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Tim woke up as the sun started to peek through the window, rolling over with a sharp inhale and stretching his arms but trying not to whack his boyfriend in the process. He stared through the cracks in the blinds, seeing the outlines of the neighborhood beginning to bustle around them. Moms getting their kids ready for school, people sipping coffee on their front yards. It wasn’t the kind of life he had, and he was okay with that. But it was nice to see a glimpse into what was happening around him. After a moment he rolled over, ready to wake up his boyfriend but was surprised to see that he was not even there. Not confining himself to his side of the bed this time, he gave one more big stretch before standing up to go investigate. Jay never woke up before him, so this was strange.

He figured it out quickly as he walked into the hallway, smelling the pancakes and coffee he let his feet move him towards the kitchen with a smile.

“Morning, sleepyhead.” Jay smiled, flipping the last pancake and motioning for Tim to sit at the table.

“Morning.” He yawned, sitting down. “You’re up early.”

“Yeah, I got a call for a potential client this morning.” Jay turned off the stove, bringing the plate of pancakes along with two clean plates and silverware over to the table. He grabbed the mugs, filling them with coffee and of course the butter and syrup before sitting down across from Tim. “Figured I’d do something nice while I was up. Since you’re the one always making breakfast for me.”

“Well thank you.” Tim gave a small smile, reaching across their small dining table to kiss Jay on the cheek. He settled back down in his chair, noticing the smile on Jay’s face as well as he started to dig in. “So you got a job? What is it?”

Jay was a freelance videographer, and Tim worked at a music store. They both love what they did but money was tight. So the potential of another job for this week was good. It would help them a lot.

“Oh! So this guy just wants me to… Follow him around for like two days and record him. Like a documentary kind of thing.”

“Really? Sounds simple enough. When is it?”

Jay sighed, taking a sip of his coffee. “It starts tomorrow. So it would interfere with the other job I booked but maybe I should do this one instead. It’s going to pay $3,000..”

Tim almost spit out his drink at that.

“$3,000?! Jay, that would help us out so much.”

“I know! Do you think I should take that one instead? Or- wait! You’re off this weekend what if you did it and I could still do the other job?” Jay being the nerd he was, had plenty of cameras to get the jobs done.

Tim thought for a moment on it. It was a good idea.

 

“I don’t know. It sounds like a big job. I wouldn’t want to mess it up.”

“You’d do great. You’re following a guy around with a camera. No fancy angles. He wants just… Raw and focused on him. Only if you want to though, if you don’t I’ll just take this job and dump the other one.”

“No! I’ll do it.” Tim cracked a small smile, in which Jay did the same. “I want to help. You’ll just have to show me how to use your camera.” He chuckled.

“Of course! Thank you.” He reached to grab his hand. “This will be good. Maybe we can afford a nice date with it or something.”

“If this goes well, I'll take you on two nice dates.” He grinned, giving his hand a squeeze.

“I’ll be looking forward to it.” Jay smiled, kissing his hand before letting go so he could finish his pancakes. “Do you work today?”

“Nope. I’m off ‘til Monday.” He sighed. “Which is good for this, but they’re cutting my hours.”

“Right…” Jay nodded, scratching the back of his neck. “Well, we’ll worry about that later, yeah? I’ll show you the ropes with the camera and I’ll call the guy saying we can do it. And we can just hang out today. I feel like I haven’t seen you as much recently.”

“I know, I’m sorry.”

“Hey, it happens.” Jay smiled, finishing up his plate and going to put it in the sink. He sat back across from him, still sipping at his coffee. “I’m just happy to see you now.”

“And I’m happy to see you too.”

***

The day passed by quickly, Tim learned about cameras, Jay confirmed the job and they watched a stupid amount of jeopardy. But now it was time for the boys to part for the weekend. Tim got up the next morning, packing his bag while Jay zoomed around the house to get everything he needed for the day.

“You gonna text me the second you get there?” Jay asked as he threw on his jacket.

“Yes. Are you?”

