Forever and a Day
Or, Fixing the Damage

Yes, this is yet another post-Departure fic. I had to give my take
on what I think, or rather hope, will happen. What can I say...I'm
a dreamer til the end, baby.



Til my body is dust
Til my soul is no more
I will love you, love you
Til the sun starts to cry
And the moon turns to rust
I will love you, love you

But I need to know
Will you stay for all time
Forever and a day
Then I'll give my heart
Til the end of all time
Forever and a day

And I need to know
Will you stay for all time
Forever and a day
Then I'll give my heart
Til the end of all time
Forever and a day

'Til the storms fill my eyes
And we touch the last time
I will love you, love you...

--Fisher, "I Will Love You"




Maria drove on the way home. Trying to squeeze six people into an old
Jetta was a challenge, but they managed. Maria drove, Kyle rode shotgun;
Max, Liz, Isabel and Michael squeezed into the backseat.

Everyone now knew things about the others they had never known before.
Michael really did love Maria, enough to leave his lifelong dreams
behind for her. Liz had never slept with Kyle...and Max and Liz loved
each other.

Liz watched Max out of the corner of her eye. The elation she'd felt
when Max had come out of the cave, unharmed and without Tess, had
slowly faded as they left the open desert behind. Despite their mutual
love, or perhaps because of it, she knew things could never be the
same between them. The betrayal she'd felt had been too great. But
the desire was still there. *I saved myself for you...*

Max was doing the same to Liz, not aware, apparently, that Michael and
Isabel noticed this. They looked at each other sadly. Isabel didn't
know if she'd ever find another love, but she knew she'd never have a
love like Max and Liz had. If she was lucky, she'd be able to find a
reasonable facsimile.

The silence continued as Max's words echoed in everyone's skulls.
*I have to save my son...* An impossible mission, an impossible hope.

****

Tess looked around, a smile filling her round face. The hall was filled
with beautiful faces. They all seemed awestruck as she emerged from the
granolith's landing pad. She had done nothing to it during the journey;
it had steered itself and wound up here.

She stretched a little, hesitating, unsure of what to do. Then the door
at the end of the great hall opened and a face she knew from her dreams
and her nightmares entered.

****

Valenti sat on the sofa in his living room, staring at the fuzz on the
television. Gone, he couldn't believe they were gone. All four of
them, on their way back home, after so disrupting...and enriching...
his life for the past two years.

He was snapped out of his trance by the sound of a persistent knocking.
"What the hell?" he muttered to himself. Who would be knocking on his
door this early in the morning? Unless it was Mr. or Mrs. Evans...but
no, that couldn't be. They must be used to their kids being out late
by this point, and they couldn't have found the tape he had dropped
at their house yet.

Cautiously, he grabbed his shotgun from the coat closet and opened
the door slowly. "Brody?" he said in total surprise.

The man pushed his way past Valenti and entered the house. "You have
to help me," he gasped. "They're going to do it again, they're going
to take me."

****

The silence continued on the way home. As Maria steered the car toward
the Evans residence, Isabel spoke up, breaking the awkward silence.
"Maria, we need to go to Kyle's house. We have to get that tape back
from Valenti before he gives it to our parents."

"What tape?" Liz asked.

Isabel looked at her, her lip quivering a little. "We made a tape to
our parents -- saying goodbye."

"Oh," Liz said softly, and the car fell silent again as Maria turned
the car toward the Valenti home.

****

"Oh God," Brody said as he settled onto Valenti's couch, much to the
ex-sheriff's dismay. "It's happening, I can feel it."

"Brody, calm down. What is it? What's happening?"

"The aliens," he hissed angrily. "They're going to take me, goddammit.
They do it -- they do it, and I have no control over it." Valenti
watched, half in horror, half awe-struck, as the younger man suddenly
went very still, then craned his head, very slowly, to look at Valenti.
"They'll be here very soon," he said with conviction.

"What? Who will..." he was interrupted by more knocking on his door.
Feeling like cursing, he opened it again. "Max? Isabel?" he silently
counted the rest of them to himself. "Where's Tess?"

****

All six of them piled into the living room. Max jumped a little when
he saw Brody sitting on the couch in front of the television. "Brody?
What are you..." The only reason Brody would be here at this time of
the morning occurred to him. "Oh. Hi, Larek."

Valenti said, "Larek? Is that the..."

Brody/Larek scowled. "You've made a very big mistake today, Max. The
worst mistake you possibly could have made."

