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Isabella Gray

What makes you different makes you dangerous

0 · 959 views · located in Smithbrook

a character in “Beautiful Lies”, as played by Isabella Sophia Gray



Image"We all have our Secrets"
{Like I do |Witt Lowry}

Name: Isabella Sophia Gray
Nicknames: Bella//Izzy//Sophie//Bee
Age: 22// TwentyTwo
Gender: Female
Sexuality: Bisexual
Ethnicity: White American

"I am who I am. Take it or leave it."
{ Move on | Witt Lowry}

Isabella has porcelain skin, bright ocean blue/green eyes and long, healthy, elaborately styled auburn red hair. She has a long face with friendly eyes, a small nose, defined cheek bones,and full pink lips. She has a small birthmark on her right shoulder blade.A very noticeable feature is her white, sparkly teeth. She is 5'3" and has a small muscular build.Her hair falls in natural curls down her back. She rarely every straightens it and makes sure it is always perfectly styled. She has always cared about her appearance and what others think about her.Some say her eyes are a bright alaskan ocean blue color. But they change frequently due to the lighting surrounding her. If you look closely there are golden specks surrounded by her captivating innocent eyes.Isabella has always been on the shorter side but now she is at a healthy height of Five-foot-Three// She has a small frame but she is very toned considering she is a dancer. She weights 119 Pounds.
Isabella was abused as a child. Her Ex boyfriend tried to kill her because he thought she was cheating on him. She has multiple scars on her body from where he tortured her by cutting her just enough so she would bleed slowly.She is immune to the bites.

"Strong is the new Pretty"
{ Take Care | Somo & Cody Tarpley}

Isabella has always had the urge to be nice to every and anyone.Yeah, she gets sick of it pretty quickly, but she tends to keep her true emotions hidden away, and isn't the easiest book to read.
Always true to her word, if she breaks a promise, she will go to great lengths to fix her mistake, making her seem gullible.
Although appearing as the beautiful gullible girl, she is quite smart, and is simply observant.
However, she does have a dark side.
When she's angry, she's furious.
When she hates something/someone.
When upset, she lashes out, be them friend or foe, and frequently says things she cannot take back.
Isabella has an heir of confidence and authority about her. She doesn’t excessively seek or strive for attention but she is the girl that isn’t afraid to speak her mind or do whatever she wants. When she has a job she gets it done, nothing can get in her way.
When you think about Isabella the words stubborn and strong willed come to mind. When Isabella makes up her mind there is nothing that can change it. She is determined to do what she wants when she wants it. She trusts her own instincts and no one else’s. Isabella is a very compassionate person. She takes others feelings to heart and adjusts her actions and personality accordingly.
⋆Dancing, From the young age of three Isabella has been dancing.
⋆Makeup, Isabella currently works in a high end makeup company producing her own makeup line.
↡Accident prone, Isabella is constantly tripping, falling and or hurting herself on accident.
↡ Temperamental, Once this fiery red head gets heated there is no stopping her.
↡ Stubborn, Isabella is very difficult to deal with.
↡ Blunt, She is to the point and doesn't sugar coat anything.
She is a noticeably jumpy person. She's easily startled and can't stand when people sneak up, surprise or prank her.
▸ Arachnophobia, freezing up just when she sees a spider or anything bearing a close resemblance to one
▸ Achluophobia, fear of darkness, she always has a light on.
▸ Amaxophobia,fear of riding in a car, Isabella got into a horrific car accident from her Ex boyfriend when he was drunk driving.
▸ Thanatophobia or Thantophobia,fear of death or dying.



"You and I will always have unfinished business. "
{ Pretty Hurts/Try/Who You Are | Louisa Wendorff}

