Max was a good cop, a brilliant one when he tried, but a good one. So, when he picked up Miranda one day and she was already wearing her sunglasses he knew it was going to be a challenging day.
She sat down and leaned back in the seat.
“Morning” he greeted.
She nodded, her hand rubbing her head.
“Oooo rough night?” he teased, “I didn’t think you went for that sort of thing”.
“I don’t” she muttered, and he knew she had shut her eyes.
“You want to have the day off?” he asked, knowing she’d say no, “I mean I’m sure Inés won’t mind”.
“I’ll be fine Max” she whispered.
He shrugged, “still…you’ve had breakfast right?”
“I said I’m fine Max” she replied.
Max bit his lip, “I know I uhm, we’ve not known each other long but you can tell me if you need help okay? I won’t judge you for asking for help”.
“Max” she warned.
Max chuckled, “okay okay…but the offer is still there”.
He started the car and looked across at her, she seemed to be sleeping. He smiled and began driving to work.
Miranda’s sunglasses remained on her all morning, her head focused on her desk. Barely making a noise.
“Winter…Blake” Inés barked.
Max groaned and minimized his shopping on his computer, he stood up and walked to Inés’ door before realising Miranda hadn’t moved.
He looked back at her, “Blaake”.
She looked at him and gave him a withering glare, “what?”
“Inés wants us”.
She huffed and stood, moved over to him. He touched her wrist with a finger, “you okay? Cause you’ve been silently glaring at every movement all day”.
“I’m fine Max” she whispered but didn’t move her hand away.
He opened the door and let her go in first.
Inés eyed them both, “Joan has had a theft. Given you two know him I thought it best you dealt with him”.
Max nodded, “what kind of theft?”
“Some rare bottles stolen”.
Max nodded, “okay then…let’s go” he looked at Miranda who seemed like she hadn’t taken anything of what Inés had said in.
“Miranda” he said firmly, “come on…to the car”.
Inés looked at her, “are you quite well Detective?”
“She’s fine” Max replied when Miranda rubbed her head, “she’s just being a pain today”.
Inés nodded, “take her home if she’s ill. I don’t want to deal with an ill Detective”.
Max nodded, “yes ma’am”.
Max looked at Inés and gulped.
Miranda nodded, “I’ll wait by the car”.
Max watched her move out of the office and slowly turned back to Inés.
“Is Miranda alright?”
“She’s been like it all morning…headache maybe?”
“Or it’s her time of the month” Inés replied, “keep an eye on her. If you think she should be home you tell her and drive her home”.
“She won’t listen to me”.
“She’d listen to you more than me” Inés replied, “now get out of my office. I have work to do”.
Max looked at Miranda waiting by his car. She had sat by his car, head resting on her knees. He assumed she would be cursing about having left her sunglasses in the office.
But she was silent.
“You want some chocolate?” he asked.
Miranda didn’t look up, but he could hear her reply, “what?”
“Well…don’t most uhm, girls-women want chocolate when it’s their uhm…you know…time of the month?”
Miranda looked up, “you think it’s my time of the month?”
If looks could kill, Max thought he’d be dead and then dead again just to make sure.
“I uhm, just I thought because you-“
“It’s not my time of the month Max” Miranda said and pushed herself up. She got into his car and slumped in the seat again.
“Then what is it? Because Inés has given me full authority to send you home if I think you need to”.
Miranda sighed, “it’s just a migraine okay?”
Max looked at her, “a migraine?”
“Yes…I get them every so often. They bloody kill”.
“You should be at home” he replied softly, handing her his sunglasses.
“You going to send me home?” she replied, looking at him, accepting his sunglasses with an appreciative smile.
“Does the sun hurt you?”
“Then maybe” he replied, “Joan’s might be loud. You want me to take you home so you can go to sleep for a bit?”
Miranda shook her head before touching it, “I’ll be fine”.
Max rolled his eyes, “don’t be a hero. If you need to rest you let me know okay? I told you if you need some help”.
“I know” she whispered, “it’s just a bad headache Max…it’ll pass”.
“The offer still stands about chocolate though. My mother used to get migraines and she swore by dark chocolate”.
Miranda shrugged, “if you think it’ll help I’m open to anything”.
Max smiled, “okay then” he turned the car on, “you can sleep if you want. I’ll drive safe-r than normal”.
“Thanks” she whispered and put his sunglasses on. Despite her eyes now being covered, he knew her eyes were shut.
