|posted on 9-Sep-2001 1:41:20 PM|
|Title: The Space between Us|
Author: etoile1 aka Eva
Category: M/L, M/M, K/I, future fic
Rating: PG to NC-17
Disclaimer: Roswell is owned by others, if it were mine things would be very different. The lyrics to songs used here belong to the writers of said songs and the musicians, will be identified within text.
Summary: Liz returns to Roswell after an eight year absence, takes place in 2011, ten years after Departure. Read on and leave your awesome feedback!
The Space between Us
Liz stood on her balcony, staring up at the star-filled New Mexico sky. It had been years since she had stopped to look up at the universe. Not that she had ever been able to forget it as much as she may have wanted to. She wondered at the beauty of the night, at the mystery of its boundaries, and the amazing manner it managed to complicate her life. She owed her existence to the stars, more specifically to Max Evans. She wished she could think of him without sentiment and emotion threatening to overpower her. She had finally come back home to Roswell; it had been eight years since she had left without ever stopping to look back. She hoped that her return wouldn’t shake the balance that seemed to have settled over her hometown. She had not returned to cause problems, she had returned to rebuild her life, because she finally felt able to build a life for herself without Max.
But this place, this balcony was full of Max, his presence. As she ran across her hand across the brick wall of her home the heart Max had drawn on Valentine’s Day all those years ago began to glow. Startled she drew her hand back, before angrily slamming her palm against it. The red gleam flickered in surprise and died out completely. Liz was confused about the whole thing, only Max had ever made her wall glow like that. Maybe her eyes were playing tricks on her. Maybe they knew that she wanted to go back to where she’d come from. Go back to before things got complicated.
He was supposed to be out of her life, out of her mind. Max had disappeared here. Right before her eyes. As they danced the wedding dance they would never have. He had taken away all her hope, her chance for happiness. Her faith. The night she had relinquished her future she had lost faith. At times she wondered if she had actually regained it or whether she was living on borrowed hope. The truth was that she and Max could never be together, not in the way she had always hoped they would be. Liz felt the telltale throb of a headache begin to pound. She didn’t need to be thinking about all of this now.
Liz ran her hands through her long silky dark brown hair, before sighing and rubbing her eyes, exhausted from long nights of warring conscience. She had changed her mind many times before deciding to return. She was tired. It had been a long flight back. Tomorrow she would come face to face with the past she had been avoiding. Tomorrow would be the true test of how strong she was, of how accepting she was of the terms that shaped her life. She climbed back into her old room through the window, as she had countless times before. She turned off the lights and got into bed, the silver night lighting the room with memory-threatening shadows.
Liz closed her eyes tightly, she didn’t want to lie awake and remember everything that had gone wrong. She would rather sleep and dream, dream that everything was right.
Max Evans sat at the desk in the tiny office allowed to him by the hospital. A mountain of overdue paperwork lay scattered across the surface of his desk. He had no time to handle the minute detailing of his patient’s files. The sheer number of patients that he saw daily always surprised him.
There was always something going wrong, some hurt, pain that he felt compelled to heal. He was just finishing the first year of his residency in emergency medicine, and while the human way of healing wasn’t nearly as effective as the alien, he loved it just the same. He was an excellent physician, empathetic, and caring, but what really drew his patients to him, was his calm. There was a serenity in Max’s hazel-colored eyes, acceptance, compassion. Even in the hardest cases, children dying of cancer or old men suffering Alzheimer’s, Max never lost his calm. He was strong for his patients; he shed tears for them, his loss of composure only making him a better man.
The years since high school had been filled with change and hardship. In many ways he was more distant and aloof than ever. The only people he talked to, who understood everything about who he was and how he felt were the same people he tried to hold himself away from. Michael, Isabel, Kyle, and Maria were his best friends, but they weren’t Liz. Alone and hurt, his heart still was a jagged wound; the only person who could heal it was as far removed from his life as possible.
He had the day off from the hospital, but was bogged down in overdue paperwork. He decided to spend his free time bringing his charts up to date, he never took any kind of responsibility lightly and this was one of the important yet tedious aspects of a medical career.
Even when Tess’s departure had revealed so much about the dangers they had been facing, how the betrayal, the evil among them was so close. The revelation that she had deceived them all so thoroughly had shocked him. Not only had she killed Alex, one of their best friends, but she had nearly killed Kyle and him. The extent of her mindwarp was revealed to them as time went on. Even now, nearly ten years later he still suffered from the aftereffects. He still felt so guilty for his role in her plan. He had been used, but he had allowed himself to be. He had forgotten what it was that mattered to him. And then he lost it. Liz had left. No explanation. No goodbyes.
The intervening years had them making lives for themselves. As a group they kept close together and met with each other often. Today he was actually looking forward to their usual weekly meeting and dinner. It was nice to escape to the past sometimes. Max picked up the pen lying at his fingertips, and looked over the notes in the file in front of him. The room was silent, interrupted only by the scratching pen and shuffling paper. The stillness of everything was vaguely unsettling; the days in the ER were never so quiet. Max shrugged and decided to relish the calm, he set to work oblivious to all.
Liz pulled into the parking lot behind her father’s café; she had been on the road all day. The research project she had been hired to lead had its headquarters on the campus of The University of New Mexico at Las Cruces, a neighboring town about three hours over. Entering the facilities had brought back so many memories. It was the place where Alex had spent so much time before he died, alone and misunderstood. It had brought back all her anger at Tess, emotions she had thought she had put far behind her.
The clinical laboratory however, reminded her of a very different moment in her life. When she was sure that Max and her were meant to be. The fear she had felt when Agent Pierce had taken him, and what little she knew of his time there with Pierce. Looking back that far into her past had been painful. Knowing that there had been a time in her life during which danger surrounded her at all corners, knowing that she couldn’t take a step without looking over her shoulder had been too much.
Among everything that had happened to tear her away from Max, some of it had been the danger.
She had never recovered after Alex’s murder, and the discovery that Tess had betrayed them all had been too much. It had been easier to cut herself off from the aliens. Their secret had been too much to bear. She couldn’t hide from the world. She had wanted to live in it. It had been selfish of her, but she needed to grow. She needed to go beyond what life in Roswell could offer. She had needed the space to breathe. So she left. No explanations. No goodbyes. She left her heart behind to follow dreams she had long ago crafted.
She had succeeded. To a degree. The research was fascinating. It was what she had always wanted to do with her life. The team was studying the properties of healing. Ever since Max had healed her, she had wondered about it. Knowing that his powers were really human, just advanced several centuries, had always provoked the scientist in her to think of helping evolution along. The new facilities would help a great deal. Especially if she was at home, she could study some of her grandmother’s findings about the Native American community and their mythology in regards to healing and cell regeneration. She knew that her grandmother had left her papers regarding the ties between certain Native American medicinal practices and their system of belief.
If she were honest with herself she would be forced to admit that she had never managed to put Max that far from her thoughts. Even unconsciously she had chosen to work on something that would always remind her of him. Something that would always link them beyond that something that always had.
Placing her forehead against the steering wheel she took a deep breath, coming home hadn’t been easy, and the memories she had refused to deal with for the past eight years were suddenly brought back to the surface. Running a hand through her long black brown hair, she sighed and got out of the car. As she closed the door she was startled by the words "Hello Liz," and turning around she smiled in greeting, unsure of the welcome she would receive.
"It’s been a long time."
"Yeah, what have you been up to? Somehow I always thought that you would have left Roswell, I didn’t expect to see you here," she said.
"It was more important for us to stay together, to stay close. You know that. But you’re right, all I had ever wanted is to be gone."
Liz stood nervously facing Michael. She didn’t know what to do. He had always had this way about him. He both repelled and attracted her at the same time. That had always been one of the great paradoxes of Michael, and though they had never been close, she was genuinely glad to see him.
"Um…do you want to come in Michael? I’ve been out all day so it would be nice to relax in the kitchen and catch up…if you want to that is."
Michael was a little taken aback by Liz’s request, he hadn’t expected her to be happy to see him, but somewhat inexplicably she was. He knew that he had never been particularly nice to her, but he had always appreciated the quiet strength and intelligence she brought to the group. When Liz left he had sincerely missed her, but never figured that the same might apply to him. "Um…sure, why not? You have Tabasco sauce right?"
"I’m sure we do, now do you want chocolate chip chunk or cherry vanilla ice cream with that?"
Laughing they both entered the kitchen of Liz’s father’s alien-themed diner. Walking to the freezer Liz pulled out two pints of Ben & Jerry’s of the promised flavors. Michael made his way to the pantry where he knew the bowls were stored from years of flipping burgers for the "Will Smith Special". After serving themselves two large bowls of ice cream (two scoops of cherry vanilla and chocolate fudge for Liz, three scoops of chocolate chip chunk and a liberal dousing of Tabasco sauce for Michael) they sat down at the counter and ate their snacks in a companionable silence.
"I haven’t seen anyone yet. I only called Maria this morning. Do you think that this will be too weird? I’ve been gone for so long, and at least for me being back seems almost as if I had never left." Liz spoke aloud repeating the words, the worries that cluttered her mind. She needed to talk to someone. And although not a conventional choice, Michael was there, he knew her past, and Liz knew instinctively that no matter what he felt he would be good to her. She had always worried about his feelings for her, she always felt that he hated her; it had taken Liz a long time to realize that Michael cared too much, too deeply and his harsh manner was a form of protecting himself from emotional hurt.
"Hmmm." Michael’s grunt was a typical Michael sort of response. Liz knew him well enough to wait, he would eventually say what he was thinking, and it was only when he was angered that his temper got the best of him and he would run off at the mouth. "Maria’s out of town, with her schedule who knows when she’ll get back. Besides, it’ll probably be hardest on you."
Michael pronouncement, followed with nothing but silence on his part, didn’t surprise Liz. Michael was nothing if not abrupt.
"You’re probably right. I just wish that this were somehow going to be easier than it would be. Michael, would it be too much to ask that you fill me in on what everyone has been up to these past few years? Just, well…I…don’t tell me about the Czechoslovakian stuff.”
Michael paused as he was about to stick a spoonful of ice cream in his mouth. “Czechoslovakian?”
Liz could only smile and nod in response. For the first time recapturing what it had been that she loved about home.
"Ahem. Well yeah. It’s funny how things’ve happened. That I would know the hows and whys. That you would ask me. How we’ve all moved on to different points and yet are still very much the same people we always were."
"It’s not so funny, Michael…and I think we have changed. I think we’ve had to. Listen, if this is too hard or…"
“Don’t worry, I guess it’s just difficult to know what to say. I’m not sure I can say. All I can do is tell you what I’ve been up to. That is, if you want to know."
"Michael, I would love to know what you’ve been doing. I still can’t believe you’re here...I guess I always just assumed that you would find a way out, even when you stayed behind on Earth I still expected you to leave Roswell. It’s surprising to see you still here."
"I know. I’m always so surprised by it myself. It’s even more surprising to know what I do. I’m Roswell’s deputy sheriff."
Liz stared at Michael in shock. The thought of rebel-without-a-cause Michael as an actual officer of the law was mind-boggling. She would have never thought that she would one day be sitting at the counter catching up with Deputy Sheriff Michael Guerin over a bowl of Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia. Liz had no idea what to say. "You’re not joking are you?"
"Nope. Valenti, well, he has been good to me. He helped give me a chance. Somehow it all worked out. God knows that Kyle never wanted to be a police officer. After high school I wasn’t ready for more school, I wanted to be a part of the real world. Valenti offered me a job, and God knows why, I took it."
"Come on, I thought you hated authority figures! I always knew Kyle didn’t want to follow his grandfather and father’s footsteps, but neither did you!"
"Well, I did. Maybe because it was nice to think that I had someone’s footsteps to follow. Besides, I never said I would hate to be a police officer and it has unexpected advantages in keeping our secret under wraps. I’m happy though. I really like my job. I can help people Liz. I always knew I would never help the way Max could, but I still help. It makes me feel good, even about myself. But never mind. Umm, so Liz...do you mind if I ask what's brought you back to Roswell?"
"No of course not. I think you’ve got the right to know, if I can even explain it. I don't know if you know what I’ve been doing since I left. If Maria’s even told you?” Liz glanced down at her bowl of ice cream, as Michael nodded no.
“Sorry. You were always off-limits in all conversations after you left.”
“Yeah…right, well suffice to say that I graduated Brown with a degree in Cellular Biophysics and a minor in Genetic Engineering, which sounds impossible to accomplish and somewhat ridiculous, but believe me I had a lot of time for studying. After graduating I took on a research assignment with a special educational task force, the goal was to make a breakthrough in cellular regeneration in regards to the healing process. We made it pretty far, but the competition has started growing fiercer, there have been a series of serious accidents. That was this past spring. I hated the politics and some of the shady dealings that went on behind the scenes, so I decided to get away from the research fast track. That's when I got the offer to come home.
“It was so tempting; the truth is I wanted nothing more. I know that there is probably no way that this will be easy on any of us, but I belong in Roswell. I thought about it for three months, and agreed to come, I had to finish up a few minor projects I was involved in, but here I am. Home again. Home to stay." Liz looked closely a Michael's face for some sign of what he was thinking, but he was inscrutable as usual. Maria had always hated guessing at his emotions, and during their stormy courtship, there’d been many times he had been, perhaps unfairly, misread.
"Will you come with me to dinner tonight?" Michael asked rather abruptly.
Startled Liz stammered out, "Dinner...why? I mean. I'd love to."
"Everyone will be there. You’re a part of everyone, you should be there."
"Michael, are you sure? I don't—"
"Yes. Now can I have another bowl of ice cream or do I have to start throwing around some weight here?"
All seriousness forgotten, Liz responded teasingly "But what about dinner? Or are you still a growing boy?"
"Hmmm." Michael's grunt only provoked a fit of laughter, and they both got up to go to the kitchen with a lightheartedness they hadn’t felt in years.
I can't help that I love a fictional character...
|posted on 9-Sep-2001 2:24:00 PM|
Max watched Isabel as she paced back and forth across his small office. She was fierce and determined about the things that were important to her. It was no surprise that she had ended up a lawyer—she had a firm sense of morals and ethics that had spelled out a career in justice. But what was most important to Isabel was family and her friends. Social causes and judicial crisis drew her attention, but nothing set her on fire like a threat to someone she loved. Their relationship was often rocky, they never saw eye to eye on certain issues, and knew how to hurt one another in the worst possible way. Something that had often made their arguments harsher and more untenable. But they loved each other deeply, and felt an unwavering loyalty to one another as siblings.
"Max, Max…are you listening? Michael said he was bringing someone, doesn’t that strike you as odd? He called and asked me to change the number of our party to six."
Max shook his head, trying to make sense of Isabel’s agitation. "I don’t see the problem."
"Max, don’t be a dunce. Think of the people who are coming to dinner, think about what we all know. I know it’s silly to worry about this now, after so long. But Michael has always been the most secretive of us all. He is the one who is the last to trust anyone, why would he suddenly bring someone to dinner. It makes no sense." Isabel’s voice shook as she spoke. As she paced she wrung her hands, "Max, this just doesn’t seem like Michael, it makes me edgy. Do you think he found out that some new government agency is on to us? Or maybe he’s discovered something about us? About our home. Or maybe—"
"Isabel, stop! You’ll only make yourself crazy, and drag me along if you keep going. I must say you have quite an imagination big sister. Although, I see what you mean Iz. But it won’t help at all if I were to talk to him; he’s more likely to say less of anything if I did ask. You talk to him Iz, he listens to you." Max stood up from his leather chair, his brow furrowed. He understood now why Isabel was so worked up. Michael had always been the most adamant about keeping themselves apart, holding the world at a distance. It was highly unlikely that this person would be a stranger, but whom else would Michael bring?
"Yeah, but that doesn’t mean he’ll pay attention."
"Listen, I’ve a lot more stuff to get done here. Try to relax. Maybe Michael is just being difficult. I’ll see you tonight. You’re bringing Kyle, right?"
"Yes. Damn! I’m going to be late for when the session reconvenes. There’s something about this case, Max. It worries me. But I’ll see you at dinner, we’ll talk then."
