Character: Michael (Gen)
Author’s Notes: Written for the prisonbreak100 challenge, where I have the Genfic pairing of Lincoln and Michael. This is for prompt #23, “Lovers.”
Love is a mystery Michael has yet to solve.
He didn’t date in high school, where he could barely talk to the non-geek girls at all. He made some progress late in college, even going with someone for weeks at a time, but nothing lasted very long. He’d always felt ungrounded, always just obviously out of his depth. There was a whole underlying dynamic going on that he never really understood—phone calls he returned “too late,” times where he went too far or did too little. He never expected that anything could be so complicated as these relationships other people just seemed to have.
He wished back then that he could ask someone about it, but he usually went to Lincoln with his questions, and that was clearly the wrong place to start. Lincoln’s dating habits went to the other extreme—a new girl every week or two, sometimes more than one at a time. That didn’t seem right either. Lincoln might gripe a little when one of those girls broke things off, but it never bothered him all that much when it was over. Michael, on the other hand, had sometimes spent uncomfortable hours listening to the fallout of Lincoln’s messes. Even as a teenager, Michael could tell this wasn’t behavior he wanted to emulate. He might cause pain accidentally, through inexperience or ignorance. But he could certainly avoid doing it out of callousness or carelessness.
He still thinks there should be a dictionary, or a blueprint, for all of these things he just doesn’t get. He’d make his own decoder ring if it would help, if he could find the formula to put into it.
But he knows he’ll have plenty of time to figure it all out, after he breaks in and out of prison to rescue his brother. If he makes it out alive, he can pick up the pieces later and try to feel his way toward normalcy.
Sometimes he wishes that he would meet someone special, and that she would just know all the right things to do and the right ways to be. It would be so nice not to have everything resting on his shoulders, always waiting for him to make that inevitable mistake and ruin it.
He knows it’s a fantasy, and an unlikely one at that. But with all the things he’s hoped for over time, none of which came true, this one is a little different.
It has the ring of possibility.
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