Dwight Houston and Ethan Brightman are in love. Nothing could ever come between them, not until the car accident. Ethan loses all memory of being with Dwight but can love truly conquer all? Can Dwight find a way to trigger Ethan’s memories?
Meanwhile, Ethan is struggling with strange feelings he never thought he’d have. He’s drawn to Dwight and knows thaat there is something important there, something he’d forgetting, something just out of reach. If he could just figure out what it was.
Characters from CP Coulter’s ‘Dalton’
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Evan wasn’t sure what to think, walking into the room to see that. He only heard the last part of Dwight’s outburst but it hurt just hearing it. He couldn’t quite imagine how the hunter was feeling. If Ethan really couldn’t remember, Dwight would be heartbroken. He didn’t know how he was supposed to console him, but he had to focus on Ethan right now. Ethan looked so confused, so scared.
Evan quickly made his way to the bed, grabbing Ethan’s hand and doing his best to smile reassuringly. His skin was already gaining it’s colour. Evan felt so relieved. He was really okay, “I was so worried about you.”
“What the hell is going on?” Ethan rubbed the bandage on his head, groaning softly, “He’s mad, right? This is all some crazy practical joke that you somehow got Dwight in on, isn’t it?”
Evan looked at the floor, biting his lip. He didn’t know how he was supposed to tell Ethan. He wasn’t sure exactly what he was supposed to say. He looked up into Ethan’s soft blue eyes, taking a deep breath. He looked so scared, so confused. He really had no idea what was going on. He couldn’t be sure before because this was Ethan and he could very easily play a really terrible joke on them. “I…umm…what’s the last thing you remember?”
“Waking up here.” Ethan shrugged, scratching the back of his neck as he took a moment to try and figure it out. What happened before he was here, “I…I was with you…at Dalton, and we went to bed like we always did, and then I woke up here.” He frowned, tilting his head to the side, “But that doesn’t feel right when I say it out loud.”
Evan grabbed the chair, pulling it to Ethan’s side and took a moment to find his thoughts, “Okay. This is going to be really weird for you, but you are in love with him. Maybe you don’t remember it but you have to feel it, even a little bit.”
Ethan stared at the door Dwight had just walked out. Maybe. It was possible, wasn’t it? In some way? He always thought he was kind of cute, the way he’d panic over the most trivial of things. Ethan always found his need to protect others very endearing…but love? Could he ever really love Dwight? That seemed like such an extreme. He still wasn’t sure it was true, but Evan said so. His brother would never lie to him.
He couldn’t speak much higher than a whisper, “I feel…drawn to him. I want to look after him.”
Evan smiled fondly, “That means a part of you still remembers, right? We’ll talk to the doctors but I’m sure your memories are going to come back in time. Try not to give up on him while you wait, okay? He needs you just as much as you need him.”
“I don’t need him.”
“Oh believe me, you do.” Evan chuckled softly, gently squeezing Ethan’s hand, “You’ll realise that soon enough.”
“No. I need you. I need my brother.” Ethan pulled Evan closer, wrapping his arms around him and hugging him tightly, “You weren’t here when I woke up…”
Evan smiled sadly, “I wanted to be, but if you had your memories, you would’ve wanted Dwight here more than me and they only let one of us stay.”
“Never.” Ethan squeezed Evan tightly, burying his face in his neck, “No one will be more important to me than you. Maybe, if this is true, he might be equal in importance, but never more.”
Evan’s heart swelled, unable to stop the bright smile that slipped onto his lips. He and Ethan were always so close, he was alwaystrying to look out for him. Sure, he was only two minutes older than Ethan but that made him the big brother. That meant he had to protect him. He sighed softly, emotions bubbling up inside him and his voice cracked, “I love you.”
“I love you too.” Ethan looked up at Evan, smiling brightly. He brushed hair from Evan’s eyes, looking directly into them as he spoke very sure of himself, “I’m sorry I scared you, but I’m not going anywhere.”
Tears pricked at Evan’s eyes but he couldn’t let them fall. He wouldn’t. “You promise?”
Ethan chuckled softly, nodding, “I promise.”
Evan couldn’t hold it in anymore. Those two simple words were enough to make him break because he needed Ethan. He needed him so much and there was no way he was going to let him go anywhere anyway. Ethan’s reassurance made the whole situation seem more real somehow. He hugged Ethan as tightly as he could, tears falling down his cheeks, “I was so scared we were going to lose you.”
“I’m so sorry.” Ethan gently rubbed his hand along Evan’s back, trying to reassure him, “I’m here. I’m right here and I always will be.”
Evan took a long shuddering breath, trying to stop himself crying. He was meant to be the strong one but there he was, crying. That’s the way it usually seemed to be, though. He may have been the older brother, he may have been the one who was supposed to look after them and keep them strong, but most of the time, it was Ethan keeping them strong. It was Ethan comforting him. It was always Ethan. He would be nothing without Ethan and that thought itself almost scared him except that was the way it had always been. He didn’t know any different. It would do anything for his brother and he knew Ethan would do just the same.
