Title: I Want You To Need Me
Author: Mary (SlayerKnight2@aol.com)
I Want You To Need Me 2
Johns followed Riddick numbly as they boarded the subway. It was late by now, probably around one in the morning. Very few people were on the subway car. Aching from his injuries, Johns collapsed onto one of the empty seats. He saw the serial killer grab the bar next to him, giving Johns some space.
He sighed and surveyed the subway car in hopes that if he concentrated on the present he couldn't remember the past or worry about the future. It was an old car, benches were wood with cheap plastic seats and metal bars for when rush hour came each day. But now, it was like a ghost town.
A homeless man that was sleeping on a bench near the end of the car. His dark skin looked dried out from the cold weather that had permeated the city during the past few days. He was older, probably around sixty. Johns wondered what his story was. Did he grow up on the streets or did he run away from home? Did his daddy hit him or mommy rape him? Did he have a family somewhere? Did they worry about him? Did he care? The only other person was a brunette in her early forties who sat a couple benches down, her legs crossed and her orange purse in her lap. Her cheap furcoat and black fishnet stockings completed her look. Her face was drawn and aged before its time, despite the devil-red lipstick she wore. She glanced over at him, staring for a few minutes before getting up and walking over to where he was. She sat down next to him, her eyes glued on Riddick. Her hair went down to the middle of her back and Johns could smell the sharp scent of the peroxide she had used to dye it blonde. He didn't look at her, choosing to stare out the windows on the opposite side of the car. A few months ago, he would have leapt at the chance for sex from her but now she merely annoyed him.
Even Riddick was annoying him but he wanted the serial killer to stay with him. He wasn't quite sure why the presence of a man who had killed several people suddenly was a soothing balm to his jittery nerves and nightmarish memories. Maybe it's because he's just as fucked up as you are, he thought to himself.
"You okay, Hun?"
Johns looked at her, startled. "Uh, yeah." He was suddenly and painfully reminded of the cuts and bruises on his face. He must look like hell three times over.
She must have caught the embarrassment in his voice. "Don't worry about it, kiddo. I've seen much worse. You get into a fight with a girlfriend?"
She laughed. "If it was a fight with a stranger, you wouldn't have that 'my-puppy-just-died' look on your face."
Johns sighed. He wasn't in the mood for this. He glanced up at Riddick, who was watching their conversation impassively. "Not a girlfriend."
He looked at her.
She nodded, her dark brown eyes filled with sympathy. "A boyfriend." She looked up at Riddick, eyeing him warily.
Johns caught her look and turned to stare at the floor. "He didn't do it."
The woman nodded, her gaze settling back on Johns. She started rifling through her bag. "You want a cigarette?"
"I don't smoke," Johns snorted.
"Yeah, neither do I," she said as she pulled out a joint.
Johns was acutely aware of Riddick's stare. "Look, could you wait until I got off?"
The woman stopped but didn't put it away. "You don't look like a goody two-shoes. I can smell the beer on you."
"I'm not." He replied. "I'm... I've just had enough bad habits for tonight."
She decided to take pity on him. "Okay, Hun. Seeing how it's the only thing I can do for you." She looked back up at Riddick. "What about you? You want a good time?"
Riddick shook his head.
Johns bristled. "You don't have to miss out on my account. I can go and get a drink and wait."
Riddick's goggled-eyes stared hard at him. He felt sorry for Johns' situation but he still didn't like him much. "You've had enough to drink."
"What are you, my mother?" Johns' reckless nature was taking hold again.
Well, Riddick thought, at least he's getting back to being his old self again. "No, but I'm the only one you got right now."
The truth of the words hit home. The anger seeped out of Johns, letting in the exhaustion. "That's depressing," he replied dryly, closing his eyes and leaning his head back against the cold metal of the subway car.
Riddick, satisfied that he'd gotten his point across, said quietly, "The truth usually is."
The woman looked at Riddick. "So, what about it?"
The serial killer shook his head. "You're not my type."
She caught the glance he shot the blonde man, whose eyes were closed." Not your type? Is it 'cause I'm a hooker or a woman?"
Johns kept his eyes closed, unmoving. He was rather interested in the answer himself.
However, Riddick didn't answer. He just smiled at the woman.
She didn't take offense. "Okay. You take care of the kid. He looks like he needs someone."
