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Story Notes:
Disclaimer: Characters belong to WB Studios.
Warning: non-explicit het
Written for: merfilly in Yuletide 2008
All the stories mention the tide coming in, washing over the sand, rushing into shore, but it goes out, too, and leaves the beach bare and raw. He sits and watches the water recede, watches it flee into the darkness, and wishes to be washed away.

Michael can hear Max.

He can hear him all the time, awake, asleep. He's beginning to think he'll still hear him when he's dead. Maybe he's dead already, and that's why he has this voice, a vampire's voice, trickling into his ears. It's one creative hell, that's for sure.

It's the worst in the middle of the day, when he sits in the sun to drive away the ghosts of dead things. Sometimes he can hear David's whisper, an undertone, an abstract rhythm beneath Max's siren song, but it fades in the daylight and disappears completely when he bathes in the light.

Max, though, draws strength from it, just like the darkness.

Max, though, is everywhere and always.

#

Max laughs whenever he kisses Star, and it makes Michael shudder and pull away. Star touches his cheek, and her fingers burn.

"You think of them still," she says. She swallows hard, and he can see her throat work. "And the blood."

But that is her nightmare, her obsession. He puts his arms around her, and she squeezes him tight, and her nails dig into his shirt. Her breath comes too fast, shallow and shaky. Her heart beats as soft as a butterfly's wings.

#

Michael can hear Max, and the times the voice is loudest, he catches Grandpa watching him, his eyes bleak, his expression knowing. Michael turns away, gets a soda or goes to lift weights or sits on the porch and stares at his bike.

He doesn't dare ride it. In the wind and the speed he fears what he will find.

#

Michael hears Max and his mouth goes dry.

He is thirsty still, and cannot drink.

End


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