Category: M/M – Maria’s POV. You’re reading correctly, this is my first (and only) candy fic. Some Dreamer of course, but Candy centered.
Summary: The first chapter pretty much sums it up...a short fluffy(ish) fic.
Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to Roswell or it’s characters. I just like to dust them off and use them a bit, but I’ll put them back when I’m done.
A/N – Some of you may or may not know; this story is being brought to you by special request (and donation) by Nibbles2. She won me in the Support Stacie Author Auction last month. This is my 5,000- word (a bit more than that) story. This will be posted in parts, daily. Special thanks to Raychel for helping during my panic moment for a title. The fic however, you have to thank Nibbles2 for.
Also for those of you who also don’t know, with the exception of completing Unbreakable, this is my final Roswell story. So you REALLY should thank Nibbles2 *lol*. I hope you enjoy and thank you.
The Pregnant Pause
I never asked for much out of life, I never expected the best things to happen to me suddenly because I had wished them. Except when it came to one of my best friends, Michael Guerin. He was that one unattainable force I couldn’t leave be. He consumes hours of my time. It was hard not to think of him, since I live with him and our other best friend Max Evans.
The mini-obsession, as I like to refer to it, didn’t start from our first meeting. In fact, I had known Max and Michael for most of my life. After college the guys moved in together, to further sow their wild oats in unison, under the comfort of their own home.
I had other friends, both girls and guys; but never best friends, and one small rescue from Max had pretty much sealed my fate. I was living with this guy, Robert, I had been dating him on and off for a year. I knew at the time I shouldn’t have said yes, when he made the suggestion that we live together, but the prospect of still living at home with my newly married mother just didn’t sit well.
I found out pretty early on that Robert had wanted more than I was willing to give. I paid rent after all, and it wasn’t as if I was looking for a free ride.
Riding however was exactly all Robert thought about. All the ways I could ride him. I now tuck all those thoughts away, but I can remember very clearly the night I left Robert’s house. All my bags were packed and I threw them into the trunk of my car, and decided for once in my life I would try and be reckless.
I stopped by the local bar to get as drunk as humanly possible. After all, what was there for me to look forward to? I was a twenty-seven, dead-end job holding, in love with her best friend, virgin.
Everything was clear to me that night; I was destined to be alone forever. My life up until that point simply was a blueprinting of what my future would be like. I’m not a pessimist; it’s just that if everything in life always turned out bad, what would you call it? Bad luck, I guess some would say, but I don't believe in luck. It always comes back to bite you in the ass, okay…so maybe I am a wee bit of a pessimist. Sue me.
Things, however changed for me the moment I walked into that bar and saw Max sitting alone, drink in hand. I thought for a second that I should leave, but almost instantly he caught sight of me. He waved me over and I went, one lead foot in front of the other. I’d scanned the bar quickly, thankfully no sign of Michael and continued on.
“What’s going on Deluca? You in a bar, I never thought I’d see the day,” Max had said with a smile on his face. Max has a great smile it reaches his amber tinted eyes. I remember thinking, why couldn’t I have fallen in love with him? It would have been easier, Max didn’t hide his feelings. If he liked you, you knew it, and if he didn’t well, let’s just say one couldn’t miss the signs.
Michael on the other hand, was a closed book. Fort Knox, if you will, of emotions. Never showed them. And he only ever lost his temper with Max or myself. I often wondered why, but never really put too much stock into figuring it out.
“Yeah, well, rough life. I figure I take up drinking, to ease the way until I’m too old to walk.” It was that statement that had Max facing me immediately. Using his exceptional woman-scanning capabilities and then asking, “What the fuck did he do to you?”
It was pointless to lie to Max; I wasn’t very good at it. With Michael however, I could lie like it was nobody’s business. Max just had a knack for reading people so damn clearly. Except, more recently, with his new girlfriend, he was having one hell of a time trying to figure Liz Parker out.
I knew, whether Michael was there or not, that he would have agreed with everything Max had said, even the part about me moving in with them.
