Title: Reflection
Author: talena
Disclaimers: Roswell and its characters do not belong to me. Let's not go sue happy, ne? I have exactly this much money ::holds up a hand in a circle::
Category: AU M/L; Liz-centric
Genre/Rating:Angst/Drama/Romace - maybe up to R, doubt it would turn NC-17, but who knows?
Summary: A lost soul trying to find its place in the world, can a possible love help it find its way?
Author's Note: Well...see...I am back...however, I am suffering from writer's block, and I'm using this story to try to get myself back into the flow of writing. Therefore that means I only have a general idea about there this story is going, and it may take time to get chapters out. I would appreciate feedback and comments but it's not required.


Prologue


Rays of sunlight emitted from and surrounded the angel creating a halo of innocence around her breathtaking features, favoring her as the sun seemed to follow her with its warm glow as she floated gracefully across the hearth. Long, dark tresses fell down in a waterfall of chocolate, framing an even more lovely face with dainty features and endless doe eyes. She was the picture of perfection, of innocence, of heaven on earth, his saving grace as she moved towards him, captivating him just as she had captivated anyone who had a chance to be in her mere presence.


He longed to hear her voice, soft and soothing. He longed for the caress of gentleness she bestowed upon anyone and everyone she happened across. She was just...perfection. She was the Lady Elizabeth of Earth and his Prince's betrothed. As she neared him, a panic suddenly filled him, why should his Prince's bride waste her breath on him? He was unworthy of her words, of her companionship, being only a mere stable boy.


He deserved none of the such and with that, he scurried away, unaware of the frown that had replaced the smile on Elizabeth's face, and even more so unaware that he had done what most other commoners had done in her presence and that was to run away. He was unaware, and the damage had been done. It was yet another blow to Elizabeth's battered heart, and as she watched the servant scurry, a bitter smile graced her lips as she turned away and walked towards another path. She was oblivious to the look the servant had cast back at her as he finally stopped and looked back at her, only to see her defeated form walking in the opposite direction.


~*~


Elizabeth walked the familiar path, her footsteps seemingly became heavier with each step she took as her heart began to weigh down on her. It was an achingly familiar feeling, and one that was slowly but surely was killing her inside. As always, her mind wandered and she thought about the past year and a half of her seventeen years of living. It had been a hectic year and a half that brought her to where she was now in her life. It was in this year she had been brought to Antar, the home of her betrothed, the handsome Crowned Prince Maxwell of the House of Antar. Albeit her life now was one that was full of serenity and quiet, it had not always been that way. No, she had not always led a life of peace.


Even now this so called peaceful existence was not enough for her raging heart, and although royalty and nobility surrounded her, she still felt that spark of loneliness that had always accompanied her through her dreary existence. She had left Earth in hopes of meeting her intended and easing the ever companionship between herself and solitude with the love of her Prince, but it was not to be as she had never even met him for it was not customary on Antar to meet one's intended until one came of age, and so she spent the past six moons in solitude though surrounded by many "friends", she never found a true companion to confide of her past.


Look at me
You may think you see
Who I really am
But you'll never know me



The falling leaves were the first sign that she was nearing her secret place, her own little garden, her world away from the rest of the world. A place where she allowed herself to breathe freely, for that facade she fronted to slip away, for her heart to grieve. As blossom petals flew around her, a sigh escaped her lips as she submerged in the memories that she thought of when no one was around, for it was not heard of for the Prince's bride to be sad.


It's as if I play a part
Now I see
If I wear a mask
I can fool the world
But I cannot fool my heart



Another expectation she lived up to, even when news of her grandmother's death reached her. She mourned in secret, but in the public's eye, she remained impassive with tinges of sadness. Puffy eyes had been covered with makeup to maintain her perfect beauty. It had been that way since she had been found, since she had recovered her memories and was reunited with her parents and brother in a reunion that was filled with joy on their part, and sadness on hers as she did not know these strangers who were to be her true family.


The sadness she had felt soon worsened as she was brought to Earth and into the public's eyes, named to be the most beautiful woman ever to live, an angel on Earth, and Prince Maxwell's intended. Back then she had unknowingly entered a cruel world, this fact drowning out that of joy she should have felt for finally being free of them. The world she had entered was materialistic and cruel, the people even worse than the harshness she was thrown into. The nobility treated her kindly, their sickeningly sweet sympathies for her there only because of her high status in life.


