Title: Tears for Fears.

Setting: Series One, post 'Red.'

Disclaimer: No I don't own Dark Angel, I just like write about

It didn't always rain in Seattle: some days it was positively peachy – or so Max thought as she entered the foyer of Logan's apartment building, Fogle Towers.

"I wonder what Logan's up to?" she wondered. "Probably sitting at his computer. Now, if I could just get him to lighten up a bit – he may even start enjoying life."

For an instant her mind ran off on a tangent, and conjured up several ways she'd 'like' to enjoy herself with Logan.

"Whoa," she suddenly thought, with a quick decisive shake of her head, "Don't even 'start' to go there Max. You and Logan aren't even like that!"

Why was it then, a small voice inside her asked, that try as she would, she couldn't forget the feel of his lips on hers in that one desperate kiss outside his Uncle's cabin? Why was it that the memory of it popped up in her other wise genetically organized mind with amazing regularity?

Even now, the thought of that bittersweet moment brought a small, pleased, secret smile to her eyes and a slight flush to her cheeks.

"Well, you look like the cat that swallowed the canary."

She'd been so lost in her thoughts that she hadn't realized the lift doors had opened. She brought her gaze back to the present, and was annoyed to find her heart rate had gone up a notch. Why did those green eyes behind the small glasses and that wide generous grin he had when he was really pleased, affect her that way?

She reflected quickly that it was hard to remain cool when the man you're fantasizing about suddenly appears in front of you.

"Hey," she managed to say.

"Hey to you too," he smiled back at her. Trying hard to remain focused, Max wondered why it had to be 'that' particular smile again.

Pushing through the lift doors, Logan stopped in front of her. "You all right – cause you seem a bit distracted?"

"No. I had a drop to do ... close by ... so ... I though I'd ... you know ... drop by." It was a casual, airy reply. Quite good under the circumstances she thought desperately.

She gave him her cheesy smile.

"Excuse me," a voice said close at hand.

Someone stepped between them and Logan wheeled back a little to let the man pass. "I was just heading down to the market to get a few things. You wanna come?"

Max gave him an appraising look. "Drivin' or wheelin'?" she asked.

Logan returned her look. "On a day like this? Wheeling ... definitely."

"Okay."

"I'll even buy you an ice cream."

"Triple choc?"

"Absolutely. Spare no expense!"

***************************************************

The sidewalks were always busy in post pulse Seattle - too few people owned cars.

As Max slowed her usual breakneck speed to match Logan, she found it hard to keep the smile off her face; when Logan was happy, you'd have to go a long way to find better company.

"You've got that look again." Logan looked up at her suspiciously.

Max breathed deeply. "You know, when it's sunny, the world really 'does' seem a nicer place."

Logan smiled at her again. He didn't even have to try too hard to bite back the barbed comment he could have made about vipers that brood in the shadows. No, they'd shared enough bleak moments together. Today, for a change, he'd let it rest. Bling would be proud of him.

"Now who's swallowed the canary?" taunted Max.

Logan grinned. "Mmmm, it tastes remarkably good, too."

They were almost to the entrance of the market by this time and the sidewalk became even more crowded. Here lived the teeming masses of post- pulse Seattle: the prostitutes, drug addicts, thieves, con men, murderers, and amongst all the dirt, the innocents - the ones Logan was so desperate to protect – trying to live their lives, feed their children, and all the while hold on to a dream that someday the world would be a better place.

An old lady, grey haired, withered, held out a plate to Logan as he went by. Max watched as Logan stopped and took out some money, but instead of putting it on the plate, he took her hand and pressed the money into her palm, and then closed her fingers around it to ensure it would not blow away.

"It's beautiful and sunny today Maude," he greeted her.

"Praise God!" she rasped back. "Another day of rain and I was going to turn Presbyterian!"

The cynic in Max told her that he was a sucker – a soft touch for a sad story. Perhaps he was. She thought back to when she'd found him staring fixedly at the tape of Nathan Herrero's daughter. "Will you help me?" the girl had begged. He hadn't been able to resist that plea.

Logan moved on, but they were jostled by another three beggars before they'd reached the market's entrance. This time Logan just tossed a couple of coins into each ones cup or cap.

"Do you give to all the beggars? I bet half of them are conmen!"

Logan acknowledged her words ruefully. "You're probably right, maybe even more than half are conmen, but if I stopped giving to all of them on that basis, the probably smaller percentage of people who are genuinely in desperate need, would miss out."

He stopped for a minute to let someone pass in front and then looking up at her he finished with a sincerity in his eyes that he couldn't hide, "Why let evil triumph all the time? I have the means to give a little to many. Maybe at least one child sleeps easier at night with a little more food in their stomach because of my few dollars."

