posted on 23-Jan-2002 6:40:43 AM by jane
Title: What Is Max Hiding?
Category: M/L and everyone else.
Author: jane E-mail: illta1985⊕
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: They are not mine (mores the pity!). The characters of Roswell belong to Melinda Metz, UPN, Jason Katims and all the wonderful people who we all love for starting this fabulous series (but who we are frustrated with, for messing with the beautiful, 1st season story line!). No infringement or disrespect is intended. I’m just borrowing them!
I want to thank my friends and excellent betas, Ladylou and deraZor for All of their Help! You two ladies are the Best! Thanks again! Love, jane

Summary: This is my attempt to Fix S3, with the focus on Mr. Evans’ search for the truth about his son, Max. This story starts at the end of “Samuel Rising”, the Christmas episode. Hope you enjoy it, please let me know! ~jane

What Is Max Hiding? Part 1

Isabel Evans-Ramirez was smiling as she watched young Samuel being held by his mother and father, while she dream-walked all three of them. But just as she was about to back out of that beautiful moment, Samuel turned his head and looked straight at her, smiling his innocent smile. Then the next moment, he had turned back to his dad, who cuddled him, close.

“So, did it work?” Max asked his sister, as she came out of her trance.

“Yeah, it did.” Isabel answered, blinking several times.

‘No, Samuel couldn’t have seen me.’ She assured herself.

“So, what was it like in there; inside his head?” Max asked.

“It was beautiful.” She smiled.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

December 26th.

“So, what did you find?” Mr. Evans asked the private investigator he had hired to follow his son, Max. The men were meeting in Mr. Evans’ office, before regular business hours, on the day after Christmas.

“I found these.” The man said, opening up his briefcase and taking out five, gold, facetted balls, about the size of golf balls; two, blue objects, the size and shape of small footballs, a triangular pendant and a strange book, made with metal pages, held together with metal rings.

“What are these markings, stamped into these pages; they look like they are in code.” Mr. Evans remarked.

“I don’t know, sir; I didn’t look inside. I just cleaned them off a little and then stuck them all in my case.” The P.I. said. “Took me forever to find the spot where they had been buried; those two boys did a good job of covering their tracks.”

“How were you able to find these, then?” Mr. Evans asked.

“The photos I took gave me an approximate location and then my metal-detector picked up a faint trace on that book, there.” Mr. Evans nodded, as he pushed the items aside and sat down behind his desk.

“What can you tell me about Max and Isabel’s activities over the last few days?”

“Well, as you warned me, your daughter has been spending all of her time working with various charities around town, including Santa’s Village. Something interesting occurred there, Christmas Eve day. Your son showed up to see Santa, with a woman and her small son.” He gave Phillip Evans their names and address. “Max has been working or playing with little Samuel, who is reported to be autistic, for several days; even to the extent of visiting the boy’s psychiatrist.”

“What is he up to; he’s just playing with the child? Do the parents leave their son alone with Max?”

“I observed that the mother was usually close by, while Max played with him. The father was usually working; I understand that he hasn’t lived with his family for several months. That may have all changed yesterday though, because I saw him moving back in. I was watching the house, because Max had dropped off a gift for the boy and I figured that he would come back later, but he didn’t.”

“So he just spent a couple days with an autistic child and then stopped going to see him? Was this some sort of charitable act Isabel set up for him?”

“I…don’t think so. I heard that little Samuel and his mother were at the Crashdown where Max was eating with some of his friends, when the little boy came over to him and called him ‘daddy’.”

“What? Does Max look anything like the boy’s father?”

“No, he doesn’t.”

“Well that is curious. Max was eating at the Crashdown, huh? He better watch out; even though Jeff Parker has mellowed a little, he would have hit the roof if he had seen Max inside his restaurant, much less eating with his daughter, Liz.” Mr. Evans shook his head. “I can’t figure those two out; their relationship has had more ups and downs than a yo-yo! They seem utterly devoted to one another when they are together and totally miserable whenever they are apart. And yet they keep on breaking up…and then making up…breaking up…making up…”

“Max spent a lot of Christmas Day with Liz Parker; they skated at the rink for quite a while.” The P.I. continued giving his report of Max’s activities to his father. “One more thing, before I go. I finally received the report on the jeep. The techs didn’t find anything left in the vehicle; under the seats or between the cushions, what was left of them, but they did find one odd fact. The jeep had been completely torched, but they could find no trace of an accelerant.”

“What about the gasoline in the tank; wouldn’t that have acted as an accelerant?” Mr. Evans asked.

“It could have, yes, but it wasn’t used. There are ways of tracking how a fire spreads and what fed it, even in cases such as this, but the experts are baffled.”

“Well, thanks for coming by to report this to me.” Mr. Evans shook the other man’s hand. “Just keep reporting Max’s activities as you’ve been doing.” He said as he showed the detective out of the office.

After Mr. Evans’ office door closed behind him, the P.I. blew out a breath and tried to remind himself to keep his professional objectivity. As intriguing as this case was; as mysterious as Max Evans was, it would do him no good to become emotionally involved with the case. This was something he had to remind himself of with each new case he took on, but this one really had his interest peaked. What was in that strange metal book? What were all of those strange balls for? He shook is head as he walked down the hall.

‘What are you hiding Max?’ Mr. Evans asked, silently, after he had closed the office door and walked over to his bulletin board. ‘Where is Tess and how are Isabel and Liz involved? What are these things; why would you bury them?’ Mr. Evans sat down again and started to flip through the metal leaves of the book. ‘Meaningless symbols.’ He thought and then he turned another page. ‘What the…?’

He was looking at pictures of his son, daughter, Michael Guerin and a girl, whom he believed was Tess Harding. One set of pictures showed them as young children; another set showed them as they had looked, two years ago; down to Michael’s spiky hair.

‘What are pictures of the four of them doing in this strange book?’

He added yet another question to the growing list, then put the book down on his desk and got up to walk over to the hidden bulletin board on which he was keeping all his notes about Max. What was going on with his son? He had always been a good kid, if overly quiet and shy; rejecting any offers of his to get him involved with something, anything, besides school, Isabel and Michael Guerin. Then, two years ago, things started to change; it seemed as though he was making friends; he even had a girlfriend. But one thing didn’t change; Max’s secrecy. And now, Phillip was discovering that there were clandestine trips and activities behind that secrecy.

He sighed. He had forgotten to ask his P.I. if he had made any headway in finding Tess Harding. Jim Valenti had never called him back with the supposed address of Tess’ aunt and uncle. Were Jim and his son, Kyle conspiring to keep Max’s secrets, as well? Mr. Evans had been really upset when he realized that Isabel was in on the conspiracy of silence and lies. Was it true that Max had gotten Tess pregnant and that she had run away; unlike Jim Valenti’s story; that she had moved to New York, to stay with relatives? What should he believe; who should he believe?

When Phillip came home he found his wife, Diane, sitting in the living room; her eyes teary and far away, her fingers running over the light blue, angora-wool scarf, which Max had given her for Christmas. He grimaced to himself. On Christmas morning, they had come out of their bedroom to find two gifts on the kitchen table…from Max. He must have snuck in during the night, or very early that morning and left them. Phillip had been given a couple fine-silk ties and Diane had received a lovely scarf but she was upset that she had been unable to give Max his gifts, which still remained beneath the Christmas tree, as she had been able to exchange gifts with Isabel and Jesse, when the four of them had had dinner together Christmas night. Diane was determined to give Max his gifts as soon as possible.

There was another mystery; where was Max getting the money to live on and buy expensive presents with? A credit check had shown that he did not have a credit card; not that having one would have helped him in the long run. And his savings account had hardly been touched. Phillip made a mental note to find out if Max was still working at the UFO Center. Isabel had said that Max was just crashing at Michael’s; meaning he wasn’t paying any rent, but there was still food and gas to pay for. Where had he stayed when he went to California?

“Diane, honey, are you all right?” Phillip asked, after he placed the box holding the strange objects on the kitchen table and then he walked over and sat next to her on the sofa.

“Hmm, what? Oh Phillip, you startled me. I was just sitting here worrying about Max, as usual. How could he afford to give me this lovely scarf and you, those nice silk ties? What is my baby living on? Isabel says that he doesn’t need any money, but…”

“I’m looking into that, Diane.” Phillip reminded her and she nodded, laying her head on his shoulder.

Phillip had told her that he was hiring a private investigator, but they must not have found any answers yet, or Phillip would have told her. Her mind warred with two different images of her son; Max, in trouble, with no money or any proper place to live…and the confident, well-mannered Max, who had been best-man at Isabel’s wedding…a son who had kept his parents from making the biggest mistake of their lives, by not attending their daughter’s wedding. “We’re having trouble and I’m sorry about that…” Diane remembered Max saying…

“I want to go speak to Brody Davis at the UFO Center about Max. I’ll be back in a little while.” Phillip told Diane before he left.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

As Liz walked over to Maria’s house, her lips twitched up into a dreamy smile, as she thought about the great time that she and Max had had together, yesterday. She remembered their first unsure steps as their skates had glided over the ice, their joy at seeing the first snow flakes start to fall and then…Liz remembered the kisses that they had shared. Her smile grew until it was a grin, but it didn’t matter, because no one else was out walking, to see her silly expression.

Then her smile dimmed. There was still an ever-present resentment in the back of Liz’s mind, which she tried to deny and bury, but which every once in a while, surfaced, even as Liz told herself that she was committed to Max and that she loved him and had forgiven him for sleeping with Tess and getting her pregnant. But it still hurt her, that he hadn’t waited for her, even though Liz knew that was irrational. Max had believed what he had seen with his own eyes and what she, herself had continually told him had happened; that she had slept with Kyle, but still it hurt, that in the end, Max had turned to Tess. At least the whole Future Max fiasco was no longer between them; they had discussed all of that over the summer.

But now to replace all of that was Max’s obsession to contact his son. Liz understood and supported his need to do so, but sometimes objected to the manner in which he went about trying to reach his child. His obsession to find their old space ship had gotten both he and Liz arrested and when he had finally found the ship, Max had ignored Liz’s phone call and would have just left in it, without saying good-bye, if the ship hadn’t been a lemon and crashed before it had barely taken off. And just the other day, Liz had become quite upset with Max because she had believed that he was just using Samuel; a young autistic boy, who had peaked Max’s interest by coming over to him in the Crashdown and calling him ‘daddy’. Max couldn’t believe that there would be any other reason for the child’s behavior, other than that Max’s own son, millions of miles away on Antar, was trying to contact him again. But in the end, Max had finally gotten a clue, that his actions had been nothing but self-serving and he had asked Isabel to dream-walk the little family and bring them together for Christmas…and forever it seamed, since Liz had heard that Samuel’s father had moved back in with his wife and child. So everything had worked out in the end and she and Max had enjoyed spending time together most of Christmas Day. Liz shook her head, as she brought her thoughts back to more cheerful memories, as she reached the DeLuca residence and walked up to the front door.

A while later, after the girls had been chatting together in Maria’s room, they heard Mrs. DeLuca talking out in the kitchen.

“He is holding a gun; he is pointing a gun at my daughter!”

“Oh no, not again.” Both girls mumbled, as they hurried into the kitchen.

“Hey Mom.” Maria called loudly, shocking her mother out of her trance…sort of.

“What is it, Maria? Oh hello, Liz.” Amy DeLuca greeted her daughter’s friend.

“Hi, Mrs. DeLuca.” Liz replied, as her eyes strayed to the older woman’s fingers, which were tapping incessantly.

“Would you girls like something to drink?”

“Uhm, no thanks, Mom; we were just on our way out.” Maria said, as both girls quickly picked up their coats, which had been thrown over two kitchen chairs and hurried out the back door.

“Liz, what are we going to do about my mom? How can Tess still be controlling her? She’s like, millions and millions of miles away.”

“I doubt she’s still in control of your mom, Maria; she probably just locked a mind-warp into her brain, which repeats and repeats itself.”

“But it can’t last forever, can it? I mean, her finger-tapping alone is driving me crazy.” Maria complained.

“Well, let’s just hope it lasts long enough for us to figure out what we’re going to tell her if she ever comes out of it. She saw an awful lot that night, when Brody took us all hostage.”

“We never did figure out what caused his equipment to short out that night.” Maria worried. “We have to figure out what to do about him, too. If he were ever to remember what really has been happening to him, during these supposed abductions of his…”

“Yeah, I’ll ask Max about your mom and Brody.” Liz said and then to change the subject, asked.

“What’s going on with you and Michael? I thought that you had broken up with him, but then Isabel said that she saw you two, on the ground, in the Elves’-house, kissing each other; and Max and I saw you two sitting on your front stoop, talking for hours, yesterday.”

“Oh…I don’t know, Liz. I mean, I thought it would be best for me to break up with Michael, so that I can, like…move on with my own life…So I can get a Real life, you know? But then I see him around town and he looks so cute and I miss just talking to him, even if most of the time he doesn’t listen, but last night he did…and oh, I Don’t Know What To DO!”

Liz just let her friend vent and then was going to recommend that Maria just take everything slowly, when she heard…

“Yo, Liz.” A voice called out from a ways behind them and the girls turned around to see who it was.

“Tess, how can you be here?” Maria cried out.

“No, Maria, that’s not Tess, that’s Ava, her Dupe, remember?” Liz said, as she stepped forward to hug her.

“Oh yeah; hey Ava, what are you doing here?” Maria asked, warily.

“Got somthin’ to tell yous about.” Ava said. “Where’s Max at?”

“Um, I’m not sure, but I can call him.” Liz offered, as she pulled out her cell-phone and pushed the speed-dial.

“Hey Max it’s…” Liz turned away from the other two a little and blushed. “Yeah, I had a great time yesterday too…Um, Max…Ava just showed up…” Liz listened for a moment.

“Yeah, she says that there is something that she needs to tell us about…okay see you there in just a few minutes…you’ll call…? Okay, bye…I love you too.” Liz hung up with a sweet smile on her face.

“Lizzy?” Maria asked, breaking into her friend’s thoughts.

“Oh, um, Max said that we should all meet at Michael’s; he’ll call Isabel and Michael is still there.”

The girls walked back to the DeLuca residence and got into the red Jetta to drive over to Michael’s apartment. Max was waiting on the stoop, out front, when they drove up.

“Hey Max, look who we found?” Liz said, as she tip-toed up to him for a quick kiss, one arm slung around his neck.

“Hey Ava.” Max finally greeted the girl, after finishing his kiss with Liz.

“Hey Max; there’s somethin’ yous need to know.”

“Let’s go inside, then.” Max said, gesturing for the young ladies to go first, as he held the door open for them.

“Hey Isabel, Michael.” Liz greeted her friends, as she walked through Michael’s open door.

“What’s going on?” Michael asked when he saw Ava come in. “Rath and Lonnie aren’t with you, are they?”

“Na, but they are what I got to tell yous guys about.” Ava said, looking around. “Nice crib.”

“Uh, thanks.” Michael answered.

“Where’s Tess and that other kid…Alex?” Ava asked.

No one wanted to tell her what had happened since the last time she had been in Roswell; they were all glancing around nervously, or down at their toes.

“Max?” Ava asked.

“Um, well…Alex is…dead…” Max started.

“Your homicidal duplicate killed him.” Maria said, with venom in her voice.

“And Tess is…not here anymore…” Max tried to continue.

“Yeah, she took the Granolith and flew home, last spring.” Michael said, angrily.

“Taking Max’s unborn son with her.” Isabel said.

“HUH?” Ava yelled, shocked. “Tess is on Antar? No way!”

“After she found out she was pregnant, the baby started to get really sick; he couldn’t handle the atmosphere.” Max started.

“Then we found out that Tess had made Alex translate the Destiny book…before he overdosed on too many mind-warps and died.” Isabel said, as tears gathered in her eyes.

“The book gave instructions how to use the Granolith, so we were all going to go…only I couldn’t leave Maria…” Michael said and then looked over at his kind-of-ex-girlfriend, regretfully.

“But we found out that Tess had been mind-warping Alex and Kyle…and that she had killed Alex, so Kyle, Maria and I rushed out to the pod-chamber and stopped them from going with Tess.” Liz said.

“Did you know about Nascedo’s plan to turn us over to Kivar, once we reached Antar?” Michael asked, menacingly.

“Nah, that Nascedo-dude wasn’t our protector.” Ava said. “But I can see a shape-shifter knifin’ you ina back; our protector showed us wha’ he thought we needed and then left us in those stinkin’ sewers, when we was eleven.”

Everyone nodded their acceptance and understanding.

“So Ava, where have you been all this time and what brought you back here?” Max asked.

“After I booked outa here, last time, I just moved around a lot; wanted to see more of this rock than its sewers, ya know?”

“Plus, I bet you didn’t want to return to New York and Rath and Lonnie.” Michael pointed out.

“Yeah, ya got it.” Ava mumbled. “But then I gotta thinkin’ that I should go keep an eye on ‘em…without them knowin’ I was, ya know?” Everyone nodded and felt their respect for this quiet Dupe, rise.

“I’d sneak into the crib and check out their vibes, ya know, to see what was happenin’ and stuff. That’s how I foun’ out that…Kivar talked to ‘em.”

“What?” Almost everyone yelled at once.

“When did this happen; what did Kivar want with Rath and Lonnie?” Michael asked.

“Just a few weeks ago, but I don’ know what he wanted; had somthin’ to do with you guys. That’s why I came. You ain’t seen nothing, or no one, has you?”

“This happened a few weeks ago?” Isabel asked. “That would be right after my wedding, where Kivar Showed Up!”

“The Man showed up? Like, he dream-walked you?”

“Well, yeah, he did that first, but then he possessed some poor guy and came to my wedding and Danced With Me!” Isabel exclaimed. “Then he followed my husband, Jesse and I to our honeymoon and tried to get ‘Velondra’ to go back to Antar with him.”

Ava looked really troubled at that.

“Kivar has some sort of new transport beam, which makes it easy for him to possess a human for a long period of time and retain his powers as well.” Max explained.

“Wicked.” Ava responded, still troubled. “But this stuff happenin’ with Kivar don’t make no sense. Why would the man come here, if he’s got Tess and…her kid?”

“He wants all of us dead.” Michael said, emphatically.

“Well, yeah, but…” Ava shook her head. “One of yous guys needs to show me what’s goin’ on; connect wi’ me.”

“I will.” Isabel said, after a pause.

“Cool.” Ava said.

The two girls moved until they stood two feet from one another.

“You know the drill; keep cool, breath deep” Ava said in her soft voice, as she brought both hands up and placed them over Isabel’s ears.

** FLASH **

Max crying by the spilled trash cans…

“Tess is pregnant…our baby is dying; he can’t survive in Earth’s atmosphere.”

** FLASH **

“You have been the best parents ever.” Max and Isabel say into the video camera.

** FLASH **

“I’m staying.” Michael said.

** FLASH **

“Tess killed Alex.” Liz said.

** FLASH **

The Granolith breaking out of its rocky hiding-place, straight as an arrow…but then its trajectory faltered and it started to cork-screw…

** FLASH **

“My son has been born, he’s in trouble; he tried to contact me.” Max told the others, still cold and wet after almost drowning in the lake.

** FLASH **

“Max the ship…it’s a lemon; it crashed, that’s why we’re stuck here.” Isabel said.

** FLASH **

Kivar; dream-walking Isabel and then dancing with her, at her wedding.

** FLASH **

Kivar showing up during Isabel’s honeymoon and then Isabel throwing Kivar into his transporter beam.

** FLASH **

“Daddy.” Samuel said to Max.

** FLASH **

Isabel dream-walking Samuel and his parents…and Samuel turning his head to look directly at Isabel.


“Uh Max…I don’ think Tess was pregnant with your kid…”

TBC Feedback Please! All parts to this story will be posted on the Repost Board. Thank you, jane.

[ edited 12time(s), last at 3-Mar-2002 2:19:43 PM ]
posted on 23-Jan-2002 4:16:42 PM by jane
Please try reading my story, I think you'll like it if you give it a chance! Hope you do anyway!

posted on 24-Jan-2002 7:01:42 AM by jane
I will post part 2 tomorrow, Friday. Thank you for your Great feedback!

Welcome anyone who wants to see S3 fixed!

Give this story a try! I have most of it written and will be posting frequently!

posted on 25-Jan-2002 7:12:25 AM by jane
Title: What Is Max Hiding? Category: M/L and everyone else.
Author: jane E-mail: illta1985⊕
Disclaimer: They are not mine (mores the pity!). The characters of Roswell belong to Melinda Metz, UPN, Jason Katims
and all the wonderful people who we all love for starting this fabulous series (but who we are frustrated with, for messing with the beautiful, 1st season story line!). No infringement or disrespect is intended. I’m just borrowing them!
I want to thank my friends and excellent betas, Ladylou and deraZor for All of their Help! You two ladies are the Best! Thanks again! Love, jane

Summary: This is my attempt to Fix S3, with the focus on Mr. Evans’ search for the truth about his son, Max. This story starts at the end of “Samuel Rising”, the Christmas episode. Hope you enjoy, please let me know! ~jane

***Welcome new readers and old friends! Thank you So much for your Wonderful feedback! Hope you enjoy this new part! Love, jane***

What Is Max Hiding? Part 2

Kivar withdrew his probing mind from the young Earth boy, Samuel and laughed heartily. He had greatly enjoyed toying with Zan, now named Max Evans’ mind.

“Tess what fun this game of yours is; keeping Zan off balance with worry about his son!” Kivar said out loud, although no one else was in the room with him.

Kivar left his quarters and walked towards a part of the Palace grounds where an elite unit of soldiers was being trained.

“The men are ready, Kivar.” Nicholas informed his leader, before he could request a status report.

“Good. You have made excellent progress in training them, ever since I recalled you from Earth.” Kivar remarked and Nicholas gave a small bow.

“Since all of our other Skins on Earth were killed, there was little reason for me to stay, especially after you perfected our transporter device.” Nicholas said.

“Yes, we have been able to train more efficiently and more comfortably here on Antar and can now just transport the troops we need to Earth, when the time comes.” Kivar agreed.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Mr. Evans had to hold the door open to the UFO Center and allow at least a dozen tourists to exit the building before he could enter and walk down the stairs. He grumbled silently about having to pay the entrance fee, just so he could come in and speak to Max’s boss.

“Ah, Mr. Davis, there you are; could I speak to you for a few minutes, please?” Phillip asked when he found Brody as he headed towards his office.

“Mr. Evans, Merry Christmas!” Brody greeted Max’s father and the two men shook hands. “What did you need to speak to me about?”

“I wanted to ask you a few questions about Max.”

“Oh?” Brody asked noncommittally.

“Yes; could you tell me if Max is still working here?”

“Why don’t you ask Max?” Brody asked, evasively.

“Ah well, I guess he hasn’t told you that he has moved out of our home and his mother and I don’t get to see him as often as we would like. Mrs. Evans and I were worried about him, since he refuses to take any money from us.” Mr. Evans wove the half-truth easily.

“Max has moved out; but he is still in high school, isn’t he? Hmm, maybe I’ll have to raise his salary a bit.” Brody remarked.

“So Max is still working for you; how many hours a week would you say?”

“Yes he still works here, but his hours vary.” Brody answered, becoming wary.

“Has Max missed any of the times he was scheduled to work?”

“No.” Brody answered, not thinking beyond the exact wording of the question, so he didn’t mention the days which Max had requested to take off from work.

“You are saying that Max hasn’t missed any of his scheduled work times, at all? What about earlier this fall…”

“Oh I see what you’re asking.” Brody said, finally understanding what Mr. Evans was asking. “He did ask for some time off earlier, but he hasn’t actually missed any time he was scheduled to work.” Brody said helpfully.

“Did Max tell you why he needed to take time off?” Mr. Evans asked.

“Oh you know, because he was getting behind in his school work or that he was going to visit his aunt, stuff like that.” Brody said, innocently.

“Ah, I see; good. Thank you for you help, Mr. Davis.”

“Glad I could help.” Brody said as both men shook hands and Mr. Evans walked off.

‘Well that was of no help. Obviously, Max is lying to his boss as well.’ Mr. Evans thought to himself as he walked up the stairs and out the doors.

‘Should I have mentioned the real reason I think that Max disappears sometimes; that the aliens have come back and abducted him again, as they have me? Abduction would certainly explain some of the mood swings Max has been going through, lately…No, Max may not have told his father about his abduction. It’s difficult for other people to understand if they haven’t been through the same thing. Maybe I’ll try to get Max to tell me more about his original abduction, than he did when we first met. Now that he knows me better, maybe he’ll trust me with the rest of his experience. I think that it would be helpful to Max if he could talk about it.’ Brody decided before he went into his office.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Meanwhile, while she waited for her husband to return, Mrs. Evans decided to watch home videos, especially the one of when Max was little and he seemingly healed a bird.

“Why are you watching that video again?” Phillip asked his wife, after he came in through the front door. “You’ve seen it dozens of times, honey.”

“I’m just so troubled about Max and I’m worried that we’re going to lose him if we continue to push for answers, Phillip. If he finds out that you’ve hired a private investigator he may do more than move out of the house, he may run and never come back.”

“Diane, I can’t just stand by and watch my son get deeper and deeper into trouble without trying to help him; but since he won’t tell me Anything, I’ve been forced to hire the P.I.”

“Phillip, you weren’t here that time when we had the kitchen fire and Max somehow put it out…”

“You’ve told me about it…” Phillip interrupted.

“But you weren’t Here when it happened. You didn’t see the look on Max’s face; the anguish, when I tried to get him to talk to me, when he threatened to leave us if I kept asking for answers. Now he has left us, Phillip; do you Want to lose him for good, this time?”

“NO! But I…”

“You had better be careful.” Diane warned.

“I need to show you something.” Phillip walked over to the kitchen table and picked up the small box he had brought home with him and placed it on the sofa cushion next to Diane, before sitting down himself. “Take a look at these; the P.I. just found them.” Phillip said as he opened up the box for her to see.

