The days passed slowly, mostly because Ryan and I spent our days at home so I could take care of his wound. He was healing pretty nicely and I was happy that it wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been. I checked a couple times to make sure the bullet didn’t break apart when he was first shot and I happened to miss any pieces. Thankfully I found none so I just kept it clean re-bandaged it a couple times a day.
A week had gone by and we hadn’t been called in by the rest of the Fake AH Crew. I’m hoping nothing is wrong but it’s hard to tell at this point. But as luck would have it, my phone rang and I picked it up, seeing Geoff was calling.
“Yeah, Geoff?” I answered, Ryan looking up from his newspaper as he sat next to me, eyes narrow.
“Alright, we’re not gonna make a huge deal if you two just listen. Just come down here like usual and we’ll all just sit down and discuss what’s gonna happen here. I’m not completely off the ‘don’t kill them’ bit, so make sure you know your place. Get down here now,” Geoff muttered, hanging up before I could get a word in. I put my phone away and looked to Ryan.
“Guess it’s time to go, Rye-Bread…you ready?” I frowned.
“As ready as I’ll ever be,” he said dryly as he stood, grabbing his leather jacket and putting it on. He grunted as he shifted wrong but got it on. He picked his mask up, holding it in his hands, sighing as he once more pulled it over his head, hiding his face. I smiled weakly at him before we left together, we went to the back of the apartment, Ryan pulling his bike out and we hopped on, quickly taking off and riding through Los Santos.
Once we got there, we could tell most of the lights were off. We parked the bike and walked in together, everyone was there, staring at us as we came in the door. I did my best to ignore the stares and Ryan seemed to not notice at all, we walked past everyone and we sat in front of Geoff. He looked as bitter as always, but stress had seemed to have aged him a bit. Everyone was silent while Geoff stared us down.
The silence was almost deafening, I actually jumped a little when I heard sirens out in town from something going on. The break of silence seemed to get Geoff to talk as well.
“I’ve thought long and hard about everything that’s happened, boys. Do you honestly expect me to be okay with you two…or three I should say,” he mentioned as he glanced to Ray who only looked away, “for lying to me for all these years? To be okay with James fucking Haywood to be in my crew?”
I couldn’t think of anything to say, but Ryan did.
“I would say no on most situations. But I actually do think you to be okay with it. We proved time and time again that we’re the best of the best. I wanted to prove to myself that just because I was some rich kid, didn’t mean I couldn’t work for what I deserved. I’ve put my life on the line for this crew for years. So has Gavin. Of anyone here, you should be glad that we still want to be here, even after Gavin’s coma. You shouldn’t be okay with it, no, but we want you to be. Because you need us. Whether you like it or not.”
“Ryan..” I frowned.
“No, Gavin,” Geoff murmured, “he’s right. I do need you…which is why I’m letting you live and letting you stay in the crew.”
I stared at him, mouth open, “You’re serious!?”
“Gavin, you and Ryan have a strong bond to each other and to this crew. Everyone has their secrets. I have plenty of my own. You have yours. I thought about this all week, Gav, I trust you both…just don’t disappoint me.”
He stood after that, dismissing the rest of the crew. I turned to Ryan after everyone was gone and it was just us after we said our goodbyes to the others.
“Ryan, I um..I got another letter from Burnie. He’s getting angry, we need to go see him this weekend…” I said softly, Ryan hummed in thought.
“Alright, we’ll make a visit this weekend. I’m just worried about what he wants from you, Gavin. It can’t be good.”
“I know, Ry…but what choice do we have? He said he’d admit to Dan’s murder, we’ve got to at least hear him out. Please.”
“I didn’t say we weren’t going, let’s just go back home for now, we can talk more there. Come on, you can call the prison and have whoever’s working tell Burnie we’ll be there this weekend. That way you don’t have to talk to him yourself. Let’s get going,” he smirked as we walked out. I climbed into the car and made the call real quick just to get it over with so we wouldn’t have to worry about Burnie until this weekend.
We got back to our apartment, I stretched as we walked in, taking off my jacket and hanging it up. Ryan was behind me, pulling off his mask, face paint smeared all over himself. As he went to the kitchen to clean himself up a bit, I went to our room to change. I quickly got undressed and went to the closet, pulling out something lose that I could lounge around in. I went back to the kitchen where Ryan was, finding him in a bit of an odd situation.
“Uh…Ryan? Is your…hair tangled up on the faucet?” I asked. He was bent over the counter, one hand on the faucet and the other in his hair, “How the hell did you manage that? I told you that you needed a haircut.”
