Title: (I don't want to be) Alone

Author: Kylie (kyliesmilie26)

Pairing: Mike/Eric 3

Rating: Teen

Summary: Eric has an agonisingly painful nightmare. He wakes up alone. Who does he turn to?

Disclaimer: I don't own, or have anything to do with, the amazing Michael Palin or Eric Idle. They are real people and own themselves. I just fawn over them like the squeeing fangirl that I am.

Notes: This was partly inspired by reading Nyssa's (igbc) amazing oneshot - Dream. So thank you; you are one of the best fanfic writers I have ever read. *hugs* I have tried my very best to not make it too similar to that absolute masterpiece. Which I can assure you this isn't. I'm no writer; I just dab at it from time to time.

I have to confess to being an absolute sucker for comfort!fics and this was something that I could not pass up. :) I also have a big thanks to my darling Meg (mevh88) for being such a wonderful friend and inspiration. *hugs* 3

Feedback would be lovely and I hope you fall in love this baby, even just that little bit. :)

*M&E*

He was alone. All alone.

That was the first thing he noticed when he opened his eyes.

Darkness surrounded him, and it was cold, painfully cold. He had never felt anything so numbingly cold in his thirty years.

He couldn't place where he was. His eyes furiously darted around; desperately trying to get a grasp on something, anything that could provide some hint as to his whereabouts. He could not see anything, the pitch black seemed endless.

Oh holy fuck. I want out... get me out of here.

It was utterly terrifying. Eerily, eerily silent. It was like he was the only person, (or thing), left on the planet. There was absolutely nothing around him apart from this silent darkness and hypothermic cold air, which seemed to be crushing him in a bear hug, clutching tight and refusing to let go.

He tried to run... it didn't matter what direction. Anything was better than staying where he was. But it was like his feet were pinned firmly to the ground beneath and try as he might he could not move. He was trapped.

"Help me! Please? Somebody HELP!" He screamed, not caring if he sounded like a frightened school girl. Because at this very moment he felt like he was a small boy, back at the Ophney... that ghastly hole of a prison imitating a school.

Suddenly, despite the dark, he saw his old school building right in front of him. Horrible, painful memories flooded his conscious. It was like watching a horror movie - with one notable exception - he was the star of this movie. It was enough to send him to knees, his legs giving out, rocking back and forth like a baby.

"Please, somebody... anybody. Get me out of here. Get. Me. Out."

*M&E*

His eyes shot open as he sat up, ramrod straight. He was gasping for air; his lungs heaving, sucking in all the available oxygen he could find. He looked around, eyes desperately seeking some light source. Finding his lamp in the darkness, he flipped the switch.

Light now surrounded him. His eyes squinted as he adjusted to the sudden brightness.

Now he wasn't in total darkness he felt the smallest release of tension take leave from his person. His heart was beating erratically, and he was drenched in sweat.

He wrapped his arms tightly around himself, shivering quite heavily despite the sheen of perspiration poring from him. He pulled the blankets right up to his chin, curling into the foetal position to try to get warm. He was so cold. So cold.

I want Mikey...

Yeah right Idle. Like he's going to come running at god knows what time in the morning. Especially after what happened. No chance in hell.

Mike...

*M&E*

A few hours earlier

Mike clutched the glass tumbler tightly in his hand, staring mindlessly at the now half empty bottle of gin. He and Eric had been together for about six months now, and the secret was getting harder and harder to keep.

At first it was just some fun between two mates and co-workers after a drunken night of passion. Somewhere along the line though things got more serious. It became something stronger, and Michael was unable, (and unwilling), to fight it. He had fallen for Eric, and hard.

He gulped down what was left in his glass and refilled. The problem was, it was difficult to determine if that feeling was mutual. He knew that Eric was not fooling around with anyone else, man or woman, but it was so hard to judge the depth of his feelings. He was almost one hundred percent sure that the man cared, however love? That was the million dollar question.

They had snuck off set, away from prying eyes. A subtle glance from Eric and they hastily made some feeble excuse that any daft idiot would see through and took off.

No sooner had they found their secluded hiding spot in amongst the studio buildings Eric lunged upon him, smothering him in chaste kisses. "You're bloody irresistible Palin, you know that?"

Michael chuckled, and felt his cheeks redden. "You're not so bad yourself Idle."

They kissed deeply, and Mike felt Eric's smooth tongue seek entrance, which he gladly granted. This is where things always heated up between them. Tongues fought for dominance, teeth clashing against one another. He was fast losing all coherent thought (but he did feel Eric's hand sneak into his trousers); he only wanted his Eric. Now.

"Eric..." He managed to breathlessly gasp between kisses. "Eric?"

"Mmm?" He moaned in response, or at least what he thought was in response. It could have been a moan of desire. His hazy, lust-filled mind settled on a combination of the two.