"Logan Cale, you are one of a dying breed."

Logan shrugged a little self- consciously at her words, and continued to push through the crowds. There had been a warmth in her words – he had an idea that was her idea of a compliment. Yes, there was a lot to be said for a sunny day.

Just at that moment, yet another man approached Logan with the ubiquitous cup in hand. Max watched, a little bored to see their progress halted yet again. Did Logan have to give to all of them?

Suddenly, something in the man's demeanor made Max's 'early warning signals' start to sound.

The man was quite tall, and looked to be well built beneath his shabby clothes. A baseball hat was pushed down low ever his eyes. His clothes were dirty and ragged, but it was his shoes that caught Max's attention. How many beggars wore hand made Italian loafers?

Logan obviously wasn't too interested in the man. He'd simply grabbed a handful of coins from his pocket and tossed them casually in the man's cup. Max saw the man look at the coins, and then he took another step closer to Logan

Max felt a fury erupt inside her. Her hand shot out and grabbed the "beggars" arm in a vice-like grip. With her own face inches from his pained and startled expression, she hissed, "You go near him and you're a dead man!"

The beggar took one look at that beautiful face filled with deadly intent and immediately quavered, "Hey, I didn't mean anything lady. A man's just trying to make a livin'."

"Yeah. Well do it somewhere else!"

The man slunk off without so much as a backward glance.

Max was surprised to find she was tense – taut as though prepared for battle. With a long breath she forced herself to relax.

Logan had bemusedly watched the whole exchange, and couldn't decide now whether to be annoyed, amused or angry. "Just what was that all about?'

Max looked at Logan.

How could she explain to Logan the inescapable sense of dread that had swept over her as she saw the man step towards Logan? She didn't even understand it herself; all she knew was that she had to protect him. So strong had the sensation been, that now she felt drained, not unlike the aftermath of one of her seizures. Damn – she couldn't tell Logan this.

"Are you all right Max?" she heard him asking, with a hint of anxiety in his voice.

"Do you know that man Logan? Have you seen him before?"

Surprised by the intensity of her look, and the grim tone of her voice, Logan replied, "I don't think I've ever seen him before ... Max, what is it?"

Max scanned their immediate vicinity. Of the man there was no sight, but where had her carefree, sunny day gone? The sun still shone in the sky, but all she could see were the shadows and she wondered what dangers to Logan lurked there? Damn, he was too vulnerable in the chair. A cold, icy hand seemed to grip her heart as she remembered how easy it had been for Gerhardt Bronck's men to capture him.

"Max." Logan was beginning to sound annoyed.

"Let's go home," she replied quickly.

"We haven't even done my shopping." Logan was definitely sounding annoyed now.

"Okay, okay," she tried to placate him. "Let's do it then. What do you need?"

Logan, for his part, was disappointed to say the least, in her sudden change of attitude. It felt as though the sky had clouded over for him as well.

Full of conflicting emotions, and with a grim face, he purchased the few things he needed, and headed back to the apartment.

Max felt a stab of guilt as she stole a look at his profile. It all seemed so silly now. How had she come to overreact like that and ruin what had been a perfect day?

By this time they were back at Fogle Towers and Logan held his hand out for the bag of vegetables she'd been carrying.

With a mere flick of a glance in her direction he said, "Well, I'll see ya." She was being dismissed.

Instead, Max held them just out of his reach, and with her most disarming smile said coyly, "Peace offering?"

With his head to one side, Logan regarded her appraisingly. He could feel some of his anger towards her start to melt away. It was hard to resist that look.

"Well, seeing as how I gotta rush back to work an all," (which wasn't quite the truth, but she had absolutely no intention of admitting her fears), "and the weather's meant to stay nice until tomorrow night, how's about a picnic tomorrow lunchtime, in the park?"

Logan still had no idea what had bothered her, but it was obvious that she was keen to 'make up.' This was a nice change.

He let a slow smile spread across his face. "Okay." This time she held the bag closer. Reaching out he took it, and placed it on his knees.

"I'll give you a buzz tomorrow when I can get away."

"Sure."

"See ya."

Grabbing her bike from where she'd left it, she rode off.

Logan watched her disappear into the crowds – just the hint of a smile lingering on his lips.

*******************************************************

The rest of the day passed slowly for Max. She felt a restlessness in herself that she couldn't put a finger on. She knew she wasn't in heat, yet somehow she felt like a cat on the prowl, with her senses heightened for danger.

She thought she'd shaken off her worries of lunchtime, but try as she would, the image of the beggar approaching Logan, and that same gut- wrenching desire to protect him, was replayed in her mind, time and time again.