Max watched as Isabel left. He wondered at all that had brought them to the point they were at today. The end of their junior year, he had made one of the biggest mistakes of his life. He thought he had gotten Tess pregnant, and to save their child they’d considered leaving the planet. Life worked in mysterious ways, because Liz, Kyle and Maria had been the ones to figure out that Tess had betrayed them all. He had to let her go back to their home planet to save his son, but it was a decision that had cost him a great deal, especially once he discovered the extent of her deceit.
Knowing that she had purposely set out to destroy their lives, that she had shattered the group to the core, while he had foolishly believed in her, still kept him up at nights. Memories of what he had then thought to be his last night on Earth tormented him. Saying goodbye had cost him everything. Love. Things with Liz hadn’t really ever returned to normal after that.
Along with Isabel and Michael, he had chosen to remain on Earth. He had lost sight of so many things during that time; sometimes he wondered if it was real or not. He wasn't sure if his memories pertained to actual events or to Tess's manipulation of his mind. Her betrayal changed everything for him. His destiny. What he saw and what he believed. Nothing was the same. The dynamics of their group had been altered forever.
That had been after Tess murdered Alex. And after he had lost Liz. Life was so much simpler now. Simpler, but he missed the complications. If he was honest with himself, he missed Liz. Even though he still carried around so much guilt for what had gone on, so much guilt for hurting Liz. Her pain had been unbearable coupled with the loss of Alex, his own betrayal, his sense of loss, and they had lost sight of each other. They had lost touch with the love that they had felt so strongly.
And when Liz left Roswell she had taken a part of him with her. She hadn’t come back. Because of him. And that hurt. He still felt his guilt intensely. Shuffling the papers on his desk into haphazard stacks he sighed and began to read and make occasional notations on the margins of the pages.
Michael had left after the third bowl of Ben & Jerry’s and promised to return in a couple of hours. It had felt so good, reconnecting with someone who had been such an important part of her past. Liz hadn’t asked Michael about Maria, nor had she asked about how he felt. Not that he would have answered her if she had. Michael had always been better at not being pushed.
As she got ready to go out, she questioned her motives. What was really driving her to meeting everyone, friendship or old unforgettable feelings? She wouldn’t go, she decided suddenly. Picking up the phone she started to dial Michael’s number, but as the phone started ringing she heard a tap on her bedroom window. It was Michael. Placing the phone on its receiver, she crossed the bedroom slowly, opening her window to let him in.
"I was just chickening out."
"Not an option Parker. Come on, let’s go. We’re going to be late."
"Michael, are you sure? I’m afraid."
Michael gave Liz a look that said stop-with-the-worrying but merely stated, "Come on. No one is going to eat you."
"Umm…ok, let me grab some shoes." At a loss and still lacking the reassurance she craved, Liz ran to her closet and pulled out a pair of strappy black heels and a black silk lace shawl. She had dressed up for the occasion in a deep red backless halter with a matching long skirt, her long dark hair loosely curled and piled up on her head. The ensemble complemented her coloring and her figure perfectly. Looking her best allowed her to feel better about surprising the group of people she had avoided for the past eight years.
As Michael helped her out the window, he whispered, "You look amazing." in her ear. He had tried to hold back, but realized that it had to be said. He wasn’t afraid of the consequences; he usually never bothered to think about them anyway. He had come to the Crashdown for some coffee and had run into an old friend who also happened to be this gorgeous, sexy, smart woman.
As they stepped out into the heavy summer night, there wasn’t a cloud in the sky; heat was rising in waves from the street. "You’re not looking too shabby yourself,” replied Liz as she watched him with his back to her. He was dressed casually in a button-down shirt and dark slacks, but he look crisp, ready, something that had never been one of Michael’s qualities before.
"Michael, wait…I…why are you taking me?" Liz halted on the edge of her balcony. "I’m afraid to do this. It still hurts. Even thinking about it."
"It’s been a long time Liz."
"I know. But that’s why I ‘m scared. I’ve been away for such a long time…"
Michael glanced around before choosing to sit on the lounge chair that furnished the balcony. He took Liz’s hand in his and led her to the chaise lounge. When they had both taken a seat, Michael surprised Liz by taking her in his arms. Liz surprised herself by letting him. "Let’s just sit here a while, and maybe you’ll tell me what’s bothering you. And then if you want we’ll go on to the restaurant and you’ll dazzle everyone in that dress. And if you just want to sit here all night, then that’s okay too. We can do that."
Michael pressed his arms together slightly to give Liz a hug, to comfort her, to touch her. They had been sitting, clasped close together for what seemed the entire evening, when Michael leaned into Liz and as their gazes met and said into her ear, "See those stars?"
"Yes. Your home." replied Liz.
"No. Not home. My heritage, yes. My past. But Liz, I realized long ago that I wasn’t meant to leave Earth. That clearly I was sent here not to figure out how to get away but to make a life for myself. The day I let go of the idea of home, I found that I already had one. So I started living. It hurt, that day. But I had to let it go."
"Michael." Liz sighed as she leaned back her head and nestled against Michael’s shoulder. "I understand. I’m sorry that you had to let go of a dream. But I’m so glad that you’re here."
"I know. I know you understand. That’s why I’m telling you this. Roswell is where you belong. It’s where you were meant to live, breathe, love. Liz, I don’t pretend to know much of anything. But Roswell is too big a part of who you are for you to even be free without it. Being both human and alien, I realized I couldn’t deny either side of myself if I wanted to be happy and once I accepted that my life became ten times easier." Michael spoke softly, earnest and sincere. He was not usually the type of person to open up to others, with Liz, however, he felt safe. Instinctively knowing that she would neither betray his confidence and she would also understand.
Liz was stunned by the turn of the conversation. Michael had never spoken this many words to her in all the time she had known him before. But his trust in her was, in a way, comforting. Knowing that he understood her struggles helped free her from their burden. Wanting to thank Michael for his goodness to her, she instinctively turned her face to his and lightly brushed her lips with his. She gasped and pulled back, but he held her closer and deepened the kiss gradually. Unexpected passion grew as they twisted into one another on the narrow outdoor seat. "Wait." Liz sat up suddenly. "What was that? I didn’t mean—"
"I’m sorry. I’m not sure what just happened there Liz, but I didn’t mean—" Both Michael and Liz spoke at once, their thoughts flowing through indistinct incoherent paths, searching for a way to make what had happened reasonable.
"Maybe we should just go, Michael. And just pretend this never happened."
"Umm, yeah. Forgotten."
"How do I look?"
Liz smiled. Michael had whispered the word so unwillingly, so sincerely. She felt beautiful. She knew that she could handle whatever happened that night. Later she would wonder about what had happened between Michael and her. "I meant my hair, is it all messy?"
"Yeah." As she walked towards her bedroom, Michael took her arm. "Stay still." He repinned her hair gently, and turned her around to face him. "Perfect. You want to go."
"Yes. I’m still afraid though." Liz smiled at Michael. He had helped. Even when it had made things more complicated. She couldn’t even think about Max or Maria right now. She followed him down the ladder onto the street. He took her hand in his, and led her to his car.
Max had been the first person to arrive at The Golden Bowl, a ritzy Chinese restaurant on the outskirts of town. Off the beaten path and out of place, it was the perfect spot to meet and hold serious discussions about everything that was going on in their lives. He sighed; getting work done had been particularly tedious, especially since he had been updating old charts.
Standing alone in the lavishly decorated vestibule, he took in his surroundings. A red plush carpet led into what appeared to be a Victorian parlor with Chinese accents. The furniture was decorated with silk cloth depicting scenes from Chinese folk tales, garnished with a gold trim. Fanlike palm trees stood in two opposite corners of the room, while ancient Chinese prints with monkeys and elephants hung on the walls. It was at once very eccentric and formal.
"Maria. How are you doing?" Max embraced Maria. She looked amazing in a little black dress out of a forties fashion plate. She wore her hair slightly retro, falling in loose waves past her shoulders and down her back. "I feel as if I haven’t seen you in ages!"
"Fool. You haven’t. That’s why you’re a stranger. If you must know I’ve been out of town for the past three weeks. I actually only just got your message, which reminds me…I got the oddest message from—"
At that moment Kyle Valenti and Isabel Evans walked in through the door accidentally interrupting Maria. Isabel looked sharp in a cherry red skirt suit her hair pulled up in a neat chignon. She was beautiful and aloof; her ethereal beauty lined with the iron strength that was her professionalism. Kyle was also wearing a suit in muted tones of gray. His rugged looks enhanced by his authoritative demeanor.
"Max. Maria. How are you two?" Kyle smiled at them both as he approached. His smile lightened not only his expression, but also the distance that he held himself apart from the world. Having in the group had resulted surprisingly well. He was usually clear-headed and a quick thinker. Always good in critical moments. He was confident and knew how to get things done. He wasn’t a stand-around-with-my-hands-in-my-pockets sort of guy, something that never failed to annoy him when he realized all he was contributing. He hadn’t wanted to know about them, it happened. Since then the aliens had been inextricably entangled in his life.
"Only Michael is missing right?" interjected Isabel.
"Yeah, typical. Plus Michael’s mystery guest, if there really is one." Max added as he clasped Maria’s hand between his. "They should be ready soon, especially since more of the party have arrived. By the way, how was court today, you guys still arguing the Derringer case?"
"Ugh…don’t get us started. You’ll never leave." Isabel said half-seriously. "Do you know if the table is ready Max?"
"Actually I was about to ask the waiter if we could sit, since the majority of our party has arrived." Max walked over to the headwaiter and conversed quietly with him for a few moments. The remainder of the party stood in a slightly uncomfortable silence. Ever since death touched their group they hadn’t been able to find a balance.
Maria and Michael had been a casualty of this. They tried so hard to make their relationship work, but the differences between them had eventually pulled them apart. Michael's struggle to accept his humanity eventually alienated Maria, who couldn't wait forever for him to come to terms with it. Maria had needed to move out, move forward, right at the moment Michael decided he needed stability, he needed to settle down.
Some of the frayed relationships had been rebuilt, but the dynamic was different. Slightly off-center. New relationships replacing the old staples. Kyle and Isabel were an example of that. A mismatch in every way, but they made sense. They were strong individuals and whom the group often overlooked. At first they had found each other’s company irritating, but slowly they formed an alliance. It had worked in their favor, and they began to have more say on what the group decided on. It was ironic that they both studied law, although they often met on opposite sides of the court. Isabel worked with her father’s exclusive firm, while Kyle was a county prosecutor. They were always arguing. But they understood one another. Everything seemed to lie out in the open between them.
Max nodded his head slightly at Maria, who called to Kyle and Isabel. They all followed the young waiter that ushered them to a table in a secluded corner. This meeting seemed oddly formal, and they were all uncomfortable, as if something else lay beneath the reasons for this dinner party. They seated themselves and remained in a taut silence interrupted only by the waiter’s query for drinks. The group sat as one, on the edges of their seats, waiting for something completely unexpected and anticipated just the same. The two empty chairs the focus of all their stares and energy.
I can't help that I love a fictional character...
|posted on 9-Sep-2001 2:24:49 PM|
Michael and Liz arrived at the Golden Bowl only half an hour later than they were supposed to. As they pulled up into the parking lot, both experienced a rush of anxiety flittering down their spine, unsettling their stomachs. They had held hands the entire way, needing the physical contact to soothe their roiling emotions. So much had already gone on between them that facing the others would be a test of nonchalance. Tension draped the air, deadened the silence, and forced strained smiles on their faces as they entered the restaurant. They made their way through the tables to the secluded corner that belonged to them and to the rest of the party.
Liz hung back a little, hiding her small frame behind Michael’s. She had caught a glimpse of Max and Maria, and couldn’t handle the guilt she felt. Taking a deep breath, she pulled into herself, centering, balancing herself before she moved away from Michael, clear into Max’s line of sight. As the rest of the group was caught up with alternately scolding Michael and welcoming him, they failed to notice the drama unfolding in front of them.
"Hello Max. How are you? You look good," said Liz in greeting as she walked up to Max.
"Liz. What…hi…um…what are you doing here?" Max managed to stutter incoherently.
"Michael brought me."
"Yeah, but when did you get back? I thought you—"
"Lizzie! Oh my God! I got your message today, and I couldn’t believe it. I thought that something was going on or something. But you’re here!" Maria stood up and gave Liz an effusive hug. Chattering a mile a minute, as Maria was wont to do when truly excited by something, Liz couldn’t get a word in. She smiled and hugged Maria back fiercely, she had missed her best friend so much. Seeing her again brought back memories of good times, important moments.
"Maria. I've missed you so much. I can't wait to sit with you and talk. About everything." Liz knew Maria would understand her unspoken request for a little space. They would have enough time to talk over things in depth later. Maria gave Liz a quick hug before seating herself next to Michael without speaking. She was dying of curiosity as to why Liz and Michael had arrived together, but figured that she wouldn't have to ask for explanations. Liz would tell her all she needed to know. Later.
Kyle also stood and gave Liz a hug. They had bonded over the fact that they had both been healed and possibly changed forever by Max Evans. Their previous involvement and issues giving way to the more pressing concerns of protecting the aliens. Liz would be eternally grateful for Kyle’s willingness to help her, his actions being honorable and decent during one of the most difficult moments of her life. “Liz, are you back for good?”
Liz nodded in reply while smiling at Kyle. She had truly grown to appreciate Kyle for the wonderful friend he was. On occasion exchanging emails with him and keeping in touch. But she had hidden the fact of her return from everyone. Even her parents hadn’t known, until the last moment, she had been so sure she’d change her mind.
“I can’t believe you kept it such a big secret. And then Michael making his mystery guest announcement. I never thought it might be you. Hey Michael, why didn’t you say anything? Isabel was driving me crazy about whom you might or might not be bringing on our way over!” Kyle quizzed Michael teasingly.
Michael had been watching everything warily, he was afraid backlash might come his way. He still didn't understand what had happened with Liz on her balcony; he had only ever opened up like that to Maria. He hadn't realized how much he missed her. Kyle’s question caught him off-guard, he didn’t quite know how to answer it. So much seemed to be going on.
“Uh, well I ran into Liz earlier today…you know, at the Crashdown and invited her, but um…I kept thinking she might back out...so I didn’t want to say anything till I was sure.”
“I almost did…back out I mean. In fact, had Michael arrived any later, I probably wouldn’t be here.” Liz made a valiant attempt to come to Michael’s rescue, but she inadvertently set herself in the line of fire.
“Why not?” asked Maria. Slightly hurt, that it had been Michael who had brought Liz back to the group. It should have been her. Or Max. But not Michael, most of the time he had been mean to Liz.
“Guys, let them at least sit down before cross examination!” Isabel stood up from her seat and gave Michael a quick kiss on the cheek and a fraternal hug, before moving on to give Liz a warm welcome back sort of hug.
Liz was surprised at Isabel’s welcome; they had never been particularly close. But Liz appreciated her intervention on Michael and her behalf, and took advantage of the moment to settle herself in a seat between Michael and Kyle. She wanted to keep her distance from Max. At least until she figured out what she was feeling. Which at the moment she was pretty sure was overwhelmed.
The waiter came by and rattled off the specials as soon as they had all taken their seats. After completing their order, the six of them sat in a silence broken only by the sound of their fidgeting. Liz was trying desperately to avoid eye contact with Max who was seated directly in front of her, while Max was trying to find the balance he had lost unexpectedly when he saw the object of his million fantasies walk into back into his life without fading away, as most fantasies tend to do. The tension that draped the table was finally interrupted by Maria, who was known for only taking so much silence.
“Lizzie, why didn’t you tell us you were coming? I’ve missed you like crazy and you sneak back into our lives without warning? What’s going on? What brought you back?”
“Geez, Maria. You don’t waste any time.” Liz sighed. It was probably easier this way, to give her explanation once with the entire group there, instead of individually. Besides, she knew without a doubt that Michael and Kyle would rescue her should she need it. “I wasn’t sure myself until I got on the plane, you see, I got this amazing offer to lead a research team at Las Cruces. But you know more than anyone how much that place affects me. I was getting back from a meeting with the department heads when I ran into Michael. He asked me to come.”
