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Only the Lonely

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Added to the Roswell Slash Archive January 2, 2001

Title: Only the Lonely
Author: Luv
Feedback: Yes, please
Distribution: You want it? Just ask and you shall receive.
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Isn't that sad?



        I call the familiar phone number expecting to hear her voice on the other end when it suddenly dawns on me that she won't be there. Isabel moved out today. She lives with her husband now and I must stop thinking about her.

        I don't hang up. I just listen as the phone rings and rings. No one is home. That surprises me. To call my house and not get an answer is expected. I never know where my dad is and I try to spend as few hours as possible in Tess Harding's ex-place of residence. But to call the Evans house and not get an answer unnerves me. I wonder where Mrs. Evans can be. Is she eating dinner at Isabel and Jesse's new apartment? Or did she and Isabel go shopping for linens or silverware or lord help me baby carriages. I don't even want to think of where Mr. Evans might be or on whom he might be spying today.

        I still haven't hung up the phone. It sits like a dead weight in my hand. I am listening to the repetition of the signal with such serious thought that I hardly notice when a voice answers.

        "Hello?" A curious male voice murmurs.

        It's Max.

        He's breathing heavily into the phone. In my mind I see an image of him sprinting from his room to the kitchen, hands full of books and clothes that he is taking back with him to Michael's apartment. His chest is heaving, his palms are sweaty, - and I hang up immediately.

        I don't want to talk to Max. I called Isabel.

        I'm still holding the cordless phone when it shrills a moment later. I don't expect it to ring and I visibly jump. I look around self-consciously in embarrassment but there is nobody here to snicker. There rarely are these days.

        "What?" I say. I rarely ever say hello or hi or hey anymore.

        There is a pause before the caller responds.

        "Kyle?"

        I knew his voice immediately. He doesn't know mine.

        "Yeah."

        "Did you just call and hang up?"

        I nod yes, but then realize I'm on the phone and he can't see me shaking my head.

        "I meant to call Maria, but when you answered I realized I dialed the wrong number. Sorry." I say fast.

        "Oh, okay." He replies. He isn't breathing heavily anymore. He caught his breath. I am always trying to catch mine. I never do.

        I want to hang up. I did it so easily before. I hesitate. I feel his name straining to be released from my voice box.

        For once Max notices someone other than himself and questions me on my silence.

        "Are you alright?" He asks.

        I want to be snippy. I want to tell him I haven't been alright since the day I was shot and he saved my life. Instead I mumble.

        "Tell Isabel I miss her."

        I push the off button and throw the phone across the room.

        I need to relax. I walk into the bathroom and turn on the shower as hot as it can be. I want the water to burn my body. The showerhead is broken and water sprays my clothes. I don't flinch even though it stings. It reminds me I'm alive.

        I pull off my socks and work shirt. I fumble with my pants. Despite the warmth the hot shower is providing my fingers feel numb. I finally get the buttons undone and the pants drop to the floor. I cringe as I see which boxers I chose to wear this morning.

        "Calvin Klein. I approve."

        She's never going to leave me alone, is she?

        I quickly pull my pants back up. I turn the shower off. I don't want to get in trouble for flooding the house.

        I need music. Loud music. You know, the kind with plenty of screaming and rocking drums and ear shattering bass.

        The doorbell rings.

        I really don't want to talk to anyone but I don't want to seem rude. I hope it is Maria or Liz. Buddha, please don't let it be Isabel coming to cry on my shoulder.

        It's not Isabel. It's not Maria or Liz. It's not my Dad.

        "Hi Max."

        Why am I being so polite? I don't want him here. Tell him to go. Tell him to go Kyle.

        "Can I come in?"

        Say no.

        "Okay."

        He pushes past me. He gives me a questioning look.

        "You're wet?"

        I feel self conscious under his glare. His look travels from my wet wife beater down to my bare feet.

        "The shower broke."

        "Okay." Max says. He thinks the comment is funny. His mouth is twitching now just the way it does before he starts to laugh. "Look Kyle. I came over for a reason." He says in a direct voice. He pauses before he continues.

