posted on 19-Jan-2003 12:46:59 AM by Anniepoo98
1-4-5


Title: Weight of the World
Author: Annie
E-Mail: anniepoo⊕hotmail.com
Summary: The Granolith Keeper challenge from Rachie. Basically, there are a number of mass family murders across the country. However, at the last and most horrific one of all, there is a lone survivor. Serena Ross comes to Roswell under the order of her lawyer, Phillip Evans. The question is where or not the murderers will follow her. Takes place after Off the Menu. The title comes from the song "Changes" by Three Doors Down
Disclaimer: You know I don’t own them. I just have the habit of borrowing them. Trust me, I’ll put them back as they should be!



I'm not supposed to be scared of anything, but I don't know where I am
I wish that I could move but I'm exhausted and nobody understands (how I feel)
I'm trying hard to breathe now but there's no air in my lungs
There's no one here to talk to and the pain inside is making me numb

I try to hold this Under control
They can't help me 'Cause no one knows

Now I'm going through changes, changes
God, I feel so feel so frustrated lately
When I get suffocated, save me
Now I'm going through changes, changes

I'm feeling weak and weary walking through this world alone
Everything you say, every word of it, cuts me to the bone
I've got something to say, but now I've got no where to turn
It feel like I've been buried underneath the weight of the world

I try to hold this Under control
They can't help me 'Cause no one knows

Now I'm going through changes, changes
God, I feel so feel so frustrated lately
When I get suffocated, save me
Now I'm going through changes, changes

I'm running, shaking
Bound and breaking
I hope I make it through all these changes

Now I'm going through changes, changes
God, I feel so frustrated lately
When I get suffocated, save me
Now I'm falling apart, now I feel it

Now I'm going through changes, changes
God, I feel so feel so frustrated lately
When I get suffocated, I hate this
But I'm going through changes, changes

"Changes" by Three Doors Down


Prologue:

"Keep going," her father yelled at her. "Don’t look back."

Death, chaos, and destruction surrounded her. The sound of glass shattering clamored in her ears as she hurdled over strewn chairs. The exit was only a few feet away. We’re going to make it, she thought to herself.

Suddenly, a pair of large arms surrounded her, grasping her so tightly that the air rushed from her lungs in a loud gasp.

"No one escapes," a demanding voice hollered over the commotion. "Find the one with the symbol. She’s the one we need. Kill the rest."

"No," she cried out, yet in the world around her, it was barely an audible whisper. She started to struggle, to fight against the man binding her arms to her sides. "No!"

The more she struggled, the more of her shoulder peeked out from the top of her dress, revealing a swirling mark. The man grunted his excitement at the discovery he contained in his arms.

Closing her eyes, she tried to reach out, to find a path through the hatred and darkness surrounding her, but it was too much.

"What do we have here," he breathed in her ear. His heated breath swept over her neck, sending heinous chills down her spine.

The girl dropped her head in defeat. I’ve let them down, she cried, allowing the tears to build in her green eyes.

"I’d say we have a big pile of dust," a male voice called out.

The man holding her jerked forward as a heavy object came crashing into his lower back. She heard the echo of the seal breaking before losing her balance with the sudden movement and falling to the floor. A cloud of dust rained down on her a moment later.

"Are you okay," a gentle arm helped her to her feet.

"Rory," she croaked, wrapping her arms tightly around her cousin.

Taking the comfort for only an instant, he shrugged off her arms. "We don’t have time for this now. We have to get you out of here. The exits have been sealed."

Taking in the banquet hall around her, she saw the fires being used to entrap them within its walls. Bodies were strewn on the ground, others were still struggling to live as the enemy closed in. Then, she noticed it.

"Over here," she yelled, grabbing Rory’s hand. They ran to the nearest wall as she pointed to a vent. "Through this," she told him.

Using his powers, Rory dissolved the screws and the cover fell to the ground. "You first," he ordered, clasping his hands together so he could give her a boost.

She placed her foot in them, using all of her might to hoist herself up. The metal bent under her knees, snapping back when she moved. "Go," she heard Rory’s voice echoing in the ventilator shaft.

Crawling on her hands and knees through the wandering maze, she hurried, trying to put as much distance as she could between herself and the slaughter she was escaping. Everyone she loved was in that room. Now, they were gone.

Spying light seeping through another vent, she waved her hand behind her, motioning for Rory to follow her. He’s all I have left, she told herself. Making her way to the registers, she used her powers to melt the screws. However, when she turned to look for her cousin, no one was there.

"Rory," she let out a loud whisper. The name repeated itself, bouncing off the metal, but no answer returned.

She hesitated, waited for his head to peek from around a corner. Any sign that he had made it too. A minute passed, then another. "He’s not there," she muttered unbelievably to herself. "There’s no one now."

It was the last conscious thought that passed through her head that day.

When Serena Ross woke up, she was surrounded by police, investigators, and medics. Someone had stumbled across her body lying in a pile of trash just below a broken register. She was alone, scared, and under suspicion of murder.