Max shook his head. "I don't think so, Larek."

"You don't understand what will happen back home."

Valenti cleared his throat. "Does anyone mind if I ask what the hell
is going on here?"

Brody/Larek glared at him. "Max, I'd really prefer it if we could
be alone."

"No, Larek. They all stay."

"What is going on?" Valenti shouted.

Isabel glanced at him and told him what had happened after he'd left
them on the road to the granilith. His face went pale and he sank
onto the couch next to Brody, who managed to look even more irritated.
"Oh God. I never suspected."

Kyle gave his father a hug. "Me either, dad. I don't think any of us
did, except for..." he looked at Liz. She shrugged.

"Listen, Max...all of you, listen, I suppose that this will affect you
all.

They all gathered together, sitting down to hear what the alien had to
say.

"The resistance is getting ready to overthrow Khivar. What they do not
know is that you did not come back with your wife and child as expected.
Without you, despite all their power, they cannot hope to overthrow his
total -- I suppose the English word would be "dictatorship." What you
do not understand -- and what Tess clearly did not understand
-- is what will happen to both her and her child once she reaches Antar.
Khivar has no intention of allowing her to become "queen" in anything
but name. He will rule in her name, in your absence, until your child
comes of age. However, Max's child as raised by Tess will become
powerful, but he, also, will be ruled by Khivar. Khivar will control
his every thought and action. With that kind of power, no one will
ever be able to defeat him."

"What will it be like for my son?" Max asked stoically.

"It will be a very sheltered life. He will never know that he is feeding
his power to Khivar. He will believe that he is only ruling on your
behalf until you return, but in reality, he will be powerless."

"There must be something we can do for him," Isabel cried. This was her
nephew, whether she liked to admit it or not.

Brody/Larek shook his head. "There is nothing. The granolith is gone.
There is no other method of return, without Khivar's express permission."

Max licked his lips, trying to clear the dryness from his mouth. "What
about the resistance? You said they're powerful."

"They will never defeat Khivar on their own, and if nothing is done to
help their cause by you, they will never win at all."

"What can we do to help their cause?" Liz asked quietly, her head on
Max's shoulder, not aware that very, very soon she might regret asking
that question.

Brody/Larek paused. "There is only one thing. It will not save the child
that Tess is carrying, but it may save the future of our people."

He looked around the room at the six teenagers. Max and Liz were front
and center, Liz sitting crosslegged with her head resting tiredly on
Max's shoulder. Isabel sat alone in a corner, dark circles streaking
her pretty brown eyes. Kyle and his father had moved from the couch and
stood behind the television. Maria sat on Michael's lap, a few feet from
Max and Liz.

"You can have another child here, Max. If that child returns, he can
kill the child who is born on Antar. A child born from love, not coercion,
will be stronger than the boy who is now growing in Tess's womb."



Forever and a Day, Part 2

Or, Poor, poor Liz...and damn that lucky Max man!

Rating: will eventually be NC-17...for now, a mere PG-13.
Category: Uh...post ep?


Til my body is dust
Til my soul is no more
I will love you, love you
Til the sun starts to cry
And the moon turns to rust
I will love you, love you

But I need to know
Will you stay for all time
Forever and a day
Then I'll give my heart
Til the end of all time
Forever and a day

And I need to know
Will you stay for all time
Forever and a day
Then I'll give my heart
Til the end of all time
Forever and a day

'Til the storms fill my eyes
And we touch the last time
I will love you, love you...

--Fisher, "I Will Love You"



Everyone was looking at Liz. She'd asked the question. Her eyes were
wide, and she seemed to have moved a few feet away from Max without
noticing it.

"There must be some other way," Max said harshly, looking away from Liz.

"No, Max. This has been discussed in length since the granolith left
carrying only Tess. Had you gone with her, you might have been able
to save yourself and your child. Now, that will become far more difficult.
And with your own child against you..."

He pursed his lips. "Well, I mean...it's no big deal. I mean, everyone
has kids once they're out of college and married. It's only a matter of
a few years."

Brody/Larek looked at him. "You don't have the advantage of that kind
of time, Max. The clock is ticking."

"But won't another child just have the same problem that Tess's did?
Won't the atmosphere of this planet harm another unborn baby?" Isabel
asked.

