FanFic - Crashdown After Hours
Part 2
by Teri Leigh
Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with the WB, Melinda or Jason. Basically I own nothing and no infringement is intended.
Summary: My version of what takes place after Destiny. Max is in a bad place.
Category: After Hours
Rating: NC-17
Authors Note: There may be a short 4 part sequel to this one if anyone wants it to continue. The Point of View changes in each section between Max and Liz.

"Miss, I asked for Ranch dressing and no onions."

Liz forced a smile and quickly picked up the plate. "I'm sorry. I'll fix that right away." With only 20 minutes left in her shift, she had to keep reminding herself that killing the customers, though it may end their complaints, would probably get her arrested. After quickly fixing the order, she delivered it to the table all smiles and apologies.

She saw Brooke, her relief, walk in and, since she only had one table left, let her take over while she went to the back room to do some sidebar work. After a few minutes Liz walked back out to leave the check with her table, then quickly cleared it after the man left.

Waving a quick goodbye to Brooke, she walked into the back, opening her locker to grab her purse. She rolled her neck, using her hand to rub the tense muscles there. This room held so many memories for her. How often had Max come in here after her shift was done, massaging her shoulders and asking about her day? Max could make all the miseries of dealing with the public, even the worst customers, disappear with a smile and a kiss. She always knew when he was there, could feel the heat of his body sending tingles through her before they ever touched.

When she felt arms wrapping around her from behind, she wondered for a moment if she was still lost in her memories, but she knew that wasn't the case. The pressure was too firm, pulling her body tightly against the one behind her. The kiss that touched her neck wasn't a simple expression of love shared by two people who cared deeply for one another, but more insistent, as though trying to initiation something more intense.

"All done with work?"

She answered the question with a slight nod of her head before letting it fall back onto the shoulder behind her. Her arms slipped over the ones still tangled around her waist and her eyes shut as simpler, lighter kisses covered her neck. Though she made no move to pull away, she also made no move to turn into his embrace and greet him with kisses.

"Are we still on for tonight or are you too tired? You look kinda beat." He was the one who had finally turned her to face him. Now, looking directly into his blue eyes, there was no escaping into her fantasies. It was better this way really. Kyle deserved more from her than her unfaithfulness, even if it was just in thought. He had been so attentive and caring where she was concerned. So comforting in her time of need, always there for her, without asking too many questions that she didn't have answers for. Winding her arms around his neck, she buried her head in his shoulder and thought back on how their relationship had started again.

Kyle had come to her after that day in the desert where she had learned that Max was not now, nor ever would be hers. The day after he had been shot and Max had saved his life. He, understandably, had questions about it all and she hadn't been sure how to answer them. Upon mentioning Max's name, she broke into tears and began to sob. He held her gently, letting her cry, even though he had no idea why she was crying. He didn't pressure, just kept her enveloped in his arms, safe from the evils of the world, if only for a little while.

Realizing that she would have to give him some sort of explanation for all that had happened, and not knowing exactly how, she had instead asked for his trust. She understood how difficult it was for him to deal with all this, but he finally relented. In the end all she had said was, "Kyle, I understand how hard all of this is and I wish I had answers for you, but I don't. I know you probably won't believe me, but in this case, the less you know the better. You just have to trust in me when I say that you're safer not knowing and be thankful for whatever happened out there, for whatever it was that saved you."

It was as if saying the words had triggered something in her brain. She suddenly realized that Kyle could have been killed. No, he was killed. Max had saved his life. If he hadn't have been there, Kyle would be dead right now. Kyle, the first boy she ever sneaked into the eraser room with, the first and until recently, only boy she had ever been to second base with. She still kept the little stuffed bear he had won for her on their first date beside her bed. Like dead weight the idea sunk in. Kyle had died.

Without another thought, she flung herself into his arms as her tears began anew. He must have sensed that these tears were different. Her body language had changed. What had been someone seeking solace was now a desperate attempt to hold on to him. As though she were afraid he'd disappear. Before he had time to analyze his actions, he had cupped her face in his hands and kissed her. Perhaps a synapse had disconnected, sending him back to last summer in his mind, but he had used kisses to comfort her then, and he did so once again. She stiffened in his arms briefly and then tentatively returned his kiss.

