Title: “What a Beautiful Mess”
Author: bello_romantico, Kat, just me. :)
Warnings: There really aren’t any I can think of... A brief allusion to sex, I suppose, but that’s all!
Summary: Paul remembers that beautiful mess of a summer and the beautiful mess of a boy he spent it with.
Inspiration: Jason Mraz’s “Beautiful Mess” – I beg you all to listen to it. It is so beautiful it made me cry.
what a beautiful mess
Paul remembers the summer he turned seventeen as a spontaneous affair full of smiles exchanged in the cool, salty Liverpool breeze and things seen through locks of sun-kissed hair blown into his eyes. Guitar chords strummed in hot, stuffy rooms; pages of lined paper crammed with messy, cursive writing; shrewd, brown eyes hidden behind thick glasses; raucous laughter that never seemed to end; a warm, wet mouth that tasted of freedom – those moments are the ones that made up Paul’s seventeenth summer. It was a summer filled to the brim with all the best things in his young life: lemonade, cigarettes, music and, of course, John, John, John.
Paul remembers waking up every morning with the sweet hum of laziness in his bones and reveling in the prospect of a new day to spend with John. They did everything together – even things people would regard as meaningless nothings.
They walked up and down the streets of Liverpool for hours on end – just walking in the sunshine for the simple pleasure of being underneath the blue sky together.
They sat on the wicker furniture on Mimi’s front porch and didn’t talk, simply sat together – eyes that kept glancing at one another covered by sunglasses that made them feel like older than they were.
They liked to make music together down by the pier – their guitars warm in their hands as their songs lost themselves in the wind, their interwoven voices skipping out over the sparkling waves.
They stained their shirts with brilliant green streaks of grass and tore holes in the knees of their jeans. They dumped glasses of water over the other’s head and slipped ice cubes down the front of the other’s shirt, giggling madly the whole time. They scribbled song lyrics on each other’s hands in ballpoint pen and bought apples at the local market to keep their mouths moist on the particularly warm days.
They did it all.
Paul remembers the balmy night they kissed for the first time – lips sliding over one another and tongues that tasted of sun, sugar and smoke. Hands found skin slick with sweat and fingers trembling with fascination trailed through locks of hair. It ended in a duet of sighs and with mischievous grins people wear when they’ve discovered something new and delicious. Paul remembers noticing that the moonlight had entangled itself in John’s hair, had melted into his eyes and had pooled on his lips.
And so, Paul leaned in again to taste the moonlight.
Paul remembers kissing John was always a thrill because he always tasted of different things. On the day they bought ice cream together, John tasted of chocolate. On the day they ventured down to the market to buy their apples, but decided on peaches instead, John tasted sticky and juicy. On the day they snuck behind that building to smoke, John tasted of cigarettes. On Paul’s Birthday, John tasted of pound cake and frosting. John tasted of everything; cherries, Coca Cola, tobacco, popsicles, peppermint, salty sea air and sweat.
John tasted of their summer together.
Paul remembers his favorite kiss with John on that overcast day near the end of their summer. They’d been alone in Paul’s house, plucking out broken chords on their guitars and making up nonsense lyrics, when the pitter patter of rain reached their ears. John had looked up, crossed over to the window and commented with uncontained glee, “It’s raining.” Paul had responded that he, “Could’ve guessed that, you dumb twat,”, but John’s hand grabbed his and in a matter of minutes, they were outside beneath the rain.
The warm rain soaked their clothes and trickled through their hair, down their noses, between their lips. They threw their heads back and laughed, fat droplets of water splashing down on their upturned faces. John’s kiss cut off Paul’s laughter and their bodies pressed together in a wet embrace, hands sopping with rain slipping under shirts and pulling the other closer. Despite the balmy air, the two boys shivered, but continued to press their shivering lips against each other – again and again and again.
That day, John tasted of water and smiles.
A few days after that, he tasted of tissues and cold medicine.
Paul remembers the morning he woke up next to John – the buttery morning sunshine spilling over the sea of tangled covers and limbs. The room smelled of heat and skin and their bodies smelled of kisses and murmurs of ‘I love you.’ The night before had been a culmination of kisses and touches that kept lasting longer, roaming to more secret places. The urge to get closer, closer, closer along with their hearts beating faster, faster, faster pushed them to a reckless decision and even though Paul cried at first, his tears were brushed away and soon forgotten. They fell asleep feeling loved and safe, the buzz of pleasure still warm in their blood.
Though that night changed everything, it changed nothing at all because the morning after was made up of smiled “Good mornings” and slow kisses full of trust - best friends forever they promised.
And Paul’s bed forever smelled of John.
Paul remembers that summer as a blur of feelings, of spur of the moment decisions, of whims and impulses, of touch and taste and sounds and sights. For the entirety of those three, glorious months, Paul walked on air, his head high above the clouds and he didn’t come down until fall crept back in and life resumed as usual – picking up where it had left off with books and classrooms and homework.
Paul remembers that beautiful mess of a summer the way one remembers something they can never get back – with a sad smile, a faint warmth, and a twist of the heart. It was the summer he fell in love – fell in love with life, fell in love with music and fell in love with John.
When Paul sits down to remembers John, he can’t help but remembers him the way he was that summer – young and boisterous, his hair flying, legs clad in those torn jeans, grass-stained shirt on his back, face grinning and completely covered in sunshine; sun in his eyes, in his hair, in his hands, on his neck, on his guitar and flashing in his glasses.
John Lennon – the most beautiful mess Paul McCartney has ever seen.