At that Isabel turned to Michael and asked, “Why all the mystery? Why didn’t you tell us it was Liz?”
Michael spoke up rather grudgingly. He really didn’t want to think of what happened earlier this evening. “I wasn’t sure she’d come. I didn’t want Maxwell’s hopes raised for nothing.”
“I almost didn’t. That’s why we were late. Michael was convincing me.”
At Liz’s words Kyle let out a snicker. Isabel discreetly nudged him with her elbow. Causing him to vocalize, “What? He isn’t known for his salesmanship?!” Michael merely glared, while a faint blush tinged Liz’s cheeks as she recalled what the convincing had involved.
Max had been silent throughout this discussion. Watching Liz closely, intently, without letting her see how much he felt upon seeing her. It was as if all these years he had been living without air, and her presence let him breathe easy once more. She looked beautiful. She had changed without being overtly different. The small nuances of confidence. A sense of purpose that had always been there only now it was clear. The aura of intelligence and vulnerability. What made Liz, Liz was still there only heightened, strengthened. She seemed more her own person than she ever had before. Sexier than all hell. But also more fragile, as if the slightest thing could shatter her. She was still a mix of paradox and straightforwardness. She still fascinated him.
Max watched as Michael and Liz glanced at each other with uncomfortable smiles on their faces before looking away. There seemed to be some shared experience, something they were both afraid of lying on the table between them. The good-natured ribbing had continued, but both Michael and Liz seemed surprisingly bothered by it.
Liz finally had changed the subject to dwell on someone other than herself. Although she has of course remained close to Maria, over the years their lives had grown further apart from each other, and when they spoke it rarely involved the what am I doing and what are you doing sort of conversations but more of the this is how I’m feeling sort. Maria was involved in a lengthy explanation of her music. She had ultimately taken on with The Whits, Alex’s band. They had needed someone to guide them and she had been more than willing, the first album they cut had seen moderate success in the mass market, with some critical acclaim. But it was their sophomore effort that Maria was sure would succeed that currently occupied all her time, a special tribute to Alex now that ten years had passed since his death. Sometimes she felt it was remarkable they had all made it this far without him. “Although sometimes I just feel as guilty, you know for just sort of taking over, taking his place.”
“Maria, you know that he would be so proud. He loved you, and he wanted you to succeed, in a way you are making it happen for the both of you.”
“Thanks, Lizzie. I needed to hear that.” Maria smiled at her best friend. It was so good to finally have her back in the fold. Without her they had always seemed off.
Isabel transitioned the subject into the case Kyle and her were currently arguing in court. It was one of the reasons the meeting tonight was taking place. It was also very hard for her to discuss Alex, he had been her first love and the needless way she had lost him still upset her. “I don’t know what it is that bothers me, Max. But both Kyle and I have reservations, it’s almost as if they are trying to trap us into something.”
“Yeah, also they’ve always avoided pitting us one against the other. They know we live together, also this case is ridiculously important to the government, and I’m only an ADA. It’s a big deal that I was assigned to it, even bigger that I am team leader, but it makes no sense. I’m good, but I don’t have the years under my belt that would merit this.” Kyle added.
“Okay, but what specifically is this about that has you both bouncing off the walls?” asked Max with a perplexed frown. Kyle and Isabel were right; it was odd that they had both been assigned to an important case for the federal government. But they still hadn’t mentioned anything concretely worrisome, and he refused to do anything without knowing all the facts. After he had almost killed the innocent girl he thought had killed Alex, only to discover that the person he had been placing the most trust in was behind that terrible act, he never jumped to conclusions.
“Well, without completely blowing the case, I’ll go into as much detail as I possibly can. I’m working with the FBI to acquire some document or some evidence they claim Samuel Derringer has in his possession or on his property. Derringer’s estate lies 75 miles due west of the crash site and 75 miles north-northwest of the Indian Reservation. In 1983 there was some work being done to ameliorate the septic system and drainage on the estate, after substantial digging there were claims of important findings regarding the existence of extraterrestrial life forms. But when these findings were reported to the government by 1984, there was no such evidence. Currently they are suing Derringer with fraud and/or espionage.”
“That’s the government’s side of the story. According to Derringer, there was never any such dig, and he is the scapegoat and target of the FBI for some unknown reason.” Isabel added at the end of Kyle’s narrative.
“Well, Maxwell, what are we going to do about this?” asked Michael, ever ready to take action. “I can run a background check through the police database on any persons pertinent to the case—“
“Not here. Not now. I need to think about this. I don’t even know what this is really about.” interrupted Max. “Although go ahead with the check, get the names from Kyle and Iz. Once we have that we’ll work at piecing together what we know, and maybe actually visit the Derringer estate. But I want tonight to be about Liz. Because she’s finally back among us.”
Max looked around the table, expecting to see some sign of protest. Surprised to find that no one was upset by his command. Michael’s acquiescence struck Max as particularly odd, but then again everything had been odd with Michael tonight. But he wanted the remainder of the evening to celebrate Liz’s presence. He had yet to speak to her, there was so much he wanted to say. He didn’t even know where to begin. Slowly he raised his glass of sparkling water, “Here’s to you Liz. Welcome back.”
The others raised their glasses as well as Liz blushed to the toast. She hadn’t expected to feel so welcomed by the group. They were all so glad she was there with them. Where she had expected resistance she had found none, where she had expected questions she had found only acceptance. Liz looked around the table and realized that for the first time in eight years she finally felt she was home.
As the group sat laughing around the table at anecdotes from the past few years, catching up on their lives and the most important moments in them. Kyle grasped Isabel’s hand underneath the table. They had been living together for the past few years. They had been roommates through law school and their relationship had slowly developed from a distant camaraderie to something more meaningful. Something they had never attempted to define or discuss. Kyle was more likely to spout words of wisdom from Buddha, whom Isabel insisted on calling the fat little bald man, instead of expressing his emotions. And Isabel needed to keep up her façade; she was the Ice Princess par excellence.
They were different. Yet they were the same. They had both lost so much. Tess had not only destroyed Kyle's trust in others, but she had willfully killed Alex, Isabel's first love. They were fiercely loyal to their families and friends. Bright and smart, not only about school, but also about life, about people. They weren’t an obvious match. They never would be. But things between them worked. In their own way.
When Isabel had lost Alex, the first person she had ever let close to her, she didn't know how to handle it. His death had caused her enormous grief; she still felt such sorrow whenever she thought of him. The smallest things would remind her of him, and she often felt his teasing and soothing presence whenever she truly needed a friend. As for Kyle, he had lost a sister. Living with Tess, having her in his home, in his life, she injected some much-needed emotion into the stilted bachelor household he shared with his father. Knowing that she had not only betrayed his trust, but the trust of those closest to him had hurt him deeply. It was only with Isabel’s help that he had eased his way back into trusting others, but it had been a difficult process.
~~You cannot quit me so quickly
Is no hope in you for me~~
"They're playing our song Iz." Holding out his hand, his eyes smoldering with promise, Kyle smiled at Isabel.
Isabel allowed herself to be led out onto the dance floor as she listened to the incredibly heartfelt lyrics of the song. ~~No corner you could squeeze me, but I’ve got all the time for you love.~~ As she rested her head on Kyle's shoulder, her knees bent adjusting their heights to a perfect fit, she thought about how lucky she had been to encounter not one, but two people who could love and understand her so completely.
~~The space between
The tears we cry is the laughter that keeps us coming back for more
The space between
The wicked lies we tell to keep us safe from the pain~~
Kyle breathed in the scent of Isabel's shampoo--melon laced with roses, a fruity flowery smell that he would always associate with her. He was caught. And he knew it. All the time he spent denying what he felt. Squashing his love just because he couldn't trust himself to love another alien. Tess had robbed him of his faith in others completely. And after all this time Isabel had given him a gift of it. They had never spoken of their feelings for one another. They took what came their way without expressing what went on in their heads, in their hearts. He loved her. Unquestionably. Undeniably. And he had never told her.
~~These fickle fuddled words confuse me
Like will it rain today
We waste the hours with talking talking
These twisted games we’re playing~~
"This is stupid." Kyle whispered in Isabel's ear as he nuzzled it with his lips.
"Mmmm. What is?" She replied.
"I love you."
Isabel took a sharp breath, out of all the things Kyle could have said to her, out of all the moments he could have chosen to say it, somehow he had made it perfect. With that realization came another, much more frightening because she couldn't contain it, she couldn't help herself.
"I love you too." She whispered.
I can't help that I love a fictional character...
|posted on 9-Sep-2001 2:26:44 PM|
Max turned to Liz as soon as Kyle and Isabel stood up to dance. He opened his mouth as if to speak but realized he didn’t know what to say. He felt so much. He knew so little of her life now. They were strangers by circumstance. And yet Max was sure he would know Liz anywhere. He would always recognize her soul. Wordlessly he held out his hand. She took it. Together they made their way to the center of the dance floor--the most public and private of places. They didn't speak. Their bodies moved as one to the music.
~~Will I hold you again~~
Max couldn't believe he was holding Liz Parker in his arms after so many years of longing to do so. Feeling her smooth skin, clasping her body tight against his, he was reminded of the dance that they shared when they went to Las Vegas. The time he had the vision of twirling Liz around in her wedding dress, on their wedding day. It was amazing to think of how little his feelings had changed since then. He still loved her. He wondered what she was thinking. Her dark eyes were closed and she had placed her head close to where his heart lay beating. His hands rested against the warmth at the small of her back, while her hands moved up his muscled arms to play with the hair that curled at the base of his neck. He shivered. She trembled. And they turned and spun to the haunting melodic notes of song.
~~We’re strange allies
With warring hearts~~
Still they didn't know what to say to each other.
Liz was struck by how effortless it was to be held by Max. How easy it was to believe in the love they felt again. He was her soulmate. That was the only thing she knew without a doubt. What had happened on her balcony with Michael was something she couldn't explain.
She wondered if Max could tell that she was hiding something. She wondered how Max would feel if she told him. Maybe he didn't need to know. ~~The space between, Where you smile and hide, That’s where you’ll find me if I get to go~~ Michael had been offering comfort. He had been there when she needed it. She loved him, but not the way she loved Max.
The way she had always loved Max. ~~The rain that falls, Splashed in your heart, Ran like sadness down the window into your room~~ Max was the other half of her soul. She couldn't deny that any more.
The past eight years she had been trying so hard to forget about Max, she had forgotten the reason she felt anything about him in the first place. ~~Take my hand, Cause we’re walking out of here, Right out of here, Is all we need deShe realized that her reasons for returning weren't to build a life without Max, but to see if there was any remaining chance of building a life with him.
Liz held on to Max, held him closer and tighter than she had ever thought to. She wasn't about to let go. Not this time. No matter what anyone said. The truth was that they were meant to be. ~~The space between, Your heart and mind, Is the space we’ll fill with time~~ All she had to figure out now was how Max felt about her. She knew that she had hurt him terribly when she had left Roswell. She had run away from him, from everything that they had meant to each other.
She had long ago forgiven him for all the hurt she had suffered during high school; she had also hurt him. She wondered if he could forgive her, if he could forgive her lack of trust in him, in their love. ~~The space between, The tears we cry is the laughter keeps us coming back for more, The space between, Our wicked lies where we hope to keep safe from pain~~ The truth was she couldn’t forgive herself. She would never forgive herself if he was lost to her forever. She could hear his heart beating and she knew it was in time with hers. They were still connected. They would always be connected.
When Max Evans had saved her life that day in the Crashdown, he had made it impossible for them to ever truly sever their ties. She had been pretending for the last eight years. She had never forgotten Max. She had learned how to breathe without seeing him, how to smile without needing him, how to exist without touching him, but she couldn’t live without him. She was a part of him. He had brought her back to life. Her blood was his. ~~The space between~~ The space she had tried to drive between them, the distance she had managed to wedge between their souls was meaningless.
Because all she had to do was be in the same room with him and the years melted away as if they had never existed. Timeless, their love was timeless, it would span galaxies if it needed to, and there was nothing that would break it. They had already betrayed each other in the worst possible ways, and still their love survived, it had lived on just as strongly in her heart. They were connected, they would always be connected, the question was whether or not to keep fighting the connection.
“Come on Maria.”
“Michael, it’s okay. We can sit. I know you hate dancing. You don’t have to make the sacrifice and proceed to torture us both for the duration of the song.” Maria tapped her fingers against the table on an absent rhythm as she hummed the opening bars to the song. Michael watched her silently. Maria had her own special brand of sauciness, of sarcasm. She was the only person who would always called him on his ass, and never let him off easy. He wondered how much it would take for them to find their way back to one another. He had found a home in her. It was her wanderlust and his failure to understand it that had torn them apart before. Maybe now there would be a way to compromise now that she was back in Roswell. Maybe now he had realized how much he disliked living without her.
~~No corner you could squeeze me
But I’ve got all the time for you love~~
Michael knew that she wanted to avoid close contact with him. But he wouldn’t let her escape him that easily. “Maria. You love Dave Matthew’s Band, and this is a classic. We’re dancing. Because you want to. Because I want to.” Michael stood up, holding Maria’s hand in his.
Maria resisted a little. She gave Michael a measuring look. She considered summarily rejecting his heavy-handed invitation. But the scene he would make, and she really did want to dance. With Michael. So she allowed herself to be led out onto to the dance floor. ~~We’re strange allies, With warring hearts, What a wild-eyed beast you be~~
Max and Liz were in the center of the floor lost in their own world. Kyle and Isabel looked as if they were having a moment. A dozen other couples spun back and forth in her line of vision, the music, the lighting, and the dancers all flitting around like shadows off a movie screen reminded her of the last time Michael danced with her, the last time her friends were all together as a group. Many years later and a few people less, Maria realized that they still were the same people who had forged an incredible bond all those years ago. That no matter how complicated things had become the love between them all was still there was just as strong.
~~Look at us spinning out in the madness of a rollercoaster
You know you went off like the devil in the church
In the middle of a crowded room
All we can do my love
Is hope we don’t take this ship down~~
Michael knew that tonight was probably the last chance he would ever have to mend this thing he had with Maria. He had to prove to her that he was ready. That he was willing. He only wished he knew how to do so. Speaking wasn’t his forte. He had to show her. He had to act. But what was the right way. How would he know what would make things right for them.
He held her so closely. She was small and fragile in his arms. Her vulnerability hidden beneath those layers of sauciness was one of the things that drew him to her. ~~The space between, The bullets in our fire fight, Is where I’ll be hiding waiting for you~~ Michael couldn’t lose Maria.
Even though he had already lost her. They were so far apart from where they had once been. He needed to erase years, hours and minutes of lost time.
He needed to find a way to get back to the Maria and Michael that had existed and loved each other in high school. The Michael and Maria that had known and understood and needed to share that love. ~~The space between, What’s wrong and right, Is where you’ll find me hiding, Waiting for you~~ And then it dawned on him. Memories of the night he had thought to leave Earth and Maria behind, the night that Maria and he had first made love. All he had to do was show her that she meant as much to him now as she did then. She would have to understand then. There was no way she couldn’t.
~~The space between
The tears we cry is the laughter keeps us coming back for more
The space between
Our wicked lies where we hope to keep safe from pain~~
Michael brought his hands up to Maria’s face. Not missing a step he slowly caressed her cheeks before running his thumb across her lips parted in surprise. He gazed straight into her eyes. Never blinking, not shying away, but staring deep inside, unlocking the doors to the secrets between himself and Maria. He had to reveal everything. How much she meant to him. How she was his life. It would be the most singularly terrifying thing he would ever do. But hopefully he would always hold Maria in his arms. Forever.
~~The space between
The space between~~
The song ended. And the floor crowded with couples of every sort, the only link between them all was the intensity of feeling. One heartbeat, a sigh in the dark, a whisper of petals across skin, the silken threads of a cobweb, of love, of passion, of emotion, uniting them all. Some of the couples left the dance floor, and left the romance behind to settle into the everyday mundanity of their lives together. Others left the dance floor and went home, where their romance continued or died in its own time, on their own terms. A few lingered with the last notes of song. Hanging on to the moment. Hoping that the feelings, the romance of it would last forever. Kyle and Isabel, Max and Liz, and Michael and Maria all lingered. The music of another song, Dido’s “Here With Me”, just as slow, just as haunting, slowly swelled among them, among their hearts. Without skipping a step, they spun together, they held on fast to each other; they closed their eyes and lost themselves in the moment.