“What are all these objects, Phil?” Diane asked, picking up one of the small, dark-yellow balls and one of the blue orbs.

“I don’t know, but Max and Michael buried them out in the desert. Take a look at the book.” Phillip instructed and Diane did so, leafing through the pages.

“What are all of these symbols?” She turned another page. “Why, these are pictures of the kids! This is just how they looked when we found Max and Isabel, out in the desert and these…look just as they did a couple of years ago. What is this book that has their pictures stamped into its metal pages?”

“I don’t know, but these just prove that our kids are both into something very strange.” Phillip said and Diane nodded her head, sadly.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“Uh Max…I don’ think Tess was pregnant with your kid…”

“WHAT?” Everyone yelled and advanced on Ava.

“Hey guys, back off.” Liz spoke up. “Ava, what do you mean; you don’t think that Tess was pregnant with Max’s son?”

“Stuff I saw when I connected with Isabel and stuff you told me.” Ava said.

“Like what stuff?” Michael asked impatiently.

‘Could it be true?’ Max wondered, as he remained totally still and silent, but then he turned his head when he felt Liz come up beside him and take his hand in her small one.

“You said that the baby was hurtin’ ‘cause the air was makin’ it sick?”

“Yes, I saw it with my own eyes.” Max said, feeling the desperation and anguish at being unable to help or save his son. Ava shook her head, dismissing that.

“But if you two made it, it would be half Antarian and half Human; like yous twos an’ the air don’t make you sick, so the air ain’t gonna make the kid sick; ‘specially when it’s inside Tess.”

“Oh yeah, I remember some of that from sex ed. class.” Liz remarked.

“So…you think Tess mind-warped me into thinking that our child was in distress, so that we would all go home?” Max asked.

“Think she mind-warped you ‘bout da whole baby thing; don’t think there was a kid at all.” Ava said.

“What else makes you think that?” Isabel asked.

“Way the Granolith cork-screwed after it took off; fail-safe musta kicked in and stopped the Granolith from goin’ too far.” Ava said.

“Huh? Cork-screw, what cork-screw? What fail-safe?” Michael asked.

“Isabel saw as how the Granolith took off; flyin’ straight an’nen it jus’ started to cork-screw, like maybe it ain’t gonna make it ta outer space .” Ava explained. “Ain’t that what you saw?”

“Well, now that you mention it, yeah that is what happened.” Maria said, thoughtfully and Michael nodded.

“Yeah I thought that looked weird, but then I forgot about it.” Michael said.

“It never occurred to me that a trajectory like that would have meant anything.” Isabel said.

“So do you think the Granolith crashed back to Earth with Tess inside…and what is the fail-safe you mentioned?” Max asked.

“Don’ know what happen’ to the Granolith; did ya hear about a crash, back then?” Ava asked and everyone shook their heads.

“I could check the computers at the UFO Center.” Max mentioned.

“Cool; didn’ Nascedo tell you nothin’ ‘bout the Granolith?” Ava asked, disgusted by their lack of training.

“Nascedo didn’t teach us much about anything.” Michael said.

“Granolith only work for da King…or his kid…” Ava explained, looking directly at Max.

“You mean in order for the Granolith to take any of us back to Antar, I…or my child had to be on board? I wonder why Tess didn’t know that much at least?” Max wondered. Ava shrugged.

“She may have; that’s probably why she hung onto the act that she was pregnant; to make sure that you went with her.” Isabel said and Max nodded.

“But at the last minute, we found out what she had done and in her anxiousness to get away from us, from me, she let the Granolith take her. Tess may have even forgotten, if she ever knew, about the fail-safe because she made one last shot at me. I was so angry; I was ready to kill her and she asked me if I wanted to kill my son too.”

“Low blow, especially if she knew she wasn’t pregnant.” Michael said.

“She didn’t wanna die.” Ava shrugged.

“Yeah, guess not, but how do we find out the truth?” Max asked.

“Might be able to see, if I connect with you.” Ava suggested and Max hesitated.

“Oh-kay.” Max agreed after a moment.

Ava braced herself to go into a mind she figured would be much like Zan’s; the man she had loved, but who had not loved her in return. She knew that Liz loved Max; did he love her in return?

TBC Feedback Please! All parts to this story are being posted on the Repost Board. Thank you, jane.

posted on 27-Jan-2002 7:07:33 AM by jane
Title: What Is Max Hiding? Category: M/L and everyone else.
Author: jane E-mail: illta1985⊕
Disclaimer: They are not mine (mores the pity!). The characters of Roswell belong to Melinda Metz, UPN, Jason Katims
and all the wonderful people who we all love for starting this fabulous series (but who we are frustrated with, for messing with the beautiful, 1st season story line!). No infringement or disrespect is intended. I’m just borrowing them!
I want to thank my friends and excellent betas, Ladylou and deraZor for All of their Help! You two ladies are the Best! Thanks again! Love, jane

Summary: This is my attempt to Fix S3, with the focus on Mr. Evans’ search for the truth about his son, Max. This story starts at the end of “Samuel Rising”, the Christmas episode. Hope you enjoy, please let me know! ~jane

Klaatu42 Wait and see what Max tells Brody! As to Brody remembering New York, I’ve already written that story! It’s called…”Brody Remembers, Roswell After New York”! You can find it and my other three stories on the Repost Board. (There are links to all four on the Work by author board) I hope (all of) you will check it out! ~jane

What Is Max Hiding? Part 3

“You’ve had me training these Skins, but what’s your plan, Kivar?” Nicholas asked.

“I want Max Evans take alive, so that I can execute him here on Antar, myself.”

“What about the others?” Nicholas asked. “Rath, now known as Michael Guerin and the lovely Valondra, known as Isabel Evans.”

“I know her name already.” Kivar reminded Nicholas. “I will give ‘Isabel’ one more chance to turn on her royal brother, but after she betrayed me, back on Earth, I may have her executed anyway, after I make her watch the other two die.” Kivar chuckled.

“And the Dupes; what about them? We’ve been unable to locate that little mouse, Ava.” Nicholas asked.

“Get them to help us capture the three remaining Royals and Ava…and I’ll give them a swift, painless execution after the others are dead. I want every last member of the Hybrid eight out of my way, permanently.” Both men laughed menacingly.

“Your orders for the men, sir?” Nicholas asked a moment later.

“They will be transported to Earth, where they will observe Max Evans and his group; find out who’s close to him. Then when I give the word, they will be taken and held as ransom until Max gives himself up.”

“Very good, sir.” Nicholas grinned.

The three remaining Royals would be virtually powerless without Tess to complete their four-square and Nicholas knew that they were really just stupid teenagers, who didn’t know how to use their own powers. This should be a cake-walk.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Ava stared apprehensively at Max and then tried to clear her mind.

“You knows the drill; keep cool, breath deep .” Ava instructed, as she brought her hands up to cover his ears and make the connection.

** Flash **

Max and Tess sitting on Max’s bed with candles in between them. Tess is ‘helping’ Max ‘remember’ his former life.

** Flash **

Max and Tess making love at the observatory.

** Flash **

Max ‘connecting’ with a pregnant Tess and feeling the distress of his unborn son.

** End Flashes **

“Max, you gotta totally clear your head; don’ give me nothin’, you just gotta let me in. I can feel a mind-warp but I gotta push past it.” Max nodded and tried to totally relax.

“Okay the time, when yous two was sittin’ on your bed with candles between you…a really dumb thing ta do, ya know; ya coulda knocked one over an’ burned your bed up. …So sure, you loved ta swim in that lake, but that was a total mind-warp by Tess.” Ava told Max. “That time at the Prom, when ya remembered yur first kiss…it did happen but it was all a part o’ her plan; it weren’t the totally-awesome kiss Tess made ya think it was.” Ava had done a lot of memory retrieval herself and knew the unhappy truth about their engagement; but she was leery of telling Max everything.

“But once Larek told me that I was very attracted to…Tess and that he introduced us…and that she was attracted to me.” Max said, confused and hurt.

“He did and you was…Max, geez this is embarrassin’ ‘cause, like, I’m from the first Ava too, ya know, but…you only sniffed after her ‘cause Ava was really good at showin’ ya only what she wanted ya to see. She started comin’ onto ya the first time she met ya ‘cause she really, really wanted to be Queen with you as King, but under her thumb. She…made sure your old man picked her to be your bride; you know what I mean?” Ava explained.

“It was all a cold-blooded act to ensure that she became Queen.” Max said sadly, softly. “But you aren’t like that past-Ava you describe or like Tess was.” Max told the gentle Dupe and Ava shrugged modestly. “I almost wonder if you were the one who was supposed to be with us and if Tess was supposed to be with the Dupes; she certainly turned out to be more like Rath and Lonnie than you have.” Ava blushed.

“I think…I would’ve liked that.” Ava said softly. “But le’me connect with you again; there’s still stuff I check out.”

Max relaxed again and Ava went back in.

** Flash **

Tess and Max standing outside an observatory.

“I was always determined to become Queen, I was certain that I could seduce you into doing anything I wanted you to do and become the real power behind your reign as King.” Tess said to a mind-warped Max before continuing to say with obsessive determination. “That was what I was certain I could do, when I came to Roswell, with a mind-warp here a little control there...” Tess ran her hand over Max’s face as he just continued to stand there, staring straight ahead. “But I could never break through your stupid puppy-love for that little brown mouse, Liz Parker; and she was always interfering, always there, drawing you away from me, so we’re going to take this next step by continuing the mind-warp you’re under now; not as much fun but…” Then Tess became angry. “I was going to be your wife, Max; your wife and Queen! And after I’m through with you, you’ll be begging me to marry you…And to return to Antar…after I make all of you fools believe that I was able to translate the Destiny book. And even if I can’t convince Kivar that you are under my control and he executes the three of you, I will still be pregnant with Antar’s future king and safe, as Nascedo and Kivar bargained forty years ago; I will be the Queen Mother and raise our son to the kind of king you never could be. Now, follow me inside.” Tess ordered and they walked into the closed observatory.

Tess had made sure that they wouldn’t be disturbed, as she undressed herself and then Max. When seeing her naked body had no effect on him, Tess started to touch him, manipulate him and still Max did not respond, in fact he started to become agitated in spite of the mind-warp. Fearing that he might break out of her control, Tess increased the power and depth of her warp until Max passed out on a platform.

“You’ll remember what I want you to remember and you’ll believe what I tell you to believe.” Tess spat out before settling into the properly suggestive position with Max and waited for dawn.

“Oh Man! Oh No! Oh God!” Max and Ava both cried out, at the same time and Max broke away from the Dupe with his hands out in front of him; horror in his eyes and tears running down his face.

“Max!” Ava and Liz both called out.

“Stay away from me!” Max said, looking panicked at Ava, but reaching out a hand to Liz. “I know you aren’t Tess, but stay away from me for a little while, okay?” Ava nodded and Liz took Max’s hand in both of hers.

“Max?” Liz asked softly.

“Will you come with me? I need to get out of here.” Max said.

“Of course.” Liz said concerned; she could feel Max trembling before they left Michael’s apartment.

“What the hell just happened?” Michael yelled, worried about his friend.

Isabel and Maria were looking on with huge, worried eyes as Ava told them.

“We saw what really happened ‘tween Max and Tess. Let’s just say tha’ they did’nt make love or have sex…or nothin’…” Ava said still gazing at the door Max and Liz had just walked through.

“But Max told us that he and Tess woke up together…naked and that they had had sex. That must have been more than a mind-warp.” Isabel said.

“I’ll check it out some more, bu’ Tess said as how she had been pushin’ Max’s buttons since she came to Roswell, bu’ how she ain’t never broke Max outa his love for Liz, no matta what. Tess already got the Book in En’lish an’ she was gettin’ antsy. She really, Really wanted to go home, so she shadowed Max out ta the ‘servatory, an’ mind-warped him.”

“But if he was mind-warped, couldn’t Tess have made Max do anything she wanted?” Michael asked.

“Didn’ look like it; let’s just say that Max couldn’ perform an’ Tess knocked him out when she tried to make him…you know…bu’ then she jus’ lay down next to him an’ waited for him to come to.”

“And when they woke up naked, Tess told him a crock of bull.” Michael said.

“Oh…no…” Was all Isabel could say from behind hands which covered her face. “Poor Max…” She moaned.

“How would you check this out further?” Maria asked her eyes big and round in shock for her friend as well. She had almost run after them, but realized that Max and Liz needed to talk this out, alone. “Would this have anything to do with those vibes you mentioned earlier? What did you mean by that?”

“I’d check out Tess’ crib or some of her stuff, if yous guys kept any of it. B’sides mind-warping, which I ain’t any good at, ‘cause I don’t hardly use it, I can pick up on feelings an’ vibes, or tell wha’ happen’ in a place, if I touch somethin’ someone’s touched.”

“Like precognition?” Isabel asked.

“Kinda.” Ava said. “Only mostly I see the past. Could one of yous show me where Tess’ crib was?”

“I can take you.” Isabel offered.

“Cool; can we go now?”

“Uh, sure.” Isabel said. “Michael, I don’t know if you and Maria should wait here for Max and Liz to return, or what.”

“We’ll wait here a while.” Michael said, eager to spend time with Maria, even if they just talked as they had the other day.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Outside, Max and Liz walked hand in hand, over to a nearby park. Neither of them said anything until they found a secluded bench to sit on. Liz didn’t say anything, but she brought up her hand to Max’s cheek and wiped away his tears, which had slowed down some. Max found himself leaning into her healing touch, as he drew strength from her loving presence. Liz gently rubbed her thumb over his lips and Max kissed her digit, letting his tongue peek out, to taste her sweet skin. They both groaned a little at the sensations they were feeling and then leaned their foreheads together.

“Can I tell you…what happened; what really happened…I don’t want to burden…”

“Max, listening to something you Need to say will Never be a burden.” Liz assured him and was rewarded by a quick brush of his lips on hers.

“I had been driving out to the observatory every once in a while, to be alone, but that night Tess found me there. She was getting desperate to go home by then. I can sense that now. She had a translation of the Destiny book and had killed Alex to get it. She was warping Kyle, Amy DeLuca…and me from time to time. It was wearing her down. She was a great deal stronger than she let us think she was, but still her powers and her patience were running low. Anyway, she came on all sweet and sexy, talking about how close we had been in our past lives; that’s what she was always talking about, our past lives. I had really wanted to be alone and it irritated me that she had followed me out to the observatory. She got a bit of her own medicine back that night. My memory is still confused between what happened and what Tess made me think happened, but I know that I have been acting very badly this past year; ordering everyone around, but I think that came from my sub-conscious, as it tried to fight Tess’ mind-control…and recently I have been so worried about this non-existent son of mine. Man…Tess really knew what she was doing when she set me up with that; a fetus, struggling to survive and already connected to me; knowing who I was. Then after she left; that call from her, pretending to be our child, in trouble and frightened; Tess really pulled out all of the stops. She’s alive somewhere and when I get my hands on her…”

“When We get our hands on her.” Liz corrected, determinably. “But Max…what happened…between the two of you that night…can you…tell me?” Liz asked.

“When I got irritated with her, Tess mind-warped me…got my clothes off and…” Max swallowed and one tear slid down his cheek. “…and when I didn’t respond to her…naked body…she tried to excite me by…touching me…but that didn’t work either…you know what I mean?”

Max had been looking down the whole time he was telling Liz this; keeping his eyes fixed on the top button of her blouse. Now he raised his eyes up to hers’ and saw raw emotions seeping out of them; love, sorrow, empathy and tears…for him and what he had gone through at the hands of Tess. Liz brought up one of her hands and stroked over his face; his forehead, down the side of his cheek, lightly touching and tentative.

“When that didn’t work, she pushed harder at my mind, until I collapsed and after that, I guess she just lay down by me and waited for me to wake up. She had planted those false memories in my head; that we had had sex and I fell for it when I woke up.”

“What else could you have done, Max; the evidence was pretty clear cut.” Liz said.

“I am just So glad that I did not cheat on you with Tess.” Max said fervently, leaning his head against Liz’s.

“She may have had control of your mind, Max but your body knew that it didn’t want to…be touched…by Tess.” Liz started to bring her hand up to stroke it through his hair, but then hesitated. “Maybe you won’t want to be…touched by…anyone…for a while.” Liz whispered miserably, not knowing what would be helpful to Max and what might hurt him after what he had been through.

“Liz, what happened to me only made me more aware of how important it is, to choose the right person to…to take that next, important step with. So that when she…touches me and I touch her…it’s perfect for both of us.” Max looked down for a second, away from Liz’s gorgeous, brown eyes, then back up again and blushed a little. “Liz, when the time is perfect to take that next step…it is you I want to be there with me…touching me…as I touch you…it always has been, I love you. But I know that you told Future Max that you weren’t ready for that…”

“Max, I love you too, so much…and I want it to be you, for my first time too…I know you will be the only one who can…excite me…that way, but…”

“But everything is so uncertain right now.” Max finished for her, understanding even better now, what she meant.

“But someday…when things aren’t so crazy, we’ll find the perfect time and place to make love together…” Liz said, determined that that day would come…and soon; she would help Max make that day possible.

“But until that day comes, maybe we can content ourselves with a kiss or two!” Max grinned as he cupped Liz’s beloved face in his large hands.

“Just a kiss or two…at a time…every few minutes!” Liz clarified as they moved in together to gently caress each other with lips and gentle fingers.

“We’ll get through all of this as long as we’re together.” Max said between kisses.

“Mmmm together.” Liz agreed as she tightened her arms around Max’s strong neck and she felt his arms tighten around her waist, drawing her even closer to his body…a body which was already reacting to her closeness and love.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Isabel drove Ava over to the Valenty’s house, to introduce her to Kyle and his father and to see what she could pick up on, from Tess’ belongings. She loved her red mustang convertible, which had been one of Jesse’s first gifts to her. It was a couple of years old, but she still loved it and had named it Rosita.

“Why don’t you stand to the side for a moment, Ava; until I have a chance to speak to Kyle or his father first. They were badly hurt by Tess, in the end.”

“Sure, no prob.” Ava said as Isabel rang the doorbell.

“Hi Kyle, can I talk to you a minute?”

“Hey Isabel, what do you need?”

“Um, well did we ever tell you that the four of us; Max, Michael, Tess and I have a set of duplicates and that the Thanksgiving before last, they drove out here to get Max to go back to New York with them…only Rath and Lonnie; that’s Michael and my duplicates had already killed Zan, Max’s dupe, before they came here.”

“Um yeah, I think Liz told me a little bit about that.” Kyle said.

“Okay, good. While Rath and Lonnie are pretty bad characters; Tess’ dupe is really quite sweet and nice. She tried to save Zan, but wasn’t able to and then she stayed here in Roswell when Tess and Max went to New York with the other two. It was Ava…” Isabel gently pulled the girl to join her in front of Kyle and indicated with a nod, who she was. “…who told Liz that she had been changed when Max healed her and got her to try and save Max; without Ava, Max would be dead.”

“Um, nice to meet you.” Kyle said to a quiet Ava. “What is she doing here and what do you want from me?”

“Ava has been keeping an eye on Rath and Lonnie in New York. They want to kill her too, because she has never wanted anything to do with their plans, so it was very dangerous for her to go back to New York and watch them. She came here to warn us that Kivar has contacted Rath and Lonnie…Ava also told us that Tess was Not pregnant with Max’s son, when she left in the Granolith.” Isabel dropped her bomb.

“WHAT?” Kyle yelled and Ava winced, stepping back a step. Kyle saw this and grimaced. “Sorry, what makes you think that Max didn’t have sex with Tess?” Kyle asked in a gentler voice, as he stepped back and indicated that the two girls should come inside.

“I’ve seen stuff an’ been told stuff that means Tess couldna’ been carryin’ Max’s kid.” Ava said softly, looking shyly at the cute guy named Kyle.

“Ava was hoping to see some of Tess’ belongings; she’s precognitive and can get images or information from objects she holds.” Isabel explained.

“Um well, okay. Tess’ stuff is in the garage, but she stayed in my room while she was here; would it help you to go in there too? Maybe you’d feel her vibes in there.” Kyle asked.

“Maybe I can feel her vibes in’ere, but I’ll feel your vibes too.” Ava warned.

“Okay, my room is this way.” Kyle said as he guided Ava and Isabel to his room.

“Le’me go in alone, I can pick up more vibes tha’ way.” Ava said and Kyle nodded, motioning the tiny, girl into his room and shut the door.

Ava walked into the small, wood-paneled room and opened her senses to the vibes and memories which had been absorbed by the objects in the room. At first the vibes were confusing, Kyle’s-before-he-knew-about-Max, then Tess’, then Kyle’s-after-Tess. Ava sensed the sports and girl-oriented feelings of Kyle’s oldest memories. An eyebrow rose when she sensed a few faint Liz-oriented memories. Then she sensed Kyle’s confusion, worry and almost horror at having been saved by an alien. A large percentage of those emotions were centered on whether or not he had been “changed” by Max as Liz had been. Ava smiled a little when she picked up on some of the strange dreams Kyle had had, but then the smile disappeared when Tess’ vibes started to filter in. Everything she had done was planned; every lie, every manipulation had been geared towards achieving her ultimate plan, to go home to Antar.

‘Your plans didn’ work, did they Tess? If you’re alive at all, you’re on Earth, not Antar, I know it.’ Ava thought to herself, grimly.

On top of Tess’ occupancy of the room, Ava finally sensed Kyle’s most recent memories. Feelings of betrayal from when he had learned about Tess’ true nature covered his earlier feelings of attraction to her and the realization of his brotherly feelings for her.

‘Poor shmuck.’ Ava thought as she opened the door to leave the room and found Isabel, the cute shmuck and his father, who had come in while she had been inside, waiting out in the hall.

“Did you find anything?” Isabel asked.

“Everythin’ Tess did was a lie.” Ava told them. “She couldn’ get near Max’s heart, so she put ideas ‘bout their past lives together into Max’s head.” Ava looked directly at Kyle and his father. “She played with your feelings for fun. Once she got the Book in En’lish she killed Alex an’ started her last plan. An’ when Max wouldn’ give her a kid, Tess faked it anyway to make yous three return to Antar, figurin’ she could get pregnant after she handed yous three over to Kivar…before he killed you.”

“Oh man.” Isabel groaned.

“Would looking at Tess’ belongings help you any?” Jim, who had been told what was going on, asked and Ava shrugged.

“Couldn’t hurt.”

“The boxes are out in the garage.” Kyle said and all four of them trooped out to the garage.

Ava sifted through Tess’ things, but only received the same images and soon after she received an invitation to stay with the Valenti’s, Isabel left to drive to her new home and husband. She tried to bury her troubled thoughts, as she plastered a happy smile on her face and walked through the front door of their apartment.

TBC Feedback Please! All parts to this story are being posted on the Repost Board. Thank you, jane.

posted on 28-Jan-2002 7:14:45 AM by jane
Shamelessly bumping my own story!
posted on 28-Jan-2002 7:28:45 PM by jane
***Thank you so much for your Wonderful feedback! You all make my day! Love, jane***

What Is Max Hiding? Part 4

Kivar spoke to the elite trope of men lined up on the Palace grounds a while later that day.

“Soldiers, you know what your mission is; you are to blend in with the Humans and watch the Royal Three. Who are they close to, who do they care about. Then, position yourselves so that when I give you the word, you can take those puny Humans hostage. Nicholas, activate the transporter.”

Nicholas did so and the men, all wearing their new husks, saluted Kivar and one by one stepped into the alien device and disappeared. The Skins reappeared in an abandoned lot, behind an old building, near the center of town. They spread out to keep an eye on the three royal teens.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“Hey Jim, it’s Philip Evans, how are you?” Philip called the former Sheriff later that day.

“Fine, Philip, what can I do for you?”

“I was wondering if Kyle is there with you. I would really like to get Tess Harding’s address and phone number from him. I’m anxious to speak to her.”

“Oh man, Philip, I’m sorry I forgot to call you back. I asked Kyle to find Tess’ information for you, but he finally told me the other day that he has lost it; he can’t find it anywhere. We’re hoping now that Tess will contact us, so that we’ll know that she’s doing okay.” Jim lied and Philip swore under his breath.

“Um, okay Jim; I’m sorry to hear that. If you hear from Tess, will you let me know, please?” Philip asked. ‘Yeah sure; you’ll never hear from her or let me know.” He thought to himself. ‘I know whose side you’re on, now.’

“Uh sure, we’ll be glad to let you know if Tess ever contacts us, Philip.” Jim said, rolling his eyes, on his end of the phone-line and they each hung up.

‘Why would the Sheriff, okay the former Sheriff help Max and whatever he’s up to? What is his part in all of this?’ Phillip wondered as he dialed his P.I.’s phone number.

“Hey, it’s Philip Evans. I forgot to ask you if you have had any luck tracking down Tess Harding? No luck, huh? Well keep trying will you? All right, thanks. Good night.” Phillip hung up his phone and took another sip of his drink. What should be his next step?

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

December 27th

Max was alone the next morning at Michael’s apartment because Michael was working the breakfast shift at the Crashdown. He was looking over his work schedule at the UFO Center and Liz’s schedule at the Crashdown. If he didn’t know better, Jeff Parker had spoken to Brody Davis and had him schedule Max to work any time Liz wasn’t working at her family’s café and Jeff had scheduled his daughter to work any time Max was off, over the school holiday.

‘We’ll hardly have any time to be together, even though we have to sneak around behind Mr. Parker’s back.’ Max thought, glumly. ‘Well now that Ava is here and staying with the Valentis, since Kyle voluntarily gave up his room again, over Ava’s protests, the four of us, Izzy, Michael, Ava and I will want to spend some time together. It’s clear that the Dupe’s protector taught them a lot before he abandoned them; plus life and necessity taught them even more and Ava not so gently told us that we have a “hell of a lot to learn”. I guess she’s right; it’ll be interesting to see what she can teach us when we get together tomorrow night.’

Just then someone knocked on the apartment door, breaking into Max’s thoughts. When he opened the door he was surprised to not only see his mother, but the gaily wrapped gifts she carried in her hands.