“Yes. It’s not far from here though, yours is all the way up in the mountains.” Jay wandered over, wrapping his arms around Tim’s neck. He pulled Jay close to him, looking down at him with a small loving smile.

“I’ll be fine. As you said, I got this.”

“I know. I’m just going to miss you.”

“I’ll miss you too.”

They spent a few more minutes giving their goodbyes, but eventually, Tim was the only one left in their side of the quaint little duplex.

He finished packing and sat around for a moment until it was time for him to leave as well, locking up the house and loading the car up with everything. He mounted the camera on the dashboard, getting the navigation and music ready on his phone before setting on his journey.

He let the soft tunes and abrupt directions by Siri carry him most of the way there, but as he finished the drive up the mountain he pressed record on the camera. Figured he’d get a head start on recording.

“Hi, uh my name is Tim Wright. I’m currently on my way to this... Project. I told my boyfriend I’d help him out with. They said we would get like 3 grand but I’m not quite sure what to expect. Like what if this is secretly some... Old lady, that wants me to do some weird shit? No.. I’m not doing that. I’ll find another way to make this money if I need to. But..” He sighed, turning at the long lengthy driveway as Siri chimed for his arrival. “I guess I’ll find out soon.”

He turned off the music and navigation, parking the car and taking a moment to text Jay before grabbing the camera. As he got out he almost threw a punch at the man suddenly by the driver's side.

“Oh.. sorry I didn’t mean to scare ya.” The guy chuckled. He couldn’t have been much older than Tim which was a relief. “You must be Jay’s helper! Tim, right?”

“Uh.. yeah.” He extended the hand that wasn’t holding the camera. The guy gave a big grin, shaking Tim’s hand.

“It’s nice to meet you, Tim. My name is Alex Kralie. Are you ready to get started?”

Chapter Text

Chapter 2:

“Come in! Can I get you something to drink?” The man escorted Tim into the house. It was a pretty spacious looking house for seemingly one guy, kind of rustic, wooden style home. It definitely showed off that he was easily able to afford to drop $3,000 on a videographer.

“No I’m alright for now but thanks.” He nodded, adjusting the camera that was now fully on Alex. He noticed and stuck his face right in front of the lens, wiggling his eyebrows a bit.

“Ah..! Recording already?? Good! Jay must have taught you well.”

“Yeah, well. I figured you’d want to start right away.” He stepped back a bit. Alex noticed this and straightened up with a smug expression, tilting his head a bit.

“Why did you step back?”

“Instinct I guess..” Tim muttered.

“Do you not like people being close to you, Tim?”

“Um… I don’t know? I’m just not used to it.”

“Well. Just know you don’t have to be afraid around me.” Alex smiled, leading him to the kitchen table. Before he could reply with ‘I don’t know this because I just met you.’ He motioned for Tim to sit down across from him.

He did as told, sitting the camera down on the table.

“So what do you expect to come out of these two days together, Tim?”

The camera adjusted in and out of focus as Alex shifted in his seat, giving a kind smile with a very small hint of mischief.

“Uh.. Well I was told that you just wanted me to-”

“No, no, no. Not what you were told. What do you think is going to happen?”

“Well. I think I’ll get to see your everyday life?” He awkwardly rubbed the palm of his hands on his jeans, already slightly uncomfortable with this situation. Alex gave a small chuckle.

“That’s a good guess.” His smile dropped with a small sigh. “Tim, have you ever done something you regret? You don’t have to tell me what but… have you?”

Tim paused for a moment, half to think and half out of pure surprise. He chose to stay silent.

Alex leaned across the table, the corner of his glasses lightly hitting the camera lens.

“Tim?”

“Yes.”

“You have?” He looked up at him curiously.

“Yes, I have.” Tim nodded, staying still.

“So. You won’t judge me for what I’m about to say?”

“No.” Maybe.

Alex leaned a little closer, so now his shoulder was blocking the camera.

“I’ve done a lot of bad things, Tim. I won’t say what but. I want to do this so people know that I’ve… I’ve gotten better.” His face looked like one of a sad child, close to Tim’s no matter how far back he tried to lean in his chair. “You can help me right? Help me prove that I’m not the person I used to be?”

