Your Friend, Sheeran
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(Each chapter will have its content warnings beforehand, such as for any sexual content or any touchy subjects/matters, even if they're just implied) Sheeran's life isn't the toughest out there, but it isn't easy either. With his sketchy father, secluded neighborhood, and general life's burdens weighing him down, he has to find a way to live a normal life while also dealing with these things. But things get a bit complicated when his father is laid off from his job, and Sheeran begins to fall for one of his best friends. This will be a more casual thing I write, working on it in my spare time and when I'm feeling like it, so it may not be updated incredibly frequently.
This chapter contains no sexual content, but has drug mention and touches on an abusive parent-child relationship.
Sheeran’s teeth chattered in the chilly autumn breeze, the moon serving as a light to guide him back to his house. He lived on the outskirts of town, in a small house in a quiet neighborhood, with his dad, Malus. Not much happened in this neighborhood, but that was mainly because no one really cared about what went on undercover.
Sheeran could see the roof of his home over the tops of the hedges he was making his way through now, hoping his father wouldn’t be awake this late. He knew he wasn’t supposed to be out at a time like this, and his dad didn’t like him being out at night in general, but not exactly for his son’s safety.
He crossed the neighbors yard, quietly so not to be spotted or wake up anyone to catch him. When he finally hopped the fence and reached his own yard, he silently crept up the back porch stairs, slid open the screen door, cringing at the slight squeak of its rusty rails, and sighed in relief. “It doesn’t look like dad’s awake, but still, it’d be better to just go upstai-”
“So, have fun? I sure hope so, it’d make it worth all the trouble.”
Sheeran practically jumped through the ceiling at the sudden voice. A shape stepped out of the shadows of the dark living room, revealing a tall, dark-feathered avian, icy blue eyes piercing Sheeran’s own, equally as cold blue eyes.
“Uhh… sorry dad.”
Sheeran turned away, not wanting to meet his father’s gaze. Even so, he could feel the disappointment radiating off of the other.
“So, what were you up to this time? Meeting up with friends? Getting into trouble? Maybe some trespassing, breaking private property? Or was it theft?” Malus listed off from the wall of offenses Sheeran had committed previously, shame creeping up Sheeran’s body and making him feel all hot. He didn’t respond, only clenched his fist in the pocket of his sweatshirt.
Malus eyed Sheeran’s hands planted firmly in his pockets with mild curiosity.
“... Turn out your pockets.”
Sheeran felt panic creep up into his gut.
“Uh, I don’t think I will, thank you.” He motioned to leave, but was grabbed firmly by his father’s sharp talons.
“I said, turn out your pockets, kid.” Malus’s voice was low and gravely, but nothing short of menacing.
Sheeran gulped, turning to eye his father down. He refused to budge on his side of the argument.
Without saying a word, Malus tore his son’s hands from his pockets, causing a wad of money and some tiny ziplock bags to fall to the ground. Before Sheeran could rush to pick them up, Malus snatched them off the floor, inspecting both.
Malus, upon first sight of what the bag contained, immediately frowned. He flipped through the pile of cash that had accompanied the bag, and frowned. He glared at Sheeran, who didn’t have the strength to look at his father.
“Really? Drugs? With my money?” Malus lashed his tail. Sheeran could tell this wasn’t going to be good. He said nothing, but his thoughts were racing a mile a minute.
Malus pocketed the cash and the small bag, approaching Sheeran and grabbing him by the collar of his shirt.
“Listen to me, boy. You may be my son, but that doesn’t mean you can do whatever you please under my watch. You’re only 17 for a handful of days, so I’m still required to take care of you for just a little while longer. Once you’re 18, you’re out. You hear me?”
With his last words Malus shook Sheeran hard. Sheeran felt tears creep up on him. He nodded. Malus threw him away with disgust, marching away and up the stairs to the second floor of their shared home. Sheeran heard the bathroom door slam shut.
He lashed his tail back and forth, thinking about what had just happened. He let his tears fall freely, but didn’t make a sound. He didn’t want to show weakness, especially not now. Instead he quietly ran up the stairs himself, trudging to the end of the hallway to his room. On the way there he could see light coming from under the bathroom door, and heard his father mumbling to himself. He seemed to be pacing back and forth. Sheeran didn’t care. He just silently creaked open his bedroom door, not bothering with the light. Once he was in, he quietly closed the door behind him and kicked off his shoes. He slipped off his sweatshirt and tossed it away, not caring much about where it landed, his shirt following shortly after. He flopped down onto his bed and reached for his phone sitting on the nightstand, still plugged in where he’d left it when he left earlier. Upon unlocking it, he discovered he had some unread text messages.
Axel: “Hey, you up for hanging out tomorrow? I’ve got the day off work, figured we could do something with the others, they’re all free too.”
Sheeran didn’t respond. He didn’t have the energy for Axel right now. His next message was from Atlanta, his buddy since early middle school. Although he preferred to go by Atlas.
Atlas: “So, did he give you a deal? I asked him to, and he said he would for you. Let me know how you feel when you take it, I’ll come get you and we can get some snacks and hang out or something.”