[ edited 9 time(s), last at 12-Feb-2003 9:10:25 PM ]
posted on 19-Jan-2003 3:18:11 PM by Anniepoo98
Sure Kath. I would love to make a banner for Union!

Annie*happy*


posted on 21-Jan-2003 10:18:48 AM by Anniepoo98
Come on... just a bit more love!

Annie*happy*


posted on 22-Jan-2003 9:55:05 PM by Anniepoo98
Hey everyone... thank you for feedback. Special thanks to Kath for being superbeta! Thank you!

Hey Ripley, the girl in the banner portraying Serena is Alicia Witt. She just seemed to fit.

I hope everyone likes this next part.

Annie*happy*

Part One:

Maria glanced down at the newspaper that was currently adorning the sidewalk, stopping to pick it up. "Liz isn’t going to like this," she whispered to Alex as they made their way through the doors of the Crashdown. "Not at all."

"What is it," Alex asked, glancing over Maria’s shoulder. Then, he noticed the story absorbing the front page.

A Family Reunion Turns Deadly
Seventh Group Murder in a Series of Cult Killings-One Survivor


"Oh damn," he muttered, quickly grabbing the paper and shoving it behind his back as he saw Liz behind the counter. She was pouring a cup of coffee with a dazed expression on her face.

"Morning," Alex greeted her, abnormally cheerful.

Maria laid her book bag on the counter. "I thought you hated coffee?"

Liz took a sip, wincing at the bitter taste. "I do, but I have to keep awake somehow."

"Here," Maria sympathized, passing Liz the sugar. "Add a lot of this."

Tipping the cylinder, Liz watched as the tiny granules flowed into her coffee, like it was the most interesting thing in the world.

"So…" Alex trailed off. "Are you going to tell us what is going on with you, or do you want to play 20 questions?"

Liz stopped pouring the sugar. "There’s nothing wrong with me."

"Sure," Maria scoffed, shaking her head in disbelief. "And I’ll believe that the second Michael turns into a romantic and starts buying me flowers."

"I thought that wasn’t going to happen until pigs learned to fly," Alex joked, playfully bumping Maria in the shoulder with his own.

Maria nodded her head. "Yup. It’s a sign that the end of the world is coming."

Those words rang though Liz’s mind and her head snapped up. "What did you say, " she gasped as the coffee mug slipped from her fingers.

It shattered the second it made contact with the tile. "Liz," Maria called out, rushing behind the counter. "Are you okay? You didn’t get cut?"

Liz shook her head. "No," she mumbled, grabbing a washcloth and carefully getting down on her knees to gather up the broken glass. "I was just startled for a second."

"Awww Parker," Sean Deluca sighed. "Does my presence unnerve you that much?"

"I know that it makes me nauseous," Maria mentioned, rolling her eyes at her cousin.

Sean returned the gesture. "Was I talking to you?"

Maria shook her head. "No, but because you’re family, I feel the obligation to occasionally address you in public. Feel lucky?"

"Sure," Sean muttered sarcastically. "Maria Deluca talked to me. I need to go buy that winning lottery ticket."

"Speaking of tickets, I saw that you got one for speeding last night. Mom’s going to kill you," Maria informed him. "And what were you doing out on 380 anyway?"

"She has to find out first," Sean retorted. "And none of your business."

Maria stuck her tongue out at him.

"Real mature," he commented before mimicking the same action.

Alex ignored them, turning his full attention to Liz, who seemed to be ignoring everyone. Nope, she just stood there, staring right out the window. The bell rang on the door to the restaurant, causing Alex to push his chair around. That was when he saw what Liz was staring at.

Max Evans had just walked into the Crashdown with Tess Harding right beside him.

He watched as Max and Liz’s glance met across the room, igniting the tension that could probably rival the desert heat outside. Or maybe that was the passion that still burned between the two. Alex wasn’t sure, but he sure as hell wasn’t going to do a thing to stop it. He knew that whatever was happening between Max and Liz needed to come to a boiling point sooner or later. After all, they hadn’t spoken since the night Brody held them hostage.

Alex was just hoping it would happen sooner.

But not that day. "So Parker," Sean’s voice cut though the moment.

Liz slowly moved her head to face him.

"When are we going to go on that date you promised me," he said smoothly. "It’s almost been a month. You shouldn’t keep a guy hanging like this."

"No," Maria interjected. "When he smells as bad as you, I would just cut the line and toss him back in the river."

"Shut up Deluca," he told her, keeping his eyes focused on Liz. "So how about Friday?"

Sneaking one last look at Max, Liz nodded her head. "Whatever… sure. I’ve gotta go… school."

Liz gathered her books in a hurry and rushed out the front door of the café, brushing right past Max and Tess in the process. Maria grabbed her bag, then took off right after her, but not before muttering ‘bastard’ under her breath when she went past Max. Alex just grabbed his stuff, following like he always did.