Brody/Larek chuckled. "If you are ever to rule, you must gain some
more common sense. Tess lied about the baby being in trouble. She
controlled your minds to make you believe it, the same as she had
always done. She needed an excuse to deliver you into Khivar's hands,
and that was the only one she could think of, apparently, that would
convince Max to come without bending his judgment even farther than
she had already done. If you think logically, though, your mind will
tell you that this could not be so. None of you were harmed by this
atmosphere since your arrival here. It would be no different for an
unborn child of two hybrids like Max and Tess, as they were engineered
to exist in this atmosphere; in fact, even if the atmosphere did harm
the baby, the baby would be protected by the mother's womb."

"Well...who? I mean, how? There aren't any other female hybrids like
me. Would it even be possible to...with..."

"I think you know the answer to that, Max," Brody/Larek said softly.
"I should think it's become clear even to someone as dense as you've
proven, in these past few months. The child must be conceived in
love; that will be the source of its power."

With that, Brody's head fell forward as though he were asleep. He nodded
awake, looked around in puzzlement, and then said loudly, "Goddammit all
to bloody hell, they've done it again!"

****

Max followed Liz home from the sheriff's house. She had refused to get
back into Maria's car, instead stumbling outside in a daze. Valenti
had attempted to convince Liz to let him drive her home, but she refused.
She said she wanted to be alone, but Max dashed after her.

She turned to him angrily. "Max, what part of 'I wanted to walk home
alone' didn't you understand?"

"Liz, we have to talk about this."

"There's nothing to talk about, Max. Leave me alone."

"I don't know how I can ask you to do this, Liz."

"That's good, because you can't! You can't ask me to do it. Max, I...
I love you, more than anything. But I don't trust you, and I don't
know if I ever can again. I know that for a long time you didn't
trust me. But what I did...I did it for your sake, because it was
what I thought was best for you."

Max hesitated. He was almost panting to keep up with her, even with
the major height disparity working in his favor. Work those little
legs, Liz, he thought to himself. "What did happen, Liz? What the
hell happened to you that you would *pretend* to sleep with Kyle?
Just to hurt me?" His voice cracked a little with his last sentence.

She looked at him, searching his face with those beatiful dark eyes
that had ripped his heart out so easily. "You won't believe me."

He groaned. "Liz, not to sound like Maria, but who are you talking
to, here? I'm the guy from 'up north'."

Liz laughed, but it didn't sound at all like her normal laughter.
"Okay, Max. You used the granolith to return from the future, and
you told me that if I didn't push you toward Tess, she would leave
Roswell and you would be defeated because of it, causing the end
of the world."

Max stopped, stunned, pulling her arm to stop her dead on the sidewalk.
"Liz..."

She tried to laugh again, but a little tear came out of her eye. "You
know, the night this happened, Maria, Alex and I, we went to see a
fortune teller. And she told Alex, she told him he'd never have...you
know. And then he was killed, and I don't think he ever did, now that
I know he spent his whole time in 'Sweden' at Las Cruces. She told
me...she told me that you would choose your love for me over your
destiny, and I was so happy. But later that night *he* showed up.
And he was you, Max...older, wiser, much sadder. But he was you.
I would...I will know you anywhere, always. You know...by the end
of that night, I didn't think any of that woman's fortunes would come
true. But when you came out of the granolith chamber alone...I wanted
it so badly, Max, and I knew you never loved Tess. But I'm not even
ready to *be* with you right now, much less have a baby with you! I'm
seventeen years old, Max!"

She collapsed into tears and broke into a run, moving as fast as her
legs would carry her toward home. Max watched her go, standing in
the middle of the street in broad daylight.

****

Tess gasped slightly at the sight of Khivar. He was older than she
expected...much older than he'd been in her dreams. He was an old
man, by any race's standards. She hadn't realized how long it had
really been since he had killed the Royal Four and taken over Antar,
but evidently, it had been quite awhile.

"My beautiful Ava...in the flesh once again," Khivar said, with a
sickly grin on his face. "And carrying the child of your husband,
just as the terms of the deal required. So tell me, Ava dear...or
what is your name now? Tam?"

"Tess," she whispered, almost frozen in fear.

"Tess..." he said, drawing out the "s" sound at the end of her name
to make it sound like the hiss of a snake. "Tess, my dearest, my
sweet, I believe that there were more terms to this deal. And unless
someone is late...those remaining terms have not been met."

Everyone in the hall was still and silent, their eyes rooted on the
returned Queen and Khivar.