Isabella was born and raised in rainy Seattle, Washington. Her parents, Lucas and Elizabeth had her brother Chris at a young age. Since her parents were so young when they had her brother they didn't have the money or support to raise him appropriately. Isabella on the other had was very fortunate by the time she was born. Her parents adored her more then ever because not only did they have support and financial assistance, they also always wanted a little girl.
Chris always tormented his little sister because of the huge age difference. Having a brother who is 8 years older then you is very challenging. Chris tormented Isabella since the age of 6. When their parents would go on their "Date Night" which was every Friday evening Chris would have to watch Bella. Instead of watching his little sister he would put the dogs bed in the grocery closet and put her in there. Isabella would be left in the cold dark room for hours until her parents would get home. Isabella's parents never knew what her older brother would do to her.
Isabellas love for dancing and music occurred at the young age of three. Her mother was a beautiful ballet dance and she wanted Bella to follow in her footsteps.
One rainy day in December Isabella was in the car with her father on their way to dance class. Isabella had a cold and her mother told her not to come to class today. Isabella insisted and convinced her dad to drive her. At the time Isabella was thirteen. While on their way to the studio it started to pour. Isabella always found comfort in the rain. As she was looking out the window she started singing along to the radio her father looked over at her and turned the music up trying to cheer her up. As they started to sing louder her father looked over to her again, right at the moment a truck came barreling down the road. The driver (who was driving on two hours of sleep) started to swerve on the ice road and struck the car on her fathers side. He died on impact. Isabella had a couple of scratches and bruises but she was okay. Since the accident her mother and brother blamed her for what occurred and the death of her father.
Isabellas mother Elizabeth was very abusive after her husband passed. She drank heavily and fell into a deep enraged depression. She would bully Isabella and belittle her until she turned 16. At the age of 16 Isabella met a man named Stephan. He was perfect in her eyes and she was "In love". As the yearss went by Isabella noticed how possessive and aggressive Stephan was getting with her. Isabella came home one day receiving an alerting message form him saying it was very important. Isabella rushed home from work and saw Stephan sitting on his bed with a kitchen knife in his hand. The details of the torture have become cloudy in her mind. Her brain trying to shield her from her horrific past. She has been on her own ever since.

Image"We look up at the same starts, and see such different things."
{ Closer |The Chainsmokers ft. Halsey}


Face Claim:
Jaclyn Hill


So begins...

Isabella Gray's Story


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Callum Wilcox Character Portrait: Alex Holmes Character Portrait: Gemma Wilcox Character Portrait: Sage McQueen Character Portrait: Alphonsine Bernadette Cunningham Character Portrait: Castiel O'Connor
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dialogue: #02857e | outfit: here

Alex pulled a face as he looked his reflection up and down. His shirt and trousers just seemed to make him look scrawny, and his hair was a mess- well, it wouldn't lie in the exact mess he wanted it to. He honestly would have rather stayed in the hotel room until it was time for his flight home- but this was a memorial service for Lisa. He couldn't believe she was dead. She hadn't just been popular- she'd been genuinely loved by so many people. She tutored those who struggled with school. She'd been a member of every committee going and had so often been the reason they hadn't descended into chaos. She was the one who paired up with the weird kid in the class so they wouldn't be alone or singled out by a teacher. She'd tracked down Alex after he moved away and had actually kept in contact with him- or, rather, kept messaging him, telling him about her day, and not expecting a response. And, eventually, he had messaged back.

But now, she was gone. With the police enquiry, the funeral had felt strange- nobody meeting anyone else's eyes, polite small talk the only conversation anyone made. The funeral had been strange, a mere formality. But this was voluntary, something the family genuinely wanted to do to celebrate her life. It wasn't anything religious- just something to remember her by. Had it been any other event, he would have stayed home. But not this.

His unsatisfactory appearance would have to do. Besides, most of the people there had seen him worse. He wasn't exactly the picture of health, but he'd been a hell of a lot worse the last time they'd seen him. Painfully underweight, barely able to function when sober, self-destructive, miserable... Well, okay, that last one hadn't changed that much.

He shoved his phone, hotel key, and wallet into his pocket, picking up a jacket and leaving the hotel room. As he headed for the venue, it occurred to him everyone else who could be here. Cas, Oliver, Callum... Callum. Alex still didn't like to think about him all that much. Callum had broken him and had the guts to say it was for the best. And the worst thing was, Alex had still loved him. He'd buried himself in self-destruction, because Callum had been the only person to ever stop him from completely derailing. Alex's therapist had told him multiple times that closure would probably do him good, that reaching out to Callum might be for the best. Alex had disagreed. That said, if he ran into Callum... Well, they'd just need to see what would happen. Alex was in town for another while anyway, until his parents got back from their last minute holiday abroad.

The room was starting to fill up fast, even though the service itself didn't start for another hour. There was to be a reception before and after to encourage the memory of Lisa- although Alex wasn't planning on sticking around for too long after, especially if there were a lot of familiar faces attending. He kept his head down, taking a leaflet and heading to one corner. He just wanted this to be over already.


dialogue: #faa0fa | outfit here

They'd rebuilt the house. Somebody else lived there now and had made it their house, unrecognisable from Ellie's childhood home. Ellie was incredibly glad for that much. It made coming home so much easier- not at all like being at home. It was the town she'd grown up in, but without the painful reminders. Or, at least, most of them.