One thing was for sure. Even though Liz was gone, the tension was still present because Max’s eyes followed Liz out the door, down the sidewalk, until she disappeared. Then, he turned them to Sean, who was doing the exact same thing. For a brief moment their gazes met and a smile crept across Sean’s lips, almost like he was challenging Max to do something.



[ edited 1 time(s), last at 22-Jan-2003 9:59:18 PM ]
posted on 25-Jan-2003 11:20:31 PM by Anniepoo98
Just a bit more love! PRETTY PRETTY PLEASE!

Annie*happy*


posted on 29-Jan-2003 7:59:22 PM by Anniepoo98
Hey everyone... lookie who's back. And let me see... did I bring that part with me. Oh... sure did!

So Kath, been telling everyone?!? Thank you for mentioning it to Rachie. And of course, for proofreading the parts*happy*!*happy*!*happy*

Hey Rachie.... I'm glad you're liking this so far. It's such a great challenge.

Ripley... Alica Witt has been in "Mr. Holland's Opus," "Urban Legend," and "Two Weeks Notice" is her latest. AS for the setting... this story is taking OTM as it should have aired... before HOM. So no prom, no cementing of T/M, and no baby! As for you other questions... why Maria thinks Liz will be upset by the paper, it comes later. But all will be explained... trust me!

Without further ado, here be the part! I hope you all like it!

Annie*happy*

Part Two:

"Tell me again why you didn’t punch his lights out," Michael asked Max as he fiddled with the remote to his television. "After all, you know that all he wants to do is…"

Isabel laid a hand on Michael’s shoulder roughly. "Don’t finish that sentence."

Michael shrugged off the hand. "What? I was going to say respect her as a woman," he retorted.

She looked down at him, thoroughly unamused. "I’ll believe that the second you turn into a romantic and buy Maria flowers."

"I’m with Isabel on this one," Tess commented. "Personally, I want to avoid all possible scarring images that would have come if you had finished the sentence."

Everyone turned to look at her.

"Hey," Tess said, shifting a bit uncomfortably in the recliner. "I joke. It does happen people."

"So that’s what that was," Michael said sarcastically. His face lit up with amusement, then quickly, it faded away. "Nope. Still not funny. Besides, I still don’t get why Sean gets to be part of the I-Know-An-Alien club in the first place."

Tess rolled her eyes. "Because perfect Parker had to…"

"Enough," Max ordered, cutting her off abruptly. "It wasn’t Liz’s fault, Tess. In fact, she was right that night. It’s my fault Sean got shot and I had to heal him."

"Just because she has the ability to make you feel guilty for everything that has ever happened, doesn’t mean it’s actually your fault," Tess argued.

Max’s head dropped, swaying side to side as if he was racking his brains for a way to explain it to her. "Liz doesn’t have to make me feel guilty. I do just fine on my own."

Isabel let out a long sigh. "As interesting as this is to talk about, there are still more important things we should discuss… like all these murders."

"And what makes you think it has anything to do with us," Tess questioned. "All the papers are just calling them weird occult killings."

"With crime scenes and bodies covered in alien symbols," Isabel threw back at her. "I recognize the markings, Tess. So does Max. We all know them."

"Doesn’t mean that it has anything to do with us," Michael countered.

All three of them just stared at him.

Michael shrugged his shoulders. "Okay, maybe it does."

"What do we do now Max," Tess asked, glancing over at Max, concern in her eyes.

Max ran a hand thought his hair. "I don’t know," he told them. "I really don’t know, but we have to figure out something. This latest one was in Albuquerque. Whoever they are, they’re getting closer."

"Well, what about the girl," Michael threw in a suggestion. "I think the news said something about a girl that survived. Why don’t we talk to her?"

"Like we can get to her," Tess scoffed, shooting the idea down. "The police have been questioning her ever since it happened. They’re never going to just let us walk in there and talk to her."

"Can’t you just… you know," Michael said, rapidly blinking his eyes.

A puzzled look appeared on Tess’s face. "Blink them to death?"

"Signal them with Morse code," Isabel asked, equally confused.

His shoulders dropped. "Mindwarp them Tess. Mindwarp them," Michael exclaimed.

"My powers are still on the fritz," she sighed, leaning back in the chair. "I haven’t even been able to fix a bowl I knocked over last week. The second the Sheriff finds out, I’m in trouble."

"But it’s been a month," Isabel commented in disbelief. "Brody took you guys hostage a month ago, and you only mindwarped Maria’s mom then. No offense, but the woman doesn’t have much in the way of deep thoughts running around up there."

"Besides," Michael jumped in. "After Max, healed those kids, it only took him a couple of weeks for his powers to go back to normal."

"Damn," Tess retorted. "Why doesn’t everyone just gang up on me? I save our asses and I get hell for it." She turned to look at Max. "Have anything you want to add?"

Max just shook his head, keeping it hung low.

"Come on Maxwell," Michael egged on. "Thoughts, comments, suggestions. Hell, I’d settle for a quip. We’re in deep shit here, great leader of ours. Lead."

