Michael woke up in a dark and unfamiliar room. Holding someone in his arms. Realizing it was Liz; he snuggled closer, smelling the floral shampoo she used in her hair. He tightened his arms around her and settled back to sleep with a smile on his face.
Liz opened her eyes as she felt Michael pull her closer to him. She sighed softly and went back to sleep peacefully. Holding his hands close to her heart.
The rest of the week passed quickly, Michael had stayed with Liz every night her parents were away. Their bond growing closer and closer, yet they never talked about what was happening between them directly. Now that the Parkers were back things were a little awkward.
Maria refused to even see Michael, making work hellish and hanging out difficult. A week and a half had passed since their argument and they still weren't talking.
Jeff Parker was at his wit's end as to how to handle the situation as Michael was his best cook and Maria had been a waitress at the Crashdown for what seemed like forever.
It was Friday night and Michael and Liz were stuck closing yet again. But this time they had plans to hang out with Isabel and Kyle at the Valenti's place. Max had discovered a sudden clue to maybe find a way to communicate with his son that involved Brody, so he had asked Maria along for back up.
They rode over to the Valenti's house on Michael's motorcycle. Enjoying the freedom that the wind evoked, Liz wrapped her arms around Michael's waist and pressed herself tightly against him. She was fighting a losing battle to keep her growing attraction to Michael under wraps. She relished every opportunity they had to be alone, but felt like the worst possible human being when she thought of Maria and Max and the hurt they would feel if she ever acted on it.
Michael thought he would slam into a tree when he felt Liz's breasts brush up against his back. Her hands wrapped around his middle. He had a mental image of placing her in front of him facing him and making love to her right then, right there. He could imagine Liz's tight wetness around his shaft and the rhythm they would set as the motorcycle's engine purred beneath them. Michael groaned in pain. Getting off the bike without embarrassing himself would be a project.
They arrived at the Valenti's all windswept and hot and bothered. Neither of them looking each other in the eyes. When Kyle swung open the door and waved them in, he looked back and forth between them questioningly. "What's up guys? You look like you swallowed something the wrong way."
"Nothing," muttered Michael.
"Nothing," echoed Liz. "Just a lot of work today at the Crashdown. And we got stuck on clean-up duty alone again."
"Does that bother you?" Michael interjected, stung by the idea that Liz didn't enjoy the quiet moments they shared together when the diner shut down for the evening.
"The clean-up duty? Hell yeah. Especially when I get stuck closing every night. Don't you?"
Michael frowned. "Right. Yeah. It sucks."
Liz glanced at Michael. He sounded weird. Even for Michael. But she shrugged and then thought that he might have thought that she hated to spend time alone with him. So she leaned up and whispered in his ear, "The only good thing about it is when we get to do it alone, together," before settling down on the couch next to Isabel.
"So tell me Isabel, what's going on with you and Kyle?" Liz whispered as the boys had gone into the kitchen for refreshments.
"Um...I don't know. He's been really good to me since the whole Alex thing. And he lost a lot when Tess left. We've been hanging out, and it's been feeling right. But I worry...what might Alex think, you know. Maybe this is wrong." Isabel began speaking shyly, haltingly. She and Liz had never been the best of friends, but they had both loved Alex. And Liz knew Kyle better than any of the others. Her reaction was key to how much she would be able to open up.
"Izzy...all Alex ever wanted was for you to be happy. If Kyle is what does it for you, go for it. Don't waste any time with the people you love, you never know how things might change. Kyle is a wonderful person. Things between us might not have worked out, but that had more to do with me, than it ever did with Kyle."
"Liz, thanks. Really." Isabel embraced Liz quickly and the two girls were smiling at each other when the boys re-entered the room.
"What have you done now Parker?" questioned Kyle as he entered the room with bowl in hand. Michael came in right behind him with a tray of drinks, and quietly seated himself on the floor, resting the back of his head against Liz's legs.
"What are you getting at Valenti? Huh? And if that's popcorn hand it over!" Liz responded teasingly, as she unconsciously stroked Michael's hair.
The small gesture did not go unnoticed by Isabel and Kyle. The easy manner that existed between Michael and Liz had been under debate between them. But knowing the problems that would arise in the group if something ever did happen, they decided to keep quiet until forced to have an actual opinion.
Personally, Isabel was secretly excited by the idea of Michael and Liz getting together, she had always thought that they made a better pair than Max and Liz ever did. There was more passion between them. And maybe Liz's dreams might actually pass for actual entertainment.
As for Kyle, he didn't think the idea of Michael and Liz sucked. Well, maybe for Maria and Max it did, but personally he couldn't help but hope that Michael won. Just to stick it to Max. Although he would feel really badly if Maria did get hurt. But it didn't matter what he thought. Because what ever would happen between them would happen no matter what he thought about it.
"So what are we watching? And who picked the movie?" Michael asked from the floor.
"Kyle picked." Isabel said before continuing to "Kyle, You can just press play, its all prepped."
"Thanks, Izzy. We're watching Snatch. I figure it has Brad Pitt for the girls and more than enough guns for us guys," said Kyle as he made himself comfortable next to Michael. "Can you dim the lights?" he asked Isabel.
Isabel magically dimmed the lights, and the four friends settled down to watch the movie. Looking very much as if they were on a double date.