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Bait and Hitch

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Here’s the thing: hospitals suck. I mean, anyone can tell you that. But there’s this one particular way in which they suck, so let’s hear a bit of a story about it. Spoiler alert, it’s not really about hospitals, but every good story needs a hook, I’ve learned that much living in Tinseltown. Anyway.

That first time we were all just lucky to come in together, because hospitals don’t actually let you walk into random people’s rooms. And even though I put Perry as my emergency contact after he hired me, it didn’t always work that well, because he’s still not family and people are weird and prejudiced, even in hospitals. It wasn’t the biggest deal, because not even I manage to get major injuries at every street corner, but once I did get hit by a car. Oh wow, how scary, you’ll say, but really it was some drunk guy backing out of his parking spot and it still fucked me up, now that’s a story for you. Then they wouldn’t update Perry and he was stuck outside until I was awake enough to request whoever the fuck I wanted in my room.

I’ll admit, it’s always nice to see Perry show he cares for me. Wasn’t great seeing him worried that badly either though. It’s not like he said something nice or anything, but “Fuck, I just need to know you’re okay somehow when shit like this happens” did it too (I offered to get “Property of Perry van Shrike” tattooed on my ass and he didn’t even laugh, so there you have it). Then Harmony showed up with a care package goodie bag that was pretending to be healthy on top but was in fact all candy at the bottom (this is why we’re friends) and here’s where something kinda weird happened. Don't ask me how. I was still pretty loopy on the good drugs, so I’ve got an excuse. Not even sure this weird plan was my idea and most importantly, all the completely fine and not doped-up people in the room were somehow on board with it.

So then me and Harmony got married. What a twist, right? We had Perry as our witness and it took about 10 minutes, and then we all had to run off, because we had a stakeout and Harmony was late to one of her jobs. No rings, no fancy clothes. I’m pretty sure Harmony was wearing a pajama top actually.

Was it weird because of that one time we almost fucked, you might ask. Well...not really? Pretty sure it was destiny it didn’t work out. Like, yeah, we had that overdramatic scene where I collapsed in her arms, but you can’t bring back the past and all that. She wasn’t like I remembered her, after all, and y’know, I didn’t want her to be. It ended up working out just fine. If we didn’t keep cracking jokes we might’ve all forgotten about it. Except for that one time I got mugged — I know, how ironic, haha — and it was really good they called Harmony, because Perry had no idea where I was. Also people are just way more talkative with a guy’s pretty blond wife. It’s a little fucked up. (And once they called me, because Harmony had nuclear level food poisoning that straight up made her faint at work and I ended up reading her weird personality quizzes from a Cosmo I nicked from the waiting room while they were pumping all the fluids back into her. A girl can do way worse, if you ask me.)

Still, being randomly married isn’t for everyone and I get that. Especially because Harmony got cast in some soap opera and was basically filming all day every day, so being on-call for when I “inevitably crack my head open on the side of a bouncy castle” (Perry’s words) was pretty stressful for her. Plus, have you met her? Totally indepence-obsessed. Ever had a stray cat lurking around your backyard that sorta seems to like you, but God forbid you try to take it inside? Same thing. Except you lure those with tuna and Harmony’s more of a red blend kinda girl.

Anyway. In the end, it kinda made sense, when she stormed a year or so later and slapped a newspaper on our table (yes, our. Shut up).

“Guys, they’re going to legalize gay marriage!”

I cautiously looked over at Perry, who was very pointedly not looking back.

“We don’t know that yet,” he said.

Now, we were kinda....a thing at this point, which Harmony knew about, because I told her as soon as it started looking like we might be. Asked her permission, in fact, to which she said, “What the fuck, Harry? Fucking duh?”

(I still don’t think it was a weird question. We were married!)

Harmony did her impatient fluttery hand thing and informed us in no uncertain terms that it was just a matter of time, so we should stop being babies about it, get hitched and make an honest woman out of her. Well, the other way round from what that usually means, obviously. Blondes just wanna to have fun and all that (or whatever that song’s called).

Well, she wasn’t wrong. It was kinda stupid to do the whole wife charade when I had an actual boyfriend(?) who’d do just as well, and was also blond, I might add. (That was meant to be a reference to the blond wife thing, not the Rod Stewart song, just so we’re clear here. But he'd hate both anyway.) And okay, sure, marrying a friend for a bullshit reason is different than marrying someone you’ve actually been, uh, dating(?) for just a couple of months. Plus Perry has a whole thing about commitment too, bla bla, you get it. On the other hand...what’s even the difference? I mean, it’s not like I didn’t try to figure it out. But when I asked him if we couldn't just be friends who are married but also fuck, Perry started laughing and said “God, Harry, that’s not how anything works” and then “What the hell. Let’s fucking do it.”

So we started on the whole divorce thing. Did you know that takes ages? Seriously, I started out thinking we were probably the happiest divorcing couple on earth, but no one’s ever been happy about much paperwork. And then we had to wait for half a fucking year, and all the protests started making us really nervous. I’d never paid attention to that stuff before, not even after I got with Perry, but now it felt like a whole different deal. Was getting me pretty damn mad actually, like hell some weirdos with wonky signs should have anything to say here. They even had the gall to block a store I was trying to get a sandwich from once, so I pickpocketed one of them and threw his wallet straight in the trash, all the accessories of his sad little homophobe life included. I’m not proud of it, but I’m not very sorry either, to be honest. (And I’m sure Perry also wouldn’t be all that mad if I told him. Which I won’t.)

But six months did pass eventually, and I was actually glad we didn’t end up getting married in the summer. I mean, have you been to LA in, say, July? Gross. Of course, we had to do even more forms and finalize everything and Perry came with because forms are kinda his job and he’d helped a lot (both of us, okay? Not just me). Might’ve been the weirdest day in that clerk’s life. Harmony kept blubbering like a baby (probably her new spiral...implant...thingy, because come on, Harmony never cries, everyone knows that). Not that crying’s inherently weird when you're getting divorced, but she also kept hugging both of us and then she high-fived me when we were done, so I have no idea what the poor guy ended up thinking.

Then we immediately sprinted over to apply for a license, like White House interns on speed. And thank fuck Perry found some strings to pull because otherwise we would’ve had to wait for ages for the ceremony. The appointment we ended up getting was at 7am and I didn’t even care, I was so stoked to finally get gay-married. It didn’t go very differently from last time. We did have rings, which were my idea, even though I have to wear mine on the wrong hand (thanks, Scooby). Harmony was our witness and she cried again and honestly, I came close too, but maybe my eyes were just watering from sleep deprivation (I don't think I need to tell you about Perry, you know well enough he made fun of both of us) — and then we all went straight back to work again. I didn’t mind. That first time I got married, y’know, way back East, we had all that stuff, the white dress and the huge party and the cake, and it hadn’t ended up mattering at all. So whatever.

Turns out Perry and I were one of the last couples who managed to squeak in just before the fuckers made it illegal again. No take backs though, so the electorate of California can suck my fucking dick. And two years later they changed visitation rules anyway and both Perry and Harmony were there when I woke up in the hospital next time, and because I had a burst appendix it wasn’t my fault and no one could lecture me about it, even if Perry still ended up swearing a lot.

So I’ve been leaving a really weird paper trail over here on the West Coast, but I guess it’s better than priors. I asked Perry if he’d think I was a weird pervert if he found all the paperwork out of context and he said yes. Then again, I also told Perry he didn’t have to wear the ring and he’d kinda just shrugged, but I still haven’t seen him take it off for more than five minutes. And that’s that.