Title: Always Will Be
Summary: Maria returns to Roswell on her national tour, but will she have a reason to stay?
Disclaimer: They're not mine.
Chapter Eleven - Come Back
Michael stepped out of the shower, shaking droplets of water off his eyelashes as he grabbed the cleanest looking towel from the rail. Rubbing it across his face, he eyed what he could see of his reflection in the steamy mirror above the basin.
“Michael Guerin, you are certifiably insane. You agreed to a DeLuca surprise. You are in for it now.” Shaking his head at the pointlessness of talking to himself, he started to drag the towel across his chest, continuing his monologue despite himself.
“When she says ‘It’s a surprise’, that’s your cue to say ‘no’ you fool.”
After his paintballing surprise three days before, Maria had taken it upon herself to plan their next date. And, of course, what she was dreaming up for them was similarly a secret. This was a worrying prospect for Michael, especially since he hadn’t even seen her since that night. He knew from experience that Maria’s brain could be a terrifying place.
“Remember what happened *last* time you were this stupid?” Michael raised an eyebrow at his reflection as he continued to dry the small rivulets of cooling water running down his body.
He remembered all too well. It had been during that last summer together, after the victory at the battle that would ultimately free their lives. For the first time in, well, ever, they had all been able to spend some quality time together without any alien crap getting in the way. He and Maria had already started thinking and planning to make those steps which could make Maria’s singing dream come true. They knew that this was not only their first, but likely their last long, carefree summer together, at least for several years. They were going to make the most of it.
So when Maria bounded into his apartment one morning, a sparkle in her eyes and an excited announcement on her lips, who was he to say ‘no’ and dampen that spirit. Even if her announcement involved a ‘surprise outing’.
Michael sighed. “That damn look”, he grumbled. “Gets me every time.” That particular day the ‘look’ got him to a funfair that had set up in a nearby town. Going to a fair was one thing, riding the various rides was another matter entirely. Tirelessly, Maria had dragged him from ride to ride, insisting on taking a turn on most of them. The waltzers and the myriad of other ‘grown up’ rides were actually not too bad, but when had Maria gripped his hand and started in the direction of the carousel, Michael had dug in his heels. No was was he going on a ‘kiddie’ ride.
Some time later, Michael and Maria had walked through the ‘Exit’ gate of the Carousel. Maria with a huge childlike grin, Michael desperately struggling to appear downhearted. He had never figured out quite how she had persuaded him, but one minute he was refusing flatly and the next he found himself on the back of a brightly coloured horse. Maria had a way of persuading him to do the craziest things. Not even under pain of death would he admit the possibility that he had actually enjoyed himself.
Michael shook his head in self-disbelief as he slung the damp towel around his waist and headed into his bedroom.
“And yet I’ve set myself up once again. She tells me to pick her up for a surprise date, and I agree. She could be planning something horrible, and somehow, I don’t even care.” He sighed, recognising his feelings for what they were. It wasn’t exactly a new revelation.
“It’s Maria, it’s always been Maria.”
* * * * * *
Thirty-five minutes later, dressed in his favourite jeans, a short sleeved shirt and with his hair combed, Michael rang Maria’s doorbell nervously. In a completely uncharacteristic move, he had changed several times before finally walking out the door to the car he had once again borrowed from his roommate, who was spending the night at Tess’s. He wanted tonight to go well, whatever Maria had planned.
He wiped his slightly damp palms across his thighs as he waited for her to answer the door. When it finally opened, what he saw standing behind it took his breath away.
Maria had curled her hair and piled it loosely on top of her head, blonde tendrils falling seductively around her face. Michael’s fingers were already itching to wrap themselves in her hair and release the rest of it, and he’d only just gotten there. She was wearing a light summery dress, with a flared skirt ending just above her knees. It wasn’t something Michael had seen before, and he thought she looked stunning in it…or he would have had he been able to form a coherent thought at that moment.
Maria’s voice finally broke through his stunned stupefaction, and he realised he had been staring at her silently for several seconds. Forcing a breath of air into his oxygen-starved lungs, he met her eyes.
“Sorry. You just, you look, you…you know.” Michael stumbled, searching vainly for words. A small pleased smile graced Maria’s lips as her gaze raked over him. Her eyes lit up appreciatively.
“So do you.” She answered coquettishly.
Michael could feel his heart pounding in response to the glimmer of naked lust he detected in her eyes, but he made himself attempt to ignore it. Maria had insisted on planning something special for tonight. She would eventually be pissed at him if he did anything to screw it up, no matter how much she might enjoy the process.
At that moment, he noticed a large box sitting next to her sandal-clad feet. His face scrunched up in confusion.
