posted on 12-Feb-2002 8:49:06 PM by Lilac Stardust
Someone asked that I post this story here so I thought I would give it a shot. For now I will do it one chapter at a time. If people seem to want me to keep posting here then I will ok? *wink*

~LS
*angel*

2-1-4 the lovely banner was made by Anniepoo98

Title:Hope in the Darkness

Rating: R for language and themes and maybe some M/L fuzzies later.

Category: AU M/L but (almost all) other characters present eventually

Summary: AU story based on a song I have liked for a long time, but with a different twist. Liz didn’t grow up in Roswell and has been living in foster homes as long as she can remember.

Disclaimer: Jason Katims and Melinda Metz own everything Roswell…come on now if I owned it would I be writing fanfic??? Also I don’t own the song either, it’s “Two beds and a coffee machine” by Savage Garden. I’m just borrowing this stuff and I’ll put it back when I’m done I promise. The characters Abby, Charlotte, and Frank were created by me though loosely based on characters in the song or people I know.

Feedback: Okay I said I wouldn’t beg—but I lied…..Please please please leave feedback!

A/N: the italics indicate thought, also song lyrics.


Chapter 1


The gravel crunched as Liz slowly pulled the old beat up and falling apart car to a stop in front of the house. Standing up and getting out of the car, she looked around as she walked towards the house next door and up the small steps, being careful not to use the third one, as it had been unstable for as long as she could remember. She opened the door slowly and set her bag on the floor. “Thank you,” she sighed as she realized that no one was home.

She walked across the room and picked up the phone, quickly dialing the number she knew by heart. “Hello, Mrs. Sanchez? It’s Liz, you can send them over now, I just got back from work. Okay thanks again,” she said, hanging up the phone and walking back towards the living room. Just then, two pairs of feet bounded up the stairs and through the door.

“Lizzie!” they yelled, running towards her and wrapping their small arms around her waist.

“We missed you while you were gone,” the younger one said.

“I missed you too, but you girls know I have to work,” Liz said as she hugged them in return.

“We know…” the older girl replied.

“So why don’t you both go get cleaned up and then we will see what we can find for dinner ok?"

“Okay!” they yelled as they raced towards their room.

Liz sat down on the couch to wait for them and couldn’t help but remember how this all started. From what she had been told, she had been adopted when she was just a baby. Unfortunately, her adoptive parents had been killed a few years later in a car crash. She had been at home at the time with a babysitter. She felt guilty sometimes that she couldn’t remember them. After that, the state of New Mexico had placed her in the first of many foster homes.

She was bounced from home to home until she landed at Frank Matthews’ a few years ago. The only reason she stayed there was the other two kids that were placed with Frank shortly after she was. Abby and Charlotte had been three and five, respectively, when they arrived, and Liz had been 15. By that time, Liz had already witnessed their foster father’s true nature and she knew that she could not leave the girls with him. Frank Matthews put on a wonderful front when the social workers came around, but when they left he turned into a mean and dangerous drunk who only kept the kids around for the check which he used to buy more beer. Liz ended up taking whatever he dished out when he was drunk because she was trying to keep him away from the girls. She wasn’t stupid, she knew that they knew he beat her, but she lied to them anyway, saying that she tripped or fell. Now, two years later, Liz realized that she sometimes felt as if she were doing it to fool herself into believing it didn’t really happen.

About a month after she arrived, Liz had realized that Frank wasn’t going to put food in the house, so she got a job at the diner in town. She hated the job and the people who came in, but it gave her grocery money and that’s all she was concerned about. She had actually been lucky enough to strike a deal with a slightly drunken customer and get him to sell her his old car for about a hundred dollars, which was her entire savings at the time. She usually parked it next-door so Frank still didn’t know that she had it. Not that he was ever coherent long enough to care.

Just then, she heard an engine and a car stopped. no, it must be Frank, home early from the bars. She hadn’t realized it was that late already…and the girls hadn’t gotten anything to eat. She grabbed a bag of chips and ran towards their room. Tossing the bag through the door she closed it saying, “Girls, lock the door and don’t come out until I tell you that it’s okay…alright?” They nodded and went to sit on Abby’s bed with the chips. Liz turned hoping that he would just pass out on the couch and not be in the mood to fight.

TBC

And she takes another step
Slowly she opens the door
Check that he is sleeping
Pick up all the broken glass
And furniture on the floor
Been up half the night screaming
Now it's time to get away
Pack up the kids in the car
Another bruise to try and hide
Another alibi to write

Another ditch in the road
You keep moving
Another stop sign
You keep moving on
And the years go by so fast
Wonder how I ever made it through

And there are children to think of
Baby's asleep in the back seat
Wonder how they'll ever make it through this living nightmare
But the mind is an amazing thing
Full of candy dreams and new toys and another cheap hotel
Two beds and a coffee machine
But there are groceries to buy
And she knows she'll have to go home

Another ditch in the road
You keep moving
Another stop sign
You keep moving on
And the years go by so fast
Wonder how I ever made it through

Another bruise to try and hide
Another alibi to write
Another lonely highway in the black of the night
But there's hope in the darkness
You know you're going to make it

Another ditch in the road
You keep moving
Another stop sign
You keep moving on
And the years go by so fast
Silent fortress built to last
Wonder how I ever made it through


[ edited 29time(s), last at 22-Jan-2003 12:07:39 AM ]
posted on 13-Feb-2002 7:47:37 AM by Lilac Stardust
Thanks to everyone who left replies. I guess I'll keep going.

~LS
*angel*


A/N: reminder...the italics indicate thought, also song lyrics.


Chapter 2


“Liz! Where are you? Stupid bitch…” Frank grumbled, as he stumbled through the house. She could hear him rummaging around in the kitchen—looking for something to eat. She knew he wouldn’t find anything because the diner had kept her late tonight and she had not been able to stop for food. This isn’t good, she thought to herself. Quickly checking her apron, she realized that she might have enough from tips to order a pizza. Maybe this will keep him quiet.

“Frank, I’m right here. Look…I didn’t get a chance to get any groceries, but I thought I would use my tip money and order some pizza,” she said quietly.

“I don’t want any pizza! Where the hell is the food? Those damn brats must have eaten it again. I swear I don’t know why the hell I keep you kids around!”

“The girls didn’t eat the food…” she started to say.

“Don’t contradict me girl!”

“Frank…I’m sorry…I didn’t mean to…” she stammered as she began backing up.

“The hell you didn’t mean to!” he yelled, picking up a glass from the table and throwing it across the room towards Liz. She ducked and covered her head as it crashed into the wall behind her head. “You know that school of yours called again…they said you been skipping again. Wanna explain yourself missy?”

“It’s just that I had to work and there wasn’t anyone to cover my shifts so I had to go and…” she stuttered as he stalked towards her.

“If you fail outta school they will take the three of you outta here and I’ll lose my check,” he said menacingly. “And we wouldn’t want that to happen now would we?” He grabbed her shoulders and pushed her against the wall.

“Please Frank, just let me go to the store and I can get some food and everything will be okay.”

“God-damnit! Forget about the food!” he yelled, throwing her across the floor. “Just shut-up.”

“I’m sorry…” she sobbed.

“I said shut-up bitch!” he yelled again, only this time he started to hit her too. Liz curled up in a ball and forced her mind to turn off until he went away.


TBC...


And she takes another step
Slowly she opens the door
Check that he is sleeping
Pick up all the broken glass
And furniture on the floor
Been up half the night screaming
Now it's time to get away
Pack up the kids in the car
Another bruise to try and hide
Another alibi to write

Another ditch in the road
You keep moving
Another stop sign
You keep moving on
And the years go by so fast
Wonder how I ever made it through

And there are children to think of
Baby's asleep in the back seat
Wonder how they'll ever make it through this living nightmare
But the mind is an amazing thing
Full of candy dreams and new toys and another cheap hotel
Two beds and a coffee machine
But there are groceries to buy
And she knows she'll have to go home

Another ditch in the road
You keep moving
Another stop sign
You keep moving on
And the years go by so fast
Wonder how I ever made it through

Another bruise to try and hide
Another alibi to write
Another lonely highway in the black of the night
But there's hope in the darkness
You know you're going to make it

Another ditch in the road
You keep moving
Another stop sign
You keep moving on
And the years go by so fast
Silent fortress built to last
Wonder how I ever made it through




[ edited 3 time(s), last at 17-Feb-2002 1:11:45 PM ]
posted on 13-Feb-2002 1:08:50 PM by Lilac Stardust
Ok I think I have the hang of this now...sorry for my ignorance.

~LS
*angel*
posted on 13-Feb-2002 7:14:18 PM by Lilac Stardust
I realize these are short which is why I posted often. So I have a bit of this story written and I'll keep adding a new chapter as long as people leave replies..*big* Sorry to do that but I just wanna make sure people still like it before posting more. Oh and I didn't put the song at the end this time. If you would like me to continue doing that let me know...otherwise I won't.

'Til next time...

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 3

Frank stopped hitting and kicking her suddenly and stumbled off towards his room. She heard him collapse on his bed and start snoring.

Slowly she stood up, feeling instantly the bruises that were already forming. She tip-toed to his door and looked in. When she was sure that he was passed out for the night, she closed the door and quietly made her way to her room. She grabbed an old bulky long-sleeved tee off her bed and pulled it over her head. She crept down the hall again, this time stopping at the door to the girls’ room.

Knocking quietly she whispered, “Girls, it’s Lizzie. Open the door please…”

“Are you sure it’s you?” Abby whispered back.

“Of course silly, now let me in.”

She heard the soft click of the lock turning and the door cracked open. As she stepped inside she whispered, “I need you girls to grab your pajamas and some clothes and put them in a backpack okay? Charlotte, help your sister. Hurry girls, and stay quiet.”

Liz closed the door and went back to her room. She pulled her backpack out of the closet and began throwing clothes into it. Next, she stuffed in the small amount of food she hid in her closet for emergencies, mainly some cans of soup, crackers, and juice packs. The last thing to be thrown in was the envelope under her mattress that held roughly $150. It took her forever to save it up and she hoped it would get them far enough away from here. She zipped the bag and went back to the girls’ room. “Let’s go girls,” she whispered.

They tip-toed after her out of the house and to the car parked next door. “Hop in and buckle-up.” She got into the driver’s seat and started the ignition, hoping it wouldn’t wake Frank. She quickly backed up and headed for the closest road out of town.

Liz had no idea where she was headed and she really didn’t care as long as it wasn’t here.

TBC



[ edited 1 time(s), last at 15-Feb-2002 3:34:07 PM ]
posted on 14-Feb-2002 5:14:17 PM by Lilac Stardust
Thanks again for the replies. Enjoy and Happy Valentine's Day! Hope everyone has a great day. Oh and a preview for you: this is a very long and twisted story....and some things are meant to happen. Just imagine the fun I could have with that.*wink*

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 4

She had been driving for over three hours now and hadn’t seen any real signs of a town. The highway had no lights and the desert was almost pitch black except for the twinkling of a few stars. What have I done? she asked herself. I have no idea where we are going or what I’m going to do once we get there…

Looking into her rearview mirror she could see the girls, fast asleep leaning on each other. How am I going to feed them now? And who is going to look after them while I’m working?

Just as she was about to turn around and go back, she saw a sign appear out of the blackness. Welcome to Roswell. The alien town? How the hell did we end up here? Oh well, at least it’s somewhere to crash for the night. Ha crash...oh jeez, this could be interesting.

The town was quiet and deserted as she drove down the main street. The alien themed tourist traps were everywhere. A couple blocks down, she could see a small motel. I guess this is our stop for the night. Liz pulled the car to a stop in front of the office and got out. The girls were still sleeping in the backseat. Maybe I can convince the owners I’m alone and get the room cheaper.

