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    Aceinthehole
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The Hidden Ones: Resurrection - 32. A Push in the Right Direction

---Ryder---

I’ve spent so many nights in this home. So much time buying more and more shit to surround myself with. As though that would help. As though that would fill the hole that was opening inside. I thought buying a house on the beach would make me happy, but all it did was remind me of my first trip with Teddy. I thought placing my platinum records all over would make me proud, but all it did was make them look hollow, like any other poster or picture someone might hang. I put in a movie theater and studio to try and distract my wandering mind, but all that did was remind me I was alone.

I built my dream house and made sure to include everything I thought I loved. Yet, I was never actually happy in this home until the Haners arrived. Until Oliver’s chaotic screams filled the halls, and Teddy’s cautious words warned me about everything.

Yet, no matter how much I care about them. No matter how happy they make me. My mind will always be around to try and spoil the fun.

“Come on Ry,” Teddy gently shook me. “Time to get up, you can go lie on the beach if you really want.” As I turned towards him I saw concern and disappointment fill his eyes. “So even on vacation, huh?” He asked, instantly recognizing my depression.

“Push yourself too hard yesterday?” He asked, but we both already knew the answer. “Okay, well you take as much time as you need.” He exhaled before laying a kiss on my head. “We can even go to the steakhouse tonight if you’re feeling up to it. Whatever will help you feel better.”

I wanted to hit him with a smart comment, to make him smile or laugh, but as I opened my mouth nothing came out. Static swarmed my mind as I shut my eyes and let out a whimper. What is it Dr. Pierre tells me? Embrace it? Face it head on?

Yeah well I wonder if he knows what the hell this feels like. I wonder if that’d be so easy for him to say if he was depressed. Just embrace my depression. Just go right into the pain and hopelessness. And why? Because he thinks I have the support system to help me deal with it? No. No, because I’ve spent the past thirteen years running from it and look where it got me.

Come on Ryder, wake the fuck up. Handle your shit like a man. But as I tried my hardest to roll out of bed all I found myself doing was rolling onto my back.

“He-hey.” A nervous young voice called out. “Teddy told me you weren’t feeling well today.” He gulped, still put off by my depressive episodes. He’s tried to help me through a few, but I can always tell they’re hard for him to understand.

“I had a lot of fun yesterday.” He forced out. “I’m actually kind of glad my parents left me with you and Teddy. It-it’s like I have two really cool older brothers.” He tried to offer, but fell discouraged as my eyes stayed fixed on the ceiling.

“Thank you for taking us here.” He began once more. “I think we really needed it. I, I haven’t seen my parents this happy in a long time. I haven’t seen Teddy this happy in a long time.” He shook his head. “Actually, when you showed up I met a new Teddy, and I-I like this Teddy so much better than the old one.” Oli sat on the side of the bed and thought it all over. “Maybe you don’t see it, but you, somehow you’re pulling us all together again. We feel like more of a family with you than we ever did without you.”

I gulped hard as I hard those words and finally found the strength to sit up. “Ryder?” Oli gently let out as I reached out and ruffled his hair. “Are you okay?” I shook my head no but kept my silence. “Should I go get Teddy?” Once more I shook my head and gestured towards the black book on the night stand. “You want this?” Oli asked as confusion dripped into his face. “You want to write!” He exclaimed, handing me the book and a pen.

Oli began to excitedly ramble on as I pulled open the worn thin books. Pages and pages of loose leaf were stuffed into it as I desperately tried to keep it alive for as long as possible. I filled it up a long time ago, but that doesn’t mean I can keep forcing pages into it.

“You need something to write on!” Oli exclaimed, jumping up and grabbing a book off one of my dressers.

He eagerly watched as I set up a paper against the book and began to scribble ideas on it. Shock entered his eyes as I quickly crumbled up the paper and threw it on the floor before taking another and starting all over again.

“What was wrong with that?” Oli asked, staring at the paper ball. As he went to pick it up I gently grabbed his arm and shook my head. “Okay, okay.” He shrugged.

I could barely believe it as Oli patiently watched me for nearly two hours. I wanted to let him help, I wanted to teach him how to write, but I just didn’t have the energy. Not today.

