Characters: Michael, Lincoln (Gen)
Prompt: #96, (Writer’s Choice) “Butterflies”
Summary (pre-series): Michael and Lincoln never look at anything the same way.
Author's Notes: Written for the prisonbreak100 fanfic challenge, where I have the Gen pairing of Lincoln and Michael.
When Michael was ten, he was interested in bugs. Books from the library, trips to the Field Science Museum on free-admission days, and research at the sidewalk all captivated him. He studied how they were born, what they were made of, and the habitats they survived in. Survival was important, and what adapted and what didn’t. Some bugs were hardier than others, and those were the ones that made it even when they shouldn’t. There was hope in those bugs, in their stories. They were not ruled by their environment, not completely at the mercy of their surroundings.
But there was a beauty also in things that did not last. They were not sturdy or resilient, but Michael loved butterflies as well. Fragile and varied, their colors and delicate aesthetic brought a sense of wonder, of spring, that brightened the hard confines of his Chicago neighborhood. He did not see them often, outside of books, but they were a breath of the meadows and wildflowers that a city boy could dream of.
When Lincoln thought of butterflies, he remembered Stacy Neumann. Right on her hip, waiting in that hidden spot under the bikini line, her little blue tattoo had beckoned him again and again. She was a wild one, that Stacy, a little older and a lot more experienced, and she had tumbled for Lincoln back when he was just learning how to make the moment last and how to make a woman moan. He’d never thought it was serious, and maybe neither did she, but they would find themselves rejoining, drawn like magnets back to the force of their attraction even when logic said they had other places to be. They would never have made it going long-term, never seriously considered it, and before too long Veronica had drawn him away.
But when he thought of that tattoo—and the secret, shy longing it hinted at for a girl who might have wanted a deeper and more lasting love—he wondered if how he remembered things was how they really were. Because when he called up her laughter, and the way her eyes had glistened when she saw him, he thought that maybe, just maybe, the two of them should actually have tried.
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