Ethan closed his eyes for a moment, trying to figure out everything that was happening. Maybe he was in love with Dwight, but how? When did it happen? How did it happen? What got them to this point? If it was really love, how could he just forget it so easily?
“W-Will you tell me about him? About Dwight and I?” His voice went quiet, like he wasn’t sure he wanted to be asking for it. He wasn’t sure any of it was true yet. It all seemed like some kind of terrible dream.
“I…I can only tell you the stuff I know which is the before…and a little of the beginning stuff.” Evan looked a little apologetic, shrugging, “You don’t give me all the details of you and Dwight - and I am extremely grateful for being kept in the dark, thank you.”
Ethan blushed. He wasn’t sure why. He just did. What was there to be embarrassed about though? This was his brother. He knew everything about him. Nodding quickly, he sat up further, eyes intent on Evan, “Tell me. Please.”
Evan nodded slowly, shuffling in his seat, trying to figure out where to start. Where had Ethan and Dwight started? He didn’t really know for sure where to begin, “I…umm…well, you started talking about Dwight after we caught him singing. You kept saying that you thought he had the most beautiful voice you’d ever heard.” Evan smiled fondly, remembering he way Ethan would flop backwards into the bed, grabbing a pillow and clinging to it as he grinned, talking about the way Dwight sung that day.
“You would…you’d stop in the middle of the hallway. You’d grab my arm to get me to stop with you, and I’d just watch as you tilted your head a little and watch Dwight walk passed. I swear you drooled once. I don’t care that you won’t admit it.” Evan laughed.
Ethan blushed more, looking at the blankets. He bit his lip to stop himself smiling. It sounded nice, but that was just it. It sounded nice. It didn’t mean it was true. It didn’t mean he felt anything when Evan told him about it. He would admit that it made his heart flutter a little. It made him a little dazed and it made him think about Dwight a lot more but that didn’t mean love. That didn’t mean any of the feelings Evan was describing were necessarily real.
He chewed his lip nervously, “What else?”
Evan tilted his head a little, watching Ethan carefully, “Uh…well, you said to me that you had to do something. He was all you thought about, you were so crazy about him. You filled his room with roses. He got really scared when you did that. You know how paranoid Dwight can be. He sprayed you with his holy water. So you told him. You initiated everything.”
Ethan frowned, “So…he didn’t like me?”
“No! No, he did. He does. He’s just Dwight. Dwight never knows when he’s allowed to do things or whether or not he’ll make himself look stupid so he never does anything. He was very grateful when you finally made the first move.”
Ethan smiled softly, imagining how awkward Dwight would’ve been. That did make a lot of sense. Maybe it was true. Maybe he had initiated everything. Maybe he was crazy for Dwight. Maybe. “What happened after that?”
“You came back to our room and proceeded to tell me about how perfect his lips are. All night long.” Evan rolled his eyes, “Kept going on about how soft they are and warm and how good they tasted. Then you kept talking about how he was an amazing kisser for his first time. I swear, I was going to kick you out of the room.”
“Sounds amazing.” Ethan looked down at the ring on his finger, taking a deep breath. He twisted it gently on his finger, feeling unsure of himself.
“I sense a but.”
“No. Just…sounds too good to be true.” Ethan smiled a little sadly.
“It is true.” Evan grabbed Ethan’s hand, brushing his finger over his ring, “He is forever committed to you and you were to him. You are. You’ll remember soon. I know you will.”
“Can you…” Ethan bit his lip, unable to take his eyes away from the ring, “Can you check on him? I think I really upset him…”
“Oh. Right. O-Okay.” Evan held Ethan’s hand a little tighter, not wanting to let him go. Now he had his brother, he didn’t want to just leave him here all alone.
Ethan seemed to pick up on it right away. He squeezed Evan’s hand, smiling reassurinly, “Hey.” He made sure Evan was looking at him before speaking, “I know you’re scared but I’m right here and I’m not going anywhere.”
Evan nodded slowly, a soft smile tugging at his lips, “Right.” Evan reluctantly let go of Ethan’s hand, looking back at him for a moment as he left the room, “I’ll be right back. I promise.”
“I’ll be here.”
Evan nodded slowly. He opened the door, looking around for Dwight and his heart sank. Dwight was just by the door, his back to the wall. He’d sunk to the floor with his knees pulled to his chest and his head buried in them. His whole body was shaking. Dwight was taking it so hard. Much harder than Evan had expected. But then, he couldn’t imagine what Dwight was going through. To be so in love with someone and have everything taken away from you. Ethan and Dwight were inseperable, and then this happened.