“Mom…um…what are you doing here?” Max asked.

“I’m bringing you your Christmas presents, honey; may I come in, please?”

“Um sure, Mom.” Max said as he let her in and then quickly looked around the room to see if any of Michael’s clothing was lying around and saw that the apartment was relatively clean for a change. Max motioned Diane over to a seat and sat down near her. “Mom it was so nice of you to bring these gifts over to me, but you didn’t have to do that…I wasn’t really…expecting to get…anything this year.” Max said softly, looking down at his clasped hands.

“You are our son, Max and we love you; of course we bought you Christmas presents…and none of them have coal in them!” Diane tried to joke. “I wanted to thank you for this lovely scarf.” Diane said, smoothing the soft knit which was loosely wound around her neck. “It feels so luxurious and warm; and your dad will look very distinguished when he wears those ties you gave him, but they must have cost a lot, you shouldn’t have spent so much of your hard-earned money.”

“You’re welcome, Mom, I just wanted to give each of you a little something for Christmas so don’t worry, they weren’t that expensive.” Max said.

“Why didn’t you take your presents from under the tree when you brought ours?” Diane asked.

“I um…didn’t think, to look under the tree, Mom; what with my moving out and Dad being angry with me…” Max dropped his eyes again in discomfort.

“Yes there is some anger there.” Diane confirmed, honestly. “But mostly your dad…both of us are just very worried about you; you seem to have changed so much over the last two years and done some pretty questionable things…But I don’t want to get into all of that right now; why don’t you open your presents?” Diane suggested and Max complied. He unwrapped a couple pairs of jeans, some shirts and sweaters.

“Wow Mom, these are great!” Max enthused politely and then got up to give his mom a hug and a kiss on the cheek. “I’ve seen Isabel wearing one of the dresses you gave her; I’m glad that you were able to spend some time with her and Jesse.”

“Yes, Isabel had us over for dinner, Christmas night…I wish you could have been there too, Max; then we would have been one big, happy family.” Diane said.

“Mom, I’m sorry, but I don’t think having Dad and I in the same room together would have been a great idea right now.” Diane nodded in resignation.

“I guess so honey; I’m just worried about my two Evans men; you and whatever you’re up to and your father and his obsession in finding out about whatever you’re up too…he and that P.I. he’s hired.”

Any protest about his actions, which Max was about to make, froze on his tongue, as Diane let slip the fact of Philip’s having hired an investigator.

“He’s hired a P.I.?” Max asked. “I’ve seen him with a strange man a couple of times, but I never knew he was a P.I. What’s this guy up to; following me around…oh man, is he taking pictures? Because there were a couple of times Liz and I…”

“I don’t know precisely what this man is doing, but I’m sure that he wouldn’t have taken pictures of something as private as you and Liz…just what were you two doing together? If Jeff Parker finds out…” Diane paused before continuing. “You two weren’t sleeping together were you?”

“Mom, NO!” Max cried, wincing at the implanted memory of he and Tess ‘sleeping together’. “I love Liz and she loves me and sometime in the future we will make love...” Max emphasized the work ‘love’. “…with each other, but we both agree that this is not the right time for that; Liz and I would have just been talking…maybe even kissing, but that is still a very private time between us.” Max explained and Diane nodded.

“I understand your point, Max and I’ll ask your father about it.”

“Um thanks, Mom.” Max said as they both rose from their seats.

“Well I’d better be going, honey; it was good to see you with my own eyes.” Diane said as she leaned in to kiss her handsome son on the cheek. “May I come to see you again?”

“Mom…” Max hesitated. “Yeah sure, I’d like that.”

“I love you, son and I don’t want to lose you; please don’t let your father drive you away, okay?”

“We’ll see, Mom; I love you too.” Mother and son hugged one more time and then Diane left. Max waited until he heard her car drive away before he picked up the phone and dialed the Crashdown.

“Hey Michael, thank goodness you answered the phone and not Mr. Parker.”

“Yeah, he’s not here right now, but he has mentioned to Liz how many ‘wrong numbers’ have been calling the café; I think he suspects that it’s you; better be careful, Maxwell.”

“Well talking about being careful, I think we all will have to be a lot more careful. I just found out that Dad has hired himself a private investigator; he’s been following me all around and maybe even taking pictures.”

“Oh man, Maxwell.” Michael said, easily following Max’s train of thought. “Was the P.I. tailing us when we were out in the desert the other day?”

“I don’t know, Michael, but maybe we should go out and check; what time do you get off?”

“Not until this afternoon; I pulled another shift since the new guy called in sick.”

“And I have to work this afternoon, which means that I’ll have to go out to the desert by myself and see what I can find.”

“Okay Maxwell, but be careful.” Michael warned.

“I will be.” Max assured his friend before they both said good-bye.

After hanging up, Max ran out to his car, very glad that Maria had picked up Michael that morning and started the engine. Thinking that he might be followed, Max took a circuitous route out of town, but if he was being followed, he couldn’t see them. Finally he reached the spot in the desert where he and Michael had buried all of their secret belongings and saw right away that someone had come after them and dug up what they had hidden; leaving half a dozen holes in the sand to show that he had been there. Max pulled out his cell-phone and called Michael first and then Isabel.

“Isabel, someone must have been following Michael and I when we buried all of our stuff out in the desert, because there is nothing but big, empty holes out here now.”

“Who would have been following you, Max? Do you think it was Dad?”

“Kind of; Isabel, Dad has hired a private investigator and that is who I think dug up our stuff.”

“Do you think he gave them to Dad?” Isabel asked, very worried.

“Yeah I think he did, the only thing for us to find out is where Dad has hidden all of our things. Michael and I have already discussed this and we are going to check out Dad’s office and their house tonight.”

“I’m coming too.” Isabel said.

“I’m not sure that’s such a good idea, Is; you don’t want Jesse to wake up and find his new wife missing in the middle of the night.”

“Oh yeah, all right, but you two be careful.” Isabel told her brother.

“We will, bye, Is.” Max said before they hung up.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

When Max arrived at the UFO Center for his shift that afternoon, Brody asked him to come into his office.

“Hey Brody, what’s up?” Max asked.

“Max…I’ve been…kind of worried about you lately; you’ve asked for quite a bit of time off…and that’s okay…I understand that a young man has other things to do, but I was just wondering if there was anything troubling you, anything I could help you with.”

“Uh well, Brody, there’s just the normal teenage boy stuff, you know…” Max hedged.

“But you’re not a normal boy, are you Max?” Brody asked.

‘What?’ Max’s brain screamed. ‘What does he mean by that? Has Brody been talking to my dad?’ Max’s eyes started darting around, looking for something to distract his boss with, so he could get out of there. But meanwhile Brody continued, having no idea of the anxiety he was creating within his friend and employee.

“No one who has been abducted by aliens can ever say that they are truly normal again; right, Max?”

“Huh? Uh no, I guess not.” Max mumbled, seeing where this conversation was going.

“I was just wondering if any of your absences were caused by any alien concerns you might have. Have they made contact with you at all? Is there anything you’d like to share with me about your abduction; get it off of your chest? I think we’ve come to know and trust one another much better than when we first told each other about our history with aliens.” Brody said.

“Brody…has my father come to speak with you at all? Is that what this is all about?” Max asked, cautiously.

“No!” Brody exclaimed and then continued. “Well yes, he did come to speak to me the other day; about whether you had missed any time from work or whether you were still working for me at all…By the way, I’m giving you a five percent raise, starting with your next paycheck; I didn’t know that you had moved out of your parent’s house, Max. But anyway, there wasn’t much I could tell him and he left; but it got me thinking about whether your absences and absent-mindedness lately had anything to do with your abduction or memories from that time. I want to help you, Max; nothing you tell me will ever go beyond the two of us. I know that “normal” people will never understand what you’ve been through, but I do.” Max hesitated, knowing that he would have to tell Brody something.

“Brody, that night I came to your office and we talked…I told you that I had been abducted and held for a couple of days. I didn’t keep my story short and vague because I couldn’t remember anything, like you can’t.” Max couldn’t look directly at Brody as he spoke and so he kept his eyes lowered. “I kept it short because I remember every single thing that they did to me and it hurts so much to remember and to talk about it. The samples they took, the tests they did…the tortures they performed, trying to get information out of me; ‘tell us what we want to know or we’ll slice you open’…” Max stopped talking, swallowing several times as he tried to take deep, calming breaths; his eyes squeezed tightly shut.

“Oh man…Max…” Brody didn’t know what to say, but tentatively reached out a hand and gripped his young friend’s shoulder in support.

“Maybe…maybe I could tell you a little bit at a time, about what happened to me…but for now…” Max broke off, still looking down.

“I understand, Max; really I do. Any way I can help you; you just let me know. I’m here anytime you need an ear to listen, okay? Now…would you rather go home for the day?”

“No I…no, I’d like to work; keep busy.” Max said, looking up gratefully at his boss and friend.

“That we can do, come on…” Brody slapped Max on the back and steered him out of his office.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Late that night, Max and Michael drove out to Mr. Evans’ office.

“I’m not finding anything here, what about you, Maxwell?”

“Me neither.” Max said. “Let’s get out of here and go check Mom and Dad’s house.”

“Wouldn’t it be easier to wait until they both go to work tomorrow and search the house then?” Michael asked.

“Not this week. Mom always takes time off between Christmas and New Years.”

“Oh.” Michael said and then both boys were quiet until Max parked on the street about a block away from his parents’ house.

“Let’s go.” Max said as they quietly waked towards the house and silently let themselves in through the back door. “You check out here and I’ll check back in Dad’s office; be careful and be quiet.” Michael nodded.

A few minutes later, Max came out to the living room carrying a box.

“You found all the stuff?” Michael whispered.

“I think so.” Max whispered back as he put the box down on the kitchen table and opened it up. “There’s the Destiny book, the pendant we found at Atherton’s the three, four, five healing stones and the two orbs; yup, that’s everything.” He closed the box back up. “Let’s get out of here.” Max said and both boys turned to leave and saw Philip Evans come out of the shadows where he had been hiding, ever since he had heard Max searching his office.

“Healing stones…Destiny book, Max? What are these things and how dare you sneak in here, in the middle of the night to take them?”

“How dare I, Dad? How dare you hire a P.I. to follow us; how dare he dig up and steal objects which we obviously don’t want anyone to know about. You once accused me of threatening you; of being dangerous…right now you are the one who is threatening us, being a danger to us. You were going to send these things to a lab, weren’t you?” When his father made no response, Max continued. “If anyone else finds out about these things we’ll be put in danger. Do you want that to happen? Dad, please drop this investigation of yours, before you get us into trouble; trouble that you won’t be able to help us out of.”

“Max this has gone on long enough; I want answers, Now. What is really going on here? What kind of trouble are you in? What are those things?”

“I can’t tell you, Dad; now please, leave us alone.” Max said desperately, before he and Michael rushed out the door and drove away.

“Where can we hide these things now, Maxwell?” Michael asked, as they sped away in Max’s car.

“I don’t know, Michael; since the Granolith chamber was destroyed…”

“That’s why we opted to bury the stuff, because we didn’t have anywhere better to hide them.” Michael agreed.

“Well let’s not talk anymore about it while we’re in the car; until we have a chance to get it checked out for bugs.” Max advised and Michael nodded as they drove through the night to his apartment.

Max was lying on the sofa at Michael’s, trying to go to sleep, but thoughts of the argument he had had with his father a short time ago kept him awake. He jumped a little when his cell-phone, on the side table, rang.

“Hello?” Max asked softly, not wanting to disturb a snoring Michael.

“Max, I wanted to call you when I thought you would be home after searching for your belongings.” Liz’s sweet voice came though the phone and Max relaxed in pleasure. “I hope you hadn’t fallen asleep yet, I just wanted to hear your voice at least once today.”

“Liz.” Max sighed her name like a prayer of thanksgiving. “I’ve missed you too; it’s been a long day.”

“Were you able to find your things?”

“Yeah, they were in Dad’s home office, but just when Michael and I were about to leave, Dad came out of the shadows and we had another argument; you know, Dad demanding to know what our things are and my not telling him anything; it was pretty awful.”

“Max, he’s learning more and more about you, but without any real facts. Maybe…maybe it would be best to tell your parents…”

“Liz…I can’t; besides my fear of their rejection, the more they know about us or become involved in our activities, the more danger they could be in.” They both sighed.

“Yeah, I guess.” Liz said.

“So, how was your day?” Max changed the subject.

“Okay, I guess, considering that it was Max-less. After my shift, Dad had me help him start the inventory.”

“Oh joy.” Max sighed in understanding.

“Well I better go; I don’t want Mom or Dad to hear me on the phone this late at night. Sleep well, Max; I love you.” Liz blew him a kiss and Max blew her one in return.

“Good night, Liz; I love you too, so much.” They both hung up to sleep soundly, having made that short contact with each other.

TBC Feedback Please!

posted on 29-Jan-2002 7:20:30 AM by jane
Thank you So much for your Fabulous feedback!

You make my day!!!! Love, jane
posted on 30-Jan-2002 7:00:22 AM by jane
posted on 31-Jan-2002 6:22:29 PM by jane
***Sorry for the delay; all my time and energy has been taken up with shoveling snow and slip-sliding my way back and forth from work! Hope you are all safe and snuggled inside your homes! Love, jane ***

***Amber Evans, may we come visit you in your "location"? you must be warm and snuggly there!! ***

What Is Max Hiding? Part 5

December 28th

Nicholas’ sergeant gave his morning report to his superior, who was still on Antar with Kivar.

“Sir, we have all taken our places and have found the three remaining Royals. We have kept watch on them and discovered who they are close to; parents and friends over these last two days. We know where to find all of them, when you give the order for them to be taken. Also, the duplicates, Rath and Lonnie arrived yesterday, as Kivar ordered them to.”

“Good, stay in position and don’t let any of the Royals see the Dupes. Kivar will be giving the order any time now.”

“Yes sir.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Philip Evans was working in his office that same morning when his P.I. called.

“Mr. Evans, I think something strange is happening.”


“I have noticed at least two people each watching Max, Isabel, Michael Guerin and Maria DeLuca, as they go around town. The strange thing is that these people watching each kid don’t seem to be working together.”

“You don’t think that they’re watching Liz Parker or Kyle Valenti; I wonder why?”

“Max and Liz have not been able to spend much time together out in the open, so no one watching Max would connect him with Miss Parker. The same explanation works for Kyle; he isn’t so close to Max, Isabel or Michael that he would be connected to them.” Mr. Evans nodded his understanding.

“Have they noticed you?”

“No, I observe from as far away as I can; they seem to be watching from as close as they can. I wouldn’t be surprised if the kids don’t start to notice pretty soon, if those other guys aren’t more careful.”

“Any idea who these other people are?”

“No, but it’s weird how suddenly they all showed up.”

“All right, anything else to report?”

No, Mr. Evans, but I’ll keep watching.”


~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Another old building across town:

“Romath, uh I mean Ross; I have some important news to report.” S’lell or Simon, as he was called here on Earth told his superior Skin.

“What is it, Simon?” Ross asked.

“Matt and I just saw several of Kivar’s Skins walking through town. They were following Max Evans and Lord Rath, I mean Michael Guerin.”

“What?” Ross exclaimed. “I thought they were all killed by the traitor, Tess Harding?” This group, led by Ross had found out that much, when they had come to Roswell, to learn what had happened to their fellow compatriot, Courtney; who, they were fairly certain had killed the shape-shifter and traitor, Nascedo.

“We found traces of a transporter beam, in one of the old buildings, half a mile from here. The residue trace would suggest that they arrived one or two days ago.”

“Well keep an eye on them. They nearly killed Michael Guerin and his group last year; they must not be allowed to try that again.” Ross ordered.

“Should we just kill them, if we get the chance?”

“No, not yet; that would only alert Kivar to our presence and then he would just send more. Watch them for now, but be ready to act; tell the others.” Ross ordered and Simon went to pass everything on to his fellow Michael-followers.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“Roswell auto repair and towing; can I help you?”

“Ava, is that you? This is Max.”

“Yeah it’s me. I helped Kyle work on his car yesterday an’ he told me ‘bout this job at the garage he works at. It’s only cashier, but I can still hang aroun’ with the mechanics an’ the cars. He thinks is boss will le’ me help with the easier stuff so I can learn more; isn’t that cool?”

“Hey that’s great Ava.” Max said, happy for his new friend and then went on to tell her about all of them being followed. “Have you or Kyle noticed anyone following you?”

“Nah; and I can always spot a tail.” Ava said.

“Good, but since I have you on the phone, could you ask Kyle if he knows anything about spotting tracking devices on cars?”

“Sure, just a sec.” Ava said and put Max on hold, but then came back online a few moments later. “Kyle says that he can check your cars for you an’ I can help too; I can mostly pick up on vibes if anyone’s touched somthin’, even cars.”

“Hey that would be great, Ava. Can I bring my car over now? I have to work this afternoon and Michael will bring his bike over at the same time Maria brings her mother’s Jetta over, after they get off work at the Crashdown.”

“Cool, see ya when ya get here.” Ava said. “What’s that sound of water I’ve been hearin’?”

“I have the shower on, hopefully to block anyone from hearing this call if they bugged Michael’s apartment.”

“Oh.” Ava said. “Ya know I could check out your crib just like I could check out your car if you want me to.”

“You could? Well yeah, I guess you’d be using the same gift to find a bug; that would be cool if you could do that for us, Ava; thanks.”

“No prob.” Ava replied, happy to be appreciated for once. “See ya soon.” And this time they hung up.

A few minutes later, Max rolled into the garage after weaving his way through town to discourage anyone from following him. Kyle guided Max as he drove his car inside the garage and then lowered the great doors to give them some privacy.

“Hey Max, my boss is gone today, so this is as good a time as any to check over your car.” Kyle said as he kicked the supports into their proper place, under Max’s car in preparation of raising it up on the giant lift.

“Hey Kyle, thanks for doing this for us; have you had a chance to check out your Mustang?”

“Yeah, actually Ava checked it out but couldn’t find anything.”

“I didn’t realize that you were that good with cars, Ava, I’m impressed.” Max smiled at the small blond.

“Nah, I don’t know that much ‘bout cars, not like Kyle does.” Ava blushed a little. “I jus’ used my powers to check over the car, like I did in Kyle’s crib an’ with Tess’ stuff; I can tell if someone touched his car, even if they’re wearin’ gloves…and I didn’t sense nothin’…but Kyle also looked it over at the same time I did and he didn’t see nothing either.”

“Great, a double check; when can we get started? I don’t want to take the chance of the P.I. finding me.” The three of them got to work; Max tried to use his senses as well, remembering the time he had sensed that Kyle had snuck into Liz’s room, when he had picked up one of her CDs, but it was Ava who pin-pointed the tracking device.

“Someone did search your car, Max; Kyle raise the car, I think there’s somethin’ on the under side.” Kyle nodded and activated the lift. “There it is.” Ava and Kyle said almost at the same time.

“Yeah, that’s a tracking device.” Kyle confirmed. “Several of our customers have these things installed in case their cars get stolen, so the police can locate them. Do you want me to remove it?”

“I don’t know; if we remove it, whoever put it there could just replace it. Is there any way for me to jamb the signal when I need to?”

“Yeah there are jammers on the market.” Kyle answered.

“Max you don’t need a jammer, you can scramble the signal yourself.” Ava said and then when Max looked at her blankly, explained. “Like when you use your powers to change the channel on the TV or radio, you’re just changing the frequency; same thing with these gizmos, you change the frequency so that whoever it belongs to can’t pick up the signal.” Max nodded and started to smile.

“That ability will come in handy tonight; so that we can all meet out in the desert to practice working with our powers.” Max said.

“Who all’s coming tonight?” Kyle asked.

“Me, Ava, Michael, Isabel, Liz and we were hoping you would come too, Kyle.” Max said.

“Me, why me?” Kyle asked. “Why Liz and not Maria?”

“Hey yo, we wanna work together like just our four-square, but ‘cause Liz and you was changed when Max healed you, we want to see what you two can do, too; dig?” Ava explained and Kyle nodded.

“Plus, Maria is scheduled to work at the Crashdown.” Max explained. “Thanks Kyle. Michael will give you the location for the meet when he brings his bike in this afternoon.”

“Okay see you tonight, Max.” Kyle said as Max got into his car and drove away.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“So Isabel how are you going to sneak out of your home with hubby there?” Kyle asked a few hours later when she brought her Mustang to the garage to have it checked out by Ava and Kyle.

“Jesse is out of town until tomorrow.” Isabel answered.

“Handy having a husband who has to travel so much.” Kyle said.

“In this case, yes; but most of the time I miss him so much when he’s gone.” Isabel admitted. “So, how’s it going with you and Ava?” Isabel asked when Ava had to go and help another customer. “It was really nice of you to let her stay in your home and get her a job here.”

“It’s going good; she’s so different from …Tess.” Kyle hated to say the name. “And she likes cars, how cool is that? She knows a lot more about them than she likes to admit; I think she’ll do well here and I can keep an eye on her.”

“Uh huh!” Isabel grinned knowingly. “Well take it slow; I don’t want Either of you to get hurt, okay?” She warned and Kyle nodded, seriously.

“Don’t worry; I don’t want either of us to get hurt either.” Kyle assured her.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“There’s a tracking device on the Jetta as well as on your bike.” Kyle informed Michael and Maria, a while later, when the couple brought their vehicles in to be checked over. “It’s strange that Max’s, Isabel’s, Maria’s and your cars all had bugs on them, but neither mine, nor my dad’s cars have them.”

“Well hopefully our ‘watchers’ aren’t interested in you two.” Michael said.

“Yeah, well see you tonight.” Kyle said; Michael having told him where they were going to meet out in the desert.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Later that night:

“Hey you guys, did you have any trouble getting here?” Max asked, as Michael, Maria, Kyle and Ava got out of the Jetta; Liz and Isabel, who had ridden out with him, stood on either side of him.

“No, we saw our tail as soon as Maria picked me up and we were able to lose it within a few blocks and then I scrambled the signal before we went to pick up Kyle and Ava.” Michael explained.

“We weren’t tailed.” Ava confirmed.

“Great, well I picked this spot because it’s miles away from any sort of road and there aren’t any boulders anywhere nearby for someone to hide behind, so let’s get to work.”

“Won’t we need some light soon?” Isabel asked.

“Yeah, let’s leave our car lights on; that’ll give us enough light.” Kyle suggested.

“We could do that.” Ava agreed. “But why don’t we try to make these stones glow?”

“Glow?” Michael asked.

“Yeah, Michael, glow.” Max said as he picked up a stone the size of a basketball, held it in his hands…and made it glow.

“How’d you know how to do that?” Michael asked.

“I just knew. I did it once, out at the Indian Reservation when River Dog tested me; it’s easy, give it a try.”

Michael picked up a stone and tried to make it glow, but only succeeded in making it explode.

“Yikes!” Kyle yelled, leaping away from Michael, taking Ava with him.

“Too much power, Michael.” Isabel said as she picked up a stone. “You just relax and let the power slowly flow through your hands.” She explained as her stone started to glow.

Michael picked up another stone and grimaced as everyone took a step back away from him. He tried to relax and the stone began to glow but then its light brightened almost blindingly before it exploded.

“Michael, try taking slow, deep breaths while Ava shows us what she can do.” Max suggested.

Michael did so, remembering that scene from the movie: Karate Kid II; breathing in through his nose and exhaling through his mouth as Ava picked up a stone and made it glow. He bent over and picked up another stone, still breathing deeply, calmly and…it started to glow gently, building slowly, until it pulsed, brightly.”

“Great, Michael!” Max exclaimed. “Now Liz and Kyle, why don’t you each pick up a rock and give it a try.” They both did, looking hesitantly at Max. “Close your eyes and take slow, deep breaths; visualize in your mind a gentle light building within you and then let the light flow out through your hands and into the stone.”

Liz and Kyle did as Max told them and after a moment, Liz’s stone started to glow a tiny bit; she opened her eyes a little and looked in wonder at the faintly glowing rock.

“I did it…a little!” Liz exclaimed.

Kyle opened his eyes to see Liz’s efforts and then looked glumly at his own rock, which refused to cooperate.

“Hey why didn’t mine glow? I’m an athlete, I know how to visualize.” Kyle asked.

“Well…I healed you eight months after I healed Liz; maybe your powers just haven’t had enough time to grow.” Max suggested.

“We could try what Liz and I did, when you were in New York.” Isabel suggested. “I may have leant her some power or something that first time.”

“Sure give that a try; Kyle take Isabel’s hand.” Max suggested.

Kyle took Isabel’s hand and tried again. After a few moments the stone began to glow but then faded away.

“Rats!” Kyle exclaimed.

“Don’t worry about it, Kyle.” Isabel patted his hand before she let it go.

“Well why don’t the rest of us make some more stones glow, to provide us with light?” Max suggested and they did, creating a ring of glowing stones around them.

“Okay so yous guys have never tried out your four-square?” Ava asked and they all shook their heads, no.

“Let’s try it now.” Max said and they took each other’s hands; Max, Ava, Michael, Isabel and back to Max again; facing inwards. “Is this the proper order for us to stand? It occurs to me that there are several ways for us to arrange ourselves; this way, boy, girl, boy, girl or Ava across from me and Michael across from Isabel, or Isabel across from me and Ava across from Michael.”

“What difference does it make, Maxwell?” Michael asked impatiently.

“Well it might make a difference in how our powers flow or how we are arranged defensively, if you and Isabel are on one side and Ava and I are on the other.” Max said.

“Why would that make a difference, Max?” Isabel asked, curious.

“Because you and Michael have the offensive powers and Ava and I have the defensive powers. Should offensive powers be next to each other, so they can work together, or should they be split up so they can cover each other’s backs?”

“Your last option makes the most sense to me, Max.” Liz said quietly from where she stood beside Kyle, outside the four-square.