Ah. Atlas was referring to the guy Sheeran had gotten the drugs from tonight. Not that it mattered now, Malus had taken it from him before he could’ve tried them out. Atlas had asked his drug dealer buddy to cut Sheeran a deal on something cheap but relatively strong, so he could try it out with Atlas and they could hang out together for Sheeran’s first drug trip experience.
Sheeran didn’t respond to Atlas either, not knowing how to tell him what had happened just now.
The final text was from someone Sheeran had met recently, when school started this year. She was a new student to his wing of classes, having been at the opposite end of the building in a different wing all her high school experience. It wasn’t like Sheeran had never seen her before, he’d just never had the chance to interact with her at all. She was incredibly pretty and smart, but it was her physical features that really attracted Sheeran to her.
Tempest: “Hey Sheeran, thanks for giving me the answer sheet the other day, I just barely passed that quiz with your help! How’d you even get it from the teacher anyway?”
Sheeran chuckled at the question, momentarily forgetting what had just transpired downstairs. He decided to answer.
Sheeran: “Just snatched it off his desk while he was in the bathroom, he never noticed it was gone when he got back. It’s not like we need to know this stuff anyway, it’s all shit we’ll never use.”
Sheeran sent the text, placing his phone back down on the nightstand. He sighed, focusing on the way the moonlight bounced off the different objects and angles in his room. His phone buzzed again.
It was a text from Tempest.
Tempest: “I’m surprised you’re awake this late. You been doing the homework for once? I know you’ve got a lot to make up.”
Sheeran checked the time of Tempest’s previous text; 11:42 PM. Looking up at the time on his phone, the numbers read 3:26 AM.
Sheeran: “I could say the same for you. I figured you’d be asleep as well. And nah, I don’t need to do something that only counts for a minuscule amount of my grade. Not worth my time.”
Sheeran barely had the chance to place his phone down again when it buzzed in his hand. He decided to hold onto it so he could talk to Tempest for a while.
Tempest: “I’m just having a hard time falling asleep is all. Same for you?”
Sheeran: “Not exactly. But that’s not important. What are you doing tomorrow?”
Tempest: “You mean later today? Nothing, just helping with chores around the house. Why?”
Sheeran: “No reason, just trying to find an excuse to get away from my house for a while. My dad’s not exactly happy with me right now.”
Tempest: “Oh, are you alright? You’re not in danger, are you?”
Sheeran: “No, no, I’m fine, just… not on good terms right now. But that’s not unusual, we’ve never really been ideal father and son.”
Tempest: “If you need somewhere to go, I have a spare room in my house. Even if it’s only for a little bit, I’m sure my parents won’t mind much.”
Sheeran raised an eyebrow at that response. He’d barely known Tempest for more than three months, and she was already offering him a place to stay.
...Although it would be nice to get away from his dad for a while.
Sheeran: “You sure? I’ll gladly take your offer, but not if it puts you into a corner with your own parents.”
Tempest: “Yeah dude, I’m sure. My parents are really flexible with my friends, although they’ve never actually met you before, only heard about you from me occasionally.”
Sheeran: “If it’s fine with them, then I’ll come stay with you for a bit, at least until this thing with my dad blows over. When would be a good time to get my stuff ready to head over? A few days, a week?”
Sheeran didn’t receive a response from Tempest for a little bit, so he placed the phone back down. How nice would it be to get away from this wretched house? The place reeked of smoke, there wasn’t much that Sheeran could eat (Malus only bought the bare minimum to keep him healthy, otherwise it was usually just takeout leftovers and scraps) and he barely had any leeway with what he was allowed to do around here, other than chores for his dad and going to school. Truth was, he was miserable here. He longed for something different, something nicer, something better.
His phone dinged again.
Tempest: “You can come today if you want, once you’re able.”
Sheeran: “Oh, ok, yeah I can come tomorrow, I’ll just have to wait until my dad leaves for work in the morning. That’ll probably be around 8:15 or so. Sound good?”
Tempest: “That’s fine. I’ll prepare the extra room for you then, it’s not much, but it’s something.”
Sheeran smiled at that. Tempest was so kind and nice with him, despite not really knowing him for very long. He sent one last text before putting his phone down for the night;
Sheeran: “: )”
The sun began to rise, casting an orange light over the sleeping neighborhood. Sheeran awoke to a loud crash downstairs and his dad swearing loudly. He decided not to investigate, he’d probably just tripped over something and sent it flying as a result. He simply rolled over, trying to find a comfortable position to go back to sleep in.
His phone dinged.
Cracking his eyes open, he picked up the device and unlocked it, looking at the text he’d just been sent.
Tempest: “The room’s all ready for you, whenever your dad leaves you can come over.”
She then sent her address, to which Sheeran made a note of in his phone.
Sheeran waited for a while, at least until he heard the main door close and he could no longer hear his father trudging around downstairs. Once he was sure the coast was clear, he climbed out of bed, slipped on a new shirt, changed his old clothes, and began to pack his stuff.
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