He stared at him for a moment, the innocent look behind the glasses but Tim could tell there was more to be uncovered here.

“I can help you.”

“Good. I like that answer.” Alex sat back in his chair, his smile returning as soon as he rested back in the frame.

“So. Where should we start?”

***

The answer was: A tour of the house. Tim spent an hour following him around as he showed off pictures of himself as a child, photos of his girlfriend, the fancy furniture he got from working hard at his job. But for now, it was time for lunch.

“We should take a quick detour. Can you wait a few minutes?”

Alex sat in the passenger seat of Tim’s Sedan as he awkwardly chauffeured this man around.

“Uh yeah. Just tell me where.”

“Turn right.” Alex smiled

He did as told, following his directions until they arrived at the end of a dirt path.

“It’s a few minute walk, is that okay?”

“Sure.” Tim said like he had a choice anyway. He parked the car and grabbed his camera, following Alex on their short hike through the mountains. It was a small path that eventually leads them up to a spot hidden in the trees. There was a creek resting next to the cliff.

“Isn’t it beautiful?” Alex grinned, turning back his head up towards the sky and giving a small spin.

“Yeah. It is.” Tim nodded.

“Here, let me show you a few things.” Alex took Tim by the wrist and he hesitantly followed. He motioned for him to put the camera down as they stood near the creek. Tim did so and copied Alex as he rolled up his pant legs and take off his shoes. He’s just going along with things for now, but still not entirely sure how he felt about the situation. The good thing is if things got bad Tim could probably take him.

They stepped into the creek and Alex playfully splashed some water at Tim.

“We’re friends, right Tim?”

“Uh.. right.” He sighed, shielding himself from more splashing.

“I think we’ll become great friends by the end of tomorrow. Don’t you?”

“Yeah. Sure.”

“Come on.” Alex tilted his head to relay to Tim to follow as they carefully walked to the edge of the creek. “Look down.”

Tim took a sharp breath going back to grab the camera (evidence) before walking back to where he was, basically driving his feet as deep into the water as he could as he tilted his head down the side.

It was easy to see the heart shape that formed from the rocks. Sticking out like a sore thumb against the things around it.

“Isn’t it gorgeous.”

“Yeah. It is.” It really was. It surprised him.

“See? This symbolizes our friendship, Tim. Now that you’ve been here and you’ve seen a piece of me. This is where it begins.”

Tim stiffened, still uncomfortable with this but gave a small nod.

“Alright. I don’t know about you but I’m getting hungry.” He chuckled nervously, quickly trying to change the subject.

“Oh, sure!” Alex grinned. “There’s a nice little diner not too far from here. All-day breakfast, they have the best pancakes.”

They wandered out of the water, got their shoes back on and headed to the car.

Tim mounted the camera, starting the drive with a single shot of Alex staring at Tim with a grin so twisted it could scare the toughest of men. It revealed everything that had yet to be said. Too bad Tim didn’t notice.

Chapter Text

Arriving at The Frost Diner a few minutes away from the lookout spot, Alex and Tim sat down in a booth both cradling a cup of coffee. Alex kept a smile on his face as the camera stayed focused on him.

“Alright, let’s see what looks good here.” He opened a menu.

“Didn’t you say they have good pancakes?” Tim raised an eyebrow.

“Uh, yeah… I did. But I want to see what else they have.” Alex responded with lacking confidence.

Tim pushed it aside for now and fidgeted with his menu while they waited for the waitress. Once they ordered, Alex turned his full attention towards him.

“Are you enjoying our time together?”

“Uh, yeah.” He nodded. “I’ll probably have to head out once we get back though. So I can get back to my hotel before it gets too dark.”

“Hotel?” Alex almost looked offended. “Tim I have a perfectly good guest room, just stay with me.”

“Ah no, it’s okay. I already paid for it for tonight y’know? Don’t want my money to go to waste…”

“I’ll refund you for it.”

“No. That’s okay really.”

Alex sighed. “Only if you’re sure. I’d hate for you to spend the money.”

