Timeline: February 24th, 2008
Laughter had faded as the two walked back to the house. Ramiel pulled a flask form his jacket pocket and took a drink from it. He offered the flask to Michael.
“So why don’t you tell me what has been going on with you.” Ramiel asked in a calm and low voice.
Michael took the offered flask, and took a drink, handing the flask back to Ramiel.
“There has been alot of different things going on with me. Which one do you want to know about first?”
Ramiel stopped and moved to a tree off the path. He sat down and motioned to the spot next to him. “Why don’t you start with how you have been acting since the hotel and Tara. Then tell me why you left the police force, and from there you can explain the hermit act. For starters. Then after that maybe you will enlighten me as to why you were blowing in my ear.”
Michael stretched, then sat down next to Ramiel, and leaned back against the tree.
“I’ve been feeling guilty since that evening with Tara, because of the look on Selene’s face when I came out of the motel room. Granted that we were drunk, and the whole de-aging thing, I was not acting like myself. The look of disappointment, betrayal, on Selene’s face that night, well… well I felt a deep sense of guilt over what I did in that room.
“And now, if I want to continue my relationship with Selene, she told me that I need to win her back.”
Ramiel watched him as he spoke. “She doesn’t share huh?” He took another drink. “So all the isolation, lack of sleep, lack of caring has been over guilt. Now you don’t know how to make it up to her? Or is it that you don’t know if you want to?”
“Oh trust me, I truly want to make things right.” Michael paused, before he continued, “But lately my mind is blank on what to do. You have any ideas, after I get done groveling?”
He laughed. “Oh I could show you a few things.” Ramiel looked into his eyes. Judging how serious he was about the situation with Selene.
“Here I thought maybe you were changing sides after our weekend together.” He said with a smile. Thinking about it for a minute he went on. “Is there something more with you and Selene? I mean usually it is not too difficult to make up for getting drunk and sleeping with someone else. But then I am lucky Lyla doesn’t care.”
“I guess you don’t know yet,” Michael said. “Selene is pregnant with my child.” Michael looked at Ramiel, to see what his reaction would be with that information.
“Congrats.” He said as he handed the flask back to Michael. “Is this a problem for you?”
“Thanks,” Michael said as he took the flask. “No I don’t see it as a problem, at least I don’t have the issues that you had. The night Selene told me,” Michael smiled as he thought about that night, “she started the conversation with why I didn’t use a condom. Selene thought I was going to be angry over her being pregnant. I told her that I wasn’t, that I am just as responsible for her being pregnant as she was.”
“Problems I had. Oh that’s nice.” Leaned back against the tree so his shoulder was touching Michaels. “I’ll have you know that I am actually happy about Lyla. Sure it was a surprise. Well fine I was pissed. But only because I was loosing Serena.”
Ramiel sighed. “Of course now I have lost her.
“I know I acted poorly. No one thinks I am seriously happy with the thought of being a father. But like Peter, it is my happy thought. It keeps me grounded when things get dark. Well, I guess we are going to have to win her back for you, and soon. A pissed off Uratha is nothing I want to deal with.
“Okay, so now I know what is going on and what is with the hermit act. Now I get to find out what was with you blowing in my ear, right?”
“I also thought that you wanted to know why I quit the police department,” Michael said.
“Oh yeah. Or are you avoiding the question?” Ramiel teased.
“There are a couple of reasons of why I quit. One was so that I could have more time to study and experiment with my magic. The other reason was because I was wanting to start up a gunsmith shop. To work on custom jobs, jobs that are not looked well upon by the athorities. Like some of the modifications that I did for your guns.”
“If that is what makes you happy. I know I wouldn’t mind having you around more. Especially when we become Mr. Moms.
“So how about now? Why not give me a wet willy, slimy eye? Why blow in my ear?” He was pushing at this point and he knew it.
Michael took a deep breath, then let it out slow, before he continued. “You know, I have been kind of trying to wrap my brain around that myself. At the time I did it, I guess I did it to tease you.”
“Interesting.” Ramiel replied. “Wonder if you would do it again?” He smiled though Michael could not see it. “I’m sorry things got a little out of hand back in Baltimore.”
“I’m not sure if I would do it again,” Michael stated. “But then I might, who knows.”
Michael was thoughtful for a moment, “Yeah, Baltimore, was…. well it was what it was. I was a little surprised on how far things had gotten. But I’m not ashamed of what happened.”
“Ashamed? Neither am I.” He laughed. “Not that I would be. No, something else entirely.” Ramiel slouched down a little resting his arms on his knees.
“And what would be that ‘something else entirely’?, Michael asked.
Ramiel hesitated. Unsure if he wanted to tell Michael. “Fear.” He said.
“What is it that you fear? You can tell me anything; you know it.”
“I suppose you deserve the truth. I just don’t know if I want anyone to know. Lyla found out and I didn’t want her to know.” He sighed and rested his head against the tree. “Guess it can’t harm me anymore anyway.”
“While we were embraced in the hotel. I didn’t want to stop. I was teasing Rey at first. Surprised that you were going along, so I was just having fun. But when I saw you were having just as much fun, and turned on as well, I didn’t want to stop. I wanted more, wanted to finish what we had started. I figure that is nothing you would want. A bad memory was recalled with that. So I ended things really fast.”
Michael was quiet and thoughtful for a moment. “I was curious as to why you stopped so suddenly. If you don’t mind me asking, what was the bad memory that caused you to stop.”
“Swear to me you will never repeat this.” He asked most sincerely.
“I swear to you that I will not repeat what you say.”
“I was raped when I was young.” He said quietly. “Some jocks found me pretty.”
Michael turned to look at Ramiel, speachless for a few moments, nor really sure on what to say.
Finally Michael spoke in a quiet tone, “Wow, I can see why you stopped that night. That night I was really unsure on how far things were going to go. I am going to tell you something, and I will hold you to swear not to tell anyone about it, as well.”
“You have my word.” Ramiel said.
“I was almost to the point of not stopping myself.”
“That is why I stopped. I moved past what happened to me long ago.” He took a drink. “But seeing you above me the way you were. I didn’t know if you were really enjoying what was happening. My mind thought about what it would be for you if I pushed things further. That thought triggered the memory. I thought it would be like rape for you. That I would never do. I didn’t want you to do anything you didn’t want to.
“I have been with men. Not as much as I am with women. I have very high standards for what takes me to a man’s bed. Truthfully, I am surprised I had a flash of fear. But I guess it was just the thought that I might be forcing you. I didn’t want that.”
Michael was thoughtful for a moment, then said, “I respect you more for telling me why you stopped. And also for not forcing things. So what do we do now?”
“Well one, we get you back in Selene’s good graces. As far as anything else, well if she doesn’t want to share you with a woman, I doubt she would want to share you with a man.” He laughed.
“We are friends Michael. No matter what. So what happened in Blatimore, stays there. If anything ever happens between us again. Well I always like to have fun. You know Lyla would be up for it. Okay, that is getting ahead of myself.
“For now we focus on getting you back with Selene. Maybe get back home and get some sleep.”
Michael stood up, then offered his hand to Ramiel, to help him up. “I am all for getting back with Selene.” And with a sly smile, Michael said, “And as for the other things, well, we’ll just have to wait and see what happens.”
“Tease.” He said with a laugh. Ramiel accepted the hand and stood up. As the two turned back onto the path they heard the howl of a wolf. It echoed through the night loud and truimphant.The two stopped, looked back, then to each other and shrugged. It was late and they were very tired. They snuck into the house with ease, as it seemed empty.
With a quick smack to the butt Ramiel left Michael at his room and faded into the darkness of the stairwell.