He knelt down beside Dwight, brushing a hand over his back and causing him to flinch, “Hey…it’s okay.”
“Nothing’s okay.” Dwight murmured, his breath hitching as he continued to cry.
“Ethan still loves you.”
“No he doesn’t.” Dwight looked up at Evan, his eyes red, and blotchy. He had tears streaming down his face and his hair looked so messed up, there was no way of telling just how often he’d ran his fingers through it. “He said it himself, he doesn’t love me.”
“He didn’t mean it though. I-I mean…he did…but he didn’t. Not really. He just doesn’t remember, but he will.” Evan assured.
“You can’t know that.” Dwight felt sick. His stomach was in knots. It was as though his whole life for the past six months was a lie. It was like he had nothing left. The one thing he had was taken away and every moment disappeared with it. There would be no more trips to that café. There would be no more kisses in the halls. There would be no more waking up in each other’s arms and the thought of no more killed him.
“I do though. I do.” Evan sighed softly, wrapping an arm around Dwight, “He’s confused Dwight. Give him some time and he’ll remember. He needs to get used to everything first. Do what you can to remind him. Talk to him about things.”
Dwight buried his face in his knees once more, sobbing softly. He couldn’t do that though. How could he tell Ethan about a life he never had? If Ethan didn’t think it was real then it might as well have never been at all. It hurt so much but he couldn’t force it on him. This was like a second chance for Ethan, and he was going to say no instead. He could tell Ethan didn’t want him anymore.
Murmuring softly, Dwight’s voice was muffled, “He doesn’t want me anymore.”
“He’s wanted you since the day he met you.” Evan murmured, rubbing Dwight’s back soothingly, “He did. I remember. I could see it in the way he looked at you. So, if he still remembers you, that means he remembers that.”
“R-Really? He did?” Dwight looked up at Evan, a hopeful look in his eyes.
Evan looked down at the floor, biting his lip. Truth was, he had no idea. He didn’t know how long Ethan had liked Dwight. He had kept it all inside for so long, there was no real way to know for sure. He had to have liked him for a while before they got together though. He had to like him when they first met, to some degree. Evan couldn’t just crush that little shred of hope left inside Dwight.
He smiled reassuringly, nodding, “Of course he did.”
Dwight wiped at his tears, sniffling. He pulled Evan into a tight hug, in dire need of some human contact. He felt so lost. Normally at times like these, it was Ethan he’d turn to. Ethan would console him. Ethan would protect him. Ethan would find a way to make all the darkness become light again. He made it all feel right and now he was the one person he couldn’t go to. He felt so alone.
Taking a long, shaky breath, he murmured into Evan’s ear, “I can’t lose him.”
“You won’t.” Evan said sternly, looking right into Dwight’s eyes, “Just talk to him. Let him adjust and sooner or later, he’s going to believe you. He’s going to remember it.”
Dwight nodded, smiling softly, “O-Okay. I just hope he remembers. Some people never do.”
“He will.” Evan ruffled Dwight’s hair, trying to lighten the mood, “I know he’s going to remember, and if by some twist of fate, he doesn’t, then you’ll fall in love all over again. You and Ethan are for life. You’ll find a way to make it work.”
Dwight looked down at the floor. How? How in the world was he supposed to make it work if Ethan couldn’t remember? As long as Ethan couldn’t remember, Ethan didn’t love him and as long as Ethan didn’t love him, that was it. There was nothing he could do. He wouldn’t force himself on Ethan. He wanted Ethan to loe him unconditionally, he didn’t want it out of pity. He just wanted him. Completely. He wanted the guy he had fallen for. He wanted the guy who would pull him closer in bed, and the guy who would tell cheesy jokes when he was upset. Dwight just wanted the guy he’d given everything to.
“H-How are we getting him out of here, when they let him leave?” Dwight asked, his voice soft as he tried to stop thinking such terrible thoughts.
“I think…you don’t mind if I take him, do you?” Evan chewed on his lip nervously, “It’s just that he feels comfortable with me, it seems like the most obvious solution. I’d let you but that could be really awkward and uncomfortable. I don’t want to put you through that.”
“It’s okay. That makes sense.” Dwight sighed sadly. He used the wall to slide up to his feet, looking down at the floor, “I’m just going to go back to Dalton, okay?”
“You don’t have to leave, Dwight.”
The hunter chuckled sadly, “Yeah. I do. He doesn’t need me. I’m just making things more confusing for him. He would be better off if I wasn’t here. Besides, he has you to look after him. Just keep him safe, okay? I’m going to be fine.” Dwight smiled softly, it not quite reaching his eyes as he started walking down the hall. He looked back, “Hey Evan?”
“Yeah?” Evan crossed his arms over his chest.
“Tell Ethan…tell him…” Tell him I love him, he thought. Sighing sadly and shaking his head as he started walking away again, “Don’t worry.”