“Shut up Gav, come give me a hand here!” he huffed, I grinned and walked over, carefully pulling the tangles apart until he was free.
“What happened? Lose a fight to a sink, Love?”
“Fuck off,” he blushed, “face paint got into my hair so when I was trying to wash it out, some of it got caught because I didn’t realize I was near the damn thing.”
“Oh go grab a towel and dry your hair, I know how to fix this.”
He left and I started looking through our drawers, I know we had something somewhere….I just gotta find it.
He came back a few minutes later, towel in hand, I turned to face him holding up what I was looking for.
“What’s that?” He asked.
“A hair tie. One of Lindsay’s. She’s left them here before and sometimes I forget to give them back. Here, it’ll help with your hair problems. Your hair is so long it practically gets in the way of everything.”
I walked up to Ryan, taking his hand and pulling him to our bathroom. I grabbed one of my combs and started brushing through his hair. It was a mess but I did my best not to pull it too much or anything, just getting all the tangles out before using the hair tie and giving Ryan a lose ponytail. He wasn’t sure how to react but he seemed to like it.
“Uhh…” he started.
“Have you seen all the stuff I have for my hair? It’s just a thing I’m good at. Do you like it?” I smirked.
“It’s perfect, thanks,” he smiled at me. We decided to spend the rest of the night playing games, he was happy that Ray and I got some of the new stuff together, he was having a lot of fun playing.
And we played all through the night. I didn’t even notice until the sun was getting in my eyes as it was rising for the next day. We laughed at how we were up all night, so we decided to take the next few days off for ourselves until this weekend. We played into the next day, just having a good time. It was one of the more enjoyable weeks lately with everything that happened. Even if we do have to go see Burnie, I’m not letting it bother me right now. I’ve never been so relaxed, so happy. I truly enjoy just being with Ryan. He’s my entire world.
I wasn’t sure exactly how I should feel today, I’ve been focusing on having better days with Ryan but now that we’re driving to the prison, I have no idea what I should be feeling. I expressed my concerns to Ryan but he didn’t seem to worry too much.
“Well, what do you think you should be feeling? I can’t tell you what you should be feeling about this, just talk to me.”
“Ryan, where do I even start? I just have…a bunch of emotions swirling in me but there’s so much that I just feel….empty.”
Ryan thought about what I was saying for a moment, looking over at me with soft eyes.
“Then you feel empty. You’ll work through your emotions soon enough, just take deep breaths to help you stay calm and you’ll be fine. He can’t do anything to you, not ever again.”
“I guess you’re right, I’m sorry,” I sighed.
“You don’t need to apologize, Gavin, it’ll be alright. We’ll go see Burnie, see what he wants and whether or not we agree to it is a whole other matter, but then we leave. We won’t stay very long, please don’t get too worked up. I’ll be right there with you,” he smiled lovingly.
I felt a lot better as we pulled into the parking lot, but I still nervously grabbed onto his jacket as one of the guards showed us to the meeting room. We sat down and I took a few breaths to calm down but it was still pretty hard to calm down. We just stayed silent until two guards came out, Burnie between them.
They walked over to us and sat him down across from us, leaving his hands cuffed as they walked over to the door, leaving us three to our privacy.
“You know I don’t like it when you make me wait, Gavin,” Burnie started bitterly. I bit my lip but didn’t respond to his comment.
“What do you want, Burns? Why do you want Gavin and I here?” Ryan asked, getting on topic.
“Heh,” Burnie snickered, “Always wanting to get down to business. I always liked that about you Vagabond. Well like I told Gavin a while ago, I wanted you here because I’m going to make a deal with you two about my confession about Dan’s murder.”
“I-if you’re going to confess to his murder, what do you want from me?” I asked, raising an eyebrow. He smirked and looked over to me, I shuddered at the look in his eyes. I’ve seen that look before, when he knows he’s won. Why he does he have that look? I’m not sure I’m gonna like what he has to say.
“Gavin,” he smirked, “do you know why I brought you into my crew all those years ago?”
I opened my mouth to answer but I stopped. I remember he just came up to me and had me meet his crew. I wasn’t into the idea of being a gang so I tried to leave. One thing lead to another and he suddenly forced me in and started training me.
“I..uh..no. No I don’t know why. I-I never knew you actually had a reason,” I admitted to him.