“Oliver!” His mom shouted, searching through the house. “Oli!” She continued, growing closer and closer. “Oh.” She exhaled, leaning in the bedroom. “I, why don’t you leave Ryder alone?” She asked, surprised to see me sitting up and writing.

“It’s okay.” I finally spoke, nearly sending Oli jumping off the bed out of surprise. “We’re about to put music to the lyrics anyway.”

“Really?!” Oli exclaimed, trying his hardest to take a peek at the words I had written.

“If you want.” I offered as he quickly began to nod his head.

“Ryder.” Mrs. Haner sighed. “You’re on vacation, you shouldn’t have to work or babysit Oli.”

“When it’s time to write it’s time to write.” I shrugged with a sigh. “And Oli is a better drummer than me anyway, he’s practically doing me a favor.”

“Really?!” Oli exclaimed as he jumped to his feet.

I slowly nodded my head. “Go downstairs and arrange the drums how you want them.” I instructed, sending him flying out of the room.

“We really appreciate how you treat him,” Mrs. Haner began. “But you really don’t have to watch him every second of the day.”

“I was being serious.” I said as I stood up. “He’s a better drummer than me.”

“He’s thirteen.” She exhaled, not believing I was serious.

“I know, but his command of the drums, it’s something else.” I shook my head. “How much does he practice?”

She tried her hardest to think it over before letting out a sigh “God only knows.” She surrendered. “You’ve seen him, he’ll play all day if we let him. Some nights if I wake up to get water he’ll have snuck downstairs to practice more. His hands are already hard as rocks from it.”

“He’s obsessed.” I explained as she quickly nodded her head. “I was the exact same way when I was his age.”

“Does it ever get better?” She sighed, part worried, part proud.

“Only worse.” I shook my head. “But when you’re as good as he is, you have the chance to change music.”

“You honestly believe that?” She asked, once more trying to sniff out bullshit.

“He mixes genres the way all the great drummers did.” I nodded my head. “He thinks like no one I’ve ever met before. Sporadic and chaotic.”

“That’s not a good thing.” She tried to remind me, but I shook my head once more, trying my hardest to dispel the idea.

“It’s not good in the world society has built.” I tried to explain, as I wandered towards the door. “He’s not meant for school nine to five, or any set of rules. He’s meant to express himself and learn through his curiosity. I, I know you, Harry and Teddy don’t believe I actually want to start a band with him.” I exhaled. “But that youthful creativity, that curiosity, it’s something that gets killed when you grow up.”

“So you want to make music with him because he’s creative?” She tried to understand as I walked past her.

“No.” I rejected. “Because he’s crazy.” I explained, quickly making my way downstairs.

“Look who’s up!” Teddy exclaimed with a smile. “Want to go,”

“Can’t.” I interrupted. “Have to go write music with Oliver.”

“Are you serious?” He threw his hands up. “Remember we’re not supposed to work on vacation?”

“Music works on its own time. I’ll be done in like an hour or two.” I dismissed, pulling open the basement door.

“Do you at least feel better?” He groaned, trying his hardest to maintain eye contact.

“A little.” I swayed my head, still feeling my depression trying it’s hardest to claw into my mind. “Singing will help.”

“Don’t push yourself!” Teddy shouted as I shut and locked the door behind me.

As I made my way down the steps I found Oliver set up and ready to go. His smile was the widest I’d ever seen it as he sat behind two bass drums with the Messiah logo on them. He was made for this, and that was never more clear than it is right now.

“What do we work on first?” He excitedly yelped.

I shook my head, and handed him the lyrics I had just written. “Usually I write the music first, but the words, they just flowed today.”

“Is this going to be a Messiah song?” He asked, eager to learn what he could.

“Messiah is dead, remember?” I lied, knowing my plan for one last album needed to stay hidden from him. “This is our first song.”

“Then why’d you write the lyrics without me.” He muttered, starting to read them over.

“I’m not writing lyrics with you.” I shook my head. “You write your own songs, and I’ll write mine.”

“But I,”

“That’s non-negotiable.” I shook my head. “I can teach you, but that’s it.”

