Heatwave

a The Fast and the Furious story

by dirty diana

dirtydiana78@hotmail.com

written for the multifandom1000 weather challenge.


Rome can't get used to the weather in Miami. It's hot, but not the way that it's hot in Arizona. This is a sticky wet humid heat, and Rome doesn't like it. Then one week it gets real hot, so hot that even the Floridians are complaining. So hot that the guy on the news is using words like "heat wave", and "hottest summer in 30 years." It gets so hot that Rome can't sleep.

So the first night that it gets like that, he calls Brian. At maybe three in the morning, but Brian doesn't complain.

"What's up, bro?"

"I can't sleep. It's fucking hot up in here."

"Yeah, I know." And there's a pause, a distinct space in which Rome can hear Brian rolling over in bed, with a sigh of the mattress. Rome wonders if Brian still sleeps in the same tired old pyjama pants, like he did before...well. Before.

Brian's saying, "I can't sleep either. Want to go for a drive?"

"Sure."

So Brian picks him up in his car, because Brian's car has air-conditioning. Rome's car doesn't, because it's a thirty-year-old Mustang, and Rome can't afford to put in air-conditioning till he's done paying for the new engine. So Brian picks him up, and they got to the drive-thru window at MacDonald's and cruise around and talk about nothing until they're both ready to sleep. Then Brian drops him back home.

The second night Rome calls him around two thirty. Brian was sleeping, Rome is pretty sure, but Brian doesn't mention it, just rolls over in bed and says, "I'll come get you." They go to the Burger King, which doesn't have a drive-thru.

The third night, it's still too hot. Brian doesn't answer the phone right away. It rings maybe six times before he finally picks up.

"Rome." Sounding funny, far away.

"It's me. It's hot."

"Yeah, I know," Brian says, and he's about to say something else, when there's a woman's voice talking in the background.

"Hey, Brian, you going to talk on the phone all night?"

And Brian smiles. Rome can hear him smile, he knows that smile, except that Brian hasn't smiled at him like that in a long time. Years. "Nah. I'm coming."

And he hangs up, before Rome can ask him certain questions, like who the hell was that, and how can anyone get it on in this damn heat anyway?

The fourth night, the heat finally breaks, and it rains. It rains, it pours, and there's thunderstorms and fucking lightning. Rome hates lightning, and he can't sleep. He doesn't call Brian.

Rome's phone rings about three forty-five.

"Brian," Rome says when he picks up, "I figured you'd be busy."

"Busy? Why?" Brian asks, and Rome can hear that he's dead serious, has no idea what Rome's talking about. "Nah. I just figured you were probably weren't sleeping. Since you're scared of the thunder and everything."

"Bro," Rome answers, as there's another violent crack outside his window that makes him jump, "I am not."

"Yeah, you are. Since we were kids. You want me to come pick you up?"

"You're crazy. I ain't driving around in no fucking thunderstorm, Brian."

"Thought so. I'll come over."

Rome can hear him smiling.

~fin.

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