He took her face between his spindly hands and, with amazing strength,
twisted her neck until she whimpered in pain. Khivar leaned into her
ear and whispered, "This is unsatisfactory to me. Now, tell me,
dearest Queen...what are we to do with you?"

****

Maria dropped Isabel off at the Evans residence before turning towards
Michael's apartment. He looked at her from his place in the passenger
seat. Her long blonde locks blocked most of her face from his sight,
so he reached out and brushed them away, behind her ears. She didn't
look at him. "Maria...what are you thinking?"

She tore her eyes off the road for just a moment, but instead of
looking at her boyfriend, she looked at the steering wheel, then turned
off the soft music playing on the radio. "I don't know, Michael."

"What do you think Liz will do?"

They had reached Michael's little apartment building. Maria stopped
the Jetta and put it in park, finally looking him in the eye. "I don't
know what Liz will do. But I do think this is much too much to ask of any
seventeen-year-old girl, much less one who's had her heart broken by a
cheating alien."

Michael gaped at her. "What are you talking about? Liz cheated on him
first!"

Maria smirked. "How little you know, space boy."

"What do you mean?"

"Go home, Michael." She pointed at the door of the apartment building.

He opened the door, glaring at her. "I want to know what's going on,
Maria. I don't like being left out like this."

"Whatever, spaceboy. Get on home."

"I guess this means you aren't coming in with me?"

"No," she said, rolling her eyes and smiling a little. "You can only get
that lucky once in twenty-four hours."

****

Max walked in the door to the living room of his house. The first person
he saw was Isabel. "Max," she said with a dry mouth.

"What's wrong, Iz?" he asked, his brow furrowing. Just what he needed --
an upset sister to go with everything else.

"Uh, Max, maybe you should come in here," she said, her voice barely audible.

Max frowned and walked the rest of the way into the living room. Sitting
on the couch across from the television were his parents. And frozen on the
screen was an image of himself and Isabel, speaking to the camera.



Forever and a Day, Part 3


Or, Poor, poor Liz...and damn that lucky Max man!

Rating: will eventually be NC-17...for now, a mere PG-13.
Category: Uh...post ep?


Til my body is dust
Til my soul is no more
I will love you, love you
Til the sun starts to cry
And the moon turns to rust
I will love you, love you

But I need to know
Will you stay for all time
Forever and a day
Then I'll give my heart
Til the end of all time
Forever and a day

And I need to know
Will you stay for all time
Forever and a day
Then I'll give my heart
Til the end of all time
Forever and a day

'Til the storms fill my eyes
And we touch the last time
I will love you, love you...

--Fisher, "I Will Love You"

"Can you tell me the exact meaning of this, son?" Mr. Evans said from
over on the couch. He didn't even get up, which was a bad, bad sign.
"Why your mother had to wake up to find a video that frightened her
half to death, to discover you two missing -- *not*, I might add, an
unusual occurence as of late. Where the hell have you been? And why
did you record this -- this joke of a videotape and leave it for us
to find?"

Max looked at his sister. Tears were welling in her eyes, but she
looked at him hopefully.

He sat heavily on the arm of the chair next to her and laid a hand on
her shoulder. "I think...I think there's something Isabel wants to
tell you, mom and dad." He looked down at her, feeling guilty and
ashamed, but she had wanted this for so long, and now it was up to
her to choose, and if she so chose, to explain.

Isabel swallowed and said, "Mom...Dad...we've always known we were
adopted. But we've always known something else, too."

****

Liz lay in her bed, exhausted after a sleepless night but unable to
rest. Her mind was spinning and roaring along at a million miles an
hour. Max loved her. Max loved her, and she loved him, but she
couldn't give up her life for him. Not after what he'd done -- what
they'd both done. She'd seen a lot in the last year. How could she
even bring herself to -- to go to bed with him, after he'd been with
that murderer? After he'd got her pregnant, with only one try?

Well, God, she hoped it was only one try. The thought of them having
sex at all made her feel physically ill. If they'd done it more than
once, then...maybe it would have meant something, even though she knew
Max would swear to her that it hadn't. But maybe that was half of the
problem. He'd slept with a girl he didn't love, who didn't mean
anything to him. Who would do that? She thought she had known Max
better than that, but maybe she hadn't.

Maybe she'd never really known him at all.

Of course, there was always the "mind warp" excuse. But Max knew he'd
had sex with Tess. It wasn't like Kyle or Amy, where they had forgotten
what happened and replaced it with something else. Could she have
clouded his judgment somehow? How could Liz ever know?