He grumbled something, but it was clear all his focus was on the lyrics. “What riff did you have in mind?”

“I don’t know.” I shook my head, picking up a guitar and taking a seat. “Something like this.” I exhaled, playing a dark heavy rift I had written but never used. Oli rolled his eyes and shook his head. “You don’t like it?”

“I thought you said this wasn’t Messiah.” He muttered, with a shake of his head.

“This isn’t.” I insisted.

“Well that riff sure as hell sounds like Messiah.” He rolled his eyes. “You’re so boring, think, think, think more fun.”

“Fun?” I repeated. “My music’s serious, not fun Oli.”

“Exactly!” Oliver cried out. “You need a change. I want, it-It needs to be one big contradiction. It needs to be ironic, it needs to be sarcastic. It needs to be an in your face fuck you that sounds happy.”

“What did you have in mind?” I asked as a small smile spread across his face.

He read over the lyrics one more time before placing them down and starting off slow. “Kind of a calm rock intro with those lyrics.” He yelled over the beat he was starting. Suddenly he transitioned into a rapid fun beat. One that pushed the pace but kept that happy feeling he wanted. As he left where the chorus would be he returned to the calm intro, except this time he layered in drumming that hinted at the chorus.

“Like that.” He proudly sat up. “Now come on old man, show me what you’ve got.”

Writing with Oli was the most challenging thing I’ve had to do in my music career. He’s not like Brandon, Zach, Tommy or Joe. He doesn’t accept what I tell him. Everything needs to be new, everything needs to be exciting. But maybe this is exactly the push I need to get myself back on track. Maybe this is the change I’ve been waiting for.

“Alright.” I exhaled as we hammered out the majority of the song. “Let’s sleep on it, and wrap the rest up tomorrow.”

“Promise?” He asked, reluctant to stop.

“Promise.” I quickly nodded. It’s been nearly two and a half hours and his attention has barely faded. When he starts to lose focus he just starts drumming, as though he’s already learned how to handle his distracting thoughts. I get that he’s a smart ass in school, but I swear if we put him in a music school he’d be a genius.

“You going to try and cook for us again tonight?” He immediately teased, finally putting away the drum sticks.

“Nope, me and Teddy are going out.” I shrugged. “You’re stuck going out with your parents.”

He threw his head back and groaned. “Can’t you take me with you?”

“Not tonight.” I quickly rejected. “You know I like hanging out with you, but me and Teddy need some one on one time.”

“That’s dumb, you’re always together in the first place.” He muttered.

“We are, but, but think of you and Mark.” I began, trying to put it into words he understood. “No matter how much you talk to him, you still want to talk to him more.”

“Do not.” He lied as a strong blush entered his face.

“It’s okay to admit you like him.” I couldn’t help but laugh. “I love Teddy.” I proudly announced.

“You better.” He grumbled, shooting me a serious look. “If you hurt him I’ll kill you.” He warned.

“Where did that come from?” I asked as he tried his hardest to intimidate me.

“Nowhere.” He shook his head, but it was obvious he had been thinking about it. “I just like the new Teddy is all.”

“I’m telling him!” I teased, throwing Oli into a fit.

“Don’t you dare!” He argued. “You have such a big mouth!”

“I’m just kidding.” I waved off, as we both stood up and headed towards the stairs. “You’re so sensitive.”

“I’m sensitive?” Oli asked. “Have you ever listened to your music?”

“You love my music.” I defended as we finally resurfaced from the basement.

“I know, but it is kind of whiny.” He cackled as Harry shot him a stern look.

“One recording session and Oli is already telling you how it’s done?” Harry asked in a sigh.

“Something like that.” I shrugged, looking outside at the man lying on the beach. “Has he really been relaxing?”

“Yup.” Harry nodded. “I think hell’s freezing over as we speak.”

I couldn’t help but smile and run upstairs to get changed into my own bathing suit. When I finally managed to get to the beach Teddy was sitting up and talking to his mom as Oli happily swam around the ocean.

“I thought you were getting a lifeguard?” Teddy prodded in a serious look.

“I am.” I nodded, having forgotten my promise to him. “He starts tomorrow.”