A bell jingled above the office door as she walked in and an older lady looked up from her book. “Can I help you?” she asked.

“Umm yes I need a room for the night…I’m just passing through and I got tired so I decided to stop,” she added nervously.

“Name please…”

“Liz…Liz Campbell,” she replied. Please don’t ask me for ID!

“Alright Ms. Campbell, that’s twenty-five dollars—up front. And here’s your key. Number eight…last one on the end. Oh and welcome to Roswell…watch out for the aliens.”

‘Thank you,” Liz mumbled, handing the clerk the twenty-five dollars and grabbing the key.

She got back into the car and moved it to a spot in front of room number eight. It wasn’t such a bad motel…at least from the looks of it. And at least the people seemed friendly—strange but friendly.

“Charlotte,” she whispered, “wake up sweetie.”

The little girl opened her eyes and smiled at Liz.

“Let’s get the bags out of the trunk okay?”

Charlotte nodded and grabbed her and Liz’s backpacks, handing Liz hers. Liz put her bag on and reached back into the backseat to pick up a still sleeping Abby and carry her towards the motel room door.

“Charlotte I need you to get the key out of my pocket and open the door alright?”

“Okay Lizzie,” the little girl said, opening the door and walking into the dark room. Liz set Abby down on the first bed and clicked the nightstand lamp on. She pulled down the covers and helped Charlotte with her pajamas.

“Goodnight sweetie,” she whispered, tucking Charlotte in and kissing her forehead.

“Night Lizzie.”

Liz didn’t even bother to change out of her clothes. It would just remind her of how much she hurt. She turned the lock on the door and turned out the light. Pulling back the covers of the second bed, she promptly collapsed into it—her eyes closing the second her head hit the pillow.

TBC...



[ edited 1 time(s), last at 19-Feb-2002 12:40:57 PM ]
posted on 15-Feb-2002 3:00:12 PM by Lilac Stardust
So people aren't really leaving replies....kinda not too cool. Please just say something...a smiley face will be accepted! Again I know these are short and if people want...I can post more often. Also...things will start to happen very soon.

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 5

Liz awoke to sunlight streaming through the gaps in the curtains. She looked over at the clock on the nightstand…7:30…still early. The girls would most likely sleep for another few hours considering what had happened.

She slowly made her way to the small dingy bathroom, removed her clothes, and stepped into the steaming hot shower. She just stood there for a minute, letting the hot water hit her. As her body started to shake, she realized that she was crying. She had never cried when Frank hit her. She didn’t want to give him the satisfaction. But this time there was no one to see and she couldn’t hold it in any longer.

When the shaking finally subsided, Liz straightened up and grabbed the soap, trying to make herself presentable. She still had no idea what her final destination was. Maybe I’ll be able to think better after a cup of coffee.

She remembered passing a small alien-themed café last night and figured that would most likely be her best shot at a hot cup of coffee. She wrote a note for Charlotte, who could read, and pulled her purse out of her backpack.

A few minutes later she was standing in front of the ‘Crashdown Café.’ How corny can these people be? she laughed to herself. When she opened the door, she heard another bell. Paranoid much? Apparently she wasn’t the only one who noticed the bell as a girl, about her age, with blonde hair and wearing a green dress and antennae, and a dark-haired boy sitting at the counter, both turned to look at her. Liz immediately looked down at the floor and took a seat at the counter, a few seats away from the dark-haired boy. He looked over at her just as she looked up. Their eyes met for a second until she suddenly looked away. “Hi,” he said, smiling shyly at her.

“Hi,” she answered quietly.

“Are you new in town? I don’t think I’ve seen you here before…and I’m here all the time…I work at the UFO center across the street…” he said, pointing.

“Well, I’m just passing through,” she started, but was interrupted by the blonde waitress from earlier.

“Hey Evans, you better quit scaring off all my customers or start leaving better tips,” the girl said jokingly, then turned to Liz. “Hi, I’m Maria. Don’t mind him, he’s usually so quiet—I don’t know what’s gotten into him this morning.”

The boy blushed and stammered, “Jeez Maria, I was just trying to be nice.” He turned to look at Liz again, reaching his hand out to her. “I guess we haven’t been properly introduced have we? I’m Max Evans and my ever friendly waitress here is Maria Deluca.”

“Liz Campbell,” she replied, using the alias she had been using since entering Roswell, and reaching out to shake his hand. Somehow their eyes met again and they both just stared for a moment.


TBC...


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 19-Feb-2002 12:43:10 PM ]
posted on 16-Feb-2002 6:35:45 PM by Lilac Stardust
Yes there are aliens.*bounce* the only AU thing is Liz's background. Everything else can be assumed to be the same......until I decide otherwise *wink*

If anyone else has questions I will try to answer without giving anything away.

~LS
*angel*
posted on 16-Feb-2002 9:00:31 PM by Lilac Stardust
OK I guess one is better than nothing....I will stop whining now I promise...maybe..lol. Ok um as usual enjoy and leave happiness!

~LS
*angel*

Chapter 6

“Excuse me?!? Hello?!? Are you guys in there?” Maria said waving her hands around. Liz dropped Max’s hand and nervously looked away. What was I doing? Acting all goofy because of some guy? One I just met for that matter…

“I’m sorry I just need some coffee and then I have to be on my way…” Liz said quickly.

“Alrighty, well I’ll go get that for you then,” Maria said, walking towards the coffee machine. “Here you go,” she said, placing a cup of steaming coffee in front of Liz.

“Oh…uh…How much do I owe you?” Liz said, starting to dig through her purse, looking for some money.

“A dollar fifteen.”

“I got it,” Max said, pulling two dollars out of his pocket. “And keep the change for your tip.”

“You don't have to do that. I have money...I swear,” Liz said, still digging in her purse.

“Really, it’s okay. Don’t worry about it. Its just coffee. Besides, it will get Maria off my back about her tips for now,” he replied.

“In your dreams Evans,” Maria said, walking away.

“So where are you headed Liz?” Max asked.

“What?” Liz said, a little confused.

“You mentioned you were passing through before. I was just wondering where you were headed,” he explained.

“I really haven’t figured it out just yet.”

“Well, aren’t the Parkers looking for some help around here Maria?”

“Yeah I think I heard them say something like that,” Maria said.

“And I could help you look for an apartment that wouldn’t be too expensive. So what do you say Liz? Why don’t you stay in Roswell?” Max asked.

“I guess I don’t have any better options right now…”

“That's the spirit Liz,” he said, turning towards where Maria was standing behind the counter. “Hey Maria, is Mr. Parker around?”

“I’ll go look,” she said, sighing exaggeratedly as she headed for the office. She emerged a moment later with Jeff Parker, the owner of the Crashdown. “Mr. Parker, this is Liz. She heard we might be looking for another waitress around here and for some reason she is interested,” Maria explained, in her rather sarcastic way.

“Thanks Maria. Actually Liz, one of my servers quit yesterday, so I am in need of some help. When can you start?” Mr. Parker asked politely.

“Tomorrow?”

“Sounds great. The uniforms are in the back and Maria can help you with that. So I’ll see you tomorrow around 11 a.m.?”

“Yes sir, thank you so much. I really appreciate this.”

“Hey you’re the one helping me out. I’ll see you tomorrow,” Mr. Parker said as he went back to his office.

“So when do you want to start apartment hunting Liz?” Max asked.

“Actually, could I meet you back here a little later? I have something I need to take care of. Like around two or so?”

“Sure thing Liz,” Max replied, sounding a little disappointed.

“Oh Liz, the uniform!” Maria suddenly remembered.

“I almost forgot, thanks.”

When they got to the back room, Maria opened a utility closet pulling out a green dress, silver apron, and a pair of antennae.

“I hope you can fit into a small cause that’s all we have right now,” Maria said, handing Liz her uniform.

“It’s fine, thanks,” Liz said quietly.

“I’ll see you tomorrow then,” Maria said as she walked back into the diner.

Oh no, I forgot about the girls! What am I going to do with them while I’m at work?

“Mr. Parker?” she asked, poking her head into his office. “Um...sir, my sisters are staying with me and I don’t have anywhere for them to go while I am here at work...do you think that they could come here for a few days until I find a sitter?”

“As long as they stay out of trouble,” he said.

“Thank you so much again…I mean it…you saved me.”

“Hey Liz,” Maria said, popping her head back into the backroom. “You get locker number five, by the way.”

TBC...

posted on 17-Feb-2002 12:51:06 PM by Lilac Stardust
Oh thank you thank you thank you for the feedback! You guys made me so happy!*bounce**bounce*Ok here's the next part. I have ten chapters written right now so once I get to ten I might not be able to post everyday. Just keep that in mind.

~LS
*angel*


*Note: I temporarily switch to Michael’s POV at the end of this chapter…don’t get scared.


Chapter 7


As Liz was about to leave the back room, a spikey-haired boy rushed in and threw his stuff in a locker.

“Hey,” he said nonchalantly as he turned around. “You the new waitress?” he asked, gesturing to the uniform in her arms.

“Yeah, I guess I am.”

“Name’s Michael. I’m one of the cooks around here,” he said, extending his hand towards her.

“Liz Campbell,” she said quietly, shaking his hand.

Liz was about to let go of Michael’s hand when he noticed a small bruise on her wrist. “Hey what’s this?” he asked, pulling her arm towards him to see.

“It’s nothing…I just…I must have hit it on the car door…I’m kinda clumsy,” she stammered, pulling away.

“You sure?” he said hesitantly.

“I’m fine…really.”

“If you say so…” Michael said, still unsure, but as he was already late for work he decided to head to the kitchen.

Whew…that was close…I better get back to the motel before anything else happens, Liz thought, deciding to leave by the staff entrance she had seen Michael use. Not that I don’t want to see Max, I just really need to get back to the girls.

In her rush to leave, she didn’t notice someone watching her. Michael had been peering through the small window in the door. There is definitely something going on with her, he thought as he finally made his way into the kitchen.

“Well look who finally decides to show up for work. You’re late you know,” Maria said, leaning on the counter between the diner and the kitchen.

“Leave me alone. I had stuff to take care of,” he replied.

“I’m sure it was soooo important,” she said, receiving only a scowl in response. She rolled her eyes at him and sighed exaggeratedly. “I have customers to take care of,” she said turning and walking away.

“Hey Michael,” Max said from his place at the counter. “Did you happen to see the new waitress back there?”

“Yeah, but she left. What’s it to you anyway Max?” Michael said when he noticed Max’s expression change. Lowering his voice a little so that no one would hear his next comment he said, “Did you suddenly forget a certain childhood pact?”

“I didn’t forget anything Michael. I’m just…trying to be nice. She’s new in town and I kinda offered to help her find an apartment,” Max said, looking anywhere but directly at Michael when he finished.

“You what?!? You know the rule Max. We don’t get close to people. We keep to ourselves. Is any of this sounding familiar to you?”

“The rule sucks.”

“Well Maxwell, you’re the one who made it up. And besides, what if she found out about how we aren’t from around here and turned us in?”

“Michael, its not like we wear signs around our necks broadcasting our secret. And Liz isn’t like that. I know I just met her, but I feel like I’ve known her forever. And I know she wouldn’t do that. I can just tell…”

“Aww geez Max. What have you gotten yourself into?” Michael said, sighing and holding his head. “Ok here’s the plan Max. There is an apartment open where I live. Take her there. At least we can keep an eye on her if we need to.”

“Thanks Michael, you’re the best,” Max said, gathering his things. “I gotta get to work. See you later.”

Michael shook his head as he watched Max leave. Definitely something going on…

TBC...