“Yeah, in war movies the two heroes always end up fighting back to back.” Kyle mentioned.

“Yeah and that’s how it’s shown in the Destiny book, so maybe that’s what that troublesome diagram meant; our fighting position, rather than who we were supposed to mate with.” Isabel suggested.

“Hey yeah.” Michael chimed in, remembering those dreams which he and Isabel had shared and all the trouble they had caused. “Do you think those stupid dreams Isabel and I shared were products of one of Tess’ mind-warps?”

“Maybe, I got some vibes from some of Tess’ stuff, from before she came to stay with Kyle and his dad and I’ve been…foolin’ with them a little. Tess and Nascedo had a lota fun toyin’ with you guys.” Ava told them, looking around at everyone, but especially at Max.

“I’ve never understood the way they acted when they first came to Roswell. Tess sought out Isabel almost right away, trying to worm her way into our group playing mind games with us the whole time. Why didn’t they come right out and tell us who they were? Or, if Nascedo’s plan right from the beginning was to betray us to Kivar, why didn’t he just send us back as soon as they found us in Roswell? Why did he bother saving me from the FBI?” Max asked.

“What Kivar wants most is your child, Max; under his control.” Liz suggested quietly. “To get that, Tess had to seduce you into making her pregnant. I think that all the masks she wore; all the parts she played were her different attempts at getting you to fall hopelessly under her spell. Nascedo had to rescue you from the FBI, because Tess was not yet pregnant with your child and you or your heir was needed to make the Granolith work.” Max and the others looked thoughtfully at Liz and nodded.

“Good points, Liz. Ava, can you add anything to Liz’s theory?” Max asked.

“Nah, Tess’ vibes ain’t very clear.” Ava said.

“Well if you can find us any answers, we would all be very grateful, Ava.” Max said, smiling down at her.

“I’ll try.” Ava said softly, happy that they were not mixing her up with Tess.

“Let’s get on with the exercise already; are we going to change positions or not?” Michael asked.

“Yes, let’s try that.” Max said after Ava nodded that that would be the best way to stand; Michael across from Isabel and Max across from Ava.

“Now this is Very interesting.” Max murmured after they took each other’s hands again. “I didn’t feel much of anything before, but I can definitely feel a flow, almost a surge of power flowing through me.”

“Me too!” Isabel exclaimed and Michael and Ava nodded.

“Now what?” Kyle asked.

“Kyle, could you find some rocks and place them in a row on the ground? I’ll try to blow them up.” Michael said and Kyle set up a line of stones of varying sizes.

Michael had little trouble blowing them up one by one and then he tried moving the last two around on the ground.

“Hey, that’s great, Michael; that’s the best you’ve ever done!” Isabel exclaimed. “And you didn’t even have to hold your hand out in front of you.” Michael smiled happily at his increased power and control.

“How can I test my power; I haven’t really used it since I fought Whittaker.” Isabel asked.

“Do you think you could blow up rocks, as Michael just did?” Max asked.

“I don’t know; I can try.” Isabel said and Kyle set up some more stones for her to practice on. She had some success, but was not nearly as good at it as Michael was.

“Maybe you’d be better at deflecting something, which is thrown at you; isn’t that what you did to Congresswoman Whittaker?” Liz asked.

“Yeah, kind of.” Isabel said, uncertain.

“Kyle throw some rocks at Isabel.” Ava suggested.

“Are you crazy?” Kyle exclaimed.

“I think it will be okay and Max can be ready to put up his shield if necessary.” Ava said and Isabel nodded.

“I think it will be all right, Kyle; give it a try.” Isabel encouraged Kyle, who hesitated and then picked up a handful of stones.

“Okay, here they come.” Kyle warned, before he threw the first rock at Isabel.

Isabel didn’t deflect the rock; she flew it up at a safe distance from the four-square. After she did the same to half a dozen more rocks, some which were thrown simultaneously, Kyle suggested that Max try deflecting the stones with his shield. Max nodded and Kyle gathered a couple more handfuls of stones. Max raised and lowered his shield each time with great accuracy; either protecting just his side of the four-square or extending the shield over all four of them, when Kyle threw a handful of rocks up in the air and they came pelting down on top of all of them. Max felt no draining of power as he had the other times he had used his shield to protect himself. Ava surprised everyone into thinking that a T-Rex was chasing Kyle and Liz. Liz instinctively ran towards Max and as she wrapped her arms around his shoulders, the entire four-square felt a surge of power flow through them.

“Wow, what just happened?” Michael exclaimed and Ava stopped the mind-warp, which had become more detailed with Raptors and other predatory dinosaurs coming towards them.

“Liz, honey could you let go of me for just a second, please?” Max asked and Liz did so, reluctantly; the power levels went down. “Now, touch me again.” Max instructed and Liz did so, laying her hand over his chest. The power level spiked up again.

“That’s incredible, Liz; you seem able to lend us power.” Isabel exclaimed to a stunned Liz.

“Can Kyle do the same thing?” Liz asked and Kyle came forward and lay his hand on Ava’s shoulder. There was a slight increase in power, but not a large one.

“He can lend a small amount of power, but I’m guessing his gifts haven’t grown enough to really help in that area.” Max explained, gently.

“Hey no problem; you all know that I don’t want any part of having alien powers!” Kyle exclaimed, relieved.

The young people practiced for awhile more, with and without Liz; listening to Ava’s instructions and further information, before they decided that they had worked hard enough for their first day. Michael would drive Kyle and Ava home before he returned the Jetta to Maria, who had had to work at the Crashdown that night, but who would be home by then and Max would drop Isabel off at hers’ and Jesse’s apartment, before taking Liz home.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Meanwhile, in another part of Roswell:

“Nicholas, we have lost contact with the Royals.” A Skin sergeant informed his superior, who was still on Antar.

“What do you mean; you’ve lost contact with the Royals?” Nicholas yelled.

“We were following them as ordered and all of a sudden they swerved through traffic and disappeared around a corner. When we lost sight of them, we checked the tracking signal, but it was full of static. Those kids must have learned that we were following them somehow and figured out how to jamb our signal. We haven’t been able to clean up the problem all night; they have totally disappeared, sir.”

“Well then we’ll just have to move up our plans a little. Kivar and I will arrive there within the hour; in the meantime you are to collect those Humans who are close to the Royals; Michael’s girlfriend and Isabel’s new mate, as well as Max and Isabel’s adoptive parents.”

“Yes sir!” The men saluted before signing off and organizing to carry out their orders.

TBC Feedback Please! All parts to this story are being posted on the Repost Board. Thank you, jane.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 31-Jan-2002 6:31:34 PM ]
posted on 3-Feb-2002 6:34:11 AM by jane
***Thank you So Much for your feedback! You really make me smile! Hope you like this next part! Love, jane! ***

What Is Max Hiding? Part 6

Maria opened the kitchen door to her home and came in to see her mother brewing a pot of tea.

“Hey Mom.”

“Hi honey; how was work?” Amy DeLuca turned and smiled at her precious daughter. “Would you like some tea?”

“No thanks Mom; um work was okay considering I had to work with Agnes.” Maria rolled her eyes, thinking about the irritating waitress as she walked to the refrigerator and pulled out a cherry Coke.

“I was just about to make some popcorn and watch “Shrek”, would you like to join me?”

“Yeah, sure; I love that movie!” Maria smiled happily.

Just then the back door crashed open and two men came in. Both DeLuca women screamed and Amy tried to push Maria behind her.

“Who are you; what do you want? My purse is there on the table; take what you want and get out of here.” Amy tried to keep her voice firm, but it wobbled a little. The men ignored her.

“We want Michael Guerin.” When neither woman said anything to this, the man continued. “But we’ll take her; Guerin’s girlfriend.” They both pointed to Maria, who then popped her head up from behind Amy’s back.

“You can’t have her.” Amy said, determinably.

Again, the men ignored her and moved forward to grab Maria. Both women backed up around the kitchen, trying to get through the door where maybe they could run; but the men stepped forward more quickly and grabbed hold of Maria.

“You’re Not taking my daughter anywhere. Help! HELP!” Amy yelled at the top of her lungs.

Maria was being pulled between the two men and her frantic mother. Amy felt her grip on Maria’s arm slipping, heard her daughter cry out in fear, realized that they were overpowered and changed tactics.

“Wherever you take Maria; you take me.” Amy stopped pulling on her daughter but wrapped her arms around her instead and let the men take the two of them.

“Mom, no!” Maria cried. “Run, get help!”

But it was too late for Amy to follow her daughter’s advice as one man grabbed her, tied her wrists and covered her mouth with duct-tape and his partner did the same thing to Maria. Just before they left the house; one of the men raised his glowing hand and waived it over the kitchen cabinets, leaving a message. Amy stopped struggling when she saw the glowing hand and the note. “Guerin, come to the cheese factory or the Humans die!”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Jesse Ramirez opened the door to his and Isabel’s apartment. He was looking forward to seeing Isabel’s happy expression at his early return. He missed his lovely bride so much whenever he had to travel.

“Isabel honey, I’m home; my last meeting was cancelled; sorry I didn’t get…to…call…you.”

Jesse could tell the apartment was empty and the smile on his handsome face slipped a little in disappointment. Then his common sense clicked in. Isabel was probably out with her friends or at her parents’ house; she had told him how lonely she became whenever he was away. That was one reason he had tried so hard to come back early; he knew that he would have to fly out to another meeting on the thirtieth. Jesse checked through the other rooms in the small apartment, just to be sure that he was indeed alone and then picked up the phone from the coffee table, in order to start looking for his wife. He called his in-laws first.

“Hello, Diane? It’s Jesse; is Isabel there…?”

Diane never got to answer him, because just at that moment, Jesse heard a loud crash come through the phone line.

“Diane, are you all right?” Jesse yelled over the noise on the other end of the line, but there was no answer.

“Hello? HELLO? Diane?” He yelled before the line went dead.

Jesse immediately started to call the Sheriff’s department, but then the door to the apartment crashed open in a blast of bright light. Two men stood in the doorway; one looking directly at him, the other glancing around the room. The one who held eye contact put out a glowing hand and yanked the phone out of Jesse’s hand…from fifteen feet away, slamming the hand-set up against the wall, where it broke apart into little pieces of plastic. The man then advanced on Jesse and grabbed him around the neck with one arm, while his other hand took hold of his wrist and pulled his arm behind his back.

“Who are you; what do you want?” Jesse gasped out through the tight grip around his throat.

“We want your wife. Where’s Valondra?” Asked the guy who was holding him.

‘Thank God, they have the wrong apartment.’ Jesse thought. “You have the wrong apartment, man; no one named Valondra lives here, I swear.”

“Idiot, her name is Isabel Ramirez now.” The other man yelled at his partner as he came back into the living room after searching the rest of the apartment.

Jesse’s hope that this was all a big mistake disappeared with those words and he began to struggle; knocking over a side table and the lamp on top of it.

“Is-Isabel; what do you want with her?” Jesse asked, terrified for his beloved wife.

“To executer her, what else?” The guy holding Jesse answered with a verbal shrug.

“Ex-execute…kill…her?” Jesse exclaimed. “Why; what, what did she ever do to you?” He redoubled his fight for freedom, to no avail.

“Let’s just say that Princess Valondra has a lot to answer for.” The guy behind Jesse said, chuckling.

“Come on; let’s get out of here; Kivar will be arriving soon.” The other guy told his partner and came to grab Jesse’s other arm and slip a piece of duct-tape over his mouth and bind his wrists with the same gray tape, before they hustled him towards the door.

Just before they closed the apartment door, the guy who seemed to be in charge lifted his glowing hand and waived it over the wall by the door. Jesse’s eyes grew huge as he saw this trick and read the note, which the two Skins left behind. “Valondra, come to Kivar at the cheese factory or your Human dies!”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

At the Evans’ residence, Diane was preparing diner when Phillip came home. She noticed that he had a troubled expression on his face.

“Are you all right honey? You look worried about something.” Diane asked as they greeted each other with a hug and a kiss.

“Worried; yeah I guess I am. My P.I. called this morning to tell me that he’s seen some people following the kids; I’ve been trying to figure out what to do about it. Should I call the kids and warn them; would they even trust me? I don’t know who these people are, what they look like, or what they want.”

“Someone’s following our kids; just Max and Isabel?” Diane asked.

“No they’re also following Michael Guerin and Maria DeLuca.”

“Not Liz Parker? That’s strange.” Diane remarked.

“Well we’re pretty sure that Michael is in on whatever Max and Isabel are involved in; maybe Maria is too. Max and Liz have had to stay apart so maybe no one watching Max has made the connection yet.” Phillip suggested.

“Phillip, if they’re making connections by whom they see with the kids; could they be watching us as well? I visited Max yesterday and if they notice your P.I. watching them, they may connect you to the kids through him.” Diane wondered.

“Hmm; I haven’t noticed anyone watching or following me, but then I haven’t been looking either.” Phillip said, thoughtfully. “We’ll both have to be careful and more alert.” Diane nodded.

Just then the phone rang and she reached for the kitchen phone.

“Hello? Hi Jesse…”

Diane didn’t get the chance to say any more, because the back door crashed open and two men came bursting in. One of them rushed past Phillip to make a hurried search of the rest of the house, the other saw Diane on the phone and raised a glowing hand up in front of him. Suddenly the phone’s hand-set was yanked out of Diane’s hand and flew through the air, to hit the wall hard and break into tiny pieces of plastic.

Phillip grabbed Diane and tried to place her behind him, but the first man, after a fruitless search of the house, came up, grabbed Diane from behind Philip and pushed her, tripping and stumbling, over to his partner who caught her in a vice-like grip, while the first man caught Philip by a lightning-fast head lock.

“What do you want? You have me; let my wife go, please.” Philip said urgently.

Both men ignored his plea, but answered his questions with another.

“Where’s your son, Max Evans and you daughter, Isabel Ramirez?”

“Max, Isabel; what do you want with them?” Diane cried out.

“We don’t know where they are, neither of them live here anymore.” Philip answered.

“Oh come now; they’re good little children, surely they would have told their mommy and daddy where they were going, especially if they would be gone for an extended length of time.” The man holding Philip said mockingly.

“Well they didn’t, so I’m sure they’re just around somewhere. No need for all this over reacting. I ask you again, what do you want with our kids; what have they become involved in? If it’s money…” A tightening of the arm around his throat stopped Philip from finishing his sentence.

“No it isn’t money.” The man holding Diane almost spat out. “As if Kivar would be interested in something as trivial as that…” The lead man motioned for him to be quiet.

“Who’s Kivar?” Philip asked with casual curiosity in his voice.

“He is our leader; the greatest ruler Antar has ever known.” The young and idealistic Skin answered as his superior motioned impatiently for him to shut up.

“Antar?” Philip took the chance and asked one last question.
“Our planet…” His informant started to say, when the other man raised his glowing hand and shot an energy bolt at him. Amazingly he did not loosen his hold on Diane, but he did stop talking and so did Philip.

“Stop chit-chatting; we have to get these two back to our base before Kivar comes.” The lead man yelled.

As Philip heard the young man say that the two of them were from the planet Antar, he started to panic.

‘Oh man, these two are lunatics, insane.’ His brain could not process what he had seen in the last few minutes; glowing hands, flying objects and energy bolts. ‘I didn’t hear anything on the news about inmates breaking out of any mental wards…what can we do? You can’t talk reasonably with insane people…okay, stay calm, Evans. Stay calm and look for a way to escape.’ Philip thought hurriedly.

But then the man holding him raised his glowing hand again and swept it over the wall, leaving behind a message. “Zan and Valondra; come to the cheese factory and give yourselves up to Kivar, or the Humans die!”

Then the men muscled the two parents who were either too stunned or scared to struggle, out of the house and into their enclosed jeep, which had been pulled into their driveway. They were forcefully helped into the back of the jeep and then their captors got in up front; the man who was not driving turned back to keep an eye on them.

It was too noisy in the jeep for Philip to ask all the questions, which were running around in his mind. Then too he was wondering if he would receive reasonable answers from these insane individuals. ‘Hmm, this guy driving seems to be calm enough; his driving is competent and steady…and his partner is just quietly watching us. Maybe they’re only delusional and have cooked up this story of being from another planet to justify their actions.’ Philip wondered to himself; he would bide his time until they arrived at their destination before he tried to ask some more questions. He had two goals in mind; to keep himself and Diane safe and alive, the second; to find out everything he could about Max and whatever he was hiding.

When their car reached the old cheese factory, it was driven inside so as to not attract attention from anyone driving by. Once the car stopped, the two men jumped out and once again forcibly helped the older couple out of the back of the jeep. They were led over to a set of folding metal chairs, which were in turn chained to a nearby column and made to sit in two of them and tied to them with duct-tape.

Just as their captors were finishing up with them, two more jeeps drove into the old building. Jesse Ramirez was dragged, still struggling, out of one, while Amy and Maria DeLuca were brought out of the other. Diane could see the defiant spirit in the women’s eyes, but that for now at least, their bodies were too worn out to struggle and fight. All three were brought over and made to sit down on more of the chairs. Not only Jesse’s arms, but his legs as well,
were secured to the chair, while Amy and Maria were only tied to their chairs with their hands behind their backs. Once they were secured, the gray tape covering their mouths was ripped off quickly; Jesse only grunted in pain, while Amy and Maria cried out and started to yell, complain and berate their captors. The six aliens only chuckled.

“Yell, scream and scheme all you want; no one can hear you in here and you will never escape alive if you try. You have been brought here to ensure the good behavior of your children, mates and friends; that is all.” The man in charge said before all six men moved away to prepare for Kivar and the capture of Max and the others.

None of the captives asked what would happen to them, after their loved ones had been captured; they either already knew the truth or didn’t want it confirmed. There was a very good chance that none of them would leave this place alive.

“Philip, Diane; do you know what’s going on here? These creeps took us because they want Michael for something, but that’s all they said.” Amy DeLuca asked.

“All we know is that they want Max and Isabel as well.” Philip replied.

“They took me because of Isabel.” Jesse added. “But they called her Valondra at first; I thought they had busted into the wrong apartment. What is going on Philip?” Jesse asked his father-in-law. “Do you think this has anything do with what you’ve been trying to find out about Max?”

“You think Max is into something…bad?” Amy asked. “Jim told me about what happened to Max and Liz in Utah, but he still believes that they are good kids who made a big mistake…but that, that was all. I thought they were still good kids.”

“Amy…” Philip hesitated before he continued. “Max has always been a …private kid…but a good one. Now, I don’t know…he never explained his actions in Utah…to the point of moving out of the house.”

“He moved out because he didn’t want to lie to you either.” Diane added.

“But Max has been lying to us, hasn’t he, Diane? So has Isabel.” Philip asked his wife before turning back to Amy. “We have found out that he has been lying to us for some time now; he would say that he was going camping or staying at Michael’s but we’ve learned that he wasn’t camping or at Michael’s. Among other places, he up and traveled to New York, the Thanksgiving before last; without a word or even cover story for Isabel to feed us and he would never give us any explanation either. I only know where he went because we found a ticket from the Empire State Building in his jeans. And there are other mysteries around that kid…and I’m afraid around Isabel and Michael too. Maybe even…” Philip shifted his eyes to Maria. “…around your daughter, Liz Parker and the Valentis.”

“Jim, Kyle and…Maria?” Amy asked, disbelieving before she turned to her daughter. “Maria, I know that you and Michael have done some…things together, but I never dreamed that they were actually dangerous…beyond your getting pregnant…”

“Mom!” Maria cried out, mortified.

“Maria, we have been abducted, brought to this place and tied up; if you know anything about what’s going on, you’d better start talking, young lady.” Amy said firmly. Maria hesitated before saying anything.

“I don’t know any more about what’s going on than any of you do. These people are enemies of Max, Isabel and Michael’s and they want to hurt or kill them…and we are the bait to draw them in.”

“Who are these guys, Maria? And what’s with their glowing hands and ability to shoot energy bolts?” Philip asked.

“Glowing hands and energy bolts? I didn’t see anything like that, when they took us…” ‘Well not this time, anyway.’ Maria thought to herself as she hedged. “I don’t know who these guys are.”

“What have Max, Isabel and Michael been mixed up in that makes these guys want to hurt them?” Philip asked, trying to draw Maria out, but Jesse interrupted again.

“They said that they wanted to execute, not just kill, but execute Isabel. They said that she has a lot to answer for.” Jesse said; half doubtful and accusatory, half terrified for his young wife.

“Isabel,” Maria emphasized her name. “Has done nothing wrong; nothing bad.” ‘Well, except defending herself against Skins.’ Maria thought silently. “Neither have Max or Michael…well except for Utah, but that was very important and Max is really, really sorry for getting Liz and himself into trouble.”

“What was Max really doing in Utah, Maria?” Philip asked, but she ignored the question.

“These guys here are the black hats; they are the ones who want to hurt Max, Isabel, Michael…and us. Max doesn’t want to hurt anyone.”

“What does Max want; is he still looking for Tess Harding and his child?” Philip asked, realizing that there was no point in trying to make Maria answer any questions she didn’t want to.

“Well, he’s still looking for Tess, but it’s not so important now, since he found out that she was lying about being pregnant.” Maria answered warily; waiting to see what she would be asked next. She was determined not to give away any of Max’s secrets.

“But Max is still looking for other things; other answers, isn’t he, Maria?” Diane asked softly, remembering how she and Max had talked that one time in the park, after the kitchen fire…Whether they should try to find his and Isabel’s real parents. Max had thought that they never would find them, but had assured her that in his heart, she and Philip were his real parents. And then Max had told her that he didn’t remember his real home and begged his mother not to ask any more questions. “Has he been able to find out anything about his real parents or where he came from?”

“Maybe you should ask me those questions, Mom…after we get you out of here.” Max said, as he walked across the old factory; Isabel, Michael, Liz, Kyle and a small blond girl came with him.
Their six captors were moving in behind her son and his friends and then from behind their seats came another voice.

“Hey, Dupe.” They swung around to see two people with a remarkable resemblance to Isabel and Michael walk out of the shadows.

“Rath, Lonnie.” Max said, calmly.

TBC Feedback Please! Now Don't Worry, everything is happening for a reason; this will Not be dragged out for very long at all!

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 3-Feb-2002 6:36:21 AM ]
posted on 4-Feb-2002 6:52:22 AM by jane
He, he, he, he! !

I'll try to post part 7 on Tuesday or Wednesday!

Love, jane
posted on 7-Feb-2002 6:48:59 AM by jane
***Thank you so much for your Wonderful feedback! You really make my day! Love, jane

A couple people have asked about the difference in Liz and Kyle's powers...I tried to explain earlier that since Max healed Kyle about 8 months after he healed Liz, Kyle just hasn't had as much time to develope his powers as Liz has. I suspect he will follow in her footsteps, down the road! ***

What Is Max Hiding? Part 7

Max and Liz dropped Isabel off at her apartment building, after their practice session out in the desert and then started to drive out of the complex.

“Where did you tell your parents you were going tonight?” Max asked Liz.

“I had to tell them that Isabel and I were going to have a girl’s night together, since Maria was working and Jesse was out of town.” Liz answered.

“How much time do we have before you’re expected back home; or did you tell them you were sleeping over with Izzy?” Max asked.

“I was actually able to get Mom to let me sleep over.” Liz grinned at Max. “And Isabel gave me a key to their place so that I can let myself in…whenever I want to!”

“Oh really?” Max asked, while wagging his eyebrows suggestively.

“Yeah!” Liz let the affirmative out on a happy sigh as she leaned over and kissed Max on the cheek as he drove.

Just then Max’s cell-phone rang.

“Hello?” Max said. “Isabel? What? Calm down…okay, okay, we’re on our way back; meet us at the outside door.”

Max disconnected the call and pressed the speed-dial for his parents’ home. He listened to the phone ring and ring, as he turned the car around and headed back the way they had come.

“Come on, come on; pick up the phone.” Max mumbled and then shut the phone’s lid when no one answered. By that time they had reached the apartment building again and Isabel was waiting for them; she jumped into the back of the car and they took off; tires squealing.

“Max, Isabel; what’s wrong?” Liz asked breaking her concerned silence.

“When I walked into our apartment, I saw overturned furniture; Jesse’s suitcase, in the middle of the floor and a sign burned onto the wall; to give myself up to Kivar at the cheese factory, or they’d kill Jesse!” Isabel was almost in tears. “The sign was addressed to Valondra.”

“Oh no, Isabel…” Liz said, turning in her seat to see her friend and press a hand over one of Isabel’s. “Max who did you try to call after you hung up with Isabel?”

“Mom and Dad; but there was no answer and their machine didn’t pick up…they may just be out tonight, but…” Max took a corner sharply and Liz could feel the tires almost leave the pavement.

“Max, this is a residential street; you’d better slow down a little or you’ll be pulled over and ticketed and that will waste even more time.” Liz advised and she saw his fingers tighten on the steering wheel, but also felt the car slow down a little.

When they reached the Evans’ residence, Max pulled into the driveway and was about to get out of the car when his cell-phone rang yet again.

“Hello? Michael…what? Oh man! Yeah we’re at Mom and Dad’s; call Kyle and Ava, make sure they’re okay and then all of you meet us here as soon as you can.” Max said and then hung up.

“What’s wrong, Max? Oh man, has something happened to Maria?” Liz asked, worried.

“I’m afraid so.” Max said, taking Liz by her slender shoulders. “Michael drove to the DeLuca’s to return the Jetta and pick up his bike. When he arrived, he found the back door wide open, kitchen things on the floor, no sign of Maria or her mother and a sign, similar to Isabel’s printed across the cupboards, but it said ‘your humans will die’; plural.” Liz brought up one hand to cover her mouth and her eyes closed as tears seeped out; Max gathered her into his arms; her head tucked in under his chin. “We’ll get her back, Liz; we’ll get them all back.” Max said, trying to keep them all calm.

Then he switched Liz into the circle of just one strong arm so he could guide her towards his parents’ house. Inside, they found the smashed phone and the message on the wall.