Slowly, Max stood up and walked towards the door.

Isabel watched him. "Where are you going?"

"Home," he told them plainly. "And my suggestion is that we all do the same. Right now, nothing is going to get decided if we keep fighting."

"Great," Michael grunted. "Once again, we’re waiting. Superior leadership."

"I don’t want to fight," Max told Michael. "And I’ve never wanted to be the leader." With that, he walked out the door.

"Perfect," Isabel groaned, running after her brother.

"What was that all about," Michael asked Tess, who was just as stunned as he was.

"One guess," Tess offered.

"Liz," Michael nodded his head. Of course it was Liz. With Max, it was always Liz.

"Yeah," Tess confirmed. "She made a date with Sean Deluca right in front of him, like he was nothing. I don’t get why he lets her just do things like that to him," she muttered loudly enough for Michael to hear.

"It’s not like they’re dating," Michael informed her, shocked at the sound of his own voice defending Liz Parker.

Reaching out, she grabbed her purse, heading in the direction of the door as well. "The way he acts, they might as well be," she mumbled.

~~~~~~~~

"I don’t like this at all, Phillip," Diane protested, following her husband down the staircase. "You’re actually planning to bring that girl back here!"

Phillip shook his head, turning to face his wife in the process. He needed for her to understand. "I can’t leave her there, Diane. The media frenzy alone would be enough to drive a person crazy. Now, add that on top of everything she has suffered."

"Probably by her own hand," Diane argued. "She’s suspected of killing all those people. If she isn’t guilty, then why hasn’t she talked to anyone since they brought her in for questioning?"

Taking a deep breath, Phillip tried to keep his temper in control. "She’s lost everything," he replied, the edge of his rising anger cutting though his voice. "And she needs my help… our help. Please understand, Diane, that I have to do this."

Diane shook her head. "I need a reason first. Why is this so important?"

Searching for the words to explain it to her, Phillip found his thoughts interrupted by the sound of the front door opening. "Mom, Dad," Isabel’s voice called out.

"In the living room," Diane answered.

Watching as both Max and Isabel appeared in the archway, Phillip found himself looking at the answer to Diane’s question. His beautiful children. The gifts God had bestowed upon them so many years ago that night in the desert.

"They’re why I have to do this," he stated simply, looking from Max and Isabel to Diane.

The confusion Diane felt because of that statement quickly became apparent on her face. "What do you mean ‘they’re why’," she demanded, pointing to Max and Isabel, who were now equally confused.

"What’s going on?" Max questioned, having never seen this kind of tension between his parents. It was apparent that he and Isabel had walked in on a very intense argument.

However, Phillip didn’t turn to face his son, or make a move to answer his question. His gaze remained focused on his wife. "The look in her eyes. All the pain, sadness, and loneliness. It reminded me of the night we found Max and Isabel in the desert. It’s the same look, Diane. I can no more turn her away than I could have left them."

Diane stood stunned for a moment. The words she had been preparing failed to come when she opened her mouth. Max and Isabel were her one weakness and Phillip knew it. She didn’t know whether to be furious at him for using it against her or to love him more for his kindness. All she knew was that she still wasn’t happy he was bring Serena Ross to Roswell.

Knowing that her children were still standing there, not having a clue as to what was going on, Diane turned to look at them. "Can you go wait in the car, kids? We’re having dinner at the Crashdown."

"What about Dad?" Isabel asked, worry haunting her eyes.

"I’m leaving for Albuquerque. I won’t be back until late," Phillip explained, reaching for Isabel and giving her a quick reassuring hug. "Go, have fun eating space burgers with your mom."

"Okay," Isabel said, hovering near her father for a moment before moving back towards Max. "We’ll be out in the car."

Diane nodded, walking around Phillip to grab her purse on the table. "So Jeff Parker agreed to do this out of nowhere?"

He shook his head. "No, I ran into Jeff earlier. He was reading about the murders in the paper. We started talking about it. Said he wanted to help, and I had a feeling you wouldn’t be to wild about me bringing her here."

Letting out a deep sigh, Diane fumbled around in her purse, searching for her keys. "I assume that Nancy knows nothing about this."

Phillip shrugged a bit. "I don’t know if Jeff has told her. That was up to him. But I do know that he trusts me about this. He believes Serena is completely innocent, and so do I."

"I hope you’re both right for all our sakes," she sighed, heading out the door.


posted on 31-Jan-2003 10:06:19 PM by Anniepoo98
Howdy all,

Okay.... here's the thing! I know that it has been forever between parts of most of my stories, and trust me I am working on them. Hell, I was hoping to get a few out this weekend or the beginning of next week. However, the truth is, I don't know how long it actually might be. Because of the wonderful icy conditions in my area, I fell down today as I was going to work and pretty much pulled my knee out of the socket. Needless to say, I am in this tremindously awkward to sit at a desk and type with this huge leg contraption brace thing they are having me wear.

I am really really sorry, but I try to get them done and out as soon as I can!

Annie*happy*





posted on 5-Feb-2003 4:47:53 PM by Anniepoo98
Hey all,

I hope to have another part to this story out tonight... if I get the chance. The other stories will have to wait a little bit longer.

My knee is starting to heal, but the dr's are keeping a close eye on it due to some complications I had a few days ago.