“Sure.” Teddy rolled his eyes. “You going to forget to put on sun screen next?”

“I, no.” I lied, looking around for a bottle. “I was just going to do that.”

“Oli was playing around with it last I saw.” He shook his head. “Which means it could be anywhere.”

I let out a sigh and began searching. As I finally found it I saw him glance over then right away.

“Hiding it? Really?” I shouted to him. “That wasn’t even a good hiding place. It wasn’t even buried.”

“Still took you a while.” He teased with a smile. I guess if this is going to be his revenge it’s not all that bad. I can take him moving around some stuff for a week or two.

I tried to quickly spread it on, eager to go relax in the ocean for a little bit. My minds finally starting to clear, and nothing is better for that than floating in the ocean for a while.

“Wait, you missed your back.” Teddy lectured, taking the bottle from me. “Come here.” He instructed, squirting it into his hand and beginning to massage my back. “Ry, what kind of sun screen is this?” He asked. “It smells, funky.”

“It does not.” I childishly insisted.

“Smell this.” He instructed, handing it to his mom.

As his mother took a whiff I saw her eye brows raise. “That’s disgusting.” She remarked, leaning back. “It smells, it smells like mayonnaise.”

“What?” I asked as Teddy let out a sigh.

“I think someone finally got their revenge.” Teddy explained, pointing to a staring Oliver.

“OLI!” I shouted at the top of my lungs.

“That’s what you get Sullivan!” He cried out in laughter. “Don’t worry, it has no artificial flavors!” He cackled, letting himself fall back into the water.

“Ryder.” Teddy sighed, looking me up and down. “How did you not notice?”

“I don’t know, I didn’t think to smell it!” I exclaimed as a blush filled my face. “It rubbed in just fine.”

“He rubbed it in?!” Oli exclaimed, close enough to listen in on us. “You’re such a moron!”

“I’m going to kill him.” I sighed, slowly starting to walk towards the water.

“No! Get out of here! Mayo Monster!” He childishly teased, swimming to the other side of the roped in area.

I quickly jumped in after him before finally catching him and lightly throwing him. “What did I say about wrestling yesterday?” Teddy shouted from the shore.

“What’s that?” Oli asked as I picked him up again. “We can’t hear you!” He shouted in laughter as I threw him once more.

What the hell am I going to do with this kid? So much chaos in one small person. Yet, so much love. He’s going to absolutely drive me crazy. But he gives me hope that one day, well maybe, maybe I’ll actually know how to be a father. Maybe one day Teddy and I will actually be able to raise kids of our own. Maybe it’ll finally all work out.

***********************************************************************************

The day flew by just like it did yesterday. Messing around in the ocean, lounging around on the beach. Pretty soon all my depressive thoughts from the morning had fallen by the way side. It’ll always be something I struggle with, and some days will be worse than others. But maybe I do have a strong enough support system to be consistently happy. Maybe for the first time in my life I’m truly happy. Maybe I’ve finally found that family I’m looking for.

“What are you thinking about?” Teddy giggled noticing me staring off as we walked into the five star restaurant.

“Nothing.” I forced a smile.

Teddy went to say something but as he looked around the restaurant I saw the topic change in his head. “Did you make reservations?”

“Who needs em?” I shrugged, waiting for our turn to talk to the hostess.

“Us evidently.” Teddy sighed. “The waits going to be forever.”

I couldn’t help but laugh and roll my eyes. “Your wait is going to be around an hour and twenty minutes.” I heard the hostess tell the couple in front of us.

“Forget that.” Teddy exhaled. “We’ll have to come back,”

“Just shhhh.” I hushed stepping up to her. “Table for two please.”

“Do you have a reservation?” She asked, but as she looked up her face changed. “Oh! Mr. Sullivan, I, just let us set you up a table. It should be ready in five minutes.”

“Thank you.” I smiled, but saw Teddy’s stare burning a hole in me as we stepped aside.

“How often do you eat here?” He demanded.

“Not that often, I’m just famous.” I shrugged, not knowing what else to say.

“Well that’s not right.” He protested as his moral compass got the better of him.