“No, you wouldn’t. I never told you why. But now I am, I want you to listen and then I’ll tell you my conditions for my confession. Alright?”
“We don’t have time for your stupid stories, Burns. Just tell us your conditions so we can agree or not and get out of here,” Ryan snapped.
“I’m sorry, I thought the story of why I made Gavin’s life a living hell would be important to him. Do you not care about what he wants? Do you want to hear the story Gavin?” he turned back to me, that sickening purr in his tone. I looked between him and Ryan before reluctantly nodding. Ryan took a breath and Burnie smiled.
“Good choice…now let’s see, where to start?” he pondered out loud, obviously to just get under Ryan’s skin as Ryan snapped at him again to get on with it, his fists clenched.
“Ugh fine, to the point, I get it. Chill out Vagabond. I found Gavin at some point after he moved to Liberty City. I saw him out on the streets and I just had this feeling about him, intuition one could say. So I had my men watch him for a while, test him out. Just little things to tell how well his reactions were. And he seemed like he would be a great add to the Cock Bite gang. So after watching him for a couple months, I started to get close to him. Bump into him every once in a while and started to form a friendship with him.”
I sat there, my hands balled into fists as he started telling his story. I wasn’t sure where he plans on going with it but he’s already started about how he started becoming a friend of mine. Ryan only knows the violent relationship I had with Burnie, I never told him anything else. I was hoping that it could just all be forgotten on my part because he never asked about my past with him. I felt his eyes on me as I stared at Burnie. I might not know his whole story, but I know in what direction he plans on going with what he’s already said. I saw Burnie’s grin widen as I stared at him, hatred burning in my glare.
“Of course,” he continued, “it’s only so long that a friendship will grow until both parties want more. I mean it took almost a year to get that far, but soon enough I saw what he wanted. I started teaching him, training him for my gang, giving him just enough that he would stay at my side while I taught him. He would do so well, I openly admit at how proud of him I was. He learned fast and did whatever needed to get my approval.
“But soon enough, words of praise just wasn’t enough for poor little Gav. So we spent some extra time together that wasn’t just for practice and got to know him a little better. He told me about his life in England and I told him about my life. He got so flustered it was simply to die for, but I assume you already know what I’m talking about, Ryan.”
Ryan practically growled in hatred at him, I tore my eyes away from Burnie to look at Ryan. I saw how his jaw set, clenched together as he held himself back from jumping on Burnie. I felt the tears well up in my eyes but I did my best to hold them back.
“I see you just want me to get on with it, I get it. So anyway we hooked up, blah blah blah, we had our fun in the bedroom, same old stories you know? But it’s actually after he tried to leave is where the story really gets interesting. After I broke poor Gavin’s heart and forced him into the crew, he had so much hatred in his heart that I forced him to redirect that anger into his abilities. I didn’t just pick him up off the streets because he’d make a good fuck, I saw his potential and I took the opportunity. I trained him harder than I ever had before, getting him to improve or punished for failing. He learned pretty quick.
“But he had so much more potential than what I could train him to do, so I tipped off his friend Dan to come visit him, get him to pick Gavin up and gave him false hope he would be safe. But that backfired when I found out Dan was actually in the military, he wouldn’t let Gavin continue with gang activity so he had to be dealt with. So I did and brought Gavin back, again forcing him to refocus his hatred into his abilities. When I heard of this gang in Los Santos, The Fake AH Crew, and how powerful they were, I knew it would be perfect.”
I could feel the tears starting to stream down my cheeks, it was all him. Dan, the crew, everything. He planned out every little thing when I thought I was free. I’ve never felt this empty, it was hard not to sob out loud.
“I talked about how you guys were too tough for us to handle, said how we’d avoid Los Santos. That was all lies, only to drive Gavin to run to this city. Of course he’d feel safe in a city he thought we’d avoid at all costs. When in fact, we watched him the entire time. I sat back and enjoyed watching as you guys brought him in as one of your own, trained him and let him grow even more. I was so overcome with joy, you’d think I was a proud parent!
“Until YOU came along, Vagabond. My boys told me about how you grew… close to Gavin. I wasn’t too happy but I kept the hope that it’d be nothing. That didn’t seem to work, him falling in love with you was going to ruin all of my plans! Gavin tried saving you, try to make it right by avoiding you. But I knew it was already too late, you had him wrapped around your fingers and that would be it for him. So I took him back but…while I had him, while I punished him for all he did wrong…I saw…I saw that whether I spared your lives or ended them, you already ruined my plans for Gavin. He would’ve have been the best of the best, and under my control but you ruined EVERYTHING.”