Liz sighed and turned over, burying her face in her pillow.

****

Tess had given up on tears hours ago.

If they even went by hours here. For all her past-life memories, she
had no idea what unit of time they used. And in all her past-life
memories, she remembered nothing like this room.

She'd been dragged to the basement of the royal palace by Khivar's
guards. With a smirk on his face, he'd ordered the "absolute best"
treatment for the Queen.

"Absolute best" apparently meant a tiny, locked, dark room no larger
than a prison cell. Just before throwing her in here, the guards had
slipped a tiny headband around her forehead. She hadn't figured out
what it was for until she tried to mindwarp the guards, and was rewarded
with agonizing flashes of excruciating pain that left her screaming.
She got the same treatment when she tried to remove it. She could pound
on the door all she wanted, but no one came or even noticed, as far as
Tess could tell.

Khivar had made it clear that she would now serve one purpose and one
purpose only. She would bear Max's child. And if she wanted to
live beyond that date -- if what she knew of her own biology was true,
it was less than a month away -- she'd have to prove her usefulness
in some other way. The ancient alien dictator had grinned at her as
he'd said it. Tess shuddered at the memory and brushed her hand
against the headband, wincing as it gave her the slightest flash of
pain.

What had she gotten herself and her baby into?

****

Maria lay in bed, fanning herself in the late spring heat. She hated
the desert, really. Maybe one day she'd be able to talk Michael into
leaving with her. He wouldn't want to stay by Max's side forever, she
told herself. And what they'd had last night...that had been wonderful.
She'd thought it would hurt a lot worse than it had, though she
suspected that Michael's small amount of healing abilities might have
come into play where that was concerned. And he'd come back for her.
He'd left Max for her once. And she knew he would do it again.

Her thoughts shifted to her best friend, who, she was willing to bet,
was having the same problem she was -- tired, but unable to sleep in
the bright daylight. Poor Liz, she mused. Everyone always asked so
much of her. But this was just too much. Nobody in their right mind
would expect her to have Max's kid, just because some crazy alien said
it might save some far-off planet. It would ruin Liz's life. Anything
that Liz might become, she could never become just another statistic in
some moralistic, preachy magazine article.

She rolled onto her stomach and eyed the telephone. Liz was going to
call her, any second now. She just knew it.

Maria glared at the phone. "Why aren't you ringing?" she muttered.

****

"Mom, I'm...I'm sure you've noticed. Actually, I know you have. Last
year, Max put out a grease fire in the kitchen almost before you could
see what was happening, and you knew something strange was going on.
And I wanted to tell you so badly, but..."

Their mother looked almost paralyzed, but why, Isabel didn't know.

"I...I couldn't. There are so many things I want to tell you that I
can't."

"Isabel...why?" their mother asked, a tear finally falling down her
cheek, her voice choked.

"I was afraid, Mom. I was afraid that you wouldn't love us anymore,
because we aren't like you. We're different."

Max groaned inwardly, his inner self cursing repeatedly. Here it comes,
we're not even going to have a place to live anymore, they're going to
call the government...

"What do you mean, different?" their father asked quietly.

Isabel glanced at her brother. Despite his reservations, he put a hand
on her shoulder to reassure her. This was what she'd wanted for so long,
and now he was going to support her in it.

"We...we have abilities. They aren't normal. We can do things...that
people can't. We're not...we aren't...human."

Their parents looked at each other, then at Max, who was ghostly pale,
and at Isabel, who was crying freely. Phillip cleared his throat and said,
"Of course you're human."

Max shook his head, finally speaking up. "No, we aren't."

"Son...you are human. We've known you weren't ordinary since we found
you by that roadside. It's been obvious...how do two ordinary
six-year-olds, totally naked, survive long enough in the desert for all
traces of who abandoned them to be obliterated? You two couldn't be
normal six-year-olds. You didn't speak English. You didn't speak any
language at all, but we looked at you two and we could tell you were
talking to each other without using any words at all. Both of you were
uncannily able to tell what we were thinking. You learned English with
extraordinary speed. When we adopted you, there was no record of you --
or any twins gone missing of your age -- in the entire United States, or
anywhere else so far as we could tell. We've always known you weren't
normal. But we never knew if you two realized how unusual you really
are."