I will do my best to get more parts out as soon as I can.

Annie*happy*

posted on 6-Feb-2003 12:02:31 AM by Anniepoo98
Here it is. The next part. I hope you all like it!

Annie*happy*

Part Three:

Max, Isabel, and Diane quickly made their way to a booth the moment they entered the Café. A few minutes later, Maria approached the table, donning the usual fake greeting she gave to irritating customers.

"Welcome to the Crashdown Café. I’m Maria and I’ll be your waitress for the evening. Can I start you off with a drink," she rambled, plastic smile plastered on her face.

"Cherry Coke," Max mumbled softly, knowing that Maria’s cold attitude was because of him.

"Sprite," Isabel requested.

Diane thought for a second. "I’ll just have water."

Maria nodded, without writing a thing on her order pad. Turning swiftly, she stopped when she heard Diane call her back. "Did you need something else, Mrs. Evans?"

"Yes," Diane replied, trying to sound cheerful. "Is Nancy around? I really need to talk to her about something."

"I’m not sure," Maria said honestly. "I can take a look in the back."

"Thanks," Diana smiled.

"What is going on?" Isabel asked, not able to take not knowing any longer. "Why do you have to talk to Mrs. Parker?"

"It’s just something about a case your father is working on," she answered gently, laying a reassuring hand over one of Isabel’s. "Nothing for you to worry about."

Max looked over at his sister and she back at him. Neither was that easily convinced that was the truth. "Then why were you and Dad arguing earlier?" Isabel questioned further.

"We weren’t arguing," Diane started to explain.

"It seemed intense, Mom," Max stated, just as eager as Isabel to find out what was going on.

Diane let out a hefty sigh of tension that had been building in her chest. She hated to worry her children. Both Max and Isabel always seemed like they had the weight of the world on their shoulders and she despised adding to it. Yet, it only seemed right that they knew the truth.

"Your father is bringing one of his clients to Roswell," she explained. "She’s going to be staying here, with the Parkers, at least until the media frenzy dies down."

"Why would you argue about it?" Isabel pushed, searching her mother’s eyes for the truth.

"Is she dangerous?" Max asked. He could feel fear ebbing at his conscious, hinting that the answer to his question wasn’t something he really wanted to hear.

"You’re father doesn’t think so," Diane continued. "I’m not so sure."

Max ran a hand through his hair. "Who is she? What case are you talking about?" he demanded, needing to know what kind of danger was coming.

Looking down at the table top, Diane took a deep breath. "The girl they’re questioning for family reunion murders up in Albuquerque."

Isabel’s head instantly turned to toward where her brother was sitting. "Max," she gasped, but it was too late.

Max quickly got up from the booth, making his way to the back of the restaurant. I have to see Liz, he thought over and over again, as he pushed aside the door leading to the break room.

And there was where he encountered the barrier otherwise known as Maria.

"Where do you think you’re going?" she demanded, pressing a hand firmly against Max’s chest to stop him.

"I have to talk to her," he told her.

Maria shook her head. "I don’t think so. That’s the last thing she needs right now."

"I’m not here to fight or argue, but I need to talk to her," Max attempted to reason with Maria.

With one eyebrow raising on instinct, Maria folded her arms across her chest. "Really Max, about what? Cause unless I hear the word apology come out of your mouth, there is no way you’re getting into that apartment."

"I’m sorry about what happened in the museum," Max confessed. "About Sean getting hurt, your mother witnessing it all, that Brody took you all hostage…"

"Not the right things," Maria interrupted him. "You’re not being sorry about the right things, Max. Sean got himself hurt, I can take care of myself, and my mother sure as hell can. What about Liz?"

A smile tugged at one corner of Max’s mouth, despite everything that was going on. Typical Maria, the thought ran unbidden through his mind.

"What are you smiling about?" Maria scolded.

"Nothing," Max replied simply.

"Liar," Maria called him on it. "Let me tell you something, Max. Your chances of getting up there are not looking to good. God, aren’t you even the least bit sorry about what happened to Liz when we were taken hostage? Brody almost killed her. She had to watch you cuddle with Tess. Hell, she has to go on a date with my cousin of all people to cover your butts again."

Max looked Maria dead in the eyes. "You know that I never wanted any of that to happen. I would do anything to keep Liz safe. That is why I have to see her." Then he paused for a second, thinking about the things Maria had listed off to him. "And I never cuddled with Tess," he refuted.

"Sure," Maria retorted. "Then how do you explain the two of you this morning, buddy boy? After all, you and Tess have been getting awfully friendly lately."

Falling back on his nervous habit, Max ran a hand through his hair again. "She’s been helping me remember things that happened back on Antar. This morning I gave her a ride to school."

"After she spent the night at…," Maria continued in her interrogation.

Max found himself a little weirded out at the implication. "The Valentis," he replied quickly.

Maria reached out and gave Max a tiny slap on the arm. "Now those answers are much better. I guess I can let you go see Liz."

Letting out a deep sigh of relief. "Thank you," he said, moving past her to the staircase.

"Just one more thing," Maria called out after him.

Max’s shoulders dropped as he turned to face her. "What?"

"Hurt her," Maria began, "and I will rip your heart out with a pair of salad tongs… okay?"

Nodding, Max sped up his assent to the Parker apartment.