~~I didn't hear you leave,
I wonder how am I still here
I don't want to move a thing,
it might change my memory~~
Their hearts soared along with the music. The lyrics rushing over them. The lights circling in a patterned loop around the room. Surrounding them all in mystery, romance, and passion.
~~Oh I am what I am
I'll do what I want
But I can't hide
I won't go
I won't sleep
I can't breathe
Until you're resting here with me
I won't leave
I can't hide
I cannot be
Until you're resting here with me~~
Tightly they hung on to one another. They held each other, hoping never to let go of the love in their grasp.
~~I don't want to call my friends,
they might wake me from this dream
And I can't leave this bed,
risk forgetting all that's been~~
They were all there. Their hearts beatng in time to each other. Their love running through every cell in their body. for the first time they lived.
~~Oh I am what I am
I'll do what I want
But I can't hide
I won't go
I won't sleep
I can't breathe
Until you're resting here with me
I won't leave
I can't hide
I cannot be
Until you're resting here with me.~~
They loved. That was their dance. Love was the point of it all.
I can't help that I love a fictional character...
Edited by - etoile1 on 09/10/2001 15:08:05
|posted on 9-Sep-2001 2:28:05 PM|
Kyle and Isabel stayed until the music faded into silence. Without speaking they both left the dance floor, their fingers intertwined in their grasp. Without saying goodbye to the others they left money for their part of the meal on the table and left the Golden Bowl behind. They were going home. Their apartment was farther from the town than the Golden Bowl. It had been a convenient location for their long commute to law school, and they liked the privacy being far from the center of town could afford. They had already spent so much time being the center of everyone’s attention.
The drive home lacked words Kyle stared intently into the distance as he drove, while Isabel looked up at the stars outside her window. The tension between them grew, until the silence was heavy, thick enough to cut.
“Can you see Aries?” asked Kyle.
“Hmmm? What? Oh. I don’t know I wasn’t really looking.”
“Oh. So, anyway…what do you think about Liz’s return. That’s major isn’t it?”
“Why should you care Kyle? Are you interested?”
“Whoa, Isabel. No. Christ. I just meant. You know. It’s a big deal for Max. Even I know that all he has ever wanted was for Liz to come back to him. And I wish him the best. He obviously needs her.” Kyle was surprised. It wasn’t like Isabel to be so uncertain or jealous. And he had just told her how he felt, she couldn’t be doubting it already. It had been a mistake. What could he have been thinking. Everything had been good between them. Working well. And now, now it was all ruined.
“Oh.” Isabel frowned, scrunching her eyebrows at the darkness surrounding the car. Without turning her head towards Kyle, she asked softly: “Do you need her?”
Kyle’s hands clenched the steering wheel compulsively. He couldn’t believe that Isabel would think such a thing. It had been many years since high school, and Liz and him had dated for such a small fraction of that time. But that she was jealous or that she was worried about his feelings toward Liz, maybe that was a good thing. Liz and him had merely remained good friends, the way he felt about Isabel was something utterly special. “Iz. Listen, what I said. You know. On the dance floor. I meant that. Every word.”
Isabel sighed. She didn’t know if it was relief. Or if she was just letting out the breath that she hadn’t even known she was holding. But hearing Kyle reaffirm his feelings made her feel safe. She hadn’t even realized she had been so afraid. Isabel may have been one of the hottest girls in high school, but growing up alien had always made her feel completely vulnerable when her heart was involved. Alex had been the first person to ever see her as she was, and then Kyle. At first they had just been buddies of a sort. Then they were just part of the In-crowd. Then it was special. It was good to know he felt that it was. “Good. Michael and Maria looked like they are heading towards a reconciliation.”
“Yeah. I noticed that too. Does that bother you? Destiny considered.”
“Kyle. You know that we renounced the whole destiny thing so long ago. And besides. I also meant what I said back there.”
Kyle’s grip loosened on the steering wheel. He hadn’t even noticed how tightly he had been grasping it, his knuckles whitened, the skin stretched tightly across them. “Hey Iz.”
“Mmmm?” responded Isabel as she absently leaned her head against the windowpane, twirling a strand of hair between her fingers.
“About that stuff we said while we were dancing?”
“What about it?” Asked Isabel as she sat straight up, almost afraid, in fact, terrified.
“Well…are we…hmmm…I wondered if…um. Well how do you like my bedroom?”
“Your bedroom? It’s fine. I guess. For a former jock and frat boy. It’s very dorm chic.” Isabel laughed to herself.
“Oh. Yeah. Okay, well then I guess I should redecorate. Maybe I should sleep in your room for the time being then. See how I like the…what is your room’s look exactly?” Kyle barely managed to stammer out the sentence. He felt like the biggest dork on the planet. For all his reputation as a ladies man, he really needed help with the propositioning.
Isabel thought about the dark blacks and reds of her bedspread. And the framed photographs of her family on the walls painted black with red sponge flourishes. “Um. Alien princess chic?” she said laughingly. She had already figured out what it was that Kyle was getting at, but she felt it was her duty to torture him a bit more with it.
“Right then. Well I can honestly say that I like that look. A lot.” Kyle shot a sideways glance at Isabel, the hint of promise shimmering in his eyes.
“Hey watch the road or you’ll miss our turn off. And then you’ll be sleeping on the floor!”
Kyle turned the car onto their small driveway. The laughter that they had been sharing suddenly quieted. He had kissed Isabel before. He had fooled around with her before, but never had it meant so much as it did tonight. Tonight he wanted to make love to her. Cherish every single inch of her. And she wanted him just as deeply. Just as badly. He knew it. As he knew other things.
He unbuckled his seatbelt and watched Isabel as she undid hers. He got out of the car and walked around it, meeting her at the other side. Taking hold of her he laced his right hand through her long, tapered fingers and turned to look at her. She was breathtaking. Slowly he raised his left hand to the curve of her cheek, tracing his thumb lightly over her smooth skin. Ever so slightly he leaned forward pushing himself upward on the balls of his feet and touched her lips with his.
Isabel closed her eyes and she leaned down into Kyle. The way they knew each other was so heart-warming, the care he took to make sure she was all right made her feel that all was right. She deepened the kiss, slipping her tongue between the fullness of his lips, running it across his teeth, darting around his tongue. The passion she was feeling grew to a heated intensity, she needed Kyle. She wanted him, right then, right there.
Kyle broke away from the kiss with a quick laugh. Looking at Isabel under heavy lidded eyes, he asked. “Iz, don’t you think we should take this inside? The neighbor’s might complain.”
“Hmmm. Right. Oh, but Kyle hurry up and get the damn door open.” Replied Isabel rather grumpily as she watched as Kyle fumbled around for the correct key. As soon as they had both entered the apartment Isabel waited only for Kyle to close the front door behind him before slamming him into it. Hungrily she devoured his mouth, claiming it as hers.
Kyle was momentarily stunned by Isabel’s aggressiveness, but quickly recovered. Holding her head between his hands he began removing the pins that had been holding it up. The strands falling like cornsilk between his fingers. Moving his hands down her neck, he softly massaged her tense muscles, eliciting a moan from deep within Isabel’s throat as she moved back slightly to unbutton Kyle’s shirt. Kyle moved his hands down farther, cupping Isabel’s generous breasts through the flimsy fabric of her blouse, before also unbuttoning her clothing.
Pushing away from the door, Kyle and Isabel made their way into the living room, dropping clothing haphazardly throughout the hallway never releasing each other from their kiss. The living room was sparsely decorated, the only furniture being two butterfly chairs, a coffee table, and the entertainment center. It had been Kyle’s job to decorate, and his essentials were not exactly in tune with an interior decorator’s. After removing all their clothing Kyle stopped their frantic kiss, to take the sight of a naked Isabel in completely.
Not usually shy, Isabel blushed, pale pink flushing over her entire body as Kyle smiled appreciatively. Seeking a distraction Isabel noticed the absence of lighting in the room and set about lighting the decorative candles she had long ago placed on the coffee table. Kyle took a seat in the butterfly chair, and as Isabel walked towards him, she grinned in anticipation of the exquisite torture she was about to put him through.
The candlelight bathed their bodies in its golden glow. Kyle watched with a dry mouth as Isabel walked towards him, her eyes taking him in and glittering with promise. As his erection swelled in response, he groaned as she knelt before him.
“Let me.” She whispered in his ear before tracing its edges with her wet tongue and nibbling on his earlobe. Isabel alternately kissed and suckled her way down Kyle’s neck, paying special attention to where his pulse throbbed in a rapid rhythm. Her hands roamed over Kyle’s chest, his muscles tensed, his nipples hardened in expectation of Isabel’s onslaught of sensuality as her full breasts pressed against him. Raking her nails across Kyle’s sensitive skin she sunk lower on her knees to capture one of his nubbins in a harsh kiss and began suckling it.
Kyle’s hands had been caressing her back, her breasts, her shoulders suddenly tangled themselves in her thick lustrous hair as he arched his back slightly to give her more access to his body. Isabel lavished attention on both his nipples before continuing her journey downward, she licked and kissed the expanse of skin of Kyle’s abdomen, whirling her tongue in his navel. Smiling as his cock jumped in response. Finally she reached her destination.
Reaching between their bodies, Isabel tickled Kyle lightly at the base of his testicles. Pressing a chaste closemouthed kiss on the bulbous tip of his cock before opening her mouth and sucking him in. Her tongue swirled around the smooth skin as she followed a rhythm guided by Kyle’s hands in her hair. Up and down she sucked and rubbed until Kyle abruptly pulled her up against him, pressing a heated kiss on her lips. “I want us to come together.” He ground out.
Isabel was touched and nodded in acquiescence. Putting a finger to his lips she said, “I’m ready now, later you can do what you will, but I want to do this now.” Kyle silently agreed as he took her finger in his mouth.
Grabbing the foil packet he had conveniently remembered to place beneath him on the chair he opened it and rolled the condom onto his protruding shaft. Replacing her finger with her tongue Isabel slowly lowered herself onto Kyle’s erection groaning as he filled the void she had always felt completely. Together they began to move, thrusting their hips in a way that guaranteed everything they had been waiting for. Isabel felt the tension growing inside of her, like an energy source that needed to be released somehow, and as Kyle surged upwards in one powerful movement she lost all control. Together they climaxed, shaking and shivering in each other’s arms.
When they had finally calmed down some. Kyle looked deeply into Isabel’s eyes and smiled at the satisfaction he saw in them.
“I never knew.” He whispered.
“Never knew what?”
“That you would feel so good. And that these chairs would…um support this kind of activity.”
Isabel shook with silent laughter. Nestling her head on his shoulder she sighed. “I love you.” She murmured in his ear.
“So do I, Iz, so do I.”
Michael and Maria held each other closer than they ever had. His hands tangled in the riotous curls that draped her back. Her head nestled in the perfect place on his shoulder. Both felt transported through time to the best moments of their relationship. Michael knew that this was his last chance of fighting for Maria. If this dance ended and he stayed stuck, then there would be no future for them. He had to prove to her that he still felt she was his home as strongly as he did that morning so many years ago.
He kissed her. Without thought. Without warning. Without erecting any of the barriers he was so famous for. And she saw everything. Just as she shared everything. Maria had always been open. He was the one who preferred to remain closed. But he didn’t this kiss.
Maria pulled away suddenly as if she had been struck. Her face a mix of hurt and shock and anger. She did nothing to Michael. Only left him alone on the dance floor. By the time he had a chance to react, she had gotten into her car and sped off away from the parking lot. Michael ran back inside to leave money on the table with a note asking Max to take Liz home. He knew she wouldn’t mind. They both would fight tonight for their hearts.
He realized suddenly that Maria must have seen the kiss he shared with Liz. Or rather the kisses he had shared with Liz. He wondered how Max would react. He wondered what Liz would say to him.
He had no idea about how to explain what had happened. And he didn’t think she did either. It had just happened. Michael ran a hand through his unruly hair. No matter what he did it was never combed. He had to get to Maria. He had to tell her. That she was the one. The only one for him.
As Michael drove back into town, he wondered where he would find Maria. He swung by her apartment but saw no sign of her car on the street. He checked Valenti’s place, her mom had moved in soon after Kyle had left home. He thought of the Crashdown, but thought it wasn’t likely considering it was his kiss with Liz that had upset her. Finally it occurred to him to check the fountain in the park. She liked to go there and think. After Alex had died she had often spent time alone there. Remembering.
He parked right behind her car, and slowly made his way towards the fountain. He didn’t want to frighten her. She looked beautiful. Bathed in moonlight. Tears shimmering across her cheeks. Her eyes seemed to glow. Anger simmered. Sadness lingered. She didn’t turn away when she saw him. She stood as if frozen.
“Michael! Not a word. God! How could you? It was hard enough to deal with those visions of you and Isabel with a baby, but kissing Liz. She’s my best friend Michael. Why would you have visions with her? Why? Isn’t Max like your brother? Don’t I matter to you at all?” Maria waved her hands at him, before breaking down. When he moved to put his arms around her she shrugged him off. She didn’t want any part of him touching her. She didn’t want to ever see that vision again. It hurt. Especially since everything else had gone so well with Michael that day.
They hadn’t been together that way in so long. Not that either of them dated anyone else. They saw each other exclusively whenever she was in town. But it was like they were two strangers spending time together, painful and awkward. Tonight marked the first time that she and Michael had communicated in years. And he had to ruin it. With it any chance of true reconciliation. Not that she had ever understood what had driven them apart. She doubted that he understood it either.
She looked at him. Took him in entirely. She was sure this would be the last time she ever saw him. And as angry as she was, her heart would ache without one last goodbye. He looked defeated. Abject. Disconsolate. Maria almost felt the need to reach out to him. She went so far as to raise her hand to touch his cheek and wipe away the tear that seemed to be making a trail down the side of his nose. But she was the injured party here. And this time she would walk away. For real. For good.
“Maria, please. Listen to me. Hear me out. And if you don’t like what I say. Or if you don’t believe me. Well then leave. But at least give me a chance to explain.” Michael knew he was begging for his life. That if this didn’t convince her, she would be gone. And he didn’t think he wanted to live that way. He would have to do some good explaining, some great talking to make things right. He only hoped there was a way to make things right for Maria.
Maria refused to respond. She merely sat on one of the benches by the fountain and looked up at him expectantly. Michael cleared his throat. “Well then. Maria I love you. And I want you in my life. What happened with Liz. What you saw. It wasn’t a vision. It happened by accident. Tonight. Before we got to the Golden Bowl. I can’t explain how or why it happened. But let me tell you what I feel about Liz. I care a great deal about her. But she’s not you. I think I kissed her in part because I didn’t have you. I thought I would never be able to have you. Seeing you today. You looked so amazing. So accessible.
“Today was the first time in years that we’ve been able to communicate. And I know that it my fault. That I’ve shut you out. And I’m so sorry for that. I never wanted to hurt you Maria. What happened on Liz’s balcony had nothing to do with you or Max. It was about the fears Liz and I had. We both feared that we had lost you forever. It’s not easy to think that you will spend the rest of your life without your soulmate. Without the other half of your heart. Because that’s what you are to me.”
Tears welled up in Maria’s eyes. She loved him. Unquestionably. Undeniably. But it was too much. She needed to step away. She needed time. Only she didn’t know how much. She understood what Michael was trying to tell her, but the image of Liz and him kissing rose up along with the bile in her stomach. Dear Lord, the pain was intense, she felt as if her inside was being torn to bits. Bending over, her body shook with the sobs that racked through her. She jerked away when she felt Michael’s hand touch the small of her back.
“Don’t touch me.” Breathing unsteadily she tried to regain a modicum of composure. “Michael, I think it would be best if you didn’t come near me. I…I can’t…oh God Michael, why? Why with her? With my best fucking friend? How fucking dare you? I don’t want to hear it. Just stay away from me.”