His tongue ran teasingly over her lips, which parted slightly to allow him entrance. The kiss, which remained gentle, was both familiar and at the same time entirely new. It was a reacquainting of their mouths to each other, and for Kyle, entirely too fleeting. However reason overcame his passion-addled brain, and he pulled away from her, though his hands stayed in place on her cheeks.

"I'm sorry." He murmured, his face still inches from hers, his thumbs wiping her tears away. "I shouldn't have done that." He gulped in a lung full of air, before plowing ahead. "Not only did I take advantage of…of the situation, but you have a boyfriend, Liz. And even though there's this huge part of me that's saying screw him and yelling at me to just grab you and kiss you until I forget that you ever left me, I just can't. He may have made his move while you and I were together, but I can't do the same. I guess it has something to do with the whole 'I owe him my life bit'."

"Kyle, Max and I…we aren't…he's not…we're not together…anymore. We can't be." Her words were broken between gasps of breath as her sobs began once more.

He lifted her carefully, settling her on his lap and rocking her back and forth as one would with a frightened child. Uttering soothing words, he tried to calm and offer her reassurance. "I'm sure whatever problem you and Max are having, you'll work through it." It pained him to say the words, but her misery hurt him more. "I've never seen two people who care about each other as much…as much as the two of you. It's obvious that…"

His words were silenced as she raised her hand and placed it lightly against his lips. "Please. Please, I don't want…I don't want to talk about it. I'm sorry Kyle, but I can't…I just can't."

Nodding, he continued his rocking and tranquil words. Once she had quieted and her tears had stopped, he placed a kiss on top of her head and pulled her away from him. "I should probably get going. I'm sure you have things you need to do and you'd be better off without an ex-boyfriend underfoot." Though he wore a smile, Liz could tell the words were not entirely a jest. He honestly believed she didn't want him around.

"Kyle?" She stopped his motion with a hand on his chest pressing him back down into the chair. "If you wouldn't mind too much, I could really use a friend." The smile she offered him was small and weak, but it was the best she could manage.

"Sure. You want me to call Maria?"

His little joke had the desired effect, causing Liz to let loose a short bark of laughter. "I have a feeling she may be busy. I guess you'll just have to do." The grin that now occupied her face was much less forced than before.

He heaved a great sigh, as if she had just asked him to do the unthinkable. "Well, if I'm the only option."

Pulling her back into his arms, he lay down on the lawn chair atop her roof, fitting the length of her body beside him. Her cheek lay against his chest and she could hear his strong and steady heartbeat under her ear. His hand stroked her hair, letting it slide through his fingers as her eyes slipped closed. In a few minutes, her breath had evened out to the slow, steady, rise and fall of sleep. Cradling her in his arms, he carried her into her room, took off her shoes and socks, and put her to bed.

"Liz? Are you still with me here?" his hand waving before her eyes brought her rushing back to the present.

"I'm sorry, Kyle. I just…I just zoned out there for a second. What were you saying?"

"Liz, if you keep up the spacey routine I'm going to start calling you Maria." His smirk and tone of voice let her know he was teasing. He was constantly trying to make her laugh and she was infinitely grateful to him for it. "I was asking if we were still on for tonight. If you're too tired we don't have to go out. I'd be just as happy sitting in your living room watching videos."

"Honestly, that sounds like a great idea. Today has been entirely too long a day for it to only be two o'clock. Maybe we could just watch one video and lying around relaxing for a bit will give me the energy to go out later?"

"Sounds like a plan to me." Leaning forward he placed a quick kiss on her lips, before leaning back in immediately for a longer one.

"Why don't you go order us some food while I go upstairs for a shower and a change of clothes."

"Hey, I'd rather help with the showering than with the food." He waggled his eyebrows suggestively towards her and, in an effort to live up to his sexual comments, placed both hands firmly on her butt and dragged her to him, kissing her passionately through their mutual laughter.

She pushed him away seconds later, but not before Michael had walked in and seen the display. He entered so silently and exited so quickly that Liz and Kyle didn't realize he'd even been there at all.

Part 1 | Index | Part 3a
Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours
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