posted on 6-Jul-2002 11:39:05 AM by babybunny
Title: Marriage of convenience
Author:Babybunny
E-mail: cuteAngelical1⊕boxfrog.com
Rating: undecided- though probably some NC-17
Disclaimer: Don't own them or anything to do with Roswell.
Category: Mainly M/L, CC and AU
Citing: Concept is from fiction called Husband of Convenience by Jacqueline Bairde. So kudos to her. I read this a while back and thought it would be a good idea so I decided to write some fiction by adding own twists and turns in the concept. At the beginning some scenes maybe similar, but it goes on to be different. Plagerism or law breaking not intended!
Theme: AU fic. Including Max and Liz and a marriage. Gah. Just read it.

Oh this my first ever fanfic so please give it a chance and feedback is appreciated.

Parts on pages- 1,4,8,13,20,26,31,36,42,49,54,68,78,90,98,105,109,138.

1-5-2



"I'm sorry Liz, but Andrew is dead"
"But he can’t be dead! . . . I’m pregnant”, Liz was able to notice the hushed gasps and those forsaken- feeling sorry for her looks before everything went black.

It had been two hours since that news had been broken to her, and now she sat in the cushy living room of the Manor house, listening to the bits and pieces of conversation, between her father and Major Evans, though only one thought circled around and around in her head. Andrew is dead…dead…dead..dead.

Isabel Evans shimmied next to her, that undeniable air of grace not going amiss, “how are you feeling?” she gazed at Liz, her eyes showing no hint of emotion.

God your brother has just died, my fiancée! How the fuck am I meant to feel?!, Isabel’s ice cool exterior remained unshattered as she continued to gaze at Liz.

“Fine” Liz gulped the remnants of her drink and Isabel nodded her head, turning away, taking the answer as if it was the only acceptable one to give, of course to the Evans it probably was.

God how did I ever get involved with this family?

“Really?” drawled a male voice, Liz knew who it was before she turned to look at him, that sarcastic overbearing, yet inexpressibly seductive tone could belong to none other then Maxwell Evans.

He stood at the bar, every inch of him reeking with poise, inner power, self assurance, he looked down at her, with an expression that Liz found somewhat hard to read. Hurt? Pain? anger.. or was it pity?

“You don't look to good to me Elizabeth”, that mouth turned into a somewhat mocking smirk and Liz ground her teeth together looking away from him, he was the only person that annoyed her no end, even though she had only met him twice, even her state- the thought of their last meeting made her flush from head to toe. Something she didn’t want to recall, but it was hard when he stood in the same room as her, his presence so undeniably great.

“Oh my...your pregnant?” Liz turned to look at Major Evans, the look of shock still evident on his face; she nodded head then looked at the polished marble floor. Knowing that all eyes, her father, Isabel, Max and Mr Evans were trained on her. She felt like a showpiece on display. Again she questioned how she had got involved with this family. The Evans- they were the epitome of the rich and famous, the family known for the scandal that surrounded them as much as their major business successes.

Getting to know Andrew was pure coincidence. It was at a party of friends who knew a friend, of a friend. She had found his charm irresistible, that blonde hair, those golden playful eyes and she had no idea at the time about who he was, although she had felt an instant attraction to him and when he had told her...she had pushed the thought of ever being with him to the back of her mind. After all these were the Evans and Andrew was quite a few years older then her.

She being only 20 could only dream of being with someone so mature. But then one thing led to another, she still remembered the time he had asked her out, it was the first time she had met Max also.

That memorable day at the church fete, she had smiled at the dark beautiful stranger who unbeknown to her was Andrews half brother, Max, she had asked, what he’d like and in return he’d smiled that unforgettable smile back and said that the only thing he’d like to take home was her. Liz had been a little shocked, but Max didn't look like he'd noticed. He had asked her out then- on a date, but then Andrew had come and put his arm around her, “Going for the already taken again Maxwell?” already taken?. Liz hadn’t known what he had meant until Max had walked away with a forlorn expression on his face and Andrew had asked her out. That was the start of their relationship.

“God dad” Max slammed his drink down on the counter, “Now's not really the time for a thousand questions” he said in his usual abhorrent cocky tone, “I doubt either Mr Parker or Liz want to be listening to this, I’ll take them home”

“No” Liz said quickly, she didn’t want to be anywhere with Max right now…she was capable enough by herself thank you very much.

Max turned to look at her,“What do you mean no? You-"

“No” She cut him off again, “I’ll drive, father come on” Mr Parker looked at her.

“Are you sure-“ her father asked, looking more confused then Liz felt.

“Absolutely” she replied a lot more confidantly then she felt.

She stood up quickly and felt the blood rush to her head, but she kept herself standing. She wasn't going to look stupid and weak infront of the Evans, something she had felt so many times before.

She had to get out of this place, away from the them. If she stayed here any longer she was going to either do or say something she’d regret for a very, very long time. She could feel everyones eyes burning into the back of her neck, as she stood tall and proud and walked out of the Manor house. Completely missing the shocked, yet awed expression on Max's face.

poor Andrew, she just hoped that the plane crash had made an easy death for him. It would have been so awful if it was long, hard and torturous.

She drove home, she wasn’t sure how she done it- but she did and all the time a feeling of guilt overbearing her.

She was going to break the engagement off…even when she had found about the baby, she was going to break off the engagement and today too…she had been planning to anounce that it was off...

She shook her head, she would not envelope in self pity…asking herself again and again how she had got into this mess. She was a pretty young, 21 year old girl- she should be going out partying, dating, enjoying herself, not pregnant and engaged to someone she wasn’t even sure she wanted to marry. Though What did it matter now? He was dead, gone…

That night she lay in her bed, unable to sleep, mustering in and out of consciousness, she was glad when dawn came but she couldn’t make herself get out of bed, she lay there for what seemed like ages, there was a slight knock but before she could say anything Maria burst in.

“Make way, make way, dynamite entering” Maria threw her a box of chocolate shaped like a dynamite and then she was instantly on Liz's bed hugging her,

“Oh my god Liz, I can’t believe you didn’t phone me last night” Liz sat up a little shocked,

“how did you-"

“Your father Liz…” Maria grabbed her again and hugged her even closer, Liz struggled a little, sometimes Maria didn’t know her own strength. “I’m sooo sorry”

Liz nodded her head, looking at the bed covers, not really knowing how to respond.

“Oh my god- tell me your not feeling guilty, your blaming yourself aren’t you?”

“I- no..yes, I was going to break it off…” Liz stammered,

“I don’t believe it!” Maria shook her head furiously, “that is the most awful thing that you can do to yourself, you were unsure- big deal, every relationship goes through that phase, you cannot blame yourself” she put her finger under Liz’s chin, “understand?”

Liz nodded her head again thanking fate that she had met Maria “I don’t know what I’d do without you” Maria gave her another hug,

“Looks like I'm going to have to buy you some more of those self help books" she smiled "though are you going to get up anytime soon,” Maria asked whilst pulling away, “Cause there’s someone waiting impatiently for you out there in the living room”

“who?”

“Mr sexy yet oh so up himself, Maxwell Evans”

“What!” Liz gasped, “What is he doing here?” Maria put up her arms as if to surrender,

“don’t shoot the messenger, probably wanting to discuss the funeral arrangements”

Liz rolled her eyes, “I’ll be down in a second”, suddenly having the incentive to get up, she pulled on a black sweater and grey trousers before making herself down stairs completely makeup free. She put her hand on the door knob and could instantly hear Maria yakking away. She opened the door and stepped inside, Maria turned to look at her and smiled.

“Well here she is Max, nice meeting you again” she playfully winked at him and raised her hand. He in return took it, maintaining eye contact, they were both obviously flirting. Max then turning to look at Liz when Maria pulled her hand away.

“Hey-"

“Hey”, there was silence.

“…I guess I’ll leave you guys to…uh talk” Maria said, instantly feeling the unspoken tension in the air, she gave Liz a look before hastily retreating into the kitchen.

Liz looked at Max, he was appropriately wearing all black- a black sweater with black jeans, appropriately; because Liz had the feeling that this man, planned everything to the last detail. His aura of power seemed to stand out even more in her small living room and she tried not to feel intimidated. She realised she was staring when he raised his eyebrows in a questioning look and forced her dry mouth to say something.

“I don’t know why you have to come here to sort out the funeral arrangements, I don’t see what I could possibly do-" she began to babble. "I know there is stuff thay I should do- and I'd love too, but you don't need to ask me, not that I mind-"

“I’m not here about the arrangements” he looked down at her flushed face.

“So . . . why are you here?” she didn’t want him in her home more then she had to.

“I need to talk to you”

“talk” there was a long, long silence and Liz wondered what his deal was,

“I want you to marry me” Liz felt a gasp stick in her throat as she looked up at him,

“You wh-?“



[ edited 42time(s), last at 15-Feb-2003 7:03:26 PM ]
posted on 6-Jul-2002 7:05:51 PM by babybunny
Thanks so much for the Positive feedback guys, I'll be post some more very soon. I promise*wink*

Freefall In answer to your question, I hadn't mentioned the time period that the story is set in. But for my convenience I'm going to say its fairly recent because I'm not good at writing anything historical without any background info, the rest is up to the readers imagination *big*. The story is set in England and I think I should mention that the Evans's are a family, pretty bound by tradition, kinda like...erm royalty*happy*
posted on 6-Jul-2002 7:16:57 PM by babybunny
Yup *wink*, What is your called? I'll be sure to check it out*happy*
posted on 7-Jul-2002 3:55:40 PM by babybunny
Just bumping to post update, brb
posted on 7-Jul-2002 4:47:32 PM by babybunny
Here I am guys, again thanks for all the feedback. Very much appreciated. Just for fair warning, this scene is similar to the book. Not word for word ofcourse.

Last time:




“I want you to marry me” Liz felt a gasp stick in her throat as she looked up at him,

“You wh-?“



Part 2:

A Marriage of Convenience



Liz just stared at his face. Had she even heard right? Had Maxwell Evans just said that he wanted to marry her? She couldn’t continue what she has started, “Wh-“ she tried again.

“WHAT?” came the voice from the other side of the door, Maria stumbled in, looking like Liz felt. She looked from Max, to Liz, to Max again then they all looked at each other in stunned silence. “I’m going to make myself some coffee” Maria mumbled and made a hasty retreat holding on to her head.

Max turned back to Liz, “I’m serious Liz, I want you to marry me”


Just then she had the greatest urge to laugh in his face. Just laugh. “Oh spare the crap Max, I don’t find this feeble attempt of a joke very funny, not funny at all” she walked toward him “NOT FUNNY”.

They stood face-to-face, just inches apart, staring at one another. Not flinching at all, as if in some kind of competition. This encounter reminded Liz of something, their last meeting....that reminder made her heart beat that tad faster and colour drain her cheeks. Oh she’d never forget that day, it had been the night that she had become officially engaged to Andrew. A celebratory party had been thrown for Mr Evans. Liz and Andrew had gotten a little drunk, Andrew had told her how much he loved her and he wanted to marry her. Caught up in the moment of the fairy tale romance that she had always wanted, she had hastily agreed, one thing led to another and that had been her first time with him. First and last.

Liz hadn’t expected sex to be like this, it hadn’t been very nice or romantic- it had been pretty painful. After it was all over Andrew had left the room claiming that he’d ‘be right back’ and Liz had agreed to wait for him, but she wished she hadn’t because at that moment none other then Max had walked in. At that time she only recognised him as the stranger from the fete.

Liz held the bed covers close to herself, as Max walked in and just stared at her as if it was him that was in shock!

“What the hell are you doing?”

In attempt to keep some of her dignity she yelled right back, “What are you doing? Get out of m-my room!”

Max raised an eyebrow and leant against cabinet making him even more at home. “Your room?”

“Okay- maybe not mine but its Andrews room, so get out” she said stubbornly, forcing herself to meet his eyes.

“I think your mistaken…its my room”

Liz cringed even more and had the ‘I wish the ground would swallow me up’ moment, sure she had, had enough of those in her life- but this was really the queen of those type of embarrassing moments; though she wasn’t going to let him know that. She got up from the bed, haughtily wrapping the sheets around her, walking toward the bathroom, head held high. Suddenly to her utmost horror she found she was standing their utterly naked! The sheets got caught up in something and not only that, she found herself face to face with Max. She did the only thing that she could think of doing in such a situation, she made a run ffor it and ended up in the near bathroom. After slamming the door behind her Liz pulled on her tights and dress, cursing herself and her situation. Somehow, she felt surprisningly sober now.

She just wished that by the time she went back he’d have the decency to disappear, but no such luck. Max had changed and turned to look at Liz when she came to collect her bag,

“My bag” she pointed toward the small bag strewn on the other side of the bed, wanting to get out of there as quick as her legs would take her.

Max picked it up and handed it to her, not taking his eyes off her face, “Are you okay?”

“Why wouldn’t I be?”

“It was your first time- I saw the sheets, I can’t believe he’d do this to you, the fu-"

“I’m fine” she retorted, what was it to do with him? It was absolutely none of his business. “Its really none of your business” she added for affect.

“You make it my business- when you do it on my room, in my bed

“Sorry my bad” she had twirled around to walk away, what an arrogant brat.

“God what are you doing with him Liz? your just a baby, how old are you- like 17?”

“20 actually”

“He doesn’t even love you”

Liz’s eyes had flared then as she turned back around, “ Excuse me? Who are you to tell me that? He loves me very much- infact we're getting married”

"Married?"

"We're engaged . . .you didn't know?"

Max had just looked at her with that blank face that she couldn’t read, and she stared right back into the dark depth of those eyes, unflinching.

Andrew had arrived then, with a bottle in his hand and looked at the both of them, “Hey, what’s going on here?” he added in his drunken like state, staring at them both suspiciously.

“Congratulations brother” Max broke eye contact, walking away from her and reached out and took Andrews hand.

“On what?” he asked, sipping from the bottle and looking at Max coldly.

“The engagement”

Liz expected Andrew to deny it, she had only known him for a few months and all had been said in drunken glory.

It was a mistake.

She always knew Andrew Evans had, had no intention of marrying her and she had just told Max about the engagement to get him going. But the funny thing was he didn't say a word, he had just took Max’s hand and nodded, Maybe he did love her afterall....

“Won’t the family be pleased that their eldest is getting married?” Max had said in more of a sarcastic tone, clearly there was no love lost between these two, he had then dragged them down into the lobby and made the news official. Engaged. Liz and Andrew engaged.

Liz hadn’t known whether to thank him or kill him.

“Its not a joke” Max finally spoke, and Liz was bought back to reality “It’s the best proposal for us all…” he walked backward and sat himself down on the couch, “One- your pregnant and from what I can see- we can do much better for the baby then you alone can”, he said motioning his hand around the room, as if she lived in some kindof slum. Liz stared at him unmoving, “Two-“ he held out his fingers counting the points off like a business proposal, “You don’t want this child to be born a bastard do you? And truthfully neither does my father- you know how powerful he is Liz, he’ll do anything to keep his Andrews heir” he said his brothers name in contempt, “So I hope you didn’t have other plans”

“What other plans?” Liz raised her eyebrows at him.

“You know very well what I mean Elizabeth” he said casually, but Liz knew the casual air was all an act. An act that the Evans perfected at, “about keeping the baby . . ."

Liz had the greatest urge to tell him to get out, did he really think he could sit here and tell her how to run her life?

“If your talking about an abortion I wasn’t planning on that anyway” Liz rolled her eyes, she could never imagine doing something like that to her own flesh and blood “And far as money is concerned its all sorted out” she lied through her teeth, she had just left her job as a secretary a few weeks back because of the poor pay, but now she had wished she hadn’t taken matters so lightly, she was having a hard time finding another one. “You can go now Max, I don’t know what made you think I’d want to marry you”

Max made no attempt to move, “I’m not that desperate to marry you either” he said more harshly, “Think of this as a little give and a little take Liz because I’m not doing this from the goodness of my heart either- let me tell you something; I want the Manor, it belongs to me- it was originally my mothers and when she ran off with her co-worker she signed it over to my father- in return for him to let her go and do what she wanted. It was a little give and take, a business proposition for her . . .a business proposition for him. He intended to give it to his Andrew- but never me- he never liked me. I think I reminded him of her too much…that’s why he sent me to boarding school at a vey young age, he wanted me out of his face as soon as possible”

“I’m sorry,” said Liz looking up at him, “I had no idea…it must have been so awful” it all seemed so harsh . . .and his parents . . . so cold. At that moment, Liz was glad that she had the father she did.

“I’m not here to get your pity Liz, I’m here to get what’s mine….the manor”

“I don’t see how marrying me is going to help--isn't it yours now?” Andrew was dead.

“That’s where your wrong, he wants to give it to you and the baby, not me. He’s signed it over to you already and said the only way I can get anything is by marrying you . . ." there was silence whilst Max looked away from her, then their eyes met again, "my dads clever and cunning Liz, but still . . .I can’t see you losing either way, the baby gets the Evans name, you get the support- I suppose you can think of it as an . . .”

“business arrangement” she finished for him.

Max nodded his head, slowly, “Yeah…” his face lighting up. "Yes"

“Then we can divorce after the baby is born”

“First things, first hey?” he walked toward her,

“Wait- I haven’t agreed yet, I need to know more…about other arrangements.

She needed to know the living arrangements and what he’d be doing…she knew she’d be able to live without sex- infact she was probably off it for life, and as for falling in love she doubted that would happen to her, it was best left as the fairy tale concept. So she really didn’t have a reason to say no…to this arrangement, but she doubted someone like Max could stay without a woman very long. She wanted this to remain a business arrangement, a business arrangement only and she wanted Max to understand that.

“You don’t have to worry about the arrangements” he said as if reading her mind, “Its all sorted out” Liz had to admit that even she was impressed, “We’ll have separate rooms and you can rely on my faithfulness . . .as long as I can rely on yours"

Liz wasn’t too sure she believed him especially about the faithfulness part…but found herself nodding her head .…it would make it so much easier on her father too, even though she could definitely fend for herself she knew he worried and he’d be so much happier if he found that she’d be able to support this baby right. It was the best thing to do.

Before she could say anything else, Max was pulling her toward him. His hand delved deeper into his pocket and he pulled out a diamond ring, taking Liz’s hand and slipping it on her finger.
Liz looked up at him, he had one arm around her waist and was standing so, so close. She looked up at him in to those dark, dark depths and she had the strangest feeling of losing control. Maybe this whole thing wasn’t such a good idea….


[ edited 8 time(s), last at 8-Feb-2003 5:51:10 PM ]
posted on 8-Jul-2002 7:26:11 PM by babybunny
I’m glad your liking it so far, I’m enjoying writing it too.
Those that asked about Max’s POV. I think I’m going to leave it mainly at Liz’s….for now, though there will be more insight with Max as we go along.


Last time

Before she could say anything else, Max was pulling her toward him. His hand delved deeper into his pocket and he pulled out a diamond ring, taking Liz’s hand and slipping it on her finger.
Liz looked up at him, he had one arm around her waist and was standing so, so close. She looked up at him in to those dark, dark depths and she had the strangest feeling of losing control. Maybe this whole thing wasn’t such a good idea….


Marriage of Convenience

Part 3:


Max looked straight back into those soft, large, eyes. There was something about her, that when he looked at her he couldn’t look away, she enticed him, no end.

“Liz..” before he could say anything else, the door burst open and Maria ran in. No coffee in sight. Liz guessed, she had been expertly doing what Maria did best- eavesdropping. “Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god”


Liz had no idea if that was a good oh my god or a bad one, “Maria…”

“Oh my god” Maria stood with her hand on her mouth.

Max looked at Maria confused, “Are you okay?”

“Oh my god”

“I think she’s hyperventilating” Max walked toward her, worried.

“Maria—“ Liz whispered a little embarrassed, “ what are you-“

“What’s going on?” Mr Parker walked in to see Max, Maria and his daughter all looking rather flustered, “Is everything okay?” he looked at Max, he assumed that Max had come to discuss the funeral arrangements.

“Oh my god! Liz is getting married!” Maria turned to Mr Parker, “can you believe it?” she screamed out, “Married!”

Liz put her head in her hands; this was not the way that she had wanted her father to find out. Though unsurprisingly Mr Parker had shown little concern, he had asked a few questions looking a little confused then nodded his head saying, “I think that would be best for the baby”. Liz had expected something along those lines….though part of her within she wished that her father would have refused outright. Part of her felt she was rushing into this too fast. But her father was happy, Maria was happy…. couldn’t someone just tell her she was making the wrong decision?

******** *********

Liz fumbled with her earring, her hands sweaty and heart beating faster then usual, that proposal from Max had happened two weeks ago, time had flown since then.
Andrew’s funeral, coming to terms with the pregnancy, getting ready for the baby. She hadn’t really had time to think about what she was getting herself into- until now, and she had realised what a mistake she was making, she was seriously having second thoughts.

There were so many questions that still left her confused. She knew Max was a pretty wealthy businessman, owning companies in London and in the USA, so why want the manor so badly? And if it was a case of being bullied by his father, that was clearly impossible- he didn’t seem the type to be bullied into anything.
The earring fell to the floor “oh god Maria I can’t do this, help me..please!”

Maria who was profusely blushing Liz’s cheek, stuck the blusher brush in her mouth and leant in with the earring she had picked up, “calm downs Lizsh” she muttered, “I’d think you’d neber been out with a guy befork”

Liz shrugged her shoulders, Max said that he’d pick her up and that he had somewhere to take her, Liz had agreed because this would be the right time to tell him about the decision she had made…she wanted him to be the first one to know- that she didn’t want to go ahead with the proposition any longer.

“I don’t know why I’m so damn nervous” she rubbed her sweaty palms against the fitted red dress, which Maria had let her borrow, “Its just…” she wondered whether to tell Maria about the change of heart.

“-Max?” Maria took the brush out of her mouth and continued to makeup Liz.

“No!” Liz said quickly, “No- I’m not nervous because of him”

“Don’t worry Liz, I’d be too, just think though, you can tell the world you had sex with Maxwell Francis Evans”

“Ria!” Liz pulled away from her, “you know nothing like that’s going to happen and is that his middle name?”

“No, but I think it suits him”

“It’s a girls name”

“ the last guy I went out with was called Francis, kinda looked like Max, had the attitude to go with the money and absolutely fantastic in bed”

Liz put both her hands on her friends shoulders, “Get your mind out of the gutter Maria, I’m not even sure if I’m going to go through with this”

“Good- then maybe you can tip him off about me”

Liz got up and threw a pillow at her friend, she knew that Maria was joking around and that really, she understood how much of a deal this whole thing was to her, having her around made things so much easier to bear. Maria had helped Liz so much emotionally over the last few weeks.

“How do I look?” Liz twirled around in front of the mirror. Back looked a girl she hardly recognised, she was wearing a low cut knee length red velvet dress which clung to every curve perfectly, 6-inch high heels which she was having trouble walking in and hair curled and piled on top of her head with ringlets coming down that bought out her dark eyes.

“If I was a guy- I’d even change my name to Francis to get with you”

“So you agree it’s a bad name for a guy?”

“the worst”

The doorbell rang and Liz looked at Maria alarmed. “Its him! agh, how do I look? my purse, where is it, where is it?”

“I’ll get the door” Maria shook her head and began heading downstairs

“Oh god, I’m gonna tell him its off, arh my purse” Liz hurried around looking around for her purse in a state of panic, “Where’s my purse? My purse!” she yelled picking up the piles of clothes and throwing them all around her.

Maria stopped in her tracks and turned around, “here” she picked it off the desk and threw it at her.

“Okay- okay” Liz caught it, breathing hard. Still getting those weird butterflies in her stomach, that didn’t seem to be going away. How was she going to tell Max that she didn’t want to go through with the business arrangement any longer?

“Okaaay” Maria gave Liz a strange look; she had never looked so nervous in her whole life. “stay calm Liz, you want me to get the door?”

“No I’ll get it” Liz stood rooted to the spot, unable to get her legs going.

“You gonna move then?” Maria pointed to the bedroom door. Liz was acting strange.

Yeah….yeah” Liz nodded her head and walked down the staircase, she thanked her lucky stars when she managed to get to the bottom without major injury, she knew she was going to make a fool of herself wearing heels this high.

“Liz?” Maria called out, standing on the staircase behind her.

Liz turned around, “Yeah Ria?”

“Just remember, what ever decision you make I’ll back you up one hundred percent”

Liz looked down at the diamond ring on her left finger… and pulled at it slightly, she put her hand on the door handle, “Ria?”

“Yeah?”

“I love you,” she began turning the handle

“Liz?”

“hmm”

“how much?”

“Maria……..shut up” she turned to poke her tongue out at her friend as she opened the door only to feel her foot twist, “oh shit “, she knew it was bad idea to wear shoes like that, and she was falling now and unable to stop herself.

“Careful” She felt strong arms keep her from falling. She looked up to see Max looking down at her, it was the first time she had seen him properly in two weeks, and he was an ultimate shock to her senses. He looked so….the word to describe him…suave, sexy, masculine….there wasn’t just one.

She heard a giggle and realised she was still gaping up at him and still lying in his arms, mouth wide open. “Hi…uh…” Liz swallowed and abruptly got up from his arms turning around to look at Maria who was trying to hide her giggles unsuccessfully.


Max smiled “Liz”, he nodded his head, not noticing her discomfort.

“Hi” she said again, looking anywhere but at him, she hated this feeling- he made her feel so self-conscious.

“You look…. nice” Max stared at the diva standing in front of him, nice really wasn’t the word to describe her, but...oh well.

Liz heard another giggle from the other side of the door, and was bought back to her senses. She was acting like a school girl- on her first date. Oh come on Liz…she gave herself a mental kick. Stop acting so childish.
“Excuse me a moment” she turned back to the front door and gave Maria a furtive glance before slamming the door shut, Maria wasn’t helping either. Liz twirled back around to face Max.

“ready?”

Max nodded his head, looking her up and down once more, slowly, “ready as can be” he took her hand and leading her to his car. Liz got into the front seat with a sigh, wondering how she was going to tell him, that it was off…

“a penny for your thoughts” came the voice from beside her,

she glanced at Max, “Uh…no I was just wondering where you were going to take me and why its such a big secret”

“You’ll see” Max winked at her, giving her a once over again. He couldn’t seem to stop staring, she looked so…nice. He pulled up and Liz looked around to where she was. He had bought her to the Manor- so this was the big secret? Dinner with family.

Oh "…Max….I need to…. talk to you” she said, as she got out of the car and walked uncomfortably into the night, toward the manor thinking she was way too overdressed for dinner with the Evans’s. She had to tell him now; otherwise she wouldn’t get a chance.

“Sure Liz, you know you can talk to me,” he answered, glancing at her sideways, she looked worried.

“I don’t think-I don’t think….. that I can go through with it anymore”

Max stopped at the door, “You what?” his face changed then, he had that look in his eyes again, the look which Liz couldn’t quite read, before he could say anything more, the door flung open and Isabel stood at the entrance a massive grin showing her pearly white teeth.

“Here they are! everyone get ready!” she shouted behind her. Liz wondered what was going on, she stepped inside and saw hundreds of people in the hall of the manor. “the engaged couple!” Isabel continued from behind her, raising her wine glass.

Liz looked at Max horrified, “You- oh my god I can’t believe you arranged this without telling me”

Max shrugged his shoulders and gave her a knowing smirk, “I thought you’d like it”

The ass…...he must have known she was having second thoughts.

“Come along now baby” all of a sudden Max’s demeanour changed completely again, he bought his face close to hers, breathing in her ear, at the same time putting an arm around her and dragging her right into the middle of the crowd of snotty people and photographers.

“No...Max..no..no” she whispered. He didn’t seem to hear, there was uproar and everyone started talking and giving congratulations at the same time, Liz stood in the middle shocked.

Firstly this was totally unexpected. They were all here for her and she had no idea, secondly she had never seen so many people together, like this in her whole life,

Flash. Congratulations Elizabeth, Maxwell, Wow, you guys look so great together. Kiss. Kiss. I’m so proud of you honey. Wow, she’s a beauty Flash. Flash.

Fake. All fake.

Max’s grip tightened around her, “C’mon now Liz” he breathed in her ear, she wanted to push him away, but he was holding onto her...so incredibly tight. She turned to glance at him furiously,

“I don’t believe you- I can’t believe you did this” she was so angry, she was shaking inside, “I told you I’d tell you when I was ready to tell everyone” Liz struggled against him.

Max continued to grasp her to him even harder, her body held moulded closely against his.

His face was completely devoid of any emotion even though Liz looked ready to kill him, he was obviously good at playing the public act.

“Idiot” Liz seethed knowing he had heard.

Max’s jaw clenched and then unclenched, he leant down to her to say something, to Liz’s astonishment and utmost anger kissed her instead, his mouth fell on her hers, his tongue flickering in and caressing hers slowly. Liz hadn’t been expecting that and let him kiss her, whilst she stood completely stunned. He never failed to surprise her.

A congregation of ahhh, ohhh, don’t they look sweet? Flash, photo taken. Pose. Flash.

Max pulled away, looking into her eyes, “You taste pretty good”

Liz struggled, “Let me fucking go”

Hey Max, great bash….. Wow, I never knew you had fiancée… What a surprise dear!….. Elizabeth isn’t it?

Max turned back to her when they got a moment away from the crowd, “Don’t Liz…nows not the time, we’ll talk later”

“What the hell, I’m never talking to you again, now let me go”

He continued to put on a show, digging his hand into her side every time she struggled,
Liz looked up at him. She really, really hated him.

“Hey you” drawled a voice from behind them and Max twirled around taking Liz with him, Liz had no choice to follow, he was holding onto her so tight and was much stronger then her. She came face to face with an array of blonde curls and saw piercing blue eyes from beneath them. A bad feeling surrounded Liz as soon as her dark eyes met those ice blue ones.


“Hey!” Max untangled his arm from around Liz for the very first time that evening, giving the girl a wholesome hug and kiss “Liz meet- my business associate and great friend- Tess Harding”

Tess glanced at Liz from under her heavily mascarad eyelashes, looked her up and down and turned to Max, “You know…you could of done much better then that”



Okay guys don’t kill me for leaving it like that, but I wanted to introduce her. Mwahhaha.


[ edited 4 time(s), last at 9-Jul-2002 5:38:01 AM ]
posted on 13-Jul-2002 2:58:32 PM by babybunny
You guys are so great, thanks for the feedback. I knew Tess wasn’t liked, but wow, what a reaction. *wink*

Avenging Angel- The fic is set in the English countryside.

PS_Dreamer- Are you the same from FF? (just out of curiousity, I know I’ve seen that name somewhere )


Last time
Tess glanced at Liz from under her heavily mascarad eyelashes, looked her up and down and turned to Max, “You know…you could of done much better then that”


Marriage of convenience
part 4:





“You could of done much better then that”

The words rang loud and clearly in Liz’s ears. Liz stood facing Tess, in absolute state of shock. No one had ever made such harsh comments, so direct to her before, and she was unsure how to react. Her eyes registered Max’s arm draped casually around Tess’s shoulder, that arm that had been holding her only a second ago and she felt a certain loathing toward the girl.

You could of done better then that.

What was that supposed to mean? But she knew- she knew what Tess had meant, she had meant she wasn’t good enough. Not good enough to be here, not good enough for Max. Max and Liz came from two different worlds, just like Andrew and Liz. It wasn’t meant to be. Their lives were too different; they were from opposite ends of the spectrum. Even as a business arrangement this whole thing was absolutely disastrous. Everything was in total chaos already and she knew that it wouldn't get any better.

Max abruptly turned to look at Tess, “Excuse me?”. For the first time Liz could see strain on his face, he hadn’t been expecting that comment either. Well she had to give it to him, aleast he had some human emotion inside him, something that she was beginning to doubt.

He was confronted by peals of laughter; Tess began laughing, really laughing. “Oh my god….you guys….” She held on to her sides wiping the tears from her eyes, “You guys… are just too funny, two of a kind”

Both glanced at her questioningly, Tess pulled at Max’s collar “sweetie…you’d know I’d never think like that about any of your girls” she glanced briefly at Liz, “she’s an absolute honey…” she began laughing, her oh so loud, laugh again. Her laughter only working to condescend Liz to into a further state of annoyance, sending shivers down her spine
Any of his girls? Liz wondered with a raised eyebrow, exactly what was she hinting at?

Max’s serious expression and was replaced by a smile. “Tess!” he shook his head nocohantly and picked up a glass of wine as a waiter passed, “that was….”

“surprising?” she laughed, “What can I say? I’m full of surprises”

“I’m full of surprises” Liz pulled a face in disgust, mimicking the blonde haired girl. “Excuse me” she muttered with narrowed eyes, before leaving the two ‘friends’ to walking away. Did Max really find this crude attempt of a joke funny? Did he really believe that she was joking? Max must be less clever then she had formerly thought. She wasn’t just a ‘friend’, no girl that was only a friend would flirt so openly, Liz wasn’t one to be taken for a fool.


Tess watched Liz walk away, “ trouble in paradise already?” she playfully rolled her eyes at Max, pulling at her blond curls.

“No nothing like that, she’s just a little…” Max turned his head and his gaze followed Liz, “…hormonal- Liz!”

Liz heard her name being called but didn’t turn back; until she felt a cool hand land on her shoulder. “Come on Liz it was a joke”

Liz shrugged Max’s hand off, “Yeah- a joke, an absolutely hilarious one at that” she continued walking, and unaware of where she was going. It was hard to be aware, when there were huge amounts of people everywhere and when you were just walking in state blind fury.

“Well that’s just Tess” he pulled her to the side, “that’s her humour, its kind of-“

“screwed?”

“I guess you could say that”

Liz shook her head in fury, “great, now could you leave me alone for a bit- go back to your friend with the screwed sense of humour, my head is absolutely full of shit right now..and I want to be left alone” In other words understand that I don’t want to be anywhere near you.

She was so angry with the man that stood in front of her; he hadn’t taken her feelings into consideration one bit, all which had happened these past two weeks…even she herself found it hard to sort out in her head and yet he had thrown the engagement party without informing her and when she had declined he resorted to drag her through it. Furthermore she was hurt that Max was finding excuses for that lame attempt for a joke. The girl didn’t like her, plain and simple, there wasn’t any more to it and he was as bad as the blonde bimbo if he thought that she was going to stand there and take it while they both laughed at her feeble jokes.

“Liz your acting stupid…. there’s really no need to act like this, I understand what your going through-”

“Oh please- don’t pull that crap on me Max, you don’t have a clue, so don’t look down at me from the Evans throne and say you know what I’m going through, yeah if you really knew you wouldn’t pull this prank on me, you wouldn’t act like that selfish little brat that you were bought up to be, you wouldn’t force me into walking around with a fake smile plastered on my face whilst others talk behind our backs…you don’t know the half of it- you really don’t-” Liz took a deep breath, hands flaying through her hair “look…just go”

He looked at Liz with an unreadable expression and for the slightest moment then, Liz thought he was going to say something worth hearing, before he could open his mouth an arm landed on his shoulder and a bundle of shiny, blonde curls popped up from behind him, “this is my favourite song Max”

“Uh- Tess”

“come dance with me” she pouted.

“One second, …Liz” he turned to look at her but she had already walked away, Tess stroked her hand down his chest giving him an apologetic smile. “she needs time alone to relax, why don’t you let me help you relax a little” she grasped his hand and led him onto the floor. Max had no choice but to follow.

*********

Liz sat in the corner and watched them dance, what kind of dancing was that? If they wanted to screw that much they should get a damn room…and what the hell was she doing? she was groping…yes definite groping. Liz cursed silently when someone stood in her way, blocking the view of the groping buddies. She moved her body to the side to get a better view. Urgh, what the hell? She had her hand on his ass. His ass! Not being able to take it any longer she walked over to the drinks table and grabbed the first thing in sight, something and vodka shot.

Stupid ass groping b-. She took the glass of something alcohol and downed it.

“Elizabeth right?” came a voice from beside her.

Liz rolled her eyes, “Yeah me, I’m Liz” she looked up at a scrawny looking guy, wearing a bright blue shirt and trousers. Her instant impression was that he didn’t fit into the whole formality of the atmosphere, his sleeves were rolled up and he stood with a wine glass in one hand a glass of juice in another, smiling at her sheepishly.

She turned away from him and picked up a glass of wine from the tray of a passing waiter.

“I’m Stuart”

“So?” She’d been introduced to a hundred people tonight; introducing oneself seemed rather fickle at this point in time.

“Oh don’t mind me” he grinned, bypassing her intolerance, “I thought I’d introduce myself as you’ll be seeing a lot of me,”

“and what makes you think that?”

“I’m Max’s underdog”

“Oh” Liz had no idea what he was talking about.

“his personal secretary” he continued to introduce himself, not roused by Liz’s lack of interest “Max managed to keep you from me for so long, even though I know everything about him, I was extremely surprised that he managed to keep you a secret……how long has it been again?”

Liz shrugged her shoulders, taking a glass of red wine, “how am I meant to know?” she muttered between gulps.

“Yeah four months” he answered his own question, after taking time to think about it. Liz wondered if he had heard her, she assumed that like most people here he either ignored or completely missed anything that that wasn’t convenient with the web of lies Max had told.
Max had already told everyone the whole story, they had met four months back, they had fallen instantly in love, he had proposed and now they were going to go and live in London together- it was great planning on his behalf, she found the whole stage set-up rather comic but it would be a great cover up for the baby, because from what she knew from dynasty on the Evans, people would be counting the months from the marriage to the delivery and if found any type of mishap, true or not, it would be all over the newspapers.

“you obviously know more about my life then I do- congratulations to you” Liz held up her drink to him. “and since you know so much about everything, is there anywhere where I can get away from this shit a while?” not caring in the slightest that she maybe stepping on thin ice concerning Max’s ever so carefully planned cover up.

Stuart laughed, “Your enjoying the night I see, don’t blame you really this is an Evans party, people always end up wringing each others necks”

“are you trying to be funny?” she wasn’t really sure at what these people found funny anymore, they all seemed to have seriously screwed humour.

“No deadly serious- but I’d thought you’d know most of that by now” he gave her a look, as if he pitied her. Liz, in return gave him an overly bright smile; glanced one more time at Max and Tess before walking away from him; she didn’t want this right now. She didn’t need it, what she needed now was to be alone from this…. chaos.

Liz made her way up the staircase feeling flustered and confused. She hated being in this place, in this place where you were taken on a roller coaster ride against your own will. First Andrew, the baby, the engagement…now this. What had happened? When had her life taken such dramatic twists?

She found herself walking, unaware of the path that her feet led her too. She opened the door to a room and once more found herself in that same room. That room where everything had started, Max’s bedroom.

Slowly walking inside; the first thing she noticed was that it looked pretty much the same since the time she had last been there, that fateful night, the night that was etched clearly in her memory and made her cringe day in and day out when she thought of the consequences it had bought upon her.
She looked around the room, she could tell wasn’t used much, it smelled of newness, like a newly painted house which the owner has yet to make his own. It made sense, Max was hardly ever home, always out on business, she had only seen him twice during her time with Andrew. Kicking her shoes off as she walked across the room feeling the soft bounciness of the carpet beneath her, but failing to realise the stain of red wine she was leaving from the half tipped glass in her hand.

She fumbled over to the desk, resting her glass on the side and began thumbing through a pile of papers neatly arranged at both corners of the desk, which gave off an instant vibe of perfectionism, everything was neatly arranged in place. That’s why the brown wallet caught her eye, it was jutting out beneath a pile of work files. Liz pulled out the chaffed, lined wallet and opened it curiously, only to see a black and white picture of a female who looked amazingly like Max. Those same penetrating soulful eyes, hair as dark as night, a smile that Liz rarely saw on Max, but knew that when he did finally give it a go, he’d look just as vibrant. It was his mother. This was intriguing; Liz wondered why Max had kept this picture so close to him. Last time they had talked to him she hadn’t missed the loathing in his voice, automatically picking up on the resentment he held toward her the tiny amount of time he did address her.

She made her way over Max's bed, wallet in hand and pulled herself up, rubbing her sore feet, before sitting on the white sheets cross-legged, opening up the wallet a vast array of passport sized pictures fell out onto the bed, all of the same lady, doing various things at different ages in her life and at times with young children. Liz guessed them as Andrew, Max and Isabel.