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 19-Feb-2002 12:51:44 PM ]
posted on 18-Feb-2002 4:38:37 PM by Lilac Stardust
Hey guys thanks for all the feedback......so appreciate it. As to the questions the only one I can answer is yes there are aliens and unless otherwise stated everything besides Liz's past can be assumed to be the same (until I say differently *wink*). Some comments have definitely given me ideas as to details I hadnt thought of before so thank you very much. *bounce*You never know how you are going to influence someone! Alrighty enjoy!

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 8

Liz sighed as she opened the motel room door. She felt as if she could sleep for a week and still be exhausted. But the girls needed her, so sleep could wait for now.

It was then that she noticed the girls…sitting on the edge of the bed, still in their pajamas, watching cartoons, and munching on crackers and juice boxes. I should have figured that Charlotte would find the food stash, she thought. Just then, Abby finally looked up from the cartoons and noticed her standing there by the door.

“Lizzzzie! You came back!” the little girl cried, running towards Liz and wrapping her small arms around Liz’s legs. Her sister wasn’t far behind, but at the dignified age of seven, she seemed to hold herself back a bit.

Liz bent down to hug them both saying, “Of course I did silly!” As she stood up, she looked around a little and said, “Um…we’re going to be staying here for awhile girls…so I have to go find us an apartment this afternoon. You girls might need to come along, I don’t want to leave you by yourselves for too long.”

“Hey Liz,” Charlotte said hesitantly, “if we are going to stay here, does that mean we can go to school?”

“Maybe sweetie, we’ll see okay?” Liz said.

“Alright,” Charlotte replied, looking slightly excited.

Even though Charlotte was very young, she already seemed to love school as much as Liz had, before she had to stop going. For Liz, it had been something in her life that she was good at and had complete control over. While she wasn’t actually related to either of the girls by blood, she did consider them her sisters and she felt some kind of connection to Charlotte because of their shared interest in schoolwork. For this reason she made herself promise to look into registering the girls for school.

“What do you say we break out some of those breakfast bars and finish watching some cartoons?” Liz asked.

“Yay!” the girls both replied, running back to the bed and jumping on it as Liz rummaged through her backpack looking for the promised breakfast bars.

“Got them!” she yelled as she ran to the bed to join them, being just a bit more careful not to land on any bruises. Liz couldn’t remember the last time she had been able to really kick back and hang out with the girls. She missed being able to act like the teenager she was instead of the grown-up she was forced to be. But she did what she needed to do because otherwise the girls would be left for Frank to care for, or not in his case, or worse. She sighed and stretched out on her stomach, resting her head on her folded arms in front of her. She could slowly feel unconsciousness taking over and she didn’t have the strength to fight it.

The next thing she knew, she heard whispers, specifically those of two little girls. She opened her eyes just a crack and saw two small faces peering at her from the end of the bed.

“Look what you did Abby…you woke up Lizzie,” Charlotte said, chastising her little sister.

“Sorry Lizzie. You looked like you really needed to take a nap,” the little girl said matter-of-factly as if she was the adult and Liz was the little girl.

“I guess I did hun. Don’t worry about waking me up though. I think it’s about time we all got up and got dressed,” Liz said. “Abby why don’t you let me help you?”

“I can do it Lizzie. I’m a big girl remember?”

“I know. I just want to make sure you at least match today, alright? No more bright orange and red together this time,” Liz said, smiling.

“You’re no fun.”

“You forget that’s my job—to make sure you don’t have any fun. Besides, I want you girls to meet some people today and I need you to make a good impression.”

“We will Liz,” Charlotte said, speaking for both of them.

“You girls need to promise me that if anyone asks you about what happened before we came here or where our parents are, you won’t tell them.”

“But isn’t that lying?” Charlotte asked.

“Not really sweetie. ‘Cause see, we aren’t really going to lie we just aren’t going to say anything alright? Just say ‘I don’t really wanna talk about it.’ If we tell anyone we ran away from Frank, they might make us go back. Or worse, they might send us to new homes and separate us. You don’t want that do you?”

“Oh no Lizzie. We don’t want to leave you,” Charlotte said quickly, afraid to be split up from her only ‘family.’

“Don’t let them take us away Lizzie,” Abby said, looking as if she was about to cry.

“I’m going to do my best. I promise,” Liz said, hugging Abby and trying to comfort her.


TBC...


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 19-Feb-2002 12:44:37 PM ]
posted on 19-Feb-2002 3:03:51 PM by Lilac Stardust
Would anyone be real upset if Tess was not introduced like ever? *big*

There should be at least appearances by everyone else eventually...not sure about kyle he may just be mentioned...im not positive how much of a role he plays yet *wink*

I will probably post the next part tonite...thanx for the feedback.

~LS
*angel*
posted on 19-Feb-2002 8:01:42 PM by Lilac Stardust
Thanks for the feedback as usual...just another reminder that I only have one more chapter already written after this...so it may take me a little bit to post after chapter 10. please be patient with me.

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 9

Amazingly, forty-five minutes later both girls were dressed and ready. Liz put all of their belongings back into the trunk of her car and the girls waited there while Liz went to the office to check out.

Liz looked at her watch as she made her way out of the office…11:15 A.M. Perfect, she thought, just enough time to get the girls some lunch before we meet up with Max.

Having found her money and still being pretty unfamiliar with the town, Liz decided their best option would be to head back to the Crashdown. The girls were fascinated with the alien-themed restaurant. They kept looking around at the walls and laughing. Maria was still working, but she had yet to notice Liz’s presence in a booth towards the back. Liz was almost relieved that Maria hadn’t noticed her; she didn’t feel like explaining the girls to her co-worker yet. But she knew that she would have to in about 30 seconds, as Maria finally headed to the table to take their orders.

“Hey Liz, long time no see,” Maria said in her usual tone, “Who are the munchkins?”

“We’re not munchkins! We’re girls!” Abby said indignantly.

“Abby, she knows that. She was only joking,” Liz said, turning back to Maria. “Maria, these are my sisters, Charlotte and Abby,” she explained, pleading with her eyes that Maria wouldn’t ask for more of an explanation.

“Hey girls. What can I get you ladies to eat this afternoon?”

“Two burgers,” Liz said quickly, before the girls tried to order something out of their price range.

“Two? Are you sure? I mean there are three of you…” Maria asked, a little confused.

“Yeah, well…I’m not all that hungry. And Abby never finishes anything, so I can have a bite of hers…” Liz said, trying to make up a believable excuse.

“I will today Liz. I could eat an elephant I’m so hungry!” the little girl interrupted.

Liz noticed that Maria was giving her a strange look again. She quickly checked her wallet…plenty for now—at least until I have a rent bill to pay… “I guess you better make that three.”

“Coming right up,” Maria replied, stuffing her order pad back into her apron and walking away.

Maria came back a few minutes later with the food. She set it on the table, but didn’t immediately leave. “So Liz, have you had a chance to take a look around this huge metropolis we all call Roswell?”

“No, not really. I’m sure I’ll get around to it eventually though,” Liz said, smiling slightly at Maria’s joke.

“Well, I know this is going to seem a little out of the blue, cause I mean you just met me this morning and I’ve probably erased any doubt in your mind that I’m totally crazy…” Maria said babbling on a bit, “but I get off work in like half an hour and if you’re interested…I could totally take you on a little driving tour of Roswell. You would be back in plenty of time to meet up with Max.” She turned to the girls and said, “And we have a really cool playground by my house that we could go see.”

The girls’ eyes lit up immediately. “Oh can we Lizzie? Please, please, pretty please with sugar on top? We swear we’ll be good,” they both said almost at once.

“I guess it couldn’t hurt. And we do have some time to spare,” Liz said, giving in.

“Yay!” the girls and Maria all said in unison.

“Well I better get back to work before Mr. Parker starts looking for another new waitress,” Maria said, still smiling, “Be ready to go in half an hour okay?” And with that, she wandered over to her other tables, which she had been neglecting while talking with Liz.

The time seemed to pass quickly as they waited for Maria to finish her shift. Liz felt like only moments had passed when it had in fact been the whole half an hour. Before she knew it, Maria was standing in front of them, completely changed out of her work clothes and trying to get Liz’s attention.

“Whoo-hoo? Liz? Are you in there chica?” Maria said, looking at her sideways.

“Sorry, I guess I kinda spaced out there for a little bit.”

“Well let’s get this show on the road already! Come on, I’ll race ya to my car…it’s the red Jetta parked across the street!” Maria said, already taking off.

“Hey! No fair!” the girls said, chasing after her.

Liz rolled her eyes, sighed, and followed after them. By the time Liz reached the car, Maria and the girls were already inside and waiting for her.

“You’re slow Lizzie,” Abby said.

“No, I’m just tired. Thank goodness this isn’t a walking tour,” Liz said as she entered the passenger side of the little Jetta.

Maria showed them all the sights of Roswell as promised and ended their tour at the local playground. Liz and Maria sat on two swings as the girls ran around playing.

“Hey Liz, I had a lot of fun hanging out today. With my attitude, I don’t make friends too easily…I mean, I think Alex may qualify as my only friend up to this point, and it’s not the same with him being a guy. You know that I’ve never really had another girl to hang out with …I’m sorry—I’m rambling again. What I’m trying to say here is, I’m glad you came to Roswell and I hope we can be friends.”

Liz smiled a little. “I don’t think I’ve ever had anyone I would consider a ‘friend.’ I’ve had acquaintances, classmates, but never any real friends.”

“We’ll then we definitely have to be friends now. I think you need someone like me around to cheer you up once in a while. You are entirely too gloomy and quiet,” Maria said, leaning over and embracing her new friend.

“Thanks Maria. You know I think you may be right.”

“Of course I am. Now I’ll tell you what. As your first official friend, I am going to offer to baby-sit your little sisters for you while you go meet Max and find your new apartment. And as a friend, you will be grateful and accept and take the chance before I change my mind.”

“Are you sure? They can be a handful…”

“Yeah I’m sure. I may be crazy, but I think you need some time off from these munchkins for a few hours. Just come on over to my house when you guys are finished,” she said, handing Liz a piece of paper with her address scribbled on it.

“Maria, I don’t know how to thank you…”

“You don’t have to. That’s what friends do! They help each other out. Now get out of here before I change my mind already!”

Liz yelled over to the girls explaining that they would stay with Maria and that she would see them later before hurriedly running off towards the Crashdown.

TBC...



[ edited 1 time(s), last at 19-Feb-2002 8:05:13 PM ]
posted on 20-Feb-2002 11:25:56 PM by Lilac Stardust
Ok lotsa luv to all the people who left feedback! Warning: It will be a few days before I post the next chapter as it isnt written yet and I am extremely busy this weekend. Second warning: this is a long chapter (at least compared to the others). Luv to ya all........

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 10


Luckily for Liz, the playground where their ‘tour’ ended was only a few blocks away from the Crashdown. As she walked into the little café, she looked down at her watch…1:50 PM, right on time. At least I’ll have a minute or two to rest before he gets here. She was in for a surprise though when she looked up and noticed that Max was already sitting at the counter. “Am I late?” she asked, walking towards where he was sitting. She tapped her watch and held it up to her ear, checking to see if it had stopped.

“No,” he said, smiling at her antics. “I asked my boss Milton if I could take a half day and he sent me home about a half an hour ago. So I’m early—you’re not late.”

“Oh, well good. So where are we headed?”

“Well, they’re not the most beautiful apartments, but there aren’t too many critters and the rent is affordable. My Jeep is parked out back if you’re ready,” he said, standing up and gesturing towards the door.

“As ready as I’ll ever be I guess…” she said turning towards the door. Suddenly she stopped cold and spun around. Max failed to notice soon enough and they collided. He grabbed onto her arms to keep her from stumbling backwards. “Did you say critters?” Liz asked, unmoving and now staring at Max.