She could tell that Original Cindy was trying to figure what was up, so rather than face her, she took off at the end of the day with a "Gotta fly."

"You hangin' out at Crash tonight, Boo?" had been Original Cindy's parting words.

"Nah, got a thing to do."

"Hangin' out with your squeeze?" she asked knowingly.

Max just gave her a look, and sped off. Original Cindy was nothing if not persistent.

Riding home in the last rays of the sun, she stopped off only to change into her black catsuit, and grab her Ninja, then headed purposefully in the direction of Logan's apartment building.

However, instead of waltzing up to Logan's penthouse, she took up a position across the road from the building. It was dark by now, and the bushes on the outskirt of the park provided her with cover and an uninterrupted view of the front doors of the building.

The evening was clear, but cold. More than once she asked herself: "Max, what the hell are you doing?" Annoyingly, at the thought of leaving, the restlessness returned, and she knew she had to stay.

Max looked up to where the penthouse was. She wondered what Logan was doing. She felt glad that they'd parted on good terms. He had enough dramas in his life, without her being a drama queen as well. With a rueful grin she thought of Zack, and what he would say if he could see her now.

A familiar rumbling in her stomach told her that it was well past dinnertime. 'Dinner time' – the word conjured up past images of evenings spent with Logan. She sighed. "You're so whacked girl - this is crazy."

Around nine pm she saw Bling leaving the building and Max smiled inwardly, wondering what his day had been like. Was Logan a good boy for you, or cranky and impatient, doing the spoilt rich kid routine?

She had to admire Bling's patience. It was more than patience she mused – the man had a wonderful empathy for Logan, and probably put up with a lot more crap from him than even she knew about, while at the same time he walked a fine line in refusing to let Logan wallow in self-pity.

Bling's understanding sometimes left her feeling inadequate. She could kick the ass of the strongest man in town, and hardly raise a sweat doing it, but she struggled to understand the demons that confronted Logan. Not that Logan helped any – Mr. Eyes Only, I can do everything by myself, and never show any sign of human weakness! What a frustrating, maddening, fascinating ...

Just then, a movement caught her eye. A man was crossing the road directly opposite the entrance to Fogle Towers. To Max, with her extraordinary eyesight, he was easily discernible - right down to his Italian loafers.

There was that feeling again, but this time she clamped down on her emotions, and concentrated solely on the job at hand. She saw her quarry glance furtively about, then head to the entrance foyer. It was hardly a coincidence that he appeared almost immediately Bling had left.

Max waited until he'd entered, then slipped across herself and followed him inside. By the time she'd entered, he was already coming out of the bottom lift.

"Lost your security pass?" she enquired sweetly. "Or maybe this is just a little up-market for you?"

The 'beggar' stood in the dim light of the foyer, looking at her. Gone now was the baseball cap and dirty clothing. Instead he was now dressed in a quality suit, and smelt of expensive cologne. Gone also was the scared look and wheedling tone of lunchtime. He didn't appear at all disconcerted to be found at the lift door.

"I beg your pardon?" he asked in a cultured tone. "Have we met?"

Max studied him for a long moment. The voice and clothes were different, but the feeling of revulsion that swept over her was the same. It was the eyes that gave him away. Logan had green eyes, but his were a deep green, sometimes almost blue in a certain light. She had rarely seen eyes like this man's – they were an unusual pale green, but more than that was the complete lack of warmth to be found in their depths. Here was a ruthless, calculating man.

As she was about to reply, the entrance door opened again, and two couples walked in together, one of them with a small dog on a lead. For some reason, and she wondered later if it was her feline DNA, the dog took immediate exception to her, and rushed at her, barking furiously. Max stepped back out of instinct, not fear as it bared its teeth at her. In that split second, the intruder dashed in the opposite direction, and out the side door of the building.

Cursing the stupidity of the dog, and herself, she dove after him, only to be stopped short by a car whizzing along the road in front of her at high speed. Of the 'beggar' there was no sign.

"Great!" she muttered darkly.

*********************************************************

"Logan. You still up?" Max called as she wandered in.

She loved the ambience of his penthouse at night, the discreet lighting reflected in the polished floorboards, and there was usually the alluring aroma of a Cale masterpiece from the kitchen.

Logan came round the corner from his computer.

"Is it too late for a visit?" smiled Max. 'He looks pleased to see me,' she thought.

"Whatcha been doin'?" she asked.

"Oh you know, nothing important, just trying to save the world."

He wheeled back to his computer as he spoke, and, a little too innocently, or so Max thought, stuffed some letters that had been sitting on the desk, into the drawer.

"So," he said, swinging back around to her, "I thought you were busy tonight."