The scars wrapping around Ellie's torso were so easy to hide. They could be covered with just a dress. The fainter ones on her arms were slightly harder to cover, requiring her to wear a jacket. But even still, as she looked herself up and down, she could have easily been her old self. It was so easy to pretend that nothing had ever happened. Maybe everyone had forgotten and moved on. Maybe she could fly home in a week or two and leave this all behind for good. That thought was comforting.

As she left her hotel, she scanned the streets, watching for a familiar face. Then again, most of them were probably already at the service. She wanted to go, but she didn't want to deal with people. She was still going to be there almost an hour before the actual service or whatever it was began, but she wasn't intending on being all that social.

Nobody approached her in her short journey to the venue, something she was glad about. It was already pretty busy when she got there, which allowed her blend into the crowd pretty easily.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Callum Wilcox Character Portrait: Alex Holmes Character Portrait: Gemma Wilcox Character Portrait: Sage McQueen Character Portrait: Alphonsine Bernadette Cunningham Character Portrait: Castiel O'Connor
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Dettie did not want to be here. This place held too many painful memories. That bench over there, she ate ice cream with here mother on the bench. Under that big tree Dettie had her first kiss. God. Being back was so strange. Every time she walked past a corner she expected Cas to swagger up to her, grinning his cocky grin. When she passed her old school Dettie could of sworn she saw Gemma waving at her.

It was too hard being here. She'd stay a week, maybe a week and a half then she'd go back to Australia. It would all go back to normal and Dettie could live her dull, boring life.

Entering the reception Dettie realized that maybe she wasn't dressed correctly. Wearing a leather jacket, skin tight ripped jeans and a shirt low enough to show the tattoo on her collar down wasn't really funeral material.


She picked up a leaflet, skimming it. Hopefully her appearance made people leave her alone. If an old friend came up and tried to talk to her it would be so awkward. Dettie didn't exactly have any friends in Australia and Cas was the only one she ever kept in contact with.

And if Gemma or Lina wanted to talk to her...well Dettie couldn't be held responsible for what she'd do. Seeing the two girl, women now she supposed, she fell in love with would shatter her whole not caring demeanor.

Keeping a careful eye out Dettie sat down on one of the free chairs. She flipped her sunglasses down, hoping they'd hide her face a bit.

A few hours then she could return to her hotel. She could do this.



Gavin didn't like funerals. He didn't like chatting about his dead friends to strangers. And he definitely didn't like leaving Patty alone. But he wouldn't want Patty to be here. She was barely five and did not need to see a bunch of stuff adult crying around a dead body. Plus none of his old friends even knew had a kid, excluding Lina. He couldn't lie to his cousin even if he wanted to.

He had put on a suit for this and was really regretting it. The tie was digging into his throat and the dress shoes were uncomfortable. At least the venue looked good. Gavin would hate for Lisa to be remembered in a crappy place. She deserved more than that

He crossed his legs, drumming his fingers on his knee. It was getting crowed now. What time was it? Gavin glanced down at his watch and wondered how Patty was doing in daycare.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Callum Wilcox Character Portrait: Alex Holmes Character Portrait: Gemma Wilcox Character Portrait: Sage McQueen Character Portrait: Alphonsine Bernadette Cunningham Character Portrait: Castiel O'Connor
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#, as written by tigerz
00000S A G E 0 M C Q U E E N 00000000000000000|000000000000000000000 J A S P E R 0 M C Q U E E N

[ H E X C O D E ]
8888FF 0 | 0 999999

[ O U T F I T ]
Outfit 0 | 0 Outfit

[ S E C R E T ]
0PTSD 0 | 0 Escort

They were running late. Though it really shouldn't have been a surprise considering Sage was knocked out drunk from smiley face blue pill and Captain Morgan rum combination. Jasper of course had been the one to clean her up though he did give her a rude awakening with a surprise cold shower which ended with Sage waking up swinging like she did every time he did this to her. Sage hated this but Jasper did mean well. She hardly ever slept and it was a miracle she managed to get more sleep than Jasper. She did comply when Jasper told her to get ready since she was sober for the time being to know that the events leading up to today had been tough on her younger brother.

It'd been a long couple nights for Jasper. He'd been booked by his Madam to accompany and older and distinguished gentleman for the evening. It wasn't entirely bad. He preferred his older customers with deeper pockets since they always seemed to spoil him and tip well. The man took him out for the night to attend a business type gathering which wasn't Jasper's first. He'd been shown off like a piece of arm candy so the man wouldn't appear single and finished the night off with his usual duties for his customer that always enjoyed booking him for such events. Once his job was finished, he went home at an ungodly hour that was normal in the city of New York before Sage as always since she was out partying and taking God knows what with her 'friends'.

