It was nearly dusk, but Nico couldn't help but think that it was entirely too bright for his drug addled mind. He store at the wavering image of the spinning fan, he moved with it, swirling around the room as he laid on the plush bed. His head throbbed with the beat that was playing from the living room. Nico's stomach rolled with every lazy twirl his mind reeled to keep up with. Everything felt too heavy.
His eyes were lidded with the foggy intent of keeping himself awake to enjoy the high for as long as it would last. His limbs, Nico wondered if the immobile body parts could even be called that at this point, were splayed across his bed.
Nico almost jolted up when he realized that the powder-blue bed was not his. Almost. He decided last second that it wouldn't matter anyway if the owner of the room found him like this. They would probably be in a worse shape than Nico, anyway.
Nico giggled a little crazily at the thought that they would get angry at him. He could see that playing out. Percy's face turning red and his jugular bobbing when he yells at Nico. Anger looks good on Percy.
Nico reminds himself tiredly that it's not normal to that that about your friends. Friends that have girlfriends. Friends that have girlfriends and fool around behind her back with other friends like Nico. But then he's too high to actually care at this point.
The fan is still swirling blearily, he notices, but he himself no longer is.
The pounding in his ears gets louder when the music is finally cut, as if to make up for the silence it left behind. Nico's stomach rolls, he's officially off the high once he rushes to the bathroom and throws up whatever was in his system.
It's just as cold as ever, he notices as he leans against the tile wall, trying to fight off the next wave of nausea. Percy passes by, helping Jason with a passed out Leo. There's a slight breeze left from how quickly they walk by.
Nico's disassociated gaze catches the taught muscles in Percy's neck. He licks his cracked lips, decides that he needs another hit, and attempts to stumble off. He's caught by another partier that has watery blue eyes and his breath that stenches of beer. The guy smiles, probably said something disgusting that was supposed to act as a pick-up, and wraps a toned arm around Nico's waist. He recognizes the man well enough, he was flirting with Nico earlier; before they both had gotten shit-faced. He laughs and attempts to reciprocate, but he's utterly too disjointed with how his body works and he ends up slumped against him.
His name, what was it again? His mind immediately supplies that it started with a 'p', but Nico is sure that he's just wishing it were someone else. He struggles for a moment longer, then the man chuckles and helps him; Will.
He whispers something in Nico's ear. The beat starts back up again, a slow song, lots of bass. Nico likes to dance to those types of songs. He smiles, leads Will to the gyrating mess of people in the fraternity living room. He smirks up at baby blues, pretends they belong to someone else.
The song drops and it’s all loud around him, a needy heat encompassing him and a fluid feeling rushing in his veins. People bump and shove him a bit during the song, but it does nothing to wake him from the state he's in. The body behind him nips at his neck, says something that feels like buzzing in his ear. Like a fly. How annoying. Nico moves along with him anyway.
The hand that grabbed his arm is enough to bring him back to a bit of awareness. The grip is hard as he's roughly pulled away from the crowd. He's not sure what's happening as he is shoved against a wall. Head swirling warmly again, he loses himself when he stilled by the hands forcing him against the wall.
Dangerous, churning water stares back at him, when he opens his eyes. How did Nico ever think that Will's were similar to his, now presented with this deep color that pulls Nico in?
He's saying something, but it gets lost under the music, and then he's leaning in.
As Nico kisses back, he sees Annabeth on the other side of the room as she looks around for Percy.
The refrigerated section of the store holds a wall of beer that Percy and Jason tend to raid whenever the fraternity has an upcoming party. Filling around two carts with alcohol and chips. Nico laughs at how out of place his sleeping pills look thrown into the mix of the cart.
He stands on the metal support under the shopping cart, watching Percy grab cases with ease. He walks over and places them inside, pauses, and leans on the sides of the sides of the cart. Effectively caging Nico. Their chests are pressed together, and the scarcely hidden hunger in Percy's eyes makes Nico shiver.
Percy makes the extra effort to check the Jason's not looking when he kisses Nico roughly. He pulls back with a wolfish smirk.
He feels winded, watching Percy walk away to grab one more twelve pack.
Part of him hates how familiar it all is.
Annabeth is wrapped around Percy, they're not kissing, but their faces are so close that their labored breaths are mingling on each other’s lips. Nico sits on the couch across them, trying to hide behind Thalia and ignore the couple. Ignore the pain in his chest. Ignore it all.
It's hard when Percy keeps staring at him.
Annabeth doesn't notice, too absorbed in whatever Percy is saying. She glances over at Nico when she feels his heavy glance and smiles brightly. The smile does what she had hoped, the scared and anguished look in Nico's eyes fade to something warmer. Satisfied, she returns her attention back to Percy.
His deep blues stare unabashed at Nico when Annabeth tells him something. She smiles and pats his forearm as she untangles herself from Percy. They both stand, Annabeth moves to Thalia.
"Come on," She grins so brightly Nico feels the need to look away, "Let's dance!"
Percy stays behind with Nico, he smiles lopsidedly and it makes Nico's stomach churn. He grabs a hand, threading his fingers with Nico's. It's hard to ignore how right it feels. Percy tugs him up from the couch.
"Annabeth thought that you looked a little uncomfortable," Percy spoke over the music form the other room. Nico nodded, but looked away in shame. He couldn’t help but think that Annabeth's good intent was about to be tarnished.