It was all so bearably sweet, these pictures gave off the perfect view of wholesome family life, something Liz would have never likened to the Evans, again she wondered why they were here, lying on his desk in between his work papers. Flicking through the pictures continuously she found herself lying horizontally across the bed. Liz yawned, she hadn’t realised how tired she was, the cream walls looked painfully bright and they didn’t seem to want to remain in the same place no matter how still she lay,
“stay still!” she moaned, but they continued swirling around her, not wanting to listen. Liz slowly closed her eyes, glad when unconsciousness claimed her and that throbbing headache that hammered rythmatically against her skull.

******

Damn it. Again. Tess had gotten totally drunk and spilt wine on his clothes again, once she started drinking…things got out of hand, he knew that too well.
Max looked down at his white shirt, another ruined by Tess. Not that it mattered…not really; he just didn’t want it to become too much of a habit. He began unbuttoning his shirt and stepped into his bedroom only to see Liz collapsed on the covers. He couldn’t help but stop and look at the girl lying across his bed. The shadows from the un-drawn curtains caressing her honey skin in places that only made his own body react in extreme. Not again Max.... He reached for another shirt, reminding himself why he was here.

Liz felt the hair stand up on the nape of her neck and found that she was awake; she got up dizzily with a start to see a shirtless Max.

“Your awake” Max continued buttoning up his shirt.

“Uhuh” Liz’s looked up at him rubbing the sleep from her eyes, her gaze swept over him, noticing his taut stomach, her eyes continued to follow his hands to the bottom of his shirt that lead- “Oh” she abruptly looked away, as if her gaze had fallen onto something forbidden.

She looked up just in time to see the smirk on Max’s face, “….good”

Liz bit her lip, hating the way she reacted around him, he was only a few years older at most and he made her feel more of a child then when she was with Andrew. Around Max, everything was out of control. Her eyes couldn’t help but scan that body once again, feeling her skin burn when her eyes met his, gazes lingering at one another, the tension seemed to burst through the air like flames of sizzling current.

Max suddenly moved forward and sat at the edge of the bed, “Liz..” leaning forward his fingers stopped only inches away from her face.

Liz gazed at his hand wondering what he wanted to say, when he didn’t speak anymore, she looked up at his face questioningly, slightly covered by shadow, mouth slightly open, those amber eyes looking back into hers as if reading into something deep within her.

“Yes?” she whispered. Her breath caught in her throat, when his gaze brushed from her eyes to her neck to her petite waist and up again.

“Nothing”

Liz felt every inch of her body tremble when he touched her arm, sliding his fingers up to her bare shoulder. “Max..” God, the way he was making her feel…

The other hand rested on her cheek, Liz felt her eyes close when he caressed it lightly, taking in the feel of his light touch like butterflies dancing on her skin. His hand danced from her cheek, down her lips to the nape of her neck, down between her breasts. Their breaths deepened synchronously, when Max bought his hand to touch her right breast. It was only a light touch that lingered for a second but before Liz could stop herself she was gravitating forward like opposite ends of a magnet their bodies crashing into one another, her arms around his neck and legs around his waist, their mouths instantly sought each other’s, in hungry, longing hard kisses.

Liz thought she heard a groan, when she began moving on his groin in circular motions bringing her body closer and closer. Her body pressed hard against his, feeling the reaction that she had caused in him made her legs tighten around his waist further, pounding against him rhythmatically, “Oh…oh…OH…Max” she breathed against his mouth.

“Liz..” he pulled her closer to him, just wanting to get as close as was humanely possible “that feels….good”

Liz thought she heard him mumble something before, she felt him moving to change positions, he fell on top of her this time, his hand quickly reaching for her buttocks and pressing them to him, moulding himself with her inch for inch. Liz’s legs remained wrapped around his waist, her hands in his hair, feeling those rhythmatic caresses of his lips against her lips, his body against hers, his hardness rubbing against her femininity. All of it so… raw, so instinctive, so full of desire.

Max moulded her buttocks in his hands bringing her movements to him, back and forth, he could feel his member tightening, wanting more, every time Liz tightened his thighs around him. The only barrier between them being the clothes they wore. His mouth bit down on her neck to emblazon her with his mark and he heard her moan, he wanted her so much, wanted so much to break the barrier between them, his hand reached for the zipper at the back of her dress not being able to control the moans that escaped his lips when Liz tightened herself against him harder; in between fumbling and hungry touching, the corner of his eye noticed something- the brown wallet…those photos.

Liz moaned when he pulled at her neck, no one had ever made her feel like this by doing so little, she felt the colourful room swirling around, she was in this room, on this bed, after a party…. feeling an instant sense of déjà vu claim her, she felt herself stiffen, after a party…in this room…on this bed… with…

“Andrew”
“Where did you get those?” they caught each other’s eyes and froze at exactly the same time, Liz’s hand fell from his hair, her legs loosening. Max’s instantly pulled his hands from beneath her, snatched at the pictures that lay on the bed, jumping off and staggering backwards.

They looked at one another registering what had just happened. The tension bit through the air and the silence seemed to stretch on for an unbearably long time, both burning in repercussions of their actions.

“What?”
“that wasn’t supposed to happen” they both spoke over one another again.

Liz self-consciously straightened out her dress, which had ridden up to her naval.
Max coughed.

“You went through my things,” he accused finally, voice calmly trained.

“I didn’t- I was just looking”. Another long silence.

“snooping…”

“No…looking, I was looking” she commented, blushing and gaze travelling across the bed. Her headache was back and this time with a vengeance.

“Your quite a nosey one aren’t you Elizabeth?” he chimed, Liz could see the sparks of some unknown emotion in his eyes, keep your hands to yourself next time”

Formerly cringing, Liz now felt herself anger. “Excuse me?… If anyone had trouble keeping hands to themselves it ‘s you Maxwell, what were you doing here anyway?”

Liz could see the smirk forming on his lips, in absolute cold contempt he commented, “I am sorry for visiting my own bedroom, it must be my fault that every time I visit you seem to be a little busy in it- maybe its this room, it obviously seems to turn you on”

Liz felt herself turn red. God how she hated him. She began moving off the bed and felt herself tumble onto the floor, swaggering a little,“get out of my room Max, no one said you could come in” she pointed toward the bedroom door.

“Your drunk Elizabeth” Max looked at her coldly, she was very drunk.

“shut up Maxwell, your drunk not me” Liz commented trying to walk past him, but instead banging into his desk and spilling the remnants of red wine that was left in the glass all over the carpet.

Her hand went to her mouth. “Sorry…I’m….that wasn’t…sorry” Liz held on to her throbbing head, trying not to cry, too much had happened today and too fast…If this evening was anything to go by, marrying Max was going to be one hell of a ride, another wave of dizziness over came her and held onto the desk for support…she heard a voice and heard looked up a little too fast, before she could do anything she felt the world spin and darkness envelope her.

TBC

Hope your not disappointed between the lack of face slapping between Liz/ Tess, but I have a feeling we may see some of that in the future.*angel*

[ edited 5 time(s), last at 13-Jul-2002 7:06:50 PM ]
posted on 15-Jul-2002 7:30:38 PM by babybunny
Oh. Wow. Thanks for all the bumping and the comments!You guys make put a smile on my face*big*, very entertaining*tongue*I've been really, really busy with work etc and hopefully the new part will be up by tomorrow or Weds.

And love the fanart- its so pretty.Wish I knew how to use my PSP. Oh well.
posted on 18-Jul-2002 7:19:03 PM by babybunny
Hey guys, I’m a day late, but back with a new part.

Last time

Liz held on to her throbbing head, trying not to cry, too much had happened today and too fast…If this evening was anything to go by, marrying Max was going to be one hell of a ride, another wave of dizziness over came her and held onto the desk for support…she heard a voice and heard looked up a little too fast, before she could do anything she felt the world spin and darkness envelope her.

Marriage of convience

Part 5



Liz’s eyes fluttered open only to feel a throbbing headache takeover. Opening her eyes was a quite a task, so she decided to leave them closed.

“I think she’s awake” she heard Isabel speak, instantly remembering where she was, with all the reminders of last night that came with it. She felt herself wanting to lose consciousness all over again; last night was not something that she particularly wanted to remember.
Finally she forced her eyes open, the light hit her like a jolt of electric through her skull, “aaah, my head hurts” Liz touched the side of her head whilst she pulling herself up and looking around. She was lying in a king-size bed in large, over cleaned and vastly decorated room. The Evans guest room.

Her eyes were drawn to Max who was sitting at the edge of the bed, gazing at her intensely, eyes drawn out, hair uncombed. Liz noticed that he looked very ‘un’ Max like, somewhat rugged, worried and tired looking. “Here take this” he grabbed a glass of dark fluid from the side table and held it to her lips whilst helping her up from behind. Liz drank feeling the cough syrup tasting liquid overwhelm her, “yuck” she pulled a face at Max, who in return raised an eyebrow and placed the glass down on the table again.

“Oh thank god your alright” Isabel gasped, she walked around to the bed, putting the magazine she was reading to one side, “do you know how much we were worried about you—about the baby?”

Liz slumped against the headboard, “I know- it was so stupid- I was stupid, I shouldn’t have drunk…” she found herself closing her eyes as the throbbing continued “can you please draw the curtains? Its too bright”

Max got up and drew the curtains, “ One moment you were fine and the next- you had fallen- your pretty lucky that I caught you, otherwise….” he looked down at her,

“I would have fallen on the cushy carpet?” Liz opened her eyes meeting his gaze directly. There was silence and Max turned away to gaze out of the window.

“-stupid, that’s an understatement” Isabel continued, “what made you even think if doing something like that?… do you know-“

“Iz” Max spoke abruptly, giving her a stern look, which must have meant something between both siblings because Isabel rolled her eyes, walking back to the chair she was sitting in. “whatever Max”

“Liz how are you feeling?” he asked sincerely, turning back to look at her with sympathetic eyes, he made his way to the edge of the bed and sat down next to her.

“dandy” Liz looked at the bed covers scornfully, because looking directly at Max was hard. He just reminded her of another stupid mistake that could have been added to her ever-growing list. Last night could have been much more serious in more ways then one.

God she had been so stupid, letting everything to get to her like that. If not for her, she had to keep going for this baby; everything she was doing was for this baby, to give it the best start in life and for it to live the life she didn’t. Even if it meant sacrificing a few things.

“Do you want something to eat?” Max continued to gaze at her with an intense look in his eyes.

Liz shook her head then guessed it wouldn’t hurt to be a little politer, uncomfortable situations weren’t really helping the circumstances, and he seemed to be trying, “No” she looked into those darkened pools of amber, “no I’m fine- I don’t think I’d be able to stomach anything right now…I don’t usually eat until mid morning…. there’s not really much point- morning sickness and all”

Max nodded his head, feeling that he should be able to do more for her she looked so sick, and fragile like a china doll that needed to be taken care of. Losing control wasn’t really something he was used to either.

“I’m glad you still remembering that your with child” the voice came from the doorway and all three turned to look at the major standing curtly in the doorway, hands in pocket standing tall and proud, “do you realise that danger you put the baby in?”

Liz sighed, feeling the guilt burden up as the ‘family’ gathered up on her “I know—I know I should have taken care of the baby, I know you need the baby, I know no harm should come to the baby, yeah I know!” with her parting words she glared at the major with fire in her eyes. Sitting down and taking a telling off wasn’t something she took to well.

Either ignoring or totally missing Liz’s tone of voice, he walked further into the room and continued; “then I expect that you understand how this kind of behaviour was totally immature and careless for a mother to be”

Liz opened her mouth to speak, how dare he tell her what to do and what not?

“And If I see such behaviour repeated- I’m going to have to-“

“Okay enough” Max looked at his father blankly, “she understands, now lay off, she’s tired—can’t be too good for your special grandchild either”

The major stroked his face, looking a little appalled as if he wasn’t used to Max talking to him like that. “All I’m saying is-“

“We get what your saying, you are shoving your opinions in everyone’s face again, well let me tell you father keep those worthless comments to yourself because I don’t want to hear them now or ever- come on Liz lets go” he began walking out of the room.

Liz noticed the amused expression on Isabel’s face before she got out of the bed and scrambled after him, one- because he said it with so much authority it would have been stupid to argue and two- she wanted to see the Major squirm.

Max stalked out of the room, brushing past his father and Liz followed, wondering where that had come from. Max had given his father a damn good talking to.

“what was that about?” Liz closed Max’s bedroom door behind her, turning to look at him.

“The asshole, he likes to threaten- I’m telling you Liz, don’t ever take any shit from him, he’s all talk and empty threats”

Liz gazed up at him thinking there was more to this then he was letting on, Max wasn’t the type to react so harshly, so quickly. “It seemed that there was more going on- what did he mean…about having to do something if such behaviour being repeated?”

Max walked backward sitting down on the bed, legs sprawled in front of him, “like I said- all talk” he leant back on his elbows, “get changed Liz—I’ll drop you off home” Max dismissed the subject even though Liz was dying to know what the Major had meant. Empty threat or not, it sickened her that the major would dare say something like that in the first place.

“Its okay- I can make my own way home” she began walking toward the side bathroom slowly, contemplating whether she could get there or not without passing out.

Max rolled his eyes, “planning on walking?”

Liz shrugged her shoulders “ suppose”

Max looked at her bemused, “you really think you could do the whole 6 miles?”

“You’d be surprised” Liz smirked, enjoying the expression of annoyance in his eyes. Max was used to people doing what he said and when he said it and she was having fun playing with him.

“Your so darn stubborn”

“I know” Liz headed to the bathroom, smiling to herself. She found making Max’s life hard slightly amusing, especially since the way he had treated her last night, payback somehow enlightened ones soul. After straightening out her hair and clothes, she walked back into the bedroom and noticed that Max was no longer in the there. Maybe he had gotten fed up with her after all and run off to brood in some corner…. the smile broadened on her face. Making her way downstairs and outside she wondered how on earth she was going to get home, she didn’t know where to start, she didn’t know the way home and had no money for a bus or taxi.

Liz took a deep breath and randomly choosing a direction. The left….yes it must have been the left, she began walking, hoping that she was going that this was the right way or she was going to have a hard time wondering through endless roads alone.

A hoodless convertible stopped beside her. “Like the car? Its new, just imported from Japan”

“I told you Max, I can find my own way” Liz glanced at him and continued walking, the man never gave up.

“who said I’m offering you a lift? You walk, I’ll drive- just I don’t want you to be missing the pleasure of my company too soon- so I decided I’d drive along with you” he flashed her a smile, following her with the car. “Uh Liz- just so you know- your home is back that way” he pointed behind him to the right.

Liz rolled her eyes and got into the passenger seat slamming the door shut behind her,“and you said I was stubborn?”

Max smiled, looking back over his shoulder to do a U- turn, “It’s my duty to take care of you and that’s what I’m going to do”

“I’m not some helpless little girl- that needs constant looking after”

“If you say so”

Liz had the greatest urge to smack him one, “you irritate me” she muttered scathingly and took to staring at the passing houses and greenery. Sitting here in his car together had the effect of reminding her of their proximity and proximity reminded her of yesterday night. God she’d almost had sex with him last night, thinking that made her stomach somersault.

Max made a noise at the back of his throat, “I can tell” he said with a raised eyebrow, there was silence for a few moments “-Liz about last night”

Here it came, the moment she knew would come, she bit her bottom lip preparing to dive into that pre-planned speech about the awkwardest of awkward situations called last night. “Last night...shouldn’t… have happened” Liz began, “I didn’t know what I was doing, you were drunk I was drunk, then I jumped on you and we almost had sex…um and…but we didn’t” Liz felt herself reddening.

“No we didn’t,” he confirmed staring straight ahead as he drove.

“I’m sorry…it wont happen again”

“No, no” she saw the smile forming at the corner of his mouth, nothing to be sorry about”, he glanced at her sideways before concentrating on the road again “It wasn’t your fault and definitely nothing to feel sorry about”

Liz shifted, “Okay”. Wow that was over quick. Good.

“We’re going to be husband and wife, such activities will no doubt be pretty common in the future…”

Liz’s eyes widened and she snapped her head around to see him grinning widely, couldn’t stop the smile that appeared on her own lips, “watch the arrogance Maxwell- too much arrogance has weakened many men”

“I think of it as a quality of mine- surprising how much of a turn on girls find it”

Liz pulled a face in disgust, “you sicken me”

“What can I say I’m full of pleasant qualities like that” he commented wryly.

Liz shook her head, “You are so completely and utterly full of it”

“I know” Max smiled at her shrugging his shoulders, “Liz, tell me, do you even find me attractive in the slightest” he looked at her “because I think you are very…very…” he sighed and concentrated on the road.

“what?” Liz narrowed her eyes.

“what?”

“You were about to say something- I am very...very…what?”

“Oh”

Liz waited, “so…?” she gave him a questioning look

“I forget”

Liz clenched her fists together, “let me tell you something Max you are very, very, frustrating” Liz leant back against the car seat, closing her eyes in frustration, taking in the aroma of the leather seats, when she opened her eyes she saw Max chuckling to himself.

“Whats so funny?”

“you”

“glad you find me so amusing when I’m feeling angry, it really works in your favour”

“angers bad” he commented.

“Sorry, baaad me I’ll have to try and be a good girl just for you”

“No I like naughty” he drawled.

Liz narrowed her eyes not missing the double meaning; he really had a way of turning the conversation around in his favour. She crossed her arms and sat with a scowl on her face, which seemed to amuse Max even further. Liz couldn’t stand this, she had the greatest urge to open the car door and jump out of it moving.

“So you going to answer my question?” he prodded, after a few seconds.

“No”

“you don’t find me slightly attractive at all- I mean yesterday--”

“I told you yesterday is done and dusted, we all make mistakes”

“You pounced on me, that must have something to do with my limitless sexiness”

She felt a smile touching her lips; finding his humour weirdly amusing.

“I was drunk- I didn’t know what I was doing and plus you have big ears” leaning forward she flicked his ear with her middle finger.

Max looked surprised, then pouted playfully, “you don’t find them cute?”

“No”

“oh” Liz wondered if the look on his face was disappointment or if he was just playing with her. She hoped it was disappointment this guy really needed to be down a peg or two. There was silence as they continued to drive,

“what else frustrates you about me, since we’re going to be married I guess I better make a list to tick off” Max added as an afterthought.

“You really want to know?”

“sure”

“you planned everything without informing me- that was such a terrible thing to do Max, last night I almost fainted when I realised what was happening…the whole engagement party and I had no idea…that really, really pissed me off”

“that’s it?”

“that’s not enough?” she asked with creased eyebrows.

Max pulled in outside her house; “I guess I’ll have to inform you, before hand then” he said placidly, turning off the engine, twisting his head to look at her.

“I guess you will” Liz reached to undo her seatbelt, “thanks for the lift- despite you forcing me, I doubt I would have been able to walk all the way” she began fumbling the seatbelt, “If..I could...get this…damn thing open..”

“Here let me” Max leant forward then, his body shadowing over hers, he slowly undid the seatbelt bringing it up around her, his hand brushing her breast in the process. Liz felt herself stop breathing, leaning hard against the car seat, “Bye Max” she quickly moved forward and fumbled for the door handle.

“wait”

Just as Liz turned her head, Max shot in and kissed her, Liz froze but instead of pulling away she felt herself responding. Feeling, not thinking….Max kissed her softly, parting her mouth with his tongue, slowly inserting it stroking her tongue softly. Liz felt herself falling into the softness of his kiss, she caressed her own tongue against his, his mouth sending chills of pleasure through her body.

She heard a murmur, “what?” she whispered against his lips.

“…I said kissable, very, very kissable” Max leant in further, his hand in her hair bringing her closer to him. Amidst the caressing of tongues a thought shot through Liz's head, she shouldn’t be doing this…this was an arrangement, just business….she opened her mouth to say something only to feel his tongue slide in further. Leaning back, one arm behind her Liz opened the car door, stumbling outside, breaking the kiss, before Max could stop her.

“You have to stop that!” she yelled, “I think your forgetting something Max- this is a business arrangement”

“I haven’t forgotten Liz- but who said we can’t mix work with play?”

Liz was slammed door in his face and made her way around to the sidewalk. “I’m telling you don’t do that again, or, or…I’ll be pissed”

“You enjoy it as much as I do”

“shutup Max”

“Can’t really blame the drink now can we?”

“Bye Max” Liz turned to walk away because there wasn’t anything else to say, why did she respond? Why didn’t she just slap him around the face?

“we’re getting married next Thursday”

Liz stopped in her tracks, turning around slowly, her mouth almost touching the ground, “WHAT?”

“Thursday” Max smiled up at her “You said you wanted me to put things past you first, so that’s what I’m doing, next Thursday at Steeple church just at the edge of the Cotswold, only very close family and friends are invited. I thought that would be more convenient, you’ll feel more comfortable and things will be over and done with quickly- then we can travel to London in the evening”

Liz was having trouble closing her mouth. The nerve of this man was beyond her, “Huh? Wait- hold up, what? - we’re getting married next week?” she gaped at him.

“Yes” he smiled back proudly as if he had done something worth getting a pat on the back for, “it has to be as soon as possible, it won’t be long until your showing…and if this is to be kept a carefully planned secret then everything should be arranged as soon as possible”

“I can’t believe it!” Liz felt herself as always reacting to him, “I cannot believe you didn’t tell me! You- you…ahhh!” she stomped her foot on the sidewalk, not being able to find the words that described the depths of her frustration.

“I’m telling you now aren’t I?” he looked confused, unsure why she was making such a fuss.

“Max..” Liz put her head in her hands, and then put her hands through her hair and took a deep breath counting to ten before she responded. “I’m going home now” she couldn’t talk to him anymore, she needed to hit something and she had a feeling it would be him if he opened his mouth again.

“I’ll see you on Thursday Liz”

Liz stood in absolute shock on the sidewalk as Max drove off, when she thought she was beginning to figure him out- that maybe she could learn to like him just a bit, he pulled out another one on her. It was unbelievable. Max Evans was a total jerk.

“Liz!” Maria came flying through the side doors, waving something in her hand “Liz! Where the hell were you last night? Actually don’t answer me -I know- and here's me thinking you were going to break the whole thing off and here you getting married on Thursday!” she waved the Times newspaper in front of her face. Liz grabbed it only to see her name on the front page, eyes wide she quickly flipped to the referring page and saw her face splashed all over. Kissing Max. “Oh god” Liz quickly sat down on the sidewalk, feeling a wave of dizziness going through her. This was too much. Pictures of her and Max, she could have sworn half of them were cropped and an article about the Evanses and the marraige.

Everybody knew before she did.

“Looks like someone was horny huh?” Maria grinned sitting down beside her, “who’s that” Maria pointed to a smaller picture of Max and a blonde haired female, then referring to the caption underneath, "business partner?"

“Tess” Liz said in scorn, “business partner and a close friend”

“friend? huh?” Maria asked with raised eyebrows instantly sensing her friend’s discomfort “she looks like a big tramp- I can tell… its called womanly intuition… though looks like someone went way past the just friend stage last night?”

“What are you talking about?” Liz replied a little too quickly, was it all over the papers? It couldn’t be….

Maria leant forward and brushed Liz’s hair out of the way, “here” she pointed to the bruise on Liz’s neck. “Wow, looks like someone was hungry and used you for a snack, that ones a whopper if ever I seen one”

“What?” Liz pulled out a compact case from her bag and sighed at the hickey that was quite apparent as evidence of the little session last night.

“oh… Its really not what your thinking” Liz bit her lip.

“It isn’t? well you’ve got a hell of a lot of explaining to do, because I sure as hell am not going to believe ‘it was a mosquito bite’ excuse”

Liz shook her head and stood up, “uh” she began walking toward her house, “ I’ll spill all” she didn’t really have much choice, this was Maria, “over a breakfast of coffee and painkillers”

Maria quickly got up and followed. “I want all detail, little by little, bit by bit, caress by caress”

“great” Liz muttered, “nothing like reliving the best night of my life”

“Really?!…it was that good?”

TBC- Next time -The wedding day.


[ edited 6 time(s), last at 18-Jul-2002 7:55:17 PM ]
posted on 25-Jul-2002 11:11:43 AM by babybunny
The part will be up in a second- though firstly I wanna comment on the feedback.

Lana Lane- Thank you so much for such wonderful comments! It really brightened up my day. Wow, I’m gushing I’m really chuffed that you guys find Max so adorable.

Jassy Bee -Wedding night sex is the best isn’t it *wink* believe you me- I want them to have sex as much as you do. We’ll get around to it, scouts honour!

Dane122- I’m not really sure about how many more of the other Roswell characters I’m going to introduce at the moment, I guess I’ll see how it goes….though it would be pretty cool to somehow fit the whole Roswell cast in it *wink*

SarahWhitman- I really like the devils advocate playing. hehe

mermaid girl, bubbles,Araxie HRH
I guess those questions will be answered throughout the fic.

BRB!



[ edited 2 time(s), last at 25-Jul-2002 1:22:19 PM ]
posted on 25-Jul-2002 11:51:10 AM by babybunny
Marriage of convenience

Part 6



The feeling of butterflies fluttering in Liz’s stomach was becoming stronger and more coherent. She stood in front of the dressing room mirror, gazing at the brunette, doe eyed girl reflected back at her, wearing a white silk wedding dress that caressed every curve of her petite body up to her waist, where it then flowed abruptly from the hips. She had seen it in a shop just two days on one of the hectic shopping trips Maria had taken her on this week and had instantly fell in love with it, it reminded her of the one her mother had worn on her wedding day from what she had seen in the photographs. The girl gazing back looked rather calm, but only the she knew what she was feeling, the turmoil inside her becoming more and more insistent as the hours drew closer.

Last week had been absolutely hectic; as soon as she had told Maria about the wedding, Maria had gone on an instant rampage taking her shopping everyday. Though everything else had been organised and carefully constructed by Max, so clothes was the only real thing that she had needed to worry about- and today was her wedding day, Elizabeth Anne Jolene Parker’s wedding day. Today she was getting married…so why did she feel like she was making the biggest mistake of her life?

“Ohhh not again” she felt that familiar feeling at the back of her throat and Liz made a run for the bathroom leaning against the toilet and heaved again, only dry heaving, she had been doing that all morning.

Maria picked up her brides maid dress from around her ankles and followed Liz into the bathroom handing her a towel, “You okay chica?” she glanced at her worriedly, “You’ve been doing that all morning”

“morning sickness”

“its almost midday”

Liz sighed wiping her mouth, “I know, I guess its nerves too- I’m just kind of expecting that unexpected”

Maria sighed and knelt down next to her friend, “You don’t have to go through with this you know- I’ll just go right out there and tell Maxwell to shove his indecent proposal up his cute butt and that its over, done, finito- I’ll-“

“No” Liz looked down at her belly, “I’m going to do this Ria- and don’t you worry I’ll be fine, we’ll be fine” she answered wavering her hand over her still flat belly, “trust me I can look after myself and my number one priority is this baby- I’m going to do all I can to give it a head start”

Maria still looked unsure, “but-“

“but what?” Liz made her way back into the dressing room, blushing the hair appliances and makeup out of the way and sat down on the bed, “Maria I got myself into this and I can handle the situation- don’t worry about me”

“But Liz I do! I can’t help it..I need to make sure your okay- but I can’t do that when you’re all the way in London and I’m going to university in Scotland this summer”

“Maria! I’m going to be fine”

“- I guess I’ll have to come with you- do you think I’d fit in that suitcase-“

“Maria-“ Their ranting was cut off when little Abby, Maria’s 13 year old mouthy and extremely spoilt cousin entered the room, holding a mongrel kitten tight in her arms, she had found it on the street a few weeks back and refused to go anywhere without it. She was wearing identical clothing to Maria, a long burgundy bride’s maid gown with a white flower brooch.

“Here she is” Mara groaned, “Liz out of all people in the world you chose Abby to be your brides maid? Really what were you thinking?”

“Shhh” Liz whispered, “she asked me…I didn’t have the heart to say no and plus she’s a sweetie”

“No- she really isn’t”

“stop talking about me!” Abby plonked herself between them, stroking the kitten ferociously in the middle of its head. She took the kitten absolutely everywhere; Liz noticed that the middle of the cat’s head the fur seemed to be receding, she wondered if that was due to the fact that all Abby seemed to do in her spare time was stroke it between its ears.

“Get that mangy cat away from me” Maria squealed, “Who knows what disease it’s got”

“Not as many as you’ve got” Abby rolled her eyes pulling out some bubble gum from her hand bag and shoving it in her mouth.

“why do you have to take that thing everywhere with you? Its disgusting”

“she is not!” Abby yelled defiantly, “your disgusting!” she pulled a face at Maria and
turned to Liz, “you look so pretty I want a dress like that, instead I got stuck wearing the identical one to Tweedle Dee”

“Watch it …Tweedle Dum! I poured my sweat and guts trying to make that dress”

“its kinda tight”

Liz couldn’t help but laugh at the rowing going on between the two girls, Maria, like her didn’t have any siblings, but Abby made up for any sibling rivalry that Maria may have missed, “can’t you guys just call a truce for one day- for me?”

“Not really” Abby blew a large pink bubble, “Darling wouldn’t approve- “ Abby commented looking down at the kitten who pawing at her dress, “Would you Darling?”

Darling scowled and Maria moved backward, “Keep away from the witches cat Liz, she’s dangerous”

“She is so not dangerous!” Abby frowned,

“How do you explain this” Maria pointed to a number of scars down her right arm, “this and this- she’s a dangerous stray”

A smirk crossed Abbys face, “shes not dangerous its just that like me, she just thinks you’re a dog”

Maria picked up a cushion and threw it at Abby’s head. Abby screamed, in that instant Darling jerked up in fright, letting out a terrifyingly loud scream and flying on top of Maria in one jump.

“Ahhhhhhhh! the cat! get it off me!” Maria screamed grabbing roughly at the kittens fur. The kitten in return screeched even more insanely clawing at Maria.

Liz ran over to her trying to grab the kitten off of her, “Here…kitty..here …ouch!” Liz pulled her hand away fast, “ouch it just bit me” she yelled looking at the reddening marks on her left hand.

“Maria screamed “Owww Liz! It’s eating me!- do something”

Liz tried picking it up but it seemed to be clawed onto Maria’s dress. “Liz my dress, my dress, my fucking dress!”

Liz looked at Abby helplessly, “Do something Abby!” she had no idea on how to get the aggressive kitten off of Maria.

Abby ran her fingers through her hair, “did she mess my hair up?” she glowered slitting her eyes at Maria who was now tumbling around on the floor, “ I hate it when my hair is messed!!”

“its fine” Liz breathed trying to catch the possessed kitten, “your hair is NOT messed up…please help her”

Abby walked forward and picked up the cat, miraculously as if in some kind of trance the kitten instantly stopped clawing, becoming passive little cute thing once again. “Here now… here now” Abby gently stroked the kittens head as a mother might stroke its sleeping baby,

Liz looked at Abby and her kitten in shock before kneeling down beside Maria, “you okay?”

“Better now, that devil womans kitten is off of me” she answered taking deep breaths.

Abby stuck her tongue out at Maria, whilst walking out, “the only reason I came within ten yards of you was because the cars here to get you to the church” she slammed the door behind her.

Maria took a deep breath picking herself off the floor, “What did I tell you? The mongrel cat is possessed, did you see it attack me Liz? I’m phoning the pound as soon as the wedding is over- “ she stood up and turned to look in the mirror, “they’ll take that cat away…OH MY GOD!”

“What?” Liz ran toward her, “What is it?”

Maria began making weird noises at the back of her throat, “m-m-m.. my dress, look… at… my… dress!”

Liz’s eyes nearly popped out when she saw a hole protruding right in the middle of Maria’s dress, here it was- disaster number one.

“ehh..the dress!” Maria looked like she was hyperventilating, “How am I…I mean you…gunna walk down the isle without a bridesmaid?”

“Maria be calm! I still need you as my bridesmaid, we’ll do something…we’ll sort it out..” Liz tried to calm down her beating heart, inspecting the front of Marias dress, it had a gaping hole giving a full view of her belly button. This was all Max’s fault, why couldn’t they just get married in the registrar office instead of putting her through this hell?

“how?” Maria whispered, “We have to go…and I’ve got a hole in my dress, Liz I’ve just ruined your wedding day, your best friend has just ruined your wedding day!” she took hold of Lizs arms “Please forgive me”

“No! Ria..calm..be calm” Liz tried not to panic, searching around the room for something that might be useful to cover the hole.

The door swung open again and both girls turned to see Mr Parker standing in the door way looking very handsome in his black tuxedo, he smiled looking at Liz with a proud glint in his eyes, “Lizzie we have to go now”

“Just a second father” she picked up the bouquet of roses that Maria was meant to be holding, “Just…hold them in front of the hole thing”

“Right” Maria held the roses in front of her belly, “Right…”

“Right it looks fine…” Liz gulped.

"Right” Maria breathed, holding the bouquet tightly to her the hole in her dress, “I’m ready” she walked out continuing to hold the bouquet to her belly. Mr Parker gave her a puzzled look, before dismissing her as his daughters crazy friend. He held out his arm to his daughter and Liz took it, feeling her nerves begin to jingle louder.

*****

Mr Parker took his daughters arm and Liz looked back up at her father feeling a lump stick in her throat. Weddings made even the most strong gutted feel emotionally drained… but this wasn’t just about a wedding, it was the fact that this was all a debacle..a show and most likely in even less then a year this would be over…and here he was- her father feeling so proud, looking down at her as if his heart might burst with joy.

“This is it then” Liz took a deep breath, and looked ahead at the rows of people that she didn’t know and further ahead Max with his best man, waiting for her.

Mr Parker looked down at his beautiful daughter and almost felt himself lose control, “He’ll look after you Lizzie, you’ll be so much better off…I can’t believe my little girl is getting married…so soon”

Liz smiled right back into her fathers eyes and kissed him on the cheek, feeling her eyes fill up.“Ready?” she smiled at him showing him a façade of calm, when really she was quivering in and out.

Mr Parker remotely nodded his head, awestruck at the beauty of his daughter, that seemed to be magnified times one hundred today.

The wedding orchestra sounded and Maria gave Liz’s arm a gentle squeeze before following Abby down the isle, holding on intensely to the bouquet of roses in front of her dress. A row of heads turned to look back at them and Liz looked at her father, “I love you dad” she whispered as they began walking to the front slowly.

Max turned around to see her walking toward him, she looked like a fairy tale princess, floating toward him, that innocence, that beauty, he gazed at her awestruck. She was enough to make anyone heart just stop beating.

Liz looked around nervously then looked straight at him, her eyes met with Max and she smiled, despite everything that had happened between them, she had decided she was going to let it go today. Today was her day. She could be angry at him later. She smiled and and took her place beside him, the music stopped and she looked in to his amber eyes in silence.”hey” Max smiled, “You look beautiful”

The priest spoke and everybody was silent when the vows were said; they passed in what seemed like a blur to Liz, a number of emotions passing through her at the same time....Guilt for betraying those that she was close too…no one knew the whole story apart from The Evanses and Maria, happiness that she was doing something that took control of her own actions, she was building a future for the baby but also uncertainity of the future…Max, yet that sense of excitement that came with it.

“In as much as you have each pledged to the other your lifelong commitment, love and devotion, I now pronounce you husband and wife, you may now kiss the bride”

The words rung in Liz’s ears, loud and clearly, in that much Max’s lips were on hers and she was kissing him back. Just imagining for that one second that she was really getting married, that she really was that fairytale princess and that this fairytale wedding was really happening to her…it wasn’t so bad to dream that this was actually her ‘real’ wedding was it?

There was an uproar and lots of clapping Max took her by the waist leading her outside, Liz just let him lead this time, there was no struggling or battle of wills because she was pretending that this was her wedding and it was for real.

Max hadn’t lied about inviting just family and friends…just that he seemed to have a hell of a lot of them. But thankfully there was no press Max had carefully planned everything so they were thrown off. Liz thanked her lucky stars for that, she had always been one to keep pretty low profile and the press made her extremely nervous.

Walking out into the gardens reality hit her just as the sun did. She looked at the blur of faces gushing at her around the lawn and felt that apprehensive feeling take over.

“Max, Liz!” Isabel kissed them both and squeezed Liz’s shoulder tightly, “Wow” she actually looked genuinely happy…

“Hey Mrs Evans…” Maria appeared smiling, one hand holding the bouquet of flowers tightly against her, she put her free arm around Liz and squeezed her tight, “Your married” she stated, then sniffed, rubbing at her eyes, “You” she glared at Max, “you better treat her right- I swear if I ever hear one word of complaint, you’ll have me to answer to” she sniffed again.

A smile appeared on Max’s lips, “scouts honour”

“Good” Maria looked down at her trembling hands,

“Ria are you crying?” Liz raised her eyebrows.

“No…” Maria shook her head wiping at the tears forming in her eyes, “I have...something in my eye…” she turned away and ran toward the bathroom. Liz looked after her friend and felt a sinking feeling in her own stomach…the whole thing was slowly beginning to dawn on her now. She was going to leave those she loved most.

“Congratulations!” Liz looked up to see piercing blue eyes looking down at her.

“Thank you”

Tess smiled that overtly bright smile, “wow, Max..married…never thought that was something I’d see in this life”

Liz smiled back. Maybe she had overreacted on the night of the engagement party, Tess didn’t seem to be the dragon as she had formerly thought her to be.

Max cleared his throat, “I...am still here you know Tess”

Tess laughed, like he had said the funniest thing ever, “I know” she winked, “ don’t think any woman could miss you”

Max smiled glancing at Liz, she had been so quiet today, but he had been expecting as much. He knew that she had been having second thoughts and maybe he had put her through this all a little too fast…

“Liz”

Liz blinked and glanced up at him for the thoughts that surrounded her. For the baby, she found herself constantly repeating, you’re doing this for the baby.

“Yes” she looked up at him.

“Something wrong?”

Liz smiled, “No., No…I’m fine” she shook her head, shaking those nagging thoughts at the back of her head away, this was for the best.

“Good” Max gazed down at Liz his eyes flickering.

“Darling!!” Abby ran to Max and Liz screaming the name at the top of her lungs.

“huh?” Max asked confused, he recognised her as one of the bridesmaids.

“Liz! I’ve lost Darling!!” she screamed in urgency.

Liz looked at Abby a moment, “You lost her?” the girl had insisted on bringing the kitten along, crying the house down when her mother refused, they had to finally agree, when Abby had insisted either darling or no brides maid.

“I’m sorry Abby…I have no idea where she is”

Abby stamped her foot and ran away, screaming the kitten’s names at the top of her lungs.

Max shook his head in amusement, “I’ve enjoyed meeting your family” he grinned in his usual sarcastic tone.

Liz raised her eyebrows and smiled at back at him, “Wish I could say the same for yours” she muttered.

“Excuse me?”

“Nothing…”

“Look we better go cut the cake” Max looked at his watch, then back at Liz- “If we are to get this all done in time”

“Okay..” Liz nodded at him; Max nodded his head looking down at her. She really did look beautiful infact her could stand here all day and just look…

“Shall we go?” she asked with a smile around her eyes.

Max pulled at her waist and led her into the hall. Liz’s eyes widened when she saw the beautiful cake. It was so big, she counted, …5 parts with a cute little bride and groom and Max and Liz engraved on the top. “Its huge!”

“I take it you like?” Max took her hand and picked up the knife, “Well I’m glad that you at least like something I’ve done”.

Liz rolled her eyes, "I guess it'll do"

Max raised an eyebrow at her and then cleared his throat glancing around at the crowd of people huddled in front of him and Liz. “Well since we’re here and we’re cutting the cake- I guess it means that I’m married…I know a lot of you never thought you’d see this day” he gave Tess a look, “but it’s the happiest day of my life” he grinned down at Liz.

Liz looked back up at him; he was such a good actor. If she didn’t know his real motives she would have never been able to tell that he was lying. Just play along.... she told herself, smiling back into those amber eyes. It was easier to pretend it was true.

He cut into the cake and there was applause, but everything came to a sudden halt when there was a screech and a sudden noise .

A kitten landed in the cake.

“What the hell?” Max took a step backward.

“There’s a cat in the cake,” someone yelled.

Liz gasped; the cat began screeching loudly struggling with the cake. The cake splattered everywhere, all over the table, Max’s tuxedo, Liz’s dress.

“Someone do something!!”