“Are you okay?” he asked, looking concerned. When she slowly nodded her head, he released her arms and stepped back. “It was…uh…just a joke,” he said, smiling a little. “Not any real critters that I know of living there. We should be going. The renting office likes to close early if they aren’t busy.”

She followed him out of the Crashdown and out back to the Jeep. It was pretty old looking, but Liz had learned that a car could look like crap and still run well. Her own car was no beauty, but it still worked. As Max started the car and pulled away, Liz leaned back and closed her eyes, enjoying the feeling of freedom as the wind blew through her hair.

It was a short drive to the apartment complex—but Max enjoyed every second of it. He couldn’t believe how peaceful and relaxed she looked right now. Even though he had just met her this morning, he could already tell that she had something weighing on her mind…some burden she was carrying on her own. There was a certain sadness and weariness about her. He knew the signs all too well. He felt the same way sometimes—worrying about someone finding out the truth about him, his sister Isabel, and their friend Michael. Being the unofficial leader of the group was tiresome and a little lonely. Max sighed and looked over at her again. He knew he was already in too deep.

Max pulled to a halt in front of a cluster of small dark and worn-down buildings. One in the middle had a sign on the door reading ‘Office.’ “This is it,” he said, stepping out of the Jeep and walking around to the passenger side to wait for Liz.

“I thought you said this place wasn’t that nice. It looks clean and the roof doesn’t look like it has any holes. Would I get one of those all to myself?” Liz asked, surveying her surroundings.

“You think it’s a nice place?” Max asked disbelievingly.

“You should have seen the last place I was living,” Liz said sarcastically.

“Was it really that bad? Why did you stay there if it was so horrible?”

“I don’t really wanna talk about it Max. I’m sorry I brought it up. Just forget about it.”

“Are you sure? I know we just met this morning Liz, but I’d like to be able to help you with whatever is going on…if I can.”

“Max, please don’t worry okay? I have everything under control. I promise. Please just believe me.”

“I believe you Liz. I just want you to know that you can trust me. Just in case…” he said, pausing a moment. “We better get in there already before they close up.”

“Sounds like a plan to me,” Liz said, quickly accepting the change of subject.

The office door creaked a little as they opened it and stepped into the dimly lit room. A short, heavy-set, middle-aged man sat behind the desk watching a TV in the corner of the room. “Hey there. Come on in,” he said as he noticed Max and Liz’s entrance. He stood up and extended his hand to Max and then to Liz. “Jim Phillips. I’m the manager here. You here about the unit for rent?”

“Yeah, actually she is. I’m just here to help her out. My friend Michael Guerin rents from you…number eight I think,” Max said.

“Ah yes…Mr. Guerin. Quiet boy…pays his rent on time though. Hope you can do the same,” Mr. Phillips said, gesturing towards Liz.

“I will sir. I already have a job and I have some money to pay for the first month,” Liz said, speaking up for the first time.

“Glad to hear it. Would you like to go see it then?” he asked, already moving towards the door.

“That would be great,” she said, looking to Max for approval. He nodded and moved to open the door for the other man.

“Thanks. It’s number four that is open. Now will it just be you or do you plan on a roommate?” Mr. Phillips asked, looking at Max.

“Actually sir, I have two younger sisters that will be staying with me. They aren’t loud and won’t cause any trouble, I promise,” Liz answered, purposely not looking at Max when she said this.

“That’s fine,” the manager said, stopping in front of number four. He took a set of keys out of his pocket and searched for the one with a small number four written on it. “Here we go.”

They stepped inside the small apartment and Mr. Phillips moved aside to let Max and Liz look around. “This is great,” Liz said, impressed with the space.

“There is a bedroom in the back and next to that you’ll find the bathroom. The kitchen’s just through here,” he said gesturing to a doorway to his left. “The couch is a pull-out bed. So there should be enough room.”

“It’s perfect,” Liz said, smiling and almost jumping up and down from excitement. “When can I move in?”

“As soon as you sign the paperwork and pay the first month’s rent,” Mr. Phillips said, almost smiling himself at Liz’s excitement.

“How much is that gonna be?” she asked, a little uncertain now.

“Well rent’s about $150 a month or $75 every two weeks if you want to set it up that way.”

“That would be great…can we sign those forms now?”

“It would be my pleasure, if you’ll just follow me back to the office Miss,” Mr. Phillips said, leading them out of the apartment.

“Max do you think you could wait for me in the Jeep?” Liz asked, as they were about to step into the office.

“Sure, if you want me to…I’ll just be right out here,” Max said, hopping into the Jeep and making himself comfortable.

Liz filled out the forms quickly and dug $75 out of her wallet. “I hope it’s ok if I do the half now and half in two weeks thing…I only have $100 right now, but I should be getting paid in a week or two—so I can get it to you then.”

“It’s okay, I understand. Most of my tenants are low-income which is why I allow them to pay rent twice a month if they want. That’s when paychecks seem to come in,” Mr. Phillips said, glancing down at the forms Liz handed him. “It’s nice doing business with you…uh…Ms. Mitchell is it?”

“Yes sir. That’s me. I don’t usually go by my legal name because of issues with my family…but I’m sure that’s more than you wanted to know…so I’ll just stop talking right about now,” Liz said, stumbling over her words.

“You don’t have to explain anything. Everyone here has a story, but they all keep it to themselves,” he explained, handing her a key. “Well you have a nice day and I guess we’ll be seein’ you around.”


TBC...



[ edited 2 time(s), last at 21-Feb-2002 4:29:13 PM ]
posted on 5-Mar-2002 1:42:46 PM by Lilac Stardust
So sorry it is taking me so long to post a new chapter but I was so busy with midterms and all.....I hope you all understand. in any case, I am now on spring break so lots of happy writing time and sleep time for me. I will have a new chapter very soon I promise. thanks to anyone who is still reading this. you don't know how much that means to me.

~LS
*angel*
posted on 7-Mar-2002 2:48:15 PM by Lilac Stardust
ok sorry again for the delay...also I keep trying to get to certain events that I want to happen but the charcters wont let me lol...enjoy and please please please leave feedback..*bounce* *bounce*....the more feedback the happier I am and therefore more inclined to write...*bounce* lol

~LS
*angel*

reminder & note: italics indicate thought ...I let you into max's head for a second or two as I did with michael earlier...dont get scared...lol

Chapter 11

Liz had a smile on her face as she exited the office. Maybe things are finally starting to look up, she thought to herself.

Max noticed her presence and leaned over to open the passenger side door for her. "So…everything go alright in there?" he asked as she got in the Jeep.

"Perfect," she said, smiling more than he had seen all day. "I do have one favor to ask of you though."

"Anything," Max said without hesitation.

"Do you think we could stop at Maria's for just a minute before you drop me back at my car?"

"Of course. What do you need there Liz?"

"I need to pick up my sisters. Maria is babysitting for me…" Liz said quietly with a worried look on her face again. How am I gonna explain this to him?

"Yeah I heard you tell Mr. Phillips about them. So where are your parents Liz? I mean…I don't mean to pry or anything, but you being out on your own is one thing, but to have two little girls with you is another thing altogether."

"It's a bit of a long story Max. I don't think you want to get tangled up in my problems."

"Liz, I have all the time in the world. And didn't I tell you earlier that you can trust me? If there's something going on…you can tell me. I know what it's like to have the weight of the world on your shoulders and no one to talk to about it. Talking might help…"

"Ok look, I really need to get the girls and get settled in my new place, but if you want to come by tonight around eleven o'clock, we can talk then. Alright?"

"I'm sorry Liz. I didn't mean to upset you. I'm just concerned…"

"I know I know…it's just not something I like to talk about. There are a lot of painful memories and I'm just trying to keep the girls safe. Can we just drop it for now?"

"Sure. We should be going anyway," Max said, finally turning the key and starting the Jeep. They drove the entire way to Maria's in silence. Liz hopped out of the Jeep as soon as they pulled up.

"I'll be right back," she said over her shoulder.

She reappeared a few minutes later with two little girls in tow. To Max's surprise, they looked nothing like Liz. They both had curly strawberry blonde hair, big smiles on their faces, and soft blue eyes. When Liz had referred to them as her sisters, he had assumed she meant biological. He had already memorized the deep chocolate brown of Liz's eyes and was enough of a 'science nerd,' as his sister liked to say, to know that two girls with blue eyes could only mean one thing...Liz and her sisters did not share the same parents. This keeps getting more and more complicated…he thought.

"Max, I would like you to meet my sisters, Charlotte and Abby. Abby, what's wrong with you?" she said, dragging the smaller girl out from behind her and turning back to Max. "I don't know what is wrong with her…she is usually so outgoing."

The little girl tugged on the end of Liz's shirt. "Lizzie, he's a boy. What if he's mean like Frank?" she whispered a little too loudly.

"Abby sweetie, it's ok. He's very nice and he helped me find our new apartment. I promise ok?" Liz said, trying to reassure her. Abby nodded and smiled again.

"It's very nice to meet you," Max said finally, extending his hand first to Charlotte and then to Abby.

Liz couldn't help but smile when she noticed that he didn't just shake their hands, but instead, like the true gentleman that he appeared to be, he brought their small hands to his lips and kissed them, causing both girls to giggle and blush. "We had better get moving Max. I still have to show the girls the apartment and maybe go do a little grocery shopping if I have time…" Liz said, receiving the expected big smiles from the girls at the mention of the grocery store.

"Everybody climb on in then. Next stop: Crashdown Café…" Max said, pulling away after making sure the girls were settled into the back seat.

When they finally arrived back at the Crashdown, Liz stepped out of the Jeep, making room for the girls to get out, and then turned back towards Max. "Max I can't thank you enough…I mean I only met you this morning and already you've helped me find a place to live and basically made it possible for me to stay in Roswell. It means a lot to me…" she said, almost at a loss for words.

"Hey don't worry about it alright…we are still gonna talk later tonight right?"

"Yeah of course."

"Well I guess I'll see you then," he said, waving as he drove away.

"I guess we should go get the car and go see our new apartment…what do you say girls?" Liz asked, trying to get them excited.

"Yay," they yelled in unison.

"Come on let's go," she said, taking their hands and walking towards their parked car.

TBC…

posted on 15-Mar-2002 3:27:26 PM by Lilac Stardust
Thanks for reviews *bounce* *bounce* luv u all...keep leavin 'em and I'll keep postin it. *wink* lol. And definitely if you have questions/suggestions/etc. feel free to leave 'em and you never know you might inspire me.

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 12

Having left their last ‘home’ so quickly, Liz and the girls had brought little with them. However, with the excitement of a new place, a trip to the grocery store, and two little girls, Liz had barely had a chance to sit down until about five minutes ago when the girls fell asleep in the bedroom. She was currently sitting on the old worn-out couch with her feet on a small coffee table, eyes closed, simply soaking in the quiet. Looks like I’m going to be the one on the pull-out couch, she thought, if only I had the energy to actually pull it out…

Knock knock knock

Liz was startled out of her thoughts by a quiet knocking on the front door. Her senses automatically went into alert. Oh no…Frank must have found us… She slowly tiptoed to the door and looked out the peephole. She let out a sigh of relief and almost slumped down against the door when she saw Max standing there. Her mind let her process now that the knock had only been that, a quiet knock, not a loud pounding, which would have resulted from a visit from Frank.

Knock knock knock

She quickly undid the lock and opened the door to find a slightly concerned looking Max. “Sorry, I was uh…I uh…I kind of fell asleep and didn’t hear you knock,” she said, stepping back to let him in.

“Don’t worry about it. It’s probably my fault for coming over so late. I should have known you would be tired,” Max said, stuffing his hands in his pockets, and looking at the ground.

“Hey I agreed didn’t I? Why don’t you come in and sit down. The girls are asleep in the bedroom so I’m afraid we have to be a little quiet. There is no way I want to wake them again,” Liz joked, leading him to the couch and sitting down.

