posted on 16-Sep-2001 11:53:05 PM by SansuCry

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LINK to first 51 parts on the repost board:
Eyes of Fear Repost

Title: Eyes of Fear
Author: SansuCry
Email: sansucry⊕
Rating: PG-13, some parts R for violence and language, others NC-17 for sexual content (I will warn you).
Category: AU, M/L with other CC.
Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with Roswell or any one associated with it.
Summary: What if one of the podsters hadn’t been found as a child and had to fend for himself?
Author Note: This is my first real fic, so please be gentle. No, I don’t have poor grammar—certain parts are written that way for a reason. If you’re confused, I’ll try to answer any questions you have. Feedback is appreciated.
This is dedicated to Big Bird, my soulmate and the love of my life.

Chapter 52

‘Are your eyes closed?’


‘Are you sure?’


‘Are you going to be a good boy and keep them closed?’

‘Yes! Now get out here before I come in there and get you myself.’

‘Hmm, actually that could be pretty fun. All right. All right. I’m coming out now and I better not catch you peeking.’

Max smiled broadly as Liz’s teasing voice echoed in his mind. When they had returned from counting the receipts she had directed him into the living room and in no uncertain terms ordered him to strip naked and wrap up in the blanket they had used the previous day. Now he could feel her excitement over her surprise for him growing by leaps and bounds as she approached him, and just knowing that soon they would be spending another night in her bed endlessly loving each other was enough to stir his own desire.

‘Keep your eyes closed, Max. It’s almost time for you to open them, but there is one more thing I want you to do first.’

‘Yes Beauty,’ his subdued voice echoed.

‘Take your hands and link them behind you head.’

His brows wrinkled in confusion, so Liz quietly walked behind the couch and took his hands in hers, guiding them until they were wrapped around the nape of his neck. She planted a light kiss on his knuckles before moving away from him again. She tiptoed around the couch to stand in front of him, her lips gently grazing his as she leisurely placed her hands on his shoulders to balance herself as she straddled him. As she settled her silken-clad bottom in his lap, she could already feel him begin to harden at the contact. She moved her hands up to his and unclasped them from around his neck, bringing them to rest on her own shoulders. “You can touch me now, but you still have to keep your eyes closed,” she whispered before taking his mouth in a deep passionate kiss.

Max wasted no time as he eagerly explored her warm body, running his hands down her arms before bringing them back to her shoulders. His fingers stroked the satiny straps of her camisole, dipping lower each time until he was lightly caressing the sides of her breasts. He gracefully drew his fingers across each nipple, smiling with satisfaction as he felt the peaks harden beneath the smooth fabric. He leaned forward to tongue her aroused flesh through the soft material when he felt something brush against his cheek—something that seemed familiar. He leaned back in bewilderment before he moved his hand to the valley between her breasts, his expression a mixture of surprise and excitement as he felt the strip of lace that vertically divided the front of her top. His hands quickly moved to her hips and he couldn’t help the huge grin from appearing on his face as he felt the lace insets that ran along either side of the silk tap pants she was wearing.

“I guess you can open your eyes now since you know what your surprise is,” she teased.

Max blinked back the tears to get his first view of Liz wearing the Christmas present had had chosen for her. All he could manage to choke out was, “How?”

“Remember this morning when we decided to shower separately since we ran out of condoms?”

He nodded as he swallowed around the lump that had formed in his throat.

“While you were in the shower, Maria stopped by. She doesn’t remember doing it, but apparently she picked up the bag with my present in it when you dropped it and stuck it in with the things she had bought. She always waits to the last minute to wrap presents, so she didn’t even know she had it until yesterday morning. She wanted to give it to you, but after I told her that you thought you had lost it, I talked her into letting me have it so I could surprise you. I take it you were surprised?”

“Surprised doesn’t even begin to cover it. I honestly never thought I would get to see you wear this.”

Liz stood up from the couch and twirled around, her hair fanning out as she modeled his gift, “So how do I look in it?”

“More amazing than I could have ever imagined, my Beauty.”

Missing the warmth of his body, Liz quickly moved to settle back in his lap. “It makes me feel like your Beauty. It really is perfect, Max. Thank you so much.” She held his face in her hands as she gave him several soft, loving pecks.

“So you really do like it?” he asked with a hopeful grin.

“I love it. I’ve never seen a color quite like this before.”

“I had this picture in my head of what I wanted for you and I didn’t want to settle for anything less, so please let Maria know how much you like it. I think she was getting a little upset with me for taking so long to pick it out.”

“I’ll make sure she knows it was worth every minute she spent helping you,” Liz teased.

“And remind me to thank her for finding it. I am so glad that you actually have my gift,” he said solemnly, recalling the events that surrounded his losing possession of the present in the first place.

“Max, you know that tomorrow we should probably talk about what to do in case he does show up again,” Liz said quietly, not needing to elaborate further on who ‘he’ was.

Max closed his eyes and nodded, afraid his emotions would get the best of him if he tried to speak. Fortunately Liz continued, “But for tonight, it is still just you and me. Why don’t we go to bed so I can show you how much I appreciate my gift?”

Max let a soft smile cross his lips before he opened his eyes to take in the delicate features of the magnificent young woman who had shared so much of herself with him. He gently stroked her cheek with his fingertips, lightly caressing her velvety skin as he again silently thanked whatever force had originally drawn him to her and encouraged him to trust her. Wrapping her tightly in his arms, he stood from the couch and headed towards her bedroom, his voice happily echoing through their connection, ‘Why don’t we go to bed so I can show you how much I appreciate you?’

“Mmm, good morning, handsome,” Liz mumbled as she felt Max’s lips grazing the back of her neck. “You know, a girl could very easily get used to waking up like this every day.”

“I know I would never tire of it,” his deep voice whispered in her ear.

Liz wanted to give into the temptation to spend another whole day in bed, but she knew that they had issues to discuss before the group met later that evening, and the longer she laid there next to Max’s warm hard body, the more difficult it would be to resist his advances. “Nevertheless, my love, we have some things to do this morning before we can spend more time holed up in here. I think separate showers again would be a good idea—otherwise we aren’t going to accomplish much.”

Max sighed with disappointment, wanting to take advantage of the precious few days they had left before Liz’s parents returned yet understanding that Liz was right about needing some time to talk. “Why don’t you go first?” he suggested as he gave her one last kiss.

“Thanks. Then I can start breakfast while you’re taking your shower,” she reasoned as she climbed from the bed, turning to admire the gorgeous man occupying her bed before disappearing into the bathroom. She turned on the water and adjusted the temperature, pulling out a towel and wash cloth before stepping into the warm stream. She showered quickly, eager to get her conversation with Max over so they could hopefully spend some time on more pleasant activities later in the day. As she wiped away the condensation from the bathroom mirror, the small glimpse she caught of her body reflected there made her stop and think about how drastically her life had changed. It had just been days before her first encounter with Max in July that Pam Troy had been in the Crashdown bragging to her friends about all the dates she had already been on over the first half of summer. Refusing to let Pam get to her, Liz had bit back tears when the haughty girl had loudly insinuated that no boy would want a little mouse like Liz when they could date a tigress like Pam. Now just a little over five months later not only did Liz have someone who wanted her, he was as good as married to her, and the bond they shared was something the likes of Pam Troy couldn’t begin to fathom.

Wrapping the towel tightly around her body Liz walked back out to her bedroom just as Max was gathering clothes for after his shower, the mid-morning sun casting a golden hue over his naked form. ‘If only she could see me now,’ Liz thought, ‘I bet she’d never call me a little mouse again.’

The couple finally finished their breakfast around eleven-thirty, adding their bowls and plates to the dirty stack already in the dishwasher from the previous day. Liz finished programming the machine to automatically start just as Max nervously settled in the living room, uncertain whether he was really ready to discuss Jake without letting his anger take over.

Liz set two mugs of hot chocolate down on the end table and pulled a bottle of Tabasco sauce out of the rear pocket of her jeans before taking a seat next to Max. She tenderly held his hands between hers in an effort to calm the tension and restlessness that were surging through their connection. She spoke slowly, carefully choosing her words to cause the least amount of distress while still getting her point across. “Max, I’ve been thinking about how we can give the others an idea of what Jake looks like. I thought that maybe you could connect with each of them and give them an image of him, like you do with me.”

Max looked at Liz in horror, his deep despair over her plan quickly overwhelming his other emotions.

“You don’t like that idea?” she asked, the tone of her voice making it more a statement then a question.

“Liz, please understand,” he pleaded, looking down at their clasped hands as he tried to explain his feelings. “I am not certain how many years I have been on Earth, but it has been several at least. In all that time, you are the first and only person I have ever connected with.”

“You don’t think you’d be able to connect with the others?”

“No, I can connect with them, but knowing that you are the only person I have shared that with makes it something very special to me. It is just as significant as knowing that you are the only person I will ever make love with. I do not want to connect with anyone but you. There must be a different way to let them know what he looks like.” He gradually lifted his sorrowful eyes to meet hers, searching for the disappointment he feared he would see in her face.

Her expression only revealed love and understanding. “I didn’t mean to upset you, Max. Our connection is just as special to me so don’t think this is something I’m taking lightly. They need to know exactly what he looks like—it’s not like we can just draw a picture of him.”

“Why not?”

“Max, I’m good at science, but my Aunt Kathie is the artist in the family. I can’t even draw a decent circle.”

“Then I will draw the picture.”

“You can draw?”

“I don’t know, but I will do my best. If the drawing doesn’t look like him and we can’t think of any other way, then I will connect with the others. But at least give me a chance to try drawing first.”

“I’m all for that, Max,” Liz said as she quickly jumped off the couch and headed to her bedroom to retrieve the supplies he would need to begin the project. She set the items in his lap upon her return, shyly pointing to the box of colored pencils before she sat in the loveseat. “Those were a gift from my aunt when she was trying to encourage my artistic talent. As you can see, they’re almost brand new.”

Max sent her a sympathetic grin before turning his full attention to the task at hand, gently yet purposefully removing several of the pencils before taking the never before used drawing pad in his hands. A chill went up Liz’s spine as she watched Max transform in front of her own eyes. His full attention centered on the blank page in his lap, his smile instantly replaced with grim determination as his eyes darkened in obvious anger. She wanted to reach out to him to give him some type of support or comfort, but as soon as the thought entered her mind, his silent response told her that this was something he needed to do on his own. She thought about going into the kitchen or her bedroom to give him some privacy, but she could not manage to tear herself away from her spot directly across from him. His sudden single-mindedness slightly unnerved her, and she could almost feel the bile rising in her throat as unrestrained fury swarmed their connection. His lithe fingers worked steadily over the page, moving so fast at times that Liz swore he had to have more than two hands. Again and again he would trade pencils, first the brown tones, then the greens, occasionally filling in with reds and yellows. After a solid half-hour of rage driven creativity, Liz did not need to see the drawing to know that Max had been able to perfectly capture the image of the only person who was able to stir such hatred in the heart of the man she loved.

Dreams remain just as long as there's Dreamers--Dennis DeYoung

[ edited 51time(s), last at 15-Feb-2003 9:33:36 PM ]
posted on 6-Nov-2001 7:16:58 PM by SansuCry
Just wanted to give you an update.

Hubby is back to work, but he had to take his vacation or lose it. So we decided to take care of a little water problem in our bathroom. Well, for future reference, it's never a good sign when you can peel the tile and plaster from the walls with your bare hands because there is so much water damage. Little project is now a big project.

Meantime, I got laid off at work, so once hubby goes back to work in a week I should actually have time to write the next parts. I've been going nuts because I have these great lines and conversations going on in my head and no time to write them down!!!

SOOOO, assuming the rest of my bathroom floor and walls don't fall in, I am hoping to have the next part posted by the end of next week. Keep your fingers crossed and please say a prayer to the patron saint of home remodeling projects for me.

BTW, I am now on week 22 of my pregnancy, and I hope to find out whether it's a boy or girl on Nov. 20th. (A boy means yet ANOTHER remodeling project***Sansu says with a shudder***). I finally have some energy back despite the fact that this kid thinks I'm his/her punching bag!

Anyway, thanks for your patience. I appreciate all your feedback!

Love, Sansu
posted on 1-Feb-2002 10:14:21 PM by SansuCry
Thanks to everyone who has been e-mailing me and wondering about the story.

Due to work scheduling and a car accident my sister was in, my bathroom is still torn up but useable. Hubby is back to work and doing well.

No, I have not given up writing, and I'm seriously hoping that I can get a new part out before I have the baby on March 6th (a scheduled C-section)--a girl, Emily Lucille. Unfortunately it has been so long since I have had time to write that I have had to go back and reread my own story just so I can get myself in the proper mindset to write more.

Once again thanks for keeping me in your thoughts and keep your fingers crossed for a new part soon.

posted on 6-Feb-2002 12:35:33 AM by SansuCry
I have a horrible cold and was so congested that I couldn't sleep last night, so I stayed up and finished this chapter instead. I just had to post it tonight to celebrate THE BEST episode of the show this season. I hope you enjoy this just as much.

Feedback is greatly appreciated and may inspire me to finish another chapter before I have the baby (four weeks from tomorrow--eek!).

Chapter 53

“I know that guy,” Michael said grimly as he examined the finely-detailed sketch Max had made of Jake.

“From where?” Maria asked with worry.

“From here at the Crashdown. It was around the end of the summer. He and another guy came in here and started harrassing what’s her name--that college girl Liz’s dad hired for the summer.”

“You mean Tammy?” Liz asked.

“Yeah, that’s the one,” Michael confirmed.

“So Jake was in the restaurant?” Maria asked with trepidation.

“Not for very long. The guy reeked of booze and was saying all sorts of nasty things to Tammy, so your dad told him to leave or he would call the cops.”

“So did he leave?” Liz asked.

“Well, he exchanged a few angry words with you dad, but he did eventually leave before the cops were called,” Michael explained.

“I’m not surprised. I’m sure that someone like him has a million warrants out for his arrest. I’d leave, too,” Liz added. Her nervousness quickly crept into Max’s mind, and he instinctively wrapped his arm around her shoulder and pulled her closer to him.

“Do you think that maybe Jake came back that night and thought Liz was Tammy?” Maria questioned.

Michael thought for a second before squinting his eyes at Liz. “They don’t really look that much alike.”

“But if you were drunk enough, you might make that mistake,” Maria replied as she joined him in examining her best friend’s features.

Max spoke up for the first time since they had gathered. “I don’t think it really mattered much to Jake whether it was Liz or this Tammy girl.”

His answer visibly disturbed Maria. “So where do we go from here? We all know what this guy looks like now and obviously he is dangerous, so how do we protect ourselves?”

“Like we agreed before, I think we need to be careful, but I don’t think panicking is the thing to do. The chances are good that he won’t ever set foot in Roswell again, especially since he knows that there are people here who can identify him,” Michael assured his girlfriend, reiterating much of what they had discussed at their previous meeting.

“Michael is right. I think we just need to do the normal things we would do to be cautious. If something or someone makes you uncomfortable, then let everyone else know as soon as possible,” Max added.

Maria shrugged in defeat. She knew that the guys were right, but it didn’t make her feel any less helpless. “I guess if that’s all we can do, then that’s what I’ll do.” Realizing after several minutes of silence that there was going to be no more discussion on the subject, she finally nudged Michael under the table. He glanced at her just as she gestured towards Max with her eyes, indicating that she was giving him the chance to ask the other alien about getting together for some ‘guy time’. “Hey, Lizzie, why don’t we go get our dinners from the back. Jose has to be done making them by now,” she said quickly.

Liz turned her attention from Max, kissing the commitment symbol on his wrist through his shirt sleever before sliding out of the booth and following the other teen to the kitchen. The two young men intently watched the girls leave, but before Michael could begin to think about how to phrase his request Max said in a low, somber voice, “Michael, you have to make sure Maria is NEVER alone.”

Michael immediately understood the implications of Max’s statement. “So you think that Jake is going to come back to Roswell?”

Max looked up and out the Crashdown’s window, staring at the people strolling on the sidewalk in front of the restaurant, then checking to be sure the couple at the other table was not listening to their conversation. “He told me he would come back and find Liz again.”

“But before you said he may think she is dead. What made you change your mind all of a sudden to think that he will come back to get her?”

“I did not really change my mind. I believed him the first time he said he would find her again and hurt her and I still believe it now. If there was one thing I learned from Jake, it was that he meant every word he said.”

“So I take it you didn’t tell Liz about this threat.”

“I did not want her to know, but she found out anyway. I do not want either of the girls to have to worry about what he might do, but I thought I had better let you know that they may not be as safe as I led them to believe.”

Michael let out a nervous laugh, “So basically you bullshitted them.”

Max returned his eyes to Michael. “I did what I thought was best. If you disagree, then I will tell them…”

“NO WAY!” Michael yelped, cringing when he realized exactly how loud his response had been. Max was startled by the sudden outburst and almost jumped up from the booth.

Michel lowered his voice to continue, grabbing the nervous alien by the arm to settle him down, “You saw how freaked out Maria is already. If she knew the real chance of this guy coming back, she’d be a complete basket case. I think you did the right thing by not telling them, and as far as I’m concerned you and I are the only ones who need to know the truth.”

“Actually, I think you should let Isabelle know as well,” Max said hesitantly.

Surprise quickly flashed over Michael’s features before he comprehended Max’s reasoning. “You mean because…she…can…”

Max nodded. “She may be our best chance against him when he comes back.”

“I guess you’re right,” Michael sighed in resignation. “Still, I don’t like the idea of Isabelle having to use her powers to hurt someone…”

“It is not what I want either, but she at least needs to be prepared for the possibility.”

Michael’s eyes turned towards the kitchen door where the girls were returning with their dinners. “I’ll talk to her when I get home tonight.”

“Talk to who about what, Spaceboy?” Maria quizzed as she caught the tail end of Michael’s comment.

“Oh, Max and I were talking about us getting together with Isabelle and Alex to maybe go see a movie together or something before school starts back up,” Michael lied.

‘Max, are you all right?’ Liz’s voice echoed through their connection.

‘Yes, Beauty. I guess I’m just a little nervous about this movie thing.’

‘Max, if you don’t want to do it…’

‘No, I want to. I want to do the same things with you that they do. And with you having to go back to school soon, I want to spend as much time as possible with you.’

“Speaking of school…,” Liz said aloud as she looked at Max, “I was hoping that you guys might help me convince Max to go to school with us.”

“How can he go to school, Liz? He can’t even register.” Michael asked.

“He can now,” Liz said proudly.

“How?” Maria questioned.

Max lips curved into a shy smile. “I am now Maxwell Jonathan Stephens.”

Michael and Maria frowned at Liz, not understanding what Max meant.

“It was my Christmas present to Max. Alex was able to have his friend give Max a whole identity, complete with birth certificate and social security number. As far as Uncle Same knows, Max is a normal sixteen years old.”

“Wow, that is so…cool,” Maria smiled, knowing how excited Liz must be that Max could finally be in the same building with her for an entire school day. “So I bet you can’t wait to register for classes. Are you going to start back with us after the new year?”

Michael noticed the panicked look in Max’s eyes and realized that this was probably the first Max had heard of going to school. Remembering the numbing fear surrounding his own first days of being in a classroom, Michael quickly interceded. “Hold up, girls. This is something we have to take slowly and think through very carefully. Yeah, Max may have an identity now, but you need more than that to register for school…like records from a previous school…and parents to come with you when you register.”

Max gave Michael a grateful look before adding, “Michael’s right. The last thing we want to do is draw any unnecessary attention to us.”

Maria gave Liz a sympathetic look. “They’re right, chica. I guess we’re jumping the gun just a bit. It would be a little strange if Max showed up with no parents saying he’s never been to school before.”

Liz sighed sadly. “I didn’t even think of that. Now what do we do?”

Michael said quickly, “We’ll think of something, Liz. Maybe you can ask Alex to make up some fake school records or something.”

“Hey, you know Tess volunteers in the office during study hall. Maybe she can give us an idea about how thoroughly they check those things out.”

Liz tensed involuntarily at the mention of Tess’ name. Even though the blonde had apologized to her for flirting with Max, Liz still didn’t want to be obligated to her in any way.

Maria noticed her best friend’s apprehension. “Relax chica. I’ll do all the work on the Tess front. She’ll have no idea that I’m asking for you.”

Liz gave Maria a look of relief. “Thanks ‘ria. You’re the best.”

“Do you think we can eat before our food gets cold?” Michael asked with feigned impatience.

“Dig in, Spaceboy.”

“Umm, can we get some drinks and Tabasco sauce first?” Michael pleaded with his girlfriend.

“I’m off duty, buddy. You have two feet. Why don’t you go get it yourself?” Maria teased.

“Fine. I will.” Michael smirked. “But you still have to get up to let me out of the booth.”

“Then I might as well just do it myself.”

“I’ll help you with the drinks,” Liz said as she got up from the booth.

As the girls headed toward the kitchen for their second trip Max said quietly, “Thanks for your help with the school thing. I’m not sure I’m ready to do that just yet.”

“I remember what it was like, my friend. And I know how persistent those two can be when they get an idea into their heads, so I don’t think you’re going to get much of a repreive.”

“Thanks anyway.”

“No problem. We guys have to stick together.”

“I can’t believe today is already over, Max. Tomorrow is our last night together before my folks come back. I don’t know how I’m ever going to make it through a whole night without you next to me,” Liz said softly as she snuggled closer to her mate, caressing his warm flesh with her fingertips.

Max ran his fingers through her silky dark hair as he pressed soft kisses over her face. “I feel the same, Beauty. I will have a difficult time sleeping without you next to me. I wish you didn’t have to work tomorrow so we could spend the whole day together.”

“I’d love that too, but I’ve been shirking my restaurant responsibilities as it is and I don’t think Agnes would be too thrilled if I asked her to work another last-minute shift. We’ll just have to make tomorrow night extra special.”

“Every minute with you is special, my Elizabeth. Being with you is all that matters...”

“Unless it involves going to school with me?” Liz asked quietly.

“Liz…” he began, not really surprised that she had been able to pick up on his emotions so easily.

“Max, why didn’t you just tell me how you felt about school?”

“Until this afternoon I didn’t know how I felt about it. You know how much I want to be with you Liz. I would do anything to spend more time together, but eating with you downstairs or cleaning empty rooms is a lot different than being among a group of people for hours at a time. We know what happened when I tried that before.”

“That was different, Max. You seemed to be doing fine until Jake showed up. I really don’t think that will be a problem at school. I doubt Jake would ever end up there.”

Liz’s voice was pleading, and Max knew that she was only asking because her need to constantly be with him was as great as his own need to be near her. “It isn’t just Jake, Liz. Even I know that going shopping in a mall isn’t the same as being in a school all day.”

“It isn’t that different, Max.”

“Isn’t it? If I go to school, can you assure me that we will be in all the same classes together?”

“No, but I’m sure that Michael or Maria or Isabelle or Alex would probably be with you.”

“What about all the questions?” he asked with melancholy.

“Questions? Max, you are an incredibly fast learner. I don’t think you’ll have any problem keeping up with your school work.” Liz said confidently.

“No, I mean questions. From the other people in school. Where do you live? Who are your parents? Where did you go to school before? Teachers and the other kids are going to want to know a lot about me.”

“Well, we can tell people that you live by yourself because you don’t have any parents. I’m sure we can manage to get some kind of fake court papers showing that you can live by yourself.”

“That’s not what I mean, Liz,” Max said with slight frustration. He closed his eyes for a moment to gather his thoughts before he continued. “I am still learning how to trust people enough to want to be friends with them. I do not think I can do that if I have to constantly be deceptive about my past.”

“What about your friends at the motel? What have you told them?”

“Juanita has given me her friendship without asking for anything in return. I haven’t had to tell her anything I do not want her to know. And DJ and Campbell are too young to question my past—they just wanted someone to play with them. Ginny was just so greatful to have someone to talk to that she didn’t take the time to ask me many questions.”

“Max, even you have to realize that you can’t spend the rest of your life choosing friends based on how little they want to know about your past.”

“Of course, I know that. But remember Liz, I have all your memories in here,” Max said as he tapped his head. “I know how what school is really like and how much of it is….social. Just give me some more time to practice making friends on my own terms. I’m not saying that I will never want to go to school. I just don’t think I can start next week.”

Liz couldn’t hide her disappointment, yet she had to agree with Max. She reminded herself that she had told him she would never push him to do something he didn’t feel he was ready for, and she wasn’t about to start now. However, she refused to admit utter defeat just yet. Nodding her head against his bare chest, she said, “All right, no starting school next week. But will you do something else for me?”

Max could tell by the tone of her voice that she wanted a compromise from him. He warily asked, “What kind of something else?”

Liz could feel his apprehension. She placed a tender kiss on the hand that was holding hers. “Relax, it isn’t anything major. I promise.”

Max gave a slight nod for her to continue.

“As nice as your friends are at the motel, most of them are not the kind of people you would be spending time with if you were to go to school. I think that the first step towards getting you to go to school is to make you more comfortable around people our age.”

“All right…” Max said, not certain where Liz was going with this.

“Michael’s New Year’s party is in four days, and a lot of kids from school will be there. I want you to promise me that you will try to get to know some of them.”

“Some of them? How many is some of them?”

“You want me to give you a number?”

Max gave a vigorous nod.

“Ok, how about ten?” she suggested.

“TEN?” he asked in surprise.

“There’s going to be lots of kids there, Max. Ten isn’t that many.”

“Liz, I don’t think I have talked to ten people in my whole life. And you want me to talk to ten people in one night?”

“If you don’t want ten, then how many do you want?”


“Two is a drop in the bucket. At that rate you’ll be an old man and still not be in school. Eight.”









The couple continued their lighthearted debate in the silence of their minds, deep amber eyes casting an unbreakable spell over the dark-haired girl as the voice whispering in her mind became more passionate with each incantation. Almost too late, she realized Max’s scheme.

“So you really think you can make me change my mind just by seducing me?” she asked in a mocking voice as she propped herself up on her elbow, narrowly escaping Max’s move to pull her on top of him.

“Your words injure me, my Beauty,” Max said as he withdrew his hand from hers to clasp it over his heart. “I would think of doing no such thing.” He couldn’t stop the half-smile from crossing his face as he realized Liz had caught onto his plan. Trying to save face, he continued, “I merely wanted to end the discussion so that I could spend the rest of this evening making love to my mate.”

“Well, if you really want to end the discussion, all you have to do is agree with six,” Liz said matter-of-factly, trying to not let herself be distracted by the naked body moving over her.

He took her hand back in his and began placing soothing kisses up her arm, slowly working his way to her bare shoulder and up the side of her throat. “I’ll agree to anything, my love, as long as you don’t make me wait another minute to taste your sweet lips,” his voice rasped in her ear.

Suddenly it didn’t matter to Liz whether Max befriended a million people at the party or they spent New Year’s Eve holed up together in Michael’s bedroom. Max’s desire rushed through their connection and into her very soul until all she wanted was to feel his mouth on hers as his body possessed her own. ‘How do you do this to me?’ she asked in her mind. ‘How do you make me forget about everything but you?’

‘I’m not doing anything to you, my Beauty,’ he whispered back to her. ‘You are only feeling how I feel any time I am near you.’

Liz lay back on the bed, threading her free hand through the dark locks at the nape of his neck to guide him down with her. As he grazed her soft lips with his own, her loving voice echoed in his mind, ‘It’s getting harder for me to figure out which thoughts are yours and which are mine.’

‘Maybe our minds are truly becoming one,’ Max replied in his own affectionate tone, his movements stilling just enough to emphasize the seriousness of the comment. ‘Does the idea of that bother you?’

‘I wouldn’t say it bothers me. It just amazes me to think that we could get any closer than we already are. How are we ever going to stand being apart?’ she silently asked.

‘I will have no more talk of being apart tonight, my Beauty. Let’s spend what time we do have left together seeing exactly how much closer we can become.’

“You must have been up pretty late last night,” Maria commented to her best friend as they prepared to begin their shift.

“Why do you say that?” Liz asked as she pulled her hair back in a ponytail.

“Well I’m not sure who has darker circles under their eyes—you or Prince Charming over there in the booth,” Maria teased as she gestured towards Max, who was nursing a Tabasco-laden cup of coffee.

“We were up pretty late talking about the school thing,” Liz countered as she gave Jose the order for Max’s breakfast.

“Uh-huh,” Maria muttered, unconvinced. “What was there to talk about? I thought the school plans were on hold for now.”

“They are. Actually we were discussing how to get him used to being around other kids our age. I thought Michael and Isabelle’s party would be a good time for Max to practice socializing.”

“What did Max think?”

“Well, after a while he agreed to try to make some new friends.”

“How many is some? Two? Ten? Twenty?”

Liz rolled her eyes as she remembered Max asking her almost the same question. “I had wanted him to try to meet ten new people, but we settled on four.”

“If you started out at ten, how did he ever talk you down to four?” Maria asked, knowing how stubborn the petite dark-haired girl could be.

“Believe me, you don’t want to know,” Liz muttered as she walked towards her first paying customer of the day.

“I didn’t know you were meeting Max here,” Maria asked her boyfriend as he entered the Crashdown just after the lunch rush.

“Neither did I,” Michael said with a frown. “I just came to see you.”

“Wait. Didn’t you guys make plans for today?” she questioned.

“Uh, we never really got around to it,” Michael confessed.

“Ok, well it’s obvious you are not capable of setting up this male bonding thing on your own. Follow me, Loverboy,” she said sarcastically. Michael tagged along behind her like a scolded child, sliding into the booth across from Max before she could think of giving him the obligatory hand slapping.

“Hey, guy, what’s up?” Michael asked the quiet alien.

Before Max could reply, Maria interrupted. “Max, have you ever played basketball?”

“Basketball?” Max asked, wondering why he was being asked the question. “No. I have never played basketball.”

“Do you want to learn how?”

Max used a napkin to mark the spot in his book before closing it and turning his complete attention to the couple in front of him. “I guess.”

“Good. See, Michael here is bored and if he stays here at the restaurant and moons over me as much as you’ve been mooning over Liz all morning, NONE of the customers are going to get the right order. So please do me a favor and get him out of here so that Liz and I can do our jobs.”

Michael and Max exchanged a look that said neither one of them wanted to leave the restaurant. Michael spoke first, “Can’t a guy at least get some lunch before you kick him out?”

Maria was tempted to tell her boyfriend no, but even she couldn’t be cruel enough to deny someone food for the sake of male bonding. “I’ll get you guys some lunch to go, ok? Why don’t you two take Max’s microwave to his motel room on the way to your house for the basketball lesson?”

Looking for another out, Michael asked Max, “Are you all right with that? I know Liz said you were a little freaked about the car after that run in with Jake at the mall.”

“I’m not sure…” Max began.

“Well, why don’t you guys just walk to the motel and play ball there. They’ve got a big parking lot, don’t they? Michael always has a basketball with him in the jeep, don’t you Michael?”

“Yeah, but…”

Maria heavily placed a hand on each of the boys’ shoulders as she spoke through clenched teeth. “You two are still under the impression that you have a choice in this matter. Let’s get something straight. I am going to give you some lunch to take out of here so you my go explore the great outdoors together. You two are going to drag your butts out of this booth and not show your faces back here until Liz’s and my shift is over, which is in three and a half more hours. Do we understand each other?”


“I SAID ‘Do we understand each other?’”

The two boys let out almost simultaneous sighs of defeat before nodding their reluctant agreement.

“Hey, Michael,” Liz greeted cheerfully. Noticing the slight tension in the air, she added, “Is everything all right?”

“Everything’s just great, Lizzie. Our two boyfriends here were just telling me their plans for the afternoon. Seems that they’re gonna go eat at Max’s and shoot some hoops together. Doesn’t that sound like fun?” Maria rambled as she scribbled on her order pad. Before Liz could ask any questions, she tore off the top page and handed it to the surprised girl. “Would you please be a sweetie and place this order for Michal with whatever Max wants?”

“Sure,” Liz answered slowly as she turned to look at Max. “What do you want for lunch, Max?”

‘You,’ his voice softly spoke in her mind.

‘Behave yourself or you’ll never make it out of here,’ she teased back.

‘And that would be a bad thing?’ he silently asked as he raised his eyebrow.

‘For the rest of my customers it would be.’

Noticing the two lovers were once again becoming oblivious to the outside world for the hundredth time that day, Maria loudly cleared her throat before stepping into their line of sight. Addressing Max with a glare that dared him to disobey, she said is a sugar sweet voice, “Why don’t you two stop with this whole ‘look-into-my-eyes-soulmate-thing’ and just tell the girl what you want for lunch. After all we wouldn’t want to hold up your plans any longer than necessary, now would we?”

Stumbling to speak through the sudden knot in his throat, Max finally choked out, “Anything is fine, Liz. You know what I like.”

Maria turned to look over her shoulder to where the other waitress stood behind her. “You heard the boy, Lizzie. Now please be a good girl and get those orders placed so our sweeties here can be on their way,” she said as she winked at the confused brunette. As soon as Liz was out of earshot, Maria turned back to the table. “See how easy that was? I’m sure that when I look over here in ten minutes, you two won’t be here, right?”

The two nodded vigorously while avoiding direct eye contact with the pixie-haired girl. She gave herself a smug pat on the back before moving to care for one of her other customers. Just as the two boys began to relax, she called out to them.

“By the way, guys, have fun.”

“What is this lady’s name again? And why are we going to see her?” Michael asked as he and the other alien approached the motel room a few doors down from Max’s current residence.

“Her name is Ginny and she lives alone. I just want to check on her to be sure she is all right,” Max patiently explained.

Michael rolled his eyes behind Max’s back, wondering how he got suckered into visiting an old lady instead of teaching the other teen how to shoot hoops. At least he had gotten to eat his lunch first. Maria was really gonna pay for this.

Max knocked on the door before turning the handle, certain that it was in its customary position of being unlocked. “Ginny?”

“Patrick, is that you?”

“No, Ginny. It’s Max.”

“Well, hello there. Come in my young gentleman. I was wondering whether you would return.”

“I haven’t been around lately. I have been staying with a friend, but I’ll be back starting tomorrow.”

“Well, I’m glad to hear that, Max. Nothing against Miss Juanita, mind you, but you’re a little more interesting to talk with.”

“I think you are very interesting myself, Ginny, so I thank you for the compliment. I hope you don’t mind, but I brought my friend Michael along,” Max said as he moved closer to the woman to allow Michael to enter the room.

As he slid behind his friend, Michael wrinkled his nose at the strong medicinal scent in the room. He gave the woman in the rocking chair a quiet hello.

“It’s nice to meet you, Michael,” the elderly woman replied. Turning her head towards the form standing next to her, she queried, “How was your Christmas, Max? Did you get all the presents you wanted?”

“I was able to spend Christmas with Liz, so I enjoyed myself a lot. Did you have to spend Christmas by yourself?” he asked with concern.

“No, no dear. That young lady from upstairs, oh what is her name….Kelly. She and her two little boys brought me a nice dinner and some cookies. They even drew some pictures for me. I think they are over on my nightstand if you want to look at them. My eyes aren’t the best anymore, so I’m not quite sure what they are drawings of. Maybe you can describe them for me.”

Max grew sad at the mention of his two small friends. He really missed them and wanted to go see them as well, but he knew that for now he was better off avoiding them. He was making his way to the nightstand to view their artwork when Michael whispered to him, “How long are we going to stay?”

Max noticed the impatient look on the other boy’s face. “Not much longer. Just give me five more minutes, all right?”

Michael nodded and moved to the other side of the room, examining the old black and white photos covering the wall. Max grabbed the boys’ drawings and brought them close to the white-haired woman, kneeling next to her so he could describe the two pictures to her. “D.J. drew this one on the red paper. It looks like a tree with lots of decorations hanging on it. On the top is a girl in a white dress and it looks like she has a pair of wings.”

“That’s an angel,” Michael muttered under his breath.

“An angel,” Max spoke louder so Ginny could hear. “She’s an angel. There are lots of presents under the tree. Campbell drew this other picture. I’m not sure what it is supposed to be. It looks like a man with white hair. He is dressed in red and is carrying a big red bag.”

“Is it a picture of Santa Claus?” Ginny asked.

Max turned helplessly to look at Michael, who was briskly shaking his head yes as he tried to not laugh out loud at the silliness of the whole situation.

“Yes, Santa Claus,” Max sighed in relief as he tried to think of an excuse. “I forgot his name for a minute.”

Ginny patted his hand as she said, “Don’t worry, dear, that happens to me, too…more often than I like to admit.”

Max smiled as he stood up and took the pictures back to Ginny’s nightstand. Setting them down, he turned to gesture to Michael that he was ready to leave. The other boy’s attention was completely focused on the photo wall, and Max had to do a double take when he noticed Michael’s jaw wide open in shock. He poked his friend in the arm and whispered, “Michael, what’s wrong?”

Michael turned to look at Max with a bewildered look in his eyes as he pointed to a figure in one of the photos. “Max,” he said in a low, chilling tone, “that’s me."

posted on 25-Feb-2002 3:44:39 AM by SansuCry
NINE DAYS until baby!!! (Sansu chants "I've done this before--I won't freak out. I've done this before--I won't freak out!")

IF I'm lucky, I'll be able to post one more new part before then. For now here is Chapter 54, and yes, for all you who have been waiting for a little more Max and Liz loving, it is NC-17--or at least a hard R.

Chapter 54

Liz had felt a constant wave of nervousness coming from Max for the past fifteen minutes, so she was not surprised when he and Michael came storming through the back door of the Crashdown.

“Hey, I thought I told you two to not come back until…” Maria started, but as soon as she saw the expression on Michael’s face, she knew something was wrong. Taking his hand and drawing him to the couch, she asked, “What happened? You look like you just saw a ghost.”

The two boys exchanged glances as Max pulled Liz closer to him and quietly replied, “He sort of did see a ghost.”

Liz instantly tensed in Max’s arms as she whispered in a trembling voice, “Was it Jake?”

Michael shook his head emphatically as he ran his hand through his hair. “No, no, nothing like that. I didn’t mean to scare you.”

“Then what is it?” Maria asked with frustration.

“We went to go check up on Ginny to make sure she was all right. While we were there, Michael was looking at the black and white pictures she had on the wall of her room. Two of the pictures included what we think must be Michael’s human donor,” Max explained in a hushed voice as he gently massaged Liz’s shoulder, his warm touch soothing her frayed nerves at the thought of Jake.

“What am I missing here?” Maria asked with confusion. “Who is Ginny and why didn’t she recognize Michael if she has pictures of him?”

“Ginny is an old la…uh, elderly woman who lives over at the Regent. She probably didn’t recognize me because her eyesight isn’t the greatest. Once Max and I spotted the photos, we didn’t stick around to find out exactly how much she could see of me,” Michael said with a sigh.

Maria rubbed the back of Michael’s hand with her thumb as she attempted to gauge his feelings towards this discovery. Studying his face for any sign of what he might do with this new information, she was relieved when she heard Liz voice the question she was afraid to ask.

“Are you happy that you saw those photos? Maybe you can find out more about your donor.”

“I don’t know…it really hasn’t had time to sink in, you know. I guess I should be happy, but all I can think is that it just feels…weird.”

“Is this Ginny somehow related to the guy in the picture?” Maria asked as she finally found her voice.

“I guess she was, but like I said, we didn’t think it was too smart to stick around to find out.”

“Maybe Max can talk to her and find out more about him,” Liz volunteered, sensing that her boyfriend was about to suggest doing so anyway.

Michael glanced up at Max, a mixture of hope and confusion in his expression. “Everything I know about my alien family I have learned from you. It’s too bizarre to think that you’ll be able to do the same for the human part of me.”

“I know how surprised I was to see your picture up there, Michael, so I can’t even guess what a shock it was to you. Why don’t you take some time to think about it before deciding what you want to do? I see Ginny twice a week, so if you decide you want to know more, just tell me,” Max directed.

“Thanks, man. I appreciate it,” Michael nodded.

Through the pick-up window, Liz spied one of her customers growing impatient. Squeezing Max’s hand as she guided him toward the door to the restaurant, she suggested, “Since you guys are here, why don’t Maria and I get you a couple of Alien Blasts to nurse until we’re done with our shift? It’s only another hour.”

“That sounds like a great idea,” Maria chimed in as she stood up from the couch, reversing her earlier order for the two teens to stay away in favor of keeping any eye on her boyfriend to determine his state of mind over his unexpected finding.

The four quietly made their way back into the restaurant, the girls quickly returning to their work while the boys settled into one of the empty booths, all of them hoping for the next hour to pass quickly.

“I’m surprised Michael didn’t jump at the chance to know more about his human donor,” Liz commented as she and Max snuggled in the living room later that evening. “He seemed pretty excited about the stuff in the book translation.”

Max stroked her hair as he planted light kisses on her temple. “That’s just it, Liz. After years of not knowing anything about who he was or where he came from, he suddenly has all the answers right in front of him. I think it is just a lot to deal with all at one time. I’m sure once he has gotten used to the idea, he will want more information from Ginny.”

She turned to study his face in the darkened room, the golden flecks in his eyes dancing in rhythm with the flickering candlelight as he reverently gazed at her. Softly she said, “Maria seemed pretty worried.”

“She just needs to give him some time,” Max remarked as he continued to absently play with her hair. “I’m sure he’ll be all right.”

“I think she’s afraid he’ll be too all right. She seems to think he may not want to be with her if he knows all about his family.”

“Did she really say that?”

“Not in so may words, but I could tell by the comments she was making that was what she is afraid of.”

He gave a light laugh as he shook his head in disbelief.


“I think one of the reasons Michael is hesitant about finding out more information from Ginny is because he’s afraid of how Maria will react. He’s afraid it will scare her away.”

“Why would it scare her away? She already knows he’s an alien.”

“He thinks knowing all the facts will make it more real for her somehow. How did he put it? ‘She freaked out when she found out I was an alien. What will she do once she knows all the gory details?’.”

“It sounds like those two need to have a serious talk before all this worrying gets out of hand,” Liz commented as she leaned her head into Max’s chest, his wool sweater teasing her cheek as she breathed in his warm, familiar scent.

‘I guess we should be glad we share such a deep connection,’ his voice echoed in her mind. ‘That way we can’t hide our feelings from each other.’

She pulled away from his chest to look into his eyes again, her face set with a grim expression. ‘No, but you can hide other things from me, can’t you?’

He pulled away from her with a look of confusion. Slowly he asked, “What ‘other things’ do you think I am hiding?”

“You know what I’m talking about,” she said seriously. Then, smiling up at him, she continued in a cheery tone, “You know…the story of what happened when Maria found out Michael and Isabelle were aliens?”

Max let out the breath he hadn’t realized he’d been holding and closed his eyes briefly before allowing his face to break out in a grin. “I’m not hiding the story from you, my Beauty. I’m just not going to tell it to you.”

“Why not?” she moaned.

“You know why. I promised Maria that I wouldn’t, and I plan to keep my word.”

“That’s not fair! What about me? Isn’t there ANYTHING I can do to get you to tell me? Even just a little bit of the story?”

A devilish smile came over his face. He stood up from the couch and offered her his hand. “Well, tonight is our last night together, isn’t it?”

Hesitantly she took his hand and stood up next to him. “Yes, it is,” she said, hoping this meant he might change his mind.

Quickly he bent over and scooped her up in his arms, blowing out the candles before carrying her toward the soft light coming from her bedroom. ‘Then perhaps you can find some way to persuade me to talk,’ his voice whispered.

As he adoringly laid her on the bed, she rolled her eyes at him and said aloud, “Look what that got me last night. I was so persuasive that you talked me down to FOUR people!”

He slinked onto the soft comforter like a cat stalking its prey, his mesmerizing eyes keeping her in a trance as he ascended over her. He grasped her by the thighs and wrapped her legs around him, pressing his arousal into her core as he rested his arms along her sides, completely pinning her underneath him. As his tender mouth began working its magic on her sensitive flesh, he whispered, ‘My beloved Elizabeth, I do not recall hearing much complaining from you last night regarding our compromise. I must admit, though, that you were very close to convincing me that six people were not too many to befriend.’

Liz closed her eyes to concentrate on the path his ardent lips were burning down the length of her overheated body as she reveled in the love and passion filling their connection. Her mind struggled to convey her disjointed thoughts, ‘It doesn’t matter how close I came to winning. The point is I still lost…well, I lost the argument, anyway.’

She felt him smile against the bare skin above the waist of her jeans before he brought his eyes up to meet hers, now half-lidded with desire for him. “Maybe you will have better luck tonight, my mate,” his deep, lust-filled voice echoed in the quiet room. He returned to worshipping her body with his mouth. ‘All the energy I used last night to win that compromise has left me in a weakened state, but I know you would not take advantage of my vulnerability,’ he teased.

She propped herself up on her elbows as he unbuttoned her jeans and slid the zipper down. ‘You don’t look very weak to me.’

‘Oh, but I am,’ he whispered in her mind. ‘It’s taking every ounce of my strength just to undress you, my love.’

She stilled his hands as he began to pull her jeans down her hips. ‘As you said, I don’t want to take advantage of you in such a fragile condition. Let’s forget about making love tonight and just get a good night’s sleep, all right?’

He feigned a hurt expression as he sat up on his knees. ‘You would deny me the pleasure of your body on this, our last night together?’

She sat up and moved to the edge of the bed, looking back at him seductively. “What would you have me do? I don’t want to be responsible for adding to your exhaustion, my beloved.”

Spying the vacated bed, he quickly flopped down on his back and folded his arms behind his head. A Cheshire-cat grin came over his face as his desire-laden voice laid out his plan. “Perhaps you could relieve me of some of the physical burden…”

“Relieve you?”

“Yes, my love.”

“And how, exactly, would I do that?”

“Well, you could start by removing those jeans of yours that I was having such a difficult time with.”

She stood up from the bed and turned to face him. “These little old things?” she asked as she deftly slid the denim fabric down her legs, stepping out of the pants as they pooled on the floor. “What now my mate?”

“Now the sweater has to go.”

She pulled the deep purple top over her head, the commitment symbol on her hip peeking over the edge of her silken panties as she stretched her arms to the ceiling to rid herself of the garment. Her face flushed when she felt a wave of pure desire wash over her as his adoring words echoed in her mind, ‘So beautiful, my mate, my lover.’

Their eyes met and the intense emotions reflected in both their faces made it obvious that their playful bantering would soon be put aside to fulfill a more urgent need. No longer waiting for instructions, Liz walked over to the bed and straddled Max’s hips. Reaching her arms out to his, she silently directed him to sit up. She made quick work of removing his sweater, the couple moaning in unison as her supple breasts made contact with his warm, firm chest. His strong arms supported her as he leaned her back just enough to take one of her firm nipples in his mouth, gently teasing it with his tongue. She threaded her hands through the hair at the nape of his neck, willing him to continue his loving assault indefinitely as she instinctively began to move her hips in a slow rhythm across the stiffened material of his jeans. After countless minutes, his desperate voice broke through the erotic haze that had enveloped them. “Please my Beauty, I must be inside of you.”

He lay back as she worked her way down his legs, swiftly removing the rest of the clothing that stood in the way of their imminent joining. Depositing them on the floor, she added her own panties to the pile before retrieving a condom from the nightstand. She knelt between his knees as she lovingly caressed his erection, leaning over to taste him for just a second before placing the latex material over his hardened flesh. Moving her way back up to his hips, a small whimper of pleasure escaped her lips as she gradually slid down his length. Mutual desire flowed through their connection as she relished the feeling of Max being buried so deep inside of her. She wanted to stay that way forever, but soon the desperate need for the sensual friction that would bring them to climax overwhelmed her, both Max and her own body guiding her to begin their lovers’ dance.

His left hand automatically moved to caress the commitment symbol on her hip as she brought his right hand up to kiss the symbol on his wrist, cradling her face in his palm. It didn’t take long for the familiar crest of uncensored passion to flow through their connection as eyes met and mouths spoke adoring words of undying love. Liz collapsed onto Max’s chest as their satiated bodies quickly craved rest, their matched breathing a testament to depth of their connection.

Two more condoms and several hours later, the sun found the couple in this same position as it beckoned the start of a new day.

posted on 15-Mar-2002 1:59:11 PM by SansuCry

My little Emily Lucille was born at 8:08 a.m. on March 6th. She weighed 8 lbs, 15 oz. and was 20" long and has lots of black hair!!

Everything turned out great--no problems with the c-section, and we were able to come home last Friday evening. She is a sweetheart and doesn't fuss unless she is hungry.

Tobasco Liz, how did things go with you? I hope you are home with your new one by now.

As for when the next part of the story will be out, it should be within the next week. Most of it is written--I just have to proofread it and finish up the last few paragraphs.

posted on 27-Apr-2002 4:06:48 PM by SansuCry
I know it's been a long time, but here's the next part. Hope you like it.

Chapter 55

The gray skies outside his motel room mirrored his mood as he removed his clothes from the duffel bag and placed them back in the drawers of the long dresser. Although he had grown accustomed to his current home and was quite fond of the friends he had already made, he didn’t want to be here.

Carefully unwrapping his flannel shirt from around the present she had given him, he stood the double picture frame up on his nightstand, turning it so that it would be the first and last thing he saw each day. Time could be such a strange thing. It seemed like days ago that he had said good-bye to Liz, not the mere hour it had actually been since they had parted. Yet the week they had spent together, becoming committed mates and lovers, had passed in the blink of an eye.

‘It went too fast for me, too.’

He couldn’t help but smile as her voice echoed in his mind, the newfound depth of their connection since their physical joining still amazing him. ‘I miss you already, my Beauty. I cannot wait to have you in my arms again.’

‘I don’t know how I’m going to survive, Max. I have all this nervous energy inside of me…I feel like I’m going to go insane if I don’t…’ she trailed off.

‘Don’t what?’ he asked, telling she was embarrassed by what she was about to say.

‘If I don’t make love to you soon. I know it’s only been a few hours, but I can’t explain it. I want to crawl out of my skin.’ She admitted quietly.

‘You are not alone, my love. I am having the same reaction,’ he assured her.

‘It’s like I’m an addict going through withdrawal or something,’ she continued.

‘An addict?’

‘An addict…someone who can’t get enough of something…damn.’

‘What’s wrong?’

‘My parents are here. I’m not sure how this connection thing between us works, but PLEASE don’t tell me anything too sexy or funny while I’m talking to them.’

‘I promise I won’t say a word. Let me know when you are free to talk to me again, my love.’

‘I love you, Max.’

Suddenly an image of a warm summer night sprang into Liz’s mind. Hundreds of stars dotted the sky as she breathed in the tranquil desert air. A pair of muscled arms pulled her back against a bare chest as soft lips grazed the nape of her neck, her whole body instantly set ablaze with need and desire.


‘What? I didn’t say anything to you, did I?’

‘That’s not fair and you know it.’

‘I’m sorry, Beauty. I couldn’t resist the temptation. You have my word that I will be good now.’

‘I didn’t say you weren’t good, Max, but I still need you to behave…’

‘Behaving from here on out. I promise.’

After Max was sure he no longer had Liz’s attention, he turned his own thoughts to the description Liz had given of an addict. It seemed like an appropriate word for how he felt about her. Since the first night he had caressed her beautifully naked body in the shower, his whole being had yearned for her. He had assumed that once they had mated, his desire for her would be more manageable. However, the complete opposite had happened and his need to possess her body and soul only increased each time he made love to her. How was he ever going to make it through a whole day without feeling her warmth surround him?

A quiet knock on his door brought him out of his thoughts. He looked out the curtained window to determine who his visitor was, surprised to see Juanita standing with Campbell and D.J.’s mother. He slowly made his way to the door, silently hoping they would be gone by the time he opened it. He nervously turned the handle, flinching as the cool December air filled the room.

“I was pretty sure you’d be back today,” Juanita said with a tentative smile. “Do you mind if we come in?”

He though for a moment before nodding silently, opening the door wide enough for the guests to walk past him and into the room. The boys’ mother gave the room a quick glance as they waited for Max to shut the door, the two women obviously intending to stay for more than just a few minutes.

“Would you like to sit down?” he asked as he pointed to the two chairs at the table, part of him afraid that the younger woman would turn into the screaming lunatic she had been during his last encounter with her.

“Thanks, Max,” Juanita said solemnly.

“Yes, thank you,” the mother replied quietly as she moved to the small dining set in front of the window.

Max sat down on the edge of the bed and focused on the table, keeping far enough away that he could escape if necessary. “I thought Wednesday was your day off?” he questioned his friend in an attempt to diffuse some of the tension in the room.

“It is. This isn’t work-related, Max. It’s more of a social visit…or a favor. Kelly here has something she’d like to say to you, and I thought it might be easier on both of you if I were here.”

Max nodded in understanding.

“I guess the first thing I should do, Max…” Kelly said in a low, steady voice, “is apologize for my little outburst last week. When it comes to protecting my kids, it’s just second nature to react first and ask questions later. I’m not proud of how I treated you, and I am sorry for misjudging you. Do you think you can forgive me?”

He slowly nodded before bringing his eyes up to meet hers.

“It’s just really hard for me to know who to trust,” she continued. “ I’m not trying to make excuses, but if you’ll let me explain…”

“You don’t need to explain anything…”

“Yes. Yes, I do. Please…I promise I won’t take long.”

He could see how important this was to her, so he decided to listen to what she had to say. “All right.”

She took a deep breath, looking at Juanita for a boost of confidence. Slowly she exhaled as she said, “The boys’ names are Scott and Steven.”

“What do you mean?” he asked in confusion.

“The boys names are really Scott and Steven, and my real name is Samantha. Campbell and D.J. are names I took from one of my favorite movies, and Kelly was the name of my best friend from summer camp when I was a girl.”

All Max could do was stare at her in silence as he absorbed what she had just told him. He looked to Juanita for confirmation, and when he saw that this was obviously no joke he asked, “Why do you not use your real names?”

Kelly covered her mouth with her hand as she gathered her thoughts, a single tear trickling down her face as she tried to recount her reason for the aliases. She made several attempts to speak, but all that came out was a choked sob. Juanita took her other hand and gave it a tight squeeze, willing this traumatized young woman to take as much love and support as she needed. When it became apparent that Kelly could not find her voice through the sorrow, the matronly housekeeper began the explanation. “Max, Kelly and the boys don’t use their real names because they are hiding.”

“Hiding? From what?” he asked, his own concerned eyes turning to the woman breaking down in front of him.

“A few years ago, Kelly found out that someone was hurting D.J.,” Juanita began to explain.

“Hurting him?” Max asked naively.

“D.J. was being molested. Do you know what that means, Max?” the older woman questioned.

A frown crossed his brow as he said, “No, I’m sorry. I don’t.”

Kelly did not hide her astonishment at his admission. Juanita had told her that the teen-aged boy had led a sheltered life, but surely he must have heard of people being molested before. She began to voice her surprise when Juanita stopped her, the older woman’s hand held up like a policeman’s to indicate that it was better for Max to hear the terrible truth from someone he knew.

“Max, when a child is molested…it means that he is being hurt because someone is doing…sexual things to him.” She watched her young friend closely, hoping he would comprehend without her having to go into too much detail. She knew it was a fragile subject to discuss with Kelly present, but the boys’ mother had insisted that Max know the whole truth.

The frown on his brow remained, and just as she was about to clarify what she meant, his focus shifted from Kelly to her. His deep amber eyes revealed his every thought and emotion—anger, pain, disgust, revulsion, but most of all, comprehension.

Between the unfortunate run-ins with Carrie and the deepened level of his relationship with Liz, Max had learned enough over the past month that he knew exactly what Juanita meant by ‘sexual things’, and his stomach turned at the thought. “Who would do something like that to a little boy?” he asked as he looked at his friend in horror.

“His own father,” came the reply.

Max turned his head towards the voice, Kelly’s face now expressing the same hatred as her words.

“What?!” Max asked in shock.

“I’m afraid it’s true, Max,” Juanita said sadly.

He sighed in disbelief as he tried to digest the complete dreadfulness of the situation. Suddenly his eyes widened as he realized exactly why Kelly had reacted the way she had when she found him asleep with the boys. “I would never do anything like that to your children,” he said almost inaudibly, his emotion-filled voice choking on the words as he willed her to not think the worst of him.

“I know that now, Max, but at the time I had no idea who you were. You can’t imagine how surprised I was to see you in my room, let alone in the bed.”

“But I thought you knew who I was…the boys said they had told you about me.”

“Yeah, they had. They had also told me about Jerry and Marty and Rudolph and a slew of other imaginary friends they have made up. They need to do something to entertain themselves while they’re holed up in a motel room day after day.” She gave him a guilty smile as she said, “ I just never expected you to be a real live person.”

“Please believe me when I tell you that the last thing I would ever want to do is harm someone, especially an innocent child. I am very sorry for causing you such trouble.”

“I have to take full responsibility for any trouble that was caused, Max,” Juanita piped in. “I had planned to tell Kelly all about you, but you two had your little confrontation before I got the chance to talk to her in person. Next time I will at least leave a note.” She gave a nervous chuckle as she focused on Kelly. “To tell the truth, it has been so long since we’ve had someone new stay around here for any length of time that I let my guard down, and that’s something that can’t happen again. The next person who shows up here may have very different motives than Max.”

“What do you mean?” Max asked cautiously.

“What she means is that for the past two and a half years the boys and I have been hiding from their father. I know he still has people looking for us, even if he himself has stopped looking.”

“He is the one who did something wrong. Why are you the ones hiding?” Max questioned.

“They are hiding because the police said Kelly couldn’t prove that Chuck molested D.J.,” Juanita explained.

“He was not punished for what he did?” Max asked incredulously.

Kelly shook her head. “Not only was he never punished, but he told the police that I only accused him because I had planned to leave him and wanted to be sure I got custody of the boys. And they believed every word he said. When we went to court he got his friends to lie for him…they told the judge I had had sex with several of them in front of the boys…Chuck told me that he’d spend every penny necessary to be sure he got the boys…”

Max was finally putting the pieces together, “So you took the boys and hid them before that could happen…”

“I didn’t know what else to do.”

“Does D.J. remember any of what happened?”

“He remembers enough to be afraid of his father. He knows he used to be called Steven, and that he can’t talk about our old names or our old life if he wants his father to stay away.”

Max hesitated before he asked, “Did this Chuck hurt Campbell, too?”

“I don’t think so. Campbell was still pretty young, young enough that he doesn’t even know his name used to be Scott.”

“And that’s why they don’t go to school?” Max added, more a statement than a question. He studied the face of the mother across from him, realizing that she was probably much younger than she looked, the stress of having a secret life aging her too soon.

“How long have you known about this?” he asked Juanita.

“I actually helped hide them here…I was a friend of a friend of a friend, you might say. Close enough to keep tabs on the boys’ father but far enough removed that no one would be able to track them down through me.” He nodded his understanding. “Max, I don’t think I have to tell you how important it is that no one else knows about this,” she added.

Max did not hesitate with his reply. “The boys mean a lot to me. I will do whatever I can to help you keep them safe.”

“Thank you,” Kelly said sincerely. She wiped her eyes before continuing. “I married Chuck, so obviously I’m not the best judge of character, but I do trust Juanita’s judgment unconditionally. I just want you to know that I am truly sorry about what I said to you. I really had no idea…”

“You do not have to apologize. Now I understand why you did what you did, and I cannot blame you for that.”

She gave him a grateful smile. “The boys have really missed you. I spent a good part of Christmas day listening to all the things you have taught them…I was hoping that maybe you could keep teaching them, since they can’t go to school and all. It would be good for them to have a positive male influence around.”

Max gave a small chuckle at the though of being someone else’s teacher when he himself still had so much to learn. Still, he knew he could not refuse. “I’ll do my best to teach them what I know. And I’ll try to make sure they don’t go outside when they shouldn’t be there.”

“You have no idea what this means to me. Between you and Juanita I can breathe a little easier when I have to be away from them. Speaking of, I better get back upstairs before they tear up the room. Being cooped up day after day does take its toll. Besides, I hardly get to spend much time with them—I want to take advantage of my one day off.”

Juanita smiled at the two young people in front of her. Her sixth sense told her that they had more in common than they thought, and this pairing would help Max just as much as it would Kelly. She was just about to tell him so when he absently remarked, “Always having to be careful of what you do and say is not easy.”

“I don’t like living a lie,” the boys’ mother said as she and Juanita prepared to walk out the door, “but sometimes you have no choice but to hide the truth to protect the ones you love the most.”

Max couldn’t have agreed with her more.

Liz had spent the rest of the day listening to her parents describe their latest trip and going over the Crashdown receipts with them until all three had retired to their rooms around eight o’clock. She had hoped to persuade Max into continuing with his desert seduction, but he had seemed distracted by something…or someone. Still, he had just told her he was tired from reading part of the third book and was probably going to go to sleep early. She had accepted his explanation and after communicating back and forth for another fifteen minutes or so, she had left him on his own.

She was beginning to grow familiar with the tiny nuances of their connection. Now that she and Max were not in close physical proximity to each other, it seemed she was able to differentiate when he was focused on her and when his attention was elsewhere. It had been quite obvious that Max had indeed fallen asleep soon after they had stopped talking. She couldn’t quite put his absence into words. It wasn’t like when he had intentionally been blocking her, yet he just wasn’t “there”.

After watching part of an old black and white movie, she had eventually drifted into a fitful sleep filled with dreams she would not be able to fully recall. Now here it was one-thirty in the morning and she was wide awake, once again consumed by the desperate need to make love with Max. After staring at her ceiling for the past hour, Liz knew that she wouldn’t be able to get back to sleep any time soon. She closed her eyes to concentrate on Max, but it didn’t take long to realize that he was not awake. How could he be sound asleep while she was burning with desire? It just didn’t seem fair. She had thought about trying to wake him up, but she knew that even the most vivid fantasy would not relieve her ache. She had to go see him.

She slowly crept out of bed and slid her door ajar, making sure her parents were still asleep in their room. Upon hearing her father’s faint snoring, she closed her door and undressed as she quickly brushed her teeth. She threw on her cranberry sweater and faded jeans, skipping her bra and socks in favor of getting to Max a few seconds sooner. Tiptoeing to her window, she pulled on her shoes as she gently eased the window open. The brisk wind hit her face as it dawned on her that she forgot her jacket. She snuck back to her closet and grabbed it before climbing out onto her balcony. She lowered the window until there was no more than a crack at the bottom, then tossed her jacket on before climbing down the ladder.

The nervous energy continued to grow inside her until her steps became a steady sprint towards the one she now considered her mate for life, not noticing the chill in the air stinging her lungs until she was stopped directly across the street from the motel. Catching her breath she quickly ran her fingers through her hair, suddenly self-conscious of the burning ache that had motivated her to initiate this late night rendezvous.

Once she was sufficiently calmed down, she crossed the street and rounded the corner of the motel. Just the sight of Max’s room was enough to make her libido go into overdrive. In just a few minutes she would be exactly where she wanted to be…

Suddenly a strong hand gripped her arm and spun her around. She didn’t have time to scream before another hand covered her mouth.

posted on 9-May-2002 11:23:37 PM by SansuCry
Working on the next part now--hope to have it up some time next week.

As to whether the person who grabbed Liz was Max, all I will say is maybe.....

or maybe not.


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 9-May-2002 11:26:32 PM ]
posted on 22-May-2002 12:10:00 PM by SansuCry
It's next week already? Oh, it's past next week? Wow, that went fast...

I just want to thank all of you who are so kind to leave really does inspire me. I started this story to get the bad taste of Departure out of my mouth, and I can't believe I'm still writing it a year later. A special thanks to those of you who have been with me from the beginning. In case I didn't say this before, I will keep on writing until this story is finished or people stop reading it, whichever comes first.

I've even started writing a couple of other M/L fics that just wouldn't get out of my head, but I'm not sure if I should post them as I get parts done or wait until I'm finished with this one. What do you think?

Anyway, here's the next part...and it's semi-NC-17.

Chapter 56 (NC-17)


Liz’s voice pierced his mind as a wave of unbridled fear jolted him awake. It took him a mere second to get his bearings before he realized she was in trouble.

He leaped from the bed, panic threatening to overcome him before he could focus on his mate. He had to stay calm or he would be of no use to her. ‘Liz, where are you?’

‘Outside. Hurry!’

He bolted for the door and threw it open to discover Liz’s small form about one hundred feet away from him being restrained by a tall shadowed figure. “Hey! Get away from her!” he yelled as he ran towards the pair.

His voice startled the captor, who swiftly stepped away from Liz. The faint moonlight revealed a skinny man who appeared to be not much older than Max. When he saw the furor in Max’s eyes, he held up his hands in surrender. “Take it easy, dude. I’m not gonna hurt her or anything.”

Max wanted nothing more than to pummel this guy, but one look at Liz’s face and he knew that it would have to wait. He grabbed her hand and pulled her safely to his side, relief flooding their connection instantly. “What do you think you were doing?” he growled at the stranger who had dared to attack his Beauty.