“Max!” Isabel cried out and was gathered into her brother’s other arm; each giving comfort to the other in a three-way hug. A few minutes later they heard a car and a motorcycle pull up out front of the house and footsteps running towards the door. Isabel pulled away from her brother and went to let their friends in.

“Max, what’s going on? Michael only garbled something about Maria being taken by Skins and ordered the two of us to come here right away.” Kyle exclaimed.

“Maria, Mrs. DeLuca, Jesse and it seems, our parents, as well.” Max confirmed, nodding and gesturing towards the sign on the wall, wich Kyle and Ava gaped at. Max and Liz noticed that Kyle was keeping Ava’s hand held tightly within his own and in spite of what was going on around them, they smiled at each other, in happiness for their two friends. Then Liz gasped.

“Oh man, why didn’t I think to…?” Liz exclaimed, pulling out her own cell-phone and pressed the speed-dial for her own home, but then hung up after her father answered the phone. “My dad answered and then I didn’t know what to say to him. I wonder why they weren’t taken.” Liz said, putting her cell away in her coat pocket.

“Maybe our being kept apart was a good thing this once.” Max said, thoughtfully, gazing at his lovely Liz. “Whoever has been watching us was unable to make the connection between you and me…and your parents…If they had captured you…” Max groaned and gathered Liz back into his arms and held on tight.

“I’m fine, Max and so are my mom and dad.” Liz assured him with a deep kiss and her arms tightly woven around his neck.

Meanwhile, Ava, still holding onto Kyle’s hand, had walked over to the sign on the wall and put her unclaimed hand out to touch it. Then the two of them walked around the room, to the back door, as she touched different objects and surfaces.

“Max, Max, I think your mom and dad was just grabbed; like maybe fifteen minutes ago!” Ava cried, excitedly. “An’ I think Kivar an’ Nicholas ain’t gotten here, yet. Those Skins who grabbed ‘em was in a hurry ‘cause those two are comin’ soon.”

“Fifteen minutes…and maybe Kivar and Nicholas haven’t arrived yet? Then if we hurry, we could reach the cheese factory before they do and have a better chance of rescuing everyone. Kyle, you and Liz stay here; come on you guys.” Max motioned to the other three.

“Max, I’m coming with you.” Liz exclaimed. “I’m one of the four…I mean the five-square, now.”

“I may not have powers yet, but I know well how to kill a Skin.” Kyle added, taking Ava’s hand in both of his and looking deeply into her eyes.

“Come on Max, we’re wasting time.” Liz said, determinedly; taking Max by the hand and dragging him out the door to his car, which all six of them piled into.

“Okay we’ve gotta have a plan before we get there.” Ava said, once they were on their way.

“What are the chances that the Skins know you’re here, Ava?” Max asked.

“Small, they ain’t got no idea where I am.” Ava answered.

“Yeah, if they knew about Ava they would have taken me and Dad.” Kyle said, knowing that his father and his band were safely out of town playing at a wedding reception.

“Okay then Ava, when we get to the cheese factory, I want you to mind-warp the Skins into thinking that it is just the three of us; Michael, Isabel and I who have come to try and rescue everyone.” Max said and Ava nodded.

“If we get into a fight, hold the warp as long as you can; making them think that we don’t have the four-square could really help us.” Michael instructed.

“Ava, just a small detail, but show the three of them as standing together but not touching. If the three of you are seen to be holding hands, the Skins might become suspicious.” Liz added.

“Great point, Liz!” Max exclaimed, glancing to his girlfriend who was sitting in the front seat of the car, between himself and Michael and briefly took her hand and brought it to his lips. “That way we can be holding hands in our four-square, with you within our circle and Kyle nearby, ready for anything they throw at us.”

“Now that we’ve figured out how we’re going to fight, can we discuss what we’re going to do if they hold a gun to Maria’s or Jesse’s heads and demand that we surrender?” Michael asked.

“We surrender, of course.” Max said, instantly. “No one else is going to be hurt because of me.”

“Maxwell, what chance do we have of escaping ourselves, much less rescuing Maria and the others; if we let them take us; do you honestly think that the Skins will let them live even if we do give ourselves up?” Michael demanded.

“Can you honestly just sit there and tell me that you could watch them threaten Maria and Not do anything they want, to stop them?” Max argued.

“But odds are that she’ll be killed anyway!” Michael exclaimed.

“But we have to take the chance, we have to try. They can’t be allowed to hurt our parents or Jesse, or Maria.” Max countered.

“Guys, guys, I think we gotta compromise here.” Kyle said.

“There has to be another way.” Isabel agreed.

“Yo, maybe I can mind-warp them Skins into thinkin’ we’re givin’ in.” Ava suggested.

“You could do that?” Max asked.

“Think so.” Ava shrugged. “I’ll start now, we’s followin’ the trail of a lotta Skins…weird…they’s spooked ‘cause they’s know Michael’s in trouble?” Ava asked, confused by the emotions she was sensing.

“Could they be Courtney’s people?” Isabel asked.

“Wow, it’s cool that you can sense them even though there’s nothing for you to touch and pick up any vibes from.” Kyle said and Ava shrugged again.

“They’s emotions is leakin’ out.” Ava answered. “Who’s Courtney?”

“She was a Skin but part of a splinter-group within the Skins who want Michael to rule Antar rather than me…or Kivar.” Max explained.

“Did your protector ever tell you about such a group of Skins?” Liz asked.

“Nope. Do you’s trust ‘em?” Ava asked.

We don’t know them…so…no we don’t trust them…yet.” Isabel answered . “But Courtney did give up her life to keep our secrets safe.”

“And here we are.” Kyle said, seeing the old structure coming up fast. “Everyone got your game-faces on?” Ava nodded and so did everyone else after a brief hesitation.

Max brought the car to a stop and they all got out and then arranged themselves into the four-square, holding hands; Liz within their circle and Kyle standing nearby. They looked around anxiously before moving towards the building. When they got closer a group of men and women quietly slid around the corner, towards them. They kept their hands at their sides while Max and the others tensed, looking behind them to make sure they were not being surrounded and then back to the dozen people in front of them. The leader stepped forward a couple steps but addressed himself to Michael.

“Lord Rath…I mean Michael, we’re here to help you; my name is Ross. You knew one of our people named Courtney.”

“Yeah I knew a girl named Courtney and I trusted her but how do I know I…we, can trust you? Where have you been all this time? Where were you when the Skins attacked our town and Courtney sacrificed herself to keep our secrets safe?” Michael asked.

“We came as quickly as we could, but we were too late.” Ross said sadly. “But ever since, we have been close by, watching and guarding your backs. You can’t go in there, it’s a trap.”

“We know that, but our friends and families are in there and besides, if we move now there’s a chance that Kivar and Nicholas haven’t arrived yet and that will raise the odds of our success.” Max said firmly.

Meanwhile, Ava, whom the Michael-followers could not see, had put out a hand and held it closely to Ross’ face, trying to sense his thoughts.

“He’s telling the truth, Max.” Ava said, still unheard within her strong mind-warp.

“Have them go in first, Max.” Liz suggested quietly. “One of them could come back out and tell us where they’re holding our friends, while the others could take up positions and be ready to help when needed.”

“Sounds like you’ve been watching too many cop shows!” Michael teased her. “But it sounds like a good idea.”

“Whatever; we have to get in there.” Isabel said, anxiously.

During these brief seconds, Max had tried to make his expressions seem like he was considering Ross’ advice and his own decision. Nodding he said.

“Alright, could you guys go in first, find out where the other Skins are holding their hostages and then one of you come out and tell us? We have to move quickly.”

Ross looked to Michael questioningly.

“Hey man, you guys might want to follow me, but I follow him.” Michael nodded to Max and reproved the Skins for appearances sake.

Ross hesitated and then nodded his agreement and looking towards Max, said.

“I’ll come out and report in no more than five minutes; but if I don’t make it back out, do not come in after us.”

“We may not be able to come in for you, but we will come in for our friends, no matter what and that might give you a chance to escape if things go badly.” Max said.

“Man, you haven’t changed.” Ross said, derisively. “You could never see the big picture; never had the patience, to take things slowly and safely. If you die here, young king, who will be left to free your people on Antar? You should just go in after Kivar and his followers; you can’t save the Humans And kill Kivar, he’s too strong. Even with our help; without the four-square, you can’t do both.”

Even though Ava had made sure that these Skins were on their sides, both Max and Michael especially, had been leery of telling them that they Did have the four-square. Now they looked at each other and then the others; everyone could tell what the two boys wanted to do and gave tiny nods of their heads.

“Ava; show ‘em.” Max said quietly and she dropped her mind-warp of the twelve friendly Skins so they were able to see all six of them. “But we do have the four-square, plus some extra help.” Max said. “How do our chances look now?”

“Considering that you have a traitor in your midst, I’d say they’re rotten!” Ross exclaimed, raising a glowing hand towards Ava.

The four-square tensed; Isabel and Michael, ready to destroy; Max and Ava, ready to defend and Liz and Kyle on alert.

“This is not Tess, who we know was a traitor; this is Ava, her duplicate and just to set the record straight, this is my sister Isabel; she is Not Valondra.” Max said firmly. “These two are trustworthy souls if ever there were. We know their hearts and they know ours, so don’t even think about harming one hair on either of their heads.” Ross and the other Skins nodded their heads.

“Ava came to warn us that her fellow Dupes, Lonnie and Rath, who Are evil, may be here or on their way.” Kyle said.

“We’re wasting time out here; are you going to help us or not?” Isabel asked and the Skins nodded, before they slipped away to take up positions inside the old factory.

“Ava, could you mind-warp the…bad Skins not to see the…good Skins? For that matter, can you mind-warp our family inside so they don’t see anything alien…just the three of us coming in to try and save them?” Max asked.

“Max, the last thing Ava needs to worry about is mind-warping our parents!” Isabel exclaimed. “They’ve already seen too much that we can’t make them forget; they will want answers after this, no matter what we do. Mind-warping the Skins so they only see the three of us and don’t see the…good Skins will be hard enough.” Ava was nodding.

“Izzy’s right, Max.” Ava said quietly. “Fightin’ the black-hats is tough enough. I’s can try to warp them so’s they can’t see the good Skins but warpin’ the family will be too much…an’ if Kivar comes he an’ Nicholas are too strong to warp.” Ava warned.

“All right.” Max agreed, wishing he could wipe his hands over his face, wearily, but closed his eyes for a few moments instead; seeing all his efforts to keep their secret from their parents going down the tubes. He took a deep breath before continuing. “I’ll try to warn them not to react to anything they see. We can’t let them tell the Skins that there are more than just the three of us.”

Just then, Ross came back out and urgently walked over to them and addressed Max.

“We counted six of Kivar’s people and they have your friends tied to chairs in the center of the building and the chairs are chained to a column. The Skins are in a group away from the hostages so if you go in quickly maybe they won’t have time to make a move against your friends. The only clinker is one of my people says that she can see two others hiding in the shadows on the other side of the room, behind the hostages.” Max nodded, thoughtfully.

“If Ava can mind-warp Kivar’s people to only see the three of us.” Max indicated himself, Isabel and Michael. “Can you…catch and hold or…kill them if you have to?” Ross nodded.

“There aren’t enough of us to hold all of those Skins without the chance of them breaking free; killing them would be easier and less risky in the end.”

Max hesitated while glancing around at his friends and then back to Ross.

“All right; I wish we didn’t have to take them from behind; there’s not honor in that, but with our family being held as hostages, we have no choice. Do it as quickly as possible, so we can all get out of there in one piece; we’ll cover you.”

“What if Nicholas and or Kivar come, Max?” Michael asked and Max hesitated again.

“Do you think with all of us fighting together, we could kill them?” Max asked.

“If we can get rid of the other Skins first and everything goes really well; I think we’d have a pretty good chance.” Ross said.

“Okay we take them out if we can, but getting the hostages out safely is the first priority. Come on we have to get in there before Kivar arrives.” Max was feeling the urgency of time passing. “Get to your place and then we’ll come in.”

Ross nodded and then slipped inside.

“I wish we could just slip inside and not be seen like he just did.” Isabel said.

“We’ll go in the same way, but since our goal is the people being held out in the middle of the factory, I’m betting that we’ll be noticed.” Max said. “Come on, let’s go…and no matter what, don’t any of you break the circle. Liz stay within the circle and Kyle stay nearby so we can protect you.”

Everyone nodded as they made their way to an opening in the wall that they could all fit through, holding hands as they were. They moved cautiously and quietly through the gloom; only small patches of light coming through grime-encrusted windows and cracks in the walls and roof. They looked around them but could see no one else; either friend or foe, as they moved forward into the enormous, high vaulted space. Finally they saw the five hostages; tied to chairs out in the middle of the floor, like sitting ducks.

“Max!” Isabel exclaimed quietly as she saw her parents and husband for the first time.

“Yeah, I know; everyone ready, Ava?” Everyone nodded and Ava gave a small smile, indicating that her mind-warp was in good shape.

As they drew closer, they could hear the adults asking Maria questions and Maria trying her best to answer without giving too much away. At this time they also became aware of shadowy figures moving towards them.

“Ava.” Max said quietly. “Are they warped so I can warn our family?” Ava just nodded.

Max could hear his mother asking a question; whether he had found out anymore about his real parents or where he came from.

“Mom why don’t you ask me those questions after we get you out of here? Okay everyone; no questions, no exclamations, just listen to me for a minute. I don’t have a lot of time. We and some friends of ours are here to uh…rescue you, but these bad guys can’t see them and they can only see the three of us; Michael, Isabel and I. Don’t ask; I can’t explain right now. You are probably going to see some strange things soon; it is Very important that you not react, call out or give away what we are doing. We will answer all your questions later, but first we have to get you out of here and we need your help, okay?” The captives nodded their heads, but just as the six kids turned away, Jesse opened his mouth to speak.

“You better believe you’ll be answering questions and explaining everything to us…Isabel. To think I thought I knew you…loved you…” He said reproachfully; angrily.

“Jesse!” Isabel exclaimed in a small voice.

“No time for that, here they come and their hands are already glowing.” Michael said and readied his powers to strike back.

Just then, five of the six kids heard a familiar voice.

“Hey, Dupe.”

“Rath, Lonnie,” Max said calmly. ‘So they have arrived.’ He thought and turned so that they stood perpendicular to the oncoming line of aliens; neither their backs nor their fronts facing them but close enough to the captives to be able to spread the shield over them as well.

“Who’s in charge, here?” Max called out and one man stepped a little ahead of the group who were advancing on them.

“I am; name’s Sergeant Ba’lath.”

“Well…Ba’lath is it? You took these people from their homes and left us messages to come here…so here we are. Let them go; the three of us are who you really want.”

Max tried not to look beyond the lead Skin and give away the location of the invisible, but approaching Michael-followers. Their allies moved in quickly and managed to kill four of the six Skins, as well as Rath and Lonnie. ‘Could it really be that easy?’ Max asked himself as he turned his head in time to see two Skins come up behind the Dupes and place glowing hands to their backs, killing them almost immediately. Max thought it interesting that two people, who had had such an impact on and were such threats to his life, could be eliminated so easily. Meanwhile, one Skin was attacking another, until four were killed and burst into a flurry of flakes. But somehow the remaining two; Sergeant Ba’lath and one other, felt or sensed the flakes, which were floating down around and onto them and jumped aside. The Skins behind them missed their targets and fell slightly forward, their arms flailing out to catch their balance, brushed the Sergeant and his one remaining soldier.

Both enemy Skins dropped into a forward roll; taking them safely away from their attackers and then came up firing. First, in the direction from which they had been bumped, then they aimed towards the captives and started firing at them too. Max and the others moved to stand in front of them; Max’s shield already deployed. Within the four-square, Ava managed to send out a mind-warp making the two Skins think that they and the captives were at least ten feet from where they actually were. Most energy bolts were aimed to their right but some were still shot out in different directions; the enemy must have known that they were being mind-warped and no longer trusted what they saw.

The Michael-followers were firing at the two Skins, trying to bring them down so they could actually be killed, but the two men kept moving and shooting, which kept everyone else except the four-square, on the move as well. Michael and Isabel had fired off a few bolts, through Max’s protective shield, but also had been unable to hit either of the Skins.

“Kyle, try to free our families, but stay behind my shield and keep them there too until I give the word to get them out of here.” Kyle nodded and inched his way to the captives, bringing his Swiss Army knife out of his pocket.

The Humans behind them were doing their best to follow Max’s orders but cries and shouts were still being shocked out of their throats. The whole scene was just so incredible and unbelievable to them and yet it was all playing out in front of them. From where he sat watching, Philip remembered the argument he and Max had had, out in the fishing boat, back before Christmas.

”I’m your son.”

“With secrets and my biggest fear is that they’re terrible secrets; that you’re in trouble and I can’t help…”

He had been right, Max was in terrible trouble, but Max was also correct, to a point; he couldn’t help his son… Philip watched; as Max brought his friends to stand in front of them and a shield go up between themselves and what looked to be the two remaining…bad guys. It was clear to Philip that Max was in charge by the way the others looked to him and the way he held himself. It was clear too, that Max was the one producing that shield; he was the only one who tensed or winced whenever the shield took a hit. And despite their troubled relationship, Philip felt pride in his son, as he faced his enemies.

Diane watched her son and daughter for a few moments and then switched her attention to Liz Parker and the other, smaller girl. Who was she? She looked remarkably like that Tess Harding, whom she had met once and yet who was so different that Diane couldn’t believe that she was Tess. The girl had her head slightly turned and from where she sat, Diane could see that she had her eyes closed and a frown of concentration marring her forehead. Liz Parker on the other hand, was constantly moving within the little circle, the four kids formed, touching the back or shoulder of one or another of the four; seemingly adding her strength to theirs, although Diane wasn’t sure how she knew that. How was Liz involved in all of this; was it love for Max, which gave her the strength to stay by his side?

‘She looks like a warrior queen!’ Jesse thought, as he kept his eyes on his now…mysterious…wife. Even though the four kids held each other’s hands, he could tell when Isabel sent out an energy bold of her own; appearing in front of her first, before streaking out toward its target. He wasn’t sure what he was feeling anymore; his emotions were so mixed up; love, pride, worry, hurt and anger all warred within his heart.

Amy DeLuca split her attention between her daughter, who sat next to her and Michael Guerin, who was fighting this very strange battle right in front of her. She could here Maria muttering to herself.

“Come on, Spaceboy; you can hit those guys! Oh you cheese-head; aim more to the right!”

‘Spaceboy? Could that lost little boy, with the prickly exterior and marshmallow interior, who loved her daughter, actually be an alien? That Would explain how he was able to shoot out energy bolts at their captives.’ Amy thought with a silent chuckle. She remembered that ridiculous conversation they had had; about the garbage disposal last spring…’Had Michael been worrying that he would have to return to his own planet and leave Maria behind? About learning to open up his heart; while fearing that it would be crushed if he could not stay with her?’

Finally the enemy sergeant came into range of Michael and he lit off a massive shot; hitting the Skin squarely in the chest and yet the wounded man only dropped to his knees and fired back at Michael. Isabel caught the Skin’s energy burst and deflected it back at its owner, but with her added power behind it. The energy weapon hit the Skin in the abdomen this time and shoved him to the floor; three good Skins scrambled over to him and hit him hard in the back; breaking the husk’s seal and turning the alien into a cloud of flakes. The last Skin was dispatched a few seconds later and a deep silence fell over the old building.

All of the captive’s minds, except Maria’s to some extent, were totally befuddled with what they had just witnessed. Questions ran around in their head and finally, Mr. Evans could keep those questions inside no longer.

“Max, what the hell just happened here? Who were those people, who captured us? Who were those other people who helped you…kill them? What do they want with you…all of you?” Philip looked around at all of the kids, as he massaged his wrists, which Kyle had finally cut free.

“Dad, we’ll answer all of your questions, but let’s get out of here first.” Max said, urgently, trying to shepherd everyone out of the building, but Philip was still in shock and didn’t move.

“They were going to…kill…you…weren’t they; but why?”

“Maybe because they didn’t do a good enough job of killing us the last time?” Michael answered sarcastically, as he also tried to get everyone to move towards the door.

Before anyone could respond to Michael’s comment, ask another question or escape the building, a rush of energy burst into the old factory through a hole in the roof, behind where the captives still sat. It looked like a giant, white tube, running from roof to floor and coursed with huge amounts of energy. Out of it stepped two figures; one, the height and look of a young teenage boy; the second, a handsome blond man, with sharp eyes and facial features. As soon as they stepped away from the tube, it disappeared. Everyone there, except for Mr. and Mrs. Evans and Amy DeLuca recognized at least one of the two men.

“Kivar, I told you that the next time I saw you, I would kill you and that goes for the runt, Nicholas too!” Isabel yelled.

TBC Feedback Please!

posted on 8-Feb-2002 12:49:27 PM by jane
posted on 11-Feb-2002 7:12:47 AM by jane
***Sorry for the delay. I had already written up through part 5 when I started posting and now that I have run out of pre-written parts I am writing as quickly as I can! You know how it is...I know what I want to have happen, but how do I write it?? Anyway, thanks for your patience and on with the show! Love, jane***

What Is Max Hiding? Part 8

“Kivar, I told you that the next time I saw you, I would kill you and that goes for the runt, Nicholas too!” Isabel yelled.

“Now, now, Valondra.” Kivar said patronizingly.

“What’s wrong, Kivar is the body you snatched giving you grief?” Isabel threw back.

“This is my specially tailored new husk, Valondra; like it? You certainly liked the body it was modeled after; the last time is was here.”

“Hey, you’re the creep who tried to hurt Isabel and drugged me on our honeymoon!” Jesse yelled and Kyle and Maria caught hold of his arms to keep him from launching himself at the alien leader.

“Kyle.” Max said urgently to his friend. “You and Maria get everyone out of here now; take them…somewhere safe. Got your cell-phone? We’ll call you.”

Both Kyle and Maria wanted to argue and stay with their friends, but they knew that they had to get the parents and Jesse to safety.

“Why do you call Isabel, Valondra?” Jesse yelled, as he was being led towards the door and Kivar grinned maliciously back at him.

“Because that was her name…when she was my lover!” Kyle and Maria had to tighten their hold then, to make Jesse come with them, away from Kivar.

Neither Kyle, Maria nor Max had counted on the stubbornness of those parents and lone husband though. They refused to move beyond the factory door, which led to the outside and freedom. They stayed, watched and listened; able to hear faintly, but clearly, what was being said on the other side of the enormous room.

“Don’t bother trying to mind-warp us, Your Majesty.” Kivar said mockingly, as he turned to Max and Ava. “I can easily see your four-square, made up with a girl I know can’t be Tess Harding. What’s your name, duplicate?” He asked, but both Ava and Max ignored the question.

“Did Kivar just say that he only sees the four-square; does that mean he can’t see us?” Ross asked quietly and then tested his theory by waiving his hands in the air. “No, Ava must still be mind-warping them. Let’s move into better positions.”

“Where is Tess…and the Granolith? Did the traitor you placed among us fulfill her objective by brining it to you?” Max asked instead of letting Ava answer Kivar’s question.

Kivar looked surprised by Max’s question and lack of knowledge; but he felt supremely confident in his power and the outcome of this meeting, so he decided to be gracious and answer the question.

“Tess wasn’t my…pawn; the shape-shifter, Nicholas tells me you call Nascedo, was; and Tess was his. But to answer your question; no Tess was unable to bring the Granolith to me, well not in any good condition that would count. You should have seen by its trajectory, that something was wrong with it. We immediately picked up the signal of its launch and when we saw that it was in trouble, used the transporter to catch it and bring it back to Antar. But between its own malfunction and the force placed on it by the transporter, it was practically falling apart when it arrived. We pulled Tess out of it right before it blew up; luckily we had all moved into the control room, before it did, because it vaporized itself and almost everything in that room as well. We were never able to figure out what went wrong with it though, since there was nothing left.”

“Gee, what a shame you weren’t a little bit slower.” Michael mumbled sarcastically.

“So Tess is on Antar? I’m surprised you didn’t bring her with you to see your victory over us.” Max said, trying not to smile at Michael’s comment.

“Your homicidal girlfriend is dead!” Nicholas spat out. “She lived just long enough for us to find out what she had been up to, since I saw her last in New York; busy little bee!” Nicholas and Kivar chuckled together as they shared their little joke.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
‘So Tess is dead?’ Philip wondered. ‘But what is this thing they call the Granolith and where is this place they call Antar?’
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“Meaning you mind-raped her in her last few moments of life.” Max clarified. As hard as he tried, he couldn’t feel any remorse for Tess, after everything she had done.

“Tit for tat.” Nicholas said. “She killed all of my Skins that day in Roswell, when we had all of you at our mercy.”

“I’ve always wondered how you survived that day.” Max said. “You should have been killed with the rest of your people, but then you showed up for the summit meeting in New York.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
‘New York? A summit meeting? Was that what Max was doing in New York; attending a summit…hey aren’t summit meetings held between presidents, prime ministers and…kings? Kivar called Max “Your Majesty”…Is Max a…king?’ Philip wondered as the fascinating conversation across the room continued.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
“What; are there more of you kept in storage, a closet full of duplicates?” Max asked Nicholas mockingly.

“No, that was Tess’ little object lesson for me.” Nicholas said. “She didn’t want to be handed over to Kivar as a captive; she wanted to be the one who brought all of you to Kivar; plus the little detail that she was supposed to be pregnant with your heir when she did. That was the deal Kivar made with Nascedo, so long ago. She let me live in return for our letting all of you go, so she could work her wiles on you.”

“But then why was the summit meeting called, just a few weeks later?” Neither Nicholas or Kivar wanted to answer that question, so Ava piped up.