He followed suit and they sat there in uncomfortable silence for a minute or two, both of them knowing that he was here to talk.

“Look Liz, you know I don’t want to invade your privacy or anything…” he said, breaking the silence, “I’m just concerned and I want to help, but you have to let me.”

She took a deep breath and sighed. “Well what do you want to know?” she asked tentatively.

“Um…well, first of all…where are your parents Liz? I mean you don’t see many girls your age who are totally responsible for their younger sisters.”

“I don’t know where my parents are,” she stated matter-of-factly. “I never met them. I was adopted as an infant, but my adopted parents were killed in a car crash when I was still very young. I don’t even remember them…I’ve been bounced around the foster care system ever since.”

“I guess that kind of answers my next question then,” he said.

“Which was…?”

“You’re not actually related to Charlotte and Abby are you?”

“You knew? But how?” she asked, surprise evident in her voice.

“My favorite subject has always been science. Especially biology…”

“I don’t see what that has to do with anything Max.”

“Your eyes,” he said, “they’re brown.”

“And?” she asked, still confused.

“Well, the girls both have blue eyes. It’s simple genetics really. The way eye color is inherited…to have two children with blue eyes, both parents would have to also have blue eyes, which would make your brown eyes impossible.”

“Oh,” she said, finally understanding what he had been getting at. “Yeah, the girls are related to each other, but not to me. I don’t know the exact story of how they ended up in foster care, it was something about their mother being killed in a drug deal gone bad if I remember correctly. We were in the same foster home for the past two years.”

“So what brought you to Roswell then?”

“Look Max, I’m not here legally if that’s what you’re asking. But you have to believe me that I can’t go back where I came from and I won't let the girls be taken back, either,” she said vehemently.

“Liz it’s ok,” he said defensively, throwing his hands up in a ‘don’t shoot’ kind of position. “I’m not going to turn you in. I swear,” he said as he relaxed back against the couch. “So what’s your real name then, cause I’m betting it’s not Liz Campbell.”

“Well it is Liz. Liz Mitchell to be exact. I just changed my last name so we couldn’t be tracked as easily,” she said. She suddenly stood up and started to pace. “You know Max, I just thought about it, but I don’t even know what my real name is. The Mitchells were my adoptive parents, so that’s my official name, but I don’t know what my real name is,” she said, almost whispering the last part.

Max stood up and walked over to where she was standing. “Hey,” he said, gently lifting her chin from her chest and forcing her to look at him, “it’s just a name…it doesn’t mean anything. It doesn’t change who you are—inside.”

She stared into his eyes for a moment, then completely surprised him by throwing her arms around him and resting her cheek against his chest. He instinctively wrapped his arms around her and just stood there holding her.

“Thank you Max,” she murmured into his shirt.

“For what?” he asked, still somewhat in shock.

“For caring, for being here…” she said, finally looking up at him again. She released him, but reached for his hand, leading him back to the couch.

When they were both seated on the couch again, with Liz still holding onto his hand, he looked at her and asked, “Liz, why are you running?” When she didn’t answer immediately, he continued, “Is it because of the bruises Michael saw on your arm?” She looked scared suddenly, but he held onto her hand, refusing to let her run. “Is it that Frank guy that Abby is scared of?”

Liz started crying, her body shaking as she sobbed.

“Liz, I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have asked. I didn’t want to make you cry,” he said, desperately trying to comfort her.

“No, it’s not your fault. You’re right…all of it…” she said between sobs, “He was our foster father…I was just trying to protect the girls…but I just couldn’t take it anymore…I had to leave.”

He pulled her into his arms and held her, running his hands up and down her back to soothe her. “Shhhh it’s okay. I won’t let anything happen to you. Shhhhh…”

When she had finally calmed down, he pulled back to look at her. Her eyes were half closed and he realized how tired she must be after all she had gone through that day. “Why don’t you lay down for a minute and rest?” he said, patting his knee to indicate that she could use his lap as a pillow.

“Okay,” she said, yawning and stretching out on the couch. She lay on her side facing away from him and he began to stroke her hair, smoothing it away from her face. “Max?” she asked sleepily.

“Yeah Liz?”

“Could you stay with me awhile?”

“Sure Liz. Anything you want…”


TBC…

posted on 16-Mar-2002 1:21:51 PM by Lilac Stardust
for anyone who is reading this story...I made a wallpaper for it if anyone wants to check it out. *bounce* *bounce* If you do happen to check it out let me know what you think.

I'm just going to post the link to it cause its kind of a big pic being wallpaper size and all

http://www.geocities.com/gstigger16/HitD.html

'til next time

~LS
*angel*

[ edited 4 time(s), last at 16-Mar-2002 2:03:53 PM ]
posted on 26-Mar-2002 8:38:19 PM by Lilac Stardust
sorry it took me so long guys but as usual I got busy. but I worked hard on this and I do hope you enjoy it.*bounce**bounce*
please pretty please leave me feedback...

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 13

Liz awoke early and was momentarily surprised to feel an arm resting along her back. She looked up to see Max, his eyes closed and his head resting against the back of the couch. She let herself just lie there for a moment, soaking in the feeling of peace she got from being this close to him. She could almost pretend for a minute that she wasn’t a runaway responsible for two small children; that she didn’t have the weight of the world on her shoulders, that she was just a normal teenage girl who had the luxury of being able to date boys.

It was then that she heard the alarm she had set the night before start to go off. Nine-thirty already?

Max’s eyes fluttered for a second or two as he tightened his hold on the girl in his arms, not wanting to wake from what just had to be a dream. He opened his eyes finally and looked down to see the most beautiful girl, with her head in his lap and fingers entwined with his own, smiling up at him.

“Good morning sleepyhead,” she said, “I bet your parents are going to kill you for not coming home last night.”

He laughed a little. “You’re probably right. I’ll just tell them I fell asleep on Michael’s couch and wasn’t able to call. It’ll be fine. The one I really have to worry about is Izzy.”

“Izzy?” Liz asked curiously, wondering if this was his girlfriend.

“My sister Isabel. I’m sure to get a lecture from her.”

“You better get going then,” she said, sitting up and smoothing her hair back behind her ears. “I start work today anyway. I wanna be there on time. Don’t want to make a bad first impression or anything.”

“Yeah, I have to work too. Maybe I’ll stop by on my lunch break,” Max said, stretching his arms above his head.

Liz stood up and walked him to the door. “That would be nice Max.”

“Well I guess I’ll see you then…” he said, looking uncertain for half a second, then pulling her to him for a quick hug. “Bye Liz.”

“Bye Max,” she said as he released her and then walked out the door. She closed it behind him and leaned back against it, sighing.

Just then, Liz heard a doorknob turn and looked to see Charlotte peeking out from the bedroom. The little girl pulled the door shut behind her and tiptoed over to Liz.

“Is everything okay Lizzie?” she asked.

“Yeah sweetie, I think it’s gonna be alright now.”

“Is Max gonna take care of you?” Charlotte continued, causing a look of surprise from Liz. “Cause you’re always taking care of us, but you don’t have anyone to take care of you…”

“I think he would like to…” Liz said, more to herself than to Charlotte.

“Good. I like him, he’s nice—not mean like Frank at all.”

“You know what? I have to work today,” Liz said, suddenly changing the subject, “and you and your sister get to come with me. So you better go wake Abby and get dressed.”

“Okay,” Charlotte said, as she scampered off to the bedroom.

Liz took advantage of the moment alone by quickly hopping in the shower and getting dressed.

Before she knew it, they were parking in a small lot behind the Crashdown and Liz was giving the girls a last minute warning. “Now Mr. Parker was very nice to let you girls hang out here while I’m working so please don’t make him regret it,” she said, running her hands down over the front of her uniform, trying to smooth out invisible wrinkles. They entered through the employee entrance, the back door, and saw Mr. Parker emerge from the main dining room.

“Ah…Liz, right on time. Glad to see it. I assume these are your sisters?” he asked, smiling as he looked over at the girls, who were currently hiding behind Liz’s legs.

“Yes sir. Charlotte and Abby,” she said, pulling the girls out from behind her. “Girls, this is my boss, Mr. Parker. Say hi.”

“Hi,” they said in unison.

“Well girls, as long as we aren’t too busy, you can sit out in the dining room—just no running around, okay? But if we get very crowded, you need to come hang out back here,” he said, and then turned to Liz. “They can have some soft drinks while they’re here, if they want Liz. I have to get back to my paperwork, so if you have any questions—just ask Maria.”

“Okay, thank you sir,” Liz said as she ushered the girls into the dining room.

Upon entering, Liz’s eyes immediately fell on Maria. She was leaning on the counter talking to a teenage boy who was sitting at the counter with a laptop open. Maria’s face lit up when she saw Liz and she ran over, grabbed her hand, and dragged her towards the boy.

“Liz, this is one of my best friends and probably the biggest computer geek you will ever meet, Alex Whitman,” Maria said, turning to Alex, “and Alex, this is the girl I was talking about, Liz Campbell, my newest best friend, and her sisters Charlotte and Abby.”

“Nice to meet you Liz,” Alex said, standing up from his seat and extending his hand to her. “Any friend of Maria’s is a friend of mine. Which makes my life easier, ‘cause if you didn’t notice—Maria doesn’t make friends easily. And I’m not the biggest computer geek you will ever meet, but I’m certainly up there,” he said laughing.

“It’s nice to meet you too,” Liz said, shaking his hand.

“And you two must be Charlotte and Abby,” he said, looking over at the girls.

“Do you have games on your computer?” Charlotte asked, her eyes wide and obviously excited.

“Oh yeah, the best.”

“Do you think we could play them with you?” she asked, showing more boldness than Liz had expected of her.

“Of course. I’d love to have someone to play with besides the computer. It always beats me,” he said, putting on this fake puppy-dog face and earning a few giggles from the girls.

“We better get to work Liz,” Maria said, seeing that the girls were in good hands with Alex. “Let me show you the way we run things here at the good ole’ Crashdown Café…”


TBC…

posted on 26-Mar-2002 9:50:47 PM by Lilac Stardust
Sorry if I confused anyone by not changing the title to say chapter 13... I have corrected this.

~LS
*angel*
posted on 27-Mar-2002 1:41:21 AM by Lilac Stardust
Audio Poet~ you have got me there I fear...for how interesting would a story be with no conflict? lol.

I feel so evil to do this to everyone...but things will get complicated before the end. If you havent noticed though, I am a dreamer at heart and would have a hard time not resolving things eventually...*wink*

you will all just have to wait and see I guess. til next time... (feedback makes it easier to write *hint hint*)

~LS
*angel*
posted on 11-Apr-2002 12:36:40 AM by Lilac Stardust
Just wanted to let you guys know that I do have another chapter written and will post it as soon as my beta gives me the okay. I hope I haven't lost people from not posting in so long...the past two weeks have been utter hell for me. I promise to post within a day or two.

~LS
*angel*
posted on 13-Apr-2002 8:54:45 PM by Lilac Stardust
*Ack * Soooooo sorry that it took me this long to get a new chapter. The past two weeks have been hell for me. I applaud your patience if you are still reading this. Leave feedback pretty please....

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 14

The Crashdown turned out to be a lot like the last diner Liz had worked at, with the exception of the strange names they had for the food. Will Smith Burger? Blood of Alien Smoothie? This place is almost as strange as the customers…she thought.

The customers were the really strange part. They were tourists mostly, all asking her if she knew anything about the crash or if she had seen any aliens. They looked so disappointed when they found out she was new to town. Maria assured her that they were completely harmless, but that if she wanted to make some real money in tips, she needed to come up with her own ‘alien encounter’ story.