With the "respect" of the nobility came an even greater respect from the commoners accompanied with a fear to be near her. Everywhere she went in the village she currently resided in, many commoners would go out of their way to stay out of her path, staring at her in awe as if she were some goddess, sputtering and running away if she ever tried to speak or help them. It saddened her, for she could not even find comfort in her future people.


Stopping suddenly, she thought of the irony of the situation. Having once lived their life and having been treated differently by them, she was amazed at their reverence towards her now, but once again it was only because of her status and beauty. And of course, these people were different from the people she had lived with for the majority, but it saddened her to see that materialism was not only important in upper class but also the lower class. Seeing all of this, her heart had hardened even more, and her faith in the world and herself had diminished even more so as her life became mundane and her movements mechanical.


Walking on, she finally reached her destination, a small pond that was surrounded by the fading colors of her beautiful garden. Sitting beneath the tree, she stared down at her reflection in the pond's clear water, and tears welled in her eyes when she saw the tightness of her face, the wariness reflected in her eyes, and the constant frown that would not leave her face. At least when she had been with them, she still had hope, but now the will that had kept her going before seemed to be fading away as she was faced with a face not her own but that of a stranger.


Who is that girl I see
Staring straight back at me?
When will my reflection show
Who I am inside?



~*~


"My lady? My lady it is time to rise. My lady?" A maid knocked tentatively on the door to the Lady Elizabeth's chamber. As the moments passed by, the maid began to mildly panic as her knocks became a bit frantic and louder. "Lady Elizabeth? My Lady it is time to awake."


Once more she received no response and her panicked whispers became louder and louder, drawing the attention of passing guards who stopped in alarm when they saw the maid banging on the Lady's door.


"What is going on here?" One of them demanded as he headed towards her, followed by his fellow guards.


"Lady Elizabeth will not answer! I've been calling her for the past twenty minutes and she has not answered!" The maid wailed hysterically, and the guard took her away, moving her away from the door as one of his comrades began to call out to the Lady.


"Lady Elizabeth? Are you feeling ill milady?" He asked, and when he received no response, he shared a look at his other two comrades, who nodded their head, one of them walking over to aid him while the other calmed the hysterical maid. All thought of what might have happened to Elizabeth for her not to answer them, true concern pouring into them as they thought of the possible scenarios. Had she fallen ill? Perhaps she injured herself and could not make it to the door? Whatever the scenario, they did not expect to find what they did once the doors were thrown open. The sight that greeted them was unpleasant.


The Lady's room remained untouched as was her bed, as if she had never returned to it the day prior, as if she had never slept in the mattress. However that was not what had surprised them, it was the fact that a long mane of hair, tied together with a ribbon lay on the undisturbed bed accompanied with a letter addressed to their Prince. Their hearts plummeted. In Antarian tradition, the longer the length of a female's hair, the higher her status was and the letter could not contain good news. It was immediately delivered to the Prince who lived in the capital city after the discovery of her missing mare from the stable. A search was immediately underway, but no one found any trace of the beautiful angel. It was inevitable that someone would hear of her disappearance, and the news soon spread as everyone learned of this new development.


The Lady Elizabeth had vanished.


~*~


In the Imperial Palace of Antar, only one remained awake, silently contemplating as he gazed at the stars outside his window. Prince Maxwell could not sleep this night as the letter his betrothed had sent him, burned softly next to his heart where it resided in his breast pocket. Taking it out, Maxwell began to read its content once more, a feeling of loss entering his heart. He could almost hear her voice whispering in his mind, and although he had never heard it himself, he had heard enough rumors to believe that she had the voice of an angel.


~*~

My Dearest Prince,


I realize now as I write this letter that I have not done so before and vice versa. I have never heard your voice, seen your face, or experience joy in your presence. It is to a stranger I am engaged, and it is to a stranger that I write this letter.



(Tears fell down pale cheeks as the words flew from her heart to her hand as she wrote fiercely away, confessing her heart to a stranger.)