The guy calmly lowered his arms once it appeared he had avoided a fight. Looking at Liz, he said, “Sorry, man. I didn’t mean to scare ya or anythin’. I didn’t know you were taken. My buddy and I just got back from Grady’s, but it’s too early to stop partyin’…it is Christmas break after all.”

“You’re one of the students from the college, aren’t you?” Max asked, the anger slowly draining from him.

Giving Max a mischievous smile, the young man replied, “You got it, pal. Name’s Paulie. Me and Jimmy only got two weeks away from the books and I plan to make the most of it, if you know what I mean.” Pointing at Max’s boxer clad body he continued, “Hey, I didn’t mean to interfere with your partyin’, dude. Are we cool?”

Recognizing that the man had really meant no harm to Liz, Max nodded.

Paulie then turned to Liz, “Maybe we can hook up tomorrow night if you don’t already have a date.”

Max pulled Liz closer to him as he said in a threatening tone, “She’s not available tomorrow night or any other night.”

Paulie glanced at Max before addressing Liz again. “Aw, man. You’re gonna be with the same dude every night? I was really lookin’ forward to havin’ some fun with you…Jimmy and me was even hopin’ for a threesome.”

“A WHAT?!” Liz asked incredulously.

“You know…a threesome. The guys on campus said you had no problem with that.”

Max gave Liz a confused look, not really knowing what Paulie was talking about but feeling a growing sense of anger coming from Liz.

“You’re here because you think I’m a hooker?” she demanded through gritted teeth.

“Call yourself whatever you want. Personally I prefer the term ‘compensated date’. All the guys around here know. Regency motel, short girl, long dark hair…why else would I stay in a dump like this over Christmas break? I wanted to be close to where the action is,” the young man said in a lighthearted voice as he rubbed his hands together greedily.

Max’s gaze shifted between the other two, his mind struggling to decipher their strange conversation.

“Well you were misinformed. I’m not a…oh my God, I don’t believe this. You think I’m Carrie!” Liz said indignantly as the realization hit her. Turning to Max, she repeated, “He thinks I’m Carrie,” as if her boyfriend had been deaf the first time she had said it.

“You mean you aren’t?” Paulie asked Liz as his face sank with disappointment. His eyes widened suddenly as he remembered the death ray look Max had given him just a few moments earlier. Noticing that Max’s expression was rapidly reaching that state once again, the young man stuttered, “Shit, man…I’m sorry. I just guessed…I didn’t mean to dis’ you or nothin’.”

Now that Max understood what this guy had been implying about HIS mate, it was taking every ounce of restraint to not cause some serious bodily harm. In his most threatening voice he said, “Why don’t you show us exactly how sorry you are by getting out of our sight.”

Completely sobered now, Paulie wasn’t foolish enough to argue. “Sure, man. Whatever you say.” Refusing to turn his back on the couple he had inadvertently offended, he slowly made his way over to the stairway that would lead him to the safety of his room.

Just as Max began to relax now that Liz was out of danger, a sudden flash of fury burst through their connection.

“Wait!” Liz yelled towards Paulie.

The young man froze in his tracks like a deer caught in the headlights, afraid that this non-Carrie girl wanted her boyfriend to extract a little revenge for his mistake.

Liz pulled out of Max’s grasp and strode purposefully toward the college student.

‘Liz, what are you doing?’ Max silently questioned.

‘I’m going to give someone a piece of my mind, that’s what.’

‘Beauty, please. Let’s just go back to my room…’

‘You go back to your room. This will only take me a minute.’

‘I’m not leaving you out here alone…’

‘Fine Max, but I’m warning you that this isn’t going to be pretty.’ Liz concluded as she reached the stairs and swiftly yanked a bewildered Paulie behind her. Unsure of what she was doing, he dumbly followed her, not wanting to cause any more damage by opening his mouth again.

After reaching the second floor landing, Liz abruptly stopped at the first room she came to, Paulie almost slamming into her. “Which room is yours?” she demanded.

Paulie silently pointed to the room next to the one they were in front of.

Plastering on a fake smile, Liz quipped in a sugary-sweet voice, “Why isn’t that special? The hooker you’re looking for is in the room right next to yours. How’s that for being close to the action?”

Unsure of exactly what kind of response she was looking for, Paulie could only say, “Uh…” before Liz continued with her mission.

“Let’s see if she’s home, shall we?”

Liz balled up her fist and pounded on the door several times. She stood there silently as she waited for an answer, the chilly night air making her breath visible as she played out the confrontation in her mind. She pounded again and was just about to conclude that the subject of her discussion was not there when the door slowly opened.

“What can I do for…well, if it isn’t Miss Goody Two Shoes. Lose your boyfriend again?” the raven-haired girl purred as she blew a mouthful of cigarette smoke at Liz. Noticing the young man nervously standing with Liz’s hand gripping his wrist she added, “Or did you get a new one?”

“I know exactly where my boyfriend is, thank you,” Liz retorted. “Strange you should mention Paulie here, though. See, I was on my way to see Max,” she began in an irritated tone, “when I was assaulted by this creep.”

“So?” Carrie asked in a bored voice as she impatiently looked at her watch. “What does this have to do with me?”

“He was looking for…what did he call it? Oh, yeah…a ‘compensated date’…more specifically a threesome for him and his buddy. And this is the funny part,” Liz said with no humor in her voice. “He though I was YOU! Isn’t that the damnedest thing you’ve ever heard? Imagine someone thinking I could be a shameless amoral slut like you…”

‘Liz…’ Max silently called to her.

‘Stay out of this, Max! This is between her and me.’

“No matter how desperate I was, I could never stoop so low as to do what you do…I’d eat garbage or let myself starve to death before I’d ever think of selling my body,” Liz spat out. Afraid to draw her wrathful attention, Paulie continued to stand there as she verbally assaulted Carrie, who just rolled her eyes at Liz’s comments. Catching the gesture, Liz continued her attack. “Just answer me one question before you start your ‘date’ with this weasel.”

“Go for it, Princess,” Carrie smirked as she pitched her cigarette over the railing, the burning tip nearly grazing Liz’s shoulder.

Glaring at her, Liz’s voice seethed with anger, “How can you even look at your reflection in the mirror? How do you live with yourself doing…”

“That’s two questions.”

“You know what? Just forget I asked, ‘cuz as far as I’m concerned, there’s nothing you could say that would justify…”

“It’s easy to judge me, isn’t it? Little Miss Perfect with the Suzy Homemaker mom and super supportive dad, the always-there-for-you best friend, the faithful, loving boyfriend, you have no idea what it’s like to be me. You don’t know the first thing about me…”

“I know that you’ll spread your legs for anyone who flashes a dollar bill in your face…”

‘LIZ, THAT’S ENOUGH!’ Max’s warning echoed in her mind.

“I said to stay out of this, Max!” Liz yelled down to him.

‘You’re going to start waking people up!’

“Are you done yet?” Carrie asked as she grabbed Paulie’s hand and wrenched his arm from Liz’s grasp. “ ‘cuz it’s time for me to go to work now.”

Liz was about to tear into the girl once again when Paulie finally summoned the courage to speak up, catching both the young women off-guard. “Uh…ya know, it’s kinda late. I think I’m just gonna go turn in.” He extricated his hand from Carrie and nearly ran to his room before slamming the door behind him.

Training their eyes on each other again, Carrie spoke before Liz could. “Why did you bother bringing me a customer if you were just going to chase him off with that ‘high and mighty’ crap of yours?”

Before Liz had a chance to respond, Carrie slammed the door in her face.

Liz raised her fist to pound on the door again when she was startled by Max’s hand grabbing her wrist, his pleading voice in her ear. “Please Liz. Let’s just go back to my room.” She was about to berate him for interfering when she turned to look at him. First she had been too scared and then too angry to notice that Max was outside in nothing but his boxers. Dropping her shoulders in defeat, she nodded before following Max down the stairs.

The couple made their way across the parking lot in silence. Seeing the door to Max’s room standing wide open, Liz suddenly felt ashamed that her pleas for his help had ended with that unpleasant scene with Carrie. Max’s obvious disappointment with her behavior only added to her shame. Once inside the room, he shut the door and moved to the thermostat, adjusting the temperature to compensate for the lost heat. Liz followed behind him, addressing him as soon as he turned around to face her. “Max, about the things I said to Carrie…”

“I really do not want to discuss Carrie right now,” he said in an irritated tone as he ran his fingers through his hair in frustration. “What I do want to discuss is why you were out walking around by yourself in the middle of the night.”

“I needed to see you,” Liz said weakly.

“You risked your life because you needed to see me?” he asked, his tone a mixture of disbelief and awe.

Liz nodded slowly, embarrassed that her overwhelming desire for him had completely obliterated every ounce of her common sense, “It sounds like a pretty silly thing to do when you put it that way…”

“Not silly, my Beauty—dangerous,” he said solemnly as he took her hands in his. Forcing her to look up at him he chided, “You know it isn’t safe to be out by yourself. What if that guy had wanted to hurt you?” Eyes shining with thinly veiled fear, he pleaded, “What if that had been Jake?”

“But it wasn’t him, and I’m ok,” she argued. Knowing that there was no real excuse she could give Max for scaring him awake, she added, “I’m sorry…I guess I just wasn’t thinking straight. I couldn’t sleep…and this craving for you was driving me absolutely insane. It’s like the only thing I could think of was getting to you.” Unconsciously, her fingers began to roam his bare chest, the light contact instantly restoring the intense desire that had been frightened out of her earlier.

“I am glad that you want me so much, my love, but you cannot imagine how it feels to know that you would risk your safety to be with me.” He kissed her forehead and implored, “Liz, you have to promise me that you won’t ever do something like this again.”

“I don’t know how to control these feelings, Max. I was almost crawling out of my skin…what happens the next time I feel this way?” she begged as she pressed her lips against his smooth, warm skin.

‘What you should have done tonight, my mate…wait for me to come to you,’ he silently instructed as he threaded his hand through her hair, bringing his mouth to hers in a passionate kiss and pulling her body flush against his.

‘My parents are home, so I thought you would say no if I asked…’ she explained while her hands crept to his waist, her fingers gently edging his boxers over his hips.

His own need for her automatically flaring to life at her insistent touch, his breath began to catch in his throat at the wondrous torture she was subjecting him to. Instinctively he slid his now naked body down her front to kneel before her, his hands lithely removing her clothes as his mouth greedily tasted her skin. Liz struggled to remain standing as he explored her with his tongue and lips, his intentional avoidance of the most intimate parts of her body only intensifying her desire.

He languidly worked his way up her body until he was standing in front of her once again. Cupping her face in his hands, he gave her several deep loving kisses, his lips lingering on hers as he whispered, “My Beauty…”

He stroked her arms with his fingertips as he moved his hands to her hips, gently nudging her to let him take her weight as she wrapped her legs around his waist. He carried her to his bed and lovingly laid her down, his hands supporting her back as though she were made of glass. Resting his weight on his elbows, he bent down and kissed the valley between her breasts as he reverently whispered, “My Elizabeth…”

Moving lower on the bed, his muscled back coaxed her to release the grip her legs had on him. He drew his hands down her sides, lightly caressing her heated skin as they moved towards her hips. His lips journeyed over her stomach to reach the commitment symbol on her hip, “My mate…”

Liz’s entire body was aching with desire. Every single touch of Max’s hand or brush of his lips was bringing her closer to the edge while his soft-spoken words created a prayer of devotion that filled her entire being with rapture. Sensing his own need and yearning in their connection, she raised slightly to see the passion she knew would be in his eyes.

His mouth was poised to take his first taste of her, the sight and scent of her desire for him overwhelming his senses. He so desperately wanted to make this last, to savor her sweet aroma, but the pleading in her eyes and the frantic need flowing through their connection caused him to suddenly sink his tongue deep into her. She lost control instantly, his name a barely discernible moan in the back of her throat as he gave her the release her body yearned for.

As her labored breathing slowed back to a normal rhythm, Max moved to lie next to her. Seeing the contentment on her face, he gently stroked her cheek and said, “I would never say no to you, my Beauty.”

“Is that a promise?” she asked as she stretched, her smile lighting up her eyes as she turned to snuggle into him.

“I’ll promise to never say no to you if you promise to not go wandering off by yourself again, especially in the middle of the night,” he scolded as he put his arm around her to pull her even closer to him.

“Agreed,” she said as she planted small kisses on his chest. Feeling her body begin to tense again with need, she quietly asked, “Why don’t we test our new agreement?”


Shyly peeking up at him, she said, “As much as I loved your tongue in me, that’s not exactly what I came here for.”

“What did you come here for, my love?” he teased. “Did you want to have some breakfast together or perhaps read a book?”

She raised up on her elbow and playfully slapped him on the shoulder. “You didn’t think you could just give me some flashes of us making love in the desert and get away with it, did you?”

“Not at all. Making love to you under the stars like that is one of my favorite dreams…but I think we had better wait until it is a little warmer, don’t you?”

“But Max, you just said you would never refuse me…” she said, dropping the smile from her face.
He gave her an incredulous look, “Liz, you can’t possibly be serious. Besides the fact that it is very cold out there, it is two in the morning…by the time we went all the way to the desert and back, it would be daylight…”

“So you’re going to break your promise to me already?”

“No…if that’s what you really want to do, then we better get dressed,” he said as he started to get up from the bed.

Liz rolled onto her back and broke out into a fit of laughter. Standing up, Max looked at her as though she had possibly lost her mind. She glanced up at him and upon seeing his confused expression, she started laughing even harder. Max stood frozen in place, uncertain what he should do. Finally he asked, “Liz, are you all right?”

When she had settled down enough to talk, she stood up next to him and gave him a soft kiss. “Relax, I was only joking about going to the desert. However, I was very serious about the making love part.”

Deciding that turnabout was fair play, Max pulled away from Liz. He walked towards the table and sprawled out in one of the chairs, positioning himself to blatantly reveal his desire for her. “Well, we have a little problem here…”

Seductively moving over to him and kneeling down, she took his erection in her hand and said, “I wouldn’t exactly call it a little problem, Max.”

He took her hands and lightly tugged on them, indicating that he wanted her to stand up. Sensing the increasing hunger in their connection, he guided her to straddle his lap. He cupped her breast in his hand, circling her nipple with his thumb while he rested his other hand on her hip. In a semi-arrogant tone he said, “As much as you want me, Beauty, we cannot make love without a condom.”

“Where are they?” she asked, removing his hand from her breast so that she could suckle his fingers.

“We forgot to put them in my bag…they’re still at your place.”

Liz immediately stopped her ministrations. “Are you sure? I thought I took them out of the drawer and put them by the computer.”

“You did, but they never made it into my bag. Remember, the phone rang and after you stopped talking we decided to get some breakfast…I didn’t discover they weren’t in my bag until I finished unpacking it.”

Disappointment clouded Liz’s eyes as she realized Max was telling the truth. She was literally aching with desire for him and now they would have to go back to the apartment if they wanted to make love. “I guess we’d better get dressed,” she said sadly as she began to climb from his lap.

Max grabbed her sides and wrapped his arms around her back as he pulled her tighter to him, his teeth gently biting her neck and shoulder.

“Max, please…I’m already going crazy, here. Let’s get back to my place,” Liz pleaded. She felt him smile against her throat before he released her from his grasp. She climbed off of him and went to the other side of the bed to retrieve her clothes. He continued to sit in the chair, and when he made no attempt to move Liz sighed out in frustration, “Are you going to get dressed?”

Giving her a cocky grin, he smirked, “Sure. Why don’t you bring me my jeans? They’re folded up on the dresser over there.”

Liz gave him an aggravated look as she grabbed the pair of pants and tossed them towards him. She pulled her panties on as she watched him set the jeans on the table and pull his wallet out of the pocket. Sensing her growing irritation, he opened the wallet and began rifling though it non-chalantly. She picked up her sweater to put it on, keeping one eye on his movements, or lack thereof. Annoyed that he was looking at his ID when she was obviously in a hurry to get going, she finally put her hand on her hip and demanded, “Max, are you going to put your jeans on so we can go?”

Casually looking up at her, Max gave her a sexy half-smile. ‘Actually I would rather put this on so we can come,’ his voice echoed in her mind as he held up a small foil packet. She recognized it instantly.

“You brat,” she screeched, throwing her sweater at him. “You knew you had that all along, didn’t you?”

“You aren’t the only one who knows how to joke, my love,” he teased as he set her sweater on the table next to his jeans. “Come here,” he gently commanded, pointing to the floor in front of him. She slowly made her way back to him. “You aren’t mad at me, are you?” he asked, hoping he hadn’t taken things too far. He didn’t sense any real anger coming from her.

“Surprised is more like it. Max, you are the last guy I would ever imagine walking around with a condom in your pocket,” she said as she took to package from his hand.

“Michael told me it might be a good idea. He mentioned something about a Boy Scout motto.”

Liz opened the package and took the condom out. Taking his erection in her hand once again, she stroked his length several times until she felt his lust for her escalating out of control. “Always be prepared?”

“Yeah, something like that,” he choked out as she rolled the condom over his burning flesh. His eyes followed her as she bent down to step out of her panties.

She lifted her eyes to meet his as she balanced her hands on his shoulders and positioned herself over his lap, her wet heat taunting him with each slight movement of her body. Her gaze never leaving his, she leaned in close to him and gave him deep, hungry kisses.

‘Are you prepared for me, Max?’

The adoration in his eyes reflecting the power her words had over him, he answered her question by taking her face in his hands and whispering, “Yes, my Beauty.”

With his simple acknowledgment, Liz allowed her legs to slowly relax. As if by silent agreement he entered her gradually, both lovers using every last bit of their composure to not let things end too quickly. Once they were completely joined, they stilled their bodies to focus on the sensations flowing through their connection…endless passion…abiding love…limitless devotion…and an unquenchable desire to become one.

After countless minutes, they began to move together in perfect unison, and in spite of the strong physical need for release, they slowly, tenderly made love. Golden amber eyes remained locked with chocolate brown ones, each marveling at their unique bond until they could no longer contain the increasing surge of emotions and finally allowed their bodies to experience the same completion as their souls.

posted on 27-May-2002 1:09:01 PM by SansuCry
BelevnDreamsToo, your wish is my command. Hey, two parts out in less than a week...hope I don't spoil ya.

Tabasco Liz, how's the baby? Emily is growing like a weed. She's already fifteen pounds!

For everybody else, if you aren't reading Go Ask Elizabeth by Ashley or Double Jeopardy by sheeperz, you should be. They are both fantastic!

sheeperz, if you're still reading this story, I just gotta give you a big thumbs up. I am awed by your ability to keep track of who knew what and when.

Once again, thanks to everyone for the feedback. It makes staying up 'til 3 a.m. to write worth it.

Chapter 57

As the couple approached the front of the Crashdown, Liz instantly spotted the light on in her parents’ bedroom. “Damn, someone’s awake. I’ve got to get to my room!”

They covertly made their way to the alley and up Liz’s ladder, Max half-guiding, half-lifting her all the way up. She almost landed quietly, but at the last second her foot caught on the edge of the brick wall. She cringed at the loud scraping sound her lounge chair made as she grabbed it to keep herself from falling.

‘Are you all right?’ Max silently asked her.

Nodding, she turned to gaze at him in horror. ‘Max, you have to go…my parents can’t find you here.’

‘I love you,’ he whispered as he gave her a brief kiss before scaling back down the ladder and quickly disappearing from sight.

Liz ran to her window and cautiously opened it, slipping inside with as much stealth as she could muster. She kicked off her shoes and tip-toed across the room, throwing her jacket off just as the door to her room burst open. She immediately froze.

“Liz, is everything ok in here?” Nancy Parker asked with worry. As soon as she saw her daughter’s clothing, she demanded, “Why on Earth are you fully dressed at three-thirty in the morning?”

Trying to hide the guilt from her face, Liz looked around her room until her eyes landed on her journal. “I couldn’t sleep, so I decided to go out on my balcony and write in my journal for a while.”

“What was that noise I heard a minute ago?”

“Me being clumsy. I tripped over the leg of the lounge chair. That’s all. I’m sorry if I woke you up.”

Sighing with exhaustion, Nancy rubbed her eyes, “You didn’t wake me…it’s that darned jet-lag. I don’t mind you staying up since you’re still on vacation, but if you feel the need to write in your journal, young lady, I would appreciate it if you would stay inside to do so. Understand?”

“Yes, Mom,” Liz said as she hung her head, her heart beginning to race as she spotted the box of condoms prominently displayed on her desk, not more than a few feet away from her mother. Hurriedly moving to block them from her mother’s line of sight, she added, “Actually I was starting to fall asleep outside, so I’m going to put my pajamas back on and go to bed. Good-night.”

“Good-night, baby,” her mother said, stifling a yawn. She backed out of Liz’s room and shut the door behind her.

Liz let out the breath she had been holding and reached behind her to grab the condoms. In a flash she opened her closet to hide them, her eyes darting between her bookbag on the floor and the door her mother had just exited through, silently praying she wouldn’t be interrupted before the box was safely concealed. Once the bookbag was back in her closet, she collapsed on the floor, relieved that she had escaped such a close call.

‘I’ve got to be more careful,’ she chastised herself.

‘I believe I already told you that,’ Max’s voice whispered in her thoughts.

She broke out into a smile as she leaned back against the bed. ‘My mom was in my room just a minute ago. If she hadn’t been so tired, she definitely would have seen the condoms on the desk.’

‘Did she ask where you had been?’

‘Yeah. I told her I had just been sitting out on the balcony because I couldn’t sleep.’

There was silence for a minute before Max’s voice echoed in her mind. ‘So I guess this means I shouldn’t come and see you tomorrow night.’

Liz sighed in agreement. ‘I don’t think we should take the chance…not seeing you for one day is going to be hard but if we end up getting caught, we’ll be separated for a lot longer than a day.’

‘I agree. Is there any way you can come to see me sometime later today or during the day on Friday?’

‘No, I have to work all day today since I traded that one shift with Agnes, and I promised my dad I’d help him set up the restaurant Friday for his senior citizens’ New Year’s Party.’

‘Oh,’ Max said sadly.

Trying to be cheerful Liz said, ‘But we’ll be together Friday night. My folks always let me spend the whole night at Michael and Isabelle’s house. In the meantime, you better brush up on your social skills.’

‘I just got back to my room. I think I’m going to get some sleep.’

‘Are you trying to change the subject?’

‘Not at all, but if you have to start work at 6, I think you had better get some sleep as well, my Beauty.’

‘Max…don’t tell me you’re going to back out of our agreement.’

‘I promise I will not disappoint you Friday night, Liz.’

‘I have complete faith in you, Max.’

‘Good-night, my mate.’

‘Good-night, my mate.’

Max smiled with contentment as he closed the door to his room. He was almost looking forward to living up to his agreement with Liz. But before he tried to befriend any of her classmates, he needed a little practice.

And he knew just where to go.

Liz was not having a good day. If it weren’t bad enough that she had to function on practically zero sleep, the fact that seemingly everyone in Roswell had eaten at the Crashdown at some point during the day, except the one person she wanted to see, only made matters worse. Max had offered to come to see her but with the restaurant so busy, she knew that she wouldn’t be able to spend even a minute alone with him. Besides, if she were near him, she knew she would have to touch him, kiss him, make lo…no, she couldn’t even let her mind wander there or she’d never make it through the rest of the day.

“Where are all these people coming from?” Maria asked as she blew a strand of hair out of her face, her hands too busy filling drink orders to perform the task.

“I think it has something to do with the whole Y2K thing,” Michael theorized as he handed Liz one of her orders.

“Y2K?” Liz asked, not getting the connection.

“Sure,” her dad piped in as he brought another order to the pick-up window. “They want to eat at the best place in town one last time before everything goes kablooey.”

“Kablooey? That can’t be a real word.” Maria commented.

Liz rolled her eyes at her father’s explanation. “Dad, it’s going to be just another New Year’s. It’s not like it’s the end of the world.”

“Well young lady, if the world doesn’t come to an end, then today’s receipts will go a long way towards paying for your first semester of college,” her father said pointedly.

“If the rest of the day is this crazy, you won’t be using that money for college…you’ll be using it for my funeral,” Liz said over her shoulder as she carried the tray of food to her customers.

“For God’s sake, why won’t you two just leave me alone?” Carrie spat out as she saw who her visitor was.

“Um, I’m by myself,” Max said as he nervously eyed the cigarette dangling from her hand.

“And what? You came to dig the knife a little deeper?” she snapped. “Or did you change your mind about taking me up on that freebie?”

“It’s Thursday. I’m here to clean your room.” He explained. When she didn’t move from the doorway, he hastily added, “I can come back later.”

Taking a long drag, she sighed and stepped back. “Get it over with.”

Max entered the small room, momentarily stopping in his tracks as the smoky haze invaded his senses. His heart leapt in his chest as the door shut behind him, countless memories wreaking havoc on his recently acquired courage. Gathering his resolve, he made his way to the bathroom and began tidying up Carrie’s recurrent mess.

This was his last room to clean for the day, and he wanted to finish so that he could hopefully begin working on his social skills. He did his job briskly without being any less thorough than usual, even as his attention was continually being drawn to the raven-haired girl who had tried to seduce him. She had plopped down in one of her chairs, positioning it with her back to him so that she could stare out the window. If it weren’t for the occasional movement of her hand from her mouth to the overflowing ashtray on the table, he would have thought she had fallen asleep. Seeing her from this angle, he could understand how that Paulie guy might have mistaken Liz for her. Both girls were short with dark hair, although even with his limited knowledge he could tell that the flat black tint of Carrie’s mane was anything but natural. He could even picture Liz wearing the faded jeans and simple black top that currently clothed the young woman ignoring his presence.

He made sure all his supplies were packed up before he grabbed the nearly full trash bag and approached her. He gingerly reached for the ashtray, his hand instinctively recoiling when she moved to put out her cigarette. She caught his reaction out of the corner of her eye but refused to look at him. He quickly shook the ashes into the bag and tied it up, setting it next to the supplies.

“I’m all done,” he said, more to himself than to her. When she didn’t answer him, he began to wonder whether this was such a good idea after all. In any case, there was one thing he had to do. “Carrie?”

“Sayonara,” she mumbled dismissively.

“May I talk to you?”

“Now how did I know that you didn’t come here just to clean my room? You could have sent ol’ Juanita to do that, right?”

He didn’t want to admit that had been the plan, at least until this morning. To say his mentor had been surprised when he told her he would still be cleaning the girl’s room was an understatement. Nevertheless, she had merely given him a shake of her head as she reminded him that she would be more than glad to take on the added responsibility if he changed his mind. If this didn’t go well, he just might wish that he had taken her up on the offer. In response to Carrie’s observation, he merely said, “I was not here last week, so Juanita cleaned all my rooms for me.”

When she continued to absently stare out the window he began, “About the things Liz said to you last night…”

“Look pal, this is my room. I don’t need to hear any more of your holier-than-thou crap in my own…”

“She was wrong,” he said in an even tone.

Carrie finally turned to him and fixed him with a skeptical look. “What did you say?”

“It was wrong of Liz to talk to you that way, and I am sorry she did.”

Ignoring the sincerity in his voice, she focused on his words. “Do you always go around apologizing for other people’s actions?”

“I am not apologizing for her. Only she can do that. I just wanted you to know that I do not feel the same way she does,” he clarified.

“That’s easy for you to say now. I seem to recall you were pretty quiet on the subject at the time.”

Realizing that Carrie had no way of knowing he had been silently castigating Liz, he said, “And for that I do apologize to you. Although I should have been more vocal with my disapproval of Liz’s actions, she is well aware that I am not happy with what she did.”

“Apology accepted. Are we done talking now?”

“Actually, I do have something else to tell you, but would you mind going outside to talk?”

“C’mon, you’ve bee in here for over half an hour…I’m not gonna jump your bones. Unless you want me to, that is.”

“Jump my bones?” he questioned.

“You can’t really be this naive,” she muttered, part of her still believing that his reaction to her the last time he was in her room had been nothing more than an act.

“Sometimes I have a hard time understanding people,” he explained. The art of conversation was more exasperating than he could have ever imagined.

Her features softened when she realized he wasn’t bullsh*tting her. Once again, he really had no idea what she meant. “It’s a figure of speech. I’m telling you that I’m not going to try to have sex with you.”

“I did not think you would.”

“Oh, I see. You just don’t want the neighbors to wonder what’s taking you so long in here.”

“No, that’s not it. I…”

Carrie held up her hand. “Relax. We’ll do it your way. Why don’t we sit on the steps,” she suggested as she picked up her pack of cigarettes and lighter.

“Umm…do you mind leaving those in here?” he asked as he pointed to the items in her hand.

“You sure are a demanding one, aren’t you?” she asked in a sarcastic voice, her features revealing that she didn’t mean to be as harsh as she sounded.

He looked around nervously, trying to decide exactly how much he should tell her, “It’s just that I…”

“…have a thing about cigarettes. Yeah, I gathered that.”

Surprised, he gave her a puzzled look. “How did you know?”

“You mean besides the panicky looks you’ve been giving my ash tray?” she quipped as she placed the cigarettes and lighter back on the table. She steered him out of her room and shut the door behind her so they could continue their conversation in a place that didn’t make him feel so uncomfortable. Settling alongside the wall at the top of the stairs, she crossed her legs Indian style and waited for Max to sit down. He slunk down the metal support and leaned against the railing across from her before she continued, her tone now completely serious. “I’ve seen a few cigarette burns in my days, but I gotta admit I’ve never seen so many scars on one person before. I’m surprised you’re even able to look at a cigarette with the kind of damage you’re carrying around.”

His jaw dropped at her observation. “But when did you see them?”

Looking at her watch, she recalled, “Oh, about fourteen hours ago…you in just your underwear…you came to retrieve your crazy girlfriend from my doorway. Don’t tell me you’ve already forgotten?”

Max looked away, not wanting her to see the shame and embarrassment that plagued his features. “No. I did not forget, although I would like to.”

“I’m not trying to upset you. We don’t know each other, and I don’t expect you to tell me what happened with the cigarettes. Now that I know it’s a problem, I’ll be more careful around you, ok? And as for that incident with your girlfriend, we just won’t go there again. Agreed?”

Max closed his eyes a minute to contemplate his response. He had asked to talk to her, but so far he had allowed her to carry the conversation. He could walk away now without exposing any part of his life to this girl or he could do what he had originally planned and use this as an opportunity to befriend someone who was more like him than he wanted to admit. Looking down the stairway he said wistfully, “Liz is surrounded by people who care about her. Her family, her friends…they are always there for her. She doesn’t know how it feels to be truly alone, to have no one else to rely on but yourself. She doesn’t know what it’s like to be you.” Lifting his eyes to meet hers, he quietly added, “But I do.”

Carrie did not react to his admission but continued to stare at him, trying to ascertain his true motive behind this conversation.

“You probably won’t believe me, but she really is a good person. She is the most loving, caring, understanding human being I have ever met. She is usually so…”


“No. I assure you, she is just the opposite. I could not believe she was saying such terrible things to you. She has never acted that way before.”

“Maybe you’ve just never seen her act that way before, Max. You might not know her as well as you think you do.”

“I know her better than you could ever imagine,” he said reverently. “Before she came into my life, I had nothing. I can’t begin to tell you all that she has done to help me. I wouldn’t be here right now if it weren’t for her.”

“You’ll excuse me if I don’t join the Liz cheerleading squad just yet,” she said as she started to get up. “As much as I’ve enjoyed your little speech, I really do need to get back to my room now.”

“Wait!” Max begged as he reached out to stop her departure. “I’m sorry. How Liz acted isn’t really what I wanted to talk about.”

“What did you want to talk about?” she asked, wondering what else could be on his mind.

“You do not have to answer me, and please do not think I am criticizing you in any way,” he began, dropping his hand from her arm.

“All right,” she drawled out.

Glancing at the row of doors down the hallway, his eyes landed on the room where Paulie and his friend were staying. “How can you…have sex…with someone you don’t love?”

“Why don’t we go back to my room and you can find out for yourself?” she asked, automatically adding a seductive element to her voice.

Max’s gaze instantly snapped back to the girl in front of him. “Carrie, I cannot…”

“Relax, Romeo. I was just kidding,” Carrie softly snorted out a laugh as a distant look crossed her face, her vision focusing on some invisible object in the parking lot below. Just as Max was about to apologize for stepping over the line with his question, she asked him, “Did you ever play pretend when you were young?”

“I never played any games when I was young,” he admitted with a tinge of sadness.

“I’ve never stopped playing pretend,” she narrated as though she had not heard his reply. “Day after day, I am whoever my date wants me to be, and all I have to do is close my eyes to make him the man of my dreams. Sometimes I make believe he is Richard Gere in ‘Pretty Woman’, and he just showed up in his stretch limo to sweep me off my feet. Other times I imagine he is my husband and we’re on our honeymoon, making love on a warm, sandy beach. Over time I’ve managed to develop quite a few…diversions.” She began to anxiously jiggle her foot as her body began to suffer from the lack of nicotine in her system. “I can even make myself believe that I no longer have any feelings. Sometimes I think I’ve been pretending for so long that I don’t even remember who I really am anymore. If I ever knew in the first place.”

“Then why do you continue to do it?” he asked, both of them knowing what he was really asking.

She could tell by the compassionate look in his eyes that he was not judging her. He honestly wanted to know how she had gotten to this point in her life. “Why else? I need the money?”

“But there have to be other things you could do for money.”

“Probably,” she said thoughtfully. “It’s not like I’m going to be doing this forever, though. As a matter of fact, I’m going back home pretty soon. My mom’s birthday is in the middle of January, and I promised I’d be there to celebrate with her.”

“How far away is home?”

“About a thousand miles…a little town in western Illinois named Kewanee.”

“Does your mother know what you do?”

“No. It would break her heart if she ever found out…she already has enough problems raising my five little brothers and sisters on her own. She doesn’t need to be worrying about me, too.”

“You said she’s on her own? Where is your father?”

“He died when I was ten.”

“I’m sorry,” he said simply, “For everything.”

I don’t want your pity, Max.”

“I’m not trying to give it to you. I just meant that I understand…how it feels to be all alone. And I know what it is like to do things that sicken you, if it’s the only way you can survive.”

“Well, this certainly isn’t what I had planned for my life, but it will be over soon enough. Before long this will all be behind me and I’ll finally be where I really want to be.” No longer feeling comfortable discussing the hows and whys of her own life, she gave Max a friendly smile and asked, “So what about you? Where’s your family?”

“Liz is all the family I have.”

Carrie wanted to offer him her condolences in jest, but she though better of it. Regardless of how she felt about the arrogant girl who had sat in judgment of her, it was obvious that Liz was very important to Max. And no matter how much Carrie wanted to pretend otherwise, she couldn’t deny that Max intrigued her. She had almost been insulted when he had refused her initial sexual advances, but at the same time she couldn’t help but have a healthy dose of respect for someone who had such noble notions of love. After the encounter with his girlfriend last night she thought perhaps she had given him a little too much credit, wondering how he could pledge his love to an obviously heartless person.
The fact that he was here with her now, willing to accept responsibility for his part in that unpleasant confrontation, went a long way in restoring her opinion of him. And on top of that, he seemed genuinely concerned for her. As far back as she could remember, she had never known a guy who wanted nothing more from her than her friendship. This was definitely uncharted territory.

“Any friends?” she asked.

“A few people I’ve met through Liz. Juanita. Some of the other tenants,” he recounted. Making his point obvious he added, “Hopefully one more after today.”

Her heart soared. He really did want to be her friend. Without all the sexual stuff to get in the way, she hoped that maybe she wouldn’t have to pretend with him. “I’d like that, Max.” He gave her a shy smile before she continued, “I don’t want to cut this short or anything, but I really need to get back inside and have a cigarette.”

“That’s ok. I promised that I would spend some time with D.J. and Cambell, so they’re probably waiting for me.”

The two stood up at the same time, both going back to her room. Carrie waited until Max had left with all his cleaning supplies before lighting up, her mind instantly wandering to the scars she had seen on him. He hadn’t gone into any detail when she had asked about his family, so she wondered whether someone related to him had caused the grotesque mutilations. Had he lived such a terrible childhood that he had never been allowed to play any games as a child? There were so many things she wanted to know about him that it was almost worth sticking around this hellhole to find out.


Max stayed with Cambell and D.J. until their mother came home at six o’clock. He had planned to make a small dinner for himself once he got back to his room, but he could not refuse the boys’ pleas to stay and eat with them after Kelly had made the offer. Not only did he enjoy watching his young charges interact with their mother, but it served as a distraction from his body’s mounting need to make love to Liz.

He was fortunate that he had been able to suppress his desires to a manageable level, the knowledge that it was too risky for them to attempt an encounter bolstering his resolve. And although Liz generally had a more difficult time controlling her urges, she had run herself so ragged waitressing that her body craved little more than a good night’s rest.

The couple had communicated back and forth as Liz performed her bedtime routine, her voice gradually fading away soon after she laid down. She was fast asleep. Nevertheless, he waited another hour to be certain she would not awaken before he retrieved the journal that contained the history of Antar.

As much time as it seemed to take him to translate the first two books, he knew it would be a few weeks before the others began to question what this third book had to say. If only he hadn’t admitted that he could read it…

He flipped through the journal for the hundredth time, knowing that he wouldn’t find what he was searching for. Towards the end of the book, it was obvious that several pages had been hastily removed, pages detailing the history he should not be able to remember.

In the long run, any attempt he made to erase the truth probably would not make a difference. Although it seemed they could not remember the vast majority of it, the fact remained that Michael and Isabelle had been instilled with the data the books contained. It seemed Michael was correct when he indicated the information they could recall was instinctual. They knew what they were and how to use their associated powers. They had already known what a diad was the first time he had met them. If they should happen to gain access to more of their untapped knowledge, it more than likely would center around him, especially since they had ended up here of all places.

A few weeks.

A few weeks before he had to decide what to do, what to tell Liz. A few more weeks to pretend that he could have the life, the family he wanted. Whether it was presented in written form or revealed by those he considered his friends, the reality of his identity would be exposed. And once that happened, he knew that the one person on Earth who loved him no longer would.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 27-May-2002 3:11:20 PM ]
posted on 8-Jun-2002 8:39:07 AM by SansuCry
OOPS! Double post...see below.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 8-Jun-2002 8:48:30 AM ]
posted on 8-Jun-2002 8:41:31 AM by SansuCry
OK Folks! Happy New Year's! I had to break this down into two parts because it's so long, but it's mainly transitional stuff.

I was finally able to get over the last stumbling block in the plot, so as long as I can find the time, this fic should be coming out a lot faster than before. Looks like there will be about 15 more chapters, and after this one they should be pretty action-packed.

As always, thanks for the great feedback and welcome to any new readers. I'd really love to hear what you think.

Remember, everything you know or think you know about the aliens may or may not be true....

Chapter 58

“What’s your poison?” Maria asked in her finest bartender voice, straining to be heard over the pounding beat of the music.

“Cherry Coke if you have it,” Liz yelled to her best friend as she twisted back and forth on the barstool.

“Sure thing, chica.”

Liz positioned herself so she could see the card table across the room where Michael, Tommy and Kyle were sitting. A proud smile came over her face as she watched Max’s eyebrows furrow in concentration, his gaze focused on the cards in his hand as Alex, his own personal guardian angel of poker, peered over his shoulder and advised him on his next move.

“Look’s like Max is having a good time,” Maria said as she set Liz’s drink down.

Cupping her hand to her ear, Liz leaned closer to Maria, “What did you say?”

“I said, ‘It looks like Max is having a good time’.”

“Max is having a cool lime?” Liz asked, confused.

Maria rolled her eyes. She held up her finger to Isabelle to indicate she was taking a break as she stalked out from behind the bar. She picked up the plastic cup of Cherry Coke and shoved it in Liz’s hand, then proceeded to grab the other hand to drag her friend behind her. They slowly made their way through the throngs of people until they were outside on the empty patio, the loud music now nothing more than a deep drumming sound. They settled down at the picnic table as Maria took a few deep breaths.

“Wow, I cannot believe how many people are here,” Liz commented as she looked back into the house.

“Yeah…I guess everyone wants to party like it’s 1999. Oh wait, it is! At least for…three and a half more hours,” Maria joked as she looked at her watch. “So how’s Max holding up? It looks like he’s having a good time.”

“He was pretty nervous when he saw all the cars here but as soon as we got in the door, Michael introduced him to Tommy. They hit it off pretty well, so that made him relax. I think he might actually be having fun.”

“So one down, three to go? Wow, and you guys have only been here half an hour?”

Liz nodded, “I wanted to be here sooner, but my Dad conned me into helping him with the senior citizens. He wanted me to stay until they did their toast, but thank goodness my Mom talked him into letting me go.”

“Parents…what can you do?” Maria commented.

“Oh my gosh. I forgot to tell you,” Liz’s eyes widened. “My Mom almost found a box of condoms in my room.”

“What? How? Don’t tell me she was snooping through your things,” Maria said in astonishment.

Liz’s cheeks blushed in embarrassment as she admitted, “No. Stupid me left them out on my desk. Max was supposed to take them with him when he went back to the motel, but we forgot to pack them.”

“Oh. That’s not good.”

“Tell me about it. At least they’re safe and sound now.”

“We haven’t really had a chance to talk about this, but I assume that you two finally…?” Maria questioned with raised eyebrows.

Liz nodded enthusiastically, “Christmas Eve was the first time.”

“Wait…did you say a box of condoms? What happened to the ones I gave you?”

Liz’s cheeks deepened again. Quietly she squeaked out, “We used them up.”

“Already?” Maria asked with surprise. “Damn girl, I told you to not use them all in one day.”

Liz ducked her head shyly as she admitted, “Technically, it was more like 36 hours.”

Maria jumped up from the picnic table, “YOU’RE SHITTING ME!!! Oh my God, Liz. You’ve got to be shitting me. One a day, maybe two a day, I could see, but… PLEASE tell me you are joking.”

“Maria, calm down,” Liz ordered, looking around to make sure her friend hadn’t needlessly alerted the people inside.

“CALM DOWN?” she asked as she threw her hands up in the air. “You drop a bomb like this on me and you expect me to CALM DOWN?” Finally lowering her voice, she added, “I gave you ten condoms. Ten. That’s like once ever 3.6 hours. Besides the fact that you would have needed to stop for food…and sleep, this was your first time, Liz. How did you handle the pain factor?”

“Max helped me take care of that part. He taught me a little trick—mind over matter I guess you’d say.”

Maria looked at her best friend in disbelief. “So you really used up ten condoms in a day and a half?”

Liz simply nodded.

“Have you slowed down any or are you still going at it like rabbits?”

“Nice analogy there, ‘ria.”

“You know what they say…if the condom fits. Now answer my question.”

“You know, I’m not used to talking about my sex life.”

“You’re Liz Parker…you shouldn’t even be having a sex life.”

“In any case, will you promise to keep this between you and me? No accidental running off at the mouth, not even to Michael?”

“I promise, Liz.”

Liz gave her best friend a doubtful look. Even so, she knew Maria would browbeat it out of her eventually. She might as well just get it over with. “Well, since my folks are back in town, we aren’t doing it once every 3.6 hours anymore…”

“But you would if you could?”

“It’s so weird, ‘ria. It’s like Max put some kind of force on me. I can’t get enough of him.”

“He’s that good, huh?”

Making sure they were still alone in the cool night air, Liz said quietly, “If we go too long without making love, I start crawling out of my skin with this…craving for him. I even went to the motel at two in the morning to be with him, it was so bad. I think it has to be alien related somehow—even though Max is my first and all, I know it can’t be normal to be this…needy.”

“What’s so great about normal, anyway?” Maria teased. “But I gotta tell you, as far as why it’s happening, I really think you two are just horny for each other instead of it being some alien influence. I mean, Spaceboy and I sure like doing the deed, but I don’t need it so bad that I would risk my safety just to get some. That’s just crazy.”

“That’s not the only crazy thing I did that night,” Liz said pensively. Not wanting to frighten her friend, she decided to omit certain events. “After I ran off to the motel in the middle of the night, I went off on a hooker.”

“You went off on a hooker?” Maria asked to confirm that she had heard Liz correctly.

“I ran into this prostitute named Carrie who lives at the motel. I just started yelling these awful things at her about how much I loathed her for what she was. It’s not like I’d ever be friends with someone like her, but I would never say such mean things to anyone. I don’t know why I got so angry with her, but I snapped and suddenly these dreadful words were coming out of my mouth. If Max hadn’t stopped me, I think it might have even turned physical.”

“Yeah, you’re right. That doesn’t sound like you at all. So what did Max have to say about this little encounter?”

“He hasn’t said anything yet, but I know he was upset with me. I tried to talk to him right after it happened, but at the time he was more concerned with me being out alone in the middle of the night.”

“Well I don’t blame him,” Maria said emphatically. “So, did this confrontation happen before or after you…uh…satisfied your craving for Max?”


“See. There’s the problem. Maybe this extreme horniness of yours influences your emotions. You were just so sexually frustrated that you went temporarily insane and didn’t know what you were doing.”

“I don’t think Max is going to buy that explanation.”

“C’mon. What guy wouldn’t like knowing that you wanted his bod so badly you were willing to start a fight to get to him?”

“MARIA!” Liz shouted as she threw her empty cup at her friend.

Picking it up off the patio Maria sighed, “Well, chica. I better cut break time short before Isabelle has a fit.”

Standing up and taking in a final breath of fresh air, Liz said, “That’s ok. The poker game is over and Max wants me to come back in.”

Peering through the patio door, Maria strained to see the card table where the guys had been. When she could see nothing but groups of people standing around, she turned to give Liz a puzzled look.

“What’s wrong?” Liz wondered.

“How do you know the poker game is over?”

“Oh…um…remember how I told you that Max and I could communicate with each other when we are touching?”

“Yeah,” Maria answered suspiciously.

“Well, it seems that one of the side effects of Max and I making love is that we can now talk to each other even when we aren’t touching.”

Maria’s eyes grew wide at the admission. “Wow. That is just too damn bizarre. So, like, can Max hear what I’m saying right now?”

“Yes and no…we’re still trying to figure out exactly how it works. Max can hear my half of the conversation, but he can’t hear you. I can hear his thoughts and what he is saying to the guys, but I can’t hear them.”

“So basically you have two conversations going on in your head, yours and his? I wish I could say I’m jealous, but I can barely keep track of my own thoughts let alone someone else’s. I’m happy keeping my silent communications with Michael restricted to our intimate moments, thank you very much.”

“Well, I can’t hear or talk to Max unless I concentrate on doing so. It isn’t automatic.”

“Oh. Ok, so now I am jealous. I could have some fun with that. Like telling Michael to buy me an engagement ring and letting him think it was his idea.”

“’Ria, you are so bad.”

“And don’t you forget it, baby!”

“I really have to get back in there. Max is getting nervous. Besides, I’m not really dressed to be outside.”

Maria opened the patio door. “After you.”

posted on 8-Jun-2002 8:45:19 AM by SansuCry
(Ch. 58 continued)

After the poker game had ended, Max watched as Michael, Tommy and Kyle went their separate ways. Tommy joined a group gathered around the television in the den as Kyle circulated through the crowd, slowly making his way to where Tess was gossiping with a group of girls. Michael stepped behind the bar to give Isabelle a break, and she poured herself a drink before going to sit down at the card table with Max.

“Hey, Max. How’s it going?”

“Good. It looks like you’re keeping busy.”

“I’ll say,” she commented as she sipped her drink. “Did you see where Alex ran off to?”

“He went to the bathroom. He said he would be back in a few minutes.”

Isabelle laughed, “Well, he obviously didn’t see the line for the bathroom. I think he’ll be gone a lot longer than a few minutes.”

Glancing around the room to be sure no one was paying attention to them, Max leaned closer to Isabelle and inquired, “May I ask you a question about Alex?”


“Actually it’s more a question about your relationship.”


“I know that Michael and Maria have made love, and I was wondering whether you and Alex have?”

“Whoa. You don’t beat around the bush do you?” she asked.

“I am sorry. I do not understand what that means.”

“Well, that’s kind of a personal question.”

“I did not mean to offend you.”

“I know. It’s just that there are certain things you shouldn’t go around asking people, and that is certainly one of them.”

“Oh. In that case, I am sorry that I asked.”

“It’s ok, Max, really. If any other guy had asked me that, I might be upset. But I know you’re still trying to figure out this stuff. The answer is no, by the way. Why do you want to know?”

“Liz mentioned that Alex doesn’t know that you are…different. I just wondered whether that affected how close you allow him to get to you.”

“Of course it does. I mean, there are other reasons besides that why Alex and I haven’t…gone all the way, but I’d be lying if I said it weren’t a big part of it. I always have to keep my guard up, making sure I don’t say or do the wrong thing.”

“Alex seems like an understanding person. Wouldn’t it be easier to just tell him the truth?”

“Sometimes I think so, but then reality sets in and I can’t go through with it. Maria and Liz found out and accepted you and Michael because you gave them back their lives. About the only thing I could do to Alex is take his. Somehow I think if he knew that, he wouldn’t be so understanding.”

“Instead of looking at it in terms of hurting him, consider the fact that you can protect him from harm.”

Isabelle rolled her eyes, “Just what every guy wants…a girlfriend who beats up bullies for him. That’s good for the fragile male ego.” The tone of her voice indicated that she wanted to end this particular part of the discussion, so Max quickly steered the conversation to the other subject he wanted to discuss with her before she could object.

“Isabelle, may I request a favor from you?”

“It depends on what it is,” she answered, concerned over his sudden change in demeanor.

“It has to do with Liz. Since you do have…certain special abilities, will you please protect her for me?”

“Of course, Max. Michael already talked to me about your worries over Jake. If he shows up anywhere near Liz, I won’t hesitate to do what I have to to keep her safe.”

“I don’t mean just Jake, Isabelle. Please, promise me, that you would protect her from anyone who was trying to hurt her,” he asked, the desperation apparent in his voice.

“Sure, Max. I promise,” she said with trepidation, “but who else would want to hurt her? Do you think those other two guys might…?”

Her question was cut off by a pair of hands clamping down on her shoulders. “Hey, Poker Buddy,” Alex said to Max before he bent down to kiss Isabelle on the cheek. “Babe, the toilet upstairs is plugged, and there’s water everywhere. I couldn’t find anything to unclog it with, so can you look for a plunger and some rags for me?”

Isabelle groaned. “Yeah. Can you just give me a minute?”

“Only if you want a bigger mess to clean up. The natives are getting restless.”

“I guess we’ll finish our conversation later,” Isabelle said to Max as she stood up from the table.

Max just gave her a sad smile as she and Alex walked away. When they were out of sight, he stood up and headed in the direction he had seen Liz go earlier.

‘Liz, where are you?’ he silently asked.

‘I’m outside on the back porch with Maria. Are you all right?’ she inquired, feeling the nervousness coming from him.

‘Yes. Our game is over. I am alone right now.’

‘Do you want me to come back in?’

‘I don’t want to interfere with your talk.’

Even as he said the words, Liz knew that Max needed to see her. ‘We were just finishing up anyway. I’m coming in right now.’

‘I love you, my mate.’

“Hey Max! Come here. You’ve gotta see this new Nintendo system,” Tommy called to him as he passed through the living room. Max looked back and forth between Tommy and the dining area, debating whether to go to Liz or interact with his new friend. Noticing the couple of guys sitting with Tommy, he took a few deep breaths before heading over to join them.

‘I’ll be waiting for you by the television,’ he advised Liz. ‘Can’t miss an opportunity to reach my four friend goal, now can I?’

‘Especially since it should be ten.’

“Hey, Max. This is Mark and over there is Tim,” Tommy gestured as he made the introductions.

‘I won fairly, did I not?’

‘That’s debatable.’

“Nice to meet you,” Max said as he held out his hand to the two boys.

Mark just grunted at Max, unwilling to take his eyes of the television screen where he was currently shooting up bad guys.

Tim grasped Max’s hand and gave it a firm shake as he said with a smile, “So you’re the guy who’s dating Lizzie Parker, huh?”

‘If you would like a rematch, I’m sure Michael would let us use his room.’

“Yeah, that’s me.”

“She’s a nice girl. A little too straitlaced for my tastes, although I gotta admit she’s looking pretty hot tonight,” Mark complimented as his eyes rapidly shifted between Max and the television.

‘Oh no you don’t. As um… excited as I am, I’d end up letting you talk me down to zero in no time just so we could spend the rest of the night making love.’

“She’s the best thing to ever happen to me.”

“You’re a lucky guy,” Tim agreed.

‘And this would be a bad thing?’

“So Tommy, what is this Nintendo you wanted to show me?”

‘Don’t tempt me, Max! Do you remember what you promised me earlier this evening?’

“Mark got the new UK2000 game for Christmas. Have you seen this thing?”

‘You’ll have to refresh my memory, Beauty. Did I make this promise before or after you ended up naked in my bed?’

“I don’t believe so.”

“I’m gonna go get something to drink while I wait my turn. You guys want anything?” Tim asked the group.

“Get me a beer,” Tommy requested.

“Me too,” Mark added.

‘After you so easily seduced me, I made you promise that we would stay downstairs and mingle instead of hiding out all night.’

‘Oh, that promise. Well you will be glad to know that Tommy has just introduced me to two other people, and I’m actually making an effort at conversing with them as this very moment. As for the rest of it, I believe that if I do end up spending time on the second floor of this house, it will be at your request.’

“I’ll have whatever you are having.”

‘You mean you don’t want me as much as I want you?’

“C’mon, Mark. You can play this any time. Let Max have a chance to try it out.”

‘You cannot honestly believe that, my Beauty, especially since you are wearing that dress. It is taking every ounce of my restraint to not steal you away from here and spend the rest of the night removing it from your exquisite body once again. However I gave you my promise, and I plan to keep it unless you direct otherwise.’

Mark grumbled as he handed the game controller to Max.

‘You never cease to amaze me, Max. I wish I could be even half as strong as you are.’

“What am I supposed to do with this?”

“You mean you’ve never played a video game before?”

‘Oh no. They want me to play something called a video game. What should I do?’

‘Let them teach you how, I guess. Listen, if you think you’ll be ok for a while, I’d better go stand in line for the bathroom before I join you.’

“No, I haven’t. Will you show me what to do?”

‘I’m sure I will be all right. However, I believe I will need to focus my complete attention on learning this video game.’

‘I’ll stay out of your head, then. I’ll come to see you as soon as I can.’



‘I think you are much stronger than you know, my love.’

“No problem. See the buttons here. Each one makes the guy on the screen do different things. Button A makes him jump, B and C make him hit or kick, and D is for his weapons. Now you have to do hand to hand combat to earn your weapons, so D doesn’t come into play until the higher levels. If you’ve never played a video game before, you probably won’t get past level one, so I won’t bother getting into the different weapons you can earn….”

Alex and Isabelle were just coming downstairs as Liz got in the long line for the bathroom on the main floor.

“Hey, everybody. The upstairs bathroom is operational once again,” Alex announced, holding his hands over his head in a triumphant Rocky pose as sporadic applause filled the room. He protectively moved Isabelle out of the way as a large group of people hurried to the stairs to take advantage of the repaired facility.

“Alex, you’re my hero,” Liz teased as the line in front of her was instantly reduced by half.

“I live to serve, my lady,” Alex quipped as he took a deep bow.

“Speaking of, aren’t you supposed to be playing bartender?” Liz asked Isabelle.

“Well, Michael stepped in to give me a break since Maria abandoned me, but I spent it helping Alex fix the toilet.”

“Awww. How romantic,” Liz teased. “Seriously, I didn’t mean to keep Maria away for so long. Don’t worry though. She’s back to work now.”

“Liz, if you really need to go to the bathroom, I can get the keys and unlock the one in my dad’s office,” Isabelle offered.

“No, you don’t have to go to all that trouble. I’ll be fine.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yeah. You two kids go and have some fun before you get roped into bar duty again.”

“All right. See you in a bit.”

“You are one lucky S.O.B., Max,” Tommy said admiringly.

“Or you were just bullshitting us,” Mark added, the accusation obvious in his voice.


“There is no way in hell that this could be your first time playing Nintendo. You nailed every last friggin’ shot. I’ve been playing this thing practically nonstop since Christmas, and I haven’t gotten anywhere near level 30,” Mark complained.

“I am telling the truth. I have never played this game, or any other video game, before. I am able to learn things quickly, and I think that and a lot of luck,” Max said as he gestured towards Tommy to acknowledge the boy’s previous comment, “is the only reason I did so well.”

“Here’s your beer, Max. It’s probably warm by now, so you might want to go exchange it for a cold one,” Tim said as he handed the can to Max.

“I don’t mind that it’s warm,” Max answered as he flipped the top to open it, just as he had seen the others do. “Thanks for getting it for me.”

“Hey. How about a toast?” Tommy piped in as he raised his beer can. The other two lifted their cans as well, so Max followed suit. “To our new pal, Max. The best damn UK2000 player I’ve seen yet.”

“Salud!” Mark yelled.

“I’ll drink to that!” Tim added.

Max watched as the three boys greedily gulped down the rest of their beers. He lifted his own drink to his mouth but before the first drop reached his lips, the can was unceremoniously ripped from his hand. He began to protest the sudden theft until he saw the panicked look on the pilferer’s face.

Max! Don’t drink that!

“Liz? What’s wrong?”

“Um, nothing,” she said, not wanting to reveal the reason for her distress in front of the others. Putting the can behind her back, she leaned up and gave Max a lingering kiss. “I just can’t stand the taste of beer.”

“C’mon, Parker. You can’t deny the man his drink,” Mark griped.

“Watch me,” she said as she set the beer can on the coffee table. “If it’s a choice between me and a beer, I guarantee you I’ll win hands down,” Liz said as she looked over her shoulder at the other teen. Silently she urged Max, ‘Let’s get away from these guys. I have something important to discuss with you. Now.’

The couple began to walk away from the three boys when Tim called after them, “I don’t know that you should be giving your boyfriend any ultimatums, Lizzie. He’s pretty dangerous, you know.”

Abruptly stopping in her tracks, Liz turned around to face the group. “Excuse me?” she asked, unable to conceal the shock on her face. Quickly recovering, she made a feeble attempt to mask her concern by giggling as she hesitantly questioned, “Max, what is he talking about?”


“You could have seen for yourself if you had been here a few minutes ago,” Mark said cryptically.

“Seen what? What happened?” she inquired, her heart beating a little faster. Had Max done something to make them suspicious of him? Damn! Why had she left him alone for so long?

‘I swear to you, Beauty. Nothing happened,’ Max silently pleaded.

“Relax, Liz. These guys are just trying to ruffle your feathers. They just mean that you should have seen Max kicking some ass on this new Ultimate Killer game. He’s got some great hand-eye coordination going there,” Tommy explained.

Liz slowly released the breath she hadn’t realized she’d been holding. “What is it about guys and video games? You know, you take those things way too seriously for your own good.” Squeezing Max’s hand tighter, she said to him, “I better get you away from here before these jokers completely corrupt you.”

“I may be a joker, but at least I’m not whipped,” Mark grumbled under his breath.

“Careful Mark. You’re looking a little green, there,” Tommy said mockingly.

“Yeah. If you get any more jealous, you’ll look like one of those plastic aliens at Lizzie’s Dad’s restaurant,” Tim joked.

“Aw, shut up.”

Liz gave a genuine laugh as the boys argued among themselves, her pulse quickening when Max’s arm came around her possessively as he quickly lead her away.

“That was close,” she sighed as she guided him into the empty kitchen, automatically pulling his body flushwith hers as she leaned back against the counter.

“Liz, I’m sorry that they upset you,” Max said anxiously as he looked at her with forlorn eyes.

“Don’t worry about it, Max. I shouldn’t have let myself overreact,” she shrugged, her eyes crinkling in a reassuring smile. “However there is something I neglected to warn you about. We could have had a major problem on our hands if you had actually taken a drink of that beer.”

“What do you mean?” he asked, frowning uneasily.

“Maria told me a while ago that Michael can’t drink beer or any other alcoholic beverages. It seems that he got very drunk on just one sip. If your physiology is similar to his, you might react the same way.”

“How would I know whether or not I was drunk?” he asked innocently.

Liz thought a moment before she addressed the question, not certain that she should bring up the haunting memories of his time in Jake’s captivity. “One of the flashes I got from your nightmares was of Jake’s friend making you drink some whiskey. Do you remember that happening?”

“How could I ever forget?” he asked sorrowfully, recalling the burning liquid that he had been forced to consume.

She tenderly brought her hand to his face, affectionately caressing his cheek as she prompted him for more information. “Did drinking the whiskey make you feel strange in any way?”

Max closed his eyes to concentrate on that horrible time in his life, drawing strength from his mate’s loving touch. “It is difficult to know with any certainty. I hadn’t slept or eaten for several days, so I cannot say whether my reactions were from the whiskey or just due to exhaustion.”

Although Liz knew from their shared nightmares all that had happened to Max during his time with Jake, hearing him talk about it was still excruciatingly painful and knowing that there was nothing she could do to change the past was almost unbearable. She rested her head on his chest, her lips pressing a chaste kiss on the patch of warm flesh created by the V of his shirt. The soft brush of his lips against her forehead was all it took for a tear to catch in her lashes.

‘Please do not be sad, my Beauty. We should be enjoying our time together.’

‘You’re right. In a little less than two hours, it will be a new century, so I think now is a perfect time to start looking to the future.’

A soothing thumb swept the moisture from her face before his fingers lightly directed her lips up to meet his, his love comforting her as he slowly swept away her sorrow with his gentle kisses. His hand instinctively threaded through her hair as their kisses deepend, passion quickly threatening to quell the other emotions present in their connection. Reluctantly the lovers separated, torn between continuing with their mutual physical adorations or returning to their friends in the other room. Somehow Liz knew she’d never hear the end of it if Maria caught them making out in the middle of the kitchen.

Changing the subject before they could get too carried away, Liz surmised, “Since we can’t be sure how it will affect you, I think you should play it safe and avoid drinking beer or anything else that contains alcohol.”

“How am I going to determine whether or not something contains alcohol?” Max questioned as he stroked her hair, unwilling to lose all contact with her.

“Just stick to drinking soda or juice and you should be ok. Or you can always just ask, I guess,” she reasoned.

“All right,” he agreed.

“Better yet, only take drinks that Michael, Maria or Isabelle give you. I’ll make sure they know that we decided you shouldn’t drink alcohol, so they’ll only give you things that are safe. How does that sound?” she asked as she looked up into his expressive amber eyes. Seeing all his love reflecting back at her almost made her lose her train of thought.

“I’d do anything for you, my beloved Elizabeth,” he breathed out in a reverent whisper.

“Anything?” she asked, raising her brow inquisitively.

“You know I could never deny a request from you,” he concurred, the adoring strokes of his fingers over her bare shoulders reinforcing his devotion to her.

Reaching up and taking his hand in hers, she ushered him out the door and back into the crowd. ‘Then I suggest we find our own little corner of the dance floor so you can practice your infamous hand-eye coordination on me.’

“Ok, everybody, gather around,” Michael yelled from the second floor landing, his arm firmly wrapped around Maria’s waist. The crowd of guests congregated below them, their chatter dying down as Michael raised his hand to speak. “We’ve only got a few more minutes of 1999 left, so make sure you have your drinks ready for our midnight toast. I just wanted to take this time to make a few announcements. First of all, thanks to all of you for coming tonight. You are the ones who truly make this party great, and we hope you’ve all had a fun time. Second, I know a lot of you are going to want to cut out of here within the next hour, so for those of you who have been boozing it up tonight, you have two choices. You can catch a ride home with one of our designated drivers, who are: my sister Isabelle, Alex Whitman, Randy Clark, Joe Summers and Karen Jones. And for those of you who don’t want Mommy and Daddy to know what you’ve been up to, you’re more than welcome to sleep off your hangover here since my folks won’t be back in town until Sunday afternoon. The ladies will be occupying the upstairs bedrooms while the gentlemen get to sack out in the living room and the den.”

“Hey, Michael, is that so we’re closer to the leftover food in the kitchen?” a male voice called out from the back of the room.

“We invited you to the party, Sean. Do you really think there are any leftovers?” Maria hollered back, followed by a chorus of “ouch”es and “oh”s.

“Third,” Michael raised his voice, “there are no…”

“Two minutes ‘til midnight,” Alex shouted.

“Hurry it up, Michael,” Maria prompted.

“Third, there are no private rooms tonight. I don’t feel like washing a ton of sheets so if any of you couples get the urge to do the nasty, then by all means go get a motel room. Finally, have a Happy New Year everyone!”

“Thirty seconds!”

“Shouldn’t we have our drinks ready?” Max bent down to whisper in Liz’s ear.

“Don’t worry about it,” she murmured back, “I have a better plan.” She pressed her back into him and wrapped his arms tightly around her waist, turning just enough to stare up into his eyes.

“Here we go!” Maria directed.










She reached up and pulled his mouth down to meet hers, the sweetness of his lips compelling her to instantly deepen the kiss as she silently whispered a timeless mantra of passionate devotion to her mate.