“ENOUGH!!” I finally shouted, shaking in my seat, “Burnie…that’s enough. Just shut up!! That’s what you wanted from me!? To be your personal weapon!?”
“Gavin..” Ryan touched my shoulder.
“NO!!” I pulled away from him, standing, “I knew I was nothing to you after you started getting violent with me, but you truly felt NOTHING about me when I was there!? I was just to be trained until I was just a cold, heartless murderer for you!?”
“Not a thing,” Burnie smiled.
“THEN WHY AM I HERE NOW!? WHAT MORE COULD YOU WANT FROM ME!?”
“Gavin…please… calm down…” Ryan tried, gently taking my hand and slowly bringing me to sit next to him once more.
“Gavin…it’s true. I felt nothing for you and only trained you to be a weapon. True, my work was never done, but I still consider you one of my greatest creations,” he laughed.
My heart sank.
“Gavin you moron,” he laughed once more, “every part of you now is all because of me! I’m the one that trained you! I had you perfect your aim, learn the life of my crew, became a killer. And it was all me!”
“N-No…you’re wrong…th-that can’t be true…”
“Gavin, do you really think you’d be in the Fake AH Crew if you hadn’t been involved with me!? Face it, everything you had and have now….is all thanks to me. I made you! You’re one of my greatest creations! If you were to belong to anyone it would be me!! It was all me! All me!!”
Ryan had his arms around me right then. I weakly grabbed onto him as Burnie laughed triumphantly at my breakdown. I got up and was about to leave when Burnie stopped and called to me.
“Oh Gavin! Don’t you want to know what I want from you for my confession??”
I stood there, wrapping my arms around myself as I turned to him, nodding.
“I-I do. What do you want?”
“Gavin. I’ve been thinking about you ever since I was brought to this shit hole of a prison. Thought about how great I did with you. But I don’t want to miss a chance to see what I did first hand!”
“Quit wasting time and just tell him what you want Burns,” Ryan snarled.
“Fine…Gavin. I will admit to Dan’s murder and reveal where his body is. I’ve already worked this out with the lawyers and such but all in all….I want you to be the one who executes me. You’re going to be the one to end my life.”
“You….want me…. to kill you?”
“Did I stutter?”
“Burnie…I don’t understand…”
“Well since I lost to my own creation, it would be a disgrace to me to not be killed by you. You get your revenge and poor little Dan finally will go home. Isn’t that all you wanted? Cause then you get to live happily ever after with Vagabond here.”
Ryan stood up and came over to me, whispering lowly.
“It’s up to you, Gav. You don’t have to do this you know…”
“I know I don’t have to, but Dan…!”
“Shhh…I understand. Please know that I understand. But don’t let me make the choice for you. This is entirely up to you if you want to do this.”
I held onto his hands, leaning into his grasp as I thought about what I should do. I didn’t want to but I knew I had to. For Dan. I owe that to him for being unable to protect him. I pulled away from Ryan, going back to Burnie. I gave him a cold glare as I walked up, ignoring the smirk on his face as I lifted my hand up to him.
“You have a deal, Burnie. You admit to Dan’s murder and tell us where the body is. In return I will be your executor. Just like you want.”
After smirking at me and looking at my hand, he reached up with his cuffed hands, taking mine and shaking it. Suddenly he pulled me down over the table, whispering darkly into my ear.
“I look forward until our final meeting. Hope you enjoy the life I have given you. You shouldn’t waste a gift like this…”
The guards came over and separated us, Ryan at my side making sure I was okay. We left but Burnie wasn’t finished.
“Even when you get something you want, I’m still the winner here, Gav. I always get what I want.”
I covered my ears as Ryan led us out. He helped me into the car and got in himself and we left and went straight home. I couldn’t meet his eyes, I felt so ashamed. Burnie told him just enough and it was killing me. I felt the tears on my face and they didn’t help at all.
“R-Rye…Ryan I-I… I could’ve…I should’ve…” I tried to get the words out but they were stuck. How do I tell him that what Burnie said was true? Ryan grabbed my hand and didn’t say anything for a moment.
“It’s okay, don’t worry about it right now…” he said softly, gently stroking my hand with his thumb.
“But I am worrying about it now. How can I not? With what Burnie said-”
“That doesn’t matter right now, you are what matters right now. Let’s get home, where we’ll be safe. If you want to tell me, then you can. But wait until we’re home, then we can just be together.”
