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15 January 2011 @ 09:02 pm
Burn Notice Fiction: "Empty Opportunity" (PG)  
Title: Empty Opportunity
Fandom: Burn Notice
Author: HalfshellVenus
Characters: Michael(Gen)
Rating: PG
Summary (S1): This didn't feel like freedom…
Author's Notes: For usanetwork_las and the prompt of "You are free, and that is why you are lost."
Also for writers_choice, this is "Free."


The space over the nightclub wasn't really a loft, according to Sam, but it helped Michael to think of it that way. It made living there seem less desperate, as if it were part of a long-term plan instead of simply a means to stay the hell out of his mother's house.

Either way, it was temporary. All Michael needed was a safe place to crash while he unraveled the mess behind his burn notice and got himself back into the game.

Fi didn't understand that it was temporary, or she just didn't want to. Michael could see himself still explaining it to her a year from now, except that he had no intention of being around that long. He'd quickly learned not to talk about that too much, though—neither Fi nor Sam were happy with the idea of him leaving, and his mother just kept reminding him of all those years he didn't call or write and she thought that he was dead.

Michael walked around the large room that now passed for his home. It was an industrial space—peeling paint, dirty windows, metal bunker door. It was also all he could afford. With his bank accounts frozen and no leverage against anyone, he was strapped for funds and there were no easy answers ahead.

"But you're free now, Michael," Fi kept saying. "You don't have to play by their rules. You can do anything you want."

Michael kicked a hunk of metal out of his way and watched a cloud of dust rise up in its path. He sighed, and pulled a large piece of aluminum siding away from a window. It was going to take a lot of work just to get back on his feet again, and he'd still be nowhere and have nothing to show for it when it was done.

Fi's words kept coming back to haunt him, promising a salvation that anyone else would have embraced.

This didn't feel like freedom. With all that was available to him, the only thing Michael wanted was the life he'd had before.

If he couldn't lift that burn notice, that old life would stay hopelessly out of reach.

--------- fin --------

Lisa: burn notice: michaelmeridian_rose on January 17th, 2011 07:49 pm (UTC)
Very nice.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Burn Notice Flamingohalfshellvenus on January 17th, 2011 10:35 pm (UTC)
Thank you! :)
Silver M: spiralstairsmaldeluxx on January 17th, 2011 11:01 pm (UTC)
I agree: not freedom *hugs him*
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Burn Notice Flamingohalfshellvenus on January 18th, 2011 03:51 am (UTC)
I think it's impossible for Fi to see that, in that she wants Michael to want to be in Miami, AND I think she really enjoys being a free agent. But that isn't what Michael wants.

Beautiful icon-- it looks more nautilus than staircase!
Silver M: turloughcheckmaldeluxx on January 18th, 2011 06:09 am (UTC)
It does, and it also reminds me of "House Of Leaves" (great book though a bit challenging).
Cyanne: Burn Notice Castsilver_cyanne on January 19th, 2011 02:35 am (UTC)
This is so very Michael when we meet him, very nice.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Burn Notice Flamingohalfshellvenus on January 19th, 2011 05:10 am (UTC)
Thank you! The prompt so strongly made me think of exactly how Michael's story (for us) began. Every opportunity, from Fi's perspective, but nothing that Michael actually wants.
In here, everything is beautiful...rise_your_dead on February 6th, 2011 12:47 pm (UTC)
Oh Michael - this is such a lovely character study!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Burn Notice Flamingohalfshellvenus on February 7th, 2011 04:21 am (UTC)
Thank you!

I actually find Michael the hardest of the main characters to write, which I'm sure is unusual. But the prompt here seemed so perfectly suited for him, because that conflict is the crux of his situation all the way up through S4.

What looks "free" to other people is meaningless if you've lost the only thing you really want.
In here, everything is beautiful...rise_your_dead on February 10th, 2011 12:05 am (UTC)

For me too, and I think it's because Michael can be so insular.

So true about him.