FanFic - Michael/Maria
"Mountains All Crumble To The Sea"
Part 1
by Lovely Poet
Disclaimer: If they were mine none of the spoilers would be true and Max would never wear a shirt.
Summary: I’m not even sure myself, just read it.
Category: Michael/Maria
Rating: PG
Life is a study in contradictions, in binaries, each half standing on one side of the earth trying to stare down the other. One extreme can’t exist without each other. Somewhere in the middle they all meet. It all comes crashing together in explosions so heated, so intense that in the end the two are melded into one single, indivisible amalgam of passions and what once looked so completely illogical becomes the only thing that makes sense anymore.

“Why?” As the first flames of morning ignited the hidden fire of the quarry stones the word tore from his body fleeing the gravity that would always hold him. For the first time in his life, Michael Guerin received his answer.

“Because, that’s the way.” The soft response from a few feet behind him spun him around more forcefully that any blow he had ever felt. “That’s just the way.”

Neither one was conscious of movement but in that force of the universe that draws together all things in opposition he suddenly found his arms twined around her lithe body as she buried her face against his chest. His fingers explored the textures of her sweater, of the bare skin of her neck, of the softness of her hair that smelled like the purple and white flowers he once smelled in a social services office.

When the forces reversed and repelled them a few precious inches from the point of contact her face rose, brilliant in the dawn and her eyes shone with a purity to intense to look straight into. For fear of falling, falling and never coming out he looked away, focusing instead on the perfection of her left ear, its gentle curve and soft skin, with the single jade stone dull in the shadow his body provided.

“I can’t be what you want me to.” The admission was easier than he had expected in the face of the new look he saw every time he dared a glance into the abysmal depths of her soul. “I just don’t know how to…”

The words faded away under the sweet pressure of her lips against his in a kiss he recognized from a place and time that had never existed and he knew her answer to his contrition before she spoke. When her mouth finally released him, the words flowed out in the melody of her admission. “You are. You are what I want. I wish I could make you understand how much you are what I need.”

He began to speak but forced himself to close his mouth as she moved away from him toward the edge of the rocks. She sat slowly and tucked her knees under her chin somehow managing, in that most childish of postures to maintain the look of goddess among the people of the universe that he had first seen on another night when she looked anything but human.

“You don’t have an exclusive on fear.” Maria stated the words simply and waited until she felt him standing behind her in the still cool light of morning before she continued. “Or stubbornness for that matter. I have a lot of stock in them myself. The way I figured it, if I could make you what I’m not, if I could just ‘perfect’ you and make you stronger and braver and better than I am then I would have an explanation when you left.”

“I’m not afraid.” The revelation shocked him just as much as he imagined it shocked her. For most of his life he had mistaken the thing that lived in the pit of his stomach for fear. But overnight he suddenly realized that fear was a different animal altogether. Fear was the look in Maria’s eyes when she begged him to take her home last night, fear was not his stubborn disbelief of his worthiness to be taken into the soft embrace of a beautiful woman and to pour himself out to her. “I’m incapable.”

Maria slumped further into the solid slab of stone beneath her trying to curl her body into oblivion. She couldn’t deny the chill that didn’t come from the remnants of the desert night. When the copper of her blood hit her tongue she finally released her lip from her teeth and dared to speak hoping that whatever emotional trauma Michael would inflict would pale in the face of physical pain.

“You’re incapable? Of fear? Or of love?” She didn’t turn to look at him instead focusing on the eastern horizon, the direction she had once watched a man who loved her disappear into and never come back.

“Both.” He finally moved from behind her and slid around to the thin ledge of rock still jutting in front of her. He watched as his shadow fell over her taking away the last vestiges of Athenian glory from her. His voice dulled as he continued. “I told you I have to be a stone wall and that I can’t make any connections. You thought I meant I didn’t want to. I meant I can’t Maria, I really can’t. Ask Max, ask Isabel, go to social services and ask any worker that ever saw my case. I’ve tried. It never works; I can never do it right. I don’t try to stonewall people, it’s just as much a part of who I am as anything else.”

“Take your shoes off.” She stood weakly and bent to untie the sneakers on her own feet hoping he would ape her movements without questions. Shedding the shoes and socks and stepping onto the smooth rock she looked at him to find him staring back as though she were the alien and he had just discovered her existence. She knelt at his feet with no worship intended and yanked the laces of his worn boots until they were loose and their tongues wagging in the way his never did. “Take them off, and your socks.”

“Maria what are you doing? It’s barely even forty degrees yet. Put your shoes back on and go home.” He tried to reason with her only to find that as he had bent to retie the loosened laces, she had slipped past him down the steep embankment of the quarry to a flat rock near the edge of it’s reservoir. The knots back in place he slid down after her. “Maria, I’m sorry. I tried I really did, I just don’t want to hurt you anymore and if I don’t do this now…”

“Take off the damn shoes Michael.” She wandered further away from him, closer, and closer to the edge of the deep pools of water. In a fit of confused desperation he pushed the shoes from his feet, standing on their tops as he pealed one sock and then the other, revealing tanned, callused, scarred feet. He tried not to notice the differences between them defined by his marred soles and her soft, pink feet with the dainty nails of each toe painted a sparkling shade of purple as she danced around the edge of the rock, once again gleaming in the heavenly flames.

His continued refusal to act drove her to force his movement. Treading lightly on the rock she reached until she held both of his clenched fists in hers and pulled. Precariously balanced on the tops of his boots, he tumbled forward swearing and muttering as he fought to regain balance. She dropped his hands and looked at him.

“What do you feel?”

It was an answerless question. Empty, stupid, impotent, alone…warm. The final thought struck him finally as he stopped to notice the sensations in his feet. Warmth, heat radiated up from the ground that less than an hour ago had been covered with a desert’s winter and now he was being warmed from the soles up.

“Heat.” There was something in her face that told him he had found the right answer, satisfied her at last.

“It all changes Michael.” Her soft hands ran gently over the bristle of his unshaved jaw, stopping to trace the chapped lips that she so often had caressed with her own. “Cold stones heat up in the sun and if they spend enough time at the water’s edge, their edges get smoothed down and softened. My mother taught me that when she used to bring me here after my dad left, after I asked her why things had to change. Not even the rocks are forever, she said.”

“Maria-.” She stopped his words with her hand, pressing against his mouth gently.

“You want to be stone, and I can deal with that on one condition.” She reached down and grabbed his still clenched fists and one finger at a time, opened them, kissing each palm before she placed them on her waist. “If you get to be stone, you have to put up with me being your sun and your water.”

The words were left unspoken but the consent granted in the touch of his lips to hers, the moisture of his tears against her cheeks and the firmness of his arms around her body. The last of the guards gave up their posts, and their two extremes met with all the ferocity with which they had stayed apart.

Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours
Crashdown is maintained by and . Design by Goldenboy.
Copyright © 1999-2004 Web Media Entertainment.
No infringement intended.