He was getting used to this routine.
He sees Annabeth and Thalia dancing with Jason as they walked to another part of the house.
Percy always makes sure Annabeth is happy and distracted first.
He tugs Nico into his room, blue walls washed grey in the dark. The door closes silently and gently Percy pushes Nico back against it. He's being caged in, with Percy's hands on either side of him. He leans in, and
Nico is reminded of how he and Annabeth were earlier, then the thought is gone when Percy kisses him.
Then they do this.
Nico walks with Jason to grab some bread while they were pillaging the beer section of the supermarket. His eyes are glazed over, seemingly zoned out while Nico talks about a video game that just came out.
Jason turns over some loafs absentmindedly. Nico feels uncomfortable with his friend's demeanor.
"You okay, Jason?" He asks for more of his own benefit, he wants his jovial companion back.
Jason sighs, rolling his head and shoulders back in a slightly theatrical way, Nico snorts at the blond. "You know," He drawls slowly, as if he were contemplating something, "no- I know what you're doing, man."
Nico's stomach drops. "And," Jason continues, "I don't know if I'm madder at you for getting pulled along or Percy for starting it in the first place. I know it was Percy who started it, too."
Nico is stuttering, not sure if he should fight it or not.
"He told me he loves Annabeth, but something," Jason grates the last word, "was missing. Guess it meant you."
Nico was horrified, positively. His best friend was probably going to never talk to him again, was going to tell Annabeth, and then she would hate him. Percy could make it up to them both in some way, their history together could even help to mend it, but Nico...
"Hey," Jason gently grabs his shoulders, "I'm not gonna do anything, trust me, but I only want to say one thing: get out of this. He's going to break you, Nico. You think this is the first time he's dated Annabeth? In the time I've known them, they've been together twelve times. She's just asking for it by going back, but you-"
"I can handle myself," Nico hates how weak it sounds.
Jason smiles, "I know. I'm just here to help."
Nico's lip trembled, "I-I... love- I think."
"He's just leading you on," Jason sighs, hating that this was happening to Nico. He didn't deserve it. Jason pulled his best friend into a tight hug, feeling too overwhelmed with the need to protect the smaller man.
Nico saw Annabeth's head swiveled toward a crowd of people in search of her boyfriend. Percy was here, though, pinning Nico to a wall in the crowded area and trailing slopping marks down his neck.
Everything was swirling, moving in slow motion as Annabeth met his gaze, her eyes trailing the body that was against him. Her mouth was agape, and then, it was a snarl. She didn't walk over right away, as if to correctly interpret what was happening.
Percy mouthed back up to Nico's ear, "I don't like you with Will."
Nico closed his eyes, "Then, who do you like me with?"
"No one," Percy slurs, "you're mine."
"No," Nico's voice wavers slightly, "You're Annabeth's. I'm not yours and you aren't mine, Percy."
Percy looks up, dumbfounded by the response, and Nico isn't looking into the big blue orbs that plead silently for him, no. He stares right at Annabeth and doesn't care if she sees his tears fall.
She looks conflicted, watching them interact. Nico pulls Percy into one last embrace before pushing him away and walking with his head held high.
The quiet of Nico’s shared apartment was broken be a knock on the front door. He hardly shifted, all too engrossed in scratching his arm raw. He pays extra attention to the fading scars of track marks he acquired at parties and dive bars. The itch has been there since Jason force him to go cold.
Four months since the last hit. That was three weeks since he’d last seen-
The knocking gets louder.
Nico continues to ignore it.
Percy and Jason sit down awkwardly next to each other. Jason attempts to feign being fine, leaning back casually in his chair and sipping on the coffee shop’s crappy house blend. He’s dressed in the fraternity sweatshirt and jeans, something he wore yesterday and never took off. He’s been too busy lately, trying to handle Nico’s recent mood swings and recent likeness to throw up anything Jason’s been feeding him.
“So,” Jason drawled, “Why’re we here, Percy?”
The man looks down, seemingly embarrassed by the question. “I, uh…” He says slowly. “I broke up with Annabeth.”
Jason nods, “Yeah, you guys do that often.”
“No,” Percy’s angered by that. The truth. “For good.”
Jason’s staring at him plainly. “And I care because-“
“Because I’m going to talk to Nico.” He says curtly.
Jason stares, slightly dumbfounded but mostly angry. He snarls a remark before leaving Percy, who seems unfazed by Jason’s reaction.
There’s more knocks on the apartment door. Nico sighs, his arm is red and tender when his nails finally leave his skin. He shuffles to the door, opening it slowly.
“Uhm,” Nico stutters, “what?”
Percy looks disheveled, tired and slightly panicked, still Nico finds it’s a good look on the man. After not seeing him for months, Nico’s heart lurches when they’re eyes meet. Percy does something that looks like he’s trying to smile, but it’s weak.
“Baby,” he whispers. Nico’s stuck to the floor, the door creaks open more, and he tensely reaches forward. It’s like the crack that shatters the dam and both of them rush to meet each other. Percy’s gripping him tightly, Nico’s grabbing at his hair as their mouths connect and it’s rushed and everything hurts perfectly. Nico’s sure he’s crying and his chest constricts when Percy reaches up to wipe the tears from his cheeks.
Nico pulls Percy in and the door hits its frame with a loud slam as the hallway is emptied again.