Diane spoke up. "We've been waiting for this moment for a long time,
you two. Whatever you are, wherever you came from, you're our children.
We love you. The reason the video upset us so much is because you were
going to leave our lives so suddenly, the same way you came into them.
And you're my children, the same as if I'd had you from my own womb.
To us, you're human. You're more human...better humans...than most
people we've ever known. And we're so proud of you."

Isabel sobbed and ran from the chair into her mother's arms. "I love
you, Mom. I love you so much."

Phillip smiled at his son, who looked a little dazed. "Come on, Max.
You didn't think we were that dense, did you?"

Max looked at his father in amazement. "Uh, I...I..."

Diane kissed the top of Isabel's head and said, "Just don't ever...ever
do this to us again, you two. Promise me."

"We won't," Max said, his mouth dry.

The phone rang from in the kitchen. "I'll get it," said Phillip, not
really wanting to leave the living room. "Max...it's for you."

Max frowned slightly, his brow creasing. It had better not be Michael.
He really didn't want to deal with Michael right now.

"Hello?" he said, taking the receiver his father handed to him.

"Hi, Max," said Liz's soft voice.

****

Maria drove the Jetta towards the Crashdown at high speed. Something
was wrong. In every other situation like this, Liz would have called
her by now. And she'd tried calling Liz, but the phone had been busy.
All this just confused her more and more.

She parked on the street in front of the restaurant, which had just
opened a few minutes before for the late-breakfast crowd. Was she
supposed to work tonight? Shit. She couldn't remember. She walked
through the small crowd in the Crashdown and into the back, to the
stairs that led up to the Parker's apartment. Mr. Parker noticed her
and nodded. "Liz is in her room, Maria."

The door was closed. That was unusual in and of itself. Maria frowned
unhappily as she heard two voices inside.

She yanked open the door to reveal Max and Liz, sitting on Liz's bed.




Author's Note: OK y'all, I'm depending on you. I'm leaving tomorrow for vacation
and I'm not going to be back for three weeks. I'd really like to keep this whole
story on this thread, but chances are, it's going to fall off the board if it's
neglected this whole time. I'm depending on you guys to keep it alive for me
when I get back. I *promise* that I will have a chapter ready when I get back.
Hell, what else am I going to do on an eight-hour plane ride?



Forever and a Day, Part 4

Rating: will eventually be NC-17...for now, a mere PG-13.
Category: Uh...post ep?


Til my body is dust
Til my soul is no more
I will love you, love you
Til the sun starts to cry
And the moon turns to rust
I will love you, love you

But I need to know
Will you stay for all time
Forever and a day
Then I'll give my heart
Til the end of all time
Forever and a day

And I need to know
Will you stay for all time
Forever and a day
Then I'll give my heart
Til the end of all time
Forever and a day

'Til the storms fill my eyes
And we touch the last time
I will love you, love you...

--Fisher, "I Will Love You"



"So," Maria said, her arms crossed accusingly, "What are you doing
here, Mr. Alien Lover-Man?"

Max opened his mouth to retort, but Liz shushed him. "I called
him, Maria."

Maria's jaw dropped? "What? You called the man who wants to
impregnate you with his alien sperm before you called me?"

"It's not like I'm going to rape her, Maria," Max snapped.

"No need," she growled back. "The girls just fall all over your
sweet ass, don't they?"

Liz said, "Shut up, both of you. Let me talk." She took a deep
breath and looked at her best friend. "I know you care about me
and that's why you're here, and I love you for it. But this is
between Max and I."

"But...I..."

"I...we need to be alone, to talk alone. It's our business." She
paused and rubbed her eyes tiredly. "I'll call you later, okay?"

Tears filled Maria's eyes and she stumbled angrily towards the
door. "Liz, if you get pregnant, then it'll be everybody's
business."

Liz closed her eyes and sighed deeply as she heard the door
slam shut. Max reached for her hand, but she pulled it away. He
winced. She waited as she heard Maria's angry footsteps
retreating down the stairs. "You know, she's right."

Max looked blank. "In what way?"

"Have you really thought any of this out? At all? I mean, I used
to think you planned everything at least ten years in advance, but
judging by the events of the last few months..." She let the
implication hang in the air.

"Sure. It's all I've been thinking about for the last..."

"The last what? Five hours?"

"This is every bit as much of a shock to me as it is to you, Liz.
I'm just as...inexperienced in this as you are. I've never had
to deal with this before."

"You aren't that inexperienced, Max. Not anymore."

