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Fic: The Interview (part 5c)

Title: The Interview (Part 5c)
Author: nouveau_monday
Pairing: Noah/Luke
Rating: PG-13 (Language only)
Word Count: 1.7k
Summary: How dates go wrong.
Spoilers: This is completely AU for the boys. So yeah, any relation to the story line is minor. Facts I kept were the Colonel, Noah's mom, and Oakdale. Other characters resemble themselves, but everyone, by definition is not quite him/her self.
Disclaimer: As I said, this is AU. The characters belong to CBS and P&G and possibly others, but definitely not me. That is the real travesty of all of this.
Notes: This part had no beta. All mistakes are mine and mine alone.

Noah curls away, struggles to free himself from the arms around him. It doesn't matter how much he wants to stay. There is letting someone closer and then there is acknowledging weaknesses someone could use, exploit, abuse. "Let me go."

"I'm not holding you." Luke's voice is soft, patient.

"Your arm's around me. Other one is pushing at my back. I may not be used to attention like this but I'm not stupid." He tries to breathe, wishes he could remember the easy rhythm. The sound of his heart threatening to exit his body via his throat isn't helping.

"Easy, easy. In. One, two, three. Hold it. Out. One, two, three. Again. In. One, two, three."

Noah's voice hitches. Fresh tears burn behind his eyelids. "Fuck, fuck, fuck."

"Hey, no. Hush. You were doing fine. You were. Keep breathing. Please." Luke's fingers continue their circles against Noah's skin.

"Gotta sit up. Need water, air." Noah's lungs hurt like he's been swallowing glass shards. The room spins over him. He shifts to stuff his head between his legs. "So, umm," he talks to his toes. "I know I'm not all up on how kids these days date, but I'm thinking that having a date with a hooker who flirts with your BFF barista, takes you back to his apartment and then has a panic attack isn't the normal way of doing things."

Luke kneels behind Noah, his legs around his waist, pets his hair, the nape of his neck. "If I wanted normal, I'd be dating my BFF barista. And, no, just no. He fumbles a rub to Noah's shoulders, adjusts to sit next to him, bumps their knees together. "Want me to get you some water? Maybe an aspirin or something?"

Noah nods, afraid to speak. His heart thumps stupidly in his chest. Luke doesn't want normal. He dares to let hope bloom, before squashing it just as quickly.

Luke slips off the bed, catches his pants and does them back up. "Water, I'm guessing, is in the kitchen. Where would meds be?"

"Bathroom. Behind the mirror. Bottled water in the fridge. Soda also, if you want some. Beer, maybe." Noah exhales, inhales, listens to the pad of Luke's footsteps in the small studio apartment. He contemplates his refrigerator, what secrets it can reveal to Luke's. Two glasses, two plates, two bowls, one mug. Bottled water, bread, cheese, lettuce and tomato. Multi-vitamins, maybe. That was it. How depressing.

Noah hears the refrigerator open on its sticky hinges, but not close. Then silence. "You really are emptying out, aren't you?"

"What?" Noah can't fully make sense of Luke's words.

"You just don't seem to have a lot here. Thought maybe you were using stuff up so it wasn't hard to pack?" He comes back with two pills, a bottle of water and a warm washcloth. "Here, take these. There you go. Your breathing's back to normal, even though you're still pale. Lay down, okay. Put this on your forehead and close your eyes."

Noah doesn't want that, doesn't want to be the asshole who managed to fuck up the only date he's had in over seven years. "Don't want to," he manages to admit. "I'm sorry I screwed up. Maybe I can make it up to you? I don't know how, but I will."

"Don't be dumb. You're sick. I can stay. You didn't mean to get sick? Didn't plan it deliberately?"

"I don't do shit like that." Noah bristles. He hasn't faked illness since he lived with the Colonel.

"Easy, easy. It was mostly rhetorical. Promise. Hey, you think maybe Roth poisoned you?"

Noah laughs. "He loves you. Could be trying to bump me off."