“Yo, I’s heard the runt here, talkin’ to Lonnie an’ Rath. The other big cheeses in the ‘hood was yellin’ at Kivar to end the war. They’s didn’t know ‘bout the deal between him an’ Nascedo, so’s they insisted on the meetin’. Lonnie an’ Rath just wanted to go home, so’s they backed Nicholas…and when you wouldn’t return the Granolith, those two an’ Nicholas got so mad they tried to kill yous and mind-raped Tess. They were still gripin’ ‘bout how that didn’t work, when I’s went back to New York.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
‘Oh no! Max was almost killed while he was in New York?’ Diane wondered in horror, as she watched her son and daughter face their enemies.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
“Zan and Tess are dead and now so are Lonnie and Rath.” Max said letting Kivar think that the four-square was responsible for the deaths of the dupes and Kivar’s men. “What do you plan to do with the rest of us; that is if you can catch us?” Max asked.

“Oh I don’t think we’ll have to kill you…for the time being and I’m fairly certain that you’ll voluntarily give yourselves up to me; after all…you wouldn’t want anything to happen to your son!” Kivar smirked as over by the door, Diane, Amy and even Maria gasped at Kivar’s threat.

‘Daddy! There’s mean people here, Daddy!’ A young voice came into Max’s mind and through their physical connection, the other three heard it too.

“Max!” Isabel exclaimed, half-frightened and half-pretending-to-be-frightened.

“I thought that you said Tess died shortly after you transported her to Antar. How could you have my son; he wouldn’t have been born yet?” Max asked, concentrating on playing his part. Kivar might think he had an ace up his sleeve, but Max knew that he held a royal flush.

“Tess was unimportant; it was your son we cared about.” Kivar explained smoothly. “We transferred him into an incubation pod and he emerged from it back in September. Don’t tell me you never received the messages he sent; I know that he made contact with you at least twice. Once in September and a second time in December; right around the time the Humans celebrate that silly holiday, Christmas.”

Ross and his people had been moving closer to Kivar and Nicholas this whole time, since Ava was able to hold her mind-warp, keeping them invisible to the enemy. Now they stood very close nearby; most of them behind the two men, listening as Max and his friends pumped Kivar for information.

“Yes, I received two messages from someone who called me daddy; but it couldn’t have been my son, since Tess was never pregnant with my child, or I’m sure, anyone else’s.” Max played his winning hand. “You see, that’s what was wrong with the Granolith; neither myself, nor my heir was inside that thing when it launched.” Max allowed himself a small smile at the look of astonishment on Kivar’s and Nicholas’ faces. “Ah finally; something the great Kivar Doesn’t know about! A fail-safe was programmed into the Granotlith; the King, Queen, or Royal Heir of Antar had to be on board…along with anyone else they chose to come with them, for the Granolith to work. Otherwise, as we saw for ourselves, the trajectory fails and the transport crashes back to the ground or blows up, killing whoever launched it without proper authorization.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
‘That’s the second time Max inferred that he is a…king and Kivar called him Your Majesty…would that make Isabel a princess?’ Jesse wondered to himself.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Max squeezed Michael’s and Isabel’s hands and then looked directly at Ross, who stood just in sight behind Kivar; as Michael and Isabel squeezed Ava’s hands to signal her that things were about to happen.

“But NOW I’m really getting tired of dealing with you two so…”

As Max yelled “NOW”, Ava dropped the mind-warp. Kivar and Nicholas had only an instant to see the other Skins who surrounded them, before those same Skins hit them hard from behind and broke the seal on their husks. The body-like shells exploded into flakes before either Kivar or Nicholas could call for the transport beam and escape, but their true energy-bodies were strong and remained; floating in the air. Just before the Skins and the royal-four started to fire energy bolts at what was left of their enemies; the larger energy-being, which had once been Kivar, built up an energy-bolt of its own.

At the last possible split-second, Isabel realized that Kivar was aiming at their friends, parents and Jesse, who were all still standing by the side door, watching. No one stood between them and Kivar’s jealous wrath. As the energy-bolt was thrown, Isabel broke away from the four-square and launched herself through the air, to take the hit, before it could touch her friends, parents, or beloved husband.

“JESSE!” She screamed, as the bolt hit her and she fell to the ground.

“ISABELE!” Jesse yelled in return as he saw his lovely wife fall and broke away from Kyle, who was trying to hold him back, and ran to the still figure of his love.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
“Oh poor Isabel and Jesse. Jesse was so angry at Isabel for having kept secrets from him; now he may never get the chance to apologize for those ill-timed words. If Isabel dies…” She hugged Maria close, placing her body between her daughter and the fighting.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
As Isabel broke away from them, Max saw everything happen in an instant and pulled the group over, to place them between Kivar and their families. At the same time, Liz moved from her central position to Isabel’s place within the circle. She took Max and Ava’s hands and lent them her power. She wasn’t able to fire or deflect energy bolts, as Isabel had, but the combined power of the four-square dipped only a little without one of its true members in her place. Michael continued to shoot straight and true, Max’s shield remained strong and Ava befuddled the senses of the two energy beings, so they could not call for the transport beam and escape. Every alien who could, continued to shoot their energy bolts at the two enemies until they finally exploded in a blinding, but soundless wave of energy.

Michael let out a great whoop of excitement as did some of the other Skins, but Ava, Max and Liz remained vigilant, looking around them.

“Are they really gone? I’ve never fought true energy beings before; is that what’s supposed to happen?” Max asked and Ross nodded, grinning.

“Yes that’s what happens…Your Majesty!” Ross said, bowing slightly in respect.

“Max, we have to see to Isabel!” Liz said urgently and Max turned away to hurry over to Isabel’s side.

“Oh no!” Max and Liz groaned at the same time, when they saw Isabel. Jesse with tears streaming out of his eyes rocked her in his arms.

“Jesse, you need to let me take a look at her.” Max said gently, but firmly.

“Don’t you come near her, you…you…whatever-you-are.” Jesse yelled. “You did this to her! Oh God, Isabel!” Jesse cried, looking from Max to the ceiling high above. He didn’t say anything though, when Liz knelt down beside them and took one of Isabel’s limp hands in both of hers.

“Yes, I am responsible but…” Max started to say in anguish, but Liz interrupted.

“Max, NO! You are Not responsible; Kivar and Nicholas did this, just like they did, back on Antar. They are responsible, not you, Max.”

“I am, Liz; well at least partly. Because of who I am; it was my responsibility to protect her.” Max countered.

“Max, it’s not as if you’ve been trained for any of this; to be a warrior…or even knew about any of this two years ago. You did your very best to do what you have not been prepared for…and now it’s time to do what you know how to do so well. She still has a pulse, Max; heal her.” Max nodded and squatted down by his sister and brother-in-law. Meanwhile their families and the Michael-followers had gathered around them.

“Jesse, you know that I’m not…a normal…person; but one thing I am, is a healer. I can heal Isabel, like no Earth doctor ever could; even if she survived the trip to a hospital, which she won’t…without my help. Please, please let me help her; she’s my sister and I love her too.”

Jesse hesitated for only a moment and then with eyes locked on Max, lowered Isabel to the floor. Max went to work; passing his hands over his sister and the horrible wound on her abdomen. Then he placed his open palm over the wound and it started to glow. He worked over Isabel for several moments and then started to struggle, as his energy began to run out.

All of a sudden, Max felt an influx of energy, but didn’t turn away from his sister, as Liz and the rest of the four-square stepped closer and placed their hands lightly on his shoulders. Slowly the wound grew smaller and then was completely healed; Max kept his hand on Isabel for a few extra moments before drawing away. Even with his friend’s help, he was sweating and breathing rapidly.

“She should be alright now; but she lost a lot of blood and life-energy. She’s going to need to rest for a while. Are the rest of you okay; Mom…Dad?”

Max looked from his parents to Maria and Amy DeLuca and then back to Jesse. Everyone nodded through their tears. Kyle came forward and hugged Ave, checking on her for himself; Maria converged on Michael.

“I don’t care if we’re not really dating; come ’ere, Spaceboy!” Maria commanded and almost threw herself into his arms.

Liz leaned over and helped Max to his feet and then put her arm around his waist to hold him steady. He put his arm around her shoulders and kissed the crown of her head.

“Ross, are your people alright?” Max asked from within the comfort of Liz’s arms.

“Yes…sir; amazingly enough, no one was hurt! It was…an honor to fight by your side…sir.” Ross bowed to Max and then moved to gather his people together so they could leave.

“Hey, where are you going?” Michael asked.

“To our homes to rest; don’t worry, we’ll be around and we’ll talk again, but right now, I think there are other things you need to take care of.” Ross nodded to the parents who were noticeably wilting under their fatigue.

“Thank you so much for all of your help; there is no way we could have defeated Kivar and Nicholas without it.” Max said earnestly and stuck out his hand to the Skin leader.

“Just doing our job, sir.” Ross said modestly, but he stuck out his hand as well and shook Max’s. “See you around, Michael.” Ross also shook Michael’s hand before he and his people left.

“I think its time for us to leave this rotten place too.” Maria said from beside Michael. “Hey, Spaceboy, do you think you could start one of those jeeps…if they didn’t leave the keys in the ignition, that is?”

“Sure.” Michael answered as he; Maria, Ava and Kyle walked over to one of the jeeps and got in. “Meet you guys at your parents’ house, Maxwell?” He asked and Max nodded after glancing over at his father.

Michael drove out of the factory, through a door Max opened for him and for his family, who followed him out to his car. Jesse, carrying a still sleeping Isabel in his arms, got into the back seat with Diane and Amy and they laid Isabel over their laps. Max, Liz and Mr. Evans got into the front seat and Max quickly started the engine, to follow the jeep that Michael was driving.

“Um I’ve just got something to say, before we get home, Max.” Mr. Evans said from the other side of Liz. “There are still a lot of questions we need to ask; maybe even more than before this crazy night started, but for now I just wanted to tell you how grateful I am that you and your friends came to rescue us. I highly doubt that the police or even the FBI could’ve handled those guys, like you did…And I wanted to tell you how…proud I am of you; I’m starting to realize the magnitude of the secrets you have carried all these years and how they must weigh on your shoulders. I don’t know if there is any way for me…for us to help you, but your mother and I are here for you, if we can.” Max had to swallow several times before he could respond, especially when he felt the grip of his mother’s hand on his shoulder…and Liz turned her sweet face to him and he saw the happy tears in her eyes.

“Uh…thanks Dad…and Mom…for that. You can have no idea of the terrors I’ve had, when I thought of you two finding out about me and Isabel. Now it will be a relief, to get it all out!” Max said as they drove towards…home.

TBC Feedback Please! All parts to this story are being posted on the Repost Board. Thank you, jane.

posted on 11-Feb-2002 4:11:59 PM by jane
posted on 12-Feb-2002 6:49:23 AM by jane
"That was truly excellent, but is that the end of the story? I would love to see what the parents all have to say or what will happen on Antar now that Kivar is gone and what happened to Tess and Kyle's child?"
Answers: NO, this is Not the end! Please Stay Tuned for the Talk with the parents and a surprise visit...!! At least two more parts!

"Tess and Kyle's child"?? or do you mean Tess and Max's child? Please reread part 8, there Never was one!!
"...remember how Max explained that only the king or queen or heir could use the granolith? Well then....who is the queen if it isn't tess or ava? Liz?? I hope you decide to reveal at least your version of this answer soon too! Key word: soon!
Answer: The queen is whomever is married to the the general terms of the Granolith's fail-safe. Tess/Ava was Max/Zan's wife and queen in thier past lives but only because it was an arranged marriage. She would Never have been his Love or Soulmate! Who Max's queen And soulmate will be in This life will be whomever he chooses...and who chooses him in return!! he, he, he!! ~jane

Hope that answers your questions!

I'm still working on part 9; I'll get it out as soon as I can, but it's going to be a few days, sorry!

Thanks so much for the Fabulous feedback! ~jane

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 12-Feb-2002 7:02:10 AM ]
posted on 17-Feb-2002 7:27:34 AM by jane
***Once again, sorry for the delay in posting this next part! This was supposed to include "the talk", but I'm having trouble with it, so I broke off this first part to give to you in the meantime! Hope you like it, please let me know! Love, jane ***

What Is Max Hiding? Part 9

Max drove to his parents’ home; Liz was sitting next to him holding his right hand when he didn’t need it to drive with and his father sat on the other side of her. His mother, Amy and Jesse all sat in back, with the still sleeping Isabel stretched across their laps and held securely in Jesse’s arms. Max’s mind kept going over all that had just happened in the last hour. Was that all the time it had taken to fight the Skins, kill Kivar and Nicholas and rescue their friends? Max wondered. But now they were all on their way to do something even more difficult than they had just done; tell their parents the truth about who they were. Up ahead, Michael pulled the Skin’s jeep over to the side of the road and stuck his left arm out the window, motioning for Max to pull up beside him.

“What’s the matter, Michael?” Max asked.

“I was thinking that I should go to my place and get our…stuff…you know, if we’re going to answer all their questions.” Michael nodded towards all the adults in Max’s car. Max nodded.

“Good idea Michael, but hurry back, I don’t want to have to face all of them by myself for long!”

Michael gave a smirk in reply and then pulled away from the curb to turn right at the next corner, while Max turned left. When they arrived at his parents’ home, Max helped Liz out first before stepping to the left passenger door and opening it.

“Jesse, let me take Isabel so the three of you can get out.” Max said and Jesse hesitated for a second before nodding and helping Max to pick up his sister from her husband’s arms.

Once Diane, Amy and Jesse had gotten out of the car, Max hesitated before giving his sister back into Jesse’s waiting arms.

“Jesse…Isabel wanted to tell you about us…before she married you; she loves you and trusts you but Michael and I…mostly me wouldn’t let her. We’ve kept our secret for so long; telling no one …except for a few who learned because of…things…that have happened…Please don’t be mad at her, she didn’t want to lie to you…”

Jesse gazed down at his lovely wife for several moments and then back to Max and nodded but said nothing more, before he took Isabel back into his arms. The group, who had all listened to what Max told Jesse turned and walked to the front door of the Evans’ house.

“I need a drink, would anyone else like one?” Philip said as soon as he entered his home.

“I need to use the bathroom.” Amy said just as quickly and Diane pointed her in the right direction. “A scotch, neat would be great when I come back, Philip thanks!”

“You got it, Amy.” Philip said before taking drink orders from his wife and son-in-law, who was gently laying Isabel down on the sofa.

“Max could we go…somewhere for a few minutes; be alone while we wait for the others to arrive?” Liz asked.

“You read my mind, Liz! I need a few minutes before the inquisition begins.” Max said smiling. “Would you like something to drink?”

“Yeah a cherry coke would be great.” Liz said in relief.

As Max poured drinks for himself and Liz, he looked around his old home; his parents and Amy were grouped around the small bar while Philip mixed drinks. The sign, which the Skins had left behind, was still there and the pieces of the smashed phone, were still scattered across the floor.

“Hey Liz how are your power levels; do you think you could wipe away that sign on the wall, while I put the phone back together?” Max asked quietly, as he handed her, her drink.

“Well I could try to anyway. What do I do?” Liz asked, curious.

“Like you did with the stones; close your eyes and imagine your powers building up inside of you, like a dim light becoming brighter. Then see that power being channeled out through your right hand and visualize those ugly words going away and the wall color going back to what it was.”

“Okay let me try.” Liz said as she closed her eyes and did as Max had instructed. When she passed her hand over the wall, the letters disappeared…from the first half of the sign but then the other half of the letters only faded a little as her energy ran out.

“Hey that was great, Liz!” Max congratulated her.

“I was only able to make half of it disappear.” Liz said critically.

“But you matched the paint color perfectly.” Max encouraged. “Besides you’ve just fought a battle and you’re tapped out, don’t worry. You’re a beginner, but your powers will grow if you practice; just think of it like building muscle-tone, you gotta keep working at it if you want them to grow.”

Max waived his hand over the remaining letters and they disappeared. Then he used his powers to gather together the pieces of the wireless phone until he could hold the reassembled unit in his hand and heard a dial-tone.

“Max, Liz!” Diane exclaimed with a smile, having just seen what the two kids had done. “I saw you trying to help Max and the others when they were…fighting…but I didn’t really think about you’re having your own…gifts, Liz.”

“Uh well, they’re just developing, Mom…listen can we wait until everyone else gets here before we start answering all your questions, please?” Max asked.

“Oh yes of course, dear.” Diane said.

“Thanks, Mom; Liz and I are going to go…um sit out on the porch-swing until the others come, okay?”

“Sure, you two go and relax for a few minutes.” Diane nodded.

Max said no more, but grinned as he took Liz’s hand and led her out the front door. He sat down first on the wide swing and then drew Liz down onto his lap and into a tight hug.

“Oh Liz, I love you so much and if anything had happened to you…but I’m so proud of you; the way you helped us all within the four-square, sharing your energy…and then when you stepped into Isabel’s place and kept the four-square going…man you were fantastic!” Max’s lips swooped down and locked themselves onto Liz’s eager mouth for a long, deep kiss.

“Mmmm Max, I love you too! When I think about it, you could have been hurt or killed too. After all, it’s you Kivar wanted to kill. And I’m so proud of you too; the way you led us and dealt with Ross and his Skins.”

Liz was saying all of this in between sweet kisses and her hands started wandering over Max as well. She savored the feeling of his shoulder muscles, the angles and planes of his handsome face and his hair; Liz loved to run her hands through his soft, clean hair.

“Max could you please let your hair grow longer; like it was back in September, before you went to L.A.? As great as it looks now, I used to love running my hands through your longer, shaggier strands…and those bangs you used to have looked so cute, I always loved brushing them out of your eyes!”

“You liked my hair longer, huh?” Max asked with a grin and saw Liz nod. “Then I’ll have to see what I can do; after all, I love running my hands through your gorgeous long hair too!” Max answered before claiming her lips again and his restless fingers continued to comb through Liz’s shimmering veil of hair.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Meanwhile in the living room, Jesse was taking a big swig of his cold beer, while sitting on the coffee table by Isabel’s side. Every once in a while, his hand would reach out and smooth her hair away from her face, glide over her lips, or stroke over her cheek. As he did so, Isabel’s eyelids began to flutter.

“Mmm, Jesse?” Isabel asked in a soft voice and with confusion in her eyes as she slowly woke up.

“Sweetheart, how’re you feeling?” Jesse asked almost holding his breath.

“Kinda stiff and sore; what happened?” Isabel woke up some more and looked around her. “Why’re we at Mom and Dad’s?” She asked and then suddenly sat up gasping, as her memory came back. “Jesse; Mom, Dad! Kivar, Nicholas! Oh man, Jesse; are you okay?” Isabel’s arms reached for him and Jesse switched his seat from the coffee table to the edge of the sofa by her hip and gathered his wife into his strong, loving arms.

“I’m fine honey; we’re all fine, thanks to you and, and everyone else; see, you parents and Amy DeLuca are all there having a drink at the table.”

“The others; where are they, they’re okay aren’t they…Max?” Isabel asked looking around again.

“They’re all fine. Max and Liz are out on the porch-swing; Michael, Maria, Kyle and the other girl…Ava, said they needed to pick something up from Michael’s apartment.” Isabel turned away from Jesse and let her arms fall away from him so Jesse would lay her back down as tears started running down her cheeks. “Isabel, what is it; what’s wrong, are you in pain?”

“You were so angry at me when we arrived at the cheese factory, how can you be so nice to me now?” Isabel asked in a small voice, remembering details now.

“Yes, I was angry.” Jesse admitted. “It was such a shock to be abducted by those strange men; who seemed to know you, or about you…your past…I knew you had secrets Isabel, secrets that for some reason you didn’t trust me enough to tell me…And in keeping those secrets, you’ve lied to me…and that really hurts, Isabel.” Jesse stopped speaking, dropping his head and closing his eyes for a moment. “But then you risked your life to save mine…and your parents’, I’m sure…and you were so badly wounded, you almost died…I realized that you are my life, I love you so much and I want you to tell me all about yourself. But not because my feelings are hurt, or because I was angry; but because I want to know every wonderful and fascinating detail about my lovely wife and life-partner!”

“Oh Jesse really?” Isabel sat back up with hope shining in her eyes. “Jesse, I wanted to tell you the truth about me and I did trust you, but…we’ve kept our secret for so long…”

“I know sweetheart, Max told me how he and Michael wouldn’t let you tell me.” Jesse said.

“He did? Oh.” Isabel said thoughtfully as she put her arms back around his neck to hug him and be hugged in return.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Outside, Michael and the others pulled up in the jeep, which Michael had turned bright red and on which he had changed the license plate as well. After they all piled out they noticed the young couple sitting on the porch-swing, necking.

“Hey yo! Cornballs!” Ava called out but Max and Liz only stopped kissing with reluctance, their arms still around each other.

“That was quick.” Max griped. “You couldn’t have driven a little slower, Michael?”

“Hey I want to get this whole thing over with.” Michael replied and Max nodded.

“Yeah, okay you’re right let’s get this over with.” Max said, helping Liz up off his lap, then stood up himself and they all walked into the house. “Why don’t all of you grab some sodas while I check on Isabel.” Max suggested and everyone followed him into the house.

TBC Feedback Please! All parts to this story are being posted on the Repost Board. Thank you, jane.

posted on 17-Feb-2002 5:37:02 PM by jane
posted on 23-Feb-2002 7:21:55 AM by jane
***Sorry it's taking so long to get these last parts out! I'm working on part 11; hopefully the last chapter and will post that as soon as possible! Hope you like "the talk"...Please let me know! ~jane ***

What Is Max Hiding? Part 10

Max entered the house with Liz and their friends following behind and went over to check on his sister, who was awake and sitting up in her husband’s arms.

“How’re you doing Isabel?” Max asked as the others stood nearby.

“Just a little sore.” Isabel answered, swinging her legs around to the front. “I guess I acted kind of dumb, breaking out of the four-square, and then ending up getting shot, so you had to heal me…” She said quietly, looking down at her hands.

“Well, since you saved everyone’s lives and Liz was able to take your place; we killed the bad guys and I was able to heal you …I guess you’re forgiven…but to risk your life like that…if I had lost you…” Max had to stop talking because he was getting all choked up; so instead, he bent over and hugged his sister and kissed her on the cheek.

“You’re okay, Isabel?” Michael double-checked and received a smile and a nod. “Good.” He said, while the others smiled their relief at their friend’s recovery before all of them trooped into the kitchen to get drinks to fortify themselves for the questions ahead.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

While the friends were checking up on Isabel in the living room, the parents sat at the table, talking, while sipping their drinks. Diane noticed Amy’s hand come up and start to pat at her chest.

“Amy, are you alright?” Diane asked.

“Oh man, is my heart ever pounding away!” Amy exclaimed. “I guess reaction is starting to set in. Everything happened so quickly; there was no time to understand anything or ask questions, much less get any answers. One minute I was safe at home with my daughter, the next thing I know, strange men are busting down my door and threatening me and Maria…” Amy drifted off for a second but then came back to what she was saying; her fingers tapping a steady beat. “…Just had such a sense of deja-vu for a moment …oh well…what was I saying? Oh yeah…the next thing I know the two of us have been whisked away to some old factory and tied up together with you two and Jesse Ramirez. Then your kids and their friends come in as if they know exactly what’s going on and then sparks begin to fly…literally! These energy bolt-looking things are flying back and forth and people are just disappearing in a poof of…of flaky…stuff…and then all the ‘bad guys’…” Amy wagged two fimgers on each side of her head. “…seem to have been killed. But then two more men show up, just popping out of their glowing transporter tube, like a cross between Star Trek and Sliders; and they seam to know your kids and your kids seam to know them and then even more sparks fly and Kyle and Maria are trying to keep us from helping, but I guess we would have just been in the way and I’m trying to stay calm about this, but What The HELL JUST HAPPENED Tonight?” Amy ended up yelling and then gulping down the rest of her scotch and thunking the empty tumbler down on the table.

Her yells attracted the attention of the group who had just come into the house, checked on Isabel and entered the kitchen to pour some drinks.

“Amy, Amy we know exactly what you’re feeling here.” Philip said through clenched teeth; Amy’s outburst had ripped the top off of his control as well. The alcohol he had drunk added its share to the emotions which were crammed to the back of his brain and down in his churning stomach.

“Yes, we all want answers, but remember what you said in the car, Philip.” Jesse reminded his father-in-law and everyone stared at him and his mild manner, remembering how angry Jesse had been back at the factory.

“What, what did you say in the car, Daddy?” Isabel asked.

“That we, your mother and I are so grateful to all of you for risking your lives to come and rescue us…and that we are proud of you and that we love both you and Max very much.” Philip cleared his throat. “But Amy is right; we would really like to hear you explain to us what the hell happened tonight; what has been going on…at least since Utah.”

“Yeah, I’d like to hear about who exactly Tess was and what you guys were saying about her at the factory; I only understood about a half of it.” Jesse said.

“What have you and Michael really been up to, those times you went on those road trips of yours?” Amy asked her daughter.

“It’s obvious that you’ve learned more about yourselves since the kitchen fire, Max.” Diane said softly. “Won’t you please tell us about what you’ve learned; what All of this is about? What was so important in New York and L.A.? We all love you and we will continue to love you, no matter what you tell us now.” Diane looked at the other adults who nodded their agreement; Amy, after opening her mouth to say something, but then closing it again.

“Okay everyone have a seat, please.” Max said as he reached for Liz’s hand, which was already reaching for his and grasped it tightly as they snuggled together in an upholstered chair.

“Wait, shouldn’t Liz’s parents and Kyle’s father be here for this?” Amy asked.

“NO!” Almost all the kids said at once.

“Um, no, Mrs. DeLuca, I don’t want my parents to know about any of this; they aren’t involved and knowing about us will only put them in danger. Maybe someday there will be a need for them to know, but I’ll be the one to tell them, if necessary. Please, don’t any of you betray our secret to anyone else outside of this group here tonight…except for the Sheriff, I mean, Mr. Valenti; he already knows about us.”

“He does? How did he find out?” Amy asked.

“We’ll tell you when we get to that point in the story, Mrs. DeLuca.” Kyle said and Amy subsided.

