Traumatic by Onyx-and-Moonstone

Category:Maximum Ride
Published:2006-12-27 22:31:07
Updated:2006-12-27 22:31:07
Packaged:2021-04-21 23:51:15
Summary:Just a oneshot about how the isolation tank effected Max. Read it, come on...oh and review.




His dark chocolate brown eyes snapped open. Something had hit his back, hard. There was a rhythmic thrashing going on behind him on the forest floor. Before the dark haired boy could turn around from his position, she kicked him in the calf.

This happened a lot, actually. Sometimes he woke up to bruises, all thanks to a miss Maximum Ride. Other times, he would just end up with red welts on his chest or back. Really, it depended on which position he had slept in that night.

He knew what it was. This happened most every night. Sometimes, in the morning, she wouldn't wake up. She wouldn't move and she barely breathed. Angel would have to get in her head and coax Max into consciousness.

In the daytime, she was the same Max they'd grown up with. The leader. The brave, confident, motherly bird girl. At night, she was so different. She whimpered, screamed, thrashed, kicked, punched; she did everything but sleep peacefully.

Some nights, she was calm; serene even. Those were her Voice's doing. It said it tried hard to filter out Max's haunting memories, but most of the time, they were just too strong. Quiet nights, were a blessing.

It was an unspoken rule in the flock: never talk about her nightmares during the day. After the first few weeks, the flock just quit asking questions. It was a routine; wake up, eat, pack up, fly, fight when necessary, land somewhere far away, eat again, sleep, and dream unforgiving dreams.

Sleep, had a routine too. Max always took first watch. She was afraid to go to sleep. Afraid of what sleep might bring. She didn't tell her flock though. She said it was the leader's job. At least that's what she tried to make herself believe. Fang always took the second shift. And Iggy always took third. Three hour shifts, every night.

After that night when Fang and Max had shared those last warm cokes, after her time at Itex, that was when the nightmares began.

That night, she had the first nightmare in the unending series of nightmares. After her watch, she'd gone into the cave to lay down by herself. It took her awhile, but she fell asleep. Fang had insisted upon it. It wasn't too long after sleep took her that she began to toss about.

He was worried about her. He whispered her name from across the cave, but she continued to squirm. He went to sit next to her, to calm her down. Her arms and legs were flailing. His hand reached out to grab on of her flying ones. She woke up instantly, ready to fend off an attacker. Seeing Fang, she relaxed, quite noticeably. He moved to disentangle their hands, but she held his in hers firmly. Strangely, he was very okay with that.

"Stay with me," she whispered, not daring to look in is eyes. The flock slept, unperturbed.

He nodded silently.

So that's how it was. Max slept next to Fang that night, and every night since then. She felt better when she could see his face before she slept. She felt even better when she saw his face first thing in the morning. He made her feel safe at night, if even just from her dreams.

As he turned around, another fist came his way. Reaching out his hand with remarkable speed, he caught her fist as it threatened to collide with his jaw.

Max gasped and woke up. Seeing her fist in his hand, she muttered a quick 'sorry'. He merely looked at her, pity in his normally placid eyes. He released her hand.

"The same as the rest?" he asked, already fully aware of the answer.

She nodded and shifted so she was laying on her side, facing Fang. He could see a tear escape her eye and glitter down her face. He wiped it away with his thumb.

"I just want them to stop," she whispered.

"I hate seeing you like this," he whispered back. "I wish there was something I could do."

She bit her bottom lip. "Maybe there is," she said, almost inaudibly. But Fang hears everything. Without caring about the consequences, Max closed the gap between their faces. Her lips met his and she kissed him.

His eyes widened with shock, like the time on the beach. But this time, he kissed back. It wasn't a long kiss, but it was enough for Max to forget her nightmares.

Maybe Fang has a special gift after all.