Did he sound a little suspicious? Sometimes he could put an edge to his words that made them sound like an interrogation.

Max shrugged and walked through to the living room. "I was just cruising ... landed here," she finished almost seductively.

She looked at Logan to see the effect of her words. He seemed happy enough. Mmm, he smelled good too, even if there was no dinner. He looked like he was straight from the shower. She noticed that his feet were bare.

'You'll get cold toeys."

He looked down at his feet and shrugged, then looking back at her asked, "You had dinner? I've got some leftovers in the fridge."

"Thought you'd never ask," she grinned.

Max studied his retreating back for a moment, trying to gauge his mood, as Logan turned and headed for the kitchen. Sometimes he could be very hard to read. She hoped that the offer of the picnic had extinguished his earlier irritation with her. Just how was she going to get an invite to stay the night without raising his suspicions?

She had no intention of leaving him in the penthouse, alone at night, with 'snake eyes' out and about.

For the hundredth time she asked herself who was he, and why was he lurking around Logan. More importantly, why did he creep her out so much? At Manticore they were trained to react to facts, not feelings. Once again she could imagine Zack's disgust with her if he knew.

"Max, you want some pasta?"

Snapping out of her reverie, she sauntered into the kitchen.

Logan had put out a plate of spaghetti bolognaise for her and next to it was a bowl of salad.

"Did you make two serves, or didn't you eat?" she asked him suspiciously.

"I didn't feel like it – I ate something else."

Deftly changing the subject he asked, "Would you like some wine with it?"

With a raised eyebrow she noted how he rubbed the back of his head as he spoke – a sure sign he was dissembling, but she let it go, wondering how many meals he missed when he was obsessed with an Eyes Only cause.

"Only if you've got something open. Just a small glass will do." She wanted to ensure she had a clear head for the evening.

"I'm pretty sure I can find something."

This time he smiled at her with his genuine smile. Max was relieved. So far so good - walking on eggshells was not her favorite occupation.

Logan set Max up on the dining table, then disappeared into his bedroom, saying he had a few things to do.

Max ate her dinner slowly, her mind going over the day's events. Should she mention the man downstairs to Logan? She suspected that if she did, he would send her packing, his male ego offended by the idea of her as a bodyguard. She certainly didn't thrill to the idea of standing watch outside as she had done earlier, when she could be inside with him. 'Men' – you had to tread delicately where their male egos were concerned.

When Logan came back she noticed he'd put on some socks, and a sweater over his T-shirt.

Seeing him in bare feet had been a stark reminder of the lack of mobility in his lower body. It was odd to see feet so still.

With a sudden stab of intense anger she thought of Bruno Anselmo. Dirt bag! A very dead dirt bag she reflected with satisfaction.

"I hope that's not me you're thinking of," Logan's voice cut into her thoughts.

Not realizing she'd been so transparent, she briefly wondered if she should admit it was Bruno she'd been thinking of. It might lead to awkward questions, and Logan's mood changes were legendary if you inadvertently said the wrong thing.

"Just a creep I came across today at work – No big dealio."

"You looked like you'd like to hang, draw and quarter him; not necessarily in that order," he commented quizzically.

'Nah. This turkey got what he deserved."

'Did he?' she wondered to herself as she looked at Logan sitting in his wheelchair. 'Perhaps a bullet in the heart had been too quick and easy for him.'

"Anyway," she turned to him enticingly, hoping to lighten her mood, "Do you feel up to another crushing defeat at chess?"

"Pride goeth before a fall!" he quoted at her, wheeling himself effortlessly into the living area where they played.

***********************************************************

"Are you a glutton for punishment, or have you had enough?"

It was four games to 1 – Max's way of course, and Logan was frankly pleased to have won one game.

Stifling a yawn, Logan asked "Are you up for another?"

"I hate to see a grown man cry. Is it late?"

Logan looked at his watch.

"That depends on how you look at it. It's either very late, or very early."

"Mind if I crash here in the guest room? I don't fancy putting up with the sector police tonight."

"Sure."

Max breathed an inward sigh of relief, glad it had been so easy.

"Are you going to bed now?" she asked.

Logan motioned towards his computer. "I've still got a little work to do."

She refrained from telling him that he looked tired, and surely it could wait until morning.

"Okay. Night."

"Goodnight." He smiled back, but as she walked away she saw him take off his glasses and rub his eyes.

Just what case was he obsessing about now, and why hadn't he told her?

It was quite some time later before she heard him go to bed.

Max, who rarely slept, had no intention of sleeping this night.

Quietly she walked out to the living room, and sat by the window.

She would never admit it to Kendra or Original Cindy, but there was only one person who had the ability to dominate her thoughts.

TBC