|"Make You Mine"
Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters, they belong to the WB, and
the song lyrics that I used belong to Dru Hill. They are not all in the
right order, but they are all part of the song. All the nonsuing stuff
Summary: A Michael and Isabel fic.
Category: Unconventional Couples
Authors Note: My first fanfic. Ever. For anything. Don't be too hard on me.
|And beauty is her name
Max was long gone, after a very unproductive conversation. They hadn't figured anything out, just wasted time accusing each other about which one was neglecting Isabel more. Nothing accomplished, nothing gained.
He thought back to when Max told him how Isabel cried herself to sleep every night. His heart had lurched at that part, but he hadn't showed it. Every night? Max used to do that, he knew, when he first lived with the Evans, but Isabel? When she was little, Max told him that she had cried every night wondering where he was. It had been a long time though since she had been like that. He wondered what was bothering her and what he could do. But he knew the answer. He would do nothing. He could do nothing. Everytime he got around Isabel, he thought about his destiny. And he didn't want to think about his destiny. So as much as he missed her and wanted to help, he was grateful to her, because by avoiding him she saved him the trouble of trying to avoid her.
I'm hoping I can make you mine
She and Kyle were eating ice cream at the local ice cream shop and talking. After spending a good half hour convincing him that she could not read minds, at least not like that, he had finally settled down, completely embarrassed that he had freaked over her lucky guess.
Now they were talking. Really talking.
She had had no idea that he had a thing for Tess. That there had been mutual attraction going on. That he couldn't get Tess off his mind and it was made worse by the fact that she was staying with him and that all she could do was rant about Max. And that he didn't have any one to talk to. His guy friends? No way, they would laugh their asses off. His dad? His dad was to preoccupied with work and keeping the aliens' secrets. Liz? Liz had way too much on her mind, he could testify to that personally.
Isabel tried to question him about that, but he clammed up so she changed the subject. She went back to Tess.
"It's not just that she's attractive, although she is, she really, really is, but I like her as well. And she's the first girl I've liked since Liz. And how much does it suck that once again the girl I have a thing for has a thing for Max." Kyle looked beseechingly at Isabel over his banana split. "I don't know what to do. I know she has some sort of destiny thing with Max, but I can't stop thinking about her. I don't even want to. And all she thinks of is Max." He sighed. "What's good for her, but not for me is that they've been spending more time together. I've never seen her happier. I'm glad she's happy. I am. I really am. I just wish that she could be that happy with me."
And once your beauty is mine
Michael walked down the street to the Crashdown. He wasn't having any luck solving problems at home, so he decided to eat. Tobasco sauce was known for helping his thought processes. He also had to be at work, but that was minor compared to food.
He was engaged in said thought processes when something dragged him out of his reverie. He spied Isabel through the clear glass window of the ice cream parlor. She was eating ice cream, which was normal enough. But she was eating it with Kyle Valenti, which wasn't. He watched them for a moment, watched as they talked easily, and envied it. He could see that there was no pretense between them. He felt his stomach lurch as Kyle gazed at Isabel. Then he felt it drop as Isabel put her hand on Kyle's. Isabel wasn't being the cold Isabel. She was showing Kyle the real Isabel.
The one that could easily come off as cold and reserved, but was really very warm and comforting. The one that gave all she had or didn't give anything at all. The one that always protected those she cared for, those that were lucky to become close to her. Not easy, she was very selective, very guarded against outsiders. But once you were in, you were one of hers. And she always took care of her own.
She looked like she was taking care of Kyle now.
Michael just watched. Watched as Isabel listened to whatever Kyle was saying, like she used to listen to him. Watched as she gave her complete attention, so complete that she didn't notice him in the window. And Kyle wasn't looking anywhere except at Isabel. And then Micheal thought, why would he? Isabel Evans is sitting in front of him giving him the gift of her undivided attention. Why would he look at anyone else? Why would he care if anyone else was there? Who would?
He had. Many times. And he could kick himself now.
In my eyes you are so beautiful
Isabel looked at Kyle with new eyes. She had always thought him shallow and selfish. But he had admitted that he had changed, so maybe that was what he used to be. She felt for him now like she never had before. She understood his pain. Understood and wanted to help.
"You can't give up on her, Kyle." She looked at him intently. "You can't."
Kyle rubbed his hands over his eyes, then looked at her hopelessly. "What am I supposed to do? Lay my heart out to her and watch as she walks all over it so she can get to Max? Pine for her day and night while she's out pining for him? Oh, wait, I already do that. Any more ideas?"
"She needs you Kyle", Isabel began, and watched as Kyle laughed but without humor.
"She doesn't need me Isabel. She needs what she wants and what she wants is Max. I'm not like all of you. How could she possibly need me?"
She grabbed his hands, he looked at her surprised. "Listen to me", she said fiercely. Kyle shut up. "She does need you. Max will never, ever love her like he does Liz. Even if it is over now, there will always be a part of him that is just for Liz, no matter what has happened. Even if he grows to love her, it will never be completely. Part of him will always belong to Liz. Tess needs to realize this."