The next day, Jasper had taken the liberty of packing for him and his older sister before heading to his school to inform his teachers of his short absence. He finished his day off by informing his Madam of his departure and getting a bonus of sorts by doing what he does best... Sleeping with her. The two had a rather inappropriate relationship between boss and employee. Jasper wasn't a fan of it but it gave him extra money in his pocket for the trip. Sage of course spent her time drinking and stealing from his stash of dope before Jasper got home to slip a sleeping pill into the drink he poured for her just so she'd hopefully pass out and make the flight back home peaceful and it worked.

After arguing back and forth over how to dress for the funeral, Jasper finally gave up and let Sage show up with him at the funeral in their expensive rental car. Jasper was dressed formally his own stylish flare added to it while Sage showed up wearing a not so appropriate t shirt and jeans with a flannel over it and a beanie to cover her wet hair that probably hasn't been washed for a week. They came in quietly... Well, Jasper did while Sage stumbled in having to grip her brother's arm to steady herself thanks to the drinks she was sneaking from her flask in her back pocket.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Callum Wilcox Character Portrait: Alex Holmes Character Portrait: Gemma Wilcox Character Portrait: Alphonsine Bernadette Cunningham Character Portrait: Castiel O'Connor Character Portrait: Ellie Powell
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0.00 INK

0000A L E X 0 H O L M E S 00000000000000000|00000000000000000000000 C A L L U M 0 W I L C O X

#02857e 0 | 0 #004d00

alex 0 | 0 callum

talk me down | troye sivan

He knew that he'd said he'd go, but now, he was regretting that. The memorial service had exhausted him enough as was. The thought of having to deal with any more people was exhausting him enough as it was. He'd asked Callum to pick him up, but his phone had died at exactly the same moment he'd decided that. And now his phone was taking ages to turn back on. Callum would probably be here before Alex even got around to texting him. Just perfect. He'd hardly moved from the bed except to retrieve his sketchpad from his backpack that was acting as a storage for everything that wasn't clothes. The room wasn't that untidy, but it certainly wasn't an image of cleanliness. Paper scattered the floor where he'd ripped out pages that he hadn't been happy with. He couldn't put what he wanted to onto paper, and that was frustrating him a little. So, eventually, he'd just decided to start attempting to catch up on some sleep and pretend that everything that was happening... wasn't.

Callum took a deep breath as he stuck the key into the ignition of his 2011 Ford Bronco and turned it. The engine revved to life, growling hungrily for the open road. He reached out an pat the dashboard. "Sorry, pal. No roadtrips just yet. We have to go get Alex." He eyed the camera bag he had sitting in the shadows of his trunk and thought he should take it to the outing. Get pictures of Gemma, Lina... Alex.

He shook his hand and put the car in drive. He wasn't sure he wanted Alex to know about his new hobby. Not until he was any good at it. Alex was always incredibly talented art wise. Callum couldn't even draw a straight line to save his life. Even his hearts looked strange. He occasionally watched his phone as the GPS guided him to the hotel Alex was staying in. Guilt ate at the lining of his heart as he waited. It got to the point that Callum groaned and put his face in his hands, regret pressing down on his shoulders like weights. If only he had stayed. If only he had tried harder... but he had tried. He had done everything he could think of, everything the internet said to do, but Alex wouldn't listen. But he recovered, right? Yeah because you leaving pushed him over the edge. Callum stuck a hand out to lay into the horn and remembered at the last second that he was outside a hotel and not Alex's house. The car gave a soft honk causing head to turn in his direction. He lifted his hands apologetically and sat back in his seat with a sigh. He grabbed his phone from its mount on the dashboard and typed out:

Dude, we're going to be late Erased it. Wrote You gonna come down before I grow old and die alone?. Erased it. He groaned. Why was this so hard? He apologized. Alex knew how sorry he was. Maybe it was that Alex hadn't exactly said he had forgiven him. And Alex hadn't specified just what... they were exactly. Everytime his mind reverted back to before, it felt too easy. He needed to tone it down, but toned down didn't make him Callum. He tried again.

O prince up in his tower high cometh down lest we beest late for the ball. or I kicketh the bucket of old age. Sent.

The first Alex knew of his phone turning on was when it buzzed with a text. He rolled over, retrieving the phone. His stomach squeezed on seeing Callum's name. He read the text, a small smile crossing his lips at the message, but guilt stole it from his face.

Sorry, dude, really not feeling up to it. It was too brief, but what else could he say? Elaborate on his depression? Say how he'd just spent the whole afternoon asleep or drawing or staring at the ceiling? It wasn't necessary, so he wasn't going to share. He wasn't going to guilt-trip Callum. He felt bad enough for bailing on him.