The subway came to a stop and Riddick put a hand on Johns' shoulder to signal to him that this was his stop. The merc looked up at him, tiredly. Riddick rubbed his shoulder before stepping out of the car. He walked through the cold tunnels to walk up the stairs that led onto the streets. He was acutely aware of Johns following him a few steps behind, lost in his own thoughts. Riddick could help heal the cuts and bruises but there were some pains that he couldn't. He would try but there was little he could do. Johns didn't have to face the demons alone, but they were his demons. They would be there forever.
He reached his motel room and got into the elevator, followed by Johns. They stood in silence as the metal box lifted them up the seven stories to the serial killer's current home. He'd only been there for a few days. It was a dump but no one asked questions and *no one* called the cops. It was a place for those who didn't want to be found.
They walked down the hallways, which were unnaturally silent. The halls were empty but most of the rooms were filled. It literally smelled of suffering. The walls were a dirtied brown and rust clung to the edges of the pipes above. They stopped before a room and Riddick used his keys to open the door.
It creaked open and Riddick walked inside first. As soon as Johns was inside, he locked the door.
The lights were off. Riddick was used to staying in the dark. The light from a streetlamp cast a slight illumination into the room. He moved to turn he lights on for his guest, who wasn't gifted with his special sight.
Johns shook his head. "Don't."
His hand froze. "You can see in the dark?" The bite of sarcasm was a little sharper than he'd intended.
The blonde-haired man walked over to the window to look down into the street below. "No. It just feels safer."
Riddick granted the request and stood where he was, by the door, watching Johns' face as the merc watched an unseen show below. You can't hide from your demons in the dark, Johns, he thought.
The merc didn't look up. "You have a lot of balls to bringing me here." The serial killer leaned against the wall by the door, as he took off his goggles. Johns turned to look at him. "We've been trying to 'x' each other out for years. Why are you helping me now?"
Riddick shrugged. "Takes two to play the game."
Johns didn't buy it. "What else?"
The serial killer paused, images of Kyle and Zach flashing before his eyes. The ten-year-old boys crying. Screams. Whimpers. Silence. Riddick walked away from the wall, trying to banish the thoughts from his mind. "You better sit down before you fall down."
He was aware of Johns' eyes on his back and knew that the merc had caught something. Ignoring the stare, he grabbed a bottle of pills and a glass of water from the tiny kitchen off to the side. He walked out to find Johns sitting on the couch, staring at the blank television. He sat down on the opposite end of the black couch. It was surprisingly comfortable.
"It's more interesting if you turn it on."
Johns seemed to snap out of whatever reverie he was in. He turned to look at Riddick who handed him the bottle of pills and water. At his guest's inquisitive look, he replied nonchalantly. "Aspirin. You're head's gotta hurt."
Johns nodded and silently drank the pills down with a sip of water. The killer took the glass from him and set it down on the table. "What are you, serial killer turned nursemaid?"
Riddick decided to ignore the comment. Neither of them had the energy for a fight, verbal or physical, right now. He tossed the remote to Johns. He didn't watch much television so he had no idea what was good to watch. Both realized that it would be a good distraction.
Johns skimmed through a few late-night talk shows that drabbled on and toyed with the idea of letting it stay on an infomercial, just to see how long Riddick would watch it. Instead he left the channel on Ricki Lake. He bit the inside of his cheek to keep from laughing as Riddick turned to look at him.
He shrugged. "It shows you that someone else's life is more fucked-up than yours."
Riddick snorted in laughter as spouses argued over infidelities. After the show was over, he glanced at Johns. The merc was asleep, leaning against the arm of the couch. He hadn't told Johns that the so-called 'aspirin' pills were actually sleeping pills. He didn't want the bounty hunter getting any ideas about bringing him in.
He turned the television off and pulled Johns from the hunched over position to lie down on the sofa. The merc shifted but was out-cold. He debated whether or not to just to leave him like that in the cold apartment. Sighing, he went and got a spare blanket from the closet and pulled it over him. He stopped to watch him sleep for a moment. Damn, the asshole looked young. Riddick wondered how old he really was. He was going to have to go see Squeaky tomorrow to book passage on a couple of transports. He wanted to be ready to leave in a minutes notice as soon as Johns got the idea back to bring him in.
Go back to Part 1
Go on to Part 3