"Shut up." Luke tugs Noah closer to him, pets his stomach beneath his shirt. "Did I mention earlier, I like the eyeliner. I would have thought I wouldn't. Don't like to think of you painting yourself for me like you paint yourself for them." He places a delicate kiss on Noah's temple. "I was wrong. You look hot."

"I wanted to," Noah whispers. "I wanted you to know you were worth it. More than just an interview. Someone," he swallows. "Someone I once knew told me it brought out my eyes, said it made me beautiful." Noah blinks back the damp salt that trails down his cheeks.

"You are beautiful." Luke wipes his thumbs under Noah's eyes. "And your breathing seems to have evened out completely. You want to try sleeping for awhile?"

"I'd rather go back to making out." Noah cringes at the petulance in his voice.

"Me too," Luke confesses. "But I like you breathing. I don't really want you dead. Necrophilia has never been my thing, y'know."

"Yeah, that's a kink even I'm not willing to do." Noah wrinkles his nose. "Can we, I mean, if you don't mind, can we not talk about death?" He bites his lip, does not think of anyone else. "My mom died. Did you know that? I don't really know what happened, but she's dead. Has been for sometime. Only, I think the woman I thought was my mom maybe wasn't. And that someone else was." He shakes his head.

"You don't have to tell me. If you don't want to," Luke rushes to assure Noah.

"It's not like that. I just don't know how to explain it."

"Is that part of what you need at WOAK?"

Noah nods. "Yeah. I've got some notes, got a theory, but I'm not sure how much of it fits. Oakdale is a weird little place. Big city and small town all at the same time. Trying to slot stuff in isn't easy." His lungs don't hurt, and his head isn't spinning. His ear echoes with the sound of Luke's heartbeat. "Still, you got professors, doctors, nurses, alleys and coffee shop. That's pretty much all I need to know. A school big enough not to notice when a stranger slips into lectures, but too dumb to swipe IDs is my kind of school."

Luke's choked breath reverberates in Noah's ear. "That's why I saw you in that class and you never came back? You were sneaking into a class? Wait, I don't get it. You like school? Why don't you just go back and get some sort of degree?"

Noah lurches out Luke's arms, stumbles out of bed. "Why don't I just go back? Just go back? like it's that fucking easy. I haven't been in school in years, fucking years. Haven't been there since I split from the Colonel. And you think it's easy?" He flails his arms, forces a safe distance between their bodies. "You don't know. You've been dancing around me, watching me work for months now. But look at me. Luke, look at me. I'm a whore. A whore who hasn't been in a school since ninth fucking grade when I ran away before I could be beat one more time. Ran away before I had to hear what real men do, what real men are, why I'm never, ever going to be one." He collapses to the floor on shaky legs, wraps his arms around his exhausted body. "Oh shit. Shit, I'm sorry. I'm sorry. Luke," he blinks teardrops off his eyelashes, gazes up at the beautiful embodiment of innocence frozen on his bed. "You have to go. Please." He crawls to the side of his bed, keeps his distance, but snatches at Luke's hands. Noah kisses each of his fingers, sucks at the sweet white chocolate taste that lingers. His throat burns. Shame rises in his throat, leaves him helpless, ripped open and raw.

"Noah." That same benediction Luke offered before spills effortlessly from his angelic lips.

"Don't do this to me. Don't see me like this. Not now, not yet. I want to see you again, want to know you, but, not ... not like this." Noah bites at his lip. "I don't know what you want, what you need, but I." He swallows. "I need to do this even slower. I've never wanted to not fuck something up so bad in my life."

Luke's almost dimples ease the ache in Noah's heart. "I'm worried about you. I didn't mean to imply anything about school. I'm sorry. I'd still like to know you, know your life, if you'll let me."

"I don't know how." Noah closes his eyes, prays to the dark of his eyelids. "I don't know how to do this."

"Shh," Luke slips a hand from Noah's, pets his hair. "Shh. I know. I can help you through this. Get a nap now. Get sleep. And I'll be back later. I'll come find you. Give me a text once you're off work. We'll meet back up. Make plans for WOAK." He doesn't wait for a response, kisses Noah's forehead. "Into bed, okay. That's good." He tugs up the covers over Noah's clothed body. "And really do it. Don't undersell yourself or me. Text me before you come home. I can meet you here. Any time. I want to be here."