It was four years ago to the day, and how I’ve lasted so long holding in my feelings, I’ll never know. I moved in that night and never left. Aside of the small adjustment of rooms, everything was running smoothly.
That is until today, until Michael and Max came home tonight. We just finished dinner in silence, another first.
“So what’s going on? You two are way more quiet than what is acceptable?” I laugh lightly, trying to cut through the tension. They’re lips don’t even curl a little.
“Max?” I turn to him, he’ll tell me.
“Maria, it’s probably better if we leave this one alone for the night.” Feeling offended, and just a little terrified, I let my mind sink into Max’s choice of words. And then it hits me, Max had already figured out my feelings for Michael. Well damn, damn, damn! Would he tell Michael? They told each other everything.
On the bright side, if there were one in such a situation, Michael would know my feelings, he could shoot me down and I could finally move on. Yeah right!
I push a little, “You sure?”
Michael groans as he pushes a hand through his already disheveled brown locks, “Oh just tell her, she’s going to find out anyway.”
Max looks uncomfortable, and then he says, “April, thinks she’s pregnant.” I blink, my mouth suddenly goes dry and my heart, my poor heart begins to punch against my chest. And horrifyingly, the stinging of fresh hot tears burn the backs of my eyes.
Finding my voice, I ask the one question, the only one that matters right now, “Is it…if she is…is it yours?” While I direct the question to Michael, I stare at the ground.
When I hear no response, I chance a glance up at him; he waits, and then nods his head once. I’m not sure what happens next because I excuse myself and bolt into the kitchen.
A few minutes later, though, Max comes in to check on me. “I see you didn’t fling yourself into the oven, so it’s safe to enter,” he jokes lightly, my lips curl in a reluctant smile. I turn and see him peeking his dark head in the door. It’s hard not to love him; Liz is one lucky girl, I hope she realizes it.
“Yeah, well I shouldn’t have expected anything less. The way you two have spread yourselves over the years, it was bound to happen.” I try for nonchalance, but by the look on his face I have failed miserably. At least I wasn’t crying like a basket case. I’ll save that for later. Much, much later, under covers.
He crosses the room and takes a seat on the stool in front of the counter, plops himself down, even though I have threatened if he and Michael continue to abuse the furniture, I’m buying bean bags for every room. “No fair! I have a girlfriend now, and I don’t cheat,” he says while eyeing me warily.
“I know Max. It’s just…” I don’t know what, but he seems to understand. He reaches out his hand against the counter top towards me and I step closer and clasp his. I’m so thankful I have him in my life.
“So how is Liz doing?” I try to sound casual, trying to avoid any subject that involves he who shall remain nameless. I wonder if Liz has spoken to Max yet.
“Great! Yeah, I don’t know Maria, I’ve never felt this way about anyone…it’s different with her.” And then he gets that far away look, he always does when talking about Liz, and I can’t help but smile. Why can’t Michael think of me and look like that? Why is it so hard? Why do you always love the ones you shouldn’t?
I tell him honestly, “I’m glad. You deserve it.”
“So do you,” he says and then opens his mouth to say something else, but Michael bursts into the kitchen, holding a purple and white stick.
Oh shit! The pregnancy test Liz left in the bathroom. Well, hell, how to explain this one away?
“What the fuck is this?” he barks out, his voice accusing and his eyes a blazing brown zero in, right in on me.
“While I am not an expert in the field, I would say, in my limited experience, that it’s a pregnancy test,” I offer objectively.
“I know that!” he snaps, then adds, “Is it yours?” I swallow my smart retort, because I made a promise and for all my other faults, the one thing I’m not is a snitch.
“Yeah, so what?” I say with a roll of my shoulder. Like it’s not a big deal that I took a pregnancy test. Let’s not forget the fact that I have no boyfriend to speak of, but that’s none of Michael’s business that’s for damn sure. I glance at Max and see that he is frozen in place, searching me for signs, but I blink for what seems like the tenth time in the span of thirty seconds, and remove all emotion from my face. I just can’t look at Max, must not make eye contact.
I could lie to Michael, at that, I am a damn professional.
Michael enters the room fully, and immediately crowds my personal space, and I tell him as much.
