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3x13 Missing Scene

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Alex would deny it if anyone asked, but he jumped when the door to his lab slammed open. The lights had been flickering for a few moments and he looked up, expecting to see Jones entering. Instead, he saw Michael, the person who’d been occupying every corner of his brain since Alex found out he was missing.

“Guerin!” Alex said as he started to rush towards the man. Michael held up his hand to fend him off, Alex saw that it was tinged with blood. Alex froze and scanned Michael, he was dirty and looked exhausted. Alex couldn't see a visible wound, but Michael was definitely hurt. Alex had seen soldiers and airmen who were injured and fighting through the pain, he knew what it looked like. Hell, he’d seen it in the mirror. Michael was holding himself rigid and his movements were slower than usual. He took a few more steps towards Alex and he was missing his signature cowboy swagger.

“Alex, I know, I’m okay,” Michael started but Alex cut him off.

“You’re obviously not.”

“Maybe not,” Michael said with a shrug and couldn’t hide the wince, Alex stepped closer, drawn in by worry. “Look, I don’t have time to explain fully. Jones is on his way here. He...he got inside my head. I held him off for as long as I could but…” Michael cut himself off with a shake of his head. Alex’s stomach twisted in knots thinking of what Jones might’ve done to break down Michael’s defenses. “He wants the serum and the Lockhart Machine. He knows you have it and what you mean to me, so I need you to let me take it to him.”

“What? No, Michael, absolutely not,” Alex didn’t want Michael anywhere near Jones and he knew they couldn’t just give in to his demands.

“I can’t...he’s too strong. We can’t stop him, not right now. Not here. I need you to trust me,” Michael said desperately. The lights flickered again and he stepped forward with a pleading look in his eyes. “Alex please.”

“Okay,” Alex grabbed the machine and started towards the door. “Let’s go.”

“No,” Michael practically growled. Alex froze, surprised by his tone. Michael took advantage of his surprise and used his powers to tear the Lockhart Machine from Alex’s grasp.

“Guerin, I am not letting you go alone,” Alex said. Not when he’d just gotten him back. Not when Michael was obviously still hurting from his last round with Jones.

“Jones was in my head,” Michael repeated desperately. “He knows how much you mean to me, I can't risk him using you to get to me, and I can’t be distracted with worrying about your safety. And I will. If you are in that room all I will be focusing on is you,” Michael said. It would’ve been a sweet sentiment if they weren’t facing a homicidal dictator. Alex paused to think for a moment, it was hard to admit, but he knew he wouldn’t be much use against Jones. Bullets certainly wouldn’t work against a telepath. The best way to help Michael would be to use his knowledge of the Lockhart Machine. Maybe he could figure out why Jones wanted it or if there was a way to track Jones when he had it.

“Okay,” Alex backed down. He closed the remaining distance between them and gave Michael a quick kiss.

“Promise me you’ll stay here,” Michael whispered.

“I promise,” Alex said. Michael gave him a small smile and then he was gone.

Alex tried to go back to his notes on the Lockhart Machine, but he couldn’t even fool himself into pretending to work knowing Michael and the others were in danger.

“Dammit,” He swore in frustration. If Alex hated feeling anything in this world, it was helpless. He grabbed his gun and started walking towards the door, but he stopped a couple of feet away. He’d promised Michael he’d stay, plus he didn’t want to be the reason Michael lost concentration or control over his powers. Alex stalked back to his worktable and pulled out his laptop, easily hacking into the security footage. He’d have a talk with Eduardo about boosting their security later.

The image quality was bad, but the scene that popped up on the screen was worse. Kyle, Eduardo, and Heath were suspended in the air outside of the now open windows of the lab. Michael was on his knees behind Jones and Liz...Liz appeared to be injecting Jones with the serum.

“No,” Alex whispered. He watched as Jones stepped triumphantly back, and the three humans hanging outside of the window dropped. The Aliens all surged forward, each catching one human with their powers, but they seemed to be struggling. Michael most of all, which sent a shiver down Alex’s spine.

Jones was gone now, and Alex couldn’t stay away any longer. He took off at a sprint, opting for the side stairs which were slightly farther away but guaranteed he wouldn’t run into Jones.

When Alex arrived at the lab, everyone was safe and on solid ground. They all were collapsed and breathing heavily. No one was moving from the spot they had fallen, they all looked like they were in shock and trying to process all that had happened. Alex’s eyes went immediately to Michael, who was slumped on the ground. Isobel was next to him, one of her arms was around a wide-eyed Kyle, and the other was resting on Michael's leg. His eyes were half-closed and his hand was clutching his side. Alex saw blood leaking through his fingers.

