“Oh my god,” Rosa moaned, “Oh my fucking god! What is it with you two?! Just… what the fuck. We’re all thinking that all the time, every single time you two are sharing space. What the fucking fuck. You two had a thing in high school that ended in devastation and have barely interacted for the past ten years and yet. And yet! Is there anything, anything at all, about your fully grown adult selves that’s not half wrapped up in the other person?
“If you two are what having a soulmate is like, I don’t know if I could stand it. How do you stand it? Constantly drowning in someone’s eyes and creepy mind melds and fucking obscure, nonsensical gestures with candy that don’t fucking mean anything, but are somehow enough to tear you apart, and not being able to breathe properly if you’re not next to each other. How do you stand having so much of you be part of someone else who could fucking leave at any moment!
“What is it with you two?!” she yelled.
She stood in the middle of the empty bar panting and furious and everyone else was looking between them like they were worried she was going to explode and also like they seriously agreed with her and wanted an answer to the question.
“Well, obviously you and your soulmate would act differently than Michael and me.”
Alex winced. He hadn’t even meant to say that. He hadn’t meant to imply that he believed he and Michael were soulmates.
And he knew, without even having to look, that Michael was staring at him with his wide, ever-changing hazel eyes. He knew that if he looked, he would just get sucked in, like he always got sucked in, and then they would end up staring at each other in that way that made people think they were creepy soulmates.
“Also, we’re not…”
But he couldn’t make himself say it. He was still refusing to look at Michael, but he could imagine the look that would be on his face if Alex forced those words out. He could imagine the agonized expression. He could imagine the pain in those hazel eyes. It was familiar because he caused it so often. He hurt Michael so often even though he didn’t want to. If he could keep from causing more pain by not letting lying words escape his lips, he would.
The quiet vibrated and Alex could feel the pull in his center. The gentle, constant tug that wanted to pull him into the vicious current of their mutual love. He was helpless to it, he always had been. It was why he’d stayed away so long. Why he’d refused to come back to Roswell unless he absolutely had to. Michael was the moon and Alex was the ocean, forever caught by Michael's sway.
Their eyes met and instantly he felt magnetized. The world fell away and all he could see was Michael.
Strange how that word had never occurred to him before. Strange how he’d never realized that it would occur to anyone who looked at them. His father had called him and Michael together an infection, a disease to be burned out and eradicated. And then everyone else called them soulmates.
Rosa was right. There wasn’t anything about him that wasn’t at least half wrapped up in Michael. Michael Guerin was all twisted up in the essential parts that made up Alex Manes.
Michael Guerin was an essential part that made up Alex Manes.
It was ridiculous. It was fucking crazy. They had nothing but a few nights, a handful of hours, and a shared trauma, and yet.
Something in the depths of Alex cried out in recognition whenever Michael was near.
“Stop drowning in each other’s eyes!” Rosa shrieked.
“Okay, I think we need to take a break,” Kyle said. He was using his cautious doctor's voice. The voice that said he wanted to help but didn’t quite know how because he was a surgeon, not a therapist.