wasn't too bad, either."
"Yeah, at least for you," Gavin retorted, laughing.
"Hey, I'm going to go get a drink. What do you want Emmett?" Cassidy asked.
"Ice water with lemon. Thanks, Cass."
"Not a problem. Is it okay if I steal Gavin, too?"
"Shouldn't that be up to Gavin?" Gavin interrupted, referring to himself.
They walked over to the bar and waited. Cassidy looked at Gavin, who was looking across the room at Emmett, watching. Once he noticed Cassidy staring at him, he was a bit uncomfortable.
"You're going to be great, you know. You're already waiting for his beckoning call to give you an excuse to touch him, or talk to him, or do something for him." Gavin stared at Cassidy after this remark, surprised. Cassidy laughed at his, 'Am I really that obvious?' expression. "You need to be careful, Gav. I don't know how it happened, but I can already tell you're crazy about him, after spending one night with him. He needs someone to live with, to be a friend. He doesn't need a boyfriend."
"He's gay?" Gavin asked, shocked.
"What? You didn't¬?shit."
Gavin grabbed the ice water and beer off the counter, walked over to the table, gave Emmett his drink, and sat down, leaving Cassidy to wait at the bar alone.
"Why didn't you tell me?" Gavin asked, a little too sternly. Emmett's heart immediately dropped, and he shifted uneasily in his seat. "Why didn't you tell me you're gay?" Gavin repeated. Emmett immediately closed up, and Gavin noticed the change in expression in his eyes.
"The same reason you don't tell people you own and run three restaurants. I don't want people to judge me for what they think I am; I want them to see the real me and gather their own conclusions." Emmett waited a beat. "Sorry you had to find out from Cassidy."
"Did you think I'd care?"
"I didn't know, honestly," Emmett replied, feeling Cassidy slide into the booth next to him. No sooner had she slid in that she slid back out, pulling Emmett¬¬—or trying to, anyways—with her.
"Come on, let's go dance, Em," she cajoled, taking his arm.
"Cass, I'm in the mid?"
"Come on," she demanded, taking him with her.
Gavin watched as they made their way to the dance floor. He felt guilty, in a way, for not coming straight out with the truth. Gavin figured that Emmett would realize it soon enough, though. He took a sip of his beer and glanced to the dance floor again, but his eyes stopped. He watched Cassidy and Emmett dance, and was completely enthralled. He quickly realized that both of them were extremely good dancers, graceful, and overall, quite an attractive sight. What really entranced Gavin was Emmett, though. The way he moved perfectly, the way he looked, the fact that a bystander would have no idea that he was blind. Gavin stared the entire time they were out there, and was brought back to reality by Cassidy's remark to him.
"Hey, Gav, hasn't anyone ever told you that staring isn't polite?"
"What, is there some beautiful woman alone out there?" Emmett asked.
"Uh, not exactly, Em," Cassidy said, looking at Gavin. She mouthed, 'You didn't tell him?' to which Gavin shook his head in the negative.
"Oh, that's right, because I was with her," Emmett continued, chuckling at his own joke, oblivious to the tense moment between Gavin and Cassidy.
"Emmett, I really need to go. I have a pressing social engagement," Cassidy told him, getting up from the table. She kissed his cheek. "I'll talk to you later." She leaned over into Gavin's ear. "You better not fuck this up, because I will kick your ass if you end up hurting him." She smiled and walked out.
"What time is it?" Emmett asked Gavin.
"Ten-thirty. I'm getting a headache. Do you want to come outside with me?"
"Yeah, I'm ready to split anyways. I know it's early, but I don't care."
They walked outside, happy for the comparatively quiet noise of the city rather than loud music.
"I've decided to accept your offer," Gavin told Emmett as they walked down the sidewalk. "I called the movers and they can have me completely moved in three days, so in about a week I'll call them."
"That's great." Emmett stopped walking and turned to face Gavin. He didn't know where Gavin's eyes were, but he made his best attempt to look into them, even without seeing. "Thank you, Gavin. I know it's only been a night, and you're moving in with a stranger, but it means a lot to me that you'll take the time out of your life to help me, and learn, and just care."
Gavin stood there, tears forming behind his eyes. In barely over 24 hours, Gavin had fallen head-over-heels for Emmett. He didn't believe that anything of true substance could ever form in that amount of time, nor did he believe in love at first sight. But somehow, Gavin felt something for Emmett he had not felt before. He took a deep breath and gathered his composure.
