Category Linkin Park

Method To The Madness by mermaid_life87

A Closeted Romeo

A/N: Hi, everyone! :) Here’s my latest idea. I wasn’t totally sure how to categorize this one. Initially, I intended this to be more comedy than anything else but, as I was writing, some drama snuck it’s way in. So, I guess, it’s a mix of both? Hopefully?

Disclaimer: I use the term comedy loosely. No idea how funny I actually am. Still...maybe you’ll laugh. Or, at the very least, smile. :)



Brad Delson was sleeping. Or would’ve been, if it wasn’t for the drunk whining of a distraught, tattooed vocalist.

“Brad?” Chester whispered desperately, kneeling in front of the guitarist’s bottom bunk. “Brad, come on, man. You gotta wake up. Please?”

Nothing. Not even the rustle of a blanket.

With a deep, shaky breath, Chester went on, “I fucked up, Delson. And I don’t mean one of my usual, run of the mill fuck ups either. No, I’m talking, like, I fucked up. Way up. And Mike, he, he’ll probably never talk to me again.” The reality was soul crushing. Chester felt it in his bones, his tendons, his ligaments. Everywhere. I swear I’m done drinking. Never again. Never the fuck again.

Brad’s ears perked up at the mere mention of Chester and Mike not speaking to one another. It was a concept he simply couldn’t wrap his head around. He didn’t even bother to try. They’ve been attached at the hip since day one. Chester has to be exaggerating. With some reluctance and mild irritation, Brad decided to speak up, hoping to talk the vocalist off an imaginary ledge. “Are you sure you aren’t being dramatic? You know how you get when you’re drinking, Chaz.”

“No, Brad, I swear! I - can you open your curtain? Please? I really need to talk and this feels so...impersonal.” The blonde gestured towards the offensive fabric separating him from his impromptu therapist.

Now feeling more than mildly irritated, Brad grit his teeth and rolled his eyes. “Chester,” he grumbled impatiently as he turned over and pulled back his curtain, “do you recall why I didn’t go to the bar with you guys tonight?”

“Yes, of course -“

“My stomach has literally been at war with me all day -“

“I know! That sushi -“

“All day, Chester. I just want some peace and quiet. Just for a little while. I’m sure whatever happened -“

“I kissed Mike!” Chester blurted in a rush. He clamped his hands over his mouth, eyes wide.

Brad’s eyes popped just as wide and he swore his heart skipped a beat. Possibly two. “You...you did what?”

Chester’s hands fell from his face to his lap as his eyes welled with tears. “I kissed him, Brad. Like a total lovesick idiot. And, and he just stood there! Frozen! And the look on his face...” Chester squeezed his eyes shut against the memory of Mike’s mortified expression. “I’ve never fucked up quite like this, Delson. This is one for the books.”

The desire for peace and quiet, the more than mild irritation, even the ache in his unruly belly, were all forgotten as Brad digested the singer’s latest mishap. He felt frantic, debating whether or not a simple kiss could, in fact, be the undoing Chester feared it to be. “Where’s Mike? Is he still at the bar?”

Chester shrugged pitifully. “I guess so. I don’t know what happened after I left. Hell, for all I know, Mike’s working everyone into a frenzy and organizing a lynch mob.”

“Doubt it.” Brad mumbled, speaking more to himself than Chester. He bit his lip absentmindedly while contemplating his next move.


“Listen,” Brad crawled out of his bunk, nearly hitting his head on the bottom of Rob’s in his haste, “do me a favor and stay put, okay? I’m gonna talk to Mike.”

“Brad, I don’t think -“

“The bar? Is it the one we passed on our way to the venue?”

“Yeah, but I really don’t -“

Frustration was creeping in, on top of the already present panic, and Brad snapped. “Damn it, Chester, just -“ He sighed heavily, regaining his composure. “Just trust me, okay? You...there’s something you don’t know. Alright? But I’m hoping you will. Soon. God knows, it’s way overdue.”