I nodded, holding onto his hand the rest of the ride home. I wouldn’t let him go as we walked up to our apartment and just held onto him while we were at the door. He hugged me so tightly that I just didn’t want to let go ever again. I just started sobbing into his chest and wouldn’t let go of him, he held me as close as he could, whispering words of love and sweet nothings to help soothe me. After a while he just lifted me up into his arms. I wrapped my legs around him a bit but otherwise did nothing. I felt him walk over to the couch and sat down, not once pushing me off of him.
“It’s okay, Gavin. Once he’s executed, it’ll all be over for good…you’ll never have to deal with him again…I’m so sorry he did this to you.”
“I should’ve told you…I should’ve told you…” I sobbed pathetically.
“No. You shouldn’t have,” he whispered, I pulled back and looked at him, my face an utter mess.
“What do you mean?” I asked.
“You had every right not to tell me. You don’t owe me a life story with Burnie. You thought you could trust him in the beginning. And he betrayed you in the worst of ways. You don’t ever have to feel like you have to tell me about every relationship you were in.”
“Ryan…” I tried to stop crying but I couldn’t, he smiled at me and pulled me against him.
“He’s wrong you know…” he murmured.
“He didn’t ‘create’ you and he doesn’t own you. You are your own person. And you were so strong, you survived your life with Burnie and because of that you were able to meet your family. The Fake AH Crew. You deserve to have a good life from now on and you get to have it now. You’re amazing, Gavin.”
“I don’t feel so amazing right now,” I frowned, resting against his chest.
“Maybe not, but I’m sure you will. And I’ll be right here with you the whole time. I love you so much.”
“I love you too, Rye-Bread,” I smiled softly.
A couple days later, I had gotten a letter in the mail about when Burnie would be executed. I was extremely anxious about it, but I was ready to put an end to it all. So the next week I prepared to head to the prison for the last time.
Burnie was already prepared to be executed from what I could tell. I tried to stay calm, I never thought that I would be able to do this. I was shown to the room where Burnie was to be executed, it was oddly satisfying seeing him cuffed up at a firing line. I waited for a guard to help me out, letting me know that they got everything from Burnie and apparently that they did find Dan’s body. I was so relieved to hear that. It felt good to know that this was worth all of what I went through. I looked to the window and saw Ryan standing behind everyone, watching me with concern but knew I would be alright.
After some final things that needed to be done, the guard handed me the gun and moved to the side. I stared at Burnie on the other side of the room, thinking a moment before speaking.
“Burnie…do you have anything else to say?” I asked, jaw clenched. He pondered a bit before smirking, nodding.
“Yeah…I do. I always love being the winner,” he grinned.
I narrowed my eyes, the guard telling me it was time. I nodded and lifted the gun, taking a breath before steadying my hand. Just like I had hundreds of times before, I let out my breath, relaxed my body as I focused on Burnie and pulled the trigger.
There was a loud bang in the room, then nothing. After a moment, I looked at Burnie. And I smirked, he stood there, in complete shock.
“Wh-WHAT!?” He screamed, “YOU FUCKING MISSED!? ARE YOU KIDDING ME!?”
“I didn’t miss, Burnie. I made my shot,” I smirked, “but blanks don’t really do anything, now do they?”
“Blanks??” he asked wide eyed.
“Yep. Made a few phone calls, got some things worked around. There’s no way they’d let me execute you. So the next day after our visit, Ryan and I got to work. You’re confession to Dan’s murder definitely got the attention of the British Army. So guess where you’re going?” I grinned, waving to him as the guard showed me out.
“Guess I win this one, Burnie. Have a good one,” I snickered as I left, Burnie just screaming profanities as Ryan and I left.
“So…you don’t regret not killing him?” Ryan asked as we left.
“Nah, not really. Knowing Dan’s finally at peace and I’m finally free from Burnie, I’m not bothered by the fact I didn’t kill him. It’s just finally over. I got what I wanted, so I’m happy.”
“Good to here. Now what do you want to do?” he asked.
“Just a night out on the town with you. Maybe rob a gas station or something later, we’ll need some spending money.”
“Gavin you’re dating a millionaire…” he chuckled.
“Yeah, but doing it like we used too would be awesome, a good adrenaline rush, you know?”
“Sure, sounds like a plan,” Ryan finally agreed.
“Top!! Let’s get going!!” I shouted cheerfully as he revved up the engine of his motorcycle and we sped off into the city.