If you are reading this letter then you have found that I have disappeared. Do not think I am abandoning my duties to my planet or yours my Prince. I wish to justify my departure before you are to form an opinion of it, even if after you read this tale and believe that I am abandoning my duties, then I cannot change that can I my Prince? Please do not take the following as excuses for my absence, merely take them as they are, a story of my heart to yours. I believe that you may not wish to marry after this tale, and I find it fair to share it with you before you make your final decision.


(Breathing deeply, her hand moved across the paper in graceful stroke, the story she hid quietly in her heart burst forth as she confessed to the man who she was to spend eternity with.)


I am now
In a world where I
Have to hide my heart
And what I believe in



As you know, I was discovered a year and a half prior by a servant of the Duke Parker of Roswell, my father and my birthplace. Back then I had said that I remembered not my ordeal or what had happened to me, but it was all a lie on my part. How can one forget a decade of tears and pain? What no one knew was while they were searching for me on Earth, I had actually been on your future kingdom my Prince. I was with them. Who is them? That is all part of this story I wish to share with you and as you read this story, I am on a path that will take me to my past, this past that has remained hidden from everyone until now.


But somehow
I will show the world
What's inside my heart
And be loved for who I am



I hope to find myself, a person lost to me since the beginning, and to find those who will endure my pain with me, those who will love without image. I am lost in myself and I find that I will not be able to serve your people or mine as Queen of Antar if I do not know myself. I wish to be worthy for such an honor, and I wish to be worthy of your heart.


Who is that girl I see
Staring straight back at me?
Why is my reflection
Someone I don't know?



(She knew she was drawing out the inevitable by her ramblings, but she could not force herself to return to that past even with the knowledge she was going to physically in just a few short hours. However the inevitable and all things must come to an end, even this letter to her betrothed. So, with a new strength, she began to write fiercely, a tale of revenge, heartache, greed, hope, and her inevitable fall from grace. She wrote it all without flinching and without tears. She was immune to them at this point. At this point she would not weep, for the person in the mirror of her vanity was not her, but someone else, of a person of experience.)


Must I pretend that I'm
Someone else for all time?
When will my reflection show
Who I am inside?



Maxwell read the next section, his heart breaking for his bride's past. It was a past that no one should ever live, and yet his intended, the reputed cold hearted beauty had. He had heard much of her beauty but even more of her haunting eyes and her cold heart. She was immune to emotion they had said, barely even wept for loss of her grandmother. She was ice and her heart would never be melted. He had gotten both sympathy and jealous comments from friends who had merely glimpse her. What they did not see was the sadness that was the cause of the haunting effect of her eyes.


What they did not know was her past. He did, and he felt privileged to be trusted with such a secret. It made him feel closer to the bride he had never known and will not know, it seem for a while. He did not even know if she was still his bride. After all, Antar had been expecting a wedding in just six short moons, her birthday and coming of age. He was unsure, but he hoped with his heart that she would remain his intended for it seemed he had fallen for the writer of the letter that once again lay against his heart.


There's a heart that must be
Free to fly
That burns with a need to know
The reason why



(She was ready save for one thing. She stared at herself in the mirror for long moments, relunctant, yet determined. In her hand a dagger was gripped tightly and in the other hand she held her long silk mane, and closing her eyes, she slashed, and with a whoosh, her long hair was in her hands, what was left now hung past her shoulders in waves of a common woman. Tying the strands together, she lay it upon her bed as a promise of return and swiftly moved to her window, using skills of survival she had learn along the way, she escaped into the night and vanished without a trace nor single look back.)


Why must we all conceal
What we think, how we feel?
Must there be a secret me
I'm forced to hide?
I won't pretend that I'm
Someone else for all time



I only request but one thing from you, although you owe me no favor, I beseech you to not search for me, for the chameleon who wishes not to be found will blend easily into its surrounding. I must do this and I hope you understand. Please do not search for me, please.


Yours Truly,
Elizabeth of the House of Parker


When will my reflection show
Who I am inside?
When will my reflection show ...



The moonlight glowed softly, casting shadows across the soft waters as drops of rain disturbed the surface of the pond, distorting the reflection of a lost soul, standing silently in the night, gathering strength for the rough journey ahead and in the silence, one last single tear fell along with the drops of rain.


Who I am inside?
**Reflection, Chrstina Aguilera**

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So how was my attempt at beating writer's block? Anyone?