Below, Callum's phone gives a happy chirp as his phone received a message. Despite the sounds, Callum's face wasn't happy. He opened the message and he sighed. He rubbed his eyes with his thumb and forefinger and reread the message. Was it because of him? Because he was the one giving Alex a ride? Maybe he could text Cas... No. If they were going to fix things. It was going to be Callum. But that didn't mean Callum wouldn't offer.

Come on, Man. Don't do this. Is it me? I can text Cas if that would help. He was completely oblivious to the real reason for Alex's sudden distance of the situation, but he felt that if Alex didn't come down, Callum might never see him again. The ache for the open road was already settling in his chest. He wasn't sure how long he could stay in this stupid little town that held so many secrets. He also wasn't sure which window was Alex's but he stared up into him as if willing his friend--his love if he was being honest--to look down. Rapunzel, Rapunzel, look out your tower. See the prince waiting for... many an hour?" He groaned. Poetry was never his strong suit.

He was watching his phone for the reply, knowing that it probably wasn't going to just be a simple reply. And, sure enough, when he read the message, he just ran a hand down his face. He couldn't even send a freaking text without hurting anybody.

No, it's not you. This morning just took it out of me, you know? He sent, staring at the screen and reading Callum's last message. He just wanted to see Callum face to face again. Here, they could talk it out again. They could talk it out in private.

This tower of mine has a lift, if you want to talk face to face. Third floor, room 347. He sent, locking his phone, but staying staring at the screen.

Callum was muttering about his lack of social skills under his breath as he waited for a reply. As soon as his phone chirped, he quickly unlocked it and read the message. His eyes read the words slowly at first and then reread them before practically jumping from his car and made his way inside. It took everything in him not to run to the elevator. As he waited, he typed a reply:

I suppose I can brave that metal beast. I better get a kiss at the top." No. No no. He erased that last part and just sent: I suppose I can brave that metal beast. They just started talking again. No need to fuck it up with his failure of a flirt. He bounced on his toes as the metal doors slowly slid open and he practically hopped inside. It was completely empty so he didn't need to worry about bothering people with his fidgeting.

The doors slid open again on the third floor and he quickly made his way to room 347. He found it and lifted his hand to knock. And dropped it. Stop being a baby He lifted his hand again, took a deep breath and knocked. He let one word escape his lips, a whisper that sounded like a shout in the quiet hall, "Alex?"

Callum's reply made him smile a little, and his eyes shifted from the screen of his phone to the door. A few moments later, the knock came. He got to his feet, casting an eye over the room. It suddenly seemed ridiculously untidy, but there wasn't much he could do about it. So he just ran a hand through his hair, and opened the door. "Hey," he said, standing back to let Callum in. "Sorry about the mess, I just... I meant to tidy up, but then I fell asleep and... yeah," he said, shrugging. God, this was so much more awkward than he'd imagined.

Callum's heart jumped when the door swung open revealing a lightly disheveled Alex. He looked like he had been sleeping before Callum had texted him. He stepped inside, his eyes sweeping about the room. It was a mess, but it wasn't any worse than the back of his Bronco. "Hey, don't sweat it. You should see the back of my truck." Was it a truck? It was definitely bigger than a car. It felt powerful like a truck... he was sticking with truck. "But what's with all the paper?" He knocked a wad of crumpled paper across the floor with his foot, landing next to a pile of shoes and a backpack bursting with clothes.

He smiled at Callum's response. They'd never been the tidiest pair, and it was kind of comforting to know that some things never changed. "Just... drawings that weren't going to work out. I was getting frustrated, hence why they're flung... literally all over the room," he admitted, running his hand through his hair again. He sighed. "Sorry for backing out, dude, I just... Like I said, I've been asleep all afternoon, and I still don't have the energy to go out and try and deal with people again. I'm just... constantly tired lately," he said. It wasn't a lie. He was telling the truth, and praying that Callum wasn't going to question it.

Callum smirked. Everything about Alex was still so... Alex it was almost like he had never left. Like Alex hadn't fallen deeper and deeper into a pit. Almost. He tried to smile more, echo his friend's from before, but it was forced and weak so he dropped it. "You alright? It sounds like you need caffeine, dude. Not more sleep." Not that he had said he would be doing more sleep. "Plus being around people might be good for you." He wasn't sure he could go if Alex didn't. He pushed the thought down. It was selfish and not how he needed to think to get Alex back.