~~~~~~~~~

I didn't come this far
For you to make this hard for me.
And now you want to ask me "how?"
It's like - how does your heart beat,
And why do you breathe?
How does your heart beat,
And why do you breathe?
"How" ~ Lisa Loeb


Liz sat on the couch, cradling her knees under her chin. In front of her, the television played the evening news broadcast.

"Even thought details are still sketchy, a reliable source from the Albuquerque courthouse has made a statement that the girl held for questioning in a string of occult murders will be released tonight into her lawyer’s custody," the man relayed.

Closing her eyes, Liz leaned her head back, resting it on the back of the couch. Tell me something I don’t know, she thought as her fingers fumbled for the remote. "But you’re wrong about one thing buddy," she muttered, pressing the off button. "She’s not going to the Evans’ house. Nope, she coming here. So there."

So caught up in her thoughts, Liz almost didn’t hear the knocking on the apartment door. It started out like a gentle rapping, polite and even. Then it quickly escalated, as though the person on the other side was growing more and more desperate for an answer.

"Who is it," Liz called out, still not moving from her spot.

"Max," was the simple reply.

Liz’s eyes shot open. Instantly, she got off the couch, moving across the living room towards the door. Undoing the latch, she turned the handle, opening the door wide.

"Hello," his voice filled her ears, low and quiet as his eyes met hers.

"Hi," she whispered back, a confused expression appearing on her face. "What are you doing here?"

Max swallowed hard. Seeing her standing there, that particular look clouding her features, reminded him how strained things had become between them. "Can I come in," he finally managed to ask.

Liz nodded her head, moving aside as he took the tentative steps into her home. "So what brings you by," she questioned, trying to force her voice to sound cheerful. Yet, it came out strained, sending the urge to hide through her entire body. After all, it was easier to hide than face him, to face all the things she had done to him.

Hell, it was easier to hide rather than admit all the secrets she still kept from him.

"We need to talk," Max said, a hint of panic lacing his words.

A slightly forced smile spread cross Liz’s lips. "I kinda figured. Just tell me what’s going on?"

"Are you really going to go out with Sean Deluca," Max blurted out before he had a chance to think.

Stepping back a bit, Liz was caught of guard by the urgency of the question. Out of all the things she expected to come out of his mouth, that was certainly the last on the list. "I…I don’t see where I have much of a choice," she stammered.

Max stood there for a moment, considering what he was going to say next. All he could tell Liz was the truth. "I don’t like it, Liz."

"That really doesn’t matter, now does it," Liz countered, moving even farther away from him. "If I don’t, he tells everyone about you. Isabel, Michael, and Tess too. We both know that can’t happen."

She made her way into the kitchen, opening the refrigerator door. "You want," she asked, holding up a bottle of water.

Shaking his head in response, Max followed her into the kitchen. Another long pause followed. "I don’t trust him," he admitted, breaking the silence.

Liz slammed the bottle of water down on the counter causing some of the water to splash out. "What else do you expect me to do," she cried out in frustration.

Leaning against the counter, head hung low, Max let out a long sigh. "I don’t know."

Glancing over at him and he could see the flair of irritation in her eyes. "Fine. Then we stick with my plan," she said evenly, pushing away from the counter. "Anything else?"

Max took a deep breath. "My father is bringing one of his clients to stay in Roswell. She going to be…"

"Staying here," Liz finished just before taking a sip of water. "I know. My parents told me."

"Be careful," Max said softly. The pleading look in his eyes caused a shiver to descend her spine.

"Why," Liz questioned, searching his eyes for the answer. "After all, your father wouldn’t have even asked if he thought she was dangerous. Right?"

Max ran a hand through his hair. God, how he hated doing this to her. Seconds passed, then minutes until he finally opened his mouth to speak, but by that time Liz had already figured it out.

"She’s not an alien," she joked slightly, hoping that he would tell her she was wrong. However, when she saw his mouth close instantly, jaw tightening slightly, her hope was dashed. "Is she?"

"She might be," Max confessed, looking away. "We think she might be."

"We," Liz retorted. "Whose we?"

"Michael, Isabel, Tess, and I," Max replied.

"I see," Liz said, her eyes darting furiously around the room. "Can I ask when you were going to tell the rest of us? After all, it’s been almost two days since it’s happen, and the first family was murdered more than three weeks ago."