“Maria…I…I’m so sorry. You have to believe me—“
“Michael I don’t have to fucking do anything for you.” With those words she left the park. Ran to her car and got in. Speeding away with her tires screeching. Michael collapsed on the ground. Rocking himself back and forth. How had things gone so wrong? He had to make sure that Maria made it home all right. Quickly he ran to his car and set off after her. He would only follow her, just make sure that she was safe.
Max and Liz didn’t leave the Golden Bowl until the music stopped and the lights switched on. They had danced the entire night, holding each other tightly, closely, without ever saying a word. Max settled the bill and offered Liz a ride home. The drive to the Crashdown was as silent as their interactions during the entire evening. Liz was about to burst. There was so much she felt, so much she was holding inside, that she couldn’t not speak anymore.
Max alternated his intense gaze from the road to watch Liz’s profile, she was looking more and more troubled as he neared the diner. When he pulled up along the curb in front of the restaurant Liz turned to him and said, “Thanks for the ride. Umm…will you do me a favor?”
“Sure Liz. What is it?” asked Max eagerly.
“Would you meet me on the balcony in ten minutes? I really need to talk to you.”
Max nodded wordlessly. It seemed as if his biggest dreams were about to come true. He would finally be able to talk to Liz. He needed to tell her how much he loved her still. That whatever the problems between them, they could work them out. He watched as she entered the diner and pulled away into the alleyway behind the Crashdown. There he parked his jeep and climbed up the ladder to Liz’s balcony.
It had been years since he had last stood there, and he was engulfed in memories as he looked around the place he had always considered Liz’s haven, the place he would forever remember as where he first kissed Liz. A step that had forever altered their relationship, admitting for the first time the strength of feeling that lay between them. Taking a seat on the lawn chair that perennially sat next to Liz’s window, he glanced at the wall and noticed something odd, a flickering. He was about to walk towards it to investigate when Liz came up behind him.
“Hey, what are you looking at?”
“What? Oh…nothing I thought I saw something but I guess I didn’t.” Max turned to look at Liz. She was amazing. Breath-taking. How was he even going to begin. How did he apologize for what he hadn’t done. How could he apologize for being what he was, what she had loved.
Liz cleared her throat. Max looked so dark, so intimidating standing in the shadows cast by the streetlight. But she had to tell him how she felt. The only thing Max knew to do was tell her how he felt.
“Max, thanks for bringing me home. It was—“
“No big deal. Liz, I—“
“A very big deal. Max this whole thing—“
“Have done my fair share in destroying—“
“Has been my fault, I know I reacted—“
“What lay between us. But—“
“Badly. I tried so hard, I tried to be better—“
“I couldn’t understand. And I was so lost—“
“More accepting. It made me feel so guilty—“
“There is still so much I don’t remember—“
“And trying to work through my emotions didn’t—“
“So much I wish I could change. But I—“
“Help. So I ran away. From you. From everything—“
“Failed. Miserably. And I know that I pushed you away—“
“But you let me go. And that hurt more than anything—“
“Watching you go was the worst moment in my life—“
“Because that meant that in the end, nothing between us mattered—“
“Because you were my everything. And without you I didn’t think—“
“And everything we suffered meant nothing. And those thoughts—“
“I could survive. I had to grow up. Fast. Without the one person—“
“They killed my confidence. They destroyed my trust in our love—“
“I wanted to be there by my side. But I learned a lot about—“
“I really needed the time to find myself again. In a life where—“
“Myself. The good and the bad. I learned to live without—“
“I wasn’t worried about things not-of-this-Earth. And I really—“
“You. But seeing you today, I realized I can’t make the same—“
“Got to live a normal life. But I realized something, something that—“
“Mistake twice. Liz, I know that the space that has lain—“
“You had already said to me once before. There’s nothing too great—“
“Between us all these years will never be more—“
“About normal. And I knew that however far apart we are, you will—“
“Than the space of time between our heartbeats—“
“Always be a part of me, of who I am. In spite of all the time and distance—“
“I love you. Only you, Liz Parker. Nothing’s changed how I feel about you “
“You will always be in my heart. Why my heart beats. I love you Max.”
They finished speaking at the same time. Both involved in having their say, while recognizing what the other had been saying. And at their mutual declaration of love, Max lost no time in crushing Liz to him like he had done once before all those years ago, and kissed her senseless.
I can't help that I love a fictional character...
|posted on 9-Sep-2001 2:30:44 PM|
Liz was stunned as she felt Max’s lips on hers for the first time in ten years. He nibbled on her sensitive lower lip and slipped his tongue into her mouth when she gasped in response. She had never forgotten Max’s touch, even when she had tried to forget everything about him, even when she had done everything in her power to erase it, her memory of it. He had branded her as his, as misogynistic and backwards as it sounded, the day Max Evans had saved her life and left a silver handprint on her stomach, he had made her his the way no other man ever had.
Max truly was and always would be her one and only. Liz moaned deep in her throat as Max trailed wet kisses down her neck, her turned to jelly when he sucked at the pulse point at the base of her throat.
“Mmm?” responded Max as he nuzzled her neck with his chin as moved to nip at her earlobe with his teeth.
“Max…maybe we…should…um…mmm…talk…take things slow…you know…ohh…before jumping into…things…right where we left off.” Liz managed to stammer out distractedly.
Max groaned as he pulled away from Liz. He had been fantasizing about this moment, about her for the past ten years, more if he counted the fantasies he’d had before they were ever together. Keeping his hands off her would not be easy, especially not if they were going to work things out.
“Okay, you’re right.” He said, once his breathing had returned to somewhat normal.
Max stepped back and gathered his bearings. He sat down on the ever-present lawn chair and looked up at Liz expectantly. She stood stunned. Her breath coming in small gasps as she tried to collect herself not only from the suddenness of his onslaught, but the immediacy of his retreat. She stood before him looking into his heated amber gaze, still a bit confused by his withdrawal.
“So?” asked Max.
“You wanted to talk.”
“Right. Well shouldn’t we talk about our lives, you know in the past eight years a lot has happened. We’ve grown up. We’ve changed. We each fulfilled our dreams. I’m a top researcher. You’re a doctor. We’re different from the two teenagers who took biology together in West Roswell High.”
“No. You’re right. We’ve lived completely separate lives. I know so little of yours. And I do want to know. I regret so many things Liz. Driving you away. My selfishness. The hurts I not only caused you to suffer but everyone else around me. Alex. Isabel. My parents. The Valentis. The list goes on and on. Just because I refused to see what was right in front of me. Because I was afraid—“
“Max. Hush. If you’re referring to Tess, remember that it wasn’t your fault, you had no idea she was mindwarping you, changing all our memories to suit her nefarious purposes.”
“It’s a good word.”
“Again you’re right. It describes Tess’s actions to a tee. But I let her. I let her get away with murder. I lost you because I wasn’t the person you needed me to be. And partly because Tess had a grip on me, but it was also my fault. Because I let her. And how I’ve regretted that.”
Liz looked at Max as his tortured gaze fixated on the street lamp on the corner. Her refusal to explain her actions, her refusal to accept his apologies had hurt him deeply. Her only excuse was the fact that she had been hurting just as badly. “Max, I made mistakes also. I kept so many secrets, I held back how I really felt. You have to know that you never lost me. I may have left, but I left so much behind. I just had to leave for myself”
“And whose fault is that?” Max replied harshly. Unshed tears, emotions lodged in his throat.
“Not yours.” Responded Liz just as vehemently. “God Max, yes it’s true that all those years were probably the worst of my existence. I needed the distance. I needed the time. I needed the space. I had to be able to somehow know who I was on my own. For so many years I had been Liz Parker, science dork, alien’s girlfriend, waitress, I needed to know how all of the fit together and made me who I was.
“I would have never been able to do that here. I think I may have chosen to stay away too long, but fear had more to do with that than my having no desire to see you. God knows you’ve been in my mind, in my heart at all moments for the past eight years.”
“Even with the others?” asked Max quietly.
Liz glanced at Max sharply, how had he known? She had had several romantic involvements since leaving Roswell. She had needed some normalcy. But no one had ever compared to Max. There really was nothing great about normal.
“Maria told me.” He said in reply to her look.
“I’ll be honest. I was trying to forget you Max Evans. The hold you had on my life, on my heart, on my soul. I wanted freedom. I thought nothing would ever bring me back to Roswell, to you. I almost got married. Jared was a good man. And he loved me, but I couldn’t go through with it. Because no matter what happens you are my heart.” At this Liz broke down. Wrapping her arms around her middle she bent over and sobbed, years of repressed emotions expressing themselves for first time.
Max stood up from the chaise lounge and crushed her in his embrace as she cried on his shoulder. She looked so small and frail; the tears that filled her beautiful brown eyes heightened the sorrow and heartache that lay in their depths. Her life had been so complicated and Max couldn’t help feeling it was his fault. Like he had pushed this strong independent woman to her breaking point. That he had broken her spirit the way he had torn her life apart.
Liz felt his arms go around her and knew that this was where she was meant to be. Slowly she quieted, but she didn’t let Max go, even when he tried to take a step back. She raised her gaze to look into his expressive eyes and said, “I can hear your heartbeat.”
Max glanced down at her, surprise driving away the pain and fear that had clouded his eyes. “Oh?” was all he could bring himself to say, wondering where she was going with that comment.
“I’d always thought that you have such an amazing heart. What you did for me that day in the Crashdown, and later when Grandma Claudia passed away, what you did for Kyle, for all those children with cancer, it’s just so amazing.”
“Liz, it’s my gift. I can’t keep it to myself when other’s need my help that wouldn’t—“
“Precisely. Max, not everyone would share, especially when sharing means that every government agency on the planet wants to find you and use you as a pincushion. Not everyone would make that sacrifice.”
“You make me sound so noble.”
“Liz, I’ve made so many mistakes. It’s my fault—“
“No. You were tricked. God, I realize now how hard it must have been for you when I left. It’s just that…Max I forgave you. There was really nothing for me to forgive really. I wasn’t the only one who was hurt. I had gone through so much. I needed time to myself. I needed to be away from Roswell. I realize now how selfish I’ve been. How much pain I’ve caused you.”
“Liz, don’t say that. I understood. I always understood. I only prayed that you would come back. That I hadn’t lost you forever. When I heard about Jared, I was afraid I had, but I never blamed you. All I ever wanted for you was happiness. And I’ve only made you cry. I felt so badly when Maria told me the wedding was off. I had been silently hoping it would be.”
“Max.” Liz whispered softly.
In reply he lowered his head to hers and captured her lips in a heated kiss. Their tongues intermingled and passion swelled between them.
Liz immediately saw images of Max, working hard for his degree. The nights he spent studying. Staring up at the skies wondering if she still looked up to the stars too. The day he graduated. His first patient. The first time he dealt with death. Breaking down outside the hospital, as he failed life. Joy at helping a woman deliver a child. Faith. Hope. Joy. Liz saw his life through his eyes. And she was humbled by the intense love he still felt.
Max’s lips moved over Liz, committing them to memory, mapping them out with his tongue. Feeling everything that had been denied him so long. He saw flashes of Liz, at work, studying hard in the lab. Bonding over a project with Jared. Laughing. Looking away from the stars that reminded her too much of Max. The day she broke up with Jared. Her renewed focus on her research. The joy of a breakthrough. The dilemma of returning to Roswell. Her fear. Her joy. Michael. Liz kissing Michael.
He pulled away. Staring at her in incomprehension. Suddenly they both heard a movement on the ladder leading up to Liz’s balcony. Michael climbed up before noticing that both Max and Liz were there. Max didn’t think. He punched Michael. Looking at Liz, anger and betrayal blazing through the amber depths, he said a curt good night before swinging down and speeding off in his jeep.
Michael fell to the floor the breath knocked out of him. He barely registered Max’s departure, let alone what had set him off. As he slowly dragged himself to his feet Max’s anger and Liz’s stunned look quickly indicated the state of affairs.
“He knows.” He stated simply, softly.
“Did you tell—“
“No. He must have seen it when we kissed.
“Crap. Maria found out the same way. She flipped out on me too. That’s why I came here…I didn’t think…I’m sorry if I made things worse.”
“It’s okay Michael. Max will calm down as soon as he gets home. I’m not that worried about him. He’s just upset, but he loves me, his instinct will be to let me explain and I will. Later. It’s Maria I’m worried about.”
“She’s really hurt, Liz. Angry. I made a complete mess of explaining it too. She’s mad because—“
“You opened up and she wasn’t there.”
“Yeah.” Michael moved from the edge of the balcony to sit on the lounge chair. Liz sat down next to him, leaning her head on his shoulder. They sat that way for several minutes before Liz spoke.
“What did you tell her?”
“The truth. I think. That I don’t know why it happened. That it doesn’t mean we want to be together. Liz, how do I explain a kiss that was about love, passion, friendship, understanding, need, comfort, giving, and taking without making it sound bad? Because that’s what it was about for me.”
“I feel the same way Michael. And I don’t know how to explain it. But it felt right.”
“Yeah. I love you Liz.”
“I love you too Michael. But tell me what is it you want?”
Michael laughed, trust Liz to see straight through him. “I’m serious you know. But would you talk to Maria?”
“I know. And of course I will, if she lets me. But she needs a longer cooling off period.”
“What will you do if it doesn’t work?”
“Grovel. Beg. Offer myself up as a sacrificial lamb to the slaughter. I don’t know.”
“If I know Maria any, she’ll probably run away from this.”
Michael sighed. He leaned his head against Liz’s.
“What should I do then?”
“Follow her. She needs a grand gesture. Take a leave of absence. Or transfer from department. Michael she needs to believe you. And if you make a sacrifice like that, she will.”
“I don’t want to leave Roswell Liz.”
“Do you want Maria?”
“Then nothing else matters.”
Michael sighed yet again. Nothing was turning out as he planned. Tonight he had hoped to finally rekindle his romance with Maria, while instead he was left sitting in the cool desert air on Liz’s balcony. “You’re going to Max’s now?”
“Yeah. I don’t want to give him too much time to think about it. Thanks for coming Michael. I needed this.”
“Come on. I’ll give you a ride. He won’t know. Call me tomorrow if you need anything. With Max or Maria.” Michael stood up and pulled Liz up with him. Brushing his lips against hers in a chaste kiss he stretched and made his way over to the ladder as Liz followed him somewhat bemusedly. It was so weird for her to consider Michael a friend she could talk to about anything. But Michael probably knew more about her than anyone. The twists life takes.
Liz stood nervously at Max’s door as Michael drove off. The ride over had been done in a companionable silence, but now the silence was overwhelming. She hoped that her instincts were right and that Max had been waiting for her.
He looked disheveled and slightly drunk as he opened the door. Liz was worried. She hadn’t thought he’d reacted that badly, but maybe she had been wrong.
“Lith. You broke m’eart. With my betht friend. Firtht Kyle. Then you leftht. Now with him.”
“Max are you drunk?” Liz exclaimed aghast.
“Yeth. Why’re you ‘ere?”
“Max I came to explain. That…that kiss meant nothing more than friendship. Max? Max? I
can’t believe you got drunk!”
“Neither can I.” Max leered at her from the door. He had been swaying while he spoke and was obviously leaning against the door for support. Liz made her way in and stood in the foyer watching him as he closed the door and leaned against it.
“Max. believe me when I say this. You are the one I love. The only man for me.”
“How do you want me to prove—“
“Max that might not be—“ Max cut Liz off as he suddenly grabbed her in his arms a place a hard wet kiss on her lips. Liz tensed up for a moment before submitting, his kiss tasted slightly of rum and cherry coke, and that in of itself was intoxicating. Passion flared between them. Max was more daring, the alcohol causing all his inhibitions all his caution to fly away with the wind. He pulled Liz more tightly into his embrace and pushed them to his bedroom.
“Max…are you? Is this a good idea?”
Max took control, running his tongue across her lips he demanded entrance. This time he wasn’t about to let her go. In her kiss he could feel the love, could see the love she had always felt for him. Love that he had been blind to before. He pulled Liz into his bedroom bringing her only more tightly to him. Without releasing his hold on her mouth he ran his hands through her hair dropping the pins that held it to the floor.