His entire being surged with loving contentment as he poured every ounce of adoration into the kiss he was giving the young woman who had so easily captured his heart.


Completely oblivious to the revelry surrounding them, it was several minutes before the young couple broke away from each other.

“I had to make sure I was kissing you at midnight,” Liz said quietly.

“Why?” Max asked curiously.

“Because my Grandma Claudia had a saying: the first person you kiss after midnight on New Year’s is the one you will spend the rest of the year with.”

Max buried the notion that Grandma Claudia’s proverb would soon be put to the test. He only hoped he could somehow prove her right.

posted on 21-Jun-2002 2:25:26 AM by SansuCry
Oops. I got ahead of myself. This is another long chapter (posted in two parts), but once again more info and not much action. Now Ch. 60...well, let's just say you don't want to miss Ch. 60. I will warn you now that it will be very heavily NC-17.....

For now, on with the show.

Chapter 59

“Wow, chica. It is like ten in the morning and you’re still up here? I thought for sure that you’d run downstairs to be with Romeo the second you woke up,” Maria marveled as she stretched to work the kinks out of her back, her mouth automatically forming a yawn as she finished.

“He’s a little busy right now,” Liz explained.

“Too busy for you?” Maria asked with surprise.

“He’s working on new friend #5 at the moment. Adam Ramirez.”

“So why don’t you go give him some moral support?”

“I have to stay up here. All the guys are in the kitchen making breakfast for us, but they want it to be a surprise.”

“How did you find out then?” a familiar voice asked from the doorway.

Maria and Liz exchanged glances that indicated neither one of them had known Tess was close enough to listen in on their conversation.

Thinking quickly, Maria’s eyes widened, “Didn’t you know, Tess? Liz has psychic abilities. She can read minds.”

“Really?” the gullible blonde asked as she came into Michael’s room and sat on the floor. “You know one of my aunts on my Dad’s side had some type of psychic power. I think she had premonitions about what was going to happen in the future.”

“That’s generally what a premonition is, Tess,” Maria said, turning her head sideways so the girl wouldn’t see her rolling her eyes.

“Tess, Liz doesn’t really have any psychic abilities,” Isabelle grumbled as she sat down on the bed next to Maria.

“Then how did she know about breakfast?” Tess asked dejectedly.

“That’s easy. First of all, take a good deep breath. Smell the food cooking? It looks like we’ll be having bacon…scrambled eggs…French toast? no…pancakes…freshly squeezed orange juice…and coffee…lots of coffee for some of us…for breakfast. And since we’re all still up here, that must mean the guys are the ones doing the cooking, especially since it smells like they may have burnt something.”

“What about the surprise part then?”

“Obviously the guys want it to be a surprise. Otherwise they would have been up here half an hour ago dragging our butts out of bed and begging us to help them.”

“I guess I didn’t think of that,” Tess observed.

Liz gave Maria a relieved look. She was definitely going to have to be more careful about what she said. Her connection with Max was the most natural thing in the world to her, so much so that she could easily forget how otherworldly it actually was.

Deciding it would be best to change the subject, Maria looked out into the hallway and asked, “Did the other girls go home already?”

“Yeah,” Isabelle answered. “Shelly caught a ride with Gina and Tina about an hour ago. Pam and her gang took off as soon as she was sober, and Trudy said she had to go practice for some play.”

“It’s a musical, not a play,” Maria muttered, “and the part shouldn’t have gone to someone who can’t sing her way out of a paper bag.”

“But at least you’re not bitter about it,” Liz gently teased her friend, knowing how much Maria had really wanted the part.

“Look on the bright side, Maria. Since you don’t have to spend all you’re free time practicing, you have more time to spend with Michael,” Tess said cheerily.

Maria gave Tess a light smile. Looking around at her friends, she asked, “Speaking of, what does everybody have planned for today? Anything special?”

“Alex and I talked about going out to Mirror Lake if it isn’t too cold out,” Isabelle began.

“If it is too cold you could always snuggle up under a blanket together,” Tess suggested. “Kyle and I are going to see a movie, if we can ever agree on which one to see. He’s into those weird martial arts ones, which I can’t stand. And of course, he won’t be caught dead going to a chick flick. How about you two?”

“I’ve gotta get my folks’ car back pretty soon or they’re going to throw a fit,” Liz said. “The restaurant is closed today, so at least I don’t have to work. Max and I don’t have any definite plans. We’ll probably just spend the day at the mo…his place.”

“Does he live around here, Liz? I’ve never seen him at school,” Tess inquired.

“He doesn’t go to West Roswell,” Liz said evasively, stealing scared glances at Maria and Isabelle.

“Where does he go?” the blonde pushed.

“Actually, he doesn’t go to any school,” Liz admitted, not knowing what else to say.

“Wait. You mean to tell me that braniac Liz Parker is dating a drop-out?” Tess shrieked.

“He’s not a drop-out,” Maria defended. Technically she wasn’t lying, since Max had never been enrolled in a school to drop out of. “He just, um…moved here a few weeks ago.”

“And his parents haven’t signed him up for school yet?”

Liz wanted to scream. Why did Tess have to be so damn nosy?

“It’s just a paperwork problem,” Isabelle interjected. “Something about not being able to find his transcripts, right Liz?”

“Right,” Liz agreed eagerly, thankful that her friends were fast thinkers. Diverting the focus away from Max, she added, “You didn’t tell us what you and Michael have planned for the rest of the day, Maria.”

“Well, we’ll probably spend a good part of it cleaning up all the mess from the party. And washing a ton of breakfast dishes from the sound of it.”

“I can come back and help you after I drop off my mom’s car,” Liz offered.

“Nah, Michael and I have it under control,” Maria said as she waved her hand dismissively.

“Are you sure? I know Max wouldn’t mind sticking around to help out.”

Isabelle gave an exasperated snort. “Don’t feel too sorry for her or my brother, Liz. The reason Alex and I were planning to go to Mirror Lake is because Michael told me in no uncertain terms that these two wanted the house to themselves this afternoon.”

Liz raised a suspicious eyebrow at her friend before picking up the nearest pillow and throwing it at her. “How convenient of you to leave that part out!”

Maria caught the pillow in mid air and tossed it right back at her friend. “Look who’s talking, chica! Or should I call you Bunny? Don’t forget to eat your carrots, Bunny!”

The pillow hit Liz squarely in the face, but before she could get in a retaliatory move, Michael’s voice boomed from the top of the stairs, “Hey sleepyheads! Get your butts up and downstairs on the double! Breakfast’s waiting for you!”

Maria leaped off the bed and dashed for the door, “Whoo! Whoo! Saved by the yell. Last one to the table is a rotten egg!”

“Do you really need to take me back to the motel?” Max asked as Liz pulled away from the Evans’ house, his hand caressing the length of her arm in a reverent manner.

“We’ll only be apart long enough for me to get the car back home. I’d take you with me, but I don’t think you really want to meet my parents,” Liz said dryly.

“What if I said I do want to meet them?” he prompted.

“I don’t think that’s such a good idea, Max.”

Max pulled his hand away from Liz as though her words had burned him. He quickly turned to look at the scenery passing by outside the car window, not wanting her to see the single tear that so willingly trickled down his cheek. However masking his sorrow from her wasn’t so easy, and she immediately pulled off to the side of the road to give him her full attention. After putting the car in park she turned to him, reaching over and stroking his dry cheek with the back of her hand. “I didn’t mean to upset you. Did I say something wrong?”

“No,” he said in a defeated tone. “I don’t blame you for not wanting your parents to know about me.”

Suddenly Liz comprehended what had brought about his quick change of demeanor. She moved her hand to grip his chin, forcing him to look her full on. She felt an ache deep in her heart when she saw the dampness blemishing his handsome features. She tenderly wiped away the tear with her thumb as she quietly explained. “Max, please don’t think I said that because I’m ashamed of you or embarrassed by you. There’s nothing I want more than to shout from every rooftop that we are committed to each other, that in every way imaginable, you are my husband. I can’t hide how much I love you…anyone who sees us together can easily tell how important you are to me. That means my parents would more than likely notice our closeness, too. Once they do, they’ll put two and two together and will begin asking a lot of questions that neither of us are ready to answer yet.” Moving in close to him so she could grace him with a gentle kiss, her voice wavered, “We’ve already had a few close calls, my love, and I just need to be with you so much right now that I don’t want to take a chance on how they will react. I don’t know what I would do if they tried to make me stop seeing you.”

Feeling her anxiety, he reached up to wrap his hand around hers. “You are right, Beauty. I should not have let myself get so upset. It is still difficult for me to believe that you accepted me as your mate, and I am afraid that there will come a day when you regret that decision.”

She affectionately whispered to him, “I could never be sorry that I committed myself to you, never regret that I’ve been allowed to feel everything you feel when you look at me. To see myself as you see me, and to know that in your eyes I am beautiful, makes me feel like the most cherished person on the face of the Earth. You can call me selfish if you want, but I would never give up all the love you have given me.” She climbed into his lap and wrapped his arms around her waist for support. Holding his face in her hands, she forced his eyes to lock with hers. “Max, this is the beginning of a brand new year. It’s a time to leave the past behind us and focus on our future. From this day forward, I don’t want you to have any doubts about us. I don’t want to hear you think that you don’t deserve me or that you aren’t worthy of my love, because if anything I don’t deserve to be put on the pedestal that you have built for me. All I want is to have your unconditional love and to give you mine in return. Please?”

Max’s only response was a potently drawn-out kiss that sent a shiver of desire throughout Liz’s entire body. His hands instinctively moved to caress her soft curves, her quiet whimpers directing his every touch.

‘Do you know how badly I wanted to help you change out of your dress last night?’ he silently asked.

‘You made sure I knew…but if I had let you, I know exactly where that would have lead. Even I have my limits, and I don’t think I could have made love to you in the bathroom with an entire house full of people listening.’

“Now we’ll never know, will we?” he said aloud as he shook his head from side to side, the mirth evident on his face. As innocently as possible he added, “Although if you don’t get back over there and start driving this car, we’ll find out whether I can resist making love to you out here in the open.”

“Mmm, I could spend the rest of the day just like this,” Liz purred as she ran her hand over Max’s bare chest, her body still attempting to calm itself after their latest bout of loving. It never ceased to amaze her how much joy he felt just having her touch him, the ecstasy of their actual joining sometimes becoming secondary to the simple sensation of her skin contacting his.

“So then why don’t we, my mate?” he breathed against her hair.

“Because I’ve been thinking about the party last night,” she said while her fingers slowly trailed down his arm until they lovingly entwined with his.

“All right,” Max responded apprehensively, not quite certain what she meant.

“Well, the way I see it, you worked very hard to make some new friends. Now I think it is my turn. If you don’t mind, I would like to meet some of your friends here at the motel. It will be nice to put some faces with the names of the people you talk about.”

He brought their joined hands up to his mouth and feathered her knuckles with delicate sweeps of his lips. Not sure whether he should broach the subject, he hesitantly said, “Well, you have already met Carrie.”

“I’d hardly consider her a friend, Max,” she scoffed.

“But I do, Liz,” he said quietly.

She raised up on her elbow to look him in the face, trying to gauge whether he was teasing her. When she saw the seriousness of his expression, she asked, “Since when?”

“Since I went to talk to her about your…disagreement. Liz, you said some very mean-spirited things to her, and I just wanted her to understand that you don’t really feel that way.”

“How do you know that I don’t feel that way?”

He disentangled his fingers from hers to trail them down the side of her face. “You really need to ask how I know what you feel?”

“No, I guess not. I suppose you expect me to go apologize to her.”

“Liz, I don’t expect you to do anything. I hope that you would apologize because you truly are sorry for the way you acted, but if I have to ask you to do it it is meaningless.”

She sighed as she flopped back down on the bed, “Yeah. You’re right. I just don’t know what to say to her…I still can’t believe that I did that. Not that this is any excuse, but I don’t think that I’ve ever felt that much anger before…it’s like I had no control over it…how do I explain that?”

He shifted on the bed until he was leaning over her. “I think it would be enough for her to hear that you are sorry without having to try to explain yourself.”

She gave him a resigned smile. “All right. She’ll be the first person we go to see. But then I want to meet Juanita.”

Max grimaced, “Sorry, Beauty. She isn’t here on the weekends.”

“Well, this is turning out to be a really great plan,” she pouted. Worming her way underneath his warm body she rubbed her head against him like a playful kitten, her voice anything but innocent as she pleaded, “Let’s just stay in bed after all.”

Torn between his desire to satisfy his mate and his eagerness to share his friends with her, he quickly suggested, “If we can manage to delay making love for a little while, I can take you to meet Ginny. You can even see the picture of Michael’s donor.”

“I guess that will have to do,” Liz said with feigned exasperation, the corners of her eyes crinkling in a smile as she gave them an exaggerated roll. She reached up and pulled his face close to hers until their lips barely met. “As long as you promise to make love to me once more before I have to leave, you can take me to meet every last person in this building.”

“How can I resist such a tempting offer?” he asked before he gently tugged on her bottom lip, needing to taste the sweetness of her mouth. She teasingly allowed him entrance a little at a time, mimicking the way he had tormented her earlier when she had been frantic to have him buried deep of inside her. They shared several languid kisses before silently agreeing to depart from the soothing confines of the bed to commence with their plans for the rest of the day.

“She must not be here,” Max said as he and Liz stood outside Carrie’s door.

“She was probably pretty busy last night, with it being New Year’s,” Liz said with a hint of disdain in her voice. When Max gave her a dissatisfied look, she continued, “I’m sorry, Max. I do plan on apologizing to her, but you need to understand that it doesn’t mean that she and I are going to get along.” He started to protest, so she held up her hand to stop him. “I know. I know. If you want to be friends with her, I wouldn’t think of trying to stop you. But that doesn’t mean I have to be friends with her.”

“It would not upset you that I am friendly to her?” he asked with surprise.

“I’m not going to lie to you and say I think it’s a great idea, but if her friendship is something you want, then be friends with her. I’ll learn to deal with it,” she assured, wondering whether she was trying to convince him or herself. “Since she obviously isn’t here though, I guess my apology will have to wait.”

“I suppose so,” he conceded. “At least I know Ginny will be home. I don’t think she ever leaves her room.”

“Then to Ginny it is,” Liz pronounced as she took the hand Max offered and followed behind him. While they made their way back downstairs, Liz brought up an earlier conversation she had had with her best friend. “Maria told me that Michael decided he wanted you to try to find out more about his donor. Did he have a chance to talk to you about it?”

“Yes, he did ask me at the party. And I think it will be much easier for me to talk to Ginny about this with you by my side. I do not want to ask her any questions that may be too personal.”

“Well I’m glad I have a chance to meet to her. I’m sure you would have done just fine on your own, though.” Stopping outside the elderly woman’s door, she turned to face him. Giving him a quick peck on the cheek, she said, “In case I haven’t said it in words, I just wanted to let you know that I am very proud of how well you did last night and this morning.”

“Thank you, my Beauty.”

“And I’m extra proud that you didn’t stop at meeting four new people. See, six wasn’t as bad as you thought it would be, now was it?”

“No, it was not. After the first few times, it got easier,” he admitted. “However, there is one little problem,” he added with a devilish glint in his eyes.

“What’s that?” she questioned, her brows raised curiously.

Wrapping his arm around her waist he bent down to whisper in her ear, the gentle brush of his lips creating a tantalizing wave of heat that circulated throughout her entire body before settling in the places she desired him most. “Since I surpassed our agreed-upon number by half, I believe I deserve much more positive reinforcement than just a little kiss.” He pressed his hardness into her to emphasize his point. “Don’t you agree, my mate?”

“Oh, most definitely,” she said with a seductive grin, leaning her own body into his. “Of course, you can’t forget the concept of delayed gratification. Right now we’re going to knock on this door and visit with your friend Ginny. Your reward will just have to wait.” Before he could convince her otherwise she spun around and knocked on Ginny’s door.

Max gave a frustrated moan before he said with resignation, “Her door is usually unlocked. Try the handle.”

Liz turned the knob and sure enough she was able to open the door. Max took the lead and softly called out, “Ginny?”

“Patrick, is that you?” a frail voice responded.

“No, Ginny. It’s Max.”

“Why of course, Max. Come in, please.”

Max took Liz’s hand and directed her inside. She glanced around at the room’s sparse furnishings until her eyes settled on the petite white-haired woman in the rocking chair. Her eyes were closed, a gentle smile on her face as she listened to ‘Moonlight Serenade’ coming from the small radio next to her. As the song ended, she opened her eyes to find that her young friend was not alone.

“Oh my, where are my manners? I didn’t realize you had a guest with you,” the elderly woman chided, immediately turning her radio off. Her smile returned as she held out her hand. “This must be your Liz. My eyes may not see as well as they used to, but I can still see well enough to understand why you are so smitten with her.”

‘Smitten?’ he silently questioned Liz.

‘She’s saying she can understand why you like me so much.’ Liz replied to him as she accepted Ginny’s proffered hand. “I can say the same for you, Mrs. Lee…”

“Oh please, dear, I think we can dismiss with the formalities. Call me Ginny.”

“Ginny it is,” Liz corrected. “Max has told me quite a bit about you. I’m glad to finally meet you in person.”

“The feeling is mutual, my dear,” she complimented as she placed her other hand on top of Liz’s. Giving it a quick squeeze before releasing it, she inquired, “So what did you two young people do to usher in this new millennium?”

“We celebrated with our friends,” Max volunteered as he pulled up a chair and sat next to Ginny, silently offering his lap for Liz to sit in. Wanting to focus on the upcoming conversation, Liz quietly refused with a sly smile and a slight shake of her head, opting instead to wander the room.

“That must have been quite enjoyable. Although when my husband was alive, we preferred to spend New Year’s alone,” Ginny reminisced. “We would dance the entire night away, just the two of us. On our fiftieth wedding anniversary he vowed that if we were both still around to see the new millennium we would spend it dancing atop the Empire State Building.”

“I’m sorry that you didn’t make it there,” Liz consoled.

“For whatever reason it was not in the good Lord’s plans,” the elderly woman acquiesced. “I had my Bryant for fifty-seven glorious years, so I cannot be overly disappointed that he is not here with me now. Turning her head towards Max’s voice, she advised, “Learn a lesson from an old lady…make the most of every day you two have together, for the end always comes too soon.”

“We’ll remember that,” the couple said in unison, causing Ginny’s mouth to form into a knowing smile. These two were destined for each other.

Trying to move the discussion to what this woman knew of Michael’s donor, Liz questioned, “Have you lived in Roswell all of your life, Ginny?”

“Yes, ma’am. As a matter of fact, I am the third generation of Dupree’s born in Roswell, although strictly speaking I was the first one in my family to be born in the state of New Mexico.”

Liz slowly made her way to the wall where Max had told her the now infamous picture was mounted. Looking over several, she let out a startled gasp as she finally spotted the one she was after. In the center of the photo Michael’s face was staring back at her from across the ages. He, as well as several other young men, was dressed in the uniform of the Confederate forces, his arm around a small boy who looked very much like him. “So is this one of your relatives in the uniform?” Liz asked, attempting to be casual.

Ginny smiled thoughtfully. Mother Nature may have stolen most of her sight, but she still had the wherewithal to know exactly which picture her young gentleman friend’s girl was regarding. “The little boy is my great-granddaddy, Thomas Dupree. The young man holding him is his older brother Charles. That photo was taken in 1863, right before all those young men from the town left to fight in the war. The first battle they were in happened to be at Gettysburg. Out of all of those boys, Charles was the only one who made it out alive. He went on to fight in the Battle of the Wilderness, and spent almost eight months in Spotsylvania.”

“Charles was the only one who survived? Didn’t your great-grandfather survive also, or you would not be here?” Max inquired.

“Well, yes. Fortunately Thomas was only nine years old and was too young to fight in the war. If it had not ended when it did, he more than likely would have gone as well.”

“How old was your great-great uncle then?” Liz questioned.

“Let’s see…1863…1847…Uncle Charles must have been fifteen or sixteen. His birthday was in October, and I think that was taken in April or so…I’d say fifteen.”

“They seemed like they were close to each other,” Liz observed as she carefully studied the picture.

“Yes, my great-granddaddy just adored Charles. He wanted to be just like him, and the two of them were inseparable. After the war ended Charles couldn’t stand seeing all the destruction around him, all the reminders of the friends he had lost. He needed to get a fresh start, so he headed off to Texas. Well of course my great-granddaddy just had to go with him. From what I understand their mother had a terrible fit, but in the end there was no stopping them.”

“If the went to Texas, how did they end up in Roswell?” Max asked, carefully watching the emotions playing across the stately woman’s features.

“It just so happened that about the time they got to Texas, John Chisum was preparing for his first cattle drive into New Mexico. They decided to sign up and sure enough they ended up in Roswell…actually they were part of the group that originally settled the town around 1869.”

“Didn’t it start out as a trading post?” Liz recalled from her history class.

“That’s right. My great-granddaddy loved meeting all the people who passed through here. Eventually he met Ada Mae Bouchet and they settled down together. Not long after that, in July of 1874, my granddaddy was born.”

“What about Charles? Did he have a family?” Max asked, wondering how they would be related to Michael.

“Sadly, no. I think the war affected him more than he was ever willing to admit, at least to me anyway. While my great-granddaddy stayed in Roswell, Uncle Charles continued driving cattle with Chisum, going all over New Mexico, Wyoming, and Colorado. He could never stay in one place very long…it’s like he needed to keep moving or his demons would catch up to him. All that changed once my great-granddaddy passed on. Charles came back to Roswell to care for Ada Mae and help her raise my granddaddy. He always treated them as if they were his own.”

“How old was your great-grandfather when he passed away?” Liz asked in confusion.

“He was quite young, at least by today’s standards…he stepped in the middle of an argument between two men at the trading post and ended up being shot dead. He was only twenty-four.”

“How terrible that must have been. I can’t imagine not being able to see your own child grow up,” Liz commented.

“It nearly broke Charles’ heart when he got the news. Although he never said it directly, I think Uncle Charles felt guilty for not settling here when Thomas did…like he could have prevented the shooting somehow. He more than made up for it, though. My granddaddy was barely three when this happened, so Uncle Charlie was the only father my granddaddy ever really knew.”

Although she already knew the answer, Liz asked anyway, “From the way you talk, it sounds like Charles lived long enough for you to know him personally.”

Ginny nodded her head, “He was able to outlive both my granddaddy and my daddy. I think a combination of good stock and a lot of luck allowed him to have such a long life.”

“How old was he when he finally passed away?” Max queried.

“One hundred and two. And I’d say for the first one hundred of those years he was as sharp as a tack. It wasn’t until all that alien nonsense happened that he began to slip,” Ginny said with a hint of bitterness in her voice.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 21-Jun-2002 2:29:23 AM ]
posted on 21-Jun-2002 2:26:19 AM by SansuCry
Ch. 59 continued

Liz perked up at the mention of the aliens. “Alien nonsense? Do you mean the crash that supposedly happened in 1947?”

“That’s the one. The government told everyone it was just a weather balloon, but there was no way to stop the naysayers from putting all those crazy notions about aliens and space ships and cover-ups into people’s heads.”

“What did that have to do with Charles?” Max asked cautiously.

“Well, I used to go and visit Uncle Charlie at least once a week out at the Sandview Nursing Home where he lived.”

“Sandview? I’ve never heard of it,” Liz commented.

“Oh, it used to be on the outskirts of town, but it hasn’t been there in quite some time. It was torn down in the early sixties to make way for one of those open-air shopping malls that were all the rage.”

Moving the conversation back to the aliens, Max questioned, “So Charles was one hundred when the ship crashed?”

“Supposedly crashed,” Liz corrected.

“That’s correct. As I was saying I would visit him all the time. My aunt and a few of my brothers would also go and visit with him, but I was the one who saw him the most. A few weeks after this rumored crash happened, Uncle Charlie started telling me a story about one of the young ladies who worked at the nursing home. He swore up and down that he had seen her turn from a nurse into a little green alien, complete with big black eyes. Claims she even took some blood from him. I did my best to placate him, but when the other relatives caught wind of this, they figured he had finally lost his mind. He was a very old man after all, so it wouldn’t have been unusual for him to be a little on the crazy side.”

“But you believed him?” Liz asked, trying to sound surprised without coming off as being judgmental.

“I myself thought the whole sighting story was nothing but a bunch of nonsense invented by the town leaders to revive the ailing economy, so it wasn’t so much that I believed him. After all, he could never even point out which girl he had been talking about, but I could tell that he believed he had seen an alien. Regrettably he became so consumed with this aliens hogwash that the rest of my family tired of hearing it. Their visits to him became fewer and fewer until eventually they refused to go visit with him at all.”

“What about you? Did you stop seeing him?” Max asked curiously.

“I never stopped visiting him. For his sake I continued to see him and listened when no one else would. He passed on a couple of years later, although I am still uncertain whether it was due to his old age or his despondency over everyone thinking he was senile when he knew he wasn’t.”

“Did you think he was senile?”

The sadness in her face was apparent. “That was the most unsettling part of the entire situation. Even to his dying day, he still appeared to have all his senses about him, except when it came to this one issue. I can only wonder what would have happened if he had never heard any of that rubbish about alien sightings.” Her eyes raising to give Max a piercing look, Ginny’s cheeks faintly blushed, “Oh dear, I am so sorry for monopolizing the conversation. I’m sure the last thing you two want to hear about is some long-gone relative of mine who was foolish enough to believe in aliens.”

“You might be surprised by what interests us, Ginny,” Liz replied. Certain that any further discussion of Charles would only bring more sadness, Liz perused some of the other photos on the wall. “You have quite a few pictures, here. Are any of these your children?”

“No, dear. I am afraid that Mr. Lee and I were not blessed with any children. Those are all our nieces and nephews, although now they are grown up and have children of their own.”

“If you don’t mind my asking, who is Patrick? Is he a relative?” Max slowly questioned.

“No, I am not related to Patrick, although I would be proud to have such a thoughtful young man in my family. Every day…or is it every other day…he brings me groceries and prepared meals through the Senior Supper program. I just can’t take care of myself the way I used to, but at least he sees to it that I am well-fed.”

“Then I take it that none of you nieces or nephews live close by?” Liz asked.

“Unlike my family, they decided that Roswell was too small of a town for them so now they are scattered all about the country. The closest one is my niece Caroline who lives in Tucson. She and her husband come to see me every couple of years, but I know she and her children have a busy life. They don’t have a lot of time to spend with their old Aunt Ginny. Just like you two. You get on out of here and go find yourselves some fun. You have better things to do than baby-sit an old lady.”

“We don’t consider it baby-sitting at all, Ginny. As far as your family, well, they’re the ones missing out,” Liz said as she knelt down besides the elderly woman. “I used to love spending time with my Grandma Claudia. Some of the most important lessons I’ve learned in my life came from her.” Taking Ginny’s hand, she continued. “You remind me of her. If you don’t mind, I would like to come back again and get to know you better. You have so many interesting photos around here, and I’m sure if they’re anything like Grandma Claudia’s, there’s a story behind each and every one of them. I’d love to hear them.”

Ginny reached out and took Liz’s chin in her hand. “Sweet child, you’ve made my day. I would be delighted to have you visit me again. Your Max here is a very lucky young man to have such a special girl.”

“And I’m just as lucky to have him,” Liz added.

“That you are. He seems to be quite a gentleman. They don’t make many like him nowadays,” she complimented, removing her hand from Liz’s face to stifle a yawn. “If you would be so kind, could you assist me to my bed. I believe it is past the time for my afternoon nap.”

Max hurried to Ginny’s side and held out his arm for her to pull herself up with, his other arm assisting her with her slow ascent to a standing position. She held onto him tightly as she shuffled her way over to the bed, gingerly lowering herself to the side just as Liz pulled the covers back. Kicking off her slippers, she sighed, “Please forgive me for not walking you to the door. I know it is poor manners, but I just don’t seem to have the energy I used to have.”

Max waited until Ginny laid down before covering her with the sheets and comforter. He gave her a gentle kiss on the forehead as he said quietly, “Don’t you worry about us, Ginny. You just get some rest. We’ll come back another time to resume our conversation.”

All Liz Parker could do was stare through her tears at the scene playing out before her and say a prayer of thanks for the man who had chosen her as his mate.

“Ginny is very nice,” Liz quietly said as Max shut the woman’s door behind him. “Thank you for bringing me to meet her.”

“I think she really likes you, Liz,” Max observed. “And I think it will do her good to have regular visitors. Except for Christmas, I haven’t heard of or seen anyone spending time with her, not even this Patrick she spoke of.”

“It’s too bad that her family can’t visit her more often. It seems like she is ending up just like Charles did. It was sad to hear how everyone abandoned him…especially since we know he was right all along. But it surprised me that Vilandra would have been careless enough to shapeshift in front of him.”

Max thought a moment before responding. “I would guess that shapeshifting takes up a lot of energy. If he only saw her do it once, and it was the day that she took his blood for the genetic material, then it is likely that she was already weakening. Perhaps she was just too weak to hold her human form for any prolonged length of time.”

“You’re probably right,” Liz said as she grabbed his hand, tugging him towards his room. “Although at the moment, the only human form I’m worried about holding is yours.” Looking at her watch, she declared, “Alex and Isabelle are going to be here to pick me up in about an hour and a half, so we’d better make the most of our time. I have to work all day tomorrow and school starts on Monday, so this may be our last chance to be together for a few days.”

Scooping Liz up in his arm, Max nuzzled her neck as he whispered, “So what are we waiting for?” Reading his mind, Liz reached into his jean pocket to retrieve his room key, her hand doing a little extra wandering along the way. Just as she found the key, a noise from above startled them apart.

“Hey Max. Can you come up and read to me?” Cambell’s small voice called out.

The couple exchanged worried looks, Liz reprimanding herself for being so careless for the second time that day. Fortunately it was doubtful that the little boy had heard their conversation and even if he had, he would have no idea what they had been discussing.

Max stepped out from in front of his door to look up at Cambell leaning over the railing at the same time D.J. came running from their room yelling, “Cambell, get back in here before you get me in trouble!” He went to yank on the younger boy’s arm when Cambell suddenly cowered, afraid of his brother’s wrath.

“D.J., stop,” Max ordered. The older boy froze and looked up to see Max staring back at him. “I don’t think you need to be so rough with your brother, do you?”

“But he keeps coming out here, and I’m sick of yellin’ at him,” D.J. pouted.

“Cambell, why aren’t you staying inside like you’re supposed to?” Max asked the little boy, who finally stood back up when he realized Max had saved him from impending D.J. doom.

“’Cuz I’m really bored in there. Momma’s been gone all day and D.J. keeps actin’ like he’s the boss of me.”

So involved with the scene in front of him, Max jumped when Liz’s voice echoed in his mind, ‘Max, why are those kids alone again?’

‘Their mother has to work. What else is she supposed to do with them? If they stay in their room like they are told to do, then they should be safe while she is gone. Usually Juanita or I am around to keep an eye on them.’

‘Well, you yourself said that Juanita isn’t here today, and you were about to…be…unavailable. Max, it is never safe to leave children alone. There are so many things that could happen to them. We can’t just leave them up there.’

‘What do you want me to do?’

‘I would say bring them down here to your room, but I don’t want their mother to have another reason to attack you.’

‘Their mother won’t be a problem. She apologized to me, and I now understand why she reacted so strongly. She trusts me with the boys now.’

Liz was surprised that Max hadn’t mentioned anything about this to her earlier. She wanted to ask him about it, but she knew that now was not the time. Knowing her response would kill any chance of making love to Max one last time, she conceded with a heavy sigh, ‘I guess it’s settled then. Bring them down here, but leave a note so their mother knows where they are.’

He gave her a grateful look before sprinting for the stairs. She opened the door to Max’s room and sat down on the bed, waiting for the trio to arrive. After a few minutes Max walked in with two suddenly shy boys clinging to the back of his shirt. “Guys, this is my friend, Liz. She’s very nice, so she won’t hurt you. Can you say hello to her?”

Liz couldn’t help but grin at the mumbled greetings she received. Trying to reassure them, she spoke in a lighthearted voice, “So this is the Cambell and D.J. I’ve heard so much about. I think you’re right Max. They do look like a couple of monkeys.”

“I’m not a monkey! I’m a boy,” a little voice protested with a giggle as Cambell’s head poked out from behind Max.

Liz widened her eyes in mock surprise and brought her hands to her face in a Home Alone gesture. “Oh my goodness…the monkey can talk! What a miracle!”

Being called a monkey for a second time proved too much for the younger brother, and he stomped up to Liz with all the authority a five-year-old could muster. Commandingly thrusting his hands on his hips, he said in his most threatening voice, “I am NOT a monkey.”

Stifling the laugh that was welling up inside her, Liz calmly offered her hand to the boy and said with a straight face, “I’m very pleased to meet you, Not A Monkey. My name is Liz.”

Cambell rolled his eyes and let out a growl of frustration. Throwing up his hands he turned to his older friend. “Max, tell her my name is not Not A Monkey.”

“She knows what your name is,” Max teased. “She just wanted to make sure you could really talk, since she couldn’t hear you a minute ago. Now why don’t we try this again.” Uncurling D.J.’s hand from his shirt, he brought the older boy to stand next to his brother, who was still giving Liz an aggravated look. “Pay attention, you two. This is the proper way to say hello to a lady.”

Max bent over and took Liz’s still outreached hand in his own, bringing it up to his mouth. Looking deeply into her dark eyes, he placed a soft kiss on the back of her hand as his love-filled voice spoke, “Good afternoon, Miss Elizabeth. I am glad to make your acquaintance.” Looking over at the boys, Max focused on D.J. “Your turn.”

“Ewwww. I don’t want to kiss a girl,” D.J. protested.

“What’s an uh…uh…quaint ants?” Cambell questioned.

The teens looked at each other and broke into a hearty laugh. “It’s another word for friend, Cambell,” Liz explained. “And don’t worry, D.J. I won’t make you kiss me,” she said with a wink. “But there is something I want you to do.”

“What?” the older boy hesitantly asked.

Liz held up her finger to indicate that she wanted him to wait. All three males watched with interest as she went over to Max’s dresser and began rummaging through the drawers. A worried frown dampened her enthusiasm when she finished searching the fourth drawer and had still come up empty. With only two more drawers to go, she began talking to herself, “I know I put it in here. Which one was it?” A smile instantly crossed her face as she found what she had been looking for in the last drawer on the bottom. “Here it is,” she declared as she pulled out an object wrapped in a brown paper bag. She tucked her hair behind her ear as she approached three sets of curious eyes. Holding up the bag, she began by pointing to D.J. “I want you…to help him,” she continued as she moved her finger to rest on Max, “use this!” With one swift motion, she removed the bag to reveal the remote-controlled car she had bought almost a month earlier. The room was quickly filled with enthusiastic and delighted cheers, making it difficult for Liz to decipher which one of the three was most excited about her surprise.

She handed the box to Max, the boys swarming around him as soon as he sat on the floor to open their new toy. Cambell attempted to read the side of the box aloud as Max worked on removing the dozen or so twist ties that attached the car and controller to the inside cardboard. D.J. picked up the booklet of directions, quickly flipping through it to glean for the most important parts.

Instead of being hurt that she had been so readily forgotten, Liz watched on in silent amazement as the love of her life completely dropped his always serious temperament in exchange for a childish abandon she was certain he had never experienced before. She continued to stay out of the limelight as the three friends took the car for a test drive in the parking lot, content to rest in the chair she had brought out with her. She laughed along with them as the car flipped upside down after a failed attempt at jumping a pothole, and leapt from the chair with concern when the vehicle smashed head on into a parking bumper.

The boys only stopped paying attention to the car long enough to greet their mother when she arrived home, Cambell proudly imitating the introduction Max had taught them. Kelly had a brief conversation with Max before disappearing upstairs to change out of her work clothes, and when she returned she introduced herself to Liz and thanked her for taking care of the boys. She told Liz what a great job Max had been doing of teaching the boys to read, and she had just suggested that he should try to find a career where he could work with children when Isabelle and Alex pulled up in the Jeep. Liz said her good-byes to her new friends before turning her attention to her mate.

The couple held each other for several minutes, both of them realizing how difficult the next few days would be until they could be together again. Liz silently assured Max that she was not upset with him for spending their alone time with the boys, but rather that she had enjoyed watching him have fun. They gave each other a lingering yet chaste kiss before Max helped Liz into the Jeep, his gaze not leaving her until the vehicle had disappeared from view.

From behind the closed curtain, a set of weary eyes looked on with heartbreaking jealousy.

Across the parking lot, a second set of eyes watched the apartment where that do-gooder from the Senior Supper program brought food every other day at precisely 11 a.m. He had been watching the room long enough to know that the old man or lady who lived there would be alone any other time of the day. Soon it would be time to pay a visit and collect whatever funds may be available for the taking.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 21-Jun-2002 2:30:53 AM ]
posted on 30-Jun-2002 12:02:30 AM by SansuCry
Well, here we are at Ch. 60. This is an extremely long part but I couldn’t break it up or it would have messed up the flow too much. (I will post it in two or three sections) I worked really hard to get this just right, so feedback would be greatly appreciated. For you lurkers, I’ll make it very easy for you. After you are done reading the chapter, just answer the following question, even if it is only one word: This part was_________.

As a side note, when I write chararcters I like to use vague descriptions. That way your mind “fills in the blanks” by using your own experiences with people, making the charater more real to you. So Taffy’s picture of Juanita may be vastly different from say, Eccentric One’s or 2crzy4roswell’s. I also did this type of description for the commitment symbol. However, my 74 yr-old-mother was nice enough to draw a commitment symbol for me, and I think it is so pretty that I have to share it with you. Here is the link:

(A HUGE, ENORMOUS thanks goes to Faith for setting this up for me, since I’m pretty much illiterate when it comes to web pages.)

And one last thing: My fanfic plug of the week is Soft Core by Smoo. It is so funny....if you aren't reading it, you should be.

Onto Ch. 60...which by the way, is very heavy on the NC-17 rating.

Chapter 60 (NC-17)

Liz usually hated working Sunday mornings. Not only were they one of the busiest times of the week, but the crowd consisted mainly of older people who seemed much less forgiving than teens when an order wasn’t right. Of course they tended to tip better, so in the end it evened out. She decided that if she had to be separated from Max, she would rather keep busy anyway…it made it much easier to not think about how much she missed him. As a matter of fact she had been so busy that she couldn’t believe it was already 10 a.m.

“Liz, what are you doing?” Maria hissed in her ear.

“What do you mean?” Liz frowned.

“You just gave Mrs. Osworth the wrong order.”

“Oops,” Liz giggled, finding her mistake quite humorous. “I guess I better go fix it, huh?”

“Yeah, like yesterday,” Maria answered, knowing the middle-aged widow was notorious for her lack of patience.

Liz went back to the table and picked up the several plates of food she had just set down, “Sorry about royally screwing up your order. I’ll be back with the right stuff in a minute.” She left the table before Mrs. Osworth had a chance to reprimand her for her poor choice of words. Taking her tray back to the pick up window, she yelled, “Jose! Buddy boy! Where’s Mrs. Osworth’s order?… Wheat toast, not white. Eggs, over easy…or is it scrambled? And a short stack. No, wait…I meant a Belgian waffle. Well, you know what it is…she orders the same thing every week.”

From across the room, Maria gaped at her best friend. She excused herself from her customer and made her way over to where Liz was waiting for the cook to respond. Putting her hand on Liz’s arm, she quietly demanded, “Liz, keep it down. What is wrong with you?”

Not even attempting to be discrete, Liz replied indignantly, “There’s nothing wrong with me, ‘ria. Jose’s the one who totally screwed up Mrs. Osworth’s order. I’m just trying to get her the right food before she has a fit.”

“Liz, be quiet,” Maria chided again. Looking at the full tray of food she said, “Let me see your order pad.”

Liz tossed it towards Maria, bursting out laughing when it flew out of her hand and landed on the floor on the other side of the counter. Maria gave her an irritated glare as she went to retrieve it. She picked it up and flipped through the pages until she found the order that Liz had on her tray. “This is for table 5, Liz.”

“Well, why did Mrs. Osworth move to table 5? She never sits at table 5,” Liz whined.

Maria’s patience was growing thinner by the minute. “Liz, I don’t know what kind of game you’re playing, but you’ve gotta stop. You’re Dad’s gonna be back soon and you’re pisssing off the customers. Now take this to table 5 before it gets cold.”

“But ‘ria, this isn’t Mrs. Osworth’s food. She’s gonna get all pissed at me.”

“Liz, listen to me carefully. Mrs. Osworth is not at table 5. See that family over there. That is table 5.”

Liz’s eyes widened with realization, “Oh, this food goes over to them.” Looking at Maria, she said seriously, “Maria would you please stop talking to me so I can get my work done? I have to get this order to table 5 and take Mrs. Osworth her food before she throws a fit.”

Maria threw her hands up in frustration and stalked away. However, for the next twenty minutes she kept a careful eye on Liz’s behavior. She watched as her friend would make one glaring mistake after another then burst into fits of giggles and laughter as each one was revealed. Maria was at a loss as to what she should do. Liz insisted that there was nothing wrong with her, but she was acting far from normal. Once Maria suspected where she had seen that type of behavior before, she decided to drag her friend to the back and demand an explanation. Before she had the chance though, the front doors of the Crashdown burst open and Max strode purposefully into the restaurant. Maria had to look twice to make sure her eyes weren’t deceiving her. She had never seen him look so…confident. “Max, I am so glad you’re here…”

Ignoring all the stares his entrance had elicited, Max’s eyes rested on the petite, dark-haired girl who was his entire world. Winding through the tables to get to her, he immediately took her in his arms and gave her a searing kiss, which she eagerly returned. His hand had just moved down to caress her behind when Maria’s hand stopped him.

“What is with you two? You’re in the middle of a restaurant for God’s sake. If you’re going to attack each other, at least get a room,” Maria growled as she realized Max was too distracted to be of any help.

Max beamed at her, “Got one already.” Tugging on Liz’s hand, he added, “C’mon Beauty, let’s go.”

“Go where?” Liz asked, happily dazed.

“Back to my room,” he said suggestively.

“No, Max. I can’t. I have to work,” Liz giggled as she rolled her eyes.

“Your work will just have to wait,” he said as though it were the obvious solution.

“But I have a restaurant full of people to take care of. They need me here,” she said with a pout.

“And I need you in my bed,” he grinned.

“OK. Way too much information there, Max,” Maria shuddered as she grabbed Liz’s other hand, pulling her friend back towards the pick up window. “As much as Juliet here would love to go with you, there is no way I am going to be stuck here alone. So run along now Romeo.”

Max’s voice was firm but non-threatening. “I am not leaving here without Lizzie.” Possessively wrapping his arm around her waist, he continued. “She is my mate, and right now there is nothing or no one that can stop me from taking her,” he charged, his eyes and voice emphasizing the double meaning of his words.

Liz had attempted several times to clear the fog that had settled in her head, but as much as she tried she couldn’t quite focus her attention on what was going on around her. She knew Maria was getting mad at her, yet all she could do was feel bad that her best friend hadn’t been able to see the humor in the various things that had gone wrong that morning. The minute Max showed up she could tell there was something different about him, but the blatantly lustful thoughts overwhelming their connection were too distracting for her to be worried about what it might be. Despite her protests to Max that she had customers to care for, she could feel her body instantly begin to burn at the thought of running off to be with him.

“Well, I think Liz has something to say about that. Don’t you Liz?” Maria prompted, praying that Liz’s currently limited common sense hadn’t disappeared completely.

“What? Oh, yeah. I really can’t leave, Max,” she said as she tried to keep a straight face.

“Lizzie, I told you that no one is going to stop me. That includes you,” he stressed with another heated kiss.

Maria quipped sarcastically, “What are you going to do? It’s not like you can throw her over your shoulder and carry her out of here against her will.”

Max gave Maria another radiant smile, “Hey. I didn’t think of that. Thanks for the idea.” With that he bent down and in one swift motion picked Liz up and tossed her over his shoulder, strategically holding down the skirt of her uniform to avoid exposing to anyone else what was only his for the viewing.

As he stalked toward the door, Maria and a restaurant full of people gawked while Liz made a feeble attempt to struggle out of his grasp. Realizing that there was no escape, Liz’s muffled voice called out, “I’m sorry ‘ria. I’ll make this up to you big time. I promise.”

Too shocked by what was happening and helpless to prevent it, all Maria could manage to say was, “What about your Dad. What am I supposed to tell him?”

Raising her head to look at her best friend, Liz chuckled. “Tell him I got an offer I couldn’t refuse, and I’ll be back as soon as I can,” she emphasized with a mischievous grin as she groped the corresponding parts of Max’s body. The front doors slammed shut behind them and Maria was left with a restaurant full of patrons who were just as irritated and perplexed by what they had witnessed as she.

“Max, you can put me down now,” Liz said as she looked up to see the Crashdown disappearing from sight.

“Oh no, Beauty. I’m not taking the chance that you might run away from me.” Keeping his one hand firmly planted on her behind he ran the other one up and down the backs of her thighs, moving higher and higher until he snuck under her uniform to tease her through the silken material of her panties. “Besides, I’m rather enjoying having you within reach,” he laughed.

Shifting her legs to allow him greater access, Liz complained nonetheless, “Max, don’t! We’re out in public.”

“So?” he asked as his finger stroked under the piece of material that hid her most intimate part from him. He smiled with devilish pride as his digit reached its mark, as evidenced by Liz’s gasp.

“Someone might see,” she replied, the words little more than a moan.

Looking around the empty street, he assured her, “Trust me, they won’t.” Silently he added, ‘And if they do, I’ll just tell them the truth.’

‘The truth?’ she asked through their connection, her concentration wavering with each tender thrust of his finger into her aroused core.

‘I’m making you nice and wet for me so I can taste your sweetness until I’ve had my fill.’

Liz knew she should be embarrassed by his explicit ministrations, but instead she found the idea of being caught in the act enticingly erotic. Although the whole idea seemed very out of character for her, at the moment she had no desire to analyze the situation further. She only wanted to relish the pleasure that was beginning to consume her entire body.

Within a few minutes the familiar cracked asphalt of the motel’s parking lot came into view before her, and Max’s abrupt stop signaled their arrival at his room. Gently removing his finger from inside her, he lowered her to stand on the ground in front of him. Eyes meeting in a smoldering gaze, he brought his hand up to his face and proceeded to cleanse her juices from his finger, his voice in her mind echoing how he desperately needed to taste more of her.

Unlike the previous day, she wasted no time finding the room key in his jean pocket, her body too stimulated to allow her the opportunity to tease him. If they weren’t careful she would end up begging him to take her where they stood. She quickly opened the door and before she knew it, she was in the middle of the room with Max crouched before her. He wrapped his hand around her calf and guided her foot to rest on his knee. Untying her shoe, he slipped it off and then removed her sock, his fingertips constantly lingering on her skin. He switched his position on the floor and repeated his actions with her other foot, his hand eagerly wandering over her leg as though it had a mind of its own. His mouth soon followed the path his hand had created, and Liz clutched his shoulder to brace herself for his sensual onslaught.

Expecting to be treated to his usual manner of slow, tender loving Liz yelped as he tossed her back over his shoulder to take her to the bed. Tossing her down in the middle of it, he pushed her uniform up past her hips and ripped her panties from her body, throwing the torn material over his shoulder before he brought his mouth close to her heat. Shocked by the action her eyes met his, but the brazen wildness she saw in them instantly paralyzed any thought of protest she might have had.

‘My Beauty, do you know what 69 is?’ his passion-laden voice mutely asked as his hands stroked the insides of her thighs, silently commanding her to open up to him.

Remembering the countless illustrations from Amy DeLuca’s Joy of Sex book, a book that just a few short years ago she and Maria would sneak peeks at and wonder why anyone would want to do those things, she managed to form the word ‘yes’ as she spread her knees wide and watched him settle his shoulder between them. Struggling to keep her wits about her, she had to ask, ‘Do you know what it is?’

Max’s memory of the two of them orally pleasuring each other in this very bed flashed through her mind. ‘I didn’t know what it was called then, but I do now,’ he cryptically replied, his tongue reaching out to seductively lap at her wetness to reinforce his response.

‘But how…’ she moaned, too aroused to really care what the answer was.

‘I’ll tell you later. The important thing is for you to know that you should not want 69.’

A tinge of embarrassment shot through her, but she could not avert her eyes from his scrutinizing stare. Was he telling her he did not want to do that with her again? She thought for sure that he had enjoyed it as much as she had. Needing to know, she tentatively questioned, ‘I shouldn’t?’

‘No,’ he silently answered as he brushed his tongue against her clit, causing a shiver of desire to pulse through her. ‘You should want 77 instead.’

She couldn’t remember a position in Mrs. DeLuca’s book that went by the name 77. ‘Why should I want 77?’

Amusement momentarily flickered in his eyes before being replaced by unadulterated lust. Looping his arms under her knees, he rested his hands on her dark curls, just below the bunched up skirt of her uniform. “Because, my Beauty, you will get 8 more.”

It took a few seconds for the joke to register in Liz’s mind. Her laughter died in her throat as Max took the punchline to heart and buried his face in her heat, a feral growl echoing in the silent room. Her body lurched in response, every fiber of her being instantly focused on the spot where his mouth was rapidly bringing her to the edge of ecstasy. She closed her eyes and threaded her fingers through his hair, silently pleading for him to give her the release she so desperately craved.

As he sensed her approaching climax Max pulled away, wrenching his head from her tightening grasp. Liz fluttered her eyes open at the loss, letting out the tense breath she had instinctively been holding in anticipation of her orgasm.

“Patience, my mate. It’s much too soon for this to be over.” Gently biting the inside of her thigh, he silently added, ‘Remember I have plans for you.’

“And those plans involve tormenting me?” she asked in frustration.

“They involve giving you what you want when I want you to have it, and not a minute sooner.”

He turned to her other leg and nipped it more severely than the first one, then proceeded to soothe the spot with his tongue.

“I’m going to take my time eating you…”

He slowly dragged his tongue up the entire length of her slit...

“…touching you…”

He rubbed his thumb over her clit.

“…f*cking you…”

He thrust his tongue deep inside her.

“…and I won’t let you come until you are screaming my name loud enough for everyone in this building to hear you.”

Liz moaned at the sensual torture he was subjecting her to. For a brief moment she wondered what had prompted him to become so aggressive, but once again she didn’t really care. All she knew was that it was exciting her beyond belief to hear him describe what he was going to do to her. The anticipation alone was enough to saturate her with the fluid that he had wanted more of. Noticing that her uniform was dangerously close to being stained by that same fluid, she lifted the hem and began unbuttoning the dress. Max’s hands suddenly stilled her movements, as he silently ordered her to leave it on. She dropped the material and let her hands fall to her sides.

Nuzzling her damp folds, he took a deep breath. ‘I love your scent.’

“Say the words,” she quietly demanded.

‘What?’ he asked, looking up to her. Her request confused him.

“Say the words out loud. I want to hear you say the words,” she begged shamelessly.

His mouth quickly formed into a knowing grin. His words…telling her what he wanted…was exciting her. Granting her request, his husky voice filled the room. “I’ve known your scent since the first time I saw you. When you finally held me in your arms, I didn’t think there could be anything better than breathing you in. Then that night in the shower…as I touched you your scent grew stronger, and I realized that you were responding to me. I was so close to sampling your sweetness...but then you stopped me, and I thought I would go crazy with this desire to taste you.” Lost in the memory, he lightly traced his tongue over her outer lips. Hearing her moan brought him back to the moment, and he continued, “Do you remember when I came to the restaurant after Maria cut my hair? By then I could not wait any longer to find out what you tasted like. If she hadn’t sent us upstairs, I would have laid you down on the table in front of me and eaten you right there, with everyone watching.”

“So you want me to leave the uniform on…” she deduced.

“…just for a little while, so I can imagine,” he pleaded.

She didn’t know what had happened to make both of them lose the last of their inhibitions, but after experiencing how arousing this newly found freedom could be, she wasn’t about to complain. Smiling seductively she placed her hands behind her head and said the words that made his manhood harden painfully. “I’m all yours. Do with me what you want.”

His eyes, blackened with unrestrained passion, silently thanked her before he returned his mouth to her waiting heat. He hungrily devoured her sweet nectar, his customary tenderness thrown aside for the opportunity to live out his deepest fantasies with her. Amazingly she seemed to be enjoying his coarse treatment as much as he was, the glistening dew collecting on his face an obvious indicator of how much pleasure he was bringing her.

She closed her eyes tightly as she relished Max’s lascivious assault, and to her surprise she no longer felt the softness of his bed beneath her. Through the lust-induced haze he was generating, she could faintly make out her surroundings. She was laying on a hard surface, her knuckles white as she grasped the edges tightly. Focusing on the fixture above her, her eyes drifted to the familiar copper ceiling of the Crashdown. Raising up on her elbows, she glanced around quickly until her eyes settled on her mate’s dark head nestled between her legs. Her bare feet were resting comfortably on his shoulders as his hands gripped her hips, intimately holding her against his probing mouth. Her aroused scent permeated the air as his muffled grunts mixed with the wet sounds of carnal exploration. He masterfully stroked his tongue against her lips, only stopping to occasionally suckle her increasingly sensitive clit. Her whimpers of delight reverberated in the otherwise empty restaurant, spurring him to intensify his hedonistic attack.

This was so much better than he ever could have thought, her active participation in his already vivid imaginings the key to the overwhelming desire coursing through him. It was one thing to dream of having her this way but to actually be holding her, consuming the tangible evidence of his fantasy’s effect on her, was beyond any words he could think of. Instead he choose to only relay the indescribable emotions stirred by her willingness to appease him. He felt her escalating towards her release as the full weight of his love and gratitude bore down on her. As promised he tore himself away from her intoxicating aroma seconds before she would have succumbed to her body’s needs, bringing them back to the confines of his bed to continue his relentless seduction.

Still panting heavily from her second near-climax, Liz felt the firmness under her back disappear, and she knew that she was no longer in the fictitious Crashdown of Max’s fantasy. Her suspicions were confirmed when she opened her eyes to find herself once again in the middle of his bed, her hands now bunching the sheets instead of resting behind her head, and Max slowly stalking his way up her body. He paused when his head reached her breasts, which were still covered by the stiff aqua fabric of her uniform. His hands firmly grasped the center where the dress buttoned, another devious look telling her he intended to tear it off of her as he had done with the panties.

“Wait!” she panicked. “I won’t have anything to wear home.”

Buttons flying in all directions, he growled out with untamed lust, “Then I guess you will have to stay here with me…” Moving over her, he raised her arms over her head and pinned them there with one hand, “completely naked…”. He bent his knees just enough to press his stiffness into her drenched core, “and ready to have my cock buried deep inside of you anytime I want.”

Taking pleasure in his commanding words and the sensation of his manhood stirring her desire once again, she playfully wrapped her legs around his waist, any concern for her torn clothing swiftly dissipating. “And what if I don’t want your cock in me?” she inquired as her body asked an entirely different question: how much longer would she have to wait to feel him driving into her?

Moving her legs away from him, Max pushed aside the torn remnants of her uniform to reveal the bra that matched the shredded undergarment currently strewn on the floor. With one quick maneuver he ripped it away from her as well, leaving the tattered pieces in a new pile at the foot of the bed. Giving her completely exposed body an appreciative glance he licked his lips, discovering that quite a bit of her juices had remained on his face. Not wanting to waste such a precious treasure, an idea quickly formed in his mind. Leaning his head down he rubbed his mouth and chin against her bare flesh, starting at her navel and working his way up to her breasts. When he had successfully transferred all of the honeyed fluid to her body, he shifted back down to her navel and began to lick and suck her skin clean. While he enjoyed the sweet fruit of his labor he arrogantly proclaimed, “That is just not possible.”

“Oh? And why is that?” she asked in feigned disbelief.

He pressed into her one last time before slowly raising off the bed, the dominant spark in his eye the only incentive she needed to remain where she was, arms still held over her head. With catlike grace he shed his clothing, each lost article revealing more of his striking physique. Once he was completely naked, his proud erection a testament to his ferocious desire for her, her eyes wandered over his body with the same degree of fascination as the first time she had seen him this way. The penetrating eyes that could see to the depths of her soul… the inviting lips that took her to such heights of ecstasy…the muscled chest that could be protectively strong and comfortingly warm at the same time…the skillful hands that touched her in ways no one else could…that special part of him that only she would ever know…the lean, powerful legs that had carried him from parts unknown back to her…he was simply…perfect. Except for all those scars, a little voice nagged at the back of her mind.

His determined countenance as he approached her rapidly chased the thought from her head, replacing it with a blazing curiosity to hear his response to her question. She licked her lips in anticipation as he crawled on the bed and lingered over her once again. Directing her to lift up ever so slightly so that he could wrap his arm around her waist, her erect nipple proved to be too tempting for him to ignore as it rose to meet his lips. Momentarily lost in the pleasure of his sensuous mouth contacting her heated skin, Liz was caught completely off-guard when she was suddenly flipped over, the left side of her face firmly pressed into the pillow while her hands continued to be restrained. Her body captured between his tensed knees, she relaxed against him submissively.

His voice was immediately in her ear, “Because you are my mate. I know…”

His hand was still underneath her, only now it was moving to explore her front side. Over and over his fingers traversed her receptive flesh, carefully avoiding the places she wanted him to touch the most. Seductively traveling up to tease her right breast, he gently pinched the nipple that had been in his mouth just a minute before.

“…every inch…”

He nibbled at the sensitive area behind her ear while he lightly tugged on her nipple, waiting until it could harden no more before snaking his hand across to her other breast. He swirled his finger around her areola, moving away just as he touched the center, drawing out his tantalizing ravishment of her.


He brought his hand up to where her arms were being pinned down by his other hand while aggressively nipping the smooth skin at the back of her neck.


Using just his pinkie finger, he traced down her right arm and along her side, the usual laughter that such a touch would bring about unable to be projected through the halting thickness of her aroused breathing.


His finger trailed lower until his right hand was even with the soft curve of her behind. He brushed his thumb over the supple flesh, sketching several imaginary patterns across her cheek. Slowly edging his hand to her front again, he possessively spread it across her stomach.

“I know…”

He shifted all his weight to his left side and raised his right leg to wedge it between her knees, effectively ordering her to open up her legs for him. His hand crept lower, the tips of his fingers coming to rest in her dark curls.


He placed his left leg between hers as his finger eagerly sought out her clit.

“…to touch you…”

With one strong jerk of his arm, he brought her up to her knees, her head pushing further into the pillow while he continued to restrain her arms.

“…I know…”

He stroked her sensitive bundle of nerves for what seemed like an eternity to Liz, each light flicker of his finger creating a potent jolt of energy that resonated throughout her exhilarated body.


His fingers now coated with her liquid desire, he momentarily removed them to breathe in and taste the distinctive scent and flavor that was his mate.

“…to touch you…”

Ignoring her frustrated wail of anguish at the deficit he had created, he delayed his return to pleasuring her to accentuate the truthfulness of his words. It wasn’t until she began to squirm with discomfort that he moved his hand to her behind, probing her willing heat with a gentle thoroughness that soon rewarded him with more sweet nectar to feed his insatiable appetite.

“…to make you…”

Max repeated this sensual pattern of stimulating her with his fingers then feasting on her juices several times, letting her come closer to her climax with each round until she was almost frantic with the need for release.

“…so crazy with need…”

Feeling his own resolve beginning to crumble, the small taste of her on his fingers soon was not enough for him. With a final lick of his hand, he released her arms and flattened out on the bed until his mouth was level with her womanhood. Taking in a long inviting breath of her, he plunged his tongue into her depths, quickly drinking down the juice that had pooled there.

“…that you…”

Hearing her fervent whimper of enjoyment, he pulled away from her center, not wanting to take the chance that his tongue may trigger her release.

“…beg for my cock…beg for me.”

He shifted on the bed again, this time to lean into her back and immobilize her with an arm angled across her front, his right hand grasping her left shoulder as he held her close to him. Pushing up to rest on her elbows caused his erection to brush against her sodden heat, the tip of it coming dangerously close to parting her lips. Armed with the sudden knowledge that just one thrust and he would be buried deep inside of her with no barrier between them, he released a feral growl as an animalistic possessiveness overcame him. He sank his teeth into the soft flesh of her shoulder, nearly drawing blood as he bit and marked her with a fierceness she didn’t think he had. His hips instinctually moved against her, seeking to claim what was rightfully his as he continued marking her upper body, each bite eliciting a series of whimpers and groans from her that divulged the irresistible agony he was subjecting her to.

As her passionate cries pierced the air, every cell in his body began calling out to hers, and with unwavering conviction he silently spoke the most fundamental of truths.

‘And once you beg for me, I will not deny you……because I am nothing…without you.’

This last loving thought was all the impetus she needed to do exactly what he had told her she would do…to disclose the real reason why it would be impossible for her to not want him. “Please Max, I want to feel you inside me. I need you to make us whole.”

posted on 30-Jun-2002 12:04:41 AM by SansuCry
Ch. 60 (continued)

Ceasing all other movement, he placed a surprisingly gentle kiss at the nape of her neck before using his splayed arm to guide her back down to the bed, wordlessly directing her to turn on her side. He quickly disentangled himself from her to retrieve a condom from the nightstand. Putting it on with lightning speed he returned to settle in behind her, spooning his body against hers as they had so often done before. He placed his lips on the spot where he had first bitten her, soothing it with his tongue while he caressed all the parts of her that he could reach. She turned to gaze into the smoldering eyes that displayed his every emotion, and his mouth captured hers in a loving yet demanding kiss. He gently massaged the back of her leg, slowly working his way from the inside of her damp thigh down to the soft bend of her knee. When the two finally broke their kiss to catch their breath, he gracefully raised her leg with a coaxing hand and entered her with all the restraint that had been missing from his earlier actions.

The pair made no attempt to stifle their blissful moans as the effects of their physical coupling evoked and strengthened the torrent of emotions that defined their extraordinary bond. Nuzzling her neck as he leisurely mated with her, his deep voice whispered with adoration, "I’ve wanted to take you this way so many times…all those nights in your bed…I ached to make you mine.”

“Oh, Max,” was all she could manage to say, emotion choking the remaining words of affection from her throat.

The placid lovers luxuriated in their coital dance, both partners’ movements carefully orchestrated to bring the other the utmost pleasure. After several blessed minutes of harmonious gratification, when the breathtaking rush of their completion began to lap at the edges of their connection, Max gathered his resolve and reluctantly withdrew from the woman who possessed the other half of his soul. As much as he had wanted to bring both of them the ultimate satisfaction of their release, there was one last thing he wanted…needed…to do before he would allow them to give in. Feeling his aversion to their abrupt separation streaming into her consciousness Liz knew that he was not intentionally being cruel, and that soon enough the purpose behind this interruption of their lovemaking would be revealed and remedied. Max gave Liz one last fiery kiss before climbing off the bed to stand beside it, his hand offered in an unspoken plea for her to grant whatever requests he may make. She did not hesitate to accept, her eyes and mind implicitly trusting his desires.

Leading her to the bathroom, he slid the light’s dimmer switch to full strength before he guided her over to the long counter under the mirror. He grabbed the metal wastebasket and rested it on its side, silently directing her feet to the makeshift stool so that her height more evenly matched his. Standing behind her he brought her arms up from her sides, folding them behind her head to form a faux set of angelic wings, her pale skin accentuating the shiny darkness of her hair. After pulling the silken cascade of chocolate aside, he once again nuzzled the side of her face with his as his hands drifted to her front. Cupping her breasts he looked up to address her reflection, waiting for her eyes to meet his before he began.

“Do you have any idea how stunning you are? When I look at you I see the living, breathing version of every single one of my dreams come true, and I know I will never tire of touching you…of loving you.”

His hand moved down to caress the commitment symbol on her hip. “I like to think that I was sent here for the sole purpose of bearing witness to your magnificence…so that others will know that the beauty of your body is only exceeded by the beauty of your soul.”

His other hand moved between their heated bodies, his fingers searching out her yielding folds to confirm that she was ready to take him once again. She bent slightly forward, her hands coming to rest on the cool white Formica in front of her as he rubbed his erection against her swollen lips, moistening the latex that covered him with a generous amount of her sweet wetness. Bracing herself for the imminent rapture their joining would bring her, Liz took several deep breaths before silently acknowledging her desire for him to continue.

He sank into her with an excruciating slowness, his own breath quickening as he watched her face in the mirror, small twinges at the corners of her open mouth and closed eyes revealing the depths of her pleasure. Once her velvet softness completely surrounded him, his movements subsided so that he could focus his concentration on his verbal seduction. He leaned into her, securing both of his hands on her hips as he quietly commanded, “Open your eyes, my Beauty.”

Fighting the instinct to keep them shut tight, Liz managed to pry her heavy lids apart as she struggled to keep her wits about her. Max lightly trailed his fingers over her bare skin, the simple touch electrifying her as he spoke with a confident passion. “See how enchanting you look now? All the love and desire in your eyes only serves to enhance your exquisiteness.”