“It’s okay, we had a coupon. It wasn’t too expensive.”

As Alex went to speak, the waitress placed two stacks of pancakes in front of them. They both thanked her and ate in awkward silence. After Alex covered the food, they got in the car and started their drive back to the house.

“Before you go, could I ask you to get a few more shots of some things?”

“Yeah, sure.” Tim nodded, then the silence resumed until the pulled up. They walked up the steps and into the house. “What did you want shots of?”

“Whatever you see fit! I’ll be right back.” Alex zoomed up the stairs and Tim let out a sigh. He could leave right now but he didn’t feel like that was the best tactic. So he slowly walked around the house, getting some b-roll of random things. He noticed the stairs down to the basement and raised an eyebrow. Wondered if there was anything.. Worth seeing down there.

He carefully walked down the steps, stopping at the door that was resting between the two staircases on the landing. He opened the door to reveal a closet. But what was inside almost made Tim scream.

A white morph suit covered in what looked to be splatters of blood hung neatly inside of a black suit. Quickly shutting the door he whipped around to turn back up the stairs but Alex was directly behind him.

“Sorry I wasn’t sure what was behind the door and if it was anything I could get some shots of I-”

“Tim,” Alex said calmly. “It’s alright. Come sit with me okay?”

“I don’t know Alex I should really get going.”

“Tim.” He said a bit more stern this time which shut him right up. “Come on.”

He slowly followed, sitting down at his spot on the table.

“You saw the suit?”

“Yeah..”

Alex chuckled. “I know it looks weird but I acted in my friend's film awhile back and I.. kept the suit as a memory. It was a horror film. Do you like horror, Tim?”

“Not really.”

“That’s okay. I used to not like it very much but I’ve grown fond of it. Do you believe me that it’s just a costume?”

“Yeah, I do..”

“Good.” Alex smiled. “We got some good material today, yeah? Go rest and can you come by around 8 am tomorrow?”

“Sure.” Tim nodded, turning off the camera.

They said their goodbyes and Tim slowly walked to his car, pausing for a moment before basically speeding to his hotel.

Chapter Text

Checking in to the local hotel, Tim immediately went up to his room to hopefully shower the stress of today away. He took a moment to dry off and change into comfortable clothes before video calling his boyfriend.

“Hey, handsome!” Jay picked up after a few rings, standing next to Tim’s best friend and their duplex neighbor, Brian.

“Hey.” He smiled, relieved to see them both. “How are you both?”

“Good! We’re watching a movie.”

“Nice! What movie?”

“Some random rom com. It’s boring without you.”

“I’m sure it is.” Tim chuckled

“How’s the shoot so far?” Brian asked

“Fine...Weird.”

“Weird how?”

“I don’t know there’s just something off about this guy. He kept asking me these weird questions and the entire time things just felt off?”

“Do you need us to come up there with you?”

“No, it’s… Probably better that I’m the one here.” Tim sighed, propping the phone up so he could grab his laptop to order some food.

“You say that like it’s actually dangerous.” Brian chimed, raising a brow.

“No, I mean I’m sure he’s fine. Just a kooky guy, whatever. But I just rather it is me that has to deal with it.”

“Well, just a few more hours tomorrow and then it’ll be over. And we’ll be rich.” Jay chuckled lightly.

“Hey, I get to partake in that $3,000 victory dinner, right?” Brian smirked.

“Of course you do.” Tim nodded. “Anyways, for now, what should I order for food?”

The three continued to chat mindlessly as Tim ended up ordering some cheap fast food but hey, at least he got to get it delivered to his hotel door. They filled each other in on their days, Jay stated multiple times how much he already missed Tim while Brian made noises of disgust in the background, you know, the usual.

After about half an hour, there was a soft knock on the door. Tim greeted the man and settled back on his bed. They said their goodbyes so Tim could eat and watch shitty hotel tv in peace and that’s exactly what he did. Friends played mindlessly as he ate and scrolled through his phone, letting the camera charge for tomorrow as he enjoyed the silence.

Or at least, he was enjoying the silence.

