Diamond Destiny
M/L w/ some M/M & A/I no tess!!
AU early 1900’s I guess
Rating: PG for now R later
Disclaimer: I don’t own anything, except what is given to Elizabeth
Summary: Liz is born an orphan and adopted by the Parkers. Something is given to her that is very important to shaping her future.
All parts, pro-chap 15, are posted on the repost board if anyone hasn't read the begining yet.

*~* Chapter 12 *~*

“Alex? This is the Alex you guys have been talking about?” Michael exclaimed as realization dawned on him. “Yeah, the one and only. Who did you think was standing there? Or do you just attack anyone who stands too close to you… I bet that’s it.” Michael could tell Maria was still mad. Liz tried her best to help Michael, “It was an honest mistake Maria, plus I bet he has a really good reason as to why he did what he did.” But she had to admit; she too wanted to know his reason. “Well I do have a good reason, I wouldn’t have done it if I didn’t have a good reason.” “Enlighten us, because as I am the one who got beat up, I think I should know,” Alex said the best he could considering his face was starting to hurt already. “Well all I was trying to do was protect you guys.” Maria didn’t even try to stifle her laugh. “Protect us??” * laugh * “From….” *gasp of air* “Alex!!!” * roar of laughter * Maria then fell on the ground laughing while a seemingly annoyed Michael looked on. The truth was Michael wasn’t annoyed. He was so relieved that this Alex person wasn’t anyone bad and he wouldn’t hurt his girls. But no one could tell he was feeling that way, except maybe Liz.
“Alright Maria that’s enough. Michael didn’t know Alex, and he was just trying to protec… look after us I mean.” Maria’s laugher died down only when she heard her mother calling her and Liz. “Ok fine, I’m sorry Michael. Come on Liz, lets go see what mom wants.” “Yeah, we’ll see you guys later.” “Now Michael, don’t do any “protecting” while we’re gone!” Of course Maria just had to make one more comment before she ran to catch up with Liz. “You guys are coming back right?” Alex called, Michael just grumbled. Liz turned and nodded, then continued running. After all that had happened, Alex still didn’t forget why he was here; he needed to talk to Maria and Liz as soon as possible.
Mrs. Parker paced the length of the living room. She had just called the girls in; she had to tell them the news now. As much as she wanted to give them one last day they had to start packing; this was all happening so quickly. She heard their voices as they entered the house. “Well I guess it was kind of sweet of Michael to do, but it was Alex. Alex would never hurt anyone.” Mrs. Parker looked at her two girls. They were standing in front of her, talking as if they had not a care in the world. If only they knew the world they knew was going to be taken away from them so quickly.
“Girls. Will you sit with me please? I have something to talk to both of you about.” Maria smiled, “Sure, what do you want to talk about?” Nancy Parker took a deep breath, as if it would give her the strength she needed to break her daughter’s hearts. “Maria Rose… Elizabeth Vanessa…” Liz and Maria exchanged quick glances, she was using their full names, this couldn’t be good. Liz smiled as best she could and urged her mother on, “Whatever it is mom, we’re listening.” That’s what broke her. The sound of her daughter being her understanding self, when all she was going to receive in return was hurt. Tears began to slowly fall, “Oh my girls! I don’t want you to go! But I don’t know what to do about it!” She turned away from her daughters, as if she was ashamed. Now Maria was really confused, and she was not the type to just stand around while things were happening. “Mom…Mom. You have to tell us what’s bothering you. We can’t help if we have no idea what your talking about.” Gathering her strength, she turned back to Liz and Maria. It was now or never.
Her mother’s fake smile didn’t fool Maria for a second. “Now girls your father… your father… and I, well we decided that it would best for the both of you, if you went away to school. It was always a plan for you two, and now we have enough money so that you can go.”
‘She can’t be serious.’ “But we’ll go away to school next year right? Not this year, its too close to the beginning of the school year.” Liz processed what Maria had just said. “She’s right, isn’t she mom?” “We want you girls to be able to benefit from this school as soon as possible. It’s really a great experience. This is the best school in the country and the sooner you start there the better educated you’ll be. If we could have started you last year we would have but…” “When are we leaving?” Maria raised her voice considerably in the quite living room. “We wanted you girls to start this wonderful…” It was Liz’s quite voice that stopped Nancy Parker once again in mid-sentence. “When are we being sent away?” She didn’t even try to make her voice sound cheerful anymore, “Day after tomorrow.”