Liz almost couldn’t believe how well behaved the girls were, more like angels than their usual selves. They had the entire staff wrapped around their little fingers by lunchtime.

Business quickly picked up around the lunch hour. Apparently, the locals actually liked the food at the Crashdown. The girls were ushered to the break room and Liz was kept busy for a while with the customers.

“What can I get for you?” she asked automatically without looking up at her next table.

“Galaxy Sub and a Cherry Coke please,” a familiar voice said.

Liz looked up quickly. “Max, I didn’t see you come in…”

“Yeah, well you looked busy so I didn’t want to interrupt you or anything.”

Just then, the bells above the door jingled loudly and a tall blonde stepped inside. She quickly scanned the room and stopped when her eyes locked on Max.

Liz saw the girl start towards them and quickly stuffed her order pad into her apron saying, “I better put that order in for you.”

“Liz wait,” Max said, but she was already gone and didn’t hear him.

The blonde stopped in front of the table, hands on her hips. “Max,” she said, “you had better be planning on telling me the truth about where you were last night ‘cause I know that line you fed Mom and Dad about being over at Michael’s was a lie.”

“Calm down Izzy,” he said, as she slid into the seat across the booth from him.

“Calm down? Calm down? Max you didn’t come home. You’re supposed to be the responsible one in the group. What could have possibly kept you out all night?”

“I was helping a friend who just needed someone to talk to and it was late and I fell asleep on the couch. End of story.”

“Oh you are not getting off that easy…and since when do we have friends Max? I thought we weren’t supposed to get close to anyone,” she said, exasperated.

“Since yesterday and jeez Michael already gave me the third degree about this Izzy, I don’t need it from you too. It’s not like I plan on broadcasting our secret okay?”

“I can’t believe you Max. So…who is this friend?”

Liz picked that exact moment to return with Max’s food. “Galaxy Sub and a Cherry Coke. Can I get you anything else?” she asked as she set his food on the table.

“Um…yeah, could you possibly bring me some Tabasco sauce?” he asked.

“Sure, I’ll be right back,” she said, turning to leave.

“Hey Liz…”

“Yeah?” she asked, stopping and turning back towards them.

“Liz, I’d like you to meet my sister Isabel. Izzy,” he said turning to his sister, “this is Liz. She’s new to town and obviously the new waitress at the Crashdown.”

Liz was about to extend her hand to the other girl, but the look on Isabel’s face stopped her. “Nice to meet you,” she said, busying herself with her order pad. “Can I get you anything?”

“Just some water,” Isabel replied coolly.

“Okay well, I’m going to go and get that for you…and your Tabasco,” Liz said, scurrying back to the counter.

“So I see you met the Ice Queen,” Maria said, coming up behind Liz and putting a tray down on the counter.

“Who?”

“Isabel Evans. Miss Popularity. The Ice Queen. Do I need to go on?”

“She seemed…nice,” Liz said hesitantly.

“Nice? Ha. I’ve met nicer piranhas. Just watch yourself around her,” Maria said, grabbing several drinks and walking back to her tables.

Liz looked up as she again heard the bells. A tall middle-aged man with a cowboy hat and dark glasses entered the Crashdown. She noticed that he had on a leather jacket with a badge on the shoulder. The local sheriff? This could be bad…

“Uh…Maria, I have to…um…use the bathroom. I’ll be right back,” she said, making a beeline for the break room and being careful not to look directly at the sheriff.

“Okay,” Maria said, slightly wondering about Liz’s odd behavior.

Across the room Max hurriedly quieted his still ranting sister. “Hey calm down. Our favorite sheriff just made an appearance.”

They both looked down at the table, hoping to look inconspicuous, but ending up looking a little silly.

What is up with everyone today? Maria thought, as she observed the two teens. Must be something in the water…

TBC…




[ edited 1 time(s), last at 13-Apr-2002 8:57:54 PM ]
posted on 28-Apr-2002 2:01:11 AM by Lilac Stardust
I just wanted to let everyone know that I plan on posting a new part soon. unfortunately it is finals week for me and thus leaves little time for writing. however I have started a new chapter and as soon as its finished I will send it your way okay? Alrighty. Laters kids.

~LS
*angel*
posted on 19-May-2002 10:15:10 PM by Lilac Stardust
sorry this was a double post...read the next one for the chapter.

~LS
*angel*

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 19-May-2002 10:54:05 PM ]
posted on 19-May-2002 10:34:12 PM by Lilac Stardust
Life is hectic…forgive me. I have more written and hopefully things will move more quickly. Never underestimate the value of feedback to an author. Love to all of you who have stuck with this story as well as all the new readers who have given it a chance. You rock my world. LOL.

~LS
*angel*

note: ~~~ Indicates a change in perspective.

Chapter 15


The sheriff took off his glasses and approached the counter. "Good afternoon Miss DeLuca," he said, sitting down on a stool. "How's business today?"

"Same as always, Sheriff Valenti, busy. Can I get you something?” Maria asked.

"Just my usual. To go today."

"Ok, one coffee coming right up. You sure you don't want any cream or sugar in that this time?"

"I'm sure," he said, as he accepted the styrofoam cup she held out to him. He took a few dollars out of his wallet and handed them to her. "You have a nice day now, and stay safe. Some of these tourists are a little crazy this time of year."

"Alright Sheriff, I will. Have a nice day and thank you for stopping at the Crashdown," Maria said automatically, as he walked out the door.

At the sound of the bells above the door, Liz’s face appeared in the small window of the door leading to the back room. Maria sighed and walked over to the door, pushing it open and almost knocking Liz over in the process. The girls, who had been sitting at the small table in the room coloring with some crayons provided by Mr. Parker, started to giggle. Once Liz regained her balance, she shot the girls a look and they quieted down and returned to their coloring.

"Liz what are you doing? It’s the lunch rush! You better get your butt out here and help me!” Maria said impatiently.

"Sorry...I’m coming," Liz said, pulling the door open and pushing Maria out in front of her. She walked over to the counter, filled a glass with ice and water, and grabbed a bottle of Tabasco from the condiment shelf. Taking a deep breath to calm herself down, she made her way to Max’s table. "Here you go," she said as she set the items on the table.

"Thanks," Max said, looking directly at Liz and smiling. His eyes seemed to hold her there for a moment before she broke away.

"I should really get back to work now..." she said, backing away and almost running into Maria again.

"Liz, really, you need to look before you walk chica," Maria said, just barely averting disaster and keeping her tray from crashing to the floor.

"Sorry..." she squeaked, clutching her own tray to her chest.

"It's okay, really. Just try to calm down. Remind me to introduce you to some cypress oil later," Maria said, as she continued across the room to her customers.

Liz hesitated for just a second before she too made her way around to check on her other customers.

~~~

Isabel took a sip of her water and looked over at her brother. "So can I even ask who this friend is?"

Max looked confused for a second as if he had forgotten that Isabel was even there. "Oh yeah. It’s Liz," he said, as if it should have been obvious to her.

"The new waitress? Why on earth did you suddenly decide you should make friends with a new waitress at the Crashdown?" she said, almost incredulous. "You know we can’t get close to anyone Max. Especially strangers who suddenly appear in town for no reason!"

"Iz, calm down. Seriously. She does have reasons and I don’t know what possessed me to talk to her in the first place. She just looked like I feel sometimes. You know...like she was lonely and afraid... Look, I’m sorry if you feel like I put us all in danger, I already got the whole speech from Michael, but just trust me okay," Max said, pleading with his sister to understand.

She sighed and rolled her eyes. "Fine. I trust you Max. But just...be careful okay?"

"Izzy, you know me. You don’t even have to say that. I‘m always careful."

"I know I know. I just don’t want to end up in some government experiment just because you fell for some girl who turned us in."

"That’s not going to happen."

"Just make sure it doesn’t. I’m going to head home Max. I promised Mom I would help with dinner tonight."

"Tell her I’ll be home after work. Bye Iz," Max said, as he watched his sister leave.

He quickly turned his attention back to the petite brunette running around trying to fill orders in the busy diner. He hadn't lied to his sister...not exactly. He knew Liz would never turn him in, but he already was falling for her. He just wasn’t sure exactly how she felt about him. She had only known him for two days and even though he now knew her secret and had comforted her when she had been upset, it didn’t mean that she thought of him as anything but a nice guy who wanted to be her friend. He would have to be satisfied with that for now. He intended to keep the promise he had made to her the night before--he wasn’t going to let anyone hurt her--not while he was around.

For now, he was just content to sit and watch over her.

~~~

She could feel someone watching her. Their eyes following her around the room. Stop it. You're just being paranoid again, she told herself. For a moment, Liz stopped what she was doing and scanned the room. No one seemed to even be looking at her...except Max. He quickly looked away as if he had just been caught doing something he shouldn't be doing. Liz had to smile at his antics. She wasn't sure what to do about him... Sure she had just met him, but she already felt like she could trust him...completely. And he knew her secret and had said that he wanted to help her...but could he possibly even be feeling what she was? Not that I should be getting involved with anyone right now, she thought cynically.

For now, this was going to be a game of wait and see.

TBC...


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 20-May-2002 7:54:52 PM ]
posted on 23-May-2002 11:51:42 PM by Lilac Stardust
Hey! I'm back already... Aren't you all impressed? I should have another chapter out as soon as my beta gets back to me. If anyone would like to help me out, I may be able to get it out sooner. Ahead of time just let me say I know this one is short...but it is a transition. So deal. Stuff happens soon...majorly. I promise.

~LS
*angel*


Chapter 16


June 23rd. Journal entry one.

My name is Liz Mitchell and two weeks ago, my life was turned upside down.

I had been living with my abusive foster father and two other foster children who I consider my sisters. Now, however, I am living in Roswell, alien tourist trap extraordinaire, with the girls, in my own apartment. I decided yesterday, on a whim, to buy this journal. I’ve never kept one before for fear that Frank or someone else would find it and somehow use it to separate me from the girls. Now, that isn’t a worry. Even with all the changes my life has undergone lately, I feel safe for the first time I can remember. It’s hard to believe that it has only been two weeks, just fourteen days, since the girls and I arrived in Roswell that fateful night. It feels like a lifetime.

So far, there has been no sign of Frank or even that he reported us missing. I’m hopeful it will stay that way. We have settled into a routine, the girls and I. Most days, I work at the Crashdown and the girls go across the street to the Bakers’ house. I was extremely lucky to meet them. Mrs. Baker stays at home with their 6 year old daughter Emma. Charlotte and Abby seem to have found a best friend. The three of them are almost inseparable.

Speaking of friends, I seem to have made some of my own. Maria, a fellow waitress at the Crashdown, has made it her mission to be my first real friend. To her, that means dragging me all over Roswell along with her other friend Alex. Charlotte says we are just like the three musketeers—Maria is the crazy one, I am the quiet one, and Alex, well, he is the comic relief. I was reluctant to let them in at first, but I have to admit that we do have a good time. I can’t imagine life without them anymore.

Another surprise, to me and everyone else in town, is Max. Apparently, he is one of the quietest people in town. Maria said she never even heard him speak in class. But for some unknown reason, Max introduced himself to me that first day in the Crashdown and offered to help me find an apartment. We talked that evening, at his insistence, and I ended up telling him everything—about me, the girls, Frank…everything. The strange part is—I don’t know why. I just felt that I could trust him completely. That is such a new feeling for me. We haven’t spent a lot of time together since then, but he comes into the Crashdown almost daily. We talk, but he seems to be keeping himself at a distance lately, as if he is afraid to let someone get close. I understand the feeling, so I haven’t pushed him.

It seems that the storm that was my life for so long—has finally calmed…at least for now.


TBC...

posted on 26-May-2002 10:01:48 PM by Lilac Stardust
ok new chapter for you all. enjoy.... I have to find some more writing time! well before I post this I'm going to say...did anyone see this coming? haha. bet not. This has been planned (as have certain other events) since the beginning. That said, enjoy.

