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Butterfly Dreams, Part Nine: Moving Out

Reply to Alerion

Posted to the RoswellSlash mailing list December 6, 2001

Disclaimers: see Chapter 1



        Isabel drove me home. I expected her to come in but she pulled up and let me out.

        'Uh, Isabel...'

        'Sorry, Max, you're not on your own but there's going to a huge argument and I need to be around afterwards to pick up the pieces.'

        'Oh great. Thanks, Iz.'

        'Good luck, little brother.'

        'How angry are they?'

        'Really angry. Good luck. You might need it.'

        She smiled sweetly. I think it's the sort of smile that makes most of Roswell West High's male population go weak at the knees. It didn't effect me that way. Inside, I found Dad walking up and down in the living room. My mother was sitting there, not saying anything.

        Dad glared when I came in. My gut turned over. 'Max, your mother and I want to have a serious talk with you.' He kept pacing.

        'Yes, dad.'

        'Max you've been out of control for months. You disappear and turn up in Las Vegas. You wreck your car. Alex and Tess die in a suicide pact.'

        'Dad, its not...' My father cut me off as though he hadn't even heard me.

        'How would you expect your mother and I to feel if we had to go to the morgue to identify you?'

        'That's not going to happen, dad.'

        My mother said, 'Philip, I think you should sit down.'

        'How do I know we won't find you at the morgue? It happened to the Whitmans with Alex. It happened to Jim Valenti. You need to get control of your life again, Max. You've always made us proud before.'

        'Philip!' my mother blurted.

        Dad went on as if she had not spoken. 'And this latest stunt. I'm not sure I want you spending time with the Valenti boy. It doesn't look good.'

        'What do you mean about Kyle, dad?'

        'Look he might be your friend, Max but his father was sacked as sheriff and we all know what the grandfather was like.'

        'What are you saying? That Kyle's crazy?'

        'Of course not, Max. I'm just worried. Your therapist says you haven't been keeping your appointments.

        'The therapy doesn't do anything for me.'

        'Well something has to. Things can't go on like this. I don't want you seeing the Valenti kid. He's bad news, Max.'

        'Philip, don't do this.'

        'Diane, we have to do something here.'

        'Dad, please don't talk about Kyle that way.'

        'See, Diane? He cares more about Kyle Valenti's opinion than ours.' Before my mother could answer him, he said: 'Max. Your mother and I want you to promise you'll live by our rules in future and go back to seeing your therapist.'

        'I'm sorry, dad. I just can't do that.'

        'Why not, Max? We're trying to understand here. We're trying to support you here.'

        I charged upstairs and threw some things into a tote bag. My throat felt like someone had pushed a blunt knife through it. My mother came to the door of my room.

        'Honey, please come downstairs and tell your father you'll do as he says.'

        'I'm sorry, I just can't.' I felt worse when my mother hugged me, because I knew I couldn't give in. She pressed some money into my hand.

        'Where will you go, honey?'

        'I don't know yet. I'll make sure Iz knows.'

        'Honey, why can't you just do what your father asks?' She dabbed at her eyes. I hated what this was doing to her.

        'You know I don't want to hurt you or dad.'

        'Honey...'

        'I have to go now before I hurt you anymore.'

        'You don't have to go anywhere, Max. This is your home. We both love you. We want to help you.'

        'I know that.' I shouldered the tote bag. She did not follow me downstairs. My father did not look at me when I headed for the front door.

        I had no idea where to go. I thought about Michael's but I knew that wouldn't work. Michael and Kyle would just snipe at each other 24 hours a day. Liz was probably with Sean and anyway she'd made it clear I was not her favourite person right now. I looked back at the house. Tears kept trying to force themselves out and I kept trying to shut them in. Everything felt like slow motion, frozen somehow. The door of my house stayed shut.

        Finding somewhere to eat seemed like a good idea. The streets felt foreign, like I'd never lived there. I wandered without really knowing where I was. Time to try and work out what to do. I sat on the curb side.