Confused. Puzzled. Bewildered. Chester was all of the above. Needing answers, he called after his bandmate. “Brad, wait! Brad! What don’t I know?”

The sound of the door to their tour bus closing was Brad’s only response.


“What the hell?” Mike snapped angrily, desperately trying to free his wrist from a bony fingered death grip. “Delson! Stop!”

The guitarist did stop, but not until they were out of the bar with plenty of distance between them and the run down establishment. “When?”

Mike rubbed his now tender wrist gently. Has everyone lost their minds? First Chester. Now Brad. Gotta be a full moon. “What the fuck are you talking about?”

“When, Mike?”

“Well, Brad-O, maybe, if I actually knew what the hell was going on, I could answer your question.”

“When are you going to tell Chester? Huh? Because now really seems like as good a time as any. Or were you planning on letting him wallow in self-hatred and pity all night because you’re a coward?”

Mike swallowed. “He, he told you?”

Brad nodded. “Yeah. Yeah, he did. And he’s heart broken. He thinks you hate him. I know you don’t wanna hear this, but it’s time, man. It’s time to come clean. You need to tell him.“

“Tell him? No. No, I can’t -“ Mike stopped, rethinking his words. “I mean, tell him what? There’s nothing to tell.”

Frustrated and weary, Brad shoved his hands into the front pockets of his jeans. “Really, Shinoda? Fucking really?”

“Brad, man, come on, I -“

“So, to be clear, you don’t have any romantic feelings for Chester at all, correct? Not a one. Strictly platonic.”

“Y-yes.” Mike lied. Horribly.

“Alright. Fair enough.” Brad shrugged, nonchalant. “You’re cool with me making a move then?”

Mike’s face paled. “What? Making a move? On Chester? I, I don’t understand.”

“You don’t need to.”

Brad turned, getting started on the first of four city blocks that led back to their tour bus.

“He’ll never go for you!” Mike screamed, hating the bitterness in his voice. “You know that, right?”

Unfazed, the tired guitarist didn’t stop. He didn’t turn around. He didn’t scream back at the emcee.

“He kissed me! Me!

Brad could only grin, green leaves already sprouting from the seed he’d planted.


“Where’d you get it?”

Dumbfounded, Brad blinked. A couple times. “Where did I get what?”

“The weed you’ve been smoking. Where’d you get it?”

“Chester. We’ve been over this. I’m not high. I haven’t smoked this whole tour.”

“See, that’s where I beg to differ.” Chester sat down next to Brad, a beer in each hand. He handed one off. “You have to be high to think this is a good idea.”

The two musicians had taken up residence at the back of the bus.

Not high. And,” Brad tipped his beer bottle in Chester’s direction, “it’s a great idea.”

“I think we have different definitions for the word great. Maybe even for the word idea.”

Brad burst out laughing. “Look, Chaz, I don’t really give a shit what you call it. Great or not, actual idea or not. Whatever. Either way, this will work. Mark my words.”

Falling silent and staring blankly, Chester sipped his beer, carefully considering Brad’s strategy. “If we do this, how far do we take it? Do we kiss?”

“Closed mouth, yes. Open mouthed, no.”

Chester nodded his agreement. “Assuming hand holding is fair game than?”

“Fair game.” Brad looked over at his bandmate, a devious smirk all but leaping off his face. “Ass grabbing?”

Chester snorted. “Delson, why do I feel like you just want an excuse to grab my ass?”

“Oh, fuck you!” Brad huffed, playfully slapping the singer’s leg. “Don’t forget, Bennington, it’s you who needs me. Not the other way around. You’re the one with a stubbornly closeted Romeo.”

“You think ass grabbing will make said Romeo cave sooner?”

“Oh, for sure.”

“Alright. Ass grabbing it is than.”


Thanks so much for reading! As always, please feel free to tell me what you think. :)

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