Author: Debbie
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: If only I owned Max... I'd shake some sense into him!
Distribution: Guilty Pleasures. All others please ask first.
Summary: M/I -- Max is filled with regret after ITL&ITB.
Author's Note: Thanks go to Jessamyn for the inspiration, and more thanks to Bennie and hah for their beta skills.
Feedback: Yes please. Even short notes mean a lot to me. I accept constructive as well as positive remarks.

I'm lying here on the floor of the observatory, having just crossed a major line, engaged in the most intimate act imaginable. With Tess. But only one person fills my thoughts as I stare up at the night sky.


Everything's been happening so fast lately, all I've been able to do is react. Not think. Now I have plenty of time to think, and I wish that I didn't. I'm thinking about how I've behaved lately, things that I've said and done, and I don't even recognize myself anymore. I've snapped at everyone, lost everyone who mattered. Including Isabel, who means more to me than any kingship or planet. The only person who has stood by me is the one who … well, I wouldn't say Tess doesn't matter, because she does. But she's not close to my heart the way Isabel is. And yet I threw Isabel away and shared my body with Tess. What was I thinking?

My life used to be so ordinary, so ordered. But for the past year everything's been out of control, getting worse and worse. I was helpless at the hands of Pierce. I have a destiny I have no say in, a leadership I never asked for. Worst of all, Alex's death. All out of my control. But that's no excuse for what I did. There will never be an excuse good enough.

Oh, Isabel. Did I really say those things to you? Threaten you? My life is in such a shambles right now; I'm so confused and lost. And I just couldn't bear the idea of your moving away. You've always been there for me. You and Michael -- but you most of all. Always you. I need you now. I need you to stay and make me feel whole, to remind me of what's really important. And in my desperation to keep you with me, I did the unimaginable. I didn't just make you give up college -- I made you give up *yourself*.

I killed you.

You know, last year we were hunted just for being aliens, but our persecutors didn't really care about us individually. This year it's been because of *who* we were, who *I* am. Who I *was*. I didn't feel that was fair -- to be punished for the deeds of my former self, a life I scarcely remembered. I thought, Doesn't my human side count for anything? Aren't I a different person now? But while I may not have deserved being abused for the sins of Zan, I more than deserve it for my own transgressions. There isn't a punishment in the world that can atone for the things I did to you yesterday.

As I watch Tess sleeping, the sight of her blonde hair fills me with a new guilt. The golden strands are the wrong shade and the wrong length. I not only destroyed you, Iz, but I gave away a precious gift that should have been yours. And there is no way to take it back. Not ever.

I want to get up and leave, run straight home, go to your room, and beg your forgiveness. But I can't leave Tess without an explanation, and I don't know how to explain. Not to her, and not to you. And even if I could, I don't think you'd listen to me anymore. Not after what I did.

My only hope is that maybe you'll Dreamwalk me tonight. That would be like you, to try to see what's going on beneath the surface, to uncover the monster. Please, Iz, please do that. All my thoughts are focused on one thing, and one thing only. You'll know the truth immediately.

I'm sorry, Iz. I'm so, so sorry.


Authors Ros. Hetero Ros. Slash Ros. Other DC Slash Main