“What’s going on” the major walked toward them curtly.

Maria screamed and ran over the cake, as the cat scrambled about, “It her! the…stupid..mangy..cat”

Darling!” yelled Abby, “what were you doing up there!!” she grasped hold of the kitten and held it to her tight, getting icing all over her own dress in the process.

“Abby!!” her mother yelled, “Get over here right now!”

“No I know your going to take Darling away from me, I know it!”

“Abby…”

“Abby get your little ass back to your mother now” Maria yelled.

“NO”

Maria ran forward to grab her cousin but instead found herself sliding on icing, “Shit” she groaned when she landed on her ass. Hopefully no one saw that...

“Oh dear lord” Isabel rolled her eyes, she walked over to the brides maid girl and gave her a hand, helping her up, “You okay? what hell happened to your dress?”

Maria gasped as the disastrous hole was revealed to all, “Its..uh…a part of the design?” she grabbed the bouquet that had fallen on the floor, sticking them in front of her dress then grabbed struggling Abby by the arm “I am going to kill you”

Liz stiffened looking at the chaos around her. She turned to look at Max , this was awful- so awful….absolutely disastrous. Max stared back at her unmoving, just hearing shouts of the others all around them.

She saw a slight smile appear on Max’s lips and found herself mimicking his expression and then giggling, they were laughing, both of them just laughing at the whole disaster scene around them. Max moved toward her taking her in his arms, “anyone for tea and biscuits?”

****

Liz was surprised at how well he had taken it. Max the perfectionist Evans, she thought he’s have a head fit, the whole thing had been an absolute disaster, but the fact that everyone had been so light hearted about it made it bearable.

“Well look at it this way, at least we’ll remember it ten years down the line” Liz laughed as she looked up at Max on the dance floor.

Max chuckled, “Glad that the press weren’t here- we’d go down as the worst wedding disaster in history….but Maria trying to cover up the rip in her dress with flowers..” he laughed, "clever girl"

“That was kind of my fault” Liz smiled innocently.

Max shook his head and twirled her around, then wrapping her arms around her once again, he had abandoned his icing covered jacket and was dancing with a few buttons undone of his shirt, he looked loser, freer and more relaxed.“Did I tell you how beautiful you look?”

Liz looked at him surprised, “You did…but you can tell me again, a woman never gets fed up of that comment”

“Okay- “ he began.

“Can you tell me in a second?” Liz rang; “because right now I really need to go to the bathroom” the one thing she noticed about being pregnant was that the toilet visits were a lot more frequent, but that wasn’t the only reason she had interrupted him…he was acting like they were married, all night he had been flirting and Liz realised with certain irony, she couldn’t let that happen…she couldn’t let him believe that it was anything more then an arrangement.

Max pouted, “I’ll be waiting”

Liz shook her head and made her way cautiously through the dance room, catching snippets of conversation here and there.

“I’m really so proud him” Mr Evans chimed, a little too loudly. Liz rolled her eyes, yeah right…

“The devil girl and her possessed kitten!” Maria screeched, “You know how babies don’t go anywhere without their blankies well she goes nowhere without this crazy cat she found on the street- I tell you its eyes glow red in the night"

“Ohh I love this song!”

“Darling is the cutest cat in the world mum! There’s no way I’m giving her up! “I swear it- you’ll lose me as a daughter!”

****

Liz made her way out of the cubicle and sighed, whilst leaning against the door the day was taking her toll on her. She was feeling the pressure of waking at 5 this morning and it was getting pretty late now.

“Hi!” Tess wiped her hands with a paper towel, “well, well, well if it isn’t the glowing bride”

“Hey” Liz smiled back at her leaning over the sink; “enjoying yourself?” she got out a lip-gloss stick from her bag and began applying it to her lips.

There was silence for a few minutes and Liz looked up to see Tess standing behind her looking at her in the mirror- something about the look made her feel uncomfortable, she put the lid back on her lip gloss, gave Tess a weak smile and began making her way out.

“Do you like sharing?” she asked suddenly.

Liz turned back to face Tess, she had no idea what she was talking about. She looked down at her lip-gloss stick and back up at her, “Do you want-“ she held it out to Tess.

“I said do you like sharing?” Tess repeated not even glancing down at the lip-gloss that Liz had held out. Liz was feeling greatly uncomfortable. Tess was usually all happy and smiling, but the look in her eyes now was scaring her. There was no warmth in them at all.

Liz shrugged her shoulders, “I suppose” what kind of question was that?

“Oh” Tess raised her eyebrows and looked around the bathroom, “I don’t…I really..really don’t like sharing” she glared at Liz.

Liz felt coldness recede through her body, “What are you talking about Tess?”

Tess looked her up, like Max she had a type inner poise and power, which reeked authority, she made Liz feel like a helpless little midget.

“Go figure” she gave Liz one of her overtly bright smiles then and brushed past her. Liz turned around, her eyes following the bundle of blonde curls. She had no idea what she was talking about….

TBC

Again, thanks for such great feedback.(answers to some of your questions on page 25) Every single comment is appreciated I’d like to thank you all individually- but then I’d miss someone out and they’d be mad at me.

See you guys next time!


[ edited 4 time(s), last at 25-Jul-2002 2:25:56 PM ]
posted on 1-Aug-2002 7:39:59 AM by babybunny
Talena, Alien 614, DrEaMPrYnCeZz -welcome, always cool to have new readers
IzzyLizzard- I have the fic planned out in a certain way and the M/L bonding will come too.
Araxie HRH- I guess everyone is entitled to their own opinions. Its cool, because all feedback- even critical is appreciated, as this is my first fic, I’m trying to better my writing as I go along
Sarah Whitman- I said I’d introduce more Roswell characters, if I could find openings from them in the fic. I guess I’ll see how it goes.

This part is shorter but has a little more of Max POV, so tell me what you think.

Last time

“I said do you like sharing?” Tess repeated not even glancing down at the lip-gloss that Liz had held out. Liz was feeling greatly uncomfortable. Tess was usually all happy and smiling, but the look in her eyes now was scaring her. There was no warmth in them at all.

Liz shrugged her shoulders, “I suppose” what kind of question was that?

“Oh” Tess raised her eyebrows and looked around the bathroom, “I don’t…I really..really don’t like sharing” she glared at Liz.

Liz felt coldness recede through her body, “What are you talking about Tess?”

Tess looked her up, like Max she had a type inner poise and power, which reeked authority, she made Liz feel like a helpless little midget.

“Go figure” she gave Liz one of her overtly bright smiles then and brushed past her. Liz turned around, her eyes following the bundle of blonde curls. She had no idea what she was talking about….


Marriage of Convenience

Part 7



“Liz…Liz….” Someone continued to say her name in a insistent whisper, Liz sighed and slowly opened her eyes to see Max, lightly shaking her shoulder, rubbing the sleep out of her eyes, she sat up and looked around trying to take in the unfamiliarity of the atmosphere. The street lamps glimmering in the night sky shot past one by one as she rose to glance out of the moving car, she instantly noticed the hustle, bustle of the street around her- it was a lot busier then the country.

“We’re here” Max said from beside her.

“We’re in London?” she asked sitting up straighter and taking in the busy outside view.

“Yes” Max smiled at his bride as the car began to slow down and Liz leant forward in to look at the towering 3 storey terrace house in front of her. So this would be her home… she looked up at the house in awe, trying to envisage herself spending a lot of time there. It was strange for a lot of reasons but mainly because she had never lived away from home before and now when she was finally moving away it was with Max out of all people.

The car stopped and Max made his way out grabbing a few bags and motioning for her to follow. Liz slowly stepped out, feeling a little apprehensive; when had she fallen asleep? The last thing she remembered was waving frantically at Maria through the Limousine window whilst Maria yelled at her to call her everyday. The goodbyes had been pretty intense; as much as she had tried to put on a brave face she couldn’t stop that torrid sinking feeling in her stomach. What was it going to be like? Would she adjust? What if she and Max ended up killing one another? That didn’t seem like too much of an unlikely concept at times.

She followed Max, who had picked up a few of her bags and was walking toward the front door, he turned around slightly to look at her and gave her a small smile before the door was flung open and a wrinkly, but pleasant looking man stood in the entrance. A little smile instantly creased his tired looking face when he saw them both.

“Liz meet Arthur my housekeeper” Max smiled.

“Hello Arthur” Liz gave the old man a pleasant smile’ she liked his warm welcoming face straight away.

“Hello, hello Elizabeth…come in” the man smiled brightly and opened the door further for them to enter. Liz stepped happily inside only to feel herself being scooped up, “Max!” she screeched, “what are you doing?”.

Max continued to hold her to him chuckling to himself when Liz struggled, “don’t forget tradition now Liz, you are my bride and we’re newlyweds” he continued to hold on to her as much as she tried to struggle he only grasped her harder.

“Max…let me…” she noticed Arthur watching them from the corner of her eye and realised this must yet be another put on Max show. “Oh…tradition of course!” she gave Max a large smile and put her arms around his neck. Tight. Maybe she could cause him a little pain too.

They brushed past Arthur and Max haughtily carried her up the staircase, “I can see that you had a good rest in the car, which is good considering you won’t be sleeping much at all tonight” he looked into Liz’s eyes, grinning.

Liz felt her heart miss a beat, Max Evans was so darn seductive, it was wrong…she slowly leant down and breathed in his ear so it seemed she was whispering sweet nothings. “Max…the..wedding..over..so..quit the.. act..” she wrapped her arms around his neck. Even tighter.

Max continued carrying her, not seeming to notice her attempts at strangling him, “I have no idea what your talking about Liz..” he grinned down at her as they stood in front of the master bedroom, then kicked the door open with his foot, taking no notice of the surprised, now turning apprehensive expression on Liz’s face. He sauntered inside and kicked the door shut behind him. When he twirled her around Liz took subconsciously took in the room, it was nice…it was big and decorated with taste…walk in wardrobes.. an ensuite bathroom…a double bed.

A double bed. She felt her heart go into overdrive once again.

Okay, there was no way she was going to be sleeping with Max…absolutely no way…her heart began beating hard, she looked up at his face “Max…I hope your not going to try anything” she stuttered, trying not to sound too worried…no he wouldn’t would he? she bit her lower lip, gazing up at his face, trying to read his expression. But as always it was pretty impossible.

Max was slowly moving forward, Liz’s arms still round his neck, he leant forward falling on to the bed, with Liz beneath him, her hair splaying onto the soft cushion below her, her dark eyes looking up at him questioningly, Max noticed the way her mouth was half open inviting him to her, “No of course not Liz..” his eyes twinkled slightly at the way her sweet, soft breath was sending waves of pleasure down his body, only inches apart Max stroked a stray hair away from her face and gazed deeply into those dark beautiful eyes.

Liz stopped breathing, eyes were windows to the soul…and the way he was looking at her was making her melt, she licked her lips responsively, “good..” she answered staring at his soft, supple lips. “good”

“but..one wedding night kiss wouldn’t hurt…” he added huskily moving in to take Liz’s lips into his own.

Liz’s eyes widened when he dived in, “M-Max” she croaked, the trance breaking when he broke eye contact, with the utmost will power she could manage, she put her hands on his chest and pushed him away softly, Max leant back to look at her, and Liz thought she saw a hint of annoyance go through his eyes. “The room…” she began “the arrangement…the bed…I hope you realise that I’m not sharing…or sleeping…”

“Its okay Liz” Max sat up widening the gap between them, “this is your room” he looked at her casually, “my room is on the other side of the adjoining bathroom”

“Okay” she breathed a sigh of relief.

“despite what you may think of me, I do keep my word” he raised his eyebrows, “so in this case we won’t be sleeping together…though I’ll be close enough if you need anything” Liz looked back into those pools of amber and nodded her head, trying to stifle a yawn at the same time, now that the room arrangements were sorted, tiredness had hit her again. It was hard not to be after the mega-disaster day she had, had.

“Your tired” Max suddenly got up, “I should let you sleep” he began walking toward the bathroom, “I’m going to get a change of clothes- you can use the bathroom first”

Liz nodded her head and slowly clambered off following him into the bathroom, she watched Max disappear from the other side. So this was what it was going to be like, she wondered as she looked at her flushed face in the mirror, awkward moments and lots and lots of tension.

She began splashing her face with cold water, she didn’t want it be like this between them, she’d have to ‘talk’ to him sometime, but it always seemed such a power struggle…and Max was totally unpredictable, something she wasn’t too fond of. He changed moods at the drop of a hat, at times he was adorably flirtatious, at times annoyingly arrogant and at times he looked at her with that totally blank expression, something unreadable reflected from the depth of those eyes….and those eyes, they could coldly see right through you as well as warmly caress you inside and out; she felt a tingle going through her body thinking about the way he had been looking at her a moment ago. Max Evans was a mystery.

That was it, she realised, that was the reason why she always felt so frustrated around him, she couldn’t figure him out, he was like one of those pick a card out of a hat games, you never knew what you’d get.

Glad that she had reached a conclusion on the complexity of Maxwell Evans, Liz looked around the bathroom for toothpaste- she looked on the bathroom shelf, the bath side cupboard, there was none. She couldn’t seem to find it anywhere. Being the wealthy man that he was you’d at least think that he’d keep some toothpaste somewhere. But no, there was none.

Sighing she called out his name, “Max” she walked over to his side of the bathroom door and stood with her hand on the knob, wondering whether to open it or not, she decided against it. It’d probably end up being one of those excruciatingly embarrassing situations where Max was undressed and completely naked and…the door was flung open and she collided with Max’s naked shoulder, “hmmph” her nose touched bare flesh and instantly they both bolted backward.

Max folded his arms over his bare chest as he stood in front of her in his boxers. In boxers only.

“Liz?” he asked, “what is it…. something wrong?” he took a step forward, Liz automatically took one backward, trying not to look at the magnificent body of his, God he was absolutely perfect…why oh why did he have to have a body like that to go with that undeniable air of seductiveness. She took in those hard, taut muscles, wondering how much he had to work to look so good.

“Liz?” he repeated, “ are you in dreamland again?”

Liz gulped, “Do you work ou- I mean do you have toothpaste” she pointed toward the sink staring at the way that body rippled when he moved his head to look where her finger was pointing, the way his tanned skin glistened in the light, at the way his nipples…she shook her head, “I was uh…looking…and you don’t”

Max’s eyes met hers and she looked away, feeling almost guilty. He walked over to the sink and opened the small cabinet above it simply pulling put a full toothpaste tube handing it to her, “Oh..okay..” she nodded her head, “I guess I didn’t notice it…” she babbled, looking anywhere but at him or that body, feeling herself brighten at the smirk forming around his mouth. God, he was doing it to her again.

“If you want anything else…I’m right here”

“Its okay Max..you can go” she walked toward the sink facing away from him.

“you sure?....I mean not having trouble finding the toilet…the sink...the shower?” he drawled, “cause really if you need any help-any help at all..”

“-Max!”

Liz glared at him, smirking he slowly sauntered out of the bathroom, “Oh and yes…”his head popped back into the bathroom, “ to answer your question I do work out ….a hundred sit ups every night” grinning, he winked at her and closed the door behind him.

Liz rolled her eyes and tried to take the images of his body out of her mind. She slowly put the paste on her brush and bought it to her mouth, brushing slowly. This was wrong, she shouldn’t be thinking like this about the brother of whose baby she was carrying. “Liz you disgust me,” she murmured to herself, as she spat in the sink.

The bathroom door opened once more and Max walked in again with his toothbrush, picked up the toothpaste tube and applying it on his brush, he made his way beside her; hip touching hers and began brushing his teeth.
Liz glanced at him sideward and then down at where their hips connected feeling a sudden burst of frustration go through her, couldn’t he have waited until she had finished? she leant into the sink but Max leant down at the same time, “Shorry” he murmured and spat out the toothpaste froth from his mouth.

Liz waited for him to finish and leant down again, at the same time as Max decided to too, both of their heads colliding. Max looked in the mirror and grinned at her mischievously, feeling frustrated she banged her hips against his so that he stumbled sideward, she looked in the mirror to see his surprise followed by another smile.

Boy, he was in a good mood, despite the great disaster at the wedding too, she’d have thought Mr Plan-alot, would have lost it.

Max moved forward and grinning slightly pushed her out of the way, so that he was standing in front of the mirror instead,

“Hey!” Liz growled,

“You started it,” he said to her reflection in the mirror.

“I was here first” she elbowed him, “Go use another bathroom”

“I can use any bathroom that I want and I want to use this one”

“how convenient” she muttered scathingly.

“Yes it is, right next to my bedroom and all”

Liz stepped back and crossed her arms, “I’ll wait for you to finish”

“C’mon Elizabeth, don’t be greedy, learn to share” he grinned as he began washing out his toothbrush and then stood facing her with his hands on his hips.

Liz looked at the towering figure above her, and felt that his words had a certain familiarity. “Sharing” she turned to face him. Tess had mentioned something about sharing at the wedding too, what the hell had she been talking about?

“Mmhmm” he nodded his head, “and it wouldn’t hurt to let a smile play on those beautiful lips either”

Liz was only half listening,” do you like sharing?” she said ask an after thought,

Max raised his eyebrows in confusion, “What?”

“Oh” Liz hadn’t realised she had spoken out loud “Max..” she tilted her head to the side.

“Yes…”

“Tess”

“Yes?”

“She’s a friend right?” Liz wasn’t sure why she had brung it up, but she had a feeling that their was some kind of double meaning in Tess’s words, something that she had seen in the girls eyes hadn’t seemed quite…sane.

“I guess” Max shrugged his shoulders, wondering where this was going. “She’s worked with me a while so we’ve got to know one another”

“I’m not sure if I like her…”

Max was surprised at her forthrightness, “I could tell, I figured that out at the engagement party- she isn’t all that bad”

“So you keep saying in her defence”

“I just know her that all” he dismissed it with another shrug of his shoulders and began walking to his bedroom

“….how well?”

Max turned back to look at her a while, that unreadable expression on his face again, “better then you do”, he opened the door to his bedroom and walked inside, taking the open door as an invite Liz followed him, but ventured no further then the boundary after the bathroom door.

Max pushed the duvet out of the way and sat down on the bed, one leg inside the covers and one leg dangling toward the floor. Liz’s eyes couldn’t help but scan the contours of his body once more, “better then I do…” her eyes met his, “is that meant to make me feel better?”

Max sighed, inhaling deeply and falling down on to the bed, both his hands under his head, “here it comes, I knew it would be here sooner or later” he lazily stared up at the ceiling.

“What?” Liz asked with a puzzled expression,

“the married nag-athon, where you want to know every last detail of my life inside and out, where I’m going, what time I’m coming home, how many minutes I spent at the convenience store- where you think I’m having sex with every girl you see me talking too including those I look at or walk past” he chuckled to himself, “but I guess I should have expected as much”

Liz shook her head fiercely; “ I did not say that- in fact I don’t care- I’m just trying to talk to you about something that’s bothering me, but since you don’t give a damn, I’ll be going” she turned around to walk away.

“Liz…wait” Max sat up, with a more serious expression clouding his face, “did something happen?” he remembered the night of the party; Liz had not reacted too well, to Tess’s comment. Maybe Tess had made another joke and Liz had taken it the wrong way.

Liz sighed, how was she going to tell him this? It seemed so trivial, she couldn’t just come out and say, she asked if I liked sharing, how stupid would that sound?… “well..um" her eyes locked with Max’s, "she asked if I liked sharing”

Max continued to look at her as if waiting for more, “So…?”

Liz shrugged her shoulders, “What kind of weird freaky question was that?”

Max shrugged his shoulders, “Don’t ask me, I’m confused enough with women as it is…” he watched her yawn, “…Liz I think your tired” , maybe tiredness was making her read too much into things, after all today had been a pretty big day.

“don’t tell me what I am and what I’m not” she glared at him trying to stifle another yawn.

“early rise this morning?”

Liz nodded her head, rubbing at her eyes, aware of the careful shift in subject. “I’m not tired” she lied.

“Here let me help you” Ignoring her comment, Max rose from his bed and walked toward her, sliding his strong arm around her petite waist and letting his hand rest slightly on her lower belly, where a life was forming. The thought all of a sudden occurred to him as quite strange, his wife was carrying a baby that wasn’t his; it was his brothers, which made the whole situation seem even stranger. Shaking the thought out of his head, he ushered Liz through the bathroom and into her larger room, and sat her down on the bed.

Finally giving in because her eyes automatically kept closing and it was making it hard to argue, Liz let him sit her down on the comfy bed Today had been stressful to say the least and then trying to talk about confusing situations like Tess when Max obviously didn’t want to weren’t helping. Hell he was even more stubborn then she was.

Max leant in bringing his face level to hers, she could hardly keep her eyes open and here she was stubbornly defying any sign of tiredness. “Liz, where are your clothes? In which suitcase?”

She pointed briefly to the bag that Arthur had bought up whilst she was in the bathroom, it was at the far corner of the room and she had packed all her night garments in it, Max nodded his head, and Liz collapsed on the bed with a sigh, closing her eyes.

Max walked over to her bag and slowly unzipped it, thumbing through the vast array of nightwear she had packed. She had about twenty pairs, but he liked this one. Man, Liz would look good in this, he picked out a shimmery almost transparent pink nightie, admired its thinness and shortness and then nodding his head at the right choice he had made he made his way back to the bed- to see Liz curled up in a ball, fast asleep.

Smiling to himself he slid the duvet over her legs and stood silently taking in the essence of her beauty, “night Liz” he whispered, putting the nightie down on the side of her bed, just incase she woke up and wanted to change, he switched off the light before quietly making his way out of her bedroom as so not to disturb her. He guessed there’d be plenty of occasions that he’d have the chance to see her in that tiny, pink, transparent nighty now that they were married.

TBC...

[ edited 4 time(s), last at 1-Aug-2002 9:04:35 AM ]
posted on 5-Aug-2002 9:44:01 AM by babybunny
Authors side note-

Hey guys, just dropping by to say- hopefully a new part will be posted by tonight/tommorrow. I was meaning to work on this faster but you know how things come up and then all of a sudden time just flies past...

Oh and the nookie- who said this is NC-17 hmm?*angel**tongue*

Patience is a virtue people!


posted on 7-Aug-2002 4:25:46 PM by babybunny
I know that we all want M/L nookie, and since theres such high request for it- it will come! Just be patient…if you can. I just want to clarify, without giving away too much of the story, that yes- this is an M/L fic as you can see in the title^^…but that’s all im saying for now.

Heres the next part, hope you like!

Marriage of Conveniece

Part 8


Weeks had past since the wedding day, Liz pushed her way out of the tube and breathed a sigh of relief, welcoming the fresh air onto her face.

Carriers in hand, she walked across the darkening street, tired but pleased at her buys. After store hunting she had found the perfect cream coloured chiffon dress with a cute silver bodice, it cunningly worked on hiding her slightly growing belly, as well as emphasising her growing curves. It was perfect for the dinner part tomorrow night.

London was extremely busy, but she liked it, she liked the privacy the busyness gave her, just blending into a range of faces that were doing their own thing. No one questioned what you were doing or why you were doing it, it was extremely different from the country where everyone poked their nose into your business. London worked for her.

Busy was basically the word to describe how Max had been, to think that he worked a lot was an understatement on her part. He worked all the time, he’d often go to work before she had woken in the morning and came back just after she had gone to bed at night. She’d often hear him come in and grab something to eat before having a shower and going straight to bed.

It wasn’t very often that he came home before 6, though when he did, she worked on maintaining a cool polite business conversation between the two of them, it was all very civilised even though at times she felt there was more to his words and his penetrating gaze and she'd notice how he’d drop a kiss on her cheek here and there for no apparent reason. But Liz thought that was probably more due to her over active imagination and the tension she suffered when she was in his close company. Max, however never seemed to push her either, he was in actual fact pretty even tempered. Which suited her fine.

Liz was pleased at how well she had adjusted; there were really no worries. Maria called less then she had expected, because she was busy with university, but promised to come and visit whenever she had time. Her father had called her just yesterday to tell her he was going on an all expenses paid around cruise with the Major, she had been pleased that her father was finally taking some time to himself, but why he had decided to go with the Major, she had no idea.

Putting her parcels on the floor, she fumbled about for the house key and found them in her purse. Picking up the bags she inserted the key into the lock. Before she could open it, the door was flung open and a male arm grabbed her and pulled her inward, astonished she spun around to see Max glaring back at her.

“Where the hell have you been?” he snarled, giving her a look that made her drop her bags on the floor.

“Let go!” she shrugged his hands off her arm, “Now look what you’ve made me do” she yelled, looking down at her shopping on the floor. “Your lucky there’s nothing breakable” leaning down, she began retrieving her things. Why was he home so early anyway?

“Breakable?” he said in gritted teeth, “do you realise what time it is? Do you?” he walked around to face her, Liz instantly stood back up in response to the sound of his commanding voice, she slowly peered into his wild eyes, that were sparking up some inner emotion.

Even tempered my ass..”Yeah..its late, I know..”she began

“Its nearly 10.30 Liz!”

“Oh” Liz turned to look at the master clock behind him, so it was…

“I was so worried about you, ready to call the damn police!” he raged.

“Max please, I’m not a child”

“Well your sure as hell acting like it!”

“What era are you from?” she glared at him, “for gods sake, 10…30” she shook her head, dismissing him. what was his problem? He didn’t even have PMS as an excuse.

Max gritted his teeth once more, before grabbing her hand and sitting her down on the sofa. Liz struggled to get up, but he firmly placed his hands on her shoulders and sat her down again. “Now you listen to me” he glared at her with such intensity that Liz couldn’t help but nod her head.

Max let go of her shoulders and began pacing the room like some caged animal, his shirt half open, and a wild look in his eyes. “I’m not your jailer Liz! I’m not telling you what to do or what not, since you’ve been here, we’ve been living in a fairly civilised manner- because… that’s what you want, but this is too much, you’ve been out for god knows how long-”

“But…”

“Don’t you think Arthur and I even deserved a phone call…” he continued, “I phone every night- even if I’m at all late- don’t you think we deserve the same decency or respect? Arthur only works 9-6 but he’s still here because he's been worrying his ass off about you because you’re a selfish little…” he sighed, stopped pacing and looked at her tentatively trying to take control of the situation, “do you think you really should be wondering the streets of London, utterly alone, when you’ve been here only a few weeks…at this time- without telling anyone…in your condition?”

“I’m not a condition!” Liz sighed, frustrated- but still, she understood where he was coming from, she should have called, she just didn’t realise it was this late, “Okay, I’m sorry” she cringed, “the tube was kind of crowded”

“The tube?” he yelled up again, “Is there no end to your stupidity?”

“I am not stupid!” she yelled louder standing up to face him directly and folding her arms over her chest.

“Do you know how crowded that things gets? You have to continue to be stubborn just to get back at me, when you know that you could have gotten a taxi or asked for a driver, if that’s not stupid…”

Liz felt herself grimace and turn red, no-one talked to her like that and no way was she going to let him either, “ I’m so fucking sorry that I went out to buy a dress for YOUR dinner party tomorrow night…I’m sorry that I even got into this mess with you. . .I fucking hate you!” she yelled, before running up the stairs, into her room and flopping down on her bed, her head in her arms.

Wow that was a clever one, way to go Liz, make him even more furious... Great logic- that really proved what an adult you were.


Max watched her run away and felt and instant sense of guilt go through him, what was wrong with him? Why the hell was he talking to her like that? “I’m such an idiot” he muttered, “Damn it” he cursed again, he was angry at himself more then he was at her, but she made him feel so out of control and she was so darn stubborn.

Bending down he began picking up the bags that were strewn across the floor one by one.

* * * * * * * * * *

Knees tucked under her chin, wondering why on earth she had gone through with this stupid arrangement, Liz sat on the bed rocking to herself. Her stomach was continuously rumbling because she hadn’t eaten at all evening, but there was no way in the world she was going to go down there and face him. Hell she was even contemplating leaving.

The darkness of the room was interrupted by a dim light from the hallway when the door slowly creaked open and Max stood in front of it, slight shadow covering his body, making him look somewhat primal in his half open shirt, looking down at her with a penetrating gaze.

“Can I come in?”

“No you can-not,” she muttered, looking away from him.

“Liz…” he said softly, “I’m..” he took a deep breath, his voice lowering “I’m sorry..."

Surprised, she turned to look at his face, Max was apologising?

There was silence for a few moments before she spoke, “No don’t be” her eyes met his “I should be sorry, you were right I should have called…I just got kind of carried away -I forgot I guess”

“No- I shouldn’t have shouted at you like that, I shouldn’t have-“ he sighed, frustration glimmering in his eyes. Liz had never seen that look in his eyes before. A look the lowered him from that position that made him come across so powerful, a look that mirrored regret.

“Max” she found herself climbing off the bed and walking toward him, “Its okay..okay, you were mean to me” she shrugged her shoulders, “but I can be pretty evil too”

“Yeah…” a smile spent across his lips, “that you are” he looked at her shaking his head, “next time please take a driver . . .I was going crazy thinking something had happened to you . . .I want to make this comfortable for you Liz and your making it pretty darn hard for me”

“I promise …oh jailer,” she mocked. Max really had been worried about her and now she felt bad for bearing down on him, “next time I’ll take the driver”

“See- it’s not so hard to reach a compromise is it?” Max grinned; he reached behind him and held out a package to her, “since you’ve upset me so much and made me apologise, which I might add is something I rarely do…“

“I can tell-“

“Maybe you can give me a peep into how beautiful your going to look tomorrow” he held out the dress to her and Liz took it slowly from his hands.

“Okay, just to make it up to you for being such a bad girl” she smirked, walking over to the bed and placed the dress down before raising her sweater. Her head turned sideward and saw Max still standing in the doorway looking at her, “Max.” she bit her lower lip beginning to feel a little shy.

“Yes?” Max responded, taking in the side of her almost naked body.

Being so close in a half dark room and watching her undress was sending his male hormones into overdrive. He wanted to touch her so much, to feel her, to taste her skin, run his hands over her smooth body and send her into frenzy like she was doing to him now, without doing a damn thing.

“I have to get undressed” she felt the hairs on the back of her neck stand on end, he was doing it again. Looking at her like that.

“Okay” but instead of going away, Max moved forward, until he was standing in front of her, “where shall we start?” his hands moved to the bottom of her sweater, which was resting beneath her breasts and slowly tugged it upward, his finger tips brushing against her smooth, aroused flesh. He slowly pulled the material over her hardening nipples strained against her bra. Feeling his pulse fasten as he looked down at her perfect little breasts, he’d seen her naked before but had never realised how perfect she was. “You are beautiful,” he whispered, wanting so much to tear the material that was shielding her nudity from his gaze.

Liz felt a blush touch her cheeks at the way his gaze was caressing her, she looked downward, her breath quickening, “I didn’t mean that…” she hadn’t meant that she needed help undressing, she had meant that she wanted him to go because he was making her self conscious, yet she was letting him undress her…because… just because it felt strangely erotic.

Max slowly grazed his fingers across her belly before moving them upward and around, reaching for the strap of her bra. He paused for a second looking into Liz’s eyes, for any sign of protest, when he saw none he expertly unclasped the hooks revealing her to him fully.

Liz gasped at the way he trailing fingers were leaving invisible scorch marks along her body, he unclasped her bra and she looked into his eyes, heart beating fast, wanting so much for him to take her. She knew she wasn’t thinking straight, but all she could thing about was how she wanted him to touch her aching nipples.

Touch me, she wanted to yell. God what was he doing to her? She thought in her drunken like state. From her last sexual encounter she was certain that she was frigid, but Max Evans was making her feel the total opposite.

As if reading her mind, Max’s hand reached for her rock hard nipple, pausing before, slowly circling the aureole. His soft touch sent internal shivers down her spine; her legs turned jelly like and she couldn’t help the moan that escaped her lips. She had never been so turned on by a man in her whole life. Her body responded like she knew it would, her nipples burning in desire, and wetness soaking through her panties.

She leant forward and touched the side of his chiselled jaw in awe, like discovering him for the first time she glided her finger across the baseline, around the structure of his face and then up to his lips. I shouldn’t be doing this her head yelled, but her traitorous body did nothing but respond to him.

Max’s own erection was hardening and he pulled her to him enjoying the way he was making her react, he loved looking at the pleasure in her face, he took her pinkie finger into his mouth when she touched his lips sucking it lightly . Slowly he bought the other hand over her breast, pleased at the moan that escaped her lips when he touched their softness.

“Max…” she moaned with her eyes half closed and burning in desire for him, “don’t…” but instead of pushing him away, she intertwined her finger with his and pushed them harder against her breasts.

“Oh god...Liz” he groaned, taking the opportunity to spray little, urgent butterfly kisses along her face and neck when she turned it upward, Liz responded by crushing his large hand harder against the softness of her aching breasts.

“stop…” she sighed, her fingers tracing the contours of his hard chest through his open shirt, her hands moved lower to slightly graze the hard as rock member that was pressed against her belly.

Max let out a whoosh of air, “Liz” he groaned, kissing her all over her face and neck and began kneading her breast with his expert hands, only to hear her moan again in ecstasy.

Walking her backward he continued to kiss her all over, touching her, feeling her, caressing her soft body with his large hands. They reached the bed, Liz fell onto it reaching for his neck, Max followed suit raining kisses over her face, her eye lids, her nose, her neck. “I want you so much” he managed to whisper before his mouth met with hers once more, driving at each other with utmost passion.

All they felt were each other ,both minds zoomed into their world of passion, only wanting to hear, feel and know each other.

They both heard it, the insistent knocking at the door that tried to break the trance they were both in.

“Max” Liz moaned in between deep kisses and caresses, “someone’s at the…”

“I know” he continued to kiss, and drink her in, he’d never be able to stop touching her, “it can wait”

“Max” Arthur’s voice penetrated their passionate rendezvous, “You have an urgent phone call”

Liz gasped when she felt hot wet tongue on her exposed nipple “Its…. urgent” she moaned. What was she doing? The thought crossed her mind, as her hands played in his hair, tugging his havoc playing mouth closer to her breast.

“I…know” he sighed letting his tongue trail across her peeking tip. This was out of control , he had never needed anyone so. . . urgently.

“Mr Evans!” came the voice along with the knocking, “This is very important, its about your business trip to Thailand next week”

“Shit” Max groaned sitting up and breathing hard, “shit” he jolted out of the bed, “Liz- I have to” he gave her an apologetic look and straightened out his shirt before walking toward the door awkwardly, trying to calm his jangling nerves and aroused body.

Liz sat up, her gaze following him make his way out, trembling at what had just happened, “oh shit” she repeated his words, reaching down to pick up her sweater from the floor.

What the hell was happening to her? It was like she was possessed when she was around him; all her self-control flew out of the window. Her mind told her to stop and her body did the exact opposite.

Cursing herself she walked over to the closet and pulled out a towel before making her way into the bathroom to have a long bath, or whatever it took to cool herself down and push some sense into her crazy head.

*************

“Yeah…next week Tess…if you want…no…not yet..I haven’t told her yet” Max was still on the phone when Liz made her way downstairs.

She slowly made her way behind him, her hair still wet from the bath. She had decided she was going to be civilised about the whole thing, this ‘mistake’ that she kept making. She was going to lay down the rules, no more undressing, touching, looking…whatever it took them; before things got out of hand.

“Yeah…okay I will, don’t worry about that” Max turned his head and saw her standing there biting her lip and eyes turned upward as if in deep in thought. His heart jumped at how beautiful she looked, wearing the dress she had bought, it caressed her upper body like a second skin, then falling abruptly from her hips, cleverly concealing her growing bump. The shimmery colour highlighted her face fresh from the shower.

He was so awestruck at her innocent beauty that he forgot he was on the phone, “ yeah Tess I’m still here…look I’ve got to go now…yeah okay...yeah...bye, I’ll tell her…promise..yeah” he sighed and hung up the receiver.

Liz raised her eyebrows, “What was that about?”

“The business trip to Thailand next week”

“Ohh” Liz nodded her head slightly looking downward, was Tess going with him? Not that she cared…well not really…

“Well what do you know” when she looked back up, Max was at the bar, pouring himself a drink, he passed her a glass of orange juice and Liz took it from him, still refusing to meet his gaze. “You surprise me once again”

“Surprise you?” what had she done now? She wondered as she sat down on the leather couch.

“When I think you can’t look anymore beautiful- you go and do it again”

‘Yeah…right” Liz rolled her eyes at the line he had fed her, even though she had to admit it was flattering.

There was silence for a while both knowing what each other was thinking. She took a deep breath, wanting to get her feelings out into the open, “Look Max...about what happened...about what keeps happening”

Max raised his eyebrows, “What the…”

“Yeah” she cut him off before he could say anymore.

Max chuckled, “Yes?”

“We can’t keep doing it” she looked at him poignantly, “Look- when we do it, then one thing will lead to another and we’ll just end up doing it…so we can’t…do it”

Max raised an eyebrow, “Sex Liz…is the most natural thing in the world”

“I know…no its not…” Get a grip Liz “ Well whatever- I don’t want to do it with you”

“You don’t?” Max took another sip of his drink, “Well you really had me thinking different up there”

“Please Max, you know what I mean,” she added seriously, “stop turning my words around”

Max chuckled again; this time more at an internal thought then anything else. Maxwell Evans could have absolutely anything he wanted; yet he could not have the one thing he desired with a burning passion. Ironically his wife.

“I resent that” Liz pouted, “I’ve never thought of myself as much of a comedian, yet you continue to laugh at me”

Max gazed at her, “as you wish Liz” he rubbed the palms of his hands against his jeans, “Now there something I need to talk to you about”

“Oh?” Liz was still getting over the shock that he had relented to her ‘wish’ so fast, Max usually never gave up without a good argument or tease, “You know that I‘m going to Thailand next week”

“Yes…”

“Well I’ve booked tickets for two…because I’d like you to come with me”

Liz’s eyes shot up “me?”

“Yeah me and you, traipsing around Thailand…can’t be that bad can it?”

Liz bit her lip, “I can’t…I don’t…”

“Do you really hate my company that much?”

“No” she shook her head, “I just don’t want you to do anything unnecessary, I don’t want to be a burden”

“Believe me Liz” he walked toward her, crouching down in front of her, “far from it--And anyway I’ve got the tickets booked already”

Liz laughed, “there you go again, planning things without telling me”

He shrugged his shoulders “Which you’ve noticed, is a fault of mine”

“Bad habits can be wiped you know”

“Its not necessarily bad…” he mused, “If I wasn’t this way, you probably wouldn’t be here now, sometimes when you see an opportunity you’ve just got to grab it”

“So I’m an opportunity now am I?”

“A very good one” he grinned.

Liz gazed at him, trying to make clear sense of his words, she was an opportunity?…Of course…an opportunity to get the manor. Her stomach rumbled with hunger and this time she could do nothing to cover the disgruntled noise.

“Ah” Max stood up, “I’m afraid Arthur’s gone home, how about I cook you up something to eat?” He made his way over to the kitchen and Liz followed him inside sitting down at the table.

“I suppose, as long as I don't get food poisoning or diarrhoea"

Max turned to look at her from the open fridge, “you know Liz…I’m not guaranteeing anything”

Liz smiled and sat silently for a while, while he continued to bang pots and pans “You know Max . . . I’d like to come to Thailand with you” Even though he confused her to death, she was beginning to find that he wasn’t actually bad company.

TBC….



[ edited 2 time(s), last at 7-Aug-2002 5:04:56 PM ]
posted on 14-Aug-2002 6:55:57 AM by babybunny
Heres part 9. I have a feeling you guys are going to love Tess even more after this one.

Marriage of Convenience

Part 9



Liz slowly dragged the comb through her tangle of dark hair, newly wet from the shower she had just had. She sat in front of the mirror in her underwear, feeling a little apprehensive about today. Max had thrown a dinner party and had invited some ‘close friends’ to meet them. She just hoped that these ‘friends’ were nothing like his family. She didn’t think she’d be able to cope with anyone that resembled any traits similar to his family.

There was a knock at her door and before Liz could answer or jump up to get her dressing gown, Max walked in, looking breathtakingly handsome in his dinner clothes.

“Liz are you ready?” then his eyes fell on her half naked form, looking small, yet breathtaking in her rather see through underwear. Her dark eyes widened and she instantly, covered herself with her arms.