“As you may have guessed already, Isabel, Michael, Ava and I aren’t from around here; we were in the ’47 crash…” Max started to tell their story but was immediately interrupted by the adults’ reactions.

“I’m married to an alien?” Jesse asked and took a pull from his beer bottle.

“Well honey, that’s better than my being a witch isn’t it?” Isabel asked.

“Uhmmm yeah sure Isabel; being an alien beats being a witch any day!” Jesse answered.

“You’re dating an alien; a fifty year old alien, who just happens to look like he’s a teenager?” Amy cried.

“No Mom, Michael really is just a teenaged, um alien; Nicholas is the fifty-something, teenage-looking alien.”

“But you never dated Nicholas, right…and he’s dead, right?” Amy tried to get it all clear in her head.

“Yeah Mom; I never dated the runt, who is even shorter than me…and he’s dead. We’ll explain everything in just a minute, okay Mom?” Amy nodded.

“I guess I’m too rooted in the real world and too used to seeing movies with computer-generated special-effects in them. Even after everything that happened tonight, I wasn’t thinking ‘oh no we’re being invaded by aliens’. But I guess your being aliens answers a lot!”

“Oh my, I can hardly wait to hear your whole story! But no matter where you’re from, I, your father and I, still love you as if you were our own children.” Diane said and Philip nodded.

“Thanks, thanks Mom and Dad!” Max said in relief and Isabel beamed her hundred-watt smile.

“Let’s get on with telling our story then.” Michael said and the others nodded.

They took turns as they covered the crash, how their protectors got them away from the military and placed them in the pod-chamber. Ava touched lightly on how she and the Dupes grew up in New York. Isabel told about the night she and Max had been found and Max told about growing up, learning the basics of their powers, what those powers were and about living life from behind a tree. Liz and Maria took up the story by covering the fateful shooting at the Crashdown and how they and Alex had learned the truth about their friends. Michael showed the healing stones and explained how they had been found and how they worked. Max and Liz showed the two orbs and explained how she and Max had searched for one of them, that night they hadn’t come home. Kyle found himself telling the story about Tess; what he knew of her and what he had been told about what she had done to everyone and about her obsession with the four-square’s destiny.

Tears started to flow from Diane’s eyes when Isabel explained about Max’s abduction and treatment by the FBI; Max just kept gazing deeply into Liz’s loving eyes and holding onto her hands as the story was told; only nodding or shaking his head in answer to any questions. Kyle piped up to tell how Max had saved his life and how they had gotten rid of Pierce and shut down the FBI’s special unit.

“Oh Max, no wonder you were having nightmares that summer and no wonder that psychiatrist we sent you to was unable to help you; there was no way you could tell anyone…outside your little group of friends, what had happened.”

“I’m okay, Mom, but that was only the beginning of what was to come.” Max said before they picked up their story again.

For the time being, all the kids skipped over what they had learned in the pod-chamber when they received the message from Max and Isabel’s mother. The concept of destiny and Tess’ obsession with it made it too bitter a topic to share.

“Last fall after all the stuff with Pierce and his special unit, our…alien…enemies found us and it was quite a shock for us to find out that two of our four duplicates were working with them.” Max said.

“Now we’re getting to a part of your story that I can relate to.” Philip said, sitting up straight. “Were those guys you fought tonight, these enemies you’re mentioning now? Who were the other guys who were helping you? Where are they from and for that matter, do you know where you were originally from all those years ago?”

“Our enemies go by the name Skins and even though they come from the same planet we do, they are a different species from us. Those people who helped us are also Skins, but they have a different political agenda than Kivar and his Skins do…we’ll explain that later.” Max explained. “We haven’t mentioned our planet, Antar, because before we met the Dupes we didn’t know much about it.”

“Wait a minute, what I don’t understand is why do you all have twins and why do you call them duplicates?” Jesse asked.

There was a lot of eye contact made between the teenagers and finally Isabel huffed and rolled her eyes.

“It’s who we are; I don’t know why you’re so shy to talk about it.” She said, impatiently.

“Yeah, you’ve always been the ice Princess, it just came naturally to you; you tell them.” Michael said, placing emphasis on the word ‘princess’. Isabel glared at Michael before turning back to the adults.

“The reason why we each have a duplicate, not a twin, Jesse; why we were sent here in the first place is because we have…lived before…on Antar and in those lives Max was our leader, our king; I was his sister, as Michael implied, a princess. Michael was Max’s second-in-command and Tess…was Max’s bride. Thankfully we just learned that their marriage was arranged with no love between them and that Tess had rigged it so she would be chosen to be his bride. She was obsessed with becoming queen and becoming the real power behind the Antarian throne; that’s why she was so determined to make Max love her in this life.” Isabel had been looking between her parents and husband as she recounted this part of their story and saw her mother grinning.

“My son is a king and my daughter, a princess! Well no wonder you’ve always been such a responsible person, Max; a natural leader, even though you were so shy and quiet growing up.” Diane sighed.

“I couldn’t have been that great a king, Mom; I got us all killed shortly after I inherited my father’s crown.”

“Max, you know that’s not true; it was me…Valondra!” Isabel exclaimed.

“You were killed? What happened and how then were you able to be sent here as babies?” Philip asked.

“Kivar and the Skins happened.” Max took up the story, knowing that it would be painful for Isabel to continue. “We don’t know why there was unrest among our people…except that Larek told me that after my father died and I took the throne, I moved too quickly to make changes, which were supposed to better the lives of our people.”

Philip shifted uncomfortably in his chair when Max mentioned his real father. He guessed that any adoptive parent would feel this way when their child discovered their birth parents; but Max’s father had been a king…of a whole planet! How was he supposed to deal with the inferiority complex which was starting to come over him?

“Anyway, somehow Kivar and his Skins started some sort of uprising…and at the same time courted Valondra/Isabel and made her fall in love with him.” Max looked over at Jesse. “What Kivar told you, back at the factory may have been true, we don’t know, but what we do know to be true, is that Kivar betrayed Valondra. Michael only recovered this memory from our past lives...a few weeks ago. Kivar told Valondra that he wanted to speak with me about ending the…hostilities, but that was just a lie so that he could get inside the palace. When Valondra helped make the arrangements and he was allowed inside our walls, Kivar and his Skins killed us all, including his supposed lover, Valondra. Only our mother survived and somehow made plans to have us sent to Earth, to grow up safely and return to free our people.” Isabel took up the story again.

“But we weren’t resurrected or anything like that…obviously, since we were just fetuses when we were sent here. Our essences…our DNA was mixed with Human DNA so that we would blend in with you. They wanted to make sure that we survived, to be able to return home to our planet; so they sent an extra set of…us four, but something went wrong; the Dupes didn’t get as much Human DNA as we did…and maybe it was having to fend for themselves from such an early age, but they were…more aggressive, less refined…” Isabel tailed off.

“The more we have gotten to know Ava here, the more we think that somehow she and Tess were switched and that Tess should have been with them and Ava should have been with us.” Max said, sincerely and Ava blushed, smiling happily.

“Did the Dupes come to Roswell and then take you back to New York with them?” Philip asked, thinking about the strange-looking girl he had found in his daughter’s room.”

“Yeah.” Ava piped up. “Nicholas…you know, the runt with Kivar?...He came to our crib an’ told Zan…he was Max’s dupe…that Kivar an’ the big cheeses from the ‘hood…wanted to meet with da Royal-four…dat’s was us…or them…” Ava motioned to Max, Isabel and Michael. “Sos they could end the fightin’ ‘tween the five planets. Zan, hey he says no way is he goin’ to be frien’ly with Kivar or the runt. Rath an’ Lonnie…them’s Mike an’ Izy’s dupes…got screemin’ mad at Zan an’…an’…kilt him.” Ava’s chin wobbled but then she continued. “Sos them two gets it into they’s head tha’ we’s should go to Roswell where the other four is. We’s drove an’ drove an’ finally gots here an’ talked Max an’ Tess into goin’ back to New York…only I’s was scared to go wid them an’ stayed here.”

“Good thing she did or Max might be dead.” Liz said quietly.

“What?” The adults all exclaimed. “What happened in New York, Max?”

“Um, well once we got to New York and had a chance to go visit the Empire State Building.” Max saw his father nodding. “We were taken to the meeting room where Nicholas, who was Kivar’s representative here on Earth and three other planetary leaders had gathered.”

“Aliens from three other planets came for this meeting; did they…look like us or…what?” Amy asked.

“Well actually, the leaders send out their…consciousness and take over a Human’s body…they aren’t hurt or anything, but they are used as a puppet or a vessel for a few days, then they don’t remember anything when their bodies are released from alien control.” Max explained. “Um, something you should know, Brody Davis is one of those people who has been…used. It was quite a shock to see him at the meeting; he was host to a leader named Larek, who was a good friend of mine in my past life.”

“You mentioned that earlier, but please continue with your story about how you were in danger and Ava helped save your life.” Philip commented.

“The meeting was all about the four of us; Tess, Rath, Lonnie and I returning to Antar as a puppet government, with Kivar still in power; Isabel and Michael weren’t included in the deal and we would also have to turn over the Granolith to Kivar.”

“What is the Granolith, Max; we’ve heard that term before.” Jesse asked.

“At the time we only knew that it was an alien artifact, which had been hidden away in the desert and that it had the potential to harness immense power.” Max turned and looked at Liz and smiled. They had not mentioned anything about the Future Max fiasco. “I had been warned that it could not fall into anyone else’s hands, so I rejected the whole deal. I couldn’t return to Antar under Kivar’s control; I couldn’t leave Isabel, Michael…or Liz and I couldn’t let the Skins have the Granolith.” Max said passionately and Liz almost blushed at his intense gaze. “Lonnie and Rath decided to kill me as we walked the city’s streets and they almost did; Lonnie caused an overhead scaffold to fall but…but I saw…Liz standing out in the street…calling to me. I couldn’t here her, so I walked towards her…just in time to get beyond the area where the scaffold fell. Liz saved me!” Max grinned at Liz.

“How, how? Liz you went to New York as well?” Amy asked.

“Um no; Ava had been really upset because Lonnie and Rath had killed Zan and she was very worried that they would kill Max too. He didn’t have a cell-phone with him, we didn’t know where the meeting was being held and Isabel couldn’t reach him psychically. Then Ava, who knew that Max had healed me, figured out that because I had been…brought back from…the dead by Max, I had been changed. I was probably developing alien powers too and because of our relationship, our connection, I was the one who might be able to reach him. Isabel took my hand and lent me her energy. We tried and tried and all of a sudden I was standing in the middle of a New York street across from where Max and the others were walking. I saw what Lonnie was planning and tried to warn Max, but he couldn’t hear me; but then he stepped forward, trying to hear me and was no longer under the platform when it fell.” Tears of remembered anxiety tracked down Liz’s cheeks and Max reached over to tenderly brush them away.

“All done, all over; we’re both safe.” He whispered to her.

“So all of that happened over the Thanksgiving holiday, year before last, what’s been happening since then?” Diane asked, understanding where her son had disappeared to over that holiday. “Max…were you the one…who healed all those children, who had cancer, that Christmas?”

“Um yeah Mom; one of them was Brody’s daughter, Sydney, I went to the hospital to heal her, but once I was there…I couldn’t Not heal the other kids in that ward.”

“Oh honey, what a wonderful gift you gave those children and their families!” Diane said smiling proudly at her son.

From there, the kids continued their story, taking turns telling about all that had happened; the harvest, the wipeout and explaining about the Skins in greater detail.

“Hey it just occurred to me…how have Ross and his Skins survived up until now if all the husks were destroyed?” Michael asked.

“I think that they must have been growing their own husks in that other town they were living in and were able to harvest theirs.” Max said.

“But Courtney’s husk was in Copper Summit.” Michael argued.

“Courtney was under cover, she would have had to come with that group in the first place, so they would trust her; Nicholas was not to know that there was another group of Skins on Earth.” Max theorized. “Anyway, you can always ask Ross.”

“Yeah that makes sense.” Michael said and they continued their stories until they got to the part about Alex.

“Oh man, how desperate and obsessed can you get?” Jesse asked. “To brain-wash someone continually until he…dies from it…and then faking a pregnancy…just so you can go home and turn your friends over to their enemies…oh man!” He shook his head in disbelief.

“Thank goodness Liz was so tenacious, she didn’t give up until she found out the truth and then got out to the pod-chamber just in time, before we left.” Max said drawing Liz’s hand up to his lips for a kiss.

“Thank goodness Michael decided to stay on Earth and came out of the pod-chamber when he did, or we never would have gotten in to warn you in time.” Liz countered.

“I have a question, Max.” Philip said. “Something was said about this back at the factory, but I still don’t understand…you were certain that Tess wasn’t pregnant with your child, even when Kivar tried to trick you into thinking he was somehow alive and then you mentioned receiving messages from someone who called you ‘daddy’…but if you knew Tess wasn’t pregnant and we know Tess is dead; who was sending you those messages if not your child?”

“Yeah, Ava told us about the fail-save in the Granolith; it wouldn’t have malfunctioned and then blown up if Tess had truly been carrying my child and heir. Kivar or Nicholas said that Tess lived just long enough for them to find out about what she had been doing since New York, so they would have found out about her mind-warp of me, to make me believe that she was pregnant and that our child was in trouble. I’m sure those two had a lot of fun sending those messages to me and making me worry about my non-existent baby.” Max said grimly.

“Worried, you were obsessed with trying to find a way to help your kid; get home to him.” Kyle spoke up.

“You, you were going to leave…Earth…Max?” Diane asked.

“Yeah, Mom, I was.” Max said apologetically. “Those messages that Kivar was sending me were really making me crazy to find a way to get to him and help him.”

“Did your determination to reach your child have anything to do with Utah, Max?” Philip asked. “You weren’t after money; what was in the basement of that store?” The time had come and Max took a great gulp of air and squeezed Liz’s hand.

“Our…our ship…was in that basement, Dad.” Max said not taking his eyes off his father.

“Your ship?” Diane gasped.

“A real space-ship?” Jesse asked.

“Wow!” Amy exclaimed, but Philip’s eyes only widened a little as he concentrated on what Max was saying.

“I had narrowed down a list of government storage facilities and that one looked very promising, but I needed to get into that basement so I could see for sure.”

“The plan was for me to keep the sales clerk occupied while Max broke into the basement and checked downstairs.” Liz explained.

“I never should have given Liz that gun; it wasn’t even loaded…we should have found another way.” Max said softly, ashamedly.

“It’s okay Max, everything worked out in the end.” Liz told him just as softly.

“We’ll table that point for now.” Philip said. “Was…your…ship down there?”

“Yes, it was!” Max said with a slight smile and a gleam in his eyes. “It was propped up on those stands that were left behind; that you saw when you followed me to the basement that second time, Dad. I had the key; I had activated the beam which would suck me up into the ship…when Liz yelled to me that the police were coming. Man it was so difficult to leave the ship but Liz was in trouble so I ran up those stairs and we took off.”

“They never found the gun the clerk said Liz pointed at him; what did you do with it?” Jesse asked.

“I melted it into the floor boards of my car.” Max said.

“That puddle on the basement floor; the one you didn’t want me to touch, was that from your ship?” Philip asked and Max nodded.

“To have seen the ship you came to Earth in and then have it taken away from you.” Diane said sympathetically.

“Do you have any leads on where they took it, Max?” Amy asked.

“Yeah with a lot of help from Liz, I tracked it down in L.A.” Max looked to his parents. “It turns out that the Dupe’s protector is now a famous Hollywood producer named Cal Langley. I tracked him to L.A. and then he kinda found me in a film vault at a movie studio.” Max decided not to mention how Langley had tried to kill him twice.

“Max you were at a movie studio; how’d you get into one of those? Did you take a tour or what?” Amy asked excitedly. “Did you see anyone famous?”

“I um found an agent who um…got me an audition for a part on ‘Enterprise’.” Max admitted.

“Wow, I love that show! Did you meet any of the cast; how about that hunk, Scott Bakula?”

“Mom would you let Max answer the question so he can get back to the point of his story?” Maria exclaimed. “Max, if you had gotten Scott Bakula’s autograph; you would have at least showed it to me, right?”

“I didn’t get anyone’s autograph, Maria. I did read my lines for Jonathon Frakes and the actor who plays the doctor, but Mr. Frakes didn’t remember me from the time he came to Roswell for the UFO convention.” Max shrugged.

“How’d you do? What part did you try out for?” Amy couldn’t help asking.

“I um played the part of an alien they were making first contact with, but…I guess I didn’t act enough like an alien to suit them!” Max grinned and everyone broke out into laughter at the thought that Max; an alien king, no less, couldn’t get the part of an alien on a TV show. “Anyway after Cal found me, he asked around and found out that the ship was being stored nearby, so we…broke in one night and tried to steel it…only it doesn’t run. Langley got it started and it rose a few yards into the air and then came crashing down to the ground.”

“I told you that thing was a lemon.” Isabel grumbled.

“And you were right, Izy.” Max agreed, before looking forlornly into Liz’s eyes. He was remembering how much he had hurt Liz by ignoring her phone call and deciding to leave Earth in the ship without even saying goodbye. Liz leaned over and quoted his own words back to him.

“All done, all finished; we’re both safe now.”

“I love you, Liz.”

“I love you, Max.” They whispered to each other and then heard a throat being cleared nearby.

“Could someone please explain to me what really happen on our honeymoon?” Jesse asked.

That broke Max and Liz out of their staring contest and Isabel, Michael and Max took turns explaining to Jesse what had really happened on their honeymoon.

“Max you healed my broken nose; the steak had nothing to do with it huh?” Jesse asked.

“Yeah, um sorry about…breaking it in the first place, Jesse.”

“It’s okay, Max; my bride hit me over the head with a branch!” Jesse exclaimed to his lovely wife.

“Honey, I couldn’t take the chance of your seeing what you shouldn’t see, or your being hurt or killed by Kivar if you had tried to fight him.”

“We’ll…talk about this later.” Jesse said but leaned in and kissed Isabel sweetly on the mouth and she relaxed.

“Who was little Samuel, Max? Where does he fit into this?” Diane asked and Max explained how Kivar had tormented him by speaking through the young autistic boy.

“He’s doing okay now that his parents are back together again.” Max reported. “And that brings us to today. We…” Max indicated himself and all of his friends. “Had gone out to the desert to practice our powers and to see how far along Liz and Kyle were in developing theirs’. All of you were taken just fifteen minutes before we all came home and found you gone and the note on the walls. We were pretty sure that Kivar and Nicholas hadn’t arrived yet, so we high-tailed it out to the old cheese factory. When we got there, we met Ross and his Skins. He was able to find out where inside the factory you were being held and was able to tell us before we made our grand entrance. Ava was able to mind-warp the bad Skins, while the good Skins were able to kill them without being seen…and then just as soon as we thought we were safe, Kivar and Nicholas showed up and you saw what happened next…”

“Boy, do we ever!” Amy exclaimed and everyone started to chuckle; releasing some of the tension they had been feeling.

“So what now, Max? Any plans?” Diane asked.

“I don’t know…” Max said, looking at Liz. “I’m still worried about my people…even though Kivar and Nicholas have been killed; there are other Skins on Antar. I don’t know if they can be overthrown…I just wish I could find out, or had a way to get there.”

“I wonder if Ross and his Skins have a ship or communications equipment.” Michael suggested.

“You, you still want to return to Antar, Max?” Liz asked softly, but he could still here the hurt in her voice.

“Liz, I don’t want to leave Earth, I Don’t want to leave you, but now that Kivar and Nicholas are dead…things are different; my people may need me even more now…” Max gave a humorless chuckle. “Or they may not need me at all; they’ve survived for over fifty years without me! I promise I won’t just leave on a whim, but if there were a way for me to communicate with Antar, or for them to contact me…I need to find out what’s going on…if I can; but know this Liz Parker, in your mind, heart and soul; I love you and I won’t leave you if I can possibly help it.” Max leaned his head forward and Liz allowed his face to rest against hers, as they had always used to do.

“Okay, Max; we’ll go talk to Ross tomorrow and see what he says.” Liz said.

“Thank you, Liz; I…” Max began to say, but was cut off by the sound of the doorbell.

“Who could that be at this hour?” Philip wondered out loud as he went to open the door.

“Brody? What are you doing here; it’s kind of late?” Philip asked Max’s boss, but the younger man was not looking at Philip, he was looking at Max as he brushed past the father and walked towards the son.

“Not Brody, Max; it’s Larek…”

TBC Feedback Please! All parts to this story are being posted on the Repost Board. Thank you, jane.

posted on 1-Mar-2002 6:58:16 AM by jane
Author's note: I hope to have the Last chapter up by Monday (?) Please be patient with me and Stay Tuned!

Love, jane
posted on 3-Mar-2002 2:12:38 PM by jane
**Once again I want to thank my Wonderful beta readers, Ladylou and deraZor for all of their help, support and enthusiasm in writing this story! Love, jane

What Is Max Hiding? Part 11 The Conclusion!

“Not Brody; it’s Larek.” The alien leader said, speaking through Brody’s lips.

“Larek, what are you doing here? Do you…know about Kivar and Nicholas being dead?” Max asked.

“Yes we…”

“You Threatened My Daughter!” Amy yelled, pointing at Larek. “Maria get behind me!”

“Madam, do I know you?” Larek asked.

“You were pointing a gun at my daughter!” Amy continued yelling.

“What is going on here?” Philip yelled.

“Amy this man isn’t threatening anyone.” Diane tried to calm her friend.

“Oh man, how could I have forgotten Mom’s mind-warp? Seeing Brody must have set her off.” Maria cried.

“You stay away from us.” Amy yelled, ignoring everyone trying to calm her.

“Ava, Tess mind-warped Mrs. DeLuca so she wouldn’t remember…something that happened once, but the warp is breaking down; could you stop the mind-warp and recover her memory, so we can calm her down and explain things to her?” Max asked urgently.

“Yeah sure.” Ava said starting her mind-probe and moved slowly towards Amy.

“What, what’s going on?” Amy cried out, confused.

“Mom you need to calm down so we can explain.” Maria told her mother, while holding onto one of her arms. “Everything’s okay; we’re safe and Brody doesn’t want to hurt anyone.”

“Why, why do I have two sets of memories of what happened that night at the UFO Center?” Amy asked.

After Ava said that she was done; Maria, Max and Liz explained to Amy, Larek and everyone else about the accident Brody had had with his virtual reality program, which had allowed him to access Larek’s memories, stored in an unused portion of his brain and how in his confusion, Brody had held Max, Tess, Maria, Amy and Shaun hostage down in the UFO Center.

“So…Tess mind-warped me so that I wouldn’t remember any of what Brody said or did while he was…delusional?” Amy asked.

“Yeah, but Tess did a crummy job an’ it started to fall apart almost as soon as she finished.” Ava explained.

“So, welcome not only to the ‘I-know-an-alien-club’, but to its elite inner circle of ‘I’ve-been-mind-warped-by-Tess’!” Maria told her mother.

“And my host did all of this after his electronic equipment malfunctioned?” Larek asked. “Yes, yes I can see the scar tissue in his brain; if it isn’t fixed the memory block I place on him will break.” Larek said.

“Couldn’t you just let him remember? We can explain to him…” Max asked.

“If Brody were allowed to remember he would develop something comparable to a split personality disorder which might send him into madness. Experience has taught us that the Human brain can’t handle the strain. That’s why we always block their memories of what happened to them after we’re through using them as our hosts. Now, let me repair the damage and then give you the message I was asked to bring you; I don’t have much time.” Larek said and then shut his eyes and stood still for a few minutes.

“So, this Larek was a friend of yours in your past life, Max?” Diane asked.

“Yes, he told me once that we grew up together, almost like brothers.” Max answered.

“And so now whenever he wants to speak to you, he reaches out across space with his mind and takes over Brody’s body?” Jess asked in shock.

“Uh yeah, Jesse; but it’s only happened a couple times and Brody’s never been harmed by it.” Maria said.

“I have repaired the synapses in my host’s brain; all is as it should be again.” Larek said. “Zan…Max I have brought a message for you from the Queen Mother. All Antar has learned the great news of Kivar and Nicholas’ deaths. Her Royal Highness asks that you make contact with her as soon as possible.”

“But how?” Max asked, momentarily confused.

“Use the orbs as you did before and they will create a communications link with her.” Larek answered.

“Yeah that too, but I was asking how everyone on Antar found out about Kivar’s death?” Max asked.

“As I understand it, there is a group of Skins here on Earth who fought with you and they relayed information of the victory to Antar.” Larek explained.

“I wish Ross had told us that he has communications equipment.” Michael muttered.

“Our mother wants to speak to us…live; not just a message?” Isabel asked and after Larek nodded. “Well let’s contact her then; we have the orbs here!”

“May we…stay? We would so like to meet…her.” Diane asked, not sure what to call this woman; their real mother, former mother, birth mother?

“You and Ava hold this orb, while Michael and I hold this one.” Isabel said, handing Max one of the orbs.

The four aliens concentrated and soon a beam of light came curving out of each orb, joined together in mid-air and then the combined stream curved down to the ground to grow into a large cloud of light. Out of this light-cloud stepped the figure of a woman who looked around at everyone gathered in the Evans’ living room.

“I take this form again because it will be familiar to you.” Their mother said; the bright light around her shining on her wavy blond hair and showed off her great big eyes and lovely composed face. “My name is Zanaria in case you’ve forgotten and your father’s name was Valorian.”

“I’m Isabel, I used to be Valondra and that’s Max, who was Zan and over there is Michael, who used to be Rath and Ava, who used to be…Ava.” Isabel pointed each of them out with a nod of her head, since their hands were busy holding the orbs.

“Ava…but you are Tess’ duplicate aren’t you?” Zanaria asked.

“Yes she is, Zanaria, but she came to warn us that her fellow Dupes; Lonnie and Rath were working with Nicholas and that they were on their way here, probably to try and kill us.” Max explained. “She is one of our four-square now.” Zanaria’s shoulders relaxed a little.