Liz’s sole response was to grab at the collar of his mussed shirt and moan deep in her throat. She wanted more. She wanted everything. She was undone by the strength of the passion between them. She needed to feel him. Skin to skin. She yanked his shirt open, buttons flying out in every direction, as he let go of her to pull her shirt over her head and undo the clasp of her bra.
Liz kissed his neck and sucked gently at the base, where his pulse throbbed with increasing rapidity. Max ran his hands down her shoulders, her arms, relishing the feel of her smooth skin against his hands. He couldn’t believe that he was holding her in his arms. He wouldn’t let her go now. Ever.
Slowly he reached to cup her small breasts in his hands. She was so small yet so perfect. He just wanted to cherish every inch of her. Pushing her down on the bed, he made short work of pulling off her skirt and panties. She was so beautiful as she lay before him, and he responded to the desire he saw in her eyes by lying over her, propping himself up on his elbows.
“Max.” she whispered as he played with the strands of her hair that fell across her chest.
“Mmm. You’re beautiful. You literally take my breath away.” Max smiled as she blushed and hid her face in the crook of his neck. Slowly she began to nuzzle it, first with her nose, then her lips. Reaching up she ran her tongue across the outer shell of his ear, before sucking gently on his sensitive earlobe.
Max groaned at the feel of Liz’s mouth against his skin. Cupping her breast in one hand he slowly massaged it until her nipple hardened as if to ask for more. Answering its silent plea he made his way down her body, suckling and nibbling both her nipples as Liz’s fingers tangled in his hair.
He continued his descent, spreading kisses across her flat stomach. Stopping only to look up at her as he reached the curls at the juncture of her thighs. Gently, he pressed a kiss against her most private of parts. She was already wet and ready in anticipation of his next move. With his fingers he opened the womanly folds and lightly began tracing patterns against her heated skin. Liz’s body bucked slightly in response, begging for more, always wanting more. Slowly he inserted his finger and began pushing in and out of her as she moaned in response. Feeling her tense up he replaced his finger with his mouth and tongue, thrusting in and out of her, tasting the essence of her.
Liz felt as if she was going insane, Max’s mouth making her crazy with want. She moaned his name, begging him to soothe the ache she felt as her body throbbed with an intense need. Just when she thought she was about to explode Max quickly shed his pants, reached into his pocket for a condom and rolled it on himself before thrusting into her willing body with a vengeance. Setting a hard fast pace they both climaxed, shivering with passion and with joy at the idea of finally being one. He rolled on the bed to hold her as she lay on him, still sheathed inside her body. They would never be apart now.
“You weren’t drunk were you?” asked Liz after a while.
Max had been running his hands through her hair and stroking her back absently. His body shook with silent laughter. “No. Not really. I just…I was sick of all the bullshit Liz. I love you. I always have. Granted I didn’t react well to your kissing Michael, but when I thought of the feelings you showed me, yes there was love, but more than that there was trust, friendship, understanding. And then I realized what it was you felt for me. Love, passion, utter chemistry. So when you showed up on my doorstep, I figured that the easiest way of getting you to agree with me was to not make you speak of it. Besides I really wanted to get laid.”
“Did you? And how did it feel?”
“Baby, it was the most mind-blowing sex I’ve ever had.”
“Hmm. Why is that?”
“Because it was more than sex, for the first time I’ve made love. And that will be what I always will share with you. Liz, neither one of us have been saints, but what we shared tonight, it will always be something we share, between us. I wanted to ask you something.” He said almost hesitantly.
“I don’t know if it’s too soon, but Liz, baby, will you marry me? Now that I’ve found you I can’t let you go.”
“Oh Max. Yes.”
“Shh. We’ll figure it all out later. Right now let’s make up for time lost.” Liz smiled as she felt him
stir within her. Now it would be his turn to suffer. And she would make him beg.
I can't help that I love a fictional character...
|posted on 9-Sep-2001 2:41:41 PM|
Max sat up confused as Liz climbed out of the bed and walked into the bathroom. “Liz weren’t we—“
Liz laughed softly and said, “Max, remember all those years ago, when you shared my locker room fantasy?”
Max nodded as he swallowed audibly.
“Well I’ve always wanted to recreate that.” With those words Liz walked into the bathroom, leaving the door open for Max to follow.
When he walked in she had turned the hot water on and was letting steam rise slowly from the cold porcelain finish of the tub. “Are you planning to scald us?” he asked jokingly. He cleaned himself off from their previous activities as she opened the cabinet doors and closed them.
“No.” she replied as she rummaged through his bathroom cabinets. Finally finding that something she needed. She tested the temperature of the water and fiddled with the faucets until she felt she had it just right.
She stepped into the shower spray and Max’s knees went weak. She looked glorious. Her skin glistening with moisture, slightly flushed with heat. He couldn’t resist her any further. Following her he grabbed her face and kissed her openmouthed, their tongues intermingling with the water. Max ran his tongue across her smooth teeth, suctioned her tongue slightly before pulling her lower lip into his mouth in the way he knew made her crazy.
Liz gasped, the shower spray hitting her aching breasts, her skin that begged for Max’s touch. She could feel the tightening of need within her womb, a growing energy that would eventually be released. Max had transferred his attention to her ears and neck. Nibbling and kissing, he slowly made his way down her body to her breasts taking each hardened nipple into his mouth and lavishing all his attention on it.
Liz knew that if Max kept this up she would be the one who was begging and she wanted it to be him. Pushing herself away she looked deeply into his eyes and smiled, Max knew then that he was in for it. She tangled her fingers in his hair and brought his face down to hers, she kissed forehead, his eyes, the tip of his nose, his chin, before going to nuzzle his neck and suckle his ear lobe. Slowly she continued her descent kissing every available inch of skin. Max’s erection was rock hard, jutting out proudly and as Liz sunk to her knees before him she pressed a kiss on its tip. Her fingers tickled lightly at the base of his testicles when she took him in her mouth entirely, her tongue exploring his sensitive nerve endings. Slowly she began to thrust up and down until Max was going mad with desire, he couldn’t see straight. The shower spray felt like thousands of little fingers exploring his body. The warmth adding to the desire he felt.
Suddenly he pulled Liz up and pushed her against the wall. Grabbing the foil packet Liz had placed in the soap dispenser he quickly rolled it over his erection and plunged into Liz who was more than ready to take him. Together they rode out the wave of their passion until they both climaxed against the tiled wall.
“Mmm. That was even better than my fantasy.” Liz managed to say when speaking was once again possible.
Max merely grinned and taking a bar of soap began smoothing it over her skin. Liz followed suit, and they were once again playing the tantalizing game of seduction as they washed up.
Hours later they had eventually moved from the bathroom to the bed. Max stared down at Liz who slept in his arms. Their life was slowly coming together. Now that she was here, he wouldn’t let her go. No matter what. Because love was all that mattered.
Max closed his eyes and went to sleep. As the room was surrounded in a red glow, the slumbering bodies bathed in its light. Max and Liz slept wrapped up wholly in each other.
The next morning dawned bright and early, and Max and Liz wakened slowly to the world around them. Awed by the feeling of waking to Liz in his arms, Max was content to stroke her hair and watch her sleep. Savoring ever moment they shared together. As he stroked her hair he was surprised to notice a slight red glow emanate from their bodies. At first he dismissed it, but then he noticed it varied in luminosity. Experimentally he alternated letting go of Liz and holding her closer, concluding that the closer they were the more intense the glow, the farther apart, the glow lessened.
“Liz…love…wake up.” he whispered in her ear. Excited by his findings, sure that Liz’s scientific mind would appreciate the mystery.
“Mmm. Morning honey.” she murmured as they smiled into each other’s eyes. He kissed Liz tenderly in response. Max realized that the glow shone brighter as they kissed.
“Liz, have you noticed anything weird?” he asked.
“Like a reddish light shining in the bedroom.”
“Yeah, it must be a neon light from outside. Why? What’s so weird about that?”
“Baby, it’s us. There’re no neon lights outside my window.”
“What do you mean it’s us?”
“Watch.” Max trapped Liz’s lips in another heartfelt kiss, their tongues playing a playful dance. Holding her hand in his, lacing their fingers together the red glow grew until surrounding them in a ball of fiery energy.
As they broke apart the energy seemed to settle between them. And they stared at one another wordlessly. A few minutes passed, and Liz got up out of bed, threw her clothes on and left the apartment before Max could even think to ask, “Where are you going?”.
Liz ran to the Crashdown. She climbed up the ladder to her balcony and saw it. The red heart on her wall emanated a quiet light. It shone like a beacon, it had been shining all those years, but she had refused to see it.
Liz sat down in her lounge chair, her head between her hands and waited for Max. She knew he’d come. She had so much to explain to him. She suspected there was more to the red glow than they could see, and if her reasoning was correct then there were more people involved than just them.
Max rounded the corner and climbed the stairs agilely; he hoped he was right and that she had just run to the place she had always considered a haven. As he made his way to the top, he was struck by two things. One, that there was what seemed to be a big neon sign on Liz’s balcony, close to where he had noticed the flickering the other day, and two, that Liz looked so beautiful, so troubled with her head in her hands, her lustrous chocolate hair falling like a curtain to cover her face.
“Liz? Why’d you run?” Max asked quietly.
“I remembered something, and I needed to see if I was right.”
“Liz, why is there a neon light on your balcony?”
“It isn’t a neon light. Look at it closely Max.”
“Is that…it’s a big heart with our initials on it? Why would that be there?”
“That night you were really drunk, you drew this on the wall, and I thought you had made it fade away, but you didn’t, or it didn’t go away. But Max this thing has been calling me back for years.”
“What? How? Why?” sputtered Max confusedly.
“I’m not sure. It’s never been as bright as it is now. I have a theory, but I need to test it first. I don’t want to lead us down the wrong track.”
“Test it? How?”
Liz smiled, at least part of the testing would be fun she thought to herself. Max looked into Liz’s eyes and immediately understood what she meant to do. He opened his arms to her and caught her as she threw herself into them. Lifting her up against his body, they began kissing, their tongues dueling each other as they memorized the taste of each other.
“Liz, love, it’s broad daylight.” Max murmured against her lips.
Liz ignored his warning and snuck her hands beneath his t-shirt, feeling the corded muscles of his back. She traced a teasing pattern across his skin before raking her nails gently down his back. Liz smiled as Max shivered in reaction, before running his hands down her shoulders and back, lifting her shirt up, off above her head and bending down to grasp a straining nipple in his mouth. She had foregone underwear when she had left his apartment.
She was wet and ready for him. She could feel the pulse of his erection against her skin.
Tantalizingly she rubbed down against it, as Max pushed her up against the wall, right against the gleaming heart. She used her legs to lower Max’s pants and as soon as he had sprung free she lowered herself onto his hard cock. She set the rhythm, beginning with a slow smooth up and down motion, driving them wilder with want and desire. Until Max took control, and thrust into her at a frantic pace, and as they both climaxed against the wall, they were surrounded in an explosion of red light that knocked them both to the floor.
When Max awoke he was only aware of his throbbing head. Cautiously turning he looked over his shoulder to see Liz lying on her side, unconscious. Quickly assessing his own injuries he healed himself before kneeling over Liz’s still figure. Placing his hands on both sides of her face, he formed an instant connection to her and quickly repaired any of the damage done by their fall to the ground.
She opened her eyes as soon as he had finished, their dark depths both thankful and inviting. He bent his head and brushed his lips over hers, surprised by the way she responded. Their kiss was long and leisurely, Liz’s tongue sweeping across his teeth, under his palate, playfully dueling his tongue, they tasted one another, loved one another completely.
“Did it work?” inquired Max once they had assured each other that red explosions aside they were both all right.
“Your experiment. Was that what you expected to happen?”
“Um…sort of. Although not really.”
“Yes, but I can’t. At least not yet. I need to go over some things first.”
Max nodded in understanding. He knew that Liz would confide in him as soon as she could, and respected her decision. Even though he was leery of keeping secrets, he knew that this time around he wouldn’t be kept in the dark for too long. Suddenly he started. “Oh God Liz, we…I forgot to use a condom.”
Liz smiled. “Don’t worry Max. Actually I’m covered. I just thought it would be better to wait for that kind of intimacy, but maybe that was me just being silly. Then again, maybe it was a good thing we waited ‘til now.”
“Oh. Okay. Yeah. So what do we do now?”
“Well, as much as I would love that answer to be we should stay in bed all day, there is stuff I have to take care of. I’m thinking of heading out to Las Cruces. And was kind of hoping you’d talk to Maria. I think you more than anyone would understand how she feels right about now, and I don’t think my explanations regarding Michael are going to cut it. I know it’s really something I should do, but I think Michael and I have a better chance of getting Maria to listen if you talk to her first. You do understand about Michael and me, right?” Liz asked worriedly.
“Actually I do. And I think you’re right, it will be easier for everyone if I talk to Maria first. I’m going to shower and change and then head over there. Okay?”
“Thank you so much Max.” Liz leaned over to kiss him, and it was several minutes before either of them could speak again. “Yeah, right so then call Kyle and Iz and tell them to meet us here after work. And to bring their files about Derringer with them.”
“Okay. Do you want me to call Michael too?”
“Um…no, Michael and I will be together.”
“Because I need him. Max, I love you.”
“I trust you Liz, really I do. But sometimes it isn’t easy.”
“You can always trust that I love you. Hey, otherwise I wouldn’t be laying out here half naked on my balcony at my parent’s home.”
“You realize you’re moving in with me.” Max replied.
Liz laughed and hugged him tightly. Smiling she ran to enter her bedroom before she got further distracted by Max’s sexy stare. He drove her crazy with desire. Max shook his head and left. He had to get a lot done today, and talking to Maria wouldn’t be an easy task.
I can't help that I love a fictional character...
|posted on 9-Sep-2001 2:43:34 PM|
Kyle and Isabel had awakened for the first time in each other’s arms. Getting ready for work that morning had been a slow moving project, that had ended up in both of them calling in sick. Soon after the butterfly chair encounter they had moved into Isabel’s bedroom before indulging in a round of passion so intense that when they both came it felt like an explosion.
For the first time they were content. At peace. Kyle felt a little cheated by the years he had spent practicing Buddhism to keep himself centered a waste of time, it turned out that loving Isabel and being loved by her was all he needed.
Isabel was awed by the way Kyle held her in his arms. For the first time in her life she felt cherished. Not worshipped, not adored, but cherished by someone who knew everything about her, all her faults and still loved her. Loved who she was inside. His tenderness was all she needed to feel safe. She knew that with Kyle she couldn’t be hurt, because that would hurt him.
“Hey sweetheart. Morning.” Kyle whispered as he nuzzled her neck and kissed the point where her pulse throbbed.
“Mmm. If you keep that up, you know we’ll never leave this bed.”
“Hmm. Don’t tempt me.”
Isabel looked into Kyle’s eyes, smiling at the warmth and love that shone so clearly in them. It was still so new, the realization that she was so loved. Knowing that she had placed her heart in the hands of someone who had also trusted his heart with her.
“We need to talk.” Kyle said quietly.
“About what?” Isabel questioned sharply.
“Well, about a lot of things, like living arrangements, but I was referring to the case Iz. I think we should screw discovery laws and tell each other what we know.”
“Kyle, we could be disbarred.” Isabel replied, secretly relieved at the topic that needed discussion.
“Iz, what if this has to do with you guys. I’m not putting you in that kind of danger. The documents I’ve seen so far have been very leading.”
“So what are you saying?”
“I’m saying let’s look over both sides of this together, like we did in school. Look for the holes, what seems off, the little details that jump to our attention. And then let’s share that with the group.”
Isabel knew that Kyle was right. It worried her that they were both taking this risk, but it needed to be done. They both got up out of bed, Isabel headed to the bathroom to brush her teeth and freshen up, while Kyle went to the kitchen and made coffee for two.
Later they both sat surrounded by files on Isabel’s bed, jotting down notes and occasionally glancing at each other and blushing.
“So now you know what I was thinking about all the times we did this.” Kyle said when he couldn’t stand the tension or the silence any longer.
Isabel laughed. “Here I was thinking the same thing.”
Kyle looked at Isabel measuringly and dropping his pen to the floor, tackled Isabel and began kissing her. Saying as he did, “I think we deserve a study break.”