Noah nods. Blood suffuses his face and won't leave. "You really want me too?"

"I do. Sleep now. Promise me. Sleep." Luke stands by his head until Noah's eyes flutter and shut. "Take care of yourself."

The next part is here.


( 36 comments — Leave a comment )
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Oct. 2nd, 2008 04:01 am (UTC)
That was so good, please dont make us wait for so long for the next chapter, you story make my day, the way you write....I
Oct. 2nd, 2008 04:02 am (UTC)
I have no words, it'S like raw emotion put on paper :)
Sorry for my english, it's not my native language, i'm french
Oct. 2nd, 2008 12:30 pm (UTC)
Re: ...
don't every apologize for your english. it made perfect sense. thank you so much.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 04:58 am (UTC)
Oh wow. First of all, how did you manage to finish this chapter when you had a remix to do? You sneaky devil, LOL. I really, really liked this. I have a strange predilection for "caretaker" scenarios like this, especially when the person in need of attention isn't weak, just scared and unsure. Noah has so much strength, and I think Luke sees that, and wants to help him find his way. I love that Noah isn't giving up on trying for "normal" and that Luke isn't running away either. That's a true connection. And this story isn't predictable, which is refreshing. Great job... can't wait to read more!
Oct. 2nd, 2008 12:35 pm (UTC)
I am a sneaky devil. It's part of my charm.

I really loved writing Luke as the caretaker, and I do think in my head he thinks of Noah as this skittish mystery and so he treats him a little bit like he would a scared horse.

I'm having fun with this. I like the wild ride of "hmm, what weird freak out can happen next?"

I think i'm going to write the next part in WOAK.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 08:52 am (UTC)
YOU UDATED, YOU UPDATED, YOU UPDATED!!! I'm sorry, just so excited. Oh goodness, you're trying to make me cry with all that's going on with my poor Noah! You know Ihave a soft spot for Noah! My heart just aches for him. Luke is so strong and he really wants him. I don't think Noah's ever truly been loved and this is freaking him out. Genuine care is such a new concept for him. And what's up with his mom???
Oct. 2nd, 2008 12:37 pm (UTC)
I did update! I did update! I did update!

The mom is part of the ever increasing throw-away plots that ATWT has mentioned and not followed through on. And I just won't say more than that. *grin* Gotta keep something back to make people curious.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 10:21 am (UTC)
God, Monday. I know I keep telling you this but I just am so in love with this whole world I don't even have words. I'm so SO happy and excited that you are starting it back up. I didn't realize how much I missed it.

The emotions in this are so real. So here. I'm not an emotional person - at all - but I FEEL when I'm reading this. My heart squeezes for Noah, breaks and one of these days you are gonna get me to cry I swear. There is so much to him. It fascinates me. He truly is such a strong and independent person and yet so much of him is such a scared little boy.

Noah nods, afraid to speak. His heart thumps stupidly in his chest. Luke doesn't want normal. He dares to let hope bloom, before squashing it just as quickly.

I love that at least now he is starting to let himself have the moment of hope with Luke, even if it still leaves.

"I wanted to," Noah whispers. "I wanted you to know you were worth it. More than just an interview. Someone," he swallows. "Someone I once knew told me it brought out my eyes, said it made me beautiful." Noah blinks back the damp salt that trails down his cheeks.

This? Broke me. Even more than the paragraph where he freaks about school (which I kinda wanted to quote as well but I love that whole thing and couldn't pare it down any). For some reason this held so much weight in my eyes. The fact that he wanted Luke to know he was more to him and the fact that his appearance was to feel beautiful, just, GOD.

"Noah." That same benediction Luke offered before spills effortlessly from his angelic lips.

I love this line. I love how it says so much in just Luke speaking Noah's name.

It's stupid how I want to quote it all, but I do. I should just stop and just say love this, love you and can't wait to see where else you take them. *kisses*

p.s. The mom thing has me intrigued.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 01:59 pm (UTC)
I didn't realize how much I missed it until I started up scribbling again and this poured out. I feel now like you offered me a challenge - to make you cry. Maybe when they break up? Or maybe when they don't break up? Or maybe when I figure out what's going to happen next? I love how you just get him.