*~* Chapter 13 *~*

Numb. That was the only way to describe how she felt the moment her mother had confirmed her worst thoughts, they were leaving very soon. Walking out of the house her legs had no feeling to them. But her stomach was just the opposite; it felt as if a huge pit had gathered there. Even now, outside the immense house, she could hear Maria yelling and crying. Tears wouldn’t come for Liz. She was leaving her home, her parents and her friends, the people she knew loved her. All to go to a place where she knew no one and no one knew her, where she couldn’t be herself. It was her worst nightmare coming true. All her life she had hid who she really was from everyone so that she could stay here. It seemed her efforts were in vain, now she was being sent away nonetheless.
Alex saw Liz coming towards him just after he heard Maria’s angered ranting getting louder as she too exited the house. Liz silently headed for the garden maze while Maria walked towards the woods mumbling to herself. Michael exchanged a look with Alex and each boy took off in separate directions to go speak to separate girls. Both having no clue what was going on, but willing to do anything to help their friends. Alex thought he knew what was going on, but he wasn’t sure. Well there was only one way to find out.
“Maria! Maria!” Michael’s calls just made her run faster. Finally both children were running at the same pace. Michael glanced over a Maria and saw that she was crying, but didn’t show any indication that she was going to slow down anytime soon. So Michael handled the situation the only way he knew how, and it was exactly what Maria needed.
He sped up to pass Maria; this caused her to strive to meet Michael’s pace. Maria ran faster than she had ever ran in her eleven years, and it was freeing. This feeling that running with Michael was giving her, this feeling that she wasn’t alone and out of control, it was just what she desired at the moment. She stopped crying and gave Michael a run for his money. Soon, they both collapsed in the grass spent. After catching their breaths, Michael broke the silence. “So, what’s the matter?” He never was a man to beat around the bush. “I don’t want to talk about it.” Maria turned and faced away from Michael. “I know that feeling. I hate talking about what’s bothering me. But if it will help any I promise not to tell anyone, or laugh at you or anything like that. I know we didn’t get off on the right foot, but I don’t want you to hate me. You can trust me.” That little speech even amazed Michael, Maria was blown away. She didn’t know Michael could even say more than two words at a time, let alone all that. It was enough to make her turn back around. This was all new to Maria, besides Alex and her sister, she never told people her true feelings.
Alex walked after Liz, deciding to catch up with her before he started talking to her. With the long strides his substantial height allowed; it didn’t take long for him to get within arms length of her. But the second his fingertips brushed her shoulder, Liz sprinted away. She was heading towards the garden that her bedroom window overlooked. Alex would catch her if it was the last thing he did.
Bounding over bushes, and dodging statues; Alex ran as fast as he could towards Liz’s garden. Alex’s efforts were in vain, for when he reached the garden the only thing that greeted him was silence. He frantically looked around, ‘I was sure this was where she was heading. Where could she be?’ A faint cry from the other side of the garden promptly grabbed his attention as if it were a thunderous scream. He followed the crying until it lead him to the side of the garden that was right across was Liz’s balcony. “Liz?” he called. As he turned the corner he found her.
Liz didn’t even realize Alex had been following her until he grabbed her shoulder. She didn’t want to be the one to have to tell him that she was leaving him, so she ran as fast as she could. Her destination was unknown at first, she then found herself at the same spot she danced with Max. ‘I’ll never be able to see him again. I’ll never be able to see anyone again.’ With that last thought she collapsed on the floor, tears running down her face and her breaths coming in tortured gasps. It was like that that Alex found her.
Seeing Liz crumbled like that, it was as if someone had punched him in the stomach, hard. He knelt down beside her and easily lifter her small body into his lap. Liz clung to him as if her life depended on it and continued to cry. Alex did all he could to try to calm her down, with soothing words in her ears and small kisses on her hair. After a little while Liz finally started to calm down. Now only having occasional bursts of tears and hiccup. Sniffling, she finally looked up at Alex. He smiled the best smile he could muster, “Want to tell me what’s wrong now?”