A jarring knock sounded on the wood of the door, nothing like the one just moments before. Tim swears to god he jumped in the air as it sounded. Rushing to the door but no one was there. He swung it open and looked around but the floor was.. Still.

“What the fuck?” He grumbled, lock the door and going back to the bed. Probably just some teenager playing a prank, right?

The rest of the night flew by interrupted, but Tim couldn’t quite shake today's strange events. After thinking for a while he fell asleep, waking up bright and early to check out and go record more with Alex. He packed his bag, got himself and the camera ready and headed down for some shitty breakfast and coffee. Realizing he forgot to repack his seizure medication after taking it, he put it in his pocket, for now, to return it to the bag later. He gave a content sigh as he looked around to see he was the only one in the breakfast area beside the tired attendant. He wasn’t quite sure what to expect from his day with Alex but at least tonight he would get to see his boyfriend and best friend.

He eventually pulled himself away, taking some coffee and an apple to, handing in his keycard and giving his farewells to the dingy hotel. Sitting in his car he took a deep breath, heading back to Alex’s house.

***

Tim pulled up in the driveway and Alex immediately rushed down the stairs and stood at the window.

“Well good morning.”

“Morning.” He nodded, grabbing the camera and exiting the car.

“Have you had breakfast? I just made myself something but if you’re hungry I can cook you something!” Alex smiled.

“Nah I’m good I ate at the hotel.”

Alex scowled a bit without realizing as Tim mentioned the hotel, he raised an eyebrow at him but once he realized he just gave a small sigh.

“Take a seat! Let’s talk about our plans for the day.”

Tim nodded and sat down at the table, still sipping at his coffee. Alex still had that mischievous smile on his face.

“What if we did kind of an interview type thing? Where you ask me questions about my life and I’ll answer them!”

“Uh yeah sure.” Tim nodded.

“Good! Let’s do that and one other thing.”

“One other thing?”

“Oh, you’ll see.” He chuckled. “Let me go make myself look presentable and then we can start?”

“Sure.” Tim nodded, slightly nervous.

Alex nodded and walked upstairs to get changed. Tim just sighed and leaned back in his chair, mentally preparing himself for whatever was to come from today.

Chapter Text

“My name is Alex Kralie. I’m 28 years old. I have a beautiful wife named Amy, and we have a son on the way.” Alex stated proudly to the camera as Tim ‘interviewed’ him for part of the video.

“What do you do for work?”

“I’m a video editor, actually.”

Tim raised an eyebrow, straightening up a bit.

“Then why did you hire uh.. Me for this?”

“Well I needed someone to capture me in a way that I couldn’t.” He responded awkwardly. Like it was a quick excuse.

“Alright uh.. Well how did you meet your wife Amy?”

“We met in college, I proposed to her a year later. We got married 3 years ago.”

“Nice. Uh.. Where is she now?”

“Oh well she’s a vet and she got a call to go help a horse on a farm. She’ll be coming back tomorrow, actually.”

“Wow, sounds like a big job.”

“Yeah.. She can handle it though, she’s amazing.” He smiled.

“She sounds.. Cool? What’s she like?” A question Tim would soon regret asking.

“Well she’s kind, sweet and funny. She’s been there for me through..” He paused, his smile dropped. “Everything. All the bad things I’ve done. She never judged me for anything that happened and I’m grateful for that.”

“That’s good.” Tim nodded slowly, slightly weirded out by the change.

“Do you have anyone like that in your life, Tim?”

“Yeah.”

“Who?”

He sighed for a moment, figuring he would play along for now and just answer the question.

“My partner.”

“Jay?”

They never stated to him they were together when they finalized the job.

“Uh, yeah.” He nodded awkwardly.

“Good, good.. He accepts you for who you are?”

“Yeah, he does.”

“How long have you two been together?”

“Almost 5 years,”

Alex nodded, his energy still off as he continued.

“Tim?”

“...Yes?”

“Do you remember the question I asked you yesterday?”

“If I have ever done something I regretted?”

Don’t say yes. Don’t say yes.