        "Are you in love with - "

        I don't hear his last word because I bolt from the room the moment he says love. I don't want to talk with him about love. I just want to listen to my music in peace. I start rummaging through my CDs. I find the one I want to hear, and look up to find him standing in the doorway.

        "So its true."

        Max has this semi-smug look on his face. He thinks he knows everything. Now I understand why Michael fights with him so often.

        "NO." I growl. I don't want him here, I don't want him asking me questions and now I'm angry.

        He's surprised to say the least. He must not think I have enough guts to express my emotions to him. He's wrong. Max doesn't say anything but I think he's actually hurt by my tone. He has those eyes that just scream: "how can you be mad at me I'm an innocent little puppy dog."

        I don't want to apologize. I have nothing to apologize for.

        "I didn't mean to yell. Sorry." I say. I cast my eyes downward.

        "What's going on with you?" Max asks.

        I jump. He's moved from the doorway. I feel his breathe on the back of my neck. He does that a lot I've noticed. He invades your personal space as if it's his for the taking.

        "I'm really not in the mood to talk." I answer as I take a few steps forward and turn around to face him.

        "Did you call the house to talk to Isabel?" Apparently, not in the mood to talk isn't in Max's vocabulary.

        "Max, stop."

        "It's just a simple question Kyle."

        "Fine!" I yell.

        The puppy dog eyes are back but I pretend not to see them.

        "I'm not in love with Isabel. She's my best friend and now that she's married I barely see her anymore. I don't like being alone."

        "You have other friends." He says. Max really think he can fix this. Isabel doesn't call him the deluded healer for nothing. I'm all for him waving his perfectly manicured alien hand and fixing this like he did the gunshot in my belly. Somehow I don't see that happening though, some things are just meant to stay broken Maxi boy.

        "Do I?"

        I am challenging the King. Max really doesn't like that. His cheeks and neck have blushed a deep red. I stifle a laugh.

        "Do the guys on the football team talk to me anymore? No. They don't understand why I'm not the Kyle I was two years ago and I've given up trying to explain."

        "That's my fault, isn't it?" He asks.

        "Yeah, mostly." I answer.

        He's going to apologize but I cut him off. I don't want to hear his "I'm sorry Kyle but I did it to save Liz" speech. I've heard that one too many times.

        "Do you know how royally you screwed up my life?"

        At this moment I want him to know how badly I've suffered by knowing him.

        Max brought Tess into my life and then took her away.

        Max's secret killed Alex.

        Max got my Dad fired.

        Max has Liz.

        I have nobody.

        "I do know."

        So clueless Max wasn't as clueless as I thought.

        "Do you feel bad at all?"

        Wow that sounds much more pathetic out loud than it did in my head.

        "You have no idea how much."

        "Then why did you do it? Why take her away from me too? You had Liz." I was whining, but I really didn't care.

        "What?"

        "Forget it." Max is so blind. I really regret saying anything now. Note to self, forget about heart to heart conversations and stick to cracking jokes.

        "I don't know." He says.

        I blink. He doesn't know? That's not good enough.

        "Get out."

        He isn't moving. He's just standing there. I'm sick of him never listening to me.

        "Did you hear me Evans? I said, get out."

        "I knew that being with Tess would hurt you."

        Max said it so softly I wasn't sure he had spoken at first.

        "It was petty," He continued. "I thought you slept with Liz. I wanted you to suffer like I did."

        "You succeeded. Congratulations."

        He crosses the room in two strides. Great, he's back to invading my space. He puts his hands on my biceps.

        "I regret it Kyle. I'd take it back if I could."

        I'm not sure I believe him but does it matter? We all forgive him eventually. He's Max.

        It's Rule #1 in the "I know an alien" handbook.

        His hands are still on my biceps. He has me in a holding position. My body is flushed from his touch.

        He's surprised but doesn't pull away when I kiss him. It doesn't last long and I didn't expect it to. That small taste will last me a lifetime.

        "Stay away from me Kyle. I end up hurting the people I..."

        His voice trails off. He's gone but I don't have to wonder what that unspoken word is. I already know.

        I love you too Max.

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