“Then I thank you Ava and wish you strength and courage within the four-square and health and happiness here in your new home.” Zanaria smiled at the shy girl.

“Thanks, um…Zanaria.” Ava said shyly. Zanaria looked back to her son.

“Now Zan…Max, would you please introduce the rest of these people to me?” Max nodded.

“These are our wonderful adoptive parents, Philip and Diane Evans.” Max started the introductions, glad that he didn’t have to decide what to call this woman. Diane Evans would always be ‘Mom’ to him. “Jesse Ramirez; Isabel’s husband…”

“Husband; you’re married Isabel? How wonderful! I can see by the way you two look at each other that you must love each other very much. May you have a long, healthy and happy life together.” Zanaria blessed them.

“Thank you…Zanaria!” Isabel exclaimed and Max took up the introductions again.

“These are our good friends; Liz Parker, Kyle Valenti, Maria DeLuca and her mother, Amy DeLuca…and of course you know Larek in his host body of Brody Davis.”

“Let’s see…is Liz Parker your special young lady, Max?” Zanaria asked and then laughed at the blushing and intense eye contact they shared. “Yes I see she is!”

“How, how are…things on Antar, Zanaria? Max asked.

“We’ll get to that in a minute, Max; I have something I’d like to say to your parents.” Zanaria said looking over to the Evanses.

“Us?” Diane asked a little worried; was this beautiful woman going to whisk her children away from her this very instant?

“Yes, when I was forced to send my only children away from my care and our planet, I was terrified for their safety; would our desperate plan be successful? More than worrying about their future impact on Antar, I was doubly concerned about how they would grow up; who would take care of them, since I couldn’t be there for them myself? I see now the kindness, concern and love in your faces and know you feel those things for my…our children and my tired old heart is revived! Max introduced you as his wonderful parents and so I wish to give you my grateful and heartfelt thanks for the care you have given them.” Zanaria bowed deeply to the Evanses and Philip and Diane clasped each other’s hands and smiled.

“They’ve been wonderful kids; thoughtful and bright…any parent would be proud to call them their own.” Philip said.

“Um… Zanaria you aren’t here to tell us that we have to come back to Antar right away are you?” Isabel asked, concerned.

“As much as I would love to have you home again, that won’t be possible at this time. We have heard about the Granolith’s destruction by the traitorous Tess…and we don’t have even one ship to send to pick you up. The Skin named Ross, who contacted us, told us that their ship crashed like yours did and that Nicholas ordered all their other ships destroyed so that the Earth military wouldn’t capture them.” Zanaria said regretfully.

“Can you tell us what’s been going on, Zanaria?” Max asked again.

“There are many factions among the Skins and Kivar was the only one who could control them; make them work together. As soon as we received word about the deaths of Kivar and Nicholas, the different groups started fighting amongst themselves, trying to take control in his place. That has allowed those of us in the Resistance to take control of this communications center.”

“Is the Resistance very large; what chances do you have of taking back Antar?” Max asked.

“Our numbers have fluctuated over the last fifty years.” Zanaria explained. We launched two major uprisings in the past, when we were at our best strength but we were always driven back, captured and defeated. This is our third rising and we are ready as we ever will be. We have always known which locations and facilities would be the most important to take and control in case we were ever given such an opportunity. As soon as we heard the news and the fighting broke out, we sprang into action and were able to take control of this facility. I had to make sure you were alright, all of you. Other teams are trying to gain control over bases which house space ships and fighter craft; they are much more heavily guarded than this place and we’ve never been able to get near one before. It may take quite some time but we will keep fighting…knowing that you are alive and that Kivar is dead will give us all hope.” Zanaria smiled at the entire group.

“What about Kivar’s transporter? What chance do you have of gaining control of that? If the Skins keep it they could launch wave after wave of attacks on Earth.” Max asked in great concern.

“Kivar’s what? A transporter; what’s that?” Larek asked after glancing over to Zanaria who also wore a puzzled expression.

“It’s an energy tube-thing.” Michael explained. “It can transfer someone’s um mind-control into a Human host or allow them to travel bodily to this planet.”

“But we have heard nothing about such a device.” Zanya cried out.

“Nor have my people.” Larek said.

“Hopefully that means that such a machine was Kivar’s little secret; unknown to most of the Skins.” Max murmured. “Do you think that’s possible? Would that give you any ideas as to where to look for it?” Max asked their two visitors.

“Yes…” Zanaria said thoughtfully. “I…I need to go and order a search be started for the device right away. I’m sorry to cut this short.”

“So there’s nothing we can do to help you?” Max asked.

“No Max, for now it is we who must work hard and work quickly.” Zanaria said.

“Zanaria, could I ask one more question?” Isabel asked quickly.

“Of course, Isabel.”

“When Max told you that I was married to Jesse, you were happy and you laughed with joy when you found out about Liz being Max’s girlfriend…aren’t you concerned that we didn’t choose the same…mates we had in our past lives…in that message you left for us…Michael and I…”

“That message was only to tell you who you were to each other…once. The diagram in the book was only to show you the positions you hold in your four-square. As to your past…mates, those were arranged unions; not a practice I like very much, although your father was a good mate to me. Don’t any of you worry; it was understood that with the addition of Human DNA, your choice in mate might be different. As long as you love, respect and support each other and are made stronger because of your union I can only be happy for each of you.” Zanaria grinned at the relieved faces before her.

“We’re so glad to hear you say that, Zanaria!” Max exclaimed. “Our protector, Nascedo and Tess were so obsessed with following what they called our destiny, which they said was mapped out in that book…and we couldn’t read any of it…and then we got your message which seemed to confirm what they had been saying…” Zanaria looked thoughtful.

“But of course…Nascedo and Tess would need to keep your relationships the way they were in your past lives for their plan to work. The arrangement made between Kivar and Nascedo depended on Tess returning with all of you to Antar, but as Max’s mate and preferably already pregnant with his child.”

“You know about that? We only found out the truth minutes before Tess took off in the Granolith.” Michael exclaimed.

“Yes, a few of Kivar’s people knew or found out about the agreement…and we found out from them.” Zanaria explained. “But now I really must go. I will contact you as soon as I have any more news or in three days if nothing comes up; I long to just chat with all of you.”

“Good luck, Zanaria.” Isabel said.

“Be careful.” Max said.

“We love you.” They both said together, tears swimming in their eyes.

“And I love you.” Zanaria replied, fighting to keep her composure until her image disappeared back into the light filled cloud and the transmission ended.

There was a moment of silence and then everyone took a deep breath of air, realizing that they had been holding their breaths and then they all started talking at once.

“Oh Max!” Isabel sighed happily through her tears before turning to her husband, who gathered her into his strong, loving arms.

“Destiny was a crock; I knew it!” Michael exclaimed smiling smugly.

“Yeah isn’t it great to have Zanaria’s blessing?” Max whispered to Liz who just nodded and snuggled into his embrace.

“She’s quite a lady, your mother.” Diane told her children.

“So’s our other mother, the only one we’ve ever really known.” Isabel said sincerely, leaving her husband’s arms to hug Diane.

“Both of you…have been…fantastic parents…especially lately.” Max said and stuck out his hand to shake his father’s but was drawn from the handclasp into a fatherly hug and then passed to Diane for a hug as Isabel came to hug her father and Philip felt his parental insecurities melt away.

“Oh man what a night!” Amy exclaimed.

“I must go, this body can’t hold me much longer.” Larek said. “But I’ll return if needed.”

“Bye Larek and thanks for all of your help.” Max said showing his former friend out the door.

“I’m with Amy; what a night!” Jesse said. “We’ve been abducted, watched an alien battle, been saved, I found out that my beloved wife is an alien and now I’ve just seen my first inter-stellar family reunion!”

“Yeah; just another normal day in the neighborhood!” Maria agreed.

“It’s midnight.” Philip said. “Even though I still have lots of questions and I doubt I’ll sleep a wink, maybe we should all go home for now.”

“Oh man and I have a seven o’clock flight to Dallas tomorrow…no this morning.” Jesse groaned.

“Oh Jesse, I’d forgotten about your business trip; do you have to go?” Isabel asked.

“Yeah, I’m sorry Sweetheart, I do; but I’ll be home in time to celebrate New Year’s Eve with you.” Jesse promised.

“I’m counting on it; in the meantime let’s go home.” Isabel said.

“I’ll drive you home; is it still okay if Liz stays with you as she’d planned?” Max asked.

“Oh that’s right we were supposed to be having a girl’s night, weren’t we?” Isabel remembered.

“Or maybe I should just go home.” Liz offered not wanting to intrude.

“It’s okay Liz, as much as I’d like to…I’ll need to get what little sleep I can before I leave for the airport.” Jesse reassured her.

“Good night Mom and Dad. We’ll talk some more I’m sure.” Max said hugging his parents again.

“You bet we will.” Diane said.

“Good night…son.” Philip said as he hugged his kids once more and the four of them left.

“We’d better go, too.” Amy said.

“Hey I’ll drive you home.” Michael offered.

“Michael you only have your motorcycle.” Maria said.

“But now I’ve got the jeep.” Michael said.

“Michael that jeep was probably stolen. Even though you’ve changed its color and license plate there’s no way for you to explain how you came into possession of it and…” Philip said as Michael opened his mouth to reply. “…and even if your powers could create the proper paper work, I doubt you can enter all the relevant information into the different computer systems which keep track of every facet of our daily lives.”

“The police might make a connection between that jeep and the ones we left behind in the cheese factory.” Max said. “It’ll be better if you return the jeep to the factory and change it back to the way if was for the police to find; maybe they can be returned to their owners.”

“Oh man…oh alright.” Michael grumbled.

“In that case, I’ll drive you two home.” Kyle offered.

“Thanks Kyle.” Maria said and the four of them left after saying good night to Mr. and Mrs. Evans and were followed out by Michael.

“Max didn’t ask or suggest his moving back home.” Diane said sadly as soon as everyone had left.

“He probably thinks that he doesn’t have the right to just come back; he may be looking for some sign from us.” Philip said and Diane looked up at him hopefully. “We can talk to him later on today or tomorrow.” Philip added knowing that he would like to have his son living under his roof again; giving them a chance to strengthen their new relationship. “Come on honey, let’s get to bed.” Philip took Diane’s hand and let her to their bedroom.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“Good night you two.” Max told his sister and brother-in-law as he hugged Isabel and shook Jesse’s hand. “Have a safe trip, Jesse; Isabel…I’m glad you’re okay.”

“’Night, Max.” Isabel said.

“I’ll be in, in just a minute.” Liz said and the older couple grinned before they went inside.

“So what are you doing for New Year’s Eve?” Max asked as he drew Liz tightly into his arms and she wound her arms up around his neck.

“I have to work.” Liz grumbled. “It’s a Parker family tradition for Dad and I to throw the old folk’s New Year’s party together, but I’ll try to get out of it.”

“Mmmm, yeah see what you can do.” Max said between kisses.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“Thanks for the ride, Kyle; good night you two.” Amy said as she and Maria got out of the car.

“Good night, Mrs. DeLuca; Maria.” Kyle said and Ava waved.

“Hey Kyle?” Amy asked before he pulled away.

“Yeah?” Kyle asked.

“Are you going to tell your dad about what happened tonight?” Amy asked.

“Yeah, eventually I guess.” Kyle asked. “He had a gig tonight, so he’s probably not home yet, why?”

“If you’d like, I could tell him for you!” Amy’s eyes were twinkling.

“Uhm…sure…okay; why don’t you do the telling?” Kyle agreed. ‘And I’ll go find some cotton to stuff in my ears for when you do.’ He thought to himself.



~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Later that morning at eight o’clock, Amy, who had always been an early riser, was knocking on the Valenti’s front door. Kyle and Ava, who had a good idea who was knocking, pretended to still be sleeping…but they had stuffed cotton into their ears.

“Uh…hi…Amy…” Jim Valenti tried to sound happy to see his sometime-girlfriend, but since he had only arrived home at three that morning, his attempt was not very successful.

“Hi Jim.” Amy smiled brightly. “May I come in? There’s something I need to tell you.” Jim hesitated.

“Uh, well it’s kind of early…” Jim said reluctantly.

“Thank you.” Amy said as she squeezed by Jim and into his house. “It’s important.”

“Oh well, what is it Amy? Would you like some coffee? I’m going to put a pot on to brew.”

“No thanks, Jim.” Amy let him putter around in the kitchen and then pour his cup of coffee. As he lifted his mug to take his first sip… “I know all about your secret…” She deliberately trailed off as Jim half spat out his coffee, half choked on it. “Oh Jim, would you like me to slap your back for you?” Amy gave his back several bone-cracking slaps in the guise of trying to help.

“Um thanks…cough…Amy…cough…I’m fine…cough…now.” Jim said while trying to come up with a plausible response. “Uh Amy what are you talking about; what secret?”

“Oh you know, Jim; the one about Max and Isabel Evans, Michael Guerin and Ava being aliens…and Liz Parker having some powers too…oh and Kyle’s involved with them too isn’t he?”

Jim sipped some more coffee as he tried to calm his emotions down. This was just getting better and better.

“Um Amy, what are you talking about? Aliens…in Roswell? Come on!” Jim tried to laugh but didn’t quite pull it off.

“Yeah, gee I got that idea when I was abducted last night, along with Maria, Mr. and Mrs. Evans and Jesse Ramirez by some goons who turned out to be space-aliens called Skins. What really gave it away was when Max and his friends killed these guys and They Exploded Into Great CLOUDS Of SKIN FLAKES!...AND they Shot Energy Bolts OUT OF THEIR HANDS!”

“Oh God; Amy if you’re not totally and completely pulling my leg here, you’ve…you have to tell me what exactly you’re talking about; what happened last night.” Jim took a firm hold of Amy’s shoulders and looked deeply into her eyes.

So Amy did; starting with she and Maria being abducted, through the battles, the explanation at the Evans’ house and then meeting Max and Isabel’s real mother. Jim ran his hands over his face when Amy finished.

“KYLE, AVA; Get Out Here NOW!” He yelled.

“Yeah Dad?” Kyle asked as he and Ava came running, pulling the cotton out of their ears.

“You want to tell me what the…heck…happened last night?” Jim demanded.

Kyle and Ava looked at each other and then at Amy. Knowing that she had already told her version of last night’s activities, they told theirs’; repeating a lot of what Amy had told Jim, clarifying and adding other parts.

“Your turn, Jim.” Amy said. “Tell me how you became involved in all of this.”

Jim told his story; starting with the shooting at the Crashdown, the missing bullet and the bullet-hole in Liz’s uniform…his realization that Max was in trouble and his growing respect and fondness for the boy…then rescuing Max from the FBI, capturing Pierce and Kyle’s being shot…Max healing his son…Laurie DuPre, losing his badge and the decision of the four aliens to return to their home planet.

“Oh…man!” Amy exclaimed when Jim finished.

“Ditto!” Kyle agreed with her. “It’s been a crazy couple of years!”

Story continued in next frame, please stay tuned!
posted on 3-Mar-2002 2:14:51 PM by jane
Concluding chapter continued from above.

New Year’s Eve up on Liz’s balcony.

”I’m sorry.” Liz told Max.

“It’s alright; I had a feeling he wasn’t going to let you get off work.” Max assured her.

“So what’re you going to do?” Liz asked.

“Go back to Michael’s and avoid New Year’s Rockin’ Eve.” Max said.

His parents had spoken with him and invited Max to move back into their…his home and he had happily accepted, but Max hadn’t packed all of his stuff yet and besides, his parents were out at a party of their own so there was no pressure for him to move back that day and spend the evening with them.

”Why don’t you just go out with Maria and Michael?” Liz asked. ‘Oh how I wish we could spend the whole night together…’ Liz thought to herself.

”Enigma?” Max asked uninterested.

“Uh huh.” Liz confirmed.

“I’m not a party guy Liz; I’m more of a one on one guy.”
‘…Who wants to spend his time with his one and only love.’ Max thought as he kissed Liz’s sweet lips and she kissed him back.

”Well I like one on one, but parties are very fun too…no seriously. When was the last time you went out and had fun at a party with people you don’t know?” Liz asked. ‘Why am I asking him such a stupid question, I don’t want Max going to any parties without me.’ Liz thought.

”I don’t know.” Max said still uninterested. ‘And I don’t care!’ He exclaimed silently.

”Exactly; come on there’s no reason both of us should have a crummy New Years.” Liz argued.

“I’d feel like a third wheel.” Max said.

“No, you’d be a guy hanging out with his two best friends on New Year’s Eve and you’d be having a really good time.” Liz leaned in and kissed Max persuasively. “All right?”

“I need more convincing.” Max said.
‘If I can’t be with Liz, I’d better load up on her kisses.’ He thought and then said out loud. ”I almost believe it…”

“Good bye! I have to go back downstairs.” Liz said regretfully.

“All right, okay; but on one condition…midnight comes and we’re together.” Max insisted.

“How’re we going to do that? I’m going to be downstairs and you’re going to be…”

“We’ll find a way; somehow, someway, we’ll make it happen.” Max said determinably.

“Max.” She stared up at him.

“Liz.” He stared back.

“Okay, we’ll find a way.” Liz agreed and kissed him again.

“See you at midnight.” Max said before he turned to climb down the ladder.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“Boy trouble?” The older lady named Jane snags Liz as she walks by the counter, pouting.

“Um well sort of; my parents don’t really approve of my boyfriend.” Liz said.

“I’m having the same problem.” Jane said. “See that crotchety old couple? My mom and dad; you’d think they’d let Frank and me be by now, but no.”

“Uh well, which one is Frank?” Liz asked, looking around through the crowd of old people.

“Oh he’s not here. New Years means a lot to them.” Jane indicates her parents. “Kind of a sentimental thing, you know. So Frank goes out with his buddies to the VFW and I give them this one night of the year.”

“But don’t you mind being apart on New Years?” Liz asked.

“Sure we do, but your parents won’t always be there and besides we have phone sex at midnight!” Jane whispered.

If it hadn’t been for what had happened just the other night, Liz might have blown the old lady’s advice off as silly, but now she gave it some serious thought as she watched her father dancing at the front of a line-dance.
‘I guess she’s right.’ Liz thought to herself. ‘Just living a normal life is risky enough without adding the alien factor to the equation. I guess giving Dad one night a year wouldn’t be too bad…’ Liz left Jane and went to write out her resolution and stick it on the cactus.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

At the bar a little while later, Jeff is watching Liz read off the numbers for the Bingo game as Jim Valenti comes to join him.

“She seems to be having a good time.” Jim said smiling.

“Go figure; an hour ago you’d think she’d been sentenced to work here tonight.” Jeff answered; then looked thoughtfully at his friend. “Jim, can I ask you something?”

“Sure.” Jim said.

“What do you think about Max Evans?” Jeff asked.
Jim thought about what Amy, Kyle and Ava had just told him the other morning and then thought back over the last three years and about how much he liked and respected the young alien king.

”Honestly? I think a great deal of him. I think he’s a very special kid.” Jim answered.

“I used to think so too; he always seemed like a responsible, straight-ahead kid, but...” Jeff mused.

“Listen, this is a tough age; I mean take it from the father of a teenage boy. They up and do things…Jeff, I can’t honestly sit here and give you the ‘boys will be boys’ routine…Max screwed up Big time…Put your daughter in danger; there’s no excuse for that, but since you seem to be asking my opinion…” Jeff nodded. “I think Max is a good kid who made a big mistake and I truly think he’s learned from it. And I think he really does love your daughter and deserves a second chance…”

“Bingo!” Jane called out and the two men laughed and clapped with everyone else.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Max was walking down the stairs from the Parker’s apartment after doing his best to heal a drunk Michael, when the swinging door between the café and the back-room was opened by Jeff Parker.

‘Oh man; back to the real world. We killed Kivar, saved our friends and parents the other night, but tonight I’m still the despised boyfriend.” Max thought miserably as he tried to sneak out the back door.

“Liz, it’s almost 10:30.” Jeff told his daughter and then spotted Max.

“Uh sorry, sorry Dad; I’ll be right there.” Liz stammered, looking between her boyfriend and her father.

“Hey Max; where are you going?” Jeff asked and Max turned around in confusion. “A boy should be with his girlfriend at midnight; don’t you have any class?” Max continued to look at Mr. Parker, uncertain. “Tic-tock.” Jeff tapped his watch, looking at his daughter, who was starting to smile before disappearing back into the café.

The crowd was counting down the minutes to Crashdown midnight…or 10:30, as Jeff stuck one last resolution on the cactus. Max was standing behind Liz, with his arms around her.

“Here we go…ten, nine, eight…three, two, one…Happy New Year!” Everyone yelled; clapping and hugging their neighbor. Liz and Max use the time to kiss each other behind the cactus.

‘Mmmm, I love this! I love being able to kiss Liz like this again; out in public…anytime we want to.’ Max thought happily as his lips caressed hers’.

‘What changed my dad’s mind about Max? I don’t care…as long as we can do this…’ Liz thought as she tightened her arms around Max and opened her lips further to allow him greater access.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Later, Liz is cleaning up the café.

“Lizzy.” Jeff said.

“Hum?” Liz replied.

“That’s good enough; I can finish up.” Jeff assured her.

“What’re you talking about; this place is a mess.” Liz argued.

“That’s okay; I can take care of it; why don’t you two go out and have a real New Years.” Jeff offered.

“Dad…” Liz said.

“Well, I put a resolution on the cactus and it said to give second chances.” Jeff looked meaningfully between Liz and Max and earned himself a tight hug from his daughter.

Things were back to normal…well as normal as they ever were in Roswell, New Mexico; alien capital of the world.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


January 3, 2003.

I’m Liz Parker and it’s incredible; all the changes which have taken place this last year. I want to remember the high points on these pages.

Two days after we had killed Kivar and contacted Zanaria; Max’s Antarian mother, she called us back to tell us that the Resistance had managed to take control of one military base and if Max really wanted to return to Antar and take up the fight and his throne, she would send a ship to come pick him up, as well as anyone else who wanted to come with him. But Max had to make his decision right then because it takes a whole year to travel from Antar to Earth. Max told me later that he couldn’t say no and let Zanaria and the rest of his people down, when he had to look into her eyes as he gave her his decision. Michael and Isabel decided not to go, but six months later, Ava said that she would like to come after all and Kyle wants to come with her.

After making his decision to return to Antar, Max started to study with Zanaria, using the communicators; there was so much for him to learn. Soon afterwards, he told me about his doubts and fears, which were creeping up on him; what kind of king would he be? Antar is so different, would he like living there now? But after a year of study he has learned so much and has conquered most of his fears.

One important thing I forgot to make note of here; six months ago, the Resistance found Kivar’s transporter device and we have been bopping back and forth between Earth and Antar ever since. Everyone has tried it at least once, even our parents, Amy, Jim and Jesse. I say Our parents because eight months ago, even before the transporter had been found, Max asked me to return to Antar with him…and I agreed! (It turns out that Max had been miserable, thinking he had to leave me behind, but worried about my safety or whether I would actually want to go with him…and I was miserable, because he was leaving me again and not even asking me if I wanted to go with him.) After that, I decided that I would have to tell my parents everything. With everyone’s help, Mom and Dad actually took it pretty well. I think knowing the truth behind everything that has happened, especially Utah, really brought them some peace of mind.

So, it’s been a year since we killed Kivar and we are all out here in the desert; Mom and Dad, Mr. and Mrs. Evans, Amy DeLuca, Jim Valeni, Kyle and Ava, Michael and Maria; who are back together again, Jesse and Isabel; who is four months pregnant with their first child, and Max and I. We are waiting for the ship to come, so we can tell the crew “thank you very much for all of your hard work in getting here so quickly but now you can turn around and go back to Antar and we will be there when you arrive!” If they hurry they can attend Max and my wedding! I can’t believe it sometimes; Max and I are finally getting married! Oh how I LOVE him! We are waiting because of our ages, the war; which only ended two months ago and because of all the stuff we have to do; Antar is being rebuilt and Max wants to set up a democratic government. He will go down in history as Antar’s last king however, because his people crowned him shortly after the Skins surrendered. Max says he doesn’t want the responsibility and stress of being king. He will probably be voted in as Antar’s first president, though but I don’t think he realizes that yet!

Oh man, I’d better stop writing, here comes the ship! The only way we can tell that it is coming is by the dust it stirs up, since it is invisible and silent, as it comes in for a landing…

Max grabbed Liz’s hand right after she tucked her journal into her huge purse and they ran closer to where the ship had landed. He gathered his soon-to-be-queen/first-lady into his arms and thought about their future. As long as he; Max Evans could hold Liz Parker, the future looked perfect to him!

The End!

Feedback Please! All parts to this story are being posted on the Repost Board. Thank you, jane.

ps_dreamer asked: is there gonna be a sequel? u know, the wedding and everything?

jane answers: No, I'm sorry, but I don't plan a sequel, I'm pooped!

I have written two Royal Weddings though! Just look up my stories; "I Can't, I'm
Different" (includes Max and Liz's royal wedding) and "Was It A Dream?" (sequel to ICID
and includes M/L's son's royal wedding!)

You can find links to both in the "Works by author" forum or go looking for them on the Repost Board.

I Hope you will try out my other stories and I hope you enjoy them! Love, jane

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 4-Mar-2002 2:26:12 PM ]
posted on 4-Mar-2002 6:51:29 AM by jane
*happy*Bump! Pweeez Weed *sad* Pweez??

Thank you! *happy* Love, jane
posted on 4-Mar-2002 10:31:07 AM by jane
No, I'm sorry, but I don't plan a sequel, I'm pooped!

I have written two Royal Weddings though! Just look up my stories; "I Can't, I'm Different" (includes Max and Liz's royal wedding) and "Was It A Dream?" (sequel to ICID and includes M/L's son's royal wedding!)

You can find links to both in the "Works by author" forum or go looking for them on the Repost Board.

I Hope you will try out my other stories and I hope you enjoy them! Love, jane

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 4-Mar-2002 1:21:47 PM ]
posted on 4-Mar-2002 2:22:58 PM by jane