"You're welcome, Emmett. I need a friend, anyways. Other than Cassidy, I'm pretty much alone."
"No girlfriend or anything?" Emmett inquired.
"Uh, about that. I didn't get the chance to tell you inside, because Cassidy stole you to go dance. I . . . uh . . . I really don't care that you're gay, Emmett, because, well, I am, too." Gavin did not miss the surprise in Emmett's eyes.
"Oh. Uh, okay."
The two started walking again for a few minutes until Emmett stopped.
"Do you want to see my apartment? It's still early."
"If you wanted to show me, that would be just fine."
They drove to the apartment building, and Gavin escorted Emmett inside, only to be greeted by an enthusiastic Cecelia.
"Good evening, Dr. Clark," she said. Emmett could hear the smile in her voice.
"Hello, Cecelia. I'll have you know, I'm about to give up in having you call me 'Emmett'." Emmett paused for a few seconds before continuing. "Oh, where are my manners. Cecelia, this is Gavin Adams. He will be sharing my apartment after Matt moves out in a few days."
"That's wonderful. It's a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Adams. Emmett," she nodded.
"The pleasure is mine, Cecelia," Gavin answered back.
"Thank you, Cecelia, for finally getting my name right. I'll see you tomorrow evening."
"Good night, Emmett. It was nice meeting you, Mr. Adams."
"It's Gavin, Cecelia," Gavin replied. "It was nice to meet you, too."
Emmett and Gavin went up the three floors, and stopped outside the apartment. Emmett unlocked the door, and stepped in, finding the lights and switching them on. Gavin followed him in, closing the door gently, then looked around and stopped.
"Wow," he said, staring at the high ceilings and chic design.
"Yeah, I wish I could see it most of the time. Having it described to you and actually seeing it are two very different things," Emmett replied, setting his bag and cane down in their designated spot. "May I get you a drink?"
"Uh, no thanks, I don't think I'm going to stay that long," Gavin replied.
"Well, this is the kitchen and living room."
"I see. Uh, where's the kitchen table?" Gavin asked.
"We eat at the counter," Emmett answered.
"Oh." Gavin looked to his right to the living room, which wasn't quite as large as the kitchen. It was simply but elegantly furnished. Emmett then led him over to the hallway. He pushed open the first door on the left, and Gavin peered in, surprised.
"Yes, surprisingly enough, we have our own laundry room. It's wonderful," Emmett stated, closing the door. He walked to the second doorway and flipped on the light just inside.
"This is my bedroom," Emmett said, stepping around the queen-sized bed and to the bathroom, "and this is my bathroom." Gavin stared at the sight. It was immaculate. Everything had its own place. The bathroom was very large, and featured a double sink, a shower, and a large, jetted bathtub. Gavin's thoughts immediately wandered to what could be done in both the large shower and large bathtub other than bathing. He pulled himself together as Emmett led him out of the room and across the hallway.
"This will be your room. Matt tends to be a little messy in here, so I won't go in, but you can take a look." Gavin stepped into the cluttered room. It was very large, had a double-sized bed, and also had the bathroom connected to it. It was also a nice bathroom, but only had a shower, toilet, and single sink. Emmett then showed him to the last room, a small bedroom made into a fitness room. It had a treadmill and a small home gym.
"This is what it looks like: my fitness room. I have to keep myself in shape somehow, and running outside is kind of out of the question," Emmett laughed. "So, that's all to my apartment. It's not huge, but it's definitely functional and I love it," Emmett said.
"It's quite nice," Gavin agreed. "What's that room at the end of the hall?"
"Oh, I almost forgot. That's my practice room," Emmett answered, opening the door. The far wall was all windows, but in the middle sat a sizeable Steinway grand piano.
"Wow." Gavin admired, then looked at the time. "Well, I have to get going, because the restaurants are probably swamped. Thank you for showing me around. I'm actually a little excited to be living somewhere new."
"You're quite welcome," Emmett replied, walking to the door and opening it. "Have a great night, Gavin."
"You do the same," was what came out of Gavin's mouth while he was thinking, 'Oh, I will since I've seen you.' He stepped out into the hall, went down the stairs and entered the lobby.