“Okay, but I have to deal with all the negatives of fame, so I might as well get to enjoy this little positive.” I pleaded. He went to argue but as his stomach rumbled he shook his head. “I’ll make it up to you.”

“Promise?” He asked, finally letting his smile show.

“Promise.” I nodded my head as the hostess waived us over and led us to our table. It’s not exactly right for me to get special treatment, but if it means treating Teddy well I don’t care.

As I sat down across from him I couldn’t help but smile. “What’s that goofy look for?” He sighed, trying his hardest to hide the smile that was growing.

“Nothing.” I shrugged, looking down at the menu. “We’ve just come a long way since our first date at the barn.”

“You got special treatment then too.” Teddy reminded me. “You ever think we’d make it back like this?”

“I dreamed we would.” I replied in an honest breath. “I don’t think you know how badly I missed you.”

Teddy nodded his head but I could tell the subject bothered him. “Then why’d you wait?” He finally asked.

I took a deep breath and shook my head. “I wasn’t ready to come back yet.” I replied drawing a roll of his eyes. “I’m serious. I-I was, I don’t know why Teddy, but I needed those self-destructive days. I needed to get it all out of my system. I needed to learn that throwing myself pity parties wasn’t the answer.”

“And you couldn’t’ve done that with me by your side?” He grumbled, as the conversation grew serious.

“Honestly? No.” I exhaled, giving him the hard truth. “I needed to be alone, and I guess I’m just lucky you forgave me for that.”

“Yeah.” He shook his head.

“Think about it.” I provoked. “If I came back at twenty-five with my heavy drug problem and you were in medical school, what would you have done? Would you have been willing to have had that big a distraction?”

“I-I don’t know, it’s,”

“Because you were barely able to accept me last month.” I tried to remind him. He nodded his head but stayed quiet. “I’m sorry Teddy.”

“I know.” He nodded looking up at me. “And I believe that. I believe that you never stopped loving me, because I never stopped loving you.” He confessed. “Ask Blake, every guy I tried to date after you was basically just a rip off you.”

“You could do so much better.” I shook my head with a bashful smile.

“No I can’t.” He said, looking up into my eyes. “You’re everything I want, and I guess. I guess it just bothers me because it feels like we wasted thirteen years.”

“You can’t think of it like that.” I tried to comfort. “Do I wish I could go back and clean up my act? Hell yeah. Do I regret what I did to you? You better fucking believe it. But at the same time we both did a lot during those years. You’re thirty-one and leading a part of an emergency room! Our love life isn’t perfect, but you, you didn’t waste those years.”

Teddy nodded his head but looked down to hide his blush. “You always know what to say Ryder Sullivan.”

“I’ve got a strong man behind me.” I smiled, causing his blush to grow heavier.

“I should be the once saying that.” He shook his head. “People at the hospital ask what it’s like to date you?”

“Oh yeah?” My smile grew wider. “What do you say? Tough?”

“I tell them all how sweet you are.” He said, looking back into my eyes. “I tell them you watch my little brother, sing to me, hold me, I told them about your Christmas gift.”

“Teddy.” I groaned with a blush.

“Cait almost cried for me.” He giggled. “They can’t believe that bid bad rock star they saw all over the news has a soft spot.”

I nodded my head and thought it all over. As I looked deeper into his eyes I realized that he really was proud to have me. Hell! He brags at work! I’ve never met a person who’s proud to be dating a depressed addict, but I guess that’s not how Teddy sees me. He doesn’t see me for all my mistakes. No, he sees who I can be. Now I remember why I’ve been pushing myself so hard to get better. Because he believes I can, and that, it’s all I’ve needed.

Copyright © 2018 Aceinthehole; All Rights Reserved.
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So I got a notification that chapters 32 & 33 posted but I only have access to one...:,(. Thought I was getting an early birthday present.

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The best chapter so far. It shows how much they’ve grown. The most honest conversation to date.

The beginning shows nothing could take the place of Teddy. Stuff is just stuff. Failure and mistakes are life’s greatest teacher.

