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Tell Me

Discussion in 'General' started by lisek16, May 26, 2003.

  1. lisek16

    lisek16 Scout

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2002
    Location:
    New Jersey
    Title: Tell Me

    Author: Lisek16 (Lisek16@yahoo.com)


    Rating: PG

    Ship: Vaughn/Alice; mentions of Vaughn/Sydney

    Disclaimer: you are sadly mistaken if you believe I own the rights to Alias. Sorry to burst your bubble.

    Summary: “Tell me there was no one else. Tell me that we broke up because we grew apart and things changed. Tell me that I didn’t see it, that I was too head-over-heels in love with you, to see the blinding signs… tell me…”

    Plot notes: The story takes place back in season one when we learn that Vaughn and Alice have broken up during/around Thanksgiving. We all know they get back together in mid season two, but how they got to that point… that’s anyone’s guess. So pretty much this is my attempt of the CM Challenge for May, set in Alice’s perspective. Enjoy.

    ********

    ( - Alice POV -)

    There are a thousand ways to destroy a man, and this, you muse, is but one of them.


    It's been too many months since a civil conversation was held between the two of you. It's been many sleepless nights where you wondered if he was dreaming of her. You have rolled over at least once a week to discover he slipped out without even a note.


    Then he calls you, and there is something different in his voice. You think he's changed and that maybe he's realized that he's on the verge of loosing you.


    He will lose you, though. He'll lose the best thing he's ever had, unless he changes. You are expecting a proposal and a ring. You are expecting this to be the happiest day of your life. But when he approaches you, at the little cafe you shared lunch in so many times before, he has no sweaty palms, no mischievous smile which hints what's-to-come.


    He gives you the courtesy of asking how you are. As you go off on a tangent about the new girl in your office, you've lost his attention. He's somewhere else, thinking about someone else all the while.


    "Alice... this isn't working..." he interrupts.


    It feels as though you were shot, unexpected is an understatement. You can't believe this could happen to you. "It can work, if you only tried. You're never home, you never call, you're always busy...I get that. You used to make the time for me..."


    "It’s different now, I'm different."


    "Michael, people change, I've changed to." you say, almost believing it yourself. But the truth is you haven't changed, you are still the same woman you were years ago.


    "People grow apart, and go there separate ways." He retorts.


    You're desperate now, you're loosing him... he's slipping through your slender fingers. You have to make a drastic move, so you tell him, "Michael, I know you're having an affair. Seeing someone else behind my back. But you don't have to hide it, because I don't care. You can see her, you can go out with her in public, but you don't have to leave me for her. I'm not making you choose."


    His face contorts and his eyes cloud over. You can tell something is troubling him, and that something is not breaking it off with you.


    "Michael, spare me the whole 'we can be friends' speech. I am your friend...more than your friend. You can tell me why you THINK we can't see each other any longer. You can tell me..." you say, trying to elicit some sort of a response. Perhaps you raised your voice in this attempt to win his trust. Perhaps you went a little overboard and disrupted the meals of the diners around you.


    "Alice, you’re making a scene." he hisses.


    "A scene?" you ask, still caught up in this argument, "A scene? I'm making a scene? You didn't deny it; you’re breaking up with me for another woman. What could I have done differently? What didn't I give you?"


    "It’s not you, it's me." he mumbles.


    It seems as though as his voice lowers, yours rises. You don't care if everyone in the restaurant knows he's leaving you. It's not about embarrassment; no it's far more important than that. It's about admission. You want him to say that he's leaving you for her...whoever she is.


    "I'm not leaving you for someone else, I'm leaving because there is no reason to stay." he says in a hurt voice.
    Your words, your scene have hurt him. You had never hurt him before. Never. He'd always argue back, and sure he'd be angry, but never hurt. No, he'd let it roll off him like water. But today was different. He was different, maybe he had changed.


    You look at him and he's still the same man you loved...love. He's no different. He can't be. So you continue on, assuring yourself all the while that you can't really be hurting Michael.


    "Incentive? You need a reason to stay?" you scream as you grasp at the few straws left. Without warning you lunge at him, prepared to attack his lips, in a feeble attempt to win him back.

    But he's quicker than you, and he pulls away. Immediately following that rejection you suddenly become self conscious and notice that the entire restaurant has shied away from their lunch and have completely focused on you and your spat with Michael.