“Yes.”

Tim nodded. “Yeah… what about it?”

“Well, what is it?”

He quickly shook his head. “No. I’m not telling you.”

“Well why not? I’ll tell you something about me if you do.”

“Because I just met you yesterday. And it’s not why I’m here. Now anyways-”

“Tim.” He sighed, looking slightly pained. “You don’t consider me a friend?”

“I don’t know. I don’t know you very well.”

“Well, all we’ve been doing for the past while is asking questions so I think you do know me.”

“Look, I’m just your videographer it doesn’t have to be personal.” Tim said, getting slightly defensive.

Alex gave him a look, something between repressed anger and sadness.

“I beg to differ. I am showing you my life and I am opening up to you.”

Tim sighed, afraid he went too far. He took a moment to breath before continuing.

“Fine. We’re friends.” He sighed.

“Really?” Alex’s smile brightened. He jumped up and ushered Tim out of his chair to give him a hug. As much as he didn’t want to he awkwardly hugged the man, taking a moment before pulling away. Alex smiled, Tim not even noticing as he tucked something into his pocket before sitting back at the table. “Now. Will you tell me?”

“I’ve been keeping something from Jay. That’s all you’re getting.” Tim said with a flat tone.

Alex nodded, still smiling. “Understandable. Thank you for telling me at least that much, Tim.”

“Yeah uh. “I’m.. going to run to the restroom.” Tim abruptly stood up, needing to excuse himself from the conversation for a moment.

“Alright!” Alex nodded, watching as he ran off.

Tim shut the door and slumped against it with a sigh. He pulled out his phone to text Jay

Tim: “I don’t know how much longer I can do this. This guy is nuts.”

He waited a moment for a text back but didn’t hear anything. He sighed and buried his head in his hands, trying to keep his composure. They needed this. He couldn’t back out now.

Tim: “Ignore that. Everything is fine.”

***

Once Tim reentered the dining room they basically spent the rest of the time continuing the interview, recording Alex doing some trivial things, basically whatever would make him look.. normal

“Well, I guess we’re all done. I should get heading back.” Tim said as the sun set, he was hungry and ready to go back home.

“Wait! Before you go, let's have a drink. To celebrate.”

“I don’t know.. It’s getting late.”

“Oh please?!” Alex whined with big gullible eyes. “I want to thank you for all of your hard work.”

Tim sighed, knowing it might be hard to get out of this. “Fine. A few minutes.”

Alex grinned and went over to pour them two glasses of whiskey. Tim watched carefully to make sure he wasn’t about to get poisoned or something before settling back down at the table.

“Well, cheers! To friendship, new beginnings and an amazing new film.”

“Cheers.” Tim agreed as they clinked their glasses together. Humor him for a little bit longer Tim and then you can get out of whatever this is. He took a sip, not wanting to drink too much before he had to drive back but hey, a little bit of backup for what was about to come.

Alex gave a content sigh. “I really appreciate everything, Tim.. It’s a shame Jay couldn’t join us for all the fun though!”

His expression twisted a bit. “I mean it’s not really a job for two people anyways so..”

“True.” He nodded. “Oh! I almost forgot.” Alex hummed as he went upstairs, emerging a few moments later with a stuffed white envelope. “Your pay, as promised.”

He took the envelope. Good. Now get the fuck out of there. “Thanks.”

“Sure! Before you leave can you do… one last thing for me though?”

Tim sighed. Fuck. “Uh.. what is it?”

“Tim I’d like to tell you something. Can you turn off the camera?”

He froze. “Uh.. why? Shouldn’t we get it for the film?”

“Tim. Please.” His voice was serious now.
He hesitantly covered the camera lens but kept it on. Although he told Alex it was off.

“I wanted to share with you the thing I regret. Is that alright?”

“Yeah.. sure.” What choice did he have at this point anyways?

He sighed, bowing his head as he spoke.

“Do you remember that suit you found in my closet?”

***

Alex leaned back in his chair as he finished the story. And Tim did not know how to react.

“Okay well! I should get going now.” He stood up abruptly, setting the camera back on the table.