"You take care of Emmett, Mr. Adams. He's a keeper, I'll have you know," Cecelia said to him as he crossed the marble-tiled floor, winking.
"In the short period of time that I've known him, Cecelia, that has become quite obvious to me," Gavin replied, smiling. "And it's Gavin, Cecelia. Gavin."
"Alright, Mr. Adams. Have a good evening, Mr. Adams," she smiled back. She held the door as he exited and walked down the sidewalk into the night. She was surprised when she turned around and Emmett was approaching her.
"Emmett, what are you doing?"
"Well, Cecelia, I figured that you could use some company tonight. Or maybe it's just that I could use some company tonight," Emmett answered.
"Well, alright. Come on outside and take a seat on the bench. I can sit with you for a while, but I have to get home to Pete before one in the morning this time," she said, helping him to their favorite chatting spot. "So, where'd you find him?" she asked bluntly. Emmett laughed heartily.
"You remember Cassidy, don't you?"
"Mmhmm. It's hard to forget one like her. She's a beauty and a brain, even a little odd at times. She fits you perfectly. Well, if you were . . . nevermind."
"Yes, I know, we'd probably be married if I batted for that team, so to speak. Well, anyways, he's been a friend of hers for years now, and we've just never met. Finally we did, because he was interested in moving in when Matt moves out in a few days."
"Well, you be careful. Boys like him are dangerous," she warned.
"Out of curiosity, how'd you figure me out?" Emmett questioned.
"Honey, I've been around the block. I can tell when something's a little different. And, like you said: if you were straight, you and Cassidy would be married, and happy even. I remember there was a time when she had the look in her eyes that I see in yours right now for Mr. Adams."
"Is it that obvious? And, wait, Cassidy did?"
"Yes, she did. But I knew it would pass. She's an intelligent young woman and she will find someone. And yes, it's quite obvious to me, darling, but not to him, don't worry. When you're around him, you have yourself in a little shell." Cecelia paused for a moment, putting her hand on his knee. "You should try letting your guard down a little bit," she told him gently. "You could use someone."
"That's the last thing I should do, Cee," Emmett said. "That last thing I need is someone to get involved with, and then break my heart. He's probably not interested in me, anyways. I mean, come on, I'm blind."
"First of all, your blindness means nothing if he really felt something for you. But secondly, you should work that out with him. You'll have plenty of time to do so, seeing as he's going to live with you. He seems grounded enough that, if something falls out, so to speak, he won't run. He'll keep living there and be the friend you need."
"I know that; I was able to tell when I met him. He seems great." Emmett took a few breaths. "He's attractive, isn't he?"
"Oh, honey, he's one of the finest pieces of meat I've ever set my eyes on, if I'm not being too subtle," she responded good-naturedly. Emmett gave a small chuckle. "He's a few inches taller than you, he has blond hair cut short and tousled neatly, and he has a body to die for, which I'm sure you can tell when you feel him up every time he leads you somewhere." Emmett laughed again. His face turned to a stony expression just moments afterwards.
"Cee, I don't know if I can do this," Emmett said softly, leaning forward to rest his arms on his legs.
"Sure you can. I know you, and you are strong enough to get through anything."
"Thanks, Cee. I don't know what I'd do without your sage advice," Emmett said.
"Now, I don't know about my advice being sage, but I'm here for you," she responded. "Let's get you back upstairs."
Emmett walked up, got in bed, and fell asleep, exhausted.
Emmett wiped the tears from his eyes and applauded as he heard the minister give Matt permission to kiss his bride. Cassidy had sat beside him, holding his hand, and Gavin sat on the other, restraining himself from grabbing Emmett's other hand while kissing the tears away. Once the recessional music had ended, the three got up and headed inside. Dinner passed quickly, and Emmett was enjoying himself immensely. Finally, the music started, and Cassidy pulled him up.
"Come on, stud, we need to go dance," she ordered. Gavin watched them as they gyrated, waltzed, and swing-danced according to the music. They were definitely the two most talented dancers up there, but once again, Gavin found himself absorbed in Emmett. Gavin had moved in with Emmett two days earlier. He was tired; he had sat on the edge of his bed, staring across the hall, watching Emmett sleep for the past two nights. He knew it seemed a little creepy and a lot cliché, but Emmett was so beautiful and at peace when he slept. It gave him a sort of consolation.
