Maxxie doesn't like Tony. He doesn't really see how anyone can like Tony, or trust him to do anything more than fuck around with people. But just because he dislikes, even maybe hates, Tony Stonem doesn't mean he isn't drawn to him. Like many sociopaths throughout history, Tony has incredible charisma, and makes things interesting. Interesting in a way that makes everyone hate each other and get suicidal, sure, but interesting just the same.
Maxxie doesn't know why he gave into Tony for as long as he did, back in Moshkov. Well, maybe he does – when he's drunk it takes a few seconds for his brain to kick in and override his dick. But he can't completely blame the vodka or his libido, because as much as he hates Tony, he thinks he loves him too. When this happened, he can't say, because he doesn't know. Until Russia, he wasn't even aware of it. But then Tony kissed him, even though it was just because he could, and he hates him for that, and he hates him for fucking around, but he loves him for some reason he doesn't even know. No one knows why they love him, because it's against everything sensible in the world, and he's an arrogant fucking wanker, but Michelle loves him, and Sid loves him, and Chris loves him, but Chris sort of loves everyone because he's always fucking high or stoned or both. Jal and Cassie don't love him, though, and he wonders what their secret is. And Anwar – he doesn't think about Anwar.
Maxxie doesn't like Tony. He may love him, but he doesn't like him, because Tony is a complete fucking wanker and he's not really into that. Tony fucks with everyone until his pretty little face is bruised and cut up, and he still doesn't learn, and Cassie's nearly killed herself, and Sid's grown a backbone (which isn't actually a bad thing), and Michelle is constantly torn between tears and rage, and Chris – well, Chris actually isn't too affected, because there isn't much Tony can do to make him more fucked up. And then Anwar gets over himself, Sid says that Tony's grown something resembling a conscience, maybe, and he tells himself that things are going to be better now.
Maxxie doesn't hear the screech the bus makes as it desperately tries to stop, he doesn't hear Effy's screams and crying, he doesn't see Tony's mangled and bloody body. He does see the flashing lights of the ambulance when he steps out of the party just a second, for some air. His heart stops because he knows, he knows that Tony is somewhere in there, because that's how things work here, how they've always worked. Of course Sid's dealer would be the supply teacher; of course Anwar would randomly decide that gay was wrong right when he needed a friend; of course Tony is going to be hurt (not dead not dead not dead) right when things start going right.
Maxxie doesn't visit Tony in the hospital. He can't. He hates him, but he loves him, and Tony isn't Tony when he's lying comatose in a bed, wrapped in gauze and bruised more than he'd ever been from their punches. And he can't face everyone crying over Tony, because Tony's a wanker, and he can't face himself crying over Tony, because Tony's such a fucking wanker, and they should be glad for the break from all the manipulation, but Tony's in a coma, and Chris is all fucked up over Angie acting like a teacher for once in her life, and Michelle's fucked up over Tony because evidentially he loves her, and he's just sick of it all and there haven't been any parties, not real parties, so he's been sober for longer than he's been since he turned thirteen, and it's too fucking much.
Maxxie doesn't show up when Tony's released from the hospital, because he may be in love with Tony, but that doesn't have to mean anything. By the time Tony's back at college, he's nearly got himself convinced that things will go back to normal, that Sid'll do Tony's every command, and Tony will be their lord and ruler and manipulator, and Michelle will follow him around just waiting to be fucked over, and Jal will try to keep things from getting all fucked up (and it'll never work), and him and Anwar and Chris and Kenneth will mostly keep out of it. But then Tony actually shows up, and he's withdrawn and still limps from the accident and Sid tells him that Tony's not with Michelle anymore and Tony's actually keeping his nose out of everyone's business for the first time in his whole fucking life, and he's really not a wanker anymore, and now he doesn't have a reason not to be in love with Tony (not that he stopped when he had a reason, but he could ignore it), because Tony's actually sort of decent now.
Maxxie doesn't go over to Tony's house after class on Wednesday, he doesn't walk up to the door, he doesn't ring the doorbell, he doesn't trade meaningless pleasantries with Mrs. Stonem, he doesn't notice Effy's knowing look (and he definitely doesn't completely ignore it, because he wasn't there to see it in the first place), he doesn't walk up to Tony's room where he doesn't stand with his mouth dry and his hands sweaty, he doesn't open Tony's door. And he doesn't try to say something to Tony and his words don't get stuck in his throat, and he doesn't swallow nervously, and he doesn't end up kissing Tony desperately. He doesn't let Tony know how scared he was, because he wasn't scared, because Tony's a wanker, and he may be in love with him but that doesn't mean anything, and he doesn't act on it, and he doesn't kiss Tony.
But this time, he does.