Was he alright? That was the million dollar question. Alex just forced a grin. "Caffeine doesn't help all that much, to be honest. Trust me, I've tried." God, everything felt so forced with him. All he wanted was to sleep and everything else was just forced, just a mask to get him through life. "And I don't know- I was fine until I went out this morning and then bam, exhaustion. Do you really want me falling asleep on you?" He asked, half jokingly. Considering everything they'd been through, this felt... all wrong. Like small talk and nothing more, all while they pretended it was fine. When it wasn't.

Callum nodded as he listened, thinking of anyway to help his love--his friend. "Sounds like you're not getting enough sleep." He looked up at Alex, his eyes worried. "Do you want to talk about it? About what happened? I mean either between us, or rehab, or whatever. Sometimes.. talking helps." How many times had he heard those words from Gemma as he shut her own, too afraid to tell her of his business... of what Alex really meant to him. He chuckled again. "I mean, if you did fall asleep on me, it's not like I would mind."

Alex decided against saying that he was sleeping ten, eleven, twelve hours a night, and then napping during the day. According to his therapist, that was normal, and that it would pass as he recovered. But that wasn't happening just yet. Probably because he wasn't sticking to all of her advice.

He shook his head as Callum asked if he wanted to talk. "I... I don't know if I can. I'm still trying to get my own head around it. Coming back here, seeing everyone..." Seeing Callum... "It's all kinda brought up the memories and the feelings and... I can't deal with it right now, Callum. Especially because the only thing that brought us here is someone dying." It could have been him. It was only luck, really, that he was still alive.

Callum took a step towards Alex, sick at the lost look on his face. "Nothing is going to happen to us, Alex. What happened to Lisa was an accident." He took a deep breath. "You're getting help right? What does your.. doctor? Therapist say?"

Alex didn't know what he wanted to do. Step closer to Callum? Step away? He wanted to both, but he didn't want to do either. So he stayed where he was, ignoring the sudden pressure on his chest. He didn't want to talk about this. He didn't want to talk about his problems, not to Callum.

"It's just... standard for a recovering addict. She says that if I wasn't an addict, I'd probably be on meds, but that she thinks I'd resort to abusing them." He wasn't going to say the word. Depression. He didn't want pity, he just wanted Callum to leave so he could go back to sleep and forget that it had ever happened and just... not leave the room until he was flying back. He wasn't going to tell Callum, but he agreed with the therapist. If anyone handed him anything stronger than paracetamol, he'd be downing it in the hope of taking the edge off.

At the word "addict" Callum winced. He feared Alex had been that bad. In fact, he knew it was true, but didn't want to accept it. Without permission, a memory surfaced. Alex's eyes wide and distant as he talked about whatever his drug addled brain was thinking. At first, Callum laughed with him. Even considered joining him if he wasn't thinking about how much Gemma would kill him. Then things went downhill quickly. Their inventory was depleting more rapidly than they could sell it and Callum, for a long time, refused to believe Alex was dipping into the stash. He had been wrong. He agreed with the therapist. He wasn't going to say it though. "Alex, you need to get out of this room. Some fresh air, some laughs. Then you can come here and crash or... He paused, his brain crying out Don't do it! "You could come back to the motel with me. Crash there. That way you're not alone." And I'm not alone anymore.

No. No, Callum wasn't getting it. He couldn't actually face it. The thought of heading out to a party, where everyone else would be talking about how great their life was and how they'd gotten everything they'd wanted. And then they'd look at him and he'd either have to tell more lies or tell the truth and deal with their pity and their general disappointment. He didn't want to deal with any of them. He wanted Callum to stay here with him and just chill and forget about the outside world and all their problems, but Callum wasn't going to let him do that. Callum sounded like his freaking therapist, preaching to him when he had no idea what he was going through.

He took a step back, running a hand through his hair. Being back here, having Callum talking to him like this- it was like he was back then, back when he'd either be high or so painfully sober, when everyone was telling him what to do and what was right for him when they had no idea what he needed. "No, Callum, I can't." He couldn't even say any more than that. He couldn't elaborate. He could feel the frustration starting to build already, but ignored it, trying to suppress it. If there was one person he didn't want to lose his temper with, it was Callum.

Callum froze. He knew that look. The fear that only disappeared when he was shorting shit or shooting up. He took a step back. He needed to fix it. How could he fix it? He looked around the room, trying to think of something quick. Before Alex exploded and the radiation would hit him right in the chest. He kicked a ball of paper when he took a step back and an idea snapped into place. "Show me what you're working on?" He wasn't sure how Alex would react to the change of topic. He knew Alex probably thought he was probing and being an ass and he would rather face his reaction to that request than make the gap between them bigger. He still wished he had the strength--and permission that's very important--to cross the room and kiss him. His hands shook with the need, but he stuffed them in his pockets.