Max couldn’t help the grin that crossed his face, “Liz -its not like I haven’t seen you naked before”, in fact more times then one, firstly when that unfortunate incident had happened with his brother and again yesterday before they had been interrupted by Arthur. Man... yesterday could have progressed far, he thought with a reminiscent smile, because when it came down to it Liz definitely wasn’t timid. And yet here she was acting all flustered.

He walked over to the bed and picked up the dress that she had tried on for him the day before, “here” he handed it to her, and Liz took it instantly from him, flattening it over her chest to cover hers nakedness from his gaze.

“Just give me a minute Max- I’ll be down and ready” she blushed, despite everything she still felt a shy around him, it was just that affect he had on her.

“Okay” he walked toward the open door “You sure you don’t need a hand?” he turned back around giving her a cheeky smile, reminding her of what had happened when he had given her a ‘hand’ just the day before.

Liz bit her lip, “Get out Maxwell Evans! before this brush comes flying at your head”, with the other hand she aimed the brush at him.

“Two pair of hands work faster than one” he grinned, then jumped out into the corridor and slammed the door shut just in time to hear the clunk of the hairbrush against it.

Liz shook her head to herself, wondering when he’d learn that a no was a no. She pulled away the dress that rested against her breast and stood profile toward the mirror, running her hand a few times over the little bump that had begun to form, a reminder that she was carrying a life in there. Feelings of both pride and apprehensiveness went through her, everything she was doing was to give this little baby a better beginning, she just hoped with all her heart that it’d work.

Running her hand over her abdomen one more time she began getting ready for the guests. She blow dried her hair and let the length settle on her shoulders after pulling on her chiffon dress, which cleverly concealed any signs of pregnancy. She lightly blushed her cheeks and pulled on a pair of four inch gold sandals before making her way downstairs to meet Max.

She walked into the living room. Max was looking incredibly handsome his profile faced toward the window, hands in the pockets of the tailored suit of his trousers. The pure whiteness of his shirt lifting his chiselled features. He was looking outside with a somewhat wistful expression on his face, an expression that pulled at her heartstrings.

She knew that he was thinking something, because it wasn’t the first time she’d caught that intense expression on his face, she just wished that he’d open up to her and tell her what it was- the fact remained that despite him knowing almost everything about her, she hardly knew a thing about him. Especially his past.

Max felt a hand on his shoulder and turned around to see large chocolate eyes smiling up at him, he smiled down at her, taking in her beauty, shaking those many jumble of thoughts out of his head, he looked at her glowing in her dress and opened his mouth to say something, but instead found himself staring.

“Thank you” Liz smiled, the expression on his face saying it all, her insides were tingling at the way he was looking at her with such adoration, “You don’t look so bad yourself”

A small smile crossed his earlier, serious features, “Do you know who you remind me of?”

Liz dropped her arm from his shoulder, eyes twinkling she asked, “who?”

Max reached for her hand and gently took it in his, turning her palm upward, placing his thumb in the middle and stroking it gently “Back when I was a younger, the time that I looked forward to most in boarding school was Christmas, I used to go back to manor and each Christmas mother and I would decorate the whole manor and the large tree, situated in the hall”

Liz felt her palm tingle at the smooth unconscious strokes that Max was leaving against her skin, but he didn’t seem to notice as he reminisced in the past, his eyes dancing in some private memory that meant so much to him, “there used to be this beautiful fairy doll, right at the top of the Christmas tree- just out of my reach- I’d just sit and stare at it, wanting so much to reach it…to touch its ethereal beauty…to keep it as mine forever” he sighed and looked down at her, slowly bringing her small hand to his lips and letting them graze her softly.

Liz tilted her head to the side “Max” she smiled, shaking her head, that was the sweetest thing anyone had ever said to her “thank you, though I doubt that I’m worth that much compliment”

He looked down at the polished floor and back at her again, “Liz-your right, you can’t be compared to a doll its just that-“, he was cut off by the doorbell; “I’ll get that that” he looked away clearing his throat.

Liz looked up at him expectantly, wondering what he had been about to say. “I’d like to see it sometime you know”

“What?”

“The fairy….”

“You can’t- Andrew smashed it” with that he dropped her hand and walked past her, making his was to the front door to greet his guests.

*******

Liz was so laughing so hard that there were tears in her eyes, the introductions had been a little awkward at first but she had taking an instant liking to the couples in the living room.

The first to arrive had been Marlow and Angie McCoy, Max’s manager and wife. They had been closely followed by Max’s personal assistant Stuart- the scrawny looking guy whom she vaguely remembered from the night of the engagement party and Lisa his accomplice who he didn’t seem to like very much. . .Or so it seemed with the amount of bickering that was going on between the two. And lastly Petra and Anthony Wells whom Max had introduced as his ‘surrogate’ parents; what shocked Liz more then his sudden comment was the amazing amount of warmth in his eyes when he said it, she had never seen him address the Major with anything near to as much adoration.

Petra was a lovely woman, small, round and plump with a lot of wisdom in her eyes, Anthony on the other hand seemed like a fun man to be around but with very little tact, Petra had to keep correcting him or apologising and Liz found all their mindless natter comfortingly funny.

“And anyway so when Max told me, she he had gotten married- I thought he was having us on- In fact I was so shocked I had to get out another three bottles of whisky-” Anthony continued, taking another mouthful of drink, “Elizabeth are we gunna start eating anytime soon? I’m starved, if I don’t eat at a certain time my stomach starts giving me hassle”

Liz nodded her head, ‘Yeah Arthur was just waiting for the final guests to arrive-”

“Tony!” Petra shook her head, looking embarrassed, “sorry about this” she apologised on behalf of her husband once again.

“No its f-“ Liz began.

“What?” Anthony cut her off, unaware of the social difilement he was causing, “You’re the one that complains when I’m in the bog for too long”

“I don’t think its about your toilet habits anymore Tony” Max commented, “It’s more about how much room that stomach of yours takes up”

“And don’t ask how many times I’ve told him to join your gym Max, he never listens” Petra looked at her husband pointedly and then down at his round protruding stomach.

“Hey” Anthony commented stroking his belly, “Quit poking fun at my pride and joy”



Liz giggled and heard the doorbell as the hubbub of chatter started up once again. Figuring that must be the last guest, she smiled, excusing herself, picked herself up from the couch and reached the front door, opening it with a large smile on her face.

Blue eyes stared back, and her smile faltered. “Tess”

Tess smiled broadly; walking inside like some Prima Donna that owned the place, “Well hello there, looking- cute” she looked down at Liz giving her an unhealthily large smile.

Liz gazed up at the blonde haired woman as she shrugged off her mink coat, looking striking in her skin tight dress that matched her bright blues eyes exactly, and a neckline which dropped to her waist, showing off her womanly body. Liz felt like a little girl in comparison.

“Um do you want me to take your coat?” Liz asked, in attempt to be polite to her ‘guest’.

“No its okay” Tess shook her head, “I’ll be fine, I know my way around Max’s house better then my own”

Better then her own? Liz watched her walk away with narrowed eyes and a sinking feeling in her stomach, why did she have to be so…pretty? And Max’s business partner too? From the way she was talking Max invited her around quite a lot…it seemed that she had lived with him. Did that mean that Max had been in a serious relationship with her?

Her thoughts were confirmed from a further comment as Tess turned back slightly to look at her, “I have lived with him you know”

Liz’s mouth dropped and she followed the girl into the cloakroom, “what?” her mind was telling her to leave it, it was none of her business anyway, what did Max’s past matter to her? It was going to be over as soon as the baby was born. But part of her wanted to know more- was Tess more then a business partner? How much exactly did she mean to him?

Tess turned back around to face her, hands on her hips, “Oh he hasn’t told you?” she raised her eyebrows a small smirk forming across her mouth, “that’s understandable, I wouldn’t expect that he would. . . it makes girls a little jealous you know, especially since we’re partners and spend so much time in close proximity . . .fuels their over active imaginations. . .”

Liz felt herself grimace, she had the greatest urge to slap her then and tell her to get out of her house.

Noticing the expression on Liz’s face, Tess’s attitude took a turn, “Not you of course. . .” she laughed, “you know that I’m not talking about you- right?” before Liz could respond she stalked out of the room, the noise of her clanking heels surrounding Liz in the empty room.

Liz slowly walked back into the living room feeling a little disappointed. Not completely sure why- because it didn’t matter what Tess meant to Max. Why should it? It didn’t matter that they had, had some kind of full-blown relationship.

Which was probably still continuing.

Maybe part of her wanted to believe that Max had married her because…because maybe he had feelings for her? But that obviously wasn’t true, she noted as she stood in the doorway and watched Tess sit beside Max, her hand on his knee, whispering in his ear and making him laugh. He really enjoyed her company, she could tell and he trusted Tess- maybe even more then her. That time when she had accused Tess of maybe being two faced and having double meanings to her words, he had rushed to her defence saying that he ‘knew her better then she did’. Now she knew what it was all about. Max was in love with Tess and she was getting in their way.

Everything passed in much of daze and as the day progressed Liz felt herself sinking into a more depressive state, Tess never left his side and everything she said, Max responded to rather fervently as if it was the most important thing that anyone had ever told him. He occasionally looked up at her and smiled, playing the to role of the loving husband and Liz gave him half smiles back throughout the whole evening, playing it up with him but feeling sick to the stomach.

Why should she care what was going on between those two? She kept telling herself- but the truth was in that screwed head of hers did.

As the evening neared end, Liz found herself alone with Petra and Anthony in the living room whilst Max made a business phone call. The others had left just a few minutes ago. Liz had tried to hide the solemn mood that had settled in her insides since Tess’s arrival, but now even though she was gone, the reminder of her hands all over her husband and the way that goodnight kiss had been a little too long haunted her. Along with her parting words.

"I see your coming to Thailand with us” Tess had glowered, making Liz feel like she would be the odd ball tagging along with the two that were an item, “Well it should be fun-“ she waited until Max was out of ear shot and added, “just don’t forget that romance novel now will you sweetie, you might be spending a lot of time alone”

She was probably right. This was a business trip was none of her business.



“My, my what have you done to Max?” Petra asked, snapping Liz out of her daydream as soon as Max had left the room.

“What do you mean?” Liz asked quickly.

“He’s glowing”

“Its probably all that behind the scenes stuff he’s getting” Anthony chuckled, pouring himself yet another helping of wine. He hadn’t stopped drinking all day.

Petra raised her eyebrows at him, whilst Liz blushed. Only if they knew what was really going on. . .

“I know that Max is a hard nut to crack” Petra added warmly, “he’s a very private young man- but that’s understandable, especially with the family life he’s had. It was bleak”

“I figured” Liz nodded, even though he hadn’t really said as much she had figured from the little that she did know about his past.

Petra put her hand on Liz’s arm, “Anthony always doubted he’d settle down, but I always knew there was someone out there to love him and I was right- I can see him changing already Liz” her eyes twinkled with joy that any mother would have for her son and Liz felt a pang through her own heart. She was betraying so many people. .. It made her feel bad. “Don’t you see it?” Petra questioned her warmly.

Liz nodded her head, not wanting to break the older woman’s heart. ‘I guess”, she had to admit she had seen Max change a lot since she had known him, when he first proposed that day in her living room he had intimidated her …he had seemed so cold blooded and ruthless. But just this morning he was acting so caring and sweet, but she had put it down to some multiple personality disorder.

“I do” Anthony commented, “he was always such a rigid little brat”

Sighing at her husband and looking pointedly down at his drink, Petra continued to smile down at the beautiful young woman in front of her, such innocent eyes and child like face, but inside a woman of maturity. “Don’t worry about Tess”

Liz’s eyes flew up in surprise ‘huh? How did you- I mean what about her?”

“I know” she rubbed her arm gently and miraculously Liz felt a little comforted, “Tess maybe the business queen, but she’s awful at personal relationships, trust me”

‘Well it doesn’t seem it” Shoulders haunched Liz looked downward, especially the way Max responded to her, they could have been ones married for all she knew.

“What do three divorces say to you?”

“Three?” Liz gasped, “Wow- she doesn’t seem old enough”

The wrinkles on Petra’s face creased once more in a knowing smile and nodded her head, “Max has seen her through every single one and in between she’s made a play for him every time, he’s too clever to fall for her”

Maybe because he liked having her with no strings attached? Liz thought, from what she had seen there was definitely more then an ordinary business relationship going on.

“Look after yourself Elizabeth” Petra got up “I’ll see you very, very soon”

“Your going?” Liz’s eyebrows creased quizzically, she didn’t want the women to go just yet, she enjoyed her company. Petra had a quality of making her feel at ease, something she didn’t feel very often.

“Why are we going?” Anthony echoed.

“Because you my dear, have had way too much to drink” Petra helped her husband up, “I think we better make a hasty exit before he embarrasses himself anymore”

Liz smiled, walking them to the front door, “Please come back soon”

Petra gently put her hand on the side of her face, “promise”

After waving them goodbye, Liz stood silently in the front door looking into the night; the starry sky so large and luminous stared back at her. She felt warmth behind her and when she turned her head slightly to see Max standing close behind her, hands in pockets, a smile playing on his handsome features “You okay?”

“Fine” Liz nodded her head and walked straight past him, settling down on the living room chair and pulling her heels off, curling her feet underneath her and closing her eyes.

Max followed her and sat down beside her, “It was quite a success wasn’t it. . . the evening?”

Liz opened her eyes, did he ever care about anything apart from measuring the successes and failures of the false pretences he put people under? “Yeah great”

Max looked at her quizzically, sensing sarcasm and dejection in her tone, “What is it Liz?” Had he done something to annoy her and make her pull away again? “What have I done now?”

‘Nothing” she refused to play this game with him. And she had too much pride to say that she was feeling jealous of the fact that he loved Tess. When she had no right to be jealous.

Max slowly nodded his head, taking her attitude for tiredness “I was just on the phone to the hotel manager of the hotel we’ll be staying in Thailand- its an amazing place- I”

“I can’t come” she cut him off.

“What?” Max looked surprised, in actual fact shocked; “You said you were fine with it just yesterday”

“I’m sorry Max” she put on a hard face even though she was feeling horrible inside, especially since he was so excited about it, but she didn’t want to get in the way of him and Tess. It was obvious that Tess thought she took up too much room in his life as it was.

There was an awkward silence for a while whilst Max stared at her blankly, then suddenly got up from his seat, “I’ll be in the study if you need me” with that he stormed off.

Liz groaned as she turned her head to watch him walk away. This was for the best. She was giving him what he truly wanted. Tess. Urgh. She wanted to retch. Why her?

Slowly she got up from the couch and made her way to her bedroom tiredly, stripping naked and walking into the bathroom to run the shower with a tired heart, sad that their forming bond had been a mere illusion on her part. She decided she wasn’t going to get in the way of his relationship with Tess. After all it didn’t matter to her because this was a marriage of convenience and she had no right to get in the way, Max didn’t belong to her after all.

After showering she wrapped a towel around her, picking up a bottle of baby oil and taking it with her into the bedroom. She had taken to rubbing the oil over her growing belly ritualistically every night; in a way it comforted her. It was constant.

She clicked on the light switch and nearly jumped out of her skin, dropping the bottle to the ground, when the corner of her eye caught the figure highlighted on her bed.

Max had discarded his jacket and sat on her bed with in his white shirt and trousers, sleeves rolled up and top buttons undone, looking rather at home, his legs splayed out in front of him.

“Max I think your in the wrong room” Liz raised her eyebrows walking toward him, trying to calm herself down after he had scared her almost senseless. Why had he been sitting in her room, in the dark anyway?

Max’s eyes trailed her creamy legs and wet body, fresh from the shower. “Am I?” his eyes glittered.

“I’m afraid so” she walked to him more, until she was standing between his legs feeling that magnetic like attraction that pulled her closer to him every time they were together.

“No” he said suddenly and began unbuttoning his shirt.

“Max...what are you doing?” Liz asked shocked, not sure whether she should be laughing.

“Liz” he sighed, reaching out and pulling her closer to him. Liz gasped when his skin touched hers; already feel the forming hardness of his erection against, against her leg.

“Max, please” she sighed, struggling away from his grasp, “We’ve talked about this”

“I know. . . I can’t help it” he stood up and walked toward her, pushing her body against his, “I try to stay away from you, to not think about you, to not want you . . . but your always here” he pointed to his head, “Always”

So this was about Sex. “I’m sorry Max, but you forget the deal”

“Fuck the deal!” Max grinded his jaw, why didn’t she understand? “Why aren’t you coming to Thailand?” he pressed, “you can’t keep changing your mind like that, one minute your coming, the next your not, one minute you want me and the next you don’t”

“Wow, isn’t a girl allowed to change her mind!” she took a step backward as he continued to move forward, like some predator on the loose.

“Not without reason Liz” she ended up against the wall, his hand resting on the wall behind her.

Liz looked up at him expectantly, his heavy breathing and wild eyes baring in to her, his eyes were drawn to her open lips, inviting him to taste her, he moved in closer hearing her breathing responding to his, just inches apart he moved forward until their lips were touching “Shit” he groaned against her lips and pulled back, turning away from her. She was driving him crazy.

“I’m sorry about the inconvenience,” she said meekly, as he stomped around the room, trying to regain some kind of control. She’d never seen him look so out of control. . So male.

“No” he suddenly stopped and looked up at her tiredly, “Its okay- you don’t want to come, I understand- its completely up to you” he walked back to the bed and slumped back on to it. This was too much, he couldn’t live with her like this- wanting her so much and her not want him return, to be in such close proximity to her and not being able to touch her. To want to say so much, yet not be able to say it.

He sighed inwardly, closing his eyes. Liz, what you do to me.


TBC...

PS- Thankyou so much for the wonderful feedback and bumps!*happy*

[ edited 4 time(s), last at 9-Feb-2003 7:28:18 PM ]
posted on 19-Aug-2002 1:57:06 PM by babybunny
I was planning on coming back sooner, but everything’s been so hectic with getting my results back and sorting out uni etc, etc. Man I could sleep for a month.

Regarding feedback. I had tears in my eyes LOL. I’m writing a guidebook called 50 helpful hints on getting rid of Tess. Dedicated to all of you. *wink*

In answer to some feedback-

Netty- I agree, boys can be blind. Sad but true- So don’t blame Max for being dumb, blame it on his biology.

Sarah Whitman-The reason why Max pulled away from Liz was because of the whole confusion thing going on in his head. Kinda like he wants to kiss her, but knows she doesn’t want it and doesn’t want to force her even though he’s attracted to her. . get it?...hmm. I haven’t really mentioned what Tess and Max do. But just so you know they own a firm.

Shmidta- Boy or girl? I really haven’t decided yet. . .I really don’t have any preferences as of yet.

Jassybee- Don’t hate Liz.LOL .My characters aren’t perfect and I guess Liz’s greatest problem is her insecurity and remember she is pregnant too...

Please keep that in mind when you read this chapter.

Saira

*****

Last time

“No” he suddenly stopped and looked up at her tiredly, “Its okay- you don’t want to come, I understand- its completely up to you” he walked back to the bed and slumped back on to it. This was too much, he couldn’t live with her like this- wanting her so much and her not want him return, to be in such close proximity to her and not being able to touch her. To want to say so much, yet not be able to say it.

He sighed inwardly, closing his eyes. Liz, what you do to me.


Marriage of convenience

Part 10



Liz stood against the wall watching the strained expression on Max’s face. His eyes were closed yet she could sense the emotions in him. There was so much confusion. It seemed to her that he was hiding a lot….maybe his relationship with Tess?

Cautiously moving forward she neared the bed and carefully sat down on the edge, as if not to disturb him. She saw his eyes open, and he slowly sat up.

Liz took a deep breath “Max- I didn’t mean to spoil your plans, I’m sorry”

“I said its fine” he commented blankly, looking down at his hands, but not at her.

There was a strained silence, “obviously its not, but really. . . I don’t understand why you want me to come that much, after all it is a business trip- business that involves you and Tess, I’d feel like the third wheel”

Max shrugged his shoulders, still not looking at her. He didn’t understand why she’d change her mind at the drop of a hat. Wasn’t it obvious that he wanted her to go?

Liz sighed, running her hand through her wet hair and fiddling with the bobbles of the towel. She wished he’d open up to her, there was so much to be said- but yet so hard to say it. She watched him from the corner of her eyes, a little boy expression on his handsome face as he looked resignedly down at his hands. She felt bad. So bad. Even if he was with Tess, she didn’t want him to be unhappy. After all it wasn’t his fault that she was such a conniving whore.

She found herself moving forward and clasping his hands in hers. Max looked up suddenly with a surprised expression on his face. Liz never made the first move, even with simple gestures, she never touched him first. It stunned him.

“Smile” and then she smiled broadly as if teaching him how to do it.

Max grimaced shaking his head. Liz touched the corner of his mouth and pulled it upward, “Like this”. She couldn’t help but laugh at the odd expression on his face, one corner tilted upward and one in an insistent frown. Liz pushed the other corner of his mouth up and giggled again.

Max couldn’t help but mirror her child-like playfulness. A smile appearing on his own face.

God she was so beautiful.

“Liz” he groaned taking both her arms in his hands and pulling them downward, away from his face. “Your crazy”, he shook his head. He hadn’t realised her pregnancy would be so difficult and trying. The ever changing moods, the sudden outbursts, he was always watching out for the next as soon as one was over.

“Yeah, you have a problem?” she raised her eyebrows.

”Yes” he nodded his head, “as matter of fact I do”, he used her arms to pull her closer till his nose was touching hers.

Liz looked into playful amber eyes and bit her lips; he was so close, his breathing sounded loud in her ear and her heartbeat even louder, even though they were playing about. Max didn’t fail to have a heartstopping effect on her. She suddenly became aware that she was pressed hard against his chest and her towel was slowly but surely moving downward.

As usual a number of conflicting emotions went through her head, a part of her wanting to push him away- because it was a right thing to do, he was with Tess, she thought with a sudden grimace. A part of her didn’t care- the part that wasn’t able to resist that force field magnetism that invoked something raw inside her making her want suck the living air out of him, wanting to touch him in places that would make him writhe, squeeze him until he . . . Whoa. . .Liz blushed at the uncontrollable thoughts that were cascading through her head, since when had she started thinking things like that about him?

She looked at Max’s face and saw his eyes focussed on her. Conscious of his gaze she moved backward feeling a little embarrassed, glad that he couldn’t read her mind. But then again sometimes she thought it would be easier if he could.

Max’s grip hardened around her arm.

“Oww”

“Oh” Max loosened his grip, he hadn’t realised he’d been holding on that tight.

“Ow” Liz looked surprised.

“What?” Max asked, he wasn’t even holding onto her anymore.

“It- my stomach. . .” Liz looked down at her stomach, “it kicked”

Max gulped, “What?”

Liz rolled her eyes, “It. . .silly” she pointed to her belly.

“Your stomach?” since when did internal organs kick? She really was driving him insane.

“doofus” she rolled her eyes and chuckled.

Ohh it . . .” Max looked down at her towel covered belly as realisation downed on him. It. . .the baby. He wasn’t sure what he should be doing. “I think. . .that’s. . .normal” but continued to gaze down at her belly as if something might jump out and kick him.

Liz nodded, a smile of excitement playing on her lips, automatically making her forget her earlier fears. The baby had just kicked! The life that she had made, had shown a sign of consciousness, for the first time, she really felt the growing life. She couldn’t explain the elation she was feeling.

“Oh my god” she whispered excitedly as she felt another twang, she instantly grabbed Max’s hand and without thinking slid it up her towel until it rested on her lower belly.

Max’s back straightened, firstly at the realisation of feeling a movement inside her and secondly at the contact of his hand on her naked skin. The bottom of her towel had ridden up when she had pulled his hand impulsively past her legs, to her belly. Max sat stone still, surprise and hunger filtering in his eyes. “Oh wow. . .yeah. . . Um. . .yeah” he had felt it, the baby had kicked. . .

Liz was naked under there.

“Yeah” Liz nodded her head, smiling broadly, then her eyes met his and she followed his gaze to where it was travelling. . . Past her legs and up her thighs. . . where the towel had ridden up. She realised what he must be thinking and instantly released his hand from her grasp.

She felt herself brighten even more when his hand continued to settle on her belly instead of moving away. It then began to slowly and seductively slide down, past her abdomen and then lingering before sliding lower into her dark curls. She gasped when his fingertips stroked past her centre. Instantly sending her heart into overdrive. She felt her self grow hot in desire and her traitorous body reponded to his touch.
Why was he doing this to her? She wondered, her eyes closing in anticipation as his fingers lurked near her core. He was with Tess. . .why was he playing with her?

Max’s heart was beating wildly when he realised how much of an affect he had on her. . . her body was responding…to him, she was wet. . .for him. That must mean something right? His own heartbeat had accelerated. He moved in closer and studied her face, letting his hand linger on her hot, begging centre, feeling her wetness on his hand but also giving a chance for her to stop him. When she didn't, he slid his finger in slightly and felt her walls squeeze. Wanting him, allowing him in.

Max watched Liz’s face hesitantly, her eyes were closed and head faced upward as if waiting for something. Before he could stop himself he was leaning forward and kissing her, kissing her with a passion he couldn’t control. All over her face, her neck, her shoulders.

Liz moaned in anticipation and longing. She wanted him to touch her, to feel her. . .but. . .but, “Max” she grabbed his shirt and pulled at it. But he was with Tess, he couldn’t really have feelings for her- could he?

Liz had called out his name; in secret longing he began stroking her outer folds with his thumb. “Max!” she yelled again, pushing him away.

Max instantly stopped, pulling himself away and watched her face contort. Liz shook, breathing hard. Before she could stop herself a single tear cascaded down her face. Why couldn’t he really care for her? This baby?

Shit. Had he hurt her? Max grabbed at her arm, but she wrenched away, “how can you?” she continued it cry as tears field from her dark eyes. How could he continue to do this to her, make her feel this way when all long he was doing stuff with Tess . . .Why? They were all the same the damn Evans. . .

“What?” Max looked at her worriedly, “Liz-what is it?”

“You user!” she screamed, “… I’m not a fucking toy” she began climbing off the bed, wiping off her tears.

First Andrew and now him. Was she going to be played like this for the rest of her life? What was wrong with her? Why was it her that always ended up in bad situations?

“Liz” he tried to grab at her arms, but she pushed him away.

“All I ever wanted was a safe home for this baby, security, a life that might not make everyone think that my baby is a mistake- all because. . . because Andrew died”

Max straightened up. “I’m sorry . . .I", he was moving too fast; trying to push her into things she didn’t want to do.

“And as well as trying adjust to these circumstances, I’m trying to fight off his brother because he can’t keep his hormones check” she knew that was only a half-truth, but felt like ranting at him. Not like he took her feelings into consideration, she thought sadly. Him and Tess flirting like crazy, especially when she was sitting just across from them. Why?

“Oh come on Liz,” he groaned, “You know this isn’t only me, you’re attracted to me- two to tango and all that”

“Bull”

He sighed resignedly, “Why are you messing with my head?”

“I’m messing with you head?” Liz gasped in exaggerated fury. How could he say that when he had been flirting with Tess right in front of her face all day? And then he had the nerve to come in here and try his luck with her. “If you need to screw that much” which she could tell was the case, “I’m sure there’s a certain blonde out there who’d be willing to take up all your offers- or wait isn't she enough for you?"

“What are you talking about?”

“The girl that had her cleavage in your face all day, the girl that is known as your business partner, want me to spell it out for you? W-h-o-r-e” She said each letter slowly and separately, amazed at her own fury; the words left her mouth and swept out like hurricane impact.

It was a moment before Max responded, “oh- oh-- Jesus Liz what are you on?” he shook his head, “Tess is. . .”

“Stop” she yelled, “I don’t want to hear anything in her defence” she was beginning to feel the tears filling her eyes again, threatening to storm down her face.

“No I’m trying to clarify-“

“What? That you’re in love with her? That you really want to be with her and this marriage is holding you back?”

“No . . .”

“Don’t lie”

Max scrunched his eyes closed and opened them looking at Liz exasperated, “Jeez Liz, you can’t keep denying the fact that you have feelings for me” It was obvious she was jealous, why else would she be going on, on such a tangent? “You’ve even been giving me the come on for days, you can’t keep denying it. Look let me put it in simpler terms, I’m a man you’re a woman it’s inevitable”

“I have not!” Liz spat out, “I maybe a woman, but your only half the man Andrew ever was”.

Whoops.

She regretted those words as soon as they came out of her mouth.

She saw Max’s face darken and silence cut through the air like a knife at her throat.His eyes had turned stone cold. His front was up again.

”…Really?” he drawled after an awfully long stretch, which had left Liz thinking that he was never going to speak again, “You really think that don’t you?” he jumped off the bed and stood up folding his arms menacingly. His eyes bearing hard into her.

Liz gulped. “I didn’t mean…” she trailed off at the look in his eyes. She had aimed to hurt his ego and had landed spot on. Now she had to take what was coming, Max Evans and a very bruised ego didn’t compliment each other.

“You want to know the truth Elizabeth?” he glared at her and a chill swept through her spine. His accusing voice was powerful with intensity.

“Your right- its all a mistake. . .a big mistake” a smirk formed at the corner of his mouth, “Andrew never loved you, he had no intention of marrying you”

“Rubbish. . .he said . . .you were there . . .that night”

“Yeah I was” he nodded his head “and it was all put on- a mere show in which you stumbled across and ended up playing the puppet”

Liz shivered, “Don’t lie”

“The only reason he agreed to marry you was because I threatened him” he continued, taking no notice of her faltering expression, “I told him that if he didn’t agree to marry you, I wouldn’t bail him out of those many times he had stolen funds from fathers business. . .and you know what Liz?. . .it was easy. Andrew was a scavenger- a damn poor scavenger, he spent all his life living off father and when father realised he couldn’t keep up with his sons rather dire spending habits- he decided to put an end to them” Max rolled his eyes, disgust playing on his face, “but oh no Andrew wouldn’t stop there, he committed fraud on his beloved father, taking money whenever he could. Dad on the other hand was too dumb to realise why it was becoming harder and harder to invest in his projects—his beloved Andrew could never do any wrong in his eyes. . .so now you know the truth about him- he was going to marry you because I made him”. He finished his speech with uncanny assurance. A Cold yet positive look on his face.

Liz gulped, “I don’t believe you-“

“I’m not asking you to, I’m telling it how it is. . .don’t mean to be disrespectful to the dead, but Andrew was a good for nothing loser…you never knew the real him, in fact you never knew him at all”

Liz felt her self redden because his words were so true; Andrew had come and gone like a whirlwind in her life. What did she really know about him? That he was an Evans- that was all. That he was twice her senior, that she had always had a crush on him. That she had been rushed into sleeping with him and that he had gotten her pregnant. That was it.


“There’s something else you should know about your hero” Max scoffed “when the plane crashed they didn’t just find one body”

Liz eyed him quizzically. “What are you talking about”?

“There were two bodies Elizabeth- Andrew and one of his girlfriends, one he was running off to have a secret rendezvous with”

Liz felt her heart stop. She didn’t want to believe him…but somewhere inside her she knew he was telling the truth.

“And if that’s what you call a man…” Max eyed her, “each to his own”

Leaving Liz utterly shocked, not being able to speak as he began walking out. “And another thing Elizabeth” he stood with his hand on the door handle, “All you women… are the same” he glared down at the doorknob where his hand was resting with a fiery intensity “distrustful, hateful- unfaithful”

Before Liz could ask what the hell he was talking about. He walked out slamming the door behind him. Not long after, she heard the front door open and slam and the revving of a car engine driving deep into the night.

Liz felt tears drop from her eyes, as she stood utterly alone in the darkening room. She didn’t want to believe him, she wanted to call him a liar and mean it. But Max was right, she had known all along. Max saying it loud just been the stamp on the envelope. A confirmation on her thoughts. She knew she had been used. Andrew didn’t love her. . .he had used her to get his way with her. It was all a mistake a big mistake.

Sobbing she curled up on the bed, holding onto her belly and closing her eyes, part of her wishing day would never come.

******

The car cascaded into the night. He drove so fast he wasn't sure where the night ended and where he begun. Max reached deep inside his pocket and pulled out the rusty, gold chain, he had bought that day so clearly etched in his memory.

The first day he had seen her, standing behind the Christmas stall at the church fete. Her bored eyes had searched the blue sky and then they had landed on him, a smile appearing on her soft lips. That day something had happened, he wasn’t sure what. . .but it had made him relive a dream, a dream that he wanted so much to be a part of him.

Cursing himself at his stupidity, he scrunched the chain in his hand and threw it out of the window. Only a glisten of rusty gold shone on the road as the speeding car flew past.

TBC….

I know this chapter was a bit angsty- but before you all give up on me, I want to confirm that it will get better. I swear!

::Waits for the stone hurling::


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 19-Aug-2002 2:31:36 PM ]
posted on 25-Aug-2002 5:32:53 PM by babybunny
I’m back! And still continuing this story!

Just so you know Max was thinking about Liz in the car . . .


Posted in two parts due to the 10-page restriction.

Last time

The car cascaded into the night. He drove so fast he wasn't sure where the night ended and where he begun. Max reached deep inside his pocket and pulled out the rusty, gold chain, he had bought that day so clearly etched in his memory.

The first day he had seen her, standing behind the Christmas stall at the church fete. Her bored eyes had searched the blue sky and then they had landed on him, a smile appearing on her soft lips. That day something had happened, he wasn’t sure what. . .but it had made him relive a dream, a dream that he wanted so much to be a part of him.

Cursing himself at his stupidity, he scrunched the chain in his hand and threw it out of the window. Only a glisten of rusty gold shone on the road as the speeding car flew past.




Marriage of convenience

Part 11





Dawn appeared before she knew it and Liz sat up on the bed, shivering inside and out. She was cold, not a surprise . . .after all she had slept- or to put it more conveniently stayed awake all night in just a towel. The burning ache at the back of her head threatened to take over her mind. She had spent all night going through a million questions that she needed the answer to, till the point where if she thought anymore her head would implode.

She turned her head to watch the morning sky through the un-drawn curtains, a streak a vivid colour of purple across the sky. It was so beautiful, she thought with sudden wonder. It made you think that all life wasn’t terrible, that there was some beauty out there, just waiting to catch you when you least expected it. Even though right now it definitely didn’t feel like it.

Last night had been terrible, thoughts and dreams of a similar nature had drifted through her head. Andrew. His corpse coming to haunt her, his slick, arms had been around her waist and his hungry mouth had kissed her terrified body. Liz had cried and screamed and tried to push him away. But his voice had repeated her name over and over, first in sexual moans then in grunts, before he yelled the she was a cheater, a liar, a filthy whore and had tried to drag her down . . .into his grave. She had woken up sweat covered and crying before running into the bathroom to throw up.

After gaining her breath back, she had silently opened Max’s bedroom door, to be faced with an unmade bed and un-drawn curtains. It had been 5am. Where was he? She wondered worriedly. Her mind did not want to comprehend the fact that something may have happened to him or even worse that he was with Tess. He had drove off in absolute fury and she couldn’t deny that she was to blame. She had bought something up last night, something that should never have been said to Max . . .ever. Whenever Andrew was bought up, there were a lot more strings and emotions attached then perhaps she’d ever fully comprehend. She should have known better then to get back at him by using Andrew.

Still feeling nauseous, she walked to the wardrobe and pulled on a long sweater, to help that tingling in her spine calm. Walking over to the patio doors, she slid them open and walked over to the white railings, peering over the Balcony, she saw that his car still hadn’t arrived. It was almost 6.30 she thought with a tremulous sigh. Max where are you?

She ran her hand through her uncombed hair anxiously feeling that she might cry again, but her tears had dried out from crying all night. Last night had left her insecure and confused, unaware where she stood anymore. She had wanted to go home, but her father was on that cruise with the major, and a lonely home in the quiet country would drive her insane. She had tried to call Maria, but her cell didn’t seem to be switched on and the university didn’t take internal calls. All she wanted was to talk to someone. Someone to tell her that in the end it would work out, that it wasn’t all her fault. That it would be okay.

Sniffling she walked back inside and curled back on the bed, confusion hurtling through every cell. As if in understanding her distress, she felt a slowly becoming familiar twang in her belly. Liz smiled softly to herself, spraying her hand over the little bump. “It’ll be okay honey, we’ll work something out . . .”

*******

Max rubbed at his eyes, every muscle in his body was aching and if he didn’t get any sleep soon, he was sure his heavy head was going to fall off his neck.

He had drove in angry fury through most of the night. He had been hurt, confused. But at himself more then anything else. The way he had lost his cool and thrown everything at Liz was wrong. After all she was pregnant, she had an excuse for losing it. He didn’t.

He pulled up outside a petrol station and thumbed through his wallet for some money. He was miles away from home and he wasn’t planning on going back anytime soon. He wasn’t sure where he was going, but it sometimes driving into oblivion took away the pain. When he drove he was leaving all those fleeting emotions behind, they were chasing him, but he was too fast. He was escaping.

Without thinking he reached for his pocket, the gold chain. A kind sense of relief went through him. It wasn’t there and he was glad. He had finally done it. He had eventually thrown it out and with that he had let her go. Things between him and Liz wouldn’t work out; it was stupid of him to think that they ever could.

He shook his head at ever being so silly to keep something like that in the first place. Like Liz would care that he had kept that sentiment he had bought from the church fete that day . . . because it reminded him of her. The thought of doing something so stupid and childish made him shake his head in disgust. Like it’d make a difference to how she felt about him . . . Like it would make her like him or even look at him twice and like it mattered that he had kept it all these months for a reason unknown to him.

He snorted at himself; You’re a sorry story Max. He stroked his hand through his hair and opened the car door. A ray of morning sunshine streaked across they sky as he walked to the petrol pump.

********

Finally making a decision, Liz sat up and reached for the phone. It was time to swallow her pride; it was time to tell him she was sorry. She had thought and thought and thought about this and had come to the conclusion it was her fault and something had to be done, if she didn’t make it work now, it never would.

She must have hurt him, calling him half the man Andrew was. And even though it had sped out of her mouth and she had regretted it as soon as it did, she had done it all the same. Why? To get the upper hand. To invoke him. And boy had it worked. It had worked, but at the same time had left an awful sense of dread and dissatisfaction in her mind. It had made her feel awful and now she was going to call him out of selfishness because if he forgave her, it would make her heavy heart feel a whole lot better too.

Clasping the receiver tight, she dialled his cell number hoping that he’d pick up and pity her enough to talk to her. She closed her eyes and in almost a silent player chanted for him to answer.

*********

He looked at his watch and groaned. It was late; he’d never be able to get to work on time. He had already rung up the office and told them he wasn’t coming in. He had the liberty to do that, Stuart always got it sorted. But still it irked him, not going in because of his argument with Liz last night. He had never let personal issues affect his work before.

His stomach made an uncanny noise and he started up the engine, guessing he’d better get something to eat. Hearing the insistent ringing of his cell, he reached for it in his pocket and without looking at the caller ID he held it to his ear

“Hello”

“Max! What’s wrong? Are you ill?” Tess’s voice resounded back, sounding utterly confused and worried. Max scratched the back of his head, thinking he should have called her; she always got worried when he didn’t turn up.

“ . . .Tess I wont be coming in today”

There was a pause on the other end, “Why . . . what is it? Do you have something planned?”

“I . . .no . . .I’m kind of tired, been awake all night”

“Oh” came the reply. “Is there um . . .Anything I can do? . . .is Liz around?”

Max sighed, “No I’m fine and she isn’t around . . .”

“Your not with her? Where is she?”

“I’m not with her” he commented, ignoring the second part of her question, he really wasn’t in the mood to talk to anyone right now, but he guessed it would be impolite to just hang up.

“So where are you?”

Max looked around at the petrol station beside him, the quiet streets and dusty high way that he had just pulled off at. “Um Eastward . . .I think” He hadn't actually taken much notice of where he was going.

“Eastward?”

“Yeah, I won’t be able to get back on time, Stuarts already rescheduled the meetings for me . . .and the talk with Mr Angelo can wait until tomorrow . . . Is there anything else?” he added in an attempt to close the conversation.

There was a small pause before she answered. “No Max—everything’s absolutely fine. I’ll handle it all”

“Good” Max was about to hang up, but on thought remembered something else “Could you do me a favour and cancel a room in the hotel. Liz isn’t coming to Thailand anymore”


“What?” Tess's voice rose and octave. “She has to- I mean what is she going to do all alone? Getting out and about will do her a world of good”


“I know you were saying that you wanted to get to know her better, but she’s a little hormonal with the pregnancy, it’d be better if she rested”

“But you said— wait, she’s pregnant?”