"I love you."

Eric stopped, and looked up at Michael in surprise, his heart suddenly pounding. "You what?" He eventually got out. "Love? You... love... me?"

Michael nodded, anxiety fast replacing the amazing sensations from moments earlier. "And I reckon we should tell the others."

"We can't!"

"Why not?"

"Because we just can't Mike!"

"Why not?" Michael repeated, anger creeping into his veins. "Are you ashamed of us Idle?"

He looked down, unable to look his lover in the eye.

"I see. I thought you cared for me Eric, just that little bit."

"I do Mikey, you know that!"

"But not enough to tell our friends and family about us, and you can't say it back can you?" He started to walk away, unable to be anywhere near him. Something made him turn around. "Fuck you Idle, fuck you."

He sighed as he finished yet another glass of gin, he felt it burn as it went down. "Oh damn you to hell Eric. Why did you make me fall in love with you?"

*M&E*

It's so cold, why is it so cold? I can't get bloody warm.

I'm alone, and I don't like it.

I'm so so tired, but I can't go back to sleep. I just can't...

*M&E*

Ring. Ring. Ring.

The shrill noise pierced Michael's subconscious and his eyes slowly opened, blinking furiously against the harsh light. He had fallen asleep on the couch, which was more than comfortable for laying on for a little while, but certainly not suited to sleeping. "Who the hell is fucking ringing at this ghastly hour?"

He was inclined to ignore whoever was on the other line and let it ring out. However, it seemed to never end, each ring seemingly increasing in volume.

"Who is it? You better have some fucking good excuse for ringing at four am." Mike snapped abruptly into the receiver, feeling the lingering effects of all that alcohol cause a pounding ache to hammer his forehead.

All he could hear was silence on the other end, and this turned his already livid mood into a seething anger. "Now look, if you don't identify yourself I'm hanging up because I'm not in the mood for games."

Heavy breathing was his immediate response, and he almost hung up...

"Mikey, it's me..."

No sooner had his anger appeared, an overwhelming concern took its place. "Eric? What's the matter?"

"Mi-key..."

His concern increased tenfold as he heard his lover's sobs; Eric never cried. No matter how shaken he got by his night terrors...

Realisation stuck him like a bullet to the chest. "Eric, are you okay?"

"Mikey... I'm all.. al-lone... I'mma sc-sc-scared..."

"It's okay Eric. I'll be right over. Hold on love."

*M&E*

Michael nervously rapped on the front door. "Eric?" He called, loudly but not too loudly so he wouldn't wake the neighbours.

He waited as patiently as he could for a minute or so. To hell with the neighbours, Eric needs me.

"ERIC!"

It was then he remembered that he had a key to his apartment. "Idiot, why didn't I think of that before?"

He raced back to his car - yes, he had driven, to hell with the alcohol flowing through his system, and anyway, his brief phone conversation with Eric had soon sobered him up - to find the key.

Having found said item, he raced back and opened the door. Every light in the house was blaring, which spoke volumes to Michael - this particular dream had well and truly done a number on his friend and love. He turned off the lights as he headed for the bedroom.

He found Eric lying huddled in his queen-sized bed. Oh hell... god Eric... He couldn't tell if he was rocking or shivering so badly it appeared as if he was rocking. He quietly approached the bed, not wanting to scare him even more.

"Eric?" He almost whispered, as he touched him gently on his shoulder.

Eric blinked and looked up at him with a wet-streaked face. "Michael?"

"Yeah, it's me." He replied, sitting down beside Eric. "Come here." He patted the space next to him.

Eric barely needed any encouragement. He scooted over so he was lying right next to Mike, resting his head on his lap. He felt his heartbeat slow down a touch and felt safety cocoon him once again.

Mike subconsciously finger-brushed Eric's soft blonde tresses. His fingers having a soothing effect on his harried lover. "Come on love, you need to rest."

He felt Eric shake his head. "Can't. Can't."

"Oh hush, of course you can. I'll be right here if anything happens. Besides, I need the sleep too."

Eric looked up at him, a myriad of emotions reflected in his sapphire eyes. "You promise?"

Michael nodded, "I promise, come on now, close your eyes."

Eric complied, his head still safely ensconced in the younger man's lap. Michael kept up his gentle finger-brushing as he began to feel Eric relax in his arms.

It wasn't until he heard Eric's steady breathing that he allowed himself to shift down (moving a sleeping Eric gently in the process and kissed the top of his head), so he could rest his head on the pillow. He closed his own eyes and drifted into sleep.

*M&E*

Eric lunged upon him, smothering him in chaste kisses. "You're bloody irresistible Palin, you know that?"

Michael chuckled, and felt his cheeks redden. "You're not so bad yourself Idle."