"We didn’t think…," Max started to explain, but Liz was far beyond explanations.

"That’s true," she snapped harshly. "Max, we had the right to know. Even if your father wasn’t her lawyer, how long to you think it would have been before they found us. Albuquerque. The latest murders were in Albuquerque. That’s too close for us not to know anything about it."

Max crossed the distance between them till she was only a few inches away. "We weren’t even sure ourselves until now."

Liz tilted her head to the side. "How?"

"The symbols," Max admitted. "Isabel and I sort of recognized them. I think Michael and Tess did too, but they aren’t that eager to say."

"So they’re not occult markings," Liz muttered to herself. "They’re alien."

"Yeah," Max sighed. Then, the tone in his voice turned more urgent. "That’s why I want you to stay as far away from her as you can."

"It will be kinda hard seeing as how she’ll be sleeping three feet away from me," Liz exclaimed. She took a step away from Max, moving till her back was facing him. "Maybe this is a good thing," she whispered, so low, he could barely hear her. "I can keep an eye on her. Find out what she is up to."

"No," Max demanded. "It’s too dangerous. I won’t let you do that."

Liz stiffened. "It’s not your decision."

The next thing she knew, Max came up directly behind her. Placing a hand on one shoulder, he quickly turned her to face him. Liz felt her body come almost flush against his, and she saw the anger burning in his eyes.

"It’s too dangerous," he repeated, emphasizing every word. "Hell, we don’t even know what she is."

Liz could feel the heat from his palm radiated though the material of her shirt. "Well I," she trailed off, distracted by how close he was. "I might be the only way to find out."

Max features softened until they became almost pleading. "I can’t lose you," he told her.

"You won’t," Liz attempted to reassure him. "I’ll be careful."

Shaking his head, Max looked down. "That’s not what I mean. God Liz, we haven’t spoken in weeks."

Liz’s eyes found themselves wandering down to the floor as well. "I know."

Max’s fingers started to play with the ends of her hair on their own accord. "Nothing make sense anymore and it’s driving me crazy. Everything that has happened between us, or to us seems to be pushing us further apart."

"Max," Liz started to say. Yet, she could sense his fingers tangling with her hair, while his other hand began to trail from her shoulder up her neck, finally coming to a stop against her lips. His thumb pressed gently there, keeping Liz from finishing her sentence.

"I want it to stop," he declared. "I need you, Liz."

Tears started to form in her eyes, burning with the desire to pour down her cheeks. However, she fought them back, willing them not to come just yet.

"You need her," she forced out, shaking her head. "You need Tess, not me."

"That’s not true," Max insisted. "The only person I’ve ever wanted, needed, was you. I don’t care about what happened in a past life or this one for that matter. I love you."

A gasp escaped her lips. "No…. no. Please don’t do this Max," she whimpered, pulling away from him.

Max’s hope simply crumbled when he hear her protests. Rejected, he took a step back, allowing her the space she needed.

"I think you should go," Liz asked, closing her eyes tight. "Please go."

Her plea was answered as she heard his receding footsteps, then the door closed.


posted on 7-Feb-2003 9:07:32 AM by Anniepoo98
Have faith! After all, a little angst is a good thing!

Annie*happy*
posted on 12-Feb-2003 9:06:13 PM by Anniepoo98
Howdy all, wow... bumps and everything! Jumping for joy... well, I would be if I could actually jump. On the up and up, the brace is off (thank god, it was annoying) and the doctor's think that everything in the knee will go back to normal... I just have to avoid ice if at all possible. But thank you all for sticking with me!!!!!!!!!!! You have no idea how much I apperciate it!

Annie*happy*

PS.... I brought a new part with me tonight... did I forget to mention that!?! Here it is...

Part Four:

Isabel watched from the sofa in the employee lounge as her brother descended the steps from the Parker apartment. "That bad," she commented, searching his face.

"Understatement," Max scoffed as he made his way towards her.

She crunched her nose in thought. "I sorta figured. At least, it sounded that way to me."

A horrified expression appeared on Max’s face. "You were listening?"

"You were gone for like thirty minutes," Isabel said in her defense. "Mom was ready to send out a search party."

Max collapsed down next her on her the sofa. "So, how much did you hear?"

"Not a lot," she reassured him. She paused for a moment, and a long sigh escaped her lips. "Just enough to know how you still feel about Liz."

"Don’t sound so happy about it," Max retorted, noting the tone in Isabel’s voice.

Isabel rolled her eyes. "It’s not what you thinking, Max. I just can’t help wondering that if you and Liz are so right, then how come everything keeps going wrong?"

Max glanced over at her. "Is that a rhetorical question?"

A slight smirk crossed her lips. "Possibly. But really, think about it. Things between the two of your have been getting worse and worse. After all, she slept with Kyle."

"Yeah," Max conceded. "Maybe."

Isabel’s eyes widened a bit. "You don’t think she did?"