He squeezed his temples. "God, Liz. I know. And I can't tell
you how much I..."

"Don't start, Max. Let me say what I want to say, okay? Don't
interrupt me, don't say anything, for the next few minutes.
Okay? That's why I called you over here."

"Okay."

"Max, you haven't let any of the implications of this even touch
you. Tess's pregnancy wasn't normal at all. She knew she was
pregnant the...the morning after, which means that there was more
of a baby there than just a tiny mass of dividing cells. And I'm
guessing that the pregnancy would progress with the same speed.
Think about that, Max. You didn't even have to think about it
before, but how would it look if I was pregnant for a month and
then mysteriously had a baby? I wouldn't be able to stay here in
Roswell. I don't know where I could stay. I probably wouldn't
be able to give birth in a hospital. Besides that, I'm seventeen
years old. I have three hundred dollars in my bank account. I
don't have a high school diploma. I can't properly raise or care
for a child."

Max tried to interrupt her and she put her hand gently on his
mouth to shush him, ignoring the sparks that still shot through
her at this smallest touch. "Beyond that, Max, why should I do
this? For the good of *your* planet? What about my planet? What
about *me*? I know I've said this before to you, Max, but I
practically killed myself for you. The look on your face that
night...I cried for hours. Then when you finally seemed to be
getting along with Tess...it hurt even worse, it was splitting me
apart inside. I couldn't stand it. This last month has been the
worst month of my entire life. And right now you're making it
worse."

"What I want to ask you, Max, is...can you make it better?"

****

Maria stumbled out the front door, ignoring Mr. Parker's puzzled
look at the drying tears on her face. She got in the Jetta and
pulled it into traffic without looking. She didn't even look
back to see who had honked their horn and nearly crashed into a
fire hydrant to avoid a collision with her.

She drove the few blocks to Michael's apartment building, ringing
the buzzer as she hurriedly wiped at her tears. Michael buzzed
her in automatically and she went down the hall to his apartment,
knocking softly on the door.

"Hey, baby," he greeted her, and then immediately noticed the
dried tear-tracks on her face. "Whoa, what's wrong?"

****

Tess could feel the baby inside her squirming. She could hardly
blame him. If she weren't tied down, she'd be doing the same
thing. Her belly was starting to bulge already, and she was only
two weeks pregnant. According to Khivar, the "doctors" on Antar
were highly interested in investigating her pregnancy. They'd
never seen what a mating between two hybrids could produce.

The doctor -- or the equivalent of it -- walked in wearing a
white labcoat -- every alien's worst nightmare. Tess bit back a
whimper, telling herself she had to be strong. She'd gotten
herself into this mess and now she would get herself out.

Ever since she'd been thrown into the little cell she now called
home, she'd been reviewing her mistakes in her mind. Alex had
taken too long at Las Cruces. If she could have persuaded him
to go a little faster, she wouldn't have had to destroy his
memory. And she never should have trusted that girl, that college
student. Should've known she'd screw up. Goddammit, why couldn't
everything have gone as planned? She'd be lounging on a throne
right now...if only it hadn't been for that little slut. That
Liz, coming and taking her King away as if she'd had some
right...it had all been predestined. Why had she thought she
could get away with interrupting that?

"Hello, Tess," said the "doctor."

****

Max swallowed, his throat suddenly feeling dry. "How do you mean?"

"Can you make this better? Can you heal everything that's happened in
the last year? Can you erase it, make it seem as though it never happened?
Because I need that right now. I need that if I'm going to be with you
ever again. I can't trust you. I don't know if you trust me. Can you
do that for me, Max? Because I love you and I want everything to be
right between us. But right now I go to sleep every single night wishing
I could take it all back. Wishing that everything that's ever happened
between us could just disappear, because it hurts me so bad."

"How can I do that, Liz? I can't take back a year. I would if I could,
but..."

She looked at him, her dark eyes glowing in the light streaming through
her window. "That's up to you to figure out, Max."

"Will you even..."

"No, Max. Not before."

He groaned slightly. Suddenly, he somehow couldn't believe that the fate
of his whole planet depended upon the whims of a teenage human being.
He tried to think. Brody/Larek had said that the child had to be conceived
in love. Obviously, right now that couldn't happen, so was it just a moot
point? It looked as though Child No. 2 was going to have to wait. Not
that he...he shook himself mentally. God, no wonder Liz was having such a
hard time forgiving him. He was even thinking like an asshole.