    Finally lowering your voice, you rumble almost inaudibly, "Michael, if you do this to me… you’ll regret it." you are unsure if he caught your idle threat. After all you love him too much to hurt him...any more.


    So you storm out of the restaurant, figuring you'll never see him again. He'll send Eric over for the last of his belongings, a lonely toothbrush and a gym bag. Then, he'll be out of your life for forever. Good, you think, you deserve someone better. It's a clean break; a chance to start over. So you try to meet someone else, specifically someone better. But the men you encounter are never good enough because you self consciously compare them all to Michael.


    So you come to a decision, you have to win Michael back. He's the one. He's the best relationship you were ever in. He's who you should spend the rest of your life with. Now that time has passed, he's had time to think about things...you. Maybe he misses you, misses the way you used to laugh...your smile...your heart.


    So you set to work, winning him back. It has to be a chance encounter you think. So you hire a private investigator to track down his schedule. You also ask him to take pictures of Michael, because you want to know why he left you for her. What does she have that you don't?


    ********


    One afternoon, your investigator calls and claims the five hundred dollars you agreed upon isn’t going to cut it, at least if you wanted the photos and the information you are paying him for. Extortion, you think to yourself, he knows you are going to pay. So you meet with him at a bar. You arrive first and impatiently wait while debating if you should order some fruity cocktail to calm your nerves, instead you order Vodka on the rocks. Actually you order four of them.


    By the time your investigator friend enters the smoky dive you agreed upon, you are completely and utterly useless. You are drunker than you had ever been before, and you don’t even realize. He sits on the stool next to you at the bar, and slides a manila folder your way. You look at him quizzically, forgetting for a moment why you are even there.
    “What about the money?” you ask him, before satisfying your curiosity. Didn’t he tell you on the phone that you need to pay him an additional five hundred in order to see these photos.


    He doesn’t say anything, so you take the liberty of looking at the surveillance photographs. You flip through them carelessly, just trying to absorb what you are seeing. You’re seeing him in a warehouse late at night talking with a brunette. You see him meeting her at the airport, visiting with her at the carwash. You see him and her, but you don’t know why. Not one of the pictures showed any displays of affection. Maybe the investigator spared you the pain of seeing them in bed together. Maybe he selected only incriminating photos, enough to whet your interest…enough to spend another five hundred to see the extent of their real relationship. But you have seen enough, you knew he was cheating on you, now you know with whom.


    From what you gather she’s a tall, leggy, beautiful brunette. That’s all you know, but you need a little more information to answer your question: What does she have that you don't? So you look up to your investigator friend and ask, “Who is she?”


    But you’re looking at nothing, because he must have stepped out long ago, he didn’t even ask for more money. He just vanished, leaving you with the power to threaten Michael. Maybe he’s still hiding their relationship because she’s married, maybe she’s dating someone else…maybe there is really nothing between them.
    Don’t be naïve Alice; you think to yourself, he left you for her even though he couldn’t bring himself to say that to your face.


    You decide to pool your bravery and your lack of inhibition and call Michael. You practice saying it a hundred times, “Michael, its Alice. We need to talk. Call me…” But by the time his answering machine actually picks up, all is lost and you begin rambling. The bulk of your message is incoherent, but you did mention something about him needing to return this call, and how you have newfound love for hockey but you still can’t understand why you have to go to the ice skating arena to watch them play on a field.


    You curl up on your couch waiting for him to call back. You’d wait for a lifetime, if need be, but he calls you back within a few hours. Enough time for you to sober up a little.


    “Alice, Is everything okay?” he asks as you pick up the phone. The phone had woken you from your drunken stupor, still groggy you forgot that you had even broken up.


    “Hey sweetie. I missed you last night…How’s Donovan?” you respond, your voice is heavy with sleep and hoarse from the alcohol.


    “Alice, Is everything okay?” he repeats, more concerned this time.


    You are starting to come to, things are making sense, and you realize that you need to focus. (This is not the time for drunk Alice and her ramblings, there is a time and place for that…the company Christmas party.) Tonight, you need to be in control.


    “I’m fine, I’m just a little drunk.” You say, knowing that Michael understands. He knows a glass of champagne makes you tipsy…and you had lot more than that today. “I need to see you. There are some things I need to say to you. But not on the phone.”