“I don’t give a damn about your personal space,” he growls. Boy, he’s in a bit of a temper today. Obviously this girlfriend, or whatever she is to him, possibly being pregnant really got to him. Michael wasn’t ready to be a father to anyone, and he sure as hell didn’t love what’s her name enough to even try to commit. I can empathize with the horror he must be feeling, knowing yet another pregnancy test was being taken behind his back…so to speak.
Max, finally unfrozen, jumps up to stand between us, but Michael dismisses him and holds the stick up to my face. I step back and lean against the cool fridge, being in this close proximity to him, is too much for me. I end up getting distracted by his hair, his eyes, his lips, his…
“You think you’re fucking pregnant?” Comes this scathing, barking voice erupting from inside of him. I can’t help but shrink away, not from fear, but oddly enough he’s even more appealing because he sounds as if he’s protective. Of course I know he’s protective of me as a friend, but not even Max is acting this way.
Speaking of Max, he jumps back in between us and pushes Michael away from me, giving us a nice distance, but Michael tells him to back off a little. While Max relents he stands on the sidelines.
“Are you going to answer the question,” he asks and I answer, “No.”
“Bullshit! Whose baby would it be?” he asks, and defiantly I respond, “None, of your business.”
“Oh it’s my business. Who is he Maria? Another asshole, loser you’re dating?” That stung. So I don’t have the best taste in men, but that doesn’t say much about Michael, now did it? It was best to keep that revelation to myself, for now.
“I think I already responded to the question. Now, can I have my test back?” I reach out my palm, but instead of placing it there, Michael throws it in the sink beside me and leans down, our eyes meet. Max be damned, because he already moved away giving us space. The last thing I need is space from Michael, especially close personal space. Well, actually when I put it that way...
“Tell me who the son of a bitch is, or I’ll guess, and you won’t like that.”
“Are you threatening me?”
With a quirk of his lips and a lifting of one brow, I think I just fell a little more in love with him. I am hopeless.
“It’s only a threat, if I don’t make good on it. But you can be rest assured, I’ll make damn well good on it. Now tell me who it is.”
“It doesn’t matter, Michael. I’m not with him anymore and besides, look who’s talking; you may have gotten what’s her name pregnant. Talk about cat calling the kettle…” His eyes are completely focused on me and I’m trying to remember if I’ve ever made direct eye contact with Michael for longer than a few seconds. It was always so hard, with the whole heart beating out of whack and everything.
“Enough! This isn’t about me. And besides I’m sure she’s not. She just wants to keep me around, but she knows damn well I won’t commit to her.”
“Hmm…I wonder why? Could it be you don’t know how?” I retort blandly.
My words give him pause, he takes a step back and shakes his head. “I just don’t feel like it, that’s all,” he defends, very weakly.
“Right,” I say, with mock disapproval and a shake of my head.
His brown eyes narrow at that. “What the hell is that supposed to mean?”
“It means, you couldn’t commit to being with one woman. Some men can, some can’t. It’s life. And honestly your girlfriend should understand this, since I’m sure you gave her the rules before all the debauchery started.” I wave off the statement casually; I think I’m doing an excellent acting job. Good thing I haven’t looked at Max once.
Michael actually growls and then closes in on me again, I can smell his light cologne, and all my senses are rendered frozen. I’m not scared, Michael wouldn’t harm a single blond hair on my head.
Sexy, yes he is sexy. God, could I be more pathetic?
“Maybe none of the girls I’m with are worth committing to, do you ever think that? And maybe I haven’t found one that I was willing to change for, and while we’re at it, did you ever think that I just don’t want to.”
There is something about his face, his words, it was more depth into his mind, and his feelings than I’ve ever been privy to. Something changes between us, or maybe it’s just me. Maybe I’m just tired of waiting, maybe I just need to know once and for all.
His words leaving me speechless, give me but one retort left to strike back with. I lift my chin up and look him straight in the eyes and say, “Yeah, because everyone wants to be alone, forever.”
And there, right there in our shared kitchen, I raise myself up onto my tiptoes and kiss him.