Alex forced himself to take a deep breath. And another. He was fine. He was okay. He wasn't going to have to leave just yet. Callum wasn't leaving. He nodded once at Callum's request. Then again as he moved back to the bed, retrieving the sketchpad from the bedside locker. Another deep breath. He flicked through the sketchpad, landing on the draft he was happiest with. His therapist had been encouraging him to put what he was feeling onto paper, but Alex had never been good with words. So he drew. Sometimes he just drew what was in front of him. But he drew more than that too.

He sat down on the bed, staring at the drawing. His mind picked out the flaws and he wanted to rip it up. But instead, he looked up at Callum, forced a smile, and patted the bed beside him. He looked back down at the drawing, trying to see it for what it was. He'd never seen the Grim Reaper as a bad spirit. Somebody who was just trying to do what he was supposed to, but who was portrayed as evil for that. He wondered if the Grim Reaper was an outcast too. So he'd drawn the Grim Reaper in human form. Hollow, gaunt cheeks, but bright eyes that shone from even beneath his cloak. Hands that could carry a human as easy as they could take their hand. Like him but also nothing like him. He slid it across to Callum.

Callum waited. For and explosion. For a smle. When he didn't get either, he still considered the diversion a success. He watched as Alex pulled a sketchpad from the bed and began to flip through the pages. He waited until he was given the okay to cross the room and sat beside Alex. There was a small forced smile that reminded him of all the times Alex smiled apologetically after a bad episode. He gave a small smile back, just as he would before and took the picture. His jaw dropped. It was obvious it was modeled a little after Alex, but at the same time it was a totally different person. Not a person but a concept: The Grim Reaper.

The detail was amazing, though. Almost like a photograph. He brushed his fingers over the page, careful not to smudge it. He could feel where Alex had erased and reworked the picture, the dents from pressing harder with the pencil. He closed his eyes for a moment and pictured Alex working. He had seen his work in the past, but had definitely improved. And Callum couldn't help but be proud of him. He opened his eyes and grinned. "This is crazy good, Alex. You've gotten so much better." He looked up at Alex. "Not that you've needed to improve."

The smile that Callum's compliment produced was the first fully real smile that Alex had smiled in a while. "Thanks. Drawing is a great way to avoid my family," he said, shrugging a little. Was that too personal? No, not really. Callum had seen and heard all of his problems. This wasn't anything new.

"Listen, Callum, I'm sorry. Coming back and seeing everyone and... seeing you. It's tough. You know as well as I do that I could never really deal with my emotions all that well in the first place, and I've kinda got to learn to deal with it all over again. I get angry a lot and I get anxious a lot and... I'm afraid of losing everyone again," he admitted, not making eye contact. "I'm afraid of losing you again," he added, more quietly. "So a lot of the time I just feel like... it's better not to get close to begin with." God, his therapist was going to be proud of him when she heard what he was about to say. "But... it's not the same with you. I want things to go back to the way they were. I'm not easy to deal with, though, so if you don't want to... I understand." Wow, not only had he made a decision on what he wanted, he'd also admitted to it. He was on a roll.

Callum beamed when he saw Alex's smile. His real smile. "We all have our escapes." he replied with a shrug similar to Alex's. He saw the change in Alex right before he spoke and he listened, his full attention on him. He felt heat rise to his face when he said I'm afraid of losing you again. When he finished, Callum opened his mouth to speak, but nothing came out. The words hadn't formed yet, they were still lost in the words Alex had spoken.

His face heated and he stammered a bit, trying to get the words out. "I--You mean--We--" he took a deep breath. "Back to how things were, how?" He tilted his head slightly to the side, his eyes soft. His heart pounded in his chest in hopes of hearing what he needed to hear.

It was unusual that Alex could talk when Callum couldn't. Maybe the therapy was working after all. As he watched him, he was reminded exactly why he'd said what he had. He was tired of trying to deny it to himself. He still loved Callum, as much as he'd tried to persuade himself otherwise. So at Callum's question, he leaned across to kiss him.

Callum's pulse thundered in his ears as he waited for Alex to answer. Please Please Please It sang. Alex's blue eyes grew intense in a way that Callum recognized and before Alex even moved, he had his answer. He leaned forward as well, his hand coming up to cup Alex's cheek softly, his thumb gliding across his cheek bone. He paused, only for a moment, building the tension and then his lips met Alex's. It was as soft and warm as he remembered, this time without the tingling of drugs burning through Alex's veins. He held himself back from being too forceful--too passionate. Not for fear of hurting Alex, but so he could speak. He needed to make sure Alex understood something if they were to move forward.