I'm glad the mom thing has you intrigued i need to bounce some ideas off someone. You might be that person. *smooches*
Oct. 2nd, 2008 12:13 pm (UTC)
Again, I am completely happy that you have continued. I always know I’m going to be punched in the gut with the emotions, but from the second sentence…my heart was shattered.

There is letting someone closer and then there is acknowledging weaknesses someone could use, exploit, abuse.

I love that you’ve captured the essence of the guys. Noah is so scared and unsure and Luke is there, being reassuring. No matter what walls Noah puts up, trying to push him away, talk of normal, but Luke won’t budge. I love Luke for not budging.

The whole thing is so beautiful, with Luke worrying about Noah dressing up for him, but Noah reassuring that he wanted to put in the effort. Then Noah admitting that he wanted to make-out, so cute.

But then I broke again with Luke’s optimism. He just thinks Noah can go back to school and Noah demanding that Luke look at him. Gosh, my heart, which had been mending, shattered again.

And I love the honesty of this sentence… "I don't know how." Noah closes his eyes, prays to the dark of his eyelids. "I don't know how to do this." But I don’t think Luke knows either, and maybe they can know together?

Okay, I’ve gone long-winded again. But just know I loved it like all the other chapters and I’ll try to be patient until you decide to grace us with another installment.


Oct. 2nd, 2008 07:05 pm (UTC)
I love when you're long winded. It makes me all fluttery. Poor Luke, he's a bit clueless. Well intentioned, but clueless. I keep seeing this future fight between the two of them in my mind, and I'm hoping it's not going to go there, but it might. Still, in the end, Luke's a rock. And Noah deserves a rock.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 02:06 pm (UTC)
OMFG!! I am so excited that you are continuing this story. I LOVED this and can't wait to see what happens next.

Noah nods, afraid to speak. His heart thumps stupidly in his chest. Luke doesn't want normal. He dares to let hope bloom, before squashing it just as quickly.

Oh Noah! I love how we keep getting little glimpses of how tender and wounded and raw he is underneath the tough exterior. I love that he's falling in love with Luke already. I just have no words for how much I love this.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 07:04 pm (UTC)
Noah totally is falling in love with Luke. He can't help it. It's going to be interesting to see how it works out. I wish I knew.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 02:44 pm (UTC)
Monday, this is amazing. I think ladysonsie and Ali's said everything I wanted to say. But really, I love love how you are able to characterize these two and make us say, oh that's so Luke and that's so Noah, even though they're in a completely different Universe. And I feel so much for these two there - they're both broken in their own ways, I think, although in very different ways and varying degrees. Love seeing the different ways they're approaching the same situation, their different views. It's just perfect and gets me so involved. Much hearts. Looking forward to the mom bits and WOAK. :)
Oct. 2nd, 2008 06:06 pm (UTC)
thank you so much for stopping by to comment. I'm glad that who they are on the show comes out even in an AU. I tried really hard to make them at the core still be them, even if it's different. It's a relief to read that's working.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 03:08 pm (UTC)
You tease me! I see the icon of Reid and think, "yay! she's written a CM story!" But noooooooooo. :P
Oct. 2nd, 2008 06:04 pm (UTC)
I actually did start the next section of my CM fic. I haven't seen last night's episode yet, but i'm betting it will make me perk right up and babble out something.

i'm in desperate need of more reid fic.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 06:07 pm (UTC)
First of all, can I say how completely ecstatic I am to see the continuation of this?

I don’t even know, that may be all I say because your words took mine away. Seriously. You never cease to astound me with this story. Every chapter is like an overwhelming but oh so welcomed punch in the gut. When authors write a series sometime it seems like the chapters are just there to draw an eventual close and you’re writing is not like that. It flows and evokes emotion throughout almost every paragraph. This verse has got my head spinning. You write these characters so well and give them the most beautiful dialogue.