Eric's smooth tongue seeked entrance, which was gladly granted. This was where things always heated up between them. Tongues fought for dominance, teeth clashing against one another. Eric was fast losing all coherent thought (but he did put his hand into Michael's trousers and stroked); he only wanted his Mike. Now.

"Eric..." He heard inbetween kisses. "Eric?"

"Mmm?" He moaned in response, or at least what he thought was in response. It could have been a moan of desire. His hazy, lust-filled mind settled on a combination of the two.

"I love you."

Michael nodded. "And I reckon we should tell the others."

"We can't!"

"Why not?"

"Because we just can't Mike!"

"Why not?" Michael repeated, anger creeping into his veins. "Are you ashamed of us Idle?"

He looked down, unable to look his lover in the eye, and when he looked up, he found Michael stumble to the ground. Blood was pouring from his chest. Shit. "No..."

"You did this to me Idle. You put this knife in my heart because you don't love me.

It was then he saw the knife lying down on the ground beside Michael. "No... I wouldn't, couldn't do that. Michael..."

"Mmm." Michael groaned in obvious pain, his face turning a sickly grey. "Why Eric? Why?" He managed to get out in between gasps of air.

It was when he saw that his fellow Python's, (and damn well as close to a best friend as he had), hazel eyes were fast losing their amazing vitality, his very soul stopped. His feet suddenly lost their paralysis and he raced to his lover. "You can't die Mikey. You can't."

He got no response. Fuck. While terrified to touch him, he had to make sure that he was stil alive. With him. "Mike? Come on Palin wake up... please? You can't do this to me Mikey. You hear me? You can't..."

"Don't bloody die Palin, don't you dare..."

"I love you..."

"Eric?" He heard calling to him from somewhere, it sounded close, but so far at the same time. "Come on love, open those eyes for me."

Michael? No, can't be. You died in my arms.

He then felt a warm hand on his shoulder, shaking him none too gently. "You need to wake up Eric, it's just a dream. It's just a dream."

A dream?

He blearily opened his eyes and saw a very much alive Michael staring at him. His hazel eyes, while showing blatant concern, were also full of life. Those eyes were full of love.

"You okay?"

Eric nervously ran his hands through his long blonde hair, desperately trying to get the image of a dying Michael out of his mind. I was so stupid. So fucking stupid. Without giving it a moment's thought, he buried his head into his lover's chest. He needed to feel his heart beating.

Oh hell Eric, what a night you've had eh? Poor thing. Michael wrapped his arms around Eric's trembling frame, kissing the top of his head. "It's okay Eric, you're safe now."

Eric shook his head against his chest.

"Sssh love. It was just a dream. You're okay, you're okay."

Eric suddenly looked up, wiping his eyes furiously, embarrassed by his tears. "You were dying Mikey, you were bloody dying and I couldn't do anything about it."

"Oh Eric... I am right here, it's alright."

Again Eric shook his head. "No Michael it's not. You accused me of stabbing you in the heart. I know I can be a cruel bastard but I wouldn't do that to anyone."

Mike was dumbfounded. "Oh." He said so softly Eric wasn't sure if he imagined it. "Why did I do that?"

"Because of what I said yesterday, or what I didn't say. I love you Mikey, I love you so much." He pulled himself up so he could lean in and kiss him gently. "I'm so sorry I couldn't say it before, I guess I was scared or something."

Michael beamed and wrapped his arms even tighter around his Eric. "I love you. And I'm sorry for how I reacted, I probably could have handled it better."

"It was the wake up call I needed Palin. I shouldn't be so shit scared of what the rest of the world thinks. I love you Michael Palin and I don't give two hoots about what anyone else thinks. I just want to be with you."

Mike inwardly squealed at this, and let Eric know how much he appreciated that statement through his actions. He kissed him deeply, pouring all his emotions into the kiss as it turned into something more passionate...

*M&E*

Eric was woken up a few hours later by Michael, who was talking to someone on the phone.

"I'm at Eric's because he had a nightmare and he needed me alright?"

"Yes, as a matter of fact, we are together. And no John, Eric won't be coming in today, he needs some rest. I'll see you in half an hour."

"You deciding if I'm fit enough for work are you Palin?" Eric chuckled, amused yet feeling a sense of pride flow through him. Someone really cared for him for the first time in his life. And he found he did not care that someone now knew, which was a pleasant surprise because, despite what he had said (and meant) to Mike earlier in the morning, he thought that he would have a few reservations about coming out.

Michael spun around, startled. "I thought you were still asleep."

Eric shrugged as he approached him. "Well I was, but I'm not now."

He smiled, "So you are. Morning."

He received a trademark cheeky, yet genuine grin in response. "Good morning."

The end.

Thanks for reading. Thoughts?