FanFic - Michael/Maria
"Need You Around"
Part 2
by Jennna
Disclaimer: I own nothing.. blah blah blah.
Summary: Maria decides she needs something out in the open. Michael bungles the situation.
Category: Michael/Maria
Rating: PG-13
Authors Note: Distribution: Ask, and ye shall receive. Feedback: Greatly, greatly appreciated. This is my first fanfic.. I want to know if I should just stick to my day job. Note: This part brought to you by The Smashing Pumpkins' "One Less Moment" and the letter Q.
If I speak to you, will you hear me
If I reach to you, will you feel me
If I kissed you, would you love me

One less moment to break your heart
One less love to tear apart

Don't want to be your lover
Don't want to be your friend
But to the spell we're surrendered

So just let me pretend
That you don't exist, a connection is amiss

One more ruse to pierce your soul
One more chance to let go

In a mountain song, sing the echos
In alone meadows, chasin shadowsIn the endless night you whisper endless praise
Swear to god that you won't change

Don't want to be your lover
Don't want to be your friend
Faith takes me over

So just let me pretend
You're not real, vision surreal
Spirit charms

Don't want to be your lover
Don't want to be your friend

If I fall in love, will you forgive me
If I lose my way, will you choose me
If I change my mind, will you change me...


The desert. 7am. I dreamt of her, as I've been doing every night for weeks now. It's frustrating, and yet strangely comforting. In my dreams, I can make everything perfect. I don't have to worry about anything. Dreaming is the only time I'm truly free. If only I could sleep more... I delight in the solace my dreams provide me.

She is the first thing I see when my eyes open.. my beautiful Maria. but she's not really mine. *She could be, if you would go to her.. she loves you.* Perhaps I should listen more to my dreams...

Running again. Back to my apartment this time... back to reality. Back to my cowardice... but I've been afraid for too long. Things have changed.. suddenly I think of Hank. The man who taught me to fear. Gone now, like a faded vision. A chapter of my life closed... a new one to start. It's all in my hands now.I won't be afraid any longer.

As soon as I get through the door, I'm imagining Maria. Puttering around in the kitchen, aromatherapy candles scattered around the room. Smiling as she sees my face. It's a shame she doesn't smile much anymore. With all that's happened, is it so suprising?

I have the power to make her smile again. Never see her glistening silver tears run down her beautiful face anymore. Frightening and intruiguing all at once... no more fear. Just go to her.

I travel the familiar path to her house. I've never been in, but I watch her occasionally. Doing homework, reading magazines, playing with those perfumes she makes... I like to watch her move. She's graceful beyond words.

Tonight a pensive expression is on her face. She's looking at something... a picure of me, I realize. Freshman yearbook. It would bring a smile to my face.. if only she didn't seem so sad. Panic grips my limbs. What if I hurt her for the last time? What if she doesn't want to go through the tornado of emotions that is Michael Guerin anymore. I would understand.. but I'd be crushed. Maybe it's what I deserve right now.

She catches a glimpse of my reflection in her window, and stares for a moment before making her way over to me. After what seems like hours, the window slides open."What are *you* doing here?" she hisses. I'm not sure what to say to that. What can I possibly say to explain my actions last night? I can feel myself flush when I murmur "I need to talk to you."

She looks suprised, and then wary. "What do you need to talk to me about? You made things blatently clear last night." Maria, my beautiful Maria...

"I'm so sorry!" I blurt. At least I got it out in a coherent manner. I've wanted to say that forever now. "I'm.. I'm sorry, Maria. I just..."

"Spit it out," she says. For a split second, I'm defeated. Until I see the teasing twinkle in her eyes.

She motions for me to come in, and leads me to her bed, where she sits not two feet away from me. The proximity makes my head spin. I dare to hope...

"Maria.... I was scared last night. It all happened so quickly... I... I..." I lower my head, so she won't see the vunerability I know I can't hide. "I want you. I need you. I... I love you. I have for a long time."

Her gaze never leaves my face. "Say it again," she says quietly.

Instantly, my exasperation takes over. Years of practice, I guess. "You know, nevermind. It doesn't really matter."

As I get up- to run, once again- she grabs my arm. And I see things. Maria, 7 years old, crying into her mother's arms at the loss of her father. Maria, 11 years old, crying into Liz's arms because a boy she really liked had finally kissed her- on a dare. He didn't like her back. Maria, 16 years old, crying by herself, the night of the rave. I need to tell her... I need her to know that she doesn't always have to be alone. The boys won't always leave her.

And, unbidden, I can sense that she feels my emotions. Everything I've felt since September. She knows. Beyond a doubt, she knows.

"So what did you want me to repeat?"

"I think.... you just told me."

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