“How is this a good idea?” complained Michael as fiddled with the radio in Liz’s rental car. She had dropped by his home and picked him up without allowing him any say in the matter. She hadn’t even bothered explaining what was going on. She just said that she needed him to accompany her to Las Cruces.
“Michael will you stop complaining. And choose a station for God’s sake, you’re driving me crazy.”
“Tell me what this is all about? Liz, I refuse to behave until you tell me what the hell is going on. And why the hell we’re heading out of town like this.”
“Okay, okay. God Michael you haven’t changed.”
Michael gave Liz one of his characteristic grins and settled back in the passenger seat, placing his hands behind his head. Nodding at her in encouragement, he sat back to listen to Liz’s story.
“I mentioned that the research I’m involved in has to do with the properties of healing. The thing is there are two significant discoveries that seem to have a particular import on our current situation. About three years ago, while testing vital scar tissue in plants we discovered that there are two enzymes that remain energized—“
“Where are you going with this? And what the hell does it have to do with us?”
“If you’d shut up and listen maybe you’d let me get there. Mesjase and tedinase.”
“Will you listen? Those are the enzymes, they’re very rare, and when they come into contact with trace cadmium-y it revitalizes the cells, leaving them intact, the only evidence a rosy glow.”
“Cadmium-y? Is that related to the cadmium-x? Are you saying it’s alien related?”
“Not exactly. Cadmium-y does occur on the Earth’s surface, but the conditions need to be right. And it only appears as an active isotope when mesjase and tedinase are near. It also has a long half-life, so traces of it occur for nearly as long a period as does carbon.”
“Okay. Again Liz what does this have to do with us?”
“My body, my cells have that rosy glow, only it’s more a vibrant red. Ever since the shooting, apparently. Kyle’s should appear similar to mine. See the thing about healing is that not everyone has the same amount of the enzymes in their system. Some people don’t have it at all. I think you guys as hybrids have an increased amount of the enzymes in your bloodstream. Which may be why it’s possible for you guys to heal.”
“Wow. Okay. So why are we going to Las Cruces? Why didn’t you bring Max along? He’s the healer, not me.”
“Michael you can heal. I want to run a few tests. I know that my reaction with Max is extreme and I need to figure out how to contain it before trying to figure it out. I believe that my blood will react with yours, just not as explosively.”
“This sounds like a bad idea.”
“Well Michael…”said Liz as she turned into the parking lot of Las Cruces, “That’s why I asked you to come.”
Michael gave her a grin and raising his eyebrow said, “Well then let’s get it on!”
Meanwhile, back in Roswell, Max was waiting at Señor Chow’s for Maria. She had refused to even set foot near the Crashdown, giving Max a clear indication as to how upset she was. He looked up as the bell above the door rang and watched as Maria walked through the restaurant entrance.
Maria looked ravaged, dark shadows underscoring her usually bright blue eyes, which were at the moment red and puffy. The tip of her nose was red and her usually pale skin was blotched by tears. She looked as if she had cried all night.
In truth she had. She felt so betrayed. By Michael, the one man she had always loved. By Liz her best friend in the world. There was nothing she could trust. The hope that she had held on to during the past eight years had failed her. There was nothing to stay for.
“’Ria. Oh God.” Max embraced her as she fell apart, crying on his shoulder. Max didn’t know how long her stood there, holding Maria as she cried. He made soothing noises as he caressed her back with his hand, stroking her hair as her sobs turned to small gasps and involuntary shivers.
“Max. I…God…how could they do this? To me. To you. To us.”
“Maria. It’s not what you think. I know what you saw. I saw it too. And I almost forgot to pay attention to what else was there.”
“What are you talking about Max? How is it not what I think?”
Max grasped Maria’s hand and looked deep into her eyes as he began to explain earnestly what had happened between Michael and Liz. “They needed that. I’m not happy about it, but it needed to happen between them. Liz and I, we’re together now, beyond what we ever were to each other in the past. ‘Ria I know how much she loves me. She’s marrying me.”
“Bullshit Max. That kiss meant something. I—“
“Listen to me. Okay. Yes it meant something. And I can’t explain it for them. But that kiss wasn’t everything to them. I promise you that. You complete Michael the way no one else does. The way Liz completes me. Look at me. Let me try to show you.”
Max concentrated on Maria, forming a connection, and she was quickly absorbed in a rush of images. Michael sitting with Max at the Crashdown, watching every move Maria made. Michael in the granolith chamber right before Tess departed, when he decided to stay. Michael as he told Max a story about Maria. Michael as he held Maria in his arms at Alex’s funeral. Michael arguing with Liz. Michael protecting Liz. Michael fighting with Maria. Michael sharing who he was with Maria.
Maria was overwhelmed. She could see the love that Michael felt, she could even feel it herself. “So you’re saying he loves me. How does he feel about Liz?”
“I can’t answer for him Maria. But I believe that the deep love that they feel for each other is purely platonic. They are comfortable with each other. They can talk to each other. Because it’s you and I who matter in the end.”
“So you’re saying that because we are so important to them, they need each other to talk?”
“I know it sounds weird. But it’s true. Maria, Liz and I finally cemented what has been between us all these years. We may need to work out a few of the kinks, but we will be together after waiting for so long.”
“I should give Michael a chance then?”
“Try Maria. If not for him, for you.” Maria nodded at Max’s words. She was a little calmer after hearing the story from Max. She knew he wouldn’t lie to her. It would take time and a lot of explaining, but maybe things might be all right after all.
“’Ria come to the Crashdown tonight. It’s an emergency gathering.”
“Okay. I’m going home. I need to sleep and also I want to think this through. I’ll be there tonight though. I promise.” Maria squeezed Max’s hand before leaving the restaurant.
Max watched her thoughtfully after she left. He could only hope he had done some good.
Kyle licked off the whipped cream off a strawberry before eating it. As he bit it juice dribbled down his chin. Isabel proceeded to lick his neck and swiping her tongue over his lips she tasted a little bit of the tangy sweetness of the berries. They were in the midst of another study break. Isabel reached for the can of whipped cream and giving it a shake she applied it down her neck and over her cleavage. Kyle followed the obvious trail suckling gently, relishing the feel and taste of Isabel’s skin. They hadn’t bothered with clothes since their last break.
Isabel moaned as she made a trail of whipped cream from her breasts to her navel to the nest of curls that throbbed with need and desire. Kyle obediently went along with what Isabel had in mind. Whirling his tongue down Isabel’s flat stomach, he followed Isabel’s path to her feminine folds. Releasing cool air as he blew on her heat, Isabel’s hips bucked beneath him. His tongue began playing a devlish dance across Isabel’s aching wetness, driving her mad with utter pleasure. Giving her a release she hadn’t dreamed of. Their skin began to glow with the fevered pitch of their lovemaking.
Kyle slipped on a condom before entering Isabel’s warm opening, thrusting in and out of her body; their hearts beat at a frantic pace. And as they climaxed they noticed the glow on their skin intensify.
They lay sated in the midst of fruit and papers.
“What on Earth was that?”
Isabel shook her head at Kyle’s question. “I never…what…Kyle what if it’s not Earthly?”
“Shit.” Kyle said feelingly.
Isabel glanced at him sharply, sometimes their relationship was still too raw for her to understand if Kyle was about to run away freaked out by all things alien or if he was just taking things in stride.
She waited for him to continue, afraid to breathe, afraid that the last twelve hours of absolute wonder would fade away.
“We’re going to have to share this with the others.”
Kyle’s statement set Isabel off in surprised laughter. And he gave her a devilish grin as he asked her. “Maybe we should finish up sorting through this stuff, before we share?” Setting them both off in renewed gales of laughter.
“Liz what is that?”
“Michael, you know what it is.”
“But what are you planning to do with it?”
“What do you think Michael?”
“Please tell me it’s not what I think it is.”
“Michael my dear, it is exactly what you think. Now sit still!”
“Oww. Get that thing away from me.”
“Michael, you’d think that the big scary alien wouldn’t be afraid of the little-bitty needle.” Liz said in a baby voice.
“It hurt.” He said with a scowl.
Liz shook her head. Michael looked so funny frowning at the place in his arm she had used to draw blood.
“What is it now? You big baby?”
“Oh…now I’m a baby, before I was a big scary alien! That’s nice. Remind me never to help you again.” Michael complained jokingly.
“Michael. Don’t say that. I don’t know what I would have done without all the help you’ve given me through the years.”
Michael stopped short of smelling the test tube he was investigating. The serious note in Liz’s voice indicated that they weren’t joking anymore. “Liz…I’ve always done what I thought was right. Sadly you seem to be right most of the time.”
Liz smiled as Michael gave her a half hug. She was using a dropper to combine their blood on a petri dish. Taking a few drops of the combination blood and placing them on a slide, she prepared the microscope. As she looked through the lens she gasped. Michael didn’t know rightly what it was Liz was seeing, but he could see the red light emanating from the slide beneath the microscope.
“Liz? What the hell is that?”
“The cadmium-y in my blood reacting to the mesjase and tedinase in yours. Max and I had a more violent reaction, I wonder if it was the form of contact or if he has a higher percentage of the enzymes in his bloodstream?”
“What were you guys doing?”
“What? Oh, nothing. Never mind Michael.” Liz said as she blushed.
“Oh God. It wasn’t just kissing was it?”
“Um. No. Kissing. We should test that.”
“Okay. Do you want me to call Max?”
“Oh no. I’m not doing that again. Liz come on, I already have so much explaining to do.”
“Well what’s a little more in the name of science?”
“If this backfires, it’s on your head. No tongue.”
“Michael. Two words for you, bodily fluids.”
“God, no. Fine, but no more than sixty seconds. I’m setting my alarm.”
Michael and Liz looked at each other warily, as they leaned towards each other.
Max had been sitting at his window watching for Michael and Liz’s return for a while when the phone rang. He picked it up, unsure of whom would be calling him. He had already spoken to Maria.
And Kyle and Isabel had called to confirm their presence at the meeting about twenty minutes ago. Michael and Liz were on the road on their way back to Roswell. Unless they had run into some trouble.
“Hello?” Max could here the sound of breathing emanating from the body on the other end of the phone and heard the distinct click of being hung up on.
He hoped to God that it hadn’t meant anything.
The group sat assembled in their old booth at the Crashdown, the waitresses were different young girls, wearing the same green and silver uniforms, antennas perched on the top of their heads, rattling of the out-of-this-worldly list of specials. It was at once so very different, and so very much the same.
“Kyle and I went over the documents we had on the Derringer estate, but I think that it definitely calls for an on-site visit. We can’t really have an idea about what the fuss is about without actually seeing it. As far as we can tell, there are special mineral deposits, in particular of cadmium. But no evidence exists pointing to the so-called cadmium-x isotope the Special Unit had documents on. Then again maybe Nasedo destroyed that too.”
“Yeah, as far as we can tell this may actually be a fight over mineral rights. But for some reason it doesn’t seem that necessary to the government. Also we put together a list of names for you Michael. Atherton is on it. And River Dog. I just wish I could figure out how the hell they tie in to the whole thing. I hate that they’re putting me in this thing, they’re leading me in blind.” Kyle added.
Liz and Michael had listened attentively to what Kyle and Isabel had to say. By all indications, Liz’s arrival, and the importance of her research had all been perfectly timed with this case. And the outcome of it all, and the importance it all had on their lives was critical.
“Michael and I went to Las Cruces to try out an experiment today.”
“Were you guys successful? You haven’t said a thing since you guys got in.” questioned Max anxiously.
“We really wanted to hear about Kyle and Isabel’s case first. I wanted to be sure they were unrelated.” replied Liz.
“And were they?” asked Max worriedly.
“Nope. We’re in it to our necks.” contributed Michael.
“What’s going on you guys?” asked Maria. She had been mostly silent, but the tone of the conversation had taken a frightening turn.
“Ok, my research has dealt mainly with the properties of the healing process, of regeneration. It’s a long process but suffice to say that I discovered that there are two enzymes—mesjase and tedinase that react with cadmium-y, a rare isotope that occurs in nature. The aftereffects of the process include a presence of cadmium-y in the bloodstream. The cadmium-y is identifiable by a red glow, especially when in close contact with the enzymes.
“Max and I realized that when we…um were…um kissing and touching intimately the red glow would emanate from somewhere within us. So I decided to see what exactly was the cause of it. And it reminded me a lot of the glow trace cadmium-y would leave when in contact with mesjase and tedinase. The combination of Max’s and my blood was somewhat explosive, so I used mine and Michael’s for my experiment, on the off chance that it would produce the same results.”
“And did it?” asked Isabel quietly.
“Less explosively, yeah. Um…we even tested the extent of contact needed. And just a kiss should show some reaction…especially if there has been previous contact between the isotope and the enzymes. Uh…Kyle…Iz…have you guys noticed anything at all?”
Kyle started laughing, “Yeah…um…oomph.” He erupted into gales of laughter as Isabel tried to subtly elbow him in the ribs. Answering for Kyle, Isabel nodded her head.
Once Kyle had calmed down, he asked Liz, “Is there any way to control the reaction? I mean from what we could tell, the end result of a kiss means shining as bright as a stop light.”
“Right. Yeah I haven’t gotten that far yet. I’ve only just figured out the cause. I guess the more time apart, the lesser the reaction.”
“No PDA’s for us Iz.”
“What made you think there were going to be any?” Isabel replied sardonically.
The rest of the group began to laugh at the expression on Kyle’s face. He showered them all with an evil glare before joining in. Once they had calmed down he turned to Isabel saying, “Izzie…we should go. We need to get a good night’s sleep tonight.”
The group quieted as Kyle and Isabel walked out the door. Sitting in an uncomfortable silence, Liz finally stood up and motioned for Maria to follow her into the break room. The boys watched their favorite women walk away from them. Michael praying that in the end he’d get another chance. Max stood up, tensely walking around the diner, checking the bathrooms and the sidewalk in what looked to be a surveillance check. Michael watched him quizzically. It wasn’t like Max to worry so much about the perimeters.
“Maxwell? What’s going on?”
“What are you talking about Michael?”
“Max, you’ve been antsy all evening. Spill.”
“Did you guys call me?”
“Yeah, to tell you we were heading home. Why?”
“No I meant after that.”
“No. Maxwell what the hell are you talking about?”
“I got this creepy phone call. And there was something about it. The timing. It just set me on edge. I just really wish I could figure out who it was?”
“I’ll check the logs for you man. Wanna keep this under wraps? Yeah. We all have enough on our plates, I’m probably just worrying about nothing.”
“Yeah well. God what do you think is going on with them?”
“Michael, don’t worry. Maria loves you. She’s really hurt, and she needs the reassurance. You just have not ruin it when you speak to her.”
“Thanks for the vote of confidence man.”
“I think that this is a time for more than words.”
“What the hell are you babbling about now Maxwell?"
“Show her. You’ve really got to open up.”
Michael groaned. “Max.”
“I’m going crazy here, let’s walk.”
Leaving a note with one of the waitresses Michael and Max left the girls to sort out their problems.
I can't help that I love a fictional character...
|posted on 9-Sep-2001 2:46:22 PM|
Liz and Maria sat on the small couch in the break room. Liz smiled at her best friend since forever.
“’Ria. You must be so mad.”
“Honestly I was. Beyond mad. The idea of you and Michael, it was like a knife in the heart. It twisted my gut. Especially when I realized it was real. I felt how it felt for you guys, and I was jealous. Michael and I have been on the fritz since we first started dating, and the utter peace that one kiss gave you, both of you—“
“Was what made us realize that we were sick of peace. Maria, peace is all well and good. But passion, like the kind you and Michael share, is so rare. Kissing Michael was—“
“A mistake?” Maria interrupted.
“Um. No. Not exactly. It actually will be something I’ll only regret in regards to the hurt it has caused you. It was the best thing that could have possibly happened on my return to Roswell.”
“Even better than getting back together with Max?”
“No of course not, but because of that kiss we are together. That kiss, it made me realize something. That I had to face my demons. That I had to go to the restaurant. That I had to feel Max’s arms around me once more, before I wrote off the what ifs and if nots of my life.”
“But why Liz? Why Michael?”