"She doesn't and she won't."
Isabel groaned frustratedly. "Listen Kyle, listen to me! You can give her what Max cannot. You want her for her. You want to be with her just because she's Tess, not because she's there. If Max ever wants her, it will only be because he can't have Liz. It will never be because of who she is. It will never just be for Tess. He will never want her if he can have Liz." She looked at him imploringly, "But you want her, just her. Nobody else. In time she will realize how important that is."
"And how much time will that take?" Kyle asked. "I'm no saint Isabel, I can't promise that I'll wait forever. You're right, she may realize in time that she doesn't want someone that doesn't really want her, but what if I realize that first? What if I realize that Tess will always want Max? That I'll be her second best? What advice do you have for that?"
Isabel looked away from the pain his eyes held, unable to answer, unable to help.
When I'm down and out
Michael walked on to the Crashdown, trying to ignore what he was feeling. The thoughts just kept flooding into his head, he couldn't dam the flow. Kyle and Isabel? When had that happened? Is that where she had been lately? With Kyle? Michael felt a chill as he thought of what Max had said. "She comes home late..."
Was Kyle the reason?
Then he wondered why he cared. Didn't he have girls after him? He was sure he did. And of course there was Maria. Wasn't Isabel free to do what she liked? And at least Kyle knew already, she didn't have to keep secrets, he and Max didn't have to worry about anyone else finding out. So he didn't care. Not at all. Isabel could be with whomever she liked. He could be with anyone as well. Not a problem.
No reason to feel like hell.
He entered the Crashdown, saw Maria looking cute in her goofy little uniform. He gave her a wide smile.
"Hey, how's work."
She barely glanced at him. "Same as always. Work." She looked up from an order she was writing. "But you wouldn't know, would you. Being twenty minutes late and all."
He glanced at his wrist, but realized he didn't wear a watch. "Am I? I didn't even know. I'm real sorry."
Maria glared at him suspiciously. "Whatever, Spaceboy."
He stood there, smiling inanely.
"You were supposed to be in the kitchen, like, yesterday. Go."
"Sure. Let me know if you need anything."
It was said entirely without sarcasm. Maria watched him walk to the kitchen, wondering what was going on.
Cause you are wonderful
Isabel and Kyle walked slowly down the street. Kyle looked over at her. She looked like he felt, and he figured it wasn't just because of him.
"So what about you Isabel? What's on your mind?" He looked at her seriously. "You were there for me. Let me be there for you."
She flashed him another smile. He wondered if anyone else had been so graced lately. "It's nothing Kyle. Nothing important."
They stopped in front of the Crashdown. Isabel glanced inside. Michael was inside smiling cheerfully at Maria. Smiling cheerfully? So it was. She looked away quickly, a lump in her throat. Kyle looked back to see what had caught her attention and had affected her so much. He knew much more when he looked back at Isabel.
"Let's not go in", he said, touching her comfortingly on her shoulder. "Let's just keep walking."
Isabel nodded. They walked further down the street before he stopped. She looked at him inquiringly.
"Do you want to tell me about it? About him?"
Isabel tried to laugh it off. "About who?"
Kyle cut her laughter short. "You don't have to act with me. I told you my dark secret about Tess. I trust you. Can't you trust me?"
She looked at his earnest face and relented. "You were right. It is about Michael."
"Aren't you destined? Destined to be with each other?"
"Destiny doesn't force emotion that you don't feel. It doesn't change the way you feel about another person. Destiny doesn't do anything except create problems. You know it and what it is and then you know that you won't, that you can't follow it."
"But you could." Kyle knew this. In as little time as he had gotten to know Isabel, that one look had betrayed her to him. He knew she could follow her destiny, knew that she wanted to. From what she had just said, it seemed as if she had wanted to long before she knew her destiny.
She nodded resignedly. "Yes. I could. But so what? What does it matter? He couldn't. He can't, he doesn't want to. And I wouldn't push it, ever. I don't want to lose, I can't lose, him. Even if it is just him as a friend. Even if it will never be anything more." She looked down, then back at Kyle. "I don't want to jeopardize what I have by pushing for what I may never get."
"But what if he wants it too?"
Isabel looked at Kyle for a moment, hope in her eyes. With a toss of her head, the hope was gone. "But he doesn't, Kyle. He never has. And if he ever did, it would be because it is convenient." She smiled sadly at him. "I won't be second best either."
"And if he loves you like you love him?"
Isabel laughed hollowly. "What makes you think I love him?"
"You do. I can tell. When I first saw you two together, I thought you were a couple. I was confused when he dated Maria and you dated Alex. You two are both hard to read, but some things you can't hide. You love him. I know that you do. You don't have to pretend with me, you don't have to lie."
She nodded again. "You're right. I do. I have for a long time. I always had feelings, but I didn't recognize what they were until that one time he almost died. I knew what I felt then and I couldn't hide them from myself anymore. I wish I could though."