He made one calculated stroke out and in, causing her to emit a halting sob.

“Watching you like this… seeing your radiance as you are about to come…there is only one way…that you could be more lovely…” he panted out as he began a lingering rhythm, his hands roaming her lower body until his fingers entwined over her stomach. Liz let out a startled gasp as their reflection in the mirror sharpened in spite of her half-lidded eyes. Watching Max moving behind her and eagerly anticipating his thrusts had instantly enthralled her. His face was awash with ecstatic emotions but when his gaze suddenly would not look up to meet hers, she lowered her focus to where his was concentrated. The sight rocked her to the very center of her being, stirring up feelings that were stronger than she ever could have believed.

She was staring back at herself, only Max’s hands were no longer folded across her stomach. Instead they were protectively cradling her swollen belly, now heavy with his child. She knew without asking that this was his greatest fantasy of her. All others paled miserably in comparison to how desperately he wanted this one to be real.

She had to brace her hands on the edge of the counter as he began to pound into her relentlessly, unable to conceal his tremendous excitement at witnessing his seed flourishing within her. Only one thought was strong enough to seep through the thick haze of raw desire and need that blanketed their connection: did she want this fantasy to come true as much as he did?

As the now extreme physical stimulation of her body and visions of creating a new life with her mate combined to form an insurmountable wave of love and ecstasy, Liz managed to take one last ragged breath before her orgasm swept through her, setting every nerve in her body ablaze as she cried out in euphoric abandon, “Yes…yes Max…yes…oh yes…oh Max

His lover’s strangled response was all it took to push him over the edge, and as the intensity of his own release obliterated any chance of maintaining his self-control, a series of the most erotic images imaginable flashed through both their minds. In each of them they were making love in various positions and places, Max constantly caressing her pregnant belly as their love for each other expanded to include this baby that would inherit the best parts of both of them.

Max had to grab hold of the counter himself as his body faltered under the vigorous workout it had received, his other hand refusing to let go of Liz as his forehead came down to rest against her back. The couple just stood there for several minutes, too exhausted to do anything but breath.

Still unable to move, Liz finally gathered enough air to ask, “A boy or a girl?”

“A girl…” he breathed out as his lips grazed her salty skin. “One who will be just as entrancing as her mother.”

“And as loving as her father,” she added. Smiling coyly, she had to question, “So where did you find out about 69 and uh, 77?”

“My new friend Charlie explained it to me,” he said as he withdrew from her and removed the condom.

“Charlie? Where did you meet him?” she frowned as she looked over her shoulder.

“He lives over in 6A. Juanita usually cleans his room, so I hadn’t met him before this morning.”

“What happened this morning?”

“His toilet was leaking all over the bathroom floor. He asked me to help him fix it.”

Finally straightening up, Max moved aside and leaned against the counter. Still on shaky legs, Liz stepped off of the wastebasket in search of firmer ground. “So what does 69 have to do with fixing a toilet?” she laughed out.

Max uprighted the metal canister and threw the condom away. “Well, actually he was trying to tell me some jokes. Want to hear another one?”

“I’m not sure,” she said as she snuggled up against him. “Let’s go lay down. I’ve had enough of standing for now.”

The couple left the bathroom and laid back down on the bed, Liz curling into Max’s side as he asked with a silly grin, “Why did the Energizer Bunny’s wife put his batteries in backwards?”

“I don’t know. Why?” she smiled back.

Rolling so that he was on top of her, Max rubbed his already hardening member against Liz’s still damp core. “So he’ll keep coming and coming and coming….”

“Oh, gosh. That was so bad, Max,” she said, rolling her eyes.

“Ah, but you like it bad,” he teased as he suckled her nipple.

“No, I like you bad,” she corrected. Licking her lips, she added, “My mouth’s kinda dry. Do you have something to drink?”

“I’ll get you a glass of water,” he said, rising from the bed. Walking toward the bathroom, he stopped and turned towards her. “Wait. I’ve got something better.”

“Trust me…that’s A LOT better,” she laughed as her eyes focused on a certain part of his body, her meaning obvious. “But I really do need something to drink.”

Max explained as he pulled a bottle out of the little refrigerator. “Charlie gave me this. He offered me some beer as a thank-you for helping him. When I told him I couldn’t have it, he gave me grape juice instead.”

“Grape juice sounds good,” Liz agreed.

“I really like this stuff. It tastes just like the juice we had with our dinner on Christmas Eve,” he smiled sweetly as he remembered that wonderful night, the night his beautiful Liz had committed herself to him. As another thought flashed through his mind he put the bottle behind his back and returned to the bed. “I want to try something before I give you a drink.”

“Adventuresome today, aren’t we?” she smiled up at him.

“I don’t remember hearing any complaining from you,” he quipped back.

“What can I say? I have a thing for sexy aliens who have an occasional dominant streak.”

“I better be the only alien you have a thing for,” he joked. “Ok, close your eyes. And no peeking.”

“No peeking. I promise,” she said as she squeezed her eyes shut.

Max opened up the bottle and stuck his finger in the opening, wetting it with the juice. Setting the bottle on the nightstand, he climbed on the bed and rubbed Liz’s nipple with his finger, teasing it into a peak before latching on with his mouth. He made several grunts of enjoyment before breaking away from her. “Mmmm. You are so delicious.”

Repeating his actions on her other breast, he was about to suckle it when Liz’s nose wrinkled. Her eyes popping open, she sat up abruptly. “Max, that smells like alcohol.”

“It’s only juice. You said juice was ok,” he countered, a little perturbed that his play time had been interrupted.

Taking another sniff Liz said, “That definitely smells like alcohol. Let me see the bottle.”

Max reached out to grab the bottle, but the hand supporting him slipped and he fell off the bed with a thud.

Liz asked with concern, “Max, are you all right?”

When he didn’t answer, she looked over the side of the bed. Suddenly she was being yanked from the bed herself and in an instant her body was spread out over Max’s. Trying to keep a straight face, Max said in his best Cambell voice, “I think I have a boo-boo.”

“Where is it? Do you want me to kiss it and make it feel better?” she asked, her attempt at a maternal tone belied by the seductive look she was giving him.

“Here,” Max said as he raised his arm and pointed to his elbow.

Liz wasted no time taking it in her mouth, languidly tasting his warm flesh as she worked.

“And here.” He pointed to his chest.

She slid down his body to have better access to him. Beginning to suckle his nipple as he had done hers, she was reminded of the questionable grape juice. Getting up on her knees, she leaned over Max to reach for the bottle. Just as she grabbed it, Max pulled her hips over his mouth and began to taste her once again. “Wow. You do have an incredible tongue, Max,” she murmured as she instantly got lost in the sensation of his intimate kisses.

‘Turn around,’ he silently commanded.

‘What?’ she asked.

“Turn around and lay on top of me. I want to show you how well I know what 69 is,” he said as his mouth peek out from under her.

She knew she was supposed to be doing something. What was it? Oh yeah, the bottle. “Wait. I want to check out this bottle first.” Lifting it up to read the label, she shook her head and moaned, “Max, this is so not grape juice.”

“Uh-huh,” he argued. Nodding vigorously he said, “My friend Charlie said so. He said it wasvery special grape juice.”

“Very special grape juice that just happens to be alcohol,” she chuckled. “It’s called wine. Look here. See. Alcohol content 6%.” Poking his chest, she emphasized, “Not Good..”

“Uh oh,” he said like a scolded child. “Are you mad at me, Lizzie?” Laughing he added in a Dr. Seuss imitation, “ ‘Cuz I’d be in a Tizzy, Man I’m getting Dizzy, So let’s get busy!”

Liz broke out into a fit of laughter so hard that Max, afraid she was about to fall over, reached out to steady her. When she calmed down after a few minutes, she answered, “I’m not mad, Max…Mad Max…hey that’s a movie. Anyway, you didn’t know there was alcohol in wine. Besides, I don’t think it’s bothering you because Maria said Michael acted really drunk. You don’t feel drunk, do you?” she asked, her speech coming out in short bursts as she attempted to overcome the hiccups her laughing fit had caused.

“I don’t think so. Remember, I don’t know what it feels like to be drunk,” he said, his voice slightly slurred. “Do I look drunk to you?”

Peering down at him, she couldn’t help but think how adoringly sexy he looked with his mouth just inches from her aching clit. With an exaggerated shake of her head she said, “No, you don’t look drunk to me. But don’t drink any more of it, just to be safe.” Putting her finger to her temple as if in deep thought, she giggled out, “Of course…if I got you drunk then I could have my way with you. You know, maybe that’s what made you so aggressive.” She touched the dark marks on her shoulder, “Not that I minded.”

“You don’t need to get me drunk to have your way with me. All you have to do is be close enough for me to breathe in your scent,” he countered. “Now turn around.”

Setting the bottle back down on the nightstand, she asked like a spoiled brat, “Why should I?”

“’Cuz I think I have another boo-boo,” he said with one more thrust of his tongue.

“And where would that one be?” she asked in a much sweeter tone of voice.

“Right here,” he said as he moved her hand behind her back and ran it down the length of his full erection. Rubbing her finger under the tip of the head, he added, “especially here.”

“Well we can’t have that, now can we?” she asked as she twisted just enough to make her arm comfortable, gently stroking him.

“You still haven’t turned around,” he complained.

“I’m taking care of your boo-boo. Isn’t that what you wanted?” she asked, fluttering her lashes at him.

Frustrated by her lack of cooperation, he had to think of something to get her where he wanted her. “I don’t think that is enough. I’m afraid I will need some…medicine.” He dipped his finger into her wetness before bringing it to his mouth, leaving no doubt exactly what kind of tonic he desired.

Liz had started out with every intention of mercilessly taunting him, considering it fitting retribution for his earlier actions; however as it always seemed to be with them, a few choice words from him caused her to abandon any plans for revenge. She just wanted him too badly to be patient with her games. Turning and wiggling until her head was poised over his and his lips were against hers, mouths teased and tasted, only ceasing once each had drunk down the other’s intoxicating elixir and all their aches had been relieved.

“So did Charlie tell you any other jokes?” Liz asked as they snuggled in bed together, having finally
managed to drag their satiated bodies off of the floor.

“No. I think he got tired of having to explain them to me,” Max answered as he played with Liz’s hair.

“Well, it’s probably for the best, anyway,” she said pensively.

“Why is that?” he questioned.

“Honestly, those aren’t really the kind of jokes you should be learning. They’re sort of crude, so I wouldn’t go telling them to anyone else if I were you.”

“Did they upset you?” he asked with worry.

“Me? No. Was I surprised? Yes...definitely yes,” she said as she looked up at him. Suddenly remembering his fantasy with her in a very pregnant state, she smiled and added, “although nowhere near as surprised as seeing myself pregnant.”

“Is that good or bad?” he reluctantly asked.

“It was a good surprise,” she said quietly, her hand aimlessly roaming his chest. “I just never realized you thought about that.”

“I know I shouldn’t.”

“Why not?” she asked with a bewildered expression.

Looking towards the picture on his nightstand, he said so softly that she almost didn’t hear him, “I shouldn’t wish for things I cannot have.”

Seeing the sadness in his face, she moved until she was lying on top of him, forcing him to look her straight in the eyes. “Max, some of the greatest people in the world dreamed about things they didn’t think they could have. But then they found the courage and determination to go out and get those things anyway. The day we stop dreaming is the day we stop living.”

“That sounds like another one of your grandmother’s sayings,” he observed.

“It is,” she confirmed. “And it’s a good one, too.”

Staring at her reverently, he cupped the back of her head as he disclosed, “Ever since that day at the mall, when I saw a pregnant woman for the first time and you explained that she was carrying a baby inside of her, all I can think about is how amazing you would look with my baby growing inside of you. Everyone would know that my love for you made that baby.”

Liz placed a few affectionate kisses on his chest before replying. “Max, just because we can’t have a baby right now doesn’t mean it will never happen. We just need to be patient, and when the time is right I promise you we will have as many children as you want.”

Following the leather strap around her neck, Max brought his hand to where the pendant rested on his chest. He studied the symbol for a moment, gathering his thoughts as he took the alien object in his palm. Pointing to the round center, he said, “I like to imagine that this is our daughter. This,” he said as he drew his thumb over the upper swirl, “is you…your arms, and these are mine.” His thumb moved to the lower swirl. “See how our arms are surrounding her? We are protecting her, keeping her safe…safe from pain…heartache…injury…safe from Them and all the cruel things They are capable of.”


“Do you know that there are people who harm their own children? How is that possible? A child should be loved…should be cared for…cherished…not used for some sick purpose…he shouldn’t just be abandoned…” he choked out, a tear running down his cheek.

“Shh, Max. It’s all right,” Liz cooed as her heart broke, her hand coming up to caress the side of his face. “It’s all right. It won’t be that way for our baby…our daughter will be blessed to have you as her father.” She leaned in and gave him a tender kiss as his desperate emotions roiled throughout their connection.

Needing the closeness of her Max fervently returned her kiss, his eyes squeezed tight to block out his agonizing thoughts. When the couple finally broke apart he rested his forehead against hers and let out a ragged breath. Raising his eyes to meet hers, he saw it out of the corner of his eye.

The blazing yellow atmosphere.

He jerked back abruptly, his eyes darting about as he took in his surroundings. The monumental stone wall. The dry red dirt. His whole body trembling, he began to shake his head. “No, no, this cannot be,” he cried out in disbelief. “How did I get here?”

“Max, what’s wrong?” Liz asked with a frightened voice, feeling Max’s confusion.

Her voice snapping him out of his momentary daze, he realized that she was there, too. Confusion quickly becoming anger, he barked out accusingly, “You did this. How could you betray me?”

For the first time Liz noticed that they were no longer lying on the bed in the motel room. “Max, where are we? Where is here?”

“You know where we are! Why did you bring me here?” he said, the anger that darkened their connection now reflected in his voice.

“I didn’t do this, Max. I swear…I don’t know how to,” she pleaded. Sensing a familiarity about this place she asked in a mystified tone, “Max, is this…Antar?”

Too enraged to hear her words, Max snarled out, “I told you that I did not want to ever come back here. And you brought me anyway…Why?

“Max, please…”

Seeing the pendant resting between her breasts, he took it in his hand and gave it one forceful pull, snapping the leather strap.

“NO!” Liz yelled out in anguish.

“Why do you still wear this? Must you continue to torture me? Why can you not just let me forget?” he shouted, his fist threateningly close to her face.

“Forget what? Max, I don’t understand…” she implored, straining to comprehend the fragmented thoughts, both spoken and unspoken, rushing at her.

“You taunt me with promises of your love…induce me to dream of things that can never be,” he bit out. Criticism lacing his voice he added, “You are no different than the rest of Them.”

“Max, you can’t mean what you’re saying. You know that I am not like Them. …” she begged, almost too shocked to speak.

“You are right! You are worse than Them,” he said shakily. “They freely admit They hate me. YOU allow me to pretend, and you pretend right along with me. And now that you have…let me get close…touch you…cursed me with your love, you will take it all away from me without a second thought.”

Stunned by his hateful words Liz slid down the stone wall, the rough exterior scratching her back as she fell to the ground. The fury invading her mind was too much for her to handle. She prayed that somehow she would wake up from this horrendous nightmare.

“N’ahn diem Zan! N’ahn diem Zan! K’tana na tok,” he roared as he strode away from where she had collapsed. “Han’ian ot vud tun atay!”

Curling up into a fetal position Liz began to shake and rock uncontrollably, only vaguely aware of his continued ranting.

“All this time I have fought to survive, and for what? If I were to live a hundred years it would not change a thing. Diemi diemu,” he said with disgust. “I should have asked that bastard Jake to kill me…should have begged him to end this miserable existence. He started all of this…I never would have remembered…never would have healed you…if it had not been for him…He must pay for what he has done…for all the pain he has caused…that f*cker should suffer just as much… ”

Anger and frustration building inside of him, Max frantically searched for a release. Grabbing a sizable rock, he aimed at the wall and threw the heavy stone with all the strength he could muster.

In the blink of an eye the bottle of wine smashed against the wall of the motel room, shattering into a million pieces as the liquid showered over the small figure cowering in the corner.


Feeling the weight of the pendant in his hand, he looked down to see that he had indeed torn it from her neck.

“Beauty?” he asked in a heartbreaking whisper.

A strangled sob came from his mate.

His heart instantly filled with self-loathing. Already knowing the answer, he asked the question anyway. “What have I done?”

He quickly ran to the corner where she was, not caring that he was stepping in broken glass. He reached out a tentative hand to touch her, and she cried out at the contact.

“Beauty, please. I cannot tell you how sorry I am. Let me get you out of there.”

He reached out to her again, and she struggled and fought against him as he scooped her up in his arms. While he carried her to the bed she kicked and screamed at him, her wildly flaying arms and legs making hard contact several times. He laid her down as gently as possible before swiftly backing away. She scrambled into a sitting position before her movements calmed considerably, but her alcohol-soaked hair fell in and around her face in clumps as her heavy breathing sounded in the room like a race horse that had just crossed the finish line.

Max’s eyes filled with tears, the visible signs of his remorse spilling down his cheeks as he spoke, “Beauty, please. I do not know what happened…what came over me. I did not mean to say those things.”

She continued to glower at him.

Sinking to the worn carpeting he pleaded, “Are you hurt? Please tell me I did not hurt you…I cannot stand the thought…”

Her breathing partially coming under control, she realized there were so many things she had to know.
Had that been Antar? What exactly had happened there? Where had this sudden hatred of his come from, and could he possibly be capable of harming her? Knowing that the answer to one question would resolve all the others, she gritted out in an angry tone that did not hide the underlying hurt, “Why… you……continue….to doubt…….my love…….for you?”

“Diemi diemu,” he whispered to himself. Defeatedly he said to her, “Because it is impossible to love the unlovable. Even for you.”

“What are you saying, Max? That you don’t want my love? Or that you don’t need it.” She spat out bitterly.

“It has nothing to do with what I need or want. I am unable to take what you are so willing to give.”

“Damn it, Max! This isn’t fair. You can’t do this to me,” she said in frustration. Hoping to shock some response from him, she raised her voice and argued, “One minute you’re ripping my clothes off and f*cking me and talking about having babies with me and in the next you’re accusing me of things that I have not, and could not, do. You say you would have rather died than come back to me. You almost hit me?” Running her hands through her wet hair, she added, “You threw a glass bottle at me. So enough is enough. Stop bullshitting me and just tell me what you want!”

With a hesitant slowness and tentative caution he slunk towards the bed. Uncertain eyes, filled with all the fear that had been there at her first glance of him, raised to meet hers as he silently beseeched her, his hand desperately grabbing hers.

‘Please do not abandon me. I do not want to die alone.’

Feeling every ounce of his torment and suffering, she slid off the bed and took him in her arms. He clung to her immediately, desperately grasping at her as he was overcome with sorrow. The huge, raking sobs that poured out of him blended with her brusque staggered wails to compose a heartwrenching duet as the couple grieved…Max for all the things he knew, and Liz for all the things she didn’t.

posted on 3-Jul-2002 10:00:33 AM by SansuCry
I guess I forgot to warn you on that last part, so I’ll tell you now.

Buckle your seatbelts, kiddies, you’re in for one helluva bumpy roller coaster ride. For your own health and safety, anybody having a weak heart should exit the ride immediately.

I’m sorry, but there are NO cash refunds…however you may apply all proceeds to my bona fide Dreamer Happy Insurance Policy. (Sansu says in a sing-song voice, “’cuz you’re gonna need it…”)

BTW, I'm shamelessly plugging my new fic, American Dream. Tell me what you think.


Chapter 61

“ELIZABETH MARIE PARKER. I know you’re in there! Open this door right now!” Maria yelled out as she pounded on the steel motel room door.

Liz’s head shot up in surprise, wincing as a sharp pain stabbed her in the back of her neck. She went to raise her right hand to massage it, but she couldn’t move. Looking down, she saw that her lover’s naked body immobilized her.

“Max?” she asked, confused. She blinked a couple of times before the sleep cleared from her eyes. Once she could see, she looked around, panic welling up inside of her. She was in Max’s motel room, sitting on the floor as she leaned against the bed. She wasn’t wearing any clothes, and she smelled like …alcohol. Max was on the floor with her, half laying on her with his arms wrapped around her waist. Brusquely shaking him, her voice raised, “Max! Wake up!”

Three more pounds. “LIZ. If you don’t get your ass out here right now, I WILL break this door down.”

“Max, you have to wake up,” she said desperately.

Max slowly raised his head to see Liz staring back at him, her eyes wide with fright. Seeing that she was completely naked, clumps of damp hair pressing into the side of her face, he sat up quickly and took her in his arms. “Liz, are you all right? What’s wrong?”

Pound. Pound. Pound. “MAX! LIZ! I mean NOW!”

“Maria?” he questioned, although it was obvious that no one else would have the guts to be screaming at the top of their lungs outside his room, especially in the middle of the day.

“Max, what am I doing here?”

Taking a quick glance at the disheveled condition of the room, Max’s eyes settled on the door. “I don’t know. But maybe she will.” He stood up and held his hand out to Liz. He had her sit on the bed, wrapping her in the bedspread before he grabbed the sheet for himself. Just as Maria began her fourth tirade, he unlocked the door and let her in.

Liz Parker had known Maria DeLuca since they were five years old, and in all those years she had never seen her best friend as angry as she was at that very moment.

“What the HELL is wrong with you? You leave me all alone at the Crashdown, make me lie to your Dad, and then have the nerve to stay gone for the rest of the day. I know we’re best friends, Liz, but this is going too far.” Before she could continue, she was stopped by Liz’s appearance. Moving closer to the bed, she reached out and touched her friend’s hair. “Oh my God, you smell like a brewery.” Closing her eyes as she rested the bridge of her nose between her thumb and index finger, she said in disappointment, “Damn it! I knew it. I just knew it! You two got drunk!”

“What?!” Liz said, shocked that Maria could think such a thing. “Maria, you know I would never…”

Looking pointedly at Liz’s blanketed body, Maria interrupted, “ There’s a lot of things I thought you would never do. But I guess things change. You reek of alcohol.” Seeing the pattern of liquid on the wall and the broken glass scattered in the corner, she added, “And if I’m not mistaken, that was a liquor bottle. I guess one of you is an angry drunk.”


Eyes shifting between the couple, Maria said bitterly, “Besides, I hate to think that there could be any other possible explanation for your little ‘totally screwing up orders’ routine this morning, or your ‘asinine caveman’ act.”

“Maria, please slow down. Look, I don’t know what happened or why you’re so upset, so could you just give me a minute to figure out what’s going on?” Liz pleaded.

As irate as she was, Maria could tell that her best friend was genuinely unnerved. “Fine,” she consented, “but you’d better make it quick. I’m not the only one pissed over your disappearing act. If I were you, I’d be thinking about getting my ass back home muy pronto.”

Looking at her watch, Liz let out a startled gasp, “It’s eight o’clock? At night?”

“What time did you think it was?” the other girl asked.

“I don’t know…you said I was at the Crashdown this morning?”

“Well, Liz’s body was there, but her brain left the building at about…oh, ten o’clock. Then Mr. Asshole Caveman here came in and whisked the rest of you away about ten-thirty or so.”

“We’ve been together since ten-thirty this morning?” Max asked, realizing that he didn’t remember being with Liz at all. The last time he had seen her was when she was driving away with Isabelle and Alex the night before. However, now that he had time to register what Maria was saying, it was obvious they had been together…they were both naked and in his room, after all.

Almost relieved that Max didn’t remember any more than she did, Liz tried to focus on what her last memory was. “Something’s wrong…It’s like a whole block of time is missing. I remember going home from here last night…I had a piece of pie with my Dad when I got home…I went to bed and got up at 5:30…I went downstairs and started my shift…I remember taking Mr. Smithfield’s order, and he had jut gotten out of 8:30 mass…Mrs. Osworth came in and I gave Jose her order…and I…I…that’s it. That’s all I can remember…until I heard you knocking.”

“So you don’t remember being here at all?” Maria asked in disbelief.

“No. Not at all.” Liz said honestly, searching the room for some visual clue that might jog her memory.

“Well like I said, your Dad is on the war path, so a little word to the wise…or unwise, as the case may be. It probably would be a good idea to wash all that booze off of you before you go home.”

Liz nodded her acquiescence. Gathering the bedspread about her, she stood up and headed toward the bathroom. As she reached down to pick up her uniform, the spread slipped from her shoulder and three gasps were heard in the room.

“What happened to my uniform?” “Are those teeth marks on your back?” The two girls questioned simultaneously. The two exchanged startled looks as Max gaped in shocked terror. Had he done those things? If so, why didn’t he remember doing them?

Seeing the remnants of Liz’s undergarments on the floor, Maria scowled, “You know what, I don’t want to know. It’s been a very long day for me, and we have to be at school in twelve hours. I’m going home.” She moved to the door and grabbed the knob.

“Wait,” Liz begged. “What am I supposed to do for clothes?”

After the horrors of waitressing by herself all day, Maria wanted to tell Liz that she didn’t give a flying fudge about her clothing situation. But, despite everything, Liz was still her best friend. She thought for a minute before she answered. “I’ve still got all my clothes with me from staying at Michael’s. Let me see what I can find. They may be dirty, but at least they’re more wearable than that,” she said as she pointed to the rag in Liz’s hand. “As for underwear, you’re on your own, girlfriend. I ain’t sharin’.”

“Thanks Maria. I’ll make this up to you big time. I promise,” Liz said gratefully.

“Gee, where have I heard that before?” Maria replied rhetorically. Sighing she said, “I’ll be back in a minute.”

“I’m just gonna go ahead and jump in the shower,” Liz responded, continuing her journey into the bathroom.

As soon as Maria was out of the room Max grabbed the pile of his clothes from the floor and ran to the bathroom, where he found Liz examining the dark marks, complete with teeth impressions, that plagued her back and shoulder.

‘Beauty?’ he silently called to her in anguish.

Her eyes met his and his fear dissipated as he saw the awed look in her eyes. Giving him a demure smile, she said shyly, “I assume you gave these to me.”

“Liz, I am sorry. I wish I knew what had happened,” he said with sadness.

“Max, really…there’s nothing to apologize for. I’m sure you didn’t do anything I didn’t want you to do,” she said as she ran her hand down his arm soothingly. “So you really don’t remember either?” she asked as she moved to turn the shower on, testing it with her hand before stepping in.

“No,” he said as his shoulders slumped. Starting to dress, he asked, “What if Maria is right? Maybe we did go out and get drunk.”

“But why would we do that, Max? It doesn’t make sense. Besides the fact that I’ve never wanted to drink before, Maria had already warned us about Michael’s reaction to alcohol. That would be taking such a big risk, and for what?”

Although Max was listening to her try to piece together what happened, there was only one thing that was currently of concern to him. Needing to know, he asked, “Do they hurt?”

“They’re a little tender, but they look a lot worse than they feel. Maybe after I’m finished in here, you can kiss them and make them feel better,” she teased.

He finished zipping up his jeans as he said, “I would like to do nothing more. However, I think it is best for you to hurry before you father gets even angrier with you, so I’m going to leave you to your shower. I think I will go and clean up that broken glass.”

“All right,’ Liz said with a tinge of disappointment.

Maria was standing by the door when he came out of the bathroom, a small stack of clothes in her hand. Setting them down on the table, she said, “These are the best I could find. Tell Liz I’ll see her at school tomorrow, if she survives the firing squad.”

“Wait!” he said desperately. “Can I ask you something?”

Rubbing her eyes, she said, “Yeah. Shoot.”

“What did you mean when you said I acted like an ‘asinine caveman’?”

“Well, you strode into the Crashdown like you owned the place, started making out with Liz in front of a restaurant full of people, then proceeded to throw her over your shoulder and carry her out of there, even knowing that your little stunt would leave me there by myself.”

“Oh,” he said quietly. After an awkward pause he added, “I’m sorry for making things difficult for you today. You’ve been nothing but nice to me, and I don’t want to harm our friendship. Please forgive me.”

Maria knew that this was far from over. She needed more answers, but she was too exhausted and it was too late to be thinking about it now. She would work on Liz at lunch the next day, but for now all she could do for Max was give him a little reassurance.

“Only on one condition.”


“Make sure nothing like this ever happens again.”

“Absolutely,” he agreed.

She gave him an amicable smile as she opened the door. “See ya later.”


Max was sitting on the edge of the bed with his head in his hands, oblivious to the fact that Liz had finished showering. “Hey,” she said softly.

He looked up at her, and a spark of desire flashed in his eyes when he saw her beautiful body wrapped in nothing more than a skimpy towel. “Hey,” he answered in a husky voice. “Maria said she would see you tomorrow. She left some clothes on the table for you.”

Liz gave him a sweet smile before walking over to where the clothes were. She silently hoped he would come and help her get dressed.

‘And if I were to do that, you would never make it out of here.’

“Yeah, you’re right. I’m just afraid that once I get home I’m not going to be allowed to leave for the next week.”

“I will come to you, then,” he said as he held up a piece of the broken bottle he had saved from his clean up.

Liz was about to tell Max that it probably would not be a good idea to take such a chance, but her attention shifted focus when she saw what was in his hand. Before she could ask him about it, he began speaking.

“I think I know where this came from.”

“You do? You remember what happened?” she asked eagerly.

“Not really. Just like you, there is a lot of time that I can’t account for. I remember being awakened by a knock on my door. At first I didn’t answer it because the man did not look familiar. When he knocked again he said his name was Charlie. I knew by his name that he lived in the room at the end, and when I opened the door he asked me to help him fix his toilet. I refused until he said that it would be a big mess for Juanita to clean up if it kept leaking.”

“So you helped him fix it?” she asked as she slipped on a pair of faded jeans.

“Yeah, and when we were finished he offered me a can of beer as a thank you. When I told him I don’t drink beer, he asked me whether I was into drinking the hard stuff. I wasn’t sure what he meant, so I told him I preferred sweet things like juice. Then he offered me this. He said it was nothing more than fancy grape juice.”

“And so you drank it,” she surmised after pulling the emerald green sweater over her head.

“I just took a small taste because I wasn’t sure whether I’d like it. The last thing I remember is thinking that it tasted like the juice Isabelle had given me for our Christmas Eve dinner.”

“And then?” she questioned, looking relieved when she found her socks and shoes still intact.

“And then you were waking me up and Maria was yelling outside the door.”

“So there’s no doubt then. You definitely got drunk, just not intentionally,” she concluded as she sat down on the bed next to him.


“Although that still doesn’t explain how I ended up getting drunk, too.”

Coming out of his thoughtful haze, Max noticed that she was dressed. As she bent down to slip on her sock, he stopped her with a brush of his hand. Silently taking the sock, he slid to the floor and knelt in front of her. Resting her foot on his knee, he lovingly covered it with the sock before slipping it into her shoe and tying the laces. He then did the same for her other foot.

‘I feel like Cinderella.’


‘It’s a fairy tale. The prince finds his true love and they live happily ever after.’


‘Well it’s a little more complex than that, and putting on my shoe for me reminded me of the glass slipper and…’ she trailed off as she noticed his increasing confusion. ‘Nevermind.’

He stood up and held out his arms to her, taking her into a tender embrace as he pressed a chaste kiss to her forehead. “It is time to go, my Beauty.”

Liz reluctantly pulled away from him and walked toward the door. Max grabbed his jacket and wrapped it around her shoulders before they went out into the cool night air. The couple walked in silence, taking in the sights as they slowly made their way to the Crashdown, knowing they should be in a rush yet hesitant to let their time together end.

Once the building was in sight, Liz stopped and turned to Max. “You better let me go the rest of the way alone. I already have enough explaining to do.”

He nodded his agreement. “Contact me when you are finished with your parents.”

She took his jacket off and handed it to him, standing on the tips of her toes to give him a quick peck on the cheek before bounding off to meet her fate.

It wasn’t until she was in the thick of things with her parents that she realized she was no longer wearing the pendant.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 3-Jul-2002 10:31:49 AM ]
posted on 6-Jul-2002 8:41:20 PM by SansuCry
I just gotta tell you guys about the most expensive package of cheese I have ever bought. Last week I went to the grocery store and bought a $ 2.00 package of shredded cheese. When I opened it up, I found out it was moldy. I was going to throw it out, but my hubby said I should return it to the store and get a new one. So the next time I went to the store, I did my shopping and when I came out I remembered the cheese I had brought with me. I went back into the store, and after arguing with the guy at the service counter for several minutes, I finally was able to get my replacement package of cheese.

So I go back out to my vehicle and head towards home. At the exit I waited to pull out until the only two cars approaching have their turn signals on to pull into the store's lot. I wait for the first car to start turning before I begin to pull out. Before I know it, WHAM, the second car had swerved around the first car and had decided to go straight, causing me to hit him in the process. (Fortunately I was going so slow that none of us got hurt.)

So now the $2.00 package of moldy cheese that I should have just thrown out will now cost me $ 252.00, the price of the cheese plus my deductible!

Now back to our regularly scheduled fanfic...

Chapter 62

She had the door open before he even knocked. “Hey, Max. How’s it going?”

“I’m fine, Carrie. Thanks,” he said as he dragged the cleaning supplies in behind him. He stopped short when he noticed how organized the room was. Even the smoky haze that usually filled the small area was no longer present.

She smiled when she saw the surprised expression on his face. “Uh, I’m packing my things up. I didn’t want to wait ‘til the last minute,” she explained.

“So you are going home?” he asked as he walked in far enough for her to shut the door.

“Yup. Looks like I’ll be checking outta here Thursday, so do a good job. This may be the last time you clean my room.”

Max couldn’t help but be saddened by her news. Although she had told him she’d be leaving, he didn’t realize it would be so soon. With their previous conversation, they had come to some unspoken agreement that they would be developing a friendship, but now that was a moot point. She would be gone from his life in just a few days. Still, she seemed very enthused about reuniting with her family, so he returned her smile and observed, “It looks like you’ve done a pretty good job of cleaning already.”

Placing her cigarettes and lighter in the nightstand drawer, she said proudly, “I even dumped the ashtrays for you.”

“Thank you,” he said sincerely before moving towards the bathroom.

Carrie followed him, standing in the doorway as he worked. “So did you have a fun New Year’s?”

“Yes. It was nice,” he said simply. “And you?”


Giving her a tentative look he offered, “I came by Saturday afternoon with Liz, but I guess you must not have been here. She wanted to apologize to you.”

Her eyes shifting to the side as though she were trying to remember where she had been, she wrinkled her brow as she said, “I was here, but I don’t remember anyone knocking. I must have been asleep.”

He raised the corner of his mouth in a shy smile. “I guess she won’t get the chance to tell you she is sorry, then.”

“Can’t win ‘em all,” she said with a trace of sarcasm.

Understanding that Liz was a sore spot with the girl, Max decided to change the subject. Since this may be the last chance he had to spend time with her, he didn’t want to spoil it discussing something that made her uncomfortable. Instead he asked, “Are you glad to be going home?”

A huge grin automatically lit up her features. “Yeah. I’ve been gone way too long.”

“How long has it been since you’ve seen your family?”

“Almost three years,” she replied sadly.

“Do you miss your brothers and sisters?”

“More than you could imagine,” she said thoughtfully. “I wonder whether they’ve changed.”

“Changed?” he asked, unsure of what she meant.

“Of course they’ve changed,” she answered, thinking how stupid her statement must have sounded. “It’s been three years! It’s just that in my mind they’re still the same--the same ages, the same sizes--as they were the last time I saw them.”

Seeing the sparkle in her eyes at the mention of her siblings, he continued with this line of questioning. “How old are they now?”

Working the numbers in her head, Carrie counted off each child on her fingers as she gave Max a description. “The twins, Tammy and Tina are fifteen. They live in their own little world, complete with a secret language only they can understand. They still play with Barbies. Chrissy is just the opposite. She’s thirteen now, which is such a hard time for a girl. Still a kid, yet she wants to be so grown up. I used to tell her to not be in such a hurry, she’d have the rest of her life to be an adult.”

There was an extended pause as Carrie gathered her thoughts. Just as Max was about to ask her to continue, she started up again on her own. “Jerry is the trouble maker. If you tell him something is black, he’ll say it’s white just to spite you. I think my dad being gone bothered him the most since he was just three when it happened…old enough to remember him, but not quite old enough to understand why he’s not there anymore. And Jimmy is the baby of the family. He’s nine and really shy and quiet, so naturally he’s the perfect target for Jerry’s meanness. I think I miss him the most. I can’t wait to be with all of them again.”

Max finished wiping the counter down and set the bottle of bathroom cleaner back in the supplies holder. He wished Liz could meet the Carrie he was seeing now. Maybe if Liz saw how much his new friend loved her family, she would understand that this young woman wasn’t very different from her after all.

Noticing that Max was finished with the bathroom, Carrie moved away from the doorway and walked back into the main living area. Following behind her Max set the supplies basket next to the television, took out the dust rag and began to clean the little bit of dirt that clung to the long dresser.

Going back to the nightstand, Carrie grabbed a cigarette and her lighter before saying to Max, “Hey, I’m going outside for a smoke. I’ll be back in a minute.”

Feeling bad that she was going out of her way to accommodate him, he said, “This is still your room. You don’t have to leave on my account.”

“It’s no big deal, Max. That’s what friends do…they help each other out.”

He gave her a grateful look as she walked to the door. “Thanks.”

After she left the room, he finished the dusting and decided to get the vacuuming out of the way. He had just begun to change the sheets when she returned, giving her a nervous glance as he watched her approach the bed. He was soon relieved to find that she was only trying to help him, pulling the fitted sheet off the corners of the mattress and tossing them towards the center of the bed. He balled up the dirty linens and stuffed them into the laundry bag, and when he turned back to the bed Carrie was already putting on the clean sheets. The two worked in a companionable silence, he on one side of the bed and she on the other, until the job was finished.

She popped a piece of gum in her mouth before she rubbed her hands together anxiously and said, “So I think that since you got to ask me such a personal question last time, I should get to ask you one this time. What do you think?”

Max certainly hadn’t expected the day to turn out the way it had. He had thought that she might be willing to open up to him a little bit, but with the news of her imminent departure and details of what her family was like, he had found out more than he had ever expected. Carrie was leaving, so what harm could come from telling her what she wanted to know about his life. Well, he couldn’t tell her everything. “It depends on what you want to know.”

“Tell me about the cigarette burns,” she requested.

He closed his eyes tightly against the rush of images that flooded his mind at the mention of the marks, evaluating whether this was something he was ready to discuss with someone who wasn’t Liz. He took a deep breath and opened his eyes before nodding his consent. He gestured towards the table and chairs, indicating that his story would not be a short one.

Once they were seated he began, “His name was Jake, and I had stopped him from attacking Liz…”

“You’re still alive,” Maria commented as Liz sat down across from her at the secluded lunch table. “This is a good sign.”

“Barely alive,” Liz pouted, taking her sandwich out of her bag.

“I told you your dad was pissed.”

Liz gave a sardonic laugh. “That’s an understatement.”

“So how bad is it?” Maria asked with a worried look.

“Not bad, if I were a lifeless slug.”


“I’m grounded for a week for not telling them where I was going. I’m only allowed to go to and from school. I can’t talk on the phone. I won’t be getting my car until after Valentine’s Day. And for leaving you high and dry I have to work two of your shifts and give you the money, including any tips I get.”

“Can’t say I’m too sad about that last part.”

“That was my own suggestion. Since I’m stuck at home, I might as well keep busy.”

“Just do me a favor, chica, and don’t get drunk before you start those shifts.”

“Trust me, I won’t. I figured working for you and giving you the time off is the least I could do to pay you back for covering for me. I don’t need my mom and dad finding out about Max just yet, and you’ve been the best for putting up with all of this.”

“So what did you tell your folks when they asked where you’d been for almost ten hours?” Maria asked curiously.

“When Max and I were translating the books, I had told them I was working on a special project to get time off from work. They automatically assumed it was for school, and I never bothered to correct them.”

“How sneaky of you. And so as far as they know you are still working on this special project?”

“Yup. I just told them that I had to meet with someone else who was working with me before classes started back up. I had forgotten I’d agreed to meet yesterday until they showed up in the Crashdown. Once we were together we lost track of time.”

“And they bought it?” Maria asked, amazed at how adept Liz had become at lying.

“Not only did they buy it, but I also have an exclusion on my grounding Wednesday afternoon so that I can meet with another one of the project participants at the library after school,” Liz boasted.

“And this other ‘project participant’ wouldn’t happen to be Max, would it?” Maria concluded.

A big smile came across Liz’s face as she nodded enthusiastically.

Maria held her tongue a minute, wanting to find just the right way to discuss her concerns with Liz without putting her best friend on the defensive. “Liz, do you really think that’s such a good idea. I mean, what if your parents check the library and you aren’t there?”

“I’m actually going to have Max meet me at the library. I’ve been wanting to show him all the books there ever since he fell in love with the bookstore. If my parents show up, I’ll be right there where I’m supposed to be,” Liz answered, proud that she had been able to come up with a plan to see Max at least once during her grounding.

“Are you two going to be able to keep your hands off of each other?” Maria asked skeptically. “I mean, you two were about to go at it in the middle of the Crashdown yesterday.”

“Well, we won’t be drunk at the library. And according to my pills, my period should be starting today or tomorrow, so I don’t think keeping our hands to ourselves will be much of a problem.”

“Still, Liz. I don’t like this idea. When Max first showed back up, I could understand why you needed to be with him so much. But now he’s able to take care of himself, and all the lies you’re telling just to spend time together are going to catch up to you eventually. Look how close a call this whole drinking thing was. Your dad might have been in the restaurant, or worse yet, Max could have done what Michael did and pulled and E.T., trying to heal everyone in sight.”

“He really did that?” Liz laughed, picturing the always-so-serious Michael running around yelling ‘ouch’ while his finger glowed.

“And plenty more,” Maria said curtly, trying to keep to the current subject of Max and Liz. “The point is, Liz, you can’t be careless. It isn’t just you two that might end up getting hurt.”

“Maria, Max didn’t mean to get drunk. It was an accident. Someone gave him a bottle of wine and he didn’t know it contained alcohol. He thought it was plain old grape juice.”

“Ok, so he didn’t mean to get drunk. He somehow managed to talk you into getting drunk with him anyway.”

“Max and I talked about that last night, and...”

“Wait. How did you talk to Max if you were grounded?”

“The same way I think I got drunk. I bet I didn’t drink any of that wine. I think that I was just feeling the effect it was having on Max through our connection.”

“C’mon Liz. You don’t really expect me to believe that. I didn’t have any problems when Michael got drunk.”

“That may be, but we already know that Max and I seem to have a stronger physical connection than you two. Think about it. You said I started acting weird before Max even showed up at the Crashdown. You know I didn’t go out at five in the morning and get drunk before I started my shift, so it had to be some side effect of Max being drunk.”

Maria thought about Liz’s explanation, and she had to admit it made sense. Liz’s change in demeanor Sunday had been very sudden, so it was conceivable that Liz hadn’t needed to actually drink any of the wine in order to appear drunk. However, the thought of Liz and Max having such an intense bond that one was physically affected by what the other one did was a little frightening to her.

“Liz, it doesn’t really matter which one of you drank what, the end result was the same. You two were drunk and obviously out of control.” Speaking through tightened lips she elaborated, “Most guys don’t go ripping apart their girlfriend’s clothes, and those marks on your back and shoulder are more than just some playful hickeys. Not to mention the bottle…you were covered in booze and it was smashed to pieces. You could have been seriously hurt.”

“You don’t need to worry, ‘ria. Max would never force me to do something I didn’t want to do, and it’s not like he threw the bottle at me or anything, if he was even the one to throw it at all. I know it looked bad, but it wasn’t as serious as you’re making it out to be. No matter what, I know Max loves me. He could never hurt me.”

Hoping her friend wouldn’t hate her for what she was about to suggest, Maria reluctantly said, “Liz, I know you want to think that, but the truth is you just don’t know. If you two can’t even remember what happened, you can’t be sure what he did or didn’t do. You said that he hasn’t had an easy life, so maybe he never learned how to control his anger. As much as I hate to say it, maybe this forced separation is a good thing. It will give you a chance to slow things down a little bit.”

Liz hung her head in disappointment at her friend’s words. “Maria, you have no idea what you’re talking about. Max has more control than you could ever imagine.”

“I’m sure he does, Liz. So does Michael, but the booze changes everything.”

“So we’ll just make sure he doesn’t get drunk again.” A sudden thought occurred to Liz. “Maria, tell me. Exactly how did Michael acted when he got drunk at Paulie’s party?”

“Well, one second he was fine, and the next he was your typical happy drunk, cracking bad jokes left and right and hanging on everyone like they were his best friend. I thought I’d just let him ride it out since he wasn’t doing anything an ordinary drunk wouldn’t do. When he began to do the E.T. thing though, Isabelle and I tried to make him stop. He started getting a little belligerent, so we escorted him up to Paulie’s room to calm him down.”

“Did he get violent?” Liz asked, wondering whether that could be the reason for Maria’s concern.

“No, nothing like that, but he was still pretty nasty. I know he can be a little on the mean side when he doesn’t get his way, but this was beyond anything I have ever seen. Finally he said that he’d get even with us for ruining his fun. A few minutes later he was crying like a baby, telling us he was sorry for being so vicious and that he hadn’t really meant what he had said. So that’s it…happy drunk, angry drunk, weepy drunk, all in about seven hours.”

“Did he remember what had happened once he sobered up?”

“For the most part. He said there were some things that were kind of fuzzy, but he knew enough to tell us most of what had occurred.”

“I wonder why Max and I can’t remember anything.”

“Do you know how much Max had to drink? Remember Michael only had a little sip, so if Max had any more than that perhaps it hampered his memory.”

“I don’t know. I guess there’s no real way to tell how much he drank since we don’t have the bottle anymore. But if it did impair his memory, then maybe that’s why I can’t remember either.”

“This whole thing is just too bizarre for me,” Maria commented uneasily. “If you two are that closely linked, what will happen if one of you is seriously hurt? Or worse?”

“Don’t be so paranoid, Maria. Nothing is going to happen to either of us,” Liz assured, not wanting to let her friend know how much the idea of Max being hurt bothered her. Lowering her voice she added in as cheery a voice as she could muster, “Besides, both our guys have magic powers. I’m sure that between the two of them they could heal just about anything.”

As the bell rang that signaled the end of their lunch period, Maria muttered under her breath, “Let’s hope we never have to find out.”

“So you went through all that just to protect Liz?” Carrie asked in awe. “God, how did you ever manage to survive all that?”

“I knew that I had to find my way back to her. The thought of seeing her again was the only thing that kept me going,” he admitted.

“Wow. That’s just…wow. I never imagined that kind of love really existed outside of fairy tales…that you would risk your own life for her.” Pondering the story he had just relayed, she said, “I hope she appreciates just how extraordinary you are, Max.”

He flushed at her words, but he had to tell her that his motives had been anything but selfless. “I did not do anything special. The truth is I lived a different life—a lonely, isolated life-- before I met her, and I couldn’t stand the thought of being without her. She has been my…salvation.”

Carrie could only stare in amazement at this incredible man sitting across from her. How could someone who seemed so gentle and innocent have the strength to endure such torture and still not be bitter? He risked everything, all because he loved a girl. And now the two were inseparable. Some small part of her had thought that maybe there was a chance…but now she knew. She could never hope to have someone love her like that.

Standing up from the table, she plastered on a friendly smile and said as genuinely as possible, “I’m glad that you are happy with Liz. You deserve it.”

“Thank you,” he said as he stood up with her.

“You better get out of here,” Carrie teased. “Wouldn’t want the neighbors gossiping, now would we? Besides, I still have a lot to do before I’m ready to go.”

“Is there some way I can contact you?” he asked with hope.

“Sure,” she said as she grabbed a piece of paper and jotted down an address before handing it to him, wondering whether he would ever really bother to seek her out.

As he reached out to take it, he decided to pull her into a friendly embrace. “I’ll miss you, Carrie.”

“I’ll miss you too, Max. I wish you could go with me. Maybe once I get settled you can come out to visit me,” she quietly said into his ear, choking back her tears as she luxuriated in the feeling of his warm, comforting arms wrapped around her.

“I’d like that,” he said as he looked down at her, giving her a kindhearted smile.

She tilted her head up and gave him an innocent kiss on his cheek. “Good-bye, Max. I’ll never forget you.”

“Good-bye, my friend.”

He would do it Wednesday.

That Senior Supper guy would be making his deliveries on Tuesday and Thursday this week, and the cleaning people weren’t around then. The bag of bones wouldn’t even know what hit ‘em. It was time to make his move.

Wednesday couldn’t get here soon enough.

Max waited until Liz was fast asleep that night before allowing his thoughts to once again wander to what had transpired Sunday. He had struggled for over two hours the previous night trying to remember even the slightest bit of what had happened during their drunken escapade, to no avail.

He couldn’t stop thinking about those marks, his teeth marks, that covered Liz’s shoulder and back. Liz had chosen to believe that they had spent most of their intoxicated time doing the exact same thing they loved to do when they were sober. She insisted that her torn clothing, missing pendant and unusual body ornamentations were nothing more than indications of their intense passion for each other.

He wished he could share her belief.

The pendant was his clue as to what had really happened. The leather that held it around her neck was far too strong for it to have been accidentally removed. He had to have yanked it off of her in a fit of rage, as he had probably done her clothing. Maybe he had forced himself on her, taking her body when she had refused to give herself to him willingly. Just the thought of it sickened him so much that if he had eaten anything in the past twenty-four hours, he would be vomiting it up at the moment.

He still didn’t want to think that he was capable of hurting his mate, but as much as he wanted to deny it, he knew that it was not only possible but inevitable.

If he stayed here with her, he would hurt her.

If he left her, he would hurt her.

What he had told Carrie earlier in the day had been true. He couldn’t stand the thought of being without Liz. But all this time he had allowed his own selfishness to come before her safety, and he didn’t think he could keep taking chances with her life much longer.

posted on 8-Jul-2002 2:07:25 PM by SansuCry
MamaDee52 I have been trying for years to get my hubby to install one of those darned cloning machines. The man just won't listen....

Thanks to everyone who has left me feedback. It is so good to know you like the story, even if I am driving you crazy by not telling you everything you want to know. In time, I promise, in time....

Let me know what you think.

Chapter 63

“Good morning, Max. Or I guess technically it’s afternoon,” Max’s mentor called out, looking at her watch to confirm what her internal clock was saying.

“Hi, Juanita. How are you today?” Max greeted, squinting at the bright sunlight as he stepped out of Kevin’s room.

“I’m doing just fine,” she answered as she approached him. “I hear you’ve been a pretty busy guy the past couple of days…bringing your girlfriend over to meet Ginny, playing race car with D.J. and Cambell…even fixing toilets with Charlie. You’re a regular jack of all trades.”

“My name isn’t Jack,” Max replied, wondering why she would call him by the wrong name.

Juanita let out a little chuckle. “I forgot that you’re not quite up to speed on figures of speech. Jack of all trades means you’re versatile, you’re good at a lot of different things. Do you know what I mean?”

“I understand,” he said, nodding his head for emphasis.

“After hearing about your handyman experience with Charlie, I had a little talk with Gus. He’s getting too old to be climbing up ladders to replace lightbulbs and take care of the little repairs that pop up around here. So I was thinking that maybe you would want to do those things and earn a little extra money. He said he’d be willing to give you fifty bucks a month off of your rent and give you twenty-five a week in cash. Are you interested?”

“I’m not sure that I’ll…” he started to refuse.

“You’ll be perfect for this, Max. Most of the stuff you’d be doing requires more muscle power than know-how, and I’m sure that Gus would be more than glad to teach you some electrical and plumbing basics. Will you at least think about it before you say no?”

Max knew that Juanita had gone out of her way to talk Gus into giving him the added responsibilities, so the least he could do to show his gratitude was tell her he would consider the offer. “Yes, I’ll think about it.”

“Good,” she said cheerily. “Now if you don’t mind, I have a favor to ask of you.”

“What is it?”

“Well, with everyone heading home from the holidays, all the rooms on the daily side were used this weekend. Would you be a sweetheart and help me clean them after you’re done over here?” she asked hopefully.

“I just finished my cleaning. I was going to have lunch with Ginny today, but I’m sure she won’t mind if I eat with her tomorrow instead,” he explained.

“That would be such a help, Max. I guess Gus isn’t the only one getting old. I used to be able to clean ten rooms like nothing and do all the laundry to boot, but apparently I’m slowing down. I think it would take me more than a week to do all ten of those rooms by myself now,” she narrated as the two began walking to the other half of the motel.

“I’m glad that I am able to help you for once.”

Juanita had already done three of the rooms on the first floor, so they decided to work together to finish the others instead of going their own separate ways. Dropping off the second set of cleaning supplies in the utility room, they agreed to take turns doing the bathroom while the other one did all the other chores.

They talked about how they had spent their holidays, Max being as vague as possible when it came to certain incidents. Juanita watched how his eyes lit up as he talked about playing with D.J. and Cambell, while he sensed her sadness at not being able to see her grandchildren. As they started cleaning the first of the rooms on the second floor, Max said to the woman he was assisting, “Juanita, something has been confusing me, and I was hoping you could explain it to me.”

“What is it, Max?” she queried, noting the seriousness in his voice.

“I have cleaned Chris and Mark’s room several times, and I noticed that there are a few photos of them holding hands and kissing as though they are mates, but they are two men. Is there a reason they have these photos?”

“You never pick the easy questions, do you?” she muttered just loud enough for him to hear.

“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to be difficult.”

“No, Max. You aren’t difficult. It’s just that the answer to your question is…complex. See, Chris and Mark are homosexuals, or what some people call gay. Instead of being attracted to girls, like you are to Liz, they are attracted to other young men.”

“Why?” he asked, his brow wrinkling in confusion.

“That depends on whom you ask. Some people think that they are genetically programmed that way, that something in them from the time they are born makes them have those kinds of feelings. These people see homosexuality as a scientific issue. Others think that we have a choice as to whom we want to be attracted to, and that homosexuals consciously decided to be drawn to people of the same sex. They tend to see it as a moral issue.”

“What do you believe?” he inquired.

“I look at it this way. In our society, gay people are not treated very well. If homosexuality were truly a choice, then why would anyone intentionally choose to be ostracized…hated? As an example, when Chris told his parents he was gay they threw him out of the house and disowned him. If it were as simple as choosing not to love Mark to keep his family, then why wouldn’t he have done it? Asking them to not be gay is like asking them to change the color of their hair or make themselves shorter. It is part of who they are, and you cannot separate that from the rest of them.”

“Do you think they are wrong to love each other?”

“Max, I don’t think that loving someone can ever be wrong. Sadly, we tend to throw the word ‘love’ around quiet a bit, so that it has lost its real meaning. It is very easy to say you love a person when things are going well for you. The true test is whether you can survive the rough times. Pure love, real unconditional love, is a very rare thing. If you are fortunate enough to have someone give you that kind of love, you should not turn it away, no matter what form it is in or what anyone else thinks about it.”

“How did Mark feel knowing that Chris lost his family because of their relationship? What if loving that person ends up hurting them?”

“Mark had a tough time dealing with it at first, especially because his family was very open and accepting of him. At one point he almost left, but he finally realized that Chris wouldn’t stop loving him just because he was gone. Chris was able to make Mark understand that it wasn’t right for Mark to make the decision for both of them. They had a long talk about their relationship: what they wanted from each other, their fears, their hopes for the future. Eventually they worked through it, and now they are stronger because of it.”

Max was silent for several long minutes. When Juanita peeked out of the bathroom to check on him, he was standing by the half-made bed, staring off into space. Giving the counter one last swipe, she walked up to him, clearing her throat so as to not scare him before stepping to his side. “Max, is there something going on with Liz? I get the feeling that this conversation isn’t just about Mark and Chris.”

He looked over at the woman who had become his comrade and feigned a smile. “Everything is fine. I did not sleep well last night, so I am a little tired.”

“You should have said something earlier, Max,” she said as she grasped his arm in a gesture of concern. “Why don’t you go back to your room and take a nap? I can finish up now.”

“No. I’ll keep helping you. I can never seem to sleep during the day, so there’s no point in trying to rest now. I’m sure I’ll sleep fine tonight,” he said, returning to his task of making the bed.

“Suit yourself, but feel free to change your mind,” she directed as she moved to assist him.

“This room is still occupied,” Juanita explained as they approached the door at the end of the floor. “I usually wait until they’ve checked out before cleaning, but the guy has been here for about ten days now. The last time I came to clean, he told me he likes to sleep late, so I decided to do him last.” She knocked on the door several times, using her key to gain entrance when no one answered.

Max walked in behind her and was immediately hit with a bone chilling sensation. Something here…smelled familiar. He felt the blood rush to his ears as the insistent pounding of his heart shook his whole body. Keeping his breathing as steady as possible, he looked around the room for any signs of its occupant. He knew that scent. Why couldn’t he place it? For a split second he had thought it was Jake, but with those extra puffs of air into his lungs he could tell this was not the scent of the man who had tried to kill him. Still, it was just as unsettling.

“Do you know who is renting this room?” he asked, hoping that a name might jog his memory.

“Yeah, hang on a sec,” Juanita said as she pulled out a stack of registration cards from her pocket. Flipping through several before coming to the one she wanted, she squinted as she read the name. “Daryl J. Harrington the third.”

The name was meaningless to him, so why was he having such an intense reaction? He needed to get out of there, but he didn’t want to alarm his co-worker.

“Max, you’re as white as a ghost,” Juanita observed worridly. “Now I’m going to insist that you go to your room and lie down. Even if you don’t fall asleep, I think a little rest will make you feel better. I’ll come and check on you as soon as I’m finished up here.”

That was just the out he was looking for. He nodded his agreement and left the stifling room as quickly as possible.

‘I’m home from school,’ Liz silently told her mate, glad that she didn’t need a telephone to be able to communicate with him.

‘How was your day?’ he asked.

‘Not bad. Not good, but not bad. I miss you so much.’

‘I miss you too, Beauty.’

‘So do you still want to meet me at the library tomorrow?’

‘Of course I do. You just need to tell me how to get there.’

‘Do you still have the map I gave you?’


‘Go get it.’

‘It’s right here.’

‘Ok, see the…red dot. That’s the Crashdown. You’re just down the street.’


‘From the motel, you will walk one block towards the Crashdown, then turn left on that street, which is Satellite Drive. You’ll walk two blocks on Satellite until you reach Jefferson Street. See it on the map?’

‘Found it.’

‘You’ll turn right on Jefferson and walk five more blocks. The library is in the middle of the next block.’


‘I’ll be there as soon as I get out of school, around 3:30 or so. I’ll wait for you outside.’

‘That sounds good. Do you think you could help me find some books tomorrow?’

‘Yeah. Are you looking for something in particular?’

‘The motel owner has offered me a job doing repair work around here. I would like to look for some books on fixing electrical and plumbing problems.’

‘That’s great, Max. I’m so proud of you. We shouldn’t have any problem finding something to help you.’

‘Thank you, Beauty.’

‘Hey, my mom’s calling me. I’ll talk to you in a little while.’

‘All right. I love you, my mate.’

‘I love you, too.’

“Hey, are you feeling any better?” Juanita asked as Max opened his door for her.

“Much better, thank you. The rest did help,” he said, rubbing his eyes.

“At least you’re not so pale now.” She reached up and felt his forehead. “No fever. I think you’re safe. I’m gonna take off now, so I guess I’ll see you Thursday,” she said as she backed out of the doorway.

“Bye, Juanita,” he said as he began to shut the door.

“Oh, Max. Wait,” she said, turning back around to face him. “I forgot to tell you something.”

“What?” he asked, worried by the urgency of her voice.

“Didn’t you say that Liz is a waitress at her parents’ restaurant?”


“Is it the Launch Pad?”

“No, the Crashdown. It is right down the street from here.”

“In any case, you need to tell her to be careful.”

“Why?” he asked, fear already beginning to take hold.

“Because two different waitresses from the Launch Pad have been assaulted within the past week. It was in the newspaper this morning. Just thought I should give you a heads up so you can warn her.”

The blood in Max’s veins ran cold. His second worse nightmare was coming true.

Jake had come back for Liz.

As Liz lay awake late that night, she could hear the muffled sounds of her parents arguing. She crept to her bedroom door and cracked it just enough to hear what they were discussing.

“Jeff, you can’t treat…………..criminal…………bad judgment.”

“Honey, ……………. before. You know ……. more than ………… Sunday……….something going on ………….using this ‘project’….cover up………. report card……grades…….. slipped…………strange…….so down and out ……… suddenly…….. Mary Sunshine?”

“What ……….. Jeff?”

“Do …………. say it?”

“No………………the benefit……..doubt? If ……. meeting someone……library …….project of hers…………. check up on.”

“Are you…………spy on her?”

“…….only way….prove……you are ……..thing……….proportion.”

“……..we do?”

“….Delgado …..owes……….dollars ……. daughter’s………… him………..and offer …………trade…………library……. hardware store……….. Liz goes……..stays……………… it even. Liz….none…..wiser……some…..of mind.”

Liz slowly closed the door and crawled back to bed. It was obvious that she had to stay at the library tomorrow no matter what. Maybe she should warn Max that they were going to be watched.



She knew he was awake. All evening she had been able to feel that he was upset for some reason even though he was trying to suppress exactly how disturbed he was. Now that he wasn’t answering her, she was growing even more concerned.

‘Liz?’ his voice called to her, so faint she could scarcely hear it.

‘Max, what’s wrong? Are you all right?’

She strained to hear his response. ‘I’m…fine, but I can’t hear you very well. Where are you?’

‘I’m at home. Are you at the motel?’

‘Yes, but you sound so far away from me.’

‘I know. You do, too. It’s like our connection is fading. I can still feel you, but…’

‘It’s like it was before we made love.’

‘That’s it! That’s gotta be it. We haven’t made love in…over 60 hours.’

‘Do you want me to come to you, Beauty?’

Liz wanted to say yes, but her parents were still awake, and as predicted her period had started that morning. ‘No. My folks are up. It’s too risky.’

‘Then I will see you at the library tomorrow.’

‘My parents are having someone watch me, so I will meet you inside instead.’

‘All right.’



‘Don’t forget to bring me my pendant.’

She waited for a response, but his voice was no longer detectable.

posted on 10-Jul-2002 9:40:26 AM by SansuCry
Is it just me, or am I getting less feedback with each part? Anyway, thanks to those of you who respond.

It's Wednesday....

Chapter 64

‘Don’t forget to bring me my pendant.’

‘Don’t forget that I love you,’ he had said, but he knew that their connection had vanished before she received his message.

Max had been even more on edge the rest of the night, knowing that without the ability to communicate with Liz it would be much more difficult to keep track of her and make sure she was safe. He was almost relieved that her parents had grounded her. At least with them keeping close tabs on her whereabouts it was less likely she would be in danger from an attack by Jake.

Realizing that the brightening light peeking out from the curtains meant he had gone another night without sleep, he climbed off of the bed to pace the room as he tried to decide what to do. He reminded himself that Jake was certainly not the only problem he needed to deal with, just the most pressing one. Despite any qualms he had about the possibility of hurting Liz himself, he would not think of leaving her with such an obvious danger lurking so closely. It seemed pointless to go wandering around all of Roswell looking for the man who had caused him so much grief, but he couldn’t just sit around and wait for Jake to figure out where to find Liz. He had to have some kind of plan, yet he didn’t have the slightest idea of where to start.

Opening the door to his room, he stared out across the parking lot to the other leg of the motel. After he had come to his room to lie down the previous afternoon, he spent almost an hour searching his memories for anything that might hint at who Daryl J. Harrington the third was and what role that person had played in his life. Had he been some friend or acquaintance that the old man had talked about? Could he be one of Liz’s classmates? The possibilities were endless, but the answer remained elusive. Maybe he should just go over there, knock on the door and end the mystery once and for all.

Deciding that ending that particular distraction might be a good start to formulating a plan, he began to shut the door to go shower when he spied the piece of paper, bordered by several strips of tape to make it adhere to the peeling paint. Taking the note down, he closed the door behind him before reading it.


Can you stop by my room some time this morning? I have to ask you something.


He set the paper on the table as he looked at the little digital clock on the nightstand that read 9:30. If he went to see Carrie as soon as he was done showering, then he might have enough time to investigate this Daryl Harrington before coming back to have lunch with Ginny. Then he could spend the afternoon contemplating the situation with Jake.

Pulling his clean clothes out of the dresser, his hand brushed against the third journal he had stored there. It represented one of those ‘other’ problems. He had torn those pages out of the book as soon as he had read them in a foolish attempt to rid himself of the information he did not want to know, did not want the others to know. Even more foolish had been his idea to hide the pages in one of the file cabinets at the storage unit instead of simply destroying them. Perhaps a small part of him had hoped that one day he would be able to tell Liz the truth, and she in turn would love him nevertheless. However, the rational side of him had begun to take hold, and he knew that no matter how much he wished and pretended, in the end she would only see him as the vile, disgusting creature They saw him as. When the time did come for him to go, he would take the torn out pages and any other proof of his existence with him, disappearing into the night before he gave her a reason to have her love for him replaced by loathing. Better a broken heart than a broken body.