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A wonderful chapter!  On the one hand, we see Ryder continuing to struggle with his depression, but on the other, we see him contrasting his depression to the things that he really loves in life--and it turns out to be people, not possessions.  He is amazed that Teddy loves him even though he is a "depressed addict"; and he would never be the "Mayo Monster" if Oli didn't think of him as an older brother. The Haner family has filled the void, and for the first time, Ryder sees hope that he can be happy.

 

Further, while Ryder loves Teddy, Oli has become his inspiration musically, and Ryder has acknowledged to himself that Oli is a musical genius:  Ryder may wind up on top once again, but it is clear that Oli will be helping to point the way and that they will both rise to the top together.  

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The holiday is healing the Haners and Ryder and Oliver had picked up on this , he’s aware , maybe consciously for the first time , that his family was quite brocken before. Not telling him about the final Messiah album , is probably not a good idea , he takes things quite literally. 

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Oli said what I’ve been saying, that Ryder helps the Haners come together in a way they hadn’t been since Oli was born!  ;-)

 

Ryder appears to have turned a corner and is on his way back from the abyss. Between Teddy’s loving nagging and Oli’s enthusiasm and energy, Ryder is getting exactly what he needed! And he’s recovered enough to start writing a new song with Oli!  ;-)

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I haven't commented in awhile, but I am still really enjoying Teddy and Ryder getting back together. I am also enjoying the interactions between Oliver and Teddy, and Oliver and Ryder. I was impressed that Ryder convinced the whole family to go to the beach. It seems it has been healing for all of them. I look forward to whatever is next, and I wonder how long we readers get to enjoy this story before you're done. No need to answer the last part, if you know. I was just thinking as I typed. Thanks.

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Mayonnaise... yuck. It's only good for a sandwich and crawfish dip sauce. 

I'm glad they're all helping and growing up and coming together. And it's just all so beautiful.

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Love this chapter... Not a very bright comment, or original, but love pretty much everything in it. Ryder growth and realisation that he is responsible for himself and to deal with it  (don't want to sound unsympathetic, for from it, but unfortunately with depression no matter how much psychiatrist, medicine or supportive friends, there is always a part of it that's "suck it up and deal with it", that one has to manage for himself). Love Olive speech to Ryder and the start of a new attitude, sure still crazy, but more open (a good family my teach him to open to "good emotional" too, not only anger). Love the new approach to music that Oliver is forcing Ryder. I might be biased as I don't like hard Rock and metal, but I respected and admired Ryder's commitment to it. However that's was not only the music that he liked, was the music of his dead parents, his pains, his bullying, and his despair. I always thought that in the path to happiness, he would have to leave that behind. Now I can almost imagine them doing strange things, they will sing and mix rock, punk, indie, pop, and probably even some "world music" sounds like caribbean or African beats. And they will have happy songs, sad songs, maybe dance songs, but above all "real" songs, no pretence. And they will still be the best, as they will not receive a "dead" genre, but create a new one.

I even love that Teddy is happier and learning how to relax, even without Ryder close to him.

God I am rambling, sorry people :D

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Oliver has grown to see Ryder as a big brother and am afraid  he is going to feel betrayed when he realise that Ryder still want another record with Messiah. I don't think he will understand Ryders need to do so. 

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3 hours ago, lara said:

Oliver has grown to see Ryder as a big brother and am afraid  he is going to feel betrayed when he realise that Ryder still want another record with Messiah. I don't think he will understand Ryders need to do so. 

But couldn’t they add a second percussionist to Messiah? There are other groups with two drummers in them (but please don’t ask me to remember their names). Or they could trade off drumming duties for various songs.  ;-)

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5 hours ago, droughtquake said:

But couldn’t they add a second percussionist to Messiah? There are other groups with two drummers in them (but please don’t ask me to remember their names). Or they could trade off drumming duties for various songs.  ;-)

Right now, Messiah has no drummer, as Tommy developed cancer (which is also, most likely, one of the reasons that the band stopped playing). I wonder where they might find a replacement.... -_-

Edited by travlbug
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16 hours ago, travlbug said:

Right now, Messiah has no drummer, as Tommy developed cancer (which is also, most likely, one of the reasons that the band stopped playing). I wonder where they might find a replacement.... -_-

Oooh now that's just tragic......team baby Oli then

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