“Umm…what’s with the box?”
Maria grinned and lifted her chin. “We, Spaceboy, are going on a picnic.”
“Yes.” Maria slowed her speech as if talking to a small child. “A picnic. Where you eat outside? On a blanket?” Michael shot her a look and she returned to normal speech. “Now come and help me get this box in the car. It’s kinda heavy.”
Still looking a little shocked, Michael moved to pick up the box, groaning softly as he picked it up and realised ‘kinda heavy’ was an understatement.
“Hey, what’ve you got in this thing? Bricks?”
“Just picnic stuff. You’ll see.” Michael didn’t look convinced. Carting it out to the waiting vehicle, he pushed it onto the back seat and returned to lean, as nonchalantly as possible, against the doorframe. Moments later, Maria reappeared, her bag slung over her elbow.
“Ready?” he asked gruffly, to which her pert response was,
“Of course. But the real question is, are you?”
Michael stood back as she closed and locked her front door behind her, his mind racing with possibilities for Maria’s plans and motives. Some worrying, some exciting.
* * * * *
“Ok, stop right there, next to the big rock that looks like a chicken.” Michael glanced over at Maria, who was sitting in the passenger seat as she instructed him. Pulling up next to the aforementioned rock, he turned off the engine and got out of the car. He had opened the back door and was reaching for the picnic hamper when she rounded the car to join him. He pulled the hamper out, and turned to face her.
“Maria, we have been here before.” She nodded, grabbing the folded blanket that was sitting atop the hamper.
“Yes, I know.” This spot had been the scene of what felt like hundreds of packed lunches when they had been training for what they had named ‘The Big Battle’. Protected on two sides from the wind, the sun and prying eyes by a large rock formation, it had been somewhere safe. Somewhere they felt secure enough to let their guard down a little long enough to grab a meal when they spent the whole day out in the desert.
“So why didn’t you just tell me to come here, instead of giving me that convoluted set of directions? I could have had us here in half the time!” Michael grumbled, slightly annoyed and more than a little confused by her actions.
Maria paused in her walk around the rocks and looked back at him over her shoulder. She pinned him with a smouldering look and let a saucy smile creep across her mouth.
“A girl’s gotta keep a little mystery you know.” Michael blinked. He vaguely remembered that he was supposed to be annoyed with her for something, but when she looked at him like that, he had no idea what for. Actually, he more or less had no idea about anything, as every rational thought was leaving his mind.
Noting his dazed expression, Maria carried on her path round the rock formation, a satisfied smile curving her lips. Michael followed mutely.
She was spreading the blanket out across the sand when he approached with the heavy hamper. Setting it down on an edge of the blanket he sank to the ground beside it and looked at Maria questioningly.
“So, um, what’ve we got?” Maria dropped onto the blanket beside him and opened the lid of the hamper.
“Just you wait and see,” she grinned. Michael sat back and watched as she produced several Tupperware boxes, and a few paper plates. As more and more dishes covered the blanket, he looked in astonishment at the hamper.
“No wonder it was so heavy. You sure you packed enough food there?”
“My mom helped. Seems she remembered that you always ate like a horse.” Michael’s mouth watered as she took a final covered dish from the basket.
“Is that …?”
“My mom’s chocolate upside-down cake? Yeah. She remembered how much you always liked it, even added extra pistachio nuts for you.” Maria smiled at Michael over the hamper, closing the lid. They sat motionless for a few moments, simply looking at each other. Michael slowly dragged his gaze away and grabbed a plate.
Maria watched Michael covertly as they ate. His face was relaxed, his manner more open than it had ever been five years ago. He seemed generally happier than she had ever seen him. He looked up from the chicken leg he was dousing liberally with Tabasco and caught her staring.
“Nothing.” He raised an eyebrow.
“Seriously, what?” Maria took a deep breath.
“I just, well, you look happy. Happy in a way I’ve never really seen you before. I like it.” Michael grinned.
“You look pretty happy yourself.”
“Must be the company.” Maria replied, tongue-in-cheek.
“Must be.” Michael responded, shooting her a heated glance. Maria held his gaze as Michael tucked into the chicken drumstick. A drop of Tabasco dribbled onto his chin and she had to resist the urge to lean over and lick it off for him. Although she could feel her whole body slowly heating up just from being next to him, she didn’t want to move too quickly tonight. She wanted to take this time to really get close with Michael, in a way she knew they never really had five years ago. He had let her in more than anyone else, but he had still reserved a part of himself that was much more open now.
