First attempt at an Ally McBeal fic so might be wildly off, sorry if it is, anyway, seen it all and was rewatching it after years and watched the episode where Ally and Larry have there first date and reminded me of how amazing they were and how much I loved that 'ship and got inspired to write this, haven't watched it all through again yet and haven't seen it for a while, apologies for any innacurcies, but anyway, will start the story now. Set after the tv show ended, a while after, after her and Maddie are set up in new york. Also can't really remember much about Maddie.

Why did men have to be the same the world over? New York was meant to be different to everywhere else, it was meant to be a city that didn't sleep, but the men were still all creeps. Sure there were probably some nice men about, but she hadn't met any of them. True she had only dated six men since she had arrived there and only had one second date and no third dates, but six out of six bad guys wasn't a good running total. She corrected herself, three of them had been nice enough, they just didn't excite her, there was no spark, no connection and the other 3 were freaks, including tonight's date.

She sighed with relief as she made it home, barely able to wait to get in, order some food and phone Renee to tell her about her latest endeavour.

She glanced at the clock as she walked in and tried to stay quiet. Maddie would be in bed by now and she didn't want to wake her, she had a test tomorrow. She dropped her purse and went into the living room of her apartment.

"You are supposed to be in bed" she said, attempting to be stern as she saw her daughter sat there, curled up in a chair, light from the laptop shining on her face.

"Oh, hey Ally" she glanced up quickly, looking slightly guilty at been caught still up, "how was your date?" she added, trying to take the heat off herself.

Ally simply looked at her and groaned, "Let's put it this way, I won't be seeing him again. What are you still doing up?"

"Revising" Maddie answered, far too quickly.

Ally smiled gently at her daughter, "Say goodbye to whoever you're talking to or close whatever you were doing and go to bed." Ally watched as Maddie hit a few buttons, typed a few words and closed the lid of the laptop. "Don't forget to set your alarm" she called up the stairs as Maddie trudged towards her bedroom.

She heard some grumbled reply and waited for the sound of a door closing before heading back into the living room and picking up the phone. She dialled th number of her favourite take-out and ordered her usual without having to even look up the number. It was her ritual after a bad date, order from the same chinese, and then get some ice-cream out of the freezer to defrost and call renee while she waited for it to arrive.

She pressed speed-dial number 1 on her phone and waited for it to be picked up.

"Hello?" she heard a voice ask and relaxed, curling up on the sofa, ready for a long rant to her best friend.

"Hey, how are you?"

"I'm fine, from the fact you're calling already I take it your date didn't go well." Ally smiled at Renee's lack of small talk, she wanted the gossip and she wanted it now.

"It was a very definite bad date. Not even a question mark. He took me to dinner and said that they used a pine scented cleaner rather than lemon on the floors and refused to eat there and so took me to a bar. Fell asleep twice on the bar."

"Hold on Ally! You can't hold it against him that he fell asleep, he's a narcoleptic, you knew this, it's why you were representing him, he'd been fired for sleeping on the job. And the lemon thing is no weirder than some of your quirks."

"Wait, I'm not finished. So we were at this bar and they didn't do food, so I'm now starving, but we got on ok, wasn't an instant click but we had things in common and no major differences as far as I could tell, so we talked for a while and I said I had to get home as it was getting late and so he came outside with me, and he leaned in for the goodnight kiss, and he fell asleep!"

"He fell asleep, as he was about to kiss you?"

"No, he fell asleep as he was kissing me!" Ally held the phone away from her ear for a second as Renee laughed down the phone at her.

"That's got to be a new record, even for you. You put a guy to sleep just by kissing him." Renee replied as she continued to laugh.

"Ok, you can stop laughing now it's not that funny."

"I told you all the guys in New York were freaks."

"You also said that about all the guys in Boston and there were a few decent ones."

"Like who?"

"Like ... like ..." she was struggling to think of any, but refused to give up, "like Brian, he was decent."

"He was dull"

"But he was a stand-up decent guy. Anyway there are some, it's just th only ones I can think of are ones I've dumped and that's just a depressing thought. I went out with some good guys, I just seem to be a freak magnet in between those times. I just want a guy who understands me, who I can talk to, who I'm happy with."

"Don't we all, you do know you've just described a dream, that man doesn't exist."

"He does exist, and I let him get away. And he wouldn't run a mile when he finds out about Maddie."

"Ally" Renee sighed, "we've gone over this. You did your mourning over Larry, I don't see why you suddenly went back to dreaming about him when you got to New York."

"Because I finally truly understood why he said he had to move away to be nearer his son, it was a good reason, and I realised he didn't move away to be nearer his ex-girlfriend. I mean I moved across the country to make things better for Maddie, his situation was no easier than mine."

"Ally, stop dreaming over Larry again, you still live in different states and nothing is going to change that, you can't move 'cos Maddie needs to be in New York and he can't move 'cos he wants to be near his son. Besides he doesn't know where you live anymore and you don't know where he lives either. You probably couldn't find him anyway. Get yourself focused and stop living in the past. You know it's what's best for you."

"You're right" Ally admitted resignedly. She hated when Renee was right about things like this.

"I can still dream of somebody similar to him in this state though."

She looked up as the buzzer rang and walked across the room, she pushed down the button, "Come on up," she said and buzzed them into the building. "Chinese is here" she told Renee as she cradled the phone between her ear and her shoulder and grabbed her purse.

She pulled open the door, fumbling for some money, still trying to hold the phone, "What do I owe you?" she said, still looking in her purse.

"You don't owe me anything" a voice said and she looked up, forgetting about the purse and the phone and dropping them both.

Ally blinked and stared at the man in the doorway. She barely registered Renee's voice calling out to her from the forgotten phone to see if everything was ok. She was too shocked.

She couldn't even find her voice.

Both of them stood there simply staring at each other until Renee's shouting broke through the silence descended upon them.

Ally slowly looked down as though in a dream and saw the phone at her feet.

She picked it up and put it to her ear, as though she could only vaguely remember how to use it. "Hello?" she said softly into it.

"Ally, what the hell just happened? Is everything ok?"

Renee's voice broke through the haze that had been Ally's mind and seemed to prompt her into action.

"Renee, hold on" she glanced up again and blinked again before suddenly shutting the door in the mans face. "Renee, he's here, what do I do?" she said urgently.

"Ally, what are you on about, who's there?"

"He's here."