He showered quickly, not wanting to waste too much of his day doing menial tasks when he had so many other things to accomplish. Dressing just as quickly, he grabbed his room key before heading out the door. His eyes targeted the door of Carrie’s room as soon as he stepped outside, but just as he was about to make his way over to the stairs, he noticed the door to Ginny’s room was cracked open just a sliver. He might not have thought much about it, but it was an unusually cold morning and with the widow’s penchant for warm sweaters and down comforters he didn’t want her room to get unnecessarily chilled.

“Ginny?” he asked as he peeked his head inside, his eyes not easily adjusting to the sudden darkness created by the closed curtains. When she didn’t respond, he squinted as he looked towards her rocker, the most logical place for her to be. Not seeing her there his eyes traveled to her bed, a sigh of relief escaping him as he caught sight of the blanketed figure there, the slight movements of the covers indicating the depth of her sleep. As he pulled the door closed behind him, the breeze his movement created suddenly brought his senses to full alert. That scent.

The scent of Daryl J. Harrington the third was in Ginny’s room. Which could only mean Daryl J. Harrington the third had been in Ginny’s room, and was perhaps still there. A maelstrom of emotions washed over him, his body and mind struggling with the age-old dilemma of fight or flight. He couldn’t deny that the scent of this Daryl person caused a torrent of pure terror to course through every inch of his being, as though it instinctively knew to fear the man. But the thought of Ginny, frail and helpless and possibly alone in the room with this individual, spurred him to action. If he did not defend her, no one else would.

Before he could change his mind he opened the door once again, this time with much more stealth, hoping to get the upper hand if need be. Ginny was still asleep on the bed as she had been seconds earlier, her breathing barely audible in the otherwise silent room. Max’s gaze darted around the room nervously, carefully picking it apart for any sign of an intruder as the distinct smell of the mysterious man filled his nostrils. Seeing nothing out of the ordinary he proceeded to relax his guard just a little, assuming that the man must no longer be in the room. Then he saw it. Just a flicker.

In the bathroom the yellow plug-in night-light that Ginny used for her midnight trips cast a haunting glow on the wall just outside the small space. A shadow crossed it so swiftly that if Max had blinked he would have missed it. Daryl J. Harrington the third was hiding in Ginny’s bathroom.

Moving with a speed borne by years of fleeing into the shadows to save his own life Max was in the bathroom with his hand around the intruder’s throat before the man had even an inkling that he had returned. Pushing the man against the wall Max choked the trespasser with several hard thrusts of his arm, taking a revitalizing breath with each forceful movement. The man desperately grasped at his captor, his own arms flailing wildly in an attempt to gain air until the lack of oxygen eventually took its toll. He slumped to the floor with a thud, Max refusing to withdraw his hand until he was certain the man had passed out.

Sliding the switch for the light over the mirror Max immediate recognized Daryl J. Harrington the third.

* You sure did piss Jake off, kid *
* Here, eat this before Jake sees me feedin’ you *
* Sorry, kid, I gotta put you back in the trunk *
* Mike and I would let you go, but Jake would go nuts *
* Here, kid, lighten up—some whiskey’ll do you good *
* Mike, we gotta get him to dump this guy *
* Damn, Jake, how many more times ya gonna do that? *


If Max had any doubt that the man who attacked the two Launch Pad waitresses was Jake, the fact that he was now staring at one of Jake’s lackeys completely obliterated it. As the full force of the revelation hit him he sank to the floor as well, his head coming to rest on his knees as he contemplated his next move. He knew he should call the police and let them deal with Joe’s invasion of Ginny’s room, but this man was his only link to Jake. How could he pass up the opportunity to make sure Liz would be completely safe once and for all? This time he would be sure there wasn’t a mall full of people to stop him. When he finally paid Jake back for all that had been done to Liz and him, it would be on his own terms. He needed to find his tormentor, and Joe was going to be the one to tell him where to look.

Worrying that his elderly friend may awaken at any moment, Max decided to take Joe back to his room to interrogate him. Since Ginny had managed to sleep through the entire confrontation, he saw no need to let her know how close she had come to being harmed. Wasting no time, he picked Joe up and tossed him over his shoulder, the adrenaline pumping through his veins making the task easy work. He checked to be sure no one was watching before carrying the still unconscious man to his room, locking the door behind him and placing the deadweight body on his bed. He maintained a constant vigil over the man, keeping one hand perched and ready to strike with deadly force, until nearly an hour later, when he saw the first stirrings of life.

“What the f*ck?” Joe whispered hoarsely, bringing his hand up to rub his throat. “Where am I?” he asked, apparently confused over what had transpired.

“I stopped you from hurting Ginny,” Max said in an icy voice.

“The old lady? Sh*t, I wasn’t gonna hurt her. I just wanted her money,” he explained, too weak to move.

“Why should I believe you?”

“Look, I heard the girl at the desk talking. The old lady’s check is put in the motel’s account. They take out the rent and give her the rest in cash. Honestly, I ain’t no sicko. I just needed the money.”

“You’re not a sicko. You just lock people in car trunks and watch as others abuse them,” Max bit out.

Joe’s guiltily averted his eyes as he stuttered out, “ I…I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Max threateningly placed his hand against Joe’s neck. “Where’s Jake?” he growled with every ounce of hatred he had for the man.

For the first time Joe took a good look at the person holding him hostage. His eye widened immediately as he yelled as loudly as his damaged throat would allow. “F*CK….IT’S YOU…NO! NO! IT CAN’T BE…IT JUST CAN’T…YOU’RE DEAD…YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE DEAD!”

“Is that what he told you? He told you he killed me?” Max smirked. “The truth is that I nearly killed him. And I won’t hesitate to kill you if you don’t tell me what I want to know.”

“Hey, man…I’m sorry. I never wanted to take you with us in the first place,” Joe rambled out in a rasping voice. “That was all Jake’s idea….Mike and me did what we could to help you, but you don’t cross Jake…”

“Where is he?” Max demanded evenly.

“I don’t know.”

“You’re lying.”

“I swear to God I’m tellin’ the truth. After he killed…supposedly killed you…he wanted to head back here…Mike and I came with him, but when we found out he planned to go after that girl of yours we told him we wanted to bail…he almost blew my head off, but he told me to go…I ain’t seen him in about two weeks. That’s why I was gonna take the old lady’s money…he’s crazy and I want to get as far away from him as I can, ” the man said honestly.

“Where was he the last place you saw him?”

“At the Spaceport Motor Lodge.”

Max reached over to the nightstand and grabbed the map. Shoving it in the frightened man’s face, he ordered, “Show me.”

Joe took the folded sheet of paper and tried to hold it steady, his hands shaking uncontrollably. “Um, it’s by 285….here,” he pointed as closely as his trembling fingers would permit. “A little off the frontage road.”

Max studied the map carefully, memorizing the path he would need to take. “Is he still driving the white Chevrolet Malibu?”

Joe nodded.

There was silence in the room as Max digested this new information.

“Can I ask you something, man?”


“If Jake didn’t kill you, how come you didn’t go to the cops?”

“I have my reasons,” Max answered cryptically, the edge in his voice making it obvious that this was the only answer he would give. “Just like I have my reasons for not calling the police on you.”

“You’re gonna let me go?”

“It’s not quite that easy. There are some conditions to your release.”

“Like what?” Joe asked warily.

“As soon as I let you go, you are going to check out of this motel and leave immediately. I don’t care if you have to walk, you leave town today. If I see you anywhere near here, I will kill you without a second thought. And if I find out that you have told Jake anything about seeing me, I will hunt you down and make you die a slow painful death. There will be no place you can hide from me. Do you understand?”

There was something in the look of Max’s eyes that told Joe this kid was perfectly capable of carrying out the threats he was making. This was not the same kid Jake had ordered into the trunk those few months ago. “Believe me. I ain’t gonna go anywhere near him. And if you’re as smart as you look, neither will you.”

“I am no longer afraid of Jake.”

“Well you should be.”

Max slowly shook his head in disagreement. “There is nothing he can do to harm me now, and I’m going to make sure that he never hurts anyone else ever again.”

An involuntary shudder shook Joe’s body, for he didn’t doubt the young man’s words one bit.

Once Joe’s strength had recovered enough for him to walk, Max escorted the man back to his room. Joe gathered up his meager belongings in the tense silence, casting nervous glances at the dark-haired kid as he worked. With the short hairstyle and confident stance the boy was now sporting, Joe wanted to ask him what had made him change. How did a scared mangy mute become a clean-cut, aggressive young man, determined to carry out his own personal form of justice?

The question would remain unanswered since Joe didn’t want to do anything that might focus the youth’s brewing anger on him. Max silently stood by as Joe checked out of the room, then followed the still-intimidated man as he walked to the Greyhound Bus station. Finding that the hundred dollars he had would take him as far as San Antonio with two transfers and two dollars to spare, Joe bought a ticket for the 12:30 bus and then had to run to make sure he didn’t miss it. Max didn’t leave until the bus had disappeared from view.

It had taken Max another half-hour to walk to the Spaceport Motor Lodge on the north end of town, even with the thought of finally ending this mess motivating his steps. As he approached the one-story building he studied the parking lot for any sign of the white Malibu. Not seeing it among the cars in the lot, he made his way to a field of tall grass at the rear of the property and settled in to wait for his nemesis to return. Seventeen hours later, when his unblinking eyes had seen the tenants of each and every room come and go at least twice, he stood up and headed back to his own room at the Regent. It was obvious that Jake was no longer a resident of the Spaceport Motor Lodge.

Liz lay awake in her bed, the tears trickling down the sides of her face following the same path as the ones she had cried earlier. It had been upsetting enough to lose the special connection her lovemaking with Max had created, but to have him not show up at the library to meet her had been heartbreaking. She had waited for a little over three hours with baited breath, each minute that loudly ticked away on the large clock above the circulation desk seeming like an eternity. Several times she had paced both floors of the building in search of him, even venturing outside twice in case he had misinterpreted her directions.

The ache to leave and go to the motel had been staggering, but she knew she wouldn’t get far with either her parents’ or Mr. Delgado’s watchful eyes perusing her from across the street. Instead she had returned to one of the long tables on the main floor, her attempt to study in the absence of her mate nothing more than a useless diversion. When it was apparent that he was not going to meet her, she walked back home and locked herself away in her room to mourn, fearing that the intense anger she had felt from him for
most of the day was somehow directed at her.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 10-Jul-2002 9:42:21 AM ]
posted on 14-Jul-2002 1:41:28 PM by SansuCry
Chapter 65

It wasn’t until Max opened the door to his room and saw the bright red numbers on the nightstand clock that he realized how long he’d been gone. He had been so focused on finding Jake that he had completely lost track of time. At first he thought the numbers that read 6:45 meant he had been gone some seven hours, but as he noticed the beginnings of another new day he was shocked to discover he had been gone almost nineteen hours.


If it hadn’t been for her note to him, he most likely wouldn’t have discovered Ginny’s opened door and the threat that lay behind it. Although he was certain Joe would not have harmed the elderly woman on purpose, even an accidental injury could have proven fatal for such a frail old body. Carrie had possibly saved Ginny’s life, and in the process the girl and her note had been completely forgotten. Max didn’t want his friend to think he had intentionally ignored her, so he would have to tell her what had transpired without revealing too many details. He wanted to make sure he caught her before she left, but it was probably too early to go see her now. He would wait an hour or so before going to her room, leaving his curtains open she he could watch for her if she departed sooner than that.


Not only had she remained safe but she also had no idea she was in danger in the first place. He wanted to check up on her later to be sure she was all right, especially since he had missed his lunch date with her once again. She had forgiven him for his last minute cancellation on Tuesday, but would she be as understanding about his Wednesday absence? He couldn’t very well tell her that he had chosen to sit in a field of grass over sharing a meal with her. He would not stand her up today.

Liz. Oh God, Liz.

He had intended on making their library meeting his covert farewell. After seeing the damage he had wrought on her Sunday he had vowed to himself to never lay a hand on her again. The only way that could happen would be for him to leave her, because any time she was near him the attraction was just too strong. He couldn’t not touch her.

Then Juanita had given him that warning and his plans had changed in a heartbeat. He thought having Joe to tell him exactly where to look for Jake had been some kind of lucky break, but the confirmation that the deranged man really was after his mate had been devastating. Since that moment, every ounce of his concentration had been centered on protecting her from the psychotic man who had attacked her once and planned on doing so again. In the process he had blocked every other need and thought from his mind, including Liz’s emotions. He had been so certain that Jake would show up at the Spaceport Lodge that it had never occurred to him that the lunatic could have harmed his Beauty during the hours he lay in wait, his own single-mindedness interfering with his only existing link to her.

As he continued to reorient himself, the needs he had been suppressing hit him full-force. Food. Bathroom. Sleep. However, the dull ache coming from Liz was the most crushing of all. He knew that if he allowed himself to continue sensing her feelings after he left her, this kind of pain would be his constant companion and his punishment for growing close to her. At least by being able to suppress and block his own feelings from her she would never know that his pain was a hundred times greater. He couldn’t think about that now, though.

In spite of his pledge to himself he ached to go see in person that she was unharmed, but he knew that would only complicate things. At least he knew she was still safe, and he was secure in the knowledge that Michael and Isabelle would be protecting her as well. Instead he would continue with his original plans to depart, watching over her from the shadows that he knew so well while continuing his mission to eliminate the threat of Jake. Until he was ready to leave, he would avoid having any contact with his Beauty, no matter how fiercely her soul called out for his.

Although he couldn’t take the time to sleep, he used the bathroom and grabbed a bowl of cereal, silently wondering whether it would be the last meal he ate in the small room that had become his home. He would shower, go see what Carrie had wanted, clean the rooms as usual so Juanita would not grow suspicious, have lunch with Ginny to make amends for his previous day’s absence, retrieve the journal pages from the storage unit, and decide which of his few possessions to take with him. Then in the dark of night, he would begin blocking his emotions entirely and relinquish his role as Liz’s mate once and for all. Soon he would be nothing more than a memory.

“Please, Maria?” Liz begged her best friend as they sat at the lunch table. “I’m really worried about him. You know I wouldn’t ask you to do this if I could do it myself.”

Maria wanted to reassure her friend. “Liz, I think you’re just being paranoid. I don’t think he stood you up on purpose. He probably got scared at the idea of walking through town by himself and chickened out.”

“That’s what I keep telling myself, ‘ria, but I know something’s wrong. I can still sense his emotions, even if I can’t communicate with him, and I don’t like what I’ve been feeling. Please? I just need to know he’s all right.”

Maria sighed. She didn’t like to see her best friend so upset, and if she could do something to help then she couldn’t say no. “Fine. I’ll go see him right after school, and then I’ll come to the Crashdown and give you a report,” she explained, knowing that Liz would be downstairs since this was one of the shifts she was working to make up for Sunday.

“Thanks a million, Maria,” Liz said honestly. Taking her friend’s hand, she smiled and said, “I hope you know how much you mean to me. There is no way I could have survived the past year without you. I don’t want you to think I’m blowing you off just because I spend time with Max…”

“Liz, this is me, here. In case you’ve forgotten, I’m the one who used to feel guilty for spending so much time with Spaceboy, so I guess you can say we’re even. I just wish I hadn’t needed to lie to you about his other-worldly status.”

“I would have done the same thing if I had been in your shoes. Remember when you first asked me about the necklace Max gave me? I told you Grandma Claudia gave it to me, right?”

Maria nodded her head as she noticed for the first time that the cherished possession was no longer around Liz’s neck. “So where is it, anyway?”

Liz’s face flushed involuntarily. “Um, I lost it Sunday. Max found it after I left and was supposed to give it to me yesterday. I really feel naked without it, so maybe you can get it back from him today.”


“Thanks. Hey, where has Isabelle been? Did her lunch period get switched?”

“No. She’s one of those student greeters. With the new semester starting, she volunteered to show some new kids around on her lunch. She should be back next week.”

Liz wistfully wondered whether Max would ever be one of those new kids.

Max methodically searched the files in the fourth cabinet, his frustration growing with each drawer he went through. He had tried so hard to keep tabs on where he had put those pages, but with all the arranging and rearranging that went on that day he had eventually lost track. So now he was forced to go through each drawer of each cabinet file by file, hoping to locate what he wanted without taking too much more time. The events of the previous few hours had been unexpected to say the least, so the need to complete this part of his plan had taken on a new urgency.

As he reached the back of the drawer, he growled out in frustration. He didn’t have time for this. He yanked open the next drawer. The files were packed in so tightly that he pulled out the first one to make more room to search. The edge of one of the dozens of pieces of paper inside sliced his thumb open, the sudden pain causing him to drop the thick folder. Papers rained down everywhere. It was just enough to snap the fragile hold he had kept over his emotions for most of the day. Grabbing another of the files out of the drawer he threw it across the room in a futile attempt to relieve his unbearable anguish. Over and over he repeated the desperate action until the drawer was empty, his body finally sinking to the floor as he surrendered to the physical and mental exhaustion that threatened to consume him. Grasping handfuls of his own hair as if that could stop his tortured thoughts he wept hysterically, mourning the uselessness of his life.

“Max?” Maria called out as she knocked on his door.

When he didn’t respond, she knocked and called out two more times.

She hesitantly took out the key Liz had given her. She didn’t really like the idea of going into the room uninvited, but her friend had insisted she take it, arguing that Max may be unable to answer the door. Slowly she put the key in the lock and turned the knob.

Pushing the door open, she observed that nothing seemed too out of place. The bed was neatly made, and an empty bowl sat on top of the microwave. It was obvious that Max was not currently in the room and may not have been for some time. Feeling like an intruder, Maria turned to leave when she spotted a piece of paper on the table. It looked like a note. Hoping it might give her a clue as to where Max was, she went over and read it.


Can you stop by my room some time this morning? I have to ask you something.


Maria’s heart sank. Wasn’t Carrie the prostitute Liz had confronted? Why would a prostitute be asking Max to come to her room? Liz had said she didn’t like the feelings she had been getting from him, and if what Maria suspected were true, it would certainly explain why. The blonde gave out a dismayed moan as she questioned why she had to be the one to come across this information. Should she tell Liz about this or should she just pretend she hadn’t seen the note?

Max seemed to be so in love with Liz that it was almost unimaginable to think that he would cheat on her in any way, but it would certainly explain why he had not bothered to show up at the library yesterday. Maybe that was the real reason behind Liz losing her deep mental connection to him. If he had the same wanton need for sex that Liz seemed to have lately, then perhaps in Liz’s absence he had sought out a willing, available participant. He wouldn’t be the first guy to do so…

Maria shook the thoughts from her head. This was Max, for God’s sake. He was totally, hopelessly in love with her best friend. He would never do anything to hurt Liz. Then again, when Liz had argued the same point just a few short days ago, hadn’t she been the one to say that they didn’t really know what Max was capable of? She decided she would go to Liz and give an unbiased report on what she had found before thinking the worst of Max. If Liz thought there was anything going on between him and Carrie, it would be written all over her face.

Spying Liz’s necklace on the nightstand, she debated whether or not she should take it. Max had given it to Liz as a gift, so technically it was Liz’s no matter what happened. Grabbing it quickly, she stalked from the room, locking the door behind her as she left to give her friend the disconcerting news.

Max woke up with a start, trying to take in his strange surroundings in the pitch black. Realizing he was still in the storage unit, he cursed himself for falling asleep. He didn’t know how long he had been there, and consequently he hadn’t the slightest idea of what time it was. He only knew from the darkness and lack of warmth that the sun had disappeared long ago.

His eyes adjusting to the minuscule amount of light in the room, he surveyed the mess around him. He couldn’t believe he had let himself lose control once again. He regretted that Isabelle and her family would have to clean up the room, but he could not stay there a moment longer. It was time to get back to the motel so he could leave. The pages would have to remain in one of those files, and if his difficulties in finding them had been any indication, they may never be found.

He slowly made his way in the dark until he reached the door, quickly exiting the unit and melting into the shadows to begin his journey back to the motel. He walked purposefully, his mind reeling with the inevitable events of the past few days. It was apparent that his abilities to control his impulses were weakening, so as he walked he made a mental list of what things he would pack so that he could leave the motel as soon as possible. His clothing obviously, and what was left of the non-perishable food. Soon he might be eating out of garbage cans again. The microwave would definitely stay. The books stay…except maybe one. The beautiful photos of Liz…

He came to a dead stop as he emerged from the shadows of some tall buildings to cut across a small parking lot half filled with cars. It was a motel. His eyes carefully took in each of the vehicles, attempting to match any of them to the one burned into his memory. It was a longshot, but he had to rule out the possibility for certain.

Then he saw it. There, among a set of four bumpers, was a faded sticker. Thornton’s Bass & Gill Club. Best Bass In Town. Next to the writing was a picture of a fish. The fish he saw every time he had been put into that trunk.

He was not prepared for the onslaught of emotions that were surging inside him with each step he made towards the car.

* I think it’s time we took a little road trip *

* I bet she’s f*cking some other guy right now *

* She owes me a piece of pussy, and I plan to collect *

* And this time, you won’t be there to save her *

He would get rid of Jake once and for all.

* Maybe I’ll bring you with me. Make you watch as I teach your little whore what a real man feels like *

* I hope that little bitch was worth your life *

Such intense hate for this man who had given him everything he ever wanted and taken it away all at the same time, and not even known it.

As the rawness of his hatred took over a sudden white flash lit up the night. The car burst into flames and moments later, a fireball hotter and brighter than the blazing afternoon sun engulfed the vehicles around it. Max stumbled backwards as the heat of the blast hit him, the accompanying explosion reverberating in every direction in the cool desert air. He took several shallow breaths to avoid scorching his lungs as the reality of what he had done hit him.

“Hey! You! What the f*ck are you doing?” a man called out as he flew out of his second floor room.

Max looked around frantically as people began filtering out of their rooms, awakened by the earth-shattering noise.

He wanted to get to Jake.

Had to find him.

Needed to kill him before he had a chance to hurt his mate.

“What’s going on?”

“Stop him! Stop that guy!”

“Oh my God! My car!”

There were too many others, too many of Them around, and none of Them was Jake.

He didn’t care. They were still Them. If he had to hurt Them to get to Jake, then he…

“Mommy, I’m scared,” a tiny voice wailed.

He did the only thing he could do.

He ran.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 14-Jul-2002 1:44:50 PM ]
posted on 16-Jul-2002 8:21:34 PM by SansuCry
NC-17 Part

Chapter 66 (NC-17)

He did the only thing he could do.

He ran.

To the last place he should go and the only place he could be.

When Liz woke up, her heart was racing and she was covered with perspiration. She had not slept well for the second night in a row, and she was not surprised that once she had fallen asleep she was haunted by a nightmare. She only wished she could remember it. Actually if she admitted it, she hadn’t had a good night’s sleep for several days now. Every time she closed her eyes she saw the look of horror on Max’s face when he had spied her shredded uniform and discovered his teeth marks on her body. She had done her best to reassure him that he hadn’t hurt her, but she got the feeling that he didn’t believe her. Still, she knew he never would have done those things against her will.

Things hadn’t felt quite right since then, and at first she worried that maybe the alcohol he had consumed was having some kind of long-term effect on him. He had made such progress since he first showed up in her bedroom a little over six weeks ago. Perhaps his current state of turmoil had more to do with the drastic changes he had gone through in that time. The isolated way he had spent most of his life had suddenly disappeared and had been replaced by the opportunity to be a part of the immense world around him. It could just be a case of too much too soon. She had been able to tell that he was trying to hide or suppress his feelings from her, and she began to wonder whether he was deliberately creating the intense bursts of anger and agony to mask his true feelings, afraid that she would be disappointed with him. Reminding herself that he had to move at his own pace, she would make it a point to not pressure him about going to school.

She had to also learn to accept that he needed to have his own friends, no matter how distasteful she might find them. Ginny and the boys as well as their mother were nice people, and she had no qualms about the positive influence they would have on his life. Carrie, on the other hand, was a different story altogether. Nothing good could come from a friendship with her. From the moment Max had let Liz see the brazen girl literally forcing herself on him, she had developed an instant resentment towards the prostitute. Her other two encounters with the young woman only fortified that dislike. When she finally dragged out of Maria that there was a note from Carrie in Max’s room, she couldn’t help but get a little jealous. Max knew how she felt about the girl, so why did he have to go and befriend her of all people? She could only pray that the note and Max’s absence from the library were not related in any way. If she discovered that he had forgotten about her because he was with Carrie, she wasn’t sure how she would react. A nagging little voice in the back of her head would present her with several versions of the worst case scenario regarding that note, then she would be hit with a wave of guilt for letting herself think Max could do such a thing to her. He was her committed mate, after all.

She looked over at the clock. 5:30 a.m. It was still dark out, despite that fact that the days were growing longer. Monday was Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday, so if she could manage to get through school today, she would have a three-day weekend to look forward to. She only had a few more days left of her grounding, and then she could go to Max and get this whole library mess straightened out. She was sure the note from Carrie had been nothing more than a request from one friend to another.

Realizing there was no point in staying in bed when she couldn’t sleep, she decided to take a shower and start her day. Maybe if she could force herself to concentrate she could begin writing that paper on the change in attitude towards politicians in light of the Watergate scandal.

As the warm water ran across her body, she was puzzled that her intense physical need for Max had subsided the past few days. With her grounding it would have been an unbearable torture to have such a craving for him and not be able to do anything about it. Yet that little nagging voice suggested several possible reasons why that craving had diminished, all of them involving Carrie. Pushing the thoughts from her mind she stepped out of the shower and dried her hair with the towel as best she could before wrapping it around her body. She decided to pick out her clothes and go back to the bathroom to dress in the warmth of the small room. Opening the door to make a mad dash into the chilly bedroom her heart caught in her throat as she stifled a cry of surprise.

“Max?” she asked, immediately knowing that something was terribly wrong.

She wanted to ask him a hundred questions. Where had he been? Why had he not shown up at the library? Why had Carrie wanted to see him? One look into his eyes and she knew that anything she wanted to ask him would have to wait.

He was trembling, and it was obvious he had been frightened by something.

She walked over to him slowly, afraid that he might bolt out the window if she moved too fast. She reached out to caress his face and he turned to avoid her touch, his lashes fluttering over his cheeks as he suddenly refused to look at her. She took a step closer and tried again, this time reaching out with both her hands, the gesture forcing him to lean into one of them. A tear trickled down his cheek as he cringed at the contact, and she wondered whether her touch was hurting him somehow.

Just as she began to withdraw her hands from his face he grabbed her wrists abruptly, his eyes now pleading for her to not let him go. A swarm of emotions flowed through her, and it only took her a second to realize that the emotions she had been feeling from him were genuine. The only difference was that they were so much more turbulent than she had sensed before.

Needing to comfort him, she tightened her grasp and tilted her head up to give him a tender kiss. The second her lips touched his he plunged his tongue deep into the sweet recesses of her mouth as a wave of frenzied surrender filled her senses. He pulled her body against him, breaking the inflamed kiss to impetuously cover her face and neck with his roving lips.

She moaned with deep satisfaction as he surrounded her, his hands and mouth inciting a sensual fire that scorched her to her core. He wasted no time carrying her to the bed, hastily removing her towel before resting his weight over her. Too consumed by the raw desire rapidly spreading throughout her body, she barely heard his silently whispered chant.

‘I don’t want to remember. Please help me forget. I just want to forget.’

While he continued to fervently sample every ounce of her flesh he could reach, she eagerly grabbed for the top of his jeans, unbuttoning them and pushing them down his hips as fast as she could. Using her feet to get them past his knees she did the same with his boxers, her body quivering with excitement when she saw how ready he was to take her.

As his erection swept against her awaiting heat he ceased his ministrations to gaze down at her impassioned face. Their eyes locked together in one frenetic moment, the physical need to be one crushing every other thought from their minds. With a vehemence neither had ever before experienced, he buried himself as deep inside her as he could be, instinctually muffling their euphoric cries with a ravenous kiss. He immediately began to move within her, his measured strokes quickly deteriorating into zealous thrusts as the numbing rapture that permeated their connection destroyed any restraint he may have had.

‘N’ahn diem Zan.’

She knew he was speaking Antarian, and for a fleeting instant she thought she understood the meaning behind the words. The moment was short-lived, however, as another wave of soul-stirring bliss surged throughout their connection, striking any semblance of thought from her mind as her insatiable body enticed her to concentrate purely on the exhilarating sensations her lover was stirring inside of her.

Just when she thought she couldn’t stand a minute more of their impetuous union, he lowered his left hand to his side, obsessively seeking out the symbol that marked her as his mate. Covering her hip with his palm, his thoughts echoed in her mind.

‘K’jien da nak. Cruson. Bra’kon. Q’ero. H’ia. Ot li uv mo’tan.’

This time she definitely knew what the words meant. He had spoken them to her before, in English: I commit myself only to you--heart, mind, body and soul—from now until the end of time.

Her eyes never leaving his, she took a steadying breath and spoke the words aloud.

“K’jien da nak. Cruson. Bra’kon. Q’ero. H’ia. Ot li uv mo’tan.”

He was unable to hold his eyes open at the sound of her words, and tears began to drop from his lashes. They fell onto her cheek as she turned her head to kiss his wrist, closing her own eyes before pressing her lips to the commitment symbol resting alongside her face.

The innocent gesture sent an unexpected tremor through their connection as a pattern of colors grew and swirled behind her eyelids. The accompanying ecstasy brought her breathing to a standstill and as her muscles tightened around him, she felt him explode inside of her. His seed continued to saturate her womb while the rainbowed hues coalesced into a flash of white light before she faded into blackness.

posted on 19-Jul-2002 8:00:39 PM by SansuCry
Don't hate me because I'm me 'cuz I'm a Dreamer.

Chapter 67

“Liz! Answer me, young lady.”

Liz slowly stretched as she stirred, her thoroughly satiated body in no hurry to move.

“Elizabeth, if you’re in there, open this door immediately.” The sound of her mother’s voice suddenly penetrated her contented haze.

Her mother? Oh sh*t! Max had to get out of here. As she sat up to wake him, she discovered that he was already gone. She didn’t know whether to thank the Lord or curse under her breath. She never got to find out what had scared him so badly, nor had she been able to ask him any of the questions that had been bothering her these past few days. And after what had just happened, she now had about a dozen new questions to ask as well.

The knob jiggled, the locked position preventing any actual back and forth movement.

Jumping up and grabbing the towel from where it had been so haphazardly thrown, Liz tried to conceal the look of utter satisfaction that continued to grace her features. Seeing the small stain on her sheets where a small amount of menstrual blood had mingled with Max’s semen, she formulated a plan in her head and hoped her mother didn’t examine the spot too carefully. Her parents were already suspicious, so she had to play this very cool. She hoped she could pull it off.

She unlocked the door and cracked it just enough to poke her head out. “What’s wrong, Mom?”

“You tell me, Liz. I thought I heard you cry out, and when I come to investigate you take forever to open this door?”

“Mom, it was nothing…”

Before Liz could get out another word her father swept into the hallway and pushed past her mother, forcing her bedroom door open in the process.

“Dad! What are you doing?” she anxiously begged as she pulled the towel around her even tighter to ward off the breeze created by her father’s hurried entry.

He surveyed the room a few times before his eyes bore down on her. “What are you hiding, Liz?”

“I’m not hiding anything,” she said honestly, praying Max wouldn’t unexpectedly come walking out of the bathroom.

“Then what exactly is going on?” he demanded impatiently.

Liz gave her father an embarrassed look as she said quietly. “If you must know, I had a little accident.” Pointing to her bed, she continued as though it she were telling him the most mortifying thing in the world. “I got some blood on my sheets from my period. I wanted to get cleaned up, so I must have been in the shower when you were calling me. If you don’t believe me, go look for yourself.” When her father made no move towards the bed, she went for that extra touch of guilt. “Could you please go now, Dad. This is humiliating enough. I don’t really need you here to make it worse.”

Jeff Parker turned five shades of red as he slunk out of Liz’s room. Here he had thought the worst of his daughter when it was nothing more than female problems. His wife wasn’t going to let him forget this one any time soon.

Once he was gone, Nancy wrapped her arm around her growing daughter. As much as she hated to admit it, Liz was no longer her little baby. She was becoming a beautiful young woman. Although she was sufficiently worried about her girl, she didn’t think Jeff’s heavy-handed approach was the best way to find out what was going on in Liz’s life. She figured that as long as Liz was safe, her child should be allowed to have her secrets until she was ready to share them. All Nancy could hope was that the lessons she and Jeff had tried to instill in their daughter would prevent Liz from making any harmful mistakes.

“I’m so sorry, honey. You know how your father gets sometimes. Why don’t you finish dressing? I’ll take care of the sheets for you.”

“No, Mom. Really, I can handle it,” Liz said as she timidly looked up at her more reasonable parent. “Can you just take them out of the dryer for me? I’ll probably be heading to school by the time they’re done.”

Her mother gave her a kiss on the forehead as she stroked her damp hair. Regretting that her overreaction had caused such embarrassment for her daughter, she acquiesced. “Sure, sweetie. Whatever you want.”

“Thanks Mom,” Liz said as she watched her mother leave the room, closing the door behind her. Liz let out a huge sigh of relief. They had bought it. She quietly dashed to the bathroom in the hope that Max was actually hiding in there, but when she opened the door the room was empty, the mirror still coated with a residual layer of moisture from her shower. He was really gone.

Gathering her clothes she dressed quickly and stripped away the incriminating evidence of her passionate encounter before running downstairs to start the load. She talked Jose into making her a double order of French toast, and then took it upstairs to eat it while sitting out on her balcony.

She was so happy that Max was safe, yet she desperately wanted to know why he had been so frightened earlier. The minute he had touched her, the potent craving to be one with him had returned with a vengeance, and she was helpless to resist the powerful melody of his soul calling out to hers. She knew that when they finally made love with no barriers between them it would be pure heaven, but she hadn’t realized that their completion would be so stimulating that she would end up passing out. Words simply couldn’t describe what magnificent torture the whole experience had been for her. She was so glad that she had been on the pill for a sufficient amount of time that they would never need to use condoms again. She doubted that she could go back to having anything obstruct the sensation of her lover moving freely within her. Feeling him come inside her had felt so right, like she had been waiting for that moment her whole life. She was certain it had been the same for Max, but somehow she wished she could hear it straight from him. A smile spread across her face as she remembered that she could hear it from him.

‘I love you, my mate,’ she called out to him with every ounce of her affection.

She was greeted with silence.

She felt a wave of relief wash over her, and she knew it had come from him. Why wouldn’t he answer her?



Maybe they were still restricted to only sensing each other’s feelings. She had assumed that their connection had faded because they hadn’t made love in a while, but that situation had just been remedied in a pretty major way. She had even understood the Antarian he had lovingly whispered to her as a reaffirmation of his commitment. Of course they had been touching at the time, so it was possible that their long-distant connection just didn’t exist anymore. The thought saddened her greatly. Perhaps they just needed to make love a few more times before it would return. The idea definitely had some merit. They would just have to find some time to experiment.

She finished her breakfast and went back inside her room. Spying the pendant on her dresser, she picked it up and examined it. The leather cord had been torn in half sometime during what she liked to call their ‘drunken lovefest’ and when she had tried to fix it by tying the ends together, the inflexibility of the material kept making it come undone. Finally she had put some dabs of glue on the knot and held it as it dried, but she had wanted to wait a little longer before trying to wear it. She glanced at the clock on her nightstand, and deciding that twelve hours should be more than enough time for it to be completely repaired, she carefully slid it over her head. There was almost an hour remaining before she had to leave for school, so she sat down at her laptop to begin that Watergate paper. By the time she left for her first class, her mind had been so full of her daydreams of Max that the computer screen had remained blank.

‘I love you, my mate,’ her voice echoed in his mind. He collapsed to the floor of his room as relief flooded over him. She was alive. She was able to speak. She would survive.

He almost replied but quickly decided against it. If he returned her affection now he knew he would never be able to leave her. And after what had just happened, that was not an option.


Going to her, touching her, making love to her had been the last thing he had wanted to do. But somehow after unintentionally blowing up Jake’s car and nearly attacking a motel full of people, he had blindly run away and straight to her. It wasn’t until she had reached out to him that he realized where he was, as if some divine power had led him there. He had tried to not give in to her gentle caress, but after she had forced the contact he simply couldn’t resist her, just as he had feared. Suddenly he wanted to forget everything but becoming one with her. If only changing who he was came as easily as loving her did...

The intensity of their lovemaking had rapidly escalated to a fervent pitch, and as they neared their completion he had instinctively reached for the symbol that represented his commitment to her. He silently whispered the life-altering words in Antarian, not wanting to reveal to her what he was saying. It had all but broken his heart when she repeated the words aloud, fully understanding their meaning. Her own declaration of love was all it had taken for him to lose complete control, and as he began to fill her with his seed a brilliant white flash instantly overwhelmed their connection. He figured out too late that it wasn’t the first time he had experienced the surge of energy associated with that luminous spark. Before he could even attempt to rein it in, his world had faded into blackness.

When the darkness finally cleared from his mind, he had awakened to find an unresponsive Liz still lying underneath him. He had immediately lifted his weight off of her and shifted to her side, the clothes bunched around his legs hampering his movements. He had grasped her limp body and gently shook it, imploring her to wake up.

Tears had instantly filled his eyes as he stared at his lifeless mate. He was certain that the powerful force behind that white flash had killed her, and he valiantly pleaded for his own demise in exchange for her safe return to this world. Not sure that he could revive her, he had placed his head on her chest to beg her forgiveness when he felt a nearly imperceptible inhalation. Carefully watching her upper body, the sight of her breasts moving in a shallow rhythm had never been more beautiful. She was alive.

But she was still unconscious. He had begun to meticulously examine her for any obvious damage when he spied the blood on the sheet, a new surge of grief instantly filling his heart. Stumbling off the bed and away from her in shock, he had chanced a look at his own form. He had been so desperate to find refuge in her welcoming body that he had completely forgotten about using a condom, and that indiscretion had caused the red tinge that covered his softened member. He had cried out in disbelief, his mind suddenly awash with the guilty knowledge that his worst nightmare had come true. The evidence had been right there before him, so there could be no doubt this time. He had physically injured her.

Reeling from the reality of the situation, he had been at a loss as to what to do. Should he try to heal her? She was still alive. If he made the attempt, would it end up killing her? Try something or do nothing? Which would bring her the least amount of additional harm?

Before he had had an opportunity to make the decision, a firm knock had come from the door. “Liz? Are you all right?” a female voice demanded. It was her mother.

Panic overruled any logical reasoning he may have had. Her mother would find her there and seek the help he wished he could give her. He had hastily pulled his boxers and jeans up and fastened the button before scrambling out the still-open window. At the last second, he had silently whispered to her. ‘I never should have come here, Beauty. I’m sorry for not keeping you safe.’

And then he was gone.

Which brought him to his current position. Liz had told him she loved him, so obviously he had not harmed her too severely. But the extent of her injuries was irrelevant. That he was capable of accidentally infusing her with such a tremendous amount of uncontrollable energy was all the evidence he needed to put aside any foolish notion that he could have a life with her. If he continued to pretend he was something other that what he truly was, it would only be a matter of time before the acts that brought him the greatest joy would end in the most devastating of sorrows.

His resolve firmly in place once again, he stood up as he turned his attention back to the one problem that prevented him from getting as far away from her as possible. Jake. He had to get back to that motel before the psychotic man had a chance to disappear. It had still been quite dark out when the explosion had happened, so if he changed clothes and hung back from the crowd that certainly had gathered by now, he was sure no one would recognize him. Changing quickly, he grabbed his jacket and followed the path towards the storage unit.

Just as he thought, many of the motel patrons were out in the lot, milling about and giving their individual versions of the morning’s events to the police. He decided to remain across the street in the alley next to a strip mall, close enough to see the people yet far enough away to avoid detection. He was much calmer now than he had been while waiting for Jake at the Spaceport Lodge. He was still focused on his task yet fully aware of Liz’s thoughts and emotions. Jake was a creature of the night and would most likely try to go after her at the Crashdown, so he was certain she’d be safe at school with Michael and Isabelle watching out for her. He doubted even Jake would be stupid enough to go after her in broad daylight with so many people around. If the lunatic did try, Max had no doubt he would know it in an instant.

He carefully examined each of the motel guests in the lot, checking and rechecking to be sure none of them was the man he was seeking. He watched and waited for over an hour as the crowd slowly disbursed with still no sign of Jake. He thought that maybe he should go to the school to make sure Liz arrived safely, but deep inside he knew she was fine. She actually seemed quite happy, apparently unaware of how close she had come to dying.

After another half-hour of watching the motel, Max was beginning to think that maybe he had made a mistake. Perhaps Jake had no longer been driving the car. He was positive that the vehicle had been stolen in the first place, so it wouldn’t be inconceivable that Jake traded it away for a different mode of transportation. Joe was out of the picture, but there was still a chance that Mike could be the one holed up across the street instead of Jake.

His thoughts were interrupted by a cigarette butt rolling towards his feet. Looking over to glare at the woman who had carelessly discarded it, his eyes automatically settled on the person entering the store behind her. Even though the lanky man had a bandanna covering most of his hair, Max knew who it was all too well. Jake was less than five feet away from him.

He had expected to feel all sorts of things upon seeing his tormentor again, but the anger he felt now was different from when he had seen the man’s car and destroyed it. He still knew that the only way to be sure Liz would remain safe would be to kill Jake, but his motives now had nothing to do with revenge and everything to do with protecting her.

Planning and calculating his moves, he stood up from where he had been leaning against the building and followed Jake into the store at a casual distance. He found the man easily, searching the cases of beer in the rear aisle of the liquor store. He was thankful that it was a relatively isolated area. Taking a few deep breaths, he steeled himself to confront the person who had caused him so many problems.

He walked up to the man with a determined stride and simply stared at him, amazed that he felt no fear after all that the sick man had done to him. Jake no longer had the upper hand.

“What the f*ck do you want?” the man growled as his gaze moved from the store display to the kid who had come to stand next to him.

“You,” Max said evenly.

“Sorry kid. I don’t swing that way,” he said in an irritated tone as he returned his attention back to the beer cases.

“Believe me. I’m well aware of that.”

“So then what’s your problem?” Jake asked, his growing frustration obvious in his voice.

“You don’t know who I am?” Max asked cryptically.

“Should I?” he asked as he met Max’s stare head on.

“I’ll give you a little hint. We took a road trip together, although I hate to tell you the view from the trunk leaves a lot to be desired,” Max managed to say unemotionally.

Jake’s eyes widened momentarily before he broke out into an incriminating laugh. “So you can talk, you little prick. I told the boys you were faking it.”

Max lowered his voice. “Just like you faked my death to keep them in line?”

Jake gave him a chilling stare as he also began to speak in hushed tones. “Have no doubt, my friend. The only reason you aren’t dead now is because my gun misfired.”

Max smiled inwardly. The man had no idea that he had actually been attacked by an alien. He could definitely use this to his advantage. “Do you want to test that theory?”

Jake gave a deep, disbelieving bellow before he arrogantly proclaimed. “You can’t possibly be serious. You don’t stand a chance against me, not matter what the circumstances are.”

The stubborn man was playing right into his hands. Max challenged, “Then what are you afraid of?”

“What? You expect me to shoot you right here in the store?” Jake demanded as his hand went to the waistband of his jeans, revealing the gun hidden there. He quickly hid it as another customer slid past the former captor and his captive.

Max waited until the woman was out of earshot before continuing. With an unflinching voice, he suggested, “Even you’re not that stupid. It’s not smart to have any witnesses, so why don’t we just finish things where they started? For old times’ sake? I will meet you at the house you took me from. Tomorrow, at noon. That should give you enough time to get your affairs in order and find a car to replace the one I destroyed this morning.”

“How do I know the cops won’t be waiting there to arrest me?” Jake asked suspiciously.

“If I were going to involve the authorities, do you think I would have blown up your car? I could have easily walked over there and told them where you were and that you are the one who attacked the waitresses at the Launch Pad.”

“You can’t prove I had anything to do with those two girls,” Jake countered.

“Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, I’m sure they would have found some reason to imprison you.” Max gave him a feral grin. “I don’t want you in jail. I want you dead.”

“You’ve sure turned into one cocky son of a b*tch, haven’t you,” Jake observed as he carefully examined Max. “I wouldn’t be too overconfident if I were you.”

“Why not? I’ve got nothing to lose,” Max answered suggestively.

“What happened to that little piece of pussy you fought so hard to protect? Let me guess…she dumped your loser ass for a real man. Can’t say I blame her.”

Max wanted to hurt Jake right there for talking about his Beauty that way, but he knew the man would get what he deserved soon enough. Seeing an extra way to protect Liz, he told a half-truth. “I lost her because of you. By the time I came back to Roswell, she had already left town. I haven’t seen her since the night I stopped you from attacking her.”

“Well, cry me a f*cking river. I guess I’ve just been wasting my time here then, haven’t I?” Jake questioned daringly, seeing no point in hiding his motivation for returning to Roswell. Glaring at Max, he asked, “What makes you think I’ll show up? Why shouldn’t I just leave town, too?”

It was Max’s turn to give an arrogant reply. “Because then you would have to admit that you’re afraid of a little prick like me.”

And they both knew that is the one thing Jake would never do.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 19-Jul-2002 8:04:23 PM ]
posted on 21-Jul-2002 4:21:39 PM by SansuCry
Chapter 68

“Someone’s in a good mood today,” Maria observed as she watched her best friend dreamily staring off into space.

Liz smiled brightly. “I got to see Max,” she explained summarily, wanting to revel in the morning’s passionate encounter instead of concerning herself with all the hows and whys of Max’s frightened appearance in her room.

“So does that mean you two can do that silent talking thing again?” Maria asked suggestively.

“Well, yes and no,” Liz answered mysteriously. When Maria gave her a confused look, she clarified, “The connection is still gone, but we….uh, tried to restore it.”

“And it didn’t work?” Maria asked with concern, knowing how much Liz had missed the special bond she shared with her otherworldly boyfriend.

“Apparently not,” Liz observed, “but I think it’s just a matter of time.” Lowering her voice conspiratorially she elaborated, “I’m going to ditch Psych. class and go see him so we can try again.”

“So you still have that super-horny thing going on, huh?” Maria smirked.

“No, not really. I mean I wouldn’t turn him down by any means, but that sense of urgency doesn’t seem to be there anymore. I haven’t been climbing the walls or anything.”

“Then why don’t you just wait until your grounding is over before you see him again? It’s only a few more days, and if your folks find out that you ditched school, you’ll be grounded for life.”

“They won’t find out unless someone accidentally tells them,” Liz emphasized. “I’ll go see Max and still be home right on time.”

“And what if they’re still trailing you like they did at the library?” Maria asked, trying to be the logical one for once.

“I don’t think they are. My dad believes that he embarrassed the hell out of me this morning, so I’m sure my mom has told him to back off. Besides, we’re going to have a substitute today, so no one will even realize I’m gone.”

Maria didn’t like the sound of this at all, and she hoped Liz understood what a chance she was taking. Just to be sure her friend knew that she didn’t approve, she said, “Don’t say I didn’t warn you, chica. It’s your funeral.”

Liz would be getting out of school in an hour.

Although Max was certain that Jake had believed him about her leaving town, he wasn’t going to take any chances. If she walked home instead of riding with Maria he would secretly follow her until she was safely inside the Crashdown, where she should remain the rest of the weekend. Her mother had sounded particularly unhappy earlier in the day, so he was positive that both of her parents would be carefully guarding her until her grounding was over. By then Jake would be dead and he would be long gone.

Lost in his thoughts, he jumped from the bed when he heard a key rattling in the lock. He relaxed when he realized it must be Juanita coming to check on him.

He stood up to greet her, the gentle smile on his face instantly falling as he saw who was entering the room. “Liz? What are you doing here? You are supposed to be at school,” he said with a hint of frustration.

Liz looked at Max with surprise as she set her bookbag down. This was certainly not the reception she had expected. She reached out to wrap her arms around him. “I skipped my last class to come and see you. I missed you.”

“Do not touch me,” he said forcefully, pulling away from her.

“What?” she asked in disbelief, reaching for him again.

“I said do not touch me.” He pulled away from her and moved to the other side of the room.

“Max, what’s wrong? Why are you acting this way?” she asked. Spying the duffel bag on the bed, filled with clothes and a couple of books, she frowned. “And why are you packing your things up?”

“I am leaving,” he said quietly.

“Leaving? What do you mean you’re leaving?” she asked, sure that she had heard him incorrectly. When he didn’t answer, she insistently raised her voice. “Tell me what is going on!”

Max was at a loss for words. Things were not supposed to happen this way, and he had not planned for this eventuality. He should have just been able to disappear into the night without her knowing he was leaving. Now she was standing here before him, expectantly waiting for a response, and he had to give her one that would permanently drive her away. No matter how much it broke his heart to do so. “I cannot stay here. You have taught me all I need to know to survive on my own, and now that you have, it is time for me to leave.”

“Max, are you saying you don’t want to be with me anymore?” she scoffed, unable to hide her surprise at his bewildering statement.

“I am telling you that you are no longer my entire world. I have other people besides you now, so I do not need to be with you,” he explained.

Liz noticed that he would not look at her. Finally she stated, “I don’t believe you. You can’t even look me in the eyes right now, and the way you made love to me this morning tells me that you need me just as much as I need you.”

He forced himself to meet her challenging gaze as he spoke what was in his heart. “I should never have come to you. I never should have laid a hand on you. This morning was a mistake.”

“A mistake?” she cried out. “How could you call that a mistake? You must not have felt the same thing I did if you think that what happened this morning had anything to do with a lapse in judgment.”

“I felt exactly what you felt,” he said honestly. And it almost killed you, he silently whispered, not allowing her to hear his troubled thoughts as he averted his eyes away from her stricken face. “And I never want to feel that with you again. That is why it was a mistake.” He saw her crestfallen look out of the corner of his eye, and he knew that if he didn’t get away from her soon, he would take her in his arms and confess everything. “I will pay you the money back for the room and the clothes once I reach my destination. Now will you please leave so that I may finish packing,” he said in an icy voice as he sat down on the bed.

“Not until you tell me what is really happening here. Where are you going? And why is it I’m suddenly not enough for you?”

Max refused to meet her questioning stare this time, instead fixing his gaze on the piece of paper resting on the table. An idea instantly came to mind, one that he knew would play on one of her biggest insecurities. Better that than his own greatest fear actually coming true. One close call had been more than enough for him. “Carrie went to be with her family in Illinois. I am going to join her.”

Carrie?!” Liz spat out, a mixture of disbelief and revulsion lacing her voice. “You’re leaving me for Carrie? Why? Why her?”

He hated telling her the regretful truth. Although he had kept things from her, he had never outright lied, and he didn’t think he could start now. “Because you are no longer the only one I have connected with,” he said with as little emotion as possible, allowing her to make her own assumptions.

Liz looked at him in horror as she brought her hand up to her mouth. Shaking her head, she began, “No. I don’t believe you. You wouldn’t do that to me…you couldn’t do that to me. I’m your mate.”

He stood up from the bed and took a step towards her, barely grazing her hand with his. An image of Carrie laying underneath him, her eyes closed and her chest exposed, flashed through Liz’s mind. “Do you want me to show you what happened next?” he threatened, mimicking the demand she had made when they had discussed his first encounter with the prostitute.

“NO!” she cried as she recoiled away from him, knowing she would never survive seeing Max making love to another woman. Looking up at him through tear-soaked lashes she begged, “What about us? You committed yourself to me.”

His eyes automatically focused on the pendant hanging from her neck, too absorbed with his current task to wonder how it had come into her possession once again. “The commitment I made has no meaning for someone like me.”

Liz’s mind was reeling. She just couldn’t believe that this was happening, but the pieces were beginning to fall into place. The note from Carrie…why she and Max no longer had their verbal connection…the strange feelings she had been sensing from him… why a prostitute would suddenly give up her way of life and go back to her family…

Through the tightness of her throat, she managed to choke out, “So everything you did, everything you said…was just a bunch of lies? You made me think I was special to you…you made me believe I was beautiful….when all this time I meant nothing to you. I gave you my virginity…committed myself to you….and this is how you treat me? If you were going to do this, why didn’t you just let Jake kill me? It would have been much less painful than what you’re doing now.”

“Beauty…” he called, his own agony over her words blending with hers as he moved to embrace her, but now she was the one avoiding any physical contact.

“You stay away from me,” she shouted. “Just stay away. I don’t want to be a part of someone who could do something so vile and sadistic.” She looked around the room as though she were trapped before she gripped the sides of her head, tightly pulling on her hair as she closed her eyes and screamed, “I don’t want your pity. Get your damn feelings out of my head. Block them out of my mind, because I never want to feel another thing from you again. Then finish packing and get out of my motel room.”

He silently did as she requested, using most of his strength to suppress his own overwhelming tears and anguish. Making sure she wasn’t watching him he picked up the double picture frame and slipped it into the duffel bag, cushioning it with his socks and shirts. He gave the room a quick once-over before walking to the door and turning the handle, his reserve faltering as Liz slid to the floor and began to cry the choking sobs that he was all too familiar with. Feeling and seeing all the pain he was causing her almost convinced him to reevaluate his plan, but in his heart he knew that he needed to do the right thing.

‘Diemi diemu. It is time for me to protect you, my Beauty, once and for all,’ he silently spoke to her, softly enough that he doubted she could hear him through her pain-filled weeping.

He would take care of Jake tomorrow at noon, and then he would go to join Carrie.

posted on 22-Jul-2002 3:01:03 PM by SansuCry
OK, I just love you guys way to much to keep you suffering.....

Chapter 69

After Liz heard the motel room door shut, a new wave of sobs filled her lungs as she tried to cope with the horrible reality of Max’s relationship with Carrie. She hadn’t wanted to believe what she saw could be true, because it would mean everything she had felt in her heart for the last six months had been a lie.

Could she have really been that wrong about him? That image had left little room for doubt.

She knew at this point she had two options: continue to lay on the floor and weep over a man who obviously didn’t have the same feelings she had or get up and give herself the respect and dignity that she hadn’t received from him. Deciding that she was no man’s doormat, she slowly sat up and leaned against the wall. She took several forced breaths before standing, ready to face the world once again.

She had lost complete track of time during her agonizing confrontation with Max, and she let out a sigh of relief to discover that she could still make it home close to her usual arrival time. It would really suck to be grounded even longer over someone who didn’t even want her. She shook the thought from her head, not letting herself wallow in pity. If she were going to survive this, she would have to harden her heart to feeling any kind of emotion. It was the only way.

She picked up the bookbag from the floor, taking the room key Max had left behind along with her own. She would have to come back after her grounding was over to pick up the library books and check ‘Dave Peters’ out of Room 9A because if she didn’t leave now, her parents would definitely notice her tardiness. She took one last look around the room where she had given so much of herself before locking and closing the door behind her. Her eyes automatically looked to Carrie’s room, and a slight movement behind the closed curtains caught her attention. Were they up there right now, making fun of her gullibility? What a fool she had been to think that Max hadn’t been interested in the brazen whore.

Once she arrived home she had locked herself in her room, feigning a headache when her mother grew concerned over her bloodshot eyes. With the Parker’s permission Maria came up to visit during her seven o’clock break, and when Liz disclosed the startling news, the blonde went ballistic. Vowing to hunt down the alien who had shattered her best friend’s heart, Maria couldn’t believe that her outrageous suspicion had been so on target.

As the night wore on endlessly, the more Liz tried to not think about it, the more frequently her argument with Max played out in her head, his hurtful words digging a deeper wound with each repetition. She had hoped that it would be easier to analyze things now that the initial shock had worn off, but as her bedside clock ticked out the hours she began to realize this kind of shock would never go away. Without his emotions to fill her with a constant sense of belonging, she simple felt empty.

Perhaps it was some misguided attempt to make herself feel better, but as she mentally went over her last view of the motel room, that stupid little voice inside her head berated her for overlooking a rather glaring inconsistency in Max’s behavior given the things he had said to her. She spent the next hour convincing herself it had just been her wild imagination, but in the end she knew she wouldn’t get any rest until she went to see for herself.

So at four in the morning Liz found herself sneaking out her bedroom window, each step reminding her of both the wonderful and frightening times she had shared with Max. An involuntary shiver went through her as she climbed down into the alley, the shadows even more threatening than she remembered. Would she really have preferred to perish at the hands of Jake?

Briskly walking down the main road between the Crashdown and the motel, she couldn’t help but think that there was more to this Max/Carrie thing than met the eye. It was if he had been deliberately trying to hurt her, to make her turn on him. And if he really felt that strongly about the prostitute, why had he recommitted himself to her just hours before his planned departure? In Antarian, nonetheless, as if he didn’t want her to know that he was doing it.

Had he decided that after all the torment he had lived through, it was better to hurt her before she could conceivably hurt him? Could it possibly be that he still did not believe that she would love him unconditionally, and instead of trusting her enough to completely open up to her he had instead chosen to find comfort in the arms of someone he was not emotionally attached to? That certainly didn’t excuse what amounted to adultery, but maybe it would at least help her understand his motives…that it had nothing to do with her and everything to do with him.

She rounded the corner of the motel and a sick sense of déjà vu came over her. She had found it contemptible that anyone would mistake her for the hooker, and now her own mate had chosen the ‘amoral slut’ over her. She looked up at the girl’s room and seeing the small light on, her mind went into overdrive. No, she couldn’t go there…not before she had a good look around Max’s room.

Sliding her key into the lock, she opened the door and stepped inside. Her eyes instantly moved to the nightstand and her skepticism immediately grew. She searched all the drawers in the long dresser as well as the one in the bedside table and found that the only remaining items were the library books she had picked out for him and the black jacket she had retrieved from the old man’s house.

Her suspicion had now been confirmed. Granted it wasn’t much to go on, but it was a big arguing point for her theory. If Max truly wanted to leave her to build a life with Carrie, then why had he taken the photos of Liz with him? The discovery of the jacket only emphasized her notion. Why wouldn’t he have taken it with him to have for the cold January snowstorms Illinois was infamous for? Uless he wasn’t really going to Illinois.

Curling up on the bed with the jacket in her arms, she fought the urge to run to Carrie’s room and demand more answers from him. What if she were wrong? Looking like a lost puppy sniffing after its abusive owner, she would lose any remaining dignity she had. She just couldn’t do it. For in the end Max had betrayed her, and whatever the reason may be, it was obvious he no longer wanted her as his mate.

From the shadows of the Crashdown’s alley, a masculine figure emerged to follow the petite brunette in the dark of night. Upon arriving at the motel he faded into the blackness, waiting for her to reappear from the room she had entered.

As Max’s scent filled Liz’s senses she snuggled closer into him, wanting to forget the horrible nightmare she had experienced. It had all seemed so real.

And then the morning sun filtering through the curtains hit her, and she remembered that it was real.

Max had betrayed her.

Sitting up she felt the immediate loss of warmth the jacket had provided, and rubbing her tired eyes she didn’t think she could survive an entire day without the comforting feeling his emotions had always given her.


The clock on the nightstand taunted her, and she had no doubt that by now her parents were well aware of her absence. She might as well gather up the library books and turn in the room keys to the front desk now. She threw the jacket over her arm, picked up the books in a neat pile and closed the door one last time on the motel room that had become such a significant part of her life.

Walking across the parking lot to the little glass enclosed space marked “Office”, she noticed an older Hispanic woman approaching her. “Hi. You must be Liz,” the woman greeted in a solemn yet friendly tone. “I’m Juanita. Max has told me a lot about you.”

Liz tried to force a smile. “It’s nice to meet you.”

“You don’t look like you’re doing so well, honey. How is Max holding up? I was just coming to check on him.”

“I don’t know,” Liz said. “He left.”

“When is he coming back?” Juanita asked curiously.

“He’s not,” Liz simply said, not wanting to pour her heart out to a stranger. “I’m just turning in his room keys.”

His room keys? You mean those aren’t Carrie’s?”

Liz stiffened at the sound of the prostitute’s name. “Why would I have Carrie’s keys?”

“I’m sorry. Max said he would bring them down when he was all done up there. I just assumed…”

“Well, you assumed wrong,” Liz said bitterly. “I don’t want anything to do with Max now that he’s going away with her.”

Going away with Carrie?” the pear-shaped woman asked, her confusion evident.

“Yes,” Liz sadly confirmed.

“Liz, where exactly did Max tell you he was going with her?”

Liz was starting to get upset. This was the last thing she wanted to be discussing. “He said he was going to Illinois.”

“You mean he didn’t tell you?” the woman asked with surprise.

“Tell me what?”

“Liz, Max isn’t going anywhere with Carrie. She committed suicide Thursday morning. He’s the one who found her.”

WHAT?!” Liz asked in horror, not believing what Juanita was telling her.

“He really didn’t tell you? She took an overdose of sleeping pills late Wednesday night. Max found her Thursday morning and tried to give her CPR, but it was too late. She was already too far gone.”

Liz dropped the stack of books as the realization hit her. Suddenly the things Max had said about Carrie the previous day made sense. “Oh, Dear God.”

The image Max had shown her of Carrie with her eyes closed and her chest exposed…
“tried to give her CPR…”

He had tried to heal her.

“You are no longer the only one I have connected with…”

He formed a connection with Carrie when he attempted the healing.

Standing there in the worn, cracked parking lot of the old transient motel that so many unique souls considered home, Liz realized that Max had never come right out and said that he had made love to Carrie.

And now she knew why.

Because he hadn’t made love to Carrie…

He had merely tried to save her life.

The emotions she had felt from him, vacillating between anguish and anger, had been from his unsuccessful effort. The pain of losing a friend and the anger at not being able to make a difference clashed to create the turbulent aura she had experienced for most of that day.

In that moment Liz discovered she had been far from wrong about Max. She knew with an unparalleled certainty that he would never betray her…could not betray her, because she was his mate. Everything she had felt in her heart for the last six months had not been a lie, but instead the most wonderous, encompassing love she had ever known.

Which immediately brought to her mind a plethora of questions. She asked the most obvious one first.

“Why didn’t he tell me?”

‘Why did he let me believe he had slept with her? Where was he really planning to go? Why did he try to push me away?’ she automatically began to wonder.

“Well, you know, he’s been acting really strange since the day I told him about those attacks,” Juanita said as she watched her young friend’s girl come to grips with the news of Carrie’s passing.

The hair on the back of Liz’s neck instantly stood on end. “What attacks?”

“Two waitresses from the Launch Pad have been sexually assaulted within the past ten days or so. I told Max so he could warn you to be careful.” Seeing the pale expression on Liz’s face, Juanita asked the already answered question. “You mean he didn’t tell you that either?”

Liz shook her head no. Only this time she knew exactly why Max had kept it from her.

The attacker had to be Jake. And Max planned to kill him.

'Diemi diemu.' I am what I am. 'It is time for me to protect you, my Beauty, once and for all.'

She thought she had imagined the faint words in her mind right before he walked out on her…no, before she had ordered him to leave. He had intentionally driven her to that point so that she would not want to be connected to him in any way…so that when the energy surge he had suppressed at the Crystal Sands Mall hit its mark this time, there would be no way for her to be injured in the process.

“ I am going to join her.”

Max hadn’t actually said he was leaving with Carrie, either. He said he was going to join her. Since she now knew Carrie was dead, that could only mean one thing.

Max planned to kill Jake. And then himself.

posted on 23-Jul-2002 6:19:19 PM by SansuCry
I know with what happened in Ch. 68 a lot of you are pissed off at Max for doing that to Liz. What you need to remember is that this is not the Max of the show. This Max has spent most of his life, save the past 6 months, completely isolated from people, except when he was being harrassed by them.

He spent a month being tortured by our psycho friend Jake, believes he lost control and possibly forced himself on Liz, has just seen one of his only friends kill herself, blown up a bunch of cars, almost went after a group of innocent people, and thinks he almost killed Liz when he made love to her au natural. And that doesn’t take into account his hiding that….oh, wait. You don’t know that stuff yet. Can’t be giving away the plot, now can I?

So all I ask of you is this: keep reading and give me until the end of the story to redeem Max. If you still hate him by then, I will post my home address and you may come over and stone me in person. Sound good?

posted on 24-Jul-2002 11:08:32 PM by SansuCry
Eccentric One-your wish is granted....

Chapter 70

Liz sank to the ground, this final revelation making her heart break for an entirely different reason than the previous afternoon’s. Not only had Max driven her away to protect her from Jake, but he had forced her to hate him to spare her the agonizing pain of feeling his life drain away from him.

She now knew that she had let things get way out of hand. She had thought that letting him feel her deep, abiding love for him would be enough to heal all the wounds that had been afflicted on him over two lifetimes, but it had not been nearly enough.

“Sweetie, are you all right?” Juanita asked as she bent down to help Liz stand back up.