*~* Chapter 14 *~*

Liz took another breath as she finished relaying this morning’s sad events to Alex. “We’re being sent away day after tomorrow. I’ll never get to see you or… or…. anyone anymore…” Tears once again followed a path down Liz’s face, pooling in a space between her check and Alex’s chest. As he listened to his best friend pour her heart out, Alex too struggled with something. Neither Liz or Maria knew it, but he did have a real reason for coming to speak to them this morning. At the time it seemed like such a big deal, but now, it didn’t really matter.
Looking up finally, Liz stared at Alex. “Aren’t you going to say something?” “Liz, do you remember how I came to see you and Maria this morning, earlier than I usually do?” “Yeah, I guess, why?” Alex took a deep breath, “well I had something to tell you guys, something important.” Liz sat up and wiped the remaining tears out of her eyes. “What is it? You can tell me.” Alex looked Liz right in the eye, “your not the only one going away.”
Michael felt his stomach lurch once again as Maria explained that she and Liz were being sent away to some school. “And my parents didn’t even tell us! I’m almost twelve years old I think I should have some say in where I live! How dare they do this to me!” Michael looked up at the canopy of trees towering above them. Anything not to have to look at Maria, to see how she acted angry, but he knew better. He could tell, how she really felt, hurt; it was written all over her face. Risking a glance in Maria’s direction, he saw she had her head down. “What? The grass isn’t that interesting.” He waited for a reply, when none came he turned to face her. It was then that he noticed she had started to cry. This was the hardest for Michael, he hated when girls cried, and he always felt like it was somehow his fault. “Why are you crying? Tough Maria doesn’t cry, she gets angry… and then gets her way.” Maria smiled despite herself. “I am angry.” “Then why are crying?” “I can handle this Michael.” Michael’s perplexed look prompted Maria to explain what she had meant. “I can handle this, but Liz can’t. It will be so hard for her, what with her being so shy and self-critical. And how am I supposed to be there for her all the time, I’m the only one she has?”
Before he what was happening words started pouring out of Michael, words that he always thought but never dared to say out loud. “When I used to live with my dad, he would get drunk sometimes. He would hit me, not mean it of course; he didn’t know what he was doing. Now living with my aunt, I’m alone all the time. I’ve felt so bad; I would do anything so that no one else would have to feel the way I felt. I feel like I have to make sure everyone has a perfect life, so they can be happy the way I haven’t been. But you know what? No ones life is perfect. No matter how much you want to shield Liz from life, it’s not going to work. She’s going to have to learn to fend for herself and deal with what gets thrown her way. She is so lucky to have a sister like you, and together you can help each other. Just don’t feel it’s your responsibility to protect her from everything, its not.”
For Maria, listening to Michael was like having someone list every single one her fears and then make them all better. “You’re right Michael. I guess I just needed to hear it out loud for it to sink in,” she smiled. “I still don’t want to go, but I feel better about it. I don’t know what I would have done with out you.” Although Michael was starting to feel a little uncomfortable with all this emotion, he was extremely happy that Maria wasn’t sad anymore. And oddly enough, he felt even better knowing that he was the reason she was happy. “Well, since your better now, I’m sure you would love to race me back!” With that he darted back towards the house. “Hey you cheater!” Maria started to run back towards the house also, feeling more her old self with every bound she took.

*~* Chapter 15 *~*

Alex’s cryptic comment caused Liz to sit up and compose herself as best she could. “What do you mean, ‘You’re not the only one leaving.’ What’s going on Alex?” “I’ll tell you, but lets go find Maria and Michael first, they should know about it too.” Liz and Alex walked hand in hand towards the house, neither wanting to loose contact with the other.
When Maria caught her first glimpse of Liz and Alex relief flooded over her. Relief that Liz was with Alex, and that she wasn’t crying any more. She ran to her sister, pulling her into an embrace. “I’m sorry I didn’t stay with you, I didn’t mean to leave you alone like that.” Liz took a deep breath and buried her face in Maria’s hair, “That’s ok, I had Alex and I knew you were just as shocked as I was.” The two girls stepped away from each other. Alex took this moment as his cue to start talking. He cleared his throat to get everyone’s attention, and as they turned towards him he suddenly became very nervous. “I… I want, no I need, to tell you all something.” The three friends gave Alex their full attention. Noticing his hesitation, Liz smiled and gave him an encouraging look. Alex smiled back and started. “Well I guess I should just come out and say it. I thought it was a really big deal, but now with what happened to Liz and Maria…” Maria was never the one to be patient, “come on Alex, just tell us, whatever it is.” “Well… I’m moving.”
Mrs. Parker wearily started to move up the stairs, ‘one at a time, I just have to lye down for a minute then my headache will go away.’ After what seemed like an eternity she finally made it up stairs to her bedroom. Sitting on the bed for a few moments she felt better already. Glancing over at her night table, her eyes stopped at a picture there. She hadn’t really looked at it in a while. It was a picture from when the girls were little; she used to love to dress them up in different colors of the same outfit. Maria and Liz were sitting on an oversized swing they have in their garden, each girl holding on to the swing with one hand, and holding their sister’s hand in the other. Maria was grinning widely at the camera; Liz was smiling too and had her head leaning towards Maria’s. Staring at that picture really hit it home for Mrs. Parker. She wasn’t going to be able to see her little girls grow up. Tears started to blur her vision as she heard her bedroom door close. Looking up, she saw her husband. She quickly wiped away her tears, “home for lunch dear?” “Did you tell them?” She didn’t even have to ask what he was referring to, she knew he didn’t want to be around when she told the girls. “Yes, I told them this morning.” “Good, well now that that is over with we can start packing them up and getting them ready,” he went to open the door when his wife’s voice stopped him. “Aren’t you even going to ask how they are? How they took the news? They were heart broken and I’ve decided that I don’t want them to go anywhere.” Turning, he stared at his wife for a moment. “What does it matter what they think? Or what you think for that matter? They’re going and that’s that. I made the decision, you knew about it and they are leaving day after tomorrow.” Mr. Parker turned on his heel and left the room, slamming the door as he went, leaving a dejected Mrs. Parker still sitting on the bed.


