ALL YOU WANT
This fic is based on the song All You Want by Dido, which I of course don't own. It's about Max and Liz, whom I also don't own.
I'd like to watch you sleep at night,
To hear you breathe by my side
Liz sighed and flipped onto her stomach, completely unable to get comfortable. She hadn't slept in days. There was this weird electrical shock that kept running through her body. Something like this always happened when Max was close to Roswell. She tossed and turned again.
And although sleep leaves me behind,
There's nowhere I'd rather be.
She kept thinking of him. Of what he'd done to her, to them. He'd slept with Tess. He'd gotten Tess pregnant. Her worst fears had come to life…he'd gone after Tess, wanting to bring back his son.
Liz had tried to help him at first, knowing how dangerous Tess was. She'd killed Alex and Liz knew that Tess wouldn't hesitate to kill again.
But Max…he'd grown obsessed. He was convinced Tess hadn't really left the planet. That she and their son were still on Earth, hiding. Max began searching day and night, sometimes not returning to Roswell for weeks. Liz had tried to hold on, to pick up the remnants of their love and piece them back together. But their love was too fragile by then, too complex for Liz to piece together by herself. She had slowly lost her grasp on Max.
And now our bed is oh so cold,
My hands feel empty, no one to hold
All he cared about was finding his son. Michael and Isabel had tried to talk him out of his obsession, but that had angered him. He claimed they were all against him. He couldn't understand why no one wanted him near Tess.
I can sleep what side I want,
It's not the same with you gone.
Liz had slowly fallen back into a routine. Get up in the morning, go to school, work a shift at the Crashdown with Maria, do homework, sleep, start over. Liz began to feel like a robot, programmed to do only the simplest, most basic things. She hardly talked to anyone but Maria. Her grades slipped. Her parents worried. But she kept trudging along, from one day to the next, from one week to the next, from one month to the next, from one year to the next. It had been three years since Liz had last seen Max. Three long years of agony, knowing he was out there, not thinking of her. No, he was thinking of his son… and of Tess. Thinking of where Tess could be.
Oh if you'd come home,
I'll let you know that
All you want, is right here in this room, all you want
Liz's eyes snapped open as she heard a tapping. It sounded like it was coming form the front door of the small apartment she now occupied. She sat up and listened, holding her breath. Listening. Listening. And then she heard it, the tapping, again.
She quietly slid off the bed and slipped her feet into her slippers. She crouched down and reached under the bed, fumbling in the moonlight to find the baseball bat. Her hand met the cool metal of the handle and she pulled it out from under the bed, standing, and slowly shuffling out of the bedroom. As she was halfway across the kitchen, she heard the tapping again. But it wasn't just tapping, it was knocking. Someone was at her door.
"Who's there?" she called out. There was no response. She shuffled a few feet closer to the door and called out again. "Hello? Is someone there? Michael, if you're trying to scare me, I'll kick your ass!" Michael had tried to scare her before, as a joke. He lived two floors above her.
"Liz," a hoarse voice cried through the door. Liz stopped in midstep, trying to figure out who it was. The voice seemed vaguely familiar, like something she'd heard in a dream. It seemed unreal…but it was happening.
She took a deep breath and walked the rest of the way across the kitchen and to the door. She slowly unlatched the lock and inched the door open, not prepared for what she knew would be behind it.
"Liz…" She looked up into his warm amber eyes and she remembered. And she wanted.
And all you need, is sitting here with you, all you want
She stared in shock at Max. He looked no different than when she'd seen him three years earlier, yet he was different. 'He's a man,' she realized. 'He grew up, so did I.' He was dirty and disheveled. Finally she managed to say, "Come in, Max."
Max turned and looked down the hall, smiling. "Jeremy, come here. We'll be safe here." Liz watched as a small blond boy toddled down the hall and she felt like someone was trying to squeeze her heart, twisting it until it exploded. The boy, Jeremy, had Max's ears and eyes, but that's were the similarities stopped. He was practically the spitting image of Tess.
Tess. The one person she never wanted to see again. Because in all actuality, Max had chosen Tess over Liz. He may not love Tess, but he chased her around the world for three years instead of staying with the one he did love.
It's been three years, one night apart,
But in that night you tore my heart.
If only you had slept alone,
If those seeds had not been sown.
Max took the boy's hand and led him into Liz's apartment. Liz slowly returned to reality, not liking the way her mind kept wandering down memory lane. She realized that the apartment was still shrouded in darkness, so she flicked on the nearest light.
Max and Jeremy sat on her couch while she filled a glass with water and one with milk. She returned to the living room and handed the drinks to Max and Jeremy.
Jeremy eyed Liz warily as he gulped down his milk. Max and Liz sat, staring at each other, neither knowing how to break the silence…neither wanting to break the silence. The silence was their delicate barrier. As long as the barrier remained, they didn't have to face what had happened over the past three years. They could just sit and pretend everything was perfectly fine. But Liz knew it wasn't. The more she looked at Max the more she wanted to run to him and kiss him. And she realized by his expression that he wanted the exact same thing.
Oh you could come home and you would know that
All you want, is right here in this room, all you want,
All you need is sitting here with you, all you want.
As they stared into each other's eyes, Liz remembered the last time they'd seen each other. At that time she was living in a different apartment, one to which Max had a key. He had come in that night, as if it wasn't a rare occasion. Liz had squealed with delight and ran to greet him, jumping into his arms.
And then he'd told her. He knew where Tess and his son were hiding, but they were well protected. It would take him a long time to get his son safely away from Tess.
The next morning Liz had awoken to discover that he'd already left again. And she'd promised herself she'd not take him back the next time. She'd promised herself that would be the last time she'd allow him to walk in and out of her life so easily, as if her feelings meant nothing.
I hear your key turning in the door,
I won't be hearing that sound any more.
And you and your sin can leave the way you just came in,
Send my regards to her.
Liz knew that the longer she just stared at Max and prolonged the barrier of silence, the less chance she'd have of being able to tell him to leave. Max smiled then and she knew it was all over. She couldn't turn him away. No matter how hard she'd tried over the years, she couldn't stop a small, secluded part of herself from loving him. Now, that small, secluded part of herself was rising to the surface of her heart, expanding.
She noticed that Jeremy was asleep on the couch next to Max. She smiled and stood up. "We can put Jeremy in the guest room," she said. Max gently picked up the little boy and followed Liz to a small room at the back of the apartment. He laid him down on the bed and proceeded to take off his jacket and shoes, as Liz stood in the doorway, watching.
I hope you've found that,
All you want, is right there in that room, all you want
All you need is sitting there with you, all you want
Max finished up and joined Liz in the hall, quietly shutting the guest room door behind him. Neither Max or Liz said a word as they went to her bedroom. He stripped down to his boxers and got into the bed next to her. His arms slowly encircled her petite body, holding her close.
I'd like to watch you sleep at night,
To hear you breathe by my side.
Liz lay awake as Max slowly drifted off. She knew they had a lot to work out between them. They had so much to talk about. But for now Liz was content to lie in his arms, watching him sleep and listening to him breath. He was all she wanted and that's all that mattered.