Title: I Want You To Need Me
Author: Mary (SlayerKnight2@aol.com)
Pairing / Main characters: Riddick/Johns
Summary: First-Time, AU. Johns is looking for Riddick once again, only this time, he has some unwanted company. Riddick is forced to realize that the seemingly cold-hearted Johns needs his help before it's too late.
Disclaimer: Johns, Riddick, and everyone else from PB belong to David Twony or, however you spell his name. They are not mine! That character of Max Dallas is mine, though.
Archive/Distribution: Yes, to CKoS, and any other place that wants it, feel free to give me an ego boost and post it there.
Warning: First-Time, AU, domestic abuse, extreme violence, m/m, Spoilers for the movie.
Notes: This takes place before PB, probably be an AU eventually. Johns captured Riddick once and now he's escaped. Johns is in the process of finding him again. This is will be an ongoing series. Not sure exactly where I want to take it but any requests or feedback is great. If anything seems a little off, write me, and I'll fix it.
Dedicated: To Paula. You know who you are and I just had to slash this M*A*N* one more time for you.
I Want You To Need Me 1
He should have left.
Riddick stared at Johns from across the dimly lit bar. The younger man was not aware of his presence yet and Riddick should have left the moment he spotted the mercenary that was hunting him. Hell, he'd even backed up towards the door.
But something in Johns' face had stopped him.
Desolation. Loneliness. Pain.
They were all deeply etched in the handsome face that was hung between the strong shoulders. His shoulders were slumped and his head rested on his folded forearms as he eyes stared off sadly into space.
Riddick shook his head from where he sat in the back of the bar. It gave him a good view of Johns' face. His expression and his body language made him look pathetic. Made him look broken.
Curiosity whirled around in the serial killer's mind as he eyed his current prey. This was not the loudmouthed, smart-ass merc who had captured him and sent him back to the Slam. He was attracted to Johns. Not just because of his physical beauty, which was lacking nothing. A strong jaw, smooth skin, and the brightest blue eyes that Riddick had ever seen. He could always tell what the young merc was thinking just by the look in his eyes.
But something in Johns' personality drew Riddick to him. The younger man had such fire in him, such spirit. Yeah, Riddick admired him. The merc was the only one who had the balls to go after him, not only once but twice.
As Riddick's silver eyes focused on Johns again he realized that the spirit was gone. And his curiosity made him stay. Dozens of serial killer, rapists, and child molesters hadn't broken the young man. What had?
Well, he wasn't going to get answers from where he sat. If the merc still had enough gusto in him to chain Riddick up again, then he would escape later. Curiosity kills the cat. Well, not knowing would eat away at him. Johns' and his lives had been intertwined for too long now for something this drastic to happen.
He got up from his booth and stalked his prey. He took a seat across to the merc in the booth at the back of the bar. It was a darkened corner, so he took off his goggles.
Silence passed between them for long moments.
Riddick cocked his head to the side slightly, as if to inquire what Johns was thinking.
Johns sighed but didn't move. "I'm not drunk enough for this."
Riddick snorted at the comment. "You gonna 'cuff me now?"
Johns remained silent. Riddick slid over to where Johns was sitting. He took out his shiv and pressed it against the other man's side, not hard enough to pierce but enough to let Johns know he was in deep shit. No one could see the knife and from the looks of the people who came to this dive, they wouldn't have come running over to help a nun. At first, Riddick had been curious, now he was second-guessing himself. Not something he liked doing. He wasn't going back to Slam.
Johns didn't move. He felt the serial killer's knife and his hot breath on his neck.
But he didn't care. "Then do it."
Riddick stared at him, surprised. He pulled his arm back and moved away a few inches from the man, so that he could look into his face. Such sadness. The bruises on his face, the cuts. Must have been one hell of a fight with his last bounty. He leaned against the back of the booth. "What the fuck happened to you?" It was a whisper, bland yet it cut through the bullshit.
Johns snorted. He took a long gulp of his beer, which had become stale as he had sat there daydreaming, thinking about Max. "I went to church." He glanced at Riddick and found the stoic mask unnerving. He shrugged. "I got into a fight."
Anger started to bubble up in Johns. He needed an outlet for all the painful emotions whirling around in him, all the helplessness. "Why you want to know?"
Riddick noticed the tone but ignored it. "So I can thank him."
Before Johns could reply with a nasty comment, a voice called out, "Thought I'd find you here."
Riddick watched as a man in his early forties walked over to them. He had dark hair that was streaked with silver and black eyes. His presence radiated anger and violence. Riddick's instincts kicked up and his muscles were filled with adrenaline, ready for a fight.
The newcomer's gaze went from Johns, to Riddick, and then back to Johns. "Who's your friend, Will?"
Only then did Riddick notice that all of the anger had left Johns and deep-rooted fear had taken its place. Riddick could smell the other's fear, it was so tangible. He also noticed how tense the young merc was.
Johns stared at his bottle of beer. "He's no one, Max. Really."
The malevolence in the man increased with each sentence. "No one, huh? Well, while you're sitting in this dump, flirting with 'no one' Riddick's out there, running."
Riddick assumed that this guy, Max, was Johns' partner and probably a merc as well. He wondered why Johns didn't tell him about the convict sitting right next to him. It wasn't surprising that Max didn't know what he looked like. Johns knew his face anywhere and didn't carry a photo ID.
Johns glanced at Riddick, then looked back at his beer. "Yeah, just thought I'd take a break."
