I didnĂ­t even know his name

Title: In Its Right Place

Author: Haywire

Category: Max/Logan, post ep Kidz. Lots of Angst.

Disclaimer: Not mine. I think if they were I might destroy them completely.

Dedication: for Sadia, who makes it my aim to entertain. Thanks also to everybody who responded to On Monday', especially Rachel for thoughts of a Logan clone J

*****

I didn't even know his name. He had dark hair, tough, and smelled like black coffee and alcohol. Jason, maybe. Or Justin. Whatever.

I didn't go in to drown my sorrows. Unlike the many other victims of broken relationships hunched over the bar with sweating drinks in their hands and minds as murky as the glasses they drank from, I was beyond self-pity. I stalked in and flaunted my body shamelessly; well aware that all eyes were on me like I was a piece of meat, stripping me naked. I was aware. It was what I had come for.

Black coffee boy had his hands on me early in the night. He had sidled up suggestively and asked the bartender to get me a drink.

"What's your name, beautiful?" he said.

Admittedly, I was pissed. I grabbed his jacket and pulled him toward me with more force than I had intended. He didn't seem the least bit annoyed by the way our bodies bumped violently. He smiled, surprised.

"What do you want from me." I growled. I hadn't meant to.

"Your name, for one." He said, prying my fingers from his jacket.

I didn't care if he was the scum of the earth. I didn't care if he was Satan's advocate or a sector policeman or if he had some grossly disfiguring body anomaly. In fact, I almost hoped he did. I did, anyway.

"Good enough," I said.

I dragged him back to my place; the thought of being confronted by male territory was vaguely sickening. Cindy would come in way later, and hopefully I'd be finished with him by then. I didn't bother turning on the lights as I slammed the door shut because even with my night vision I wanted to see as little as him as possible. So I squeezed my eyes shut, and it made it easier. Easier to push off his jacket and pull his face down to mine. Easier to kiss lips that weren't Logan's.

The kiss was brutal. I forced myself to savagely press myself against him and think of nothing but the punishing sensation. Our lips bruised against one another and my nails were sure to draw blood on the soft skin at the back of his neck. I bit down hard on his lower lip as his hands roamed possessively. I would have felt violated, had this not been my intent. My idea of a mental vomit.

The concept of disappointment being linked to failure had been ingrained in me from the time I was born. It was something I was taught once, then relearned over and over again. Don't be the first one to come up for air. Don't stop even when you're going to collapse. Don't cry out when they strap you down, cut your skin. Don't be the failure. I failed Zack when I wasn't the perfect little soldier and didn't move on as I was supposed to. When he gave me the choice and I said no. I could hear the disappointment in his voice. And as he drove off all I could feel was that I'd been let down. Disappointed, just as much as he was of me. I didn't stay because of defiance. I stayed because there was someone who had never disappointed me before.

I shouldn't have been so quick to hold my tongue.

Suddenly the kiss was broken as he pulled back and my eyes were forced to open. I was forced to look straight into his face and he was no longer the scent of coffee, a pair of lips, a pair of hands. He was a pair of eyes that probed uncomfortably deep into mine.

"Hey, are you okay?" There was concern in his voice and I started. I was gripping his bicep and when I let go I faltered. He moved to steady me and I brushed him away.

"Are you okay?" There was fear now, too. I was shaking like crazy.

Somehow I managed to drag myself to the bathroom and shut the door behind me. I knew it wasn't a seizure but reached into the cupboard reflexively, downing the pills anyway. I leaned heavily against the sink, willing the convulsions to stop. They didn't, and I slid to the floor.

I had pushed. I had pushed and pulled at him to make it go away. I had pushed and pushed at my brain with all my strength but Logan wouldn't leave. At Manticore we were taught to forget, to completely expel our minds of anything we wanted to. I remember Lydecker's words with a wry smile, "Anything can be erased. But you have to want to," the only time he ever gave us the power to control something based on our desire to do it. The evident truth lay before me and I tentatively reached out to accept it. I don't want him to leave me.

I leaned against the door and heard only quiet on the other side and I was thankful that he had the decency to leave. The steady thrum of rain on the window pulsed a comforting heartbeat. Once upon a time I came to Seattle because of the rain, because of the permanent gloom to match my angst-ridden mood. And now I can't leave because there is someone I won't stand to have disappoint me.

His place was dark and quiet but his bedroom was empty. Furrowing my eyebrows I followed the hum of machinery into his computer room which was unexpectedly enclosed in shadows. Panic hit, but I found him asleep on the couch in the living room, still fully clothed; a marble statue in the filtered light of the moon through the window. A book lay half-open on his chest and rose and fell gently with each breath he took, the only evidence he was alive. I smiled and gently removed the book from his hand. It was pre-pulse, and bound in leather. It was called "Goddesses of Greek Mythology". A slight flutter of eyelashes caught my eyes and I looked down at the reason I was here and not with the others like me. A fallible man with the belief that he can crush the world's demons with his beautiful mind, who never fails to see beyond the surface layer and aim his sights well above the horizon. A man who keeps me tied to this mess and tied to him. A man who is forced to remain glued to the surface and be a confined mere mortal by day and only at night, in his dreams, become larger than life.

"What do you dream of?" I whisper, less to him and more to the night that clings heavily around us.

I do not notice he is awake until his lips part and his voice reaches me.

"I dream of you, Max. Always you."