        A pickup cruised past and they yelled something. A guy with a tote bag sitting in the gutter must have looked like a fair target. Time to move on. The centre of town didn't look so good when I got there - too many bright lights and too much chance of running into someone. Sitting in the park on my own seemed a better idea.

        Too much has happened. I should have found some help after Pierce. Then I might have been strong enough to stay out of the whole thing with Tess. She always felt wrong, from when she first came to Roswell and tried to force me to love her. Tess said she could show me our home world but she was always clearest thing I could see. If I'd thought about it I would have known why. Then Alex died and I couldn't bear thinking that Tess had done it. Liz went on a crusade. I knew Tess was the only one of us capable of murder. Trying to think about Tess killing Alex just dumped my brain in glue so I couldn't think about anything.

        My watch showed midnight. It was getting really late. Maybe I should just go back and tell my parents about the whole alien thing. And throw in being queer for good measure. I winced. Michael would just want a fight if I went there. Kyle's was out of the question, too dangerous for Kyle. I was on my own.

        Suddenly I knew someone was following me, looking for me. I looked over my shoulder. No-one in sight. Great, I was sinking into panic about nothing. Kyle's words from yesterday drummed in my head: 'Why not just send someone after you with a high-powered rifle?' I looked around the park again.

        It felt like time to move on. The park was empty but now I knew I was being hunted. If it happened here no-one would know.

        I just sat there, not caring anymore. I could hear someone now, hear them moving towards me in the darkness. I didn't care any more. I shoved fists in my eyes to block everything out. The hunter was right behind me. A hand fell on my shoulder.

        I swung round, hand out, threw my forcefield up.

        Kyle said: 'What's happening, Max? I've been going crazy.'

        'Why?' I closed my hand and the forcefield vanished.

        'I'm seeing this stupid alien boyfriend who won't let me know when he needs me. All he does is beam sad shit into my brain.'

        'Sorry, I wasn't thinking straight. I thought you were...'

        Kyle punched me softly in the gut. 'I don't want you thinking straight, remember?'

        'My dad said I had to spend more time with that therapist he sent me to. I said "No". He said I have to live by his rules or move out. Here I am.'

        'Max, I'm sorry.' He wiped my face with his sleeve.

        'Kyle, everything is falling apart again.'

        The world felt a lot better when Kyle put his arms round me. 'Don't be fucking stupid, starboy. You can move in with me.'

        'What's your father going to say?'

        'I don't care.'

        'Kyle, he's your father.'

        'I'm a big boy now. He needs to get used to that.'

        'I am not going to start a fight between the two of you.'

        'I know you aren't. If he tries to stop you being with me, I'll start the fight. Your feelings are all scrambled. We both know that.'

        I could feel the tears coming again. I mumbled: 'How did this get so mixed-up?' Most people cry when they're hurt. These days I cry if anyone is nice to me.

        'Why its mixed-up doesn't matter. Max, you look like roadkill again. Bad time to start a fight with me. Come here...' The kiss was long and gentle.

        'Would you be better somewhere that doesn't remind you of Tess so much?'

        'I'd be better wherever you are.'

        'Sure about that?'

        'No. But we'll go to your place anyway. I think I can handle it for one night.'

        Kyle held me all night. We didn't talk. Even with Kyle next to me, even in his embrace, I couldn't get Tess out of my head - Tess living here, Tess killing Alex here, Tess raping Kyle's mind here, Tess making me think I loved her here. Kyle was silent but I don't think he slept much either. Hours crawled until I finally gave in and shut my eyes.

        Sleep was worse than being awake. I don't remember all the dreams (for once) but I know they weren't good. A dark, cold dream. Tess is there, laughing at me. 'You were a king, Max. Now you're just a boy.' I am running. Something is hunting me. I don't want to see the thing. Sometimes it sounds like Pierce. Sometimes it sounds like Tess. Somewhere I can hear a baby screaming. I have to find it, save it, but first I have to get away. Tess' voice, laughing again. 'Give up, Max. You can't stop me. I've got your mark.'

