Sequel ficlet for buddleia. Sequel to Consolation.

so proud
by Lesa Soja

When the day comes, Kelly goes online and sees the article before Joey does, and she actually prints it out and leaves it for him on the kitchen table, weighted down with the glass of orange juice she pours for him every morning. He picks up the glass without touching the paper and sips it at slowly. The picture is okay, he thinks. Not the best picture of Lance ever, but not unflattering, either. His own quote is fine too. Close buddy. First to find out. He sounds good, supportive, he sounds fine.

Kelly comes in and walks over to stand next to him, wrapping an arm around his waist. Joey settles his arm over her shoulders. "Isn't it terrific?" she says. "I'm so proud of him."

"Me too," Joey says.

When the magazine with the full interview arrives, Joey takes it away into the Supe room to read it. It's okay, it's a good article, actually. It's fine. He's a little surprised maybe by how much of what Lance said is true. He remembers that day in Lance's house, walking into Lance's office and seeing Lance with Freddy - not fucking, or naked, not even kissing, just standing pressed up close with their arms wrapped around each other. Lance's eyes stayed soft for a moment after he lifted his head. Then his face evened out and Joey said "Sorry!" and backed out of the room.

A twitch of Joey's hand makes the magazine fall closed, and he lets it drop to the table. It's not important, anyway; it's not telling him or reminding him of anything new. He remembers perfectly well what he found out that day.