It had gotten to the point that Will wondered if Kevin had simply given up on calling them back. Or worse, he wondered if neither he nor Orlando would ever see Shy again because something had happened to Kevin. Having these doubts and fears rattling around his head constantly was making it hard to focus on anything but getting that call. If Kevin would call back, they could put their plan into action and work to get their boy back. They'd already discussed it at length in the bedroom, knowing that Kevin had planted surveillance equipment there and trying to use it to their advantage, but there was no guarantee that Kevin was listening or watching. It all felt so hopeless.
Will wasn't eating and was neglecting to make sure Orlando was doing all right. If there was any fallout from that, he didn't notice but would surely come to regret it later. Lately, his days had been spent in his office, scouring news sites for any stories involving someone being rescued from a boat or someone matching Shy's description escaping from a captor. It was a fruitless exercise, but at least it was something for him to do instead of going over everything he did wrong. Despite Orlando's assurances that this wasn't his fault, there was always going to be that nagging guilt in the back of his head that this could have all been avoided if he'd been more vigilant and taken precautions after Kevin's release from prison.
The ringing of his cell phone caught him off guard and made him jump and quickly reach for it.
"Yes?" he quickly answered, praying it wasn't his mother or Peter checking up on them for the umpteenth time.
The sound of Kevin's voice wouldn't have been so welcome under any other circumstances.
"Oh god, Kevin," Will said, sounding clearly relieved. "I didn't think you were ever going to call back."
The relief was genuine, but it was also going to put the wheels of their plan in motion.
"Careful, sweetheart," Kevin said, amused. "You almost sound glad to hear from me."
"Of course I am. I wasn't sure if anything had happened to you. You're our only connection to Shy."
Kevin snorted. "Yeah, I figured it was just about this sweet boy of mine."
Will gritted his teeth. "Don't say that," he said softly, then forced out, "not if you really feel about me the way you say you do."
The pause on the other end of the line stretched out, and Will knew that he'd gotten Kevin's attention.
"What?" For the first time since this had all started, Kevin sounded unsure of himself. "What do you mean?"
"Kevin..." Will stood up and went in search of Orlando. He needed his husband to know that things were starting to move. "You said that you wanted to trade Shy for me, didn't you? How is it supposed to make me feel if now you're acting as if you stopped caring about me."
"What the hell are you talking about? You don't care that I love you."
"Maybe there was a time I didn't," Will said, swallowing hard, "but the lengths you've gone to have proven to me that there's got to be something to what you're saying. And...and I can't help remembering how good it used to be for us before I left you."
This time, Kevin's silence stretched out a little longer, and when he finally spoke, there was a definite happiness that colored the words. "I knew you'd come around," he said softly. "I knew that if I gave you time to think about it, you'd want to come back. But what changed your mind?"
Will had found Orlando and winced as he started to feed Kevin more lies. "Would you believe I felt jealous when you said that you were thinking of keeping Shy?" His voice was shaking so much, he was sure Kevin would know he was lying. Instead, his ex surprised him by laughing the way he used to when he thought Will was being, in his words, adorable.
"Oh, Will," Kevin said, his voice as sweet as anything, "you should have known that I only said that to make you jealous. It worked, didn't it?"
"Yeah, it did." Will forced a soft laugh. "And when I told Orlando that, we had a huge fight. Everything about Shy came out and now I realize how unhappy I am here. I've come to the conclusion that what I have with Orlando is nothing compared to what I had with you. I was fooling myself to think I could be happy taking a backseat to another man when all this time you've loved me and wanted to be with me." As he spoke, he reached for Orlando's hand, holding it tightly. "So you saying that about Shy really bothered me."
"I've missed you so much." The emotion Will heard in Kevin's voice took him by surprise. "And I'm so sorry for what happened the day you left me. I was so desperate to hold onto you, I... I think I lost my mind a little bit, you know? And...it's no excuse for the way I hurt you. I know I hurt you, Will... I'm so, so sorry..."
Will looked at Orlando, wide-eyed when Kevin began to cry. This was going better than he could have hoped.
"It's okay, Kevin," he said, trying to sound soothing. "Just give me the chance to start things over with you. I need some time to pack a few things, though. Can you come get me in the morning? This way Shy can come home and you can get me?"
"Yes, sure, of course," Kevin said quickly. "But... Can I talk to Orlando? Is he there?"
"Um, yeah." Will frowned. What on earth could Kevin want with Orlando now? "Here he is." He held the phone out to his husband and shrugged.