        A different voice. 'On your mark, starboy.' A race. A desert night. Kyle in pain. I have to heal him. He kisses me. Tess disappears, screaming. I'm hard. It feels really good. A feather touch of pleasure stirs inside me. Kyle's embrace is gone but his mouth is round my cock. I open my eyes.

        I reached for his silky hair to run my fingers through. He took me deeper in his throat. I felt alive, safe. Kyle's presence flooded into my fingers where they touched him and surged into my brain. He drummed his fingers across up my belly and then scored a fingernail across a nipple. Everywhere he touched felt like lightening.

        'Hey,

        'Well, the books say you can't keep two thoughts in your mind at the same time. I hoped I could help get the Tess stuff out of your head.'

        'It worked. You're amazing, Kyle.' We kissed.

        'So are you, Max. Go to sleep.' This time going to sleep was so fast it was like turning off a light. This time there were no bad dreams.

        Next morning, we woke up when he heard a car park in the driveway. The front door opened. Kyle put a finger to my lips and said: 'Shh... That'll be Dad. I don't want to see him before school.'

        'Why?'

        'I wanted the day to think through telling him you're moving in.'

        'Shouldn't you ask first?'

        Kyle shook his head,. The phone rang. We heard Jim answer. Then his footsteps sounded really loud as he came to Kyle's door. Jim called: 'Kyle, is Max in there with you?'

        'Possibly...'

        'What the hell does that mean?'

        I called out: 'I'm here, Jim.'

        'I'm coming in.'

        'Well we're not actually having sex right now, dad, if that's what's worrying you.'

        'Don't talk to me like that, Kyle.'

        The door banged open and Jim stamped into the room.

        Kyle said: 'Listen, dad. I love this guy. He's been through hell. I'm not going to stand by and watch anyone trash him again, not even you.'

        'What do you expect me to do? While I pay the bills I'm responsible for what goes on here.'

        'Sorry, dad. You aren't. You don't have a job. If I ask about it you just say you're in a dark place right now.'

        'Kyle...'

        'Listen, dad. Max is in a pretty dark place right now too. He doesn't have anywhere to live.'

        'Kyle...' I started.

        'Shut up, Max' Kyle's eyes had that cold blue glare again.

        'You want me to have 2 teenage boys sleeping together under my roof?'

        'If that's what it takes to keep Max going, yeah.'

        'I'm not happy, Kyle. This isn't over.'

        'Yes it is, dad. Max goes, so do I. Make a choice.'

        'Don't push me, Kyle.'

        'Give me a choice here, dad. You're fine if I'm with Max so long as we don't do anything? So long as Max doesn't sleep here? What the hell are you thinking?'

        I mumbled: 'Uh, Kyle, Jim, I don't want to cause any trouble.'

        Kyle snapped: 'You're not causing any trouble, Max. Stay out of this.'

        'No, Kyle. I can't.'

        'Yes, you can, starboy.'

        'Listen to Max, Kyle. I'm entitled to know what's going on in this house.'

        'We're boyfriends. Remember? It didn't worry you when I was sleeping with half the school.'

        Jim scowled and ran a hand through his hair. 'That was different.'

        'Why? Because they were girls? Is the back of my car okay, but not my bed?'

        'Max is under age. The Evanses just rang me. What do you want me to say?'

        'Dad, if you'll take on an alien invasion for Max you should be ready to take on some good old-fashioned prejudice for me.'

        'I won't talk to you when you're like this, son. It's not worth it.'

        'So Max stays?'

        'Yeah, Max stays.' Jim slammed the bedroom door on his way out.

        'Well...' Kyle muttered, 'that was exciting.'

        'Please don't get me into the middle of a war with your dad.'

        'No choice. No-one gets to trash you anymore, remember?'

        'What can I say?'

        'Don't say anything, starboy. It'll be okay.'

        'But...'

        'Max, I knew you're a train wreck when I fell for you.'

        I managed to smile. 'That's not a very nice thing to say...'

        'I like train wrecks. Well, we've got a couple of hours before school...'

Continue to Part Ten

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