"Alex," he whispered as he pulled back slightly, laying his forehead against Alex's. "I need you to understand something." He looked up into those blue eyes that held him captive since the day they met. "I meant what I said back at Lisa's..." he didn't finish it. Death had no place in their conversation. So instead he went around the word. "I'm not going anywhere. If you want me, you have me. I've learned what it's like to not have you and I don't want to taste that life again. I made a mistake and I'm sorry, but if you're taking me back. I'm not letting you go. I will always be here for you. In the way I never was before." He leaned his head down, his lips just barely touching Alex's. "I love you, Alex Holmes."

It was everything he had been waiting and hoping for. Everything he had remembered. His skin tingled where Callum touched it, like static electricity. Even when Callum pulled away, resting his forehead against Alex's, Alex could still feel the electricity. His hand rested around the back of Callum's neck, and he couldn't stop himself from smiling, even as Callum met his eyes. The idea of having Callum all to himself, without fear of losing him... Alex wasn't so scared any more. Having Callum this close made everything feel a little better.

"Good," he replied. "Because you're not getting rid of me," he said. At Callum's words, his smile just grew. "And I love you, Callum Wilcox," he said, before closing the slight distance between them to kiss Callum again. He'd forgotten how much he'd missed it. It was almost exactly like everything his doctor had told him to avoid, because it would just get him hooked again. And she was exactly right.

He pulled away, but not too far. He couldn't remember the last time he'd grinned this much. "Well, haven't we got a party to go to? I think I'll just about be able to manage it now that I have you," he said.

Callum felt heat running through his veins at Alex's kiss. He heard his words echoing in his ears. His heart was racing--fluttering really--in his chest. He desperately wished he had his camera so he could take a picture of this moment and hold onto it forever. There was a tingling sensation on the skin of his neck and his lips. Pretty much wherever his body met Alex's. When Alex pulled back he felt a grin take form on his face. The chuckle that bubbled up from his core was practically a giggle. He was drunk on Alex's kisses and high on his touch. How could Alex have prefered drugs to the feeling of this?

He looked up at his love from under his eyelashes, the action more effective now that he wore contacts instead of his glasses. "Party? What party?" he asked huskily. He chuckled again, laying his forehead against Alex's shoulder. "Man the party. I almost forgot about it. You really want to go?"

As Callum leaned his head against Alex's shoulder, Alex rested his head against Callum's. He'd missed being this close to somebody. Not just sex, just having this kind of physical contact. Just being near somebody like this. He ran a hand through Callum's hair as he talked about the party. "Well, we both said we were going," he said. "And I don't particularly want to have to try and answer the questions of what we did while we weren't there," he teased.

Callum closed his eyes, reveling in the feel of Alex's fingers in his hair. It was comforting and the warmth of being near him was making him sleepy. Alex's teasing snapped him out of the feeling. Callum growled and turned his head, kissing the skin of Alex's neck. "Don't tempt me." He sighed happily and pulled back. "You're right though. We said we'd be there and we should. You should change." He stood, pushing back Alex's hair from his face and giving his forehead a soft kiss. "I'll wait outside your door otherwise I might distract you and we'll never get out of here." he teased.

Once Alex was finished and had whatever he wanted to take with him, Callum took ahold of his hand, and lead him down to the Bronco where he grabbed his camera bag and set it at the space below Alex's feet. As he drove towards the gathering of old friends, he had one hand on the wheel and one hand intertwined with Alex's fingers. He smiled to himself and turned on the radio, singing along to whatever song was playing for the millionth time.

The feeling of Callum's lips on his neck sent shivers down his spine again. But then Callum pulled away, and Alex sighed a little, grinning at the forehead kiss and gentle tease. He changed quickly, the change of clothes helping him to feel somewhat normal again. He couldn't believe how well things had gone. He'd pictured an argument, him exploding at Callum over something small... and it had gone the opposite. It had gone exactly as he'd wanted it to go. That didn't seem to happen all that much.

The drive to the pre-arranged spot was just as good. He couldn't remember the last time he'd felt this... peaceful. Callum's fingers in his, Callum singing along to the radio... He wanted to say it was like the old days, but it wasn't. In the old days, he'd either be high and singing along with Callum or babbling about something strange, or trying to recover from a hangover or general low, when he wanted to ask Callum to stop singing, because he had a headache, but didn't, because he didn't want to let Callum know how bad he was feeling.

He got out of the car, taking the supplies he'd picked up on his way back from the service with him. It was only a short walk to the site, but it looked like everyone else was already there. "Sorry we're late, guys. My ten minute nap turned into a few hours."