    His voice is a little relieved, you think. “When. Where…” he fumbles to express himself in full sentences but fails miserably.


    “Tonight.” It has to be tonight, you muse; it has to be before you lose the nerve from the remnants of liquid courage you consumed.


    ********


    You agree to meet for coffee at a local breakfast joint. It’s the type of place where they serve pancakes all day and all night. You tell him, you always liked it there; but the truth is you think the mixture of coffee and florescent lightening will make what you have to do easier.


    You arrive early, but you don’t exit your car. You, instead, park towards the back of the lot and wait for him to arrive. As soon as you’re sure that he’s inside, waiting for you, you lock your car and rush into the diner.


    You smooth your hair and reapply your lipstick as you strut confidently over to the booth he camped out in. You bat your eyes and shake your hips as you are approaching. You’re hoping to catch him off guard. You are hoping to remind him of what he’s missing.


    But he doesn’t notice. You slide onto the plastic bench across from him before he even notices your presence. This discouraging, but you don’t let it stop you. You find that you have to say his name several times before he looks up. There is no glimmer of hope that he has missed you. He doesn’t look happy to be here, he doesn’t look like the Michael you are trying to win back. His eyes are clouded over, like they were when he told you that he needed to break up with you. There are circles under his eyes, and his skin is paler than you remember.


    If you didn’t know any better, you’d swear it was because he missed you, but that wasn’t it. It was something else. Perhaps… someone else.


    “Why are we here Alice?” he asks quietly. He is staring intently at the menu, he’s not debating whether to order the omelet or the short stack; he’s trying to keep his composure intact.


    “We’re here, because there are some things I don’t understand.” You begin. “When you broke up with me over Thanksgiving weekend, I didn’t handle myself very well. I said and did some things that were…albeit…inappropriate. But I didn’t ask why…”


    He shakes his head and sighs. “I told you why. It wouldn’t be fair to you, if my heart wasn’t in it.”


    “No, if you didn’t care about me, you would have had no problem cheating on me and lying about it to me the next day. But why did you need to cheat on me?” you ask as you disguise your hurt, in concern for him. You are trying to be sympathetic and nonjudgmental. You are trying to be the antithesis of all the things that you thought could have driven him away.


    “I told you there was no one else.” He mumbled.


    “No. You never really denied it, at least not to my satisfaction. Tell me there was no one else. Tell me that we broke up because we grew apart and things changed. Tell me that I didn’t see it, that I was too head-over-heels in love with you, to see the blinding signs… tell me…” you wail.


    It was too late to win him back, he was long gone. You abort my mission to win him back, but there is a chance that you could find out what is eating him alive. You needed to know if you drove him away, or if something else interfered.


    He shook his head, and didn’t answer, but you knew someone had broken his heart, the way he had broken yours.


    “Is she married?” you ask. He didn’t flinch.


    “Is she seeing someone else?” you continue to probe.


    “Did she break up with you?” you question him.


    He shakes his head and looks directly at you. He looks at you, as if he sees you for the very first time. “No.” he responds. His eyes sear into yours. It’s as if his eyes are saying, what he can’t bring himself to. He never had her, or maybe she doesn’t love him, the way he loves her. There is something blocking their potential happiness. Something, that no matter how much you berate him, he won’t divulge to you. He allows himself to wallow in it, he allows himself to be a victim, in that sick sadistic situation.


    It occurs to you, that he put up with it all along… all the grief you put him through, all the nasty remarks…he took it like a man. Now he needs a friend, an ally. And even though, he didn’t love you like he loved her, he deserves a friend. You owe him that.


    Because you had destroyed him, or maybe she had.


    “She doesn’t know what she’s missing…” you rumble into his ear as you hug him.


    “She knows.” His whispers to himself, so softy that he isn’t aware that you can hear him.


    He knows you’re there for him, and you think to yourself, we are better off as friends then as lovers.


    You’re finally at peace with the break-up.


    1/1
     
  2. kylo4

    kylo4 Rocket Ranger

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2003
    Location:
    Canada
    I like it so far.
    kylo4
     
  3. aliaschick4mv

    aliaschick4mv Rocket Ranger

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Location:
    East Coast
    I like it! Great Alice POV, as much as I don't like her, she makes for an interesting fic POV, you don't see enough of it. Great job!

    Luve ya,
    Dani
     

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