When sixteen-year-old Beto O’Rourke arrives at the elite Woodberry Forest School for Boys, he’s a complete outsider. Transplanted from El Paso, the social and academic pressure of New England is alien to him. What’s more, his father, a powerful Texan judge, expects Beto to one day attend law school and honour the family name. But Beto doesn’t want to be a lawyer; he wants to be an artist, a man of letters. When he’s invited to join a small circle of outcasts for nightly meetings in the school’s old, abandoned gymnasium, reading poetry and debating philosophy, he thinks he’s found the answer to his problems. But his new friends have a secret… a dangerous secret… a paranormal secret. Will Beto choose to walk the path of night with his newfound friends, or will he settle for bland, ordinary mortality?
Rated T; Alternate Universe – Boarding School, Alternate Universe – Vampires, Alternate Universe – 1980s, Biting, Daddy Issues, Found Family, References to Dickens, Immortality
O’Rourke attended Columbia University where in his junior year he co-captained Columbia’s heavyweight rowing crew. As a teen, he developed a love for punk music, along with two of his friends from El Paso—Mike Stevens and Arlo Klahr. They each began to learn to play instruments, and by the beginning of his freshman year at Columbia in 1991, the trio recruited drummer Cedric Bixler-Zavala (eventual vocalist for At the Drive-In and The Mars Volta), and they formed the band Foss. During their summers they toured the US and Canada. O’Rourke was a bassist. The group released a self-titled demo and a 7″ record, “The El Paso Pussycats”, on Western Breed Records in 1993.
College junior Beto O’Rourke is living two very different lives. By day, he’s an Ivy League golden boy, trekking from Columbia to an upstate boathouse, rowing crew to avoid pleasure. By night, he’s jamming econo with his best friends from high school, trying to propel his punk band to underground superstardom. But when the biggest rowing match of the year falls smack in the middle of the CMJ Music Marathon, Beto will have a difficult choice to make. Can he wow the crowds, land a record deal, and steer Columbia to gold medal glory? Can he ever reconcile his sweaterboy side with the Absolute Nightmare within?
Rated M; Alternate Universe – College/University, Alternate Universe – 1990s, Rowing Crew to Avoid Pleasure, Darning Socks to Sign With Matador, Bandom, Emotional Vulnerability
When Beto O’Rourke graduates from an Ivy League School with a fancy English degree and no job prospects, he’s desperate for some way, any way, to pay the rent. He settles for a minimum wage job at a local coffee shop — that is, until one day, the famous novelist Asher Livingston (played by Peak Hugh Grant) walks in for a latte with his young son, four-year-old Atticus (played by Peak Jonathan Lipnicki), in tow. Ever since his wife died in childbirth, Asher has been too depressed — and too busy caring for Atticus — to write another novel. But when Atticus has a temper tantrum at the coffee shop, and Beto expertly cuts in to stem the tears with kind words and a cookie, Asher sees a way out of his predicament. He offers Beto a job as a live-in nanny… and in time, things will bloom between them. They will race through the red and yellow leaves of Central Park, Atticus riding piggyback, to the tune of “Blister in the Sun.” They will stare at each other with wet eyes in an Upper West Side whiskey bar as Beto begs Asher to be vulnerable and “Stay” by U2 plays in the background. They will celebrate Asher’s first book sale in years beneath a starry sky on a Manhattan rooftop — perhaps with a first kiss? — as the proud strains of “Champagne Supernova” swell in the background. Wait, this idea legitimately kicks ass. Nobody touch this. I’m traveling back in time to get Hugh Grant and Jonathan Lipnicki on board, and to rope an aimless post-grad Beto O’Rourke into a lead role in the first-ever gay romcom.
Rated E; Alternate Universe – Coffee Shop, Alternate Universe – 1990s, Babyfic, Slow Burn, Pining, Unresolved Sexual Tension, Length > 1,000,000 Words, Soundtrack Available on Spotify Including “Semi-Charmed Life” by Third Eye Blind and “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None The Richer and “Piazza New York Catcher” by Belle & Sebastian, You Know, The Good Shit