BRB

posted on 25-Aug-2002 5:41:30 PM by babybunny
Marriage of convenience

Part 11 continued


Oh shit.

Jesus. What the fuck was wrong with him? That’s right no one in London knew . . .he hadn’t told anyone and Liz had been cleverly concealing from all but Arthur. When had he stopped thinking with his brain? He had meant to announce it over dinner yesterday . . .now it’d just seem suss. Why would anyone want to hide a pregnancy? Usually there was something to hide. This was such a mess.

“Max!! Max!”

“Yes she’s pregnant Tess”

“Oh . . .my . . ."

“I was meaning to tell you” Max rubbed at his temple. This is what happened when you running on total empty.

Tess recovered quicker then he thought, “Well that’s all the more reason to take her with us”

“I don’t think she’s make very good company with her hormones being haywire and I can’t force her”

“I guess”

“Right”

“Was . . .it something I said?”

“I . . .uh . . .no” Max replied.

“Are you sure Max? She didn’t have a problem before hand and I know its not you she has a problem with . . .so I’m adding two and two together and I’m guessing she hates me”

“No Tess” If Liz had a problem it was definitely with him.

“I knew it, I told you she hated me, didn’t I?”

“She doesn’t hate you Tess,” he groaned, feeling frustrated. Liz didn’t like Tess that was obvious. But she hadn’t said she had hated her…well not in so many words . . . he was guessing that Tess got involved in their arguments because it was the most obvious way for Liz have a rant at him. .“Look I have to go now, we’ll talk later”. He hung up and leant his head against the steering wheel.

Jesus.

Tess looked down at the receiver a long, long time, a secret smile playing on her lips. One lesson that she had been taught and taught well throughout her life was this. Never, ever give up—there is an opportunity in everything and she could definitely make this work in her favour.

Okay, she had been doting on Liz coming to Thailand, because once she was there she would have gotten her out of her mans life for good. But . . . it’d work this way too.

The only barrier was time, she had to get into safe zone before Liz did and she couldn’t wait any longer, especially with the slight inconvenience of her being pregnant. She had waited most of her life and no stupid marriage or baby was going to spoil her plans. If it was happening, it was going to happen now.

She looked down at the phone receiver still in her hand and nodding to herself dialled for Mr Montri in Thailand.

“Hello . . . Mr Montri? This is Tess Harding, associate from ETA finance International- I wanted to talk to you about our meeting in Thailand next week”

Liz or no Liz. Max would definitely be hers by the time they got back from Thailand.

*********

Who the hell was he talking to?

Liz continued to stare at the receiver in her hand that had been engaged a moment ago, wondering whether to dial again. She rested the receiver on her ear and then on impulsive thought slammed it down again. Scrambling out of bed and made a beeline to the shower. She wasn’t even sure what to say to him. How could she try to straighten things out when a thousand of her thoughts were still confused in her head? Maybe a shower would help her think straight.

After showering she pulled on a white sundress and blow-dried her hair. The shower had made her feel a little better; less weepy that was for certain. She decided that she wasn’t going to pity herself any longer, bad luck had clouded her circumstances and maybe if she tried to think with a clear head, she could get past all of this.

She heard the front door open and before she knew it she was making a run downstairs. “Max!” she yelled as she turned the corner to the front door.

Arthur put his bags down and shuffled around, a small smile creasing his ancient face. “Hello Elizabeth dear- up early ”

“Oh hi…” Liz smiled, disappointment clouding her face. She had been hoping that maybe it had been Max. Not that she knew what she was going to say to him, she had just hoped-

“Would you like some breakfast?” Arthur smiled.

‘No . . . No” Liz shook her head, “I’m not really hungry”

“Oh come on, don’t be silly” Arthur ushered her into the kitchen, “there’s two of you to cater for, you might not be hungry, but I’m sure that little blighter in there is”

Liz sighed and sat down at the table, “Arthur . . .”

“Yes Elizabeth?” he asked, his back toward her as he began shuffle about with the groceries.

“Um . . .nothing”

Arthur turned around to give her quizzical look “Nothing?”

“It doesn’t matter” She was meant to be Max’s wife- how could she come out and ask Arthur about Tess? About his past relationships, about his mother . . .the massive rivalry with Andrew . . . About that comment about women yesterday? It’d sound odd. Because it was . . and her asking Arthur would just make him even more suspicious.

It had been a little awkward the other day when Liz had mentioned about putting laundry in ‘Max’s room’. How was she to know that Max hadn’t told him that they had separate rooms? When Arthur had asked, Max had cleared the air by saying, that they didn’t share rooms because Liz liked to have her own space, with much sarcasm in his voice. Arthur hadn’t said as much, but she could tell his old mind was ticking away, piecing the puzzle one by one. It wouldn’t be long before he got there.


“Well . . .if that nothing becomes something this old man’ll try and give it ago” Arthur nodded his head at her and turned back to the groceries.

Liz bit her lip. The only way she was going to know anything about Max was if she talked to him herself and she would as soon as he got back from wherever he had been all night.



Bring. Bring.

Goddamnit.

Max sat up with a jerk, realizing that he had almost nodded off. Reaching to the passenger seat beside him, he threw takeaway trash papers on the floor, and grabbed his cell.

“Tess”

“Max . . .I’m sorry I don’t mean to disturb you again but . . .”

“What?”

“We have to go to Thailand”

Max held onto his cell and rubbed his eyes. “Yes I know we have to go to Thailand” Was everyone around him going crazy? Or maybe it was him that was just losing it. “Thailand is next week”

“No, we have to get there by tomorrow morning”

**********

“Arthur you know what? - You’re a great cook” Liz slightly lifted her head from the table to address the old man, then leant her head down again, ear against dining room table continuing to tap her fingers against the hard oak.

Her hungry stomach was content, but she wasn’t. She wouldn’t be until she talked to Max and until she apologised for what she had said to him yesterday. She had already rehearsed a hundred times, a hundred different ways. She was going to get this just right.

Max. You’ve got to forgive me. I’m an impulsive moron. Sorry . . .

Max. I’m sorry. I’ve got the foot in your mouth disease. I for voted little miss tactless in high school.


…He really didn’t need to know that.


Max. Listen to me. I’m your wife damn it. When I make mistakes you shouldn’t run out on me like that.

Max. Please forgive me. Please. Please. Please….

Hmm.

Max –

The front door opening and being slammed closed shattered her thoughts. Quickly swinging around in her chair, she saw Max run up the stairs through the open dining room door. Her heart jumped in her chest. Boy he looked angry, or rushed . . .or something.

But that wasn’t going to stop her; it was time to clear the air. Clearing her throat, she straightened out her dress and made her way up the staircase. She took a deep breath and walked in through the already open door to Max’s bedroom.

She was confronted by a shamble of clothes all over the floor, Max was leaning over an open suitcase on the bed, muttering to himself and going through cupboards, drawers, wardrobes, throwing things into it in frenzy.

Liz’s eyes widened. He was leaving? She had driven him to the point where he had, had enough of her? Was that why he was packing and ready to go? She had to stop this . . .he couldn’t just go, just like that.

Moving forward she placed on a hand on his back and felt him stiffen and straighten up slowly. Max stood up tensely and turned around to face her.

“Max” she looked up at him determinedly.

Max threw the shirt he was holding into the suitcase, “Liz”

Liz nodded her head and looked at the ground and shuffled her feet before meeting his eyes, “Don’t go,” she said suddenly, “please”

Max shrugged his shoulders, “I have to” he picked up a few shirts from around his bed and chucked them in the suitcase too. She put her hand on his shoulder at seeing his jaw clench at her touch; she felt his frustration go through her own body. She felt tears pinpricking beneath her eyelids again. Apologise Liz . . .tell him your sorry. Biting her lip, she sniffed.

Max looked at her then looked away. When she did that it drove him crazy, made him go into protective mode, make all his anger disappear. God he couldn’t be angry with her for more then a minute. He wanted to hold her and make it all better, but Liz didn’t like that. She may give off the 'come protect me' vibe, but he was sure she could look after herself and after all- she had told him yesterday that she didn’t quite think he was a ‘man’

“Please don’t feel you have to” her voice quivered.

“I don’t actually have a choice”

“Yes you do” she bit her lip, “Its awful that you feel you have to. I’ll go if you want me to. In fact I deserve to” She looked up at him questioningly; ready to walk right out if she needed to.

Max looked at her confused, she deserved to go to Thailand? After yesterday --Hell no.

“Please” she pleaded. “I feel awful”

“Liz, I realise pregnancy can cause the mood swings, but all this impulsive decision making is driving me up the wall”

“So you don’t want me to go?” Maybe he was willing to work this whole mess out after all . . .

Jeez. “You actually want to go after all that ruckus you made yesterday? Are you feeling okay Liz?” he shook his head, then worked on calming his breathing. She was playing with him.

“No I feel awful- don’t go, I don’t want a divorce only after a few weeks, but if this is the way its going to be . . .If I need to go I will” she said with determination in her eyes.

Max’s face was over come with a confused expression, “Who said anything about a divorce? Look Liz, I need to go to Thailand”

“Oh” Liz’s hand went to her mouth and she flushed at the misunderstanding. “Thailand! . . .Yeah of course” He wasn’t going to leave her after all! But why was he going so soon? “But um . . .wasn’t that next week?” she moved toward him testing the water.

“Yes, they’ve moved the meeting to tomorrow morning” Max said slowly and walked away, to begin rummaging through the nearest drawer “Its inconvenient . . .” he stifled a yawn, “but I can’t miss it for the world”

Liz looked at him rummage through his things noticing his hesitancy to look at her. “Um Max . . .”

“Excuse me” he shuffled past her into the bathroom and picked up some aftershave and razors, “yeah?” he called from the bathroom. His lean figure reappeared against the bathroom doorframe.

“I . . .um . .” Say it Liz . . . “Do you need any help?”

“No its fine” he reached for his suitcase and threw his things in rather aggressively. Everything was a mess, she noticed as she looked around his room. His room was never a mess.

“Um Max”

He sighed and looked up at her, “Yes Liz?”

“Last night”

She saw him visibly stiffen again. For a minute he sat as still as statue, refraining to move a muscle. When she didn’t say anything he began ruffling through his things again. “Have you seen my sun glasses?”

“No”

“Damn it . . ." I was sure I left them around in this bottom drawer, he began throwing out his things one by one, and with such intensity they were skittering all around the room.

“Max!” she sighed.

“Here they are” Max picked out a package from the bottom drawer and turned to face her. “Quit the screaming I heard you”

Liz felt her heart sink at the anger in his eyes. She walked and sat down at the edge of the bed, clasping her hands together “I realise your mad, your angry because of the things I said to you . . .I know I hurt you, but I didn’t mean it Max, you have to believe me. I admit it Andrew was a jerk, I knew he was a jerk all along I way just too blind to believe it”

“Liz” Max sighed, “Andrew was a jerk” he looked down at his sunglasses and then back up at her, “but I’m not going to sit here and list through the extent of Andrews jerkdom. I really don’t have time to be talking about him right now”. He walked over to the bed and zipped up his suitcase. Despite the need to, he couldn’t talk right now, he was too tired, too confused . . . too hurt. He picked up his bag and began heading down the staircase.

Liz nodded her head “Okay . . .”she answered, following him downstairs “How long will you be gone?” she asked with a sinking feeling in her stomach. He was going without forgiving her. Without hearing the full part of the story and she had been so determined to get it out into the open too . . .he hated her, it was obvious.

“I’ll be back next week Monday”

“Okay”

“If you need anything, just ask Arthur. I’ve booked all your appointments at the anti natal clinic and if you need to talk to me, which I doubt you will” he unlocked his car door, “you know where to contact me”

Liz nodded her head silently, trying to stop the tears that were threatening to cascade down her face. He was back to speaking at her rather then to her. He had put that distance between them that had just began to break down over the last couple of days. Don’t cry. Don’t cry. Don’t cry.


Max opened the boot and flung his suitcase inside and turned to look at her briefly, “See you next week Liz” he turned away but was stunned when he felt his arm being pulled back.

“Max” Liz leant forward, her lower lips trembling. Still not able to understand why was she having that awful sinking feeling in her stomach. She had the greatest urge then, to sit in his car and refuse to budge until he decided to stay or take her with him.

But it was too late. And acting like a spoilt brat wasn’t going to help her case.

Max watched her lean forward in silence until she was just inches apart. Her eyes moved to look at his lips and then very slowly she brushed her lips softly against his.

He was shocked to say the least. Unable to speak for a minute he continued to stare at her even as she pulled away. Finally finding words, but no indication as to why she had just kissed him, he spoke “Um . . .Okay . . .bye . . .Liz” he moved away from her walking backward, then turned around opening the car door sliding inside to take a deep breath.

A faraway look in Liz’s eyes was reflected back at him ask he adjusted the rear-view mirror. She stood in the driveway; hands clasped on her growing belly, hair blowing in the wind, glowing with ethereal beauty and looking astonishingly like his fairy. He dragged his eyes away, knowing that, that image of her would be playing in his mind for a while. He revved up the engine and was gone in a cloud of smoke.


Liz watched him disappear without so much as a backwards glance. “Bye Max” Liz said quietly, sadness irking at the bottom of her heart. She hoped she hadn’t messed up for good.

TBC

*kisses all around for de support* You know, when I started this I didn't think anyone would bother to read my first time fic. Then I got worried a few days ago about the whole paligerizing issue going on at this board, cuz this concept is inspired from another fic and was scared I wouldn't be able to continue it. Buts its okay. Yay.


See you soon.


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 25-Aug-2002 6:03:07 PM ]
posted on 30-Aug-2002 5:31:51 PM by babybunny
Argh. Thankyou all for these lovely bumps, but I havn't even started on the new part yet.

::hides head in shame:: For some reason I decided to take on a new fic, just didn't realise my hectic schedule wasn't up for it.

I will be back with new part soon. Hopefully.
posted on 1-Sep-2002 7:10:11 PM by babybunny
Ofcourse I won't forget!!*happy*

I'm working on that new part right now, but just wanted to drop in and show off this wonderful banner by Talena

1-5-2

Thankyou hun.
posted on 6-Sep-2002 1:50:36 PM by babybunny
1-5-2

Banner by Talena


Authors note

::sigh::I’m back! Thank you for keeping this story bumped. You guys rock. Yes, this has been an exceptionally busy week—and over the next few months it’s going to get pretty hectic because I’ve got my fingers in too many pies. But don’t worry. I’ll still be writing this! Maybe not ploughing out as many new chapters as I have previously.

This part was annoying the hell out of me. It was hard to write, mainly because I had to decide on one of two directions that I was going to take this. Unfortunately none of them included throwing Tess over the bridge . . .just yet. Anyway-

Firstly I’d like to thank PS dreamer for all her info and tidbits on Thailand.

BelevnDreamsToo- Hope you had a great birthday, sorry I couldn’t post then. Just think of this as a belated Birthday story.


I want to dedicate this part to my darling friend Sierra. For being a great friend and inspiration. Keep strong hun. Life goes on.

Marriage of Convenience

Part 12


Liz stood in trance like state, watching his car become smaller and smaller until it disappeared from view. Then she stood and watched nothing for a long time. She stood and watched the clouds move slowly and noticed how all of a sudden they had grown, heavier and darker, forecasting bad weather. She stood and heard the beeping of horns and blaring music not too far off on the busy London streets. She stood and felt the warm breeze caressing her cheeks, sending her loose hair flying in every direction. Time ticked by unnoticed as she stood and thought about nothing.

She was bought back to reality by a firm hand on her shoulder. Turning around she saw, Arthur’s wrinkly face smiling at her; he was holding a cordless phone in his hand. “Its for you”

Liz took the phone and held it against her ear, “Hello?”

“Miss me?” Came the reply and then the standard laughter.

“Maria!” Liz smiled, her insides instantly lightening at hearing her friends voice, “How are you?” she followed Arthur inside and closed the door behind her.

“Hmm. Busy. These extensive assignments they keep pushing in my face and along with that placement in Austria next week. I’m up to my neck in it . . .but I’ll cope”

“Of course you will” Coping was a strategy that they all had to deal with.

“ So anyway I got back from a party and I’m confronted from how many missed calls from you at 2am this morning?”

“Um . . .” Liz bit her lip.

“39! 39 Liz . . “

“Oh” Liz remembered last night, trying not to replay the intensity of it. Everything had been frantic and . . .horrible. In fact hadn’t even realised she had called Maria that many times.

“ . . .Well?” prompted the voice from the other end, “what’s up?”

“Nothing . . .I just wanted to talk”

“So talk Liz, I’m here, I’m listening”

Liz sighed and bit her lip and slowly ran her fingers through her hair, “Um Maria, theres something . . .I think . . .I think . . .”

“Yes Liz?” Maria prompted.

“I think” Unable to make words form in a fully comprehensible sentence she blurted them out “I’m in love with Max”

There was silence on the other end as Liz cringed as those words left her mouth. She couldn’t help it. “I’m not sure when it happened . . .or why it happened. It just happened” she stuttered in an attempt to explain herself.

When she had watched his car disappear into oblivion, she had wished more then anything in the world that she could turn back time. That she hadn’t let him go-- because just then she had realised how much she had fallen and just how deep.

“So . . . What’s the problem?” Maria retorted.

Liz wasn’t sure how to answer, “huh? I can’t have feelings for him Maria! Its . . .not right”

“Jesus! Why on earth not Liz? He’s your husband, you’re meant to have feelings for him! . . .Really I can think of worse case scenarios”

“No . . .”

Yes!” Maria sighed exaggeratedly down the; line, “Look . . .you were attracted to him way back, even I saw that, it was like . . . you know . . . fizzling in the air”

“It wasn’t part of the deal,” Liz said quietly holding tightly to the receiver. How could she have feelings for Max, when more likely then not, he was with Tess and even if he wasn’t, he would be by the time they had got back from Thailand. She had been so awful to him . . .

“Urgh Liz. Who cares about some stupid deal, which no one knows about? I saw this coming way back . . .and look . . .. This is Max Evans . . .Max Evans!

Liz couldn’t help but giggle at her tone of voice, “Don’t burst a nerve Maria” She found herself in the lounge and sat down slowly on the couch.

“You have to tell him . . .right now”

Liz sighed, continuing to chew at her lower lip, “I don’t know how” There were too many doubts in her mind, what if he rejected her outright? How would she continue to live with him?

Liz heard Maria make a guttural sound and could just envisage her friend shaking her head on the other end of the phone, “Okay I’m hanging up on you. You go and tell him. Got it? Go.tell.him.Ok?”

“No!” Liz began to panic “I can’t” She was only answered with a dead noise from the other side. Liz held the receiver staring down at it and jumped when it started ringing in her hands again.

She pressed the receiver to her ear again. “Hello?”

“Don’t forget to fill me in on all the details” Maria added her last two cents and hung up.

Liz looked down at the reciever and chewed at her lower lip, a tangy taste of blood was left in her mouth. She couldn’t tell him . . .she just couldn’t.

*****


“Please turn all mobile phones, receivers and electronic devices off” the voice reverberated from the aeroplane intercom.

Max reached in the pocket of his trousers and hastily clicked it off. It would be good to take a break a while, his phone was constantly ringing and if there was any place he didn’t want to hear from right now, it was work.

Tess smiled and shifted a little beside him, “Look Max” she reached into her bag and pulled out a magazine, “All things Thai” she had a huge smile plastered on her face and she leant over opening the magazine further and holding it close to him. “That’s our hotel . . .see it?” she pointed to a little picture on the map and Max nodded his head, “and here . . .” he finger scraped along a line, “look the RCA, they have billions of shops, clubs, absolutely everything, and here . . .the famous Buddhist temple—Wat Prakaew, it’d be great to see something so beautiful, so historic . . .and here . . .Phuket such a beautiful, romantic island---“ she sighed wistfully, “there are just so many places to visit—we might have to prolong our stay”

Max gaze followed her fingers distantly, not really listening. “Yeah Tess, sounds good”

There was a final announcement about securing seatbelts and a familiar thrum of the plane began to sound in his ears.

“I’m awestruck by the enthusiasm” Tess shook her head, leaning toward him slightly to look out of the window of the moving plane.

“You want the window seat?” he asked, She seemed so overexcited. This was hardly her first trip abroad. Their work involved a lot of travelling but her enthusiasm never waned. “I plan on sleeping, you may aswell enjoy the view”

“Oh come on Max!” Tess laughed, “It can’t be that hard to be a little more with it and I’m fine here”

“Yeah well let me sleep, I’ll be a lot more with it when I wake—I promise”

Tess sighed and watched him fall back into his seat. She watched his dark lashes cast shadows on to his cheeks and his breathing become heavier. The view from where she was sitting was just right. Just perfect. She slowly moved forward to touch the side of his cheek.

“Madame, would you like anything to drink?” Tess hastily moved her hand back and looked at the airhostess, “No I’m fine” she retorted.

“If you need anything—“

“—No its fine” Tess gave her a large smiled and pulled out a magazine, shaking her head.

*****


“Perfect”. Liz looked around at her finished work. He had left the room in chaos and she had just cleaned out the shambled mess. Putting everything back in its rightful place. It had taken her almost 3 hours, but it was spotless and perfect—just the way he was used to keeping it.

Whilst tidying, she had thought seriously about what Maria had said and she’d decided that she'd ring Max . . . She had to admit, him being alone with Tess wasn’t really making her feel too comfortable. If something were going on between them, she’d feel like an interfering fool. That’s why she wasn’t going to tell him, but she was going clear the air. She owed him that much at least. Max was getting a phone call as soon as the plane touched Thai soil.

A sudden movement in her lower belly interrupted her thoughts. Liz rubbed her hands over the bump. ”Sweetie do you ever give it a break?” She shook her head playfully, and went to walk out of the room when another movement ceased across her belly, almost knocking the air out of her, “Wow” Liz let out a rush of air, the intensity of the movement surprising her. She moved toward the bed and sat down, “someone’s restless” she breathed. Slightly running her hand across her belly, she willed her flaying heart to calm down. For some reason her nerves had gone into over drive.

*****


“I’m sorry sir . . .” the Thai man at the help desk repeated for the fifth time in his strong Thai accent. He seemed like he was just getting to grips with his job, he looked flustered and a little scared, which wasn’t surprising at the look Max was giving him. “We have only one room booked under the name of Evans”

“Oh Jesus—“ Max began; these people were intent on causing problems. He was in no mood for these travel mishaps especially after such a long journey. When could a guy get a nice holiday without these travel companies messing up? It happened all the time.

“I’m really sorry sir”

Max shook his head and turned to Tess, before turning back to the man at the help desk. “Okay, never mind. I should have expected something like this. Book me another room please, ensuite if possible, until Monday”

“I’m sorry sir, we have no more vacant rooms, and our hotel is fully booked in advance”

Max looked at the man, and the guy seemed to shrink back in his chair at the intensity of his gaze. “Okay you tell me . . .” Max glanced down at his nametag “Mr . . . Dehari, what the hell am I mean to do? I booked 3 rooms and there’s only one available, how did this happen?”

The man looked through a jumble of papers again, looking extremely flustered “Um here it says-“

Max placed his hand on the desk, and leant toward him “ I don’t care what it says, now I need a room in this hotel and I suggest you do something about it and quick”

“I’m sorry—“

“That lines getting cliché”

“Max” Tess put her hand on his shoulder, “Look Max calm down, we’ll work something out”

Max ran his hand through his hair tiredly, and breathed a long drawn breath. Things were getting on top of him, he wasn’t usually like this. “—As long as your okay with it” he eyes met hers.

“Fine”

Max glared at the desk guy one more time before grabbing the key and making his way to the lift.

Tess sighed and began following him.

“Is there a problem miss?” Another stocky looking man appeared behind the helpdesk guy and now she stood facing her, she guessed he was probably someone in charge, coming to sort out all the ruckus Max had caused. Tess turned to look for Max, but he had already disappeared.

“I understand there’s a problem with the booking of the room,” he began tapping into the computer, “what was the name?”

“Evans” the help deskman answered for her.

The stocky man tapped in a few times on the keyboard, “one room for Evans, I understand you cancelled 2 earlier”

Tess nodded her head slowly, a smile appearing on her lips. “Thank you. Everything is fine”

With that she followed Max’s footsteps, not noticing the confused looks the two men at the help desk were giving each other. Tourists. It happened all the time.

Tess opened the door and couldn’t say she was half disappointed at the sight. Max ploughing through the drawer next to the bed. Shirtless. She licked her lips at the way his back rippled, when he turned his head around to look at her.

“Sorry about this Tess. It’s a nuisance” his gaze spun round the room, “There’s not much I can do about this room arrangement”

“Its not your fault Max” Tess stalked toward him, until she stood directly infront of him, “things like this happen and I really don’t mind, I can think of worse things then sharing a room with you”

“That’s good then” he smiled and pulled out a towel, “I’m going to take a quick shower…”

Tess nodded her head, watching his form disappear into the bathroom.

So far so good . . .

Max was lapping it all up. She had already sensed that he was on edge. Something about him wasn’t as relaxed as he normally would be and she figured that was due to the argument he had obviously had with Liz. Her smile widened. Really, Liz was making it so easy for her. Everyday she spent with him would make it easier. Unravelling Max would be easy once she scratched past that put on surface and when Max let him self go—their partnership would finally become whole.

Hearing Max’s cell go off she reached for it, “Hello”

Liz held the cordless tightly. Tess. She had resorted to answering Max’s calls now? “Um hello” she cleared her throat, “where’s Max?”

“And who’s this…”

“Its Liz”

“Oh. Max isn’t here right now”

“Where is he?”

“In the shower”

“Oh” Liz swallowed. Trying not to get herself into a state. He was in the shower, whilst Tess was in his room . . .answering his calls.

“You know Liz, I’ll pass on a message for you . . .if you like”

“Yeah. Sure. Tell him to call as soon as he’s out”

“Of course” Tess cut the connection. Having no intention of passing on any call. Whatsoever.


Max let the shower drain the tension from his muscles. He groaned inwardly as Liz played through his mind once again. Standing in the driveway, beautiful, serene Liz. The look of innocence in her eyes, the feel of her first real kiss to him. Had she meant it? Because it had meant so much to him. He hadn’t been able to get Liz out of his head all the way to Thailand . . .and he had done all he could to get her out of his head, thrown away the chain, blocked the thought that she’d ever be his. But the only thing that remained anymore was Liz. The only thing that seemed important anymore was Liz.

“Liz” He whispered the name softly and clenched his eyes together, hoping the water would drain away her imprinted presence that remained in his mind.

It didn’t work.


Turning off the shower and wrapping a towel around himself, he sauntered back into the room to see Tess fiddling with his cell.

“Phone call?” he asked curiously. He reached for another towel and began wiping off his body and running it through his hair.

“It was no one”

Max raised his eyebrow, throwing the towel on the bed beside her and picking up a T-shirt. “I heard it go off, it must have been someone”

With the spare hand he reached down for his cell, which was lying beside Tess now, but she grabbed it before he did.

“Okay, okay” Tess breathed, “It was Elizabeth”

Max stood back up; “Liz?” a serious expression clouded his face, “Is she okay?”

He grabbed the cell from Tess’s hand as if to make sure, it was her that had rung.

“See sweetie, I know your going through a rough patch right now, I didn’t want to make it worse”

Max glared at Tess, “Next time, pass on the message or don’t answer”

Tess was taken back at the coldness in his voice, “This is what I get for being a friend?” she looked down at her hands and back up at him, pursing her lips together.

Max saw that she was about to cry. Jesus. He used to be good with women. “Tess. Please understand, this could have been important. I should get all my calls, especially ones from Liz”

Tess looked up at him silently, before speaking “Max what’s wrong with you?” she began slowly “Since this marriage you’ve really changed. Your always tense, you never concentrate . . .you were never like this Max. Its not working for you, I mean--you were never settling down material. Some people just aren’t” she stuck out her chin, “and it’s not only me saying this either”

“Tess?” he questioned in a confused, yet scrutinizing voice “What exactly are you trying to say?”

“You and Liz . . .its not really working is it?”

Max shook his head and slowly sat opposite her, turning to face her fully.

*****


Liz slowly turned the page of the book she had ordered online a few days ago and cringed once again. It was called Pregnancy and After and she had thought maybe it would be helpful with information. That it was, it talked through early months all the way to giving birth and after.

Only that the graphic birth details were sending shivers down her spine, and the pictures . . .well they gave off way to much detail for liking. When in labour she planned to keep her eyes closed, maybe they could knock her out. There was just way too much blood . . .and stuff. She remembered not too long ago, when the class had watched a video in Sex Ed. She hadn’t taken to it too well.

It looked too painful, but so far away. Yet here she was and in just a few months . . .she gulped . . . Part of her was scared to death, part of her knew it was going to be the most amazing experience of her life. Painful and amazing.

She looked down at those pictures again. Wow- that head was way too big—

“Elizabeth” she slammed the book shut and twirled around to see Arthur standing behind the couch.

“Yes?” She asked slowly.

“I’ll be going home now” he smiled down, his usual warm smile at her, “It’s getting late” he glanced briefly at the clock and back to her.

“Okay Arthur”

“Will you be okay Elizabeth?” he asked looking concerned, “I don’t live far . . .but if you’d like me to stay . . .”

“Actually I would like it if you stayed” Liz returned his smile. She had to admit spending the night alone in such a big house unnerved her slightly. Having Arthur with her would make her feel a lot more comfortable.

“Okay dear--though as long as you can take me rattling my old brain cells off. I sometimes get this sudden itch to talk. And it’s usually about me. I’ll only stay if you won’t mind me going on of at a tangent”

“Of course I won’t mind” she smiled, “as long as you won’t mind if I fall asleep in the middle”

“You’ll only be one of many” he chuckled and sat down beside her. He looked briefly at the book she had in her hand, “What are you reading?”

“Oh nothing” she replied, “Just a little something to keep me occupied” She was trying to keep busy. Waiting . . .hoping that maybe he’d ring. That he'd gotten over his anger at her. No such luck yet.

“Why didn’t you go to Thailand, hmm? It’s a beautiful place”

Liz shrugged her shoulders, “So I’ve heard”

“Met my first wife there”

“Really?” Liz’s eyes widened and she leant toward him. Paying him her full attention now.

“Yes. I've been there numerous times” he nodded in memory and begun talking, like he warned he would. Liz listened attentively to the old man she had become extremely close to over the last few weeks.

The clouds had moved together and the pittar patter of rain could be heard outside. Liz and Arthur sat in the lounge, lost in stories of the past with mugs of home brewed tea.

Arthur took Liz into his world of storytelling. She delved deeper and deeper, until everything around became almost non-existent. He told her about his life, his wives, his work. He took her on a ride through his past, to present and she listened, enjoying the old man's company.


“So then it was at this time I met Max,” he continued.

“Just after your wife passed on?” she asked stifling a yawn, not realising how late it had gotten.

Arthur nodded his head, “he said he wouldn’t take no for an answer, saying he knew that I’d make a good housekeeper . . .I tell you he’s a stubborn one, when he gets his mind set its hard for him to take no for an answer--but the rest tomorrow eh?" he watched her yawn "you need your rest”

“No!” Liz sat up straight, blinking away any trace of sleep. “It just started getting interesting and not like I’ll be sleeping much anyway”

“10 minutes” he eyed her like a grandparent might his grandchild who wanted yet another bed time story.

“Okay” Liz nodded her head fervently, “So has Max um . . .always lived alone . . . has ever lived with anyone?”

Arthur looked confused. Then his expression changed as it slowly downed on him. “You mean with women? Surprisingly none—he’s lived with Tess however”

Oh. “He did?”

“Yes she came to live with him, just after her second divorce and he offered her a place to stay, until she found her own. It helped her a lot”

“So . . . “ Liz tapped her fingers on the book in her lap, “there was nothing romantic going on?”

Arthur began to laugh silently.

“What?”

“Max and Tess—strikes me as rather funny”

*****


“Its working out just fine,” Max continued, “and you know what your little suggestion suggests to me Tess?”

Tess’s eyes traced the contours of his bare chest and the way the towel moulded to his lower body, she looked up at his face and raised her eyes in question, “exactly what would that be Max?”

“You still have a thing for me . . .”

Tess opened her mouth to protest. But then changed he mind. It was about time he mentioned it. “Well actually . . .as much as I’d like to say your being cocky and up yourself. You’re actually right. I’m not over you”

Max got over her abruptness fast, “You don’t know how to take no for answer do you?” all the pieces were falling into place. How his and Tess’s proximity was beginning to irk Liz. Maybe she had thought, he was trying to rub Tess in her face. “I know how to sort out my business just fine” He grabbed his cell and walked out through the patio doors and stood over the balcony fuming.

Liz didn’t want him. Tess did. And him . . .he wanted Liz.

Another of image of her lips on his just before he had driven off cascaded through his memory. He thought about her 24/7. This obsession was driving him crazy. Tess was right. Liz was affecting him, now more then ever.


Tess glared at him as he rushed out of the room. He wasn’t taking this too well. It was that bitch. Liz. She was nothing but trouble. But still she'd remain true to her motto.

“Your right Max” she murmured, “I can’t take no for an answer, not now, not ever”

*****
-------------------------------------------------------

Ehh. Kill Tess.




[ edited 3 time(s), last at 3-Feb-2003 9:28:51 AM ]
posted on 15-Sep-2002 7:28:29 PM by babybunny

Quick Authors note

I hate keeping you guys hanging. Really. But I'm afraid I'm going to have to prolong your wait. ::hides:: I'm going away for a week-to good ol' Devon. (Unless your English you'll have no idea what I'm talking about)

I will begin writing another part as soon as I get back.

Luv ya' Miss ya' and the rest!

See you in a week.

Saira


posted on 22-Sep-2002 5:56:47 PM by babybunny
1-5-2

Authors Note


Hey guys I’m back! In actual fact I got back on Friday but I had to sleep for a whole day, because I was so tired. I had a great time in Devon. I’m part of a PTV team (as a way of filling my gap year before I go to uni) and it was amazing. Tiring but active week, including, rock climbing, caving and abseiling off a 100 foot bridge. Those of you that haven’t should really give it a go. Its better then being on a fayre ground ride. I’m also going travelling for a few months around December so I’m working on getting this story finished before then. Fingers crossed

Here are some responses to the amazing FB that I get for this story. Really sorry I can’t reply to everyone, but I really appreciate you guys putting in your time to read this story.


MandyHanford- They’re not that bad are they? LOL

Talena- The will admit to each other very soon. I can’t stand the tension much longer either, but then again, without the tension this story would be no where.

Flohmac, Izzy Lizzard- Frustration much? LOL. I know it’s frustrating but it’ll get better somewhere along the line.

Tori, Assilem_1, DestinyRos2005, Pegleg, Cglenn- Welcome to my story and thanks for reading and the great FB. IHTAYSDTC? I would understand why you would want to reopen considering her character in this story.

JassyBee- I always try and get back as soon as I can. Sorry for keeping you guys waiting so long!

Sci-fi Nut- Its really interesting to read all the opinions on the characters. Some of you think Max is in the wrong and some Liz. Please keep it coming.

Insanity- Too short? LOL. Jeez. . .

TigerLily- Yes the ‘cementing’ will come soon! I promise. - I know I keep saying that, but it’ll be sooner rather then later.

BelieveInTrueLove- You bring up interesting points. I will work on answering them throughout the fic.

LuvJB- see you in October. *wink*



I tried to get this part out as quick as I could so excuse me if it’s a bit crappy.

*Warning*- This part maybe a little angsty. Just citing so people know that it isn't for the easily upset.

I have posted in two parts due to page length restrictions. Anyway I'm going to shutup before I ramble on for a lifetime.

Marriage of Convenience

Part 13


Max absently looked at the array of people beneath the balcony, who were shimmying around like little dots, splashing in the pool, sunbathing in beach chairs, generally relaxing. He couldn’t remember the last time he had been relaxed.

He clutched his cell tightly in his hand and turned back to look behind him, through the half open patio doors. Knowing that Tess was there. Waiting. Wondering. He himself was waiting, wondering…

Glancing one more time at his cell, he pressed redial and held it to his ear.

*****

Liz rubbed her tired eyes and hearing a sudden noise, suddenly jerked up in her bed, looking around the large dark room-- trying to figure out what had woken her. The undrawn curtains reflected back the glow of the streetlights through her window and the busy hum of the phone reverberated through her ears once again.

She fumbled around for the receiver, subconsciously taking in the time as she reached for her it. It had to be Maria. Who else would be calling her this late? Then it hit her. Max . . . Maybe it was Max. She grabbed the phone and held it her ear, hoping that her guess was right.

“Max?” she yelled down the line before she could stop herself.

“Liz,” came the tired sounding reply.

“Um, hi” she began, wondering how to begin this conversation and end the mess she had started. She looked around the dimly lit room, wide-awake now.

“You called earlier --is everything okay?”

“Everything fine” she breathed, “and thanks for calling me back Max” she added politely.

“Not a problem Liz” he replied just as politely.

A long silence followed and Max cleared his throat, wondering if there was an actual reason for her calling.

“So—um I tidied up your room for you,” she stammered, in an attempt to make conversation.

She cleaned his room? Somehow that didn’t strike as an extremely appropriate reason to call, but then again, this was Liz. “You didn’t have to”

“I wanted to Max, you know I don’t do anything I don’t want to”

“Too well” came the sarcasm filled reply, which made Liz's cheeks colour.

He was still mad. “Max,”

“I’m not Liz”, he answered as if reading her thoughts across the telephone line.

“What?”

“Mad at you”

“Your not? —“ She asked, surprised. She would be mad if he had said the things she had said to him. “Well . . .the reason I called you earlier, was because I wanted to clear the air, I hope this isn’t too much to ask,” she continued frantically, “but you went without me being able to fully explain and I guess what I’m trying too say is--can we forget about everything that was said? —I feel so bad ever since—I truly cannot say how sorry—“ she took a deep breath, trying to find the right words, to express what she was feeling, but she found herself at a loss, because the truth of it was, she wasn’t sure what it was that she was feeling.

“Liz,” Max cut her short, “I’m willing to forget if you are, I have an apology to make too— I wasn’t really the nicest person, especially since your hormones are going hay wire due to the pregnancy, I really had no excuse“

Liz nodded her head, feeling small tears at the back of her eyes. She had no idea why she was so emotional. But she was crying. And they weren’t tears of sadness; she knew that, much for sure.

Max had accepted! He wasn’t mad! It made her indescribably happy. She took a deep breath, “ I was thinking . . .”

“Yes?”

“I was thinking that maybe we could start off—maybe as friends . . . ”

“Sure,” Max nodded his head silently, thinking he would like that. He would like that very much.

Liz was so delighted, her heart sang. “Really?” she asked a private smile appearing on her face. Max maybe with Tess, but right now it didn’t matter. He had agreed to start off. Deep inside her it felt like more then enough, more then she deserved.

“Friends . . . it is” Max smiled slightly for the first time since he had left home, shaking his head at the enthusiasm the reverberated from the other side.

Friends. It was better then nothing.

Liz bounced back, before another silence clouded their conversation. “Make sure you don’t have too much fun without me, I’m kind of missing you” Well . . . she was missing him a lot. Way too much then she could ever admit to him right now.

Now it was Max’s turn to be surprised. Liz was missing him? “Missing you more Liz” he recovered quickly.

“Really?”

Max grinned, “mm-hmm, haven’t been able to get you out of my mind, crazy really” he answered truthfully.

“Oh,” she had no idea if he was playing with her or serious.

“How’s our little kiddo?”

“Making mammas life a little difficult” Liz smiled looking down at her belly, “Kicking up a fuss—” her voice trailed off when she realised what he had just said. Our? Had he just said our kiddo?

“Aah I can see where he got that from”

Liz rolled her eyes and bit her lip. Wanting so much for him to be by her side right now. Strangely she was becoming more and more sure, by very flying second how much she was in love with him. She admitted it. She was in love.

In love with Max Evans.

She wanted to fly around the room and dance to the unknown turne playing in her head.

“Tell baby that I’m missing him” Max voice hummed back, Liz felt warmth rush through her. Then a small kick in her belly.