“Tim. Did I scare you?”

“NO. No! No… I just need to get back Jay is probably getting worried.”

“Come on. One more drink before you go?”

“I shouldn’t drink anymore but I can get you another.” He insisted. He knew getting out of here wouldn’t be easy so he had a plan.

“Uh, sure! Are you sure you don’t want anymore?”

“Yeah! Positive.” He took his glass and went over to fill it up. The bottle was right in front of the medicine cabinet so while his back was turned he crushed up a few sleeping pills and put it into his drink. He brought it back over to him and just. Waited.

About 20 minutes of rambling passed before Alex passed out in his chair. Tim quickly got up and grabbed his things. He noticed Alex’s phone on the table and grabbed it, quietly stepping into the next room. Thankfully there wasn’t a passcode so he quickly opened the phone and dialed the contact labeled “AMY.”

“Hello. Alex?” Someone picked up after a few rings.

“Amy? My name is Tim.”

“Uh, why do you have Alex’s phone?”

“Listen. Something is going on here. He hasn’t let me leave and he told me something really crazy and I’m going to call the police. I just wanted to tell you first since.. He’s your husband.”

“What?! Okay. Slow down. Husband? Look I don’t know what he told you but we’re just friends. We went to college together. He’s not… All there. You need to get out of there. Don’t even bother with the police right now just go!”

“Fuck... shit okay.”

“Give me your number I’ll fill you in once you’re home okay?”

Tim quickly recited the number before hanging up the phone. He walked back into the kitchen to set Alex’s phone down but to his surprise, Alex was already awake. He looked to Tim with a chuckle and a maniacal smile.

“Tim. I thought we were friends! Why did you try to poison my drink?”

“I didn’t! You just passed out!”

Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.

“Tim I am hurt. Now you’re trying to lie to me?”

“You lied to me! You told me Amy was your wife and obviously that was bullshit.”

“What do you mean?! She is my wife. I love her!”

Tim started backing up towards the door. “Look I have to go.”

“Tim. Please just stay a bit longer.”

“I can’t! I have to go Alex I’ve been here long enough-”

He was cut off by his phone chiming. A reply from Jay from earlier.

Jay: “What do you mean? What’s he doing do you need us to come down there?!”

Alex snatched the phone out of Tim’s grip, he took a look at the conversation before throwing his phone back at him and running away. Running.. Towards the door.

Tim gathered his phone and ran around looking for another way out. He tried a few windows but the screens wouldn’t budge.

Tim: “Call the police. Send them here NOW.”

He sent the message to Jay, pausing a moment before sending another one.

Tim: “I love you so much.”

He huffed and ran to the door but stopped as he took in the scene.

Alex was standing there in the blood splattered white morph suit and tuxedo just standing still. He remembered the thing that he told him earlier but it didn’t stop him as he yelled and ran towards the man.

He would get out of this house. Dead or alive.

Chapter Text

"Do you remember that suit you found in my closet?" Alex leaned against the table.

 

"Uh... Yeah, I remember. What about it?"

 

"I told you it was a costume, right Tim?"

 

"Yeah?" Tim started to get a bit nervous.

 

"Well, it is a costume. But not in the way I told you. It wasn't for a movie."

 

"Okay?" Tim wasn't picking up on any hints.

 

Alex sighed and leaned across the table further. "Tim. I did bad things. The blood on the suit wasn't fake."  He said plainly. Assuming now Tim would get the hint.

 

"Oh... OH!" Tim gasped, scooting his chair back.

 

"Tim, please let me explain! It was a long time ago."

 

"How long ago? Why do you still have it then? If this is the thing you regret, then get rid of the suit Alex!" Tim snapped, getting a bit freaked out. Holy shit. He was in the home of a fucking murderer.

 

"I can't! What if he needs me again?!"

 

"He? What- who the fuck?!"

 

"The Operator." He grabbed Tim's sleeve. "He needs me. That's why I have the suit, so I can be as close to him as possible!" He gave a maniacal laugh. "But I want to be more than that Tim. I want people to see me for more than that." His demeanor changed back quickly.