“I think Michael and I have more in common than most people think we do. I shut down, after Alex and Tess. The whole thing, I couldn’t think about it, I couldn’t talk about it. That knee-jerk reaction, it makes it easier to protect our hearts from hurt. I guess we’re both extremely sensitive.”
“I never thought about you guys that way, you seem such polar opposites.”
“The funny thing about polarity in science, is that often it reflects different facets of the same thing. I think that it would hold true in Michael’s and my case.”
“Lizzie. Why don’t I react that way to Michael?” Maria asked haltingly.
“You mean the glowing?”
“Yeah. I mean both you and Kyle have found your soulmates, and you both react in this explosive way when you’re together.”
“We’ve been healed. And it has nothing to do with me and Max or Kyle and Isabel being soulmates. Max and Kyle could have the same reaction, as I could with Isabel. The reaction just necessitates the right combination of factors. You’re the lucky one; you don’t have to worry about cadmium-y in your body reacting to the enzymes in Michael’s. Max and I could have been seriously injured this morning.”
“So not having been healed is a good thing?”
“Hell yeah.” Liz smiled at Maria. Shaking her head at Maria’s oddball logic. While the connection between Max and her had always been intensified by the healing, it by no means was the sole reason they were together. They had always been a step behind Michael and Maria, especially regarding the physicality of their relationship. The love may have always been there but they had lost sight of it and suffered intensely because of it for a long time.
“I got some really good material out of this mess.” Maria said out of the blue.
“Yep. I wrote three new songs. Unfortunately for Michael they are angry chick songs.”
“Ouch. And do I…um get any mentions?”
“Well, yeah. I was royally pissed chica. Thank you for sending Max over. He made me see better. And I’m really glad we cleared the air. Now I have to talk to my favorite rocketman and see what he has to say for himself.”
“Good for you ‘Ria” Liz said laughingly as she effusively hugged Maria. “Now let’s get back to our boys.”
Maria and Liz walked to the diner’s main room, and were surprised to see it was full, but that their boys weren’t there. One of the waitresses standing at the counter waved to Liz and gave her the message Max had left.
“When do you think they’ll be back?” asked Maria.
“Soon I hope. Let’s wait here for ten minutes and head over to Max’s if they’re not here by then.”
“Sounds like a plan.”
The high school football field was empty. It was the perfect spot to look up at the stars. They blanketed the night sky, opaqued only by the full bright moon as it ruled over its universe. It was the perfect spot to have a talk. Nary a soul wandering through the expanse of grass, only fireflies lighting up intermittently, imitating the sky above them. Sadly the romance of the moment was wasted on the two friends that sat on the bleachers. Their walk had brought them there, for no particular reason. Neither one of them had ever cared too much for sports, not being joiners. Their memories of high school and football lost amidst other crisis, FBI special units, Skins, crazy guidance counselors, crazy congresswomen, and alien pregnancies.
They sat looking up at the sky, finding, as was their custom the star that was their parents’ home. The world they had ruled in another life. The world they had turned their backs on. The world they had been meant to save.
“Why’d you kiss her?”
Michael sighed. He’d known that sooner or later Max would ask him. Max might be handling better a sight better than Maria, but it still bothered him. “I don’t know man. It just happened.”
“But why? Why Liz?”
“Because she understands. Like no one else does. Maxwell, I can’t tell you I’m sorry. I can’t explain the hows and whys of it. I wish I could. But it had to happen. We both needed it. It was something we needed of each other.”
“What do you mean?” Max asked inexplicably worried by Michael’s explanation.
“Just let it go. I’ll never explain it right. Neither will Liz. It meant everything and nothing. It showed us the way we needed to take. You are hers, and she is yours Maxwell. Believe that. It’s the same for Maria and me. I just have to work a little harder at showing her that I mean it. That she can believe in it, in us. The way you and Liz do.”
“It’s fucking hard to stay normal about this. I honestly do understand. But all the time Liz and I spent away from each other I guess makes me feel jealous of the time others have spent with her. I swear I hate Jared and I’ve never even met him.”
Michael didn’t reply to Max’s statement. He understood what Max was feeling. But he had behaved so badly with Maria, with her beautiful heart, that he knew that if he had to be angry with anyone it would have to be himself. Both men leaned back into the bleachers, lost in their thoughts, in the immensity of the cosmos that encompassed the night sky.
A young man in black camouflage walked in the dark moonlight through the desert. His solitary trek heightened by the howls of wild animals and the wail of the wind. As hot as the desert is by day, it is cold by night, its scant vegetation providing little protection from the elements. The young man stopped at the foot of a peculiar rock formation. Shaped like a bell, its rounded bottom was cracked like the Liberty Bell in Pennsylvania. The young man stepped through the crack into what seemed a separate dimension.
“Lieutenant Kingsley.” An older man in full dress uniform saluted the younger man, showing him into a conference room. There were seven more men at the table, each nodded in greeting. The air was thick, anxiety its most prominent feature.
“What do you have to report?”
“Five confirmed subjects, the lawyers, the sheriff, the researcher and the doctor. There’s a singer who has yet to be confirmed. Their movements have been carefully monitored. They either know something, or they’re hiding it.”
“Fuck.” The older man swore violently. “I warned Sam…but he wouldn’t listen.”
“Who’s the weakest?”
“The singer. But the researcher is probably our best bet, the most valuable to the group.”
“Can we cut them at the knees?”
“With her taken care of, sure. It was a mistake to bring her out in the first place.”
“Fuck. You mean we set this up.”
“When I get my hands on Sam I will wrap them around his scrawny self-assured neck. You are dismissed Kingsley. Keep tracking. I’ll contact you once we have everything in place.”
Kingsley saluted and left the stunned men in the conference room to debate their next move. They would have to be careful; as it was the whole thing was about to blow up in their collective faces.
“Where do you think they went?” Maria asked Liz as they walked down Main Street. The summer night was beautiful, the stars shone brightly as the two friends searched for their significant others.
“I don’t know ‘Ria. But they are close by.”
“How do you know?”
“I just do.” Liz shrugged. She could feel Max’s heart as if it were her own. Something inside of her recognized his essence, his presence would never be unknown to her.
“Why can’t I?”
“Why can’t you what?”
“Why can’t I feel Michael? Why is it Liz? I can’t help but feel like everything about Michael and me is second rate. When you compare our love to yours and Max’s it doesn’t seem enough. Not nearly enough.”
“Whoa there, chica. Why are you comparing Michael and you with Max and me?”
“Because you’ve always been the ideal couple. I always envied how easy—“
“Easy? Maria are you insane? Max and I were never easy. It’s taken us twelve years to get our acts together. I’ve loved him for so long, it’s like second nature, but being together was never that simple for us.”
“I meant the emotions, Liz. I know—“
“’Ria. Shut up. Listen to me. What you and Michael have has always been so real. It may not be perfect. It may not be the love dreams are made of, but I’ve been dreaming my entire life and I can tell you it makes for a lonely bedfellow. You and Michael, you guys are so alive, so passionate. Don’t lose sight of that. And never compare your relationship to ours, because no they aren’t the same. That’s what makes them wonderful.”
They had stopped walking during Liz’s impassioned speech. And when she was through Maria looked at her with tear-filled eyes. “I missed my best friend.”
Liz smiled and went to give Maria a hug. “So did I.”
“Hey what’s all this hugging about?”
Liz let go of Maria to run into Max’s open arms. “Hey you! Where did you run off to?”
“Michael and I got a little antsy and we went to the football field.”
“The football field?” Maria asked archly. “I didn’t even think you guys knew where that was.”
“There are still things you don’t know ‘Ria.” Michael stated quietly.
“And will I?” Maria asked all joking put aside. Frightened by the feeling of precariousness the question raised in her.
Michael didn’t reply immediately. He held his hand out to Maria, and when she took it in hers, he looked deeply into her eyes. “Yes.” Waving to Max and Liz he pulled Maria along, so that they could be alone to talk.
Liz watched from the haven of Max’s arms as her best friends walked off together. “They’ll be okay.”
“Yeah. I hope so too.” Max walked over to one of the benches dragging Liz along with him. He just wanted to hold her for a while, before going home.
“Max, what’s going on?”
“What do you mean Liz?”
“You’ve been acting strange all night. It’s like you’re on edge. You haven’t stopped looking over your shoulder, and I know that you had stopped doing that. Will you talk to me?”
Max sighed and pressed Liz tightly to him. He had no choice but to tell her. Liz wouldn’t give up, she’d always been beyond tenacious. “I got an odd phone call. With everything else going on, I just think it’s a good idea to be cautious.”
Liz ran her fingers through his hair, before kissing him deeply. When they came up for air, she said breathelessly, “I told my parents I was moving in with you. I have an overnight ready and waiting, and tomorrow I’ll pick up the rest of my things. Now, can we just go home.”
“Already, Liz, I thought—“ Max said as he stood up, stretching.
“That I needed time? Are you crazy, it’s been long enough as it is. Now take me home and let me have my wicked way with you.”
Max smiled at Liz’s reply and swung her into his arms, twirling them around in circles. “Only if I get a turn.”
They walked home holding hands. Laughing as they talked about their plans for the future.
Maria and Michael walked to the same place they had been last night. Their emotions so different from the night before. The only thing that remained the same was their sense of urgency. They both wanted to save their relationship desperately. They were also both at a loss as to how to accomplish that before it self-destructed before their very eyes.
“Maria. Shh. Let me say this.” Michael sat down on the fountain, his eyes on the water the sprinkled its way to the waiting pool. “I know I’ve done a lot of things wrong. I’ve never been able to fully express what was in my heart. And I know how hard that is for you. You are one of the most open people I know. The way you love me, ‘Ria, it’s amazing. I feel it. Even now.
“I am praying that I have the right words to tell you what you mean to me. I hate that I’ve hurt you. I hate that I’ve brought tears to your eyes. I hate that you’ve lost some of your sparkle, that you’ve doubted yourself because of me.
“You are why I am still here. You are the reason I’ve found peace. You are my everything. I love you Maria. Your smile, your sparkling eyes, the way you go on and on about things, your effusiveness, your sincerity, your vulnerability, I love it all, but most of all ‘Ria I love the way you love me.”
Michael swallowed reflexively, he didn’t know if he had used the right words. He wasn’t sure if those were the words Maria wanted to hear. And when he saw the tears spilling down her cheeks, he knew he had lost. He had only hurt her more. He backed away, when suddenly Maria hurled herself into his embrace.
Her lips on his, she arms around his neck, her fingers tangling themselves in his hair. Maria kissed him and told him everything in her heart. She opened her whole being and he saw the hurt he had caused mingling with the utter joy and shock upon finally hearing the words she had waited to hear from him for so long.
“Take me home spaceboy.” Maria said before being swept up in Michael’s arms, and having her every wish fulfilled.
“Max what are you doing?” Liz asked as he swept her up into his arms.
“I’m carrying you over the threshold.”
“But we’re not married.”
“Not yet. But I figure we need all the good omens we can get.”
Liz looked into his eyes, the laughter in them shaded by the pain of ten long years spent apart, and said, “I think we’re covered. We got rid of all the bad things early, all we have to do know is be happy.”
“And are you?”
“Happy? Sweetheart, my heart is bursting with joy. I’m so beyond happy in this moment.”
“Good.” Max replied as he closed the door behind him and captured Liz’s lips in a deep kiss. Sliding her body down his already hardened length.
Their passion soon escalated, and they managed to find the living room couch as they tore off each other’s clothes. Max moved his hands across her back, and cupped her breasts before gently kneading them through the fabric of her bra. Moving his mouth to replace his hands he lavished attention on her breasts, removing her bra and heating her skin.
Liz tingled everywhere Max touched her. But most of all in her heart. And she grabbed his head between her hands and kissed him thoroughly, conveying all the love se felt in that one kiss. Three seconds later Max had removed all their clothes and was sliding into her hard and fast. She came crying out his name as he spilled himself into her. The intensity of feeling mirrored by the strength of their passion.
The room exploded in a blast of red light. Nothing was harmed, all was left untouched but their hearts.
“What the hell?”
Lieutenant Kingsley stubbed out his cigarette as he watched the living room of Max Evans’ apartment light up in red. He shrugged figuring after a while that it had seemed like they were about to have sex, maybe they were into kinky.
“You’re needed at HQ.”
“Have you seen the howling wolf?”
“Not the one by the apple tree.”
Lieutenant Kingsley turned and saluted the young man sent to replace him upon hearing the coded words.
“At ease Private.” he said as he tossed the man his pack of Marlboros, “It’s X-rated up there.”
“I’ll report any unusual occurrence.”
Lieutenant Kingsley nodded as he set off at a brisk pace. He wondered what was so important that they would request his immediate presence there.
Michael and Maria lay in each other’s arms. The afterglow of their love making still hadn’t receded. Maria’s head was cradled on Michael’s shoulder, and he rubbed her arm with his hand as they both looked of into the distance.
“I think that’s why we fight Michael.”
“Maria what the hell are you talking about?”
“The make-up sex we have is so good. How can we avoid it?”
“About you. For you. Yes.”
Maria sat straight up and looked at Michael in shock. Those were words she never expected to hear come out of Michael’s mouth. She placed her hand on his forehead as he looked up at her quizzically.
“Aren’t you going to answer? And why are you checking my temperature?”
Maria didn’t bother to reply as she checked her forehead.
“What? Will you please just answer me!”
“Michael, either you’ve gone crazy or I’m delirious or the whole world has just turned upside down, but baby I couldn’t have heard you right.”
“Maria…look at me. Watch what I’m saying. Will you marry me?”
Maria let out a sudden squeal. And jumping up and down, as much as a person can jump up and down while sitting wrapped in a sheet in a bed, she threw her arms around Michael and said, “Yes.”
Michael smiled as he shook his head slightly. His ears were still ringing from Maria’s shrilled reply when she pushed him down and devoured his mouth with hers.
“Iz, do you think it’ll always be this way?”
“What are you talking about Kyle?”
“Do you think we’ll always feel this intensely about each other? You know that red lights will go off every time we make love. The fireworks, the sparks, do you think they’ll always be there?”
“Why are you asking this Kyle?”
“It’s just. My mom left when I was six. She never came back Iz. What if—“
Kyle’s words were cut off as Isabel pressed her lips to his. “Kyle,” she said. “If it isn’t always this way between us I’ll be stunned. Because no one loves me the way you do. And I have never loved anyone the way I love you. You’re my Buddha boy. And I’m your very own alien princess.”
Kyle smiled. What reassured him wasn’t Isabel’s words. It was the ferocity with which she said them. If she believed, then how could he not.
“I’m set to meet with Samuel Derringer tomorrow.”
“Yeah. I just wanted to know if you’d come with me.”
“Iz, you know I can’t be there. We’ve already risked a lot by telling the others.”
“But what if I disguise you.”
“How?” Kyle asked. Not realizing the answer wouldn’t be something he would not like.
Isabel touched his hair with her finger, lightening it to the palest shade of blonde. She then curled it before reaching for her purse for a mirror.
“Isabel Evans. What the hell did you do to me? To my hair?”
“Calm down Kyle. I can change it back.”
“Yeah. Well next time ask.”
“Just give me some warning. Can you change my eye color?”
“Yeah. You’ll do it then.”
“Yeah. Sure. Why not? Hell we’ve already risked enough.”
Isabel threw her weight onto Kyle’s body, wrapping her arms around him. As she switched his hair back, they began to kiss wildly. The red glow in the room grew with intensity.
The man stationed in the backyard took note. It would bear watching.
“Reeny what do you mean this won’t work?”
“Come on Daddy. It can’t possibly work. The feds are just a mass of incompetent fools. How the hell will they fall into line with what we are trying to get done.”
“Leave them to me.”
“They’ll follow the plan. But you have to do your part.”
“Fine. I got the job.“
“Good. They’re watching them.”
“And is that good.”
“We’ll handle it.“
“Fine. It’s just not like you to risk them like this.”
“Yeah. Well they’ve faced worse and survived. They’ll be fine.”
“Reeny. Be a good girl. Just do what I say.”
“Fine. I love you.”
“I love you too sweetheart.”
I can't help that I love a fictional character...