Seriously, don’t know to say other than it was phenomenal chapter!
Oct. 2nd, 2008 09:18 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much. I was somewhat surprised at how this section came out. I was envisioning something else happening, but then they kept talking. I'm glad the dialogue worked. Seriously. They would not shut up.

Glad that my continuation could make you happy.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 09:26 pm (UTC)
Awesome doesn't begin to describe how good this chapter was! So much emotions, so much hurt and pain yet tenderness and maybe even a touch of love already there.. Can't wait for the next chapter!
Oct. 5th, 2008 01:49 am (UTC)
wanna write the next chapter for me? :)

i have to get on that!
(no subject) - sparta_chick - Oct. 5th, 2008 02:17 pm (UTC) - Expand
Oct. 2nd, 2008 10:25 pm (UTC)

When Noah couldn't breathe, I couldn't breathe. I love how damaged Noah is and I love how Luke is willing to put it him back together. I love how Noah is trying so hard not to fall in love with Luke but he is anyway. And I love how Luke is going to take anything and everything throws his way.

Oct. 5th, 2008 01:46 am (UTC)
*grins* thanks moey. i always hope that i'll get comments from you when i write something. they make me all giggly and happy. Glad to know this is still working even with my hiatus and all.
Oct. 2nd, 2008 11:35 pm (UTC)
I don't usually read AUs but I've always enjoyed your other work so I decided to read this story from the beginning. Wow...I'm so glad that I did! I love this! Poor Noah breaks my heart but I love how Luke is there to take care of him. Hopefully he can show Noah that he's worthy of love and a life where he doesn't have to sell his body.

I can't wait for the next chapter!
Oct. 5th, 2008 01:52 am (UTC)
I'm really flattered that you took a chance on this. It continues to astound me that something i wrote as a drabble for a pornathon turned into a world to which i keep coming back.

I was thinking about Noah wanting to leave the business, but i suspect that his fears about luke are about to send him head first into selling himself a lot as a coping strategy. we'll see. maybe it won't happen.
Oct. 3rd, 2008 01:20 am (UTC)
Everyone else has expounded on all the things I love about this story so I'll just stand up and add my ovation. \o/ Touchdown!

What I like about this Noah is that he is jaded and cynical and tries to appear bitterly tough, but really he is just a wounded soul looking for some answers and unconditional love. I hope Luke can be the one to provide it for him...even with the huge fight you hinted at. I can see how you might let Noah get just scared enough to try and sabotage the relationship...just let him rip Luke a new one with scathing insults and biting sarcasm...only to have Luke stand tall and throw it all right back at Noah. Truly a "you can't make me hate you because I love you too much" scenario.

Okaaay, let me just shut up now and let you write your own fic. Didn't mean to go off like that, but it's really your fault, you know. You write too well and make me fall in love with your characters way too easily.

I guess I'm just your little story whore. :)
Oct. 5th, 2008 01:55 am (UTC)
aww, everyone needs a story whore :) i don't think i've had one before. And please, don't hesitate to make suggestions. i find myself winging this a lot, and every time i think i've got in my mind what's going to happen, it goes ahead and changes because the characters are jerks and make me listen to them instead of them listening to me.

i commented to someone else, but since yesterday i've had this visceral image of noah letting himself get fucked - a lot - and basically going on a bender so he doesn't have to deal with what's going on with him and luke.

and then i get this shot in my mind of luke waiting outside noah's door when noah returns, sore and bruised, and luke says "you never texted me ..."

*shrugs* i guess i'll see what spews forth from my fingers later in the week.
Oct. 6th, 2008 04:11 am (UTC)
Noah is so sweet and tortured!

I love this fic! Glad you updated it!! Can't wait to read more. I wanna know where this is going, cause I think I'm going to like it :)

PS. That's for the head's up about the new chapter. School and family shit has kind of eaten my brain and it's hard to keep up XD
Oct. 6th, 2008 10:11 am (UTC)
no problem. I was procrastinating on my work and adding links at the bottoms of each piece. your comment caught my eye, and i figured after 40+ days away from this, it would be nice to let people know. I try to be helpful sometimes. ;)

Hope school and family shit get resolved and regurgitate your brain sooner than later.
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