Max must have caught the glance. He put a hand on Johns' right shoulder, squeezing painfully. Anger laced his words as he ground them out. "Well, 'break's' over, Will."
Riddick saw Johns wince in pain as the knuckles on the hand turned white with pressure. He heard the pain and defeat in Johns' whisper. "Please, Max." The other man tightened his fist, pressing his fingers into Johns' pressure point. The young man gasped in pain but didn't move.
Riddick's muscles tightened in anger, the source of which he didn't want to acknowledge at the moment. "Stop," he growled. The one simple word a thinly veiled threat of impeccable violence.
For the first time all evening, the other man looked a little afraid. Johns looked at the serial killer in shock. Max released his shoulder but pulled Johns by the upper arm. "Let's go, Will." It was obvious that the guy wasn't used to being afraid and he didn't like it.
Riddick watched, amazed, as Johns docilely followed Max out of the restaurant. This was interesting. And this wasn't Johns. He got up and followed Johns and the malevolent man that was connected to him.
Johns winced as Max slammed the door shut. He knew that his lover was possessive - and angry. Two things that were a dangerous combination. He heard Max drop the keys down onto the wooden coffee table by the door. The loud clatter made him jump. Silence followed. Johns stared at the white wall, feeling his lover's glare against his back.
"You know, Will, if you want to fuck him, just tell me."
Johns snorted, again. Of course he wanted to fuck Riddick. The man was like a panther, powerful muscles that glided beneath the surface of olive skin. Silver eyes that pierced a soul and a voice that sent shivers up his spine. But, he wasn't stupid enough to say it aloud to his current lover. "Don't be stupid, Max."
It was the wrong thing to say. Max flew at him. He grabbed Johns by the hair and slammed him up against the very wall he had been staring at. He grunted as the wind was forced out of him. Max punched him twice in his kidneys and grabbing his hair, slamming his head hard against the wall.
Stars swam in Johns' eyes as physical pains replaced emotional ones. In a way, he welcomed the replacement. The physical pain was real, he could touch it and feel it fade. The emotional ones never faded, just ate away at him like molecular acid, seeping into his nightmares. It was rather amusing, actually. He had beaten the shit out of numerous convicts who had looked at him the wrong way. But with Max and his short temper, he just took it. He loved Max. He knew he didn't deserve the beatings, but he put up with them because when the bruises faded and the cuts coagulated, Max would kiss the pains away and he would never feel happier.
He was thrown to the floor and Max straddled his hips. He punched Johns' face repeatedly, causing blood to flow and bruises to rise to the surface. And the younger merc took it with quiet gasps of pain and whimpering noises.
After a few minutes, Max stopped. His black eyes glinted in the florescent light as he smiled suddenly. He leaned down and gently kissed Johns. The young merc couldn't help it; he tensed at the contact and tried to get away. Max, angry that his lover wasn't completely subservient, bit down on his lower lip, drawing blood. Johns cried out and struggled out from beneath the man.
Max laughed, cruelly. "You'll just take it, won't you?" When he got no response, his laughter faded. "You'll never leave me, will you?"
Johns tried to get his breath back, as his hand swept over his face. He looked at his hand - it was covered in blood. Pain and dizziness swept over him, as the beating mixed in with the alcohol, caused his body to cave in on itself. He needed fresh air to keep him from passing out. Johns stumbled out of the apartment and walked down the three flights of stairs to the ground level, where he collapsed on the stoop.
Max had let him go. "No. You'll never leave me," he whispered, softly. But no one was in the apartment.
Johns buried his face in his hands, wincing as his fingers pressed up against reopened wounds as well as new ones. A familiar feeling. He tried not to remember the times when Max had been so nice to him. His father had beaten him, too. He was a mean drunk but a sad man when he was sober. He would beat Johns when he was drunk and then apologize sincerely when the alcohol had fled his system. Right up until the day he shot his mother with a .45 and then turned the weapon on himself.
That was what Johns knew.
Love begets violence and vice-versa. Max was the first man that he'd ever been with and had not been violent at the beginning. No, he wouldn't leave. He had nothing else but Max and morphine. His throat contracted. The tears of childhood threatened to rise again and the salt stung the open wounds. Suddenly, he felt a hand on the back of his neck. The hand rubbed his neck in a gentle, soothing manner that calmed him immediately. The reassuring touch was such a contrast to the violence he'd just experienced that his chest heaved with quiet sobs.
He kept his head buried in his hands, he didn't want to know who it was, didn't care. His whimpers must have struck something in the other person because the hand changed into an arm around his shoulders, pulling him against a firm chest. Strong, muscular arms tightened around him and he welcomed the comfort. Eyes closed, he nestled into the nook of the stranger's shoulder but did not return the embrace.
A deep voice spoke softly. "How often does he hit you?"
Johns knew he should get away from the cold-hearted serial killer that he was hunting but he didn't move. He was the one that felt cold inside and the warmth of Riddick's skin slowly began to seep into his weary body. "Too often," Johns replied, in an equally quiet tone.
They just stayed like that, sitting on the stoop. A few people passed but few gave them a second look. This was a town for the lost souls and people were numb to human suffering. After about twenty minutes, Johns said. "I have to go back upstairs."
Riddick tightened his arms around him. "No."
Johns didn't move, didn't want to. "He'll get angry again."
"Then come home with me."
The request took the merc by surprise. "Why do you give a damn?"
Riddick rested his chin on the top of Johns' head, his curly blonde hair surprisingly soft. "I don't know." A pause. "But I do."
Go on to Part 2