Disclaimer: Roswell is owned by WB, no infringement is intended.
Authors Note: I guess I'm dabbling. Normally an X-Files fic writer, so this is new for me. Excuse the mistakes, I don't know this show like I know XF.
|Michael rubbed the stone through his fingers, the cool smoothness chilling
his skin. He wanted to feel something from these rocks, wanted to find some
connection that Max and Isabel had overlooked. There was something just
flickering at the edges of his mind--
stinging sand as the wind slashed it into his eyes, sun beating thick and dusty on his head, the shimmering mirage of acceptance just out of his reach--
These were constant in his mind. The feel of being abandoned, the fear of not knowing, not knowing, not knowing. He didn't know who he was, or what he was, or where he had come from. The stones had to tell him something.
"Glow or something!"
Growling, Michael tossed the stone into the corner of his living room, in his new apartment, bought with his new emancipated manhood. He grinned at the dank, stained place and found pride in the sparse furnishings. Who cared about the stones? So they weren't telling him anything...so what? He had this place, his sanctuary, his salvation, and he had himself.
He had himself.
The door rattled under a light knock and Michael dragged himself off the couch to open it. Maria was standing on the other side, her blonder hair flipped out, of course, and those lips--
He sighed as she pushed her way inside.
"It's a mess in here, Michael."
"Yeah, well it's my place, right?"
She frowned, but he knew she would drop it. She had come there for a purpose, and he would find out why soon enough. He crossed his arms and leaned against the refridgerator, watching her prowl through his apartment.
"Are you looking for something?" he said finally, in his dry unamused voice.
She made a face at him and his lips twitched only minimally. It was getting harder and harder for him to pretend she didn't affect him, and he could tell that she knew it.
"You really need to clean--"
"Just get on with it, Maria. I don't have time to talk about my lack of cleaning skills."
"Jeez, sorry. I just thought you could use some help--"
"With what? I know it's a mess. I don't need you to tell me that."
Maria crossed her arms as well and Michael sighed heavily. There was always going to be something with them; he couldn't talk to her without getting into a fight.
"Forget it, just forget it," she said and held her hands up.
"I came over here because...."
He raised an eyebrow, waiting. She fidgeted, threading her fingers through the ratty blanket on the back of his couch. Her lips were held tight in her all too familiar pout and her thin angular shoulders were pale islands in the sea of her blue backless shirt. He could see where the thin spaghetti straps tied around her neck and at the small of her back and he wanted to run his fingers along her spine...
"What do you want?" he growled.
She jerked up, stiff and straight, blinking at him with her scowling eyes.
"I came over here to invite you to dinner. My mom wants to meet you ah, formally."
He grinned, remembering her mother's frantic early morning discovery, and his own panic as he fled her house. But Maria had stood up for him, and her mother had gotten him off the hook with Sheriff Valenti about his missing foster father. He also remembered what had brought him to her house, cold and numb and ready to cry in her arms.
His smile turned into a scowl and he looked to the floor.
"Yeah, dinner, Michael. What normal human beings eat at night. Oh, oops, I'm sorry. I must have--"
"Can the sarcasm, Maria. You don't have to get defensive. Dinner. I'd be glad to go to dinner. When?"
She took a step back, mouth dropping open as she stared. He gave her a brief grin, secretly delighted he had thrown her so completely. She didn't know him like she thought she did.
"Yes, Maria, when?"
He walked slowly up to her, hands out to touch her shoulders as soon as the white skin was within reach. Running his long fingers across her shoulders, he could feel her shiver. Her head titled down to stare at her shoes and he smiled to himself.
Before, he had been trying to feel something from those stones, and now, he was feeling something all right, but from the warm pliant skin of Maria. Shaking his head, Michael stepped back, running a hand down his face to clear the impressions from his mind.
"Dinner's at six. Tomorrow."
Maria was looking at him now, her eyes raised defiantly, as if to proclaim to him that she still had her control. She cocked her head at him and smiled arrogantly.
"Six," he repeated and backed away.
She sighed and turned to the door, leaving him alone again.
She smiled wistfully, but let herself out. He had made his choice.
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