Max pulled up outside his apartment. With Joan’s bar being close to his apartment he thought it best to leave his car at home, that way he could have a beer as he worked without fear of Miranda telling him off about drinking and driving.
“Max?” she stirred.
“You want to stay sleeping?”
“My head hurts” she whispered, “feel like it’s gotten worse now”.
Max nodded, “I have some chocolate…you think you can walk?”
Miranda nodded, “can’t promise I'll be much help…”
Max nodded, “come on then”.
She got out of the car and Max moved to her side.
“I’m not an invalid Max” she replied but leaned against him.
“Keep your eyes shut. Do you want me to help you up the stairs?”
“Joan doesn’t have stairs?”
“No but my apartment has some”.
“What?” Miranda looked at him, and he smiled gently, “it’s dark…it’s quiet…just sleep?”
Miranda leaned into his touch, “fine” she whispered, “fine”.
He slipped his arms around her waist, letting him support her as her body began to tire. Miranda sighed, “Max” she groaned as he quickly lifted her into his arms.
“I’m being a good friend” he stated, “besides you’re light…and you clearly need some help”.
Miranda let him carry her up into his apartment and as he lay her on his bed she felt the pain in her head lessen.
He shut the blinds and gently pulled the sunglasses from her. Her eyes squinted shut quickly, her body curled into a ball.
“I’ll get the chocolate. Joan can wait”.
“Max” Miranda whispered, her eyes opening slowly, “thank you” she whispered softly and he smiled.
“Get some sleep Miranda” he ordered, “and get into the covers…beds are far more comfy when you get into them”.
When Miranda didn’t move he gently eased the covers over her, tucking her into his bed. He smiled and brushed her hair back.
Miranda awoke in darkness, in a strange room. She rubbed her head and found her migraine had all but gone. She looked at her watch and the time flashed 06:30.
She had slept longer than normal. Her body perhaps greedily accepting sleep where she so often denied it.
She sat up and saw a glass of water and some chocolate were on the side, left for her. Sipping the water and having some of the chocolate she looked around. She was in Max’s bed that much was sure. Where Max was, she didn’t know.
“Max?” she called out, "Max?"
“Hey” he smiled from the doorway, “feeling better?”
She nodded, “I am…you uhm, thank you for looking after me”.
He smiled and held up a mug, “you want a coffee?”
She nodded, “please”.
He approached her and sat on the bed beside her, “so...how often do you get migraines?”
“Every couple of months” she replied, letting her head rest on his shoulder. Miranda was letting her guard down more and more around him and she was yet to decide if she liked having this giant goofball knowing her so well.
“Please tell me next time if you need help?”
Miranda nodded, “okay…thanks”.
He smiled and gently wrapped an arm around her waist, “I know you don’t go for the close and personal but you’ve got a friend in me. Even if you just want a night to relax and take time out”.
She looked at him.
He smiled and held his hand out to her, “compañeros?”
“Compañeros” she agreed and held his hand.
The two sat in companionable silence as Mallorca came to life outside, content in one another’s company.
A few days later, Miranda appeared at his door with a bottle of wine and some takeaway.
“What’s this?” he asked with a gentle smile. He’d learnt that Miranda could be scared off with too much of his shows of emotions.
“It’s to partly say thank you for looking after me the other day…and to say thank you for saving my life today. I thought she was going to kill me”.
“You seemed to handle yourself though”.
“She had quiet a lock on me” she replied and shrugged, “still…uhm Carmen told me you like paella? And that there was this little place down just before the Arenal”.
Max grinned, “I do”.
“Soo…if you’ve got glasses and plates?”
Max nodded and led her through to his living area. He grabbed plates and glasses and looked at her.
“I’m sorry for saying you’re not so perfect”.
“You were right…i-I get lost in my head and I do things so precisely that I lose track and sight of everything…not a single person in my old division has contacted me…whereas you didn’t stop pestering me about a migraine…you cared. Nobody has ever cared about me that much”.
She nodded, “really”.
“Then maybe we should make this a thing…every Thursday?”
Miranda quirked her eyebrow, “you’d want to do this again?”
“Sure!” he laughed, “Miranda I like being with you. Sure you are uptight but you are brilliant”.
“I think that was a compliment” Miranda laughed.
“Sure it was” he smiled, "and besides, this way I can be sure you get at least one good meal in you a week".