“Guerin!” He yelled and rushed to his side. Alex’s cry broke the rest of them out of their stupor.

“Oh my god, Michael,” Isobel whispered and moved closer to Michael’s other side.

“I’m okay,” Michael said weakly, but he wasn’t convincing anyone. He had his eyes closed and was leaning heavily against Alex and he was pretty sure that Michael would collapse if he moved. Alex pushed back some of Michael’s unruly curls and cupped his face.

“Guerin, open your eyes,” Alex said and was glad when Michael actually listened to him for once. His soft brown eyes looked at Alex and Alex felt the pain he saw in them as a physical blow. Isobel pushed up Michael’s t-shirt to reveal a nasty gaping wound.

“Michael, did Jones stab you with his sword?” Isobel asked sharply, apparently recognize the pattern of the wound. Max and Kyle moved closer to inspect his injury. Michael declined to answer his sister, his eyes drifting closed and his head getting heavier in Alex’s hold. Alex tried to remain calm as Michael passed out. He looked up at Max, who was moving closer to heal him.

“Hold on, Michael,” Max said, his hand outstretched towards his brother.

“Wait,” Kyle said loudly. He stood up and walked over to one of the tables.

“Kyle, what?” Isobel said, panic clear in her voice. Kyle came back with his phone and turned the light on, shining it at Michael’s side.

“Goddammit, Guerin,” Kyle swore.

“Valenti, what is going on?” Alex said, knowing his tone was harsh, but not being able to help it.

“I’m pretty sure this idiot stapled the wound shut. We need to get those pieces out before Max can heal him,” Kyle said. “Lay him down, I’ll go get my tools.”

“I can do it,” Isobel said quickly. Alex moved to sit against the wall and they lowered Michael into a laying position, his head on Alex’s thigh. Alex ran his hand constantly through Michael’s curls, knowing he was probably soothing himself more than Michael at this point.

“Okay, carefully, one at a time. Pull them as straight out as you can,” Kyle instructed. Michael didn’t react at all as Isobel carefully pulled out the staples with her mind. Alex tried not to think of Michael alone, bleeding out, and stapling his own freaking side closed.

“Okay, got them all,” Isobel said. Max didn’t waste any time in healing Michael. He put his hand over the wound and his hand began to glow. Max shouted and the lightbulbs overhead burst. Max practically fell backward. Liz rushed forward and handed him a garbage bin for him to throw up in.

Alex focused his attention on Michael. There was still a lot of blood covering his side and soaking the floor underneath him, but the place where the wound had been was now just skin.

“Why isn’t he waking up?” Alex asked, stroking Michael’s cheek. Somewhere in the back of his brain, he thought that it was refreshing that he didn’t have to worry about openly touching Michael like that.

“Sometimes it takes a little while after a major healing,” Isobel answered for Max who was currently chugging some acetone.

Satisfied that Michael was going to be okay, the crowd started to disperse. Max and Liz moved a few feet away and embraced. Kyle and Heath went to check on Dallas. Eduardo squeezed Alex on the shoulder and left the lab. Only Isobel stayed with them, sliding next to Michael and taking his hand in both of hers and holding on tightly like she needed to be touching him to convince herself he was okay. Alex felt the same way. He couldn't seem to keep himself from running his hand along the stubble on Michael's jaw or brushing the hair off of his forehead.

“I didn’t feel it,” Iz said softly, looking at Michael’s side.

“What?” Alex’s tired brain had trouble figuring out what she meant.

“We’re connected. I can feel Max and Michael, always. And they can feel me. My connection with Max has always been stronger, but the one with Michael is always still there. They’ve saved me a few times by feeling that I was in trouble,” Isobel said.

“Yeah, he told me about that when we found Caufield,” Alex said. Alex had a flash of memory of another time Michael had been covered in blood. He’d run into his trailer and immediately changed his shirt, insisting the blood wasn’t his. Alex had been talking to Michael when he’d winced and held his head, assaulted by a pain that wasn’t his.

“I should’ve been able to feel that he was in trouble, that he was in pain,” Isobel said, looking at Alex with tears in her eyes. “I should’ve helped him.”

“You were saving Dallas’ life,” Alex reminded her.