Liz gave the woman a panic-stricken look. “I have to find Max. Now!”

“Well, the last time I saw him was yesterday morning. He was in Carrie’s room packing up the rest of her things. Why don’t we check there first?”

Liz nodded her agreement, practically running up the stairs as the less agile woman trailed behind her, the books and jacket long forgotten on the dusty asphalt.

“MAX! MAX! If you’re in there, open the door. Please!” Liz pleaded as she frantically pounded on the door, willing the knob to turn under her fingers.

“Here! Use my key,” Juanita offered as she caught up to Liz.

Liz grabbed the key from the older woman and shoved it in the lock. Throwing the door open she stalked into the room, quickly surveying the small space for any sign of Max. When she found none she cut across the worn carpeting to check the bathroom but to no avail. She desperately looked at Juanita.

“Liz, is Max going to be all right?”

“I don’t know.”

Isabelle had been looking forward to working at the storage unit. Not that she had minded all the parties and get togethers she and Alex had attended over Christmas break, but this had come to be her quiet time. With her radio and a bunch of file cabinets, she could meditate on the strange events surrounding her existence and her place in the world.

Approaching the door to the unit she immediately noticed that something was amiss. It was apparent that the door had been forced open, although someone had gone to some length to conceal it. She wondered whether she should call the police, but it wasn’t as though anyone would have stolen anything. They were just a bunch of files, after all.

Deciding to go ahead into the unit, she raised her hand in a defensive position, ready to strike out with her powers if necessary. She slowly pushed the door open to reveal papers scattered all over the concrete floor. Peering inside, she squinted into the darkness to confirm that no one was there. Carefully stepping over the mess, she plugged in the small lamp she always used for her work.

“Wow,” she said once she noticed how widespread the damage was. Sighing at the fact that she would have to crawl around on the cold floor, she turned on her radio and began to pick up the papers. Halfway through the pile, she spotted something that looked terribly familiar. Shuffling several papers to reach the partially exposed item, her eyes widened in astonishment as she immediately recognized the foreign writing. These were several pages from one of the journals.

At first she thought Michael had placed them there for some unknown reason, but she knew that he wouldn’t be foolish enough to leave something so important in any place their parents might find it. Besides, the books had been intact when they were handed over to Liz and Max. That meant one of those two had torn the pages out, and she was certain it hadn’t been Liz. Max had been the one living amongst the file cabinets.

Flipping through the eight pages of Antarian writing, she observed that one particular symbol was quite prevalent. It probably would have been inconsequential if taken as part of a whole entire journal, but somehow she knew that the frequency with which it appeared on pages that had obvious been removed and hidden was no coincidence. If only she could read her native language…

Turning off the radio and light, she concluded that she needed to talk to Michael about this before discussing anything with Liz or Max. It was apparent that Max knew something he did not want the rest of them to find out, and her alien instincts were telling her that it was something bad.

“You stay away from me,” she had shouted. “Just stay away.”

The hundreds of times he had heard that before was a tap on the shoulder compared to the absolute jolt of agony that coursed through him as she, his Beauty, had said the words.

“I don’t want to be a part of someone who could do something so vile and sadistic.”

Neither had he.

Letting her believe that every loving word from his mouth, each tender caress of his hand, all the times they had joined bodies and souls had meant nothing to him had been the most difficult, dreadful thing he had ever done. The idea to let Liz think that he had betrayed his commitment to her with Carrie had been quickly conceived in an act of desperation at her surprise arrival, and as he became fully conscious of how devastated she would be by the dire strategy, he knew that he could not bear to continue his life without her in it, especially knowing that he was the cause of her emotional upheaval. He decided then that he would join Carrie in finding a permanent solution to such overpowering grief.

After giving Liz the images of Carrie he had asked her whether she wanted to see what had happened next. Subconsciously it had been his last hope to end his charade. If she had said yes, he would have been forced to reveal the true circumstances surrounding that compromising position. But instead she had chosen to believe the worst of him.

When she had asked him why he hadn’t just let Jake kill her, his resolve had instantly shattered. Just as he had begun to confess that she was his entire world, that he was nothing without her, she had uttered those words. Stay away from me. And in that moment he knew she hated him.

She would probably be in a fragile state of mind for quite a while, but in time she would forget about him. He had seen the beauty of her soul, and her heart was so full of love that eventually she would find a man she could truly share it with, someone who could honestly commit to her, give her the babies that she deserved to bear. A man whose touch would not harm her.

It was then that he realized things really had to be this way. Because of who he was, what he was. It was inevitable.

His own will to live broken, he had gone to Carrie’s room and watched and waited. He had taken such a drastic step to protect her, and although she would never understand why he had done it, he had to continue to keep her safe until the bitter end. As soon as Liz had appeared outside his room, he had moved away from the curtain to keep up the facade that he was no longer concerned about her.

No sooner had she disappeared around the corner than he was out the door, lurking far enough away from her that she had no idea he was there. He then hid in the alley below her balcony, once again taking up residence among the garbage cans as he gently prodded her mind to catch the first hint that she may walk outside and spy him there. His heart ached as hers did, crying the same tears as she until the light had left the sky. Still he watched over her, making certain he was concealed from her sight as she climbed down her ladder and into the night. From the shadows of the alley, he emerged to trail after her, ever vigilant of their surroundings. Upon arriving at the motel he hid in the shadows of the stairs, waiting for her to reappear from his room so that he could follow her back to the safety of her home. As the light of day came he went back to Carrie’s room to continue his veiled surveillance until he had to leave to confront Jake, the clock’s blood red numbers announcing that it was time to meet his fate.

Liz immediately knew that she would need all the help she could get to find Max. Not wanting to involve Juanita in anything alien related, she asked the matronly woman to stay at the motel in case Max returned. Her mind was racing as she tried to come up with a feasible plan. She had no idea where to start.

Not having her cell phone with her she decided to head home to call Maria before she realized that if she set foot anywhere near the Crashdown, her parents would never allow her to leave. Since neither Maria nor Michael had been scheduled to work, there was a good chance that her best friend would be over at the Evans’ house. The most logical course of action would be to go there.

She ran the entire way to the Michael and Isabelle’s house, the terrifying thoughts of what might be happening to Max spurring her along. Maria’s car was parked in the driveway, just as she had expected. She pounded on the door relentlessly, not caring whether the two aliens’ parents were home. This was a matter of life and death. When Michael opened the door the irritation she had expected to see was not there. Instead he seemed worried. He ushered her in and shut the door behind her, directing her to the living room, where Isabelle and Maria were standing around looking very upset.

“Are your parents home?” she asked, realizing it wouldn’t be good for them to overhear this particular conversation.

“No. They’re in Clovis for the day. Liz…” Michael began.

“You have to help me find Max,” she demanded.

“Find Max? But I thought…” Maria started, wondering why Liz would want to search for him when he had just broken her heart.

“I was wrong. Terribly wrong. And now I need to find him,” Liz said shortly.

“Liz, you need to sit down. There’s something we need to tell you,” Isabelle directed.

Liz paled as her eyes widened. “Oh, God, is it Max? Did he come here? Please tell me he’s ok.”

“No, Liz, we don’t know where he is. And I think it is better if you don’t go looking for him,” Michael answered solemnly.

“What? But he didn’t cheat on me. He’s going to…?”

Isabelle cut her off. “This doesn’t have anything to do with him cheating on you. Liz, I found some pages of the third journal out at the storage unit. Max tore them out and has been hiding them from us. There’s one symbol that shows up on a lot of the pages. Michael says it’s the same symbol from the necklace Max gave you. Can I see the necklace?”

Liz wanted to scream that she didn’t have time for this, but if she had any chance of finding Max, she needed their help. Humoring Isabelle, she pulled the pendant out from under her shirt. As Isabelle examined it, Liz explained, “It’s the symbol for Earth. Max said in Antarian it is called Zantier.”

Isabelle’s eyes shot up to Liz’s face at the mention of the word. “Zan-tier?” she asked for confirmation.

Liz nodded. “Please help me find him. He’s..…?”

“Liz, Zan…means danger. This symbol is some kind of warning,” Isabelle explained.

“Are you saying Max is dangerous? That’s ridiculous,” Liz responded, automatically defending her mate.

“He may not appear dangerous, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t,” Michael added.

“Liz, when you think about it, you don’t know Max all that well,” Isabelle offered.

“I’ve been hearing that a lot lately,” she said as she pointedly looked at Maria. “I know everything I need to know about Max.”

“Obviously not unless you can tell us why he was hiding these pages.”

Liz looked away in frustration, knowing she couldn’t give them the answer.

Maria spoke up first. “Liz, we’re not trying to gang up on you. We’re just worried about your safety…”

Liz’s incensed eyes glared at her friend. “I told you that Max would never hurt me.”

“You looked pretty hurt last night,” Maria observed, her voice softening.

Liz spat out, “That’s because I jumped to the wrong conclusion. I let my head believe he had done something that in my heart I knew he could not possibly do.”

Trying to diffuse the increasingly tense situation, Isabelle asked, “Liz, what has Max told you about Antar?”

“Well, you’ve read everything he’s translated…” Liz glowered.

“No. I mean, what has he told you about what he remembers?”

“I don’t know…not much. He said he only has some memories. I’ve been too busy helping him get over his fears here on Earth to worry about what happened on Antar. If you really want to know, let’s just find him and ask him. Right now Max is not dangerous to anyone except Jake and himself.”

“How can you be so sure, Liz?” Maria asked, begging to be convinced that Isabelle was wrong.

“Look at all that Jake put him through. He let the man abuse him endlessly and did nothing to defend himself until the creep pulled a gun on him!”

“Defend himself? What do you mean?” Isabelle interrupted.

“He did something to Jake. I don’t know exactly how he did it, but he attacked him with some kind of energy. That’s why he ran away when he saw Jake at the mall. He felt that energy building up inside of him and he was afraid he would hurt somebody. Look, guys…”

“He shouldn’t have been able to do that, Liz. He is a healer. It’s not possible for healers to attack people. They can’t injure or kill anyone, even to defend themselves. If he really did that, then something is wrong with him,” Michael explained.

As precious time was running out, Liz finally snapped at their continued interrogation. “Wrong with him? There is absolutely nothing wrong with Max. What is wrong is that you accuse him of being dangerous based solely on your own suspicions. Do you know for a fact that healers can’t attack people? Or did you get that from your twisted sense of instinct? Your implanted memories? Even if you are right, how do you know Max is this Zan? Just because he had some stupid pendant? For all we know, he could have found it just like you found your orb and those journals.”

“Liz, we’re not saying these things to hurt you. We’re trying to protect you. I know you don’t have any reason to believe what I’m telling you, but then what reason do you have to believe Max? I’ve known you for almost ten years…” Michael began.

“Yeah, and in those ten years you and Isabelle both lied to me about who you are. You even made Maria lie to me. So, yes, you’re right, I don’t really have any reason to believe you. You don’t know any more about Antar than I do. If it weren’t for Max, you wouldn’t know anything about your alien parents or your human donor or why you were here or how you were created. And this is how you repay him? You try to turn me against him?” She looked toward Maria, pleading with her best friend to help her. “Please, ‘ria. Just let me borrow your car so that I can find him before it’s too late.”

“Maria, if you give her those keys, you’ll be putting her life in jeopardy,” Michael warned.

Maria looked back and forth between her boyfriend and best friend, knowing that she would regret any decision she made. She finally looked at Liz with an apologetic face. “Liz, I’m sorry…”

“If you don’t want to help me, fine. I know Max better than any of you ever will, and I am going to find him. With or without your help.” She turned and stalked out the door, slamming it behind her. She was already to the sidewalk when she heard the door fly open. She ignored it until she heard Maria’s voice.


Knowing that Maria would try to stop her, she picked up her pace. Suddenly someone was grabbing her arm. Spinning around to demand her release, she felt Maria press something into her hand. The car keys.

“I hope you know what you’re doing, Liz,” her friend commented, the implicit trust evident in her eyes.

“He’s gone after Jake. He plans to kill him and then commit suicide. I have to stop him.”

“Then go,” Maria said before turning and running back into the house.

At the sound of the Jetta peeling out of the driveway, Michael gave Maria an incredulous look. “How could you do that to her? You may have just signed her death certificate!”

“If you had seen her last night, you would know that without Max, she is already dead. She was going to go after him anyway, so what difference did it make whether or not she used my car to do it? If you two really are that concerned for her safety, then why don’t you get your own damn keys and help her search for him? Since Max is apparently so dangerous, don’t you think it would be helpful to have Isabelle’s firepower and your healing abilities on hand when she does find him?”

Michael and Isabelle exchanged questioning looks before Isabelle headed for the door. Following on Isabelle’s heels he commanded Maria, “You stay here. I don’t want you involved in this if things get out of hand.”

Maria followed behind him as she scoffed in a challenging voice, “Liz is my best friend. Things are already out of hand, and I’m already involved.”

Shaking his head in exasperation, Michael knew that there was no point in arguing with his girlfriend. “Then come on. Tell me where to go.”

Maria froze in place. “I don’t know where. Liz just said that Max was going to go after Jake and then kill himself.”

“So he could be anywhere?” Michael asked in dismay.

“I guess so,” Maria said, disappointed that she hadn’t asked Liz for more information.

Isabelle’s strategic mind kicked in. “If he’s going to have it out with Jake, he’d want to do it somewhere familiar to have the advantage. Still he wouldn’t want it to be anywhere conspicuous, so the motel and Crashdown are definitely out.”

“What about the storage unit? He hid those pages there, so maybe he went back there,” Maria offered.

“I was just out there an hour ago, and he wasn’t around then,” Isabelle replied.

“I don’t think we should rule out any possibilities. What about that church? Isn’t that where he went the last time he had a run in with Jake,” Michael reasoned.

“That’s right! Let’s start there!” Maria shouted as they ran out the door to the Jeep.

Liz didn’t allow herself to cry until she was far away from the Evans. The things Michael and Isabelle had told her might have been surprising if they had said them a week ago. But considering the events of the past twenty-four hours, she knew that it was very possible there was at least some truth to what they said.

Had Max really torn out and hidden part of that journal? Why had he avoided talking about his life on Antar? The few times he had discussed it, he had blocked his emotions from her. No, she couldn’t believe it. This was her Max. She loved him more than anything, and she knew he felt the same. He couldn’t possibly be dangerous. After all, he had healed her. He had refused to tell her about Jake just to spare her the pain of knowing she was the cause of his kidnapping. Those weren’t things a dangerous person would do. A dangerous person didn’t become overjoyed just because someone touched them. And they certainly didn’t cry at the sound of a car or try to save the life of a prostitute. No, Max was not dangerous. He most certainly wasn’t this Zan, whoever he was.

‘N’ahn diem Zan.’

Max had whispered the words to her as they had begun to make love. Somewhere on the periphery of her mind she had thought she knew what they meant. Zan. He had definitely said Zan.

If Zan really did mean danger and Max knew it, could that also be why he had pushed her away with his deception? Was his plan to kill himself an attempt to make sure he didn’t hurt anyone else? So many questions were swimming through her thoughts that she hadn’t even been paying attention to where she was driving, and she chastised herself for being so careless. She sighed as she saw where she had ended up, as if she had been lead there by instinct. She was at the church.

She jumped out of the car and ran to the entrance she had used the other two times she had visited the abandoned structure. She stepped inside the main part of the building and gave it a cursory glance for any sign of Max. When the dirty haze that covered everything in the room appeared to be undisturbed, she turned to the stairway and cautiously walked up to the bell tower. No Max there, either.

Now that she knew the truth, she didn’t think she’d ever forgive herself for telling him to block his emotions from her. But she still didn’t understand why their verbal connection had never returned, since it was obvious that Max had not made love to Carrie. It wasn’t until she was back downstairs that the insight hit her. The last time he had held back his feelings it had been of his own volition, and he had ended up in this very building. Perhaps their verbal connection had returned, and he had just refused to acknowledge her when she had spoken to him. If she contacted him now and told him that she knew everything, would he choose to respond? Or would he remain silent and run even further from her in the misguided effort to keep her safe?

Getting back in the Jetta, she laid her head against the steering wheel and wondered where she should go next. She knew Max was going to go after Jake, but where? Would he sneak into the same type of motel room he had spent so many tortured days in and destroy Jake in his sleep? Or did he plan to kidnap the crazed man and subject him to the same abuse he had suffered? Somehow she couldn’t see the gentle, loving man to whom she had committed her heart killing anyone in cold blood, no matter what transgressions that person had performed against him. Then again, Max now felt that he had nothing left to live for except the demise of Jake.

What should her next move be? Suppressing her own emotions so that she could have some semblance of logical thinking, she knew that after finding Carrie, Max would be sure to kill himself in a place where his body would not have to be found by anyone. The only two places she was aware of that met this criteria were here at the church and the old man’s house. The house Jake had taken Max from. A small sense of relief washed over her as she instantly knew where Max would be, the supreme irony of the situation not lost on her. She started up the car and quickly drove away, determined to save the life of the only man she could ever love. Her mate.

Max had arrived at the old man’s house around ten-thirty according to Carrie’s watch. He immediately went to the bedroom, putting his duffel bag on the torn and dirty mattress. Seeing all the debris strewn about the room he decided to pick it up as penance for the mess he had left at the storage unit. Once that task was accomplished he began to remove several items from his bag. First he took out the shirt and pants he had worn Christmas Eve, the night he had committed himself to his Beauty. This is what he would wear. Next came the shredded undergarments and uniform that held her unique scent. His last breath would be of this. Last came the picture frame holding the beautiful photos of his mate in a wedding dress, smiling the smile he would never see again. He would hold this close to his heart as if he were holding her one last time before he took Jake’s gun and ended his miserable existence. He was prepared to die alone.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 24-Jul-2002 11:18:19 PM ]
posted on 27-Jul-2002 6:38:58 PM by SansuCry
Hi all--

Hubby is home this weekend and he hates it when I pay more attention to the computer than to him...Imagine the nerve!!

Can't guarantee I'll post before Monday, but I may if he falls asleep early since I'm a night owl.

posted on 27-Jul-2002 11:53:27 PM by SansuCry
Just ignore that little ole note up there since the 5 yr old talked Hubby into a daddy-daughter sleepover downstairs.

Here's the new part. Remember to keep you hands and feet inside the car until the ride has come to a complete stop.

Chapter 71

He was prepared to die alone.

The stifling pain he had felt from his Beauty was the only motivation he needed to go through with it. For now that he had tasted heaven, he did not want to return to the hell that had been his life before she had become a part of it. As he stood there contemplating the details of his final moments on Earth, an unexpected warmth suddenly filled his soul. He hoped this was what death was like. Maybe he would finally have peace.

That warmth began to swell inside of him, slowly expanding until it overtook the pain and heartache that had consumed him since the moment she had believed in his betrayal. He welcomed it with anticipation, so desperate to experience anything that came close to just one moment of her soothing love. Then, as he realized that nothing could ever compare to the feeling of being loved by her, his mind and heart staggered at the significance of what he was experiencing. There could be no question about it. He really was feeling her love, which could only mean one thing. A brief sweep of her psyche confirmed it. She knew he had not betrayed her.

She understood that his deception had been his attempt to keep her safe. A groundswell of emotions so powerful that he couldn’t tell whether they were hers or his kept him transfixed to the side of the bed in the old man’s house. He was thankful that she was no longer suffering in agony, yet the fact that her love for him was as solid as ever presented a whole new set of problems.

His intimate knowledge of her soul told him that she would now seek him out, putting her own life in jeopardy to save his. He could not let that happen, so he touched the edges of her mind, gently threading his way through her tumultuous thoughts to tenderly implant an idea of where to look for him. Go to the church and stay there. He could only hope that she would follow the notion as if it were her own. In a little more than an hour he would have his final confrontation with Jake, and if he could keep her away for that long, she would finally be safe.

“Damn it! They’re not here,” Isabelle cursed as they pulled up to the church.

“Liz isn’t here. That doesn’t mean Max isn’t. We need to check to be sure,” Maria said as she jumped out of the Jeep.

“Maria, let Isabelle and I go look. Please?” Michael requested, the beseeching look in his eyes tugging at her heart.

When Isabelle had first come to the house with the torn out pages of the journal, Maria didn’t understand what the big deal had been. It disturbed her that the female alien had automatically assumed Max had done something bad. There could be a very simple explanation for why the pages had ended up where Isabelle had found them. Maybe Max hadn’t been able to translate the symbols and in a moment of frustration had ripped them from the book, she reasoned. Her irritation was short-lived when Isabelle insisted she was right, that Max was dangerous, in the same tone of voice Michael had used the day she discovered aliens existed. He had needed her to believe him then, and today Isabelle had asked for that same consideration.

She nodded her acceptance of Michael’s request and stood outside the church while the two aliens ventured inside. Kicking the dirt under her heels, she thought about the strange events that had happened between Liz and Max this past week. That whole drunken debacle came to mind, the most alarming part of it being the obvious physical attack Max had made on Liz. Her best friend’s clothing had been torn to shreds, and worse yet, Max had assaulted her with such fervor that he had left teeth marks on her body. Whether or not it was intentional was almost irrelevant. Then Max had stood Liz up at the library. Liz had begged her to check on Max, indicating that she had been getting strange feelings from him. To see her friend go from the pinnacle of joy Friday morning at having made love with Max again to being in the depths of despair less than twelve hours later at his apparent indiscretion only added to her concern. So when Michael had warned her of what might happen if she helped her friend, she decided to err on the side of caution…

…until she had seen the forlorn look on Liz’s face. Remembering how despondent the girl had grown the several weeks Max had been missing, she knew that even if he were dangerous, even if he could possibly hurt Liz, her friend still wanted to be with him. And as long as that was what Liz wanted, she would help her achieve that goal. Her own very human instincts told her it had been the right decision.

“No sign of either one of them,” Isabelle said glumly as she and Michael came back to the Jeep. “I guess we might as well try the storage unit. What have we got to lose?”

Not wanting to waste a minute, the three jumped in the vehicle and headed out.

Liz parked the Jetta a short distance away from the old man’s house. She was terrified that if Max had the slightest hint she was approaching he would flee from her. Of course there was nothing to stop him from walking away once he discovered she had found him, but at least she would have a chance to get things out in the open. She approached the isolated area with trepidation, uncertain as to whether she should begin her search in the house or at the shed that bordered the back of the property. She decided to take her chances with the house, not ready to wade through the tall weeds that over time had claimed the yard.

Standing outside the splintered front door, she felt she was close enough now that she had to alert him to her presence. The last thing she needed was to have him accidentally attack her.

‘I love you, my mate, and I know about Carrie. Juanita told me.’

‘Max I know you’re at the old man’s house. Please answer me.’

‘I’m coming to find you.’

Several silent minutes passed before his soft strangled response echoed in her ear, ‘Beauty?’

A smile crossed her lips as tears rolled down her cheeks. ‘You’re alive! You’re still alive.’

‘Beauty, please do not come here. You have to stay away.’

“I’m already here,” she said aloud as she stood in the doorway of the bedroom, her heart leaping into her throat as she saw Max sitting in the middle of the dirty bed surrounded by reminders of her.

His eyes instantly moved from the picture frame in his hand to the place her voice had come from. He blinked a few times to be sure she wasn’t an apparition before he spoke to her, his tone panicked. “You have to go, Liz. You cannot be here.”

Stepping into the room and approaching the bed, she said, “Max, I know what you’re planning to do, and I’m not going to let you do it.”

Dropping the frame on the bed he scrambled across the mattress to stand on the other side of the room. “Please, Liz. I’m begging you. Go before it is too late.”

Keeping her eyes locked with his she slowly made her way around the bed, “I’m not going anywhere until I get some answers. No more deception. No more hiding things from me. I want the truth, Max.”

He thought for a minute before he resignedly said, “If I tell you what you want to know, you must promise that you will leave this place...”


“Give me your word, Liz,” he demanded.

“Only if you promise to come with me.”

“I cannot do that,” he said sadly.

“Yes, you can. We can go to the police and tell them that Jake is the one who attacked those girls. They’ll be able to identify him and put him in jail for a very long time.”

His anguished eyes pierced her soul. “Even if we did that, I can no longer be with you. There are things you don’t know about me…”

“Then tell me! If you aren’t pushing me away because of Jake, then why? How could you even think of killing yourself and leaving me all alone? Don’t you know yet how much I love you,” she choked out in frustration.

“Once you know everything, you will no longer love me.”

Seeing that he had backed himself into the corner of the room, she reached out to touch him. “Max, I know more than you think.”

He pushed her hand away as he shamefully looked away. “You are still here, so you cannot possibly know the worst.”

“N’ahn diem Zan.”

His eyes shot back up to hers at the sound of the words.

“Max, please, you have to tell me. Is Zan your Antarian name?”

His lashes fluttered shut as he replied, “Zan is not my name. I do not have an Antarian name.”

“Do you know who Zan is? Are your related to him somehow?” she implored, knowing by the tone of his voice that she was on the right track.

“Zan is what I am.”

“I don’t understand…I thought you were Antarian,” she said, confused by his confession.

“I am from Antar, but I am not allowed to be called Antarian.”


“I should not know. I was not supposed to remember.”

“Remember what? Max, please help me out here. “What is Zan?” she asked, growing nervous at his sudden reluctance. “And what do those pages that you tore out of the journal say?”

All other thoughts and concerns left his mind as he realized the conversation he had imagined a thousand times was finally at hand. She would now know everything about him. Suddenly feeling very weak at the thought he slid down the wall and sank to the floor, refusing to look at her as he pulled his knees up and wrapped his hands around them.

“Like Isabelle and Michael explained, there are three different Antarian abilities: telepath, healer, and warrior, although not a warrior in Earth’s sense of the word. An Antarian warrior can only use his abilities defensively and is not capable of aggressively harming others. Each Antarian possesses one of these three abilities, and on rare occasions an Antarian may be a telepathic healer or a telepathic warrior.”

“A diad?” Liz asked, remembering the conversation to which he was referring.

He nodded. “Because Antar could not be an aggressor, other planets, other systems constantly attacked it. These attacks caused many deaths amongst the telepaths and healers since they had no way of protecting themselves without the warriors. All of the provinces’ leaders feared that eventually the telepaths and healers would cease to exist altogether, so they came up with a plan to genetically create a triad, someone who would possess all three Antarian abilities. They hoped that by doing so, all Antarians would be able to defend themselves in the near future.”

“But that still doesn’t explain what Zan is.”

“Zan was the name given to the first triad. The Antarians began by creating one genetically altered child. As Zan grew it appeared that the alteration had taken, but the leaders were cautious. It was not until Zan was of age and old enough to enter battle that that they discovered the alteration had worked better than they could have imagined. Zan was able to attack Antar’s opponents instead of simply defending himself, and he became the most honored Antarian on the planet. After that the leaders began to create as many triad children as possible. Every family in all the provinces wanted their next child to be a triad.”

“What happened to change that? You made it sound like being a triad is something bad.”

“After Zan successfully led the military in defending the planet from an attack by the neighboring planet of Thedor, the Thedorian king offered his only child Ava as a bride for Zan in an attempt to unite the two planets in peace and end any more disputes. The announcement of their union was celebrated throughout the provinces for several days, but on the night of the commitment ceremony something went terribly wrong and during their first mating, Zan’s energy killed Ava.”

“Killed her?” she asked with amazement. “It was an accident, right?”

“According to Zan it was. He said his energy had soared out of his control, and the leaders had believed him. But it did not matter. No Antarian had ever killed another being outside of warfare, and the Thedorian king saw it as a deliberate attempt to end his family’s bloodline. He threatened to bring together the other four planets of the system to destroy Antar for what Zan had done but the leaders, ashamed that their creation had committed such a monstrous act, appeased Khivar by allowing him to execute Zan. The Antarian people who had taken the triad children as their own either no longer wanted them or were forced to give them up for their own safety, as many feared that the children would inherit Zan’s murderous trait. The children were placed in a compound near two outlying provinces and no one ever spoke of triads again.”

“How many children were there, and what happened to them?”

“There were several hundred children, and they were raised by the leaders to believe that they were Zan, genetic defects that had no Antarian abilities. As they grew older that excuse was used to deny them any chance at a normal life. They could not leave the compound and were prohibited from committing themselves or having children. Even among their own kind there was no affection, no caring, no physical contact. The leaders treated them with loathing and scorn, and they came to see themselves and each other as worthless beings even as they struggled to survive. Some escaped the compound and never returned. Many simply gave up while the rest endured from one day to the next, trying to live off the little that was given to them. It was a very lonely existence.”

“Oh my God. You were one of those children,” Liz whispered, her hand going to her mouth in a grieving gesture as her own weak legs carried her down to the floor. “N’ahn diem Zan?”

“I do not want to be Zan,” he translated.

Her hand trembled as the tears rolled down her face, unable to imagine how a planet could damn an entire segment of its population, and children at that, to such a life based on the misfortunate act of one man. This gentle, loving soul in front of her had endured so much, and the fact that he showed no bitterness or resentment only endeared him to her more. He of all people did not deserve that kind of life.

“You said that you shouldn’t have remembered this?” she finally inquired after she had calmed slightly.

“When I came here my memories of Antar were to be erased, but something must have gone wrong. From the first time I recall being here on Earth, I always knew that I was different. I was aware that I could connect with people but that I should avoid them. I knew nothing about my healing ability until I used it on you. It seems that once I did that, I slowly began to remember everything about my life on Antar. I didn’t understand how I could have abilities when I had always been told I was defective…until I read who Zan really was in Michael and Isabelle’s journal.”

“Those are the pages you tore out,” Liz observed.

Max continued as if he didn’t hear her. “I should never have come back to you after I escaped from Jake, but I could not resist you,” he said, his tear-filled eyes finally meeting hers. “I could not stay away no matter how hard I tried. The look in your beautiful eyes, every touch of your warm skin, each sweet taste of your lips made me believe that you could change me, that I could stop being Zan. But I was foolish to think that, and I know better now. I am what I am. I cannot pretend otherwise any longer.”

Liz slowly crawled over to him and rested her hands on his shoes. She could tell he was still blocking his emotions from her as she had ordered the previous day, but at the moment his feelings were so strong that they were coming off of him in riotous waves. When he did not pull away from her, she traced her fingers up the sides of his legs in a silent request for him to lower them. He could not deny her. She carefully watched the anguished look that crossed his features as she climbed into his lap, her hips straddling his. Reaching down, she pulled his hands up to rest on her sides before taking his face in her own. Tilting his lips up to meet hers, her tongue beckoned him to open up his mouth and mind to her as she silently whispered to him, ‘Is that the worst of it? Because I am still here, and I love you now more than ever.’

Tears rolled down the sides of his cheeks and over her fingers as he pulled his mouth away from her. “There is more.”

Her voice and eyes pleaded together. “Tell me.”

“My essence was implanted into human genetic material, and then I was sent here to Earth.”


“It is a…humane way for Antar to rid itself of Zan. Zantier means ‘Land of Zan’.”

“There is nothing humane about what they’ve done to you,” Liz said cynically as she tenderly caressed his cheek with one hand and stroked the back of his head with the other. “Did they send all of you here?”

Hesitantly he replied, “Only Zan who harm others are sent to Earth.”

“So Earth is some kind of triad prison?” she asked in amazement. Answering her own question, she shook her head, “Of course. That’s why there is an Antarian word for it.” Remembering the journals she inquired, “Is that why Rath and Vilandra were here?”

“No. Their ship did crash here by accident. Michael and Isabelle are not Zan, and their parents wrote down the history of Zan to warn them about where they had landed. When you first told me about them and that they knew they had powers, I thought they were Zan who had found their memories, like me. I did not want to meet them because I was afraid they would expose me and force me to stay away from you.”

“You’ve been doing a pretty good job of that all on your own lately,” Liz said sadly as she pressed light kisses on his cheeks and forehead before lowering her eyes to meet his. She asked him the necessary question, the one that he dreaded the most. “Why were you sent here?”

His unseeing gaze turned to stare at the bed as he relived the events of his previous life. “I learned to time the leaders’ visits so I could slip out of the compound at night and go to the nearby provinces in search of food. There were very few who had any kind of sympathy for us, but I met such a person, an elder. She would feed me and teach me how to read Antarian, but she told me I had to return to the compound before I was discovered missing or They would hunt me down. One night I went to see her, and some of the leaders were at her home. A telepath was trying to read her mind to find out who she had been helping. The elder appeared to be in pain, and before I knew what I was doing I had killed the telepath…”

Her hands cradling his face once again, she tenderly rubbed her thumb over his lips as she murmured, “You were only protecting someone who had helped you…”

Looking back up at her, he shook his head, “But I didn’t protect her. When I killed the telepath she ended up dying as well.”

“You didn’t hurt her on purpose,” Liz argued emphatically.

He said solemnly, “It does not matter why I killed. It is the fact that I was able to kill her at all. I am Zan.”

“You can call yourself Max or Zan or whatever you want, but I know you—I knew that underneath all that dirt and behind those frightened eyes there was a gentle, beautiful soul speaking to me long before you knew a single word...I made love with you, I mated with you.” She took his hand from his hip and brought it up to her lips, kissing the symbol on his wrist. “I committed myself to you.”

“If you had known what I was, that I was a murderer, you never would have done those things with me.”

Liz’s own anguished tears spilled onto his face as she brought her forehead to rest against his. ‘I did know.’

Max grabbed her shoulders and pushed her back just far enough to completely see her face. “No. You could not have known,” he said dubiously. “I blocked those things from you…”

“Well, your block didn’t work. I didn’t know about Zan, but I knew that you had killed someone,” she quietly explained.

“How long have you known?” he choked out.

“Since they day you first met Michael and Isabelle. When I apologized to you for calling Michael an asshole, you asked me if I had regretted saying I love you. I told you that I would never regret that. When we kissed, I just knew it.”

“And you mated with me…committed yourself to me anyway? How could you do that? How could you have even wanted me near you?” he asked incredulously.

“Because not only did I know that you killed someone, I felt all of your guilt and sorrow about doing it, that it had been an accident. At first, I thought it was Jake—I thought that is why you didn’t want to talk about him. But after you saw him again, I knew it had to be someone else. Since you life on Antar was the only other thing you refused to talk to me about, I knew it had to have happened there.”

“Why didn’t you tell me that you knew?” he questioned, his features a mixture of relieved shock.

“I repeated to you again and again that nothing would ever change the way I feel about you, but I could tell that you still didn’t believe me. I thought that once you truly understood that I would never turn away from you, you would trust me enough to tell me what had happened on your own. Instead you let me believe that you no longer wanted me, that you had turned away from me.”

He reached up to wipe away the fresh tears that trailed down her face at the memory. “I kept telling myself that you would hate me once you knew the truth, but I think my heart knew that you would still accept me, still want to be with me. I was desperate to do anything to get you to walk away because I knew I was not strong enough to leave you. And I know that if I stay with you, I will hurt you.”

“You are part human now. Zan is not who you are any more. You may still be a triad, but that doesn’t mean you will do what Zan did,” Liz pleaded.

“Can you be certain? I told you, my Beauty, that the thought of you dying is the worst torture I could ever imagine. That is even more true now because the pain that I felt when I found Carrie was almost intolerable, and I barely knew her. This energy is inside of me, Liz, a part of me, and just like Zan, I can’t control it. Knowing that I could kill you because of it is too much for me to bear.”

“Max, the only way you could ever harm me would be for you to continue trying to keep your distance from me. No physical injury you think you might cause me could ever hurt worse than that. We are a part of each other, committed to each other from now until the end of time, and I cannot survive the grief of being separated from you. I will die of a broken heart,” she said, the pain of the admission making her voice waver.

She gave him a soft kiss before moving off of him and standing up. She offered him her hand and without a second’s hesitation he accepted it, standing up in front of her. His hand still clasped in hers, she rested it at the top of her jeans as she pulled his head down for a heated kiss. ‘Make love to me, Max. I need to feel you inside of me—my heart, my body, my mind, my soul.’

His hand automatically began to undo the buttons as he begged her, ‘Beauty, do not ask me to do this. You know I cannot resist you.’

‘Then don’t resist. Trust me, Max. Your love could never be a danger to me.’

‘Not here, my mate. Please,’ he silently implored. She broke their passionate kiss to give him a desperate look.

“Jake,” Max said aloud, the name echoing off the stark walls. “He’s coming here to have it out with me,” he said frantically, angry at himself for losing track of time and putting Liz in an entirely different kind of danger.

“What?” she asked with surprise. She had just assumed that any plan for bringing Jake back to this house would have him already restrained before he arrived. “How soon will he be here?”

“In thirty minutes.”

“My God, Max. We have to get out of here.”

She pulled him behind her as she quickly walked out of the room and into the hallway. Max took over the lead as they entered the kitchen, making it halfway through the living room before Liz stopped in her tracks. “The picture frame,” she said, and before Max even realized what she was doing, she had slipped her hand out of his grasp to go retrieve his prized possession.

“No, Liz!” he managed to yell before the sound of broken glass punctuated the stale air.

‘MAX!’ her terror filled voice screamed in his head as he dashed back to the bedroom at full speed. He made it just in time to see her kicking feet being pulled out the window.


‘He’s taking me to the shed! Hurry!’

‘I’m coming!’ he assured her as he ran out of the bedroom and back into the kitchen, sprinting across the large room to reach the door that lead to the back yard. Seized from lack of use, he bypassed the knob and kicked out the door with his foot, sprinting across the deep field of weeds. Approaching the small dilapidated building, he froze at the sight of what awaited him on the concrete pad next to it.

Jake had Liz’s back pulled tightly to his front, one hand holding a gun to her head, his other hand hidden down the front of her still unbuttoned jeans.

Spotting his second victim, Jake gave him a leering smile. “You’re not such a bad little prick after all. How nice of you to bring a present to your own going away party. And you even started to unwrap her for me.”

(Ok, Eccentric One, I expect you to find any glaring mistakes I may have made since you seem to be the expert at deciphering the clues.)

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 27-Jul-2002 11:56:34 PM ]
posted on 28-Jul-2002 2:50:43 PM by SansuCry
Eccentric One originally wrote:
I just have to share this. The other day I was thinking about the Roswell actors and all the fan fiction stories out there for their characters. My question to myself was: If the actors could film one of the stories, which one would I most like to see them act out?

My answer, hands down, was this one. I think Jason Behr would have to give his acting talents a real work-out to pull off this Max (especially earlier in the story with his broken speech and thoughts). But I would just love to see him do it!


Eccentric One originally wrote:
Sansu - my wish is granted, huh? Can you grant other wishes? 'Cause I have a few really good ones. *big*

Eccentric One--
Being the sucker for feedback that I am, I was cutting and pasting into the word file I save everybody's feedback in when I realized that theses two posts were related.

I get the feeling that one of those few really good wishes would be to see JB filming the NC-17 parts to the story....

Or better yet, being Liz's body double in those parts. *big**big**big*


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 28-Jul-2002 2:53:12 PM ]
posted on 2-Aug-2002 9:11:55 PM by SansuCry
Hi, guys. I just realized I posted this on American Dream but not here.

My sister is visiting from San Antonio for the next ten days, so I do't know whether I'll have time to update. This next part is giving me some trouble--just not turning out the way I want it to. So if I do update it may be American Dream...

Sorry to leave you hanging, and thanks for the bumps.

posted on 13-Aug-2002 1:26:31 AM by SansuCry
Well, I had some great times with my sister, but now I've finally returned with the next part. This was exceptionally difficult to write because I just couldn't get the wording right, but I'm finally satisfied with it.
Please let me know what you think.

Warning: there is a brief part of this chapter that may be considered sexually violent, so this part is rated NC-17 for that reason.

Chapter 72

Michael, Maria and Isabelle had searched all over town for any sign of Liz or Max, even going so far as to have Isabelle climb the fire escape to Liz’s balcony on the off chance that the couple had ended up there. It wasn’t until Isabelle called Alex to cancel their afternoon date that Michael remembered taking Liz to the old man’s house to retrieve the paperwork that established Max’s new identity.

“God, how could I have been so dense?” Maria said critically. “Jake took Max from that house. If Max is really bent on killing him, what better place to do it?”

“I’m sure if we’ve figured that out, so has Liz,” Isabelle observed.

Starting the Jeep up again, Michael gritted out, “Then let’s not waste time standing around here.”

Pulling out of the alley and onto the road that would lead them to the edge of town, Maria prayed that they wouldn’t be too late.

The torrent of Max’s emotions came rushing into Liz with the force of a tidal wave, the willpower needed to block them suddenly drained from him as the man he vowed to kill held the woman he had sworn to protect.

He despised himself for the weakness that had put her in danger once again. He hated Jake for harming his Beauty, for touching her in places even he no longer had the right to touch. He loved her with an immeasurable passion. He feared for her as a madman controlled her future, their future.

‘I’m sorry, my Beauty. I’m so sorry.’

“Not such a cocky son of a b*tch after all, now are you?” Jake tormented, his eyes sparkling with triumph. “I warned you to not be too overconfident, and now it seems that I have the upper hand. And the lower one, too.”

Max could feel Liz’s fear and pain as Jake sunk his fingers deeper into her sensitive flesh. She was trying to be so strong for him that it made him even angrier with himself for allowing this to happen to her.
‘It was my fault. I shouldn’t have left your side Max, but now isn’t the time for regrets. We’re going to get out of this, but I need you to stay focused. We have to have a plan,’ she silently whispered as she willed him to feel how much she loved him.

“Aw, don’t tell me cat’s got your tongue again. Or maybe someone cut it off for lying about your little girlfriend here.” Addressing Liz, he growled into her ear, “Can you believe he told me you left town? Now how rude is that?”

‘Max, can you kill him?’ Liz asked hesitantly, wishing there were some other way to escape this nightmare.

“Let her go!” Max snarled commandingly, his blood surging through his veins so loudly that he could barely hear himself speak.

‘Beauty, please. I can’t risk hurting you,’ he beseeched as his agony flowed to her through their connection.

“Ah, the little prick speaks,” Jake mocked.

‘I’ll find a way to distract him so I can get away from him,’ Liz elaborated.

“Let her go!” Max ordered as he moved closer to the pair, fighting to keep his entire body from trembling.

Jake pressed the gun into Liz’s temple. “Do you really think you’re in any kind of position to be making demands? One step closer and I pull the trigger.”

‘Don’t move, Liz. He’ll do it,’ Max’s desperate voice echoed in her mind as unrestrained terror poured into her.

“This is between you and me,” he declared to Jake, hoping that his former captor would take the bait.

“No, my friend. This is between me and her, but you put your nose where it didn’t belong, and believe me, you are going top pay the ultimate price for that.” He maneuvered his wrist so that it pushed Liz’s jeans further down her hips. “The only question is: do I kill you now or let you watch as I teach your little whore here how to please a real man?”

‘Do you trust me, Max?’

“I only see one real man here, and it sure the hell isn’t you,” Liz spat out.

“Shut up, you little bitch.”

‘Liz, what are you doing?’ Max asked with worry as he noticed the irritation flaring in Jake’s eyes.

“Why should I? You have to know how pathetic you are that this is the only way you can get a piece,” Liz said derisively.

‘You have to trust me, my mate,’ she begged.

“This isn’t the only way, bitch. Just the most fun,” Jake leered as he nearly lifted her off the ground with his hidden hand.

‘Liz, he’ll kill you!’ he silently pleaded as her pain touched his soul.

“Let me guess. You can’t get it up unless you’re hurting someone,” Liz goaded.

‘Not if you kill him first. I can’t tell you what I’m going to do, but you have to trust me in order for this to work.’

“I said shut up,” Jake ordered as he jerked her head with the muzzle of the gun.

‘Yes, I trust you,’ Max replied.

“You’re going to have to make me shut up,” Liz said defiantly.

Her eyes reflected the depth of her love for her mate as she silently directed, ‘Whatever happens, don’t forget that I love you my mate, and from here on don’t believe a word I say until Jake is dead. As soon as you see a chance to blast him, do it.’

“I see what game you’re playing. Sacrifice yourself to save your little boyfriend over there. You know he did the same thing for you. He probably didn’t tell you everything he did to protect you from bad old Jake.”

With what little range of motion she had, Liz rubbed her buttocks into Jake’s stiff crotch. In a tone that she hoped was suggestive enough to mask her true feelings, she said, “That’s not the game I want to play. I’m a big girl, and I don’t need anyone to protect me. You like to be rough. I like to have it rough. Why don’t you let him watch me be your whore. Maybe he can learn a thing or two.”

Max stood frozen in horror as his frantic mind pieced together what Liz planned to do.

“I’ll be God damned. This must be my lucky day,” Jake sneered at him. The gun still tight against Liz’s temple, he withdrew his hand from her pants and ordered, “Take your jeans off, then slowly get down on your knees.”

‘Beauty, no…’

‘Max, you have to stay focused and in control. Don’t take your eyes off of Jake or you may miss your chance.’

Afraid that if she moved too quickly Jake might get trigger-happy, Liz tentatively hooked her thumbs in the waistband of her jeans and gently slid them the rest of the way to the ground, kicking her shoes off to step out of them. Nudging them aside, she asked as seductively as possible, “Can I turn around?”

Jake’s eyes pierced Max’s hateful glare before grabbing Liz’s arm and slowly turning her to face him, the gun dragging along her forehead as it moved from one temple to the other. “Either of you try anything and I’ll blow your fucking head off.”

Cupping Jake’s arousal through his jeans Liz pressed her chest into his, the bare nipples under her shirt hardened by the chilly January air. “Shouldn’t that be my line?” she asked huskily.

He seized a fistful of her hair with his free hand and commanded, “On your knees, bitch.”

‘Liz, please…’ Max winced as her pain spiked through him.

‘Stay focused, Max, or all of this will be for nothing.’

Liz lowered herself to the cool ground and knelt before the monster who had physically and emotionally scarred the man she loved, her own anger and hatred festering just below her sexual façade. If she could keep herself from throwing up she could get Jake into a very vulnerable position and make her escape.

“Now suck me,” he commanded, knowing the gun to her head was the only incentive she needed to follow his instructions to the letter.

Liz took a deep, steadying breath before reaching for the button of Jake’s pants. As she was about to undo it, Jake suddenly yanked her by the hair, forcing her to look at Max. “On second thought, I’ve changed my mind. I’ve been waiting for a piece of this pussy for a long time, and I’m not very good at being patient. I think it’s time to collect,” he taunted her mate. Speaking to Liz he continued, “And after I’m done with that, I think I’ll see if your ass is as tight as loverboy’s over there.”

“WHAT?” Liz asked in revulsion, her escape plan instantly forgotten as Jake’s words obliterated her concentration. Max’s own focus faltered as his eyes closed in humiliation.

Jake gave a demonic laugh. “I’m not surprised he didn’t tell you. He f*cked up my plans to get me a piece of pussy, so I made him give me a piece of ass in exchange.”

“Oh my God, Max. He raped you?” she pleaded, her shock so great she voiced the question aloud.

“Well, maybe technically it was rape, but he must have enjoyed it,” Jake said smugly. “After all, I’m not the only one who spilled my load.”

Liz covered her mouth with her hand. “I think I’m going to be sick.”

‘Beauty…’ Max pleaded as he looked at her shamefully.

Jake released her hair from his grasp and made a slight step away from her. “Don’t you dare throw up on me, you little bitch!”

Liz needed Max to know that he had done nothing wrong, that he had no reason to be ashamed, but before she could whisper to him that it was the thought of what Jake had done to him making her sick, she realized she was completely free from the evil man.

Seizing the opportunity and praying that Max could regain his focus in time, she rolled away from Jake as she silently yelled, ‘NOW, MAX! KILL THE BASTARD!’

In that instant, a bullet and a flash of light changed three lives forever.

“There’s the Jetta!” Maria hollered as the Jeep rounded the bend. She jumped out before Michael brought the vehicle to a complete stop, running to the car and peering inside. Seeing that it was completely empty, she looked around frantically for any sign of her best friend. Isabelle and Michael quickly joined her, fanning out into the surrounding field to search for any possible clues.

“That old guy’s house is just around the next bend. We should try there,” Michael explained after a few minutes.

“But what if she’s out here somewhere?” Maria worried. “We haven’t looked over that way at all.”

“Maria, do you have an extra set of keys to the Jetta?” Isabelle asked.

“Yeah. In my purse.”

“You and Michael keep looking out here. I’ll drive up to the house and start searching there. If one of us finds something, we call the other one, ok?” Isabelle strategized as she tossed Maria’s purse to her.

“I don’t think we should split up,” Michael countered.

“We have to if we’re going to find them. You don’t have to approach them if you do run into them…just call me and wait,” Isabelle commanded.

“Fine,” Michael reluctantly agreed.

Isabelle jumped in the Jeep and drove towards the house as Michael returned to Maria’s side. “You’re not leaving my sight,” he grumbled as he took her hand in his, guiding them to the part of the field they hadn’t searched yet.

“Michael, do you really think Max is dangerous?” Maria questioned.

“I trust Isabelle’s judgment,” he said simply.

“That’s not what I asked. You’ve been alone with him, gotten to know him. I want your opinion.”

“I don’t know,” he said as he shook his head. “I really don’t know what to believe. If you had asked me a few weeks ago, when the guy was scared of his own shadow, I would have said no way,” he said as he squeezed her hand.

“And now?” she asked.

He stopped walking as he thought for a moment. “Isabelle told me about a strange conversation she had with him at the New Year’s party. He asked her to protect Liz. When she told him she would keep Liz safe from Jake, he made her promise to keep her safe from anyone who might try to hurt her.”

“So you think he was talking about himself?” she worried.

“Not at the time, but when Isabelle found those torn out pages it sort of made sense,” he explained his reasoning. Looking at her face, full of concern for her missing friend he asked, “What about you? What do you think?”

“I’ve seen how those two are together. They have that whole soulmate thing going, you know. I just can’t believe he could ever hurt Liz. I guess it could be true, but…” Her thought was interrupted by a loud, popping sound resonating around them. “What was that?” she asked, the fright causing her voice to shake.

Michael urgently pulled her towards the Jetta, breaking out into a run as Maria got her footing behind him. “That was a gunshot,” he explained, “and it came from the old man’s house.”

“MAX!” Liz screamed as she stumbled towards her fallen mate. Collapsing by his side, she immediately noticed the dark stain forming on his shirt and realized the reason for the crippling pain coursing through her own body.

‘My Beauty?’ his voice whispered so softly she could barely hear him.

Gathering him in her arms, she leaned down and covered his face with soft kisses as her tears rained over him. ‘I’m here, my mate. I’m right here.’

‘I’m so scared, Liz. Why can’t I see you?’

‘Shhh, my love. You’re hurt, but I’m sure Michael will be here soon. He can heal you,’ she told him as she prayed it was the truth.

‘I love you, my mate. I’m so sorry,’ he said with a finality that frightened her as the searing pain emanating from his damaged body began to subside, becoming a dull numbness slowly spreading through their connection.

‘Don’t apologize. You have nothing to be sorry for,’ she pleaded as she gently rocked him, tenderly stroking his face as she nuzzled his warm skin.

‘Will you sing to me, my Beauty?’

Forgetting that his stunning amber eyes were incapable of sight, she nodded before she started to whisper their song to him, most of the words choked by the tearful lump in her throat.

“Come stop your crying, it will be all right. Just take my hand, hold it tight. I will protect you from all around you. I will be here, don’t you cry. For one so small, you seem so strong. My arms will guide you, keep you safe and warm.” She soothingly rubbed his arm as she pressed a loving kiss on his open mouth.

“This bond between us can’t be broken…” she sobbed as she brought his wrist up to her lips and kissed the symbol she had placed there. “I will be here, don’t you cry. You’ll be in my heart. From this day on, now and forever more. You’ll be in my heart. No matter what they say. You’ll be here in my heart always.”

His breathing was getting shallower and more labored, but as she felt his loving warmth surround her, she continued, “Why can’t they understand the way we feel? They just don’t trust what they can’t explain. I know we’re different, but deep inside us we’re not that different at all. Don’t listen to them
‘Cause what do they know? We need each other to have, to hold. They’ll see in time, I know we’ll be together. When destiny calls you, you must be strong. I may not be with you, but you’ve got to hold on. They’ll see in time, I know. We’ll show them together.” She brushed a wisp of hair away from his forehead to place chaste kisses there and on his cheek, just as she had done the night he returned to her. His breathing was so shallow now that she could no longer feel it coming from his nose or mouth.

“NO! NO! Oh, God, please. No,” she cried as she held his increasingly lifeless form in her arms. “Please, Max. Wake up. You can’t leave me. I can’t live without you.”

His unseeing eyes stared back at her as she held her hand over his chest in a futile attempt to stop the bleeding. Tearing his shirt open, she hoped that maybe she could heal him. How had he healed her? Trying to remember how she had placed the commitment symbol on his wrist, she blocked the unbearable grief from her mind as she concentrated on the wound. She pictured his torn organs and skin knitting back together as she gazed into his empty eyes, but the warm tingle of his energy flowing through her refused to materialize.

“Liz?” a voice asked as a pair of hands grasped her shoulders, trying to pull her away from him.

“DON’T TOUCH HIM!” Liz shrieked as she recognized Isabelle’s face hovering next to hers. “Haven’t you done enough damage already?” Pulling his warm body as close to hers as possible, she buried her head in the side of his neck, her tangled dark hair shrouding the two lovers from the cruel world surrounding them. “Just leave us alone.”

“Liz, if I could heal him myself, I would,” Isabelle asserted through tear soaked lashes. “Keep holding on. Michael will be here any minute.”

‘It’s all right. You’re going to be all right, Max. Just hang on…Michael is almost here.’

“Liz, what’s happening?”

The sound of Isabelle’s usually confident voice suddenly filled with terror caused Liz to tear her face away from her love’s. She followed Isabelle’s line of sight down to her hip, where her commitment symbol had been exposed by her state of undress. As the two girls watched, the symbol itself mutated from dark to white as the surrounding skin blackened.

Grabbing Max’s wrist she noticed his symbol had done the same thing, just seconds before her heart and mind and soul were stripped of his comforting presence.

“No, Max, no,” she begged as she pulled his body close again, but she knew it was hopeless.

Her mate was dead.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 13-Aug-2002 1:29:20 AM ]
posted on 14-Aug-2002 2:04:13 PM by SansuCry
Chapter 73

“Oh, shit!” Maria exclaimed as she and Michael came upon two lifeless bodies, one bordered by two grieving young women and the other completely ignored. Isabelle had described the situation to her over the phone, but nothing could have prepared her for the harsh reality of being surrounded by death.

“Michael, thank God,” Isabelle sighed heavily as her brother ran towards her.

Liz’s head shot up to look at the other alien, her tearful, pain-filled eyes pleading with him as she begged, “Michael please. Bring him back to me. I can’t live without him.”

Michael looked to Maria and Isabelle, and when he saw the same pleading look in their eyes he knelt down in the dirt without protest and took Max’s body from Liz’s arms, laying him flat on the ground. He immediately put his palm over the fatal wound and began to concentrate, a small shimmer appearing where a healing hand contacted damaged flesh.

Maria bent down next to her friend and took her by the shoulders. “Liz, why don’t you give him some room to work while we get you dressed?” she suggested.

“No, I’m not leaving him,” Liz firmly declared as she took Max’s hand in hers and brought it up to her lips. ‘Come back to me, my mate,’ she soundlessly commanded as her tears blinded her. ‘We have a whole lifetime of things to experience together. We still have to get married…we have to go to the coast and see the ocean…we have to ride a roller coaster…you have to meet my parents…we have to walk into the building hand in hand for your first day of school…I have to make you your first birthday cake…I want you to hold me in your arms as we watch the sun set over the Grand Canyon…I want to travel the world with you and make love to you for hours at a time wherever we go…we have a whole family of babies to make together. Please, my love, fight to come back.’

“Michael?” Maria whispered as she watched her boyfriend heal the alien who meant everything to her best friend. The stress of using his energy was quickly beginning to take its toll, his body shaking with weakness as he broke out into a cold sweat. Keeping his eyes tightly closed to block out any distractions, he almost faltered at the sound of Maria’s voice.

Isabelle took her by the arm and guided her away from the small group.

“Is Michael going to be ok?” Maria asked her, the worry and fear clearly showing on her face. She wanted Michael to help Max, but not at the expense of his own life. She didn’t think she could handle seeing yet another dead body, especially her own boyfriend’s.

“He’s only tried to heal something this severe one other time,” Isabelle answered pointedly. “He was all right, but it wore him out so bad that he slept most of the next day. I just told my folks he was warn out from the concert.”

Maria looked back over to the trio on the ground, her heart leaping into her throat as she watched the haunted look on Liz’s face. “Max doesn’t look so dangerous now,” she observed bitterly.

“I know,” Isabelle replied with remorse as her own gaze focused on her brother and her friends. “My instincts are telling me that he is dangerous, but I just can’t see how he could be. He’s Max. He’s the guy who asked me to help him buy bubble bath for his girlfriend. And look at Liz. Those two have something so deep that it’s almost frightening. If Michael isn’t successful at healing Max, I really think she is going to end up dying, too.”

“I don’t want to hear that,” Maria said with a wave of her hand, knowing full well from her own observations of the couple that Isabelle was most likely right. She couldn’t bear to lose her best friend after all that they’d been through.

“There’s something else you might not want to hear…”

“UH!” Michael growled as he slumped over, his body finally succumbing to the immense physical strain of his curative work.

“MICHAEL!” Maria cried out as she dashed to her boyfriend, Isabelle right on her tail.

“NO! Please don’t stop!” Liz begged haltingly, her grief and tears making speech nearly impossible. The crushing loneliness she had felt the two times Max had blocked himself from her was nothing compared to the excruciating emptiness that now consumed her. She and Max had truly become one in every way, and she knew she couldn’t exist without her other half.

Liz curled up into a fetal position alongside Max, and Isabelle knelt down next to her to offer some comfort as Maria tended to Michael, her heart aching for the girl falling apart in front of her.

“Where’s the gun? Bring me Jake’s gun,” the anguished girl begged. “I can’t stand this. I want to be with him. Let me die with him, please.”

Isabelle stroked her mourning friend’s hair soothingly. Just as she considered actually granting Liz her request, she noticed a slight movement out of the corner of her eye. Jerking the girl up by the shoulders, she yelled, “HE’S BREATHING!! Look Liz! He’s breathing!!”

Liz froze in Isabelle’s arms, afraid to hope that it was really true. She swiped her face several times to clear the tears from her eyes, and when she could finally see again, she looked to where Isabelle was pointing. Her whole body began to tremble with elation at this first sign of renewed life, despite the disturbing thought that her mate’s calming presence was still absent from her mind and soul.

“You came back! You came back to me!” she cried as she threw herself across his body, her eyes now filling with tears of happiness. Raising her head from his now breathing chest just enough to face her friends, she exclaimed with heartfelt happiness, “Thank you, Michael. Thank you so much.”

Michael barely had enough energy to whisper, so Maria relayed his softly spoken words. “There was a lot of damage…he got it all, but Max lost a lot of blood…he’ll probably stay unconscious for a while…we need to move him to someplace warm.”

Liz nodded her acceptance. “We’ll take him back to the motel.”

“Michael, are you going to be able to move?” Maria asked.

He held up a couple of fingers, indicating that he would need a few minutes before making the attempt.

Isabelle stood up and retrieved Liz’s jeans and shoes from where they were piled next to Jake’s body. She put her hand on Liz’s shoulder and handed them to her friend, not wanting to embarrass her any more than necessary. Liz reluctantly moved off of Max, released his hand, and covered him with his torn shirt as best she could. She quickly stood up to put on her jeans then bent over to slip her shoes on, and as she stood up her eyes immediately rested on Jake’s motionless form.

In four long sprints she was beside him, kicking his corpse over and over with all her might as she screamed, “YOU F*CKING BASTARD!! YOU CRUEL, SICK HEARTLESS BASTARD!! I HATE YOU!! I HATE YOU AND ALL OF THEM FOR WHAT YOU’VE DONE TO HIM!! I HOPE YOU ROT IN HELL!! I HATE YOU!! I HATE YOU!!”

“Liz, don’t do this. Max needs you right now,” a voice spoke in her ear. Suddenly Isabelle was restraining her, pulling her away from the monstrous fiend who had stolen so much from her and her mate.

“Let me go!” she barked out in frustration as she struggled against her friend. Eager to annihilate the vile being’s remains for all the pain he had wrought, she didn’t flinch as a series of blinding white flashes filled the air, the force of them finally knocking the two girls to the ground.

“What was that?” Maria yelled fearfully as she shielded Michael from the blast that had been just a few feet away.

Isabelle resolutely propped herself up on her elbows while Liz remained flat on her back, her arm covering her eyes as she gasped for air. Surveying the pulverized heap of ashes where Jake’s body had just been, Isabelle said matter-of-factly, “That is what happens when an Antarian uses her warrior abilities.”

“Why did you do that? He was already dead!” Maria cried out.

“I didn’t do it,” Isabelle commented. “Liz did.”

ME?” Liz ask as she sat up abruptly. “That’s impossible! I’m not Antarian.”

“Well, somehow you just managed to blast Jake to kingdom come. I know I didn’t do it.”

Filled with hope Liz looked over her shoulder, certain that she would see Max sitting up and taking responsibility for the destruction of his tormentor. Her heart sank a little as she observed his still unmoving form, but as she watched his chest rising rhythmically with his breaths she gave Michael another thankful look. Too tired to stand she crawled over to where Max lay and wrapped her arms around him, using the last of her strength to pull his upper body into her lap. She brushed her face against his, reveling in the feel of light puffs of air tingling her sensitive skin.

“I don’t think I want to hear this,” Maria muttered.

“I told you you probably wouldn’t,” Isabelle said glibly.

“What are you talking about?” Liz and Maria asked in unison.

Isabelle rolled her eyes like she was talking to a bunch of kindergartners. “I tried to tell you before, Maria, but we got interrupted.”

“Tell me what?” Maria asked suspiciously.

Isabelle’s eyes darted from Maria to Michael and finally settled on Liz. “By the time I spotted them back here, I was still too far away to do anything but I saw it all happen with my own eyes. Jake shot Max then turned the gun on Liz but before he could shoot again, she blasted him.”

“But how could she do that?” Maria asked skeptically.

Liz tenderly caressed her lover’s cheek as she willed him to use her love to regain consciousness. Recalling the distinct sensation of the energy surge she had felt from Max’s nightmare of escaping from Jake and from the images he had given her of the mall incident, the same feeling she had experienced just moments earlier, she knew Isabelle spoke the truth. “Max,” she replied to Maria pensively. Raising her eyes to Isabelle she concluded, “Max’s warrior power has been transferred to me somehow.”

“That’s crazy!” Maria adamantly exclaimed, yet in the back of her mind it somehow seemed fitting that these two were destined to share every part of themselves with each other.

“Max tried to blast Jake, but he told me he couldn’t. I just assumed he meant he couldn’t go through with it, but he must have been saying it was physically impossible for him to do it,” Liz commented.

Maria gave Isabelle an incredulous look. “So you’re telling me that my best friend, sweet, innocent, little Lizzie Parker over there killed Jake?”

“And if I could do it a thousand more times, I would in a heartbeat,” Liz said venomously. “Death is nowhere near a severe enough punishment for what that bastard did to Max, what he’s done to God knows how many others, what he would have done to me.” The intense hatred in her voice belied the gentleness with which she continued to touch her stricken mate, her hands constantly in motion as she adoringly stroked his warm, smooth skin.

Maria was take aback by this newly revealed side of her lifelong friend, but as she looked down at her own exhausted boyfriend, she completely understood the protective nature behind Liz’s spiteful words. “How are we going to get these guys out of here?” she inquired as she tried to divert their attention away from the horrendous situation.

“Michael, do you think you can walk if Maria and I help you?” Isabelle asked.

“Yeah,” he managed to choke out.

“Liz can stay here with Max while you and I get Michael to the Jetta,” Isabelle directed Maria. “Then we’ll come back so the three of us can carry Max to the Jeep. Is that all right with you, Liz?”

Liz’s dark mane nodded in agreement as she lovingly peppered Max’s face with soft kisses, her hair a veil of privacy for the intimate moment. She heard movement as the other two girls helped Michael to his feet and slowly walked towards the Jetta, but it only faintly registered as she focused all her attention on the beloved man in her arms. Tears trickled down her face as she spoke to him aloud, praying that it might prompt him to awaken. “From the first night I saw you I felt this need to protect you, and I promised I would keep you safe. I failed miserably, my love. I let that monster do all those horrible things to you, and if I could change that I would. I’d go back in time and give you up if I knew you’d be safe. You don’t have to worry anymore…he can never hurt you again. Now that I know I have your warrior ability I’ll spend the rest of my life making sure no one else hurts you either. Please wake up, my mate,” she pleaded. “I need you more than I need my next breath of air.”