"Okay, Liz. Let's just talk."

"Talk? Talk how?"

"Let's talk like...like we barely know each other. A normal conversation."

She looked at him, one eyebrow raised. "I don't know if that's possible."

"Oh, come on."

"Well...as long as you don't want me to do some cheesy fake introduction."

Max laughed. "No. I knew your name in the third grade, Liz. No
introductions necessary."

****

Tess tried not to let her muscles clench as the "doctor" examined her.
"All seems well," he muttered, more to himself than to her. "No
further tests necessary."

She let out an inward sigh of relief.

"Are you sure?" asked a voice from the doorway, someone she hadn't noticed
before. "Khivar said..."

The doctor turned around. "Yes, I'm sure. I'm the healer here, not Khivar."

The other man shrugged and walked away. The healer watched him go, then
shut the door lightly behind him. He began to pack up his instruments,
making sure every single one made a loud clank. Through the din, he said
smoothly, "I'm with the resistance. We're going to get you out of here."

****

"So, what have you done today, Max?" Liz said, trying her hardest to
play along with Max's game.

"Well, we just told our parents." At Liz's surprised look, he added,
"I mean, we didn't *tell* them. I thought for sure Iz was going to say,
'Yes, I'm the princess and Max is the King of Antar, only there's this
really mean guy named Khivar who killed us in our previous lives and
now he's out to get us again. There's also this short guy named Nicholas,
he looks harmless, but, you know, big things come in small packages.'"

Liz threw a hand over her mouth to stifle a giggle. "I can't picture Iz
saying that somehow."

"Me either. She just said we weren't human; she didn't say what we actually
are. And you know what? Our parents weren't shocked. They acted like
they already knew."

She stilled. "That's actually kind of creepy."

"How do you mean?"

"That...that they knew something was up and they just never mentioned it.
It's weird."

Max gave her a frustrated look. "You might be right, but...this is *not*
a normal conversation. I just want to have a conversation with you for
once that does not involve babies, sex, or the fate of large planets."

Liz smiled genuinely for the first time in a long time, her face lighting
up. "Sounds good to me."

There was a silence. A deep, deafening silence. "So, ah...what do you
want to talk about?" Max asked.

Liz picked up a pillow from the end of her bed and threw it at his head.
"I don't know! See? It's impossible for us to actually have a normal
conversation!"

He looked insulted and picked the pillow up from off the floor where it
had landed. "Sure it's possible."

"Oh really. I don't hear you coming up with a topic."

"I have a topic."

"What's that?"

"Pillows!" Max yelled, and threw the pillow back at her. Liz was so
surprised that she froze for a moment, then tossed it back at him.
He caught it in midair and swatted it back. She caught it against her
chest, picked up her other two pillows and tried to throw them all
at the same time. She quickly realized her error; she no longer had
any ammo. Max grinned, picking up the pillows and raising two of
them into the air.

Liz's eyes widened and she dove for cover, landing on the floor.
Max laughed, and Liz closed her eyes, waiting for the onslaught.

Nothing came. There was silence in the room. She sat up a little
and looked at him through one open eye. "Max?"

"Yes?" he asked, unable to hide the mirth in his voice.

She sat up fully and blinked at him. "Where are the pillows?"

"What pillows?"

Liz got up and walked toward him, inspecting the bed behind him.
"The pillows from my *bed*, Max. You know, the ones I just threw at
your..." her words were cut off as a pillow appeared out of nowhere
and bopped her lightly on the face. "Hey!" she howled. "No fair
using powers!" She started to smack him, accidentally catching a
pillow with her fingernail and slicing through the fabric. Feathery
down flew everywhere, coating her bed and floor in grayish-white fluff.
"Oh, no..." she wailed.

He laughed. "No fair smacking," he said, grabbing her wrists lightly
and pulling her onto his lap.

"No fair being bigger," she breathed, and leaned forward.

Their lips met, the connection between them opening instantly,
pleasure soaring through them both at the lightest touch. Liz moaned
slightly and opened her mouth, allowing Max to penetrate her with his
tongue. He leaned them gently back, onto her bed.

Where they were abruptly and rudely interrupted by a loud knocking
on the door. A man's voice shouted, "Lizzie? What the hell is going
on in there?"



Author's Note: This story is just so great for me. I'm fulfilling all my
little Roswell fantasies. #176...M/L pillow fight. Hehe.