“Yes, but I was doing that because I was so sure that if Michael was hurt I’d feel it. That I’d know and be able to find him. What if he had d...what if I was worse? I would've have known.. Why couldn’t I feel it?” Isobel said and Alex just looked at her helplessly, not having any answers for her.

“I think I wasn’t letting you feel it,” The soft voice of Michael Guerin startled them both. They looked down to see Michael’s eyes open slowly. He looked at Iz and then at Alex and gave them both a small smile. Alex was glad to see his eyes were free of the pain that had been in them last time he'd looked at him. Isobel threw herself on his chest, Michael left out a slightly pained exhale but his arms came around her tightly. Isobel finally pulled back and Michael started to struggle to a sitting position.

“Whoa, whoa, easy,” Alex reprimanded, helping Guerin and pulling him so that he was seated in between Alex’s legs, his back against Alex’s chest. Alex wrapped his arms around Michael and could feel his heart beating solidly in his chest. Michael leaned his head against Alex’s shoulder, his curls tickling his neck.

“Alex,” Michael said softly.

“I’m here,” He responded.

Isobel was sitting facing them, she took one of Michael’s hands in hers and ran the other one softly down his cheek.

“I’m okay,” Michael said to them.

“You also said that when you were bleeding out right before you passed out, so forgive us if we need some reassurance,” Max said, sitting on Michael’s other side and handing him a bottle of Acetone. Michael had the decency to look chagrined as he drank the nail polish remover. Max squeezed Michael's shoulder and Michael nodded at his brother. It was one of the many moments between the siblings where Alex was almost certain they were having a conversation inside their heads.

“Michael…” Isobel said hesitantly. “You said you were blocking us?”

“I think it was a byproduct. I was trying to do everything I possibly could to keep Jones out of my mind, but when he stabbed me, I let my defenses drop for a moment. It was enough for him to get all of the information he needed. Even when he was gone, I think my mind was still in survival mode, keeping everyone out. I didn’t-I didn’t do it on purpose Iz,” Michael said, sounding apologetic. Alex leaned his cheek against Michael's hair and held him tighter. He could just barely make out the scent of rain underneath the grease, sweat, and blood.

“It’s okay, it's okay, I’m just sorry you were alone and we didn’t know,” Isobel said, exchanging a forlorn look with Max.

“I wasn’t alone,” Michael said.

“Guerin, who was with you?” Alex questioned.

“Maria found me, she had a vision or something, I think.”

“Ah, so she’s the one we have to thank for that awesome staple job,” Isobel said.

“I made her do it. She fixed me up the best she could and then took Sanders to the hospital,” Michael said, sounding tired and leaning heavily against Alex.

“Is he okay?” Alex was almost afraid to ask.

“I haven’t heard yet, Jones didn’t kill him, and he was awake and snarking Maria when I left, but he was still so weak and his heart…” Michael trailed off, not wanting to finish the sentence. Alex could practically feel him shutting down in his arms, too emotionally and physically exhausted to keep answering questions at the moment. Iz and Max both looked like they wanted to ask Michael more about what happened but Alex spoke up before they could.

“Alright, we need to get some food and water in you and then we can talk some more,” Alex said decisively.

“We need to figure out what we are going to do about Jones,” Michael protested.

“And we will, but give yourself ten minutes to refuel and recharge. You’ll think better that way,” Alex said.

“Manes is right,” Max said.

“Yes, he is,” Isobel agreed, hopping to her feet and holding her hand out to Michael. Her brother gave a sigh but allowed himself to be hauled to his feet. Max got up and held out his hand to Alex. Alex normally would’ve declined, but his leg was starting to ache from overuse.

“Ten minutes,” Michael said to his siblings and then allowed Alex to pull him away.

*****

“You’re staring,” Michael commented, his mouth full of food. He still looked pale and exhausted but he was eating which Alex took to be a good sign.

“You scared the hell out of me,” Alex admitted, he wasn’t sure he’d be fully comfortable letting Michael out of his sight for a long time. Michael looked at him, his brown eyes searching Alex’s face.

“I’m sorry,” Michael said after a few moments.

“You don’t have to apologize, but you will have to deal with me staring more intensely for the next little while,” Alex said. Michael ran his hand self-consciously through his hair, which only succeeded in making it stick up more. Alex chuckled and leaned across the table to smooth it down. “You’re alive and that’s the most beautiful thing I’ve seen in a while, so forgive me if I can’t look away.”

“Well, it’s a good thing neither of us ever look away,” Michael said simply and Alex felt a bit of the panic that had been gripping him since Michael disappeared start to fade away.