She continued to hold his unresponsive body close to her, her head resting on his chest to relish the strong heartbeat within. The girls eventually returned from helping Michael, and with much effort the three of them got Max situated in the back of the Jeep, Liz once again holding onto him for dear life. She almost hoped he wouldn’t awaken while they transported him back to the motel, afraid of his reaction to riding in a vehicle in light of all that had occurred.

As they made the trek back into town, her mind roamed to Max’s current physical condition. What would happen when he did regain consciousness, she wondered, refusing to let her mind believe that he might never come out of this comatose state. If his body had been starved for oxygen for too long, would he have any side effects? Would he remember everything she had taught him, or would he revert back to his feral self? What if he didn’t even know who she was? Could he possibly forget the special love they shared? What did the blackening of their commitment symbols mean? Were they no longer committed to each other? She believed the bond was permanent beyond even death, but what if she were wrong? Would he refuse to recommit himself to her?

So much had happened over the past several days that no matter what the status of their bond, there was a lot they needed to discuss. She could only hope he would finally understand and accept the depth of her love for him because she didn’t think they could move forward to deal with any of their problems until he did. She wanted nothing more than to break the chokehold the past held on him so that they could work together on planning their future, a life of loving and happiness and family that she would convince him he deserved.

At least she now understood why he had never healed his scars. The Antarians had brainwashed him into believing that he was nothing more than a useless creature, not even worthy of the meager amount of food they bestowed upon him. Those feelings and the guilt over the accidental murders he had committed must have stayed with him when he was sent here to Earth, and because of this he somehow felt all the brutal things Jake had done to him were justifiable punishment for what he was. The scars were some twisted reminder of his perceived worthlessness.

He would need to have some kind of help to handle the trauma of being raped, but would he be able to trust anyone enough to open up and discuss it with them? She sensed that she was the only person he would confide in, but she was certainly not trained to give him the guidance he needed. In this instance especially, her unconditional love alone would not be enough to heal him.

Analyzing the fatal events of earlier she wondered whether she would have her own emotional scars to deal with as the reality of killing Jake set in. The self-satisfied glint in his eye as he revealed Max’s degradation had sickened her for only a moment before overwhelming hatred replaced her nausea, hatred that had spurred her to action. She had wanted to hurt him. She had wanted him dead. Even if he had not shot Max, she had no doubt that she still would have made Jake pay with his life for his immeasurable cruelty. And she knew she would never regret that.

“Liz, we’re here,” Isabelle’s voice broke into her troubled thoughts. Maria and the blonde alien were standing next to the Jeep expectantly, and she realized that they must have been trying to rouse her for several minutes now. She nodded her acknowledgment and lifted Max’s body as high as she could, waiting for the other two to take his weight off of her. As soon as she was free to move she climbed out of the vehicle and helped carry Max to the room. She reached into her pocket for the room key, but before she could retrieve it the door swung open to reveal a very concerned Juanita.

“Dear Lord, what happened to you?” the matronly woman questioned. Looking over the bedraggled crew as they brought Max in and laid him on the bed, she implored, “Where did all that blood come from?”

They had all been so entrenched in the terror of the moment that none of them had realized Max’s dried blood covered Liz’s shirt and arms, as well as his own torn clothing. “It’s not as bad as it looks,” Liz fibbed. “Max just got caught up in the middle of a fight and got knocked out.”

“Are you sure he’s all right?” Juanita asked as she gave the motionless young man a quick once-over.

“Yeah. I think he just needs some rest,” Liz replied, giving her friends a look that told them to leave before Juanita became suspicious.

“We’re going to take Michael home,” Isabelle said. “Call us there if you need us.”

“I don’t have a phone,” Liz answered, trying to disguise the panic in her voice. How much would she have to reveal to Max’s friend?

“I’ll bring you mine,” Maria answered as she and Isabelle headed for the door.

Juanita and Liz stood in awkward silence as they waited for Maria to return. She quickly pressed the phone into the palm of Liz’s hand and said a fast good-bye before running back out the door.

“I’m glad you found him,” the older woman said. “Where was he?”

Liz ran a frustrated hand through her hair as she looked down at her unmoving mate on the bed, the bed in which they had loved each other countless times, the bed that just hours earlier she was certain she would never see again. “He was at an abandoned house he lived at before I met him.”

“So did you get things straightened out before his ‘fight?” Juanita asked, knowing something wasn’t quite right but not wanting to push the girl. Whatever had happened must have been severe, for the dirty, disheveled person in front of her was not the same Liz she had met that morning. As long as Max was not physically injured, she’d let it drop for now.

“Yes and no. We have a lot left to talk about,” Liz said sadly. She added in a sincere tone, “Thank you for helping me.”

“No problem, sweetie,” Juanita said as she gave Liz a friendly smile. “I didn’t do anything but baby-sit an empty motel room. The books you dropped in the parking lot are on the table, along with Max’s jacket. I trust you won’t be checking him out of the room now.”

“Not for a while,” Liz answered simply.

“If you’re sure you two are all right, I’ll let you have some privacy.”

“We’ll be fine, really,” Liz forced out a tiny smile. “Thanks for everything.”

Juanita walked over to Liz and gently touched her arm. “If you need anything, they have my phone number at the front desk. Don’t hesitate to call me.”

Liz nodded and then watched Max’s friend walk out the door and shut it tightly behind her.

She knelt down on the floor next to the bed to get a closer view of Max’s chest rising and falling steadily, needing to confirm that at least his body had survived the bullet wound. There had to be some way to get through to him.

She pondered the situation for several long minutes, going over in her mind every last detail of they times they had spent together. A wistful smile crossed her features as she quickly jumped up and ran to the door, hoping to catch Juanita before she got too far away. She had the perfect plan for bringing her mate back to her.

And she prayed with every fiber of her being that it would work.

After reading a few of the responses to that last chapter, I feel I have to reiterate what Taffy said. The act of rape has absolutely NOTHING to do with sex--gay, straight or otherwise--and everything to do with violence, power and controlling another person. It is used as a weapon in the same manner as a knife or a gun by sick, evil men like Jake, who just happens to be the antithesis of of our sweet, loving gentle Max. The supreme irony is that all along Max believed he was the one who was the monster.

As far as why Max "responded" to the rape, I will address that later on in the story, but the short explanation is that it is purely a physiological response, not because there was any enjoyment. Many rapists use that response to shame victims, especially male ones, into silence because the victim fears it means he is either gay or perverted.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 14-Aug-2002 2:09:23 PM ]
posted on 18-Aug-2002 11:09:27 PM by SansuCry
Here's the deal:

I planned to post the new part tonight, but more than half of it sucks and I can't stand it. SOOOO, I'm scrapping most of it and starting over. Good news is that it will be a lot better when I fix it.

Bad news is it may be as late as Wednesday night before I post it.

Sorry guys,


Oh, BTW, shameless plug here. I posted a one parter a few days ago--Tess POV post EOTW written before we knew what a waste that episode would be.

I wrote it before EoF and because I only got two fb's when I posted it on the old board, I came very close to never posting the first part to EoF.

Anyway if you're interested in reading it, here is the link:
My Future Destiny
posted on 20-Aug-2002 1:02:19 AM by SansuCry

After 73 chapters, I finally have a banner!!! Whoo! Whoo! Thanks so much to BordersInsanity for making it. I think it fits the story perfectly.

FINALLY!! This part was driving me crazy, but I believe I got it to flow the way it should. I had to scrap 60% of it and start over to do so...but such is the life. You guys give me such great feedback that this fic is worth every moment I spend working on it. Let me know how well you think Liz did with her plan.

BTW, about 15 chapters ago I mentioned that I had the next 15 chapters planned out, and some people thought that meant there would only be that many chapters 'til the end of the story. Well, I've got a LOT more story to tell and I just love these characters too much to give them up, so I'd say there is a MINIMUM of 20 more parts before I close up shop...hope you're not disappointed. *wink* I'm even thinking of ways to write a sequel, but when the time comes I'll more than likely need your input on that.

One last note: Faith was kind enough to morph the picture of the commitment symbol to black for me. I think it is eerily beautiful…here’s the link if you want to check it out:
Blackened Symbol

Now let's get to the story...

Chapter 74

“Thanks for bringing this stuff, ‘ria. I didn’t mean to pull you away from Michael, but Max’s friend Juanita had already left. Besides, I think that extra ingredient is going to help a lot.”

“No problem, chica. I needed a break from seeing Spaceboy in that condition anyway, and Isabelle is still there with him,” Maria answered. Indicating the items she had brought she added, “I didn’t mix them together, so you’ll have to do that part.”

Liz nodded her understanding.

“I hate to bring this up, but what are you going to tell your folks?” Maria asked with a very concerned expression.

Liz sighed. “I don’t know, and right now I can’t think about it. I did call the Crashdown and leave a message with Jose that I’m fine and to not worry and that I won’t be home for at least another day. Beyond that, well, I’ll have to worry about it later.” Wanting to get on with her plan she asked, “Can you stay and keep an eye on him for a few minutes? I really need to get a shower.”

“Of course. Take your time,” Maria said reassuringly. Watching her friend walk into the bathroom and shut the door, she wondered exactly what had gone on out at the old man’s house. Liz’s state of undress had frightened her, and she was scared of what Jake might have done to the girl before she had guaranteed his permanent demise. Liz’s own hateful statement only made that fear more pronounced.

This whole day had been one protracted, exhausting nightmare, and she knew that the ramifications of what had occurred would be far-reaching and long lasting. The day she learned aliens existed seemed like a walk in the park compared to this. Two dead bodies. One brought back to life, and by her boyfriend no less. The other nothing more than a pile of dust because of her best friend’s newly discovered alien power. Michael nearly joining Max in death as his own alien abilities drained his life force from him. Yes, this was definitely a day she would not soon forget.

Now that the immediate danger had passed Liz’s skin had begun to crawl at the remembered feeling of Jake’s hands on her body. As she stripped off her jeans just the thought that he had touched her in the secret places meant only for her mate’s loving caresses made her stomach churn violently. A flash of the defeated look of humiliation on her lover’s face as Jake revealed the depths of his own evilness was all it took for her to dash to the toilet and rid her stomach of the bile that had been threatening to spill from it for the past few hours.

A pair of comforting hands pulled her tangled hair from her face as she sobbed into the cold porcelain fixture. Maria’s reassuring voice whispered in her ear, “Come on, sweetie. I know it’s hard, but you have to keep it together. Max needs you. You’re the only one who can heal him now.”

The truth of the words infused Liz with the determination to wipe away her tears and pick herself up from the floor. Giving her friend a grateful smile that indicated she would be able to proceed with no further breakdowns, she was left to quickly remove the rest of her clothing and cleanse her body of the physical remnants of the day’s ordeal.

“I left the clothes on the table,” Maria said as she directed Liz’s attention to the plastic grocery bags next to the duffel bag. Isabelle had been the one brave enough to go inside the old man’s house to retrieve Max’s belongings, and Liz knew that she would forever be indebted to the two aliens who had fought against their instincts to help save the life of her mate.

“If this keeps up, though, you’re going to owe me a whole new wardrobe,” Maria continued.

The corner of Liz’s mouth turned up at Maria’s attempt to lighten the somber mood. “I’ll make it up to you. I promise.”

“The best way to do that is to let me see your eyes shine again,” the other girl said honestly as she walked to the door. “Call me if you need anything else.”

Liz simply nodded as she followed behind her friend, locking the door and sliding the security chain closed to completely isolate her beloved soulmate from the cruel world that existed outside the confines of the room.

Wrapping the towel around her a little tighter, she sat down at the table and carefully unpacked some of the items Maria had brought, hoping that despite her distraught state she had remembered to give her friend a complete list of everything she would need. Candles. Matches. Baby oil. Maria’s rose-scented aromatherapy oil. Not wanting to move from her spot she removed the cap to the bottle of baby oil and poured some out into the garbage can, just enough to compensate for the rose oil she would be adding. Setting the bottle down she reached for the small vial and twisted the cork out, cautious to not let any of the precious ingredients leak. With a hand much steadier than she felt she trickled the contents into the larger container before replacing the cap and gently shaking the bottle to complete the mixture, the scent of roses lingering in the air as she worked.

While she had been waiting for Maria to arrive she had gone into the bathroom and removed the liner from the waste basket in there, using one of the wash cloths to rinse the can out before filling it with warm water. She had brought it back to the bed, along with one of the hand towels and a bar of soap. She had removed Max’s shoes and socks before unbuttoning his jeans and working them, along with his boxers, down his hips, struggling to pull the bedding out from under him at the same time. Finally she had tugged the torn, bloody shirt from his mended body, turning him from one side to the other as she pulled the sleeves down his arms.

She had covered him with the blanket, warding off the air that wasn’t quite warm enough despite the higher setting on the thermostat in the room. Wetting the sterile white cloth and then soaping it up she had begun by wiping his face, lovingly washing every part of him she could reach with meticulous care. She had worked her way down his body, exposing only small areas to minimize the chill as she rinsed the dirtied blood from his chest. If she could only rinse away his scars so easily…

Stopping several times to replace the cooling water with a fresh, warm batch she had eventually made it to his legs and feet, wanting to save the most intimate part of him for last. Finishing her cleansing ritual, she had hoped that she could elicit the same type of arousal in him she had done the first time she had washed him. That seemed like a lifetime ago now, a lifetime where she had never touched a man before, hadn’t yet experienced the wondrous sensations of being intimate with her mate. Would she ever make love with him again? When it became apparent that her usually stimulating caresses still weren’t getting through to him she had rinsed him and tucked the blankets in around his unmoving form, anticipating Maria’s arrival at any moment. That led her to where she was now, about to begin the main part of her plan.

He had always craved her touch.

From the moment he had launched himself into her lap that miraculous Thanksgiving Eve up until his feigned betrayal she couldn’t remember a time when they had been together and he had not been touching her in some manner, whether it be just the slightest tranquil grazing of fingertips or the heated full-body joinings attained during their lovemaking. Without a doubt physical contact with his mate was what Max cherished the most, contact that he had been denied in his previous life and had deliberately avoided in this one, until he had met her. She would use this knowledge to entice his mind and soul to return to her, massaging and caressing his entire body in the sanctity of his bed for days on end, if necessary, until she once again felt his essence fill her. He had told her on several occasions that he could never refuse or resist her, and she believed this would be the ultimate test of those admissions.

Picking up the doctored bottle of baby oil she moved to the bed and peeled back the covers to reveal his hybrid body, miraculous in so many ways, before letting her towel drop to the floor. Settling on her knees beside him she poured a tiny amount of the oil into the palm of her hand and placed the rest of it on the nightstand. Rubbing her hands together to warm and distribute the floral-scented fluid, she then picked up his right arm and rested it in her lap. She held his hand between hers, and starting with his fingers she serenely worked the oil into his skin. “These fingers and the things they can do are simply amazing. Sometimes they trail over my skin so lightly that I think I’m imagining them. Other times they touch me with such insistence that I have no choice but to give in to their caresses. I remember sitting in the back of the Crashdown and massaging them just like this when you were so happy learning how to write that you didn’t want to quit. I’ll never forget how wonderful it felt to lay in this bed with you when you slid these fingers inside of me for the first time and made me come for you.” Pressing them to her lips she added, “When your baby is growing inside of me I want to feel these fingers rubbing my belly every night before we go to sleep.”

Moving her lips to his palm she said, “I love this hand because with one touch of it, you opened up an entire world to me. Not only did you heal me with it, but through it you formed a connection with me that allowed me to see the beauty of your soul. I will always be grateful that you saved my life, but more importantly that you shared yours with me. I want the touch of this hand to be the first thing our baby feels when she is born. I want you to clap these hands together with pride as we watch our daughter graduate from school.”

“It should be obvious why I love this wrist,” she said as she kneaded her way up to the commitment symbol she had placed there. “This mark that shows everyone you are my mate means more to me than words could ever describe. I’m not sure why it changed colors, but in my heart I know that we are bound to each other for eternity.” A tear slipped down her cheek as she vowed, “You must come back to me because I refuse to believe a bond as strong and deep as ours can be severed by something as simple as a piece of lead.”

She poured out a few more dabs of oil as she regained her composure. Continuing with her loving ministrations, she softly spoke, “The night we took you out to the storage unit I held your elbows as you stepped into the Jeep for the first time. I know how utterly terrified you were, yet you refused to give into it just so I would be proud of you. You were feeling your own fear so much that you didn’t realize I was even more scared than you because I knew it was too soon for you to be taking such a drastic step. I need you here now so that I can keep you from ever being afraid again. I want to see you cradle our beautiful baby’s head in the bend of this elbow as you gently rock her to sleep.”

Holding his arm to tenderly run her hand up and down the entire length of it, she recalled, “It was so amazing to have your arms wrapped around my waist as we stood in the bell tower together, just taking in the extraordinary site of the city below us. I told you that night that you didn’t have to prove you were worthy of my love. If you believe I’m worthy of yours, please wake up and wrap your arms around me once again. Use these arms to carry me over the threshold of our first home and into our marital bed.”

Stopping at the top of his well-muscled limb she choked with emotion as she whispered, “Each time I touch your shoulders I see you kneeling in the shower the night you saw me naked for the first time. I was so anxious that I wouldn’t be pretty enough for you until I felt how much you loved me, how you so desperately wanted to touch me. I need to feel those things again, my love. I need to feel you caressing me every morning as we shower together. I want to see our daughter’s sleepy little head resting on this shoulder as you carry her into the house after the car ride home from a long day of playing in the park. ”

She lowered his arm back to his side and proceeded to lean over him, trailing her lips down his warm face while bracing her weight on her elbow. “I love your forehead because it is the first part of your body I ever kissed. I want you to lean it against mine as we exchange our wedding vows. I want to feel it pressed against my belly as you whisper sweet words to your baby growing inside of me.”

Kissing his still closed eyelids, she commented, “With your eyes closed your dark lashes always make you look so peaceful as you sleep. I can’t wait to hear our daughter’s laugh as you use those lashes to give her dozens of butterfly kisses.”

Trying to put the hollowness of the deathly gaze that had clouded his now lidded eyes out of her mind she swallowed hard and continued, “I’m always awed when I look into your eyes and see them filled with so many emotions, so much love and desire for me that I can’t help but be humbled. I want to see the tears of happiness that will fill them when I tell you that we’ve made a baby together.”

Kissing down the bridge of his nose she secretly whispered, “I love the feel of your nose snuggled against the back of my neck as we lay in bed together. I want you to spend endless nights loving me that way, holding me tightly against you as you slowly move inside of me.”

“These glorious cheeks of yours always flush with passion when we are making love. I want to see that radiance in them again. I want to feel your cheek resting against my head and your arms around me as we stand at the edge of the Grand Canyon watching the sun set together. I want to hear your laughter as our daughter returns every one of your butterfly kisses on this cheek.”

Fighting the tears that threatened to spill from her eyes and onto him, she pressed her quivering lips to his motionless ones and held them there, wishing with all her heart that his mouth would willingly open underneath her. She reluctantly pulled away and said in a shaky voice, “Your lips are wonderful for so many reasons. The sweet words that pass through them always make me feel so cherished. I remember the night you came back to me. After I bathed you, you were so exhausted that you could barely move, but before you drifted off to sleep you said the most exquisite thing to me: Liz. Max. Home. It’s time to remember that I am your home, my mate. It’s time to return to me.”

She gave him another subdued kiss. “ I also love how you take my breath away with the slightest touch of your lips against mine. All those kisses we shared as you learned how to read and do math were just as much positive reinforcement for me as they were for you. Now you have to wake up so that I can properly reward you for those extra friends you made at the New Year’s party.”

A third sedate kiss. “Of course I can’t forget how amazing it feels to have these lips touch me in other places as well. I remember the first time you tasted me, the night you showed up in the Crashdown with your new haircut. You looked so sexy that I couldn’t keep my hands off of you, and when you took me upstairs and made love to me with your mouth I was certain that I had died and gone to heaven. If that’s where you are right now, my beloved, then please come back and use these lips one more time to bring me to heaven with you.”

“There are so many more things I want to see this mouth do,” she said as she traced his lips with her thumb. “I want to lay in bed with you and our children and watch these beautiful lips read ‘Green Eggs and Ham’ to them. I want to feel them pressed against mine when you’re told you may kiss your bride.” Blushing in the darkened room she said quietly, “On your birthday I want to spread some of the leftover frosting from your cake onto these lips and show you how to enjoy two desserts at once.”

Shifting lower, she nuzzled the right side of his neck as her naked breasts pressed into his bare chest, an act that usually stimulated him now merely emphasizing how dead he was to her despite his steady breathing. Refusing to give into despair she continued, “I feel my breath on your neck and I think about the first time I gave you love bites here. My thoughts about doing it to let Tess know you were mine caused you to emit the most charming laugh I have ever heard. I need to hear that laugh again, my love.”

She took the bottle of oil from the nightstand and set it on the bed next to her before moving to straddle his hips. She brought her lips down to his chest and placed demure kisses on each of the scars that marred his otherwise flawless skin, knowing that all of Michael’s healing energy had gone into repairing the damage from the bullet. Even then, there was still a chance that it had not been enough. Unwilling to consider that possibility she affectionately stroked the sides of her face against his warm flesh, taking in the mixture of roses and soap that had begun to permeate the air and fill her senses. After resting her weary body there for several minutes, imagining his hands threading through her damp hair and caressing her naked back as he held her close to him, she gathered enough strength to continue her loving narrative.

Hesitantly pulling her upper body away from his she poured some more of the scented oil into her hands, cautious to not use too much as she tenderly palmed his chest. “I’m sure you think the day we committed ourselves to each other was the most important day of my life, but it wasn’t. The night I shaved off your beard is, because that is the night you asked me to touch you. The pure joy I felt through our connection as you let me love you like this, just running my hands over your bare skin, is the most powerful sensation I have ever experienced. For me it even surpasses the immense pleasure you give me when we come together, and I will spend the rest of my life here in this bed adoring you with my hands and worshipping you with my lips if that’s what it takes to feel that joy course through my body just one more time. I want to be able to wrap my arms around your neck at our wedding reception and lean my head against this strong chest to listen to the soothing rhythm of your heartbeat while we have our first dance as husband and wife.”

Sitting up a little straighter she tossed her hair over her shoulder as she explained, “When I rub my hands over your stomach I remember all the dinners I left for you outside the Crashdown, hoping that someday you would learn to trust me enough to make me a part of your life, praying that you would come back to me. I loved hearing the not so quiet rumblings coming from here on Christmas Day when we were so busy loving each other that we didn’t even want to stop to eat. I want to hear those rumblings again when we’re dancing together at our twenty-fifty anniversary party, and when our family and friends hear the noise it will be our little secret that we’ve spent the past two days in bed celebrating.”

Wiggling down his body until she was nestled completely between his legs, she oiled her fingers again before massaging them over his right hip, resting her head against his navel and tenderly laving the skin just above his wiry hair. “I love sitting over your lap and feeling your hips underneath me. When we make love that way it feels so wonderful to be able to hold your face in my hands and kiss you all over. I want to have you under me again so I can run my hands through your hair and feel your bare chest rubbing against mine as we come together. And when we aren’t in that position, I want my legs wrapped tightly around your hips instead, holding you deep inside of me while our love and desire overflow our connection.”

Lowering her hand to caress the upper half of his leg she whispered reverently, “The bubble bath you gave me Christmas Eve as I sat safely cuddled between these strong thighs was more erotic than I could have ever dreamed possible. Every time I breathe in the scent of strawberries I’m back in that bathtub with you. I want to see how sexy these thighs will look in a pair of spandex athletic shorts as we bicycle around Europe on our honeymoon, or how gorgeous they’ll be in just a pair of cutoff Levi’s as we go wading into the Pacific Ocean together.”

More oil was trickled into her hand as she sat up on the end of bed. “I’m sure this knee was a little sore the day you and the boys played with that remote control car. I lost track of how many times you had to kneel down to retrieve it from under one of the vehicles in the parking lot, but I’ll never forget the endless smiles that lit up your face as you laughed along with Cambell and D.J. I want to see more of those smiles, my love, and I know the boys need you in their lives not only to play cars with, but also to be a role model for them. After this knee is worn out from years of bending down to talk to Ginny as she sits in her rocking chair, I’ll take pity on you and have our living room carpeted so crawling around on the floor with our babies won’t be so uncomfortable for you. When they’re taking their naps, maybe we can see how comfortable the carpeting feels on my back…or yours.”

Tenderly working down both sides of his calf, she administered her healing in silence for several minutes, staving off the ache that was beginning to threaten her willpower. Forcing herself to remain positive she continued, “How many times have I awakened to find this ankle tangled up with mine? I’ve gotten so used to having you in my bed that it’s nearly impossible to fall asleep without you there. I need you to open your eyes for me now so that after we make love later tonight we can fall asleep together, ours ankles rubbing against each other as our bodies relax. I want to see this ankle get a workout as you kick around a soccer ball with our daughter in the backyard, flexing it as you jump up and down when she scores the winning goal at her weekend game.”

She backed off the bed and onto the floor as she took another drop of oil. “I want you to use this foot to press on the brake pedal and the accelerator as I teach you how to drive my car, once my folks get one for me. I’ll have to make sure I choose one with a big back seat like the Jeep so I have lots of room to give you huge amounts of positive reinforcement. I want these feet to walk down the aisle with me on our wedding day, after we are pronounced husband and wife.” Several gathered tears finally breaking away to rush down her cheeks, she concluded, “I’m so grateful for all your strength and courage and most of all the persistence it took to walk back to me on these feet, from Lord knows how many miles away. What do I have to do for you to return to me now?”

Once she had completed massaging the last of his toes Liz reversed her direction and worked her way up the other half of Max’s still unmoving form until she was at his fingertips. She dotingly touched and caressed his body one more time then covered him with loving kisses, the silence of the room alarmingly comforting and terribly frightening all at the same time.

After a third series of touches and kisses Liz’s own body was aching from the awkward positions she had subjected it to, so she reluctantly stood up from the bed and tucked the covers in around Max before she worked the kinks out of her muscles. Glancing at the nightstand’s clock, she understood why the room seemed so dark. Five hours had passed since she and the other two girls had brought Max back to the room, and it was time for the sun to finish its western descent into darkness. She walked to the bathroom and cracked the light’s dimmer switch just enough to give that side of the bed an ethereal glow. Crossing over to the table she removed the rest of the supplies from the bags and strategically placed vanilla-scented candles throughout the room, grouping several of them in front of the mirror to take advantage of its reflective properties.

The nighttime mood set after lighting each of the tall pillars, she returned to the bed and climbed under the covers. She wanted to continue her loving therapy, but the weight of the day’s events had begun to take its toll. Laying on top of her mate and positioning herself to have as much skin-to-skin contact with him as possible, she rested her head on his chest and closed her eyes. His steady heartbeat lulling her to take refuge in her dreams of him, she whispered her last thought before giving in to sleep.

“I promised that you’d never be alone again, my beloved mate. If you can’t return to me, then I will come to you.”

[ edited 6 time(s), last at 21-Aug-2002 7:24:26 AM ]
posted on 22-Aug-2002 12:18:38 AM by SansuCry
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Let me know what you think.

Chapter 75


The leaders had been right. The Zan did not deserve an afterlife.

Especially him.

Why had he so selfishly touched his Beauty, knowing that he could only bring her harm?

No, she was not his Beauty. He was not allowed to have a mate. He could not call her his. It was unthinkable that he had dared to dream of a future with her, but to know that she could still be suffering at Jake’s hands this very moment simply because he had wanted to pretend he was something other than what he truly was, made every loathsome thought he had ever had of himself seem like flattery.

Being in nothingness, not hearing or seeing anything, just existing for eternity with only his tortured memories for company was too good of a punishment for not protecting her when she had needed it the most. The one time his abilities as a Zan might have proven useful, and he had not been able to summon the uncontrollable energy that defined his very existence. He failed her and had paid for it with his life. Such a small cost for what could only be considered an immense failure.

Time had no meaning here, so he did not know how long it had been before the whispers began, insistent little notions of an imagined future that mingled with his memories to mock him for wanting what he would never be worthy of.

Touch Liz. Writing her name. Her beautiful face as she climaxes. Rubbing her pregnant belly. Healing her. Seeing into her soul. Holding their baby. Proud of a daughter as entrancing as her mother. Their commitment ceremony. Feeling the bullet. Riding in the Jeep. Keeping him safe. Rocking their baby to sleep.

He wanted to cry out with the agony of his grief, but he had no voice. Holding her at the church. Carrying her home. Touching her in the shower. Holding their sleeping daughter. Kissed. Wedding vows. Talking to the baby inside of her. Butterfly kisses. Love and desire for her. Tears for a baby.

This was his punishment. To spend eternity alone with dreams of the mate and baby girl he so desperately wanted. Nuzzling her neck. Making love to her. Watching the sun set. More butterfly kisses. Liz. Max. Home. Positive reinforcement. New Year’s party. Haircut. Tasting her. Heaven. Green Eggs and Ham.

The mate and baby girl he would never have. Kiss the bride. Birthday. Frosting. Two desserts. Love bites. Charming laughter. Commitment ceremony. Beard shaving. Her touch. Pure joy.

He did not want to see the beautiful visions of what would never be, but he had no eyes to close. Coming together. Her adoring hands. Her worshipping kisses. Wedding reception. First dance. Husband and wife. Food for him. Christmas Day. Making love. Twenty-fifth anniversary. Celebrating in bed. Making love. Liz touch. Love and desire. Bubble bath. Strawberries. Bicycle. Honeymoon. Cutoff Levi’s. Pacific Ocean.

He did not want to hear her loving voice speaking of a life he could not have, but he had no ears to cover. Remote-controlled car. Smiles. Cambell. D.J. Role model. Ginny. Rocking chair. Carpeting. Crawling with their baby. Naps. Making love. Liz touch. Tangled ankles. In her bed. Making love. Rubbing ankles. Soccer ball. Winning goal. Break pedal.

He could not stand this punishment any longer, but he had no heart to break. Accelerator. Drive her car. Positive reinforcement. Wedding day. Husband and wife. Strength. Courage. Persistence. Return to her.

It was all so painful that he was certain he was dying all over again. If he had to listen to another word or see another image, what remained of him would surely cease to exist under the crushing weight of his misery.

Suddenly there was nothing but blackness again. He welcomed it now. Blackness was better than memories and dreams.

One last whisper so soft he could have imagined it.

“I promised that you’d never be alone again, my beloved mate. If you can’t return to me, then I will come to you.”

Time had no meaning here, so he didn’t know how long it had been before he heard her speak.

“Max!” she called out, the relief obvious in her tone.

“Beauty?” he whispered in amazement.

He had a voice.

Taking in her strange surroundings she observed, “I know this place. I’ve been here before.” Certain she knew her location she asked for confirmation. “Max, is this Antar? Is this the triad compound?”

He had eyes.

The blazing yellow atmosphere. A monumental stone wall. Dry red dirt. Liz.

“Yes,” he answered with bewilderment. Seeing the beautiful apparition in front of him he wondered whether he had conjured her up. “How did I get here?”

“I think I did it,” she answered, just as confused as he was. “I’ve been looking all over for you, and then somehow I knew I’d find you here.”

“Why here?” he asked in a defeated tone as he sat down and rested against the abrasive surface of the wall.

“I don’t know. I just remember being here with you. You said then that instead of coming back to me you should have let Jake kill you. Do you still feel that way now?” A vulnerable quiver filled her voice. “Would you rather be dead than be with me?”

He fought the urge to jump up and take her in his arm to soothe away her distress. “It does not matter what I want. I cannot be with you, Beauty, so I might as well be dead,” he said as his heart filled with agony.

“You think we can’t be together because you are Zan?” she questioned, reiterating what he had told her at the old man’s house.

“Because I can’t stand the thought…of being your murderer,” he admitted with a choking sob.

She sat down on the packed red dirt in front of her mate. “Max, I know you could never hurt me…,”

“Yes I can!” he said emphatically as he ran his hands through his hair in frustration. Taking a few deep breaths he reluctantly explained, “I went to the storage unit to look for the pages from the journal. I couldn’t find them, so I finally left. On the way back to my room I found Jake at a motel, and before I knew what was happening I had blown up his car and the ones around it.”

“With all the things that car represents to you, Max, I’m not surprised,” she said sympathetically.

“But I didn’t do it on purpose, Liz. I had no control over it. It just happened,” he pleaded, hoping she could understand his desperation. “I wanted to kill Jake so badly that I was about to destroy a whole building of innocent people just to get him. A little girl’s scream was the only thing that brought me back to my senses.”

“Right, Max. You didn’t do it. You could have, but you didn’t.”

“But what happens next time? I’m getting more and more out of control, Liz.” Frightened to see her reaction to his next statement he looked away shamefully. “I almost killed you the last time we made love.”

“Why do you think that?” she asked, her voice much calmer than he had expected.

“When we made love…I needed you so desperately that I just wanted to hold you forever and never let go, especially after you so beautifully spoke your commitment to me in Antarian. Never in my greatest dreams had I imagined how amazing it would feel to finally have no barrier between us but when we came, I felt my energy surge into you,” he said sadly. “By the time I realized what was happening it was too late to try to stop it.”

“So that’s what you meant when you said that it was a mistake, that you didn’t want to feel that again,” she commented. Putting the pieces together she asked, “Max, did you destroy Jake’s car before or after you made love to me?”

“Before,” he said quietly. Shaking his head, he closed his eyes as he remembered. “I saw the bite marks on you from when we were drunk Sunday, and I knew that I couldn’t keep pretending that I’m not Zan. If I stayed in Roswell I wouldn’t be able to keep away from you, and not touching you, not being near you is the only way to be sure that I won’t harm you. I had planned to leave town Tuesday night, but then Juanita told me about two waitresses from the Launch Pad being attacked, and I knew it meant Jake had come back to Roswell. I couldn’t leave knowing he was here, so I planned to find him and kill him. Because I was out looking for him, I forgot that Carrie had asked me to go see her. By the time I got to her room, she had already killed herself.”

“Max, you did your best to save her…” Liz comforted.

“The only reason she’s dead is because I did not get to her in time,” he said, his disgust with himself evident in his words.

“You don’t know that for certain.”

“It does not matter now,” he said decisively as he opened his eyes to look at her. “After I caused the explosion at Jake’s motel I ran away and ended up in your bedroom. I should not have gone there, but I just needed you so much. I knew it was the last time I would ever make love to you.” His voice choking with emotion, he paused to collect himself before continuing. “I was certain that I had killed you until I saw you breathing.”

Knowing it was time for Max to hear the truth Liz crawled over to him and took his hand in hers. “Max, I promised you that you’d never be alone again, and as far as I can tell this is a pretty lonely place. You said that you could not refuse me, which technically means I could force you to come back with me. I want to be with you, my mate, but I would never make you do something you do not want to do.” She leaned into him and pressed a tender kiss on his lips. “If you could be with me and know for a fact that you could not hurt me, would you choose that over death?”

“Of course I would,” he said tearfully. Didn’t she know how much it had hurt him to push her away? “You are all I have ever wanted, Beauty, you and that wonderful future you showed me.”

“Then it’s settled. We will be together.”

The resigned tone of her voice suddenly made him panic as he realized an important detail. His tears now quickly choking his throat he said, “I am dead, Beauty. The only way we can be together now is if you are dead also. Please don’t tell me you are dead.”

Placing a chaste kiss on his forehead she replied, “I am not dead, and neither are you, my mate. You’ve just been lost, and I’m here to bring you home where you belong.”

Surely this taunting was just more punishment for his transgressions. “That’s not possible. I’m dead. Our connection was severed, and I felt myself die.”

“Yes, you did die, but Michael brought your heart and your body back to life. Now it’s my turn to bring back your mind and your soul.” Caressing his cheek she stated with conviction, “Our bond cannot be completely broken or I would not be here with you now. We committed ourselves to each other until the end of time, my love, so even death would not separate us.”

He refused to look at her as he whispered, “I’m still a danger to you. I am Zan. This is where I belong.”

“No, Max. You belong with me,” she said, her voice full of determination.

“You don’t know how much I wish that were true,” he said as tears spilled down his cheeks.

“My beautiful Max. My sweet, gentle, loving mate,” she said as she climbed into his lap. Taking his face in her hands, she guided his eyes to meet hers and wiped his tears away. Reciting his own words she said, “The look in my beautiful eyes...” She caressed his cheeks with her thumbs as she pressed her naked breasts into his bare chest. “every touch of my warm skin…” She tenderly brushed her lips against his, tasting his tears’ salty remains. “each sweet taste of my lips made you believe that I could change you, that you could stop being Zan. You were right to believe that my mate, because that is exactly what has happened. You are no longer Zan.”

“Beauty, please. Do not torture me this way,” he begged as tears flowed down his cheek anew.

She kissed her way to his ear and whispered, “Max, you know that you couldn’t kill Jake.”

“And if he is not dead, then I am not to believe a word you have said,” he concluded, giving in completely to his grief as he remembered her impassioned plea at the old man’s house.

She gently tasted the sensitive flesh on the side of his neck. “Believe every word, my mate, for Jake is dead, and I am the one who killed him.”

He froze as her words instantly stopped his tears.

She continued kissing and caressing his neck and shoulders as she enlightened him. “Ever since we made love the night of our commitment ceremony, I haven’t been able to get enough of you. I couldn’t go for more than a few hours without needing to feel you inside of me again. That craving for you didn’t go away until we made such exquisite love Friday morning. My body must have been thirsting for your energy, and with no condom as a barrier between us your energy surged and became a part of me. You are no longer Zan, my beloved mate, and you haven’t been since that moment. We can be together because there is no possible way you can hurt me now. ”

He did not want to stop her from her loving ministrations, but he had too many questions to allow her to continue. He reached up and took her hands in his, directing her to look at him. “You are saying I gave you my warrior ability, that the energy surge was due to me transferring it to you? How can that be?”

“I don’t know, and I don’t really care as long as it means you’ll finally let us be together,” she said hopefully.

He shook his head in disbelief, “No, it cannot be that simple.”

“Max, I didn’t say it was simple, but I think worrying about the how and why of it is the least of our problems. So many things have happened between us, to us, that need to be dealt with, and it would be naïve of us to think that our future is always going to be easy. For every one of those good times I showed you and described, I know there will be an equal number of bad time, too. The only thing we have to decide is whether to face the future alone or together, and I do mean we. If we are going to be together, the days of you hiding things from me and making lifetime decisions for both of us without any of my input are over.”

“Beauty, what if you are wrong about me no longer being Zan? What if something goes wrong and I still end up hurting you?” he asked as his lack of certainty tore at her heart.

“Max, it really doesn’t matter whether or not you are still Zan. People take chances every day, from the time they get out of bed in the morning until they go to sleep at night. People hurt other people, intentionally and accidentally. Car crashes kill people. Fires hurt people. I don’t need to tell you that cruel people, evil people are everywhere, and there will always be someone out there trying to tell you that you are worthless.” She leaned her forehead against his and rubbed the tip of his nose with her own. “And each time they do I will always be right here to give you my support and unconditional love, something you have to be willing to accept without question. Most things in life are uncertain, Max. The best we can do is feel lucky that we are able to find refuge in each other. When the world around us starts to hurt too much we can curl up in bed together and touch and kiss and make love until we’re both healed and ready to handle real life again. That’s the only thing I can offer you that has any kind of guarantee.”

Max sat there silently as he contemplated all she had said, knowing how true it was that things would not be easy for them. He could not deny that he was frightened. She was like him now. She had killed Jake. She wanted to have a future with him, and no matter what happened she would love him. For the first time he had absolutely no reason to not be with her.

His heart now filled with the joy that she so adored, he threaded his hand through her hair and held her close as he caressed her back. His lips descended on hers and kissed her with endless longing as his voice whispered in her head.

‘Take me home, my Beauty.’

Max is a farmer, Liz a developer. What happens when their visions of the American Dream collide? American Dream

[ edited 2 time(s), last at 1-Sep-2002 10:25:46 AM ]
posted on 5-Sep-2002 6:41:55 AM by SansuCry

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No, I haven’t fallen off the face of the earth.

As I’ve mentioned before, I am a night owl by nature. Most of my writing gets done between 10 p.m. and 3 a.m., then I sleep 6 hours until 9. Wellllllll, that was fine and dandy when my daughter was in afternoon kindergarten last year, but now she has to be at school by 8 a.m., and since it takes her forever to get going, we have to be up by 6 a.m. Needless to say this has really screwed up my sleep schedule, and my body is slowly adjusting to sleeping from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m, then staying up for the rest of the day. So for the past week, every time I sit down to write I fall asleep at the computer. Trust me, having a bunch of key mark impressions on the side of your face is not a pretty sight!

A few notes:

Thanks for all the bumps from my faithful bumpers.

Dmatahari and angeld34: Glad to see you’re all caught up with the story again.

StarryEyedGypsy: Thanks for taking the time to read 75 chapters in a row, and please give thanks to whomever recommended my story to you. I’m flattered.

Eccentric One: I am extremely flattered that you chose me to be your 1,000th post. Perhaps this story will go on long enough for me to be your 2,000th as well!

Alien614: I noticed the other day that you’re up to some 1800 posts. It still makes me proud to know that you came out of lurkdom to post your first feedback for my story.

Scottie: Emily (or LeLe as we call her) will be six months tomorrow. I can’t believe it! She’s still growing like a weed and my 6 yr old had a blast the other day because she got her to laugh.

MamaDee and LivE: Are you still reading or have you given up on me?

Everyone else who celebrates Labor Day: I hope you had an enjoyable holiday weekend.

Onto the show!

Chapter 76 (NC-17)


The first thing he noticed was the scent of roses surrounding him, and he was certain he was still in death’s black limbo, remembering the night he had finally made his way to his Beauty’s comforting arms. For the first time in either of his lives he had felt safe and loved there as he had desperately clung to her soft, warm body, holding her tightly as they peacefully slept together in her bed.

This memory was not like the others, though. For one he could clearly inhale the thick scent of roses as it mingled with the intoxicating smell of his mate. And he swore he could actually feel his Beauty in his arms, her heated flesh lightly searing his fingertips as he caressed her bare back. Her silky dark strands of hair felt like spun gold as they filtered through his other hand, while the sensation of her perfect breasts pressing into his chest even as her mouth nipped loving bites on his neck immediately stirred his entire body to life. She felt divine.

He moaned with delight as he came to the realization that this truly was no memory. He really had his precious Beauty in his arms. He felt her smile against his neck as she discovered he was finally awake, sadness stabbing at his heart as the moisture against his throat told him she was crying.


His voice had never sounded more wonderful to her. She could feel the gentle movements of his hands as he lovingly stroked her hair and soothingly rubbed her back, but she was afraid to believe that he was actually conscious. What if she were dreaming? Maybe the entire conversation where she had convinced him to come back to her hadn’t really occurred. Perhaps it was nothing more than her wishful thinking. “I can’t look at you, my mate,” she said as she buried her head deeper into his shoulder.

“Why?” he questioned, the worry in his voice obvious. Did she now regret coming to find him? Or had he just imagined that she had come to him?

A new wave of tears trailed down his shoulder as she finally explained, “I’m afraid I’ll look into your eyes and all I’ll see is that same empty, dead stare.”

“I promise you I am very much alive, my Beauty,” he fervently pledged. “I’ll never leave you again.”

She slowly raised her head from the curve of his neck, her eyes still squeezed firmly shut against the chilling memory of her deceased mate. “Kiss me,” she begged. “If you kiss me then I’ll know you really have come back to me, that I’m not just dreaming you’re here.”

He cautiously raised his head the few inches needed to reach her mouth. Pulling her close to him with the hand threaded into her hair, he languidly drank in the sweetness of her parted lips for several glorious moments before tugging on the lower one to request entrance to her inviting depths.

She welcomed all the love and desire flowing into her as he enthusiastically complied with her anguished appeal, each tender sweep of his tongue a blessed confirmation of his long awaited homecoming. She savored the comforting warmth surrounding her as he refused to stop tasting her yielding lips, only halting when he could no longer breathe. As the two lovers paused to take in some desperately needed air, she broke down into a chorus of relieved sobs.

Max’s own tears easily spilled from the corners of his eyes as he felt his mate fall apart in his arms. He was as grateful as she was that they were together once again, and suddenly all those seemingly torturous memories and glances of their future took on a whole new meaning in the dim candlelight of the room. How he had ever been fortunate enough to have her come into his life was still a mystery to him, and he would spend the rest of his days on Earth showering her with his appreciation and affection for never giving up on their love, even when he had been foolish enough to try to throw it away.

The couple continued their poignant embrace, each mate’s nimble fingers meticulously retracing the minute details of the other’s memorized flesh as they strived to exhaust their tears. Despite his body’s cry for more rest Max knew there was one thing he had to discuss with Liz that was so momentous it simply could not wait until later. The topic itself gave him the boost of energy he needed to continue.

“Beauty?” he began hesitantly.

Liz’s lids finally fluttered open to stare at the man who owned every piece of her heart. If she had thought his absence from her mind had been painful, the myriad of emotions coursing through her at the moment threatened to tear her apart. She could not tell whether he was simply too weak to block any of his feelings from her or he was finally allowing her to experience every part of him. Either way, she relished these sensations from his unguarded soul, if only because it meant his spirit had fully returned to her. Sorting out and coping with the issues surrounding his feelings would come much later. For now, it was enough that he was truly alive again.

It was apparent that he was still weak from his ordeal, yet the spark in his eyes told her that he had something important to tell her no matter how tired he may be. Whatever it may be, it was significant enough that two of his emotions were quickly surfacing to overtake the others. There was a great amount of apprehension, yet underneath the nervousness she felt a sense of awe. What could possibly be causing such a strange combination of feelings? “Yes, my mate,” she answered with a reassuring smile.

“Are you…?” he trailed off. He had to know her answer, but forming the question was more difficult than he ever could have imagined.

She brought her hands up to hold his face as she directed, “Max, you can ask me anything.”

“I know…I just…,” he stumbled as he fought a new wave of tears. He had to get his question out but first, he decided, there was another even more important task to accomplish. Letting her feel his remorse he pleaded, “You do not know how sorry I am that I hurt you, my Beauty. It was the last thing I ever wanted to do. When I said those things to drive you away from me, I honestly believed that you would be better off without me in your life. I told myself that eventually you would get over me and move on…”

“Max, please, you don’t have to explain,” she said as her finger against his lips silenced him. “I’m not going to lie to you. What you did…hurt me…a lot. But I knew in my heart that you never could have betrayed me, and I regret that I let my insecurities get the best of me. I should have pushed you to tell me the truth. So much of this could have been avoided if I had.”

Max tried to speak again, but she insistently kept her fingers pressed to his protesting mouth. “Once Juanita let me know all that had been going on I began to realize what you were doing, but it wasn’t until you told me about the Zan, about your life on Antar, that I understood why you thought such a plan was necessary.” She placed a chaste kiss on his chest before folding her hands there. Almost teasingly she added, “…and why you were irrational enough to think that I would ever let you go through with it.” Momentarily lost on how to continue their discussion, she finally asked, “Do you remember reading anything in my Psychology book about brainwashing?”

He simply shook his head no.

“Brainwashing is when someone in power, someone who has control over you, tells you something that isn’t true over and over so many times that you finally believe it is the truth,” she elaborated. “Max, what the Antarians did to you, to all the Zan, was brainwash you into believing you were some worthless creature that didn’t even deserve to be fed, let alone to be given any kind of affection. I can see why you thought I would get over you…because it had been brainwashed into you that no one could possibly love you, especially as deeply as I do. I don’t think you understood that killing yourself would have taken me right along with you.”

“No, Beauty,” he answered in an anguished tone as he snatched her fingers in his. “I only wanted to keep you safe. After we made love the last time and I saw that I had hurt you, I couldn’t pretend…”

“Hurt me? You did anything but hurt me, my mate. It was so amazing to finally make love with you and not have a condom dulling the sensation. I’ve been waiting for that moment since Christmas Eve when you were in me for those few seconds without one, and it was definitely worth the wait.” Remembering what he had said about her losing consciousness, she observed, “I’m sure that made me pass out more than the energy transfer did.”

“But there was blood, Liz. On your sheets. On me,” he choked out.

“Blood?” she asked in surprise. Her eyes quickly closed in awareness. “Oh, Max,” she said sympathetically as she shook her head, “you didn’t cause me to bleed. It was from my period.”

“Period?” he asked as his brow wrinkled in confusion. “I do not understand.”

“I thought I explained my menstrual cycle to you, but I guess our conversation didn’t quite get that far,” she sighed as she looked at him, his rare combination of sexiness and innocence fascinating her all over again. He had become such a skillful lover, always knowing precisely how and where to touch her to bring her such great pleasure, that she often forgot how little he knew of the other aspects of reproducing. “Do you remember me telling you that if your sperm mixed with my egg a baby would be created and grow inside my uterus?”

He nodded eagerly as sensual images of a very pregnant Liz immediately flashed through his mind. This was what he had wanted to ask her. Was she confirming his suspicion? “Liz,…are you,” his voice broke with emotion, “…are you carrying my baby?”

The hopeful look in his eyes nearly broke her heart. Their lives were so complicated, and they were way too young to be having children of their own, but nevertheless it disappointed her to have to tell him the truth. “I’m sorry, sweetheart. I’m not pregnant.”

“Are you certain?” he asked speculatively, grasping for one last straw. “I thought that if we didn’t use a condom we would make a baby.”

Liz shifted her weight slightly and reached out to caress his face with both of her hands. “I’ve been taking the birth control pills long enough now that we don’t need to use condoms anymore. I won’t get pregnant.”

“But you told me all those things about our baby girl…” he whispered dejectedly.

“I’m sorry, my love. I know how much you want to have a baby, and I was trying to show you the possible future you would be giving up if you decided to not come back to me. I didn’t mean to mislead you.” Giving him a tender kiss she quietly added, “It will happen someday, Max. I promise you that.”

He nodded his understanding, speaking around the lump that had formed in his throat as he replied, “I know in my mind that I should not want this for us now, but my heart…my heart aches to have a baby with you that is the best parts of each of us. I want a girl…”

“…who is as entrancing as her mother,” Liz finished with a smile.

“And as loving as her father,” Max recited. These words sounded so familiar, yet he knew he had never told Liz how desperately he wanted a baby with her, let alone that he wanted that baby to be a girl. He gave her a perplexed look. “How did you know that is what I was going to say?”

“I’m not sure,” Liz said pensively. “It’s sort of like how I knew where to find you in my dream…or whatever that place was,” she answered with a frown. “Dream isn’t really the right word for it. Anyway, I knew we had been at that place before, and I remember what you had said when we were there. The same with wanting a baby girl. I remember you telling me, but I’m sure we’ve never actually discussed it before now.”

“No, we haven’t,” Max confirmed. “I did not talk about it because I was certain that it would never happen.” Liz placed several loving kisses on his chest before he gathered the courage to ask his next question. “Beauty, what does your bleeding have to do with making a baby?”

“Actually the bleeding happens when a baby isn’t made. The blood is part of the lining in my uterus that will help nourish the baby when I eventually do get pregnant. Until then the lining isn’t needed, so once a month my body gets rid of it over a period of a few days.”

“That’s why it’s called your period,” Max concluded. Quietly he asked, “Does it hurt you?”

“No, not really. There is some cramping that can be pretty uncomfortable, but for the most part it is more of an inconvenience than anything.”

“So I didn’t make you bleed?” Max asked, needing to hear her confirmation a second time.

“No, Max. You didn’t make me bleed. You just happened to catch the last day of my period.” Shyly she said, “I would have probably warned you before we made love, but I seem to recall that neither of us was really in a mood to talk…”

Max couldn’t resist a small smile at her accurate observation, but he sobered quickly as he took her hands in his and hesitantly asked, “Beauty, will you ever be able to forgive me for letting you think that I…that Carrie…and I…?” Tears welled up in his eyes as he implored, “You know I could never really do that to you…that you’re the only person I’ve ever wanted, don’t you? You are my entire world, and no matter how many other people I meet, I will never want to be with anyone but you.”

The guilt and shame Max felt over his whole attempt to push her away was only surpassed by the pure anguish it had been for him to do so, and as Liz experienced the potency of all of these emotions first hand she knew she could not be angry with him. In his own naïve way he had truly believed he was doing what was best for her, no matter how terribly misguided his efforts were. How could she possibly not forgive him for valuing her safety above everything else? Bringing their clasped hands to her lips she placidly kissed his knuckles and willed him to feel the strength of her love for him as she gave him her answer. “I’ve already forgiven you, Max, but I want to make sure you understand that I can’t go through something like that ever again…”

“I swear to you, my mate, that I’ll never purposely hurt you again,” he interrupted. “Please just give me the chance to prove it.”

She gave him a rueful look. “I’m not completely blameless here, you know. I didn’t listen to what my heart was telling me, and because of that I believed something that I knew couldn’t possibly be true. I told you that I would never turn away from you, yet at the first test of that commitment I chose to believe the worst.” Loving chocolate eyes reassured remorseful amber ones as she continued. “I’m sure looking back there are many things we both could have handled better or would have done differently, but we can’t change the past. We can only try to make the future better.”

She released his hands and stretched out on top of him, working out the kinks in her sore muscles before climbing off the bed. He felt the loss of her warmth immediately, and as he pulled the covers more tightly to him he took his first good look at where he was. The familiar red numbers on the nightstand clock read 4:20, and by the blackness outside the window he assumed it was early morning instead of late afternoon. A hint of vanilla scented the room as several half consumed white candles spread throughout the darkened abode illuminated Liz’s creamy skin, giving it an ethereal brilliance. She had never looked more beautiful to him.

“Do you think you are strong enough to sit up?” she asked with concern.

“I think I can manage,” he said as he reluctantly pulled the covers aside. The heady smell of roses instantly permeated the air, and he took several penetrating breaths of the calming aroma before he discovered it was coming from him. “I smell like you,” he said with amazement. Propping himself up on his elbows he looked down at his own exposed flesh to notice its own luminous sheen in the candlelight.

“It’s rose scented oil,” Liz explained as she helped him sit up and rest against the headboard, using the pillows to support his back. She hastily climbed into his lap and wrapped the covers around them as close as possible. “I massaged it into your skin.” When he gave her a puzzled look she picked the bottle up from the nightstand and opened it, then took his right hand and poured a tiny amount into his palm. Setting the container down she pressed her own right hand into his, rubbing just enough to distribute the oil between them. With her left hand she guided his right one to her shoulder as she tenderly placed her own right hand on his chest. Using slow circular motions, she proceeded to rub the oil into his already glistening body, neither of them caring that the covers had fallen away from them.

He let out a rich moan of contentment as she worked magic with her agile fingers, each touch lighting a searing flame that burned deep into his soul. Having her skin caressing his had always been the most blissful experience of his life, but that mixed with the feel of the warm oil gliding over his flesh was nothing short of rapture.

Liz’s lips turned up into a sensuous smile as Max’s excitement freely flowed through their connection. This was what she had wanted to feel more than anything: the pure joy that the simple act of touching always seemed to elicit from him. Finally having him awake made each caress a thousand times more meaningful than the ones she had placed on him the previous evening.

After several languorous minutes of massaging him, she concentrated on showing him what to do with his own oiled hand. Her fingers laced with the back of his, she pressed his palm against her tender skin, making small circles over her arm and shoulder until he willingly took over the task of rubbing the sweet smelling mixture into her skin. When he reached the flawless mounds of her breasts, he paused to feel the weight of them in his hands as he laved and suckled each of her hardened nipples with his rooting mouth, the taste of her quickly chasing away the last of his body’s tiredness. He gradually worked his way down her left side and leg, hesitating when he began his return journey on her opposite leg. He gasped when he realized their commitment symbols had automatically altered themselves, but the beseeching look on his mate’s face asked him to wait until later to discuss with her the ramifications of that discovery. He readily complied, devotedly returning his attention to coating her hip and stomach with a thin layer of the rose scented liquid.

He kept her on his lap as he continued to make her shine with the oil, teasing her breasts with his tongue one last time before subjecting them to his lubricated caress. His lips naturally found hers for a round of indulgent kisses each time he had reached for more of the soothing fluid until he could no longer resist the urge to have more of her. Wrapping his arms tightly around his mate he buried his head in her neck and feasted on the tempting flesh he found there, careful to not let his mouth wander to an area he had rubbed with oil. He expertly kept her pressed against him as he lifted both of them up with his powerful legs, maneuvering their bodies until she was on her back with him poised over her. He adjusted his arms underneath her to hold each of her shoulders in his hands as he continued to savor her enticing throat, occasionally traveling higher to plant kisses all over her face as well.

The only sounds Liz could manage to make were small, satisfied whimpers as her lover covered her with his worshipping mouth and adoring hands. The depth of his love for her had always amazed her, but now that he was no longer hiding himself and was allowing her to feel the full force of his emotions she was stunned speechless. How was it possible for such a tormented soul to still possess the capacity to love so intensely?

That question was left unanswered as he gracefully spurred her to ecstasy by brushing his chest and stomach into hers, the tantalizing sensation of his oiled skin erotically gliding against her ravenous flesh causing her own natural lubricant to abundantly moisten her awaiting folds. Two pairs of eyes heavy with desire met seconds before he sank his arousal deep into her welcoming heat, each crying out as their unobstructed joining combined with uninhibited emotions to nearly throw them both back into unconsciousness. She eventually recovered enough to let her hands do some exploring, her still slippery fingers kneading his strongly muscled back and buttocks as he tentatively began to move within her. Each of his tender thrusts sent electricity through her as every area where their bodies came into contact dampened with a slight sheen of perspiration that made their movements even more fluent. Soon the lovers were completely lost in a sumptuous world of rose oil and adoring touches, where vows of endless devotion and pledges of eternal love were communicated by fingers venerating flesh, as her glistening body zealously devoured the unremitting torrents of his precious seed.

Max is a farmer, Liz a developer. What happens when their visions of the American Dream collide? ‘American Dream’

[ edited 3 time(s), last at 5-Sep-2002 6:48:28 AM ]
posted on 11-Sep-2002 12:23:59 AM by SansuCry
There is no update to my story today.

Instead I have included a link to a page listing the names of the victims of September 11th. Each victim has a profile page where you may leave a message for the family, and unfortuantely some victims (the ones whose names are not bolded) have no messages yet recorded for them.

All I ask is that you take a few minutes to read the list of all the talented people we lost on that tragic day and post a brief note for the family of one of the victims with no messages.

Let’s show them that we will always remember.

posted on 13-Sep-2002 10:32:05 PM by SansuCry
Just wanted to let you know I am working on the next part, but it is taking a little while...

So my question is this:

I have some specific things that I'm going to include in upcoming chapters, but beyond that I would like your input as I develop a more concrete outline.

What do you want to see in future chapters?

Ex. Short term things like: address Carrie's suicide, the confrontation with the parents, the effects of Max's rape, Taffy's question on exactly how Max ended up on Earth and how he was created (sorry, Taffy, you'll just have to wait for the answer on that one) etc.


Long term things like: Max going to school, getting married, having kids, etc.

Give specifics if possible. It doesn't necessarily mean I'll use every suggestion, but I'd like to know what you want to see.

Thanks a million!

posted on 15-Sep-2002 12:41:49 PM by SansuCry
Blanca originally wrote:
Hope I don't get flamed for this, but here goes.

Honestly, what I'd really like to see for this particular fic is... a conclusion.

No flame here...

…just a sincere thank you for putting into words what I’ve been struggling with for a while.

So here’s the bad news/good news:

When I first started writing this story sixteen months ago (way before I knew how long it would end up being!) I had originally planned to end it soon after the final confrontation with Jake and the revelation of Max’s heritage, but meanwhile other things got added in that I don’t want to leave as CHADs but need more time to be dealt with than just a few short paragraphs after the climax.

Still I don't feel that the tone of the future chapters fit with the original premise of the story, which to me was Max learning to be human and coming to terms with who/what he was and finally allowing himself to accept Liz’s love. From here on out it is now Max and Liz against the world, so to speak, and I believe that should be an entirely different story.

So I’ve come to a decision.

I still have more that I think belongs with this story, and I will write those chapters here, but most of it will skip days and weeks at a time instead of each day taking up a chapter or more. I think that kind of detail was necessary up until now when Max was learning things so quickly that one day marked a lot of progress, but now it would just slow the story down. (Sort of like a baby develops more in the first year of his life than any other times, so one day is more siginficant than in his later years.) After some deliberation I have figured out how I want this story to conclude, and I think once you read it you will agree that it is a good ending point. I can’t say how many more chapters that will be for certain, so I guess you’ll just have to bear with me on that.

The story of Max and Liz against the world, along with some other things I have up my sleeve, will be the sequel which is tentatively named Child of Fear. All of the long-term things and many of the short-term ones that you want to see for our Dreamer couple will be recounted there.

In the meatime I just want to thank every one of you who has taken the time to leave me feedback on this story. Writing this has been my therapy, and these characters have become members of my family. When I finally do stop writing them they, and you, will always have a special place in my heart.


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 15-Sep-2002 12:44:25 PM ]
posted on 24-Sep-2002 11:07:14 PM by SansuCry
Banner by BordersInsanity

Sorry for the long wait! Real life has been killing me lately. Thanks for all the bumps and feedback. It really inspires me.

MamaDee--Hubby still can't work the kinks out of that cloning machine, so I'm thinking of working on a suspended animation spell instead. That way I can write, get everything else done, AND keep my babies little forever!

pookie--I'm still going to post the rest of this before I start the sequel. It will basically just be a continuation, but with a different storyline.

Chapter 77 (NC-17)


A 34-year-old Kewanee woman and her five children were killed in a fire that swept through their trailer at the King’s Court mobile home park on the city’s east side Saturday morning. Amanda Scott and her children, James, age 6, Gerald, age 8, Christine, age 10, and 12-year-old twins Tammy and Tina were all pronounced dead at the scene of the swiftly moving fire, which happened while the children were supposed to be under the supervision of their 15-year-old sister, Sharon. The girl, an honor student at James Atherton Memorial High School, told fire officials that her mother went to sleep around 10 a.m., two hours after arriving home from working the midnight shift at Sorrensen Parts Distributors. An hour later Sharon left the children in the care of the twins for about fifteen minutes while she walked to a local convenience store, planning to purchase ice cream to accompany a cake she had made for her mother’s upcoming birthday. It is believed that one of the younger children may have started the fire while attempting to light the candles on the cake, and although the official cause has yet to be determined it appears that the age and condition of the trailer played a large part in the rapid progression of the blaze.

Funeral arrangements for the family are being handled by Casperson’s Funeral Home while efforts are being made to locate the children’s father, who has been estranged from the family for several years. A fund has been established at First National Bank to help pay for burial costs.

Hey Max—

Well, I guess it’s time to go home. I don’t want to be late for my mom’s birthday, you know. Besides, I didn’t realize how much I missed my brothers and sisters until I got jealous watching you play with those two boys the other day. I guess it’s because they’ve always reminded me of Jimmy and Gerry.

I hate to ask you to do this, but you’re the only friend I have so I sort of don’t have a choice. In the envelope on the table is all the money I’ve managed to save up over the past three years. Would you please use it to pay for some nice grave markers for my family. I’ve written down all the cemetery information and put it with the money. Good-bye, my friend.

Sharon aka Carrie

“You couldn’t have saved her.”

“If I had just been there sooner I could have.”

Setting the papers down next to her on the bed Liz wrapped her arms around Max and pulled his back flush against her chest, both lovers needing the emotional strength that physical contact brought them. Things had gone so terribly wrong the past week that there were a seemingly endless number of issues for them to discuss, so they had agreed to just curl up together and let their hearts direct the conversation. By silent agreement Carrie’s suicide had been chosen as the starting point.

“Maybe physically, but…she’d been planning this for a long time, Max, probably since the day they died.” She gathered her thoughts with a sigh, tilting her head back until it rested against the wooden headboard, her freshly washed hair sending a light chill over her bare shoulders. “I don’t have to tell you that guilt can be a heavy burden,” she spoke to the ceiling. “Even if you had been able to save her, she more than likely would have tried killing herself again.” After a few minutes of pensive silence she added, “I just regret that I hadn’t been able to apologize to her. No matter how jealous I was she didn’t deserve the mean things I said.”

Max didn’t reply, but Liz could feel his turmoil slowly simmering under the surface of his calm exterior. Did he blame her for Carrie’s death? Did he think her spiteful words had pushed his friend over the edge? “What are you thinking?” she asked cautiously.

“In my head I know you are correct, but…it still hurts. I’m going to miss her.” He brought her hand to his mouth and pressed a loving kiss into her palm.

“What else?” she pressed, knowing there was more he wanted to say.

His shoulders slumped and in a tormented voice he whispered, “I knew how jealous you were of her and I used that against you. If you hadn’t talked to Juanita then my plan would have worked. You never would have known that I didn’t I betrayed you.”

She moved her head all the way forward to gently kiss the nape of his neck, “That’s not true, my love. As soon as I settled down enough to start thinking logically, I knew right away that something wasn’t right about your story.”

“Is that why you came back here in the middle of the night?” he questioned as he continued to rub her hand against his cheek, her smooth skin feeling like satin against his stubbled face.