 

"Well choose one! You can't be a good person and an active fucking murderer!" Holy shit. Saying it out loud sounded even worse. He needed to get out of here. He shook Alex away, pushing himself back as far as he could go.

 

This was all Tim could think about as he sped down the mountain, trying to keep himself calm but he couldn't. As he stopped at a light he let out a scream, slamming his fist against the chair before continuing to drive.

 

Tim could have died.

 

Tim screamed as he ran down the stairs, ramming himself straight into Alex. The boy chuckled and threw Tim aside, but he quickly bounced back and punched Alex hard in the jaw. It caught him off guard and Tim took the opportunity to slam him to the ground and run past him.

 

"You can't leave that easy, Tim!" Alex exclaimed as he reached out to grab Tim by the ankle, he quickly fell to the ground but pushed his heel into Alex's hand as he rose up and continued to run towards the car. Quickly getting in and turning it on he stared Alex dead in the eyes as he sped out of the driveway.

 

If Jay was there, things could have been worse. He wouldn't have been able to fight him the way Tim did. Physically or mentally.

 

Jay could have died.

 

Tim would take the sore back and traumatic memories over that any day.

 

He eventually got back to the town he was used to. The familiar, quaint little town where nothing happened. It was quiet as the sun was setting. And he was thankful for that. He settled down a bit as he drove the familiar route home. But was still filled with nerves.

 

As he parked in the driveway he left everything in the car and just ran up to the door, pounding on it probably a little harder than he should have. He needed to see Jay.

 

"Who the fuck- TIM!" He could hear Jay scream from inside the house. The door burst open and he took no time to hesitate to basically catapult himself off of step and into Tim's arms. He caught him quickly, ignoring the dull pain as he did so and just held onto him as tight as he could. Jay's body shook a bit as he tried to hold back his tears.

 

"I'm okay, everything's okay," Tim assured him. He was just relieved to be here.

 

"I thought you were dead!"

 

"I know... I'm sorry I just had to get out of there I didn't know what else to do."

 

"W-what happened in their Tim?"

 

"I'll explain everything. I promise. We just need to get inside, where's Brian?"

 

His question was answered seconds later as Brian ran out of his side of the duplex, crashing in on their hug.

 

"Tim! You're okay thank god!"

 

Tim sighed, closing his eyes as he wrapped his arms around both of them.

 

"Yeah... I'm okay."

 

***

 

They all went into Tim and Jay's side of the duplex as Tim explained every detail of what happened. Including him trying to get out of him the thing he was keeping from Jay. Not like he had the energy to care about that at the moment, all he cared about was that Tim was safe. As he finished reciting off the events of the last two days, he kept his head down. Afraid to see the reactions.

 

"Jay, you called the police right?" Brian broke the silence.

 

"Uh... Yeah. I did. But I haven't heard anything back. Second, they see that suit though, fuckers gonna have to be thrown in jail."

 

"Yeah but, I'm the one who tried to poison him fucking drink."

 

"It was self-defense. You have the proof on video." 

 

"I know but still. You didn't meet him, he can turn any of that shit around! I should have just continued to play along with whatever the fuck he was gonna do."

 

"No! Tim. If you stayed there any longer who knows what could've happened." Brian looked to him with a worried expression.

 

Tim just sighed and rest his head on Jay's shoulder and Brian copied his movement so his head was on Tim's shoulder. They sat in silence and just enjoyed each other's company for a while until Tim eventually spoke up.

 

"Hey... On the bright side." He pulled the white envelope out of his pocket. "I got the money."

 

Jay gave a sigh of relief, slowly taking the envelope from him and fishing through it with a small smile.

 

"I'm sorry this is how we had to get it."

 

"It's fine. Hopefully, it's all over now."

 

"Yeah, Hopefu-" Jay cut himself off as his fingers skimmed a small note in the envelope. He paused and slowly took it out to read it, dropping everything as he did so.

 

The note fluttered to the ground, landing face up and showing the words "This should be enough for you to get a head start."