"Hey, you look a little bored," a voice said, rousing him from his daydreaming. Gavin looked up to see Suzanne. "And lonely. I didn't miss your transfixion."
"Hey you. Why aren't you dancing with your lucky bride?" he joked, pointing to Matt. She laughed.
"Well, first of all, he's a bad dancer, and secondly, he's on his way to the little boys' room. Want to dance?"
Gavin got up and danced for a while, his eyes still wandering over to Cassidy and Emmett. Finally, Suzanne turned his head back to her and looked him in the eyes.
"You are a mess," she shouted over the music. "Go dance with him!" Suzanne walked over to Cassidy and yanked her away from Emmett. Emmett was slightly panicked at the loss of contact, until he heard Cassidy's voice.
"I'm getting a drink with the bride," she told him quickly as a slow song came on. Emmett laughed and stood there, unsure of what to do. He was clearly unable to just find his way back to his seat. Gavin saw his apprehension and walked over, taking a deep breath.
"Hey, stranger," he said, putting a hand on Emmett's shoulder and bending his head down to talk into Emmett's ear. "May I dance with you?" Emmett heard Gavin's voice shaking as he asked this, and couldn't help the smile that crept onto his face.
"I would like that," Emmett said back, feeling the side of Gavin's face brush against his. The feeling was thrilling. Emmett put his arms around Gavin's, pulling him closer and putting his hands on the back of Gavin's shoulders. He felt Gavin's hands stall awkwardly on the sides of his hips, then finally move around him to his lower back. Gavin looked down at Emmett's face, observing the happiness behind his eyes.
"I'm sorry I'm so bad at this," Gavin apologized.
"You're not bad at it," Emmett responded. "You just need to be taught how."
"Well, you're a good teacher. I'd be flattered to have you teach me."
"I'm flattered that you'd let me," Emmett responded, his head reeling at the thought of dancing with Gavin again. He rested his head on Gavin's shoulder as they swayed slowly.
"Look at them," Cassidy said to Suzanne and Matt. The three of them looked at Emmett and Gavin, awkwardly dancing, exchanging a few words, then settling into each other. Matt looked back at Cassidy and saw her smirking quite smugly.
"You fiend," he grinned. "You knew."
"Listen, I didn't do anything. I just introduced two friends to one another. They did all the work," she smirked again.
"Yeah, but you had a hunch," Suzanne accused.
"Me? Meddle with something like this? Never." Cassidy retorted sarcastically, taking a sip of her champagne.
"Come on, you," Suzanne said to Matt. "It's time for us to make our exit."
"We'll finally get to the best part of these shenanigans," Matt smiled mischievously. Suzanne slapped him lovingly on the arm and they walked away, hand-in-hand. Cassidy said her goodbyes, then returned her attention to Emmett and Gavin. Another waltz had come on, and she saw Emmett patiently trying to teach Gavin what he could.
"Put your feet in front of mine, like this," Emmett told Gavin, lightly grabbing his leg and positioning it. Emmett straightened and put his hand on Gavin's shoulder. "Your posture is horrible right now. I know you sit with good posture, because every time I sit with you, your back is as straight as a board."
Gavin straightened up just as the piece ended. The two stood uncomfortably as the next song started. Cassidy approached them and led them away.
"Come on, you two, let's head out," she told them.
"What time is it?" Emmett asked.
"Eleven, but I have to be to work tomorrow by six. So, I don't know about you two, but I'm going to split."
The three walked outside together, through the parking lot.
"So," Cassidy continued, "did you two have a nice dance lesson?" She looked at them and saw both men blush. "I'll take that as a 'yes'."
Cassidy left as Emmett got in Gavin's car.
"Was she okay to be driving?" Emmett asked.
"Yeah, she was fine. She didn't even finish her glass of champagne, and she ate a big dinner," Gavin answered, starting the car. The twenty-minute drive home was quiet until Gavin had parked and they were walking into the building.
"Thank you for dancing with me, if you could call it that," Gavin said quietly. "No one has ever done that with me before."
"I can tell," Emmett teased, then becoming serious. "You're quite welcome." They walked in the doors of the building to be greeted by a good-humored Cecelia and Pete.
"Well, if it isn't Emmett and Mr. Adams. Why, you two make a snazzy sight."