“I think baby heard,” she answered quietly.

Max grinned. “Well baby’s quite clever, must have got that from his fath—“ he abruptly stopped mid sentence. He had almost forgotten himself for a moment then. That he, Max Evans wasn’t the father. That the baby Liz was carrying wasn’t his own flesh and blood.

Liz closed her eyes tight and opened them again, not missing the mistake he had almost made in calling the baby his own. Only if he was the father . . .things would have been a lot different. “Max” she breathed, “there’s so much I need to say—“

“There’s so much I need to hear Liz . . .”

She sighed. “You do realise now that we’re friends I’m going to have to ring you everyday until you come back?”

“No, not unless I get there first”

Liz’s grin widened. “Did I say I missed you?”

“No, I don’t think so” Max answered cheekily.

“Well--I miss you”

“How much?”

“A little”

“Just a little?”

“Maybe, a little more then little”

Max began to chuckle slowly on the other end and Liz pouted. “What’s so funny?”

“Nothing”

"Nothing? but your laughing!"

Tess peered at Max from behind the patio doors, her hand resting against the glass and her mind overworking itself. She grimaced at the way he was acting. You would never have guessed that they had an argument a moment ago. That smile on his face, that playful look. It was making her sick.

Oh well. Tess didn’t plan on losing this fast. She never lost. She walked to the bar and poured herself a drink, before clambering back on to the bed and closing her eyes, trying her best to regain the composure she had almost lost.



“If there’s anything you need Liz, anything at all. Don’t hesitate to call me”

“I won’t Max” Liz smiled brightly from the other end. They had just talked about nothing and everything for over and hour. She could feel the sleep filling her eyes and she knew that she should let him go. Yet she didn’t want to put the receiver down. It was like a never-ending trance, his magnetism still pulled her even though he was so far away. “So I guess—I’ll talk to you tomorrow?”

“I’ll call you tomorrow Liz”

“You better”

“Trust me”



Liz smiled down at the receiver as she hung up the phone, a sense of hope filling her. Maybe she could make this friendship turn into something more. Now that she had a stepping-stone, she didn’t want to stop until she reached the top. She wanted the prize. Her husband.


Max hung up and took a deep breath of fresh air. Wanting to go home more then ever. His thoughts were clouded with Liz, this time even more intense and he tried to shake away the thought of ever being with her. She was a friend now. Just a friend, he had to get used to it, because he didn’t want to spoil what he had. But, he couldn’t help thinking about how he was going to woo her once he had got home.

He walked back inside to see Tess lying in the need, a drink sitting beside her. Not really knowing what to say, he sauntered over to his suitcase and pulled out a pair of trousers, pulling them on. After discarding his towel, he began fastening up his suitcase.

“Where are you going?” Tess sat up, legs folded, her blue eyes penetrating into his amber ones.

“Going to a different hotel,” he replied without looking up.

“Max!” she sighed, slipping off the bed and walking around to him ”You can’t go, this can be sorted out”

“How Tess?” Max put his suitcase down beside the bed and stood to face her directly, “how on Earth can this be sorted out? I'm with Liz, me and you . . its not right”

“Max” she moved forward and put her hand on his chest.

Any other day, Max would have thought nothing of that simple gesture, but now he was beginning to realise what it all meant. Taking a step back he shook his head. “I don’t know what you were thinking, in fact I don’t want to know. I’ve always respected you Tess and I don’t want to think any different. But I’m married, Liz is pregnant—we can’t do this, me staying here will just make our situation more awkward”

Tess rolled her eyes, then abruptly took a step backward. Shrugging her shoulders in a confidant manner. “Your right, I’ll see you at the meeting Max”

Max nodded his head, before picking up his suitcase and heading for the door. “Take care,”

Tess watched him walk out without looking back and rolled her eyes. Max was stupid, they were meant to be together, why couldn’t he see?


BRB

[ edited 2 time(s), last at 3-Feb-2003 9:44:07 AM ]
posted on 22-Sep-2002 5:58:55 PM by babybunny
Marriage of Convenience

Part 13 Cont'



2 Days later.

Liz had decided on helping Arthur make breakfast in the kitchen. She was in a good mood as Max had just called, even though they hadn’t talked very long, him calling always put her in a lighter mood. She had waited all morning for his phonecall and when he talked to her, it sent tingles through her body. It was mainly friendly and polite natter, but she looked forward to hearing his voice all the same.

He had said he had a meeting today and that meant there were only three more days before his flight back. It made her feel all light and fluttery when she thought about what she would say to him once he got back. Once he got back things were going to be different, because she was going to tell him the truth.

Yes, Liz Parker was going to finally admit how she really felt. She had decided that just as dawn had peeked through her curtains this morning and she had never been so sure about any decision in her whole life. Butterflies were cascading through her stomach, yet she had never been so excited.

She picked up the eggs and cracked them on the side of the frying pan, before throwing them in. “You know Arthur, I’ve decided to treat myself today. I’m going shopping”

Arthur looked at her hesitantly, “Well make sure you take someone”

“Of course” she beamed back. “Your coming with me!” she smiled chirpily without waiting for his confirmation. “Now— where’s the tea towel?” she bent down peered into the oven, where the sweet corn cobs were cooking.

“Liz sit down,” Arthur groaned for the fifth time, watching her bend down and stand up and bend down again. She really wasn’t acting like a pregnant woman should. “I’ll do it”

“No I’m good—“ the doorbell cut her off, “Okay old man, you get your wish this time," she rolled her eyes playfully, "I’ll get the door”

Liz almost skipped to the front door and opened it to be confronted by an absolutely massive bunch of roses. “ Hi?” she peered behind the forest of flowers, trying to look at the face that was concealed by them.

“Delivery” came the muffled reply.

“Oh. Yeah. Of course” Liz took the heavy bunch from his hand, put them on the small table beside her, and signed for them on the pad that the man held out to her. Who in turn gave her a relieved smile that indicated he was glad he wasn’t carrying that huge casket of roses anymore.

“Um, Thank you” she nodded at the man before picking up the biggest bundle of white roses she had ever seen, stumbling into the kitchen and putting them down on the dining room table. She reached for the small card the sat nestled in the middle of the roses.

Arthur wiped his hand on the tea towel and moved forward. “Lovely,” he smiled. “From Max?”

Liz slowly opened the card and saw a small message scribbled inside.

A little something from a friend,

Max.


Liz nodded her head slowly, her mind filling with happiness. “Yeah. Max”

She put her hand over the bundle and ran them over the white blooming buds. She loved white flowers, and white--it was her favourite colour. She leant down to take in the rosy scent when the doorbell rang once again. “I’ll get that,” she chirped as Arthur turned back to the cooking food.

Another man stood outside with a clipboard in his hand. “Mrs Evans?” he asked.

“Yes” Liz nodded her head slowly, feeling a little overwhelmed. Another delivery?

He held out a small envelope to her, along with a signing pad “Sign here please” Liz signed once again and took the envelope from him. Wondering what it was this time. Who was it from? She slowly began opening the manila envelope, curiously.

“Ma’am, its very nice” the deliveryman pointed to her right. Still unwrapping the envelope Liz took a step away from the front door and on to the porch outside. She saw lorry doors closing and right beside it sat a beautiful Mercedes coupe, convertible, in a shocking yellow colour, that screamed class.

Liz tore open the rest of the envelope quickly and pulled out a key as well as a small message on a gold card.

I know how much you hate taking drivers,
So take the car,

Max.


Liz gulped trying to take it in. A car. Max had bought her a car.

Liz started giggling. If it was possible she had fallen even more in love with Max. Was she shallow enough to be bought by a car? When the car looked like that- yes siree!

“Thank you” Liz looked at the man, still trying to muffle her laughter, as he walked away. Max was crazy. How on Earth had he bought her a car from all the way from Thailand? She tried remember the date . . . nope it wasn’t even her birthday!

Oh god. He’s crazy. She thought as she stood beside the car and ran her hand over the bonnet. The only car she had ever had was a battered Ford Fiesta that she had bought second hand. But this, this was definitely something else.

The ringing phone caught her attention and she was running back inside as fast as her little legs could take, knowing who it was before she picked up the phone.

“MAX!” she yelled, “I can not believe you!”

Max grinned as he waited outside the meeting reception. “So you like?”

“Oh I love it! . . .but”

“No buts Liz”

“But Max”

“What did I say?” he asked in a put on stern voice, “ No buts-if not as anything else—take the gift as a friend”

Liz shook her head, still out of breath from the run. “I love it”

“I’m glad”

“And I’ll love it even more when your back home with me” she responded before she could stop herself. She meant it with all her heart.

Max took a deep breath from the other side, wondering how much she meant it. Did she really want him to come home that much?

The last two days had gone past extremely slowly. He had done a little sight seeing by himself. He had bought a few gifts for Liz and the baby. But his heart hadn’t been in it. All he wanted was to get back home too. He definitely wanted to be back to her more then she could ever imagine. In fact right now he was imagining things that really shouldn’t be going through his mind before a board meeting.

From the corner of his eyes he saw the meeting room open, which mean it was his cue to go. “Liz, I have to go now. I’ll call you back as soon as this meeting is over”

After saying goodbye, he flipped his cell shut and curtly walked into the boardroom. He was faced with Tess who sat shimmering casually in her blue suit.

Looking away from her eyes he took his seat next to her; they had made no contact what so ever since he had left her in that hotel room two days ago. Things would have been awkward if he stayed and he was sure he had done the right thing.

A few other associates sat around the table and Mr Montri, a bald Thai man walked in to the meeting room and shook their hands, in turn. “Mr Evans, Ms Harding nice to meet you”

Max nodded back. “My pleasure”

****

Liz gulped down her juice and picked up a corncob. “Lets go now, I’m dying to take the new car for a drive”

Arthur shook his head at her excitement. Sometimes she acted as old as the hills and sometimes, she acted like an over active child. He often forgot how old she really was. Barely an adult.

“Liz” he said sternly, I have a few things to do. “I need to pop over and visit my grandson who is ill first”

Liz’s shoulders hunched. “Fine. Okay. I’ll wait”

Arthur watched her enthusiasm wane. “We’ll go as soon as I get back—we’ll even watch that movie you wanted to see if you like”

Liz tried to hide her smile. There was no way Arthur was going to sit through a smuttier remake of American Pie. “Sure Arthur—sounds good”

She waved him goodbye, telling him to make it back as soon as he could and clambered up the stairs and into her room to lie down. Recently, especially since the last couple of days she had begun to feel drained at times after bursts of energy, and there was always a continual dull aching in the small of her back, which worsened at times. But she hadn’t bothered mentioning it to Arthur, he worried way too much as it was, and she didn’t really like being treated like s small child.

Deciding that a nap might help she curled over on her side and took her hand under her belly, before slowly closing her eyes.

A sudden pain in her lower belly made her eyes fly open and her sit up with a start. Pain, it was definitely pain. It felt like the baby had kicked, but extra hard. Before she could figure out what was happening another seared through her starting at her lower abdomen and engulfing her body. It made her cry out and her eyes water. What the hell was that?

Trembling she stumbled out of bed and slowly began to walk toward the bathroom. Taking deep breaths and trying to keep calm.

A never changing mantra playing through her mind. Keep calm. Keep Calm. Keep Calm. Where the hell was Arthur, when you needed him? Why did he have to go right now? Where had he said he was going? Keep Calm. Keep Calm. Keep Calm. Breath. Liz . . .Breath

“Arghhhhhhhh FUCK” she doubled over in pain and fell to the ground, when she opened her eyes she found herself sitting on her knees. She bent over, feeling the blood rush in her head, as it dawned on her what was happening. She clawed at the carpet and began crying in loud heart wrenching sobs.

*****


Max pointed at the pie chart on the board. “And finally the plan of action, includes getting the Dutch bank and Major corporations in France and Japan to join the bond paying, prior to capitalisation, if we get enough support ETA finance will in no doubt overcome the smaller obstacles that it is facing. Therefore the first thing that should be done is put this query forward to the board of seniors, unless there are any other ideas” finishing off the presentation, he sat back down beside Tess.

Montri nodded his head as a round of applause sounded across the room. “That sounds fine to me, Ms Harding, Mr Evans. Your company in no doubt is progressing wonderfully worldwide”

“ Well I can’t really take the blame for that” Tess smiled. “Max is quite the business man”

“I can see that” Montri nodded, “You two make quite a team.” Tess’s eyes met Max’s and Max looked down at his hands, trying to ignore the subtle hints she had kept dropping throughout the whole meeting.

“There was no problem in changing this meeting to earlier rather then later. In fact it worked in my favour . . .” Montri continued, his voice seemed to fade off as Max turned to glare at Tess. She had changed the meeting? Why on Earth . . .?

Shit. Jesus! How could he have been so blind? The final puzzle piece fit perfectly.

Tess had been plotting to break them up. Tess had changed the meeting times after she had found out about their argument…how could she?

Meeting Tess’s eyes, he knew she knew too.

The meeting was announced closed and he made his way out of the room, turning to her as soon as he stepped into the corridor. Blind anger coursing through his veins. No wonder Liz had decided not to come to Thailand . . .

“What the hell were you thinking Tess! how could you?’ he was so furious, words were becoming hard to form. It was beginning to fall into place, all of it. Liz’s reactions, her blaming Tess, for what was happening. He was surprised that he hadn’t noticed sooner.

Even if Liz were going to leave him after the baby was born, he would never cheat on her. He had given her his word.

Tess moved forward. “Calm down Max” she lowered her voice, and looked around the corridor trying to downplay the scene, it didn’t help that everyone knew who they were.

"NO, what the hell were you thinking? Things can never work between us. I want to make that clear, do you understand?”

“Yes they can” she sauntered forward.

“What?” Max asked, not sure if he had heard right.

“Yes they can,” Tess move forward again, until there was only a smidgen of space between them. “Max, she doesn’t care about you, not as much as I do”

Max groaned. “Stop it Tess”

“I can’t!” with that she leant forward and stroked the side of his face, before kissing it slowly. Not caring now at a number of people who were pretending unsuccessfully not to look at them.

Evans and Harding. The gossip vine would be exploding soon enough. There was always no doubt that there was something going on between the two.

Max stood rooted to the spot. Even he hadn’t expected that. Tess looked into his eyes and moved forward, her lips only inches apart from his.

“What the hell are you doing!” Max took both her hands and shoved them back. “Stop it Tess” he hissed. “I don’t want to do this, but I’m going to have to take extreme measures if I have to”

Tess grabbed his arms, “Do what you what Max, you can’t stop me”

Max shook his head. “You need a therapist” he glowered, gritting his teeth.

“I need you”

Max saw the blonde women in front of him for the first time. He saw her in a completely different light. Max realised, he really had been blind, trusting her, believing what she had said. Thinking that what they had formed a bond as friends. Past experiences should have taught him never to trust again. Especially women. But here it was-- happening again. He had trusted.

“And all that about Liz coming along, what the hell were you planning?”

“Nothing”


“I’ve had it up to hear with lies!” He gestured above his head and took two steps backward, “I’m going Tess and before I go I want to make something very, very clear. Keep out of my life, the only time I want to see you is at work, about work. If you care about me in the least you’ll do as I say—we no longer have a friendship anymore, and if Mr. Montri needs me any time this week, tell him what happened, or lie. Your pretty good at that”

Tess watched him turn around and retreat the corridor. “Where are you going Max!”

He turned his profile toward her for a second, “home—to my wife” with that he slid through the revolving doors and was gone.

****

Liz threw up in the toilet and then used the bathroom door handle to support herslef whilst trying to stand up straight, trying to make the awful dizziness go way.

The pain was getting stronger and she could feel a warm oozing between her legs. She closed her eyes and led her heavily shaking hand between her legs. Fearing the worse and not wanting to open her eyes, she bought her hand back up, level to her face.

When she looked down at her hand another sob wracked through her body, “No, no, no, no” her voice came out strangled and no louder then a whisper. She continued shaking her head helplessly. Denying that this could happen to her. This couldn’t be true. Her baby had been so alive a few hours ago; she could feel him—inside her, becoming more and more a part of her. This had to be a dream! It had to be.



All she could she was Blood. Blood as dark as thick velvet all over her fingers. Panicking, she began making guttural sounds at the back of her throat. There was only one thing she could think of doing and that was gettiing to the hospital and fast.

She stumbled down he staircase, grinding her teeth together, trying to stop the unbearable pain between her legs, that was shooting up and down hr body blindingly.

Grabbing the key of the new car that was sitting on the dining room table, she ran outside opening the door and stumbling inside the Mercedes coupe, all the time trying to breath, trying to understand what was going on, why it was happening to her. Why? Barely breathing she frantically started the car and floored the gas pedal.

She drove as fast as she could, tears flowing freely now. She wasn’t sure what was happening to her or why, but it was all unfair. She couldn’t lose this baby. It meant so much to her, she just couldn’t . . . She needed to get to a hospital and fast, but somewhere in the back of her mind, she knew it was too late.

Breathing hard she flew past blurry cars, sidewalks trees.

Suddenly another horrendous cramp seared through her, making see white dots at the same time. She looked down at her blood-covered dress through her blurry, tear-filled eyes and realised what a big mistake she had made in deciding to drive to the hospital. Before she could stop herself, her legs gave in and the car uncontrollably swerved toward a ditch.

She closed her eyes, a silent scream escaping her lips as her whole life flashed in front of her.

TBC


Also for those of you who want to read something new I just started a new fic. Between you and I. It’s in my Siggy—go check it out!

Yes, I am shamelessly plugging it.





[ edited 3 time(s), last at 22-Sep-2002 6:50:31 PM ]
posted on 6-Oct-2002 5:49:32 AM by babybunny
quote:
Insanity originally wrote:
When are we gonna get an update?
I'm DYING here dear!
*bounce*


Sheeesh. I'm sorry. I actually had most of it typed up yesterday, but you know how the disk your saving your work on decides to throw a tantrum- yeah well, you get the picture. I was too peed to write anymore after that.

I'm off to work now but will try and get it finished tonight.

Ciao
posted on 6-Oct-2002 3:37:56 PM by babybunny
Sorry about the massive the wait guys!

Last time

Suddenly another horrendous cramp seared through her, making see white dots at the same time. She looked down at her blood-covered dress through her blurry, tear-filled eyes and realised what a big mistake she had made in deciding to drive to the hospital. Before she could stop herself, her legs gave in and the car uncontrollably swerved toward a ditch.

She closed her eyes, a silent scream escaping her lips as her whole life flashed in front of her.




Marriage of Convenience

Part 14




Beep. Beep. Beep. Beep.

The sound wouldn’t go away, no matter how hard she tried to block out its devastatingly, mechanic noise.

Beep. Beep. Beep. Beep.

Liz slowly opened her only to be confronted by white starkness. It hurt and it was surrounding her, engulfing her inside and out. God it hurt so badly. She closed her eyes again, because it made the thumping noise in her head recede a little.

Whispering, like leaves being ushered in the wind surrounded her, until soon, it was gone too.


******


It seemed as if years had passed in the last hour. But yet, Max still sat beside her, hoping and praying. He had forgotten how many times he had checked for some kind of movement, some sign of life, some confirmation that she was going to be okay. But there was none. It seemed like she had lain like this forever and he had sat holding her hand for even longer, but he’d sit here for eternity if need be.

“Liz,” he breathed her name in a strangled sob and pressed her cool hand against his mouth, but as usual there was no reply. She lay, cool and unmoving.

This entire epic was his fault, he thought for the hundredth time. He shouldn’t have left her; he shouldn’t have bought her that car. What kind of husband was he? Leaving her when she was pregnant and needy. He shouldn’t have gone to Thailand, especially after that massive row they had, had. It must have been so much stress on the baby.

He glanced down at her porcelain features one more time and reassured himself, that she was going to be okay. He was going to make sure of that. Anything it took, to make Liz better, he would do, and no power in the world could stop him from getting her what she needed.

He continued to gaze at her beautiful face, eyes closed, hint of small colour on her cheeks, yet looking so fragile. She looked so much like his fairy . . .calm, peaceful, unresponsive. He breathed and unspoken sigh. She was beautiful. Even asleep and helpless like this, he was awestruck. He leant down slightly to kiss the side of her temple.

“Mr Evans?” Max lifted his head from Liz turned around to face Doctor Henridge. The doctor that had looked after his wife all this time. He motioned for Max to follow him.

Max tiredly got up from his stiff, orange, chair that always sat beside Liz and followed the doctor into a further corner of the room.

“When is going to wake up?” he asked hoarsely, “she can’t stay like this forever” Max searched the doctors grey eyes for answers. “You have to do something. Get the best equipment. Fly her to a better hospital, whatever you need, I’ll pay”

“She’s already in one of the best hospitals in London” the doctor answered with raised eyebrows. “I can’t give you a written out guarantee Max, we can’t tell when a patient will come out of a coma” Dr. Henridge looked at the distraught young man in front of him, feeling that there was more he could do for him. “-But”

“Damn it” Max cursed, slamming his hand hard against the wall in frustration. “How long can she stay like this? its been three weeks. Three fucking weeks!”

“But,” the doctor continued to hold Max’s gaze steady. Sometimes it was harder to deal with the patients families, then it was with the patients themselves, “even though I cannot guarantee anything . . . the monitor detected activity last night” he continued to watch Max closely, as if he was the patient that needed tending to.

Max’s head jerked, “What does that mean?”

The doctor responded slowly, making Max want to grab him and shake him. “We don’t usually give patients false hope until we’re completely sure, but we’ve been detecting short bursts of activity over the last couple of days now . . .” he wanted to give him atleast some reassurance, he had never seen anyone so devastated.

Max continued to stare at the doctor. He wasn’t sure whether he should punch him for not filling him on Liz sooner, or hug him for telling the good news. So that was why the doctor had been taking him into the corner for these little talks. Liz was coming around; it meant that she might be able to hear him. . .

His head was reeling. Liz was going to be okay, she was going to wake up and talk and look and feel, unlike that the living zombie he looked at day in and day out.


They had said there would be no guarantee that she would wake up . . . he had refused to believe it, saying that she would come around. He would make her, and he had been right all along.

Max had no idea how the three weeks passed since that awful day, but they had, and he had no idea if he could cope with Liz being like this any longer . . .He wouldn’t put anyone through the hell he had been through in the last three weeks.

“Just last night, we believe Liz gained consciousness for a few seconds” the doctor continued “and I believe that there is a very strong chance of Liz being with us—fully, soon”

Max’s heart leapt, “how long is soon?”

The doctor gave a small smile, “It could be days, weeks, months—I hope it’s a lot sooner . . .but remember Max, like I said, there’s no guarantee in these situations”

"Thank you" Max silently nodded his head and the doctor gave him a pitiful smile before walking away.

A sudden noise sounded from the monitors across the room and he was beside Liz in a heartbeat. Nurses shimmied all around him, fiddling with wires that covered Liz and the monitor beside her, that detected her brain activity.

He tried to look at Liz, as the monitor continued to beep, but they all stood in the way, blocking out his view. “Excuse me Mr Evans” a nurse came up behind him and he moved to the side, where he was able to take in full view of Liz. To his amazement he saw her lashes flutter. His stomach twirled in anticipation, was she going to open her eyes for the first time since Arthur had rang him at the airport and told him what had happened? Since he had seen Liz, covered in blood and unconscious. When the doctors had said they could do nothing for the baby . . . when the baby had gone . . .

He swallowed trying to make some moisture in his dry mouth.

As fast as she had showed signs of movement, it disappeared, taking Max’s hopes away with it. The monitor steadied and Liz’s eyes were closed. Just like before, she lay unmoving and still.

The nurses slowly moved away, going back to their daily duties and Max was left alone with her once again.

He sat back down in the orange chair rubbing at the sleep in his eyes. He looked down at her, at the beautiful face he had mesmerised perfectly over the last few weeks. The way she had the tiniest beauty spot on her left cheek, the way her upper lips curved a few millimetres downward, making a prefect shape, the way the stubborn curl at the left of her temple, just above that amazing purple bruise refused to budge no matter how much he stroked it back.

He sighed, and took hold of her hand once again, gently rubbing his thumb against her palm, “Liz, I don’t know if I’m ever going to have the chance to say this once you wake up and realise what’s happened, but . . . I love you” his voice croaked with emotion and he meant it with all his heart. “I don’t know how, but I’ve loved you since the first say I saw you—I just wish that there could have been something more between us”

When she woke up and realised what had happened, she was going to want to go back to the country, why would she want to live with him? After all there was no incentive to anymore. There was no baby. But he knew that he’d always have a place for her somewhere inside him.

He wondered what the baby would have looked like, if he had survived. What kind of mother Liz would have made. What kind of father would he, Max Evans have been?

“Wake up” he murmured, stretching out to touch her smooth pale throat and running his fingers up it to her soft lips. “Wake up soon baby”

A hand on his shoulder broke him from his thoughts. He turned around to see Anthony looking strangely sober, with Petra standing behind him looking like he felt.

“Be patient Maxwell” the older man gave him half a smile and Max tried to swallow the lump in his throat, nodding his head as best as he could.

*****


Petra’s eyes never left Max, even as he sat, lost in thought, holding onto Liz’s limp hand. She doubted he had once let go of her hand since the day she had ended up in that bed.

She had never seen him; look so sad, so lost, so vulnerable—well, not since the very first time she had met him. When she had arrived at a party at the manor and felt an instant connection to this lost boy. It was that day; he had become the son that she had always wanted.

She gazed at him, knowing how inwardly tortured he was even though he was putting on a brave face. She said a silent prayer for him, not wishing this upon her worst enemy. Her Max didn’t deserve this. He had been through so much already. She prayed that Liz would survive; she had seen how much he cared for her, especially over the last few weeks. She couldn’t even begin to think what he would go through if he lost her.
After all these years, he’d found a girl that truly meant something. Petra wouldn’t be able to bare it if this way taken away from him too.

“Stop it,” his voice broke her thoughts and Petra looked at Max questioningly.

“Stop what?”

For the first time in the last hour, since Anthony had gone into the café to get something to drink and most likely then not get something for his nerves, Max tore his eyes away from Liz to look at Petra.

“Stop worrying about me”

Petra shook her head; “ I was doing no such thing” she lied.

“Right . . .” Max quipped in a disbelieving tone and looked back at Liz.

There was silence once again, where only the beeping of Liz’s monitor could be heard cascading through the room. “She’s going to be okay,” he said it so confidently that anyone would have believed that, that was how he felt.

But, Petra knew otherwise, she could tell how very afraid he was of losing her, how shattered he was. How his voice gave off the smallest tremor when he spoke.

“Oh Maxwell,” in an instance Petra had risen up from her chair and shimmied past idle Liz on the bed and she was holding Max’s head to her bosom. “Everything’s going to work out—you hear? None of this is your fault. Everything that has happened, NONE of it was ever your fault honey, please understand that . . .please”

When she looked down, she noticed more turmoil and hurt in his eyes then she could handle. Her own eyes filled, and she was crying. “Max, I love you honey” she whispered reassuring words hoping that they would work. When were things going to work out for her poor baby?


*****

It was late and he was drifting in and out of consciousness. It was the time when you were drifting between the world of sleep and world of wakefulness, but Max knew he’d jerk awake before sleep could come and take him away. He’d been doing that for the last three weeks. Since he had seen his worst nightmare come to life, when they had rushed Liz into ICU and he had thought he’d never see her alive again.

His head lay across her shoulder as he lay forward in his chair. He could feel her soft breath caressing his cheek. It almost felt as if she was just asleep, lying next to him and she would wake up any moment now touch him and talk to him.

His hand subconsciously moved under the bed covers to lay across her now flat stomach, which was moving up and down in steady rhythm. How on Earth was he going to tell her about the baby? The way she would react was making his skin crawl already.

His hand moved upward, slowly stroking the soft cotton of her gown up to the bottom of her ribcage. He groaned inwardly as a surge of need racked through his body. He needed her awake, to be with him, for her to need him too.

He felt sudden tickling on the side of his face assuming it was some loose fabric, he wiggled his head trying to shrug it off. But it didn't stop. Then he felt something in his hair.

Someone was touching his hair.

He jerked up; shrugging off his sleep filled eyes and looked down at Liz. Who in return stared right back at him. Her large eyes wide and searching him like a little lost child.

Max stood up, his chair toppling back with force as he continued to stare at her.

Liz! Was she really awake? He rubbed his eyes vigorously, making sure it wasn’t the dream that she had many times before.


“Liz . . .” he began slowly and instantly sat beside her again.

He leant forward and touched the side of her cheek, to make sure she was really there. He wanted to make sure that this really was Liz staring up at him. Before he knew it he was holding her in his arms raining kisses on her face. “Oh Liz, baby, how are you feeling? God Liz, I thought I’d never see you like this again” he put his hands on the side of her face and bought it forward too his, “Don’t ever do that again” he breathed, holding her face close to his.

Liz looked surprised, her mouth opened then shut again as she looked at the man in front of her. Max leant back slightly, facing her intensely, his heart beating hard. “Are you okay? How are you feeling? Does anything hurt?” he fired a hundred questions at her at once. Then realising how tight he was holding into her, he loosened his grip on her. She was still going through the healing process and he didn’t want to hurt her even more.

Liz continued to stare at him with a startled expression closing in on her face.

“Liz?” Max repeated, sure that something was wrong now. “Liz what’s wrong?” he looked her over for any sign of injury.

Liz searched his face slowly and then looked at him with trembling lips, “Who are you?” she whispered.

Max gulped and leant back, “Liz, I’m Max, Max Evans” he waited for her to speak. She didn’t know who he was? How could she not know who he was?

Liz bought her small hands on top of his and pulled them away from her face. “Who are you?” she repeated.

She didn’t recognise him. The rugged, yet handsome stranger was touching her and talking to her like he knew her. But she had no idea who he was . . . For the first time, since her eyes had opened to see a dark head on her shoulder; she looked around, taking in her surroundings. Stark white walls, a beeping monitor, and a metal-railed bed. The vivid smell of antiseptic.

She was in hospital.

Oh god, she was in hospital. She looked down at her rumpled white gown and all the tubes sticking through her arms, she also felt the throbbing on her head and reached out to touch a humongous ache at the top of her forehead. She flinched when it throbbed at her touch.

“It’s a bruise Liz, it needs time to heal,” Liz looked back at the amber eyed man. Her breath quickening.

“Where am I? How did I get here?” so many questions tumbled through her head at the same time that her rusty tongue was unable to voice them all. She was scared.

Max stared at Liz dumbfounded. “Wait. You don’t remember?”

Liz shook her head, trying to take deep breaths. She was so confused, her eyes shot up to meet his. “Who . . .” she gulped, as panic began engulfing her, “Who am I?”

Max inhaled a deep breath of air. “You . . .you don’t know who you are?” he knew he was just repeating after her, but everything was happening too fast. He was too struck to find anything intelligent to say.


Liz shook her head vigorously, looking lost. “I . . .I don’t remember anything . . . I don’t remember”

Shegulped, trying to stop shaking. She felt disorientated and detached and she had no idea what was going on.

“Liz . . .” Max touched the side of her hand and watched her flinch back at his touch. “I’m your, I’m . . .your husband” he pulled his hand back from hers, so that she would feel comfortable.

He saw her chocolate eyes, widen. Then she slowly shook her head. “I don’t remember.” She continued to bombard him with large eyed look. “I don’t remember . . . I don’t remember . . .”

TBC...

Lolita, loved the poem *wink*


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 6-Oct-2002 4:06:50 PM ]
posted on 15-Oct-2002 4:53:42 PM by babybunny

Marriage of Convenience

Chapter 15




“Its temporary amnesia” Doctor Henridge repeated the words carefully at the same time as scribbling in doctor nonsense on a piece of paper at his desk.

It was the next morning and the night before remained fully imprinted in Max’s mind. At first he had been too stunned to respond, when Liz had given away what had happened to her. She couldn’t have really lost her memory—what about everything . . .everything that had happened? Was it all lost in the inner depths of her mind?

Thankfully the doctor had arrived and given her an injection to calm her down and help her sleep, before he could say anything much to Liz. After watching her sleep for a few hours, and knowing that this time he’d see her awake the next day, Max had gone home and showered before falling into a dreamless sleep. For the first time in weeks, he had slept through the night. Liz had lost her memory but she was going to be okay, that was all that mattered. Any other obstacle seemed minute in comparison.

“I know that” Max answered the doctor. “But why—how did happened?”

“Its not an uncommon occurrence for a patient to lose memory temporarily after a traumatic event or as after affects of a knock to the head . . .” the doctor answered quickly as if he knew this question was coming, he looked up slightly to address Max whilst screwing the lid back onto his bic, “Liz has unfortunately experienced both—what she needs is attention and lots of care, and like any other patient that has experienced such an event, her memory will begin to come back slowly . . .” Dr. Henridge cleared his throat and gave Max a solemn smile, “there’s really nothing to worry about”. Max’s eyes were fixed intently on the doctor as he continued. “I’m sure she’ll be as good as new soon enough, I advise you not to force her to remember, she’s sure to regain slowly”

“I agree” Max replied, “I don’t want to make her anymore distraught then she is, and right now the less she remembers about the accident the best”

The doctor gave Max a slight smile. He had spent most of the morning going through everything that had happened to Liz. The miscarriage, the accident, the knock to the head and now that amnesia. Max had listened very intently, which made the doctor think that if he dismissed Liz, this very day she’d probably get as much or even more care then the best nurses in his hospital could give her. Max could do a job well, he could tell—only he had never seen anyone so . . . persistent.

Max seemed to have forgotten that he did have other patients to tend to too. “Is there anything else you’d like to be briefed on Mr. Evans?” the doctor asked in an attempt to close this all morning, now going onto afternoon discussion.

“Yes” Max replied slowly, “ May I go and see my wife?”

*****


“I really don’t want to drink that”

“I’m afraid you have to”

“Do I?”

“Its very good for you”

“It doesn’t look too good,” Liz screwed her nose at the substance that the nurse was holding to her mouth, when the corner of her eyes caught someone walking toward her.

She tore her mouth away from the liquid before daring to taste a drop and turned to look at the man who had just walked into her room. It was the man that she had encountered yesterday. Her husband. She had wondered when she’d see him again. He had left quite an impression yesterday, even though she was only partially able to remember the events of last night.

But now . . .now as he walked toward her. Washed and shaved and not looking as tired, as yesterday with a single white rose in his hand, she felt her stomach knot. Yesterday he had been handsome, but now he just looked painstakingly gorgeous.

He was her husband, she didn’t know him. But, she was extremely attracted to him—she knew that much. The way he carried himself the inner power, the poise, she had never ever been so awestruck by anyone. Well, at least she didn’t think she had.

“Liz,” he smiled and sat down besides her, handing her the rose.

Liz slowly took the rose from his hand, smiling shyly in response.

The nurse, whose name was Jill gave Liz a look and pulled the cup away from her mouth, putting it on the bedside table, knowing that there was even less chance to get her to drink the medicine now.

Liz’s heart instantly quickened as Max’s hands clasped over her smaller ones. “How are you feeling Liz?”

“I’m okay?” she answered, unsure of what else to say. “The doctor let me know about everything this morning—he told me . . .I have temporary amnesia and I should regain my memory slowly, it’s a shock thing” she took a well earned breath and looked into her husbands amber eyes, feeling slightly lost.

“I’m glad” he smiled reassuringly, “I hope they’re all treating you well” he raised his eyebrows at the nurse. Giving Liz the impression that the two were well acquainted. Well, she wasn’t really surprised—from what she’d heard, the hospital had more then less been Max’s home, since she had arrived.

“Great, though everyone seems to be quite taken by you here” she blurted, referring to Jill. Who hadn’t stopped talking about him since the time she had woken early this morning till right now. Though it wasn’t hard to understand why.

Jill shook her head “She’s fine Max, Liz was given a thorough checkup this morning, everything is most fortunately working well apart from a few bumps and bruises” Jill looked between the couple, “ . . .and maybe you can get her to take some of her medication” she pointed to the cup she had put down on the table, “She kicked up a fuss about taking the injections and now she won’t even take the medicine substitute, maybe you can persuade her into it”

“Liz,” Max said in a mock angered voice, “You know its good for you"

Liz pulled a face, “I guess . . .though it looks horrible”

Max peered at the brown liquid and pulled it off the table top beside her—glad that it wasn’t him taking the stuff. “Okay, just drink it really quickly”

Liz nodded her head and leant toward the cup and Max held it to her mouth. Just before it touched her lips, she pulled back. “I’d prefer pills”

“Liz!” Max repeated in a stern tone. Sighing she leant forward and took a quick gulp of the liquid, swallowing it as fast as she could.

Smiling to herself Jill left them alone in the room to gain some privacy. She was sure they could do with some at trying time like this.

“There it wasn’t that bad was it?” Max put the cup back down on the counter beside her bed.

Liz swallowed again, trying to ride herself of the after taste, “no. . . I don’t think it was, but I don’t really have much to compare it too”

“I’m sure you'll have a whole list to compare it to, by the time you’re out of this hospital”

Liz bit her bottom lip and intertwined her hands together. Hospital. This was somewhere she wanted to get out of as soon as could be. She wanted to remember so much and being surrounded by beeping monitors and stark white walls wasn’t ideal. What about her friends? Her family? Where were they? How old was she? She didn’t feel old . . .how long had they been married for? God, there were so many questions that needed answering.



Max’s almost golden eyes searched her over. Thinking how beautiful she looked, she looked like she was glowing after a long rest. No one would have though that a few weeks ago, she had almost been dead. “The doctor said you’d remember soon, just try and relax”

Liz turned to him and nodded her head. It was almost as if he had read her mind. “Am I that predictable?”

“Predictable isn’t really a word I’d use to describe you Liz”

Liz blushed slightly, wondering if his words contained double meaning. All the moments and memories that she and her husband had shared . . .everything was gone. It struck her as rather scary and this husband of hers, he must have known her so intimately, yet she had no idea about him.

“Max . . .” the name rolled off her tongue easily and she said it trying to get acquainted to it.

Max nodded his head, encouragingly. “Yes, Max”

“Max,” she repeated. “There’s so much I don’t know. I need to know—the accident, how did it happen?”

Max’ expression darkened. “Liz, you were driving, the car slipped you had an accident” he replied shortly.

“It just slipped?”

Max gazed at Liz, before nodding his head. “It was a . . . faulty brake” he didn’t want her to get worried about the accident being her fault or as a matter of fact— the baby, either, right now. She was under enough pressure as it was.

“Oh . . .” she said slowly, “I was beginning to think it was my fault—somehow”

“No” Max shook his head, watching disillusion cloud Liz’s face, “I was at the airport and luckily I tried to call you before I boarded the plane. It was answered by our housekeeper who explained what had happened” He shook his head as if trying to shake the tremulous memories away “It was the longest flight of my life” he sighed and looked into her eyes. “It wasn’t your fault”

Liz studied his face and nodded her head. “ So . . .I was out for three weeks?”

“Three weeks”

She had lost three whole weeks of her life. They had just disappeared into oblivion—wow, this was strange. “Where’s everyone else?” she said slowly. “Mum, Dad, your parents?” Maybe they were all waiting for her at home.

“Like myself you have a father and they are both on a world cruise, at the moment it’s pretty hard to contact them, but if you want me too . . .”

“No” Liz shook her head, “No . . .I don’t want them to worry, let them enjoy them selves—I’m okay now”

“Okay” Max replied in response, watching her carefully.

Liz looked around the room feeling a little disorientated and a little uncomfortable. Then she remembered something that had been on her mind. “Max, do we have any . . .do we have any children?” she was curious. What if she had children? What if she had five? How on Earth was she going to be able to survive without remembering anything?

Max looked down at the bed before slowly shaking his head. When he looked back up something about his expression made Liz’s insides shiver. “We’ve only been married for five months”

“Oh,” she breathed a sigh of relief “five months—that’s not long”

“No”

Liz smiled slightly, wondering if she had, had a dream wedding . . . Maybe they had flown off for a romantic weekend in the Caribbean in Jamaica, maybe they had some spur of the moment thing in Las Vegas, maybe they had, had a massive church wedding in London after a whirlwind romance. So many possibilities clouded her mind. “How . . .how did we meet Max?”

Max leant forward and stroked the hair at her temple, “Everything will be answered later Liz. Right now you need to relax. I don’t want you getting more ill, by forcing yourself to remember, the doctor said that’s something you should avoid”

“But—“ Liz began to protest; She wasn’t sure how she was going to survive if she didn’t know everything. She wanted to remember!

“Liz,” Max raised his eyebrows, closing the conversation.

“You're pushy” she raised her eyebrows in return, beginning to figure out the noticeable trademarks of her husband.

He was successful she could tell, caring—very much so, according to Jill, who claimed that the hospital had become Max’s home and the nurses his family, and he was also little overbearing. But when it came round to it, she was sure could learn to love him.

“You're stubborn” he grinned, mimicking her impression. “And not just that either”

Liz unsuccessfully tried to hide the smile that was beginning to form. “This is strange”

Max couldn’t help but nod in response, “It is Liz, but it’ll get better, it has too . . .” he gently squeezed the hand of hers that he was still holding and was surprised at her response.

Feeling brave, Liz leant forward and brushed her lips against his, taking in the smell of bath gel and aftershave as she did so. He was Max. He was her husband. Butterflies cascaded through her stomach as she pulled away. Even though she had probably done this a thousand times before, it felt like the first time. She shrugged off, her silliness and forced herself to look back up at his darkened eyes. “I want to go home”

It took Max a while to respond, “Home? Is everything okay?”

“Everything’s fine, it’s a great hospital. If that’s what your asking, but . . .I just want to go home”

Max cleared his throat, licking his lips slightly, “Liz, it might be better if you stay a little while longer” he wanted her home too, but there was a lot that needed to be sorted out, and he wanted her to get better as quick as possible even if that meant her being in hospital little longer.

“No” Liz shook her head adamantly, and repeated for the third time, “I want to go home Max” There was nothing that would make her want to stay here one moment longer. “I feel trapped, three weeks is long enough—I want out” her eyes pleaded with his, “Please

Max sighed a gave her a resilient nod, “Home it is”

*****


They stopped in front of the large gates and Liz took in a deep intake of breath. She had definitely assumed that Max was a well off guy, but now . . .now this was something she hadn’t expected.

Max groaned inwardly as he pulled up outside the house, where a row of keen press people stood with their tripods and cameras. He saw Liz shrink back in her seat, looking surprised “Its okay Liz” He said softly, “just ignore the idiots”

Liz watched Max roll his eyes as two of them inched closer to the car, flashing the camera in her face. She took a deep breath. Trying to take it in, this was her lifestyle? Was she a famous movie star? Or maybe it was Max . . .maybe her husband was a star— Yes that must be it. He did have the looks for it too.

Feeling overwhelmed she took a sideward glance at her husband. He seemed used to it. There was no element of surprise on his face part from slight agitation. “Liz,” he looked at her, “Do you think you’ll be able to make it to the front door? —I’ll get the wheel chair out as soon as we’re rid of them” the doctor finally given in and made a compromise, advising Liz to use a wheelchair until further notice, after she had refused outright in staying any longer. She had known Max wasn’t keen on the idea on her coming home so soon, but she had made-up her mind and here they were.

She looked at the small distance from the front door to the car and nodded her head. The pathway wasn’t too long. It seemed easy enough.

“Good” Max opened the car door and was greeted by an instant array of flashes. He wanted to knock out the whole lot of them. Why hadn’t he thought of this before? He should have taken precautions. Liz didn’t need this now.

Another flash made him blink. He put is hand in front of his face, shielding himself. What was wrong with these people?

“Max!” Someone yelled, knowing not to respond he quickly opened the door to Liz’s side, and held out his hand to help her out of the car, the same trying to shield her from the flashes going off.

Liz grabbed his hand, using her feet to properly stand up and on her own two feet for the first time in three weeks. In the hospital, they had taken her everywhere in the wheel chair and this felt a little strange.

“Mrs Evans—“someone yelled out, “Its been heard that you can’t remember a thing” Liz gulped, her eyes travelling to the man that had spoken.

Max protectively stood in front of her, then moved to her side, placing his arm around her waist and guiding her. He supported her nearer and nearer to the front door, motioning for her to not say anything.

Liz leant onto her husband for support, trying to strengthen her jelly like legs and trying to ignore the chaos going on all around her. She matched her pace with his, until she felt a small jolt in her spine and her legs trembled making her trip. Max immediately caught her and helped her stand up straight again. She cringed, knowing that this would most likely be on the newspaper tomorrow.

“Mrs. Evans, is it true that you were speeding when the accident happened?”

Liz felt the back of her neck redden. Speeding? Max hadn’t said anything about speeding.

Sensing her discomfort. Max bent down and picked her up, cradling her in his arms like a newly wed bride. He saw the front door already opening, ready for them and stepped inside, slamming the door with his leg and leaving the noise behind them.

Max looked down at Liz, as soon as the door closed behind them. “Are you okay?”

“Yeah . . .yeah” Liz looked back up at him, still trying to comprehend what happened. Wow. What the hell had just happened?

“I really didn’t expect that—you just can’t tell when they decide they want to harass you”

“Really Max. I’m okay” Liz reassured him, tightening her arms around his neck.

Max smiled slightly and tore his eyes away from hers to look at someone. Liz followed suit and noticed an older man, who had just opened the door, he was now ushering around and setting up the lounge, propping cushions at one end of the couch.

Max moved forward and put her down on the couch, propping her up on a pillow behind her.

Liz turned to look at the older man with twinkling eyes that had now come to a standstill beside her, feeling that somehow she should know him. He seemed so fatherly and she was at instant ease with him “Welcome back Elizabeth” he spoke softly, “welcome back”


TBC.

Oh Wow. I've actually reached a chapter 15. It feels as if I've been writing this fic forever. I will try and get this fic finished before I go on Vac, which will be during end of Nov. Note- *keyword*-try (hopefully RL won't be an ass and get in the way)*wink*

[ edited 2 time(s), last at 15-Oct-2002 7:16:05 PM ]
posted on 29-Oct-2002 4:46:05 PM by babybunny
1-5-2

Sorry for the wait guys!

Reminder-

Liz turned to look at the older man with twinkling eyes that had now come to a standstill beside her, feeling that somehow she should know him. He seemed so fatherly and she was at instant ease with him “Welcome back Elizabeth” he spoke softly, “welcome back”


Marriage of Convenience

Part 16



Liz smiled at the older man, but looked at Max with question in her eyes. Who was the man that stood in front of her? She was sure she should know him. It was frustrating not recognising faces that she knew, somehow should be familiar.

Max smiled encouragingly, “Liz—this is Arthur—Arthur is our housekeeper”

“Oh hi,” Liz greeted him, “Nice to meet you,” she responded formally, the way that she felt she should.

The older mans eyes seemed to twinkle further and Liz immediately liked him. When he spoke, he spoke gently as if talking to someone young. “What can I get you Liz? Anything to drink?”

Liz began to shake her head, but the realised that she could do with a drink. She had been too preoccupied with everything else to notice how thirsty she really was. “An orange juice please”

“Anything I can get you Max?”

Max shook his head, “No Thank you Arthur”

“One orange juice coming right up” The older man disappeared into the kitchen.


Liz felt a firm hand on her shoulder, she turned around and Max was holding out the remote to her, “here watch some TV,” he gave her that awesome smile, which did wonders to calm down the nervousness that had begun to form since they had been serenaded by photographers. “It might help you catch up on what’s been happening in the world over the last three weeks”

Liz picked up the remote and turned on the TV, half expecting her own face be glaring back at her. Instantly a row of brightly dressed, fat, overgrown toys started jumping around on the screen, singing oddly and clapping their hands together. Liz was looked at the screen stricken, yet curious—what the hell were they doing?


Max did a double take at the scene playing on his screen, Arthur had been baby-sitting his granddaughter and he must have left the video running. “Teletubbies” he groaned. He despised them. Four, brightly dressed aliens— what nonsense. Even children weren’t that stupid. When he had children, Teletubbies definitely wasn’t on his list of things to show them. Shaking his head, he picked up the remote from the side of the couch to change the channel.

“Stop!” Liz yelled, intrigued.

Max chuckled, “I wouldn’t say Teletubbies is the most educational on current affairs—“

Liz looked up at him before rolling her eyes playfully, “Well, I like them”

Max made his way to the couch and sat down on the opposite end, pulling her legs onto his lap. He shrugged his shoulders, “Whatever floats your boat Liz”

Liz felt herself tingle all over when he began massaging the soles of her feet. She bought her eyes to meet his. “So what did I normally watch?”

Max looked up from her feet. “Oh, the Teletubbies was always a favourite of yours”

Liz raised her feet and bought them back down on his lap hard. “HA, HA, Max”

“Watch it!” Max winced when her feet barely missed his manhood.

“Watch what?” Liz asked innocently.

Max coughed, motioning to his lap, toward his family jewels. Liz was acting a little dangerous.

Liz ignored him, sliding her feet slowly up his lap, watching his expression change when she bought them higher. Smirking to herself she bought them past his thighs and wiggled them between his legs.

“Liz,” Max hissed, when her feet came into contact with the very sensitive part of his anatomy.

“What?” she asked even more innocently, pretending that nothing was happening, she changed the channel, before moving her leg around in a circular motion at his groin. After all he was her husband, there was nothing wrong in a little teasing. Plus his reaction wasn't one to miss.

Max’s eyes widened, surprised at her forwardness. “What are you doing Liz?” he whispered desperately. He groaned when he felt his body suddenly respond. She wasn’t being rough, but gentle—playful, and his body was reacting. Boy his body was reacting strongly.

“I’m watching—the Teletubbies”. She wasn’t even looking at him, and he was glad, because right now little Jr was straining to be seen.

“One Orange juice”

Liz instantly moved her feet away from where they were. She looked up at Arthur wide eyed who was standing over her holding a glass of Orange juice. “Thank you” she gave Arthur a sweet smile. Maybe she’d work on groping her husband later.

Max let out a whoosh of air and grabbed a cushion placing it over his arousal and Liz’s feet at the same time. Wow. What kind of drugs had they been feeding her back at the hospital? Man . . . she was horny. He was a bit surprised, but he liked it.

Horny Liz meant—horny Max, horny Max meant …actually horny Max meant nothing. He was always damn horny around her.

He was glad when Arthur looked like he hadn’t noticed what was going on. He was beaming happily down at Liz as if he had seen something most amazing and when he walked he had a certain jump in his step. He was in doubt over the moon that Liz had arrived, back home.

“Sit down Arthur” Max motioned to the stool beside him. The poor old man adored her. He hadn’t revealed anything, but the last three weeks had been torture on him . . .He had walked around zombie like, hardly stringing two sentences together—and that really said something. Usually it was a challenge enough to get a word in edgewise once he had started.

Arthur peered out of the window, before gladly taking the stool. “I think we’re rid of them for now” he muttered, “They’ve been sitting outside since early this morning, I tell you, what nuisances- I nearly bashed one on the head with my watering can” he snorted.

“Why—are they here?” Liz wondered her thoughts out loud. “Max what do you do? Are we famous?…” she wasn’t sure if she liked the idea of that or not.

“Hardly” Max shrugged, still working on trying to calm his raging body down. “I let my father bask in the limelight—but they like to stalk me from time to time, might be because I’m better looking”

Liz smiled and shook her head, itching to wriggle her feet and tease him more. Even though Max had a firm grip of the cushion on his lap holding her feet down.

“Or it could be because I have a gorgeous . . .housekeeper” Max winked at Arthur, showing off his perfect set of white teeth.

Liz giggled. “My dibs are on the second option” she chimed in.

“Flattery isn’t going to do you any good” Arthur grumbled, unable to hide the red in his face. “Young people these days”

“He won’t listen to me—no matter how much I reason with him” Max explained to Liz, “he just won’t stay here—even though it'd be much easier“

"Why not?" Though Liz guessed it was more to do with pride then anything else.

“No” Arthur shook his head; “No Max—I’m fine in my cottage . . .I couldn’t live with you Max—so don’t ask me again” he turned to Liz, changing the subject “And you my dear—did I tell you how beautiful you look—absolutely stunning”

“Easy on . . .” Max cleared his throat, half talking to Liz, who had now decided to begin rubbing her foot up and down his thigh.

“Thank you—“ Liz rolled her eyes at Max, shaking her head ruefully, then leaning forward to touch Arthur’s wrinkled hand. “I guess our attraction is mutual”

She tried to stop laughter bubbling over when she saw Max shift in his seat look between the two of them, then jump a little when her foot wriggled its way down between his legs once again.

“If there’s any difficulty at all—or if you need me at anytime,” Arthur pulled out a pager from his pocket and fumbled with slightly, ‘Look what Max bought me” he chuckled. “Even though I have no idea how to use it”

”Its never too late” Max retorted, grabbing Liz’s legs, over the cushion with both his hands, to stop her wriggling her feet. “Even for you Arthur” he gritted his teeth and glared at Liz who in turn gave him a playful smile.

“Hmm, --that’s what they said when I tried using the Internet” Arthur puckered his eyebrows together, “Today’s technology disgusts me” he grumbled, “You go to search for nuts and bolts and it comes up with a whole different list of things”

Liz noticed the secret smile on Max’s face and when she looked at him questioningly, he mouthed something that resembled. “I’ll tell you later”

Maybe she didn’t need to know about Arthur’s experiences on the web. Especially if he had gone searching for nuts and bolts.

Arthur was in talking mode, and that was just what he did. Soon dusk had shadowed the night sky and certain serenity washed over the three in the living room. Arthur soon excused himself because he had to go home and cook. Max was reluctant to believe this and said that he was really running off to meet up with his secret mistress, to which Arthur had replied with a grumble. By this time Liz was in love with the old geezer.

“He’s wonderful” Liz said, when the door closed behind Arthur.

“He’s the best Liz, I always opt for best” Max pulled the cushion off his lap and Liz giggled remembering back to the expression on Max's face earlier.


"Looks like its just me and you now" Max observed.

All of a sudden Liz felt shy. "Yeah . . ." she nevously looked down at her hands. It had just taken that sentence for her to become aware. She had kissed him, god, she had even foot groped him . . .but this was the first time she had been utterly alone with him. All of a sudden it occurred to her how he was virtually a stranger.

Max watched her reaction. He just watched her; in fact he could just sit here and watch—that was until he saw her yawn and he realised how tired she must be. Her day had been hectic; she should have been in bed ages ago. In fact, he wasn’t far from exhausted himself. “Come on,” He carefully shifted her legs from his lap.

“Where are we going?” Liz looked at him innocently and Max noticed she looked a little apprehensive.

“Don’t worry Liz . . .I’m not about to take you hostage in the bathroom to have wild animal sex with you—unless you want me to of course” he gave her a charming smile, “An early night wouldn’t harm either of us”

“Oh . . .”Liz shuffled off the couch, trying not to meet his eyes. Because then he’d see how much she actually wanted to have wild animal sex with him right now.

“Here let me help you” he placed his arms around her waist as she began to get up.

“No Max, I’m okay” she stood up wobbling a little, but she soon regained full control of her legs, so she shuffled his arm off of her. “I want to do this by myself” she wanted to show him that she was capable. She wanted to feel capable.

“Liz . . .” Max tried to put his arm back around her when she began wobbling again.

“Its okay” she tried to regain her footing, “Look I’m standing” she said stubbornly, she took hold of his hand and gently pushed back once more, “Look. Standing. See?”

Max furrowed his eyebrows and crossed his arms over his chest sceptically,” I see” He was pretty used to her stubborn ways now. "I can tell some things haven't changed"

In answer she pulled out her tongue at him and grinned triumphantly, walking past him. Max walked just inches behind her, making sure that’s he was safe and he was there to protect her if she did fall. “Liz…” he began cautiously, “You don’t have to prove anything to me, you know”

“I’m not,” she answered simply, walking as confidently as she could carry off. Placing one foot after the other. Knowing that Max was right behind her. Yes. Liz, she mumbled to herself, just a few more steps . . .just one more step . . .

She reached the bottom of the staircase and her body fluctuated with tiredness, she closed her eyes, feeling exhausted from the effort of walking from the couch to the staircase.

Max’s arms were instantly around her waist, he held her and nuzzled her hair. “That was great”

“Thanks” She sighed, wrapping her own arms around his feeling safe and comforted. “ Max . . ."

"Hmm?"

"You can carry me now”

“You sure about that my lady?” Max teased, “You sure your not going to change your mind—or decide you want me to private jet you up there or maybe usher you in a horse and carriage?”

“Max—just carry me,” Liz groaned, leaning against his strong chest fully, for support.

“Answering at your beck and call”

Liz twirled around so she was standing face to face, her face only millimetres apart from his. She playfully nuzzled her nose against his, glad that his strong arms were still wrapped around her.

“I sure am glad that I’ve woken up to find a husband who knows how to treat a girl”

“You are?”

“Well...” Liz placed her hands against his chest, “he definitely knows that he should do as he’s told—and quite rightly too, I may add”

“I’m learning” Max replied sarcastically. He bought her body flush to his using his arms to pull her closer. “Though might need lessons in a thing or two”


“Oh yeah?” she retorted playfully. She tilted her head to the side, “This doesn’t feel real Max—its like I’ve woken from this coma and entered some perfect place” she gazed up into her husbands brilliant amber eyes. He moved one of his hands to her face and she rested the side of her face against it—trembling as his fingers rested against her cheek. “And its strange—not because I’ve lost my memory, but because I just feel this isn’t how its meant to be—its just too . . .right”

Max smiled at her, but then looked away, breaking eye contact. At that moment he never wanted to tell her the truth. It wasn’t all perfect and it wasn’t all right . . .but h could make it be. He’d do anything to protect her. “You deserve the best Liz,” he was going to keep this perfect as long as he could.

He gently brushed his lips against her forehead and in turn Liz placed her arms around his neck. Max reached for her hips and hauled her up as she straddled his waist. He began climbing the stairs, both arms holding her to him.

Liz bought her head up from his shoulder and watched as he carried up the staircase, a little line of concentration creasing across his forehead. A cheeky smile appeared in her lips as she watched the way his lids drooped, his lashes making shadows against his cheeks. She was still amazed that he was her husband. He was hers! She wanted to trace the contours of the shape of his eyebrows. She wanted to relish her fingers through the softness of his hair and his lips . . .she wanted to—

Before she knew it she was lying on the bed. Her hair sprayed out beneath her and Max resting on top. She wanted to move forward just that little inch so that she could enclose the space between them. God, she was so attracted to him, it was unbelievable.


Liz looked up at him and he felt he could drown in the depth of those chocolate eyes wanted to swoop down and ravish her. She was so close and he had every opportunity in the world to do just that . . .if he wanted.

“What are you thinking?” he asked softly.

Liz felt herself redden. “Nothing,” she replied too quickly. Was he reading her mind again? Did he know that she was thinking about having wild animal sex with him?

She thought she saw Max’s face flicker with something like a smile, before he jumped off of her. No, no, no, no. Max! Her mind yelled. She wanted him back on top of her right now! When he made no attempt to come back, she sat up and watched him pace toward a door to her right, opening it.

“This is the bathroom,” Max tried not to look at her. Or for that matter the way she was looking at him. Control was becoming more and more important every passing moment.

“Okay—“ she began climbing off the bed, trying to ignore the gentle throbbing in her body that protested for him to come back.

Max was beside her instantly, holding her and leading her into the bathroom, he explained where everything was whilst all Liz could do was think about having wild, animal, sex with him. When he left her, she sighed to herself and wondered around trying to find where everything was because she had been thinking about doing things to him, when she should have been listening to him.

At the same time she had to shrug off the strange feeling that had been becoming stronger at the pit of her stomach. Her relationship with Max felt right, but so . . .undiscovered at the same time. There was certain newness about it, almost as if they were strangers meeting again. She knew that concept was ridiculous . . .her and Max knew each other inside out. Right?

Shaking off the uneasiness, she walked past the glass cabinet and then walked back again, fully taking in the reflection that she had, had so little time to see.

In it stared a brunette, shiny-eyed girl. Not painstakingly gorgeous, but she wasn’t that bad either. Perhaps she’d look better without that extremely noticeable bruising on her upper forehead. As she looked at it, it seemed to throb more, so she turned away continuing the search for toothpaste.

Where had he said it was again?

After she had washed and brushed her teeth, she walked back into her bedroom to see a nightie laid out for her, smiling to herself she slipped on the garment. Climbing into bed, she wondered where Max was. She waited a little while. Perhaps he was using another bathroom.

There were so many questions that needed answering she wasn’t sure where she would start. She pulled the covers up higher, then pushed them down again, impatiently waiting for her husband to arrive. But soon she the intensity of the day hit her hard, her eyes grew heavy, and she could feel sleep coming to claim her. Maybe the questions could be answered later . . .

TBC.

Thankyou again, for the awsome FB*wink*

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 29-Oct-2002 5:12:58 PM ]
posted on 2-Nov-2002 12:56:01 PM by babybunny
1-5-2

Thought I'd drop this off.*wink* Do I get a cookie for posting so soon?

Marriage of Convenience

Part 17



Liz sat up in bed and rubbed the sleep out of her eyes. Her eyes adjusted and her gaze shifted around the room, resting on the space beside her. There was no one there. Max had already slept and got up and she hadn't stirred. She had slept like a log; she must have been really tired.

Fumbling out of bed, she placed her feet on the carpeted floor and slowly stood up, becoming more confident at standing on her own. Deciding she needed a shower. She looked around the room, wondering where she’d be most likely to keep the towels. Spotting a cabinet, she walked toward it and opened it. Bingo. She pulled out a pink a towel and began making her way to the bathroom, slowly but surely, taking one step at a time. Closing the bathroom door, she made her way over to the shower, putting the towel on the holder; she stripped, throwing her nightie to the floor.

Standing in front of the mirror, she glanced at the bruise. It sat prominently and proudly on the left of her forehead. Her eyes moved away from her face and she looked down at herself, her eyes scanning as her hands slid down past her breasts and stomach. Her body.

She put one hand on the edge of the bath using it for support before putting her leg over it and standing up, using het arms for balance. It took effort, but she was proud of herself, she had done it—without the help of Max too.

After showering, she wrapped the towel around body her way back into the bedroom she made her way into the nearest wardrobe and pulled it open.

Dresses, lots of them.

She thumbed through the vast array of colours and pulled out a pretty chiffon one, holding it in front of her, she gazed at herself in the full-length mirror, and then tilted her head. It was kinda large . . .had she been fat? Shaking her head, she threw the dress to the floor and began thumbing through others, to her surprise a lot of them, were . . . large. It was strange . . . why were the dresses all so big? Surely she would have thrown them away if she had lost weight….

“Liz” she twirled around, still holding onto a smaller black dress that she had pulled out of the cupboard.

Max was standing in front of her. Her eyes landed on him, everything she was thinking flew right out of the window. He was looking immaculately polished in suit and tie, standing against the doorframe, hands in pockets, head cocked to the side.

“I see you’re awake”

“Yes” she smiled, “I was just about to get changed…” she nodded to the dress she was holding

Max’s eyes took in her small frame, the towel wrapped around her body and then at the black dress that she was holding. He pulled his hand out of his pockets and ran it through his gelled hair, “I really would have liked to spend today with you . . .but work calls. Apparently my associate ” he said the word with a emphasis behind it and Liz wondered what the story was, “can’t seem to handle things alone—I’ll try and get back soon, if I can”

“Oh okay” Liz couldn’t hide the disappointment in her tone; it was just that she didn’t really know anyone apart from Max and she had been hoping to get to know him a little more today.

“Arthur’s here” Max added, “And if your feeling bored you can always give Anthony and Petra a call”

Liz nodded her head, “Its fine Max, if you have to go you have to go…” she shrugged her shoulders then playfully added. “I might be able to forgive you if you come home quick”

Max was looking at her apologetically and Liz gave him a pleasant smile. “Its okay Max! really, go”.

“Okay” he moved forward and Liz leant up for a goodbye kiss, but instead he just stroked the hair at her forehead, before moving away. “See you tonight Liz”

“Bye . . .”Liz’s felt like her heart was lurking in her stomach and her hand fled to the bruise on her forehead, touching it slightly as she watched Max walk out.

*****

Max walked into the office and put his briefcase on the desk. He sighed and ran his hand through his hair as he began thumbing through the papers on his desk. There was no way, he was going to be able to get all of this finished early…unless he could get Tess to take over. But he doubted that, they were hardly in speaking terms since their so called incident in Thailand and Liz’s accident had only made the situation more strained the very few times he had been able to come to work, during her coma.

“Hey, there,”

He turned around to see Stuart, his assistant peering around the open door. “Hello Stuart” he nodded at him.

Stuart headed toward him, taking that as a signal to come in. Closing the door behind him and jogged up. His lanky legs flagging behind him, like he was walking too fast for them. “How’s Liz?” he put down a few files on Max’s desk before making himself at home on the small, leather couch beside the window.

“She’s better” Max smiled, “A lot better”

“Good, that’s great, I’m really glad about that”

Max raised an eyebrow, eyes fixed on the memo he had picked off his desk. “Me too— I filled out form 1D and 34R so they can be sent off”

“Okay—I’ll do that right way” Stuart leant over into his briefcase and pulled out a laptop, beginning to click away. He knew that when Max was in business mode, there was little time for conversation. He guessed he wanted to be home with his wife as quick as he could. He didn’t blame the poor guy.

Max turned the page and scanned it. “The meeting with Lava Corps. Why didn’t that take place?”

Stuart didn’t seem to hear him. He continued tapping stealthily into the laptop.

“Stuart?”

Stuart sighed and closed his laptop. “Max, there’s been a lot going on since you haven’t been here”

Max peered at him. “What does that mean?”

Stuart paused finding it hard to find the right words. “Well lets just say, Tess hasn’t been herself since . . .well everything happened with Liz. Everything’s . . .. Just spiralled out of control.”

Max raised his eyebrows, “what’s wrong with her?”

“She’s been crying”

Max shook his head. “Crying?” Tess never cried.

“Yes” Stuart answered. “Its like she’s been broken, she hasn’t been acting herself . . .attending meetings. It’s been hectic trying to get everything together”

Max scratched the back of his neck, unsure of what to say. This was very uncharacteristic of Tess. She never let things get out of control, in fact she was
the organiser while he was more the doer in their partnership . . .and crying? Well that sounded ridiculous. “Someone should talk to her” he commented logically.

“Yes” Stuart coughed, “That’s where we were hoping you would come in”

Max met Stuart’s hopeful eyes and groaned.

****


Liz walked into the bedroom she had been standing outside of. She had decided to take a tour of the house after eating a delicious breakfast cooked by Arthur. Max had taken the wheel chair out of the car and left it on the dining room for her, but she had decided she wasn’t going to use it. Walking was exercise for her weak legs.

The first thing she noticed was the desk, she assumed that maybe Max used it for work. But then she noticed a neat pile of clothes by the bed. The clothes Max had been wearing yesterday. Her eyebrows furrowed in thought. Why were Max’s clothes here? Maybe he liked to sleep in the study . . .maybe he had slept in the study yesterday…. that would explain him not coming to bed. But why? Did she have a snoring habit or something? She walked further inside and scanned the room once more before sitting down on the single bed.

******

“Tess?” Max knocked three times on the door. It was awkward. Usually he’d barge straight in. Their offices were right next to each other and the doors were usually open so it was easy access for them to walk from one to the other. If a client were to come in through the reception, they could easily walk through Tess’s office and right into his. But now it would probably be different.

She was standing at the window, back to him. She twirled around as soon as she heard his voice. “Max!” she almost ran to him, “How are you?”

“I’m . . .okay” Max nodded his head, then noticed how tired she looked. He had agreed to Stuarts request, he probably was the best person to talk to her, but all of a sudden he was unsure of how to bring anything up. “Listen Tess—“

“How’s Liz? Have they bought her home yet?”

“Liz is, uh, okay” Max found it awkward talking about her, “She came home yesterday” he walked in further toward her until he was level with her desk.

“I see,”

He swallowed, “Tess, there’s been a few issues that have been discussed about you, and me and as your partner—I feel it is my duty . . .to talk to you—so we can keep everything running smoothly” ”

Tess just looked at him without saying anything.

“Now I realise that there are problems, we should work on sorting them out before they get out of hand . . .if you need time off---“

“Oh cut it out” Tess cut him off, shaking her head.

“What?”

“This. You talking to me like I’m some kind of stranger. I know you clearly don’t want to be here and I don’t blame you, it’s all because I majorly screwed up” she was shaking her head with disappointment at herself. “I screwed up—our relationship our friendship . . .” she was pacing around the room, lost.

“Tess . . .I” Max wasn’t sure what to say to her. He was never good at this kind of thing. Yes, she had messed up. But he didn’t think that would be a plausible thing to say to her right now.

“Yes,” she sniffed and continued without hearing him out, “I would say sorry but I realise I don’t deserve any type of forgiveness because of the bitch I’ve been”

Max cleared his throat. “Tess all I wanted to say was—anything’s that been bothering you can be sorted out”

Her bright blue eyes flared. “ Don’t you get it Maxwell? It’s this. This is what’s bothering me!” her eyes teared up and Max watched her helplessly. “Me, I regret that way I’ve been Max…the way I’ve acted!”

“Oh . . .”

“I’m so sorry” tears started streaming down her face.

Max shifted uncomfortably. What she had done was undeniably wrong, but should he just throw so many years friendship down the drain? “Don’t cry Tess—I’m sure we can sort something out”

“Really?” before Max knew it her arms were around him. “Thank you Max. Thank you!”

Max stood still, one arm draped awkwardly around her shoulder.

*****

Liz flipped through the pages of Vogue for what seemed the hundredth time, she had found an old copy lying around and she had read it from back to front so many times she couldn’t recall. Max had called earlier and said he was going to be late, but it was nearly 10 pm and he still hadn’t arrived.

Her head jerked up from the glossy pages, when she heard the turn of the lock in the front door. Max walked, briskly into the living room throwing his briefcase on the couch beside her. He glanced at her and had to do a double take to look at her again. Almost as if he hadn’t expected her to be here.

“Hey,” she smiled shyly at him.

“Hi,” Max smiled in return, rubbing at his eyes.

Liz’s smile never left her face as she glanced at the clock behind and then back at him. “You tired?”

He nodded his head; “A little” Today hadn’t really been what he had been expecting. Tess had definitely been slacking, even though she had happily insisted that she’d finish off all the work that she had failed to complete, he couldn’t leave her to do the mountains alone. So the supposedly early day had become and after hours job between him and Tess. It had been a little awkward at first but soon enough it was almost like old times . . .almost.

Liz stood up, “We should go eat,” she said, proud that she hadn't wobbled.

“Eat?” he had forgotten about food. “Oh yeah” he looked at his watch. “You haven’t eaten yet?” It was late—he thought that she would have eaten by now.

Liz shook her head. “I had to send Arthur off home because he kept insisting I eat . . .but I wanted to wait for you”

Max gazed at her. “You didn’t have to wait for me” he smiled, touched. "Give me five minutes Liz, I’ll be changed in no time”

They sat in the dining room sitting at opposite ends of the table. Liz kept glancing up at Max, who was shovelling his food down at enormous speed. She wondered what was wrong with him. He wasn’t saying much, she got the impression that something was stressing him out. Maybe it was work. Yes, she could tell he worked too much.

After supper had finished Liz made her way back into the lounge whilst Max placed the dishes into the dishwasher.

Max walked into the lounge to see Liz sitting on the couch, he walked over to the bar and poured himself a drink’ “Liz do you want anything?”

Liz shook her head. She noticed how tired he looked. His eyes were dark and his shoulders were hunched tensely. “Max comes here”

Max walked over the couch and sat beside her taking a sip of his drink before placing it on the floor beside the couch. “Hmm?” he turned to face her fully, taking in her appearance properly since the first time he had arrived home. His eyes scanned the bruise on her head, those shiny eyes, those soft serene lips, before dropping lower to those perky breasts and that petite figure and moving up again. As usual she looked perfect.

Liz blushed as her husband checked her out. “Move closer Max”

Max raised his eyebrows, but didn’t say anything to question her before moving across until his thigh was touching hers. “What is it Liz?” It felt like he was a schoolboy and she some schoolgirl who wanted to whisper some secret into his ear.

“Let me help you relax” she smiled. Liz placed her arms over his shoulders, giving them a gentle squeeze. She realised that her husband was tired and she wanted to be the best wife she could. “Hard day at work?” she tilted her head, her hair falling onto her face.

He nodded his head slightly. “I’ll be okay, after a rest” he knew he should be moving away. Her soft breath on his neck was sending waves of need racking through his body. It was crazy being this close to her and knowing that he couldn’t do anything. He couldn’t deceive her by going any further . . .could he? Was it even deception?

Liz knelt up on the couch and positioned herself behind him, still holding on his shoulders, she began rubbing them using her thumbs and fingers before slowly moving down to massage his shoulder blades. “Your so tense . . .can you try and relax your shoulders for me?” her voice was smooth and calming and as if hypnotised, his shoulders fluctuated.

His shoulders slumped as Liz continued to massage his back. She placed her hands over his shirts, using technique of hard and soft strokes to caress him.

“ Max…I get the feeling you over work yourself”, leaning forward to whisper in his ear as she ran her hand over his spine and up again.

Max's back automatically straightened. He wasn’t sure if he could really call it a massage, but it felt nice . . .“No—just a lot that needed . . .sorting out”. He wasn’t going to details about Tess. Tess was...confusing.

“Is it all sorted?” Liz ran her fingers up and down the muscles off his back again and again purposefully. . Man, he had a lovely back and an even lovelier ass judging from the view back here. For emphasis, she ran her hand down his spine and then over the small of his butt before running them up again. She tried to suppress the giggle, when his shoulders tensed again.“Max” she rolled her eyes, “I said relax"

“I am relaxed!” he groaned.

She began smoothing his fingers over his flesh in seductive circular motions. “You know . . .I could do this much better with you shirt off”

Time seemed to still whilst Max comprehended her comment. Yes, she’d being able to manage better—but would he be able to take her fingers brushing his naked skin without jumping on her? “Are you—sure?” he croaked.

“Yes…” she rolled her eyes “Massage usually works better without a shirt” her hands were tingling to touch his flesh and if he didn’t take his shirt off, she was going to do it for him.

Max began unbuttoning his shirt. “Then I have to do as my lady says” he pulled it open and unwrapped the shirt off his lithe body.

“Let me take that” Liz grabbed it from his hands and threw it over the couch behind them.

Max turned to look behind her questioningly, but she had placed his hands on the smooth skin of his bare shoulders and was pushing him down. “Lie,” demanded against his neck.

She couldn’t see the front part of his chest, but his back was enough to make her heart pittar patter in her chest. She watched his taut, tanned flesh ripple as he obeyed her command passively.

Soon enough Max was lying on the couch, Liz clambered on to his legs and slid onto him, moving up his body until she was sitting on his behind. Max had to stop himself crying out, when she crushed his forming hardness onto the couch.

“Okay . . .now” she leant down, over him. Her cool fingers began working magic on his back. “That feel good?”

“Uh, yeah” That felt amazing. She was leaving scorch marks on his flesh, his skin was tingling in reminisce of every touch. He was feeling uncomfortable lying like this. He was crushed on the couch whilst Liz sat on him intimately, breathing down his neck, caressing his naked back… He wriggled slightly, resisting the urge to flip her over and crush himself into her.

“What about this?” Liz shifted and began doing something else to him. Max gritted his teeth together as she leant over him seductively, “Does this feel good Max? ---Tell me how it feels good”


Oh god! How it felt good? He’d show her how it felt good, in a second. His breath caught in his throat as her thumbs touched underneath the waistband of his boxers. Did she even realise what she was doing to him?

"Max?" she questioned innocently.

“That… feels… good,” he breathed.

“Good” Max winced as she bounced on top of him and then she began her seductive assault on his back once again.

“How . . .how did you learn to do that” his voice came out in a hoarse whisper. He had never been relaxed and turned on at the same time, some kind of magic was pouring from her fingertips. Engulfing him.

There was silence, before she replied. “I don’t know…”

Of course . . .

“I missed you today” Liz talked as she slid her fingers to the small of his back. “I was just lurking around the house and walked into your study—do you sleep there often?”

“Sometimes” he offered his feeble explanation, he was so into whatever she was doing wards were hard to form. She was stroking his skin in soft subconscious strokes, rubbing it in seductive longing . . .

“I found this” Liz sat up straight and took one of her hands off his back sliding into the pocket of her dress, she pulled out a chaffed brown wallet and leant over his shoulders, waving it in front of his face.

Max opened his eyes and his head jerked. In an instant he was moving and Liz had to move fast to stop herself from falling off of him. He grabbed the brown wallet from her ’s hands, before she could say or do anything to respond. “Where did you find that?” he bit.

Liz recognised the instant change in mood as he grabbed the wallet from her. “In your room, it as in the towel drawer. I thought you might have misplaced it or something…” her voice trailed off.

Max was shaking his head. He was shaking his head in disapproval . . .had she made him angry?

“There’s some pictures in it. I thought you might want to tell me who they were,” she continued, she moved closer beside him and leant forward to take the wallet, to show him which ones she meant. Max jerked his hand back harshly.

‘Max?” Liz looked at him surprised. What was wrong with him?

Max shook his head again as if trying to internally reason with himself. On second thought he opened the wallet and tipped it upside down without looking at her. A vast array of pictures fell out. Not saying a word, he picked up a particular one. A black and white one with an extremely striking dark haired lady, holding two young boys.

He seemed to be lost in thought before he spoke. “My mother”

“No its not" Liz looked at him confused. His face was unapparent of any emotion, yet she could sense certain sadness in his voice. . "Petra’s your mother..."

Max shook his head slowly. “Petra isn’t my mother nor is Anthony my father, don’t you remember when I told you that my dad had gone on a cruise?

“Yes” Liz’s eyes lit up. She remembered him telling her that.

“My father is William Evans” He was staring at the picture he was holding in his hands.

.“I don’t understand though—if this is your mother and your father is with mine, then why do you call Petra and Anthony your mother and father?"

All of a sudden Max looked tired. “It’s a long story Liz” he began collecting his photos and stuffed them in his wallet, attempting to finish the conversation.

Liz watched him fumble with the pictures with a strained expression on his face.

“I want to know Max” She had noticed that Max had a tendency to do that. To change a half finished topic whenever he felt like it and expect her to follow suit. “'I'm a little confused” she watched him pick at the wallet and turn away from her. She placed her hand over his. “I know the doctor said that my memory shouldn’t be forced. But there’s some things that will confuse me even more if I don’t get the answers—there’s some things that I need to know—do you understand that?”

“This isn’t one of them” he addressed her slightly, before putting his hand on her arm. “Come on let me help you upstairs”

“No” Liz pulled her arm away from his, “You can’t keep me in the dark” she moved her head, trying to make him look at her.

“It’s not about keeping anyone in the dark” he stood up, looking magnificent, bare-chested.

Liz averted her eyes from his powerful chest, “ Then what exactly is this about Max? Can you please explain?” She didn’t understand this anymore…why couldn’t he just tell her?

“Liz” he sighed, “I’ll tell you--I promise, you just have to trust me okay?” he knelt down and bought his hands to the side of her face, rubbing at her cheek gently. He looked into her eyes intensely, deeply willing her to understand.

Liz looked up at his strained face. A face that held so much inside. She stood up, moving her head so that his hands dropped to his sides. “Fine, okay” she sighed frustrated, “fine” She knew this was one argument she wasn’t going to win.

Max nodded his head and put his arm around her. “Lets just go to bed okay?”


Liz looked at him and didn’t have the heart to decline him or push him away when he looked up at her with those beautifully, pleading eyes. She fell onto his chest, tilting her head to keep eye contact with him. "Only under one condition"

Max stopped, "What’s that?"

"You should go around shirtless more often"

Max looked down at her and gave her a smile . . .that thanked her for understanding. Not many people did.


[ edited 2 time(s), last at 2-Nov-2002 2:02:08 PM ]
posted on 18-Nov-2002 3:40:29 PM by babybunny

A/N

Hey guys.

I know its been two weeks. Thats why I wanted to pop in and say hi and that I'm going to try and post the new part soon. As to how soon, I dont't know yet. Along with a lot of hecticness I have the bug thats been going around. These things have perfect timing-- right before I go on vac! Hopefully I'll be feeling better *fingers crossed* and be able to dish out a new part before I go.
posted on 4-Feb-2003 5:09:02 PM by babybunny
A/N

Yes guys, I am back!! Sorry for taking so long, just that my vacation ended up being longer then expected, I got a wonderful case of the mumps, RL got in the way (humph) etc.

I am actually working on the new chapter, so hold on to your seats, I'll be back soon.*wink*
posted on 8-Feb-2003 10:42:41 AM by babybunny
*waves* Its been ages hasn't it? Well I'm back now and don't think I'm planning on going anywhere till I've finish this. Thanks for keeping this bumped and yes, I am feeling better now *big*

1-5-2


Marriage of Convenience

Part 18

Max walked toward the bathroom, eyes half closed, hands stretched out in front, trying to feel his way in the dark. He groaned when his thigh hit his solid dresser and had the greatest urge to kick it bare footed. Even though he had been sleeping in this room for over 5 months he still wasn’t used to the feeling his way in the dark. He often felt that this wasn’t where he was meant to be; he should be in the room on the other side of the adjoining bathroom, with his wife, with Liz.

In fact he was pretty sure, he could go in there right now and she would welcome him with open arms, but as usual, just like the many urges over the last week, he couldn’t just walk in there and do what he wanted. His morals wouldn’t let him. It hadn’t been easy. Resisting the temptation that she kept offering him was one of the hardest things that he had ever done.

After emptying his bladder, he pulled up his boxers and turned to walk back into his room. The corner of his eye caught light being emitted from Liz’s room, curiosity got the better of him and his hand was on the doorknob. Slightly pulling the door ajar, he poked his head around.

She was sitting on the large bed. The small lamp on the bedside illuminating her face. Her eyes were closed and her petite legs hung over the edge of the bed. She sat straight up, arms clasped in her lap. Squinting slightly Max made his way inside.

Sensing that he was here, she opened her eyes,“Hi”

“Liz” Max walked in farther wondering what she was doing, “Its almost 2.am” he pointed out trying to stifle a yawn.

“I know” she replied blankly.

“Aren’t you tired?”

“No” she stared at the wall behind him, unflinching.

Ut oh. Max was sensing danger here. There was something wrong. It was the way she was looking at that wall… “Look Liz—the doctor said—“

Liz sighed, “Please Max, don’t rant at me about what the doctor said”

“I only rant because it’s what matters—you need to sleep”

“Max” she cut him off sighing “Not now. Not like I haven’t heard ‘what the doctor said’ lecture over a hundred times- there’s a lot more that I need then what the doctor recommended”

Max cleared his throat, “Is something wrong?” he could hear the clock on the opposite wall ticking like deep bass in his ears drums, when she didn’t reply.

“Liz?” Max inched closer.

The last week had been good. In fact it had been great—he just hoped that it wouldn’t end up like it had been before she lost her memory. “Liz?” Max continued to gaze at the down turned face of his wife when she refused to answer. Sensing that she didn’t want to be pushed, he asked, “Do you want me to stay?” Maybe she needed to be alone.

Liz nodded her head and then shook it looking down at her hands. She bit her bottom lip, which was quivering slightly. When she finally spoke her voice was strained. “What is it Max? Am I unattractive? Is it the way I look?” her hand reached for the bruise on her head, scanning it with her fingers.

“No-No Liz, why do you say that?” he took in the way she was self consciously brushing her hand over her swollen bruise. Words couldn’t describe how much beauty she radiated, why would she think she was anything but beautiful?

“Is there- is there someone else?” her voice came out in a mere croak.

“No” he shook his head vigorously.

“Do you feel sorry for me?” she asked, her voice raising an octave. “Is that why you’re still with me?”

“Of course not!” Max stalked toward her, until he was standing above her.

Liz looked up at him with sad, brown eyes. “Then explain Max—why do I feel like you don’t want me?”

Max sighed. Unwanted? He wanted her so much that it was like a searing pain all through his body, in his heart, every time he was near her. He wanted to touch her, feel her, taste her, but reasoning controlled him. He couldn’t do anything until she knew the truth and then chances were, she wouldn't want to be with him. But there was no way he could take advantage of her before she knew the full story.

She scanned his face, waiting for his answer wide eyed. Her innocent, pure eyes assaulting him with unspoken questions.

“You are beautiful Liz, god I couldn’t describe how much . . .” he sighed and knelt down in front of her letting his fingers rest on her cheek.

“No” she shook her head, “You pull away, you don’t even look at me, god—you even sneak away to another bed when you think I’m asleep! Just tell me Max, I can take it, I just want the truth” tears stung the back of her eyes. Max was perfect—but she had sensed that everything was too perfect. Too right. Every time she got close, he pulled away and maybe the reason for that was that he didn’t find her attractive. Maybe he was waiting for her to get better before he told her there was someone else in his life.

“So?” she repeated, unable to cover the tremor in her voice.


Max groaned inwardly, “There’s never been a day since we’ve met that I haven’t wanted you” he placed her hand over hers and bought it down from the bruise on her head, trailing his fingers down her face at the same time, “Your eyes” his fingers trailed past the corner of her lids, “Your lips” his fingers passed them with gentle caress “And even that brilliant purple thing on your head is beautiful

Liz tried to sniff back the tears that angered the back of her eyelids, “You’re lying” she stated shaking her head. She wasn’t that beautiful.

“Do you really think I’m lying Liz?” He moved to sit on the bed next to her, never taking his eyes off her.

Liz trembled and not because she was feeling cold. She leant toward him, her head pressed against the bare skin of his chest, his heart thrumming like a peaceful song in her ear.

“I saw it” he continued, “I felt that inner beauty the first time I saw you” He smiled to himself, “Even if you constantly wore a paper bag over your head—I’d still feel it”

“What?”

“You” Max looked down at her, not glimmer of ingenuity in his face. The yellow freckles in his eyes drawing her in and Liz felt her eyes water with the intensity of his words.

“I’m scared Max”


“This whole thing. You. Me our relationship, everything. That I might never remember my life. Who I am.” She sat back and searched his amber eyes as if some secret answer might be hidden in their depths. “Who am I Max?”

“Your Liz” he answered softly.

“Its just a name”

“No its not” He wanted her to understand, how important she was, “Elizabeth” he took her face into his hands “how do you want me to show you how much—how much you mean?”

The room silenced as they both sat, facing one another, Max still holding her face only centimetres apart from his own, hoping to somehow wipe that lost look away.

Then she spoke. The obvious answer, the one that had been silently unspoken for so long and he knew it was coming even before she said it . . .It was written all over her face, full of longing and full of desire.

“Then show me”

The silence continued. She had just asked Max to show her. She didn’t want to be told that he loved her, she wanted to be shown, she wanted to feel the depths of his love.

Max opened his mouth and closed it again. Well…he hadn't expected for her to be so frank about it.

Liz licked her lips, her heart rate quickening in expectation, “Do you want me Max?” she looked at him huskily, the question asked in her innocent voice, but full of unsettled seduction.

Max raised his eyes to look at the ceiling, thinking what a stupid question that was. His body responded to her every touch. Every one of his senses mingled with hers. He had never felt this way about anyone and yet, she was asking if he wanted her. Only he knew how many times every day and night his friend in his boxers, down below had reached out for her. It was countless . . . .and tiring.

He nodded his head in answer to her question, his mouth had become somewhat dry.

A small smile appeared on Liz’s mouth and she closed her eyes in longing, “Max” she whispered his name in a soft moan, enough to make his awakening body spring to life immediately. His mind owned the self-control but there was no stopping his body.

The feeling of lack of control gnawed at him, but he was unable to tear his eyes away from her beautiful form. How could he say no? How could he deny the thing that they both wanted so much? . . .But still his conscience nagged at him. It wouldn't be right . . .Not until she knew the truth. .. they couldn’t . . .

”Liz” he began quietly.

Was she even ready to know right now? How would she react? Would it push her frail strength to the limits? He didn’t want to jeopardise her health even more.

“Max” she whispered again, trailing her hands down his face, she moved forward. It was automatic, his own body responded in exactly the same way and their lips met in a soft butterfly kiss that lingered for a few seconds. They both sat, unmoving, mouths hardly touching, listening to each others breathing in anticipation.

Liz sighed, this was what she had been longing for, it felt so right.

To be just like this.

She pressed her small hand on the side of his face, bringing him forward to harden their kiss.

Max responded fervently, clasping his mouth onto hers, teeth grating against hers, tongues swathing in rhythm. His hands slid up into her hair, pulling her closer. Part of him not believing what was happening, but all sense was thrown out of the window when her lips became intimate with his.


Then somehow, at some point she shifted position and climbed on top of him. Her legs straddled around his lean body, pressing hard against him. She continued kissing him, touching him, her small hands pressed all over his back, his chest, her touches coursing through his veins like mini jolts of electric.

Soft, light, kisses being spent all over his neck, his jaw line, his face. She stopped her display to look at him for a second, eyes full of deepened desire. Her eyes trailed over his face, his lean neck where his adams apple bobbed, his smooth, tanned chest , the dark nipples standing erect, then down to where their bodies met. “You are beautiful” she sighed, trailing her cool finger down his warm, chest, circling his nipple.

“Hey, I think that’s my line” he quipped and was cut off when her mouth took his into hard unchained joining, once again.

Whoa Max sure he couldn’t stop her, even if he wanted to. She had gone wild, her breaths washing over him, her mouth clinging to him, her awakening nipples rubbing against his, from beneath her nightie.

Jesus.

His hands rested on her lower back and he responded to every tantalising kiss that she led him through. Slow and soft, hard and torturous, teasing, she pulled back, her hungry eyes unwavering from his. Wondering why she had pulled away Max followed her lips, moving forward in anguish. Their lips met for only seconds, before she teasingly pulled away once more. Max groaned and moved forward claiming her mouth into his, to his dismay she pulled away yet again.“Hey!” he moaned, eyes trained on her lips. This kind of teasing was unfair.

She giggled, loving the power she had over him. She could certainly feel his need down there, probing at her between her legs, making her giddy with longing, his body definitely wasn’t being shy about what it wanted and her own was responding to his need. Liquid pooling between her legs.

Flattening her breasts against her husbands chest, Her mouth crashed down on his again, both mouths enveloped in hungry, desperate kiss. “Liz, Liz . . .” Max jumped as she pushed her self forward, jerking his over sensitised cock with her.

“Mmmm” She answered, unable to hear anything but the passion filled cries of her own body and the feel of Max’s hard body against hers. Her own breathing intensified in tune with his as she began rocking against him gently.

Max gritted his teeth together, the pleasure filled pain of her soft femininity, rocking against his hard rod whilst she devoured him. He felt her start on his neck, her lips knawing at his skin, pulling at it in a frenzied state, her hips rocking harder, more needily against him, the back of her throat making wanting noises . . .“Liz” she didn’t realise what a sensitive state he was in right now.

His hands slipped down to her butt to calm her jerky movements, coming into contact with her panties and soft mounds of flesh. Holding on to her, he squeezed her ass slightly.

Liz blindly, broke free from his neck, moaning and arching directly against his manhood once again, causing him to curse.

Self control.

"Oh Max . . ."

He grabbed her cheeks, moulding them in his hands before pressing her against the hotness of his erection.

Self-control was something he had perfected. But now it had disappeared.

She almost mumbled the words in his ear, "Make love to me . . ."

Every single ounce of it.…

There was no way he could deny her. How could he not give her what she wanted? Not when she was asking for it like this. Her voice echoing through his head


Show me

Want me

Make love to me…


She moved back slightly and then her gaze swept over him, the intrusion in his boxers. She wrapped her small hand around his member, grabbing it over the soft silk material, feeling its proud length.

She hadn’t handled him roughly, but it was enough to make him jump,“Oh fu- Liz” in an instant he had flipped her over so that she was pinned to the bed. He held her arms tightly above her, “What are you doing?” he rasped, heart thudding in his chest.

Liz’s eyes widened not sure how to answer such a question, wasn’t it obvious she was trying to seduce him. “I um…” her eyes trailed down his stomach and came to halt on the tent intruding in his boxers. “Well . . .” “I thought . . .” she continued staring down, unable to take her eyes off of him.

“Uh …”

Max swept down and kissed her hard mid sentence. He slipped his tongue into her, exploring the inner depths of her mouth. Liz opened her mouth wider, inviting him in. Tongue with tongue. Playing, caressing, tangling.

They both came away, bursting for air. “Nice” Max grinned, still holding her arms above her head, he lowered himself over her and began sucking at her smooth, creamy neck. God, he had wanted this for so long—there was no way he was going to stop—ever.

Liz wriggled underneath him; “Am I being punished. For something?” she breathed raggedly, referring to the hands pinned above her.

“Only” Max swooped down and kissed her, “for” he pulled up before sweeping down again, ”being . . .so . . .irresistible” Damn, he could eat her if need be.

He heaved on top of her sucking at her throat, then teasing her by leaning forward and to kiss her and then pulling back every time she got into the kiss, just like she had teased him before. “Not . . .fair” she pouted, wriggling underneath his grasp.

“Taste of your own medicine”

“I want my hands back” she writhed a little more, unsuccessfully trying to free her hands.


Max pulled away to teasingly look into her eyes. “No” he stated as he sprayed kisses down her creamy neck, to the top of her nightie, then kissing her pert, protruding nipples through the thin material.


“What!?” Liz mumbled, eyes closed in longing as she took in his essence, “Please” she sobbed.

“I like control”, he breathed in her ear, To show her how much he wanted her—he rubbed his cock gently across the part of her stomach her nightie had ridden up.


Liz was mesmerised as she lay gasping beneath him. He wanted her; it was proven by the rock, hard need hidden in his boxers. He didn’t find her unattractive after all . . .“Max...” she moaned, wriggling under him, his cock rubbing against her abdomen, his mouth playing havoc on her senses. “Please” she moaned as he kissed her collarbone. “Let… me…go”. The need to touch him was unbearable.

When he failed to respond, she wrapped her legs around him, hearing him gasp when she purposely took his cock into the hot centre of her thighs, grinding at him roughly.

His hands freed her, through no intention of his own. It was impossible to not touch her. His hands slid under the smoothness of her nightgown, dragging it further up her body, exploring her braless back frantically.

She wrapped herself around him tighter, shivering as his hands wondered underneath her nightie, pulling at the bare skin of her back. His hands moved back down to the edge of her high riding nightie and pushed it up her body. His eyes following his hands as it rod up her lacy red panties, her small belly button coming into view, her rib cage. . .She raised her arms and arched up, helping him release the garment from her body.

Max was faced with the biggest awakener of his senses. Naked Liz. Breathing hard beneath him, her eyes wide and imploring, her hair wildly tousled, lips red and bruised, her neck tilted and just beneath, two creamy globes of honey coloured nipples heaving hard, begging for him to take them.

Suppressing a groan Max took in the diva lying under him, not believing where this had finally ended up. He had wanted this for so long . . .

How did she manage to look so innocent and seductive at the same time? Just one of the questions that made him so fanatical about her.

Perfect.

“Perfect” he whispered. Scanning his eyes over her again and again hoping to imprint every detail in his memory. An image that’d he’d treasure in his mind forever. From this day forward he was sure he’d never be able to get any work done when he was alone in his office.

"Thank you" Liz blushed, a warm tingling stirring deep in her spine. Her blush deepening with every part of her body that Max’s eyes swept over.

He smiled, still unable to tear his eyes away from her form. This was perfect. Her body had stilled beneath him, watching him look at her. Shivering at the way his eyes worked down to her red panties that were clearly soaked with juices. He licked his lips, the ache in between his own thighs becoming unbearable now that he had seen how much she was wet for him. “Liz” he breathed in question, holding his hand above her breasts, almost believing that her virgin like beauty might vanish if she was touched.

She gazed at him unflinching, with encouraging eyes she nodded her head “Yes Max, touch me” she whispered, “touch me”

He moved his hand down and stroked a hard as rock nipple watching the expression on her face change. Biting her lip in ecstasy she closed her eyes. “Yes”

Circling the dark centre, he caressed his forefinger and thumb over the small, hard, mountain, pulling at it gently.

“Yes, Yes” she arched her back, her heart thrumming wildly, experiencing the joy of being touched like this for the first time with utter amazement. “Oh god Max—please—“ she gasped, legs grasped around him, more and more liquid filling her panties.

Encouraged by her moans, he moved his hand away and lowered himself onto her nipple, taking it into his hot hungry mouth, licking, sucking, softly nipping the erect tip

“Please what?” he mumbled, sucking her, his hand groping for the other breast.

“Please—god just do it Max. Oh god” she pulled his head closer against her breast, writhing beneath his heated body.

“Do what?” he sucked her into his mouth wriggling it around his tongue. “Fu- Make love—“ she gasped, hands pulling crazily at his hair, “I can’t . . .wait . . .any” she reached for his boxers, a hand sliding inside, stroking his hard penis frantically.

Max let out an explosion of hot breath on her right nipple. “I can’t stop—“ he, groaned as her tiny fist began imploring his manhood.

He had come too far . . . It would be next to impossible to stop now.

“I don’t want you to,” she cried as Max nipped down on her round nipple, pulling at gently with his teeth.

He pulled away from her breast; to look at her sweat framed face. “Are you sure Liz?” God, he hoped he was sure—if he didn’t make love to her today he was positive he would internally combust.

All he needed was a coy nod and his desperate hand was thumbing in her panties, he pushed them down past her hips and slid them off her legs. Her want was all there for him to see. Her dark curls covered with overflowing moisture, from her open and ready legs.

In one motion his own boxers were off and he was kneeling between her stiff and proud.

The blood pounded in her ears and everything seemed to pass in slow motion as she watched him, she reached for him again, sitting up to lean against the bed head, tugging at him. Her small fist enveloping his wanting member, as she moved it back and forth repeatedly, knowing that somehow he would like it.

Max’s own face was contorting between pain and pleasure, eyes closed. Calling out her name—moving toward her, his hand slid down between her legs, which she spread instinctively either side of him, letting him slide his fingers inside her.

Max could feel the amour building up inside him. As she continued to pull, back and forth, back and forth, again and again. Leaning into her, he gave her pleasure to match his own, easily sliding his fingers in and out of the wet folds, circling and rubbing the sensitive flesh inside her.

Liz gasped, her hips moving with his fingers, her breathing turning into curses and pleasured moans.

Louder and louder.


Faster.

She needed more, more then his hands. But it was coming. She closed her eyes feeling it build. That moment was about to come, and she knew he was about to too, his moving in her hands speeding up, “Oh my—god---yes, yes, YES”

She almost screamed when he slid his fingers out of her, as well as pulling himself away from her grasp. Liz's eyes opened, "What are . . .you” words fell over each other as she reached for his moisture-covered hand again.

“Liz” he looked at her with unfocused eyes and she thought he had never seen him so beautiful, hair ruffled, primal eyes, chest heaving up and down. “Liz . . .” his voice was almost pleading.

“Huh?” she gasped, not having the ability to make clear sense of what was going on. All she could think was how she ached to have him inside her.

“Say—you want me” he heaved.

He wanted to know that it was him—that she wanted. Not anyone else . . .not Andrew. . .

“Of course I want you Max,” she yelled, not noticing the half tortured expression on his face. “I want you Max” she pulled his shoulders closer “You”

His cock was protruding inside her entrance and unable to wait any longer he buried herself deep inside her, hearing her gasp, he looked at her face and she nodded at him signalling for him to keep going, wrapping her arms around his neck and pulling him to her.

He held onto her thighs as he pushed himself deeper inside her burning core, slamming himself into her again and again. Her ecstatic moans, filling the room, calling out his name repeatedly.

“Max, Yes. YES” she squealed, thrusting herself up at him, harder and harder until she was as connected and close as was physically possible. She squeezed walls together instantly sensing that he liked it. His body thrusted faster and faster into her, finally receiving what they were both longing for.

Max groaned, half seeing her beneath him, her back arched, wet, damp hair, and sweat covered bodies coming together in a unison that seemed so right.

The moment.

This was his. She screamed his name, she yelled his name; she said it in an anticipated sigh as they moved closer and closer to their single destination.

Max. She was calling him.


****

Liz held onto his damp head, feeling his teeth biting onto her shoulder. Breathing hard, gasping for air. It felt as if her lungs were about to explode. “Oh. . my god . .” She breathed out, “That was . . .” she took a deep breath, trying to calm down the pounding in her ears. She could feel the rhythm of a madly thumping heart against her chest, she wasn't even sure if it was her own or Max’s.

“Wow”

Max pulled away from her shoulder and kissed the tip of her sweaty nose, short shallow breaths, escaping him. “Exactly my thoughts”

Liz sighed, “Max that was—“ her exhausted mind failed to help her, as her eyes closed, her body still tingled in reminiscence “Was it always like this?” she murmured quietly opening her eyes to see the amber ones magnified in hers. “I mean between us—was it always this perfect? this . . .sparky?”

Max’s tried to keep a neutral impression as he fell back on the bed, taking him with her. Still buried deep inside her, still connected.

Yes, it had been perfect.

“Sparky . . .definitely” he replied never wanting this moment to end.

“I knew it” a large, heart warming smile appeared on her lips and she wrapped her arms around his moist chest, tighter, kissing his bruised lips, “We are so perfect for each other”

Max's heart squeezed, but he managed a smile, holding onto the warmth of Liz’s post-loved body tightly against him. He pushed all conflicting emotions of what had just happened to back of his mind. He had decided tonight would be devoted to thoughts of loving his wife only.

posted on 15-Feb-2003 6:59:44 PM by babybunny
Aw, guys thank you for such a warm welcome back! I was initially a bit nervous about the last part cause it was my first time at writing nc-17ish scenes. ( though that wasn’t the reason I put it off for so long…really) So I’m glad you liked it!

Okay, a few of you asked if that was the baby making kinda thing…well, you know I CAN”T tell ya ;) You’ll just have to find out.*tongue*

Voula: Thanks for that. That was quite a lot ‘yeahs’. LOL.

P/S Hope everyone had a great valentines day.


1-5-2

Marriage of Convenience

Part 19



“Sky”

“Blue”

“Water”

“Deep”

“Mind”

“Thought”

“Dreams”

“Sex”

“Huh?” Liz turned to face Max, gazing at him from the crook of his neck, “Again? That’s the 10th time you’ve said that in this game” she scrunched her eyes at him suspiciously.

“Yeah—so?” Max mused, trying to look flippant.

“Your meant to say the first thing that comes to mind, so I know what’s going on in that head of yours” she laughed, “How on earth did you get sex from dreams—come on” she playfully hit his chest. “You’re cheating”

“Am not” he denied.

“Are”

“No”

“Well then, obviously I’m lying naked in bed with a sex-o-holic”

Max grinned, not writing off the idea. “I’m not cheating, you delectable moron. If you were a guy you’d know” Max rolled his eyes, nonchalantly, “especially if you were a guy in bed with naked Liz, having just made love to Liz”

Liz elbowed his chest playfully, glancing at him sideways, she grabbed him from under the sheets.

Max hissed, when her hand took hold of his manhood. Brushing her nimble fingers up and down its length. “So what are you thinking about now?” she tilted her head, her eyes mischievous.

“Wow, Liz, you still haven’t had enough?” he winced when she began circling the sensitive head of his cock with her thumb, “4 times last night 4!” his voice coming out in yelp, when she tugged him harder. Even though exhausted, if she didn’t stop her behaviour he was going to jump on her any moment now. He growled, in frustration.

“Oh, that’s very masculine Maxwell really. So caveman” They hadn’t slept at all, and yet she was felt as if she was glowing all over, the after affects of their love making energising body. “Its such a turn on” she added flirtily.

“Liz” he groaned helplessly, “I don’t think I can move another muscle in my body”

Liz raised her eyebrow, “I think there’s a certain muscle that’s pretty alert” she teased, peering beneath the sheets “and anyway its you that couldn’t get enough” She threw the sheets off to show his penis standing proudly in her hands, bits of moisture being emitted from the top.

Max watched her look at him with something like awe on her face, taking him in, getting to know him. It was all a part of the process.

“This is like discovering you all over again” she smiled wistfully. Fisting one hand around him and using the other to lightly fondle his balls.

“Oh Jesus Liz,” he hissed, lying on his elbows, back arching. Her small hands worked like magic, tingles working up and down his body, the familiar sensation of his balls restricting, hit him.

Liz looked at Max, eyes hidden through her lashes, “Are you really that tired?” she gave him a look. That look. She looked down at his proud length and licked her lips hungrily, before giving him the wide eyed ‘Its you who wants to jump me really’ look.


It didn’t take a genius to figure out what she was asking for again. Well . . . she had certainly mastered the skills of seduction and Max couldn't deny how well it worked. Reaching for her, he pressed his lips to hers. His heart jumping in his chest and adrenaline coursing through his veins. “Never tired enough,” he mumbled against the pliant softness of her lips.

Pressing another small kiss against his lips, she freed his cock and climbed on top of him, not once taking her eyes off of his, she squatted in front of him, his length easily sliding into her, until it became fully intimate with her insides, used to the feel of him inside her now. Pressing her hands against his rippling torso, she started from his belly button and pressed small kisses all the way up to the space between his nipples.

Last night had been phenomenal. It had been a night of passion and love and getting to know one another in the most intimate ways. Her body ached, yet some force charged her body to be with his. She felt an enormous urge to keep going. To keep touching him, to become one with him.


Max took her smooth butt in his hands, guiding her as she rode him, hesitantly at first, her small face scanned his body before her eyes met with his twinkling playfully, “You ready for numero 5?”



*****


“OH GOD” Liz thought she may never get the air back in her lungs, “That really happened?” she wiped away the tears from her eyes, shaking her head in disbelief. “A cat?”

Max’s chest heaved in laughter as he reminisced the story of their wedding day. “Yes. It just jumped right in. I was a little shocked, we all were, but you should have seen Majors face. It was a picture”

“That is so disastrous” Liz screeched, wiping the water from her eyes. "The poor cat"

"The poor cat?" Max scrunched his nose in disbelief.

"Yes, it must have been so frightened"

"Yes and what about our poor cake? It messed up our wedding"

Liz began to giggle again and for a moment Max had to stop and take in what he was doing and where he was. All his dreams had just been handed to him on a platter and it was hard for him to believe what was happening right now.

"Part of me is glad I don't remember" she tried to stop the tremors of laughter, coursing through her.

Max chuckled, “Then Maria was walking around the whole day with this bouquet stuck in front of her. Right from the moment she walked into the church Isabel knew there was something up with her dress, only when she slipped and lost the bouquet, did I and the rest of the guests realise she was right”

“That must have been a hard one to live down” she continued randomly chuckling to herself, “And here I thought our wedding day would be one to remember”

“That it was”

“For all the wrong reasons!”

Max raised his eyebrows shaking his head, “No. I remember it as one of the best days of my life. Everythings so vivid.” He smiled in remembrance of the day etched so clearly in his mind, “When you walked down that isle, the whole church silenced and not one person could take their eyes off of you . . .at moment in time it felt as if everything I’d ever wanted was walking right toward me”

Liz bit her lip, blushing slightly, “I bet you didn’t look so bad yourself”

“I didn’t”

She laughed at his self praise, “ Yeah. Well, I’d second that if I could. But right now, I’m gunna have to take your word for it”

He noticed that the statement had an edge of bitterness to it. “You’ll remember Liz, all in good time” he smiled, knowing deep down, that Liz regaining her memories would mean high consequences for him. But that wouldn’t and couldn’t stop him for cherishing what he had right now; even he deserved these few moments of happiness.

He looked away from her and his eyes landed on the wooden clock, hanging above them. “Jeez Liz. I’m getting late for work” he sat up, pushing the sheets off himself.

“Okay, okay, just one more question” She quickly, tugged at his arm, pulling him back down. She was enjoying listening to Max’s memories about their past, it was almost like seeing it all in her head, like a picture, like an- almost memory. Plus she didn’t want him to go just yet. Although they had spent the whole night, talking, making love and sharing tender moments. It wasn’t enough. She didn't think it was ever going to be.

“Yes?”

“Um, How many people were at our wedding?”

“Hmm” his eyes shifted, “ Not many, just close family and friends” Max lay back down and she flanked her arm flat against his chest, propping her chin up on it.

“So if I remember correctly, Major is your father and Isabel your sister. Is that all the family you have?”

“Yes.” Max paused, before he stated, “A sister and a father”

“And your mother? —She’s the woman in that wallet I found right?” she asked curiously.

Max swallowed, having a good feeling as to where this conversation was going. “Right”

Liz wondered why he never mentioned his family much maybe they weren’t that close, “And where is…”

“She’s gone,” he stated, his eyes losing the warmth that had been directed at her just a few moments ago.

“Oh, I’m sorry” she looked down, hoping she hadn’t hit a raw nerve. Not having a memory sucked. Now, if she had a memory she would have known that his mother wasn’t around anymore and it wouldn’t have caused this situation.

“Don’t be Liz, I’m not”

“No its just that I thought—“ Liz had to replay what he had just said. “What?”

“I said, I’m not” he looked at her simply, making no move to give her further explanation.

She was unsure of what to say, “Um, Max. Is there something I should know about her? I mean, something that happened?”


Liz watched his face contort and it hurt to look at him like that. “Max you don’t have to…” It was obviously hard for him to talk about it. She had noticed the way his responses had changed, becoming shorter, harder. For all he knew she may have died just recently in some horrific accident and she didn't want to open wounds that hadn't even healed yet.

“Its okay…” he let his fingers glide down her spine, before resting on her lower back. She looked up at him hesitantly, face propped up on his chest. The morning sun shining through the gaps in the curtains settling in her hair, making it seem like a vibrant mixture of red and brown.” How long have you got?” he sighed.

“As long as you need” She was had no idea that was what was going to be said. But she was sure that whatever was coming, was going to mean something big. Especially to Max.


Max smiled slightly, “Well…” He wasn’t sure where to start, he had never talked to anyone about this and his thoughts of her were all jumbled up in his head. It felt as if there was no logic to his memories any more. He cleared his throat, looking toward the rays of morning sunlight that were making pretty patterns all over the bedroom walls. “My mother ran away with her co-worker, and then I was told she was killed in a car accident”

Liz’s eyes widened, amazed at how detached Max had sounded when he said that.

He wondered if he should bother go through with this excuse for a story that he had played over his head so many times, before making him somewhat obsessed with finding out what had gone wrong and why. But when he looked down at Liz. He knew that she was listening and that she was asking him about his past, even though she hadn’t said it in words.

If he didn’t tell her today, he would break something inside her. He felt he owed it to her. If not about her own past, he owed it to her to explain about his.

“I often felt that my mother was the only one that cared for me. Major only cared about Andrew and I guess he could bare with Isabel because she was so charming and the youngest…but I never understood why he singled me out like he did”, he scratched the side of his neck, a sudden hotness spreading there. “Actually I do know why, Father cared for his first wife more then he ever loved our mother. I guess- I guess you could say he placed his children in categories”

“What?” Liz was horrified, this was making her heart ache and he hadn’t even begun.


“It was the Christmas holidays and mother was meant to collect me from boarding school” he continued, “ I waited and waited and no one turned up. Not even a driver, nothing. I finally caught the train home where I found out that she had left, earlier that day . . .Just left” his face revealed nothing but his voice gave away his feelings when it cracked slightly.

“Go on” Liz encouraged him wide eyed, intrigued, yet appalled at this story he was telling her.

“I was only 8 at the time, Isabel was 4. I didn’t believe that my mother would do something like that to us. Her kids. No good bye, no nothing…. And at Christmas too. I just wouldn’t believe it” his shook his head, as if still not ready to believe it, “All my life I grew up thinking that this had to be wrong. There was something going on. That there was something that the Major had hidden from me. I just wouldn’t believe that she would go like that, I had faith in her and no matter what, I always would have.”

Liz nodded her head, “I’m sure there must have been another reason—I mean she wouldn’t just go” she shrugged her shoulders, hoping he’d tell her she was right.

She was unsure if had even heard her when he continued his story, blankly, staring at the wall opposite. He spoke in an even voice, his face not revealing a flicker of emotion. “Just a few years back, I came across some legal documents and it stated in those perfectly clearly, that she would leave the Manor to the Major granted that he divorce her and take custody of all her children”

Liz gasped, shocked that a mother could do that to her children. Her hand rested against his chest and she rubbed it trying to issue him some comfort. “So your father was speaking the truth all along . . .” Words couldn’t describe what she was feeling right now. Anger, disgust, annoyance and hurt for Max. How could a mother do this to her children?

“Yes.” He smiled bitterly, “Except for one thing”

“What?”

“My mother isn’t dead. She’s alive. She’s out there somewhere and she’s never bothered to contact any of us. Never bothered to pick up the phone to ask us how we were” he rolled his eyes, “Major had just lied so it would be easier to keep his end of the agreement”

“Oh god” Liz kissed the side of his head, “Oh honey” she wrapped her arms around him, sorry that she had bought up this issue at all. There was so much pain, and he was reliving it all. All because she had asked him some stupid question about his past.

“No, I’m over it Liz” Max smiled, even though it was stunted “It was hard when I was young, but I’m over it now.” There was a determined gleam in his eyes, one Liz saw when he trying his hard to achieve something.

Liz wasn’t sure that she believed that he was over it, but she didn’t say anything. “And your life after that—did the Major treat you any better?” she wanted him to tell her how great it had been after her mother had left. That there really hadn’t been too many problems . . .that he had, somehow, someway, gotten over it and resumed a happy life.

Max gave her a wry smile, “Why do you think I’m living in London now Liz?”

Now she understood it all. All those conflicted feelings for his mother. She was the only one that had cared for him, and he was holding on to that. Yet he hated her for what she had done to him. For betraying him, for taking away the only thread of love that he had ever experienced.

“It was all about Andrew” Max went on, feeling as if he was stuck in a time warp unable to get out. “How proud he made him, how proud Isabel was going to make him.”

“Andrew…?” Liz questioned, even though he had mentioned him a few times, Max hadn’t told her who he was.

Max grimaced, “My half brother” his throat burned, when Liz look upward as if catching on that he was someone familiar.

“Why do you hate him so much Max? I mean you didn’t mention him before…its true your father was a jerk, but that wasn’t really Andrew fault”

Max tried not to laugh at the mockery of the whole situation. Someone out there was laughing at him, he was sure. “Andrew” he shook his head, “Where should I start?”

Liz didn’t like where this was going, there was a horrible feeling brewing at the pit of her stomach and she wasn’t sure why. She wanted to hear him out, but part of her didn’t want to spoil all that had happened in the last 12 hours. His past clearly pained him more then she could have imagined.

“Max . . .” Max turned to face her and even though his face was blank, she saw his soul. She saw the hurt and conflict pouring from his eyes. Unable to look full on at his pain, she turned away.

"Andrew had some hidden hate toward me. Anything that I laid my eyes on was destroyed. Including my pregnant girl friend.”

Liz felt herself numb as he continued, his hooded eyes, so different from the emotion that clouded them when he made love to her. “Yes. I got a girl pregnant at 18; we were going to get married. For some reason she ended up in Andrew's car who was drunk at the time causing a major accident. It resulted in killing off both my fiancée and my baby” hurt coursed through his eyes, and he closed them, the memory of that night replaying like a shock through his heart.

He finally opened them, his face calm again. “Just like that, Andrew has always been destroying things I get attached to.”

“Why?” Liz asked, breathing repulsion for the man who could be so heartless, “why would he do something like that?”

“It was always a game for him” Max shrugged his shoulders. “He played it pretty well”

Liz gulped, unsure of what to say part of her wished that she could magic all that hurt away. She hated the way he was in pain. The way he was putting up a façade, pretending that it all meant nothing. “Oh babe” she leant up turning his head so their eyes connected, “God, I want to kill him”

Max snorted. “Might be a it hard, since he’s dead”

Liz’s hand flayed to her mouth. “Oh—oh sorry”

He tried to smile, "You enjoy that installment?” he suddenly quipped, in a fake comic tone, “More coming next time”

Liz silenced, and he turned his face away, emotional pain racking through him.

Liz pulled her arm away so her head was lying directly over his chest, listening to his steady heart, "Max” she whispered, laying her hand against his heart, “I'm angry, awed, shocked at the same time, shocked at the way others have acted in your past, I feel anger toward them, but at the same time I'm in total awe of you . . ."

"I’m total awe of how someone treated so badly could have such a beautiful heart, I don't know what your thinking or even half of what you've experienced, but sometimes . . . sometimes—I think forgiveness is the way to go”

Max blinked, but said nothing. Something in his heart was calling out, but he remained frozen, unflinching.

Liz understood the silence. “I want you to know that I’m here Max. Despite if you’re ready to forgive or not. I care for you. I really do and I’m here.”

Max’s voice lodged in his throat when he spoke this time. The burning in his mind lessening, not only because she didn’t think he was a complete moron, but because if it was possible he was sure he loved her even more. “Thanks Liz, it means a lot but you sound weirdly like the counsellor I had at 18”

“I mean it,” she stated seriously, her arms reaching under his, holding him hard against her, “It’s bad luck that you ended up having the entire jerk kingdom as a family. But now you have me, right?" And she did mean it. He had her and she was never going to let him down, ever. Never break his heart and use every last ounce of strength to stop the past haunting him.

"Right" he answered. He had her. For now.

“I’m your family now. Anthony, Petra . . .”

Max turned back to her, lost for words. He simply stared unable to respond, he was touched.

Liz smiled. “I’m so lucky”

Max leant back, eyebrows furrowed in question. “Lucky?” If anyone was lucky, it was him.

“I’m lucky that I fell for you, not some jerk that was like your father or Andrew. The way you’ve cared for me in the last week has been irreplaceable, and now I realise you were only trying to protect me, when you kept creeping off. But Max, this is so much better. This is what I needed. All along I needed you"

“And I need you Liz” It was hard saying that. But it was true. The first time he had seen her, he had wanted her and needed her with an ache that burnt holes through him. When he had seen her with Andrew his heart had shattered into like a billion pieces. Then there was the acknowledgement that it was happening again. That Andrew had won this time was too much for him to bear. That night in his room, when he had taken them both down to announce that they were getting married, he had hoped that Andrew would somehow deny it…. but no such luck. Andrew was willing to go to the extremes of destroying others lives, just to see him unhappy.


“I hope I haven’t opened too many old wounds.” Liz spoke quietly, the coolness of her hand imprinted against his heart.

Max shook his head, “I’m over it”

Liz looked at him a while, she was sure that no one could ever get over the death of their baby. Sure, the pain would lessen, but you'd never truly be 'over it'. “Max—you delectable moron, are such a bad liar” she chuckled, snuggling closer in to his warmth.


Max swallowed. "Really?"

"Yeah"

Max caught her lips in his own when she looked up at him. "You got me, I lie . . ."

"And you’re bad at it"

"Okay.” He said simply, “So I guess you caught on about earlier"

Liz rolled her eyes, “You make me sick”

“Sex came to mind way more then ten times”

Liz giggled, “I know—same here”


Max pulled her close, his heart lightening,. His fingers weaved through her hair and he’s mind was numbed again with her beauty. The beauty had displayed itself through so many ways today. Her concern for him had surprised him in the best way.

“Hmm, Max” her eyes closed as she relaxed against him “I feel as if there’s so much to learn. Do you have to the office?” her breath caressed his chest when she spoke. She wanted to lie in his arms and hear him talk forever, the past, the good, and the bad. She wanted to hear and understand it all. She wanted to understand the real Max. Sometimes wounds could only heal if there was someone to rub in the balm.

Cold reality hit him, when she mentioned work. For once in his life he didn’t want to bury his face in work. But it was something he couldn’t get away with, especially since he’d taken days off whilst Liz was in hospital. “I have to” he graoned, “and now I’m running late”

“Darn it” Liz moaned, stifling a yawn.

He reluctantly pulled away from her, sitting up in bed. “ I’m going to go shower and you go to sleep” he smiled, “I think all that nocturnal activity is finally catching up with you”

“Never” she sat up after him, watching him climb out off bed and stalk toward the shower in his naked glory. “Hurry Up Max!” she yelled after him, “I’m going to be waiting for you!!”

Smiling to himself, he closed the bathroom door behind him. Maybe he was living in a fantasyland right now. Maybe he had crossed barriers that weren’t meant to be broken. Maybe it was selfish, but he couldn’t deny how right things suddenly felt, it felt as if all the cracks in his life were being covered and everything had suddenly fallen into place.


[ edited 2 time(s), last at 15-Feb-2003 7:36:42 PM ]