*~* Chapter 16 *~*

Liz felt the air rush out of her lungs the second time that day. “Where are you moving to? Somewhere not too far away, right?” “Well, about five hours north actually.” “Five hours away! That is so far.” Maria paused, “when are you moving Alex?” He took a step towards her, “In a few days.” Maria’s eyes widened. “In a few days?! Isn’t moving a big long process? I mean, you have to find a house and then buy it and then pack up your old house and then…” “Yeah, we’ve done all that.” Liz and Maria exchanged glances, both thinking the same thing. Each turning towards Alex they asked what they wanted to know, “how long have you known that you were going to move?” Alex didn’t say anything. Maria was angry now. “You mean you knew about this and didn’t tell us? How could you? I thought we were best friends? We could tell each other anything.” “I didn’t want you guys to feel bad, but look at the bright side, we will be leaving together.” Michael spoke for the first time, “He has a point. You guys are leaving just like he is.” A thought just came to Maria, and it worried her more than she wanted to admit. “Wait, if me and Liz are going away… then what’s going to happen to Michael?” He hadn’t even thought of that. “Well I was only supposed to stay for the summer so I guess I’ll just leave early… go back to aunts.” That was it, the situation finally sunk in for everyone. The four children stood in a circle, all knowing that tomorrow would be the last time they were all together like this; the last time for a long while.

Max woke up much earlier than usual feeling happier than he had in a long time. He wasn’t sure if what happened really happened or if it was all a dream. Either way, he did know one thing. He had never felt the way that happy or free or… whole before. It was like finding his other half. He lay in bed until thinking about it until he heard his sister open his door. “Max? Are you awake?” Isabel didn’t wait for him to answer. She walked over to lie down next to him. Max turned to face her. Ever since their mom had died they got closer, and started spending more time together. They talked every morning before they got up and every night before they went to sleep, it was their time. “I heard you sneaking out last night, you didn’t come back for a while. Where did you go?” “Nowhere in particular, just took a walk around.” “I would have gone with you if you would have told me you were going.” Max smiled, “I know you would have, its ok. I kind of wanted to be alone anyway.”
Isabel hated when her brother was alone, which was most of the time. He was her top priority; she tried to spend as much time with him as she could. She couldn’t explain it, but she felt he was her responsibility. Boys need their mother, and as much as dad tired he would never be able to replace her; that’s where Isabel came in. Even though she was only twelve Isabel was the one to cook a special dinner on birthdays, or decorate the house around the holidays. It was up to her to see that Max had the most happy and normal childhood as he could. “Well did you find anything interesting on your walk? I bet there are cool places to play around the woods here. We could have a great game of hide-and-seek with all the hiding places there are.” “Let’s go get dressed and have breakfast. Then do you want to play hide-and-seek with me?” “Of course I do. I bet I could get ready faster than you could though! Ready? Set? Go!” Both twins hopped out of bed determined to win.
Isabel raced down to hall into the kitchen thinking she had to have won, that was the fastest she had ever gotten ready. To her dismay, there was Max seated at the table. When she entered the kitchen, he smiled and looked as his pretend watch. “What took you so long?” Isabel gave him a dirty look, “very funny. You’re a guy. Guy’s get ready faster than girls do so actually you had an unfair advantage. I should have gotten a head start or something.” “No way. Then it wouldn’t have been fair, its not my fault I’m a boy and you jealous.” Isabel spun around from where she was making breakfast, “jealous? I would never want to be a boy, girls are so much better we…” “Kids, enough!” Mr. Evens walked in just in time to hear his children fighting, he knew it wasn’t anything big, but he had to tell them something so they had to be quite. “Morning dad,” Max and Isabel said in unison. “Ok, lets hurry up and eat. We got a big two days ahead of us.” “What do you mean dad?” “Well, we’re going to leave this morning to go into the city. We will stay today and all day tomorrow. If everything goes right we should be home just after dinnertime.” Max’s heart sank. He was hoping to spend tomorrow exploring, looking to see if his angel really did exist. ‘Oh well,’ he thought, ‘I can just look for her the day after that. It’s not like she’s going anywhere.’

TBC