~LS
*angel*

oh incase you cant figure it out....italics also now indicate flashes.

Extra disclaimer!! Obviously much of this particular part is NOT my original idea. It comes from the actual show. I have taken some artistic license with it and changed it to suit my needs. Thank you in advance for not suing.

Chapter 17


Liz looked outside and sighed. It was gorgeous outside…the sun was shining and she could tell that there was just a slight breeze by the rustling of the leaves on the trees. The breeze was what made it look so inviting. In the short time that Liz had been in Roswell, she quickly found out that the weather in this part of New Mexico was different from what she was used to. The wind never seemed to pick up…leaving the June heat almost stifling—especially in the crowded restaurant.

Just then, José hit the bell on the counter between the kitchen and the dining room. "Order’s up Liz."

"Coming," she said, hurrying over to pick up the two plates he was holding. She walked over to a small table where a guy and a girl were sitting, waiting for their order. "Okay, I have got one Sigourney Weaver, that's for you. And one Will Smith. Can I get you guys anything else? Green Martian Shake? Blood of Alien smoothie??"

"No, thanks. We're good," the guy replied.

Liz noticed that both of them looked a little…off the wall. Tourists, she thought immediately. Remembering what Maria had told her when she first started working here, she came up with an idea. "So are you guys here for all the festivities? The convention over at the UFO center kicks off in a few days and the annual festival is next week."

"Yea, we’re really excited. So...does your family come from Roswell?" the girl asked.

"Oh of course. We’ve been here forever…"

"Uh, well, did any of your relatives see the crash?" the guy asked cautiously.

Liz reached into her apron and pulled out an odd looking and obviously fake photograph of an alien that Alex had given her the day before. "Well…my grandmother gave me this," she said, handing them the picture.

Maria walked past with a coffee pot, shaking her head and smiling. She stopped at a booth by the door, where two men were arguing. "Refill?" she asked, holding up the coffee pot for emphasis.

"No. Leave us alone," one of the men snarled.

Maria shrugged her shoulders and started back towards the counter. As she passed the table where Liz was still talking to the two tourists, Liz looked up, met her eyes for a second, and smiled. She returned her attention to her customers saying, "I’ll be right back. Don’t show that to anyone."

Liz and Maria walked to the cash register together and Liz started to ring up the check for the tourist couple.

"So I see you finally took my advice and found a good use for Alex’s computer genius all at the same time. Oh and by the way, Max Evans is staring at you, again if I might add," Maria said, in her usual sarcastic manner.

"Yeah, whatever, Maria. I keep telling you that’s all in your head," Liz said, shaking her head and laughing. She looked up though and across the room, Max was sitting in a booth with his sister, Isabel. He looked at her and then quickly looked away.

"See? I told you. I’d say someone has a crush on our new waitress."

"No way. I don’t know if we’re even friends really, I mean, I never see him outside of when he stops in here."

"Really Liz, do you think he was in the Crashdown this much before you came to town? Give me a break…" Maria said, walking away.

Just then, the guys near the door started arguing loudly again. "...you ask me to give you another day!!?? You're running outta time," one of the men yelled, knocking all of the dishes off the table. "I want the money today. NOT tomorrow!" he yelled, standing up.

"Liz!" Maria yelled from across the room.

The other man also stood, pulling out a gun. They struggled for a second and everyone in the restaurant dropped to the ground—except Liz who upon hearing her name had turned and looked around, confused. Suddenly, the gun went off and Liz fell to the floor. The two men immediately ran out the door.

"Liz…" Maria said, stunned.

Max looked over at Liz lying on the floor and quickly stood up to help her. Isabel grabbed onto his arm.

"What are you doing? Let go of me," Max said, trying to break free of her grasp.

"Max, what are you gonna do?" Isabel said, as Max finally shook her off.

Max looked over at Maria. "Call an ambulance," he said, before he ran over to where Liz’s still form was lying behind the counter. Maria nodded and ran into the back room to use the phone. Meanwhile, Max knelt down beside her and tore her uniform open, revealing a growing pool of blood on her stomach.

"Liz, LIZ! You have to look at me. You have to look at me," Max said, as he lifted her head slightly.

Liz weakly looked at him, and he placed his hand over the bullet wound, closing his eyes and concentrating. Almost immediately, he began to see images…flashes of Liz’s life.

Liz as a toddler with two adults who he would guess to be the Mitchells

A man who looked vaguely familiar playing with a three year old Liz

Liz waking up in the middle of the night hearing the police tell her sitter that her parents were dead

Liz at different ages being taken to different foster homes

A slightly older Liz being thrown around by a man he assumed was Frank

The arrival of Charlotte and Abby

Liz taking the girls and running away

The first time he and Liz met and the feeling of relief when he offered to help her

Liz waking up that morning after they had their ‘talk’ and seeing that he was still holding her


Max gasped for breath as he ended the connection and removed his hand, revealing perfectly smooth skin where previously there had been a bullet hole.

"You’re alright now. You’re alright," he said as Liz looked up at him, confused.

Isabel ran up to them. "Keys! Now!" she yelled, holding out her hand.

Max fished in his pocket and pulling out the keys to his jeep, tossed them to Isabel. He quickly grabbed a ketchup bottle from a nearby shelf, broke it, and poured it over Liz. "You broke a bottle when you fell, spilled ketchup on yourself. Don't say anything please," he said as he stood up and backed away. Just then, the Jeep screeched to a halt in front of the restaurant. Max ran out the door and hopped in just as Isabel put her foot on the gas and sped away.

Liz stood up, clutching her uniform to keep it together and stared at the door where Max had just exited.

TBC...


posted on 9-Jul-2002 11:40:38 PM by Lilac Stardust
Wow I really fell off the face of the earth this time didnt I? oh well...sorry 'bout that. RL is busy and I also beta and make wallpapers/graphics for others as well as my own stuff and I am starting 2 new fics. Look for them soon! Ok thats all for me...

~LS
*angel*


Ch 18

"Liz! Liz! Are you okay?" Maria said, running from the back room.

"Yeah I'm fine..." Liz said, still a little stunned.

"Are you sure? What happened? Why is your uniform unbuttoned?"

"Yeah, yeah, I'm sure. I just uh...fell and I accidentally broke the bottle of ketchup that I was holding," Liz said, trying to remember what Max had pleaded with her to say. She wasn't sure what had happened exactly, but for some reason, she did as he had asked.

"So why is your uniform unbuttoned?" Maria continued.

"Geez Maria...why are you giving me the third degree about this? Max came over to make sure I was okay and he saw the ketchup and thought that something had happened...so he unbuttoned my uniform to make sure. I promise I'm fine," Liz said, exasperated. She tried to calm herself down a little. "Look, don't tell anyone about this okay? I'm kinda embarrassed about it and I don't want Mr. Parker to know what a klutz I am."

"If you're sure you're alright..." Maria said a little warily.

Just then, Sheriff Valenti and a few other officers rushed into the café with their guns drawn. Everyone again dropped to the ground, including Liz and Maria. Liz quickly closed the snaps on the front of her uniform to avoid any more questions.

"What's going on here?" the sheriff asked.

Liz stood up, pulling Maria with her. "One of the customers shot off a gun during an argument. They both ran out, though, in all the confusion."

The sheriff lowered his gun and indicated that the others should do the same. "Anyone hurt?" he asked, as he noticed the red stain on Liz's uniform.

"No, I just accidentally broke a bottle of ketchup...that's all."

"Well we'll just take a look around and make sure. See if you can get a description of the gunman," he said to one of the deputies.

"What's going on in here?" Mr. Parker yelled, as he walked in the front door, looking rather confused.

"Apparently a couple of customers let an argument get a little out of hand and a gun went off," one of the deputies near the back said.

"What?!?! Is everyone alright? Maria? Liz? José?"

"All here and accounted for Mr. Parker," Maria said.

"Actually Mr. Parker, I have a bit of a headache from all the excitement...if it's okay with you...I'd like to just go home and lie down," Liz asked cautiously.

"Yeah I guess that would be okay. Are you sure you're alright Liz? Maybe we should take you to the hospital," he suggested.

"No. I'm fine...really. I promise. I'll be here tomorrow. Thank you so much," Liz said, as she hurried to the back room. She quickly gathered her things from her locker and left through the back door.

The drive home was short, but seemed to take an eternity. Liz just wanted to get as far away from all the police attention as quickly as possible. She didn't need them to recognize her and cause more problems.

She parked her car and ran into the apartment, hoping that the girls had not seen her return early. Dropping her bags by the door, she walked quickly into the bedroom and started to undress. As she unbuttoned her uniform, she saw that right in the middle, there was a hole...about the size of a bullet. Holding her breath, she quickly opened the rest of the buttons and gasped when saw what was underneath-there was a silver handprint on her abdomen. When the shock wore off, she hurriedly pulled her uniform the rest of the way off her body and threw it in the laundry basket, covering it with other clothes. What the hell is going on? She thought, partly frightened-partly fascinated, I have to find Max-ASAP. She reached into a dresser drawer, pulling out a pink tank top and a pair of cutoff denim shorts, and quickly put them on. Checking her appearance in the small mirror over the dresser, she made her way back to the living room.

She stepped outside and was immediately hit by the stifling mid-day heat. She took a deep breath and began to make her way across the street to pick up the girls, when for some reason, she looked down the street and was surprised to see Max's Jeep parked in front of another apartment. She remembered then that he had mentioned that Michael lived here. Unconsciously, she rubbed her hand over the spot where the silver mark lay hidden beneath her shirt as a million questions about what had happened ran through her head. Letting her curiosity get the better of her, she abruptly changed her direction and headed towards Michael's apartment.

It was only after she had knocked on the door that she started to get nervous. What am I doing? I barely know Michael and here I am standing at his front door...she thought, starting to think better of her plan and preparing to leave before anyone realized she was there. Unfortunately, the door swung open before she had the chance, revealing a surprised and slightly confused Michael.

"Liz?" he said, still looking a little shocked to see his co-worker at his door. "What are you doing here? And how did you know where I lived?"

"Um...well...Max told me you lived around here and I saw his Jeep parked outside...and...is he here? I really need to talk to him..." she said quickly, seeming to stumble over the words in her rush to get them out.

"Uh wait here a minute," he said, closing the door and leaving her standing there.

~ ~ ~

"Who was at the door?" Isabel asked, when Michael returned to the room.

"It's for Max actually," he said, turning towards Max, "Liz wants to talk to you."

Max got up from the couch and hurried to the door while Isabel was yelling, "Max, wait, stop! We haven't figured out what to tell her yet! Come back here!"

Before he opened the door, he turned and said, "Don't worry Iz. I'll handle it. It's my fault anyway...I should fix it."

"Max!" she tried again, only to have him pull the door shut behind him, cutting off any further argument. "We're doomed," she sighed, falling to the couch where he had been sitting and holding her head in her hands.

~~~

"Liz," Max said, as he stepped outside to join her, pulling the door shut behind him. "What are you doing here?"

"Can we go somewhere...um...private, to talk?"

"Uh yeah sure...where to?"

"Is my place okay?"

"That's fine with me," he said as they turned towards her apartment and walked the rest of the way in silence. Liz dug the key out of her pocket and opened the door, turning on the lights as she stepped inside to make way for Max.

"So...what did you want to talk about Liz?" Max asked, feigning ignorance, as he pulled the door closed behind them.

"How 'bout this for starters?" Liz said, pulling the bottom of her tank top up to reveal the strange silver handprint on her abdomen.

TBC...
posted on 2-Sep-2002 12:42:18 AM by Lilac Stardust
Ack sorry I have been neglecting this story. I never meant to.... Hopefully people will still read it after geez how long did I leave it...over a month or something. oh well sorry bout that. I'll try to do better.

enjoy!

~LS

~~~Ch 19~~~

Max was stunned for a moment. Sure he had known he could heal…but Liz was the first person for whom he had healed more than a scrape or a bruise. Apparently his skill left a mark, an iridescent silver mark. “Whoa…” he said, unconsciously reaching out to inspect the mark.