"And if he loves you like you love him?" Kyle repeated.
"He doesn't Kyle. He never has and he never will." She closed her eyes. "I may be used to it, but it still hurts. More than anything else ever has."
And I'm dying to make you see
He was being nice to Maria. It was trying, but he was ignoring all her sarcastic comments and keeping a smile on his face. He didn't realize that she thought that psychopaths probably wore the same smile before they went on a killing spree. His constant smile was freaking her out.
After another genial exchange with him, Maria lashed out. "What is it with you today? Did E.T. phone home or something?"
"What are you talking about?"
"I'm sorry. Do I have to speak some sort of alien language to communicate with you?"
"What is your deal? Your problem? Your difficulty? What is up with you? You are acting weird, weirder than usual, and you are totally freaking me out."
"I'm being nice."
"I know, and it's freaking me out." Maria eyed him like he was about to sprout tentacles.
"What? I can't be nice?"
"Obviously you can, but you never have before. What's going on in that alien brain of yours?"
Michael slammed a pan down, making Maria jump. "What's going on in that blond head of yours?" He pretended to think for a moment. "Oh, yeah, nothing as usual. Why don't you get back to work? I can't do my job with you distracting me."
Maria sputtered indignantly for a moment and then huffed off. Michael rolled his eyes as she left. "Women", he muttered, as he cooked what felt like his millionth burger. "You can't live with them...why would you want to?"
He watched Maria surreptitiously. If she hadn't ruined his perfectly good attempt at being nice to her, he probably could have taken her out tonight. He had quickly decided that there was no use in avoiding her. Destiny didn't matter, enemies didn't matter, and Maria wanted him. Why push her away? What reason was there?
A reason quickly popped into his head, but he drove it away. No reasons, none at all. He looked at Maria, and prepared to go apologize. Why? He didn't know. She had started it all, but she wouldn't feel better without an apology, so he figured he'd get it over with. He was about to approach her when Alex came in like a whirlwind and grabbed her away from the customer she was serving.
"I need to talk to you", he heard Alex say to her urgently as he dragged her to the back room.
Michael, completely interested and worried, thinking that it might somehow concern aliens, went to the side door and tried to listen. He began catching a few words.
"...spent all week working up my nerve..."
"...are you talking about..."
"...you want him, don't you? But I want..."
"...about Isabel? You've always liked her. She's so beautiful, so..."
"...not you. I hid it from myself. I liked her but ever since we were little...."
"...are you saying? No, I don't believe it. What about Michael? What about..."
Michael couldn't take it anymore, so he eased the door open carefully, peering around until he saw them. And he saw them right as Alex swept Maria up into a kiss. He was shocked, he couldn't move.
"I care about her", Alex was saying now, "But not like I care for you. Just give me a chance Maria." Alex gazed at her sincerely. "You don't have to hurt anymore. I want to give you what you want. I want to be there for you."
"I don't know what to say," Maria said, looking up at him.
He put a finger to her lips. "Don't say anything now. Just remember what I said and think about it. I'm not pressuring you, and I don't want to lose you as a friend. I just want you to know how I feel, and that whenever you're ready, if you ever are, I'm here. Here for you."
Alex began to walk away, and Michael ducked out quickly before he was seen. But not before he saw the tears and hope in Maria's eyes. Not before he realized that as much as he cared for Maria, she wanted what he couldn't give her. But Alex could. So although part of him was jealous, another part of him was relieved. Alex was just what Maria needed, Michael hoped that she would soon realize that. She deserved to be happy. Knowing that she had a chance to be happy would make it easier to walk away.
She came out of the room wiping her eyes. Then she looked at him.
"What did Alex want?" Michael asked innocently.
She looked at him suspiciously. None of your business, her expression said clearly.
Michael looked at her, and she looked back, her eyes troubled. And even though he had began work with the intent to ask her out, he knew he couldn't and shouldn't play games with her feelings. Or use her to hide his.
Still, all the old emotions weren't that far away. He walked up to her and touched her face gently. "Do whatever you need to do to be happy Maria. But don't hold on to the past just because you are scared of the future." Good advice to himself as well. "But don't fake an emotion you don't feel. It won't turn out well."
She looked at him, not questioning that he knew or how he knew. She knew him too well for that. "What if I don't have to fake it? What if it was always there, just never awakened?"
"Go with what you want. Follow your heart."
She sighed, looking at him with regret. "It's not always that easy. Your heart isn't as logical as your mind, and it isn't always sure of what it wants."
"Then wait, and let it figure it out."
"Time doesn't always solve everything. It doesn't always change everything. I still love you, Michael. But I think of Alex, and I see happiness there. I don't love him, but I could. But what about you? What I feel for you?"
He kissed her gently on the forehead. "I know you are important to me, you always will be. But things are changing, not only between us, but with everyone. You made me able to love, you opened me up. I'm not a stone wall anymore." He stared at her. "But this is now. And we've been through too much to play with each other."
|Part 1 | Index | Part 3
|Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours