|posted on 16-Sep-2001 7:27:18 PM by Adian|
| Author: Adian|
Title: Heir to the Granolith
For all previous chapters:
Disclaimer: Creation of Melinda Metz, butchered by Jason Katims, and now on the UPN!!!!! Prayers sometimes are really answered Melinda Metz will be on the writing team for season 3!!!
Summary: Only through End of the World in season two happened. Selected events from the rest of the season will happen at some point. Alex went to Sweden but never came back. He decided to finish his education in Europe. Max getting Tess pregnant did happen and she had the baby (Zannor).
Max and Liz's children:
Rian= Ree an eldest male
Riona= Ree ona middle child female
Rigan= Ree gan youngest male
Serena quietly knocks on Liz's bedchamber door. "Is it safe to come in?" Receiving no answer Serena walks into the bedchamber.
Liz was in the middle of the bed head bowed; her body slumped in despair. "He didn't come." She covered her face with trembling hands and gave vent to her agony. Serena rushed over and held Liz while sobs racked her body. "He is blocking our connection. He is rejecting me."
The elevator computer sends Liz a warning that Maria is on her way. I can’t crack in front of her. I can’t tell her Max is blocking me. She’ll tell everyone and he doesn’t need the pressure and I don’t want the pity. I have to be strong no emotion. It’s time to be Queen Elizabeth not Liz. Maria enters Liz's office a few hours after talking to Max. She sits down and studies her friend waiting for her to finish. Liz has on her 'coat of regality' she is not going to give an inch. Oh well I have to try. "I found Max asleep on the couch in the family room this morning. He has asked for his own set of rooms."
Liz interrupts, "I'm not surprised. Is there a point to this conversation?"
"Liz he told Isabel and me that he doesn't understand why we rescued him. He doesn't believe we need him."
"Ria it is going to take time for him to adjust and to learn. Alaric is to talk with him today. He will get some of the answers he needs from him."
"Lizzie he needs you."
"Actually, I am the last person he wants to talk to. Maria this conversation is over I have work to do."
"But nothing Maria you've had your say and it’s duly noted. Please excuse me but I have work to do." Liz turned back to her computer and began reading.
Michael, Rian, Riona, and Rigan are the next ones to enter her office. "Liz we are going to have to move up the timetable. We've been studying the new intelligence data and we all came to the same conclusion. We need you to go to the War room so we can show you what changes we have come up with."
After studying all of the data Liz is in agreement. "Michael we are going to have to do this without Max. He isn't even close to being ready for battle."
"I know. You, Rian, and I will go to lead this battle. We can give the news to the people of King Zans escape from Khivar. We'll just say he is still recovering from escaping Khivars tender care. Riona and Rigan will be in charge here. We meet in two hours at the Granolith chamber."
"My children today we truly begin the fight to reclaim your birthright. You all know my heart and my mind in regards to this war. Rigan I leave with you the rulers signet ring. In my absence you are in charge. If anything should happen to your brother and I you are the next in line. Rigan you have faced the judgment of the Granolith and been found worthy. When you have doubts use the Granolith. Listen to the counsel of your First Advisor Riona. You can trust no one the way you can trust her for she too has faced the Granolith. The others will be here to help but the decision is ultimately yours. You are a child no longer Prince of the Realm rule wisely and justly during our absence. Always remember how much I love you. Now please go or I'll never be able to leave you."
Two hours later the trio enter the Granolith chamber. "Each of you hold one of my hands. When I give the command our hands have to touch the Granolith.” The light emitting from the Granolith changed from warm amber to bright white. "NOW!" The three figures merged in the white light and vanished into thin air.
Max left Maria lost in his own thoughts. He bumped into an old man carrying fishing poles. “Excuse me sir but can I go outside with you?”
“Sure young man nothing like a peaceful day on the lake to calm your troubles. I have a new bait to try out today. I’m going to catch ol’ crafty today.”
“Who is ol’ crafty?”
“I have been trying to catch this bass for years. I’ve nicknamed him because he is so elusive. It is new challenge every time. Come on my boat is over the hill.”
They reach the boat and load the gear. “I hope you don’t mind but we are going to have to row. I hate motors it lets the fish know we are coming.” They row out to the middle of the lake and fish in companionable silence.
“If you don’t mind my asking how did you get involved in all of this?”
“I’ve been involved from the beginning. I served on both King Zan’s council and his fathers. I was at the wedding when Khivar massacred the Royal Four. King Zan’s bride Ava betrayed him to Khivar. Ava was to be Khivars queen but he had her killed too.”
“Tell me about King Zan.”
“I watched him grow up. He was a good man. I think he would have been a great king if he had had the chance to rule. Zan was a dreamer and some of his ideas bothered the aristocracy on the other four worlds. Antar was a monarchy with some democratic institutions. The people elected what you would call a House of Representatives to advise the crown on matters concerning the populace. The other worlds were totally dominated by the aristocracy. The common people were still bound in serfdom. King Zan wanted to bring enlightened ruling to the other planets. Khivar was vehemently opposed and sought out aristocratic allies on the other planets. Princess Ava’s father was no fan of Zan’s plans either but he wouldn’t pass up the chance for his daughter to be Queen of Antar.”
“So the marriage between Ava and Zan was arranged?”
“Yes. It was hate at first sight. Both of them urged their fathers to reconsider but neither was willing. Vilandra had it no better she had been raised with Rath and considered him a brother. Both of them thought marriage close to incest.”
“Didn’t Zan’s father want him to be happy?”
“Marriages in royal and aristocratic houses are about power, money, alliances, etc. Friendship much less love is considered in arranging a match. I think Khivar found Ava so easy to turn because there was nothing between her and Zan.”
“Then why was Ava sent as part of the Royal Four if she was a traitor?”
“Her treachery was discovered after the pods had already been sent. It was too late and the Queen hoped that history wouldn’t repeat itself. Unfortunately it did. Although Tess’s duplicate Ava is as good as Tess is evil. The people of Antar hate Tess more than they hate Khivar. She can’t leave the palace grounds for fear the populace will kill her.”
“Who are you? How do you know all of this?”
“Max I’m the High Priest Alaric.”
"I've been told that you, Liz, Serena, and I came up with all of this. Why did the other version of me decide to do things this way?"
"You were kept imprisoned on Antar in the other timeline. You were allowed spiritual comfort and I was your advisor. I brought you books on the history of Antar, the Granolith, and your family. Many hours were spent discussing the forgotten information. A plan started to develop and as time went by Khivar felt more secure and you weren't watched as closely. I was able to sneak you into the Granolith chamber to test the theories we had come up with. I had my hand in many things back then. Serena was my best spy. Her father and your mother were siblings. She was basically being held hostage to insure her parent’s good behavior. Tess thought it was amusing to have her as a Lady in Waiting, a glorified title for a life of drudgery. But her position gave her access into the intimate lives of Khivar and Tess. Serena was able to access information from their private offices. One of the most important things she found was the list of whom, how, and when Khivar killed your circle of friends and their families. Oddly enough he kept to those same plans in this timeline too. Having advanced knowledge gave us time to prepare and let Khivar think they were dead."
"How much has stayed the same between the two timelines?"
"Let's say there are more similarities than differences. You, Liz, Serena, and I were able to use the time line we were stopping to make everything right in the new one. When you touched the Granolith the first time you found out about your first visit to Liz and what your life would have been. Certain events had to happen. Liz had to be out of the picture. Tess had to have your child. You had to give up the Granolith to Khivar or Earth would have been destroyed in a war. The plan we came up with was to appear to let Khivar have everything he wanted. Liz is your chosen mate. You married her in the Antarian way and with the approval of the Granolith. She quickly became pregnant. Months later when Tess mind warped you into having sex it was too late."
"Remember how I told you it was hate at first sight between you and Ava? When you were King Zan you never formally recognized her as your chosen mate. In fact you never married her in any timeline. Her child would never have claim to the Granolith or the throne. It never occurred to Tess or Khivar for you to marry her. All that was known was the Granolith had to recognize the Heir. Khivar couldn't kill you until Tess's child had been recognized as Heir by the Granolith. The years you spent imprisoned allowed your true heir Rian to grow up safely. It gave Liz, Serena, Michael, and I the time to gain an army and train one. We had time to make alliances and binding treaties for the help we would need to win Antar back. You and I mapped most of this out during your years on Antar. Once we had changed the future enough you would disappear. You made Liz Queen in her own right because you trusted the other half of your own soul. A provision was made that Rian could take the crown when he came of age but he declined. Rian knew he wasn't ready to rule he said he still had to much to learn."
"Serena and I stayed behind to guide Liz into being the Queen we all knew she would become. We had the contacts to start building the resistance. We helped her control her powers, learn to run a nation, and I think the worst of it was raising those three imps of mischief. I love those children dearly but gods they were the pests from hell as children. Anyway we planned on breaking you out when Khivar was occupied with the Naming Ceremony. At the same time all of the other Skin bases were to be destroyed. Khivar still doesn't know what's going on here. We are brining the fight to him to win back our planet and throw off the hold he has on the other worlds of our system."
“Ok I have a few questions. What is the lost knowledge? Why is the Granolith so important? Why was it entrusted to my family? What do you mean that the Granolith will judge me?”
“The lost knowledge has to do with why the Granolith chose your family as its guardian and other things the Granolith is capable of. It started when King Xander died without a direct heir. There were several Houses that were offshoots of previous rulers children. A civil war was about to break out because no one could decide who had the better claim. The High Priest suggested that the candidates be judged by the Granolith. The Heir had always been confirmed in that manner. The leaders of the Houses agreed. Rian of your House was chosen by the Granolith. In the History books he is called ‘The Founder.’ He was a great king who was able to restore peace to Antar. He created a stable monarchy and your family has held the throne ever since.”
“In the Granolith tomes there are a few stories of the firstborn son being rejected. The Granolith can see the evil within and it has killed several potential Heirs. In some cases the Granolith has totally rejected the male candidate in favor of a female. An example would be Queen Riona the Peacemaker. Wars were being raged between the five planets. It was her idea to form the Planetary Ruling Council to handle matters between the planets. It took a few years and a lot of bloodshed for the planetary rulers to realize no one was winning. She worked hard to establish the guidelines everyone could agree to and bring peace back to our system.”
“Have you noticed the trend between your children’s names and former rulers? Rigan the Just is the last one I will tell you about. He is the King who freed the serfs and gave them rights. In fact he totally reformed the law code. He revised it to be sure the common people and the aristocracy had the same rights under the law. Liz picked the names of the three most beloved rulers in our history for your children. In fact the R-I is an ancient short form of the word King.”
“As for the judgment of the Granolith no one knows. No King, Queen, or Heir has ever written about the experience. I wouldn’t try to ask Liz or Rian about it. I’ve tried and they won’t tell me a thing. And I know Liz didn’t tell Rian anything before he was confirmed. The judgment is something you have to face by yourself and the consequences.”
“When does this test take place?”
“The Granolith will call you when it is time.”
“Does it call you?”
Chuckling Alaric answers, “Yes, I am the High Priest after all. I can’t describe what it feels like to commune with the Granolith. It is beyond our notions of male/female. The Granolith just is.”
“If the Granolith is here how was Zannor able to attempt the Naming Ceremony on Antar?”
“The Granolith exists everywhere and everywhen. The concept of time is relative to it. Think about what the Granolith has let you do. You’ve used the Granolith to tamper with time.”
“Alaric, I’m even more confused about the Granolith than I was before. Why does something with so much power concern itself with mortals?”
“Max only the Granolith has an answer to that question.”
Reclaim and Restore
In the silence before dawn hundreds of people gather at select locations. An unearthly quiet descends among the warriors waiting for the battle cry. Queen Elizabeth nods to Michael indicating everyone is in place. He gives the signal to begin. A telepathic call goes forth the fight for Restoration has begun.
An astral projection of Liz stands next to Michael on the Planet Altir. It is an M class moon, which orbits around a gas giant. Altir is the only habitable celestial body in the solar system adjacent to Antar. The Skins had taken over the moon using it as a first line of defense. The resistance has been secretly sending weapons and fighters to help train the Altirians. The objective for the resistance forces and their Altirian allies is to take over the Skins military base and outlaying compound.
A two-prong attack has commenced on Altir. The target for Crown Prince Rian’s forces is the Skins compound outside the base. Michael’s troops are to infiltrate the base and take it over. The guards on the night watch are fighting boredom and sleepiness. The Skins have become complacent a fatal mistake to an occupying force.
Stealthily the first wave begins eliminating the guards surrounding the perimeter. Once the perimeter is secure Rian gives the order to begin taking over the compound’s buildings. Meanwhile Michael troops begin silently worming their way into the Skins base. Eternal silence greets the guards who never realized their last breath was upon them.
Michael’s troops are heading to the command center. Unknowingly a silent alarm was tripped alerting a breach to the interior guards. The resistance forces met with heavy fighting as they neared their objective. Michael led the charge to break through the lines. He was one of the last to fall but the command center was theirs. The remaining Skins were destroyed and Altir reclaimed.
Antarian Resistance Headquarters-Earth
An astral projection of Liz stands next to Riona. She is sitting in a chair with Liz’s hand on her forehead. Riona is relaying battle information to Isabel, Kyle, Alex, and Rigan. They are busily trying to coordinate information.
Alaric rushes into the room Max hard on his heels. “Rigan it has begun already?”
“Yes, the battle started an hour ago. Michael has taught Rian the arts of war very well. Rian’s group has overtaken the Skins outlaying settlements. Michael’s group is encountering heavy resistance. They were able to secure the perimeter before the fighting started.”
Max is white with shock at this startling news. Panicking, “We are at war? Where are Michael and Rian? And what is wrong with Liz and Riona?”
Rigan curtly explains, “Uncle Michael and Rian are on the moon Altir. Mom is in the Granolith astral projecting herself here and on Altir. We are able to relay information to Altir that way.”
An anguished mental cry blasts through their minds. Meet in the War Room.
Minutes later Maria, Ava, Mellan, Aeden, and Amergin rush through the door. “What’s going on?” Before the question could be answered Liz’s image winked out of existence. Riona’s eyes fly open, devastation filling them.
Max and Rigan rush to her side. “Riona, where is Mom? Did something happen to her?”
A desperate cry cuts into their minds. LINK!!!
Without question everyone forms a circle and joins hands. Liz appears in the middle carrying a deathly injured Michael. “Max, Rigan to me.” They carefully lay Michael on the floor. Max and Rigan begin the process of healing but he is too far-gone.
Liz commands Max and Rigan, “Stay where you are he is not going to die.” She kneels down behind his head placing her hands over Max and Rigan’s. Liz draws an incredible amount of power from the link. ”I call thee Michael. I have need of thee Michael. Come to me Michael.” As she releases the power the drained members of the link fall to the ground.
Michael’s soul has been called back. “Heal him.”
Liz smiles softly at Michael, “Be well my friend.”
“Liz, NO!” cries Michael as she disappears again.
Khivar’s nights are filled with troubled dreams of plots, poisons, and Queens. Unknowing that the tides of fate were turning.
Rigan and Max finish healing an unconscious Michael. Both are pale and shaking from the effort. Aeden and Amergin pick Michael up to bring him to sickbay. Mellan comforts her hysterical mother, Maria as they follow them out.
Bewildered Max looks upon the remaining members of the circle. “What just happened here? Michael should be dead. How did Liz do this?”
Alaric answers for the group. “When we link together Liz is able to draw upon our combined powers. We weren’t strong enough so Liz called upon the Granolith to save Michael. A price will have to be paid for bringing back his soul.”
Scared Max inquires, “What is the price? And where is Liz? Is Rian ok?”
Ominously Alaric answers, “The Granolith will decide when and how the price is to be paid.”
Seeing her fathers face Riona breaks in. “Mom and I were connected so I saw it all. Uncle Michael led the last charge. He was the first one hit but kept fighting until the enemies line broke. He wouldn’t let Mom take him out of the battle. He fell at the door to the command center. Mom had to go back to help Rian. He’s been in battles before but this is the first time he was in charge. Mom has been through this many times and can guide him as well as Uncle Michael.”
“How will they get back here?”
“Mom is still in the Granolith but she is having to project her actual body on Altir not just an image. Dad she is weak from the drain on her power but the Granolith will sustain her. As long as a part of her remains no harm can come to her.”
Serena and Max leave a sleeping Michael to Maria’s care. “Serena I have a favor to ask. I need to think some things over and it would be more comforting if I could do it in Liz’s room. I need to be able to feel her presence.”
“Of course I’ll let you in!”
“Alaric told me that we are first cousins. One day soon I would like to talk to you about our family. There is so much I don’t remember about myself, Vilandra, my parents, basically everyone.”
Tearing up Serena hugs Max, “Whenever you are ready I’m here.” Wiping away her tears she pushes Max towards Liz’s chambers.
He walks through her more formal chambers heading for her bedchamber. Hesitantly he opens the door his heart pounding at the sight before him. Liz is in a fetal position her small frame wracked with sobs. Without thought he moves to the bed and gathers her into his arms.
Voicing her terror to Max, “So many people died today. I killed today. I ordered our son to kill today. Michael should’ve died today. I saved him but no one else…all those souls gone.”
Max holds her making comforting sounds while stroking her hair. Eventually Liz cries herself to sleep in his arms. Max breathes in her comforting scent strawberries and vanilla. Watching her sleep through the night he comes to several conclusions. Hw would do whatever he had to for him to spend the rest of his life with Liz and their children.
Liz slowly awakes to find her dream a reality after 20 long years Max is in her arms and in her bed. Savoring the feeling she gazes upon her beloved’s face.
A little while later Serena reluctantly enters to wake Liz up. Liz signals to Serena so she won’t wake Max up. Gently sliding out of Max’s arms she quietly moves to Serena. She begins briefing Liz for the day.
Liz walks into her room standing over the still sleeping Max. He wakes up to her good-bye kiss. Smiling sleepily at her Liz’s heart starts fluttering. “Thank you for last night Max. When I get back from Altir my love, you and I need to talk.”
Gazing into her loving eyes, “Can I at least get a proper good-bye kiss?”
Eyes twinkling “Oh I think that can be arranged.”
After Liz leaves Serena finds Max at the breakfast table. “You knew she was in her room last night didn’t you?” Guilty Serena nods her head. “Thank you.”
Blushing Serena sits across from him to explain why. “Liz is always strong for us but refuses to let us comfort her. She doesn’t want us to see how much some decisions cost her. I knew she was in her room crying for the people who died Skins or not. She cries for her sons lost innocence for Michael almost dying. She needed someone and I was determined to get you to her. So I want to thank you for last night too. This morning when she left she was at peace and you gave that to her.”
“I love her how could I not help her when she is in pain. Serena so many things became clear to me from yesterdays events. I’ve lost my anger. Now I just want to heal and be with my family.”
“Welcome home Max.”
“Thanks Rina.” Max pauses thunderstruck. “I remembered your nickname! I was bad with my s’s as a little boy so I called you Rina.”
“You know I always hated that name and only you could get away with calling me Rina. As a child you were my hero you could do no wrong. I loved you like a brother because mine was a pest from hell!”
Realization dawns on Max. “Nicholas was your brother.”
“Our Aunt was Queen but we weren’t of royal blood. We all loved Nicholas but none of us understood him. Nicky was always jealous of you. He wanted to be you. Nicky was friends with Khivar and I honestly don’t know who originally came up with the idea to steal the throne.”
“What happened to him?”
“His best friend Khivar killed him. Nicholas after supposedly killing Michael, Isabel, and everyone else you cared about was ready to return triumphant to Antar. Khivar didn’t want a constant reminder of his dirty linen so he killed Nicholas instead.”
“I’m sorry Serena.”
“Thanks Max but don’t waste your pity on him. Well I do have work to do so I’ll leave you to your meal.”
Max watched her leave and gets up to explore Liz’s rooms. One wall filled with pictures keeps calling him back. He reaches out to touch it surprised when a handprint appears. Placing his hand over the print the wall opens into the Granolith chamber. Alaric is sitting on the divan waiting for him to come forward.
Alaric stands before Max can touch the Granolith. “The time of Judgment is at hand Max of the Blood Royal. The choice is yours leave and be an ordinary man or if you dare go forth to judgment. A heart against a feather weighs a soul. Tip the scale and your name will be a distant memory. A worthy heart shall be rewarded. Will thou be judged?”
“Come forth and let it begin.” Max lays on the divan resting one hand on the Granolith. First Max is shown his life through the various timelines. All knowledge merges and one Max stands before the Granolith for judgment.
~You have been given three chances to reclaim your heritage. What have you learned?~
“I am not the one to rule.”
~How came you to this conclusion?~
“In the first timeline I was selfish. My wants and needs were more important than my destiny, my friends, Michael, and Isabel. All I wanted was a normal life with Liz. I did not prepare myself or the others for the battle we all knew would come. Denying who I was cost me everything and everyone.”
“In the second timeline my anger at myself for failing dictated my actions. Instead of finding a real solution I chose the worst way to punish myself. I set myself up to fail damning everyone else in the process.”
“In the third timeline I consulted no one and turned myself and the Granolith over to Khivar. My foolish noble gesture still got everyone killed. The only redemption for me is the time I spent imprisoned on Antar. With Alaric’s help a plan was formulated that would save everyone I loved and regain the throne for my son. Keeping me locked up so I couldn’t screw anything up was one of the best decisions ever made.”
~What is your hearts true desire?~
“Liz. It has always been her. I want to have a life with her and my children.”
~What would you do with your life?~
“I would be my Queen’s strength.”
~Once you were a King would this truly keep you content?~
“Yes. I’ve never hated a word more than destiny. I didn’t want to be an alien on Earth. I didn’t want to be King. I didn’t want everyone looking to me for answers. Liz became my strength. She helped me make rational decisions. Without her I had no anchor and chaos ensued. Liz is a great Queen. If I have a destiny than this is what it truly is. I was made to be there for Liz in whatever capacity she needs me.”
~Is there anything else you would like to say before the verdict is made?~
~Every ruler consecrated by the Granolith gives up a part of himself and leaves it in the care of the Granolith. Your judge and jury are the past Kings and Queens of your House. Are you ready to hear their judgment?~
An older distinguished looking man appears before Max, "Hello my son." Max looks upon his father in shock. "I abstained from the vote because I could not be objective. I also wanted to meet you. It is so strange to look upon you now. You resemble your human donor so much. But your soul is pure Zan. In both incarnations your idealistic spirit shines through."
"Father," Max softly cries. "I never expected the chance to meet you. Your death was so sudden I never got the chance to tell you I love you. I was so wracked with guilt because those last months you were alive all we did was fight. Marriages for dynastic alliances I thought were archaic. Vilandra and I were so shocked at your attitude. We wanted the chance to find a love like yours and moms. Can you forgive me father?"
Max finds himself enveloped in his father’s embrace. "My son it is from you I should be seeking forgiveness. There are some things you should know."
"Your mother and I were so lucky in marriage. It was love at first sight. Our love remained strong and true throughout our lives. It is only natural you and Vilandra wished for the same type of marriage. I was so hidebound by tradition I forced you both into betrothals where you did not love. For that I am eternally sorry. The whole kingdom paid the price for my stubbornness. I brought that viper Ava into our lives."
"You never knew this but I had talked to Alaric about breaking your betrothal. I realized how much you and Ava hated each other and that a marriage between you would be a catastrophe. We had hoped to at least give you a choice of one of Ava's younger sisters. Somehow Ava found out and she poisoned me before anything could be done."
Shocked to the core Max screams, "She did what?"
"Max calm yourself. Ava or should I say Tess will pay for her crimes. In this lifetime Ava's soul was truly split. Tess is evil incarnate and Ava is wholly good. Max in Liz you have chosen well. Do whatever you must to keep her for she is your salvation. Don't let pride rule your life. Love is the only way to overcome the trials ahead. My son it is time." His image begins to fade. "Know that I love thee my son."
~Max of the Blood Royal the judgment has been made. You will be granted status as Prince of the Realm due to your blood. You will never rule. Your son Rian will inherit the crown from his mother Queen Elizabeth. If she so chooses Queen Elizabeth may marry you and grant you the title of King Consort. This is an honorary title. Will you accept judgment? ~
Head bowed Max replies, "Yes, I accept your judgment and I thank you." A feeling of peace descends over Max. For the first time in his life his destiny is clear and it is a welcome one.
I know this is a short chapter but the next few will be big ones. I am working in collaboration with Jenn on them.
I also want to Thank Everyone for the continuing incredible feedback.
Edited by - Adian on 09/23/2001 11:27:32
Edited by - Adian on 10/03/2001 11:51:40