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Subject 101, Part One

Reply to Shelly and Sherri

Posted to the Roswell Slash list October 11, 2000

TITLE: Subject 101
AUTHOR: Shelly and Sherri
DISCLAIMER: Roswell characters don't belong to us; any other characters do... FEEDBACK: thrive on it, makes us write more...LOL
AUTHORS NOTE: This is an Alternate Universe story so we're basically making up our history as it goes along. ALSO this story will feature GRAPHIC m/m sex, with a few non-consensual scenes thrown in. If you don't like that kind of stuff, then please don't read it. Chapters that contain graphic sex will be rated NC17.

Sitting behind the wheel of his Mustang and waiting for the light to change, Jack Dixon yawned and ran a hand through short cropped blond hair, blinking gritty eyes to clear blurred vision as he drummed the fingers of one hand restlessly on the steering wheel. God, he hoped he would be able to sleep better tonight than he had last night, that his body would *finally* be adjusted to the idea of living in new digs and let him get a full night's sleep for a change. He'd lain awake most of last night, listening to the shifting of the old house around him. Always had been like this, even as a kid, and it surely hadn't helped that today had been his first day in his new position.

Detective...he still marveled at that, that when they'd accepted his application here in Cornwall, they'd also bump him up to detective. Had to have been his old lieutenant that had pulled some strings and he could have kissed Torres for that. He'd been detective back in San Francisco for maybe six months before he'd come out here, to settle up the estate of his mother. Hadn't really planned on staying here but there was the house that his mother had left him and he'd found himself suddenly taken with the idea of coming back home, for the first time in twelve years.

Odd how he couldn't wait to get out from under the old roof, had taken off soon as he could, with the ink on his high school diploma barely dry, and yet here he was, back home again. Of course he'd been even more surprised, that his mother had chosen to leave the house to him, when the two of them hadn't spoken much over the last few years. Hadn't even known she was sick, till he'd gotten the phone call telling him she'd died. Guilt had of course been his first reaction...and a kind of sorrow, that he'd never taken the effort to mend things between them before she died. Hadn't exactly been a perfect kind of family, even when Dad had been alive, and after his death, the rift between him and his mother had widened.

It had been an old struggle between them, Mom wanting better for him than she had, wanting to plan out his life for him. Wanted him to be a lawyer or a doctor when he just didn't have the ambition or desire to be either. And when nothing he'd said could dissuade her, he'd done the next best thing: he'd up and left soon as he graduated from high school, with the money he'd saved up working part time at a local fast food joint. Heading out with three of his buddies for California, with no real idea of what he wanted to do when he got there, knowing he only wanted to put as much distance between himself and his mother as he could.

Becoming a cop had just seemed...right. He'd grown up on shows like Starsky and Hutch and Hill Street Blues, never quite outgrowing that boyhood fascination in a career of law enforcement. Had spent seven years working patrol and would have been content to remain there, hadn't he received the nudge from his sergeant to take the test for a detective's shield. And the rest, as they say, was history...

Which brought him to the here and now...

The city he'd grown up in had changed *a lot* since he'd been gone. Bigger, noisier, and more crowded than he remembered it being. The Heights had been a little suburb when he'd been growing up but now the houses were nearly outnumbered by condos and apartment buildings, the city swallowing greedily the fields and forest he'd played in as a kid and spitting out fast food restaurants and a strip mall. Progress, he thought glumly as he waited for the light to change. You either kept pace with it or it ground you under its wheels.

The precinct he'd been assigned to was the 12th, out of Washington Square, easily the worst part of town. Once it had been the hub of Cornwall but with the construction of new freeways and overpasses, the businesses had slowly phased out, drawn by the lure of cheaper leases offered them by burgeoning developers, all but abandoning the Square. It had fallen slowly into decay, the once luxurious brownstones becoming gray rundown tenements, the trendy boutiques and coffee houses turning into liquor stores and strip joints. What had once been home to the nouveau rich and blue bloods was now the haven of the lost souls and those struggling to keep heads above water, living off minimum wage and food stamps.

And a really nice place for a rookie detective to get his feet wet, reflected Jack ruefully. Of course, he couldn't complain, he should be glad that they'd taken him on as a detective, rather than put him in an uniform again and send him out onto the streets.

The light changed from red to green and Jack shifted foot from brake pedal to gas pedal, giving it a little too much of a push to accelerate it. Twelve hours of work and he was looking forward to going home, even if it was to an empty house. A couple beers in him and that should help him to sleep...

Didn't see the kid, till the headlights hit him and the kid turned his head a little, frozen like a deer in the bright glare, and Jack stomped hard on the brake, not even thinking about whether or not there might be somebody right on his tail, his heart crawling up in his throat as he heard the ominous, sickening sound of his car striking a body. The kid disappearing, God, please, he didn't go *over* him, he would have felt it, and he jabbed at the emergency brake as he fumbled out of the seat belt, shoving the door open. Stumbled out of the car, with the taste of bile at the back of his throat, and made his way slowly around the car, dreading what he would find.

The kid lay on his side, back to him, and Jack knelt beside him, grasping one shoulder to roll him onto his back. Could see lurid red on his cheek but it was too dark to see much else. He ran a hand over the kid's torso, feeling for any injuries, and the kid let out a little moan, shifting under his hand but not awaking. Raising his head Jack looked wildly around him and his eyes focused on a neon red sign that said Fleet Street Clinic, just at the end of the block.