* * * * *
Nearly two hours later, they started to clear empty dishes and tubs back into the hamper. As they ate, they had and reminisced about their past, and told stories about their lives since they had been apart. Clearing the last of the mess away, they lay back on the blanket to look at the sky, which had now darkened. The night was clear and cloudless, so they left the small borrowed camp lights in the hamper and lay in the soft light of the moon and stars.
Maria looked at the stars for a moment, then glanced back over at Michael. Noticing a spot of chocolate staining his cheek, she leaned over him to wipe it off carefully with the tip of her finger. Michael looked up at her questioningly.
“You have a bit of chocolate…” Maria told him, fading away as she became aware of their positions, with her lying half on top of him, their mouths barely inches from each other. Their eyes met, and slowly Maria leant down to softly brush Michael’s lips with her own. Her eyes closed gently as their mouths met again, a little more hungrily. Michael’s hands came up to caress her back through the flimsy fabric of her dress, and she could feel her skin burning beneath his touch.
Michael’s breathing quickened as he stroked her soft curves. He knew that if they didn’t stop soon, he wouldn’t be able to stop at all. With this in mind, he pulled away a little, taking a deep breath.
“Maria,” he groaned. “We...”
His words were cut off as she sighed his name, and brought her lips back to his, deepening the kiss. Rational thought fled as her tongue tangled with his. She explored his mouth, then retreated so he could follow. Michael could feel his body responding to her. One of her hands tangled in his hair, while the other slipped down to caress his chest. Michael withdrew from Maria’s mouth, and kissed his way up to nibble on her ear. Encourages by Maria’s breathy moans, he swept his tongue around her outer ear. The hand that had been caressing his chest and shoulders was joined by the one in his hair and Maria started unbuttoning his shirt so she could touch his bare skin. Michael moaned as she raked her nails through his chest hair, tweaking his nipples. Less than a minute later, he raised himself to shrug out of the shirt. Pulling her to lie fully on top of him, his hips cradling hers, he started working on the row of buttons down the front of her dress, returning his mouth to hers. The dress was quickly disposed of, and Maria’s bra didn’t last much longer. Maria cried out in pleasure as Michael rolled a tight nipple between his fingers, and ground her hips against the arousal straining against the front of his jeans. She reached for the button on his fly, but his hand stopped her.
“Maria, “ Michael breathed. Maria ignored him and nuzzled into his neck. “Maria, stop.” Maria looked up at hime, confused.
“Are you sure you want to do this?” Michael groaned. “We were gonna take it slow remember?” Maria sighed, frustrated, and took Michael’s head in her hands so she could look him in the eye.
“Michael, we were apart for five years, how much slower do you want to take it?” Michael tilted his head as he considered this. “And besides, it’s our third date. Stop over-thinking this and kiss me.” Michael took a deep breath and threw caution to the wind, flipping them over so Maria was under him.
Catching her lips in an ardent, passionate kiss, he brought his hands up her sides to cup her breasts. Thumbing her pebbled nipples elicited a moan of delight from Maria.
Her hands roamed over his bare back and shoulders, travelling down to slip under the waistband of his jeans and stroke his tight ass. Halting her progress round his hips by catching her wrists, he abandoned her mouth and began a journey down her neck. Burying his face in her cleavage, he kissed around each breast before finally taking an aching nipple into his mouth. As he licked and nibbled the tight bud, Maria moaned incoherently.
“Michael… just …please…”
Michael’s hand snaked down to peel off her panties, testing the wetness he found beneath them. Maria cried out and grabbed Michael’s hair.
Maria undid his fly, freeing his hard dick, as Michael fumbled in his pocket for his wallet. Together, they pulled his jeans off and threw them onto the pile of discarded clothes. His hands shaking, Michael pulled on the protection from his wallet and knelt between Maria’s thighs. Maria’s hands closed around his cock, guiding him into her as he sealed his mouth to hers. When he was fully sheathed in her, he paused for a moment to savour the exquisite pleasure of being one with Maria again after so long. He stroked his hand down Maria’s cheek, pulling back to say apologetically,
“It’s been so damn long. I don’t think I can last…”
“Michael,” Maria gasped, “really not a problem.” Maria trust her hips, and drew his mouth back to her own. Michael started to move, their bodies joining in an ever increasing rhythm. Very soon their combined cries of ecstasy rang out into the desert.
* * * * *
Maria shivered as she lay in Michael’s arms, basking in the afterglow.
“Cold?” Michael asked, nuzzling the seam between her neck and her shoulder.
“A little, and I have sand in places I didn’t even know there were places.”
“Shower then?” Michael swept his hand over her body, and she could feel his cock already hardening again against her thigh.
“Yeah, shower.” she answered, leaning round to kiss him again, her skin once more heating.
Some time later, they gathered up their clothes, and headed back to the car.