“How did you know I came back?” Recalling the light shining from the upstairs window she asked, “Were you watching me from Carrie’s room?”

“I knew Jake was in Roswell, so I wasn’t going to let you out of my sight for a minute. I followed you home to the Crashdown and watched your room from the alley,” he said with a slight laugh as he realized the irony of where he had ended up that night. “When you left home I followed you back here.”

She tightened her arms around him in a silent gesture of gratitude and sorrow.

“How did you know that I wasn’t telling you the whole truth?” he asked quietly.

“The pictures,” she said as she nuzzled the back of his neck. “If you really had wanted to be with Carrie, you wouldn’t have bothered taking the picture frame with you.”

“Is that why you went back for it at the old man’s house?” he asked with a despondent sigh.

She nodded her forehead against his shoulder. “Not one of my better ideas, I know.”

He wryly said, “I won’t argue with you there.”

Liz continued to press tender kisses on his neck and upper back, willing him to feel her regret over the fatal situation her rash action had inadvertently placed them in.

In a voice teetering on the edge of crying Max pleaded, “Now do you see why I had to push you away? After seeing Carrie’s…Sharon’s eyes with no life in them…I just couldn’t imagine you…”

Her own paralyzing anguish at seeing her mate’s deadened stare swelled and joined the sorrowful memory of his friend to quickly overtake their connection. Just when she thought she couldn’t survive the grief another second his lips sought out hers, his hands tangling in her hair as the full force of his love for her disseminated the immense pain. They desperately clung to each other as she passionately returned his adoration, the agony of losing him still too fresh a memory for her to endure alone.

As they continued to exchange devout kisses the couple inched down and shifted on the bed until she was able to feel every inch of his vibrantly warm flesh, needing to confirm for herself once again that he was very much alive. “Please,” she wantonly begged as she fought to stave off the sobs that were causing her entire body to tremble. Max moved between her widespread legs without hesitation and entered her to the hilt in one swift movement. He began savagely thrusting into her as she wrapped her legs around his waist and sank her nails into his back, the feel of him buried deep inside her more essential than her next breath of air. Throaty moans and animalistic grunts filled the room as they mated with abandon, the primal act of copulation more a reflexive affirmation of life than a conscious demonstration of their unshakable affection for one another. Their release arrived quickly, seared lungs screaming out in both misery and ecstasy until Max feebly collapsed on top of her, resting his forehead in the valley between her breasts. The tension now drained from them, their spent bodies shook with tears of mourning.

Once he was capable of movement Max placed several loving kisses over her breasts and neck before moving to her side. Adjusting the pillows, he rested flat on the bed and pulled her into his embrace, the gesture providing as much comfort to him as it gave to her. Her own lips soothed his sweat-dampened skin over many languorous minutes before she quietly said, “You don’t have to tell me this if you don’t want to…”

“I promised, Beauty, no more hiding things. What do you want to know?” he asked with concern.

She turned so she could look into his eyes. Cradling his cheek in her hand, she said, “This doesn’t really have to do with hiding anything. This just may be something too personal for you to share, so if you don’t want to I won’t be upset, all right?”

He gave her a worried nod.

She hesitantly asked, “When you tried to heal Car…Sharon and you connected with her, what did you see?”

He looked at her sorrowfully. “I only saw blackness. By the time I found her she had been dead too long. There was nothing left of her.”

She tenderly rubbed her thumb across his mouth and gently pressed her lips to his chest. The image he had originally used to deceive her flashed in her mind again, and suddenly her eyes widened in fear. “Max, was Juanita in the room with you when you tried to heal Carrie?”

Max frowned in concentration as he attempted to recall the events of that morning. “She could have been. I’m not sure.”

“Think, Max. It’s very important,” she said as she sat up.

“I don’t remember,” he said as he shook his head. “I went to Carrie’s room and knocked. When she didn’t answer I assumed she had already left for Illinois and I had just missed her. It wasn’t until I went back to clean her room that I found her.” His eye stung as a new wave of wetness trickled from them. Liz altered her position on the bed and guided him into her consoling arms. When he resumed his narration, his voice wavered with the emotions she could feel pulsing through him. “She was in the middle of the bed and at first I thought she was just sleeping, but as soon as I touched her.…..she was so cold. When I couldn’t wake her up I checked her over for any blood or signs of what might be wrong with her. I finally tore open her shirt to feel her heart, and I couldn’t sense it at all. Then I tried to connect with her and there was nothing. That’s when I knew she was dead and I couldn’t do anything to bring her back. The next thing I remember is Juanita pulling me away from her so that the ambulance people could get to her.”

“So you didn’t even try to use your healing powers?” Liz asked with baited breath.

“No,” Max answered quietly, and by the tone of his voice she could tell he regretted that he hadn’t tried harder.

She let out a cheerless sigh of relief. If he had not even attempted to heal his friend, there would be no silver handprint for the authorities to question. It also meant he had not revealed his otherworldly status to Juanita. Liz knew that he had simply acted on impulse, just as he had taken the chance and healed her in the Crashdown’s alley all those months ago. However, now that he was becoming a member of society, she had to make him understand that he could no longer act first and worry about the consequences later. His life may just depend on it. “Max, you know I love you and I am grateful beyond words that you saved my life, but from now on you have to be careful about how you use your healing power. There are people out there who may not be as accepting of your help as I was…”

“I shouldn’t try to heal people?” he asked with a confused expression.

Liz sighed in frustration. She had directly benefited from his gift, so to tell him that he couldn’t use it on others seemed selfish. “This didn’t really matter before because you’ve always avoided people, but now that you’ve become involved with the world around you, there are going to be more and more times when you could use your power to help others. Unfortunately, there are some people who don’t understand that you would never do anything to hurt them. They’d be afraid of you, and they might end up telling the wrong people about you. You can never be sure who those people might be, so you can’t take the chance of exposing yourself.”

His demeanor indicated that he still didn’t understand what she was trying to tell him. Finally she explained it in a way he would absolutely comprehend. Bluntly she stated, “Max, if you heal the wrong person, you will be taken away from me. The government has people, alien hunters, who would kidnap you and do mean, cruel things to you—things even worse than what Jake did. We’d never see each other again.”

“No,” he said as he shook his head, horrified at the thought of never seeing his mate again. He knew he would not be able to survive that, so he solemnly pledged, “I will not try to heal anyone else. I won’t risk being without you anymore.”

Liz hated asking such a thing of Max. He was so gentle and loving that it seemed a dreadful waste for him to not be able to use such a wonderful gift, all because of other people’s bigotry. Still, she had sworn to protect him, and she would use any means necessary to do so. She had already proven that. Hoping to reassure him she advised, “Max, you aren’t alone in this. Michael and Isabelle have always needed to be cautious as well. I think it might do you some good to open up to them.” As an afterthought she added, “I guess that goes for me, too, now.”

Max’s eyes widened at her words. How could he have been so foolish as to think that their lives could ever be normal? He may no longer be a threat to Liz as Zan, but she now needed to worry about the danger posed by…what had she called them…alien hunters? How would he ever live with himself knowing that she could be tortured simply for daring to love him? “Beauty, I am sorry for transferring my…”

He was quickly cut off by her lips covering his as waves of pure love flowed into him. She continued to tenderly mate her mouth to his until she was satisfied he would cease with his apology. To be certain, she implored, “Max, I don’t ever want you to regret changing me. I am literally the luckiest woman on Earth to have such a unique bond with you. I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

He gave her a grateful kiss as he fingered her silken hair in a soothing manner. “Thank you, my Beauty,” he finally whispered.

She firmly took his face in her hand. “I know it is going to take some time before all your doubts and insecurities are gone, but will you promise me that you’ll always share them with me so we can work through them together?”

Placing his hand over hers and entwining their fingers he was resolute in his reply. “Yes, my mate.”

“I really hope you’ll consider opening up to Michael and Isabelle…” she said as she slid their hands down his face and rested them on her chest.

“I’m not sure they’ll accept me, Liz,” he said sullenly. “The things written in those journals were implanted as memories in their minds, too. If they begin to recall anything about the Zan then they aren’t going to want to be near me.”

“They were already beginning to remember. As a matter of fact they tried to dissuade me from looking for you because they felt that you were dangerous. But they know logically that you aren’t, especially now that you aren’t Zan anymore.” When Max looked at her skeptically she added, “Max, no matter what their instincts tell them, Michael and Isabelle trust my judgment. They are capable of thinking for themselves and drawing their own conclusions as well. If Michael truly believed you were a danger, I don’t think he would have risked his own life to heal you.”

Max’s throat tightened automatically. “He risked his life?”

She softly nodded as a tear threatened to spill down her cheek. “The bullet did a lot of damage. He had to use so much of his energy to heal you that it almost killed him. Isabelle said it will take a couple of days of rest before he regains his full strength.”

Max shook his head in awe. “I really don’t remember getting shot, so I guess I didn’t realize how bad it was…”

“It was pretty bad,” Liz confirmed as her cheeks were dampened once again. She silently wondered whether she would ever again be able to go more than a few minutes without having to cry. At least these tears were tempered by the fact that her mate was still here with her. “What do you remember?” she asked hesitantly.

He closed his eyes to concentrate on his memories. “Jake was holding you. He had a gun to your head. You told me to trust you, to not believe anything you said until he was dead. He made…he made you get on the ground…” he choked out.

“Shh, I’m okay now. He didn’t hurt me,” she said soothingly. She brought his hand to her face and gave it a loving brush of her lips before prompting, “Do you remember anything else?”

“I remember hearing your voice but not being able to see you, like I was lost somewhere. Then I couldn’t hear or feel you at all anymore. I just knew…I was dead.”

“You don’t remember Jake talking about what happened when he kidnapped you?” she inquired. Could it be possible that Max didn’t remember the cruel man’s awful revelation? Maybe his mind had blocked it out automatically as a defensive measure…like selective amnesia. She had heard of it happening before.

“No,” he said with a slight shake of his head.

Liz couldn’t stop the chill that ran through her. She could tell by the lack of apprehension in his emotions that he was telling the truth. He really did not remember what Jake had disclosed yesterday, and for a moment she wondered whether he could even recall the rape happening in the first place. She had a fleeting hope that perhaps Jake had made the whole thing up, but then the look of shame and humiliation in Max’s eyes pierced her memory and she knew without a doubt that he had been violated. She couldn’t possibly broach this subject with him now, though. How could she talk to him about something he might not even remember? She needed time. Time to find out from a professional how to help him. Time to see whether he would regain his memories.

Unfortunately Max picked up on her concerns before she could avert his attention to another topic. “Beauty, what happened out there? What did Jake say?”

She didn’t see any other choice but to put him off for now. “Max, we still have a lot to discuss, including everything that happened at the old man’s house, but if I don’t get home pretty soon I’m sure my parents are going to call the police. I’ve been gone since four o’clock yesterday morning—almost thirty-six hours.”

He pressed his body into her side and buried his head in her chest. He futilely requested, “Please, Beauty, don’t leave me. I don’t want to be alone.”

“You know that if I had a choice I would stay here forever,” she replied wistfully. “but we’re going to have to face the world sooner or later.”

As much as he hated to admit it he knew she was right. Still, a little while longer wouldn’t make that much of a difference, would it? He lovingly caressed her stomach with the palm of his hand as he placed gentle kisses around the hills of her breasts. Moving up to her mouth he asked sweetly, “Can you make it later? I want to make love to you properly this time.”

Her breath instantly caught in her throat as his gentle kisses became more insistent ones. How could she refuse such an arousing request? Besides, she had no idea what fate awaited her at home. It may be a few days before she got to see him again, let alone make love with him. She tenderly coaxed him to resume the position between her legs he had taken a short time earlier and gave him a devilish smile. “Convince me to stay,” she teased.

He quickly slid his hand under her back and held her to him as he inched up enough to kiss the top of her head. Her own hand instinctively threaded into his thick dark hair. She closed her eyes to relish the alluring sound of his deep voice as he spoke, “I love how soft your hair feels. All I have to do is run my fingers through it and I feel a calmness settle over me that I’ve never found anywhere else. I can’t wait to watch as you brush out our daughter’s hair while it shines in the morning sunlight because I know it will be as silky and beautiful as your own.”

He reverently ran a finger down the side of her face. “This is what I did the first time I touched you. I was completely terrified to be that close to another person, but I was so drawn to you that I simply had to know the feel of your skin.” Trailing his lips over the imaginary path his finger had created he whispered, “I want to begin and end each day for the rest of our lives kissing you this way to remember that first precious touch of you.”

He moved to her mouth and gently nipped at her lips several times, then languidly soothed them with his tongue. “I love this mouth because of all the wonderful encouraging words that have passed through these lips. One touch of their sweetness against my skin fills me with such desire that I have no choice but to make love with you.” Tracing the outline of their kiss-swollen fullness with his finger he said with adoration, “I can’t wait to see this mouth smiling down at our baby girl as you sing her to sleep.” With a sexy glint in his eyes he circled her mouth with his tongue. “I want you to spread that cake frosting over more than just my mouth and then use these lips to lick off every last bit of it.”

He tenderly grazed the column of her throat as he said in a husky voice, “I love hearing the moans that come straight from here when I’m pleasuring you. To know that I am the only man who will ever have the privilege to make you feel that way excites me more than you could ever know.” Nuzzling the side of her neck he whispered, “I can only imagine how it will feel to see our little girl’s head snuggled against here as she drifts off to sleep.”

Reaching her chest, his tongue quickly teased each tip of her soft mounds into hardened peaks. “I will never tire of having your luscious breasts in my mouth,” he venerated, tenderly suckling her left nipple to emphasize his point. “I guess someday I’ll have to learn how to share them, though.”

Liz’s eyes opened in shock. She couldn’t have heard him correctly. Did he just tell her he was going to share her? Raising her head she asked in astonishment, “What did you just say?”

He had wanted to determine whether his words were still penetrating the increasingly arousing haze thickening their connection. Obviously she had been listening. Giving her an amused grin he explained, “Someday when you have our baby and your breasts are filled with milk I will have to share them so that you can nourish her. That is known as breastfeeding, right?”

She let out a sigh of relief, then stared at him in bewilderment. “How did you learn about breastfeeding?” she asked with surprise.

“The Oprah Winfrey Show. Ten things you can do to raise a healthy child. They said you should breastfeed your baby for the first year,” he said matter-of-factly.

She let out a tingling laugh, “You never cease to amaze me, Max. Between Oprah and Judge Judy you sure are getting one strange education.”

He feathered her belly with light kisses then nuzzled the soft skin there as he revered, “Yes, but you’ve taught me the most important lesson of all, my Beauty.”

“What would that be?” she barely managed to whisper out. He was implementing the technique she had used to beckon his soul home to her, and his worshipping words were blending with his practiced hands and mouth to stir a feverish longing deep within her. He was doing an impeccable job of convincing her to stay.

“You have shown me how to love and how to be loved in return. There is nothing more important than that.”

“Oh, Max,” she softly moaned as her fingers tightened in his hair. “We learned that together. I only imagined what being in love with someone would be like. I had no idea it could be this wonderful until I met you.”

Hearing her touching declaration made Max want to immediately end his amorous seduction and complete his possession of her, yet her same words are what restrained him from doing just that. After all her effort to bring him back to her by exposing her most intimate visions of a future with him, he needed to demonstrate his endless devotion to her in every way possible. His love for her stretched way beyond the physical aspect of their relationship, and for at least the next several minutes it was much more important for him to continue revealing his own dreams of their future together than to end his narrative prematurely for the sole purpose of hastening their union. He would be joined with her soon enough and until then, his senses would have plenty of her to savor.

“I remember every night I have spent sleeping with my hand on this smooth skin,” he murmured as he continued kissing and nuzzling her abdomen. “I look forward to a lifetime of feeling this warmth under my hand…when we’re laying together in the sun after having a picnic…when our baby is growing inside you…when I come home from my job and kiss you hello while you’re carrying our daughter around on your hip…when I shower with you every morning.”

Liz whimpered at the loss of his weight on her as he moved to kneel between her legs. He had slowly and expertly brought her body to the point of simmering, but just when she anticipated that he would relieve her ache with his skillful mouth and adept fingers he had surprised her by pulling away instead. Her body quivered at the sudden chill on her skin.

“I love all the lengths you have traveled for me and with me,” he said as he lifted her leg and cradled it in his arm. “I’m not just talking about the distances these legs have carried you,” he quietly said as he trailed opened-mouthed kisses over her ankle and calf, rubbing his stubbled cheek into her yielding flesh. His voice began to tremble with emotion as he elaborated, “You came to me in my darkest hour, when I was certain I would spend the rest of eternity alone in nothingness, and gave me the incentive and the strength to want to live again.” His lips moved to her knee. “Michael may have saved my body, but you brought me back to life.” He lowered her leg back to the bed and kissed his way up her thigh, his mouth finally coming to rest on her hip.

His lips timidly caressed the blackened skin around her commitment symbol before settling on the rose in the center. They had both carefully avoided the subject of its change in color and the significance of that transformation, each of them fearful to discover whether their special bond had been so drastically altered as well. They had easily determined that they could still sense the other’s emotions, but by some unmentioned agreement neither of them had attempted to silently speak to the other. By the time Liz left to go home they would need to learn the answer, but in their minds and hearts they would always be committed mates, no matter what any forthcoming experimentation may reveal about their connection.

Having completed all but his final veneration, Max gradually allowed his mouth and fingers to wander over her dark curls, forging a path to the place where her heat and desire merged to produce the sweetest of elixirs. His first tastes were tentative, as if he wondered whether he still had the right to drink her inebriating nectar. It was only after she moaned his name in encouragement that he relaxed his guard and settled between her legs to consume all that she had to offer.

Liz had thought she would go insane with lust if he made her wait even a second longer to have his lips on hers. She could feel that he was trying to hold back, yet every light touch of his tongue suffused her with his desperate need to devour the musky evidence of the arousal he wrought in her. She was relieved when he only required a minuscule amount of persuasion to continue, every nerve in her body pulsing with such desire that she could do scarcely more than moan his name.

Max completely lost himself in the feel and taste of his mate, his hands roaming and kneading her supple skin as he attempted to quench his eternal thirst for her. Thighs…buttocks…stomach…breasts, the gentleness of his caresses were a glaring contradiction to the eagerness with which he feasted on her abundant fluids. He struggled to keep his eyes open against the intense ache of longing, not wanting to miss one flick of her tongue against parted lips or a single twitch of tightly shut eyelids as her face revealed her ecstasy. Only a persistent tugging by the small fingers threaded through his hair made him cease his ministrations, the ebony pupils of her half-lidded eyes exposing the severity of her need for him.

She had nearly melted with the heat he generated as he lovingly stoked her body, her focus torn between the burning of her skin under his loving hands and the searing of her core beneath his fervent mouth. He was so entrenched in his oral offensive that she had almost torn his hair out to make him aware of her desire to have more than just his tongue inside of her. He gave her a seductive grin as he licked her remaining juices from his lips, and with the last sweep of his tongue across her center she heard his faint voice in her head.

‘I am going to spend the rest of my days thanking you for bringing me back to life.’

She refused to let go of the tears that had sprung up in the corners of her eyes. Even though they were joyous tears, she wanted this moment to remain unspoiled, needing to see his passionate face as he made love to her. ‘I am going to spend the rest of my days welcoming you home.’

He crawled up the bed until he was touching her, chest to breast, his lips teasing hers into submission while his manhood demanded the same entrance as his tongue. ‘I will honor this life you have given me by making the best possible use of it.’

She readily opened for him. ‘I will be there every step of the way to give you all the love and support you need.’

He leisurely slid into her. ‘I will share my life with you as your husband.’

She languidly took all of his length. ‘I will cherish each moment I spend as your wife.’

He almost completely withdrew before tranquilly burying himself in her heat again, his mouth mimicking each of his body’s actions as his tender movements revealed the depth of his devotion to her. ‘I will celebrate my life by making love with you every chance I get.’

Her hands gripped his biceps as they both struggled to maintain the last vestige of control. ‘Each time we do, my life will become your life.’

‘And mine, yours.’ Of their own volition his hips thrust into her faster and deeper. ‘I love you, my mate.’

Starving for release, her own hips rose to meet his. ‘I love you, my mate.’

His eyes held hers in a blissful stare until they silently spoke the words they had both been waiting for.

‘I give you my life.’

With that simple affirmation, two lovers became one.

After Max had fallen into a deep slumber, his body still weak from death yet alive with the contentment of a satiated mate, Liz crept from the bed and headed home to face the music.

If she had known how long it would be before they made love again, she never would have left him.

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 24-Sep-2002 11:09:07 PM ]
posted on 5-Oct-2002 6:01:33 PM by SansuCry
Banner by BordersInsanity

Chapter 78

“Where in God’s name have you been?” a maternal voice asked incredulously as Liz walked through the front door of the Crashdown. She had decided that going into the restaurant would be better than coming in through the back since her parents obviously wouldn’t try to kill her in front of a group of customers. Then again…

“Hi, mom,” she said weakly as she watched her mother hang up the phone.

“ ‘Hi, mom’? You disappear in the middle of the night and are gone for a day and a half and all you can say is ‘Hi, mom’? I was just about to call the sheriff to file a missing persons report!” Nancy snapped.

“Didn’t you get my message?” Liz questioned sheepishly.

“Don’t you dare be smart with me, young lady! You march your behind upstairs right this minute and wait for me in the living room,” her mother said through gritted teeth as she pointed to the back of the restaurant. “And don’t even think about going near your balcony. You father has nailed the window shut!”

Liz wanted to protest being treated like a prisoner, but she thought better of it. After all, she had given her mother every reason to act the part of an overprotective parent. She let out an exasperated sigh as she walked through the swinging door and trudged up the stairs. Noticing that her dad wasn’t in the apartment, she dashed to her room and searched her backpack for her birth control pills. She tossed aside the old pack, the one remaining pill being the last of seven “duds”, its only purpose to keep her in the habit of taking a pill a day. Fumbling for the new package she popped out the first pill from its protective foil. She was already several hours late in taking it, so she quickly crossed the floor to her bathroom to grab a glass of water as she slid the small tablet onto the tip of her tongue. Rinsing it down, she hurried back to the living room just as she heard two sets of footsteps ascending the stairs. She plopped onto the couch, and too late she noticed several different sheets of paper spread out over the coffee table, each one of them a piece of incriminating evidence.

Her parents sat down on the loveseat, her mom holding her dad’s hand in such a restraining manner that it was obvious he was even more upset than she was over Liz’s disappearing act.

“Liz, I think your dad and I have been very….lenient up until now as far as not interfering with your activities, but apparently we’ve been a little too lax …”

“Mom…” Liz began as she leaned forward.

“NO! You are going to keep your mouth shut and listen to what we have to say,” Nancy commanded as her fingers tightened around her husband’s. Liz’s shoulders slouched in defeat. Why prolong the inevitable? Besides, she could tell that her mother’s lecture would end up being much more palatable than anything her dad might have to say to her. She really wished Max would wake up so that she could communicate with him. It would make this whole thing so much easier to handle.

“Since the middle of summer your father and I have both noticed a drastic change in your behavior, and we had both hoped that you were just going through a phase. First you were all giddy and happy for a few weeks, and then you started to look like you weren’t getting enough sleep. Just when we didn’t think you could look any worse, school starts and you begin walking around like a zombie. We were concerned enough that we were this close to canceling our honeymoon trip in November. While we were in New York we decided to take you to a doctor as soon as we returned home, but we got back and you finally looked like yourself again, so we thought everything was all right.”

“Then you started sneaking out at night...there were showers at all sorts of odd hours…all the time you spent on this school project of yours that none of your teachers seem to know anything about…” Nancy reached for one of the pieces of paper on the table. “Your first semester grades are Bs and Cs, when you’ve been doing nothing but straight A work for years.” Another piece of paper. “Over the past couple of months you have withdrawn over twelve hundred dollars from your savings account.” A third piece of paper. “When you father and I did the restaurant’s inventory a few days ago, we discovered quite a bit of missing food. We asked Jose whether he knew anything about it, and he informed us of all the late-night cravings you seemed to be having. Mrs. Nuebauer said she’s seen you hanging around that transient motel across from Walgreens…”

Panic began to well up inside of Liz’s chest. Had they found out about Max somehow? If they had, they obviously weren’t happy about it. How far would they go to keep her away from him?

“Liz, you know I have to ask you. Where have you been for the past day and a half, and whom were you with?”

Paralyzed with fear, Liz remained stoically silent.

“Do you have anything to say for yourself?” Jeff Parker suddenly bit out. “I had to sit here and listen to your mother cry her eyes out with worry, and you can’t show enough respect to even answer her questions?” When Liz just stared at him blankly as a million thoughts flashed through her mind he yanked his hand from his wife’s grasp and jumped to his feet, towering over his daughter threateningly. “That’s it! We are packing your bags and getting you on a plane to Aunt Kathie’s tonight!”

Liz immediately found her voice as she stood up to face him. “You can’t do that! You cannot send me to Florida! I won’t go!”


Trying to stop things before they got out of control, Nancy held her hand up between two sets of glaring eyes. “Liz, please. We can’t go on like this. Aunt Kathie was able to get you a spot at The Pierce Clinic. It is one of the best adolescent drug treatment centers in the country…”

Liz’s glare immediate snapped away from her dad and focused on her mother with undeniable shock. Drugs! In the past six months she had experienced both the most frightening and most wonderful things imaginable. She’d been healed by an alien, fallen in love with him, lost her virginity to him, killed the man who had shot him, had even brought him back to life, and here her parents believed that all her strange behavior was due to a drug problem? She shook with the absurdity of it.

And then she burst out laughing

“Oh, good Lord. You’re high on something right now, aren’t you? What is it? Marijuana? Or is it that Ecstasy garbage?” her dad demanded.

She shook her head no until she could calm her body enough to speak, her feelings wavering from relief to panic the entire time. She finally managed to choke out a hoarse, “I'm sorry.”

“Sorry's not good enough. Where were you? Where have you been getting the drugs? It’s someone from that motel, isn’t it?” her mother asked insistently.

“No, mom. I swear to you,” Liz said with complete seriousness, “I’m not on drugs. Please, you just have to trust me.”

“Trust you? You disappear from home in the middle of the night, when you are already grounded, and you expect me to trust you. No, not until you give me a reason to. So tell me. If it’s not drugs, then exactly what has been going on with you?” her mother pleaded.

“I can’t,” was Liz’s reply. ‘I can’t tell you that I’m in love with an alien. I can’t tell you that I now possess an otherworldly power. I can’t tell you that I killed a man to protect the love of my life,’ she silently added.

“You damn well better…” he father threatened.

“Will you just stop trying to control me?” Liz challenged. It was a foolish thing to say, but with each passing minute she felt her future with Max slipping away as the threat of being sent away loomed over her head.

“We are trying to keep you safe! If we need to control you...” Nancy trailed off. In a voice filled with hurt she asked, “When have we even tried to control you?”

With more calmness than she felt Liz explained, “You've never had to. I do every single thing you want, and you just think I'm always going to be that way. Well, I’m not. There are some things I just can’t tell you, and this is one of them. I promise that it’s nothing dangerous or illegal or bad, but I just can’t tell you…”

“Fine. Then you will live with your Aunt Kathie until you can tell us,” her dad fumed.

“Mom, please,” Liz pleaded, knowing that there would be no reasoning with her father. “I’m begging you. Don’t send me away. You have no idea what you’ll be doing if you make me leave Roswell.”

Nancy was torn between providing a united front with her husband and trying to reach out to her daughter. Something in Liz’s eyes made her believe that her only child was telling the truth. Still, she had a responsibility to protect the obstinate young lady from harm. “Liz, honey. You know that your father and I love you. We aren’t doing this to hurt you. We’re worried. Very worried. For the first time in our lives we know there is something wrong with our baby girl, something we can’t fix with just a Band-Aid and a peck on the cheek. Please, Liz, don’t shut us out. Let us help you.”

Liz stared down at her hands as she contemplated her mom’s words. She really did feel awful that she had made her parents so worried, but from here on out Max would always be her first priority. He had already told her on New Year’s Day that he wanted to meet her folks, and she had only refused then because she feared her folks would make her stay away from him after seeing how close the two had become. She really didn’t have anything to gain by keeping Max a secret if it resulted in her being sent halfway across the country.

The choice was already made. She would have to tell them about Max, even if she couldn’t let them know everything. These were her parents. They are the ones who had taught her to be compassionate in the first place, so certainly they would be able to understand her need to help Max all those months ago. But would they understand that he was now the most important person in her life? Eyes darting back and forth between those of the two people who had raised her she reluctantly said, “You had better sit down. This is going to be a long story.”

Her parents exchanged concerned glances at their daughter’s sudden about face. They had asked her for the truth, but now that she was about to reveal it, were they really prepared for what she had to say? They both returned to their places on the loveseat, their clasped hands now lending each other the support they believed they would need to endure whatever Liz was about to tell them.

Liz hesitantly sat back down, adjusting her legs underneath her as she went. She couldn’t prevent the crimson flush of her face as she remembered making love with Max in the exact spot she was now occupying. So there were certain things her parents didn’t need to know just yet…

“Dad, do you remember when I told you I thought an animal was getting into the garbage cans? It was around the fourth of July?”

Her dad frowned as he answered, “Yes, but what does this have to do with…”

“Please, dad,” Liz interrupted as she tried to not tremble. “This is hard enough to talk about as it is…just let me get it out.”

“Fine. Yes, I remember you telling me about the animal in the garbage.”

“Well, it turns out it wasn’t an animal…it was a boy.”

“A boy?” her dad asked suspiciously.

“What do you mean it was a boy?” her mother questioned.

“I mean…it wasn’t an animal going through the garbage. It was a boy…a boy my age…looking for something to eat.”

Nancy’s free hand immediately went to her mouth. “Oh dear Lord. Why didn’t you tell us?”

“Well, at first I wasn’t certain it was really a person, so I wanted to wait until I was positive. Three weeks later I finally saw him, and…there was this look in his eyes...” Her heart ached as she recalled the fear that used to constantly cloud her mate’s beautiful features. Her lashes involuntarily fluttered shut as she detailed her first encounters with the man who had become the center of her universe. “He’d sneak into the alley very late at night to avoid being detected, and each time I saw him he was just so afraid that I knew if I told anyone about him, he wouldn’t come back.”

“Come back?” her dad asked in confusion. She couldn’t be implying that she had allowed this boy to continue rooting through the refuse to find sustenance.

Liz nodded. “I had started leaving food for him by the garbage cans every night, and then I would watch from my balcony to make sure he got it.”

“That explains the dark circles under your eyes and the missing inventory,” Nancy observed wryly. “But I still don’t understand why you didn’t tell us then. We could have gotten some help for this young man.”

“When I say Max was afraid of people, it doesn’t even begin to describe the depth of his fear,” Liz said in exasperation as she forced her eyes open for her mother to see the truth reflected there.

“Max?” her father asked skeptically. “You know his name, so obviously he wasn’t afraid of a pretty girl like you.”

Nancy shot him a silencing look. Her daughter was finally opening up, and she wasn’t about to let her husband’s comments interfere with that. She nodded at Liz to continue.

“I’d been leaving out food for almost a month when I got the bright idea to wait for Max in the alley. When he saw me sitting there he completely freaked out and ran away. I thought that was the last time I would ever see him.”

“Oh, honey,” Nancy said sympathetically as she noticed the pain the memories brought Liz. She wanted to go over and wrap her arms around her baby, but she sensed that Liz needed to distance herself for the moment by retaining the physical space between them.

The last thing Liz wanted to do was tell her parents anything about Jake. However, if she at least revealed that Max had saved her life then perhaps they would better comprehend the significance of her relationship with him. Cautiously choosing her words she continued, “Two weeks passed before he showed up again, and at just the right moment, thankfully, because he saved me from being attacked.”

“Attacked?” Nancy asked as her back stiffened with fear, her husband’s face reflecting the same emotion. “Someone attacked you and you didn’t tell us?” What else had her daughter been hiding these past few months?

Speaking only half of the truth, Liz explained. “I probably should have told you, but I didn’t get a good look at the guy. He took off after Max got him away from me, so there wouldn’t have been anything solid to report to the police. I was okay in the end, so I just wanted to forget it ever happened.”

Castigating herself for letting Liz suffer through such a terrible thing alone, Nancy could not resist moving to the couch to comfort her daughter now. Putting an arm around Liz’s shoulder she commented, “So I’m assuming that near attack is why you were so depressed after Labor Day?”

“In a way, yes,” Liz said sullenly. Steeling herself to discuss one of the worst times of her short life, she said quietly, “I didn’t really have time to think about what had happened to me because I was too worried about Max. After he saved me, he just vanished…..for two and a half months.” Tears swelled in her eyes as her voice caught in her throat. She wished she could tell them the entire truth, but even revealing the little bit that she would was proving to be very difficult. “I was so scared that something had happened to him…he risked his life to save mine, and I was so afraid I would never even get the chance to thank him…”

Putting the pieces together, her mom wasn’t sure whether she should thank this Max character for rescuing her baby or pound him into the ground for making Liz go crazy with the same kind of worry she had felt for her daughter. She accurately remarked, “But he did eventually come back, and you’ve been paying for him to stay at that transient motel since then, haven’t you?”

Liz could only nod.

Nancy’s arm tightened around Liz’s shoulder as Jeff demanded, “That’s where you’ve been sneaking off to in the middle of the night? To visit a boy you barely know in some trashy motel room that your college money is paying for?”

Liz bristled at the implied slander to Max’s character and the accusation that the Regent was a tawdry place. Even Carrie…Sharon had been nothing more than a despondent honor student who chose the worst possible way to deal with the guilt over her family’s death. “It isn’t like that at all,” she defended. “Max is…” What could she say? An alien? Her lover? Her mate? The other half of her soul? “…special.”

“Honey,” her mother wrapped her free hand around Liz’s arm, “boys like that seem special to every girl they are involved with…”

Liz yanked herself out of her mother’s grasp and stood up to pace the floor. “NO! You don’t know Max, so you can’t say that about him. He…” This was just too damn frustrating. If they didn’t think Max saving their only daughter’s life warranted any kind of special treatment, what did? Being as vague as possible she tried to explain why he meant so much to her. “He had no one. He’s been on his own for as long as he can remember, and apart from one lonely elderly man who is now deceased, I am the first person he has ever trusted. It’s only been the past few weeks that he has finally begun to open up and trust other people, too, and that is directly due to the people who live at that motel. I’ve met several of them myself, and they are anything but transients.”

“Liz, how do you know that Max isn’t a runaway?” her dad questioned. “You know his name, so he had to have come from somewhere. It isn’t like he just fell from the sky. He might have a family out there looking for him and even if he doesn’t, someone from social services should be taking care of him instead of a sixteen-year-old girl.”

Liz chastised herself for telling her parents about Max without thinking things completely through. She should have realized the kinds of questions they would be asking about him. She would have to tell them a lot more than she felt comfortable with if she expected to gain their understanding and support. “If he is a runaway, then I don’t want his family to find him. He still hasn’t told me a lot about his past, if he even remembers it, but I do know that he had to have suffered a lot of cruel treatment to be so afraid of people. The first time he ever even spoke was the night he saved me…to tell me his name was Max…which, it turns out, was really the name of that elderly man. Wherever he came from, they didn’t even care enough about him to give him a name. You can’t possibly send him back to that.”

“Liz, that isn’t for us or you to decide. Social service people are trained to handle these kinds of situations. They can judge what would be best for Max, and get him the counseling he needs to deal with whatever happened to him in his past,” her mother rationally explained.

“No,” Liz said adamantly. “Max trusts me. I promised him that I would protect him and keep him safe, and I plan to do just that. I’ve heard the stories. Social services could end up sending him to someplace even worse than where he came from, and I refuse to take that kind of chance with his life. Max needs me, and I need him. I will not let him be taken away from me.”

Jeff and Nancy exchanged a knowing look. They both understood exactly what Liz was saying, even though she hadn’t come right out and said it. If they contacted social services, Max would definitely become a runaway…and Liz would be gone right along with him.

Nancy knew she had to find at least a temporary solution. This young man who had saved her child’s life must truly be special to make her usually calm, rational daughter suddenly be so aggressively protective that she was prepared to run away with him if it meant keeping him safe from some perceived threat. Did he really deserve that kind of devotion? There was no doubt in Nancy’s mind that she knew enough about teen-aged boys to be able to determine whether this one had genuine feelings for Liz or was simply toying with her daughter’s emotions to garner financial support and other…favors. She’d be able to see it in his eyes. “If this Max is so important to you, then at least let us meet him and get to know him.”

Liz knew she had been backed into a corner. Her parents now knew enough about her mate that they could have him taken away from her forever if they so desired. She only hoped they would see how much he meant to her. Addressing her mom she requested, “Will you promise me that you won’t call social services?”

Nancy looked to Jeff for his opinion. She knew that if he had his way, Liz would be locked in her bedroom until she was well into her thirties, safely sheltering him from the reality of his baby girl becoming a woman. Instead he reluctantly acknowledged his acquiescence with a curt nod. Turning to her daughter, she laid down the conditions of their burgeoning agreement. “Liz, I think it goes without saying that we aren’t very happy about how you handled this entire situation, especially the fact that you’ve told us quite a few lies these past couple of months. I know you probably think that you were doing the right thing, but that still doesn’t excuse your behavior. Obviously we are going to have to give you some type of punishment for it, but I think there are more important issues for us to deal with at the moment. For now, we promise that we won’t contact social services. However, there will be no more sneaking out at night, no more visits alone with Max, either in his motel room or anywhere else, no more skipping school, no more pushing your work shifts onto Agnes, and most important, no more lies. Do we have an understanding?”

Liz gave her mom a gratefully satisfied smile to indicate her agreement.

“Good,” Nancy said with a deep breath. Holding up Liz’s report card she continued, “I know you don’t have classes due to the Martin Luther King holiday, but I’m sure you can find some studying to catch up on. Then I suggest you get a good night’s sleep because after the breakfast rush tomorrow morning, you are going to take us to meet this Max of yours.”

Max is a farmer, Liz a developer. What happens when their visions of the American Dream collide? American Dream

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 14-Oct-2002 2:37:38 AM ]
posted on 14-Oct-2002 1:34:20 AM by SansuCry
You know, Dee, that you shouldn't make me bust up laughing at one in the morning....

I'm working on the next part. I promise. But you know how that real life stuff works...baked two things for the kid's school fundraiser Wednesday...attended said fundraiser Thursday...half-day of school Friday (who can concentrate with a six yr old around?)...took kid to swim team practice and a birthday party Saturday...and made a pot of BBQ...and two cakes for my mom's birthday party school tomorrow 'cuz some guy landed on Plymouth Rock (so of course my six yr old will be home on the ONLY day off hubby will have all week) get the jist of it.

Writing would be much easier if I didn't need to sleep, but alas, driving the minivan in a sleep-deprived state is just not a good idea.

posted on 23-Oct-2002 12:12:43 AM by SansuCry
Banner by Bordersinsanity

Celebrating my 800th post!!

Yes, can you believe it? I am actually posting a new part. You know the drill...real life...blahblahblah. And since my family is sick of hearing about it, I'll tell you guys that my 6 yr old swam in her first meet over the weekend. She swam the 25yd freestyle in 33 seconds, in front of hundreds of people. I would have been so scared to death myself that I would have drowned, so I'm quite proud of her.

Anyway, let's meet the parents, shall we?

Chapter 79

Liz was certain she would throw up any second now.

She attempted to do as her mother had instructed, but there was simply no way for her to concentrate on studying any of her subjects with their crucial gathering just hours away. Instead she curled up on her bed and tried to work out a plan for what Max would tell her parents during this very important first encounter. As soon as he was awake she would explain to him what had happened, then stress to him how important it was to follow her directions to the letter. She would have him reiterate what little she had already narrated about his life, making sure to leave out any otherworldly references. As her parents questioned him further, she would help him decide how to answer each inquiry. If they worked together, they may just survive this critical meeting and somehow convince her parents to not contact social services.

She discovered too late that there was one major flaw with her plan.

She sensed the minute Max had awakened, the current of his emotions steadily growing the closer he got to reaching full consciousness. A short burst of fear as he noticed he was alone in the bed. Relief as he remembered that she had to leave to face her parents. Love and contentment as he felt her presence in his mind. Concern over her apparent upset. Then the same panic and worry she was beginning to feel rapidly settled over him as he came to realize what she herself had just ascertained.

Their verbal connection had not been restored. Max’s death had somehow affected their special bond so that they were unable to talk to each other. The beautiful words they had silently spoken to each other as they made love earlier must have only been possible because they were physically connected. Over and over she called out his name in her mind, desperately hoping for even the slightest hint of response. None came.

She had no way of telling Max that she and her parents were going to show up at his motel room door. She couldn’t let him know what she had already told them about his unusual circumstances. She would not be able to coach his responses to their inquisition unless they allowed her to sit by him, pressing her leg against his or holding his hand while trying to not reveal how intimate they truly were. Suddenly a difficult situation had become an impossible one.

Neither she nor Max had gotten much sleep after that. She tried as best she could to suppress her dread and fear, knowing that he was already anxious enough without her feelings being added into the mix. What made it worse for him was that he had no idea why she was so upset. She only hoped he would not aggravate things by trying to come to her in the middle of the night.

Fortunately he hadn’t, and now as she sat nursing her breakfast at a booth towards the back of the Crashdown, she was certain that the combination of her nervousness and Max’s growing fright would make her throw up any second. Both her parents had been distantly polite to her since she had emerged from her bedroom earlier, as though they were seeing her as someone completely different from the ideal daughter they had assumed her to be just a few short weeks ago. She couldn’t help but think that it was not a good sign.

Before Liz could ponder things further, her mother emerged from the back, a jacket draped over her arm as she checked her purse for some unknown object. Apparently satisfied that she had everything she needed she approached the booth where Liz was trying to keep from going insane. “Are you ready?” she asked, her eyes finally softening with the maternal love that had been absent earlier.

Liz looked towards the kitchen door. “Where’s dad?” she asked hesitantly.

“Well, we couldn’t very well leave the restaurant unsupervised, now could we?” Nancy said in a tone that was light-hearted yet firm. “Besides, I thought it might be better to go see your friend with only one of us parents first. I don’t want him to think we are ganging up on him.”

“Oh,” was the only sound Liz could manage to pass through her suddenly very dry mouth.

“Now if you want, I can stay here and your father can go…”

“NO! You’re fine,” Liz answered emphatically. “Just you is more than fine.” One parent, especially her mom, was decidedly better than two.

“All right, then. Shall we?” Nancy questioned as she stepped back to allow her daughter to exit the booth.

Liz nodded and stood up slowly, testing her shaky legs before letting go of the table and sliding her jacket on.

“We might as well walk,” her mother suggested as she put her own jacket on and headed out the front entrance of the restaurant.

Liz silently followed her like a reluctant puppy being scolded. Once outside the mid-January air instantly cooled the slight sheen of perspiration that covered her entire body, making the hair on her arms and legs immediately stand on end. Even with the morning sun’s warming rays she involuntarily shivered, knowing her chill had much less to do with the temperature than with the monumental step she was about take, based as it was on a decision she had been forced to make without the benefit of Max’s input. She could only hope she had made the right choice.

“I’m sure you know Dad was dead set against us going to see your Max without him accompanying us,” her mother chattered, “but I convinced him that we are both big girls and can manage by ourselves. Besides, I know how intimidating your father can be.”

“Thanks,” Liz said quietly as she tried to calm Max’s frantic emotions through what remained of their connection.

They walked half the block in silence before Nancy commented, “Honey, your dad may never have the courage to tell you this, but I’m speaking for both of us when I say that we are very proud of you for trying to help out your……friend. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t necessarily approve of the methods you used, but I applaud you for your efforts. After all, kids today aren’t especially known for their selflessness, so your concern for him is quite commendable.”

“Thanks,” Liz said again, her cheeks pinking at her mother’s compliment, “but I can’t take all the credit. I was only following the example you and dad have always set for me.” She struggled to keep her voice from betraying her nervousness. Her awareness of Max’s feelings was increasing exponentially with each step toward the motel until she finally had to restrain herself from breaking away from her mother and running straight to him to find the love and reassurance they both needed to get through the next few hours.

“Well, thank you, honey,” her mom replied. They walked the remaining distance in silence, both pausing in front of Walgreens as if bracing themselves for battle.

Liz couldn’t miss the disapproving frown that came over her mother’s face when they crossed the street to approach the motel. “Mom, I know this place doesn’t look the best, but it isn’t nearly as bad as you think. The people I’ve met here are pretty nice.”

Her mother gave her a skeptical look. “I’m still getting used to the fact that you would even come to a place like this, so I’m not sure I want to hear how well you know the people who live here. Just let me deal with one thing at a time, please.”

Liz quickly nodded. It sounded like her mother was at least trying to be open-minded about her relationship with Max, so she certainly wasn’t going to say or do anything to turn the odds against her. She took several deep breaths as they came around the corner of the motel, her mother slowing down slightly so that Liz could lead them to the correct room. A few more steps and they would be there. Her pulse raced faster as they moved toward the entrance to Max’s latest home, her heart pounding just as insistently as the chaotic emotions spiraling through their connection. No sooner had she raised her hand to knock than the door flew open, strong, warm arms instantly pulling her into a tight embrace.

“Beauty!” Max’s emotion-laden voice choked out. ‘You’re all right. You’re all right,’ he desperately chanted in her mind as he swung her into the room. Her arms automatically wrapped around his neck as he buried his face in her hair, his eyes squeezed tightly shut against the frightening images he had conjured up of what had made Liz so upset.

‘Max, wait,’ Liz silently pleaded. ‘My mother…’

“Oh, Dear God!”

Max immediately jumped and began to cower at the sound of the woman’s outraged voice, Liz instinctively pulling him behind her to protect him from the perceived danger as she turned around to confront her mother. She had expected to see the usual hardened features that were always a part of her mom’s rare angry outbursts, so she was thrown off guard by a wide-eyed gaze and the horrified grimace that was partially hidden by a shaky hand.

‘It’s ok, Max. It’s just my mom. She won’t hurt you,’ Liz silently calmed her charge. “Mom?” her strangled voice sounded in the sparsely decorated room.

Nancy knew she needed air, yet she couldn’t manage to breathe. Closing the door behind her she forced herself to move slowly, cautiously toward the young man who had quickly become her daughter’s entire world. She lowered her hand from her mouth and used it to gently nudge a wary Liz away from the startled boy who trembled behind her, keenly aware that the two had clasped their hands tightly together, each holding on to the other for dear life. Reaching out her own quivering hand she whispered, “Are these what I think they are? Who did this to you?” as she touched one of nearly two dozen scars that peppered Max’s bare chest, his heart rapidly beating under her inquisitive finger. Liz had said he had been treated cruelly, but this…this went way beyond cruel treatment or even abuse. It bordered on torture.

“They’re burn marks from a cigarette,” Liz confirmed with a quiet wisdom beyond her years, “and it doesn’t really matter who made them unless you allow it to happen again.”

In that moment Nancy understood everything. The secrecy. The lying. The sneaking around. The depression. The devotion. The fierce determination to protect someone who had been either unwilling or unable to defend himself. Even now she could easily detect the fear radiating from her reluctant host, the same fear that was reflected in his eyes. If what she was seeing now was anywhere near what her daughter had seen six months earlier, then yes, she fully comprehended why she had never heard of Max until yesterday. She withdrew her hand from his skin and backed away, finally tearing her eyes away from him to address Liz. “Honey, why don’t we all sit down and talk a little,” she suggested.

Liz looked to Max before nodding in agreement, letting go of his hand just long enough for him to grab his T-shirt off the already made bed and pull it on. Nancy walked over to the door to pick her purse up off of the floor before placing it on the table and seating herself in one of the chairs. The young couple walked over to the side of the bed and sat down across from her, hands firmly clutched once again.

“Why don’t we start things off on the right foot this time,” Nancy suggested as she held her hand out toward Max. “It is very nice to meet you, Max. I’m Liz’s mom.”

Max looked at Liz before releasing her hand to accept Nancy’s. “It is nice to meet you, Mrs. Parker,” he said with a deep, rich voice that wavered just enough to reveal his continued uneasiness with the situation.

“You can call me Nancy if you like,” she replied as she gave his sweat-dampened hand a firm shake before releasing it. He nodded as he immediately returned his hand to Liz’s grasp. She wasn’t sure where to begin after that, so she simply said, “Liz has told me a little about you, Max, and since you two have obviously been spending quite a bit of time together, I thought it would be best for her father and I to meet you. I hope you don’t mind.”

“No, I don’t mind at all,” he answered politely as he slipped into a more relaxed demeanor. “As a matter of fact I had hoped to meet you sooner than this, but things have been a little…busy lately.”

Seeing the bed her daughter was sitting on, Nancy didn’t think she wanted to know exactly what had been keeping him busy, especially since Liz had obviously been with him the entire night before last. She had vowed to herself that she wouldn’t pass judgment on Max until she knew more about him, but it was more difficult than she had imagined. Liz was still her baby girl, after all. “Well, her father couldn’t come with us, but I know he is anxious to meet you,” she explained. “I was hoping that I might convince you to come back to the Crashdown with us so that the two of us could talk to you together.”

Max hesitated a moment before he answered her. “I would like to do that, but it would have to be later this morning. I was just getting ready to start working before you and Liz arrived.”

“Working?” she asked with confusion. Didn’t Liz say he had only started trusting people a few weeks ago? How could he possibly have found work? “You have a job?”

“Yes. I help Juanita clean the rooms on this side of the motel, and pretty soon I’ll be the handyman, too,” he said with a hint of pride. “I hope I can make enough money so that Liz doesn’t have to pay for my room anymore.”

This was not what she had expected at all. Somewhere in the back of her mind she had simply assumed that she would easily be able to expose Max as a dishonest leech who would stay interested in Liz only as long as she was willing to surrender her body and money for his greedy consumption. This boy may still be a mystery to her, but Nancy already knew that his motives for befriending Liz were not financial. His apparent discomfort with Liz bankrolling his room only confirmed that. However, she raised a questioning eyebrow as she asked, “How did you manage to rent a motel room in the first place? You are both minors, and the owner can get into some pretty deep trouble for renting to you.”

“Um, we had a friend get the room for us. He was over eighteen, and they don’t ask too many questions around here as long as the room gets paid for,” Liz explained hesitantly.

“I don’t suppose you would be willing to tell me the name of that friend of yours,” Nancy queried.

“Mom, please. He was just trying to help me out. I don’t want to get a bunch of people in trouble for my mistakes…” Liz trailed off as she looked over at Max with a panicked expression. His eyes were closed, but it was obvious to Nancy that her daughter’s words had hurt him. He pulled his hand away from Liz’s and stood up, immediately beginning to pace the room. “Max…” she implored.

“Mrs. Parker, please don’t be upset with Liz or her friends,” he beseeched as he stopped to look at Liz’s mother. “Everything they did was to help me, so if you want to be angry with someone, please take it out on me. None of this would have happened if it weren’t for me.”

Nancy’s heart broke at his impassioned plea. No teenage boy should look like that, as though the weight of the entire world was resting solely on his shoulders. She had seen that look a few times before, on her high school friend Barbara, on Denise Sampson from the Chamber of Commerce, on Jeff’s cousin Lucy before she got divorced, all people who had been physically and emotionally bullied into believing they were responsible for the terrible things that had been done to them. She didn’t want to be the one to make this young man have that look. “Max, why don’t you sit back down? I didn’t come here to take anything out on Liz or you or anyone else, and I know for a fact that my daughter here doesn’t consider anything she has done for you a mistake.” When Max did not make a move Nancy gestured to Liz with her eyes to go to him. There was absolutely no doubt in her mind that Max’s feelings for Liz were genuine. Otherwise, her innocent remark about making mistakes would not have disturbed him so deeply.

Liz gave her mother a subdued yet grateful smile before standing up to join him, and Nancy couldn’t help but marvel at the instantaneous change in this fragile boy just with the slight touch of Liz’s fingertips against his elbow. The adoring look the couple exchanged was one of the most beautiful things she had ever witnessed, and as much as she hated to admit it, these two obviously had a connection unique enough that it defied description. Even with Liz’s noticeable attempts to limit their physical contact, it had only taken those few fleeting moments to reveal how much they cherished each other. The gracefulness of their movements as Liz welcomed Max into her arms was extraordinary, each touch and caress coordinated as if they were moving as one being.

Feeling as though she were somehow invading a very private moment, Nancy averted her eyes from further observation of the couple in favor of perusing the room Max had been occupying. It appeared to be void of many personal effects and very neatly kept, a true mystery since a teenage boy was responsible for its upkeep. The only things that made the room stand out as having a resident were a small pile of books and a picture frame on the night stand, a frame that, not surprisingly, held two black and white photos of Liz that she had never seen before. After carefully scrutinizing them she reluctantly concluded that Liz was no longer her little girl, the antique wedding dress in the one picture seeming to be a perfect fit, both literally and figuratively.

Max’s reverently whispered “Beauty” shook Nancy out of her thoughts. Liz may no longer be a little girl, but she was still her daughter, and right now Nancy needed to know more about the young man who was evidently going to play a huge role in Liz’s future, whether or not she and Jeff approved. She returned her focus to the two teens who had once again taken their place on the edge of the bed before she quietly asked Max, “I’ve heard you call Liz ‘Beauty’ twice now. Unless I’m really out of the loop on the latest ‘in’ words, that isn’t an endearment one would generally hear a boy apply to his girlfriend. I’m curious to know why you use it.”

Max looked to Liz as though he were seeking her guidance, and if Nancy didn’t know better she’d swear that the two were actually speaking to each other without uttering a single word. They truly did have a special connection. When his gaze finally fell on Nancy, the emotions so openly displayed there simply blew her away. Liz had said that the fear in his eyes had convinced her to keep his existence a secret, and now, seeing the love he held for her daughter brimming from those same amber depths, she understood precisely what her daughter had meant.

“Before I met Liz,” he began, “there was an…elderly man who had helped me by giving me some clothing and leaving food for me to eat. Every time I saw him he would show me a picture of a woman and tell me she had been the most precious thing in the world to him, that she had made his life worth living. He had said that she was a beauty. At the time I didn’t know a lot of words, so I believed that ‘beauty’ was just another way to say girl or woman.”

“You didn’t know a lot of words?” Nancy asked in confusion. Although Max didn’t look Hispanic, it was still possible that he was an illegal immigrant. “Do you mean you didn’t know English?”

“I didn’t know any language,” he responded with an innocent sincerity.

“But what happened to your family? Didn’t they ever send you to school?” she asked with growing agitation, not wanting to hear what she instinctively knew was the truth. Certainly someone had cared about this young man at one point in his life.

“I’ve never been to school, Mrs. Parker,” he said before looking away from her. In a voice filled with both grief and awe he continued, “and I’ve never had a family. The people responsible for me abandoned me in the middle of the desert, and I’ve been on my own since then. I probably would have spent the rest of my life all alone if I hadn’t met Liz. She’s the only person besides the elderly man who has ever cared about me.”

“No one has ever tried to help you before?” Nancy asked in amazement.

“Every other person I had contact with before Liz either ignored me or tried to hurt me.”

Nancy had thought that Liz’s brief description of Max’s life had been somewhat exaggerated to garner sympathy from an angry set of parents, but she was now beginning to realize that if anything, Liz had glossed over how rough things had really been for him. “So Liz was telling the truth when she said that she was the first person you’ve ever spoken to?”


“And no one has ever taught you how to speak or read any kind of language?”

“No one but Liz,” he ardently replied. “She has taught me how to read and write English and has even shown me some math, too. I’ve learned a lot from her.”

Nancy noticed Liz’s cheeks flushing at Max’s compliment. It suddenly hit her that he was the ‘project’ Liz had been working on these past few weeks. Her daughter had been devoting all her free time to teaching a scared young man how to read and write and count. She couldn’t help but be filled with a sense of frustrated admiration. On the one hand Liz’s determination to help Max have a better life was inspiring, and now that she had seen for herself how easily he frightened she really did understand Liz’s secrecy. As a parent, however, Nancy couldn’t help but feel a little hurt that her daughter’s own trust had not extended to include her. Turning her attention back to Max she wondered what kind of sick person would intentionally keep a boy uneducated and then leave him to his own devices. “Max, do you know how long it was from the time you were abandoned until you first met Liz?”

He shook his head no. “I can’t tell you in days or months because I’m still having problems with the concept of time.” Looking at Liz he added, “On the wall of the bell tower I would make a mark every time the moon was…full. Maybe you can tell by counting the marks.”

“The bell tower?” Nancy questioned.

“It is part of an old church off of Highway 16,” Liz explained before relinquishing the floor to Max again.

“I used to take the food Liz would leave for me and go there to eat it. It used to be the only place I felt safe,” he remarked.

“And now?” Nancy asked with genuine curiosity.

“Now I feel safer than I ever have,” he replied as he rested his free hand on top of the one holding Liz’s hand, “and I have you to thank for that.”

“Me?” Nancy questioned.

“You and Mr. Parker. Without you there never would have been an Elizabeth Parker, and she is the only reason I am no longer afraid. She’s taught me how to trust by sharing her friends with me. She’s encouraged me to learn by teaching me. She’s inspired me to be the best person I can be.” A tear crept down his cheek as his words choked in his throat. “She’s shown me how wonderful it feels to love someone by giving me her love.”

“Max,” Liz whispered, nearly chastising him for voicing his feelings.

Ignoring Liz’s warning Max continued speaking to Nancy. “Now I call her Beauty, Mrs. Parker, because she is the most precious thing in the world to me, and she had made my life worth living. Please don’t let Them take me away from here, from my friends, from my job, from the only home I’ve ever known. Please don’t keep Liz away from me. I can’t survive without her.”

Nancy’s own cheeks dampened with tears as she watched her daughter pull Max into her arms, whispering soothing words into his ear as he buried his head in her neck and sobbed. “Shh, my love. I won’t let Them hurt you. It will be all right. You’re safe with me,” Liz cooed as she lovingly stroked Max’s hair.

Nancy was struck speechless as she observed the two teens interact, each of them taking comfort in the other’s embrace as if they had been doing so for a lifetime. Judging from Liz’s stern utterance they had apparently held a difference of opinion regarding how much of their relationship they should have revealed to her, but even their complete silence would not have been able to conceal the depth of their feelings for each other. Watching them together was like viewing a beautifully choreographed dance. They ebbed and flowed like ocean waves lapping at the shore, each providing exactly what the other needed in perfect measure to keep their unique bond free from imperfection. Love balanced fear, strength dissipated vulnerability, acceptance eliminated doubt. There was no denying that her daughter was half of a miracle.

This meeting had barely begun to scratch the surface of all the things Nancy wanted to know about Max and the strange circumstances surrounding his arrival into Liz’s life, but a few things were already abundantly clear. Separating these two would only cause both of them endless heartache. This young man loved her daughter as much as she loved him, quite a feat considering he had lacked affection for nearly all of his life. There was no way Liz would ever let social services get anywhere near him. Nancy had heard the same horror stories as Liz about kids who got lost in the system, ones who ended up receiving just as much abuse in their foster homes as they had in the homes from which they had been removed. Seeing Max break down in her daughter’s arms made her realize that he would never be strong enough on his own to endure the constant shuffling around that foster kids were subjected to. If he was the same age as Liz he only had a couple of years before he would be officially declared an adult anyway. She knew there had to be a better solution than turning him over to people who would see him as nothing more than another case number, and she was pretty sure she knew where that solution began.

Now all she had to do was convince Jeff.

Max is a farmer, Liz a developer. What happens when their visions of the American Dream collide? American Dream

[ edited 1 time(s), last at 23-Oct-2002 12:18:23 AM ]
posted on 26-Oct-2002 10:18:00 PM by SansuCry
Shamelessly plugging here:

This idea for a Halloween fic popped into my head yesterday, so I just had to write it. I can't see it going past ten parts or so, and I'm already writing part 4, so EoF won't be on the back burner for too long....

Anyway if you want to read it, click on the link in my sig.
Thanks for you patience and all the bumps.

posted on 13-Nov-2002 1:38:24 AM by SansuCry
Just wanted to give you an update...

RL is killing me, and I'm trying to finish up Tricks and Treats before I get back to this, since I had planned to have that story finished by Halloween.

More than likely I'll update this before American Dream because I need to write some Max POV for a while after all my Liz centric stuff for T & T.

Thanks for all the bumps and patience.

posted on 30-Jan-2003 1:45:32 PM by SansuCry
Just a little note to assure all you wonderful readers and bumpers that I have not abandoned this fic.

Because it is so long and involved it takes a lot of time and concentration to write this story while avoiding any CHADs. For this reason it got put aside for the holidays, with the intention of coming back to it after the first of the year. Unfortunately my family and I have been plagued by every sort of illness and other RL crap since then, so I'm a little behind schedule.

My goal is to:

1) Finish Twelve Days of Christmas within the next five days.
2) Finish the Epilogue to Tricks and Treats next.
3) Get out the new part of this within the next ten days.
4) Alternate between this and American Dream, depending on where my muse takes me.

Let's just hope I don't get thrown any more curve balls along the way!

Thanks for you continued patience with this. Your continued support is a real inspiration.


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 30-Jan-2003 1:47:04 PM ]
posted on 6-Feb-2003 11:04:45 PM by SansuCry
For those of you who only read the stories and don't bother to check the announcements, I decided to post this here.

Hi. Ok.

So, there's some really, really bad news. It is almost an exact certainty that this board as we know it will close on March 1. See, the calendars didn't make us any money... I think we lost some. More than that, the host has upped our monthly fees to $500. And. We've been having freaking "overage" charges for the last 2 months as well. Personally, I think we're being hosed by the host people. They have new management, and "our" guy isn't there anymore. We have had nothing but problems with them. I have asked repeatly for a bandwidth report for the whole box, and they simply will not give it to us. In short, we've gone through about 2 grand since the begining of the year. All of the donations you guys have contributed have been vanished.

Now, there are some options. Wendy and I have been scrambling to figure out what to do. We can move (again) to a different host, and rework everything to be on a UNIX platform instead of a Windows platform. That means more stability, and less board downtime (ask anyone who knows computers.. UNIX = good. Windows = buggy as hell). We can move over all the users and the stories. The stories would be staic and non-updatable, but still searchable (with a search function that works!), and linkable from other pages.

Other things that the new system would have:
1. upload your own icons
2. search function that works
3. email lost passwords automatically
4. instead of $500 per month, it's $500 for 5 months.

Now, we do have other options. We screwed up. We know that. So, we can let the board go. We can try moving back to EZBoard but we will more than likely get kicked off because of our bandwith usage. Wendy and I can step down, and let someone else take over the money and the server and try to fix things. The board will more than likely close for a few weeks while that happens (money and such switches hand). Know that we don't want to step down, but feel that we can't keep going the way things are. We love this site, and are very upset by this situation.

In our opinon, the server isn't fixable without a complete reinstall of the OS, which we can't really do remotely. We'd have to pay tech support $100 an hour to do it. We only have about $300 left right now.

So anyway, there it is. We want to take action as soon as we can. There's a poll where you can vote for what you would like done. Your input will decide the future of Roswell Fanatics.

Thank you,


My response:

As far as I'm concerned this board wouldn't be what it is without Heidi and Wendy, so I vote that you wonderful ladies stay at the helm and steer this ship to calmer waters.

I'll offer as much financial support as I can afford, since I'm sure it will still be cheaper than the shrink I would need to see if the board ceases to exist.


I love this board, and this is the only place I personally post my stories (although some of them are posted at Faith's site). I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that I would hate to see such a wonderful haven disappear.

That being said, I am begging all of you readers to go to this thread ( viewthread?forum=AMB_AP870995574&id=15992&page=1 ) and show your support for the wonderful ladies who work so hard to bring you this great place.

And when the time comes to offer financial support, I'm requesting that each of you send in something, even if it is a dollar, to support the wonderful fics that are posted on this site. I already hear the 'but I'm poor' or 'I can't afford to send money' comments out there. Well, be honest. Do you ever buy a can of soda out of a vending machine? How about that morning coffee at Starbucks? Or even a pack of gum? If so, then you can afford to give a buck or two to support this site.

Climbing down off of my soap box to go work on the next part of this fic.

posted on 15-Feb-2003 9:31:44 PM by SansuCry
Hey there everybody. I just read the note that said I will lose all my feedback in the board move, so this is what I am asking.

I love every piece of feedback I get and I truly appreciate the time it takes for you all to leave it, so I do save every last one of them. That being said, I have decided to wait until the move is over before posting any new parts to my stories. Two of them will be completed with the next posting, and I won’t have any time before next Saturday to save the feedback before the move. In the meantime I would also ask that you not post any more feedback on my threads.

When the new board is up, I should be putting out new parts to all my stories within a few days of the transfer. Once again, thank to all of you who have given me such wonderful encouragement with your feedback, and for all you lurkers I hope the move will give you the incentive to get out there and voice your opinions.