He slid an arm under the kid's knees and the other around his shoulders to lift him, back muscles tightening in anticipation of the kid's weight, but for all the length of his body the kid was surprisingly light and Jack took a moment to settle him a little more comfortably in his arms before he started for the clinic.

It was awkward to get the door open but he managed it, shoving the door open with one foot as he carried the kid inside. The waiting room was half full, a few of those in the chairs curious enough to spare him a glance, and the receptionist--a weary looking girl with jet black hair and pale skin, a light blue lab coat worn over hot pink baby doll tee and black jeans, raised a hand as he approached, her attention captured by the phone she held to her ear.

"Be with you in a second."

Jack gave the base of the counter before him a kick and the girl shot him an annoyed glance, the irritation not fading a little to see the limp figure he held in his arms. "I need some help here!" he said angrily. The girl bristled, parting lips to speak, but in that moment a bespectacled blond came into the waiting room, a manilla folder held in one hand, lifting her head to scan the waiting room.

Jack moved directly into her path, hoisting up the kid's limp body, starting to feel the strain a little now. "Can you help me?" he demanded.

The woman nodded briskly and spun to head back to the exam rooms, motioning for him to follow her. Third door on the right and she pushed it open, holding it to let Jack come inside with his burden. Without being told, Jack laid the kid out on the exam table, sighing in relief, and grimaced as he got a good look at the kid. Nasty scrape on the cheek and a cut high on his forehead that sent a thin stream of blood down his cheek but the dark bruising around one eye obviously hadn't come from the collision. One glance over the kid's lean form told his story even plainer than words; street kid, from the oversized jacket and loose fitting clothes, down to the sneakers held together with silver and black tape, the soles coming loose at the heels.

Under Jack's assessing gaze, the kid opened his eyes to look dully up at him, brown eyes with a hint of gold to them, eyes that were far too old and tired for someone so young. Even under the bruises and scrapes and dirt, with longish ebony hair tangled and matted, he was oddly...beautiful, was the word that came to mind, a word that Jack wouldn't have associated with a boy but seemed to fit this one.

"I'm Dr. Grey. People around here call me Dr. Maggie." said the woman as she pulled on a pair of disposable gloves before going to the exam table, to run her eyes appraisingly over the boy laid out on her table. Pretty features set into a calm professional mask softened a little as she reached up to brush ebony hair back from the boy's eyes. "Hey, Max..." she said in greeting, letting her hand linger on his forehead, the boy's eyes closing under her touch. "What happened?" she tossed over her shoulder to Jack.

"He...he walked right out in front of the car. Didn't even see him, till I hit him. I don't think I hit him hard..." said Jack in a rush, tugging a hand through his hair.

As he spoke, Maggie probed gently but firmly at chest and then abdomen, watching her patient for signs of pain. "Hurt anywhere, Max?" she asked the boy, receiving only a slight shake of his head in response. Sighing, Maggie peeled back white T-shirt gone gray and Jack caught a glimpse of livid bruising along his ribs before she smoothed T-shirt back into place. "Anything broken, you'd tell me, right, Max?" No response from the boy and she shook her head as she cleaned the scrape on his cheek and then the cut on his forehead, applying a small bandage to his forehead.

Once done she stepped back and the kid Max levered himself slowly up to a sitting position, swinging long legs over the side so that they dangled from it, trying not to be too obvious about it when he pressed an arm to his ribs. Maggie touched fingers to the bruised skin around his right eye and he winced back from her touch. "Didn't get that when he clipped you back there, did you, Max? Lay back down. I'm not done with you yet."

Ignoring the order, Max slid down the table to place feet on the floor, weaving a little as he stood and then gaining his balance. Eyes averted, he moved past Jack, his gait still unsteady as he made his way to the door, as if he was indeed hurting, and Jack moved to stop him but Maggie caught his arm in a surprisingly strong grip, shaking her head when he shot her a questioning frown.

"Let him go." she said, stripping off the gloves to toss them in a nearby can with another sigh.

"You know him?" asked Jack, jerking his thumb in the direction that the kid had gone.

Maggie gave him a weary smile. "As much as anyone can, I guess. Don't see him in here very often, though. He doesn't seem to like doctors much." Her gaze on him sharpened, eyes narrowing. "Never did get your name. Or the full story on this."

"Ohh...I'm Jack. Jack Dixon." Shaking his head at himself, Jack slipped a hand into the inner breast pocket of his leather jacket and removed his wallet, flipping it open to show her his badge.

"Cop, huh? Always go around hitting poor street kids with your car?" she asked mildly. When Jack flushed and parted lips to offer a retort she waved him to silence. "I've got work to do. You did your good deed, you brought him in, now you can go home." She gave a little wave of her hand to dismiss him as she headed for the door.

"That kid...Max? He's going to be okay...right?" called Jack, moving to follow her.

Maggie lifted a shoulder in a shrug. "Okay? He lives in an abandoned building with no heat and electricity, sells himself to whoever's willing to pay so he and his friends can eat. Is he going to be okay?" Jack flushed again at the caustic note to her voice as she shook her head. "No. He's not going to be okay." And with that she left him alone in the examining room.

End of part 1

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