Liz stepped back, dropping the hem of her shirt. “Look Max. I know I don’t know you that well and all…but you seem like a pretty decent guy. I mean, you know about me and the girls and haven’t turned us in…in fact you helped us out…and I’m just so grateful for that. But we both know that I didn’t really break a bottle of ketchup today. I’m not afraid or anything…I just need to know what really happened. Alright?”

“You’re really not afraid?”

“No. Whatever you did, you saved my life. I know you wouldn’t ever do anything to hurt me.”

“Why don’t we sit down,” Max said, gesturing towards the couch. “I don’t know how to say this exactly…I’ve never told anyone before…not even my parents know the truth. Liz, I’m not exactly from around here…” he said as they both sat down.

“What do you mean? Where are you from—out of state?”

“Not exactly…more like outer space…” he said, laughing a little at the strangeness of the whole situation.

“You…you’re not an…you couldn’t be an…”

“An alien? Well we’re pretty sure that’s what we are.”

“We? Oh your sister.”

“Yeah...and Michael too.”

“What did you mean when you said you were pretty sure that’s what you were?”

“Well...we all kinda hatched from these pod-like things looking like we were six years old. Isabel and I were found wandering in the desert by the Evans who eventually adopted us. Michael ran off and was later found and put into foster care. Eventually Iz and I figured out that we had abilities that normal kids didn’t have…and we found Michael again in grade school. We don’t remember anything before that day that we came out of the pods and we’ve never found anyone else like us. Given the circumstances…we’re pretty sure we’re aliens.”

“So these abilities you have…that’s how you healed me?”

“Yeah we can all modify molecular structures and we can make these connections with people…”

"Connections? What does that mean?”

“Well when I heal someone…I think I somehow connect to them and transfer my energy to them…thus healing an injury. Sometimes I get this rush of images from the person too…”

“Did you get these images from me?”

“Yes,” he said simply, remembering some of the things he saw and feeling the anger bubble up as he remembered the way Frank had treated her. Forcing himself to calm down, he tried to continue what he had been talking about earlier. “Besides the basics though, we each have our own power…Izzy can see into dreams, Michael…well he seems to be able to send out energy bursts, and obviously I can heal. Although I’ve never tried to heal anything that serious before…”

“Max what you did today…you risked a lot of people finding out about you to try and save me. I’m just curious…I mean we haven’t even known each other that long…and I’m sure I don’t seem that trustworthy running from the law and all… What I’m trying to say is…why’d you do it? Why risk your life and the lives of your sister and friend for me?”

Because I think I might be in love with you, he silently thought, looking away for a moment. But how could he possibly tell her that? She had just been told that she had been brought back to life by an alien and he was going to tell her he loved her? Was he crazy? She didn’t need that right now.

“You know that first day that we met in the Crashdown, Michael tried to warn me that I shouldn’t get involved with you…that if you found out the truth about us you would turn us in…but I told him you weren’t like that…I just knew somehow.”

Liz sighed heavily and reached out her hand to his face, turning it back towards her. She let her hand rest on his cheek and waited for him to meet her gaze. “Max…” she said gently, “you didn’t answer my question.”

“Really?” he asked finally looking up and directly into her eyes. Max immediately felt as if he were drowning in her eyes. He realized that she could ask him anything right now and he would have no choice but to tell her the absolute truth. “What was it again?”

“Why did you risk your life for me today Max?” she repeated softly.

Just as softly he answered, “Because I’ve fallen in love with you …”

TBC…


posted on 17-Nov-2002 7:52:14 PM by Lilac Stardust
I promise there will be more soon....I have not abandonned this story... Just give me time. I soooo appreciate the FB btw.

~LS
*angel*
posted on 9-Dec-2002 10:05:58 PM by Lilac Stardust
It's finals time, so you know what that means....it means that as soon as they are over I can write my little heart out and you guys get a new chapter! soon soon soon!

~LS
posted on 12-Jan-2003 8:26:32 PM by Lilac Stardust
oh gosh guys im so sorry. I know its been forever but I was counting on using my computer at my parents' house over break and its so old that it kinda refused to work. I promise you I will have a new part for you by the end of the week.

be back soon!

~LS
posted on 22-Jan-2003 12:03:01 AM by Lilac Stardust
ok so not right on time ...but close enough! New chapter for you guys! YAY!

here goes...forgive me for grammar errors if there are any...I didnt get to proofread it.

~LS

~~~Ch 20~~~

“What? What did you say?” Liz said, disbelief evident in her voice.

“I’m in love with you. I healed you today because I couldn’t stand to lose you when I’d only just found you…”

“Max…you don’t really mean that…I mean you haven’t even known me that long…you’re just stressed from everything that happened…” she rambled, suddenly standing up and pacing.

“But I do mean it Liz. From the moment I first saw you in the Crashdown that day…somewhere deep down…I just knew it,” he said, still staring at her and waiting for her reaction.

She stopped pacing just as suddenly and felt herself get pulled into his gaze again. “But…you can’t love me…”

“Why not?”

“Because…I mean look at you. You’ve got a family, friends, a home…and these special abilities… I can just tell you are gonna do really great things some day. And then there’s me… I’m a runaway…an orphan…I basically dropped out of school…and I’m taking care of two kids who aren’t even any relation to me. You don’t want to get involved with me Max. I’m nobody,” she said softly as she turned away.

“Liz…” he said as he stood up and placed his hand on her arm, turning her towards him. “How can you even think that? I mean, the reason you dropped out of school and ran away was for the girls. You have such a big heart that you gave up your own future so that they would have a chance and to protect them. I feel lucky just to know you Liz. How could I help falling in love with you?”

“You really love me? This isn’t some joke or a way to keep me from telling people about you? You’re…serious?”

“Absolutely,” he said, as he placed his other hand on the side of her face, and leaned down to kiss her. Liz just stood there for a moment, too stunned to move. Max pulled back and tried to judge if he had overstepped his bounds… He didn’t have long though, as Liz threw her arms around his neck and kissed him, surprising him so much, that he stumbled back a step before wrapping his arms around her waist and returning her kiss. When their lips finally parted, neither one attempted to pull away, still holding onto each other as they attempted to catch their breath. “So I guess you feel the same way then…” Max said, smiling nervously.

Liz nodded, not yet trusting herself to speak. She laid her cheek on his chest and sighed, finally allowing herself to admit her feelings for Max. For so long now, she had told herself that love didn’t really exist and people who thought that it did were just fooling themselves. How could it exist…her real parents hadn’t loved her enough to keep her, none of her foster parents had ever loved her enough not to beat her, and Frank certainly hadn’t shown her love… But now…she felt how much Max loved her when he kissed her, she could see it in his eyes every time he looked at her, she could hear it in the tone of his voice. No matter how much she wanted to deny it, to keep herself safe inside her shell, she just couldn’t do it…because the way that Max felt about her, was the way she felt about him. “Max?” she said, finally finding her voice.

“Yeah Liz?”

“I think I love you too…”

“You really love me? This isn’t some joke or a way to keep me from telling people about you? You’re…serious?” he said, repeating her earlier questions with a smile on his face.

“Absolutely,” she said, smiling and leaning up to kiss him again.

Bang bang bang

The pair instantly jumped apart as if they had been hit by lightning. Neither of them moved for a second, staring at the door, afraid of who could be banging on Liz’s front door.

Bang bang bang

“Liz? Max? It's Michael…oof…and Isabel. Can we come in? We need to talk.”

They both let out a sigh at the same time, relieved that the banging had not come from either Frank or someone looking to question them about the events of the day.

To Liz though, Michael and Isabel were not much better. It wasn’t that she was afraid of their alien status…she was more afraid of what they thought of her and Max’s new-found relationship.

Max noticed her nervousness and took her hand in his as he moved to open the door. Liz held her breath as he pulled the door open and revealed his sister and best friend waiting none too patiently on her doorstep. Both of them looked as nervous as stray cats that had been backed into a corner…jumpy and skittish…not sure whether they should run or scratch. Liz knew that feeling all to well. “Hey guys, why don’t you come in.”

The pair looked stunned, but nodded and stepped inside, suddenly looking around as if they were unsure what they had come for.

Michael found his voice first. “We need to talk about what happened.”

“Michael…I told her…everything. It’s okay. She isn’t going to turn us in or anything. There’s nothing to talk about,” Max said, trying to break the news that he had just broken their childhood pact—the pact meant to keep them alive, to his sister and his friend as gently as possible.

“Yeah we figured you were going to do that,” Michael said matter-of-factly.

“We just wanted to make sure Liz understood how serious this is,” Isabel said, finally chiming in. “You do realize don’t you Liz? Our lives depend on no one finding out that we aren’t exactly human.”

“I understand Isabel. I know you don’t know me that well, but I have my own reasons for avoiding the law. I’m not going to go drawing more attention to myself just to turn you guys in. Besides, you guys seem a lot more normal than some humans I’ve met…” Liz said, laughing a little to lighten the intense mood that had come over the room. Max gave her hand a little squeeze of reassurance and smiled at her attempt.

Michael noticed the exchange and the fact that they were holding hands. “Is there something else we should know about?”

“Like what?” Max queried, clueless as to what else his best friend could possibly want to know.

“Is there something going on between you two?”

“Not that I think it’s really any of your business, but yeah, there is.”

“Max, this is so our business. We said we wouldn’t get involved with anyone…it’s not safe for us and it’s not safe for them…” Isabel said, seeming surprised that her brother had broken yet another of their promises.

“Iz…Michael…just calm down. We know the risks and Liz is involved in all of this now whether we intended for her to be or not. Us being together isn’t going to make things any worse…and it just might make our lives a little bit better. Can’t you just be happy for us like a normal best friend and sister?”

Iz and Michael sighed and stared at the floor. “Fine do whatever you want,” Michael said heading for the door, “I’m going back to my apartment…there’s a hockey game on.”

Isabel looked up at them, and shook her head. “There’s nothing I can do about it in any case I suppose,” she said sighing again. “Max, mom and dad are going to be expecting us to come home for dinner soon…”

“Yeah I know Iz. Why don’t you go hop in the Jeep. I’ll be out in a minute,” Max said, sounding tired and not wanting to fight with his sister any more.

When both Michael and Isabel left Liz’s apartment, Max turned towards her and took her other hand in his. He looked up at her face and smiled at the love he saw reflected in her eyes. It was almost impossible to believe, with everything that had transpired in the past twenty-four hours that this wasn’t all just a dream…part nightmare, part wonderful fantasy. But when she leaned up on her tiptoes and kissed him again, he was reassured that he wasn’t dreaming—that it was all real. As they parted, they continued to stare at each other. “I guess I better go before Izzy abandons me and steals my Jeep,” Max said, a smile on his lips.

“mm-hmm,” Liz mumbled as she wound her arms around his back and buried her face in his shirt.

Max returned her hug and held her for a second, savoring the moment, before he pulled back just a little and said, “I love you Liz.”

She looked up into his eyes and smiled. “I love you too Max.”

He leaned in to kiss her again. “Bye…” he said, as he finally broke the kiss and started towards the door. Opening the door, he turned and said, “I’ll call you later.” And then he was gone.

“Bye…” she said, even though he was already gone. Liz closed the door and leaned back against it sighing, still shocked at all that had happened in just one day…

TBC…


[ edited 2 time(s), last at 22-Jan-2003 12:10:07 AM ]