"If she wanted out of the alien abyss so bad, then how come she is still so deep in it," Max wondered aloud, leaning his head against the back of the sofa. "For example take our current situation."

Now, Isabel was confused. "What do you mean?"

"I asked Liz to say away from dad’s client," he explained. "She refused. Instead, she wants to help us figure out what this girl is up to."

A look of pure shock appeared on Isabel’s face. "Did you explain that we think she might be…"

"Who might be what," Maria questioned as she and Michael came out of the kitchen. "Please fill in the blanks with ‘Tess’ and "bitc…"

"Maria," Michael cut her off.

Maria rolled her eyes, letting out an exasperated sigh at the same time. "Fine," she conceded. "But at least tell me who you are talking about, if it’s not Tess. I mean you all look as though this huge checkslovain threat…"

The realization dawned on her before she finished her sentence. "That’s it, isn’t it," she accused, whirling around instantly to face Michael. "And you didn’t tell me!"

Michael took a step backwards. "We didn’t know for sure. We still don’t."

Maria moved with him. "But you suspected. You had hints and clues that some big bad was coming you never told me about," she ranted as she poked at his chest with her finger. "Well buster, you’re going to tell me about it this instant."

Isabel took a deep breath. "We think that those family murders in Albuquerque might be universally related."

"Okay," Maria said as she pondered the thought. "Still, they think that all these strange killings are related, and the others started about three weeks ago."

Michael watched carefully, judging what Maria’s reaction was going to be. However, he wasn’t prepared for her to suddenly turned to him again, hitting his arm with all her might.

"Three weeks," she shouted. "You knew for three weeks and said nothing. "That’s it. You all are on the top of my grrr list. In fact, I’m going to go make a list right now just so you can be on the top of it. Hell, Sean is rating higher then all of you now.""

"It wasn’t like that," Michael defended himself. "We seriously didn’t suspect anything until week ago."

"The family in Tucson," Maria muttered.

Michael nodded. "Yeah. The newspapers showed a photo of the crime scene with all those symbols."

"Isabel and I recognized them," Max finally spoke up. "They’re not occult. They’re…"

"Otherworldly," Isabel finished for him.

Maria’s heated gazed turned on Max the second he opened his mouth. She had barely registered the fact that Isabel was talking as well. "So," she hissed lightly. "What did you have to see Liz about Max? It does have something to do with this, doesn’t it?"

Max swallowed hard, finding it difficult to meet her eyes. "The girl the police have been questioning in Albuquerque is a client of our dad’s. He’s bringing her to Roswell."

"Shit," Michael grumbled. "When the hell did this happen?"

"This afternoon," Isabel answered. "We found out when we got home."

"This is perfect," Michael scoffed. "This is just dandy. What are we suppose to do now?"

Max shrugged his shoulders.

"God, do all aliens have the indecision gene," Maria mumbled, steady tap resonating through the lounge as she repeatedly tapped her tennis-clad foot on the floor. "What else," she demanded expectantly, like she could read their minds that there was more.

"What do you mean what else," Michael went off, beginning to pace back and forth. "A new, probably homicidal, alien is coming to live with Max and Isabel. Isn’t this enough, Maria?"

"She’s not staying with us," Isabel admitted.

Michael feet came to a stop instantly. "Then where is she staying?"

Clearing his throat, Max leaned forward, resting his elbows on his knees. "Here."

"Bastard," Maria yelled, turning on one heal and storming off into the restaurant.

Hesitating for a moment, Michael’s eyes met with Max, sort of asking for a solution. Max nodded and he ran off after Maria.

Isabel let out a light snort. "God, I never thought the day would come when I’d be afraid of Maria Deluca."

"She’s dating Michael," Max remarked. "Enough said."

"True," Isabel laughed, a hint of fear lacing the sound. "So, you’re going to let this happen? Let that girl stay with Liz?"

Max rubbed at his eyes, finally covering them with his hands. "Liz was right about one thing. I really don’t have a choice. She is going to do whatever she feels is right."

Isabel stared at him with a shocked expression donning her face. "And you’re letting it go at that?"

"No," Max stated, dropping his hands from his face. "She’ll do what she has to, and I’ll do what I have to."

"Meaning…" Isabel trailed off, "you’re going to watch her every move."

A ripple a laugher bellowed. Isabel looked over at her brother like he had lost his mind.

"Not like I didn’t have years of practice," he thought aloud, still chuckling ridiculously.

"This is not funny," Isabel told him in disbelief. "I cannot believe you are laughing at a time like this."

"I made one little joke," Max retorted. "Let me hold on to the tiny sense of disillusionment that allowed me to make it."

Isabel rolled her eyes. "Whatever. So, I guess you’re staying here."

"Yup," Max agreed. "I need to see what we’re up against."



BTW.... I just put a little one parter on this board a few days ago. It's FMax and Liz.... called "Seconds to Oblivion." Give it a peek, if you have time!

Annie*happy*